A Holiday Message from Planet Waves

Dear Friend and Reader:

SOL AND LUNA are now in Sagittarius, and we’re very nearly at the Capricorn solstice. This is a natural turning point in the cycle of the seasons and in our lives and, unfortunately, for many people the pressure is on. The origins are every bit as much cosmic as they are social, as the Sun aligns with the Galactic Core, Pluto happens to be right there, and this all coincides with the end of the lunar cycle and an extreme peak of the solar cycle.

In an effort to keep our work manageable as we prepare two different 2007 annual publications (The Spiral Door and the 2007 Almanac), Planet Waves Weekly will go to the minimum schedule through the holidays. This year, we’ve published more than 120 weekly, daily and monthly horoscopes, as many birthday reports and articles, and at least twice as many blogs. To ensure we bring the annual projects in for a safe landing, I’m turning my focus to that, to the greatest extent possible. The details follow in the few paragraphs below.

I recognize that the holidays are a difficult time of year for many, if not most, people — myself included. Here in the Northern Hemisphere, it’s also a somewhat frightening time of year, as the cave-person or primate part of our brains is indeed wondering where the Sun went and whether it will ever come back (note to brainstem, it will). For this reason, I’ve always endeavored to maintain a regular publication schedule through the end of the year, however, right now my common sense suggests I pace myself. As I am sure you can imagine, I want to do my best on the annual forecasts.

Birthday reports will continue Fridays (beginning with the first Capricorn entry at the end of this week), sent with a brief astrology highlights section. Mondays during this phase, I’ll send out a short highlights article, with a reminder that there is no horoscope that day (we are also finished with our supply of monthly horoscopes for the year, and we traditionally delay January monthly materials in all our editions until the annual is done). Weekly horoscopes will resume Friday, Jan. 5 with a regular edition of Planet Waves Weekly (article, birthdays and horoscope).

I anticipate publishing our annual materials (The Spiral Door and the almanac) in a time window that opens Sunday, Jan. 7, though I will very likely wait for the Libra Moon the 9th. Regular readers, please note these dates.

The almanac (which is not included with subscriptions) is a unique publication in that it’s the only guide to aspects of the minor planets that we know of. The change of status of Eris, Ceres and Pluto/Charon occurred long after most mass-market calendars, almanacs and ephemerides had already gone to press for the year. Here, our flexibility has come in handy. The Planet Waves 2007 almanac is the only one we know of that grants these three worlds full recognition.

You may purchase your copy here. Be the first to try our one-click payment system. (Note the almanac will be distributed as a printable PDF.)

For those who wish to keep in closer contact during the interim before publication of the annual editions, please tune into the daily astrology blog on Page Two or the Subscriber Homepage. That is now a team project and will continue through the holidays. I will remind you periodically. The direct link is on a tab above this article. Daily photos and article updates will continue on the main homepage through this time.

Sagittarius New Moon

This is indeed a special time in the year, and in the history of the times we are living in. We are now under the full influence of Pluto conjunct the Galactic Core, which is being activated by a New Moon and the Solstice. What we have, in effect, is an echo from the future involving this elusive thing called 2012, because the alignments that are taking place now occur in precisely this section of the sky with stunning exactitude. The solstice this week also marks six years to the day to the winter solstice of 2012, the end of a 1.8 million day day-count, or 5,125 year cycle, in the Mayan calendar.

Many people have been considering the approach of winter solstice 2012 since the Harmonic Convergence of August 16, 1987, the first time most people heard the “Mayan factor” mentioned. This is viewed many ways, but it seems to be a moment of a quantum leap of awareness on the (seemingly different) levels of personal development and the destiny of the world. Indeed, if I were to spell out the various factors involved, it would sound like trashy sci-fi — but that’s what happens when enough people don’t read the good stuff.

Six years is one of those magic numbers, for lack of a better term, and no matter what astrology you use, a great deal will have changed by then. The next six years make the last six look like the rehearsal for the school play, as all the outer planets change signs and several (including Uranus and Pluto) contact the Aries Point, provoking or symbolizing many global changes.

This week’s Capricorn solstice begins a kind of countdown. Just prior to this occurring, however, the Sun and Moon form a conjunction that’s exact at 9 am New York time Wednesday, Dec. 20. That is 2 pm in the UK and 3 pm European time, and 1 am Thursday, Dec. 21 in Sydney. Here is a worldwide time list for the event.

Here is one version of the chart, set for Brussels. Imagine Eris (formerly called Xena or 2003 UB 313) positioned at just a shade over 20 Aries, basically trine Mercury (Mercury is applying to Eris). Here’s a listing of about 75 planets of various species (note, there are several ways to display the list, fiddle around for a fascinating little trip).

The New Moon occurs in what some astrologers call the “anaretic degree.” This has various definitions, but generally these days it means either the last, or next to last, degree of a sign, in this case, Sagittarius. Anaretic in this usage pertains not so much to literal death but rather to transformational process. This seems to be a kind of hot spot in most charts, when it occurs, representing an intense area of growth. If you read charts you may notice that planets falling very late in a sign tend to collect energy, attention, focus and in some ways run the whole chart. This is one of several factors that points to a “you must learn this” message, as if the person or event represents the final exams at the end of a long cycle of experience. In some ways planets placed here work a little like Chiron, indicating a seeming debility or difficulty that then collects strength, mastery and intensity.

We are now having a lot of New Moon events in or around this degree of signs, though the current event is somewhat emphasized due to the 2012 factor, the presence of Pluto, the Galactic Core and the imminent change of season. The feeling is that of the whole cosmos teetering on a brink. But it’s an internal one, a kind of fulcrum moment of growth and personal maturity. One of the things we learn as we become adults is discernment. That is the ability to tell things apart.

