FULL MOON IN AQUARIUS – It’s time! (August 22, 2021)

by Anne Reith, Ph.D.

Intermediate Astrology CourseIn the Pacific Time Zone, the Moon will be full at 5:01 a.m. on Sunday, August 22.  With this Full Moon, the Sun in Leo will be in opposition (180°) to the Moon in Aquarius.  To further clarify how this Full Moon will impact you on a personal level, locate 29° of Leo and 29° of Aquarius in your birth/natal chart.  The issues associated with those two houses are going to be most impacted by this Full Moon’s presence.

As we discussed in the Moon Update on July 23, this Full Moon is the second of two back-to-back Full Moons in Aquarius.  With the first Full Moon that occurred on July 23, the Sun in Leo and the Moon in Aquarius were located at 2°.  With this one, the Full Moon occurs at 29° of each of these signs.  The last degree of any sign (i.e., 29°) is very important and is referred to as a “critical degree.”

It is believed that the critical degree of any sign represents an important point of culmination.  Also, Full Moons tend to coincide with endings and having the Sun and Moon both located at this critical degree therefore magnifies the “ending effect” of this Full Moon.  It’s like we are getting a double whammy of ending energy.  If we have been avoiding a culmination of some kind, it may feel like we simply can’t avoid it any longer.

Strange though it may seem, even if we’ve struggled to make a decision previously, it may seem very clear and straight forward now.  In fact, once the choice is made, some of us may actually experience a sense of relief.  The proverbial shoe has finally dropped, and we can begin to move forward in a new direction instead of being in a state of limbo.

This is a good time to trust in the Divine Order of all things, because endings are often not easy.  We need to understand that from a spiritual perspective we are starting a new adventure that is leading to our next spiritual lesson.  However, because the Sun is located in Leo at the time of Full Moon, we may be concerned that this decision could impact our reputation in some way, especially within a larger group or organization (Aquarius).  Interestingly, once the decision is announced, we may actually find that people accept our choice and recognize that we did the best we could, especially given the circumstances.

Now that we’ve discussed the overall impact of this important and powerful lunar event, let’s talk specifically about this Full Moon in Aquarius.  Just to review, all Full Moons ask us to determine if we need to find a better balance between the two signs involved.  As explained in the July 23 Full Moon Update:

  • The qualities of Leo include being self-confident, big-hearted, loving, romantic, loyal, and a leader. The lower expression of the sign of the lion includes seeking attention and being overly proud, self-centered, or dramatic.
  • The higher expression of Aquarius includes being independent, inventive, humanistic, tolerant, and intuitive. The lower expression of the sign of the water bearer can include being rebellious, eccentric, stubborn, or feeling responsible for everyone and everything, including the world!

I always believe that one way to balance the needs of Leo and Aquarius is by expressing our unique gifts (a) from a heart-centered place (Leo) and (b) in a way that serves the greater good or humanity (Aquarius).  We were each born at this important time in humanity’s history for a reason(s), and we came to the Earth plane with gifts to share.  Although a few of us chose gifts that are designed to have an impact at a societal or global level, the vast majority of us are here to give our gifts on a much smaller, but equally as powerful scale (e.g., friends, family, co-workers, the clerk at the grocery store).

It may help to remember that the “butterfly effect” tells us that one small act can have far-reaching effects.  This is a time when we shouldn’t underestimate the potential impact of the gifts we have to give.  It’s also important to remember that although many of us see things in different ways, we are all interconnected on a spiritual level.  What is felt by one is felt by all.

At the time of this Aquarius Full Moon, the Moon is conjunct (0°) Jupiter, which means Jupiter is in opposition (180°) to the Sun.  Jupiter is about expansion, wisdom, beliefs, and values.  I always describe Jupiter as “the happy-happy planet.”  We may feel more optimistic and hopeful around the time of the Full Moon.

Full Moons can be emotional times.  However, whenever the Moon in is Aquarius, there is a tendency to be a bit more emotionally detached than usual.  This objectivity may come in handy because the opposition (180°) between the Sun and Jupiter does mean that we may be thinking about taking a risk.  For those going in that direction, support is provided by an exact trine (120°) between Mars and Uranus.  We may be ready to courageously step into (Mars) something new, different, and possibly even a bit rebellious or out of the ordinary for us (Uranus).  We may intuitively receive creative or innovative ideas.  And although most of us will have ample energy, some of us may feel a bit overstimulated and will need to find ways to ground and center ourselves (e.g., meditation, exercise, going out into nature).

Given Leo is about our relationship with authority/leadership, we may need to explore how we view these concepts, both within ourselves and in others.  Additionally, there is a wide but supportive trine (120°) between Mars and Pluto, which will actually be getting stronger over the next few weeks.  Whenever Pluto is involved, we are being asked to explore the difference between power versus force, which is an integral part of being a leader (Leo).  Therefore, the next few weeks will be a good time to explore how we actively use (Mars) our power (Pluto).

