Currently, late November 2020, a planetary battle is lining up between the Mars-Uranus alliance in the first decan (early) of Taurus and the Jupiter-Saturn-Pluto alliance in the first decan (early) of Aquarius. The pressure is building even now, even though the celestial conflagration culminates in early January 2021, when Mars attacks the others. (See Planetary Battles)
Two fixed signs obstinately refuse to give in. Warfare is necessary to resolve the conflict. Compromise is not an option. The two sides are too far apart. There will be casualties.
After the January crises, the tension begins to ease as Mars, the main instigator, speeds into a more auspicious region of the Zodiac. Resolution of conflict. The healing can begin. Yet the damage was severe.
While the planetary interactions are objective, the astrological interpretation is mine. I chose to view the planetary interactions as a Heavenly Sign — an omen — a reflection of the divine order. I then attempted to interpret the omen — impart the configurations with some general, even deliberately vague, meaning that might be applied to personal patterns.
Rather than a replicable science, divination is an art. It is the art of applying celestial patterns to human affairs. As an art, the results are dependent upon the skill of the diviner. Although the art is personal, the celestial events (deemed planetary battles) that occur over the next few months are indisputable.
Most obviously, the planetary conflicts reflect both 1) Covid’s triple devastation: health, social and financial and 2) the highly-charged political polarization associated with the United States’ presidential election. Yet, this interpretation is somewhat trivial. Everyone, even the semi-conscious, are aware of these trends. While interesting, nothing is learned.
Let us crank it up a notch — take it to a new level. Astrology can be fatalistic or assist us on our Path. Describing personality traits and predicting what is going to happen reflects a static and passive view of existence. This is what is going to happen and this is who I am — unavoidable Fate.
Rather than becoming a victim of Fate, I prefer to aim at self-actualization — fulfilling my personal potentials — achieving my Destiny. To achieve that goal, I practice self-cultivation, which includes daily meditation. From the proper perspective, astrology can also enlighten and enliven us. Let us see how.
Due to human excess, the future is infused with Fear. Fear of pandemics, global warming, eco-destruction, the rise of fascism, … the list goes on an on. The union of Aggressive Mars and Revolutionary Uranus and their coming conflicts with Death-dealing Saturn and the rest encapsulates that anxiety regarding our supposedly dim prospects.
Unfortunately, the emotion of Fear undermines our forward progress. Why?
Living organisms have two basic types of systems; 1) Growth and 2) Protection. Our sympathetic and para-sympathetic nervous systems epitomize the two types. Regrettably, the two systems cannot operate simultaneously. It’s either one or the other. Not both.
When we are in protection mode, e.g. when we are afraid, the growth mode shuts down. Our defenses are maintained until the danger is past. Then the growth mode turns on and the protection mode turns off.
Only in the growth state can we return to the business of fulfilling potentials. It is impossible to self-actualize when the protection mode is on. No growth, just guarding and defending. Due to this on-off, either-or scenario, it is mandatory to somehow shut off or at least manage our fear.
What does astrology teach us in this regard?
We project meaning onto the planetary interactions. Similarly, my father-in-law sees faces in nature, e.g. boulders, and takes photographs that reflect his vision. We smile when we see the same humorous illusion that his titles suggest. No one believes that the rocks really have faces. In like fashion, the planets provide a metaphor for understanding reality, but are not reality.
In the same way, the news we watch on our screens and read about in publications is only a poor reflection of reality — merely a snap shot of a much larger picture. Just as fictional movies can be entertaining, arousing real emotions, the news can also be entertaining, even exciting. Nothing wrong with the political drama regarding other people in other places. I find it fascinating.
The problem arises when the news-obsession begins arousing fear. The anxiety turns off the growth mode and turns on the protective mode. Certainly no forward progress. Hopefully, we do not drift off the Path. It is certainly possible. Getting involved in trivial matters that seem so important because we are afraid. Of course, we can also be afraid of old age, bad health, financial shortcomings and being abandoned, with equally deleterious consequences.
Just as our Mind projects patterns upon the planets, Mind also projects patterns upon our lives. Because Mind constructs the meaning behind planetary interactions, movies, novels and our lives, Mind can also deconstruct the negative emotional reality we have created from flickering images upon a screen or even random conversations.
