Ready for a fresh start (while staying home, social distancing and hopefully not getting sick)?
So here we are…beginning Aries season in an unprecedented way as the world is among the threat of a very spreadable illness. I had to take moment to acknowledge the greater social context to this season. Still, I hope that those of us who are well and able will use the energy of this emergent season to challenge us to be helpful and in service to our communities, to our families and friends, and to strengthen ourselves.
Aries is all about meeting challenges head on. Aries strives to be the best they can be. Aries season also holds a boost of energy and vitality, one that’s especially needed after the reduced immunity and lethargy of Pisces season.
My prayer is that those of us who are well can practice ways to cultivate and SUSTAIN our own individual energy so we have the vitality to serve others and head boldly in a new direction. Aries goes to the end of field, the farthest it has ever gone. Being an explorer, Aries is drawn to cross the fence and venture into new territory. In order to do so they must confront the normal and protective fear that comes with crossing into the unknown. Through this process, Aries season brings embodied courage.
Tell me in the comments, what is your prayer/wish/intention/mantra/dream for Aries season?
The big question is…
How can we possibly move forward with the energy of spring when we are home-bound and possibly ill (and everything else that comes with that)? It’s very un-Aries like.
So much is still unknown. There are a couple of constants we can tune into: The emerging Sun brightening the days, warming the ground after winter. And the Earth, steady, solid, unwavering.
Whatever we can do to feel into the Sun and the Earth can help right us. A simple daily practice of feeling into the Sun (even if it’s rainy) for 5 minutes, and feeling into the Earth for 5 minutes, all while breathing deeply, is a great practice to start.
We as humans share this place between heaven and earth with Plants. At this time, we can look towards Plants to help continually return us to grounding while responding to the building of light. Plants are both more tuned into the Sun, because they (generally) eat photons of light, and the Earth, because they are (generally) physically rooted into soil.
If any of you reading this know me, then you know herbs are one of my favorite things. The overall personal and collective stress we feel right now can really respond to all types of herbs and preparations, from tea to flower essences to tinctures to herbal baths to gardening or bringing flowers into our space. Some of the herbs I am called to during Aries season include ones that balance mental stress and blockages in the head (Aries rules the head) such as Blue Vervain, Lycopus, Rosemary, Lavender, Peppermint, Albizzia, Hawthorn, Motherwort and Gotu Kola.
Welcome to Aries Season!
This time of year, AND the place where Aries is in your charts is where you:
- Are independent, in charge and self-reliant, actively pursuing your own aims
- Draw in successful and energetic new beginnings
- Move in independent directions, veering into our own path with ultimate trust
- Learn about how to have creative ownership while co-existing with others
- Have strong opinions and let others have their own, differing convictions
- Push yourself to do your very best, but not focus on always being the winner
- Focus your energy to double down and work in shorter bursts and get more done, then use your free time to explore new directions
- Feel the power – and limitations – of your willpower
- Know when to stop trying so hard and approach action from a series of smaller results, not always an immediate victory
- Experience what it’s like to be (or to want to be) the first, the best, a pioneer
- Trust your drive and not second-guess yourself
- See how you can cultivate bravery and courage in the face of the unknown and fear
Traditional ruler: Mars. Drive to go after your desires.
Element: Fire. Energy, creativity, action, excitement.
Modality: Cardinal. Initiates the season, direct, dynamic, meets life head-on.
Cardinal signs (Aries, Cancer, Libra, Capricorn) initiate each season, and Fire signs have the spark of energy to begin new journeys and projects. Aries season is especially initiatory, because it is the first sign of Astrological cycle that begins the great rebirth of spring, and because it is ruled by Mars which is the drive to search and claim ones space in the world and push oneself towards creative conception.
The Sun’s journey into through Aries comes with a marked change of pace from Pisces, the preceding sign. Pisces is filled with intense emotions and the nebulous feelings that somehow, in someway, what is above is below, what is within is without, and what happens to one happens to the collective.
In Aries, the Sun comes out of the womb-like waterworld of an interior life connected to invisible realms of whatever existence is before we are born. And the Sun is VERY happy to do so, it does not shine well in Pisces. However, the Sun is exalted in Aries, meaning it is strong in this sign, it is supported to fully shine as it is meant to with clarity, directness, and the ability to simply BE itself.
This time of year, we all experience the symbolic shining of the Sun in the sign of the Ram. The body is activated, our face and head reflect who we are to ourselves, to the world. The “self” is re-met and (hopefully) supported to be itself and celebrated. The emotional body takes a back-seat, which is often pretty welcomed after swimming in all the feels of Pisces season. The mental body is clear and simplified, but an ongoing drive to explore and possibly compete can create pressure in the head. Spiritually and energetically, we practice daily embodying in what it means to be ourselves in this lifetime.
Aries time of year is the one time where we get into what it means to be US. In modern, psychological astrology, Aries says “I AM” while all the other signs say “I AM ____”. This is the time to simply be yourself. The time to look into the mirror, literally. To think about not even what you want but who you are.
