Maya del Mar's Daykeeper Journal: Astrology, Consciousness and Transformation

For a list
of links to previous feature articles,
click here

J A N U A R Y   2 0 0 3   F E A T U R E   A R T I C L E

What's the Shape of 2003?
by Maya del Mar

Perhaps the tardiness of this article is a clue to the character of 2003—things moving along, but not necessarily on time, or as expected. After all, we do start off this year with Mercury stationing and turning retrograde.

2003 is a "five" year. In the Tarot deck it’s a Hierophant year, a year of teaching and learning. In numerology, it’s a transition year. It’s the middle of a nine-year cycle, when we shift from the first four basic years to the next four more complex years. Nothing is settled once and for all in a five year. It’s a year full of variety and changes, many of them unexpected. We’ll deal with completely new situations, perhaps in new ways. Hang onto your hats!

Chiron brings changes to Capricorn.

The chart for the New Year, set for midnight local time, shows us the year’s foundation. Central is Sun conjoined with Maverick Chiron in Capricorn. This means unpredictable changes in established structures. It includes social structures such as government and business, concrete structures such as buildings and the earth herself, boundaries, such as national borders.

These changes also include all Capricorn energy, especially Capricorn Sun signs. So Caps, you may be in for a wild ride this year. By this time next year you will be ready to push ahead and work with your new forms.

Everybody, take good care of your spine, joints, and especially knees. Skin too. Chronic problems may heal spontaneously, or in unusual ways. Alternative medicine will be especially helpful. Chiropractors, plan for a busy year.

Chiron travels slowly this year, over a few degrees of central Capricorn. For most of the year, it opposes GW’s Sun and the U.S. Sun. When Chiron transits Sun, it points out both wounds to Sun, and the potential for healing. Wounds to the solar principle can show up as arrogance, narcissism, or egomania. One may feel that one’s purpose (Sun) is God-given, and therefore the ends justify the means. Chiron can also increase the controlling, destructive side of Sun.

We can see, then, that in 2003 the U.S. will increase its autocratic and controlling isolationist style, with the predictable consequences of increasing anti-U.S. feeling throughout the world, and certainly raising the potential of anti-U.S. terrorism. This is a perfect formula for keeping the "war on terrorism" going, and the arms makers busy.

Chiron also highlights health issues. The deterioration of the health care system may necessitate some new health planning. The broad field of alternative medicine will burgeon.

Chiron in Capricorn, along with Saturn in Cancer, will also bring changes to Aries and Libra energy. Wounds and healing can occur. There will also be hard work and a new sense of inner authority for all four of the cardinal signs—Capricorn, Aries, Cancer and Libra.

Saturn and Pluto complete their opposition by June.

Saturn, Capricorn’s planet, is still traveling retrograde in Gemini as the year begins. Information channels, bureaucracy, and rigidity in education will persist. Geminis still feel the pressure to toe the line and shape up.

Although Saturn and Pluto will not reach exact opposition again this go-round, they are close to opposition and moving closer. This opposition, which has been in orb since summer 2001, is a major evolutionary force, and has made us all work very hard re-aligning our lives. We have all felt the pressure of those two slave drivers.

Nationally, one result has been a rapid shifting of money and resources to the elites. Another outcome is the stifling of civil liberties through the legal system. A third outcome is a mammoth increase in repressive government bureaucracy. A fourth result is the near-perfection of a state propaganda network.

By the time Saturn stations and turns direct on February 22, it will be less than three degrees from exact opposition to Pluto. This will be the grand finale of the great Saturn-Pluto opposition, and it will be a big one. The structural changes of these last two years will begin to manifest with a bang. This would be a likely time for war to begin, given the current world situation. Or any of a variety of situations to begin or end.

The Pluto-Saturn opposition hangs on through May’s eclipses, which set the pieces of our two-year projects in place.

Saturn enters Cancer in June.

On June 4, Saturn starts a two-and-a-half year run in the emotional, nest-making sign of Cancer. This will herald a major change in the entire work and social emphases in the world.

Now we focus on home, family, emotions, and the building of security. This will be especially significant for both Cancer Sun U.S. and Cancer Sun GW Bush. Saturn says it’s time to grow up. It’s the Great Teacher. Saturn-in-Cancer years occur about every 30 years, and are always particularly significant for the United States.

The Saturn transit of the U.S. Sun occurs in tandem with the Chiron influence, and there is likely to be a good deal of insecurity in the United States this summer in regard to its place in the world, and its inner authority. When insecure, Cancer strikes out defensively. Both the U.S. and GW are prone to over-defensive behavior anyway, just being Cancers.

All Cancer Sun people will begin a new 30-year cycle of establishing their inner authority. They will have much support to do so in their own fashion, and to build a more authentic self. This is because both Uranus and Mars are spending most of the year in Pisces, another emotional water sign, where they can be most understanding of Saturn’s challenges, and offer their energy and brilliance.

The spotlight on Pisces begins in March.

Pisces is a major sign of the year, and thus Pisces people, too, are featured in 2003. On March 10 Uranus leaves inventive air sign Aquarius, and enters compassionate Pisces to begin a seven-year sojourn with the fishes. All watery realms will be awakened, from oceans and wetlands to emotions and the arts. Look for an artistic renaissance to begin this year, the Year of the artistic Sheep. Artistic creativity, in fact, is a fine way to work with the potential chaos of Uranus in Pisces. With Pisces, photography and video work, music, and the performing arts are spotlighted.

