Aries: The Astroherbology Profile

Welcome, clever ones, to the sign of Aries and the first of my Astroherbology Zodiac Series!

I will be exploring all twelve signs from a medical astrology perspective with an emphasis on herbal healing. Learn more about the series and what all the correspondences mean check out the introduction to The Introduction to Astroherbology Zodiac Series.

We start in the realm of the ram, known as Aries, and the start of Spring in the Northern Hemisphere and Autumn in the Southern Hemisphere.

Astroherbology Astroherbalism Aries

Element: Fire
Mode: Cardinal
Guardian Planet: Mars
Direction: East
Season: Spring
Wheel of the Year: Spring Equinox
House: 1st House / Angular
Lunar Mansions: 1st Mansion, 2nd Mansion, + 3rd Mansion
Solar Gemstone: Bloodstone
Tarot: The Emporer, The Tower, 2 of Wands (Mar 21 - Mar 30), 3 of Wands (Mar 31 - Apr 10), 4 of Wands (Apr 11 - Apr 20), Queen of Wands
Tissue State: Heat/Excitation

Body Systems: Head, Face (especially forehead), Nose (with bones of the nose being guarded by Scorpio), Mouth, and Eyes, including optic nerves and lens of the eyes. The Brain, including its blood vessels, motor centers and frontal and lateral lobes. Cerebro-Spinal system and Muscular system. Teeth (with Saturn + Taurus), especially upper jaw.

Imbalances + Diseases: Tends towards excess. Fevers, headaches, sore eyes and poor eyesight. Tension headaches. Inflammation, especially when excess energy is present, dryness, and heat. Muscle spasms. Ruptured blood vessels, especially in the head. Mental afflictions and disorders of the brain including congestion of the brain, memory loss, delirium caused by blood rushing to the head, encephalitis, epilepsy. Can be very emotionally rash manifesting sometimes as rashes on the head, face, and ears, and conditions such as very red or inflamed acne. Anger, arrogance, and taking up too much space. Ruptures on the skin including shingles, measles, chickenpox. Muscle spasms of the face, facial tics, and sore or tight jaw as well as swelling of the face. Migraines, especially if triggered by or include anger and/or irritation. All diseases of heat and dryness that proceed from dreams. Baldness and hair loss on the top of the hair, sometimes with excess hair growing elsewhere. Uncontrolled anger, “seeing red.” Fits of giddiness and hyperactivity. Insomnia due to disorders of the kidney. Bell’s palsy and general paralysis of the face. Stroke, rheumatic fever, rheumatism, and hemorrhage. Conjunctivitis (especially when caused by excess eye makeup).

Disease Degrees: 3 – 4 degrees: goiter, abscesses; 5 degrees; hair issues 9 – 12 degrees: fevers; 6 – 7 degrees: jaundice; 13 – 14 degrees: rheumatic fever, rheumatism; hemorrhage; 15 – 16 degrees: stroke; 20 – 21 degrees: abscesses; 25 – 26 degrees: tuberculosis, digestive troubles; 26 – 27 degrees: blindness, weak eyes, tuberculosis; 28 – 29 degrees: bronchitis.

Remedies for Imbalanced and/or Weakened Aries: Cooling + cold activities, including cooling herbs in the form of teas and baths. Relaxing nervines and moistening herbs (if there is excess dryness). Stillness. Active listening and inclusive communication training. Activities that allow Aries folks to appropriately express their Martial energy including athletic competitions, high intensity interval training, and studying the arts of fighting and self-defense.

Gifts of Aries: Energy, athleticism, bravery, courage, the energy of new beginnings, freshness, initiation, spontaneity, and vitality.

Rituals of Aries: New project blessings, rites of passage especially for children and teenagers, elements of fire in ritual, especially bonfires (including jumping over them or passing through them) and firewalking.

Aries Guardian Herbs: Ginger (Zingiber officinale), Nettles (Urtica dioica), Bearberry (Arctostaphylos uva-ursi), Vitex (Vitex agnus castus), Wormwood (Artemisia absinthium)

Aries Remedy Herbs: Yarrow (Achillea millefolium), Vervain (Verbena officinalis), Eucalyptus (Eucalyptus globulus), Hawthorn (Crataegus monogyna), Hops (Humulus lupulus)

Flower + Gem Essences: Impatiens, Black Eyed Susan, Beech, Wild Oat, Vine, Scarlet Monkeyflower, Citrine, Bloodstone

Bloodstone - photo by author

Bloodstone - photo by author

The Sun in Aries

When the Sun enters the sign of Aries each year this is known as the Vernal or Spring Equinox which should tell you something about the energy of the sign. Aries burst forth in the spring with the energy of a headstrong thing that wants to do. To do it* now!  The ram is a sign of great vitality and those born with Aries as their Ascendant or Rising sign may especially benefit from the ram’s inherent vitality throughout their lives. H.L. Cornell notes that Aries “is known as the ‘Cerebral Pole of Paracelsus.’ The Sympathetic Nervous System begins with this sign, and ends with the other Mars Sign Scorpio, which latter sign is known as the ‘Genital Pole of Paracelsus.’” The Sun is exalted in the sign of Aries which means that it’s inherent qualities are easily expressed and empowered by the ability and energy of Aries.

