By Christine Payne-Towler
ArkLetter 64, July 11, 2010
Here we are dear friends, in the thick of the issues that this year’s cosmic alignments have been inexorably driving us towards. The FullMoon Eclipse of late June provided a perfect trigger for the abrupt and intense lock-up that is now hardening around us like plaster in the sun.
My prayer is that we’ve individually been making every effort to create lives that reward us and nurture us above and beyond our bottom-line economic situation. There has never been a better moment than now to unhook from the rat race and peel off, at least in your own mind, from the herd hypnosis that beams out at us from all directions via our mass media sources.
Attentive readers will note a continuing change in my tone and the references I am making. There is no doubt that I am personally engaged with the energetic shifts that are breaking around us from multiple fronts. Speaking as a pattern-recognition person, times like these are hypnotically arresting and demand attention no matter what grid or scale of measure a person is using.
As an astrologer, an esoteric psychologist, a magician and an historian, I can’t help but stand in awe of the converging pressures that are defining our collective moment. Furthermore, as a spiritual alchemist, it seems to be my duty to undergo whatever I am analyzing, and analyze whatever I am undergoing.
We need to know what our bodies know. We need to know what our emotions know. We need to know what our desires know. We need to know what our intuition knows. Without that information, we are stupid and helpless in the face of the massive changes coming down the pike at us.
Case in point -- animals that have any choice in the matter would never hang out where there are vast clouds of toxic effluvium drifting around. They might accidentally become victims of circumstances, but if they have any freedom whatsoever, they will try to move away from the poisons at the first hint of trouble. Anybody with fins, wings or legs will use them automatically, if their senses tell them trouble is on the way. So why haven’t the masses of people living around the Gulf of Mexico started packing yet?
We have been completely disconnected from our literal, survival-level best interests, is why. As a people, we no longer remember ourselves as hunter-gatherers, who could strike camp and melt away into the landscape in mere minutes if necessary. Very few of us humans on the planet right now have ever thought of options B, C, or D in the case where plan A doesn’t work out.
As a people, we have been hypnotized confused and bafflegabbed into believing that our security lies in deferring our power of agency to someone ‘out there’, someone who supposedly has a firm hand on the tiller and can steer the ship of state to safety.
In particular, we have stopped believing in our internal ability to evaluate our own best interests, our capacity to do what is necessary to survive. So we stall and mill around in aimless circles, repeating habitual behaviors and wondering, “What’s going on? Who is going to show us the way?”
Seeking A Bigger Perspective
The shot across my bow, which awakened the urge to write this article, was a link that I followed from my weekend reading of George Ure’s writings over at www.urbansurvival.com and www.peoplenomics.com. I have made an earlier mention of Ure, but I haven’t wanted to flog the subject too hard, preferring to allow developing circumstances to speak ahead of me.
George Ure and his fellow “time monk” Cliff High have been working on a project the last 10 years that appears to be succeeding in monitoring and interpreting the vast and growing tide of linguistics washing through the worldwide web at every minute of every day. They call their discipline Predictive Linguistics, and to my eye, they really have their finger on the pulse of the present (as it slowly arises out of the collective unconscious to ‘suddenly’ appear in the headlines). [See wikipedia on "webbot"]
What’s great about reading Ure is that he and his contacts are not just tracking politics, or economics, or social trends, or new technologies, or ecological developments, or solar cycles, or (fill in the blank), but they are tracking ALL of these things simultaneously, as these things appear and move around within the predictive linguistics. Whatever they focus on turns out to be relevant, because they are directly dowsing the zeitgeist, so I pay daily attention and distill out the parts that fit with what my own radar is telling me.
[Two additional links are radio shows with Clif High. Bear in mind this was conducted on April 1, 2010, prior to the Gulf Oil disaster's ANNOUNCEMENT. The second link is an interview in June POST Oil disaster. The disaster was, by the way, 'predicted' by the HPH webbots...Ed.]
1) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x5KcW2VHPvc -- 1.5 hour interview with George Noory, April 1, 2010 PRE Gulf Explosion
2) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-XD0z-de2i4 = Clif High/Rense Interview - June 24, 2010 POST Gulf Explosion
Is There A Grand Plan At Work?
It was at Ure’s site, then, where I first saw this: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PmhiGy2VPmc&feature=related
This is the first section of a 3-part presentation by Daniel Estulin at the EU Parliament on June 1, 2010. I urge everybody to hang in there through the translation of the introduction, and listen through to the end of all three videos.
