I am not a mundane astrologer, one who studies worldly events. I am therefore hesitant to offer an historical perspective on what is happening now. If I’ve learned anything over my years of practicing astrology, it’s that things never work out how we think they will – there is always a twist – because we are co-creating our reality as it unfolds. All our thoughts and actions at this time will affect the outcome of the pandemic; the landscape is constantly changing.
That said, I’ve been asked for an astrological perspective by clients on what is happening now, and would like to offer a few thoughts at this uncertain time in our history. As you read this article, remember that your present thoughts and actions affect the outcome of the future.
We appear to be long overdue for a global crisis of this nature because it is acting as a cleansing force for things that have become out of balance. This in no way minimizes the suffering of those that are experiencing the health implications of the coronavirus first hand. May you find relief and help as soon as possible.
The virus itself is not truly at the center of what’s actually happening now and we need to be clear on this. What’s central is that the virus has acted as a catalyst for major global change. The effect of the international and local quarantines has altered life as we know it. By limiting the interaction and movement of people we are creating an economic slowdown and a profound alteration in the way we communicate as a species. Things will not be “business as usual” once a cure for the coronavirus has been found. Ponder on this.
How do you spend your time now that you have more to “spend”? How are you helping others with your vibration of peace at this time? Or are you fearful of the future? Are you listening to the news more than once a day? It’s really not necessary.
In January 2020 Saturn and Pluto, two major planetary players when it comes to the unfolding of world events, came together by conjunction at 22° Capricorn.
Whenever the two major players Saturn and Pluto get together it is always about the shift and redistribution of power. Control and authority (Saturn) meet power and perspective (Pluto). We can track this through history with previous conjunctions and opposition cycles of the same planets and recall how power shifted during these periods:
- 1914 (Europe’s national borders; end of Russian oligarchy and Ottoman Empire)
- 1931-2 (Saudi Arabia established, Great Depression; Japan invaded Manchuria)
- 1947 (post-war Europe; a weakened Germany/Japan giving rise to the USSR/USA giants; India, Pakistan and Israel established)
- 1965 (Vietnam War, power struggle between USSR/USA at its height; British Empire dissolving)
- 1982 (Saudi-US alliance, AIDS, recession; start of the collapse of the Soviet Empire)
- 2001 (polarization between the US/Arab nations; war on terrorism)
Saturn and Pluto in combination set the tone for the potential shifting of power structures and the exposition of corruption on earth. The coronavirus appears to be the catalyst which puts to the test the resources and integrity of the current power players.
Astrology of the Nodes
What makes this Saturn-Pluto conjunction particularly potent is that it occurred on the south nodes of both Pluto and Saturn – this is remarkable astronomically. The north and south nodes mark the intersection where a planet crosses the ecliptic – in other words, where the path of the planet and the path of the Sun intersect in space. As such, they signify the collective, something that is larger than any individual. Pluto’s planetary nodes are at 22° Cancer-Capricorn and Saturn’s south node currently ranges from 19°-29° of Capricorn.
With the January Saturn-Pluto conjunction taking place on the nodes, we know that the changes to come will be long-term and affect the world on a global scale. Political changes are inevitable, as is the potential for massive economic and spiritual upheaval. Both Saturn and Pluto are associated with karmic forces that are national in nature. The upheaval that we are all experiencing appears to be a necessary part of clearing out what no longer serves us.
The United States, 2009 – 2020
It is interesting to study the chart of the founding of the United States based on the signing of the Declaration of Independence (July 4, 1776 at 5:10 pm LMT, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania). This chart helps us to see an even broader perspective on the current coronavirus situation.
The Sibly chart, as it’s called, has Venus, Jupiter and the Sun in the sign of Cancer all under stress from transiting Pluto and transiting Saturn in Capricorn since 2009. This illustrates some of the major political shifts and divisions we have seen since this time. Furthermore, the United States Mercury at 24° Cancer is currently receiving this opposition transit from both Saturn and Pluto, illustrating a time of great stress and change, a time when new perspectives and undreamed of opportunities simultaneously unfold.
The United States, 2022 – 2024
Moreover, from 2022 – 2024 the USA will undergo her own Pluto return: when Pluto returns to the position of the zodiac it held in 1776. I am hopeful that this may signify a return to our original founding values as a nation. The current coronavirus pandemic appears to be a catalyst which is forcing government to reevaluate its role in the lives of its citizens and for wealthy plutocrats to reconsider their immense wealth. What is wealth worth if we cannot spend it? The sign of Capricorn indicates that in particular government structures, banking and natural resources will be the fundamental issues going forward. Let’s hope that the protection of our magnificent oceans, lakes and national parks will once again be a priority of government from 2024.
It is interesting to note that with everyone now forced to stay home, our carbon footprint is lower and the skies world-wide are beginning to clear of smog.
