The Astrology Podcast
Transcript of Episode 347, titled:
With Chris Brennan and Rick Levine
Episode originally released on April 14, 2022
Note: This is a transcript of a spoken word podcast. If possible, we encourage you to listen to the audio or video version, since they include inflections that may not translate well when written out. Our transcripts are created by human transcribers, and the text may contain errors and differences from the spoken audio. If you find any errors then please send them to us by email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Transcribed by Mary Sharon
Transcription released April 18, 2022
Copyright © 2022 TheAstrologyPodcast.com
CHRIS BRENNAN: Hey, my name is Chris Brennan and you’re listening to The Astrology Podcast. In this episode, I’m going to be talking with astrologer Rick Levine, and we’re going to do a deep dive into the meaning of the zodiac sign Aries and talk about its different qualities and characteristics and significations in a really full two-hour episode just looking at the significations of that sign. So hey, Rick, welcome to the podcast.
RICK LEVINE: Hello, Chris. I’m happy to be here with you again. Although I question the idea of doing a deep dive on Aries. Is there such a thing? [laughs]
CB: Yeah, I think your alternative title was a fast dive into Aries, which was probably more fitting and appropriate. But between your areas and your Mars placements and my heavy Saturn placements, hopefully, we’ll find a nice middle ground in between.
RL: Yeah. Well, and I think that’s one of the illusions about, I would say both Aries and Gemini, is that they are shallow or that they’re all upfront, and they are, but there is depth in both of them in their own ways. So yeah, I’m looking forward to doing this deeper dive. And for the record, I should mention that not only do I have– and we’ll probably get here because I know you’re very thorough with this stuff– not only do I have Sun, Mercury, Venus, Mars in a close conjunction in Aries, but they are trine Pluto. So, deep doesn’t scare me. [laughs]
CB: Okay. Yes, so those are your bonafides for this episode, is your Aries stellium. This is part of a new series, I just finished a series last year where I went through each of the planets one by one and did an entire episode with a deep dive into the significations to each of the planets, and that went so well that I wanted to start a new series this year where I do the same thing with each of the 12 signs of the zodiac. So we’re going to start this episode, this is going to be our first one looking at the sign of Aries. And in order to do that, I was trying to think like who is the best astrologer that has the most Aries placements? And you just kept coming to mind as the top person on my list. What planets do you have in that again? And can I share your chart?
RL: You absolutely may. I have Eris in Aries, [laughs] like everyone else who’s alive. But I have the Sun in mid-Aries, the Sun at 16 and change, and I have Mercury, Venus, and Mars all lower degrees but all within six degrees or so of the Sun. So Mercury at nine, Mars at 12, Venus at 13, and the Sun at 16. But I also have the north node there too and they’re all in the 11th house. When uninitiated people ask me my sign astrologically, I sometimes tell them I’m an Aquararian. Because even though I have no planet in Aquarius, Uranus is my first planet over the Ascendant. I have an Aquarius midheaven and I have four planets in the north node in the 11th house. So I have that aquarian-flavored or ary-flavored Aries energy.
CB: Right. And that’s really one of the complicated things once people get beyond the initial phase of Sun sign astrology and everybody knows their Sun sign and everyone has this perception that you’re just one zodiac sign. But then you learn that there’s other planets in different signs of the zodiac and in different houses and that have different aspects once you start learning more advanced forms of astrology and realize that everybody’s a combination of a bunch of different signs and placements and planets, that creates a more complex picture. But nonetheless, sometimes there can be more dominant themes in a person’s life or in a person’s chart and sometimes that can help provide insight into the underlying meaning of the sign. That’s one of the reasons I wanted to do this series with astrologers that have some of those placements strong in their chart, because then I think that everyone has the greatest insight into their own sign or into the signs that are the most prominent in their chart, and so I thought you can help me sort of walk through and get a deeper understanding of some of the positive and some of the challenging and everywhere in between sort of characteristics of Aries.
RL: Yeah, I think it’s a great idea. I’m happy to be your first case. Of course, as an Aries, I’m happy to be first at almost anything. Often there’s a price that an Aries will pay for being first. You know, there’s a phrase in the computer world, people know what the leading edge is but in the technology world, there’s a phrase called the bleeding edge. That’s where Aries hang out because first isn’t always easy.
CB: Yes, sometimes you’ve got to shed a little blood in order to do that, to make headway and to be the first into the breach in some instances. Although I guess that’s getting a little ahead. So let me set the stage by first just showing this zodiac graphic from our zodiac poster that [Paula Bella Mini] and I put together a few years ago that just shows the 12 signs of the zodiac and their basic characteristics or basic qualities in Western tropical astrology. The basic initial things that we need to know about Aries is that it’s a masculine or diurnal sign because it’s an odd sign. It’s the first so it’s number one and therefore it’s an odd sign as opposed to an even the sign. It’s a cardinal sign so out of the different quadruplets or modalities, cardinal fixed and mutable. It’s a cardinal sign because Aries falls at the very beginning of the season. It falls just after the vernal equinox, so just at the beginning of the spring season. It’s a fiery or fire sign out of the four qualities of Earth, air, fire, and water– the four traditional elements. And then finally, its planetary ruler is the planet Mars. It’s from these four primary qualities that we draw most of the major significations of Aries come from different combinations of those different qualities in astrology and that are interpreted symbolically. Let me show one more little image, just Zoom in on that. And then finally one other stats thing to show for Aries, this is the glyph for Aries or the symbol for Aries that’s up at the top and it’s supposed to sort of depict a ram’s head.
RL: It also shows kind of like a fountain. You know, when you look at things that are brand new, they germinate often in this kind of stem that bifurcates. And so in a way if you think of a waterspout coming up and then it separates, things come into reality as unity. There’s a singularity at the beginning but then as it grows it complexifies, if that’s a real word. I think it probably is. And I think that aside from being the horns on a ram’s head, and of course Aries often lead by walking forward by leading with their head, the fact of the matter is that that symbol also represents the gushing forth of id as Freud would call it, the life force that comes out as singularity and then becomes more complex.
CB: I like that. That makes sense. So yeah, you’re right, it does look kind of like a sprout that’s just pushed through the ground initially, and it’s just that first little initial inkling of the full plant that’s had to push through the dirt in the soil in order to get out above into the air.
RL: I have someone I know who is a beekeeper and trust me, this is like a total astrological little digression here. And he has told me that when dandelions appear, bees forget whatever else they were pollinating. The dandelions are so demanding, they’re so present with pollen that they become like drunk on dandelions. And as you may know, dandelions are, I think, maybe the only plant that is a natural plant that can go from flat just poking up above the ground to full flower in one day, that’s how fast they grow. And they’re a first, you know, first of the spring plant. So dandelions are very much an Aries kind of a plant if you’re gonna give it a planetary signature if you will. I don’t have it handy but I wish I did. You can post a link in the comments when this is posted later on, but I have photographs that I’ve taken with a macro lens of dandelions very, very, very up close. And all the inside of the dandelion before it goes to seed, they’re all little stamens and every stamen looks exactly like the Aries glyph. It’s crazy. They all come up as one and then separate out. And when you look at that, it’s like what the heck? And Dandelions are very Ary-in.
CB: Okay, brilliant. Let’s see, going back. There’s the cliff. The name is Aries. Aries actually is Latin for ram. Like it means translating the Latin term. The Latin term was a translation of the Greek term and it means the ram that is the animal totem that was originally associated with this sign of the zodiac because each sign has a specific animal that’s associated with it. And in terms of other stats with the ancient or so-called traditional essential dignities, Aries is said to be the domicile or the ruling sign of Mars. It’s said to be the sign in which the Sun is exalted because Aries is the first month of spring in the northern hemisphere, and it’s when the days start growing longer and the nights start growing shorter. Aries is said to be the fall or the sign of the depression of the planet Saturn, and it’s said to be the sign of the detriment or the sign of adversity or exile of Venus, because it’s opposite to one of Venus’s ruling signs which is Libra,
RL: I have three of four of those planets, by the way. I have Mars, the Sun, and Venus all in mid-Aries. So we can talk about the good, the bad, and the ugly.
CB: Right, we’re going to try to hit the full gamut of just about everything. The only other basic thing that I haven’t mentioned yet is that in body parts, Aries is set to rule the head based on this system where you start from the top of the body and then assign the signs of the zodiac going in order from first to last. And since Aries is the first sign, it gets assigned to the first part of the body which is the head.
RL: By the way before we go on, I’d like to just come back to the word cardinal for a moment because Aries as the first of the cardinal signs, I think holds a special place. But many people don’t realize that the etymology of the word cardinal, it actually derives– and I’m not sure I really thoroughly understand how etymology traces because it’s not always the words that sound exactly similar, but it is in fact, the etymological origins of the word Aries comes from- I’m sorry, the etymological origin of the word cardinal comes from an old English word, henge, H, E, N, G, E like in Stonehenge, which actually means hinge. And that a cardinal point is a hinge point. We often think of the cardinal points as initiation; they’re the beginning of the four seasons, they’re the beginning of each of the quarters, they’re the points from which the other points on the compass arise… But what’s intriguing is that if you go back I don’t know, four or 5000 years ago, then you live next door to the equivalent of a Steve Jobs. Rather than inventing the iPad, he might have invented the hinge. We don’t think of that as a great technology, but the idea to have a wall that is stable, Saturn if you will, and to be able to open that wall and go through it and then close it again and have that stable wall maintain its stability was a huge technological move forward. The idea of cardinal signs being hinge points are very interesting. And of course, just as a quick aside, the Cardinals in the Catholic church were meant to be hinges that actually interacted with the public. And it’s from the red costume– Aries is red, we didn’t make that association– but the red color of the Cardinals’ costumes actually is where the bird, the cardinal, got its name. So just a little fun diversion on that word cardinal, which really means a hinge, an opening to something new.
CB: Right. Yeah. That was a really important word in ancient astrology because it also means and the Greek word that it’s connected to means pivot, because it’s the turning point the point in which something turns suddenly or is pivotal, and so it’s tied in astronomically directly to the notion that Aries and the other cardinal signs are the point in which the seasons turn. And there’s a turning or a change in the season so that it switches from, in the case of Aries, from the winter season to the spring season in the northern hemisphere and so there’s a sudden change or a pivot.
RL: A pivot. That’s what a hinge does, a hinge pivots. But in its pivot, the stability of the system is not lost.
CB: Right. Yeah. So with that, that’s a really good point though because this is something that four of our signs of the zodiac we all share in common, which is the four cardinal signs which are Aries, Cancer, Libra and Capricorn is that they all fall at the very beginning of their respective seasons when the Sun makes a definitive change and there’s a definitive change in the amount of heat and light during that part of the seasons. So in the spring season, it’s at the point where once the Sun passes the vernal equinox, the days start getting longer than the nights and that is the sort of pivot point or that changing point in terms of our environment and atmosphere and just what’s happening astronomically in the sky.
RL: Yeah, exactly. Yeah.
CB: So from that we get a lot of many of the basic significations of Aries which have to do with things being initiated and initiating change in some way, right?
RL: Yeah. And the word head is such an interesting word. You know, when you go to the head of the class or the head of the line, that’s first. And again, often you can spot the person with the strong Aries influence in their chart. When they walk, they’re like slightly hinged at the waist, and the head almost like they have the horns on a ram. They lead with their head, they walk with their head forward. It’s really interesting once you notice it, you can see it all over the place.
CB: Yes, there’s all sorts of really basic things that are just a basic astronomical property or a symbolic property like being associated with the head or being associated with the beginning of the season. And then what we’re going to do throughout this series is those basic properties then get interpreted symbolically and will show up in different ways in a person’s life, both in their sometimes in their personality or their personal characteristics, sometimes in their actions or the way they act, or sometimes in the way that certain events manifest in a person’s life. Like, for example, they might happen more quickly or suddenly to some extent in a cardinal sign compared to, let’s say, a fixed sign which happened to fall in the middle of the seasons where things develop more slowly or more slow to develop.
