We start 2016 with lot’s of hope and anticipation for the good times ahead and even though it may take some months before we feel that this really is a trend in the right direction. By years end we might find ourselves living in a different reality to the one we’ve just left behind. 2016 is a year when the recent challenging cycles of the last ten years show us how they have prepared the way for our next phase of development. This year is likely to be a “game changer” and now each one of us has to choose how we are going to play it. Read the Full 2016 Forecast
As we move into 2015 many people will gladly put 2014 behind them! On a personal level there are likely many high points to look back on with a sense of lasting achievement gained from undergoing the Herculean challenges it presented as the months unfolded. Having been required to, sometimes literally, weather the storms, it probably feels like we’ve just come out of one of the toughest years yet.
Whilst 2015 doesn’t bring the end of all tribulation – we still have some of the same astrological dynamics to work with – it does promise to be considerably less like an endurance test.
The major theme as we look ahead is one of new beginnings. We know that there is no going back, we’ve seen too much of the truth and it’s not pretty. But having turned our back on the last few years we are still not quite sure what we want for our collective future. So, much of this year is about making a start with tidying up the mess whilst we debate and consider the most desirable way forward. How we react and respond to events and situations as they arise will have a profound affect on our future experiences. There are some key astrological events that have extra significance during the coming year and they act as “doorways” or “cross roads” as we pass through these times.
We are currently in the midst of two important planetary configurations. The Pluto Uranus square which has been with us since 2012 is the epitome of revolution and it has almost finished it’s work. Breaking down the establishment with it’s entrenched corruption is the job of Pluto in Capricorn whilst Uranus in Aries is the rebel fighting for the right of expression and freedom from tyranny. Protests and demonstrations. Collective unrest has been the theme. Chaos, disruption and shocking events have left few untouched. Even those who saw no reason or had no intention to shake up their world haven’t been allowed to maintain a comfortable status quo. This extreme and unsettling phase has nearly reached it’s conclusion. From late November 2014 through to early April these two planets stay within range, with the final exact square on 17th March. We can expect many of the issues and tensions that have built up during the last months of 2014 to begin to ease from then onwards. The next few years are a time of renewal and regeneration involving the collapse of the old order of things and the construction of the new.
The second ongoing dynamic which has been with us since late September is the supportive and positive trine aspect of Jupiter in Leo to Uranus in Aries. It started around the potent Libra New Moon and will continue on through to late June. This influence gives a forward thinking, inspirational drive. The focus is on mind-expanding activities connected with consciousness growth. There will be plenty of exciting possibilities and great inventiveness during this period as hope and optimism for a brighter future inspires creative solutions along with the will to try a new path.
To add to this year’s theme of endings and beginnings we have the great teacher planet, Saturn changing signs when we say farewell to the old year around the winter solstice. This sombre planet takes about 2.5 years in each sign. On a mundane level it represents the social order, authoritarian influences and trends in law, social contracts and civic cohesion. It shows how the regulation of society influences or limits the choices of an individual. Whilst moving through the intense, fixed sign Scorpio we saw many examples where power had corrupted those entrusted with it and how lawful order was disregarded by those in authority. Saturn now moves into Sagittarius which is a fast paced, future orientated sign that has high ideals, seeks a greater truth and loves freedom to roam and explore new horizons.
Saturn went through this sign during 1926-29, 1956-58 and 1985-88. These were periods of increased international exchange with an emphasis on expansion of ideas and delimitation. Commitments, contracts and agreements to long term plans will need to be revised or renegotiated to fit with the more idealistic version of society that we want to create. Beliefs will be challenged and so called “truths” questioned during this phase. There may be a broadening of geographical boundaries but also new limits imposed or restriction of movement across existing borders.
As further confirmation that we really are heading into a new phase this year there’s a once in a lifetime event at the Spring equinox in March. Astrologers generally acknowledge the first degree of cardinal sign Aries to be the most potent in the Zodiac. As the Sun passes this point it is essentially the beginning of a new yearly cycle and also represents another turn on the evolutionary spiral of our unfolding consciousness. So this year on 20th March, to mark the occasion, there is a New Moon, Super Moon, total Solar eclipse – which occurs in the last degree of Pisces. This really is underlining the theme of endings and beginnings! The last time a Perigee moon (Super moon) occurred in the very last degree of the Zodiac was in 1901, the end of the Victorian era, which then brought an immense change in the social and political trends for a vast portion of the globe.
This coming solar eclipse will be visible throughout Europe, N.W. Africa and the middle East and the totality can be seen in the very North of Europe. The next visible eclipse in this area will not be until 2026. This event suggests that huge changes in the social and political structure of the entire European region will follow during the next months.
Other significant events later in the year include Jupiter moving into Virgo, which it does about every 12 years. The big planet Jupiter shows us how and where we become something more than we have been. Expansion, growth, nurturing of ideas or beliefs along with understanding and inclusion are all Jupiter’s business. In the sign of Virgo we want to perfect ourselves and adjust to our ideal vision. The downside of this is that we can get caught up with details and trying too hard to make it “right”. This could become especially problematic when Jupiter opposes Neptune in Pisces during early September. Here we have Neptunian dreams, idealistic visions and a desire to manifest a better future but with a tendency to lose sight of where we are going by either getting lost in the details, being hyper critical of others or becoming overly expansive, unrealistic and confused about what is really required.
