Uranus, the planet of upheaval and change, was discovered in 1781, between the time of the American and French Revolutions, which at least initially led to the breakdown of existing order and establishment of civil freedoms and new social paradigms. Not visible with the naked eye, its discovery was dependent upon invention of the telescope.

As the first trans-Saturnian planet, it represents the challenge to the walls and impermeability of structure, form, and tradition which are outworn and in dire need of transformation. Its powerful force is vital in overcoming the resistance of the old order and entrenched interests, which are terrified of change and will attempt to maintain power and control at all costs.

Uranus often expresses as rapid and sudden changes, at both personal and collective levels, that seem to appear out of nowhere. The speed and intensity of the energies are very unsettling, but can lead to many new insights and greater awareness, illuminating like a flash of lightning all that is not quite right in our lives. We are challenged to initiate the necessary steps in order to bring things more in alignment with perspectives and values.

The fierceness of the electromagnetic charge can wreak havoc on nervous systems, causing sleeplessness and worry. Humans frankly do not have the ability to channel these forces for long stretches at a time, so finding ways to relax and let go are vital.

The clairvoyance — clear seeing — is a gift allowing us to see what is so, without illusions and self-deception. It ignites the process of synthesis, the ability to perceive the interconnectedness and wholeness of seemingly disparate ideas, thoughts, and actions, and weave them into new structures and forms. Amethyst and kyanite can assist with this.

In traditional astrology Uranus rules Aquarius and the Eleventh House. The cool detachment of the Water Bearer and desire for exciting new and different experiences are expressions of these forces, as is the need for personal space and independence. The shadow aspect of this is the never-ending desire for excitement, adventure, eccentricity, and change for its own sake. One can get easily bored, and changing partners or interests becomes a way to avoid dealing with underlying issues. A focus on the collective and ways to serve humanity without the sacrifice of the self often occurring in Pisces, the next sign of the zodiac, is the counterbalance.

The Eleventh House is the field of friends and associates, and involvements with groups and new ideas, even revolutions in thinking and perceiving. But the tyranny of the group can be detrimental to individual expression, and is definitely a danger. We are called to be leaders, not sycophants or blind followers.

The forging of an inclusive global consciousness founded on interconnectedness, liberty, and equality for all is no small task in these trying times, yet many of us are inspired to do exactly this. Through meditation and attunement with oneself and spirit, intuition can flow and assist in the process.

Uranian energies are instrumental in the creation and building of community. Findhorn, where I lived for three years in the late 1970's, continues to be a place where people from all over the world, with differing spiritual paths and perspectives, join together to live in peace, love, and harmony, experimenting with new forms of governance, group process, consensus decision-making, connection with Earth and cosmos, education, outreach, and service.

Of all the planets, its transits are felt and experienced almost immediately — loss of a job, end of a relationship, even physical accidents. What is important is to not rush in to replace what is gone, but take time to allow the dust to settle, tune into what wants to happen, and see what opportunities emerge.

As an example, it has been conjoining my natal Mercury for the past few months. This initially led to the end of a 15-year job as an editor for a telecommunications newspaper. It paid well, but was far from being resonant with my perspectives and values. Interestingly, this did not create fear but rather a sense that opportunities would emerge for being more creative.

The first was an art exhibit at a local gallery, where 20 of my recent paintings are being displayed through the end of the year. It allowed my work to be seen and experienced in person, and I have made several very deep connections with people that would not have happened otherwise.

A short time later, writing came into sharp focus. Although I had occasionally written some short pieces for my website, particularly in relation to various painting projects, it was far from my favorite means of communication. Now I can barely contain the words that spring to mind, especially in meditation. Since Uranus is also strongly linked with astrology, the flow of thoughts and ideas have inspired me to write an ongoing series of articles on astrology, crystals, and transformation, which are posted online at several locations.

Scientific investigation and new discoveries are also related to Uranus, as is technology, which has given us many advances that make life easier and more fruitful. But this can lead to technology for its own sake ― we become slaves of the machine and inventions, constantly feeding the desire for new and different, without examining true cost or worth.

The part it plays in the global impact of the Internet and social networking is huge. But discernment is sorely needed in terms of the vast flow of data and quality of connections with others, and useful in furthering consciousness. It is all too easy to become addicted to the computer, tablet, or smartphone, and substitute shallowness, sound bites, triviality, detachment, and lack of focus for the challenges inherent in creating intimate in-person relationships.

In transpersonal astrology, Uranus connects to Libra. The traditional approach to relationships, society, and the arts is transformed by new ideas and ways of doing things. Social reforms and revolutions in consciousness come to the fore, yet with a grace and harmony not seen in Aquarius.

The location of Uranus in the natal chart is the arena in which one can be a cognitive outlaw. It emphasizes the areas of life needing deep, transformative, and penetrating changes. We are called upon to question authority and fly in the face of tyrannical and outworn traditions and business-as-usual, forging new awareness and being way-showers into a brighter future.

In the Uranian stage of evolution, our no-trespassing zones and cherished limitations are shattered, leading to the opportunity for a new life based upon love, compassion, and more-inclusive values. Uranus is associated with The Fool, Tarot Key Zero, the beginning ― and end ― of a cycle of transformation. We become willing to risk everything, knowing that things cannot remain the same, and offer fresh insights and approaches for the revolutionary changes, both in personality and society, that are so urgently needed for the next phase of unfoldment.

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