To clarify, let me provide a personal example. Friend: “Appears as if Trump is preparing to go to war with Iran — fouling things up as much as he can in his last few months in office.” Thinking to myself: “OMG! The upcoming Planetary Battles indicate a huge conflagration as well. Aurgh! Woe is me. Celestial patterns align with plausible scenario to predict catastrophe. We are doomed.” <Emotional reaction>
“Whoa! Take a deep breath. Slow down. Concentrate on breathing, body alignment and relaxing the verbal Mind. Ah, peace and tranquility! My body is healthy. My family and friends still love me. The future is unknown. Global politics, while interesting is beyond my sphere of influence. Time to fulfill potentials — perhaps write a Medium article.”
To defuse our fears, whether astrological, news based or personal, we must get out of our thoughts and into our body via mediation, exercise and sensuality.
Astrology provides yet another way.
Tapping into our Cultural Heritage increases Dimensionality
The primary combatants in our planetary battles are visible in the evening sky for the coming months. Not just in some isolated locality. But all over the Northern Hemisphere.
By actually looking at the sky, we tap into an ancient experience — direct astronomical observations. Through this immediate sensuality, we avoid the table-driven cerebral abstractions of modern times. Rather than burying our head in newspaper articles looking for what is happening to our Astrological Sign or getting an hourly update from our computer screen, we get outside and have a direct visual experience of the heavens.
In such a way, we forge a link with the distant past — some 2500 years ago — when the ancient Chaldeans living in Mesopotamia first began laying the foundations of modern astrology. (See article.)
Grounding in tradition strengthens our personal network by increasing the dimensionality of our lives. Rather than solely inhabiting the shallow present, extending roots deep into our ancestral past nourishes our soul.
We imagine that these Chaldeans — as careful observers of planetary position — were doing the same thing that we are doing — watching the Heavens for a Sign — as a way of understanding a chaotic reality. It seems that things have not really changed that much in all those centuries. Despite our technological advantages, being a human is equally challenging — now and then.
Although separated by millennia, language and culture, we each observe the planetary configurations and then somehow project an earthly pattern upon these celestial events — finding some kind of strange meaning in seemingly random though orderly occurrences.
In such a way, I bond with our Western roots — Chaldean, Egyptian and Greek in the beginning and then Roman, Arab, Medieval Europe, into Western Civilization and the modern world in a continuous, unbroken chain. People in all times and places and cultures have studied the heavens for clues — for hints as what to do next — our course of behavior. Attack, retreat or stay still.
It is very grounding to connect up with our ancestral past. I feel stronger just imagining our common bond. My ancient brothers and sisters, like me, were attempting to make sense out of the seeming chaos. Existing in a state of awe and wonder about the Mystery. Obsessively curious about what is going on. Open to options, but attempting to ground in facts. Trying to be genuine rather than reading too much into things.
Getting in touch with our environment through our senses provides an antidote for a major problem for modern humans — getting stuck in our heads — our thoughts. We’ve lost touch with both our body and our environment. Increasingly planted in front of some kind of screen, we begin generating fantasylands that have very little to do with reality. Unfortunately, these imagined scenarios can easily destroy our peace of mind — thereby weakening our foundations — rendering us more vulnerable to mental illness and disease — and less able to fulfill our potentials.
The simple cure: Get out of our heads/our thoughts/our verbal reality. Instead, cultivate a sensual relationship with the world that surrounds us, including our solar neighbors — the planets. Rather than becoming overwhelmed with the immensity of the Universe, become familiar with and comfortable in our own planetary community. Rather than a feeling of isolation and loneliness, this awareness of our special place in the Cosmos generates a sense of belonging.
As humans have done forever, we observe the sky for some kind of order, perhaps a Sign. Knowing that we are not alone in having this bizarre urge is comforting. I am not going insane. More importantly, this imagined extension to the beginnings of human time — this alignment and commonality with my brothers and sisters of all cultures in all times and places — increases my personal dimensionality.
Dimensionality? We can be aware of the immediate Now as in the present moment or we can extend into the Eternal Now, which extends into the past and future. The first type of Now is instantaneous (a point), while the second is dimensional (spatial).
Broadening our ancestral roots — feeling a sense of community with all humankind, rather than being trapped in second decade of the 21st century — is transformative, liberating. Much more stability with a wide base. Touch the distant past through astrology.