I wouldn’t be surprised if Jupiter transits are the most common astrological technique used, particularly by beginners. Which is unfortunate, because they’re incredibly unreliable, and in terms of the astrologer-client relationship they cause more trouble than they’re worth.
It’s easy to see why Jupiter transits are so popular. Firstly Jupiter is the planet of good luck. Secondly they’re easy to spot. Thirdly they’re relatively uncommon.
So if I have a client with their Venus at 15 degrees Gemini, I can say that on April 18 2013 transiting Jupiter will be conjunct their Ascendant. I don’t need to calculate anything, I don’t even need a computer – I can look it up in a table of the planets’ positions. As for rarity, this transit will occur every twelve years or so.
When I first started practicing astrology, I would get very excited about Jupiter transits, and I would tell my clients that they would coincide with wonderful events. In terms of love, I would of course predict that transiting Jupiter would coincide with romantic fulfillment.
Unfortunately, the promised results hardly ever happened. Matters were made worse by anticipation. You tell someone that something good is going to happen… they wait and wait… and nothing.
However in my experience the situation is very different with Saturn. Saturn transits, which are often connected with frustration, delay and negativity, are much more effective. When I make a forecast on the basis of Saturn, I can be reasonably confident that I am describing real events and real feelings.
This was born out by a statistical study I recently did, comparing Jupiter and Saturn transits, in very specific circumstances. I actually got statistical significance for Saturn, but absolutely nothing for Jupiter.
I am not saying that Jupiter transits are entirely useless, especially when dealing with the angles (ie the Ascendant, Descendant, Midheaven and IC). For example, for twelve years I did contract work for the Orange mobile phone network – doing text and voice horoscopes. I got the job in 1996, when Jupiter crossed my Midheaven. I lost the job in 2008, also when Jupiter crossed my Midheaven.
I have seen other cases of people losing jobs with a Jupiter transit of their Midheaven, so the transit could go either way, depending on the situation. Also, Jupiter crossing an angle can represent a change of luck, that can persist for years.
Going back to working with clients, one thing an astrologer must never do is create unreal expectations. There is pressure to do this, but you have to resist it. And you must, in my experience, never forecast good news on the basis of a Jupiter transit alone – especially the kind of news that doesn’t have to be worked for. I say this because Jupiter transits can encourage laziness and complacency. If you tell a client that when Jupiter transits their Venus their love life will move into top gear, then you’re encouraging them to passively wait for the predicted event. Also, the more you expect something, the less likely it is to happen.