Astrology Column

Belinda Dunn is a professional astrologer, trained at The Temple of Kriya Yoga in Chicago, and has more than 35 years experience. See her bio and contact info at the end of this column.

What's Up? January 2017

Mercury Direct
January 8 @ 4:43 am

Capricorn/Cancer Full Moon
January 12 @ 6:34 am

Aquarius New Moon
January 27 @ 7:07 pm

Brisk, shrill, frigid, winter winds are blowing. A sudden gust takes us by surprise as it sweeps away debris, clears the air, and hurries us to warmth and safety. Instinctively pulling back and inward, this is the season of retreat. A long winter's nap is an opportunity to dream, envision, renew, fortify, and gather courage for the road ahead.

Winter Introspection
Whether you are making your resolutions on New Year's Eve, the New Moon or Chinese New Year, the key word is RESOLVE.

Winter is an ideal time to determine your action plan for the year. As our Sun moves through Capricorn and Aquarius skies, the celestial spheres offer guidance, perspective, perseverance and determination to accomplish any and all goals.

No doubt about it, hostile, controlling and aggressive forces are making themselves known upon the global stage. So, bundle up, surround yourself with loving warmth in the most nourishing and supportive form for you. In this cocoon it is possible to listen to your heart's understanding, and receive clear guidance.

Life is always giving this beautiful gift. It is an expansion of awareness that quickly elevates the muddled and conditioned mind beyond restrictions of culture and creed, time and space.

Planetary Rock & Roll
From the planetary standpoint, the U.S. election is a culmination of very stressful alignments between Uranus and Pluto. In this planetary rock and roll, nothing is exempt from the intensity and necessity for transformation.

Pressing very heavily since 2010, Pluto has served to erupt dark shadows of intrigue, greed, cunning and power. Meanwhile, Uranus leads the charge for freedom. However, the concept of freedom is open to many interpretations depending on orientation and belief.

Now that hidden agendas are on the table for most to see, nothing can hide any longer. While this may feel unnerving, disgusting and disconcerting, it is an important and essential step in uncovering the hidden forces that stand in the way of progress on many levels of our collective experience.

Not surprisingly, with the U.S. presidential inauguration immanent after the most contentious and controversial election in modern history, the planetary picture continues to trigger the Uranus/Pluto upheaval.

Mercury Retrograde Adds to Inner Reflection
The month begins with Mercury retrograde signaling the need for cautious review of previous decisions. In the zodiac sign of Capricorn, the reality of structure and function are being tested. This can show up in the need to organize, manage time, determine goals and plan for the long term.

The basic nature of Capricorn is demonstrated in the body's foundation of bones, joints and teeth. Without this structure, we would be jelly-like, fluid and perhaps amorphous. In social organization, Capricorn rules over the domain of governing structures, business and the flow of commerce.

On an esoteric level, the earth dimension is the soul's opportunity for incarnation. Here the soul encounters the repetitive testing ground whereby the virtues of honesty, integrity, accountability, discipline and commitment are honed and developed for eternal existence. There is a karmic price to pay for ignoring or taking advantage of situations for the advancement of self-interest without consideration of the whole.

As Pluto transits through Capricorn (2008–2024), the entire structure of social organization is being tested for endurance and strength. This is happening on personal as well as national and global levels. An evolutionary upgrade is happening whether we see it or not. However, Pluto tends to be destructive and messy, while Uranus tends to be revolutionary and surprising.

Throws of Change
Kicking off the year, keep a close eye on urges, decisions and circumstances during the weekend of January 7/8. The Sun joins Pluto in Capricorn while Mercury goes direct on Sunday.

These transforming and intense energies come to a boiling point over the next week as the Sun squares a Jupiter/Uranus opposition, and the Full Moon on January 12 continues to expose hidden agendas. Everyone has something to learn. Talk about “draining the swamp” gets up close and personal.

Sun enters freedom loving Aquarius on January 19 while a Mars square Saturn tends to obstruct action and produce obstacles. These are forces that would thwart the rising urges of individuality, independence, self-expression, glory and freedom. This solemn, stern, cold and calculated planetary influence is in effect for inauguration day on January 20.

