the astrology of january 2021 | part 1 - accepting the invitation, january and february set up the year - january expands/explodes, february retracts/reality checks, saying yes to an uncertain future


We are in a kind of birth canal toward the Age of Aquarius and there is no going back (mommy!?)  - by the time Pluto enters Aquarius in 2024, it is certain we will be living in a whole new world. 


To some extent we are still determining what that world is going to look like/how this is all going to work, in other ways we are married to the future already. We've already put a ring on some of this. I hope we were smarter than we look.


Now Uranus (ruler of Aquarius, co-ruler really) is very unpredictable and MAJORLY activated in January - interacting with all the personal planets plus Jupiter (and then Saturn starting in February and really for the rest of the year). Collectively this is massive changes with our values and personal resources - with the way we see ourselves and everything else.

The first week of the year, the players start to get into their positions for the new game/level and then the first two months of 2021 really sets the stage for the year. BIG changes. We allow ourselves to be moved by the NEW in January, knowing that in February we will come back down to earth. Yes, there are great opportunities here (and challenges), some may even be MASSIVE, but we will need a little time to see everything clearly/unpack this.


We move from those Cappy squares to Aquarius squares. Primarily this month the Aqua squares are to Mars and Uranus in Taurus.  This is our friendships, our groups/causes, the goals that bring us into connection with other people, the future, tech, science, our mentors vs our values, our money, our resources, our physicality. This is your Aquarius natal house theme vs your Taurus natal house theme.


Some people, yes you, I'm talking to you, are going to have something insanely AMAZING - like dreams come true amazing - birthed through this year's process. If those old story-lines that have been put to bed were holding you up, they aren't holding you up anymore, and this meaning works two ways - "holding you up" as in literally supporting you AND holding you up as in holding you back.


January and February are very exciting/volatile. January is explosive/expansive energy. Ideas/events are popping. Some things will pan out/pay off and some will not. We need to be careful because we know next month the reality check is coming, so don't bet the farm. We are still dealing with the old 2020 energies, but the new energies very quickly take over. February is more retractive/here are those reality checks. Saturn will square Uranus and Mercury will station retrograde in Aquarius in February. Both kind of holding up the new.  


It's almost like the new/the shock in January is SO BIG we need a little time, we need it to retract a little in February and let us catch up with it.


Let's take a brief - is this brief?!, why am I still typing?! - look at the month ahead. I am going to be changing things up around here - less daily content that is stale at midnight and more big-picture/evergreen posts, and, so hopefully, more useful, content.

Keep in mind I am writing about aspects when they perfect/are most exact - we can find events playing out as they are applying or even unwinding sometimes, so the exact dates matter less than the energies. I have not included the Moon except in a couple instances - and the Moon is very important, but it's just not possible to factor her in here or my head might actually explode. 


We'll still do some dailies to keep up with Luna!


JANUARY 4TH - Mercury conjuncts Pluto (24 degrees Cappy). 


Mercury has been out of bounds since December 12th, so not operating by the usual rules. He/she comes back in bounds today, just hours before meeting with powerful Pluto. The last time Mercury met Pluto was last January when "time ran out". HERE is a post about that - see January 12th. The difference this year, and it is a VERY big difference, is Saturn is no longer in Cappy and not part of this year's meet-up and neither is the South Node and Ceres.

Mercury in Cappy - picture the serious reporter with the pencil behind his ear and his fingertips on the typewriter getting the important story out because he is doing his job - meets up with Pluto today giving Pluto (transformation/life and death) a voice. Honest communications. We get to the bottom of things. Conversations go deep - and maybe dark. Information is dug up. It may not all be things we want to know. Although on some level we are seeking any painful revelations. Discussions can be intimate. Good for research. Secrets are unearthed. Words (Mercury) are powerful (Pluto). Power struggles, communications with powerful people or where our own powerful underpinnings are awakened are possible. Shadow issues and what we do in the dark (sex, death, taxes, reproduction) are talked about. It's good energy to verbalize what we are carrying inside. It's probably important to note, Mercury is back in bounds here, so playing by the rules.


JANUARY 6TH - Third Quarter Moon - Libra/Capricorn (16 degrees), Mars enters Taurus (!)

