Monday, May 28, 2012

The Emperor and Aries

Ongoing series of building characters using astrology and the Tarot--for writers or for fun.

Did you think that the Easter Bunny was a modern invention to sell candy at Easter? Yes and no. It is said there is nothing new under the sun, only re-purposed, and so it is with the Easter Bunny.

Before the Christian festival of spiritual rebirth, Easter, there was the festival of Eostre or Ostara. She was the lunar goddess after whom the springtime Paschal (i.e. Passover) festival is named.

The brothers Grimm tell us that Eostre is related to Old High German ostar, the adverb expressing movement toward the rising sun. Ostara/Eostre seems to have been a divinity of the radiant dawn, of new birth in the spring. You can see why it was adapted to the resurrection of the Christ (Easter).

Now, for that wacky wabbit (and, yes, we will get to Aries). According to various sources, Eostre had a hare as a totem animal and she could take that form. If you want more about this ancient history on origins of eggs, Lent, fertility, and rabbits as related to springtime and Easter, I suggest you take a peek at Association of Polytheist Traditions. 

So, hare/rabbit/Eostre/Easter/eggs/new birth/spring-all re-purposing. 

Okay, Aries is the first sign of the zodiac, a fire sign, and on its positive side, is indicative of birth, growth (energetic, adventurous, ambitious, enthusiastic, dynamic, confident and quick-witted)


in completing that cycle—death and regeneration (exemplified by selfishness, quick-tempered, impulsive, impatient, foolhardy and a daredevil).

Aries characters make courageous leaders but not good followers because of their “take charge” personalities. Their immense energy can make them aggressive, restless and head strong. It is their job to get things moving, lead the charge, begin the project but they may be unwilling to obey or submit to directives from others of which they disagree.

If you’re writing a werewolf character, Aries is the leader of the pact with strong personal magnetism. Or maybe you need a leader for a group of people isolated in a Sci-fi world after a global catastrophe—pure bliss for an Aries who loves all the new possibilities. He or she is someone who can ‘rally the troops’ and forge ahead. The conflicts come when Aries tries to force his way on others who may not agree. The Ram is Aries symbol and represents the driving energy of pushing ahead and having the last word.

Arians can be frank, direct and candid. They make enthusiastic and generous friends. Their fearlessness is commendable as they forge new inroads. If you want to use Aries to build character, you might want to take a peek at these sites for more details:

Let's quickly bring in The Emperor and The Tower cards of the Tarot. They both help explain Aries.

The Emperor card depicts a mature ruler sitting on a throne which is decorated with the figures of rams. Mature is the operative word here. It is what Aries strives to be; authoritative with responsibility—examining situations from an organized and rational perspective. Think King David of the Bible. (I don’t know if he was an Aries, but he could have been—his earlier days were indicative of Aries wilder nature before he channeled his energy into positive action and wisdom took hold)

On the other side of the coin (and there is always another side), Aries can misuse authority and become reckless and impulsive. He is great at starting new projects but following through is where he can break down. There is the element of the child here—a refusal to grow up, so Aries must learn mastery over his emotions in order to mature into his full potential. 

The Tower card “refers to Tower of Babel, a symbol of human arrogance that was punished by the deity of the Bible. The phallic nature of the tower and the destruction depicted on the card are linked to the planet Mars, the Greek war god Ares.” StarIQ

The Tower reminds Aries that he is his own worst enemy. It symbolizes eradication of an existing status quo. It is a warning against stagnation and ignorance and reminds Aries to continue evolving and growing out of outdated structures of thoughts and emotions—purging the inner self (by fire) like the Phoenix Bird—and then like the Phoenix, he can rise from his ashes and rebuild anew.  Astrology Scopes.

Do you know any Aries? 
Do you have a place for this character in your novel? 
Does the Tower card frighten you?


Sharon Clare said...

Very interesting, Cora. My daughter is born on the cusp of Pisces and Aries. She's been told she's more Aries and yep, she's classic, luckily with more birth-like characteristics.

Patricia Gligor's Writers Forum said...

Although I'm not into astrology big time, I find it interesting and I use it to a degree in my books. For example, in "Mixed Messages," my main character, Ann, is a Capricorn and she displays many of the traits attributed to that sign.

Cora said...

I wish I could do cusp people but the possibilities are too endless. Glad you found something to relate to in this article.

Cora said...

Astrology is a good starting point for sure--ready made character attributes, growth possibilities and even physical characteristics. Thanks for stopping by, Pat.