Cardinal Grand Cross

Part 2 – Here and Now

In the Christian calendar, Easter represents the crucifixion, as well as the resurrection.  The symbol for this is a cross, though not the equal armed cross.  In the esoteric astrology of Alice Bailey, the Cardinal cross represents initiation, and is the most potent of the three types of grand cross (the other two being the Mutable, and the Fixed crosses).  This week the two traditions coincide.  In a birthchart it is rare to find a grand cross, but those who have one are challenged by personal crises which may sometimes feel like a trial, or an initiation.  The task for us this week is to understand and embrace the personal and collective challenges it brings.  We can start by deconstructing the Grand Cross into its component parts:

Components of the Grand Cross

The Grand Cross is composed of 4 planets in opposition, which also creates 4 squares.  Learn to recognize these forces within yourself, around you, and in the wider world.  You may then be alert to ideas, or guidance, about the best way forward.  Under aspects I will give the timings of all these components, but you may notice any of them at any time throughout the week, and that may help you understand what is going on and how you should proceed, particularly if you have a responsibility for others or are caught up in a group drama.  You may already know what this week’s dilemmas may entail, and it may be one issue or a complexity of issues.


The oppositions are easier to deal with, as the signs of the two planets have a connection which enables them to blend or be transcended in unity.

Pluto opposite Jupiter

Pluto opposite Jupiter is about power play, with often one protagonist trying to exercise their power to the hilt, as in the current display by Putin.  The connecting issues of the signs which they occupy are Order (Pluto is in Capricorn) and Family (Jupiter is in Cancer) so work/life balance may be required.

Uranus opposite Mars

This combination is about accidents or incident-proneness, and the excitement of initiating change.  In truth there are no accidents, as everything has a purpose and there is a meaning for everything, but often we are taken unawares and do not realize the higher Soul purpose in the heat of the moment.

The Squares

The squares are the most challenging components of the Grand Cross.  They  involve compulsion, seemingly wrong turns, clashes and disharmony.  As there are four, it may seem as though events are locked into position, and there are few options on the ground.  But spiritually, there may be a bigger perspective, and more options than at first glance.  Again, taking into account the interlocking squares will help bring them together in your mind when you encounter them, and help you pull together your options, particularly if you are in a position of leadership.  If you are not in a position of leadership you may have a valuable insight for the group.

Pluto square Uranus

This is the most important of the squares, and I have blogged separately about this  (find it below this blog, or by clicking the bar on the right entiteled “Uranus square Pluto – Phase 5”).  This seemingly anarchic aspect is revolutionary on both counts (Uranus and Pluto) and has been operating for a couple of years, and due to go on for another year.  It is therefore a process, technically one of dismantling outworn institutions, but in its negative form is revolution for its own sake without a thought of what will replace the turmoil.  Thus some of the Arab Spring movements (which began when Uranus entered Aries, before the Uranus-Pluto square) have found that the new forms of society haven’t materialized as hoped, and there is still much work to do.

Uranus  square Jupiter

This square  is one of the two easier components: there is an element of surprise, luck and hope in this mix.  It is also an opportunity for the entrepreneurs among you, especially if motivated by good will, love of humanity, and a desire to help rather than only self-interest, to make a difference.  It is a good idea to examine your motives thoroughly, so that your actions have the highest outcomes.  I have included the best outcomes under Aspects, for each component, so that if you see that the proceedings are going towards positive solutions, you can help them along.

Jupiter square Mars

Jupiter squaring Mars brings a concentration of energy and enthusiasm, a fuel for getting things done on a practical level.  There is also some joy to be had, where the atmosphere is conducive to smooth outcomes.  For instance, in meditation this can produce ecstasy, bliss or travel to other dimensions.  It is the energy of rapture.

Mars square Pluto

Second in order of difficulty after Uranus square Pluto, this aspect occurs once every year or two, and often coincides with violence on some scale, such as the assassination of a prominent figure.  It will be important to be vigilant about aggression, coercion or even violence, and not be complacent.

The whole

Take all of these components into account and bring them together in your mind or meditation, using perhaps a symbol or a word such as “Peace” as your central purpose or intention. The aspect section which follows gives you the timing of each square and opposition, and possible higher outcomes which you can assist.


