THE MAJOR ASTROLOGY OF 2021: THE SATURN-URANUS SQUARE
Updated: Jan 22, 2021
*A note on gender and planetary pronouns: The 7 classical planets have traditionally corresponded with either a masculine or feminine gender, with the exception of Mercury who is considered gender-fluid. It’s commonplace to use the pronouns He/Him for the traditionally masculine-corresponding planet Saturn, and I have in this article. As Uranus is known as the higher octave of androgynous Mercury, I have used they/them pronouns for Uranus. I want to acknowledge that Saturnian qualities do not have to be thought of as exclusively masculine, and Uranian qualities do not have to be thought of as androgynous or non-binary. If you want to use different pronouns for any planets, please feel free to do so!
CALLING YOU INTO ASTROLOGY
Astrology is just various combinations and layers of archetypal energies. It's not over your head. If you can add 2 variables together and imagine some possible outcomes, you can do basic astrology. Yes, you. And while there are a zillion variables and specifics to get into, the power of looking at the biggest most basic aspects should never be underestimated. If you're down, this is me calling you in on one of the bigger astrological pieces of 2021.
THE BIG ONES
I always pay a lot of attention to the bigger, slower planets because they are larger, more powerful forces exerting long term influence over our lives; the forces behind the deepest, slowest, most epic transformations. It's possible to see what's going on on a foundational level, underneath the many other faster-moving, more transient variables like new and full moons, or even zippy Mercury or Venus transits (typically a few weeks, peaking within a day or two), when an outer planet is in a sensitive spot in the sky - or on a sensitive spot on your natal chart - it's going to be there for longer than you can hide under the covers. Outer planets work deeply and there's no skirting the evolution.
THE BIG ONE OF 2021
Compared to 2020, the astrology of 2021 is a lot less overwhelming. This does not make it less significant. While there are some monumental shifts taking place with all this new Aquarian energy, there are less retrogrades and less challenging outer planet configurations to keep tabs on. Outer planet configurations - or the way the planets are angled to one another - can be thought of as grander, long term weather patterns that will permanently transform the landscape and its inhabitants. The biggest configuration of 2021 in my eyes is actually the Jupiter-Saturn Conjunction which actually happened on December 21st, 2020 - but whose influence has just begun and will play out strongly all year, as well as for decades and even centuries to come. (For a deeper-dive on this year's overall Aquarian-dominant theme, read my article on The Aquarian Shift & The Great Conjunction of Jupiter & Saturn.) After we orient ourselves to this new Aquarian landscape, there's a second major weather pattern playing out in 2021 that will have our attention: the Saturn-Uranus square.
SATURN SQUARE URANUS DATES
February 17th, 2021 at 7° 14' Aquarius/Taurus June 14th, 2021 at 13° 07' Aquarius/Taurus December 24th, 2021 at 11° 05' Aquarius/Taurus * They get close again in early October 2022, but will not form another perfect square
Here's a quick and fun little song mashup I made earlier (heads up: contains adult language) that shows how these energies might be at odds with each other in 2021:
This video is fun but super limiting and can never capture the full spectrum of these archetypes. Let's drop in:
A SIMPLE EQUATION
You can put these archetypes together like math. 1+1. Actually, with archetypes, it's more like adding colors together. Red + Blue = Purple. The exact shade of purple will depend on the precise shades and amounts of red and blue. How the purple will look will depend on its environment (the signs... we'll get to those). This is what astrologers do. While the timing is pure, numerical math and it is perfect (the dates above), the archetypes aren't perfectly or reliably quantifiable of predictable which is why we can never say for certain what will happen. But knowing the themes, and knowing when? I'm here for it. You are just as capable of putting this together as I am, and you may even see things I don't.
Let's check the planets out.
