As we wind our way toward the end of 2020, we will have a New Moon at 23 Scorpio on Sunday, November 14 at 9:07 p.m. on the West Coast.
At each monthly union of the Sun and the Moon, we look at the sign the two luminaries meet in. That gives us a flavor for the coming month. Each sign is in one of the four elements (earth, water, fire or air) and one of the three operating modes (initiatory, changeable or fixed). Four elements, times three modalities, gives us the 12 zodiacal signs.
Scorpio is the fixed water sign. It’s not water as in a rushing river or an endless ocean. It is more like the water of a deep lagoon, dark and maybe murky. What creatures lie down there at the bottom of the lagoon? The Scorpionic imperative is to get to the bottom of things. That might mean breaking a taboo or discovering a secret. The paradox with Scorpio is that, in modern astrology especially, Scorpio is associated with transformation. Yet Scorpio is fixed, relatively averse to change. Pondering that contradiction, and as someone with Scorpio prominent at the bottom angle of my chart, I think that a common Scorpionic pattern is to hold on to people and situations for a very long time, and then, once the full depth of a matter is revealed, to find oneself changed and, finally, to let go.
Scorpio is traditionally ruled by the planet Mars, the planetary force of action and desire. Transiting Mars currently remains in its fiery sign of Aries, where it has been in its retrograde period from September 9 to November 13. It is just starting to move forward. Each New Moon and for the couple of days afterward, it is an excellent time to write down what we’d like to realize in the coming month.
With Mercury also now in Scorpio, we can set our minds to an investigative approach. With Mercury moving toward an opposition with Uranus, we may find ourselves surprised, maybe even shocked, with new information and some new ideas. Such insights won’t be anything superficial. Scorpio doesn’t like small talk.
This New Moon is in an encouraging, 60-degree sextile with Jupiter, planet of magnification and beneficence. All this year, Jupiter has been part of the Capricorn cluster, along with Saturn and Pluto, with Jupiter just now separating from an exact conjunction with Pluto. No astrological placement is bad, per se. Yet the heavy concentration of Capricornian energy has correlated with 2020 having been severe for most all of us, and devastating for many.
One of the totems of Scorpio is the Phoenix that rises from the ashes; thus, the idea that Scorpio represents transformation. Toward the end of this hard year, 2020, who is not ready for something along the lines of detoxification and renewal?
By the end of the month, on November 30, we’ll have a Full Moon that will be a partial lunar eclipse, with the Sun having entered the wintry fire sign of Sagittarius and the Moon in its opposite airy sign of Gemini. This will lighten things up, at least a bit. Duality and curiosity are the hallmarks of Gemini, which can be witty and fun, giving us a breather from the heaviness we’ve been under.
We are coming, now, to the end of a cycle between Jupiter and Saturn. Before modern technology gave us the discovery of the outer planets—Uranus, Neptune, Pluto and beyond—Jupiter and Saturn were known as the outermost reaches of the universe. They are also known as the social planets. Everyone born within about a year has Jupiter in the same sign, and everyone born within about a 2.5 to three-year period has the same Saturn sign.
Jupiter, with its 11.86-year orbit around the Sun, and Saturn with its 29.5-year orbit, meet in a conjunction nearly every 20 years. Their meeting, called the Great Conjunction, signals the onset of a new era, and these onsets have often correlated with wholesale changes in society and politics. Saturn and Jupiter are fondly called the Great Chronocrators, meaning “markers of time.”
For 200-year swaths of time, Jupiter and Saturn meet in signs of the same element, with a quick dip into a new element for one cycle toward the end of 200 years, followed by a return to the element they’ve been in, before they move on to a new element for another 200 years or so.
Since 1802, Jupiter and Saturn have been meeting in earth signs. This era has seen global emphases on the accumulation of material wealth, unequally distributed, and with the exploitation of the Earth itself.
What might come now as we enter a new period of time, with Jupiter and Saturn set to meet in air signs for the next 200 years? Our upcoming Great Conjunction will occur at 0 degrees of Aquarius on December 21, 2020, the same day that the Sun will move to 0 degrees of Capricorn at the Solstice point.
This will be a powerful moment in and of itself, though what may happen in the coming epoch will not be clear right away. We can only imagine.
Aquarius, the fixed air sign, is associated with qualities of intellectualism, rationality, and egalitarianism. We notice, during this pandemic, how we rely increasingly on the air waves of the Internet. As with all things, there are upsides and downsides. I’m being simplistic and general here, but greater surveillance via the Internet may be on the horizon, as may be increasing uses of technology to lighten our human burden on the earth. We notice, for example that businesses have turned now to on-line meeting spaces, rather than having all their employees traveling constantly by car and plane.
For many people, the structure of work itself is undergoing change. And, with the shift from earth to air for the next 200 years’ worth of Great Conjunctions between Jupiter and Saturn, societies might find themselves moving somewhat away from materialism, and toward a greater love of knowledge and ideas. One can only hope.
Blessings for the New Moon in Scorpio,
P.S. I’m always available for consultations about your natal chart and current and upcoming transits.