April 17-September 6: Mercury Retrograde Ends & Another Begins: Welcome Saturn.

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*Whether astrology is science or magic, we’re open to most things, if they may be of benefit. ~ Ed.

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Many of us have made a mental note that April 15th is the day that life starts to get back to “normal”—due to Mercury finally coming out of its retrograde period.

However, we may have not realised that Saturn is sneaking up and turning retrograde just a few days later!

On April 17th, Saturn, one of the most feared and dreaded cosmic influences, turns retrograde and churns up everything in its path—and it stays in this position until September 6th 2018.

The biggest difference between Mercury and Saturn retrogrades is that Mercury seems to be non-stop, throwing one thing after another in our direction, leaving us in a confused, bewildered state. In contrast, Saturn offers clarity and wisdom as it occurs over a longer period, bringing any chaos and drama that Mercury dragged in to a stop.

This gives us the opportunity to dive deep and soul search so we can process exactly what has been happening in our lives and most importantly, why.

A retrograde turns our energy inward and intensifies it, which is why many of us withdraw and become more introspective and introverted when planets like Saturn appear in backward motion. Although retrogrades may seem chaotic, they are blessings in disguise: they shift our focus so we become consciously aware of anything that’s not aligned in our lives, our unhealed wounds, and unresolved emotions that are desperately trying to gain our attention.

When we turn the spotlight inward, we are able to see with clarity where we’ve been going wrong, where we’ve been failing or succeeding, where we are currently at, and where we are heading, and ultimately, it helps us take accountability for our personal journey so we avoid repeating the same lessons and mistakes.

The ringed planet Saturn is Capricorn’s ruler and has been moving through the goat constellation since December 19th, 2017.

It will remain in that sign until late 2020; however, it is only now going retrograde, meaning it appears to spin backward, which simultaneously flips our lives into reverse.

Whenever a planet is in a sign that it rules, the characteristics of that zodiac sign are magnified and strengthened.

Saturn is the furthest planet from Earth that is still visible to the eye, and as it is at the edge of what we can see in our solar system, it also brings into play boundaries, limits, and our ability to see only what’s in front of us.

This means that the retrograde is going to challenge us and throw us out of sync—we’ll be pushed to look beyond the visible and take notice of what we have previously turned a blind eye to, or not believed in, simply because we haven’t chosen to “see.” This could mean that people we’re in relationships with are unmasked, and veils come tumbling down as we begin to see things for what they actually are rather than what we wanted them to be.

This is where our intuition is called upon—we are reaching a stage in our lives where we know there is more behind every interaction and situation we find ourselves in, but we haven’t had the faith to trust ourselves. Instead, we only trust what we see at face value, leading us to be lied to, manipulated, controlled, and deceived.

During this retrograde, we may also notice that we’ve placed invisible boundaries or walls around ourselves in an attempt to fit into tiny, cramped boxes that other people, or society, created for us, particularly concerning our romantic relationships. Instead of listening to other people’s definitions of who we are and what our relationships should look like, we will throw off the shackles and determine for ourselves our skills, talents, and capabilities, thus recognising that we are divine beings with limitless possibilities.

Saturn orbits the sun so slowly that it shows us patience, control, tolerance, persistence, surrender, and composure, and how commitment and perseverance can pay off.

However, when this planet is in retrograde, each of these qualities will be tested so that our intentions and motivations are questioned—all for a good cause. This means we might find ourselves impatient and desperate to control other people and our surroundings, and we may end up losing all control, have meltdowns and tantrums, and want to quit and throw away everything—including relationships, friendships, and careers.

Again, this is just a shake-up that allows us to clearly see who and what matters to us. What it highlights for us can help determine whether we’re placing our energy in the right areas and if all our loyalty, dedication, and faithfulness are truly worth it.

Saturn retrograde is likely to have stages that feel unrelenting and destabilising, as it is all about learning from past mistakes, so it asks us to revisit them. We can only move forward when we understand why we put ourselves in certain situations or become emotionally involved with people who we weren’t meant to be with long-term.

This can be quite painful to go through.

But, it is a much needed phase of our lives, a necessary healing process that allows us to cleanse and let go—and one to take slowly, to not rush through so we can avoid making the mistake of returning to whatever (or whoever) has caused us harm.

While Saturn is known as the planet of karma and discipline, this is not considered a negative trait, as all cosmic placings happen in order that we achieve a greater understanding of ourselves and the world around us, and to serve our highest good.

