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Hey! Its time for yet another astrology post. (Wow – when it rains it certainly pours!) And while I am at it, why not debunk some lingering, residual thoughts that Saturn (the planet in a horoscope and its symbolism) represents guaranteed hard times. Because that reasoning is simply in error.
Up until the 18th century, the furthest planet from the Sun (that we could see with the naked eye) was… Saturn, the old devil whose name rings oddly synonymous with Satan, which has been associated with “Cold, Dry, Testing, Restricting, Contracting and Debilitating,” at least this is how it was interpreted by medieval astrologers (along with astrologers dating back to the Greek and Babylonian periods). There was much less choice about one’s life than there is today – in their time, social class, education and pedigree meant a lot and it was challenging to go about changing one’s situation. Of course you could argue that not much has changed today…
Fast forward to the 20th and 21st centuries, where we have American Idol, The Shark Tank and academic achievements being recognized and rewarded. Some of our presidents come from little tiny states that many people never hear about (think Clinton) and others get elected due to their family’s name and / or fortune. For the most part however, the amount of work, study, research and experience we have in a field can be rewarded. There are those rare exceptions nowadays of people getting their PhD’s in religious studies or philosophy leaving many parents scratching their heads going, “Why would you major in that?” And some of these people end up becoming food and beverage managers or carpenters. But I digress, back to my argument about Saturn..
I want to present the argument, contrary to popular belief, that Saturn is actually the most rewarding planet of all. Many astrologers would probably scoff at this premise, but hear me out. Yes yes, I realize that Jupiter is considered the “Great Benefic.” And Venus always rewards us through our friends and loved ones, especially when we practice generosity and unconditional loving-kindness. Well, when it comes to doing the uncomfortable, nitty-gritty work, there is no greater benefic than Saturn. Of course, you might say, “Who wants to do that?” A friend of mine recently mentioned, that to attain enlightenment or to get on stage at Carnegie Hall is the same – it requires Practice, Practice, Practice. Maybe I should refine my argument – when it comes to work done in this lifetime, Saturn provides the greatest reward. If you want to talk about inheritance (whether from past lives’ merit and / or from trust funds), then go with Jupiter.
Saturn speaks of discipline, practicality and keeping up with the details. Basically the little things in life matter – I love the saying that “life is 90% maintenance.” What a great Saturnian quote! Jupiter and Venus can lead to laziness and enjoyment of the luxuries and comforts of life. While Saturn says, “Hey, you’ve been studying this subject diligently for the past nine years, now it is time to start teaching others (or get that dream professorship you have been wanting)! And therefore be rewarded for your time in service.”
One way my argument might falter is in that Saturn tends to resonate with the purification of negative karma. So we could be sailing along, doing everything “right” when all of a sudden, Bam! We unexpectedly have to take care of an ailing parent (Saturn in the 4th, 6th houses) or a chronically ill sibling (Saturn in the 3rd) or somehow it falls to us to care for an ailing in-law (Saturn in the 10th). Well, I would counter with the fact that we have to cleanse the pallet as it were – clear the old to make space for the new. There are times in life where we have to do that which is less than comfortable, and sometimes this work can be just as rewarding. So sand down those rough spots in your psyche (and know it is going to work out in the end!).
I have heard Tibetan Lamas discussing the benefits which come from diligent spiritual practice. Of course enlightenment is the utmost goal of spiritual practice, however, there are also residual affects. [From my limited knowledge, I think we have to be practicing sincerely and humbly to acquire these perks.] And this practice is neither easy nor comfortable. For instance, one man met what might seem like the perfect mate – a strikingly beautiful, very intelligent yet modest young woman (I’m not trying to promote an opinion here, only to describe the situation). They got married and currently have one of the cutest boys I have ever seen. Well… Prior to meeting this idyllic woman, this guy had done thousands of full prostrations in the past couple years – maybe even 108,000. I have heard other stories of people practicing Dzambhala or Green Tara and being able to manifest many of their desires. It makes sense, especially if we “believe” in Buddhist deities being real and being able to affect the lives of people who make a strong connection with them.
Well who’d have thought? I just brought Green Tara and Dzambhala into the same conversation as Saturn… I hope they do not mind! However, Saturn is known as the great teacher and tester. I would love to hear your comments about “time in service” equaling eventual promotion.