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Astrology with Christine Broadbent


Gaia Engaged, Invention Alive

It is the inventive outlook of airy Aquarius that features in 2009. Jupiter with a giant cast of six Aquarius movers and shakers ushers in the New Moon New Year on January 26.

A new Aquarian era of social change is coming. Gaea is engaged via Saturn’s passage through Virgo, green consciousness is alive and well. The earth is suffering and fix-it plans abound, along with worries, another Virgo trait. In January Jupiter tips the balance and Aquarius has the stage. With it, a ‘better’ plan, a bigger plan, a global network. The healing, visionary duo of Neptune and Chiron in Aquarius featured in 2008, leap to prominence in May, July and December 2009 as giant Jupiter joins them. Together they will pour the waters of humanity. Everything Aquarian is thrust into the foreground when Jupiter, Sun and Moon align with the destiny point, the planets of healing and far vision, all as a solar eclipse occurs on January 26. The year’s theme is born.

Gathering Together

This is not a year for the lone individual but for the group, the community, the family of humanity – a year to benefit from the spirit of invention and reform, to explore the field of possibilities. The eclipses are part of a series, which carry a gentle energy, which reshuffles group allegiances and supports positive outcomes. (1) Jupiter in Aquarius expands the Neptune, Chiron redemption theme and powerful eclipses drive it home. Human ingenuity and community spirit emerge as the means of redemption.

Full Moon in Leo On February 10 is an eclipse that evokes the dynamic polarity between individual needs and social needs. It occurs right after another polarising event – the opposition of planets Saturn and Uranus on February 5. This recalls the issues of November ’08 and turns up the pressure on the lunar climax.

The further gathering of Aquarius planets in the second half of February indicates ideas, inventions and solutions. Relationship planets Venus and Mars join in via harmonious connections with the party that is raging in the sign of the water bearer, which bravely explores big life issues. The easy link between Venus and Mars means that teamwork is facilitated and outcomes are well received. From February 22, Communicator Mercury reconnects with Jupiter and the year gets up and runs. It is like a powerful floodlight, revealing humanitarian concerns and new ideas that shake the old paradigm, is suddenly turned on. The consciousness party gets bigger.

Wild Times

Saturn and Uranus are the ‘rulers’ of Aquarius and the fact they oppose each other this year, while a party goes on in Aquarius, describes a wild side of 2009. “Do things big” leads the party - mass movements, mass walks, moratoriums, mass musical gatherings, meditation events, huge campaigns via the internet, trade aid events, ecological encounters, indigenous experiences for holidays, become normal features of the cultural landscape. Add in the likely occurrences of high flyers, both corporate and individuals, who fly too close to the sun and air waves buzz with news of the fallen.

A global party spirit will probably attract musicians and artists in abundance with a coming together of skills and aptitudes, when large collectives of people work for common goals. The air of invention will be a unifying one even though it is bound to create some social discord.

Aquarius high tech meets Virgo concerns: perhaps new technology for making green fertilisers from community recycling, or well designed community projects that are organised online. Eco travel that includes erecting and installing basic technology for a sustainable future satisfies both motifs. This trend could express itself in Australia within Aboriginal communities. (2)


Jupiter and Saturn are the timekeeper planets, ‘lord’ of the 12 year and 29 year cycles respectively. In 2009 Jupiter has its team to give it extra influence, but Saturn has a powerful sparring partner - Uranus. Saturn’s cycle being the longer, it is the more profound and every seven years reaches a check point – sometimes called “the seven year itch”. The timing of big life events, the serious commitments or crashes, are usually Saturn linked.

Yet Jupiter’s cycle defines enthusiasms, what drives our optimism, doors that open. Jupiter is more fun, especially in a year like this, when it engages with the destiny axis, the visionary dreams and healing themes emerging as a collective spirit.

