How understanding cycles and archetypes can help us see clearly and act confidently
While trust in religions and institutions is deteriorating, more and more people are finding themselves in and with Astrology. It is uniquely positioned to help a huge number of people make sense of the problems we face and the changes occurring in the world around us, where our other means for sensemaking have broken down.
Astrology, and the way that we relate to it embody it, has evolved with us. It’s not a religion, but a system for recognizing what is good, true, and beautiful for us as individuals. There is no doctrine.
Better sensemaking results in better choice-making. If we can learn from Astrology, we can make more informed choices, and we can learn from our mistakes to build a future we are proud of.
You don’t have to “believe in Astrology” to learn from it. We know that the cycles of the moon affect the tides of the ocean. We also know that humans are about 60% water. Let’s assume, for now, that there is some meaning to the movement of the planets around us.
In this essay, I begin by telling the story of why I work with Astrology and how I have used it to support my self-actualization. I then briefly explain what Astrology is and how it works, before using Astrology to analyze the time period from 2008 through 2024. Finally, I make predictions based on Astrology for the next 20 years after that.
Why do I work with Astrology?
I dismissed Astrology for most of my life. I remember hearing stories of how over-generalized horoscopes seduced easily manipulated idealists into ascribing meaning to seemingly universal details. I saw back-page horoscopes in syndicated periodicals that, at best, catered to the lowest common denominator. It failed to stand up to logical scrutiny and scientific rigor — and that meant it was meaningless.
In August 2017, I made a last-minute decision to drive from my home in Minneapolis to Missouri to witness the Great American Eclipse.
I remember the build-up to the eclipse — birds swarmed, shadows swirled on the ground, people changed — emotionally and energetically. A primal quality emerged. People laughed uncontrollably, some wept openly, others screamed like wild folks. I stared up at the Sun with my eclipse glasses on, seeing the moon creep in front gradually. People were drumming and dancing to an ancient rhythm we all knew but had never experienced.
As the moon continued to pass directly between the earth and the sun, I felt more alive. Then, totality. I saw the moon nested perfectly between the sun and our vantage point. The moon was a black orb and all I could see of the sun was a brilliant white ring peaking around the edge of the moon. I lost myself in the ring of the eclipse. I took off my glasses and stared into it. I will never forget that image, that feeling of being touched in a place I did not know was inside of me. At once, I was at the center of the universe and part of it all. I felt awe, wonder, curiosity, and fear.
This single moment inspired a quest to investigate what exactly Astrology is, why its mythology has endured, how it can be used as a tool for contemplation and problem solving, and to what extent it can be used predictively.
How can we use Astrology?
We can use astrology as one lens to make sense of people and events. It is a filter that allows us to see patterns more objectively.
When we can reduce complex events and interplay to what is fundamental, we can begin to discern signal from noise more coherently. This is basic logic. In logical proofs, it is common to use a synthetic language (SL) so that we can discern syntax from semantics. There is less noise. This allows us to see problems more clearly because we can zoom out and understand the fundamentals. It depersonalizes the context.
It is a tool to make sense because it allows us to examine and understand behavioral source code. Source code is the fundamental building block that triggers action. DNA is biological source code.
When the pandemic became relevant for me in March 2020, I sat down, studied, and committed to my inner work. Astrology provided a lens of context, a filter I could use to scrutinize my existing biases and beliefs.
I used the framework of astrology in conjunction with meditation, psychedelics, and ritual. I would do the work on New Moons. The framework provided by astrology helped me to make sense of the experiences in a very practical way.
This allowed me to see myself more clearly, and understand the ways I have been conditioned to behave. I uncovered memories that enacted programs that were still driving the ship unconsciously. I became more fully aware of who I am and what my unique gifts are.
The cycles inform us where to invest our intention and attention. If you pay earnest attention to astrology, you will begin to see deeper, more meaningful connections between the archetypes and your life.
What is Astrology, really?
Astrology is the study of how the movement of the planets is a reflection of life on earth. Astrology uses the axiom “As above, so below”; that is, that life on earth is a reflection of life above. This assumption presupposes a common thread between us and each star, each planet, and everything that exists in the cosmos.
The 12 Zodiac signs provide our map. These are the constants in our archetypal equation. The planets move relative to the signs, each corresponding to a piece of the sky. Their location is fixed, relative to Earth and the other planets. The signs are the windows through which we follow planetary movements from Earth. The planets move about this at unique speeds. The signs are subdivided according to the element: Fire, Earth, Air, and Water. The first sign is Aries, the last one is Pisces, and the cycle repeats. Each sign is an Archetype.