RL: That is true. And yet, just because it’s a cardinal sign doesn’t mean that it’s specifically focused on the present moment, which is the uniqueness of Aries. Because Cancer as a cardinal sign always has an eye in the rearview mirror, it’s always holding on to some emotion from the past, the childhood, or whatever. Libra is always balancing the inner with the outer, rather than just what’s going on for me in the present moment. And the Capricorn is always calculating about how it’s going to get to where it’s going to where as– we’ll get to this later on, I assume– but Ram Dass who wrote the book Be Here Now was an Aries because Aries has to do with that fleeting moment that is the, what’s the right word, it’s the Mecca. It’s the ideal point of Buddhism to be here now, to be in the present moment, which is uniquely never stable because it always immediately moves into the past.
CB: Right. So one of your primary slogans for Aries, what was that again?
RL: [laughs] Ready, fire, aim.
CB: Okay. I like that because it packs several things into the same metaphor, and one of them that we’ll just keep coming back to regularly and I think that one of the dominant ones is Mars and Mars being the ruler of Aries. And it’s not, at least traditionally, it’s not the only ruler of Aries. Aries is ruled by Mars, and the other Mars-ruled sign is Scorpio. I should have said and clarify it’s not the only sign that Mars rules. But here in Aries, we’re going to see one side of Mars and one expression of Mars and then at some point once we get to Scorpio we’ll see some other sides of Mars but while there’s some overlap because they’re both ruled by the same planet, there’s also a lot of distinct tendencies as well.
RL: Yes, very much so. And the Mars in Aries is that sense of urgency of being in the present moment, where with Scorpio, there’s always this sense of, “Where will this present moment lead? Where am I coming from? Where am I going to?” I sometimes say that if an Aries– and I’m generalizing here I’m talking pure Aries energy– if an Aries and a Scorpio have a fight or a debate, or in other words there’s some interaction of conflict between Aries and Scorpio, the Aries has to win on the first blow. Because if it doesn’t, the Scorpio will always win. Because the Scorpio has the staying power that Aries doesn’t, and yet Aries has that sense of intense incredible power only in the present moment that Scorpio doesn’t.
CB: Yeah, the staying power because it’s a fixed sign. Scorpio versus Aries being a cardinal sign and having this amazing initial push and burst of energy that can sort of bulldoze or plough through anything at the beginning, but sometimes doesn’t always have the staying power or sometimes can get fatigued in the long run.
RL: I have a friend who’s a master chess player and as a kid I played a bunch of chess I was never awesome, but I was pretty good. And this guy goaded me for years into sitting down and playing a game of chess with him, and finally one evening I did. And I beat him. And he was beside himself, he was freaked out. Then he said, “We’re playing again right now.” And I played him again I would say about four or five times over the following months, and he beat me in 15 moves every time because my Ariesness was so intense in the moment and so forward, and he didn’t realize what my style would be because I was erratic. I was in the moment. But I could never get away with that again. That’s a perfect example of Aries energy against other energies. It can be brilliant in the moment, but it can also be like a supernova. And I think that’s one of the dilemmas of Aries energy, it’s how do you sustain it? It’s one of the reasons why Mars is exalted in Capricorn. Because Mars in Capricorn finishes the job it starts. Mars in Aries or Aries in general, would much rather start 10 jobs and let someone else finish them.
CB: That’s so funny. That’s a really good example because I had a recent one of that where a friend of mine who has Aries placements challenged me to play Mario Kart and I was like, “Yeah, I’ll beat you in Mario Kart. I haven’t played it in 20 years but I’m sure I’m still really good at it.” And they just decimated me in the first few games and that was the end of it, I was humiliated. But then over the next few days, it was like a Rocky training marathon with Eye of The Tiger playing in the background and I’m just practicing Mario Kart for the next several days. And then we had a rematch and I had to take them down in order to even things out as with all of my Scorpio placements. So your analogy of chess is speaking to me on a very personal level right now as a Scorpio.
CB: But I should add here. It’s been said that chess is the greatest waste of human intelligence outside of an advertising agency. [laughs]
CB: Okay. Yeah, it’s an interesting game. So that’s actually one of our Aries people, I believe, is Garry Kasparov who has Aries placements in the fifth house which is like the place of games. And it’s one of the thing that’s really interesting about the fifth house, it’s that sometimes when those heavy placements in a person’s chart do get channeled into the fifth house, they get channeled into things that otherwise other people might think of as just a hobby or something like that’s not important, in this instance like chess, but for him he became Garry Kasparov with Sagittarius rising and Jupiter in Aries with the Sun also in Aries in the fifth whole sign house, he became the world champion at chess at this game, and that became one of his primary things in life.
RL: Yeah. And as an Aries, we look at his Mars in Leo kind of reflective back at the fifth house, we normally think of gaming or competition like that. I mean, Aries can be competitive, but the fifth house indoor Leo is often more associated with the play of the sport if you will, and Garry Kasparov had certainly that in spades, although it might be why to consider this a grand fire trine, the fact that the Mars in Leo, the Sagittarius rising and Moon and that cluster of planets– well, the Sun and Jupiter in particular in Aries really make this person someone who in the moment can be terrible. And I mean terrible in the sense of like, you know, a terrible infant, someone who has the force and the power.
CB: Yeah, that’s a really good point. You’re focusing also on the fiery, so he has a huge dominance of fire placements in his chart. And that brings up one thing which is just us needing to focus on and unpack Aries as a fire sign and what it means to be fiery since fire is actually one of my major keywords for Aries. Or sometimes if a person has a real firebowl as an expression, it can be like an Aries thing. But you’re also bringing up another important thing we have to get into, which is that for everybody that has placements in Aries, it’s going to be modified to some extent based on where Mars then is placed in the chart, because Mars is the ruler of Aries. And if, for example in Garry Kasparov’s chart, Jupiter and the Sun are in Aries, that means they’re partially depending on the ruler of that sign Mars for part of their expression since Mars is placed in Leo, part of the expression of those placements is through the placement of Mars and Leo so that you get a blend of Aries and Leo in this chart rather than something that’s just like purely Aries placements.
RL: One have the words that comes to my mind because I’ve trained it to that most people don’t think of, is something that I got directly from Carl Jung. Carl and I were hanging out one day and he said, “Rick…” No, I’m kidding. But I got directly from his writing, and that is that in Jung’s framework, fire is the sign of intuition. Now most astrologers think of, “Oh, intuition, that’s Pisces.” But the thing about intuition is that intuition doesn’t have a process of perception, sensation, logic, make a plan, and then do it. Intuition basically is a fully formed idea that is immediately turned into action, that a fire burns intuitively. Meaning it doesn’t think, “Well, should I go this way or that way? Well, that log’s drier but this tree is bigger and I can…” It just does. And so the idea of fire as intuitive is really an interesting concept. And it takes someone like a Garry Kasparov and we’ll see this in other charts, where fire signs somehow the way they can be in the moment without having a process is sometimes based upon this high level of intuition like a fire. They just know what they need to do to keep burning.
CB: Yeah, and I was thinking about this a lot and I think part of it is there’s another word that’s like that but might be closer, which is instinctual. That Aries has an instinct and will go on instinct, but it’s almost like an internal impulse of the instinct of knowing what to do versus let’s say, some water signs which we might characterize as more intuitive or having emotional intuition or something like that. There’s something different about the instinct to do things or the instinct to act that Aries has that sometimes guides them.
RL: Yeah, that is true. Yeah, I think that that is very true.
CB: Okay. Let’s start getting into some keywords because I have a tonne. One of the things that I did thinking about this episode is I just put a call out on Twitter, and maybe I’ll put a link to this thread because I can’t cite everybody that turned in significations, but I wrote some of them down and I was just like, “What keywords do you associate with Aries?” And a tonne of different people responded, sending in all sorts of different significations that was really good and gave me a full range of different things to draw on and different sides of things because different people have different takes on it. Some people are Aries themselves or have different Aries placements, other people don’t. And maybe some get along with that energy or others don’t get along with it due to how their own chart is set up. So it’s interesting seeing how some people perceive different things based on their own placements. One of the things that I came up with as I was trying to write down some of my own significations, though, is quick and zooming. For some reason zooming around is one of my first things that I think of when it comes to Aries-
RL: That’s interesting. That’s an interesting word because I think of zooming also as Gemini-ish because zoom doesn’t necessarily have direction. But go ahead, I like that. Go ahead.
CB: Just the idea of it. Because with Mars ruling the sign, Mars is really about movement and is about speed and quickness as opposed to Saturn, which is slow and it slows things down and sometimes grinds things to a halt. And that’s sometimes why, for example, this Mars-Saturn conjunction that we recently had or the one that happened two years ago at the beginning of the pandemic when the lockdowns happened, that’s sometimes why the energy of Mars-Saturn can be experienced as somewhat negative because you get those two extreme tendencies of wanting to go very fast or something forcing you to go very slow. And it can grind things to a halt and hold back or cancel out all movement or create a conflict between them. But in unpackaging that, I think one of the underlying things that I keep coming back to as an archetype for Aries is the notion of movement and speed and quickness.
RL: Yeah, and that speed of Aries unlike Gemini, is almost instantaneous at least in concept. It’s been said that the shortest distance between two points is not a line, it’s a thought. And in a way although Aries is action, is that there’s this short distance between the idea of what’s happening and where you want to get to, that makes that sense of the present moment almost expanded. It’s like everything that’s happening is happening right now. And so yeah, it’s movement at the speed of light, you know? And certainly Albert Einstein had some Aries influence in his chart, and so there’s that whole sense of Aries being instantaneity, which can be perceived as very fast.
CB: Yeah, and sometimes that can be really constructive, like striking while the iron is hot for example as an expression
RL: That’s a good Aries line. Strike and hot are both Aries words.
CB: Yeah. But then sometimes there can be another side of that which can be like impatience, like the person that wants to do something right now and doesn’t want to wait in order to do it so that you get sort of both sides of that.
RL: And there’s a price to pay often for too much unbridled Aries. And I think that that’s associated with youth. I still have that issue in my life, but looking back to my childhood in teen years, there are certainly situations that I got myself into that had I stopped in thought for a moment, I would have realized maybe this isn’t such a good idea. [laughs]
CB: Right. And I forgot to mention at the top of this the date for this episode, just because I was trying to include that, but it’s April 10th, 2022. We started at about 1:08 pm in Denver, Colorado with Leo rising and the Sun right around the midheaven at 20 degrees of Aries. We had some technical snafus for the original chart that we were shooting for a couple of days ago, but this is still nice that we’re still in Aries season and I’m going to try to record these episodes one a month with the Sun going through each of those signs as we do it over the course of the next year?
RL: Cool. Yeah.
CB: Yeah. So going back to what you were talking about, we talked a little bit about striking while the iron is hot and then also some of the downsides of some of that, which can be impatience but then going back to the positives, makes me think of another saying which is “The the early bird catches the worm.” And that might be another Aries thing in terms of, you know, being first at something, sometimes being a winning combination or sometimes being successful as a result of being first and being the first one to take the risk at being the first to do something.
RL: Yeah. I think that one of the traits of Aries is, I was gonna say not being afraid but I’m not sure that that’s quite correct, it’s being afraid and not being resistant to facing the fear and pushing through it, of being the first one to do whatever fill in the blank.
CB: So, courage or courageousness.
RL: Yeah. You know, two really good Aries keywords are pioneering and enterprising. Now, both of those words indicate that the person is doing something that other people haven’t done yet. If you’re an enterprising person, you can put pieces together and create something that has never been done before, or something that in some way is a combination of things that you have to figure out as you’re going along. You can’t be a pioneer and make a game plan. I mean, if you’re a pioneer, as soon as you take that first step into the unknown, your game plan is survival. You may have skills that you’ve worked on, you may be adept at certain things that make you a better pioneer than someone else. And I’m not talking about just the Daniel Boones and John Fremonts who were pioneers in the United States who went into territories that were as of yet discovered, and they used their Marsy Aries energy to kind of to lead the way like a scout would lead the way who’d go where other people have not been. Captain James T. Kirk in the Starship Enterprise is just an absolute perfect archetype for Aries. What do they do? They go to places that have never been explored. But it’s also the pioneers of intellect and the pioneers of ideas that are also airing Arian that are people who are going into places that are brand new. And for an Aries, that’s exciting. It’s exciting being somewhere where no one else has ever been. Whereas for someone else, that might be so threatening that they would rather go and take the tried and true. I’m reminded of a William Blake line from The Marriage of Heaven and Hell where he writes that the road of genius is a crooked one, where that of an improver is straight. And I think that there’s a sense of that Aries recklessness that is not a straight line. Because the Aries person who may be the great pioneer may go and take three or four journeys that totally fail, that don’t get to where they want to go until they actually get to where they want to go.
