Astrologers are united in attributing the global shock waves of the recent U.S. election to revolutionary Uranus in Aries and transformational Pluto in Capricorn. These transcendent planets are in the first quarter “crisis of action” phase of their current 163-year cycle that began with the 1966 conjunction in Virgo and will end in 2104 when they align in Taurus. The current 90° angle alignment is a blip in time (within a 10° orb from 2007 to 2020) in relation to their repeating cycles that have been spiraling through the cosmos for eons. In evolutionary terms, we’re at a crossroads of determining what will be our collective guiding philosophy through this phase, and it is clear that there are vociferous views about which belief system we should follow. It may be “just a phase” that will pass, but from the “as above, so below” perspective the square manifests as tension that spurs us to action and generally brings about a significant change in course. One only needs to review the history of past Uranus/Pluto cycles to see that it has revolution written all over it, and to look at the seed ideas planted in the 1960s to see what themes are prevalent in this one: civil rights, women’s rights and environmental causes to name a few.
Over the next month, planetary influences underscore this process of philosophical inquiry. On November 21st, the central force of our solar system representing the core of who we are, our will and purpose enters philosophical Sagittarius. The Sun joins Saturn and Mercury in the sign of the Archer giving us a multi-faceted perspective to explore what ideas can hold us together as a society, what threads of thought will weave our individual lives into the civilized structures that house us, educate us, inspire us and nurture us. The seed ideas that were planted in the 1960s are finally sprouting, bursting forth into the light of the sun with the tremendous force of new birth. We now know what we are fighting for. If we do anything as this phase unfolds and our respective opinions and beliefs crash into those of our neighbors, may we come back to the creative solar principle and design our way out of this chaotic mess with transformational thoughts and revolutionary ideas that bridge the divide between us. The gift of Sagittarius according to Dane Rudhyar is “Comradeship – the art of living together.” In An Astrological Tryptych he writes: “True comradeship operates at a level where fanaticism and narrow bigotry cannot exist. It operates where all relationships can be simple, direct and rich with an immediacy of response to human feelings and individual needs; where there is no pride of position, nor pride of sex, no psychological obstructions thwarting the flow of sympathy from individual core to individual core.”
November 22nd to 23rd, the emphasis on unity in diversity builds as Mercury sextiles Jupiter and conjuncts Saturn. Mercury and Saturn are in the sign that Jupiter rules so their contact will generate an even greater impulse to expand on the themes the planets represent. Mercury/Jupiter is the archetypal essence of the philosophical thinker. Mercury/Saturn represents the voice of authority. Certainly their shadow sides are in there as well that can swing from overly confident big ideas to narrow and negative thinking. If we allow the higher manifestation of this trio of planets to work together, we may find a common ground between the abundance of Jupiter and the limitation of Saturn that produces a disciplined yet broad-vision, tolerant approach to our perceptions and the way we communicate with others. Although Jupiter in Libra, expanding our views on equality in relationships, and Saturn in Sagittarius, bringing pragmatism and discipline to our views on faith and knowledge, do not form an exact aspect until next summer, they are in a long-term sextile formation, remaining within 2° from late October 2016 through mid February 2017 when Jupiter turns retrograde. This is a positive, stabilizing alliance that mitigates the extremes of fear/contraction and exuberance/expansion represented by each planet that may assist us in finding a way to express with clarity our views on where society should go and hopefully bring civility back into the discourse on civilization. However, adding a wild card to the mix, all three planets are within orb of alignment to Uranus in Aries. Mercury makes an exact trine to Uranus on November 26th and thus acts as the unifying principle of perception weaving through the energies of the outer planets. The Mercury/Uranus planetary pair evokes brilliant as well as erratic thinking. Under this influence, we’re more likely to speak our truth than hold back for the sake of politesse. We’re also more likely to change our mind rather than stay stuck on an old idea that no longer serves.
