Happy New Zodiacal Year!


As of this past Sunday, the Sun has crossed the cusp from Pisces to Aries and begun another new cycle through the zodiac wheel… and along with it, the outwardly stagnant or draggy pace of the past week or two gives way to a few weeks of more speeded-up movement.

Wait, were these past several days actually stagnant or draggy? Or was the energy, wetted down with Pisces's misty moisture, merely ripe for anticipatory incubation?

After all, Mercury's been in Aries, the sign of fiery firsts, since Fri Mar 7, so our mental processes were already being freshened up, shaken and stirred. It's just the rest of our bodies and ourselves weren't quite set to enact these 'next great ideas'. For the past month and a half, Mars has dwelled in Capricorn, where every act is carefully engineered to ensure the desired result, sometimes at the expense of creative spontaneity. Meanwhile, the Piscean effect has shrouded obvious progress in the cloud of sensitivity's seeming standstill. This past week, as both the Sun and Venus wrapped up their visit to Pisces, they made squares to Pluto, gently pushing up blockages in self-conception and relational attitude (reminiscent of the mightier push that came back in January when Mars conjoined Pluto) to forge an even clearer path for what will begin now.

As of this week, so much (everything?) is different.

First off, as I so goofily dramatized last week, Mercury is now retrograde in Aries, where it will continue to move backwards (from our vantage point, that is) and behave brattily through Apr 12. Here is where I could insert the stereotypical caution against scrambled exchanges, missing messages, roadblocks, backfires and other such annoyances, and then try to convince you to slow down. But hey, it's Aries we're talking about—there's little we can do to stop each other from proceeding with (attempted) delivery exactly as we each individually desire. At least don't let the unforeseen delays or uncontrollable circumstances make you too mad. Aries is quick to react in anger… and what you do to try to remedy the situation will likely make it worse than if you just heaved a heavy sigh and held tight.

The Aries influence continues with Venus's entry on Tuesday, where she joins Mercury and the Sun to form a trifecta of triple-action excitement in the sign that gets things going. The addition of Venus in Aries generates genuine cravings in us to confront the world head on, attracting contacts with people and things that initiate and incite and spur creative innovation. Aries symbolism draws from its link with the swift start to spring that occurs (in the northern hemisphere, at least) when the Sun is in its sign—think birds chirping, bees buzzing, cats in heat, and buds that, all of a sudden in the course of a single morning, open into bright pink and yellow flowers. Pow! a burst of color! Fertility abounds…

Mars, meanwhile, adjusts to a sign change of his own, having zoomed into Aquarius last Sunday to stay through the end of April. As the ruling planet of Aries, what Mars does while all the Aries action is going down is of paramount importance. Mars in Aquarius packs physical drive into our urges to be different, to snub the status quo and go off on our own, reflecting a basic respect for human individuality in all its kinds. In its current position, Mars gets along quite well with the Aries planets, enhancing the fresh-new-action orientation with a dose of radical unorthodoxy and authentic concern for the good of the whole. Throw in this week's conjunction of Mars with Chiron, newly in Aquarius for a 5-year mending of the rips in the social fabric, and we have a wonderful chance to make our reinvigorated efforts matter on a bigger scale.

Remember that glibly worn-out call to activism 'Think globally, act locally'? Well, the current astrology is echoing its message with this dynamic combo of personal planets in Aries and Mars/Chiron in Aquarius. Rephrased: To bring us all together, to change the world for the better and the more loving… do your own part, in small self-contained steps that bust through your own fear and hurt, and keep it all moving forward instead of worrying about and overprocessing the what-ifs. Act, don't react. Practice, don't preach.

Friday's Full Moon in Libra makes a happy trine to Mars/Chiron, echoing the ongoing trine between Jupiter and Neptune in these same two air signs and reinforcing the need to revere the unspoken terms of the social contract. The more we do in and for ourselves, the greater our awareness must be of how we affect others around us. Hear ye, hear ye… it is not personal progress if it comes at the expense of others' well-being. On the same token, brilliant expressions of compassion can be born from actions of loving self-centeredness—once we know and empower ourselves, excise the unconscious techniques we use to obstruct our highest intentions with self-sabotage, we can be more present to serve our fellow Earth-dwellers.

In case what I've reported isn't quite enough to whet your appetite for something new, I'll leave you with a taste of what's to come… a vibe already in the air for those receptive enough to feel it. This week's Full Moon marks the final two weeks before the next solar eclipse, which falls on the next New Moon in Aries on Apr 8. Eclipses, which I consider to be astrological 'chapter-markers' that split the narrative of our lives into more easily digestible six-month chunks, often begin to make their energies known a few weeks in advance of their actual occurrence. This chapter that began back in Oct 04 is coming to an end, and something new is sparking up. If you can't sense it now, you'll know what I mean soon enough…