3rd Dec, 2008

The Inaugural Chart

As we lumber through the last fetid days of the Bush Devastation, intermittent flare-ups of the old impotent rage still erupt as stories of the soon-to-be-ex president’s final depredations seep into the press. Last minute rules are being pushed through to slash restrictions on industrial polluters and undo protections for worker health and safety. Diabolical attempts are being made to tie Obama’s hands on crucial environmental, healthcare, and economic issues, all with no regard for the beleaguered citizenry, but, rather, as a final bone thrown to Bush’s base, “the haves and the have-mores”. Meanwhile, here we sit, counting the days and the hours…

As has been shown repeatedly, one of the primary indicators of a presidential administration is the Inaugural chart, drawn anew for the exact birth moment of each successive four-year term. The Inaugural chart gives a general description of the feel of a presidential term, as well as pointing to the times when difficulties and crises are likely to unfold. The movement from the jurisdiction of one Inaugural chart to the next always indicates a huge shift and a significant turning of the page into new territory.

The Inaugural chart of January 20, 2009, is no exception. It will follow the very difficult 2004 chart which indicated a deep dislike of the Bush administration by the people (Saturn conjunct the IC, semisquare the Moon, opposite the Sun), as well as enormous frustration and failure at every turn (Saturn opposite Sun, Mercury, Venus, square the Nodes and Jupiter, conjunct the IC, quincunx Pluto, and semsiquare the Moon). The 2009 chart, in contrast, suggests a much more even- keeled and well-liked administration, although significant challenges and difficulties will be encountered over the next four years.

In the coming Obama administration, the president and his team will be seen as wise, thoughtful, and generous, and are likely to remain popular through many difficulties, due to the Sun/Mercury/Jupiter conjunction in the 10th house and sextile the Moon. Jupiter is also semisquare the Venus/Uranus conjunction, lending vision and wisdom to the innovative Uranian tendency to think outside the box and helping the administration to “land on its feet” (Jupiter) during times of unexpected crisis (Uranus). Saturn, however, is opposite Venus/Uranus, and is likely to force constraints and frustrations on the drive to bring transformation and renewal. Saturn will ensure that all creativity be conscientious, cautious, and grounded in reality, as well as sometimes slower than desired.

There are several aspects that help to break up the tension inherent in the Venus/Uranus opposition to Saturn, enabling a steady and constructive movement forward even in the midst of challenges. The Mars trine to Saturn mirrors the Mars/Saturn trine in Obama’s natal chart though the signs are reversed, and is suggestive of a responsible, thoughtful, and effective style. We have seen this quality in both the campaign and the transition, and it will continue to manifest as the cornerstone of Obama’s leadership going forward. In addition to the Mars trine to Saturn in the Inauguarl chart, Mars also trines the Ascendant and sextiles the Venus/Uranus conjunction. The Ascendant is sextile to Venus/Uranus and trine Saturn. This entire configuration enables constructive action in the midst of the sometimes stressful pull between the need for innovation (Uranus) and the recalcitrance of past patterns, financial limitations, and conservative opposition (Saturn). The well-aspected Mars in the sign of its exaltation (Capricorn) also suggests the unlikelihood of major war during this administration, with the military used in a more targeted, thoughtful, and effective fashion than we have seen recently.

There are those who have expressed concern over the void-of-course Moon in the 2009 Inaugural chart, with the Moon in the final minutes of Scorpio at noon on January 20. Normally, a VOC Moon indicates a kind of no man’s land between cycles which will shift only once the Moon moves to the next sign. The VOC Moon is defined as the period during which the Moon no longer has any aspects as it nears the end of a sign, indicating the end of a cycle. When the new cycle begins as the Moon enters the next sign, whatever happened during the VOC Moon period loses relevance. In this Inaugural chart, however, the Moon (29Scorpio46) is within a degree of sextile Mercury (00Aquarius41) and only 61 minutes from an exact sextile to the Sun (00Aqaurius46). Thus, the Moon would seem to be firmly connected to the “future” despite its placement at the end of a sign. The bridge experience between the past and the future that we have seen in the Uranus/Saturn opposition in this chart and that is a likely theme of the entire Obama administration would seem to be reflected in this aspect as well.

The coming four-year term contains many difficult aspects in the chart of the United States. Besides Pluto opposing the US Venus and Jupiter and squaring the US MC during 2009 and 2010, indicative of slow, intense transformation of America’s role in the world (MC) and its financial institutions and wealth, Saturn will be conjunct the MC, square to Venus, Jupiter, the Sun, and Mercury, and conjunct its own position between November 2009 and September 2012. These Saturn transits, other than the square to Jupiter, will all occur three times due to Saturn’s retrograde movement. Saturn implies the need for discipline and restraint, and often causes contraction and loss. It seems likely that the recession will be long and hard, with many bad habits and misguided legal structures to be undone and recalibrated for a healthy 21st Century economy. The retrograde Mercury in the Inaugural chart suggests a need to revisit and revise past mistakes before moving forward. In addition, the Inaugural progressed Venus opposite natal Saturn during most of 2012 will come at the same time as transiting Saturn square US Mercury and square US Pluto (11/2011 through 9/2012), suggesting that the struggle to get trade and economic issues back into a consistent level of prosperity may take the entire presidential term. In a country where instant gratification is endemic, this will be a bitter but necessary pill to swallow. Bad habits may die hard, but only by shedding them will a better future be possible. Obama’s leadership during this time and his continued vision for the way forward will be much needed. Inaugural progressed Sun conjunct Jupiter and then progressed Jupiter in 2011 and 2012 indicate he will fulfill this needed and uplifting role during a time of strain and transition for the nation.

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