Living In Interesting Times
Suzanne Wagner looks at politics, the economy and more for 2008.
by Suzanne Wagner
Astrologically speaking, 2008 holds the beginnings of a major change in consciousness with Pluto moving into Capricorn. But there’s a lot more going on in the cosmos that promises to make the coming year “interesting times”—perhaps a bit in the vein of the proverbial curse.
First, let’s look at the numerological significance of 2008.
To begin, add 2 + 0 + 0 + 8. You get a number 10. Ten is a major milestone for the massive changes the world wishes to accomplish this year. In the number system that I use, 10 indicates a year of power and radiance. So, no matter what, expect big changes and shifts in the coming year.
The number 10 is associated metaphorically with Alexander the Great. 2008 is going to be a year of expansion and power struggles as various economic groups vie for power, both negative and positive, in the world. As the world becomes more and more connected through computers and the Internet and global financial systems continue to mesh, big shifts that affect everyone can happen quite suddenly.
The number eight in 2008 shows the emotional process needed to accomplish this task. Unfortunately, the number eight is associated with grief and loss. Many will feel emotional despair and depression as certain patterns are exposed and need to be released in order to create positive change and movement. Some will experience moments of tremendous pain and suffering. This type of turmoil can emotionally affect us all. It can cause huge financial changes that do not seem positive at first, forcing us to reclaim our social and economic center and become more responsible for our country and strengthening the political issues arising at home.
We will begin to see that we need to become strong within like a yogi sitting on a mountaintop. We need to know ourselves first. Then, from that power and certainty, we can help others with our perspective and awareness. This new awareness will cause sweeping political changes as the people reclaim power and reprioritize government. Expect some heated political debates and a redistribution of power worldwide, changing how policies are dictated and how we are seen in the world.
A major shift of this nature would allow the feminine to rise, creating the distinct possibility that Hillary Clinton may win the presidency.
No matter what, the 10 will cause change in how we are seen and how others see our power influencing the world in 2008.
On a personal level, you should be honest with the intense emotions you may feel in 2008. Do not allow sadness to overwhelm you as the global situation creates upheaval. Find ways to express your true self powerfully in the world to create positive effects for your family and life. Keep your center and know that when you are present and clear, you can handle any situation that comes your way with honesty and love. Take some risks this year to change jobs or finally go for your dream.
The number 10 is like a big wave that you have been waiting for all your life as a surfer. You need to grab the moment when it happens and go for it. Otherwise the moment is lost and you do not know when it may come again.
January through March
Not surprisingly, between Pluto moving into Capricorn on January 27, Mars being retrograde until January 30, and Mercury going retrograde January 28 through February 19, things are going to feel bogged down in the mire and muck of the political and global situations. It may not feel like anything is actually moving until March.
Pluto moving into Capricorn catapults us into a new transformational cycle. Ultimately this is a good thing. Since Capricorn is an earth sign, it can take a while to make all the shifts manifest and ignite us into the new pattern. Pluto will be in Capricorn for 15 years until March 24, 2023!
Pluto in Capricorn catalyzes a new journey into consciousness. The United States was formed under a Pluto in Capricorn pattern. This aspect can cause revolutionary changes that bring about new structures and support humanity. In our time, the upcoming presidential election and politics will change and motivate us in new directions previously thought not possible.
You can see the pattern in the candidates now running for president: a woman Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton; Mike Huckabee, a Baptist minister; Mitt Romney, a Mormon; Rudy Giuliani, a divorced man, and Barack Obama, the first African American to be a serious presidential contender.
As Pluto traversed through Sagittarius for the last 12 years, the world marketplace opened up, but the darker side of the digital world also emerged with reduced privacy and the growing problem of sexual predators on the Web. The energy of Capricorn needs to create controlled structures pointing toward new rules for our new global family.
The Mars retrograde makes everything feel sticky and immobile until the end of January. Mars is a bucketload of energy, but when it is retrograde all the energy bogs down and gets trapped. Just as the Mars energy opens up again, we get hit with a Mercury retrograde that makes February feel stuck again until the end of the month. It will be March before the energy seems to move forward comfortably.
