The new Moon in Aquarius (and the Chinese New Year) occurs on Jan. 29, 2006 at 9:15 a.m. EST in Washington, D.C. With the Sun, Moon, and Mercury opposite stern Saturn, and Mars in Taurus opposite Jupiter in Scorpio in the heavens--along with powerful Pluto on the Midheaven of this particular chart--this moment is the very picture of confrontational drama about things that matter the most.

Three signs in the zodiac are very concerned with the idea of truth: Libra, Sagittarius, and Aquarius. Knowing that Oprah Winfrey was born on Jan 29, 1954, I had wondered for a while what this new moon would mean for her life. Also taking into consideration that Jupiter's transit in Scorpio would bring about many months of digging for what is hidden, I figured it was only a matter of time before something compelling would capture the nation's attention. (This week's drama is just the beginning to be sure.)

Once again, we owe our celebrities a debt of gratitude. They 'act out' the lesson plan for us all on the world stage. And by knowing their charts, we get to understand how astrology works.

Aquarian Oprah has Saturn, the planet of karma, at 9 Degrees of Scorpio. James Frey, a Virgo, was born on Sept. 12, 1969. Oddly enough, Virgo is the sign of integrity. He has Mars at 24 degrees of Sagittarius in hard aspect to his Sun at 19 Virgo and Pluto at 24 Virgo. This aspect suggests a struggle with the truth--and even a fear of being honest that may stem from the pressure to serve several 'masters' at once. In this case, his agent and/or publisher's reported refusal to package his work as a novel based on a true story. His appearance on Oprah last Thursday was quite the Hobson's choice. Could he have really stood up for himself and revealed all? His Saturn is at 8 degrees of Taurus, exactly opposite Oprah's, implying a very strong karmic connection and even a date with destiny between them.

Transiting Saturn at 8 degrees of Leo (January 2006), was key in triggering this dynamic moment of truth. Saturn is the teacher. He insists on accountability and responsibility. On earth, he enforces the law of cause and effect. And in this week's new moon the message for the collective is clear: it is time to be truthful to the very best of your ability or risk humiliation and other, much more painful, consequences.

On Thursday's show, the confrontation between Oprah and James was painful to watch. She is much stronger than he is in every way--she even has a "Win" in her name where he has none (Frey and WinFrey). But it was excellent television. There was also a lesson in ethics, in courage, in civics, in media, personal accountability, and human relations for all of us.

Extremely interesting was the show's panel, which included publisher Nan Talese, Richard Cohen, Stanley Crouch, and New York Times columnists Maureen Dowd and Frank Rich--who made an important point. He acknowledged the importance of telling the truth, but he also said that the scrutiny here may be misplaced--we should be applying this sort of attention to our world leaders whose misrepresentations of the truth, (WMD's in Iraq, for example) have much more dire consequences.

Incidentally, the new moon also hits Vice President Dick Cheney's chart (born Jan 30, 1941) and President Bush's chart (with 8 Leo rising) very dramatically. Pressure will mount on this administration as it will on us all to have the courage to face and confront that which we must in ourselves and in each other, and to demand the truth. With James Frey there's a few million dollars (and Oprah's credibility) at stake. With Bush, Cheney, and other world leaders, it's millions of lives.

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