Sunday, December 2, 2007
December begins with an interesting mutual exchange between Mercury in Scorpio and a retrograding Mars in Gemini. As these planets are not of the same camp, the energy is somewhat uncomfortable. Mars in Gemini tends to activate our desires on a mental level, and when retrograde it manifests more internally. Perhaps we are dwelling on things that aren't working quite the way we want them to, but the retrograde action might make us less likely to act -- at least until it goes stationary direct on January 30, 2008. Mercury in Scorpio likes to go deep, especially on a psychological level. It may bring up repressed issues, especially in the realms that Scorpio influences, such as the underworld, sex, death, war, and ultimately spiritual transformation; or it could bring up solutions from the deep by means of quick insight, intuitive strategy, or revolutionary research. Mercury is a fast moving planet and changes signs by December 17, 2007 when it joins Jupiter in Sagittarius at the galactic center in opposition to the retrograding Mars. At this time the insights gained during its sojourn through Scorpio might be questioned, but its position with the philosophical giant Jupiter grants the bigger picture.
New Moon December 9, 2007
The new Moon in its sign of debilitation, Scorpio, falls in the nakshatra of Jyestra. There is a nice synchronicity of themes between the Mars-Mercury exchange and this new moon in Jyestra, as Scorpio is ruled by Mars and Jyestra is ruled by Mercury. When a theme is repeated in various combinations, it is like a big arrow or exclamation point signifying an important message.
Jyestra means the "eldest" or "most senior." Some scholars suggest that originally there were only 18 nakshtras and Jyestra was the last. I believe it may also have a deeper astronomical reference, like the oldest part of our galaxy. It precedes Mula, which means "root" and the home of the galactic center. It is the last step before we come back to a rebirth at the root, or Vishnuabi, Vishnu's belly button, the center from which our entire galaxy grew (see previous posts for more on Vishnuabi).
Jyestra consists of three stars, including the bright red star Antares, which means "rival of Mars" because it was sometimes confused with the red planet. Its connection to the god of war may be in part to the energy, or shakti, conferred by this asterism: arahana shakti, the power to rise, conquer, and give courage in battle. The deity associated with Jyestra is Indra, the god of war and weather whose weapons are the thunderbolt, bow, net and hook. His most notable battle was with the asura Vritra, a terrible dragon, who stole all the water of the world for himself. After a mighty battle, Indra sliced open the asura releasing all the hoarded water, and thus he became known as a dragon slayer. The theme of snakes and dragons is also represented in Jyestra's symbol, an earring or circular talisman. Both of these objects are reminiscent of the ouroboros, a coiled snake consuming its tail, representing ideas of circularity, unity, and infinity. Another alternate symbol for this nakshatra is an umbrella, and suggests it gives shelter from the elements of rain, wind and sun -- natural forces under the command of Indra.
Astronomically Jyestra also aligns with a mass of dark dust clouds that mark the early borders of the galactic center. This Dark Rift or Serpent's mouth is part of the constellation Ophiucus, the serpent holder. Historically Ophiucus was also known as the 13th Astrological Sign. Interesting that it is also seen as the "eldest" sign in Western as well as Vedic traditions. Johannes Kepler depicted an allegorical and astronomical Ophiucus in the drawing posted above. Ophiucus is also know as the location of the last visible supernova witnessed and documented by astronomers like Kepler in 1604, at the end of the 12 baktun, and beginning of the last and 13th baktun of the Mayan Calendar that ends in 2012.
Many ancient traditions associate this area of the night sky as a significant portal to change. In the drawing from a Pictish sculpture (ancient north Britain), a snake may represent the Milky Way, with its axis marked by two phallic poles. Notice how one points down, and one points up. Could this be alluding to the ascent and descent of consciousness as defined by the Great Year?
The reference to serpent bearers, or torch bearers is also seen in the Mithraic tradition, a Roman mystery cult of warriors. Mithras was a warrior god also connected to Ophiucus. Images depict him slaying a cosmic bull surrounded by astrological symbols that reveal his power over time and the heavens. Notice the two torch bearers in the Roman fresco of Mithras slaying the cosmic bull. Their torches have replaced the phallic poles, but they mark the same place in space as the Pictish symbols.
Ancient Vedic seers recognized this place in space as a marker for shifts in consciousness. Like the solstice cycles, it marks a galactic cycle pointing to a time of darkness before the return of the light, perhaps as some 2012 enthusiasts suggest a time of shifting from Kali Yuga to Satya Yuga. See what comes up with this new moon, and release any shadow issues in preparation for a full moon that will be aligned with the galactic center and 4 other planets.
Full Moon December 23, 2007
During the Full Moon on December 23rd, the Sun, Mercury, Jupiter, and Pluto with be aligned along the Milky Way axis with the full Moon and Mars in Gemini. There is a polarization of "spiritual" planets (Sun, Jupiter, Mercury) versus "willful" or emotional planets (Moon, Mars, Pluto). Where do you fall between the two? Or are you in the process of integrating these aspects of self? This full moon may reveal how our desire and will are aligned -- or not aligned-- with galactic consciousness.
The emotional energy of the Full Moon in Gemini in the nakshatra Ardra is heightened due to its conjunction with desire-driven Mars. Ardra's symbol is the human head and represents the emphasis on the mind and thinking. Its primary motivation is kama, desire, and its power is yatna shakti, or effort. Ardra is connected with intense activity, passionate thinking, enthusiasm and an urge for expansion. The combination of this Ardra Full Moon with a retrograding Mars indicates there will be a lot of thinking about what we want. And as Ardra is ruled by the planet of obsession, Rahu, we may want more than is realistically possible. A recently retrograding Saturn in Leo could bring in some disappointment if we are not aligned with "right" understanding, ie. universal energies.
Ardra consists of several of the stars of Orion, including Betelgeuse and the fixed star Sirius, which some scholars believe is a companion star to our own sun in a binary system. In a lovely rendering of channeled initiations, Virginia Essene and Irving Feurst reveal the energetic blessings of seven major stars. As conscious beings and/or spiritual masters, each star transmits wisdom and knowledge to the Earth. They describe Betelgeuse as offering the blessing of Expanded Soul Awareness and Sirius the blessings of amplified and glorified Christ Consciousness (for those of you who like me bristle at using "Christ" Consciousness, they also use Universal Love). As this full moon occurs in between the winter solstice and Christmas eve, perhaps we will glimpse the true meaning and importance of this time of year, when the Milky Way rises aligning the galactic center with our Sun.
Saturday, November 3, 2007
I see myself as a huge fiery comet, a shooting star. Everyone stops, points up and gasps "Oh look at that!" Then- whoosh, and I'm gone...and they'll never see anything like it ever again... and they won't be able to forget me- ever. ~ Jim Morrison
When beggars die there are no comets seen; The heavens themselves blaze forth the death of princes. ~ Shakespeare, Julius Caesar II
Historically astrologers have described comets as evil omens, heralding cataclysmic events, sudden political upheaval, and even the death of kings. An astronomer would define the intermittent appearance of this phenomenon as a relatively small extraterrestrial body consisting of a frozen mass that travels around the sun in a highly elliptical orbit. The word comet stems from the Latin cometes meaning long-haired, describing the characteristic tail of a comet that develops the closer it gets to the Sun. So why would the ancients attribute the sudden appearance of a hairy ball of light with doom and gloom. Well history is filled with accounts of the observation of comets that occurred simultaneously with all sorts of upheavals, as well as births of kings and leaders. Any unusual light body would have been interpreted as a message from the heavens, and of course kings were seen as the expression of God on earth.
For the second time this year a comet has appeared in the night skies. Last winter Comet McNaught lit up the evening sky as it passed in front of the starry back drop of the constellation Aquila, the Eagle. I remember watching its light as it was revealed in the Western sky at sunset, and coincidently observed three eagles fly by my lakeside abode. At that time the synchronicity struck me as quite foreboding, and sure enough a few weeks later I experienced upheaval in my own life. But even more disturbing than my own drama, the world experienced the loss of three "kings": James Brown, Gerald Ford, and Sadam Hussein.
In late October, Comet 17P/Holmes appeared and astronomers focused their telescopes on the brightening space snowball. The comet was first discovered in 1892 by Edwin Holmes. While conducting regular observations of the Andromeda Galaxy (M31), Holmes observed similar outbursts and magnitude changes as are now occurring. (And once again on a personal level, I had just received information about Andromeda during an October meditation. Far out!) On October 24, 2007 Comet Holmes shocked sky watchers with a spectacular eruption, brightening almost a million-fold from 17th to 2.5th magnitude in a matter of hours.
