The year kicks off quite mellow, but it won’t stay like that for long. On January 3rd, Mars changes signs, moving from murky Scorpio into ardent but fickle Sagittarius. Such a fiery planet in this impetuous sign should certainly steam things up, despite it being the middle of winter. Mars in Sagittarius is a knight in shining armor fighting with conviction for his cause. If you are passionate about something, now is the time to let rip.

But that is just part of the build-up to the big event of the month, or, rather, the whole year! In the second week of January, we will witness an eclipse Full Moon that looks like a karmic catharsis, followed by Uranus going direct, which should give a bit of a push to things that have been lingering in a state of stagnating in recent months. This is immediately followed by the momentous Saturn / Pluto conjunction, which has been such a loooong time coming. (More on this later!)

This is no everyday event, and you should perhaps take note of the things that are coming to pass this January. They are likely to make history.

It will be a relief to see this knot of intensity finally break and release its power. But of course, it will not be without danger, for the road ahead is no amble down the garden path. Interestingly, there is only one exact contact between Saturn and Pluto, but that does not really make things any easier. It certainly won’t all be over instantly. Rather, there is an aftermath that will have to be mopped up for the rest of the year. But one thing is for sure, the things that are coming to a head this January will be setting the tone for the rest of the year.

Saturn-Pluto conjunctions take place every 33-38 years. They are associated with social and political unrest, violence and totalitarianism. These phenomena can be observed during the 2 year period before the actual conjunction takes place. At the time of the actual conjunction, there is some kind of breakthrough, that sets the wheels into motion for the new cycle (the next 33-38 years).  Saturn-Pluto test the social structures upon which the stability of our world rests. Such structures must be able to remain firm yet also adapt to the challenges of changing times. Each generation adapts them to their needs. Sometimes they become hollowed out or corrupted, and when that is the case and they can no longer fulfill their purpose we can expect great turmoil and struggles between the old and the new order. It is important to remember that whatever the new order is, it is no more permanent than the old one. What gives it stability is its ability to fulfill the current needs of society. 

Right after this conjunction, Venus changes signs, moving from the somewhat detached and cool-headed Aquarius into the much more emotional sign of Pisces. The emotional dimension suddenly takes up a lot more space.

Mercury moves into Aquarius on the 16th, just ahead of the Sun. This will balance out the emotionality of Venus and bring some reason into the picture. Aquarius is no fan of emotional gooeyness or drama. And in situations that are in danger of getting bogged down in that sort of intensity, Mercury in Aquarius can bring a much-needed breath of fresh air. He represents the rational, executive function of the brain. But of course, in doing so, he may fail to connect with the emotional side of the issue altogether. Emotional distancing and rationalization work as defense mechanisms to ward off emotional stuff that is getting too hot to handle.

The Sun joins Mercury in Aquarius on the 20th, which shifts the energy further into the realm of reason. This dynamic will be highlighted on the New Moon in Aquarius on the 24th. Mars, still in Sagittarius sparks a rather idealistic vision or distorted fantasy, while Uranus demands real, practical change, and not just lofty words and grand waffle. To reconcile promises and fantasies with actual action will be the challenge going forward.