In planet Earth terms there is no timekeeper like the Sun, our daily light - unless it’s that monthly timekeeper, the mysterious Moon. The eclipses focus solar and lunar energy from January 26 to February 10. Soul searching questions of human rights and the true meaning of community are highlighted by this cycle. Another lunar eclipse on July 7 and the total solar eclipse of July 22 move things along. This feeds into a Full Moon eclipsed on August 6, bringing a climactic confusion in its wake. A harder Saros cycle unfolds, in which systems may fail. This implies August more easily lends itself to frustration and violence.(1) This means 2009 picks up critical mass in February and even more in August. These are times to stay aware and most of stay grounded.

Saturn: Designed by Virgo

Enter planet Saturn, the master of mass, of the material facts. Jupiter in Aquarius can inflate the ego with its huge team and airy ideas this year, so strong cords are needed to tie it to the ground. To create system and structure that can accommodate those new ideas. To redesign failed principles and make things work - to serve. This is the realm of Virgo and the earthy practicalities that could save our skin. Talk of “saving the planet” belies the fact that if imbalance goes far enough Gaea saves Earth, by closing down on us.

Saturn represents the limitations placed upon us, both voluntary and involuntary. It has been in transit through Virgo since September 2007, the time in which businesses and households have been repeatedly reminded of the need for restraint, with the roll-on from the ‘sub-prime’ mortgage collapse. The effects of reckless borrowing and refinancing practises, of mounting credit card debt, are a task worthy of Virgo ingenuity. Virgo is sometimes caricatured as the super accountant or manic organiser, of the zodiac signs. We can expect more rigorous forms of accounting process, new taxes, revised mandatory business practices and interest rates, as hard realities are elevated into public policy. The underlying impetus for Virgo is how to make it work, how to solve problems, how to create the systems that do so.

Management for sustainability and healing endangered systems – these are all classically Virgoan concerns. Saturn in Virgo is also likely to encourage the compiling of a body of evidence, careful analysis, new systems installed. Designed by Virgo has some problematic sides too. Like an over-abundance of all the above and the practicality that can override vision. Sometimes problem solving can completely ignore sensitive and humane issues.

Redesigned by Uranus

Enter Uranus in Pisces – the opposition that had to happen. In February and September ’09 it happens – again. All signs need their opposites to be whole, because the opposite is the shadow, the mirror self. Pisces/Virgo share the theme of service - Pisces serves the holistic spiritual vision, while Virgo serves the material world. When it comes to the sensitive issues and compassionate vision that Virgo may ignore, Pisces is on to it. A good blend of earth and water creates a fruitful yield. The pulls and tugs between deep moral issues and status quo systems, which stretch through into May 2010, can also have a fruitful yield.

Since Uranus is master of turbulence and the unexpected, Uranian surprises will often be behind the common purpose that helps community spirit flourish this year. Opposite each other, these two polarise opinions and present backlash from past mistakes. Organisations of like- minded people, spanning the globe via that Aquarian institution the worldwide web, will have reason to search for answers on an unprecedented scale. The Virgo design of order, answers and practicality may be subject to many revisions, when washed by the erratic currents of Pisces.

Virgo is an earthy sign whose energy most strongly challenges Pisces, Gemini and Sagittarius. In 2009 Saturn plays hard taskmaster through accounting and accountability in business, taxation and social policies linked to health and safety considerations and via new costs linked to that great Virgo project – the greening and cleaning of planet earth. Where Virgo is careful, Pisces likes to gamble. Uranus in Pisces could show up as bad gambles with what appears to be careful methods of financial management, like superannuation funds. Gambling on the share market is a gamble indeed, when Saturn opposes Uranus. Increasingly the best gamble will be companies and commodities that are green enough.

Venus Miracles in March

On March 6 Venus begins her rare ‘retrograde’ cycle And woe betide people and projects that rush things. Venus has been co-opted as a marketing symbol – who can resist this prime feminine light, the morning and evening star? She has recently been the Morning Star, pre-dawn and will start to move back towards the Sun and into invisibility for a while. Certain opportunities exist now and it is wise to work with this six week cycle. Revision and review of plans, refreshing yourself with regenerating time out, renewing and reassessing finances, even redecorating on a small scale, helps Venus ‘retro’ to show her sweetest face.

