The context for the New Moon in Capricorn, on January 12 at 9:00 p.m. on the West Coast, is the harsh square forming between outer planets Saturn and Uranus. It is the major transit of 2021.
The January 12 New Moon (on the East Coast of the US, this Full Moon occurs at 12:00 am, January 13) will be conjoined with powerhouse Pluto, which has been in Capricorn since 2008. This lunation will occur at just about the same degree as last year’s January 12 conjunction between Saturn and Pluto, which was the major transit that formed the backdrop to the 2020 year of hardship.
You may have had a chance to watch the sky in the days leading up to the December 21, 2020 Solstice, when Jupiter and Saturn had just moved out of Capricorn and into the sign of Aquarius, and then united in what looked like a single majestic star. Jupiter and Saturn meet about every 20 years. This meeting marked the onset of a new 200-year cycle for their meetings in air signs. This Great Conjunction brought a respite, a bit of fresh air, following the oppressiveness of 2020.
But as soon as beneficent Jupiter and task-master Saturn entered Aquarius, they started moving toward a square with outer planet Uranus, which has been in the earth sign Taurus since 2019.
A square aspect between planets in the sky is like two planes of reality facing off in a 90-degree angle. They are in each other’s way as irreconcilable forces. And yet, whether we have a square in our own natal chart, or when there’s a square in the sky affecting the whole collective by transit, that which is irreconcilable must be reconciled. How and to what extent they reconcile remain open questions.
At this New Moon, conjoined with Pluto on January 12/13, we may find ourselves revisiting some of the feelings we’ve been soaking in all this past year. There has been death, loss, the restructuring of relationships and the details of our daily lives – all of these hard things have taken a toll. And, we don’t know what’s coming next.
Saturn represents structures and the status quo. Uranus, like a lightning bolt, wants to tear it all down. Saturn is the past, Uranus is the future. Saturn is stability and control, prepared to try to contain the uncontrollable.
Historically, a Saturn-Uranus square has correlated with times of tumult. Both planets are in fixed signs now, entrenched, not likely to budge. Saturn and Uranus have squared off during some horrendous world events: for example, the Reign of Terror in 18th century France, and the so-called “cultural revolution” of 1960s communist China.
Change for its own sake does not necessarily mean good. Even if we can see an event coming, it may still shock the system.
The Saturn-Uranus square will be exact three times this year: February 17, June 15, and December 24. Because these are slow-moving planets, we will be under this transit all year.
A week ago, January 6, storm troopers violently attacked the U.S. Capitol. As they did so, Mars, the planet of aggression, was in its final and most potent degree of Aries, the Warrior. Within hours of the siege, Mars entered the sign of Taurus, as if to throw fire on the square between Uranus in Taurus and Saturn in Aquarius.
Mars is now moving toward an exact and potentially volatile conjunction with Uranus on January 20, 2021, the day of the U.S. presidential inauguration.
We do not know what will happen.
Astrology does not pre-ordain events. To the extent that astrology “works” – and it is phenomenally reliable – it is by processes of synchronicity. What is in the sky manifests below in human affairs. This is always within broad parameters, with many possible iterations, with room for human agency and choice.
The coming conjunction of Mars and Uranus may coincide with something wildly unpredictable, maybe, one hopes, some sort of a beneficial break-through. Who knows?
What’s best is to be aware of potentials, to not predict precise events, and to pray for best possible manifestations of any planetary transit.
What might anyone do when tensions are strained to the max?
Each lunation, and really the beginning of any cycle between the luminaries and planets in the sky, is an opportunity to give oneself a course correction.
At the New Moon, we look to the house where the Sun and Moon will lie in our own natal chart. This shows us the areas of life to focus on. We look to the sign of the New Moon and the aspects it makes to other bodies.
And, so, we have a Capricorn New Moon conjoined with Pluto.
In astrology, Pluto often gets a bad rap as being about underworldly things, the dark side, the sinister, the secret and manipulative. It is all that, and it is also about power, just plain power, which is neutral. Think of a hammer: it can be used to build or to destroy. Pluto’s like that.
Capricorn is a cardinal, initiatory sign. It wants to start things and to build something that will endure. In traditional astrology, Capricorn is associated with the archetype of the Father. Gender aside, it is parental. It wants to guard and protect.
What is it that each of us wants to start and to build and to protect? Can we make something real and enduring, even in the face of difficulties?
That’s what’s being asked of us under the 2021 Saturn-Uranus square and at the January 12/13 New Moon.
New Moon blessings,
P.S. I’m always available for consultations about your natal chart and current and upcoming transits.