“It is in troubled times that it becomes most important to remember that the wonder of life places the medicine of the Self near where the poison dwells. The gifts always lie near the wounds, the remedies are often made from poisonous substances and love often appears when deep losses become acknowledged.” ~Michael Meade
Visualize the astrological landscape of November and December as the final way station of a great pilgrimage. The venerable pilgrim is Saturn, archetype of the elder, the Senex, Guardian of Boundaries, Time and Karma, plodding through Pluto’s underworld in the eighth sign of Scorpio since October 2012. As the planet carrying the archetypical energy of matter, structure, foundation as much as restriction, discipline and hardship, imbued with the deep, abysmal, profoundly psychological vibe of Scorpio, the Eighth Sign of the Zodiac, Saturn has been making himself known in our daily lives, forcing us to anchor ourselves in the depths of our psyches and uncover all that was secretly running the show of our life from behind the curtains: forgotten issues, subconscious patterns and complexes.
As the Master Teacher approaches Sagittarius at the end of December, after its trip through the underworld, now is the time to mindfully process the losses and the learnings. This opportunity to work co-creatively and intentionally with such a powerful archetype in the Eighth House of Transformation won’t come round again for another 29 years. Think back to 1983-1985 for the last transit of Saturn through Scorpio and the themes that were evoked in your life. Saturn in Scorpio’s great teaching is the Koan:
“All instruction is but a finger pointing to the moon; and those whose gaze is fixed upon the finger will never see beyond. Even let him catch sight of the moon, and still he cannot see its beauty.”
The Dweller on the Threshold is at the heart of both the Full Moon and the New Moon, with the Lunations falling either side of the archetype. At the Full Moon in Taurus on November 6 the conjunction of Sun, Venus and Saturn in Scorpio opposes Moon in Taurus, squares Jupiter in Leo and trines Chiron. The symbolism is clear—it’s a point of reckoning, a time for a fearless self-appraisal and a reality check in the name of a great healing, not in judgment, but in the penetrating light of awareness. Once you’ve seen your quirks, foibles, weaknesses and self–deceptions, your Witness records it in your consciousness. Once you’ve truly understood the courageous sacrifices that you’ve made in the name of personal growth since 2012, you can feel nothing but love for your spirit.
The Chandra Symbol for Saturn at 24 degrees Scorpio tells us:
Coca bushes growing wild in the Andes Mountains.
The proliferation of worlds. Discovery that there is more, far more. The burden of knowing too much, too soon. And the desperation to escape from your destiny into any one of so many worlds. An overwhelming need to deny what lives within. A well-practiced art of self-evasion, intricate and advanced. Yet the pursuer, the destiny-being, is relentless and unimpressed with excuses. When tracked down and faced with everything you most fear, there begins a different journey to the heart of existence.
At the New Moon in Sagittarius on November 22, Saturn is conjunct the Messenger and the Moon in a stellium which thins the veils between the material and spiritual dimensions.
The Chandra symbol for Saturn at 26 degrees Scorpio says:
Three blue robin eggs.
Holding inside you a complete future vision. Preserving and guarding a limitless awareness of what can be and of what shall be. You feel so pervasively the impact of what you carry inside that each piece of it now becomes supercharged with meaning and archetypal power, beyond how it might seem to anybody else. Being in the preliminary stages of something so vast and staggering that even those stages feel momentous beyond conception. Just about bowled over by future destiny. The personal self of now is cast into shadow, seeming trivial, a throwaway. But so transported by prenatal resolves to go all the way this time that any sacrifice or difficulty is chalked up to necessary stages of rough process. And the inner mind holds its lodestar in view, and simply cooks inside till it’s time to boil over.
Your Pilgrimage—Questions to Ponder
Our journeys are not informed by what we know, but what we don’t know. So much in this world is dependent on knowledge. It feels like a great relief that there is also value in the things which we do not know. In reality, it is possible that our questions tell us far more about ourselves than our answers do. But unless we accept the invitation that our questions offer us, our questions remain just questions.
To learn from our questions we must engage them, and to engage our questions we must turn our questions into our quest. There are many types of questions the beget quests—relational, vocational, spiritual, existential—but all questions worthy of quests have one thing in common: they are essential. And because these questions are of the essence, their answers can only be found in the essence—of the self, of the other, of the soul.
- What major shift in identity is occurring?
- What in me is dying and what is being born?
- What is trying to emerge?
- Where are the unattended wounds that need to be healed?
- Where are more boundaries needed?
- Which outgrown roles and identifications have you left by the wayside?
- What might you future look like, as you connect with the Saturn as Magician?