CB: Right. You got to break some eggs in order to make an omelet, I think is the saying.
RL: I like that. Yeah.
CB: This brings up some other things. One of them we might get into now is there’s a cluster of significations connected with Mars that have to do with like, the warrior, the fighter, the leader, and one of them is also the hero. And for me, that’s one of the best overarching or underlying archetypes for Aries is the notion of the hero at its highest expression and the notion of the hero’s journey, which is this sort of concept that’s been developed over the past century by Joseph Campbell and other people of this notion of there being this core archetype that shows up in many different myths from different cultures about what the sequence is in the development of a hero archetype, and what kind of journey that they go through from simple origins to something more complex to the person that we think of at the end of the story. I have a little snippet from Wikipedia where they’re talking about Joseph Campbell’s take on this and the concept is that, “A hero ventures forth from the world of common day into a region of supernatural wonder: fabulous forces are there encountered and a decisive victory is won: The hero comes back from this mysterious adventure with the power to bestow boons on his fellow man.” That’s kind of a short version of it, but the long version of that is that there’s a number of different stages and steps along the way in the journey but that they– again from another paragraph– it says that they begin in an ordinary world. And the hero must depart from the ordinary world where he receives a call to adventure, which is an Aries type signification. And it says with the help of a mentor, because the hero is often a younger type figure, which is another Aries type thing of like youth or youthfulness. It says, “The hero will cross a guarded threshold, leading him to a supernatural world, where familiar laws and order do not apply. There, the hero will embark on a road of trials, where he is tested along the way.” So that’s another Aries thing, which is sometimes having setbacks or trials like trying something initially and not necessarily succeeding. Then it says, “The archetypal hero is sometimes assisted by allies. As the hero faces the ordeal, he encounters the greatest challenge of the journey. Upon rising to the challenge, the hero will receive a reward or boon. Campbell’s theory of the monomyth continues with the inclusion of a metaphorical death and resurrection. The hero must then decide to return with this boon to the ordinary world. The hero then faces more trials on the road back. Upon the hero’s return, the boon or gift may be used to improve the hero’s ordinary world, in what Campbell calls, the application of the boon.” This is all just from a Wikipedia page on the synopsis of his book, The Hero With a Thousand Faces. But they’re just like that notion of the hero, and then of course we’ve seen that show up in many different arts and culture type things. Like for example in Star Wars where George Lucas drew on that for the figure of Luke in the very first Star Wars movie, and how he starts out as sort of like a humble moisture farmer on a desert planet.
RL: And apparently, George Lucas had a conversation with Joseph Campbell in crafting some of these figures, you know?
CB: Yeah, right. He drew on that explicitly in developing the figure of Luke, and then Luke finds out all the stuff about his lineage and goes on to be the hero and save the day so to speak. And it’s funny actually because I was looking through my files and the actor who even played Luke, Mark Hamill has Jupiter in Aries, which is funny placement on there.
RL: Yeah. I love it when that happens, when the person who’s acting the part– we’ve seen this before, I think Alex Trenoweth just wrote a book on people who play parts that their chart actually supports.
CB: Yeah, which is a major phenomenon. So when it comes to that, that’s one of the highest expressions of the Aries archetype. I feel like is the hero, like there’s somebody that will fight and defend somebody, especially for a cause or for a reason or will defend the downtrodden, or who will fight and sort of strike out and do what’s right even if it means going it alone and encountering hardships or difficulties in order to achieve or defend that which needs to be defended.
RL: Yeah. Yeah, all of that true. And I don’t know if you mentioned the fact that Joseph Campbell was not only an Aries, but had Mercury, Jupiter, and Mars all in Aries too, just as a point of reference.
RL: Yes that’s hugely important. You’ve mentioned his chart and put them in our notes, and I think that’s amazing that he had an Aries stellium. So he had Libra rising and the Sun at five, Mercury at six, Jupiter at six, descendant at 20, and Mars at 21 all in Aries. So the guy that developed this notion or had this observation about the hero’s journey himself had a huge number of placements in Aries which is beautiful.
RL: Well, and the cool thing about this is not just that he had the Mars in Aries, he went on the journey himself, you know? Early on in life, he went and went off into a cabin up in the Adirondack Mountains in New York. You know, people don’t know that the first book that he wrote was a book called A Skeleton Key to Finnegans Wake, which anyone who has any literary orientation knows is a book that was so complicated that most people just said this is gobbledygook, it’s trash, it doesn’t mean anything. And Joseph Campbell actually wrote a book that deciphers it page by page by page, but he did it by going away and then becoming a recluse, and really going on his own journey. And what’s fascinating about his chart is that the Sun, Mercury, and Jupiter are all within almost a quarter of a degree. They’re that close. It’s actually I think 17 minutes of orb from the Sun to Mercury to Jupiter. And they’re in his sixth house, this was his work. They’re trine the Moon in Leo in the 10th house. So he puts on the show, The Man With a Thousand Faces and the PBS specials that he’s known for, but it’s the Sun and Mercury communication and then Jupiter the philosophy, but all in Aries. He made all this stuff up, no one had done this work before ever. That’s a pioneer.
CB: Right. For sure. So this is all sort of positive version. We’re gonna go back and forth because no sign and no placement is either all positive or all negative, and either can express in either constructive or destructive ways and people can take it in different directions, or even somewhere in between. It has to do with like, you know, the person’s own choices, it has to do with the environment that they grew up in, it has to do with– and people can change and manifest different versions of the archetype at different times throughout their life, and can sometimes be not always just one version or another. So that said, you know, we have the highest expression of let’s say, the hero’s journey or the hero archetype with Aries, but then also there can be the fighter or the military figure, or there can be the person that is instigating things that is not the hero but is like let’s say the villain or the person that’s constantly starting fights with people or-
RL: Yeah. The villain or the bully even. The insecure person who is coming out of no strength at all and then overcompensating for it and acting tough because of the fear of what it might be if people realized what a wimp he or she was.
CB: Yeah. Something that came to mind yesterday when I was reading the significations when it gets to that area was the notion of the Napoleon Complex, the notion of somebody that has an insecurity about something with them and in order to hide or make up for that, they overcompensate by being overly aggressive or bossy or something like that.
CB: Exactly. Exactly. Yeah.
CB: Yeah. So that can be an issue to sort of pay attention to or a weakness or a sort of blind spot in some instances is that sometimes there can be a sort of an insecurity that’s masked or covered by sort of aggressiveness or a tendency to fight or a tendency to try to dominate in some sense.
RL: Or even the notion of an Aries being pushy, not even necessarily physically, but Aries- You know, one of the interesting things about Aries is that as the baby of the zodiac, it is unconscious in a very odd way. It’s unconscious like two planets in conjunction have no perspective on one another, that there’s not an awareness because they’re so close together, there is an unconsciousness to it. And the baby who can be amused by their fingers and toes for hours has no idea that the fingers and toes are part of their own being. Everything in the universe is part of the self whether it’s part of the self or not. And here is an interesting thing about Aries’ selfishness versus selflessness. Because theoretically, an Aries would be very selfish. Selfish because Aries is the sign of the self, it’s the first sign, it’s the I, me, mine. It’s the baby who doesn’t know that anyone else has any needs so therefore it takes care of its own needs. But when you look at the developed Aries, you realize that they’ve included in their sense of self, their loved ones, their children, their parents, their family, their country, you know, some sense of a wider concept so that in some ways they’re still being self-ish, but the self is so expanded that it becomes the Thomas Jefferson who wrote the Declaration of Independence. I mean, he can’t make that kind of stuff up. Aries is also the sign of freedom and independence. And you have someone like Jefferson who wrote that in some ways because of his selfishness of wanting to declare his independence, but he projects it out to a larger, wider audience that turns that selfishness into a form of selflessness. It’s an interesting tweak.
CB: Yeah. I like that you mentioned that independence as being a really strong and important Aries keyword, as well as related ones like autonomy and having self-autonomy, wanting to be unencumbered by other people or act on their own, or being self-sufficient is another Aries keyword that’s tied with that complex.
RL: Yeah. And that’s something that you see in people often develop over time. You see the youthful Aries like a ram, being part of a family or a pack or a group. And then as the ram grows older and learns survival, then you see that lone ram on the top of the mountain, or standing alone feeling or apparently looking like it doesn’t need anyone else. And of course, everyone needs someone else it’s not quite that simple, but there is something about that sense of solidarity, aloofness, aloneness… Above it isn’t quite right, but there’s a boundary that makes that Aries in a more mature stance, become more independent.
CB: That makes sense. All right, so let’s see other areas. One of them with the fieriness or the heat, the hotness like the notion of of it being a fire sign, some of the other things that can come up with this can be things like anger. That notion when you get really angry about something and you’re just seeing red is another expression. Red is another color sort of associated with Aries.
RL: Mars, the angry red planet, which is what it’s referred to as.
CB: Right. Anger, redness, bloods. Notions of anger though, sometimes quick to anger or being temperamental can be a sign of Aries.
RL: Yeah. I don’t know that I have anything to add to that other than it’s absolutely true. One thing about the Aries anger though, and this goes back to that concept of a baby, a baby when it feels pain or discomfort it cries, yells, screams, gets angry, and then there’s no trace left of it. As adults, we learn that we can’t always do that. And so there’s something about a raw innocence or immaturity even about an Aries kind of overreacting in some people’s minds and getting angry. But then Aries as a sign– not that people don’t have other influences– but Aries as a sign is not interested in carrying a grudge. Why? Because a grudge refers to something that you’re holding on to from the past. That’s the Cancerian, “I’d rather get even than get angry,” kind of a thing. Aries wants to blow the energy off in the moment, which can upset others, but the Aries is left feeling great because it’s expressed its anger and it’s done with it. Boom!
CB: Right. So it can become sort of furious or there can be an initial rage out, but it’s something where they’re eventually forgiving and the rage doesn’t last necessarily, but eventually they get over it as opposed to let’s say, again, like contrasting that with Scorpio which is like a fixed Mars-ruled sign where it’s like if they get mad about something, they may hold on to it for like years or like decades.
RL: Forever. [laughs]
CB: Yeah, yeah. Brilliant. Okay, that’s really good and really insightful. One of the things we’re doing here I want to clarify is we’re talking a lot about this in the context of personality characteristics and traits and psychology. But through that, you can also understand some of the other ways that some of these archetypes may manifest in more literal situations depending on the context. But because we’re, you know, one of the most accessible ways to access or access the archetype is through the personality characteristics. So I just wanted to mention that briefly because while most of our conversation will focus on that so that people can use it and understand it in a way that’s more immediately relatable, because we’re talking about archetypes, there can be many different ways that these things can manifest in the world in different situations once you understand the underlying dynamics.
RL: Yeah. And I think it’s those dynamics that we see in people that help us understand all of the signs and planets, the archetypes for that matter. Give you a quick example in my life, I mean, obviously I’m more or wider than just an Aries, but there are certain things in my life that aren’t quite Arien. I’ve been accused at various times in my life of being rude. Now, people who know me know I’m a pretty kind person, very kind. I am someone who will go out of my way to be kind when other people might just pass by a situation. However, I sometimes have been accused of being rude by people who I didn’t even know I was interacting with. And that is a negative part of that Aries being in the moment, that you and I can have a conversation and I can just be going somewhere else in the conversation and not even give you any room to to say what you were going to say. Or if you do, just pass it off and go back to what I was doing or saying, because of that whole self-directed notion of Aries of getting to where it’s going to without any distractions. I’ve been in social situations at conferences, where apparently someone has said hello to me and then years told me how rude I was when I didn’t even remember the person saying hello to me. Now, I’m not saying that forgives me. I’m just saying that it’s an Aries kind of a trait of being so focused on what it’s focused on. And that’s another thing that people sometimes skip over with Aries traits. The high level of focus is why an Aries can be such an intense warrior in the moment because there is no past or future. It’s everything is now in this moment and if it doesn’t fit into what I’m doing in this moment, it doesn’t exist. But again, there’s a personality interaction. Now, how does that translate to an archetype that can translate into an archetype that might seem to be self-centered and uncaring when that’s not necessarily what’s going on.
