We’re now in the thick of retrograde season, and Saturn retrograde in Aquarius is up next to shake up our summer. This transit—which spans from May 23 to October 11—may strike a pang of fear in your heart if you associate Saturn’s entire reputation with the astrological phase of your Saturn return. But, the taskmaster planet is marked by so much more than a rocky time at the end of your twenties, and so are its retrograde periods.
In astrology, Saturn rules authority, aging, creating meaningful structures, and integrity. When it “moves backwards” in a retrograde cycle, we are able to retrace our steps when it comes to these themes. Since all retrograde periods are connected to resurfacing items from the past—and Saturn especially deals with history and tradition—Saturn retrograde is a time to embrace “older but wiser” as a motto.
“During this time, we should look at these realms from a different perspective…as this will allow us to make further progress,” says Stephanie Gailing, astrologer and author of The Complete Guide to Astrological Self-Care. “Not only do we see things we may have missed the first time, but we can address them from a more instinctive and intuitive lens, further adding to our understanding and embrace of these arenas.”
With Saturn retrograde in Aquarius, the humanitarian sign of change and the greater good, Gailing says we can expect to see major collective shifts in the world. This might include breakthroughs in science that come from revisiting a realm where there’s already been work done, re-assessing the logistics of a system, re-addressing our approach to global health, and tweaks to technology that help us do our work as well as feel connected to each other around the world.
In the following week, we may find ourselves attuned to the themes of responsibility and duty, being more aware of the power of time, and the consequences that arise when we cut corners.
But on a personal level? We largely want to look at the time between May 23 and October 11 as beginning and end points for significant change when the planet’s themes become very loud. So, in the following week, we may find ourselves attuned to the themes of responsibility and duty, being more aware of the power of time, and the consequences that arise when we cut corners.
FWIW, there are are two signs that might find challenges with this transit: The first is Aquarius, since, well, this retrograde occurs in its sign. “The steps that they are retracing may point them to ways to further align their outer identity with their inner one,” says Gailing. “It’s important for them to really look to see what lights them up and gives them vitality. This includes the way that they take care of themselves, mind, body and spirit.”
Meanwhile, Aquarius’s opposite sign Leo might also see some noticeable challenges, especially since the Saturn retrograde in Aquarius occurs in Leo’s seventh house of partnerships. “They should look out for adjustments, re-dos and re-assessments that may come their way via relationships: their friends, partners, clients, and colleagues,” Gailing says. “Again, invariably this may lead to more sustainable solutions, but when things are not going smoothly—even if for a bit—in our relationships, it makes everything feel a bit more stressful.”
That being said, Gailing stresses not to be nervous about the whole span of the Saturn retrograde in Aquarius. Rather, she suggests paying special attention to the days surrounding to beginning and ending of this cycle, as “many clues and jewels of awareness abound during this time.” Otherwise, do the self-work! Saturn retrograde can present some obstacles, but ultimately, it wants us to grow and learn.
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