December 2019 Insights


December Astrological Events[1]

Dec 12 Full Moon (0:11:43 EST)

Dec 4-Dec 14 Saturn & Venus converging in Sagittarius

Dec 15 Venus enters Capricorn

Dec 16 Sun enters Sagittarius joining four other planets

Dec 25 Mercury enters Sagittarius, and Mars enters Scorpio

Dec 26 New Moon, Solar Eclipse: Visible in Southeast Asia

Dec 27 Sun & Jupiter conjunction (combust)

Dec 30 Sun and Ketu in exact conjunction


November (with the benefit of hindsight)


In last month’s Insights, I mentioned that the period between 11/10 – 11/21 would be influenced by the mutual sign exchange of Mars and Venus. Specifically, the expectation was for fiery, passionate behaviors, emotional manipulations, and possible communication misunderstandings. In the chart of the United States, this combination took place with Venus (a planet of diplomacy and politics) in the 12th house (foreign places), and Mars (arguments & disagreements) in the 11th house (groups, & the public). Interestingly, although the inquiry into President Trump’s impeachment was already underway, this particular period corresponded (to the day) with televised broadcasts of the House Intelligence Committee hearings. The hearings were chock-full of passionate rhetoric and fiery emotional reactions from spirited political spokesmen and cable news commentators attempting to shape (manipulate) broader public opinion. The political inquiry continues, but the intensity of that period was noticeably heightened. It was interesting to note that the testimony focused on the actions of the U.S Government and the manner in which it attempted to influence (aka manipulate) the activities of a foreign government (12th house – foreign places).


The second expectation was that the ending of the Mars/Saturn combination in early November, along with Jupiter entering its own sign of Sagittarius, might bring signs of diminishment in violent street-protests, especially in South America, Hong Kong, and the Middle East. At this stage, clarifying an amount of reduction is fruitless and a matter of subjective interpretation, but it does appear that over the last few weeks several of those upheavals have transitioned into new phases of social unrest, especially in South America[2]. Free elections in Hong Kong shifted the momentum of protests there, but demonstrations in Lebanon worsened.


It should be noted that social “justice” is very much a Jupiterian quality as Jupiter rules law and justice in general. As Jupiter gains deeper traction into its own sign during the next year, and after Saturn enters its sign of Capricorn in late January 2020, we should expect to see more evidence of social activism and a thrust toward social justice that exposes strong feelings and deliberations about what constitutes “right” vs. “wrong.” Stay tuned.


December 2019 –Summary

Several planets are transiting through the sign of Sagittarius this month. Sagittarius is the sign of knowledge, wisdom, religion, justice, and education. It’s also a fire sign, which tends to makes it more energetic and action-oriented. With so many planets traversing through the sign at the same time, the impact from each is a function of the planets interacting with it and the length of time they spend in the sign. I will do my best to parse out the broader general effects, but in the end, individual details require information from the person’s birth chart.


Jupiter, a benefic planet and ruler of Sagittarius, is now in its own sign. This sets a more optimistic footing for the other transiting planets. It’s like going to a large party at someone’s house and the owner (in this case, a happy well-adjusted homeowner), is still at home. Things don’t tend to get out of hand as much when the owner is there. It also brings out some of Jupiter’s better qualities such as optimism, expansion, confidence and wealth, which influences each transiting planet. Jupiter will share the sign with Saturn until late January 2020, after which Saturn enters its own sign of Capricorn. Hence, although Jupiter tends to be expansive in nature, Saturn resists and forces us to exert more focused effort to achieve our goals. Accordingly, some of the more positive effects of Jupiter will still take more time to develop fully.


The longer-term combination of Jupiter and Ketu[3] in Sagittarius will last into September of 2020. On one level this will carry themes of deeper spirituality and support from our intuitive side (even if you don’t think you have an intuitive nature). On the other, it can give rise to disappointments in financial matters, children or education. Again though, specifics depend on individual charts.


Shorter-term transits this month include the conjunction Saturn and Venus in Sagittarius, which will tend to support business partnerships and our relationships with colleagues at work. At the same time though, it will present challenges and obstacles to our personal relationships and challenge our ability to express or receive emotional expressions with those who are closest to us.


Mars enters its own sign in late December, which works toward empowering our business relationships and projects.


The Sun, Jupiter and Ketu will be in close conjunction toward the end of the month which may raise our self-confidence levels but also generate a sense of lack in our direction and/or create a feeling of financial insecurity.