Venus is a composite symbol of matter and spirit – seeking a balance of these delivers the best results. From March 6 to April 17, going within heals – it is the line of least resistance. It regenerates relationships and self esteem. This is no time to push or dwell on faults. Those born under the signs of Aries, Taurus, Libra, Cancer and Capricorn take particular note. A rash of relationship disruption, for individuals and nations, could infect early April. By April 12 Venus has slipped back into Pisces, evoking compassion and empathy for the plight of others, and tension eases. April 17 begins a ten day window to ease tension and strife. Spontaneous combustion is coming back down the track April 27 to May 3 when she re-enters Aries, joins Mars the warrior and squares off to Pluto - again. ‘Retro’ means that early February and early April, were practise times. So acting on impulse can be dangerous in late April and early May - tensions building since February could erupt. Look for the little miracles, the satisfying projects, the way that options appear, the deep questions asked - these cool the fire.

A Current Is Born in May

A current is born when two planets first conjoin and in late May ’09 Jupiter meets up with Neptune. This occurs about every 13 years. Together in Aquarius they represent a rediscovery of enthusiasm, a collective sensitivity to the air of invention. Again in July and late December, this visionary pair link energies and stir the imagination. Sometimes the hopes and dreams discussed will seem idealistic – they are sourced on a notion of human kindness, they search for the deeper meaning of conscience. Jupiter and Neptune’s dance prompts us to march to a different drumbeat. This time it also helps identify fixed attitudes that wound, since Chiron the healer turns this visionary duo into a trio. Chiron is a captured ice comet, with a fifty year cycle, which represents our capacity to recognise the healer and shaman within. The Aquarius theme was up and running early, with that fateful New Moon on January 26 and it moves to a new, more compassionate level in late May

Celebrations in June

Stimulating communication, any kind of gathering that is a cultural melange with plenty of interaction, future visions shared, street parties, travel expo’s, special world music events are likely to make June a fast-paced satisfying month as the energies of Gemini and Aquarius blend. The extra touch comes June 6 to 22, when Venus in Taurus votes for kindness, this time in easy intimacy with Mars and Pluto, deepening earth consciousness.

Fund raising events will expand upon the theme of cultural diversity like never before. The profits and losses attitude to Earth’s bounty may also be a war against cultural diversity. Cultural traditions are seriously impaired when the land on which they depend is compromised or simply stolen. With loss of land, often goes a loss of culture. Yet, respect for diversity, for freedom of belief and freedom of lifestyle and an empathy for ‘outsiders’, is all part of the Aquarius profile. Gemini spreads the word and together they create a moving time – parties with attitude.

Healing Hopes for July/August

Early July brings a lunar eclipse and the second meeting of Jupiter with Neptune, reinventing the visionary energy and enthusiasm of February. Again hopes are high but July 22’s New Moon begins the strongest, most difficult eclipse cycle and illuminates the issues at the climactic August 6 Full Moon, with no holds barred. The Full Moon gathers the energy of Jupiter, Chiron and Neptune - the super team, all in ‘retro’ motion. Behind the scenes is where things happen, where research, reinvention and healing realignment can take place. For this challenging time to have a healing motif, it is a matter of being still enough to hear that message and rested enough to move quickly when necessary.

Money Matters

Expect some wild rides if your money supply is too dependent on credit rates or easy finance. Personal egotistic interests and exclusive elites will be most open to danger and exposure in this ‘tell all’ year, with its occasional chaotic changes. Dreams and visions of splendour could get in the way of common sense. ‘Hubris’ was the name for that moment when the mere mortal assumed he/she had the power of the gods. In Greek myth the gods summarily punished that mortal severely. Corporate reversals and the extreme fall from grace associated with hubris will feature in the business landscape and financial markets. This will be apparent in February and early March, early April and early May. August will be a stand out month when problems are acknowledged and new rules and regulations drafted.

