December MMXX | A.W. Clovenhopf

“The ripeness or unripeness of the occasion (as we said) must ever be well weighed; and generally it is good to commit the beginnings of all great actions to Argos with his hundred eyes, and the ends to Briareus with his hundred hands: first to watch, and then to speed; for the helmet of Pluto, which maketh the politic man go invisible, is secrecy in the council, and celerity in the execution; for when things are once come to the execution, there is no secrecy comparable to celerity; like the motion of a bullet in the air, which flieth so swift as it outruns the eye.”

-Francis Bacon, in "Of Delays" from Essayes or Counsels, Civill and Morall (1625).

The end of 2020 is a symphonic wrap-up of this catastrophically eventful year. The overture of March through May waltzed through the summer months, and now, in December the fortissimo coda. Horns blaring, timpani sounding, those attuned to the music of the spheres notice a change in tempo. Jupiter and Saturn make their long-awaited conjunction in Aquarius on December 21st. As they’ve danced all around each other in 2020 moving through Capricorn, this moment acts as a crescendo to the year’s destructive powers, and a harbinger of the rebuilding process. Not to say things will immediately become more simple or manageable, but there is a feeling of clarity and streamlining.

Jupiter and Saturn working together enhance the theme of social responsibility. Saturn, the planet of discipline lining up with genial Jupiter suggests large-scale acceptance of a reality that requires direct, timely action. This conjunction is weighted with a shift in element from Earth to Air, a topic discussed in "The Great Air Mutation". This suggests that the twenty year cycle beginning here and now will have elemental themes different from those that have been dominant over the past 200 years, and act formatively for the next 200. Creativity, communication and new structures supporting those endeavors will be highlighted.

Additionally, Mars has been busy writing his own opus which culminates early in 2021. We feel tension all month, as our warrior prepares for a final doomed charge against Pluto. On December 11th, Mars is in an encouraging angle with the Sun in Sagittarius. Mars’ win-at-all-costs attitude is becoming tiring at a time when so many are losing on such a large scale. Sagittarius has spears at the ready, and what could be a pleasantly motivating time has the potential to slip awry into impetuous, ill-conceived aggression if we fall prey to the defensive attitudes and might-makes-right authority that may abound at this time.

This action is punctuated by a solar eclipse in Sagittarius on December 14th. Jupiter, the ruler of this lunation, is still trapped in Capricorn between heavyweights Saturn and Pluto. This suggests that travel remains limited through the next few months. The eclipses between Gemini and Sagittarius started on June 5, 2020, and continue through December of 2021. Social movements which had gained steam during the summer season may see resurgence now. The axis of Gemini and Sagittarius asks us to differentiate between truth and belief. Neptune’s square to this eclipse begs the question, ‘What happens when facts are perceived as opinion and opinions are held as facts?’

A refusal to compromise at this time can lead to more volatility around December 15th as Mercury instigates an already testy situation. Try to gain some objectivity or outside perspective during this time. The astrology of this moment makes it particularly difficult to separate the desires of our ego from our long-term interests.

On the longest night of the year in the North, December 21st, Mercury sneaks into Capricorn’s throne room undetected. Entering stage left as Jupiter and Saturn exit stage right, he clears the way for an imperial entry. The Sun’s movement through Capricorn helps to clarify what we need to address during the upcoming season and also begins to honor the work we have been doing behind the scenes over the past year. Mercury helps count the damages and replenish necessary fortifications. The messenger planet heeding the call suggests that much of the focus of the upcoming season will be on counting – how much, how little, where to increase, where to cut back. If you’ve been struggling to get clear on data or statistics you’ve been working with, this astrology should help. Saturn and Jupiter switch their Capricorn style wool-flannel suiting for their flowy, Aquarian robes in preparation for their next act.

Mars is moving direct through Aries, but remains in the shadow until the first few days of 2021. Aries is a selfish sign – not intended as a cosmic dis, but there’s a need for self-preservation wherever Aries falls in our charts, even if that means making others bristle at our choices. This suggests that if we’ve done our homework and addressed problems with honesty and humility we are now clearer on our desires and direction, and recognize what we need to do to take responsibility for our choices and action towards our goals. However, that aforementioned selfishness is a complicated issue—an uncritical approach to Mars in Aries can manifest as a temper-tantrum style reaction to any inconvenience.

