Monday, March 26, 2018

A timely outcry for change: the Astrology of Generation Sag & the March for Our Lives

If we’ve been wondering why this generation seems to be stepping up to the challenges of our Capricornian world so readily, we see it here: they were born into one of the most powerful Capricorn moments we’ve seen in our lifetimes, the Uranus-Neptune conjunction (exact in 2/1993).  
It’s interesting to me that the children of one Pluto generation almost always come of age under the next Pluto generation. For instance, my Pluto-in-Libra sons—often referred to as being from “Gen X”—came of age with Pluto in Scorpio, and their Pluto-in-Sagittarius children (roughly 1995-2008) will be coming of age during Pluto’s current Capricorn transit. So, it shouldn’t surprise us that the teens protesting on streets across the nation for common sense gun regulations this past Saturday (March 24th) are being hailed as a “Generation under fire” (Sagittarius), but collectively, they are taking on Capricornian responsibilities and demanding the same of the adults in their lives. 

This Sagittarian cohort was seeded in 1995, when Pluto entered their fiery, Jupiter-disposed sign, and my overall impression of them is that they are living out the promise of both Sagittarius and Capricorn. Every speech made in today’s D.C. rally rang with more fiery passion than the last, but the emotion was informed with a mastery of the facts, as well. The generation we see on display in this #NeverAgain movement is deploying their energy and efforts with maturity, with impressive unity and with full regard for the complex ways in which gun violence manifests in this nation. 


Before this exploration starts to become confusing, let’s pause to consider the necessary generational/individual disclaimer: it’s important to remember that a generational chart (we’ll get to that ahead) applies only to the entire Sagittarian cohort, as a collective entity. Generations have their characters, just as individuals do, and that’s what we’ll be considering when we look at this cohort’s Pluto ingress chart. 

Some individuals may capture the collective spirit of their generation more fully than others, but they all bear some imprint of Pluto’s time in Sagittarius. No doubt, Sagittarius expresses its nature and qualities in a myriad of ways, so many individuals will dispute the direction their generational peers are going with #NeverAgain. 

In fact, differences have surfaced within the Marjory Stoneman-Douglas community, especially over the issue of armed security. It would be unnatural for there not to be differences of opinion. Even so, there’s broad agreement that students should feel safe in school, and that our current laws and gun culture fall far short of achieving that goal. 

Long story short, any points I make here about the Sag generation are meant to reflect both its broadly shared qualities and the collective trends it embodies, not the endless variations expressed by individuals. To understand an individual’s actions, we would turn to his or her natal chart, along with transits, etc.

At the March for Our Lives, March 24, 2018

At the March
Back at the March, some speeches we witnessed tell us that these #NeverAgain kids are aware that their movement is not just about school shootings by mentally deluded or emotionally isolated suburban kids; it’s also about systemic social issues, such as gang violence driven by economic injustice and lack of opportunity. 

It’s also about “growing up Black”…and Latino…and so on, in a time when the “school-to-prison pipeline” for people of color is a dangerous reality, and when a "war-zone" environment and troubling police violence is a daily fact of life in many communities. All these communities of color were represented and celebrated in the protest speeches. 

In tune with their Pluto sign, Generation Sagittarius (henceforth, “Gen Sag”) is clearly aware of the broader public health context that surrounds gun violence in schools, and they’re not interested in short-sighted, band-aid solutions. 

Simple, strong statements dominated the day.

The protestors’ speeches also rang with clear Sagittarian logic, easily revealing the NRA’s “Guns don’t kill people…people kill people” mantra for the distortion it is. We heard again and again, that the common menacing factor in all forms of gun violence is easy access to the guns. No one called for the end of reasonable gun rights (onerous restrictions would be strange for Sagittarians); all they want is common sense regulations (Capricorn) that keep guns from getting into the wrong hands. 

Closing the so-called “gun show loophole,” where guns change hands like cupcakes at a bake sale. Banning weapons intended for war, like the AR-15 rifle, and so on. 

They want gun laws to reflect that their lives are valued more than an NRA campaign contribution—they even wore “price tags” to illustrate. They want their right to life to be part of the gun rights calculus. They want to feel safe in their schools and in their neighborhoods, and who can argue with that?

