Wishing you all a Happy New Year!
The long-awaited Saturn-Pluto meeting in Capricorn happens in January – although we’ve been feeling this aspect building for at least a year. In a sense, the actual conjunction of these two heavy-hitting planets is likely to be felt as something of a relief, a release of tensions that we’ve been experiencing in the collective for a long time.
Saturn and Pluto form a long thirty-six year cycle, as Saturn acts as the minute hand to Pluto’s slower pace. The last time they met, in 1982, they were in Libra. Saturn has circled the zodiac and made progress on his second go-round, while Pluto has only moved four signs since their last meeting. The Saturn-Pluto cycle is about the structure of our society – its institutions and government – and in Capricorn the pace and depth of change are both very intense. In some readings of this cycle, the effect tends to be one of liberation from bondage, while others take a more neutral stance about its effects.
The last meeting of Saturn and Pluto in Libra seems to have correlated with a shift towards the conservative and traditional and away from the more progressive zeitgeist of the 1960s and 1970s. It would be surprising if their conjunction in the equally reserved sign of Capricorn (it’s Saturn’s home sign, after all) were to indicate a shift in the other direction. However, it’s worth noting that the last decade has seen some significant challenges to the more traditional viewpoint, for example in marriage equality and cannabis legalization – changes that would have been hard to imagine even during the relatively open 1990s.
Although the beginning of 2020 features a kind of peak intensity, don’t expect to be wowed by stunning changes. We’ve been experiencing the effects of Saturn-Pluto for some time, and it’s a very long, deep, and slow process. There’s certainly a shift that takes place as we begin the year, but its manifestations will take some time.
The first week of the month is active. We’re between the solar eclipse on December 26th and the lunar eclipse on January 10th, while approaching some very hot aspects. While there are a few indications that we’ll hit release points (especially in personal relationships), we’re most likely to swing between optimism and a sense of foreboding.
As we get to the period between January 10th and 13th, a cavalcade of explosive aspects hits. At the full moon eclipse on the 10th, Uranus (the planet associated with sudden changes and revolutions) stations to go direct. Saturn meets Pluto, and although this aspect is seeding a long cycle, both the Sun and Mercury step in to join the full moon and Uranus to ‘trigger’ some action. Watch what happens around this time, in both your personal life and the collective. The changes at the collective level are sure to reverberate for some time.
The strategy for mid-month is to maintain your composure, as far as possible. If you are entirely sure about doing something, go ahead, but if in doubt, wait. Avoid reacting (and overreacting) to people and situations. No doubt there will be challenges to keeping your cool, and it’s not a good idea to keep things ‘bottled up’ anyway, but many people will be operating on a hair trigger around this time. And keep in mind, too, that although you may be composed, others can still fly off the handle.
The second half of January has a more even feel to it, although Mercury’s square to Uranus on the 18th could spark some hot debates and impulsive action, while the Sun’s square to Uranus on the 25th could represent another trigger point. There’s a good chance that these aspects will help us to ‘see clearly’ what’s going on in our lives, and to make innovations as needed.
The new moon in Aquarius on January 24th also has the ability to give us a breath of fresh air and consider new possibilities. Some of the heaviness of the past few months breaks, like clouds parting to reveal a blue sky. How long the sky remains clear is an open question, but the relief we experience in the latter half of January is likely to feel welcome.
As the month ends, Venus, Mars, and Neptune tangle with each other, potentially getting things moving in our personal and romantic lives. The Mars/Neptune square on the 27th could send some folks off on a bit of a rant, as this aspect has a very quixotic flavor – especially with Mars in belief-based Sagittarius.