Part of being human is encountering and dealing with limits. For example, you actually cannot fly as a bird does, even though you might imagine yourself doing so. Unlike a bird, you were not born with wings. Even so, you do have something else going for you — free will. You can choose how to deal with your limits.
You can choose to allow your lack of wings to confine you to the ground. Conversely, you can also elect to be defined by what you do have to work with. For instance, you can choose to employ your hands to supplement your imagination and make a device that gets you off the ground.
The same principle applies to working with astrology’s corollary for limits: Saturn. All too often, the ringed planet is interpreted so as to take only its confining downside into account. Actually, that’s not a surprising perception. Nonetheless, it is outdated.
For all anyone knew, an emblematically stern and authoritarian Saturn represented the outer limits of the solar system until just over two centuries ago. Interestingly, human life on Earth often followed suit. Up until relatively recently, most people’s prospects in life were confined by the station they were born into. For most of human history, responsibility was defined as the acceptance of that confinement.
Then, right around the time Uranus was unexpectedly discovered in 1781, there came an age of revolution. The all-but-unprecedented experiment of replacing hereditary monarchies and opportunistic warlords with participatory republics was an audacious idea. It was a bold and imaginary concept of instituting a greater freedom accompanied by greater responsibility for exercising free will, so that a previously subservient and politically inconsequential majority could define itself.
What has followed since is the continuous application of imagination and innovation. The result has been both additional planetary discoveries and the evolution of alternative models for governance.
Now it would seem that our world is poised at a critical passage. There are presently a significant number of people who would have astrology once again confined within the limits of Saturn’s orbit. There are even more who would surrender individual freedom and cede individual responsibility to a strong leader. Interestingly, both the astrological and political initiatives to roll back to a bygone era require either stubborn denial or willful ignorance of all that has been proven since the 18th Century.
It has been proven that awareness of Uranus, Neptune, Pluto and other objects in the solar system have value for astrologers. It has also been demonstrated beyond reasonable doubt that political power concentrated in the hands of only a few serves the best interests of only a few.
Indeed, even Saturn itself clearly indicates that progress must ultimately triumph over regress. Earlier this year (on March 25, 2016), Saturn stationed retrograde in the 17th degree of Sagittarius.
Tomorrow, just before 6 am EDT (09:49:37 UTC), that retrograde will end in the 10th degree of Sagittarius. Saturn will then slowly resume direct motion and progress into the 28th degree of Sagittarius before its next retrograde begins in 2017. As result, the net motion of Saturn is always forward, not backward, continuously moving beyond previous limits.
As above, so below. Even allowing for periodic setbacks, it is natural for you and humanity as a whole to ultimately and continuously move forward and transcend the confinement of previous limits, to define oneself anew. To do so takes imagination and freely exercised will, which is where you come in.
It is never natural or in harmony with any part of the universe (even Saturn) either to go backwards or to remain confined. Yet, somewhat ironically, you can choose to do so. Just as Saturn has a confining downside and a defining upside, so does free will.
Even though Saturn will inevitably and predictably start moving forward again tomorrow, it is not fated that you or humanity as a whole will do the same. Unlike in the heavens or on the zodiac, the direction you and the rest of us take from this point on will be a matter of choice.
Offered In Service
So insightful Len, this broader understanding of Saturn you present today reminds us to not let our perceptions become too narrowly focused. With so many symbols in the language of astrology one can, unfortunately, limit one’s scope of any single symbol to just a few key words. The ancient astrologers might have had more Time (with fewer planets) to explore the full implication of a planet such as Saturn and thus grasp how he could be supportive as well as restrictive.
I wonder though if it ever occurred to any of them (before the discovery of Uranus) that those concepts could even be broader than what experience (up until then) had revealed through manifestation. Saturn was the ultimate outermost reality check.
So how to integrate this newly discovered Uranus; disruptive in itself, this discovery would challenge even the most basic, tried and true beliefs and threaten (Uranus was opposite Mars when discovered) age old traditions (symbolized by Saturn) of astrology. Even today, Saturn’s hold on reality is being challenged; not so much by new discoveries in the Cosmos, but more by transits of the outer planets, primarily Neptune at this time.