CB: Yeah, one of the words that’s coming up as I hear you describe this is the word brusque.
RL: Good. Good word. Brusque, brush.
CB: Yeah, brusque. I was just looking at the definition of brusque, which I’m going to do several times during this but ‘marked by rude or [prentetory] shortness. But underlying that, it’s not the rudeness itself because the rudeness, I guess, is part of the side effect where some people can experience that as brusque, but the thing underlying it is getting to the point. Getting straight to the point is one of the sayings. And bringing it down to a more practical level, it’s that notion in geometry that the fastest way to get from point A to point B is a straight line, and Aries will take the straight line and the shortest line as their initial impulse rather than, let’s say, some other signs might take a more circuitous route where you go around and you-
RL: -tell a story. Tell a story. [laughs]
CB: Yeah, or you look at the scenery or something. You’re stopping to smell the roses whereas the Aries maybe wants to get more straight to the point, and that can come off as brusque. Maybe as a side effect, but it’s not always necessarily the underlying intention.
RL: Yeah, I think that is true.
CB: That brings up other things, though. It’s like sometimes Aries can come off as sort of rough around the edges or can be rough around the edges for different reasons.
CB: So I was thinking of some of the other keywords I was coming up with were things like a biker or fighter, a warrior, a soldier. One of my favorite examples, for example, of astrologers that I know or knew was my friend, Alan White, and I always used him as my classic Aries rising example with Mars and Aries in a day chart because he was this former soldier, special forces, ex Vietnam veteran, who also was an astrologer.
RL: Yeah, I never knew whether to be scared by Alan or to be totally fascinated by his ability to know stuff that I had no idea about, you know? [laughs]
CB: Right. Because he would show up to conferences with his military fatigues on or regalia on and he had this very gruff brusque way of speaking with this loud booming voice that could be very direct, and he was not one to avoid using profanity and things like that. But sort of underlying that initial impulse or underlying that initial impression was sort of softer, more thoughtful sort of person internally, and he had a lot of other stuff going on in his chart. But that notion that sometimes Aries can be brusque, it can rub some people the wrong way, it can be off-putting.
RL: Hunter S Thompson is another good Aries energy. I think he had an Aries ascendant and he pissed people off because he didn’t give a shit about what they thought or what they were wanted to say. He had his point to make, and he was going to make it.
CB: Yeah, so not being afraid to hurt somebody’s feelings sometimes in order to say what needs to be said or what they feel like saying.
RL: Yeah. And we shouldn’t say that what needs to be said isn’t always what needs to be said. [laughs] That one of the downsides of raw Aries energy is saying things that do not need to be said. I can hear the therapist saying to me, “So why did you say that? Was it because you wanted the other person to know, or did you say it just so that you can feel better about yourself.” And I think often times, that Aries energy can go out of its way to kind of make people angry or annoyed without even necessarily knowing it. But I think there’s also sometimes the sense of knowing it and kind of liking it, you know, that it’s the finger prodder who’s gonna poke until the person reacts somehow. And I think that people can do that.
CB: Yeah. And that can be like the rabble-rouser or somebody that starts, you know, kicks up dust or starts problems by needling or like poking people. For example-
RL: -Chris Rock. I know you were going there. [laughs]
CB: Right. Yeah, there’s a good one. There’s a little questionable thing about his birth data but if the current one that we have is correct, he’s an Aries rising with Mars in Virgo, which is really interesting because that’s another example of how, especially with the rising sign, I think especially the placement of Mars in whatever sign it’s located in will really modify the expression of the rising signs since when Aries is rising, Mars is the ruling planet and so you get more of a blend between the Aries and the Martian energy or Aries and Virgo energy as expressed by Mars.
RL: Yeah. Yeah.
CB: Yeah. So, things said in the heat of the moment. We talked about the Jung thing already and that can sometimes lead to other things, like “born to be wild” was a phrase that I came up with. Or bad to the bone, that song. The notion of Aries can sometimes like being a little bit gruff, and sometimes having that conception of themselves as gruff or putting-
RL: -Marlon Brando. In his earlier movies, he was the tough guy.
CB: Right, the tough guy. That’s a good one.
RL: And Marlon Brando I think is an Aries New Moon. And yeah, there’s a sense of other military people too, you know. We shouldn’t gloss over the fact that the perhaps most convincing of Michel Gauquelin’s work was the idea that people who excelled in the military and in sports tended to have Aries ruling planet Mars in a sector of the chart in a house that was close to one of the cardinal points. And we have soldiers like Colin Powell who may not have spent time in fistfights, but as a military leader used his Aries sense of working with conflict in a way that would be typically Arien.
CB: Yeah, I think that’s really good. And I’m glad you brought up the sports thing because I think sports and sporty are very important and core Aries keywords, because you get some of that- Aries is very kinetic and is very about competition, but also sports and athleticism and being sort of embodied in the body but doing it in a way of acting. You can do something where you’re acting or you’re exerting a sort of explosion of energy that very much fits in with that sort of archetype, and doing it in a way that’s competitive.
RL: Yeah, I’ve seen a couple of instances where Shaq O’Neal kind of exuded that he had Mercury, Venus and Aries rising, where he kind of went out of his way to be gruff and yet- Because Venus was there also, there’s a part of him that underneath that is a lot sweeter than he can appear but he can use that size and physical prowess to bully a situation, to push it around.
CB: Right. Let’s see. Other things… I think defiant can sometimes be an Aries keyword or even a reverence, possibly one that can be tied in with that a little bit in the rebelliousness to some extent or not being afraid to, as we said earlier, hurt somebody’s feelings, but also to break away from something in a more positive or constructive expression that needs to be defied, like defying an oppressive authority figure or something like that.
RL: Che Guevara the revolutionary. Yeah, I think that there’s a sense of wanting to take on power, part for the sport of fighting. There’s that sense of being engaged where that Marsy energy comes to the surface that I think becomes important for Aries that that works. I think that’s an important thing.
CB: Yeah. So, maybe needing something to fight one way or another, needing a way to express that energy and that impulse to fight something, and that that can be sometimes constructively expressed if they’re able to find a cause or a good cause or constructive cause, or sometimes can be destructively expressed if they’re just fighting needlessly or constantly starting conflict with people or even bullying somebody as you said earlier.
RL: Yeah. Someone who kind of exudes that Marsy Aries energy, I don’t think she’s a Sun sign Aries but I think Angelina Jolie, who although may be a character who is known for her physical beauty, is also known for her leading roles as a powerhouse of a woman. You don’t want to mess with this person.
CB: As an action star?
RL: As an action star. The chart’s up, I see, is that although she’s a Gemini, with her Mercury in Gemini so her use of words is certainly well developed, her Moon, Mars, Jupiter are all around and Jupiter closely conjunct her midheaven all in Aries. And that Mars in Aries is like a powerhouse, this is not a woman that you want to be engaged in a battle with.
CB: Yeah, and doing action movies and being seen as kind of like a badass, which is an accurate Aries type signification. And interestingly with those 10th house placements, one of her early roles that she did was when she played Lara Croft in the Tomb Raider movie. And I think part of her story that I’ve used as a 10th house example before she went to– this was one of her first experiences having exposure to another country that was war-torn, and she ended up then devoting a lot of her work and efforts in her career outside of her movie roles to trying to help people, especially from war-torn countries, who are struggling with that and to do like humanitarian aid efforts. That’s something that I’m constantly impressed and surprised by that sometimes when people have difficult placements in their chart, it can manifest as them trying to help out people that are in difficult positions that are described by those placements.
RL: Yeah. She also has some Cancerian stuff also that kind of gives her that sense of caring more than people think she might. What comes across, you know, is the Aries and maybe even the Gemini, but that Cancer is really there and shows up as someone who is a caring and loving person.
CB: Right, for sure. Let’s see. So going back to, you know, there’s some competitive things, never backing down from a challenge is something. I think of Aries sometimes, I think it’s like Marty McFly in the Back to the Future series when whenever in the series, he’s trying to back out of a conflict and he knows he shouldn’t. But then when somebody calls him chicken, he can’t back down from that challenge and he has to take them up and do the race at that point because it sort of connected with his ego in some sense of nobody is going to challenge him and he’s not going to walk away from a challenge in that way.
RL: Right. True. Yeah, that whole idea of not wanting to be seen as weak, I think is really what the issue is. And that fear of being seen as weak then leads to the overcompensation. Tom Petty is a good example of that. Although he is/was a Libra with a pile of planets in Libra, he had Aries rising. And his famous song, I Won’t Back Down, you know, you can lead me to the gates of hell but I won’t back down, that is such an Aries in-your-face. And interestingly enough as Libran and kind of– what’s the word I’m looking for– nice a person as he was, he had this kind of, again, we’re back to the badass image, you know, the leather jacket and the kind of the toughness of appearance. And the album title I think that song was from was Damn the Torpedoes. It’s like, “I won’t back down.” And the story is that he allegedly wrote that song while being deposed by attorneys that had to do with who owned his material. They were in LA, they were high level entertainment attorneys deposing him, and he’s sitting there in the deposition with this rather large knife in a black leather jacket cleaning his nails with this knife, basically not giving an inch. There’s that Aries kind of like tougher than nails appearance when he really maybe felt differently on the inside.
CB: And you mentioned a knife, that’s always been a Mars keyword.
RL: Oh, sharp edges. Yes.
CB: Yeah. And sharpness, which then has meant many different meanings. Or a sword is another good Mars-type thing. Yeah. And then going back, the competitiveness, wanting to be a winner, like wanting to be number one as again, probably an extension not just of the competitiveness, but the notion of Aries being the first sign and the notion of being number one reoccurring in many different ways through the archetype.
RL: Yeah. As you were talking about the whole idea of the knife and/or a bullet, there’s a sense of Mars relating to Aries as penetrating. And even in the sexual act, which can be associated with the Martian assertion or aggression, there’s this sense of a tool that penetrates. Which actually can be the mind, and I think sometimes people forget that Aries isn’t just a physical warrior, that the Aries can be an actual intellectual warrior, someone who fights for their ideas whatever they may be. I think of Rachel Maddow, for example, who has a Sun in Aries and I think that’s even on her midheaven if I’m not mistaken. The fact that she uses her intelligence to actually fight for her convictions, but I can’t imagine her in a physical fracas. It doesn’t fit who she is.
CB: Yeah, that’s a good point. So sometimes it comes out intellectually, other times it’s like the Aries energy if it was in the seventh house, it could come out in relationships. Or if Venus was there something or like that. Sometimes you can be attracted to that energy in your life and that energy can show up in other people in terms of who you attract or the type of people that you gravitate towards. So maybe it’s like the person that’s like, you know, interested in the guy with the leather jacket or the rebellious person who is mysterious that looks rough around the edges or something like that?
RL: Yeah, I think that’s true. One other thing that just popped into my mind which I don’t think we’ve even touched on, which is also absolutely an Aries trait, we talked about the risk-taking in the concept of enterprising or pioneering, but we didn’t use the word gambling. Gambling is really just a form of risk-taking. And I knew this gentleman, a very well-known person in the business world who is an Aries with a Saturn-Mars conjunction in cancer, I think 1946 or somewhere in there. He had several companies that he started, grew too fast, bankrupted and fell apart, until he basically figured out his way of approaching things and built a company that became a multimillion dollar company in the area of medical foods of kind of products that were not like dietary supplements, but that were foods that were still basically medically oriented. And the reason I’m bringing him up is that he and I were once on our way to Vegas for a conference that we were attending and I said, “So, do you gamble?” And he looked at me and he goes, “Oh, absolutely. But not with money in Vegas, I gamble with real life situations.” And it was such an Aries thing to say because as you look at his life, that’s really what he did. Then you have real gamblers like people like Pete Rose who lost their place in being in the Baseball Hall of Fame regardless of what a great player he was, because he was found guilty of gambling. Aries, Aries ascendant.
CB: I love that you brought that up because… So, the risk taker but also the Daredevil.
RL: The daredevil. The Evil Knievel type person. I don’t even know his chart.
