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Highlights for March 16-22, 2020: Tests, Fallout, and a Bold Future

Tests, Fallout, and a Bold Future

Dates and times are given for U.S. Pacific Time zone. Click them to see the date and time where you are.

An unhealthy preoccupation

As the world grinds to a halt, we find ourselves in one of those moments when what I do for a living seems irrelevant. Cynics and skeptics, of course, would claim that it is always irrelevant; but I know that isn’t true. The feedback I receive from readers that the weekly column and New/Full Moon essays are helpful, that the sessions we do together are illuminating, that the podcast is enjoyable, all tell me there is an important place in the world for thoughtful, reflective, and entertaining work that helps you better understand yourself and your world.

That said, it’s very hard to for me settle down and focus right now. I imagine many of you feel likewise. The world is gripped by fear, uncertainty, and an unhealthy preoccupation with toilet paper.

Welcome to the ever-evolving manifestation of the Saturn/Pluto conjunction! As Mars begins his March across Jupiter, Saturn, and Pluto in Capricorn like Sherman headed for the sea, the fuse lit back in January at the conjunction (about the time this virus first appeared in China) is catching fire.

Over the past few days, my inbox has filled with a steady stream of messages about cancelled events, closures of public spaces, and reminders that everyone I’ve ever done business with in my life – from our car dealership to a hotel we stayed at in the U.K. seven years ago – is working day and night to protect me from the unlikely event of getting sick on their watch.

There are plenty of noteworthy astrological events this week. At a different moment, I’d examine each of them in some lingering detail. Mercury reentering Pisces (March 16, 00:42 am PDT), on the home stretch of a Pisces/retrograde journey that began back on February 3; Mars conjoining Jupiter in a heroic conjunction at the same degree as the Saturn/Pluto conjunction in January (March 20, 4:34 am PDT); Mars joining Pluto in the dark beginning of a new cycle (March 22, 8:08 pm PDT); a Last Quarter Moon in Sagittarius (March 16, 2:34 am PDT). Jen and I actually cover these in some detail in the latest episode of the Big Sky Astrology podcast, and you can listen here or read the transcript.

Here, I’ll give what energy and focus I have on two rather major bits of astrological news: the Aries Equinox and Saturn entering Aquarius.

Valor and obstacles

The Vernal Equinox (in the Northern Hemisphere; Autumnal Equinox for our Southern Hemisphere friends), when the Sun enters Aries (March 19, 8:49 pm PDT), marks the beginning of spring and should, by rights, sound a starting bell for an energetic new year. Aries likes nothing more than to try something new and hit the ground running. Instead, it appears the groundhog was wrong and we’ll be burrowed deep in our homes for six more weeks of winter.

Mundane astrologers, who study world events, use the chart for the Aries ingress (the moment the Sun enters Aries) to predict global developments for the year ahead. By casting the chart for a nation’s capital city, they look for clues to how a particular country will be affected. This isn’t my field of expertise; however, it’s not surprising under the circumstances to see the Sun in the sheltering 4th house of the ingress chart and a stellium of heavy, pessimistic Capricorn planets straddling the houses of finance and communication.

But my astrology is focused on individuals; so what about you? The Sun’s degree at the Aries ingress is always at 0.00 Aries and always in the same area of your chart; the house that it falls in shows where you always tend to exhibit pioneering, indomitable qualities and strong initiative. Perhaps you’ve recently undertaken a fresh project in that area of your life. But that big clump of Capricorn messaging also falls in a house or two of your chart, and that’s where your fledgling efforts are about to face some obstacles.

The financial fallout from this virus will affect all of us in the U.S. (and in fact the world); that’s where the country feels the Capricorn menace in this ingress, in the second house (financial security). But where and how will you be specifically impacted? Do you have natal planets between 22 and 29 of cardinal signs (Aries, Cancer, Libra, Capricorn)? – those will add another layer of understanding about how your character will be tested.

Saturn enters Aquarius

I can’t help but hope that the situation will begin to look a little less grim as Saturn enters Aquarius on March 21 (8:58 pm PDT). Aquarius is a sign of revolution and progress, sociability and social conscience, and that’s hard to square with visions of grim-faced shoppers leaving supermarkets with their carts full of toilet paper.

