When natal Saturn is in Leo, the fiery Summer sign becomes a generally awkward surrounding for the ringed planet to function and prosper. Leo is all about action and self-confidence, fun and attention, while Saturn is that planet of seriousness and organization. Thus, we have two different (and even opposite) powers that are trying to find some way to blend with each other. Saturn is officially considered to be peregrine in Leo, but has some characteristics of detriment too. Saturn has been the old ruler of Aquarius, until the planet Uranus was discovered and became the sign’s ruling planet. Aquarius is the sign opposite of Leo, which in turn makes the sign of Leo a celestial territory that appears to be a handicap for the ringed planet. Saturn in Leo can develop difficulties in life areas concerning self-expression and self-confidence and everything else that Leo and the Sun are responsible for as archetypes. On the other hand, this natal combination grants the necessary patience to work hard and sacrifice parts of the individual’s ego, for the opportunity of being able to experience long-lasting prosperity after reaching the targets and goals set from the beginning.
Additional information about Saturn’s potency in each sign can be read in the article Saturn’s Essential Dignities.
Saturn is considered to be a social planet, along with Jupiter – its archetypal opposite force. While the personal planets (Sun, Moon, Mercury, Venus and Mars) directly affect the characters of each individual, social planets are giving trends that encircle the whole society. The reason is simple; the personal planets are performing a rather quick passage through the signs, which usually lasts a couple of months maximum. Yet, the social planets will need a year or more to pass through a sign; this way they grant similar characteristics to all the people being born during that period. More particularly, Saturn needs around two and a half years to travel through a sign of the zodiac, while its counterpart Jupiter needs a little more than a year. This blend defines a yearly generation; which is rather visible during the first years of a native’s life. During the childhood years, the placement of Saturn determines discipline delivered to the native, while also how it is perceived. As Saturn makes a full turn around the zodiac in approximately 29 years, it needs 14 years to make an opposition to its natal placement. This is roughly when the teen years strike, bringing the first responsibilities and the need to abolish naivety, slowly entering the world of the grown-ups. The joy of childhood is evaporating, father time is bringing the first signs of wisdom and not just knowledge, yet also the first adult problems, pressure and turbulence. The adolescent native is now feeling demands from the world around him, which is naturally not the most desired thing for a youngster. Of course all these steps are a natural process of evolution, preparing the native for his long path through life.
The placement of Saturn in the signs is important, yet a lot less than his placement in the houses and his aspects to other planets (especially personal ones). Each sign will give him some special flavor, a background on which he will operate and support the native’s life. Of course, he will indeed give some special characteristics connected to the sign he is placed in, and some extra boost to activities and archetypes that the sign represents. Yet, it is wrong to perceive any such placement as of high importance for the native’s individual traits; you should regard it mostly as a social phenomenon that develops certain social trends. Do not forget that generations of 2,5 years difference may have Saturn in the same sign, so even in synastries between charts the Saturn of two individuals of the same generation can easily conjunct (tightly or loosely) one each other.
Roughly, some of the periods when Saturn was transiting Leo are the following:
- August 1946 – September 1948
- September 1975 – November 1977
- July 2005 – September 2007
- The next passage through Leo will be from August 2034 to July 2037
Saturn is generally governing constriction, stability and seriousness – both on a physical and a spiritual level. He is responsible for long-term plans, while also obstacles that may appear on our way until reaching our goals. We tend to call him the grand malefic of the celestial dome, yet the planet itself does not have such a purpose. Indeed, he can bring delays, difficulties and even disappointments; on the other hand all these can be essential steps for reaching wisdom, experience and preparation for further steps on our path that might be more important. On the other hand, any success that we may receive with Saturn’s help, tends to be long-lasting; a stable platform on which we can build even more. It is not a surprise that on a physical level, Saturn is mostly connected with the human bones and teeth – the thickest and toughest parts of our body. Saturn is the natural ruler of the 10th house and Capricorn, which makes him strongly connected with terms such as career, public image, leadership, steady growth inside social pyramids, reign. Saturn as a planet enjoys organization and planning-ahead, keeping up with deadlines, serious approaches and even voluntary sacrifice of small daily things in front of the long-term goals. In case that those prerequisites are delivered, he helps with a good harvest of results. What Saturn does not like is childish and naive behavior, rushed actions, chaotic patterns and laziness. A real tactician, Saturn will always help those who think before acting, and who try to figure out the optimal decisions. He is logic, he is patience, he is clear mind, he is control. In many occasions, Saturnian interventions can be perceived by the individual as “necessary evil”, as his slap might hurt but in the same time prevent us from the real evil which would come in case we would not be shaken up.
