The Aquarius Archetype: Unrestrained Originality
The 12 signs of the zodiac represent the entirety of the energies of the human psyche. Starting with Aries and culminating with Pisces, they describe the archetypal journey through the developmental process. Each of us has a unique mandala that contains all of these energies and so, everyone has the unusual, extraordinary energy of Aquarius somewhere in their psyche. Understanding the essence of this energy provides us with clues about how we think, imagine, set ourselves apart and even how we fit in.
Though the symbol for Aquarius is the water bearer, this is not watery energy! Rather, as we open up the complexity that is Aquarius we enter into the realm of the intellect; fixed in terms of modality and airy in terms of element, Aquarius is partnered with Gemini & Libra by element and Taurus, Leo and Scorpio by mode. Formerly, Aquarius was linked to Saturn but since the discovery of Uranus, it has been linked to that planet. And so, it is the 10th & 11th house of the horoscope where we naturally can locate Aquarius.
Some of the archetypes are The Thinker, The Visionary, The Futurist, The Revolutionary, The Iconoclast, The Community Activist.
All energies can express in both LIGHT and SHADOW. In fact, it is the Shadow that teaches us how to find the Light. If we understand the shadow parts of ourselves, we can create strategies to integrate shadow so that it is more reflective, more light-filled, more externally oriented. It is when we deny or repress our shadow selves that we can actually lose the potential for Light.
The Shadow of Aquarius is fracture, a breaking apart of that which could be whole. If you work with the Tarot, take a look at your Tower card. The seemingly solid structure of the Tower is being shattered by an unexpected force represented in some decks as a lightning bolt. Aquarius can manifest in this way within the psyche, a sudden insight that sweeps you off your feet, a jolt to all that you thought you knew that creates a reversal of fortune. The key is to be willing to consider the message and not kill the messenger! This sense of inside out-ness, upside down-ness is reinforced by a reactive response to whatever is being shaken. Ego always wants to preserve that which it knows, even when that is something that may not be ideal. The known quality is the comfortable one. We can see this play out in real terms when we find ourselves in situations that are less than desirable and yet we are either unable or unwilling to leave those situations because that which is unknown seems more frightening than that which we know. It is for this very reason that evolution is painstaking, slow and often interrupted. The self is blindfolded and walking through an unknown landscape in search of the soul. But this is exactly the key! The soul calls us to seek healing. Healing is based on finding ways to integrate, to create a sense of wholeness. In Shamanism, the skillful shaman travels into the underworld to retrieve pieces of soul that have splintered off. He brings them back to the person who needs the retrieval. This is a beautiful representation of the process that we, the astrologer shamans, can undertake by exploring ourselves via the astrological method. We can dive into the underworld of our personal psyches, face the demons that lurk therein and locate those elements of ourselves, the fractured pieces of our soul, that have been lost because of the traumas that we have endured. And we have all suffered trauma. Trauma is not relative. It is unique to each individual. One person’s trauma does not eclipse any other person’s trauma.
So, in Aquarius, we come face to face with our individual fracture, unearth the traumas that have contributed to that fracture and, most importantly, find the means to heal from those traumas.
This is also the energy of the grand intellect. It is the future that beckons from afar. If you have ever had an inspiration that seemed to have come out of nowhere, the Aquarian part of you was probably involved in some way. Aquarius also calls you to be unique. Individualism is born in Aquarius. Interestingly, the call to individualism ultimately leads us into community, a sense of family based on shared interests born out of that core uniqueness. When we set ourselves apart, think for ourselves, we begin to seek those others who have also set themselves apart and begun to think for themselves. In the final analysis, we are tribal creatures in search of that tribe that is uniquely ours. That is the community part of Aquarius.
If you were born at the end of January and into the first half of February, you are that quirky, relentlessly unique individual who can call herself an Aquarius. Your season is that bridge time between Solstice and Equinox. You know how to build connections between the old and the new, the seed and the stem, the beginning and the middle.
But you don’t have to have a birthday in Jan/Feb to demonstrate Aquarian traits. If you have this energy at any one of your cardinal houses, the ascendant, the IC, the descendant and the MC, you march to the beat of your own internal drummer. If you have an active, heavily aspected Uranus, you know how to think for yourself. You see things in a way that is NOT usual. Strongly Aquarian types probably feel varying degrees of frustration cyclically. When everyone else sees a circle, they see a square. And yes, it is a square, but just try and tell everyone else that! If any one of your personal planets is found in Aquarius, you will approach life in an Aquarian way.
