So, one of my longtime readers recently contacted me. Like many people, 2020 has been a rather difficult year, and she is desperately trying to find meaning and understanding in the upheaval that has occurred in her life, and all of ours as well.
2020 can be divided into 3 parts: Winter Eclipse Season + Saturn-Pluto conjunction + Jupiter-Pluto conjunction, Summer Eclipse Season + Jupiter-Pluto conjunction, and then Mars Retrograde + Jupiter-Pluto conjunction + late Fall Eclipse Season that ends with the ultimate finale of Jupiter conjunct Saturn (that is a LOT of stuff for one year). I have written at length about Saturn conjunct Pluto in my monthly articles for Coventry Creations, and now is the time for me to write about Jupiter conjunct Saturn that occurs on December 21 in Aquarius.
I need to mention at the beginning of this article, that there is a tendency for us to look at these massive conjunctions and just make note of them as occurring on a certain date, and then just accept whatever happens is going to happen. We tend to then move onto what is next on the astrological horizon. However, these powerfully potent configurations are active for an entire cycle and in the case of Jupiter-Saturn, the cycle lasts for approximately 20 years. So, the opening square, the opposition, and the closing square all will trigger the original conjunction, just like the Quarter and Full Moons are part of the lunar cycle.
One of the challenges with major configurations is simply where to begin. Of course, the best way to understand any planetary conjunction is through amplification and normally I would begin with the mythology of Jupiter and Saturn (and I will get there), but first I would like to travel back in time to January 1961.
January 1961 was the beginning of a decade that addressed many issues including racial discrimination, sexual discrimination (gender and orientation), war protests over Vietnam, space exploration with the United States landing on the Moon, and a second wave of social entitlement programs during the Johnson administration. However, despite how socially altering were these issues, most of them coincided with the Uranus Pluto conjunction that occurred later in the decade, so it was the election of John F. Kennedy and his subsequent assassination that echoes the feeling tone of the Jupiter-Saturn conjunction that occurred on February 18, 1961 in Capricorn.
The conjunction of Jupiter and Saturn in Capricorn is concerned with hierarchy and social standing. Capricorn naturally rules the 10th house of the chart, which has a lot to say about our reputation and ‘designated lane in life’ as it does about our career. I don’t think that there is any image more glamorous to Capricorn as the symbolism of Camelot that emerged out of Kennedy’s tragic assassination.
I recently watched the film Jackie, which I highly recommend if you want an understanding of the social idealisms prevalent of the time. The film centers around Jackie’s obsession with the short term of the young President and his subsequent legacy after his death. Although Kennedy was not President long enough to enact numerous policies, and although many of his ideas were passed on to the Johnson administration (racial discrimination rights and social entitlements), the biggest event of his administration was the Cuban Missile Crisis.
Jackie Kennedy invited Life Magazine journalist, Theodore A White, to the Kennedy compound to be interviewed about her husband’s Presidency. It was during this interview that the former first lady said, “Don’t let it be forgot, that for one brief, shining moment there was Camelot.” It was this quote that she borrowed from the musical Camelot (a favorite of President Kennedy) that cleverly reimagined the first family as American Royalty and created a mystique out of the tragedy of his death that still exists today.
Curiously, the 1961 conjunction of Jupiter and Saturn was not the only time in American History when the President elected close to a conjunction of the two social planets died in office, although Kennedy’s and Lincoln’s are the most recognized. From the 1840 election and subsequent death of William Harrison to every Jupiter-Saturn President until Kennedy, died in office, this includes Lincoln, Garfield, McKinley, Harding, and Roosevelt. President Ronald Reagan and President George W. Bush both had assassination attempts, but neither died in office, and President-Elect Joseph Biden doesn’t take office until January 2021.
The symbolism of leaders dying in office is a symbol that goes back several millennia. In ancient astrology, the only planets that were known were the seven inner planets, so the conjunction of Jupiter-Saturn reflected a major event and often coincided with the death of the ruler (usually a king) and the installation (often a coronation) of someone new.