For the most part of January, Mars and Venus transit through Pisces skies. Along with Saturn in Sagittarius, this combination tends to produce strong emotion connected to idealistic beliefs. It may be tempting to escape into platitudes and ideals, but reality beckons. Escapist tendencies can exacerbate substance abuse for some people, but healthy retreat can be very healing for others.

Behind the scenes of glamour and power grabbing, life goes on. If the United States continues to backslide into the slippery slope of Pluto in Capricorn, the world will go on as is. Currently, there are tremendous opportunities for advancement across many fields of endeavor.

Humanitarian Possibilities Beckon
A rare confluence of Saturn trine Uranus is positively activated by Jupiter. The tendency for grandiosity and entitlement is tempered by real opportunity for breakthroughs in science, technology, education, social organization and consciousness. Instead of building walls, the boundaries between people, and possibly nations, are actually dissolving.

On January 27, a New Moon in Aquarius furthers humanitarian movements, and the realization of, “It's a small world after all.” The celebration of Chinese New Year coincides with this New Moon on a yearly basis. Heralding the year of the Rooster, this strong masculine image initiates a year of intense activity. Arising before daybreak, the rooster loudly and proudly proclaims the beginning of a new day. This wake up call reverberates through the airwaves as a call to action.

As the planetary energies of 2016 dissipate, namely the Saturn square Neptune, the trends of illusion, avoidance, glamour and addiction tend to dissolve. Talk is cheap. Concepts fall short, colliding with the crushing reality for so many of earth's inhabitants and habitat.

A time of reckoning and practical reality, Saturn is now firmly in the 1st house of the U.S. States. It is a maturing and testing time for each citizen, and the country as a whole. With no end in sight of corporate greed or government incompetence, it is tempting to experience discouragement and dismay.

As 2017 begins, it is helpful to remember the big picture and take the long view. No matter what constitutes one's spiritual orientation and practice, each and every being is directly connected with Source. This ever-present connection is timeless. When invoked, this connection can expand our view to embrace history in big strides. Years, decades and centuries flow as each generation brings its unique perspective and gifts to bear upon the greater whole.

Love is Powerful
On the front end of the Uranus/Pluto alignment, at the beginning of 2010, I had an unforgettable dream. At that point, I was unaware that three grandchildren were preparing to join our family, but the message of the dream was simple and clear, “This generation will right many wrongs.” I have considered the implications of this message as all three grandchildren just entered kindergarten in the distressing political climate of the election cycle.

In light of current events, as Bernie Sanders traveled the country, he galvanized the next generation of leaders. Bernie was able to see these young adults as “beautiful,” in their overall lack of prejudice, acceptance of diversity and open mindedness. This is my experience too.

A new world is dawning that is way beyond narrow-minded cruelty, limited belief systems and historical tension. But, this new world can be truly experienced only through the heart. Let those that love, LOVE! Let those that long for peace, LOOK WITHIN!

Heeding the Call
Recently I was drawn to watch the movie “Avatar” from the standpoint of trends and themes. It's all there. . . the military/industrial complex attempting to blindly take over and control nature. After much destruction and turmoil the story turns around, pivoting in a sustainable direction as the main characters meld with nature.

However, it is in calling upon native wisdom and connecting with the natural world that resolution takes place. But, resolution comes with a price, and the natives have to fight back against the forces that attempt to destroy their habitat and way of live.

This is the current message of Uranus, Eris and Ceres in Aries. This zodiac sign initiates transformation through heeding the call. That's all it is, a call. It may be a low and quiet whisper, it may show up as a certainty that rumbles through your entire being. It may be a loud cacophony of lies and dissent that motivates you to arise and take action.

When the urge to participate comes, there are no guarantees. Ask an Aries how many projects he/she started, and how many projects were completed. They will tell you, it is not their task to complete everything. The task of Aries is to get the ball rolling and enthusiastically invoke participation from others.

As 2017 begins, there is a powerful and insistent momentum that is not to be lost in trivialities, and vain pursuits. Extraordinary times call for extraordinary measures. May the coming year be filled to overflowing with gentleness, peace, kindness and compassion for yourself, loved ones and all that you hold dear.

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Belinda C. Dunn is a professional astrologer with over 35 years experience. She is available for your personal consultation. CONTACT INFORMATION: 828-215-2101 cell