Bear with this one, this is a LONG lesson...
4.) "Anything attached in a stressful aspect to the apex of the yod appears to comment on how the problem described by the yod came to be."
Please note: You will NOT find this written up by any professional astrologer. (At least, I haven't.) This is a personal observation of mine. And, some professional may show up here and debunk it. Although: After what I'm about to present, I dare 'em.
You need to look at the drawing again to see what I'm talking about. Attached to Saturn by red lines are the Sun (looks like a bull's eye), the Moon (obvious), Mars (the "male" symbol), and Mercury (looks like it has horns), all at a ninety degree angle from Saturn. This is known as a square, and squares are known to be stressful in astrology, hence the red lines. These are the planets we're talking about. Let's look at what they symbolize in my chart, and how they tell us the yod situation I have arose.
All professional astrologers tell you you have to read The Whole Chart. Which, in my case, is easy as every damn thing is connected to Saturn, usually by a stressful aspect. (Lucky me.) In the case of the yod, the squares attached to Saturn DO indeed comment on How This Problem Came To Be, as follows (information from Liz Greene’s excellent book, Saturn: A New Look at an Old Devil.):
I'm going to start with a few things The Great Liz has to say about Saturn. According to Liz Greene:
Saturn reflects struggling to build an ego and protect oneself.
--Indicates an area of the personality where the person remains infantile or childlike/ish because they didn’t get what they needed in childhood for that area to develop into mature adult understandings, attitudes, and behavior. It’s necessary for the person to grow up in these areas. (So, basically, as we’ll see, my entire personality is infantile and childish.)
--When studied in depth, Saturn offers a detailed picture of what you don’t want to see about yourself.
--Saturn is a measuring stick of the individual’s power of self-determination; it denotes that which can become a permanent part of your conscious self through self-motivated effort. You’re closed off from things you want or need in life until you get a specific task done. (Kind of sounds like why Saturn is the APEX of my yod, right??) You’re supposed to become a good parent to yourself first, then you can help other people. (Which sounds like the bottom of the yod. Right??) So, the stuff attached by square to the apex of the yod, Saturn, in my case describes how the problems came to be that are preventing me from achieving this thing, a writing career, that the bottom of my yod, Uranus, One, Virgo, and Nep, Three, Scorpio, both passionately want to do.
So, as I've shown, Saturn squares the Sun in my chart (my sense of who I am), the Moon (feelings, what I need to feel happy, the atmosphere of early home life and the relationship with the female parent, instinctive habit patterns), Mars (self-assertion and any aggressive impulses), and Mercury (knowledge and communication) … Gee, I guess I didn’t grow up at ALL. (Looking at Mom’s chart, she has Venus square Saturn, which is famous in astrology for indicating serious personality problems, and also Pluto Square Saturn; these two aspects describe a lot of BPD behavior, which I am convinced from years of reading and study that my mother has. So, yeah, there ARE a lot of aspects of my personality that need to grow up.)
The astrologer Alice Portman read my chart and told me this big yod with Saturn at the long end (I actually have three yods in my chart) creates a feeling of “What’s the use?” in my life.
And, boy, has it. Let’s take a look:
Saturn Square Sun: (P.S., Saturn always seems to tell you a lot about your parents.) “Sun-Saturn contacts seem to be the mark of the individual who has the opportunity to shape an integrated and finely edged tool out of his personality components and to put this tool to work as a servant of the perfected will.” (All this courtesy of Liz Greene’s famous Saturn book.) We figure out at a young age that we have to work for everything we value. We feel we have to guard ourselves against life. We never had the chance to be a child, so we “never learned that naïve trust in life’s bounty which permits relaxation of effort.” We’re either very successful or we’re failures. We’re either intensely ambitious or we have no ambitions because we’re afraid of the pain of not making them come true (as you’ll soon see, THIS WAS ME). We’re offered the opportunity to become masters of our fates. If we don’t take the opportunity, we become very sad people. Usually our fathers were not there for us in some important way (mine died when I was twelve, and was emotionally absent before that, trying to escape my BPD mother.) We have problems with initiative and creative endeavor and have to develop these all on our own because we didn’t have strong parents, especially dad, to encourage us.
If your Sun aspects Saturn in your birth chart, it denotes that you didn’t have much help in discovering your own identity. I can certainly say that that’s true of myself. I became what my family wanted me to be. I didn’t even know what would make me happy to be, and even now that I do know, I have an awfully hard time drawing it out of myself, and I believe that even if I finished a novel and offered it to the world, it’s highly unlikely it would be successful and I don’t want to be crushed by that (since I’ve already been crushed by so much else.) Incidentally, Davison also writes that Saturn Square Sun often denotes that a female will marry a much older husband, or one who becomes sick, needs caretaking, and predeceases her. Bingo on both counts!
Saturn square Moon: Denotes a person who wasn’t able to express themselves emotionally in childhood, who had to control their feelings all the time as a child, and whose mother was a disappointment or who let the child down in some way. No kidding; I really couldn’t express myself in childhood because my BPD mother needed validation and insisted I be just like her. I had to be her instead of me. Denotes a person who is brooding, lonely, aloof, and isolated. The person is lonely and needy because they never had an emotionally loving family, even though it looked like it from the outside. The child experienced a lot of harshness and duty and rules, and not a lot of warmth and love. The person has to become strong through isolation because they don’t have any happy memories from childhood and can’t depend on others to provide an emotional family nest they can bury themselves in and not grow (which is just what I do when I have supportive people; nest there and not work on what I want to do). A woman who has this often had a bad relationship with mom that made her feel rejected, isolated, and not good enough, and doesn’t want to express herself emotionally because of the fear of being rejected and humiliated.