Astrologically speaking Comet Holmes is transiting the constellation Perseus, currently near the fixed star Mirfak. Perseus and Andromeda were part of a group first written about by the ancient astronomer Aratus in his book Phaenomena circa 275 BCE. As part of a group of northern stars called the royal family, Perseus is the Prince, and Andromeda the Princess. The constellations are connected by stories about horses and heads (Medusa), slayings, and rescues (from dragons/reptiles). What could that mean for today's royals?
As you may see in the above image of the comet's projected path, Holmes loops around the stars of Perseus. It first encounters the fixed star Mirfak, which Brady's Book of Fixed Stars describes as representing young, male energy. Its expression could be one of increasing vitality, or inducing potential recklessness or rashness of action. In late January, Holmes meets up with the fixed star Algol, or Ras al-Ghul as it was known to the Arabs meaning Head of the Demon. It may be a reference to the Medusa's head which Perseus severed and used to slay the dragon as he rescued Andromeda. In any case,according to Brady ancient writers described it as "the most malefic star in the heavens, causing hangings, death by the loss of one's head, and any other foul, demonic deed that could befall the human race." Let's hope our young royals have a good astrologer handy to make sure they don't do something rash and lose their heads.
Thursday, November 1, 2007
November begins with the completion of the last Mercury retrograde cycle of 2007. Mercury makes its station today in Virgo at 3:59 pm PDT. Although Mercury began its retrograde in Libra, it fell back into the late of degrees of its sign of exhaltation, Virgo, on October 30th. In Vedic astrology, a retrograding exhalted planet brings a reversal of that exhaltation, and actually debilitates it (and when a debilitated planet is retrograde it becomes exhalted, called neecha banga raja yoga). This reversal of energy effects the things that Mercury rules, like the lungs, the nervous system, communication and commerce. Personally my lungs keep getting tested by the wide array of fall viruses, and the things I tried to ceremonially let go of on October 30th in a fire ceremony all came back to me the next day. Luckily I know that this set back is temporary and look forward to the reversal of the reversal this afternoon. When Mercury stations in Virgo it will be amped up on stellar steroids. Full speed ahead folks. It remains in Virgo until Monday, November 4th when it re-enters Libra and returns the point of initial retrograde on November 17th.
Venus in Virgo November 3 - November 30, 2007
Venus leaves the sign of Leo and goes into its sign of debilitation on Saturday, November 3. Fortunately it will be associated with an exhalted Mercury which assists in another neecha banga raja yoga-- reversal of debiliation. PLUS by the time Mercury changes signs again on Monday, the two inner planets will mutually exchange signs, Mercury in Venus' sign of Libra, and Venus in Mercury's sign of Virgo, stimulating yet another neecha banga raja yoga until November 27th. Venus will only spend three days in debilitation, which is great news after experiencing the intense energetic fluctuations during her long retrograde and participation in the eclipse cycle last September.
New Moon November 9th/Full Moon November 24
The New Moon occurs at 3:03 pm PST in the sign of Libra in the nakshatra Vishaka. Vishaka contains four stars which form the left half of the familiar Libran scales. In the Vedic tradition these star were described as forming the shape of forked branch and represent a large tree whose shade and branches provide protection for others. Other symbols associated with Vishaka are the triumphal arch decorated with leaves, a representation of marriage in India, and the potter's wheel. Both marriage and the fine arts are attributes of Libra. Vishaka's shakti power is to achieve many and various fruits in life, vyapani shaki. It is very fixated and goal oriented, and under its influence one must carefully choose the appropriate goal. The deity who is associated with Vishaka is the chief demi-God Indra, who is sometimes depicted in Puranic texts as determined, fixated, and offensive. He is a Dionysisan character who drowns himself in women, wine and pleasure and thus this moon can be associated with alcohol and intoxication. Although the energy of a new moon may be low, this new moon occur on Venus' day, Friday, and folks may be more sociable and drawn to pleasurable experiences.
The full moon on November 24th occurs in the nakshatra Krittika near its exhaltation point. Krittika is another determined nakshatra. Its symbols are the flame, axe or razor that have the power to burn or cut away negativity to get to the deepest truth, dahana shakti. The deities associated with Krittika are Karttikaya and Agni. In the Vedic tradition the six visible (seven with a telescope) stars of the Pleiades are associated with the nakshatra Krittika. According to one of the many legends, the seven wifes (how did the ancients "see" the seventh wife/star) of the ancient Seers hid Shiva's son Karttikaya, also called Skanda, from the demons and trained him in the various systems of knowledge. His destiny was to destroy the demons and return heaven to the Gods. Thus the Pleiades, or Krittika, is a celestial training ground where one receives instruction on one's life purpose. It is also a place of refuge. The chart for this full moon has a Libra ascendant with Venus placed in the 12th house and the moon placed in the 8th house. The 8th and 12th houses are moksha houses. Moksha means liberation, and in the Vedic tradition liberation of soul is often associated with the loss or retreat from the material world. I would use the energy of this full moon to seek refuge and instruction through meditation as it promises to give new insight and liberation for our souls.
Mars Retrograde November 15, 2007 - January 30, 2008
Mars entered Gemini on September 16, 2007 and will go retrograde on November 15th at 12:24 am PST opposite the moon in Sagittarius. In general Mars, or Mangala, rules our physical energy, what drives us, and how we go after we go after what we want. Originally its symbol was depicted the cross of matter above the circle of spirit by alchemists, but that cross has been pointed outward and upward into an arrow. Western and Vedic astrologers traditionally associate Mars with war and aggression. However there are Vedic traditions that indicate the arrow expresses the direction of contemplation towards the supreme goal. According to Gary Gomes, "one of the most overlooked roles of Mars is its role in spiritual development. Mars is the planet of those who avoid rebirth . . . it is rapidly acting, rather than violent. . . it is also in charge of logic, because logic is the intellectual weapon employed to win arguments. . . If it has a goal and a service to pursue, [Mars] is a truly wonderful planet, capable of delivering us from our worst enemies[or rebirth :)]." So whatever latent energy is inside the circle of spirit, it may be directed outward under the influence of Mars.
Mars goes retrograde every two years when it is closest to earth and opposite the Sun. Here we we have Mars, the planet of desire, opposite the Sun, the planet representing ego. And as retrograde planets are more powerful, our desires may outweigh the wisdom of a healthy ego. When Mars turns retrograde things may happen to show you that you need to put the breaks on and take a closer look at what you are doing. Re-examine your inner motives regarding why you are acting in a certain way. Are you functioning consciously or are you letting primitive impulses dominate your life? If you have overworked yourself, let frustration and anger build up, or denied your desires in any way, these may all surface during Mars retrograde to be confronted, integrated or released. Thus Mars retrograde time to reassess how we operate in the world, and to design a plan of how to carry it all out once it goes direct. It is not a time to start new projects, but finish and revamp old ones.
During this Mars retrograde period, the red planet is transiting Mercury's mutable sign of Gemini. As Gemini rules communication, the thinking mind and nervous system, we can expect a lot of changes in how we communicate our desires and how we spend our mental energy. There is an interesting synchronicity and alignment with the lunation symbolism of determination, fixation on goals, and cutting away of negativity. When Mars stations it will be in the nakshatra Ardra, ruled by the planet of obsession, Rahu. The primary motivation is kama, desire, and its power is yatna shakti,or effort. In particular it is the power of making gains in life through greater effort and struggle. It will require all the determination we observe during the lunation cycle to carry us through the unusually long Mars retrograde period. The presiding deity of Ardra is Rudra, the fierce form of Shiva. Rudra is associated with thunder and rainstorms. Ardra is connected with intense activity, passionate thinking, enthusiasm and an urge for expansion. So how will those drives be effected when Mars reverses. As "Ardra" means "moist" and is depicted as a teardrop, will we be crying tears of frustration? Or will these tears clear away the stale energy, like a rainstorm clears the air, leaving us with a renewed sense of clarity?
Physically Gemini rules the lungs, and Mars rules the blood, inflammation, and fevers; so this combination may indicate a surge in virulent colds and flus this holiday season. In particular we may see lingering respiratory pathogens, like coughs, that may last for months. I would advise everyone to re-enforce your cellular fortress, the immune system. The best way for you to protect yourself is to avoid sugar, which takes down the immune system for hours. In addition you may strengthen cellular walls to block out pathogens by taking essential fatty acids like fish oils, vitamin C, immune supplements, natural anti-virals like garlic. Learn how to preserve your energy and get plenty of rest. (And remember if you do get sick do not take iron --Mars' metal-- as it will only strengthen the wee beasties.) Don't let your desire (Mars) to be part of all the festivities make you sick.