November 24th through 29th the Uranus/Pluto square is activated when Venus in Capricorn and Jupiter in Libra move in to their degree space creating a powerful and tension-filled t-square formation that demands we own the responsibility for choices we’ve made. Once we do that, then we are able to respond with appropriate action. With Jupiter in the sign that Venus rules, the values and qualities associated with Venus and Libra are sure to dominate as they trigger the revolutionary forces of Uranus and Pluto. Powerful feminine voices around the world may make the headlines. Hillary Clinton may have lost the election but the frustration of women with their less than equal status in society is not lost in the minds and hearts of feminists everywhere, men and women included. Firebrand Elizabeth Warren continues to be the leading female voice in the U.S. Senate but she has an uphill battle with only 19% female representation in elected federal office and no gains made in this past election, putting the U.S. at 97th place out of 193 countries in the ranking of women’s parliamentary representation around the globe according to the Inter-Parliamentary Union. The “crisis of action” phase of a planetary cycle is a WAKE-UP call that spurs us to take action on that which we care about. As a society, it is frequently the masses suddenly rising up in solidarity that accounts for paradigm shifts in the evolution of civilization. Have we reached critical mass yet in the fight for women’s rights and civil rights? A “Women’s March in Washington” is planned for January 21, 2017, the day after the Presidential Inauguration, to send the message that “there is no true peace without justice and equity for all.” As the archetypes of equality and fairness (Venus) and law and ethics (Jupiter) align with the symbols for sudden breaks with convention (Uranus) and death/rebirth (Pluto), perhaps the united voice of the masses fighting for equality will galvanize into an action that will be heard, seen and felt around the world.
Mere hours before Venus completes her square to Uranus, the New Moon occurs at 8° Sagittarius on November 29th. Symbolizing the initiating phase in the Sun/Moon cycle, the energies of the heart (Sun) and soul (Moon) become potently united in rebooting our monthly lunar purpose from a new perspective. Operating through the lens of Sagittarius, the New Moon concentrates the focus on the Big Picture rather than details, but in that broad focus we may begin to see ourselves as part of that bigger picture. We are a whole within the whole of our family, within the whole of our city, which in turn is within the whole of our country, the world, the solar system, and sequentially through to the multi-verse of all existence beyond all time and space. This is the enthusiastic, constantly expanding Sagittarian way of perceiving that takes into account the broadest perspective possible in order to better understand the truth of who we are. The astral configurations unfolding during this time are infused into the new lunar cycle and thus will compel us to seek that truth in terms of the themes presented at the head of this cycle, namely the philosophy of equality for all and, as Rudhyar puts it, the meaning of simple human contact to bring about an experience of comradeship. The Sagittarian art of living together is no less than opening to the love that is “the Divine singing at the core of human relationships.”
The Sagittarian New Moon in a tight square to Neptune in Pisces challenges any rigid belief systems that may be operating. As the Sun moves into its exact square with Neptune on November 30th, our notions of what is truth may seem more diffused or dissolve altogether if they are not based on clear experiential knowledge rather than intellectual dogma. New information may come in the form of symbolic imagery or holographic visions that in an instant can lift our consciousness into a new place. Even if that experience lasts for just a short period of time, it can have a strong impact on our experience of connectedness. The more we cling to hand-me-down conditioning that has been dictating who we are and how we should behave, the more confused we may become under the Sun square Neptune influence. The process of taking responsibility for our way of being means that we cannot blame anyone else or any external event for our situation, or go into denial of what is, or escape it through diversions. Although Neptune’s wake-up call is more of a faint clear bell heard off in the distance than the blaring siren of the Uranus/Pluto square, it presents a still point on which we can focus if we but give it our attention.
Here’s the data (using Pacific Time and planetary positions rounded to the nearest whole degree, unless otherwise noted):
November 21 – Sun at 0° Sagittarius at 1:23 p.m.
November 22 – Mercury sextile Jupiter at 15° Sagittarius/Libra at 10:19 a.m.
November 23 – Mercury conjunct Saturn at 17° Sagittarius at 10:44 a.m.
November 24 – Jupiter square Pluto at 16° Libra/Capricorn at 2:42 p.m.
November 25 – Venus conjunct Pluto at 16° Capricorn at 3:48 a.m.
November 25 – Venus square Jupiter at 16° Libra/Capricorn at 5:45 a.m.
November 26 – Mercury trine Uranus at 21° Sagittarius/Aries at 5:38 a.m.
November 29 – Moon conjunct Sun (New Moon) at 8° Sagittarius at 4:18 a.m.
November 29 – Venus square Uranus at 21° Capricorn/Aries at 12:20 p.m.
November 30 – Sun square Neptune at 9° Sagittarius/Pisces at 5:17 p.m.