Mask of God or Heralds of the New Age?
The significance of the present conjunction
(Preliminary note:) There are various ways in which this conjunction may
be approached and by which its meaning may be explored. You can investigate
its historical forerunners, i.e. the contexts of previous conjunctions.
You can view outstanding individuals born at that particular time as well.
On the other hand, adhering to classical astrological methods meams to
observe and combine the traditional analogies of the planets and signs
Historical forerunners (previous Uranus-Neptune constellations)
Due to its closeness to the present time and because it was the two planets' first linking since the great Aquarius conjunction (of all classical planets) in February 1962, the sextile of 1966-68 (Uranus in Virgo, Neptune in Scorpio) is of particular significance and interest: Those were the times of the Middle Eastern Six Day War, of the Chinese Cultural revolution and the Vietnam War. In Europe they had that political "springtime" in Prague (an attempt to liberalize orthodox Communism) and student rebellions in France and Germany, in Great Britain there were the Beatles. In the United States racial conflicts occurred, resulting in the Civic Rights movement (Martin Luther King); not to forget the anti-Vietnam and Hippy movement.
The conjunctions of Uranus and Neptune take place every 171 years - regularly twice in the same sign. So the next two conjunctions (around 2164 and 2336) will occur in the sign of Aquarius. Since the current conjunction is the first after we "discovered" Neptune, the planet's weight and influence this time is stronger, the conjunction's expected effects altogether being of much more importance than formerly.
Some personalities born during the previous conjunction
Despite the selective choice, these persons may be validly seen as typical or significant representatives of their time, some of them being of outstanding importance for the era following - so to speak "bearers" of the Uranus-Neptune quality... The persons listed can be characterized as pretty far-sighted (by no means narrow-minded), as pioneers with trail-blazing discoveries and visions going far beyond the horizon of their contemporaries.
The Analogies of Uranus, Neptune and Capricorn
(Some words about the proceedings:) The method used in dealing with the planets and the sign of the conjunction is an analytical, differentiating one, trying to give more clarity and structure to the subject. Various levels and areas of the symbols' effectiveness will be investigated. Their meaning will particularly be discussed regarding individual/ psychological respects on one side, and collective or mundane matters on the other - i.e. in relation to the fourth and tenth houses or to the lower and upper quadrants. (Of course, you could also refer to other phases, e.g. the seventh, containing thinking and relationships, or the second house, i.e. existential, social and legal security. However, the fourth and tenth house have priority, they deserve our main attention, the vertical axis being the most important.) The slow moving planets are of a collective character anyway, i.e. their impact and influence are connected closely with contemporary events. And with the sign Capricorn involved the conjunction additionally is related predominantly to political and social affairs.
The structural proceedings chosen are intended mainly to exclude that widespread tendency among astrologers to jump too quickly to interpretative conclusions. But it is also helpful to present an overall view and synthesis of the subjects discussed. By way of illustrating many facettes, with the support of manifold associations the constellation's whole 'picture' will be illumined thoroughly. (By this kind of encircling a question the answer psychologically becomes more complete and 'round', its symbolic and mythological contents getting more clear and conscious.) Unfortunately, with this method it is impossible to absolutely avoid overlapping and repetition. But our way of investigation is much more compatible with the true essence of astrology than those scientific, positivist or statistical approaches to the phenomenon - astrology being some sort of non-linear ("illogical", "ana-logical" or dream-like) world view, in which "magically" all things are interwoven with each other, "everything is connected with everything else"...
All world events taking place at the time of a planet's astronomical discovery give us hints to its meaning. Those things happening synchronically enable us to draw important conclusions as to the symbol's contents. From parallel events we can infer some quite relevant statements on the effect or nature of the planet in question. In fact, by studying history we learn a lot about the specific energies bound up with Uranus and Neptune.
At the time of Uranus' discovery (1781) for the first time a colony (i.e. the USA) was fighting for its independence from the mother country. As a result of the French Revolution and the founding of the United States the ideas of European Enlightenment achieved a political breakthrough, universal human rights receiving their first constitutional form. The familiar quotation "liberty, equality and fraternity" can be directly related to Uranus. Moreover, many new technical innovations and pioneering discoveries furthering the Industrial Revolution (like steampowered engines, spinning machines and mechanical weaving looms) followed.
