black ice and a long history

I wanted to take a look at the astrology of the next New Moon. It feels really heavy to me at the moment, and the New Moon is the next thing happening (in just under a week), and it will be under this next Moon’s watch that the last exact Uranus-Pluto square of the entire series happens, so I thought it would bear looking at.

aquarius new moon 2015

Let’s edge our way round this and see if anything starts to make sense.

Mercury gives us our mental climate, and it’s nicely aspected here, which is just as well. Aquarius is well suited to channel Mercury’s energies with clarity and a healthy detachment, and it’s supported by a Saturn which is quite at home in Sagittarius. That’s pretty good for sceptical, scientific thinking – quite level. Mercury also gets support from Venus and Mars near the end of Pisces, so there is energy and grace in the mix too. It’s true that in Pisces it is a bit too drippy to ideally mesh with Mercury in Aquarius, but it softens the Aquarian edge with its aesthetic sense, and warms it up in its own fishy way. Saturn is meanwhile trining Mars and Venus from Sagittarius, giving their energies more grounding, toning down the emotionalism of Pisces, and making things rather more practical and capable of manifestation.

Over the other side of the chart we can see Juno opposing Mercury and trining Saturn (again). Juno has connections with committed relationships, spouses, soul mates and marriage, and she is in queenly Leo here. Oppositions can bring some tensions and some projections, and have a tendency to manifest personally as “other people” or outside situations if we haven’t integrated the energy in question. Here it seems to be highlighting a quality of relationship and commitment, and it would not be a bad time to work on improving the quality of committed relationships. Saturn in Sagittarius gives the capacity for work and the testing of traditions and assumptions, and open minded Mercury in Aquarius is well supported by a potentially empathetic and romantic Venus-Mars in Pisces. There is a capacity for messy scenes here if we forget to consider another person’s perspective, but there is also plenty of potential for growth in relationships.

On a less personal feeling note, Vesta in Aquarius is trine the North Node in Libra. In a phrase, this is well disposed to recognizing the sacred in relationship, and in a way it feels like a recognition of the sacred trust that is involved in understanding and remembering relationship at this time. Not just personal relationships, but relationship in general. Not that it suggests easy answers, but that this is where the growth is, and it does hit right through to what we guard and tend as of central value to ourselves.

One of the points of concern in the chart in the quincunx between Pholus (in Sagittarius) and Sedna (in Taurus). I’m a long way off being any kind of a whiz on the subject of Sedna, but I do feel it relates to our species as a whole, and its inter-species relationships (it seems like our fame preceded us, at least as far back as the Inuit myths). Pholus has the key phrase “the lid comes off”, and is associated with small actions that have large, unforseen consequences, and the general shit happening theme, the trivial and indeed well meaning turning out to be part of a much bigger story. Pholus also apparently has connections with the phenomenon of viruses (and epidemics?), toxins and poisons, DNA and gene research (and modification?), but is also prominent in the charts of health professionals. Part of Pholus’ myth involves his keeping of an intoxicating wine (which he innocently releases with chaotic effect), and I would suspect that he is linked to the effects of things such as psychedelics – Albert Hoffman couldn’t believe that the minute amount of LSD he was exposed to in his research project had the consciousness altering effects that it did. Pholus’ discovery also coincides with the popularization of Chaos Theory, and the well know idea of the butterfly effect fits perfectly with Pholus’ themes. The quincunx aspect is a relationship between two energies (Pholus and Sedna here) which appear to plain miss each other in conventional terms, but which do in fact form a relationship. So this is something which is conventionally invisible and unexpected, and so not easy to “get right”, but an individual could do it.

Between Pholus and Sedna I feel this represents both an opportunity and a danger. On the one hand, we are probably collectively fucking up with Nature in ways which even our pessimists don’t understand yet, because the unbalanced causal relationships aren’t yet grasped. On the other hand, individuals have the opportunity to hack into a greater intelligence and actually learn from it, and possibly help our ship right itself. The word “hack” sounds too aggressive here, as there is a distinctly introverted, self-inflicted feel to Pholus’ story, but it is a kind of hack.

