What are the alien patterns in astrology?
Alien patterns are specialized energy configurations in the natal horoscope. The most common alien patterns include a conjunction of the Sun, Moon, or Ascendant with one of the four outer planets (Saturn, Uranus, Neptune, Pluto).
What are the alien patterns? | How do I know if I have an alien pattern in my chart?
I’ve been working with the alien patterns framework with clients for about 15 years. My experience shows that while these people are unusually gifted, they also tend to be unusually troubled.
The alien patterns were discovered by astrologer Edwin Steinbrecher, who wrote about them in his book The Inner Guide Meditation. Steinbrecher named these chart configurations alien patterns because people with one or more of these patterns in their natal chart shared a similar sense of alienation, of other-ness. Even in childhood, they felt apart from others. They were conscious of being treated differently, of not belonging, of not being able to fit in. From a young age they saw the world from a remarkably different viewpoint than most of the people around them.
I’ve had several alien pattern clients tell me they knew they must have been adopted: “I kept badgering my parents to tell me how to find my real family.”
These energies are not easy to carry through life because their function is disruptive and transformative and because they are always active on some level. These archetypes are so powerful that one can only suppress them for so long. Also, they are distinctly transpersonal or non-human. The alien pattern archetypes carry the intention of destroying old, corrupt emotional patterns, thought forms and behaviors – and they don’t care whether the person who is being triggered by them likes it or not.
Alien pattern people tend to find relationships uniquely challenging, especially relationships with family and intimate partners. Because they are – usually unconsciously – always triggering the people closest to them to evolve and transform, they evoke strong reactions from others.
These reactions range from intense neediness to verbal, psychological and emotional abuse, and sometimes outright physical violence. I tell my alien pattern clients that many of the people they will attract in this lifetime are drawn to them because the other person’s soul wants the alien pattern medicine the client carries. But if the other person is locked in an egoic mind state of fear, shame, separation or control, their ego will fight desperately to stay in charge.
I’m going to be sharing 15 years’ experience working with alien pattern clients in my new Alien Patterns in Astrology class, beginning September 10, 2020.
Types of Alien Patterns
Power alien patterns
People with natal Sun conjunct Saturn, Uranus, Neptune, or Pluto. These people function as initiators or shamans of the planetary archetype they carry. They radiate the archetypal energy of the planet in an active, outer-directed, traditionally masculine way.
Vessel alien patterns
People with natal Moon conjunct Saturn, Uranus, Neptune, or Pluto. These people carry the archetypal energy of the outer planet in a more traditionally feminine way. They magnetize or pull up the energy of the planetary archetype in everyone they connect with.
Instrument alien patterns
People with Saturn, Uranus, Neptune, or Pluto in the 1st House or conjunct the Ascendant from the 12th House. These people function as amplifiers and receivers of the planetary energy and, according to Steinbrecher, “Their abilities are intrinsic to their physical bodies.”
Adept alien patterns
These people have none of the traditional modern planets, nor the ASC, in one of the four elements or in one of the three modes. These people intrinsically understand the element or mode they lack and are adept at helping others in that area. However, they tend to struggle with this same energy themselves until they learn to share their gift with others.
Fire adepts, for example, have no planets (nor the ASC) in any of the three fire signs. They excel at helping others find their passion, discover the courage to start a new career, or step into a leadership role. They are often mystified as to how they can do this so easily for others and not for themselves.
Mutual reception alien patterns
This is fairly rare, but in the interests of accuracy this pattern occurs when there is mutual reception between the Sun, Moon or ASC/1st House and one of the outer planets.
How to Find Alien Patterns in the Natal Chart
I’m using Steinbrecher’s orbs (degrees from exact conjunction) as I’ve found them to be pretty reliable.
