If a man cannot be a Christian in the place where he is, he cannot be a Christian anywhere. Henry Ward Beecher
When the missionaries came to Africa they had the Bible and we had the land. They said, “Let us pray”. We closed our eyes. When we opened them we had the Bible and they had the land. Desmond Tutu
The belief that there is only one truth and that oneself is in possession of it seems to me the deepest root of all evil that is in the world. Max Born
It is easier to pull down than to build up. Proverb
In the beginning was the word and it was misunderstood. Native American Saying
Claim the vicinity in the name of divinity. Steve Tripp
January's new Moon falls on January 20 in the United States and January 21 in Australia. This new moon is a 'supermoon' - our good friend Richard Nolle coined this phrase as ". . . a new or full moon which occurs with the moon at or near (within 90% of) its closest approach to Earth". for more on this phenomena, click here. As such, it may be felt as a powerful new Moon, certainly, as we've been experiencing for quite a long time now, it is a time for insights, revelations and changes.
The Sabian Symbol for the new Moon is Aquarius 1: An Old Adobe Mission In California.
This is a symbol of man’s ability to take natural materials from the environment to build something lasting and enduring that protects, sustains and nourishes the community on every level. The ‘Old Adobe Missions’ were built in the early days of California in an attempt to bring civilization to this wild area. Although these ‘Missions’ hold a certain romance in history, people have polarized perspectives of their actual significance. There’s the romantic colonial version of altruistic Spanish missionaries and soldiers laboring to bring religion and European culture to the backward native peoples, and then there’s the revisionist version: white intruders subjugating and persecuting the Indians, indoctrinating them with religion, killing them off with strange new diseases and obliterating their culture. Somewhere in the middle, the truth can most likely be found.
Sometimes it’s easy to assume that one’s beliefs are right and that others need to be shown the “real truth” or a better way to live their life. Efforts sometimes need to be turned toward creating the infrastructure to pursue our beliefs and way of life and this can enrich everyone’s lives. There is a need for the provision of faith, love and shelter to those who require it. However, the effort may be too big for some and may leave them feeling “homesick”, “homeless” or without a cause. It may be a case of someone trying to change or dominate the core beliefs of someone else, causing emotional restriction and pain. The truth to be remembered is that contributing to other's lives and caring about people in a community is not about control, but acceptance of, and reverence for, each person’s divinity. There’s no need for strict conformity, manipulation or pretension here.
Keywords: Spiritual retreats in natural surroundings. Finding new areas to work with spirit. Creating civilization out of natural elements. Hard work to create places of sanctuary and learning. Places once revered now tourist attractions. Forging links to new worlds. Missions and missionaries. Bringing faith to the “new world”. Brotherhoods. Places that house and protect.
The Caution: Dogmatism. Pushing beliefs and ideas onto others. Believing one’s spiritual and religious beliefs contain all the answers. Taking over others' lives. Moving in and taking control. Monuments to the past sagging and fading. People moving in on others. Cults. Indoctrination.
Immense power is acquired by assuring yourself in your secret reveries that you were born to control affairs. Andrew Carnegie
The ‘Directors’ come together as there are decisions to be made and plans to be discussed and pursued. Wherever those in authority gather, they rule and govern outcomes for themselves and others. A ‘Large Firm’ can manifest in any area of life—on an emotional, spiritual or physical level.
There can be a feeling of being out of direct control of the decisions being made by the ‘Directors of a Large Firm’. No matter how much you are on the “inside”, you may not be hearing all that is being said. Hence, there’s a need to be cautious about what you presume, or imagine, to be really going on. Are you involved in a process without really knowing the bigger picture? You may be excluded because you don’t really have enough knowledge of the system, or have the authority, to make an informed decision or to call the shots. However, you, or others, may just be “shut out”. Things kept from others can be very painful, especially when the truth comes to light. The belief that someone is spying on others, or talking about them, can lead to a sense of paranoia with suspicion of the motives pervading the atmosphere. Information may be deliberately withheld as a way of maintaining power by secrecy. Call on the appropriate knowledgeable friends or authorities, with them you may be able to iron out the details. Some may not want others to know what’s going on, or is that just how it looks from the outside? This Symbol can also be about the processing of inner issues and thoughts. Things may feel out of your control and influenced by unknown forces. Be aware of what’s happening, although you may feel as though you are being shut out, you can still make an effort to be heard or at least make your presence felt. Strategies may need to be made and carried out in the best way for all involved.
Keywords: Sharing innermost secrets. Confidential information. Masterly control. Big guys calling the shots. Being too busy to see people of “lesser” importance in your life. Rationing time. Governments and secrets. Spies. Privy Councils. Planning and plotting. Having a say in things. Doors. Whispers. Records of meetings. Important meetings. Boards of directors and secretaries. Conspiracies.
The Caution: Excluding some. Exploiting people or situations. Elitism. Being controlled by those above. Decisions made behind closed doors. Dark rooms and huddled people talking. Concealing the truth from others. Cliques and committees. Suspicions of motives.
The Quest Symbol (the degree following) of the new Moon is Aquarius 2: An Unexpected Thunderstorm. This can be alarming, but it can also be very illuminating and wonderful. We get zapped by that energy and all kinds of good things can come about.
Keywords: Sudden visitations of natural wonder. Something that drops on you, seemingly from out of nowhere. Things erupting and happening fast. Storms in a teacup. Shocks and confrontations with raw energy. Thunder, lightning and electricity. The Tower card of the tarot. Being a lightning rod. Water and rain that quenches and revives. Things being unleashed.
The Caution: Losing control without warning. Emotional instability. A “back draft” of emotions. Bottling up and blowing up. Confused by sudden outbursts. Loud bangs and crashes that shock and stun. Seizing up with fear. Sudden unleashing of emotions. Hurricanes of messy energy
Uranus, the ruler of this new Moon, is exactly conjunct (together with) the Moon's south node. Both are on Aries 13: A Bomb Which Failed To Explode Is Now Safely Hidden From Discovery. As I've mentioned previously, although the 'Bomb' is said to be 'Safely Hidden', with Uranus there, there is a good chance that there might be some 'explosions' to deal with. Now, explosions can come in all shapes and sizes and intensities, and, they can be shocking, revealing, liberating or any number of things in their effects. There could be, especially with the Quest Symbol of the Unexpected Thunderstorm, big insights and revelations that bring about changes, or the desire for change.
As in an explosion, I would erupt with all the wonderful things I saw and understood in this world. Boris Pasternak
Uranus and the south node being exactly conjunct is saying that's it's time to let go of old attitudes, relationships, issues, possessions, clutter, weight issues, etc, and to let go of them in order to heal issues from the past. It seems we are set to 'rewrite the book' on who we are. Many people are set to walk away from the things that aren't working and this will be a liberating act, although some may be rather shocked at how suddenly it happens. Sudden revelations are bound to be part of the picture. Pluto is also in the mix here, as it is squaring the nodes and Uranus.
Keywords: Pressure valves. Getting away with something. Tantrums and frustration. Tempers that simmer. Explosive behavior. Bombs, explosions. Sudden and forceful events. Intelligence organizations, CIA, FBI, ASIO, etc. Valuable lessons of self-restraint. Relief from problems. Discharging nervous energy. Security checks. Last minute escapes.
The Caution: Suppressing stress or illness. Doing inappropriate things and thinking the secret safe. Repressing emotions. Undefined anger. Pressure cooker energy that needs to be released slowly. Explosions damaging more than expected. Activists. Deception behind one’s back. Clash of ideals. Terrorism.
Very soon after the new Moon, three or so days after, Uranus moves onto Aries 14: A Serpent Coiling Near A Man And A Woman. Uranus spent months on this degree last year and it's here again, bringing tension, insight, difficulty and release, particularly around relationships. Relationships, or one's understanding of them, can go through major upheavals, realignments and adjustments, etc. The 'revelation of knowledge' can lead to understanding what's really going on around relationships.
Adam and Eve had many advantages, but the principal one was that they escaped teething. Mark Twain
Keywords: Enticement. Allurement. Revealing archetypal knowledge that may not be “socially acceptable”. Temptations. The Adam and Eve story. Jealousy. Sexual instincts. Life and death issues. Relating based on control. Kundalini energy. Realizing polarity. Individuation. Eating the Apple. The “knowledge of good and evil”. Having one’s eyes opened. Marking one’s territory.
The Caution: Feeling guilty. Being afraid to express one’s feelings. Basic instincts and sexual energy. The fear of knowledge, secret or otherwise. Using sexuality as a control device. Disgust or distrust of the body. Sexually transmitted diseases. Hiding nudity or sexuality. Being thrown out of paradise.
Pluto is on Capricorn 14: An Ancient Bas-Relief Carved In Granite Remains A Witness To A Long-Forgotten Culture. Pluto on this Symbol has been uncovering several ancient sites - it's been interesting to observe. In our own lives, it can show how we can be a 'witness' to our past - what has been 'carved in granite' that you perhaps need to let go of? Pluto has, for ages now, been squared by Uranus and it is squaring the Moon's nodes as well. This is bringing up all kinds of messages and the need to transform our lives in ways that will benefit our future.
Write your injuries in dust, your benefits in marble. Benjamin Franklin
Either we make history or remain a victim of it. Anonymous
Keywords: Anonymous immortality. Things written or carved in stone, or concrete. Permanent records. Clues from the past. Things that should be shaped and changed with the times. Pieces of art or sculpture. Things that belong in a museum. Inscriptions and carvings. Ancient civilizations and their relics. History.
The Caution: Limitations that don’t allow for changes. Old and outworn situations. Things that can not, or will not, ever change. Memories frozen in time. Feeling stuck, like no growth is possible. Frigidity of feelings.
The Moon's north node is on Libra 13: Children Blowing Soap Bubbles. This placement could bring up things such as - are you having enough fun in your life? Are you being creative? Do you find time to play? Are you finding that your thoughts and words need to be more in line with the truth of who you are? Are you wanting your life to be more authentically about who you are now? Empty words and empty promises won't cut it any more.
Where there is joy there is creation. Where there is no joy there is no creation: know the nature of joy. Upanishads
Keywords: Spending time being creative with children. Drama. Being carefree or superficial. Finding joy in pure abstractions. Captions in cartoons. Pollyanna attitudes that can lead to fun or nowhere. Not caring about the future, only the moment. Rediscovering the simple joys of life. Toys and playing. Soap and bubbles. Comic book heroes. Being easily amused. Fun. Playing with friends.
The Caution: Never growing up. Frivolousness. Daydreaming. Resenting people who don’t have serious work. Upset over the loss of things that don’t have lasting substance. Not meaning what’s said. Making light of the serious. Moving on without completing anything of lasting value. Dislike of chitchat. Gullibility. Impractical behavior. Not knowing when to stop talking.
Where there is joy there is creation. Where there is no joy there is no creation: know the nature of joy. Upanishads
Mercury is on Aquarius 17: A Watchdog Standing Guard Protecting His Master And His Possessions.
CERBERUS, n. The Watchdog of Hades, whose duty it was to guard the entrance - against whom or what does not clearly appear; everybody, sooner or later, had to go there, and nobody wanted to carry off the entrance. Ambrose Bierce - The Devil's Dictionary
Keywords: Guardianship. Things that stand guard and protect. Being on the alert against invasion or other trouble. Loyalty, possessiveness. Jealousy. The worry of loss. Alarm and security systems. Locks. Watchdogs. Being afraid of intrusion. Survival instincts. Bouncers and musclemen. Security guards. Constantly checking up. Sudden responses. Having one's ear to the ground for danger.
The Caution: Suspicion and paranoia that rob the joy of ownership. Being unable to let down one’s guard because of the possibility of invasion or attack. Feelings of being exposed. Possible betrayal. Greed. Envy. Lust for power. Having others do “the dirty work”. Stool pigeons. Spying. Stooges. Being the fall guy. Worrying endlessly about loss. Resenting intrusion. Jealousy.
Almost immediately after the new Moon, within two hours to be exact, Mercury moves onto Aquarius 18: A Man Being Unmasked At A Masquerade. Mercury goes retrograde on the 21st on this degree. Therefore, this is a major theme of Mercury and it sits on this degree for quite a few days, both at the beginning of the retrograde and again when it passes over this degree again around the 4th March. With Mercury here, secrets will be revealed, realisations will be dropping into place and it will be interesting to see what happens on the world stage. Who will have their 'mask' stripped away? And, what masks can you remove so you can more authentically both see yourself and reveal yourself to others?
Keywords: Secret motives exposed. Having to face one’s self. Facing the truth about another. Coming to terms with judgments about one’s true worth. Owning up to who one truly is. Being able to see through characters and trickery. Wearing a ‘Mask’ that suits the situation. Insights into people. Dropping pretense. Stripping away cover-ups. Aliases. Finding or revealing one's true self. The desire for authenticity.
The Caution: Detrimentally revealing yourself too quickly or too early. Being found out to be a fraud. Finding answers that aren’t welcome. Layers of deception discovered. Charades, pretense and ploys to manipulate. Lies. Assumed identities.
