With the Sun’s entrance into Aquarius and its first decan, we step beyond the confines of Castle Capricorn. Having examined the architecture of our lives since the early days of the calendar year, it has come time to proceed past those walls.
As we enter the first decan of Aquarius, we leave the protective bounds of our castles-under-construction. With our Capricorn resolutions and blueprints either firmly underway or left by the wayside, we move on to experience the world anew, the world-this-year, which is by definition the unknown.
This decan is traditionally ruled by Venus, for there are treasures just across the boundaries of our lives and egos. Perhaps more so than any other precious thing, this place holds the joy of discovery. Thinking of this frontier space and the jewels it conceals, I am moved to think of Jung, whom I’ve been recently re-reading.
At the beginning of Aion, Jung lays out his basic theory of Self. In this framework, the Self is a vast field in which the conscious personality floats. Outside of this point of known, conscious light, there are concentric rings of obscurity. The mysterious world outside reveals itself through encounter, challenging, affirming and changing the conscious personality. Yet Jung rightly points out that the inner world does the same. There is a periphery inside, and on the other side there is much to discover. Just like the outer world, upon inspection that that inner terrain is revealed to have seemingly always been there, waiting for us. Encounters with this unknown but pre-existent Self are just as thrilling and off-putting as our discovery of new parts of the external world.
Astrology is not psychology, however it does include psychology. Astrology speaks to our encounters with both the internal Self and the external World. Thus the first decan of Aquarius represents our initial foray into the unknown, both within and without. It is at this point that discoveries are made, and the unknown begins its transformation and translation into the known. It is, of course, a delightful “coincidence” that Jung had this very decan of Aquarius rising.
We have the option to explore these new horizons as brave explorers, or as unhappy exiles. Though what we encounter is not likely to change, what we learn from and make of it most certainly will.
Mercury Conjunct Pluto
While the Sun and Venus spend this decan’s span of days sending postcards from the frontier, Mercury and Pluto call us back to Castle Capricorn for an emergency meeting. Something strange has been unearthed whilst digging foundations, though whether it is an ancient tomb, a cursed relic, or some rather suspicious bones, is yet unclear. Mercury conjoins Pluto at 19 Capricorn on January 24th. Though this conjunction is modified somewhat by Mercury’s almost simultaneous sextile with Jupiter in Scorpio, the conjunction takes precedence.
The Mercury-Pluto conjunction offers the opportunity for deep contemplations, though some may find themselves lost in the subterranean tunnels which open up. Mercury-Pluto aspects have an obsessive, drilling quality that can be quite useful if properly directed. Hidden riches and old skeletons may well turn up, though not all that is buried is treasure. Some of the insights unearthed by this conjunction will be toxic, and require considerable processing before they can be handled safely. Fortunately, Jupiter in Scorpio has a strong aspect to the Mercury-Pluto conjunction, and will do its best to offer guidance to those within the tunnels, and alchemical advice for those who strike a motherlode of radioactive material.
Though Mercury’s conjunction with Pluto takes place on the 24th, and will be most active then, it will nonetheless be a meaningful influence for the entirety of this decan’s span of days.
Mars in Sagittarius: Missiles and Bullhorns
The other event of note during this decan is Mars’ exit from Scorpio. Mars has been in Scorpio since December 9th, fueling contention, releasing plagues and inspiring determination. Mars is at peak strength in the Scorpion’s nest, and so its movement into Sagittarius turns down the intensity for a bit.
In Sagittarius, Mars is louder but less deadly than in Scorpio. Though Mars’ actual potency is reduced in Sagittarius, the shift nonetheless forecasts quite a bit of boisterous noise. In Sagittarius, Mars likes to argue about ideals and considers a moral crusade a fine vacation. Nonetheless, in the Archer’s sign, Mars blesses speed, range and fervor. Mars’ time in Sagittarius also spotlights and strengthens the connection between enthusiasm and accomplishment.
Mars will crusade through Sagittarius until March 17th, at which time he will join Saturn in Capricorn.
Upcoming Eclipse: I See A Blood Moon Risin’
The Sun’s traversal of the first decan of Aquarius carries us through an encounter with the unknown within and without, with plans to drop us off at the doorstep of January 31st’s dramatic total Lunar Eclipse in Leo. There is thus a crimson mirror waiting for us at month’s end, ready to reflect back to us Self in all its uncomfortable entirety. Stay tuned, as the next decanic installment will deal thoroughly with the Lunar Eclipse, as well as the strange visions due to swarm its surface.
During this decan, the Sun and Venus ask you to look upon your network of friendships with fresh eyes, while Mercury and Pluto have an intense discussion about your professional situation. Jupiter suggests that some work related problems may be alleviated by means of accepting a little more help, or joining forces with an ally.
Mars’ entrance into Sagittarius begins a 6-week period where it will be easier to find the motivation to pursue longer range goals and spiritual work. Yet you may find it all the easier to argue with people about their beliefs.
The Sun and Venus travel the first decan of Aquarius together, offering you a new perspective on your professional situation. Meanwhile, Mercury and Pluto convene to discuss both where you are headed and why, bringing up questions about long-term goals. Jupiter points to the people in your life, suggesting that someone might be holding an answer for you.
Mars’ entrance into Sagittarius on the 26th shifts the red planet’s attentions to your exchanges with people. Keep an eye on agreements with others so that they don’t get scorched. Also, double check to make sure you’re pulling your own weight before you become incensed that someone else isn’t. Such unpleasantness is often accidentally co-created.
