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At the Threshold of a Dream
subtle meanings of the Full Moon in Cancer
This year we have a Full Moon just after Christmas. Malvin Artley, our regular esoteric commentator, examines the subtle implications of the Full Moon in Cancer, the Capricorn Moon for 2004. The relationship between Venus and Saturn in the light of the deep symbolism of the spirit is explained. This Full Moon, one of the most powerful lunations, occurs on Boxing Day, December 26th. This is the traditional Feast of St Stephen, when gifts and meals were given to the poor.
Merry Christmas Everyone!
With Christmas coming, business goes into a mad rush before the holiday shut-down period and the week before Christmas can be a hectic one for my trade. This past week was a bit of a departure from the seeming endless string of days, broken machines and correspondence. I meet many interesting people and go into some strange work spaces in my travels. This week I found myself at an Air Force base quoting the maintenance of the machines for their maintenance department's shop. It is a surreal experience to enter such an area. All at once I felt a fascination at the new sights being presented to me, an ominous feeling knowing the purposes for which all the military hardware could be used, anxiety about putting a foot wrong somehow and what could happen as a result, a flood of memories from my childhood, remembrance of the fighting forces scattered throughout the world, and a feeling that, somehow, this was a sort of graduation—that something greater was beginning to present itself—and that brings its own sort of giddiness and anxiety as well. More on the last point later.
As I walked into the main hangar where the maintenance shop is, there before my eyes was a Blackhawk helicopter and a jet fighter plane. For a civilian, that was quite a sight. Everyone knows those things are there, but to see one up close is an experience in itself. The machines I was there to quote suddenly seemed a pale comparison to the technology that was there before me—and I didn't really see that much. But, the thought was there and there were millions of man-hours and a lot of bright people represented by those two machines in themselves.
Like most boys, I played endless hours of “Army” with the boys in the neighborhood when I was a kid. We would all fancy ourselves war heroes and dream endlessly about piloting a plane or other piece of hardware like the ones I saw, giving the “enemy” his due and saving the world in the process. Sometimes it was just a lot of fun to blast things and create general mayhem with our imaginary foes. What's the old saying?—Boys will be boys. It is strange what gives boys in particular those impulses. But, somehow we all managed to grow out of it and become men who would rather make love than war and who knew deep within our hearts that we could never really do the things that we played at as kids except if our families and homelands were threatened. As I stood there and stared at the objects of some of my boyhood fantasies, all of those memories came flooding back. A part of me was going “Cool!”, but now my thoughts were not of what they could do, but of what they represented in so many areas—human inventiveness, collective effort, human achievement, state-of-the-art technology, the pain of human conflict, so on and so forth. So, would I still like to go up in one of those machines? You bet! Would I like to “see action” in one? Not unless lives depended upon it—and even then I wouldn't like it, to understate the fact.
The preceding hardly sounds like a Christmas story, but Capricorn is not really about Christmas, although Christmas has an awful lot to do with Capricorn, as we shall see. I will, however, have some Christmas cheer a bit later on. These past weeks—and, indeed, the past months—have been a busy time as the year winds down to its inevitable close. The Personages who oversee the wellbeing of our beautiful little world are entering their sabbatical and reflection on the year that was and the one that is to be as the Sun moves into Capricorn. This has been a full year for so many of us and the times seem only to get busier and more demanding as the days click by. Maybe that is just my own perception, but I am hearing people say similar things wherever I go. Capricorn is a period in the yearly cycle that is very much given over to reflection, assessment, adjustment and renewal of relationships. It is also a time when recognition comes, but what I mean by this is more an inner recognition of things achieved, things needing to be done and of one's own inner standing in relation to groups, both inner and outer.
One thing that becomes beautifully clear to anyone who studies the inner side of astrology for long enough is that the mythology and stories that describe all of the astrological signs are actually allegories for the great Lives that called the signs forth and Who guide our planet still from the inner planes—the lofty centers of divine consciousness. A sign is both a representation and an emanation of a living Being, a Being of immense size, composed of innumerable Lives, of very ancient origin (earlier even than the beginnings of our present solar system), of infinite wisdom and compassion and—most interestingly—composed of Lives who were all once human far back in the mists of cosmic history (far back to us, anyway).
