Now, thirty years later, the maturation planet Saturn is once again transiting through Virgo. Saturn, the Lord of Karma is always felt deeply by the collective because it calls forth the actual physical manifestation of form, usually its astrological form. The principle influence of Saturn is the form and structure of time and space; therefore it rules all forms of physical manifestation. It shapes, crystallizes, defines, disciplines, and stabilizes. Saturn changed tides from Leo to Virgo in September of 2007. Saturn moved through the early degrees of Virgo in 2007, went into retrograde motion in early 2008, and is now halfway through its orbit of Virgo at mid-degrees. By December 31, 2008, Saturn will move into retrograde motion and move backwards to 11 degrees Virgo. Then on May 17th 2009 it will move forward again across the mid-degrees of Virgo and ride through to the late degrees of Virgo October 30, 2009. By function, Saturn narrows and focuses. It rules the spine, skin, teeth, bones, knees, and our center of gravity. It also rules our commitment to community, reputation, recognition, career, business, responsibility, debt, housing, foreclosures, profession, land, and buildings.
The 1960s brought us the conjunction of Uranus and Pluto which began the call to evolve and revolutionize socially, politically, and spiritually. Now, as Uranus and Pluto form into a 90 degree square aspect, they herald an era of extraordinary social, political, and global transformation once again. The conjunction is the starting point of a cycle. The square is the turning point. These squares challenge us now to manifest the visions that were seeded in the 60s, especially for those with mid-degree planets in the signs of Gemini, Virgo, Sagittarius and Pisces
Leo to Virgo
In 2007 we were still trying to acclimate to the practical living of Virgo after leaving the vibrant intuitive creativity of Saturn in Leo. It was a hard turn to take to leave Leo in all his creative limelight to the microscopic scrutiny of the Virgo Goddess, yet by succession, Virgo beckons us forward to bring our expansive hearts and self-focus into selfless service, accurately curbing our excesses and to devote our attention to the here and now. In light of all that has occurred in the financial market, we can see that Saturn is not fooling around, especially in Virgo (and either is Pluto in Capricorn). Virgo is precise, clear, and direct. Saturn in Virgo wants accountability and responsibility. If what was created in Leo cannot sustain functionality, then Virgo will cut it down to size, and boy is that happening now. The grandiosity of Leo (shadow of Leo) is being siphoned into the funnel of discernment. In its highest form, Leo is the expression of Divine Self-Love, radiating a childlike infusion of sunshine meant to ignite latent inner light in others. Leo is generous, fun-loving, and warm, yet when he acts from shadow, self-centeredness and egotism reign supreme, and too much Sun burns. Thus we have Virgo the virgin to refine our light and direct it. Virgo wants to perfect, craft, polish, and continually renew and develop towards self-improvement. She achieves this through noticing every nuance and every microscopic detail of her surroundings and her body. She is the Mrs. Spock of the zodiac, observing any blemish, any non-essential or unnecessary factor that may distract her from her goal, the art of sacred devotion and healing. Her critical nature serves as the refining element needed to discern deserves her sacred attention. Collectively and personally, it has not been an easy journey for the Virgo archetype up until now. Hidden in the shadow of patriarchal repression her characteristics become extremely self-critical, thus she seeks constant atonement for the unruly guilt complex she carries, believing she is lacking somehow. The Course in Miracles would say this is all of us who have not awakened to who we truly are—the light of God. In astrological language, this refers to Pisces, the polarity of Virgo. Virgo is a mutable sign (changeable); therefore she needs to be mindful, as she is easily swayed by outer influences and authorities, especially if she doesn’t know who she is. Unconsciously giving her power away, she may willingly sacrifice herself. She is a giver and wants to tend to the needs of others, living out her ancient path, therefore, she must be discerning about who and what she nurtures, or she will become devoted to an addiction or outside force (person, place or thing). Virgo is so precise, though, that she sees right through deceptive influences if she is taught to honor and listen to her perceptions and trust her gifts. She needs support and validation of her wisdom more than ever, especially since outer culture (excessive masculine) has dishonored her role for so long. If our wounds are not dealt with directly, we will perpetuate the illusion of separation from our Highest Self, our God source.
