Spring Equinox, 20th March 2018, 16:17
(Image: Lisa Michaels)
The equinoxes and solstices are gateway moments. Unfolding their resonance describes the spirit of the time, like a passage of music, that will continue over the next quarter of the year until the next astronomical gateway is reached. That is why they are worth thinking about. They reward our attention.
Mars, ruler of the Spring Equinox, takes its heat and fervour into Capricorn on 17th March, just prior to the equinox, under cover of the darkness of a New Moon. Governance, authority, status: these Capricorn matters have been in the spotlight for a good while already as Pluto moves through that sign, piling high its revelations of power abuse in the work place and public life. Pressure to remake social structures along more responsible and egalitarian lines is intense and will only become more so as Mars pursues its two-month route-march through Capricorn. It conjuncts Saturn at the beginning of April and Pluto at the end, a marker of the closing cycle (begun in 1982) of Saturn and Pluto, and foreshadowing their new meeting in 2020.
The Sun’s entry into Aries (marking the equinox) on 20th March is the moment of daybreak in our northern year. The time of preparation is over; the forces of light and warmth now swell and burst the buds as activity begins to outweigh rest. Whatever we have been fomenting in the darkness of winter – represented in part by the current condition of Mars – can and will now take form in the light.
Chiron is in conjunction with the newborn Aries Sun (in the last degree of Pisces, crossing the threshold into Aries on 17th April). The leader of the centaurs and mentor to heroes, Chiron has been in Pisces since May 2010 and this notable emergence, illuminated by the equinox Sun, gives depth and seriousness to the Aries impulse to be, to do and to become effective. Jem Neal describes Chiron in Aries as expressing the ‘pain of selfishness’ and its powerful presence asks us to find a mature and connected expression of selfhood, one that heals the rift between what the singular ‘I’ wants and what the whole requires. Separative personality consciousness is a massive source of suffering, for which healing arises from consciousness of our deep connectedness with all of life and with our own soul forces.
Mars will be expressing this very dilemma as it conjuncts Saturn (the tyranny of separative consciousness) and trines Uranus (the perspective of the self ensouled). Indeed Mars will be coming to our attention really strongly, not only as the ruler of the equinox and of Aries, but because of the aspects it holds at this gateway moment. It is squaring the Sun─Chiron conjunction, impressing our conscious understanding with its desire for effective action. Such energy is valuable, but we have to know what we are about.
Energy without purpose is random activity. When sustained intent is the basis for activity our lives can be truly vital, authentic and purposeful. Activity that arises out of an awareness of interconnectedness can also be inspired (as is the case for Chiron, coming out of a long journey through the waters of Pisces). Individual expression is the flame that leaps from the collective fire: luminous, illuminating and full of life and heat.
Mars brings a mood of conflict and aggravation to Jupiter’s work (sextiling Pluto from Scorpio) of expediting the current seismic undoing of structures of power and privilege that is going on in the ailing public body. The certainties of how privilege empowers some and excludes others has been experienced forever by those who fall outside its radiant glow; now some of that can be seen from within the circle of light too. Let’s hope we don’t drown in the sea of #butimagoodguy; such responses are failing to appreciate that these problems are historical and systemic, not personal – even where their impacts are profoundly personal.
It is for us now to know what we are seeking to do and to become. If we don’t know what we’re about and are not actively holding intent, nothing can or will come of the opportunities that time brings us. If we don’t get behind our intent, our statements and actions, nothing and nobody else can.