Around New Year’s I like to plan some yearly goals. This is less about resolve, more like focusing and clarifying my mind on what I’d like to accomplish in the coming year. This year, I’m going extra gentle on my “worldly ambitions” and instead going for the feelings I’d like to possess (vitality, serenity, peace, fulfillment) and mapping out how to get those. Like Janus, the Roman Saturn who stands at the threshold of new beginnings and new years (January), to have an effective plan, it helps to clearly evaluate where one’s been. The new year is as much a time of beginnings as reflection.
For me, 2012 was a year filled with lots of therapy, a need for more downtime, an upgrade in health routines, and a few uncharted changes in direction. I spent the first part of the year changing all those directions, and the latter part assimilating changes made. With Uranus transiting my Sixth House of health, work and routines, this area of my life took primary focus, but with pluck and a willingness to experiment, Uranus’ surprises got more enlivening, interesting and less insanely disruptive. Pluto transiting the Third House (of environment, communication, teaching, writing) put the kibosh on a teaching gig from 2012, a website redesign and also (eventually) told me that the time was not right for my next book to be published. While it was frustrating to put so much time and energy into something that wasn’t going to happen, there was nothing I could do about it (Pluto). For the record, I resisted all of this. Resistance, in fact, has been a theme for me vs. Uranus-Pluto Square.
Meanwhile, the progressed Moon continued gliding through my Twelfth House. This put a damper on the personal victories made, and really I’m happiest when I am at peace. The P. Moon in 12 is not horrible, per se, but I do feel I’m looking at the world from inside an aquarium and the external world – its ambitions, its solid things – feel just beyond reach. Unless one is a monastic, one cannot withdraw from life, but the felt sense that you’re just not sure if anything one does will have gravity or “stick”, is awesome. In a pictorial holiday collage akin to This Is Your Life orchestrated by my adoring husband over the holidays, it was hard to connect with “that woman” in those brilliant pictures. As solace, I trade Twelfth House aquarium stories with my astrologer friends and am always comforted by Steven Forrest’s ever honest, often harrowing proclamations, this time on the Twelfth House progressed moon: “…meditate, pray, relax, stare into candles and trust the process that is happening within you. Trust it for no other reason than that you have no other choice.”
Sure enough, the mutable houses (3,6,9,12) are not known as houses of action or great accomplishment, but they have the adaptability and flexibility required for the kinds of mental and physical health gymnastics one goes through during mutable house planetary transits.
In spite of 2012, I am optimistic. I look forward to 2013. Yet I bring the realism of 2012 with me, too. Who was it that said the best predictor of your future is your past? When I make predictions for clients who want to know what will happen I always ask about what has happened. Just as a Pluto transit is never really over, neither is the year that comes before this new one. We cannot expect new transits, or a new year, to wipe out old behaviours that require our diligent focus to change. And if we’re looking for help in charting an unknown future, the present moment holds the most marvelous clues.
I recall one particular client who was tied up in anxiety over a Uranus-Pluto transit to his Moon and wanted to know what terrible things would happen in 2013. Already, his dad had died, and a family member looked like they required his total care, and he was worried about his wife’s cancer recurring. I told him the future was already happening, right here and now. I suggested he focus on reducing his anxiety and self-care. How was he coping? He was under a lot of stress. What issues was it bringing up? The Uranus-Pluto square is kind of like motherhood: it reduces everything to the essentials.
In as much as we cannot control the future, there is something deeply reassuring in knowing the astrology of any given year. I recently read an article in which Marisa Tomei, when asked about the strange nature of her long career said she learned early on there would be fallow periods in her life, periods she wouldn’t fight but flow with; instead of dong films she’d do other things. Some of us have Marisa Tomei-like intuition, while yet others of us consult our astrology books & astrologers.
On that note, some advice from my health coaching cap: when you make your new year’s goals this month, try not to do it while amped up on a cup of coffee, inspired by adrenaline or mood chemicals. That’s like an amped up sextile aspect –creating tons of excitement at the beginning, but petering out when two signs don’t truly want to change their comfortable ways. It takes lucidity, realism to make those goals stick. And then sometimes your unfolding destiny has its own agenda and timetable.
Key Aspects for 2013
Here are some key aspects shaping the tone of the year ahead. I haven’t written descriptions for all, because its a lot of work (!) but I have highlighted: -Big Aspects. -Changes of planetary directions (retrograde, direct) are potent, precedent setting times, especially if these planets aspect your natal chart by transit. -Eclipses flavor the weeks surrounding, and amplify Big Aspects, changes of direction.
January, February, March 2013: Saturn in Scorpio sextile Pluto in Capricorn 10-11 degrees Scorpio/Capricorn (exact 1/6-1/15; 2/5-12, 2/24-3/24)
When Saturn, planet of fortitude, meets Pluto, planet of power, we can find the willpower and discipline to make things happen. If this pair aspects your chart, make the most of January-March by committing to your own transformation and doing what it takes to make it happen. Focus on your goal; eliminate distraction. It won’t be easy peasy – Pluto/Saturn never is – but change is possible for you.
