This is the eighth installment of a new series of interpretations of the astrological symbol set. For interpretations of Planets in Signs, Planets in Houses and Planets in Aspect, please see the Depth Astrology series at the Smashwords e-publishing site, https://www.smashwords.com/books/byseries/13223 .
The dynamics of sign-to-sign relationships can be useful not only in the interpretation of compatibility charts; they can also add information to the interpretation of planetary aspects. As with other symbol set interpretations, the juxtaposition of the essential energies of each sign is the starting off point for exploring their meanings.
This series continues with
Aries-Scorpio and will end with Pisces-Pisces, working around
the zodiacal wheel factorially
with a new zodiacal combination presented each month. Past month’s
articles are archived. Upon completion,
some 6 years from now, Insha’Allah, these articles will
immediately be published as an e-book for sale.
With Aries-Scorpio, we have the combination of Fire and Water, Cardinal and Fixed. The character of the interaction between these two signs (and containers present in the two signs) is the natural quincunx, or inconjunct, aspect that exists between the two signs. This is the "eighth house" wing of the quincunx symbolizing that the resolution to the "critical dynamic" inherent in the quincunx is through polarization followed by profound transformation. Out-of-sign trines and oppositions are also possible between containers in these signs with planets in very early or late Aries.
Interpreting the Aries-Scorpio combination may also shed some light on a number of related symbol sets. These include Aries in the eighth house, Scorpio in the first house, Mars in the eighth house, Mars in Scorpio, Pluto in the first house, Pluto in Aries (if prominent or aspected) and Mars-Pluto aspects.
As a reminder, “container” is used here as a general term designating a planet whether in one’s own chart or another’s. When in another’s chart, “container” may practically be viewed to mean the other person. So that the analysis doesn’t wind up seeming too cold and depersonalized, I will sometimes use the personal pronoun (you) in lieu of the impersonal “container.” Recognize that either term can refer to a planetary energy within you or your relationship with another person.
The quincunx suggests an innate disconnect between the two signs. In its fixed state, Water is not in conflict with Fire; rather it is disassociated from that element. The two energies co-exist but without much interaction. There is also the suggestion of a disconnect between the deep subconscious and its Will to transform (Pluto’s rulership of Scorpio) and the desire/action function (Mars’ rulership of Aries). Of course, we should also remember that, in classical astrology, Mars ruled both Aries and Scorpio and we can ask what, if anything, this signifies.
There is likely to be
a feeling expressed by/through the Aries and Scorpio
containers that they really do not have very much in common. This lack of
commonality, however, while suggesting that there is no great
attraction pulling the two containers toward each other, would
seem to allow Aries and Scorpio to lead parallel lives,
mutually interested in their differences and content to allow
each other the freedom to pursue their own interests and
inherent quality of the quincunx is the “critical
dynamic”—the propensity for the two disassociated
energies/containers to be forced to interact, integrate
and/or learn lessons from each other in the face of some
or interacting, the crisis is resolved and you progress to a
higher level of development.
Failing to meet the challenge of the critical
dynamic, the crisis remains unresolved, not infrequently
with disastrous consequences, and the critical situation is
bound to reoccur, in one form or another, to be repeated
until you get it right.
Thus, it is likely that the disassociation and lack of engagement between Aries and Scorpio will not last. Rather, it may be the case that their relationship is punctuated by crisis situations that demand a rising to the challenge and entering a new developmental phase. Aries and Scorpio, therefore, can be seen to exist in a potentially mutually instructive and change-inducing relationship.
For Aries, the nature of this relationship, in its crisis mode, is likely to be a focus on various forms or levels of transformation, which may include issues related to power and empowerment, the need to bring insight to action, or the destruction and transformation of old patterns of desire and action. In the Aries-Scorpio relationship, Aries is likely to have reached a developmental stage where continuing at your present level of development would be self-limiting. The Aries container is called upon to purge him/herself of patterns and attitudes that have become obsolete or were conceived in a state of immaturity and are now holding you back from achieving the full potential symbolized by the Aries energy.
Aries’ innocence may have lingered in a state of unsustainable naiveté, even possibly a fabricated naiveté through which you choose to deny evident realities and avoid your responsibilities. By lingering in this state, you are perpetuating your own powerlessness. You may feel that you can do anything you want but your ego-driven actions are ultimately whimsical and arbitrary and have no lasting effect. In essence, your actions lack power. At worst, your naiveté may lead to you being fair game for those who would control and manipulate you--so easy because you think that you are the one deciding your actions. At a higher level, this is exactly our state relative to the Cosmos. In our naiveté regarding how the mind-material Universe works, we blindly believe that we are masters of our actions when, in reality, we are mere puppets. A mystic once said that there are two kinds of puppets. The Realized puppets know that behind them their strings are being pulled and they are dancing in tune with the Cosmic Harmony; the unrealized puppets are not aware of the strings and, so, think that they are themselves dancing.
