Once again a great number of earthlings have decided to celebrate the “new” year in the middle of winter, very close to the shortest, darkest day of the year – ten degrees of Capricorn on my portion of the planet.
Spring, clearly, is when the “new” occurs in the northern hemisphere. Spring is when the buds push through the earth to become flowers, animals wake from hibernation to eat and make babies, and the Ohio cardinals sit in the trees and sing to lure a mate.
So why not celebrate a “new” year each spring? Why do we start a new year in the winter?
In October 1582, the Gregorian calendar, which has a January 1 start date, was in the beginning stages of adoption as Pluto, the planet of destruction, evolution and transformation, was in four degrees of Aries (the first sign of the zodiac that brings us spring). Pluto brought us a new, standard calendar that accounted for the fraction of a day that makes an annual period so difficult to calculate so that we could all celebrate the same holidays at the same time, bill each other accurately and make sure the anything “annual” (like your annual review at work) had a consistent cadence.
Life is certainly much easier when we can plan a dinner date on say, October 15, 1582, and arrive in the same place at the same time as our companion. If we had planned, say, October 9, 1582, we might have had trouble meeting our companion since that date did not occur as the new calendar was implemented and ten days were skipped to reconcile dates.
While the ten days were considered “lost” by some, like the shift to daylight savings time and back to standard time, time is not truly “lost.” The sun rises and sets as usual. Human routines are shifted creating the sense of time “gained” or “lost.”
Linear calendars and linear time bring us beginnings, middles and endings. Winter is an “ending” of sorts so is another explanation for making it a “beginning.”
Astrology, in contrast, like your old hand-motion clocks, works in cycles. The moon is a daily (changing signs) or monthly (full revolution) cycle, one that women in particular are familiar with as are those that live by oceans. The sun changes signs monthly and revolves around the sun annually. With eight other planetary bodies, there are eight more cycles long and longer representing our changing yet cyclical existence.
A conscientious astrologer shouldn’t talk about beginnings and endings since cycles are shifts in and out of energy patterns that will one day cycle again. Like laundry, the cycles do not “end.”
What’s new in 2019?
If January 1, 2019 is the “new” year, let’s see what’s different from the “last” year.
The sun, moon, Mercury, Venus and Mars change signs many times during a given 365-day period. If a year has something new, it’s more noticeable through changes in Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, Neptune and Pluto.
The “inner planets” of sun through Mars certainly play into the energies of a given year. However, if we look deeply, many events that seem to occur suddenly are actually the result of past decisions and behaviors as represented by the outer planets.
We reap what we sow.
The financial crisis of 2008, for example, wasn’t a sudden event but the result of past practices, some beginning decades earlier. Other events, of course, are sudden and random such as winning the lottery or being struck by lightning. Astrological Uranus symbolizes these types of events that you truly have not set in motion, but that have the power to change your life.
This year beginning January 1, 2019 there are two changes from last year – Jupiter is now transiting its ruling fire-sign Sagittarius and Uranus will go direct in March 2019 and continue through earth-sign Taurus for the next seven years. Uranus actually went into Taurus in May 2018 but then went retrograde back into Aries.
Saturn deserves a mention as it went into its ruling sign earth-sign Capricorn right around the new year last year (December 20, 2017) and was within a couple degrees of the sun on January 1, 2019.
Jupiter in Sagittarius and Saturn in Capricorn are pure but contrasting energies. Jupiter is expansion and Saturn is contraction. In their ruling signs, there is purity in that Saturn will contract what it needs to contract (authority, structure, government) and Jupiter will expand what it needs to expand (social institutions, education, travel).
The US stock market volatility may be just this interplay of Jupiter and Saturn. In December 2019, Jupiter will move into Capricorn joining Saturn and Pluto so contraction may win by the end of the year.
Uranus in Taurus will affect property, assets and the physical body. Taurus is the earth itself. Earth changes are not new but expect more as Uranus enlightens us to Taurus reality which is reality itself. Uranus is stimulating so possibly there will be more enjoyment of the earth rather than enjoyment of virtual realities that are increasing and distracting us both from our bodies and the earth.
By the end of this year, there will be a lot of earth energy. With earth, there’s always the risk of, how shall we say it, a little bit of greed. But we will also be learning some lessons about greed, accumulation and the hoarding of assets.
Happy earth year!