Archetypes are loosely defined as persistent symbols, motifs, characters, patterns, and behaviors that are copied, emulated, or merged into. For instance, Cancer is the archetype of The Mother. We all have a relationship with this archetype, whether or not we are mothers. Aries is the Warrior. Certainly, we can imagine a time when we impulsively charged into battle without considering the consequences.
So, we can refer to archetypes as behavioral source codes or programs. Psychologist Carl Jung taught that archetypes operate collectively and individually. The whole point of archetypes, and mythology, is that everyone can relate to them. Some, more than others, of course.
Astrological archetypes come alive through careful contemplation and thoughtful application. They become more whole when we see the whole picture. They allow us to understand our own behaviors with a higher degree of clarity.
At its core, the Zodiac is an ambitious attempt to describe the DNA (source code) of life through archetypal mythology. The signs and planets are all associated with ancient mythology, usually Roman or Greek. Neptune is the Roman god of the sea, Mars is the god of war.
The planets are the main variables. They move through each sign, at different speeds, and each planet has rulership over particular signs and areas of life. Mercury rules communication and the intellect. Jupiter rules expansion and abundance. Saturn demands discipline and integrity. Mercury in Cancer communicates differently than Mercury in Gemini. The interior planets are more relevant day-to-day, the outer planets reflect broader cycles.
The other variable I will be addressing is geometry, referred to as aspects. When one planet creates a 90° angle with another we say they are square. This is a harsh angle that indicates an urgent crisis. Conjunctions occur when 2 or more planets align at the same degree in the same sign (similar to linguistics where conjunctions like “and” and “but” join two parts together). This is interpreted to mean an intensification and blending of the planets involved.
Pluto entered Capricorn in 2008, where he will stay until January 2024. Pluto transits characterize generational movements. Recognizing his pattern and influence requires some sample size. For reference, the millennial generation generally aligns with those who were born with Pluto in Scorpio (1983–1995).
I have separated the 16-year transit into 5 distinct meta-influences. There are a lot of nuances that could fill this up, and I find it most useful to look at the big picture trends. I’ll make some predictions.
2008–2010 — Pluto enters Capricorn
2011–2016 — Uranus in Aries square Pluto in Capricorn
2016–2018 — Saturn enters Sagittarius
2018–2021 — Saturn in Capricorn conjunct Pluto in Capricorn
2022–2024 — Lunar Node Squares
2024–2044 — Pluto in Aquarius
So, let’s dive in and try to make sense of the recent past through the lens of Astrology and notice that when we overlay current events with astrological cycles and archetypes, the picture becomes more clear.
Then, let’s consider some important choices we have to make and see what we can learn from Astrology to guide us through the current transition.
2008–2010 Saturn Square Pluto
In November 2008, Pluto entered the sign of Capricorn. Pluto is a dwarf planet that is at the outer edge of our solar system. Capricorn is the 10th sign in the zodiac story.
Pluto is the archetypal Shaman and helps to break us from our comforts by demanding we acknowledge darkness to realize our power. Under Pluto’s influence, we must be willing to let go of the past and transform. Pluto guides us into our seedy underbelly and reveals the mass pathologies which permeate the collective unconscious.
Capricorn is the archetype of The Father and rules power structures, career, and authority. A practical way of understanding the basic source code of Capricorn is to examine your relationship with your father, or those who claim to know what is best for you.
With Pluto in Capricorn, we would expect transformation for our power structures and authorities. Dark aspects of these would be exposed and need to be confronted. For example, the last time Pluto was in Capricorn (1762–1778), the Declaration of Independence was signed, articulating the abuses of power by the British Empire upon the 13 Colonies. It makes sense, then, that this transit would make the pathological manifestations of the United States Experiment and capitalism more apparent.
We would expect this to be an ideal time to build tangible structures and foundations for the future regarding traditions, paradigms, and systems of governance, knowing they will be put to the test again later.
The connection seems obvious, then, to the Global Financial Crisis, the most serious financial crisis since the Great Depression, which peaked in September 2008, just as Pluto was getting ready to enter Capricorn. The seedy underbelly of our financial system was exposed and we were, all at once, made keenly aware of problems so fundamental that they triggered banking and debt crises across the entire world, for many years after. This was not the work of a few bad actors. This was corrupted source code.
A fundamental problem in our global financial system was made painfully obvious as people lost their homes, jobs, cars, savings, and retirement accounts. We saw a sharp increase in suicide worldwide.
The inherent pathology revealed by the crisis: Too Big To Fail. There are rules that do not apply to everyone. In a game characterized by winners and losers, like capitalism, this seems to violate core principles. If not, it shows the limitations of the capitalist mindset taken to its extremes.
