Maya del Mar's Daykeeper Journal: Astrology, Consciousness and Transformation
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J A N U A R Y   2 0 0 3
M O N T H L Y   A S T R O L O G I C A L   I N F L U E N C E S

January Astrological Influences

by Maya del Mar

Winter Solstice is marked by the Sun entering the sign of Capricorn, where it travels during most of January. Capricorn is a sign of building, of structure, and of creating firm foundations. At Solstice the Sun is reborn, we are reborn, and our first order of business is to ground ourselves in the Earth. This is Capricorn’s special talent—creating a solid platform of security from which we can do our work in the world.

Building, then, is January’s work. Traditionally we begin the year with New Year’s Resolutions, which represent our new goals and purposes for the year—our building plan, so to speak. To assure that the building proceeds correctly, that our structure is sound, we need to have control.

Thus control, being in charge, is important to Capricorn planets—and to Saturn as well.

Saturn is the planet associated with Capricorn.

Saturn helps us to put care and order into our lives, to create an enduring structure. (Saturn rules bones—the skeletal structure.) Saturn can be a very hard taskmaster. Things must be done right, and according to careful plans. Saturn aims to secure its base.

Saturn now, during Capricorn time, has special influence.

Saturn is traveling through Gemini, where it has been for two years. Saturn in Gemini puts a focus on information and connections. Through the spread of information we are becoming ever more interconnected. Saturn rules government, and government wants to control this information flow.

Saturn puts a spotlight on those signs and planets whose positions it touches as it moves around the zodiac. It is now completing its transit of the U.S. Mars in Gemini. Gemini is a movement-communication sign, and Mars is aggressive energy. Automobiles, business deals, and being "hooked up" are some expressions of Mars in Gemini. Mars is also the military, and Gemini supports a high-tech military, on the go. Mars often means attack, and we are seeing surveillance systems which attack our civil liberties. (Saturn likes control, not liberty.)

When Saturn began its transit of U.S. Mars last July, Congress began hearings on the Homeland Security Act, which is now law. This is a Gemini granddaddy—accumulating an uncountable quantity of data, which includes personal information on everyone in the nation; collecting 22 agencies, foreign and domestic, into one big "intelligence" agency; creating the second largest department in the government, one which justifies its existence by fighting "enemies," and thus must continue to create "enemies." It even claims the legal power, and the technology, to see if people have had their required vaccinations. (How? Are chips embedded with the vaccinations?)

The Homeland Security Act is a triumph of Saturn in Gemini. So are the other government agencies which the Bush Administration is creating at a very rapid pace. Government bureaucracy is, in fact, associated with Gemini and with Saturn.

Within days of the Saturn transit of U.S. Mars, GW put out a huge propaganda campaign for fighting Iraq, and announced NORCOM, the new military command which combines the Mexico and Canada military with that of the U.S. The Senate then passed Fast Track, and that same day gave GW $320 billion for the military. (Fast Track means there will be no debate on the proposed super-NAFTA—the Free Trade Association of the Americas. Gemini is a trader.)

This then is the Saturn with which we are dealing this month, pumped with power by its recent rendezvous with Pluto. It’s a strong and imperious organizer of connections. In fact, Saturn and Pluto together represent the police.

With Saturn and Pluto in close opposition across the U.S. Ascendant-Descendant from the summer of 1991 until May 1992, the U.S. laid all the groundwork for a mammoth police state. Saturn and Pluto remain in wide opposition through May 2003, when part of a series of powerful eclipses will seal its work.

It’s also a retrograde Saturn. This means that the month’s building refers to things already in the works. There is review of plans, and perhaps rebuilding. There is much that is under attack now—by weather, by economic recession, by corporate corruption, by neglect, by underfunding, by lack of concern, and by the government. There is much to be rebuilt, including a number of ethical considerations. Building as preparation for the future can also accompany a retrograde Saturn.

Mercury dominates the month of January.

Mercury is the planet associated with Gemini. Mercury is the messenger with the winged helmet, circulating life as he carries messages to and fro. Mercury plays a major role this January.