A powerful, coming-of-age reality

Stepping up in a Capricornian world

The fact is, Gen Sag is now maturing into the “dog-eat-dog” Capricornian world they are destined to lead, and they’re learning how to effectively deploy their Sagittarian fire and spirit in that world. While Sagittarius on its own might lose interest in a problem once it’s been mentally/philosophically teased apart and “solved,” Capricorn has no patience with the hypocrisy of those who would send “thoughts and prayers,” and then do nothing—Capricorn wants action.  

Capricorn also persists over the long term: these kids aren’t going anywhere, and they seem to know it’s going to be a long battle. Capricorn’s persistence also means, of course, that the corporate gun industry isn’t likely to give up its lucrative weapons honey pot without a no-holds-barred fight. We’re already seeing plenty of attempts to discredit and infantilize the #NeverAgain kids and their mission: Rick Santorum is reported as saying that they should “learn CPR” instead of getting involved in the gun debate.  That almost comes across as a threat, doesn’t it?

Expressed with integrity, Saturn-ruled Capricorn also rejects deception and “spin,” preferring concrete facts. It’s no accident that David Hogg, a dynamic speaker and one of the young Parkland leaders and organizers of today’s D.C. event, was sporting a button on his lapel today that read “We Call BS.” This motto was echoed in many signs held by protestors, as well.

A constant theme in the protest.

Capricorn also prefers clear and concrete goals and priorities, so this new movement has issued a carefully conceived list of them. The Eagle Eye, the Marjory Stoneman-Douglas student newspaper published this list, and the Guardian US invited the students to relay that message to their much more expansive readership by “guest editing” a similar piece, entitled “Our manifesto to fix America’s gun laws.” It’s well-worth the read. Even the lead-in to their list reflects the hard-won, Capricornian wisdom these insightful young Sagittarians have gained:

“We have a unique platform not only as student journalists, but also as survivors of a mass shooting. We are firsthand witnesses to the kind of devastation that gross incompetence and political inaction can produce. We cannot stand idly by as the country continues to be infected by a plague of gun violence that seeps into community after community, and does irreparable damage to the hearts and minds of the American people.”
Did they receive some help from the adults in their lives to do all this? Probably, but a savvy generation preparing to lead in a Capricorn world would know that taking a page from their elders is also important. A Jupiter-ruled Sagittarius generation wants to grow and thrive, so it’s natural that they would look to those with experience and insight for ideas and a launching pad: how they act upon those ideas is another story. They are far from being mere puppets for adults with anti-2nd Amendment ambitions.   

With Pluto in Sagittarius, “speaking truth to power” comes natural—as natural as assuming their own political power. “Vote them out!” was a constant theme in the chants and the speeches.

Importantly, with Jupiter as their generational ruler and Saturn directing their adult lives, these young people have a distinct sense of where the personal and the collective overlap. Saturn’s weighty rulership of time itself was dramatically demonstrated when student Emma Gonzalez stood silent on the stage for an achingly long pause. When she began speaking again, she noted

"Since the time that I came out here," she said, "it has been 6 minutes and 20 seconds. The shooter has ceased shooting and will soon abandon his rifle, blend in with the students as they escape and walk free for an hour before arrest."
In reminding people of the granular, Saturnian reality of 6 minutes and 20 seconds being all it took to kill 14 young people and 3 teachers, Gonzalez made sure viewers felt every one of them. Instead of hiding and nursing her own terrible wounds, she—visibly carrying the weight of her school’s tragedy—stood there for what seemed like endless minutes, and offered herself as a silent “screen” for everyone’s emotions. 

A powerfully moving moment in Emma Gonzalez's speech.

Needless to say, Gonzalez communicated with the Cosmic Archer’s precision and fire. The world got the message. 

As did the NRA, which issued an incredibly mean-spirited response:

“On Thursday evening, NRA TV posted a clip on its YouTube channel entitled ‘A march for their lies’ where the host addressed the Parkland students and said that if their friends hadn't died, ‘no one would know your names.’”
That kind of says it all, doesn’t it? 