Transiting Saturn and transiting Uranus too have a working sesqui-quadrate aspect although with Saturn’s station falling about 22 arc minutes short of perfecting the aspect, it is still quite effective. The transiting personal planet Venus will act as a buffer (or maybe a conductor) between them as she will square Saturn as he stations direct tomorrow, while forming her own sesqui-quadrate from 9+ Virgo to Uranus at 24+ Aries. Sesqui-quadrates are part of the square family of aspects but not as powerful. More like a nuisance rather than a full-on crisis I should think.
My guess would be that people with strong Aquarian influence would be sensitive of a conflict between the need for reality and an established order in society (large and small), and the disruptive nature of truth that Uranus insists on delivering. The calm and nonabrasive nature of Venus could provide that. This comes of course just as transiting Jupiter perfects his opposition to transiting Chiron as part of the complex patterns making up the Aquarian Full Moon chart on the 18th.
You have confirmed for us here Len, that, above all, Saturn is a survivor and because he is connected to Time and because so often timing is everything, Saturn will continue to confine or hold the world together, while timing his acceptance of change when circumstances warrant. Saturn’s no fool. As an Aquarian yourself I’m sure you have experienced the need for stability (Saturn) and the audacity of change (Uranus) vying for your loyalty at the same time. Perhaps you are sensing this delicate balance and are aware that Saturn is preparing for one of those times when he will accept (probably measured) change; in this country and in the world. Let us know, will you?
Saturn’s transiting my 4th house, and as I mentioned in a comment on Amanda’s recent post I am going through some changes in the relationship environment, which is naturally bringing about changes in my home environment. Recently my partner moved in. Now I’ve spoken my truth about needing an open relationship, and now she’s broken up with me. This is not our first, second, or third time around with a similar scenario mind you. Ah, the saga continues. But it’s all for the good, because we are off that train, and on another. We are earnestly in search of healing, not continual wounding, which is unfortunately what inevitably occurs when we descend into Saturnian-Limitsville by confining one another in our “chains of love”. At least, that’s my perspective.
Saturn’s rewarding me with a broader, more stable, less sexually frustrated base to operate from. Pluto going through my 5th house has been quite the wrecking ball in terms of redefining how I express my love, sexuality, and creativity. Naturally, Saturn’s helping refine, re-measure, re-appropriate, and giving me tools to do precise detail work on what I consider to be the root chakra of my chart, my fourth house. Saturn’s giving me more than it’s taking away, to paraphrase Eric.
So relieved to know that we are ending this Saturn retro soon, Len. I knew this “moment” of it’s retrograde would feel simultaneously like a stall-out and a re-boot and indeed it has. Now, forward onto natal Saturn coming up later on in Sagg (the return and all that).
Be, I appreciate your comments about AQ’s, truth,Uranus, Saturn and all that brouhaha. Not a AQ sun as is Len, but your description is apt and useful. Maybe it’s my natal Merc and Chiron hanging out there with the water bearer.
Sounds like you’ve found a good deal of inner strength Michael. Best of luck with the re’s of re-working how your life is ordered.
Anyone looking for an opportune moment to give chance a piece in their life might like to take advantage of today’s Sun trine Uranus at 16:23 EDT (Tuesday 16th).
I’ve often felt that Saturn acts as a safety net, designed to allow beneficial change in society but restrict the more dangerously-excessive Uranian energies. Good governance feels like that. To maintain social stability there must be order, but not so much order that we become ossified against change. What’s the point of having a brain the size of a planet if you’re not allowed to give it free rein to implement a bright idea or two from time to time? Occasionally an Einstein becomes the establishment.
With Saturn currently regaining forward motion and Uranus beginning its long slow retrograde it’s possible the two may complement each other at this time. It’s rather like being on a train in a station and watching another train through the window. If the other train moves forward it may seem as though it is standing still and you are moving backwards. On this occasion, however, both trains are moving at equal speed in opposite directions although, again, this only seems to be the case.
Two 16s, and that number 23 again, Len. There must be something going on.