This is the time of year where we are anchored into our being. In Taurus we anchor into the Earth, in Gemini we anchor socially and mentally through communication.
Taurus is a sign of foundation. What’s one step behind making a foundation? Simply existing. Being here in your body and being you.
Aries’ symbol, the Ram, is known to be headstrong. It butts horns with others, fighting over a territory and hopefully winning a mate. We are more than our animal instincts, but we are not separate from them either. This time of year we all look at where we stand in this world. What place can we claim as our own? Do you have the drive to creatively conceive?
Astrologically, Aries is the opposite sign from Libra. Libra is the “We” and Aries is the “Me”. But Aries is also quite different from the preceding sign, Pisces. Pisces is all about connection, which is a needed reminder after going through the entire astrological wheel. It is through the vast one-ness of a primordial ocean that individuals can emerge.
This is the time of the great rebirth. Western astrology is Western-centric, and Aries was assigned to be associated with spring.
I hope that during this time of year you find new energy and a fresh perspective on what it means to be YOU. Not you in a relationship, not you as a provider, not you as a parent, not you as an artist but simply you. The roles we wear are a part of us and we can’t always slough them off. Yet, during this time of year, I must encourage you to take moments to hang up the garments of our roles and simply feel what YOU feel like. Then the ability to express ourselves within those roles will gain the gift of our own self-blessings.
One way to tap into what it means to be YOU is to take a child-like, playful and discovery lens to the world and yourself. Children are born into their world surrounded with ancestral heritage, cultural beliefs, past lives if you believe in that, roles put upon them, talents, skills and a unique personality, but they are many times when they are less aware of this history then adults are. They are often just themselves. And a part of this is because they are still in a discovery process of being open. During this time of year, we can re-discover ourselves.
To get a feel for what it might be like for us during this time of year, let’s keep in mind the keywords for Aries.
- Competitive, willing to face challenges head-on, courageous
- Adventure, exploration, pioneering, trail-blazing, discovery
- Self-focused, self-contained, independent
- New beginnings, creative, innocent, fresh, child-like
- Healthy, athletic, vital, energetic, vibrant
- Authentic, honest, brave, headstrong
- Action-taking, daring, risk-taking, reckless
- Impatient, forceful, spontaneous, aggressive
- Feisty, assertive, quick to anger, truthful
- Warm, charming, magnetic, attractive
Aries Season Workbook
The last couple Astro Embodiment blog entries were quiiiiite long. This time I decided to organize the main points into a downloadable workbook with all the details about Aries Season.
This 11 page workbook includes:
- Info on Aries season style of embodiment for the physical body, food and eating, movement, emotional body, mental body, spiritual and energetic body, stones, colors and herbs.
- Journal prompts.
- Post-season reflection questions.
- Aries Keywords and components of Aries season and the Aries area of our chart from this blog post, organized together.
- You know it’s going to have the Portland fresh spring flowers of the moment: Current, Apple Blossoms, Daffodils…
You can get your own copy sent to you right here:
Working with Fear
“So, first of all, let me assert my firm belief that the only thing we have to fear is…fear itself — nameless, unreasoning, unjustified terror which paralyzes needed efforts to convert retreat into advance.”
Franklin D Roosevelt March 4th 1933.
One of the lessons of Aries season is working with fear as a way to courage. This is because the scouting energy of this sign brings us to the boundary of what has been done and where we have gone before. To traverse the edge of the known into the unknown, we confront the natural protective energy of our brain, which in its efforts to keeps us safe, has taught us to fear the unknown. Fear serves to keep us physically, emotionally, energetically secure.
Aries is always pushing us further and farther. In following our wanderings, we come up against the invisible barbed-wire fence produced by our limbic system that separates us from the wide open spaces on their other side.
Working with fear is important work. Sometimes, fear is truly preventing us from impending harm. Most of the time, I see fear as a natural, instinctual reaction that we can recognize and negotiate with.
This is where courage comes in. There’s an old saying: Courage is having fear but doing it anyways. The times where I have chosen (or was forced to, like moments before giving birth to my second child) to traverse the barbed-wire fence of fear into the unknown, I have repeated that saying to myself. Fear, I see you, and I REALLY feel you. But we can do this.
This time of year, we may feel those fearful on-the-precipice moments and yet be able to cross through them with a little more ease, more awareness and more power. Now that I think about it, my daughter was born during an Aries Moon, and birth in general is related to the Moon. Perhaps when I said “courage is having fear but doing it anyways”, I was tapping into the Aries Moon to help me through the fear of the ungodly pain of birth.
Failure Tolerance as Liberation
Caroline Myss says that “Courage is a verb”, and that the only way to build confidence and courage is to act. You cannot read a book about courage and become courageous. This has been an important part of my own journey, especially since like so many other female-identified people, I have, in my fear, clung to perfectionism.
