The comfort zone is a psychological state in which one feels familiar, safe, at ease, and secure. You never change your life until you step out of your comfort zone; change begins at the end of your comfort zone.
~ Roy T. Bennett
And here you thought a New Year would bring something new.... ;-) Well, all things old are new again, but still retain ties to the past.
And how else could it be? Everything in the future will unfold from the present, and everything in the present has evolved out of the past. The Cardinal Cross is simply pushing us to take the next step on a long journey down a rocky road.
I am not a teacher, but an awakener.
~ Robert Frost
In 2010 the Cardinal Cross involved Uranus, Pluto, Jupiter and Saturn. This time Saturn is not part of the uproar and actually plays a more soothing, stabilizing role in the scuffle. But we'll look more at that later. For now, let's mark the corners of the Grand Cross aspect pattern in the Cardinal signs (Aries, Cancer, Libra, Capricorn).
Let's start with the Uranus-Pluto square which continues to form one side of this box figure. These two slow-moving planets made 7 (!) passes from 2012 to 2015. They are now finished with their exact passes but their influence is still unfolding as they gradually grow more distant in their orb.
They are currently 3°18' away from being exact, which is still pretty close! Still well within the range of influence, when other planets come along and interact with them through squares (90°) and oppositions (180°) they act like a lightning rod to channel that core energy once again.
In this case, Uranus takes a somewhat more central position in the Cross than Pluto does, being closer in orb to the other planets of the Cross. Uranus and Jupiter are currently opposite. We had the first pass of these two on Dec.26 and they will click again on Mar.02 and Sep.28.
Jupiter and Uranus instigate a tug of war between two different kinds of vision and aspiration. Jupiter aims for creating a world based on morality, faith and expansion of knowledge, and since he is in Libra, wants this to be fair and balanced. On the other hand, Uranus wants change and revelation that opens us up to the trans-personal realm – that part of existence that reaches beyond our personal awareness. Both planets have an agenda that is ultimately about freedom, change and release.
While Jupiter's qualities are not meant to be rooted in the human ego, they do need to be connected to and interpreted through our ego consciousness. Uranus cares not for the ego part of us ("It's not my area...") but seeks to pry open our minds to what lies beyond ego awareness.
Problems cannot be solved by the
same level of thinking that created them.
~ Albert Einstein, paraphrased. Original quote: "...a new type of thinking is essential if mankind is to survive and move toward higher levels." (more about this quote)
So: Jupiter and Uranus are similar, in the sense that they both want to expand our consciousness toward a new connection with the non-physical realms of life. However, they do so in very different ways and take their missions in dramatically different directions. These distinctions become quite pronounced when they're in opposition, since they are the most separate and distinct from each other.
Therefore, the Jupiter-Uranus opposition can create a situation where we may become polarized in terms of how we envision optimal change and how we let go of the stuff that gets in the way of that change.
On one side we have Jupiter: many of us seek to embrace freedom and insight, but want it to collaborate with our current reality so that it dovetails conveniently with our current perspective and comfort level.
Certainly continuity is a good thing, and no matter where we want to go, we must always start with where we are. So it's important not to needlessly throw away what has been, and much better to allow change to grow out of what came before it. This kind of change does the least amount of gratuitous damage. On the other hand, it's often true that you can't get to someplace new by following the same old path, so Jupiter's way doesn't always do the job.
Alternatively, we have Uranus. Are you ready for change that will challenge you to the core and allow you to break free of old structures that are now blocking your evolution rather than supporting it? Because that level of change is pretty essential to the Uranus contract. Don't expect business as usual. Leave your need for control at the door. And be prepared to find stability within yourself rather than through outside circumstances.
The point of the opposition aspect is to find a balance point somewhere in between the Jupiter and Uranus agendas—ideally one that will embrace and honour them both to some extent. It's important not to idealize one and vilify the other because that inevitably leads to even more instability and a vicious circle of counterproductive over-reaction.
This challenge is not just something you'll encounter at the Full Moon in Cancer. This is something we've all been wrestling with since last November and will continue through this year until October. This Full Moon in Cancer just happens to be a time when the Jupiter-Uranus opposition is brought more sharply into focus, and this focus will repeat throughout most of this year as other planets interact with the opposition.
So, you do have time to work with this challenge. Don't feel you have to do it all in one sitting, but don't keep shoving it onto the back burner either. Uranus in particular has a way of forcing the issue by charging off on his own and dragging you with him, especially if he feels ignored or taken for granted for too long.