Venus is on Aquarius 21: A Rug Placed On The Floor For Children To Play On. This degree is about feeling that one has a safe place to 'land', to be, to live and to flourish. Playing is also part of this degree, but one has to feel safe in order to be able to relax.
Keywords: Comfort and care provided. The caring and longing for children. Having a place of belonging. A sense of security. Rugs, carpets, cribs and cots. Defining areas of possible activity. Being aware of the needs of the young. Adoption. Sleeping on the floor or the sofa. Fun, joy, toys. Playing with others. Nurseries. Day care. Cribs. Play pens.
The Caution: Being overprotected. Not growing up. Insulation from reality. Self-indulgence. Limits of activity. Having the rug pulled. Expecting to be looked after vs. self-reliance. Assuming the young and inexperienced can look after themselves. Lines that shouldn’t be crossed. Territorial attitudes. Always having to watch the young ones. Inability to relax. Infertility.
Right up until moments before the new Moon, Venus is on Aquarius 20: A Woman Disappointed And Disillusioned, Facing A Seemingly Empty Life. Some people, no doubt, will be feeling this. I think this new Moon is about finding our faith, again, that life is going to be ok, even if it's been testing and difficult. We have to have faith - what alternative is there?
Just think how happy you would be if you lost everything you have right now, and then got it back again. Frances Rodman
Keywords: Breaking through illusions. Facing stark reality with hope. Loneliness and depression overcome. Positive outlooks. Counting one’s blessings. Looking towards the future. Having to battle through relationship losses while maintaining a sense of self and purpose. Turning points reached. Having a belief in miracles. Choosing joy.
The Caution: Wallowing in failure. Not seeing the joy and beauty of one’s life. Accepting defeat. Feeling like all is lost. Bitterness. Walling one’s self off from others. Not trusting people. Finding nothing to be happy about. Feeling deserted and alone. Not letting go of the past. Injuries. Infertility. Incurable “dis-eases”. Unrequited love. The loss of the partner. Staring into space. Being a sad, old person.
Mars is on Pisces 7: Illuminated By A Shaft Of Light, A Large Cross Lies on Rocks Surrounded By Sea And Mist. This is a difficult degree and it can be a real challenge to maintain that faith and hope. For some, this can be a wake up call to not trust in those things that don't support us, that don't love us back. Of course, this placement, especially as Mars is conjunct Neptune, is likely to bring up issues to do with the Church, religion, extremism, terrorism, etc. We have had so much of it lately, I think people are getting sick and tired of hearing about it. It's terrorism this and terrorism that. Every single news report contains the word 'terror'. We are being terrorized by the news and I think that we are being more terrorised by the news than we are by actual events. It is constant and it is wearying and debilitating.
Keywords: Renewed dedication after loss. Looking for signs of hope and recovery. Coming to terms with loss or failure. Rocks, mist, howling winds on coasts. Crosses of faith. Important and substantial sacrifices. Being devastated by events. Being in the “spotlight” in difficult times. Finding the way through the dark. The need for sacrifice. Alternative religions. Stepping outside religious boundaries.
The Caution: Lost faith. Hopes dashed. Giving up. Being shattered by the constraints of life. Depression. Feeling like one is being sacrificed, sometimes for nothing. Unable to see through the fog. Scorn, persecution and attack because of religious or social reasons. Hopelessness. Things grim, dark and foreboding.
Neptune is on Pisces 6: A Parade Of Army Officers In Full Dress. There's been a lot of bad press around the police and the armed services and ISIS and Boko Harum, all kinds of negative things have been unfolding that could be explained by Neptune being on this degree. It does, obviously, have it's beauty, though, this degree is about turning up when it's needed, to be able to put on our 'uniform' and get going, to help people out, to know what to do in an emergency, to know how to pull through for both yourself and others. It can be quite selfless, particularly as it's Neptune in Pisces on this degree. Many may feel tired of constantly having to put on a brave face and show up for others. It can be a tiring responsibility and there can be a considerable amount of sacrifice in it.
Keywords: National pride on display. Reminders of those putting life and limb on the line for kin and country. Uniforms, hats. People seeking recognition from the community, regardless of what they’ve personally achieved. Patriotism. Memories of war. Being committed to service. Medals. Stripes. Uniformity. Grinning and bearing it. Projecting the “right image”. Drills and routines. Displays of courage. Assembling together. Braiding and piping. Spit and polish. Parades and marching. Police and law enforcement. Guns and bayonets. The importance of looking good.