This potential trend will likely continue on into 2016 as the challenging square aspect from Saturn in Sagittarius makes contact with Neptune in Pisces in late November 2015 and throughout most of the following year. Whilst practical Saturn is pushing for a reality check, saying let’s be serious and make a mature commitment to something worthwhile and tangible, Neptune is asking us to transcend all the material and mundane aspects of life and allow another reality to become apparent. The task here will be to become clear about what is real and what is an illusion. What is a practical solution and what is pure ideology.
This will be a trying time for many as the clash between capitalism and socialism is enacted on the social and political arena. On a personal level the need to balance physical reality with being spiritually aware will be uppermost for many. New ways of organising ourselves as a more inclusive society are being sought now as we attempt to put the old paradigm to rest, but there is no sound basis on which to build as yet. This will come as the required shifts in awareness become more prevalent in society and the current challenges are overcome. We are at a point of change, we are getting clear about what no longer works for us, but we may have to try out a few different options before we know what we truly prefer.
This year there are some zodiac degrees that are strongly highlighted Where they fall in your own birth chart will indicate the area of your life that is most activated. People with personal planets or significant points at those degrees will also be most affected. Aries Sun people born late March and early April will find it a particularly stimulating year. Late Pisces Sun people are in for an interesting year of new opportunities.
What’s in store for Ireland during 2015? Check back soon for 2015 part two.
The Astrology of 2013
Read more – Astrology of Solstice December 21st 2012
Saturn – Pluto
Saturn in Scorpio and Pluto in Capricorn will make three exact sextile aspects between December 2012 and September 2013. This pair are in mutual reception, (Saturn rules Capricorn and Pluto co-rules Scorpio) creating a supportive basis for the hard work involved in making necessary changes. This brings out the best qualities of these heavy duty planets providing some stability and allowing the use of will power to get through the more disruptive times.
The major astrological influence of our current time continues to be the square aspect between Uranus and Pluto. It first became exact during late June 2011 and will continue its influence until early 2016. I wrote extensively on this pair in the 2012 forecast and we’ll see more of the same effects throughout this year as it makes an exact angle twice, first on 20th May and again 1st November. This challenging dynamic brings revolution and power struggles which cause us to undergo a major shift of focus. Some people will have begun the shift already for others it will come later. “If we want to have freedom from material restraints (Uranus) we have to be purged of self importance and become honourable (Pluto). The struggle will be acted out on many levels as we are forced to face ourselves. We have to question what is really true and appropriate and what have we blindly accepted as a convenient or comfortable assertion.” Slowly as we become more conscious of ourselves and our motivations we will begin to see that whatever occurs in our world is a direct result of our own inner state of being. There will continue to be conflict and struggle in the world only whilst we are in conflict within ourselves. The peace and comfort we seek in the world will develop naturally as we cultivate a peaceful relationship with ourselves.
Saturn – Neptune – Jupiter
During the summer months we will see a series of trine aspects that culminate in a Grand water trine. This type of aspect is considered the most harmonious or beneficial and allows the planets involved to work easily together. Saturn in Scorpio made the first trine aspect to Neptune in Pisces in October 2012, the second is on 11th June and again on 19th July. On the 17th July Jupiter in Cancer moves into range to complete a triangular pattern known as a Grand Trine, in water signs. With Saturn representing “reality” and Neptune as the dream or illusory world ,we can bring the two together with ease. Be careful what you wish for! With Jupiter in Cancer adding to the mix expect an increased ability to manifest your desires and reach for the stars. Emotional responses can be exaggerated during this time but if you have honed your senses to be spiritually orientated this could even be a mystical experience. It’s important though not to let your imagination run wild as you may find you can be convinced of something that actually has no substance. At worst this could bring a spate of over zealous idealism.
Comets – Signs & Portents
This year we are told to expect two comets to pass close by and even be visible during the day light. The first should arrive by late February and remain visible during March whilst the second should be visible in the Northern hemisphere from October through to December. In traditional astrology a comet was considered a herald of major disruption to government or the fall of empires and kings. Until the comet makes itself visible it’s hard to predict it’s significance on a mundane level. We already know that this is likely to be a game changing year and the chances of there being major political upheaval is certainly on the cards. Meanwhile, we will have to, literally, watch this space!
The anticipation has built over years, maybe even decades, and now finally the year 2012 is here. “Is this the end of the world or civilisation as we know it?” It may be surprising to some that with such a focus on this particular twelve months, the coming year doesn’t really produce the earth shattering astrological configurations we’ve been led to expect. That’s not to say though that there’s nothing of significance being enacted in the heavens during 2012.
An Unfolding Story
A major part of an astrologers work is to study and translate the “story” that’s being told as the planets move through our skies making their aspects and alignments. An advantage the astrologer has through watching the “signs and portents” is that it becomes obvious there’s a continuous unfolding of events occurring in cycles and series that stretch out over differing periods of time. The Sun cycle takes about 365 days to complete, our measurement of a year. Our Moon has a 29.5 day cycle and this in turn has a larger pattern of about 19 solar years. Mars takes around two solar years, Jupiter twelve and so on. Pluto’s slow progress takes 248 years to complete one full turn. It’s from the idea that we are about to complete a very very long cycle that has given this year its apocalyptic status.
