Saturn Returns – Stages of Life

Recently I gave a talk to the student body of NW Academy, a special Portland high-school for the arts. The title of my talk was “Do What You Love and the Freedom Will Follow.” In it I mapped human life into three stages, corresponding to the astrological phenomena known as “Saturn returns” (see wiki on this).

Saturn has an elliptical orbit that takes from 28-30 years, so a person’s first “Saturn Return” comes to roost just before age 30, the second one culminates about age 59, and the third one around age 88. As Wikipedia (currently) puts it “It is believed by astrologers that as Saturn returns to the degree it occupied at the time of birth … a person crosses over a major threshold and into the next stage of life.” I discuss these ‘Saturn cycle stages’ in my speech, starting with the first one (the one most relevant to students).

Stage 1 — the first 29 years of life — is your primary “learning phase” — when you learn who you are, what you are good at, what you like to do. How should you go about all this? By experimenting, by taking chances (while you are young and daring :-) … by trying things out!

It’s absurd, in my opinion, that we expect 18 or 19 year-olds to select and stick with “a major” or to focus on any kind of career at that age. Way premature! My general, if radical, advice to kids in their 20s is to NOT make major commitments — to career paths, organizations, or relationships (except under exceptional circumstances, of course). Plan on making the big commitments around age 30.

Instead, my advice to those in the student stage of life to take all different kinds of classes, read a lot of books, trek the world (there are low-budget ways to do this, or to work one’s way around) and, in general, job-hop to see what different types of work you might like. If you don’t try lots of different things, how are you going to discover parts of yourself that you couldn’t know before, possibly parts that your parents don’t approve of? The 20s are a time to individuate, not conform!

Next blog: Stage 2, your second Saturn cycle — time to do what you have discovered you love — and to do it with gusto!

One thought on “Saturn Returns – Stages of Life

  1. OK, Sir Paul. I just found you today via a synchronous string of events and read your blog about our 1st Saturn Return. Very nice. Very nice. Good advice.

    I am an early bloomer in the midst of my 2nd Saturn Return (almost 57 yrs old), fairly new to the depths of astrology yet reverently ‘know’ it is in my cells and eager to manifest and synchronize.

    Do you have an intuition yet of when your blog will be on-line for us 2nd Saturn Returners to read and enjoy?

    Hasn’t it been an incredible summer 2010?

    Thank you for reading this. I ever look forward to learning more.

    Happy Friday the 13th, the luckiest day of the month!

    A mutual Tarot devotee and lover of all things synchronous,


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