Do you enjoy playing games? You know, Scrabble, Monopoly, charades or chess? Or more active games like tennis or rugby? What’s your game of choice? And how do you play? Do you like to play solo, with a partner, or are you a team player? Are you a risk taker or gambler? Or are you a cards-close-to-chest individual? Do you like to win at all cost? Do you give way easily? Do you cheat? Have you thought about what gives you a feeling of enjoyment, connection or even power in game playing? And what’s game playing got to do with this month’s astrology?
Our approach to game playing provides clues to our approach and response to life. Of course the stakes are higher in life but whether you’re playing to win, a strategist, or to simply enjoy, the feelings that arise through playing games can be revealing, especially within the relationship field. Do you tend to fight your corner or give way? Do you sulk? Perhaps you lose your sense of self in a game? Or maybe winning doesn’t matter? How are you with team sport? Ever fallen out over a game? Children do it all the time don’t they? No doubt we’ve all met a poor loser at some point, or someone who will use any means to win. We have so many subtle ways of trying to gain power as human beings.
July is a game-changing month. There are two main threads of energy. There’s the one-step-forward-two-back that we experience in games like Snakes & Ladders. It’s up the ladder on a potential high, then down the snake, back to where you started. Then there’s the unexpected turnaround like the ‘Go to Jail’ card in Monopoly and its release, the ‘Get Out of Jail Free’ card that gets you moving again. Between the two we may not know if we’re coming or going this month.
This month’s spotlight is on relationships: what we’ve inherited from ‘mum and dad’ and our beliefs, ideas and concepts about what it is to be an authentic man or woman. The core energy is about kindness yet authenticity within oneself and in connection – opening the heart and revealing our vulnerability yet also standing strong in what’s real. It’s about growing and acting from true sensitivity. In relating it’s opening our capacity to move on from the shadows of need or emotion based connections to deeper heart-based authentic relating.
This month’s astrology helps us to understand how the game is potentially changing.
2 July: Total Solar Eclipse at 10 Cancer 20.17BST
What needs kindness? What feelings do you need to deeply acknowledge and accept? This first eclipse of the month is a reboot on the feeling level as the Moon (unconscious or feeling self) covers the light of the Sun (conscious self). This eclipse touches our vulnerabilities and intimacies, with self and others. Its potential is to open up any areas where we control feeling. Feeling is a valuable aspect of our Being. At its deepest it connects us to soulfulness. It moves us. Key focus: What are you hungry for? Acknowledge it, ask for it, move towards it. Stay with the heart.
Aspects: Saturn & Pluto conjunct the Moon’s South Node in Capricorn opposing the Cancerian Eclipse. Uranus in Taurus sextile the Cancerian Eclipse. Mercury, Mars & Juno stellium conjunction in Leo.
7 July Messenger Mercury stations retrograde at 4 Leo
Mercury retrograde focus is on how we relate for the whole retrograde journey through to 1 August. There’s a lot of heat around at Mercury station retrograde, provided by the fire of Leo energy. This is a day (or few days) when words might fly. At the very least there could be some challenge in our closest relationships. The wound to self-confidence or assertion is primed yet is also supported in terms of awareness about a much-needed new perspective or response. Mercury will spend most of this retrograde period in Cancer however so whatever takes place in Leo is exactly the catalyst needed to open up our deepest vulnerabilities. It’s a supportive process not to be afraid of, for when we fully acknowledge our most sensitive spots we are empowered to heal them. Sometimes that happens through grace – simply through acceptance – sometimes we need to action. As Mercury moves back into Cancer on 19 July the pull inwards is strong. It’s time to slow down, make space for reflection and what truly feeds you. 26 July to 7 August we are revisiting events and experience from mid June. It’s a time of potential reconnection to what we most need. Key focus through this whole period: control, power plays (within self and reflected through others) and sensitivity. It’s about discovering new ground and mature boundaries that truly support the more fragile aspects of our humanness. Taking life less personally is key.
Aspects: Mercury begins his second retrograde journey of this year at 4 Leo with Mars & Juno conjunct, trine Chiron in Aries & Ceres in Sagittarius. The Sun conjunct North Node in Cancer is opposing Saturn with the South Node in Capricorn and square Pallas Athena in Libra.
8 July Rainbow Bridge Chiron stations retrograde at 5 Aries
As Chiron stations retrograde (along with Mercury) the spotlight is on wounding to self-confidence and/or the capacity to self assert. Over-sensitivity, taking things too personally or emotional neediness are at the root of any relating challenges. The calling is to embrace yet step beyond feeling into heart knowing. For instance if you know a relationship is rooted in love but you’re not feeling it right now, stay with the knowing, be generous with it, live from it. That’s truly real. There’s a potential to deepen in letting go of beliefs and stories that don’t support and to understand how to open and stay within the frequency of heart resonance.
Aspects: Chiron in Aries square Venus in Cancer but also in a Grand Fire Trine with Mars, Mercury & Juno in Leo, & Ceres in Sagittarius.
16 July Partial Lunar Eclipse at 24 Capricorn
This is an uncomfortable eclipse highlighting the dilemma between what’s familiar & comfortable (and therefore feels safe) and what’s an expansive point of growth. Obsessions, power plays and control are in the spotlight with the energies opening from 8 July onwards, well before the eclipse point. It’s a time to grow up and bring in clear boundaries, especially with oneself. Tough love i.e. recognising what is healthy release and what may be emotional indulgence is key. Forgiveness and compassion for self/others and our human dilemma plays a key role in moving through these challenging days. Key focus: the synergy between staying grounded, open and tender and trusting the process.
Aspects: Moon conjunct Pluto, Saturn & the South Node in Capricorn, in a Cardinal Grand Cross with Eris in Aries, Pallas Athena in Libra, Sun & Venus conjunct North Node in Cancer. A Yod aspect to Jupiter in Sagittarius from Vesta in Taurus & Venus conjunct the North Node in Cancer
1 August New Moon at 8 Leo at 04.12BST plus Messenger Mercury station direct at 04.58BST at 24 Cancer (ruled by this New Moon)
As Mercury stations direct at the Eclipse Point of 16 July along with the emerging Leo New Moon, any unfinished business from this month (& particularly around mid June/mid July) rises to be seen and evolved. The energies are fiery, expansive, opportunistic and uplifting but as always, we have choice in our responses: stay in old energy of judgment, control or ‘should’ or be mature, forgive, move on, open into new potentials, even if you don’t know what they are. Blessing-giver Jupiter stations direct on 11 August so is key to this New Moon also. It’s time to open up, go beyond, have faith in new beginnings and be generous, especially in understanding all human beings are wounded at some level.
Aspects: Grand Fire Trine with Sun, Moon, Venus in Leo, Chiron in Aries & Jupiter in Sagittarius. Yod to Mars & Juno in Leo from Neptune in Pisces, Saturn, Pluto & the South Node in Capricorn.
This is a tough month but potentially a very fruitful one, especially in terms of what’s closest to us. Relationship challenges and the sensitivity of our feeling realm colours every aspect of our lives. This month heralds an evolution in understanding this. The events and experience we have supports insightful recognition into the kind of choices we make and the impact they have on our self and others. The opportunity is to move beyond ‘right and wrong’, ‘good and bad’, ‘me and you’ into a deeper understanding that all expression is frequency - sometimes dense, sometimes lighter - and to evolve in this impersonal knowing with our most personal experience.
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