Elul: ‘Teshuva’ begins at home

Horoscopes for Elul 5780 (August 20 – September 18, 2020)

Zodiac clock  (photo credit: REUTERS/STEFANO RELLANDINI)
Zodiac clock
(photo credit: REUTERS/STEFANO RELLANDINI)
 Elul’s theme is teshuva, turning away from what is neither useful nor profitable, rerouting our path toward the correct direction as we prepare our hearts for the upcoming High Holy Days. Our experience of the Divine during Elul is one of accessibility (“The King is in the Field”) as well as intimacy – Elul’s letters stand for “ani l’dodi v’dodi li” – I am my beloved’s and my beloved is mine. Recognizing the heart’s beloved takes humility and spiritual discernment, both of which are the superpowers of Virgo, Elul’s constellation. 
The Full Pisces Moon and Mercury / Kochav trine Pluto in Capricorn September 1 empowers harmonious reconciliation, deep emotional understanding and powerfully transformative words of healing and hope. Externally there is a lot of conflict: aggressive, war-like Mars / Ma’adim stations retrograde September 9 in his home sign of Aries, forming intense, challenging squares to Jupiter / Tzedek, Saturn / Shabbtai and Pluto in Capricorn between now and November.
Elul’s challenge is to resist internalizing these conflicting energies. Doing the inner work is crucial now, and external conflicts distract from the heart-cleansing Elul comes to facilitate. Use Virgo’s tremendous analytical powers of discernment to examine exactly what’s worth fighting for, and what must be released. 
Another distraction is the temptation to criticize others for not doing as you do, especially powerful during Mercury’s square to Jupiter at the Virgo New Moon September 17. Tribal ruler Gad’s archetype is an armed troop: let those soldiers stand at the gates of your mouth, turning back harsh, judgmental words. Unless you’re setting a public example and modeling how to “do the right thing,” criticizing others comes off as hypocritical. Elul’s focus is on getting your own house in order, not ordering others. Teshuva begins at home, in your own heart, and nowhere else. 
ARIES / TALEH
Planetary ruler Mars / Ma’adim in his home sign of Aries gives you a workout during the rest of 2020, starting with a square to Saturn / Shabbtai August 24, before stationing retrograde September 9. Prepare for a journey backward through November 13, returning to a crucial decision-making point you encountered between July 25-29 of this year. Tribal ruler Judah modeled teshuva at a similar decision-making point. Venus / Noga and Mars square September 4 with Moon in Aries, setting up relationship ultimatums between the desire for stability and the need for action. Avoid impulsive behavior by calculating consequences. 
TAURUS / SHOR
Taurus’s tribal ruler Issachar produced 200 heads of the Sanhedrin, and the rest of the people followed their decisions. Model Issachar’s wise leadership when Venus/Noga in home and family-oriented Cancer opposes Saturn / Shabbtai in work and career-centric Capricorn September 2. This difficult transit triggers feelings of loneliness, insecurity, and fear of deprivation. Don’t demand ultimatums when Venus squares Mars September 4, with Mercury at the last degree of critical, hyper-analytic Virgo, sextiling Venus in emotional Cancer the same day. Beware of wounding words which cannot be unheard or unsaid, especially after Venus enters prideful Leo September 7. 
GEMINI / TE’OMIM
Mercury / Kochav’s trine to Pluto on the Full Pisces Moon September 1 births powerful, transcendent, healing, and utterly transformative magic words: speak to your own heart and free yourself from toxic secrets you’ve kept too long. Creative chaos morphs into fresh structure at Mercury’s trine to Saturn September 3, your inner tiferet of beauty and balance is restored September 5 when Mercury enters Libra. Last Quarter Gemini Moon September 10 completes your current cycle; travel light like Tribal ruler Zebulun and prepare for unexpected changes of directions, both physically and emotionally, as restlessness ratchets up and patience diminishes. 
CANCER / SARTAN
Full Pisces Moon September 1 confirms intuitive wisdom. Your natural empathetic nature connects intimately with those who most need your sympathy and support. Last Quarter Moon in Gemini September 10 reveals hidden motivations behind some of your actions. You may shock yourself with the realization that what drives you hardest is no longer relevant – you’ve grown beyond old paradigms and now must adjust your trajectory to meet new goals. Trust your analytical discernment at the New Virgo Moon September 17; your instincts are usually correct when it comes to evaluating what’s for real, and whether it’s really for you. 