For example, you may need to re-examine your ethics, beliefs and understanding in light of new information that emerges when the opposition gets jangled. Your usual philosophy or perspective on life may fall short of dealing effectively with new situations and learning. As a result, it may be necessary to reconsider your familiar conclusions and opinions. You might even need to go back to the very roots of how you arrived at those views and then piece together new views based on the new information.
Incredible change happens in your life when you decide to take control of what you do have power over instead of craving control over what you don't.
~ Steve Maraboli, Life, the Truth, and Being Free
At right angles to the Jupiter-Uranus square is the Sun-Moon opposition (i.e. the Full Moon axis). The Moon is in its own sign of Cancer, which strengthens your intuition, creativity and nurturing instincts, but it can also amplify your need for nurturing, as well as your moodiness and emotional reactions.
This is a good time to cultivate a stronger Inner Parent within yourself that your Inner Child can turn to when you're feeling insecure, upset, vulnerable, overwhelmed or just in need of some cuddling. The Sun in Capricorn can help provide the Inner Parent that offers stability, grounding and fortitude. Therefore, the fluid Moon is well anchored by a sturdy Sun.
Now, here's the rub: the Sun is conjunct Pluto, which also means the Moon opposes Pluto. Pluto in Capricorn can sometimes feel just a little overbearing, and his idea of nurturing and healthy containment might feel more like being smothered inside a hermetically sealed mayonnaise jar.
It's important to realize that Pluto actually needs that containment in order to do its transformative thing, without distractions or the energy leaking out. So if you're in a situation where you feel captured by something beyond your control, it's wise to think of it as an incubator meant to reshape your experience and response to life.
That doesn't mean you should become passive and simply let it cook you like a turkey. We are always required to be a participant in the process that transforms us, and often that requires us to push back against what feel like overpowering forces. When you have little choice but to accept that your life has been invaded by an intolerable reality, and even when you are cocooned by a welcome reality, it's how you respond to it that matters in the end.
There are many possible lessons to be learned within Pluto's incubator. You may be challenged to realize that you actually can endure the unendurable after all. You might be provoked into discovering and embracing your power, so that you become able to rise up and take a stand. Or you might be confronted by a situation that penetrates your preconceived ideas and invites you to look with new eyes and see what was in your blind spot.
Pluto often pushes us to endure something difficult in order to deepen our internal awareness and look beyond our usual perceptions. During Pluto times, it is usually best to simplify our lives and foster our humility, which can minimize exhaustion and lessen the pain of disappointment, frustration and stress.
With the Moon in opposition to the Sun-Pluto conjunction, there may well be emotional implications involving trust, security and authority. Your ability to maintain authority in your own life will likely hinge on your ability to turn to your own Inner Parent to meet your emotional needs, rather than relying only on outside people and situations.
I do not think, sir, you have any right to command me, merely because you are older than I,
or because you have seen more of the world than I have; your claim to superiority
depends on the use you have made of your time and experience.
~ Charlotte Brontë, Jane Eyre
The entire Cardinal Cross effect is bound to shake up your experience of authority and security, and lead you to think twice about the role these qualities play in managing and dealing with the emergence of change and new potential. Whether you are delighted or disappointed by emerging changes, this is a time when you are challenged to rethink how you interact with control.
It may be necessary to take responsibility for controlling that change process. On the other hand, you might feel like you've been coerced into white water rafting with your hands tied behind your back. Either way, this is a good time to shed any old unresolved issues you might have about power and control, so you can embrace your strength and keep your balance while the world around you changes.
Surprisingly, Saturn now becomes your ally, providing some reassuring, friendly sage advice. Saturn is the dispositor of the Sun and Pluto (meaning he is the planetary ruler of the sign they are in: Capricorn), so he definitely has a say in what happens now. Being in Sagittarius, Saturn understands the need to work toward manifesting a vision while still leaving room for new possibilities to emerge.
Saturn is also on good terms with both ends of the Jupiter-Uranus opposition through sextile (60°) and trine (120°) aspects, respectively. Together they form a Wedge aspect pattern. Saturn is therefore in a position to contribute some grounding yet inspiring insight to the Jupiter-Uranus squabble.
Saturn knows there's a crucial difference between dismantling the old to make room for the new, versus trashing the whole place in the name of venting old, pent-up rage and frustration. Saturn believes that change works best when it inflicts the least amount of wanton damage.
In other words, it's best to keep your focus on your most central purpose, and don't be distracted by the urge to cross over the boundaries of moral decency and practical considerations. And at the times when things crash and burn, as they sometimes do, Saturn's advice is the same – be guided by your principles and don't lose sight of your sense of purpose, even if you have to adjust it in response to changing circumstances.
We are like the little branch that quivers during a storm, doubting our strength
and forgetting we are the tree—deeply rooted to withstand all life’s upheavals.
