Having got through the rather tense aspects that accompanied the holiday season – and weathered the storms that have been raging around the North Atlantic – things are set to calm down a little as we move into 2014. But when I say ‘a little’ that’s exactly what I mean. There is still that tense cardinal cross in the skies kicking the energy of the cardinal square into action and although it is loosening a little it is by no means finished with. Plus over the coming days we have some other significant aspects forming which also play into this energy in various ways.
The first major aspect to consider is the Sun’s opposition to a retrograde Jupiter on the 5th January. The point at which the Sun opposes a retrograde planet is significant as it marks a change in the way the energy of the retrograde planet is expressed and experienced. Up until this time Jupiter has been going back over things, revisiting issues, with the opposition from the Sun comes some greater clarity and sense of understanding about what needs to be done to align these issues that have been revisited into a more constructive and helpful pattern for the future. With Jupiter in Cancer and the Sun in Capricorn these issues in some way concern the balance between family and working life and how to get a balance that reflects our beliefs and is supported by the communities we live in. In many ways we will start to put more energy into achieving that balance as we realise where we have been blocked by previous arrangements and the frustrated energy shown by Jupiter’s backwards motion is ignited by the opposition from the Sun and gains a sense of direction.
Erin Sullivan in her book ‘Retrograde Planets’ says of the Sun opposition to Jupiter Rx:
The removal, loss or submersion of energy in the initial half of the cycle resurges with highly charged intensity and is often explosive. This is especially relevant to wanting or desiring something intensely. The retrograde movement emphasizes what we do not have, and we come face to face with all the hopes and dreams that may have been suppressed during the first half, now released in inflated, overdramatic display which cathartically clears the air. Once the circumstances have settled somewhat, this purge allows gradual assimilation of the true situation and consequently gradual revision of plans
This potentially explosive quality is exacerbated by the energy of the cardinal square at this time. However there is also a kite shape in the skies at the moment and this can actually bring the lift needed to achieve great insight, inspiration and momentum to move forwards creatively. It is significant that the Moon is instrumental in forming this kite shape as the Moon rules Jupiter’s retrograde motion so there is potential here to use this energy to reach towards constructive change through the power of the cardinal square.
A couple of days after the Sun’s opposition to Jupiter we have Mercury moving into a conjunction with Venus at 23˚23 Capricorn. This is part of the regular dance of Venus and Mercury who, as the planets orbiting between the Earth and the Sun, weave together our ability to understand and express ourselves as unique individuals. In this chart we still have the cardinal cross and the kite formation but now the Moon is emphasising the cardinal cross – it’s a time when we might act in unexpected ways or we might receive surprising news, things that shake us up, but not necessarily in a bad way. One of the keys to channelling the energy of the cardinal square, and also of the Mercury conjunction with Venus is to be proactive, take the initiative. Cardinal energy is the kind of energy that likes to start things, to kick things off, if you are the kind of person who likes to respond to things, to follow through what others have started, this energy is not so easy for you so try to do something which for you represents taking a new direction, even if it’s just that you start to walk the dog or travel to work using a different route.
On the 8th of January Mars squares Jupiter and this is when it is really important to channel that energy into something new, interesting and constructive. Enthusiastic, creative energy will enjoy and make the most of this energy whilst trying to keep things continuing on an old, tried and tested routine will be frustrating and is more likely to lead to people getting angry or aggressive. It is important to be open to new ideas and willing to follow new initiatives.
Then on the 11th of January we have Venus sextile Saturn, Venus conjunct Sun, Sun sextile Saturn – this is the inferior conjunction of Venus, a pivotal point in her retrograde journey the point on which the whole thing turns. Revisiting Erin Sullivan’s ‘Retrograde Planets’ we read that
One gets a cold hard look at one’s relationships and at what is relevant to one’s integrity at this time. It may be that there is an imbalance for a period while deeply mysterious transformations occur – so mysterious that one never really knows what has happened until several months have passed…
The area in which Venus is retrogressing becomes vulnerable to attack and is often the stage for a confrontation upon resuming direct motion. Unspoken messages, hints, nuances and subtleties become magnified and can be distorted, but they are nevertheless laden with implications…Venus plumbs the depths of undeveloped personal characteristics in the areas of the horoscope it is transiting.
So we can see that during the time of the inferior conjunction, when the ego (Sun) and values (Venus) come into close contact we will get hints about areas of our personality which are not as fully developed as they could be and which we are advised to build on in order to make future changes positively helpful rather than negatively challenging. That the inferior conjunction is ruled by Saturn and is in exact sextile to Saturn is significant because it shows that with patience, application and persistence we can really achieve something of lasting benefit at this time. It may mean dismantling some things, some aspect of our lives but at the same time it enables us to put in place firmer foundations for the future.