Here on the first day of 2010, let’s talk about a major event on the horizon.

First, here’s a little background on transits. I was taught to first look at the outer planet (slower-moving) transits and cycles in order to get an overview. Later we look at the inner planet cycles and transits. This made so much sense to me, given my background in Tarot, where you look at the general layout first and then specific suits and cards second.

General principles:
1. A broad overview of the longer-lasting transits and conditions. Remember that the slower moving planets are generational. Everyone of a certain age is experiencing similar influences.
2. Refinements on that view with what the inner planet transits say to us. With a good understanding of the big stuff, we can zoom in on the individual aspects of a person’s chart. You can suddenly see how that Saturn return for instance, is playing out for you based on where your Moon is.

This year Saturn, Pluto and Uranus (all big generational planets) form a “T-Square” in which the three planets form a triangle. The last two times we’ve seen this sort of grouping — 1930s and 1960s — were significant for the cultural and social changes that occurred. The 30s, of course, had the Great Depression and the 60s saw a shift in our cultural mores. What an interesting time to be alive, eh?

First, let’s think about what each of those planets represent in astrology — Saturn, Pluto and Uranus.

Saturn is associated with limitation, restriction, boundaries. It rules career, authority and conforming social structures. It concerns duty, discipline and responsibility.

Pluto — “the great renewer” —  destroys in order to renew. By bringing buried needs and desires up to the surface and giving them a voice, Pluto renews, even at the expense of the existing order.

Uranus represents the principles of  individuality, new and unconventional ideas and discovery. Uranus is also the planet of sudden and unexpected changes. Radical ideas and people, as well as revolutionary events all find their influence in Uranus.

These three planets, and what they represent, offer a vision of turmoil that ultimately gives birth to a new way of thinking and being. Saturn is all about authority; Uranus, the individual and Pluto, rebirth. It’s not hard to imagine a scenario or two to describe what the next few years will bring. With these planets, the T-Square influence was felt last year (as the planets moved into alignment) and will probably be felt for a few years after 2010.

The T-Square is a hard aspect. That means that the bodies — in this case the three planets — form a 90 degree angle to each other. Generally in hard aspects the planets have to talk out their differences. This could manifest as a national-level discourse, like a political debate, or it could happen more as a groundswell where individuals and groups of individuals are “talking” to society through protests. Emotions and ideals will be heightened and the process (thanks Pluto) of uncovering repressed thoughts and feelings will only add fuel to the fire. As with any outpouring of emotion, it’s in the aftermath that we can start to make sense of it all and build new ways of talking and understanding.

As you can see, this is a huge deal. This conjunction of Saturn, Pluto and Uranus will tear down old, out-dated ways of thinking about government, society and religion. What comes in to replace them is up to us. It is not hard to imagine that rigid systems that control and oppress could arise. After all, turmoil is frightening and frightened people tend to want a strong leader. It’s our work to help calm people and ease them through this time, so that what replaces the old systems is better for everyone. Freedom, love, understanding…. what a world it will be.