The system validated and incentivized greed and power-hungry behaviors. In Capricorn, Pluto demands that we be able to self-reflect, self-police, and adapt to a changing environment.
Similarly, a healthy expression of the Father archetype would demand accountability and responsibility. Who is responsible for holding those with power accountable? In the case of the Declaration of Independence, it was the citizens that were subjugated by tyrannical rule.
And so, we still wrestle with a big question posed by the crisis: How do we hold an increasingly complex system accountable? How transparent does a system need to be for us to take responsibility?
Well, the Bitcoin Whitepaper was published in 2008, and the protocol was subsequently enacted in 2009. A transparent monetary system that does not require a centralized authority was imagined, one which can self-police, self-inquire, and endure.
In order to accept that the Global Financial Crisis was a reflection of Pluto entering Capricorn, we have to be able to boil down some of these parts to fit the source code.
We must accept that our financial system is a “power structure”, or a system that both centralizes and distributes authority to make decisions. Our financial system clearly acts in a way that has an effect on basically everyone, from credit to financial policy. Even if it is not exactly the government, it clearly influences the government and vice versa.
We also would need to say with some certainty that the event shook us from some kind of program which had endured and might have endured longer, had the symptoms not reached the level of widespread suffering. The event disrupted the capitalistic program and made us aware of the dark sides of banking that were not transparent, such that leaders and citizens alike felt compelled to transform the economy or build a new one altogether.
2011–2015 — Uranus in Aries square Pluto in Capricorn
In 2011, Uranus entered Aries, a fire sign. Uranus lies beyond Saturn in the solar system and is a bit of an oddball, with its vertical axis and rings. It is the only planet in the solar system which rotates perpendicular to its orbit. Its poles are where most planets’ equators would be. This is supposedly an advanced feature, meaning that Uranus is ahead of the trend, a trait shared by the sign ruled by Uranus, Aquarius.
Uranus was discovered on March 13th, 1781, just twelve days after the Articles of Confederation was ratified, serving as the first United States Constitution, eight years before the current one was ratified.
Generally, Uranus brings disruption and is unpredictable. Uranus is potent, erratic, and often very surprising. Uranus exerts its control over rebellion, electricity, and eccentricity. Lightning strikes are a helpful metaphor for understanding the potency and randomness of Uranus’ inspiration. Uranus begs us to do the opposite and be unique.
Heterodoxy is a healthy expression of Uranus (as opposed to Orthodoxy). Contrarianism, or just doing the opposite for the sake of being different, is a pathological expression of Uranus. Uranus generally has unpopular opinions and does not conform to the conventions of authority.
Aries is symbolized by the ram, hardheaded and impatient. Aries is independent and impulsive, the lone warrior. Aries is a fire sign who acts first and then considers the practical and emotional implications later. We see intense passion and reluctant leadership. Big things can happen very quickly with Uranus in Aries, with this unpredictable and impulsive combination. Aries is the intensity at the beginning, whose energy is not built to endure to the end.
Under the influence of Uranus in Aries, we would expect to see individuals going against cultural norms or progress in an impulsive way, with little knowledge or regard for how it was going to play out long term.
The square geometry between Uranus in Aries and Pluto in Capricorn reveals an urgent crisis and how an enigmatic (Uranus) lone wolf (Aries) can disrupt “the machine” and destroy the reputational clout held by power structures (Capricorn). The angle occurred about 23 times between 2011 and 2016 because of retrogrades. A retrograde is when a planet appears to move backward relative to the zodiac. It doesn’t actually move backward. It is akin to an optical illusion. Remember, the 12 Zodiac Signs are our optics.
So, a couple of impulsive people were able to short-circuit the system and erode public trust in our power structures, without knowing how it was going to work out long term.
I’m sure you remember Edward Snowden and Donald Trump.
Edward Snowden went on “temporary leave” from his position at the NSA in May 2013, perfectly aligning with a Uranus/Pluto square. The leaks came out in waves, many of which align with peaks or accentuations of the Pluto/Uranus dance. Snowden thought of himself as a warrior, exposing the underbelly of the surveillance state.
The Patriot Act, which gave near-unlimited surveillance authority to government agencies, was enacted in the wake of September 11th. It was not being practiced the way we were told it would be. The government was spying on its citizens, indiscriminately, precisely, and broadly.
Snowden was one man, who acted impulsively, against the momentum of the growing surveillance state. Seemingly everyone else at the NSA was going in one direction, and Snowden did the opposite, in perfect Uranian unpredictability. His actions revealed the boundless power we had given to the state to “keep us safe”. The Protector is a classic embodiment of the archetypal source code baked into Capricorn, the Father.
