August Transformational Astrology by Henry Seltzer

August 2011

by Henry Seltzer

The Astrology of August features once again the powerfully transformative energies of the outer planets Uranus, Neptune and Pluto, plus a Mercury retrograde period that accentuates the thoughtful and meditative nature of this important mid-summer time frame. The Leo New Moon that began this most recent Sun-Moon cycle in the ending weekend of July makes aspects to both Neptune and to Pluto, a yod formation, while continuing to emphasize the powerful and intensely close Uranus-Pluto square by also trining Uranus. Venus is conjunct the New Moon and closely trines Uranus, plus making strong aspects to Chiron and Pluto as well, so that our relationship energy will tend to be all over the map, with surprising and profound developments on all fronts.

When Mercury turns retrograde on August 2nd, it is in the beginning degrees of Virgo, directly opposite Neptune, making for a three-week period of the retrograde that will be more confused and mystical than usual. As Mercury drifts back into Leo, it will also eventually make a sesqui-yod to Uranus and Pluto, formed by two sesqui-quadrate aspects to each, and thus emphasizing once more the strong aspect between them. This perfects just as Mercury changes to direct motion on the 26th, so that the few days proceeding and following the Virgo New Moon of the 28th will be a particularly dicey time. Mercury leaves its retrograde shadow by September 9th.

This will be a supremely important and transformative as well as surprisingly insightful month, when many things in our lives could alter or begin to alter. This is because the Uranus-Pluto square – the primary outer planet collision that will become the hallmark for this turbulent decade – is still quite close to exact, being only a little more than a degree off, and is also aspected by both the New Moon of this month and the one at its end, which takes place on the 28th, at 5 degrees of Virgo, almost exactly trine to Pluto and inconjunct to Uranus.

Neptune too is a very potent energy in these August skies. Mercury remains opposed for the first two weeks of the month, bringing the mystical and nebulous nature of this otherworldly energy directly into the mix surrounding Mercury’s retrograde. At each lunation phase as well, the other personal planets Mars and Venus also make aspects to Neptune, as well as to Uranus and Pluto, thereby emphasizing all three. We’re in for a very interesting ride as we head into the fall season.

In all this there is opportunity as well as challenge, since we badly need to let go of the dead and dying past, of those unnecessary parts of ourselves that have outlived their usefulness and that are in effect holding us back from becoming a truer representation of the people that we need to be. The transformative powers of these outer planets are intended to help us by giving us the chance to transcend our former selves. We need to keep our heads on straight, or as straight as is humanly possible, in order not to miss that chance when it comes around.

ARIES (March 20-April 19). You are still heading over the waterfall in a bucket, Aries, but at least you are beginning to get used to it by now. Another powerful month for you brings mixed blessings of difficult but transformative energy. This is a contemplative rather than an action-oriented period of time, with Mercury retrograde in your self-expression sector. The pace of conceptual change accelerates but the action slows and the enormous pressure will not fully release until September. There are manic as well as down moments but the experience will in any case be enlightening. Surprises abound. Picking up the pieces and continuing to try to make sense of everything brings its rewards, eventually, as you begin to discern that different place where your life is now heading.

TAURUS (April 20-May 19).  Your life is a fluttering tapestry these days, Taurus, and the tapestry is in profound transition. What you want to be and do in the world depends more and more on how you see and appreciate yourself at center. You are in an important process of stripping away what doesn’t fit. Your sense of family is potent now, and also your sense of who you really are at the very core of your being. You inhabit these inner places more than outer ones. Deep within, you sense the turning wheels that signal a changing of the guard. Your world view might need to shift to accommodate these coming to you and through you, stemming from the innermost part of yourself.

GEMINI (May 20-June 20). Your transformation continues, Gemini, and even grows in its pace, although the time for concentrated action is delayed until at least the middle of the following month. Spiritual epiphanies provide occasions for greater intimacy. Your fullest potential is not yet realized, although the concept of what you are striving for is beginning to unfold during the course of this thoughtful and challenging present cycle. Communication with friends and loved ones is vital for you now, and helps you to better define your own position. Home and family could also be transforming in some way over the course of this important month. You are coming on strong but in invisible rather than mundane realms, as you speak your most basic truth, from your heart.

CANCER (June 21-July 20) You are redefining your values this month, Cancer, and your feeling for what it means to be alive on this earth. Current events have rocked your world, including your feelings toward family and tribe. Significant relationships in your life are also subject to abrupt alteration. What was a steady reliance on a way of life that you could always count on seems far less a sure thing and the only career factor that shines forth for you is the need for continual and sometimes even drastic change. This does not necessarily imply a new career or even a new job, but perhaps an entirely different way of looking at the existing one. You might be in the process of asking yourself to what extent does your career and professional life serve your soul development, rather than the reverse.

