- Amanda Painter
Here we are in a new year, with our intentions, resolutions and reflections gathered and declared in hopes of guiding the next 12 months. Or perhaps you’ve been too busy this holiday season to do much reflecting, intention setting and resolution declaring. That’s okay; if you follow the rhythms of astrology, you know that they only occasionally match up with the civil calendar.
As it happens, the Capricorn New Moon is this Saturday at 8:30 pm EST. A conjunction of the Sun and Moon, this is one of astrology’s very regular (approximately monthly) moments that correlates with inward reflection, bringing projects to completion, perhaps a sense of lower or slower energy, and then beginning a new phase.
What’s striking about this New Moon is the way three other planetary objects are clustered around the Sun and Moon in Capricorn. Just a little earlier in the sign is Pluto; a little later in Cap are the asteroid Pallas and retrograde Mercury. They’re spread out a little too far to properly call this a five-way conjunction, yet they’re still clustered just enough to evoke an image with a message.
Capricorn is the sign of business, ambition and leadership. Despite the ambition/leadership qualities, it also has strong associations with tradition, the past and established structures.
One thought that crossed my mind as I looked at the configuration was the image of a business meeting: board members or executives gathered to review and assess the state of the company’s foundation, and strategize what needs to change as they lead it forward.
That might not be an image you feel like you can relate to, but let’s try putting it in more personal terms. Another way to phrase it might be that you can use the inward, intellectual focus of Mercury retrograde and this New Moon to plan how to best evolve your leadership abilities in some facet of your everyday life. Perhaps, in the process, you may even reinvent the structures or institutions in which you take the lead.
I know; that last bit might sound way too ambitious. If you feel like just a cog in the proverbial machine, or like your life is too embedded in and subject to forces far greater (and more authoritative) than you are, how can what you do possibly reinvent the environments you live, work and relate in? Actually, the better question is, how can your actions not have an effect?
You don’t have to get all caught up in the Butterfly Effect; this is not about flapping your wings and creating a tsunami on the other side of the world. But it is about recognizing that any change you make to yourself, your immediate environment, your relationships, how you communicate, how you feel about these things, or your perspective is going to ripple out, even if just a little. When you take the lead in your life, even in small or internal ways, shifts occur around you in response.
It doesn’t need to be an intimidating prospect. Yes, we have Pluto in the mix in Capricorn, which means the Sun and Moon are passing through the still-effective Uranus-Pluto square. I know people get scared of Pluto. But what I see here is that whatever you’re putting energy into between now and the New Moon is connected to significant processes and events stretching over the last 3-4 years. You’re already in that flow; this New Moon is merely making it a little more personal, maybe a little more tangible, and it’s giving you a point of contact and reference.
Another thing: retrograde Mercury is moving into a conjunction with asteroid Pallas right nearby. Remember that board meeting image? You’re not alone in this. In fact, if you try, I’m sure you can think of at least one person you could ask to help you strategize. What do you need to review related to the Capricorn themes or your life’s changes of the last few years (or just last year)? What does your foundation actually look like, and what steps do you need to take to connect that foundation with your ambitions?
Eric Francis mentioned in conversation that Mercury-Pallas brings to mind the strategist/lawyer/advisor. You might not need to shell out for a lawyer or a professional consultant (though if you feel called to, try to use Mercury retrograde -- which lasts until Jan. 25 -- for your research phase). A mentor or simply someone with more life experience could prove to be a valuable resource. Ask lots of questions.
Along with the New Moon, Venus conjunct Saturn is emphasizing some practicality as you set your sights. It also carries a reminder not to forget affection, compassion and humanitarianism this week, since Saturn tends to restrain or inhibit Venus (though in Sagittarius, Venus wields great optimism).
You have not missed your chance to start 2016 with deeper awareness or vision. In fact, astrology offers opportunities for such quite regularly. What will you do with this one?