The Year of the Neutral Mind. We’re about to embark on individual hero’s journeys that will change our society as a whole. This year, illusions will not linger for long. Hard work and steady growth will become the name of the game. As we face our shadows, we become more deeply connected to the voice within. What does your personal medicine look like? To what will you lend your strengths? Here’s the Cosmic Forecast for the month.
January 1 – 11
The year begins on a hugely optimistic note with a first-quarter moon in Aries and Mars, the ruler of Aries, moving into a fellow fire sign of Sagittarius. Mars has been hanging around in the shadow-adjacent, and somewhat karmic, Scorpio for quite a while so this transition will lighten up the mood all around. No longer interested in going inwards, Mars redirects its will towards truth and philosophy in the pursuit of liberation through a holistic vision of the world. It also trines Chiron early in the month, highlighting the spiritual dimension of our wounds and for many, this may spell the ending of the “dark night of the soul”. As we settle into 2020, Jupiter (who is coincidentally, or not so coincidentally, also the rule of Sagittarius) will stand conjunct with the South Node dispelling secrets from our pasts. On January 10, a challenging Full Moon in Cancer (which also happens to be a Lunar Eclipse!) brings emotional issues of home and family to the forefront of our experience.
What this means: The opening to the year is prepping us to absorb the sobering reality of our world and the work that comes after the illusion is dissolved. This energy grants us that initial jolt of awakening, almost too optimistic for the grit that the rest of the month (and really, year) will require of us, yet deeply necessary to prevent discouragement early on. Imagine the feeling that a warrior may have at the beginning of their quest, following a shattering of their mundane reality by an otherworldly call to a cosmic pursuit. Their personal past gains a new meaning, transformed by the broader insight, and the trials that will test their capacity have yet to arrive, so the awareness of the sacrifice required of them has yet to settle in. Instead, there is a sudden emergence of spiritedness and excitement for the next steps. But before long, it becomes clear that the warrior must separate from their home and family; they must face the pain of individuation that is required for their soul to grow. This is where we stand as the Full Moon rises in the sky – on the precipice of change, excited but grieving, about to leap into a new quest that somehow feels like it has been within our hearts forever. Need help moving through all the dense emotions? Join Krista for a special Full Moon: Friday Night Writes Class (January 10) where you can parse out all of the content while surrounded by transformative communal energies.
January 12 – 18
To call January 12, the day after a doozy of a Full Moon/Lunar Eclipse, anything but an astrological cluster f*ck would be extremely remiss. This is the day that truly sets the tone for most of 2020, imbuing the energetics of the year with the essences of Capricorn and those of the cosmos’ two toughest taskmasters, Saturn and Pluto. The conjunction of Mercury, Pluto, Sun, Saturn, and Ceres (an asteroid that is said to be the ruler of our deepest needs) in Capricorn allows our neutral mind to shine through, enabling us to make headway in any situation. Armed with enough information to change the world we begin the work immediately. This intense gathering does not last for long. Before the week is over, Mercury will move into Aquarius (which is still ruled by Saturn, so the duo does not lose track of each other too much) and Venus will enter the dreamy, all-is-one Pisces. This is the time for the “feet on the ground, and head in the clouds” mentality to truly shine.
What this means: Look, no one said it would be easy, right? Just that we’ll know deep in our hearts what it is all about and it will become increasingly hard to look away from what is not working. This is the price of awakening – we give up the illusion in favour of the truth so that we can connect more deeply to the voice of our soul and be capable of delivering on the personal mission that we born to do. Going back to the metaphor of the quest, January 12 is the moment when the warrior makes the decision and marches straight into the dark forest to face whatever may be hiding in its shadows. Right away the strength of the spirit is tested – there are limitations all around and the difficulties of the quest become painfully clear. Yet the overcoming of every block leads to greater mastery. Each task forces the warrior to face their shadow, to see that this quest was never a choice but the deepest need of the heart, that they need it more than they need their fears (or laziness, or whatever it is that was holding them back from stepping into their most realized, ambitious natures). Through the hardship, the warrior is transformed into a hero. Their heart is not sunk by the challenges but is set ablaze through the immense compassion and wisdom gained from each task. We’re going through this on both the individual and collective levels – let’s give each other a hand and become vision holders for the people around us. They are in the forest with you, battling beasts and monsters just like you. Some things that might help: Bir Kaur’s second workshop on Getting Rid of Suspended Memories (January 11), because some monsters are only the ghosts of the past. For Lotus newbies, David’s Beginner’s Workshop (January 12) and the free, monthly Aquarian Sadhana with Live Music (January 17) are an excellent way to get acquainted with the kundalini technology, a formidable tool in these high-pressure times. To build greater grit, turn to Dharm Kaur’s Chakric Workshop on the Lower Triangle (January 18), where the building blocks of our will are said to reside.
January 19 – 25
After the dramatic gathering in Capricorn, the energy of this week does not give up on the Saturnian influence but instead channels it through the lens of equally authoritative, yet substantially more liberated, Aquarius. The sun will enter the sign of the water barrier on the 20th, followed closely by a New Moon in Aquarius on Friday, the 24th. During this time of renewals, Venus will stand in conflict with Mars, which instead chooses to bond with Mercury. There is a sharp keenness to become one’s own guru – the mandate of the Aquarian Age. Your indulgent side may rather spend time lounging, but your mind is too stirred up by the influx of insight to allow you to rest. In this frenzy of cosmic action, you can emerge as your most authentic self, complete with the emotional freedom needed to make your way through any limitations around.
What this means: To be loved by an Aquarian, is to know what it is like to be loved from a distance. Their need for personal space and freedom is not a reflection of the relationship’s quality, but rather a manifestation of their expanded, self-contained, and visionary natures. For them, time alone is not defined by feelings of isolation or loneliness. Instead, they need the space to develop and process their emotions – this is what allows them to deliver their unique and often revolutionary brand of love with grace. This is the energy of this time. We will all need the space to process and release the things that prevent us from relating to the world authentically, especially the comforts that cloud our judgment. To stand in our power, to deliver our personal medicine to the world, we need the space where our will, our hearts, and our minds can come together without interference from the outside world. Take a moment during this new moon to shake all rhetoric out of your system and start the astrological month with a cleansed palette. For extra help, Refine Your Mind (January 25) offers assistance in accelerating your relationship with meditation. The deeply transformative sound of the gong – a Gong Bath with Multiple Gongs (January 18) and a special New Moon Gong + Kundalini Class (January 24th) – will help in carrying you through this empowering time. Aquarius’ other archetype is that of the activist – come learn what you can do for yourself and the planet at Jai Gopal Kaur & Kateri Gauthier’s Earth Love Workshop (January 19).
January 26 – 31
The month ends with a bang as Mars standing square with Neptune, energy not dissimilar to the one experienced a week prior when it conflicted with a Piscean Venus. Essentially, we are asked to channel our New Moon intentions into action, even if you must fight valiantly for it at first. Valuable successes rarely come without struggle; staying within your comfort zone will not allow you to gain much at all. But there is glamour, recognition, and glory to be found at the end of a worthy fight, though it may rouse controversy, intrigue, and maybe even a little bit of scandal.
What this means: Remember, there is no shame in becoming a hero. You were born to stand out, to be recognized for the sizable sacrifices and incredible gains that your unique path requires. Throughout this month, you have been flowing through the journey from which you will emerge as a celebrated and valued master of destiny. It is likely that you are feeling like you are at the end of your journey but remember that this quest will actually take you the entire year to complete. What you have experienced is simply a taste of the entire process, in one jam-packed bite. Still, does it not feel easier to be connected to your truth, your personal freedom? Do the obstacles not feel like a) necessary hurdles and b) so easy to overcome once you have mastered them once? You will not be surprised or trapped by the same illusions again. You may feel exhausted right now, and if somewhere along the way the disempowering trappings of the ego or social constructs have caught up with you, maybe even a little volatile and guilty for the personal vision that is driving you forward right now. If that’s the case, you may be experiencing the shadow of the squaring between Mars and Neptune. Luckily, this is the year of four – the year of the neutral mind. This type of negative, useless thinking will not last. Look at your situation objectively – are you really seeing the balanced picture? No? Question everything until you have arrived at the truth. Need some help unloading? The Breathwork Ceremony (January 25), and the brand-spanking-new Sharing Circle (January 26) are a great way to challenge yourself by bringing the shadowy bits into the light. To further purge anger and intense emotion, look no further than Bir Kaur’s unique offering that brings together TCM and Kundalini Yoga (January 26) to explore the role of the Wood element in our bodies.
I hope this serves you in some way. Enjoy this beautiful month of change and growth.
Marie Schoppen is a psychospiritual therapeutic practitioner based in Toronto, Canada. She offers clients Archetypal Guidance, Reiki, and Food Therapy. She is also Lotus’ resident newsletter writer.
Explore the rest of Marie’s offerings at www.schopiana.com.