Scorpio Season is always a trip into the Underworld, an opportunity for us to evaluate our inner darkness and communicate with our shadows with clarity and purpose. But this has not been an average year–for many of us, 2020 has been a year-long deep dive into shadow work, staring down fear and guilt, stretching into our depths. How do we handle Scorpio Season when our typical 8th House work has been the larger theme of the year?
Scorpio is one of the few signs of the zodiac with a name directly reminiscent of its symbol–the Scorpion–which is ironic, considering nothing about Scorpio can be seen at the surface. It’s the sign of Fixed Water: if Cancer is the internal wellspring and Pisces is the ever-changing sea, Scorpio is a pool of still water, capable of bending light, creating and destroying illusions, all the while hiding its own depths. But Scorpio has another symbol used to express its highest qualities–the Eagle. And with Scorpio’s associations, this easily undergoes yet another transformation: Scorpio as the Phoenix.
As master of the 8th House, Scorpio allows us to experience sex, death and magic, encounters that touch the depths of our souls and leave us changed. Scorpio reminds us that through destruction comes transformation: through the fires, we emerge reborn. This transformation is inevitable. We cannot hold it back with status, achievement or knowledge. But just like its tarot correspondent, Death is not the end–no matter what the journey brings, the road continues and we will arrive at the next crossroads stronger for the trials we’ve faced.
Just as Scorpio has two symbols, it also has two ruling planets, both of which are at the forefront of the season’s astrological transits: Pluto and Mars. If the Mars of Aries is war and conquest, the Mars of Scorpio is tactic and intrigue. It’s a slow creeping inevitability, a psychological operation in which every possibility, every variable is accounted for. And that impeccable preparation and probing is what gives Scorpio its venom: every gleaned fact, every excavated truth, is a bullet in Scorpio’s chamber. And this year, Scorpio is fully loaded.
A Tabletop Game of War
The Sun’s ingress into Scorpio throws Pluto back into the energetic spotlight. It comes alongside a strong trine to Venus and a lunar conjunction: things are about to come to light. In this aspect, the Moon acts as an indicator of the Collective Subconscious, a vessel for all the secrets and illusions we’ve internalized through systematic denial. With Underworld King Pluto sitting atop the Moon in its sign of exile, Venus (still in her own sign of exile) is cast in a new role–the chessboard Queen, a miniature monarch in a tabletop game of war.
Meticulous Venus in Virgo has a keen eye for detail and will not move without careful assessment. Here, she looks for backup from Mercury, but between its own retrograde and its second opposition to strange and unusual Uranus, there’s not much help to be found. Words have a peculiar weight right now, at once dense and fluid, a funhouse mirror reflection. Take nothing at face value. But this is a reality that Mercury has become quite familiar with, and its time retrograde in Scorpio is exactly what we need to gather intel for the mission ahead. Our moves may be limited, but observation is our greatest strength. Venus and Mercury both arrive in Libra on the 27th and with them, the cool rush of Cardinal Air blows in. This is Venus’ first stop in the sign this year, but for Mercury, it’s a do-over, and the Cosmic Messenger won’t suffer any fools this go-round. Its first trip from Libra into Scorpio was reconnaissance, and its retrograde is a return to set up the sting. But it has a full week before its station and during this time, we’re particularly vulnerable to word games and distractions, especially with the full moon on the horizon.
Full Moon in Taurus
The Full Moon in Taurus comes on Halloween adding a very real potential of tricks to any anticipated treats. Typically, the Taurus Full Moon is an opportunity to evaluate our comfort, to see exactly where our emotions are out of alignment with our reality, and where we can make room for pleasure and growth. But we already know that things aren’t so comfortable right now. It’s important to remember that the Moon also represents people, common populations and communities, and with the Moon directly on top of Uranus, still in retrograde, we’re likely to see some unexpected tensions reach their climax. Mars and Mercury are both creeping in on the Capricorn Cabal, the trio of Authoritarian outer planets pulling strings from the shadows this year. Since the beginning of September Mars has been on its own mission, taking justice (or revenge) into its own hands like a vigilante. We’ve already seen its brute force applied to Saturn, Jupiter, and Pluto several times in August and again just after the Equinox, but with Mercury now crushing in from the other side, the pressure is officially on. When Mercury stations direct on November 3rd, it does so in a square with Saturn, applying similar tension to Pluto and Jupiter: if secrets were the strategy, the tactic is about to change.
We are by no means done with illusion: Mercury moves back into Scorpio on Nov. 10th, keeping truth close to the vest, and with the Sun trine ethereal Neptune in Pisces, distraction and escapism seem the most appealing use of our attention. Venus opposite Mars makes our choices very clear: we can either get mad, flip the board, shout our war cries into the void, or we can play the game. We can remain calm, cool, armed with self-awareness and compassion, confident that our time will come–and soon. We have one final Jupiter-Pluto conjunction to see through, wrapping up a story that began in early April and continued through the summer. Now, both planets are direct, and Jupiter turns its expansive eye onto Pluto’s underworld shades. Hours later, Mars stations direct, content in the knowledge that the trap has been set and we’re quickly moving into place for the check. The opposing strategy will fall apart, a notion confirmed as the Sun beams down on Jupiter, bringing all its underworld dealings to light.
New Moon in Scorpio
When the New Moon in Scorpio arrives on November 15th, the tables have turned: the luminaries shine over at the Capricorn trio, already fleeing their shadowy hideout–in one short month, both Saturn and Jupiter will cross the border into Aquarius, leaving Pluto alone and vulnerable in craggy Capricorn. It’s during this retreat that Venus, the Morning Star, the Chessboard Queen, moves into checkmate squaring Jupiter, Pluto and Saturn in turn, all while trining the karmic light of the North Node: this is the truth we’ve been waiting for, the breath of fresh air after a year of stagnant silence. But the New Moon also comes with a strong aspect to Neptune, reminding us that these roles are temporary. What feels like dire importance in one moment is child’s play the next. The most powerful players may just be pawns when all is said and done. This is part of the cycle: games begin and end, and with one loss or victory comes a new opportunity to grow and stretch, to try new roles and tactics, to swap sides and colours and test new strategies. The board resets and we begin again, like the phoenix from the flames, stronger, more knowledgeable, and ready for what comes next.
About the Author: Fairlie Theta is a Space Witch and Cosmic Divinatrix. Her magical journey began once her grandmother gave her a tarot deck at the age of seven. Since then, she’s mentored under a popular Parisian astrologer, studied countless books on tarot, astrology and magic, and given hundreds of readings to people in need of clarity and hope. Her life is devoted to harnessing tarot and astrology to help others unlock their unique strengths and embolden their ideal selves. In addition to her professional consultation services, Fairlie creates ritual tools and talismans, holds daily readings live on Instagram, creates content on Youtube, and hosts a monthly podcast about magic and spirituality.