There are times when we know what we need to do. We see that things are clear and apparent. We may not like what we know we have to do, but at least we know we have to do it. The time period we are in right now is not even close to being like that. There are several reasons for it astrologically, but the chief culprit is the opposing nature of two very strong transits which are actually getting stronger each day. So, don’t be surprised if confusion and uncertainty continue operating for some time.
The first transit of interest is Jupiter moving toward its conjunction with Neptune on December 21, 2009. This will be its last conjunction and has lasted for the last 7 months or so. I’ve called this the theme of exuberant optimism. It’s so optimistic that one can feel good about things even if there’s no reason for it. It’s like the character played by Geoffrey Rush in “Shakespeare in Love” who, no matter how bad things were, when asked if things would work out he would always respond in the affirmative. The bewildered Shakespeare would then ask, “How can this work out?”, and his steady and consistent response would always be, “I don’t know, it’s a miracle!” Often, things did work out, which is why it is so important to have faith in ourselves and in life. Yet, there can always be too much of a good thing.
The Dow Jones remains high, reflecting the conviction that the recession is nearly over, even though unemployment remains very high and seems to be getting higher. There is also the feeling that we don’t really know what’s going on behind the scenes, although there is the sense that there’s something going on, that it’s not good, but we’re not sure of what it is or whether or not it’s as bad as we think. Neptune rules mystery, things that are hard to see and even deception. But hopefully things will work out, right? No, I mean right, right? Well, probably it will. We hope so, we’re pretty sure, yeah, it’s going to be fine. Phew, that was hard.
Then on the other side of the coin we have Saturn closing in on its square to Pluto which occurs for its first pass on November 15, 2009. Its nature is opposite to the previous transit (what was that again?), in that it is dark and can be pessimistic as it asks us to let go of anything we don’t need. The mood of this archetype can feel like things are much worse than they really are.
Wow!! The fact is that we are getting closer now to the point where these opposing forces are each getting stronger. How can this not create great confusion and uncertainty? So, for the most part, we must simply stay in the present as much as we can and wait until we can see more clearly what, if anything, we need to do.
Yet, there are hints. No matter how subtle, we can smell where the tide is taking us and that we’re going to have be making some hard decisions. The lesson here is to recognize where we are resisting change. That’s what we want to do, and that’s what makes the Saturn square to Pluto so difficult. If change is inevitable, isn’t it better to go with it and accept it? Well. Logically we know that it is, but the resistance can be deep, visceral and compelling. What is the anxiety this nation is feeling right now and how are many handling it? Panic, fear and a need to act out against all the ‘bad’ folk who are responsible for all the bad things that are happening. Anxiety, when understood is often simply uncertainty about what is wrong and confusion about what one can do about it. Again, the complex set of transits we are experiencing right now are testing us both individually and collectively and asking us to dig deep and find a way to ride out whatever it is that is happening. But this isn’t all that is setting up.
Mars in the Shadow
Mars will go retrograde on December 21, 2009 just as the Jupiter/Neptune conjunction ends. To me, this marks a real turning point that we will want to watch carefully. But it’s time to begin to look at where we are now with the Mars transit. The ‘shadow’ period is one in which the planet in question has entered the territory that it will go back and touch. In fact, from October 18, 2009 – May 18, 2010, Mars will remain in the territory between 0 – 19 degrees of Leo. That’s 7 months in a range of only 19 degrees. The area of our chart in this territory is where we will be focusing our attention the most. What it means is that we will be examining our strategies for moving forward in an intense, focused way. The examining will start when it goes retrograde on December 21st. So, the ‘shadow’ period that we are in now is somewhat weird to describe, because on one hand we should make an effort to move forward on anything that is presenting itself, but at the same time, starting something truly new right now will have to be re-examined within the next 4 months or so.
This is a complex period to write about since there are many contradictory forces at play and we must live our lives and move forward in the best way possible. There is no choice but to do that. So, it seems the best way to handle all this is to really see if we can intuit the invisible path that lays hidden before us and to stay present in the life we live now. That’s always a good idea, of course, but now, more than ever, in a situation where we will have to determine whether we need to act or wait, the only guidepost will be to be as self-aware as possible and feel our way through. In some cases we will see that we need to wait for more information while in other cases we will need to seize any opportunities that do show up.
I hope my readers will write about their experiences with the Saturn square Pluto transit that is upon us since we can learn a lot from each other. Individual birth charts are quite unique, of course, but we will all have to deal with the general theme of these archetypal forces. I look forward to hearing from you in the next week or so.