I have spoken in previous articles about the great Hierarchies of Being that the signs represent. What did not get stated in those articles is that what I was outlining was actually only the outer appearance of those Lives. The true story is more fantastic still. There is a subjective side to the astrological signs that describes both the state of consciousness of those Lives and their relation to all other lives and Hierarchies. Some of these Lives date back hundreds of trillions of years if the information we are given is to be believed. It all seems inconceivable. Then again, what is a few hundred trillion years in eternity? Truth is much more fantastic than any fiction.
Two Capricorn Moons in 2004
Let's get back to more earthly matters and closer time lines, though. There will have been two Capricorn full moons this year. The first one was on the 4th of January this year. So, we could say that 2004 was bounded by the 2 Capricorn moons. It is a sort of “Blue Year” in terms of Capricorn moons and points to the exceeding emphasis of Saturn and this most mysterious sign for 2004. It is a year that has seen the ascendancy of the conservative powers in governments, the rise of the Religious Right in politics, the Abu Garib prison scandal, sexual scandals with the Church, on Pitcairn Island, with child pornography and with football clubs (in Australia), the tragedy of Beslan, the Free Trade Agreement between the US and Australia, the death of Yassar Arafat with consequent changes in policy in the mid-East to come, the achievements of the athletes at the Olympics and a marriage between a prince and a commoner, to name but a few of the main events of the year. We have seen the triumph of the human spirit and the depths of human darkness, true to the nature of Capricorn. Of course, we see these types of things every year, but 2004 just seemed to feel particularly loaded with extremes and to be more poignant somehow. It is of interest that we will not have a Capricorn full moon in 2005, and that the lunar year for 2005 will be what is known as a Doubly Blind year—generally considered to be inauspicious and indicating a loss of direction. Whatever we personally thought of 2004, though, it has been a year that will have marked milestones for a great many people, myself included.
Traditionally, Capricorn is the sign that marks milestones and achievement in the public eye. It is one of those signs where the orthodox and esoteric rulers are the same, that ruler being Saturn, whereas the ruler of the Hierarchy represented by the sign is Venus. So, in Capricorn we have a curious blending of energies, seemingly at odds with each other from the orthodox perspective, but productive of powerful results from standpoint of the inner side of things. Capricorn is said to rule the human persona esoterically, and it brings with it the Light of Initiation, that Light which leads to the mountaintop-the pinnacle of human achievement, and the place where union with God is finally known by the little self. Objectively, it does represent the human persona with all the highs and lows that implies. Subjectively, though, it is the higher Self that stands behind this persona and gives it birth and evolution through the long series of lives we experience as humans and through the long ages of struggle to return to the heart of God via the path of human experience. This word “experience”—the results of that, more to the point—are what life as a Capricorn type brings to a person. The recognition of achievement through hard-won experience-that is what ultimately colors the Capricorn native.
I have written much on Venus this year, on its symbolism, its action and its effects. It is one of the most important planets from the human perspective because it does stand for the Soul and for our relation to our own higher Self. Through the sign of Capricorn we get to the fullness of its meaning to us, though, strange as that may sound. Most people do not equate Capricorn with a loving nature. Yet, the struggle through the experience of Capricorn is exactly how we are lead to finally know the fullness of love in our nature and eventual liberation from our struggles and the pull of Saturn. The two planets actually work hand-in-hand.
In part two of this article, Malvin looks at the concept of Venus as Lucifer, the Light Bearer, the esoteric symbol for the ensoulment of the spark of Divine Consciousness in the the human body. The relationship between the body, soul, mind and spirit is revealed through this allegory. Venus as the Morning Star stands
for the struggle of the human mind to emerge from the fiery pit of the world into the divine light of consciousness. Christmas is the time when that spark is renewed, each year in the hope of the perfection of the Human Spirit through the renewal and rebirth of the light of love.
Read part two of At the Threshold of a Dream