On Dec. 19 and 20, 2004, the Mars Curiosity rover used its panoramic camera to take the images combined into this mosaic view of itself. During Chiron in Aries, curiosity about, and willingness to explore, who you are may be a good starting place. Photo by NASA/JPL-Caltech/Cornell

Chiron in Aries: Where to Start?

By Amanda Painter

Now that the Mars-Uranus conjunction is beginning to separate, it may feel easier to look ahead to the next major astrological event: Chiron entering Aries on Monday, where it will stay for the next seven years or so. Also on Monday, the Sun will enter Pisces, the last sign in the cycle. So Chiron begins its new zodiacal ‘year’ (metaphorically speaking) just as the Sun begins to wrap up its own.

On Dec. 19 and 20, 2004, the Mars Opportunity rover used its panoramic camera to take the images combined into this mosaic view of itself. During Chiron in Aries, curiosity about, and willingness to explore, who you are may be a good starting place. Photo by NASA/JPL-Caltech/Cornell

Dec. 19-20, 2004, the Mars Opportunity rover used its panoramic camera to take the images combined into this mosaic of itself. Chiron in Aries should provide ample opportunities to explore who you are. On Wednesday NASA announced the rover had stopped operating after nearly 15 years. Photo by NASA/JPL-Caltech/Cornell

Between the significant themes that Chiron in Aries will be highlighting, the Sun entering Pisces, and some of the interesting specifics of Monday’s chart, I’m having a little trouble deciding where to start as I write this.

So I think I’ll start with this: Chiron last visited Aries for a brief five-month stay on April 17, 2018; it retrograded back into Pisces on Sept. 25, 2018. Those five months were not that long ago, even if they feel a world away to you now, thanks to a long series of overlapping inner-planet retrogrades (starring Mars) and a couple of eclipses in the mix last summer.

You might find it worthwhile to check your journal or calendar (or similar) to see what exactly was happening for you in mid-April. (This April 15, 2018, Planet Waves essay is worth re-reading, too.)

What you discover could offer some clues to what Chiron will nudge you to begin paying attention to in earnest. While many planets have moved quite a distance from where they were in April, some of the slower ones have not moved far at all. So we’re not going to get a do-over a la Groundhog Day, but there may be some useful echoes.

Chiron entering Aries also means Chiron landing on the Aries Point — that super-charged first degree of Aries where personal and collective matters intersect, often in dramatic ways. As has been described elsewhere on Planet Waves, we have some particularly interesting slow-moving objects either in early Aries or making contact from early Capricorn. These are sharpening or coloring the personal/political nexus.

Much of the current clamor around sexual issues (particularly sex scandals, sexual violence and identity politics around sex, gender and sexual wounding) relates to this astrology. Same with the sense of a genie having been let out of a bottle (is the genie benevolent, malevolent, or simply amoral?) — and the generational patterns that have brought us where we are today.

Chiron promises to be a new level of wakeup call around all of this material, and more, on both the collective and individual levels. For you personally, there will be events and issues particular to your life circumstances and the path you’ve walked thus far. Tempting as it may be to keep hitting the snooze alarm on Chiron, doing so tends to invite a bigger crisis than what you might have dealt with otherwise.

The words ‘healing’ and ‘healing crisis’ get thrown around easily when astrologers speak of Chiron. But I think what that means is the process of becoming more consciously aware of who we are, what we’ve done, what has been done to us, and what we’re currently doing in reaction to (or in denial of) all that — and then changing our actions to match what we’re learning. As a wise friend once explained to me, “Understanding the lesson and learning the lesson are not the same thing. Understanding it is the easy part; when you’ve learned the lesson, that’s when you no longer have to keep repeating it.”

Or, to put it another way, Chiron in Aries will be initiating a process of self-actualization — at least, it will be for those willing to make the trip. I don’t think anyone involved in the process, even to a small degree, would call it easy. It takes persistence and energy; there will be missteps and missed cues and lessons that may seem to repeat endlessly when we get stuck. I feel like a nascent beginner myself.

Yet this concept of ‘self-actualization’ — specifically, the initial stages — is so enmeshed with the first degree of Aries, it’s a theme Eric has written on extensively. This May 2010 article is an excellent exploration of self-actualization in relation to the Aries Point, and even includes a numbered list of ways to facilitate the process. Chiron will be focusing our lens of awareness in this direction so strongly, self-actualization also receives significant coverage in the INTELLIGENCE annual written readings — particularly in the Aries reading.

I’ll be touching on Chiron’s ingress to Aries and the Sun entering Pisces more in the Sunday night mailing. (I suspect the Sun in Pisces will help to cool and soften what has felt like rather hot or nervy energy lately.) For now, I’d like to mention a couple other events in the current astro-environment. One is that Mars (ruler of Aries) enters Taurus today.

Although traditionally this not considered the easiest placement for Mars (since it is ruled by Venus), it has its plusses. For example, Mars in Taurus is said to be persistent and patient (though it can also be stubborn and possessive). You may find it easier now to work steadily toward a goal through sustained effort and routine than it has been lately. If you celebrate Valentine’s Day, think: unhurried sex with an emphasis on foreplay, the nicest meal you can muster (whether home-cooked or at a restaurant), and making that extra little effort to look your best. All of that fits Mars in Taurus — including if you treat yourself to a solo date.