And please note: Estulin is somewhat of a latecomer to these ideas, however his testimony gives us a very condensed window on the thinking of those who have devoted their intellectual lives to this topic, in particular Dr. John Coleman.
History Is Destiny
Estulin’s presentation gives us an object lesson of why study of the Renaissance is still relevant for us today. His testimony begins with the idea of the “nation-state republic”, which was first legally defined by the Council of Florence in 1439. This is a foundational premise, which allowed for a second distinction to emerge, that of the “common good”. These elucidations were necessary because the collapse of the Lombardy debt bubble of the late 14th century had cratered the economy of Europe, leading to what has become known as Europe’s ‘new dark age’. It became necessary to find new premises upon which to rebuild society after that sweeping calamity, which cost Europe 1/3 of its population due to starvation.
Very straightforwardly, this council defined the core idea that would be used to measure ‘human progress’ going forward. In particular, the concept of progress is explicitly tied to science and technology from this point in history. This represents a huge break in Christianity’s position, because previously, scientific experimentation was considered impious and sacrilegious.
As early as 400 AD, St. Augustine had censured “the vain and curious desire of investigation, known as knowledge and science.” But after the massive economic crash of the late 1300’s, the Council of Florence accepted the premise that scientific and technological progress was to be a driving engine for humanity’s future. This massive shift in focus set the fate for every generation born since.
Reaction to the codification of the ‘collective good’ also defined a meta-goal for those with aspersions to overlord status, and this aspiration has colored the thinking of financial, political, economic and industrial interests forever after. The reaction was to orient businesses towards acquiring the rights and privileges of humans, which would allow non-human legal entities to co-opt the principles of “progress” and “the collective good”, thus allowing a few canny manipulators to eventually literally own the world. Ultimately, what this group of humans is aspiring towards, according to Estulin, is “One World Industries, Ltd.” and a one-world currency.
I’m saying this very forthrightly because the American experiment is now at risk from these same forces that, 600-odd years later, are still gnawing away at “the people’s” foundations today. America was founded on attempt to raise the progress of humans to the point where the individual could truly be Sovereign in her or his own self-created sphere. But such an aspiration would naturally be bound to attract undermining influences to a degree equal with its success. We can see the results of this archetypal lock-up of cross-purposes in present circumstances.
Don’t Blame The Illuminati!
As Estulin makes clear, this is not the result of some shadowy fantasy of a super-group of sorcerers controlling the world like a puppet on strings! No, this is pragmatic matching of interests across an overarching global hive of individuals whose shared vision is to infiltrate business into every aspect of the human experience. There is absolutely no need to posit a magical or esoteric conspiracy, because the whole process of controlling the human herd is happening out in the open, via the monetization of absolutely everything necessary to human life. This strategy has the effect of reducing the full spectrum of human experience down to economic transactions, denominated in the coin of the realm.
The entire philosophy driving this financier’s takeover of the globe is laid out in the song “I owe my soul to the company store”. Remember that?
“You load 16 tons, and whatta ya get?
Another day older and deeper in debt.
St. Peter don’t you call me ‘cause I can’t go,
I owe my soul to the company store.”
The entire human race, every mom and pop everywhere and all the way up the food chain, have collectively accumulated so much debt that there isn’t enough currency circulating in the whole world to satisfy it. Anybody with a calculator and a few minutes to spare can realize this.
There’s no way that the issuers of all that credit/debt didn’t see themselves spooling out our leashes to that imponderable degree – these guys own calculators too, after all! The truth is, all of present global culture has been very deliberately inculcated and propagandized with the idea that by borrowing from the future, one can somehow bring about greater prosperity (in that same mortgaged future). In fact, the only entities enriched by this approach are the lenders who have yoked us in perpetuity with debt repayments! http://www.economist.com/node/16397110
So, yes, this is an intentional situation that we find ourselves in, even if it was not our intentions that provided the guiding hand to steer us to this spot. The good news is, the faster we can awaken to the gravity of the situation and snatch our wills back from the enveloping fog, the faster we can get our lives back on course towards the true human values that await us beyond the reach of the enslaving spider-web we have been unwittingly stuck upon.
Here’s an interview with Alex Jones (radio host at infowars.com) on the subject: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N1dHBFJQdXY&feature=channel
What (Or Who) Have We Been Waiting For?
Now that we understand the problem, at least one angle of approach to it, our response gets clearer. We need to resist, with every creative strategy available to us, the reduction of our human experience to that of cows in a feedlot or sheep in the pasture. The best interest of the ‘little people’ is to wrest our values back from the moneychanger’s hands, redefining the common good in ways that don’t reduce our worth to mere dollars and cents on some industry balance sheet.