Since the ancient times, the second bigger planet of our solar system took the name of the Cronus, the legendary Titan-God who was father to 6 other Gods of the Greek Pantheon (Zeus, Poseidon, Hades, Hera, Demeter and Hestia). According to the Greek Mythology, he is afraid of his children becoming stronger than him and overthrowing him, the same way he did to his own father, Uranus. Thus, he decided to devour them – yet his wife Rhea hid the last child (Zeus/Jupiter) in a cave and gave him a rock to devour instead. Zeus managed to overthrow him when he became an adult, releasing his five siblings from Cronus’ stomach too. Eventually, Cronus and the rest of the Titans were defeated in a legendary battle, called Titanomachia, and the young gods became the rulers of the Greek Pantheon. The Latin equivalent of Cronus was Saturn, and it prevailed as the name of the ringed planet both in astronomy and astrology. Saturn’s opposite counterpart in astrology is naturally Jupiter, and they form the Jupiter/Saturn axis as another archetypal Yin/Yang. The one expands, the other constricts – and the balance between those opposite forces is giving a healthy stability.
Natal Saturn in Leo usually complicates the balance between immediate ego needs and structuring long term plans. The individual faces the challenge to choose between these two frequently, which makes him feel a lot of pressure. He must either choose to feed his ego through various types of hedonism, or put that aside and organize his time (what he finds rather boring) in order to build his future. Many times, such sacrifices are being made for exactly the things he sacrifices: hedonism and fulfilment of ego. Yet, the native strategically chooses to create a target of gifting himself for a prolonged period of prosperity in the future, which will grant him a lot more joy, fun and absence of responsibilities.
One of the positive traits that this placement grants, is the overall “brightening” of the gloomy and otherwise phlegmatic nature of Saturn. Placed in the sign where the Sun has its reign, Saturn loses a big part of his darkness – even though he does not enjoy such types of transformation. Especially if the planet has good aspects from other planets, we could even say that the natural grand malefic is disarmed. The life of the native can be easily perceived as a happy one, as the planet mostly responsible for all types of melancholy, depression and pressure is functioning in a sunny way. In addition, the “Saturn return” periods, when an individual gets older and passes from one generational category to another, are experienced with a lot less turbulence and can even be pleasant experiences.
Saturn does not like being the center of attention, yet Leo is exactly all about that. The planet will be acting defensively towards any possible attempts of being brought into the spotlight. The only period when the individual will feel safe to draw a lot of attention on himself, is the elder years. Somehow, in the latter years of his life, these two opposite tendencies will find a way to function without creating upheaval. The native with such a placement usually manages to keep alive the child in himself, while on the other hand his Saturn finally understands that not everything should be taken seriously, and it is allowed to even make mistakes concerning one’s public image. Thus, again we could state that this placement is one that can complicate the native’s early years, but can enlighten their reality when getting old.
Leo Saturn people should be careful to not underestimate their powers, or elsehow undermine their ego. This is a tendency that they are inclined to develop in various times of their life, especially when some slow moving planet (especially Saturn itself) is creating a rough aspect to natal Saturn.
Generalizing is the only way that we can describe a natal placement of slow-moving planet, and it gets even more difficult as we move further from the Sun towards the outer planets. Pluto, for example, can even define a whole generation of 25 years, so it would be even absurd to try to fit one third of the world’s population into some stereotype. At the same time, as Leo is the natural ruler of the 5th house in Astrology, Saturn in Leo could for many individuals give similar characteristics as would give Saturn in the 5th house. Still, it is mostly the flavor of this aspect that would have similarities, and not events or predispositions themselves.
Some general traits which Saturn in Leo gives to a generation, are: restrictions concerning having fun and self-expression, giving birth to children later than the average person, difficulties concerning luck and speculation through investments, seriousness concerning public image, great abilities in politics and other careers that need leadership. In addition, such people perceive sexual relations with other people as an area of seriousness, which might complicate flirting and those first steps of enthusiasm and freedom that usually help in the expansion of a relation towards the status of relationship.
Leo as a sign is ruling our heart and chest, so any possible difficult aspects to Saturn could have heart problems as a direct effect. The cold nature of Saturn will frequently bring chronic disorders, which can escalate during the gloomy months of the year. If you have this placement, watch out for recurring troubles that might appear in that body area, as Saturn tends to give reappearing issues of a certain type.
When a Leo Saturn is well aspected in a natal chart, the native will be in the long-term successful in the life area that the sign of Leo rules, and any possible obstacles will just empower his march to his goal. On the contrary, bad aspects to Saturn can bring complications, and may be even connected to karmic debts that the native has to pay, as Saturn is considered a planet who connects cosmic energies from the past and the future, and even from previous and future lifetimes. In any case, Saturnian difficulties should be perceived as lessons, and the more open someone is to understand those lessons, the less they might hurt.
Each planets have a different effect on you, depending on which house and sign they reside in. In order to find out where they are located in your natal chart, you can use our free birth chart generator.
Also, examine the aspects that they form with other planets in your chart. You will understand a lot more about the detailed role that they have in your horoscope.
Xaos is the author of all astrological articles available on The Astro Codex.