Trust was eroded, perhaps even pulverized due to an abundance of transparency. Of course, it’s hard to trust someone that doesn’t trust us.
Was it the “right” thing to do?
This story is repeating itself today, with some tweaks to the storyline. Vladimir Putin has been an interesting villain for the United States and the EU, and his agenda is more difficult to pin down than you probably realize.
Like Donald Trump, he is motivated by power and status. Russia has a history of strong, authoritarian leaders, and he fits the bill. Still, few of the Western political elites can honestly claim any moral high ground over Putin, so many people are understandably suspicious of the motivations for the way he, and Russia, are portrayed in the media.
I am not saying he is one of the good guys. I am also saying that painting him as “the bad guy” is far too simplistic. It is important for us to be aware of the agenda and financial backing of the storytellers, and transparency is lacking.
The source code comes back to the same thing. An impulsive crusader unpredictably defying the conventions of the agenda (I’m using “agenda” loosely here). Putin sought to Make Russia Great Again, and he used the Crimean Peninsula to claim a minor victory for his narrative.
Of course, we also saw Donald Trump’s influence and power emerge during this time as a populist movement catalyzed around yet another enigmatic individual who refused to abide by the conventions of progress.
This time period provided the perfect archetypal substrate for a total rejection of the global, economic, and social policy.
2015–2018 Saturn in Sagittarius
Saturn lies beyond Jupiter in our solar system, before Chiron and Uranus. Saturn brings form to Jupiter’s expansion and exuberance, and places demand upon it. Sit up straight. Do it again. Be disciplined. These are all manifestations of the basic source code of Saturn, whose rings provide the perfect metaphor for its essence. Structure and integrity are fundamental to Saturn. Saturn spends 2–3 years in each sign.
The best way to understand Saturn’s influence in the life of the individual is through the context of the Saturn Return. The Saturn Return is when Saturn completes an entire revolution relative to when you are born. So, if Saturn was at 10° Sagittarius when you were born, Saturn returns to this place roughly 29 years later.
Archetypally, the Saturn Return is a time of trials. Saturn tests the life we have built for ourselves and will show us the ways we are living unsustainably. It is no coincidence that the average age for people going through a divorce for the first time is 30.
Saturn is here to make us aware of our limits and the rules we must abide by. Saturn ensures that we reap what has been sewn. We must live with the consequences of our actions, and own responsibility for our missteps.
Sagittarius is a fire sign whose archetypal energy can be seen within the explorer, the philosopher, and the zealot. Sagittarius is symbolized by the archer, the centaur who points his arrow towards the infinite horizon.
Sagittarius lives in pursuit of Truth yet rarely questions his assumptions, optimistically internalizing his own ideology and following it without question. Sagittarius has a deep trust in life that is codified into religion and science. Anywhere there is a quest for Truth, Sagittarius is there, exploring, teaching, and philosophizing.
While Saturn is in Sagittarius, we would expect to see the ways in which our quests for the Truth have fallen short. We might see a crisis in sensemaking, where the models we use to help us understand reality and the world around us (belief systems) fail to account for something fundamental and essential. Our ability to predict what might happen will fail. We would also expect to see tangible manifestations of the flaws in our belief systems.
What we know is thrown out the window. Who we think we are and what we ought to do demands examination and honesty. We can either engage with this process honestly or double down on what got us here, demonizing those who refuse to get with the program as we dig in our heels.
Here we see the tendency to confuse the path for the destination, the boat for the opposite shore. Where you are going does not equal how you get there. Our systems and models are inquiries into truth, not the arbiters of Truth.
Two massively influential and informative electoral events occurred under this influence in 2016, events that shocked many people and forced them to really take a hard look at things.
On June 23, 2016, UK citizens voted to leave the European Union, passing the Brexit referendum.
A few months later, Donald Trump won the 2016 US Presidential Election against Hillary Clinton by virtue of the Electoral College.
Both of these seemed to go against “the plan”. We clearly missed something. If so many people could see things from such a fundamentally different perspective, something is clearly missing from how we understand and codify The Good, The True, and The Beautiful. The blind spots in our worldview were revealed through the consequences of our actions.
Something fundamental was unaccounted for in the vision of the European Union, at least in how it had unfolded through the UK. This goes deep. There were many voices unconsidered and unheard, and they used the referendum as a means to communicate that, even if it seemed irrational from an economic perspective. That wasn’t the point.