Earth’s waters will be featured, and we may see uncontrollable deluges and floods, especially in summer, and during October and November. Pisces is associated with imagination, dreams, and inspiration. It deals with unconscious realms, and can lead to confusion. As with water, boundaries are difficult for Pisces.

This includes all boundaries—personal, geographical, political and social. Look, then, for fluctuating boundaries, which includes breakthroughs of new ideas, new forms, new ways of looking at the world, new nations, and new ways of being. Indeed, all of the arts can thrive in such a creative atmosphere.

So can fanaticism grow. Imaginations can be easily fired up for a holy cause.

Mars and Venus will go all the way in their quests.

In the New Year’s chart, we find Mars and Venus together in Scorpio, the extremist sign, the survival sign. Both planets are prominent throughout the year, and in Scorpio they both attract crises. Even as they move through other signs, they will carry the intense Scorpionic energy that they picked up as they traveled together in Scorpio during most of December 2002.

Mars and Venus together are the artist and the lover, and Scorpio provides a very fertile bed for creativity in the arts and in love.

Venus relates to the desire nature, attracting what one wants, and Mars to the energetic nature which goes out after the desires. In Scorpio, desires are very intense, and there is a ruthlessness about pursuing them. Also, much is done in secrecy. Scorpio defines the year’s modus operandi. Scorpio Sun signs will find it easy to get what they want in 2003.

Mars is the star of 2003.

Warrior Mars is particularly important in 2003. It is closer to earth than it has been for hundreds of years. Besides that, it is eclipsed by Moon four times this year. In addition, it retrogrades for two months this summer. That means it moves slowly "backwards," and in so doing stimulates heavily the area which it traverses three times.

In mid-June Mars enters Pisces. Things can start to get a little crazy then. Assertive Mars will take a leadership role with Uranus and Saturn. They are all freshly into water signs and still neophytes in the watery milieu. None of them have had time to learn to swim or row. Perhaps the combination becomes a bit too chaotic, and gets into trouble. For on July 29, Mars turns retrograde at 11 Pisces. Mars will have two months to learn to swim—and perhaps to clean up the mess it created. Retrograde gives 2 months to rethink, review, and re-prepare for new action, which can begin to manifest when Mars turns direct on Sept. 27, conjoined impulsive Uranus.

Mars leaves Pisces in mid-December.

In Pisces, Mars’ highest function is to be the spiritual warrior. Unfortunately this impulse can become attached to moral crusades, and to fanaticism in spreading righteousness. Remember that Mars began this year with a Scorpio vibration, and Scorpio can be ruthless.

In Pisces, Mars acts in a broad and universal way. Boundaries are dissolved. For instance, all centralization will be promoted, such as that of the media. A global movement of workers, and the disenfranchised, will spread. New art forms will emerge, as old ones are combined in new ways. Perhaps through global warming, and bizarre weather, people will come to understand the cycles of nature.

Given current world conditions, Mars in Pisces could be used for biochemical and gas attacks.

Expansive Jupiter travels through the sign of the King, Leo, and the sign of the worker, Virgo.

Jupiter expands and enlarges. It is now transiting through Leo, expanding central control, along with creativity. In late August, Jupiter moves into Virgo for a year, where it will expand the areas of work, service, health, and labor. Jupiter in Leo helps the privileged; in Virgo, it helps the underprivileged.

Jupiter in Virgo, Pisces’ opposite, will expand and aid the Piscean energy. It will ground it, and bring daily life and the common touch into Pisces’ ideals.

When Pluto turns direct on August 27, it will face quite a different worldview than was in place when it turned retrograde in March. We have moved from a strict focus on the ruling class to a focus on the people, the common people of the world.

This is the changed milieu in which Pluto will work its deep transformation for the next few years.

Long-range U.S. changes begin now.

Part of this change is the beginning of a major U.S. transit which will happen in 2005. Uranus in Pisces then will square the U.S. Uranus, which promises a new freedom for the people. We feel the new seeds being planted as Uranus enters Pisces this year. And we also see the U.S. Uranus being stirred by Mars three times this year—in mid-July, mid-August, and early October. Those periods will give us clues to the changing future of the United States.

Month-by-month highlights.

Especially active periods begin in February, especially mid-February. We have then a combination of harsh aggressive energy, and expansive, idealistic vision. "Crusade" comes to mind.

March gives us a big change in our energy field, along with the peak of the Saturn-Pluto opposition. The Virgo Full Moon spotlights the fixed star Benetnash, which means "hired mourners," and often denotes catastrophe.

April features Uranus and Saturn, freedom and control, which can be confusing.

May gives us the eclipses which (almost) close a big chapter of world affairs and of our lives. Moon, which represents the people, is pressured during April and May.

In June, July, and August, Moon travels "out-of-bounds." This puts it outside the ecliptic, all on its own, and life might get a little wild. Mars and Saturn have their close transits to earth now, and they have free rein. They are both traveling in water signs. Floods are certainly likely. Intensity is certain.

Pluto turns direct on August 27, and live is very lively for the remainder of the year. Mars turns direct in September, Neptune in October, and Uranus in November. In November we also have two eclipses which complement the eclipses of both May and November of 2002. November is our bridge month, when we finish the old paradigm, and begin a new one.

The December Full Moon conjoins Pluto, and shines its spotlight on the year’s transformations, as well as what they promise for the future..

By Christmas, Moon is again out-of-bounds. Moon is people, and perhaps the people are stepping out of line.

Featured locations throughout the entire year are the Far East, South Africa, Turkey, the Balkans, Latin America, Alaska and, as usual, Washington DC.