The Low-Down on the Far-Out

New Moon in Sagittarius, December 2015

Chart for the New Moon in Sagittarius
Chart for the New Moon in Sagittarius

'Twas the night before Christmas, when all through the house
Not a creature was stirring, not even a mouse;
The stockings were hung by the chimney with care,
In hopes that St. Nicholas soon would be there...
~ Clement Clarke Moore, A Visit from St. Nicholas

Dec.11 – NEW MOON in SAGITTARIUS (19:02 of Sagittarius)

So: Have you been naughty or nice...?

Here in Western culture, December is nothing if not dominated by the Christmas season. As the Sun wanders through Sagittarius leading up to Christmas, many of us have visions of sugar plums and Santa Claus dancing in our heads.

We make our wish list, check it twice, and hang up our stockings by the fireplace to catch all the goodies. We let our imaginations wander, savouring the anticipation of blessings we hope will grace our lives. Life will be so much richer, more exciting, more satisfying, more promising, if we can just have what's on that list.

In many Western cultures, this image of generous abundance is projected onto the mythical figure of Santa Claus, a jolly old man who joyously bestows gifts on boys and girls who have been good all year. If you've been nice, you get nice things.

At least, that's what we were led to believe as children.

And the kids who were deemed naughty? Tradition claimed they would get a lump of coal in their Christmas stocking ...if they got anything at all. I'd never heard of anyone who awoke Christmas morning to an empty stocking�but why take the chance??

No wonder this can be such a high stress time for children, past and present, young and old. Depending on how strict or demanding your parents were in how they wielded the will of Santa, you may have lived in peril of crossing that naughty/nice line, which surely was drawn with the charcoal you would receive in place of cool stuff. And most of us passed this along to our kids and grandkids as we moved through adulthood.

For some reason, good ol' Santa never seemed to get a bad rap as a result of all the charred bits supposedly left for naughty children; nor for the anxiety he put us through, worrying what the verdict would be on Christmas morning. Perhaps that's because parents and other authority figures took the hit, having acted as Santa's minions and continually reminding us about the consequences of not conforming to Santa's standards.

Here's what we know about Santa. He sees you when you're sleeping. He knows when you're awake. He knows if you've been bad or good. I think he's with the NSA.
~ David Letterman, Late Show with David Letterman, December 18, 2014

Okay, you're right. That's a pretty bah humbug attitude about something that's meant to be fun, and for the most part was and is a source of joyful anticipation for children. Go ahead � call me cynical and we can blame it on the current Saturn-Neptune square. ;-)

On the other hand, scrutinizing the Santa Claus experience does show us an uncharacteristic side of the jolly old elf. From a certain perspective, Santa is a kind of Jedi mind trick used by parents to control their young children's behaviour. ("These aren't the presents you're looking for..." "You want to go to your room and rethink your life...") A practical necessity for parental sanity, perhaps, but not without its shadow side. By the time those children became old enough to see through the manipulative propaganda, they were also old enough to realize their parents pulled the same strings as Santa: misbehave at your peril! No good deeds, no goodies.

As we grow into adulthood others take the place of Santa and parents, and following their ideals are seen as the ticket to a better life. We all want to improve our fate � who wouldn't? � and yet, there's no guarantee we'll get what we want. Like Santa, life is a gamble � you make your best wish, behave in a way that you hope won't sabotage the results, cross your fingers and hope for the best.

In many ways, this is how belief works. You buy your ticket without knowing for sure what if anything will come of it. All you have for sure is hope. There's no guarantee you'll get what you're looking for, nor that it won't wind up being a big disappointment in the end. But we still have to try, right? The question is: what is required of us in order to even buy the ticket for that lottery?

The main reason Santa is so jolly is because
he knows where all the bad girls live.
~ George Carlin

Sagittarius shows what kind of ticket you are drawn to buy and what you hope to gain if your number comes up. This sign is also associated with religion, so when you read "lottery ticket," think prayers, spells, affirmations, or any other way of setting your intentions in motion and inviting something new into your life.

Sagittarius is what you believe in, aspire to and invest yourself in spiritually. By spiritually I mean anything that deepens or enhances your sense of meaning in life and enables you to feel you're a part of it. It doesn't matter whether this includes a belief in monotheism, polytheism, atheism, pantheism or hedonism. This is about feeling connected to something greater than yourself that puts you and your life in a broader context.