The upside: They are in mutual reception, which grants a sense of cooperation and collaboration. Saturn supports Pluto’s aims and Pluto support’s Saturn’s. Super duper downside: Scorpio and Capricorn both seek control, and they are loathe to give it up as they are quite comfortable in a sextile aspect. If two people are on a board of directors and people are complaining, but they’re both getting what they want (control and power), why change anything? In the US, we can see this as “those in power intend to stay in power”– even to the point of going over the fiscal cliff.
1/30/13: Jupiter in Gemini D 6 degrees direct
2/18/13: Saturn in Scorpio RX 12 degrees retrograde
2/23/13: Mercury in Pisces RX 20 degrees retrograde
3/17/13: Mercury in Pisces D 6 degrees direct
3/20/13: Sun enters Aries (Vernal Equinox)
4/12/13: Pluto in Capricorn RX 12 degrees retrograde
4/25/13: Scorpio Full Moon Lunar Eclipse 5’46 degrees
May, 3 2013: Uranus in Aries square Pluto in Capricorn 11 degrees
The Uranus-Pluto saga continues. When Uranus, planet of radical reinvention, squares Pluto, planet of healing crisis, the urge to eliminate and reinvent is a force of nature. This larger than life energy emboldens radical life-changing events. What in your life is no longer working? Where do you feel stuck, stagnant, in need of rapid evolution? Prepare to face the music. If this pair aspects your chart, you’ll want to know the areas of your life being affected. Look to the house and planetary aspects.
Where Uranus in Aries transits, a need for newness, restlessness and sudden change arises in the soul. Where Pluto in Capricorn transits we need honesty, healing, and to be effective, accountable and strategic in the face of fated, difficult circumstances. On the upside: expect to move forward on this Monopoly board called Evolution. On the super duper downside: how this takes place is both stressful, and highly unpredictable. For instance, we’ve witnessed dictatorships fall, only to see new ones rise.
5/9/13: Taurus New Moon Solar Eclipse 19’31’ degrees conjunct Mercury & Mars
5/24/13: Sagittarius Full Moon Lunar Eclipse 4’8’ degrees square Neptune in Pisces
6/7/13: Neptune in Pisces RX 5 degrees retrograde
6/20/13: Sun enters Cancer (Solstice)
6/25/13: Jupiter enters Cancer
Oh, joy! Jupiter, planet of expansion & opportunity enters Cancer, the sign of fertility, creativity and nurturing, which is also its exaltation – which is exactly how it sounds. Jupiter loves Cancer, Cancer loves Jupiter. When Jupiter transits lovely Cancer, publishing, promotion, travel opportunity, opportunity for expansion should be more fruitful than it has been with Jupiter in the sign of its fall (Gemini). We’ll probably at least like our families (Cancer) again and since Jupiter is about to make beautiful music with fellow water planets (Saturn in Scorpio, Neptune in Pisces) in a lovely water trine (7/15/13), we begin to experience a renaissance of good feelings and healing.
6/26/13: Mercury in Cancer RX 23 degrees retrograde
7/7/13: Saturn in Scorpio D 5 degrees direct
7/15/13: Jupiter in Cancer, Saturn in Scorpio and Neptune in Pisces Grand Trine 5 degrees
All people born in early water signs will have their tummies tickled by this grand trine amongst the planets of expansion (Jupiter), structure (Saturn) and fantasy (Neptune). Water Signs: get those goals going during the first 3 months of the year — a grand trine is known to bring things, speedily, together.
7/17/13: Uranus in Aries RX 13 degrees retrograde
7/20/13: Mercury in Cancer D 13 degrees direct
9/20/13: Pluto in Capricorn D 9 degrees direct
9/22/13: Sun enters Libra (Equinox)
10/18/13: Aries Full Moon Lunar Eclipse 25’45 degrees
October 20, 2013: Uranus in Aries square Pluto in Capricorn 9 degrees
10/21/13: Mercury in Scorpio RX 18 degrees retrograde
All Mercury retrograde cycles will be in water signs this year. We’ll be working on re-establishing inner, emotional security. If emotional security sounds like an oxymoron, it is. These Mercury cycles will bring up our emotional subjectivity, and test our ability to be objective in communication.
11/3/13 Scorpio New Moon Solar Eclipse 11’16’ degrees near Saturn (14 Sco)
11/6/13: Jupiter in Cancer RX 21 degrees retrograde
11/10/13: Mercury in Scorpio D 10 degrees direct
11/13/13: Neptune in Pisces D 3 degrees direct
12/17/13: Uranus in Aries D 9 degrees direct
12/21/13: Sun enters Capricorn (Solstice); Venus in Capricorn RX 29 degrees retrograde