In the Jupiter Saturn Conference Lectures, Liz Greene had the following to say about this transfer of power:
“In historical terms, an interregnum is always accompanied by revolution and riots and conspiracies and general chaos, because all the social groups which have been repressed for so long go berserk. Armies go berserk, and every organization and structure feel as though its disintegrating, because the thing which has been restrained has broken down.” (pg. 192, CRCS)
Perhaps, we are witnessing an interregnum now as political factions around the world are more akin to the Hatfield’s and the McCoy’s than groups with opposing views. Further, politicians have become as adept as celebrities in adapting “stan” culture and utilizing their base both productively and destructively.
After the conjunction of 1961, the next conjunction occurred three times in Libra in 1981. The sign of Libra is associated with relationships, all sorts, including relationships between business partners, countries, and even enemies. Further, the conjunction occurred with a Pluto copresence which was also shaking up our collective views of relationships.
The most significant relationships that occurred around the time of the conjunction was the marriages of Prince Charles and Lady Diana Spencer, and the fictional relationship of Luke Spencer (you can’t make this up) and Laura Webber on ABC’s General Hospital. Both weddings were viewed by millions and the envy of the world, but neither lasted despite their fairytale qualities. In the case of Charles and Diana, the marriage ended in divorce in 1996, and although Diana gave up her title of “Her Royal Highness”, she became a worldwide icon figure. As for Luke and Laura, well that’s television.
In worldly affairs, the 80’s saw a complete realignment of countries. After 20 years of a Cold War between The United States and the USSR, tensions began to simmer and ultimately towards the end of the decade they began to end. Additionally, as the Soviet Union began to fracture, we seen communism slowly wither and die throughout much of the world, and currently less than a handful of these countries remain.
Culturally, relationships throughout the 80’s and 90’s slowly began to change. Women began to enter the workforce at greater numbers and became less reliant on men for financial security. Divorce was no longer a ‘dirty word’ or a scandal as the dissolution of marriage became commonplace. Marriage equality also moved closer to becoming reality as LGBT activists ramped up equal rights in all relationships, not just heterosexual ones. And I can’t ignore the ‘self-help’ movement of the late 80’s that brought us terms such as codependency and love addiction. These terms became an active discussion in therapy offices and recovery from love obsessions became as popular as recovery from drugs and alcohol.
At the end of the 90’s, the computer industry led by Silicon Valley and the potential commercialization of the internet laid the seeds for the Jupiter-Saturn conjunction of 2000 in the sign of Taurus. The tech bubble had started to burst by May of 2000, but the themes of the conjunction – money, wealth, and acquiring resources – became noticeable. Throughout this Jupiter-Saturn cycle, ideologies such as the Law of Attraction and wealth workshops became more accessible to the common masses, and towards the middle of the cycle thousands of courses became available by internet gurus with offerings in entrepreneurship, buying and selling stocks and bonds, and how to leverage internet influence. Many websites, most notably Google (and its YouTube product) began to monetize, which created avenues for people with large enough platforms to make money and further grow their audience if they had some way to entertain their base.
Of course, Jupiter-Saturn in Taurus had its dark side.
In 2001, corporate giant Enron filed bankruptcy after investigators learned that it had cooked the books with fake revenue and reduced its liabilities by pushing debt to side companies, which resulted in inflated company stock value. Enron became the highest bankruptcy filing in US history and still experts have trouble understanding how exactly Enron ended up so out of control. Next up, in the summer of 2002, the United States federal government filed criminal charges against executives of WorldCom for accounting fraud for approximately 11 billion dollars. And, in 2007, the subprime mortgage scandal resulted in millions of people losing their entire life savings as banks across the United States began filing bankruptcy including Lehman Brothers.