Everyone has Sagittarius and Jupiter somewhere in their chart, and we all do something with them, no matter what our beliefs are. We all have the human need to feel our life has a higher purpose; that it means something beyond the day-to-day rhythm of routines, duties and events. Sag and Jupiter form the compass in your chart that shows where and how you look for that meaning and what fulfilment of that meaning might look like to you.

However, like Santa, Sagittarius results are far from guaranteed; they might not even be likely or possible. And yet, even if we didn't get the things we wanted in the past, we still dutifully set out the equivalent of milk and cookies in anticipation that our Sagittarian Santa will be generous with us the next time.

When it doesn't come true as we hoped, we typically try to understand why. We might blame it on someone or something. (Santa hates me. Or Mom wrote to Santa and told him I'd been bad. Or Santa's elves went on strike and couldn't make enough toys.) But whatever the reason, we usually kept the faith and went through the whole ritual again next year.

Even after we finally saw through the Santa hoax, we still keep some of the belief that we need to behave if we are going to get the goodies. Just because we discover it was really Mom and Dad woofing down the cookies and milk, we come to realize that the deal still stands � misbehave and risk the consequences.

What keeps us going despite failure or disappointment is faith. It is what keeps you believing the dawn will follow the dark night, even if previous dawns were gloomy or stormy. Unfortunately faith is also what can keep you locked in a dark room, still believing the dawn will appear if you just wait long enough.

But how long is long enough? We usually think that keeping the faith is a good thing and giving up is bad. And yet, there are times when it's better to abandon that kept faith if it isn't panning out.

Sometimes you just can't get there from here. The recipe you're using might simply be incapable of creating the bread you're trying to make. Or you're not ready because you lack certain skills, knowledge or understanding, or the pieces of the puzzle aren't ready to come together yet. Or maybe you're struggling with mixed feelings that need to be resolved first � I want the goodies that Santa could bring but I just can't bring myself to conform to what's expected of me to get them.

This is when giving up is a positive thing that actually means letting go. Rather than just being an ending, it also frees up your time and energy so that a new, more effective, more satisfying dream can be cultivated.

The question is: where is the line between keeping the faith and giving up? It's different for everyone, and it will be different for each aspiration you have. This is one of the questions you are invited to explore over the coming lunar cycle.

If you always do what you've always done,
you'll always get what you've always got.
~ Henry Ford

The New Moon in Sagittarius offers a chance to contemplate what you believe, what you believe in and why. What does it do for you? How is it a source of well-being, fulfilment or encouragement for you? Alternatively, how does it bring struggle or disappointment into your life? Are you getting the results you hoped for? What's still missing? Why do you think your dream hasn't produced results yet?

Jupiter is the planetary guru of Sagittarius, so its placement and interactions with other planets takes on extra importance. In many ways, we tend to see Jupiter like a planetary Santa Claus � the bringer of benefits that appear like magic around our spiritual hearth. Jupiter transits are often assumed to be Instant Positive Karma, granting the just reward for all the good deeds we have done. We have only to wait, have faith and watch for the signs of opportunity to cross our path.

Naturally, there's no such thing as an all-good or all-bad planet, sign or aspect. Everything has its advantages and disadvantages. Jupiter can indeed bring opportunities that, when acted on and cultivated through hard work, can bear delicious fruit down the road. Or Jupiter might bestow the rewards of hard work already done, kind of like Santa bringing presents to little girls and boys who have earned them by being good.

Dear Santa cartoon

With Jupiter, the down side is about too much of just about anything. Too much faith, for instance, could mean we have to close down our minds in order to avoid questioning what we believe to be true or resist considering new information that contradicts that truth. An overdose of Jupiter can keep us cranking the slot machines at the casino even when we've already lost a small fortune on unsuccessful tries to win the jackpot. Jupiter may be the hope that keeps us going through the hard times, but sometimes it's better to cut your losses and try something else.

The Jupiter part of us can also want to believe something so badly that we simply won't accept any other perspective, opinion or idea. That's a sign that the belief is meeting some need in us that we're afraid couldn't be satisfied in other ways. It's not necessarily a bad thing to need what a belief does for us, but if that obscures our ability to question or challenge that belief, or think beyond its borders, then it could become a problem.

