* The Sun in Scorpio represents the most solid and stable time of solar descent in the zodiacal year.
* Each day takes us deeper and deeper into darkness.
* Darkness is materiality, the unconscious, and also the soul, which can only be found when we see beyond material, sunshine appearances and into the depths, into the invisible.
* Scorpio is the feminine home of Mars.
* Mars and Scorpio are likened to each other. Mars and Scorpio together is the drive toward the darkest, the drive toward oblivion.
* Mars and Scorpio is the critical awareness of darkness, the guardian that protects and guards against the darkness that lurks.
* Mars and Scorpio is the vision of what is real, what lies behind the surface, the difference between an appearance and a truth, the different between a facade, charade or act and sincerity or authenticity. Mars and Scorpio together drive out what is false or what threatens to undermine.
* Mars and Scorpio obsesses, confronts, waits, and explodes.
* Mars and Scorpio possesses, catalyzes, and destroys.
* Mars and Scorpio penetrates into the darkness, diving deep, hiding, secretive, fierce, protective, and possibly denying or holding to the death.
* Mars and Scorpio are the life force of the soul, the deep well of water, and the quenching of immaterial thirst. Mars and Scorpio are the bliss of pain and the pain of bliss. The one who sees both in everything, the erotic overlord, invisible but sensed everywhere.
* Now, imagine, Mars in the sign of Libra, hosting the Sun while traveling in the airy and lofty masculine abode of Venus. A diplomat with a dark agenda. A smooth talker with hidden disease. A sophisticated warrior, driving out falseness one intelligent exchange after another.
* Now, imagine, an old Jupiter in Scorpio, being swallowed by the Sun. The picture of pride and denial, finally dying. The image of a puffed up persona, finally facing the truth. The downfall and darkness of the one in power. Or, the moment of inner vision, of seeing the soul, of the last breath and rush of colors, of the eternal visible through last closed eyes.
* When we know a sign and its ruling planet and its gender (which we can really think of as yin or yang) deeply, then we can read the relationship between the Sun in a sign and its host in another sign. So frequently we jump to the straight read of a planet in a sign without taking the time to articulate what it might mean for a planet to be traveling in one sign while it’s host is in another.
Think for example of this analogy. You’re in a dark and mysterious castle. You’re wandering around looking at all the dark relics and puzzling onyx statues. This is Scorpio, the feminine home of Mars, goddess of war. Her home is draped in the colors of mid Autumn and the pinnacle of her castle is the icy image of the winter solstice.
Now, imagine that anything you want to do in the dark castle has to be executed by Mars while Mars is in the airy Venusian sky castle, which is filled with diplomats, laughter, fine crystal, and carefully coordinated colors. It might seem bizarre, but this is close to how we have to read the presence of the Sun in Scorpio right now. The Sun in Scorpio is being toned by the fact that it’s host is in its exile in Libra.
* Jupiter in Scorpio is hosted by Mars in Venus. The Sun in Scorpio is hosted by Mars in Venus. The Sun is swallowing old Jupiter in the autumn castle of Scorpio, while it’s host is in Libra.
Play with those images and see what you find. My apologies that today’s horoscope is so late. I’m battling a cold again!
Prayer: Teach us to see the temples of the stars. Teach us to feel free, here in eternity.
* More than perhaps any other sign, people love to try and “rebirth” Scorpio into something “nice.” Whenever a conversation comes up about Scorpio someone is always bound to say that Scorpio is really about rebirth. First, let’s be clear that traditional astrologers didn’t discuss the signs of the zodiac in the same way that we do and so we’re already having a conversation that reflects the establishment of a new way of thinking about signs in general. Next, let’s also be clear that the zodiac is the division of the ecliptic (the Sun’s annual path as seen from earth) into twelve equal parts. By its very nature, any and every sign participates in the symbolism of circularity and hence there is not one sign that can be studied without a holistic understanding of the waxing and waning of the year and its symbolic relationship to the perpetual turning of the wheel of fortune. With this in mind, let’s make the simple point that trying to make every conversation about death into something light, or trying to take the word “death” and turn it into “rebirth,” actually demonstrates just the kind of paranoid attachment to lightness that Scorpio is best at demolishing.
