The Astrology Blog 6 January 2020
All times in GMT
“To confront change is not by confronting something head on. It’s by telling stories, meeting with people, listening to them and then trying to find a way to reach the heart.”
― Jane Goodall, Sun Mars conjunction Aries, Moon conjunct Ascendant Sagittarius
The above quote is taken from a video of Jane Goodall currently doing the rounds on Facebook. She’s teaching conservation and also says in the same video that she originally entered the jungle as a scientist but left it as an activist. It’s fascinating how individuals always “speak” their horoscopes, in this case Sun in the fire sign of Aries, conjunct Mars, the god of war who rules everything to do with action. Of all the 12 signs this is the best for a Sun – Mars conjunction as Aries is the Sun’s sign of “exaltation” (the best combination of a planet/sign) and Mars is in “dignity” (this planet being the ruler of both Aries and Scorpio).
Mars is the archetype of the warrior, the soldier and anyone who embodies action. Aries is known for being brilliant at causes and will fight tirelessly for the underdog – or in this case a chimpanzee. In a woman’s chart warlike Sun-Mars combinations can show as a very masculine energy, it often reflects a nature of fearlessness and a fighting spirit, but it’s hard to imagine anything more feminine than Jane Goodall in this video, in her floating robes and awesome gentle authority at the age of 85. She reminds me of the Strength card in the Tarot, shown not by a Mr Universe figure flexing his muscles but by a woman taming a lion.
People often ask me why I don’t write my blog in advance. It’s true that I could write up all the astrological features, those are not going to change, but the real point is that I wouldn’t have the context. That is how astrology works, the as above so below principle, events both out in the world and in our personal lives matching the symbolism of the planetary activity.
This week that point has come home to me even more strongly than usual as we face a week of indisputably challenging and unsettling astrology with the Lunar Eclipse, the extremely rare (once every 34 years) but heavy Saturn – Pluto conjunction and some punchy Uranus activity thrown in for good measure.
The assassination of Qasem Soleimani, a top Iranian general killed in a US drone strike, has rocked the world. In Iran his death is martyrdom and he’s mourned for the man he was, but everywhere else the immediate reaction was one of alarm as even the most non political person in the world would know that this is the kind of event that triggers war.
The BBC reported –
It is almost unthinkable that there will not be a robust Iranian response, even if it is not immediate…. Philip Gordon, who was White House co-ordinator for the Middle East and the Persian Gulf in the Obama administration, described the killing as little short of a “declaration of war” by the Americans against Iran.
The astrology supports a picture of total change and, unfortunately, also the risks of destruction. Both Saturn and Pluto rule endings, ultimately death, and both are connected to hierarchy and power. Together they’re the heavy mob, the mafia of the heavens, inevitably raising questions about how we use or abuse power. The point is that comparing Jane Goodall’s approach to activism and how to bring about change could hardly be in stronger contrast to the behavior of the super powers. One is the long, slow, humanist approach, the other is undiluted aggression with apparently little regard for consequences.
From the Political to the Personal
Does everything feel very heavy going at the moment? Hardly surprising. This is a huge week astrologically and for many this is the stuff of transition, a time of endings and beginnings, involving big decisions or serious commitments, either involving us directly or those closest to us. The message about consequences is possibly the most important as this week carries a “no going back” theme, so think carefully about what you want an outcome to be or how you’re going to wrap something up with the best possible damage control.
The Saturn – Pluto conjunction is actually the final feature of the week, and along the way we have the faster moving planets playing into and underlining it, Venus with minor aspects at the beginning of the week and Mercury catching up by conjunction just a few hours before it, the Eclipse in the middle, and here’s the sequence –
Tuesday 7 January
- Venus 22 Aquarius semi-sextile Saturn 22 Capricorn 07.40
- Venus 22 Aquarius semi-sextile Pluto 22 Capricorn 16.52
Friday 10 January
- Sun conjunct Mercury 20 Capricorn 15.21
- Full Moon/Lunar Eclipse 20 Cancer 19.22
Sunday 12 January
- Mercury conjunct Saturn 22 Capricorn 09.52
- Mercury conjunct Pluto 22 Capricorn 10.13
- Saturn conjunct Pluto 22.45 Capricorn 16.24
If you have planets or angles at or close to (within 2 degrees) 20 – 22 Capricorn then this sequence will be reflecting major changes in your own life. This also applies if you have planets or angles at the same degree in the opposite sign of Cancer, and to a lesser extent if you have planets or angles at 20 – 22 degrees of any other sign. Venus is the love and money factor, Mercury is the information or decision factor, so events unfolding at the beginning of the week are likely to connect directly to events at the end of it. Also note that the conjunction with Pluto is Mercury’s last aspect before changing sign next week, and as Pluto himself is about finality this feels like “the last word” and closure.
