December: Farewell & Finale to 2018

December began with a blast of Sagittarius energy, with Sun, Mercury, and Jupiter all conjunct in the sign. Mars in Pisces was exactly square the Sun, the Moon was opposing Chiron, while Venus was exactly opposed Uranus and the two of them were square the Moon’s nodes. It was a stunningly potent moment. That which we have been learning about relationships and our values with the Venus retrograde period, was suddenly available to us in conscious form, and the question of “What do I do with this information now?” was revelatory. Do I utilize the information in the most positive ways possible for my own good and the good of all? Or do I sit on it, and pretend this revelation didn’t happen?

Hopefully, we will all put into conscious action what we have learned. We can ignore who we are for a time, but if we don’t act on the value of ourself as an asset to the world, eventually it will haunt us. “Honesty is the best medicine’ is an old adage, and one we need to heed. If a relationship is demeaning or draining your energy, it may be time for it to end, or time for you to be honest with what you need from it. The same is true of activities. If there is something you are doing which you have a choice about, and that is not right for where you are, emotionally or spiritually, it may be time to end it. Change is sometimes exciting and gratifying, and other times it can be a real challenge at the outset, but later a great gift. Change, made on our own behalf, is inevitable if we are to evolve.

Venus slipped into Scorpio at 9:02 AM PST on December 2. If you recall, Venus was in Scorpio when she went retrograde in early October. Then while retrograde, she went back into Libra. Now in Scorpio again, Venus will move out of her retrograde shadow on December 17. The Moon was conjunct Venus on December 3, and opposed Eris and Uranus, reminding us of the deep emotionality and fearlessness of feminine energy.

The Sun and Mars are in a square aspect the entire month of December. The first two weeks the Sun is also square Neptune, as Mars and Neptune were conjunct. These aspects, in particular, the Sun squaring the conjunction of Mars and Neptune, encouraged us to act with integrity, to be honest, and compassionate. It could also have felt disillusioning, when things didn’t turn out as expected, or had us asking ourselves why it went wrong. The primary issue however, was to not take things personally, to understand that we all act from our own perspective.

Mercury stationed direct at 1:23 PM PST on December 6, but will remain in its shadow until December 24. Mercury is trine Chiron the first two and a half weeks of the month, which makes the shadow period of the retrograde possibly very productive on an inner level. The trine with Chiron could have us finding new perspectives on early life woundings. When Mercury moves into Sagittarius, we could also get a more positive “big picture” view of how the wounding and the healing fits into our current state of mind and spirit.

December’s New Moon arrived at 11:19 PM PST, also on December 6 at 15 degrees Sagittarius, widely conjunct Jupiter, and square to the Mars/Neptune conjunction in Pisces. The squares were powerful, encouraging us to explore and act with great sensitivity, to seek what is true, and not just attractive or consistent with old beliefs. We were reminded that everything does not go according to our plan or schedule, but has its own path, and we need to open up to, and accept, what will serve the greater good.

A New Moon, as you know, is a new beginning, a new start. It is a time of envisioning where we go from here, no matter if we feel ready or not. And there is a quality of this New Moon, with its strong connection to the Mars/Neptune conjunction that says, “let go.” It is important to not start a new cycle without releasing the old. We are not  meant to drag old mental and emotional “stuff” along on this new journey. That would only hold us back. A major release is precisely what is needed in the last few weeks before the Winter Solstice, which is another new beginning. We can imagine being a tree, saying farewell to the beautiful leaves it has nurtured for several seasons, but now knows that they must fall away and become the compost for feeding the growth of what’s new.

Mercury moved into Sagittarius at 3:43 PM PST on December 12, joining the Sun and Jupiter. As we mentioned earlier, Mercury is trine to Chiron as this shift is made, and will remain so through December 16. Sagittarius is known for its interest in learning, vision, optimism, and looking at the larger picture. It is for this reason, the trine with Chiron could encourage us to find a more forward-thinking view of our Chironic wounds. From December 16 through December 26, Mercury is conjunct Jupiter. Particularly due to the fact that many holiday and family-oriented gatherings may occur at this time, this conjunction could help facilitate a more sociable and generous frame of mind for all of us. It could even assist in resolving conflicts between friends and family.

