Full Moon in Aries

Wave Weave 1 by Sarah Wertzberger

Full Moon in Aries

The polarity between Aries and Libra centers around change of the most primordial sort. In the northern hemisphere the entrance of the Sun into Aries brings the propulsive eruption of Spring from the darkness of Winter, its entrance into Libra the turn from the light and enlivening heat of Summer into the decomposition and reseeding of Fall. While the reverse is true in the southern hemisphere, the axis of Aries and Libra still holds the tension of shifting dynamics ready to give birth to new storylines, motion arising out of stasis, revelation from incubation, breaking through out of breaking down, and vice versa. The Full Moon in Aries on October 20 will be especially catalytic and volatile, as the brilliant Aries Moon will form an opposition with Mars in Libra and a square aspect with Pluto in Capricorn. Yet as the Aries Moon will also pass through a harmonizing sextile aspect with Jupiter in Aquarius as it waxes into fullness, there can be new opportunities for expansive growth to extract from whatever chthonic, internal process of change you have been engaging.

The Full Moon is in the fiery home of Mars and the exaltation of the Sun, forming an opposition with both the Sun and Mars. Mars in Libra is still within his invisible, underworld phase of being at the beginning of a new solar cycle which began on October 7 when Mars was reanimated by the Sun a day after the New Moon in Libra on October 6. The present lunar cycle is all about Mars, as the Moon began her cycle conjoining Mars and will reach peak illumination in opposition with Mars. While new visions and desires related to Mars may be taking root, we are still in the midst of gestating and coming to terms with whatever the new cycle of Mars may propel us toward. Mars is known for being off balance and off kilter, creating strife and separation within relationships in ways that pull you back toward a sense of your own autonomy outside of the dynamic. The opposition aspect in astrology has long been known as having the nature of Saturn, and with Mars occupying the sign opposite its domicile of Aries while forming an opposition with the Aries Full Moon, there will be a need to hold the tension of whatever relational questions or conflicts you may be facing, slowly but surely coming into deeper awareness of the underlying dynamics at play.

Mars also instills courage, the kind of courage necessary to face the unknown and cross thresholds of radical change. In the airy sign of Libra, however, there can be increased levels of mental anxiety regarding change and associated frustrations. As a result it will be helpful to find ways to release energy, calm nerves, and utilize available outlets of creative expression in the days surrounding the Aries Full Moon. Due to Mars and the Aries Full Moon both forming catalyzing square aspects with Pluto in Capricorn, the lunation will coincide with a deep stirring of unconscious desires and memories that may become activated within present relational dynamics. While the hard aspects between Mars and the Aries Full Moon with Pluto may dredge up difficult feelings, it can also provide important illumination regarding your relational patterns and attractors presently operating within your relationships.

Moreover, the Full Moon in the element of fire can help distinguish and separate insight that has accumulated from the recent retrograde phase of Mercury, as Mercury will have stationed direct two days before the Aries Full Moon. With the presence of Mercury saturating the astrological atmosphere, we can draw upon the gifts of Hermes for calibrating opposites, finding the threads that connect disparate elements, and weaving together meaning from whatever processes have been undergoing decomposition and transmutation over the course of the Mercury retrograde period that began on September 26 when Mercury stationed retrograde. In fact the Full Moon at 27°26’ Aries is close to an exact opposition with the degree of 25°28’ Libra where Mercury originally stationed retrograde on September 26.

Ikat Wave by Sarah Wertzberger

Mars in Libra rules the Full Moon and is separating from a flowing trine aspect with Jupiter in Aquarius while applying toward an intensifying square aspect with Pluto in Capricorn, similar to how the Aries Moon is separating from both a sextile aspect with Jupiter and a square aspect with Pluto. While Jupiter is making the more harmonious aspect with Mars due to them both occupying air signs, Jupiter has the most intensified presence due to having stationed direct on October 17 a few days before the lunation. As a result, the new desires that Mars is incubating and the future quests he is beginning to develop are being injected with the enlivening vision of Jupiter which can instill hope for breaking free from past limitations and barriers to growth. Yet the simultaneous square aspect between Mars and Pluto may necessitate confronting deeply held internal blocks to becoming more fully actualized creatively. Mars will continue to harbor in darkness during the rest of the present lunar cycle, and so when possible it will be better to wait, contemplate, and continue to develop plans as you continue to deepen your relationship with whatever new pursuits, goals, and desires emerge as Mars gets closer to emerging again in visibility next month. It’s a good time to gather courage away from the glare of the public eye, as you continue to hone and develop plans with daily work and practice.

