The Saturn-Uranus Square 2021-2022: A Breakthrough in Consciousness
Some thoughts on where we're at now and in 2022 inspired by the symbolism of the current Saturn-Uranus dance.
Saturn square Uranus: the Clash of the Titans
“London Calling” sang the Clash - a band borne out of the last waning Saturn-Uranus square, drawing their name from the riot headlines of the mid-70s. And here we are again.
Saturn squares Uranus throughout 2021 and remains active in 2022. This is a time of great instability at the social level.
Saturn signifies bondage and Uranus freedom. When the two clash, surprises and shocks are met by increasing controls. But the chains are often too tight and can have unforeseen, rebellious consequences.
This is a waning square. It’s about the end of something. The breakdown of existing structures making way for a brand new future that we can’t yet see.
Saturn represents the walls that hold us in place whilst Uranus the lightning bolt that strikes them down. Suddenly nothing is a given. Frantic measures are taken to keep things together. But it’s no good. Because this is the breakdown of a much bigger cycle, stemming back to the late 80s. And it’s time to let in the demolition team. The rug is pulled from under our feet, our fixed reference points disappear and we have to ask some uncomfortable questions.
Uranus and Saturn square three times in 2021. On the 17th February, 14th June and 24th December. Two are already past. And life has already taken crazy turns. But we have one final square coming up this Christmas Eve. And this one is a decider. This is the final nail in the coffin of all the things we used to take for granted. It’s the straw that breaks the camel’s back. If February was all about the shock of the new and June the moment we realise that there is no turning back, then Christmas Eve is when the demolition of the old order is complete. Ignore the temporary scaffolding… Welcome to the future!
This Saturn-Uranus square is a consciousness shift, an awakening on a mass scale. It symbolises a crisis of awareness, a breakthrough in our thinking.
And this would not have been possible had we been sitting comfy within Saturn’s now crumbling walls. What was once a life-sustaining set up is now a prison and we are called to break free. Cracks in our social structures precipitate cracks in old mental frameworks that are now past their sell by date. It’s the realisation that a lot of what we took as a given was but a mental construct, a story we bought into that’s optional, not all that necessary, permanent or even real.
Don’t be afraid of the chaos you see around you now. It’s time to embrace the unfamiliar. To practice the zen art of detachment. To break down to break through. It’s time to take the red pill.
And while the official Saturn-Uranus square goes out with a bang this Christmas - creating huge ripples over the next few months - it remains close throughout 2022 - especially in September-October - reminding us that the world is still in a very precarious place.
Saturn-Uranus Waning Square: Then… And Now…
The last time we had a waning square between Saturn-Uranus was in the mid-70s (1975), amidst inflation, social unrest, high taxes and union strikes. That signalled the breakdown of an old order (long now past), one that was seeded in the 40s and peaked in the 60s.
Before that, we had another waning square in the early 30s (1930-31) during the worst of the Great Depression. Again, not the best of times.
The Saturn-Uranus waning square is always a point of devolution.
And here we are today, in a post-financial-crisis world, in a (post-) Covid-19 world, when every cent that could be printed is printed, every penny that could be spent is spent, when western democracy is teetering on the edge.
The 2021-22 Saturn-Uranus square didn’t arrive in a vacuum of course. It comes right on the heels of the 2020 Pluto-Jupiter conjunction sowing such great seeds of fear as are still rippling through the world as we speak; right on the heels of the 2020 Saturn-Pluto conjunction, the main culprit of this unbelievable power-grab at the top, the mass transfer of wealth and increasing top down totalitarian controls on a scale previously unimaginable beyond an Orwellian dystopia or WWII documentary. The Saturn-Uranus square is all the more dangerous for that, as some take advantage of the present fear and chaos to push their own agendas. Thankfully history has a way of not taking human agendas very much into account. With the Great Saturn-Jupiter 2020 Conjunction in Aquarius also unfolding, there’s hope. Humanity, freedom and exciting new technologies can still walk hand in hand.
You can find out how the current Saturn-Uranus square affects you in your 2021 Horoscope, and check out my attempt to reframe the past few decades for each zodiac sign in light of the current Saturn-Uranus cycle. But first things first. Let's shed more light on the Uranus-Saturn cycle we’re now in.
Uranus-Saturn: The Pendulum of Progress (or Mad Genius!)
The Uranus-Saturn cycle (i.e. a full round of the major aspects between these two planets beginning with the conjunction) lasts 44-45 years.
This half-century cycle is the bell-hammer of progress and innovation. It is the dance that makes sure we never stay stagnant or fall asleep, but instead keep reinventing our socioeconomic and political structures.
Saturn-Uranus swings like a pendulum across the sky from one side of the zodiac to the other, plunging us forward in great big dramatic swoops. Behold:
We’re currently in a cycle that was seeded in Sagittarius in the late 80s. This launched a period of incredible (perhaps uncontrollable) financial growth and new frontiers in technology. The next cycle is arriving in 2032 right across from Sagittarius in Gemini, the sign of data and connectivity. Very apt for the blooming of the informational age.
Before that, the pendulum swung backward hitting Taurus in 1942. This marked a critical turning point for WWII, giving rise to the newly consumerist post-war era. The one before that was forward again in Scorpio seeded at the end of the 19th century. This was arguably quite a deadly, purgatory cycle that brought us two world wars and the communist revolution. Looking further still, we are back with Taurus and further still, we've a wonky swing to Libra, and so it goes. That's two luxurious Venus-ruled cycles spanning the Victorian era by the way.
See the swing? That's the hammer of social progress.
Each Saturn-Uranus conjunction is a seed of mad genius, which then rolls out into the world at key intervals. This is Saturn and Uranus keeping us on our toes, checking in with us every decade or so to make sure society hasn’t gone on autopilot.
Once the new seed is sown at the conjunction, we get the opening or ‘waxing’ square. This tests the newly seeded ideas against reality. Then comes the opposition, the manifestation of the seed-idea in all its glory and the revelation of its fruit (to be enjoyed over the next decade or so). And finally we have the closing or waning square, the rotting, deconstruction and devolution of the idea that’s now gone as far as it can, and the extraction of lessons. And that's where we are right now.
Our Current Saturn-Uranus Cycle Hails Back to the 80s.
We are currently experiencing the tail end (waning square) of the mad genius seed that was planted in Sagittarius back in February, June and October of 1988. Sagittarius is the sign of globalism and freedom, growth and profit, optimism, adventure and the expansion into new frontiers.
So, here we have the seeds of deregulation, globalism and free market economics, and the explosive growth of new technologies amid the birth of the World Wide Web. These are all inextricably linked, with tech developments a key component of the new free market global growth agenda.
Notably, the Saturn-Uranus conjunction of 1988 took place in the critical 29th degree of Sagittarius, bringing out Sagittarius’ dark side. This is Sagittarius the swashbuckling pirate. No wonder we have treated our world as if it were a foreign land to be plundered! This is Sagittarius the teller of tall tales. Sales, marketing, media… What stories have we swallowed wholesale? This is Sagittarius the cavalier profiteer. No wonder each point in the cycle has been marked by the bursting of a bubble. But there are no more bubbles to burst (bar one last big one perhaps!)…
There is something dangerous, unstable, compulsive here, at the last degree of Sagittarius - the seed of uncontrollable galivanting in the extreme. One last mad party before the check arrives.
So what bubbles were popped over the last two Saturn-Uranus points in our cycle?
At the opening square we had the dot com bubble of 1999-2000. That’s when the ideas of the conjunction (free markets and new tech) were tested in the real world.
Back then Uranus was in tech-sign Aquarius and Saturn in value-sign Taurus. What was being tested is innovative new tech and the testing ground was financial. Many tech companies were culled during that crisis so that our technological development could continue along more stable lines. Remember, that is the growing, constructive, action-oriented part of the cycle, the waxing square. Those were the early days.
At the next key moment, the Uranus-Saturn opposition point, we had the subprime mortgage bubble burst of 2008-2009.
Remember 2008? Two things happened there. Pluto passed over the last critical Sagittarius degree (the seed of our current paradigm) and entered Capricorn in short succession. (Pluto in Capricorn started spreading a deathly disease all over our political and financial systems from then on btw and they’ve been zombies ever since, feasting on the ever more meagre flesh of their citizens... But, in any case, Pluto should finish the job by 2023-24.).
Exactly at that point, in 2008-09, the Saturn-Uranus cycle also reached its peak opposition phase. The sub-prime mortgage bubble burst and the ensuing financial crisis was tackled through - yes - money printing on an unprecedented scale (Sagittarius’ solution to everything - just keep the party going, more more more!). The opposition also gave birth to Bitcoin - a direct backlash to that total lack of responsibility inherent in our current system (another dark side of Sagittarius) - and so Bitcoin is one to watch. It is, literally and ironically, the fruit of the free-market-new-tech economics that was seeded in the late 80s.
2008 also happened to launch a ten-year tech boom (equivalent to the roaring 20s and swinging 60s in previous cycles). That was the sharing of the fruit of the twenty years since inception, with tech companies that had survived the crisis of 1999-2000 now ready to reap huge financial rewards. With money printing also possible for the first time on an unprecedented scale, assets got their own bubble going, entire governments and populations took on the necessary risk, and the party went on for another decade or so, at least for some.
And now here we are at the closing square of 2021-22. Amid Covid madness, handouts and walkouts (people going “hold on, you mean this whole working for nothing malarky was optional?”), dystopian lockdowns and tracking apps, vaccination mandates and mass protests and, of course, the arrival of inflation - or is that stagflation or shrinkflation or is it a disguised deflation? I lose track. Whether or not we’re about to hear another bubble pop (and who’s to save us from that one), we’re still reeling from the deafening burst of a different kind of bubble. The illusion of constant financial growth is bust, the illusory carrot of a good life waiting on the far side faded, the story of the promised land that once had us in its grip now laid bare.
The financial and political ideology borne of the late 80s has now run its course and has nowhere left to go.
This is not a crisis of action but a crisis of realisation.
The Opening Square of 2000 versus the Closing Square of 2021 - a World of difference!
Contrast the Now with the turn of the millennium. Uranus and Saturn squared in 1999-2000 in the same signs, Taurus and Aquarius, only flipped: Saturn was in Taurus (as opposed to Aquarius) and Uranus was in Aquarius (as opposed to Taurus). What's more, that was a waxing square, the start of something new, this is a waning square, the end of something old...
Back then, there was a financial price to pay (Saturn in Taurus) for technological growth and development (Uranus in Aquarius). When we had the dot com bubble, Saturn was tasked with testing new tech against the reality of the markets in Taurus, whilst Uranus was busy reinventing our lives through technology in Aquarius. This was all part of a great forward momentum.
All we had in 2000 was a culling to aid further growth. But now the roles are reversed. With Saturn in Aquarius, today huge tech giants are the establishment. It’s not our technology being tested against the markets but our very society and democracy being tested against our established technological advances.
The tech world that once felt exciting now feels jaded, the early thrill all but gone, the terror of AI all too real, the consequences of global tech corporations in our daily lives all too palpable. The turn of the millennium was a time of test-runs and exciting beginnings. Now the moment has come to stop and think, to examine our values and principles against this new reality that we have already created.
Back then, we had unstable technology in a stable world. Now, it’s the world that is unstable, physically, financially and morally on the brink.
The Sagittarius party was fun while it lasted. We’ve had a good ride and we certainly made great, amazing and welcome strides. But we now need to sober up, understand the meaning of the journey and make some mature choices. As Saturn makes his way back toward Uranus over the next decade (til 2032), we’re ready to incorporate the lessons of the past 30+ years into our consciousness and pave the way for a new social and financial paradigm.
We’re at a crucial juncture.
Look to the Uranus-Saturn sextile of 2024-25 for an opportune time to implement what we’ve learned. That’s also when Pluto enters Aquarius for good (2024) - ‘hello AI-future’ and ‘vive la revolution!’ - and Saturn and Neptune conjunct in Aries (2025-2026), ending yet another major cycle seeded in early 1989 (which brought us the fall of the Berlin wall) and launching us into a truly brave and heroic new world.
Read all about the USA Pluto Return: The End of an Empire?
Next Uranus-Saturn Conjunction in Gemini 2032: What to expect?