We also need to rediscover the substantiality, the tangibility and direct value, the sheer non-replacibility of that interior substance called Free Will. Each and every one of us needs to reach within and put our (metaphorical) hand on our “guts”, our “balls”, our “fundament”, whatever comprises that inner fount of firmness and backbone from which we draw our courage, sass, motivation, righteous indignation and whatever other fiery qualities we need to help us cut through the conflicting messages and just DO WHAT’S RIGHT in front of us!
Origin in the Martinists
Estulin makes a point (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3iUiugzGjlU&NR=1) that I have yet to fully digest, which is that the Martinist Order was founded back in the (1760’s) as a “counterattack on the principles upon which the United States of America was built.” This is confounding to me, and will necessitate some review of my understanding of the Martinist mission. I have not seen any evidence for this conclusion myself, after a thorough review of all of the knowledge papers, histories and rituals I have possession of from the Martinist stream.
But I am acutely aware of the cavalier manner in which rough handling in the grip of posthumous translators and conspiracy theorists has tarnished the reputations of the esoteric masters. I will reserve judgment until I can gain a wider understanding of why Estulin would single out the Martinists and Masons on the one hand, yet on the other hand so staunchly assert that there’s ‘no secret society mumbo-jumbo at work here’ in the outworking of the Bilderberger agenda.
If Estulin is saying that the Masons and Martinists provided a channel by which like-minded people could meet and befriend each other, and perhaps also network and pursue business enterprises with other lodge members, he is more than likely 100% correct. But if he is implying that the Martinists were founded within the Masons expressly to counter the American experiment, well, that’s more of a stretch for me to embrace. I’ll need to read his book and examine his documentation much more carefully.
The Fifth Element
Those who have watched the movie The Fifth Element knows the plot line we are collectively living out. In the movie’s simplistic terms, there is a black hole of pure evil that’s looming at the heart of creation. Every unconscious destructive behavior we indulge in feeds it, so it’s growing like a cancer, getting ready to block out the sun from the sky and consume all life. Tradition tells us that if we can find the Fifth Element, we can remobilize the Divine Matrix and cleanse creation of this life-sucking void. The fifth element (traditionally, the alchemical Quintessence) is Love (a direct reference to Eros Magic) and this needs to be ‘made’ -- it is not automatically present without conscious evocation. The fifth element of Love needs to be wanted, it needs to be desired and longed for, it needs to be attended to and cultivated, built up through repeated contact and increased bonding.
Humanity needs to learn to love what we love, more compellingly than we hate what we hate. That is the key to our situation.
On To The Cards
With all this in mind, then, it is time to shuffle up and lay out these cards for the NewMoon Eclipse of July 2010. And lets remember that Eclipse is a perfect illustration of the concept of syzygy, which is a characteristic of the Moon in our macrocosmic scale. Syzygy is where two things fuse into one, like the Gnostic Archons of old, which existed always in both male and female form simultaneously. It is at NewMoon, and never more so than on an eclipse, that the Two become One, at every level. The exact moment of the syzygy is gone in a flash, but the impression lingers for the entire cycle thereafter.
I am again using Paul Huson’s Tarot, Dame Fortune’s Wheel, because it provides us with a well-realized divinatory pack that is still a blank slate regarding Astrological correspondences. That leaves us free to use the cards in their traditional modality, with the correspondences that come to us via Etteilla and the Masonic/Martinist milieu in which he was nurtured. (And let us remember in the midst of all the conspiracy theories, that we all live under the same sky. There is only one Sun, Moon, Mercury and etcetera, so despite all the possible machinations one or another sect or group might undertake, Divine Will AKA Cosmic Law always prevails.)
NewMoon at 19+ Cancer
I laid out the whole 8-card spread this month, so I have cards for the Sun, Moon and Ascendant positions as well as the other five planets. I’m not going to try and comment on how these very generic indicators might apply for a given individual. (Both the Sun and Moon cards point to 19 degrees of Cancer this month, and the Ascendant is different for every reader.) I’ll just pass them along as ideas you can include in your thinking if you want to. Don’t forget to select cards at home for your own Sun, Moon and Ascendant, to bring the message closer to your personal sphere.
- Sun = Ace Cups
- Moon = Knight of Coins
- Ascendant = The Sun
One thing that leaps out at me from looking at these three cards is that the Solar station shows the image of overflowing love, healing and bonding, while the Lunar station displays a symbol of labor and effort towards the common good. Whatever is going on, and however it might feel, ‘the Lights’ are not turning against us!