Much of the emphasis on 2012 comes from the Mayan long count calendar which covers a cycle of thousands of solar years. Calculations have suggested it will complete on 20 December 2012 with a new long count starting on 21st December. Others have claimed it ended on 28th October 2011. Although an Astrological event may take place at a specific time we experience the effect from the configuration of slow moving planets over several years. Within such huge eons of time an exact date becomes a minor issue and we are actually no more likely to notice anything tangible on those dates than we are at the Solstice or Equinox each year. What we are experiencing now though is the culmination of many cycles and the beginning of a new era. But as with the nature of time, it doesn’t all happen at once!
The last few years have been dominated by several major configurations featuring planets in cardinal signs making stressful cross and T square formations, notably a series of five Saturn Uranus oppositions. From 2008 to 2011 we experienced a dramatic period of upheaval and a turning point for the majority of the world’s population in which the political, social, cultural, and economic challenges of the last decades reached a peak. Global financial, political and religious structures crumbled as systems of government failed the ordinary people they were meant to serve.
Uranus Square Pluto
By mid 2011, Uranus, planet of idealism and revolution had moved into Aries whilst Pluto, planet of destruction and renewal became firmly established in Capricorn.
The powerful effect of their interaction is seen in the great evolutionary upheaval they initiate amongst the various population groups around the world.
The influence of these outer planets on any of us as individuals depends on where they fall into our own birth chart.
These two heavyweights of transformation started to form a challenging square aspect during July 2011 and we got a taste of things to come. This volatile combination is the signature of the next few years.
The Uranian archetype is altruistic and wants unrestricted freedom of expression. It is innovative and breaks through the constraints of established order. Whilst in Pisces it was prey to self delusion and couldn’t grasp the truth amongst the smoke and mirrors. Now, and for the next seven years, it’s in feisty Aries and we have a call to action, confrontation too if necessary. It serves to overthrow complacency and disrupt the status quo. It may bring chaos and apparent anarchy which will be more difficult for some people than others, but this too happens regularly in cycles. It last occurred 84 years ago during the early 1930’s.
Pluto differs in its expression but also represents an archetype which ultimately works in the interests of our combined evolutionary development. Through the process of degeneration and decay something new can emerge. This is a principal of life and death and an ongoing cycle represented all around us. We often fear this undeniable force and attempt to control its effects but that only creates stress and often pain, emotional or physical. Eventually we all have to let go to a greater force. It has the effect of overthrowing personal agendas in favour of the “good of all”. The Pluto archetype is about a journey which somehow transforms us into something further along in our shared evolution. Whilst in Capricorn, Pluto will be at work on our structures, systems and organisations. Thus we see it working to undermine the control of governments, religion and the judicial systems. Everything that we have built up over time that has crystallised or fossilised, keeping us within its constraints, must now be broken down and rebuilt.
When the forces of Uranus and Pluto come together we can expect some rapid and comprehensive changes. The last powerful combination was during the 1960’s when there were mass demonstrations and social upheavals. There was a lot of experimenting with communal living, mind blowing drugs and anti establishment attitudes. Social norms were overthrown, rigid class divisions dissolved and the “modern” social era emerged.
This current square aspect is the first major challenge to the changes that came out of that social revolution. It first became exact during late June 2011 and will continue its influence until early 2016.
The challenge we have to face is rooted in our sense of individualism. There are serious questions to ask about our own personal integrity. It is rapidly becoming obvious throughout the world that those who we have entrusted with power are now exercising a very questionable authority. But it’s easy to see it in another person. During the coming years the spotlight will eventually turn inwards and we have to look at where we’re in conflict with our own standards of behaviour. If we want to have freedom from material restraints (Uranus) we have to be purged of self importance and become honourable (Pluto).The struggle will be acted out on many levels as we are forced to face ourselves. We have to question what is really true and appropriate and what have we blindly accepted as a convenient or comfortable assertion.
Human rights, individual freedom and choice will be confronted by those who desire to hold power. Suppression, force or manipulation is likely to be used in an attempt to achieve supremacy and we can choose to go along with it or not.
We can expect a build up of increasing pressure until sufficient power exists to crash through the established political, financial and religious structures and remove the outmoded ways of being, within them.
This time period will seem chaotic and disruptive but it is essential to clear away systems, governments and social divisions that no longer serve us. The next few years will be both exciting and confusing. We still don’t know exactly how things are going to take shape and there may have to be several changes before it settles into something workable. Focusing on personal integrity, core values and removing obstacles to social co-operation within your community will help keep you connected to something dependable.
Rare Occultation of Venus
Another completion takes place this summer echoing the theme of new beginnings. On 5th June Venus passes over the Sun at 15 degrees Gemini, in what’s known as an occultation. As with an eclipse the planet passes in front of the Sun and can be observed from earth, a phenomenon occurs in pairs about eight years apart approximately every 121 years. Previous occasions have been 1631, 1639, then 1761, 1769, followed by 1874, 1882. The first of the current phase was on June 8th 2004. This once in a lifetime event often coincides with a period of social and economic reformation and is the herald for a new set of personal and social values. The last few years has seen a shift in values of all kinds, personal yes, but also financial and with how we relate to physical resources like food, water and land use.
