This lengthy aspect, first hinted at between May and July 2015, heralds the emergence of Eris (the dwarf planet first discovered in January 2005) into full consciousness. Although she’s been around for over eleven years now, she’s taken her time to seep into the collective psyche and make her mark. In some ways she has been wilfully ignored due to the challenging nature of her message.
Eris speaks of visceral matters such as violence and revenge. She will fight to the death if she must and is present in revolution, bloody wars and the objectification of the ‘other’ which enables human-kind to oppress, exploit and kill, often with seeming impunity. She is the violent struggle for survival, the ‘kill or be killed’ aspect of Mother Nature and the sheer bloody-minded tenacity of life even in the most dire of circumstances. Eris dishes out retribution for transgression of natural laws and seeks revenge for wounds inflicted. She is a powerful force of cosmic nature, reaching out in an attempt to wake us up to our potential for both violent resistance and peaceful but unmitigated struggle. She suffers no fools, takes no prisoners and refuses to back down in the face of even the greatest forces stacked against her. We all have a bit of Eris in us, but whether we meet her face to face may depend upon our own capacity to accept what seem to be darker sides of our nature: violent impulses, deep seated hatred and yearnings for revenge. If we struggle to recognise that, given the right circumstances, we too can become the terrorist, the oppressor, the revolutionary who sees blood spilt as an acceptable price for freedom, we will project Eris onto the world around us, fearing ‘the other’ who threatens us with their dearth of moral boundaries and lack of humanity.
Despite her raw power Eris speaks also of being a victim, an experience which can catalyse the impulse to rise up, reset the balance of power and reclaim lost ground. This is the primal reaction to a loss of liberty and self-determination. Eris straddles the powerlessness of being subject to someone else’s malice and the remedial power of revenge, only for that revenge to trigger on-going cycles of conflict. She wants her own back, but is powerless to avoid being subject once more to the same impulse in another. Through Eris we reach the point of acceptance that sometimes people simply do terrible things and we must finally walk away if we want any semblance of peace. But for all that, she will fight for the disenfranchised and strengthen our spirit to stand up against those who abuse their own power. And perhaps most importantly of all, she enables us to stand strong in defence of our dear Mother Earth who is subject to the greatest and most sustained attack of all.
As Chiron in Pisces joins hands with Eris in Aries we are coaxed, baby-step by baby-step, into a deeper appreciation of what it means to be nature becoming aware of itself. The primal instinct and vital force that fuels our existence is also that which kills for food or to protect its young. It is the shock of an earthquake, the boiling lava of a volcano, the devastation of a hurricane and monsoon rains beyond the land’s capacity to cope. Mother Nature can be a fearsome warrior as much as she is our mother. We must be too, at times, to protect her from the excesses of humanity’s obsession with its own desires.
Uranus is now forming a lengthy conjunction with Eris, first exact in June 2016, which will shake us awake in whatever part of our life we remain in denial of the powerful forces flowing through us. The temptation to see others as the problem, to project our own wild rage or vengeful spirit onto ‘them out there’ may be strong. Collectively we need to not do this but instead see ourselves in those who oppress with violence or pedal hatred because, in their situation, we might do the same. Contemplation of a mile walked in someone else’s shoes is important for the coming months, together with a recognition that each of us exists within a matrix of influence and circumstance to which we all contribute in our own particular way.
Chiron in Pisces and Eris in Aries make unusual bed-fellows, with Chiron so deeply compassionate and Eris so ardently militant! But together they reflect two powerful forces in the human spirit: the will to survive no matter what and the movement towards dissolution of self and compassion for all beings. They affirm that we must come through this together, for there is no merit in one prospering on the back of another’s demise. We cannot be separated when it comes to the crunch. I am you and you are me. And each of us reaps as we sow, if not now, eventually.
As Eris reaches into our minds and hearts she reminds us that we, too, could be consumed with bloody vengeance or battle scars in a different life. Just as we, too, can allow compassion to rule the day and deliver justice with a velvet glove of wise boundaries and empathic wisdom. In balancing these extremes we become more deeply conscious and change the world as we go, allowing the spirit of Eris to fight the good fight not the oppressive one, and set all beings free.