CB: That’s what I’m about to bring up because we actually do have a time chart and he’s one of my favorite ruler of the ascendant examples because Evil Knievel had Aquarius rising with Saturn as the traditional ruler of the ascendant in Aries in the third house of short distance travel. And of course, he famously would do these death-defying stunts where he would drive a motorcycle off a ramp and jump over a chasm or a bunch of cars or things like that. He’s the archetypal, at least in the late 20th century, daredevil figure that people think about when they think of that idea of risking your life to do a stunt or something like that.
RL: Yeah. Let’s see, you have his chart up, do you?
CB: Yeah, it’s right here. It’s Aquarius rising with Saturn at 13 Aries.
RL: Yeah, Saturn in Aries.
CB: In the third whole sign house. And what’s funny, and the other reason I use it, is that Mars the ruler of the third house is in Virgo in the eighth house of death and he was doing death-defying stunts and defying death constantly throughout his career.
RL: Which is kind of a Mars-Neptune thing of like this death isn’t real kind of a thing. And also the Saturn in Aries- I’m sorry, Chris, go ahead. Sorry. I had an Aries moment, I was interrupting you.
CB: No, no. I was just tacking on to what you said maybe like the illusion of it being a death-defying stunt with Mars there conjunct Neptune that maybe the illusion sometimes was more than the actual risk or something like that.
RL: Yeah. But even the Aries in the third house, which is arguably a motorcycle ride accelerating to a high speed and flying off into the air is a Gemini third house short trip, very short trip. But with Saturn there, it’s like, “What’s the boundary? Can I push this boundary a little further?” And Saturn in Aries, I think sometimes does that because they find that boundary and then they want to lean into it. They want to push it a little bit further.
CB: Yeah. And for those younger people who don’t really know who this is, just reading from the Wikipedia, it says he was an American stunt performer and entertainer. Over the course of his career, he attempted more than 75 ramp-to-ramp motorcycle jumps. He was inducted into the Motorcycle Hall of Fame in 1989 and died in 2007.
RL: Yeah, he did some crazy shit and I’m not sure he did this, but like taking a motorcycle jump across the Grand Canyon. Things that only stupid people would do. And the amazing thing is that he didn’t die from any of those things, he died from lung cancer or something.
CB: Yeah. That’s a great example just of the risk taker, the daredevil-
RL: Which is a form of gambling, it’s a form of gambling with one’s own body.
CB: Right. It can also be audacious, bold, plucky or intrepid or other keywords, sometimes spontaneous, like spontaneity can sometimes be an Aries thing.
RL: Well, and spontaneity is simply the idea of be here now. There’s a concept in Buddhism that has to do with enlightenment, which we kind of think of as, oh this wonderful state. In some forms of Vajrayana Buddhism, enlightenment is like a fierce warrior state. Because being in the present moment where there’s no memory of anything in the past and no anticipation of anything in the future, that’s really dangerous. They call it riding the razor’s edge and in a way, that sense of not only Ram Dass who was an Aries and wrote about the power or wrote about Be Here Now was a book that he wrote which became kind of keywords of the 1960s of the whole hippie revolution, Be Here Now. But then later on someone like Eckhart Tolle who wrote a book called The Power of Now, and again we’re talking about spontaneity happens when the focus and again, a keyword for Aries is focus. It’s slightly different than the word intention, which is a Leo word, because intention is focus that carries through, that holds its position, that fixed sign Leo holds on to that focus. Aries is about focusing right now. Which is spontaneous, it’s in the moment.
CB: The immediacy of the moment.
RL: Immediacy. The urgency of the moment. Yeah. And that sense of that not being a gentle place, because it’s very dangerous when you don’t have any anticipation of what’s going to happen in the next moment. It encourages risk taking.
CB: Right. I love that. Okay. So sometimes that can be- One of the ones I had a question mark around was like a trendsetter in terms of being the initial person to do something or being first to do something and taking that risk in the initial moment in the present.
RL: Yeah, I was the first astrologer. [laughs] That gets back to the Aries connection with now. You know, the Aries person is the first person on their block to have a hula hoop, a yo-yo, a skateboard… Whatever the current trend or fashion that’s coming in, Aries has this antenna that goes up and can read the zeitgeist of the moment. Again, I’m going to come back to that intuition word. They don’t think about it, they just intuitively go, “This is exciting. This is new. This is now.” And I think New is another keyword for Aries that we didn’t necessarily touch on. You know, the new year, the new look, the new… Anything that is new has that Arien sense. And so yeah, definitely trends are things that in the long run may be unimportant. Lady Gaga, perfect good example.
CB: Yeah, I was just thinking of Lady Gaga’s chart because she’s a Sun in Aries with the Sun right on the midheaven and also Venus in Aries in the 10th house. And especially early on, the way that she made a name for herself was with her fashion like really progressive or new or sometimes like avant-garde fashion stuff like wearing a meat suit or stuff like that to a fashion event and really pushing the boundaries of things by being like the first to do something.
RL: And look at that Venus in Aries trine Uranus, the person who is not only reflecting the modern trend but maybe even creating it, being slightly ahead of the curve with Uranus pulling it into the future. And yet the Saturn training the Midheaven and Sun, somehow she does it and she’s not flaky. I mean, there’s something about her that if someone else did it, you’d just write them off as a crazy person who’s doing weird shit. And yet when she does it, somehow it’s a lot more real and stable because she has the stuff, the Saturnian substance behind it to make it real.
CB: Yeah, that’s a funny distinction that you’re bringing up of Aries and being the first to do something versus Uranus being just kind of weird or that which is eccentric in some way and that there can be like overlap between those but there’s somewhat separate sort of ideas or archetypes.
RL: Yeah, they are. They work well together but they’re not the same thing. And it’s kind of why Aries and Aquarius are sextile by sign. There’s something about that that seems to take in the modern sense Uranus related to Aquarius, I know in a traditional sense not, but there’s that sense of them working together but there is a difference. They’re not the same thing. They’re not the same thing.
CB: Right. Let’s see. A couple of other significations that were written down were malcontent or braggart possibly sometimes.
RL: I think we touched on that a little bit. Well, a braggart’s like a bully. It’s an intellectual bully. It’s someone who is saying, “I’m better than. I’m bigger than.” There’s that energy that comes back to self that kind of is narcissistic. Not that all fire signs or all Aries are narcissists, but there’s that sense of making my reality more important than your reality.
CB: Yes. So braggart, the definition on Google says, “A person who boasts about their achievements or possessions.” So maybe the one, what’s the expression, like a sore winner [Rick laughs] like the person that wins but then rubs it in your face.
RL: I’ve never heard before, that’s a good line.
CB: Well, I’ve heard the word sore loser, everyone’s got that, but I don’t know if sore winner is the reverse of that or if there’s another phrase.
RL: I know, it’s great. I love it. I love it. It’s a good one.
CB: One who gloats over victory, it’s what the definition says. That’s pretty good. It’s not just the one who wants to be number one and achieves number one, but then once they get there sometimes maybe the shadow side can be to kick downwards and sort of rub it in the faces of those who weren’t able to reach that level.
RL: Yeah. Although this person has no planets in Aries, Donald Trump has Mars rising in fiery Leo and he does carry that kind of energy I think at times. Maybe at all times. [laughs]
CB: Yeah. Let’s see other things. Insistent bulldozer, simple sometimes, which I thought was an interesting- There can be a simplicity sometimes to Aries or a single-mindedness.
RL: Single mindedness. I would personally, not that I think simplicity– I think simplicity is a word that can be interpreted as a negative thing, but I think that that simplicity is more of a Torian energy. That Taurus keep it simple, you know, and yet the Aries can seem simple like a Taurus when it is highly concentrated or focused. When it is focused. I don’t think it’s being simple, I think it’s being focused. And maybe there’s a simplicity to it, maybe I’m just cutting words up too finally, but I like to reserve simple for that sense of simple pleasures, simple life, simple back to basics that we normally refer to as Torian not Arien energies. That’s just me.
CB: Basic. Basic is a good Taurus keyword especially in the modern slang usage of like, “That person’s really basic,” can be good Taurus keywords. I understand where you’re going, that makes sense there. Let’s see. Other things I wrote down; playful, lunging. Like, lunging at something is a funny Mars-
RL: That word lunging also comes back to- For Aries, there’s a delicate balance where assertion becomes aggression. The two words actually mean the same thing but there’s a different quality or a different level of amplitude. If you’re too assertive, you become aggressive. And if you’re too aggressive, that’s when you’re thrusting, when you’re penetrating someone else’s boundaries as an uninvited guest or a potentially uninvited guest. And so yeah, I think that those are good words for Aries, that it gets back to being pushy. It gets back to pushing yourself or someone else into a situation, goading someone to do something, is a way of pushing them rather than pushing yourself. But I think even the drive for self motivation for a highly focused reason can certainly also be an Aries type thing, that drive. I mean, it doesn’t have the discipline that Capricorn or Saturn does without a Capricorn or Saturnian influence. But boy, I think that it can be incredibly self motivating.
CB: Yeah, for sure. And I think so much of that and what you’re talking about has to do with the constant interplay between Mars and Venus and being the other side of the coin, for example, in like the domicile rulership scheme of Aries and all of its significations being on the other side of the coin or the opposite end of the Zodiac from Venus and Libra, or for another pair with the similar dynamics is Taurus, which is ruled by Venus, and Mars which is ruled- Or Scorpio which is ruled by Mars traditionally, and that you get some of those same dynamics. And that can also be sometimes the reason why Mars people can get themselves in trouble, it’s that delicate balance between the hunt and the chase and Mars often liking the hunt, or hunter being another Aries type archetype but that sometimes there can be a delicate balance between those two and if it gets upset and you go too far in one direction, it can be problematic or some difficult, tricky things can come up.
RL: Joe McCarthy, McCarthyism in the 1950s, is someone who had an Aries ascendant and Saturn there. And this was a guy who was quite formidable at his height of power and yet he abused it. He pushed. He was a politician that in some ways foreshadowed our current situation in politics where people can be less politically motivated and more power pushy motivated. And he certainly did that. He’s a good example of that bully. People did not want to stand up to him and did not want to face him.
CB: Right. So for those who are not familiar with this, he was the one that started the Red Panic or the Red Scare where he was a politician in US that was accusing people of being communist or being anti-American and started a witch hunt basically for that, which led to attacking and defaming and persecuting a lot of people.
RL: Yes, yes. Yeah, exactly. Well said. Another person who’s like that but wears it so differently that he not only gets away with it, it in some ways makes him endearing to us, is Aries David Letterman, who also can not so much bully but be that in your face. I think David Letterman might have been the first person on TV to actually do this to the camera and come right in and be in your face, in your face. I think I’ve seen him do that with guests where he got on to something and it was like you couldn’t settle him down, he would keep coming back around to that concept again and again and again. Then he had Sun and Mars in Aries, it’s an untimed birth but we do know that the Sun was obviously exalted in Mars and its domicile and so it’s another interesting one. But unlike McCarthy, he did it in a way that was funny and most often he got away with it.
CB: Yeah, I was more of a– at least in the 90s– I came in late so I didn’t see the earlier part of Letterman’s career but in the 90s I would always watch Leno mainly. I was more of a Leno guy but Letterman always seemed like he had this edge to him. A lot of his conversation and his jokes and stuff had this needling or this edge to them, which was subtle but it was there in terms of his style of interaction with guests and stuff.
RL: And I think as a youth in his earlier shows, it was much more predominant. He was much more a caricature of himself in his earlier years than he was when he settled into his role as as established.
CB: Yeah, that makes sense. It’s funny as it brings up the other guy, my more favorite of the late night people in my late 90s and 2000s was Conan O’Brien who was a Sun in Aries and Jupiter in Aries-
RL: -with flaming red hair. [laughs]
CB: Right. And was much more of the Jupiterian type version of that Aries archetype where it was much more good-natured, but also breaking new ground and intrepid. He was kind of like off on his own in this late show that was super late at night and he could just do whatever he want wanted. And so they would try new things and sometimes it would be kind of wacky and kind of zany, but it was also always in more of a good humor or good fun type thing.
RL: He had this self-deprecating thing that he really used quite well to disarm people against the feeling like they were being bullied in some way.
