The Waning Moon enters Aries on April 6, 4.45 pm, on the last day of the Balsamic Phase

Chartres Cathedral Stained Glass

Chartres Cathedral Stained Glass

ARIES, Moon of initiative and action
Energetic and fiery

Suitable energy for taking on challenges, participating in competitions, performing daring feats, arduous exercises, physical work, to begin new ventures, or to perform action for its own sake.

Purchase of sporting gear, protective gear, hats, tools, stoves, firewood, machinery, cars, bikes, leather objects.

The mood is decisive, enterprising, impulsive, militant, spirited, visionary. Honest, direct expression of feelings, strong instinct, but somewhat insensitive.

Beware of emotional extremes, head strong, bossy, uncompromising attitudes, lack of empathy, antagonism, aggression, selfishness.

In the garden Aries is traditionally considered too hot, dry and barren for growing anything. Its energy is very suitable instead for cultivating, general maintenance, pruning, pest control, weeding, and harvesting. Plants sown with the Moon in Aries will soon go to seed, due to this Sign’s notorious impatience. Suitable only for early crops.

Healing Herbs: Burdock, Gotu Kola, Red Clover.

 A note: the garden activities associated with the Moon Sign depend also on the cycle the Moon is in. The Moon transiting through a fertile or productive Sign will no be so favorable if the Phase is not a productive one, and vice-versa. For best results the Sign and Phase of the Moon have to be considered together.

Balsamic MoonBalsamic Moon

The Moon is 45 degrees behind the Sun, only three and half days to New Moon. The Moon light is decreasing rapidly and the lunar energy is now being stored as nutrients in the seeds of future plants. It is also the calm before the storm of activities of the New Moon. Time for contemplation, self reflection and healing. The title Balsamic Moon is derived from the word ‘balsam’, unguent which helps to relieve pain and cure ills. During this time we could distil the essence of our past experience, from the last New Moon up to this point, reflect upon what we have experienced and learnt, getting psychologically ready for the cycle which is about to open. This is a spiritual phase, more suitable for meditation and relaxation than action.

  In the garden it is certainly no time for planting or sowing, but it is ideal for cultivation, soil conditioning, eradicating pests and unwanted plants and to prune in order to retard growth.

1 New Moon Crescent fastThe New Moon

The New Moon is the beginning of the Waxing cycle, the sacred marriage of Moon and Sun, Yin and Yang, Night and Day. For three days the Moon becomes invisible. Astrologically we say that the Moon is now conjunct the Sun (on the same degree of Longitude along the Ecliptic). Every month the New Moon occurs in a different Sign. So the Aries New Moon in March/April is always followed by the Taurus New Moon in April/May and so on. New Moons are symbols of new beginning and represent a great time to start something or make important changes in our lives. The energy is right for everything new you would like to try.

In the garden this is traditionally a time to begin sowing and planting because the increasing Moon light will help plants to emerge and flourish. Moisture becomes more and more available as the light of the Moon intensifies, up to the Full Moon. Traditionally however no sowing or planting are recommended within twelve hours of the phase itself.

Aries New Moon, and Aries Mercury, Mars, Uranus, Jupiter. A call to arms?

I was preparing for an intense day on this New Moon, and for good astrological reasons. The conjunction Mars-Uranus has become exact today, so giving a certain character and tone to the whole new cycle the New Moon is opening. Bloody conflicts are all over the news, with not imminent solutions in view.

The whole month will keep this momentum going, the drive for change and progress at all cost (Uranus) married to the need for action without delay and an aggressive general attitude (Mars). This trend will be obvious on the evening news as well as in our own private lives, where conflicts could flare up at the least provocation, causing often a sense of alienation and separateness amongst people. No great strides toward peaceful solutions seem to be on the cards for now.

Furthermore the Sun and Moon were also in conjunction to Jupiter in Aries today and therefore in opposition to Saturn in Libra, thus becoming active participants in the cosmic patterns that are shaping the  present historical events. In fact Jupiter is only now just separating from the opposition to Saturn that became exact, for the third and last time, last Tuesday, March 29.

If interested in the Jupiter-Saturn’s opposition, please look up the astrological highlights of the week March 28 to April 3 HERE, and, for a more in depth analysis, to my older post on the historical significance of the Jupiter-Saturn’s opposition HERE.

The Sun and Moon with Jupiter will attract big events, and perhaps also an inflated expectation of big events. We may risk collectively to escalate differences, rather than contain them.

A good example of this is the fierce conflict raging at present in Australia about the so called Carbon Tax, between opposite factions, one absolutely against it and the other absolutely in favor.

