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Gardner Symons ‘The First Snowfall’ c1920 {{PD}}

Mercury stations direct in Sagittarius (at 13 degrees, even!). The turnaround points are typically tense; we want to act, as we sense things are changing. We may even sense that our way of processing events is changing, precipitating an urge to act or come to conclusions while we are still ‘ourselves’. There may be a wee panic; am I losing my mind, are people keeping things from me, are my beliefs failing me, what don’t I know? (those last two particularly appropriate for Mercury in Sagittarius) This time Merc changes apparent direction without making any super-close aspects, and since it moves relatively slowly after direction, we require a very close shave to call them significant. We’ll likely feel the shift in matters of the House holding Sag–something will become clearer, or will be apparent–and in the matters of the Houses Mercury rules. Best to give things a day or two before going forward. That tension that can make us want to hurry can cause as much of a warp to perceptions as can the actual retro period, so allow a little time to pass, before going forward.

Today we also see Pluto sextile Vesta, suggesting that highest values, what we honor, what we find sacred may undergo change, possibly from what we learn on the Merc direction, and Jupiter semi-squares Saturn, implying some discord between beliefs and reality, or the social sphere and restrictions (or again, the reality of things), or between what we know and what we see in front of us. This, too, may contribute to the changes to what we value, as we parse the facts and the real-world situation.

Yesterday was the Solstice, the day in the Northern Hemisphere when daylight is shortest, while in the Southern Hemisphere it marks the longest stretch of daylight–so, important everywhere, not astrologically, but symbolically; in winter it suggests a renewal of hope. We’ve seen the ‘darkest day’, and now the light will steadily increase, and as light-sensitive Beings we respond to that positively. We instinctively feel we are safer in the light–and ‘staying in the light’ does, in so many ways, keep us from harm.

Today’s word image is sunlight on the pines, on a very cold day. Take a moment, visualize this (or whatever scenario in nature you find peaceful). Can you smell the cedar, hear the bird song, feel the sun on your skin? Make sure to allow yourself and others time for such pauses in the coming weeks–we’ll all feel better for it.

John Constable {{PD}}

Remember that cloud of healing energy that we formed during the Eclipse years, specifically as an energy ‘bank’ on which those who needed it could draw? Just a reminder that it’s still there, available if you need it–and open for deposits, if you’d like.