The abstract meaning of Uranus (as it is also traditionally derived from Aquarius and the eleventh house) may be described as "that which is unexpected", "extraordinary" or "sudden". Uranus symbolizes a break from the old, the shaking up of seemingly solid and established matters. It is "thunder and lightning", a release of tension, an explosion. Uranus may lead you "going off the rails", it interrupts continuity and developments, removing every one-sidedness and centredness, liberating from deadlocked, fixed or dependent states. The archetype of Uranus stands for the principles of change, uncertainty and questioning.
Individually-psychologically Uranus is driving you towards
independence, freedom from restraint or from being possessed. The wish
for self-determination might generate allergic reactions against being
pressurized or patronized, even rebellion against authority. Uranus instinctively
causes opposition to every kind of persistence or to stick-in-the-mud.
There is something very individual and special about those persons with
a stressed Uranus: you can't press them into stereotypes! They are constantly
surprising, so to say, their adventurousness being ready to take any risk.
Politically-mundanely Uranus stands for some restructuring
of society, for reforms, renewal and progress; it`s the future, the modern
and the unconventional. Metaphysically it is re flected in social utopias,
ideas of the people's sovereignity. It means freedom, emancipation, humanism,
in other words democratization. Uranus symbolizes standing up against
oppression ("tyrants"), it is anti-authoritarianism, opposition
to authorities like state or church. Socially, Uranus is represented by
the youth, by your friends and allies, all the like-minded - inviting
you to form cliques or interest groups (e.g. trade unions). We may also
see it in internationalism and cosmopolitanism.
At the time of Neptune's discovery (1846) nationalism and the 'bourgeoisie'
(a new social class) were awakening. In Europe
Abstractly, the principle of Neptune (of Pisces, the twelfth house, the last phase of astrology's development cycle) symbolizes dissolution - dissolution of what has come into existence at the "entrance gate" of the Ascendant, what has been filled with life by the Sun (and so on). Neptune represents the ultimate reality, the limitless realm of all potentials and possibilities - where all those archetypes are gathered and "slumbering" in formless latency, "breeding the germs" of new forms of life and existence... Neptune symbolizes the otherworldly and transcendent, the invisible, "meta-"physical or nonmanifest, that which to us is inexplicable, incomprehensible, mysterious and incalculable (nirvana!). It operates subtly and secretely ("by chance"), i.e. in a seemingly chaotic or archaic way.
On the psychological plane Neptune is quite dazzling, ambiguous,
i.e. difficult to understand or grasp. In fact, Neptune may be everything,
but it is definitely irrational: this includes dreams, hopes and longings,
fantasies and wishes (that may never be fulfilled), distortions like falling
in love, being in trance, ecstasy, in a magical world of wonders. Neptune
encompasses vagueness, unclarity about yourself, an ill-defined identity,
(potentially) the alienation from your own being. Its unreal character
often leads to desillusionment, to harsh and bitter disappointments, painfully
denying things to yourself. Neptune represents the (collective) unconsciousness,
all that is suppressed - every once in a while our consciousness being
flooded with those unintegrated, undigested contents. It can produce a
paralysis of your will or ability to act. At any rate there is some weakness,
confusion of the mind and lack of orientation. It causes a loss of certainty
(mentally or physically): nothing seems to function properly any more.
Sometimes this is coupled with intoxication, narcotisation or addiction.
With Neptune you may slide into a crisis or an illness, into a hole of
emptiness. Especially at the times of a transit that feeling of "yawning
chasms" is not unusual - Neptune by no means being as gentle as often
described in the literature! On the contrary, it may give rise to great
fear and dread (due to a disregard of fate's warnings)...
Mundanely, Neptune traditionally is linked to the health system,
to illnesses (especially to cancer, cf. Doebereiner). It is assigned to
hospitals, sanatoriums, to social care and welfare, to humanitarianism
in general. House twelve encompasses the marginal groups, the poor and
needy, the outcasts and misfits (society's "enemies"). It signifies
poverty stricken areas, social crises, desolation and destitution, hunger,
nuisance, altogether so-called Third World.
Abstractly, these two planets represent a combination of the astrological cycle's last two phases. They embody transpersonal, non-subjective truths, so to speak the highest, non-material reality, our "share of the heavens" (as Doebereiner has put it). On the material and psychological level Uranus-Neptune may bring forth a "shock of suppressed truth", i.e. quite a portion of confusion and turbulence. We may imagine this planetary combination as the "waves of the subconscious being whipped up by some heavy storm". The constellation can be pictured as both centrifugal and centripetal, kind of a "fateful whisk" stirring or whirling up all that exists - thus forcing us to find a new level (within), a new centre of consciousness.