In the United States, we saw real consequences of demonizing voices and movements which ran opposed to “progress”. We saw just how little trust there was in our institutions. As we still worked within the influence of Uranus in Aries, it is clear that many people in the United States did not see their values being incorporated into the new vision. Again, Aries is immature, boisterous, and impulsive.
These two electoral moments forced us to confront very real consequences in what we believed to be True, Good, and Beautiful.
After the Global Financial Crisis and the Snowden revelations, paranoia and distrust were programmed into our code. We desperately needed transparency, and there was not a reliable institution to establish this in a way that inspired any level of trust, across worldviews.
No one can agree on who or what to believe anymore. Even worse, the arenas we normally used to settle such disagreements were corrupted. If that many people are not with the program, at a certain point, it becomes irresponsible to ask them to “get with it”.
Even if we were headed for some short-term pain, this was for our own good.
Like it or not, we needed Donald J Trump to be elected President.
He illuminated and leveraged fundamental problems in our democracy — he did not create them. We saw ourselves more clearly, and we saw our country and the world more clearly. We cannot fix the problems we do not see. In fact, we are more likely to make them worse, because the solutions we implement will not see those problems, and the unintended consequences will backfire. This is known as the Cobra Effect or the law of Unintended Consequences.
Before we implement solutions, we have to see the problems clearly. When MLK gave his famous speech, he spent 80% of it talking about society in its current state. Why? So we could see the extent of the problem and recognize how we were subtly and unconsciously validating a system of authoritarian exploitation. He needed people to feel an emotional connection to how they as individuals contribute to a serious problem.
Saturn, the always present taskmaster, is our greatest teacher. He points out our shortcomings in a way that exposes the weaknesses we have irresponsibly covered up. He showed us where our quest for Truth has fallen short, and let us know we needed to return to the drawing board in order to create a vision of progress where everyone feels included. He brought into form very real consequences so that we could live with them.
Interestingly, Brexit finally “happened” at the end of 2020, as Donald Trump’s presidency wound down. These two monumental elections cannot really be separated, archetypally. The conditions in each country were unique from each other, yet they nurtured the exact same type of thinking.
Saturn in Sagittarius revealed that what we believe to be true is fundamentally misinformed. The source code for truth and sensemaking has been corrupted. Let’s think of this in terms of Artificial Intelligence. The program can run correctly even if it has been misinformed. This pursuit of truth is operating on either partial programming or corrupt programming — likely a combination of both.
2018–2021 Saturn in Capricorn
On December 20, 2017, Saturn entered Capricorn.
With Saturn in Capricorn, we would expect to see the flaws in those who exercise and hold formal, hierarchical authority. We would see the downsides of concentrating authority and information. We would see the downside to outsourcing our sensemaking and choice-making to someone else, some outer authority. In the Zodiac, Capricorn follows Sagittarius, and this is crucial.
Sagittarius demands we know what is True before it is imposed in Capricorn. How can our power structures demand compliance during a crisis if they are operating on the same corrupted data which created the crisis?
This becomes even more sticky when we see the ways we allow our social structures to become our authority. We prefer to outsource our sovereignty to our “in-group”, which is tribalism.
Between 2018 and 2020, we saw the #metoo movement dismantle our assumptions about who was coercing us. Harvey Weinstein is the head on the proverbial stake, and rightfully so. Several United States politicians, including Senator Al Franken, were forced to resign amidst sexual allegations. Jeffrey Epstein was arrested.
Pathological authority can no longer be tolerated under Saturn in Capricorn.
If you recall, we started this analysis with Pluto entering Capricorn in 2008. We are seeing the dark side of coercion, and Saturn’s arrival in the sign of the archetypal Father reveals that good authority should be built upon a foundation of knowledge and understanding, and with meaningful mechanisms for honest feedback.
There is a difference between respecting a rule and following it out of fear. This dilemma is one of Fatherhood. If you go around telling people what they are or are not allowed to do without really seeing people and understanding the context of their experience, you should not be surprised when their reaction is something like…
Well, honest feedback was given. Trump was elected and Brexit passed. Do the institutions have the ability to integrate the implications of that feedback? What fundamental pieces have our systems failed to account for? Why is there such a disconnect between the authorities that we have and the ones that we want?
Most people do not feel seen or heard, deep down. The system cannot see people as individuals, and this leads to disrespect of the laws. When we agree with them, the rules are fine — necessary, even. When I do not agree, they are unfair or tyrannical
People do not trust that the government, deep down, has a clue what they really care about, much less cares about the same things that they do.