The symbolism of eclipses lies at the heart of the picture, intensified by the fact that Mercury is exactly conjunct it. So this is a picture of intense conversations or negotiations, deep soul searching or finding ways to take control of your life. Be prepared for crunch points in situations that speak of being overshadowed. How someone else steals our light, how we give away our power and how to take it back again, are all crucial questions in terms of getting our energy back and re-empowering ourselves.
You may also be extra aware of the hand of Fate at work as this kind of astrology nearly always reflects particular happenings that are out of our control, but the point is that we still have a choice about we react. Whatever carries the hallmarks of inevitability are the things to be most aware of, to practice acceptance as much as possible and to adopt a “can do” attitude to meeting the challenges or problems that you really wish you didn’t have to deal with right now! But the positive side to the coin right now is about rebuilding and reorganizing. Even if it’s from ashes or rubble, it can be done. The extreme example of this out in the world right now is the devastating bushfire tragedy in Australia.
At a more general day to day level this week is also about getting back to work and time management. Saturn is Lord of Time, he even rules clocks, and Capricorn is symbolized by the Mountain Goat, hardy and surefooted, eyeing the top of even the steepest precipice and picking out a route to get to the top of it. If you don’t want to spend the next year living life in the way that you lived it last year, if you hate your job or if you’re unhappy in your personal life, then the time is right for tough measures. Being passive and just hoping that things will change is probably not going to get the kind of results that you need, so take charge of the things in your life that ARE within your control rather than letting them take charge of you.
The first half of the week also brings a couple of harmonious contacts to Neptune –
Tuesday 7 January
- Sun 16 Capricorn sextile Neptune 16 Pisces 06.23
Wednesday 8 January
- Mercury 16 Capricorn sextile Neptune 16 Pisces 13.04
In terms of building up physical strength top of the list is sleep. Getting back into routine and getting your body clock (Capricorn) back into the rhythm that works best for you will boost your resilience. In terms of emotional strength top of the list is to distance those who drain you and to engage more with those who know you well and who have your best interests at heart. These aspects are lovely for relaxation, easy company and the kind of conversations that stimulate your imagination or which lead to insights that you probably wouldn’t arrive at by yourself. Sometimes there’s nothing like putting things into words to another person for getting off that awful mental treadmill, when the same subject goes around and around in your head, stuck on repeat, and often full of delusional details!
Uranus turns Direct
Finally, one other factor at work in the change processes going on is Uranus, who has been on a major go slow for weeks in readiness for turning direct, having been retrograde since last August –
Tuesday 7 January
- Mars 2 Sagittarius quinqunx Uranus 2 Taurus 08.14
Saturday 11 January
- Uranus turns direct 2.39 Taurus 01.49
As you can see there’s one minor aspect to Uranus as he makes this turning point, from Mars, by quinqunx, which is that horrible awkward blind spot aspect that happens when planets are exactly five signs apart. The nature of the aspect itself, however, rather fits with the nature of Uranus getting back to business too. Uranus is the rug puller, often bringing that out of the blue factor, the thing you couldn’t possibly have seen coming and which is often in the realms of fateful events. However, Uranus now selecting first gear is also very often a tipping point in any situation that has been under strain for a long time. This is a bit like realizing that you’ve been trying to walk up a going down escalator and possibly for quite a long time. Imagine the relief and the flooding back of energy when you’re able to jump off.
One thing that strikes me again and again, especially when I talk to my clients or to friends in crisis, is how much we as a species love to create comfort zones. That’s fine when these are places of warmth, happiness and security, but more often than not they’re simply places of familiarity, such as a boring or limiting job, or a miserable relationship. We have an extraordinary capacity for placing hope and belief in those who consistently fail to meet our expectations, sometimes for years. Letting go of our illusions is possibly one of the hardest things we can ever do, but in the long run it’s also one of the healthiest, as any psychotherapist will tell you. No matter what may be unfolding in your own life right now I think that this message, in one shape or another, is the one to tune into.
Wishing you a constructive, courageous and life affirming week,
With love from Greece