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Written and Narrated by Pam Younghans.

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Current and previous weeks astrological overviews

Astrological Overview: August 21- 27, 2023

Astrologer Pam Younghans writes this weekly astrological journal based on planetary influences, and offers perspectives and insights to assist you in making the best use of current energies. This column is not intended as prediction. Your own experience will be more specifically defined by transits to your personal chart.

Aspects of Note this Week:

All times listed are Pacific Daylight Time. For Eastern Time, add 3 hours; For Greenwich Mean Time (GMT), add 7 hours.

Monday: Sun quincunx Pluto
Tuesday: Venus square Jupiter, Mars opposite Neptune
Wednesday: Sun enters Virgo, Mercury stations retrograde
Thursday: Mars trine Pluto
Friday: Venus semisquare Mars
Saturday: No major aspects are exact today
Sunday: Sun opposite Saturn, Mars enters Libra 


SUN IN VIRGO: We begin a new astrological month this Wednesday, August 23, when the Sun enters Virgo at 2:01 a.m. PDT. As the transiting Sun moves through the twelve signs of the zodiac, it highlights the qualities of each sign, subtly influencing our human activities.

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Virgo is the sign of the Analyst, the Diagnostician, the Healer, the Perfectionist, the Skilled Worker, the Editor. As an earth sign, it attends to the practical realities of life, enjoys learning new techniques, and focuses on making improvements. It wants to be useful, to be of service, and it appreciates work done well. When the Sun is in Virgo, we tend to have high standards and strong opinions about what is "right" and what is "wrong." 

Each sign also has a shadow side, which becomes apparent when its positive qualities are taken to the extreme. With Virgo, the ability to clearly see flaws can lead to being hypercritical, and the desire for perfection can become impatience with anything less. We can become so focused on what isn't working that we feel pessimistic or cynical. A strong attention to details can interfere with our seeing the bigger picture. And, the desire for efficiency and effectiveness can disintegrate into a need to control and lead ultimately to burnout.

One key when working with strong Virgo energies is to realize that something doesn't have to be perfect to be beautiful. Keeping this in mind helps us see the glass as half full rather than half empty. And it can help to remember that the highest expression of Virgo is actually unconditional love: the ability to hold the energy of love under all conditions. This is not a call to choose self-sacrifice or martyrdom, but rather an approach that helps us appreciate the value of that which the Perfectionist might judge as worthless.

The Sun will be moving through Virgo from August 23 until the equinox on September 22, when it enters Libra. 

MARS AND MERCURY IN VIRGO: The planet Mars is currently moving through Virgo, adding to a sense of urgency about getting tasks done in a timely manner, but also (hopefully) providing the energy needed for doing the work. However, Mars takes us on an "interesting" journey this week, as it first opposes Neptune on Tuesday and then trines Pluto on Thursday. 

If we have a lack of clarity or lower energy levels as the week begins, it may be best to take a break, rather than trying to push through. With Neptune's fogginess clouding our vision, taking action when it doesn't "feel right" can lead to frustrating detours or delays. This may be because one of the higher purposes of a Mars-Neptune opposition is to encourage us to align our personal will with the guidance from our Higher Self or Soul.

Fortunately, some of the ambiguity should be easing by the time of the Mars-Pluto trine on Thursday! The combination of these two determined planets increases a drive to accomplish our goals, and provides plenty of energy to reach the top of the mountain.

Also in Virgo, Mercury stations retrograde this Wednesday. As always, astrological wisdom advises us to review rather than initiate while the Messenger Planet is moving backward. Until Mercury goes direct on September 15, we will want to reassess any current plans or projects, to make sure all the details are handled and also that we are being practical rather than overly idealistic. 

 Here are this week's most important planetary aspects, with my brief interpretations. 
Sun quincunx Pluto: Trust issues may arise, due to an increased awareness of subtle manipulations or a discomfort with feeling controlled. 
Venus square Jupiter: This self-indulgent aspect invites us to play instead of getting work done today.
Mars opposite Neptune: There is a lack of motivation and perhaps disappointment about how a project is unfolding.
Sun enters Virgo: The Sun will be in Virgo until the Libra equinox on September 22.
Mercury stations retrograde: Mercury will be retrograde in Virgo from August 23 to September 15.
Mars trine Pluto: This empowering aspect adds a sense of urgency to our activities. It especially supports efforts to eliminate what is no longer working and to streamline routines.
Venus semisquare Mars: We may feel internal conflict today, uncertain of when to cooperate and when to assert our needs.
No major aspects are exact today.
Sun opposite Saturn: Self-criticism or pessimism could be strong with this aspect, as we can be very judgmental of our efforts and cynical about the possibility of improvement.
Mars enters Libra: Mars will be in Libra from August 27 to October 11. During this time, the desire for equality and justice is strong. We may find it more palatable to partner with others rather than taking independent action. However, the Libra ability to see both sides of every issue can cause indecisiveness, and the need to keep others happy could interfere with taking a strong stance when needed.


IF YOUR BIRTHDAY IS THIS WEEK: There are two very different influences in effect for you this year. On the one hand, you may experience a significant reality check as you come to terms with whether you are feeling personally fulfilled in a certain area of your life. If your birthday is on Monday or Tuesday this week, you may have felt this most strongly in the first three months of 2023; if your birthday is Wednesday through Sunday, you are in the middle of a nine-month process of pruning out what no longer works for you. At the other end of the spectrum, there is a great deal of independent energy being stirred this year, and you may feel inspired to take risks that you might not have considered feasible before. A balance will need to be found between reasonable caution and acting on instinct or impulse. If you are dealing with delays, consider the possibility that the universe is waiting for proper timing. (Solar Return Sun opposite Saturn, trine Eris)


SEPTEMBER WEBINAR: My next webinar, entitled "A Cosmic Initiation," will air live on September 13! Please join us to explore the energies we'll be working with during the last four months of 2023. There are exciting possibilities in store with Jupiter conjunct the Taurus Point of Avatar, two eclipses, and other significant planetary events! To learn more and to register, visit

DAILY INSTAGRAM POSTS: I've recently started posting daily astrological updates on Instagram, talking about the main energies of the day. If interested, please visit and follow! ( )
SOLAR MONTH CLASS: Thanks to everyone who registered for last Thursday's Solar Month class! I sent out links for the audio and video replays later in the day, so please check your spam/junk folder if you don't find my email in your inbox. I hope you enjoy and find benefit! I'll announce the date of the next class (covering the Month of Libra) next week.


 TRANSLATION and AUDIO/VIDEO VERSION: This weekly Journal is now recorded (in English) AND the text is transcribed into 30 languages! You'll see a row of flags under "Available Languages" in the upper right. And, there are options to listen to the audio (in English)  or watch a video directly beneath the photo (see top of page).

The Journal entry is usually updated by Sunday evening, with the recordings appearing late Sunday or by Monday depending on your time zone. Please share this information with those who might benefit.


For previous weeks of the Astrological Journal, click here.


About the Author

Pam Younghans is a professional astrologer, editor, and writer. She lives in a log home northeast of Seattle, Washington with her beloved animal companions. She has been interpreting charts professionally for over 25 years. If you are interested in an astrology reading, e-mail This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., or leave a message at 425.445.3775.

For more information about NorthPoint Astrology offerings, please visit or visit her Facebook page.