Friday, March 31, 2017

Gemini Moon Musings - What is Ego in a Chart ?


Some say the ego is represented by the Sun, in a chart, others say it's the Moon. But can we really simplify something so complex as the ego to this = that ?

Perhaps the ego is a bit more elusive. Perhaps any planet can be egoic, until such time as it evolves into it's higher nature. As a person grows and becomes more self-aware (with any luck), planets and aspects in their natal chart begin to take on a deeper meaning, it's no longer just a personality analysis. But the luminaries are still the main players.

Like a knight in shining armor, the ego protects our fragile, metamorphosing self, when we are young and going through rough times (or at least teenage times). Though it can and should never be entirely vanquished from our lives, at some point it has to step down, or at least to the side, so the authentic self can take the throne. The Knights of Tarot can be seen as ego archetypes. Ideally, they are simply 'of noble service'.


That vital spark in each of us, which is a part of the Sun, longs to become a Sun itself and to be as one with the eternal source of life. The Sun's placement in a natal chart shows who one is, here and now, and operates most effectively when one can be in the present.

Recently we were discussing Gemini Trump's badly wounded ego, on an FB thread. The mortal twin is in complete fear and denial of it's mortality.
Where is little Donald ? It's like he's his own changeling.  It's hard to watch how in pain he is, especially as he's taking everyone down into the void with him - maybe he is acting out the entire wounded ego of America. He has Regulus, the Lion's heart, on his ascendant. Imagine if he'd had a healthy ego.


The Sun may initially express as egocentric 'me me me', but the driving urge behind this is for the Sun to gradually develop into who we are simply meant to be in this lifetime. Some people have a much easier time than others at this, for various reasons. But when you look around - including in the mirror - you see a lot of struggle going on. Signs of an ego not wanting to take a back seat are: taking things personally, being defensive and not  able to handle criticism, narcissism, having to put others down in order to feel better about oneself, requiring validation, selfie addiction.... The Sun is after all, a star; the center of our solar system, with all the other players revolving around it. That sure sounds like some egos, but it also sounds like the heart of universal love.

Who hasn't referred to this quote by Marianne Williamson ?

"Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, and fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people will not feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It is not just in some of us; it is in everyone and as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give others permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others."


The Moon is no less important, for it represents the soul's memory, plus all the reflections and emotions we ever took on, that helped to create our ego (esp. through the mother, and we are also the mother of our ego, as the Queen is creatrix to the Knight). Our Moon nature is directly related to our Sun nature, so a wounded, solar ego will also be reflected in the Moon. Silver, the Moon's metal, is very sensitive and gets tarnished easily from outer impurities. The Moon is absorbent, impressionable, cyclic... but not so inconstant as we may think. We are just used to defining her by the Sun's light.


When the Moon is in her dark phase, at one with the night, she is not reflecting anything. This is why we say the New Moon is the time for re-birthing, for fresh starts. As the Sun self longs to be one with life, so the Moon self longs to be one with death. That is, to be one with the natural cycles of time and change, which we all embody. There can be no rebirth without death. We all go back to the Great Mother for recycling. The Moon placement bears our soul memory and matriarchal lineage. A badly wounded ego reflected in the Moon might bring out all manner of demons.

There are many different opinions on the implications of a solar eclipse, especially in a birth chart. Well, think about it - this is a rare moment in time where the Moon is not only not reflecting the Sun's nature/light, but up-staging it, entirely. The person born on or close to such an event will have a very strong, lunar nature, indeed. They will have a Sun/Moon conjunction, of course (conjunct one of the lunar nodes). This can be a powerful, directed combo, or - if we are talking wounded ego - a hyper-sensitive person who can't see themselves or can't see beyond themselves. In either case, their Solar and Lunar natures are not separate.



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Were you born on an eclipse ? (Do you have Sun and New Moon conjunct a node ?)
This page has a list: https://www.timeanddate.com/eclipse/list.html

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*All written content herein (other than quotations) is copyright ©Roxanna Bikadoroff 2017*

Saturday, February 25, 2017

SOLAR ECLIPSE, NOW



I'm always hesitant to impose too much extra meaning on natural phenomena. That is not to say it's insignificant, but rather that it should be read purely by the energetic impression it makes, not as a 'sign' of something else. The Gods and nature do not speak in words, that's our own projection.

Superstition that eclipses are evil omens or signs of apocalypse are still circulating, as they always have. It does seem like 'end times' right now, but really, do we need an eclipse to affirm just how scary things are ? And even if everything were hunky-dory, this natural phenomena would still occur. (FYI, this eclipse isn't the end - according to Christian fundamentalists - the one on August 21 is, since it affects the US and UK, hence 'The World').

