Man is a microcosm, or a little world, because he is an extract from all the stars and planets of the whole firmament, from the earth and the elements; he is their quintessence.

- Paracelsus

On January 12, Saturn and Pluto met in Capricorn for the first time since 1518. Astrologers refer to this planetary conjunction as a synod—from the Greek word, synodos, which means “a traveling together.” The more slowly a synod moves, the more powerful its influence on human affairs. Saturn and Pluto come together in a new synodic cycle every 33-37 years which impacts the world on a macro level, introducing change and sometimes upheaval.

The 1914 meeting in Cancer marked the beginning of World War I; whereas the 1947 connection in Leo corresponded with the reordering of the international order in which the US took the leadership role in the promotion of democracy, globalization, civil rights, and the rule of law. Saturn and Pluto last met in Libra in 1982, the start of a new era of laissez-faire capitalism which led to an economic and stock market boom.

Saturn is the planet of responsibility, structure, order, fairness, and justice. Some say the rings of Saturn represent our karma, which we must come to bear. Pluto governs transformation and rebirth. This fierce planet thrives on chaos and is the instigator of change from the inside out. In combination, Saturn and Pluto force necessary confrontations with cultural and personal issues that we can no longer deny or resist.

A Saturn-Pluto synodic cycle can bring about new political and societal structures or reform old ones as it seeks to balance unjust conditions, circumstances, and situations. Based on astrological history, we know this celestial event will cause some monumental and globally felt shifts.

When the fruits of society’s labor become maldistributed, the system of capitalism and democracy ultimately breaks down with consequences that are potentially terrifying. If we had to guess, we may see a “societal reset” via a leftward lurch in economic thinking, the creation of new legislation to reign in the power of big corporations, and a closing of the massive gap between rich and poor.

Something has to happen. We are already hearing some of the wealthiest clamoring for higher taxes on themselves. The Business Round Table has declared that the purpose of a corporation is not just to serve shareholders but to “create value for all stakeholders.” Saturn and Pluto demand that we take responsibility for the discord we have produced and encourage us to create more harmoniously so that we can evolve collectively.

In other words, we could be entering a period in which Saturn bestows its blessings on the good guys, those who have endured its painful lessons: the hard working, the humble, the compassionate, and the appreciative. In contrast, the bad guys, those who manipulated the system and reaped unfair advantages, will have to pay their karmic debt.

In the above context, could we see the returns on labor finally increase relative to those on capital? Ideally, this happens through higher wages and fiscal redistribution. The alternative is much worse: stocks fall under the weight of the cosmos to restore order. The only way to reduce inequality is to make poor people richer or rich people poorer.

Nature is relentless and unchangeable, and it is indifferent to whether its hidden reasons and actions are understandable to man or not.

- Galileo

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