This time last year I suggested that 2015 was not going to be a repeat of 2014 exactly but since the Uranus-Pluto effect was still as strong as ever we were in something of a holding pattern, both in an individual sense and in terms of global developments. Uranus and Pluto continue to remain at a 90° angle to each other throughout 2016, but they are now well over half-way through the signs of Aries and Capricorn. There will be new targets for their transformational and revolutionary powers.
The two-year cycle of total lunar eclipses on the Libra-Aries axis ended in late September, 2015, so although there will be eclipses during 2016, a significant cycle has ended. (And if you are a faithful follower of my columns and articles you know how much store I set by eclipses when it comes to major life events.) Throughout 2014 and 2015 many of my clients were dealing with the aftermath of events that had occurred in and around the October of 2013; and now, for almost all of them, the effects of those initial events have been absorbed: a new chapter has begun. With the exception of late March's lunar eclipse and that of mid-August, the eclipses of 2016 fall on the Pisces-Virgo axis - signs which are already in the front line of transits by Saturn, Jupiter and Neptune.
It promises to be a year full of diversity.
IN MY ON-LINE OVERVIEW I TALK about 2016 being a year of endings. Numerology and astrology may not have a huge amount in common but the character of a year as defined by its number appears to have a certain relevance. 2016 adds up to nine, which resonates with Mars and the signs of Aries and Scorpio. This therefore should be a year of regeneration, transformation and conflict - a year of extremes. Rather more important, a year Nine completes a cycle which is why 2016 also resonates with the theme of endings.
The last Nine year fell in 2007 - a year which marked the end of the era of prosperity and the beginning of the global economic crash. The descent began on 9 August, 2007 when BNP Parisbas withdrew from three hedge funds that specialized in US mortgage debt. A year later on 15 September Lehman Brothers were allowed to collapse, and the rest, as they say is history.
I shall be closely watching developments in the September-October of 2016 for signs of controlled panic in economic circles. Clearly, not every Nine year brings financial melt-downs, but because the lessons of the last crisis appear not to have been learned we have set ourselves up for another. Practices that brought down banking institutions in 2008 have not changed - there are still too few degrees of separation between high risk investment banking and consumer banking - and since national debts, most notably in the US, continue to rise, the climate is rife for yet another global economic crash, one that could be even bigger than that of 2007/8. And while this theory may take until 2019/20 to fully manifest, should we be following the path of the previous cycle, 2017 could be the year our greatest fears regarding the economy come to pass.
WE ARE CERTAINLY BEGINNING 2016 in suitably conflict-ridden style. As I started to put together this newsletter, Saudi Arabia executed 47 "terrorists" including the Shia religious leader, Sheikh Nimr al-Nimr. In consequence diplomatic ties were severed between Saudi Arabia and Iran with the Sunni-ruled Bahrain following suit a couple of days later. Iran has condemned the executions - its supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei maintaining that politicians in the Sunni kingdom would face "divine retribution".
Saudi Arabia’s actions have thrown into the shredder all hopes for any kind of diplomatic progress in the conflicts in Syria and Yemen.
Saturn, Neptune, Uranus and Pluto all have their astrological signatures on these developments, and with Mercury turning retrograde on 5 January, we can expect no speedy solution to this impasse.