A variant of the disconnect between action and power is that the Aries container may not be aware of the power inherent in his/her actions. This is also a form of powerlessness in the sense that you are not really in control of your actions because you are not aware of their consequences. The Scorpio container may also be unaware of the power of the Aries container's actions and, so, the struggle for control (of your actions) all plays out at the subconscious level.
The route to this next developmental level is through an often long and tortuous process of deep introspection, the polarization of negative and positive energies, confrontation with our dark side or Shadow, and purging/integrating/transforming our negativity into positive Force. It is also likely to involve getting in touch with our own inner Source of power, as well as discarding lower forms of expression of that Power. This may very well entail a cleansing of desires. This transformative process will likely be triggered, and will be the solution to, some crisis tied to the Aries-Scorpio disassociation.
Another manifestation of the natural quincunx relationship between Aries and Scorpio may be the presence of a disconnect between your emotions, particularly subconscious or instinctual drives, and your actions (or between the deeply felt emotions and subconscious drives of the Scorpio actor and the actions of the Aries actor). There is not so much conflict between emotional will and action as there is unawareness. Consequently, the Scorpio container is likely to express him/her/itself subconsciously or surreptitiously to exercise or project his/her/its power on the Aries container. Correspondingly, the Aries container is likely to trigger an emotional response from the Scorpio container, to "push their buttons," most often without being aware that this is what they are doing.
When a crisis develops, it is likely to arise because of your immature or unaware Aries behavior. Persisting in this behavior, rather than learning the necessary lessons related to power, responsible action or emotional/motivational awareness, is likely to have unfortunate consequences. In your egotism and naiveté, you may remain oblivious to these consequences but they will exist nonetheless. The consequences of your failure to come to terms with how your actions are related to power may be either that you continue to exercise power through your actions irresponsibly or that you continue to be manipulated by others with power (or by your own subconscious drives and motivations). If, on the other hand, you are able to learn your Scorpionic lessons and successfully integrate the positive Scorpio qualities of deep insight into your desires, motivations and actions; self-control; and the responsible use of power, you would enter a more mature phase of the development of your Aries potential. You are likely to be more empowered and more true to yourself, as your actions become expressions of your deepest desires. When interacting with others, particularly those with strong Scorpio energy, you should be more able to hold your own and act on your own desires while, at the same time, respecting the desires and emotions of the other party.
The Scorpio-Aries relationship, on the other hand, is suggestive of the sixth house wing of the quincunx, which is associated with self-refinement and the drive for perfection. The Scorpio-Aries combination suggests that the Scorpio energy may have spiraled into an emotional black hole and become too self-absorbed. Your world can become all about the intensity of your emotions and actions go on without any emotional guidance. When this energy is interpersonal, the Scorpio actor may frequently wonder why Aries is acting that way, oblivious or inconsiderate to your emotional needs (including the needs for emotional security, for feeling empowered, or for feeling that you are in control). You may keenly feel the contrast between Aries' readiness to act and your own inability to act, tied up in emotional turmoil as you are. Or, you may see the Aries actor as hopelessly naive, particularly when it comes to power relationships, which may prompt you either to ignore him/her or to seek to control or manipulate him/her.
More frequently than not, the issues that you have with your Aries container are rooted in the turbidity of your own emotions. What is likely called for in order to bring clarity to these emotions and to raise the Scorpio energy to a purer and more refined level is action. The first step toward positive action would be to clarify your desires and then to orient your actions to achieve the objective of those desires. At the highest level, this clarification will come from the deepest connection to your inner Source, the True Source of Power.
The Scorpio-Aries critical situation may be triggered by a call to action that you cannot ignore or by the demand coming from your Aries container to stop whirling around in your emotions and fears, take real control of yourself stop reacting so much and take direct action. Or, it may be triggered by your excessive reaction to the directness, spontaneity and assertiveness of your Aries container. It may also be triggered when your Aries container can no more stand your Scorpionic intensity, secrecy, surreptitiousness or obsession with power. As with the Aries-Scorpio critical dynamic, if you rise to the occasion and integrate these Aries qualities, activating them within a Scorpio context, you can resolve the crisis.
