The three most powerful planets in the solar system each made unusually important sign changes since 2008. Pluto transitioned into Capricorn between January and November 2008. Uranus transitioned into Aries between May 2010 and March 2011. Neptune transitioned into Pisces between April 2011 and February 2012.
Each sign change released an immense amount of disruptive energy. The Pluto and Uranus ingresses, at least, seriously threatened global stability.
Pluto’s transition into Capricorn brought a severe global economic crisis. Uranus’s transition into Aries brought violent political uprisings in many Arab nations and elsewhere in the world. It also brought a sharp increase in political protest and unrest generally. Neptune’s transition into Pisces brought an intensification of ideological conflict, a breakdown of the social contract and psychological and spiritual crises on the individual level.
These prolonged releases of difficult and disruptive energies also took its toll on our personal health and well-being.
New Planetary Alignments
Uranus, Neptune and Pluto are now settling into a more supportive and stable arrangement. The threat of immediate global catastrophe has subsided, for now.
Uranus is now in square relationship to Pluto, stimulating vigorous conflict between governments and the governed.
Uranus is also in semisextile relationship to Neptune. Personal hopes and desires, private frustrations, and concealed psychological wounds inform vigorous efforts at self-assertion and self-expression.
Neptune is in sextile relation to Pluto. This will allow governments to work harmoniously with reformers at the grassroots level.
The whole configuration will aid the slow, tentative formation of new, initially fragile, social, economic and political relationships across the globe.
Saturn, soon to enter Scorpio, will help impose order, sense, responsibility and civility on political and economic process. Even under Saturn’s watchful eyes, however, these energies are subject to abuse by extremists, demagogues, would-be dictators and the unscrupulous.
The majority of April’s many aspects were focused in the 7th and 8th houses. This foretold major shifts in all things related to insurance, pensions, inheritances, investments and our most important personal alliances. Also, many of us began the pursuit of shifting, partially defined goals in these confusing and uncertain circumstances.
April’s Planetary Chain of Command
Neptune dominates April’s dispositor chart. It is in command of everything except the Moon.
In essence, personality patterns, as represented by the Moon, got out of sync with a rapidly changing reality, a reality that is becoming increasingly difficult to see clearly. The personality, a creature of ingrained habit and established pattern, was at a loss amidst the change, uncertainty and utter lack of clarity.
The Personality’s Dilemma
The part of the personality represented by the Moon cannot, of itself, create new, updated patterns. That would be true even if it the personality itself could understand what was going on in the world around it, which it isn’t. The personality needs guidance. To cope with the new situation people had to seek out new sources of guidance.
Key relationships needed a new kind of focus. The chart pushed us to deemphasize romance and personal emotional gratification in favor of psychological growth and spiritual maturity. It also direct us toward alliances with more mature, experienced and knowledgeable people.
Mutable May 2012
There is a lot of stuff going on in May. There is an eclipse, for starters, but there are also several potent and complicated planetary formations. Also, underlying May’s numerous and complicated aspects is a deep and wide reservoir of mutable energy. Mutable energy seems to eliminate the very possibility of clarity and certainty. Finally, as truly confusing and paradoxical (or baffling) as May’s highly Neptunian chart is, it is loaded with positive synchronicity. The Force is with us in May.
Reality is taking on a foamy quality. Making plans is like sculpting in foam. No matter one’s skill or effort, the results remain indistinct, soft and constantly shifting. Shapes fizz and melt and droop even as sculpt. It won’t accept real definition or keep its intended form.
The Bad News First
Aggravated Relationship Tensions
Let’s start with the bad news. Astrology charts are divided into left and right semi-circles. The left semi-circle, centered on the ascendant, represents us, the self. The right semi-circle, centered on the descendant, represents others. The horizontal line between the ascendant and descendant is the major relationship axis in the chart.
In May, a powerful set of oppositions straddles the chief relationship axis. Neptune and Chiron in Pisces bracket the ascendant. They oppose the Moon in Leo and Mars in Virgo on the descendant.
The Mars/Neptune part of the opposition can cause the overzealous pursuit of ideals. It can also cause the kind of strident and divisive ideological conflicts that damage or destroy relationships, or that turn friends into enemies. The Mars/Chiron part of the opposition, especially, can produce emotionally hurtful and bitter exchanges.