Current Eclipse Cycle
It also appears that the coronavirus may be linked to the current eclipse cycle. On December 26, 2019, we had a partial solar eclipse at 4° Capricorn with both the New Moon and the Sun conjunct Jupiter. Health officials in Wuhan became aware of the virus on December 27 (after the first patient felt ill on December 10). Note that Jupiter tends to expand everything it touches – the virus spread rapidly.
On Friday, January 10, 2020, we experienced a lunar eclipse at 20° Cancer, close to the 22° zone of the Saturn-Pluto conjunction. On this day, the virus genome was mapped (2019-nCoV, a virus from the same family as the SARS coronavirus) and posted to the Global Initiative on Sharing All Influenza Data. That same day Public Health England issued its guidance and Dr. Li Wenliang, the Chinese ophthalmologist and Covid-19 whistleblower, started having coronavirus symptoms.
When transiting Mars activated the same degree as the December solar eclipse (4 Capricorn) on February 22/23 the seriousness of the coronavirus made itself felt: Liaoning adjusted its COVID-19 emergency response level from level 1 to level 3 and Wuhan required a 14-day quarantine for patients discharged from COVID-19.
When transiting Jupiter activated the same degree as the January lunar eclipse (20 Capricorn) from March 4 – 10, Poland and Slovenia confirmed their first cases while confirmed cases in the USA jumped from 159 to 1,000. That week the virus spread exponentially throughout the world, reports flooding in to the World Health Organization. When transiting Mars activated the same degree, 20° Capricorn, on March 16/17 the coronavirus seemed overwhelming. Countries that appeared to have escaped its influence, such as Benin, Barbados and Somalia, reported their first cases.
Due to its retrograde cycle, transiting Jupiter will again be at 20° Capricorn between July 24 and August 2, and again from October 25 – 31. Transiting Mars will square this sensitive degree on August 6 -7. These will be important time periods to watch with regards to the containment (and hopefully denouement) of the coronavirus.
Mars in Aries 2020
Remember that there are, of course, other cycles going on at this time in our history. The small cycle of transiting Mars, as noted above, will become more pronounced than usual during the second part of 2020 due to its retrograde motion. While Mars usually spends approximately one month in a sign, it will be in Aries, the sign it rules, from June 29, 2020 all the way until January 7, 2021. It is said that in Aries, Mars is belligerent and likes to stir up trouble! Mars will activate the Saturn-Pluto conjunction (22° Capricorn) on August 9 – 12, October 7 – 10, and December 19 – 22; let’s see what plays out on the world stage during these dates.
We have also previously touched on here the Jupiter-Saturn conjunction in Aquarius which ushers in the start of a 20-year period (beginning December 2020) where we value ideas, technology and group consciousness more than material goods and physical borders. We are already seeing the effects of this.
Jupiter and Pluto will be conjunct in April, June and November 2020, bringing us the energy and will to establish new perspectives and expand our horizons beyond our normal way of thinking. The final conjunction of November 12 will be particularly noteworthy as it occurs at 22° Capricorn, activating the Saturn-Pluto conjunction once again. Events related to the coronavirus and its effects will no doubt come sharply into focus during this week once again.
Astrology is so helpful because it helps us to see that every cycle has a beginning, a middle, and an end. It appears that the coronavirus is part of a much larger national and global realignment talking place at this point in history. What of the balance of power within and between Europe, China, the Middle East, Russia and the United States? What of daily life and how we do business locally and internationally? What of borders and technology? How will life look in 2025 when another new cycle begins? In many ways, it’s up to us.
Perhaps the coronavirus is the opportunity we’ve been gifted with to help us to reconnect with our true values. Planetary patterns ask us to be accountable to ourselves, our families and our communities like never before.
An extract from my year ahead article, written in December 2019:
In January 2020 we have the Saturn-Pluto conjunction at 22° Capricorn. This is a long-term, far-ranging aspect that we’ve been feeling for a while now, and will continue to experience into 2020. Control and authority (Saturn) meets power and perspective (Pluto). When these two planets get together we cannot help but think of big government and hegemony – and the realignment of power. At the same time, 2020 shows great potential for the development of the positive side of group consciousness facilitated by social media, as symbolized by the great Saturn-Jupiter conjunction in Aquarius at the end of the year.
Wherever we turn, we seem to be confronted with the theme of ACCOUNTABILITY. Are we accountable to ourselves and to those who depend on us? This year appears to be about seeing through artificial authority figures, divesting them of their power, and taking charge of our own lives. This can only happen on the individual level: one person at a time.
It is said that if one person profoundly realizes that they are responsible for their actions, and alters their behavior accordingly, an enormous cosmic shift can take place. With Mercury, the planet of the mind, joining in the Saturn-Pluto dance, the cosmos is telling us just how powerful our mindset is at this time. Everything depends on how you look at it and how you choose to communicate.