Copyright © 2009 All Rights Reserved

by M. Temple Richmond

World civilization today labors in the throes of a profound financial crisis. Bank failures, corporate collapse, and the sudden petrification of business credit leading to elimination of jobs all have combined to shatter the public faith and call into question most of the fundamental assumptions previously holding world commerce together. As the many recent revelations of corporate corruption, inefficiency, and ineptitude have demonstrated, this sudden re-evaluation of principles and procedures is necessary and timely. The crisis at hand has sparked not only that realization, but also a growing awareness of inherent weaknesses within the capitalistic model of economic functioning. The forces behind this evolutionary development are many. From the astrological perspective, the forces driving this dramatic change spring from long term astrological cycles. These provide the key to understanding present happenings and future prospects.

Pluto in Capricorn:
Upheaval in Commerce and Government
2009 - 2024

Quite simply put, Pluto is a little giant. Small in size and therefore demoted to planetoid status by science of late, Pluto has long been recognized by astrologers as quite the opposite - a major power to be reckoned with both in individual and collective astrology. Wherever Pluto influences, astrologers know there will be dramatic revelations and structural change.

Pluto's action at any time depends upon which sign of the zodiac it's in. Because Pluto's orbit is distant from the Sun, from Earth we perceive its motion to be very slow. Consequently, Pluto moves through the signs of the zodiac lugubriously, holding position in each sign for 12 or more years, the sum varying on account of Pluto's highly elliptical orbit. Presently, Pluto is in Capricorn, having just entered that sign to stay in early 2009. Pluto will remain in Capricorn for a good15 years, from 2009 - 2024, making these 15 years of great importance for all matters ruled by Capricorn, the sign of the Goat.

Astrological tradition associates the sign of Capricorn with enterprise, business, commerce, governance, power, ambition, status, and privilege. Managed properly, Capricorn can be of inestimable value to the individual and to society. But out of hand, it represents destructive forces based on greed and materialism. Capricorn is an earth sign, and its natural province is therefore in the area of physical provision, tangible goods, and lasting worth.,/

Obviously the power of Capricorn has to do with obtaining the necessities of life. However, when expressed in the extreme, the powers of Capricorn describe a stinginess of spirit which wants to keep only for itself and bears not the legitimate needs of others in mind.

Now Pluto arrives to blast away the pretense behind which big business has cloaked itself these many years. Just recently, Pluto acted via the US government as President Obama issued what many considered an astounding ultimatum to "troubled" car makers. Others considered his fix long overdue. Either way, Pluto has shaken the foundations of American business and made it plain that a new day has arrived. This is a good and necessary thing, and there will be more to come right through 2024. Greed and insensitivity to environmental responsibility have at last become unprofitable, at least in one critical sector of the US economy. And the change extends beyond specific situations to touch the underlying model of governance and economics. Yes, the nature of American government is changing and yes, simplistic capitalism is less hallowed than before.

The Vanishing Job Market:
Saturn in Virgo 2007 - 2009

This particularly vexing and disturbing element of the present crisis is driven by a number of astrological factors, including Pluto in Capricorn (2009 - 2024), an influence which is destined to permanently alter the face of world commerce. Pluto devastates to rejuvenate, and its aim is currently trained on corporate entities, which are ruled by Capricorn. The action of Pluto is first to brutally reveal the dysfunctional elements in any situation and then proceed to intensify them to the point of utter breakdown. Pluto in Capricorn now brings this action to bear on commerce, business, executives, the power elite, and those of privilege. Yes, it is Pluto indeed which has turned business as usual on its head and emptied out its pockets, shaking loose the overpaid cream-skimmers previously located at the top. But this, too, is a good thing, as the policies and procedures of major employers have left much to be desired for many a year. Even so, on the way, many innocent bystanders have been gravely affected by the loss of employment.

