Libra has a reputation for being nice and for putting other people first. But Libra also symbolizes comparison; to some extent, most of us gauge our relative success by looking at what others have accomplished. Even when we’re smiling on the outside, our inner Librans are keeping score and making sure the scales balance. When they don’t… no more Mr. Libra nice guy.
Some of our earliest, most shocking realizations about the world are about fairness. “It’s not fair!” squeals the 5-year-old whose older brother gets a later bedtime. “It’s not fair!” objects the teenager who is denied her own car, even though all her friends have one. “It’s not fair!” shouts the employee who has been let go in his company’s latest round of firings, even though his laziest coworker gets to keep his job.
Life isn’t fair, at least not according to our (probably limited) understanding of fairness. And it’s especially galling when you’ve played by the rules and done everything you were supposed to do, and have not been rewarded for it but in fact punished. Like young people who were pushed to attend college, sometimes incurring massive debt in the process, only to graduate and find there are no jobs for them. Or workers near retirement age who find their guaranteed pension has vanished into thin air.
For many of us keeping score at home, the scales don’t seem to balance. When our internal accounting system triggers a fairness audit, we have a range of options. We can attempt to steer the world toward greater fairness through activism and education. We can surrender to cynicism, anger, and laziness. We can turn to faith; Venus, Libra’s ruling planet, is after all exalted in Pisces, the sign of spiritual awareness. Or else we can simply ignore everything that makes us unhappy.
The chart for this Full Moon (March 31, 2018, 5:37 am Pacific / 8:37 am Eastern), with the Sun and Moon square the formidable duo of Mars and Saturn in Capricorn, fairly screams, “State of emergency! Threat level orange! All hands on deck!” But after a couple of decades of fighting hard for a better world, I’ll admit that these days I find it much more painful to pay attention to things I feel powerless to change.
I feel for the Pluto in Libra generation (born roughly between Oct. 1971 and Aug. 1984) now reaching key astrological ages – the oldest of whom are now past, and the youngest just entering, their “mid-life crisis” aspects (Uranus opposition, Neptune and Pluto squares, Saturn’s opposition). They’re gotten kind of a raw deal, and they know it. But along with the Saturn/Uranus/Neptune in Capricorn generation born in the mid-1980s, and the ferociously idealistic generation born with Pluto in Sagittarius and Uranus/Neptune in Aquarius that have grown up in a post-9/11 world, Team Pluto in Libra is one of our best hopes for sorting out the messes we face.
It’s always been the young people who have had to fight for justice, for more or less the same reason we send young people to fight battles on foreign soil: they’re young enough to believe they’re immortal and can’t fail. Besides, each generation defines itself by working out its own outer-planet astrological signatures at the macro-level, through railing at the government, wars, and economy that they inherited from previous generations. The Saturn/Pluto in Leo Baby Boomers dealt with the Uranus/Pluto conjunction of the 60s by pretty much blowing up society as we knew it (not necessarily a bad thing); the Uranus/Pluto in Virgo generation confronted economic peril, a drastically altered employment landscape, and philosophical extremism while Pluto was in Sagittarius.
And now we’re all reorienting ourselves in the wake of the transiting Uranus/Pluto square, and dealing with problems that are far beyond the sincerest gestures of well-meaning individuals. These are times that call for collective action, and we’re fortunate that the generation born with Pluto in Libra has a gift for collaboration that surpasses anything we’ve seen in my lifetime. Age-wise, they are next up in the world leadership batting order. It’s going to be up to them to help us remember the power, responsibility, and redemption of living as a society.
And no, that isn’t fair to them. But as much as we yearn for fairness, the best we can probably hope for is a kind of logic to the way things work out. As individuals, human beings are wildcards, but as a species we seem to move in a fairly linear way toward more or less logical conclusions. Each moment of epic societal fail has a pedigree, a family tree that you can trace to understand its origins and to identify the point at which its DNA became corrupted. But the tree also has new branches and leaves that represent new generations with fresh energy… and that is a source of hope, a promise that wounds can heal and that day will inevitably follow night. It’s not fairness, exactly, but there is a kind of symmetry to it, and balance. And at the Full Moon in Libra, that’s not such a bad consolation prize.