September’s Spotlight

September promptly winds things back for review as Saturn/Uranus feed feuds again and Mercury goes ‘retro’ jumping right into Saturn’s cautious camp, meeting Sun in Virgo. This is not a month to finalise but to clarify, to analyse. Uncertainty is extended into early October by the ‘retro’ cycle. This could have a perilous backwash for the politics of water, waterways and water conservation. Global treaties or bureaucratic decisions on the national level may be at odds with common wisdom. Delays in negotiations and finalisation of plans are likely. Around October 8 to13, Venus and Mars move things along. September –early October brings things to a head:

  • Any civil protest now could meet with an overly harsh response.
  • Any new disease profile that has evolved since late 2008 will explode into public attention.
  • Alternative medicine will gain more positive media attention as well as being watched very carefully for swindles.
  • Pisces style, worrying questions will bubble to the surface via internet campaigns or high profile forums. Likely concerns:
  • Concerns about the hundreds of dead zones in the world's oceans - so oxygen depleted nothing survives in them. Questions asked about the role agricultural fertilisers play in this problem.
  • Assumptions will be challenged on every level. For example, the perception of plastic as a stable medium has been contradicted by its toxic instability as waste, in the ocean and waterways, its capacity to enter the food chain. Toxic and genetic implications of this issue surface in September/October.
  • Courtesy of Uranus, healthy waterways move into the really urgent category - the need for organic fertilisers for the earth, to sustain healthy waterways may become a political issue.
  • Class action cases against industrial pollution will multiply once Saturn enters Libra for two years in late October.
  • Australian questions regard internal waterways - dead zones include the Gippsland Lakes and Tuggerah Lakes, as candidates for concern. Not to mention the heavily polluted and radically diminished Murray-Darling River Basin that has gone into federal control with Saturn in Virgo.
  • Land reform and water conservation, both figure as a prime focus for new legislation drafted now.

Australia - Virgo in Charge

It is timely and interesting that Australians elected for a change of government and a Virgo PM, with Saturn transiting Virgo. Kevin Rudd’s moves to join the Kyoto Protocol as a first act of the new government, suggests a strong Virgo menu of legislation and new systems to follow. Addressing the violent face of loss of land, poverty and unemployment in Aboriginal communities, will call on both the compassion and inspiration of Pisces as well as Virgo resourcefulness, service and respect for grass roots issues. Again a big menu of financial and logistical systems will follow this. Both are examples of Saturn in Virgo: striving to make a difference in pragmatic ways.

Saturn’s demanding energy will certainly be running the show when Kevin Rudd experiences it crossing his Sun and Mars in late September 2009, with Uranus opposed. Issues to do with protecting marine life and land management will be part of the stress he must deal with. Born September 21, 1957 he was elected to office during his once in 50 years, Chiron Return. This means PM Rudd has a foot in the Aquarian camp as well. Chiron in Aquarius is part of his life lesson and major achievements, a ‘T square’ to the destiny point, as well as being the wound that heals. All of this adds up to a man who pushes himself hard, with good results. It also suggests an effective year in which the PM hopefully protects his energy and health as well as his country’s future.

A Shift in October

A shift occurs in mid October when Jupiter moves into direct motion and the social imagination responds accordingly. Supported by Air sign harmonies between Libra and Aquarius the dream of true community resurfaces.
A sea change in the nature of travel and tourism has been occurring. Jupiter rules travel and in Aquarius, supports travel for learning, for business and to pursue humanitarian concerns. Aquarius is also a sign that serves the corporate world well with its sensitivity to group dynamics. The principle of practical changes to be better world citizens, will take a stronger hold in more corporations. The Virgo bottom line that penalties apply will play a strong part here.

Intentions, opinions and social beliefs are powerful currency in 2009, especially in October. Healing intentions that include a personal, social, political and ecological focus become more standard fare.

Technology Incentives

Technology is all about Gaea right now: The earth herself, the impact human occupation is having on her and the widespread incidence of suffering and starvation. The earthy goal of making a difference and solving practical problems is the focus while Saturn is in Virgo, but the Aquarian team pick up the challenge. Unusual inventions that depend on an attitude shift will be making news:

Virgo recycles, so scientific research to convert waste products into new fuels, gains more financial support. Renewable energy research becomes more financially viable as carbon costs are applied, methodically and quietly.

Alternative technologies like solar power, wind power, tidal power and geothermal power continue to lift their profile in 2009. Harnessing the energy of the wind has a particularly rosy future as Jupiter, then Saturn, transit Air signs. Solar power will leave its teething problems behind in 2011.