Jupiter in Sagittarius November 21, 2007
As Jupiter completes its journey through Scorpio it starts its karmic unwinding of the Gandantic knots between November 8 - December 5, 2007. (For more on Gandanta see previous posts.) The great benefic, Jupiter is a significator of happiness, knowledge, learning and expansion. When it changes signs from Scorpio into its own sign of Sagittarius on November 21, 2007, it promises to bring hope and quest for the truth. In its home/ohm sign Jupiter becomes more powerful and is able to express theses innate qualities. But in the nakshatras of Jyestra and Mula it may have a little bite. Jytestha is ruled by the deity Indra, the dragon slayer, whom we discussed above influencing the new moon. Under this nakshatra the chief motivation is to conquer and to gain supremacy. The presiding deity of the following nakshatra, Mula, is Nritti – the goddess of destruction. Nritti is one aspect of Kali, the destroyer of illusions, and her purpose here is to help us break apart and destroy things, making room for a new creation based on a new foundation. Mula may inflict pain, but it is intended to keep us on the right track to God-realization.
Jupiter conjoins Pluto on December 11, 2007. By the winter solstice Jupiter, Pluto, Mercury and the Sun will be drawing down energy from the Galactic Center, enhanced two days later when a full moon conjoins Mars in Gemini. This powerful alignment may present political or fanatical religious conflict destroying things that aren't working. At the same time it may indicate a window of opportunity when we may be more open to receiving and understanding the messages from the source of life, the Mula or root of the galaxy, the Galactic Center.
Monday, October 1, 2007
Compared with the previous months, October's astrological line up is calm. The new moon in Virgo on October 10 falls in the healing nakshatra of Hasta, symbolized by the hand. Hasta's power is the ability to manifest what we are seeking and to place it in our hands, hasta sthapaniya agama shakti. Make sure you set clear intentions and be ready to receive with an open hand, while trying not to control with a closed fist. Virgo is ruled by the planet Mercury, and on the following day Mercury stations and goes retrograde thus increasing the effect of this lunation on the thinking mind.
Mercury will transit its third and last retrograde in an air sign this year, Libra. It will be retrograde between October 11 and November 1, 2007 in the nakshatras Swati and Chitra. Swati's shakti, pradhvamsa, is the power to scatter like the wind. Ruled by the deity Vayu, the god of wind, air, breath and prana, Swati promises change. If you are flexible and able to bend with the wind, this retrograde cycle promises to purify and cleanse. The goddess of learning and scholarship, Saraswati, is also associated with Swati. This period would be a great time to review what we know, or think we know. As retrograde planets are often more powerful, we may develop new insights, receive new information, or reassess old belief systems during this time. Mercury will retrograde back to and station in the nakshatra Chitra which gives the power to accumulate merit. Revisionists may find a more receptive audience at this time.
The full moon on October 25, 2007 will be in Aries, in my favorite nakshatra, Ashwini. The Ashwins are the twin physicians of the gods who bring light, happiness and bliss to all that they touch. This second healing lunation of the month promises quick cures and rejuvenation of the body, mind and spirit. Miracles are associated with this lunar mansion. The Moon's opposition to Mercury will cast an extremely abstract but intuitive light on our thinking minds, which will followed a few days later by Neptune's direct station on Halloween and Mercury's direct station on November 1, 2007. Neptune is the planet of otherworldly beauty and illusion. The end of the month promises to be a period when the communication between the veils will be more accessible than ever. What comes through may be spellbinding, so be sure to use a clear, open mind to discern guidance from illusion.
Saturday, September 8, 2007
After spending the past 44 days retrograding through the stellar influences of Leo and Cancer, Venus stations and turns direct today at 9:14 am PDT. The evening star has completed its shamanic journey behind the sun and has re-emerged as the morning star. This phenomenon was observed by ancient sky-watchers and mystics, and became the basis of many myths involving death and resurrection. Christians, Mayans, and Hindus all describe the return of the morning star as symbolic of the return of their teachers.
A Venus cycle includes 5 retrogrades over 8 years, cutting a path in the shape of a star or pentagram. The 5/8 ratio has captivated astronomers, mathematicians, and astrologers because it relates to the Fibonacci Series and PHI. The Fibonacci numbers are named after Leonardo of Pisa, known as Fibonacci, although they had been described nearly 1000 years earlier in India by Pingala in Chandra-Shastra.
The Fibonacci Series is a sequence of numbers that when the sum is added to the previous number, a formula correlating to growth and harmonic cycles develops-- for example 0, 0+1 = 1, 1+1=2, 2+1=3, 3+2=5, 5+3=8, 8+5=13 ect. When the sum is divided by the previous number the result is the golden ration, or PHI -- ie. 8/5 = 1.6 ~ 1.618. This ratio is found throughout the natural world such as in the growth pattern of plants. Flowers develop petals following the sequence 3,5,8,13,21,34,55 etc. For example, white calla lily has 1 petal, euphorbia has two, trillium three, and columbine has five, the most common number of petals in the flower world. The sunflower beautifully illustrations the spiraling ratios with it 34 petals and 55 seeds. Music also is rooted in the Fibonacci series: There are 13 notes in the span of any note through its octave. A scale is comprised of 8 notes, of which the 5th and 3rd notes create the basic foundation of all chords, and are based on whole tone which is 2 steps from the root tone, that is the 1st note of the scale.
In astrology Venus rules the fine arts, where the Fibonacci series and the golden ratio have been known and utilized for thousands of years. Ancient monuments were designed to fit in with nature, and thus reflected the golden ratio. Artists of the Renaissance used these principles in developing perfect composition that reflected nature and the divine order.
And according to recent studies, there is evidence that natural rhythms of the earth, such as the Schumann frequency, and human rhythms, such as brainwave patterns are connected in part due to these ratios. Human consciousness expands according to the sequence (1,2,3Hz Delta/sleep, 5,8 Hz Alpha/meditation, 13 Hz Beta/awake) and if researchers like Gregg Braden are correct the Schumann frequency may shift from 8 Hz to 13 Hz. In certain sound healing practices such as Acutonics, the frequency for Venus is a harmonic of 13 Hz. As the Mayan calendar is based on Venus cycles, and its end date aligns with the completion of the 2004 Venus pentagonal cycle, I can't help but wonder if the coming earth changes will raise our frequency to match that of Venus.
Of all symmetric geometric shapes, none represent so concisely the principles of PHI than the pentacle or five pointed star within a circle. This is probably so because the ratio of PHI is first derived from the square root of five. The diagram of the 5 retrograde loops of the Venus cycle is a symbol of the Five Holy Kumaras(4 Exoteric + 3 Esoteric - 2 Fallen = 5). According to the Secret Doctrine, these Promeathean-like beings gave the spark of intelligence and the seed of individuality to humanity. Thus Venus is associated with growth, fertility, and creativity.
In Vedic astrology the planet Venus is known as Shukra, meaning "white" or "bright" in Sanskrit, as well as "semen". In her lower aspects Venus governs sensuality and is the embodiment of love. Shukra is a male deity, the son of Brighu who was one of the Prajapatis and a Vedic Sage. Venus is the Daitya-Guru, the teacher of the asuras, rules the arts, bestows the wisdom of the Vedas, and has the power to raise the dead. The esoteric glyph for Venus is the circle of spirit above the cross of manifestation. According to Bepin Behari:
The circle represents the spiritual essence evolving through manifestation. It shows the wholeness of latent faculties of man to be developed during the course of his evolution . . . The life-giving principle expressed in the outer manifestation is symbolized by the encircled space. Venus, Mars and Mercury are concerned with this life-giving force. The Venusian impulse is important for generating, preserving and nourishing the various life forms on Earth. . . The cross represents the churning of the ocean. When two opposing forces combine together to activate electrical energy, there is much activity and the magnetic field becomes high charged. In the cross symbol, the masculine energy is presented by the vertical line, and the feminine by the horizontal line, together represent manifestation. Wherever life unfolds and any form of creation takes place, one finds the interplay of these positive and negative forces. Placed under the circle the cross denotes the Divine Essence involved in the creative process. The impulse generated by Venus always creates fundamental change and brings forth new manifestation. . . the sexual urge is merely one of the various forces generated by the churning process.
Thus in its higher aspect, the divine is made manifest by the impulse generated by Venus.
So what happens when Venus is retrograde? As I mentioned in previous posts, many Vedic astrologers believe that retrograde planets are more powerful as they often indicate a karmic result. They may be functioning to fulfill some karmic debt or promise or to clear up affairs from the past. This past retrograde took Venus from 8 degrees of Leo in the Nakshatra Magha to 22 degrees Cancer in the Nakshatra of Ashlesha. As it crossed through the critical Gandantic transition of fire to water (3 degrees Leo to 27 degrees Cancer), it started to unravel the karmic knot. It will return over these degrees between September 22 - October 2, 2007, and finally return to its point of retrograde on October 11, 2007. During this time issues that were brought to light this summer may finally find resolution, and like the promise of a Fibonacci sequence, show growth on our spiraling journey of spiritual evolution.
