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Astrology for April 3-9, 2023: Thumb on the Scale

Dialogue with the Physical World

Mercury enters Taurus this week (April 3, 2023, 9:22 am PDT) for an exceptionally long stay that includes a retrograde period (April 21-May 14). Mercury won’t spring into its home sign of Gemini until June 11.

Deliberate, taciturn Taurus may seem like an odd fit for Mercury. But that’s only if we assume that Mercury’s work is confined to speaking, writing, and conversing. Mercury is also the planet of perception and learning, which are by no means confined to language.

Mercury in Taurus symbolizes our dialogue with the physical world. What can our body teach us? What knowledge do we gain from being embodied, living on a planet? How do we communicate with the world through touch, fragrance, beauty?

To have a dialogue with the things of the physical world – to let them teach us – means letting go of some of our attachment to the mind. It means slowing down chronological time so that we can focus on the present moment.  Particularly during its retrograde period, Mercury in Taurus excels at slowing down. Try not to fight it. We’ll find plenty to occupy Mercury’s curiosity beyond what’s written on a page or spoken with words.


Within a couple of hours of entering Taurus, Mercury connects with penetrating Pluto in a compelling square aspect (April 3, 2023, 11:55 am PDT). Magician Claude Alexander Conlin, billed as “Alexander: The Man Who Knows,” was born with these two planets in aspect. Conlin was a popular stage mentalist of the early 20th century, offering private psychic readings and authoring self-help books with a spiritualist theme.

I was introduced to Alexander in an Ocean Beach consignment store, decades after his death. A print of one of his promotional posters, maybe five feet tall and featuring his trademark, penetrating gaze, stared down at me from the wall. Mesmerized, I almost took the poster home with me and was deterred only by the price tag and a lack of adequate wall space.

Such is the compelling power of Mercury with Pluto. Today, use this combination’s mesmerizing powers of focus, concentration, and persuasion to make long-awaited breakthroughs in your work, and anything else that requires determination.

Thumb on the Scale

The Full Moon at 16°07’ Libra (April 5, 2023, 9:34 pm PDT) is on the Sabian symbol 17 Libra, A retired sea captain; it opposes the Sun on 17 Aries, Two prim spinsters. Both of these symbols suggest something about retreat, prudence, and a careful pace.

In the chart for this Full Moon, the Sun conjoins Jupiter and the Libra Moon opposes them both. Above all, Libra values balance, fairness, and harmony. It insists we find an acceptable compromise between hell-bent-for-leather Aries and the grace that Libra treasures. But let’s face it: Jupiter is like an invisible thumb on the scale, weighing things in favor of the Sun in Aries and Jupiter’s wild abandon. Neither that retired sea captain nor those two spinsters are going to get a lot of peace at this Full Moon.

A Full Moon is like a movie screen that shows us the effects of what was put into motion at the preceding New Moon. This Full Moon reveals the ways in which the new campaigns we undertook with so much energy and zest at the Aries New Moon have affected others – and for that matter, the ways in which our own lives may have gotten a little bit out of balance in the process.

This is the Full Moon in a Lunar Phase Family that began with the New Moon on October 6th, 2021 at 13° Libra. Interestingly enough, that New Moon was also in close aspect with Jupiter. This is the latest chapter in a story of taking great leaps of faith and thinking bigger for ourselves. While these qualities are necessary for moving us forward in our lives, we can sometimes get a little bit carried away under Jupiter’s influence -especially as it moves through impulsive Aries. The Libra Full Moon, sandwiched between two Aries New Moons, is a reminder that it’s not such a bad idea sometimes to wait for a moment or two before we act and to weigh our actions against the possible consequences.

Your Aim is True

I‘ve always had terrible aim. I’d try to throw a toy to the cats, for example, and it would just… drop. Couldn’t so much as sink a wad of paper into a trashcan from across the room.

But one day, I remembered a piece of advice from long-ago: Just focus on the point where you want something to land. I tried it with a toy, and it found its target (a delighted Violet) with ease.

This week, Mercury, the planet of perception, comes together with the Moon’s North Node (April 5, 2023, 10:19 pm PDT), which marks the path of fulfillment and growth. The same technique can help you reach those North Node goals: focus on where you’re going, and your aim will be true.

Affection Thrives on Distance

Venus makes a sextile to Neptune on April 7, 2023 (10:58 am PDT) at 25°57’ Taurus and Pisces. The Sabian symbol for Venus is 26 Taurus, A Spaniard serenading his señorita; Neptune’s symbol is 26 Pisces, A New Moon that divides its influences.

Venus’s Sabian symbol is a romantic and musical one, but Neptune’s symbol encourages time apart on our own, moving to our own rhythm and in the direction of our individual interests.

The sextile aspect between these planets of music, art, and love symbolizes the ways in which affection thrives on distance. As the old saying goes, absence makes the heart grow fonder. Even in the closest relationships, it’s nice to occasionally have a little distance – to imagine your loved one, to miss them, to yearn for them. It might be a good time to spend a night out with friends, or on your own visiting family. This will make it that much more pleasurable and exciting when you’re reunited with the object of your affections.

Fully Baked

Mercury making a sextile aspect to Mars (April 7, 2023, 11:29 pm PDT) presents opportunities to put words and ideas into action. Mercury in Taurus, however, likes to take its time choosing which actions to take. That’s fine, but this is a quick aspect, and we could miss some opportunities altogether if we deliberate for too long. At least, grab a couple of nascent possibilities and throw them into Mars in Cancer’s oven until they’re fully baked.

Any combination of Mercury and Mars can bring confrontation – but sometimes, confrontation is necessary, and the sextile is a friendly aspect that usually brings harmony after the struggle. So if you have to clear the air, go ahead – but bear in mind that Mars is in sensitive Cancer, and others might take offense where none was intended. Fortunately, Mercury in Taurus tends to choose its words carefully.

Writing and images © 2017-23 by April Elliott Kent

For more on this week’s planetary news, listen to my podcast!

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2 comments to " Astrology for April 3-9, 2023: Thumb on the Scale "

  • GabrielleB

    Hello, looking really GOOOOD!!! Hearty Congratulations April, I love love your uber creativity and magical presence here, it’s always a joy to read your weekly and breathe in your perspectives. Jupiter-fumes, way to go.

  • April

    Thank you so much, GabrielleB! 🙂 I’m really happy with the new website and so happy to hear such nice feedback! xo

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