Image by Alexandra Vozvyshaeva on Unsplash
The Lunar Eclipse takes place on January 10th at 19.21 GMT at 20 degrees Cancer.
The Moon in Cancer is opposite the Sun conjunct Mercury Cazimi, Saturn, Pluto and Ceres all in Capricorn. Saturn and Pluto are exactly conjunct on January 12th at 22 degrees Capricorn, Jupiter is also in Capricorn conjunct the South Node and Uranus stations direct in Taurus on January 11th – Wow – but this alignment in the sky has not suddenly appeared, it has been slowly building over time, even a quick glance at the World news illustrates this.
Whilst there is cause, especially at this potent, emotionally challenging eclipse to feel unsettled, even fearful, keep in mind humanity has been on the brink of, and faced many crises before … and we are still here, life goes on. The influence of Saturn and Pluto is now at a peak, and looking ahead the lunar nodes leave Cancer/Capricorn to enter Gemini/Sagittarius in May 2020, as well as at the end of 2020 on December 21st – Winter Solstice – Jupiter and Saturn start a new cycle with their conjunction in Aquarius, an air sign. This will certainly change things, a shift that will see solutions being sought that emphasise equality, respect for each other and the earth. The future holds seeds of change, hope and even optimism.
This is a Penumbral Lunar Eclipse. Traditionally the visibility of an eclipse is believed to enhance its effect, and the eclipse is visible here in the UK along with from Europe, Asia, Australia, and Africa.
The 1801 chart for the UK (based on the Act of Union between Britain and Ireland which came into effect on January 1st 1801, 00.00 am, London) has the Moon in Cancer at 19 degrees 25′ – the eclipse takes place on the UK Moon. The Cancer-Capricorn axis brings up themes of the new versus the old, the future versus the past – and Brexit will certainly be a new direction for the UK. The Moon signifies the UK population as a whole, in addition the Moon is in the 10th house in the UK chart, which signifies rulers, the government and the monarchy – Prince Andrew has recently been excluded from royal duties due to his connection to the Epstein scandal, and overall it would be unsurprising to see the UK, its political leaders and the monarchy under further pressure in months to follow.
The Meaning of a Lunar Eclipse
A Lunar Eclipse happens on what would ordinarily be a Full Moon. However, the presence of the Moon’s nodes means that the Sun, Moon and Earth are all aligned, the Earth is between the Sun and Moon and therefore blocks the light of the Sun from reaching the Moon.
Normally a full Moon shows whatever seeds we planted at the new Moon maturing and becoming ripe, being illuminated so that we can clearly see and understand our course of action and its results. At a lunar eclipse the illumination is interrupted and blocked. This can be disorientating, things are obscured and we can’t fully discern what is ahead. Our inner world, our emotions and fears that are normally suppressed can rise to the surface. It’s a good time to pause, reflect on and assess our life over the last 6 months since the previous eclipse season, it’s also possible for emotions to erupt and overflow, sometimes this release is necessary to aid purging, cleansing and healing from something buried and painful.
Lunar Saros Series
This eclipse is from Lunar Saros Series 144, the last eclipse from this series was on December 30th 2001 at 8 degrees 41′ Cancer. The Metonic cycle brings eclipses to the same degree every 19 years, the last eclipse on this degree, 20 degrees Cancer, was on January 9th 2001. On a personal level, themes associated or sharing an affinity with what was happening in our lives during 2001 could be relevant.
This Lunar Eclipse follows the Solar Eclipse that took place on December 26th 2019, and during eclipse season (Dec 26th – Jan 10th, I also allow a few days either side of these dates) it is sensible to approach life with a hint of caution, as eclipses unleash powerful energy that is characteristically unpredictable. It’s best to avoid any manifestation rituals, charging of crystals etc, I still light my candles, burn my incense etc, but with a focus on purification and protection – eclipse energy is purging and should be respected. Additionally, whilst Mercury is cazimi during the eclipse, I won’t be intentionally utilising that energy.
The Moon rules Cancer, Saturn rules Capricorn and currently he is not only in residence, Saturn also has the Sun, Mercury, Jupiter, Pluto and Ceres (21 degrees 50′ Capricorn) as guests – a stellium. The Moon is opposite the Sun, Mercury, Saturn, Pluto and Ceres, Jupiter is conjunct the South Node (exact on January 6th).
That’s a heavy load of earth energy – adding to it, Uranus is also in earth sign Taurus.
The Moon and Cancer are focused on emotion, love, nuturing, home and family – especially the more vulnerable members, children and the elderly who need protecting and looking after. In a mundane chart, the Moon represents women, children, but also the general public.
Capricorn is authority, structure – parents or parental figures, government, the state. Saturn provides rules, boundaries – joining him in Capricorn is the Sun (King), Mercury (Mind), Pluto (Power), Ceres (Ultimatums) and Jupiter (Opinions/Judgements). It looks like a very emotional showdown, between the past and the future, humanity and materialism, popular opinion and power structures, greed and consumerism (Capricorn) and the damage it has done to the earth, our home (Moon/Cancer) her resources (Ceres) and collectively the global population (Moon) – seemingly weighted in the favour of those with power and influence.
But … Jupiter is conjunct the South Node, could this be Jupiter bringing a release, a freedom from the past in some way? Including, bringing to account or delivering judgement on those guilty of past misdeeds?
Potent, underlying, festering issues from the past are surfacing – corruption, lies, inequality and injustice – that can’t be skipped over or avoided. A bumpy road lies ahead, but it leads to a turning point, something eases up, that ultimately may bring a sense of healing.
