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The Wheel of Light

Monthly Newsletter - January 2018

January 1 is supposed to be the beginning of the New Year. However, two events that took place in late December could be considered the true start of a new cycle. One of those events occurs every year: the Winter Solstice that took place on December 21. At that time the Sun entered Capricorn. One could think of this annual event as the birth of the Sun. From that point and for the next 6 months, the Sun will be moving north, promising the renewal of life in the northern hemisphere. The other event occurred on December 19. Two days prior to the Solstice, the ruling planet of Capricorn, Saturn, entered the sign of its dignity and will remain there until March 2020. The transit occurs approximately every 28 years. In the past 200 years, Saturn has entered Capricorn only 3 previous times in December, and never as close to the Solstice as 2017. Conjunctions always indicate times of new beginnings. We can assume that the Sun-Saturn conjunction at the time of a powerful point like the Solstice can bring some important and intense changes. I will discuss this event in greater depth and detail in my annual Perspectives talk. This year it will be on January 9 from 7-9 PM at the Luther Burbank Center for the Arts. Admission is $15 at MP3 recordings of the talk will be available. I will also be offering a class in intermediate astrology that will begin on January 24 at SRJC. For information about the class call Rio at 707-887-1820.To enroll in the class, call the Community Education Office at 707-527-4582.

One way we define planets is that they represent energies. The sign a planet resides in is an archetype that filters the energy. When a planet is in the sign it is said to "rule" its expression is pure. Nothing gets filtered out. Its influence, therefore, is more powerful. The nature of Saturn and Capricorn is to focus. They define goals, the structure within which to achieve the goal and the estimated time of arrival. Saturn is the energy of personal responsibility. Ultimately this implies the necessity of becoming aware of all our thoughts, feelings and actions. We can't control the world, but we can control ourselves and the direction we want our lives to move toward. To whatever degree we don't take primary responsibility, we are allowing other people or external circumstances to control us. The I Ching reminds us that "all life on earth is conditioned and unfree". Saturn is the energy of limitation. We can choose the ways in which we are willing to accept limitation and thereby also choose the ways we will be free. Or, we can give that power away and let various forces in our world choose those limits for us.

In the collective context, Saturn represents authority and Capricorn represents organized structure such as the state or a corporation. We can assume that this transit will enhance the power of authority figures in both government and business as well as the institutions themselves. From my point of view, this is not good news. We are already living in a country in which the president represents the interests of the corporation. He has already plotted this country's course on a very restricted platform in which only the interests of this country matter, and only a limited minority of citizen's interests matter. The big picture of climate change and interaction with the rest of the world in mutually beneficial ways are not on his radar. How can we alter this picture and the depressing goals that are already in place?

Capricorn is a sign of action. Two courses emerge for us over the next 2 years. One is on the personal level. With Saturn in Capricorn our potential for self-discipline is strong. We can initiate patterns in our own lives that enable us to be empowered. When one is empowered, he or she realizes that they are the prime source of authority in their own reality. They are the prime source of permission, approval and recognition. They establish their lives within a clear context of limits and boundaries. When we don't accept and work with self-discipline we are giving our power away and letting others set those limits and boundaries for us. This could pertain to helping the environment by doing something as simple as remembering to eat quality, locally grown food and recycling our waste. We can choose what products to buy based on the policies of the company that made them. Capricorn is goal oriented. We can also activate self-discipline by defining and working to achieve what we define as important. Usually people associate Saturn and Capricorn with material goals, which is something they do pertain to. These influences, however, can also pertain to personal growth. We can apply discipline to a spiritual path and work with the single pointed focus of Saturn to enhance our spiritual growth and consciousness development. A great deal of progress can be made in this arena over the next couple of years.

We also need to work with these archetypes collectively. One way to do that is by engaging in the political arena. Capricorn pertains to organized groups all working toward the same end. Our country has slanted so far to the right, especially in the past year, that it's time for a redirection. People need to get involved in the electoral process. Running for office, working for a candidate or an issue and most important of all, taking the time to exercise our birthright and vote. In the North Bay area we have seen the power of collective action since the horrendous firestorm nightmare of early October. Whether it was the actions of the first responders or donations of food, clothing and money that has been given to the fire victims, we have experienced first hand how people working together can solve what seem to be overwhelming difficulties.

With Saturn entering Capricorn at the Solstice there is great potential for bringing light into our world. Whether that's the light of compassion and human interaction or the light of consciousness illuminating our personal paths in life, the potential for grounded, significant, empowered change is at hand. As newscaster Scoop Nisker used to say on KSAN in 1960's, "If you don't like the news, go out and make some of your own".

