September 1, 5:03am EDT, 2:03am PDT, 10:03am GDT, 7:03pm AEST

15.ORCUS.MKHImage: Orcus, illustration from PLANETARY GODS AND GODDESSES COLORING BOOK, by author. Book due out late September. This image shows the “Mouth of Orcus,” a sculpture in the “Park of Monsters” in Bomarzo, Italy. An inscription over the entrance reads “All thoughts fly.” You can go in— if you dare.” The inscription suggests something about this eclipse portal.


“To turn, turn will be our delight,
Till by turning, turning we come ’round right.” —Shaker song

 This month is a page-turner, starting out with an eclipse of the September 1 New Moon. To call these times “interesting” is a euphemism, true as it is, encompassing a wide range of changing dynamics and perspectives. The pace is swift, yet winding. Mercury is retrograde until Fall Equinox on the 22nd, an indication of the archetypal Trickster at work. Things can be better. Take advantage by making improvements where needed. A major planetary sign change of Jupiter on the 9th opens new opportunities for partnerships and improved dialogue, auguring significant legal developments in some cases. A Full Moon eclipse on the 16th continues to tweak our priorities yet again, as the season turns. A second New Moon on the 30th turns the page on the calendar month.

This powerful eclipse will feature a halo of the Sun around the smaller disk of the Moon. It’s not a total eclipse, but a highlighted one, visible in a narrow swath of the Atlantic Ocean, Africa and the Middle East. An eclipse is a powerful portal that shifts the playing field. This one promises to be a doozy of a merry-go-round, with a number of potent planetary dynamics.

Mercury retrograde exactly conjuncts Jupiter, for wisdom teachings of a rare order. Nature has strong medicine. The Virgo advice to “listen to your body” has never been more useful. Mercury extends its stay in its own sign to spiff up our experience to an exquisite sensual awareness of the expanding field of energy coming in to our solar system.

The new field is to some extent focused and defined by new planetoids in our outer solar system. Pluto stands at the front edge of the Kuiper Belt, a vast field of small rocky worlds, more and more of which are popping to our attention. One of them is Orcus, closer to us than Pluto, and therefore named for another underworld god. ORCUS, the chthonic deity of the Etruscans of ancient Italy, is conjunct this New Moon Eclipse. If you google Orcus you will find the demon prince and lord of the undead from Dungeons and Dragons fantasy game.

Orcus is almost a twin to Pluto, orbiting in about the same time frame, but at a diagonal to Pluto. Orcus punishes those who break sacred oaths. You can take that personally if you break a sacred oath that your soul made before coming here to Earth. This eclipse may alert you to such.

Orcus even has a moon, named for Vanth, a winged female with a torch to guide departing souls to the underworld realm. Tolkien named those scary Orcs In Lord of the Rings for this god, a blindly demonic force of greed and destruction. On another spectrum of reference, the name also reminds us of the intelligent orca, largest of the deep-diving dolphins.

The merry-go-round of this eclipse moves in tandem with a particularly close encounter of the ongoing interface of Neptune and Saturn, a reality-shifting, rather crazy-making see-saw of dissolving boundaries and shape-shifting realities. Take it easy with the reality show of the world. There are some things we can’t take seriously and some we can’t take seriously enough. Which are which? If you are awake at night, perhaps you need those quiet hours to listen to subtle wavelengths that whisper peace and love, like soothing angels. The Dreamtime offers creative inspiration if we go there. Don’t move too fast. Keep your feet on the ground. Find your natural rhythm and dance with it, going with the flow.

Remember when Alice went down the rabbit hole and got stuck in that little room? She took the “drink me” and became too small and then ate the “eat me” and got too big. She couldn’t reach the key to the door. Finally the river of her frustrated tears swept her and all the creatures right through the door and onward. I’m not sure what I’m saying here, but that story might relate to this eclipse and our current experience.

As an afterward, this from Astrologer Brad Kochunas as shared by Tony Howard of the Astrology University:

“Astrology is best understood as an imaginal discipline. Interpretations are fictive narratives and this in no way demeans the work of astrologers. Think of all we have learned about our species from the fictions of Shakespeare, Dickens, Updike, Dostoyevsky, Austen, and hundreds of others throughout the history of drama and literature. These descriptions of what it is to be human have nothing to do with the hard headed facts of scientific method but rather with the soft narratives of the heart.”