It has been a grueling week: the sudden and brutal Boston Marathon bombing, killing three and injuring more than a hundred and seventy; the Texas fertilizer factory explosion, killing at least fourteen and injuring close to 200; the wild hunt for the Massachusetts terrorists that cost one young policemen his life, while another suffered grave injuries; and the deeply disappointing collapse of gun legislation, after which a disillusioned nation angrily mourned the irrefutable defeat of its democracy in a craven Senate beholden to the largesse of the weapons industry. President Obama has given some inspiring speeches in the face of these tragedies, but the shadows of grief and weariness are etched into his visage. The buoyancy and glow of earlier years is but a memory, replaced by a righteous fury and a relentless courage in response to the unremitting strain of recent days.
The carnage of Sandy Hook in December 2012 came with the first crossing of Saturn to Obama’s Neptune (8Scorpio36), a transit of deep grief and upset. At the same time, Pluto, Saturn, and Jupiter were aspecting US Uranus (8Gemini55), triggering the progressed Sun (8Pisces) square to US Uranus, and bringing sudden, powerful and disturbing circumstances that jolted Americans out of their somnolent attitudes, in that case regarding gun violence.
The second Saturn crossing of Obama’s Neptune, from April 9 through April 23, has brought with it a host of very stressful and upsetting circumstances that have weighed heavily upon the president. These feelings of grief and burden are being exacerbated by his progressed Moon square to progressed Saturn from April 11 through May 7. In the US chart during this time, from April 4 to April 19, transiting Saturn (8Scorpio55) made its second pass triggering the progressed Sun square to US Uranus, again bringing sudden and upsetting circumstances that rouse the country. The Sun/Mars conjunction from April 13 through April 18 described the exceptionally violent and explosive nature of these days. In addition, during the building dragnet mounted by police, FBI, and the military to catch the terrorists, the transiting Sun and Mars were squaring US Pluto (27Capricorn33), pointing to the intensified focus of US power to defeat an enemy.
There will be one more crossing of Saturn to President Obama’s Neptune (8Scorpio36), from September 6 through September 18, 2013. During much of this time, the transiting Node will be conjunct transiting Saturn (exact on September 16 at 8Scorpio35), stressing the feelings of grief likely during that 12-day period for some segment of the population, as well as for the president. Simultaneously, both Saturn and Pluto will be quincunx US Uranus (8Gemini55), forming a very potent yod, and again triggering the progressed Sun square to natal Uranus as that aspect becomes exact and at its peak strength. Thus, it unfortunately seems likely that the middle two weeks of September 2013 will bring another set of sudden and transformative (Uranus) circumstances that deeply stress (Saturn) both the country and the president. It will no doubt be another wake-up call about something we have been unable or unwilling to address, and the price may once again be steep.
A presidential term begins on January 20, every four years. The Inaugural chart is drawn for this moment and depicts the larger patterns that will unfold during a given administration. As the planetary relationships in that chart come to fruition by progression or are ignited by transit, we can often see when the described patterns will most starkly emerge.
During the presidency of George W. Bush, there was a marked difference between the first and second terms. His first Inaugural chart had a tight Uranus/Mercury conjunction square to Mars, and, with a slighter larger orb, square to Saturn. This extremely aggressive and obstreperous configuration described the vicious, unexpected attack of 9/11, as well as the unleashing of the two wars and the brazen domestic policies that came during that first term. The second Bush Inaugural chart, on the other hand, was steeped in very stressful Saturn aspects, pointing to the many failures that came during his second administration, including the handling of Hurricane Katrina, the incompetent prosecution of the wars, and the financial collapse.
In the same way, the two Obama Inaugural charts describe very different circumstances during the two terms. The first Obama Inaugural chart had a Sun/Mercury/Jupiter conjunction which maintained the administration’s popularity despite the ongoing recession and enabled the successful passage of several pieces of signature legislation. The ongoing financial difficulties and the intransigent resistance of Republicans were described by the Venus/Uranus conjunction opposite Saturn. Parallel configurations in the chart of President Obama and in the US chart also helped to define the unfolding situation, but the basic pattern could be discerned in the Inaugural chart.
The Inaugural chart of the second Obama administration incorporates the building energy of the Uranus/Pluto square, which is the reigning planetary aspect of this period, itself running from 2012 through 2015. This is a configuration of intense disruption to the status quo and the awakening of shifting, transformative historical currents. It heralds massive power struggles throughout the world. There may be revolutionary fervor or frenzied extremism in these movements, whether led by ardent political factions, zealous radical groups, warring sects, or fanatical terrorists. In any event, intense battles for control of political power, military gain, land, or resources are greatly energized during this period.
In the 2013 Inaugural chart, we find Uranus (5Aries14) square to Pluto (10Capricorn00) and Venus (14Capricorn27). As Uranus moves forward, it comes to the exact square with Pluto three times, setting off the energy of the square. We are currently in the midst of the first crossing of this configuration, from April 8 through April 27, just as the terrorist threat to the homeland re-emerges in a newly virulent form. The next crossing will be from September 20 through October 16, 2013, beginning towards the end of the treacherous two weeks in mid-September mentioned above. The following year, 2014, will bring Uranus into a square with Inaugural Venus, and 2015 will bring Pluto into a conjunction with Inaugural Venus, all of these no doubt directly involving the administration in further manifestations of the potent Uranus/Pluto tensions coming in the next few years.
The 2013 Inaugural chart also includes another potentially violent and disruptive configuration: a t-square with the Moon (19Taurus38), Mars (20Aquarius13), and the Node (23Scorpio44). This already volatile configuration is further agitated and inflamed by Uranus (5Aries14) which sits in an exact semisquare to both Mars and the Moon, and also is at their midpoint. Together, these planets point to anger, aggression, and unexpectedly violent or tumultuous events erupting at various times during the course of the second Obama term. Transiting Saturn will be triggering this configuration, likely in a very stressful way, when it thrice crosses 19-20 Scorpio: in December 2013; and in May and September 2014. The solar eclipse within minutes of the Inaugural Moon on May 10, 2013, adds yet another level of strain to that degree over the coming year. With transiting Saturn also square to Obama’s Ascendant (18Aquarius03) during the same periods, it is clear we are looking at some episodes of increased difficulty and burden for the administration. More on these at a later time.
There are times in human life when the proverbial pot is vigorously stirred, when the tectonic plates of our civilization shift, causing significant upheaval before things settle again into a new pattern. These are times of paradigm shift, when the entire definition of the geo-political reality adjusts. For a while, it may seem like we are collectively riding a runaway horse, but eventually things will calm, albeit after a period of turmoil and with a somewhat transformed institutional and cultural landscape. Personally, I am grateful that President Obama is at the helm in these turbulent times, riding the wild stallion of this Inaugural chart and negotiating the tempestuous twists and turns of the Uranus/Pluto dynamic. At this juncture, I would far rather a leader capable of deliberate and comprehensive thought, caution, and pragmatism than any of the ideologues or craven political operatives that might have been.