If you have studied astrology for a while or just read astrology blogs like mine you will have likely come across the concept of “Transits”.
But what are transits in Astrology?
Transits represent the actual, physical motion of the planets and the relationship between the actual current position of the planets and the location they were at your birth.
So ultimately the planets are always “transiting” as they are always moving.
So you might hear someone say “Mars is transiting Aries and my 8th House” or you might hear them say “Mars is in Transit with my natal Mercury”.
Ultimately what they are referring to is the way that the movement of the planets activates their natal astrology chart.
You might also hear someone say that “Mars is squaring their natal Jupiter” and what this means is that the exact placement of Mars currently is within a certain degree of difference to the natal placement of their Jupiter which creates a certain transit aspect in their chart.
For example, transiting Mars (Planet of action and bravery) might conjunct (be at the same sign and degree as) your midheaven or career zone and around this time out of nowhere you might experience an irresistible urge and drive to take action, go for a promotion or even quit your job.
This is the impact of transit Mars activating your natal midheaven.
How do I know what my transits are?
You can run a “natal and transit chart” which will show your natal planet positions and the current transit positions of the planets. From here you can visually see obvious transits such as conjunctions or oppositions.
In Astro.com go to your name in your account, select ‘Extended Chart Selection’ and from the drop-down select natal chart and transits.
You can also run the natal and transit chart for a specific date in the future to see what transits are happening at a point in time
You can also buy an ephemeris (or download one online) which lists the daily planetary movements and determine when planets will have a specific transit
e.g for a planetary return when will the planet’s position be the same as where it was at your birth.
For a detailed exploration of your current transits I recommend my Year Ahead Astrology reading.
Why should I care about transits?
Transits bring your chart alive in the here and now and allow you to look ahead into the coming days, weeks and year.
Some transits are quite rare, only occurring at specific times in your life and others come around more regularly.
And for the really slow moving planets we will never live to see certain transits.
For example, Neptune and Pluto take 165 years and 248 years respectively to move around our chart. So we will never see a Pluto Opposition as that wouldn’t occur until we were at least 124 years old!
How to work with different planet transits
The most significant transits for planning ahead are Uranus, Neptune and Pluto transits which can last months or even years.
Jupiter & Saturn transits can also be quite significant but as they only last for weeks at a time they are more useful for looking ahead to plan (or avoid) specific activities.
Venus, Mars and Mercury move quite quickly around our chart and only transit our natal planets for a matter of days so it is more effective to look at which houses they are currently transiting over rather than the aspects they are making to the natal chart unless you are looking for very specific timing of activity like an open cart.
You would however drive yourself crazy trying to track all of your Venus, Mars and Mercury transits each year!
Finally, the moon and sun move so quickly it is not particularly useful to consider transits involving the transiting moon or sun as they only last for hours or days however it is useful to consider each day, week, and month which part of our chart they are bringing energy to and I teach students how to do this in my program Your Soulful Year.
I personally will look each month at which part of my chart the sun is bringing energy and vitality too and also work with the part of my chart that each new and full moon activates.
Major transits are transits between the same natal and transiting planet which occur at specific times of our life and tend to create predictable conditions and responses.
An example is the Saturn return, where saturn returns to the position of your natal saturn (the place it was when you were born). This is also known as natal saturn conjunct transit saturn.
We also experience other major transits around our mid-life such as Natal Neptune square Transit Neptune (known as the mid-life crisis transit).
Each planet will have key major transits however, the number of them that we live to experience depends on how quickly or slowly the planet moves. For example Saturn will conjunct itself (return), sextile itself, square itself and oppose itself throughout our life and if we are lucky we will live to see three Saturn returns.
The below table lists the major planetary transits, how often this planet returns during an average lifespan and what age of our life this is likely to occur.
You can look up your age on the table below to get a sense of which transit you might be going through right now, however, it is important to note that many planet’s orbits are not elliptical, in that they don’t have even orbits and so the time it takes to experience a certain transit will vary based on when you were born.
|Transit||Number of Likely Returns||When the major transit occurs (approx)|
|Jupiter Return||7||11-12, 23-24, 35-35, 47-48, 59-60, 71-72, 83-84|
|Saturn Return||2-3||28-30, 58-60, 88-90|
|Lunar Node Return||4-5||18-19, 37-38, 55-56, 74, 92-93|
|Pluto square Pluto||<1||36-38|
|Neptune Square Neptune||0.5||41|
To find out which transits you are currently experiencing and what it means for you I recommend my Year Ahead Astrology reading.