Mars shines red, rising after twilight in the East. It’s observable all night, with a spectacular showing before dawn in the Western skies. Venus now returns to our evening skies in the West after traveling with the Sun and Mercury for some time. Strikingly, as Venus in Sagittarius sets Mars in Gemini rises, for Venus and Mars are at opposition on November 30th, with Jupiter in the late degrees of Pisces shimmering above.
Mercury and Venus opposing Mars lead us into December. Mars is still retrograde and closer to the Earth than normal, taking us into the deeper realms of what it is we are really wanting. With the retrograde motion, now is the time to clarify, redefine, and refine our goals and intentions. Can we take the time to investigate the deeper impulses, and needs, and come to clearly defined intentions so that when Mars goes direct on January 12th our forward motion takes us into manifesting our goals? This is, of course, one of the first steps in creating our businesses, our daily life, and interactions, to have a clear sense of our values (Venus) and what it is we want to take action on (Mars). Our actions and intentions can build the structure (Saturn) which we intend to grow (Jupiter).
With Mars retrograding through the sign of communication, we may have an opportunity to redo difficult communications or actions that have taken place since October 30th.
From expansive Sagittarius to the practical goals of Capricorn, December brings a shift of energy. Mercury enters Capricorn on the 6th, Venus enters Capricorn on the 9th, and the Sun enters Capricorn on the 21st, the Winter Solstice. Highlighting the shift into Capricorn, as in counterpoint, Jupiter once again enters Aries on the 20th, suggesting a balance between new beginnings (Aries) and wise use of skills and resources (Capricorn) to grow (Jupiter and the Sun). The Moon enters Capricorn forming the New Moon on the 23rd, placing an emphasis on practical, thought-out steps for future implementation.
Celestial Events for December
Dec – Mars is still retrograding in Gemini, until January 12th, going direct at 8 Gemini – With it retrograde we slow and reflect. Especially with Mars retrograde in Gemini, we bring inquiry into our review. We look over the past four months and see what has been unfolding. We ask ourselves, is my intention the same? Am I following through? Where do I need to revise? Can I become more focused on one or two things that I want to follow through on rather than 10 things? What have I learned over the last four months? Where could I have communicated more successfully? How have I been using my words, creatively, reactively, skillfully?
We want to support ourselves with a slower pace, knowing that delays or postponement might arrive. We can use this time to deepen our insight into our goals, aligning ourselves with more reflective insight into both motivation and desired outcomes, so when Mars goes direct on January 12, we are naturally enriched with clarity in the New Year. (For more information on what’s ahead in 2023 join Susan for her yearly Astrology talk, “Crossing the Great Divide”)
Dec 6 – Mercury enters Capricorn – our thinking becomes more grounded and practical. We are benefited by clearly defined goals.
Full Moon December 7th
Dec 7 – Full Moon at 16 Gemini conjuncts Mars retrograde, Sun at 16 Sagittarius – Each full Moon brings us to an awareness of the great mystery in which we live, a world full of metaphor and mirroring, as within so without, as above so below. The night of darkness holds the immensity of this cosmos of stars, and our changing reflecting sister moon, pulling the tides and affecting our feelings and consciousness.
We honor and participate with this Gemini full Moon by taking time to open to our curiosity, to bring inquiry into the deepest part of our psyche, by reflecting on the choices we have made and will make, how we integrate our dualities into harmony and gifts. Under the Gemini Moon powers of communication are heightened for better or worse. There is also a lightness and playfulness as this is the sign of the child and that endless curiosity of discovering the world in which we live.
Next to this full Moon will be Mars shining orange red, bringing heat and passion to our feelings and communications. As we observe this time with the full Moon and Mars affecting each other, especially as Mars is retrograde opposite the Sun, we may be more able to review and revise, to release regrets, to shine a light on our deepest needs and motivations. Under the sign of duality, the masculine and the feminine may merge in new ways. Mars may bring heat to our emotions so we have the opportunity to observe our irritations, our reactions, our frustrations with more consciousness, an opportunity to choose to respond in new ways.
Affirmation for full Moon in Gemini
“May I find clarity of thought and word in defining the actions to take in creating my life.”
“May we find ways to come together and bridge our differences to create healing and a sustainable world “.
Dec 9 – Venus enters Capricorn – We center in on practical and sustainable values to support us through the winter. We reflect on what we are committed to and what we value pursuing.
Dec 12 – The Sun in Sagittarius sextiles Saturn in Aquarius – an excellent time to focus our attention on organizing, planning, and giving structure to our endeavors. As Saturn also represents what needs to be cut away, and the perseverance to do it, now is a good time for clearing and cleaning.