* Attachment to either the light or the dark side of the wheel, either the highs or the lows, can be problematic. Scorpio is that side of the wheel that recognizes the delusions of people caught and trapped in beams of light.
* Scorpio itself may become caught and trapped in the dark.
* Scorpio does not best represent a time of year that is associated with rebirth. It best represents a time of year associated with the depth and power of decline and the loss of light. We only protest this if we don’t understand the relative value of all facets of the circle from the get go.
* The soul is itself the circle and the forever motion of the circle in time. Decline and loss are vital to the deepening of the soul because it is in these times that we are most inclined to remember that we’ve been here before and will be here again. Decline into the dark is also a return, in other words. On the light/high side of the circle, we tend to think we will finally arrive somewhere or that we are conquering heroes who will never die. It’s in the depths and loss of light that the soul’s perpetual life emerges as it returns home to the memory of itself. So this time of year isn’t a rebirthing as much as it is a remembering…a memorial service for the word “forever,” which grants an unspeakable security to the soul, beyond beginnings or endings, and that security is best symbolized by images like the deep Scorpionic chasm, the endless dark night, or the black bottom of the ocean.
* Deep and dark times and places aren’t about Phoenixes rising from the proverbial ashes. Rather, they are places among endless places, filled with strange ancestors…soul memories….alien fish with neon lights hanging from enticing hooks, or the faces of large animals peering at us from the jungles of heaven.
Prayer: Teach us the power of death and its relevance to the life of the soul.
A few quick things to remember about Scorpio:
* When the Sun moves into the sign of deep Autumn it brings intense clarity to things like death, loss, and depth…these normally “dark” subjects become ironically clear and transparent.
* The way each person handles the reality of death, loss, and depth reflects the spectrum of common Scorpio characteristics. For example, some people try to fight and defend against these things, to the point of becoming defensive, possessive, and paranoid, which are some of the less attractive words we often use to describe Scorpio. On the other hand, some people revel in the darkness, death, and depth, to the point of becoming secretive, manipulative, and obsessive. There is also a stubborn erotica to Scorpio, an insistence on drawing things out. All of these qualities are in some way related to how we cope with or express our relationship with death, depth, and darkness.
* Scorpio is often….secretive but not a liar, hidden but not betraying, watching but not attacking, misunderstood but not without hurt feelings.
* Scorpio is frequently the honesty that stings but transforms, kills but revives, and reveals as it conceals.
Prayer: We welcome the Sun into the Scorpion. Illuminate the depths and teach us the erotic and revitalizing power of honesty.
CS Lewis once wrote, “It is the chief duty of the interpreter to begin analyses and leave them unfinished.”
Heraclitus wrote, “Nature loves to hide.”
Lao Tzu wrote, “The way that can be named is not the way.”
And James Hillman wrote, “The soul is undiscovered, though explored forever, to a depth beyond report.”
In the Voyage of the Dawn Treader, the children meet a talking Star. Skeptical Eustace says, ““In our world a star is a huge ball of flaming gas.” The star replies, “Even in your world, my son, that is not what a star is, but only what it is made of.”
We sometimes think of this mystery as having to do with the limits of the mind. But doesn’t that put mystery in the service of the mind, as though we each have an easily accessible, bottom line, “Well, some things just can’t be spoken. It’s all so mysterious anyway!”
I’m not so sure this is the best way to use the word…doesn’t it leave out the fact that mystery isn’t just a concept we use to communicate our lack of intellectual understanding? Isn’t mystery a robed woman, walking with a starry headdress, Moon slippers and Solar crown? Isn’t mystery the way something feels? Isn’t mystery the way we know something we don’t know? The tangible feeling that accompanies unspeakable holiness?
