Subscribe to our mailing list

* indicates required

The Wheel of Light

Monthly Newsletter - January 2016

The New Year begins with challenges coming from planets in mutable signs. The mutable signs are contemplative. They are oriented to learning and sharing knowledge and wisdom with others in various ways. Mutable signs don't necessarily have an agenda, although they do function best when working within a system. Sometimes they can become so identified with the system that they become dogmatic in maintaining a certain point of view, which limits the potential to continue to learn. For example, Saturn is in Sagittarius. Saturn likes things to be formal and structured. There are rules to be followed and expectations to be upheld. Sagittarius is a sign that is oriented toward higher consciousness growth. This could be in an academic field or in a system of philosophy or theology. One of the problems with Saturn in Sagittarius is a tendency to be rigid in defining one's own point of view while judging or restricting anyone else who doesn't share that perspective. The dogmatic Saturn in Sagittarius can get stuck in a limited degree of understanding and fail to continue to expand.

Systems can be useful for mutable signs because they provide parameters to signs that are otherwise quite adaptable to whatever the strongest external flow of energy happens to be. For example, Neptune is in Pisces, a planet and sign that are infinitely compassionate. This combination can be pulled into someone else's drama and either be overwhelmed by the emotion of the situation or feel called to heal or fix it. This can lead to patterns of social self-sacrifice or at least self-undermining choices and behaviors. In the positive sense, people with strong Neptune or Pisces influence can be drawn to healing, often forms of healing mental or emotional problems. As a therapist, for example, they have clearly defined limits and boundaries that prevent them from either taking on the suffering of their client while simultaneously being able to truly help the client to learn how to help themselves.

An effective system can be something external, such as an academic or healing system. It could also be something that is external but altered to fit a person's needs. For example, Sagittarius and Pisces can both be oriented toward spiritual growth. They could choose a system of meditation to help them achieve their goal. But they could also choose a form of meditation and then tweak it to fit their needs or their life style.

One could also create a useful system for oneself. For example, Jupiter is in Virgo, a sign that likes to function is ways that are precise and logistical. Creating an effective daily routine can enable one to get everything done that needs to be done as efficiently as possible.

This month, planets in the mutable signs are lining up in a T-square. This means that two planets are in opposition (180 degrees apart) to each other (Jupiter in Virgo and Neptune in Pisces). They are each squaring (90 degrees apart) Saturn and Venus, both of which are in Sagittarius. The Jupiter-Neptune opposition is interesting because they are the co-ruling planets of Pisces. This can set up a dynamic that can impel us to be open to others, relating to them in accepting, compassionate ways. We could also be quite idealistic, which could lead to be taken advantage of. The shadow side of idealism can be criticism, whether of self or others. We should be careful this month to not get bogged down in endless reductive criticism that can essentially block choices or actions altogether.

Both Virgo and Pisces can be drawn to a system of healing, whether of ourselves, other people or the environment. Oppositions can be useful in providing a sense of direction. This month is a good time to allow oneself to focus on what needs to be healed or at least refined in our lives.

The square is an aspect of inner tension. Saturn in Sagittarius can respond to the openness of Jupiter, Neptune and Pisces with clearly defined constructs that can prevent one from being too idealistic and taken advantage of. If it's too strong, expressed in an off-center way, it can prevent the natural tendency of mutable signs to develop consciousness altogether. Especially with Saturn conjunct Venus our emotions could get stuck in a web of cold, dry logic that prevent any humanistic compassion from surfacing at all, in thought or in action.

T-squares are challenging, but also can be productive of growth and change. A T-square in mutable signs offers us the potential to grow in wisdom and consciousness. By extension, we can feel drawn to be of service with our newfound understanding and perception. Sometimes we might push our perspectives on others who aren't asking for nor interested in what we think. However altruistic our motives may be, we could be experienced as being pushy. Another challenge is to avoid the push-pull of being open to the point of naivety or being closed to the point of rigidity. One way to do this is by choosing to work with in a philosophic construct that provides supportive guidance. For example, high-minded spiritual philosophies offer clearly defined morals and ethics in our interaction with others. By following those parameters we can find a balance (Venus) between over accommodation and judgmental expectation. If we find that others are not adhering to a similar behavioral pattern we could choose to limit our interaction with them or avoid them altogether. Similarly, by keeping our vision clear we act as role models to others who have the intention to live in generous, humanitarian ways.