Still, this is Jupiter we're talking about � the planet of optimism, wisdom, spirituality, faith and confidence.

What could possibly go wrong?

Better to end this dream before it becomes a nightmare.
~ Rachel Cohn, Nick & Norah's Infinite Playlist

Say hello to Saturn in Sagittarius! And Chiron in Pisces!

Saturn brings meters and machines and measuring equipment and statistical analysis software. He's here to do a reality check to see if what we believe is true can withstand the test of time, facts and effectiveness. Saturn is still recovering from his recent square to Neptune on Nov.26 and has been sensitized to the prevalence of manure being spread around by Neptune and is determined to do the smell test on everything he comes across.

On the other hand, Jupiter is currently in Virgo (Aug.11.2015 to Sep.09.2016). Jupey feels a bit like he woke up inside a ball of yarn and must unravel it gradually and carefully lest he tighten the knots that are already constricting his freedom and potential. He has a radiant vision of the beautiful sweaters, scarves and shawls he could make with that yarn, but Virgo insists he must be specific about what he wants to create and he must follow the instructions to the letter. No wandering all over the map exploring different stitches, colours and patterns unless it's done in a purposeful, orderly way.

Although not joined by an aspect, Saturn is in Jupiter's sign and therefore Virgo's crisp directives are passed along to him. Saturn understands the need for structure and clarity all too well, so he is extra inspired to demand that all Sagittarian dreams be funnelled through his manifestation filter to strain out the improbable from the possible and the presumptuous from the promising. The New Moon in Sag isn't exactly jubilant about that, but is willing to be tolerant as long as things don't get stuck in the mud.

Santa Claus has nothing to do with it," the latke said.
"Christmas and Hanukah are completely different things."
"But different things can often blend together," said the pine tree.
"Let me tell you a funny story about pagan rituals.�
~ Lemony Snicket, The Latke Who Couldn't Stop Screaming: A Christmas Story

Then there's Chiron in Pisces which opposes (180�) Jupiter and squares (90�) the Sun and Moon, all of which form a stressful T-square aspect pattern. While the optimistic, joyful, Jupiterian side of you is feeling its wings being clipped by Saturn, Chiron is mirroring back the Ghosts of Christmases Past.

T-square: Juiter opposite Chiron squared by New Moon

You might be feeling the struggling side of Sagittarius�looking wistfully at all the goodies you wish you could have, but Santa's budget just won't stretch that far. In that case, Chiron could be sending you into a sad reverie of remembering when Santa was able to be a bit more generous.

This is where that Sagittarian dilemma could present itself. Do you hold fast to the old standards by which you judge how good Santa is being to you? Or do you give up the old dreams and expectations and look for new ways to define what makes a worthwhile holiday season for you?

It's possible Chiron could bring up old sadness, discomfort or unsatisfied longing from days gone by, reminding you of what you're missing this year. This might take the form of missing a loved one who can't be with you. Or feeling deprived due to a strict budget this year. You could be feeling depressed because other circumstances in your life aren't coming together as you'd hoped. Or you might be surrounded by friends, family and loved ones, but be unable to appreciate it for some reason.

Chiron encourages you to think outside the box for creative solutions to problems that often don't have a clear or complete solution. Jupiter in Virgo, on the other hand, insists on definite solutions that can be carried out with reliable results�something that just isn't in Chiron's bag of tricks right now.

Don't let the perfect be the enemy of the good.
~ Based on a quote from Voltaire

The Sun-Moon conjunction in Sagittarius (a.k.a. New Moon) is at the apex of the T-square, striving to rise above the squabbles over hardship, pain, struggle and perfectionism from the Jupiter-Chiron opposition. The New Moon energy could take on an exasperated edge, feeling fed up with all the bickering and just wanting to either transcend it and leave it all behind or else find a point that's "good enough" so it can move on to whatever comes next.

Once again, this presents the challenge of: keep the faith or let it go? There's no right or wrong answer to this that fits everyone. You have to decide what feels right for you. Saturn is there to remind you that whichever path you choose, you will experience the consequences of that choice, so choose wisely according to what will feel right down the road as well as in the here-and-now.