Dec 14 – The Sun squares Neptune – this is a day to imagine, be creative, dream, and wander by the sea, to stoke and replenish our spiritual connections.
Dec 17 – Mercury trines Uranus – brilliancy, discovery, revelation and breakthrough. Use this day for contemplation, writing, and study, creative planning. Our thoughts are freed up into new dimensions of perception.
Dec 20 – Jupiter re-enters Aries, until May 16 when it enters Taurus – Jupiter leaves watery Pisces and the deep ponderances of the psyche, and takes us back into energetic and active Aries. It jumpstarts us into new beginnings and adds fiery enthusiasm to what it touches. Be bold and go for it.
From expansive idealistic Sagittarius to practical Capricorn scaling the heights
Dec 21 – the Winter Solstice, Sun enters Capricorn – The ancients knew Capricorn to be the most sacred of the signs, with the light returning amidst the darkness, so apt the symbol of the Mergoat, from the deepest seas to the highest heights of the mountain tops.
This Solstice carries both hope for growth and new beginnings, (the Sun in exact aspect to Jupiter in Aries) as well with the Moon in Sagittarius opposite Mars retrograde in Gemini, a fierceness in taking a stand, a fiery warrior. It amplifies competition and powerful discussions, conflicts, debates around belief systems and philosophies, with the potential for innovative and creative resolutions (trine Chiron in Aries).
Dec 22 – Venus in Capricorn trines Uranus in Taurus – this holds the potential for breaking through to values that are life sustaining. Closeness in relationship are to be balanced with freedom and independence.
New Moon in Capricorn
Dec 23 – New Moon at 1 Capricorn – at 2:17 am PST, celebrate on the 22nd. Under this New Moon we ground our intentions for the New Year. We can ask ourselves, “How might we bring more light into our lives, our communities, our relationships?” We might ponder our life purpose, both reviewing the past year and seeing into the future with our intention. Our inheritance is to be creators and healers. So with this gathering of planets in Capricorn, we can ask ourselves, “What are we committed to?,” and we can embrace the Aries energy (Jupiter in Aries) its courage and pioneering actions, to steer us into new beginnings as 2022 ends and 2023 begins. With Uranus in Taurus, still conjunct the north node, we continue to stretch ourselves into new possibilities and creative endeavors, supporting our evolution into more conscious beings. Watch for continual efforts to rebel, revolutionize, and breakthrough constrictions, censorship, and limitations.
Affirmation for the New Moon in Capricorn
“May I ground and center myself in what I hope to achieve, be state of mind, or creative manifestation of attaining my goals. “
Dec 29 – Mercury goes retrograde at 24 Capricorn, until January 18th, when it goes direct at 8 Capricorn – using this retrograde for deeper review and refinement, in order to manifest our intentions. Be thoughtful of changing plans and schedules as the trickster Mercury keeps us alert with sudden shifts and changes. Mars goes direct on January 12th, so after the 18th, we feel a surge of forward movement.
Dec 29 – Mercury retrograde conjuncts Venus at 24 Capricorn – A time to review our values and relationships. We can bring more awareness and thoughtfulness to our communications.
Dec 31 – Venus conjuncts Pluto at 27 Capricorn – as the turn of the year leads us into 2023, we might contemplate the myth of Innana, she who willingly goes into the hidden and ignored underworld to meet her sister the Queen of the Underworld, eventually, by her willingness to surrender and acknowledge what has been ignored, forgotten, and repressed, she effects a healing. We might explore the deeper motives and patterns we exhibit in relationship and allow transformation to take place.
The Twelve signs for December: Sun and Rising Signs
Aries (Mar 20-Apr 19): Dear Aries, under this full Moon on the 7th, your communication with others may carry more emotional sensitivity, especially in communications with siblings, neighbors, or friends. It is an opportunity to become objective to your needs and feelings. With Mars, your ruling planet, next to the Moon and retrograde, it is advised to revisit those needs and make choices in how you communicate, and then, to ask directly for what it is you are needing. As the Sun is moving through the area of your chart that expands your understanding and growth in awareness, now is the time for studying, learning, and teaching. At the Winter Solstice on the 21st, the energy shifts for you, as the Sun enters Capricorn and highlights your house of achievement. With Jupiter once again entering Aries on the 20th, you are supported in new beginnings and steady progress to what you desire to achieve. The New Moon of the 23rd in Capricorn highlights the Capricorn theme of planning and attuning to what is meaningful for you to pursue. This is an excellent time to plan your goals for the upcoming year, especially in your work and in what you most aspire to. Keywords, “Time to imagine and plan.”
