Historical planetary shifts unfolding: December 2022 and January 2023 Astrology

A shorter version of this article was published by the Uki Village News, issue 127

DECEMBER 2022

This month is not just the close of another year but also the completion of the difficult 90 degree angle between Aquarius Saturn and Taurus Uranus, active since 2021. The November 8 Total Lunar Eclipse in Taurus, aligned by conjunction to Uranus and by square to Saturn, has intensified and prolonged the effect. The whole configuration has in fact generated extreme tension between the urge to progress and embrace evolutionary changes and the need to maintain a sense of permanency and the safe foundations we have relied upon for a long time, in our personal lives as well as our collective experience. 

For many this transit has signified having to move away from their comfort zone, further away perhaps that they may have envisioned possible. For others the change may have come as bewildering but otherwise positive developments, causing rapid psychological advancements, even epiphanies, brought about perhaps by unusual circumstances or encounters. The end results of this long lasting influence will become more obvious early next year, in ways that perhaps we didn’t see coming.

December and January will also be the forerunners not only of a new year but of imminent cosmic shifts destined to affect all our lives in 2023 and beyond. 

MARS RETRO

Until Mars continues its backward appearance (until January 13) the progressive effect of other transits (in particular the expansive effect of Jupiter returning to Aries) may seem to stall, forcing us to go over again old terrains we thought we have covered. Forward action may be held in check for a while, but there are visible openings, especially when the next Mercury’s retro period in Capricorn will also end (December29-January19). The Mutable Signs will be the most obviously affected by this transit (Gemini/Sagittarius-Pisces/Virgo).  Not only this retrogradation will keep Mars in Gemini for nearly five months (from October 30, 2022), but Mars will also be out of bounds’ (exceeding the Sun’s north declination), operating like a maverick, in unpredictable ways. A recurring square angle from Mars to Neptune in Pisces calls for extra caution too, to avoid falling into make believe traps that could bog you down for a while (last pass on March 15, 2023).

JUPITER RETURN TO ARIES

Just in time for Christmas, school and work holidays, on December 21, Jupiter will enter Aries and transit there until May 16 2023. This transit represents a four and half months window of opportunity to embrace a more optimistic, confident, forward looking mind set, encouraging energetic, enterprising, even militant perspectives, particularly in the Fire/Air Signs (Aries-Leo-Sagittarius-Libra-Aquarius-Gemini) and the other Cardinal Signs (Libra-Capricorn/Cancer). 

The time will be right to take decisive initiative and to make bold choices, putting into actions matters we had to keep on the back burner for a long time. Driven by faith and vision in better things to come we can sweep aside difficulties that might have seem insurmountable earlier. For many it could mean also to take a courageous stand to fight for what they believe in.

MERCURY RETRO

Mercury will retrograde in Capricorn (24°-08°) from December 29 to January 19. It could be advisable to postpone serious New Year’s resolutions until after the retro effect has passed. People more directly affected will be the Cardinal Signs (Capricorn-Cancer-Libra-Aries), having to revisit practical matters and commitments that may not be as solid as they thought they were. These are only temporary glitches however and, positively, they will urge you to be more conscientious and methodical when dealing with important practical matters next time.

SATURN INGRESS INTO PISCES

Now direct and gaining speed Saturn will cover five degrees of Aquarius during December and January (20°-26°). The ringed planets is in fact preparing to leave Aquarius (February 7, 2023) to begin its nearly three years transit through the Water Sign of Pisces. The whole transit will last until May 24, 2025; then return between September 2025 and mid-February 2026,  the cycle ending with the historical conjunction to Neptune on the threshold of Aries (February/March 2026), another game changer, like the alignments of 2020 have been (Jupiter-Saturn-Pluto).  

Saturn is the most solid of all the planets, intent at growing roots, establishing rules and limits, helping us to deal successfully with the practical demands of life. Saturn will find itself in a strange environment in the inconstant, emotionally receptive waters of Pisces, the least firmly anchored Sign of the whole Zodiac! How the world is going to deal with it this time around?

Saturn’s transit through the last zodiacal Sign marks, I feel, the end of an era on so many fronts, from down to earth experiences of the world to our collective spiritual path. Would we put our ability to build and make secure on less materialistic foundations? Or would we be swamped by escapism and make believe, becoming victims of our own blundering?

Aquarius and Pisces, last two Signs in the cycle, in a world-based astrology, represent our evolutionary struggles as a collective,  entire cultures, Eco-systems etc, toward progressive thinking (Aquarius) and spiritual realization/redemption (Pisces). All the way to the end of 2025 the opportunity is here to take responsibilities and work for the benefit of a wider world than our own private, egocentric domain. Could we as a collective meet the challenge of chaos and misinformation with disciplined minds and facts-based perspectives? I hope we will.

In my view, to all of us Saturn in Pisces will not be a care free period. Pisces, as the last Sign, encapsulates in fact collective and individual karma accumulated in the last thirty years, now materializing in our lives, mostly past our ability to control. 

PLUTO FIRST ENTRY INTO AQUARIUS, 2023-2024

2023 will be the testing ground for this twenty years long transit, lasting until 2044. After sixteen years in Capricorn Pluto will take its time to leave, at first transiting Aquarius between March 23 and June 12, to enter this sign for good only on January 22 2024.

To get an idea of the type of influence we are looking at, the last time this transit occurred was during the ground-breaking end of the 18th century (1778-1798), period epitomized by the French, American and industrial revolutions, marking the beginning of our modern version of the world, a powerful upgrade that changed everyone’s lives and also the natural world in very radical ways. 

Changes of immense magnitude seem to be on the cards for our planet then; not just because Pluto is changing Signs but because Uranus and Neptune, the other two giant at the edge of the solar system, will also shift Signs by 2025, respectively in Gemini and Aries. We are in for a mighty turn of the screw; hopefully we will not crack under such pressure.

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