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Horoscope: The January Forecast
[01/25/2004] [Sage]

Happy Chinese New Year!! Happy Year of the Monkey!!

The new moon in Aquarius takes place January 21, 2004 at 3:05pm CST, at 01*10' Aquarius.

Writing a by-the-signs column takes an enormous amount of time and energy. This month I'm trying something new. The following is a reading of the New Moon chart that applies to all of us, no matter what sign the Sun was in at birth.

The following forecast includes far more astrological jargon than I normally use, but I've tried to explain the significance of each archetype as clearly as possible.

Gemini is rising in the east at the moment of this new moon. Thus, Gemini's ruler Mercury dominates the chart from its setting position in the 7th house. Mercury is directly opposed by Saturn retrograde rising in the 1st. Luckily, Mercury is free of further tense aspects, so the communication issues will be focused through Saturn and the inherent issues of the 1st-7th house axis.

This means there will be a lot of personality conflict, especially in the context of close friendships and intimate relationships. Questions of authority will arise, and egos may be bruised by Mercury's constant questioning of Saturn's motives. Saturn would much rather ordain without explanation, but even with Mercury transiting Saturn's home sign of Capricorn, Mercury has no patience with blind orders.

The counter-effect of this, though, may be just that: an all-out tendency to idealize an authority figure who wields a significant cult of personality. We may find ourselves singing the praises of this person, wholly ignoring their copious short-comings, even when we're the ones getting burned. It can be a painful situation, and dangerous to our emotional health as we denigrate our own needs in favor of this person whom we've placed on this pedestal. It's much safer to realize from the outset that they, like us, are merely human.

Authority issues are further complicated by Saturn's current orbital relationship with Pluto. The significance of the 165* aspect is obsessive compulsion, so our job is to apply that lens to the planets of Authority, Rules, and Hard Work on one hand, and Power, Radical Transformation, and Societal Undercurrents points. Clearly, it's a massive shake-up between maintaining the status quo and the urge to tear it down and rebuild it better. Expect this to overrun the political climate, but do not ignore the same issues affecting your personal life. What's true for the macrocosm is also true for the microcosm, so rather than fight change, help guide it constructively. That way it hurts less.

Pluto, being the force of radical transformation is just setting in this chart, meaning that its effect will be felt widely through the 7th house of relationships. A trine to Mars indicates a productive drive toward action, not to mention a heady boost to our collective sex drive. Conflict from Jupiter retrograde (presently ruling Pluto as it travels through Sagittarius) points to the danger of rushing in too quickly and making foolish mistakes. There's a particular struggle between home-life and love-life.

Uranus and Neptune are both peregrine, meaning they are without major aspects to other planets. When a planet is peregrine, it's like someone turned up its volume, so we have to keep that in mind when blending these archetypes together to understand the chart.

The Sun and Moon are conjunct in Aquarius in the 8th house, which is ruled by peregrine Uranus in the 9th. The 8th, as we know, is the purview of interpersonal finances, death, sexual exploration, the occult, and other things of a fairly intense nature. Aquarius and Uranus both indicate the archetype of the rebel-genius.

Because the Sun shines its light on all the nooks and crannies of each sign it passes through, this month may feel like we've flipped over a large rock with all kinds of unknown creatures wriggling around underneath. Except these particular creatures aren't mere curiosities; these are plotting to show us new, uncanny, and perhaps ingenious ways of approaching 8th house issues.

When I teach astrology basics, I present the 7th house as the house of relationship. This is where you fall in love, or make really close friends. The 8th is the next progression: this is where you get married, take out a mortgage, deal with inheritance and credit card debt, attend funerals, discover new facets of sex, explore the occult, and basically seek out all the dark, hidden parts of relationships. It doesn't actually matter whether you're in a relationship; if the energy is there, it will find a way to work itself out in your life.

So, again, with the Aquarian new moon conjunction occurring in the 8th, and without significant input from the other planets, it will be a banner month for thinking outside the box in terms of 8th house issues. Meanwhile peregrine Uranus takes up the same inquisitive banner in terms of higher education, philosophy, travel, and so forth.

As I said, in this chart, Neptune is also peregrine. Here, Neptune, the planet of Dreams, Glamour, and Addiction, rules the Pisces Midheaven, which is the seat of authority and career energy in the chart. Venus is transiting this point.

What this means is that our career energy is taking a highly aesthetic, creative, nebulous turn that defies the old boundaries of what was considered appropriate for work. That could mean that your boss wants you to take on added responsibilities that were not in your job description, especially pertaining to something creative-like writing a newsletter or decorating the office. Or it could mean that you find ways to branch out your work in ways that make people feel better. The key with Neptune and Pisces is the dissolution of boundaries. Just remember that the presence of this energy is not permission to go invading other people's space....even if you believe it's purely for their benefit. If you find yourself with an urge to martyr yourself to improve someone else's life, pull yourself back and do something creative for you.

Questions? Check out Sage's website.

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