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AstroUpdate – August 2015

By Stella Woods, 01-08-2015

Welcome to the Stella Starwoman August AstroUpdate! A big thank you to those of you who have signed up for the August Astrology for Beginners Course or expressed your interest. There’s still time to join us on Wednesday 26 th August, so if you’ve always wanted to discover the secrets of astrology for yourself, you’ll find full details below.

I hope you’ve enjoyed watching the beautiful Venus-Jupiter conjunction in Leo throughout June and July - you should still be able to see these two planets in the first week in August, lying close to the horizon just after sunset. Venus is the brighter of the two planets, both of which are considered to be ‘benefics’ or lucky by ancient astrologers, and she’s recently started her six week retrograde journey – read on to find out what that means for you!

Astrology for Beginners 15-Week Intensive Starts Wednesday 26 th August in Melbourne

If you read AstroUpdate, you probably love astrology – well why not learn more about it? I’m running a fifteen week astrology course starting on 26 th August and my aim is to teach you the basics of birth chart interpretation so you can impress family and friends and of course learn all about your own chart. My courses are a lot of fun – there is some homework, but basically you’ll get out of it what you put into it. I’ll be teaching you all about the elements and qualities; the twelve signs and houses of the zodiac; the sun, moon and planets plus advice on how to put it all together. And you get a 100 page course manual included in the price plus a copy of your own birth chart. No prior experience is required and everyone is welcome. If you’d like to join up or find out more here are all the details. AND…. please don’t leave it until the last minute – a $50 deposit will secure your place – simply transfer the funds to my bank account or you can pay for the course in full online (details below).

Dates: Wed 26 th Aug – Wed 9 th Dec 2015 (7.15 – 9.15 pm) Cost: $750 ($50 deposit will secure your place) Venue: Elwood Learning Centre, 87 Tennyson St, Elwood, Melbourne Bookings: Call Stella on 03 9534 5021 with your CREDIT CARD details or BOOK ONLINE with Paypal/Visa/Mastercard or BANK TRANSFER to Account Name: Stella Starwoman, BSB 063-131 Account Number 1009 0630 Read More about this course including student testimonials HERE

Venus Retrograde – The Dark Feminine

On 26 th July love goddess Venus slowed to a standstill and began her six week retrograde phase. Venus has been visible as the evening star since early to mid-December - you may have noticed a beautiful, bright ‘star’ in the western skies after sunset reaching full brilliance around the middle of July. The Venus retrograde phenomenon occurs every 18-19 months and while Venus’s apparent change in direction is an optical illusion from our earthly viewpoint, its effects can nonetheless be extremely disruptive. As the planet of love and values, Venus retrograde periods are times when we re-assess what and who we value. Venus will travel ‘backwards’ from the 26 th July to the 7 th September, moving from 0º Virgo back to 14º Leo and offering special insight to those born with personal planets in this section of the zodiac, as well as to Leos and Virgos with birthdays between the 8 th and 24 th August.

The Venus retrograde 2015 phase is notable for including two of the three Venus-Jupiter alignments this year creating the anticipation and desire for true love, however, a recurring Saturn influence suggests that the path to true love will not necessarily run smooth!

Handling Venus Retrograde

Symbolically, the Venus retrograde period makes us re-evaluate our deepest values and examine our closest relationships. As Venus moves towards conjunction with the sun (26 th July – 16 th August in this cycle), we are challenged to let go of old ideas of purity and ‘right behaviour’. Seduced by our desires, we often feel ashamed and try to hide our actions and thoughts. Venus retrograde can be extremely challenging, particularly for those in unhappy relationships or who are living a life of duty, rather than pleasure. Imagine a beam of light shining into the deepest recesses of your heart – you can no longer hide your true desires or keep up appearances. However, this very same bright light can bring hidden admirers out of the closet or reveal beautiful dreams and desires. When analysing a Venus retrograde transit, look back eight years to see when Venus was retrograde in the same area of your chart (14° Leo to 0° Virgo). Similar themes are likely to emerge.

Here are some possible manifestations.

-A cold, hard look at relationships of all kinds, often leading to break ups but also to reconciliation and to new, more honest expressions of love -Understanding exactly what is needed to maintain personal integrity -A time of failure, resignation or accident -Awareness of hidden needs or desires can create emotional turmoil -Compulsive attraction to someone or something -Joyful liberation from past restrictions -‘Out of character’ behaviour reveals true motives and intentions -An instinctive understanding of events and interactions -Conscious or unconscious retreat -Lovers from the past coming back into your life -Sudden declarations of love -Forbidden or secret love – breaking social norms and conventions -Guilt and shame over feelings of love or lust -Infidelity and jealousy - the dark side of passionate and romantic love

The best way to prepare for the Venus retrograde cycle is to be honest about any area of life where you are living a lie and not acting with integrity. Take action to sort out the problem rather than waiting for it to surface and take you by surprise. And as Venus rules aesthetics, beauty, fashion and interior design, this six week period (late July to early September) is perfect for a physical makeover, wardrobe cleanout or home decorating spree.

