Eclipses are spooky events, seen by ancient cultures as not-normal, though they really are. They come in pairs, twice a year when a New Moon or Full Moon occur close to the points where the Moon’s orbit intersects the apparent path of the Sun. There will be a New Moon in Scorpio on October 25 at 3:49 a.m. on the U.S. West Coast. A solar eclipse will be visible in parts of Europe, Asia and North Africa, with the apex of the eclipse occurring at about 4 a.m.
An eclipse in Scorpio is extra spooky, coming at the end of October. In pagan traditions, this is a time when “the veils between the worlds” are said to be thin. The boundaries between conventional, material reality and the hidden realms of personal and collective consciousness are not so clear. Secular commercialism has turned late October into a heyday of costumes-and-candy. In Nature, though, it’s a quieting time of decay and underground ferment, before the frost comes. The realities of death, literal and otherwise, start coming to the surface right about now.
Scorpio is the fixed water sign. It has dual rulers: traditionally, Mars, and in modern astrology, Pluto. Mars is action. Pluto is power. Scorpionic qualities in a human personality include possessiveness and even suspicion and jealousy, as well as an investigative agenda, with the driving question: why? Scorpio is water that is not moving, like the bottom of a dark lagoon with strange creatures clinging to unseen things like rocks and algae. The fixed quality of Scorpio-ness can be stubborn and brooding, and also, at best, reliable.
In Hellenistic astrology, with its system of “dignities” and “debilities” for when planets are in various signs and houses, the Moon is said to be in its “fall” in Scorpio. It’s just not the easiest sign for the Moon to pass through for a couple of days out of every month. By contrast, the Moon is considered “exalted” in Scorpio’s opposite sign, Taurus, which is compatible with lunar energy as it represents fertility and comfort. Scorpio is more like a mess of rotting leaves, yucky on one level, but pure gold for future growth, and growth is a watchword for the sign that will come next, in late November, Sagittarius.
This New Moon eclipse will fall at 2° of Scorpio, meaning that for many of us late 1950s Baby Boomers, the eclipse will touch on the place in our charts where we have Neptune in early degrees of Scorpio. Neptunian processes range from dreamy and idealistic to potentially delusional. Watch out for those wild imaginations!
At this eclipse, Venus will be almost a degree ahead of the Sun and Moon at 2° 39’ Scorpio. That tells us that whatever excitement this Scorpionic eclipse brings your way, it’s likely to involve Venusian themes of values, finances, what and whom you love and attract.
The other close aspect at the time of this eclipse will be an awkward inconjunct (150-degree aspect) between the Sun and Moon at 2° Scorpio and retrograde Jupiter now at 0° Aries. Jupiter magnifies whatever it touches. The inconjunct is like something as compelling as it is irritating. Scorpio and Aries are both Mars-ruled signs, and that’s all they have in common. The Sun and Moon (and Venus) will be separating from their inconjunct with Jupiter at the time of the eclipse, but the aspect is so close as to add to the potential volatility of the days surrounding October 25.
In some esoteric traditions, the dark New Moon is the time to re-set one’s intentions for spiritual exercises and ethical precepts for the coming month. This is a bit controversial. Some believe it is best to wait a couple of days, to the time when the crescent Moon becomes visible in the sky, and certainly to not try to start anything new close to the time of an eclipse. I plan to just sit in the darkness of the October 25 4 a.m. eclipse, soaking in the watery feeling states of Scorpionic rumination and not-knowing.
And that will be a good prelude for one of the major astrological events of 2022: Mars’ sojourn through the sign of Gemini. The cycle of Mars is such that it usually spends only six to seven weeks in a sign. This time, though, it’s in Gemini from August 2022 to late March of 2023. It will be in one of its biennial retrograde periods starting October 30 and continuing until January 2023. This transit brings with it the potential for both delight and discord, depending on what house in your chart holds Gemini, what aspects Mars in Gemini will make in your chart—and how you and your own free will navigate this tricky time.
On the high road, Mars in Gemini—including all the re-viewing and re-tracing of steps called for by a retrograde period—is ideal for learning new things and sharing them. It’s also the case that Mars is the force of assertion, even aggression, even violence. One of the unskillful manifestations of the Geminian mode of being is to be a big, two-faced liar. So even if you’re on the high road with Mars in Gemini, not everyone else is. There can be verbal spewing and sparring, misunderstandings of basic facts. To boot, during much of Mars’ sojourn through Gemini, Mars will be making a tense square aspect with Neptune, adding to the possibility of communications getting way out of control.
Good advice when retrograde Mars is in Gemini is to check one’s speech and the veracity of data carefully, and also to be ready for some bright new ideas to arise seemingly out of nowhere.
Blessings for the New Moon Eclipse and retrograde Mars in Gemini!