In addition to Jupiter having an intensified presence due to stationing direct a few days before the Aries Full Moon, Mercury will be embodying an extremely potent presence due to not only stationing direct on October 18, but also having recently risen again into visibility in his Morning Star phase. It will be wise to pay special attention to dreams, symbols, signs, and synchronicities in the days surrounding the Arie Full Moon, listening closely to whatever meaningful messages Mercury will be delivering. Mercury is in range of a flowing trine aspect with Saturn in Aquarius, and so with Saturn, Jupiter, and Mercury all recently having stationed direct, Mercury can help with coalescing insight and gaining greater clarity for the path opening up ahead and the next steps to take.

As the Moon begins to wane within its present cycle, Mercury will be generating forward momentum and will reach maximum elongation as a Morning Star on October 25, the point of its synodic cycle in which he begins to increase in speed and can more easily set in motion whatever changes and new ideas were gathered and generated during his previous retrograde cycle. Before the Scorpio New Moon on November 4, Mercury will completes his third and final trine aspect with Jupiter on October 31, followed by completing his third and final square aspect with Pluto in Capricorn on November 2, the same day that he also will move beyond the degree of the zodiac where he previously stationed retrograde on September 26. Mercury formed his first trine with Jupiter on September 20 and his second on October 3, so you may trace the development of innovative ideas and opportunities for growth across these dates until now. In contrast, Mercury formed his first square aspect with Pluto on September 22 followed by his second square aspect on October 1, and so the process stretching across these dates until now may have been bringing deepening awareness of how inner relational patterns and issues from your past intersect with the present as well as a sense of how to become more empowered in creating and cultivating the work, relationships, and life you desire to experience.

Heat Weave by Sarah Wertzberger

The Sun and Mars are both in the airy home of Venus, and so it is significant that Venus is not only traversing the fiery sign of Sagittarius, but is also out of bounds in declination. Venus will not only be out of bounds in southern declination during the Aries Full Moon but will be continuing to descend even further out of bounds during the waning half of the present lunar cycle into extreme declination for Venus. With Venus out of bounds in southern declination, within the fiery and visionary sign of Sagittarius, the leaps of desire for greater freedom of expression, creativity, and desire may be felt more internally within private places at times.

As Venus approaches a square aspect with Neptune she will complete on October 26 at 20°45’ of Sagittarius and Pisces, there will be great potential for imaginative use of creativity and artistry that can break new ground of expression and form. Yet the boundlessness of Neptune combined with the free spiritedness of Venus out of bounds in Sagittarius also means there will be greater potential than normal for becoming swept up into exciting desires that ultimately prove to be illusory or less than the ideal imagined. Whether within internal or external realms of relationship, however, Venus out of bounds will incite desires for breaking free from past restrictions or barriers. While in some cases there may be a need to take a breath, ground, and contemplate options before rushing heedlessly ahead in new directions, positively Venus out of bounds in Sagittarius can stoke movement and creative expression in places we have felt stagnated or stuck.

4 of Wands by Pamela Colman Smith

Aries 3 Decan

The Full Moon will illuminate the third decan of Aries associated with the Four of Wands card illustrated above by Pamela Colman Smith. It’s not clear who the figures in the center of the image are, if they are performers being celebrated or celebrants participating in communal festivities. What is clear is the lovingly decorated garland filled with vivacious blossoms and the combined symbolism of a bridge and large castle in the background: the figures are in a centering and protective place from which to express their creativity and charisma. T Susan Chang in her book 36 Secrets described the Four of Wands as a “temporary refuge” and “safe haven” similar to Rivendell in the Lord of the Rings trilogy, a moment to take comfort and refuge from whatever ordeals you have been enduring. Although Aries is the domicile of contentious and combative Mars, the third decan of Aries is ruled by Venus and Jupiter, the two traditional planets most associated with fertile growth, sources of abundant pleasure, and creative vision. 