As was the case in several previous Updates, Pluto continues to play an important role right now.  Pluto encourages us to let go of what no longer serves us.  This will allow us to heal and transform into something new, like the phoenix rising from the ashes.  Recently, I have been hearing from so many people that my Moon Updates have really been “hitting home.”  For many, the biggest “hit” has been about the clearing out process.  If you are feeling the urge to purge, then go for it!  And given the impact of this supportive trine between Mars and Pluto will be increasing over the next few weeks, this truly is an excellent time to actively and courageously (Mars) finish projects and clear out the clutter in our lives (e.g., possessions, thoughts, beliefs, our bodies, relationships).

Mercury is conjunct (0°) Mars at the time of this Full Moon, and both planets are located in Virgo.  The higher expression of this rendezvous could be communication that is humble and focused on service and healing.  However, we need to be careful because the lower expression of this meeting could include being verbally aggressive, sarcastic, or overly critical.  For some, hypercritical thoughts or words could be directed outward.  For others, they may be directed inward.  We all need to be very conscious of what we say to others, but we also need to monitor our self-talk.  Yes, this would be a good time to courageously use (Mars) our thoughts and words (Mercury) to analyze what needs to be changed or healed (Virgo).  However, we should also remember that the Sun in Leo tells us that this needs to happen in a heart-centered way.

I do want to mention that there is a little “fly in the ointment” regarding our decision-making process.  At the time of the Full Moon, Mercury and Mars will both be in oppositions (180°) to Neptune.  Neptune can cause “the fog to roll in,” which means that things may not be as clear as they seem and we could be seeing a situation through “rose-colored glasses.”  Even if the choice seems clear, it may be best to wait a few days until our words, thoughts, and actions are clear of that fog.  We can spend the few days around the time of Full Moon getting ready to “go public.”

And one final note:  At the time of the Full Moon, Venus is trine (120°) Saturn.  On the one hand, this aspect may help us see our relationships and possibly even our finances more realistically.  However, it is important to take into consideration that Saturn is also in opposition (180°) to Chiron.  If the Saturn-Chiron aspect is used consciously and constructively, it can help us see more clearly when we are being motivated by unhealthy fears and insecurities to take on responsibilities that aren’t ours.  However, if we act out this energy unconsciously, we may take on burdens that weigh us down and keep us from healing our own issues.

Right before the Full Moon (on Thursday, August 19), Uranus began its annual 4-month retrograde phase.  Uranus is still about change; but when moving in retrograde, we may find that the change-process is more manageable, partly because the changes may happen at a somewhat slower pace.  There is also a shift toward processing any changes internally before expressing them externally.

And now that Uranus as joined “the retrograde party,” we have all 5 of the outer planets (i.e., Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, Neptune, Pluto) in retrograde until the early part of October.  As discussed in the last Moon Update, this is an excellent time to do any needed inner work.  Once we reach early October, the energy is going to ramp up substantially through the remainder of 2021 and into the early part of 2022.  We are all encouraged to take advantage of this retrograde “downtime” to focus on “re” words (e.g., reevaluate, restructure, reinvent, reconnect, renew).

On the same day as the Aquarius Full Moon (Sunday, August 22), the Sun begins its annual month-long stay in Virgo.  For many people, this tends to be a very supportive placement for the Sun.  It helps us approach life in a logical way, and we usually are better at handling details.  If we’ve recently made some important decisions, now we can effectively work through any practical issues and finish up any unfinished business.  It’s a great month to get organized and to work hard.  Focusing on improving our physical health is also encouraged.  We just need to be careful not to become hypercritical (see previous discussion about monitoring what we say to others and to ourselves).

On Sunday, August 29, mentally-focused Mercury leaves meticulous Virgo and enters diplomatic Libra.  Normally, Mercury remains in each sign for about 3 weeks, but this will be one of those times when it makes an extended stay due to going retrograde in the sign (beginning on September 27).  Consequently, Mercury will remain in Libra for over 2 month (until November 6).  When Mercury is in Libra, we tend to take a rational approach to our relationships.  We will make every effort to see both sides of a situation, so it is a good time for negotiations.  However, this can be a time when making decisions is challenging.  We may not feel as comfortable asserting ourselves and would prefer to accommodate others, keep the peace, and not “rock the boat.”

Overall, this is a very powerful Aquarius Full Moon.  Whenever we have back-to-back Full Moons in the same sign, they work together as a catalyst for endings of some kind.  If choices need to be made, now is the time.  In fact, for many of us, any decisions will feel like a natural and inevitable conclusion.  (NOTE:  Keep in mind that making any decisions may become more difficult once Mercury moves into Libra on August 29.)  Something needs to be revolutionized in our lives, and whatever choice is made is likely to bring an increased sense of freedom.  So many of us have lost a great deal over the past year or so, but there is great potential for the “next chapter” to be filled with very different energy that enriches our lives in new and exciting ways.


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  • Anne Reith, Ph.D. (AnneReith.com)
  • For information about Dr. Reith’s downloadable eBooks and meditations, feel free to visit her online Store


  • The Mountain Astrologer (magazine)
  • Various online sources (e.g., www.cafeastrology.com)


  • New Moons and Full Moons often influence us for the 3 days before and 3 days after the actual event.


Full Moon at 29° of Aquarius

  • Sunday, August 22, 2021, 5:01 a.m. PDT
  • Sunday, August 22, 2021, 8:01 a.m. EDT
  • Sunday, August 22, 2021, 12:01 p.m. GMT


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By Anne Reith, Ph.D.

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