The Moon: Cool, calm and collected; always in control—maybe a tad too much at times; able to navigate emotional dramas with a skill that far surpasses the rest of us. You need to work on your heart chakra and open yourself to the energy of love so that your natural fellow feeling is amplified and strengthened.
Mercury: Innovative, out of the box thinker; able to make connections that the rest of us can never find. You are the genius of the Zodiac. You have to monitor your freewheeling intellect so that the rest of us can catch up to you. Possibly a tad too detached from time to time. Remember to include emotions.
Venus: You can love just about anyone and anything. Distinctions do not bother you. In fact, they tantalize you. The bigger the difference, the better for you. You love approaching ethical situations from every point of view except the accepted one. You have the capacity to challenge the status quo and bring in new ways of understanding the world we live in.
Mars: Jack of all trades and also, master of many! Clever and capable, able to learn how to do things quickly and easily. You are indiscriminate when it comes to getting things done. Whatever works is what you will use. Non-judgmental, inclusive, able to work well with others or go it on your own. You must watch your electrolytes because you can run on empty for much longer than the rest of us.
Wherever you have Aquarius in your birth mandala, this is where you may manifest that quirky, unique, individualistic part of yourself. And it is vital that you do so. Aquarius will take you into your own potential. It will guide you into the brilliance that you can be. Follow the breadcrumbs into the shining parts of your soul force. Be unique. Be singular. Find your tribe!
If Aquarius is found in your 1st house:
You like to do things in your own way and at your own pace. You know how to take the lead though not because you want to be a leader. You are able to approach situations with innovation and adaptability. Watch out for a tendency to be ornery just for the sake of it!
You need to create a unique and creative set of values. It isn’t easy for you to go along with your ancestors’ point of view unless you first make it your own point of view. Money is a tool, not a commodity for you so you might find that you go through cycles of prosperity and cycles of want.
Communication is universal for you. You need to be able to understand EVERYONE and you would like everyone to understand you. Innovative and creative when it comes to intellectual pursuits, you might have to slow down a bit so that the rest of us can catch up.
At the core of your being you are completely and utterly individualistic. Family for you is based on a commonality of philosophy more than a genealogy. Emotionally independent for the most part, watch that you do not detach yourself from others to the point of no return. Your job is to keep it personal with those that you need to keep it personal with.
You need a measure of independence when it comes to romance. Creative and prolifically so for the most part. There is a certain uniqueness in the way you express yourself so depending on the rest of your chart, you could be an artist that cuts a new path societally.
You prefer to create your own work habits and your approach to the day to day is singular. You know how to work independently and how to set your own time schedules when it comes to completing projects. Inventive? You bet!
Relationship is like a book that has yet to be written for you. Conventional ways of relating make you want to pull your hair out. If it is weird, you can handle it. If there are rules, you want to get up and leave. The thing that is the most seductive to you is anything that doesn’t abide by predetermined codes of conduct. Keep them guessing is your motto.
You can be fearless when it comes to the mysteries of life. Nothing can stop you when it comes to exploring secrets both within yourself and others. If something doesn’t make sense, you will keep trying to make sense out of it until you do. Nothing shocks you when it comes to the underbelly of why people do the things that they do. Because of your ability to detach, you can be a real facilitator to those who are experiencing trauma.
You are intoxicated with all that you have yet to discover. Strange-ness does not phase you and you prefer the company of those who you do not yet know intimately. Always ready to go one step further than the rest, you are an intrepid traveler both literally and philosophically. You enjoy challenging yourself with cutting edge ideas and approaches to being alive.
You have the ability to create new strategies both personally and socially. You can inspire others to step outside the lines, to be unconventional, to challenge the status quo. Because you have the vision to see a possible future, you can be a leader when it comes to changing things. If something is established but you can see that it is no longer working, you have the courage and insight to put a new plan into action.
You love the tribe. Community is something that is a core motivation force for you. What you want is a new kind of community, a different way of being part of a group. You are a revolutionary, a one of a kind activist when you find the thing that makes you want to fight for the right!
The depths of your psyche is a weird and wonderful playground. Often able to pull up memories that come from other times and even other psyches, you are not afraid to be alone with your own thoughts. There is always something new to discover deep within yourself. Complicated and yet strangely simple, they broke the mold after they made you!
Aquarius is the flavor of the future. As we shake off the last vestiges of the Piscean age, we sense that something wonderful and exhilarating is just a breath away. The egalitarian energy of Aquarius promises us equality, justice and truth. Do we have the capacity to embrace the nobility of that promise? Can we build something that will be fair for all? I guess we are about to find out!