Between December 2 and December 18, it is interesting to note that all planets are within 180 degrees, or one half of the chart. Only the North Node of the Moon was in the other hemisphere. That means that after Venus moved forward from her opposition to Uranus on December 10, there were no oppositions for over a week. All the power struggles we observed or felt were inner battles, real, but ongoing ones, not newly initiated. Venus went from opposing Uranus to forming a trine with Neptune and a sextile to Saturn, so learning more about our relationships and values continued. Our learning, however, moved from surprises and new awareness to needing a creative plan for putting into place a more appropriate conscious reality.  

And then? Yes, a new season, and a new cycle arrives. The Winter Solstice, the moment when the Sun enters Capricorn, arrives at 2:23 PM PST, on December 21, less than a day prior to the Full Moon. The Solstice is an astronomical phenomenon marking the day with the shortest period of daylight and the longest period of darkness in the year. It occurs when one of the Earth's poles has its maximum tilt away from the Sun. It happens twice yearly, once in each hemisphere. In the Northern Hemisphere this is the December Solstice and in the Southern Hemisphere this is the June solstice. It is a perfect time for a ritual, or a formal blessing and gratitude prayer, for all we have received during the year, both the joys and the challenges. It is what all of our ancestors did, and it behooves us to follow suit, bringing into consciousness our relationship to the elements: earth, air, fire, and water.

The Full Moon in Cancer arrives at 9:47 AM PST on December 22, when the Sun in Capricorn and Moon in Cancer are less than one full degree into their signs. The duo form an out-of-sign T square with a Mars/Chiron conjunction in Pisces. Saturn is in a wide conjunction with the Sun. Mercury is conjunct Jupiter in Sagittarius. Venus in Scorpio is trine Neptune in Pisces. Pluto in Capricorn is square the Eris/Uranus conjunction in Aries. Every planet has a connection to at least one other planet.

The Moon rules the cardinal sign of Cancer, so merely by its nature, this is a powerful final Full Moon of the year. It is emotional, watery, yet earthy as well, for the Sun is in Capricorn, as is Saturn and Pluto. Full Moons are about balancing a polarity, as are the Moon’s nodes. And it happens that the nodes changed signs last month into the Capricorn/Cancer polarity. Both signs seek security, but in different ways. The Cancer Moon wants nurturing, emotional support, a safe and secure home, while the Capricorn Sun seeks success, achievement, and respect. Given that the Sun sits at the midpoint of Jupiter and Pluto at this Full Moon, success could easily be achieved, with plenty of energy left over to provide the caring and emotion needed for the Cancer Moon, especially when the square with Mars is somewhat softened in Pisces.

However, there’s always the potential for a shadowy side. If a person is not responding to clues of what needs to be released of their old beliefs and values, and insists on clinging to old wounds for identity, it is likely they will not experience the emotional caring and support of this Cancer Moon, nor feel they are respected “enough.” The Uranian shocks received by the Sun and the Mars/Chiron conjunction in Pisces could set them off in a delusional series of reckless actions. A case in point is now residing in the White House.

The next day, December 23, there is a grand water trine between the Moon in Cancer, Venus in Scorpio, and Neptune in Pisces, creating an almost dream-like potential of emotional longing. The Moon opposes both Saturn and Pluto, while the Mercury/Jupiter conjunction squares Neptune. It will be important to surround yourself with people you feel comfortable with, or to be in settings that give you pleasure. Otherwise, there could be a great deal of unease and agitation.

December 25 finds the Moon in Leo, with easy trines to the Mercury/Jupiter duo in Sagittarius. Hopefully that will allow those who celebrate Christmas to enjoy their day despite world news or inclement weather!

The final week of the month, the Sun forms a conjunction with Saturn, Venus sextiles Pluto, Mercury moves on from Jupiter. As we approach the end of 2018, this Sun/Saturn conjunction in Capricorn feels quite strong. Pluto is nearing the Moon’s South Node in Capricorn. It is as if we are receiving information on what that South Node is portending for its duration in this sign. What are the ways of living, the value systems, we’ve taken on as individuals and as a society, that need to change? What consensus beliefs have gone “over the top” to the point of being destructive? I think we could all say, “plenty.” We will be looking at this more in 2019.

Mars makes its move into its own sign of Aries at 6:20 PM PST on December 31, New Year’s Eve. It’s an appropriate beginning of the New Year, with the planet of action starting another trip through the zodiac. Like Mars, we have completed a cycle as well. And like Mars, we need to start the New Year with the spirit of Aries: independent, forthright, courageous, positive, and self-assured that we can make a difference for ourselves and for the collective in 2019.

See you next month!



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