This post is written by James Burgess, a writer and teacher of astrology. You can read more on Sabian Symbols and his approach to astrology on his website Sabian Mysteries.
Saturn and Pluto are the serious ones! And in 2020, they both align at exactly 23 degrees of Capricorn, which in Astrology is called a conjunction.
The Sabian Symbol for 23 degrees of Capricorn is: “Two Awards for Bravery in War” and we can use this symbol to unlock the deeper meaning behind this alignment.
Before we can understand what the Sabian Symbol may be trying to show us, we first have to understand the Saturn-Pluto Cycle.
The Saturn-Pluto cycle begins when they come together at the conjunction point, reaches a high point of clarity at the opposition point (this is when Saturn and Pluto are lined up directly opposite each other), and then enters a waning period when the ‘fruits are harvested’ and its meaning is revealed more fully.
One way to see this cycle is as a dance between the unstoppable forces of evolution (Pluto) and our human attempt to offer some resistance to it by trying to maintain the moral authority of law and order (Saturn).
To gain insight into what we may expect during 2020, we can look back to the Saturn-Pluto cycles of the past and see what was occurring at the conjunction point (beginning) and the opposition point (peak).
The Saturn Pluto Cycle of 1947
In 1947, Saturn and Pluto were conjunct bringing the start of a new cycle.
During this period, both Saturn and Pluto shaped the technological, economic and political era that followed, for example- the CIA, computers and the International Monetary Fund all began and, more dramatically, the Cold War between The Soviet Union and the West was first identified and named.
In 1965, the opposition point of this cycle occurred, and we saw the conservative forces of law and order face off against the powerful push of historical change.
Teenagers challenged their parents’ norms of acceptable behavior and also claimed great economic clout. It was the era of sex, drugs and rock ‘n’ roll. The political stage was also overturned, following civil disobedience in the USA and Russia in support of human rights and against the Vietnam War.
Technology also moved up a notch with the start of the use of the microchip: Electronics!
By the end of this Saturn-Pluto cycle, we had moved from the Industrial Age to the Information Age.
The Saturn Pluto Cycle of 1983
The last Saturn-Pluto cycle began in 1983. During this period, we saw the introduction of the crack cocaine business, whose dark influence and financial implications were so unthinkably significant that in time it became a threat to national governments.
We also saw technology, economics, and politics acting in unison to set the pace for the dot-com boom.
The opposition point of this cycle occurred in 2001, where we saw the horrific events of 911. This created a huge ripple not only in the United States but around the world, resulting in many security changes and the “War on Terror”.
From looking at these two past cycles, we repeatedly encounter the relationship between Saturn and Pluto expressed in events that demonstrate how the structures of civilization are eventually no match for the relentless imperatives of change.
So, what can we expect now? How might the 2020 conjunction affect us personally?
During the next year or so we must surely see (though barely understand) new initiatives and events that represent an attempt to control the uncontrollable (Saturn versus Pluto).
Pluto is mostly unconscious – who could have predicted the significance of the Cold War in 1947 or, in 1983, what crack cocaine would lead to?
Pluto will have its way, and the best we can hope for is that we can limit the consequences by learning something of what it is teaching us.
What Saturn-Pluto issues are likely to feature in next year’s headlines? Perhaps these, and certainly others:
- Climate change
- Extremes of political authority
- Invasion of privacy
- Oil and water shortages
- China’s economic expansion
- 5G technology
Whether or not we trace the connection to our personal lives, these are the underlying driving forces that we are all subject to.
We will find ourselves representing either Pluto’s power to change or Saturn’s will to control things. Or even both in the same day – as parental authority figures to our kids, and perhaps as intensely confrontative rebellious employees to our tyrannical bosses!
This brings us back to the Sabian Symbol for the conjunction: Two Awards for Bravery in War.
You can read more in more detail about the meaning of this Sabian Symbol on my website, but in essence, this shows how society has, and fulfills, its duty to recognize outstanding service.
The hint here is that these are times when the need arises for exceptional service. What we may hope for is that certain people step up and, at some personal cost, are willing to confront injustice. We may trust they will be rewarded for doing so.
The last cycle of Saturn-Pluto was very clearly brought to a head by the World Trade Centre atrocity and as another begins, that cycle is now ending.
Did we learn whatever we were being prompted to learn? Who can say?
The Sabian Symbol for that event was: “A Widow’s Past Brought to Light”, which is very much to do with dealing with unresolved issues from the past.
Each of us has that to do on every level, and the Saturn-Pluto conjunction will expose the extent to which we have not yet done so.