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Highlights for Dec. 27, 2021- Jan. 2, 2022: More, Better, Bigger

More, better, bigger

Dates and times are given for U.S. Pacific Time zone.

Joyful sanctuary

Back in May, Jupiter entered Pisces for a sneak preview before turning retrograde in June and backing into Aquarius on July 28. This week, he’ll get his feet good and wet as he plunges back into Pisces (Dec. 28, 2021, 8:10 pm PST) for a longer stay, through May 10, 2022.

Jupiter announces his entrance into a new sign – and a new area of your birth chart – by bellowing, “More!” More, better, bigger – these are some of Jupiter’s favorite words. In Pisces, one of the signs of its rulership, what does Jupiter want more of? Well, more meaning, for one thing. Look to the Pisces house of your birth chart to find your sanctuary, the areas in which you seek union with the divine – and with Jupiter here, you’ll throw yourself into it with joyful abandon.

Jupiter in Pisces can also trigger our escapist tendencies, and each of us knows what ours are – alcohol, drugs, food, sex, books and movies, sleep, exercise, whatever. One way to manage Jupiter as it zig-zags through Pisces is to take periodic, preemptive breaks from the world. Plan a retreat. Schedule a meditative meeting with Jupiter each Thursday (the day sacred to Jupiter), in the bathtub if necessary. In short, this is a transit for reestablishing a joyous sense of spiritual purpose. (Jupiter will be in Pisces from Dec. 28, 2021-May 10, 2022; Oct. 27-Dec. 20, 2022.)

Deploy a Strategy

This is the time of the year when I love to crack out all my calendars and planners and plot out my objectives for the coming calendar year. It’s one of my favorite things to do and my idea of a large time between Christmas and New Year.

If you find it a little more of a struggle to formulate and deploy a strategy, this week offers a little help, courtesy of Mars sextile Saturn (Dec. 29, 2021). With Mars in enthusiastic Sagittarius and Saturn in innovative Aquarius, it’s just a little easier than usual to outline a plan for how best to use your gifts and mental acuity, and tap into your network to help you get where you’re trying to go. But remember: the sextile is an aspect that rewards you, but only if you make a bit of an effort.


That Venus/Pluto conjunction on Christmas Day was an opportunity to look under the tree, open your gifts, and consider, “How good does this gift feel? Is this more than my loved one could afford to spend on this? Is it purchased with a deep knowledge of me in mind? Or is it just something they grabbed off a shelf?”

Together, Venus and Pluto are helping us reevaluate what’s true in our relationships and valuable in our lives. Venus wants what’s pleasurable, and Pluto shows us whether or not it’s right for us, and what it will actually mean for us if we get it. This week, as Mercury makes conjunctions with first Venus (Dec. 29, 2:27 am PST) and then Pluto (Dec. 30, 1:53 am PST), it translates for these very odd planetary bedfellows.

Mercury is the tiny voice that suggests to Venus, “Maybe you should think twice about that person or thing or situation that you passionately desire, that Pluto is trying to warn you about.” And at the same time, Mercury advises Pluto to stop being a killjoy at all times, and just let us enjoy a little bit of Venus.

The Unexpected Guest

On the first day of the year, Mercury enters Aquarius (Jan. 1, 11:10 pm PST) for what will be a protracted journey (including a retrograde period between Jan. 14 and Feb. 4). In his book, “Sidewalk Oracles: Playing with Signs, Symbols, and Synchronicity in Everyday Life,” author Robert Moss offers a number of creative exercises for inviting meaningful coincidence and symbolic illumination into your life. Here’s how to play the “Unexpected Guest” game, perfect for Mercury in surprising Aquarius:

Visualize yourself inside your home when the bell rings or there is a knock at the door, and then see who or what has arrived; this is the Unexpected Guest. It might be a feeling, a person, or a concept. Name it, picture it, and examine your response to this unexpected guest. Moss assures the reader that you are not required to allow just anyone or anything inside your home – if it’s an unwelcome or even threatening guest, you can choose to leave them on the porch, or perhaps in a waiting room – but you have to deal with it in some way.

As in dreams and meditations, the waking world speaks to us in unexpected ways, in symbols and vague impressions. It takes some practice, and a little patience, to learn to read its signs and signals. Sometimes it’s not until we begin to describe a dream, or write a description of an “unexpected guest,” that the message becomes clear.

Mercury, the sign of messages and communication, is considered especially strong in Aquarius. Mercury symbolizes the stories we tell to ourselves and to others; in Aquarius, the sign of broadcasting, it’s the ability to share messages and global events with millions of people simultaneously. If it seems far too mystical to imagine the world is throwing symbols and synchronicity in your path with intent and purpose, consider how magical and revolutionary radio, telegraph, and telephone were in their infancy. Imagine, transmitting messages through space! Mercury in Aquarius reminds us that we are in and of the world, and it is communicating with us all the time. We just have to learn to tune in to its frequency.

A New Year Awakens

Just over the threshold of the new year lies a New Moon at 12°20’ Capricorn (Jan. 2, 2022, 10:33 am PST). Regardless of what the calendar says, the Capricorn New Moon is the best time for making resolutions, or at least plans. And not just for 2022; each New Moon begins a new Lunar Phase Gestation cycle that unfolds over two and a half years – which is plenty of time to do important things.

In this New Moon chart, the Sun and Moon are both trine Uranus, the planet of awakening. This combination is promising for reworking old patterns and giving ourselves over to new inspiration and change. We don’t often think of Capricorn as change-oriented, but the New Moon and Uranus connecting in earth signs, indicates that on a real, quantifiable level, we can make actual changes in the new year.

Throughout 2021, squares between Saturn and Uranus reflected challenges to old ways and institutions, and invitations to build new, more innovative ones. While the last of their exact aspects has finished, they remain close enough throughout 2022 to reach a final near-square in October. Society hasn’t resolved its differences. But this New Moon is an opportunity to review how we’re reconciling the conflict between order and chaos within ourselves, and how that conflict can motivate us to move in new and productive directions.

Writing and collages © 2020-22 April Elliott Kent

Jen and I explore all the week’s highlights in our latest podcast episode! (This week begins about 16:16)

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