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Aries Confidential (for Sun and ascendant)

By Eric Francis

Aries (March 20-April 19)

“You do not ask too much of life, but rather far too little,” says A Course in Miracles. Maybe this is why transits to the 10th house — one’s highest goals and aspirations — are so challenging. Maybe it’s why we tend to discount their potential, or find these rare events inaccessible.

You have one such transit now, Pluto in Capricorn, your solar 10th house. This transit doesn’t stand alone: it’s the key component in the 2012 configuration, and it’s getting plenty of support and attention today. In many ways this is your calling to success, to achievement, even to your personal definition of greatness. Yet you may be wondering if you have what it takes to achieve even your modest goals. Over and over, I’ve seen people struggle with outer planets going through their 10th house, calling them to higher aspirations; signaling that something more is possible.

In fact, it is possible. Yet for you, this exists under the sole condition that you take leadership. Pluto in Capricorn, your solar 10th house, can definitely be read as the quest for achievement. It can be read as ambition, drive, ruthlessness and seeking power or authority. The subtler, more relevant expression of this is about leadership. And a vital aspect of that leadership involves how feminine power is applied. Capricorn is a feminine sign. Pluto is serving as an evolutionary force for you and for the world, not exactly feminine on its own, but energizing a feminine principle: you might call it conservation; or you could describe it as leadership by demonstrated growth.

We tend to expect our leaders to storm forward on our behalf, solving problems and creating opportunities. But we have little context for the notion that people who lead must also grow, and that is a vital part of their leadership. This is your story, as far as I am reading it in your astrology. Above all else, you must be willing to grow, and grow openly where others can see and feel and experience the process; indeed, participate in the process.

This mandate is coming at you from all directions right now, for example, in your most personal relationships and important professional partnerships. Remember that what you do in these relationships is the most crucial expression of your leadership role. In the world the way it is now, we all have some growing up to do. The ways you can foster this in your own life include working with a clear agenda; being aware of your commitments and what they require; and knowing what is really your responsibility and what is not.

The Rise of the Feminine?

There’s a trendy discussion some places about raising the power of feminine energy in the world, as a means of global healing. This falls under the general heading of, “The Goddess is coming back and she will save us,” a kind of Wiccan second coming that may happen in one day in the Whole Foods Market in Jerusalem. Many who want to fix the world have a notion that masculine power is taking over like a runaway train, and that is the cause of all our ills. After all, look at how many men are still in charge, and look at how much damage they do.

I have a different theory. For the sake of this discussion, let’s describe feminine energy as being emotional/intuitive/feeling/impulsive and masculine energy as being mental/reasoning/thinking/rational. I am not describing men and women, per se, but rather feminine and masculine modes of thought, as we understand them in the 21st century.

At the moment, the world seems driven not by rationality but by emotion; moved not by reason, but by feeling: most of it is fear. If the United States invaded Iraq just because we felt like it (which was basically the reason: fear), that was not based on rationality; there was no precise outcome or actual attainable intention stated. Considering life on a smaller scale, if we donate to relief efforts because we feel like we should, that is not the same as a reasoning process, “If I give to this particular organization, which I understand to be responsible, it is likely to do this particular good on the ground where it needs to go.” Just punch in those numbers into your text message and $10 and you feel better about yourself.

Without looking far, we could come up with example after example of how our culture short-circuits reason in pursuit of either following impulses or pursuing a feeling or a fantasy rather than a tangible result. If you ask me, the world is being driven by runaway toxic feminine energy rather than masculine energy. Yes, men are still the ones mostly in charge; all the worse. Congress seems driven by its petty competitive impulses rather than by any goal or notion of what is possible. The implements of war are not secure in the hands of people who have no actual concept of a reasoning process. Our whole economy is being driven by a fear or a feel-good impulse.

Not, for example, by practical need. Not by ethics. Not by reality. And guess what: if your astrology means anything at all, you emerge into yourself and into the world as a leader of precisely these things: as one whose role is to set the example of a life well lived, and as a person with the capacity to change, to grow and to hold yourself to a measure of impeccability.

