Into the Journey
The 11th lunation of 2014 opens on October 23/24th with a partial solar eclipse. With the lunation beginning at 0° Scorpio this means that the mid-point between Equinox and Solstice, Samhain, arrives just one week later under the swelling quarter Moon.
There is a significant difference between the eclipse and Samhain charts, even though they are only a week apart. This has to do with the emphasis applied by their differing dynamics. To fully bring out the differences we’ll look directly into the chart for Samhain in the next post. But, the intervening period tells us much, and its defining qualities come from the opening of the lunation, which is the focus here………first, lets get a sense of the ‘dynamics’ at work at the eclipse.
The Sun, Moon and Venus are exactly conjunct with no strong aspects connecting directly to them at the eclipse. This is a defining moment which suggests that we are in a qualitative field based influence, rather than under a dynamic based on aspects directly connecting across the matrix. Venus and Mars are fast moving at the moment, with Mercury slowing down to station direct, but, it is the eclipse conjunction marking entry into Scorpio that brings the key qualities out.
The themic backdrop to this scene comes from the ongoing and tightening square between Uranus and Pluto suggesting that what we see in the eclipse conjunction signals a change to how the U/P square is playing out in the world. We are looking at a shift in focus as an entry point and this is puts us all at the heart of participation in ‘transition’.
Eclipses bring the opportunity for a glimpse beyond the usual constraints of time and space, and the major influences here connect us with other dimensions of our reality. With Samhain embedded in this Moon cycle we need to pay close attention to these now.
The first week after the new Moon and solar eclipse will provide us with an opportunity to make personal adjustments in advance of Samhain and the ‘thinning of the veils’. In many senses this looks like a strong period for spiritual activists to step up a gear, but, the underlying theme is addressing some very old and fundamental wounds that affect us all. This signals entry into a new phase in how we engage with Earth’s story – the seasons are changing and so is the centre of gravity within the story’s telling. Lets set the scene.
The opening of the lunation of the 11th Moon brings a deepening of sacred space and, in the north, the lights of the inner worlds begin to brighten as the nights of the Long Dark close about us. Stories, long held as sacred, are emerging from their root born troves and the face of Nature reveals first glimmerings of the mysteries that wait beyond the veil. These are teaching stories that hold gems of wisdom and advice in their telling. The southern hemisphere is seeing that storied connection play out through verdant swelling of the inner life force and, where Nature has a strong voice, she clothes the world in creative manifestation of this vibrant energy. Within the fruits seeds are being formed.
These are magical times, the outer and inner worlds casting a spell of glamours that perfectly befit the crafting and the weaving of human life within the Earth’s story. Both without and within ‘truth’ takes on form and reminds us of the journey we undertook in coming here. And, the planet of ‘truth’, Saturn, is at work throughout the field.
Saturn in the final decan of tropical Scorpio is also largley unaspected at the eclipse, his square with Jupiter in Leo moving out of phase, but, the ringed planet brings a sense of reality to the more mythic undercurrents of the chart. His mutual reception with Pluto in Capricorn has been instrumental in emphasising the serious nature of our collective story, but, while Saturn tests our mettle as we are challenged to cross the boundaries of the world he can also deliver immensely meaningful and lasting effects as an outcome of this journey. Being a guardian of the threshold between life and death Saturn at his best is highly creative, magical even. He applies the ‘reality principle’ and there can, equally, be a Midas touch to this, as much as an ability to bring out the ring of truth in what he touches. How we rise to the challenge of the transition is perhaps reflected in the Midas myth and is summed up in one of his key words, response-ability. Readiness to respond means being prepared, but, with Saturn, that also means knowing what is essential to the undertaking. This is not a time for making impulsive or ego-driven choices.
Time is also a key aspect of Saturn’s emphasis, and timing helps us to focus our activities effectively. But, Life also spins the warp and weft of longer periods of time into the patterns of the natural cycles of Earth’s story. Saturn is a ‘key holder’ to the chronology of earth-life ~ when he lends us the key, the tumblers fall and the lock opens. But he is not alone in initiating this movement.
