The first days of May carry a punch, leading up to the full Moon Lunar Eclipse on May 5th. We are now in the Mercury retrograde time, as Mercury approaches conjuncting the Sun on May 1st. As with all Mercury retrogrades, it is a time to review, reorganize, and reflect on where we have been, and where we’ve been hanging out in the mental realms. We find that by attuning to the rhythm of Mercury retrograde throughout the year, it encourages us to slow down, be contemplative, and be refreshed. With Mercury in Taurus we are best advised to reflect on what we value, and how we want to spend our time. We might review how we are manifesting our lives, and make adjustments. Mercury retrogrades from 15 Taurus to 5 Taurus. This is an area of your chart that’s calling for review before beginning anew.
In the Tarot, Taurus is affiliated with the Hierophant, the inner and/or outer teacher, and highlights the power of listening. Deeper listening may be one of the best gifts Mercury retrograde in Taurus has to offer. When Mercury conjuncts the Sun on May 1st, (see below), it begins a new cycle until the next retrograde when Mercury conjuncts the Sun on September 6th. It highlights the Taurian themes of how we are present to nature and the beauty of this natural world, as well as practical concerns in the world at large. It asks the question how are you manifesting your life? Are there things you would like to change? Pamela Eakins writes, “The Hierophant is a bridge between your outer experience and the way this experience is illuminated on the deepest inner level.” p. 277, Tarot of the Spirit.
The power of that question comes to a peak when the Lunar Eclipse takes place the morning of May 5, in Scorpio. May 4th carries the growing intensity of the eclipse and is an evening for ritual and reflection. The pair of fixed yin signs, Taurus and Scorpio, mark this time with their themes. Taurus highlights the themes of being fully present through our senses and values to the here and now, being grounded and honoring nature and our bodies, focusing on our values and self worth, and with Scorpio, the sign ruled by Pluto and Mars, we feel the intensity of unresolved feelings, emotional issues that bring up the complexity of feelings.
At a Lunar Eclipse the shadow of the earth falls on the Moon and darkens it. Metaphorically it is a time that we can be exposed to our own shadow material, or issues, or behavior from our past that needs reviewing. Lunar Eclipses accentuate our inner life, bringing up feelings, thought patterns, and memories. They offer the opportunity to be conscious about what is arising from within and to consciously search for deeper insight that can lead to new awareness and integration.
Those with planets in Taurus, can be affected by the Taurian/Scorpio eclipse cycle. Eclipses are powerful influencers of change when they aspect your planets. Events may escalate you toward a different future. Stay conscious to sudden events, that may feel dramatic or intense, something that may alter your plans as encouragement to more fully embody your destiny. Solar eclipses offer an opportunity to realign outer life with our internal subjective world, while Lunar Eclipses bring up the past, offering new levels of integration.
Uranus conjuncts the Sun and opposes the Moon during the eclipse. Expect the unexpected to show up. Uranus the change agent and the disruptor, shakes us up in order to broaden our experience of consciousness and our awareness of the constancy of change. “How can we be flexible and open what change brings to us?”
Pluto squaring the Nodes
With Pluto squaring the nodes over the next few months, we have entered a very powerful time of choice, action, and release around old issues, or profound feeling states, that call for transformation. Something very old confronts us for healing. It asks us, “What does power mean to us and how do we embody our power? Do we feel powerless?” The Taurus North Node asks us to be aware of being a spiritual, creative, and worthy being, in a body in a physical world, with creativity to manifest our choices. The South Node in Scorpio encourages the letting go of emotional compulsive and intense issues for regeneration and rebirth. Why hold on? These two signs bring out the poignancy of being human, the power of being creative, the power of living and loving and the power of letting go.
Taurus and Scorpio (paintings by Susan Seddon-Boulet)
Celestial Events for May
May 1 – Pluto goes retrograde – 1 Aquarius – (back to 27 Capricorn, direct Oct 10) – Pluto retrogrades for about 1/2 of the year. When any planet is ‘stationary retrograde’ its expression becomes more powerful. Pluto highlights themes of human experience of emotional depth and intense feeling, past experiences calling for resolution or release, our relationship to power and powerlessness, hidden issues coming to the surface, all for the sake of transformation.
May 1 – The Sun and Mercury retrograde conjunct at 11 Taurus – When Mercury is retrograde and conjuncts the Sun, it is seen as beginning a new cycle. Here Mercury listens to the Sun, picks up its message, and seeks to deepened it. Mercury, then brings out that message and theme until the next Mercury retrograde. This Sun Mercury conjunction takes place near change agent, Uranus, also known as the disruptor. Uranus is the energy that breaks us open to new horizons, stimulates revelation, and creative insight. Being in earthy Taurus, attunement to the Earth, and practical manifestation of insight and creativity are highlighted. This is a powerful combination to shake us up.