The opposition of Sun and Moon to Saturn, at New Moon, will have also a powerful effect, on this particular issue and others, now and in the next few weeks. Finding a middle ground between Jupiter and Saturn’s tendencies would be indeed very difficult. Perhaps this necessary reform will have to be imposed forcibly on a lot of people who don’t want any of it.

Or another possibility is that Saturn could create the type of stalemate we have seen gripping other crisis, all over the world, from Japan’s atomic crisis, to the bloody civil conflicts in the Middle East and Africa.

Mercury now moving slowly in retro motion in Aries could also have the effect of making us revisit the past, going through similar experiences and tests we have had recently. It is difficult to find permanent solutions to personal or collective problems while Little Brother is making his cosmic loop, because we need now to re-think everything, to go over again what we thought we had outgrown and overcome. Mercury turning direct again, on April 23, will offer more opportunities for a meaningful change of direction. For more information on April’s retrogradation of Mercury visit last week highlights post HERE.

Astrological predictions cannot be rosy under these circumstances, also considering the imminent retrograde station of Pluto (beginning on April 9) that could also mark a more intense and transformative time of the year for all of us.

One of the positive roles of Astrology is to make us more aware of the dangers inherent in a period of social and personal revolutions like the present, hopefully helping to find ways of toning down our passions, thus achieving a measure of cooperation with those who held opposing views.

A different facet of this New Moon story is represented by Neptune entering Pisces tomorrow, April 5. This historical transit seems to indicate that whatever is happening now in the world and within us will have far reaching consequences in shaping our beliefs, because we are in the grip of something much bigger than our own individual ambitions, dreams or wants, something we can hardly fight against because it seems and is unavoidable.

Amongst all other transits active at present the passage of Neptune in Pisces could redeem us by fostering compassion and tolerance, in a period of increased turbulence and unrest. Via Neptune’s unifying lenses we may be made to perceive that the aspirations of all human beings on the planet are indeed the same, because our source of being is the same.

For more about the transition of Neptune into Pisces visit my Escape to Neptune post HERE and More about the effect of Neptune in Pisces HERE.

My own Aries’ transits

I have been living through an experience lately, confirming to me the power of planetary configurations on our daily life. This story can also be read as an apology for posting this New Moon article late and also for non having published yet the Mars in Aries’ article I was preparing last week.

A sudden and very acute attack of sciatica prevented me from working. Only tonight I am finally able to sit for any length of time to type.

Well, my sciatica is part of the Aries story really. Mars, entering Aries on Friday, April 2, has formed a perfect right angle (square) with my very early Cancer Sun and my Birth Chiron, on the cusp of Sagittarius and Capricorn. And, of course, Uranus was already forming exactly the same aspects since it too entered Aries on March 12. Uranus was obviously just waiting for Mars passing over the same degree to unleash its sudden fury over my poor sciatic nerve.

Today, New Moon day, Mars is conjunct Uranus; this particular transit has therefore reached its climax. My condition has improved slightly; I feel I am on the road to recovery.

The New Moon always brings some difference, offering an opportunity to look at our predicament in a new light, with hope rather than gloom. I feel that the waxing energy of the New Moon helps the body to fight back or give enough incentive to tackle ongoing problems with a fresh and positive attitude.

I didn’t expect my sciatica to get as bad as it did, so Uranus provided the aspect of unexpectedness, as it is supposed to do.  Mars, on the other hand, brought on the acute stage of the condition, flaring it up. And Chiron the soreness, one to which I am already accustomed, having had it times before. With Chiron is always something from the past that hit us, something ingrained and chronic that causes the physical or psychological unease, fostering at the same time a desire to understand the root cause of a condition, thus also promoting healing.

Of course the very same transits wouldn’t have had the same results if my Natal Gemini Mars did not promise trouble in the first place, opposing Natal Chiron in the Sign of Sagittarius (ruling over the sciatic nerve), conjunct Natal Mercury (planet of mobility), and at right angle to Natal Saturn in Virgo Third House, often stressing life’s limitations in a very physical way. The Saturn in Virgo connection shows me also the obvious consequences of the unhealthy choice of sitting for hours at the computer, forgetting to keep my body in a good posture, foregoing in fact all good advice in this respect.

In good Saturnine fashion I conclude that the sciatica is not just a case of bad luck, but very much of bad choices too.

Mea culpa.


New Moon night. It is as dark as it can be. I discovered that the Sun and Moon are now conjunct Hamal, the alpha star of the Aries constellation, situated in the head of the mythical Ram, and therefore symbolising a pushing forward type of movement. Being also the first New Moon after the Aries Equinox it is a very fit symbol for all new beginnings, all turning points and fresh starts.

