The great wheel turns and the long nights slowly give way to more and more day light. This is an exciting year for many things, but nothing quite as passionate and universal as the Presidential primaries that begin in January. While the election is in November, this first quarter is, arguably, extremely important. The Primaries offer a wide selection with the potential of a president who will make history simply by virtue of race or gender or religion. I can’t remember a race where there was more to choose from. Whether you are off to the left, the right or in the middle, there is a candidate for you and some say there is one for you in both parties. Will you cast your vote and vision for the future of the nation with a familiar face or with someone new? Will you step out of party lines for the best person or will you choose the one the pundits say has the best chance to win? Would you cross party lines for a candidate you want to follow or does the thought of voting for one of “them” send a shudder through your legs? This season we look at what we believe and stare into our fears as we reach for the future. The primaries are the most obvious example. You’ll find others as you move through Your Winter Stars. Get out your chart and see how you’ll feel the push and pull of choice. The desire to be a part of the action, and yes, the service to society, will be strong. Many will register to vote, who have never voted before.
Mars and Pluto face off: Mars is the warrior planet, Pluto the lord of catharsis and transformation. These two faced each other through the fall. I told you that the potential for peace was strong. Look around the world, there are some hot spots, but for all the posturing most of the world is at peace. As Mars and Pluto face each other, and Mercury, the business planet, joins them along with the Sun and moon, we see who are allies and who are adversaries. However, that doesn’t equal war, but it does equal information. Mars and Pluto will spend 3 full months sitting across the table from each other. The action planet and the planet of destruction: The warrior who fights for a nation and the one who kills for his god. Mars is about service; Pluto is about destruction. I know these are harsh words, but these planets linger in lunar mansions that remind us that the world is once again facing the potential for service or sacrifice. Pluto lingers in the center of the galaxy, and sends his powerful bang out to the cosmos. Will He and Mars work together or will they split along ideological lines? Will you face these sides within you? There is really good news: if you had felt the pull to do something different or to make a huge change, and were just waiting for the right time, the first months of 2008 may provide the momentum to leap…even when you don’t know where you’ll land.
Pluto challenges and intensifies Mars’ animosity, but he reveals the cost of aggression quickly. This could be a stand-off, but will likely manifest as powerful peace talks. Neither side walks away with all the booty; but when this combination works, hubris dims in the floodlight of what would come if he tried and failed. This only works when both parties want to carry on so it is not at all good for suicide bombers or petty thugs; it intensifies their drive. For ideologies, religions, societies and political parties, it is great. You see what is worth loving and fighting for, what you must keep and where you can give in order to make the most of what you want to manifest. See plenty of folks split into one of the two parties as they clearly see which side fits. This is true for religion, too. More than anything, it enlivens the passion of the individual even as he identifies his tribe. One vote may not matter to the pragmatist, but the passion that flows through the voter for a candidate or a platform he believes in is palpable. It makes a dark horse candidate a real possibility and discussions are lively!
January: Look yourself in the eyes: Should we trust you? Mars, the planet of action and service, is moving backward in the heavens. We look back on the past and see what we could have done differently. We look ahead to the future and see what we can do to help. We review the old plan and adjust it. Mars and Pluto kick off the year. Around the world, even more than a football team, we feel the pull to pick a side and a candidate. The primaries begin and each of us picks our favorite. That means we must come to terms with our selves, what we believe is possible and what we fear. We wait to see who rises to the helm of the parties. Jupiter is powerful in the heavens throughout the year. He is good for many things, one of which is spin. Hold onto your spin detector and keep your self grounded. With so much at stake, there will be plenty of folks who want to turn you away from one and toward another. Jupiter lingers with Mars and Pluto; the spin master’s tool of choice is hyperbole and fear. Whether it’s the salesperson or the pundit; your challenge is to decide for yourself: critical thinking takes effort and reaction is a reflex. It is up to you to discover what you believe in. It’s OK to change your mind. Mercury goes retrograde from January 28th until February 18th and we get to review as we rethink our beliefs and direction. Better repeat all numbers and expect plenty of old film footage of what candidates said in the past to surface. Pluto is deep and hidden, many will vote their beliefs, but keep those to themselves. If you happen to have a planet between 4 and 10 of Gemini or Sagittarius of your Vedic chart, you are feeling called and ready to act.
