Saturn turns direct
This time last week I was writing the blog as Mars was turning direct, the week before it was Mercury turning direct and this week it’s Saturn’s turn. This is hugely important because it means that we’ll then have all the “personal” planets (Mercury, Venus, Mars, Jupiter and Saturn) moving in the right direction, and we’ll have a month to enjoy this before Venus turns retrograde at the beginning of October. More about Saturn in a minute…
Firstly this turning point is heralded by and married to a flurry of Mercury activity which gets the week off to a busy start. For some this might even be rather manic! Certainly, if you want to get the best out of this week in terms of work, productivity and effectiveness the golden key is to think ahead and get organized. Don’t allow yourself to be side-tracked until you’re on top of your own stuff. At a personal level it’s a time for boundaries – firm ones. And you’ll get through testing points in any relationship – parents, partner, lover, children – if you think self-respect and tough love.
There are now all sorts of things bubbling up to the surface. Yesterday (Sunday) Mercury came “out of shadow”, which means that he returned to the degree at which he turned retrograde – 23 degrees of Leo. Some astrologers make a big deal out of this moment although I can’t say that I have noticed it to be hugely significant. However, it’s worth noting, and particularly if you have planets or angles at or close to 23 Leo. More importantly this moment signifies that Mercury is back up to full speed so from now on things could move quickly. Any Mercurial issue – i.e. anything under the communication umbrella, such as talking, writing, connection, understanding, agreements, information, scheduling, decisions and so on – all get an extra energy boost and big ticks.
This is further underlined by the fact that Mercury’s first aspect after coming out of shadow, and the last one before changing sign, is a harmonious one to Venus –
Monday 3 September
- Mercury 25 Leo sextile Venus 25 Libra 13.59
Thursday 6 September
- Mercury ingress Virgo 03.40
The last time Mercury was in sextile to Venus was on 18 August when they were at 11 degrees Leo/Libra, less than 24 hours before Mercury turned direct, so for some there’ll be more information, results or outcomes for any matter that was important at that time. Mercury picking up speed since turning direct means that he’s now caught up with Venus again to repeat the aspect.
At a universal level note that this is the stuff of closure, a cycle coming to a finale and on a positive note. Venus is strong in her own sign of Libra and her main issues are love and money, so any kind of romantic or financial exchanges, agreements or deals go to the top of the “expected events” list.
Mercury’s change of sign is full of promise in itself, entering one of his own signs of Virgo within a few days of emerging from shadow and aligning with Venus. In fact, he doesn’t really get more powerful than that. Along with the fact that Mars is now back on track this really is a fantastic week to get motoring and list ticking. It doesn’t matter what’s on the list, “just do it” is the motto to follow.
He’s my “take” on Mercury in Virgo as a natal placing, from Be Your Own Astrologer, which will give you a flavour of this combination
Mercury in Virgo
Most people associate Mercury with Gemini, his masculine sign, but here is his lesser known strength, the feminine earth sign of diligent Virgo. The planet of the mind in the sign of discrimination makes for an awesome combination – insightful, precise and observant. These individuals put two and two together and always make four. If something doesn’t add up they want to know why and they won’t rest until they find out. They would never be so brash as to ask direct or impertinent questions but the polite smile masks a brain that is working at the speed of sound. Nothing escapes their attention and their power of analysis is second to none.
Speech tends to be measured, economical – why use fifty words when you can use five – but not necessarily slow. Yes, these Mercury people can be pedantic, nit picking perfectionists and guilty of snap judgments, but there is also a quick understanding. Typically these individuals are highly articulate and deeply interested in the finer details. This is a wonderful placing for a serious novelist or researcher.
The link to Virgo’s domain of health also often shows in vocation. One of my Mercury in Virgo clients is a top speech therapist. The work goes far beyond diagnosing and treating the actual speech problems themselves, extending into analyzing the family dynamics and having the tact and professional acumen to reveal where a child’s verbal difficulties are nearly always linked to their parenting and environment. It is symbolic perfection to see how this is captured by Mercury in Virgo Colin Firth in The King’s Speech.
