This is written in four parts. They are:
1. An intro to astrology through a discussion of the Ecliptic
2. The astrology of the Eclipse as I see it
3. The big action of the Month of Gemini
4. A selection of degree symbols from John Sandbach’s Chandra Symbols, with interpretations by Ellias Lonsdale.
I recommend printing this out and keeping it near your commode to read in peace. To get the essence of the eclipse, just read part 2 and the first symbol in part 4.
Part 1 – intro to Eclipses and other stuff.
The “Ecliptic” is the plane of the Earth’s orbit around the Sun. You could think of it as an infinite disc, with the Sun in the center. While the Earth travels around the Sun, the constellation behind the Sun is the sign the Sun is “in.” The Sun is always on the Ecliptic.
A really interesting fact about the constellations on the Ecliptic is that none of them are actually 30 degrees wide. In other words, there aren’t actually definite boundaries to them. So when you get someone who is “not sure what sign they are” because they “were born on the cusp,” you can say to them that no one actually knows for sure where the “cusp” between the signs is.
And then there’s the precession of the equinoxes to worry about. Plus you’ll hear from time to time about Ophiucus, the “13th sign….” “Technically” there are more than 12 divisions of the zodiac, and none of them is actually the size astrologers assign them.
I have heard that, among astrologers who use the sidereal (or “true”) zodiac, there is a fair amount of confrontation over which “ayanamsha” to use. The ayanamsha is like the dial on the outside of a diver’s watch. Where do you set zero?
If you think about this stuff for very long, you can lose your faith in astrology (and a lot more besides – though that’s another article).
The thing that takes you so far into the “details” that you can lose sight of the great truths is what is known as “the little mind.” It’s that part of you that treats the unknown as scary; that wants to “scientifically” explain every nuance of life. It’s the part of you that gets you to the airport way earlier than you need to so that there’s “no chance” that you’ll miss your plane.
It’s interesting to note that we tend to stereotype “Western” thought as being more scientific, while we generally think of mystical and cosmic thought as coming from the East. Actually, “Eastern” astrologers are the ones most likely to argue over where the “zero” on the astrological dial is.
Western astrologers use what is known as the “tropical” zodiac, which allows the solstices and equinoxes to set the dial. In other words, it’s based on the orientation of the Earth to the Sun, rather than of the Sun to the constellations on the Ecliptic.
If you made it through 6th grade, you know about the tilt of the Earth’s orbital axis, that the Northern Hemisphere is tilted towards the Sun during the months of June and July, and…. Let’s not be tedious.
But let’s do bring in the Moon. The plane of the Moon’s orbit around the Earth, oddly enough, is NOT the same as the plane of the Earth’s orbit around the Sun. So sometimes the Moon is above the Ecliptic and sometimes it is below the Ecliptic. Silly, inconstant, moody, feminine Moon!
The Sun, meanwhile, is always on the Ecliptic. Silly, constant, erupting, masculine Sun!
The places where the Moon’s orbit intersects the Ecliptic are called the Moon’s “nodes.” (Actually, every planet has nodes, but that is another ‘nother article). The North, or Ascending Node is where the Moon’s orbit breaks through the plane of the Ecliptic on its way up, and the South, or Descending Node is where it breaks through the plane of the Ecliptic on its way down.
When the Moon is at one of its nodes, it is “on the Ecliptic,” and if that coincides with a New or Full Moon, we get an Eclipse! If it’s on a Full Moon, then the Earth is between the Sun and the Moon and we get a Lunar Eclipse – the Sun will be on one node, and the Moon on the other.
If it’s on a New Moon, then the Moon is on the Ecliptic and between us and the Sun, so we get a Solar Eclipse.
On a Solar Eclipse, both the Sun and the Moon are lined up on the same node.