On a personal level, as ever, the influence of the eclipse depends on how your natal chart is linked up with the eclipse – could be a whisper, barely heard or an unmissable announcement.
If the eclipse is buzzing your chart, so are Saturn and Pluto, and potentially life has been posing challenges and difficulties, maybe leaving you feeling bruised, dispirited or worse – hang in! Things are shifting and repositioning – even if this takes time to become clearly visible.
The eclipse may illuminate family issues – power dynamics or secrets, public status – work and career, where you call home – moving or re-locating, there could also be links involving legal issues or publishing/broadcasting – matters becoming public knowledge.
At the time of the Eclipse, Mercury is Cazimi – “In the Heart of the Sun” – Mind (Mercury) is illuminated by life (Sun) and self-expression (Sun) is inspired by wisdom (Mercury). This suggests a moment of realisation or information coming to light, we may see something clearly, the absolute reality of a situation, which is best handled calmly and responsibly – but this could be hard with Luna feeling so sensitive and emotional.
Uranus turning direct on January 11th, releases energy and action directed towards change. On an individual level during the retrograde period, potentially changes have been brewing internally, thoughts and ideas about life and how you approach it have adjusted, these changes are now ripe and ready to erupt, be put in motion.
Fixed Star ~ Castor
Fixed Star Castor is in the constellation of the twins – Gemini. The constellation represents Castor and Pollux, the twin sons of Leda and Jupiter.
“Castor is the mortal Twin famous for his skill in taming and managing horses, and the Northern Twin (western). The immortal twin is Pollux, the Boxer….In India they Acvini, the Ashwins or ‘Horsemen’, they were also called Apollo (Castor) and Hercules (Pollux).” Star Names, Richard Hinkley Allen, page 230
“It gives distinction, a keen intellect, success in law and many travels, fondness for horses, sudden fame and honor but often followed by loss of fortune and disgrace, sickness, trouble and great affliction. It’s natives are said to be mischievous and prone to violence.” Fixed Stars and Constellations in Astrology, Vivian E. Robson, page 154
“Castor has specific associations with breaking an arm or leg and this may come from the Ptolemaic classification of Castor as a Mercury star, which is much associated with the limbs generally. Castor is also noted in natal astrology for proneness to mental breakdowns and neurotic distress. People with this star prominent and well aspected are exceptionally gifted intellectually. Where these geniuses often need help is not letting their concern for others go ‘over the top’.” The Living Stars, Dr Eric Morse, page 43
“Castor is influenced by Mercury and has a blend of Jupiter in it. Linked with the Moon or Mercury, it has the effect of such people being blessed with a good nature and fine morals. It is also supposed to convey refined manners.” Fixed Stars and their Interpretation, Elsbeth Ebertin, page 40
With Moon ~ “Timid, sensitive, lacks confidence, occult interest and psychic ability, blindness, injuries to the face, disgrace, stabs, wounds (operations nowadays), imprisonment.” Robson, page 155
Castor calls attention to the mind, either at it’s best – intellectual, logical and reasoned, or most vulnerable – nervous, anxious, stressed. Castor is considered beneficial, but if afflicted can bring trouble, Castor conveys sensitivity, a need to care for and protect others – to attain success and be in a positive, place of strength to assist others, the mind must be calm, balanced and discerning.
TAROT ~ 4 OF CUPS
The Lunar Eclipse takes place in the third decan of Cancer ruled by the Moon (Jupiter by triplicity). The corresponding tarot card is the 4 of Cups. The Moon is the High Priestess card in the tarot, intuition, contemplation and illumination, Cancer is the Chariot, purpose and self-protection – the 4 of Cups combines the Moon’s emotional changeability and instinctive awareness of what is not yet manifest and Cancer’s drive to attain it. Book T calls this card “Blended Pleasure”.
The Rider Waite Smith card depicts a young man sitting beneath a tree with three cups, a floating hand offers a fourth. The young man rather than appreciating what he already has, is feeling emotional, caught up with thoughts of what is missing, what needs to be attained to feel truly fulfilled and secure. This may not be as it first appears, rather than chasing the attainment of further monetary gain or possessions, the 4 of Cups can reveal sadness, depression that despite an abundance of material glitter – true happiness and satisfaction with his life eludes him.
The man’s inner reflection, can potentially provide insight – the gift of the fourth cup floating in the clouds -improve his perception of his situation, renew his inner strength and lead him to a changed view and mood.
In a tarot reading, the 4 of cups can reveal disappointment, a yearning for something more or different – perhaps, even despite having material success and resources, emotionally, on a deeper level, something is missing, money can’t buy everything. It’s a time of introspection, an evaluation of what has (or has not) been accomplished so far, then zooming in and focusing on exactly what goal or aim would bring contentment. Following this, feeling revitalised, it’s time to emerge and creatively engage with life once again, embrace new experiences.
“If we want to act from our hearts and not just meet the expectations of others, we may need to withdraw for a while and tap into our inner wisdom. However, knowledge doesn’t come from introspection alone. Perhaps you’re familiar with the Zen idea that the path to enlightenment is found in the everyday activities of chopping wood and carrying water. Well, action also leads to personal and spiritual developement. Thinking and doing – this card challenges us to balance the two.”
Spiritual Tarot by Echols, Mueller and Thomson, page 181
Overall – This Lunar Eclipse is bringing something to a climax, awareness of something impossible to ignore – which sparks us to act, take steps to sort out, resolve and change something.