AriesAries (March 21-April 20)
Aries: Start the year with an open mind. You could be drawn to taking classes and beginning a new study. The arts or spirituality are two fields that could be attractive to you. Taking a trip or at least planning a journey to be undertaken at a later date would also be a good use of the energy available to you at this time.

TaurusTaurus (April 21-May 21)
Taurus: You could feel bound up the T-square tension during the first half of the month. Growth for you can come from choosing a subject you are interested in and striving to deepen your understanding of that topic. The challenge is to realize that there is endless potential for learning. Keep your mind open and don't try to tell others your truth unless you are asked.

GeminiGemini (May 22-June 21)
Gemini: Your ruling planet, Mercury, starts the month in Aquarius, retrogrades back into Capricorn and then turns direct. This suggests the possibility of many changes of mind and perspective. Great for learning, but not so good for making decisions that last. Keeping an open mind allows for the possibility of profound insights and innovative inspirations from late January through early February.

CancerCancer (June 22-July 22)
Cancer: The new Moon in Capricorn on the 10th can deepen your insights and understanding of a partner. It also suggests a time of increased intimacy. The full Moon in Leo on the 23rd offers a good opportunity to be clear about your feelings and confident in expressing what they are.

LeoLeo (July 23-August 23)
Leo: The full Moon will be in Leo on the 23rd. Being open about your feelings isn't necessarily a problem for you, but at that time you could be too open. This could leave you feeling quite vulnerable, even as others perceive you as being too demanding of them. Emotional honesty is good. Being selective about how, when and with whom to be open is even better.

VirgoVirgo (August 24-Sept 22)
Virgo: Start the year with contemplation and planning strategy for the year. This might cause some frustration, since the New Year implies new beginnings. The more reflective you are now, however, increases your knowledge base and will enable you to be more productive later in the year.

LibraLibra (Sept 23-Oct 23)
Libra: You may feel an increased sense of responsibility this month, especially in relationship to your family. Growth comes from being realistic about what you can really do and by setting clear limits and boundaries for yourself as well as for others. Failing to do so could cause you to feel overwhelmed, frustrated and restricted by others' expectations or needs.

ScorpioScorpio (Oct 24-Nov 22)
Scorpio: This is a time to focus on you. Starting a new activity that promotes physical health, such as an exercise program, would be extremely beneficial. Getting in touch with your sexual needs and letting appropriate others know what they are is another way of affirming your self-awareness and self-expression.

SagittariusSagittarius (Nov 23-Dec 21)
Sagittarius: Focusing on your needs in relationship can prevent you from being too controlling or feeling too responsible for your partner's fulfillment. There are a lot of moving parts of energy this month. Being flexible can allow things to flow as they will. The more patient you are, the more appropriate, and fulfilling, your choices and actions will be.

CapricornCapricorn (Dec 22-Jan 20)
Capricorn: Integration of mental activity, spiritual growth and communication of both to others is a good way for you to start the year. Balancing alone time with social time is a formula to success. Dictating others' agendas or being critical of others' choices or ideas is not.

AquariusAquarius (Jan 21 to Feb 19)
Aquarius: Early month could bring some tests that challenge your sense of independence of authenticity. This can feel unpleasant, but is a good way to make sure that you are on track. Late month could bring a heightened sense of curiosity, but also the potential to feel confused or overwhelmed with too much information. In either case, growth comes from being selective and discerning.

PiscesPisces (Feb 20-March 20)
Pisces: Inherent feelings of optimistic idealism could meet counter feelings of fear. You may feel that you are being too open or too burdened. Be cautious and try to see all points of a situation to ensure that what you are intending to do is supported by the time, energy and motivation that you realistically have in the situation.

Rio Olesky has been a professional astrologer since 1976. He is the author of A Manual for the Modern Mystic and Astrology and Consciousness. He offers both private readings as well as classes for both beginning and intermediate students. To make an appointment for a reading or to find out more information about classes and lectures, call Rio at 707-887-1820. Check out his website:

View Newsletter Archive