by Boots Hart, CAP

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Eris Direct: Awareness, Prompted

One of NASA's illustration of Eris (UB313) with the Sun in the distance
(credit: NASA, JPL/Caltech image source-Mike Brown)

Considering Eris’ alternate name (Discordia), it’s sometimes hard to think of the dwarf planet Eris experience of being ‘shaken into conscious’ as a positive. But there are those ‘discordant’ times of improvement, such as when we go through the mess and hassle of moving. Or when we take on a new job, complete with new co-workers, new tasks and that dreaded ‘am I going to screw this up?’ feeling which no matter how good we are at what we do does occur to all of us when we haven’t yet settled in.

There are ‘unsettling’ realizations which ultimately lead to great improvements in our life.

Then again, there are those times when life simply is discordant. Yet isn’t life – in some way – always trying to prove to us that we aren’t omnipotent, that we humans (and our precious egos) aren’t ‘in charge’?

Sometimes…apparently…we need reminding. That’s the Eris vibe. Whether it’s from without or within, whether the issue is what we need to do or be, Eris is always that thing we hadn’t thought of…and we will ultimately pay a price for. That price may be something we’re perfectly okay with the idea of paying because…well, if we want the house, we have to pay the mortgage.

Complications begin to arise as we realize that Eris is currently transiting through Aries, fiery sign of Self, motivation, tests of courage and of the physical body along with all we do or don’t do – and how we ‘see’ ourselves in anything. At an innate level, Aries energies are all about that we can use, embody or be motivated by – separately or together.

Aries is associated with the military (in the sense that soldiers embody the use of “motivational” force). In that sense, Eris in Aries is particularly ‘not gentle’ – a fact which would seem to fit uncomfortably well with it’s passage through Aries dating back to 1924, considering how mankind has harped throughout the 1900s about peace while pouring time and effort into building weaponry.

The question here is not political – it’s human. WHY do we have (or create) crises? We think of this in ‘fighting’ terms, of course…but if you think about that ‘fighting’ thing in metaphysical terms, the ‘fight’ is the reaction. You know, as part of a ‘fight or flight’ scenario. Even when campaigns (be they prompted by vengeance, politics, jealousy or anything else) are long planned, they still go back to the same place: our feelings of ‘less-ness.’

Those are feelings we don’t like feeling, because when we feel them, we feel ‘shook up.’

One last note here about dates before I move on: if you look at that chart and say ‘but WWI happened when Eris was in Pisces and WWI was allegedly one of the most horrific events of all time,’ I agree. But when World War I occurred, Eris was at 29 Pisces – the ‘culmination’ degree of the entire zodiac, a degree which with Eris (utter discord) present would be pretty good at events which would foist upon mankind all the follies of not wanting to be human or humane, most of all to ourselves.

That Eris did cross into Aries back in 1924 tell us that an entire celestial cycle finished then.

Which means that we are indeed in a new cycle of human development. And at the (Eris in Aries) moment, that development is aimed at who we are: our physicality, what we do with our lives or during our days. Through these venues, Eris becomes the timer, the flag-waver of all that we tend to say ‘why did this have to happen.’ From the startling to the disquieting to the shocking to the chaotic, our clocks – life’s clocks and life events will now be turning away from feeling a more or less ‘strictly’ internal sense of balance-and-rebalance as we mold, shift, shape and learn from life.

And what is it turning towards? Towards a whole series of events and months during which we will molds, shift, flex, respond/react to, be startled (even shaken up by) events occurring on the outside.

It’s straightforward astrology stuff….when the celestial object goes retrograde (which remember, is only ‘a matter of perspective’ from here on Terra Earth) its defined ‘effects’ are experienced internally. When the planet or object goes direct, the ‘interaction point’ is external.

With me?

The station – which in this case is occurring on January 9th at 10:26 in the morning UT/+0 time – is occurring at 21 Aries and as with all stations, can represent a ‘turning point’ in your life (or life in general as you see/experience it around you). Effects will tend to center around January 9th (if you’re going to feel anything marked) with events during the two ‘station allowance’ days prior generally speaking to things yet to happen or play out and those occurring during the similar period after January 9th indicating phases coming to an end and ‘conclusions’ being drawn, owned, realized, admitted to…(etc.)