The Ascendant station gets most of our attention, because it holds not only a Trump card, but actually THE Trump card among them all, Trump #19 The Sun. From the cosmo-biological view favored by the Renaissance magi, the Sun in the solar system is directly analogous to the heart in the body. Therefore the card says in so many ways “take heart!”, and also “look to the (symbolic) East, from whence a new dawn is emerging”.
Regarding the astrological chart, this eclipse is the second in a pair, the first of which happened last FullMoon. Eclipses happen when the Moon is within 15 degrees of one of its Nodes at the Full or New stages. Right now that’s the Cancer/Capricorn axis, which just happens to be exaggerated by the presence of Pluto in early Capricorn, conjunct the North Node. This situation made last FullMoon a particularly powerful one, and set the stage for a corresponding reaction here with NewMoon at the South Node two weeks later. I’m praying that we will see a healing oriented, maternal-style response in keeping with the Cancer placement as the impact of NewMoon unrolls.
Venus at 1+ Virgo = The Emperor reversed
The sign of Virgo is highly activated this month, with three of our five Planets passing through here. Venus is the fastest mover of the bunch, but all three are destined to converge at the end of July, at the cusp of Libra, just in time for the long-anticipated Cardinal T-square of already-legend. Conjunctions of Mars and Venus have long been associated with Sacred Marriage, and with the added presence of Saturn (a priestly figure), there can be no doubt that a solemn ceremony will be taking place. The fact that it will stretch over most of the month of August as well simply adds more gravitas to the configuration.
All this massing behind the Libra line that dominates the month of July is giving us one last, final chance to get our personal (Virgo financial and lifestyle) affairs in order before that T-square in the cardinal signs is triggered. Our ideals (Venus), our demands (Mars), and our commitments (Saturn) will all have to be in harmony if we are to retain coherence during that testing time. If nothing else, we can see it as a renewal of the karmic contract we make with destiny, to try and harmonize self-will and collective compassion within ourselves, as well as between our kind and every “other” we might encounter.
But here’s a conundrum! Not only is the planet Venus given a reversed card at her entrance to Virgo, but the card in question is also the symbol of patriarchy in its most vivid form – The Emperor. Also, in this NewMoon chart, Venus is poignantly poised at the top of a 3/4/5 triangle with Pluto and Uranus at the other two corners, and she’s simultaneously entertaining a tense opposition to Neptune. The three outer planets are, incidentally, all currently retrograde. This means that Venus is sitting at the focus point of a dark wave of disturbed, incoherent, uneasy and unresolved psychic energy.
Venus in Virgo leads to the archetypal figure of the Virago, the passionate virgin whose intensity attaches itself to lofty causes and reforming missions, rather than expressing through more private channels like relationship and family. Sometimes she is pitied as the mad Joan of Arc type, or styled as a Dianic figure, armed and dangerous to men and their institutions. At other times the virago is typecast as the dotty spinster, the loner cat woman or mad witch at the edge of town. Mother Theresa has constellated both the high adulation and the fierce criticism earned by an icon of the type. Shorn of negative projections, this aspect of Venus’ energy staffs the volunteer banks at the soup kitchens, the low-cost spay and neuter clinics, the 12-step groups, barefoot doctors troops and battered-family shelters around the world. Without Venus’ legions of dedicated and selfless crusaders, there would scarcely be a social safety net to speak of in any nation.
With this in mind, let’s look again at the Emperor card, which is the living embodiment of Empire. Both he and the Empress have an eagle on their shields, totemic sign of royal birth, self-sovereignty and piercing vision. If this reversed Emperor is the sign of a toppled lineage and disempowered hierarchy, then we could see his appearance in the Venus spot as a positive sign, implying that the priorities and powers of Empire (the Borg, as in The Matrix) will be waning and losing their hold. In the situation of a debilitated Emperor, there is a chance that alternate values, of a type more compatible with Venus’ worldview, can prevail.
What would it take for a force from the sensitive, responsive, empathic and loving side of human experience to acquire enough collective impact to trump the Emperor, upending the Powers That Be? This is the question posed by Venus in confrontative Virago mode, channeling the righteous anger of a besieged creation in the face of heedless exploitation. When the forces traditionally aligned with mercy and compassion begin to expand into avenging angels, I’d say that those who are scripted as villains in the current headline dramas had better watch their backs!