Saturday, September 1, 2007
On the day before the lunar eclipse, Canada received its first crop circle of 2007. Apparently simple compared to its UK counterparts, I can't help but wonder if it is an interdimensional comment on the eclipse. The symbol for Shatabishak, the nakshatra of the moon during this eclipse, is an empty circle enclosing space. In sacred geometry the circle represents wholeness, cycles, and timelessness. Of course most crop circles begin with the circle and expand into intricate mandalas, which makes the quiet appearance of this one even more intriguing.
Friday, August 31, 2007
September begins in the middle of an eclipse period. The two week period between the eclipse is often filled with dynamic shifts and changes that have an effect on the following six months -- until the next eclipse period. The upcoming weeks may be intense, dizzying, and eye-opening for many of us as we shift up a notch on our spiraling and evolving paths.
Full Lunar Eclipse, August 28, 2007
September begins under the waning influence of a spectacular full lunar eclipse. In the wee hours of August 28th, the north node, Rahu, caste a shadow over the full moon in the constellation of Aquarius, the Water Bearer. According to Hindu mythology the Water Bearer is depicted as the physician of the gods, who pours the divine nectar of immortality from his sacred medicinal jar. The Nakshatra associated with this part of the night sky is Shatabishak, meaning the "hundred healers", or "hundred physicians." An alternate translation is "hundred flowers" which may refer to the crown chakra, through which this asterism conveys its message, as well as knowledge of herbal and flower remedies.
Each nakshatra has a shakti, or energy of intention, associated with it. Shatabishak bestows bheshaja shakti, or the power of healing. The opportunity for healing and receiving the cosmic soma was high that evening. Personally the eclipse occurred exactly on my ascendant offering me the opportunity to learn more about my dharma, as well as to experience a surge of energy through my crown chakra that kept me up all night. (I heard countless stories of restless sleep this week from my patients, as well as from my brother-in-law who has the same Shatabishak ascendant as me.)
Also known as the Veiling Star, Shatabishak is ruled by the eclipsing dragon's head, Rahu, which makes its transit over this full moon even more powerful, intoxicating, enlightening, and obscuring. As Prash Travidi describes: Secrecy is the one quality which separates Shatabishak from other Nakshatras. . . in fact [it] derives all most all its power from what is hidden. Whether it is the herbs in the ocean or secret formulas of nature's functioning, Shatabishak always tries to gain access to what is hidden and in doing so attains its power. Shatabishak is not always very ready to share the hidden secrets it has discovered and tries to hide them just like the ocean covers up many a treasure.
So what was unveiled for you during this eclipse? Politically there has been some significant changes as resignations from the current administration are being announced, while at the same time the details of which are surely being guarded. Will we ever know the real story?
Partial Solar Eclipse September 11, 2007
As eclipses cycles dance around the earth effecting our destiny like a cosmic double helix, they always occur in pairs at the height of flow (full moon/lunar eclipse) and ebb of flow (new moon/solar eclipse). The next phase of this cycle is a partial solar eclipse on September 11th at 6:44 am PDT. In this case, Ketu crosses a corner of the Sun casting a different type of shadow upon the earth. Whereas Rahu is expansive and extrovertive, Ketu is contracting and introverted. Ketu is a detaching force that can give spiritual liberation from the game of life. It is currently in the sign of Leo and nakshatra of Purva Phalguni. Purva Phalguni means "fruit of the tree" and its symbol is the hammock representing rest and recuperation. Another symbol is the Shiva Lingam indicating the power of creative procreation -- prajanana shakti. It is ruled by Venus and thus manifests in sensual pleasure and sociable behavior. As this new moon is being eclipsed by the contracting energy of Ketu, we might find ourselves in need of some rest and relaxation if we over do it during the previous weekend. In addition, somber Saturn is also involved in this eclipse which drains the fun out of the Leonine energy. As Leo rules kings and leaders, it will be interesting to see how our president handles all the resignations and political power shifts. The fact that the solar eclipse falls on the anniversary of 9/11 will only intensify the growing disillusionment with the "official" story.
Pluto Stationary Direct September 7, 2007
Pluto goes stationary direct on September 7, 2007 and will head towards its last contact with the Galactic Center on October 28, 2007. Please see previous post on Transits of Pluto and Jupiter to the Galactic Center for more information.
Venus Stationary Direct September 8, 2007
Venus will go stationary direct on Saturday, September 8, 2007 at the same degree of Cancer that she was at around June 23, 2007 in the nakshatra of Ashlesha. This nakshatra is in the constellation of the Hydra, the female water snake. Ashlesha means "the entwiner" and is called the "clinging star". As I mentioned in a previous post on Venus retrograde, this period we may feel blocked from receiving the things we love, perhaps due to clinging to our old ideas of what we want. During the retrograde period we may have had time to reassess our desires and dreams, and once Venus goes direct, we will have the energy to manifest an upgraded version of what we want. Venus returns to the point of retrograde on October 11th during which time this our new dreams may come to fruition.
Mars enters Gemini September 16, 2007 - April 27, 2008
Mars will enter Gemini on September 16, 2007 and will be opposite Pluto and the Galactic Center around September 20, 2007. It will also undergo a retrograde cycle, which begins on November 15, 2007. With Mars retrograde we reassess how we go after what we want. Following on the tail of the Venus retrograde cycle, it seems very karmic and appropriate. This an extraordinary long period for Mars to be transiting Mercury's mutable sign meaning that there will be a lot of changes in how we expend energy, especially mental energy as Mercury rules this sign. I will post more about this astrological period next month.
Autumnal Equinox September 23, 2007
The Autumnal Equinox occurs on Sunday, September 23, 2007 and is followed by the Harvest Full Moon September 26, 2007. The Harvest Moon is no ordinary full moon and it behaves in a special way. Throughout the year the Moon rises about 50 minutes later each day. But near the autumnal equinox, the difference in the local time of moon rise is only 30 minutes. This comes in handy for farmers who are working long days to harvest their crops before autumn. The extra hours of light projected by the full Moon closest to the equinox is what gives the Harvest Moon its name. And as it is the first full moon following a lunar eclipse, watch to see what you harvest.
Friday, August 10, 2007
One of my favorite books and movies from childhood is Mark Twain's A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court. It combined the science fiction theme of time travel with my favorite legendary period of Camelot. The main character, Hank Morgan (played by Bing Crosby in the 1949 movie),overthrows Merlin as the most powerful magician because he was able to block out the rays of the sun. This Connecticut Yankee somehow knew the eclipse tables and that a total solar eclipse would occur in England in 528 AD, and used them to demonstrate his great power. Eclipses have long been associated with the ursurption of power, with the politics of kings and leaders, and with cycles of death and rebirth. Ancient mythology and modern fiction are filled with examples of their compelling effect on the earth.
An eclipse is defined as an astronomical event in which one celestial object moves into the shadow of another. Although any planet or moon can be involved in an eclipse, here on earth our energetic lives are dramatically shifted during lunar and solar eclipses. A solar eclipse occurs during a new moon when the moon aligns with the one of the nodes and blocks the full light of the sun from the earth, creating a darken daytime sky, and literally shifting the light patterns of the sun. The shadows that are cast on the earth during this time are a carbon copy of the eclipse above. It is rather surreal, and thus associated with psychological disturbances, shadow issues, and fear. A lunar eclipse occurs during a full moon and has a less dramatic effect on light patterns, but does create an eerie red glow on the full moon. It's psychic effects are unpredictable ranging from the gift of new insight to the release of repressed emotions.
The North and South Nodes of the moon are the points where the moon crosses the ecliptic, the sun's path in the sky. The ascending node, called Rahu in Vedic astrology, is where the moon crosses to the north of the ecliptic. The descending node, called Ketu, is where it crosses to the south. Rahu is the head of the dragon, and Ketu is the tail. Because of their ability to swallow the sun (the light of the soul and source of life itself) and moon (the reflected light of consciousness) and then return them imprinted with new information, they are associated with death and rebirth, and thus indicators of karma.
There are many allegorical stories about the lunar nodes. In Hindu mythology, Rahu is a snake that swallows the sun or the moon causing eclipses. According to legend, the asura Rahu drank some of the divine nectar of immortality. Before the nectar could pass his throat, Vishnu/Mohini cut off his head. The head, however, remained immortal as it had already tasted the divine elixir. Because of its desire for divine nectar, Rahu is associated with intoxication and is an indicator of obsession with power and fame (immortality). Rahu on a physical plane gives insatiable desire to achieve, to conquer, and to possess.
Ketu is what remains of the body of Rahu, the headless tail. The lost head symbolizes the loss of the thinking mind. The headless body may also represent an enlightened being who is freed from the thinking mind. As opposed to Rahu's affliction of the mind, Ketu can afflict the body. It is a moksha-karaka, indicator of liberation from the cycle of birth and death. Ketu can bestow great insight and healing ability, or it may place obstacles that ultimately change how one thinks. It brings spiritual tendencies, ascetism and nonattachment to worldly desires and ambitions, and it balances the materialistic compulsion of Rahu with its impulse to enlightenment.
