Deep currents of emotional intensity drive these final days of an already too intense year. You, someone you love, a person you just met, or strangers on the train, bus, or plane are certain to have moments when the littlest thing suddenly turns into a gigantic brouhaha, replete with finger-pointing blame, bruised egos, and vows never to love and/or trust again. Even those with barnacle encrusted emotional bodies, whose hearts are under lock and key are bound to have strong responses to something they would normally be oblivious to.
There’s no escaping the power of the planets this week and next, unless, of course, you hibernate or self-medicate to the point of numbness—and those remedies aren’t likely to work for very long. I know…you think I am exaggerating. And I wish I were. But the celestial crescendo of 2013 has overtones that resonate for the next several months. Pay attention: What gets set in motion could stay in motion for a very long time. So even if you have to pretend to be polite, treat all your fellow travelers with respect. While you may not feel jolly, ’tis still the season of goodwill toward all sentient beings, regardless of race, religion, gender, age, social strata, or moody disposition.
Mars is the agitator-in-chief. Currently in Libra, the Sign of relationships, Mars is activating the ongoing Uranus/Pluto square, which has been a persistent source of upheaval, individual and collective, for the last year and a half. Uranus is in Aries, the Sign of the individual. Pluto is in Capricorn, the Sign of government. The ongoing Uranus/Pluto square is fundamentally about transformation, particularly stagnant systems that override basic human needs. From a political perspective, the power of this square can be witnessed through the many extreme global challenges we are facing, challenges that highlight what needs to change as well as the resistance to that process. (More about that next week, as we enter 2014.)
All three planets—Mars, Uranus, and Pluto signify energy. Mars represents physical energy; Uranus and Pluto both symbolize nuclear energy; and the combination of all three planets indicates the potential for tremendous force. Unfortunately, they are not aligned in a positive relationship, and trying to harness the superhuman strength of their fractious interaction takes superhuman strength.
This week and next, most of us are likely to experience the presence of Mars most keenly through personal relationships, and it makes no difference what your relationship status might be. Everyone has Libra somewhere in the birth chart, which means each of us has a sector of the chart that is devoted to relating—to each other, to ourselves, as well as to the planet we are a part of and depend on for sustenance. Mars is activating that sector and will continue to activate that center until the end of July. No one is exempt from this process, even those who are committed to being noncommittal. Notice where you are caught in stagnant roles that inhibit true growth; these are the relationships that are likely to light up with intensity, especially today, as the Moon joins Mars, and adds an even keener emotional component, and through the New Year festivities, when expectations are high and disappointment is higher.
For many of us—dare I say most of us—relationships are hard; they are where we meet the consequences of our early conditioning, which in many cases is loaded with a million moments of misunderstanding, confusion, loneliness, and for some of us, abuse—physical, psychological, emotional, and spiritual. For many reasons—too many to delineate here—this is the season when those wounds rise to the surface of daily life, turning celebrations and festivities into the season of dysfunction. Mars is likely to spark long-standing grudges and complaints, and all sorts of personal ghosts of Christmas past. Rather than succumb to those old stagnant patterns with anger or melancholy, allow Mars to ignite your determination to grow. Use the superhuman power of this planetary moment to transform by refusing to engage in harmful behavior to anyone, including you. And as always, remember to help your fellow travelers. Kindness and compassion are the greatest gifts we can give to each other this or any time of the year.
If you know your Ascendant and/or your Moon Sign, read that, too.
Aries March 21-April 19
It feels personal—and it probably is—but if you can rise above the petty particulars, you’ll find an entirely new attitude that will allow you to assess the situation objectively.
Taurus April 20-May 20
It is all a matter of attitude, especially your inner, silent response. Yes…you can manage the external postures, but it will take enormous effort to corral your internal dialogue so that your mind can finally have the rest it needs.
Gemini May 21-June 21
Rather than polarize with friends, or careen into an existential dilemma about the nature of relationships, delve into your creativity. Whether it’s writing, painting, singing, or cooking, channel the intensity into a positive framework.
Cancer June 22-July 22
Mars is disturbing your nest, and there’s not a Cancer on planet Earth that likes having an unsettled home—yet that’s the situation. So take as many deep breaths as possible, practice as much patience as you can muster, and make your mantra: “This too shall pass.”
Leo July 23-August 22
It’s okay to speak strong words—actually, you won’t be able to hold back—so rather than waste your energy resisting this Martian force, before you hold forth, make a determined effort to stand in the humility of your own sensitivity.
Virgo August 23-September 22
It looks like a money issue, acts like a money issue, and talks like a money issue, but at the core, this Martian disturbance is all about measuring your true value—an assessment that cannot be made with dollars and cents.
Libra September 23-October 22
It’s been a non-stop relationship intensive for several years, and, even if you’re growing weary of this process, it persists. Take a deep breath, and as you exhale, contemplate how you can take a stand for yourself without overriding what’s best for others.
Scorpio October 23-November 21
Read Taurus, your counterpart above, and add this: An untrammeled mind has the potential to squander its gifts. Rather than allowing your mind to chew on old angry themes, apply the power of your imagination to healing old wounds.
Sagittarius November 22-December 21
Even if you have to bite your tongue until it bleeds, avoid confrontations that have the potential to morph into battlefields of values and ideologies. Yes, it’s important to stand by your principles, but only when the other person is actually listening.
Capricorn December 22-January 19
There’s no sense trying to hold back what you most desire, so rather than stifling your goals, pursue them. Just be clear that some of your ambitions are sure irritate others. Anticipating those skirmishes will help you to navigate the rough spots with greater skill.
Aquarius January 20-February 18
You could call it a crisis of faith, but only if you’re resistant to the process of reexamining your belief systems—spiritual, political, and philosophic. I would embrace this process if only because Mars has the power to sweep away ideas you may have outgrown.
Pisces February 19-March 20
You’re in a profound process of transformation that includes an unsettling examination of what matters most to you and how those values stand up to the values of others. Don’t expect a quick fix or a spiritual bypass. Simply allow this process to grow you.