Scorpio Full Moon

Friday the 22nd brings us April’s Full Moon at 3° Scorpio. The Sabian Symbol ~ a house raising ~ evokes community, cooperation, support, helpfulness, teamwork. The shared experience that, despite our active social media life, is increasingly lacking in modern times. Can we allow the quiet voice of our unconscious to be heard over the relentless tweets, status updates, podcasts and soundclouds? Its gentle reminder that despite feelings of isolation and loneliness, we are all connected. We are reliant upon one another in so many ways that we often take for granted. Life as we know it, globalisation~consumption~complication in excess can dull our sensitivity to one another and to the majesty of life itself, but observing the rhythms of the natural world (such as the Lunar cycle) allows us moments in time to recognise and appreciate our miraculous existence.

Scorpio is co-ruled by Pluto and Mars, both planets having turned retrograde just this week. This Scorpio Full Moon guides us towards the intended focus of the retrograde phases of the two power planets. Pluto harbours our soul’s deepest needs, and Mars drives us in pursuit of them.

Scorpio also corresponds archetypally to the eighth house of the natural zodiac. The eighth house traditionally represents taboo matters of instinct and security: sex, death and other people’s money. Contemporary astrology broadens its meaning to envelope also our darkness, secrets, power, and complexity. It follows on from the themes of the seventh house (relationships) and is thus symbolic of a deepening of partnership ~ intimacy ~ the consummation of a marriage ~ exposure of shadows ~ the blending of assets ~ beyond what is rightly shared by dear friends and valued business associates.

This Full Moon encourages us to consider our deepest relationships, and how we contribute to the health and wellbeing of the sacred unions we have chosen. The intention behind our alliance (whether its been vowed aloud before a delighted tearful audience or whispered privately in the dark after lights out) calls for respect, humility, sincerity, consideration, openness and love. Do we recognise the profound truth of it having been a choice? And now that we have made our choice can we take responsibility for its success? Now that we’ve made our marital bed, can we lay in it?

As explained by Robert A. Johnson in the illuminating work The Psychology of Romantic Love, can we sacrifice romance and thus make sacred life’s ordinariness?

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There is much joy

to be found in the

minutiae of life

 

Equally, the secrets of our inner Scorpio stir now, urging us to go deeper… explore our personal power. Scorpio’s counter point is Taurus and the two archetypes aim to balance one another: the Bull’s peaceful simplicity with the Scorpion’s chthonic complexity. If we’ve been hiding, or indeed hiding from, parts of ourselves, the retrograde phase supports our work in re-discovering more of who we are. Feeling our strength. Knowing our truth. Living authentically.

With the Sun now in Taurus opposing the Full Moon this lunation may remind us of our inherent human form limitation ~ mortality. To quote the Grim Reaper as depicted by Saturn Award winner William Sadler in the underrated 1991 teen flick Bill & Ted’s Bogus Journey “you may be a king or a little street sweeper but sooner or later you’ll dance with the reaper”.

Finally, as this Full Moon glow bathes our planetary home this Earth Day we might also allow it to remind us of our connection to this blessed ball of rock on which we ride through space~time. Our human existence relies on the survival of Gaia. We are all inter-connected to each other, to our magical Earthly home and to the source of all that is. Simultaneously tiny insignificant profoundly foolish and ridiculous, yet instrumental and powerful unique expressions of God. Animal instincts combined with gifts of consciousness and free will.

Grasp the reality.

Revere the mystery.

Rejoice in the paradox.

Transformation of what lies beneath

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The unconscious forces within us are powerful. Carl Jung compared our psyches with islands of consciousness in an ocean of unconsciousness. Despite our lack of awareness the parts of our psyche that remain largely hidden yield much control over each of us: our perceptions, behaviours and our manifest realities.

