Your Stars July 2018

Cancer FotoliaIt’s eclipse season. July sees two eclipses with a third arriving in August.

The partial solar eclipse of the Sun at the new Moon of July 13 is no great shakes (unless that’s your birthday, in which case it is), but the total eclipse of the Moon on July 27 looks like a game changer for many of us, especially birthdays then and January 24.

What’s more, since the eclipse will be visible for large parts of Europe, Asia and Australia, a lot of people will be wondering – what does it mean for me (obviously not astronomers, bless them, who get rightly animated by eclipses while maintaining they mean nothing whatsoever).

The partial solar eclipse on August 11, by contrast, is invisible to any but those in the extreme North.

That the lunar eclipse is next to Mars adds some astrological drama, the implications of which are considered in the forecasts below.

Invisible but still potent is the retrograde of communications planet Mercury from July 26. Mercury Retrograde has entered popular parlance as a frustrating three weeks, and so it can be, but a world where there was never a go-slow would surely be far worse. Providing you cling tightly to your travel tickets, late July and early August are a perfect time to dawdle a while.

Cancer

You look to be on cruise control until mid-month, though late June birthdays may be dealing with the aftermath of the full Moon of June 28. As pointed out last month, Saturn in opposition is disinclined to do you many favours, and the ringed planet will be re-asserting its hard-nosed agenda come autumn. The message: mend the roof while the Sun shines (you can take that quite literally). Lean and mean is the style you are after.

The new Moon of July 13 could be a game-changer, however, especially if that’s your birthday. Not only is this a partial solar eclipse, but it’s opposite spooky Pluto, suggesting – for birthdays then or close by – a battle for survival at worst, an underhand enemy/partner, or a protracted period of transformation (phoenix from the flames!). Pluto is a planet of disappearances (think of Hermione disappearing into the underworld in the Pluto myth) so here is a good moment to despatch an association that has run its course.

All Cancerians should take heart from ‘lucky’ Jupiter. The giant planet is lovingly aligned in fellow water sign Scorpio until November, and after a few months in retrograde rumbles forwards once more from July 11, offering an upbeat mood and splendid company, perhaps a summer romance for those looking. That Venus spends most of July in Virgo (from the 10th) helps your chances. Even if you are not looking, acquaintances and fellow travellers promise to be a source of support.

Long term partnerships may also benefit from Jupiter’s freewheeling touch – given the ongoing presence of Saturn and Pluto in opposition, rediscovering your romantic mojo is a better idea than endless anguish.

The total eclipse of Cancer’s ruling celestial body, Luna, falls across your ‘scope’s financial axis, less a signal for your savings to disappear than to reconsider your fiscal set-up anew, and since Mercury will be in reverse mode in the same zone from late in the month, to trawl once more through your spread sheets and bank statements. Happy Birthday.

Leo

With a pair of eclipses looming across your skies, the Leo birthday month looks quite a handful – more of which anon – but even before the Sun reaches the Lion on July 22, you are juggling a potent mix of planets.

On the easy side comes Venus, in your skies until July 9, allowing you to bask in leonine glory, while Mercury, with you all month, urges you to nail down arrangements with precision and haste, before the communications planet goes into retrograde mode on July 23, after which go-slow and calling on Plan B takes over. Clear the desk!

Also helpful is Jupiter’s return to forward motion from July 11, especially if domestic arrangements – maybe even a relocation – have been snagging you. Push steadily on, keeping that retrograde Mercury in mind.

The tricky stuff comes in assorted forms, with July’s birthdays most prominent (though not exclusively) in the frame. Mars in opposition is the obvious culprit for those of you finding yourself in conflict with partners and foes (the same thing sometimes!). Here your best strategy is to disengage as much as possible; there’s not a great deal of mileage in figuring out other people, since these are likely to blow hot and cold across summer and early autumn. Self-reliance is the order of the day.