Ritual for Imbolc – Celebration of Spring

In the seasonal calendar, the beginning of August is the time of Imbolc – the Pagan Festival of Lights known to Christians as Candlemas. The older Pagan names were Imbolc and Oimelc, 'Imbolc' meaning 'in the belly' (of Mother Earth) and ‘Oimelc’ meaning ‘milk of ewes’. Although the nights are still long and dark, we sense intuitively that spring with all its delights is just around the corner.

To celebrate the coming of spring, light a blue candle and place it in the main room of your house. Blue represents peace, wisdom, communication, truth, patience, health and calm. Fill a small bowl with water and add a pinch of salt for protection and purification plus a few drops of your favourite essential oil – something calming like lavender or rosemary is a good choice. Tie together small bundles of herbs and starting at the front door of your home, dip the bundle of herbs in the water and gently wipe them over the door frame. Continue to do this to all doorways and windows in the house visualising the protection and peace spreading from the front door to the rest of your home. When you have finished, leave the bowl of water out overnight to anchor the protection and let the bundle of herbs dry before burning it with your blue candle.

The 2015 Venus-Jupiter Conjunction

Venus and Jupiter with its Four Moons

Stella Speaking at Tarot Guild Conference

If you’re into Tarot, you might like to check out the Tarot Guild’s International Conference, taking place from 7 th -9 th August in Melbourne. I’ll be presenting on Sunday 9 th August on Tarot, Magic & the Art of Casting Spells. There’s a flyer below and full details can be found on the Tarot Guild website

Featured Sign-Leo

The Sun travels through fire sign Leo from 23rd July – 23rd August. Leo is the fifth sign of the zodiac with keywords “I express” and “I stand out”. The symbol for Leo is the lion, king of the beasts, but also the beast within who must be subdued and civilised. Lions in art and myth are symbols of strength, supremacy, glory and brilliance. Leos are extremely creative, love to show off their talents and are often attracted to the performing arts or any role where they can shine and lead others. At best they are loving, loyal, affectionate and sincere, displaying willpower, integrity, courage, dignity and leadership and radiating confidence. Negatively, Leos can be arrogant, bossy, vain, childish and over-dramatic. Leo rules the heart, circulatory system and spine, so when Leos are out of balance they can suffer from back pain, nervous palpitations, high blood pressure, fever, stroke and heart disease. The Leo colours are gold and orange. Leo is ruled by the Sun, so those with a prominent Sun in their chart often display Leo qualities. Leo’s greatest lesson is to learn that despite their brilliance and talent, they are not the centre of the universe. The true leader is the servant of all!

August New Moon & Full Moon Open Your Heart & Follow Your Destiny

This month’s new moon falls on the 15th in exuberant fire sign Leo with the Sun and retrograde Venus also in Leo trine Uranus in Aries. The Sabian Symbol for 21-22° Leo shows a carrier pigeon delivering its message representing the constructive use of spiritual energies to bring messages from other realms. This new moon asks us to open our hearts, connect with others and serve mankind. And it’s a great new moon for attracting love and improving current relationships

The August full moon falls on 30th August at 6-7° Pisces. The Sabian Symbol shows a large cross lying on rocks surrounded by sea mist and illuminated by a shaft of light, representing the spiritual blessings which strengthen those who are true to themselves and have the courage to follow their personal destiny. The Sun in Virgo conjuncts magnanimous Jupiter, while the Moon in Pisces travels alongside idealistic Neptune pushing us to speak our truth and live our dreams. Venus is conjunct Mars blending yin and yang energies and communication planet Mercury is conjunct the Nodal Axis helping us honour our intuition.

August Moon Calendar

Launch projects at the New Moon, bring them to completion in the period from just before the Full Moon to the Third Quarter phase and wind them down and reflect on developments in the week before the next New Moon. The period between the New Moon and the Full Moon is the waxing moon (moon getting bigger and fuller). The period between the Full Moon and the New Moon is the waning moon (moon getting smaller and thinner).

You can use this moon table to select the most favourable days to slow or increase hair regrowth. Full instructions can be found in my Lunar Hair Care guidelines at but to get you started I’ve marked the best dates for waxing/shaving to slow regrowth in yellow and the best dates to cut hair for thicker, lusher growth in green. If you’re serious about Lunar Hair Care - order your own Moon Calendar from the Stella Starwoman Store then you’ll know exactly what time of day the moon changes from one zodiac sign to the next meaning you can fine-tune your activities with confidence.

Thanks for being part of AstroUpdate. If there’s something you’d like to see featured, or have something you think would interest others, please contact me at

PS – Don’t forget to check out your August Monthly Stars at to see what’s coming up for you this month.

Happy Stargazing

Stella Woods