19, 2022
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Aquarius the waterbearer (also the man)


Jan 20 - Feb 18

The Waterbearer

Keyword: "I Know".

Aquarius is a sign that has changed tremendously in meaning since ancient times. It was considered to be much more difficult in the past than it is now. The changes seem to be due to two factors: the change in rulership, and change in element. There seems to have been some confusion as to the elemental attribution of this sign by the advent of the middle ages. In modern times it is considered an air sign, but a "water bearer". In ancient times it was a water sign because it belongs to the winter seasonal quadrant. The elemental nature shifted in other ways as well. According to Robert Hand, the signs had just one quality attributed by the Stoics (either hot, cold, wet, or dry), but by the medieval era, each sign had 2 of these qualities.

Aquarius comes in the part of the cycle just after reaching the peak of personal achievement (Capricorn). When Moses came down from the mountain, he shared his acquired (11th - place of acquisition) knowledge of the law with the people. In this sense, we share the knowledge we have gained and our thoughts with others. Modern meanings for Aquarius are that it is a sign of brotherhood, fraternity, platonic love, togetherness and humanitarianism, but aloof (?!), and enigmatical. Often there is the theme of "the needs of the many (Aquarius) outweighing the needs of the few (Leo)". It is interesting to see "weight" being used as the predicate in this sentence because Saturn is associated with lead, considered heaviest of the elements according to alchemists. Many of these meanings come from the planet that was considered its steward, Saturn. When Uranus was discovered, modern astrologers adopted this planet as ruler of this sign. Then came along such meanings as electrical, revolutionary, etc... I can't help but notice how much the symbol for Aquarius, if turned sideways, resembles a pair of lightning bolts. As you may recall, I said that Capricorn was the more difficult of the 2 signs, but this is not the ancient view. According to Valens:

"Those so born are malicious and haters of their own families, unchangeable, single-minded, deceitful, treacherous, those who conceal everything, misanthropists, impious, accusers, betrayers of opinion and truth, begrudging, concerned with trifles, at times generous through the efflux of water, incontinent.

Valens seems to be coming from the opinion that Aquarius is worse (even than Capricorn) because it is seasonally more difficult than early winter. These attributions are coming solely from a cold Saturn. In modern times, who would have called an aquarian a misanthrope! This may be an extreme example coming from a time in which reality had a different pronoia. Or it may be truer than most would want to think. It seems to me that those natives with a strong Aquarian or Saturn emphasis seem to have a corporate mentality, especially if born during the day. They seem to be emotionally detached, but dedicated to the greater good of society as a whole. Question is, who are they to say what is good for the whole? When Aquarius acts with dictatorial power, some very dangerous consequences can result.

More information on each of the planets in Aquarius:
The SunSun The MoonMoon MercuryMercury VenusVenus MarsMars
JupiterJupiter SaturnSaturn UranusUranus NeptuneNeptune PlutoPluto
Aquarius signBack to Aquarius


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