Notes On Alchemical Psychology* is a series of texts dedicated to personal creative therapeutic work, merging the old ways & the new. This one is an astrological musing, inspired by the ripeness of this alchemical moment in time, that of the Great Conjunction falling on Solstice hour.
There’s a potent celestial event occurring today, the winter Solstice illuminating the meeting of Jupiter and Saturn in Aquarius, a conjunction of planetary bodies visible in the night skies. For the next 200 years, Jupiter and Saturn will meet only in Air signs. These clusters of Great Conjunctions mark the beginning and the end of elemental eras, and we are leaving the epoch of the Earth element behind – the imperial realm, ground territory, long-term plans, secure employment, predictability.
Cosmos, loving a good pattern, always offers a bit of an overlap in the crossover period, and so it was with the preliminary conjunction of these two societal planets in Libra, a Venusian cardinal air sign, in 1980-1981, the start of the decade which gave us techno revolution, peak cyberpunk, the New Wave, Wall Street hyperactivity, the fall of the Berlin Wall, asymmetrical haircuts, gender fluidity, big shoulder pads, and the home computer. Tragically, it also witnessed the emergence of AIDS, which redefined our intimacies.
When you think of the next huge chunk of time, think how that jump to the other side felt, late 1970s to early 1980s, if you were there – the colourful novelty of it all, the techno-arrogance, symbiotic gadgetry, amorous dystopianism, existential dread, a looming emotional and physical disconnect, and of course, the allegorical stone-cold heart of Orwell’s 1984.
Saturn is about structure, Jupiter is our core beliefs. Saturn contracts things, Jupiter expands them. Saturn knock us down, Jupiter helps us rise. They are, seen from a somewhat uncomfortable angle, the good cop/bad cop of the Solar system. Neither can work well without the other. The Solstice gives us at least some illumination of this dynamic which is meant to shape our human experience, if not our fates.
No matter how this conjunction, which is exact today, hits our charts (if we know our charts), if it activates a natal planet or two, or it does not, if we take astrology seriously, or think it’s a lark (or worse, a sham) – we still live in this Solar system, on this Earth, in this world – and relate to it.
Let’s take this moment to think about what we truly believe in – how we structure our life to uphold these core beliefs. Where our own system is corrupt, where it fails us, where it fails others. What are the healthy parts of us, and where our delusions dwell? Do we uphold the societal order, or do we seek to transform it? Do we believe in that order, or are just comfortable following it? Do we keep our beliefs to ourselves, or prefer to also impose them on others? For the greater good, or because it’s the rules? What is the greater good, according to our own beliefs? Do we trust authority to bestow the greater good on society? What is authority, for us? Do we believe the information institutional authorities offer us? All the time, some of the time, none of the time? How do we keep whoever has authority over us in check? How do we keep ourselves in check when confronted with the beliefs of others? Do we burn or build bridges? What are our ways of bringing structures down if they fail our core beliefs? Where does our personal power lie when stuck within the networks of societal power we do not trust?
Who are we, really, when left with nothing but an expansive spirit in a contracting body, with no societal network to rely upon?
This line of soul-searching might keep us in a steadier balance when the fixed Aquarian air hits in 2021, and suddenly we feel we have no boundaries, at all, yet are firmly bound by something entirely invisible. A mechanical ghost in the thick Aquarian fog.
Because what Saturn really likes, other than to build, is to control, and it is now in its other domicile, Aquarius – its first being Capricorn. It spent almost two years feeding the Goat, readying us up with retro vibes, finally meeting with Pluto, the (dark) Lord of Transformation, rendering Saturn’s natural authoritarian tendencies shady in the absolute (Saturn/Pluto conjunction hit us 12 Jan 2020). This Behemoth of a totalitarian symbiosis, last seen in the 16th century as such, brought a pestilence as if straight from the medieval past, but also a world in full-on feudal mode. Think top of the pyramid sucking up vast wealth from below, in the dark of the night, while the entire globe is in quarantine.
Jupiter was there in Capricorn too, throughout the year, in its planetary fall, so its philosophical, optimistic, bountiful nature could not help us. In truth, it was expanding the darkness.
In 2020 we saw what our world looks like shred of our core beliefs, relying on its structural (Saturn) and survivalist (Pluto) reactions to a catastrophic necessity.
So, Capricorn likes all the old stuff, Aquarius, on the other hand, likes all the new stuff. Saturn, the Master Builder, prefers things as it sets them up to be, is no fool, and rules them both. Out of a dogma of the past, we move to a dogma of the future. Get ready to hear from every screen and source how things will be, from now on, without fail – the future an unchangeable knowable, fixed and perfectly formed at the moment of theoretical conception. Aquarius has a haughty ideological side in the shadow of the idealistic, revolutionary one. Every sign has a inbuilt fail. We are human.
However, the Archangelic Jupiter is not in fall, anymore. Assisting the Lord of Time, Saturn, in a good mood in its realm, now looking forward, and not back, they help us form a solid backbone, even as the ground we stand on shifts.
In conclusion, stargazers, don’t be fooled by all the shiny new dots in the sky. These are not stars. They are satellites.
But if you figure out what you stand for, within, you’ll be able to tell the difference. Easily.
© Milana Vujkov
*NB These notes follow a personal journey, and are offered as philosophical & creative inspiration. Although I am a psychologist by education, the material within them is not therapy or substitute for therapy. However, they are dedicated as temenos for accessing the therapeutic numinous, in hope of being of good service to your soul in exploring the potentials of each moment in time.
Astrology is a field I’ve been studying for thirty years, an entire Saturn cycle. Although it was a part of my life for this long, and subtly informed a great many areas of my personal philosophy, it never took full centre stage, yet was always in the wings, helping me figure out how to fly. When I think about the world now, it helps me to consider it in astrological terms, allowing for a comprehensive symbolic scope, a framework for a freedom of expression, a way to communicate in uninterrupted lyrical flow on societal topics that interest me. A poetic stellar licence in assessing the current moment in troubling times, if you will, one which is difficult to find in any other (politicised) modality. My musings are a sum of knowledge of a great many teachers, old and new, a lineage of wisdom I was lucky to have received and am lucky to pass on, in my own philosophical (re)interpretation, thus these words should be taken more as a (hopefully) thought-provoking piece of astro writing or astro mapping , less as an astrological forecast.