December 2019 – Detailed


· During December: seven planets will transit through the sign of Sagittarius. Each planet impacts the other, making predictions a bit more complicated and at times, contradictory. When transits point to different outcomes, the details of an individual's birth chart are needed to see how it plays out for that individual. Generally speaking, the longer a planet takes to transit a sign, the more its effect is noticed. Since these transits are occurring in the sign of Sagittarius, we expect the themes of law, justice, religion/spirituality, freedom, education, and finance to see more impact. In the U.S., Sagittarius is the Ascendent[4] , so it has more significance for the whole country.


· Dec 2019– Sep 2020: Jupiter and Ketu will slowly transit through Sagittarius until September 2020 (with an interruption in the spring & summer of 2020). This will manifest both positive and negative longer-term influences. On the one hand, Ketu can bring about feelings of financial insecurity or doubts about educational pursuits. On the other hand, Jupiter and Ketu together can create a stronger spiritual awareness with some detachment and disappointment in material pursuits. This attitude, over time, can bring about expansive actions that align with a higher purpose.


· Dec 4- Dec 14: Venus (relationships, harmony) & Saturn (work, pressures, stress) will be close to each other making that interaction more prominent. Here Saturn restricts emotions or puts pressure on harmony & relationships. On the positive side, it can help with work relationships and business partnerships. Therefore, this could be a perfect time for planning and strengthening your work relationships & connections, but personal relationships may experience stresses and strains as well as difficulty in expressing one’s inner feelings and emotions.


· Dec 15: Venus will exit Sagittarius and enter Saturn’s sign of Capricorn. Venus is unafflicted here and is very comfortable in Capricorn, a sign of work, effort, and actualization. When Venus enters Capricorn, this will likely bring relief from the stresses resulting from the earlier 12/4 – 12/14 transits, yet add stability and further progress in working partnerships and projects.


· Dec 25: Mars enters its own sign of Scorpio. Mars gains strength in its own sign, bringing aggressive, confident, transformative energy into action. This continues into early February. Unlike the November Mars/Venus transit, where Venus and Mars were passionately working to undermine and manipulate, here we find a little more harmonious situation between Mars and Venus. Mars brings energetic support to Venus’s creative activities & projects. Mars, in Scorpio, brings perseverance and staying power through transformative change at work and in action. Projects that have been well planned see the fruits of that planning come into effect, continuing into next year. A positive Mars adds the element of revitalization and stamina, giving those projects staying power.


· Dec 27: The Sun and Jupiter will be in exact conjunction. For about a week on either side of this date, self-confidence and general optimism may run at higher levels (with exceptions described in the Dec 30 transit below). When combined with the Mars transit, this will help to provide added confidence and optimism on active projects. However, be careful to avoid becoming overconfident during this window, especially when giving advice. In fact, be wary of taking advice or being sold on ideas from overly confident individuals during this time. When Jupiter is combust (close to the Sun), it can lead to problems from feeling or being too self-assured.


· Dec 30: The Sun and Ketu are in exact conjunction, but similar to the Jupiter-Sun conjunction above, its effects tend to be prominent for about a week before and after this date. This conjunction can reveal itself in different ways, and in some cases, can offset some of the optimism from the Sun-Jupiter combination above. On the one hand, this can be an uplifting self-reflection period when individuals identify with spirituality or spiritual activities, enhanced by the close proximity of Jupiter (knowledge and spirituality). On the other hand, this can be a time when individuals feel overlooked, hidden, or less sure about where they are going in life (despite the proximity of Jupiter). For some individuals, the holiday period has the potential of being a somber time or a period of unhappiness. The conjunction with Ketu has the potential to amplify those doubts and feelings. Doubts and uncertainties related to finances is a strong possibility due to the combination with Jupiter. Regardless of the reason, the best antidote is to be “awake” to the impact of the transit and take it one day at a time. Of course, we do what we can, but it’s best to let go of the urge to worry about future events. Become more reflective, turning inward, and let go of the belief that you can actually have full control over the situation.

[1]Signs are based on the sidereal calculation method which means they differ from Western Tropical signs by about 24°


[2] https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/the_americas/a-government-chased-from-its-capital-a-president-forced-into-exile-a-storm-of-protest-rages-in-south-america/2019/11/14/897f85ba-0651-11ea-9118-25d6bd37dfb1_story.html


[3] Ketu (the southern node) is one of two points where the lunar and solar ecliptics intersect and where the eclipse points for the Sun and Moon occur. (Rahu, the northern node, is the other point). In Vedic astrology these are referred to as planets even though technically they are points in space. They are known as “shadowy planets” with unique characteristics such as hiding and obscuring results or giving the effect of making their impact difficult to localize or pinpoint.


[4] The Ascendent is the sign that is rising on the eastern horizon at “birth”. The birth time that I use for the U.S is July 4, 1776, 18:30, Philadelphia, PA per the research done by James Kelleher.

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