And harder still to square it with the idea of social distancing. Yes, Aquarius is one of the most sociable of signs, and yes, Saturn can speak of boundaries and distance. But if you know anyone who was born with Saturn in Aquarius (dates below), you know that a hallmark of these age groups in general is a spirit of collectivism and social consciousness. I’ve been lucky enough to know many of them quite well, and every one has been a helper and a fighter on behalf of the less fortunate. Even if physical distance must be kept for the moment, friendships can become stronger than ever.

Saturn moves pretty slowly, and it last visited this sign in 1991-1993. After three very rough years of Saturn in Capricorn (and we’re not entirely done with it yet, because Saturn will turn retrograde and make its swan song there between July 1 and Dec. 16 of this year), it heartens me to think that we’re moving into a mini “age of Aquarius” for the coming few years. (Saturn will leave Aquarius for good on March 7, 2023.)

Whenever Saturn changes signs, it’s a signal that the container of your life, the structure, the framework, has been outgrown and its boundaries need to be redrawn. In Aquarius, resetting these boundaries comes with some upheaval and rebellion (look to the Aquarius house of your chart to find out where you’ll be restructuring); but in the end, it also offers hope of moving together toward a bolder, more equitable future.

Be well, take good care, and know that my very best wishes are with each of you!

Saturn was most recently in Aquarius during the following time periods:  Feb. 23, 1932-Aug. 13, 1932 and Nov. 19, 1932-Feb. 14, 1935; Jan. 1962-March 23, 1964 and Sep. 16, 1964-Dec. 16, 1964; Feb. 6, 1991-May 21, 1993 and June 30 1993-Jan. 28, 1994. If you were born with Saturn in Aquarius, you’ll be having a Saturn return in the next few years! Revisit this blog post for more thoughts about that.

© 2020 April Elliott Kent

 Jen and I explore all the week’s highlights on this week’s episode, 017 | Saturn in Aquarius: All in This Together

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7 comments to " Highlights for March 16-22, 2020: Tests, Fallout, and a Bold Future "

  • Leah Shaver

    Thanks for making me laugh, April. Love to you. <3

  • Denise

    Your observations about Saturn in Aquarius do square with what I have been thinking. Despite the hardships and a number of us needing to leave the stage (Saturn/Pluto) it hit me the other evening that the lesson going forward is interconnectedness, more of a Saturn in Aquarius thing. When some in our government (US) attempted to deny this, events just laughed at them. And the videos of quarantined Italians singing to each other out their windows – truly remarkable! We are all being forced to think about each other to a degree that we have not done before. Eventually, I believe some good will come of this.

    I look forward to the Jupiter/Saturn conjunction at 0 Aquarius at the winter solstice. Note too, that those Saturn in Aquarius folks born in the mid 60s are now in their mid fifties and moving into positions of power in society – I think that is a good thing, based on the individuals I know.

  • Drea B

    I have Saturn transiting my 6th house in Aquarius. I was originally excited because JUST BEFORE the virus shutdown I was preparing for an interview at a health club. So I thought that made sense. NOW with this virus cancelling everything I was working towards, I’m starting to feel paranoid that Saturn transiting 6th house could mean health problems. Trust me, I’m trying not to go there in my mind, but it creeps in here and there. I’m confused on where my thoughts need to go at this time; When things change so abruptly I tend to get lost. Any thoughts on anything? Anyone?

    • I feel for you, Drea. This thing has smacked us all squarely in the 6th house, even if Saturn isn’t transiting that precise place. I have results of an interview put off until the end of this month — or possible forever. Put your thoughts on how else you can get structured and disciplined in your life (Saturn), and how you use technology/organizations/friends to do that (Aquarius). Consider Saturn as more of way to focus your thoughts on 6th house things — health, diet, exercise, etc. I have it transiting my 3rd house, and man have I done a TON of writing. Hang in there!