It might be of more use to witness the energy for it's benign awesomeness and work with it. Isn't it amazing that we exist while (or because ?) the Sun and Moon are exactly the same size, from our earthly perspective ? Scientists say in 60 million years, the distance between the Sun and Moon will be too vast, and we won't have eclipses. By that time,  our consciousness will have moved on from human, anyway.  But right now, the 2 luminaries are indeed like a pair of eyes, as the Egyptians depicted.  So when they blink, we take note of this cosmic, rebooting event, which - as above, so below - we may also experience within. Earthquakes are also a possibility, so since we are mini earths, we may also experience inner shifts.



Astrologically speaking, the solar eclipse occurs at Pisces 8. Here's Ellias Lonsdale's interpretation of the Sabian symbol for this degree:

"A gypsy peasant woman sings a mournful chant.
The earth is broken. The compact between a human soul and her earth housing is violated. Some of us are sensitive to what has gone wrong and must proclaim a conscience-change. An agonizing place to be, and yet treated as just the way it is, met with huge resolve, almost welcoming that it has come down to this. Creatively expressive of what it feels like to be here in the midst, you feel resonant with all the kingdoms of nature, and especially aligned with the soul of this planet in her deep changes. Put in the right place at the right time to call the occasion, to make things unavoidable, you feel almost immobilized by how huge the task is. Yet you are stoical, dedicated, exceedingly strong, and enduring. Able to withstand the shaking-loose of the old Earth. In here for the duration. Just getting going when it all seems lost."


Holy cow.

Adding to that, conjunctions of this solunar union to Neptune and the South node, plus Mercury conjunct the South node, in Pisces. Another major purge phase of the transition out of the Piscean Age. It left a lot of scars. This is why the still Piscean-entrenched are jonesing for an apoc-eclipse. It's the only way they understand letting go of the old, religious structure they're trapped in.

It is indeed a good time to release what we're hooked on, from the past. With Jupiter Rx in Libra and half way from it's Capricorn to Cancer nodes, we may unconsciously revisit the memories of our patriarchal religion-dominated past centuries, weighing the positives and negatives; weighing the heart of this so-called spirituality, long interpreted according to convenience and misused to oppress, on the scales of Maat. Ammut licks her chops.


Pisces and people with planets/Moon/angles conjunct Pisces 8 will feel any energetic shift most intensely. As well, all water signs and earth signs are tapped in, and anyone with planetary aspects to this degree (ie, if your Moon is at 8 Taurus or thereabouts, MH at 8 Virgo, etc). Also, if you can recall having a significant event happen when the Sun was in this degree (ie,  same time of year, in the past, or 8 yrs ago), now is a good time to reboot the emotional pattern, if need be. It could happen on it's own, but it helps to have directed intention, too.

There's a homeopathic treatment called the 'crown of thorns', wherein needles are placed around the head, like a crown, and a tiny amount of remedy and novocaine are injected, stopping the nerve messages, for a brief time. The intent is to break the cycle, restart it fresh, like you do with a computer that's become too jumbled with cookies and whatnot.  It's used for head injuries, when symptoms often long outlast the injury, because of nerve memory. Perhaps a good visual for this emotion-centred, 'ring of fire' eclipse ?


Numerologically, the day (26) also adds up to 8, and the full day to 20 (2), Justice and Judgement, again, having to do with balance, truth and rebirth.

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Sunday, January 8, 2017

C'est Si N'est Pas Une Planète or What I Did on My Mercury Rx Vacation

Aion holding Zodiac Wheel, floor mosaic from a Roman villa in Sentinum (today Sassoferrato in Umbria), ca. 200–250 CE

The more I study religions the more I am convinced that man never worshiped anything but himself.   

~ Sir Richard Francis Burton


Over the holidays I went into Rx retreat and did some re-searching on the Hellenistic pantheon we have become so overly (un)comfortable with in astrology. Too often I hear/read people blaming planets, natal or transit, for every little mishap, as if they are being made a Job out of, "Saturn in my 7th is wrecking all my relationships !" "I am having a crummy day, Mercury Rx !" Do we honestly believe that Saturn, rolling around the Sun, busily spinning space dust into rings and storm clouds into hexagons, gives a toss about our pithy, hooman encounters, or that hell is only unleashed in it's full fury during Mercury's apparent, backwards motion, three times a year ? We might well ask if the Goddess of this Earth is having an influence on other planets' beings (now now, just because we can't see them, doesn't mean they aren't there). I say, isn't it time we got out of this superstitious mindset ?