We have a lot to learn when it comes to figuring out what, including what attitudes toward life, help or hinder us. This discernment factor is one of the most important ones that distinguishes an autonomous, self-actualized human being. We tend to think we’re making our own decisions, only to be pushed around by doctors, lawyers and Indian chiefs. So much focus on late Sagittarius is doing a lot more than suggesting that we learn to make up our own minds, be aware of our emotional and physical environments, and know what we’re eating. To put it simply, part of discernment is knowing what’s bothering us.

And also knowing what we want. Maturity calls for patience, yet it also calls for persistence about what we know are our most important goals, independent of any current commitments. The Core reminds us to live our truth — now. We are taught, again and again, that we will live our truth in the future. Naturally, we may never get there. Yet if we ask, “How can I live my truth now?” we may discover a surprising answer. If, that is, we ask.

The Galactic Core’s message is also about noticing how we are bossed around by our prejudices. One of my university professors, Dr. Robert Knox Dentan, began his anthropology class by informing us that 99% of what we know is wrong. He started with black and white. You’re not white and that guy next to you is not black. You’re kind of pinkish and he’s kind of brownish. This chalk is white. This chalkboard is dark gray. And so on — for an entire semester of having our prejudices, half-truths, feeble beliefs and half-baked notions about life dismantled.

Pluto cometh. The Galactic Core cometh. Get ready.

This is a composite view of our galaxy, the Milky Way, created in 2001 (credit and scientific caption). The band running through the center of our galaxy is at the heart of the creation mythology of the ancient Mayans, who saw it as a gateway through which humanity emerged. Called the Road to Xibalba, it is this band that the position of the Sun aligns with on Dec. 21, 2012, which occurs every 26,000 years. The two are very closely aligned now.

Sagittarius Solar Returns

If you are born during late Sagittarius, you are experiencing an aspect called Pluto conjunct the Sun. For birthdays going back to Dec. 15, it works [something] like this. Those born the 15th or 16th experienced this transit between late 2005 and 2006. Those born the 17th or 18th are currently experiencing it in 2006. Those born the 19th through the 21st are experiencing it from late 2006 through early 2008. The dates slide around a little (one day, give or take) due to leap years and based on how old you are. But for our purposes, all birthdays at the end of Sagittarius are experiencing this now.

Pluto conjunct the Sun is one of the most compelling transits, and it does not happen to everyone. Indeed, it only happens to about one-third of all people alive at any given time, because Pluto takes about three human lifetimes to orbit the Sun once. Pluto is currently moving at about its fastest (taking approximately 13 years to move one sign, vs. about 20 years at the slowest), so a few more people these days are experiencing it than before. If your birthday falls in this date range, you are one of them.

This is a transit of what we may politely call “profound transformation.” On either side of any half-decent Pluto transit, life is barely comparable or even recognizable. Pluto making an aspect to a planet besides the Sun can create this effect. But the Sun, as the center of the chart and the main vehicle of the personality in our life on Earth, responds on rather deep levels to transits of Pluto, and often with excellent results. It is change from the inside out, though what transforms often does more to subtract or burn off all that gets in the way of true self-expression rather than creating something new.

Metaphors for Pluto transits are things like separating the grain from the chaff; boiling off a broth to get a concentrated reduction; the Phoenix rising from the ashes; a caterpillar turning into a butterfly; Casanova coming out of the closet and becoming a Queer activist; Bozo the Clown being cast as the next 007. You get the idea, right?

Now, this kind of transformation holds true under all circumstances where a Pluto transit is involved. But Pluto transits are not always well understood by astrologers, some of whom still tend to be a little doom and gloomy about them, preaching the gospel of crisis. In fact, if I were opening a bootcamp for astrologers, I would start with how not to fuck up an interpretation of a Pluto transit. There is really only one time I worry about clients undergoing this kind of event: when they just don’t get it. When they cling like mad to what was, or what they want to be, even as what is and what will be are rushing upon them like the cosmic torrent that they are.

I worry when I say, “Okay this is big” and they say, “Yes, I’m getting a new rug in the living room.” This does not happen often.

Since you’re born with your Sun close to, or exactly conjunct, the Galactic Core, you are accustomed to a lifetime of intensity. Pluto is a chilly little gumball compared to the supermassive black hole that your natal Sun is conjunct every day of your life. There is little you can take for granted, even on a really good day — but I would guess you wouldn’t trade that for the world, because you know your awareness is tuned to something rather odd, different and extremely special. So special, indeed, that it’s difficult to do something with.

The Galactic Core has a timeless quality. Located 26,000 light years away from the Earth, its light is ancient light and its message a distant one. Whatever is happening today in the Galactic Core, that light will reach the Earth in tens of thousands of years. As I have said before, imagine a place where there is no darkness because the stars are so concentrated they blaze like daylight at midnight. Imagine many worlds where gravity slows time down to a near halt, and where life is experienced like a slow animation where every thought, idea and emotion is experienced at full intensity, for long enough to actually consider and feel — vastly different than the fleeting patterns and cross-hatched mental whims we experience here, in our the distant corner of the galaxy.

Pluto will localize, focus and make immediate the message of the Core; call your attention to the long, long process of living out this natal alignment, giving it shape and form as something that compels you to act now, because you need to do so. Pluto is like placing a lens over the Galactic Core, and one where the beam of light is directly pointed at you. This promises not only a new level of understanding, and not only the courage to act, but the gift of that action being inevitable. In essence, the choices that you have wanted to make for so long finally become imminent. I trust that you know what they are — and that by the end of this year, you may decide that 99% of what you knew was wrong. Once you figure out what it is, that one percent will count for a lot.

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