However, if you fail to integrate the Aries energy and act to resolve the crisis, you will only have to face it again at some other time, in some other way. The consequences of such failure can be increasing isolation (through withdrawal from the world of action), emotional turmoil, secrecy and bitterness. Rather than grow in selfhood, you may simply grow more emotionally confounded, more fearful and more obsessive. Rather than refining your Scorpio qualities, you remain in subject to their darker and grosser manifestations.
It may now be the time to view the implications of Mars' classical rulership over both signs. Using this lens, both Aries and Scorpio are associated with the faculty to act. However, they take action in very different ways, ways which seem so different as to be disconnected from each other. For Aries, action is direct and the desire that provokes action is immediate. For Scorpio, action is indirect and the motivating desire is deeply held and imbued with emotional content. This is the essential expression of Cardinal Fire (direct, assertive, spontaneous, active) and Fixed Water (deep, acting underground, powerful and emotive). The two energies can also be understood through their archetypes. This is the Warrior for Aries and this archetype may be best expressed in the images of Achilles and Hector of Troy, the epitome of warrior heroes from the Age of Aries. For Scorpio, the relevant archetype may be identified as the Court Intriguer, the Power Behind the Throne or, in modern terms, the Politician (I'm reminded of the Cream song, Politician, which combines [lower] Scorpionic images of darkness [the big black car], power and sex). It is frequently difficult for containers embodying these two energies to understand each other, particularly in terms of their modes of action. The challenge represented by the Aries-Scorpio combination is for them to do just that and, also, to learn from each other, take each other's strengths and weaknesses into consideration, and healthily integrate each other's energies.
The transcendent dimension of the Aries-Scorpio relationship lies in resolving the critical situation in such a way that you move closer and closer to devotion working toward Union with the Beloved. The essence of Aries-Scorpio devotion is action undertaken to ultimately lose your own identity and merge the Beloved within. Real devotion is not an emotion (although it may be motivated by the deepest of emotions, the intense yearning for Union and a Return to the Source of All Power) but action. Movement toward the Beloved does not happen without self-will being transformed to the will to live within the Divine Will. This ultimate act of surrender is not passive but active. This surrender to the Beloved, this relinquishing of all power held by the ego, is actually the most powerful act and one that unites us with that Supreme Power.
The purging of all lower tendencies, combined with right-desire and right-action, are the essential ingredients if the critical dynamic of the inherent Aries-Scorpio quincunx is to be resolved in a positive manner. These lower tendencies include the desire to maintain control (a reaction to the fear of losing control). Ultimately, all desires for anything but Union with the Divine Beloved need to be eliminated. Then, only, can action become one-pointedly directed toward that goal.
Without at least moving in this direction, the risk of failure in the critical situation is high. Aries and Scorpio would then continue to be disconnected and pursuing their separate ways. Aries, driven by ego, cannot subordinate its own desires and willfulness in order to accept the deep level of guidance from Scorpio needed to adhere to the path of right-action. Scorpio, self-absorbed in his/her intense emotional world, obsessed with power and control and the fear of losing them, does not perceive the need to act forthrightly in order to pursue his/her goals and use his/her power for the good of others.
Resolving the critical situation and achieving mutual integration will generally require that each party places themselves at risk and expose his/her vulnerabilities. Often, courageous action is required, combined with keen insight and will. Each party must be willing to subordinate his/her own interests and propensities. If the risk is taken and if the parties act skillfully and appropriately, the critical situation may be resolved and the Aries-Scorpio energies integrated and advanced to the next developmental level.
Of course, all of the Aries-Scorpio dynamics can play out internally, as well as between two people. The Aries-Scorpio energy will also be modulated by the planets involved, whether in your own chart or someone else’s. The depositorships of Mars and Pluto may also come into play. Gargatholil
During the recent and on-going Uranus square Pluto
configuration, anyone with Uranus or Pluto aspecting a natal
planet--particularly an inner planet or key point and
particularly by conjunction, square or opposition--may have
experienced some rough waters. Even those who have
done considerable inner work are not immune to the
psychological forces unleashed in synchronicity with this
Uranus-Pluto transit. Even when we intellectually know
that our karmas are destined and that the world is illusion,
under the pressure and stress brought on by these forces,
one may still find oneself asking, "why is this happening to
me?" and "how do I handle this energy that feels like one
body blow after another?"
At these times, we may need to be reminded that events--both mundane and psychological--associated with the Uranus-Pluto energies are generally signals from the unconscious for us to pay attention to areas of our lives/psyches that need to be transformed. [See "The Current Uranus and Pluto Square" at Aries-Gemini in Archives.] A great mystic once said, "Please remember that this world is a furnace through the fires of which the soul is purified." Until we have reached that state, which very few attain, of being permanently and eternally merged with the Divine, we will always have inner work to do.
