As I prepare to write this, I’m just reading about Lee Thompson Young’s possible suicide. I’ve seen his face, but I don’t really know who he is. I’ve not seen his shows or movies. All I know was that he was young, 29; having his Saturn Return; and an Aquarian Sun who may have gotten a little too tired from the TWO Aquarian full moons we’ve had in the last month. (We’re due another one tomorrow.) Full moons light things up, and maybe it just highlighted too much for him.
Astrologers make a swirl of romance around full moons, of which I’ve been guilty too. We wrap our proclamations of fulfillment during full moons heavy in optimistic gossamer, thick only by how much we wrap, not how much is really there. We seem to give cart blanche and ferocious power to any intentions “planted” at the new moon with the hope of a glorious transfiguration at the full moon. We know well how to get people to drool for fruit at the full moon as if the Garden of Eden itself would globally de-cloak and tempt us once again with its long-lost yield. Well, what happens when it’s time for the fruit and it’s all too much…or too little? I don’t hear as much about those things.
I was in Philly this past weekend for the NCGR Astrology Conference and yesterday I gave a short lecture on two bogeymen in astrology: Mercury Retrogrades & Void Moon Of Course. I happened to mention a few bogeys at the start of the lecture; one of them was the Saturn Return. I haven’t written as much on the Saturn Return as the Jupiter Return, because there’s a lot written about it out there already. Maybe I’m even saving more of my ideas for my own book. But the Saturn Return is a definitely a kind of harvest, though not exactly a full moon. But the symbolism still fits. Saturn Returns and full moons could lead to hard turns of life when the harvest and fruits don’t line up with what we expect. And therein lies the rub.
The 1st Saturn Return (as there are possibly 3 in a modern lifespan) at 29-30 represents where Saturn comes back to his original position in your chart, seeking a return on investment from all that your community and society has made into you. He will exact this ROI out of you for the next 29-30 years until the next return when he will more seek more for YOU, from your life experience dividends from the 1st Saturn Return, to make an investment in the society and community that has made you.
Similarly, the Full Moon reflects a moment where the intentions that had been planted or invested at the new moon are prompted to surface and come to light. Another way I talk about it is that if you were planning a party at the new moon, then the full moon would represent the moment when you actually have the party.
So what if your party sucks and you don’t feel you can make good on that return on the investment that your community’s put in you? That’s a real thing. I’m not going to pretend I can counsel folks through a blog post, but here are 3 things to think about:
1. Look at what your expectations and what fuels them.
When it’s time for things to come fruition, either by full moon or a Saturn Return, it’s a good time to look at whether your expectations were real or the remainder of childhood aspirations or another ill-developed notion. If you were all hot to be POTUS by 30 and that’s unrealized, then you were in lalaland for real. You can’t even be POTUS until 35, so you were trippin’. However, you could be on the road to becoming POTUS and to figuring out what trajectory works for you by looking at historical examples and making creative inferences.
Between a new moon and a full moon is about 2 weeks. That’s a pay period for a lot of people. If you had visions of moving into a palatial apartment, per your new moon intention, then, unless you’re getting a palatial check at the next pay period, you shouldn’t expect a palatial apartment at the full moon. What might be more reasonable is to stock away some money to SAVE for palace in the not too distant future, we hope. Or you figure out where you want to build your palace or find it. The key thing is to have measurable outcomes and goals. Lunar periods are a little short for long-term goals.
2. Use check points as indicators for how things are going.
Before you get to a full moon, there’s a 1st quarter moon to accelerate your efforts & new plans and there’s a gibbous moon (the 3 day phase just before the full moon) to see how well you’re prepared. With the Saturn Return, there’s the Saturn opposition at 14 years old and the Saturn square at 21-22 years old to see how things are shaping up. You are likely to encounter similar themes and issues that will surface again at the Saturn Return. There’s thematic DNA throughout all phases of a cycle, whether we’re talking about a new/full moon or a Saturn Return per your original Saturn. You can get a sense of the themes at different checkpoints of time to see how things are progressing…or not. You can use them to measure and evaluate your expectations, to see if you have what you need to manifest your intentions and have more of the harvest you desire.
3. You are not in this alone. Ask for and be open to help.
I don’t know, at all, what was going on in Lee Thompson Young’s life. I’m sad that this morning his landlord went to his apartment and found him alone in his apartment, dead, because he felt like he had no other options but to end his own life. I stopped judging suicide long ago, regardless what people in my Islamic faith say about it. I believe very much in “letting” God be God, so I let the Beloved judge. (Takes a lot pressure off, you know.) However, I do know as someone who’s gotten past his 1st Saturn Return that how you think of your life at 29-30 is not how it is or how it will be. That’s kind of the point, actually. There’s a death that can happen and a different rich harvest that can follow. A Saturn Return is when you live enough of your life to bump against yourself, learning your limits. Afterwards, you can re-calibrate how to work with those limits to extract more out of yourself to match expectations culled from your living, not just your mind in theory or someone else’s expectations. You’ll know enough of what’s true for your life from just having lived a little more of it. If you get lost in your own maze of living, this is when you can solicit friends or counselors for help. Or if you know someone feeling suicidal, even someone you’ve never met, you can find help here.
A similar thing to think about at a full moon. When a full moon doesn’t match the high hopes and intentions you had prior, be open to getting help or cultivating ideas from others for the next cycle. Waiting 29-30 days to bring another cycle of manifestation forward is a lot easier than 29-30 years with a Saturn return.
When I wrote the horoscopes below, I had more of the full moon and the superior conjunction of Mercury and the Sun in mind. Interestingly, the Superior Conjunction on Saturday I’ve described as a full moon for Mercury, with the inferior conjunction as the new moon. It signifies a time when Mercury, being in the bosom of the Sun, receives higher directions and insights. The inferior conjunction is when we have to surrender our outworn ideas and hang-ups to prepare for fuller, more illumined ones. I hope these horoscopes (and this post) help with that.