May 4 – Venus at 27 Gemini squares Neptune in Pisces, sextiles Jupiter in Aries – With Venus squaring Neptune, there’s a challenge between Venus in Gemini, and its need for social interaction and connecting through communication, with Neptune’s need to dream, imagine, and move into altered states, (creative or perhaps delusional). It’s a time to keep one’s feet on the ground and expand our empathy. With Venus sextiling Jupiter there’s energy to reach out, perhaps in new ways to new people for the benefit of growth.
May 5 – Lunar Eclipse – Full Moon at 14 Scorpio opposes Taurus Sun, 10:34 AM PDT – (see above), honor the deep emotional spaces you experience with equanimity, a steady state of awareness that observes the arising of emotions without reacting, bringing wisdom, understanding and integration. The Lunar Eclipse, especially in deep feeling and intense Scorpio, allows us the opportunity to release and transform obsessive or compulsive emotional reactions. It can offer us freedom from inner emotional turmoil, if we seek the deeper underlying causes and trauma of what is emotionally activated. The opposition from Uranus heightens the unexpected events that herald change and new perspectives.
The Lunar Eclipse
Affirmation for Lunar Eclipse in Scorpio
“May I compassionately hold the emotional issues that come up for deeper insight and integration. May I be guided in releasing binding experiences to activate transformation for the highest good and the highest consciousness”
May 7 – Venus enters Cancer – the planet of relatedness enters the sign of nurturing and emotional connection. Our relationships are nurtured with care and deeper bonds. Our sensitivities with each other are heightened. Time with family and those we love are sweetened, enjoyment of gathering, meals, and creating home.
May 9 – The Sun at 19 Taurus conjuncts Uranus – Uranus in Taurus brings disruption to the status quo, to the way we handle money, the way we relate and don’t relate to the Earth and environment. Uranus in Taurus wants to shakes us up to wake up to the interrelatedness of life, to cultivate new attitudes that are life sustaining. When the Sun conjuncts Uranus, we can watch for shake ups, sudden events, that get us to pay attention so we see and experience in new ways.
May 12 – Venus at 6 Cancer trines Saturn in Pisces – This is a time of commitment and enduring affection, organizing what we love, manifesting our creativity in grounded ways.
May 14 – Mercury goes direct at 5 degrees Taurus – Mercury in Taurus is ponderous and deep, wants to simplify and clearly articulate in order to reach others, or clearly think things through, in practical ways. Perhaps during the retrograde you took the time and saw what you wanted to manifest with more clarity and commitment. This review can lead to setting about in an organized and thoughtful way for future unfoldment.
May 16, 17 – Jupiter enters Taurus – Jupiter squares Pluto in Aquarius – Jupiter will be in Taurus from May 16 to May 23, 2024. The last time it was in Taurus was June 2011 – June 2012. It is interesting to review that time. What was growing? What was being manifest? Jupiter increases what it touches. In Taurus, Jupiter enlivens the sign with optimism, confidence, and exploratory means. It broadens Taurus’s fixity to bring new experiences and greater appreciation of nature. It asks us to enlarge upon what it is we value. Taurus also rules money, so can increase wealth and fiscal well being. How and where is Jupiter in Taurus activating your chart?
Jupiter squares Pluto as it enters Taurus. Pluto in Aquarius wants to transform the society or how we relate to each other, bringing up what has been hidden or ignored. Jupiter in Taurus wants to find enjoyment and pleasure, bring in well-being and harmony. These two needs conflict, but they enlarge and empower each other. They can drive the need to find better ways to be with each other and the Earth.
New Moon in Taurus
May 19 – New Moon at 28 Taurus, 7:54 am PDT – The new Moon in Taurus can be a time when we confirm and affirm, what we want to manifest in our lives. We might affirm bringing more abundance into our lives, being more in tune with nature, and our bodies. We might make a commitment to an environmental association, or increase our recycling. This is a powerful day as Mars is approaching the exact opposition to Pluto, (see below), squaring Jupiter and the North Node. (for more on this join Susan’s monthly astrology talk, May 5th, 9:30 am, on Zoom). Yet this New Moon trines Pluto and sextiles Mars, which means finding beneficial ways to transform and take action. And that can be our intention.
Affirmation for New Moon in Taurus
“May I honor beauty. May I be attuned to my senses and alert to the majesty of earth and sky and stars. May I create and manifest my world in tune with my high destiny.”