The Moon at 16 degrees Libra squares the Sun at 16 degrees Capricorn giving us this month's Last Quarter Square. Squares are tension/frustration - this one carrying forth our Full Moon story (from December 29th - time to go). This speaks of issues/situations involving relationships and fairness. The Sun in Cappy is old rules, limits, traditions, authority. The Moon in Libra is always seeking balance, beauty, relationship, peace. Out of balance relationship situations (personal, work) come to light.  What needs to change here, so we can move on or continue? The Third Quarter Square Moon is a time of release/letting go, the Moon is losing light/letting go of the old New Moon story (23 Sag), as we begin to move into preparation for the next New Moon (23 degrees Cappy on 1/13). 

Mars has FINALLY finished up our 6 month journey through his home sign of Aries and moves into Taurus today. He loves Aries/is strong in Aries, his home sign, but he (as we) might be a little burnt out from all the passion/fire. We are probably ready to get down to solid work/hands in the dirt/plant the seeds. Mars wants to build something now, so let's give him (as us) something to build. New ways to make money, improve our resources, take physical action with things we can see/taste/touch. We want to take action that gives some kind of security/safety back to us in return. 


Keep in mind Taurus is the space in our natal chart that naturally encloses what we are here to nurture, preserve and grow. It may be a space we have a bit less passion and ambition because we most naturally feel the need to sustain what takes root here. A bird in the hand thing usually applies to the theme of whatever space Taurus occupies in our natal chart. The energy is cautious because the thing we are holding/carrying here is precious. It can also become the fear-based space where good things go to die - and then we carry around a bunch of dead stuff like a crate of rotted vegetables and wonder why we are so tired all the time (and smell like moldy cabbage).


Normally Mars is forced to slow down when he gets into Taurus. A stop and smell the roses thing applies here, but after all these months in Aries and with Mars on a collision course with anything-can-happen Uranus in just a few days - we are just as likely to feel an increased build up to THAT. A kind of - change is coming. Here it comes. OMG. Electricity in the air.


JANUARY 8TH - Sun sextile Neptune (18 degrees), Mercury moves into Aquarius and squares Mars in Taurus, Venus enters Capricorn

The Sun in Cappy sextile Neptune in Pisces is as close as we are going to get to those Saturn/Neptune opportunities in 2019 - we did or didn't take advantage of. This is about making the dream REAL. Hard work makes the dream work - something like that. This can also be a reality check on our 'escape' machinations, but sextiles create opportunities, so this is mostly a good thing. At the same time Mercury leaves Capricorn for the lighter space of Aquarius. Mercury is much happier here answering to Uranus - the higher mind/hive-mind. 


Mercury (our thinking, information, communication) FINALLY gets into an air sign today with his/her move into detached and future-focused Aquarius. Yes, it's fixed air, so people are not always flexible, but at least we've got some air! Aquarian detachment can be our friend. We step back. We view our situation from an observer position. Does what we are saying/signing/thinking/writing MAKE intellectual SENSE?! 

Some people think Aquarius represents independence (that's Aries), but more accurately Aquarius represents individuality. Think about it. There is an independent spirit here, yes, but since Aquarius rules the 11th house of groups, it shows people bound together by a cause. So, in Aquarius we find a better way to work together so it benefits everyone or else we go our own way. These are the only two outcomes for Aquarius. Aquarius is the space in your chart where it's never going to work to follow the crowd just for the sake of fitting in, you will always have to do things differently. Our rough, uncomfortable rebel edges are there for a reason.

So, three things happen when Mercury changes signs.

Mercury changes (the conversation changes, our thinking changes, we are more innovative, we can detach emotionally from our thoughts, there is more air in this room so maybe we can breathe easier). The house Mercury exits changes (Cappy house slows/relaxes a tiny bit). The house Mercury enters changes (Aquarius house - gets busy busier).


