Some cultures have a much closer understanding and better relationship with death than others, Mexico being one of them.
Dia de los Muertos or Day of the Dead is celebrated every year on November 1st when people gather at cemeteries and remember and pray for their dead loved ones, leaving them food and gifts.
In general, the majority of us in the western world do not honour the dead in the same way and I’m ashamed to say I can’t always remember the exact date that my parents died without looking it up, although I still miss them dearly.
For traditional astrologers, Saturn was the planet associated with death and the end of things. It was the last of the traditional 7 planets and heavenly bodies and thus represents a boundary, the end of the road.
In modern astrology, we link Pluto with death, for in mythology he was God of the Underworld. I still view both planets, Saturn and Pluto, as symbols of loss, struggle and the dark side of life. Today, the 5th October 2012 at 20:34 GMT, Saturn enters the sign of Scorpio and only finally departs this sign on 18 September 2015.
Scorpio is ruled by Pluto and Pluto is currently in Capricorn, Saturn’s sign. The two are going to be in mutual reception (i.e. in each other’s sign) throughout Saturn’s journey in Scorpio and I believe this will strengthen these two formidable planets and help them to work in unison. In your own life, this may mean finding new strength or additional means to overcome difficulties. The two planets are also in a sextile aspect, which again is helpful. It says on the Skyscript website that: “Saturn sextile Pluto offers great strength of purpose and the ability to hold on tightly to principles and beliefs.”
Saturn is the ‘get real’ planet, however and a Saturn transit (when Saturn connects with a planet or angle in your own chart) is not a breeze. Other names for Saturn are Old Father Time, the taskmaster of the heavens and the planet of karma. Saturn can symbolise a burden, an obstacle, a dead end, someone saying No and meaning it, a glass half empty rather than half full, negativity or depression.
Having said all of that, I like Saturn, although I do admittedly have a strong Saturn in my own natal chart, for Saturn is also the planet of hard work, discipline, responsibility, commitment, authority and leadership. You need Saturn to create order out of chaos, to focus on the long-term goals and to keep you marching relentlessly until you reach the top of the mountain. You need a strong Saturn for stamina, endurance and seeing things through to the end.
When I was thinking about Saturn moving into Scorpio, the words “till death us do part” came into my mind which of course is taken from a traditional marriage vow:
I, — , take you, — , to be my wife/husband, to have and to hold from this day forward, for better, for worse, for richer, for poorer, in sickness and in health, to love and to cherish, till death us do part, according to God’s holy law, and this is my solemn vow.
This seemed fitting for Saturn’s move into Scorpio as the marriage vow is essentially a promise to be there through the good times but more importantly through the bad times as well. Scorpio rules the darker side of life and taboo topics such as sex, money and death. When life gets tough, will you hang on in there and promise to do your best? It’s often life’s toughest challenges that help us grow into caring and sensitive adults as we encounter life experiences that move us deeply.
Here’s a brief 12 sign recap for which area of life Scorpio rules in your chart and where you’ll find Saturn over the next 3 years:
Aries: shared resources, other peoples’ money, debts, loans, investments, inheritance
Taurus: relationships and partnerships, both personal & professional
Gemini: work, routine, health, everyday lifestyle
Cancer: entertainment, luck, children, love affairs, creativity
Leo: home, family, the past, your heritage
Virgo: communication, siblings, neighbours, life close to home
Libra: money, values, possessions
Scorpio: self, image, profile, personal goals
Sagittarius: retreat, solitude, inner work
Capricorn: friendships, groups, clubs, society
Aquarius: career, vocation, status, reputation, your legacy
Pisces: travel, study, philosophy, spirituality; where you find meaning in life
[photo from flickr.com]
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