Originally published on AstroGeek and Heretical Oracles under the pen name Artemis.
Effective date- March 25, 2016
“When the disciple
knows Saturn as the God
who offers opportunity
and does not only
feel him to be Deity
who brings disaster,
then he is on the path
of discipleship in truth
and in deed
and not just
theoretically.” – Alice A Bailey, Esoteric Astrology
Saturn, Lord of Karma, is going retrograde. This is the first of many retrogrades to come, guys. Pretty much all of the planets will be moving backwards soon, and it’s going to feel like a spinning vortex. The sun entering Aries recently brought us back into the rulership of Martian war energy (as Mars is the ruler of the ram). And right in the beginning of all of this blood god, we have father time deciding to hit rewind. Saturn goes retrograde on March 25, which is 2 days after the full moon eclipse in Libra, and he is the first triggered event after the eclipses. Saturn moves backward from March 23 through August 13, dragging along a heavier than usual dose of karma.
The first 7 planets can be looked at as the first octave in the solar song, leaving Uranus to naturally be the blasting off into a new octave and new world entirely. The outer planets are far more concerned with all of us as a collective than they are with individual, micro issues. They are in charge of a different layer of our consciousness; the collective.
As an Aquarius, I have an intimate relationship with this old devil of a planet. You see, Aquarians have two dads, Saturn and Uranus, and they both teach very different lessons. One father has traditionally been called the great malefic (Mars is the lesser malefic). A malefic in astrology is a planet that is traditionally thought of as “miss-fortunate.” Saturn represents restriction, the constructs of reality, and hard truths. Our other father, Uranus, has been called the God of Chaos and freedom. How the hell does Aquarius justify being ruled by such different energies? The realization comes when you merge dualities in the planet Saturn. In order to blast off into freedom, one must first learn their limitations. A kite cannot fly without restriction, and freedom is what you do with what you have. Aquarius is a very individualistic sign, but somehow also represents the collective. This is because one must maintain the paradoxical idea of individuality in the collective in order for it to even work. Without a hub, there is no wheel.
And the wheel of time turns, my friends, but now in the other direction. “So, what the fuck does this retrograde mean for us, Artemis?” Ok, ok, patience! This is something we will be learning a great deal the coming 4 and a half months.
Saturn sits right on the edge of this world. As the last of it’s octave, it both defines what came before it and prepares us for a chaotic re-birthing. When Saturn goes retrograde, we turn inward and examine all of the decisions of our past. Unfinished business will emerge like crazy, and you have to take care of it now or you will not make it to the next cycle. Because the focus of mind will turn toward the past, so will the types of manifestations that happen in our life. When we focus on the patterns of the past, they emerge as new lessons in our present. What vibrational level have we been existing at? What options remain for us to choose from because of the choices we have made in the past?
Like a record, a planet spinning backward will show us the hidden message buried inside of the structure. What demonic chants have been inhabiting your subconscious? It’s time to root them out and devour them.
Saturn is relentless and he is going to test us. Grab the weapons Aries has to offer, punks, because we are officially entering this battlefield.
7 of Cups represents all of the illusions set before us; all of the paths we BELIEVE we have available to us. Mesmerized by the glowing cups before him, the man in this card can’t seem to choose between all of the options he is presented with. The secret to this card is that all of his choices are a part of the maya / illusion. Unfortunately for him (and thus you, sorry), this card being crossed by the King of Pentacles means we are going to have to have to choose the path mastery over our material realm. Represented by the heavy element of lead, Saturn is the master of the material world. He is all things solidifying. He is the ultimate meaning – the ultimate construct. The temptations before us are empty of true Saturnian meaning. Saturn is rewinding, slowing down time, and wrecking our lives to show us what we really need in order to reach our higher selves. If you fight back, he will only suffocate you further. You must act on the gnosis he brings.
The King of Pentacles is only the master of his environment because he KNOWS his environment. He knows how much yield he will need to feed his people. He knows how much material he needs to combine to construct his kingdom. He is the cerebral quality behind earth; the structure needed in order to gain mastery of the elements. Coupled with the rune Dagaz, he is telling us that this mastery wont come over night. Saturn is slow and steady, gradual like the coming of the dawn. If you don’t have a steel will, you are going to get crushed under the heavy weight of this transit.
The rune Dagaz also describes the point of melding between polarities. Forget what you believe about the good and the bad. They merge, they play, they exist only because someone put up a wall of restriction. Saturn going retrograde now puts the responsibility in our hands. Where are you going to put up your new boundaries? Check your architectural plans, but keep in mind Saturn’s karmic lesson. Wherever you decide to lay those boundaries, they will have immense repercussions in your future. Choose wisely. Be still and meditate. But also remember, in the end, Saturn is all about Capricornian action as well. You must choose to build something or you will be devoured. Once the retrograde ends and Saturn swoops back into forward drive, he will crush you if your plans are not well meditated.
The rune Dagaz, oddly enough, also looks like an hourglass – representing Father Time quite nicely. Tic toc, our time has finally come. It seems the countdown for Tower Year is finally beginning on the precipice of the equinox. There is so much balance symbolism coming at us right now; from the full moon Libra, eclipse, equinox, and now this Dagaz representation of the Saturnian retrograde.
On to the final piece of the puzzle; the rune Eihwaz. There is a fire inside all of us; a storm. Inside, we are empty, like a cup waiting to be filled. Outside our empty core is the restrictive form. As a storm progresses, the choice of it’s landing becomes ever more clear and the breadth of it’s form ever more sturdy. This is the evolution of our “self.” We are born into this world with many more options than we have at our present. Sometimes the storm may change course. This retrograde represents one of those times. You have been removed from your ability to see all the layers of your reality for far too long. You are finally going to get some elation and clarity, and you are going to be able to pick which current you want to dive into. Eihwaz represents the moment when you lose the fear of death, the scythe carrier. And who else carries a scythe and represents death itself? Saturn. For now, we have a reprieve from Papa. How will you use the creative fire inside of you to smith your future?
Saturn rules Aquarius because Aquarius knows how to navigate the various currents of humanity. He knows that no current is the end all be all structure of the world, and there are many ways for people on two different pathways to communicate. There are many arrangements of form. As the representative of the circulatory system and connecting pathways, Aquarius understands the impulse of rivers to move toward larger bodies of water. Deep down, we are all born knowing our destiny. We are all compelled to it like gravity. It is confused and muddled by the illusion we are born into; false structures that will fall away in time. You can see the rot in the world around you. Shine your light, remove the unnecessary barriers you have set that restrict you from getting to where you need to go, and get on with it before some asshole builds a dam around you and keeps you from your destiny.