The Moon/Neptune part of the opposition can cause self-doubt and self-questioning, or psychological and spiritual crises. It, too, can cause serious relationship tensions and intense personality differences.
On the macro level, this opposition can cause intense conflicts over ideas and ideals, especially those related to healing issues. It can also aggravate “identity politics” - it can intensify the hostilities surrounding race, gender, religion, ethnicity and nationality.
On the micro level, it can bring life-changing events and decisions related to our most important relationships, at home, at work and in the community.
The Good News
A Tale of Two Kites
This set of oppositions would be bad news indeed were they not encompassed by two kites, both aligned with the chief relationship axis.
One of these kites is anchored at the ascendant. It includes, in part, a grand trine between Mercury, Mars and Pluto.
Mercury is in Taurus in the 2nd house of personal and grassroots finances. Pluto is in Capricorn in the idealistic 11th house. Mars is in Virgo, the sign of service and labor, in the 7th house of partnerships.
This part of the kite promises vigorous, fruitful, reform-oriented debate about grassroots finances. It is also very supportive of business and commerce.
Mercury, Chiron, Neptune and Pluto form a triangle that completes the kite. This triangle interjects idealism and healing issues into the discussion.
Overall, this kite absorbs and channels the intense, potentially damaging tensions of the opposition into more fruitful channels. It also links possible points of contention to a broad range of related issues, making them easier to understand and discuss, heading off potential conflict.
A second, partial kite, anchored near the descendant, also sets along the relationship axis. It, too, embraces the opposition along the relationship axis.
This partial kite includes a broad, out-of-sign trine between Saturn in Libra and Neptune in Pisces. Saturn’s sobering, moderating influence will tend to harmonize overly idealistic Neptunian aspirations with economic realities, group financial needs and shared economic responsibilities.
Saturn, in Libra, is in the natural 8th house of Pisces, occupying a position of power in relation to Pisces and Neptune; in this sense, Libra rules Pisces.
Saturn in Libra also occupies the 8th house of the chart. Hence, Saturn is well-positioned to impose reason and civility on the many issues sure to be raised by Neptune.
This partial kite also includes a triangle formed by the Moon in the 6th, Venus in the 4th, and Saturn in the 8th house. Briefly stated, this triangle will inject issues related to jobs, physical and emotional health, and long-term, group financial issues into the discussion in a constructive way.
Acute tensions over conflicting interests will be channeled into a lively, ‘spirited’ and productive dialogue.
But this dialogue can easily and quickly turn into a shouting match or a fight. The kites help, but make no mistake. The explosive potential of the opposition remains. Even casual, day-to-day encounters might have a confrontational edge.
A set of sesquiquadrates (in red) affects some of the same planets. Sesquiquadrates point to intense striving after elusive answers. Several quincunxes (in violet), or inconjuncts, add a few of inescapable and irresolvable dilemmas for good measure.
These aspects act like Chinese finger puzzles. The harder you tug, the harder it is to extricate your fingers. They rule out quick agreement.
On the upside, they also help rule out simplistic, inadequate solutions to complex problems. But they can bring about unwieldy and generally disappointing compromises - or uneasy truces. They will doubtless work to sustain the general atmosphere of chaos, too.
Neptune Tips Its Hand, Clearly
Important Neptunian themes emerge with special clarity in May.
First, let’s understand just how mutable this chart is. There are mutable signs on all the angles. Neptune, the quintessentially mutable planet is in its home sign of Pisces, a quintessentially mutable sign, in its natural house, the quintessentially mutable 12th house. This big bundle of mutability sets on the ascendant.
The numerous aspects in the chart, too, form a Neptunian matrix of confusing, shifting tensions. An altogether murky, mutable situation.
The themes in May’s chart are classic Neptune. The chart pushes us away from materialistic, self-centered concerns and beyond ingrained attitudes and established patterns. It also pushes us away from specific and concrete issues into abstract, intangible and obscure, distinctly Neptunian issues.
We can get a much clearer idea of Neptune’s likely effects from the sign dispositor chart. The sign dispositor chart reveals a chart’s chain of planetary command.
