Radical Astrology by Emily Trinkaus
Is anyone else wondering how we ended up inside Orwell’s 1984—and how to get out? To get a grip on what the hell is going on in our increasingly surreal post-9/11 world, I’m turning to Mars, the God of War.
The US is currently preparing to invade Iraq, despite zero evidence that this already devastated nation poses a threat to the US or possesses “weapons of mass destruction”. With no clearly defined enemy or goal, and the alleged terrorist states all rich in natural resources (spell that “O-I-L”), Orwell’s “Infinite War” looks a lot more like Infinite Imperialism. United We Stand (On the Rest of the World) is the best correction I’ve seen to that ubiquitous slogan.
The Fall Equinox (September 22) suggests that, unless we can reclaim and rebirth the archetype of the Warrior, we’ll be tuning in to another season of the administration’s Permanent War. Setting the tone for the next three months is the ominous Sabian Symbol for the chart’s Ascendant (or Rising Sign): “A quiver filled with arrows: Man’s aggressive relationship to natural life…. At a higher level—as in the Zen practice of archery—the obstacle is the ego”.
However, our collective Mars has not been operating at the highest frequency, to put it mildly. While the US military bullies the rest of the world and threatens to take over civilian life (not to mention outer space and the oceans), we’ve surrendered our personal power to a myriad of social entities—TV, corporations, pharmaceuticals, and various authority figures. The addictive behavior characteristic of a blocked Mars is rampant in our society.
Since 9/11, I have struggled with the question of how to take effective action and claim power in the face of what appears to be rising fascism. Mars in Virgo (August 30 to October 15) points to our daily lives—our work, diet, habits and routines—as a good place to start. Mars forms an exact square (90 degree angle) to Pluto in Sagittarius in the Equinox chart, a potentially self-destructive combination. We are called by this aspect to make sure that our lofty ideals are in line with our everyday actions. Sagittarius likes to philosophize about making the world a better place, but Virgo is willing to do the humble work that creates actual transformation.
When Mercury goes Retrograde (backwards) through the sign of Libra, from September 14 to October 6, we’ll have the opportunity to review and revise concepts of peace, love, equality, politics and justice. This could be a good moment for peace and justice activists to re-group, re-creating personal relationships that serve as a foundation for a wider movement. Gandhi said, “Peace between countries must rest on the solid foundation of love between individuals”.
The practical rules for any Mercury Retro period are: don’t sign (contracts and such), don’t buy (especially cars and electronic equipment), and don’t be surprised if your computer freaks out.
Venus is also going Retrograde this fall, from October 10 to November 20, through the intense and watery sign of Scorpio. On a personal level, we tend to revisit old relationships and may feel the urge to break up with current partners. However, if you’re serious about breaking up, this isn’t the time to do it, since you’ll probably end up back together. This is also a less-than-promising time to get married.
Venus in Scorpio values honesty, depth, and the regenerative power of death and rebirth, advising us to gracefully release what no longer serves us. As the goddess of money as well as love, Venus’s long descent into the Plutonian underworld signifies that it may be too late to save the imploding economy. “The only ‘silver lining’ of the present crisis,” reads a recent flyer on the impending economic collapse, “is that we, the poor, the soon-to-be-poor, and the workers, are now thrown completely on our own to create an alternative to the present mad world.”
This is the kind of perspective we need to survive the “birth pangs” of stepping into the Aquarian Age. Returning to the Mars principle, the model of leadership is shifting. We can no longer wait around for someone or something to save us—whether it’s the Department of Homeland Security, the Second Coming of Christ, the Aliens, or the next MLK. The current crisis in leadership is a wake up call to each of us to take personal responsibility, and daily action, to co-create a NEW New World Order—one that actually serves humanity and planet Earth.
Emily Trinkaus, Virgo, is an astrologer, writer and peace activist residing in Portland. For information on individual readings, or to receive free bi-monthly Astro-Reports, email [email protected].