Let’s now come to the centre of a New Moon chart: the Sun and Moon.

The Sun and Moon are conjunct on the very last whisker of Aquarius. One more minute of arc and they would be in Pisces. What almost seems to pull them into Pisces? Nessus, within its first degree. The three are closely conjunct across the cusp.

I think this is the central motif of the chart. Nessus has been given the phrase “the buck stops here”, and it has an association with abuse across generations, though I do not believe Nessus’ themes are simple, they confound morality in their rawness, and tend to have roots lost in hidden histories and untold stories. Nessus’ myth involves murky backgrounds, rape, killing, revenge and curses. Yet Nessus brings things to an end, even long after his own death.

In this chart these planets are joined by Neptune which also conjuncts the Sun and Moon from Pisces, and sensitizes them. Sun and Moon are in unyielding Aquarius, fixed air, idealistic and new as the Moon is here. Yet they are brought face to face with a story in Nessus that demands an ending, in that old sign of Pisces, the last sign, the sign of culmination, transcendence and also the dregs, the forgotten, the condemned. Not only is Nessus in Pisces, but Pisces’ ruler Neptune is there behind him. It seems almost like a reckoning. This cannot remain secret any longer, and neither can it go on. The buck stops here.

And there again we have a square from Saturn to all this group, from legal and philosophical minded Sagittarius, which is not really equipped to deal with the kind of rawness that Nessus and Neptune in Pisces involve. Saturn-Neptune combinations are more likely to focus on guilt and reparation, and the discomfort of authority placated or undermined. Too likely, in principled fashion, to try to sweep things under the carpet again, or find a scapegoat, as too would Aquarius if it could, albeit in a different, and more political guise. Not easy, because it won’t go away, whatever it is; child abuse scandals, religious violence, FGM, boy soldiers, people we threw away the key on, all the way down to the suffering, scared animal we are. It can’t go on, but it can’t be stopped without facing all of the story in every last blood soaked, buried detail. That’s not a dignified job, nor one that anyone can do without something beyond humility. Bringing it to an end would have to be more than voluntary.

Our best chance is that Mercury. It’s further back in Aquarius, tempered, and softened by that empathic if messy Venus-Mars conjunction in Pisces, and it can translate between Saturn here and the world that Nessus and Neptune are in, but it still has clarity. So maybe it can stop things getting buried, and perpetuated, again. Remember that Mercury acted as psychopomp as well, between worlds, the living and the dead.

And as I said, the last exact Uranus-Pluto square is coming on this Moon’s watch. It’s the background to so much somehow, and it’s themes in some ways are reflected in the juxtaposition of the new Moon in Aquarius with Scorpionic Nessus. Here we see that Pluto conjuncts Ceres in its square with Uranus. We might have some concerns for the healthiness of food supplies here theoretically, but I am just struck that it is Pluto and Ceres, the major protagonists in Proserpina’s story, whether it involved accident, adventure or abduction. There is also a sextile to Chiron in Pisces, which underlines a healing opportunity. Who knows how many real stories there are here?

The Uranus-Pluto square will not end its influence in one short month, but it is now drawing to a slow close. By the eventual end of all this, we should have found some real questions about fundamentals, concerning healing, and freedom, and life, at their very deepest. Not since the 1960s will we have had this opportunity, albeit in a different way, though it is all dependent upon the work we do with what is left. We get a help in this chart from a retrograding Jupiter in Leo which is trining Uranus. A reflective capacity to dream wide rangingly and futuristically, but with personal heart.

This has been once in a generation, and it will affect more than one generation for sure.

Don’t panic – just keep breathing.

collage made from "Giambologna, ercole e il centauro nesso" by I, Sailko [GFDL ( or CC BY-SA 3.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons, and public domain image of hematospermia, solarized.

collage made from “Giambologna, ercole e il centauro nesso” by I, Sailko [GFDL ( or CC BY-SA 3.0 (, via Wikimedia Commons, and public domain image of hematospermia, solarized.


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