Taurus (Apr 20-May 20): Dear Taurus, with the Sun in Sagittarius, you continue the theme of releasing and letting go. The full Moon illuminates your house of what you most deeply value, self worth, and your relation to finances. Under the light of this winter full Moon you can affirm what it is you most deeply value as you release what is not necessary. Create a ritual for abundance and ease with your finances, and review what is working, or not working, in that area of your life. As the planets enter Capricorn, Mercury on the 6th, and Venus, your planet, on the 9th, then the Sun on the 21st, there is a shift of focus. You can feel more supported in moving forward with less baggage. This is a wonderful time for studying, learning, writing, teaching. You may plan your teaching curriculum for the year ahead with success. With Jupiter re-entering Aries on the 20th you are busy behind the scenes thinking up and imagining new adventures, or ways to teach. The New Moon on the 23rd gathers the Capricorn energy and focuses you in a time of expanding your knowledge and being open to inspiration, perhaps even seeing things in a new way. Keywords, “Enjoyment in releasing, studying, and creating.”
Gemini (May 21-Jun 20): Dear Gemini, under this Gemini full Moon your emotions are stirred, as it is a time of feeling more deeply. You find a balance under the full Moon to attend to yourself as well as caring for others. With Mars retrograde conjunct this Gemini Moon, slow down to review what it is you most desire to focus on. What are you most wanting or needing during this time? Then create a plan as your planet, Mercury, moves into Capricorn on the 6th. When the planets gather in Capricorn, letting go and releasing is highlighted. You may feel pulled to share with others, even offer your wisdom, but first be sure and give it to yourself. This is a turning point time for you with the Sun entering Capricorn on the 21st and the New Moon on the 23rd. You might ask yourself, “How do I want to nurture my relationships? What behaviors can I let go of and what will I share?” Keywords, “Balance receiving and giving.”
Cancer (Jun 21–Jul 21): Dear Cancer, this full Moon in Gemini lights up your house of spirituality and imagination. Retreat and dream, connect deeply with the cosmos. Inspiration and insight want to be received, then balanced and grounded in practical ways. As the planets enter Capricorn from the 6th to the 23rd your house of relationship is highlighted. It’s an excellent time to reach out to others with your wisdom. As well as a time to receive mentorship and guidance from others. On the 20th Jupiter enters Aries once more, and activates energy to create new beginnings in your professional life. The full Moon on the 23rd is an opportune time to set your intention for new relationships and intentions around collaborations. Keywords, “Retreat and Reconnect, walk in the woods.”
Leo (Jul 22 – Aug 22): Dear Leo, gather around you those you love. Send them a message as this full Moon lights up your house of friendship. Under this communicative Gemini Moon give words to your appreciation. Under this Moon, imagine the community you would like to be a part of, or that you are grateful for, and affirm your intention. With the planets gathering in Capricorn, rearrange your work space and re-attune to your well being. Plan a routine to take good care of your body. With Jupiter re-entering Aries on the 20th you will find inspiration in new things you learn or teach. The Aries influence activates your enthusiasm. Under the new Moon on the 23rd honor your body with mediation or yoga, and write out an affirmation for ease and well-being. Keywords, “Love and appreciation.”
Virgo (Aug 23-Sep 22): Dear Virgo, this full Moon lights up your house of career and what you wish to achieve. With Mars retrograde next to the Moon, this is a great time to intentionally review what it is you want to achieve, or what action to take in your career. Your planet, Mercury, enters Capricorn on the 6th creating a wonderful time to ground and plan. With your Virgo attentiveness, it may be fun to draw a vision board, or dream a bit on what is next for you. As the planets gather in Capricorn they support your creative endeavors and projects. It may be a good time to plan a larger project, with attention to gathering the things you need. Jupiter re-enters Aries on the 20th, encouraging you to jump into something new, even to collaborate with another, as someone may be wanting to support you. The New Moon in Capricorn graces your house of the heart, which opens to creativity, self expression, love, and children. Let yourself play and enjoy! Keywords, “Let enjoyment be the key for December.”
Libra (Sep 23-Oct 22): Dear Libra, this Gemini full Moon illuminates your house of learning, teaching, sharing, expanding your consciousness and point of view. Affirm your intentions to grow yourself through these endeavors. The Sagittarius Sun helps you to spread the word. As the planets begin to gather in Capricorn you feel the energy shifting, helping you to plan the best ways to implement what you have been learning. On the 9th, Venus, your planet, enters your house of the deep self, your home, and domestic life. As the planets gather in Capricorn especially on the 21st, and with the new Moon on the 23rd, you tend to your inner life, to deep reflection on what you want to grow over the next period of time. You nurture your well-being with a feeling of grounding and centering. With Jupiter re-entering Aries on the 20th, you feel a supported in new beginnings, making action and outreach easier to initiate. Keywords, “Centering, grounding, and aspiring.”
