Saturn In The Birth Chart: Another Look At This Old Devil

Published: 15th June 2012
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This is the second in a series of articles that I have written in my attempt to bring Astrology down to Earth by describing what each planet represents and the part it plays in your Natal Chart. A whole book could be written on each planet, which most of them have been, however, I am trying to convey the essence of each planet so that those who are interested in understanding their own Birth Chart can grasp the basic meaning and gain insight into each planet.

Saturn the Overview

In the past Astrologers give the planet Saturn a bad reputation, naming it 'the great 'Malefic', because it has represented delays, frustrations, setbacks and sheer hard work. Although I do not deny these traits of Saturn as it is indeed a hard task master; however, also an excellent teacher. The main thing to remember about Saturn is that its objective is to make us independent and self-reliant., In essence to make us stand on our own two feet. The lessons taught by Saturn come from our own experiences,usually through trial and error, but from these we do eventually learn some valuable lessons. It can be tough living through these hard times of Saturn, but when you can look back and say, 'that was good for me', and as you realise that you have developed a deeper understanding and maturity,only then will you appreciate what Saturn has done for you. .

What Saturn Represents in us .

Saturn's symbolises our physical need for self-protection and self-preservation. The basic need for food, and shelter, and attaining these is led by the need for a physical sense of security that is within us all. This is the energy of Saturn, to maintain, to build, to preserve and to protect. As an ego planet Saturn gives us our physical sense of self, which we gain through our body. This also needs to be maintained and looked after, and at this basic level, Saturn within us is the monitor for all our survival and physical needs.

Saturn Represents the 'Mother Principle' in the Birth chart.

Because it is a 'feeling' planet many Astrologers associate the Moon with the 'Mother Principle' but,in Astrology/Psychology,we put Saturn in this role. This is because it is usually the Mother who teaches us the basics of how to take care of ourselves by ways of washing,cleaning our teeth and general grooming. It is she who gives us boundaries in by teaching us manners and how to fit into the structures of society. The Mother figure is our first teacher who also protects. 'Protect' is a key word for Saturn. By sign,house and aspect Saturn in the Birth Chart often describes the Mother influence in our lives. .

Saturn in the Natal Chart.

Saturn represents caution and protection wherever it is placed in the Birth Chart. It's placement can indicate limitation,delays, frustration,duty,responsibility,inadequacy and fear. Is it any wonder that it has been called 'the Great Malefic"! There is no doubt that there will be lessons to learn and obstacles to overcome wherever Saturn is placed in the Natal Chart. However,if we can heed its message to us,it can also be the area where we find self-mastery,independence,achievement and success. It is indeed a hard task master but it is from the principle of hard work and persistence that we become efficient . Saturn is professional and it will not let you cut any corners. Failure can make us bitter and resentful from a sense of 'not making it, even after all that hard work! This is a ideal time for reflection.

Saturn The Teacher In The Birth Chart

On another level, Saturn's placement in the Birth Chart shows us what we most need to learn. The House indicates the area of life and the Sign can indicate the innate challenge. Because Saturn is tied up with survival issues, you can understand the fear that still resides within our collective psyche. Saturn is also known as 'Old Father Time'. The Sign therefore can show what fears and anxieties,from the past, that need to be worked through and released.

I will use the element rather than go through each sign to give examples.

Remember, Saturn is about protection and caution, therefore Saturn in a water element ( Cancer, Scorpio or Pisces) can manifest itself as cold or unfeeling. However it is more to do with emotional repression as he or she may have had to protect their feelings in the past,and have built a defence system by way of protection. Maybe the lesson for this person is to learn to express their feelings and to feel safe and confident in doing so. This could be a hard struggle and a lifetime's task for watery Saturn.

In a Fire sign (Aries, Leo or Sagittarius) the whole ego identity could be wrapped up with Saturn, making he or she ridged, proud and self-centred, thus fear of failure or vulnerability could negate their true self-expression or creativity. Becoming aware of their own barriers could be a great step in allowing their fiery energy to flow.

An 'Airy' Saturn (Gemini, Libra or Aquarius) could restrict some form of communication, through learning or speech. This could hinder some important goal or desire he or she wishes to pursue. Here Saturn would also provide the urge to work at any inadequacy or perfect any commutative skill.

In Earth, its own element, (Taurus, Virgo or Capricorn) Saturn will work hard for material gain or a sense of status. Locked into material world, a person could literally 'work their fingers to the bone' and it could it take the onset of ill health, arthritis or old age before he or she eventually sees the light.

At this psychological level, Saturn is all about facing fears and removing old structures,before creating new ones built from the insights and efforts gained from your own life experience.

We need to accept the challenges of Saturn

Saturn is Mastery of the physical, Lord of the Earth plane and when you have established your own roots by satisfying all survival needs and beyond by your own achievement you have indeed pleased Saturn! It then that Saturn gives back its wisdom and maturity that enable you to teach others.


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Lucinda Tinsley as been studying Astrology for over 20 years. Her website www.lucindatinsley.com covers many aspects of this subject as she tries to bring astrology down to earth. Using the psychological approach she helps you to understand your unique Birth Chart. Giving you greater insights into yourself and your life.

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