The arrival of your Sun ruler on July 22 should make the last point clear. The Sun in Leo is, of course, the cue for an exhibition of feline power, joy and big-heartedness, mere narcissism being the flip, negative side of that trio. The total eclipse of the full Moon on July 27 promises a memorable weekend – the eclipse is visible across much of Europe – but may shake up (or dissolve) one association. If so, there’s little point trying to cling on. For others, the eclipse may bring a bolt from the blue love affair or a an equally unexpected development at work – the eclipse aligns precisely with planet Prometheus at the peak of your ‘scope.

Virgo

In the unlikely event that your scrupulous professionalism be called into question, be assured that your sidekicks around the office water cooler are at hand to back you. Fellow travellers and work associates are a key part of July’s action, with the new Moon of the 13th promising a re-start in your working life. Push on, bearing in mind that the retrograde cycle of your Mercury ruler that kicks in on July 27 is better for reviewing the past than unveiling new plans.

The total eclipse of the full Moon on the same day, which falls in your zone of workaday life, carries much the same message, perhaps obliging you to go over old ground. This, too shall pass, though it may take until your birthday month before you shrug off a feeling that you are locked into Groundhog Day, workwise.

Happily, your horoscope offers other reasons to be cheerful. Venus in your skies from July 10 (until August 6) is a cue to stop sweating the small stuff at work – a bit of a vice, let’s face it – and instead launch a charm offensive, take off on holiday (a last minute or unexpected break is in favour), or simply mooch around looking cool and glamorous.

Affairs of the heart also respond to Venus’ touch – this is the planet of romance – with the caveat that any ‘in love with love’ feelings should come tempered with a touch of hard-nosed realism. In other respects this is normally your forte, but with Neptune in opposition, feelings of duty – or downright deception from a partner – may blur the lines, especially around the 24th, when Venus opposes Neptune. A good time to tumble into an affair, but rose-coloured glasses need to be removed first.

Libra

Mood swings are a given for many Librans – month to month, week to week, day to day, even hour to hour – and you can be forgiven a little volatility in your emotional life now that Mars is in retreat, the planet occupying the zone of courtship and pleasure. A total eclipse of the Moon alongside Mars on July 27 may stop those damn Scales swinging and bring calm but don’t count on it. The red planet will be back here in September to taunt and excite you anew.

Excitement there is, with the full Moon eclipse of July 27 falling precisely on that errant Mars, suggesting certain favoured individuals may fall from – or return to – grace. Maybe it’s them who are unable to make up their minds – if so, you may have to wait until Mars straightens up and flies right later in the summer. Meanwhile, there is plenty to play for, especially early in the month when your ruler Venus is enlivening the social whirl, and blurring lines between friendship and amour.

You can’t survive on feelings alone, of course. The new Moon of July 13 – a partial solar eclipse – reminds you (as if needed) that family and job need your input to stay secure, and – with the new Moon lining up nicely with Jupiter – that there are opportunities to make extra cash. The meat and potatoes side of life – or tofu and quinoa if that’s your style – looks open to your intervention this summer. The situation may not be so amenable come your birthday season – plan ahead.

Another reason to get house, home and status in order is the retrograde of Mercury on July 26 – not a transit that’s a life changer, just potentially annoying, though perfect for chasing up lost friends and people whose number you didn’t take down correctly.

Scorpio

Big ideas and new frontiers are the province of ‘lucky’ Jupiter, and the giant planet moving forwards this month in your skies is just what the doctor – or in this case the astrologer – ordered. Birthdays circa November 8 may feel that the brakes have finally come off. Jupiter is with you through to your birthday so make the most of the coming months. That doesn’t mean blind optimism, but a shrewd eye on the main (or minor) chance, and the confidence that you are up to any challenge thrown your way.

The Sun in watery Cancer and the new Moon in the Crab on July 13 underline the message, with waxing Luna in your skies over the weekend of the 21st promising something special; dancing in the street with an attractive arrival would fit the picture.

