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Astrology Highlights for Sep. 11-17, 2023: Things Change

Report Card

This week’s New Moon (Sep. 14, 2023, 6:40 pm PDT) falls at 21º58’ Virgo, the sign symbolized by the virgin, a self-sufficient woman who needs no one else to make her whole. Where Virgo falls in your birthchart, you are complete. As Virgo actress Greta Garbo famously said, “I want to be let alone,” and in the matters connected with the Virgo house of your chart, you’re happiest when left to your own devices. Here, you become absorbed in the happy work of Virgo – problem solving, figuring stuff out, and making things work.

It’s also, funnily enough, the area of life where people look at you with a kind of respectful awe – possibly because you don’t seem to need or care about anyone’s approval. In this part of your life, you don’t need a report card from anyone else. You’re grading yourself on an entirely different (and probably more punishing) scale.

We wander onto the bad side of Virgoland’s tracks when we go to extremes, either starving or overindulging our love of solitude. As soon as a guilty voice in your head begins scolding that you “should” do something, anything other than spending time in some happy, quiet pursuit, then you’re in trouble. But when a sad voice in your head begs you not to join the human race because interacting with others is just too much work, you’re also in trouble.

Virgo is a sign of adjustment and compromise, and its symbolism contains an essential truth: That having things exactly the way we want them all of the time is not a reasonable goal, nor a healthy one, and it certainly won’t make us happy. Even alone, contentedly pursuing our Virgo objectives in a hermetic cocoon, we can’t be happy forever; humans are social creatures, and every now and then we have to rub shoulders with our fellow man and adapt to the world as it is.

Green Light

You know how it feels to stand up after you’ve been sitting still at your desk for a couple of hours, or to awaken groggy from a long, deep nap, or to redirect your focus after being intensely consumed in a task? That’s approximately the sensation of Mercury stationing direct (Sep. 15, 2023, 1:21 pm PDT) after a three-week retrograde period. After a particularly vexing period that began on Aug. 23, the signal light turns green, and it’s time to shift gears and move forward.

But it’s not as cut-and-dried as that. The traffic light clicks over right away, but you’ll probably need a day or two to let your mind awaken, stretch, and focus, and to let matters that have been stuck have a chance to unstick themselves.

Exciting Work

The Sun in Virgo trines Uranus this week (Sep. 15, 2023, 6:24 pm PDT, 22º56’ Virgo/Taurus). A trine (120º) angle is considered harmonious because it naturally occurs between planets in signs of the same element – in this case, earth. A trine is positive inasmuch as the two planets work together comfortably, even if their essential natures are radically different, which is the case with the Sun (unshakable sense of self) and Uranus (things that shake us up). But the sign of Virgo and the planet Uranus actually share more than this aspect – a certain untouchable independence.

The Sun is on Sabian symbol 23 Virgo, An animal trainer – and the animal that needs to be trained in this scenario is the Sun. Untamed, the Sun can veer from healthy self-regard straight into hubris. But modest Virgo is just the right trainer. Virgo just wants to get the job done, and the Sun in this sign, in harmonious connection to Uranus, points to an exceptional week for innovative and exciting work, without the drama of unchecked ego.

Things Change

Venus makes its last of three squares to Jupiter (Sep. 16, 2023, 11:09 pm PDT, 15º18’ Leo/Taurus) on the Sabian symbol 16 Leo: Sunshine just after a storm, with Jupiter on 16 Taurus: Old man attempting vainly to reveal the mysteries. I like to think that this series of squares (the first two were on June 11 and Aug. 22) have revealed “the mysteries” of why getting what we want doesn’t always satisfy us, and how getting too much of a good thing doesn’t mark the road to happiness either.

This final Venus-Jupiter lesson has to do with mindset. We think of Jupiter as a lucky planet, but you know what makes folks lucky a lot of the time? It’s the determination to be happy and to see whatever comes their way as luck.

In the film “Things Change,” Don Ameche plays Gino, an elderly shoeshine man who resembles a notorious gangster and who agrees to go to prison his place. As a young gangster supervises him before his court date, Gino meets a series of changes in fortune – money won, money lost, mistaken identity that sometimes works for him and sometimes doesn’t. Whether the wheel of fortune swings up or down, the old man’s response is a calm shrug, and the observation, “Things change.”

In the end, this series of squares has been a mini-course in that philosophy. Things change, and what might seem fortunate could soon turn unfortunate, but the reverse is true as well. Whether we’re up or down, what makes us lucky – and happy – is the ability to look for the sunshine after the storm.

Writing and images © 2017-23 by April Elliott Kent

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