Universal Becomes Personal: Outer Planet Combinations in Your Natal Chart

Outer planets represent universal themes and transformative energies that are bigger than you. When two or more outer planets aspect each other, the result packs a wallop. But when they aspect each other in your natal chart, their energy is not always felt directly. These aspects are present for a large group of people and can (in some cases) last a few years, because the planets move slowly. However, when combined outer planets aspect a personal planet, their larger-than-life impact becomes intimate. The effect can be akin to using a nuclear generator to power a flashlight. The surge of energy through your love life can feel overwhelming.

Uranus, Neptune and Pluto are the outer planets. Some people include Jupiter and Saturn as inner planets, but I don’t consider their energies to be personal. The rest are personal planets, and will more likely affect your relationships if Venus or Mars are involved, or if the personal planet rules your 7th House, or is located in your 5th, 7th or 8th Houses. Hard aspects (conjunction, square, opposition) between the outer planets and a personal planet are more likely to trigger extreme situations than the easy aspects.

A Conduit for Collective Energy

There are many examples of outer planet pairs, or even three planets, aspecting each other. Each combines themes for the collective. Your personal planet as a conduit between universal and personal can trigger relationship events that seem to be out of your control: all or nothing situations; desert-like stretches of celibacy; attractions that are traumatic in their intensity; lovers who decimate, elevate or transform you.

For example, an aspect between Jupiter (expansion) and Uranus (liberation) is about hope for the future, as well as the freedom to explore on your own terms. Jupiter wants more, Uranus wants it now, and it must be different from anything that has come before. But if the aspect is a tense square, it creates the sense that something is not quite right. There is an explosive push to move forward. Impulsive confidence driven by the fear of stagnation might describe this combination. Now, let’s add Venus in a conjunction to Uranus. This can create an intolerance for conventional relationship rules. You’re the romantic explorer, with detached (Uranus) ideals (Jupiter) about how relationships “should” be. Attractions can occur suddenly, and act as catalysts. If you’re not fully conscious of this energy, it can manifest as an attraction to partners who are distant (emotionally or literally). Or, you may attract partners who blow you away with their electric magnetism, and then vanish.

Saturn (limits and reality) aspecting Neptune (dreams and transcendence) combines structure and release. Neptune’s higher purpose seeks manifestation in the real world, while Saturn’s authority seeks meaning beyond the mundane. If these planets are in opposition, Saturn’s ability to manifest is compromised by Neptune’s escapism. Reality is dissolved, while belief is crushed under the weight of pessimism. Let’s say your Moon forms a T-Square to this opposition (it squares Saturn and Neptune). Your security needs are trapped between Neptune’s belief and Saturn’s reality. The dominating influence will depend on whether Saturn or Neptune is emphasized in your chart. But often, the result can be emotional sacrifice and feelings of depression. An emotional connection with partners may be blocked (by yourself, or those you’re drawn to) if you repeat the patterns of disappointment from childhood. Your Moon is associated with the primary nurturing you received. You may also find yourself settling for less when it comes to relationships, because that feeling of resignation is familiar. What you truly need in a partnership, described by the house and sign of your Moon, is always denied or just out of reach.

Owning the Big Energy

The first step with any difficult natal aspect is to own it. This may seem next to impossible, especially when you’re dealing with energy that represents collective themes. But it’s your chart. If you’re not fully conscious of your behavior, it will be reflected back at you. If you have a powerhouse combination involving two or more outer planets and a personal planet, know that this will be the dominant theme in your love life.

In the case of Jupiter/Uranus and Venus, you can focus on your partnership ideals (freedom, exploration, the right to individuality) and see how they have influenced your relationships. Consider if any of the instability you’ve experience is driven by a fear of being trapped. Also, do you walk the talk when it comes to your enlightened ideals? The upside of this combination is you have a sense of optimism that never dies. You can be the driving force in your partnerships — the cutting-edge instigator who keeps things fresh and alive.

Saturn/Neptune and the Moon will require a hard look at what was missing in your childhood. Somewhere along the line, your needs were repressed. If this pattern continues, consider if you’ve tried to step outside your habitual behavior. It can be tremendously difficult to look up when the chains of resignation are weighing you down, but it’s worth noting if you indulge in escapist behavior when the going gets rough. Or, if you allow fears to snuff out the potential for an emotional connection. The possibilities of this combination include the ability to achieve true empathy, and to heal yourself (and your partner) while still maintaining appropriate boundaries. Think “focused empath” rather than “depressed escapist.” The more you’re aware of how outer planet energies express themselves in your life, the more likely you’ll be to activate their highest potential.

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About Nadia Gilchrist

Nadia Gilchrist offers over 19 years of experience in astrology. Her writings and personal consultations focus on applying practical astrological analysis to the real world. Nadia blogs regularly at Ruby Slipper Astrology.


