The Sun is now in Aquarius, and it got me thinking. Aquarius is the sign of being involved in making “tanks, ponds, and things related to shores” according to the Rishi Jaimini’s Upadesa sutras. Aquarius rules Islands, this is one way we can see it. It also rules people that live and work around Islands or “shores” in some way. People that live or work on boats, or near the water often do have prominent placements in this sign. Even the pro-surfer Kelly Slater has his sun in Aquarius, and he has made his living from the shore. I am a surfer, and I have noticed a lot of the people that hang around my funky beach town in Charleston, South Carolina have more placements here than average.
What does this concept of “things related to shores” symbolize? I think one aspect of it is that Jaimini is hinting at how Aquarius rules fringe groups and underground cultures, especially ones that promote new ideas or new things. In the old days, new and far away things came from the shore, like a ship bringing spices from a distant, exotic land. Aquarius is a dreamer, sitting or standing in the shore, dreaming about what the sea might bring them.
Aquarius rules progressive or underground movements, like being a Yogi in Los Angeles in the 40s, or being a surfer in the 70s, or an environmentalist in the 80s, or a skateboarder in the 90s and 2000s. Why is that? It rules these fringe groups because that’s what the shore is, the shore is the “fringe” or outermost edge of the world. That’s what the water bearer is really about, being away from the center of the world (which is symbolized by the opposite sign, Leo). Aquarius is at the very edge of the world, not at all at the center. If there was any further part that could get Aquarius further from the world, Aquarius would probably be involved with that thing too. The water bearer is the sign of enjoying the world, working to make it more bearable, but eventually detaching from and moving beyond it. Aquarius is done with the world. Aquarius is starting to turn away from the world and beginning to look out to the vast infinite sea. This is why it rules the shores and things related to them, because they are the outermost edge that one can stand on before being fully immersed in the sea, symbolizing spiritual enlightenment, and the next sign of Pisces.
So Aquarius is the last stage, just before one is fully enlightened or “in the sea” of Pisces. Pisces is like heaven, the work is mostly already done at this point, but Aquarius is that last bit of psychological work we all must do to turn ourselves away from the maya of the world, and towards the “sea” of truth. The water bearer is ruled by Saturn, a planet that has a ring around it, again hinting at this separated, detached, fringe-like quality that Saturn is comfortable with. Saturn is also the furthest light we can see with the naked eye, again symbolizing being at the fringe of reality, being “out there” as Aquarians are often described. (How the ancients knew that Saturn was the furthest of the planets is another mystery!)
I also talk a little bit about this theme of “things related to shores” in this video on Aquarius as the sign of skateboarders and surfers:
To learn more fundamentals of Astrology, check out the ongoing Jyotish and Yogic philosophy course at my new online school: https://eye-of-the-veda-university.teachable.com/