A feelgood, pleasure-loving mood is likely to characterise May, thanks to a ton of stellar transits involving the Sun, and benefics Venus and Jupiter, all in earth signs. After all the disruptions and chaos of recent months, it should make for a welcome change when things start to flow smoothly again.
That being said, a certain degree of intensity and an all-or-nothing tone is likely to underlie inter-personal and institutional relations, especially at the beginning of the month, thanks to Pluto, who will be making contact with many of the personal planets such as the Sun and Venus.
Furthermore, we are due for a replay of March’s Jupiter-Saturn square on the 26th which could lead you conflicted about whether to take risks and put your faith in people’s inherent goodness, or instead, to be sensible and cautiously hold back in order to avoid getting your timings wrong or being judged too harshly by those keen to capitalise on your misfortune. This aspect is closely tied up with events that took place around the time of the March lunar eclipse, so you may want to go back and re-visit this period if you find yourself in search of answers. For a recap of my March 2016 Eclipse forecast, visit: http://wp.me/P3G9xG-i0 .
Last month’s Aries New Moon in many ways marked the start of the lunar year. Now, as we commemorate a New Moon in Taurus, it’s time to establish some new routines and develop strategies for providing ourselves with a modicum of emotional stability and security. Financially, this is a good time to consolidate existing funds and make them work harder for you. It is also a good time to look for a new job or source of income.
A SYMBOLICAL BATTLE BETWEEN ‘SWORDS’ THE DISCIPLES OF MIGHT, AND ‘TORCHES’, THE DISCIPLES OF ENLIGHTENMENT
Is might always right? Or can some battle be won by intellectual means? This degree is very much focused on the dichotomy between using force on one hand, and persuasion, on the other, in order to overcome obstacles and win battles. This makes me think of the current struggle between ISIS and the governments of the West. Is this a war that will be won ‘on the ground’ through combat and bloodshed? Or will victory come down to who does best on the propaganda front? These are questions that may before foremost in our minds at the time of the Taurus New Moon as global events unfold.
On a personal level, the next month is likely to be a period in which we find ways to be true to ourselves on an emotional and physical level. There are certain things which we cannot alter, no matter how much we might like to, such as what food we like, or what smells we are drawn to or repelled by. The Moon rules the body, and Taurus rules physicality and the senses, making this New Moon a very earthy affair – one in which it is time to be frank about what your emotional and physical preferences are, and remain true to these, despite fad diets and critiques from others about how you should feel or act.
James Burgess offers some advice on how to express this degree best:
Above all else, we must be true to ourselves. Yet it is far from easy even to know who we are and what we stand for – so how can we even know whether we are being true? What we do is to use the process of idealization. We raise our principles to the level of ideals, so that we may feel them to have a spiritual quality. We need to find and define our unique specialization and allow nothing into the private domain of our personal experience that would compromise our integrity.
The Sun and Moon will be making a conjunction to Mercury, also in Taurus, which adds an intellectual, commercial or educational element to events precipitated by this lunar phase. Discussions or communications may play an important role in resolving or facilitating emotional, domestic or body-related matters at this time, as a result. Transport or travel may also somehow be affected, given that Mercury is retrograde. Nostalgia or relationships, habits or objects from the past may also somehow prove to be significant during May.
Another aspect worth noting is the major grand trine involving the Sun & Moon in Taurus, Pluto in Capricorn and the North Node in Virgo. This suggests that important institutional reforms and paradigm shifts could also be in store over the next four weeks. The nodes are also connected to destiny/fate, so whatever transitions come about now are likely to be ones beyond your control, and to which you must react/respond. Given this month’s many Pluto trines involving the Sun, Mercury and Venus, it also seems likely that relationships will also undergo a metamorphosis of sorts. Staying true to yourself, despite external events or social status changes, may be part of the lessons tied up in this New Moon.