Isn’t mystery something whose contours say things to us..even if they’re hushed, or unrepeatable…mystery is not an empty place holder, a dead end, or a white surrender flag. I’ll have none of that!
I see mystery like the body language of God. A subtle language that speaks more and more the more we choose to see beyond the visible, hear beyond the audible, and touch with hands of heart.
Prayer: Venus, Moon, Neptune…may the mystery make us feel all right.
Someone recently mentioned that astrologers were typically supported by patrons, and then yesterday I signed up to be a patron for a colleague’s podcast at $1 per episode. This helped me to conceptualize or add a different understanding to the nature of my fund raising efforts. Astrologers like myself, who write daily horoscopes, need patrons. Just like the various national public radio programs need patrons, and just like people who attend churches support the church and the minister through contributions. It’s fascinating to think that what I’m doing when I fund raise is actually very old. Just because it’s called “crowd funding” and it involves online campaigning doesn’t mean it’s not a pretty old thing that astrologers have always done. We need patrons! So on that note, please contribute to my kickstarter if you haven’t already, and support the good work of my daily horoscopes and my donation-based astrology classrooms and public speaker series for 2016. For $99 you can purchase two recorded birth chart readings for holiday gifts! There are plenty of other rewards too, so check them out! https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1163009170/nightlight-daily-horoscopes-2016
Meanwhile, we’re moving into the dark moon time and with the Moon/Venus/Neptune trine in Scorpio happening in the background of a Mars/Uranus opposition, we should watch very carefully for misinformation, political misdirection, aces hidden up the sleeve, and the manipulation of information or ideas used to coerce, convince, or dominate. Going hand in hand with these themes we should also stay alert to the power of environmental factors to subtly control our minds or perceptions.
We don’t often think about what kinds of influences we’re allowing in and what we’re keeping out. In a sense we’ll entertain anything and everything, especially online, because we have the idea in our heads that we’re consumers and that we can consider before purchasing. Every piece of information, every viral video, every new TV show, and every world media spectacle becomes an opportunity for us to “watch and consider, without necessarily buying into.” In this regard the internet and the consumerist mindset create a weird kind of hyper sarcastic, consider all things for fun, voyeurism. However, the downside of this “consider everything” mindset is that we forget that to consider comes from the Latin for “to study the stars,” or “to reflect upon the stars as in divination.”
There is a spiritual power in the way we consider, and there are spiritual powers within what we’re considering. Just because we don’t take something all the way, just because we don’t buy in, or we don’t “like it,” doesn’t mean we haven’t subtly allowed for the influence of one order of spiritual power or another to find a home in our mind and body.
Granted, if we take this too far we become paranoid. But on the other hand, if we don’t take it seriously enough we may be taken advantage of by the power of ideas, images, thoughts, and agendas that are not necessarily benevolent.
Case in point…one of the most effective tools of terrorism in the internet era is to convert people from afar, by the power of ideas, images, and rhetoric. Because we will “look at anything,” we also may give an opportunity for extremist doctrines to infect our thinking. Again, granted it’s not likely for this to occur for most of us at such an extreme level, but can we deny the effects of violence in the media, images of the body or wealth or happiness in commercials, etc?
For similar reasons I think people tend to shut off their cell phones, drop out of social media for a while, and try to let the mind empty itself of all the noise and unwanted images and information.
Here is a short list of other themes to watch for:
* Gossip, deception, lies, secrecy, betrayal
* Lust, privacy, eroticism
* Influence, persuasion, hypnotism, delusion
* Cloaking, hiding, lying
* Double agents, playing both sides
When we set these themes in the middle of the Mars/Uranus opposition, which very much has the feeling of fast, sudden, disruptive, powerful outbursts, breakthroughs, accidents, discoveries, and rebellions, we have an interesting set of themes to work with. Try combining them, or watch for their combination in the week ahead!
Prayer: Arm us with sincerity and simplicity, and keep us away from the spectacles that would suck us in and drain us of our peace
The Moon has just entered Sagittarius and is applying to Venus, Saturn, and Neptune through this evening.