    • RonjaThe Pigeon

      Drea, what might help is the essence of Mindfulness / Meditation / Yoga / Qi Gong / Tao. Our culture is so much about needing to DO something, even if it’s running around like a headless chicken (not referring to you, btw!) When we learn to live in a moment of stillness, it’s like the muddy frothing water in our head calms and the water becomes clearer so we can see what’s on the riverbed and which way we need to go. Focusing on the present moment and maintaining a calm still core means the answers tend to rise to the surface. Moment to moment, our gut tells us what the next step is (or not), and synchronicity in the outer world nudges us along too. We just have to learn to trust it. That’s the basic mechanism of how those New Agey (actually very Old Agey) practices work. And they DO work. In fact, I believe that the shift we’re all going through is a move away from logical planning and trying hard to work things out, more towards leaning back and trusting our inner GPS and intuition. That’s what being in the flow means. Everything *out there* is changing so rapidly now that no-one can plan anything anymore, and everyone is effectively being forced to go within and adjust their operating system.

      I find transmuting feelings of fear into excitement / exhilaration can make the energy productive, though it’s easier said than done and I don’t want to sound glib or patronising.

      As it happens I’ve had Saturn and Pluto ploughing through my 6th house too – after both steamrollered over my Sun. What I ‘hear’ in your post is a lot of fear of Saturn and that you expect it to be punishing and harsh. In fact, if you take the attitude of a co-operative student you should get along fine. I recommend finding some Steven Forrest to read or listen to on this, who taught me just that – and I believe our esteemed blog hostess is a Forrest fan too. Saturn through the 6th doesn’t necessarily mean health problems, if you use the opportunity to make improvements to diet, exercise, habits and routines.

      Apologies if you already know this stuff. Other people might find it useful as well.

  • April, as usual, you’ve nailed it, and so eloquently. It’s forcing me to look back at the previous Saturn in Aquarius. It was indeed a revolutionary time in my life. When Saturn was last in Aquarius, I graduated from college, started working at Intel and soon became the Editor in Chief of the Intel Technology Journal. While Saturn entered my 4th house during that period, it sure felt like it was affecting my 10th house very strongly — probably because I have so many planets there. I left Intel to work at an environmental engineering firm, which was also when I started therapy for the first time because of home and family turmoil. Then, shortly after Saturn opposed my 10th house Sun/Mercury, it entered Pisces, and I began work at Fujitsu, where I was on the team that created The Dreamscape (my term and creative IP), the world’s first graphical virtual world, grandmother to The Sims. I’d then write my first short film and it would be shot in Idyllwild. (Recently, the director went on to win an Oscar for a documentary he filmed about Dolores Huerta.) But man — the home problems. Like the current crisis, it forced me to deal with everything happening in my brain and in my family.

    Good things continue to happen now, even as the world reels. Saturn entering Aquarius gives me hope, too. Heck, even the Mars/Joop conjunction trining my 11th house Uranus gives me hope, as well as Uranus having entered my 7th house (even if that event is currently under NDA). Life and love go on. Let’s all sing to each other!

  • RonjaThePigeon

    April, I just want to say thank you for what you do. Astrology has literally saved my life and allowed me to navigate rocky patches rather than be submerged by them. I’m a Winter Solstice baby with a Cardinal-heavy chart full of squares and oppositions, so everything that Saturn, Pluto, Jupiter, and previously Uranus, threw at me over the last dozen years have straightened me and my messes out so much that I feel like I can finally take things in my stride. I never thought I would be in a position to say that. I follow lots of different astrologers but your wisdom and eloquence is very special.

    But if I sound smug and chilled out in my posts now (I hope not, but I can be tone deaf), it’s only because I have finally recovered from the absolute hammering the Saturn Pluto conjunction gave me, which was exactly square my chart ruling 4th house Moon. Winter was so hard I can’t even verbalise or spell out what went on. And yet, because I knew what the astrological weather was doing, I knew how to get through it, and your blog posts at that time were much needed balm. You made a genuine difference in my darkest hour. Thank you!

    And the Sat Jup Aqua thingy will be my birthday present this year so I’ll get to keep it all next year like a tennis trophy!

    I hope you and all your readers come out of this crisis hale and hearty and that none of your loved ones suffer the worst of it. I honestly believe we’re lurching towards a better way and a better world.

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