So, I think I covered the technicalities of Eclipses fairly well, and what I want to say about constellations and astrology in general is that, what astrology is describing in a physical sense is the influence that cosmic (gravitational) forces have on the super-subtle electrical circuitry of your body. Just think of the Moon’s gravity sloshing around all the world’s oceans, and then admit that your body is 70% water and that there’s probably some sloshing around there, too. And the energy vector between the Sun and the Moon is just the grossest, most blatant expression of astrological energies. All the other stuff is way more subtle and you have to think in terms of running a very weak magnet over a wire and the effect it has on the current in there.
Voila! You’re now an astrologer. Now you’re ready for Part 2.
Part 2 – the (non-linear) astrology of tomorrow’s Solar Eclipse.
At 4:47 PM Pacific time on May 20th, 2012, the Moon is New in the 1st degree of Gemini and is (loosely) conjunct the South (or descending) Node. For all the astronomical details of this eclipse, please visit, http://spaceweather.com/.
If you briefly consider the phenomenon of any eclipse from a primitive point of view, you can understand why people can make such a big thing of an Eclipse. And many are making a big deal out of this one. And it is a big deal in terms of the opportunity to do spiritual work that it offers.
A lot of astrologers have been and are going to be sending out articles relating this eclipse to all kinds of definite physical and spiritual effects. It is easy to succumb to the desire to have someone tell you “how things are going to be.” And it is just as easy to succumb to the desire to “know” how things are going to be.
The reason I’ve put so much effort into letting you know just how non-specific astrology is is because this eclipse is on the South Node and in Gemini. And the energy of Gemini is the polarity between light and dark, between hope and doubt, between fear and love.
There is a way of thinking in astrology that says that we are here to undertake a journey from the south node to the north node. That you are trying to get away from your south node, to your north node (meaning in your birth chart). But that is linear and the Moon doesn’t cotton much to linearity. So it can’t be that simple.
The way I think of the South node of the Moon is that it is how you experience the consequence of your actions.
The north node is the energy you’re learning to embody in your actions so that you can emanate a frequency which creates the kinds of opportunities you want.
You’re always trying to do the north node, and whenever your energy changes from the experience of the new to the experience of the consequence of whatever you’ve just done, you’re learning through your south node what you liked or disliked about that north node attempt. Whether you’re basking in the glow of a job well-done, or facing the judge for something illegal you’ve done, you’re experiencing it in a way that your south node can help you understand and benefit from.
So, that’s nodes in the birth chart.
The nodes on a daily basis are modifiers to how you experience the nodes in your birth chart.
And the south node in Gemini is teaching you something about how you can tend to retreat into doubt whenever you experience the consequence of attempting to live your vision (north node in Sag).
This New Moon is more than anything a great opportunity to learn to love the consequences of your actions so that you may emanate a more delicious frequency into the universe, thereby receiving more joyous opportunities.
Part 3 – and Further and More.
Venus went retrograde in the 24th degree of Gemini on May 15th. When Mercury or Venus is retrograde, it is when they’re on the same side of the Sun as we are. Because of their fast orbits this happens pretty frequently. This particular Venus retrograde is especially exciting to astronomers because on June 5th, Venus will “transit the face of the Sun.” The alignment won’t be as exact again until 2117. Most likely a once-in-a-lifetme thing, wouldn’t you say?
Another way to think of this is that Venus will be on the Ecliptic and in essence we’ll have an eclipse of the Sun caused by Venus. Of course, due to the scale and distance involved, we’ll still see the Sun, but nevertheless, there is in some way a metaphysical significance to this transit that is similar to the significance of this New Moon.
And you know, we used to live in world where the metaphysical and astronomical significance of cosmic movements was inseparable. And I hope we get there again, because no matter how you slice it, this stuff is a reflection of what you are feeling and the denial of feelings is what is killing our Mother Earth.
Which is why I want to point out that at the same time that Venus is “eclipsing” the Sun, Neptune will be stationing retrograde. Which is to say that the basic connection we feel with each other through a sense of the sacred will be screaming for you to feel it, identify it, and learn to consciously activate it, on that day.