Aries Sun folks often rely on a very strong, sometimes forceful, expression of individuality when it comes to self-expression. They like to be the first to do something, to go somewhere, to think of a new idea, or explore new galaxies. Aries folk can be aggravating for others who are overwhelmed (or not impressed) by their bravado, but a balanced Aries can bring the spark of inspiration and the energy to get the job done so needed for a successful endeavor. Aries typically have bucket loads of energy and are up for an adventure – their confidence in their internal compass (when they remember to check what direction their heading) is inspiring. They aren’t afraid to make mistakes even if they don’t always know how to handle their pride getting dented by a fall.

Folks with a strong Aries Sun in their natal chart can be long-lived (if they don’t die early by accident or war – two areas they can be inherently attracted to) with a robust immune system that fights off infection and disease. Learning how to take up appropriate space and find outlets for their energy before it stagnates into anger is an important lesson for our adventurous Ram. The gift of Aries Sun folk is that they teach us to do it now and do it with confidence. Aries helps us to not only welcome in change, but to change before the change even opens the door.

*What “it” is isn’t always an important concern for Aries folk.

Aries Guardian Herb

Ginger (Zingiber officinale) - source

Ginger (Zingiber officinale) - source

Ginger (Zingiber officinale)

Fiery and dry Ginger embodies the warming and energizing gifts of Aries. The root stimulates an underperforming circulatory system, moving blood and heat throughout the body. Ginger awakens the senses and calls the body to action!  It clears out lingering colds, damp conditions, clears catarrh, and lifts the spirits wherever dourness or melancholy might dwell. Additionally the herb is useful for indigestion, nausea, and morning sickness. It is an ideal remedy for Damp/Stagnation tissue states.

As a sign guarded by Mars, it is good to know that most Aries herbs can be used to alleviate symptoms of maladies brought on by the cold ray of Saturn. Ginger, in particular, also works to alleviate Venusian conditions of menstruation which include cold and damp cycles that bring on excessive cramps.

Aries Remedy Herbs

Yarrow (Achillea millefolium) - photo by AJ Cunningfolk

Yarrow (Achillea millefolium) - photo by AJ Cunningfolk

Yarrow (Achillea millefolium)

One of my primary herbs for imbalanced Aries conditions is Yarrow. Known as an herb for the Wounded Warrior, Wounded Healer, Yarrow offers a cooling and balancing energy to our rush-about rams. Traditional indications for Yarrow match-up to an overabundance of Aries or Mars energy in the system : redness and splotchiness of the skin, inflammation, persistent fevers, a red, pointed tongue, and a rapid pulse. Yarrow assists those Aries folks who are overheated, hot-blooded, as well as those Aries who have lost the fire – both types usually have a build up of toxins in the blood as well as in the liver. Aries imbalances can often manifest with ruptures on the skin, whether hives or acne, chickenpox, or eczema. Another connection between Yarrow and Aries is that Yarrow is a primary blood remedy in traditional western herbalism and is especially useful for nosebleeds (remember, Aries rules the nose and the blood of the head). Yarrow is an herb of the blood: it both stops bleeding, moves stagnant blood, and clears old blood (blood cuts and excess toxins). Through its ability to move blood, by releasing and contracting, it is able to help regulate high, persistent fevers by opening up the skin. Yarrow releases trapped heat. When releasing heat, Yarrow goes through a cycle of sweating, purifying, and finally relaxing, making it very useful for relieving persistent fevers in children and adults alike. Since many Aries-type imbalances deal with the regulation or lack of regulation of heat and inflammation in the body, Yarrow’s ability to move heat within and out of the body is invaluable.

I find that the energy of Yarrow acts like a wise guide to Aries energies – it reminds Aries to slow down and practice going with the flow of energy both forwards and back instead of onwards, onwards, onwards. Yarrow helps to bring our body systems back to a state of homeostasis, which Aries folk and conditions can sometimes run from because they like pushing the limits, riding on adrenal, and challenging themselves to go just a little further. Want the full Plant Profile? The Yarrow Plant Profile and many more are available in the Lunar Apothecary!

Aries Sun Flower Essence

Impatiens helps bring out Aries ability to be patient and mindful of the needs of others by bringing out their ability to empathize and see the value of the opinions and contributions of others. The flower essences helps to develop the all-important pause that many Aries folk need to learn – to wait a moment before running in, speaking up, or taking over. With the gift of Impatiens, Aries folk can learn how to effectively use their energetic impulses and incredible vitality to move forward together with those they are in relationship with.

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