Over the course of a year, the solstices and equinoxes of the Sun mark out the changing seasons, which affect not only the beginning of different natural cycles, but our moods and choice of activities; whilst on a smaller scale, the Moon’s phases make up the time-span of a month. In fact, the etymology of the word month, comes from the Indo-European word, ‘me(n)ses’, meaning “moon.” 1
During this period, the Moon also moves through the zodiac, with every progressive full or new moon cycle occurring in the sign more or less following that of the previous month.
If you are thinking of making some New Year’s resolutions, then 2014 should be a particularly good year in which to do so, thanks to a potent New Moon in Capricorn on January the 1st. Set to take place at 11h14 GMT (06h14 UTC/13h14 SAST), this serious but very ambitious in Super Moon is likely to motivate you to make your mark on the world stage, or at the very least, within your immediate social circle over the next year or so. Thanks to the involvement of Pluto and Mercury, any intentions or plans to improve or expand your current career or public status will carry added weight, so be sure to consider carefully what you’d like to achieve in the days prior to this powerful lunar event and then write down or affirm these clearly and articulately on the day in question, preferably at the exact time of the New Moon, or during the hour of the Moon (which you can easily work out using your astrology software or planetary hour calculator). Choosing to consider the wider ramifications of your goals and using any worldly influence at your disposal to create win-win situations, rather than ruthlessly advance your own position, will see you succeed on a rather grand scale. Any attempts at social reform, especially through the written or spoken word, or relating to education, are likely to be especially powerful now and over the coming year.
Expect matters concerning childhood, family, household or property issues, food, shipping or sea travel to come to a head on or around January the 16th. Waxing to full at 04h52 GMT (06h52 SAST/23h52 EST on 15 Jan). This is a good time to round off discussions or plans concerning catering, possibly for a family event such as a birthday or wedding; or finalise household grocery budgets, maternity plans, and domestic property transactions or alterations. Visiting relatives, especially female ones, may well return home now, and the emphasis on family that was so strong over the Christmas holiday period will slowly begin to dissipate of its own accord. This is a great time to sell family heirlooms, seaside properties, food or items relating to home decor. It is also a good time to get more in tune with your bodily rhythms and emotions, which often provide early clues to stresses and cycle shifts long before you become aware of them consciously. Doing more to nurture yourself and reinforce your own and loved ones’ sense of security is also likely to be a major theme, as will women’s issues and matters related to motherhood, pregnancy and birth.
The end of January 2014 will be marked by a second New Moon, this time in Aquarius, at around 21h38 GMT (16h38 EST/23h28 SAST). Unlike the previous New Moon, which was all about success and status in the traditional sense, this New Moon is all about less materialistic and more individualised conceptions of personal achievement, emotional authenticity and freedom of self-expression. Over the next month or so, any new ventures or social initiatives that have these values at their core are likely to gain traction. Getting involved with democratic movements or social enterprises is also likely to feel particularly satisfying on an emotional level. If you are keen to get in shape, then taking a novel or personalised approach to diet and exercise is likely to yield surprisingly positive results. The truth is that even though we all share the same biology, we are all made up of all different combinations of blood group, inherited genes and environments that make our bodies anything but one-size-fits-all when it comes to health and wellbeing. This is also a great time to start a new science or IT project, or form a new group or society, especially one that has humanitarian aims.
This year, the Sun will ingress into Aquarius on January the 20th at 03h51 GMT. This marks the beginning of a month-long period during which there is likely to be an emphasis on events or ventures relating to democratic movements, human rights, science and technology. Funding or support for technological research, as well as campaigns aimed at improving gay rights or promoting the acceptance of fringe groups within society, are also likely to be prominent now. Political leaders may issue statements or make changes to their policies with regards to the monitoring and policing of online behavior, as well as reforms to same-sex marriage etc. On an individual level, this is a great time to introduce ways to express yourself more authentically, join a group of like-minded people or take action when it comes to promoting unusual art-forms, past-times or activities.
Mercury into Aquarius: 11 January 2014
Mercury leaves conservative Capricorn and ingresses into quirky, open-minded Aquarius on January the 11th marking a 20-day period during which cultural tolerance, scientific intellectual pursuits and online forms of communication are strongly favoured, as are commercial, writing or research projects relating to IT, science or technology. Don’t be surprised if you feel inclined to communicate in a more honest, unpretentious or original way during this transit, or if your interest is piqued by some out of the ordinary, mathematical or esoteric pursuits. Fresh perspectives and blue sky thinking could lead to innovations and breakthroughs in the energy sector. Futuristic forms of transport such as electric cars, are also likely to be emphasised now. Don’t feel rushed into making your plans public until you’re ready, though – when Mercury retrogrades back into Aquarius next month, you’ll get a chance to fine-tune your work and make any revisions that may be required before it is ready for public consumption.
