NeptuneWe’re in the midst of a tumultuous Eclipse Season, and the pressure is building as we approach the Lunar Eclipse on June 15, and as the planets in the Cardinal Grand Cross move into tighter formation.

Jessica Murray, in her latest lecture (Something’s Happening Here) describes eclipses as “portals of human consciousness, a natural blowing of the mind.” Comparing Eclipse Season to an acid trip, she says, “If your awareness is already in a good place, you can explode into an altered state of vision. If you’re shut down at the time, you may not do so well.

Helping us shift in the direction of a more enjoyable trip, Jupiter — principle of expansion, faith and optimism — is now forming a harmonious sextile (60-degree angle) with Neptune and Chiron in Pisces. Jupiter’s sextile to Neptune is exact today (7:39pm PDT), though the influence has been in effect all week and will continue to linger into next week.

Neptune, God of the Ocean, rules the invisible, mysterious realm of dreams, imagination and higher consciousness, and Jupiter expands what he touches, increasing our sensitivity to subtle states of awareness. While global crises escalate, we may be able to access the deeper meaning behind these outer-world events, imagine a new vision for the future, and find the spiritual strength to keep moving forward.

Jupiter just recently entered Taurus (see Jupiter Enters Taurus), amplifying the grounded, earthy, pragmatic energy of this sign. Jupiter in Taurus cooperating with Neptune in Pisces wants to give form and substance to spiritual ideals, to build a solid foundation for translating higher visions into physical reality.

chironJupiter’s sextile to Chiron — a longer-term influence, exact on July 2, December 6 and February 14 — further supports this potential. Barbara Hand Clow calls Chiron the “rainbow bridge” between spirit and matter, and writes that Chiron sextile Jupiter “adds great manifestation powers” (Chiron: Rainbow Bridge).

Eric Francis of Planet Waves writes about the Jupiter-Chiron sextile:

“You could say this is the perfect connection between the ‘spiritual’ and the ‘material’ — though you have to admit, any planet where mold spontaneously grows in the basement and where critters are found on the bottoms of the oceans and the tops of mountains is pretty spiritual to begin with.” (Jupiter in Taurus)

As we approach this first exact sextile between Jupiter and Chiron — coinciding with the Cancer Solar Eclipse on July 1 — clarify the vision you want to birth into form. Dreams, intuition and synchronicities are speaking loudly now, offering clues to your soul’s longing. The Solar Eclipse, which activates the initiatory energies of the Cardinal Cross, will be an incredibly potent time for new beginnings.

Waking up from Wonderland

“If we wish to stop the atrocities, we need merely to step away from the isolation. There is a whole world waiting for us, ready to welcome us home.” – Derrick Jensen

piscesAs with all astrological influences, even the ones considered “positive,” there’s also a potential shadow expression. “Jupiter-Neptune is prone to what can only be called Big Illusions,” writes Sue Tompkins (Aspects in Astrology). Neptune in Pisces can have a lulling, soporific effect, and Jupiter’s added optimism can translate into, “it’ll be okay, honey, just go back to sleep.”

The dominant culture encourages denial and delusion (shadow Neptune/Pisces), especially when it comes to our relationship with the physical world (Taurus). We live in what Thomas Berry calls “Wonderland” and Derrick Jensen refers to as “The Culture of Make Believe” — the fantasy that the Earth’s resources are unlimited and infinitely exploitable, that an ever-expanding economy is desirable and healthy, that the destruction of wilderness has nothing to do with us, that we humans are unaffected by the suffering of other living beings.

But living in this fantasyland takes its toll on the soul level, as evidenced by the astounding rates of depression and addiction, even and especially in the “first world.” Chiron in Pisces brings to awareness and calls for healing the pain of living this lie of disconnection, the soul sickness that characterizes the modern world. As I wrote in a previous post: The ultimate Pisces lesson is that we are all one, and yet we live in a culture that enforces the illusion of the separate self.

Chiron is “stationing” today — appearing to stand still in the sky before turning Retrograde — magnifying the energy of this planet, and focusing attention on wounds of separation. While Chiron is Retrograde, until November 10, we have the opportunity to uncover the root of these wounds, to reconnect with the parts of ourselves we have disowned, to reclaim our place of belonging within the greater whole.

The sextile from Jupiter in Taurus to Chiron in Pisces suggests that this healing can happen through connection with the physical world. By slowing down and taking time to enjoy sensual pleasure, nurture our bodies, care for the planet, cultivate gardens, appreciate natural beauty…, we reanimate the magic of the material realm, recover faith in our own sensory experience and reenter the miracle of ordinary, earthly existence.

– Emily Trinkaus