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A Treatise on Astrology, Liber 536 by Aleister Crowley, 1917

Uranus in the Zodiacal Signs

We have already explained concerning Neptune that this planet represents the soul But it is static; with regard to its position in the Zodiac we see it in its relation to the Zeitgeist; and the quality of the individual soul must be determined by its mundane position and by its aspects. But this soul is sensitive and passive; as we said above, static. If we wish to see how this soul can heap itself up as it were and issue forth flaming at will, we must look to Uranus.

Now, this is the doctrine, that every living soul has a purpose in incarnation; and that purpose is single. Not one in a million, perhaps. is conscious of that purpose. We seem for the most part to be a mass of vacillations. Even the main career of an individual cannot be considered as necessarily an expression of the interior will.

Now, Uranus indicates this will; and the reason why he is so explosive and violent and upsetting to men is that he represents this real intention, which, lying deeper than his conscious purpose, often contradicts it. The outer and the inner are in conflict; and whenever battle is joined the inner wins. To the outer this must naturally appear as disaster; for he does not recognise the force as part of himself, or if so he regards it as a disturbing entity and loathes its dominion.

Uranus is the Royal Uraeus Serpent in Egyptian Symbolism, slow yet sudden Lord of life and death. It takes a great deal to move him; but when once in motion, he is irresistable. This is why, to the normal mind, he appears so terrible, Occasionally too, this is no mere illusion; there are certain forces represented by Uranus, of which it is better not even to think. Most fortunately it is rarely necessary to do so. In any case, this subject is too subtle, difficult and deadly to discuss in general terms; and it will be sufficient if the student is referred to what we may call ‘the literature of the Abyss’, using that term in the special technical sense known to initiates.

From what we have said with regard to the character of Uranus it will be seen that his force is peculiarly sympathetic to the Cherubic Signs Taurus, Leo, Scorpio, and Aquarius. He represents (to flash a vivid and illuminating, if not pedantically accurate thought) the spirit of the Cherubin, We shall see In the course of this paper how his action is modified in each of these signs, the Aquarium menstruum bringing out his emancipating and scientific qualities, since Aquarius is the man-Cherub; the Taurine exhibiting him as the fearful personification of earthquake and upheaval, since Taurus is the Bull; the Leonine emphasising his revolutionary and fighting qualities; and finally the barathrum of Scorpio manifesting him as the Death-star, or as the treacherous and subtle power of poison , or as the eagle which. although it cries ‘The House of Death’, makes whole the spirit. For Scorpio always best and worst of the signs quintessentialises Uranus more strongly than ever Leo or Aquarius, being indeed in some sort flux of these.

Now, as has been seen, the deeply interior purpose of any being is nearly always obscure and undecipherable but there is an indication or hieroglyph of it which is usually very significant. One can hardly call it more than the artistic expression of the purpose; and this appears a very good way to describe it. We call it the Temperament. It does not define the will, but it sets limits to the sphere wherein the will may work.

Now we have already assigned the personality to the sign of the Ascendant; and to this must now be added a consideration of the sign in which Uranus may be situated. Where these two factors are harmonious, we get a character with unity o r moral purpose; where otherwise, a self-tortured waverer. It might be cited as an objection to this that those with Uranus rising are usually eccentric characters; but the argument is on the other side. Such eccentricity is temperament in its highest development; it shows the entire overruling of the superficial qualities by this deep-seated turbulent magical will. It is only to others that the person with Uranus rising appears so eccentric; to himself he seems profoundly, lucidly, rational and if properly understood, he is so. Herschel himself is perfectly in accordance with the higher law; he is only a law breaker in the same sense as, when the civil law is superseded by martial law in times of grave crisis, the officer who at another time dares not lift his cane orders the firing of a murderous volley.

We are now in a position to investigate the ,truth of these purely a priori assertions by the study of the horoscopes of famous persons.

We shall class these under the signs in which Herschel is situated, as this is the purpose of this paper, to isolate his influence in the Zodiac from other considerations, and to this end we must look always at the rising sign in order to see whether that influence modifies it and in what direction.