So, all this action on the Ecliptic in Gemini as we are heading into what is possibly the most intense summer of our lives is saying something about hope – we keep getting these opportunities to re-commit to believing in what we want. We keep getting these opportunities to look at how and why we doubt, and to realize that the consequence of doubt is that the frequency we emanate brings us more to doubt. And that we are connected to each other in this – that we have a collective frequency.
Because so much is happening in Gemini this year, let me point out that the feelings we are most likely to deny are the ones that arise from fear. And what is the most terrifying feeling of all? Hope is – because if you hope, you can fail. As long as you are in doubt, you can’t fail. Much more comfortable, that.
In fact, the universe is so wanting us to pay attention to this polarity that this year, we get two New Moons in Gemini. The first of course is on May 20th, in Gemini 1. The second is on June 19th, in Gemini 29.
We who wish to be helping the Earth are being asked, during the Month of Gemini, 2012, to really get clear on what it means to doubt. Because we are up against it, brothers and sisters. The action is coming. Will you help us hope our way into a more beautiful future for the whole human race, or will you doubt your way into your own dark and comfortable corner?
Part 4 – the symbolism in it all.
On May 20th, 2012, at 4:47 PM Pacific Time, the Sun and Moon join hands on the Ecliptic in the 1st degree of Gemini. Here is an interpretation of that degree from Ellias Lonsdale, the Master:
Gemini 1 “Knots in a cord. They are a message in code”
Signaling to all attending beings that something is happening here which is endangered, promising, riddled with problems and wondrously permeated with talent, intelligence, and a flowing grace of the rarest kind. The shadow is intense. The impulse is very great. The stakes are the highest. What will prevail?
The bright central impulse lies in aligning with all that is of such spaciousness that no matter what arises, it is welcome, it is part of it-all is as intended. This frequency can flourish whenever it is free and joyous and in no way driven back on itself. If it spontaneously overflows in the moment into the entire surround, there is this contagious wave of YES, this ripple of excitement and activation.
The contorted shadow reflection is taken up with such a mountain-load of doubt and hesitation and mental anxiety that when this comes on strong, the light goes out, the energy folds back on itself, and there is this ghostly quality of perpetual absence combined with an undertow of suspicion and something feeling very wrong.
The soul sounds out a cry, a call for help, for perspective, for anything that can redeem the duality repetition syndrome. The one inside feels like they cannot get anywhere, because each bright interval is followed by the opposite play of confusion and distortion. What is to be done?
This is one for spirit intervention. The fuller and more wakeful the call, the higher the spiritual response. It is collective, it is personal, it is everything-at-once. We need a deep equanimity, a whole seeing, a light that is not shadowed by darkness. If the mind can give over to a vaster consciousness, if the past can yield to an open future, all will be well.
There is this edge where it seems alive and powerful to be held taut between and among all these divergent impulses. Yet the finest attunement comes in silent vigil, free of preferences and desire.
On June 5th, 2012, at 6:05 PM Pacific Time, Venus eclipses the Sun in the 16th degree of Gemini. Once again, from Ellias:
Gemini 16 “A single sunflower wilting and dropping its seeds”
Giving the self over. Being ready, fully ripe to sacrifice, to renounce, to offer, to become aligned into the bright spirit of the future and the emergent energies arising on every hand.
More than eager to break the self open, to let separative egoism go. Engaged within a process of liberation, of stripping away what is no longer useful, of very publicly and openly saying No to what has bound us up and saying Yes to the path of joyous free expression in a selfless mode.
Inspired and infused with a greater spirit call. Going for it. Willing to put the self through absolutely anything that can make it possible for core spirit to shine through as never before. Radiant with the hope and the dream, the promise and the vision.
Most potently driven to give of one’s best to those around. An aptitude for offering one’s very self upon the altar of where we all are going together. Seeing it, knowing it, becoming it.
Genius for merging within greater spheres of being. A desire to be used by spirit for planetary evolution. A dedication to become the worthiest of vessels. And a mind-bogglingly ferocious will and intent to carry through, to temper excesses, to be done with whatever gets in the way.
