This week that fabled trickster Mercury finally completes the challenging square to Saturn that they began way back on Mar. 6 or so in the days leading up to Mercury’s retrograde station in the assertive sign of Aries. On Apr. 25, mind, communication, connection and travel god(dess) Mercury is exactly square to Saturn, whose reality principle, limitations and wisdom will want to penetrate any resistance to knowledge which would re-establish an equilibrium that has gone off kilter. The trouble is, there could be a lot of confusion in the air, with conflicting stories and narratives, and even a bit of unabashed manipulation. If it’s a matter of hassles related to travel or commerce, listen closely to your intuition and get second opinions on proposed solutions.  But if there is a deeper existential issue…I’ve said it for several weeks and it bears repeating for this week: you will find clarity if you look deep within your own heart. NOT in the hearts of others, not even the heart of your beloved teacher, mentor or guide. Beyond the stories of good and bad, beyond the desires and wants of self or other, there is a deep reconciling truth waiting for you, in the depths of your own divine nature.

Venus leaves her home sign of earthy, sense-enhancing Taurus and enters mercurial Gemini on Apr. 24. As a significator of “the social butterfly,” Venus in Gemini until May 19 might inspire us to be more social than usual, and yet the grimmer nature of the Mars-Pluto conjunction (exact Apr. 25-27) suggests that this week we might be forced to review exactly who we are spending our time with. We start to become like those we associate with, or as they used to say where I grew up, “If you lay down with the dogs, you’re going to get fleas.” This is not to be overly judgmental of the habits, preferences and choices of others but rather a call to discernment. Is this really a healthy/appropriate/supportive person or persons to be around?


Scorpio Full Moon of 2018

Venus relates to our social groups as well as our most intimate partners, and the Full Moon in Scorpio on April 29, 2018 at 4:58pm US/Pacific looks like it means business. Is there something important about the people you are closest with which you have not quite registered or fully appreciated? Or maybe something about your business partners? A hidden fact could be illuminated for you under this Full Moon, but it’s going to take a willingness to be radically honest with yourself and for some of us, no small amount of struggle, maybe even an act of self-preservation. It is key to summon the presence of mind to notice what you are actually doing, versus your or others’ stories about what you are doing. While the poet assures us that no thing is final, there is a certain fateful quality about actions we undertake at this time, and decisions we take or follow through on—or reconsider. To sort through choices for the most healthy option, take note if what you’re doing is causing harm to or recklessly endangering self or other and consider choosing a path of less violence. Such violence, harm or endangerment will boomerang back to you sooner or later.

Some ways to work out Mars-Pluto energy (active Apr. 13 – May 3): engaging in vigorous athletics, playing an intense if friendly game of competition, DANCING!!, throwing yourself into a pitched effort to complete a project that may require a bit of fortitude or endurance, participating in search and rescue efforts, volunteering at an animal rescue shelter, participating in advocacy for animal welfare, and any sort of physical adventure in the natural world. If your mobility is restricted, you could take such adventures into the imaginal realm, and soar to imagined places in ways which make your heart pound.

If you find yourself drawn to sexual encounters under these skies, take time to know who you’re having sex with. Even someone you thought you trusted could turn out to have something unsavory about them, so just have a good look before leaping in that direction. Particularly if there is any hint of jealousy, possessiveness or unequal interest in each other. Communication is very sexy, especially when it comes to understanding mutual hopes and expectations, and of course: establishing and maintaining mutual consent.

Finally, if you find yourself out and about under the high-energy Scorpio Full Moon and in the mood to party and perhaps indulge in substances which can blur boundaries and slur judgment, take along some trusted friends and think twice about wandering alone.  Ask any hospital emergency room worker about the increase in accidents and chaos in the ER under the Full Moon!  This particular Full Moon has a potential for aggression, which doesn’t mix so well with mind-altering substances.


Step into the realms of Soul and enlarge the conversation you are having with the world through an astrological consultation. With Erica as your guide, cross the astrological bridge between heaven and Earth to transform liabilities into assets and cooperate with the energies and forces presently shaping your life. Get in touch at erica at realimaginal dot com!

