Yesterday I went to an amazing workshop on Jupiter and faith, run by British astrologer Derek Hawkins. Derek uses experiential astrology - he lays the chart out on the floor, and you stand in it, holding the wooden planetary symbols. And you do - really - feel the energy of the planets.
Much discussion and reflection on what having Jupiter/chiron conjunct in my 11th house of friends, trine Neptune in the 6th, means for me. Compassion, mediumship and loving friendship, but also the need to consciously protect myself from the negative energies projected by others. The need to be responsible with the sensitivity I've been given, responsible to myself, and to create appropriate structures to protect myself.
And the blessing too, of someone on the workshop who may be able to help me do that. Plus a lunchtime meeting with a friend who I last saw at a friend's baby's baptism, where she and I talked about my search for faith and truth. Jupiter in the 12th brings guardian angels, apparently.
And it was great fun too - Jupiter rules joy, after all!
A great way, in the company of old and new friends, to assimilate the energy of Jupiter and reflect on its gifts it will leave for me as it moves on to Aries.
A strong image is appearing of a comforting and roaring log fire, in a house by a stream, with a field of crops and flowers behind it. It doesn't get many visitors, but my heart (Moon) lives there. Welcome to my 12th house - Aries "intercepted", a full sign contained within the house, which has Pisces on the cusp, and leads to a late Taurus ascendant. Mars the warrior and gardener stands guard on the edge of the field, a hoe in one hand, a sword in the other. Ready both to provide and protect. Just behind my rising degree, he slips in and out of the shadow of a tree, now visible, now not. Jupiter and Uranus now in my 12th, illuminating and giving me perspectives I've never had before.
First house - a tiny meadow, with a huge sky full of scudding clouds. Gemini Mercury darting in and out of a tree canopy, flashes of quicksilver in the sun. Snatches of questions on the breeze - "What if .." "why?" "why not?" "can I help you?"
Second house - a stiff and quite chilly breeze on the beach, a hazy Sun, still struggling to come out fully. It's trying its hardest to sparkle on the water. In the edge of view, Juno and Ceres, colluding quietly, wanting to sunbathe but not yet daring to bare all, each with a steaming coffee to warm their hands
Third house - an expanse of sea with whitecaps and the moon rising over it, casting a path home for lost travellers. A fishing boat with white sails follows the path to a safe harbour. Seagulls feeding on scraps.
Fourth house - Venus in Leo standing shivering by a roaring fire on the beach, having just risen from the watery depths of the Imum Coeli. She's waiting for someone to appear to put a purple velvet cloak around her, and invite her to a party. She wants to command attention, but she's not sure how. She may just have to make the first move, put on her own cloak, and start the party herself. She can kick off by inviting Terpsichore - standing right next to her - to teach her how to dance. Joni Mitchell's "All I Want" - "do you wanna dance with me baby, do you wanna take a chance on some sweet romance with me baby, well come on ..."
Fifth house - there's a party in full swing further down the beach, but with only one guest. Uranus doing his own electric dance, drinking champagne from the bottle, drawing spiky weird pictures in the sand and then standing with his head on one side, watching the sea rub them out. Then he does cartwheels, to see what other sand patterns he can make with his fingers and toes. Further up the beach, on dry land, on the edge of a deep cave in the rocks, Pluto sits like a brooding artist, fashioning an intricate sand sculpture, not sure whether to make himself visible. Continually destroying and restarting his creation, he's already more visible than he knows. No-one can ignore a rumbling volcano.
Sixth house: Rocky shingle on the edge of the cave. Virgo guarding my 6th house cusp. Sharp under the feet, and then larger rocks, with sharp edges, and tiny outcrops of delicate plants nestling and distracting the eye. Minutely detailed etchings on the rockface, and intricate fern-like fossils. One detail leads to another, and none can be ignored. Libra, justice and balance, is here somewhere if only I can find her.