Venus, goddess of love and beauty and planet of attraction tells us about what we value. We have an innate desire to interact with others and to be attractive and desirable so we can “belong” to a social group, partner or family. She uses the energy of attraction to bring what we value to us through a kind of magnetism of likeness. When Venus joins with the Sun in such a spectacular way their energies are combined and it’s as if Venus becomes infused with the brilliance of the Suns power, like a light getting turned on, in a big way. It’s as if the Sun, our solar heart, is imparting its message through our social values. The expression “hearts desire” comes to mind with this symbolism and I would expect that whatever yours is, it will be magnified by this conjunction. If you want to know what your true hearts desire is then take time during this rare event to tune in and find out. In Mercury ruled Gemini the emphasis is on communications and making connections. We could see a change in the way we use social media this year. Venus also makes a square to Mars and this event will bring to light the methods used to get what we want and at what cost on a deeper personal level. Expect to experience a heartfelt reaching out to others in direct challenge to those who choose conflict as their form of communication.
Neptune in Pisces
The third major influence this year is Neptune starting a 13 year journey through its own sign, Pisces. It’s been in Aquarius since 1998 and made a temporary move into Pisces from April to July 2011 when we got a taste of its potential. Neptune is another of the evolutionary planets and acts to break down barriers and dissolve physical boundaries that divide us. The sign of Pisces is the last in the Zodiac cycle and represents the return to a spiritual state beyond material limitations. Its territory is the realm of dreams and mystical experience as well as chaos and disorder. At worst we will be prey to deception or a refusal to accept stark realities preferring to remain in a comfortable denial. Potentially though, we can expect a growing wave of compassion and upsurge in yearning for connection with our spiritual home. The principals of brotherly love and human kindness are easily characterized in this combination.
2012 is probably the year when we finally see that real and profound changes are taking place. It’s happening so fast now that we cant fail to notice. This is a necessary change because we’ve gone as far as we can down a particular path and the systemic problems are deep and entrenched. The very way people relate to each other will need to evolve before the transformation is complete. The next few years will teach us some hard lessons but humanity will survive. What’s happening now will teach us that individual survival is dependant on co-operating with each other, not opposing, or controlling, but through mutual respect. It will also become apparent as we re-organise our societies that everyone will need to take equal responsibility for the society we live in and it can no longer be delegated to someone else. Humanity is about to “grow up”.
“Become the person who you would like to have around if your well being depended on you” (Anonymous)
We start the month under the influence of the August 29th New Moon in Virgo. We can watch for the first glimpse of the slender crescent just after sunset if the skies are clear. Look for it above the horizon and just slightly to the left of where the sun set. The New Moon phase marks the beginning of the Lunar cycle which comes to its peak at the following Full Moon. This month it also falls in Virgo reinforcing the qualities of that sign. It’s a month for harvesting and reaping what we’ve sown as we move towards the vernal equinox on the 23rd. The last New Moon made a harmonious trine with both Pluto, the planet of transformation and Jupiter “the great benevolent” just as Jupiter slows to turn retrograde. It’s a time when we can make good progress in our journey towards greater understanding as Virgo lends us the qualities of discernment and refining, attention to detail, adaptability and determination. As Jupiter travels in retrograde until late December we internalise our urge towards expansion and superior knowledge and reflect on the greater meaning of recent events in our lives. The small but powerful Pluto which has been retrograde since early April turns to retread it’s steps through early Capricorn as it goes forward once more from the 16th. This release of energy might see a slow but deliberate change in the way we have been dealing with our “elephant in the room”. The reality of what was previously too painful or unacceptable to mention can no longer be ignored and has to be dealt with. We have though been on a journey and with these insights we now take a new approach and move into the final quarter of the year. The events in early August were a wake up call to what needs our urgent attention. Pluto came within one degree of the challenging square angle from Uranus which sets the theme for 2012 -2015. Pluto represents power struggles or control issues, taboo subjects as well as big business, corruption and dept. It also highlights the need to co-operate and share with another. It brings to light where we exert our personal will at the expense of others. The erratic planet Uranus encourages revolution and sometimes chaos as a means of breaking free from domination or erroneous values. The message from the planets show that we cannot continue to ignore what is creating stress in our lives. As we go through the next few years we will have to address situations where we’ve failed to take responsibility for our choices and use of resources or where we’ve offloaded the blame for our lack of physical well-being or inner peace on to someone else. This is a powerfully transformational period we’re entering and certainly not one to be afraid of.
The potential for beneficial opportunities and great leaps forward were written in the sky with a partial Solar eclipse in Capricorn and the Jupiter Uranus conjunction in Pisces on 4 January. Astrologically the New Year got off to a flying start. The Capricorn theme of personal endeavour or duty and responsibility combined with an enthusiasm for change will be evident as the year unfolds. The full effects of an eclipse can take several weeks or months to materialise but are often triggered by a swift moving planet passing over the zodiac degree it was in at the time. The first possibility is when quicksilver messenger planet Mercury does so on the 23rd just after Jupiter enters the feisty sign of Aries. This could be the time to speak out against an affront to individual freedom or perhaps you get news of someone taking a stand in defiance against a perceived injustice. The Sun finally leaves the Capricorn sign of the sea goat just hours after it shines its full light on the Moon. The Full Moon represents a culmination and provides a release point, a letting go or time of completion and endings as we prepare to move into the next phase. Potentials that were set in motion during the previous New Moon can come to fruition. This is especially true now as it falls at 29 degrees of the nurturing sign of Cancer. The last degree of a sign is traditionally considered to be critical or a decisive turning point. At the same time the Moon, strong in her own sign makes a beneficial trine aspect to both abundant Jupiter and freedom loving Uranus. So we can expect some fresh starts or maybe even an unexpected turn of events which leads us in a new and positive direction. This maybe one of those “lucky accident” moments that unburdens us of something we didn’t know how to get out of on our own. The month ends as Capricorn’s ruling planet Saturn, turns to move backwards through Libra for the next several weeks. This is when we have the chance to revisit the responsibilities, ties and commitments we have made to others and reconsider or re-negotiate the terms so they are sustainable and can withstand the test of time.
