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Saturn in Libra : an agricultural perspective

By Carole Lalonde

Saturn transiting Libra is commonly associated on the mundane level with justice, alliances, equity and /  or false jurisdictions as well as aborted trials, according to the aspects made by Saturn. But I would like to bring to your attention the not so familiar relation between Saturn exalted in Libra and agriculture. Let us go back to mythology and remember Saturn castrating his father Ouranos with a sickle. This sickle is a vestige of Saturn as god of agriculture. His reign was characterised by peace and productivity; it was named the Golden Age. We also know that Saturn rules over an earth sign, Capricorn.

As to Libra, it receives Saturn’s exaltation at 21 degrees. According to modern authors, exaltation may be considered as stronger than the throne. In an agricultural perspective, how may we explain Saturn’s role in Libra? Libra follows Virgo, another earth sign symbolising the gathering of the crop at the end of summer. Virgo is furthermore represented by a young girl holding a wheat sheaf. As for Libra, its well-known glyph is that of scales. The Egyptians saw in the scales an esoteric symbol, that of the weighing of the deceased person’s heart, corresponding to the Last Judgment. The heart had to be lighter than a feather!

But also, a more down-to-earth interpretation of the sign for the Egyptians was that of the crops weighing and tax collecting during the Full Moon of Libra. W.E. Peuckert[2], in a study on the origin of signs, suggests that the sign Libra, because it is not related to an animal but to an object representing commerce and urban life, indicates a cultural transition between agrarian and commercial interests. Thence the exaltation of Saturn in Libra; ideally, the produce must be weighed with precision to ensure that each party receives its fair due.

The Pluto / Saturn square

From an agricultural viewpoint, how about the cardinal square between Pluto and Saturn?  Pluto finds itself on Saturn’s domain, in a square aspect. As where Saturn represents agriculture, Pluto represents the underground. Also, a more modern interpretation gives Pluto rulership over genetics. Agriculture combined to genetics make for GMO (genetically modified organisms).

A recent personal research on the matter, pertaining to a lecture on the parallel between Frankenstein and Prometheus, based on Mary Shelley’s original novel, has sensitized me to GMO’s and its astrological symbolism. It is difficult to do research on the subject, because, as in the nature of Pluto, alot of information remains underground.

However, if we consider the highlights of this spring, when the square was active, (it is active until September 2010 if we agree on an orb of 2 degrees),  we will remember the massive protest arising from the Haïtian people menaced by famine after the earthquake and who were offered OGM cultures by multinationals like Monsanto. In the actual context of the Pluto Saturn square, this public occurrence could be just the tip of the iceberg.

Saturn in Libra

In the same context, let us further examine the transit of Saturn in Libra. Saturn entered Libra from October 30 2009 up until April 7 2010. The planet then went back into the sign in direct motion on July 21 2010 and will remain in Libra until October 5 2012. As this article is written (August 5 2010), Saturn faces a cardinal T-square with Pluto and with Uranus and Jupiter.

In a mundane perspective, the presence of Jupiter and Uranus at the beginning of Aries, opposite Saturn and square Pluto show us that commerce and industry are at a stand-still; equally, in Russia, fires have been burning up crops. There is even danger of radioactive pollution as Tchernobyl as well as other nuclear reactors are located near these fires. The explosiveness of Jupiter and Uranus in Aries square Pluto well reflect these issues.

If we go back to the image of the Egyptians weighing wheat on the scales during the Libra full moon , it shows us the wisdom of ancient astrology as Russia, on the beginning of August, has announced an embargo on its wheat exports. (Later on, in September, Europe got reports that this shortage had been grossly overdone to induce speculation on wheat prices). But here again, Pluto square Saturn may well be indicative of speculation. And whatever the reason may be, Pluto in Capricorn, agriculture’s sign, could well point to barrenness and famine in the coming months and years, in the more sensitive parts of the globe.

When interpreting charts in astrology, it is sound advice to confirm an event by more than one astrological factor.Here, the asteroid Ceres, goddess of agriculture and cereals in the more ancient matrilinear civilization, lends a hand in predicting food rationing and shortages, particularly in October 2010; Ceres will conjunct Pluto in the agricultural sign Capricorn in early October, soon after squaring Saturn. One will remember Ceres’ mourning over her daughter Kore, abducted by Hades, which mourning brought Ceres to stop the earth from producing cereals.

In the same vein, it will be interesting to observe the mutual reception between Saturn and Pluto, when Saturn in Scorpio will be sextile to Pluto in Capricorn. According to ancient texts, the people represented by the planets which are in mutual reception tend to know each other. The mutual reception aspect between the two planets will occur from the end of November 2012 till mid-april 2013, then from September to October 2013. The political deciders could then walk hand in hand with GMO producers. Jupiter entering Taurus from June 4 2011 to June 11 2012 becoming part of a massive  production plan; Jupiter will trine Pluto in Capricorn for a short time.

It is obvious that the oncoming world context, with its inundations, desertification, earthquakes and the like, opens the door to GMO’s. The world’s agricultural genetics are thus in danger of being modified substantially in the next years, through a political logic of productivity and profit.


The transit of Saturn in Libra will certainly prove interesting at all levels of manifestation, for us astrologers. The links I have made between Saturn in Libra and agriculture are intended to highlight the long and difficult passage of Pluto through Capricorn and the unfortunate hardships and shortages which will mark it. Also, my aim was to help create an awareness of the occult phenomenon of GMO’s which the alert astrologer may follow through his own occult language, that of astrology.

Carole Lalonde

[1] Horicks, Michaud, Traité Pratique d’Astrologie Mondiale, Cédra-Astralis 1990, p.11

[2] Peuckert, W.E., L’astrologie, Petite Bibliothèque Payot, paris, 1980, p. 28

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