It is clear from the sign dispositor chart that planetary processes are governed by Mercury and Venus in mutual reception. This suggests that detailed interpersonal discussions are prioritized.
Neptune is strongly placed in its home sign, Pisces. However, it does not directly control anything; it cannot fog these discussions – not directly. But it can pull such discussions out of old, familiar pathways and blur the boundaries that would ordinarily restrict them.
Neptune can also make us aware of possibilities we might not have seen. Or, possibilities we once ignored can develop sudden appeal. This will be clear when we examine Neptune’s position in the composite chart (see below).
High Minded Yet Down to Earth
Checking the dispositor chart against the composite chart reveals a special focus on commitment and nurturance issues. Neptune’s mission in May seems to be to dramatically expand our understanding of these issues.
The placement of Mercury and Venus in the composite chart clearly reveals this overriding emphasis.
Mercury, co-ruler of the dispositor chart, is between between Vesta, which represents single-minded dedication to a principle or ideal, and Ceres, which governs nurturance issues.
Mercury, Vesta and Ceres are all strongly placed in Taurus in the 2nd house, the natural house of Taurus. Taurus and the 2nd house govern day-to-day, grassroots economics.
This in itself indicates a strong, highly principled and, yet, down-to-earth focus on nurturance issues, specifically, the task of providing food, health care, childcare, childhood education, housing and the other basic, indispensable requirements of life.
This focus on nurturance is further emphasized by the placement of Venus: Venus is the ruler of Taurus and the 2nd house. It is also in Gemini near the imum coeli, in the 4th house, the house that governs nurturance issues.
Mercury and Venus are, of course, in each other’s natural signs, too, in mutual reception. This strengthens their influence and, again, underlines the importance of nurturance issues in the chart.
Gemini has a strong relationship to politics, especially grassroots, retail politics. Politics will invade our home and family life. The concerns of home and family will overflow into politics.
All planetary processes, then, are governed by Mercury and Venus in mutual reception; both are placed in a way that emphasizes the importance of nurturance issues and all the costs and responsibilities related to it.
As noted, Neptune is powerfully placed in the dispositor chart but doesn’t directly control any anything.
In the composite chart, Neptune is even more powerfully placed in Pisces, its home sign, in the 12th house, its native house, and near the ascendant. Everything about Neptune’s placement underlines its power in this chart. Neptune may not govern the chart, exactly, but it does powerfully and relentlessly affect everything in it.
In brief, Mercury and Venus immerse us all in vital discussion about vital nurturance issues. Neptune makes sure these discussions overflow the usual boundaries.
Beyond the Tired and True
In the composite chart, Jupiter is exactly conjunct the Sun in Taurus. Both are at 23° 10’ 49” Taurus. This aspect occurs physically in the early afternoon of May 13th, GMT.
Under these circumstances, Jupiter is said to be “combust” the Sun. Jupiter’s wise, generous, confidence building, wealth building qualities are dissolved in and diluted by the Sun’s powerful energies.
Both Sun and Jupiter are also in that part of the chart affected by the Moon’s south node at 5° Gemini. So, Jupiter’s energies are weakened by the Sun. But the nearness of the south node also warns us away from reliance on Jupiter’s energy, however weak.
The Jupiter/Sun conjunction is also at the point where May’s solar eclipse strikes the composite chart. If you were going to be seduced by the south node, the worst time to do it would be during an eclipse of the Sun (joined at the hip with Jupiter) in the region of the south node. Hence, Jupiter’s normally reliable promises of gopod fortune and wealth would be illusory in May.
So the chart is clearly warning us away from normally very appealing and comfortably familiar options. Normally very attractive influences, which actually govern the chart, are cast in an unattractive, off-putting astrological light. They are given great weight and prominence, but presented as something we must avoid, or whose appeal we must steadfastly resist.
These mixed, contradictory - highly paradoxical - signals are bound to cause confusion and add to the general air of chaos. They will also doubtless lead many astray.
The Road Rarely Traveled
The chart points us instead toward a vision of future possibilities based on research, reason and experiment. Generally speaking, people don’t take well to reason or research when it is applied to their personal lives.
The north node tells us which options to favor and promises to support us vigorously if we do. The part of fortune, like the north node, is a point of high positive synchronicity, a source of support, encouragement and reward.
