Maritha Pottenger

With astrology, it is easy to get caught up in certain meanings, especially if we see repetitive sorts of patterns among our clients. Part of our challenge, as counseling astrologers, is to constantly be alert to alternatives and options. When we start to think that certain configurations always mean ONE thing, we are limiting our clients as well as ourselves.

Current patterns are an arena where it is easy to slip into “good/bad” astrology. It is true that certain combinations of planets (e.g., Saturn/Pluto) seem to be handled often in a negative fashion by clients. Yet we must keep the positive alternatives in sight—and help our clients to recognize them. If we offer only the “down” side of anything, what will inspire the individual to search for an “up” possibility?

The following list will take a look at current patterns (transits, progressions, directions, returns, etc.) involving the “heavy” outer planets. Each planet will be discussed first by itself, and then with the other nine. Each planet symbolizes both negative and positive potentials and some are listed (under + and -). These are BY NO MEANS the only possibilities—just some which I have come up with or seen. Challenging aspects (squares, oppositions, quincunxes and some conjunctions) indicate the person is more susceptible to the negative forms of expression. So, we need to identify some of the constructive possibilities and deliberately strengthen them. I encourage you to add to and expand this list with more client examples—especially of positive paths.

SATURN in general: plan; be practical; carry out NECESSARY responsibilities; limit UNNECESSARY duties; deal with structures; create tangible results; face authority/control/power issues; build a solid foundation; work on career.


- limited vitality, inhibited self-esteem, ruthless ambition

+ exciting achievements, practical leader, recognition for diligence

Structure recreation; plan for fame; deliberate ambition; respect authority (and gain respect from authorities); make manifest artistic/creative talents; put a love relationship in order; work hard for ego gratification.


- harsh parenting, overprotective, emotionally limiting, anxious, melancholic

+ warm and practical, compassionate and capable, balanced family/career

Family business; work out of the home and with the public; build tree houses, play pens, etc.; record genealogy; family duties; look after Mom; put home in order; examine your emotional needs; balance dominance and dependency.


- communication blocks, fear, tedious work, harsh or depressive statements

+ organized thinking, practical mind, concentration, business skills

Organize files; systematize phone calls; control gossip; clarify thinking; make lists; write about something you take seriously; do research.


- financial belt-tightening, limited love, focus on performance and over-criticism in relationships

+ dependable affection, solid assets, professional artist, mature pleasures

Build possessions; create a budget; work on relationships; secure affections; financial planning; save money; sculpture; enjoy achievement; solidify resources; commit to love (to a serious relationship); enjoy authority; diet or discipline other appetites.


- conflicts with authority; self-criticism and self-doubt; inhibition; frustration

+ energetic accomplishments; practical assertions; good endurance

Carpentry; body building; work on personal tasks; take on REASONABLE responsibilities; improve personal appearance; start own business.


- pessimism/optimism at odds, disillusionment, never good enough, gullibility and need for reason

+ dreams brought into tangible form, practical idealism,

principled achiever

Teach; consolidate gains; clarify beliefs; ground principles; take steps toward goals; plan long trip or new class/degree; work with confidence.


- conventional/unconventional at odds, authority conflicts, sudden limits, work/social life friction, traditional security/change and risk issues

+ best of old and new, calm, cool, collected, scientifically minded

Channel creativity; fulfill NECESSARY obligations but structure some free time; scientific hobbies; build new structures; change old structures; attain more independence in your work; teach/take charge of a group; solidify relationships.


- phobic, insecure, sacrificial, lack of faith, gullible

+ achieving visionary, sensible mystic, realistic dreamer, professional artist or healer

Structured focus on art (through classes, projects, etc.); involvement with organized religion; a spiritual/meditation diary; applied mystical principles; volunteer services; work in an institution.


- relentless, cruel, forceful, dominating, addiction issues, fear due to projection of power into others, obsessive

+ enduring, organized, thorough, powerful, systematic

Eliminate obstacles, ORGANIZE (closets, storage areas, files, correspondence etc.); do your taxes, do research, get rid of unnecessary duties/obligations; take power in your profession; apply discipline to self-mastery issues (diet, stop smoking, etc.).

