This is an especially potent and powerful Full Moon which is occurring at an extraordinary moment in time. This Moon peaks only 2 days before the much anticipated Saturn/Pluto conjunction is at its strongest on Sunday 12 January. The energy of the conjunction has been building over the past month and will continue after the 12th, although its strength will recede with each day afterwards. It is also Eclipse season, which has the potential to bring a new chapter and a significant shift of some kind. This is the second of the two Eclipses in the signs of Cancer and Capricorn, the parental axis. Cancer is the mother, the Matriarchy, while Capricorn is the father, the Patriarchy. The Moon is very much at home in her own sign of Cancer, so this Moon could have a particularly strong emotional, nurturing quality, helping us to access our emotions and truly express what we are feeling. However, it is very important to note that there is a HUGE emphasis on Capricorn at the moment, with 6 astrological bodies sitting in this ambitious, reserved and authoritative sign. As such, we are staring Capricorn squarely in the face at the moment, which enables us to see and experience both its darkness and light.
With the North Node currently in Cancer we are being encouraged to develop our Cancerian qualities and focus more on taking care of one another and nurturing community spirit and grass root endeavours. Cancer encourages us to allow ourselves to be more vulnerable, finding the courage to ask for help, revealing our real emotions and sharing our fears and insecurities rather than any Capricornian fear-based tendency towards emotional coldness, putting up walls, stiff upper lip, emotional withdrawal, shutting one another out and acting like we have everything under control. Capricorn is the part of us that has been taught to suppress and keep our emotions under control, stuffing them down so we don’t feel, while Cancer helps us to access and honour them and recognise the needs of our “inner child” and what it is telling us. It is very important, at this time, to actively and consciously work on this, keeping our hearts open to one another and recognising when our old Capricornian conditioning is running the show. It takes considerable courage, trust and effort to remain open instead of closing down, but it makes all the difference in the world if we can do so.
With Saturn and Pluto joining forces in Capricorn we are currently being shown the dark side of Capricorn, in no uncertain terms, both in our personal lives and on the world stage. We are at tipping point. Issues around hard control, patriarchal dominance, suppression, repression, oppression, governmental structures, dictatorship, power, status, greed, intolerance, borders and boundaries, judgement, extreme conservatism, divide and rule, fear-based control, exclusivity, tyranny, prejudice and nepotism are rife at the moment. While the light side of Capricorn has very strict morals and seeks to obey the rules, the shadow side of Capricorn and the patriarchal system will do anything in order to gain and maintain control, status and power. We are seeing evidence of this wherever we turn at the moment. Fear is rife and can easily be used to control. It is very important for us to recognise when we are feeling fearful, as it is a very destructive force.
Pluto exposes the rot, while Saturn gives us a very harsh reality check, and so the darker side of Capricorn is being shown to us, without any kind of softening filter. Historically, when these two powerful planets come together there has been some kind of war or threat of war. Pluto is a powerfully transforming planet which has the potential to bring the dark side of the system and power structures to light and detoxify them so that something new can rise up in their place. However, Saturn’s energy may resist this process and cling on for dear life. An old order is passing away so that something new can be born, but it won’t go down without a fight! This applies both personally and collectively. It is better to allow whatever structures, patterns or habits in our lives that or old and outworn to pass away rather than holding onto something that simply isn’t working anymore.
Both personally and collectively we are no longer able to live in denial of the reality of what we are facing. Possibly nothing has actually changed, rather we are facing the stark reality and being forced to see things as they really are. This is extremely helpful, for then we are better able to take responsibility for and become more accountable for whatever we find. Pluto can help us to empower ourselves and really get to the bottom of whatever it is that we are confronted with, leaving no stone unturned! Saturn in Capricorn helps us to slowly and steadily climb to the top of whatever mountain we are facing, helping us to harness the necessary discipline, patience, integrity and resilience and to keep our sights on whatever goal we have set ourselves. The key is to take responsibility for ourselves, to recognise where and how we can empower ourselves and each other, to act with maturity and to knuckle down and do whatever work is necessary, both internally and externally, in order to move past whatever obstacles arise. We may be asked to make a deeper commitment in whatever area of life that the conjunction is found.
