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Astrological aspects: The semi-sextile

In classifying astrological aspects, the semi-sextile (i.e. 30 degrees apart) is usually considered a "minor aspect", alongside with the quincunx, the semi-square, the sesquiquadrate, etc.

Astrological aspects: The semi-sextile
Astrological aspects: The semi-sextile

I think that's fair enough because if two planets are in semi-sextile, they're in two consecutive signs, like Sagittarius and Capricorn, Libra and Scorpio. It’s like two people, standing fairly close together, who can only catch a glimpse of each other from the corners of their eyes. They can't see the other person in full view or understand what possible connections or relevance may exist between them. It could be a stranger that will never cross your path again, or someone you may have the chance to interact with later. But it could also be an old friend whom you just don't recognise right away!

That's why semi-sextiles usually aren't very dynamic or "eventful", unlike squares, for example. There isn't a compelling need to find out more or to "resolve" something. The best phrase to describe the energy is "keeping it in view", in case it turns out to be significant later on... and in fact, it WILL turn out to be significant!

After two planets have formed a conjunction, the first semi-sextile between them is actually half-way to becoming sextile (i.e. 60 degrees apart). Sextiles are a major soft aspect because it represents a window of opportunity, if acted upon, for something to really take off and blossom. This first semi-sextile between two planets is therefore a landmark in itself. It’s the first time the two planets touch base since the conjunction!

We just had a Lunar Eclipse in Taurus on November 19. It made soft aspects to Pluto in Capricorn as well as a square to Jupiter in Aquarius. In other words, this eclipse triggered the very tight semi-sextile between these two heavy planets, but it was rarely (if at all!) mentioned when people discussed this lunar eclipse!

In fact, Jupiter semi-sextiled Pluto three times this year:

April 21: Jupiter (Aqu 26°47’) semi-sextiles Pluto (Cap 26°47’)

September 11: Jupiter (Aqu 24°28’) semi-sextiles Pluto (Cap 24°28’)

November 28: Jupiter (Aqu 24°57’) semi-sextiles Pluto (Cap 24°57’)

Even though the semi-sextile is usually not considered important, in the case of this series of Jupiter-Pluto semi-sextiles, I think it's worth noting: First, Pluto is returning in late-November, for the 5th and last time, to virtually the exact same spot in Capricorn (24°53') when it first conjoined Jupiter in April 2020 that kick-started a new 13-year cycle between them. Pluto's return to this spot represents the end to a long process of purging and renewal. Second, the semi-sextile is also the first aspect (major or minor) that Jupiter and Pluto make since their new cycle started last year.

In general, you can understand any Jupiter-Pluto cycle as meaning "what doesn't kill you makes you stronger!", but at this point we still don't have a clear idea of what exactly would come out of this Jupiter-Pluto cycle. However, we’re already catching a glimpse of "what may happen" later on. What first emerged around this Lunar Eclipse would have ample room for growth when Jupiter in Pisces sextiles that first Jupiter-Pluto 2020 conjunction at 24°53' Capricorn.

So when will that happen? Answer: April 2022, just when Jupiter will also be conjunct Neptune in Pisces, launching a new cycle between themselves!

How you experience these big planetary cycles depends on how they interact with planets, angles and points in your birth chart. But given this Lunar Eclipse has triggered this semi-sextile, what's first surfaced emerged during this time would become a lot more significant in spring next year. After all, catching a glimpse of something from the corner of your eye is already the beginning of consciousness, the start of a new level of understanding!

Pay particular attention to which house(s) Jupiter and Pluto are currently passing through in your birth chart, and note the house Jupiter will be in when it's in Pisces in spring. This will show the room for growth after all the crises you've endured since 2020. Just keep this in view!

Interested in more astrology? Check out my online chart-reading services or private, one-to-one astrology tutoring!

Astrologer Belinda's bio

About Belinda

Based in Hong Kong, Belinda has got over 10 years of chart-reading experience and holds four university degrees, including Psychology and Counselling. Before becoming a professional astrologer, she was doing a highly stable and well-paid job. She switched careers because astrology had simply changed her life… Read on

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