While Venus is not naturally comfortable in Aries, she is capable of manifesting success and achievement in the third face of Aries despite it being an environment suited for the fiery assertiveness of Mars and the radiant grandeur of the Sun. Austin Coppock in his book 36 Faces ascribed the image of “The Burning Rose” to the third face of Aries, attributing to it “the power of art to overcome hostility,” and “the power of the spirit to unify and seduce, to motivate and to bond those of confluent passions.” Coppock further noted this decan requires “the martial heat of the battlefield,” as it is the battle-ready ferocity of Aries turned toward artistic performance and charismatic presentation that gives this decan its power “to create a commonality of spirit even in the most hostile conditions.” Yet Coppock also pointed out that the bonds formed within this face require its burning intensity to endure, whereas less intense passions are needed within longterm relationships. Thus it’s a face of “peak experiences” and “inspiring unions amidst life’s greatest struggles,” a place where “bonds are forged and spirits raised,” a decan which “grants the charisma to motivate and attract.”

Third decan of Aries image from Allegory of March: Triumph of Minerva (1476) by Francesco del Cossa

The image above by Francesco del Cossa of a figure who resides within the third face of Aries encapsulates aspects of numerous images found in ancient text. The trinity of Three Books of Occult PhilosophyPicatrix, and Liber Hermetis all reveal figures dressed in red and holding a staff or sword. This passionate figure is wearing either a golden or wooden bracelet depending on whether you consult Three Books of Occult Philosophy or the Picatrix, but both texts indicate the figure embodies the unrest of not being able to do desired good. The reason for not being able to manifest these good wishes is not stated, but Three Books proclaims there is “talent, tameness, joy, and beauty” to be found. The figure in the Picatrix is an iron worker and so has a medium through which to transfigure frustrated anger into works of vivifying creation.

In contrast, the figure in Liber Hermetis wears a gold crown with glistening emeralds decorating her belly. She is full of magic and her staff has the heads of four serpents facing a polarity of directions. Her garments of dark rose are lined with golden strings and she seems to possess the grace of the figure painted by Francesco del Cossa rather than the fury over constraints described by other texts. The focused countenance in del Cossa’s figure suggests they have an inner knowing of being able to make a targeted impact, as they seem to be summoning an inner force to project through the golden bracelet held delicately with their fingers. Francesco del Cossa placed an arrow in the other hand, evoking the mythic Eros or Cupid.

Eros is in fact resonant, as the Hellenistic text 36 Airs ascribed the figure of Eros to the third face of Aries. Indeed, the capacity of Eros to arouse passions into creations that inspire collective forces lies at the heart of the decan’s meaning. While some spiritual lineages place Eros as a primordial, hermaphroditic deity at the dawn of Creation, later traditions made Eros into the cunning son of Aphrodite who constantly stirred up the troubles brought forth by lust in both mortals and gods with his bow and arrows. Austin Coppock in 36 Faces stated it is more likely that the 36 Airs had the son of Venus in mind with the third face of Aries as “Eros’ escapades make clear that the desire for unification is inflamed by separation, love by war, lust by forbiddance.”

Another version of Eros is found in Plato’s Symposium, where Eros is portrayed as a great daimon and described by Socrates as the child born from the union of the divine forms of Poverty and Resource. To Socrates, Eros is always poor, always in a state of need, but is also always resourceful in being able to gain what it needs. Within the polarity between Poverty and Resource, the daimonic force of Eros weaves together awareness of the wisdom to be found through our earthly desires that lead us to experience Beauty and Love. The opposing extremes of Poverty and Resource giving birth to Eros is further resonant with the meaning Austin Coppock gave to the third decan of Libra where the Sun and Moon will form an opposition with the Aries Full Moon. Indeed, Coppock described the third decan of Libra as facilitating a process of finding the center within wildly oscillating extremes, inhabiting “the eye of the storm, calm and clear as the chaos of desire and fear whirl all about.” With the Full Moon in the third face of Aries, may the enlivening passion of Eros create the movement needed to flow with the changes circulating around you, finding ways to center within the integrity of your purpose and values while remaining open to flexibly adjusting plans as needed.