Saturn Pluto Conjunction — January 12, 2020
On December 20, 2017 (the day Saturn entered Capricorn), the United States lifted its ban on deadly virus research, making it legal for labs to manufacture strains of influenza, SARS, and MERS, even though ‘Critics say such “gain-of-function” research still risks creating an accidental pandemic…In addition, there was concern that research into transmissible pathogens, which is published, could be used to deliberately engineer a mutant virus.’
Pluto and Saturn met at 22° Capricorn on January 12th, 2020, astrologically known as Saturn Conjunct Pluto. These two planets meet about every 40 years.
This event has a very strong correlation to the Covid-19 pandemic, and we have seen its effects on our systems of governance and authority. The partial and misinformed belief systems which are the foundation for our systems of coercion have created a crisis in sensemaking and human coordination.
The geometry of conjunctions is interpreted as a blending or intensification of the two energies involved. So, what we see is Pluto in Capricorn intensified, Saturn in Capricorn intensified, and their source code blends together. This is reprogramming and evolving the source code of Capricorn, Pluto, and Saturn.
This is a new evolution of Authority, where we are our sovereign authority. We will use the structures being put in place now to build this new model of sovereignty. Technology will play a pivotal role as we use the global network of computers which power the Bitcoin network to change the game completely and reclaim our money, our time, and our sovereignty.
Of course, sovereignty is a frightening reality for some. Bitcoin allows us to be our own bank, yet a lot of people do not want that responsibility.
There is a true social contract on the horizon, one which demands a conscious choice in order for participation, and is most likely built with Bitcoin.
The Covid 19 pandemic changed the game, changed the rules, and evolved the source code. In many ways, we are starting over, building upon the foundations of what worked in the past, and questioning things that do not work.
Saturn brought the consequences, again, this time to our institutions. We saw what happens when there is zero trust in our institutions and leaders. Imagine if this had been a more deadly virus!
2022–2024 — Lunar Node Squares
The nodes illuminate the importance of polarity and oppositional forces, and they focus on a dialectic that we must balance. In January, the North Node entered Taurus and the South Node entered Scorpio. The nodes always move in tandem, perfectly opposite, and they move backward. The nodes are theoretical points in space at which an eclipse would occur if the sun and moon aligned. If an eclipse occurs, it is always along the nodes.
There is no physical object.
The North Node typically is interpreted as your life’s direction. It guides you back home when you get lost and aligns you with your purpose. In its shadow, it is pathologically compulsive, an obsession. The South Node is seen as your comfort zone, what is deeply familiar. It could be where you get stuck easily, and can also be a necessary wake-up call when we become too drunk on the North Node. Generally, we are called to step into the north node while purifying the south node.
The real power here is balance and a recognition that opposites are two sides of the same coin, powerfully interdependent. Neither side is better than the other. They have certain features that we should account for, and certain circumstances may require us to move towards one side over the other.
If you understand the nodes in your birth chart, you understand the paradox you are here to make peace with. By making peace with this paradox, we can settle into the unknown, allowing a higher order of thinking to emerge. This paradox will emerge throughout your life, and identifying it playing out will give you direction, comfort, and growth.
When it comes to transits, the nodes work in exactly the same way, except that everyone is experiencing them in the same sign, not just according to their birth chart.
The nodes are settling into dynamic square geometry with Saturn and Pluto over the next couple of years.
North Node in Taurus
Taurus is the archetype of The Builder and is symbolized by the Bull. Whenever we hear “slow and steady”, we can be sure Taurus’ influence is in play. Taurus is the second sign in the Zodiac and is best contextualized as a response to impulsive and impatient Aries, the first sign. Taurus reminds us to take things slowly and to enjoy the ride, smell the roses, and give each step the care and attention that it deserves before moving on to the next one.
Taurus has a preoccupation with things that it can see, smell, taste, hear, and touch. Taurus is concerned with things on the surface, and in its shadow, it can be superficial and hollow. We see a journey of self-worth emerge when Taurus is involved. No matter how much we try, we are never satisfied with the material world. Taurus has a tendency to outsource its self-worth to the world around it, whether it is a parent or a group of friends.
As Taurus is a fixed earth sign, this is the most natural sign of money and economics. The bull is the symbol of the New York Stock Exchange, and that is no coincidence. Food and agriculture are some of the other areas of life we associate with Taurus.
So, while the North Node is in Taurus, we are being called to take things slowly and focus on our physical bodies. We must reclaim our self-worth from the people and ideologies to which we have given it away. Appreciate your physical appearance without becoming identified with it and begin building the foundation for your life, one brick at a time. At the same time, we must learn more about systems of food, agriculture, and economics.
South Node in Scorpio
Scorpio is the archetype of the shaman, the therapist, and is characterized by transformation and interiors. If Taurus is on the surface, Scorpio lies beneath. Here we see the dialectic; these two opposites depend upon and define each other.
