SATURN & THE MOON
-by Joyce Hoen DF Astrol S-
(First published in Kosmos International, summer '97, a publication of ISAR)
To understand the Moon/Saturn aspect there are two considerations to make, the first one being: what is Saturn's function in a chart, and how does it relate to the whole of the birthchart and its symbols, and secondly, when we have figured this out, how would this then interface with the Moon, when Saturn aspects the Moon in a birthchart?
So, let's start with the Moon. In my view, the Moon mirrors our relationship to the planet Earth no less. It is through the womb that we enter this world, it is through the Moon that our etheric bodies find physical substance, it is through the Moon that we take part in the instinctual heritage of our human race, the instincts to be part of humanity. In the animal world, we find that young animals will almost immediately have access to certain capacities that we term 'instinctual', i.e. young birds instinctually know that they have to learn to fly, that this is what their primary capacity in this world is all about. And so it is with human beings -- when we enter this world, we will instinctually react in certain ways, biologically so at first, emotionally later that both have collective as well as personal roots: the specific family and culture we are born into, and with which we osmose, then the family -- all qualities that we will take into ourselves, at least those qualities that we will automatically feel attracted to or think we need. To live on this planet, we need a lot of things. We need physical sustenance, we need emotional nurturing, we need to feel wanted, we need to feel protected. All this belongs to the Moon. In occultism the Moon is in fact the 'mother' of this planet Earth, it is the realm where souls often will abide in between births, and it may in this sense represent the 'astral' realm. It also represents the past very often, in that sense, that the Moon will provide us with behavioral traits that will be stored in that part of us where we can draw upon instinctually, without thinking, and in this sense the Moon will relate very much to our needs for plain physical and emotional survival on this planet Earth. For instance, someone born with the Moon in Aries, might find out very early in life that the Mother, the first entity that will reflect 'this planet Earth' for us, will only feed us or pay attention to us, when we start to shout. So, a person with Moon in Aries might, once it has discovered this, start to yell each time it thinks it needs attention, and in this way a pattern is created. Thus the Moon creates patterns that will make us feel comfortable, that will give us the nurturing we need in order to grow into an entity that could be termed: a human being alive on this planeet Earth. Yet the 'aliveness' referred to here, is not an aliveness that is awake, sparkling, alive and open to experience, the world 'alive' is used here in the sense of our physical and emotional needs being met. Often, in fact, these patterns arising from our needs, will at one point or another deaden is, making us fall asleep in routine behaviours rather than being 'really' alive. But the Moon will represent, in any birthchart, how we can sustain ourselves, how we can remain functional, so 'alive' in the sense of having our needs met, alive in the sense of the formation of a personality through which the energies of Spirit may eventually work. The Moon will represent our personality, and the physical and emotional NEEDS of that personality within the world, within the collective, within the family we are born into. It would be interesting here to realize that the way we relate to our own bodies, our mother, our family, our homes, and our cultures, is in fact representative of the way we relate to the planet Earth as a whole, and this is why I feel the Moon reflects each person's relationship to the planet as a whole.
A Moon in Scorpio might for instance view this world with a very suspicious attitude, as if everything in the world, starting with the principle of the Mother (the entire planet Earth being our Mother) wants to have us out of here, wants to move us to 'the other side', in contrast with a Moon in Taurus, who might feel very comfortable and safe 'on this side' of life, on this planet, enjoying natural cration just as it is, and in fact, not feel too comfortable at all to move beyond.
In sum, the Moon is representative of our NEEDS, orur very personal needs, to live on this planet Earth. Love, expressed on this level, will often be a love that arises because we feel our personal needs are being met.
Someone born with an aspect between Moon and Jupiter will find him/herself very much at ease on this planet, his or her needs are being met (comparatively) easy (not speaking about the deeper soulneeds here); a Moon/Jupiter person usually radiates a lot of self-confidence, the exact opposite of a Moon/Saturn person who will usually be self-conscious, and not so confident at all. Jupiter and Saturn indeed are opposites, and are functions in the birthchart that deal with our social surroundings. Jupiter will be the funtion that will give the person the message of outer success: "Yes, you are welcome here", Saturn will do the opposite, and give us the message: "No, not good enough, start again or come back at a later time!" If this is so, and if we combine this function of Saturn with the Moon, we will as personalities consistently feel that we receive messages from the outer world which will say: "No, your needs cannot be met right at this moment, come back at a later time, we have no time for you right now." This will set up a feeling of inadequacy, of not being worthy to have one's needs met, and thus ambition is born. The ambition of being worthy of something, in order for our needs to be met eventually, in order for us to stop feeling so hungry on the inside.