Clearly, the #NeverAgain movement will have a long-term fight on its hands. My guess is that their generation will be identified with this mission of changing America’s gun culture over time, one election at a time. Just as protesting the Viet Nam war became a hallmark of the Boomer (Pluto in Leo) generation, and as fighting WWII marked the “Greatest” (Pluto in Cancer) generation. 

Which raises a uniquely Sagittarian quality to this struggle: Jupiter rules the natural 9th house of higher education, philosophy and ideology—all elements in the formation of culture, and hence, determining factors in this new movement. It’s no surprise that this drama is unfolding around the issue of school shootings, either: the 3rd-9th axis of an astrological chart reflects issues surrounding schools and education. 

The 3rd reflects local schools and the education received in the neighborhood environment and its extensions—i.e., the “village” (as in “it takes a village to raise a child”).  The 9th reflects distant (usually “higher”) education, but any education that positions young people to step into their leadership roles in the world can be considered “higher.” 

Today’s education happens not just in school buildings, of course, but via the internet, social media and other means of networking: in other words, the Gemini-Sagittarius axis supports the expansion of horizons beyond any brick-and-mortar restrictions. If the #NeverAgain teens seem older than their years, this is a big reason why. The odds of these media savvy kids being used as ventriloquists’ dummies for ambitious adults are very slim.
So, let’s consider the astrology of their generation against a chart for yesterday’s big event. The last post here also looked at the #NeverAgain movement, but the analysis was limited to the March 15th walkouts. Here, we’ll lend broader perspective to the discussion by adding the generational chart. To put things into historical perspective, the last time Pluto transited Sagittarius was from 12/1748-1/1762—a generation that would later be recognized as a seedbed of democracy here and abroad.

Biwheel #1: (inner wheel) Pluto ingress-Sagittarius, January 17, 1995, 1:28 a.m. ST, Washington, DC; (outer wheel) March for Our Lives, March 24, 2018, 7:05 a.m. (sunrise) DST, Washington, DC. Tropical Equal Houses, True Node.

Interchart T-Square: March Moon (Cancer) opposes March MC-Mars-Saturn (Capricorn); this axis squares March ASC-Sun (Aries). Gen Sag protestors may have put themselves at some risk yesterday on the streets of D.C., with this tense cardinal configuration, but the movement they founded in the process seems cosmically “blessed.” All planetary players involved in this t-square are dignified in one way or another: the Moon rules Cancer; Saturn rules Capricorn; Mars is exalted in Capricorn and the Sun is exalted in Aries. 

Strong emotion (Moon) welled up from the collective “soul” of this protest (Moon conjoins IC) to inform the March organizers’ aggressive plan of action and goals (Mars-Saturn), and the Sun dawned (sunrise chart) on a day filled with action, hope, and a fresh look at a tired, old gun violence issue (ASC-Sun in Aries). An astrologer may not have been asked to help plan the event timing, but the nice March Sun trine to their Gen Pluto (Sagittarius) is another indication that the Cosmos will powerfully facilitate the organizers’ goals, and that they are in the “right place at the right time.”
Indeed, that feeling of “rightness” was palpable—even though organizers did have to overcome many obstacles to be there. And, unless there was behind-the-scenes drama we didn’t hear about, everything seemed to unfold according to plan. This was encouraging, considering Mercury’s retrograde condition (also in Aries)—more to come on that.

It’s interesting that this March-day t-square spanned the generational chart’s 2/3-8 axis and squared the Sun-ASC falling over the generational 5th house. This suggests that the protest was both a statement of values (2nd), that it was a grassroots phenomenon (3rd), and that it had a social thrust and intent (5th). The resolution point for a t-square is always the point opposite the focal point (Sun-ASC), so this brings the generational 11th house to bear, the house where public influence finds expression. 

March Mercury Rx conjoins March Venus (Aries); March Venus conjoins March Uranus and this duo squares Gen Sag Neptune-Uranus-Sun (Capricorn) and March Pluto (Capricorn). If we’ve been wondering why this generation seems to be stepping up to the challenges of our Capricornian world so readily, we see it here: they were born into one of the most powerful Capricorn moments we’ve seen in our lifetimes, the Uranus-Neptune conjunction (exact in 2/1993). 

