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The last time that Saturn and Pluto conjoined in Capricorn was in 1518, 3 months after Martin Luther nailed his theses to the church door at Wittenberg and began the Protestant revolution against the transnational power of the day: the Catholic Church. 

Saturn and Capricorn both describe governments and the establishment, and Pluto describes a major power shift within that. So what are the equivalents today? 

The transnational power of today within Europe is firstly the EU, and Brexit formally took place a couple of weeks after the conjunction in January. So because of the astrology I think we have to read that event as pre-figuring a major shake-up of the EU and its power structures. I am stating this as a factual inference, not as a judgment in favour of or against the EU (it is very hard not to be taken as such these days.) This major shake-up will be reflected in Neptune's hard transit to the EU Angles, whic…


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The Saturn-Pluto conjunction isn't obviously descriptive of the Coronavirus pandemic - that is more Neptune's realm - but the unprecedented state control that has come in as a response is perfectly described by that conjunction, especially in the sign of Capricorn.

You generally need a bit of hindsight to get a sense of these challenging aspects between outer planets, as their themes gradually unfold over a period of years, and re-define the character of the world we live in. But I don't think that state control will necessarily be an enduring theme of this conjunction: after all, the current control is just a measure to contain the pandemic, and will end when it ends - if you live in a democracy, that is, where any government that tried to maintain the controls would not find that going down well at the polls. But it will now be there in the background as a possibility. 

We no longer knew, and maybe governments no longer knew, just how powerful they can be when they choose. That can of course be abused, but it is also a security for us, it means that governments can protect us, and it is easy to overlook this because collectively we are quite paranoid and thankless in relation to authority. We are childish in this respect. The danger in this is that while we concentrate on our dark fantasies, a government could sneak something in while we are looking elsewhere. Balance, not paranoia, is the best way to keep an eye on governments.

Having experienced the benign side of government control, attitudes may shift. And particularly in the UK, where the government exercises a light touch - be thankful for that! Appreciate that aspect of being British! So this would be a great outcome of Saturn-Pluto in Capricorn: the collective ability to give authority trust where trust is due.

I think the presence of Jupiter alongside Saturn and Pluto points to an over-reaction on the part of governments. The numbers of dead can seem striking on their own, but in the larger scheme of things - in the UK, for example, about 600,000  people die every year - it is quite marginal. We don't know all the reasons yet as to why the governments have acted as they have done. But as I say, because of Jupiter, I think it will with hindsight be seen to have been an over-reaction.

I think the deeper meaning of the Saturn-Pluto conjunction will start to become clearer through the nature of the aftermath of the pandemic, and how it will change the way we live.


I offer skype/FB video astrology readings, by donation. Contact: BWGoddard1 (at)

Coincidentally, I am re-reading the novel Things Fall Apart by Chinua Achebe. (I highly recommend the trilogy this book belongs to). It is set at that particular intersection where traditional tribal life was still being lived, but the modern world was starting to impinge. D’Arcy McNickle’s novel Wind from an Enemy Sky is similar, but set in North America rather than Africa.

I say coincidentally because of course Things Fall Apart is exactly what this coronavirus is doing to the world. In the book, there is a period of the year between the harvesting of the yams and the planting of the next crop where there is not much to do. Life in its usual busy sense comes to a halt. For them, this is normal. For us, our world is built in such a way, it is so busy, so extraverted, so fragile for all its economic power, that a major recession is being brought about, that will probably take years to recover from, by what is still just a few weeks of stoppage. Major Pluto aspects usually produce recessions, Pluto being a god of wealth. So I was kind of expecting one, but couldn't see why there should be. Now we know!

“What is this world, if full of care, we have no time to stop and stare,” sang the Welsh hobo William Henry Davies. 

To stop and stare, amidst the anxiety of which there is no shortage, is I think what we are being asked to do.  It is in this sense a natural balancing that is occurring. But because we are so out of balance, the remedy is extreme. And it is a remedy that we are collectively choosing, it is not just happening ‘to’ us. No-one is forcing the governments to shut everything down. We could have just carried on as normal, but with a higher death count. The governments have chosen not to. The governments are, ultimately, ourselves, they are a function of the collective, as Tolstoy was at pains to point out in War and Peace. Is this shutdown out of care for the older and more vulnerable people, or because the body count would look bad when it comes to re-election, or out of an exaggerated fear of death and of the unknown? Who knows. Probably all of those reasons and more.

What we do know is that collectively we have chosen this time to STOP, and therefore to align ourselves with what is within. An extreme of extraversion has produced its opposite, and I think this has an inevitability to it. Just as the boom times produce regular recessions, where we are forced to examine the imbalances of what has gone before. This seems to me to be the deepest reason that the world is stopping, and it has been our collective choice, as I am taking pains to point out! Somewhere, some deep part of our collective wants this. Hallelujah!
And this is Saturn in his role as guardian, instead of the denier, of the inner life. Saturn is usually the worldly taskmaster who is fond of telling us that only that which is observable and measurable has value. In this extraverted world of ours, it can be a lifelong struggle for introverts to feel the value of who they are. Remarkably, we are having a rare collective moment where slowing down and re-assessing is required. And maybe this will point to an enduring meaning of Saturn-Pluto in Capricorn: a time of proportion, of living more according to our means and our needs instead of  according to demented fantasies of unlimited growth and consumption. Jupiter, the planet that describes where we find meaning, has appropriately come up alongside Saturn and Pluto.
Now for a Shamanic interpretation, read no further if that is not your interest!

This is where, on the Medicine Wheel, healing begins: through the East, with an intervention from Spirit that we cannot directly cause, only prepare the ground for. That has been the coronavirus. We then have the choice whether to try and ignore that intervention, or to turn towards it. 

With that inward turning, which we have chosen through the lockdown, we can begin to move round the Wheel: firstly to the South, to the place in us that is wounded, in avoidance of which life has become so frenetic. So this will be the next stage of the coronavirus stoppage (perhaps): a sense of the inner lack that has been driving our thoughtless, thankless, taking attitude to our Mother, the Earth, and therefore to ourselves, for we are part of her, we are nothing but her.

And that will lead to the West, the Earth: incarnating those inner realisations. It is already clear that many more people will work from home in the future: this is slower, more reflective, and puts less pressure on the environment through travel requirements. And then to the North, the gradual integration of these new ways of living into our philosophies, into the ways we understand the world.