I’m rooting for the virtual global army of unsung heroes to send their star players into the power vacuum left by toppled figureheads. I pray for the day we start admiring other role models beyond military and economic overlords. Huson tells us that the Emperor reversed suggests Authoritarianism, which is certainly evident in the wagon circling and fact-suppression on display during this catastrophe in the Gulf region of the USA. I’m hoping that further developments in this Emperor’s reversal will be full disclosure of the collusion and back scratching that allowed such a thing to happen in the first place, followed by a thorough housecleaning.
If nothing else, this totem appearing at Venus’ entrance to Virgo highlights the need for individuals to “clean up our acts”, for the sake of the greater whole. Virgo represents the metabolic process of digestion, and if we can’t digest what we take in (or if there is no nourishment present to be absorbed), then we can’t fuel the functions that keep us alive and thriving. Those of us in the northern hemisphere have finally arrived at the bountiful time of year, when we begin to reap the fruits of past cultivation. The simple, healthy, low-tech graces of a natural life are not too prosaic to fight for! This complex symbol is a reminder to stand up in defense of our bodies and of the earth, to remain worthy of the gift of this planet and its entire natural splendor. Look for wholesome natural pleasures that you can embrace as positive addictions for yourself and your family; over time these might succeed in crowding out the negative addictions that we are all over-programmed to entertain.
Jupiter at 3+ Aries = 9 swords reversed
Jupiter doesn’t stand alone in this chart, because he is twinned by the outer planet Uranus. We are not explicitly treating the invisibles in these articles, as they weren’t part of the ancient, inherited rulership system the Renaissance magi were working with. But there’s nothing wrong with noting their associations with the planets we are tracking, especially in the case of the traditional 30-degree aspects. By that measure, Jupiter is the best-networked planet of the bunch, because beyond his conjunction with Uranus, Jupiter also enjoys traditional aspects with Mercury, Venus, Saturn and Pluto. This comes in handy to diffuse the opposition between the “irresistible force” (Jupiter/Uranus) and the “immovable object” (Saturn).
This Jupiter/Uranus conjunction is offering such a huge impulse for rebirth, transmutation, discorporation and reincorporation that it seems nearly irresistible. How can the bud refuse to swell open when the sun hits it? How can the chick resist pecking at the shell that surrounds it? Note that the NewMoon has a tridecile with the early Aries planets and a quintile with Saturn in late Virgo. This will add creativity and visionary insight to the opposition and give those polarized energies something to pivot around. If we are karmically lucky, we might get to witness a diplomatic act of great finesse that averts catastrophe by finding the one slender thread of mutual agreement present among the giant tangle of hostilities. (But will our current global leadership seize the day, or instead interfere with the process? In the process of trying to do the former, they often achieve the latter….)
In Huson’s 9 of Swords, we see an aging Bishop, caped in purple with miter and staff, who is clutching a red-bound book. He is being either protected or contained behind a grid of swords that cuts him off from the larger landscape beyond him. The Bishop sits on a red stone bench (he “sits on” his life-force instead of sharing it) in a courtyard paved with black and white tiles reminiscent of a chessboard. The sky is black behind him, and beyond the screen of swords are tall narrow cypress trees shadowing a row of graves, giving the whole scene a somber aspect.
Huson reveals that this person’s defended posture comes from a categorical abstinence from emotional or physical intimacy due to religious or mystical inclinations. He gives the keyword Celibacy, and suggests that such a person possesses the qualities of purity, piety and honesty. These are excellent qualities, well worth cultivating. This card, when upright, represents a person who long ago made the choice to forego a certain aspect of the human experience in order to cultivate other aspects.
There are many arenas of human endeavor wherein this type of self-discipline is called for and represents common sense in action. The situation becomes unhealthy, however, when reversed. Huson offers for a reversed meaning; “Mistrust, doubt, fear, timidity, shame”. Viewed from this angle, the old man’s clutch on the book seems to be motivated by discomfort his existence, perhaps due to a fear that any enjoyment in this life will be counted against him in the next. I would say that in this case, the Bishop’s arrested development means that he has not cultivated the part of himself that would know what to do with a liberated Jovian impulse, should such a thing ever come calling! His every life choice has been constrained within a network of “thou shalt not’s”.
