The next several days are a whirlwind of astral activity—the planets are busy with important work and the rest of us are preparing holiday celebrations, sending out glad tidings, or happily donning our bah-humbug seasonal suit. Even if you’re up to your limit of things that must get done, it would still be wise to find the time to mark the winter solstice on Thursday, December 21 at 4:28 PM, GMT. The solstice is the matrix for all our seasonal festivals of light. It promises the eventual arrival of spring and reminds us that darkness has a limit and that the light will eventually return—a knowing that comforts the winter-weary soul. And since this has been a year, not just a winter, of discontent, celebrating the return of the light could strengthen hope for the future. From Menorahs to Christmas trees to pagan goddess dances around the fire, all these seasonal festivities are love-fests for life’s renewal and continuation.
Of course, this year we need hope more than ever. Mr. Trump and his Gang of Hungry Ghosts have let loose their appetites for power, tilting the axis of the Earth, and have sent most of us reeling from the ensuing threat of extinction. I’ve refrained these last several weeks from writing about their egregious behavior toward their fellow humans and other inhabitants of Planet Earth because like many, I’ve grown weary of immersing myself in their toxicity. But now at the close of this year, their effect and their ongoing threat cannot be ignored.
Saturn enters Capricorn today, December 20, at 4:49 PM, GMT, just prior to the winter solstice tomorrow. Saturn’s entry into its Home Sign signals a serious and sober approach to the next several years. It will be in Capricorn until March 2020, and during these next couple of years it will insist on a reckoning, and whether that accounting takes the form of a pointing finger of blame or a sincere desire to take personal responsibility is up to each of us. It’s far too easy to point a finger at someone else—another’s flaws are often obvious. But what we forget is that when there’s a charge on someone else’s behavior we ourselves are usually wrestling—consciously or unconsciously—with a similar issue. The hatred and fear of this Gang of Hungry Ghosts and their leader is a manifestation of our collectively denied disconnection from each other. The good news is that their blatant behavior is so blatant that it’s waking a huge desire to transform those themes.
The final Mercury Retrograde of the year ends on Saturday, December 23 at 1:51 AM GMT—in the United States Mercury Direct begins on December 22. Mercury Direct begins just in time for last minute shoppers, but don’t forget that for the first few days it’s retrograde or direct, the retrograde wobbles are still in effect—and for some those disturbances last even longer.
Uranus goes direct on January 2, 2018 and its preparation for “forward” motion is certain to disrupt regular routines between Christmas and the New Year. When Uranus “changes direction,” technology tends to express that turnaround through any number of ‘issues,’ so try to be patient when hooking up those new gadgets—or even getting the old ones working properly. Uranus has a strong astral signature and its forward motion marches it right into a new cycle that begins on May 18, 2018, when it moves into Taurus. I will be writing much more about Uranus’ journey through Taurus over the coming weeks and months. But for the next couple of weeks, its forward motion means two things: (1) Because Uranus symbolizes startling plot twists, we’re in for even more of those surprises as it closes one cycle and opens another. (2) As Uranus moves forward, it revisits the degrees it transited in 2017, so be prepared for more than a few déjà vu experiences as we clean up a lot of details from 2017. And there are a lot of details to take care of, individual as well as collective.
It would be very easy to believe that the chaotic behavior of Mr. Trump is just the disconnected behavior of a narcissist lost in his own glory. But that would be a naïve position, given just how much he has dismantled the American government and thrown it into a state of chaos. The State Department, for example, has lost most of its senior staff, which means there’s no one with enough experience to decipher certain situations should there be a crisis—and this is true in almost every department. Don’t be fooled: Hidden behind the sweeping Republican generalization that government is too big and bloated, the Gang of Hungry Ghosts and their leader have been setting the stage for confusion and anxiety. What’s more, roiling the waters of racism, classism and sexism, they have exacerbated polarized positions, making it even more difficult for their opposition to organize. This is not accidental. This is a plan—for what isn’t sure, but it is not haphazard.
With all the societal and cultural darkness that’s occurring, it’s easy to get lost in a permanent winter of fear, frozen and paralyzed in hatred, anger, greed, blame, or any of the other self-righteous positions meant to protect, defend, and insure survival. We are essentially divided between those who care for their fellow travelers and all the other beings that inhabit our shared planet, and those that don’t. Those that don’t…well… let’s just say their hearts are cold. And when hearts resemble ice sculptures, it takes more than a faint ray of light to start the necessary melt.
