All five naked-eye planets visible: This week on the Storyteller's Night Sky

Jul 9, 2018

After New Moon Thursday, follow our lunar companion through the following nights as it sweeps up the sky past Mercury, Venus, Jupiter, Saturn and Mars.

There’s so much happening in the sky this week, starting with the planet Jupiter, which changes direction after nearly four months of retrograde motion; there’s a New Moon that will cause a partial solar eclipse in other parts of the world; and after Friday the 13th, it will be possible to view all five naked-eye planets and the Moon in one night! 



An astrologer friend once told me that when Jupiter is in its retrograde motion, as it has been since mid-March of this year, then it’s like removing the mask and it’s a time for deconstructing our illusions. If this holds true, then the last four months have been about this unmasking, and on Tuesday this week, the process ceases when Jupiter turns direct, and we start building toward the future again, hopefully more aware.


Then there’s the partial solar eclipse on Thursday. It won’t be visible to us in the United States, but it’s worth noting that former cultures believed that a solar eclipse was like a safety valve on a steam engine that regularly opens to release built-up pressure ~ so that’s a good thing, and that happens Thursday.


This is followed by the 13th day of July, which falls on a Friday this year. The traditions of bad luck associated with this coincidence are so prevalent that there’s even a name for people who exhibit an extreme fear of Friday the 13th ~ it’s called Triskaidekaphobia. 


But these things are just trifles if we take to heart the words of William Shakespeare, that all the world’s a stage, and all we men and women are merely players. If the world is the stage, then this implies that the audience is the celestial world, and they’re all lined up this week to witness our unmasking, our fears and our follies. Start looking for Moon, Mercury, Venus, Jupiter, Saturn and Mars after Saturday ~ and start counting your lucky stars!