SATURN RETURN SPECIAL    In honor of the generation born roughly 30 years ago with a Saturn-Uranus-Neptune conjunction in Capricorn, I am offering everyone with natal Saturn placed from 25° Sagittarius to 29° Capricorn ~ roughly those born Jan. 1929 – Nov. 1932; Mar. 1958 – Jan. 1962; and Dec. 1987 – Feb. 1991 ~ a special Saturn return reading at the following reduced rates for a limited time only:

Returning clients
$65 for 60 minutes
$35 for 30 minutes

New clients
$75 for 60 minutes
$40 for 30 minutes


Though a few days delayed to readers of Real Imaginal – thank you Mercury retrograde – this week’s astrological forecast has been written for the plant-wise Anima Mundi Apothecary newsletter!

Check out the section in the newsletter just below the forecast, featuring Anima Mundi’s recommendations of herbs to balance out Mercury and various plant allies to assist with its challenges.

Once a month, the week’s astrological forecast will go out in Anima Mundi’s newsletter along with their herbal tips, DIY preparations and information.  In the meantime, be sure to investigate all that Anima Mundi Apothecary has concocted in conspiracy with the plants’ desire to heal us!


Click here for a look at the astrology of the week of March 27 – April 2, 2018


This week features a total lunar eclipse, or “blood moon,” which is also a blue moon, meaning a second full moon in a calendar month. It is also a supermoon, which happens when the moon comes closer to the Earth than usual (14% closer), making it 30% brighter. The extra special features of the Full Moon converge on 11° Leo, which is exact at 5:26AM US/Pacific time on Wed., Jan. 31, 2018. Mercury will enter Aquarius just shortly thereafter, moving us from a more strategic, rational mindset to one of cool detachment and a willingness to entertain different ideas. It offers a chance to open up to new perspectives and perhaps take a step back from entanglement in problematic emotions—though beware of becoming so detached that you become impersonal and unfeeling and lost in conceptual reality. Trying to escape an unpleasant reality is a far cry from gaining fresh perspective on it to move things in a better direction.

The Full Moon in Leo

Venus at 16°Aquarius is caught up in this total lunar eclipse, which brings an emphasis to surface appearances, matters of reciprocity, sentiments, pleasures and beauty as well as romantic, social and work relationships. Venus in Aquarius values freedom, individuality, perhaps being a little shocking with unconventionality or originality. And so you are called to be true to yourself as you are confronted with your unconscious or semiconscious habits of relating to others. Be that in friendship, in romantic partnership, in collegial or workplace relationships—this Full Moon is your cue to take note of the ways you sabotage yourself in relationships without really being aware of it. How this shows up could be reflected in the condition of your own natal Venus, and how it is aspected by other planets. Here are a few jumping off points for your reflection – find the planetary combination(s) with Venus found in your chart:

Venus-Sun – It’s nice to be liked, and doesn’t Venus-Sun crave that! But conflicts which you have been avoiding, or faults in yourself which you have glossed over may come bounding towards you with a test of your ability to be honest.

Venus-Mercury – Diplomacy falls flat when it’s only serving of your self-interest and to the detriment of your community. Those with Venus-Mercury may find themselves forced to show their hand around this Leo Full Moon.

Venus-Moon – Whether sticky sweet and overly empathetic, or using charm to coerce or deceive, this Leo Full Moon may bring those with Venus-Moon some perspectives which cause divisions or otherwise bring in needed objectivity to their interaction with others.

Venus-Mars – Perhaps you love a good quarrel, or enthusiastically pursue nearly every romantic opportunity, no matter how complicated, and so this Full Moon may shine a light on ways in which you damage potentials for genuine connection.

Venus-Jupiter – A tad self-indulgent at times, where too much is just not enough? Or is it that your expectations of others are off the charts? Perhaps this Full Moon will help you get a handle on knowing when enough is enough.

