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Highlights for Feb. 28-March 6, 2022: Sky People, Plutification, and the Future

Sky People, Plutification, and the Future

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

Sky People, Earthly Outlaws

Last week, when Mercury squared Uranus, the mind opened to new possibilities. Now, as the Sun sextiles Uranus (March 1, 2022, 9:05 pm PST), comes another realization about how much one’s personal identity is open to reinterpretation.

There are, as Saturn is quick to point out, limits to what we can become. I’m 60 years old, quite fat, and none too bendy; “Olympic gymnast” is a door that’s firmly closed to me.

But not all of Saturn’s rules are so inexorable. Some are self-imposed and meant to keep us safe from harm or disappointment. Uranus is the god of the big sky, and as the Sun connects with it, we imagine who we might be if these self-imposed walls were knocked down.

Uranus awakens us to our uncivilized, lawless selves. When a planet touches Uranus in a hard aspect, a conjunction or a square or opposition, meeting this inner outlaw can come as a shock.

But the sextile is a gentler awakening. We can change without flipping our whole life upside down. The alarm on the phone is set on vibrate, but we still get the wakeup call and a reminder: We’re sky people, earthly outlaws, and we can break out of Saturn’s prison whenever we choose.

The Sword and the Peace

Each New Moon initiates a cycle that unfolds in three parts. First is the 28-day cycle from one New Moon to the next, when a new impulse or idea is conceived. Next is the roughly six-month period between that New Moon and the next Full Moon in the same sign; here, the true shape of that idea is revealed. And finally, a two-and-a-half year period called the lunar gestation cycle, when, at 9-month intervals, a New Moon’s degree and sign is echoed in  First Quarter, Full Moon, and Last Quarter Moon phases, and its promise emerges fully-formed.

And so, each New Moon is the beginning of a larger pattern than just a single month’s phases. Consider this week’s New Moon in Pisces (March 2, 2022, 9:35 am PST, 12.06 Pisces), the sign of faith, healing, and empathetic oneness. The Sabian Symbol for its degree, 13 Pisces is, A sword in a museum. This New Moon chart contains the coming convergence of Venus, Mars, and Pluto, and we may begin this lunar cycle contemplating old battles, conflicts so important that the sword that fought them is enshrined and venerated. But in the coming month, six months, and two-and-a-half years, the Pisces seed that we’re nurturing will grow to reveal something important – not about the sword, but about the peace that was or wasn’t won by it.

Expanding the Heart’s Reach

Once each year, the Sun comes together in a conjunction with Jupiter (March 5, 2022, 6:06 am PST) and we ask: Are we dreaming big enough for ourselves? The sign of the conjunction describes the nature of this self-examination. Last year, that sign was Aquarius, with lofty goals of contributing something of long-term value to humanity. This year, the conjunction is in Pisces. Venus and Mars entering Aquarius on the same day will take care of the Aquarian view of the future. But how well are we doing at mastering Pisces’ loving, empathetic inclusivity?

Pisces symbolizes the part of us that transcends earthly ambitions and concerns, the part that is eternal. When we talk about how we wish to be remembered after we die, and the regrets of the dying in their final hours, this, too, is Pisces territory; the wish to be remembered for how we touched hearts, improved lives, and prioritized connections. Is this part of your life big enough? How can you expand your heart’s reach?

Purification, Plutification

I’ll never forget something my luminous colleague, Michelle Gould, once said in a lecture. She suggested that Venus’ aspect with Pluto “burned away anything that didn’t look like love.” I was reminded of this often during Venus’ last two conjunctions with Pluto, on Dec. 11 and 25, 2021. What I heard from clients, and saw in my own life, was that it was a tough time for relationships that were on life support.

This week, we complete that Venus-Pluto sequence with a final conjunction (March 3, 2022, 9:56 am PST). Interpersonal struggles reach their denouement. And if strained relationships are going to arise from Pluto’s ashes in a new, stronger form, now is the time.

This moment coincides with Mars’ conjunction with Pluto earlier the same day (March 3, 2021, 0:43 am PST). I suppose we could use the same logic and imagine that Pluto will burn away anything that doesn’t look like Mars’ most noble purposes – motivation, protection, survival of the self and the species.

But when Mars goes wrong, it isn’t pretty. Toxic Mars bullies, provokes, wages war, steals resources. As he comes together with Pluto for the last time in Capricorn, it’s a good time to contemplate how Pluto has been purifying us, tempering our Mars impulses, so we can move forward into nobler battles.

Conceiving the Future

Fresh from their conjunctions with Pluto, Venus and Mars enter Aquarius within seven minutes of one another (Mars on March 5, 10:23 pm PST; Venus at 10:30 pm PST), then make a conjunction less than an hour later (11:12 pm PST), at 0 deg. 01 minutes of Aquarius.

Conjunctions of Venus and Mars symbolize the ecstatic union that may lead to conception. This one comes together at the degree of the Great Conjunction of Jupiter and Saturn, in December 2020. Remember its beauty in the evening sky, your excited neighbors spilling out into the street with binoculars to get a glimpse?

That conjunction, in the first degree of Aquarius, seemed to promise a new Aquarian era of collective action, a society building toward a brilliant and revolutionary future.

But conjunctions are like the New Moon, dark times with the stirring of great energy and promise but not much clarity. And what followed in 2021 was the rowdy, messy, chaotic striving toward a new vision.

But maybe this particular Venus/Mars conjunction, the first in Aquarius since Dec. 1997, marks a moment to conceive the earthly manifestation of that vision. We may not be able to recognize the fruits of this moment until the Jupiter/Saturn sextile in June 2023, or maybe as Pluto makes its first ingress into Aquarius in April 2023. But what we’re conceiving this week is connected to the Great Conjunction, and it’s more consequential than it may seem.

Writing and collages © 2019-2024 April Elliott Kent

Hear more about this week’s planetary happenings on my podcast!

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