With all that said, this station is occurring at 21 degrees of Aries, and 21 degrees of Aries is an ‘open invitation’ of sorts – which with Eris present may seem not all that fun a door to go through. Should you? Shouldn’t you? While not everybody is going to go into this time and considering how Eris will go retrograde again in July (when, by the by, it does so with one day of Uranus's station) this station at some level sets the stage for what we will either take on, grow through dealing with or find revealed in our own makeup between now and July.

We are all facing ‘newness’ of some type. For you it may be something you are doing. Or something you don’t know how to get done (and it’s just driving you crazy!). Whatever the focus, the Eris/21 Aries combination is likely to manifest in self-questioning which periodically gives way to devil-may-care bravado which in turn either prompts determination and advances or retreats, be they wise or cowardly.

And let’s remember: all this is happening with Sun in Capricorn and Venus in Capricorn and retrograde. So we’re concerned about our basic ‘standing’ in the world – however you see that. Plus, given that Eris is about to go direct but Venus isn’t, we would suspect  that some ‘thing’ we don’t control (Eris) is in motion even though we’re not sure we know what we think of it.

Not entirely. And it’s the ‘why’ here - the why we don’t know which is where most of us will miss the image. We will think this period is about others. Or the world.

It isn’t. It’s about each and every one of us. It’s about who we are as a person. It’s about how well we do or don’t take care of ourselves and whether we have any conscious, any cognizance that the world in which we live – that world out there that we think isn’t always so good – is a world of our making.

No, life isn’t about ‘them.’ It’s about us…which brings me to a whole other side of this Eris concept – the Sleeping Beauty aspect.

Like most of the ‘standard’ myths and fairy tales of childhood, if looked at closely enough Sleeping Beauty isn’t quite what you thought it was. The story’s origin is German. Originally published in 1697 by Charles Perrault as ‘Histoires ou Contes du Temps Passé’ the story – particularly as it has come to us (as ‘Sleeping Beauty’) speaks to the unconscious. Or that which we are unconscious to (or of) until we are ‘awoken’ to it – which is the underlying theme with Eris.

That 'not them, us’ is awakening us to who and what we are so that we can be that person more consciously.

You know…Eris in Aries, sign of awareness and consciousness.

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One of two poems by Tennyson about Sleeping Beauty, this one is from
'The Early Poems of Alfred, Lord Tennyson' (1901)

An illustration by W.E.F Britten from 'The Early Poems of Alfred, Lord Tennyson' 

Year after year unto her feet,
She lying on her couch alone,
Across the purpled coverlet,
The maiden's jet-black hair has grown,
On either side her tranced form
Forth streaming from a braid of pearl:
The slumbrous light is rich and warm,
And moves not on the rounded curl.

The silk star-broider'd coverlid
Unto her limbs itself doth mould
Languidly ever; and, amid
Her full black ringlets downward roll'd,
Glows forth each softly-shadow'd arm,
With bracelets of the diamond bright:
Her constant beauty doth inform
Stillness with love, and day with light.

She sleeps: her breathings are not heard
In palace chambers far apart.
The fragrant tresses are not stirr'd
That lie upon her charmed heart.
She sleeps: on either hand upswells
The gold-fringed pillow lightly prest:
She sleeps, nor dreams, but ever dwells
A perfect form in perfect rest.

                                               - Sir Alfred Lord Tennyson
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Apart from being fairly certain Disney either didn’t get Tennyson’s memo about Beauty not being a blonde or didn't care that to meet our unconscious or the unknown is to proverbially 'meet the darkness,' the other half of this Eris-Beauty comparison is one long made. It comes from how both stories ‘turn’ on forces which come from 'beyond that which we know in everyday life' - the fairy in the fairy tale against Eris as Roman goddess. In both cases, these 'forces' lay on a curse because they didn’t get an invitation to the party. (They were 'excluded,' in other words.)

The fairy gets all ticked off because she didn’t get invited to Beauty’s christening.

And Eris?

Well…far be it for any of us to cite and critique the behavior of a Roman goddess known for all things which go ‘bump’ in the night of our lives, but Eris turning up at the of Peleus and Thetis with a golden apple which she hands to none less than Paris – you know, the guy who steals Helen and causes the whole Trojan War?

Yes, that Paris.

