The Winter Solstice is upon us: the day when the Sun enters Capricorn in the tropical zodiac.
The chart for the Winter Solstice is often used to forecast the energies of the coming season (until the Spring Equinox at zero Aries). The conjunction of the Sun to Saturn at the Winter Solstice embeds this energy into the energy of the season, bringing our attention away from relaxation and pleasure to a more disciplined and focused approach. While the primary focus is on that which is real, a harmonious trine between Jupiter (expansion) and Neptune (creativity and inspiration) helps us to continue to grow our dreams while setting and realizing our concrete goals. Mars is tied in there too, in Scorpio where it is quite powerful, helping to fuel and energize our thoughts to action.
We also have the asteroids speaking out quite loudly in this chart, with Ceres (nurturing) aligned with the North Node to help support us on the journey to the future. Vesta, encouraging us to allow our own creativity to emerge from our heart’s fires, is aligned with Jupiter and tied into that lovely trine described above. Pallas, goddess of creative intelligence, aligns with Uranus, representing intuition and multidimensional awareness. Juno, the bestower of marriage and keeper of the nuclear family, aligns with the Moon to strengthen the bonds of those we live with and love. And last but not least, the Black Moon Lilith – the primal feminine power – aligns with Pluto, the planet of empowerment and transformation, forcing us to face any darkness in order to transform it into the light.
This is really an optimum combination of planetary energies! Seeds that you sow through thought and intention at this time of the Solstice will be carried through the next few months, so setting some time aside to plant these seeds now will serve you well.
The perception from earth of the movement of the planets through the symbolic constellations in the sky is one of the great tools that astrologers use to forecast the energies through which we live our life. These energies operate on the macrocosmic level – everyone on the planet is affected to one degree or another by the movement of the Moon, or any of the planets, through the zodiacal signs. On the microcosmic personal level, we are especially affected if the transiting planets in the sky trigger something in our own astrological chart.
Saturn is the outermost of the personal planets – the planets that are visible to the naked eye and which represent an aspect of our personality. Saturn represents the impulse to achieve: to master the material world. He imposes restrictions and places limitations on the goals and dreams that Jupiter has planted in the psyche. He has the tendency to engender feelings of insecurity, self-doubt and unworthiness. Traditionally Saturn was known as the Greater Malefic (the Lesser Malefic being Mars) because of the tendency towards negativism and melancholy. And probably because he ate his children in order to preserve his power which certainly didn’t help his image.
Still, while we can’t deny Saturn’s challenging qualities, his gifts are also great. In ancient Greece, Saturn was known as Kronos, Lord of Time, and under Saturn’s watchful eye we cannot deny that time is fleeting and death is before us making each moment more precious and not to be wasted. The tests and crises that Saturn often brings with him give us the strength and endurance to prevail and thrive. The depression that often comes with a prominent Saturn chart placement evolves into self-reliance and a love of solitude. The pressure to succeed and fear of failure becomes, with a great deal of effort, success in the material world with the accompanying wealth and prestige.
The zodiacal sign of Capricorn shares Saturn’s love of success and achievement. Like the mountain goat with which it is sometimes associated, Capricorn relentlessly climbs the mountain of its goals, putting personal emotions and other frivolities aside, in order to ascend to the summit and enjoy the view from the top. Capricorn’s traditional symbol is the “goat fish” – a hybrid creature with the body of a goat and the tail of a sea serpent, combining what we now call “emotional intelligence” of water with the practical ability to achieve one’s goals symbolized by the goat. Capricorn’s realm includes structures of all kinds – physical, political, and social – and the need to preserve these structures in order to preserve the fabric of human life. Capricorn lacks the desire to take risks or engage in carefree exploration such as Sagittarius does.
Saturn is said to be in its domicile in Capricorn – Saturn is at its most effective and, we might say, happiest when allowed to operate freely in the material and practical world of form and structure. Saturn’s passage through the signs creates tests and obstacles in the matters of that sign. Saturn’s movement through Sagittarius (sign of ideology and belief as well as foreign cultures) over the last two years have challenged our ideas on issues such as immigration and religion. Saturn’s focus in Capricorn now shifts to the political structures themselves as well as other social structures such as marriage, religious organizations.
Saturn’s passage through Capricorn can provide a great support to our ventures in the physical world as long as we apply good Saturn principles of proper planning and solid strategy. Over the next two years, dreams and fantasies with no basis, in reality, will not be supported. This is not a time to believe that positive thinking is enough to carry you through to your goals – Saturn’s reward comes through hard work, discipline and structured planning.
Those of us with planets in the cardinal signs (Aries, Libra, Cancer and of course Capricorn) will be most affected by Saturn’s trip through Capricorn as Saturn triggers those planets. This may mean success in business ventures, and it also can suggest hardships or an overload of responsibility. Much of how you are personally affected will be determined both by the other dynamics of your own personal chart and the choices that you make under the Saturn influence. If Saturn is in Capricorn in your own chart, you will be having a Saturn Return sometime during this period. An excellent time to consult an astrologer!
Here are some ways you can get the most out of this Saturn cycle: