Aries is the first sign of the zodiac, indicating new beginnings. It is a movable fire sign, meaning there is adaptability to change and an ability to pivot quickly when needed. Aries is the “baby” of the zodiac, as it represents the head and is often known for pushing forward. However, they have a tendency to start something they don’t finish; they can leave people hanging with their inability to follow through on their actions. Ruled by Mars, they are competitive, ambitious, driven and futuristic. They are achievement oriented and know what they want and go after it.
Ashwini, the first nakshatra, is symbolized by the two headed horseman and is ruled by Ketu. The mythology behind Ashwini is through the story of the Sun and his wife, Sanjana. The Sun is the brightest planet in the solar system, so strong that his rays almost blinded his wife. She could not bear his radiance and escaped to the forest for deep meditation and put a clone (to fool the Sun) in her place called Chaya, which means shadow. Sanjana changed her form to a mare in hopes she would not be found. The Sun was initially immune to this deception but when he discovered Chaya was not his wife, he searched for Sanjana and saw through her disguise. He changed himself to a mare to be with her. Together out of consciousness, their union created the Ashwin twins, symbolized by two heads of a horse.
The love between the Sun and Sanjana survived many challenges, and the Ashwin twins represent the ability to overcome hardships through healing. They are the healers of the zodiac, having the ability to cure illness and disease. It is not surprising that they are also representative of physicians (the most traditional healer) and movement, as they travel and take action quickly to bring back our vitality. They are determined to make people feel whole again, bringing about a revival for those who were ill. They do not sit idle and are always on the go.
Ashwini is ruled by Ketu, the south node of the Moon. Ketu represents the bottom half of the serpent and has no head. It is a mist we can’t see through and where we feel things are always missing. Ketu indicates detachment and as the ruling planet of Ashwini, it denotes a separation from the material world to seek a connection with something larger than ourselves, as true healing comes through the spiritual plane. In addition, it is almost ironic to note that Ashwini is symbolized by a head (as well as Aries) but Ketu has no head, indicating that healing comes not from logic or analytics but through intuition and spirituality. Because Ketu has an element of mystery, there can be a secretive side to this nakshatra.
Mercury will go through its gandanta point from March 30 to March 31. Gadanta means “drowning,” and a planet that transitions through this point feels overwhelmed by its agenda. Mercury’s prime focus is communication, so tread carefully in conversations as there will be a tendency for confusion and disorientation. As the first nakshatra with a gandanta point, this can represent moving to new terrain. The month of March has held this theme, as we have several planets transitioning from Pisces to Aries, symbolizing closure and the genesis of something new.
Mercury with the combined influences of Aries, Ashwini and Mars can make people think in an usual way to initiate new beginnings. They can come up with ideas quickly and can be passionate in communication. There is such a strong desire to move away from what is not working but there may be impulsivity and impatience in doing so. The transition to the unknown prompts uncertainties and ambivalence that forces Mercury to slow down. Remember, Mercury is in its enemy sign which will cause him to charge ahead without careful deliberation.
Mercury will join the north node Rahu, Uranus and Venus in Aries. So be prepared for March Madness to end with surprises and unexpected turns in love, as Rahu and Uranus are unpredictable and sudden! Mercury will be aspected by Ketu in Libra and Saturn in Aquarius. Ketu will intensify Ashwini’s energy and Saturn can put the brakes on forward motion. Saturn will be in direct aspect with Mercury on April 5.
Mercury will transit through Aries and turn retrograde at 21 degrees on April 21, which is the same day that Jupiter moves into Aries. In addition, there will be a total solar eclipse at 14 degrees of Aries the day before, April 20. So lots of new found energy with Jupiter’s transit and an eclipse, more to come on this!
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