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References

Chang, T. Susan. (2021). 36 Secrets: A Decanic Journey through the Minor Arcana of the Tarot. Anima Mundi Press. 

Coppock, Austin. (2014). 36 Faces: the history, astrology, and magic of the decans. Three Hands Press.

 

Aries Full Moon + Uranus

isadora-duncan-at-parthenon-e-steichen

Isadora Duncan at the Parthenon (1920) Edward Steichen

Full Moon in Aries

Her magnificence unfurled from a darkly clouded horizon, the radiant light laid bare in the rising of the Full Moon heralds insight and illumination every month when Luna reaches the peak of her cycle.  Yet the Full Moon in Aries on October 15 or 16 (depending upon your location) will electrify thoughts and feelings beyond the norm as it is united with Uranus and is also a perceptually larger “Super Moon.”  Super Moons were defined by astrologer Richard Nolle as New or Full Moons within 90% of the Moon’s closest orbit to Earth, and besides being simply bigger in the sky they have also been found to impact tides more dramatically.  Events speed up in alignment with this dramatic lunation, and since Uranus awakens with a jolt, there will be no hiding from whatever is unleashed.  Any aspect of our life in which we have been asleep, unmindful, or in denial will receive an accordingly large dose of revelation.  September was full of intense astrological transits dredging up buried material: two potent eclipses intertwined with Mercury retrograde in Virgo, and the final exact square between Saturn and Neptune that had been building over the past year.  There is deep-rooted force from Mars united with Pluto underneath the swift flames of this lunation that brings catharsis and power to face arising challenges with accountability.

The Full Moon aligned with Uranus is a breakthrough marker on our astrological calendar that ushers us into a time period in which Jupiter, Saturn, and Uranus will be in a relationship enabling rapid growth and development.  The end of 2015 and first three quarters of 2016 were dominated by a square between Jupiter and Saturn, a square between Neptune and Saturn, and Uranus in Aries being generally isolated to Jupiter while in a sign based trine with Saturn in Sagittarius.  Jupiter and Saturn are important to always consider in tandem, as Jupiter expands growth within the form and structures dictated by Saturn.  As a result, this past year involved deconstruction and falling apart of old relationships and supports, with mixed results in the attempt to reorient life in a more enlivening and authentic direction.  Uranus is the planet that can explode the boundaries of Saturn in order to facilitate the vision of Jupiter moving beyond previous limitations.  As Jupiter in Libra forms a sextile to Saturn in Sagittarius with reception, and Saturn begins to slowly move toward an exact trine with Uranus that will come at the end of 2016, the containment of Saturn is energized with mutable activation opening portals to perception of how to manifest emboldened vision free of past limitations.

Those who have strong aspects of Uranus to planets in their birth chart are familiar with the necessity of working with the nonlinear field of Uranus that has commonly been likened to the dispersion of energy released from a strike of lightning in a thunderstorm.   This doesn’t necessarily make this lunation easier for those who live everyday with a hard aspect between Uranus and their Moon, Mercury or Venus, but it does mean that whatever coping skills you have developed in relation to dealing with Uranus strikes will be helpful.  Uranus can throw one off kilter into rebellious, freedom seeking behavior that is not in our best interest or the highest good, and so with Uranus it is beneficial to find outlets of release to actively engage with and transmit its primal vibrations.  For example, pouring energy into a collective cause/movement you feel passionate about, discharging tension through vigorous exercise or balancing movement, focusing one’s energy into development of a project, creation of art or music, or cultivation of personal writing are some ways to let Uranus move through you into something productive you care about.