Individually-psychologically Uranus-Neptune means, especially
at the times of a transit, that we are losing our reference points to
the external world. Every firm grip is vanishing, the ego is afraid of
being overwhelmed or even destroyed. The individual soul fears the unknown
and threatening; you may be caught in a state of panic and despair, reacting
with fright, bewilderment and helplessness. Typical is that "merry-go-round
effect": the faster this thing is turning (in the shape of outside
events), the more urgent the necessity becomes to return to your true
inner centre! With Uranus-Neptune you are thrown back on yourself, on
your inherent power and strength. All those illnesses which occur, those
breakdowns, that acting out and destructivity actually are only on the
surface [according to Humanistic Psychology they are reactions to your
inner nature's previous suppression]. - Quite on the contrary, survival
crises and radical change of events are setting free an enormous amount
of productive energies. A new creativity is enabling us to handle exactly
those incoming subconscious energies and to master the chaotic external
situation. Basically, Uranus-Neptune has to do with inner growth, the
transformation of the self, overcoming the ego - thus approaching your
true identity, your essential, inner-most being (which is identical with
your fate and destiny).
Mundanely, Uranus-Neptune generally symbolizes precipitous,
flood-like, sweeping events going beyond the previously conceived or imagined.
Meteorologically, we expect bad weathers, even catastrophes like landslides
or earthquakes. Uranus and Neptune are turning things upside down (which
often have been built up so carefully), bringing about a radical change
in circumstances, turning them inside out. However, with Neptune usually
the cause of such revolutionary events remains blurred, veiled and unclear!
Spiritually each Uranus-Neptune conjunction marked a further
step in mankind's development of consciousness. Each may be seen as a
new stage in spiritual growth, particularly in realizing that God is to
be found ("incarnated") both within ourselves and in nature.
CAPRICORN (or Saturn, the MC)
can abstractly be defined as structure, form, framework or that which is forming and restricting. The tenth phase represents objective laws and general rules. By this cosmical principle every excessive growth is cut down to size, all maldevelopments are being corrected - which is hurting particularly those subjective and vital elements of fourth and fifth phase (i.e. Cancer-Moon and Leo-Sun). In house ten we localize the important and meaningful, moreover, the individual's task and destiny (dharma!). Standing at the gate of ultimate reality (i.e. fourth quadrant), "gatekeeper" Capricorn lets only the genuine and valid pass through - timeless truth being its guideline or standard of measurement. Saturn symbolizes the order or co-ordination of time and space. Its essence is to be found at the junction ("crossing") of time's quantitative and qualitative aspects.
Psychologically Capricorn means acquired habits, it is the Freudian
instance of control and censorship - but some kind of higher consciousness
and awareness as well, i.e. our inner voice and authority. It represents
a tendency of discipline or suppression, mainly to regulate (unwanted)
sudden impulses (our feelings, needs and weaknesses). The danger of phase
ten is to be separated from your inner wishes, in severely educating ("punishing")
yourself and thus becoming emotionally harsh and stiff, consequently generating
barriers, inhibitions and complexes within your soul. With Saturn restrictions,
hardening and denying tendencies may seem to be necessary. Tensions, stress,
burdens and privation may make life hard to bear, leading to oppressive
narrowness and fear. In fact, all those demands upon you, those assumed
duties, particularly those achievements aspired to really take their time.
They require endurance, perseverance and patience, which means to proceed
slowly ("step by step"). With Capricorn and Saturn crucial tests
(of long duration and great difficulty) require quite an amount of work
and effort. However, such abilities usually are at the disposal of a true
Mundanely phase ten symbolizes politics in general, it is the state, law and order - and their keepers: the police and civil servants. Capricorn is embodied in the lawmakers (legislative), i.e. Congress; in a certain sense it`s the government directing the state, the President as setting the guidelines of politics. Saturn and Capricorn particularly stand for the traditions handed down. In phase ten we find the moral codex (mandatory rules and prohibitions), social norms and conventions, manners and customs.
URANUS in CAPRICORN (or in tenth house, Uranus-Saturn)
on the abstract level is a barrier breaker, some fragile, ever changing form. Figuratively, this constellation may be translated as "crumbling or toppling aged walls". It is some kind of a "whistle in the ears" or "deafening crash" (the ears being under Saturn in astromedicine). Generally, here the new rubs against the old, the progressive and revolutionary stands against the conservative and preserving, freedom is colliding with necessity. With Uranus-Saturn stability, security and order are under attack; there is a lot of tension, "pulling and grinding"...
