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Highlights for Feb. 14-20, 2022: Birds at the Bendings

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Dates and times are given for U.S. Pacific Time zone.

Valentine, you’re a genius

Valentine’s Day begins with Mercury entering the sign of Aquarius (February 14, 2022, 1:54 pm PST). Mercury in Aquarius reminds me of the little Valentine cards that school kids give each other, or they used to when I was in school. There was something about them that was very breezy and impersonal, friendly rather than romantic. That seems well in keeping with Aquarius, an air sign that in and of itself doesn’t really encourage that “let’s share our innermost feelings” vibe of Mercury in a water sign, or the warm engagement of a fire sign.

This is among the best signs for Mercury, though, in which it excels at capturing unique ideas and connecting them together in innovative ways. Where do inventors come up with their ideas? What about Mozart, born with a powerful Sun/Mercury/Saturn conjunction in this sign, opposed Neptune? It’s said he could write down a complete opera with no changes, as though he were simply transcribing it.

Mozart is a dramatic example of Mercury in Aquarius, which works a bit like dialing into a particular radio wave. It’s the synapses firing, passing electrical signals from neuron to neuron. It gathers together little packets of divine genius and snaps them together like tinker toys. Looking for a good week to embark on a project that needs ideas and inspiration? This is it. You’ll be amazed to find what a genius you are. But don’t commit to anything too soon; expect a sharp change in direction as Mercury squares Uranus on Feb. 24.

Birds at the bendings

The Sabian symbols for the Sun and Moon at this week’s Leo Full Moon (Feb. 16, 2022, 8:56 am PST, at 27.59 Leo) are 28 Leo, “Many Little Birds On The Limb Of A large Tree,” and 28 Aquarius, “A Tree felled And Sawed.” It’s not looking great for these little birds!

A Full Moon brings revelations; it’s the moment in the lunar cycle when everything is illuminated. It’s suddenly clear that the limb of the large tree that you’re sitting on – something you’ve relied upon, depended upon – is about to get sawed down.

The Sun and Full Moon are square the lunar nodes in late Taurus and Scorpio. Planets square the lunar nodes are said to be at “the bendings” of the nodes. If the planet is at an opening square to the North Node, it’s south bending, and it’s involved with internal experience and release. In this Full Moon chart, the Moon is south bending, encouraging a release of painful emotions around being seen and acknowledged. Is your voice being heard and valued? If the answer is “no,” and you’re carrying hurt about it, this is a good Full Moon for letting that go.

If a planet is at the closing square to the North Node, it is north bending and will be expressed more outwardly rather than inwardly. In this chart, the Sun is north bending. And so, while at the same time the Moon in Leo is carrying this pain about not being noticed, the Sun in Aquarius reminds us that our individual gifts are most meaningful when we share them with others.

The work of relating

Whenever Venus and Mars meet, they tell the story of a reunion between lovers. In recent weeks, Venus has had a punishing retrograde journey and a couple of run-ins with PlutoAs Venus reunites with Mars for their first conjunction in two years (Feb. 16, 2022, 6:28 PST, at 16.53 Capricorn), she sinks gratefully – if a little the worse for wear – into his passionate embrace.

This is a resetting point in the life cycle of relationships. The past two years have tried us sorely. Some of us wonder whether we can mend tattered friendships and reinvigorate love affairs strained by either the constant companionship or heartbreaking separation – physically and ideologically – of the pandemic.

But Venus and Mars in earthy, sensual, but pragmatic Capricorn acknowledge that love is not just an emotion. It’s the act of rolling up our sleeves and doing the work of relating.

Breaking and energizing

On February 17, Jupiter sextiles Uranus. This aspect has its origin in a Jupiter/Uranus cycle that began back in 2010 and early 2011, when Jupiter and Uranus came together in a series of conjunctions at 0° Aries, and very late degrees of Pisces. Their most recent major aspect was on January 17th, 2021, when Jupiter in Aquarius made an eventful square to Uranus in Taurus. In the days leading up to the exact aspect, there was a fairly radical Uranian uprising at the US capital; a few days after the aspect, a new president was inaugurated.

Sextiles that follow squares, as this one does, give us the opportunity to examine the conflicting principles that emerged at the square, and to figure out how to integrate the better parts of each planet. Jupiter is the planet that rules laws, religion, courts, constitutions and founding documents – all the ways we codify our shared societal beliefs. As Jupiter comes together with any planet, it magnifies its influence as well. And as this sextile amplifies Uranus, we’re reminded that our beliefs are not carved in stone, and that we should open our doors to new ideas – or risk having them broken down altogether.

Waters of the thaw

As the Sun changes sign each month, the spotlight shifts to a new area of your life. This week, the Sun enters Pisces (Feb. 18, 8:43 am PST), the last sign of the natural wheel.

Pisces symbolizes the wisdom of letting go, the faith that sustains us in uncertain circumstances, and the purification and healing that will ready us to charge into the energetic new year. I seem to remember this time of year, from my farm days, as mud season, when the good earth was in a state somewhere between the comforting solidity of winter’s ice and spring’s freshly tilled soil. The ice of Aquarius is melting, the Aries equinox is visible on the horizon, and Pisces splashes around in the waters of the thaw. We’re on our way to something new – but for now, it just feels like everything we knew has disappeared.

This year’s watery Pisces season, with Venus and Mars in earthy Capricorn, does seem a little muddy. But remember that resistance builds strength, and that even if it’s hard to feel you’re getting anywhere, you’re in fact covering a vast internal distance. Have faith, and keep moving.

Writing and collages © 2019 – 2024 April Elliott Kent

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