So what’s the next cycle gonna be like? The next Saturn-Uranus conjunction is in 2032 at 28 Gemini (right across from Sagittarius - remember the pendulum swing?) Is this going to be a golden age of raised consciousness alongside AI, informational networks and instantaneous travel? With Pluto in Aquarius totally transforming our world (and our biology) through technology from 2023 to 2044, the next Saturn-Uranus conjunction will probably herald an age of information and connectivity unlike any we have ever seen before.
The Informational Age is about to be brought on a whole new level in 2032. Is this the end of the privacy of thought? Probably. But perhaps our thoughts were never really our own, never really all that private to begin with…
Saturn-Uranus (Cycle) Horoscope: Can we reframe our own experience of the past 30+ years using the Saturn-Uranus cycle?
Putting our life into a larger perspective always helps reframe it and imbue it with new meaning. We are often lost in minutiae, the whole thing compounded by the fact that we simply don’t live long enough to see the bigger picture. So let’s have some fun reconstructing it from first principles. Let’s see what this Uranus-Saturn cycle (that’s been going for over 30 years now) has meant for each star sign... (large ideas in small words).
Aries through the lens of Saturn-Uranus
The past 30+years were all about growth, learning, expansion and travel for you, dear Aries. This has culminated in great expertise on your part, and much excitement around your work and your overall lifestyle. What’s 2021-22 all about? Look back to the turn of the millennium. Back then you were working hard to build up your resources from scratch, whilst simultaneously being introduced to brand new and incredibly exciting circles. Now things are flipped. You are well established and respected in your circles but are experiencing financial instability. It’s time to totally revolutionise your values and innovate in how you earn a living. Work on that now and by the end of the decade you’ll be ready to share your ideas and connect with others on a whole other level, put your stamp on things and establish a veritable hub of connection and information.
Taurus through the lens of Saturn-Uranus
Shared resources and transformative encounters have been a key driver in your life for the past 30+years, dear Taurus. You have sought power, deep bonds and an understanding of the mysteries. And it is this kind of delving under the surface combined with the support of others that has seen your own creativity blossom. What’s 2021-22 all about? Look back to the turn of the millennium. Back then you were experimenting in your career and trying out different hats while also undergoing an identity crisis. Now you know more. It’s time to establish a solid career path and totally reinvent yourself in the process. Do so now and by the end of the decade, you’ll be ready to focus on your own talents and resources like never before, generating a new sense of confidence and personal worth.
Gemini through the lens of Saturn-Uranus
Relationships, dear Gemini - professional and personal - is what’s been making your world go round for the past 30+years. This is also what’s culminated in the career path you have chosen and even where you chose to live, giving you a sense of who you are deep inside. What’s 2021-22 all about? Look back to the turn of the millennium, which was an exciting time of discovery. You were a bit like a stranger in a strange land back then, still finding your feet. But now you are intellectually mature with much wisdom to share and you’ve got your finger on the pulse, channelling the zeitgeist! Keep up the good work and by the end of the decade, you’ll be ready to take charge and lead us all into a brand new informational era.
Cancer through the lens of Saturn-Uranus
The past 30+ years were all about work, dear Cancer. You’ve been hard at it and your productivity has never waned. This led you on an incredible journey of discovery where you met many people and learned many things. What’s 2021-22 all about? Compare now to the turn of the millennium, which was an exciting if unstable time financially, a time when you made important friends and established yourself in your circles. Now things have flipped. It is time to show financial maturity toward your commitments while you totally reinvent your friendships, revolutionise your dreams and establish an exciting social network that represents the world you want to live in. That done, by the end of the decade you’ll be ready to take a whole new spiritual approach to life.
Leo through the lens of Saturn-Uranus
Love, creativity and self-expression, that’s what the past 30+ years have been all about for you, dear Leo. And it’s all culminated in greater prosperity and deep intimate financial and emotional bonds with others. What’s 2021-22 all about? Back at the turn of the millennium, you were seeking total freedom in your relationships so you pursue your goals and establish a career path. Now the tables are turned. This is a time to experiment in your career and loosen up about your public image, while you behave maturely and responsibly in your relationships, which are now tested. This is good training and by the end of the decade you’ll be making new friends, linking with likeminded others and becoming part of a new and stimulating social network so you can effect change in the world.
