Twelve Phases of Human Experience
ARIES - Page 3 of 3
As the turning-point of the spring equinox is passed, the Night-force, overcome by the waxing intensity of the Day-force, leaves the stage of the conscious; but only to become introverted, subconscious or transcendent. We have already shown how this Night-force reaches fulfillment in Capricorn, in the fulfillment of the social-cultural ideal of togetherness — the State. In the two subsequent zodiacal Signs, Aquarius and Pisces, that group-forming urge, that will to build a collective and permanent "greater whole" out of a multitude of personalities, becomes spiritualized, more-than-physical, more-than-social. Thus Aquarius symbolizes social idealism, social reform, social transformation under the influence of Uranus; and in Pisces we reach the concept of the "invisible Community," and "Church triumphant" — in Heaven; the "Communion of the Saints," symbolized by Neptune.
The Night-force in Aries operates in a still more transcendent manner. Its symbol is the "Lamb slain for the redemption of the world" — in other words, martyrdom. In martyrdom the Aries person performs a transcendent type of action, one which is impelled by the great urge be has to live and to reach immortality as a self; for, to be a martyr is to become, in the eyes of society, the immortal symbol of a Cause. It is to be fulfilled in death as a personality.
This is the immortality of the seed, which dies as a seed so that there may be once more life and vegetation. It is the eternal Crucifixion of that which was sown in Libra. The seed dies into the new life, as night and the stars vanish into the glowing sunrise. And that death of night and stars, that death of the seed, haunts the subconscious of the Aries type who is not entirely absorbed in frantic activity and scattered fecundations. Thus the Aries vision, beyond the threshold of the conscious, yearns for the seed; which is to him, the Mother. While in his conscious nature he acts for the future, subconsciously he dreams of the past.
The balance between conscious and unconscious is very subtle in Aries — and also in Libra. These two signs are signs of equilibrium, in which the Day-force and the Night-force are of nearly identical strength. "Nearly" identical only; because in Aries the Day-force has an outward momentum which assures its domination — but a domination which must pay homage to the past, to the Night-force.
In one sense at least, the Aries person is called upon to sacrifice his past, to burn it on the altar of his dedication to the new life. This sacrifice could be a joyous or serene act; but the power of the Night-force in the subconscious often makes of it a dramatic martyrdom. Thus the feeling of self-pity so often found in Aries people. That self-pity is produced by the ebbing Night-force clinging still to its hegemony. It is a negative characteristic of Aries. Self-pity, weariness before the act, a sense of "What is the use," a sense of being a "Sacrificial victim" of destiny — are all negative aspects of that sign. They can only be overcome when the conscious ego succeeds in "assimilating the contents of the Unconscious" (in C. G. Jung's terminology), when all the energies of the Aries type are embodied deliberately and consciously into a work and a destiny, consciously accepted and discharged.
Thus, Aries: its strength and its weakness, its burden of destiny. The song of Aries is a song of solar "exaltation" because in and through it the Sun —"exalted" in Aries — feels for the first time that victory has been won. This victory over the Night is celebrated on the nineteenth degree of Aries, the point of "ecstasy" of the solar force. It is the symbolical Resurrection-day, Easter. Later on, in Leo, the conscious solar ego will realize itself utterly in the joy of creative self-expression; but at Aries 19° the Day-force triumphs with the ablution of the first love of adolescence. Then Life pours exuberantly into the youth who feels himself dilated into the universe. It is indeed the Easter song of rejoicing — the first blossomings of the trees, before Taurus — green leaves appear.
By permission of Leyla Rudhyar Hill
Copyright © 1943 by David McKay Company
and Copyright © 1970 by Dane Rudhyar
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