Planet Waves for January 2005


This is the 'magazine version' of the 2005 Annual horoscope. For information about the full edition -- with 1,200 words per sign and many articles about the astrology of 2005-2012, see this link for Bridge to the Core.

Aries (March 20-April 19)

The real work, and thus the real gain, of these four seasons involves sorting out what is important to you and what is not. The astrological key is Mars retrograde in Taurus, which happens in the fall, but which will be offering its messages throughout the year, particularly as the Sun crosses Taurus this spring. What's important to you is likely to exist in a state of constant flux, particularly as your level of interaction with your community -- 'community' being a word that appears a lot in this annual horoscope -- goes to several new levels. There comes a time, not so far in the future, when you see that you are being asked to offer something to the world; then, you're likely to spend a lot of time investigating whether you have that particular quality to offer. You may wonder whether anyone needs you, or worse, whether they want what you have to give. Try not to spend too much time convincing yourself. Between certainty and doubt is a space of acknowledging what is so. In any given moment, with a moment's thought, this is never particularly difficult to see. In such times you may notice that who you are and where you are add up to why you are there. And at any moment, you have the prerogative to look around you and ask: what am I called upon to do right now? The answer will be obvious.

Taurus (April 19-May 20)

You're someone to whom it all makes sense in the end. But now you are at a beginning, and it would be very nice if things made more sense at this phase of the game. If we're talking about 2005, there is a reassessment that comes at the end of the year, in the form of Mars retrograde in your sign. Then, a few weeks later, a Venus retrograde spans from Aquarius back to Capricorn. Once again you're being pushed beyond your need for love and comfort, to draw your safety from within, and to take nothing for granted. There's a school of thought that says it's better to meet the day when the day arrives; but astrology's gift of foresight would be wasted, could we not use it to plan a growth agenda. The question is, how well are you able to bring people into your life who can fully identify with your need to be so independent, but still be in a relationship? The theme in past seasons has been about you seeing other people's lives for what they are; to be sure, it's more difficult to convince yourself that your experience matters to anyone else. You need to be honest with people now, so that once you notice what your real needs are, nobody has any power over you that might prevent you from meeting them. If you never give another person power over your safety or security, you will see what it means to relate to others on equal terms.

Gemini (May 20-June 21)

Gemini's child has had many opportunities to see herself as the passive recipient of experience, the current phase of your life is a study in cause and effect: with you in the starring role, as the cause. Those afraid of getting blamed for other people's problems may cower from this. I suggest you celebrate, because the implication is that, by choosing between obvious alternatives, you can actually get a vote in your destiny. You do not need permission, or an invitation, to co-create your life. You merely need to engage in a dialog. This goes for personal interactions, as well as professional. I can barely begin to describe the kinds of opportunities that are open to you now. If you don't see them, I assure you, you are looking too low on the food chain, or are still thinking about your life in terms a high school guidance counselor would understand. If you're going to meet your highest aspirations, you need a very high degree of freedom. I suggest you put this tops on your agenda when considering the right profession, a question that is so central to your life. Freedom means freedom with time, with expression, with defining your mission, and the freedom of whom you associate with. In short, you must live at the center of a life that allows you to change, sooner rather than later; with ease, rather than with complication.

Cancer (June 21-July 22)

You have experienced the danger, the beauty and ultimately the power of partnership. And no matter how important another person may be to you, you've learned to remember who you are despite this fact. Remember that it's never easy for a water sign person to truly feel good about him or herself because you feel so much, so deeply, and on this plane of reality, there are so many reasons for doubt. But even you would agree that one of your greatest personal assets is determination, and you seem only the stronger for having faced your fears and weaknesses so directly. Chiron transiting Aquarius will show you just how close to the edge you've been for so long, and provide a better map of the territory. It's true that so much seems to hang by a thread, and that the lines between success and failure, happiness and sadness, or life and death, can seem awfully fine. The thing is, they actually do exist. There really is not a gray area possible in these matters -- and where there appears to be one, it's best to stand back, because perhaps the most critical theme of 2005 is that ambiguity is not an option. Based on all your new information about yourself, and the confidence you have gained from having your determination tested over and over, you'll be faced with a series of decisions on which so much seems to hinge. It does, and that's okay; it's so rare in this lifetime that we get into territory where everything really does matter.