In each of these cases, many individuals who had invested money in these companies lost everything. Retirement plans were wiped out. However, in many cases, even those convicted of multiple crimes, profited off their company’s demise. WorldCom CEO Bernard Ebbers drove himself to a Louisiana prison in a Mercedes, while many people that experienced great loss and economic hardship were at home feeding their families ramen noodles, hot dogs, and boxed macaroni and cheese.
Another notable side-effect of the conjunction in Taurus were the massive tax cuts during the Bush and Trump administrations. Corporations like Amazon, Netflix, General Motors, and Jet Blue Airways used tax loopholes and paid $0.00 in federal income tax, whereas the middle class was paying up to 33%. Income disparity became a frequent topic of protestors that spawned Operation Wall Street, as well as the candidacies of Bernie Sanders and Alexandria Ocasio Cortez. Democratic socialism became an increasingly popular ideal (especially with millennials) and the desire for universal healthcare, living wages, and climate control became hot button issues. Although many of these ideals have not yet become actualities, the seeds have been planted.
Now, before we get into the details of the upcoming conjunction Aquarius, it would be helpful to look at the planets Jupiter and Saturn.
Earlier, I discussed the Jupiter-Saturn conjunction coinciding with the death of the king, a crisis period (or as Liz Greene calls an interregnum), and the birth of the new king. This was a major part of the medieval astrological tradition, and they didn’t just decide this out of the blue, it was passed down from earlier astrological traditions and Greek and Roman mythology.
In myth, Kronos (Saturn) was the king of the Gods and he married his sister-wife Rhea. Kronos became the king when he defeated his own father Ouranos (Uranus). However, like all good myths, once defeated Gaia and Ouranos informed Kronos that he too would be overthrown by one of his sons. Of course, this made Kronos extremely paranoid and every year when Rhea gave birth, he would devour his offspring.
Rhea becomes enraged and like her mother (Gaia) devised a plot to overthrow her husband, and when her son Zeus (Jupiter) was born, she hid him in a cave and handed over a rock wrapped in swaddling clothes to Kronos. Meanwhile, Zeus was raised by nymphs, suckled by a she-goat, and protected by his foster brother Pan until he was ready to battle his father.
At the right time, Zeus receives a potion by the Titaness Metis and takes on the role of Kronos’ cupbearer. Zeus mixes the potion with Kronos’ favorite honey drink and he proceeds to vomit up his siblings fully grown and ready for battle.
The war between the Titans and Olympians lasted for 10 years (half a Jupiter-Saturn cycle), and Zeus banished the male Titans to Tartarus, yet allowed the female Titans, in honor of Rhea and Metis, to remain free. Zeus then becomes the King of the Olympian Gods and gives his brother Poseidon dominion over the sea and his brother Hades dominion over the underworld.
On the psychological level, the battle of Jupiter and Saturn is another story that reflects one generation giving way to the next one. However, there is one major difference between the stories – in the battle between Saturn and Uranus, Saturn battles Uranus alone, and in Jupiter’s battle with Saturn, Jupiter receives aid from his siblings. In symbolic terms, this reflects the power of “unity,” which according to many religious traditions is the most powerful magical force in the universe.
Astrologically, Jupiter and Saturn are opposites. Jupiter wants to expand, and Saturn wants to restrict. Jupiter likes the world of potential, possibilities, and the expansive creative spirit, whereas, Saturn is conservative, a traditionalist, and likes the world of form and reality. So, it’s easy to see the conflict that occurs when these two planets conjoin. Moreover, as I said earlier, when these two planetary principles come together, they reflect the end of something, a period of adjustment, and the beginning of something new. Whether that ‘something new’ is beneficial or not is in the eye of the beholder. This conjunction is in the sign of Aquarius, which is more concerned with group thought, social ideals, and the progression of the species, which can all mean different things to different people including the groups they belong to.
Now, let’s look at several of the keywords associated with Aquarius – reforming, progressive, tolerant, humanitarian, and inventive – these keywords are helpful, and possibly that will be the result of the conjunction. However, considering the current cultural climate other keywords such as anarchist, fanatic, deviant, and antisocial are deeply concerning.