Almost immediately Mercury moves into a square with Mars freshly minted in stubborn Taurus. More of that electricity stuff we were talking about. Fixed air vs fixed earth. Something needs to give and nothing will. Our actions with our resources, our values, our money are clashing with new ideas/conversations/information. This might also speak of sibling, local community, transportation or tech issues. Mercury wants the new and not to think about what needs to be maintained. Liberating words are clashing with our security-driven actions. Mars says "we still need to make money, we still need to eat." Maybe we are challenged to walk our talk as what we are saying is not lining up with what we are doing. 


Mercury in Aquarius is bright/new ideas/new conversations, agreements or paperwork (this might also be something that involves a group/cause/Aquarius theme) and Mars in Taurus wants a physical result. A return on our investment. We want, whatever this is now, we want it in our hands.


Venus (love, money, women, values, self-esteem, beauty) moves into Capricorn today.  Capricorn is the sign of structure and discipline. In Capricorn season (winter) these are the qualities that kept our ancestors alive. When Venus visits this space of the heavens these are the qualities that help us attract what we want and need.

Capricorn Suns and Risings get more attractive now (more able to attract what they want and easier on the eye). Our Capricorn houses (natal) become more attractive, too. Enjoy this energy dear Cappys - you have most decidedly earned it. Invest in yourself now!


Remember last summer when everyone was mashing it up in Cappy, Venus was going back and forth through Gemini - the delays enabling her to be HERE NOW just when we need her. So, she is going to cross over all the HOT Cappy degrees during this crazy month.

This is the time to get serious with Venus ruled themes.

Venus in Capricorn is an excellent time for organizing our finances so we can attract more money that sticks. Instead of here comes the money then here comes the bill, or vice versa. And this isn't about hoarding, but a few benjamins in the bank is what allows Venus in Cappy to sleep at night.


Venus in Capricorn allows us to recognize we attract what we earn

(ie if we've attracted it, we HAVE earned it),

so we get to KEEP it.

We really only have to earn everything by the sweat of our brow if we believe we do, although with Venus in Capricorn there might be sweat!

Tradition will become a focus - the way something has always been done. This doesn't mean we will continue doing things the way we've always done them, there is a hell of alot of energy in future-focused Aquarius, but these older things and ways will come to our attention now. We get more serious about love, too. If something isn't going anywhere, this can be the transit we cut it loose. Our focus returns to what is real. We attract stability and longer lasting success/love/money by finishing what we start and honoring our commitments. Venus will be in Capricorn until February 1st.


JANUARY 9TH - Venus (1 degree Capricorn) trines Mars at 1 degree Taurus, Sun inconjunct North Node, Mercury conjunct Saturn - this is a BIG day (although as always the energies can play out as they apply and as the release, not always at the exact time).

So, almost immediately as Venus and Mars both get grounded in earth signs - they trine each other. Smooth flow. Cappy/Taurus. Practical. What we want and what we have to do to get what we want working together ie our actions get us what we want. Nothing needs to be forced here. This is powerful personal energy between our Cappy and Taurus houses.


Now this isn't happening in a vacuum because we also have the Sun inconjunct the North Node (rock and a hard place) and Mercury meeting Saturn, so let's unpack that.

Mercury meeting Saturn can bring sobering news/reality checks. We ignore this at our own risk because next month we begin the year-long Saturn/Uranus squares. 


Pay attention. MAYBE THIS IS WHERE THE BRIGHT IDEA COMES IN. Mercury squared Saturn back in early November - Libra/Cappy. Back then through tension/frustration we turned a corner (relationship imbalances, something wasn't fair, we were tested). Now they meet - results given - in Aquarius we can step-back and detach a bit from things. Maybe see the reasons things have played out as they have, maybe not. Either way a new Mercury/Saturn cycle kicks off - this time in Aquarius, a sign Mercury loves and Saturn co-rules. This is good. New ideas/conversations that have legs/can be made real. Pinocchio can become a real boy. We just need to watch out for the Aqua traps of over-thinking or getting too detached. Also note Mercury is approaching her/his square to Uranus, so back up your files.