Psychologically, Uranus in Capricorn means a questioning of
patterns of thought or action. Especially in transit the combination Uranus-Saturn
indicates necessary changes of your life's framework - i.e. regarding
your vocation, existential basis and relationships. It may mean quite
an incisive turn, a call for re-orientation and readjustment. The constellation's
aim is you to discover and develop new (i.e. your individual!) standards
or guidelines. According to Doebereiner in a birth chart this constellation
signifies the existence of incompatible elements within your soul. It
indicates some fundamental ontradiction of form and content, of the inner
and the outer. These strong dissonances either lead to a semblance of
harmony, portraying the problems given in glossy and aesthetic colours,
which actually means being stuck or fixed in the false and inconsistent...
Politically-socially Uranus in Capricorn announces some tense, explosive, "crackling" situation. It means unrest, up-heaval and renewal. In a more narrow sense it is accidents, breaking the law, bomb threats and (attempted) assassinations. With this constellation we expect a shake up of the state's structures - both domestically and internationally. However, (in a compensatory movement) at the same time there will be cramped and pacifying graspings at antiquated maxims and strategies - which in the meantime are hollow, i.e. lost their meaning.
NEPTUNE in CAPRICORN (or in house ten, Neptune-Saturn)
abstractly can be defined as some (Neptunian) "dissolving
of (Saturnian) borders". With Saturn being the stronger participant,
it may also mean an excluding of the transcendent, i.e. "building
dams" against the mystic and occult. We can view Neptune's stay in
Capricorn as another attempt of those fantastic and heavenly realms to
incarnate into material, worldly form. Yet, in most cases, the result
is some kind of "island-building"...
Psychologically Neptune in Capricorn indicates the danger of
losing control and security - your "car's lever slipping out of gear",
so to speak. Especially in transit that solid ground under your feet might
vanish, conscious behavior or volitional acts becoming impossible. With
Saturn-Neptune the attempt to master the subconscious does not promise
success; at least this proves to be quite a laborious task - like building
a house on a marshy site. More probable is psychological inflation, i.e.
being swamped by the unconscious, or a syndrome of misjudging reality,
combined with carelessness in everyday life. Regarding this constellation,
Doebereiner tells us about some "necessity to separate the worlds":
we are forced to distinguish ordinary reality from the world beyond. The
worst problem is that some kind of a social "island" might seem
necessary to us (to live our dreams)...
Socially Neptune in Capricorn means political confusion and crises, some danger of chaos, anarchy, lawlessness, the decay of law and order. It stands for some disintegration of the old structural order, sweeping away barriers by social mass movements (cf. the Fall of the Berlin Wall, 11/9/1989, 18h57m CET). Saturn-Neptune symbolizes a general (creeping) decline and loss of morality, i.e. corruption, scandals, intrigues and demagogy, people being fed up with those "dirty politics". The rate of criminality is rising, the Mafia ("state's enemy") becoming more powerful. We also notice an increase in unemployment, in working without paying state taxes, in drug problems and epidemies (like aids). Saturn-Neptune generally means all social outsiders, eccentrics. It is symbolical of other forms of living, i.e. alternative scenes and subcultures (having withdrawn into existing niches). The constellation corresponds to all those who are not participating in social welfare, and it is linked to the charities and social institutions supporting the disadvantaged. Another effect of the constellation is the exclusion and expelling of foreigners as undesirables... Superficially, Saturn-Neptune requires more socially-oriented governments and politics. On a deeper level, however, this combination of astrological symbols is about recognizing mankind's highest values and true ideals - that is, not to give up our fundamental hopes, moreover, to attempt some integration of social utopias into political reality. (Note: at the time of Martin Luther King's "dream" Saturn was in Pisces.)
URANUS-NEPTUNE in CAPRICORN
Abstractly, this constellation unites all symbols or phases of (mundane) fourth quadrant (called "causa finalis" by the German astrologer Doebereiner). In quadrant four we find a chart's owner's ultimate (final) goal, his life's direction and true significance. Here we recognize a person's or process's mission or destiny, all which is going beyond the individual or subjective. Here those cosmic, transpersonal energies can be seen at work that we are unable to manipulate - quite on the contrary, they determine us! The fourth quadrant contains three different types of fate, so to say; its corresponding planets acting as "fate's regulators" upon the phases and planets of the other quadrants. Those essentially spiritual planets Neptune, Uranus and Saturn come into effect when our body, soul or mind does not develop according to (our higher self's) plan, when we are no longer in harmony with (our inner) cosmic law... Basically, the combination of Uranus, Neptune and Capricorn announces and requires some fundamental change of direction - in all areas of life.
