Saturn Retrograde in Pisces


For the next four and a half months, Saturn, the planet of karmic lessons, turns on his heel and makes his way backward through 19 – 12 degrees of Pisces.

Having arrived in this very last of the zodiac signs in March of 2023, the challenges exposed by Saturn’s foray here have been nothing short of transformative. Endings abound. Boundaries have been created - possibly for the first time ever. We’ve become familiar with the twin qualities of escapism and dissociation. We’ve come face to face with our addictions, swimming down all the way to rock bottom. Here’s where we’ve discovered the immense treasure that has lain in wait for us - once we were willing to make the plunge. Here, we’ve come face to face with our feelings and all the ways in which we’ve tried to avoid them. And here, we’ve found the courage to take ownership and not wallow in the disempowering roles of Victim or Enabler.

It's still a work in progress. Saturn gives us three years in which to grapple with the hurdles of the sign he visits. The first year of his transit in any new sign is often the hardest, wherein we feel lost at sea, unfamiliar with the territory and out of touch with our inner GPS. In the second, we go headfirst into the nitty-gritty and make the needed changes. In the third and final year, we feel confident, having accustomed ourselves to this new reality.

With this in mind, it’s a crucial moment to take note of how far we’ve come. Where on this journey through the sign of the cosmic fishes, the sign of spirituality, of music, of art, of boundaries and vulnerability and feelings, have we found ourselves? Saturn retrograde is a heavenly invitation to reassess. To absorb what we’ve been through. To assimilate the teachings of this ever-wise planet, who always has our best interests at heart, even if we don’t know it at the time. Like the stern Father that Saturn archetypically represents, the discipline he offers is seldom gentle. Nevertheless, it molds us into responsible and mature adults.

Those with planets in the mutable signs - Pisces, Virgo, Sagittarius, and Gemini—between 19 – 12 degrees will feel Saturn’s retrograde the most. These signs are tasked to face reality and to take with them only that which they are prepared to commit to in the years to come. All else must dissolve and fall away in the misty depths of oceanic Pisces. Saturn cleans up the mess that Neptune has left behind, leaving clarity and the ability to face reality as it is. What a relief. Jupiter meets Saturn in a square on August 19, revealing a moment where expansion and discipline need to be integrated in whichever area of life reveals itself.

This retrograde has come exactly when we needed it the most. Taking a moment to review our structures to integrate will support us in the final leg of Saturn’s cosmic dance.