SATURN ENERGY: THE REALITY SANDWICH 🥪
From my earlier Saturn Class article:
"Rome wasn't built in a day." - or - "Clean it up." 🧽🧼🧹
MEDICINE: Perseverance 💪🏽
SONG: Like A Rock - Bob Seger
NOTE: Saturn is "dignified" in the sign of Aquarius. This means he is in one of his home signs, making him strong and very capable of accomplishing his agenda (bringing about the things he wants to bring about).
URANUS ENERGY: THE LIGHTNING BOLT
From my earlier Uranus Class article:
"Breakdown to breakthrough." ⚡ - or - "Surprise!" ⚡
MEDICINE: Innovation 🔭
SONG: The Times, They Are A-Changin' - Bob Dylan NOTE: Uranus is not at home in the stable earth sign of Taurus. Modern astrologers who consider Uranus to be the ruler of Aquarius (I don't) would say Uranus is in "fall" or exile in the sign of Taurus. It's a harder place for Uranus to be.
Now that we know about Saturn and Uranus...
WHAT'S A SQUARE?
Squares = tension & conflict. A square is a 90 degree angle between two planetary bodies. There are waxing and waning squares depending on which part of a greater planetary cycle we're in (we're in a waning one), and for those who want to go into the history of Saturn-Uranus 45-year cycle to see the longer arc of this story, there is an article here which gives quite a lot of historical information. For our purposes today, let's just call a square a square :)
The difference between a square and an opposition - another aspect of conflict when two planetary bodies are 180 degrees apart (directly opposite each other) - is that with an opposition, you can clearly see the thing you're at odds with. It's right across from you, and right in your way. With a square, you cannot, though you may be able to see it or sense it out of the corner of your eye. So squares can feel just as harsh but be harder to put your finger on. Sometimes they denote internal challenges or blockages rather than concrete enemies or oppositions in the external world. With two things at odds, something's eventually gotta give to move forward.
With these longer transits we almost always get 3 exact squares due to planetary retrograde activity, so sometimes it's like rough edges being sanded down. Other times, the "give" is more of a pop. Either way, there will be change and growth. How can we work together to integrate these two energies to best move forward? What needs to happen?
In 2021, the energy of Saturn and what it's doing in the sign of Aquarius will be at odds with the energy of Uranus and what it's doing in the sign of Taurus. These two planets are not always at odds with each other, even though their energies are wildly different. In some parts of their longer 45 year cycle, they work harmoniously together when they are aligned differently. The whole time Saturn was in Capricorn this past few years, it was making a harmonious angle to Uranus in Taurus. But now we have a new kind of growth.
LET'S REVISIT THE EQUATION
Swap each planet for some key words and see how they could be at odds with each other in a square aspect. Try different combos. What are some possibilities you’ve come up with? Some of the keywords are literal things like earthquakes, bones, aircraft etc. so they may not flow as well with the more conceptual keywords and that’s okay – what’s important is allowing yourself to explore the process and the themes.
ADDING IN THE SIGNS FOR CONTEXT
This is the next layer. If the planets are the actors, the signs are their costumes and environments. Let's check out Saturn in it's home sign of Aquarius and Uranus in the Venus-ruled sign of Taurus.
PUTTING IT TOGETHER
Now that you've got Saturn in Aquarius and Uranus in Taurus, how might these two energies be at cross-purposes with each other in 2021? Allow yourself to marinate on the themes, and allow them to guide you. It's worth noting that not all qualities of any of these archetypes are "good" and not all are "bad". Both light and shadow aspects of these archetypes may be expressed at once, in various layers. As things begin to unfold, you'll probably recognize the themes either playing out in ways you anticipated, or in ways you hadn't thought of but that are right on point (super common - even astrologers don't see it all).
