The Importance of the Solar Return Moment

The exact time of one's solar return is a sacred annual event for each individual. It happens at only one specific moment each year. It is at that moment - and only that moment - in which the Earth/Sun relationship is exactly the same as when you were born.

The quality of that "moment" (i.e. the time of one's solar return) becomes the "seed" of that annual cycle. It is the basis for a horoscope that will describe the astrological factors in effect for that one-year cycle. A "moment" of such importance favors a certain mind-set of the individual as it occurs. This is especially true if one accepts the premise that thought creates (or influences) reality. If every moment of time has its own unique quality, then one would want the "quality" of the solar return "moment" to be special in a favorable way, especially since it becomes the horoscope for the year in that person's life.

Given this premise, it is wise to enter the solar return moment with a sense of reverence, ensuring that this moment is somehow empowered with clarity, freedom, forgiveness, peace, gratitude, joy and love. A simple meditative ritual of some sort, incorporating positive visualization can only be a good idea.

Choosing One's Solar Return

One of the most exciting facts about solar returns is that you may actually choose your own horoscope wheel for the year! The planets are where they are longitudinally and in relationship to each other (aspects) regardless of where on Earth you experience your Solar Return. The House structure, however, changes, depending on where you are. Your Solar Return planets are in particular Houses, aspecting or not aspecting the angles of the chart in a certain way if you experience your Solar Return in Los Angeles. Certainly all of the planets will be in different Houses in your Solar Return chart if you decide to experience your Solar Return in Hawaii or Rio de Janeiro instead.

In choosing your solar return chart for any given year, there are two basic questions you might ask: first, "What area of life do I want to highlight (in a positive manner) this year?," and secondly, "What are my boundaries, or limitations, in traveling at the time of my solar return?" Obviously if the most astrologically desirable place to celebrate your solar return is somewhere in China, a combination of financial, governmental, and time factors may make that choice an impossibility. So you must work within the boundaries of your means, or those means placed upon you by "outside" forces.

In answering the first question, you should remember some of the basic rules presented earlier. For instance, a balance of planets in the different house types is desirable; a majority of planets in angular houses - or at least three personal planets posited there -- will indicate a "significant" year; an overabundance of planets in cadent houses will tend to indicate the opposite -- a year of changes and/or preparation for future years.

Locating planets in harmonious aspect to an angle is most desirable, and so too is the positioning of benefics (Venus or Jupiter) close to a house cusp -- especially in that house which pertains to your areas of interest for this year. Another desirable placement is a harmonious aspect between a planet in a particular house to the planet that rules that house. If you are able to arrange for a combination of these factors to occur, according to the house chosen to be highlighted, then it is a favorable indication that matters ruling that area of your life will flow successfully in the coming year.

There are, of course, some factors that will inhibit even the finest of house and angle arrangements. If the aspects between your solar return planets to each other, and even to your natal planets, are discordant according to the expressions you wish to highlight, there is not much that can be done to "assure" their favorable expression this year. At best, you can "lessen" their potential negative manifestation by traveling somewhere that will position an angle to make a "soft" (harmonious) aspect to one of the planets involved. For example, if there is a T-square in the solar return chart involving planets in houses that you have determined are important to you in the coming year, you may wish to travel somewhere at the time of your solar return that will bring the horizon (Ascendant - Descendant axis) or meridian (Midheaven and I.C. axis) into a favorable aspect (sextile/trine) to the planet and/or house ruler you are concerned about.

It is also possible to more greatly empower positive aspects between planets in your solar return chart by simply traveling to a point in which these same angles make yet another positive aspect to them. For instance, if you have a trine between two planets that relate to an area of great personal interest this year, you might consider traveling somewhere for your birthday that will find the Midheaven or Ascendant forming a grand trine to these planets. That location would greatly enhance the expression and experience of the two trining planets during the course of the year.

In addition, planning a trip on your birthday can be an excellent way to infuse conscious effort into that most personally special of all days of the year. Its unfoldment can be an annual pilgrimage, a mission, a challenge for you to have a super experience, knowing that the experiences of that day will be the foundation for the whole of your next year of life.