So, the first task is to decode the signal from the unconscious. If Uranus is the planet most closely aspecting your natal planet, your issue is likely to be one of attachment. Attachment enslaves you to that to which you are attached. The Uranian energy is one of liberation and freedom. Whatever the status quo which the Uranus transit is signaling you to leave, you would not be stuck there if you were not attached to it. And, leaving it would not be painful unless the attachment was deep. You may look to the planet(s) involved, as well as to the house of both the planet aspected and of Uranus for clues to from what it is you need to detach. Look to Pluto for the source of the deep emotional energy that is holding you to your attachment. It is, in large part, because of your deep emotional investment in that to which/to whom you are attached that makes it so difficult for you to become detached from what the Universe/your unconscious is pulling you away. As the unconscious pull to detach becomes stronger and more insistent, the urge and struggle for control over the object of attachment or over the situation that is forcing you to detach is only likely to become stronger if the pull to detach is resisted. As the tension and conflict between these two forces intensifies, so will your emotional pain unless, of course, you find some way to block, deaden or distract yourself from that pain. Meanwhile, the Uranian energy that wants to liberate you from your attachment(s) is only likely to continue to shake your world.
Having identified the issue(s) that Uranus-Pluto symbolizes, the task at hand, then, is to work consciously to free yourself from the attachment(s) that the Universe has determined you must give up. Of course, you may ignore this task, suffer through the remainder of the Uranus-Pluto transit and bear the consequences of remaining stuck in your attachment(s). Better, of course, to address the issues and try to resolve them. This may (or may not) require you to identify the source of your emotional attachment and consciously realize that it is no longer useful or valuable to retain those emotions. Perhaps those emotions are rooted in pain and fear, especially of losing control. Those roots may need to be addressed.
It is also likely that you may need to engage in a conscious process of letting go your attachment. An aid to this letting go may be to focus on the freedom that letting this attachment go will give to you (and, if a person is the object of attachment, to that person, as well). It may also be valuable to realize the appropriateness of you letting go of this attachment at this time. It may be that you need to accept that the person or situation to which you are attached does not need you to be in control. Freeing the object of your attachment may be difficult but, if it is seen as an act of love, you may receive consolation from your own Higher Self that you have made this loving choice.
You may, of course, be conscious of and welcome the change that is coinciding with the Uranus transit but find that there are obstacles that are blocking the change from taking effect or are firmly resisting the Uranian transformation that you desire. These obstacles may be within you in the form of fears (particularly of losing control or of being exposed) or other emotional barriers. They may also be external in the form of powerful people or interests who are trying to preserve the status quo in order to maintain their own power or who are trying to exercise personal control over you. Internal obstacles, of course, are easily identifiable as undealt with forces and complexes within your own subconscious that are holding you back. You generally need to bring these to the surface so that their unreality can be exposed to the light of consciousness.
External obstacles are usually more difficult for people to identify for what they really are--projections of your own subconscious fears and desires. It will generally be necessary for you to identify the inner obstacles that these outer obstacles represent and deal with those energies. You can also realize that no one or no system has power over you unless you allow this. Probably the most frequent way in which someone allows themselves to be controlled by another is that they are attached to that person or system and/or to the rewards (or fear of punishment) associated with the person or system. Freeing yourself of that attachment can go a long way to reducing the power that is held over you. Remember, that even if the power blocking change seems to be directing its controlling energy impersonally, it is your attachment to the results that you wish to happen that is the issue.
Also, keep in mind that it is an internal freedom and change in which you are being called upon to engage. Even after freeing yourself from your attachments connected with the obstacle, the obstacle may still persist in an external form. Reactionary forces will still be operating in the world and that megalomaniac may still be your boss. Even though these obstacles may be projections of your subconscious, the subconscious is more deeply rooted than you can imagine. These forces are likely set in motion by karmas that may have been produced lifetimes ago and they must be gone through. However, you can go through them in bondage or you can go through them freely with their effect just touching you lightly.
Of course, it is always a good thing to be receptive to those flashes of intuition that can come to you from the Higher Mind and from the more elevated levels of your own consciousness. Making Uranus your friend in this way can point you in fruitful directions for turning difficult times into opportunities for personal and spiritual growth. And, don't forget to make Pluto your friend, as well. Do not be afraid to shine the light of awareness into the dark places of your psyche. For, that boogieman in the closet might just turn out to be nothing but a shadow and disappear when the lights are turned on. The forces associated with Pluto generate their own insights, these coming from your source-depths rather than from "above." Be receptive to these insights and uncoverings as well and you may be shown avenues leading toward transformation. Both Pluto and Uranus symbolize transformative energies at their highest manifestations so reach through the darkness and transform!
