The Chiron Return is an astrological turning point that happens to each of us between the ages of 48-52. Women think of this transitional time as the time of menopause, but men also experience a significant and life-altering change at this time.
In my book: “North Node Astrology; Rediscovering Your Life Direction and Soul Purpose” I wrote not just about the Nodes but quite a few chapters about these other major “passages”—mainly the Saturn Returns, the Uranus Opposition, and dealing with the challenges of both Pluto and Neptune transits. But, except for the chapter on the astrology of menopause, I didn’t really address the Chiron Return, and so I want to share some of what I know about it here; and as always, I welcome your comments.
The symbol of Chiron in your birth chart looks like a key: a circle with a k on top of it. Chiron has a sign and a house position in your chart and should be considered a significant factor when having an astrological reading. Chiron was a mythological character: a centaur who was both physically wounded and a profound teacher and mentor to others. Classically he is thought of as the archetype of the “Wounded Healer.” Looking at the sign and house of Chiron in your chart will help you understand how this archetypal planet operates in your life.
The Chiron Return life passage, around the age of fifty, is a time when our world can expand or shut down. It’s not an easy passage. We all create “fictions” about our life story and those of others close to us, and it’s at this point that we are challenged to enlarge the story of our lives—the story we tell ourselves about “how we each are and how it all is.” Those of us who aren’t flexible enough to adjust our “story lines” at this point, might find that our lives can change radically—Michael Jackson for instance, died at his Chiron Return. He was preparing for a world tour, a great expansion, but his old habits didn’t change.
Most of us have an urge at this time to expand our lives in some way, and we may feel tested in our faith and in our belief systems. It’s a good time to ask ourselves: what do I turn my back to? And—what am I bringing into my relationships—how can I create more harmony and more relatedness in my life? Chiron was wounded and in pain, yet he chose to relate to others by teaching everything he knew.
It is said that the “Chi energy” in the body begins to diminish at this age, but it’s also a time of summoning up a new perspective. Essentially we are called to enlarge the story of our lives at this point. Carl Jung, at his Chiron Return, enlarged the story of how he felt about other cultures by going to Africa and New Mexico in these years. He stepped out of the cultural limitations of a European White Man and looked at the world through different eyes. He expanded his world, and enlarged his understanding.
No transits happen before their time. When we are in our Chiron Return transit, new opportunities tend to open for us—and it’s a good time to say “yes” to whatever we are being summoned towards. Like the mythological Chiron, we have the choice to carry our own wounds and gifts with dignity and generosity or to project our problems and confusion outward. And the Chironic opportunity at this age is to open up to new visions of who we are and how it can all be, without becoming cynical or complaining. It ‘s a time that calls for courage. Sounds good to me!