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°.
Donald Trump. June 14, 1946, 10:54 am, Jamaica, Queens, NY.
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°
Drew Barrymore. February 22, 1975, 11:51 am, Culver City, CA.
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°.
Kurt Cobain. February 20, 1967, 7:20 pm, Aberdeen, WA.
|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°.
Jack Nicholson. April 22, 1937, 11:20 am, Neptune, NJ.
|Whitney Houston: Does not have a Saturn alien pattern, since the orb from Saturn to the ASC is greater than 10°.
Whitney Houston, August 9, 1963, 8:55 pm, Newark, NJ
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).
David Bowie, January 8, 1947, 9 am, Brixton, England.