In fact, this Aries Uranus has been hovering square their generational Uranus-Neptune conjunction since at least 2016 (allowing a 5° orb), cultivating their revolutionary coming of age. Perhaps Trump’s election was a catalyst? That would be speculative right now, but their powerful Capricorn conjunction does fall opposite his natal Saturn-Venus (chart not shown), so there may be some basis for the idea. A story for another day.

The oldest Gen Sag individuals are now 23, but the entire generation numbers in the tens of millions in the U.S. (approx. 2 billion worldwide). Whatever revolution they decide to mount en masse will resonate by sheer force of numbers. During Saturday’s March—just the beginning of the movement, we’re assured—their aggressive message (Mercury) for change and action enjoyed Venus’s blessing, as well, in militant Aries.  

Mercury’s retrograde suggests a need to reflect deeply and to deploy their messages very carefully in this volatile world. Even so, disposed by a hard-edged Capricorn Mars, the Aries planets in this event chart are prepared for battle. Astrologer Gary Caton notes in the Mountain Astrologer that when Mercury retrogrades in fire signs, notable things tend to happen:

"For the next year, after occurring in the earth signs, Mercury retrogrades are happening in the fire signs. The last time Mercury’s retrograde moved from earth signs to fire signs occurred in late 2010 when Mohamed Bouazizi lit the spark for the Tunisian Revolution, a conflagration that quickly spread into a regional uprising throughout Northern Africa and the Middle East in what became known as the Arab Spring."

March Jupiter (Rx, Scorpio) inconjoins March Venus (Aries) and sextiles March Pluto (Capricorn)-Gen Sag Uranus-Neptune-Sun (Capricorn). As the ruler of their generational Pluto, Jupiter and Venus, March Jupiter’s role is important here. Its placement over the generational 1st house (Scorpio rises for Gen Sag) suggests a boost to their image in the world and a “coming out party” of sorts. 

The aspects March Jupiter forms here suggest that the young women (Venus) involved in the movement will experience some frustrations. It’s also possible that funding will become an issue, now that the March is over. A number of things could cause this, including general economic decline—a trend Trump seems to be courting with his tariffs regime. 

Given the importance of young women to the movement, any frustration or upset there could create some drama, but the nice sextiles we see here should open doors and empower the movement overall.  As Pluto continues to transit over their generational Capricorn stellium, they will be challenged to deploy their newfound power with integrity and right intention. They will be coming of age to vote and to run for office in a new wave for each year that passes, and they have a keen sense of the power that will give their cause. 

Even as they gain power, however, the NRA and other corporate powers-that-be will go to battle over any regulations (Capricorn) that come up for consideration, and they won’t care who is behind the bills. This issue will likely gain a lot of attention as Saturn (now in early Capricorn) continues its path over the Sag generation’s Capricorn points. 

As this unfolds, in fact, Pluto will be simultaneously transiting into its return position in the Sibly chart (27°+Capricorn). This suggests strongly that the #NeverAgain movement will play a role in resolving the dark passage we’re experiencing as a nation. By the time we emerge from this national Pluto return, Gen Sag should be represented in Congress and in all state legislatures…every year, a new wave. We will undoubtedly have more to say on this before Pluto’s return date in 2022. For now, let’s keep in mind that it’s “darkest before the dawn,” or so the saying goes. 

March Neptune (Pisces) conjoins Gen Sag Saturn (Pisces) and squares Gen Sag Jupiter-Venus (Sagittarius). This generation’s Neptune-infused Saturn rules their staunch Capricorn stellium, so they have an intuitive grasp of the games people play with information and ideas. This placement reflects their natural compassionate outlook as a generation: as we'll see below, they are deeply ethical, and this is partly because they are capable of feeling the pains and concerns of others. All of this makes them uniquely suited to be the visionaries for our time. They can think fluidly in both concrete, verbal (this Saturn also disposes their generational Aquarius Mercury) and inspirational, imagistic terms. 