That’s just mythic nastiness - as well as meddling on a truly mythic level. And it's even more so when you stop to look at the story and realize that Eris is prompted to go to this wedding by Jupiter (aka Zeus, should you be feeling all Greek about it), lord king Olympian and astrological emblem of all that we know or learn about our consciousness and life.

To look at Jupiter in the Olympian pantheon, he isn’t quite fate, so this is not instinct or habit we're talking about. No, Jupiter directs fate...which to us is the idea that what we know - whether we know it or not - becomes our fate so that we can consciously own it in or as part of our life.

Thus since the astrological Jupiter images wisdom… (knowing, learning, teaching, understanding, comprehending, et al ) or even being determinedly unknowing (which would be the Jupiter/rejection position or energy used to not expand one's basis of light of all such, this ‘Eris energetic’ is that which stirs something which is going to come out anyway.

The next act in this complicated little Eris drama has Eris not getting invited to the wedding. But she shows up anyway with a golden apple which no, she doesn’t give to the bride (or groom) but to Paris, that very mortal known (to the gods) as starry-eyed and very, very passion-driven. 

Zeus …(pardon me, Jupiter)… evidently has this whole Trojan War thing in mind to being with, a fact which makes the ‘Jupiterian wisdom’ of setting Eris up to get insulted and all which follows, starting with Paris choosing love (Aphrodite/Venus) over personal-internal stability and security (Juno/Hera) and dispassionately clarified understanding (Athena).

And yes - Venus delivers. In typical what we put out comes back to us fashion, that Paris (mortal flaw that he is) has in the moment of being handed a 'golden opportunity' forgotten everyone but himself comes out to be a war where nobody thinks anything of anybody's life.

Of course the primary moral of this story is: always invite the local touchy goddess to your wedding, whether you like her or not. But more to the astrological point, everything about this is about our life. So the ‘not inviting Eris’ is our having shut some part of ourselves out...which at 21 Aries begs the following question: what do we need to be open to?

There is a very positive side to this symbol which is highly external – the fighting for some cause. Yes, this goes back to Eris in Aries having played host to so many wars during this past century. But more importantly, it says to us that we can stand for something. It may be a cause as in some social cause. Or it may be our willingness to stand up for some facet of Self we really believe in.

 Generated by JPL's databanks (thanks, JPL) the above is an interesting image as
it shows Eris in Aries (at 21 Aries) with Uranus - which is currently at 8 Aries - just
sort of 'behind' Eris' position, if you're looking at this as an orbit around the Sun.
Given that and something like Saturn (on the diagram's "near" side) being in Scorpio,
you can begin seeing how it is the orbital movement of planets around our Sun and
the astrological conception of 'wrapping' our solar system in a zodiac which is a
cipher for nothing more or less than the positioning of moving objects in space -
objects which in moving create 'ripples' of energy, as do we.
This idea of ‘fighting for the cause’ – for something which is literally “beyond” the boundaries of your ‘Self’ reflects not just Eris position as a dwarf planet orbiting beyond Neptune, last ‘true’ planet in our solar system. Beyond Neptune… in the Kuiper Belt and Oort cloud… that’s the realm of all we cannot know simply because we don’t know it until we know it.

The Kuiper Belt: our land of things to come. This isn’t about ‘capacity’ – our ability to understand. This is about our ability to predict or be omnipotent.

Like you, I know a few people who would like to think they’re omnipotent (they’re not). But when you get right down to it, the issue is control.

And where Eris is concerned, we have to be willing to at least experience not being in control. Or the idea that we don’t control everything. We will experience it through what we hear on the news, someone who knows new, or even some event which occurs in real time or in our mind as we're walking down some street.

We'll just...hear it...we'll know because there it will be, and there we will be in the midst of experiencing it - and experiencing how we experience our life. Our existence.

The very process of our existing.

Eris is known as ‘Discordia’ mostly because humans like control. We like control because control feels like a defense against vulnerability. It feels safe – and sometimes safe is just safe and sometimes ‘safe’ is the space in which we improve. Or are productive.

But then Eris comes along. When an Eris moment hits you, that ‘which was’ a moment ago is forever changed. What was awoken? Why would it be awoken now? Were we in some beautiful dream – or is that what we have a chance to now see, experience and be motivated by?


  1. I think, Eris is a real ruller of Libra....

    1. An interesting comment - might I ask why you feel that way?

      - Boots