As we leave 2010 behind some of us may breathe a sigh of relief. It was a tough year all round. The tense cardinal T square that dominated the astrological pattern since 2008 has fulfilled its purpose. The financial, political and religious systems that we had in place have shown themselves to be broken, or at least in desperate need of an overhaul. Much of what we thought we were sure of in the world has to be redefined. We need to find new ways forward because going back isn’t an option. We start 2011 with an uncertain landscape. The astrology for this year reinforces the movement towards change and innovation with an absence of stressful aspects from the outer planets.
Jupiter, known as the great benefic, takes the leading role in the heavens this year. He represents our goals and aspirations, religion, philosophy, law, ideals and all that makes us bigger or better. The only negative side to the great planet is when under difficult planetary influences there is a tendency towards excess or too much of a good thing! This year though the theme is towards growth and increase in all that he touches. After a conjunction to Uranus in January, he makes a challenging square to Pluto in February, a difficult opposition to Saturn in March, an easy sextile to Neptune in June and a beneficial trine to Pluto in July and October. How these aspects affect you personally depends on where they fall in your own birth chart.
Using the 1949 chart (creation of the republic) for Ireland we see that this year the country is choosing or reaffirming its identity and path forward. This is a turning point, a time of transition and restructuring. Though the early year will be marked with changes, disruptions and adjustments as the months progress we can begin to see there are rewards for sacrifice, patience and perseverance.
A potent solar eclipse on January 4 marks the beginning of a 14 year cycle as it brings the expansive planet Jupiter together with innovative Uranus together in Pisces for the third and final conjunction. The previous two occasions last year were in June and September whilst making stressful aspects to Saturn and Pluto creating disruptive and volatile situations. Now in January we experience a harmonious trine to beneficial Venus instead. This is likely to highlight our true values with an urge to make a leap of faith or take a risk to achieve ‘being true to ourselves’. For Ireland as a whole this falls in the area of the chart which represents our communications especially amongst neighbours and kinfolk. It also makes a challenging aspect to Uranus in the chart which represents the people’s individuality and sense of freedom. This is a time for breaking out of old patterns, structures and routines and for discovering the uniqueness of the nation. Expect occasional periods of emotional excitability, unrest and instability. We will see more demonstrations which express the values of the country and an increase in radical activities which voice the desire for reform or revolution.
During February there is a need to look closely at the problems in the property market as Jupiter challenges Pluto on 25th and causes stresses in the global economy. Also with pressure from big finance the nation could feel the burden as Saturn opposes Ireland’s Sun. There may be a departure or break in leadership as politicians face up to individual responsibilities.
March is the time to get a shoulder behind the obstacle and give it a gentle shove. We are at another new cycle point indicating social and political change. On the 28th Jupiter is opposite Saturn which represents the established status quo. This half way mark in the great Jupiter Saturn cycle coincides with the Mars in Ireland’s chart. Successful action can be achieved if there is enough determination. This is an excellent business period, or time for initiating enterprises and starting new projects. It is also one of the best transits possible for making decisions and negotiating deals, just be sure to avoid the “get-rich-quick schemes”. A strong and assertive effort to put ideals into action is called for.
During April or by the end of May we could well have taken that leap of faith. We certainly will have turned a corner and found new leadership. Also there is sense of invigoration as exciting potentials for enterprise emerge. Priorities are decided. Old contracts are torn up either metaphorically or literally and there seems to be hope on the horizon now. This is a quiet period astrologically but things are still happening in our daily lives and this is a chance to feel that some good work has been done.
June and July bring two more solar eclipses. On June 1 there is a positive aspect to Saturn which provides realism and stability and this is reflected in Ireland’s chart. On July1 the eclipse is followed on 7th by Jupiter making the first of three harmonious aspects to Pluto. This suggests the beginning of a phase in which a new style of business ventures or projects can prosper. These are likely to be successful when built on sound sustainable principles. During this time it is important to guard against any over speculation or false optimism. Non material gains are highlighted during these summer months with a reforming of social, spiritual and moral ideals.
Towards the end of July we may see some more unrest as the need to assert the individuality of the nation becomes an issue. There could be power struggles in several countries worldwide during August as the fight for control of resources reaches a peak. There maybe some hints of the issues we will have to face over the next few years as Uranus moves closer to making a difficult square aspect to Pluto. These undercurrents herald the movement towards a new social political balance globally.
The autumn months of the year don’t bring any major astrological events and the job of reforming our civil organisations continues. The mood is generally one of patience and perseverance with a good amount of constructive optimism thrown in. Ireland will continue to adjust to its new position in life and refine its vision for the future. Jupiter makes its third trine to Pluto on October 28 and the process of revitalising the social, financial and welfare systems towards their new potential has been firmly established.
The fourth solar eclipse of the year occurs in Sagittarius on November 25 and signals another ending of an era as it makes way for the next phase. Ireland has been through the first stages of re-inventing itself and has a clearer idea of the way forward. The next few years will see many other countries taking their own steps towards reclaiming their identity and integrity as the rebalancing process continues into 2012.