There is a terrific modern myth that exemplify these energies: LOST. Fans of this amazing TV series may recognize the interplay of the archetypal Rahu/Ketu energies expressed in the characters of Jack Shephard and John Locke. Jack is a Rahu type, whose logical mind brings him success as a doctor, but becomes afflicted with fear, alcohol and a blinding obsession to get off the island. Locke, the Ketu type, whose afflicted body is healed on the island, proceeds on the fools journey by using intuition alone. The LOST myth unfolds according to the actions and results of the actions of these two men. This dance with their individual, but intertwining karmas occurs on the ruins of the "Dharma" Initiative. We are never sure who is good or who is bad. Season Finales are like eclipses -- releasing the built up karma and propelling the characters into a new understanding of reality.
Vedic astrologer Komilla Sutton beautifully sums up the opposing influences of eclipses and the Rahu-Ketu dynamic:
Rahu Ketu have twin purpose, one in the mundane life and another in the spiritual life but it is intertwined, like their shadowy nature. Their actions in the material realm are meant so that we change our thoughts and ideas about what we want and desire. What is darkness to a person enmeshed in materialistic ambitions can be powerful spiritual energy for those on the path of Moksha and spiritual enlightenment. The nodes always serves opposing purposes- good and bad, lots and nothing, give and take. Rahu gives, Ketu takes back. The are no straight rules about them. They operate in so many different colours which can lead you to the highest spiritual pinnacle to the greatest financial achievements or vice versa. They can give contrary results. You can never give predictions dealing with surety.
Lunar Eclipse August 28, 2007
A total eclipse of the Moon occurs during the early morning of Tuesday, August 28, 2007. The event is widely visible from the United States and Canada as well as South America, the Pacific Ocean, western Asia and Australia. The Moon will be eclipsed by Rahu in Aquarius. The chart for the event in Seattle has a Cancer rising, which is ruled by the Moon in Aquarius that happens to be placed in the 8th house (hidden things,death) with the planet Uranus. It falls in the Nakshatra of Shatabishak, also known as the "veiling star." What will be unveiled? The deity associated with these stars is Varuna, bearer of cosmic waters. Much has been written about Lunar Eclipses and earthquakes, and as an observer of cycles it seems to me like there is a strong possibility for an earthquake all along the Pacific rim during the two weeks prior and after the actual eclipse. (The earthquake in Peru happened just after this was originally posted.) Ocean storms may also be stirred up. (And it is hurricane season.) I am not a fan of dire predictions, and would rather offer the earth love and gratitude to pray for healing movement rather than destruction.
Solar Eclipse September 11, 2007
The last eclipse of 2007 is a partial solar eclipse at the Moon's descending node in southern Leo. Its visibility is confined to parts of South America, Antarctica and the South Atlantic. The chart for the event shows that the eclipse occurs at the horizon and is tied to the planets Saturn and Mercury. I would listen closely to the words and stories presented by the media at this time. There may be an increase in propaganda that may over-dramatize world or national events, or important information that was hidden may be brought to light. Perhaps the truth of what really happened on the overplayed 911 tragedy will be revealed?
Friday, August 3, 2007
Venus Retrograde, July 27 - September 8
August begins under the influence of a recently retrograding Venus. As the planet of relationships, arts, and pleasure, Venus retrograde slows down the flow of energy to these areas of our lives. We may feel blocked from receiving the things we love. Venus also rules the neck, and I have to say the energy in my neck is not flowing like it should. The remedy for this counterflow is to reflect the energy of a retrograde by "stepping back" to reassess what brings us enjoyment, or how does what brings us enjoyment also bring a pain in the neck? Are the relationships in our lives working? If not, how do we shift energy or our perspectives to be more aligned with a higher aspect of Venus?
Vedic astrology offers wonderful remedial measures, called upayas, for afflicted planets or difficult transits including wearing gemstones and chanting mantra. White crystals, such as diamond and white sapphire, emit a frequency that resonates with Venus. By wearing these crystals we imprint our field with this vibration and thus strengthen the Venus frequency within us. In the Vedic tradition, Venus, Shukra, is the son of the great seer Bhrigu who taught his descendant all spiritual sciences and Vedic scriptures. As Venus rules chanting of mantras, tantra, alchemy and the medical arts, these pursuits are great remedies. Venus retrograde is the perfect time to reconnect with these practices -- especially on Venus' day, Friday. A mantra one might use is: Om shum shukraaye namah.
For a list of planetary mantras and their pronounciation see: http://www.hinduastrology.com/mantrasaudio/index.asp
Saturn in Leo
Saturn continues it journey in the early degree of Leo. As I mentioned in a previous post, Saturn will be at the critical gandanta degrees until August 11, 2007, a day before the new moon in Cancer/Ashlesha. The following week the Sun catches up to Saturn and Saturn starts to lose more strength as it becomes combust on August 21, 2007. And the final week of August involves Saturn in the Lunar eclipse, on August 28, 2007. This period is definitely a time to take it easy, beware of burn out, and practice Saturn's mantra: Om sham shanayisharaaye namah.
The good news for the month is that Jupiter stations and goes direct late on Monday August 6, 2007 opposite an exalted Taurus moon conjunct Mars. As the great benefic, Jupiter is significator of happiness, knowledge, learning and expansion. When it goes direct we may feel more optimistic. The coinciding wide opposition to Mars may encourage us to suddenly ask for what we want. Just make sure not to be overly demanding or expansive because a combust Saturn and retrograde Venus which square the Jupiter-Mars opposition may still bring some unexpected disappointment.
To me the night sky of the summer months is the most spectacular -- if you can actually view it away from the glare of city lights. The galactic center can be seen, as can my favorite star, Vega in the constellation of Lyra. The full moon at the end of July occurred a few degrees from this asterism, with Mars moving into Taurus aligning with the Pleiades. Both of these star systems are associated with old souls who migrated to Earth through stellar portals to assist with the energetic shifts of enlightenment, ascension, and earth changes. I feel a strong connection to Vega, which has been described as the star of sound healers. The Pleiadian constellation is believed to transmit energies to open the heart chakra.
My fascination with Vega, also know as Wega, started with dreams of Wegans landing outside of Seattle. I began to research its mythology and astrological meaning. Vega is a bright star in the constellation of Lyra, the Lyre. This is no ordinary harp, it belonged to Orpheus and thus this constellation is believed to give musical and artistic talents. It is also linked to magic and divine spells. Those who are influenced by it are spellbinding, touched by the other world. It was rising when one of the most charismatic composers of all time, Mozart, was born. Ketu, the south node, indicator of past lives and spiritual liberation aligns with Vega in the 12th house (healing/past lives)of my natal chart. No wonder it feels like home/ohm to me, and no wonder I am drawn to the magic of sound healing.
Vega was the pole star circa 10,000-12,000 BCE, and was then, according to Brady's Book of Stars, called Maat. Maat is the great Egyptian goddess who helped souls move from one life to another. I have always felt a calling to assist the dying cross over. So nearly 13,000 years ago Vega had a direct line of influence as the pole star. This time coincides with the shifting of the yugas to a descending, or sleep, cycle. As most of my earliest past life memories go back to the end of Atlantis and beginning of Egypt, I feel like my soul was drawn to the earth during that time assist in the shift. And now that we may be approaching the ascending half of the yugas, I am here to witness the shift once again and help people WAKE UP. [Are there any other Wegans out there? I'd love to hear from you as there aren't many of us here at this time.]
Most of the star seed tribes that I meet are from the Pleiades and Sirius, whose energy is referenced in many modern media symbols. For example, the term Subaru comes from the Japanese language meaning “unite”, as well as the constellation known in the west as the Pleiades. The Subaru logo is the six visible stars of the Pleiades. Toyota uses the Taurus symbol in its reference to the Pleiades, and Sirius radio shows a dog refering to Sirius, the dog star. Many ancient cultures had creation myths associated with these stars. In the Vedic tradition the six visible stars of the Pleiades are associated with the nakshatra Krittika. According to one of the many legends, the six wifes of the ancient Seers hid Shiva's son Skanda from the demons and trained him in the various systems of knowledge. His destiny was to destroy the demons and return heaven to the Gods. Thus the Pleiades, or Krittika, is a celestial training ground where one receives instruction on one's life purpose. It is also a place of refuge. According to many channeled teachings, some of the oldest root races originate from the star systems of Lyra and after some galactic calamity escaped to Pleiades and established an interstellar portal with the earth.
