At the full Moon on 2nd September, the Sun is in Virgo and the Moon is in the opposite sign of Pisces. There are many interpretations of this full Moon. Pisces is associated with kindness and compassion while Virgo, an earth element sign, relates to service. Simply being kind and compassionate to other people is a form of service. Both Virgo and Pisces are mutable signs and both are, in their individual ways, linked with soul lessons of wisdom. At the full Moon, we may choose to withdraw from the business of our outer lives for a short while in order to contact the wisdom that lies deep within us and to find inner peace. The Pisces-Virgo axis can also be thought of as linking spirituality and earth.
During the first three days of September, the Sun in Virgo is trine Uranus in Taurus. The Sun signifies the creative life force of spirit and Uranus is sometimes called the truth- and light-bringer. As both of these heavenly bodies are in earth signs, we can use this time consciously to bring more truth and light into our everyday lives. As the earth element relates to service, we can serve life in its many forms on Earth by radiating light and love to the world.
At this time, Venus in Cancer is opposite the Pluto-Saturn conjunction in Capricorn. This emphasises the pull between affections in the home environment and the control or power of authority. Some people’s feelings are closely linked with their financial position and this may have been drastically altered by world events. It can be beneficial to do what we can to maintain inner calm and be patient with loved ones. Venus and the Pluto-Saturn conjunction are square to Mars forming a configuration called a T square. This creates tension but the resolution of this T square is to be found in the qualities of Libra, the sign of balance, impartiality, understanding and fairness. Consciously seeking these qualities can go a long way to ease tension and create harmony.
Jupiter, Pluto and Saturn have been in Capricorn for much of this year and will remain there until well into December. The last time these three planets were in this sign was over seven hundred years ago. This planetary configuration is associated not only with major and deep changes in the structures and organisations of society but also within ourselves. We are currently living through a period when humanity is making profound changes at all levels. People are becoming more aware of the problems associated with a strong emphasis on materialism and power. By examining and modifying our own approach to life, if we deem that necessary, we are contributing to the changes that are going on throughout the world. These changes are leading towards a way of life that is more conscious of the needs of others, of animals, planets and the environment.
Wherever Mars is in a horoscope is where there is courage, drive and an input of energy. Over the last few weeks Mars in Aries has been square to Jupiter, Saturn and Pluto, all retrograde in Capricorn, adding to the incentive to make the most of the current opportunities for profound changes in society, particularly in governments, large organisations and companies. On 10th September, Mars begins its retrograde phase, which will last until the second week of November. This is a time when, as individuals and collectively, we can re-evaluate how we use our energy. By reconsidering the motivation behind our actions, we can ensure that they are in line with the core of our being, our higher self, rather than selfish desires of the personality. By being patient and taking time to consider new ideas, we are more likely to remain calm and better able to take the right action at the right time.
Jupiter has been retrograde in Capricorn since May. During the intervening time, we have had the opportunity to look more deeply at our own integrity and sense of justice. By 14th September, Jupiter will be moving direct again so the wisdom we have garnered during the retrograde phase can be actively used in service.
While Saturn and Pluto are still retrograde, we can continue to look deeply within ourselves to establish what we as individuals want to change. In the next few weeks, both of these planets will go direct and we will then be able to start making the changes we have been considering. These changes will be paralleled by changes on a wider scale including nationally and globally. Humanity is evolving at a rate that we have not seen during our lifetimes. This rate of evolution is challenging but everyone alive today is part of this profound transformation. In their own individual and diverse ways, all are contributing towards a better future for the human species and for all life on Earth. This is part of the eternal spiral of life ever moving towards the perfection of the Creator.
Keep well, stay happy.
One of the techniques used by astrologers interested in the wider repercussions of planetary influence is to study the charts of, for example, new and full moons and, more importantly, the charts for the solstices and equinoxes, which mark the entry of the Sun into the four cardinal signs (Aries, Cancer, Libra and Capricorn). It is important to note that the orientation of these charts varies according to where you are, but the planetary positions in the signs of the zodiac are the same in all versions of any one of these charts regardless of geography.
This technique has proved instructive with respect to the progress of the coronavirus pandemic. The map for London (as our capital city) for the March equinox this year, just three days before lockdown, had the Saturn-Pluto conjunction [in Capricorn] rising. You may be fed up with hearing about these two planets, but they do indicate very graphically what actually happened: the sheer pressure of this massive conjunction has such an air of inevitability about it. It also illustrates the restrictions to which we have all been subject – and the fact that life will almost certainly never be the same again.
However, little has been said about the fact that Mars and Jupiter were also rising in that map. Even though Pluto was the planet right on the horizon, Mars and Jupiter were close by. Mars particularly has proved helpful as the situation has developed; while both planets are somewhat restricted by the strength of Saturn-Pluto, they show that courage and a degree of optimism can help us to endure the privations imposed upon us.
Jupiter became more apparent in the June solstice map as, appropriately for that planet, efforts were being made to ease the lockdown conditions. The September equinox map indicates further changes. The problems haven’t gone away, but it indicates progress in the ‘fight’ against them – Mars is very strong in this chart, even though it is retrograde. The retrogradation is linked with the nature of what we are fighting to overcome, trying to put right past mistakes or errors of judgment that have been impeding recovery.