Psychologically, this constellation stands for the self (in
the sense of Jung or Maslow), i.e. the personality's hidden centre. The
fourth quadrant deals with individuation; it aims at some broadening of
our consciousness, integrating new or previously unconscious parts of
the inner world - thus attaining a more profound self-consciousness. To
the individual the last three astrological phases or cosmic principles
may appear quite dangerous. They are threatening, questioning and shattering
your material, emotional and social stability, which means your "old
boat" of "I" consciousness "pitching and tossing",
finally being forced to diverge from the course designed. Externally,
this could mean some people cracking up (psychosis, hysteria)... However,
from the fourth quadrant's (the self's or heaven's) point of view all
those dramatic processes and awful things taking place are only superficially
destructive. It is a psychodynamic law that all first-time manifestations
of new dimensions of the subconscious behave rather violently and aggressively
- but their true essence is neither bad nor negative! Maturity or adulthood
entails the separation from that which we are used to, i.e. leaving behind
old (outworn) patterns and complexes. At a certain point in the process
of growing up it becomes necessary to destroy some of our basic projections
and ego structures, to untie and free ourselves from those outdated concepts
Mundanely this constellation indicates serious social and political
problems. There could be an economic breakdown (stock market crash, inflation),
social insurance and taxation system being overstrained. There might be
earthquakes, nature's elements (e.g. winds and waters) being out of control.
All this may provoke some necessity of crisis management, as the old recipes
and solutions are failing... The whole world seems to turn topsy-turvy;
we notice "storms" and "floods" also figuratively,
on the political and social plane - with some threat of the "weirs
breaking". The majority of people is feeling dissatisfied with the
conditions existing (whereas most of them were happy only a couple years
ago). Caused by a growth of the individuals' self-consciousness people
become recalcitrant; there are protests and turmoil, strikes paralysing
public life. The law is not obeyed any more, people just do what they
want, they seem to turn crazy: like in a chaotic civil war everyone might
fight everyone else (look at former Yugoslavia). Both on a large and on
a small scale the component parts progressively split apart from the whole,
wishing to be independent - quite analogous with the disease process of
cancer. With Uranus-Neptune in Capricorn previously suppressed classes
or social groups are becoming more self-conscious. The former unity and
harmony, that which bound society together, those former feelings of solidarity
and community seem to get dissolved or lost - the result being some sort
of separatism, i.e. to leave the existing social and political union (which
step by step is divided into lots). Traditional ruling structures and
power blocks are brought down; by way of revolutionary movements the outdated
social privileges (of the 'bourgeoisie') disappear...
In spiritual respect this constellation expects us to leave
behind naked materialism or pure rationalism (i.e. one without a soul
or spirit). Our culture has to proceed to some new mystical or holistic
philosophy, that type of understanding of "everything being connected
with everything else". With Uranus-Neptune in Capricorn a new sense
of sharing is about to rise, a new spirit of brotherhood and love. In
theosophical terms this could mean the manifestation of the Cosmical Christ
or - as the Gospel keeps on saying - Christianity's consummation by way
of sending ("pouring out") the Holy Ghost. The transcendental
or heavenly realms (of fourth quadrant) wish to take form in this material
world - maybe disguised as social utopia. The "Light" or Logos
wants to be conceived in Mother Earth's (Gaia`s) "womb". This
century's most striking conjunction may be heralding the New Age, that
flowing of some higher, "divine" consciousness into the various
areas of earthly existence (i.e. into ordinary work, science, technology,
economy, communications, culture and politics). Naturally, the transitional
period of such a basic change never takes place without strong frictions,
enormous problems ("birth pains"). Likewise the messages from
Findhorn tell us that the "old world" must pass before the new
really can emerge. One of the main concerns of Uranus-Neptune is us to
leave behind the traditional view of God, e.g. no longer to be attached
to those sentimental, childish, simplifying (and false) concepts of the
"good God" or "sweet baby Jesus". Of course for the
first, second and third quadrant (i.e. our body/ ego, soul/ emotions and
mind) it is nearly impossible to grasp the fullness of Uranus, Neptune
and Capricorn. But in the long run those archetypes of the last quadrant
(the "gods") will not allow us to misinterpret or misunderstand
them. Our greatest difficulty is that on the surface their power and glory
often seem so horrible, demonic or catastrophic...
Basically the conjunction discussed is effective from 1991 to 1995.
Crucial developments, especially from the collective point of view, are
taking place every year in the months of April/ May and September/ October
- when Uranus and Neptune are stationary.
(originally written in 1992)