LEO / ARYEH
Tribal leader Simeon put his values on the line when defending the honor of his sister Dinah in the matter of Shechem. If your personal values are not aligned with your material valuables now, deficits of both heart and bank balance are possible. Sun trine Uranus / Oron September 2 empowers major career changes; Sun trine Jupiter / Tzedek September 9 casts favorable light on roles in which you are of practical service. Sun opposite Neptune September 11 shines an accurate spotlight on potential distortions around shared resources; Sun trine Pluto September 14 supercharges your personal power and charisma.
VIRGO / BETULAH
Elul is your annual spiritual recharge. The Full Pisces Moon August 1 with Mercury / Kochav’s trine to Pluto primes powerful words of truth you’ve struggled to articulate to a partner. Though you’re famously analytical, you haven’t yet figured out how to have your cake and eat it too – this is because you fear your truth, if shared with significant other, will be the dealbreaker in a relationship you value. Trust that you’ve built something lasting and speak truth with love when Mercury trines Saturn September 3 and sextiles Venus September 4 before moving into Libra September 5.
LIBRA / MOZNAYIM
Hashem stopped the Sun and Moon for tribal leader Ephraim’s descendant Joshua ben Nun, and you may require a similar cosmic miracle during the sobering Venus-Saturn opposition September 2. Take a significant pause as this transit recalibrates the planet of love, inspiring her to set her house in order, square Mars / Ma’adim September 4 prior to entering fabulous, dramatic Leo September 6. With social activities severely curtailed, you may feel all dressed up and nowhere to go, and frustration tempts you to rebel September 15 at Venus’s square to iconoclastic Uranus. Stick to the plan and resist sidetracking! 
SCORPIO / AKRAV
Mercury / Kochav trine Pluto at the Full Pisces Moon September 5, powerfully initiating deeply transformative and healing communications between you and a beloved. Relationship repairs are empowered during Mars / Ma’adim’s retrograde September 9 – November 13. Sun’s trine to Pluto September 14 empowers radical change; wherever you’ve felt stuck in the past is exactly where you may now blast through the rock with the powerful dynamite of the enlarged consciousness you’ve worked so hard to develop. You’re able to see yourself in the light of your new growth, and to hold space to examine past actions with equanimity. 
SAGITTARIUS / KASHAT
The trine of the Sun to Jupiter / Tzedek September 9 is a spiritual chiropractic, re-aligning your perspective on your career. Repair your ambiguous relationship to work and money. Tribal leader Benjamin’s portion included the Holy of Holies: stop devaluing your most sacred space and realize how protecting your most precious asset – your time and attention – increases your value. Resync with your spiritual ideals; Jupiter’s retrograde, which began mid-May gave you the opportunity to review your deepest soul-beliefs, ends September 12. Mercury / Kochav square Jupiter at the New Virgo Moon September 17; time to negotiate a better deal. 
CAPRICORN / G’DI
Tribal leader Dan’s task guarding the borders was probably a lonely one. Venus / Noga opposite Saturn / Shabbtai September 2 illuminates your own sense of isolation when allowing work to consume your life. Don’t downplay the effect this has on you. Overwork is taxing your emotional health. Take advantage of the Mercury / Kochav trine Saturn September 3; ideas to streamline responsibilities and allow more intimacy pop like light bulbs on an overloaded circuit. Sun’s trine to Saturn September 17 at the Virgo New Moon smooths ruffled feelings, revealing answers. Challenge yourself to accept affection without calculating the price. 
AQUARIUS / D’LI
Tribal leader Asher’s generosity to others is legendary; showing generosity to yourself now is your challenging task. Sun’s trine Uranus / Oron September 2 resurrects moribund ideas, enlivening original insights into almost everything except the deepest secrets of your own heart. Venus / Noga in Leo from September 6 onward wants attention, warmth, laughter, and adoration: what are you doing that’s making you too busy to pay attention to her? Conflicted feelings arise when Venus squares Uranus September 15, weighing the need for closeness and love with the price of relinquishing uniqueness. Allowing intimacy does not invalidate your individuality! 
PISCES / DAGIM
Moshe’s blessing to Naftali included “total satisfaction” with his portion. Your task now is to feel satisfied with yours. The Full Moon in sensitive, psychic Pisces September 1 with a supportive sextile to powerful Pluto and trine to communicative Mercury / Kochav empowers you to speak with the kind of love which enables a great release of toxic emotional baggage now. Sun opposite Neptune / Rahav September 11 sheds practical light on ideals, dreams, and visions; Jupiter / Tzedek’s direct station September 12 empowers manifestation of the most viable and likely to succeed of these in your material world.