AriesAries (March 21-April 20)
Aries: The Saturn transit can mark a new professional beginning for you. This could mean setting a long-term goal and beginning the process of achieving it. It could also mean deciding to go in a new direction, focusing on a new career altogether. Growth for you comes from developing the self-discipline that will help prevent you from getting bored quickly and turning to another projected goal or framework.

TaurusTaurus (April 21-May 21)
Taurus: The goal that may entice you during this Saturn transit could pertain to something that expands consciousness. This could involve going to school with the intention of getting a degree. It could also pertain to a desire to travel and expand consciousness by expanding horizons. Focusing on spiritual matters, whether philosophical, metaphysical or theological would also be a good direction to pursue.

GeminiGemini (May 22-June 21)
Gemini: The Saturn transit could be challenging for you. You tend to like variety and multiplicity of interests. Saturn and Capricorn are more single pointed. You prioritize sharing of information even while you expand your own intellect. Capricorn is an earth sign that likes things oriented toward practical results. Growth for you can come from learning how to slow down your mind and deepen your focus.

CancerCancer (June 22-July 22)
Cancer: Two full Moons this month bring emotional awareness into high focus. The full Moon in Cancer on the 2nd may act as a trigger to bring both stimulation of emotion as well as the impulsive expression of them. The full Moon in Leo on the 31st could bring a desire to dialogue with others about your respective responses to activities you have in common.

LeoLeo (July 23-August 23)
Leo: The Saturn transit could influence you in two areas - work and health. In the former, this is a good time to focus on developing skills that enable you to function more efficiently and effectively in your field. In the latter, this is a transit that will help you create a daily routine that enables you to cover all the bases of health maintenance. It could also help you focus on a plan of health regeneration and stick to the plan.

VirgoVirgo (August 24-Sept 22)
Virgo: Like Capricorn, you are a hard worker. Ironically, the Saturn transit could impel you to have more fun and to be more playful and adventurous. Saturn is a serious energy. You may take your recreational time more seriously than others do. But in the long run, the discipline and time you apply to whatever you enjoy doing for pleasure will help you become more proficient at it, thereby enabling you to enjoy it more.

LibraLibra (Sept 23-Oct 23)
Libra: The Saturn transit could bring your intention into the most personal realms of your life: home and family. The focus could be on stabilization, how to sink roots or to maintain the ones already established. This could imply working on the physical residence itself or to work the relational dynamics of the family. Growth comes from balancing the need for harmony with the need for control.

ScorpioScorpio (Oct 24-Nov 22)
Scorpio: The challenge for you during the Saturn transit could be to overcome a sense of social awkwardness so that you can interact with a variety of people. The conversations may not be deep or meaningful, but they will allow you to share what you know with others in ways that could benefit them. Similarly, being open to new ideas or perspectives could allow you to learn things that could prove to be surprisingly useful

SagittariusSagittarius (Nov 23-Dec 21)
Sagittarius: Saturn and Capricorn represent the earth element, so this transit calls on you to be more practical. Start with clarifying what you value in terms of the material aspects of life. Get in touch with you inherent tools and talents that will enable you to create and maintain a materially meaningful life. Growth can come from defining long-range financial goals.

CapricornCapricorn (Dec 22-Jan 20)
Capricorn: The challenge for you with this transit is not to express the energy in extreme ways. One of these is being overly responsible. This could cause you to spend too much time and too many resources making sure that you and everyone you know is OK. This could cause you to feel limited. Alternatively, you could use this transit to try to control other people or external situations. Growth comes from remembering that Saturn transits indicate where work needs to be done. At this time the work is on you.

AquariusAquarius (Jan 21 to Feb 19)
Aquarius: There is a subtle but strong component of Saturn and Capricorn that can by oriented toward mysticism. This may be a way that you utilize this transit. This could impel you to begin a spiritual path that includes meditation and/or ritual. It could enable you to deepen your intuitive awareness, becoming capable of helping others in more subtle, yet profound ways.

PiscesPisces (Feb 20-March 20)
Pisces: The Saturn transit may bring your focus to the social realms of your life. Growth can come from joining with others in some type of collective project. This could be in a political realm or one that pertains to colleagues. This is also a good time to deepen, rather than broaden your social activities with friends. You may even limit contact with people with whom you have little interest or little in common.

Rio Olesky has been a professional astrologer since 1976. He is the author of A Manual for the Modern Mystic and Astrology and Consciousness and The Astroreader. He offers both private readings as well as classes for both beginning and intermediate students. Call Rio at 707-887-1820. Check out his website:

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