Saturn entered Sagittarius on December 23rd and will remain in that sign until June 14, 2015 when it will retrograde back into Scorpio until September 17, 2015 when it will move back into Sagittarius until it leaves on December 19, 2017.
The planet Saturn serves as the teacher and the mentor and he is often feared because his lessons can be quite strict. He is known for creating delays and disappointments, for applying the brakes when all we want to do is move forward, and for manifesting as back problems, car problems and financial troubles if we fail to heed his warnings.
In medieval astrology Saturn was known as the “greater malefic” (with Mars as the “lesser malefic”) – his presence in the birth chart was thought to bring ruin and misery. Saturn is considered malefic in Vedic astrology as well, representing the principle of karma that is inescapable and unchangeable.
In the modern transformational astrology that I practice, nothing is inescapable and unchangeable. Our fate is the hand we are dealt, and we choose the manner in which we play that hand. We make choices that affect the outcome of our life, and Saturn plays a major role in helping us to make wise choices. Saturn teaches responsibility and the wisdom of delaying personal gratification in order to accomplish a greater goal.
When Saturn travels through a sign, his lessons take on the qualities of that sign. Saturn just finished a 2-1/2 year trip through Scorpio, the sign of sexuality and power, during which revelations of sexual abuse came to the forefront of human consciousness to be discussed and (hopefully) resolved.
Sagittarius is the sign of air travel, foreign cultures, religion, the sharing of ideas through publishing and media. Sagittarius seeks to know the meaning of life and tends to be optimistic, breaking free of the boundaries that Saturn typically seeks to impose.
Saturn was last in Sagittarius between November 1985 and February 1988. Many significant events reveal the effect of Saturn through Sagittarius:
- The Challenger space shuttle (travel) disintegrated after launch, threatening this particular mission.
- The Single European Act was signed, formalizing (Saturn) the principles that later became the European Union, bringing the nations of Europe together (Sagittarius) under one umbrella. This was the first major revision of the Treaty of Rome which was signed during Saturn’s previous trip through Sagittarius.
- Mikhail Gorbachev began Perestroika to restructure (Saturn) the Soviet Union’s economic and political policies (Sagittarius).
- Ronald Reagan challenges Gorbachev (Saturn) to tear down the Berlin wall (Sagittarius).
- The stock market saw one of its biggest crashes in history (Black Monday) as the Dow dropped over 22%, correcting (Saturn) in an overinflated (Sagittarius) market. (The famous big crash in 1929 also occurred with Saturn in Sagittarius).
- Ronald Reagan’s seemingly endless popularity (Sagittarius) was challenged (Saturn) when he was charged in the Iran Contra affair.
- The Jim Bakker scandal erupted (Saturn) when the television minister (Sagittarius) was investigated (and later convicted) for fraud, rape and embezzling.
- Air travel will change significantly, but it will get worse before it gets better. Already airline customers have been feeling the squeeze (Saturn) as cabins get more and more crowded and this will likely continue until a crisis occurs that inspires change.
- Areas in which we tend to be overoptimistic (Sagittarius) will be challenged by Saturn. Because the stock market is based on confidence, this will lead to a rocky ride as waves of fear and optimism alternate to create a churning in the markets.
- Saturn will form a challenging square to Neptune that will continue through much of the cycle, beginning in January of 2015. I will be covering this in another article, but the pressure between Neptune’s desire to transcend the mundane details of life and Saturn’s pressure to adhere to certain rules will make it more necessary than ever to be realistic and practical during this period.
- On a personal level our belief systems (Sagittarius) will be challenged by Saturn, and this will likely extend into the areas of organized religion which will likely suffer as long-held beliefs are questioned and discarded.
- Additional disclosure (Saturn) and the revelation of long-held secrets of extra-terrestrial activity (Sagittarius) is possible.
- We will likely see the closure of colleges and universities (Sagittarius) as Saturn puts the squeeze on financial support.
- The media is always affected when Saturn is in Sagittarius and issues of net neutrality are likely to rise to the top of media concerns.
In our personal lives we can use the passage of Saturn through Sagittarius to create rituals and systems (Saturn) that work for us – daily routines and patterns that assist us in creating expansion and adventure (Sagittarius) in ways that support our lives in a practical (Saturn) way. This is a time to be practical in our financial planning and a time to work hard (Saturn) to achieve our dreams (Sagittarius).
Saturn is conjunct Pallas right now as I write this, granting us the opportunity to align with our higher mind (Pallas) and use that creative wisdom to generate a blueprint for our destiny that takes us beyond the boundaries we believe possible (Sagittarius) while keeping our feet firmly on the ground (Saturn).
On the other hand, the square to Neptune can serve to create disillusionment and failure if we attempt to fly too close to the Sun during this period.