Below is the Horoscope of this New Moon, cast with the coordinates of Wollumbin. The planetary picture would be the same in other parts of the world, while the orientation of the Sun, Moon and Planets (their relative position to the local horizon) changes in different locations, because of the differing clock time.

The positions of the Planets in the Signs of the Zodiac have a collective nature, while the positions of the same in the Houses of the Horoscope belongs to a specific locality, in this case the East Coast of Australia. To make this more clear under this Chart I have placed a second Horoscope, describing the same Aries New Moon, but near Yushu, in North West China, on the border with autonomous Tibet, where a powerful earthquake hit this morning, 07.49 local time, killing hundreds. The coordinates are of the actual earthquake’s epicentre (as I found them in this Earthquake’s Stub in Wikipedia).

The power of Saturn in the first Chart and of Mars in the second is immediately evident. On Wollumbin, Australia, Saturn is conjunct the Upper Meridian (Mid-Heaven) and happens to be the Ruling Planet of the whole Horoscope because Capricorn, Saturn’s Sign, is rising.

In Tibet, on the other hand, Mars in Leo is on the epicentre’s Upper Meridian (Mid-Heaven) and happens also to be the Ruling Planet of the whole Horoscope because Scorpio, Mars’ Sign, is rising at the time of the quake!

Why should I look at the New Moon Chart in Tibet instead than directly look at the Chart for the time of the earthquake, someone could ask?

Well, it naturally came to my mind that the New Moon, happening on the same day, must have some bearing on it. This confirms the opinion of many astrologers, including myself, that Lunations are as powerful catalysts of natural disasters as Eclipses. So New and Full Moons don’t need to correspond to Solar and Lunar Eclipses, because your garden variety Lunation can bring very similar results, if the general aspects on the day carry that type of message.

If interested please check my previous posts on other natural disasters, such as Haiti and Chile, also connected with Eclipses and normal Lunations.

I am fascinated by this Horoscope. And, strange enough, of course, Global Village this afternoon portrayed the life of the Tibetans of Ladakh, people very close, culturally and geographically, to the victims of this latest catastrophe. Uranus comes to mind with its catastrophic reputation, at present still opposed by Saturn, making a slow come back in Virgo (out in July).  I cannot help also observing Jupiter running behind Uranus, eager to catch up with him (not until June), but already in the other’s aura (orb).  Jupiter would possess the power to amplify the catastrophic potential of  Uranus on the Pisces-Aries’ cusp, as this transit becomes more active between now and July, and then again in September this year and January next year.

In both the Tibetan New Moon and Earthquake Charts there is also a clear emphasis on the Fixed Signs, Taurus (the earthquake Sign by definition)  rising in the Earthquake Chart and Scorpio  rising instead in the Aries New Moon Chart. In the Aries New Moon Horoscope all four angles fell in Fixed Sign.

Below is the Horoscope of the actual earthquake, at 07.49 am, local time, for the epicentre’s coordinates, 33° N 16′ and 96° E 37’44”.


The Luminaries, now very close to each other, are found in the Twelfth House in this Chart, the sector that has to do with unavoidable fate and things that cannot be changed, because they have their roots in past karma. In this Earthquake’s Chart the Moon is still waning. The disaster occurred in fact in the last hours of the Moon’s cycle. This means that the event itself belongs really to the previous cycle that began with the New Moon in Pisces on March 16 , despite its proximity to the next Aries New Moon, only 12 hours forty minutes away.

That New Moon, you might remember, had the Sun and Moon conjunct to Uranus in Pisces, in applying opposition to Saturn in early Libra. Saturn happened to rule over this New Moon Horoscope of Tibet, because the Saturnine Sign of Capricorn was rising at the time there. It wasn’t, by any astrological standards, a promising beginning for the new Lunation month, manifesting very strongly the power of Uranus, always intent at disrupting the status quo, seeking the New that can be built only from the ruins of the past. Plus Ruling Planet Saturn was positioned in the House of Death and Loss in the Tibetan Pisces New Moon’s Chart, a difficult position in any Chart. Mars had turned Direct by then and was sitting right on the cusp of the New Moon’s Chart Descendant (the western angle), a position that makes Mars more powerful (compare Mars on the Mid-Heaven on the Aries New Moon Chart for Tibet, also very prominent). This Mars augments the destructive potential of the transits considered previously.

Here I add the Chart of the Pisces New Moon, calculated, again, for the Tibetan coordinates.


To conclude with an image I looked up the Sabian Symbol of the degree rising on the Ascendant at the very moment the earthquake struck in Tibet. This image, connected with 07° 46′ of Taurus, reads: a sleigh without snow. This conjures up in my mind eye those mud slides that have been responsible for many of the casualties during this terrible event.

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