Chiron’s journey through Aries
Chiron is a small celestial body, now classified as a Centaur that orbits between Uranus and Saturn. He is a guest from the Kuiper belt, from the icy waters of space in the region around Pluto, the region where Centaurs are born. In Greek mythology, centaurs were a tribe of unruly creatures half horse, half human. Since Chiron’s discovery in 1977 many more Centaurs have been found and astrologers and astronomers have cooperated in their naming. This reflects a very important Chiron theme: the bridging of matter & spirit, of the scientific & the intuitive, of body & soul. Chiron as an archetype challenges us to integrate what seems to be unfamiliar and through this process gain new wisdom and understanding.
Chiron entered Aries already on April 17, 2018 but retracted back into Pisces from September 28 until February 19, when he will re-enter Aries and remain until April 2026. Chiron’s orbit is extremely elliptical. He can be in a sign for only 18 months or up to 8 years, as he does in Pisces and Aries! When Chiron moves through Pisces, we experience an increased sensitivity and dissatisfaction with the prevailing ecological, cultural and social conditions. Then, with the initiating power of Chiron in Aries change processes are ignited on a broader scale. Previously, Chiron was in Aries during 1918 – 1927, the roaring twenties, a period where people – especially women – tried to break free from traditions. So it was in 1968, when Chiron last entered the sign Aries and a new social era began with protests against the Vietnam war. Back then, women and other marginalised groups fought for equality and a fairer society. (Of course, we also had the Uranus/Pluto conjunction opposite Chiron in 1968!) Whatever was initiated during Chiron’s last journey through Aries from 1968 – 1977 has left a lasting impression on our consciousness until this day. With the new Chiron cycle now beginning, these themes are picked up again as they have to go through another evolutionary phase. In myth, Chiron is the wise and benevolent Centaur, healer and teacher who lived in a cave. He was taught by Apollo, god of wisdom. Since his discovery, Chiron has always been seen as a symbol for healing, including healing the earth and our ecological systems.
In astrology, the entry of any planet or body into Aries is regarded as the beginning of a new cycle. Chiron takes about 50 years to orbit once around the Sun. We have our personal Chiron Return at the age of 50-51, another key rites of passage after the Saturn Return at around 30 years and the Uranus opposition at around 40 years . At 50, we might arrive at our personal ‘healing temple’ while entering a period of inner contemplation. This is an important phase of integrating the past with the present.
The passage of Chiron through Aries is symbolic for the path of the sacred warriour. One of the core themes that is inherent in the Aries archetype, is the search for one’s individual spiritual identity, and the right to exist. Aries often has to fight a father/authority figure, an old regime to initiate a new order. Aries is the sign of the warriour/hero but “the hero must thus become the breaker of the old law, because he is the enemy of the old ruling system and the existing court of conscience”. (Liz Greene: The Astrology of Fate). In this sense, for the world to heal, the old order has to be broken down by acts of courage. Chiron in Aries at its best fights for an equal society and encourages others to stand up for themselves, their beliefs and their rights as human beings. A great example is Mohandas Gandhi who had Chiron in Aries opposite his Libra Sun. He was the leader of India’ independence movement.
The ultimate Chiron lesson is acceptance. By accepting our limitations we can find freedom, finding freedom within given limitations. Freedom from illness or injury doesn’t come from fighting harder, it comes from accepting what is so that healing can begin. In regards to our ecological situation and climate change, we have to accept the limitations of our current mind set and life styles which have led to the destruction of our natural environments. There are real limits of what we can take from the earth and put out into the air. During the Chiron cycle that is now beginning, much is likely to be decided as far as survival on this planet is concerned. Simultaneously, Uranus will be moving through Taurus over the next seven years, revolutionising the way we grow food, hopefully encouraging biodiversity and industries that do not use pesticides. The decisive factor will be a broad scale change in consciousness and personal commitment to an ecologically sound life style.