This image puts me in mind that increasing numbers of people are desperately seeking a truly neutral and uninvolved referee, lifeguard or interpreter figure that can help them make sense of current events. There is so much discomfort and fear out there that citizens crave a trusted voice to listen to at this point, a voice of seeming calm and sanity to inject some objectivity into the situation. When the nation seems to be led around by warring talk-show hosts, whose presentations are swiftly devolving into “nyaa, nyaa, gotcha, yo’ momma” diatribes, then it starts to seem problematic to see so many people addicted to their big and little screens to the exclusion of doing their own thinking!
I’m not sure that this card predicts a truly lucid person appearing to meet the obvious need, but the flight into conservatism that comes in times of fear is certainly made plain on the face of the card. We are seeing great masses of people around the world who are turning away from the commonweal and refusing to be part of finding solutions to current, pressing problems, largely because religious or political partisanship is blotting out their common sense. This card is a reminder that in times of great uncertainty, one temptation will be to retreat from engagement while making judgments about strangers based on ancient superstitions and stereotypes that have long outlived their usefulness. How can we come to understand what we are dealing with when we refuse to even allow the initial encounter?
One can feel the palpable bewilderment of increasing numbers of people as they watch their support and control structures melting before their eyes. Should we as individuals use this occasion to shed our fellow feeling and fall back to every-man-for-himself behaviors? Or is this the moment when we finally rise into our better selves and make a world that includes and supports all life as one Edenic family? Each one of us will be tempted and tested in our morality by the impact of this Jupiter/Uranus conjunction in early Aries.
In truth, there’s absolutely nothing wrong with taking refuge in The Holy Word as so many contemporary sources demonstrate their lack of relevance. The wisdom teachings of our ancestors have been tried and trued over many a generation. However, if a return to medieval standards is not what we are seeking, then we’ll have to screw up our courage and invite some unknowns into our lives. From his reversed (protected and denial-based) position, our Bishop might be forced to turn around, throw off his insulating robe and ‘chimney’ hat, break through the screen of swords, and join the rest of the human race in facing the future without a rigid rulebook or a big patriarchal institution to back him up.
Mercury at 4+ Leo = 10 Batons/Wands
Here we see a two-colored snake (green and orange) coiling around the trunk of a tree whose branches spread out in all directions. Suspended in the foreground above the snake are ten interwoven golden wands backed by a sideways-diamond shield of blood red. The ground seems to be frosty or snowy behind the snake, which nevertheless still seems alive.
An immediate first impression leapt out at me, because before I shuffled and laid out these cards, I had been reading in my copy of Kurt Seligmann’s Magic, Supernaturalism and Religion. My focus was the Alchemy chapter, on pp.82-3, where Seligman says,
“Throughout the first centuries of our era, the tree of knowledge of the Genesis [story] remained the symbol of… sinful investigation. With the eating of the forbidden fruit, man had become like God, knowing good and evil. No doubt the alchemists accepted such views, yet they proceeded with their investigations just the same. Isis’s [sic.] boast of how she acquired knowledge sounds like a challenge to the passage of Genesis. Gnostic teachings created this entirely new attitude, for many Gnostic sects were indifferent to the problem of good and evil upon earth. The Ophites in like manner worshipped the serpent of the Bible as a beneficent being, since it had rightly directed man to knowledge, the weapon used by him against his creator Iadalbaoth. The tree of knowledge and the serpent were thus to become the most cherished emblems of alchemy.”
Huson’s notes on this card give us this: “Keyword: Treachery. Meaning: Cheating, ruse hypocrisy, falsity, conspiracy, imposture. Reversed: Redoubt, fortification, retreat.” (From the look of things here, Huson is no sponsor of the alchemical quest!) It might help to remember that every 10 card reminds us to stretch our consciousness to hold the maximum complexity that the related element can express. The 10 of Wands will signify every possible human impulse and all of their attached rationalizations. Huson might be highlighting the tyrannical way that the ego has (or the inspired visionary has, for that matter!) of justifying whatever it wants to do in the moment, no matter what the consequences will be to the self or others later.
The a-moral urge to experiment, to push things beyond our allotted bounds, has been both the curse and the glory of the human race. This is the reason we see Mercury, in all its glorious hermaphroditic ambiguity, at the keystone of our planetary arch and the center of the entire spread. Each one of us is in touch with an inexhaustible source of creativity -- introducing variables that remain forever unquantifiable, and which therefore keep our options open eternally. If we collectively came to believe that our putative leaders were actually part of the problem, and that healthy solutions were available from a direction that our talking heads have demonized and scapegoated in the past, well, there is no telling what would be the result.