Venus-Saturn – It’s okay to be discerning but where has the quest for discernment lapsed into fear? A collision with boundaries that hamper the flow of connection may be a feature of the Leo Full Moon.

Venus-Uranus – The consequences of erratic choices or inconstancy in relationships may enter your awareness, asking you to evaluate how you achieve independence within relationship or how you might better serve your love of the unconventional.

Venus-Neptune – Go easy on yourself if your illusions begin to falter under the influence of this Full Moon. There is a profound art to retrieving projections of the ideal onto others, and retrieving parts of your own Soul thereby. Let disappointment guide you to deeper knowledge, as you offer the radical acceptance of a loving parent to the part of you that may feel victimized.

Venus-Pluto – Your addiction to radical vulnerability is highlighted in this lunation, and payoff can come through looking at how you put your heart or sense of well-being firmly in the hands of others. Not how anyone “makes you” do so, but in fact, what is by your own choice.

This week’s astrological forecast is written for the plant-wise Anima Mundi Apothecary newsletter!

Once a month, the week’s astrological forecast will go out in Anima Mundi’s newsletter along with their herbal tips, DIY preparations and information.  In the meantime, be sure to check out all that Anima Mundi Apothecary has concocted in conspiracy with the plants’ desire to heal us!

Wishing everyone a powerful 2018 illuminated by mutual aid and supported by the contemplation: “Building community is to the collective as spiritual practice is to the individual.”


Click here for a look at the astrology of the week of January 2 – January 9, 2018


The last week of December 2017 begins with a Sun-Venus-Saturn conjunction in Capricorn that may have brought a bit of a reserved, somber or even contentious mood to holiday gatherings or other social events. Perhaps a less festive mood and more reflective, introspective and even an enjoyable (Venus) solitary (Saturn) experience (Sun) prevailed, and this tenor will largely continue up through New Year’s Eve of the Gregorian calendar.

However, moving into mid-week, we see Mars trining Neptune, which along with Mars’ conjunction with Jupiter in Scorpio, could light more of a fire under our ideals and spur us to correct imbalances in our social, intimate or employment spheres. Beware of any zealous delusion, since Mercury in Sagittarius squaring Neptune in Pisces could be susceptible to making broad generalizations or simply selfish, short-sighted appraisals which may be great for heated arguments but fall short of making a convincing case. Particularly on Dec. 28 and 29, as the Moon sweeps through Taurus, we could find ourselves caught between making a more conciliatory gesture that retains a cool social veneer, and just meting out raw justice. Find the balance—keep it real, but recognize the complexities of the situation. If it helps to summon your kindness, remember your own past mistakes or shortcomings, so that the adjustments you try to make now will go as smoothly as possible.


Awaken! Do not squander your life!


New Year’s Eve in US time zones looks a little more festive, although the Moon’s opposition to Saturn, along with a tight Sun-Venus conjunction in Capricorn could make for a less than expansive mood. More intimate gatherings with trusted friends and close loved ones are favored, as well as celebrating in more refined, classy or even old-fashioned settings. A house party featuring old-fashioned parlor games and party favors, and copious amounts of tasty hors d’oeuvres comes to mind. Beware of over-indulgence, as the Full Moon chart for New Year’s Day (east of the International Date Line) looks like one of seeking tonic from “the hair of the dog that bit me,” i.e., having overindulged in alcohol. Sticking close with a trusted friend to check in on everything—including intoxication levels, if that’s on your agenda—throughout the evening of New Year’s Eve is a very good idea. Have several plans for how to get home safely if you plan to go out.

The Full Moon in Cancer falls on New Year’s Day 2018 at 6:24pm US/Pacific, and looks to be a contemplation on the choices we have made around who to associate with. Venus falls at the midpoint of Saturn and Pluto, and anything that may have been stirred up at the beginning of the week could be deeply illuminated as we strive to understand how and to whom we belong. If this theme is up for you, it is not likely to be a superficial or simply passing thought but a matter with far-reaching consequences or implications. Endings signify new beginnings, but only if we can summon the emotional and spiritual maturity to take honest steps in the direction of  greater health.