With 3 symbols, the scorpion, the eagle, and the phoenix, Scorpio is complex, mysterious, and intense. Taurus makes small talk while Scorpio wants to hear about your dark secrets. Scorpio also rules sexuality and death. Scorpio in its shadow is fearful of its own intensity and change. The irony here is that Scorpio is change. Above all, Scorpio fears its own nature and stuffs it away inside its depths, which are vast.
Scorpio becomes attached to its own suffering, comfortable in the darkness, as long as it is able to stay hidden and mysterious. When light is shined on the shadows of Scorpio, the fearful response is that of the scorpion: strike with venom or find another rock to hide under — often both.
When Scorpio accepts its darkness, it transforms into the soaring eagle, willing to look closely and inquire into its own nature, curious and inquisitive. The archetypal story of the Phoenix is one of death, rebirth, and transformation.
While the south node is in Scorpio, we are likely to notice where we are stuck in the past. Scorpio has a nostalgia that can become an obsession. We would also expect to see the parts of ourselves we have neglected or exiled. We will need to dig up some old scars in order to learn the lesson of this transit. We must bring our interiors and exteriors into balance and heal our relationship with our past selves. After all, the interiors are the foundation for the exteriors, and if our foundation is shaky, whatever we build will lack integrity.
Saturn Square Nodes
On April 11th, 2022, Saturn will square the north and south nodes, an influence that will last until about July. Square geometry reveals an urgent crisis. Saturn has been in Aquarius, which rules technology, reform, and rebellion.
Saturn brings consequences and enforces the law of cause and effect. When Saturn squares the nodes in Taurus and Scorpio, we would expect to see the consequences of an imbalance between our interiors and exteriors. Let’s use Ken Wilber’s model of the 4 quadrants, one of the fundamentals of Integral Theory, to explain this in greater depth.
For this, it makes sense to focus on two parts: interior and exterior, also referred to as subjective and objective, the left and right axes. We have highly developed exteriors in today’s world. Science and technology have advanced to previously unimaginable heights. Basically, anyone can take advantage of advanced artificial intelligence and genetic editing.
We have god-like technology available to those who may not have gone through the necessary developmental steps to actualize that technology and wield it responsibly.
Our interiors, conversely, have been neglected. Most people still have no idea how the psyche works, why they get angry or triggered, what to do with intense emotions, and how to manage it when they are triggered. Yet, most people also have a smartphone that employs artificial intelligence that fights for their attention and emotional outrage.
We have neglected internal development. We are told that objective fact trumps subjective experience.
But, according to Wilber’s model, we need all of these developed in a balanced way, and none is better than the other. They certainly serve different purposes.
The piece about Technology is especially relevant, with Saturn in Aquarius squaring the Nodes. We are likely to see the consequences of a crisis in values and meaning, and it is logical that the catalyst for the crisis will be our god-like technology, whether that be how social media use distorts our perception of truth or how a regressive dictator can wield nuclear weapons.
Our interiors have not caught up with the exteriors. We do not possess the requisite wisdom to wield the exponential technology we have actualized, and there will be consequences for this.
What level of wisdom should be required to wield nuclear weapons? How do we program our shared values into artificial intelligence algorithms? What are our shared values?
I would expect these questions to become salient for global problem solvers throughout 2022. Still, with the North Node in Taurus, big, impulsive moves would surprise me. Even with the War in Ukraine starting under this influence, I would be very surprised if it escalated beyond economic and narrative warfare, at a global level, before summer 2023 when the nodes switch signs.
Pluto Square Nodes
In July 2023, the Nodes change signs, as they do every 18 months. They will set up shop with the North Node in Aries and the South Node in Libra. Between March and December 2023, Pluto will square the Nodes as Pluto prepares to finally leave authoritative Capricorn and enter Aquarius, the reformer, the oddity, and the rebel.
I am expecting to see a weakening of our infrastructure and ability to harness natural resources. The foundations built by Taurus will be put to the test by Pluto between March and July. I would expect strain on our financial and food systems, specifically, from an exterior perspective. I fully expect to see Scorpio’s shadows continue and be exacerbated by Pluto, and the mental and emotional health crisis will claim casualties.
North Node in Aries
We covered Aries when we discussed Edward Snowden, Putin, and Trump earlier. When the north node is in Aries, we would expect to see an emphasis on independence and direct action, and we might not be keen to consider the long-term implications of our actions. If this is what is being called for, there must be a need for it, and my interpretation is that the conflict between East and West will escalate to kinetic warfare.