Scorpio (Oct 23-Nov 21): Dear Scorpio, As this full Moon lights up the area in your chart that brings out your perceptiveness, you are tuned in and sensitive to others, their needs, and their challenges. With Mars retrograding next to the Moon, you review this area of your life, and how you can take better care of your own needs. You are passing through a transformative time, as you let go and allow renewal. The Sun in Sagittarius highlights your talents and your exquisite uniqueness. Affirm your ability to transform and be surprised at what comes your way as you allow yourself to receive. As the planets gather in Capricorn, especially between the Winter Solstice and the new Moon on the 23rd, create a plan to network and share information on what you are doing. Or, if it is your way, take time to write and share your thoughts. With Jupiter entering Aries on the 20th, it energizes your momentum to start a new routine for your self care. Keywords, “Honoring your uniqueness.”
Sagittarius (Nov 22-Dec 20): Dear Sagittarius, Happy Birthday! Celebrate yourself and have some fun with the one you love, or your favorite friend. With the full Moon in your house of relationship, in roaming Gemini, take a long walk together. With Mars retrograding next to the Moon, share your thoughts on what your intentions are for the year ahead, or even, your longer term goals. There’s sweetness in sharing. With your planet, Jupiter, soon to re-enter Aries on the 20th, be ready for that blast of positive energy highlighting your house of creativity, play, and expression of your heart. Under the gathering of planets in Capricorn, especially at the Solstice and the new Moon of the 23rd, know it is the right time to attune to what you value, then plan for the year ahead. With the Capricorn planets in your house of money, review your finances with a practical eye. What would you like to grow and focus on for the year ahead? Set your intention under the powers of the New Moon. Keywords, “Vision and practical planning.”
Capricorn (Dec 21- Jan 19): Dear Capricorn, under this Gemini full Moon you bring order to your working space. You review your intentions for work, health, and day to day routine. You focus on fine tuning what you want to implement in terms of your working life and self care. Starting on the 6th, when Mercury enters your house of Self, then Venus on the 9th, you can use the powers of communication (Mercury) and harmonious inviting outreach (Venus) to call in what you need. The Winter Solstice is a special time for you, because you were born in the darkest time of year when the light returns and begins to grow. It blesses you with the ability to bring enlightened consciousness into your awareness and marks this a special life of growth and wisdom for you. Be sure and give yourself time to reflect and then initiate a Solstice, full Moon ritual to amplify and ground your intentions for the year ahead. 2023 carries some significant changes that can bring more ease in manifesting your desires. Keywords, “Appreciate who you are.”
Aquarius (Jan 20-Feb 17): Dear Aquarius, this full Moon in Gemini is kin to your Aquarian soul, falling in your house of creativity and self expression. And even more, this is the area of the heart, sharing love, and play, so enjoy yourself under the Winter’s full Moon. Take up your creative tools, be they pen, brush, or potter’s wheel, an instrument, or the dance floor. Soon Saturn will leave your sign (in Aquarius since 2020) and a new era will begin for you. With Jupiter re-entering Aries and your house of communication, writing, and sharing of information, you are energized to begin new studies, to teach, and to share your stories. As the planets begin to gather in Capricorn and especially at the Winter Solstice, allow yourself to retreat and go inward, rein in your busy mind and attune to the stars, to the night sky. Feel yourself a part of a great intelligent creative mystery that holds you in healing and guidance. Feel the divine in nature and its voice of beauty. This feeds and nurtures your soul under the light of this Capricorn new Moon on the 23rd, when clarity within affirms your course into the New Year. Keywords, “Attuning to the Star within and without.”
Pisces (Feb 18-Mar 19): Dear Pisces, this Gemini full Moon lights up the area of your chart that represents your home and your deep self. Often there is much energy moving in your home with many faces and needs and activity. If that is not the case, then your mind is full of its creative thoughts, ideas, and ruminations. When you look out upon this full Moon in the chilly night know it blesses your home, yourself and family. And, under its light find a way to nurture yourself, giving yourself time to find that wellspring of quiet that refreshes your ever giving spirit. On the 20th, Jupiter re-enters Aries, encouraging you to find some time away to follow your desires. As the planets gather in Capricorn your planning for the holidays intensifies, but with this Capricorn energy you can pace it and ask for some help. With Mars retrograding through your house of home it’s helpful to let go of things you no longer need. It lightens up the your mind and heart. Keywords, “Receive blessings under the full Moon.”
Susan Heinz is a professional astrologer in Santa Cruz for 40 years, bringing together traditional & esoteric astrology, Tarot and Qabalah. For info on her Friday monthly astrology groups, her Qabalah, astrology and/or painting classes, and for personal readings, call (831) 479-3751, or go to www.susanheinz.co