Dawne Kovan

Sky Watching Wisdom , Astrology

The Transits and Cycles of Saturn

This article covers the various personal cycles of Saturn, including Saturn in Libra 21/7/10 to 5/11/12 (with a 6 month re-entry into Virgo from 30/10/09 to 7/4/10).

The reason I head my blog articles “Astrology for Grown Ups” is because I respect all my readers and treat them like adults. No pretending everything in the garden is lovely when it is patently obvious that it isn’t. However, I believe, as did the Ancients, that “Knowledge is Power” – so by reading these articles, you will have the information you need to ready yourselves for the things that are heading our way – and understand those things that have passed already.

Saturn is the planet most associated with reality checks; and as is obvious by the state of our nations now – we don’t like reality. We would rather dream and hope that tomorrow will be a better day. However, Saturn teaches us that tomorrow is founded on today, yesterday and all the years before.

We can certainly see that our parlous financial problems right now are reflected by the Uranus/Pluto relationship which will run for the next 3 or 4 years. This will offer us many opportunities to completely revise our relationship with consumerism and commercial versus human values; so we don’t have to rush and make sudden decisions – we do have plenty of time.

The energies of Uranus and Pluto are truly Universal – in other words, their effects are global in nature, as we can see by simply reading the newspapers. No country is left untouched by what is going on out there. Saturn on the other hand is a personal planet that impacts on our lives with regularity, like a drum beat. It was called Chronus by the ancient Greeks, meaning “Time”. It also represented old age, fatherhood and responsibility. Pretty heavy duty values for today’s world to take on board. Nonetheless, each time it pays your chart a visit, you will feel its demands on your shoulders and, depending on your natural inclinations, you will either welcome the opportunity or attempt to avoid it. There is a strong sense of being narrowed down, being restricted and focused on what must be done – for some this can be a relief and for others like being imprisoned in reality. “The world is too much with us of late” said Wordsworth, after his own Saturn Return.

So where is Saturn in the sky, today? I hear you ask. It is at the end phase of a 3 year trip through its favourite sign, Libra, which is associated with relationships, balance and harmony. This has been going on since October 2009 – October 2012, with 6 months back in Virgo in 2010. By January 2012 it will be at the very end of Libra, where it will make a station in February to go retrograde until June when it will go forward into Scorpio in October 2012.

For those of you who have your Sun in Libra – i.e. were born late September to late October – you will either have already had Saturn on your Sun or are about to. This is a time of endings and beginnings – letting go of things, people, circumstances that no longer serve your life in the long term – and embracing new possibilities that will take a few years to bed into your life. It is an extremely constructive and deepening period for you, just a bit short in laughs – and it’s only for 9 months. For those of you who have their Suns in Aries with Saturn in your opposite sign, this gives an opportunity to take an eyes-wide-open look at what you want out of life and who you want to share it with. For you Cancerians – you may likely have found it a struggle to let go of some people or things, as you love to hold on even though they have outlasted their usefulness in your life. You sensible, down to earth Capricorns welcome Saturn in your lives, as it is your ruling planet. You seem to ride the wave and get lots done during this time creating a lasting and positive impact.

As you can see all the signs get a shot at having Saturn pay them a visit. The complete orbit takes 29.5 years. This phenomenon is known as the Saturn Return, when it replicates its natal position on your chart – and life! And it’s what makes people over thirty different from those in their twenties. It is a reality check about life, growing up at last and being a contributing adult to your world. Many people during this 9 month period that the Saturn Return is effective, either marry or divorce, have babies, look to create something more substantial in their lives, start their own businesses or wake up to the fact that they need to do more to give their lives structure and meaning. It’s about looking at the long-term rather than short term.

Before the return we also experience the 90 degree aspect to the natal place at around 7/8 years old – this is never easy – just look how many children are sent away to boarding school or parents divorce during this period; the opposition around 14/15 where teens have to make huge choices of subjects to take to exam level; the 2nd square at around 21/22 where we begin to step into looking after ourselves and earning a living.

After the Return we then have the next square at 36/37 and opposition at 44/45 – the mid-life crisis – which can impact on our career lives – questions like “should I take the promotion, even though it will wreck my social life?” or “should I retrain for a whole new career that embraces my old one and gives me even more options?” are common at these times. The second Saturn Return around 58/9 used to be the point when one contemplated retirement and old age – well, no longer! Now it seems to be the time for doing the things we put to one side in earlier years for the necessities of family, career, etc. So the old dreams can be dusted down, tested by the knowledge of how the real world works learned through our experiences, and constructing a life that will sustain until the 3rd Saturn Return in our late 80’s.

Please note that Saturn is not really interested in your emotional life – rather the rewards come from facing reality, working hard and being a contributing citizen to your world. The agenda is much bigger than simply personal concerns – and represents an energy to be embraced and co-operated with, in order to become someone who understands much and uses that understanding to create a meaningful life.




  1. Dear Dawne – as always this is interesting reading – there’s plenty going on and who knows what each moment is going to gift us with – this is what makes life such an adventure – but enlightenment would be good one of these fine days!!! Pray this finds you well and happy – busy it would seem…

  2. Dawne, I’ve enjoyed reading this blog, looking back at what I was doing at my First Saturn Return, turning around like a dog making its bed, and finally settling to start my own business.

    Now I am at my Second Saturn Return with a Libra Sun-Saturn configuration creating a lot of endings and new beginnings and letting go into a whole new life and business venture. What I am really happy about is that once established this will carry me through until I am nearly 90. Just the perfect time to retire.

    There is so much that I can identify with in what you are saying and it helps me to relax into being a part of this great change that the world is presently going through while making my contribution to a very elegant Universe.

    Dawne Kovan Reply:

    Thank you Dot – I am pleased the article enables you to clarify the various steps along your way. It can help you to gain a new perspective by seeing the rhythm of the Universe beat through your life.

  3. Thanks Dawne! How fascinating to watch the world turn…, I mean life turn and to see how those thoughts so often expressed in poetry, anger and frustration are lead by reality of an orbiting planet. It should really be part of the National Curriculum… not sure whether it would fit into History, Philosophy and Ethics, Economics, Maths, Science, and Psychology… Thank you

  4. Thank you, David, for your kind words – in older times, before the Age of Enlightenment (!) Astrology was a requirement on the syllabus of all medical students. Even today some doctors like to see the birth chart of their patients or take the time of their first meeting with the patient – this is called the study of Decumbiture.