Special Days and Aspects
for March 2003
on a date in the calendar to see the current aspects and events for that
A Hindu festival in honor of Lord Shiva, the great god of destruction (who
is also the restorer), and his marriage to Goddess Parvati. Ceremonies involving
prayers and hymns take place mostly at night.
In Bulgaria, Romania, Albania, Greece and Cyprus, people celebrate the arrival
of March by wearing red or giving each other red and white cloths, tassels
or strings, representing health and happiness.
of the Swallow: Another ritual to welcome spring, this one is done by
Greek children who carry a wooden swallow, bedecked with bells, from house
to house, leaving behind ivy leaves for luck and good health.
Davids Day: Feast day of the patron saint of Wales.
The quiet practicality of Venus in Capricorn is exchanged today for the novel
and unconventional way that love is expressed through Venus in Aquarius.
Creatively, expect a time of original ideas and an opportunity to express
them in new and inventive ways.
Sunday: Commemoration of the event in World War II when four Chaplains
of Jewish and Christian traditions (Catholic and Protestant) gave their life
jackets to others as a troop ship sank in the Atlantic Ocean.
New moon in Pisces.
Matsuri: This Japanese Doll Festival has been celebrated since about
1600. Girls display their elaborately dressed dolls on a specially made stage
in their homes, with the figures arranged like a royal court. Families visit
one anothers homes to admire the displays, which usually include heirlooms
from many generations.
Mars at 29
degrees Sagittarius sextile Uranus and Mercury in Aquarius
The restlessness this transit can create is heightened by the fact that Mars
is at the critical 29th degree of Sagittarius, a placement that can bring
about one last crisis to ensure that the lessons of Mars in Sagittarius have
been well learned. Patriotism, without zealousness; religious conviction,
without dogmatic fervor; the enthusiastic expression of physical love, without
indiscriminate lust - all are examples of the best qualities of Mars in
Sagittarius. The sextiles from Mercury and Uranus hint at unexpected surprise,
and add a heightened level of energy and excitement to the day.
29 degrees Aquarius conjunct Uranus in Aquarius
An aspect whose presence in a natal chart often indicates genius is strengthened
today in two ways. As above, the position of both planets at the 29th degree
of Aquarius can precipitate a crises of learning. That is coupled with the
dynamic present in the relationship between Mercury and Uranus, which recognizes
Uranus as a higher octave of Mercury, so the day holds the potential
to offer intense flashes of knowledge with incredible bursts of intuition.
The sometimes overly enthusiastic, occasionally hotheaded, expression of
sexuality and personal ambition of Mars in Sagittarius is tempered and structured
by a turn in Capricorn. Mars is exalted in Capricorn, where the tendency
for Mars to behave rashly or too aggressively is moderated by the discipline
and self-control of the Goat. While essentially a positive placement for
Mars, there can be a propensity towards scheming and calculating behavior
with a great capacity to lust for power and control.
Gras / Shrove Tuesday: Religiously a day to be shriven or
absolved of sin through confession, in preparation for the fasting and sacrifice
of the Christian Lenten season, Fat Tuesday has taken on a
feast-before-the-famine connotation and is a time of great revelry in France,
Brazil and the American city of New Orleans, Louisiana. See the article
March in this issue for more.
The highly mental energy of Mercury in Aquarius is softened and mystified
as the planet of logic and reason is projected though the sign of selfless
love, compassion, creativity and imagination. Mercury in Pisces is actually
in its detriment, because of the ease with which the sharp logic of Mercury
is lost in Pisces murky waters. Mental energy this month leads more
to shapeless ideals than clearly defined projects.
Wednesday: For Western churches, this day marks the beginning of the
season of Lent, which is 40 days, not counting Sundays, leading up to Easter.
The faithful make sacrifices by choosing to give up something, often a particular
food or behavior, during this period of self-examination and spiritual
preparation for Easter. The time period recalls the 40-day fast of Jesus,
and similar fasts of Moses and Elijah. Catholics attend Mass on Ash Wednesday,
where the priest marks each persons forehead with a sign of the cross,
using ashes made from burning palms blessed on Palm Sunday of the previous
Jayanti: Hindu celebration of the birthday of Sri Ramakrishna, a saint
and teacher seen as an incarnation of Lord Krishna.
New Years Day on the Islamic lunar calendar, although some Islamic
countries celebrate the New Year, Naw Ruz, on March 21, the day of the vernal
Hour Day: Western Australia and the State of Tasmania in Australia celebrate
labor unions efforts to improve working conditions, particularly the
achievement of the eight-hour workday.
of Excited Insects: In China and Korea, the day is celebrated as the
arrival of spring and the day when the bugs awaken from hibernation. It is
a day for planting and performing rituals to ensure abundant crops.
