Saturn Goes Retrograde: What’s Your Unavoidable Responsibility?

“Wake up!” says Saturn.  “I gave you a chance to see your responsibility recently.  Now I’m telling you again:  this is a time of testing.”

Today is a Pivotal Day
When a planet turns retrograde it makes a pivot in the sky and also creates a metaphorically “pivotal” experience for human beings.

Today, that planet is Saturn.  It’s as if Saturn is telling us, “You can’t go on avoiding responsibility forever.  Today I’m delivering a wake-up call.”  If Saturn is touching a planet in your chart this year, this message is for you and it will have very specific meaning, depending on what planet that is.  That planet, and the part of you it represents, is being asked to take responsibility.  Today is the peak of possibility of Saturn’s wake-up call, but it could happen anytime within 5 days surrounding today.

Initiation Leading to an Inner Journey
Sometime between now and the beginning of last October Saturn showed us an area of life in which we need to take more responsibility.  What he delivered was an initiation and it was our first chance to catch a clue about the changes coming.  That clue may have been obvious or it may have been subtle, but we’ve been shown a place in our life that would benefit from sustained hard work and a more serious attitude.

Did we notice?  It’s human to go into denial after a clue is delivered.  During the autumn we may have said to ourselves, “Maybe I don’t have to do anything about this.  Maybe it was just a one-time thing.  Maybe I can just move on.  Maybe I can get away without paying attention to this.”

Or maybe not.  Today Saturn turns up the volume and gives us a reminder.  “That responsibility you need to take?” he says, “You’d better figure it out and start doing it.”  This is a wake-up call.  Today, Saturn’s retrograde journey begins and with it begins our journey inward to discover what responsibility we need to take and how it will benefit us to do so.  Saturn’s retrograde journey lasts until the day it turns direct, which is May 30, 2010.

Where must we take responsibility?
The sign Saturn begins its backwards journey in matters, as well as the sign it moves backward into.  Saturn has been in Virgo for the last 2¼  years.  In 2010 it moves forward into Libra.  Its retrograde journey takes it back into Virgo for a few brief months before making the commitment to forward motion into Libra.

Virgo represents the phase of life in which we become a full adult.  In Virgo we assume adult status, enter the workforce and groom ourselves for life as a grown-up.  Libra, falling next in zodiacal order, represents relationship.  In Libra occurs the encounter with the Other, the Beloved.  In Libra we meet our match.

But before we move on to the domain of relationships, Saturn is telling us we need to get our house in order as individuals.  He tells us this by moving back into Virgo for a brief time before then moving forward into Libra.  This will be a period of grooming, cleaning, perfecting.  If you have organized things and structured your health or personal habits over the last 2 years, this is your last chance to complete that process before Saturn shifts out of Virgo’s perfection realm into Libra’s relating realm.  Virgo is a period of preparation to meet the Beloved, a period of finding oneself before entering into relationship with another in Libra.  It is that last moment you spend in front of the mirror before leaving the house.  “Is everything in order?” Saturn wants to know.  The next few months are your last chance (for many years to come) to make it so.

Is this story your story?
If this resonates for you, it may be that you are personally touched by this transit.  Saturn may be triggering a planet in your own chart, thus bringing these themes up for you.  This year Saturn is covering the space between 27 degrees Virgo and 4 degrees Libra.  If there is anything in your chart in 27, 28 or 29 degrees of Virgo, Gemini, Sagittarius or Pisces, you will feel this.  Also if you have anything in 0, 1, 2, 3, or 4 degrees of Libra, Capricorn, Aries or Cancer, you will feel this.  And knowing it can explain feelings you may be having of guilt, seriousness, obligation, duty or feeling trapped or limited.  Saturn may be trying to tell you something important, and if you listen, your discomfort will ease and a clear path to action can open up before you.

What area of your life is being affected?
Good question.  It will have to do with the planet in your chart that’s being triggered by Saturn.  If it’s Mercury, Saturn is asking you to sharpen, hone and focus your mind, so this could be the right time for studying hard.  If it’s Venus or Juno, Saturn is testing your relationships for strength and resilience.  If it’s Jupiter, your hope and faith are being tested.  But whatever it is, that feeling of heaviness, oppression, limitation and the pressure to take committed action are present.  That’s Saturn.  He’s nobody’s favorite planet, but because he lives in each of us, the job gets done.

Want to know more about how this Saturn transit affects your life?
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About Jamie

Jamie has been practicing astrology in the Bay Area since 1992 and teaching since 1997. She is currently certified at NCGR Level 3. She specializes in feminine archetypes and a positive, empowering approach. Jamie enjoys working with individuals, couples, and families to improve the quality of their lives and expand each person’s choices.