Astrology Secrets Revealed by ERIC FRANCIS

Balancing Outer Planet Cycles


August 4, 2006 (with chart)


Dear Eric,


My first Saturn return is happening right now but stuck inside I still feel what feels like a void between my previous life and what's to come. Could this be due to Jupiter still being in my 12th house and, if so, is it more appropriate to make changes after it has moved into the first house?


Or should I just try harder to move on? I'm struggling with how to meet the challenges of my Saturn return appropriately within what feels more like true emptiness of direction than lack of motivation. I am not clear about how to balance the significant Pluto, Saturn, Jupiter and Uranus transits I am experiencing either. Thank you!





Dear Leisa:


Thanks for writing. I get the feeling from your chart that this whole theme you're discussing comes down to self-confidence, and moreover, having a tangible sense of self: a self that can live in the world, choose and experience. This takes feeling solid in your heart and soul, or embarking on a journey to get there, which is pretty much inevitable in life. Often that means letting go of your old expectations and beliefs about yourself and, in your particular situation, using your imagination.


You have so many transits happening; the only reasonable astrological advice is to come all the way from your core and really, merely, as directly as you can, be yourself every moment. If you're not sure who that is, experiment. The world is not exactly tailored for people to do this, and there are all kinds of factors that can make it difficult, but you have the moxie to do it. For you, with Venus in Aquarius, I would definitely say that life is about doing rather than thinking, though Venus can keep you in mental mode when what you really want to do is take action.


However, as much as all the lore and legends of astrology say that Saturn returns are a time of enormous change and progress, ultimately we have to be patient with the process. It is true that there are some transits where it's possible to accurately predict an effect to the day. There are circumstances when I've seen Saturn transits be rather astonishingly precise.


Generally, though with transits of Saturn, Chiron and other slow-movers, you need to think in terms of the seasons and years of the transit, and those around it, and not any one day, week or month. Saturn is a planet whose themes include long phases of time, and time itself. Saturn always rewards patience. But when Saturn says it's time to make a move, it most certainly is time, seemingly all at once.


The Saturn return is one of those before and after kinds of transits. When working with a client who's gone through it a long time ago, I will often make the discussion easy and ask, using the year of the transit's main focus, what was your life like before and after? They will think for a moment, and then the story will be interesting. Hearing several of these stories help me understand the ways in which a client tends to relate to their transits. I find this to be useful in counseling current transits.


It's a bit different working with someone in the midst of the Saturn return. After checking some recent transits, what I would want to hear about is what are the situations and choices you're facing right now. Often we don't see the most obvious ones. In terms of counseling technique, it's also reasonable to start with this approach. However, the journey of the past seven years (since the Saturn square) counts for a lot in the discussion of the Saturn return. It's also sensible to look at the events surrounding age 14 for clues.


As for what you state about your life in general: I think that 'stuck' can be a pretty good descriptive term, but then we would need to slowly parse out the particulars. These would involve your specific relationships, your current work as it relates to your larger plan, and how you feel about your current location on the planet. These are generally the big themes.


More than "expecting something to happen," I would propose that the Saturn return is a time to reconsider everything, and make decisions where you see choices. If you don't see choices, the quest then becomes one for those. These may be as much about what you opt against as much as what you opt for. With the Saturn return, there can be a phase of undoing that is followed by a phase of effort, after which the results gradually rise above their foundations.


Let's take a look at your chart and see what we learn.


The very first thing I notice when I see this chart is that you've been having a Pluto transit the past couple of years. I am sure these are among the transits you're referring to. You have the Sun and Moon in an exact square from Virgo to Sagittarius (readers may note the close degrees of the Sun and the Moon). Pluto has been working these degrees since around February 2004. While the transit is technically over and Pluto has moved on to a few degrees later in Sagittarius, I would say that this transit is still very much in progress. Because the Sun and Moon speak so intimately to one's sense of self, one's sense of presence in the world, I truly wonder what you've experienced since early 2004. So -- please do drop a note and let me know, and I'll key your response back to this discussion now.


While we're awaiting your response, I feel pretty confident offering some interpretations. You mention Jupiter transiting your 12th. I would propose that this would have you feeling pretty gosh darned restless. I say this because you have Uranus in the 12th house natally. If I could sit and listen to you for an hour or two, I would be extremely interested to hear the ways in which you live your life pushing the envelope of reality -- or the ways you want to.


The suggestion here -- my interpretation, as is all of this -- is that you will be happiest leading an edgy, daring life, staying on the move and making very large changes with shocking spontaneity. This is the astrology of someone on a bold experiment. Jupiter going over Uranus is only going to magnify that effect, though the reaction may be delayed until Jupiter crosses your ascendant next year.


Now let's talk about Saturn. Saturn in the 9th house can put some blinders around your ability to see the wider possibilities. The 9th house is the one that covers long range plans and visions, great distances and all matters of faith. Saturn is a little like having a rock garden in that house instead of a flower garden. It's fair to say that you have a little struggle with faith going on. I initially called it a self-confidence theme, but I would revise that to say that it comes down to faith in yourself.


Since Saturn is returning in this house, that's the thing that I think, above all, is going to budge, come unstuck, or start rolling like a boulder: faith in yourself. Start a project to get some. List all your achievements. Collect 10 letters of reference from people you've worked for. Make a list of all the times you've summoned courage and guts and gone against the odds.


I assure you: as one born in the year of the Red Dragon, there will be no shortage of accomplishments or people willing to vouch for you, in detail, with gusto.


Stage two is to start to make deeper contact with not only what you want to do in life, but what you must do. Let yourself dream, and see if you can climb up on top of that 9th house Saturn and see how far you can see. There is a bold mission in that Saturn, one that is uniquely yours and yours alone. Get out your binoculars and look in the approximate direction of 40 years old. While you're at it, I strongly suggest you get a set of paints and start playing with color, literally. Your mind plays a trick on you: it convinces you that you're going to have a boring career. Forget it. There is nothing boring about you.


Deep in there, you're something of a demented, inspired, daring genius who has the strength to stop at nothing. But you have the discipline to turn it into something, anything, you want: art, cinema, writing and a perfectly outrageous -- and beautiful -- marriage to somebody as strange, outrageous and bold as you.


Thanks again for writing.


Eric Francis