Closer to home, the celestial matrix also sees this lunation open with the planet Mercury travelling at its closest point to the Earth – being retrograde he is the undercover ‘intelligence agent’ and activates our inner intelligence as he delivers messages from beyond ~ we will be able to work more effectively with Mercury here if we can find sacred space free from the noise of the world and care to listen. Mercury, being close on the lunar north node, tells us to be mindful in playing out our affairs in this world as these, and the messages he can bring now, concern where we are all headed.
Venus will pass behind the Sun immediately after the solar eclipse. Here we have another indication of the nature of our undertaking. She is entering the unseen, the initiation ground.
There is also a connection between the lunar and solar eclipses. If the lunar eclipse of October 8th pitched questions, particularly around what is motivating us and how personal truths match up to collective realities, the solar eclipse asks us to dive further in, to apply intuition and inner knowing, and above all else courage, not just in the search for answers through our own stories, but, in the sacred task of giving them flesh to live through, of bringing them into reality.
For people of ‘medicine’, healers and devotees of ‘the creative’ the role of our personal stories is now infused with a greater poigniancy. If our world is in need of healing, so is humanity and the evolution of our Mythos is central to the healing process…..we all have a role to play. And then theres Samhain.
Samhian is the threshold through which the worlds become interfused, and the key here is in setting an intent to engage with the spiral dynamic of creation to take us on our journey. In getting to the heart of this we find the story of the Grandmother Spider from the last lunation reaching into this one, and She, who works with the principle powers of ‘creation’ and ‘destruction’, is taking us to the heart of her web.
This is where ‘truth’ resides, representing the beginning and essence of everything. To arrive there is to return to the centre, the nexus point, and the task ahead is to return to the world ‘the fruits’ of our journey. She now asks us us to walk in truth as we follow a red trail winding labyrinth-like within the weavings of natural law. As law keeper she introduces us to the fundamental principles that put flesh on the bones of the world. The key word in this task is Reconstitution. At Samhain we can ask for guidance in this task.
Samhain is a powerful time for initiation. The shamanic pathway of initiation pivots around the meeting of the worlds, begins and ends with this integration, and, in reflection of this, in some northern traditions Samhain signals the starting point of the new year. The star world offers another perspective that can guides us in this. In the skies the solar eclipse occurs within the stars forming the constellation of Virgo. Looking to pathways honouring the innate power of the sacred feminine we can also see that the eclipse aligns with the belly of Virgo, her womb. Virgo is the seed carrier. The goddess is also present in the nexus point through Venus, conjunct the Sun and Moon, and the higher wisdom of the heart can be called upon for guidance on this journey. At Samhain the Sun is aligned with the stars in the legs of Virgo – the journey, by then, is underway. And, to highlight the quality of the times and flavour of experience available here, the eclipse degree of 0° Scorpion is itself a powerful springboard within the tropical zodiac for integration into the Mysteries.
In earlier times the degrees of late Libra and early Scorpio were known by the epithet ‘Via Combusta’ ~ the Fiery Road. This pathway has ancient roots which had more to do with initiation into the mysteries of birth-death-rebirth than with debilitating downfall that the later mythos imposed upon it. With the new Moon and solar eclipse at its mid-point, the Via Combusta is also supporting the theme unfolding here, and, contrary to the propoganda which changed its meaning, it leads us not to debilitation, but, back to the goddess in her Great Mother aspect…..
If there is a time for honouring the feminine in her divine and life bearing aspects, this is it, but, it is her elder role as Earth Mother that brings us to the core of the moment. Our source point is in her ancient nature and ‘grandmother’ has much to offer us here, if we honour Her.
It must be acknowledged that, when the ground beneath our feet is shaking, the magma flowing, when winds are roaring and the waters rising, it is hard to level the need for otherworldly mysteries against the hard-core reality of a world in which human intervention is achieving meltdown of rather than integration with Nature. Even so, the rage of Demeter, the Mother, at the abduction of her daughter, the seed bearer, by the ruler of the underworld is reflected in this meltdown. The Great Mother, we are now being reminded, never left us and the usurpers of Her powers, the Plutocrats, are being exposed for what they are ~ mask wearing pedlars of hidden agendas and fear. All the signs are there! But, the story goes deeper still…..
