Jupiter exactly opposed Saturn last night (May 22), but we’ve been feeling the influence all week, and it continues to reverberate. These slow-moving planets last opposed each other almost 20 years ago, in 1991. An opposition signifies maximum tension — in this case, between expansion, abundance, faith and vision (Jupiter), and material reality, the limits of space and time, responsibility and fear (Saturn).

JupiterIn traditional astrology, Jupiter is “the great benific,” the King of the Gods (Zeus to the Greeks), associated with luck, opportunities and good fortune. But the reality is that all planetary energies are just that — energy. There is no intrinsic “good” or “bad,” it’s all a matter of how consciously we use the energy.

Jupiter is now in Pisces the Fish, the sign of Spirit, the invisible and energetic realm, forces beyond logic or reason, the Mystery. Pisces rules the literal ocean as well as the ocean of consciousness — the dissolving of the sense of separate self into the feeling that “we are all one,” bliss and ecstasy, music, poetry, the imagination, vision and dreams.

Our go-go-go, bigger-faster-harder-stronger, hyper-rational culture has little room for Pisces — for being-ness, for feeling and tuning into the subtle aspects of life — in other words, for the feminine. Our culture is built on separation, the very antithesis of the Piscean feeling of universal oneness, compassion, and unconditional love.

Unconscious Pisces energy finds expression through addiction
, suffering, depression, escapism, victimization, illusion and deception. And now, through a deluge of oil that is quickly poisoning the ocean, and threatens to destroy the entire planet. Both oil and water come under the rulership of Pisces (see Chiron Enters Pisces).

SaturnJupiter is moving toward a conjunction with Uranus, also now in Pisces, amplifying Piscean energy to make the lessons of this sign really, really obvious. Saturn, traditionally the Lord of Karma, focuses energy and brings it into physical form, so we can no longer ignore or neglect the reality of the situation and have to take action. In this case, we’re reaping the consequences of our addiction to oil, and reaching the limit of an oil-based economy.

Ideally, awakening to the inherent violence and danger of an oil-based economy, we are inspired to make a collective turn toward living in harmony with the Earth, instead of drilling into her and sucking her blood.

How to begin? Saturn in Virgo says start where you are, start small, just start. Little things can make a big difference. Willow, of Willow’s Web Astrology, channeling Saturn in Virgo, advises:

“Cut away the noise and excess. Pare down to what is basic, simple, necessary, meaningful, real to you in your life. The more we sever ties to toxic structures and energy dynamics, the better we feel. Refuse to play the game. Reconnect with simple pleasures and the appreciation you have for what is real and good in your life. Guard that carefully.” (How Much Oil)

Our task is to take care of what’s right in front of us, to take responsibility for the health of our bodies, to tend to the Earth where we live, to manage (Saturn) our energy (Pisces) in a way that is beneficial to the whole. The integration of Saturn in Virgo with Jupiter in Pisces — the ultimate purpose of an opposition — means to live each moment of our lives with love and compassion, an attitude of blessing and gratitude, and with awareness of our inherent interconnectedness to All That Is.

Shadow Saturn in Virgo can look like perfectionism, postponing action until you’ve become an enlightened master and you know exactly how you’re going to get from A to B. Saturn in Virgo can also crystallize anxiety and worry — expanded by contact with Jupiter.

The antidote is simply to take action, to take the next logical step and trust that the step after that will become obvious. We perfect our skills through practice, through making mistakes. Maintaining a higher perspective and feeling connected with Source (Jupiter in Pisces) can provide the trust we need to take action.