The horoscope is really just an elaborate clock, modeled on the solar system, from our self-centered, Earthly perspective. When we interpret a planet's effects, such as Saturn's, we are usually referring to the mythology around the God it is named after ("lame" "Darth Vader" "devours his children"), or it's alchemical characteristics ("lead" "calcification" "hardening" "black" "depression"), as well as it's natural ones, like having rings ("limitations" "responsibilities" "bindings") or being the last planet visible to the unaided eye ("the end" "the outer limit").


Drawing of Roman calendar 'grafitti',  from the first centuries AD. (via Quadriformisratio)

In the cities of ancient Greece and Rome, citizens were required to honor certain gods, on particular days and hours with rituals or sacred, communal meals. These had nothing to do with planetary orbits - other than the Sun (equinoxes and solstices) and Moon (months) - only in keeping the city in good standing with the gods of the calends. The names of our days and months are a testament to this old order. It's still a Roman Catholic tradition to eat fish (thought to be an aphrodisiac) on Vendredi/Venus' day to honour the Goddess of sexual love, whether they realize it or not. March, when rams went into rut and Roman troops prepared for battle, was named for Mars, January for Janus, etc.
Each city had their own
hymns and prayers, which they guarded carefully, and their own version of the Gods, too; Athena of Athens was not the same Athena of, say, Thebes.  Strangers could not take part in the communal meals or rituals, for that would contaminate things.  A pleb's religiosity was more like the fearful vigilance of an compulsive germaphobe than the heartfelt devotion of a whirling dervish. It must have been akin to mass schizophrenia. Dogmas were strictly adhered to, the Gods just waiting for someone to slip up. If Aeolus, chosen to sup that week, was late for a sacred dinner, with a wine stain on his white robe, the whole city would certainly be doomed. If Agnes the vestal fell asleep and let the sacred flame go out, she might be required to sacrifice herself to put things right before the vindictive and narcissistic Gods. The same discipline applied to each household, where the women folk were in charge of keeping the ancestral hearth fire going, while the father was literally the family priest. Priests are still referred to as 'father'.

It seems absurd that people should invent gods in their own image and then turn them into almighty, cruel task-masters, doesn't it ? Oh right. It's a good way to control the populace. The Gods are watching, God, the Father is watching, Santa is watching, Big Brother is watching. Facebook is watching… Either we are an experiment in a petri dish or our own conscience is out to get us. And we are narcissists.



God's Solar Eye on tombstone, Old Laurel Grove Cemetery


As mentioned, the Greek pantheon didn't start out as a planetary one. For example, the Goddess Aphrodite (Roman Venus - who herself had multiple versions) was not equated with the morning and evening stars (Phosphorus and Hesperus, respectively), who were seen as 'bringers of' the Gods of dawn or dusk. The Mesopotamian and Egyptian Gods, on the other hand, were planet and star based. So, at a certain point, the Greeks - and therefore the Romans - decided to get on board and name each planet after a God or Goddess, which meant electing the one that most closely fit the role. To the Greeks,  mathematical harmony would likely have overruled the psychology of their inconstant Gods.


Although there are signs wherein each planet feels more itself, things can get muddled, when it comes to their so-called rulerships. I'm ready to ditch the whole notion, since learning that Sagittarius used to be under the rulership of Artemis-Diana, but was given to Zeus-Jupiter instead. (I dig you conjunct my Sun, Big Guy, but with Diana Moon and Black Moon Lilith  sharing a degree, at my gates, the resentment is real ! Give me back my Moon bow and crown, at once !) Kronos-Saturn, not even part of the original Greek pantheon, replaced Demeter-Ceres, when planets were handed out (see link at bottom of page). Yes, they both have sickles and bring on the Winter, but one is a cannibal father, one a grieving mother. Here you are, Demeter-Ceres, major Goddess of the Eleusinian mysteries, most famous of the secret, religious rites in ancient Greece - you can have an asteroid…Happy Mother's Day ! Perhaps that's part of it, Saturn is the cover personality for what is secretly Ceres. Put that in your amphora.

