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The sole purpose of the Ask Astro-Coach column is to demonstrate how an astrological perspective supports better informed decisions by providing deeper understanding of real-life situations. It is not meant to replace your own good judgment, nor the services of licensed professionals, such as psychologists, attorneys, physicians, or financial advisors.






References and Notes


To easily view footnotes while reading the answer, hover your cursor over the footnote number in the text, and a pop-up box will appear.

1. Read more about the mutable dilemma in the late Zip Dobyns' online article, The Astrological Dilemmas.

2. Chart patterns were first identified by Marc Edmund Jones. The classic “bucket pattern” chart is composed of a primary group of nine planets, with a singleton planet opposing the primary group’s center. See Dane Rudhyar, Person Centered Astrology, Aurora Press, 1980, pp. 186–225; and Michael R. Meyer, A Handbook for the Humanistic Astrologer, Universe, 2000, pp.138–150.

3. Transiting Pluto conjoins the natal Moon from January 29, 2001 to November 11, 2003; squares the natal Sun from January 31, 2002 to November 15, 2004; squares the natal Mars from December 27, 2001 to October 6, 2004; and conjoins the natal Ascendant from December 25, 2003 to September 30, 2006. The progressed Sun squares natal Uranus September 20, 2001 to September 22, 2005, exact on September 22, 2003. Transiting Saturn conjoins the natal Descendant from June 23, 2002 to April 11, 2003.

4. The progressed New Moon is the beginning of the significant 30-year Progressed Lunation Cycle. To find out more, read The Lunation Cycle: A Key to Understanding of Personality by Dane Rudhyar, Aurora Press, 1967 and the article, An Overview of Dane Rudhyar's Approach to Cycles (TMA, 2/98), by Nicki Michaels.

Consider how...
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Muddled Guy
From The Mountain Astrologer, April-May 2004 (2)

Q.  I am completely stuck in many aspects of my life: career, marriage, finances. What should I focus on fixing first? I don't know if this is the fault of my Mars retrograde in Pisces, my Sun-Moon-Mars t-square, or something else entirely. Right now, my plan is to focus on my career — I'm thinking that, if I could get my career figured out, then I would know whether or not to invest in the marriage or leave. But perhaps I need to end the marriage; then, figuring out the career would be easier.
Muddled Guy

A.   Feeling a bit like a rat in a maze? You're experiencing the classic mutable dilemma,1 emphasized by your bucket-pattern chart, including your mutable t-square, with retrograde Mars the singleton beneath the horizon.2 However, finding "fault" within your chart will not empower you to shift your outlook and change your life.

Try productively reframing your t-square in a positive light: The 12th-house Sagittarian Moon allows you to see beyond the obvious; the 9th-house Jupiter-Sun conjunction encourages you to let your beliefs define priorities; and the 3rd-house Pisces Mars-Part of Fortune conjunction enables you to put your faith into action to create meaningful change. When operating concordantly, this compelling planetary combination is both dynamic and effective.

Muddled Guy's Birth Chart
Natal Chart - Muddled Guy
Source: Birth Certificate

With transiting Pluto hovering around your Ascendant, from late 2003 through late 2006, it's definitely time for a major shift, especially because this current Pluto transit follows its conjunction to your natal Moon (release of outdated habits and patterns) and a square to your natal Sun-Mars (restructuring goals and life direction). It also coincides with the progressed Sun square natal Uranus (become your true self) and Saturn's transit through your 7th house (get real about your marriage).3  The fact that you've experienced such potent Pluto transits over the past several years without significant changes in your life suggests that the internal pressure you're now experiencing must be close to overwhelming.

As uncomfortable as this must be, it is a good thing — because you are being called upon, in no uncertain terms, to deeply transform and align your outer life with your inner spirit. If nothing in your life is working for you, then reassess it all — marriage, career, the works! But not with logical decisions: the rat-in-the-maze syndrome. Instead, follow your naturally keen intuition and call upon the trine from natal Mercury at the Midheaven to your 12th-house Sagittarian Moon, asking with each step, "Am I being true to myself?"

Next, identify the higher principles that guide your life. Your 9th-house Sun-Jupiter and Mercury reveal an attraction to ideas, philosophies, and belief systems. How do your career, your marriage, and your life align with your philosophical perspective? Are you walking your talk? Where you cannot honestly answer "yes," make choices that will bring you and your beliefs into closer alignment. Be brave and let go of whatever you must leave behind. Make room for the new — much of which will show up after your progressed New Moon in August of 2008.4 Remember: You have a once-in-a-lifetime celestial opportunity for an extreme life makeover, and everything's up for grabs. Be bold and make the most of it.

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