One of the biggest astrological influences of 2023 is Saturn’s ingress into Pisces. This is arguably the most important shift in the astrology of 2023 – and it’s one that I’m really looking forward to.
Saturn moves into Pisces on March 7, 2023 and will remain there for over two years. This is a major tone shift from the previous five years and should give the world some breathing room from the heavy, oppressive Saturnian influence that has been in place since Saturn ingressed Capricorn at the very end of 2017.
We have had over five years of Saturn in his own sign: Capricorn, then Aquarius. Saturn represents restrictions, limitations, blockages, death, illness, oppression. Having him in his own sign means he’s fully capable of being his best self – which means he can easily bring us all of the things he represents: restrictions, limitations, blockage, death, illness, oppression. Sound familiar?
Think back to what the world felt like in 2016 and 2017. It was quite different, wasn’t it? Because we get such a long period of Saturn in his own sign, by the end of it, it’s easy to think that the world has always been this dark and depressing. That’s not the case, though you can be forgiven for feeling like this bleak heaviness will never end.
Upon entering Pisces, Saturn loses much of his power to do Saturn things, and that’s a good thing for the world in general. Sure, there will still be restrictions and limitations of various kinds, but Saturn’s ability to render them total – like, say, a global restriction on travel and widespread draconian lockdowns – evaporates. If and when The Powers That Be do try to bring back restrictions, they won’t have the staying power that they did over the last few years.
Saturn moving into Pisces also breaks the Saturn-square-Uranus dynamic that we’ve had for the last two years, which was the constant push-pull of enforcing rules and then breaking free from those rules. Uranus will still be in Taurus, disrupting all the fixed and stable things that Taurus represents (food, money, material goods, labour) but there will be fewer complications with Saturn not being squared off with it.
This could mean more outbreaks of civil unrest and maybe even outright rebellions and coups. Uranus in Taurus is now free to go around disrupting everything as he pleases, and Saturn isn’t there to keep him in check anymore. There is freedom on offer, but also chaos. We do need order, even when it’s not much fun, so this will be a time of people pushing back and testing the rules, and seeing which rules have shifted – or dissolved.
Pisces is a feminine mutable water sign, the wateriest of all the water signs. Its feminine polarity makes it receptive and passive while its mutable nature gives flexibility and adaptiveness, but also a sense of indecisiveness and an overly accommodating nature. Water signs always emphasize the emotions and are sensitive, reflective and passive. Because of the similar traits between its polarity, mode and element, Pisces is the most emotional, flexible, passive and adaptable of the signs, with a tendency towards a lack of boundaries and internalization.
Saturn represents boundaries and structures of all kinds. Much of what Saturn is and does is opposite in nature from the sign of Pisces. Saturn is peregrine in Pisces, meaning he has no essential dignity or debility, save a bit of dignity by face in the first decan.
Saturn in Pisces is the hermit walking down the beach, retreating from the strong institutional structures of Capricorn and the rigid social rules of Aquarius. The tide begins to lap at his ankles. A yawning, labyrinthine staircase opens before him and he steps forward, spiralling forward and down into the deep.
Saturn can maintain some semblance of structure and order in the first 10 degrees of Pisces, but as he crosses into the second decan, the water is chest-deep. The walls of his labyrinth have dissolved. He moves deeper; the water closes over his head. Strange creatures and odd visions flick by as Saturn journeys ever further through Pisces: rainbow flashes of colour at the corner of his eyes.
All of his rules, boundaries, structures and order slip away, flesh and bone melting into the primordial waters. He has become one with the all. Waiting for him deep under the surface, at the very end of Pisces, still years away, is Neptune: formless, psychedelic, transcendent.
Saturn’s ingress into Pisces marks the start of an upcoming Saturn-Neptune conjunction that will not be exact until 2026, but will get very close a couple of times before that.
The two don’t form an exact conjunction until they both step into Aries in 2026, but we will start feeling an ever-growing Saturn-Neptune influence for a long time until then.
Some keywords for this conjunction include: imaginal (or imaginary) structures, spiritual boundaries, emotional boundaries, confusing rules, mind restrictions, intangible weightiness, bleak disillusionment, inspiration through discipline, psychedelic asceticism.
The world is going to feel increasingly destabilized and decentralized. It’s also going to feel very weird. There will be a continued fracturing of worldviews: groups of people will perceive the world in completely different, sometime diametrically opposed, ways. While the forces of globalization will continue to push for economic, financial, institutional and social hegemony, these pressures will cause greater numbers of people to splinter off and reject this homogenization.
Cults, gangs and other groups of disenfranchised people may rise, as people try to find a tangible and ordered place to fit in – whether or not this is healthy for them or not. The spiritual sickness of our society will be on full display, as people seek to fill the god-shaped hole within themselves and within the world.
The challenge for us is to embrace differences of opinion and worldview. Delight in those who think differently than you. We have a chance to come together in spite of – because of – our differences. Neptune offers and seeks collectivism, while Saturn offers a way of ordering and structuring Neptune’s collectivism, but the challenge for each individual will be to find their own place within these collective forces instead of being dissolved by them.