Last December a study came out by NASA saying Saturn's rings will be gone in a few hundred million years. Ever since this monumental announcement my brain has been a bit boggled as I can't help but think about the archetypal implications of this discovery.
Just as consciousness evolves, our solar system evolves, our archetypes evolve. While we often think of Uranus or Pluto as forces of evolution, Saturn's evolution may be slower--a few hundred million years-- but no less important. Saturn represents the aspects of life that are stable and unchanging. The part of being human that craves security and support, the idea that such a recognizable feature, and 4.5 billion years old at that, would be disappearing seems unreal.
Maybe indicating old structures can fall away, it just takes time. Or reminding us that the protection or boundaries we set can be malleable and dissolve when it makes sense.
The rings are made mostly of dust, rock, gas, and ice. Apparently the ice falls onto the planet...around 4,000 pounds per second or an entire swimming pool in one hour. More below:
"It's a phenomenon astronomers have called 'ring rain.' Scientists have suspected this ring rain ever since the first photos from the Voyager probes in the 1980s hinted at the process. In recent years, the Cassini mission confirmed that ring rain was indeed real, and new observations from the Keck telescope in Hawaii are starting to tell us just how much rain there is."
Astrologically Saturn begins its retrograde this week while conjunct the same degree as the South Node...I find that rather auspicious. Perhaps indicating a time to revisit the past as a way of saying good bye to what no longer serves us. Though I'm still not sure I'm ready to bid adieu to those magnificent ring works of art!