The 2020 Great Conjunction: Jupiter Conjunct Saturn in Aquarius
Known as “the great conjunction,” the cyclical conjunction between Jupiter and Saturn that occurs every twenty years has been the preeminent method of demarcating historical eras in traditional astrology. When Jupiter and Saturn come together there is both the intensity of old forms dying as well as the fertility of new growth beginning to take shape. In the past century, their cycle has aligned with the transition in between decades, with the conjunctions and oppositions between Jupiter and Saturn marking the start of each decade. For example, there was a Jupiter and Saturn conjunction in 1980, an opposition in 1990, a conjunction in 2000, and an opposition in 2010. Jupiter and Saturn form their next conjunction on December 21 of 2020 in the first degree of Aquarius, and so most of 2020 took place during the end of their cycle. There has been an atmosphere of anticipation building during the year of being on the precipice of a new era, while simultaneously old issues have resurfaced in need of resolution.
Together Jupiter and Saturn combine expansive and imaginative vision with the structure and discipline needed to both manifest results as well as strip away the inessential. While Jupiter signifies generosity and fortunate opportunities, it can also lead to egoic greed and delusions of grandeur that requires the contemplative focus of Saturn to trim the excess and strengthen what is ready to ripen. At the same time, we need the inspirational revitalization of Jupiter to mediate the negative side of Saturn that can bring fear over limitations and obstacles and lead to depressive stagnation. During 2020, we have been dancing in a constant balancing act of tempering between Jupiter and Saturn, with a need to shift in between the synthesizing growth of Jupiter and the methodical reordering of Saturn.
Though the conjunction of Jupiter and Saturn every twenty years is always important, their union in 2020 has special and extraordinary significance. Jupiter and Saturn have a pattern of forming their conjunctions in the same element of astrology for approximately two hundred years, such as occurring in water signs from the beginning of the fifteenth century until the beginning of the seventeenth century and in fire signs from the beginning of the seventeenth century until the beginning of the nineteenth century. Since 1802 the Saturn and Jupiter conjunctions have been occurring in earth signs, with the final one occurring on May 28 of 2000 in Taurus. After the conjunction of Jupiter and Saturn in Aquarius in 2020, there will continue to only be conjunctions between Jupiter and Saturn in tropical air signs until 2159.
Thus, 2020 is the end of a two-hundred-year era of Jupiter and Saturn uniting in earth signs. While the earth element signifies focus on material security and consolidation of resources that is resistant to change, the era of air will bring disruption to established orders and dramatic changes in collective ideas and the way we communicate.
Vitally, not only will Jupiter and Saturn be uniting in Aquarius, they will also be forming a catalytic square aspect with Uranus in Taurus. At this pivotal moment in our journey, the lightning bolts of Jupiter and Uranus will not only bring down old societal structures but will also impel us to release old personal dreams and drama we have been attached to. There will be new challenges and unknown potential arising as we begin a new era of Jupiter and Saturn that we will need to make space for in our lives. During 2020 ask yourself what you need to leave behind and what you truly desire to carry forward.
Art by @collagesoul