I recently attended online a yoga therapy workshop on grieving and dying. It was extremely impactful and led me to realise the importance of grieving in many stages over the course of a lifetime. We must find the time to grieve not only the obvious losses of human and animal loved ones, but also our dreams and hopes for life itself.
As we are in a period of substantial social change and insecurity around big issues such as food and financial systems, governance, and individual and human rights, we can reflect on how a loss of faith in “the system”, in leadership, and perhaps in our own ability to navigate through life leads to some degree of grieving and regret.
Indeed, our health and our very existence is threatened due to our inaction over many decades to sustain and care for our only home. The environmental crisis we find ourselves in is a likely source of grief and anxiety, especially for young people, even if we’re not consciously aware of it. It can be helpful to explore to what degree this might be bothering us more than we realise by journaling or talking about it.
Of course, we are also in a time of a pandemic, adding to so much of the strife – even if it is a logical outcome of the situation we knowingly created for ourselves. The very real loss of life, loss of freedoms, and losses of jobs, incomes, and opportunities are worthy of deep healing through conscious grieving.
The loss of a loved one, or even of an imagined future, requires a profound adjustment to our worldview, and perhaps a re-examination of what we fundamentally believe to be true about life.
This is the ultimate spiritual practice we must explore at every opportunity in preparation for our own final breath. I am giving a lot of thought to this on a personal level, as well as contemplating how I could usefully share this with you in some form in the months ahead.
We are currently in a moment of our collective experience that lends itself very well to such profound contemplation, and there is no better time than now to clarify what we believe so we can go forward through all of the urgently needed adjustments on the horizon.
Today (exact at 17:16 CET) we are experiencing a significant total solar eclipse in the sign of Sagittarius, which will play a major part in the big change of energy that we’ll be experiencing over the next few weeks and, in the long run, over the coming decade.
Uniquely this year, the shift from December to January really does allow us to make serious resolutions and set goals with the support of the changing energy of these times.
Usually this is not a good time of year to set goals because the energy is drawing us inward and therefore not behind such dramatic shifts, which is why New Year’s resolutions rarely work. But here and now we have a real sense that an old year, and indeed an old way of living, is coming to an end.
Our practice now is to choose carefully how we go forward in the next couple of weeks and months because these choices are setting up a long-term pattern for continued evolution in a very new direction. We should be sure that what we choose now is what we want for our future.
On Thursday, December 17th, Saturn enters Tropical Aquarius, where it will stay until March 7th 2023. The last time it was in this sign was from February 1991 to December 1993. If you were out of diapers by that time, you might recall what was happening in your life and notice that this area of life is once again needing your attention. If you were still in diapers at that time, you might be in your Saturn return which is a life-changing period of long-term (re-)orientation. All of us will be grateful for the creation of the open-source, collaborative World Wide Web, which changed the world forever when Saturn moved into Aquarius back then.
Then, on December 19th, Jupiter moves into the same sign, where it was transiting last from January 2009 to January 2010. Similar life themes from that time will be layering over this current period, with a flavour of expansion, optimism, or possibly excess in the area of your chart where Aquarius is found. Collectively, Jupiter in 2009 brought a collective urge to heal from the greed and disruption wrought by the global housing and banking collapse of 2008: too little to bring lasting benefit to the masses, but just enough to allow the banks and business interests to continue to indulge. Sound familiar?
Because of this nearly simultaneous movement of Saturn and Jupiter into Aquarius, exactly one week after today’s eclipse (December 21st) is what astrologers call the Great Conjunction between Saturn and Jupiter, whose once every 20-year meeting shifts our individual life orientation as well as our collective experience for the following two decades.
I have spoken at length about this in full moon meditation sessions, so I won’t go into much detail here except to say that the obvious, accelerating collapse of major old structures of power and finance is going to require intensive adaptation and innovation throughout 2021 and beyond, as the restructuring is still very much in process and won’t settle for a few years to come. (And, no, this is not “the Christmas Star”, whatever that is!)
(Several of you have asked whether I will be doing a special meditation to mark this rare period, and my answer to everyone has been the same: turn within, simplify, and be as calm and introspective as your situation permits. This is a time where our individual understanding of our own role and life path is vital to making good choices. The belief/worry that we need to be told what to do or to succumb to groupthink is an unhelpful manifestation of Saturn in Aquarius which represents societal controls and restrictions on freedoms of speech, movement, assembly, and information.)
There is a lot of talk about the “Age of Aquarius” at this time, but most of it is New Age wishful thinking. There is very little agreement among astrologers about the beginning of the Age of Aquarius, which is mostly a concept that took shape in the 1960s, very much influenced by the popular Broadway musical, ‘Hair’. This is a testimony to how highly influenceable we are as a species and why marketing and propaganda are so successful: if a message is repeated often and enthusiastically enough it becomes “truth”, and most people don’t bother to understand the origin.
Astronomical ages are determined by a concept called the precession of the equinoxes, which has the earth’s ecliptical path shifting from one constellation to another in a time span of 2150 to 2500 years. Unlike modern astrologers, Sidereal (Indian) astrologers have nothing to say about this phenomenon, because it simply isn’t relevant. These ages are so vast as to have no impact on our daily lives and should not be taken seriously, especially because the notion offers a naïve understanding of what we are currently experiencing and can lead to wishful thinking that often prevents useful action in areas that have reached a crisis point, such as social inequality and environmental health.
Saturn in Aquarius is not so much about hippie communes as it is about the rules and structures needed to create such a thing in the first place, which are often incompatible with and therefore frustrating to a free-wheeling, hippie mentality.
Which brings me to another pet peeve: the idea of a global awakening (thanks to the Age of Aquarius, of course). Not only is it impossible for all people to experience a consciousness awakening simultaneously, the very idea is filtered by those wishing for it through the comforting lens that those who awaken will end up thinking exactly as they do. And how likely is that? How likely are we to suddenly drop our current collective trajectory to hold hands across the world en masse, sway in tune to the same music and gaze lovingly at each other ever after?
Eclipses can be highly agitating, personally and socially. They tend to accelerate change, so our choices and directions in life can shift quickly and in surprising ways. We might experience an abrupt change of goals, desires, or even fundamental beliefs around the time of this eclipse, directing us towards a new path that can have noticeable consequences for how we relate to the world around us. Without a doubt these changes will affect travel and international relations in significant ways, as happened the last time we had Sagittarius-themed eclipses starting in the period after the terrorist attacks of September 11th 2001, indeed exactly 19 years ago today (14 December 2001)!
Where can we cultivate a greater perspective on life? Where can we see ourselves in a different relationship to society, abundance, and beliefs, including religious beliefs? Where can we allow our grief to flow to unblock creativity through that emotional release?
Our thoughts and attitudes block or allow the flow of energy through us and towards life. Reflecting on what we want from life in the long run – and what we believe about life right now – is a valuable way to spend the next couple of weeks. You don’t have to figure out the entire game plan, but you will be well served by giving a lot of thought to how you want to experience life in the next 10 to 20 years, and how you might contribute to improving our global situation as well as life in your own little corner of the world.
Wishing you a wonderful holiday season whatever your beliefs, with much love and light,
If you want a consultation with me, please note that I will be turning inward from 24 December to 6 January. My availability can be found here. I look forward to seeing you soon!
If you would like to buy a Gift Certificate to offer a loved one one of my life-changing consultations, you can do so here.