For approximately the next two years, Saturn is in Virgo. This planetary energy has always catapulted China’s systems and governments into transformation and movement, and the coming year is no exception. China hosts the Olympics on August 8, 2008 at 8:08 p.m. China sees the number eight as highly fortuitous, and they are going to make this their coming-out party. Expect huge things for the Olympics as China bursts onto the world stage with a new mixture of communism and capitalism. You will be witnessing a new power coming onto the world stage with a perspective different from the old Maoist way of thinking.
Saturn in Virgo is also highly beneficial to women in politics, so keep an eye on Hillary Clinton for this election. Saturn reorganizes work practices and industry. When Saturn has been in Virgo before there was a surge in quality control and consumer rights, creating more consistent approaches to manufacturing and production. We see those changes now in the “lead toy” problem from China and the attention to rogue viruses in schools and our food supplies. Victor Hugo said, “Habit is the nursery of errors.” This is not about doing the same old things but improving the pattern.
Housing prices and the stock market
Needless to say, the housing market is on a downward slide. Expect it to hit bottom in approximately August 2009 and to swing to another high point in March 2011.
Uranus, Pluto and Saturn will be moving through some complex interactions in a combination that has coincided with stock market crashes historically. Also, in 2009 Pluto and the North Node will conjoin in Capricorn. The combined effect of these astrological patterns bodes ill for the overall economy, of which the housing industry is a major part.
The “war on terror”
With all this astrological momentum for change, it is not surprising that we may finally be getting a step up on the so-called war on terror. The cause of this is actually the people who are finally sick of all the killing of innocents in the Middle East. There will be a shift in humanity’s temperament around all this craziness. As Pluto leaves Sagittarius, we move out of the chaos, disruption and drama associated with that sign.
Capricorn in Pluto will announce new rules of behavior and conduct that the world will begin to agree upon. Terror will lose its effectiveness.
Many Iraqis who left their country for exile in Syria have now run out of money and are being forced to return to their chaotic country. They must get their country back on line to prosper. People, finally tired of all the suffering, will make new peace negotiations begin to stick.
April through September
I expect a bad hurricane season in the Gulf Coast area, especially Alabama and parts of Florida. This will affect the economy of an already depressed area and force housing and building code changes over the next seven years that can help minimize destruction in these areas. Buildings, regardless of their age, will have to meet more stringent requirements to be insured. This will be highly beneficial over time, but in the short run very expensive.
A new and growing movement related to green housing projects will help the United States break free of dependency on Middle East oil over a period of about five years. The project will be launched by the next president inspiring all Americans to do their part to become more independent from foreign products, bringing money back into the U.S.
Renewed enthusiasm and energy will accompany the Presidential election campaign in 2008. Changes that will promote hospitality and global support are anticipated.
Financial situations are not going to feel great. The economy will be slower. People will be more cautious with money. But a little curbing of the credit cards never hurt anyone. We will feel the need to reprioritize and discover how much we really need, compared to what we think we need.
Jupiter going retrograde May 9, 2008, coupled with a Mercury retrograde May 26, creates a feeling of lack and things not completely going your way. You may feel contracted around money until September 9 when Jupiter finally goes direct. So play it safe; don’t overextend during that time. Expect miscommunications around money and try not to push your mate over finances during this period.
Mercury retrograde comes around again from September 24 through October 15, placing strains on the Internet and in all communication systems. The guides are telling me that we will have some solar flares at that time, compounding the already chaotic Mercury pattern. Satellites will misbehave, which may affect some of the Olympics programming from China. Some programs may have to be rebroadcast.
Pluto will move temporarily back into Sagittarius from June 15 through November 27. But the Pluto-Capricorn pattern will have begun a shift that cannot be stopped even though Pluto in Sagittarius might create a few last ditch chaotic events in the Middle East. I do not expect these to have a great global effect, as everyone is ready for the new pattern.
All in all, this will be a wonderfully transformational year with healthy shifts and changes beginning to make their way through the past chaos to form a new foundation of stability and balance. Expect a lot of work ahead but there is a newfound desire and drive to become more independent and self-reliant. Government will shift, and we will implement new patterns that can allow and spur growth into a new direction that benefits all.
We’ll revisit these predictions in December 2008 and see how we fared.
Suzanne Wagner is the author of numerous books and CDs on the tarot. She lives in Salt Lake City.