The Mercury – Saturn Double Act
Mercury continues to dominate the picture throughout the week as he repeats a pattern that was made on 25 August – which was when the Sun moved into Virgo and then aligned with Saturn and Uranus both in the other earth signs. Mercury is now doing exactly the same thing. This creates an Aspect Pattern called a Grand Trine – if you “join the dots” of the three planets you would find an equilateral triangle as they are all in the same element (Earth) and therefore are all four signs or 120 degrees apart.
This time the pattern is even stronger as it’s being created by a “dignified” Mercury in Virgo and as Saturn (also dignified being in his own sign) is turning direct. Here’s the sequence –
Thursday 6 September
- Saturn turns direct 2 Capricorn 03.40
Friday 7 September
- Mercury 2 Virgo trine Uranus 2 Taurus 08.42
- Mercury 2 Virgo trine Saturn 2 Capricorn 12.10
- Sun 15 Virgo opposite Neptune 15 Pisces 19.28
So all things Saturnian are finally on the move. It’s been a long time coming as Saturn arrived in Capricorn just before last Christmas but then turned retrograde at 9 degrees of that sign in April. Echoes of Mars who entered Aquarius (16 May) but then turned retrograde also at 9 degrees. If you have any planets or angles at 9 degrees of any sign then this long waiting game will have been especially trying, characterized by such things as hard work for little reward, matters being stuck or seemingly irresolvable, frustration, time wasting, lack of results and so on.
What does Saturn rule?
Things now on the move include all matters pertaining to work, career, professional moves of all kinds, personal authority, commitment, assumption of a significant duty or responsibility. Saturn signifies the qualities needed to reach our goals – not just fight (Mars) or luck/opportunity (Jupiter), but hard work, discipline, control, patience and perseverance. Also watch out for the hallmarks of a new seriousness, realism or respect.
The Physical Body
Saturn rules the teeth and bones, especially the knees – make that dental appointment or see your osteopath – and is also the “stone maker”. Saturn rules the skin too and all “hardening” conditions like rheumatoid arthritis, or difficult to treat conditions like eczema or psoriasis. So it’s a promising time to seek treatment, especially with a respected practitioner or anyone who comes highly recommended.
At a more general level this Grand Trine in the element of Earth, involving Mercury and Saturn at their strongest, does feel enormously productive and helpful. Wherever we need to “get our act together” it should be easier to find the necessary resources and get solid results. However to ignore Uranus in the mix would be to take your eye off the ball, as he is the opposite principle to Saturn in every respect. Saturn loves regulations, Uranus likes to throw the rule book out of the window and move the goal posts. He’s the spoke in the wheel, the unexpected, the thing that catches you out. Don’t freak out – just think on your feet.
Note that the sequence coincides with the Sun lining up opposite Neptune. This is also textbook for some confusion, heightened emotional sensitivity or manipulative behavior. Don’t fall for sob stories or allow yourself to be steered off track through any kind of emotional blackmail. Try not to do anything based on feelings of guilt.
The Love Planets
The coming weekend brings another finale –
Saturday 8 September
- Venus 29 Libra square Mars 29 Capricorn
So again, as with the Mercury – Venus aspect at the beginning of the week, we have a final aspect being made before changes of sign, Venus moving into Scorpio this weekend and Mars re-entering Aquarius in the early hours of next Tuesday. Squares are conflict, they indicate areas of dispute and incompatibility. If you’re in a dead end relationship you’ll now see how to move on. If you’re going through a rocky patch or if a particular issue is causing friction you’ll need to find workable compromises and accept that this is probably as good as it gets for now!
Venus’ change of sign is especially important as this is one of her signs of “detriment” (Scorpio being traditionally ruled by Mars, and therefore not an easy sign for the partner planet of Venus) and also because she’s just starting to slow down in readiness for turning retrograde in a month’s time (5 October) and won’t turn direct again until mid November. This ingress also coincides with the New Moon –
Sunday 9 September
- Venus ingress Scorpio 10.26
- New Moon 17 Virgo 19.03
The New Moon in the earthy sign of Virgo dovetails with all the symbolism already mentioned for Mercury and Saturn moving on. New Moons are new brooms that sweep clean and the arrival of opportunities. Clock whatever presents itself as a fresh start or a welcome change.
I’ll be talking a lot more about the Venus – Scorpio combination in the coming weeks, and this will also be the subject of my talk in London on the evening of Wednesday 17 October, so do get in touch if you’d like to find out more about this or the workshops on 19 and 21 October.