At the Full Moon on 21 May, we may want to take some time out to see the bigger picture when it comes to matters of the heart, hearth or home. Sagittarius is also the sign of sports, and with the 2016 Olympics in Rio just around the corner, it seems likely that fans will start to notice a bit of a buzz developing as we count down towards the Opening Ceremony in August. Celebrations of the ending or culmination point of other important sporting competitions such as the Football Premier League, which ends mid-May, with a possible fairytale ending for Leicester City football club.
On a mundane astrology level, this is a good time to wrap up matters or projects related to higher education (dissertations/theses anyone?) and foreign travel, and let go of out-dated beliefs or cultural traditions that no longer serve you or society (celibate nuns and priests?).
RETIRED ARMY VETERANS GATHER TO REAWAKEN OLD MEMORIES
According to Lynda Hill and James Burgess, this Sabian symbol relates to situations in which the action of ‘going over the memories of “old battles” may bring clues to how you can handle any current ones.’
Given that last year we commemorated the anniversary of World War I, and with a Brexit vote just around the corner, what happened in Europe after both world wars could well offer some wisdom on how the UK should view its relations with Europe. Indeed, according to the European Union website, the whole European project of greater economic integration began with the Schuman plan, which was ‘set up with the aim of ending the frequent and bloody wars between neighbours, which culminated in the Second World War.’[i] Revisiting the period during and just after the war, especially through the eyes and ears of those who lived through that period, could therefore offer important clues as to which direction to take in the present as British citizens head to the polls on June 23 to decide on their future relationship with Continental Europe.
On the other hand, James Burgess suggests that it is not always a good idea to over-idealise the past. He writes:
To optimize our potential, we should not spend too long nostalgically resting on our laurels, telling tales around the campfire with compatriots. Our gifts have to be repeatedly re-grasped, re-energized, and renewed in their application.
In fact, from his perspective:
If reminiscence is to have useful impact, then it must serve to help us appreciate more deeply each significant aspect, and each phase, of our life experiences. What went before can give useful insight into what is to come.[ii]
At the Full Moon, the Moon will be conjunct Mars, which can often lead to heated emotional discussions, vociferous complaining, as well as bodily fevers. However, Mars can also improve vitality and motivation levels, so this could go either way. When in doubt, a good way to manage stress and deal with excess energy that could lead to mischief or conflict is to exercise, dance or get down and dirty! Whatever you, be aware that people will be quite excitable now, so drive carefully and broach contentious subjects like politics with care.
Given that the Sun will be conjunct the Part of Faith, while the Moon will be conjunct the Part of Commerce; and that Jupiter and Saturn will be days away from another square, it is also likely that you may find yourself feeling conflicted about whether to make decisions based on your beliefs and faith in humanity’s better nature, or cold hard cash and facts. A tough call to make, especially you an afflicted Neptune may add to the confusion or add a note of disillusionment to proceedings. However, Sagittarius is ultimately an optimistic sign, and Saturn will be conjunct the Part of Love, so when in doubt, go with the hippies, rather than the yuppies, when it comes to love, family or lifestyle choices.
The Sun will ingress into versatile and inquisitive Gemini at 15h36 BST on the 20th of May, beginning a four week period during which you can make progress in matters concerning travel, communications, self-expression, teaching, learning and media relations.
The Sun is restless and intellectually-oriented in this air sign so don’t be surprised if you feel driven to discover new facts, meet new people or travel to new places. It’s also an excellent time to refine your communications, writing or teaching style, update your image and develop clever strategies for selling yourself or getting some good PR.
That being said, do be aware that Mercury, Geminis ruler, will be retrograde until the 23rd, so bear this in mind when scheduling business trips or presentations if you want to avoid snags or delays.
Below are some key astrological dates to circle in your diary for May 2016. use the cosmic weather symbols to decipher how favourable or challenging each transit promises to be.
 James Burgess, Full Circle, p. 68
 Lynda Hill, 360 Degrees Of Wisdom: The Sabian Oracle, p. 241
 ‘The history of the European Union: 1945 – 1959,’ European Union website, http://europa.eu/about-eu/eu-history/1945-1959/index_en.htm
 James Burgess, Full Circle, p. 290