But here’s the thing: That thaw is still possible if we are willing to open our hearts to ourselves. If we can figure out how to stop calling Mr. Trump names and stop categorizing all his followers as stupid, and instead listen closely to what’s being said—dropping down beneath the parts that don’t make sense and hearing how hurt those frozen hearts are, we will find a way to make it through. Listening at this level is just one of the ways to heal the great divide, and those who know how to hear through their hearts understand the value—it lets the light in. Listen compassionately this week to your fellow travelers, and allow kindness to illuminate your vision of what could be.
Sun Bursts: If you know your Ascendant and/or your Moon Sign, read that too.
Aries March 21-April 19
Your solstice gift is a new perspective, one that can turn stagnant situations on their heads and then use that shake-up to catalyze a new plan. Only one bit of advice: Rather than make impulsive decisions, let this new point of view germinate for a while. There’s no need to hurry this process, and taking your time might be part of the new paradigm.
Taurus April 20-May 20
There’s no need to worry about what Uranus in your Sign is going to mean—it’s the planet of surprise, which means there’s absolutely no telling how it will manifest. But one thing is for sure: You’re going to have more than a few opportunities to shift areas in your life that have become stagnant. And while you may feel anxious at the thought of things changing, you just might find you’re actually excited about the possibilities.
Gemini May 21-June 21
Your innate curiosity has your head spinning about how the New Year is going to unfold. And while there are situations that are uncertain, you have two solstice gifts to help you handle any situation that arises. (1) Your charisma is at an all-time high and you’re recognized for your talent. (2) You have the ability to see the cosmic joke and not take things so seriously that you forget to laugh.
Cancer June 22-July 22
It’s important to still your mind and calm it down so you can carefully listen to your heart—it has important information to convey, and if you’re only focused on the noise, you won’t hear it. So do whatever it is you do to find enough quiet time to sit and pay attention to your inner health. You won’t miss anything—and you could gain everything.
Leo July 23-August 22
Your solstice gift is the ability to focus your determination and aim it at accomplishing your goals. A word of caution, my passionate friend: Before you harness that chariot and set out on your adventure, make sure you’ve prioritized what you want to achieve. You have a lot of power available to you, and if you can learn to harness it, you can achieve almost anything.
Virgo August 23-September 22
Yes…there have been a lot of shifts to cope with, but you’ve managed to handle the changes with skill and grace. Now it’s time to take a deep breath and contemplate how you want to integrate all that you’ve learned about the process of transformation. Use your innate appreciation of detail to distill and refine the wisdom you’ve been gathering—you’ll be surprised by what’s there.
Libra September 23-October 22
Your solstice gift is a renewed sense of balance, within and without. I know balance is always something you crave, but it isn’t always easy for you to find and maintain. So rather than push this opportunity aside, embrace it—there are key elements in this next phase that can help you stabilize at a much deeper level, with more than a few positive results.
Scorpio October 23-November 21
It’s time to contemplate the true value of partnerships, personal and professional, as well as your relationship with yourself, so even if you feel you have it all figured out, stay open to the possibility of learning even more. Yes, interactions can be difficult, especially if some of them are confrontational (and what relationship isn’t at least once in a while?). But if you can see confrontation as a pathway to greater awareness, you’re certain to attract people of like mind.
Sagittarius November 22-December 21
Your solstice gift is an increased awareness of how the pieces of your personal puzzle fit together. I know that might sound a little obscure, but you are finishing up one phase and preparing for another, and a greater understanding of your personal patterns would contribute to your ultimate success. Delve into the details and embrace all the angles before you take the next steps.
Capricorn December 22-January 19
Before you take on the next project, make time to contemplate what it feels like to be thrust into a leadership position—because that’s exactly how Saturn’s transit in your Sign is going to manifest. You’ll either be seen as the expert or you’ll see yourself as an expert. Here’s some advice: Be prudent and cautious about committing yourself either way. The best news about Saturn is that it also symbolizes the process of growth.
Aquarius January 20-February 18
Your solstice gift is courage, specifically the courage to look deep within to examine the causal level of your distress. You may know intellectually that childhood imprints determine the course of our adult life, especially our emotional reactions. But you may not know how to tackle changing those patterns. Bravery is the first requirement of transformation—and it’s yours.
Pisces February 19-March 20
There’s no need to procrastinate—you have as much time as you need. But even as I write this I realize that your world is moving faster than it usually does, so let me include that there is also no need to hurry. Find a comfortable personal pace—one that allows you to dally when you need to—and let your internal rhythms match your external ones, creating a deep sense of alignment.
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