Much of astrology is based on practices and traditions that are hundreds of years old. Since then, much has changed, but those changes have been able to be layered on top of the traditions. In the tradition, every planet was said to be either in rulership, exaltation, detriment or fall in a particular sign. This determines their relative strength or weakness in those signs.
One traditional rulership I have had issues with understanding has been Saturn’s exaltation in Libra. Libra, ruled by Venus, is supposed to be (amongst other things) about the ideal of love, romance and beauty. Saturn provides limits and commitments, rules and boundaries. So how does Saturn, who has rulership in ambitious Capricorn and detached Aquarius find himself a welcome guest in the home of Libra?
I have just finished reading Elizabeth Gilbert’s Committed a sort of sequel to Eat Pray Love. In this book, she examines commitment and, in particular, marriage- the traditional and cultural reasons, the political or religious reasons and reasons why she should jump into another one.
Towards the end of the book she makes the observation that “love limits, almost by definition. Love narrows. The great expansion we feel in our hearts when we fall in love is matched only by the great restrictions that will necessarily follow.”
She goes on to say that when we are in a relationship, no matter how easy going it may be on the surface, we claim that other as our own and therefore have “fenced him off from the rest of the herd. His energies (sexual, emotional, creative) belong in a large part to me, not to anybody else- not even entirely to himself anymore. He owes me things like information, explanations, fidelity, constancy and details about the most mundane little aspects of his life…And I belong to him, in exactly the same measure.”
This is Saturn in Libra. The partnership ratified, with rules and structures. The marriage contract, the business contract, the wedding ring. Yes, the wedding ring, the symbol of this structure.
Don’t get me wrong, I believe in the structure of partnership. The boundaries we put around our relationships- both business and personal- are what allow those relationships to grow and mature…two more Saturn words.
Reading this was like a light bulb going off in my head…this is why Saturn is exalted in Libra. Simple really.
Anyways, by midday Monday (Sydney time) Venus will be back in the sign she rules, Libra. She will stay in Libra until the end of November.
During her retrograde through Scorpio, questions have been asked, motives investigated and money and power issues examined. This pattern will continue for the next week or so- until Venus turns direct on or around 18/11.
The difference now is one of re-balancing or re-moderating, re-calibrating. The energy is still internal as Venus is still in retrograde, but it is very different.