~ Dodinsky, In the Garden of Thoughts
What complicates Saturn's beneficial role is that he links to the Moon and Sun through aspects that can detract from the well structured energies of the Cardinal Cross and the Wedge aspect patterns. Specifically, Saturn makes a quincunx aspect (150°) to the Moon and a semi-sextile (30°) to the Sun, forming what I like to call an Irritation Wedge. These aspects (sometimes called inconjuncts) tend to confuse or distort the line of connection between the planets involved.
In this case, Saturn's Sagittarian outlook makes it a little difficult for that stable Capricorn Sun and the feeling-based Cancer Moon to relate to Saturn's message of visionary change. Cancer Moon may prefer a response that is more concise and predictable, since that will provide the most comforting security and support. And the Capricorn Sun might not approve of mixing concrete actuality with unpredictable possibilities quite so much.
However, Saturn's message is that leaving room for spontaneous growth and spiritual (non-physical) aspiration is necessary to the best outcome. And that means there can be no concrete assurances that the Moon's emotional needs will be satisfied; nor will the result be so final and enduring that we'll never need to deal with those issues again. Put another way: support and progress are attainable but neither comes with guarantees. The boundaries we erect must be kept flexible and "organic," not rigid or arbitrary, if they are going to work at all.
Fortunately Chiron forms his own Wedge pattern with the Sun-Moon opposition, providing some support and insight to the Sun and Moon. He offers some comforting distraction from Saturn's pontificating directives. Chiron's message is: surrender and accept. Don't push the river. Just let the current carry you and trust that you will be brought to healing.
However, Saturn disagrees, being in a conflicting square aspect (90°) to Chiron. He believes we must work hard to attain that healing, consciously and intentionally, not sit back passively and drift down the stream. Chiron, on the other hand, feels that Saturn's hard work can result in little more than "pushing the river," which tends to just muddy the waters and disturb the natural flow of things. Neither side is 100% right, so it's important to find ways to satisfy both sides of the Saturn-Chiron argument.
People think a soul mate is your perfect fit, and that's what everyone wants.
But a true soul mate is a mirror, the person who shows you everything that is holding you back,
the person who brings you to your own attention so you can change your life.
~ Elizabeth Gilbert, Eat, Pray, Love
The bottom line in all this is that the next couple of weeks—and indeed throughout most of this year—will likely be a demanding uphill climb. You could be profoundly challenged to successfully push yourself beyond your familiar comfort zone. Chiron's healing dream notwithstanding, this probably won't be a time when you can blissfully coast on the flow of it all, business as usual. More likely, you will experience change, disruption and awakening that requires you to make adjustments on many levels.
Right now Mercury is in the final degree of Sagittarius and has just recently turned direct (Jan.08). Therefore you could be unusually aware of impending endings and the passing away of the old, without much clarity on the horizon to indicate what's coming next. Something new is coming, but what it is has yet to be fully conceived and formed. Actuality and possibility must work together.
This process can be stimulating, challenging and exciting on one hand, yet may also feel like your world is coming apart at the seams. Some of it will be fascinating and motivating, while other parts will be perplexing or upsetting. Mostly it will probably be somewhere in the middle of these extremes.
The Full Moon is in a Water sign, Cancer, so your reactions are bound to be more emotional than usual. With no planets currently in Fixed signs, stability and continuity might be hard to come by or you might have to improvise as you go along. It's best not to assume you can just dig in your heels and demand that the shifting currents flow conveniently around you, leaving you high and dry and untouched.
The trick is to stay awake and aware. Respond to the moment in the moment, but also draw on past experience and know that you're forging a new consciousness. Continue to be guided by where you're trying to go, even as the path twists and turns.
What's really important to you? What principles and integrity do you need to hold onto, to avoid being dragged out of your centre in the upheaval? If you're not sure what your values are, think of someone you respect or someone who really cares about you – would they be proud of your actions and decisions?
I'm not suggesting you need to put others' opinions or expectations above your own, but consider that these people probably represent your own best intentions and aspirations. If they would disapprove then the best side of you might as well, and vice versa. If you're still uncertain, give yourself some quiet time for reflection before making a decision or taking action. Stay on your toes and keep your mind open!
We can't be afraid of change. You may feel very secure in the pond that you are in, but if you never venture out of it, you will never know that there is such a thing as an ocean, a sea. Holding onto something that is good for you now, may be the very reason why you don't have something better.
~ C. JoyBell C.