Pluto, being the relative late comer and invention of those who applied the patriarchal pantheon, has assumed a masculinised form of just one aspect of the much more archaic and inclusive Great Mother, and there is perhaps no sign in which Pluto shows this side of Her more clearly than in tropical Capricorn. Here, as ruler of the Underworld, more than in Scorpio to which his modern rulership has become attached, S/he taps into the otherworldly root of worldly power to bring about complete renewal. In fact, to give a clearer picture of what has happened here, the Great Mother is the archaic source of that power. Hers is the knowledge carried in the essential matter of being, the ability to reconstitute Life, Phoenix wise, from the ashes of the bones of the Earth. And the Phoenix is one of the esoteric symbols of Scorpio.
In Hades/Pluto, for the greco-roman dieties are virtually interchangable, the subterranian forces have become a ‘technology’ of seperation and trial by fire, and, subsequently, this has been made an instrument of suppression through an esoteric masking and occultation of Her all embracing power…..such that, by the time the myth of Ceres and Proserpina became translated out of Demeter and Persephone, She had become fragmented, extracted out of the multiplicity of her own root identity, her manifold nature still enshrined in the ‘triple goddess’, but, translated into the agrarian cults of the early patriarchy. Division of labour took root within these socio-spiritual constructs.
If the fires have been consigned to an underworld role, their divine nature has also been split and projected beyond the earthly realms. Uranus holds the key to this mystery, a memory of divine fire that precedes our chronological Saturnian lock down into temporality. But, Uranus carries the divine fire, in essense and effect, as instantaneous, lightning struck power for change and divine intervention. When Uranus becomes involved through aspect and resonance with Pluto, the initiatic memory of the deeper roots surfaces and underpins the skin of reality with a knowing that stirs the powers at large in the world. Such is the effect of these times. We cannot deny the effects of such powers, but, rather, would do well in allowing the deep roots of our own memories to stir our own powers within the world of our individual lives. These are ancient memories belonging to a time before recorded his-tory. Spiritual activism does not mean disengaging from the world ~ on the contrary, it means becoming more real. This promises the freedom that is our birth right and true inheritance.
This is the ongoing task of turning the story around and re-defining our mythos. It means working with sacred technology to re-sacralise the world. Material technology itself can become transformed through this, making it an instrument of personal empowerment, not simply as a material end in itself, literalised, commodified and weaponised, but, as a means to practice an ecology that re-ignites the spark of new life from within the ashes of the old.
Mercury’s retrograde at the opening of this lunation also tells us we need to be diligent in this. Just as the sacred grounding of the initiate in new awareness requires, so for the activist ~ how we communicate and with whom will need special attention, emphasising the importance of what we say and do. The reality of the wound of seperation is reflected through the projection of their own shadow by the tightening grip of plutocratic authorities upon freedom of speech and action.
This degree of diligence applies in the outer world in other ways as well, not only in how we affect others, but, in how we affect and programme ourselves, being alert to the machinations of the automatic pilot in our midst. The reality of this is no secret. Rhetoric is being seen-through and actions are speaking louder than words, especially where they are rooted in unconscious behaviour that is driving suppressive intents. As Mercury suggests, the activist can learn much from keeping a wiley eye open for patterns that reveal hidden agendas. And, with a highly divisive political edge at large in the world, this certainly applies more than most to leaders and the use of power. The violations of people and of nature we are witness to tell us clearly that there is a vested interest at work in the world that is hell bent upon retaining power……..and while the road to ‘hell’ is paved with good intentions, it is also built upon the bones of usury and soaked with the blood of violence.
Goddess knows, abuse of power and power-over is at the root of the hubris responsible for global destruction and suppression, but, with the help of our friends and allies we can turn this around. Suppression of the feminine is failing now and the Goddess is hard on the heals of its perpetrators.
Pluto and Uranus will work for us and with us through this if we undertake to return the Earth to balance and participate in the journey. As a journey to the core this means both applying truth and being prepared to work beyond the mundane, outside of the norm – this is a powerful time to call upon the sacred powers for assitance.
