The Sun will reach the midpoint of Aquarius on Friday. According to Zhongxian Wu (in his book The 12 Chinese Animals), the “JieQi” system of Chinese cosmology considers the new year to begin when the Sun reaches “the celestial longitude of 315 degrees” — which corresponds to the middle of Aquarius in western astrology.
Interestingly, the middle degree of all four “fixed” signs (Taurus, Leo, Scorpio and Aquarius) is also meaningful for western astrologers. That’s because the Sun in the middle of a fixed sign corresponds to the exact midpoint of the current season.
Hence, on Friday, we will be precisely halfway between the Capricorn solstice (when the Sun first entered the cardinal sign Capricorn) and the vernal equinox (when the Sun next enters cardinal Aries).
For many ancient traditions, and most modern astrologers, the tipping point of any given season is an auspicious time. Even today, such “cross quarter” days still receive vestigial, albeit trivial, recognition. Halloween (correlating closely with the Sun in the middle of fixed Scorpio) is one example. Upcoming Groundhog Day observations will represent yet another instance.
There is a reason cross-quarter days were sacred to our ancestors. If you have to grow your own food (as has been the case for nearly all human beings until relatively recently), keeping track of the seasons is absolutely vital. Now, even though the cultural context has changed, the implications of where the Sun is remain important.
When the Sun enters a cardinal sign (Aries, Cancer, Libra or Capricorn) all beings on Earth are connected through a common experience of the Sun. The Capricorn solstice in December, for example, featured both a sunrise and a sunset taking place as far south as they will ever get.
Every day since the Sun entered Capricorn, the Sun has risen and set farther and father north — regardless of who you are, or where you live. Similarly, the upcoming Aries equinox will find the Sun rising precisely east and setting exactly west, with a corresponding equality of day and night for everybody.
It follows, then, that cross-quarter days resonate unavoidably with the turning of the seasons. As with any other halfway point, the theme is one of both perspective on the past and anticipation of the future. This year, the astrological context of the Sun at the midpoint of Aquarius implies something even further: the importance of how you think and what you feel.
As of today, all of the traditional sign-ruling objects except for the Sun and Saturn are in, or will soon be in, cardinal signs. The Moon enters Aries today and will remain there until late Thursday or early Friday (depending on your time zone). Mercury is in Capricorn. Mars has been in Aries since the weekend. Jupiter is in Libra. Finally, before Friday is over, Venus will be in Aries too.
Throw in Uranus (continuously in Aries for nearly six years now) and Pluto (continuously in Capricorn since 2008), and it’s plain to see that the sky is full of cardinal energy. This energy corresponds to both new beginnings and common connections.
As the Sun’s emblem of consciousness moves toward the point of essentially bringing all of that cardinal energy to fuller awareness, the Moon (correlating with your feelings) and Mercury (having to do with how you think) are playing especially important roles. The Moon, for its part, is waxing. With every passing night this week, the illuminated portion of the Moon will grow larger and larger, implying feelings getting stronger and stronger. Jupiter opposing the Aries Moon indicates even further amplification.
In the meantime, Mercury is moving faster by the day. A fleeter Mercury implies a more active mind. A rapidly reactive mind is great for quick thinking, but not so good for careful and patient reflection.
You don’t need to look very far into current events to see how the combination of reactive thinking and strong feelings are playing out. As this week goes on, so likely will the trend. Fortunately, when it comes to how you think and what you feel, you have a choice.
Being aware of your choices when it comes to sharing your thoughts and feelings will be especially important this week. In the days to come, every rush to judgment will implicitly have the potential of initiating events that could easily get out of hand before they run their course.
While there is little or nothing you can do with regards to the decisions others make, you explicitly have it within your power to regulate and direct what you think and how you feel. In doing so, you can support (rather than undermine) both your intent and your interests.
It is almost certain everybody will not be exercising the same degree of care. Some will set unfortunate precedents. Others will sabotage themselves. You, however, need not be among them. If you have simply retained what has happened for you since the third week of December, you will have the information you need to keep your perspective solid and sound.
With a firm grasp of the immediate past, you will be prepared to go a crucial step further. For it is those who concentrate their energy on what they can change who will be most effective when it comes to both anticipating and defining seasons yet to come.
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