This morning the Sun went into Taurus, representing the indomitable spirit needed for this week of the Grand Cardinal Cross, and the will power to stand firm in the face of what does not seem right, e.g. non-violent resistance.  But also knowing when to surrender to the divine, and also the wisdom to know the difference.  More often than not, our own personal will is actually aligned with the divine will.

Also this morning one of the easier squares took place: that of Jupiter square Uranus.  This is it folks!  The first leg of the Grand Cross, and the spring board for hope that things will change for the better.  There is an element of surprise and luck, e.g. you may think you have made a wrong turn, but it may have been for your own protection, saving you from greater disruption.

Optimal Outcome: Opportunity for the Entrepreneur

This evening Jupiter opposes Pluto, which is the power play or stand off element of the Grand Cross.  One party may overestimate their power, and power itself may be seen for what it is.

Optimal Outcome: The limits of Power are reached and Co-operation Beckons

Tomorrow, Uranus squares Pluto (Phase 5).  There could be a total disruption.  If it were not a Bank Holiday in the U.K. people would have felt like striking!  If you are within a family dynamic, someone may rebel or go on strike.  A Bank Holiday may be a safer haven to act out such feelings!  In the wider world, this may be one of the stickier moments in confrontations.

Optimal Outcome: Stress may turn into Surrender and Relaxation after reaching a Peak

On Tuesday (22nd) Jupiter squares Mars, which can produce pure energy and enthuisiasm combined.  Some types may want to fan the flames of conflagration, however.  This aspect can propel the consciousness into another dimension, such as in meditation, or in others it may take them into a misguided direction, e.g.  when people can get in the wrong sort of company.

Optimal Outcome: Creative Action or Energies and Ideas brought through from other Dimensions

On Wednesday (23rd) Mars opposes Uranus in the morning, which brings another opportunity for change and surprise (if not shock).  Following on from yesterday, your motto needs to be “Be Prepared”!  What contingency plans do you have?  Think through loopholes in advance and be prepared to institute interim measures which will be helpful to reconstruction.  You may be required to think on your feet.

Optimal Outcome: She/He Who Prepares Wins

Still in the morning on Wednesday, Mercury enters Taurus, and you may change your mindset.  If you have been in a combative mindset (Mercury in Aries) you may now be thinking more in terms of stability and taking practical thoughts or steps.  It will be easier to have patience and think of the longer view.  However helpful, this may prove to be a background feature, as the Cardinal Cross has not quite completed its work.

Later in the day Mars squares Pluto, and so you cannot rest on your laurels.  This is one of the two more destructive of the four squares.  There may be international tensions, and violence abroad, and tension at home.  If you are aware of any of the components of the Grand Cross at this time, it is good to actively defuse any tensions.  If you are not required out in the field, hunker down and protect your own interests.  Surrender may be an option, but it is essential to look to the safety and welfare of the weakest of the tribe, such as the elderly or the disabled, as you move on collectively.

Optimal Outcome: Tension recognized and Defused

It is always darkest before the Dawn, and the Cardinal Grand Cross certainly ends with a confrontational crescendo of Mars square Pluto.  Thursday (24th) is a respite from aspects, and the beginning of the Dawn.

Friday (25th) has a trine between Venus and Saturn, a reconstruction of sorts, an opportunity to rebuild relationships or new foundations after the brinkmanships and demands of most of the week.

On Saturday (26th) the Sun conjuncts Mercury at 6 degrees Taurus, and thoughts and ideas crystallize about how to proceed in a practical and calm direction.  Later, Mercury sextiles Neptune and a space is cleared to receive inspiration and to bring practical and spiritual ideas together.

In all my years of blogging, I have never known a week like it!  It will be an intense week of learning, experiencing and challenge, but I hope meaning and fun will be in the mix too, so we’ll be able to see it as a memorable shift.

The week in bullet points:

  • Today – Surprise, and Power
  • Tomorrow – Complexity and Change
  • Tuesday – Energy and Enthusiasm
  • Wednesday – Incidents, and the need to defuse tension
  • Friday – Reconstruction in relationships
  • Saturday – Inspired thought