CB: Yeah, that’s a really good point. His jokes were never at the expense of somebody else, necessarily.
RL: They were often at the expense of himself. I mean, he was someone who really did that. You would never see a Johnny Carson or a Jay Leno do that in the way that he did.
CB: That’s really funny because maybe his Mars is actually placed in Leo in the 12th house and it’s funny because the 12th house is traditionally said to be the place of self undoing, which is like such a weird and sometimes abstract signification that I would read books early on and wonder what that even meant, practically speaking. But it would be funny if that self-deprecation was coming from that Mars in the 12th house placement.
RL: Yeah, interesting. Although I have to say that I’ve given that concept a lot of thought over the years and I find it interesting that historically, the 12th house being so difficult because it is the house of our self undoing. And in modern times, we look at the 12th house often as being the place of spiritual connection. And you look at some of the modern, religious and/or spiritual practices, and they’re practices of undoing the self. [laughs] That self undoing can happen either to someone who is repressed or unaware of their own stuff and they end up in an institution, a hospital, a jail, whatever, those are all forms of self undoing. Or you can look at the person who in their early teenage years, begins fasting meditation and processes of yoga and awareness like that. And those are all undoing the ego, self-undoing conscious or unconscious. Interesting.
CB: Yeah, that makes a lot of sense. All right, I’m looking through our significations because it’s all a jumble and we’ve kind of jumped around so I’m trying to see if there’s any-
RL: Like an Aries should. I mean, we had a plan and I wouldn’t say we disregarded it but we certainly we attacked it. A good Aries word, attack. A good Aries word. We attacked it in a way that we took whatever the most direct route was from wherever we were at each moment.
CB: Yeah. Ready, fire, aim. [crosstalk] very beginning and that’s kind of how we wanted to set this up because this is the first show and I wasn’t fully sure about a structure, but I realized we just needed to do it and then see how it went and we would find the structure along the way. That’s very much in keeping with Aries season and the-
RL: And Chris, while we’re looking for the next words in the spirit of just ready, fire, aim, there are a couple of pieces that I would love to read that I think are interesting because they take a different approach but they’re both short. One of them is from one of my favourite books by Ronald Davison, a British astrologer, was president of the Lodge, developed what we call relationship charts where we use midpoint charts, a brilliant astrologer. But this book which is out of print and sometimes very expensive and difficult to find
CB: Which is titled Astrology?
RL: Just titled Astrology.
CB: Okay, Astrology by Ronald C Davidson.
RL: Yeah. And in it, he traces through the cycle of the Zodiac in a very interesting way and he says, “Let us now trace the cycle of experience as it is depicted in the Zodiac so we can get a better idea of the 12 phases of manifestation with which we identify ourselves according to the nature of our horoscope. The Cardinal fire sign Aries represents the first cause, the life principle, pure Spirit, God the Creator, the resurrection, out rushing force whose impetus is irresistible.” And I would also add unrepressible or irrepressible, whatever that word would be. “Here, the accent is on unfettered activity, primitive self expression, the joy of being. Those who identify themselves largely with Aries therefore see themselves as leaders and pioneers. They seek activity, often an adventurous kind, and manage to pack more experience into one lifetime than natives of some of the other signs might do in two or three.” Just a short little blurb, it doesn’t say anything that we haven’t touched on in some way but it kind of puts it together. And also the fact that he relates this to the expression of unconscious urge and godhood… Here’s a good word we didn’t touch on and is a good Aries word, and that is enthusiasm, excitement. When an Aries gets charged up about something, it becomes enthused. And the word enthusiasm comes from the Greek entheos, which is ‘with God’. And when we’re enthused, there’s no separation between the divine that’s coming in and our expression. It’s like the artist who gets out of the way [laughs] to do what his/her or their art is. It’s not Rick Levine doing this, it’s something coming through me and that is very much an Aries kind of a thing entheos, ‘with God’ enthusiasm.
CB: Yeah, Aries are definitely very high energy. That’s a good phrase for Aries.
RL: Well, high energy when they can be because obviously, you know, for every high energy enthused Aries there is, there’s another Aries who can be repressed or suppressed and therefore not in touch with that energy. Remember we’re talking archetypes with spectrum so we can be on either side of that spectrum.
CB: Yeah, for sure. So energetic, also short bursts of energy, when you were talking and reading that quote it made me think of the Big Bang and just that initial, you know, things starting from a single point and then just exploding and suddenly the universe is created in that initial explosion, or even just the initial spark of the flame of a candle when it first starts or something like that.
RL: I’ve been accused of being a big bang. [laughs] “Where’d he go? What happened?” The other thing that I wanted to read, and we mentioned her-
CB: Hold on, can I make a segue?
RL: Oh, please go ahead. Go. Go. Go.
CB: [crosstalk] Aries is a very passionate, passionate sign and I don’t know if that’s something we’ve left out so far, you know, the passion of not just Mars but also that interplay between Mars and Venus a little bit.
RL: Yeah. Well, it’s interesting that Venus is debilitated in Aries. And my Venus is very close conjoined to Mars in Aries, and I intellectually can read and see what those things mean but I really like my Venus in Aries, because I know what I like and what I don’t like instantaneously. And also, I am totally willing to change my mind when I learn something about what I either liked or didn’t like at first, but there’s that sense of Venus in Aries and Venus and Mars working together. We’re talking martial arts. The word martial arts in some ways is Mars and Venus. And we forget that although we think of martial arts as physical fighting, there’s also mental martial arts. There’s again that idea of debate or of chess as a type of martial art, if you will. And so we can assert ourselves in a beautiful manner, is as I guess where I was going Mars-Venus.
CB: Yeah, that makes a lot of sense. And also there’s a physicality to Mars signs and to some extent Venus signs, and there’s the give and the take, and that’s the interplay between Mars and Venus and the old, you know, philosophical going back to the early Western philosophical Greek tradition of love versus hate as being these two polar dynamics that are opposites or that which, you know, brings something closer versus that which pushes something away. But there’s this physicality to Mars and to some extent Venus and maybe that’s what connects some extent to the notion of passion, being passionate, or even the sort of athleticism involved in sometimes like love making or having sex.
RL: Can we use the word adrenaline?
CB: Adrenaline? Okay.
RL: Again, we come back to red, you know? It’s the difference between animal and vegetable. It’s been said, and I think that part of the ancient tradition, that Mars ruled the animal kingdom and Venus ruled the vegetable kingdom I like to call it queendom. But that the difference between animals and vegetables largely is the difference between haemoglobin and chlorophyll. Haemoglobin and chlorophyll actually structurally are very similar except haemoglobin has iron at a place in its structure, where in chlorophyll, it’s copper and manganese. Which is why chlorophyll is green, you know, we think oxidated copper is green. Chlorophyll being green and– where did I go– haemoglobin being red. The adrenaline releazes something into our bloodstream that makes us more passionate. You know, whether we love or hate, whether we’re fight flight or… [laughs] Still, there’s that sense of in the moment where it becomes more excited, excitable, and certainly passionate.
CB: Yeah, and you left out a word there but I think it’s a very important word because we covered this is one of our core words, one of our best words that we could come up in the Mars episode that I did last summer that was very appropriate is the word ‘fuck’ as a Mars word.
RL: I just dropped it out out of respect for someone who might care, I’m not adverse to using it. Flight, fight, or fuck.
CB: Yeah, and I appreciate that. And I apologise to the audience members that are ready for that, but I want to be able to have that type of discussions where we can speak openly and freely when we’re talking about archetypes and things like that. But I think that then also becomes a very important Mars in Aries word and signification in the way that it can be used as multifaceted different thing that can be positive or negative depending on the context.
RL: Right. And again in the traditional use of that word, we come back to that sense of Aries and Mars as penetrator, as assertor or aggressor whether there was an invitation or not.
CB: Right. Yeah, and that being a necessary process but a double-edged sword in terms of that it can go either way. And even other uses of it metaphorically, like telling somebody to fuck off is like a Martian and an Aries type thing of telling somebody to go away or get lost or something is sort of pushing something away or pushing something outward.
RL: Yeah. It reminded me when I worked for years with an astrologer who’s now passed, I know you knew Jeff Jawer, and some of the other people here might. Jeff passed away about five/six years ago. We taught a lot together around the world and Jeff used to say to me, he goes, “I’ve never seen anyone who is so able to dismiss someone in a way where the person doesn’t mind or doesn’t fight back.” You know? It’s the fuck off. And Jeff would say that that was a function of Mars in Aries because I had– and I’ve never even noticed this, I’m not even saying that this is true. But I’m saying Jeff would say this often that I had the ability to define a boundary. “Nope, we’re not going there.” Or “Nope, not now.” Or “You need to be quiet if you’re going to stay in this class,” or whatever it is that is basically a fuck off kind of have a saying, but it’s about establishing boundaries. And that’s what Mars in anger has a very important purpose and when used constructively, what its purpose is is to create a boundary. You know, we think of Saturn is the planet of boundary but Saturn and Mars together really do that in different ways.
CB: Yeah, because it’s like this energy that extends outwards and pushes things away from it if necessary, which can sometimes be a necessary process but also brings up that necessary process of setting boundaries, but also Mars sometimes having this tendency and Aries having this tendency to transgress boundaries. That can be a good thing or a bad thing depending on the context of the scenario.
RL: Yeah, exactly.
CB: What was the- Before I interrupted you for that whole segment, you were gonna read another passage from another book?
RL: Yeah. I was someone who actually was an Aries with Venus conjunct her Sun and Chiron in Aries also. This particular person had Mars rising in Gemini, and I’m speaking of Linda Goodman who may have been the most popular astrologer who ever lived, I’m not really sure.
CB: I think she’s actually… There was a later birth time that was found, she’s actually an Aries rising.
CB: An Aries rising? Oh, okay. I don’t doubt it. Regardless, she certainly was a Sun sign Aries born April 9th, 1925. And she wrote a book on Sun signs called Linda Goodman’s Sun Signs that was one of the best selling books of all times, selling enough copies that it warranted her being the first author to command a seven-figure advance for her subsequent book. But in her Sun Sign astrology book, she has How to Recognize an Aries. And she was rather witchy in her writing, in her ability to simplify and make things be real or make things seem real. And she wrote this. There’s a leading little piece here that she wrote, she wrote a lot of poetry and this says, “They would not remember the simple rules their friends had taught them: such as that a red hot poker will burn you if you hold it too long;and that, if you cut your finger very deeply with a knife, it usually bleeds.” It’s an interesting take because it’s that part of Aries that has to do with that risk taker and it’s rebelliousness which we didn’t really talk about it as radical or rebellious. Well, we did in a sense of being feisty and pushing back. But she goes on to say, “Have you recently met an unusually friendly person with a forceful manner, a firm handclasp and an instant smile? Get ready for a dizzy dash around the mulberry bush. You’ve probably just been adopted by an Aries. Especially if you found it a little tough to take the lead in. the conversation.
Is he committed to some idealistic cause and angrily defending the underdog? That figures. Male or female, these people will fight what they feel is an injustice on the spot, and they’re not bashful about voicing their opinions. The ram will talk back to a traffic cop or an armed gangster with equal vigor, if either one happens to annoy him. Of course he may regret it later, but caution won’t concern him in the heat of the moment. Aries people come straight to the point, with no shilly-shallying.” It goes on, but it kind of sets the stage in a way that I think few people do in their writing for describing that energy. So I wanted to share that.
CB: Yeah, I love that. And I love that Linda Goodman had not just the Sun and Venus in Aries but possibly the ascendant, and I’ve used this as an example of the ruler of that ascendant Mars was placed in Gemini in the third house and she just had this amazing way with words and amazing way to write, and became hugely successful as an astrologer. It was probably the biggest selling astrology book ever. Even though astrology has been going on for thousands of years, I don’t know if, you know, it’s sort of between her and Ptolemy in terms of book sales but her book was printed and sold millions and millions of times that she became easily just one of the most successful astrology writers ever.
RL: Yeah, yeah.