The Caution: “Stiff” and unfeeling displays. Having special privileges that others don’t. Doing what one must do. Hiding behind a façade. Not being prepared, or able, to show one’s true self. “Drill sergeants” who scream and shout. People parading their importance. False courage. Taking the glory away from the little people. Wearing anything.
Jupiter is retrograde on Leo 20: American Indians Perform A Ritual To The Sun. Jupiter is opposite both Venus and Mercury, this can bring about a degree of extravagance around spending money, making plans, having big ideas, etc. It can show a wonderful largesse of character, but it can also show were we might do well to examine if we - or others - are being bossy, demanding, wanting too much, blowing things out of proportion, etc. It can also indicate how the 'forces that be' are putting measure in place to keep us more under control, more under surveillance, often through the guise of 'protecting our freedoms' when often, the exact opposite is happening. Our freedoms are being eroded more and more in that measure but we can find liberation and release within ourselves, of course.
Hide not your talents, they for use were made. What's a sundial in the shade? Benjamin Franklin
Keywords: Restoring spirit. Rituals and worship. The desire to return to nature. Shining through one’s life, not through social credentials. Sweat lodges. Drum-beating. Celebrating a unique heritage. Participation with nature’s cycles. Eclipses. Smudging. Reveling in the larger picture leading to belonging and oneness. Fire, passion, spontaneity, sacrifice. Restoring sacredness. American Indian traditions. Vision quests. Fasting. Courage. Conquering bad habits and attitudes. The truth of conviction. Prayer. Eagle feathers. Baptisms of fire.
The Caution: Egoistic responses to life situations leading to narrow responses. Relying on rituals to manifest magic. Losing sight of the meaning of ceremony. Holding onto tradition without intuiting new and modern truths. Living in the past. Cult worship. Losing identity in one’s own culture. Sunstroke.
Saturn is on Sagittarius 3: Two Men Playing Chess. This can bring up arguments and squabbling, but it can also show how it can work to get into 'strategies' in life so you can 'win' and come out on top of situations. The tricky bit might be that it may not work to 'knock out' your 'opponents', but to find better ways to deal with stressful or challenging situations. The 'opponent', of course, can be in our own minds, we may find that we are bickering with our thoughts and trying to find solutions in ways that put us at a disadvantage in life. Mars and Neptune are squaring Saturn, which can bring about a feeling of frustration, sacrifice and loss when really, we would benefit more from taking a breather and looking at possible solutions that could benefit everyone. We can see this playing out on the world stage, too.
Once the game is over, the king and the pawn go back into the same box. Italian proverb
Keywords: Strategic competition. Seeing the picture several moves ahead. Arguments that can go on and on. Finding justification for being combative. Throwing down the gauntlet to the other. Taking lives. The need for peacekeeping. War strategies. Matching wits. Facing each other head on. Being royalty or being a mere pawn. Tactical maneuvers. Lawsuits. Custody. Having the bigger stick. Divorce. Disputes. Wit against wit.
The Caution: Depending on pure luck. Underestimating the opponent’s skill or strategy. Arguments and arguing for the sake of it. Bickering and trying to get the better of the other. Always taking an opposing side, no matter what is really happening.
Chiron is on Pisces 15: An Officer Drilling His Men In A Simulated Attack. Chiron here can have us going over and over things in our minds - what will happen? Is something going to go wrong? Are things going to go pear-shaped? Am I, my life, my city, my country, my religion, my spiritual life, under attack? I have long seen Chiron as The Stories We Tell Ourselves and this Symbol can have us imagining all kinds of scenarios. The trick is to separate out what is real and what is just a figment of our imaginations.
Keywords: Taking orders to better respond to situations. The higher self training the lower self. Exercises. Marching and going through the motions. The need for defense. Seeing ahead. Planning strategies. Fire drills. Smoke alarms. Being prepared. Issuing orders and expecting them to be followed through. Discipline. Martial arts of all kinds. Going over and over possible outcomes. Safeguards put in place. Gas masks and bomb shelters.
The Caution: Rigid routine for no real or valuable purpose. Feeling that one has always to be on the defensive. Being under attack, whether real or imagined. Overreacting to things. Feelings of unworthiness in the face of battle or confrontation. Victim consciousness. Fearful responses. Getting others to respond through spreading fear. Scare tactics.
Well, there are difficult energies in this new Moon, but, if we identify and let go of the fears and the feelings of sacrifice and turn our faces to what is real and valuable in our lives, we can find this time to be a brand new beginning.
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