Cheerful, adaptable Mercury travels through conventional, structured Capricorn, bringing out his analytical, focused side. This is a good time to plan your projects and map out a game plan to reach your goals. It is probably best to choose discipline over distraction. Communication, ideas and awareness may become serious, structured, grounded and manifest now. Just don't let them become suppressed or censored. This is a great time to do some serious planning and organizing for future projects and goals. It is also a good time for analyzing and evaluating what you have been involved with during the past year or so. What have you learned? What information has come to you that has led you into new directions? What goals have you achieved, and what goals do you want to pursue now? What plan of action is required to get you from here to there? It may be a time when you can face some hard reality and tough decisions better than you normally do. Because Mercury in Capricorn tends to be serious and factual, it may also be a time when you are more prone to depression or discouragement. It will help to schedule regular breaks in your routine to get away and plug your head into a different perspective for a while.
This can be a time of romance and dreamy desire on one hand, or deceptive manipulation and self-serving negotiation on the other hand. At its best, this transit can inspire enormous creativity and healing faith in love and abundance. We can be extremely open to the loftiest possibilities of our close relationships and our ability to attract what and who we desire. However, it may not be as easy to assess these areas in light of the realities that must be dealt with in order to realise that potential. We may find it easier to have faith in the power of negotiation – that the Universe will ensure our desired outcome – but it is also easy to slide into wishful thinking that loses touch with the reality of the situation. If you are considering a major change involving income, investment, spending or resources, it is probably a good idea to do a reality check with a trusted friend or advisor. If you are starting a new relationship or negotiating changes to an existing one, it might be wise to take a long-term view to wait and see if your dreams really will come true or if your hopes are colouring your thinking a bit too much. A reality check with a trusted friend might also help with this. This transit begins a new cycle that brings these issues into our lives to explore and gradually unfolds over the next 12 months (approximately).
There is a lot of potential for both healing and harm under this transit. The forcefulness of Mars is like a surgeon's scalpel that can heal by cutting through resistance, lethargy, pain or denial – but could also be a knife that causes damage when not used with precision and care. The healing aspect of this energy can bring some relief to chronic or persistent problems, but if inflicted with anger, hostility or insensitivity it could just aggravate those problems. Physical energy could be affected by this transit, either beginning a new approach that can bring improved strength, or by depleting your energy through physical, emotional or spiritual malaise. You might feel a bit discouraged or powerless...or you might start to see a light at the end of the tunnel that you can start to move toward. This is the beginning of a new cycle of working with these combined energies, which lasts about 2 years. To participate with positive intention in this initiation, it can help to observe what conflicts, problems or struggles come up around this time, since there is something about these issues that will unfold and develop over the next two years.
Today, and up to a couple of days before and after, things can feel like they're starting to make sense. What you read, hear and observe may seem more obvious and your ability to put this into words could flow more easily. You might identify and figure out how to utilize the tools, skills, assets and ideas that could bring you further down the road toward whatever destination you're pointed toward. However, a reality check about how wise it might be to act on these ideas and benefits is still a good idea.
The impulsive forward action of Mars meets the serious structure of Saturn. The resulting friction can often generate considerable heat in the form of frustration, argument, conflict and stress – but also productivity and results for hard work. Your efforts may seem thwarted and your actions blocked at every turn. Your sensitivity to problems with authority figures can be especially high, as well as your sensitivity to others not cooperating with your own role as an authority figure. The youthful, free spirit in you is somehow required to deal with the serious, responsible, cautious side of you, and a power struggle between the two energies can easily result. If one side wins out over the other, either depression and guilt or rebellion and obsession may result.
However, you are not without power or ability! This friction can also be put to use in very productive ways. Your energy, desire and goals can be made manifest and concrete – even if possibly forced by circumstance. Obstacles can strengthen us, if we work with them instead of just fighting against them. To minimise interpersonal problems, remember that assertiveness is important, but aggression or rigidity will usually only get the other person's back up. You may find yourself in a situation where you must defend or assert your personal boundaries. Or, you might find it difficult to comply with someone else's boundaries. If the heat from this transit starts to overwhelm you, take some time out, find a safe (perhaps creative?) outlet to vent your feelings, and then find a new way to approach the problem.
