While I was struggling yesterday with issues of Mercury retrograde in the business world, I missed the fact that Jupiter changed direction and is now traveling direct (or forward). Jupiter in transit represents expansion and opportunities, and during this heavy retrograde period (five planets including Chiron are still in retrograde motion) the return of Jupiter will create additional opportunities resulting from the retrograde period.

Remember retrogrades are for re-establishing our goals, re-visiting friends we haven’t seen for a long time, re-novating our lives. When Jupiter is retrograde we often miss the opportunities it brings because we are too busy looking backwards. With Jupiter direct again, it will be easier for us to pay attention and open our eyes to the possibilities that are available to us. All too often when we are in distress we focus so completely on the problem at hand that we fail to notice the doorway to resolution that is presented to us. All it takes is a slight turn of direction on our part, and our life will open up to new possibilities.

Jupiter is exactly square (in conflict with) Chiron right now, opening up (Jupiter) old wounds (Chiron) and forcing (because it’s a square, it doesn’t come easily) us to deepen our understanding and expand our world view. However, with five planets retrograde, our attention on a global scale is still primarily looking backwards. Hence in the news we see announcements from Al Qaeda on the anniversary of the London bombings. Elections in Mexico were evenly split, meaning an endless battle over recounts and preventing that nation from being able to move forward.

In our personal lives, we have the opportunity now with the Jupiter/Chiron dance to allow ourselves to expand and grow into a depth of experience and wisdom. The key with any difficult Chiron cycle is to remain aware during periods of emotional crisis where our tendency is to want to flee. Chiron demands that we reclaim every part of ourselves, including those pieces that we have hidden or separated from, and Jupiter can be stubbornly optimistic and self-righteous in the square where we see its more negative aspects. Jupiter says, “everything is terrific and I am great” and Chiron says “remember this painful event? How can you say that?”

Squares (90 degree angles between two planets) require balance, and let’s not forget Saturn is still involved in this dance as well, although it is moving away which is lessening the pain of its lessons. The key to successfully navigating this challenging cycle is to obey Jupiter’s call to expand your mind and open yourself to new possibilities, while at the same time observing where there are still painful places within us that require healing. On the global level the requirement is the same: until world leaders are able to go to the source of the conflict and reveal the pain that lies beneath (the Chironic process), peace will never come.

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