If you decide it's time to let go of your expectations and wishes for something that seems out of reach for now, it's important to find something else to fill the gap. For example, how about being Santa to someone else who's in the same dilemma? You might volunteer at a local shelter or place of worship. Find someone else who's feeling disconnected and invite them over to share what you both have together. Or, be your own Santa and create a delightful holiday season that's full of all your favorite things: great food, concerts, movies, events, walks, decorating and more.

More rapid than eagles his coursers they came,
And he whistled, and shouted, and called them by name:
"Now, Dasher! now, Dancer! now Prancer and Vixen!
On, Comet! on, Cupid! on, Donner and Blitzen!
To the top of the porch! to the top of the wall!
Now dash away! dash away! dash away all!"
~ Clement Clarke Moore, A Visit from St. Nicholas

Once you make your choice�or even in the process of making it�you may find that the fog of ambiguity lifts quickly and you know just what you want to do and how to do it. This is due to an exact Mars-Uranus opposition (180�) in the Cardinal signs of Libra and Aries, respectively. When these two planets eyeball each other from across the solar system, sparks can fly! Unusually fast reactions, jumping to conclusions and feeling like there's nowhere to stand that the ground isn't haphazardly buzzing beneath your feet.

T-square: Mars opposite Uranus squared by Pluto

Pluto squares both Mars and Uranus (90�), forming a second T-square aspect configuration in the New Moon chart. This is yet another instance of the Cardinal Square, with Mars making it into a T-square throughout December (square Pluto Dec.06, opposite Uranus Dec.10). If you've wondered why it's been an unusually intense month, now you know why!

This energy is tightly woven into the Sagittarius New Moon, bringing some implications. For one thing, Mars and Uranus form a Wedge configuration with the New Moon. Once you feel that Sagittarian inspiration to move in a particular direction, restless, jumpy Mars will be only too happy to oblige and will sprint off in whatever direction you aim him. Therefore, it's best to pick and choose which Sagittarian perspective you want to aspire to�keeping the faith or letting go�because once it comes into focus, your action or reaction is likely to move fast.

The upside of this is that you can make some exciting progress in a positive direction if you stay aware of what is driving you to move forward. The downside is that you might just make a difficult situation worse by over-reacting to premature assumptions and conclusions.

Listen to the mustn'ts, child. Listen to the don'ts.
Listen to the shouldn'ts, the impossibles, the won'ts.
Listen to the never haves, then listen close to me...
Anything can happen, child. Anything can be.
~ Shel Silverstein

Here's one last piece of the puzzle. Jupiter is conjunct the North Lunar Node, which further amplifies that visionary potential and the yearning to rise above troubles through excellence and precise, practical action. Jupiter makes three conjunctions with the Node in 2016: Jan.23, Jan.29 and Jun.20. In fact, Jupiter and the Node are fused together less than a degree apart from Jan.08 to Feb.14.

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Jupiter along with the Node also feature prominently in most of the New and Full Moon charts from January to March next year. This gives the current Sagittarius New Moon cycle a lot of significance. It suggests that the path or paths you decide on this month will be played out over the next few months. Another reason to take a close look at that cliff edge before leaping over it.

And yet, Sagittarius is nothing if not about learning and cultivating understanding. So, even if your choices wind up disappointing you, discovering why it turned out that way and why you chose it to begin with are likely to give you some very valuable learning. It might feel like Santa left a lump of coal for you, but you can actually do a lot with coal that's extremely useful (which will make the Virgo side of Jupiter very happy).

Jupiter isn't finished with Chiron yet either, with two more passes of the opposition to go: Nov.03.2015, Feb.23.2016, Aug.12.2016. So, the divine discontent that might come up during the current lunar cycle could return again next year in order to give you a chance to work through it some more. Therefore, if you get through December and feel like you haven't made much progress with disappointment or wistful longing for easier days gone by, don't be hard on yourself.

This is a deeper process that is meant to be cultivated gradually, and what you wind up learning from it could be very different than you're expecting. Give it time, have some faith in the process and be willing to be taught by that process. If you feel you have to give up on a dream, make sure you are open to a higher perspective that helps you understand why.

And knowing that you can choose between these paths, and determining which one is right for you at a given moment, is called wisdom. Welcome to Sagittarius.