Leo (July 22-Aug. 23)

It's true that you know your limits. And in the coming seasons, you're going to learn a lot about going past them. Ask any athlete: what are our limits for, except to exceed? In a similar way, most people don't know how challenging it is for you to fit into this world. You are very good at warming the people around you up, thawing some of the social ice, and spreading your good vibes. But to actually be part of a community that you can relate to is, inwardly, a challenge of which you rarely speak. During the coming 12 months, both Saturn and Chiron will be taking up starring roles in your life. Saturn's return to Leo for the first time in nearly three decades represents you coming to terms with your talents, your value and your need for freedom. While Chiron's presence in your 7th house raises the stakes on your relationships -- they all become more prominent in your life, and far more compelling -- this transit bestows the gift of your becoming a master communicator who can bridge any barrier of language, intelligence or ideology. As for Saturn: it was Jesus who said that unless we become like little kids, we can't attain enlightenment. I would add a corollary. It is only when we become mature adults that we can see and feel the world from the heart-space of a child. This, in the end, will be Saturn's gift to you.

Virgo (Aug. 23-Sep. 22)

Virgo is the original sensitive instrument of the zodiac, the one that can process an ocean of data on next to no electrical current; the one that moves a mountain range with an idea; the one whose logic defies science, then creates new science (very quietly). But creativity? That is, perhaps, a sensitive spot for you. I'm here to prepare you for a series of not-so-gradual adjustments designed by the cosmic engineers to get your creative fires ripping. For complex reasons, Leo and Aquarius are the two most alien energies to you, and this is where the energy moves. You are not quite self-centered enough to understand how Leo processes reality; you are not quite enough of a group thinker to grok the world from the viewpoint of Aquarius. To the contrary: you have a tendency to isolate even from yourself (not very Leo) and to need to stand alone most of the time (not very Aquarius). Gradually, I see you getting pushed so far into your own world that you pop out the other side: where the rest of us live. And I see you yearning for intellectual challenges that are so complex and urgent that there's no way you could take them up alone. Meanwhile, in that aspect of your life once known as romantic, the only situations worth pursuing are the ones that lovingly shock you to your senses so thoroughly that you know you're never going back anyplace else. Why bother?

Libra (Sep. 22-Oct. 23)

Free yourself from the habit of thinking your luck has run out once something really good has happened. No, I'm not looking at someone else's charts. I know that many astrologers promised all kinds of sweetness and starlight regarding last year's Venus transit of the Sun, which turned out, actually, to be quite turbulent. But the transit, if nothing else, pointed to truly long-term developments. Speaking of which, how has your reputation-building work been coming? Have you distributed a box of 500 business cards, one at a time? I suggest you set this as a goal for before the first day of spring. Get the cards printed, and get used to saying, "Hello, my name is______, and I do_______." Don't expect the astrology to do the work; do the work of the astrology. This is always true where the 10th house is concerned, particularly when Saturn is in the picture. You will need the contacts you make in this process, and they need you. You've been setting about accomplishing something that is, in the end, highly specialized, so the right partners and associates are not a matter of compromise. To the extent that you've felt absolutely out of your element, I think that the series of changes beginning in late winter will gradually bring you back in to a world you know. Just remember that alchemy is a two-way street. You have your very meaningful effect on the world, and it has its on you.

Scorpio (Oct. 23-Nov. 22)

Could it be that you're going to take all your hard-won gains of the past God-knows how many seasons and gamble them on something that goes against all your ideas about security, emotional comfort and keeping the world reasonably predictable? Or could it be that beneath the steel plate of those values, down in your soul where it really matters, you honor freedom above all else? Just remember that you have nothing to prove. You don't need to make decisions just to establish that you're free, though you may be inclined to do just that. Resist the temptation. The most serious challenges and most pressing decisions come at the end of the year, and you will want to keep your options open for then. Count on the people you are now close to getting much closer. Not everyone in this life gets to experience the pleasure of hand-in-glove relationships; fewer still appreciate them for what they are. Think of the bonding that forms between trapeze artists, actors or technicians working on a complex project for years. Personal differences set themselves aside; it's understood that the project will rise or fall on cooperation. You will learn to trust people this year, but the really beautiful thing is that you'll learn to trust yourself like you never have before. There is no telling at the beginning of this adventure the form that things will take at the end; this is for you to decide in those moments when life truly matters the most.