Here are my initial thoughts on this square, taken from my last article The Aquarian Shift & The Great Conjunction of Jupiter & Saturn:
In a nutshell, rebellion/revolution/awakening/futuristic energy is at odds with existing structures/authorities. It’s interesting because I’ve been seeing the left as being the revolutionaries (Uranus) challenging existing order and institutions (Saturn) to progress social justice, equality and human rights. But as we’re seeing an administration switch in the United States and a lot of upset Trump supporters, we may experience some of the revolution/rebellion energy (Uranus) as the right, and some of the existing institution and authority (Saturn) as the left. It may be a mixed bag with multiple layers of symbolism. As someone who is decidedly left, I don’t tend to think of the right as progressive and future-oriented, but there is definitely a push for freedom and along some lines a departure from the status quo - a different take on the same Uranian themes the left is about. I’m sure I’ll have further clarity on this myself as time goes on, but it will not be as simple as one party embodying Saturn and one party embodying Uranus.
Of course, all of this plays out well beyond the United States as well. Will existing authorities, institutions and structures continue to be challenged worldwide? Will new structures and organizations be built? This configuration suggests so. Uranus in Taurus also speaks to revolution within finance, the economy and agriculture, so it'll be interesting to see what happens there too. (It’s also worth noting that modern astrologers consider Uranus a co-ruler of the sign of Aquarius, so there’s another layer of Aquarian energy in the mix depending on your astrological practice.)
THERE ARE OTHER VARIABLES
FASTER-MOVING PLANETS: While we're looking at the biggest outer-planet configuration in 2021 (after the Great Conjunction of Jupiter and Saturn which is ongoing, but has already peaked), it's important to note that there are many other variables - the other, faster-moving planets! As they move through their orbits, they will interact with the Saturn-Uranus square as well but their effects will not be as deep or as long-lasting. This is why it's so great to follow reputable astrologers* who are writing horoscopes - because they will give you the zoom-in and play-by-play of any given day, week or month, and all of it is pretty useful.
YOUR NATAL CHART: The other variable in terms of how you'll experience these energies playing out in your personal life are the mathematical angles all of these planets in the sky now are making to your natal chart (where the planets were in the sky at the exact moment and location you were born). It can be helpful to get a reading from a trusted astrologer so you can understand where and when you're being watered, and where and when you're being pruned (I'd be honored to read for you and my booking page is here). I believe we can work with all the energy that's unfolding toward our highest wellness, and maybe the Universe won't have to bop us over the head quite so hard if we're consciously participating in our growth. Any good horoscope will also be able to give you some basic guidance on how these squares will play out in your own chart around the time they become exact. Just read for your rising sign as well as your sun sign (always do this when reading horoscopes anyway!).
It depends on who you ask. Many astrologers consider the planet that is further out to have more influence because it moves slower (think endurance and staying power) - in this case, Uranus. However, traditional astrologers may say the "overcoming" planet - the planet to the right in the configuration which is moving in counterclockwise motion - in this case, Saturn - has more strength. And we also have to consider planetary dignity (another measurement of strength). Saturn is dignified and strong in its home sign of Aquarius. Uranus is considered to be in a position of weakness or exile in the sign of Taurus by modern astrologers. Astrologers who use traditional rulership (myself) work with Uranus outside of this traditional planetary rulership scheme, but anyone can see the nature of Uranus is quite opposite to the nature of the sign of Taurus. So, who wins? I don't know :) I tend to see squares as a sanding down of the rough edges of both sides. But there will be change and checks on all sides, regardless of whether one side comes out on top.
WHAT ELSE IS POSSIBLE?
As we move forward into 2021, let's invoke the highest divine order of Love for us all Now, Now, Now ✨ Out across every timeline to meet us and keep us wherever we go ✨ I also invite you to ask yourself these two powerful questions put forth recently by two amazing friends in our community, @seven_seers & @crystalsofaltamira:
- What else is possible? (@crystalsofaltamira)
- What is my contribution? (@seven_seers)
Biggest Love to You & Yours. Be well and cloaked in Grace, Magick & Possibility Now, Now, Now & Always ✨
Love & Brightest Blessings,
*Recommended Monthly Horoscope Sources:
@theastrologypodcast (excellent monthly deep-dives, just not by sign)
@thestrology (excellent Astro resource in general, but no monthly horoscopes)