The final Mercury retrograde period of 2017
Key dates:
Nov. 14 Mercury enters its own shadow at 13° Sagittarius
Dec. 3 Mercury stations retrograde at 29° Sagittarius
Dec. 22 Mercury stations direct at 13° Sagittarius
Jan. 10 Mercury exits its own shadow at 29° Sagittarius

This week’s astrological forecast is written for the plant-wise Anima Mundi Apothecary newsletter!

Once a month, the week’s astrological forecast will go out in Anima Mundi’s newsletter along with their herbal tips, DIY preparations and information.  In the meantime, be sure to check out all that Anima Mundi Apothecary has concocted in conspiracy with the plants’ desire to heal us!

Click here for a look at the astrology of the week of November 28 – December 4, 2017

with much love and blessings on your wholeness, health and well-being under the Gemini Full Moon,

The Scorpio Full Moon is now upon us, drawing into exactitude on May 10 at 2:42pm in the Pacific time zone.  She offers a fantastic opportunity to dive into our unwanted, discarded or so-called negative emotions, whether in an internal process or in working out interpersonal or community difficulties. Scorpio’s depths can be known for “drama,” but it only becomes drama when we refuse to surrender to the problematic and untidy aspects of relationships.

Scorpio Full Moon in the Pacific time zone

In reality, the Scorpio Moon is searching for emotional truth, but it can be a little guarded because it’s so vulnerable, exposed, and a little raw in expecting betrayal…particularly in emotion-phobic societies, a Scorpionic Moon cannot always trust that it will be met in that place of vulnerability by others.

Occupying the other side of this lunation, the Sun in Taurus is comfort-seeking, especially creaturely and bodily comforts/habits (“what makes me feel good”) which can serve to avoid changes which require presence to discomfort and messiness. On the one hand, a reaction to the discomfort can be to want to go unconscious, and all kinds of escape routines pop up (food, sex, drink, TV, etc). On the other hand, using the tension between Taurus and Scorpio can provide a fantastic catapult to move into a new relationship with old escape patterns which undermine the strength and quality of our relationships.

Here it should be said that some of our escape routines are there because we actually do need them to psychospiritually survive. There is no shame in being where you are, and there is great honor in knowing you are there. The Scorpio Moon can bring you into closer intimacy with your truth, whether this moment provides a pivot point for change to occur, or it is another step of awareness along a path towards greater wholeness. The path itself is the destination.

Bringing awareness to one’s thoughts and feelings may reveal some familiar old patterns of escape. “Oh yeah, I’ve seen this before.” It could even be a rather undramatic display. But the special opportunity of the next couple of days is to FEEL the feelings. Not think about them or form some concept or story about them, particularly if you are familiar with the behaviors that correspond to the feelings. But FEELING the feelings without labeling or censoring them. Then you might ask yourself in compassionate self-appraisal, what your feelings say about you and your values? (Not what they say about other people!) Might you then need to reach out to others to share your emotional realities, hopefully in a nonviolent way, to try to repair or otherwise address imbalances in your social world – and/or to celebrate and reinforce what is working well?

Lovingkindness and compassion provide a great antidote to reacting against unwanted or even taboo thoughts, feelings and behaviors that could pop up these next few days. This would be a way of bringing in Taurus at its best—being slow, methodical, accepting of human realities. Lean into what it feels like to be a mostly unconscious, instinctually driven and highly vulnerable human, animal body. Imagine that everyone is subject to such vulnerability (and struggle with it). A gentle and kind approach to this with yourself and others can bring better results.

In addition, be willing to reconsider old stories about feelings, become re-acquainted with that which has been pushed down deep and out of (your) sight. This could harness the fading Mercury retrograde to more positive purposes and mitigate its tendency to produce miscommunications which could fuel drama rather than serve transformation. The accompanying Mercury-Uranus conjunction could correlate to a fresh burst of insight—even if it may have its unpleasant edges.