Image by Gerd Altmann
Horoscope: March 16 - 22, 2020
Astrologer Pam Younghans writes this weekly astrological journal based on planetary influences, and offers perspectives and insights to assist you in making the best use of current energies. This column is not intended as prediction. Your own experience will be more specifically defined by transits to your personal chart.
Highlighted Aspects for This Week
All times listed are Pacific Standard Time. For Eastern Time, add 3 hours. For Greenwich Mean Time, add 7 hours.
MON: Mercury enters Pisces
TUE: Mars conjunct Pallas Athene
THU: Sun sextile Saturn, Sun enters Aries (Equinox) 8:49 p.m. PDT
FRI: Mars conjunct Jupiter
SAT: Mars square Eris, Saturn enters Aquarius
SUN: Mercury sextile Uranus, Venus sextile Neptune, Mars conjunct Pluto
THE ENERGY WAVE we have been riding continues to build this week. This particular rollercoaster will ultimately reach its highest crest in early April, when Jupiter and Pluto align in Capricorn.
If we can set fears aside, and stand back to take an objective astrological view of current events, it is startling how clearly we are seeing the effects of the Saturn-Pluto alignment in Capricorn. It also makes sense that everything is exaggerated (including fear) now that the giant planet Jupiter is involved, too.
I WROTE last week about Saturn-Pluto manifesting as circumstances that feel outside of our control, and we certainly have that. We also are in the midst of a reality check (Saturn) concerning social systems we have relied upon (Capricorn). Thus, we are becoming more aware of where those systems are dysfunctional and in need of renovation (Pluto).
According to The Rulership Book, by Rex E. Bills, the planet Pluto rules viruses. So, it is not necessarily a "surprise" that we are dealing with an outbreak of a virus as part of the Saturn-Pluto effect. And, with Jupiter and Pluto nearing their alignment, it makes sense astrologically that the situation is blowing up out of proportion. We've dealt with viral outbreaks in the past – most recently, the H1N1 flu "pandemic" in 2009 – but I can't remember a time when a flu scare caused an entire state to close school doors for six weeks.
THE ISSUE for each of us personally may be about paying attention to where and when we tend give our power away. We might find ourselves, like Dorothy and her friends in the palace of "the great and powerful Oz," shaking in our shoes whenever the news ribbon goes across the bottom of the TV screen, citing latest statistics. And, we might then allow that triggered fear to become our master, controlling our thoughts and emotions.
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But what happens when we turn off the news, relax the "fight or flight" response, and tap into our intuition? What does the voice of our higher self say about the current situation, and our overall well-being?
In his latest e-newsletter, Josh Bigelsen (of the Bigelsen Academy) reiterated why it's so important to find a relaxed state, especially if we notice any signs of illness:
""Fear puts us in sympathetic mode, which is 'fight or flight.' The body cannot heal in sympathetic mode. We heal in parasympathetic mode, which is 'rest and recuperate.'"
So, when we pause in meditation or relaxation, quiet our minds and our bodies, and soften the fear, we are actually doing far more to support our health and well-being than if we were to spend the day scouring all the surfaces of our homes. (If you're like me, you'll be very pleased to know that one of the most important things we can do for our own health is relax, put our feet up, and remember or imagine pleasant times ...)
MARS ALIGNS with the asteroid Pallas Athene on Wednesday. Athene was the Greek goddess of healing, wisdom, and strategic planning, who had the ability to perceive patterns and utilize them to solve problems.
I've been gratified to see Athene so strongly involved in the planetary activity of 2020, since her influence represents our capacity for finding solutions that work. Her alignment with Mars this week is our first opportunity to see how some of that influence might manifest.
Going forward, Athene continues to be a powerful influence in our global affairs, as she is in close proximity to Jupiter and Pluto each of the three times that they align in 2020.
FOUR OTHER SIGNIFICANT planetary events are on the calendar for this pivotal week: the Aries Equinox, Saturn's first ingress into Aquarius, and the Mars-Jupiter and Mars-Pluto alignments.
In Western astrology, which uses the tropical zodiac, each time the Sun enters a cardinal sign (Aries, Cancer, Libra, and Capricorn), we experience a change of seasons. When the Sun enters Aries on Thursday (at 8:49 p.m. PDT), it marks the beginning of spring in latitudes above the Earth's equator and autumn in latitudes below.
The chart drawn for the moment of the equinox is said to be the "birth chart" for the next three months, showing us what to expect during that period. The equinox chart contains the stellium (group) of planets in Capricorn, so we'll continue to work with many of the themes that we're already familiar with.