With Mercury diving more deeply into the Sun in Scorpio, let’s continue examining the symbolism of Mercury combust the Sun.
In the past week I’ve been revisiting the Psalms, or what was called the “Tehillim” in Hebrew. The word means something like “songs of praise” or “praising,” and the book of Psalms is part of both the Hebrew Bible and also the Christian “Old” testament. The study was prompted by the singing of traditional hymns at the Quaker meetings we’ve been attending. Some of the lyrics were so beautiful, but I also recognized them from the Psalms, and it made me want to reconnect to the book.
Somewhere in the process, I recalled something I used to do when I was a kid…maybe the roots of my studies in divination. I used to close my eyes, say a prayer to God to tell me something important about whatever I was going through, and then I would randomly flip open some part of the bible and place my finger somewhere on the page. Without fail something would speak to me. Not always straight forwardly, but always at the very least poetically or symbolically. While thinking about this yesterday I realized it wasn’t so different from my love of the Psalms. The thing about the Psalms is that they were often sung and their imagery is the stuff of poetry and art. This has always been the language of my heart.
So, in that spirit, I decided to randomly flip open a page and see what it spoke about the Mercury/Sun combustion in Scorpio. Here is the verse I landed on…
“Therefore, my dear friends….Do everything without complaining or arguing, so that you may become blameless and pure…then you will shine like stars in the sky.”
The line that really got me was, “Do everything without complaining or arguing, so that you become blameless and pure…then you will shine like stars in the sky.”
How easy is it for us to feel justified in our complaints, especially the most legitimate complaints? How hard is it to surrender to our disappointment with ourselves or others and simply feel what we’re feeling without twisting things to our liking or acting out in deceptive and manipulative ways?
They say Scorpio can be a vindictive sign, but the images that come to mind with the word vindictive usually aren’t small enough. Like those moments where we feel wronged, upset, disappointed, frustrated, or threatened, and so from that basis, in order to “right the wrong we perceive” we act out. We twist, manipulate, and act out from the place of our bad feelings. We might even go so far as to glorify the bad feelings and twist them into images of beauty and then shove them in other people’s faces.
Yesterday under the New Moon I got exactly what I wrote about yesterday…some difficult news and a startling but clarifying revelation that opened a new cycle. Since then I have been struggling with the desire to complain, argue, and act out against what came forward. I then noticed my mind trying to deceive me by suggesting that the archetypes of hatred, revenge, contempt, aggression, frustration, and judgement are “just as valid” as love and peace. In fact, maybe they are more “real” and “honest” and “gritty” than words like “acceptance” and “love” and “patience” and “peace.” Maybe they are more poetic, more truly and sincerely at peace with the way things are…etc.
But then I caught myself and put my foot down. “No,” I said. “That doesn’t work for me.” And then I flipped open the verse about not complaining or arguing and found this deeper insight about the Mercury/Sun combustion in Scorpio.
When we don’t like the way something is…something about ourselves or others or life, we don’t invalidate the reality of that complaint by choosing not to complain or act out about it. In fact, one of the deepest forms of validation that exists comes when we allow the frustration to fill us and we enter into it with the reverence reserved for sanctuaries. The silence or the acceptance isn’t about condoning but rather about communing sincerely. Then when we emerge from that holy darkness we have gone beyond our sacred rage or some naive form of holy acceptance…such dichotomies are washed away by a different kind of acceptance. The same acceptance that the writer compares to the luminosity of stars…great churning balls of fire.
The Mercury/Sun combination in Scorpio may signify something trying to convince us that our complaint or offense is sacred…or in turn it may try to convince us that our “being above something” is sacred…but we should consider that both approaches to our pain are secretly the spirit of grumbling and complaining trying to deceive us into a false response.
Prayer: We don’t worship our complaints, and we don’t worship our acceptance…remind us what the words really mean, “all things without complaining or arguing.”