URANUS in general: experiment, explore, try new approaches, take reasonable risks, deal with friends/groups; open up options/choices; express your individuality/uniqueness, maintain independence, keep a sense of freedom.


- erratic, excitement addict, blows hot/cold in relationships, foolhardy

+ creative, original, unique, progressive, loves with an open hand

Group leader; network in fan clubs; promote technology; public recognition for astrology; play with gadgets; speculate on the future; be childlike; express your individuality; experiment; love in new ways; adopt creative hobby.


- Unpredictable domestic life, erratic nurturing, moody friends, emotional upsets

+ friendly nurturing, attachment and independence, supportive friends

Experiment with food; modernize the home; female astrologers; progressive women; make friends with Mom; independent emotions; change domestic arrangements; nurture/be nurtured by friends; develop intuition; foster openness.


- weird thinking, strange communications, eccentric relatives, twitchy environment

+ genius, unique perspective, modern communications, new connections

Jot down ideas; tape record sudden insights; write with your other hand; walk around without glasses; communicate with friends; network; invent things; explore your environment (take new routes to work); question, question, question.


- sudden short-lived love, erratic affections, unpredictable finances, rash pleasures

+ love of freedom/love with freedom, varied finances, avant-garde art

Experiment with art/new aesthetic projects; go to parties; meet new people; do new things in an established relationship; experiment with sensual pleasures; seek a new income source; appreciate friends; associate with unusual people.


- runaway, accident, turbulent changes, sudden violence, rash acts

+ creative, pioneering, extremely independent, mechanical skills, courage

Keep options open; have varied tasks; alternate physical and mental focus or jobs; take assertiveness training; get your horoscope interpreted; change your appearance; try a new sport; be direct; deal with anger in friendships.


- tactlessness, stubborn independence, foolhardy, blunt, overly intellectual

+ seeks knowledge, breaks new ground, explorer, truth-seeker

Take new classes; teach people; do a lecture tour; travel with a group; explore different belief systems; learn about other cultures; examine expectations for friends; keep your options open; laugh.


- instability, weird emotional states, erratic faith, illusory progress

+ inspirational, interest in large-scale issues, philanthropic/humanitarian ideas

Explore new artistic arenas; try on mysticism or other spiritual techniques; free yourself from victimizations; experiment with faith; work for the highest potential with friends and groups; beautify technology.


- crises, torn between security and risk or between independence and dependence, ambivalent about intimacy

+ reformer/transformer, unusual forms of sharing, sudden insights

Experiment sexually; consider other approaches to finances/possessions; free yourself from manipulations/would be controllers; listen for psychic flashes; eliminate outmoded/unhealthy friendships/groups.

NEPTUNE in general: get involved with art, music, poetry, fantasy, imagination in any form without ignoring practical issues; help deserving people but not to the point of martyrdom; heal; work with visualization, dreams, affirmations; meditate; do magic shows; enjoy nature, especially water; tune into your Higher Self; pray; watch/make movies.


- low energy, lack of or excessive self-esteem, unclear ego needs, damage to reputation

+ artistically creative, spiritual courage, charismatic, enthusiastic

Dance, create art; teach; promote/persuade; advertise or do P.R.; create romantic interludes with a lover; take up a water sport; become a leader in mystical, healing or helping activities; watch/make movies; learn a magic art.


- disappointments, anxieties, over-sensitivity, gullibility, lack of clarity about feelings

+ empathy, compassion, caring, protective, introspective

Develop deep, abiding faith; feed intuitive side; channel; meditate; use empathy; cook beautiful meals; beautify home; visualize the best for Mom; nurture/heal; learn from dreams; tune into Higher Self; release emotions through fantasy, movies, books, etc.; inspire women; make home a sanctuary.


- confused thinking, deceptive communications, evasive, thoughts war with feelings

+ blend conscious/unconscious and rational/intuitive mental ability, beautiful language, spiritual thought

Poetry; imaginative writing (e.g. fantasy); music; song writing; hula dancing; decorate one’s nails, eyes, etc.; read the I Ching; visualization exercises; movies; affirmations; discuss spirituality; interpret dreams; study religion.