Mercury into Pisces: 31 January 2014
In much the same vein as December, fast-moving Mercury will change signs twice this month. After spending just under three weeks in eccentric Aquarius, the planet of commerce, communication and travel will ingress into sensitive and sympathetic Pisces on the 31st of January. For the next 10 days or so, expect to want to inject more emotion and feeling into your communications, and to be more inclined to listen closely to what people are saying in order to get what they are really saying. In fact, from an intellectual perspective, you are likely to be drawn to subtlety and complexity now – both creatively and psychologically, it will be the inflections and undertones, rather than the actual substance of what people write or say that will interest you at this time. Spirituality, ethics, and other touchy-feely subjects, including the right to life or to end one’s life, are also likely to be prevalent in the media, both during the first weeks of February and again in March when Mercury resumes forward motion. Creative self-expression, especially through the medium of film or photography is another way in which Mercury may choose to manifest during this transit.
After the excess of food, family love-ins, and economic optimism that followed on from December’s Jupiter-Saturn trine, January’s first week will see a conflagration of planets in pragmatic Capricorn move in to introduce some balance and perspective to Jupiter in Cancer’s confidence and perhaps premature generosity. This Capricorn stellium, which includes both the luminaries, as well as Mercury, a retrograde Venus and Pluto, is likely to inject, possibly rather forcefully via a domineering male figure or know-it-all expert, a large dose of realism, which could well upset the applecart, particularly between the 1st and 5th.
Cancer and Capricorn are the same set of signs implicated during the Great Depression of the 1920’s, when Pluto was transiting through Cancer, decimating family life and removing all prospect of financial recovery or employment aspirations for many people. It is also very apt now, as Pluto, planet of power and survival, makes its way through the polar opposite sign of Capricorn, from where it forcefully opposes Jupiter’s upbeat passage through Cancer.
The trick during this challenging period is to strike a balance between unrealistic optimism and unrelenting pessimism. People need hope in order to keep going and sometimes naysayers are not actually seeing things as they really are, but are coming from a position of fear, especially of the unknown. The way to negotiate this challenging time will be to tap into your good judgement and gut instinct to establish where your responsibilities lie and what is good sense and practical advice, as opposed to doubt, gloom and cynicism or even envy and controlling behaviour.
During January, the worst two days in this particular phase of the Cancer-Capricorn struggle, are likely to be the 3rd and the 5th when first Mercury and then the Sun oppose Jupiter. On the 3rd, the Sun will also square Mars, which may indicate the possibility of arguments and relationship strife, political unrest, as well as the rather stressful combination of pressure and indecision. If you don’t know what to do for the best, try to delay making any choices until the 6th at the earliest when Saturn will weigh in, offering some important background information, incisive advice or penetrating insight into the situation that may well change your perspective somewhat.
However, with Mars also due to square Jupiter from Libra on the 8th, you won’t be completely out of the woods yet – avoid taking any risks, acting out at work or being too impulsive now because at month’s end, Pluto and Jupiter are due to clash heads, making it unlikely that the matter will be quickly resolved and raising the possibility that your actions or words could come back to bite you in a big way if you are not careful. In fact, relations with certain individuals, especially parents and authority figures, is likely to remain rocky, with further clashes and tense exchanges possible on the 16th and 25th.
Still, on the 11th, when the Sun and Venus sextile Saturn, reinforcements are likely to arrive possibly in the form of support, help or advice from a long-lost relative or childhood friend, so all is not lost.
With the outer planets involved, it is most likely that much of this drama will play out on the world stage, especially with regards to the state of the global economy. Although there are tentative signs of recovery from some quarters (Jupiter), many experts are still reluctant to proclaim the UK or the US financial systems on the upturn until this newfound optimism and growth begins to filter through to families and small businesses (Saturn/Capricorn) in the form of salary rises and real-term full-time job creation.
The moral of the story: remain circumspect for now and avoid taking any big risks until the situation stabilises and the prospect of a triple dip recession is well and truly no longer an option. Rather like a new-born baby, economic recovery is still a delicate and vulnerable thing that needs protecting and nurturing. That said, from an astrological point of view, it does also require some brave investors to be prepared to take small gambles with their money if the economic ball is to get rolling again, and for ordinary folk to feel hopeful enough not to give up striving to improve their situations, or eschew spending altogether. Clearly, we need both the optimism of Jupiter and the caution of Saturn in order to succeed.
Despite all the strife, there are also likely to be a few surprises along the way, care of Uranus, especially on the 17th and 29th – both good days to take a chance and act on your intuition. Technology could also play a role in providing innovative solutions to difficult problems at this time.
Venus will also station on the 31st, which should see relationships regain some of their sparkle, and the ghosts of the past once more recede into the background.
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