Now, why should such a planet exist at all in the universe? Why would people go hungry? Either literally, or emotionally? Why do we have to feel so alone so very often and not have these very basic needs met?
Imagine someone about to leave this planet , this physical existence, to move forth to the astral realms and beyond, to another existence, to a new reincarnation. At the moment of departure from this life this person will finalize a particular existence, and imagine the chart of this person to have been a chart with Uranus conjunct Neptune in the 4th house. It might have been a wandering existence, an existence where the person tried to break free of all kinds of limitations and bondings, flee home, and maybe this person is leaving this planet at a particular moment in time where Saturn transits this conjunction. Images of the past will come back, and maybe, when the state of consciousness slowly moves more and more to the level of the Soul, this person might all of a sudden realize how he or she forgot about his or her family, not taking care. Rightly or wrongly, the soul within might 'think' : "I have no more time now to make this right, I am leaving this planet, but really, I ought to have done this or that, and should not have done this or the other. The person judges him/herself, and his/her life from the level of the soul, and immediately the need for a new life is born with this judgment. Reincarnation occurs because of both unfulfilled wishes as well as unfulfilled tasks, tasks that may be imaginary or real, but tasks that we think we should have done better. We have disapproved of something in our lives and want to make up for it. Because the soul knows it cannot go on, it cannot be free, until it has satisfied its own conscience. (These are the kind of motions we go through when moving through 'dark nights of the Soul' - this judgment of ourselves and all the consequent energies released at such times do not only occur during the passage of one life to another, they also occur during the passage of one stage of life to the next, in fact, everywhere where one could speak of rebirth).
At any rate, in the next life of this imaginary example, this person might be born with Moon conjunct Saturn in the 4th house, rather than with Neptune conjunct Uranus. What will happen, is that such a person will find disapproval of anything to do with nurturing on this planet all around not even realizing that the inner judgment from the finals of the past life has now, in this new life, taken form in the outer environment.
In fact, Saturn deals with 'disapproval from external authorities' in any given life, in any birthchart, and from this 'ambition' is born. The ambition to ultimately find approval for this sense of inadequacy that we feel deep within. So a life starts where we feel we need to do work with regard to 'mothering', 'nurturing', 'emotions'. This need comes from within. The rootcause of it was our own inner disapproval at the end of the previous life, but we will often think and experience the disapproval to have come from the outer environment, the home situation, as if we wanted to punish ourselves rather than forgive.
Each time we get rejected, it hurts. It hurts much deeper than the situation objectively calls for (usually), it hurts much deeper than what the other person is actually saying, and the fact that it hurts so deeply and sometimes even unconsciously so, is because something within ourselves is touched, and that something within is our own disapproval of ourselves within. With Saturn, we will NEVER find acceptance from anybody outside of ourselves, simply, because there is a part in us that does not believe it whatever the other person says. The Moon is a very needy part within ourselves, and may find itself unnourished continuously, all the time, and may feel itself guilty. All kinds of patterns might have arisen in this lifetime stemming from a sense of guilt (in fact, the guilt is from the commitment we made to ourselves at the end of that past life), so a person with Moon/Saturn might find itself continuously in situations where it takes responsibility for other persons (mothering others, in fact, mothering our own mother even), feeling undeserving of any attention him/herself, and only deserving attention and love when it would take up this responsibility. Such a person might in fact get many messages that he or she is loved, or it might find rejection time upon time again, no matter how hard he/she tries. In both cases, it doesn't matter, the need for approval will not be fulfilled. For the simple reason that this is not Saturn's function in the birthchart. Saturn will never operate as approval from external authorities, it IS SATURN's FUNCTION to make us turn within, to become our own inner authority, and to learn to approve ourselves. Yet, ultimately this may be even more difficult.
It is extremely difficult to 1) say to ourselves that maybe we did something wrong indeed, since the ego within us does not believe this in the first place (it is not the function of the ego), and 2) to approve of ourselves really, deep within, because it means we have to face this ego, and transcend it somehow or other..
