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Previous Months Forecast

WHAT’S UP – January 2024

Astrologer Belinda C. Dunn

Mercury direct

January 1 @ 10:08 pm

Capricorn New Moon

January 11 @ 6:57 am

Leo Full Moon

January 25 @ 12:54 pm

As weeks, months, and years begin, only to quickly pass, picture a calendar in the wind, one page after another flying off, lifting up, spiraling into the atmosphere. Each page peeling off, almost too fast to comprehend, this is the image for 2024. Overall, the planetary energies are fast-moving, compelling, astonishing, hard to grasp, difficult to make sense of. Keeping up with the rapid pace may be head spinning at times, but in most instances, progress is needed and necessary, exhilarating and welcome.

Let’s start with the most impressive page turner of all, Pluto’s transit into Aquarius. 2023 was the preview as Pluto entered Aquarius on March 24, only to retrograde back into Capricorn on June 11 for the remainder of the year. However, Pluto returns to Aquarius this month, January 20. But once again, Pluto will retrograde back into Capricorn for a final review during autumn months, re-entering Aquarius on November 19, 2024, where it will remain for the next 20 years. All this to point out, the slow, orderly, evolutionary and transformative nature of Pluto.

Orbiting in the far reaches of our solar system, Pluto is the planet of collective consciousness. Affecting generations, Pluto’s action is to expose and breakdown what is no longer relevant. Since 2008 Pluto has been in Capricorn, drilling down, both literally and figuratively, into the very structures that hold society together. Dependence on fossil fuels is first and foremost. Cumbersome laws and regulations have brought progress almost to a standstill. Mistrust of authority is at an all time high while enormous financial and corporate interests compete to wield the most power. Globally, nations are grappling with tyrannical leaders attempting to exert control over the masses. The list goes on . . .

Already apparent, the transition into Aquarius is toward technology and science. As Pluto in Aquarius begins to take hold, major advancements are already in the making. The next 20 years will bring humanity face to face with an interconnected global society. The effects of technology will be exposed as detrimental and dangerous, but also amazingly constructive and life enhancing. In its pure expression, Aquarius is socially conscious, egalitarian, androgynous, and futuristic.

Energetically, this is quite a shift, especially considering the heavy, earthy nature of Capricorn, and the light, airy nature of Aquarius. To get a feel for the differences, consider what it takes to move earth. Bound by gravity, and immovable without the right equipment, earth takes an enormous amount of effort to transport and relocate. As for air, a simple exhale can move the leaves on my houseplant, and thank goodness for the circulation of heated air throughout my home on this cold winter day.

How does this translate to current affairs? For eons, people have mined the earth for its riches, but extreme dependence on fossil fuels is threatening species, habitats, air quality and human health. During the next 20 years, humanity will look to the skies. The most rapidly developing energy sources are solar and wind technology. From flying personal vehicles to space travel, it’s hard to imagine what is in store for future generations.

In astrology, air is the element of communication, connection and community. The air signs of Gemini, Libra and Aquarius quintessentially revolve around people and human interaction. The technology is already in place for rapid, almost instantaneous, dissemination of information, innovation, inventions and education. This will empower the masses, both locally and globally, to step up and participate more fully in the collective destiny.

One of the major trends for 2024 is Jupiter entering Gemini on May 25. Activating and harmonizing with Pluto in Aquarius, Jupiter gives an extra boost of confidence, optimism, opportunity and good fortune. Across a broad spectrum, many projects can really take off in rapid succession. For too many years, conditions have demanded steady fortitude to just get by, but 2024 is a tipping point. Mass movements of darkness and destruction have had their way, but current trends indicate masses of people mobilizing for goodness, light and planetary awakening.

January gets off to a fast start as Mercury in Sagittarius goes direct on the 1st. As mentioned in December’s article, Mercury retrograde provided a pause to rest, dream, imagine, and tap into reservoirs of inspiration. By the Capricorn New Moon on January 11, the next steps for manifestation are visible, and together with Mars entering Capricorn on January 4, there is a return to practical matters along with a pervasive sense of no time to waste in getting back to business and tasks at hand.

A standout dynamic in the New Moon astrology chart shows competing factors between responsibility to self and others. There may be a stark contrast between obligations and real responsibilities. This leads to a review of actual priorities vs. freedom and autonomy. The New Moon is exactly square the lunar nodes in Libra and Aries, therefore many relationships are under the microscope. In some instances there are no easy answers, but the trend encourages independence and clear boundaries.

In its annual cycle, our Sun leaves Capricorn and enters Aquarius on January 20. This day rings a bell as it is the same day Pluto enters Aquarius. Thus, both Sun and Pluto are in exact conjunction at 29 degrees Capricorn first thing in the morning, and by evening they have transitioned into Aquarius. This is a day to watch for portents and omens of future trends, personally and collectively.

