Alexandra Blair is an astrologer, artist, and dark moon sorceress living in the American south. Astrologically, she blends traditional Hellenistic methods with contemporary interpretive techniques. She is a lifelong student with special interests in art, esoterica, and ruthless self-development.
October 2022: Tension & Turbulence
September and October both feature an interesting dance of squares and oppositions between Neptune and Jupiter aspected unfavorably against the Sun and Moon and, at times, others, too. Neptune, in retrograde in Pisces, and Jupiter, also in retrograde in Aries, are forming lots of tough aspects that will feel openly turbulent and possibly even chaotic throughout this month. Prepare for rapid shifts in thought, mood, circumstance, and demeanor. You may receive new information–or just a new outlook–that throws your perceived reality into stark relief. Try to treat yourself and others with grace, even as you may feel compelled to get judgmental and nitpicky. This rough patch through September and October will particularly impact those with strong Pisces, Virgo, Aries, and Libra placements along with Sagittarius risings.
Look at this graphic highlighting the drama of the current shadow period we’re in. All planets are currently retrograde except for Mars and Venus. Mercury, Saturn, and Pluto will station direct throughout this month, however, which will alleviate a lot of the tension and existential dread we’ve been feeling as many of us have been getting buffeted about by the winds of realization and change. Expect to feel an end to the reality checks around the Full Moon in Aries on 9 October. By then, Pluto and Mercury will both have gone direct and our ability to take some action will be refreshed. We will be feeling more able to communicate and act in service of bringing balance into our lives. Particularly as Mercury enters Libra on 10 October, look for support from your friends and network.
Mars will station retrograde in Gemini at the end of October, bringing the turbulence and chaotic activity that’s characterized much of 2022 down to a slower pace fitting for intellectual and spiritual activity (moreso than any real action).
25-26 September: New Moon Reality Check
From 25-26 September, the Moon, Sun, and Venus in Libra will be opposing Jupiter in Aries. Meanwhile, Venus and Mercury in Virgo will be opposing Neptune in Pisces. This tension will underscore the entire month, but will particularly color the New Moon in Libra on 25 September 2022 at 16:54 (chart). This lunation will be a direct callback to actions and decisions made earlier this year and will come to a head for Sagittarius, Pisces, Aries, and Virgo risings when the Sun opposes Jupiter directly on 26 September 2022 at 14:32 (chart).
Think about what you were dealing with in March, April, and May of 2022. Those months were a flurry of dreamy, big-picture thinking and wild, entropic action in the pieces of our lives (and natal charts) governed by Pisces and Aries. Now, as most planets are retrograde, we’re revisiting what we learned then and trying our hardest to square those goals and actions with the current reality of our situation. This is the most straightforward reality check moon I’ve seen in recent times. If considered and leveraged, this could be a powerful new beginning through a more balanced way of thinking. It could involve leveraging social ties in service of bringing equilibrium into ones’ life.
Look to where Libra, Virgo, Pisces, and Aries fall in your chart for some clues as to where your rapid change is now struggling against reality. All four of the above rising signs, for example, will be rethinking and recontextualizing their romantic endeavors. Where Leo risings may be experiencing a financial reality check.
In general, New Moons are times of new beginnings and this one would be served by taking an honest accounting of your life–particularly the zones that are governed by Aries, Pisces, Virgo, and Libra. Look for the specific tensions between Libra <-> Aries and Virgo <-> Pisces. Spent the days leading up to this lunation doing some shadow work journaling, scrying (particularly in a black mirror), pulling cards, and in-general setting aside time to honestly audit the current state of your affairs in these realms of your life. Then, use this New Moon to chart, commit to, and embark upon a new, more honest beginning in this realm.
Venus in Libra
Venus will enter Libra on 29 September 2022 at 2:49 (chart) and will bring with it a gust of fresh delight to be optimistic about. While Venus in its domicile of Virgo inspires us to be obsessive, nitpicky, organized, and realistic, this benefic transforms into a romantic social butterfly in the sign it rules. When in Libra, Venus typically brightens up our lives and brings a gust of sociable loveliness into things, but the tough aspects in the sky will prevail for at least another few weeks. So, here, Venus will simply be lessening the intensity we’re feeling throughout the month.
1-2 October: Oh. That’s what this Mercury Retrograde was all about
On 1 October, 2022 at 13:11, Venus will Oppose Jupiter & nearly all major planets will align to form an aspect pattern called a Grand Cross
While this transit may appear small on its own, the Mutable Grand Cross makes it more significant and the difficult oppositions and squares of this cross will persist until the New Moon in Scorpio on 25 October. Grand Crosses are a series of square aspects that map onto one modality (Mutable, in this case) and contain oppositions that form a large “X” through the square box.
A Grand Cross is an aspect pattern of great psychological and interior complexity that serves as a crucible or pressure cooker. These aspects often reveal a sense of mounting pressure and urgency–in this case about changes we must make in our lives, our daily habits, and our communication at large. There can be a sense of grit or perseverance implied, however, especially with a Mutable modality (meaning all four corners of the cross are planets in Mutable signs). Mutable signs are all about adaptability and shifting their shape to handle what needs to be done.
While a Fixed or Cardinal Grand Cross can be outright negative, Mutable ones are typically less severe and reveal a moment of major change or realization. Most likely, considering the difficult aspects between the Sun, Moon, Saturn, Uranus, Mercury, and Venus on top of the Grand Cross… this is going to be a moment in which we are forced to quickly and confidently adapt to a major hardship. This might look like a sudden realization of things as they are or slow, creeping restrictions that have suddenly crossed into “unbearable” territory. This will likely tie into the next days’ Mercury transit, as well.