You are visible, and you’re about to become a lot more visible. While transits always come ‘for better or for worse’, the goal of astrology is clearly to change our lives for the better.

Uranus in the 12th House and Pisces

Let’s do something bold and start your reading not with the 1st house but rather the 12th house: the one before the beginning. In solar or Sun sign astrology (such as we do in horoscopes), Aries is your 1st house and therefore Pisces is your 12th. The 12th is the one behind the scenes; the subconscious or unconscious; the world of dreams and visions and things that don’t quite make sense. This is the house of rich inspiration and unlimited possibilities (particularly with Pisces hanging around). For seven years, you have had Uranus in that house. That’s another way of saying extremely restless, feeling all the possibilities, and acting impulsively and without a plan to make them happen.

Big, potent planets in the 12th — Uranus counts — bestow a restless feeling (Uranus counts for bonus points here), but often the source of that restlessness is not obvious. It’s there somewhere, lurking in the background, like a disturbance in another room that we feel ‘indirectly’. But we experience it nonetheless. This is a great placement for the imagination but it’s not so useful for getting things done. Uranus in the 12th has no ‘goals’ but it may well be running your life. Part of how it may be doing so is through the influence of constant anxiety; vivid, bold, illustrated, emotional psychic anxiety. Not the kind you need Xanax for; the kind you need to work out with a shaman.

If you know you should be or want to be feeling ambitious or at least working for concrete achievements, but you cannot quite seem to get a grip, let’s remember that you have a significant source of psychic disturbance lingering behind the veil of your awareness. That changes this year, as Uranus dips into your sign for the first time in your lifetime and indeed for the first time in more than 75 years. Uranus in Aries is monumental; it may be one of the most significant known astrological events, because when Uranus makes a move, it does so with such passion. The first degree of Aries is called the Aries Point, and this is significant to the whole world as well as to you.

Not only does Uranus enter your sign, but it does so close on the heels of Jupiter. The Jupiter-Uranus conjunction is the central event that sets the tone of 2010 and 2011, and it takes place in your sign. The implication is nothing short of total personal reinvention for you, and for this, you will need a strong foundation; you will need grounding. Before I describe more of this astrology and its implications, I want to offer this: everything that you create in your life, and everything that happens to you, depends for its success on your emotional grounding. Said another way, the one factor — and it may be a missing factor — is having a strong sense of authority over your emotional dimension.

In this article and in the rest of Cosmic Confidential, you will read a lot about the T-square in the cardinal signs: Aries, Libra and Capricorn: the missing sign is Cancer. The sign Cancer is about one thing, for your purposes: having a sense of emotional self-control, which is to say, inner authority over your feelings. I don’t mean tyranny; I mean the ability to not be ruled by an emotional process that feels somehow ‘different than you.’

What you may have noticed is that the control mechanisms have begun to impose themselves from the outside first; people and situations have begun imposing boundaries, limits and goals on your life. This, we can credit to Saturn in your opposite sign, Libra. But that is not quite the feeling you are going for; not quite what either of us would describe as maturity. To be an adult means to have that boundary-setting function coming from inside rather than from any external source.

Your life so far has felt like a buildup to something: the sense that you would play some unusual role in the world. This has provided you with the assurance that you belong on the planet, but the tangible objective has eluded your awareness. Now, you have an objective in sight and the thing you need to manifest is a sense of full inner alignment between yourself, your environment, and your specific goals. And I do mean specific: the astrology that is influencing you is too powerful to be left to chance, or to take a ride and see what happens. In my reading, the teaching goal is to guide you into an understanding of the necessity of working with desire and intentions.

So while we are here, let’s consider the effects of Mars retrograde.