Especially when we believe we are only our personalities, especially in cases, where our power comes from our positions in the outer world, especially in cases where we do not know that we are a Soul that HAS a worldy personality, where we think ourselves to be only that personality - it is very difficult to accept ourselves, to approve of ourselves, to understand that maybe, on the level of ego, we are just insecure and needy creatures. But: so what??? This is not whom we are in the first place, we are of Spirit, we are Soul, and realizing this will empower is to have a good look at the qualities of ego (Moon/Saturn) and understand that disapproval was maybe not such a bad idea after all. Who wants to be approved of qualities that are only temporary survival habits anyway? Who doesn't want to be valued for whom we really are?
To not digress any further, Saturn represents the function in our birthchart where we need to find inner approval, i.e. the turn within is to be made with this planet.
I once did a workshop with 10 participants who all had a Moon-Saturn aspect in their charts, and frankly, I was pretty shocked by the fact that the Moon-Saturn person may go on endlessly all throughout life, with all kinds of patterns that stem from this basic need of approval. One of the women in the group was born with the Moon in the 6th house in Pisces, opposite Saturn in the 12th. She was a schoolteacher, and 55 years of age when she participated in this workshop. Her mother had been ill all throughout her life, setting this person up to become a mother to her mother, with many unfulfilled needs of herself at the level of the 'child within'. This person mentioned that at 55 years of age she STILL had to take care of her mother (the sense of resonsibility that goes with the Moon/Saturn aspect).
So, I decided to create a kind of astrodrama and asked her to play the role of herself, as a schoolteacher, with a mother in a wheelchair in a home, being ill, unable to move around much. And the scene we would play would be a scene where she would have another set of responsbilities, making sure she could not take care of her mother, so the scenario for the play became a scenario full of meetings at the school, leaving her absolutely no time at all to take care of her mother. (By the way, I am of course not advocating that we do not take care of people in need, on the contrary, but I want to get down to our motivations of why we take care of other people, to see what is really happening here).
Anyway, it was quite remarkable to discover that this schoolteacher had in fact been in many such situations in her life already, having to attend to many meetings, but what happened, she said, was that her mother would simply phone her at the meeting and insist that she would come down the next day..... and... she would do it.
It is quite possible that this Moon/Saturn person has never felt any approval from her mother but only felt wanted and needed if she would be in the role of the responsible person, and thus a pattern is easily set into motion (of which she was hardly able to break free) creating a personality (Moon) that would continuously take care for someone else, not out of love for the other person, but in fact, out of feeling inadequate otherwise and maybe even guilty. With Saturn in the 3rd house, this may be towards a brother or sister, with Saturn in the 6th this may be at the workplace. Moon aspecting Saturn in the 8th house also often give patterns of people that continuously worry over others, as if they feel they have no right to exist otherwise.
What it all comes down to, (and I hope I am not sounding too uncompassionate), is that we have disapproved of ourselves in a prior life. If we could figure out that our ego's are co-workers with our souls and not entities by themselves that have any right to approval or security in the first place, if we could be this honest with ourselves and let go of the need for approval from others, and just do what we have to do from within, and then in cooperation with the Soul - with Love, we wouldn't feel so burdened. This is the path of the Moon/Saturn person, the path of the Moon being the Disciple of the Soul in this world (Saturn).
If I take care of someone else out of a sense of guilt, and keep doing so until I am a hundred years old (Saturn-qualities tend to take 'time'....) I do not realize that in fact the soul of the other person will find relief, and so will my soul, if I would break this negative pattern of bondage.
Obviously there are many other ways to experience the Moon/Saturn aspect, and much could be written about how we deal with children born with this aspect who are dependent on external authorities, but the basic idea is simply this: Saturn at one time or another in this lifetime should turn around from the need of external approval to the inner knowing, the inner authority and conscience, and, in the case of the Moon/Saturn aspect this would mean no longer acting from a need that will constrict and narrow our consciousness, that will never go fulfilled on the outer level anyway - nor acting out of a sense of guilt. We all were guilty yesterday. So what. Today is a new day, and acting from within to without, rather than RE-acting to the outer world, we can take care with love, with really caring. In all cases were Time has just made things into a pattern, a routine that we feel guilty to break free from for fear of rejection, we are in fact inviting rejection from our Soul, time upon time again.