Yeah. Sounds like me.
Saturn square Mercury: Denotes that the person often appears stupid out of fear and inhibition. Mercury represents the communication of the birth chart’s potential to the environment and the instrument of assimilating data from the environment. And Saturn is the planet of frustration, difficulty, and delay, so…! If you have a Mercury-Saturn aspect, you got cut off from data from your environment to help you shape your ideas and orientation, and you have to do it all on your own. Specifically, your parents treated you like you couldn’t think for yourself because you were a child, and stifled you if you had any thought or idea that conflicted with theirs. (Oh, BOY, was that ever my childhood!) With Sun square Mercury, you end up sure you’re stupid, and you work so slowly, because you’re so scared of making mistakes, that you really do look stupid. Then people make fun of you because you look stupid, and you feel and look yet more stupid.
This truly was the story of my entire working life, right up until my husband got really sick with brain cancer. Then people started respecting me because I was still functioning! And I realized I really did do some things right, and a certain workplace bully situation (which the next chart I will present did help me with) helped me realize I am competent and not stupid. But I’ve had that same problem trying to write an original novel, and stuck with fan fiction for decades because I couldn’t write anything original. I would try, and come up with nothing, for years and years and years. With Mercury-Saturn you are supposed to end up with freedom of thought, because you get cut off from the ideas of other people and have to develop your own. Often Mercury-Saturn people end up searching deep within themselves for their own truth.
Saturn square Mars: Denotes a person who feels frustrated, weak, and powerless, so tries to control other people, especially through emotional domination. (And I’ve been duly lectured about that by more experienced astrologers looking at the placement of Jupiter and Pluto in my chart. See where Pluto and Jupiter are.) Basically, the individual had overly controlling parents and possibly physically abusive parents. (Yep.) The person feels like their will is ineffectual because it’s been thwarted so often, and feels like they have no control over themselves or their life. Therefore, they pick out a weaker person, someone they can control, and use the person like tongs to interface with the world for them and provide what they think they can’t do for themselves.
A tragedy in the making that almost happened, as I will show with the next chart and the next yod.
So, to recap: I had an awful childhood with a lot of hazing at school, no dad, and a mentally ill mother. Therefore, I have no trust in life because things didn’t go well in childhood. Nobody encouraged who I was, so I’ve had a hard time finding that out, knowing who that is, and believing in myself; and I feel like life is too hard and I can never relax. I couldn’t be who I was in childhood and had a parent wanting me to parent her instead, and neither parent loved me for the person I am (which, really, is the same as not loving a child at all). So, I’m lonely, isolated, needy, and afraid of being rejected and humiliated. I’m think I’m stupid and don’t know anything, and I’m afraid of being laughed at and made fun of. And because of all that…I’m not going to stick my neck out in life. I’m afraid to risk, afraid to try, afraid of failure. I’ll feel humiliated if I fail, like I’m stupid and no good, and should be ashamed of myself for even thinking I could be as good as I want to be. I’m afraid of being all alone and not having enough money because I couldn’t achieve the success in the world that would bring enough money in. And I'm going to need money, especially if I'm all alone for the rest of my life, to pay student loan and hospital bills and adequately fund an old age. And all of this explains what the Saturn Drag is that’s keeping Uranus and Neptune, so happily shaking hands down there, from writing and promoting a novel that could have legs. So I’m going to…
(Saturn square Mars) latch on to someone else—the next chart in this series of proofs—who appears successful at all the things I’m not, and try to get him to take care of me. And he will, because he’s codependent, with HORRIBLE self-esteem, and believes the only value he has to anyone is if they need him, because he thinks he has nothing else to offer. And I’m going to browbeat him into whatever kind of life it is I think I want, which destroys the relationship.
And it almost happened. That will be shown in the relationship yod, coming later on.
4a.) When having trouble figuring out how a yod happened, take a look at Chiron. My Chiron isn't shown in that simplified drawing above, but it's in Aries, House 8.
Astrologer Aria Gmitter says about an 8th house Chiron: "Consider that the purpose of Aries is to identify with itself, it is 'I am,' and the ruling planet is Mars (ambition, drive and determination). Chiron is the wounded healer, so it's a wound that heals for the purpose of a lesson in growth. So, I think it's an attack early on in a person's life towards their identity and character. It can lead the individual to feel a loss of self identity. This can mean they don't have a voice because they don't know who they are. They may not be able to speak up for their injustices, or they could have been taught early on that they don't matter. There's a lack of place in the world. As the healer, I think that it's a powerful placement for an Aries because should the person master their wound, they will learn not to delegate their identity out to others. They will have found that they have participated in their own self sabotaging behaviors after leaving their family of origin and not severing ties so that they can discover themselves. It will also mean learning to be comfortable in their own skin with their imperfections, and going from a selfish view of the world to one that encompasses others, with boundaries.