Day: The population of Guam celebrates the day in 1521 when the island
in the Pacific was discovered by Portuguese explorer Ferdinand Magellan.
Day: California communities use this day to promote ecological and
environmental causes. It is the birthday of Luther Burbank, a plant breeder
who developed the Shasta Daisy and hundreds of other varieties of plants
while living in Santa Rosa, California. His work helped people farm more
productively and drew attention to naturalist techniques. Burbank lived from
Womens Day: A protest held by garment workers in New York City
in 1857 is commemorated by this holiday, which was adopted by the United
States in 1910 in honor of working women. The holiday has since been adopted
by some other countries. In the United States, the observance has grown into
National Womens History Month, proclaimed by Congress for the month
of March in 1987 and every year since then. The month calls attention to
the National Womens History Project, a group that organizes events
and creates curriculum to teach about historical contributions made by women,
whose achievements have frequently been overlooked in traditional history
Day: The second Sunday in March is a holiday in Great Britain in honor
of the Commonwealth. It is the modern version of a celebration previously
known as Empire Day.
of St. Frances of Rome: St. Frances of Rome, or Francesca Romana, is
patron saint of motorists and widows. Many Italians have their cars blessed
on this day.
9 degrees Aquarius opposite retrograde Jupiter in Leo
Not one of the bad oppositions for sure - the worst thing that
might arise from this transit is a hangover and indigestion. When these two
benefic planets combine, the sense of ease and satisfaction is tangible.
And despite the discomforts of over-indulgence, the plus side is that getting
there is much more than half the fun!
Revolutionary, bohemian, intuitive Uranus begins a new seven-year cycle today
in sensitive, spiritual, sympathetic Pisces. This combination of energy was
last felt roughly 84 years ago, in the 1920s, when it heralded many innovations
in terms of film, fashion and dance. For more on this important cycle, see
March Star Watch in
Sun at 19
degrees Pisces square Pluto in Sagittarius
Powerful forces at work today as the Sun, the tangible symbol of the life
force in our solar system, runs afoul of Pluto, god of the underworld. Look
closely at difficulties that come into your life today, as they will be
representative of deep-seated habits and personality traits desperately in
need of change.
Monday: For Eastern Orthodox churches, this day marks the beginning of
the season of Lent, the time of preparation for Easter.
Martyrs Day: Eastern Orthodox Christians in particular commemorate
the sacrifice of 40 Christians serving in the Roman Army who were martyred
in Armenia in 320 for refusing to make sacrifices to the Roman gods. Special
foods, such as 40-layer cake, are prepared and shared.
First-quarter moon in Gemini.
12 degrees Aquarius conjunct Neptune in Aquarius
An agreeable aspect that propels us towards a greater understanding of the
true nature of love. The attractive, creative and congenial forces of Venus
combine beautifully with the compassionate and selfless power of Neptune.
While not likely to be powerful enough to bring new love into your life,
this transit can help each of us to learn the pleasure of giving selflessly
of ourselves to our loved ones, and perhaps even inspire us to attempt to
give in that same selfless spirit to people we dont identify quite
as well with.
Sun at 22
degrees Pisces square Saturn in Gemini
Reminiscent of some of Februarys more difficult energy, todays
aspect, although relatively short-lived, brings back into focus the waning
effects of the recent Saturn / Pluto opposition, this time by putting the
Sun into a loose T-square with the two planets.
An Islamic day of devotions and atonement including an optional single-day
fast. There are many variations on this holiday in the Muslim world, with
different names and themes, occuring today or tomorrow. For some groups,
it is a celebration of creation and the story of Noah and the flood. For
others, it is a day to mourn the death of the Prophet Mohammeds grandson,
Hussein, with observances including the enactment of a death procession.
The holiday in India that is one of the variations on the Islamic day of
atonement described on yesterdays entry as Ashura. Religious Muslims
carry replicas of coffins in processions and whip themselves in pennance
and to take on the pain of Hussein, the prophets grandson, at his death.
Festival: Anna, whose first name is the female form of the Latin word
for year and whose last name is akin to perennial,
was an ancient Roman goddess who ruled the circle of the year. In mid-March,
Romans rang out the old year with toasts to old lady Anna. The new year began
with the month ruled by young, impetuous Mars. The date roughly coincides
with the vernal equinox and the beginning of the astrological month of Aries,
ruled by Mars.
