The planets dance with each other, cycles forming between them. These are called synodic cycles: the relationship between one planet and another as they move from a joined position (conjunction), then around to that same position again. The process varies in length of time, depending upon the planets involved.
There are always multiple cycles going on at the same time, all overlapping with each other. In rare instances, multiple planetary cycles culminate at the same time.
We have such a scenario forming in 2020. Jupiter, Saturn and Pluto will each be connecting with the other, completing three different synodic cycles and beginning the next, all within a year.
The one planetary pair that is already in range of conjunction for all of 2019 is Saturn and Pluto. They are within 10 degrees orb of a conjunction in Capricorn (Saturn’s sign) all year. (And at the writing of this post, they are a mere 3 degrees apart). I have been observing these two planets’ placement in my clients’ charts as I look at their year-ahead forecasts, noting the house placement and any aspects these transiting planets are making. Through these observations, I have gained insight into the meaning of this transit for the individual and for the collective that I will share with you here.
Saturn and Pluto are winding down a 30-plus cycle in 2019 as they prepare to come together for their exact conjunction in January of 2020. We are now in the equivalent of the "Balsamic" Moon phase of the cycle between these two planets. The Balsamic phase is about endings and clearing the way for the new.
Old structures are ready to die, and new ones are coming--but not yet. This is a liminal time, wherein we are still invited to do the inner work before our outer world achievements can fully blossom.
Saturn is about facing reality, taking responsibility for what is ours, and setting boundaries. Saturn is particularly strong in its own sign right now, its energy further heightened by its connection to Pluto (the Great Intensifier). In my recent post about working with Saturn energy, I wrote:
Saturn energy gives us the clarity to prioritize, and then to protect, what is truly important to us. We can set boundaries around the use of our energy, time and talents. In doing so, we are more able to craft a life that is in alignment with our soul’s calling.
As Saturn dances with Pluto, life situations will arise throughout the next several months to show us what needs to be cleared out of the way so that we can pursue our goals from a place of strength in 2020.
Pluto is about letting go. We may need to say goodbye to something in our life that has run its course. But often when Pluto energy comes around, it is often something we are loathe to release.
When Saturn and Pluto come together, it is a serious time indeed. We will be unable to avoid the fact that some things in our lives are no longer working, are worn out, are ready to pass. As this happens, our fears will likely come up. But it behooves us to face them down rather than to run.
While Saturn-Pluto can sound daunting, there are things we can do to work with the flow of this cycle rather than against it:
Make intentional endings. You can use ritual, magic, prayer, intention, and affirmations to bring something to a close. Is there a situation in your life that you are ready to clear out for good? The energy is ripe now to help you do so. Focus your intentions/spells/rituals on the endings that you would like to bring about by the end of 2019.
Take responsibility, even if it’s scary. Take responsibility for what is yours to clean up. You will feel a sense of accomplishment, and often relief, in doing so. For example, let’s say that Pluto and Saturn are moving through your 2nd House of finances. This would be a time to focus on getting out of debt, if you have it. Or, maybe it’s time to start a disciplined savings plan. In whatever area of life Saturn-Pluto is triggering in your chart, you’re invited to confront fears in order to empower yourself to move forward.
Get clarity on what is NOT your responsibility, and give it back. Have you taken on responsibilities that are not yours to deal with? You may have to sit in discernment to figure out what’s what here. But it’s time to close up the energy leaks, set your boundaries, and regain your power. We have often taken on responsibilities and duties because we are afraid of something: Afraid of others’ disapproval. Afraid that others can’t take care of things as well as we can. Afraid of what will happen if we say NO. But it is time to face those fears and create a life in which we are attending to our true responsibilities.
Explore the archetypes. Here are some of the key words for Saturn and Pluto as they overlap: authority, power, integrity, intensity, realism, confrontation, responsibility, maturity, wisdom, depth, strength, backbone, endurance. Are there any words here that stand out for you? You could pick even one of these words as a short journal prompt. What does the word “integrity” mean for you right now? How is that theme showing up in your life?
With the Saturn-Pluto cycle at its close, we have the opportunity to face the fears that block us from being in our full power. At the onset of 2020, we have a chance to build something completely new, founded upon the clear-eyed inner work that we undertake in the remainder of this year.
Working with Saturn