Welcome to 2018: Navigating the Year Ahead
The planets are presenting us with several predominant themes this year. If we are able to recognize these themes, we can take advantage of them and bring success and happiness to many areas of our lives!
Charting the Year Ahead
Let’s take a look at what the planets have in store for us over the next 12 months by looking at the birth chart of 2018. As most of you know, our individual astrological birth chart is determined by our ascendant—the constellation (or sign) that is rising on the Eastern horizon at the moment of our birth. The ascendant becomes our “first house”, which determines who we are—it relates to our physical body (the vessel that carries our soul) as well as our overall personality and the way we address the situations that arise throughout our life.
The same holds true for each new year, which is born at the stroke of midnight on the morning of January 1st. By a quirk of our solar system, the constellation Virgo is the sign that is always rising on the Eastern horizon when the New Year is rung in. That means that 2018 has Virgo as its ascendant—Virgo is 2018’s first house.
Start the Year by Seeking Perfection Within
The fact that Virgo is 2018’s ascendant tells us that a major theme of the coming year has to do with perfection. Virgo is the sign that wants and demands perfection in all things. We should approach this theme with our eyes wide open, because if we don’t focus on perfecting things in our own lives, we will try to perfect the actions and attitudes of others. In other words, we could become critical, nosey busybodies. So, in 2018 we would be well-advised to look inward and concentrate on perfecting important aspects of ourselves, such as: developing a healthier physical exercise routine; a healthier dietary regime; sounder work habits; more open and honest communication skills when dealing with friends and family; and building deeper spiritual practices, preferably ones that include reflective prayer, meditation and yoga. Seeking perfection in ourselves will help us take advantage of the possibilities offered through the energy in 2018’s alignment of planets—and there will be plenty of positive energy going around.
Auspicious Alignments in 2018
One of the biggest boons that arise from a Virgo ascendant is that Virgo is ruled by Mercury, creating a Yoga Karaka effect because it rules two auspicious houses. In fact, Yoga Karaka translates as “giver of good”. It can greatly increase our ability to realize and manifest our dreams and goals.
Without getting too technical, a planet is considered a Yoga Karaka when it represents a Trine (an angle of 120°) and a Kendra (an angle of 90°). A planet is Yoga Karaka when it represents the Trine (1st, 5th and 9th houses) and a Kendra (1st, 4th, 7th and 10th houses) at the same time. The Trine suggests all these features are working in harmony and the Kendra provides strength and stability. This year, Mercury is ruling over a Trine: Virgo in the 1st house (in which our soul’s purpose is expressed through our physical body) as well a Kendra: Gemini in the 10th house (representing our career, purpose and heights of accomplishment). This combination gives the capacity to achieve our desired goals.
If that wasn’t spectacular enough, the cherry on the top is a full Moon in Gemini in the 10th house, relating to our professional lives while aspecting the Sun in Sagittarius in the 4th house, which relates to our private lives. And really, who doesn’t like the full Moon? A full Moon suggests the fulfillment of our ideas: its light is radiating at its maximum, reflecting the light of the Sun—and the light of the Sun expresses the fullest and purest intentions of our heart and soul. It is a most powerful combination—Moon (our mind) is working in concert and in perfect harmony with Sun (our soul) to express and manifest our deepest heartfelt wishes.
And there is more good news in the 2018 chart! The 11th house (indicating success and the potential of finding the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow) is ruled by the Moon sitting in the sign Gemini in the 10th house. The Moon in Gemini in the 10th tells us that our creative ideas have no bounds and can be freely put to use in realizing our goals. This doubly confirms that we can make enormous gains by properly directing our imagination, creativity, originality and resourcefulness.
Now . . . where should we direct all that creative energy? Well, the placement of Mercury tells us where we should concentrate our focus, and this year Mercury is in the 3rd house of creativity--younger siblings, courage, communications and short trips. The 3rd house is an “Upachaya” house, which means that even if we are facing extremely challenging problems in these areas of our lives, those challenges can be overcome and all problems resolved with enough time, patience and fortitude. For example, a writer suffering from writer’s block will eventually have a major breakthrough if they continue working diligently and not give into despair. Simply put, if we remain focused, dedicated and put in the hard work, we will definitely experience great success!
Remember, Mercury in the 3rd is aspecting the 9th house, and the 9th house is one of the most important features in our chart, second only to our ascendant. It relates to our luck and our good fortune. In 2018, it reveals our potential to ease (or completely melt away) past burdens, hardships and struggles—but only if we allow ourselves to grow closer to our intuition by tuning into the Divine within us.
The Key to Success in 2018 in a Nutshell
The full Moon in the 10th (relating to our career) is aspecting our Sun in the 4th house (relating to our home). The 4th house relates to the joy we derive from a secure and loving home base, for example the love we give and receive from our mother. It relates to our overall happiness, including the health of our heart—both physically and emotionally. It relates to our fixed assets, like our car, land and property.
This year, as well as the Sun, the 4th house is jam-packed with other planets, including Saturn, Venus and Pluto. Being bombarded by so many planets at once creates what we call “a tornado effect”. Properly harnessing the power of this swirling mass of 4th-house energy by channeling it productively is critical if we hope to enjoy all the professional and personal success that is ours to be had in 2018—including financial gain, emotional security, a stable home and work environment and a deep sense of inner calm. So, it is important to not let anything disturb our peace of mind and heart, and to put down a strong anchor in the 4th house.
We cannot escape the tornado effect—we may be surrounded by chaos in our immediate surroundings or enveloped in tumultuous world events this year. But we cannot allow our emotions or our thoughts to be sucked up into this whirling vortex—we cannot be scattered or impulsive, but must remain focused on what is most important in our work, our home life and in our hearts. It is within our power to transcend negative influences and use the vast “tornado” energy at our disposal to transcend our environment and go deep within to find true success.
Please remember, because the Sun in the 4th is the ruler of Leo placed in the 12th house (the house of loss or enlightenment), our inner happiness depends upon our perception of events and the choices we make. So, let’s view the proverbial glass as being half full, not half empty; let’s embrace freedom instead of loss, let’s choose hope over despair.
Use the same principle of calm, focused and mindful reflection to deal with any potential tornado effects in the following houses, which are closely tied to 4th house-energy:
The 5th house, relating to: Children, sex and romance, affection, planning/programming, learning, teaching and doing mantras
The 6th house, relating to: Vitality, the immune system, health, short-term financial and long-term karmic debts
The 2nd house, relating to: Immediate surroundings, including coworkers and neighbours, material assets and treasured personal possessions.
The 9th house, relating to: Higher perception, mentors, teachers, Gurus, pilgrimages, long voyages, morality, the search for truth and higher learning.
The 12th house, relating to: Expenses, investments and returns; loss/liberation, foreign contacts and enlightenment.
To completely enjoy and take advantage of our full Moon, it is imperative that we anchor down the 4th house—we must keep our feet firmly planted on the ground so we can tap into the energy of the tornado and not be blown away by it. As in any year, but especially in 2018, we must not make emotional decisions based on illusory perceptions or self-aggrandizement. It’s best to remain centered in your heart to ensure you rise above the storm, embrace the light of the Sun and Moon, and enrich your life with the limitless planetary energy that is being unleashed. If you prepare yourself by getting your emotions in check and make wise, thoughtful choices, you will weather the storm and emerge happier, healthier ands more secure emotionally and financially.
Have a great 2018!
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