The important thing is not to feel stuck. Scorpio, a ‘fixed’ sign, is constant and rarely flaky but the line between being stalwart and downright stubborn is a thin one, and for the most part the cosmos is urging you to unbuckle and, yes, dance a little. If you are an October birthday or born in 1975 or 1976, planet Prometheus is urging, or even enforcing, a fresh chapter, especially where partnerships are concerned.

As pointed out last month, your ruler Mars is in less frisky mood. The red planet’s backslide across the root of your ‘scope may be merely a matter of a plan being called into question, or some seemingly endless hassle involving Chateau Scorpio. If so, be prepared to put said plan on hold across the summer (you have other options to pursue), or proceed with painstaking attention to detail. The imminent retrograde of communicator Mercury – from July 23 for three weeks – is another reason for a go-slow, as is the total eclipse of the Moon next to Mars on July 27.

The go-slow may, of course, involve a partnership, but this is not the primary message being flagged up. Au contraire, fair Venus zipping through your eleventh house – the zone of friends and companions – is all about seeing and being seen. Circulate.

Sagittarius

Mind on the past or the future? Your undisputed ruling planet, Jupiter, continues to linger behind the scenes in Scorpio, a zone of secrecy and retreat in your solar chart and also one concerned with the past. On July 11, however, the giant of the cosmos rumbles forwards ready to land in the Centaur’s skies come your birthday. As much should unblock any patterns in which you have been caught up over spring and early summer, especially given a helpful alignment with the Sun.

The partial solar eclipse that accompanies the new Moon on July 13 falls in the zone of finances, which doesn’t mean your hard-won earnings are about to disappear in a puff of smoke, but when, like that of July 13, it is opposite Pluto, it does suggest you refrain from buying into a Bit-Coin pyramid scheme or making big ticket purchases. Saturn and Pluto in your cash zone are about prudence.

As ever, the season of Leo is helpful (fire for your fire), whether it’s romance and sociability – Venus is here until June 10 – or to rouse your spirit of adventure. A total lunar eclipse at the full Moon of July 27 should hold no terrors, just the chance to recalibrate plans, especially since Mercury goes retrograde at the same time, perhaps returning you to former times and old chums/ex’s.

Venus at the peak of your ‘scope from July 11 asks for a high profile in your career, but the key word there is ‘asks’ – given the zone of far horizons and high minded pursuits is in full swing, the green planet may not get a reply.

Capricorn

The Mountain Goat is, famously, a survivor above all else, but the terms and conditions under which you continue to thrive may be about to change. The partial solar eclipse at the new Moon of July 13 is opposite Pluto (in mega long term residence in the Goat’s skies) is one reason for a rethink (birthdays January 10 take note), and another the slow-down of ruler Saturn in your sign. Neither transit offers you much in the way of an easy ride where property and work are concerned – your customary focus (and a bit extra) is called for, keeping in mind that autumn promises push will come to shove.

You might, furthermore, choose to get the willies about the total lunar eclipse of July 27, which falls in the financial zone of your ‘scope. It’s unlikely to mean your bank card getting eaten alive at the cash point, but again, a revision of where and to whom the loot is going – including how your beloved other half or ex is treating the joint account – is recommended.

Practicalities aside, July’s stars brim with good cheer. Jupiter, which resumes forward motion at mid-month, brings support from your social network right through to November. The simultaneous move of Venus into earthy Virgo smiles on summer romances (or the plain old existing kind). On both counts you can call in favours and pursue prospective partners, even across oceans. Pleasure trips and arty events fold nicely into the picture.

The wild card in the planetary pack is Prometheus. The planet of revolution and revelation, newly arrived in kindred earth sign Taurus, is eager to tear a few pages in the script, notably for birthdays around Christmas. Steady as she goes, of course, but even you are allowed to take the odd risk.