Mars Retrograde in Leo: Your 5th Solar House

Mars is a significant planet for you because it’s the traditional ruler of Aries. In the tarot spread of astrology, Mars is one of the planets that represent you. Currently, Mars is doing something fancy: it’s retrograde (that is rare) and it’s retrograde in Leo (rarer still). One remaining vestige of the winter astrological madness is Mars seeming to spin backwards in Leo, which it will be doing till March. But this has special significance for you, and it focuses on the level of desire and intention: the 5th is one of the most creative zones of the horoscope, and for you it has everything to do with where identity, sexuality and creativity meet.

A major transit to the 5th house — and this one certainly qualifies, even on a global scale — is an image of self-exploration, though it exists in the context of relationship. There is a strong sense of an internal reality being reflected in an external reality. We are told this is true, but we rarely experience the benefits. The 5th is like an inner territory that we explore in the world, through experience. Mars in Leo is you, exploring this territory. Except for one bit — for about three months, Mars is going to be retrograde, emphasizing the inner quality of this quest.

One thing you’re about to learn is why most people are not more creatively and sexually daring than they are. The reason: something is in the way. You could call it fear or inhibition, but there are reasons those inhibitions exist, and the idea behind this transit is to help you unravel them.

The 5th is like a dramatized version of the 12th — the house of fantasy and deep fears — but in the 5th, fantasy becomes experiential. It is explored through experiments that change us. Potentially, it’s a hot oven. But most often, the heat is contained underneath the ground of the normal world, burrowing into a kind of underworld of consciousness, where we find a vast catacomb of experience, memory, need and desire.

What Mars reveals will be an aspect of your inner creative quest that you usually hide even from yourself. The creative force of this house is about burning exotic karma, the psychic material from the crevices of generational awareness. It’s the house of kids and also the house where we keep some residue left over from our own childhood. It has a 12th house feeling of something veiled, and what is veiled is our own perception of childhood; the clutter we wake up to in our baby room that is simply stated all this stuff that our parents are dragging around. They/we don’t necessarily dispense with any material in passing it on; it’s just extended another generation.

Mars retrograde says: 1. Inner quest. 2. References to the past. 3. The exploration of the desires that we normally deny, and have denied in the past. So the emphasis here is less about exploring relationships, sex and art as expression, and entirely about exploring your relationship to yourself, exploring sex as an expression of self-awareness, and using your creative process as an inner journey that changes you and then feeds your expressive fire.

Because we live in a sexually and creatively repressed society, most of the energy and passion inherent in this house is trapped by things like denial, self-repression and maintaining our pride. You can be sure that to the extent that you experience boredom, you have denied your passion — and this transit is here to help you find it again.

Yet this whole process exists within a larger context, and that is the context of the people you know, and the ‘personal society’ that they form. And part of that involves how we have our sexual relationships, in particular, with the presumption of monogamy and then so many issues involving monogamy. Try as we may to relate only to one person, many people experience the presence of others who we want to share with, experience and relate to. But the social rules and norms of our culture barely even allow us to admit this to others. So we have to lock up our desires, generally out of the fear of not being accepted by others; and of being outcast from the groups we live in, particularly our friends. Too often, we try to define ourselves in ways that are acceptable to others — and now you are being challenged to define yourself in a way that is acceptable to yourself alone.

The opposite of the 5th house is the 11th house — and for you this is Aquarius. As you may know, there have been profound developments in Aquarius through 2009 (which are the culmination of many years of Neptune and Chiron in this sign). It would be fair to say that, if you look, you will see a whole new kind of social opportunity opening up because you are meeting people who are more open-minded — but this is challenging you to be yourself. You no longer have to project outward your negative expectations or a feeling of being trapped in who your friends think you are.

While this transit is about finding yourself, it’s really about finding your ability to be yourself in the face of social pressures to be someone else; in the face of influences to be who others want you to be, rather than who you are. So as you make your discoveries, remember: this is you, regardless of what others think. And this may have a lot to do with your sexuality. I am one of those philosophers who not only believes but understands that this nexus of identity-sexuality-creativity is very much the heart of the matter where humans are concerned.