Mercury, guide to perception, is traveling through the sign of the month, Capricorn. Furthermore, Mercury is traveling retrograde for most of the month. Capricorn’s action is slow and methodical; it must maintain control. Retrograde Mercury, also slow, is comfortable in Capricorn.

This will be, then, a slow-moving month. It is likely that widespread stormy weather will make life difficult. Power outages, such as we’ve been enduring here, will be common. The terrorism of going cold and hungry in the United States will increase. For those who can, stocking up on supplies is a good idea.

The U.S. government will be making its final preparations for war. All of the above speaks to a profoundly conservative combination. However…

In the meantime, we have Chiron also traveling through Capricorn.

Chiron brings changes to the carefully controlled Capricornian endeavors. They are often unexpected, and serve as doorways into a new reality. They can rock the establishment. For instance, Chiron in Capricorn is associated with the shining of light into corporate corruption, and with the exposing of sexual abuse by the Catholic clergy.

Mercury turns direct on January 22. During the days around that time, it slows down, or "stations," to make its turn. During those days a planet is particularly powerful. There is a spotlight on its affairs. Essentially, Mercury impels movement. In Capricorn the movement is of entrenched interests, including earth itself.

What is so special is that during those powerful days, Mercury conjoins Chiron, the Maverick. Chiron moves relatively slowly, and thus slowly stationing Mercury conjoins it for a whole week, from January 19-26. This is a one-of-a-kind historical occurrence. What surprises will this active pair bring us? They will relate to Ceres in Aries, who is currently nurturing armed forces around the world, as well as encouraging workers to feel feisty and to ask for fair treatment.

Chiron is a regular participant in new high-tech adventures. This Chiron-Mercury conjunction is opposite the U.S. Sun, meaning that the nation is undergoing a historic alteration of its reality that has to do with the very structure of its identity. High-tech war seems a likely tool for this identity realignment, especially since the natal U.S. Chiron is in Aries, the sign of battle.

However, Chiron’s action, like that of Uranus, is unpredictable. And we have no historical astrological precedents to guide us.

(Later: I now know what to expect with Chiron-Mercury. See the January 20 entry in the Daily Success Guide, which is when they first conjoin in January.)

January is a month of profound inner change.

Yes, movement will be slow and deliberate during much of January. However, it will be very deep, very significant, and life-changing. Instead of running around tending our lives, we can attend them in the deepest recesses of our souls.

There is another unusual aspect culminating in January. Uranus began opposing Transpluto about March 1, and has its final exact opposition from January 12-16. This is the midpoint of a cycle which began in 1957-58, when the first artificial satellites went into orbit, and NASA was established.

Theoretically, this aspect refers to the resurrection of technology. In fact, this year Uranus-Transpluto has primarily referred to the development and use of high-tech weapons and surveillance by the U.S. military. Many sustainable, helpful technologies are being developed, but unfortunately armaments manufacturers seem to have an iron grip on what technology is culturally supported at this time. Star Wars visions have saturated the ethers for many years, at least from the time of H.G Wells’ book, War of the Worlds, published in 1898.

Let us saturate the ethers with visions of honoring people, planet, and space!

At this very same time, and hooked to the Uranus-Transpluto climax, the U.S. begins a new four-year strategic cycle regarding the preparation of its people for the future.

January 2003 is very significant. The future is being born. It behooves all of us to work deeply with spirit during this vital Mercury retrograde time, to listen for guidance, and to visualize that better world which we want. With Capricorn, we can get much help from the Ancestors. With retrograde Mercury, we have the opportunity to make repairs and revisions.

The entire month of January supports profound inner change. Many of January’s processes began during the final days of December. Others began earlier, for instance in 1957-58, March 2002, May 2002, and September 2002, and many periods in between.

By February 1, we will have a new start in how we use our Neptunian energy. It is Neptune which connects all of life, and which provides our great reservoir of visions. It is also through Neptune that compassion flows, the knowledge that your pain is my pain. (Neptune also rules oil, which connects us to the solar energy of millions of years ago.)