And laying his finger aside of his nose,
And giving a nod, up the chimney he rose;
He sprang to his sleigh, to his team gave a whistle,
And away they all flew like the down of a thistle.
But I heard him exclaim, ere he drove out of sight—
�Happy Christmas to all, and to all a good night!�
~ Clement Clarke Moore, A Visit from St. Nicholas


I wish all of my readers a very joyful holiday, whether you celebrate one of the many festivals at this time of year or whether you are simply caught up in the cultural current of it all. Enjoy the cavalcade of lights. Let some of that peace and joy rub off on you. And find a corner of it all where you can contemplate, appreciate and illuminate your precious place in the Universe.

Happy Solstice, everyone!

To give you a break for the holidays, I am taking 15% off all Astrology Reports until December 31st. These Reports make awesome gifts that won't break your budget. Most of these reports are uniquely formatted by me by hand, using images and colours that make them a joy to receive and a pleasure to read!

Even better, my prices are in Canadian dollars. That means most of you outside Canada will get an extra windfall discount due to our abysmally low dollar right now. For instance, if you're in the US you'll pay about 35-40% less in US dollars! And if you're in Canada you don't have to worry about the exchange rate eating a hole in your wallet. My Report prices will be going up in the New Year, so now's the time to take advantage of the Holiday Discount and lower prices.

Check out my wide selection of Reports, Combo Packages and Art Chart pages!

Dec.14 – Sun square Jupiter (22:17 of Sagittarius/Virgo)   (Dec.15 in AU)

You may be inspired to expand far beyond your usual boundaries during this time, although this may or may not work in the way you hope it will. It can be a time of challenge, when you decide that now is the time to move beyond your current horizons and make the ultimate push for something you believe will bring you happiness, fulfilment and prosperity. How successful you are will probably depend on how prepared you are for what comes next. Your judgment and your ability to see things objectively and realistically can be a little "off" during this transit, since your hopes and ideals might distort what is actually possible. It can be easy to overestimate the envisioned results, or you might underestimate the amount of work necessary to sustain your dream and prevent it from being just a flash in the pan. Try to avoid being overconfident and making promises you can't keep (including to yourself).

Dec.14 – Mercury sextile Neptune (07:12 of Capricorn/Pisces)   (Dec.15 in AU)

Your mind is very open to imagination, dreams and compassion under this transit, with a little applied effort and focus. This can be a very creative time, when ideas flow like a magical river. It can also be easy to get caught up in yearning and fantasizing about your hidden wishes, although it is possible to channel this into creative expression. (e.g., writing poetry, dancing, wistful music, singing in the shower, whatever!) The possible disadvantage is that you might want so much to reach a state of inspired intuition, magical outlook and effortless communication, that you are willing to be deceived rather than fall short of what you are hoping for. Listening sympathetically to others' problems may come easily now, and you are more likely to get a compassionate response from others about your own problems. However, it may also be difficult to draw clear and firm boundaries with others, since you are more susceptible to the emotional gravity of others. It is ultimately a time for optimism, hope, creativity and intuition, although it's wise to keep at least one foot on the ground.

Dec.17 – Venus sextile Pluto (14:33 of Scorpio/Capricorn)

Close one-on-one relationships with people (close friends, lovers, partners of all kinds) could possibly benefit by being taken to a deeper level now, through creatively combining balanced harmony with deep connection. Just be careful that intimacy and bonding don't go over the top into obsession or domination. There is a brief opportunity now to become more authentic in how you relate to those close to you and how you establish a balance of power with them. The trick is to do this without trying to suppress, control or overpower the other person's interests. Financially, it is a time when you may have an opportunity to profit in your dealings with banks, insurance companies, taxes, and other institutions that deal with collective money.

Dec.18 – Sun square North Lunar Node (26:21 of Sagittarius/Virgo)   (Dec.19 in AU)  ("What's a Lunar Node?")

When the Sun squares the Lunar Nodes, your sense of purpose and identity appear to be in conflict with the lessons you need to learn in life. It may feel like you're forced to take a detour around your direct route to your destination (whatever that might be). This may only be true on the surface � if you look deeper at the situation (or possibly in retrospect), you'll probably find that your sense of self is actually helped by the benefits that you are able to get on that detour, which would have missed if you hadn't been diverted from your original path.