It was Ariadne, whose name means the ‘Most Holy’, who gave Theseus the help he needed, the red thread with which he found his way home, out of the labyrinth. If we pick up the thread, the patterns we create through making that journey describe the spiralling path of creation within the circle of Life.
It is nye on 50 years since the 11th lunation began at 0° Scorpio, in 1965, when Uranus and Pluto joined in mid Virgo, beginning their current cycle. We are midway through the waxing phase of this cycle and the first square is now reaching its sixth alignment, the penultimate one.
The previous Uranus Pluto cycle began in 1850-1 when they joined in the last degree of Aries and first degree of Taurus, exactly opposite the October 2014 solar eclipse point. This was the era in which the foundations of contemporary orthodox science was birthed, but, it also saw the birth of one Nikola Tesla who built upon and developed those foundations with pure Uranian genius – a truely Promethian figure in his work with source energies, unorthodox and inspired. He spoke of receiving knowledge from otherworlds, of being in communication with beings in the Sun, and he too became the victim of ‘powers’ that opposed the revolutionary freedom his technologies offered. It is no coincidence that his legacy is resurgent now. There is an exquisite beauty in Tesla’s technologies that is not lost on us.
There is a linking thread through Tesla which unveils another layer of magic woven into the story unfolding now. It is revealed through the conjunction of Uranus and Pluto in 1850 on the cusp of Taurus. Taurus is associated with the Bull, and, in more ancient times with the Minotaur which Theseus overcame at the centre of the labyrinth. Theseus love, Ariadne, had the knowledge of mazes and labyrinths, which means she was an initiate into the mysteries. Her father, King Minos of Crete, gave her the task of overseeing the sacrifices made in its inner sanctum, so she knew full well what Theseus needed to make the journey. The more ancient cretan greek form of her name has the root hagne meaning ‘sacred’, an echo of the word ‘hag’ which became subverted from its original meaning of ‘wise woman’, and, in the same way, the hellenistic ‘Most Holy’ is simply an epithet applied in the re-writing of the story – her true name was ‘Mistress of the Labyrinth’.
Her astrological embodiment in our times is in the asteroid Ariadne, #43 if you want to find her in your charts, but, her asteroid was also discovered during the opening stages of the 1850 U/P cycle on April 15th 1857, less than one year after Tesla was born, when Pluto and Uranus were both still in Taurus. However, in astrology lore we find her story is associated with the houses belonging to the water signs, Cancer, Scorpio and Pisces, and, the lore also tells us, it is in the eight house, the house of Scorpio, that the meaning of the process embodied in her story is revealed. Scorpio is associated with the labyrinth in Ariadne’s story, its mid-point. With the eclipse activating Scorpio, the sign of hidden meanings, we can now see why her story is so important to us.
So, we come back to the eclipse, and the occultation of solar energy. Venus is entering that zone showing us that we too must enter the journey with heart and appreciation for the beauty and poigniancy of our undertakings. She will emerge having become transformed, as the ‘evening star’, re-entering the world as the Sun sets, signalling the coming light of the stars. And, all this while she will be working with Mars, in sextile, who stands at the gateway to the Solstice point, close on the Galactic centre, the heart of our spiral galaxy. For now Mars reminds us of our fealty to the role of ‘guardian of the nexus point’. He is the consort of the Goddess. As preparation for entry into Capricorn this gives pause for thought. Mars is fast moving now and has no fear in approaching Pluto….neither must we.
The Sun is a mystery to us still, and, the Moon tells us that if the darkening of the Sun’s light indicates a gateway, it is as an opportunity to enter into the inner sanctum where much deeper truths may be found and known, and the hidden presence of a life-force yet to be encountered integrated within our time. There are wise beings tending that place, guardians of our own human flame of knowledge and potential…….if we take up the challenge they will reveal themselves to us.
Make your circle strong!
‘Spiderwoman’ ~ Susan Seddon Boulet;
……this image has been combined with the spiral pattern of a 200 million year old Nautilus shell.
‘Rocky Valley Labyrinth, Tintagel’ ~ this is an ancient carving, millenia old, that follows the traditional pattern of what has become known as the ‘cretan labyrinth’ although its form is found globally and has long association with the goddess.