Over the last week or two the Eurozone debt crisis has reared its head again, firstly with Cyprus, like Greece before it, having to accept crushing terms to stay within the Eurozone, and now Portugal, a larger economy, having problems; the US economy has slowed down, with less new jobs being created than was expected, and some saying it is due to the cuts that were imposed due to the political impasse in that country; and North Korea is manufacturing a military/ nuclear crisis with no-one quite sure how far they will go. And the latest round of talks with Iran have ended with Iran triumphant about its nuclear progress.
All this as Pluto slows down to turn retrograde (12th April) and begins approaching an exact square with Uranus (its 3rd) on 20th May.
With Uranus-Pluto we expect crisis and economic recession, and the events of the last week or two are the pre-amble to the forthcoming square between those 2 planets (7 of them between 2012 and 2015). This 3 year period is an axis on which the world is turning, moving us from one era to the next, and it is slow and grinding and hard to see the wood from the trees, but the astrology gives us, to some extent, the bigger picture.
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Pluto wants life to move on from one stage to the next, and the dying of the old stage can be painful; and Uranus brings in a shocking, creative, disruptive, awakening element. You put those 2 together in challenging aspect and it’s a rollercoaster, particularly when the Suns of most of the major powers are being aspected. The last time we had Uranus square Pluto was in the late 20s/early 30s, and look at the grinding change and recession we went through then, and that was without the Suns of the major powers being aspected like they are now.
The 30s was the closing square of a cycle – Uranus and Pluto were moving towards a conjunction – so it was about the death of an old world, which the ensuing World War decisively provided. This square, however, is the opening square of a cycle, so something new is being born. I don’t want to place a value on that and say it will be ‘better’ because I don’t think the outer planets necessarily work like that, but it will certainly be different and, because Uranus is involved, there will be a distinctly new element that isn’t just a re-arrangement of the old.
So what is being born? This isn’t astrology now (OK, it’s a bit based in it), it’s just me leaning on the bar venting my opinion. One factor is the world getting more used to being globalised. It’s been on our lips for a good 10 or 15 years now (Pluto in Sagittarius empowered the process). The internet is international, corporations move themselves around the world doing their best to avoid tax, everything is made somewhere else. There was recently a meeting on international tax laws, the first apparently since the 1920s and about time. As China rises, and along with America and the EU comes to dominate world trade, we will probably see an era of increased international law brought about as a response to globalisation.
Power is shifting from the West to the East, that is one of the major changes under Uranus-Pluto, and the western recession – us becoming relatively poorer – is part of that.
Europe looks increasingly to me like it will stay together, but with a more pronounced divide between the rich north and the poor south. We have still only had 2 out of 7 Uranus-Pluto squares, so there is a lot further to go in the European debt crisis. Surely a bigger country will sooner or later face the same savage cuts as Greece and Cyprus. These countries can’t go bankrupt if they want to stay in the Eurozone, their debts are cut, but are still kept at a level that will keep them desperately poor and struggling for decades. That is the level of divide we are likely to see: a southern Europe that is to a large extent crushed by debt by the time Uranus and Pluto have finished, and dominated economically and politically by the north. An empire ruled by Germany and its smaller but still wealthy neighbours. And Britain a close trading partner but politically on its way out of the system.
And America? Well, like I’ve said before, it seems to have a decision to make over the next few years about how it wants to run itself, making itself governable again. It’s been there before. And then it has its 1st Pluto return a few years after that. That should be interesting, though it will be gradual. The US Pluto is in the 2nd house of money and values (money is a value, a big one). Pluto as a planet of death is where we confront our survival: what do we feel we have to have in order to feel we exist and for which we will fight to the death? In a personal chart, it’s the house placement that is important, as the sign is generational. But for a country, sign probably has equal significance.
So the US has Pluto in 2nd House Capricorn. The institutions (Capricorn) that produce wealth (2nd House). The corporation, which as we know has undue influence over the political process in the US. As they said in West Wing, there are 2 things which you don’t want to know how they are made: laws and sausages. So some shift in values here, gradual and some years down the line, just as Chinese corporations start to equal the power of American ones.
The so-called ‘nuclear axis’ is between 8 and 10 degrees of Gemini Sag, and it is very sensitive to transits. It is based on the first man-made controlled nuclear chain reaction. Look at the symbolism: Uranus (splitting) conjunct Saturn (form/matter) brought into significance by the opposition to the Sun. See my previous posts here and here.
As Uranus-Pluto goes through its squares, so does the Iranian (and possibly North Korean) nuclear crisis proceed. But as we come to the end of those squares, so does Neptune begin squaring the nuclear axis. So we will be entering a new nuclear era. Will it be one in which the major powers assert more effective control over proliferation? Or will it be one in which, hamstrung by differences between the US and China and Russia, no action is taken and we have a new era in which Iran is threatening the Middle East with nuclear weapons?