Jupiter enters Scorpio October 10th, beginning the planet’s 13-month tenure in the sign of the Scorpion. This ingress ends the series of Jupiter-Uranus oppositions which plagued 2017, and begins a new phase in the big planet’s journey, which will last until November 8th, 2018. In Scorpio, Jupiter blesses bold expeditions into the underworld, and teaches the methods by which the shadow-self might be claimed and integrated. Lessons also abound on living with fierce purpose, as well as the power of intimacy to heal.
As he crosses from Libra into Scorpio, Jupiter points his scepter at the ground. The stones respond, backing away from each other, opening to provide a point of entrance into the underworld. The faint echoed splash of subterranean rivers can be heard echoing up, and fainter still, the red hot bubbling of magmic flows.
This aperature is not merely an entrance. It is also an exit, a point of egress. It is a point of connection between the realm of the terrestrial and the chthonic, the living and the dead, the body and the soul.
It is an odd terrain for the happy planet, as Jupiter’s essential nature uplifts the earthly toward celestial heights in order to provide a lofty and holistic perspective. Jupiter is buoyant, distant and jolly by disposition, and thus there is a contrast with the quality of the reality tunnels which the Scorpion presides over. These paths crisscross the space under the surface, like a network of caves, or the spiderweb of veins and arteries beneath the skin.
There is wisdom to be found in these intimate reaches. The hidden channels, slick with blood and hot with libidinal vapors, conceal truths found no where else.
During this trip into and through the underworld, Jupiter takes on the appearance of Christ harrowing Hell or Brihispati descending to the underworld to teach the Daityas. On a human level, this is a teacher working in a prison, or a chaplain ministering in the midst of war. The intention is good, the help is needed, but the experience may change the helper in expected ways.
Mars and Jupiter
In Scorpio, Jupiter finds itself in a sign ruled by Mars. The relationship between these planets, the jolly priest and fierce warrior, is a mixed one. Jupiter is good-natured, philosophically and spiritually minded, and optimistic. Contrarily, Mars is harsh, hot-tempered, task-oriented and pragmatic. In schemes which plot out friendship and enmity between the planets, Mars and Jupiter are sometimes considered friendly, sometimes neutral and sometimes enemies.
If we take the figures commonly associated with the two planets, the priest-philosopher and the warrior, we can see how the warrior benefits from the priest’s wisdom and blessing, and the priest-philosopher benefits from the practicality and protection the warrior provides. Some combinations of these two principles are quite positive. One might look to the Shaolin temple, as well as other martial monasteries, where the introduction of warrior training made the monks capable of defending their home and maintaining their physical health long enough to practice in old age. Yet other collisions of the martial and the jovial, such as the religious sanctification of war, can be disastrous. While Jupiter seeks to uplift martial practice to the level of a Way, Mars threatens to turn Jupiter’s ideals into mere bludgeons — moral cudgels.
A Mandala of Paths and Teachers
Traditionally, it is primarily Jupiter which determines religious or spiritual bent in the chart. Jupiter’s position and condition speak to what wisdom a person is receptive to, and what quality of teachers they will encounter. Though this orientation is fixed, to some degree, by the natal chart, Jupiter’s 12 year tour of the skies sees the planet bless certain insights and practices as it roams, opening and closing certain pathways along the way.
In Scorpio, Jupiter points towards those spiritual methods which do not shy away from ego, sex, hunger, aggression, intimacy, and death. These are, for the most part, heretical methods, as it is precisely this list of topics which are seen as inimical to spirit in most orthodox religions.
Here we see practices such as manasati death meditations of Buddhism, the ritual contemplation of the many dismemberments and diseases which bring biological life to an end. So too is revealed the value of mediumship, ancestor work and other necromantic delights. Jupiter in Scorpio also spotlights methods of sexual magic and alchemy, which turn the vital and psychic power of the ecstatic act toward specific spiritual ends. Also featured are those pathways which involve a confrontation with the dark— the work of exorcists and psychoanalysts. Jupiter’s time in Scorpio smiles upon the alchemical transmutation of poisons, psychic and otherwise. Similarly blessed are martial paths, which forge the body and soul in the heat of ordeal.
