TodayFree Tarot
grand cross with planets uranus, pluto, jupiter, mars

Align Yourself for April's Grand Square

Get ready for the most powerful planetary pattern of the year!
Rick Levine

Astrologers all around the world have been watching recent developments with great interest as we approach the fifth of seven history-changing squares between revolutionary Uranus and evolutionary Pluto, which is exact on April 21, 2014.

Take control of this powerful energy with a Mandala New Beginnings Tarot reading -- with a card for each Cardinal sign, this is just the spread to ease this big event!

The first of these squares occurred on June 24, 2012, and the final one is on March 16, 2015. Historically, the cycles of Uranus and Pluto have brought social and political upheaval, technological breakthrough, artistic and musical creativity, and a whole host of important events.

The most recent conjunction of Uranus and Pluto occurred in 1965-1966, and it defined the decade of the '60s with issues of civil rights, gender equality, student activism, political change, psychedelic drugs, and the emergence of a youth culture based upon new forms of musical expression. The '60s also saw the development and commercialization of the computer by IBM.

Although it will take years to gain the perspective we need to assess what these Uranus-Pluto squares of 2012-2015 will bring, some things are already obvious. We have seen a stirring of people's revolutions in Tunisia, Jordan, Yemen, Egypt, Syria, Sudan and Libya that began in 2011 as the first square grew close.

We have seen the Occupy Wall Street movement in the USA and revolutionary activity all over the world. We have seen the feminism of the '60s resurface as gender rights. We have seen the speed at which social values change with the widespread recognition of gay marriage. We have seen the public opinion tide change on the legalization of marijuana. And we have seen social networking technologies replace the music of the '60s as the communication medium for change.

The Grand Square of April 20-23, 2014

The upcoming Uranus-Pluto square that is exact on April 21 is part of the most dynamic planetary pattern we've seen in a long time. While unpredictable Uranus is forming an exact square with transformational Pluto, giant Jupiter exactly squares and opposes Uranus and Pluto on April 20.

And, by April 23, warrior Mars fills out the fourth corner of a rare Grand Square formed by these four planets on their cycles around Earth. As if that isn't enough to get our attention, the Moon joins the party as she joins up with Pluto on April 20.

Is this another end of the world?

No. We made it through the end of the Mayan calendar, but many astrologers have been frightening us again with talk of global war, social meltdown, earthquakes, volcanos and other disasters. Unfortunately, the truth is that there is more happening these days than at other times. We already have seen a spike in the news with Cold War rhetoric returning, as if someone dialed us back into the '60s. However, if we look at the Astrology, we can see this moment also holds great potential.

Squares and oppositions are about stress. It's like the old training adage, "No pain; no gain." We may feel the pressure to change from many areas of our lives. Not only is resistance futile, it could magnify the stress. Uranus works suddenly to relieve tension. Pluto is the "take no prisoners" planet; it plays for keeps. Jupiter is expansive; it can blow the intensity out of proportion. Although Mars can be angry, it also can be the assertive diplomat while retrograding in Libra. And the Moon's connection personalizes the tensions and brings them down to an individual level.

What's in a Name: Grand Square or Cardinal Grand Cross?

When three or more planets create a geometrical pattern, we astrologers call this a configuration. Traditional configurations are formed by aspects, such as "trines" and "squares." A Grand Trine is formed when three planets are trine to each other. A Grand Square is formed when four planets are each square to one another, marking four corners of a square. In this configuration, the planets on opposite corners are in a straight line with Earth in the center. If we were to draw an imaginary line from these opposite planets and through the center of the Earth, the planets on the four corners of the Grand Square would form a Grand Cross.

The planets in the April 20 configuration are each in "Cardinal" or season-starting signs. These four signs -- Aries, Cancer, Libra and Capricorn -- are about initiating change. Although this is technically a "Grand Cardinal Square," the popular media is referring to it as the "Cardinal Grand Cross." They are one and the same. Although both names are used to describe the configuration on April 20-23, I prefer to use the proper traditional name that correctly references the defining aspect of the square.

So, what should we do about all this?

First of all, don't panic. Fear breeds more fear, and it prompts us to do stupid things. Don't wait until it's too late. If there are issues in your life that need your attention, get started dealing with them now. Denial is not an option anymore. It's better to be the lightning than to be struck by it. Think about those things that hold you back. What stands between you and success? Where are there blockages to your happiness? What can you do to overcome difficult situations that you have accepted for too long?

There is a Hopi prophecy that tells us the river is now flowing very fast, and that some people are afraid. They will try to hold on to the shore, yet will be torn apart. The Hopi elders say we must let go of the shore and push into the flowing water. They tell us to look and see who is there with us and create community with them. They tell us to banish the word struggle from our lives and to act in a sacred manner and to celebrate. They remind us that we are the ones we've been waiting for.

Astrology is a roadmap through time. By understanding the nature of the planetary cycles, we can see the great opportunity we have during these years of the Uranus-Pluto squares. We can see the dynamic tensions that are coming to the surface during the Grand Square of April 20-23. By understanding the promise of creative breakthrough, we can see that the moment to act is now.

Gandhi said, "If we could change ourselves, the tendencies in the world would also change." Individually, we cannot go out and change the world. But we can change ourselves.

What are you waiting for?

Get guidance from the Cardinal signs with a Mandala New Beginnings Tarot reading »

Table of Aspects During the Grand Square (All Times EDT)

JupitersquareUranusApr 203:28 a.m.
JupiteroppositionPlutoApr 207:26 p.m.
MoonsquareUranusApr 208:27 p.m.
MoonconjunctPlutoApr 208:31 p.m.
MoonoppositeJupiterApr 208:32 p.m.
MoonsquareMarsApr 209:55 p.m.
UranussquarePlutoApr 213:20 p.m.
MarssquareJupiterApr 223:27 p.m.
MarsoppositeUranusApr 233:08 a.m.
MarssquarePlutoApr 239:37 a.m.