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Saturn is the ruler of Capricorn, cardinal earth, and shares rulership of Aquarius, fixed air, with Uranus. Saturn is exalted in Libra, wherein it becomes gentler and more merciful, for of itself Saturn is the planet of strict justice that demands full payment for all that it bestows. It is the planet of the concrete and practical, and gives a vivid sense of material values and what are called hard facts. When strong it gives most of the virtues of what may be called the “self-help” type, such as patience, perseverance, hard work, thrift, concentration, solidity and reliability.

The true Saturnian usually believes that nothing can be won without hard work, and he has both the virtues and the vices of this belief. It is the planet of real worth, as apart from show and make-believe, and gives to all things their permanent and lasting qualities. Its action is slow, thorough and inevitable.
Saturn wants stability, loyalty, restraint and decently old-fashioned but non-hypocritical honour. Saturn protects the self by surrounding it with order. The Saturnine cynic can on occasions be both wise and witty, and the traditional sadness of the clown or “funny man” is usually Saturnine.

Saturn energy does not represent truth or absolute reality. It represents a reality that is created socially, operates within a social universe, and has its greatest effects upon an individual in a socially defined context.

It is not pleasant when reaching out to grasp something to be told it is not attainable. It is not pleasant to encounter one’s limitations the first time (although it is helpful to know them and live according to them without resistance). Nor is it pleasant to encounter the natural consequences of one’s mistakes.

These well-known difficulties with Saturn energy result from not understanding either one’s limitations or the rules of the game. While Saturn permits and even strengthens certain aspects of personal reality, such reality cannot come into conflict with social, collective, or consensus reality. When it does the rules of collective reality work with an almost automatic quality, such that one seems to be only suffering the consequences of one’s actions. From this come the ideas that Saturn brings what one deserves, or that Saturn is the lord of Karma. Although often painful, it is such situations that cause one to mature.

Every time we do what is untrue to our nature, acting not from a real necessity but rather to fulfil what others may expect of us, we commit a crime against ourselves that is peculiarly Saturnine.

As the planetary embodiment of the forces that shape our lives and give them form in the context of a social universe, Saturn is strongly connected to the symbolism of the father.

A strong Saturn often indicates a particularly powerful experience of the father principle (though not necessarily the biological father). The father principle is experienced in all situations that call for learning a discipline, growing into a social role, or learning the rules. School is Saturnine. So are teachers and guide figures, and often one’s boss or employer.

Many of the major crises of adulthood are represented at least in part by Saturn transits. These are times when one has to make decisions and pass up one path in favour of another. In this way Saturn energies actualise our lives and at the same time limit future possibilities.

Another Saturnian principle is control and this too is often attributable to fear, for when we are frightened we attempt to control whatever is going on. We also want things to be clearly defined. When Saturn touches a planet we do tend to crave those things that that planet represents. With the Sun we may crave recognition, with the Moon nurturance, a home and family; with Venus, love and affection, and so on.

The purpose of all this denial and restriction is often to test the validity of what we are doing or what we think we want. Saturn contacts generally get better as an individual gets older.

sun | moon | jupiter | mars | saturn | venus | neptune | uranus | pluto | mercury

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