The Sun (at 19 Cappy, so approaching those UBER hot degrees, although maybe less hot than they once were) inconjuncts the North Node in Gemini. The Cappy/Gemini rock and a hard place. We've talked about this when Mercury hit this degree. The Sun in Capricorn is serious. His/her mind is on work. And Gemini needs variety/breathing room/doesn't like the boss breathing down her neck. That Gemini North Node is requiring us to do a little of this and a little of that and to take breaks as needed. If our Cappy ego can bend to accommodate this we can work with this energy/get it done. Otherwise, Gemini cannot meet Cappy's demands, so our emanating/burning fuel like a Cappy isn't helpful to our moving forward. There is a warning here about being too rigid/maybe too bossy. Yes, keep an eye on the bottom line/your goals/priorities BUT don't forget our path forward - GEMINI! - is about having a beginner's mind/asking questions/making conversation. Ideas/words need to move about - no hoarding. Winter is already here, it's too late for that. Something to keep in mind now is we have a BIG eclipse coming on June 10, 2021 at 19 degrees Gemini, so where the North Node is now - this will start to activate on May 10th, so these rocks and hard places now need to be attended to. Again stay flexible. 

JANUARY 11TH - this is a FOUR STAR DAY - even the Cappy Moon is making all kinds of nice moves (money, career, our goals, action, change, the future) - Mercury conjuncts Jupiter (5 degrees Aquarius), Mercury and Jupiter both sextile Chiron

GOOD NEWS. Lucky conversations/ideas. Being in the right place at the right time. Saying just the right thing. Whatever is going on now brings the opportunity to heal very old and very deep wounds. These Chiron sextiles happening as Mercury and Jupiter launch a new/hopeful story is a good thing. A very good thing. 


JANUARY 12TH - things get a little more challenging. That's OK, this is how life works. Now, Venus from 5 degrees Cappy squares Chiron - remember she is getting pulled into the old Cappy story because we AREN'T QUITE DONE WITH IT. Our money, our resources, our SELF-ESTEEM, something is getting jolted. Tension, frustration. Maybe we aren't getting what we want here. We could feel rejected/not enough. We have to move through this - stay sober/do our job - and we will, because in just two days she will be trining (brakes off) Uranus (liberation/the future). Things will get better. Our vulnerabilities may be on display now, but it somehow ends up a good thing. Leans us into change. Just keep embracing the new and releasing the old!


Mercury (6 degrees Aquarius) is squaring Uranus. Unexpected news. Disruption. Financial, resources, self-esteem challenges. The good news - this won't be part of a three-peat, because Mercury, set to station retrograde in a couple weeks isn't walking his/her shadow degrees just yet. Mercury's next move is a smooth trine to the North Node in a few days, so we are going to have to, and will, get through/survive this square.

Our Aquarius and Taurus houses are uber activated and mashing it up. What are the themes of those houses in your chart - this is where to expect your personal challenges. For example, let's say you are a SCORPIO RISING - this might be your 4th and 7th houses - so home/family and partnerships. There is tension/frustration here. Forewarned is forearmed.


JANUARY 13TH - Venus (6 degrees Capricorn) trines Uranus in Taurus. New Moon at 23 degrees Capricorn. Mars (3 degrees Taurus) squares Saturn in Aquarius.


So, after her tussle with Chiron (ouch!) and Mercury's disruptive news, Venus moves into a smooth trine (no need to push) with Uranus. We are attracting change and we are attractive to change! Change is good. With Venus in Cappy we are embracing new goals/new work/new rules.


At the same time the New Moon in Cappy - which will get her own post, is conjunct Pluto - so pulls us right into tomorrow's Sun/Pluto. Mars is squaring Saturn - we had a couple of these last year from Aries/Cappy, but just get this one from Taurus/Aquarius. This is like a new fight that comes out of an old fight! 


They have moved from one house into another still swinging. 


Independent Mars in Taurus is determined to hold onto what he has/maybe even who he is and Saturn in Aquarius is new rules/new authority/a collective commitment. More battle of the Gods and happening as the Moon meets the Sun and the Sun is only hours from meeting Pluto!  


This New Moon is the birth of a new kind of power. That old Cappy storyline gets a funeral. Reality check. Brutal honesty. Power birthed through authenticity. Through the scorched soil of 2020. What the hell will ever grow here?! Well, we are about to find out. 


We will unpack this in a BIG post.