Yet another factor contributing to the vanishing job market is to be found in the current sign transit of the planet Saturn. From September of 2007 through October of 2009, and then again from April 2010 through July 2010, Saturn moves through the sign Virgo. Virgo rules a number of important areas of life, including service, employment, and the work force in general. Saturn tends to limit and restrict where it touches. Thus, throughout the Saturn transit of Virgo, the work force feels the touch of constraint which comes from this planet. This will change for a few months in late 2009 and early 2010 when Saturn moves temporarily into Libra, and then for good after July 2010. Here is a clear indication that the distressing paucity of available jobs will stop being such a source of anxiety by late 2010. There will even be some progress in this direction during the last quarter of 2009 and the first quarter of 2010. This is probably one of the single biggest reasons for optimism on the horizon. Saturn will move into Libra to stay in late July 2010 and the onus will no longer fall upon the mass of workers and employed persons. This will help across the board to ease the present world financial crisis, as persons re-stabilize into some kind of remunerative activity and therefore have cash to circulate.

Meanwhile, the planet Uranus is passing through Pisces, hence in opposition to Virgo (the sign of the work force). Therefore, by opposition, Uranus is acting upon the masses of employed persons, imbuing them with its energy of self-awareness, individuality, innovation, and self-reliance. This strongly suggests that individual initiative (and not reliance upon vast corporations) will be required of the masses, breaking the previous pattern in which employment by large corporations had become the norm. A new norm for employment is emerging. It's called self-employment. And along with this will come vast disruptions of the so-called health care delivery system ( also ruled by Virgo), as benefit packages become unraveled forever and workers face the fact that alternatives to dependence on outrageously expensive conventional medicine will be required. On top of that, over the next few years, the whole belief that health insurance benefits should be tied to employment contracts will be called into question. A whole new face to the matter of employment is arising, and this current vanishing job market is just part of that, though it should not be forgotten that paying work will more easily be found as time goes on. The crunch on securing paid work will be alleviated for sure in late 2010.

The Real Estate Crater:
Pluto Opposite USA Venus

This one troubles homeowners and real estate agents. It's driven by all of the above mentioned factors and yet another - Pluto in opposition to the USA Venus. The USA Venus position hails from the day in history on which the Declaration of Independence was signed. Back then, Venus was located at 2 degrees of the sign Cancer. Cancer is the sign of feelings, the desire to belong, the family, the home, the house, tradition, history, community, and the sense of security. Venus in Cancer indicates that Americans derive much of their sense of personal identity, self-worth and comfort from property, home ownership, belonging to a community, and having the sense of security which comes from a definite place to live. This whole image or paradigm has just been imploded by the recent passage of Pluto through the 2nd degree of Capricorn, making an opposition to the natal US Venus. In fact, this arrangement is in place from January through June 2009, October through December 2009, and August through October 2010. In other words, Pluto will be wreaking its destructive havoc on the real estate situation in the USA for about two years - 2009 and 2010. Already the fake financing by which many were lured into precarious mortgage deals has been exposed for what it is. And there is more to come, as the entire complex of Cancerian values is ruthlessly re-evaluated and re-organized by Pluto in Capricorn, which demands accountability and bottom-line profits. It is therefore inevitable that the whole system by which home and property ownership was formerly achieved will be overhauled. Home values are not likely to rebound as long as Pluto squeezes the USA Venus position. Yet, this painful set of circumstances will not last forever, either.

Do Something Different
Saturn Opposite Uranus 2008 - 2010

This planetary arrangement happens once every 45 years or so and indicates that major revisions of approach must and will occur in many areas of life. The last such spawned the civil unrest and cultural upheaval of the 1960s. This one will change the face of world society similarly. It affects both the collective and the individual and evokes creative responses. A key skill for survival in this astrological environment is flexibility. That which resists from a standpoint of rigidity will suffer far more than that which adapts and thrives within the changing conditions of the times.

M. Temple Richmond AUTHOR: M. Temple Richmond