When the December solstice comes, only a few hours before the Jupiter-Saturn conjunction I wrote about recently on this page, in a very real sense a new cycle begins, along with a determination to look forward, not back, however testing life may be. We need to remember that the ‘stars’ reflect the conditions we are dealing with, but the opportunity to learn from those conditions and act accordingly rests firmly with us, however much we may sometimes feel otherwise!
Simon Bentley writes: 'Much has been made in the astrological press of the significance of the heavy grouping of planets in Capricorn in relation to the current world situation. More has probably been said and written about Pluto, in particular, than ever before. While it is undoubtedly true that Pluto, both through its position in Capricorn and its links with other planets, signifies the present situation very well, very little (as yet) has been said or written about another planetary feature which will largely signify the way in which we move forward from it.
Only a few hours after the December solstice this year, Jupiter and Saturn form an exact conjunction. While this may not sound like a ‘big deal’, time and study have shown that these conjunctions, which occur roughly every twenty years, always play a considerable part in the direction taken by global affairs – not necessarily so much in actual events, but in the underlying general trend of history.
For mathematical and astronomical reasons, for long periods of time these conjunctions fall in signs of the same element, which changes only about once in every two hundred years. Until forty years ago there was a long series of conjunctions in earth; after a brief excursion into air at the end of 1980 there was another one in earth twenty years ago. From this new conjunction onwards, air will prevail for the next couple of centuries or so, and this particular conjunction falls at the very beginning of Aquarius.
It is hardly necessary to point out the symbolism here: the beginning of a new age of sorts, whether or not you think it’s the beginning of the new age. Whatever our own individual opinions about this, it is a very different thing from the massive Saturn-Pluto conjunction which has weighed heavily on us this year. It won’t be easy, but it indicates beautifully the way in which we shall approach the move forward out of the crisis. It will take a long time, certainly – Saturn’s influence there – but Jupiter is at heart optimistic and forward-looking. The conjunction is good for resilience, which we all need, but also for forward planning. With the conjunction at the beginning of Aquarius, we have an opportunity to make forward planning enlightened by new age principles. This applies to us as individuals as much as to nations and the world as a whole. Of course, some will not take the opportunity and some will take it more willingly than others, but in the long term it should be very helpful.'
Simon Bentley writes:
This piece is an editorial I wrote in the February 2008 issue of the White Eagle School of Astrology’s magazine ALTAIR. It is interesting to re-read it under current, different circumstances…
It is human nature to ask ourselves what a new year will bring; humanity in general has been doing that for millennia. I suspect that this year even more questions than usual are being asked. As astrologers, we are naturally expected to have the answers – but, as we also know, it’s not always that simple. However, the heavens do seem to be saying that there is a more than subtle change of emphasis now taking place. The most obvious symbol of this is Pluto’s change of sign. By the time you read this it will just have moved into Capricorn, after thirteen years in Sagittarius; not only that, but it will have been preceded a month earlier by Jupiter, also moving from Sagittarius into Capricorn. This shift of two heavy planets from fire to earth is bound to be noticed and in fact the first signs of the likely effects of Pluto’s passage through Capricorn appeared last year, most notably in the crisis affecting certain financial institutions. Institutions in general, especially those that are large and apparently well-established, as in government and finance, are considered generally to come under Capricorn, whatever their individual charts may be (and these are not always known). We can expect some of the mighty to fall during the seventeeen years that Pluto will spend in this sign, and as it has already begun, 2008, despite a temporary dip back into Sagittarius in the summer and autumn, will almost certainly see some crises of this nature.
What seems to be happening is a general loss of certainty which, of course, makes people anxious and worried. Many are bound to be affected directly or indirectly, but behind all this is something much more positive. We are told to ‘lay up our treasure’ not on earth, but in heaven, so that problems with earthly treasure and indeed earthly authority may well be there to direct our attention inward, to heavenly treasure and the authority of God. Capricorn may be an earth sign but at its highest is the sign of the priest, the one who has a thorough understanding of worldly life and its problems but who brings a spiritual viewpoint to them. Many lament the rampant materialism and selfishness which they perceive in many areas of life. Even though that perception may be somewhat judgmental, it looks as though Pluto in Capricorn will lend us a powerful helping hand in changing things, by force if we don’t go along with it willingly, as is Pluto’s wont.
A quick look back at history is also instructive. Pluto last entered Capricorn in 1762. The ensuing seventeen-year period saw many upheavals, but most of all the one across the Atlantic where America was preparing to rid itself of its colonial masters. The USA national horoscope indeed has Pluto still in Capricorn, although near the end of the sign, and in the second house, so it is likely to be in the forefront of any major changes concerning financial institutions that arise from the coming passage of Pluto through that sign. Our own 1066 national horoscope and the UK 1801 map both have Sun in Capricorn, so we in the UK shall notice it too. Let’s make sure we look forward positively, knowing that much good will come of what is bound to be a period of upheaval and uncertainty.
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