If we can be clear with ourselves about our sexuality, we can find the courage to be clear about everything else. This is usually the first place we’re forced to compromise; and once that compromise is made, it’s usually downhill from there. So this is the point to focus your momentum in the right direction. Mars turns direct in the first degree of Leo on March 10. It will remain in Leo for three more months, covering the entirety of that sign. This stretch, from March 10 through June 7, presents you with an excellent opportunity to apply all that you have learned and investigated within yourself all winter long.

And that, my friend, is just in time for one of the most interesting, beautiful and meaningful astrological events of your lifetime. Yes, for all of us, but particularly for you: Jupiter conjunct Uranus in Aries. I will devote the rest of this reading to that aspect, and put everything else in its context. Track back to the discussion about Uranus in Pisces for the past seven years, which I began with; then imagine all that pressure letting up and the fear, creativity, anxiety, and emerging as a fully integrated person, ready to take action.

Long-Awaited Developments

You may possess memories from childhood of your fully integrated nature, which was viewed by adults as a lack of inhibition, bravery and unusually vivid imagination. Yet in many ways that imagination has been trapped inside of you, bursting to be set free.

You are born under one of the cardinal signs — the signs that bring the fire of initiative of the astrological energy system. Many planets are moving onto what is called the Cardinal Cross, with the main emphasis on Aries, Libra and Capricorn. The most stunning is the conjunction of Jupiter and Uranus right in your solar ascendant: that is, directly on the first degree of Aries: the mighty Aries Point. No aspect in astrology says personal revolution quite like this one.

There are likely to be moments when you feel total frustration with your growth process. You may feel like your mind has some issue from which you cannot heal. Any such moment is the time to go straight to faith: faith in yourself, and faith in something larger than yourself. Remember, you may have doubts, but you are not your doubts. Remember that, and you can become the person you want to be: the one who is not defined by your fears. While in many ways this aspect is a harbinger of the future — and of your future self — it is a rare threshold moment for you to reconstruct not just your self-image and your self-concept, but to connect with your deepest sense of both identity and purpose.

Here is a key: that sense of purpose does not come from outside you. You don’t come from outside you. If we look at the consciousness as a cause and effect model, the world is there because you perceive it. Yes, it was there first, but your world is the product of your mind, your experience and your relationships; all of which have you in common.

While you are going through this deep personal reinvention, there are two transits that are seemingly more external in nature: Saturn in Libra and Pluto in Capricorn. Saturn in Libra represents the reshaping of your concept of relationships. It’s about finding both working boundaries and viable meeting places.

Many people experience Saturn in the 7th as a time of enforced changes, which have a structural root. That root goes deep into what we feel free enough to do, based on the limitations we were told that we had, or were expected to live with. Saturn is exalted in Libra — that means it has dignity and strength. I suggest that you put Saturn in the 7th house to work for you, in service of providing you with a relationship framework for who you are becoming. Saturn points to necessity. One necessity is to be honored for who you are — not who people think you are, or who you think you should be, in their eyes. To do this, you will need to select partners on the basis of affirming you rather than denying you; on the basis of offering cooperation rather than competition.

Be aware of the extent to which we in our society use relationships for the sake of image. Many pick partners for the sake of appearances. We live by rules that allegedly provide us with an “enhanced image” of purity, of status, of fidelity, of success, but which get projected into our encounters with others; or which become the basis for choosing partners, having nothing to do with who we are. The main thing you need to know about is that relationships based on appearances will no longer work; and that the facets of your relationships that are based on appearances need to go to a deeper level.

Yet the way Saturn works, this may appear in another form — such as reaching a limit on intimacy within a current involvement; and you will need to develop the theme first inside yourself, and then take it to your partner(s). Said in a single word, this is about treating any problem you face in a relationship as an opportunity to develop your integrity.

That integrity may include recognizing when a relationship is no longer right for you. Even if you have come to this conclusion before, and could not make the changes because you lacked confidence, you are now far likelier to have the guts, the incentives and the faith necessary to respond to your circumstances in a way that affirms your right to exist. If you are feeling hemmed in by a relationship, or a relationship structure, I suggest you address it sooner rather than later; the truth is you have much more important things to do.

