Happy (?) Birthday USA, 2022 edition

art by Linda Mears

Every history has a beginning, a crescendo, a crisis, and then either a breakdown or a breakthrough. This is true for individuals, and it’s also true for countries. The story of the United States is a fascinating one, especially through the astrological lens.

Before we can understand the current situation we have to understand how we got here. Back in 2009 I wrote:

The United States is at an astrological crossroads.  The US progressed Mars turned retrograde last year, and is searching for a new direction.  Pluto, god of transformation, has been challenging the US Midheaven, the point of public perception.  The qualities that gave the US its power over the past 400 years will not work for the next 400, and the nation will have to adapt.  Economic systems are changing and becoming much more tenuous and fluid as they go global.  Traditional social systems are weakening and require a new way of looking at the way humans form families and cultural groups.  As a people we must become more lithe and limber so that we can adapt to the changing collective, or we will not survive the 21st century.  This is not a time to look back and long for the conservative values of the 1950s – those days are over.  There is a new day dawning, and we will have to be ready for it.

Apparently we are not ready for it, and the return of Pluto to its place in the U.S. chart is drawing attention to the deep fissures that divide the country. But let’s take a birthday look at the chart of the United States and see what is in store for us […]

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By |2022-07-07T07:38:04-04:00July 3rd, 2022|Politics|9 Comments

Sunday Memorial Day musings in a time of chaos

No poetry or inspiration today, friends – looking for the crack where the light gets in which I usually try to do in difficult times can’t change the basic facts on the ground here in the United States. The culture of the country is based on guns, and it’s hard to imagine that this will change. “The Shot Heard Round the World” began the American revolutionary war. Guns were needed to subdue the native peoples in order to fulfill the Manifest Destiny of the Sagittarian ascendant given to the signing of the Declaration of Independence (Sibley chart).

The roots of gun culture in the United States seems to be less about sportsmanship (really, how sporting is it to use an assault rifle to go deer hunting?) and more about fear of the “other” – the native peoples, the freed slaves, the rise of the Mexican and Black minorities to claim more equality. “This use of a friend/enemy distinction to crystalize a political identity is a well-known authoritarian technique, popularized by fascist theorist Carl Schmitt in The Concept of the Political (1932). According to Schmitt, sovereignty is the power to decide who is an enemy, a category of person against whom it is justified to use lethal violence. ” read more in this excellent article.

I have written many posts after these mass shootings, including this one in which a commenter said “Ask someone who was protecting their business or home during the LA riots why someone might need an ‘assault rifle’.”  All of this fear is very good for business, and even though the clout of the National Rifle Association may be weakening, its symbolism is still strong as we […]

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By |2022-05-30T08:17:05-04:00May 29th, 2022|Politics|13 Comments

It’s here: The US Pluto return

art by Jerry Lo Faro

The US Pluto return culminates this week. Some of you are familiar with the term “Saturn return” – an event which happens for everyone at age 28-30 and then again around 56-60 when Saturn returns to its position by degree in the natal chart. These are very Saturnian events – times when we need to face responsibilities and hard facts as we transition into the next phase of life.

The Pluto return occurs when Pluto returns to its position in the natal chart. Pluto takes 244 years to orbit the Sun so humans do not experience Pluto returns, but nations often do.

The Sagittarius ascendant in the US chart reflects the expansive tendency of the American empire which is probably the single thing that will be its undoing.  Like other empires before it, the expansion of the national identity (Sagittarius ascendant) through ideas like “Manifest Destiny” which inspired pioneers to trek across the undeveloped terrain and do battle with the native peoples and Mexicans and Canadians who were already living on the land. . . .

Since Pluto entered the contracting sign of Capricorn, however, the cracks in the foundation have become more evident. Pluto deals with issues of compulsion and use and misuse of power, and in the US chart Pluto lives in the second house of money. With Pluto in the second house of money and finance, the American shadow is a dirty little secret – an obsession (Pluto) with the power that money can provide (second house).  The persona of the country is the sunny Jupiterian/Sagittarian nature of optimism and faith that everything will turn out fine, but the Plutonian shadow of greed hides in the darkness.

Between 2014 and 2017, Pluto […]

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By |2022-02-20T17:48:32-05:00February 20th, 2022|Politics|10 Comments

Sunday inspiration: Something sacred is coming this way

art by Thomas Blackshear

In honor of the US Pluto return this week, when transiting Pluto returns to its place in the US chart (a planetary configuration which has been building for quite some time), I offer these words from a spiritual leader of Native American descent. The philosophy of karma isn’t typically found in western culture, but Newton’s Law, that for every action there is an equal and opposite reaction, reflects the idea that for every action there is a consequence.  The seeds that are sown will grow fruit – will we plant seeds which grow love and tolerance, or will we plant seeds which grow hate and fear?  This is the choice of free will. 

Meanwhile, the world is changing all around us and I found this piece of writing to be spectacular in the face of it. I hope you too will find it inspirational!


“Something sacred is coming this way.

That is how my ancestors would have said it. In the midst of all this turmoil and confusion, when we cannot clearly see the path before us, when we feel trapped in a situation we cannot control, then I believe the wise elders of my holy heritage would climb to the high place of the heart, draw the circle of reason and faith around them, and stand to sing their prayers into the open sky of the history to come.

They would not shrink into a corner afraid, but rise up to catch the first light of what was coming into being all around them.

We are living in a time of emergence.

We are the witnesses to a great renewal.

The world is full of the fear of birth and change, but that transformation will […]

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By |2022-02-19T08:00:00-05:00February 19th, 2022|Inspiration|5 Comments

The transit of Neptune and the US chart

I’ve been writing a lot over the past few years about the return of Pluto to its placement in the US chart which is getting near but will not culminate until 2022-2024.  However, there is another and more insidious planetary aspect at work right now in the US, and that is the opposition (180 deg) aspect between transiting Neptune and US Neptune.  This aspect officially began in May 2021 when transiting Neptune reached the exact degree of the opposition, but the opposition began to tighten back in March and April 2020 when Neptune began its steady approach to the exact degree.

I look at the outer planets as transformational forces; they inspire change that can be rather transpersonal in nature.  At its best, Neptune urges us to transcend the day to day humdrum reality and escape into a more brilliant and beautiful experience, one of inspiration and magic and creative spirituality.  At its worst, this urge for escape and transcendence leads to addiction and delusion.

click to enlarge

I have readers on all sides of the political spectrum, and it’s a weirdness of the current reality that people on both sides think that those on the other have fallen into delusion.  The deeper we get into this Neptune opposition, the more that will be true and the harder it will be in the US to understand what is true and what is false.  The second exact hit of this transit is coming up August 21, 2021 and although the last exact hit won’t take place until March of 2022, the transit will be in full force as Neptune is hardly moving between now and then.  We are in for a […]

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By |2021-08-14T07:29:57-04:00August 13th, 2021|Politics|17 Comments
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