This powerhouse of a conjunction is summarized by astrologer Robert Hand, “In general it indicates intense experiences that do not allow you to stay at the level of surface manifestation. You will really have to get involved in whatever you do today, and the results may be quite powerful. Pluto relates to the forces underlying all experience and leading to fundamental evolutionary changes from within. The inevitable power of these changes produces the major occurrences in the world – growth, evolution, decay and death, as well as rebirth and regeneration.”

Understandably, events on one day can’t define a single transit of this magnitude, but the energies roll into the next work-a-day week of January 22 – 26. There are two main astrological events, a Full Moon on the 25th, and Uranus going direct 26-27th. Let’s take them one by one.

First, this Full Moon carries specific themes of the Aquarius/Leo polarity. With Sun and Pluto firmly in Aquarius skies, the Moon is transiting through Leo in opposition to this conjunction. Any opposition brings contrast, and possibility differences and separation. Heartfelt and dramatic expression is the hallmark of these signs. In essence, Leo is more single minded and solo in its creativity, and Aquarius is group creativity. Aquarius knows that not all problems can be solved by one person, but generally solutions involve a group, a tribe working in unison with a common purpose.

This lunation can also surface the downside of Aquarius, namely extreme detachment, alienation, isolation and disconnection from the warmth of human contact. A very real threat, technology is playing an enormous part in both isolating people, but also bringing people together. One of the primary characteristics of Aquarius is the tribal instinct, and the inborn need to experience a sense of belonging. In fact, in many cases, this instinct is as powerful as the instinct to survive. One of the big challenges of Pluto in Aquarius will be maintaining emotional connection and thriving in an increasingly technologically driven society.

Additionally, the planetary ruler of Aquarius is Uranus. This mighty and extraordinary planet has been retrograde since August 28, 2023. Going direct on January 27, Uranus is known for its unpredictable, unusual, “out of the blue,” and turnaround manifestations. The archetypal wheel of fortune is spinning, and no one knows where it will land. But in the moment, it is advisable to watch the trends, and take the pulse of progress. The action of Uranus is to undermine the staid and outdated while offering innovative solutions to the problems that plague humanity.

This is a trend of positive momentum, because the same day Uranus goes direct, Mercury conjoins Mars in Capricorn in trine to Uranus in Taurus. This combination of planetary factors is decisive, blunt, definitive, and bottom line real. At some point, the bill comes due. This trend will continue to have substantial impact for the remainder of January, setting the tone for 2024.

Additionally, Venus is in Capricorn providing extra grounding in the manifestation of practical plans as well as long term projects. Words commonly associated with Capricorn are accountable and responsible. Since 2024 begins with a strong emphasis on these character traits, be on the lookout for a widespread reckoning of gigantic proportions, individually, collectively, globally.

In conclusion, a summary of Pluto’s transit through Capricorn is in order. Starting in January 2008, this year was monumental in the candidacy and election of the nation’s first black President. The autumn months were particularly historic as enormous financial institutions collapsed like dominoes. To avoid catastrophe, the government was forced to intercede and bail out the banks. Not only are the repercussions still in play, but it further undermined trust in authority and government.

Initially, Pluto’s action exposed massive greed and corruption in the financial system. Then it started digging deeper to expose misuse of power and authority in high places, in particular, the mega wealthy top 10%. Meanwhile, leaders pandered to the masses, selling a version of reality for their own benefit. This has led to a collapse of truth and trust in governments and public institutions. Since Pluto breaks down what is no longer relevant, where does that leave society? What are the lessons to be gleaned, and where do we go from here?

While there are numerous implications, too many to site in this short article, Pluto’s transit through Capricorn has provided a crash course in corporate, financial and government systems. On a daily basis, the news spews out words such as, “autocracy, socialism, fascism, communism, theocracy, plutocracy.” It’s all about power, who has it and how to get more. But, rising to the surface with increasing awareness is the word, “democracy.” Democracy, while far from perfect, is emerging in a new light with more curiosity and appeal. Yes, fissures in the structure have been exposed, but this is the first step in remedying the malady.

For those that question, the system has deteriorated to the point that election workers are bullied and terrified to show up and serve. Neighbors are afraid to disclose political affiliation. Families are torn apart with ideological fanaticism. People stare into screens only to be programmed, polarized, paralyzed. This is not sustainable.

Most importantly, democracy is a system that requires education and participation. “Of the people, by the people, for the people,” means just that. Pluto’s transit through Aquarius has great potential to awaken and mobilize the masses for the welfare of all in this vast and interconnected web of life on planet Earth.

Belinda C. Dunn is a professional astrologer with over 40 years experience. She is available for your personal consultation.

belinda@astrodelight.com; 828-215-2101www.astrodelight.com