In 1968 Erik Von Daniken published Chariots of the Gods and opened the world to the idea of alien beings influencing the evolution of primitive humans, as evidenced in the archeological record. Eight years later Zecharia Sitchin presented more evidence gleened from ancient records of Sumeria and even the Bible itself. In The Twelfth Planet he describes a man-made planet, Niburu that is inhabited by our extraterrestrial ancestors, the Nephilim, who return to earth every 3600 years to see how their off world project is going. Nibiru has an orbit that is perpendicular to the ecliptic of our solar system, so we cannot see if from our viewpoint until it get close enough to show up like a glowing star.
A fellow astrologer recently forwarded an intriguing article to my meditation group. "Scientists Now Know" describes one theory on why our solar system is aligned at an odd angle to the Milky Way. (See http://www.viewzone.com/milkyway.html). This new astronomical theory suggests that our solar system originated from another galaxy, the Sagittarius Dwarf Galaxy, joining and merging with the Milky Way. We may actually come from the stardust of another galaxy. This possibility raises so many questions! Could the earth actually be the alien world? And are the chariots of the gods filled with native Milky Wayans who are trying to assist our converging solar system to assimilate the frequencies of the Milky Way galaxy?
Saturday, July 28, 2007
I just returned from a Yoga Nidra meditation class. Yoga Nidra is sometimes referred to as the yoga of sleep, but it is far more than that. It is one of the deepest meditations. It cultivates a stillpoint of the mind so that one can be in the deepest sleep vibration while conscious.
One of the reasons I love my yoga teacher, Katerina, is that she is so in sync with universal energy. Tonight's class started at 7 pm, when the constellation of Sagittarius with the galactic center, Vishnu's navel, was rising. I had wanted to include this image of Vishnu dreaming with my last post on the GC, but I thought it was too esoteric.
In tonight's class, Katerina began her instruction with the story of Vishnu's dream:
Brahma (Ultimate Creator) sits on a lotus,the symbol of divine energy and divine grace. The lotus grows from the navel of Vishnu, who is the sleeping god, whose dream is the universe. . . . Brahma opens his eyes and a world comes into being. . . Brahma closes his eyes, and a world goes out of being. ~Joseph Campbell
She also described the esoteric meaning of AUM as three states: A=Brahma/creator, U=Vishnu (preserver)/, M=Shiva (destroyer) and it reminded me of the four elements of the structure of the aum symbol that refer to waking, sleeping, enlightened and dreaming states -- as in the prayer flag illustrated here. I can't help but compare them to the four yugas -- each with its own state of consciousness. I believe that the alignment of the solstices with the galactic center, Vishnunabhi, marks the point in cyclic time when the Kali Yuga (Iron Age) shifts to the Satya Yuga (Golden Age). . . when we go from sleep state to enlightenment. Or could the opening and closing of Brahma's eye refer to the pulse generated by the periodic explosions at the GC? For more on this theory see http://www.jayweidner.com/2012Topology.html.
As I just described my last post, the ancient seers of the Vedic culture referred to the Galactic Center as Vishnunabhi, or the navel of Vishnu. What a perfect time to practice Yoga Nidra, as Vishnu's navel was rising. I have to say it was easier than usual to activate this state, perhaps because the planetary line up is so supportive with Pluto's transit of this region all rising at the horizon.
I am looking forward to sleep tonight. Since I started the Yoga Nidra practice this spring, my restless sleep pattern has changed. My dream world has shifted to what it was in childhood, a reflection of what I wanted to create in reality. As Katerina also quoted from Joseph Campbell:
Myths are public dreams, dreams are private myths.
As mythology has developed around man's stories about the constellations, perhaps we are the public dreams of stars; and each of us are stars within stars creating our own private worlds. The archetypes in my dreams are playing out in amazing ways and coincide beautifully with stellar messages. As above, so below, and within. Sweet dreams!
Friday, July 27, 2007
The Galactic Center (GC) is the mysterious and complex bright core around which our spiraling galaxy rotates. It cannot be observed at visible, ultraviolet, or x-ray wavelengths because interstellar dust obscures the line of sight. All scientific information about the GC comes from observations of gamma ray, hard X-ray, infrared, sub-millimetre and radio wavelengths. The precise astronomical location of the Galactic Center at approximately 3 degrees Sagittarius (sidereal) was first verified in 1918 by Harlow Shapley. However its energetic connection to the earth was not realized until 1932 when Karl G. Jansky, an engineer working for Bell Telephone, was investigating the source of the static interference with overseas telephone lines. He discovered that the interference was due to radio waves being emitted from the center of the galaxy. The source of the radio waves appears to be located almost exactly at the Galactic Center, and may coincide with a super massive black hole. This black hole has the equivalent mass of 4 million suns and is the source of most of the gravitational energy in our galaxy.
In 2002 Antony Stark and Chris Martin presented research that indicated evidence of episodic star bursts at the GC in which many stars undergo supernova explosions at a hundred times the current rate. They believe these explosive events occur every 500 million years with the next one due in 200 million years. The effect on earth would/will be cataclysmic. Some scientists even theorize a pulse generated 200 million years ago may have been responsible for mass extinctions, thus inferring that these pulses are responsible for shifts in evolution.
Although their calculations may be a little different than modern ones, ancient Vedic and Mayan seers described similar phenomena. The Maya had a glyph (see above) for the Galactic Center called Hunab Ku, the supreme God and ultimate Creator. To them it represented the gateway to other Galaxies beyond our Sun as well as all of the Consciousness that has ever existed in this Galaxy. Hunab Ku is liken to a womb that births new stars and it gave birth to our own Sun and planet Earth. The Maya also described periodic bursts of energy coming from Hunab Ku that influence life and consciousness here on earth, and the Mayan Calendar marks these cycles, which some believe are to coincide with the conclusion of the current cycle in 2012.
The ancient seers of the Vedic culture referred to the Galactic Center as Vishnunabhi, or the navel of Vishnu. It is a marker for the ascending and descending yuga cycles that are measured by our Earth/Sun relationship to it (ie the pole star alignments at the solstices). Its location at the end of the final Gandanta series is intriguing. As I wrote in a previous post, each of the Fire signs are the portals to soul growth. Aries marks the beginning of the soul's journey, the individuated or inner self; Leo develops the outer self and material; and Sagittarius designates the point at which the soul turns away from the material as it seeks to merge with universal consciousness. Since the GC falls in the early degrees of Sagittarius, it marks the gateway to this transition. Therefore, planets transiting this space channel energy from that portal to our solar system, and depending on their nature express messages from the core to those of us on Earth who are listening -- and willing to evolve.
In 2005 Edith Hathaway published an article on Pluto's transit of the Galactic Center entitled Pluto in Kali's Zone. She writes: "The two nakshatras most associated with Kali are Jyestha and Mula. . . In this particular transitional area, the mythic battles between the Devas (the gods of light) and the Asuras (gods of darkness) became the most intense. . . For the first time in 248 years, transiting Pluto hovers at the exact border of these constellations for much of three years: from Nov. 2004 thru Nov. 2007. As it marches towards the Galactic Center, we have perhaps a major turning point in the history of civilization as we know it. Pluto, or indeed any planet slowly crossing Kali’s terrain, enters into an arena where it is now more visible and recognizable."
Although Pluto is not one of the visible planets usually discussed by Vedic astrologers, Neo-Vedic astrologers still value it's mythological and allegorical use. And despite the IAU's (International Astronomical Union) demotion of Pluto to dwarf planet, its message to those watching its position is not diminished. Pluto is still an indicator of death, rebirth and powerful transformations. It has been transiting this critical point in space since November 2004. And although its "exact" conjunction with the Galactic Center occurred on December 29, 2006, July 18, 2007, and will occur on October 28, 2007, it seems to me to be cumulative.
In addition to Pluto's transit of the Galactic Center, I am watching Jupiter's upcoming transit to it in the Gandanta degrees -- between November 8 - December 5, 2007. As the great benefic, Jupiter is significator of happiness, knowledge, learning and expansion, and rules Sagittarius. Jupiter changes signs from Scorpio into Sagittarius on November 21, 2007, and promises to bring hope and quest for the truth. In its own sign of Sagittarius Jupiter becomes more powerful and is able to express theses innate qualities. But in the nakshatras of Jyestra and Mula it may have a little bite. Jytestha is ruled by the deity Indra, the dragon slayer. Under this nakshatra the chief motivation is to conquer and to gain supremacy. The presiding deity of the following nakshatra, Mula, is Nritti – the goddess of destruction. Nritti is one aspect of Kali, the destroyer of illusions, and her purpose here is to help us break apart and destroy things, making room for a new creation based on a new foundation. Mula may inflict pain, but it is intended to keep us on the right track to God-realization.
Jupiter conjoins Pluto on December 11, 2007. By the winter solstice Jupiter, Pluto, Mercury and the Sun will be drawing down energy from the Galactic Center, enhanced two days later when a full moon conjoins Mars in Gemini. This powerful alignment may present political or fanatical religious conflict destroying things that aren't working. At the same time it may indicate a window of opportunity when we may be more open to receiving and understanding the messages from the source of life, the mula or root of the galaxy, the Galactic Center.