  1. That was an eye-opener. If you remove Jupiter to Pluto from my natal chart, there are exactly two (major) aspects left, so that article explains a lot about my life. Every one of my personal planets has a hard aspect with one or more of the outer planets. I know the article talks about two or more outer planets aspecting an inner planet, so I am concentrating on those combinations at the moment – all hard aspects first, and then the ones that have soft aspects in the mix second. Now I just need to get to grips with owning all that energy – once I figure out what it means. 🙂

  2. Hm. Interesting post; thanks. I have Venus, Jupiter and Saturn all tightly conjunct one another in Libra, and they are all semisquare my Uranus in Scorpio. A minor aspect, perhaps, but one that may point to a bit of conflict and rebellion. Will have to give this some more thought.

  3. Uncanny, Nadia. I’m the focused empath, and my friend is the depressed escapist. That’s it in a nutshell.

    I have a t-square with outer planets and inner ones, with pluto/uranus in virgo 12H, moon/venus/mars in sag 3H, and saturn in pisces 6H (using koch). I am getting to know how they limit me and what I am interested in now is next steps. I like what you say about owning the energy. What else might I consider? So far, my guesses are to trust my intuition (as progressed moon is transiting 12H), better boundaries, and instead of noticing limitation (childhood issues), it’s time to notice how I have expanded (uranus) my horizons and created stability (saturn) for myself (moon/venus/mars). I may have left the past behind, it’s time to notice I have found me!

    My poor friend, the depressed escapist, will have a transiting t-square with none other than neptune! He has saturn square neptune natally. Saturn looks emphasised to me, in 9H wide conjunct with MC and part of grand earth trine. His saturn is 13 virgo and neptune is 19 sag 1H. Years to go yet I know, but I already recognise the themes of ‘settling for less’, disappointment from childhood, repressed needs etc. I don’t know what you can say about it, but I thought it was interesting that he should have saturn/neptune square natally and along comes transiting neptune to oppose his saturn and dissolve what’s already dissolved!! Or how else might you interpret it? Is there anything good?

    Thanks, Nadia!

  4. How fascinating: i have uranus and neptune conjunct mars, which is my chart ruler and generally my main focus (aries sun, scorpio rising). I need to think about this and see what i can figure out!

    For some reason – possibly the fact that mars and saturn in the first house dominate my chart – i do not understand neptune at all. Like i have no clue how it works, what sort of events or feelings might have a neptune signature, and this is despite trying to figure it out for years.

    But i’ve come to a general understanding of this in my life for all the other major planets and chiron. Maybe this will be the thing that helps clarify?

  5. Now I look again at my and my friend’s charts, I see more aspects between outer and inner planets. I have neptune conjunct mercury, they sextile pluto/uranus conjunct, and trine saturn.
    Saturn and jupiter are part of my grand water trine with sun.

    My friend has uranus opposing moon. Uranus is at the midpoint between pluto and neptune, basepoints of the yod. It’s like uranus/moon is an arrow being aimed.
    He has jupiter/venus trine. Pluto/mars square.

    These are very hard aspects in our charts. I remember looking up something in his chart online once and it said something stupid like ‘this is the aspect of a loser’. How irresponsible! What would be great would be something that cancels out this kind of moronic astrology. Thanks, Nadia!

  6. @Kisses
    it could be freeing for him or it could lead to more disappointment. Depends on how he works with it.

  7. @AG
    Neptune resists clarification. It’s one of those things…the harder you try to understand, the more it slips away. The lack of understanding is Neptune, if that helps.

  8. My venus is conjunct my Uranus & pluto in Virgo 11th house. I have fluctuating friendships with women, and magnetic attractions with men. Women and men both come in & out of my life, nothing is stable. It is always changing. I am married but I’ve had affairs sporadically throughout. Never lasting always a wham bam thank you mam, then I throw them away, never wanting to go back again. There is always something lacking in the encounter & I become bored again. I’ve suggested an open marriage but it will not work for him. I’m trying to prevent any pain for him but he said no. I’ve been called seductress, not very complimentary. And my relationship with women is casual, not deep. I’m afraid of letting anyone see the real me. So topics are never personal. I don’t want anyone using what they know about me to harm me in some way. It’s my 1st house shared equally with libra & scorpio.

  9. Nadia, what overall theme would you make of a chart having only 2 aspects between the personal planets and all the other aspects being either being between the personal planets/outer planets and outer planets/outer planets (including Jupiter & Saturn)?

    Not asking for a chart reading here, just a thought on a significant imbalance in aspects…personal planets having very few aspects with each other.

  10. @Julie
    Someone who is more in touch with the energy of the collective than their own, personal issues. Depending on the chart, this can manifest as alienation from others or someone with the potential to speak for the group.

  11. Interesting…thanks!

  12. How very amusing.

    C.Jung stated what ever exists within us that we are not aware of, we attract to ourselves outwardly.
    We understand ourselves so little, then try to have relationships with ‘other’ poor souls.

    For example, Kisses (above blog) claims her friend is the depressed escapist. I would suggest she redefines what she thinks having Uranus/Pluto in the 12th house means.

    Astrology is open to interpretation, so we see what we want to. After that everything else is no doubt confusing, so we stay with what we think we know and hope that our situation will improve (This comment is directed to blog by Princess- I feel sorry for your husband). .

    In my opinion, we should not attempt to understand transpersonal energy (or anyone else) until we know ourselves first. The irony is that when we do get to “know thyself” as is written on the Delphi Temple, everything else ceases to mystify/confuse us.


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