Astrologer sees 2018 in the stars
Pluto may no longer be considered a planet, but it still can affect your mood, according to Eugene astrologer Johanna Mitchell.
Mitchell gave a talk outlining her astrological predictions for 2018 at Tsunami Books on Sunday. She spoke to the audience from a raised stage in the back corner of the bookstore in south Eugene.
More than 100 people, primarily women, packed the room to hear what 2018 has in store for the 12 astrological signs: Aries, Taurus, Gemini, Cancer, Leo, Virgo, Libra, Scorpio, Sagittarius, Capricorn, Aquarius and Pisces. By the time everyone had settled, only standing room was left.
For two hours, Mitchell kept the audience rapt with her predictions for the year ahead.
“Battles about truth and ‘fake news’ continue” and “with only slight provocation, ideological fervor turns into hostility,” Mitchell said, describing mid-January events.
Mitchell has been studying astrology for 51 years. Western astrology is the practice of divining information about human behavior based on the relative positions of celestial bodies. This information is not science-based and falls into the realm of spirituality.
She has been making annual predictions in Eugene since 1981, when a downturn in the timber industry caused high unemployment, and the Hult Center would not be built for another year.
For the past 14 years, the annual event at Tsunami Books has been a crowd-pleaser.
This year’s predictions benefited the Laurel Hill Center, a Eugene nonprofit group that helps patients with psychiatric disabilities. With a suggested donation of $10 to $15, the event raised $2,023 — a record.
Mitchell handed out charts with 2018’s astrological highlights and key terms for each astrological sign. She talked about the astrological state of the universe and how the positions of the planets will affect love lives, politics and health this year.
For her own health, Mitchell drank tea to soothe a sore throat and used a microphone so that everyone could hear her predictions.
She covered the key astrological events, such as lunar and solar eclipses, over the calendar year, which she broke down into four main quarters.
Mitchell predicted that both the first lunar eclipse on Jan. 31 and the first solar eclipse on Feb. 15 would bring positive changes.
“Take time to have a party,” Mitchell said of Aug. 18, as the movement of Mercury “manifests creative endeavors.”
However, when Mercury turns retrograde on May 22, Mitchell predicts that tensions could arise. She warned against pushing a personal agenda without regard for the consequences.
“You could blame Mercury, but you can’t take Mercury to court,” Mitchell said, prompting laughter from the audience.
Debby Newton has been attending the event for the past 10 years, and she appreciates that Mitchell keeps her talk upbeat. The event at Tsunami Books has become a bit of a tradition for her friend group, Newton said. She also sees Mitchell for one-on-one predictions.
“She gives info, but it always has a positive spin, too,” Newton said. “She gets to the heart of things without getting too dark.”
But there were cautionary predictions as well.
Mitchell warns against watching too much Netflix or television in mid-May; she said the content has become too violent.
“Avoid the seduction of binge-watching people being mean to one another,” Mitchell said.
She gave the example of HBO’s “Game of Thrones” and Netflix’s “Orange Is the New Black.”
Mitchell predicts that Sept. 18 will bring “autocratic temper tantrums,” and that technology, pushed to its limit, will hit a wall.
Mitchell’s predictions have brought mixed results in the past, which she freely admits. For instance, she correctly predicted the election of both former Eugene Mayor Kitty Piercy and the re-election of President Obama in 2012.
However, last year, Mitchell incorrectly predicted that Donald Trump supporters would be disappointed with the result of the election, and that fear-mongering was settling down.
Hafiz Leland, an astrologer for the past 30 years, said he enjoys coming to the event and comparing Mitchell’s predictions to his own.
Leland and his partner, Asha Ulrich, have been coming for three or four years.
“She is enormously entertaining,” Leland said.
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