- disappointments in love, unclear or unrealistic images of affection, excessive renunciation

+ beauty, profound/inspirational love, romantic, devoted, good taste

Any kind of artistic/aesthetic activities; create romantic interludes with a partner; beautify possessions; share inspiration with loved ones; enjoy helping/healing people; contribute to charity; made money through artistic, assisting, or inspirational activities, indulge the appetites moderately.


- low energy, lack of or excessive assertion, aspirations without action, drugs or other forms of escapism

+ inspired action, spiritually energetic, stimulated by art/beauty

Grace in action (dancing, skating, skiing, diving, gymnastics, etc.); beautify yourself; fight for a worthy cause; discover or create your own religion; active philanthropy; confront expectations/anger; act on intuition.


- false hopes, unwise speculation, con artistry, always looking for the easy way, lack of faith, unclear or unrealistic goals

+ faith/hope in the future, high (but not impossible) ideals, visualizes the best, inspirational

Get involved in religious or spiritual activities; make priorities (establish a value hierarchy); examine who/what you trust and when/where it might be too much or too little; tune into your Higher Self; take an art tour.


- unconscious complexes, unrealistic images of intimacy, looking for ultimate fulfillment in force or possessions or pleasures

+ psychic insights, inspirational intimacy, spiritual resources, relationships with shared faith

Dissolve resentments; transform negatives into positives; eliminate excessive fantasies; examine expectations about intimacy; strengthen intuitive capacities; develop enduring faith; empower your spiritual side; inspire mates.

PLUTO in general: eliminate what is outmoded/unhealthy; empower what is lacking in strength; transform negatives into positives; face hidden depths (of self and others); deal with intimacy (sex/money) issues; build stamina; transform, move toward self-knowledge/self-mastery.


- over-ambition, dominating loved ones or being dominated, ruthless leader, arrogant, willful

+ powerful, enduring, intense love bond, emotionally creative

Eliminate outmoded ambitions; transmute arrogance into genuine self-esteem; strengthen self-confidence; gain recognition for tenacity; engage in competitive sports or business; take a leadership role; express healthy sexuality and strong love.


- manipulation, emotional blackmail, smothering, repressed emotions

+ rich emotional life, committed mate, protective partnership, deep feelings

Go into therapy; do past life regression; explore dreams and unconscious symbolism; nurture with strength; eliminate inappropriate dependencies; empower family(ies); transmute negative emotions; renovate your home.


- manipulative language, propaganda, misusing secrets, sexualized thinking

+ organized thinking, uncovering hidden knowledge, communicating desires

Do research; organize your files/closets/paperwork; do accounting; study occult or other hidden areas; do detective work; talk about sex; communicate with a mate; use forceful language where it will be effective; apply focus/concentration; eliminate outmoded routines, paperwork, ideas; analyze language patterns.


- power struggles in love life, torn between appetite indulgence/control

+ balanced in giving, receiving and sharing sensuality/money/sexuality

Enjoy material/sensual/sexual pleasures without excesses or over-control; give, receive and share equally with a mate; balance power in relationships; enjoy intense emotional experiences; handle finances constructively; keep to a healthy diet; be moved by art; enjoy massage, tactile pleasures, intense love.


- brutality, violence, misuse/abuse of force, running from intimacy

+ concentrated energy, enduring achievement, sexual desire that permits mutual satisfaction

Exciting sex; massage; acupressure, chiropractic or other physical manipulations for healing; eliminate or express in constructive ways anger/resentments or other intense emotions; engage in competitive business or sports; fight for something you believe in; take political action; build physical stamina; be clear about sensual/financial desires; analyze yourself.


- fanatic goals, exploitation, emotional excesses, overly idealistic intimacy

+ wealth through/with others, best/brightest in intimacy, wise mate

Influence through a positive example; seek self-mastery; study subjects deeply and thoroughly; notice and encourage the best in your mate; have lots of exciting sex with your mate; analyze your beliefs; eliminate outmoded assumptions; seek what is most deeply fulfilling; build an enduring sense of faith.

Readers can experiment with their own ideas relating the “big four” asteroids and Chiron to the outer planets. Send your suggestions to The Mutable Dilemma and we will be happy to include some of them in a future issue.

Copyright © 1990 Los Angeles Community Church of Religious Science, Inc.

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