CB: Yeah, that’s really, really good. All right, going back to my outline. One thing when you were reading that quote from her that made me realize that we didn’t dwell on very much is just- We talked about the difference between, and we’ve come back to a few times the difference between Aries and Scorpio a few times, but one of the major things here just in terms of the difference between– and we don’t have to get into a whole discussion about you know, there’s a lot of talk recently about whether the traditional designations of like masculine and feminine to the signs for the even an odd signs are still appropriate or whether that’s too tied in with complicated issues of gender and other astrologers. For example, Chani Nicholas prefers to use diurnal signs for the odd signs and nocturnal signs for the even signs which is also a traditional designation, and other astrologers Austin Coppock prefers to use Yin and Yang from the Chinese philosophical tradition. But one of the things regardless of what you use, I think there’s a notion in modern psychology of like extraversion versus introversion. And I think we could say pretty easily with a lot of the keywords we’ve been using here so far that Aries tends to be the more extroverted sign whereas let’s say by contrast, Scorpio might be a more introverted sign or expression of the Mars archetype.
RL: Yeah, I think that you just stated it well and maybe understated it. Because if we go back to the original picture of the glyph of Aries, how can it be introverted if the energy is gushing forth out of nothingness? In a way, when people ask me why I’m an astrologer or why I became interested in astrology, for years my answer was, “My concern is how does nothing become something.” Which is an Aries concern, because it’s that first moment of spring and yet from the moment of Scorpio to the moment of Aries, meaning from the time when the Sun in the northern hemisphere goes into Scorpio, when those final pretty leaves in Libra turn brown and then are cut off from the life of the tree and they fall to the ground and it looks like death. It looks like there’s nothing there in Scorpio and through the Sagittarius, Capricorn, Aquarius, and Pisces. And yet in Pisces, something happens and that energy starts wiggling and jiggling on the inside, and an Aries all of a sudden there’s new, there’s new growth again! And it’s that outrushing of energy that has pulled in in maximum force in Scorpio that then in Aries comes back out. And so this idea that you just said is, like I said, I think you understated it because it is so key to understanding the cycle of the Zodiac, that Aries couldn’t be anything other than extroverted or intended towards push the energy outward whereas Scorpio couldn’t be anything but pulling that energy inward. That’s the nature of what’s going on in each part of the cycle… In those two parts of the cycle. [laughs]
CB: Yeah, I like that. I’m just trying to look up definitions to get a quality definition but one of the definitions from Cambridge dictionary of extraversion just says “The quality of being energetic and not shy, and enjoying being with other people,” which kind of actually isn’t a great definition and understates. It’s a little bit, but let’s say you’re in a social situation, the person that thrusts themselves into the social situation and will go up and, you know, Linda Goodman was talking about shakes the hands of new people and will initiate first contact with somebody or will be the one to lead or set up a group of friends to go on an outing and be the one that sets that up, versus the person that maybe hangs back or isn’t as comfortable walking up to a stranger or taking the lead in something or what have you.
RL: I agree with all of that. However, there is also that picture that I described earlier of the mature lone Aries, you know, that Aries who’s willing to go off and be a pioneer and go off for four or five months and be by themselves in the wilderness, or to be an intellectual pioneer and spend decades in places that no one else can follow or understand. There is that sense of of aloneness that an Aries can over time choose, and yet what you say is still true.
CB: Yeah, that’s a good point, the solo tendencies or the single tendencies that we were talking about a little bit earlier?
RL: Yeah, yeah. Again, my Ariesness I love the idea of being in relationship, I love the idea of travelling with someone who you’re close to or in love with, and yet I also have learned to love travelling alone because when I travel alone, I have experiences that I would not have otherwise. And I’m not saying that one completely supplants the other, but there are two different ways of approaching things and in my youth the idea of travelling alone would have been just awful. And yet as I’ve– let’s not used the word aged, let’s say matured– I find that I’ve become more of a hermit or more of aloof from the humdrum noise, might call it third house noise even. But still when I’m around people, then I like to reengage. So there’s both facets there. This just spoken from a personal point of view.
RL: Yeah, and I think that’s really important for all the signs just the notion that people experience different parts of it at different stages in their life. Different people that you might be around might activate certain things in terms of your chart in different ways. I mean, for you, of course, I always think of your huge 11th house Aries stellium and how you had worked with a friend for a number of years with Jeff Jawer and you two were known together. I always laugh, and I’ve told this story about walking into Barnes & Noble and there was a big cardboard cutout of both of you [Rick laughs] when you were both writing this yearly planner for Barnes & Noble which was a really big deal at the time, but just that connection with a friend at the time and doing that work together.
CB: Well, yeah. And by the way, that cut out, I wish I had one of those.
CB: I know, me too. If I ever find one, that’s going to be behind me in every podcast episode.
RL: But it was very strange walking into a Barnes & Noble in New York City and seeing Jeff and I life-size, you know, very weird. But I must say that that 11th house stellium as a younger person, I was the person who would have told you and meant it. But I would be very happy living at conferences, just being– and as you may know and some people may know, until the mid late 90s, I had a very significant career also in organizing in the natural foods, health food and dietary supplement world. So there were years when I would go to two or three or four conferences a month! And there were times when I thought, “Maybe I don’t even need a home, I just can go from conference to conference.” It’s such an 11th house thing of being in a network of friends and just waking up and being in that group. And yet I have a Cancer Moon that over the years has become more predominant and I really like my time alone.
CB: Yeah. I remember that’s how we first became friends because you would come hang out at the Kepler College symposiums when all the Kepler students would fly out for a week in the middle of the semester for a week of lectures. And then after the lectures were over at night everyone would hang out really late in the lounge and talk astrology and you and I would end up just late at night saying up talking about different astrology topics during those trips. That was how I first met you.
RL: And often in conferences, I was the last person to leave a conversation. That’s where my Aries lack of staying power was not obvious, I would be the person who would be still going when everyone else was going to sleep.
CB: Yeah. And then also just looking at the chart again with Gemini rising and Mercury in Aries applying to Mars, one of the other things that I thought was interesting about that time period is for a number of years, you wrote daily horoscopes and that was the one thing that would drag you away from the social setting and the social group. You were like, “I got work to do.” And you would-
RL: Well, except often at two or three in the morning, I would then go back to my room and write. And for the record, I’m still writing a daily. I’ve been writing an astrological daily since the New Moon in Aquarius in 2002. So we’re looking at 21 years, and although I don’t write anything for each of the 12 signs as I did for 17-18 of those years, these days I’m writing more of what I call a daily astrological reflection of sorts. That’s available on Facebook and or Instagram, @ricklevineastrologer in both places.
CB: Yeah, and I love that because it just shows it’s shorter form content but it’s showing you having long-term energy to do that and to do it every day and to write something that’s really powerful, though concise and relatively short, but it carrying like a puncher or carrying a kick to it.
CB: Here’s something else that I’ve noticed about myself. It’s not something that I often talk about but when you look at my writing career, I’ve probably written as many words, more words but as many words as pretty much anybody out there. I mean, for the eight years that Jeff and I co-authored the annual astrology guides for Barnes & Noble those books were 150,000 words long. And although we co-authored them, we each in effect wrote every word. I mean, we detailed everything regardless of who originated the text. On top of that, for those years and for 17-18 years before and after, I was writing approximately 1200-1300 words a day, seven days a week. And yet when you look at my writing, it’s almost all like Tibetan sand paintings, which is an absolute Aries kind of a thing because with a Tibetan sand painting, you put all your concentration and all your focus on making this incredible thing of beauty and then once it’s done, you rake is gone. And unlike many other writers, my best work has a shelflife of three minutes, five minutes, 10 minutes. And so my legacy as an Aries, Lao Tzu in Dao De Jing, Lao Tzu said that the wise and realized person leaves no trace. Well, I hope I don’t leave no trace. But unlike other astrologers who have written as many words or half as many words as I have, and wrote them in books that leave legacies, my work largely as a stellium in Aries largely is here and gone. Here and gone. Here and gone. There is no staying power to a daily column.
CB: Yeah, I love that and just the impermanence of-
RL: Impermanence, good. Another good Aries word. Yeah, impermanence.
CB: Yeah, of writing either a daily horoscope or a yearly horoscope because once that year is over, it’s something that people don’t go back to for the most part to read again. It’s just, it was powerful and impactful in that moment and it had real importance in the immediacy. Again, going back to that notion of time and immediacy and being here and being now in the moment. And that was where its power was the most impactful. Yeah, but that still ends up moving things, that still ends up being impactful and impacting things because it gets the ball rolling in the moment, even if it’s not something that continues to linger around necessarily as a permanent fixture in your consciousness forever, like the initial push that it had of moving the boulder and getting it rolling down the hill. Sometimes that can make a huge difference in people’s lives.
RL: Yeah. I sometimes call the Aries the firestarter. Because that’s what it does. It likes to get the ball rolling. It likes to prime the pump, give it one push, and then let someone else take over the daily routine of pumping the water.
CB: Yeah. That brings up some terms I want to make sure we mention that I really love as Mars terms and they get underused but peppery, spicy, heating, fiery, and incendiary. Just the notion of a pepper.
RL: Those are all good. Those are all really good words all on the same spectrum. Yeah. I’m sorry, go ahead. Yeah.
CB: Well, I’m just thinking about like a pepper and how sometimes you need that to add some spice to something, you know? A little bit of pepper can really spice up a dish and make it interesting and make it a little, bring the heat up, make it a little hotter. But when done right, it’s like not too hot and it’s just the perfect amount of heat that’s added to something or pepperiness or spiciness. Whereas on the other hand sometimes if you just eat a ghost pepper, you’re gonna have a bad night because suddenly the heat explodes in your mouth and it’s too much heat and it’s too intense and it’s harmful or not experienced as a positive thing. So there’s again, just both sides of that double-edged sword or that spectrum of Mars in Aries where it can go either way.
CB: Yeah, good point. Not switching completely but I noticed in your notes you had something that I didn’t want to forget to talk about and I did until I just saw it. You have Zoller machine gun vs sniper rifle. If you would share with us what you mean by that, that will lead into what I wanted to say and forgot.
CB: Okay, so I’ve told this anecdote many times on the podcast but I want to tell it again because not everyone has heard it and because it’s appropriate here. The late Robert Zoller who died a few years ago was an astrologer, he was one of the first astrologers who really went back and started doing traditional mediaeval-style astrology based on the work of Guido Bonatti and other astrologers like that. For about a year I lived with him in the same house when I was living at Project Hindsight around 2007 and what’s funny ironically, he was a great astrologer and made a number of predictions that were very successful and did a lot of important work. But I always laughed-
RL: Including the bombing of the World Trade Tower. He’s the one that went on record with very precise information around that prior to it happening.
CB: Yeah, he was one of the astrologers that got the closest of anyone maybe to predicting 9/11 just based on some of the statements he made based on traditional mundane astrology and some eclipses that happened across the East Coast in like 1999 and 2000. But despite all of that, like very exalted prediction and mundane stuff, one of the most insightful things he ever said to me one day is he said, “The difference between Aries and Scorpio is that Aries is like a machine gun that just shoots a bunch of bullets indiscriminately, and Mars in Scorpio is like a sniper rifle that just shoots one shot that’s on the target and that’s it.” It was funny because that’s one of the most striking analogies or metaphors that he ever shared with me that I always think back to some times when I try to think of the difference between Aries versus Scorpio.
RL: Yeah, I think that’s a good one. And it gets back to the, although they’re slightly different metaphors, what I said earlier that if an Aries doesn’t win on that first volley of fire, the Scorpio will always win in the long run. But what I was thinking when I saw that– and that’s a great image, I’ll remember that image– what I was thinking is that Mercury, I have mercury in Aries. And I’ve been accused of what I’m going to describe, and that is, when I get going and I’m talking on a topic, my words can come out so fast that there’s no room for me to breathe, there’s no room for you to understand quite what it was that I said because I’m already talking about something new and you can’t go back and think about what I said, and the words come out like a machine gun fast and fast and fast. And then I go [takes deep breathe] and you know, that can be 10 or 15 minutes. It’s that same energy of Aries machine gun fire. It’s just a rapid- It’s a spray that is not basically going from here to there. And sometimes when I’m in that mode, I’ll get three quarters of the way through it and I’ll stop and I’ll go, “Where was I going with this?” I totally lose the directionality because I’m just shooting with whatever comes next in my mind and then I have to pull back and re-remember and then go back into that Scorpio mode of finding that target and bringing it to conclusion.