The Astrology of 2010
The Astrology of 2010 shows us that it is not just another year. As the leading governments of the world resolve for us to recuperate from the recession, our personal lives are changing at an accelerating pace. This year prepares the way into 2012 and beyond. During these next few years our way of life as we now know it, will be radically transformed to embrace a new paradigm of thought and social conduct.
As 2009 drew to a close there was a general sense of having come through something. It was a difficult year for us at home and far worse for many in other parts of the globe. If you’re still here then it means you must have survived. Throughout last year the most powerful astrological configurations of the first decades of this century have been shaping up. Most of us have seen a huge change in our everyday lives as the “boom to bust” set in. It’s been hard to make plans for the future as the present circumstances are demanding that we give them our best attention. We’ve begun to acknowledge the reality of the economic situation which started to reveal its hard hitting impact in late 2008. Since then there has been a lot of water under the bridge – in many senses! For 2010 the main theme is ending the old and beginning the new. We reach a critical peak in a pattern that continues to play out and set the scene for the next several years. A dominant and tense T-square formation involves the potent planets Saturn, Uranus and Pluto. This rare and significant configuration activates three vital degrees in our Zodiac. This is a momentous year for us all.
A Critical Time for Ireland
While Saturn opposes Uranus in the sky they are both square to Pluto and they each touch critical points in the 1949 chart for Ireland. Saturn the traditionalist is holding the position of authority and public status. Uranus is the revolutionary and is making its opposition from the “grass roots” level of the chart. Pluto is the seat of power between them, challenging them both and it sits directly on Irelands Moon which represents the mood and response of the nation.
The first of five Saturn Uranus oppositions was during 2008 in Mutable signs Virgo and Pisces. This created the changeable conditions we’ve seen through 2009. The final opposition of 26 July is at zero degrees of Aries and Libra. These points mark the spring and autumn Equinox. Together with the Solstice points of Cancer and Capricorn they make up the Cardinal cross of the Zodiac. Cardinal signs mark the seasons and signify new trends, fresh starts and renewal. People with personal planets here will be most strongly affected by the transformation. This complex astrological pattern symbolically represents a dramatic period of upheaval and a turning point for the majority of the world’s population in which political, social, cultural, and economic challenges of the last decades reach a peak and demand resolution. The stresses involved in this dynamic will ensure we can’t carry on repeating our mistakes. We have to find a new way forward now. This is the beginning of a new era.
A New Cycle of Experience
The last time we saw a similar pattern was during the early 1930’s when the major financial systems of the world experienced a collapse. What followed was the Great Depression, which then led to a radical new direction in many world governments.
During 2010 though, we have another dimension to the configuration which suggests this is not just a repeat performance. From mid April, Jupiter joins up with Uranus in this hard aspect formation. Both planets will be moving back and forth between Pisces and Aries through to 2011. Pisces and Aries are the end and beginning of the zodiac reinforcing the theme that we are moving into a new cycle of experience.
To fully understand the astrological significance of the momentous events taking place throughout this year we need to look at the key players and their positions in a little more depth.
Jupiter – Uranus
Jupiter is the planet of expansion, opportunity and speculation. The big planet is generally beneficial to all it encounters bringing good fortune and optimism. Increase is a good description of its action. Jupiter’s urge to increase can also lead us to excess and overindulgence or rash and foolhardy risk taking. The influence of Uranus also makes a risk taker but with a different twist. He will fight fearlessly for the freedom to be an individual. A rebel, he is capable of overthrowing the existing regime without a care for what is discarded in the name of the cause. Uranus can be a sudden bolt from the blue that shakes things out of a rut. It can be eccentric and stimulate thinking outside the box. Jupiter and Uranus in combination are a mighty force for change. This pairing can create entrepreneurship, individualistic thinking, ingenuity and long range speculation but can also represent radical extremism in all its guises. Watch out for a major scientific leap or breakthrough this year that will change our thinking and transform our lives for the future. Whilst in the sign of Pisces there is an imaginative element or otherworldly quality. This can vary from the inspired to the escapist. In Aries the energy is very different. There is a strong competitive and assertive energy which doesn’t take much time to think of consequences. It’s all action, impulsive headstrong and forceful. As this pair move into Aries and team up in early June expect some sweeping and extreme responses to the old established order which Saturn represents.
Saturn also represents due care, responsibility and hard work. He is the ‘party pooper’ who opposes any extravagant or ‘accumulation at any cost’ attitude of the reckless Jupiter-Uranus in Aries combination. Sometimes he operates out of fear of change and sometimes it’s to prevent a disaster. Though whenever Saturn makes an appearance you can be sure there are hard lessons to learn. The lessons are described by Saturn’s journey through Virgo and into Libra. In Virgo since 2007 the lesson has been about our understanding of the Planet Earth as nurturer of life. The environment, our natural resources, food quality, and our vulnerability to the climate have all been major issues in the news headlines. At the end of 2009 Saturn moved into Libra but will just turn back to Virgo briefly this spring. The Saturn in Libra lesson is all about our relationships with others. Libra has equality and sharing on its mind. The sign of the scales is weighing things up and seeing how far it tips in one direction. We will have to address the balance now. Global inequalities will be shown up, and closer to home we have work to do too.