On December 23rd, Mars makes a final aggravating square to Pluto, but it looks more like an ambush than a triumphant culmination of Martial glory. Seated calmly in Capricorn, The Lord of Death, Pluto, grows weary of Mars’ antics and crushes any mutinous efforts. Loyalty to an outdated way of life has impeded progress and will be transformed. This theme may culminate on the world stage, as there is a feeling of ‘adapt or perish’ to the astrology. On a personal level, if our presence, courage and ambition are directed towards worthy goals we may feel discouraged, but we must recognize that any restriction or restructuring brought about by the needs of the moment are perhaps larger than our own personal aims.


ARIES: Holding on to your willpower in the face of loss and challenge has been a huge challenge for the past few months. I encourage you to keep plodding away and find helpful outlets for the stress you’ve been feeling. The middle of the month encourages you to reach out with an olive branch—you may find more allies than you had anticipated.

TAURUS: You may feel a little out of your element for the start of the month, but hang in there. Sometimes a little discomfort shows us where we’ve become too rigid or thoughtless in our approach. The middle of the month sees you trying to reconcile and smooth over some ongoing struggles, which you may not be able to address sensitively without first having felt a little put-out.

GEMINI: The Sagittarius eclipse on the 14th seems to hold extra meaning for you. Issues of integrity in speech, moral decisiveness and how you broadcast your message are all hot topics. Rather than thinking of this as the end of the era, see it as a super-charged new moon, bringing you a chance to try out some alternative facets of your personality. Your partner’s understanding of you may help deepen your understanding of yourself.

CANCER: Venus moving through your creative house has allowed you to get in touch with what brings you joy and pleasure. Keep that energy flowing during the upcoming season. A regular commitment to creative practice may turn from hobby to passive income as you find new ways to broadcast your talents.

LEO: Everyone knows you’ve got heart, Leo. What they don’t see is how much reassurance is necessary to keep that passion alive. An eclipse in fellow fire sign, Sagittarius, can remind you that the approval of others is way overrated. New creative instincts are blooming for you now, so don’t let constructive criticism slow you down—be strong enough to keep plugging away and take other’s input in stride.

VIRGO: Service towards and through your relationship has been a big topic for your sign. The eclipse on the 14th pits your longing for an ideal world up against the limits of your abilities and best interests. Changes in your career and home life now may sting, but they reflect necessary progressions. Particularly if your cup has been long empty, but you keep refilling everyone else’s.

LIBRA: With your ruler assessing the house of self-worth, perhaps you’re finding it’s a good time to declutter and sort through your material as well as emotional assets. The eclipse on the 14th sees you needing to let go of some tricky habits in communication and thought processes that have been impeding your success. Surprising communications at this time can highlight the discrepancy between how you see yourself and how the world interprets you.

SCORPIO: Intensity and passionate connection are finally starting to return to you after a season of feeling drained and disinterested. Venus’ movement through your sign suggests that finances and creative projects may start to improve, particularly after the eclipse on the 14th, which highlights your ambitions and confidence.

SAGITTARIUS: The eclipse on December 14th is in your sign, suggesting that your ability to learn from past mistakes may help get you out of hot water. If you’ve been ignoring those lessons, don’t miss this opportunity to escape the confines of narrow thinking. Recognizing that your opinion is not the only one will take you further faster than trying to convince everyone else otherwise.

CAPRICORN: Your dreadfully serious commitment to your work has been serving you well this year. It looks like you’ve achieved much at a time when others were floundering, and managed to find renewed commitment to your tasks. The eclipse on the 14th wants to highlight areas where you can afford to relax a little bit—even if that means just carving out twenty minutes of unstructured time.

AQUARIUS: You may find yourself taking on a more social or public role after the eclipse on the 14th. Happening in your forward thinking, network-growing house of long term strategy, you may be rendering some dreams as complete and beginning to look for those who can help you with the next steps. Enjoy this time. Things look like they’re going to be getting very busy for you so party when you can.

PISCES: Neptune moving through your sign has increased your sensitivity, but also your feelings of confusion. The issue represents two sides of the same coin—as you become more attuned to others, your own aims seem to lose their importance. You’re starting to get back in touch with what you need and will soon have the confidence to ask for it.