May 20 – Mars into Leo, opposes Pluto – Mars leaves sensitive Cancer and moves into confident, expressive, passionate Leo. As Mars journeys in Leo, until July 10th, it’s a time for leadership, creative self expression, and confidence in our decisions and actions. When it enters Leo, Mars opposes Pluto. It’s an initiation into Leo that has intensity. There could be power struggles or anger. So we are mindful to what arises and our choices in responding. Something old may return for resolution or release. We want to be aware of having good boundaries with consciousness around standing for ourselves. It can be a beneficial day for letting go.
May 20 – Sun into Gemini, trines Pluto, sextile Mars – The Sun enters airy Gemini, bringing a lighter energy, increasing our enjoyment of socializing and sharing ideas. Perhaps we can think of this time as finding possible solutions to old issues that need transforming.
May 22 – Mars at 1 Leo squares Jupiter in Taurus – As Jupiter aligns with Mars it increases its passion, reaction, courage and action. We might ask ourselves, “What would we like to take action on with confidence?” The downside to this aspect is overdoing or excessive extremes.
May 25 – Venus at 19 Cancer sextiles Uranus in Taurus – Here’s the day to break out of routine in relationship and do, or brainstorm, something new and inspiring. This is a day we balance between freedom and closeness.
May 28 – Sun at 6 Gemini squares Saturn in Pisces – When the Sun squares Saturn we do well to slow down and focus. Now we balance communication of ideas with depth of feeling. Taking time to feel into a situation helps us to know how we want to communicate or write about the emotional depths.
The Twelve signs for May: Sun and Rising Signs
Aries (Mar 20-Apr 19): Dear Aries, this Lunar Eclipse in Scorpio activates your sensitivity to the needs or psychology of others. It may feel complex or intense to feel the closeness with others. With Mars (your ruling planet) in Cancer your emotions are closer to the surface. Mars in square aspect to Jupiter in Aries, emphasizes the challenge for you, dear Aries, between the need for your own space and the need to emotionally bond with others. At the New Moon in Taurus on the 19th, there is a strong emphasis on the fixed earth sign, Taurus, as 5 planets are now gathered there. This highlights gathering yourself to yourself, taking time to feel into your needs, and what you would like to manifest in the next month. May 19-21, Mars opposes Pluto, squares Jupiter, as it enters Leo. We could imagine the need for equanimity, and steadiness as these days carry an intensity, perhaps something from the past coming up in a dramatic way. You can be alert to careful and conscious navigating. As Mars moves on, past the 21st, you gain confidence and the energy is supportive and in harmony with your intentions for forward movement. Keywords for May, “Slowing down and cultivating patience.”
Taurus (Apr 20-May 20): Dear Taurus, Happy Birthday! With the Sun, Mercury retrograde, the North Node, and Uranus all in Taurus, it’s a good time to sort out your different feelings and thoughts. These planetary bodies in your sign seek to disturb normal routines, and through self appreciation, encourage you to break through to another level. The Scorpio Lunar Eclipse challenges the holding pattern of Taurus. “Don’t budge me”, you say, “I’m comfortable”. And it is precisely the Scorpio energy, with its intensity of feeling within oneself and within relationship that can shift the Taurus into new perspectives, transformation, and self realization. Under this Moon those encounters are heightened. Be flexible and alert to deeper meanings, beyond the appearances of situations. Your planet, Venus soon to leave sociable Gemini and move into sensitive Cancer on 7th, brings a shift in your orientation. Emotional connection is a priority. Cherish those you care for. Have some friends for dinner. Jupiter enters Taurus on the 16th. Last time in Taurus was 2011-2012. There may be more abundance, appreciation, and enjoyment coming your way. The New Moon in Taurus takes place on the 19th. This is the New Moon to set your intention for the year ahead. So take time and space to reflect, regroup, revise, and set in motion the power of a thoughtful intention. Keywords for May, “Regroup and envision.”
Gemini (May 21-Jun 20): Dear Gemini, with Mercury retrograde and in Taurus, perhaps your quick moving energy has slowed to review, reflect, revise,, and ground an important task. Perhaps something has caused your normal plans to be detoured or changed. With the Lunar Eclipse in Scorpio, your house of daily routines, health, and work is intensified. The deep waters of Scorpio call to your busy Gemini mind to slow and reflect, to attend to your body and soul, or to perfect a piece of work you have been developing. With Jupiter moving into Taurus on the 16th, you begin a time of gathering and attuning to more imagination, soulful work, and your connection with the spiritual. When Mercury goes direct on the 15th, you feel as if the gates have opened, and all is go! The New Moon on the 19th, calls for a retreat, a quiet space to reflect before the Sun enters Gemini on the 20th, when its time for you to shine! Keywords for May, “Attend to body and soul.”