Power alien patterns
You have a power alien pattern when your natal Sun is conjunct natal Saturn, Uranus, Neptune or Pluto with an orb of ≤ 15°.
|Donald Trump: Has a Uranian Power pattern. Uranus is conjunct the Sun with an orb of 5°.|
Vessel alien patterns
You have a vessel alien pattern when your natal Moon is conjunct Saturn, Uranus, Neptune or Pluto with an orb of ≤ 12°.
|Drew Barrymore has a Saturnian Vessel pattern. The Moon is conjunct Saturn with an orb of < 6°|
Instrument alien patterns
You have an instrument alien pattern when Saturn, Uranus, Neptune or Pluto is in the 1st House or conjunct the Ascendant in the 12th House with an orb of ≤ 10°.
|Kurt Cobain: Has two instrument patterns, Uranian and Plutonian. Uranus is in the 1st House. Pluto is conjunct the ASC from the 12th House with an orb of < 1°.|
|Jack Nicholson: Has a Pluto instrument pattern. Even though Pluto is in Cancer and Jack’s ASC is in Leo, Pluto is conjunct the ASC with an orb of 9°.|
|Whitney Houston: Does not have a Saturn alien pattern, since the orb from Saturn to the ASC is greater than 10°.|
Mutual Reception alien patterns
You have a mutual reception alien pattern when the Sun, Moon, or ASC are in mutual reception with Saturn, Uranus, Neptune or Pluto. See David Bowie’s chart below.
*I normally work with the traditional sign rulers as the primary rulers and incorporate the modern sign rulers when helpful. In this context, however, I follow Steinbrecher in working with Uranus as the ruler of Aquarius, Neptune as the ruler of Pisces, and Pluto as the ruler of Scorpio.
|David Bowie: Has a Saturnian Vessel pattern and likely a Plutonian Vessel pattern (his birth time is uncertain). He also has a mutual reception Saturn Power pattern. The Sun is in Capricorn (Saturn’s sign) while Saturn is in Leo (the Sun’s sign).|
10 thoughts on “How to Find Alien Patterns In Your Natal Chart”
How is the last one rare? Everyone born between 2004- 2010 had a mutual reception with Uranus & Neptune!
Sure, if you use modern rulerships. But ignoring the traditional sign rulerships and only using the “modern” sign rulers for Scorpio, Aquarius and Pisces is like like trying to win a hand of solitaire with 13 cards missing.
I sometimes find it useful to think of Uranus, Neptune and Pluto as co-significatifs but I don’t treat them as sign rulers and would almost never use them to define a mutual reception.
I’m aware Steinbrecher advocated for the modern rulerships in The Inner Guide Meditation. He was a great inner work pioneer IMO but he wasn’t right about everything.
These classes sound amazing! I guess I have instrument, vessel and 4 adept alien patterns, 1 for each sign. That explains a lot and I’d love to learn more! Wish I wasn’t taking 13 classes right now or, at least, I wish there was some way I could do it all. Hope you do this series again sometime.
Hi Katie, thanks for the comment! I definitely plan to do the class again, maybe in September.
Wow this makes so much sense. Moon conjunct Pluto (ruling Scorpio) at 1.21 degrees and both are in Scorpio.
Does the Descendant have any role in these alien patterns? I have Uranus in tight (less than a degree) conjunction to my Descendant, which sits on the degree of Sag called “the great attractor.” Just curious . All my deeper, close relationships are portals for change ( usually uncomfortable) and usually don’t have long term stability .
That’s called a Uranian Shadow pattern (Uranus conjunct Descendant within one degree)and it operates pretty much the way you described it. I tense relationships where you are waking up the other person – and these people are specifically showing you your shadow, albeit often in distorted or extreme ways. Having Uranus conjunct the Great Attractor makes that pattern even more intense as I’m sure you already know!
Thanks for this article. I have natal Sun conjunct Saturn. People do tend to get triggered by me. All throughout school, work and college. I also have PLUTO conjunct MC and I have heard that can be a triggering aspect as well. It’s crazy because people will assume ‘bad’ things about me and then act like a bully towards me. Who’s being the bad person then??
Are you still doing the Alien Patterns in Astrology class?? I would love to know how to deal with this more, not only for myself, but my two children also have Alien Patterns in their charts as well. Thanks in advance
I’m so intrigued by this article. I must know more. I have the oddest looking chart I’ve ever seen. All my planets are clumped in the 9th, 10th, 11th and 12th bouses, with 4 of them in the 11th house – Mars, Jupiter, Uranus and Neptune. It forms a thick triangle with a cross in the middle. Will you be running any more courses? Thank you so much for writing this article.