JANUARY 14TH - the Sun (24 degrees Cappy) meets Pluto. This is their annual check-in and reboot and it's BIG. Uranus stations direct, Mercury starts walking the shadow degrees of his/her upcoming retrograde (so pay attention to what is happening now, since we will be moving back and forth over it)


Here we are past the death/past the point in the game we always died before. Results come in. A new cycle, around how we handle power, ends and begins begins. The last time the Sun met Pluto, the world ended - we may or may not have noticed back in January 2020 - hindsight being 2020 and all, but over the last year we have surely ALL noticed. 


This time the South Node has moved on and so has Saturn (and Ceres and Mercury), so it's a whole different ballgame. 


Power/life and death comes to light. Merging/purging. The king is dead, long live the king. The truth comes out of the shadows and how we handle this - fear or embrace - is up to us, and sets up our new Sun/Pluto chapter. Are we busy dying or busy living? If power is stagnant/outdated it will crumble in the harsh light. If we are stepping into ultimate potential, our authority will be unquestionable. With Uranus stationing direct at the same time, here is disruption/change - something unexpected. And keep in mind all the Aqua energies answering to Uranus AND WAKING UP NOW - the Moon, Jupiter, Saturn, Pallas and Mercury!

As you can see MID MONTH IS HUGE and just keeps going. Have we ever seen anything like this? Something is earth shattering.

That's as far as I can get in one sitting. The rest of this HUGE month we'll unpack in the next post. It is kind of unbelievable and rolls out something like this:

JANUARY 17TH - Jupiter squares Uranus - this is a one-time aspect in 2021, we don't get multiple Jupiter squares as we do with Saturn - this one is bringing something NEW and something BIG. The new expands. With Jupiter ruling the South Node - this is changing old karma/our past/our beliefs IN AN INSTANT. This is Aquarius/Taurus - our future, groups, technology, our money. resources, self-esteem. This can look very good or very bad. Remember Jupiter's ability to make things seem larger than they actually are - when Mercury retrogrades back through Aquarius in February we will get a reality check with this - keep in mind 2021 will be two steps forward and one step back. 

JANUARY 19TH - Sun into Aquarius, Vesta stations retrograde

JANUARY 20TH - Mars conjunct Uranus - this is literally a bomb, so let's watch that we don't blow something up, Mercury trines the North Node, First Quarter Moon - this is the day of the United States Inauguration - the chart is major cray-cray.

JANUARY 23RD - Mars squares Jupiter, Venus sextiles Neptune and inconjuncts the North Node, Sun conjuncts Saturn

JANUARY 25TH - Sun sextiles Chiron

JANUARY 26TH - Sun squares Uranus, Neptune squares the North Node

JANUARY 28TH (!!) - Venus conjuncts Pluto, Sun conjuncts Jupiter, Full Moon in Leo - Hygiea is conjunct the Moon, Jupiter is conjunct the Sun - there is a fixed T-Square pointing to Mars who is sandwiched between Uranus and Black Moon Lilith! And Venus is conjunct Pluto at 25 degrees - yes Pluto hits 25 degrees. Oh my!

JANUARY 31ST - Mercury stations retrograde at 26 degrees Aquarius (works his way back to the degree he was walking on JANUARY 15TH where we were dealing with something HUGE) - so if something from the middle of the month was too good or too bad to be true - here is where we go back over them and find out.


There are going to be many opportunities to receive (and give and hold and build) in NEW ways in 2021. 


The invitations go out in January. 




In February we will get a more realistic look at what kind of invitation we have accepted/signed up for. 


Probably because if we knew the whole story we wouldn't sign up and life needs us to sign up/accept the invitation. Don't bet the farm, but don't skip the invitation even if it seems a little risky.

We just need to be looking ahead. 


Remember the Bible story about someone turning to salt when looking backward - who was that, my brain isn't cooperating? - it really doesn't matter, just remember the bottom line - DON'T LOOK BACK. 

xo all


back with Part II

photo by the talented Laura Zalenga


stregata said...

Wishing you a healthy and happy 2021, dear Cat.
Thank you for your dedication to these posts, I really appreciate it. And thank you for being here.
Big hugs, much love!

Catherine Ivins said...

Thank you Renate - the same to you! Big HUG! xo