Hard Faith in Times of Hard Truth: A Saturn/Chiron Face-Off.
“Faith itself sometimes needs to be stripped of its social and historical encrustations and returned to its first, churchless incarnation in the human heart.” ~ Christian Wiman
As we navigate difficult times on Mother Earth, how does one return faith to its first, churchless incarnation in the human heart? The answer is being revealed to us in the form of a challenge — a challenge to remain steadfast at the center of all that is bleak.
Author, educator, and activist, Parker Palmer, might refer to this challenge as the tragic gap — a phrase he coined that speaks of the space between what is possible, and what is. This passage by Jalaluddin Rumi could be another interpretation: “Out beyond ideas of wrongdoing and right doing, there is a field. I will meet you there.”
Tarot decks use the image of the Hanged Man to interpret the challenge of being stuck in suspension. For me, as a professional astrologer, it is the present-day configuration between the planet Saturn and an asteroid named Chiron that brings this message home.
Saturn, in astrology, describes where we experience our toughest obstacles in life, and thus, where we are forced to overcome. Currently transiting the truth-seeking sign of Sagittarius, we are facing many inconvenient truths, which have been sobering to say the least. Meanwhile, Chiron, in astrology, tells us where we hurt.
The asteroid’s name has its origins in classical mythology — a centaur known as the Wounded Healer, revered for his ability to restore faith to those in need, though unable to mend his own wounds. Chiron transiting the sign of Pisces sees us developing a greater capacity for pain, matched with a greater capacity for compassion. This is our cross to bear.
Saturn and Chiron are now at odds in the sky, forming a tense 90-degree right angle that requires the leveraging of limitation in our lives, with the sadness it brings. We, dear humans, are at the apex of this angle; real world manifestations take on many forms.
In the United States, for example, people are coping with the harsh reality of a Trump administration and what the election revealed about the state of America; and yet, we must wade through the anxiety we feel, nonetheless, if we hope to repair all that is wrong in society.
In our own personal lives, this might show up as restrictions that threaten our connection to one another, doused with an enduring commitment to the boundless energy of a love that prevails.
Saturn in Sagittarius points to the dilemma of our circumstance, and the agitation triggered by Chiron in Pisces seems unending. But this is where we transcend.
Remember the apex? That is the space between what is possible, and what is; that is the field where we will meet; that is suspension itself.
For Virgo and Virgo Rising, it is detaching from hurtful feelings and emotions that need to be nursed, brought on by those you love the most. For Leo and Leo Rising, it is expressing your truth through love and art, even if it leaves you vulnerable to rejection. For Gemini and Gemini Rising, it is maintaining your commitments to significant others, while the demands of your career bring stress to your relationships. For Scorpio and Scorpio Rising, it means recognizing your inherent value and worth, even when you doubt what makes you special in the first place.
The apex is us — we are where the tension resides — and it is here that faith can return to its first, churchless incarnation in our human hearts. It is faith in humanity. It is faith in the highest truth. It is faith in the highest version of ourselves.
Saturn and Chiron will remain at a 90-degree angle in the sky, +/- a 5-degree orb, for the remainder of 2017.