February: Pulled Between Work and Rest: Eclipses are coming. There is a solar eclipse on the 6th. It won’t be visible except in the lower part of the southern hemisphere. Still, eclipse time is always dynamic. The Solar eclipse on the 6th is particularly challenging. The Lunar Eclipse on the 20th helps us put a structure in place to work out of the real or apparent mess. Seriously, Eclipse time is a great time to change jobs. Folks leave one that doesn’t fit and that may be the perfect fit for you. The Mars retrograde is over, companies are ready to fill openings and get moving. Mercury is retrograde and we struggle to read the big print, but may forget some of the finer things in life, like patience and empathy for the folks who sincerely forgot the meeting or your birthday. We would rather spend the 1st week of the month in a quiet lodge by a fire, but there is too much going on. There are some dynamic aspects. Combined with eclipses, the Market is volatile. Be sure you get the facts before you buy or sell. In the political realm, the race is volatile too. Caution: don’t believe what you hear and only part of what you read. Sift through the data for verification and facts. Mars is moving forward. The plans set in motion early last fall, then sidetracked later in the fall, are finally ready to go forward. There are plenty of folks, finally, who are making up their minds. Give them until late this month to come forward. Of course, you could call them up just to check on them. Retrograde Mercury on Valentine’s Day assures there will be plenty of mistakes and miscommunications that day. Better deliver the flowers yourself. If giving more than one gift, triple check the cards. The retrograde Mercury period is known for simple errors and delays. Be patient with the delivery person and give your sweetheart the benefit of the doubt. He truly did forget. Be clear and direct when you speak from your heart.
March: Things are Moving! We begin the month with Mars facing Pluto for the final time. Rumors of change in Iraq make the news, but we can only have faith they cannot be confirmed. Take a moment to face your desire for change and your fear of moving toward it. This combination offers an element of surprise; mostly, it brings the end to a long project begun 6 months earlier. This month could signal the end to the primaries. It surely brings clarity to the opposing sides. Financially, we should see the dollar turn around. I expect it by the end of this month, surely by late April. I do not see real recession. There may even be talk of the benefit of home ownership even though it costs the value of the dollar. We start to pull out of the financial crises late this month and gain strength in the world. It is very possible that some of the peace talks made a difference. It is also likely that some other foes now openly declare plans for future conflict. It seems that some conflicts end as others some to light. The US economy chugs along in the face of global interdependence.
The Race: Clinton and Romney were front runners. They both just finished a year of favorable transits. At the end of November, that changed. To hold onto their positions, both will have to rely upon strategy and vision to stay ahead. It doesn’t look easy for either.
Three Republicans: Huckabee has great drive and a powerful desire to win. As I write this, he is gaining momentum in Iowa. I don’t have a birth time, so with birth date alone, I’ll go out on a limb and say this: He’ll gain popularity through the winter, which may get him onto a ticket. Still, he has some really tough transits in the spring. It doesn’t look good for him long term. But he gives them a run and may take the VP spot in the future if his clout is needed. Giuliani has a number of favorable transits that combine a mix of destiny and luck. He has charm, ambition and a past that will haunt him. He might make it through the winter, but if the time of birth I have of 2:30pm is correct, I doubt he’ll make it through spring. Romney has the most balanced personality of the three. His big obstacle is his religion. He is better at making friends than sparring for sound bites. His natural drive is strong, but only a strange mix of events will win him the nomination. He will come out with surprises through this season. We haven’t seen Romney hit his stride yet. If he does get the nomination, he’ll be the best contender against the Dems. He even has very favorable aspects in January 2009. It’s a long year ahead. What does this all mean? None of these three has an easy or clear path to the nomination. It should be exciting; perhaps there will still be another contender.
The Democrats: Right now it looks like Clinton, Edwards and Obama. Edwards may be 3rd, but he has favorable and feisty transits throughout this season. He’s not fading from view any time soon. Obama’s time of birth is not known to me as I write this. Just looking at his date of birth, he continues to have the passionate transits of Mars, Pluto and Jupiter on his Venus. Thus far, he has taken the high road and avoided sniper-like comments from Clinton. If he gets the nomination it will be through passion, his love of the country and his belief that anything is possible. That message will carry him far and his faith that people want a vision more than caustic remarks will set him apart. (Of course, his friends are helping.) Clinton has the most intense and combative chart of the three. She is considered the front runner and will feed the hungry crowd what it wants in terms of sound bites and jabs at her competition. Her time of birth is also unknown. She has given at least 2 different times to different people. Again, I’m just using the date. She has very few lucky transits this year. Not at all like last year. It will take great effort to stay ahead. But, she has been known to exert great effort for a goal. The front runner is pulling out of her best or at least easiest time. Hmm…could it be Obama and Edwards on the same ticket or will it be someone else?
Where the Love Grows: January is more reflective and cautious. We look for wise partners above wild ones. February is strongest for passionate commitment and confusion. Particularly after the 10th. Be clear about how you feel and what you mean. March finds us looking at the practical side of love: friend and partnership. Are you good at friendship? Are you partner material?
How the Money Flows: The end of this quarter marks the end of a 6 month, volatile period. The Market and the dollar steady. It may be a recession, but not a deep one and the dollar works its way back. In the meantime, expect plenty of foreign travelers who take advantage of the exchange rate. Expect to bump into them at every tourist stop. Welcome them.