At right angles to the Saturn opposite Jupiter-Uranus combination is Pluto. His position is challenging both ends of the argument. Pluto is symbolic of our two worlds, the inner, underworld or private life and our outer public life. Pluto’s dual characteristic is there to challenge our will. It shows us where we hold on to power to keep control and highlights where we have failed to take responsibility by giving our power away. It brings to light what we have hidden. Deep shame, guilty secrets and deception are all exposed. Any concealed self-seeking behaviour is revealed in its relentless task of purging and transforming. In Capricorn, Pluto is methodical and measured, he is practical and patient and he has a goal. The goal is that through diligence, utilising the tested and true methods which honour mankind’s higher principals, a more sustainable, durable way of living will be established. With Pluto you can choose to go along willingly or resist and struggle painfully. Whichever way you choose, Pluto is taking you anyhow.
The Year Unfolds
The year starts whilst energetic Mars is retrograde (appears to move backwards). It’ll be hard to get things moving. There’s a sense of enthusiasm to make a fresh start but this is hampered until Mars starts forward again on 10 March. Saturn also goes retrograde on 13 January and we revisit some of the same issues we had last autumn. If what we fear or can’t face has been suppressed and buried then the Saturn-Pluto combination forces it into the light.
Saturn started to make this difficult square angle to Pluto last October and repeats it in late January and Mid August. It insists that the dirty secrets of any underhand, self-seeking or exploitative behaviour are ousted from within, exposing those in authority that once held our respect. People used to being in control will resist for as long as possible but the power of Pluto ensures that we might see more figures in authority, the church and politics under close scrutiny. Many who feel let down will abandon their church, institution or political party and become increasingly cynical.
Jupiter in Pisces
Jupiter encourages growth and moves into his own sign of Pisces on 18 January staying there until early June. In compassionate Pisces we’ll notice a greater tolerance for differences, a better understanding of human frailties and shortcomings. In Ireland, throughout the first half of the year there will be a strong emphasis on strengthening community ties. People will make more of their immediate surroundings, travelling less distance and getting more involved in local networks. We could see an increase in local initiative groups. Goodwill extends to our neighbours as we find new ways to share and give needed support.
Low Point for Ireland
When Saturn Squares Ireland’s Moon in mid March there is no doubt that life is not a bed of roses and the country is feeling it. The demands of the country’s financial responsibilities may seem heavier than ever and there are no external supports. The mood is low. People have lost faith in their leaders and pressure builds for the government to take whatever practical steps are necessary to move forward. This will create tension as there is still a need to rake over the past before we can move on.
With Saturn moving over the area of Ireland’s chart which signifies our political and financial status the emphasis is on the task of rebuilding and restoring the country’s damaged economy. During March through to May, attention will tend to turn towards internal affairs as the country tries to understand and make sense of its new direction. There are clashes as the government traditionalists want to continue to prop up the financial institutions and the reformers want radical changes to take place. There will be difficulties later if those in power don’t give some time to re-inventing our identity as a country and listening to the “common man”.
As Ireland continues to work harder than ever before to strengthen its position the whole population will shoulder more of the responsibility. Mid March and early August events could bring home the reality of the situation. Sacrifices made now will be worth it in the long-term. The country’s leaders need to act responsibly and honourably at this time, because our international reputation is at stake. If those responsible fail in their duty there is a very real danger of falling from grace and damaging our political and financial standing in the eyes of others.
During late March and late July we have the opportunity for careful and sustainable growth. This can be a good time for expanding in business, or investing in property or real estate whilst there is a good balance between caution and optimism. This is when it is less likely to over-extend either financially or physically.
During mid June we experience the beginning of a new fourteen year cycle of opportunity. Although the effects of the new phase won’t become apparent for several years, now is the time to invest in entrepreneurship, innovation and sustainable long term projects. Throughout June there is a greater sense of optimism and investments are better rewarded. We have the opportunity to make long term investments in energy technologies, using our natural resources and developing community initiatives.
Social and Economic Struggle
The lunar eclipse of June 26 at 4° Capricorn conjuncts Pluto and activates the approaching grand cross involving the Sun, Mercury, Jupiter, Uranus, the Moon, and Saturn – all within 5° of the four cardinal points. This is a momentous event and likely to have a far reaching impact on the global situation as new information, technologies and discoveries show us new possibilities. The full effect of the eclipse will emerge as events unfold in various places throughout the world during late September.
During July and August, Saturn and Uranus will be completing the last of their five oppositions. At the same time, Mars will have just entered Libra to join Saturn whilst Jupiter moves into Aries with Uranus. This is the major Astrological configuration of the year and although it acts as a trigger point the events during these months will be unpredictable and unexpected. Expect though, a major social and economic struggle between the new and the old, the traditional and the radical, in which both sides spar and harden against each other. It is very much a time to choose one and leave the other behind. Prejudices increase, along with paranoia and general fear of the unknown, leading many to cling to false idols either defending or advancing them dangerously. What is needed now is a movement that leads us to what is “right” and also profitable. In the enthusiasm for a new cause or idea a little too much or ill-placed force can undermine everything. There is a general climate right now for making judgment errors. Unfortunately once made, there is usually no going back.
For Ireland the struggle is between the needs of its domestic life and its global presence.