19 degrees Pisces square Pluto in Sagittarius
Guard against obsessive thinking today! Pluto might just pull an opinion
or thought from the deepest recesses of your psyche, mix it with a shot of
restless, probing Mercurial energy and set up a day where your brain cant
rest, churning over the same detail, the same repetitive, and possibly negative,
thought-form. If you find yourself falling into this trap, write the thought
down, but then save analysis of it until Mercury is in a more favorable position.
22 degrees Pisces square Saturn in Gemini
Similar to yesterdays heavy-thinking vibe, Saturns aspect to
Mercury might lessen the obsessiveness, but it opens the door to depressing
thoughts, loneliness and feelings of being alienated from others. Communicating
with others may be a challenge under this influence, as you may feel very
sensitive to criticism, even when none was intended. Or you may upset others
with a critical and argumentative attitude, which you may not even be aware
you are presenting.
Patricks Day: Tribute to the Bishop Patrick, who brought Christianity
to Ireland in the early days of the faith and ended the slave trade that
had long flourished in that land. Beannacht na feile Phadraig oribh!
May the blessings of St. Patrick be with you! Wear the green of the Emerald
Isle for luck.
Full moon in Virgo.
This Hindu festival, timed to the full moon in March, is part religious
observance and part high-spirited celebration of the imminent spring equinox.
Known as the Festival of Colour, Holi is celebrated in India with parades,
folk songs, dances and a general sense of abandon. The wild fun includes
chasing each other around, throwing brightly colored powder and water over
one another. The festivities begin the night before with bonfires commemorating
an enthusiastic and faithful devotee of Lord Vishnu who was brought, unscathed,
through a raging fire and other attempts by his demon-father to destroy him.
Huge piles of wood are gathered and lit. Offerings of coconut and other foods
are made to the fire and later distributed amongst everyone.
Day: On the day after St. Patricks Day, some of the Irish drown
the shamrock worn the day before in a glass of whiskey, as a toast
to Sheelah. Although her identity has been lost in time, Sheelah is said
to have been a relative of St. Patrick.
19 degrees Aquarius sextile retrograde Pluto in Sagittarius
A day of powerful, deep and intense emotions, especially where love and personal
relationships are concerned. If this aspect touches your natal chart in a
significant way, you may find an important new person entering your life
today. Contacts made under this influence can be soul stirring and magical
with a profound sense of déjà vu, and the capacity to heal
old wounds in both parties.
Enthusiastic revelry and charity for the poor go hand-in-hand during this
Jewish celebration of the deliverance of the Jewish minority from genocide
in Persia in the days of Queen Esther. See the article
March in this issue for more.
Equinox in the Americas: The 2003 vernal equinox occurs at 8 p.m. EST
March 20, when spring begins in the Northern Hemisphere. By Universal Time,
though, the equinox occurs early March 21, and most of the holidays connected
with the equinox fall on the 21st.
Equinox, 1 a.m. Universal Time -- A jumbo day, brimming with astrological
aspects and holiday observances!
Today the Sun begins a new circuit of the heavens as it enters Aries, the
symbolic newborn of the zodiac. In this action-filled time of new beginnings,
spring breathes new life into the frozen north and people increase their
activity levels with the lengthening days. The fiery, enthusiastic, seemingly
tireless energy of the Ram propels us forward on a new cycle of adventure
Mercury, channeling the impetuous and vigorous energy of Aries, expresses
itself much more clearly and directly than it was able to do in Pisces, so
thought and communication lighten up now after the heavy-thinking effects
of Mercury in Pisces earlier in the month. Today heralds the beginning of
a much more active phase of communication, marked by quick decisions and
competitive energy. Remember that healthy competition grants learning and
expansion opportunities to both parties. Dont let it degenerate into
a win-at-all-costs mentality, which would be Aries energy expressed at its
22 degrees Aquarius trine Saturn in Gemini
Although the natures of Saturn and Venus are often inimical to each other,
this aspect has the potential to bring about the deepest possible connection
between the two planets. Occasionally frivolous and flighty, here Venus is
able to willingly submit to Saturns more stern approach to love and
relationships. Love under this influence is devoted, enduring and deeply
Day of Spring: The 2003 vernal equinox occurs at 1 a.m. Universal Time
on March 21, and spring officially begins in the Northern Hemisphere.
Nature religions welcome spring and the Goddess as a young maiden.