But, it's exciting to see that Athene, Mars, and Jupiter are all very tightly aligned in the equinox chart. Hopefully this means that Athene's wisdom and ability to find new creative solutions will be magnified (Jupiter) and will inspire courageous action (Mars). And, with the Sun aligned with Wounded Healer Chiron in the equinox chart, potentials for healing are strongly woven into this next time frame.
SATURN takes 29 to 30 years to travel a full circuit of the twelve zodiac signs. This time around, Saturn enters Aquarius on March 21, dips back into Capricorn from July 1 to December 17, and then remains in Aquarius until March 7, 2023. (The last time the Ringed Planet was in Aquarius was from February 1991 to January 1994, with a one-month test flight into Pisces May 21 to June 30, 1993).
Aquarius is associated with social equality, individual freedoms, nonconformity, humanitarianism, and idealism. Over the next three years, Teacher Saturn will be testing humanity in these areas.
Recalling how this influence manifested in the early 1990s, we may see similar developments:
- The denial of personal rights causing a revolt (Rodney King and the LA riots)
- The effects of too much detachment and separation ("I don't want to get involved")
- Working together to achieve humanitarian goals (the United Nations established humanity, neutrality, and impartiality as the three basic principles of humanitarian aid)
- Social/political progress (dissolution of the Soviet Union, a new democratic constitution in South Africa)
- Technological advancements (introduction of the WorldWideWeb and expanding usage of html language)
We will want to watch for evidence of these themes as we near the end of this month. At that time, Mars will act as a triggering influence when it enters Aquarius on March 30 and then aligns with Saturn on March 31.
BRINGING US BACK to the current week, Mars aligns with Jupiter this Thursday and with Pluto next Sunday (March 22). Mars is a powerful energizer; when it comes into contact with other planets that are already highly activated, we tend to experience their effects even more profoundly.
The Mars-Jupiter alignment is certain to further exacerbate the fears and heightened responses to perceived threats. And, with Mars aligned with Pluto, we are likely to see even more proclamations and more controls being put in place by people in positions of authority (Capricorn).
There are many tools to help us through these times. I've posted a couple of videos on my facebook page, created by my friend Elsie Kerns, that walk us through some tapping exercises to release fear and build resilience. (See the bottom of this article for some of the videos by Elsie.) And just stopping wherever you are, whatever you're doing, and paying attention to your breathing, can be a great way to interrupt the fear response. It's amazing how shallowly we breathe, or even stop breathing altogether, when we're under stress.
And remember that the body wants to heal. Humanity wants to heal. One of our main tasks in both causes is to calm the fear response and open our hearts. As Dr. Peebles recently said, channeled through Summer Bacon:
"You can transform the world around you through love, which is, absolutely, the only and the greatest healer of all, and THAT'S your power."
FOR THOSE who are tracking the Moon's aspects to the planets now in Capricorn, here is this week's list. We are likely to feel more caught up in the current dynamic around the times of these aspects.
Since the Moon will be Capricorn, all of these are conjunctions:
- Moon-Mars: Wednesday, March 18, 1:32 a.m. PDT
- Moon-Jupiter: Wednesday, March 18,3:47 a.m. PDT
- Moon-Pluto: Wednesday, March 18, 7:53 a.m. PDT
- Moon-Saturn: Wednesday, March 18, 5:48 p.m. PDT
IF YOUR BIRTHDAY IS THIS WEEK: This is a year of many opportunities, when you can achieve new levels of healing, strength, and empowerment. You will need to take certain steps to reach these goals, but once you put in the effort, you will be assisted on many levels, and in sometimes magical ways. Along the way, there may need to be some changes in certain relationships, especially if they have been based on any form of rescuing, martrydom, or self-denial. Be clear about the true definition of unconditional love, which is the ability to hold the energy of love under all conditions. This is much different than taking on someone else's problems, which can shift you into a place of fear, and may enable them to continue to define themselves as victim. Remember that love is the opposite – and the antidote – to fear. (Solar Return Sun semisquare Venus, conjunct Chiron, sextile Saturn, sextile Pluto)
For previous weeks of the Astrological Journal, click here.
About the Author
Pam Younghans is a professional astrologer, editor, and writer. She lives in a log home northeast of Seattle, Washington with her beloved animal companions. She has been interpreting charts professionally for over 25 years. If you are interested in an astrology reading, e-mail [email protected], or leave a message at 425.445.3775. For more information about NorthPoint Astrology offerings, please visit northpointastrology.com or visit her Facebook page.