Knowing Aries When You See Him
Aries never looks before he leaps. His mother never cautioned, “If you run with a stick you’ll poke an eye out!” At six, he challenged bullies twice his size. At sixteen he built his castle; he made the ceilings tall as sequoia trees. He strung an acrobat’s tightrope from room to room—sixty feet up, no net below. Now that he’s much older, he flies a hang-glider from the bedroom to the library, where there are books everywhere. Biographies and autobiographies—all about him: how he crossed the Alps with Hannibal, wrestled grizzlies, escaped from pirates; he’s even been to the Moon.
Aries is popular with the ladies—the celestial ladies. They guide his feet up snow-drenched mountains, fling trees to block his enemies; they send magic rope, golden eagles and unbeatable swords his way, just in the nick of time. Ask them why they take such good care of him and you don’t get the usual answers. He’s handsome, of course, dripping with youthful enthusiasm. He’s got strength to die for. Sexy too. But it’s his heart they swear they love. So pure. Whatever he does, he believes in.
“I wasn’t always this way,” he confesses. “I was reckless, an egomaniac. Until I burnt my house down while playing with fire. I spent the whole night studying the flames. By morning, I had learned its language. Fire leaps up with love, you know; it has more secrets than a forest of trees. If you can draw it into your heart and contain it, you’ll achieve impossible things.”
With Aries, “self” and “doing” are everything. Aries wants you to do yourself as though you were a verb. Call him in with some positive narcissism. I did not know what this meant until I relinquished my dislike of Aries people. Zodiac aversions arise when, out of the countless people you find annoying, you discover two or three share the same sign. This entitles you to roll your eyes and look knowingly whenever that sign is mentioned—until, as a spiritual person, you learn that everyone you dislike is a reflection of yourself. You resolve to appreciate that sign’s virtues, but keep coming up with more reasons to dislike it. Then one day you stumble across the thing you can’t do, and you realize those fill-in-the-blank-zodiac people can do it without a second thought.
My mother is an Aries. A former boyfriend was an Aries. That co-worker I tangled with in 1991 was an Aries too. Despite their sunny, inspiring nature and boundless enthusiasm, I’ve found Aries people can be rough and reckless—Stanley Kowalski brutes to my faint-hearted Blanche DuBois. Their ruling planet Mars connects them to their passions, so they compete, strike, and leap without being braked by thought. I may say I’d like to do something for months, even years before I do it (if I do it). I like to think about my actions, have discussions with friends in town, imagine strategies, consider the consequences, fantasize the rewards. But Aries people will just go off and do it. They’ll even skip the conversations with friends. (This is what makes them chaotic and unpredictable.)
But then one year I called on Aries for help and something new got into me. I had a writing project that had been languishing for months. The next day Aries startled me out of bed and sent me into my office where I just started writing. I had no plan. I simply showed up at my computer and started doing. Four days later, I had the entire project designed. I was delighted, of course, but also amazed at the creativity that had been inside of me, waiting to come out. Ah, so that’s what it means to discover yourself through action—the Aries way!
Waiting for Aries to appear is the fun part. No way can I predict his entrance. But it will likely be full of passion and energy—so do be careful when driving, crossing streets, starting political discussions, or working with knives. Aries likes to sneak up on you and yell “Surprise!” So be on the lookout. You might find him in the garden bursting with new colors and growth. You might hear him in the treetops singing a joyful song. If a sexy red dress calls to you from that little shop around the corner, it could be Aries trying to get you to have a little more fun. He might strike as a sudden desire for “something more.” He might rise you up off the couch one day, ready to cut through boredom, fear, useless anger, self-doubt, or the self-image that no longer fits. You may be surprised at your new daring. Don’t worry if you know exactly where you’re going. Just go!
Zodiac archetypes are living energies. Develop your eyes and ears and you’ll meet them in the most surprising places! Make 2017 the year of archetypal vibrance. Enjoy imagination and support with my monthly Moon workshop .
© 2017 Dana Gerhardt
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