America's Seventh Saturn in Libra

Saturn in Libra has historical significance—and often dire consequences—for the United States, as this noted astrologer explains.

| November/December 1981

072 saturn in libra - us chart 1776, large version

A larger version of the chart.


On October 22, 1981—in the midst of a massive solar system alignment which is currently happening in the ancient zodiacal symbol of Libra—the United States experienced its seventh return to Saturn in Libra. (Saturn in Libra occurs only once in approximately 29 years, and its strong influences can be noted for as much as a year's time on both sides of such dates.)

Astrologically speaking, whatever was born on earth from 1775 through 1777—including nations such as ours—has Saturn "exalted" in the sign of Libra; the Libra symbol represents the "Balance Beam of the Law", which justifies the "defense of liberty" on one hand, and the "infringement of liberty" on the other. Indeed, according to its national astrological chart, the United States can represent both the positive and negative extremes of law and order. In the Declaration of Independence, for example, the country took on the responsibility of constructing a new order of freedom. Yet more than once, in defense of our own liberties, we've considered it just to deny those of others.

Furthermore, on July 4, 1776 the hot summertime sun was moving into a "square"—or 90° aspect—with ponderous, restrictive Saturn. In proper astrological terminology, then, in the birth chart of the U.S., Saturn would be considered "afflicted" by the sun.

Now many people will doubt the significance of such occurrences, but the fact is that every Saturn return for the United States has been marked by at least one direct and harsh confrontation with other countries over what is fair internationally, and—on those occasions—every President involved has made mistakes, the most prevalent being to employ "protective" measures and take an isolationist stance.

The First Saturn Return

The first Saturn return that the United States endured took place during the autumn of 1805. At that time President Thomas Jefferson—in order to protect and defend the American economy from European manipulation after the War of Independence—decided to block trade to and from Europe as part of a policy known as "peaceable coercion." His notorious embargoes and tariff programs were based on the belief that we had to defend our liberty, even if it meant snubbing other nations ... most of which were merely trying to collect debts and reestablish a balance of trade.

As it turned out, "peaceable coercion" was an absolute disaster. American workers went on strike, many of the new states were threatening secession, and inflation skyrocketed as the government paid off panicky merchants with freshly printed money. The young and tender country nearly fell apart at the joints, and only the War of 1812 rallied the people and put an end to the mismanagement that took place during the nation's initial Saturn return.

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