The Full Moon is also united with the mysterious dwarf planet Eris which befitting its moniker creates discord in astrology as not only did its discovery lead to the demotion of Pluto from its planetary status, but many astrologers are in disagreement over whether or not the meaning of Eris can be, or even should be, understood in astrology at this stage.  Since Uranus has been co-present with Eris in Aries for years, and now is in almost exact conjunction, the one thing that is clear is that whatever meaning Eris has is merged with the meaning of Uranus in this period.   One thing we do know is that the eccentric orbit of Eris goes beyond Pluto and at a point crosses in between the space separating Pluto and Neptune, approaching the orbit of Neptune before once again moving beyond the orbit of Pluto.  It’s orbit is incredibly inclined compared to the other planets we use in astrology, so much so that it passes through only a few of the traditional zodiac constellations (it is now passing through Cetus the sea monster).  In my own work in looking into Eris, similar to other astrologers I have noticed those with exact aspects of Eris in their chart often disrupting the consensus of a familial or mainstream cultural context, becoming individuals driven to break out of old paradigms that have dominated belief systems.  We could view Eris aligned with Uranus and the Full Moon as reflecting a tidal wave of pattern breaking force.

graves_serpent_copy

Serpent and Moon (1937) Morris Graves

Mars in its exaltation of Capricorn rules the Full Moon while applying closely to a conjunction with Pluto.  This is the close of the cycle between Mars and Pluto that began on 10 November 2014, and in the distillation of its building intensity our most compelling desires rise to surface awareness.  We can simultaneously feel ambitious while also sensing acutely the power dynamics surrounding us and anywhere we have been losing our self-authority in relation to another.  The blowout quality of this Aries Full Moon requires taking the responsibility to be assertive in pursuit of desires while being fully accountable for our behavior in the process of developing needed structures and relationships for support.  The most fruitful way to navigate will be through cultivating mutual respect and cooperation in relationship with whomever we feel a healthy draw to engage with.  The relationships in which we are out of balance in toxic or unhealthy ways will become obvious and feel intolerable to continue giving energy to.  Mars in Capricorn facilitates being cool and resolute enough to sever ties where needed, while also being receptive and energized to collaborate with those of shared resonance and purpose.

The past lunation cycle has re-connected the Pluto Uranus square that dominated the astrological climate from 2011 – 2015, as during the waxing of the Moon the Sun in Libra passed through a square with Pluto into an opposition with Uranus in the culmination of the Aries Full Moon.  While Uranus can be liberating, the unconscious realm activated by Uranus can lead us into scenes in which we must face choices mirroring past repetitive patterns. The liberating potential Uranus brings is through actively breaking free of our old mindset to make a radically empowering choice.  Issues that have held us back in one way or another in recent years may emerge again in the full light of the Moon, creating opportunities for new responses and wholistic understanding.

sonia-delaunay-2

Syncopated Rhythm, so-called The Black Snake (1967) Sonia Delaunay

Mercury in Libra is barely beginning to separate from a square to Pluto in Capricorn at the time of the Full Moon, and is one of the most exact aspects of the lunation.  In the week leading up to the Full Moon, Mercury completed the final of three exact conjunctions it has formed with Jupiter since the period of Mercury going retrograde in Virgo in September, an unusual amount of unions between Mercury and Jupiter to experience.  Mercury then moved into a square with Mars before entering its square with Pluto at the peak of this potent lunar cycle.  Mercury as a result is at the “crisis in consciousness” point of the last quarter square in relation to both Mars and Pluto as it begins a new cycle with Jupiter. Our Mercurial perception is shedding and emptying itself from old beliefs and conditioning we are not aligned with.  In the space opened up there is vital re-visioning available that will guide us toward relationships and experiences more essentially resonant.

Collective events have featured ugly discourse recently, as well as continued important exposure of individuals facing oppression within the power dynamics of society.  The union of Venus, Juno, and Black Moon Lilith in Scorpio in the build up to these intense Mercurial aspects added visceral emotional power to revelations of injustices.  Reflecting upon how we have been wronged by others and how we have wronged others, and any other messages unveiling whatever has been out of balance makes it possible for profound reorientation toward embodying a more receptive presence in relationship.  Dealing with others fixated on bigoted and biased perspectives is also more excruciating under these hard Mercurial aspects, yet the lesson seems to be about how to remain in one’s own integrity while being confronted by perspectives antithetical and offensive to one’s own viewpoint.