The sign opposing Aquarius is Leo, and Leo is concerned with individual self-expression, and when that urge toward individual pursuits is quashed by social influence and political correctness, it can erupt in violent protests, authoritarian urges, and endless conspiracy theories whose undercurrents are born out of the suppression of individual thoughts and motivations. We must find a way to straddle the line between both signs, and give meaning to both the progression of the group as well as individual ingenuity.
Finally, let’s discuss how this is going to affect personal charts because all this understanding of the conjunction of Jupiter and Saturn is meaningless if it’s not rooted in everyday people and everyday life. Jupiter and Saturn will not only conjunct in the heavens but they will also conjunct somewhere in your chart.
I recommend that everyone gets a copy of their chart and understand the basic components: Your sun, moon, and ascendant. There are several basic astrology books that I recommend, but my personal favorite is “Astrology for Yourself,” by Demetra George. Astrology for Yourself is in workbook form and is excellent for the novice. Also, here is a cheat sheet if needed.
In personal astrology, the Jupiter – Saturn conjunction works the same way that it works through worldly events, except in this case the world is going to be your own. Something in your life is going to come to an end, a period of transition is going to occur, and then something new is going to be born. Saturn will remain Saturn and the stronger of the two planets because he is in his own sign of Aquarius, whereas Jupiter will remain Jupiter (although he is considered peregrine in Aquarius and weaker than Saturn), but his expansive optimistic qualities may be diminished by Saturn’s tendency to restrict and limit. Likewise, Jupiter’s tendency to expand every planet that it transits can increase Saturn’s qualities. Together, these two planets reflect an urge to grow beyond who we are now and ultimately through the process innate within these planets, more mature.
One of the first factors that you need to consider is the natal placements of Jupiter and Saturn. This would include the signs they are in, the houses where they reside, and the aspects they make. For example, if you have Venus trine Jupiter or Sun square Saturn, then the innate experiences of Jupiter and Saturn will also be experienced as Jupiter and Saturn transit the chart. So, regardless of the transit, you will bring the natal signature with you and you will further unfold your natal placements through transits of Jupiter and Saturn, as well as transits to your natal Jupiter and Saturn.
Next, you need to look at the house that the Jupiter-Saturn conjunction lands. The conjunction occurs at 00 Aquarius. Find the house in your chart where this occurs and make note of it and its meaning because that house will be the stage of action for the Jupiter-Saturn show. If Jupiter-Saturn land in the first house then issues around self-expression, personal identity, and the persona you project to the rest of the world will begin to go through changes. You may begin to take matters more seriously and find a sense of urgency in your actions. If Jupiter-Saturn lands in your tenth house, you may make the decision to change careers or find something that is truer to your nature, especially if you have felt stifled or restricted in your current profession. If Jupiter-Saturn lands in your 7th house, relationships will take center stage and need to be evaluated.
The last chart factor to look at is if Jupiter conjunct Saturn aspects any planets in your chart. The planet being aspected will be the archetypal principal the conjunction will work through. If Jupiter-Saturn aspects your Sun, then your sense of individual identity will go through changes or if Jupiter-Saturn aspects Mars, then your drive and determination to get what you want will go through adjustments and a new strategy will emerge.
In closing, I would like to introduce you to a Greek deity that gets little mention. Caerus is the youngest son of Zeus and was the personification of opportunity and favorable moments. He comes and goes, and his influence is fleeting. Caerus reflects the brief moments when we can take advantage of opportunities.
Every astrological transit, whether it involves Mars, Venus, or Jupiter conjunct Saturn, presents us with an opportunity to use its energy to our advantage. In the case of Jupiter conjunct Saturn, the letting go of the old and embracing the new provides us with the gumption to release stagnant energies that have blocked our forward momentum. If we are willing to grasp ‘Caerus’ and work with these ‘fleeting moments’ with an open mind, we will experience great fulfillment and inner authenticity.
Storm Cestavani, December 2020
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