Standing for vaster truths and ultimate realities. Able to fathom the cosmic spirit in its total nature and purposive motivation behind all that happens here. A persuasive invocation of new paradigms, of what we all need to see and to make way for.
An irrepressible spirit who is always able to tap some further layer of resonance and capacity. The resolve to make the very most of this self and be free of its bindings.
On that same day, Neptune is stationing retrograde in the 4th Degree of Pisces. It’s a mutable thing – we’re asked to really learn what is going on. Again, from Ellias:
Pisces 4 “Mushrooms springing up everywhere”
Proliferation of impulses, desires, needs, longings, and probes into every corner of infinity. A fast spreading fever of suspicions, intoxication’s, idealizations, disillusionment’s, frustrations. Giving the self away to everybody, to all worlds, whatever comes along. Desperate to be free of self, to experience something new, to find a different world to be in.
A chaotic turbulence of creativity that is unharnessed and impulsive. No boundaries. No sense of direction. A magnificent display of fragments and facets and soul moods and gifts and virtues and strange notions. The past blown open and showing up everywhere. A very difficult time finding true bearings.
Within this predicament lies another world altogether. Uniting with it depends upon being able to stretch and expand until the full range of the soul is acknowledged, is lived into, is given permission to be as free- form as it really is. If such an eventuality should come into being, the most astounding transformation, the truest of metamorphosis can spring forth into being.
This future fish, this unbounded one carries the very special charge of opening up spaces where they seemed to be shut. A capacity to spread around and give everything turns out to be viable, true, something that is meant to be this way. It’s all a matter of where you look at it from. If you take the deep inside under-view, the one the Earth accords with, you will find that infinite bounty and grace was here all along and had no idea where it fit within the existing state of affairs. Just a touch of letting be into his hyper-fertile field of forces turns it from a frenzy into the world’s fertile future dream.
And then on June 19th, 2012, at 8:02 AM Pacific Time, the Moon is New in the 29th Degree of Gemini. Every New Moon is an opportunity to dedicate yourself to the ride of the month to come. Each time you do so, you get better at staying present within the intensity of life here. When you are able to realize that true bliss is the embracing of life as an opportunity, well then, we are all further along our way.
This is the New Moon that is asking you to commit to keeping your hands up and a smile on your face while you scream through the rest of the summer. Maybe go ride a rollercoaster a couple of times for practice.
Again, the Chandra symbol with interpretation from Ellias:
Gemini 29 “A garden planted solely with shade plants”
Tending the flame of the hidden inward depths and making sure that it is the forgotten realms which are given special attention, now that the surface world of the usual has proven to be too far out there to keep it going.
Being impelled by a subtle instinct to look away from the obvious, the outstanding, and to look toward whatever is hard to get inside of and come to terms with it first.
Such a tortuous course of championing the underdog, of blanking out the usual considerations and tuning in freely to whatever cannot be figured out or easily handled. A search for a shift in momentum, a different future. And a willingness to take extended cycles for the purposes of going down into the shadows and being alive to whatever is met in just the places nobody wants to go.
A profoundly intensive identification with what is missing, what is forgotten, what needs to be tracked by heavy means. Almost a perverse thrill to know that what is being pursued is very hard for others to take. The sense is that if it hurts, it’s probably the right direction and if everybody says ouch, go there and stay there.
Playing out an old karma at the edge of the infinite future. Being drawn back under to get in touch with the saboteur within. Also meeting those same extremes and excesses through others, through the collective, in every direction. Tending to imagine that both inside and everywhere around there is the same trickery, deception, stuff to both engross, and be repelled by, at another level.
The nasty, grim, yet also rewarding and challenging passage through territory which can snag heartily and which can liberate inwardly. The underworld initiation .
Being primed for the very worst. Expecting and awaiting the tragic and the desperate edges. Tune into the margins and the crises. So inside of darkness that it can be turned to light.
Okay, next time we’ll talk about outer planet retrogrades, the Pluto/Uranus square, getting ready to follow Saturn into Scorpio… all that stuff.
Embrace the cycle, my loves. The whole thing. When you love all of it, it all loves you!