Mercury is combust for most of the waning cycle of this Moon cycle, becoming purified under the rays of the Sun until it reaches cazimi at the heart of the Sun on 27 October a few days before the New Moon in Scorpio on 30 October.  The insights gained into our relationship patterns can be used to burn off whatever needs to be released as Mercury heads into a union with the Sun in the week and a half following the Full Moon.

klee-theater-mountain

Paul Klee (1920) Theater-Mountain-Construction

Saturn in Sagittarius continues to be in square to the lunar nodes at the Full Moon, focusing attention on Saturn being in a harmonious sextile with both Mercury and Jupiter in Libra.  While Mercury formed its exact sextile with Saturn during the Moon waxing full this cycle, during the ensuing waning of the Moon the sextile between Saturn and Jupiter will slowly build in strength.  The structural walls of Saturn are now more receptive and open to mutating, and the union of the Full Moon and Uranus in a whole sign trine to Saturn signifies that outdated forms can now be torn down in order to erect edifices that are more attuned to internal shifts of meaning and purpose.  Significantly during the realization of meaning as the Moon begins to wane into its disseminating phase a couple of days after the Full Moon, Venus will enter Sagittarius.  Once Venus enters Sagittarius it will begin to form a mutually receptive sextile with Jupiter in Libra capable of imbibing developing forms with one’s arising sense of pleasure and aesthetics.   Take advantage of this building sextile between Venus and Jupiter from October 18 – 26, 2016.

In addition to her mutually receptive sextile with Jupiter, Venus will also begin to apply to a conjunction with Saturn in Sagittarius in the waning cycle of the Moon.  Venus will form an exact conjunction with Saturn at a Dark Moon in Scorpio at the end of October, and will be at the beginning of a new cycle with Saturn at the New Moon in Scorpio on 30 October.  The shift of Venus from the slowly churning waters of Scorpio into the leaping fires of Sagittarius as a result will mean the galloping pace of Venus in Sagittarius will be somewhat restrained due to the impending encounter with Saturn.  This can be a period of serious commitment to all things Venusian, bringing love and joy to the cold realm of Saturn.  In addition, as Venus forms her mutually receptive sextile with Jupiter and approaches her conjunction with Saturn, her aesthetic senses will be altered by a square to the otherworldly Neptune in Pisces.  These aspects appear to be fantastic to apply to any creative process involving imagination.

4 wands

4 of Wands by Pamela Colman Smith

Aries 3 Decan

The Full Moon falls in the third face of Aries associated with the Four of Wands card illustrated above by Pamela Colman Smith. In the image we find two figures hoisting fragrant flowers in celebration under a garland within a container of four sturdy rods, with the protective structure of a castle in the background.  Venus rules the third face of Aries and possesses dynamic charisma in this fiery decan.  Indeed, Austin Coppock in his book 36 Faces noted that Eros was bound to this decan in the fragmentary Hellenistic text The 36 Airs of the Zodiac.  Coppock ascribed the image of “The Burning Rose” to this face as it holds “the power of the spirit to unify and seduce, to motivate and to bond those of confluent passions” (p. 64). Coppock discerned that we find in the final decan of Aries “the power of art to overcome hostility,” such as the ability of a performer to transcend discord through a heartfelt performance that inspires and arouses the passions of an audience. Yet Coppock also cautioned that while the torrid potency found in the third face of Aries can bring union even in the most difficult circumstances, attention must be given to sustaining the flame of connection with less volatility so that it may last.

Integrating the meaning of the third face of Aries holding the union of the Full Moon with Uranus, there is incredible potency available to performers of all arts to beguile and enchant.  Venus is in the third face of Scorpio, which happens to be another one of the decans of the zodiac ruled by Venus.  This means that while Venus is not in the same face as the Full Moon, Venus nonetheless possesses the dignity of face that enables her to achieve success despite being in the sign opposite her home of Taurus.  As previously mentioned, there is an electrical field found in the light of the Aries Full Moon that can be transmitted into dynamic performance or any creative process.  In the light of the glowing Moon, open awareness to whatever brings inspiration and joy and find ways to share your passion so as to uplift others of resonant accord.

References

Coppock, Austin. (2014). 36 Faces: The History, Astrology and Magic of the Decans. Three Hands Press.