Part Two - The Plutonian Side
When it is Pluto that is the
strongest aspector to your planets during this time of
Uranus-Pluto square, the issues that you are facing are
likely to be associated, in one way or another, with power
and control. Change, the energy symbolized by Uranus,
is likely to be challenging to your feeling of being in
control, of having power over your life (or over others) or
to your emotional equilibrium (which may be being disrupted
by your fear of losing control, power or your seemingly
in-control life as you formerly knew it). You may feel
that sudden changes in your life have left you powerless or
that things have suddenly and inexplicably spun out of
control. The Uranian challenges you are facing may
even have taken the form of greater avenues of freedom that
have opened up to you--avenues of freedom that, perhaps, you
do not necessarily want or that you may feel ambivalent
toward because along with greater freedom comes the risk of
becoming exposed, of having your old, comfortable situation
ripped away from you or of losing old patterns that allowed
you to control your world (or at least feel that you were in
One dynamic associated with this transit may be that as you are called to greater freedom and detachment (Uranus), your instinct is to cling more tightly to your present (or past, if inevitable change has already occurred) situation, trying desperately to remain in control. Like a swimmer caught by a rip tide, the more you fight change and the forces symbolized by Uranus, the deeper you are likely to be dragged down into Plutonian turmoil. Like the swimmer, the secret to surviving this transit is to let go and surrender to the undertow, having faith that the Ocean of Existence will pop you up safely in calmer waters. This, of course, is apt to be all counter-intuitive and counter-emotional for you and will probably demand a huge leap of faith on your part. It is not easy to surrender to the Plutonian forces in your subconscious for this may mean squarely facing (and freeing yourself from) your shadow content. It may mean letting go of your support systems instead of grabbing onto them. It may mean recognizing that old patterns and attachments are no longer relevant and have turned destructive. Like a thrashing companion swimmer who will only pull you down, these attachments and your attempts to hold onto them will only drown you in a sea of pain and sorrow.
The Uranus-Pluto square may also express itself in a feeling that you can only move toward greater freedom and personal liberation at the cost of the power you have accumulated and through which you "control" your life and your surroundings. This may be an unacceptable trade off for you but Uranus will not relent in its challenge to your Plutonian constructs. Again, your response to these Uranian challenges may very well be to even more fiercely try to exert your power and control. It is likely, though, that levers of power and control that formerly worked well for you are, suddenly, no longer functioning. When this occurs, your emotional response may be one of panic or a feeling of sudden dis-empowerment. You may find yourself being caught up in fear that you are now at the mercy of others and their power agendas, unable any longer to defend and protect yourself. That can send you into a paranoid spiral, resulting in you trusting no one, especially those whom you perceive as wanting to change your world.
The only real solution to the challenge that the Uranian energy is imposing on you may very well be to let go of your impulse to hold on and control and embrace the Uranian freedom that is being offered to you. This is likely to require you to realize certain perennial Truths born of those flashes of insight from the Higher Mind (or, perhaps, you are already well aware of those Truths but need to shift your perspective to be guided by them). Realization implies not only an intellectual acknowledgement but an incorporation of these Truths into your attitude toward your current situation (to which the old adage, “easier said than done” is particularly relevant considering that we are here facing a powerful square). It is also possible that before you can truly integrate the Uranian vision, you must confront your Plutonian depths and allow the sharp Uranian light to shine into those depths to expose and cleanse them—hard Plutonian inner work.
It may be useful to explore the relationship between power and attachment. In a real sense, attachment is about having power over and attempting to control that to which we are attached. For, somewhere in our subconscious, we know that we can never really possess those people, situations or things to which we are attached. Our ego-mind, of course, will always try to protect itself from this knowledge so that we can continue to function in the illusion of a separate existence. Secretly knowing that the objects of our attachment are not really ours, under the illusion of ego, we nevertheless are driven to control and possess them. The compulsion to have power over the objects of attachment is a reaction to our well-grounded subconscious fear that we will ultimately be separated from them. Of course, if we were bathed in the Truth of essential Oneness, we would not have this fear for we would truly realize that there never is any separation.
As with any transit, of course, the manner in which you experience the Uranus-Pluto square will be colored by the planets which are being aspected, their house placements, and the role of Uranus and Pluto in your natal chart.
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