As the first planet discovered through the use of technology, Uranus is the planet of revolution and the modern age. It rules electricity, technology, and everything on the cutting edge. It's also said to be the planet of astrology.
Uranus is a shocker. In a birth chart, it represents the part of you that's most original and inventive, that shuns convention, craves freedom, and attracts — or creates — abrupt change. It can stir up senseless rebellion, studied eccentricity, restlessness, turmoil, and agitated states of mind. It can also herald unexpected, life-altering events, typically in areas where you haven't been paying attention. Uranus, it must be said, can shatter your world.
Uranus also generates flashes of insight, brilliant ideas, and new vistas when you need them the most. It's the iconoclastic lord of genius, inventiveness, originality, and everything that captures you by surprise. When lightning strikes, be it in the form of an unexpected pink slip or a bizarre career opportunity, love at first sight or an unforeseen divorce, a lottery win or a housing crisis, you can bet that Uranus, the emissary of disruption, is at work.
It takes 84 years — a human lifetime — for Uranus and its 15 moons to travel through the zodiac. Like Jupiter, Saturn, and Neptune, Uranus is a gas giant. But while every other planet rotates on its axis in a more-or-less upright fashion, unconventional Uranus seems to roll around on its side with its north pole pointing to the Sun. As a result, the Uranian day is 42 years long, and the night is the same length.
The symbol of Uranus (see Figure 10-1) looks like an old-fashioned TV antenna — an apt image for the planet associated with electricity, technology, and the future. The symbol also incorporates a letter H, a reminder of William Herschel, who discovered the planet in 1781.
The symbol rTl of Uranus. q
Uranus spends about seven years in each sign. Like Neptune and Pluto, it makes its greatest impact on generations. In an individual chart, its influence is subtle — most of the time. But when it's prominent in a birth chart, Uranus is the mark of geniuses, idealists, iconoclasts, nonconformists, eccentrics, inventors, revolutionaries, and astrologers.
And when, over the course of its 84-year cycle, it stimulates the Sun, the Moon, and the other planets in a birth chart, it can beget turmoil, foolish accidents, hair-raising relationship upheaval, amazing job shifts, and — in short — whatever mayhem it takes to loosen you up and liberate you.
^ It occupies an angle — that is, it's in the first, fourth, seventh, or tenth house of your chart. It's especially powerful if it's within approximately 8° of your Ascendant or Midheaven. (See Chapter 11 for more on Ascendants and Midheavens.)
^ It makes a number of close aspects to other planets and, in particular, to the Sun, the Moon, or the planet that rules your Ascendant. (See Chapter 13 for a discussion of aspects.)
^ You have one or more planets in Aquarius.
To check the position of Uranus in your chart, turn to the Appendix.
The sign that Uranus occupies in your birth chart determines the way you and other members of your generation shake off the burden of expectation, rebel against the established order, liberate yourself from fear, and express your most original self.
^ Uranus in Aries (1927 to 1935): You're feisty, indomitable, and impatient, and you value your freedom to an extraordinary degree. You're a pioneering spirit, brave at your core. When change is called for, you rush in, preferring the risks of being impulsive to the so-called safety of the slow-and-sensible approach. You're intrepid and inventive, even if your enthusiasms do flicker on and off. Change exhilarates you.
^ Uranus in Taurus (1935 to 1942): Once you admit that you want something and begin going after it, nothing can stop you. Your willpower helps you overcome all obstacles. You also feel strongly about money and possessions and you may suffer financial ups and downs. You gravitate toward concrete, innovative methods of making money.
^ Uranus in Gemini (1942 to 1949): You're clever, inquisitive, nervous, chatty, versatile, and mentally restless. You deal with change by refram-ing it — you'd rather feel like an unconscious architect of your own fate than like a victim of circumstance. You gravitate toward original ideas and new ways of communicating. You're also easily distracted with a tendency to procrastinate.
1 Uranus in Cancer (1949 to 1956): You have an active imagination, a sensitive disposition, and an unusual family life. You may move frequently or experience disruptions in your home life. Much as you long for the security of a nuclear family, you also rebel against it, and when you're in a traditional family (or even a standard-issue house), you may alter its structure.
1 Uranus in Leo (1956 to 1962): Assertive and freewheeling, ardent and talented, you enthusiastically throw yourself into creative endeavors. Offbeat love affairs (the more reckless the better) entice and excite you, and you approach times of change with gusto. But you can also be egotistical, imperious, and — in a word — obnoxious.