Treaties and agreements could be disregarded completely as individuals, tribes, and countries need to prioritize their own sovereignty and ability to act decisively.
South Node in Libra
Libra is an air sign symbolized by the Scales of Justice. Balance, equilibrium, and partnerships are valued. Libra weighs decisions carefully before acting, while Aries shoots from the hip. Libra is also a skilled mediator and is a natural peacekeeper, as opposed to the Warrior of Aries. Libra’s peacekeeping makes it easily trapped and manipulated by bad-faith actors, too.
This polarity will require careful balance as we move into 2024.
As I said earlier, the south node requires purification, and it is for this reason that I see many of our international treaties and agreements will need careful revisiting if they are not completely shattered. Libra has kept a fragile peace since the 1980s, and yet, peace requires the warrior. We cannot have peace without conflict.
The balance here is between independence and codependence. How do we act independently in an increasingly codependent world?
How can we preserve agency when one person can make a decision that has global consequences?
Pluto in Aquarius — 2024–2044
Many of these big questions will need to be worked out while Pluto is in Aquarius. Aquarius is the penultimate sign of the zodiac and represents the height of human potential. The values of Aquarius are egalitarianism, innovation, technology, reform, and rebellion. It makes sense that after we build power structures in Capricorn, we must then reform them. Pluto last entered Aquarius in 1778, and its transit correlates with the American and French Revolutions.
Aquarius is symbolized by the Water Bearer, and the highest potential Aquarius holds is an enlightened society. If the shadow rules, we see reactionary chaos that espouses revolutionary rhetoric.
Aquarius has a deep love for all of humanity but struggles with personal intimacy and loving the individual.
Of course, we are in the early stages of the Age of Aquarius now, a period that lasts about two thousand years.
The challenge of this next phase will be to reform the structures built by Capricorn without destroying them. Bitcoin is a truly Aquarian technology, designed to harness innovative technology to create more egalitarian systems of governance, finance, and distribution. Aquarius is ahead of the curve and this is an opportunity to use progressive values to build for the long haul, supposing we can decouple progressive values from “progressivism”.
The US constitution was ratified and the First French Republic was elected the last time Pluto transited Aquarius. This was the contract by which The People agreed to governance.
What are the terms by which you would freely agree to governance?
This is the big question we ought to be contemplating right now. Interestingly, both the French and American experiments tried a more decentralized approach before settling on their current structures, and this should be recognized. Decentralization is not a new idea.
We need some centralized decision-making to adapt to the flurry of changes that will occur during this period. We cannot possibly ask everyone to make these choices collectively, nor should we. I should not have any say in geopolitical treaties or nuclear disarmament if I have not become educated.
The next version of democracy will be the blockchain, plain and simple. It’s not ready for primetime yet though. Right now, NFTs are little more than overpriced digital art, but one day they will be merit badges that allow the owner the right to vote on certain issues where they possess expertise because they have scored satisfactorily on a test.
This supposes that we have at least one institution that we can all trust.
In order to get there a lot needs to change. We can imagine what this might look like, yet the experience of that change is impossible to prepare for.
Why should we use Astrology to guide us through the transition?
Astrology is uniquely positioned to help a huge number of people make sense of the changes occurring because of, not in spite of, its perceived weaknesses. Astrology has no centralized authority. No one is really driving the ship. There are influential voices, there are evolving schools, and there is no one body that certifies that someone is an astrologer. This creates unique advantages and, of course, problems.
Archetypal Mythology is unique because, although it is rooted in ancient stories, it is still meaningful to people today. It is this universal applicability that makes astrology totally unique. Sure, astrology is not the only entry point into archetypes. It is the only one that I know of that orders a series of archetypes into a coherent story that repeats itself in different ways infinitely.
These archetypes, and the way that we relate to and embody them, have evolved with us. It’s not a religion, but a system for recognizing what is good, true, and beautiful for us as individuals. There is no doctrine.
There are no churches, mosques, or temples unless you count the Great Pyramids.
We have all been Aquarius, the reformer and rebel. We have all been Cancer, the self-sacrificing nurturer. We have all been Virgo, the humble servant who stands up for the righteous.
We have all fallen from grace. And we have all picked ourselves up again.
If we spend all of our time trying to put Humpty Dumpty back together again, we will suffer.
Those who leave the broken pieces on the floor, grieve them, and move forward as changed people will build the new world.
Andy Hansen is an Actualization Consultant who works with individuals and business leaders to actualize their potential. His work, group events, and retreats integrate the mystical and the mundane. If you’d like to connect and see if Andy is a strong fit as a guide, schedule a free consult here.