Jung developed the theory of the complex ~ a pattern of memories, beliefs and emotions tied to a common theme ~ we are often unaware of our own personal complexes but they can be obvious to those who know us. For example, the inferiority complex arises commonly in childhood as we become aware of the reality that we are dependent upon others (usually our parents) for life. This can become a negative influence in our psyche if we are discouraged and made to feel inadequate as we grow. Once we are adults our complex becomes aroused unexpectedly and we behave in ways that appear comically irrational: to illustrate, I become defensive and pouty when I feel I’m not being taken seriously. My unconscious transports me to childhood where my feelings of inferiority surface and I react to a lifetime of experiences that have fed into my inferiority complex.

The personal unconscious also consists of Shadow ~ sides of ourselves we don’t want others to see so we deny, reject, suppress, project in an effort to be liked, or more primitively loved, and accepted by the society of which we are a part. As children we are guided by parents, caregivers, peers, and our culture towards a socially acceptable version of who we are. We learn that tantrums are unacceptable and we stuff our rage. We are taught that violence is impermissible by means of an innocuous-household-item-turned-weapon (e.g. the dreaded wooden spoon or belt) and we stuff our physical urges. We receive isolation as punishment for demanding behaviours, and discouragement for expressions of dissatisfaction. We are scowled at and shamed for exploration of our bodies. We stuff all these so-called negative behaviours with a good dose of frustration at the hypocrisy of the grown-up world, and thus the Shadow is born.

These two (as well as other) hidden aspects of the self exist, with or without acknowledgement. For as long as we choose to deny our unconscious, and remain unwilling to engage in an active inner life, the unconscious reveals itself in our outer life. Without self-knowledge we are victims of our own incomprehension, and suffer self-sabotage time and again as we meet our own inner life demons in manifest material world form. We experience our inner life in our outer life. This occurs on both a personal and collective level.

Circumstances work to bring our awareness to that which is unconscious within us. As these unconscious conditions surface we are given an opportunity to learn about ourselves. So, when I feel anger I am given a chance to be conscious. I observe my feeling and notice the sensations and images that accompany it, as well as my thoughts (my ego’s commentary that fuels the fire of righteous indignation!). While I allow this process to unfold I am conscious. The feeling will pass and I will have learned something about myself, and I will’ve harmed none because I’ve not acted. Feelings bring insights, if we allow ourselves to get the message.

Self-knowledge is power. As we become increasingly aware of the fecundity of our unconscious (including our complexes and Shadow) and learn to integrate these aspects of our psyche into our whole self, we simultaneously cease to be manipulated from the inside out. Awareness seeds the potential for transformation.

Monday 18th of April sees power planets Mars and Pluto station retrograde (this simply means that, from our perspective here on Earth, the two planets appear to stand still and then over the coming weeks and months they appear to move backwards ~ an optical illusion similar to cars moving a different speeds on a freeway) and so begins a time of contemplation.

This phase encourages us to surrender our drive to act, in favour of pausing to reflect. I have found that Mars retrograde periods can be quite frustrating, especially when they impact sensitive points in one’s chart. But action taken in haste can lead us into trouble at times like this, so it is worth recalling wise 13th century Sufi poet~mystic~philospher Rumi’s sagacious words…

When I run after what I think I want, my days are a furnace of distress and anxiety;

If I sit in my own place of patience, what I need flows to me, and without any pain.

From this I understand that what I want also wants me, is looking for me and attracting me.

As Mars returns to Scorpio we are invited back into our dark, and for the next four months we are urged to re-examine our motives and discern our true desires. Rather than pushing for results, demanding action, or impulsively acting out of fears and anxiety, we are better suited now to reflect upon the profound question: What do we really want?

Retrograde Pluto (from now until mid January) will bring our awareness to that in our lives which is ready for release or transformation. Pluto powers our inner work, and as unconscious conditions surface they enable us to examine our own chthonic depths. There exists a seed of potential to re-emerge more powerful, wise and whole than ever before. With loving kindness, compassion, willingness and patience this time will nurture our evolution and facilitate profound healing on a personal and collective level.

 

 

To quote the wonderful Leunig again…

 

God give us strength

Strength to hold on

And strength to let go

Amen