Happy Solar Return to all Aquarians! While the Sun travels through Aquarius, we all have a chance to explore our rebellious, individualistic and futuristic Aquarian nature. This heralds a time to explore beyond the status quo and conventional reality, beckoning you to reach out to the lost threads of who you are. You may become more aware of your individual uniqueness and your part in the Great Collective – both your surrounding community and the Collective Unconscious. In order to fulfil the unique fingerprint of your life's purpose, it is sometimes necessary to be rebellious, spontaneous, and to be open to the unexpected. You might become aware of the need for these qualities under this transit. There is always a constant tension between the need to conform to society's formula of what works best versus the need to step off the main path to explore new experiences, and both are equally necessary to the health of both the individual and the greater community. Archetypally, it is in Aquarius that we encounter our personal experience of the battle between "the needs of the many" versus "the needs of the few." During the Sun's adventure through Aquarius, be open to the ways that this dynamic operates in your life. What can trigger or inspire you into rebellion or going against the conventional flow of the world around you? What will motivate you into being a team player, when you apply your energies to support or defend "the needs of the many?" What visions of the future do you see when you are in either mode of being? This is a time when you may have the opportunity to observe and learn about both sides of yourself – the part that feels like it's "me against the world" and the part that feels like a part of that world.
Close one-on-one relationships with people (close friends, lovers, partners of all kinds) could possibly benefit by being taken to a deeper level now, through creatively combining balanced harmony with deep connection. Just be careful that intimacy and bonding don't go over the top into obsession or domination. There is a brief opportunity now to become more authentic in how you relate to those close to you and how you establish a balance of power with them. The trick is to do this without trying to suppress, control or overpower the other person's interests. Financially, it is a time when you may have an opportunity to profit in your dealings with banks, insurance companies, taxes, and other institutions that deal with collective money.
Your mind is very open to imagination, dreams and compassion under this transit, with a little applied effort and focus. This can be a very creative time, when ideas flow like a magical river. It can also be easy to get caught up in yearning and fantasizing about your hidden wishes, although it is possible to channel this into creative expression. (e.g., writing poetry, dancing, wistful music, singing in the shower, whatever!) The possible disadvantage is that you might want so much to reach a state of inspired intuition, magical outlook and effortless communication, that you are willing to be deceived rather than fall short of what you are hoping for. Listening sympathetically to others' problems may come easily now, and you are more likely to get a compassionate response from others about your own problems. However, it may also be difficult to draw clear and firm boundaries with others, since you are more susceptible to the emotional gravity of others. It is ultimately a time for optimism, hope, creativity and intuition, although it's wise to keep at least one foot on the ground.
Unresolved problems and old wounds in relationships and finances may be in the foreground now, with potential for a new beginning and healing. However, in order to heal something, it is first necessary to become more aware of what is out of balance, which can make a situation seem to get worse before it gets better. You have the ability to wound those close to you, as well as to bring healing, as you explore what is and isn't working in your relationships. It is also a time when your approach to finances and resources may require that you face some hard realities that may not be easily or quickly resolved, but dealing with any problems will give you the chance to achieve a new balance. This is especially true when it comes to the ways that you see your physical resources as a reflection of your self-worth, and the relationships in your life as a reflection of your lovability. These issues may become aggravated under this transit, but ultimately this is meant to increase your awareness of these issues so that you can start to heal them in new ways.
Mercury finally leaves the shadow—the part of the zodiac where it was retrograde. This means the confusion, delays and miscommunications of the last 2 months have mostly dissipated and things should be more or less back to normal (whatever that is). The difference is that you now have the benefit of seeing things from a different perspective after having reconsidered, rethought and rehashed information and perceptions over the past 2 months. This gives you more choices than you had before. In fact, you may find that although you thought something was a good idea a month or two ago, you now realize that a different approach, decision or way of understanding it is better. If you've been waiting until Mercury finished with the retrograde cycle before you made a final decision about something or taking action on something, this is the time to take another look at whatever that is. Just don't forget your common sense, and remember that Mercury is only one factor to take into consideration regarding the timing of a decision. Use your best judgment and wisdom.
Finances, relationships, social contacts and/or pleasures may seem blocked or require extra effort right now. Manifesting your desires may require added hard work, but this struggle could also bring you closer to your goals. It may feel like there is a huge rock blocking your path that keeps you from fulfilling your heart's desire. It may be necessary to face some difficult aspect of your situation before it is possible to know how to proceed. This is ultimately a problem to be solved by confronting that which is unrealistic, unworkable, or just not in your best interest. This can also be a time when you arrive at a crossroads and must make some firm choices, or when circumstances might force you to change your direction. This transit can make your choice clear, although it might not be the one you hoped for.
Let us notify you of updates!
Subscribe now to our Website Newsletter. (Your contact information is never shared.)
© 2017 Wendy Guy. All rights reserved. This material may not be copied or used without the author's written permission. Astrology diagrams © Wendy Guy unless otherwise noted. Most or all of the quotes on this page were found at GoodReads.com. Artwork for Cancer by StockShoppe via CanStockPhoto.com. Photo of group discussion from Unspash.com via Pexels.com; original artist unknown.