You Can’t Handle The Truth
While some wisdom reveals itself gently, as a lover disrobes, other insights are less inviting, and it is these to which Jupiter in Scorpio orients us. Indeed, some truths reside within temples with gates guarded by terrifying monstrosities.
There are many truths about our world which are not comforting. If spiritual growth is not an escape from the world, but instead a process of coming to know it more thoroughly and intimately, than it is inevitable that we will learn things which at first terrify.
The primordial truth upon which we fear to gaze is the fact of biological death. Not only our own, but that of all we will ever know. Yet scores of saints and philosophers have gleaned their finest wisdom in knowledge and conversation with the skull, for death is a teacher without parallel.
Though the product of these dialogues is in many cases fruitful, the confrontation with mortality is fraught with fear, anger, and a host of other rejective sentiments. While these feelings exist as signposts along the way to wisdom, they are not wisdom themselves. Many mistake their fears for hidden truths, simply because they’ve stashed those fears away. Fears are a necessary component in the alchemical procedure by which the elixir of revelation is produced, but they are not the elixir itself.
In Scorpio, Jupiter asks us to look for wisdom in dark places. All stories have the potential to be a vehicle for wisdom, and horror stories are no exception. Jupiter in Scorpio thus points us toward the philosophical content of horror, and the horror content of philosophy. The intersection between these two spheres is explored deliciously in Eugene Thacker’s three part “Horror and Philosophy” series, which might serve as a suitable bible for Jupiter’s time in Scorpio.
When we look to horror for lessons, we find adversarial gurus, the villains and monsters our teachers. We encounter the dark genius of Dr. Hannibal Lector, and the immortal and amoral perspectives of Anne Rice’s vampires. Jupiter in Scorpio thus challenges our moral certainty by inviting us to debate with the devil.
Drink To The Dead
There is a river which flows through all creatures, and it is composed of blood. That river stretches back from every creature now living to the first organisms ever to grace this planet. Its current connects all lifeforms, living and dead, in a great delta of streams.
Jupiter in Scorpio blesses work which reaches beyond the veil to honor the dead. When we honor and acknowledge the departed it creates a doorway which opens in both directions, a point of intersection which allows for exchange between the present and the past. Yet it is important, in honoring the dead, not to be consumed by them. There is more to you than the sum of your ancestry, just as there is more to the future than the past. Failure to navigate this current wisely can result in possession by family complexes and over-identification with genetic ancestory.
While Jupiter is in Scorpio, growth and enlightenment are obtained through the process of ordeal. The wisdom-seeker must encounter and incorporate the portions of the soul which are ugly, stupid, violent, and indulgent.
This process is described extensively in Jungian circles as the encounter with the shadow, the sum of the qualities barred from conscious identification. Although archetypally imagined as a villainous evil twin mwahahaing their way from heinous deed to heinous deed, the actual composition of the shadow is always relative to the structure of the conscious identity. The hard have a soft shadow, the cruel have a kind shadow, the sensuous have a chaste Shadow. The shadow, once fully encountered, always contains elements of vulnerability.
Jupiter in Scorpio pushes for confrontation and audience with this abhorred reflection. There is power and joy trapped in the figure of the shadow. They do what we won’t. They feel what we refuse to. They delight in what we forbid ourselves. Yet they are also weak where we most wish to be strong. The shadow is thus both attractive and repulsive, a combination of power we’re afraid to seize and vulnerability we can’t acknowledge.
Growth comes about through dialogue between the identity and the shadow. This conversation is fraught with confusion and potentially, danger. It is an underworld journey in its own right, full of triumphs, terrors and empowerments.