We’re seeing a lot of dirty tricks spilling out of Neptune’s magic carpet bag these days, and while this generation is not immune to being deceived or deluded by conspiracy theories, Russian Twitter bots, etc., they are (as a collective) also equipped by their potent generational Jupiter (Sagittarius) to see through any distortions and twisted logic. This ability is supported by Venus’s nice conjunction to Jupiter in Sagittarius, which explains the observation above, that this cohort enjoys sharp intellectual abilities and a full grasp of ethical principles. They are fair-minded, willing to do their research, and prepared to fight for the principles underlying their mission, which is a beneficial mix for an activist generation. 

March Chiron (Pisces) opposes Gen Sag Chiron (Virgo) and sextiles Gen Sag Uranus-Sun (Capricorn). If we were looking at the March event chart on its own, it would be easier to see that Chiron (Pisces) is within a couple degrees of the event’s Aries ASC, so it’s not surprising that this event broadcasted the wounds of a generation for the entire world to see. Indeed, 900 protest events reportedly unfolded worldwide that day to support the #NeverAgain movement, and only a few happened to oppose it. 

That said, a generational Chiron-Chiron opposition suggests an important milestone, a transition point that can be both healing and wounding. It is a critical developmental passage, during which any woundedness is revealed for the motivating force it can be. Chiron expert Martin Lass says “We could liken it to the birth pangs of Spirit.”[1]
Indeed, fire-signed generations seem to attract such “trials by Fire”—existential crises, even—before taking on their power and place in the world: we Boomers (born with Pluto in Leo, came of age with Pluto in Virgo) weathered our storm with Viet Nam, and the Civil War generation (born into Pluto in Aries, came of age with Pluto in Taurus) certainly had its trial. To the Sagittarius generation that fought our American Revolution, Thomas Paine wrote,

“THESE are the times that try men's souls. The summer soldier and the sunshine patriot will, in this crisis, shrink from the service of their country; but he that stands by it now, deserves the love and thanks of man and woman. Tyranny, like hell, is not easily conquered; yet we have this consolation with us, that the harder the conflict, the more glorious the triumph. What we obtain too cheap, we esteem too lightly: it is dearness only that gives everything its value. Heaven knows how to put a proper price upon its goods; and it would be strange indeed if so celestial an article as FREEDOM should not be highly rated.”



Final thoughts

Today’s Gen Sag warriors are also looking for freedom, but their conception of that lofty birth right is freedom from the NRA’s weighty influence, and the freedom to live their lives without fear of gun violence. We know this revolution won’t succeed any more easily than any of our revolutions and mass movements have.  There are strong and worrisome radical right-ward trends that tell another side of this generation’s story, so as united as the Gen Sag kids seemed this past Saturday in Washington, D.C. and across the nation, the changes they’re seeking won’t be obtained “too cheap.” 

Complicating all that, we have a president in the White House who will hesitate at nothing to avoid taking responsibility for his own shortcomings, so we can’t be surprised if hostilities just happen to break out as a distraction: Trump seems bent on fanning the flames of war with his new hawkish appointees. Could the draft be re-instituted to channel all that youthful passion for change into military service and derail the protests? All of these tactics are written in the well-worn pages of the Machiavelli playbook—vigilance is needed. 

So, it’s fairly predictable that the cynical and the powerful will not make smooth the path ahead for Gen Sag, and their path is not likely to fly straight, like a Sagittarian arrow. Even so, we can hope that progress will be made, and that these idealistic young people won’t have to do all the heavy lifting!

We're in this together!

Raye Robertson is a practicing astrologer, writer and former educator. A graduate of the Faculty of Astrological Studies (U.K.), Raye focuses on mundane, collective-oriented astrology, with a particular interest in current affairs, culture and media, the astrology of generations, and public concerns such as education and health. Several of her articles on these topics have been featured in The Mountain Astrologer and other publications over the years.

Individual chart readings are available—for more information, contact Raye at:

© Raye Robertson 2018. All rights reserved. 

[1] Martin Lass, Musings of a Rogue Comet: Chiron, Planet of Healing, Galactic Publications, Nyack, NY, 2001, p. 304.

No comments:

Post a Comment