Relationships: Part IV by Ed Kahout
In the last installments of “Relationships,” we looked at how the five inner planets work in theory.
The next step is to explore the four outer planets and how they play out astrologically with the other planets. Jupiter and Saturn are known as “gas giants”, while Neptune and Uranus are “ice giants.” Remember that the four major polarities in the system are:
As we move beyond the “personal” inner planets and learn about the outers, we are moving into the realm of the “collective,” as the outers have periods that span longer waves. If we look at how long every planet takes to traverse the entire zodiac, the Moon clocks in at a tad over 27 days, the Sun one year, Mercury and Venus about one year, and Mars two years.
Jupiter has a period of ~12 years and Saturn ~30, thus a much slower grind, though both planets can complete more than one orbit in the lifetime of a human being. Note that 12 and 30 are basic components of the zodiac with 12 signs of 30° each.
Jupiter and Saturn, being the largest planets, pretty much “run the show” in terms of the energetic momentum of the solar system. They comprise about 92% of the mass of the system besides the Sun, and shepherd the orbits of the other planets.
Jupiter, being much larger than Saturn, could be thought of as the “flywheel” of the system. The Earth and Jupiter are actually the most “tuned” in this scenario – every 83 years, the Earth and Jupiter will return to the exact same place in the zodiac, with an aggregate error of only about one arc-minute, or 1/60th of a degree.
As luck would have it for life forms, Jupiter is also known as the “greater benefic,” being known through the ages as the planet of luck, increase, profit, and good feelings. Jupiter, in my opinion, rules over evolution itself.
Saturn, on the other hand, has the opposite effect, being about restriction, limitations, and basically every misfortune known to us.
It’s the difference between joviality and saturnine. But, the fact is that we need this polarity to have a balanced existence. It can’t all be free-spirited good times, and it can’t all be depression and misery.
In successful relationships, we need both good feelings and some kind of structure. A marriage contract is Saturnian, as it is essentially a limiting document, but those limits are supposed to be wise guidance to long-term bliss.
Saturn is “the law,” where Jupiter is the philosophy behind the law. Jupiter is the promise, but Saturn is the boundaries.
Therefore, a quality relationship will need to have both Jupiter and Saturn working somewhat evenly in the synastry [astrological study of how two or more charts interact].
When one person’s Jupiter aligns with another person’s personal planets, the result is always a heartfelt connection, where the Jupiter person wants to give to the other and the other person is highly receptive. This is essential for relationships to thrive.
When a person’s Saturn aligns with another person’s personal planets, the result is often that the other person feels restricted and “bossed around” in that area of the life. The Saturn person tends to be the “rule maker,” and expects the other person to heed those rules.
Politically, liberals tend to be Jupiterian (more freedoms!), and conservatives tend to be Saturnian (law and order). The trick is to find the right balance.
As such, it seems easy to assign Jupiter a nurturing feminine polarity and Saturn the disciplinary masculine. If our patriarchal Western culture has taught us anything, it is a Saturnian construct, where men force their way into everything, and women are often marginalized.
Gender roles in a marriage were always geared this way too, with masculine dominance and feminine acquiescence. Down in reality, however, we can see that the partner with the stronger Saturnian position will end up calling the shots.
If the two inner planet polarities line up well between two charts, there will be some great basic attraction, but we have to look at the outer planets to find out if the situation can move beyond gonads and into healthy interdependency and not a dysfunctional codependency.
As always, consult your astrologer for (hopefully) a more expert opinion, but in general, if you are learning astrology, it’s a good idea to look at some basic principles. A partner’s Saturn being “on” your expressive planets is a tricky situation that requires some real patience and adaptivity. Without a good Jupiter connection to offset that, it can be a depressing long haul of a relationship.
Conversely, too much Jupiter and not enough Saturn can have it’s own pratfalls, as structure may never be easily understood and the ability to plan is often farcical. We need some Saturn in there to get our heads out of the clouds.
If there is one scenario to treat with serious care, or avoid altogether, it is one person’s Saturn on the other’s Moon. Such situations are almost always depressing for the Moon part of the equation. Saturn doesn’t care much about your feelings, and the Moon is so changeable that it doesn’t much care about your rules.
Then again, this can be a “grounding” conduit for a lunar type with no direction.
Finally, because Jupiter and Saturn are major cultural influencers, the midpoint of both, which we call JU/SA, has the potential to bestow fame and notoriety. If you are wondering why Justin Bieber is so popular with the youngins even though it sounds like garbage, look no further than your own withering JU/SA.
JU/SA helps with recognition within the generational collective. Also, JU/SA, if strong in a natal chart, will be concerned about the larger wellbeing of society, and can “tap into” the concerns and tastes of the zeitgeist.
In the next part of this series, we will look at Uranus and Neptune, and how they help us break out of the basic and more apparent reality around us. Jupiter and Saturn are basically “reality,” but the next two are all about us moving beyond that and into the future, as well as the infinity of our inner world.
I haven’t forgotten about Bennifer – but that will come when we attempt to synthesize all of the parameters I have laid out.
Ed has been practicing astrology for 25 years. His special area of interest is the history of astrology and mundane astrology. He is currently working on a book about the history of Mars from ancient times up to the present.
Relationships: Part IV by Ed Kahout