Cancer (Jun 21–Jul 21): Dear Cancer, the full Moon Lunar Eclipse falls in your house of creative self expression, children, play, and romance. You may receive insight about old behavior that needs to be updated. “Where or how would you like to share your love, your heart, and your creative expression?” Mars, now in Cancer, can give you more courage to pursue what you love and value. Venus is soon to go into Cancer on the May 7th through June 5th. This brings a tenderness and highlights emotional bonding with others, bringing out an enjoyable experiences. The New Moon in Taurus, on the 19th, falls in your house of friends, aspirations and future plans. What a sweet time to gather with friends, and nurture each other. Or align with group energy which initiates some new beginning for you. It is also a good time to tune into your goals and intentions for the year ahead. With the New Moon trining Pluto, releasing, transforming, and empowering are key words. Keyword for May, “Enjoyment.”
Leo (Jul 22 – Aug 22): Dear Leo, with the Lunar Eclipse falling in your house of family, home, and your inner foundations, you may become aware of an issue from the past that calls for resolution, or release. Under this eclipse, you may find yourself clearing, cleaning, and sorting in your home, letting go of things to simplify and clarify your life. Scorpio is such a great recycling sign! Some Leos may find this is a time of change in their work, or goals, with new opportunities presenting themselves, especially after the 16th. That’s when Jupiter lights up your house of career and social standing as it moves into Taurus. The New Moon in Taurus takes place on the 19th, just before Mars enters Leo on the 20th. Under this New Moon you can set your intentions for what you want to accomplish in your work life or goals you aspire toward. As Mars goes into Leo, it energizes you, activates courage and adventurous spirit, gives you confidence to express, and stand for yourself. Keywords for May, “Aspirations.”
Virgo (Aug 23-Sep 22): Dear Virgo, when the Sun is in Taurus it lights up your house of travel, consciousness expansion, and philosophy. Though Taurus is not known for being adventurous, here this earthy energy activates a Virgo wanderlust into Nature’s beauty and expansive vistas. At the lunar eclipse, the Scorpio Moon brings out fierce opinions, or clear seeing facts developed from deep investigations. Perhaps under the shadow of this eclipse, with Virgo’s ruling planet, Mercury, now retrograde, you might see things in a new light. There may be connections with siblings or neighbors that take place in new ways. With Mercury retrograde in ponderous Taurus until the 14th, your busy mind can take a break and enjoy the sights of spring. The New Moon takes place on the 19th, trining transformative Pluto, harmonizing with that which helps to transform habits, patterns, or tendencies, especially with the force and power of Mars aspecting Pluto that day. Set your intention for what you would like to transform! Keywords for May, “New insights and adventures.”
Libra (Sep 23-Oct 22): Dear Libra, as the planets align in Taurus they activate your natural tendencies to give pleasure and nurturing experiences to others in intimate ways. They emphasize how you may ground and support others. The Lunar Eclipse in Scorpio unveils the deeper Libra quality of strong feelings because of your involvement with others. Under this Lunar Eclipse it is important to value yourself, your talents, and the space you need for yourself in order to refresh your spirit. Your ruling planet, Venus, enters Cancer on the 7th bringing up themes of family and sensitivity, how you nurture those you love. The New Moon in Taurus, on the 19th, supports any and all the ways you wish to transform, any ways you wish to release the past and the worries that stretch across our unknown futures. With Pluto trining the New Moon and beginning a trine to the sign Libra, by releasing the old, and exploring what you do trust in will transform how you live your life. Keywords for May, “Let go. Trust.”
Scorpio (Oct 23-Nov 21): Dear Scorpio, its not easy to be a sensitive and daring Scorpio! A natural tendency will push you into uncomfortable terrain, for the sake of growth and transformation. Don’t you wish your mother had told you that!! Mars is one of your ruling planets, and Mars is the warrior up for a challenge, pushing toward the edges of comfort, in the effort to create renewal. This full Moon Lunar Eclipse takes place in Scorpio. Take good care of yourself this day, May 5th, for your sensitivities are heightened. Be thoughtful of interactions with others as something unexpected might catch you off guard. Then you will see an old pattern that you are ready to let go of. Mars, your ruling planet, is in Cancer until the 20th. Be good to yourself as all sensitivities are heightened. With the gathering of planets in Taurus, opposite your sign, there’s an emphasis on your relationship with others. Get a massage, dig in your garden, sing your heart out to your favorite song. This is the New Moon to set your intention for new patterns in relationship, an intention for partnership to be renewed with appreciation. Keyword for May, “Get Grounded.”