Sagittarius (Nov. 22-Dec. 22)

You've made an art form out of not knowing for sure. In a universe of so many possibilities, there's little use nailing down reality to one or two generalities that are going to change in 15 minutes. However, that psychic climate pattern is itself about to change. Remember that the symbol of Sagittarius is an arrow: a sharp, straight object that flies through the air toward a specific goal or objective. There's nothing vague about that. It may seem odd when, after dealing with so much fluff and fuzz, you're standing on the solid ground of right and wrong, seeing the world in the high-contrast light of differences that really matter. Part of why they matter so much is due to your standing in the community. You have a visible role to play, and you impact many people beyond your immediate frame of reference. So you simply cannot afford uncertainty or to take morally shaky positions. You also cannot afford to make up the rules as you go. And you know that dogma turns off anyone with a shred of intelligence. So there must be something else that guides you. Let it be the wisdom of experience; let it be data. Take a scientific approach and base your assessments on what you can see, smell, measure and otherwise sense. These are always subject to interpretation, and you're good at that. But for now, cosmic critter that you are, you must ground your sense of reality in the physical world of here and now -- where it is.

Capricorn (Dec. 22-Jan. 20)

There's been little relief from the tests and growth opportunities of the past two or three years. Could you have endured more? We had better not ask. But could you have had more opportunity to stretch your entire being into a whole new inner cosmos? I doubt it. You've been under the simultaneous influence of Chiron in your sign and Saturn in your opposite sign, which has meant clearing out and scrubbing down to the bare walls every aspect of your identity and your life. Every relationship has either transformed or ended; long ago, you came to the recognition that the one compromise you could not make would be to play charades with your integrity. It's never especially easy, having decided that you deserve a better situation, to put that idea out to people for the first time. Going from amateur to professional is one way to describe the changes you're about to encounter. Most people fear they will lose their souls in the process. We both know you face no such possibility. Even as you've noticed that the work of living was becoming a little less intense, the reality of your success began to dawn on you in the form of more fulfilling work and more stable relationships. In truth, you cannot always be the strong one, or the one who sets the standard for dedication and stability. It's too much work, and robs you of being in the position to receive -- something you very much deserve, and something you'll learn to do.

Aquarius (Jan. 20-Feb. 19)

The Lord of Waters is visiting the sign of the Water Bearer. In the coming weeks, Neptune reaches the exact midpoint of his 5,118-day journey across the terrain of your soul, which began in early 1998. To put it mildly, this has been an odyssey; for much of the world, it has felt like drifting out into nowhere and discovering that's exactly where we are. For Aquarius, it has been about filling that big jug you're always depicted holding. There have, as well, been nearly unbearable tests of your patience and endurance; everything you thought you knew about yourself has somehow been taken away. You've had to learn how to breathe under water when really you would much prefer air. But there can be no denying that your awareness of the spiritual world has been enhanced enormously. Though it defies all logic, the unseen world is now your first home. Yet you can never have confidence in what you know if you haven't subjected it to practical tests, put it to work in your relationships, and most important, applied it to your community. You've learned far more than you think, but you've also reached the time when you can no longer keep knowledge for its own sake. The test of your true genius will be applying what you have gained to every situation in your life, finding evermore intelligent ways of making contact and solving the problem of alienation -- a problem you know about all too well.

Pisces (Feb. 19-March 20)

Pisces is willing to be what the world needs him or her to be. While I recommend maintaining certain limits here, I also call upon you to take this time as an opportunity -- the most awesome one ever to reinvent yourself. Yet the question is, into what, and why. No Pisces can be happy merely being self-serving, because you are too intimately connected with the whole cosmos. Fortunately, it's generally true that what helps you helps everyone. You have options, but they are subtle. With Neptune lurking silently in your solar 12th house for the past six years, you've had to deal with more than your share of uncertainty. It's as if your dreams have been in a fog, and your identity held in an idea. But now you've reached a turning point, and as Chiron joins Neptune in Aquarius, everything you were missing suddenly comes into focus. For now, the most effective course of action is to orient on the most practical matters of your work, your health and your mode of service. Practice your particular craft as if it truly mattered. Given the fact that you seem to have unlimited energy and the mysterious ability to conjure resources at will, look for the connections to your highest and deepest calling; look for where the world truly needs you; and believe it's true. Then watch what develops. In times of no hope, it's vital to nurture faith. In each new situation, faith is an act of divinely inspired invention, shared as the gift that increases in being given away.

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