Along those lines, we can see that Mercury sits at the tip of a second 3-4-5 triangle with the shared Pluto and Jupiter/Uranus square as its base. As we remember from the Venus section above, that square from Pluto to Jupiter encompasses all three outer planets, all retrograde, within its bounds. This imposes a particularly “occult” flavor upon this side of the chart.
By this I mean there are large number of implicits but a low number of explicits inhabiting the signs representing mass developments (the winter signs). Like icebergs, where the most dangerous parts are invisible below the waterline, these outermost planets can influence our outlooks without us ever noticing that we have entered a danger zone. (This exact situation is why I read the Predictive Linguistics report available over at http://halfpasthuman.com/ !)
Because of their participation in these 3-4-5 triangles, Mercury and Venus have the best current insight into these subliminal influences. Hence it is wise to question our inner functioning on the Mercury and Venus levels, to bring to consciousness whatever these two archetypes are holding for us in the hidden chambers of our private psyches. There is no way I can anticipate all the messages inherent in these two entangled triangles with Mercury and Venus at the tips, but you can at least look at these planets’ positions in your own chart to see where the consequences of these figures might emerge.
Saturn at 29+ Virgo = 4 Coins
Huson shows us a pilgrim on the Compostela road, who is having a classic vision of the Virgin (Virgo) as he wilts in the shimmering heat of summer. She stands before him in her red robe and gold sash, encompassed by a sky-blue cloak with an indigo liner, recalling the heavens’ differing aspects of day and night. Spilling out from an upended cornucopia in her right hand are the riches of kings and emperors – crowns and coins. The left arm holds upright a second cornucopia, which retains the flowers and fruits symbolizing the fertility of the earth. The message here is that gold and crowns are worth nothing when measured against the abundant security and support provided by Nature.
Our Pilgrim agrees, because he maintains his humble posture and devoted gaze even as the coins roll away down the road. He keeps his faith and his focus on his Goddess, from whom comes the ineffable compassion and redemption that he seeks.
Huson’s LWB adds another dimension of meaning to the mix. His keyword for this card is Benefit, and the suggestions he gives for the upright meaning are “Acquisition, [the] Present, generosity, donation”. This sounds to me like he is referring to an economic structure, specifically the tourist-based business model, which makes the pilgrimage process economically possible for the many people who drop everything to walk this path. There is a give and take active here, where the local farmers depend on the pilgrims to supplement their agricultural incomes, and the pilgrims depend on the local folk for food and shelter along the path. It looks like a good back-scratching deal all around.
Thinking about this a little more deeply, the correspondence with the Present opens up another axis of meaning. The Pilgrim has left his worldly identity, his comforts and his privilege, at home. He has laid down his donation and in return possesses a piece of scrip that entitles him to dinner, a bed and breakfast in any participating town along his route. His greatest concern is becoming footsore or sun struck, so he wears sturdy shoes, carries water, leans on his staff, and takes shelter under his broad hat and padded cloak. Thus our Pilgrim’s whole reality is reduced to the meditative act of carrying himself along through each day, spiced with the challenge to arrive at the next town before all the beds are taken. There is no cell phone, no car, no wallet, no calendar and no complications. The Pilgrim has deliberately put himself back in time to the Middle Ages. One is utterly and completely in the eternal “Present” while following this path, which is the root of its charm and healing power.
I just have to wonder whether this Vision of the Virgin isn’t a sign to us all, as we roll into the Cardinal T-square with Saturn/Mars, Pluto and Jupiter/Uranus locked up in squares and oppositions. After all, whom does this pilgrim remind us of, once he has been shorn of the tokens of the Compostela Road? He could be a member of any itinerant movement from any time in history. There are a million different reasons one might be walking such a path. The common denominator would be the need to release one’s persona and all of its gear, to wear the common anonymous garb of the penitent pilgrim. The only other consideration is to point one’s nose and one’s toes towards the holy destination, and start moving.
Mars at 19+ Virgo = Knight of Batons/Wands reversed
In this chart, Mars participates in two closed figures, each one a motley assemblage of mismatched aspects. The first one appears between Mars, Mercury and Neptune, the second one between Mars, NewMoon and Neptune. The common side in this case is the 4/9 (quatra-novile) between Mars and Neptune. This indicates to me that the energy of Mars is somehow controlled, being either damped or encouraged, via unconscious channels within the collective imagination or Dreamtime (Neptune).
Mercury’s influence from Leo seems to be heavy, stressful, and perhaps contentious (semi square and triseptile) when blended with the Virgo Mars/Aquarius Neptune relationship. On the other hand, the NewMoon in Cancer has nothing but harmonious, creative and comfortable (sextile and tri-decile) relations with the very same Mars/Neptune pair.