Engraving of a Roman zodiac wheel, with signs and planetary Gods. Supreme God Jupiter is in the middle, and in the planet ring. (NYPL)

Most of the others have made a few sign/house switches over time, with the possible exception of the ever-constant, Venus/Taurus. (Not to mention the regular morphing and adapting of the gods, themselves). Then there's the asteroids and their not-yet-agreed-upon rulers…we have known these planetary bodies such a short while, yet countless books about their astrological significance have been published, applying the corresponding Greek myth to the asteroid of that namesake. Chiron has the more obvious implications (though by no means a done deal, since it was only discovered in 1977), due to it's cyclic return at the critical age of 50, plus it's close relationship with Saturn. Uranus (1781) and Neptune (1846) are comparatively recent additions, too; Uranus the Greek sky God is absolutely nothing like astrological or planetary Uranus, who most will agree is more the Prometheus archetype type. The Astronomical Society's criteria was based entirely on who begat who in Greco-Roman mythology. We imagined Pluto (1930) to be shadowy, underground killer, until it flashed us a big, pink heart, 85 years on, followed by a cute whale. WTF ? You are supposed to be the embodiment of evil death, Pluto, quit bursting my fear bubble !

[Side note: The 'demotion' from planet to dwarf planet bears absolutely no meaning in astrology or anywhere else. It's the brainchild of one, young, over-zealous, male astronomer and was never the consensus. He reminds me of the tailor in the fairy tale who swatted 7 flies at once and embroidered 'Seven With One Blow' on his belt (?), tricking people into thinking he'd struck down 7 men. Besides, dwarves in fairy tales/mythology are usually Plutonian, so maybe it was all part of Pluto's plan to re-invent itself.]


Ptolemy, the man who gave us Tropical Astrology (engraving from 1564)

When things get muddled and people are just repeating information without actually thinking about it, we need to stop and go back to the SOURCE, starting with the actual planet, it's nature and cycles. The ancient astronomers watched the heavens carefully and noted events that occurred during the transits of planets ('wanderers'), albeit they were more concerned with the fixed stars when it came to casting horoscopes. They saw, for example, that the red planet's proximity/position seemed to coincide with outbreaks of war, therefor he must be the bloody, war deity. (Red stars or Moon were also associated with bloodshed, back then…there was a lot of it going on). No problem finding a Greek persona for him, either, as every culture had a war god. Interestingly, Ares-Mars' metal was iron before his high iron content was known. Also, it would not have been possible to see his battle scars without a telescope, but there they were. Astrological Mars is viewed as masculine, egocentric, expressive, aggressive, hot energy. If it is repressed or held back it becomes angry, toxic or self-sabotaging; 'malefic'. But when honored, Mars is healthy, vital energy that we require. Mars' firey, bold nature makes him suited to Aries, but not all Aries are athletes and soldiers. Most are bold in their approach, though, be they brainiacs or April Fools. Spring calls for it.



Diagram of the positions of the seven planets on 18 March 816. (Roman ?)

As symbols, the planets have absorbed the collective projections of every culture, mostly the Greco-Roman, who's names and mythology have stuck. But we should not be too fixed on these. Robert Graves notes that many Greek myths did, once upon a time, originate with actual events and not from the 'collective unconscious,' in the Jungian sense. At one time, pictures and symbols - emblems - were how people commemorated and remembered events. Later, when things were recorded in writing, mythstory was replaced with history. The masculine word over the feminine symbol. As unwritten stories become relegated to distant memory, dreamtime and museums, yes, they became archetypal, but they were no less true. Therefore a myth is not the same as a lie. As well, there are many instances where the symbolism was purposely injected with a new meaning, like the 12 signs of the zodiac becoming the 12 apostles, the 4 royal stars of the fixed signs becoming the evangelists and the Sun becoming the Son. It doesn't mean these players never existed, but by inserting them into existing, symbolic/mythic roles, it assures them a long and elevated  life. Surely that was the intention, when the Greeks and Romans imprinted their own pantheon onto the planets ?

Ancient Roman zodiac unearthed in Qarat el-Muzawwaqa, Egypt, created in the 1st or 2nd century AD


Did you know …

Earth is the only planet that goes by an Anglo-Germanic name, not a Roman one ?



Some things to (re)consider when interpreting the planets, asteroids, etc:
- The actual planetary characteristics (Mars; red, iron content, 4th sphere from Sun)
- Conditions surrounding it's discovery (Uranus; revolution/scientific exploration)
- Symbol/glyph (Uranus and Chiron; keys ?)
- Archetype (Saturn; Father Time, Hermit)
- Greco-Roman god + other incarnations (Aphrodite; Venus, Ishtar, Inanna)
- Alchemical (Moon; Silver, feminine, liquid)
- Musical keys ?
- Patterns (compare charts)

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Refs/Sources:
Robert Graves, The Greek Myths
Foustel de Coulanges, The Ancient City
A detailed history of the zodiacal Gods by Ken Gillman


All written content herein is copyright ©Roxanna Bikadoroff 2017.



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