March 20, 2004 – Spring brings an extra freshness in the air this year. With the New Moon on Spring Equinox, March 20, we enter a new moon cycle, a new season and a new cosmic round the same day. As the first sign of the zodiac, Aries starts a new astrological year.
The Sabian Symbol for this New Moon at 1 degree Aries still drips of the Pisces sea:
"The Secret of Roan Inish" is a wonderful movie that tells the story of a selkie, a seal woman. A well-known myth from the Orkney Islands, a similar tale is found among the Inuit. The selkie sheds her seal skin when she steps onto land to dance. In the most-told story, a man falls in love with her and hides her seal skin so that she will stay with him. Eventually, though, she must go back to the sea or she will die. These gentle shape-shifters from the sea, both male and female, are seductive and irresistible, like mer-people, and are more likely to be seen in this seven-year cycle of Uranus in Pisces. A new movie called "Selkie" is out, aimed for young people. This might be a good time to look up Clarissa Pinkola Estes' version in "Women Who Run With the Wolves." In the chapter "Sealskin, Soulskin," she talks about the need to return to our natural cycles and selves, our soul-place, our wilder-ness. This is the time to return to and re-fresh ourSelves.
Like the above woman, every Aries rises newly minted from the ocean of universality, washed in cosmic dew, freshly energized to move forth into undiscovered vistas. The quest for the Self is the adventure of a lifetime. Aries seeks to fully live the wonder of being human, to clarify the divine impulse. There is an unmistakable flash, a star twinkle in the eyes of even the gentlest of Arians.
Aries is the Original Hero/ine: Jason sailing in search of the Golden Fleece; young Parsifal naively stumbling along the road to knighthood; Joan of Arc leading the French army to enthrone the righteous King; Enterprising Captain Kirk (aka William Shatner) going where no one has gone before. "Follow me!" is the pioneering cry of these captains courageous. Even if no one else follows, they will carry on alone if they identify with the cause. Aries faces the challenge, and will often enough emerge victorious through personal integrity.
There are bound to be such challenges this month, as Saturn squares off with the New Moon. Saturn reigns in the impulsiveness of Aries and provides support and endurance, if you are open to receiving it. Cosmic light bulbs are ready to pop out over our heads. Saturn is capable of manifesting these fresh ideas (so needed!) sparking Aries.
Enter Perseus, the Greek hero who cut off the head of the Medusa. On his way home, he spied Andromeda, chained to a rock as an offering to the sea monster. Can today's hero find happiness with a wimpy princess swooning on a rock passively awaiting her terrible fate? Of course not. The modern hero rewrites the script. Take It From the Top:
Perseus struggles mightily with the monster Medusa and emerges victorious, with a lot of help from higher powers. After beheading the Medusa with a slice of his sword, Perseus flies off on Pegasus, the winged horse. He spies Andromeda on a rock in the middle of the sea, arms raised to call in cosmic energy, or maybe Sedna. AndroMEDa may have been a mermaid — or a selkie! — and was evidently related to MEDusa. As Perseus engages the monster, she calls to him to take the head of Medusa out of the bag. She's still got a good head on her shoulders. The sea monster is turned to stone. Andromeda likes this guy, so lucky Perseus wins the hand of this gorgeous, gutsy babe. They work well together.
The modern Aries hero writing his own myth, acting from the chivalrous heart of the true romantic who, in these modern psychological times, has integrated his inner feminine soul light. Although typically rather macho about it, when Aries has incorporated the balancing qualities of his opposite sign, Libra, he can be strong and sure enough of himself to be in equal partnership. TV Amazon Xena shows us a strong female Aries role model. The whole generation born in the first half of the 1970s, with Pluto in Libra and Chiron in Aries, is here to invent new ways of being in relationship, to blaze new trails in living and loving, fresh as the joy of the seals in the sea.
We need these hero/ines. A new Medusa-like divinity has emerged out of the wilderness of the remote solar system. The new planetoid which was discovered last November has been tentatively named Sedna. Gigantic and one-eyed, Sedna is a major Inuit goddess of the sea, with a story both tragic and haunting. A beautiful young woman who was seduced by a Bird-spirit who had shape-shifted into a man. She went off with him across the sea, but when she realized the truth, she was repulsed. Her father came to rescue her, but the bird stirred up a storm in the seas. The horrified father was compelled to throw his daughter to the sea. When she clung to the boat, he cut off her fingers, which turned into sea creatures of the Arctic.
This new celestial object is a shiny icy red world, with an orbit around the Sun of 10,500 years. An ancient one, indeed, with a challenging story to engage the collective consciousness of our time.
The New Moon pushes Mars into Gemini on March 21, joined by Venus on April 30. Keep an eye on the celestial approach of this pair of mythic lovers as the spring goes on. All five visible planets will be in the night sky in April, riding along the zodiac highway in the heavens, punctuated by a couple of comets. More on all this next time …
Meanwhile, see where this Aries New Moon is igniting new fires for you. See how far you can get by the Full Moon on April 5. Mercury goes retrograde on April 7 and then it will be time to slow down, review what's been going on and what the next steps are.

Editor's note: Astrologer Kelley Hunter lives on St. John, U.S. Virgin Islands, where she leads stargazing nights. She is astrologer-in-residence for the Self Centre at Caneel Bay Resort and for the Omega Institute winter programs in the Caribbean. Hunter recently earned her doctoral degree in an interdisciplinary combination of philosophy, cosmology and myth. To be on her e-mail list for monthly articles or for an astrology consultation, write Explore her Web site here

Copyright 2004 by M. Kelley Hunter

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