Whilst Jupiter makes its retrograde journey from 23 July to 18 November across the area of the chart for Ireland that deals with communications don’t be surprised if you detect a lot of “spin” and insincere talk coming from every direction. This is a time when any spurious talk becomes apparent and the current mood could be quite damning. Jupiter moving backwards is also a great opportunity to do restoration work or revitalise failing businesses but not great for initiating new enterprises. There may be the need to put a lot more investment into projects but don’t expect the returns during this phase.
During late September and into December there is a chance to review and rebuild. Ireland has now been forced to realise the burden of national debt. This in turn is a challenge to rejuvenate the country’s economy. The major financial institutions will now have to operate in favour of smaller business and community ventures.
Into early 2011 there will continue to be struggles as opposing forces grapple with new ideas versus old systems. Many long range sustainable projects and new innovations start to emerge.
By the time Uranus forms a square to Pluto in Capricorn in 2012-2013 there will have been tremendous cultural, social and political upheaval which will further transform governments and political structures. The paradigm shift is underway.
September is traditionally the month of the harvest. Both Full and New Moon phase occur in the sign of Virgo who is associated with the goodness of the earth and the Goddess as nurturer of life. The Sun leaves Virgo on the 22nd and moves into Libra as it passes the equinox point heading for the Midwinter Solstice once more. This month’s big story though is Saturn conjunct the Sun/Moon at New Moon on the 18th combined with the opposition between Saturn and Uranus which is exact again on the 15th. This opposition has been the backdrop to current events for the last year and will continue through to autumn 2010. The first exact opposition was on November 4 2008, the day of the latest US elections. This month sees the third of five exact “hits” at 25° Virgo/Pisces. People with personal planets in that area of their chart will be strongly affected. We will all be touched by this influence and the area of life where it will be most apparent is wherever that degree occurs in our birth chart. Saturn will often make us sharply aware of reality and can sometimes seem harsh or negative, bringing us back down to earth with a thump. Saturn reminds us of our responsibilities but also gives a reliable stability in what otherwise could be confusion or chaos. Uranus, the opposing force is known for its rebellious and unpredictable influence yet helps us to break out of limiting restrictions. The last sequence of Uranus/Saturn oppositions during 1965-66 gave rise to a cultural revolution. Perhaps we can already see the emergence of a new set of social values that will be the current legacy. The New Moon is always the beginning of a new phase, an inward, reflective time out of which the next phase is born. On a personal level whilst Saturn joins with the Sun and Moon we may need to take time to reflect on our true responsibilities and allow the possibility of renewed commitment. We might get the feeling that we are in for the long haul and that might seem daunting at first. Saturn can also remind us that some of the most valued experiences or successes have taken a long time to manifest, evolve or mature. Like the seasonal harvest a lot of preparation, hard work and personal investment are involved to reap true rewards. The nature of Virgo is to work diligently, ironing out any flaws and nurturing her venture into maturity. With Uranus urging us on to abandon old ways and take a new approach we must remember all great visions for a better future need the careful planning and dedication to a task that the Saturn in Virgo combination is offering us now.
This month we experience an astrological event that won’t happen again until 2244. Jupiter orbits the Sun every 12-13 years, whilst Pluto’s journey through the Zodiac takes 246 years to complete. Consequently Jupiter catches up with Pluto approximately every 13th year and this conjunction will occur in the sign Sagittarius on 11th December.
Jupiter’s cycle shows the ebb and flow of ideological and financial power. Mass changes of consciousness occur at the start of each new cycle bringing new collective beliefs. There will often be enormous ideological power battles in society. When Jupiter, the beneficial planet of expansion, belief, faith and optimism combines with Pluto, planet of transformation, power, and regeneration we can expect global changes in our faith and understanding regarding religious and financial authorities. This is the beginning of the next 13 year Jupiter cycle and it combines with Pluto changing Zodiac signs, occurring only every 12 to 30 years.
Pluto has been travelling through Sagittarius since 1995 and has brought profound spiritual and religious transformations as humanity has been confronted with an uncertain future. The journey to find personal value and meaning in life leads eventually to a reform in beliefs and social values. This 13 year process is completing now as Pluto moves through the last degrees of Sagittarius into Capricorn, late January 2008, thus beginning the next process which continues until 2024. We can already begin to see the initial stages of this new phase as Pluto in the sign of Capricorn ushers in earth-shaking transformations of political structures, and the death of old political parties which have outlived their usefulness. We will likely see the collapse of outdated and decadent regimes as new systems of government rise from the ashes. In the business world many upheavals will take place as new business strategies replace the old economic views and business practices.
There seems to be plenty of auspicious signs for a joyous midwinter celebration even with widespread turmoil and devastation occurring around the globe. The Solstice moment, when the Sun moves into Capricorn and begins its return journey bringing the longer days once more, falls on December 22nd. The next day the Sun Conjuncts Jupiter bringing bounty and plenty and bright prospects are available to those who choose to tune in to it. Overstated enthusiasm may be the main problem when the Sun opposes Mars at the Full Moon on the 24th, as intentions and the ability to fulfil them are a bit at odds and it can be two steps forward, one step back for everyone. The resulting frustration can fuel disputes or engender discouragement. Rash moves, overblown feelings, emotional conflict, and anger can be lurking around the corner, so today’s the right day to take it easy and not push, or be pushed, too far. If you can take all this in your stride then there’s no reason for anything other than peace and goodwill this Christmas.
The next New Moon is at 17° Sagittarius on the 9th December at 5:42 pm with the next Full Moon at 2° Cancer on the 24th at 1:16 am