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No pain, no gain in Saturn retrograde


Just when we thought we’d emerged from the tricky eclipses of recent months and an intense Mercury retrograde, we now find ourselves in the throes of Saturn retrograde. What are we dealing with?


Starting 4 June at 25 degrees of Aquarius and ending 23 October at 18 Aquarius, we’re all put through a Saturnian bootcamp on a foundational area of life where we have more maturing to do.


Saturn is the Lord of Karma, and in retrograde motion presents us with extra opportunities to address ours.


The purpose is to help us develop sturdier foundations, boundaries and commitments that serve for the long haul. We’re generally required to take on more responsibility, probably around core life issues like work and career paths, money and resource management, and boundaries with others.


The issues that arise are not new ones, as a planet that’s retrograding - or appears to be moving backwards - digs up the past to give us another shot at progressing what needs resolution. We might’ve thought we were done with a situation, and feel dismayed to find ourselves back through the wringer for a re-do or some finessing.


No nonsense Saturn rules boundaries, structure, work, persistence, rules and regulations, restrictions, and accountability, so these themes arise in some way. The bottom line is we’re pushed to find more sovereignty based on maturity, both on a collective level and in our personal lives.


Whichever house or life realm Saturn in Aquarius is traversing in our natal charts, alongside where our natal Saturn sits, are getting some tough love to forge the structures that support our more lofty dreams.


Collective impacts

As a transpersonal outer planet that moves slowly and is linked to social patterns and trends, Saturn retrograde in community-minded Aquarius is steering us toward what's best for the collective while honouring the individual within sensible reason.


We find ourselves pushed to face where we’re going as the human race, what community means and how we’re a part of it, and the rightful use of authority versus freedom.


On the macro scale, Saturn in Aquarius retrograde is shifting the collective consciousness in some way, perhaps relating to how authority and restrictions (Saturn) interface with the freedom of ‘the people’ (Aquarius).


Saturn is transiting Aquarius for about two and a half years, leaving in March 2023, so we’re well into this journey which began in 2020.


Of course that was the year the COVID situation arose. This continues to propel major societal change, unearthing issues and pushing us to find a way to serve the highest good of the collective and the individuals that compose it, in balance with the need for governance and authority. It’s all very Saturn in Aquarius!


Saturn means well


Saturn rewards hard work, first demanding to know the price we’re willing to pay in facing the music where needed.


He cuts things back to what’s essential, no frills or fluff. Although Saturn’s influence can feel heavy and despondent, the purpose is to show us the benefit of short term ‘suck it up’ discomfort that leads to long term security and success.


Think of a tough coach or guru who pushes to get more from us, and we’re left with a greater depth of empowerment because of it.


What happens?


Saturn brings situations, people and dynamics that give us an opportunity to make a new choice around an old situation.


We can find ourselves forced to readdress boundaries, or reassess the practical path we’re taking to evaluate if it’s aligned to the goals that really matter.


The themes of this retrograde began to rise in late February when Saturn first entered the terrain he’s now traversing. Also, as Mercury went direct the day or so before Saturn turned retrograde, the issues that rose through May might continue developing.


Stick with it

This retrograde offers the opportunity to sort ourselves out in some fundamental way. We may realise what we are learning, or need more reflection to see where Saturn is handing out lemons in hopes we’ll make lemonade.


Saturn believes in ‘no pain, no gain’, and that sometimes we must follow the rules, do the unglamorous hard yards, or go without in order to build a more secure future. It ranges from feeling pretty gruelling to extremely difficult.


Saturn retrograde demands we persevere in running up that hill, and if we do, he is ready to reward us with a satisfying depth of personal growth, greater maturity, and a more stable foundation that sets us up for seeing our dreams realised. Get ready for full steam ahead!

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