ARIES: The attitude of Aquarius really suits your style, Aries. Both of you crave independence, and are happy when given free rein to be as wild as you want to be. Jupiter and Saturn’s movement into Aquarius suggests that it’s going to get a little easier to be yourself in the next few years. You may need some adjustment time as your career and public image catches us to where you’d like to go, but keep blazing those trails, Ram, the planets support you.

TAURUS: Sometimes we keep doing things because they are familiar, not because they serve any particular use or purpose. You may have an experience this winter where you realize you’re expending so much energy trying to keep things the same for no real reason. Question your habits, particularly if it makes you feel a little uncomfortable. It will make upcoming changes feel a little less jarring.

GEMINI: Your observation skills are a bulwark to all of us right now, Gemini. Your ability to hold all the facts without passing judgement make you the celestial favorite. Experiences in the middle of the month may force you to choose a side. You are uniquely positioned to use your powers of critical thinking and acceptance to usher in understanding.

CANCER: As if there wasn’t enough action this month, we wrap with the full moon in the homey sign of Cancer on the 30th. You may have some old grudges simmering on the backburner right now, Cancer, but don’t let it ruin your chances for future happiness. The planets are giving you a chance at resolution for long standing issues with work and health habits before they begin to affect your relationships; don’t blow it by holding on to old resentments.

LEO: It’s time to examine your commitments and express gratitude towards those who have helped you get where you are. As the King of the zodiac, sometimes you may be loath to admit your need for an adoring public. However, with Aquarius (humanity in general) on your solar relationship house, astrology tells us that you need fans. You are reminded now of how much you miss the stage, so take this as an opportunity to prepare for your eventual return.

VIRGO: A new attitude can make all the difference when facing a tired situation. Changes in your work environment might be brought about by a sense of cheerful discipline rather than sarcastic resignation. The friendly mood of Saturn and Jupiter in Aquarius suggests that either your efforts are finally starting to pay off, or you’re getting some perks that make the day-to-day a little more bearable.

LIBRA: Fellow air sign, Aquarius, hosting Saturn and Jupiter bodes well for your creative drive and relationships. You look to be having a bit more fun over the next few months, but also shouldering a bit more responsibility in equal measure. This will be highlighted with the full moon on the 30th. Trust your intuitive faculties and if a door opens in your career, it may be worth a peek.

SCORPIO: Saturn and Jupiter moving into your home sector can mean both struggles to attain satisfaction in your home life and a better home life than you had previously dreamed of. With Saturn, the effort pays off. With Jupiter, things tend to look simpler than they are. This is not a time to scan over the fineprint, or attempt that large home rewiring project on your own, Scorps; expert advice now can save you a lot of trouble later.

SAGITTARIUS: You have been forced to find new ways to communicate lately, and will be meeting challenges to your thinking again and again over the next year. Your ruler moving through Aquarius suggests being open to innovation and thinking outside the box are more important than ever. Jupiter moving in lockstep with Saturn at the end of the month suggests that you can’t just run when things get difficult—and it’s ultimately more rewarding when you opt to push through.

CAPRICORN: It looks like what felt like a stuck situation is finally starting to budge and you are being afforded a little more breathing room. Angles to Uranus and Black Moon Lilith mean this may not happen without some instability on your part, but changes are finally happening, if you’re willing to relax your controlled grip on things for a bit.

AQUARIUS: I’m most excited and unsure of how to write this horoscope, Water Bearer. It’s like the Fifth Dimension song – we really are entering an Age of Aquarius. Your cleverness and steadfastness to a cause will inspire all of us over the next few years. Perhaps you are still uncertain of your role? Don’t worry; just being honest about your process of discovery is already keeping on track with the times. The biggest danger at this time is that of disassociation. Your ability to ride roughshod over your emotions has helped you get through some difficult situations, but now, you need to feel it to move beyond it.

PISCES: Understanding the complexity of your connection with the cosmos may be an impossible task, but if anyone’s suited to sorting it, it’s you, Pisces. The Saturn/Jupiter conjunction happens in your house of closure, endings and transcendence. Your process of assimilating your own ego with the collective is taking on a new MO. If you find yourself needing more time alone than usual, honor that need. Psychic insights and creative instincts will be running strong and need time and space to develop now.