Alternatively, you might be confronted by a conflict or stressful dilemma that you usually resist or flail against. This may be an opportunity to explore a deeper level of your experience and feelings. Perhaps there is fear or resentment or defiance behind your reaction. This is a chance to try on a different perspective and respond in a different way that can help you move through the situation instead of just being blocked by it.

When the Sun squares the Nodes it is sometimes called "Moon Wobbles," which is a bit of a misnomer. The Moon itself doesn't wobble or even necessarily interact directly with either the Nodes or the Sun. Rather, the Moon part of us (the inner, feeling, intuitive, sensitive part of us) may feel a bit "wobbly" or unsteady when the Sun squares the Nodes. The "Moon Wobble" effects are said to build and dissipate for up to 10 days before and after the Sun-Node square is exact.

Dec.19 – Venus trine Chiron (17:09 of Scorpio/Pisces)   (Dec.19 in AU)

Healing and rebalancing are possible now, especially in the areas of relationships, finance, resources and values. Any problems that have persisted in these areas lately could benefit from an influx of helpful and healing resources now. Relationships and interactions of all kinds can benefit now, since it can be easier to see the beauty and value in others whom you might usually dislike or feel ill at ease with (or they with you). Negotiations and strategic efforts to resolve conflicts may go smoothly now, especially when you balance the results in everyone's interests. You may also be able to attract what you need to heal your wounds (physical, psychological, spiritual, etc.). Like it says in the "Serenity Prayer," you may now find it a bit easier to accept that which you cannot change, while finding you make progress with the things you can.

Dec.19 – Mercury conjunct Pluto (14:37 of Capricorn)   (Dec.20 in AU)

Deep insights and passionate communication are possible under this transit ...although, so is speaking more forcefully than you intend to about things that require a bit of delicacy or discretion. This can be a new beginning in understanding the deeper motives and dynamics of what is happening in your life, although this could happen with great intensity or obsession. The light can finally start to go on in the darker corners that have eluded you. Although what you see there might be both illuminating and disturbing, it is ultimately something you can grow from, which can transform your mental outlook into something more meaningful and resilient. This is a time when you can start to shed and leave behind old worn out perceptions or ineffective forms of communication. You also have an increased ability to take thoughts, ideas and information and transform them into something healing ...or wounding. Choose your words carefully and mindfully. Writing down your thoughts and ideas to capture the energy of this transit can help you gather the deeper qualities.

Dec.19 – Mercury enters the Shadow (14:54 of Capricorn; until Feb.14.2016)  (Dec.20 in AU)   ("What's the Shadow?"  Read my articles about Retrograde Cycles.  Read my article about Mercury Retrograde.)

Mercury is now "in the Shadow" � the area of Zodiac where it will later go retrograde in about 2� weeks time. During its retrograde cycle, Mercury travels through the same span of the Zodiac three times (called the Shadow). The first time through, it is going in direct motion (moving forward), then retrograde (looks like it's going backwards), and then direct again. This means there is a more extensive process of development and change involved with things that Mercury influences�ideas, thoughts, frame of mind and mental focus. It also concerns the collection, exchange, analysis and organisation of information. All forms of communication are also affected. This includes not just talking, but also email and snail mail, the Internet, the media in general, books and magazines, as well as public transit (buses, trains, etc.) and neighbourhoods.

The situations developing over the next couple of weeks (leading up to when Mercury actually goes retrograde) will likely require further research, deeper consideration and adjustments to unexpected discoveries over the next couple of months. Expect changes in your plans, increasingly disrupted communication, and new information coming to light that may not fit conveniently into your plans. It's wise to leave lots of extra time to do things, to plan future projects and get to wherever you're going. Patience is a valuable quality during this time. If you must make important decisions during this time, try to build some flexibility into your plans to allow for later changes�or if possible, you may want to delay final or irrevocable decisions until well after Mercury goes direct.

Here are the key dates of this Mercury cycle (for North American Eastern Time):

Dec.20 – Mercury square Uranus (16:34 of Capricorn/Aries)  (Dec.21 in UK, AU)

Flashes of insight can show you new clarity but you might not like the answers you get, since they could disturb your logical perception of what's what. You might get some news or learn come information that shakes you up in some way. This isn't necessarily bad, since this may be necessary to open your mind to something you've been resisting. There's a Higher Truth here that wants to be told (by you or to you), but the way it's phrased can make a big difference in the reaction. There is a risk of "shooting off your mouth before your brains are loaded," as the saying goes, and impulsive or reckless communication and ideas could create more problems than they solve. It will probably help to listen inside yourself first to discover what you really need to say, and then figure out how to say it in a way that doesn't cause unnecessary damage. Strive to shine a light of truth without blinding anyone with it.

