Nyelv választó

Login Form

 

THE CYCLES OF SATURN AND URANUS

 

Saturn and Uranus represent mutually exclusive concepts in astrology. It is always interesting to look at the myths describing the planets because they highlight the archetypes they represent. In the beginning, Gaia (Mother Earth) emerged from chaos and created a son, Uranos (the Sky God). With him she mated and as a result they had lots of ugly offspring: the hundred-handed giants, the one-eyed Cyclopes, and the Titans. Uranus kept seeking out Gaia at nights to mate with her, but he was so disgusted with the ugliness of their offspring that he banished them to the darkness of the inner caves of the Earth (Gaia herself) and never let them out into the light.

 

 

Gaia's burdens got so heavy that she decided to do something about it. She turned to her youngest son, Cronos (Time), for help. When that night Uranus visited Gaia and hungrily fell on top of her Cronos grabbed his genitals and castrated him with a flint sickle, then he threw them into the sea. Aphrodite, the Goddess of Love, sprang from the foam that gathered around the genitals of Uranus, and thus - in his shame and humiliation - Uranus finally managed to create the perfect offspring he had longed for so much.

 

 

Aphrodite, however, was not the only one to emerge as a result of Cronos's deed: a few drops of blood flowing from the wound fell upon Mother Earth, who bore the Three Erinnyes (the Furies, who avenge crimes of parricide and perjury). What a beautiful metaphor.... Cronos's deed, of course, is technically not parricide - but in effect it is exactly that. The castration of a God makes him a no-God: powerless and useless. Cronos (Saturn) is Uranus's son as well as his destroyer. He stands for order and time as opposed to chaos. In this sense, his takeover represents the moment when time is born, when chaos is replaced by order.

 

 

Do we like it? Not always... but we all have to admit that both time and order seem to be useful and even necessary in life here on Earth. We need to build solid foundations, we need to accept frameworks, authorities, rules, and the law....

Now do we, really?

This is precisely the question we ask ourselves at a Uranus transit. Saturn, the outermost planet visible by the naked eye, has always been associated with time, boundaries, burdens, hard labor, education, and physical death: in short, both the limits and the foundations of human existence here on Earth as it was seen and experienced by ancient and medieval man. Uranus, which was spotted after the invention of the telescope, denotes the disruption of Saturn's boundaries: rapid changes, anarchy, revolt, the urge and dash for freedom. If we look at these concepts we must realize that they represent, in effect, a setback from the "civilized" rigidity of order and time to a more ancient form of existence: chaos and disorder. Uranus is the planet that breaks up the concepts that Saturn represents, and it often does that with surprising speed, wreaking havoc in its wake.

Saturn is the Teacher, Uranus is the Awakener in our life. The cycles of Saturn represent hard lessons that need to be mastered, while Uranus urges us to break free of grueling obligations. Since Saturn takes approximately 29 and a half years to reach the natal position, its challenging aspects usually happen every seven years. Until we complete our first cycle and reach the so-called Saturn return at about the age of 30, the squares and the opposition often denote harsh struggles during childhood and youth. The second cycle is generally easier if we learn those lessons - and if we also learn how to curb and channel disruptive Uranian energies. It takes Uranus 84 years to reach the natal position, thus every seven years or so we may complete a minor or major Uranus aspect, which denotes times when minor or major changes are brought into our lives.

 

 

Saturn's first square generally happens around the age of 7. In Hungary, children go to primary school only when they have turned 6, never before that. Hungarian language is easy to spell because its written form is almost completely following sound, thus reading and writing can be learned within 4 months. Children here are usually proud to start school and look forward to the experience with a lot of expectation. The first Saturn square corresponds with the time when their hopes may be crushed a bit, when it dawns on them that school is not just fun but it is, in fact, a lot of hard work. Hungarian schools are not exactly famous for their playfulness and ease; they are, unfortunately, of the Prussian tradition.

The opposition occurs between the ages 14 - 15, and denotes the time of the teenage revolt. While squares in transit are usually experienced as new situations that we need to address and get adjusted to, oppositions are more like an attack or a threat. Teenagers rebel against parental and teacher authority with great vehemence. They hate practically everything associated with authority: homework, house work, rules, obligations, curfew, and haircuts. But above all, they hate to obey with passion. These are hard times for both kids and parents, but provide very necessary experiences in detachment and growing up.

The second square happens around the age of 21 and is generally less traumatic than either the first square or the opposition. It may denote a harder term at university with lots of important exams; problems with a love affair; a clash with the boss at work; or again it may indicate a time with parental problems or misunderstandings. The house position of both the natal and the transiting planet may provide a hint at the potential spheres of life that are affected. In any case, by then we have either reached some sort of understanding of authority and may have even developed tolerance towards it, or the experience provides the necessary impact to learn it; it is generally a type of reality check.