LEO (July 21-Aug. 21) These are exciting and even magical times for you, Leo, when you are coming on strong, and when also everything in your life is subject to dramatic adjustment. You have been inhabiting your world from an entirely compassionate place lately and this continues, even as you drive for career success and for a more powerful presence in your surrounding milieu.  Surprising epiphanies abound and lead you to a very different way of perceiving and believing. You are also morphing in your concept of what you want to be when you grow up. In your heart of hearts you are very sure that all this is leading up to something truly great and fundamentally transforming; the question now is what. The answers will come over time, and from within.

VIRGO (Aug. 21-Sept. 21) You are moving to the inside this month, Virgo. With your ruler Mercury running backward, a profound meditative sense overtakes you in which you are dreaming your life into new being. As you revision your possibilities over the course of this important monthly cycle, you are tending to let everything else in your life shut down in favor of inner development. Sudden epiphanies are more than likely, especially regarding old patterns of relating to others that no longer serve you. You will emerge from this tunnel of time ready to re-enter the battle with a refreshed viewpoint; older in experience and wiser in years compared to where you started.

LIBRA (Sept. 22-Oct. 22) You are voyaging into the unknown, Libra, although it is getting more familiar all the time. August is an interesting month, in some ways a continuation and in some ways a departure. You might have a difficult patch to get through over the first week or so, but the positive side is that circumstances will provide you with much food for thought and with plenty of impetus to keep moving forward. As you drift toward mid-month you are visioning your possibilities. You are in the process of forging a new life direction for yourself and in it is good to keep firmly in mind that this is your most important product. Your creativity is calling and it will let nothing, not even you, stand in its way

SCORPIO (Oct. 23-Nov. 21) This is a summer of metamorphosis, Scorpio. You are gradually drifting toward a new vision for yourself and your world and it begins with redefining your worldview. The changes might come at times rapidly and at times more slowly but they are definitely rolling and with the inevitability of a slow-moving freight train.  You benefit from framing everything into the largest possible picture. Your work in the world, perhaps entering a new phase, is also bound to be affected, as you navigate turbulent waters that do not allow you to see clearly, perhaps not until almost the middle of September. In the meantime watch and wait, and seize your chances when they present themselves.

SAGITTARIUS (Nov. 22-Dec. 20) An interesting year thus far is about to get even more interesting, Sagittarius. Your worldview is likely to undergo further visions and revisions, or perhaps a more thorough-going transformation, during the course of this month’s cycle, ultimately leading you to a better understanding of what makes you tick at soul-level. Deep reflective spaces open up that connect with your sense of mission in this lifetime. Although your ebullient nature makes it at times more possible to do outer work than inner, the convoluted and potentially confusing events of this month tend to pertain to the internal. You seek to be of true service to others but before you can be fully present in that role you must first become your own advocate in being of true service to yourself.

CAPRICORN (Dec. 21-Jan. 19) It’s a hard road you’re traveling these days, Capricorn, but it might be even harder to refuse the challenge and attempt to avoid any issues that continue to come up. You could be feeling a bit lost at sea as you struggle to find your way in an alien world where the rules of the game keep rewriting themselves. Your changes are in fact only just beginning, as difficult as that might be to imagine, and this monthly cycle provides one more chapter in your on-going saga, and rather a contemplative one at that. Your attempts at thinking yourself out of your dilemma, while admirable, will only take you halfway there. Sooner or later, and perhaps by the end of summer, you will have to jump in with both feet.

AQUARIUS (Jan. 20-Feb. 17) You are at an interesting cross-road, Aquarius. You are contemplating eternity in the specifics of day-to-day life on this planet and exercises in partnership interaction. Everything is fuzzy and vague, and yet somehow brings you closer to understanding yourself at the core. You are getting used to the notion that relationship can be fun even if you fail to commit yourself to any one course of action.  By mid-month you will have found a dozen ways to see the bigger picture and the amazing fact is that all of them have a certain degree of validity. It’s an excellent time to dwell in the paradox and to renew your vow never to push the river. It takes you at the very least until mid-September to even begin to sort things out.

PISCES (Feb. 18-March 19), It’s getting to that point, Pisces. You are feeling compelled to find out what it takes to be all that you can be. Your future is calling, and you’re doing the research. This could involve taking another look at partnerships in your life, how they help or hinder the arc of your own development, and could also have implications for refining your concept of where you are in your life right now versus where you need to be. Ideas continue to pour into your brain, and your resistance to them is slowly beginning to melt away. The time for action has not yet arrived, for this month is mainly one of preparation. That time is fast approaching however and then you’re headed over the waterslide.

Henry Seltzer, transformational astrologer and creator of the TimePassages astrology software, is based in Santa Cruz, California. An extended look at this month’s star signs is available on his website. Holding degrees from MIT and the University of California-San Diego, Henry is a popular speaker and also offers life enhancing private astrological counseling. Call him at 831-425-3686, or visit his website at

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