CB: Right. Yeah, that makes a lot of sense. One last thing that somebody mentioned and I wasn’t sure if it’s true and I was trying to think about it, but they said ‘funny’. In Twitter, a few people said that Aries are funny and I was trying to reflect on that if that was true and think of different Aries comedians. We’ve talked about a few, of course, like David Letterman or Conan O’Brien but-
RL: Charlie Chaplin I think was an Aries, wasn’t he?
CB: Okay, yeah. But is it a funny sign or is it a certain type of comedy? I mean, there might be maybe the boldness of because I often think of comedians as like a Mercurial type thing. The talking and the being witty and coming up with jokes or little short bits, but there may be something to the Aries thing that would be very useful or fitting or appropriate because Aries not being afraid to say something that might be offensive to somebody or, you know, The Roast version of comedians where you sort of make fun of like two comedians get up and they roast each other and they make fun of each other by saying cutting or biting things. That could definitely be a Martian or an Aries type thing. Or even just having the courage to get up on a stage and do stand-up comedy requires a certain amount of boldness and courage to get up there and just fail but to keep trying.
RL: Yeah. As you were talking, I don’t have her chart and I don’t know what her stuff was but Dorothy Parker once said, “You can fake sincerity but you can’t fake wit.” Here’s where I think that comes from, and I wouldn’t necessarily say that Aries are necessarily humorous or funny although there seem to be a bunch of them that are lingering in the back of my mind that I’m only 80% sure that some of them are Aries or have Aries planets. But Freud wrote a book that is not widely known, and it’s a book called Wit and The Unconscious. And basically in it he makes the case that humour comes from a place where that which cannot be spoken, that which cannot be said, that which is either repressed– that means we bury it and we don’t know we buried it– or suppressed, which means we buried it and we know we buried it. In either case, when those things come out into the open that somehow it’s acceptable for them to come out in a humor form where it’s not acceptable for them to come out just sedating them. And so the Aries who’s in the moment and willing to take those risks, and in some ways we get back to that dance between the conscious and the unconscious that I talked about earlier how Aries really is unconsciousness, because everything that is included in the Aries, you know, the idea that the whole universe is part of me and therefore everything is me. I am the centre of it because it is all within me. And because of that, the Aries has that tendency to be able to release those socially inappropriate zingers that are of the moment that come out through humour as kind of a safe way for them to express. It’s a thought. I agree with you, I still think that Mercury is there, that Mercury is important, but then again if you are a Sun in Aries, chances are you have Mercury in Aries, too.
CB: Yeah, for sure. And there’s probably different types of comedy and different approaches to comedy so it’s kind of hard to pin down to one thing. That’s something we didn’t get into too much here but it’s something I want to maybe come back to at different points in this series, which is just sometimes there isn’t usually one sign that only does something but sometimes you can kind of rank or do a hierarchy of if you have a keyword which sign comes to mind first for that, and then what’s the second and third and fourth to your sign for that. So sometimes you can do that in grouping the cardinal signs. Like, what would Aries be the top? Or if you group the fire signs which are Aries, Leo, and Sagittarius, what would be the top ranking thing for Aries for example? Like maybe competitiveness, if you were to ask maybe all three of the fire signs might be competitive on some level, but if you had to rank which one was the most competitive, maybe Aries would be it?
RL: Yeah, interesting. And I think that may be true. I don’t know, I can think of a lot of Sagittarians who are pretty funny and Leos too. Is it a fiery thing? I don’t know.
CB: Sometimes all three of the fire signs can be accused of having an ego type thing in different versions of that that manifest in those three signs. We’ve talked a lot about the single-mindedness and wanting to be a winner of Aries, but Leo on the other hand it can be more of a thing of wanting to be seen and wanting to shine. And that being sort of where that’s coming from in some way. Or Jupiter sometimes wanting to not necessarily be the centre of attention, but wanting to be seen as knowledgeable or wise or something like that.
RL: Yeah, I agree with all of that. You talk about other types of humour. I’ve seen the people who do physical humour often have Mars-Uranus connections, for example, regardless of their sign. And so yeah, I think it’s more complicated than Aries are funny, although I’d like to think sometimes I’m funny. I think that sometimes I’m really funny and no one else gets the joke I just told. [laughs]
CB: Right. All right. There’s one last thing I just remembered. There was this great thing posted in The Astrology Podcast, the private Facebook Group for patrons of the podcast, by a patron named Chloe Lawson who posted– she just done this illustration for Aries to sort of commemorate Aries season and it had a bunch of keywords for Aries that she wrote out. And this was before I was going to do this episode but I asked if I could use this and she said that would be okay, so she sent me the picture. It’s a drawing for those just listening to the audio version but it says, “Aries, ruled by Mars, exalted, Sun, Cardinal, fire, ram, frictions, spark, ignite, radiance, burning, bright, hot, flare up, ignition, now, sprint, impatience, just fucking do it, spontaneous, boldness, ego, courage, strik, headbutt, startup, inspiration, fury, frenzy, wild, frantic, fight, champion, drive, take a risk, throw caution to the wind, independent, fast, badass, content…” What am I missing? “Content, independent-
RL: I think it’s badass-
CB: No, contentious. Contentious. Yeah. I think and then burn or burn out. “Excess, selfish, I am, energy, quick, passionate, fearless, confident, decisive, red, first, exciting, impulsive, the head, new changes, and adventure.” And that gets to a lot of, you know, we talked about a lot of those keywords but it just nicely kind of summarises or wraps up a bunch of major things that we talked about here.
RL: Yes. And as you said a couple of those keywords, I was reminded of and I don’t have his chart right in front of me but you said “I am” and I began to think of “I think, therefore I am.” And René Descartes being, I think he had like six planets in Aries if I’m not mistaken. A crazy number. I don’t know if you have his chart. I’m not on my laptop where I have it. I mean I’m not on my desktop. But that whole sense of “I am. I am the centre. I think, therefore I am.” There we go. Look at that Sun node, Uranus, Jupiter, Pluto and Mercury. 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 planets plus the node in Aries, I think therefore I am, that’s a pretty powerful statement I think. And those Aries planets trine Neptune.
CB: I love that, that’s beautiful. And then Mars is in Gemini and it’s in a mutual reception with Mercury.
RL: Yeah. I think, therefore I am. You heard about the story of Descartes walks into the bar and the bartender says, “Can I help you?” And he goes, “I think not.” And he disappeared. [laughs]
CB: Nice. All right. Are there any major things that we’re forgetting? Obviously, it’s way too broad. We are shooting for two hours, we’ve overshot that slightly but we’ve covered a lot. But are there any major things we’re going to kick ourselves for not mentioning?
RL: The answer is yes, and we don’t know what they are. [laughs] I can’t think of anything. It’s been a lot of fun and I know that once we get off, I’m gonna go, “Oh, I forgot to talk about…” You know? But that’s the way it is.
RL: Yeah. Well, maybe people can help us out by writing in the YouTube comments below this video on the YouTube video versions some of their significations or keywords for Aries and if there’s any major ones we left out, and then we can have a whole directory of those there. I’ll also link to the Twitter thread where people can read other comments and other significations that people gave. Also, shoutout to Nick Dagan Best who helped with some of the research for some of the chart examples we used in this episode, which was super helpful. And you, I wanted to mention your YouTube channel because you are just killing it when it comes to YouTube at this point and just regularly releasing videos and forecasts and have just this thriving and really great resource for people for regular daily and weekly astrology stuff at this point, right?
RL: Yeah, it’s actually on YouTube. It’s more monthly and semi monthly. The one thing that is available for everyone is my monthly forecasts similar to what you do but different. I always find it interesting when I watch yours and see how some of the things we both talk about are so exact similar, and then there are things where we go in very, very different directions and I like that. But the freebie thing is my monthly which is about an hour long, it’s posted on the first of every month. There are a number of other- I’m sorry, go ahead.
CB: And that’s at youtube.com/ricklevine?
RL: Yeah. And then there are other things that I have available to my patrons at patreon.com/ricklevine. You can find more about some of that stuff.
CB: Cool, patreon.com/ricklevine, there it is with your different tiers. And you do a bunch of different bonuses and other offerings including meetups and actually are doing Zoom sessions where you go over charts and different things like that.
RL: Yeah, I have a monthly chart interpretation class that we do live interpretations of people in the class where I am talking to like you as if I was doing your chart, but there will be the people out there on the webinar. And so I’m doing your chart and telling people out there why I’m talking about certain things, and then asking you to respond and tell us what the backstory is. And that kind of work is so, you know, that’s work that we couldn’t have done 20 or 30 years ago because there was no way to do- First of all, there was no way to gather the audiences from all around the world like on Zoom. Secondly, to be able to just take someone’s chart and put it up and look at it as everyone else is looking at it in that moment is such a luxury that we have with computers that we just forget. And that’s something that you and I talked about at length in the ISAR talk that we did for the Astrology Day programme for that symposium back on Astrology Day, which is the vernal equinox every year. But we just forget how different it is being an astrologer and studying astrology is today compared to what it was 40 years ago.
CB: Yeah, and I released that as episode 344 of The Astrology Podcast titled The Future Trajectory of Astrology, that talk we just did for International Astrology Day. And I think what we said is, or what I said, I say it all the time is there’s literally been no better time ever in the history of the world to be an astrologer than right now in terms of all the different resources and things that are available to people and that we can do, that it’s really great time to be practicing into this.
RL: Totally agree. Totally agree.
CB: Yeah. All right. Well, thanks a lot for joining me for this and being the first to help me initiate and launch this new series on the 12 signs of the zodiac today.
RL: Being in Aries, I could not have done any other than the first one.
CB: Right. Sometimes you’ve just got to do-
RL: Gotta do what you got to do.
RL: Yeah. Thank you very much for having this, and for doing what you do for all of us.
CB: Yeah, well this is a great start and now I’m even more excited. With any luck, I’m going to do one of these each month over the course of the next 12 months and go through each of the signs of the zodiac. And we should have a pretty good resource by the end of that for all 12 signs.
CB: Cool. All right. Well, thanks for joining me today. Thanks, everyone, for watching or listening to this episode of The Astrology Podcast. I’ll put a link to Rick’s website and YouTube channel just below the description in this video or on The Astrology Podcast website, so please be sure to check it out. Thanks a lot for watching, and we’ll see you again next time.
Special thanks to all the patrons that supported the production of this episode of the podcast through our page on patreon.com. In particular, thanks to the patrons on our producers’ tier including Thomas Miller, Catherine Conroy, Kristi Moe, Ariana Amour, Mandi Rae, Angelic Nambo, Sumo Coppock, Issah Sabah, Jake Otero, Morgan MacKenzie, and Kristin Otero. If you like the work that I’m doing here on the podcast and you would like to find a way to support it then please consider becoming a patron through my page on patreon.com and in exchange you’ll get access to bonus content such as early access to new episodes, the ability to attend the live recording of the month ahead forecast each month, access to a private monthly auspicious elections report that we put out each month, access to exclusive episodes that are only available for patrons, or you can also get your name listed in the credits at the end of each episode. For more information, go to patreon.com/astrologypodcast. The main software we use here on the podcast to look at astrological charts is called Solar Fire for Windows which is available at alabe.com, and you can use the promo code AP15 to get a 15% discount. For Mac users, we use a similar set of software by the same programming team called Astro Gold for Mac OS which is available from astrogold.io, and you can use the promo code ASTROPODCAST15 to get a 15% discount on that as well.
If you’d like to learn more about the approach to astrology that I outline on the podcast, then you should check out my book titled Hellenistic Astrology: The Study of Fate and Fortune, where I traced the origins of Western astrology and reconstructed the original system that was developed about 2000 years ago. In this book, I outline basic concepts but also take you into intermediate and advanced techniques for reading a birth chart, including some timing techniques. You can find more about the book at hellenisticastrology.com/book. The book pairs very well with my online course on ancient astrology called the Hellenistic Astrology Course, which has over 100 hours of video lectures where I go into detail about teaching you how to read a birth chart, and showing hundreds of example charts in order to really demonstrate how the techniques work in practice. Find out more information about that at theastrologyschool.com.
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