Listed here are a few of fashionable astrology’s contradictory messages about Aquarius, the signal of this month’s first Full Moon (Aug. 1, 2023, 11:31 am PDT): Aquarius symbolizes weirdness, iconoclasm, and innovation, but additionally friendship and membership in teams. So which is it?
Properly, I suppose it’s each, actually. Aquarius alerts sensitivity to the collective, whether or not it’s since you really feel an affinity for it or one thing a bit like horror. And the reality is, people are social creatures, so that is one thing that pertains to every of us.
Prowling Fb early this morning, I spied some images from a current reunion of my highschool class. Seeing them made me really feel vindicated in my resolution to not go. To my socially-anxious eyes, your entire state of affairs—from the windowless lodge banquet room to the manic gaiety of the conga line—resembled some little-known circle of Dante’s Inferno.
There appear to be at the very least two sorts of individuals on this planet: Those that by no means miss their highschool reunions, and people wouldn’t dream of going to 1. I’ll go away you to guess which type I’m.
Those that wish to revisit highschool each ten years or appear usually to be those who had been widespread again then. Or else they’re former outcasts who, having matured and blossomed, want to take yet one more stab at becoming in.
I’m not attractive or profitable sufficient to take a victory lap in entrance of my previous classmates, and whereas I did have shut associates in highschool, I by no means precisely felt that I belonged there. That wasn’t the final time I felt that method, both. Often, I really feel like some type of oddball – too fats, too previous, too droll; an astrologer amongst scientists, a heathen amongst believers.
The humorous factor is, should you requested the glad revelers at that class reunion whether or not they felt they slot in again in highschool, they could confess to feeling lots like I did—even those I thought-about widespread. The necessity to belong is common, however apparently, so is the fear that we’re misfits.
On reflection, I notice there could also be a 3rd class of reunion-goers, made up of people that merely get pleasure from socializing. They’ve an uncomplicated relationship with their fellow people, totally embracing events and golf equipment and invites to highschool reunions. Curmudgeonly introvert that I’m, I don’t actually get these individuals, however I do envy them. Most likely, they’ve a bunch of well-adjusted Aquarius planets.
Astrologers typically draw a clean with regards to the topic of Aquarius, or for that matter the eleventh home. (They’re not exactly the identical factor, however definitely have pursuits that might intersect on a Venn diagram.) Since a lot of astrology’s purchasers, followers, and college students are preoccupied with the sexier territory of intimate relationships, cash, and success, we are inclined to vaguely hand-wave Aquarius’ rulership of teams, associates, and politics, then transfer on.
However we shouldn’t be so fast to underestimate the significance of Aquarius’ territory. The social connections we construct there are among the many largest predictors of well being, happiness, and longevity, in line with some sociologists. In his e-book, Social: Why Our Brains Are Wired to Join, UCLA professor Matthew Lieberman cites research that present that our want to attach socially with others is as fundamental as our want for meals, water, and shelter. Actually, social connections are so important that Robert Putnam, creator of the traditional Bowling Alone: The Collapse and Revival of American Neighborhood, proposes that should you don’t belong to a bunch and also you be a part of one now, you’ll reduce in half your likelihood of dying within the subsequent 12 months.
For this reason cranky, cynical, quasi-hermits like me are most likely doomed to shorter lives than our fun-loving, gregarious, conga-dancing associates.
The signal of the Full Moon illuminates each the shadow and the therapeutic antidote to the Solar’s signal. When the Full Moon is in Aquarius, the Solar is in Leo, the signal of self-expression. Leo is the place we attain inside ourselves and pull one thing from the artistic stew. It’s the place we depend on an unshakeable sense of individuality and resist all efforts at assimilation. It’s not that Leo doesn’t wish to be preferred, admired, seen; clearly, it does. It simply doesn’t a lot care about belonging. Belonging, as Leo sees it, is for people who find themselves content material being one of many crowd, and that’s the very last thing Leo needs to be. However it may get fairly lonely up there onstage, all by your self.
I’ve obtained a metric ton of Leo planets in my delivery chart, and becoming in isn’t precisely certainly one of my presents. Nonetheless, I can readily recall a number of intervals of intervals of my life after I someway, briefly, slipped into the other, Aquarius finish of the polarity. For a time, I swam fortunately in an ocean of sociability, one of many gang and completely unremarkable. These interludes supplied a purring contentment that my particular person achievements by no means have.
At this Aquarius Full Moon, I’m considering lots about these glad instances and about my associates, my astrological neighborhood, and even about these conga-dancing classmates. In a society the place we actually do “bowl alone” lots, in a occupation the place I work alone in my workplace more often than not, it’s simple to turn into estranged from the remainder of humanity. I’m reminded how vital it’s to keep up these social lifelines—and the way receptive the world is after I do attain out to it. How fluid it’s, and infinitely expandable. How generously I’m welcomed again into the conga line.
Writing and pictures © 2016-23 by April Elliott Kent
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