Poor communities in countries like Africa will become the focus of alternative energy experiments and the results will feed back into wealthier nations as a means of sustaining fragile and damaged environments.

1947and1982 Wake Up in November 2009

On November 16, 2009 Saturn ‘squares’ Pluto, a particular motif that dates back to 1982 and has links to 1947/48, both times that Saturn conjoined Pluto. The earlier linkup of ‘47/’48 in the proud sign of Leo, saw many national identities forged. To name a few: Pakistan, India, Israel and Burmese independence. The birth of a new identity gives a nation a new birth chart and these contain a disturbing Saturn/Pluto imprint shared by all ‘born’ in those fateful years. The Indo–Pakistan wars, the Israel-Pakistan wars, the military dictatorship in Burma/Myanmar, illustrate the ruthless dynamic these nations wrestle.

A Pluto/Saturn combo stamps a meeting with the urge for power and control and from mid November 2009 to late July 2010 Saturn and Pluto square off. A crisis or internal conflict is likely to visit these nations, a chance for change - at a cost. Likewise the Falkland Islands and Sinai were in crisis and change in 1982 - the last time that Saturn joined Pluto, so they too are sensitive to the pressure of the ‘square’.

Libra Mixes Things Up

On October 30, 2009 Saturn enters Libra, taking on grace, balance and peaceful diplomacy as ideals worth striving for. Social justice, challenges to the status quo and social issues in general become the talk of the time. Saturn has an ‘exalted’ energy in this ‘cardinal’ Air sign, where it is able to take charge and play the iron fist in the velvet glove. This means that legal formalities, negotiations and new global structures promoting justice, peace and reconciliation will take shape over the next two years.

As so often happens, the story begins with a struggle: on November 5: Saturn, litigious and clever in Libra, ‘squares’ Pluto who is disturbing the status quo in Capricorn. When these two square off, unconscious urges and security drives clash. The shadow - the disowned, less civilised sides of humanity are up and jumping. This is the story of the interface of individual ideals with corporate power, the interface of social change with global controls, the interface of local politics and larger power blocks, of national and global interests.

Nuclear power as a so called “clean alternative” may resurface strongly and seem an ‘easy’ solution. Likewise the prospect of Australia as a dumping ground for nuclear waste. The real environmental costs and the world security challenge it represents, will also be championed - debate and conflict ensue.

Pluto is in Capricorn for many years now and the depths that are being plumbed are the deep earth. This is in keeping with Pluto’s mythic story of a god who rules the underworld and only rarely comes above ground. Pluto peeps out as dark secrets revealed, power struggles behind the scenes, sudden loss of standing or ruthless manipulations to build wealth. Pluto in Capricorn on the one hand draws up the spectre of an over managed world and on the other the means of transforming it. This story becomes more volatile through 2010 to 2012.

Saturn represents existing structures and now these have a Libran design. We move from the nuts and bolts of management Virgo style, to the people issues, to global relationships and alliances, to Libran diplomacy, to intellectual ideals. Yet the opposition to Uranus and the square with Pluto continues into 2010, so none of these will be easily achieved. Since the final inspiring meeting of Jupiter and Neptune occurs in late December and New Year starts with a Full Moon and lunar eclipse, we end 2009 on high hopes.

Christopher Fry wrote these words in 1932 when Saturn was opposite Pluto, and again they have substance: The thunder is the thunder of the flood, the flow, the upstart spring. Thank god our time is now when wrong comes up to meet us everywhere. Never to leave us, no, not til we take the largest stride of soul folk ever took.” (3)


1. Bernadette Brady Predictive Astrology: The Eagle and the Lark, p.324-5. The Saros cycles describe families of eclipses that span hundreds of years and carry the energy of the first eclipse in the series.

2. The Weekend Australian, August 11-12, 2007, pg 27. This explores the way in which tourism will expand into aboriginal communities under the new Queensland legislation.

3. Christopher Fry, A Sleep of Prisoners. This passage comes from a poem often quoted by Jean Houston in her transformational workshops.