Aquarius

Some of you, notably but not exclusively January birthdays, are likely to feel that things – people, decisions – are coming at you from all sides just now. Warrior Mars sliding backwards in your skies – and we are talking decades since that happened – is a tricky beast to master, especially when the red planet is caught up in a total eclipse like that of July 27, when the full Moon is eclipsed next to Mars in the Urn Bearer.

That may prove something of a hinge in your year, with another eclipse arriving in August. Partnerships, friendships and open enemies need careful handling. Mars disappears from your skies next month, reappearing in September, so one clue how to deal with disputes is simply to postpone decisions until summer is through, especially since communicator Mercury – in opposition throughout July and August, is through its retrograde phase between July 26 and August 19. Let the ‘silly season’ be your ally.

Another way you can handle things is to play catch-up with people who have slipped off your radar, some of whom may be surprisingly attached to your life mission (the lunar nodes are destiny-oriented). Ex’s are included.

New faces are part of summer’s scenario, however, what with Prometheus – your modern ruling planet according to many astrologers – lodged at the root of your ‘scope, a transit that may also include some drastic make-overs of your living arrangements.

Perhaps against the apparent odds, you have a powerful ally in your career, with Jupiter moving forward on July 11 after a few months of dithering. These are early days, but for the rest of 2018 and beyond, the giant planet is asking for a high profile and an audience with the so-called great and good of your profession. In the short term comes the new Moon of July 13 in your work zone to reboot your everyday routine. Stay busy.

Pisces

You begin July with a triangle of planets in water signs (Jupiter/Neptune/Sun), a sweet omen for ease of the soul, as well as for leaving the house (leaving the country in fact) and enjoying good company. The new Moon in Cancer on July 13 (a partial solar eclipse) is a similarly beneficial omen, a cue to follow your heart, especially since Venus opposite you from July 10 promises some head-turning temptation for singletons, and for all of you the chance to make peace with anyone with whom you are on the outs.

Most of July’s stars have a similarly obliging message, as planets in earth and water signs promise what Jamaica calls ‘cool runnings’. Socially, including your work team, you look in good shape, with fresh faces around to inspire you. A new skill-set, likely technological, may well be a further part of the summer’s developments.

Snags? A few, of course! The Sun’s shift into fiery Leo on July 23 and the subsequent total lunar eclipse of July 27 jangle the mind-body-spirit axis of your ‘scope, and with a retrograde Mars next to Luna, anguish may be involved (Mars is rarely about ease).

Mind, body and spirit is not just some trinity dreamed up by a new-age guru but a fact of life – mens sana in corpore sano as the Roman poet Juvenal advised back in the day. Eclipses are moments when the energy flow, the light, is interrupted, and you can use this one to rid yourself of a hang-up from the past, and/or to streamline your mental and bodily health. Mars is going backwards, and with resolve the less palatable elements of your history can likewise slip away. That Mercury also turns backwards on July 27, for three weeks, is a further cue to refine and revise your workday routines and chores rather than plough on regardless.

Aries

Quick, slow, quick, slow…the stars are leading you on something of a dance through this summer. The impersonal stuff comes first; the new Moon in Cancer on July 13, a partial solar eclipse, briefly questions your domestic set-up but as importantly asks you to set your career path for later in the year, once Saturn has turned to forwards motion at the peak of your ‘scope. The Moon is opposite slow-moving Pluto, also in your career zone, so think long-term and think how you can wring maximum prestige from your current situation.

Think, too, how you can gain financially. That Jupiter, a money planet, resumes forwards motion in your zone of finances is an encouraging omen, and one that gathers momentum as you move through the next few months.