New Day is the Zoroastrian, Bahai and Iranian New Year,
which occurs on the date of the vernal equinox. Since ancient times it has
been the great national holiday of Iran, the only holiday there that is
celebrated by more than one religious group.
A week of Japanese Buddhist services, centered on the day of the equinox,
honoring the spirits who have crossed from the world of suffering to the
world of enlightenment. Higan is repeated at the autumnal
Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination: The United Nations
General Assembly first proclaimed this annual observance in 1966. The assembly
asked all countries to remember the victims of racial prejudice worldwide
and work to eliminate bias wherever it was found. The day is the anniversary
of a 1960 massacre in Sharpeville, South Africa, where 69 black people involved
in a nonviolent protest against the countrys racial apartheid policies
were killed by police gunfire.
Republic Day: A national holiday commemorating the 1956 establishment
of Pakistan as an Islamic republic within the British Commonwealth.
8 degrees Aries trine retrograde Jupiter in Leo
Opportunities in business and finance open up today, as Mercury comes into
aspect with bountiful Jupiter. Writers and public speakers take note - your
words today will carry extra charisma and influence, as Jupiter gives a boost
to all types of communication.
Last-quarter moon in Capricorn.
of the Annunciation of the Blessed Virgin Mary: Christian celebration
of the angel Gabriel announcing to the Virgin Mary the upcoming birth of
Independence Day: After 400 years of Turkish occupation, Greece declared
its independence on this day in 1821, sparking a war that lasted until 1829,
when the Turkish sultan recognized Greek freedom. The country celebrates
with church services and parades.
Independence Day: The country declared independence from Pakistan on
this day in 1971 and won the war by the end of the year with the help of
12 degrees Aries sextile Neptune in Aquarius
Stimulating the imagination, encouraging long flights of fancy, and creating
day dreams with the potential to make their way into the physical realm,
this aspect opens up a conduit to your inner world and fantasy life. Today,
follow your heart, not your head.
Today sees Venus entering Pisces, the sign of her exaltation. In Pisces,
the appreciation of beauty, the creativity, and the personal attraction of
Venus are combined with a mysterious Piscean sense of spirituality, deep
wells of compassion, and sensitivity to people from all walks of life. Creative
and artistic expression are heightened and refined during this time - people
with Venus in Pisces are gifted with incredible talent, especially in painting,
sculpture, film and photography.
0 degrees Pisces conjunct Uranus in Pisces
Capping off a week of inspired and creative transits, Uranus conjunct Venus
in Pisces offers an unparalleled opportunity to combine the inventive originality
of Uranus with Venus refined aesthetic sensibilities, and both are
blessed by the mystic power of Pisces. Artists working during this period
may feel something akin to divine inspiration.
Sal: The Parsis of India, descended from Persian Zoroastrians, celebrate
the 628 B.C. birth of the Prophet Zarathustra, founder of the Zoroastrian
faith, on this day.
15 degrees Aries square Mars in Capricorn
The ethereal spell cast by the aspects of the previous few days comes back
down to Earth with this very action-oriented transit. While a possible outcome
of this day may be arguments and ego-centered clashes of opinion, a better
use of this energy would be to take all the deep thoughts channeled through
the recent Pisces aspect, and use Mercurys energy and the strength
of Mars in Capricorn to create something of lasting value.
Sun at 8
degrees Aries trine retrograde Jupiter in Leo
Buoyant, exuberant, fiery, passionate and fiercely optimistic are the keywords
for today. Combined with Mercurys square to Mars, todays strong
energy offers the perfect mood for work that requires energy and vigor. The
only caveat is that Jupiter may make you feel so good today that you wont
want to roll your sleeves up and get to work. Use the Arian Sun to initiate
action - youll be surprised how much you can actually accomplish today!
Days: According to Scottish legend and an old poem, March borrowed its
last three days from April, filling the first of those borrowed days with
wind and rain, the second with snow and sleet, and the third with a hard
freeze. The days are observed as a last hurrah for wintry weather, in hopes
of a fair April.
Days: The borrowed days continue, from March 29-31. According to legend,
today should be filled with snow and sleet.
19 degrees Aries trine retrograde Pluto in Sagittarius
A month that has been marked by very mental energy finishes on that same
note. Mercury trine Pluto brings out the detective within and offers an excellent
day for research and uncovering the facts. You will not be easily fooled
today, nor will you be put off by dead ends or obstacles.
Days: This is the last of the borrowed days, which began March 29. According
to Scottish legend, there should be a hard freeze today.
by Terri Smallwood; holidays compiled by Maria Barron