Both the north node and the part of fortune are within one degree of each other. Both are powerfully placed near the midheaven. Both are near Juno in Sagittarius. With Juno in the mix, too, May’s chart, like April’s seems to be telling us to ally ourselves with, thoughtful, experienced, high-minded people.
Combined, these influences offer strong support to those who choose the unfamiliar and less immediately appealing path to a solution.
Follow the Far Seeing Ones
In essence: in our efforts to find our way through all the confusion and tumult of May, the north node and the part of fortune will reward us generously if we seek alliance with and guidance from experienced and informed people; all the lights we hit will be green.
Accept new ideas about your most vital and intimate relationships and your most sacred responsibilities to yourself and others. Explore beyond your comfort zone.
Forget instant gratification, personal fulfillment, romance . . . all that stuff. Reject the lure of custom and tradition.
Think community, interpersonal alliances, supportive networks, and group effort supported by well-informed plans drawn up by knowledgeable and experienced people.
Combine scientific and business expertise, and careful planning and organization to serve local needs. In personal matters, too, listen to those who possess at bit of wisdom, some experience and a degree of expertise.
I don’t think this chart will go down easily with anyone, actually. It is possible to tease out the charts various themes and influences intellectually, but it is hard to imagine this chart not increasing emotional and mental turmoil on a personal level, at least in the near term. Even the chart’s considerable quota of positive synchronicity cannot fully compensate for that.
We now leave off consideration of the composite chart and turn to a consideration of some specific astrological events in May.
Lately I have been tracking complex astrological formations that are not generally considered by astrologers. In May, there are a number of such formations.
A six-pointed star made up of trines takes shape early on May 8th, and persists through May 20th, GMT. This will bring 12 days of high positive synchronicity - unusually lucky, fortuitous days. For 12 days, you will only hit green lights, despite all the confusion and uncertainty. Things will tend to work out OK.
A Lucky Eclipse Chart
There is, as noted, an eclipse of the Sun late on May 20th, GMT. This first six-pointed star ends very early on May 20th, well before the solar eclipse begins. But if Vesta, Ceres and Lilith are included in our calculations, another six-pointed star emerges in time for the eclipse!
Also, the part of fortune is exactly conjunct the ascendant at the moment of the new moon. Essentially, the eclipse peaks at a moment of very high positive synchronicity. This will infuse the entire eclipse chart and all that follows from it with high levels of positive synchronicity, or just plane old fashioned luck.
Difficult decisions and vital turning points will arrive amidst high positive synchronicity, i.e., when our luck is running high. And it will be running high if we favor the north node in our decisions.
A hard six-pointed star made up of two T-squares exists from the afternoon of May 23rd thru the morning of May 24th, GMT. This brings a short period of high negative synchronicity. How this brief burst of negative synchronicity meshes with all the positive synchronicity is anyone’s guess. It will probably serve to rule out certain unrealistic options for many of us.
A five-pointed star occurs from mid-morning to early evening on May 26th, GMT. It is made up of inconjuncts and sesquiquadrates.
This star functions like a “hard Yod,” forcing intensive efforts to resolve stubborn and difficult issues for which there are no ready answers. This star will probably ensure that, whatever we manage to achieve, there will be plenty of loose ends to tie up down the road.
A Wild Ride
Amidst the confusion, the chart pushes us away from habit, ingrained attitudes, custom, tradition and sentiment and toward alliances with informed, experienced people.
Neptune, for its part, provides the vision, motivation and psychological flexibility to make the necessary leaps. The abundance of positive synchronicity will help us all land on our feet.
In late May, 2012, a rapid series of contrasting, high energy astrological events will occur in rapid succession unleashing highly varied, sharply divergent and very powerful bursts of energy.
They will almost uncertainly unleash a surge of events so complex and varied that it will be impossible to see beyond them or to understand or control them as they occur.
And that doesn’t count the second, or follow-up, eclipse of the Moon in early June.
This will certainly be a momentous and anxious time, but we must keep in mind the powerful sources of positive synchronicity in the charts. Also we need to remember that the potentially catastrophic influences of the three major planetary ingresses are now largely behind us.