Planets in Leo always favour the Ram, and Venus here until July 10 smiles upon your creative and romantic adventures. As much is often the case in high summer but rarely do you get a couple of eclipses too. The lunar eclipse of July 27involves your ruler Mars and suggests you change gear in your personal life, perhaps to catch up with a missed date, or to lose a bothersome personage. This is not necessarily a romantic attachment, as the eclipse falls in your zone of networking and office politics. Whether it presage a step change in your career remains to be seen – once Mars return here in mid-September you should be able to discern the fall-out from any dramas later this month.

The Sun’s subsequent parade through Leo, as always, favour levity and adventure, although Mercury’s backslide through the Lion from the 26th to August 19 is just as keen on the familiar and old chums (including old flames) as on sailing off into the unknown.

Taurus

The astrological Bull is the first of the zodiac’s four ‘fixed’ (intensifying) signs, along with Leo, Scorpio and Aquarius. Think of them as the four points of the compass. Currently all four signs host major planetary activity, forming what astrologers call a Grand Cross, though that’s Grand meaning imposing rather than jolly nice. 

The cross grows more forceful over July and August, with the total lunar eclipse of July 27 a moment to watch for. The eclipse is at the very peak of your ‘scope, the place where you are most visible to the world (usually via your career), and is next to Mars, and could prove an earth shaker in terms of your reputation being lit up – hopefully for all the right reasons!

With a further, solar, eclipse due in August, career and family/home are likely to prove the most arduous aspects of Taurean existence. Mars is sliding backwards, suggesting you can make adjustments at work, while Mercury also turning retrograde at the end of July is a further cue to adjust and modify rather than march determinedly on. How you run your household may be a priority now, say by moving lodgers and flatmates in and out of Taurus Towers.

With planet Prometheus in your own skies, you might care to go for a reshape of your profile, especially if your birthday is circa April 20/23.

The last planet in the Grand Cross is Jupiter, opposite you in Scorpio. The giant planet moves forwards mid- July, after a few months of backslide, re-animating your partnership sector, bringing clarity to troubled partnerships and/or introducing you to a swell type. If you have been stuck in relationship mud, here’s a chance to escape, one way or another.

Socially, your ‘scope mostly looks sweetness and light. The new Moon in Cancer on July 13 coincides with ruling planet Venus moving into the pleasure and romance zone of your horoscope; perfect for summer days sipping cocktails on the veranda or for showing off your moves at the discotheque. Venus only comes this way once a year so, as they say, shake a tail feather.

Gemini

Hmmm, complicated, though not so complicated as to cause you undue stress. The first item on the astrological agenda is a new Moon in Cancer on July 13. This arrives bang opposite Pluto and across the financial axis of your ‘scope. As suggested last month, you may choose to shake down your arrangements to ensure a more just division of assets between yourself and your spouse/ partner in the money laundering operation (delete as applicable). Pluto can be a ruthless energy, but that doesn’t mean you have to follow suit.

More complex is the activity across another axis of your ‘scope, that concerned with communications, travel, learning, teaching, campaigning and legal issues. A total lunar eclipse here at the full Moon of July 27 suggests a revision of your plans in any of those areas. You are, as ever, open to new ideas and can change direction quicker than a world cup striker. The eclipse coincides with your ruling planet, Mercury, moving into retrograde mode for three weeks. This is often an irksome spell, and you should certainly try to nail down arrangements in the first three weeks of the month – no lost passports or misplaced boarding passes please.

On the positive side, Mercury’s backslide allows you to return to unfinished business, stalled projects, lost contacts, half-understood subjects, missed lessons and suchlike. Or, alternatively, not to do much more than take a break.

Venus in Leo until July 10 should keep your social wheels humming early in the month. Thereafter the green planet moves across the root of your ‘scope into your zone of home and hearth, handy if you plan to overhaul the homestead, especially as it is moving alongside asteroid Ceres, signifier of the homemaker.

Career? Neptune remains high in your ‘scope, as it will do for years to come, but the planet receives helpful aspects from the Sun early in the month, and from Jupiter throughout. If you want fame, you are beckoned seductively on.

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