AS 2016 DAWNS, cultural earthquakes rumble on and momentum builds for the changes already in progress. However, the dust is still so stirred that we can’t see the new lay of the land. The square between Uranus in Aries and Pluto in Capricorn is waning but still influences us throughout 2016.
Pluto in Capricorn (2008-2024) asks us to renovate our approach to political and personal power around the world. We see an effort to crack down on debates about governing structures. Rebellion will naturally follow in response, energized by revolutionary, anarchistic Uranus in independent Aries (2010-2018).
But all is not politics. Neptune in Pisces (2011-2025) lets the veil between the worlds stay thin. Our imagination and spiritual hunger sit like a welcoming pool, waiting for us — though we have to consciously reach in to activate them. Our escapist habits and personal illusions also sing to us, and religion remains an important motivating political force. Saturn squares Neptune at the beginning of 2016 and can help us restrain the excess of Neptune.
Every time one of the faster moving planets hits these two outer planets, our whole world vibrates; we are thrown a few wild cards, and all our ongoing issues are stirred up. We saw this as Mars rang this bell in November and December, and as Mercury set it off right before Christmas. The sun conjuncts Pluto (just as Mars enters focused Scorpio) and causes an event again on Tuesday. We may be tested by an occurrence, a realization, or a flood of memories, but Mercury encourages us to work through our discouragement, integrate conflicting needs, and take an unusually honest and imaginative approach.
Mercury, arbiter of communications, nervous systems, and transportation, usually retrogrades three times a year, but this year we’re lucky to get four, starting on Tuesday. Mercury retrogrades from Tuesday, Jan. 5, to Jan. 25; from April 28 to May 22; from Aug. 30 to Sept. 21; and from Dec. 19 to Jan. 8, 2017. Throughout January, let’s finish projects, review last year’s events, and change our plans based on this new understanding.
Keep the schedule loose and mobile the rest of the week. Let’s remember what we’re doing and where we want to go. February launches a new chapter.
FRIDAY, JAN. 1: Let this morning be quiet and contemplative as the waning Libra moon squares the sun and Pluto. We need to review more than plan and make resolutions throughout this month. Collaborative dialogue picks up tonight as thoughtful Mercury enters sociable Aquarius.
SATURDAY, JAN. 2: Tie up loose ends, keep the schedule flexible and expectations low, and make relationships a priority.
SUNDAY, JAN. 3: Our tails twitch, crowds bug us, and we may have had enough of our relatives as the moon and Mars both conjunct in solitude-loving, serious Scorpio. Speak from compassion, because confrontations might otherwise escalate. It may help to take a solitary journey.
MONDAY, JAN. 4: The morning could be surly and uncooperative — lowlevel anxiety is distracting people. Give them room to be cranky and stay focused on the few things that actually need to be done.
TUESDAY, JAN. 5: It’s very easy to say the wrong thing and set people off on this tricky, emotional day as Mercury conjuncts Mars and retrogrades. Drive safely, speak consciously, cut everyone a lot of slack, and check in on depressed friends.
WEDNESDAY, JAN. 6: The moon enters Sagittarius and lightens the mood. Deal with present emergencies and begin a discussion about the future.
THURSDAY, JAN. 7: An interesting shift in perspective lets us look at past events with fresh eyes as the sun squares Uranus. We may need to correct or adjust projects already in the works.