Featured Sign – Pisces

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Pisces is one of our most nebulous of signs. Think of deep, deep water, dark and cold yet teeming with life which we can barely even imagine. That is Pisces. Hard to grasp – like a fish – and often hidden, even to themselves, yet so full of potential.

Pisces is the last Sign of the Zodiac, it is a completion, but not in the sense of coming back to where you started, rather, you have absorbed all the lessons of the first 11 signs and this is the culmination, where we go into the dark cave to let it germinate, ferment, to ponder and wonder, and to prepare for the birth into a whole new cycle. Like Brenda Heim and Doug Hays’ bronze Enso sculpture, the end doesn’t meet at the beginning because in fact it is about launching into the new spiral, the new spin of the Wheel.

This sign is also dichotomous, because it rules the fine line between saints and sinners, angels and demons, criminals and police, the leap of faith . . . or the deep darkness of despair. When one can truly manifest all that Pisces is, you will perceive a human being of deepest compassion and kindness, one who can even help people die because they understand that Death too is but a fine line between here and there, now and then.

Last night I saw the angels knocking at the tavern door,
Modelling the clay of man, becoming drunk with the original wine.
The inhabitants of the sacred enclosure and of the divine malakut
Drank from one cup with me, the pilgrim.

From: “The Green Sea of Heaven” by Diwan of Hafiz

 

Featured Sign – Sagittarius

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Sagittarius is one of those Signs which really points out the differences between traditional and esoteric astrology. For one thing, the Earth is its planetary ruler; traditional astrology doesn’t even use the Earth. How can we not use the planet upon which we live and move and have our being? And what of the astrology of the future? When an astrologer is living on – oh, say Mars for example – a colony of folks are already signed up to land there in 2023 – is that astrologer supposed to look out into the vast sky full of stars and planets and say, “Oh, I think I’ll just ignore the Earth!” This really is an astrology for the future.

Sagittarius rules Travel, but not just that form of travel; it is the Inner Journey it is most concerned with. Sagittarius rules the Seeker on the Path. The horse – ruled by Sagittarius – is a common theme in dreams when one is “on the move.” It is a symbol of travel, movement, nobility and a wild, free spirit, all of which Sagittarius is about. Doug Hays’ sculpture is a beautiful example of the sense of both nobility and movement, the movement of wind through the hair when one is on the move, wind through the Soul.

Sagittarius also rules the Native American culture – those who revered and lived on the Earth as a Mother, as something to be respected and cared for, not to be owned or abused. I do not suggest that “The Noble Savage” was/is a perfect human being – they are as human as any other – only that they were indeed connected to the Earth in ways that European cultures had forgotten. They would understand well James Lovelock’s theory (today quite accepted) of Gaia, a living Earth. Today, many are hungry for the Ancient Wisdom of shamanic and native ways; luckily there are some who are willing to share the knowledge.

Worrell, shaman sculptureBill Worrell’s Sculpture on Stone is indicative of one who incorporates everything about him/her as part of a belief system. Deer, Birds, Sun and Stone – we are all One and part of the One. Mitakye Oyasin – We are all One, is a common mantra we could all live by. Mother Earth is failing due to modern man’s concept of Dominion over the Earth. She needs our help, now.

I leave this dialogue with the thoughts of 2 different Wise Men:

Humankind has not woven the web of life. We are but one thread within it. Whatever we do to the web, we do to ourselves. All things are bound together. All things connect.

– Chief Seattle, 1854

and . . .

And while I stood there I saw more than I can tell, And I understood more than I saw; For I was seeing in a sacred manner the shapes of things in the spirit, and the shape of all shapes as they must Live together like one being.

– Black Elk, Black Elk Speaks

Featured Sign – Scorpio

 

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Scorpio is the sign of tests and tribulations, to which I can attest even when creating this blog!! But I won’t bore you with the details of how none of this – pictures or text – would line up as desired. I did, however recognize it as the perfect metaphor for Scorpio! Do I give up and go on? Well, eventually I did yes, because I did want to get this post out before it was the season of Sagittarius!!! So what you see is what you get . . . which is not necessarily true of Scorpio!

This is the sign into which we incarnate when we have already proven strength and durability in previous signs. Our Souls of course, do not wish for us to fail even if it does give us many hurdles to overcome and battles – inner or outer – to fight. This is the time when we are given the most delicious of senses and made very aware of them. And just when we most wish to succumb to all of those driving urges and sensuous desires – why else would we be given such experiences? – we realize that they, like the material world, are also part of the Grand Illusion. This is when the Dweller on the Threshold faces the Angel of the Shining Presence to do battle.

Hence the artwork above. Brenda Heim’s abstract work on the left makes me think of a warrior leaping out to do battle with his/her mighty sword. Mars is the planetary ruler of Scorpio and is often thought of as the God of blood and battles. But it is the battle within which the Disciple must fight. And of course it is the Angel, like this beautiful bronze sculpture by Peter Chinni, which we hope will win this battle of the senses, of Evil against Good, of Reality against the Grand Illusion.

The trials of Hercules as depicted in “The Labours of Hercules, An Astrological Interpretation,” by Alice Bailey depicts a particular trial every one of the signs is meant to undergo. But in fact, because Scorpio is all about testing and trials, the whole book could be said to be Scorpion literature. Yet, I choose the tale particularly aimed at Scorpio to quote here:

“Hercules was told to find the nine-headed hydra that lived in a stench-drenched bog.” This is a metaphor for the caverns of the mind. “The burning arrows of flaming aspiration must be discharged before its presence is revealed.” Hercules finds the hydra and attempts to cut off one head at a time, but in each destroyed head’s place grow two more. By chopping at bits of the beast, he only aided in its becoming stronger. “As long as Hercules fought in the bog, amid the mud slime, and quicksand, he was unable to overcome the hydra.”

“Then Hercules remembered that his Teacher had said, ‘We rise by kneeling.’ Casting aside his club, Hercules knelt, grasped the hydra with his bare hands and raised it aloft. Suspended in mid-air, its strength diminished. On his knees then, he held the hydra high above him, that purifying air and light might have their due effect. The monster, strong in darkness and in sloughy mud, soon lost its power when the rays of the sun and the touch of the wind fell on it . . . But only when they lifeless lay did Hercules perceive the mystic head was immortal. Then Hercules cut off the hydra’s one immortal head and buried it . . . ‘The victory is won,’ the Teacher said. ‘The Light that shines at Gate the 8th is now blended with your own.'”