Let’s discuss the symbolism of the Sun’s entrance into Scorpio. Scorpio is one of the most seductive, powerful, and subversive signs of the zodiac. It’s hard to talk about Scorpio without suspicion. It’s hard to talk about Scorpio without power in your voice, and it’s hard to talk about Scorpio without making somebody, somewhere, uncomfortable. On the simplest level, the Scorpion is a creature associated with fierce protectiveness, secrets and hidden motives, invisibility and poison, stingers, laser like acuteness, and the homeopathic cure or the venom become medicine. Though there are a variety of interesting associations with other animals this sign has, like the Eagle or the Phoenix, it’s important that we put our foot down about a few things. First, Scorpio’s significations are almost always better associated with death, depth, mystery, defensiveness, eruption, power, secretiveness, poison, and hidden cures, than it is with the word “rebirth” or the soaring spiritual symbols of birds.
People get obsessed in an ironically Scorpionic way with the word rebirth, and often what it points to isn’t Scorpio’s tendency to “rebirth” but rather people’s love of emotional redemption. Rebirth is a powerful word that’s become the red-headed step child of new age astrological dramatists constantly seeking the next emotional salvation. Let’s try to rarely use the word “rebirth” when talking about this sign, and let’s remember that many Scorpios are entirely suspicious of anything that would seek to destabilize, dramatize, or catalyze things unnecessarily. Being a fixed water sign, in fact, the Scorpion is prone toward a very deep level of stoic solidity, especially when it comes to the darker, deeper, and colder realities of biological life. Rather than wanting to catalyze some kind of holy roller altar call or born again spiritual experience, Scorpio is more like the perfectly clean and clear image of the green leaves of plants as seen through the first killing layer of frost in October or November. There is an emotional lucidity that comes by our intimacy with death…like the emptiness of the Buddha sitting under the Moon at nighttime, contemplating impermanence with perfect, frosty detachment. With this heightened instinctual awareness of death in nature there is also tremendous power, like the life force drawing back below the ground, into the seeds or roots. The feeling of potential nuclear detonation or “rebirth” we sense with Scorpio is therefore about mistaking Aries and the eventual return of spring with the middle of Autumn. The fact that both signs are Mars ruled does in fact connect the idea of coagulated inner power with an eventual explosion or outward thrust of the same energy, but to assign too much of this outward explosiveness to Scorpio is to try to make death into life, or Autumn into Spring prematurely. Can’t we find just a little more patience with how we think about these things? What would the Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe have been without the spell of winter, no Christmas, and the white witch?
Meanwhile, the wiles of Scorpio aren’t to be underestimated. We hate talking about these things because we’re always trying to make every sign as rosy and virtuous as possible…this tendency in fact betrays an important facet of earthly reality…namely the cold, deep, uncomfortable, scary, truths we live in the presence of each and every day. Scorpio isn’t generally a fan of this rosy tendency, and more than most signs the Scorpion can smell out the presence of betrayal, deception, lies, and happy horse shit. Consequently, Scorpio is a sign that is often related with lies, dishonesty, secrets, viciousness, deceit, cunning, hidden plots or motives, vindictiveness and revenge, violence, evil or darkness, envy, greed, malicious intent, possessiveness and power lust. As much as we want to rescue every sign by saying, “it has both a light and a dark side,” the Scorpion is justifiably suspicious of this happy making or all balancing perspective. Why are we so obsessed with balance? What’s below that equilibrium fixated smile? Sniff…sniff….smells like paranoia. Smells like someone who only likes the nice things, and balance is simply the new word for “nice.” But you can’t hide from me…because I’m death…
I am the cold rigor mortis that finally stops all attempts to avoid, delay, change, uplift, or encourage above and beyond…and if you don’t stop for me, ritually, if you don’t grieve, mourn, fear, suspect, and grow cold and still…when I come it will feel all the more like a predator stalking you…
Prayer: no more tom foolery…help us to stop and smell the death