Virgo through the lens of Saturn-Uranus
Your development over the past 30+ years has largely revolved around your roots, home and family, dear Virgo, and this has culminated in how you identify yourself today in relationship to others. What’s 2021-22 all about? Back at the turn of the millennium you were experimenting with different working lifestyles while your own life vision was still maturing. Now, it’s time to put in the hard work, build good habits and perfect your training because a whole world of possibility is opening up all around you. And by the end of the decade, you’ll be ready to come out of your shell, step into bigger shoes and pursue your vocation, entering exciting times for your career.
Libra through the lens of Saturn-Uranus
It’s your networking, curiosity and thirst for learning that’s defined the past 30+years for you, dear Libra. And your lifestyle, your notoriety and even your spiritual outlook are the direct result of that. What’s 2021-22 all about? If you look back, the turn of the millennium brought romantic adventures that either had serious consequences or came with strings attached. Now you’re called to reverse that trend, to deepen and mature your love muscle while experiencing greater financial and emotional freedom. Liberated like that, by the end of the decade, you’ll be ready for new adventures where you synthesise all you’ve learned and share your knowledge with others.
Scorpio through the lens of Saturn-Uranus
Making money has been a key driver for the past 30+ years, dear Scorpio. That led you to make many friends, take huge risks and, finally, receive your worldly rewards. What’s 2021-22 all about? Think back to the turn of the millennium. That was a testing time in your relationships while the rug was also being pulled from under your feet, leaving you without a solid base from which to operate. Now, by contrast, you are building a secure base for yourself with many responsibilities around home and family matters, and it is others who are being totally unpredictable all around you. By the end of the decade, you’ll be ready to join forces with powerful individuals, sponsors and partners, helping you make the most of your money, talents and resources.
Sagittarius through the lens of Saturn-Uranus
You’ve been leading the parade, dear Sagittarius, and the financial and technological developments of the past 30+ years have been right up your street. All this has culminated in key career choices, bringing you the kind of status you enjoy today. What’s 2021-22 all about? Looking back at the turn of the millennium, that was an exciting time of networking while you learned new tricks, trained and perfected your skills. Now, your routines are disrupted and you may even be feeling restless at work. It’s time to revolutionise your work and overall lifestyle whilst also striving to develop your own ideas and make your mark. By the end of the decade, it will be collaborations and partnerships that will hold the key to your future progress.
Capricorn through the lens of Saturn-Uranus
You’ve been secretly busy behind the scenes for the past 30+ years, dear Capricorn, perhaps playing puppet master in the great halls of power, or delving into the mystical realm and developing your spirituality. You have learned so much as a result, becoming an expert in your field and growing as a person too. What’s 2021-22 all about? Think back to the turn of the millennium, a time of great financial instability and sobering emotions, urging you to look at the contents of your heart for what makes you truly happy. Now, it’s time to let your fancies run away with you! If funds are limited it’s time to put your shrewd money management skills to good use so you can follow your heart and explore your creativity. By the end of the decade you’ll be ready for a whole new lifestyle, finding new ways to work and be of service.
Aquarius through the lens of Saturn-Uranus
Your friendships and desire to serve your community have driven you forward for the past 30+years, dear Aquarius, and that’s no surprise. This has led to serious commitments on your part, both emotionally and financially, as well as gaining you sponsors and supporters that helped you grow. What’s 2021-22 all about? Looking back at the turn of the millennium, it was an incredibly exciting time when you were reinventing yourself whilst also establishing a firm base of operations. Now you find your foundations shaken to the very core while you’re also called to redefine who you are, grow up some more and shoulder certain burdens. But worry not, you’re getting younger by the minute! By the end of the decade it will be time for you to shine, follow your heart and explore love and creativity.
Pisces through the lens of Saturn-Uranus
For the past 30+ years, you’ve been largely driven to achieve your worldly goals and elevate your social status, dear Pisces. That has led you to form key partnerships and revolutionised how you see yourself too. What’s 2021-22 all about? Back at the turn of the millennium, you felt restless and embarked on a steep learning curve to achieve greater influence over your environment. Now it’s time to let go of the past and allow your surroundings to surprise you. Open your mind to ideas you hadn’t considered before and let your old identity go. This will lead you to rediscover who you are at root by the end of the decade, establishing an exciting new foundation for your future endeavours.
Image by Chris Flexen from Unsplash
Article by YourAstroGenes