If I were to derive advice from looking at the difference between the two triangles, I would say that this is a good month to know your value and contribution to the world (NewMoon in Cancer), but it’s not a great month to argue about it with competitive, cynical, negative people (Mercury in Leo). This Mercury may be able to hold his center when grounded in his own 3/4/5 triangle, but when the irritant of Mars’ semi square from Virgo hits that Leo tinderbox, Mercury might not be able to resist exercising his sassy, short-tempered side, to his karmic detriment (septile to Neptune).
Speaking from the Tarot side, this Knight has always had the title of Embarking, with all the energy and optimism that accompanies positive anticipation of the journey ahead. We see a knight on a white horse with headgear reminiscent of a Roman Centurion, moving along a cobbled road under a starry sky. All who look upon him know that this Knight represents the authority of the Holy Roman Emperor. He provides a watchful and protective presence from the Court along the highways that he travels. He also enjoys the privileges and honors that his role bestows as part of the deal.
Huson gives this Knight the keyword Departure, citing also the qualities of “Displacement, separation, absence, to abandon. Changing, flight, translation”. With that as context, his reversed meaning gets more severe – “Disunion, rupture, quarrel, severance.” Any way you look at it, this image carries the connotation of hard traveling, whether this means for the individual, or a whole class of people.
One sees from his equipment that he is a martial artist. His staff of authority is hefty enough to deliver a sturdy whack to whomsoever might deserve correction. But one would also hope that, at least some of the time, this Knight might be respected and welcomed for the civilizing influence he brings to the hinterlands, including news of other peoples and the solutions they might have found for common problems. This knight prefers to live lightly on the planet, possessing all of the skills of a hunter-gatherer while simultaneously having all the refinements of education and spiritual cultivation. His self-sufficiency provides a role model to all.
Those who can avoid having their authority-resistant programming triggered by the deference according to this warrior might be so lucky as to discover his other fine qualities. Like Aragorn in the Trilogy of the Ring, he can be quite an inspiring figure, emblematic of mystery and adventure, evocative of a type of nobility that is not imparted by bloodline alone. But by his name you can know he’s always leaving, so this person’s romantic potential is little to nil. The Knight of Wands is restlessness personified -- nobody can stake a claim on this soldier of fortune.
How does all this relate to Mars’ rapid progress through Virgo, and his incipient conjunction with Saturn and Venus in early Libra? The answer to this question provides a summary of the whole chart:
We are collectively heading towards a circumstance where our government (Saturn), our military (Mars) and our caregiver class (Venus) are mobilized as a team, in response to a shared challenge that includes devastating infrastructure challenges (Pluto), deep levels of confusion and dislocation (Neptune) and radical breakouts of anarchistic upstart-ism (Jupiter/Uranus). It will be a test of our individual self-development (Mercury) to avoid stress-based meltdowns and/or helpless collapse from cognitive dissonance. By hewing to a family-based relational and communitarian approach to common problems (New Moon in Cancer), we will be preserving the essential spirit of the moment and operating in greatest cooperation with unfolding events.
Notice, I don’t expect any particular thing to happen precisely on July 11th, although we see the seeds of some type of mobilization for emergency purposes in this chart. The greatest likelihood will be that the NewMoon marks the first traces of something that will become more tangible after the Libra conjunction of Saturn, Mars and Venus breaks up again. Don’t try to prematurely second-guess events before they are fully formed, but just be on notice that a new agenda has been announced through this eclipse.
Also remember that, because of the importance of Venus and Mercury to the outworking of those three retrograde Invisibles, one should strive for high degrees of self-awareness, especially towards inclinations appearing at the fringes of consciousness. You actually want to increase your sensitivity right now if at all possible, counter-intuitive as this might seem at first thought. This is not a time to encounter life with mind, pores, heart and senses closed! We have to be able to feel ourselves and respond authentically even if we don’t like the feelings, and even if those around us are having trouble awakening from their self-generated trances. Again, there probably isn’t time to spend trying to convince anybody else of anything, but it is essential that you take a good hard look at your circumstances, and then take whatever decisions or actions naturally follow from that.
Whatever happens, let’s try to enjoy the summer now that it has finally arrived!
July 11, 2010
copyright christine payne-towler 2005-2010, all rights reserved
TAROT ARKLETTERS are published by:
Christine Payne-Towler and Noreah Press
Anyone objecting to the use of their image in this free publication can have it removed immediately - Ed.