When effort is needed, effort will appear.
When effortlessness becomes essential, it will assert itself.
You need not push life about. Just flow with it and give yourself completely
to the task of the present moment, which is the dying now to the now.
For living is dying. Without death, life cannot be.
~ Sri Nisargadatta Maharaj
(Important message at the end, if you don’t have time to read it all!)
Every day and throughout life we live in cycles – morning-noon-night; active-passive-active-passive – which are set within ever greater cycles: days turn to weeks turn to months turn to years, and on and on.
Within each cycle there is an energy that supports the perfect response – a sleep cycle requires that we sleep or else we become hyperactive and overstimulated, an active cycle when ignored and unused increases lethargy, and pushing through a resting cycle to work harder leads to stress and exhaustion. This is all quite obvious to most people, even if the obvious is not always respected!
Throughout recorded human history we can also observe cycles shaping behaviours, societies and empires. As a student of history and international relations, I always assumed they were just part of a natural flow in the push-pull of economic and political development over time. When I began to study astrology, it became apparent that the cycles we find in our human experience actually corresponded to something greater, and it is precisely these alignments of cycles to planetary movements that allow astrologers to envisage how future cycles will be of influence.
For those of you who have followed me for a while, you will know quite well about the revolutionary cycle we have been in since late 2010, and especially since March 2011. This entire decade has been shaped by a plexus of rebellious conflicts, resistence to change, intensifying ideologies and outright vitriol, and it’s far from over yet.
When society and the environment reaches the point of such flagrant imbalance, as it has increasingly over the past few decades, a massive correction is necessary. This is in the nature of life itself, where balance is always being sought. This year will bring considerable impetus for change and we need to be clear who and what we want in the place of what is changing in our world and in our individual experience. This is a good time to reflect on your highest hopes and learn to roll with the non-stop changes, ideally waiting until mid-September before taking firm action on big new plans.
This is a good time to reflect on your highest hopes and learn to roll with the non-stop changes, ideally waiting until mid-September before taking firm action on big new plans. Clear out as much as you can to make way for what’s coming in the weeks and months ahead. You know already what needs shedding, so don’t wish for it to go away on it’s own unless you want to prolong (or worsen) the suffering!
We’re now in the middle of a period of personal and social transformation that has been/is/will be happening through losses and gains, hellos and goodbyes, new insights and old dreams fading away. Last Monday’s lunar eclipse, and the weeks surrounding it, gave us an opportunity to say goodbye to someone, something, or some idea that has come to a natural conclusion. The solar eclipse on August 21st will begin a phase of welcoming in something new, ranging from a new way of seeing yourself to a whole new relationship or job status, depending on individual circumstances.
Because we are talking about cycles, we are wise to learn from what came up in the past. The current cycle of eclipses relates to those of August 1999, which affected us through that autumn and into winter 2001. What stands out for me is that I began teaching yoga classes “professionally” in September 1999, following a hunch that it was the right thing for me to be doing as a young mother, and it just sort of grew from there. We all find ourselves now at the end of that cycle 18 years later, where we come full circle back to the point of the 1999 eclipse.
You can also trace this month’s eclipse cycle back to the assassination attempt on US President Ronald Reagan in 1981, the actual assassination of US President John Kennedy in 1963, and the eclipses of July 1944 which highlighted a real turning point in the Second World War. Watch out for events affecting the USA, which is experiencing the full effect of the solar eclipse’s path from shore to shore, as well as the current US President, who’s ascendant (the most personal point of a birth chart) is directly on the point of the eclipse, much as JFK and Reagan before him. It’s also the same point as during the French Revolution, but that’s for another time!
But never mind all of that for now. What’s ending for you?
In my case, it feels as though my yoga teaching career – in its current form, at least – has come to a natural ending, leaving space for me to develop the therapeutic work (in yoga and now also hypnosis), astrological counselling and mindfulness courses that I really love.
Since last winter, I have been planning to leave the yoga centre to one of our teachers (more on that in September’s blog!), in order to free up more of my time for the rest. But in the past couple of weeks it has become clear that, as well as the organisation of the centre itself, the group classes are no longer the right thing for me at the moment, so I decided to stop teaching them as of this summer.
Elisabeth Rivasseau will take over the Tuesday and Thursday classes as of the beginning of September, and once there is a suitable replacement for the Friday morning class I will let you know. Please check the schedule for the details of all the classes still available at Inspiration Yoga Centre starting again in September.
In the meantime, I plan to make the best of the unsettled current energy (it’s very good for taking it easy until around September 5th!) on a rejuvenating Ayurvedic retreat in India, and visiting friends in Mumbai along with my daughter who will head off to University in early October.
Old cycles overlapping with new, beginnings merging with endings in a beautiful and timeless pattern.
No coming, no going, No after, no before.
I hold you close. I release you to be free.
I am in you and you are in me.
~Thich Nhat Hanh
With much love and light as always,