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Many of us find ourselves bouncing back and forth, sometimes pretty dramatically, between optimism and hopelessness. The symbolic wisdom of astrology helps us understand and navigate these powerful times of transition and transformation. What is happening? What does it all mean? What are we becoming?

Astrology and the cosmos can provide some insight into how we are changing and why. From my perspective as an evolutionary astrologer, I see the difficult and sometimes painful circumstances that we must confront as an important step in our learning and growth, both on personal and collective levels. The challenges we face are necessary to push us into taking greater responsibility for our circumstances.

We need to expand both our hearts and our minds to be able to handle the awareness of truths that are beginning to dawn on us. These truths include, but are not limited to, new discoveries being made by science about the nature of the universe, how our bodies work, and what is taking place at unseen dimensions. They include the necessity that we transcend war. And they include confronting the limitations of existence on a planet whose resources are being depleted as we speak.

The importance of us ?getting? these lessons is no less than the fate of humanity and the planet. But there are powerful signs of real change. So many of us are awakening to the areas where we can no longer compromise personal empowerment, because personal empowerment is the source of hope. When you understand who you are, why you are here, and how you are here to make a difference, you can stand in your unique perspective and speak, act, and choose from the truth which comes from your essence ? that which brings meaning and fulfillment to your life.

Here, in a nutshell, are the astrological ?indicators? of change.

Transition to the Age of Aquarius
This is a long-term transitional period, not one that takes place in a single moment, or in a single year. It refers to the approximately 2000-year time period that constitutes an ?age.? The age of Pisces began around the time of the beginning of Christianity. Ages refer to a gradual ?slipping? of the zodiac which takes place when observed over long periods of time, or the position of the Sun in the zodiac through our seasons as compared with its position against the backdrop of remote stars.

Symbolically, the age of Pisces referred to giving up our power as individuals while depending upon a representation of the divine ? generally an authority figure ? to tell us what to do. In many cases this power was claimed in bloody and terrifying ways. We submitted to it because the alternative was to be outcast from the safety and protection of the collective culture and society. Conformity, and giving up individual needs and styles, was what ensured the survival and continuation of the community.

The age of Aquarius refers to us reclaiming our power as individuals as the center of divinity and power shifts from an external figurehead to an internal authority. As we make this shift, the evolutionary pressures placed upon us are to now give up the necessity of conformity and become our own centers of authority and decision-making. Each of us becomes a center of divine power with access to our own inherent truth and individual way of being.

This transition feels like a crisis because as we step into our inner authority and divinity, we must give up deep-seated beliefs that we will be tortured and killed for doing so. Each of us has our own version of this story, and each of us has our own suppressed inner voice to claim.

The Pluto-Uranus Square
In 2011, this long-term transit came within a degree of exact, causing us to feel the collective crisis and impetus for change. In astrology, a ?square? means that two planets are 90 degrees apart in the zodiac (as they are viewed from Earth). Squares are felt as conflict, crisis, or pressure.

The square between these two planets is part of a cycle that began during the 1960s when the two planets were conjunct, or together in the zodiac (in Virgo). During the 1960s when Pluto, the planet of transformation, power, sex, and death met the planet of sudden change, individual expression, rebellion, and revolution humanity experienced a collective wave of awakening. Into existing power structures the archetypal truths of individual and sexual empowerment, social and environmental movements, substances that could instantly alter consciousness and perception, and cries for equal rights exploded like hot lava suddenly escaping from a long-dormant volcano.

The problem is, conjunctions are completely subjective. The energies emerge without knowing where to go, or what their ultimate purpose is. It is now our task, 50 years later, to decide what we are going to do with the energies that were unleashed during the 60s.

We are under the extreme pressure of this square ? stuck between a rock and a hard place ? or between the reality we have created and the freedom we can imagine ? and we are forced to choose what we are going to do about it. The Pluto-Uranus square will be in an exact 90-degree relationship a total of seven times between 2012 and 2015 (due to the fact that both planets are far away and move slowly, and also due to retrograde periods).

Outer Planet Placements in 2012-2015
Pluto: Pluto is in Capricorn. Pluto brings transformation and massive change to the sign of structure, tradition, and authority. It will continue to express itself through this venue, removing the security blanket of knowing what we can count on (financial systems? political structures? family structures?) and opening the doorway to rebirth. Pluto does not determine the nature of the rebirth. We do that.

Neptune: Neptune shifts into its home sign of Pisces early in 2012. Renewal comes through new ways of knowing the divine, and spirituality opens us to new levels of awareness and understanding. Escapism into altered states (virtual realities? vision quests on crack? giving our power away to illusions or false promises?) and other substitutes for knowing the infinite nature of divine source are the pitfalls we must avoid. On the positive side, infinite potential and divine love become real and accessible.

Uranus: Uranus is in Aries. Uranus is the planet of individuality, rebellion, and authentic expression. It is taking us through the journey of Aries: the sign of pure essential being. We must be the Aries warrior and fight for what we believe in, for what our inner authority knows to be right. We must also be the divine fool and not be afraid to make mistakes. Aries is the sign of action without thought, of new life as it strives to understand what it means to exist. Without movement, without trying, without risk ? we will die inside.

So, in a nutshell, we are creating a new world. What will this new world look like? We are deciding. We are deciding right now and in every moment. Our choices determine our future.

The universe is asking: will you speak, act, and choose out of fear and the limitations of the past? Or will you honor your past choices while giving yourself permission to choose differently?

Will you choose from the heart? From the truth? From courage? Are you willing to stand up and create a new future that is based not in what you know, but what you can imagine?

By knowing yourself, you can make choices that emerge from who you are, and not what you are trying to protect yourself from. I suspect that as we grapple with who we really are, doorways will open to an incredible future.


To integrate the profound energetic support of the planets, discover how Manifesting with Moon Cycles can help you align with your highest potential.

? Marina Ormes 2012-2013. All rights reserved.