In fact, those with prominent Virgo and Gemini placements will be thanking the gods as Mercury stations direct at 4:07 on 2 October 2022 (chart) and this transit ties right in to what the Mutable Grand Cross will demand of us.
For many, this two day period at the top of the month will feel like a major change that, if made with confidence and vitality, will ease a whole lot of tension.
8-10 October: A Powerful Moment of Rebirth (not without its tension)
The planet of death, rebirth, and transformation goes retrograde for approximately five months of every year and many of us are, therefore, used to its effects by the end of that swath of time. But when Pluto stations direct at 16:55 on 8 October 2022 (chart), many of us will be feeling a serious transformation. This retrograde period in Capricorn had many of us questioning power dynamics and control, with Cardinal signs (prominent Aries, Libra, Cancer, and Capricorn placements) embarking on a major, long-term arc of transformation that began on 29 April 2022 and will culminate with the Full Moon in Aries on 9 October 2022 at 15:54 (chart). Cardinal placement natives have likely spent the past several months examining the emotional baggage preventing them from moving forward in their interpersonal relationships and, when Mercury enters Libra on 10 October 202 at 18:51 (chart), they will finally be ready to proceed with a new paradigm.
In general, Full Moons are times for letting go and for charging our workings with a fully realized lunar power. This lunation will support workings and spellcraft in service of transformation, balance, and the greater good. Though this Full Moon will still carry some of the difficult aspects that underscore the month of October, it will be a triumphant expression of metamorphosis for Cardinal signs (particularly Aries risings!) and that energy can be leveraged by us all.
Ritual workings in service of shedding ones’ old skins, purging that which no longer serves us with fire, and any spellcraft with intention to flood oneself with determination and power will be well favored by this lunation. Strong elemental associations with both Fire and Air make this a great time for smoke cleansing, too.
22-23 October: A Light at the End of the Tunnel (but let’s not forget what we’ve been through)
Though the last harsh aspects that have peppered this month won’t disperse until the 25 October New Moon in Scorpio, the 22-23 of October will be an enormous weight lifted off our chests. Like waking from a chaotic nightmare or emerging from a period of stress at work, this period will remind us that there is a light at the end of the tunnel and an end in sight to the struggles we’ve been enduring in September and much of October.
The relief will begin with a Venus Cazimi in Libra on 22 October, 2022 at 16:17 (chart). A Cazimi (an Arabic term meaning a planet is “in the heart of the Sun”) is a transit that occurs when a planet is directly conjunct with the Sun. Cazimis are auspicious transits of luck, enchantment, fortune, and great opportunity. This is a particularly fortunate transit as Venus is in its domicile of Libra. This transit will bring a fortunate opportunity in whatever house is governed by Libra in your natal chart. Venus is a benefic planet that will bring romance and optimism–supercharged by the Sun’s rays!–into that realm. Aries risings, in particular, (and possibly Aquarius rising natives, too) will have an opportunity relating to literal romance–well deserved, considering the year they’ve had thus far.
Later, at 23:07 on 22 October, 2022 Saturn will station direct (chart) bringing a major sense of freedom and levity back to us. Aquarius and Capricorn risings in particular (and, to a lesser extent, all prominent Aquarius and Capricorn Sun and Moon placements) will be taking their first full breath since early June. Saturn is malefic planet of restriction and its retrograde manifests in an Odinic way–stern, aloof, and skeptical of how frivolity serves morality and values. Saturn retrogrades are associated with restriction, obstruction, debts, misery, and an overwhelming sense of dread and hopelessness about the weight of all of the above. So, this transit should feel like a literal party. When the Sun enters Scorpio on 23 October, 2022 (chart) the immediate relief will calcify into an impassioned–if stoic–sort of determination. It might feel a little like this. We won’t forget what we’ve been through, but now we’ve got the wiggle room to proceed with intention and flair. Scorpio is a fixed, water sign typically associated with transformation, intensity, and deep thinking and feeling. Scorpio typically presents itself in an alluring and mysterious manner that beckons those who brave enough to venture into the realm of shadow and darkness.
However, when Venus enters Scorpio at 2:52 on 23 October, 2022 (chart), this light at the end of the tunnel feeling may give way to full blown retributive action and bitterness. Venus is in its detriment in Scorpio, and this transit can easily have us overtaken by our own pride and grudge-holding. Like letting a beautiful bouquet of flowers sit on the counter until it is lost past wilted and rotting, Venus in Scorpio can easily veer into something quite dark and sickly.
A New Moon in Scorpio on 25 October (chart) will have most of the major tensions of the month dissipating and will leave us with a fierce new sense of faith in ourselves (rooted in endurance and grit) along with a dark determination to succeed. Plus: Jupiter returns to Pisces, Mercury in Scorpio has us keeping secrets, and Mars finally join the retrograde party. Yeah, really.
Notes on process:
All referenced times are CST (but will be relevant within an hour or two for anyone in North America); Find exact times for your location by using a Transit calendar like this.
See which areas of your life these transits will illuminate and activate by calculating your own natal chart. Astrologer Chani Nicholas has a fantastic and equitably made tool to generate your whole sign house (different than some other apps) natal chart with Whole Sign/Fixed houses that is free to use here.
For more information about astrology, witchcraft, and other pagan paths, visit the Pathways of the Pagan discord channel here.