Monday, July 23, 2007
In 1972 Edward Lorenz presented the paper, "Predictability- Does the Flap of a Butterfly's Wings in Brazil Set Off a Tornado in Texas?" Now known as the butterfly effect, it is a phrase that suggests a small variation of an initial condition of a dynamic system may produce large variations in the long term behavior of the system. So the flapping of butterfly wings might create tiny changes in the atmosphere that ultimately cause a tornado to appear(or not -- it could be countered by a butterfly in Texas).
So my question is if a nuclear waste material is leaked into the ocean, what effect might that have on weather patterns around the globe? Last week the 6.8 earthquake in Japan triggered a leak of nuclear waste. The company said the amount was far too small to pose a health hazard but has come under criticism for initially underreporting radiation levels. Even if the amount was small, those who understand homeopathic theory realize that it only takes a small amount to imprint the radioactive message on water. As the oceans are the source of our weather patterns, any disturbance in them could potentially have an effect anywhere around the globe. During the past 4-5 days our weather in Seattle has been unseasonably rainy and humid. I can't help but wonder if there is a connection. Luckily as Masuru Emoto has shown, water responds to thought and prayer and it's structure can be harmonized with thoughts of gratitude and love. I would suspect our ocean water could use a little gratitude right now.
Monday, July 16, 2007
Last March the Cassini spacecraft took the above picture of a mysterious phenomenon taking place on Saturn. A hexagonal storm encircled the entire north pole. The hexagon is the form of the crystallized stage of water, like a snowflake. Saturn's nature is cold and crystallizing, so I find it an interesting coincidence that this hexagonal phenomenon was discovered while Saturn was in a water sign, Cancer. For more on the story see http://www.jpl.nasa.gov/news/news.cfm?release=2007-034.
Today Saturn shifted into Leo, a fire sign. As I mentioned in my last post, a physical manifestation of this change may come through increased temperatures, volcanic activity, and earthquakes. Sadly almost to the exact moment of transition, there were two 6+ earthquakes in the ring of fire today in Japan. One quake killed 9 elderly people (Saturn rules old age and death), injured more than 1,000, and triggered a leak of contaminated water from a nuclear power plant. The ring of fire is the earthquake zone where water meets fire. The ring of fire was particularly active while Saturn journeyed through the water sign Cancer, beginning with the 2004 tsunami.
Water and fire are opposite elements, each able to support or extinguish the other. In Taoist traditions maintaining their balance in the body is the alchemical secret to immortality. According to Yin-Yang theory, everything in the universe can be divided into two opposite, but complementary, aspects of yin (water) and yang (fire). Yin and yang are relative. One cannot exist with out the other.
In Vedic astrology the transition of a water sign to fire sign is called Gandanta. It is traditionally seen as an inauspicious position causing misery to the area of influence of the planet. (ie. Saturn rules earth as in land). In Sanskrit Gand means knot, or node, and anta means end, in particular the last 3 degrees of a water sign, and first three degrees of a fire sign -- at the three distinct junctions of Pisces (Revati)- Aries (Aswini), Cancer (Ashlesha)- Leo (Magha), and Scorpio (Jyeshta)- Sagittarius (Mula).
Each of the Fire signs are the portals to soul growth. Aries marks the beginning of the soul's journey, the individuated or inner self; Leo develops the outer self and material; and Sagittarius designates the point at which the soul turns away from the material as it seeks to merge with universal consciousness. When planets are placed in these positions, they take on a special power to unravel the knot of karma and move on to the next level. If a planets falls in the last three degrees of water sign, it is completing an old cycle; if it falls in the first three degree of a fire sign is beginning a new cycle. On a soul level, Saturn in Leo represents the potential to create social boundaries for the outer self and manifest its pursuit of the material.
Saturn is unique in that it is more powerful as it matures, thus gaining strength in the later degrees of a sign. It increased its potency in May when it entered the last three degrees of Cancer, which is part of the Ashlesha nakshatra. The ruling deity of Ashlesha is the Naga or serpent. Saturn has finally finished shedding its skin and is now, though still a little raw, ready to grow a new one. Saturn will be Gandanta through early August.
The Gandanta experience can be extremely painful, but it is necessary for the soul to grow into another dimension. At the Magha/ Leo stage, the soul is finally getting ready to experience life at a material level. While in Leo, the sign of kings, Saturn may also have a sobering effect on world leaders. The nakshatra of Magha is ruled by the Pitris, the great Fathers of humanity, who function as guardian angels giving protection in the event of major calamities on earth. Perhaps they were at work in Japan as there were only nine deaths -- of elders, who now have transitioned and have become ancestors.
Sending prayers to those suffering from today's earth changes. May the Pitris continue to protect you and all of humanity.
Sunday, July 15, 2007
As ruler of my own chart, I am quite partial to the planet Saturn. It's distinctive rings have captured the attention of astronomers and stargazers for thousands of years. The Cassini spacecraft has been sending back amazing pictures. In February of 2005 NASA revealed a surprising find that although Saturn appears yellow from our viewpoint on Earth, this beautiful gas giant has blue skies in its northern hemisphere. It amazes me that the great Vedic seers described Saturn as blue thousands of years ago -- and makes me wonder if they were extremely sensitive visionaries or if were they in contact with off world intelligences?
Saturn spends 2.5 years in a sign and it takes approximately 29 years to make a complete circuit of the zodiac. Astrologically it is the planetary ruler of Capricorn and Aquarius. Saturn is the last outer planet visible to the naked eye and was well known and described by Vedic astrologers as the Lord of Karma. Traditionally Saturn is king of the malefics, significator of difficulties, death, disease, obstruction, delay, and misfortune. It challenges the ego and makes us face our deepest fears.
While Saturn's lessons are painful, it's gifts may be rewarding in the end. My teacher, Dennis Flaherty, describes the pressure of Saturn to be like the pressure needed to turn black carbon into brilliant diamonds -- the strongest and most beautiful of gemstones. One of the best books on Saturn is Robert Svoboda's The Greatness of Saturn, A Therapeutic Myth. What Saturn can do for us is to help us set boundaries and limits. Saturn reveals the limitations of the material world and through suffering the opportunity for transcendence is formed. David Frawley writes, Saturn is death that takes us beyond the limitations of mortal life, which is the gateway to the eternal. A well placed Saturn is necessary for spiritual practice and is an indicator for yogis and mystics.
Saturn in Leo Mid-July 2007 - Mid-September 2009
This week Saturn changes signs. It enters the constellation of Leo and will stay there for the next two years. As ruler of Capricorn and Aquarius, Saturn is not as comfortable in the opposite sign of Leo ruled by the Sun. In Vedic astrology planets belong to different camps, and Saturn and the Sun are not friends. When the planet of obstruction and shadow enters the sign of light, it has an effect not only on the realm ruled by Saturn but also on the realms signified by the Sun. Although mundane astrology and political interpretation are not my interests, it is quite clear that this energy will effect our leaders and giant corporations. See Dennis Flaherty's online Star Trends for an informative forecast of what's ahead economically and politically.
We had a taste of what's coming last winter. Between the beginning of November 2007 to early January 2007 Saturn made a brief sojourn into the constellation of Leo. So on a personal level, whatever pattern was going on at that time may resurface and be worked out during the next two years. What I remember most about that time were intense winter storms. I had to abandon my car twice due to impassible road conditions and face my fears about what having too many snow days off of work would do to my resources and reputation -- not to mention the self realization that I have become Seattle weather wimp.
However at the same time that I was intermittently confined to my icy home, I became involved with a meditation group that opened my horizons beyond words -- literally. (Thank you -- you know who you are.) This spiritual awakening may have also be due in part to Saturn traveling with Ketu, the south node, indicator of spiritual liberation. Ketu will be traveling with Saturn for the first year of its visit to Leo and its influence is always unpredictable, abstract and karmic. Ketu has a hot nature and which when placed in a fire sign like Leo its potential to burn away karma will certainly increase. Saturn is a significator for land and the earth and combined with Ketu may indicate further heating up of the planet (dah) as well as more local events like wildfires. It also means that Saturn is tied up with the eclipse cycle for the next year, especially the solar eclipse in Leo on September 11, 2007.
Another key date to watch is when Saturn is in exact alignment with the Sun, called combust, on August 21, 2007. In this case Saturn's influence is diminished, which may sound good to those of us who like to push beyond our limits, but it can also mean that important boundaries get pushed and broken. Beware of burn out at this time.