The ingress of Jupiter in Scorpio opens the door to an underground cellar full of ledgers, upon which is written all that you have given and all that you’ve received. Also noted is what you expected to receive, and what others expected you to give. Over the coming year, look over these books with more wisdom than you had when you made the exchanges recorded.
Jupiter’s time in Scorpio will also offer you a fuller understanding of death, and the dead which stand behind you. Look to the secret exchanges not only between yourself and others, but the flow of power from life to death and back again.
While the big planet makes it way through Scorpio, Jupiter will be your guide to navigating the dance of shadows within relationships — the obscure selves revealed by intimacy and retreat. If you can accept both embrace and rejection by your teachers, you will find yourself loving more wisely than ever before.
During his tenure in Scorpio, Jupiter intends not to offer you riches, but instead the cure for poverty. Though both lead to financial gain, it is the difference between generating a positive and removing a negative. Look to ongoing expenses, and consider how you might reduce your overhead.
The same opportunities for enrichment also apply to your physical health. Reduce what taxes your vitality and you will find your vigor noticeably improved.
For the next year, Jupiter will guide you into the depths of your own creativity, leading you to subterranean springs of mystery and joy. Not only will Jupiter help you remember what you have to offer, it will also increase confidence in your creations.
In addition to boosting confidence and creativity, Jupiter’s time in Scorpio also signals a general abundance of good times, and a luckier year than the one just passed.
During the time that Jupiter is in Scorpio, the big planet will entice you to explore familial history, as well as the relationship between people and place. If you pay attention, you’ll develop a deeper understanding of what “home” really means.
Jupiter in Scorpio also plans to offer you opportunities to heal family wounds. The nature of the cure, though, is not for the faint of heart, for it involves journeying deep into the landscape of the hurt. Resolution will not be found at a distance, but at a most intimate range.
While within Scorpio, Jupiter will be most interested in improving your daily and weekly flow. The big planet is due to point out the little frictions which mark your calendar, as well as how you might smooth them out.
For the year that Jupiter is in Scorpio, look for little blessings along the way, between your house and the grocery store, lying just off the path. Pay more attention to the space between your various destinations— there are small treasures to be found in that oft-ignored territory.
Jupiter’s time in Scorpio has much to teach you about the ebb and flow of finances, as well as what, exactly, makes something, or someone, valuable. It is a place of good financial luck for you, though it is important not to take for granted, nor take credit for, a temporary blessing.
In Scorpio, Jupiter has plans to affirm, embolden and expand you. Not only that, but for the time that Jupiter is in your sign, you will swaddled in a blanket of luck and protection. Challenge yourself to be more optimistic, even if it is uncomfortable. The ability to imagine negative outcomes and to guard against them is an important ability, and one that the Scorpion’s children often possess, but the capacity to envision the positive and to open oneself to serendipity is equally potent.
In Scorpio, Jupiter will lead you deeper into the labyrinth of your own psyche. You’ll find your devils there, waiting for you. Some may need to escorted firmly back to their respective cells, while others may provide tempting and potentially lucrative offers. Engaging with depth psychology will yield great results, as will practicing the art of dreaming.
The year that Jupiter spends in Scorpio will entail opportunities to expand your social sphere, as well as a tour of the occluded psychodynamics of friendship and enmity. Open yourself up to new connections, and you may find yourself with powerful new allies and benefactors. Also, consider what you have to offer as a mentor and benefactor yourself.
While Jupiter is Scorpio, the planet plans to encourage your professional ambition and pinpoint opportunities to get ahead. Furthermore, Jupiter will illuminate the secret rivers which flow to and from power, and teach you how to navigate their waters.
Jupiter’s time in Scorpio will bless the time you spend learning, but especially your studies of philosophical, spiritual and magical topics. The big planet plans to strengthen and refine your sense of purpose. Purpose is an invisible but powerful thing. It turns exhaustion into vigor, and the impossible into the real. When you move with purpose, you move as a river does, carrying much along with you.