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The Three Major Life Transits: Part 3, Chiron Return

(This is the third installment of a three-part series)

The Saturn Return of our late twenties/early thirties is a time of "getting serious." We settle down. Some of us buy houses or start families or step into our careers. Typically, these are all externally-focused, conventional goals. Saturn helps us connect to the structure and form of our life path. The Uranus Opposition of our early forties says, screw all that noise. We've spent so long worried about what others think and our external, socially-acceptable goals - now, it's time to embrace authenticity, unique expression, and freedom. Uranus helps us to shake up convention and embrace the electric nature of our inner life force. And then, in our early fifties, we have the third and final "major" life transit: Chiron Return. It is after the midlife crisis, often chaotic energy of the Uranus Opposition, but it has a similar goal: to help us fully step into who we are meant to be - flaws and all.

What is the significance of Chiron in the natal chart? Chiron, of course, is not a planet at all, but an asteroid. It was discovered by astronomers in 1977, and it was found to be orbiting the Sun between the planets Saturn and Uranus. Renowned author and astrologer Barbara Hand Clow calls Chiron the "Rainbow Bridge" because it acts as a way to finally balance the two distinct energies of Saturn and Uranus. T


The name Chiron comes from Greek mythology. Chiron was a centaur who, unlike his brethren, was kind, intelligent, and noble. He trained some of the greatest heroes of Greek myth (think of the centaur in the Disney movie Hercules), but he was accidentally wounded by a poisoned arrow. He would have suffered forever, cursed by his immortality, but he decided to renounce his status as a god and instead gifted his immortality to Prometheus. (Source: Encyclopedia Britannica)


This myth helps us to understand the function of Chiron in the natal chart. It is often referred to as the "Wounded Healer" because it shows where our deepest wound lies. But it also shows us where we can most effectively heal others. Look up Chiron in your natal chart and complete this sentence: “I am meant to confront my wound in _______ and I can have a massive impact if I help others do the same.” Chiron in Aries/1st: matters of fighting for what I believe in Chiron in Taurus/2nd: matters of money and self-care Chiron in Gemini/3rd: matters of communication and observation Chiron in Cancer/4th: matters of family and caretaking Chiron in Leo/5th: matters of creative self-expression Chiron in Virgo/6th: matters of daily routine and health Chiron in Libra/7th: matters of relationships and collaboration Chiron in Scorpio/8th: matters of hidden motives and psychology Chiron in Sagittarius/9th: matters of higher learning and adventure Chiron in Capricorn/10th: matters of career and reputation Chiron in Aquarius/11th: matters of the collective well-being Chiron in Pisces/12th: matters of spirituality and unconditional love

What is the significance of the Chiron Return? As Chiron moves through the zodiac, it transits through all twelve signs and houses over the course of approximately 51 years. When it "returns" to where it was at birth, we have our Chiron Return. It is a time of true spiritual awakening. As Barbara Hand Clow puts it in her book, Astrology and the Rising of the Kundalini, “Chiron is the bridge between the personal and transpersonal, between the known physical world and the world of images that emerges from archetypes. Chiron Return at age 50 sparks the spiritual transmutation of self that completes all the transformation work of midlife crisis." Of course, this is no small feat. Many of us choose the path of the physical senses and external validation, regardless of our Uranus Opposition or Chiron Return. Clow goes on to write, "Death is the gateway into the spirit world whether one knows it or not, and Chiron Return is meant to be a time when greater knowledge about the spirit realm is attained while we are still in our bodies." By confronting, acknowledging, and accepting the very things that created our deepest wounds, we are then able to transmute that energy into an appreciation for the spiritual realm. This transmutation is essential if we want to enter the latter half of our life in alignment with our higher selves.

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