Traditionally, Virgo has been linked to the planet Mercury, which also rules the sign of Gemini. Gemini and Mercury represent the masculine and the ethers, yet Virgo is intrinsically feminine. And although she is mentally oriented like Gemini, she is so through her devotion and embodiment of the Sacred and Divine bodymind. Virgo the Virgin is said to be an earthen bound angel with wings.
In modern culture, the term “virgin” is misunderstood and portrays virginity as an untouched maiden, pure and chaste, appealing to a sexually dysfunctional culture cut off from the wild, embodied, and self-contained feminine. No wonder Virgo has been wound up so tight and placed within the realms of the mind—she has been stripped of her earthly essence. The Virgo archetype developed into a self-focused, self-anointing signature to survive the stifling effects of the rising patriarchal culture. Defining the essence of Virgo from her repressed history only continues to feed the dualistic shroud the feminine principle has been wearing for centuries, Madonna or whore.
Archetypically Virgo is related to Persephone, Demeter, the Virgin Mary, and Mary Magdalene. Astrologically she is related Ceres, Vesta and Chiron. In Demetra George’s book, Asteroid Goddesses she links Vesta to the signs of Virgo and Scorpio.
…The Elder Keeper of tradition preserving ancient ceremonies and rituals for the descent of magical energies into the world. When “denied her sexual devotion to others (Scorpio) she turns her energy inward (Virgo) to realize the divine union within herself.
In pre-Hellenic cultures the Great Mother Goddess was revered and the true meaning of “virgin” stood for unmarried women who devoted themselves to the sacred hearth and fire of ancient feminine rites. These vestal virgins were women who embodied the mysteries of the Kundalini fire, bestowing their mysteries through sacred sexual acts of union as a means to embody and create divinity (divine birth, Jesus) and to spiritually awaken their consorts and communities.
George notes, during the rise of patriarchal culture in the Greek and Roman empires vestal virgins were enshrined and vowed to chastity as a means to dismiss matriarchal lines and Goddess worship. Any virgin who strayed from her duty received severe whippings and was sentenced to a slow agonizing death by subterranean crypt. From this perspective we can easily grasp and understand the ancient and sacred depth the Virgoan archetype carries. This archetype remembers the freedom pre-hellenic cultures bestowed upon them, and thanks to the movement of the Moon’s nodes through the Pisces/Virgo axis in 2006 and 2007, the sacred feminine was unveiled and awakened in the collective mind, unleashing Virgo the Magdalene from the underworld.
Virgo is such an interesting archetype. I am still working out which planetary ruler feels like the best fit; Vesta, Chiron, definitely not Mercury. And now (2008) as Saturn in Virgo moves through the collective it seems clear Chiron is Virgo’s primary ruler. Who could go so deep, who could bring up the ancient archives of our wounds, but Virgo, and who could bring us the salve for those wounds other than Chiron. I have always personally related to the myth of Persephone, probably because I have Venus conjunct Pluto in Virgo. Pluto allows me to go deep, deep to the ancient wounds of my soul. Virgo allows me to precisely pinpoint what needs healing, Uranus gives me the ability to change and transmute and Chiron in Pisces allows for the wounds to be dissolved into the balm of the universe.
Thus applying Vesta and Chiron as the primary ruler of Virgo brings the Mercury-laden sign into her rightful earth element. The myth of Persephone and Demeter perfectly aligns with the 60s Generation archetypal theme. Persephone’s abduction by Hades (Pluto), the God of the Underworld, led Demeter to starve herself (Virgo) and the land of all sustenance until her daughter’s return. The story of Persephone’s abduction into the Underworld and Demeter’s search for her best describes what most of us are feeling now. We are starving for the complete and total return of authentic nurturance, and for a conscious authentic relationship with our Mother—the Earth. When the Virgo archetype remains in constant guilt (shadow of Virgo) she is only lacking what the collective has not acknowledged in her and what she has not discerned within herself—her own sacredness and her sacred place on Earth. Because the feminine principle has been barren and misunderstood for so long, she is thirsty for sustenance, and only true sustenance will suffice us now. Virgo knows the difference. Remember, she is highly perceptive and acutely accurate. She will strip herself bare of the nurturance she so needs to stay hidden from the ruling patriarchy that has repressed her in the past, rather than outwardly risk captivity and death again.