Saturn in Twelfth House

Bringing Order to the Boundless

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Saturn the planet of structure finds itself in a curious state, in the Twelfth House of boundlessness.

So what are the teachings, when Saturn is in the Twelfth House – the sphere of the boundless and dissolving traits and accoutrements “of this world”?

The Twelfth House theme of sacrifice can loom large. There can be ordeals that stir up a lot of anxiety about possible loss. It might be the threatened loss of what’s been worked for, and that’s a huge part of the sense of self.

The fearful side of Saturn goes into fight mode to resist this stripping down.

And that’s when there can be self-destructive behaviors that lead to illness or trouble with the law. The Twelfth is traditionally the house of hospitals, prisons and rehab.

But a path to the other side, is to experience a lightening of the load. To follow the Sufi wisdom, “To die many times, before you die.” It’s a tough placement (but aren’t they all) because Saturn seeks stability, and the Twelfth House or Pisces is about the ultimate change – the release of everything back to the great sea.

Hopefully Devoted

Some with Saturn here answer this call, by being very disciplined with their spiritual lives. A Saturn in the Twelfth native might find an anchor in a meditation practice or being a faithful yogi. In its extreme, though, this too can be a defense. You might become the spiritual overachiever that gets antsy if you can’t sit on your pillow one day.

Or you grow authoritative in your ideas about what devotion requires of yourself and others.

This is also the House of dreams and the imagination, so Saturn could find form via the arts. A serious artist could apply Saturn’s persistence, to put music to feelings, or paint a fantastical world. It means developing fully the faculties of the right brain, as a complement to other intelligences.

If this is your Saturn, consider keeping a dream journal – religiously. You can then begin to concretely see the “other worlds” you inhabit, and to draw guidance from them. For the artist or dreamer who invests in the imagination, it becomes real.

Giving Up or Surrendering

A big theme here is taking responsibility (Saturn) for your own spiritual direction. And in the Twelfth House, the lessons are about the art of surrender.

In her book, Intuitive Astrology, Elizabeth Rose Campbell writes, “One of the biggest challenges of the twelfth house, ruled by Pisces and the planet Neptune, is understanding the difference between giving up and surrendering. Giving up is an abandonment of one’s center and capacity to respond. With that abandonment comes a loss of instinct. To surrender to a circumstance, even a difficult one, is a different dance entirely. You must retain self love and self respect through the surrender.”

A defense with Saturn here could be being subsumed in that “something larger” – and taking on the role of a drowning, lost soul. Campbell writes, “Giving up responsibility for the spirit can take many forms other than alcohol or drug addiction, including that of the escape artist who uses the power of the imagination to create a smoke screen behind which he or she disappears.”

Feeling Nature

A path to confidence for this Saturn is to inhabit these worlds of feeling and the imagination. It means developing the courage to know the self deeply, and explore its secret corners. And it’s wise to set in a stabilizing force, by consistently using – and refining -- the spiritual compass.

Once the resistance to surrender is overcome, the great teacher here can lead to great wisdom. And with Saturn, there’s a sense of contributing to the whole – the structures of society.

The Twelfth House is associated with dreamy Pisces, the last sign of the Zodiac.  So also check out Saturn in Pisces.

Overcoming Confusion and fear of being nothing or nobody; the lure of escaping through drugs, alcohol or a life of fantasy; sense of spiritual isolation; resistance to letting go of trappings of identity.

Encouragement Releasing the temporal for the eternal; a spiritual practice; strong sense of deep service; direct engagement with spirit.