The Sun and Venus stroll through the first decan of Aquarius together, pointing out, along the way, some features of your path which you may have previously missed. Meanwhile, Mercury and Pluto get together to examine the status of your exchanges with people. They bring up old debts and inequalities, in hopes that you can balance these accounts. Jupiter comments on the situation, pointing out how hard work might be the answer to some of the issues raised.
The ingress of Mars into Sagittarius on the 26th directs the planet’s crimson light toward relationships and relating. Latent conflicts may catch fire during this time, and you may well find yourself having overdue fights. You might also need to jump in and help someone in trouble. A little hero-ing can be good for the soul, especially if you don’t expect a reward.
The Sun and Venus stroll the first decan of Aquarius during these days, highlighting the help you get from others and hopefully inspiring gratitude. Meanwhile, Mercury, Jupiter and Pluto meet to discuss the status of your relationships, and the deep structure through which you relate.
Mars’ ingress into Sagittarius on the 26th points the planet’s fire at your to-do list, which you may see expand significantly. Yet this transit also delivers the motivation to see it all done. If you do end up running hot and hard during this period, remember to take breaks and do a little maintenance on yourself.
This span of days sees the Sun and Venus inspect the first decan of Aquarius, and there reveal delights in partners and those around you which you may have previously failed to note. Meanwhile, Mercury, Jupiter and Pluto plan a palaver to talk about your to-do list, as well as that New Year’s resolution to live a healthier life.
Mars ingresses into Sagittarius on the 26th. During Mars’ time in Sagittarius, it is important that you keep your energies focused on achieving long-term goals, as it will be all-too-easy to get distracted by pleasure-seeking or embroiled in useless conflicts.
The Sun and Venus both point toward what you may have left off your to-do list, while Mercury and Pluto meet to consider how you’re spending your creative energy, and if, perhaps you might be pouring some of it down the drain. Better scheduling may be what you need in order to avoid wasting that portion of yourself.
Mars’ entrance into Sagittarius on the 26th points the red planet at your living situation and familial connections. That energy can be usefully direct toward home improvement projects or exerting effort on behalf of family members. You may also find your clan more annoying than usual. If there’s a real reason to get into to, then do it, but if not then look for other ways to blow off steam.
The Sun and Venus work together to reveal opportunities for creative work, as well as previously unrecognized blocks to your generative flow. Meanwhile, Mercury and Pluto meet to discuss old family issues, as well as more concrete matters of physical location.
Mars enters Sagittarius on the 26th, where it will, for the next 7-weeks, speed up your weekly schedule and social life. Meanwhile, it may exaggerate friction with siblings, or with silbling-like relationships. Point yourself toward light and swift accomplishment.
During this decan, the Sun and Venus will work to reveal things about both your location and your familial relationships which you’ve previously missed. Meanwhile, Mercury and Pluto convene to discuss what you’ve been doing with your time, and how you might better adapt your schedule to your goals.
Mars’ movement into Sagittarius on the 26th shifts the red planet’s attentions toward your finances. You’ll likely be simultaneously motivated to work hard for the money and tempted to burn through it. Needless to say, burning money is rarely a good idea.
The Sun and Venus point toward the unexplored corners of your stomping grounds, and provide insight into the way you use your time during this decan’s span of days. Meanwhile, Mercury and Pluto meet to discuss your finances, in particular the manner in which fundamental psychological needs and drives have influenced your relationship to money.
Mars moves into your sign on the 26th, initiating a 7-week period where you will be the apple of the red planet’s eye. The blessing of extra motivation and energy will be balance by increased irritability and restlessness. Take care to point that thing in the right direction.
The Sun and Venus in Aquarius point toward financial factors you may have previously missed, perhaps revealing a small opportunity you might otherwise pass by. Meanwhile, Mercury and Pluto get together to discuss with you the person you’ve become. Pluto pushes you to be more honest about that history, internal and external, and Mercury requests that you take these facts into account as you think forward.
Mars enters Sagittarius on the 26th. This begins a 7-week period which moves the red planet’s influence into hidden places. You may find your motivation and energy levels unsteadier than usual — overabundant at one moment, conspicuously missing at another. Mars’ fire will heat your subconscious, causing some complicated feelings to rise to the surface. Take care to process this material before acting it out.
The Sun and Venus spend their time wishing happy birthday to the first lot of Aquarii during this decan, lighting candles and gift wrapping frontier-gear for the happy exiles born to the first decan of Aquarius. Though in a somewhat less celebratory manner, the Sun and Venus still have gifts of insight and affirmation for the rest of the Water-Bearers. So do Mercury and Pluto, though the material they present for inspection may be considerably less comforting. Make a little time to process what gets dredged up.
The entrance of Mars into Sagittarius on the 26th shift’s the planet’s red gaze to your friends and the communities to which you belong. During the ensuing 7-weeks, you’ll likely find yourself more motivated to be social and to express yourself, yet more willing to court conflict. Keep an eye on which fights you pick.
The Sun and Venus spend this decan wandering through your subconscious, shining their lights on easily ignored thoughts. Meanwhile, Mercury and Pluto are eager to conduct a therapy session with you about the role you play within communities, and how you comport yourself socially.
Mars’ entrance into Sagittarius on the 26th turns up the temperature on your professional life. The red planet’s time in the Archer’s sign offers a mixture of ambition and irritation. Mars stokes the desire to achieve, yet also piles plates high. If you do find yourself running to keep up, remember to pause for the occasional breather.