Remember that sharing is caring: all it takes to spread good vibes and make yourself feel better in the process is to tell someone you appreciate them. (Best done without expectation or need of reciprocation; just focus on the joy in making another person feel valued.)

Also today, Mercury makes a conjunction to the centaur Nessus in Pisces, on its way toward Neptune. This looks like a tendency to react from subconscious motives, feelings and patterns (rather than responding from a place of conscious reason). If you have a thought or response that seems to come out of nowhere and take you along with it in a familiar way, that’s the sensation to watch out for.

We all have old hurts that have shaped us, but they are not the entirety of who we are in the present. Meaning: once you recognize where your reaction is coming from, you can choose not to express it to others in a harmful way.

From what I can tell, that’s one of those classic lessons that can be easy to understand in principle, yet can take years — if not an entire lifetime — to truly learn. It seems that as soon as we identify and work through one trigger (whether from childhood, our last intimate relationship, a past life), another one pops up. We then begin again the process of seeing it for what it is, naming it, and beginning to catch it before it has a chance to cause chaos and harm to the people we care about.

Along the way, hopefully, we learn better how to be honest; we learn better who we are and who we are not. With Chiron in Aries, perhaps we will begin to see all of that with clearer focus.

Editor’s Note: Eric decided that the section of the Aries INTELLIGENCE written reading on self-actualization is so important and informative for everyone, he’s offered to have it republished here. He’s also decided to give purchasers of any INTELLIGENCE annual reading sign access to the full Aries and Capricorn written readings, as reference signs. You can purchase individual signs of the annual here.

From How to Remember Who You Are — the INTELLIGENCE reading for Aries:

Though it was discovered in Taurus, Chiron has a strong affinity for Aries, and its passage through Aries seems well timed to address many issues involving self, self-concept and the notion of identity (something that is critical at this time in our individual lives, and the life of our culture). At the moment, our whole society is obsessed with identity, which is self-concept.

Identity is not self, and much of this effort is, in my view, insincere and misdirected. For the most part, it’s about labeling and tribal identity — not self-actualization.

Your quest, and your healing mission, is to find your true self; your most personally valid state of being and of expression. This is easily said, and not so easily (or so often) done. The reason is that in order to be who you are, it’s necessary to set aside or cast off anything and everything that you are not. Most people you meet are heavily invested in not-self. To the extent that you struggle with being yourself and with making choices that work for you, you are likely to be invested in not-self. If you knowingly do things that don’t work for you, and associate with people who do not support you, those are signs of investment in not-self.

Let’s use a metaphor: honesty. People like to talk about being honest, and sometimes strive to be so. Yet in order to be honest, one must confront all the things one was dishonest about in the past. Honesty requires reckoning with the current state of one’s relationships, and would likely require shaking all of them up. This is seen as dangerous, and potentially painful. Were you to suddenly become transparent and honest about everything in your life, you would be taking a big risk, or so it would seem. People might get upset. They might not want to be associated with you. That is the risk of actually expressing yourself.

Yet Chiron in Aries is going to demand no less. This will begin with being honest with yourself, aware of yourself, aware of your interactions with others down to the most detailed level. To do this, you will be taken on a tour of all the ways that your awareness has been suppressed, that you’ve allowed yourself to be held down, and all the ways you’ve compromised and held yourself back. This can lead to a crisis.

Most people would rather not go through this. I say most, not all. You are being invited to be one of the intrepid few who enters the process boldly, willingly and with full participation.

We all have our laundry list of things we wish we could resolve in our lives. You will need to set that aside for a while, and embark on this next stage of your healing journey without any agenda other than to be aware of what is so; other than to fully awaken yourself.

Awareness of what is so can feel like a real confrontation. There is no compromise possible. The condition of “I am living this way, people think I’m living this other way, and I really want to live this entirely different way” must be engaged and seen for what it is, and once that engagement happens, then the need to make changes becomes not only obvious but inevitable.

Chiron and all that it represents is a compelling force. In a sense there is no escaping, only establishing a relationship with the impetus to change, and your deep personal need to heal. This means the need to grow, and that entails an entirely new basis for making decisions. Different people will respond to it in different ways. Some will choose to go deeper than others. Some will respond by grafting onto the identity politics and self-concept level, which is already pervasive. You must be able to discern the difference.

Chiron never allows us to dump the past, like tearing down an old shopping mall to build a new one; rather, there must be a careful reckoning with everything we have experienced, and what it means to us. The underlying ground must be examined and understood.

However, the prevailing conditions of society right now are not supportive of this. In fact, digital technology, artificial intelligence and the tribal mentality these things are propagating are driving just about everything in the opposite direction. Here, we have a picture of the confrontation that you’ll likely be engaging on some level with your peers, your family and with society. To express yourself as a distinct individual with your own views, your own intentions and your own desires is dangerous business right now, but it goes deeper.

To be yourself means transcending even these more or less rudimentary human needs, and engaging in a process of the most profound transformation. Doing so challenges people; it pushes their buttons; it triggers them. Yet it’s no fun to go kicking and screaming. That is not real awareness; it’s more like resistance for its own sake. What do you have to lose? Well, all that is not true. And this can stir up other people.


As we go deeper into this most unusual and challenging phase of history, intelligence is the thing we need the most. That is the theme of the 2019-2020 annual edition of Planet Wavesaudio now available for instant access. See more information here. If you’re looking for individual signs, order here.

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