Putting the Pieces Together

The same is true for your professional goals, which can no longer be seen as something outside yourself, or as apart from your relationships. When you start to reach for significant achievement, the agenda has to come from within you. Pluto in Capricorn in the 10th house is about power, plain and simple. It’s the power to change, it’s about authority in the world and over others, and it’s about building the world that you want to live in.

In fact it is too much power for most people; though you have the ability to tap into your inherent ethics and do the right thing: if you are doing the right thing. The right thing is what you actually want. Pluto in Capricorn may be compelling you to set some high goals for yourself. That is the only way you are safe with this much energy in your hands: knowing what you want to do with it.

Check out this interesting twist: the ruler of Capricorn, Saturn, is in your relationship house. This binds together the issue of your activity in the world with your relationships, in a potentially very powerful way because of the tangible opportunities that may manifest. Yet at times you may have the feeling that your relationships are in the way of your career. This is why working for the cooperation factor is so significant; why making sure that the people who are around you support who you are is one of the essences of your life.

But let’s go deeper. Both of these placements are saying that you are in ‘deprogramming mode’ from family of origin material around work, relationships and many other aspects of your life. Anyone claiming the freedom to exist is going to spend a good bit of time identifying past influences and addressing them. The sense of these slow-moving worlds touching these particular angles of your chart is sending you the message that something has to change, or else. I would remind you that because Saturn and Pluto move relatively slowly, setting goals and focusing your energy from day to day, in the long run, is the way to maximize the benefits of this setup.

There is something here about your relationship to responsibility. Responsibility is something we learn from our parents, by example and by lecture; be it beneficial or detrimental. It is a concept passed through the generations, with roots in the Bible and the oldest versions of human law; with much input added by government, school and church du jour. All this collects in a morass of theory that more resembles a toxic waste dump than a useful set of instructions.

Generally, our concept of responsibility is toxic — loaded with guilt. And this is precisely where to aim your deprogramming efforts. Guilt is unlearned; it can be unlearned and this is a process. Your best ally in this is Pluto in Capricorn. Think of this transit as an evolutionary beacon, calling you to a state of both individual responsibility and freedom.

The energy, and your energy, are going to rise this year: hotter and more intense than you’ve ever experienced. You are safe, as long as you have guiding principles, the first of which must be to balance freedom and responsibility.

It is fair to say that you are being dealt a wildcard: the option to do precisely what you want. But that is only meaningful in one context: that you know what you want, and are willing to take the clear-headed, grounded and rational steps to getting there.

6 Responses to “Aries Confidential (for Sun and ascendant)”

  1. Lisa says:

    This horoscope has left me shaking…. shaking with excitement as it’s on so many levels, given me confirmation for what has been happening in my life, and what seems to be coming to a head of sorts… It’s blowing my mind… so much so that I can’t adequately articulate my thoughts so I’ll come back and add to this… * Lisa

  2. Veronica says:

    Integrity.

  3. BWhite says:

    I think you have a typo. Isn’t Mars in Leo, transiting back to zero degrees of Leo and will turn direct March 10, and will move forward in Leo again until June 7, when it enters Virgo? So, don’t you mean “Mars turns direct in the first degree of Leo” (rather than in the first degree of Aries) in this passage from the 11th paragraph in the section about Mars retrograde:

    “Mars turns direct in the first degree of Aries on March 10. It will
    remain in Leo for three more months, covering the entirety of that sign.”

    Surely, you mean Mars turns direct in the first degree of Leo on March 10?

  4. Melissa says:

    Wow, I feel so reassured about everything I have been going through and the prospect for the future. Its like someone was with me all year and inside me with my inner most thoughts…only wish I would have read it sooner… This has meant so much to me, thank you x

  5. Thank you – I liked this post.

  6. Miss V- says:

    I love you Eric Francis Coppolino!!!

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