Astrology Highlights for Oct. 9-15, 2023: Turning Over the Soil

The Reality of Imperfection

We often imagine that in order to be loved, we have to be perfect, and that selecting a mate depends on finding someone else who’s perfect. Venus in Virgo points to this tendency to equate love with perfection.

Of course, all of this assumes that perfection exists, despite only nebulous evidence to that effect. What is very real, though, and easy to see, is imperfection. As Venus in Virgo opposes Saturn in Pisces (Oct. 9, 2023, 11:10 pm PDT), we come face to face with that reality, and with the idea that love may simply be a function of embracing the glorious, imperfect messiness of ourselves and others.


What happened to Christ during the three days He lay in his tomb? It’s a mystery. The Gospel of Mark tells us that after the Sabbath, Mary Magdalene, Mary the mother of James, and Salome went to the tomb to anoint Jesus’ body for burial, and found that the boulder in front of his tomb had been rolled aside and his body was gone.

Pluto’s retrograde period for roughly five months of the year can be thought of as our time in the tomb, engaged in the mysterious process of transformation. And when Pluto turns direct, we’ve risen. After struggling internally and privately for nearly half a year, we emerge as tougher, sleeker, more impervious versions of ourselves.

Pluto stations direct this week (Oct. 10, 2023, 6:09 pm PDT; it turned retrograde on May 1) and for several days either side of a Pluto station, it’s a good idea to avoid “all-or-nothing” decisions. Something important is changing; we’re going into the tomb to transform ourselves, or we’re coming out transformed, and we and the world may need some time to readjust to one another.


Mars can be a tricky sword to wield effectively. When we fail, the self-serving impulses of dominance and brute force overtake us. But for every threatening, scary attribute of Mars, there’s a courageous and valiant one. A wild animal threatening a child is displaying Mars – but so is the courageous mother who places herself between them. An angry, abusive boss is showing us Mars, but so is the brave worker who demands better treatment.

As Mars moves into Scorpio (Oct. 11, 2023, 9:04 pm PDT through Nov. 24), one of its strongest signs, it certainly may embolden the world’s corrupt, violent, and abusive forces. But it also encourages the brave ones, and those with a purity of purpose. This is a time to stand up for what we passionately love, to prevent it being overtaken by equally passionate enemies.

What are you passionate about? Clues lie in the Scorpio house of your birth chart. That’s where you’re ever-watchful against enemies and attacks, and where you are a passionate defender of truth, and of the truly defenseless.

Connections of the Heart

Mars trine Saturn (Oct. 13, 2023, 5:29 am PDT) is one of the very best aspects for getting things done, combining personal will, discipline, and perseverance. When it occurs in earth signs, we measure completion in quarterly revenue goals, building projects, and stacks of folders placed in the “out” basket; in air, by additions to our social network; in fire, by exciting projects implemented.

But water signs measure accomplishment in connections of the heart and intuition. We see this combination in the determined man who succeeds in bringing together warring family members to the matriarch’s sick bed; the musician who composes a song; the private detective who solves the case with both reasoning and intuition; the priestess who summons magic.

At this trine, forget about improving the bottom line, getting more likes on your posts, or putting on a show in the barn; what does your soul want to manifest?

Turning Over the Soil

Eclipses shake things up, and this week’s Solar Eclipse at 21º07’ Libra (Oct. 14, 2023, 10:55 am PDT) is the first eclipse in relationship-oriented Libra since March 2016. The Libra soil in our charts has laid relatively fallow since then; it’s time to turn it over and prepare it for future growth.

Libra symbolizes how we relate to others, and not just by dating or mating, forming a business alliance, or even becoming good friends. It’s also about how we react when a less-talented colleague gets the promotion we wanted for ourselves. Do we dwell on it and fester, or do we shake it off and move forward? It’s about what happens when we realize, finally, that a relationship is over. Do we stick around and try to talk ourselves out of the truth, or do we pack up our car and hit the open highway?

The value of the Libra process is in weighing pros and cons before we act. But this Solar Eclipse in Libra falls near the Moon’s South Node, the point that represents where we’ve overstayed our welcome, and squares Pluto, newly direct and ready for change. In short, we’ve hidden out in relationships, weighing and deliberating long enough. Now, it’s time to act.

This eclipse will bring not just change, but permanent change, through a process that will unfold over the coming three years. Look for turning points in this Lunar Phase Family story near the Libra First Quarter Moon on July 13, 2024, the Full Moon on April 12, 2025, and the Last Quarter on Jan. 10, 2026. And if you remember the Solar Eclipse on Oct. 14, 2004, it may offer valuable insight on this one; it fell on almost precisely the same degree and minute of Libra, and also at the South Node of the Moon. Look back and take stock; what did your relationships look like then, and are there changes you wish you had made then that you possibly could make now?

Writing and images © 2017-23 by April Elliott Kent

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3 comments to " Astrology Highlights for Oct. 9-15, 2023: Turning Over the Soil "

  • Fotena

    Thanks April for the reminder to be brave and pure of purpose! Happy Eclipse season!

  • GabrielleB

    Fabulous as always April, thank you, even your titles are potent. Well here is to the Transformation – post tomb – as Pluto Ups to Rises and goes Direct. . . . phew. We all made it. (again).

    Your writing is pure essential medicine.

  • Appreciate the highlights of the first half of October, especially since I’m really feeling the effects of transiting Neptune opposite natal Neptune, with the eclipse affecting my Mercury in Libra! Plus, you had good news for me, I believe, re possible future transform-ation in an important relationship; and, in general, I found your advice on each of the aspects illuminating. Thank you.

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