1 Uranus in Virgo (1962 to 1969): Even though you have an acute and analytical mind, you rebel against routine — especially on the job, where your need for freedom takes you in surprising directions. Your approach to science, technology, and health is both original and practical. And although you rebel against routines enforced by others, you're skilled at creating your own highly individual, compulsively followed patterns.
1 Uranus in Libra (1969 to 1975): You're imaginative and artistic, although members of other generations may be appalled at your taste. They may also be surprised by your relationships, romantic and otherwise, because you're attracted to unusual people and situations. In many ways your generation is forging an innovative approach to relationships — one that incorporates a high degree of personal freedom. Still, in times of stress, you're happiest with a companion by your side.
1 Uranus in Scorpio (1975 to 1981): Deeply intuitive and strong-willed, you're charismatic and determined, with unusual attitudes toward sex and death, subjects of eternal fascination to you. Sudden infatuations and lengthy obsessions may plague you. Finances also absorb you, and you may experience sudden economic shifts. You're resourceful and unafraid, and when change is in the air, you choose to experience it deeply and consciously, with an eye to the future.
1 Uranus in Sagittarius (1981 to 1988): You're optimistic and free-spirited, with large aspirations. You resent naysayers who denigrate your dreams, and you refuse to be constrained by practical concerns. You'd like to see the world — but not by following someone else's itinerary. You'd like to achieve spiritual enlightenment — but you rebel against standard religions. Travel and education excite you — but only when you approach them in your own unique ways. You feel liberated by the forces of change.
1 Uranus in Capricorn (1988 to 1996): You're ambitious, responsible, and methodical. Yet you instinctively shun the prescribed path and the old-fashioned hierarchy. As a result, your career takes some surprising turns. If you can express your individuality within an organization or a system, fine. If not, your deep sense of discomfort forces you to bring it to its knees and create an entirely new system. You're a force for constructive change.
i Uranus in Aquarius (1996 to 2003): You're tolerant, unsentimental, humanitarian, and inventive. A nonconformist and idealist at heart, you celebrate individuality in others and number many an oddball among your friends. Amazing coincidences and strokes of luck characterize your life. Uranus works well in Aquarius, so when you embrace change, your world opens up. When you resist it, unhappiness follows. This is also a fine placement for scientific and technological explorations.
i Uranus in Pisces (2003 to 2011): Imaginative, talented, and intuitive, you're susceptible to strange dreams and psychic flashes. You have a deep sense of compassion and an attraction to unusual forms of spirituality, although you may suffer from feelings of alienation or isolation. At these times, escapism beckons and your willpower needs support. Art and spiritual pursuits provide a fulfilling path for you.
Why are some decades more exciting than others? The outer planets are usually to blame. They travel slowly through the zodiac. When they combine their considerable energies by moving in tandem, things start to cook.
In the 1960s, for example, freedom-loving Uranus and Pluto, the planet of transformation, were aligned in the same sign of the zodiac (Virgo) for the first time in over a century. (The previous time was around 1848, when a wave of revolutions swept across Europe.) Working together, Uranus and Pluto strengthened and stirred each other up, turning revolutionary Uranian impulses into something that made profound impressions on society and in many ways transformed it. The civil rights movement, the antiwar movement, the sexual revolution, the student movement, the Weather underground, feminism, gay rights, the Moon walk, and even the horrific assassinations that characterized the decade are all manifestations of the iconoclastic, revolutionary Uranian impulse deepened by the transformative power of Pluto.
At the time, even such cultural touchstones as Woodstock, LSD, communes, Stranger in a Strange Land, and vegetarian lesbian collectives (for example) seemed fraught with cosmic resonance. Not only did they symbolize the Uranian urge to rebel against the repressive adult society of the 1950s, they also took on the profundity of Pluto and the significance of philosophy — or so it appeared at the time. And if, in retrospect, a few expressions of the era look ridiculous, it's also true that many repercussions of those long-ago, tie-dyed days will simply not fade away.
If you were born between 1962 and 1969, you have both rebellious Uranus and transformative Pluto in Virgo. Although the impracticality of much of what went down in the 1960s probably irritates you, on some level you're deeply in sync with the urge to break away from old forms, alter the hidebound assumptions of mainstream society, and give peace a chance.
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