Sagittarius (Nov 22-Dec 20): Dear Sagittarius, Taurus energy, in which we have a gathering of planets at this time, has almost nothing in common with adventurous, freedom loving, passionate, and imaginative Sagittarius. Except, we could say, a love of nature and the good things in life. These Taurus planets gather in your house of the body, health, and routine, calling you to the practical things in your life, yoga, tai chi, and gardens, finding ways to align spirit and body. The Scorpio Lunar Eclipse takes place in your house of the transpersonal realms, the unconscious, and deep waters of the soul. Retreat on the day of the Eclipse, May 5th, meditate, journal, commune with your deep self, feel into the mystery in which we live. Your ruling planet, Jupiter, is at a change point, moving from a year long visit in another fire sign, Aries, to earthy, slowed down and practical Taurus. Take note if you notice a shift on May 16th and thereafter, a sort of calming of the intensity of doing. The New Moon takes place in Taurus on the 19th. Set your intention for taking care of your body and health! Keyword for May, “Enjoying my body.”
Capricorn (Dec 21- Jan 19): Dear Capricorn, with the gathering of earthy Taurus planets in your house of expression and embodiment of yourself, have confidence in how you shine to others and the ones you love. The full Moon, Lunar Eclipse, takes place in the house of hopes, friends, and belonging to something, (like a group), larger than just yourself. An attractive force radiates from you out to others. At the same time, you may be aware of an old behavior that is no longer sustainable for your growth. It’s a time of transformation. Your planet Saturn has just moved into Pisces, leaving its two Saturn ruled signs of Capricorn and Aquarius, where it has traveled since 2018. You may feel a lightening up. Saturn in Pisces wants to give form to your imaginative powers. What new life are you now dreaming into? The New Moon highlights a time that supports creative projects, leadership, children, and romantic love. Create your intention for the month ahead. What do you want to create? Keyword for May, “Confidence to create and heart felt love.”
Aquarius (Jan 20-Feb 17): Dear Aquarius, Pluto, now in Aquarius, is rumbling around in your basement, throwing up all the old things you no longer have use for. It’s message to you is, “Let go and be renewed. Finish up that old business, or release it’s hold.” The full Moon Lunar Eclipse highlights your house of career, or what it is you aspire to. A Lunar Eclipse is said to expose what is no longer working, giving you insight to past issues, now calling for resolution or release. Be alert to what arises on the 5th. Saturn, as one of your ruling planets, now travels through Pisces calling out to the poet in you. Your brilliant Aquarius mind integrates with your deep Piscean poetic soul. The universe loves this combination of the last two transpersonal signs, inspirational mind and deep soulful heart. The New Moon of the 19th takes place in your house of family, home, and ancestral lineage. It may be the time to rearrange your home, gather and host your family, or peer into the lineage of your people, gathering the wisdom that they pass on to you. Set your intention! The New Moon will carry it. Keywords for May, “Heart and Mind, Love and Revelation.”
Pisces (Feb 18-Mar 19): Dear Pisces, Taurus time of year is a nurturing time for Pisces. The two signs harmonize, with Taurus being both grounding and creating harmony and beauty, which resonates with Pisces’s tastes. It is said, about these elements, Earth holds Water and Water nourishes Earth. Let yourself be supported by a Taurus, as the Taurus planets now fall in your house of neighbors and connections with others. This placement is also known as the house of the Goddess, so enrich your soul, under the Taurus planets, with ritual and affirmation. With the Lunar Eclipse taking place in Scorpio, we are reminded that Scorpio is a kindred sign to Pisces. Both are deep, mysterious, and imaginative. Falling in your house of philosophy, consciousness, and travel, it might be a day for honoring what is sacred in your life, or reviewing that trip you are about to take. Is there a detail you have forgotten? Your ruling planet, Jupiter, shifts into Taurus on the 16th, and supports your travels, your writing projects, and all growth in communications. The New Moon on the 19th, supports your intentions to manifest that book, your poetry, your paintings, or communications in general. What are you dreaming of? Keywords for May, “Ground a dream”
Susan Heinz is a professional astrologer in Santa Cruz for 41 years, bringing together traditional & esoteric astrology, Tarot and Qabalah. For info on her Friday monthly astrology groups, her Qabalah, astrology and/or painting classes, and for personal readings, call (831) 479-3751, or go to www.susanheinz.co