At the moment when the Saturn Pluto conjunction is exact on the 12th we also have the Sun, Mercury and Ceres sitting right next to these two powerful planets, giving us a five planet stellium in Capricorn. The Sun, Ceres, Saturn and Pluto are sitting at 22° Capricorn, while Mercury is one degree ahead at 23° Capricorn. This is incredibly powerful! With the Sun involved this powerful stellium has the potential to bring into question our very purpose in life and how we express ourselves in the world.
Mercury’s involvement means that it is important to be careful what we say during this time and mindful in terms of what we hear or listen to, as it could be extreme. Mercury in Capricorn can be quite hard-nosed and deliver some harsh blows, not to mention forcing us to confront reality and potentially making us a bit rigid in our thinking. Mercury is the planet of communication, and combined with Saturn and Pluto and opposing the Moon we could either give or receive some messages that are psychologically hard to stomach but which may hit the nail on the head somehow. Indeed, we could have some profound psychological realisations about how things really are! It is important to watch out for power games, mind control, manipulation and conflicts of opinion. During the Full Moon and leading up to the conjunction, some very big decisions may need to be made that could have a far-reaching impact on our lives, both personally and collectively. It is very important to be mindful in thought and deed, and to take a step back if we feel upset or over-heated. The Cancer Moon and North Node remind us to remain open to one another rather than withdrawing communication or putting the walls up.
Ceres, sometimes known as Mother Earth, is the goddess of food and agriculture and represents the way we give and receive nurturing. Ceres (otherwise known as Demeter) was mother to Persephone, who Pluto took a fancy to and took her away from her Mother to live with him in the underworld. It seems that Ceres could be quite a controlling, smothering, somewhat narcissistic mother, so on some level it may have been quite a relief for Persephone to have some time away from her to become her own person. Ceres’ grief was so severe at the separation from her daughter that in her agony and mourning she stopped the crops growing, so much so that after a year the human race was in dire straits and in danger of extinction. The humans started to lose faith in the Gods, so Jupiter intervened and decreed that Persephone would spend half the year in the underworld with Pluto and the other half in the company of Ceres. This is how Summer and Winter were created, for when Persephone went underground Ceres went into mourning.
With Ceres being so closely tied in with the Saturn Pluto conjunction, we are receiving a heavy dose of reality in the areas of life that she represents. Ceres represents the mother daughter bond and/or lack of it, highlighting issues around control and the need to break free. She also represents the ancestral inheritance and genes we receive through the maternal line. She represents agriculture, food supplies and lack of it. Ceres has a correlation with the overall well-being of ordinary people, and is a very important symbol of the spirit and practice of democracy. She represents deep loss, grief, separation, death of a loved one and bereavement. She also represents the natural cycles of life, both in the seasons and in the cycle of birth, life and death, the Maiden, the Mother and the Crone. Her story points out that Persephone actually didn’t mind being with Pluto in the underworld, which could help us to see our own shadows and “underworld” in a different light. These are all issues that are being highlighted and brought to our attention at the moment, especially as Pluto himself is involved with this conjunction!
We are currently being asked to really step up to the plate and become accountable for whatever we are facing in our lives. And some of this is not easy material to face. We could be faced with some very big decisions, as we are asked somehow to make a deeper commitment as a new chapter begins. It is Eclipse season, which is a profound time of endings and beginnings and signifies a big shift in consciousness. The Moon/Eclipse could definitely bring things to a head for us emotionally and within our relationships, which ultimately could be exactly what we need, as challenging as it may seem at the time. Saturn and Pluto are forcing us to recognise things as they really are, not as we would like them to be. There is the potential for darkness here, but it is important to remember that there is no shadow without equal amounts of light. In fact, the brighter the light shines the darker the shadow seems in comparison. It is very important to be mindful, conscious and aware of our actions and reactions during this period of time, especially in the face of adversity.
It does indeed feel like we are at tipping point, on many levels; a karmic time of reckoning, when we reap what we have sown. It’s Judgement day! Old, entrenched patterns and our “armour” are being broken down and the process could be painful. How we respond to it all, however, is the most important thing. The Cancer North Node and Moon asks us to keep our hearts open and to honour our emotions rather than stuffing them down and shutting each other out. And if we can take anything from Capricorn, it is to always act from a place of maturity and integrity. Choose love, not fear.
Image: Inner Child sculpture from Burning Man