Karma, in my belief, is self-gifting or self-punishment.

We can own it and work to clear it, or deny it and keep attracting whatever we are sending out. Do we choose instant inner peace or eternal emptiness and misery?

For example, if we feel terribly guilty for saying something out of turn to someone, our vibrational energy will be lowered and we will then attract a similar low-vibrational person or event, which confirms exactly how guilty or apologetic we feel about it. Rather than perceiving this as a negative, we can see it as an opportunity to resolve the karma by placing positive where negative once was, and even better, resolving the original misunderstanding or conflict.

When we feel genuinely sorry for our actions and make amends for our behaviour, the low vibration dissipates and is transmuted to a positive, forgiving, compassionate high vibration that goes on to attract an abundance of similar loving and accepting high-frequency vibrations.

Whenever we try to deny our role in something that has gone wrong, or if we attempt to blame someone else for our situation, it lingers inside us and causes irritable, painful, and uncomfortable sensations. These sensations then play out in our daily lives by showing us similar situations until we are forced to do something about them. If we try to deny the energy we have sent out, we will then repress the associated energy.

Karma is intrinsically linked to consciousness, so if we are absolutely aware of the energy we send out, we will also be aware of the cause and effect of it too, and be in a position to redeem ourselves when we go off course by accepting our role and making the alterations necessary to reroute. This means that not only are we authentic through rectifying any difficulties we have caused, either to ourselves or others, but we can also learn from them so we don’t keep behaving in ways that create the same errors and disruption time and again.

While it isn’t always easy to own our negative behaviour, if we don’t, we might self-punish by attracting negative karma, and we may feel miserable, unhealthy, and even lonely—as we either isolate ourselves through guilt, or others keep their distance.

During Saturn retrograde, karmic attraction is heightened, meaning that whatever we have been putting out there is going to be returned in magnitude. However, we can ease this by choosing to be authentic and willing to resolve issues as they arise, or better still, before they are issues at all.

For any good that we’ve been doing, this is going to be come back to us as well—so even if we think our hard work and sincerity has gone unnoticed, we will start to reap the benefits and rewards from whatever we’ve been sowing.

Overall, Saturn retrograde shows us how to look closer at everything we have experienced, and it urges us to do so without hurrying the process.

It helps us to understand that when we have gone through traumatic and painful periods in our lives, it is vital to show compassion to ourselves, which means moving slowly and with immense care so that our emotions, thoughts, and feelings are validated and heard.

It also teaches us how essential it is to be responsible for our personal exchanges, and to remain aware and accountable for the energy that we bring into every interaction, as energy lingers and will return to us—keeping us aware of the ripple effect of our words and actions. In doing so, we become more compassionate, kinder, thoughtful, and empathetic humans—the best and greatest versions of ourselves possible.

If we aren’t willing to attune to cosmic energy and pay attention to what this retrograde offers, it is likely we will remain stuck in old ways, repeating similar mistakes, attracting challenging circumstances and relationships of all kinds, and wondering why life feels like groundhog day.

It is our choice: we can awaken our consciousness, blossom, grow, and move our lives forward, or we can remain asleep, hiding away in the soil, feeling triggered, acting from our subconscious, and refusing to see the light.

Whatever we choose, know that for every energetic action there is a reaction. We can make it positive or negative simply by remembering that whatever we give out to the universe will be returned.

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Relephant:

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Author: Alex Myles
Image: Tanja Heffner/Unsplash 
Editor: Catherine Monkman
Copy & Social Editor: Lieselle Davidson

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Alex Myles

Alex Myles is a qualified yoga and Tibetan meditation teacher, Reiki Master, spiritual coach and also the author of An Empath, a newly published book that explains various aspects of existing as a highly sensitive person. The book focuses on managing emotions, energy and relationships, particularly the toxic ones that many empaths are drawn into. Her greatest loves are books, poetry, writing and philosophy. She is a curious, inquisitive, deep thinking, intensely feeling, otherworldly intuitive being who lives for signs, synchronicities and serendipities. Inspired and influenced by Carl Jung, Nikola Tesla, Anaïs Nin and Paulo Coelho, she has a deep yearning to discover many of the answers that seem to have been hidden or forgotten in today’s world. Alex's bestselling book, An Empath, is on sale now for only $1.99! Connect with her on Facebook and join Alex’s Facebook group for empaths and highly sensitive people.

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