One of the most radical acts I have ever done is to practice failing. Rob, my husband (a very bold Sag sun), noticed that I was playing it safe in a game we were playing. He sensed my fear (this was a game – still, I was scared to fail!). He dared me to fail repeatedly. Just try and lose. It was PHYSICALLY challenging for me to do this, that was how much my brain was wired to be afraid of failing. I was literally shaking, wincing, freaking out.
In the end, I did it! I failed! I lost a game on purpose. I felt incredible, I was so proud of myself.
But then the most amazing thing happened. The more I practiced failing, the more I began to win, and win BIG. I went for the biggest risks and, because I wasn’t afraid, they often paid off. It was liberating.
I told my friends about this amazing exercise Rob helped me through, and they started to do it too. Even failing at a silly game – it was hard for every one of them. But the payoff was incredible. Not only did they too lose the crippling fear of failure, but they all started to win big, too. Not that winning is the point – hear me on this. It’s that we were all able to show up and play the game with a wider range of ourselves present, and that was much, much more enjoyable.
Years later, a friend from grad school invited me over to play a game. It was Ticket to Ride, the same game from which I learned how to fail. I warned her, “ah, just to let you know, this is the game that I learned how to fail from, and I am really good at it”. At the end of a few rounds, where I won big each time, she asked me to teach her how to fail, too.
This is only the beginning in speaking about failure tolerance. Really, what good is learning how to fail in a game when it is real life that matters? It’s a work in progress, for sure, but since that breakthrough with the game, I have been embracing failure as a gift of learning and applying it to areas of my life, sometimes more than others. It truly is an ongoing, almost daily practice of building the courage to try and fail.
Defining and owning “Self-Care” and “Authenticity”
Social media culture transformed some good, meaningful words into hashtags, and they get old and overused fast. One of those is “self-care”, which has taken a spiritual materialized spin, another is “authentic”, now the goal of a million influencers-to-be. Ironically, some of the most well-known social media marketers who first talked about “being authentic” (Jasmine Star, for one) now say that “authentic” is a word you should never use to try to describe yourself – simply because it is overuse it has lost meaning.
Despite their trendiness, this TRULY is the time to be TRUE to yourself and tend to your “self” and be you. This isn’t a tending to your body, or to your healing, or to your goals or plans or dreams, although these may be a part of it. But to the SELF part of yourself.
The funny thing for me is that it’s really hard to define what a SELF is because it’s so simple. It’s basically just me. Not what other people think, not what culture has taught me to be, not my past life or ancestry, not my jobs or roles. It’s not only my physical body, but that’s a part of it. It’s the piece of my soul that has incarnated as a spirit into this body and life at this time.
How do you define “self”? What is your cosmology about who you are, about who any of us are? Now is perhaps the best time of year to make those definitions for ourselves.
Once you know what “self” means to you, how do you tend to it?
I ask this question in earnest, because I really want to know… I’m still figuring that out. Perhaps Aries season will give me clues to what my “self” really wants to be cared for. One thing is for sure, you never have to question your worth or value. That is always a given. There’s nothing you can do to be more deserving, and there’s never punishment pending because you were unworthy.
Aries Sovereignty Meditation Exercise
This has been an exercise I have used in times when I felt energetically porous, such as in times of picking up a lot of psychic debris or emotions that are not mine.
Maybe you are wondering why I would recommend this now? Aries season is not an emotionally porous time of year, it’s true. Yet I think this is a fabulous time to feel into our energetic sovereignty, because since the “self” is activated and boosted, making the act of tuning into our energetic self even more solid and helpful.
Our health is basically the same of every layer. Prevention is the best medicine. This goes for the physical body as it is for the emotional, mental, spiritual and energetic parts of us.
It is far, far easier to maintain a healthy immune system than to have to rescue one on the verge of getting sick in January, or to completely rebuild not just the immune system but the entire body and being after a chronic or intense infection or environmental pathogen. And the same goes for the energetic parts of us.
About this exercise: This is a short embodied visualization and can be done multiple times a day if desired. It is an exercise to claim our energetic space and feel what it feels like to be totally you.
Golden Light of Sovereignty Exercise
- Sit, stand or lay down, breath into your body. Ground.
- Imagine shimmery golden light pouring into the crown of your head. Fell into the simultaneous density and spaciousness of the golden light.
- Follow the shimmery golden light as it flows down from your head, arms, back, belly, pelvis, legs and down to your feet.
- As you image the golden light filling your body, repeat as a mantra/affirmation something like “this is me, this is my body, I am maintaining this space, I am filled with golden light”.
- FEEL and sense what YOU feel like as you see the golden light, think or say “this is my arm, this is my other arm, this is my neck, these are my shoulders…”.
- Eventually your entire self will be filled with shimmering golden light. When you are totally golden, maintain the entirely golden state within your imagination and breathe into your body three times. “This is me, this is my body, this is my energy”.
- As you finish, give thanks for your time with yourself and your body.
Be well, my Astro friends. I know a lot is going on, but we can make it through with a little of that golden ray of Aries courage.
Take good care,