The Saturn return at the age 29-30 is truly an important period in everybody's life. This is the moment most people describe as finally "growing up," accepting the responsibilities of adulthood and leaving behind the innocence of childhood. Important and heavy events may denote this drastic change: the death of a parent; a life threatening disease or accident; getting married; moving into the first home; accepting a job with a lot of responsibilities; the birth of a child or the loss of a pregnancy, just to name a few. The natal house position of Saturn and the sign it is in will always hint at the possible life spheres that will be affected.

The first square of the second Saturn cycle occurs around the age of 35 - 36. There is often a significant death or illness occurring at that time, especially because it frequently corresponds with the first Uranus quincunx. It is interesting to note that in the case of my generation it corresponds with the first Pluto square, adding the need for complete transformation to the picture, often making it extremely painful and deeply life altering on many levels.

 

 

The cycles of Uranus are also accentuated every seven years, although the correlation may not be so exact in time as a result of orbit irregularities and retrograde motion. Uranus needs 84 years to complete a full round, so we do not get a hard aspect as often as in the case of Saturn, either. The first semi-sextile and sextile at around ages 7 and 14 may herald childhood and teenage rebellion, but since they are a minor and a flowing aspect respectively, they generally do not bring any tasks to solve. Instead, they may add the flavor of freedom and a sense of "I couldn't care less" attitude to the hard aspects of Saturn occurring simultaneously or close by.

 

The first Uranus square at the age of 21 may present a different story since it corresponds with the second Saturn square. Impacts vary, depending on house positions involved and on the time sequence the squares occur. If the Saturn square happens first, it may bring hardships and lessons to learn, after which the Uranus square may offset completely or ease out the situation. However, more often than not it causes some crisis and as a result some major changes that are hard to get adjusted to. If the Uranus square comes first, it may correspond with strong freedom urges and the desire to change the life course, like leaving the family home, getting out of college, even leaving the country for some adventure. The Saturn square that follows may act as a sudden cold shower and a painful necessity to accept one's limitations.

 

The first Uranus trine usually occurs before the Saturn return (around age 28) and brings great changes in the true sense of the word. Since the aspect is a trine we are very eager and willing to make the necessary adjustments in order to better our lives. I have often noticed a sense of invincibility when this aspect occurs. By that age people usually have their own income (whether or not this provides for them a comfortable living is another questions), and they have developed their own set of value system as well. Now they are ready to get rid of anyone and anything that they feel is pulling them back. The Saturn return occurring soon afterwards may again act as a cold shower, completing the process of the shift from youth to adulthood.

 

The Uranus opposition denotes a time that is often labeled as the "midlife crisis". It occurs around the age of 40, although it can come as early as 38 or as late as 45. The generation born before WW1 experienced it much later in life (quite close to their second Saturn opposition) than the one born in the second half of the 20th century, which I find very symbolical of the age and times corresponding with these generations. In any case, there is an extremely strong urge to change the life course and to get rid of all the factors that feel restrictive or hindering in any way. The result is often a complete reorientation: leaving the family behind for a new exciting relationship, changing jobs, moving from the old home into a new one that suits new goals better. I often noticed that men and women experience this aspect differently, which is so typical of the positive - negative polarity. Men tend to act while women tend to suffer the consequences. Men who live in a marriage usually seek out a much younger relationship at this time, while women very often only stand by and endure the whole process.

 

As an astrologer I think it is extremely important for me to point out that this does not need to happen like that. I try to teach women that they, too, can change their life course actively by finding a new interest, or even a new relationship if this is what they desire. Women are often so lost when this opposition occurs because they have to think about their children and their home. Society does not help, either, because it still acts with double standards: men have the right to cheat as much as they want while women, by all means, should stay within the existing marriage; keep it sacred and intact - even though it may be completely unsuitable, dissatisfying, empty, and dead.

 

If we have managed to make the necessary changes wisely at our Uranus opposition, the corresponding Saturn opposition occurring not long afterwards will simply strengthen and solidify the new positions. If, however, we have acted in haste and just for the sake of rebellion, then the Saturn aspect can bring a time of serious, often extremely painful, reality check. It may turn out that the changes made earlier were unwise, too abrupt, too fundamental... and the problem is: there may be no turning back. I have seen it many times that the husband wants to go back to his original wife... but by then she may not be ready for that.

 

Naturally, changes in personal relationships are by no means the only result of the Uranus opposition, but they are by far the most important (and most painful) ones. Uranus and Saturn, father and son, weave a life tale that is interwoven and inseparable. One teaches freedom and originality, the other strict rules and acceptance. Both are important, neither is enough by itself. We need to learn a balance between the two through our life cycles provided by them. I find it deeply symbolic that our age, the Age of Aquarius, has both planets as its rulers: Saturn as the old, and Uranus as the new.