Saturn will also begin its journey in the unfriendly sign of Leo with its best friend Venus. She joined him two weeks ago in a lovely alignment visible to the naked in the constellation of Cancer. Since then she has passed him and entered Leo paving the way for him. Venus goes retrograde on July 27th and will reconnect with Saturn around August 12th and later after she goes forward as the morning star around October 14th. Venus' benefic energy may soften some of Saturn's heaviness. As I mentioned in a previous post, Venus in Leo loves drama, and with Saturn, the Lord of Karma, and Ketu, indicator of past life karma, she may present some interesting opportunities to work through some old dramas, or at least inspire some new ones to be written or acted out.
Wednesday, July 11, 2007
Did you feel it? There was a surge of highly charged particles hitting the earth's atmosphere early this morning which woke me from a sound sleep. After an hour of watching my clock, I decided to check the KP index (http://www.sec.noaa.gov/rt_plots/kp_3d.html ) which did show a spike of activity. So I decided to make a post since I could not sleep.
As someone who works with energetic fields, I have realized that I am quite sensitive to magnetic fluctuations and I believe that the human body has a magnetic field that is profoundly effected by electromagnetic and geomagnetic shifts. You can see how the energetic fields depicted by Alex Grey above and the fields surrounding the earth resemble each other --as above, so below. I started to become aware of this connection while in acupuncture school during the last solar maximum in 2000. In 2000 something very mysterious happened. The south pole of the Sun disappeared while a second north pole developed. (See http://www.space.com/scienceastronomy/sun_poles_030423.html ). I found this extremely fascinating in light of the close election result: a tie between two presidential hopefuls and two north poles tied together (in astrology the sun represents leaders and kings). This amazing coincidence inspired me to look more deeply at the sunspot theories.
Apparently I was not alone looking at the cyclical nature of sunspots. There have been all sorts of studies, including economic correlations to stock market fluctuation and the sunspot cycle. The shifting of the sun's poles occurs approximately every 11 years and seems to be related to the sunspot cycle -- and theoretically to changes in political and economic reversals. Certainly the liberal political climate of the US shifted 180 degrees after the Clinton years to a conservative one.
What makes recent sunspot activity interesting is its possible connection to global warming. A little discussed phenomenon is that not only the earth is heating up. All the planets in our solar system are warming. (See http://www.prisonplanet.com/articles/november2006/161106suvjupiter.htm ). Slightly les controversial is the theory that space weather has a profound effect on earth's climate and weather patterns. One of my favorite books is called Solar Rain by Mitch Battros who proposes this equation: Sunspots =>Solar Flares (CME)=>Magnetic Shift=>Shifting Ocean and Jet Stream Currents=> Extreme Weather. Initially scoffed at by mainstream scientists, the tide has now turned and evidence is mounting that here is indeed a direct influence of space weather on earth weather, and in my opinion on human weather/energetic systems.
Today's energetic spike was not caused by a solar flare or CME. Although there is a large sunspot crossing the earth side of the sun, this solar wind seems be coming from another place in space, thus I call it a stellar wind. I believe the sun is a living conscious field and that it senses the environment of the solar system as well as communicates with its distant stellar family. I've noticed flares and solar winds increase when other objects enter our solar system, like the recent discovery of a small comet called COMET LINEAR VZ13 which is gliding by the constellation Draco (conspiracy buffs take notice). (For more on the comet and current space weather activity see www.spaceweather.com). I wonder if there will ever be a time when scientific research will definitively connect the weather above, to the weather below.
Monday, July 9, 2007
Twenty-three is my quick answer to the question: "what is the difference between Vedic Astrology and Western astrology?" I don't mean to be cryptic, but 23 degrees is literally the difference between the Tropical and Sidereal zodiacs. It is called the Ayanamsha -- in Sanskrit ayana meaning solstice and amsha meaning portion -- and it refers to the difference between Tropical and Sidereal zodiacs.
The zodiac is a ring of constellations often referred to as signs, such as Aquarius, Leo, Scorpio and Taurus. It is a cosmic clock around which our solar systems operates and how astrologers measure cycles of time. Most people do not realize that there are two distinct zodiacs. Vedic astrologers use the Sidereal zodiac and Western astrologers use the Tropical zodiac. The Sidereal zodiac is based on observations of planets lining up against the backdrop of the fixed stars. It is oriented to the center of the galaxy. On the other hand, the Tropical zodiac is based on the relationship between the sun and earth. It is oriented to the equinoxes. In Western astrology the spring equinox sets the beginning of the Tropical zodiac at 1 degree Aries, even though the sun is astronomically traveling in the light fields of Pisces. In other words, it does not correspond to observable position. Vedic astrology is called Jyotisha in Sanskrit, meaning the science of light, and Vedic astrology describes how the light emitted from the stars effects us. When Western astrology was in its early stages, the two zodiacs may have lined up; but over time the two moved apart approximately 50 seconds per year to the current 23 degrees of separation (even that number is debated, but the standard of India, the Lahiri ayanamsha is 23 degrees 10 seconds).
Vedic astrology is considered by scholars to pre-date Western astrology and is the only system that has accounted for the precession of the equinoxes. What is the precession of the equinoxes? The answer to that involves another occurrence of the number 23 (those familiar with the enigma of 23, like LOST fans, may find this amusing). Because Earth's axis is tilted 23° 27' in its orbit around the sun, its equatorial plane is tilted with respect to the ecliptic plane, the plane created by Earth's orbit. These two intersecting planes create an intersecting line called the vernal axis that occurs on the first day of spring, or Vernal equinox. As the Earth spins on its axis, its axis wobbles (precesses 50.3 seconds of arc per year or 1 degree every 71.6 years) very slowly over a period of about 24,000 to 26,000 years. As this occurs, the pole of the Earth inscribes an arc in the heavens called the precessional arc. The Earth's pole aligns with different stars throughout the precessional period. The current pole star is Polaris. Approximately 13,000 year ago it was Vega, one of my favorite stars. Earth's precessional cycle is also referred to as Earth's Great Year in the alchemical tradition, World Ages, or Yugas in the Vedas. David Frawley describes it a one year in the life of humanity.
In Vedic astrology there is a line of thought that suggests this 24,000-26,000 cycle (and even wobble of the earth itself) maybe be generated by a grand cycle of our sun with a companion dark star. Modern astronomy is studying this possibility as well. The ancient Vedic seers divided up the cycle into four world ages: the Satya(Truth or Golden), Treta (Third or Silver), Dwapara (Third or Bronze) and Kali (first or Iron) Ages. Each age describes a stage of awareness for mankind in which consciousness ascends, descends, and ascends in unending cycles perhaps due to the influence of this yet to be discovered companion star. Although New Age philosophers have described humanity as entering the Age of Aquarius, astronomically speaking that will not happen for approximately 300-400 years.
According to Vedic thought, the cycles of ascending and descending consciousness are connected not only to our rotation around a companion star, but also our cycle around the galactic center. According to David Frawley, "Vedic astrology orients the zodiac to the galactic center, or the central galactic sun, whose influence comes to us through fixed stars of the constellation Sagittarius." The galactic center is like our cosmic belly button -- it is sometimes called Vishnunabhi, or the navel of Vishnu-- the point from which our galaxy grew and expanded. Many ancient cultures studied and recorded their observations about this area of the night sky, including the Mayans whose calendar marks an astronomical event of our winter solstice aligning with the galactic center in 2012. It's like the earth's pole or antenna will be aligned and open to receive message from the source itself. [H]ohm is calling.
One of the most brilliant developments of the ancient Vedic seers was to further divide the zodiac into more identifiable parts. They did this by creating the Nakshatra system. In Sanskrit Nakshatra means lunar mansion. As the moon travels through the entire zodiac in 27-28 days, the ancient seers ascribed a Nakshatra for each day simplifying its location. Although too vast a subject to go into in this post, it is interesting to point out that the name for the Nakstratra that marks the galactic center is Mula, meaning root or source.
Another difference between Western and Vedic astrology is the modern use of non-observable planets and asteroids. As a Neo-Vedic astrologer I do consider some of the outer planets when I look at a chart, but I tend to be more interested in the fixed stars and Nakshatras. I marvel at how Western astrologers bring in new astronomical discoveries to their chart interpretations. Basically I see Western charts as a map of the same terrain as a Vedic chart, but indicating different types or levels of information. It's like comparing a topological map with a road map. I don't need to know the difference of elevation between Broadway and 3rd Avenue, but I might like to know the street number of Benaroya Hall. It all depends on what type of information one is seeking. Vedic astrologers come from a tradition and philosophy that focuses on the four aims of life: dharma (purpose), arthra (attainment), kama (desire),and the most important moksha (liberation). Western astrology is enriched by many diverse traditions and the information gleaned from it may be quite extensive and more suited for the modern mind. But for me, I've always been drawn to the stars in the night sky and have felt them speak to me in the language of light. And as Jyotisha is the science of light, it is the tool and filter I use to translate this information.