Dec.21 – Mercury sextile Chiron (17:11 of Capricorn/Pisces)  (Dec.22 in AU)

Your mental focus and communication could get an injection of healing energy under this transit, as long as you are prepared to put some effort into getting it. Your spirits can become uplifted now, from seeing a light at the end of the tunnel or from finding a light that guides you along the path in front of you. It will not, however, make the tunnel or the path go away; you'll still have to walk the walk. But your mental perspective can become more accepting of inconsistencies and frustrations under this transit, which can alleviate a lot of stress and make the journey a bit smoother. Mental struggles and critical "self-talk" may find some reconciliation and acceptance that brings peace of mind. You have an increased ability to find the right words and understanding to help others with their problems, by providing insightful feedback. To get the most out of this transit, aim to find a mental outlook and communication style that can tolerate contradiction without having to eradicate one in order to justify the other.

Dec.21 – Happy Solstice! Sun enters Capricorn (until Jan.20.2016)


Ottawa, Canada and
Washington DC, USA:

Dec.21, 2015, 11:47 PM EST

Dec.22, 2015, 12:47 AM AST

London, UK:

Dec.22, 2015, 4:47 AM GMT

Sydney, AU:

Dec.22, 2015, 3:47 PM AEDT

Happy Solar Return to all Capricorns! And Happy Solstice to all of us! When the Sun enters Capricorn each year, it marks the Winter Solstice in the northern hemisphere (longest night) and the Summer Solstice in the southern hemisphere (longest day). While the Sun is in Capricorn, we have the opportunity to explore our connection to the earth (Capricorn being an Earth sign) in a physical way. Whether you are bundling up to survive a cold winter, or unwinding after the summer heat, or getting down to business as the landscape blooms in "downunder" summer splendour, there is something very manifest and substantial about the experience of Capricorn. This energy calls on us to get real in whatever we are doing – to bring structure, responsibility and discipline to whatever we do. It is a time to work on our "containment." Not in the sense of suppression, but in terms of defining the boundaries within which our growth can flourish down the road, and keeping our impulses from inconveniently spilling over the edges of those boundaries. Sometimes that means cutting back in certain areas in order to focus your energy and make room for new growth. Sometimes it means having to delay gratification and reward until you reach a certain point of progress. The Capricorn rule of thumb is: if you do whatever is necessary, the rewards will come.

Dec.24 – Venus sextile Jupiter (22:53 of Scorpio/Virgo)

There is an abundance of creative inspiration, material enjoyment, feel-good pleasure in the air! Your luck and opportunity to attract money, love, resources and self-esteem are high right now. It may be relatively easy to attract the people, possessions and opportunities you want or need, but you'll still have to work to get them. On the other hand, your eyes may be bigger than your stomach (as mother would say) and you might be tempted to charm, flirt or bluff your way through a situation more than usual. There may also be a tendency to self-indulgence. These are not necessarily bad things, but it's probably wise to remember to use this energy to enhance your best judgement, not override it.

Dec.25 – Mercury returns from Out of Bounds (22:10 of Capricorn; until Jun.28.2016)  (Dec.24 in HAST, AKST, PST, MST, CST)   ("What does Out of Bounds mean?"   "What is Declination?")

Mercury has been Out of Bounds (OOB) since Nov.27 and now returns within the bounds of the Sun's declination. An in-bounds Mercury is generally easier to work with, where your thoughts, ideas and awareness works more constructively with the world around you. You might find you have new ideas picked up while Mercury was OOB that you now are able to put into practice. If you've felt somewhat liberated by the OOB period, it might be a bit uncomfortable to feel simply "normal" again. On the other hand, if you were feeling a bit ungrounded or out of focus during Mercury's OOB period, coming back in-bounds could feel somewhat reassuring as your brain may find it easier to grapple with ideas and process experiences. Words and thoughts might fit more comfortably into what society regards as "normal" and as such, life may start to feel a bit easier to navigate.

Next Update:  FULL MOON in CANCER - available by December 25, 2015.

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