Uranus in Aries: Radical Reinvention


When life boxes us in, gradually over many years or rapid-fire all at once, our choices essentially boil down to two main thematic options.

We can (1) passively lament the undeniable ending to certain cherished modes of being, nostalgically yearning for yesteryear, trying our best to 'put things back the way they were' (while quietly knowing there's no going back)…

… or (2) courageously hit the newly-shifted ground running, with fights for both survival and self-satisfaction burning hot in our bellies, and do whatever it takes to reinvent ourselves, making up the rules to this never-before-played game as we go along.

With this latter option, the challenges are obvious: We can't anticipate the possible stumbling-blocks until we hit 'em. We'll have to solve any problems on the fly, only once we get there, and must put blind faith in our impromptu inventiveness to rescue us from any future bind. And we won't know whether we're 'doing it right' until some time later. Even then, our main determining factor of success will be whether we feel uplifted and energized, or disempowered and down-in-the-dumps.

Of course, on the flipside, we can't exactly do anything 'wrong' either. A greatly liberating benefit to innovating is the complete lack of preexisting restrictions; no drag of historical tradition. The endlessly expansive blank canvas begins life with a gaping absence of expectation, the only limits our imagination and our audacity. Yes, we mustn't forget audacity. Without it, we merely daydream. Embracing it, we dare to give the dream a real shot.

Uranus's movement into Aries (which occurred last Thu May 27) carries a bold-and-ballsy planetary endorsement of this riskier reinvention option. Uranus is a force that inspires our audacious thrusts to do things differently—to break free from confining circumstances, to declare our unmistakable independence, to shirk convention and flaunt our uniqueness, or to otherwise turn life on its ear. And Aries, the fiery first-sign of the zodiac wheel, is an influence that smacks of pioneering fresh-starts, spontaneous advances and brave explorations of uncharted territories, taking full advantage of each present moment here and now (rather than, say, waffling in internal debate over painful pasts or potential futures).

Together, Uranus and Aries hop up our drive to leap before looking… which could be seen as a drawback (if we wish to falsely reassure ourselves that we're ever truly prepared for what's next) or as a strategy that encourages risk-taking (since there's nothing but an empty expanse of possibility to 'look at' anyway, so why bother projecting our fears onto it by trying to 'see'?). After all, if we don't leap our asses out of here, the walls will continue closing in, fueling our claustrophobic discontent.

Uranus in Aries, then, trumpets a call to revolutionize how we advance through life, prioritizing personal freedom of movement (at all costs!) over orthodoxy-abiding patience for waiting in line, asking permission and/or respecting proper protocols. Not getting results through ordinary channels? Bust through their gates, or defiantly climb over them. Facing continual rejection? Stop waiting for others' approval, and carve out your own path to the winning ticket. Tired of certain individuals weighing you down or battling against you for dominance? Issue the most relevant form of 'fuck off!' and try not to let the door hit 'em as you zoom ahead.

If this whole shit-or-get-off-the-pot attitude freaks the hell out of you, you're not alone. The terror of kissing a ferocious farewell to people, situations or locations that represent some vein of stability or sustenance (whether real or merely perceived) is real… and this accelerating moment of drastic discontinuity won't feel too comfortable to the slow-and-steady, risk-averse, strategic-planning types among us. No amount of reasoning, internal or through supportive friends, will ease the shock. This is a test of bravery and instinct. A return to calmer, safer days is still quite a distance ahead. Yet, for those who thrive on edge-of-your-seat dynamism, blindly following curiosities into potential goldmines, in eager pursuit of quantum-leap growth… well, there'll soon be lots of fresh input to sink your teeth into.

Uranus changing signs is always big astrological news, since it takes approximately seven-to-eight years to move through a single zodiac sign. Uranus has been in Pisces since 2003, stirring up our awareness of 'watery' issues, the underlying interconnectedness linking our seemingly separate human existences together into one whole, all of us bleeding when one is wounded. Following up Uranus's travels through Aquarius (1995-2003), which yielded massive technological progress in the shape of a world wide web connecting us across Internet wires, Uranus in Pisces showed us the more emotional/spiritual ripples emanating outward from the invention of this web: how quickly and widely the fallout of isolated events spreads, culturally and politically, such that it's become increasingly hard to tune out the collective effects of any injustice or suffering. Click the link, there it is, and you feel it.

Pisces also ruling both the oceans that connect our lands and the fossil-fuel reserves that reside beneath them, it's no surprise the Uranus-in-Pisces era kicked off with the US's entry into Middle East wars (where the real issue has always been oil)… and is now drawing to a close with the worst oil spill in US history threatening to wreak unprecedented havoc not only on our shores, but all around the globe. We are interconnected, through our global dependence on oil (for if we deserve this affluent petroleum-based lifestyle, doesn't everybody else?) and across the ocean's currents that carry detrimental pollutant consequences of this addiction to still-undetermined far-off corners of the planet. And along this way, with Uranus in Pisces, the dual aqueous tragedies of Hurricane Katrina and the Indian Ocean tsunami left a humbling imprint on our collective memory.

Uranus's current sign-shift is even more dramatic for it marks the completion of one more cycle through the entire zodiac wheel… and another arrival to the Aries Point, resounding beginning-spot to another new cycle and a quick-fire infusion of Aries immediacy, in sharp contrast to the diffuseness of Pisces. Just like with the horrendous Gulf of Mexico disaster, many areas of our own lives require immediate action. Waiting merely worsens the problems.

The last transit of Uranus through Aries (1927-1935) coincided with the Great Depression, an exceptional economic downturn like no other (until now?), and the efforts to confront its effect with results of varying success—FDR's New Deal on the one hand, the rise of Hitler and Nazism on the other. How fitting, then, we face a similar economic situation… along with similar questions about the role of government vs. Wall Street-sponsored 'free enterprise', the benefits and drawbacks of nationalism in an increasingly singular world, and the potential scapegoating of individual outsider-groups in the name of collective 'security' (see also: Arizona).

Uranus in Aries bears the potential to both (1) build upon the tide-turning initiatives of certain brave individuals who reflect a 'sleeves-rolled-up' spirit to positive reinvent the world (hopefully, for instance, in weaning us off oil and other industrial-greed addictions) and (2) foment an increase in militaristic and/or brute-force efforts to impose brave new 'innovation' by the tried-and-true conquer and destroy. Aries, we must remember, is not a vision-sustaining, long-view-perspective strategist. It does whatever it feels in the moment. It lights fires, gets things going… then figures out the next steps only once it needs to. We'll never know in advance, therefore, the fullest ramifications of what we set out to do until after the first round of consequences start revealing themselves. But by then, perhaps, the momentum's already building on itself, snowball-style.

Without a doubt, some of our best efforts prove to be as destructive as they are progressive. At the same time, the inadvertent destruction necessarily leads us to rebuild something atop the shrapnel from Pandora's opened box. From friction comes the energy we require for creation. From oncoming attack, we instantly muster the courage to fight for ourselves. Through inertly hiding our heads in the sand and praying for familiar respite, however, we are likeliest to fail. In this strange new land of both scary monsters and glorious hidden treasures, it's always better to do something—anything!—than nothing at all.

Uranus will be in Aries through 2018, with a brief retrograde back into Pisces from August 2010 to March 2011. And please remember: Uranus in Aries does not behave as if in a vacuum. He's presently conjoining Jupiter, opposing Saturn, and squaring Pluto. There's more going on than any single summarizing article can contain. Refamiliarize yourself with the broader context here.