Wednesday, August 23, 2017

SOLAR ECLIPSE - August 21, 2017

I remember mom telling me about the solar eclipse she watched as a young child. It must have been the eclipse of 1923. She would have been seven years old. They broke dark glass bottles through which to view it and one of her classmates got a nasty cut. Times have changed. No responsible teacher now would let a second grader use ordinary bottle glass and especially from a broken bottle.

I had no interest in watching this one through special glasses. It was a natural, recurring event and besides it was only partial here in Taos. However, the sun did grow dim and I found myself wanting to wipe clean a non-existent window because the light went down as if God had turned a dimmer switch on the Sun. Nevertheless, I did notice a change in the energy surrounding us. The Moon normally reflects the light of the Sun after the Sun has moved to the invisible side of the Earth. When the Sun goes dark above us, in what would normally be its zenith, it must turn our normal perception inside out.

Somehow, this fits perfectly with the times. Many qualities associated with Leo, the astrological sign ruled by the Sun, such as ideals, leadership, authority and protection from dark forces seems to be turned inside out, and apt description I believe, of a Solar eclipse. This analogy is also an apt description of our current world condition and definitely our national leadership. 

The enormous attention given to this Solar Eclipse, indicates that such primal events in nature still activate something equally primal in we modern humans however urbanized we have become. Nature rules in spite of our artificial lights, electronic information and asphalt footing. Of course, we attempt to capture such cosmic events with our mobile phone cameras.

Normally, the Moon reflects light from the Sun and stimulates the inner Sun of the emotional, intuitive realm to come out and play. A full Moon is an exact opposition of the Sun and Moon. However, there is an unseen dark side to the Moon and Full Moons are notorious for stimulating both sides of the Moon.  In our culture, the Moon has a feminine identity, and that is appropriate in that the Moon is only a reflection of the dominant Sun who has all the other planets revolving around him. This, however, is not true in all cultures. It may be that much of the craziness in our daily news has something to do with overlooking the intuitive emotional aspects of human nature and thus leaving them undeveloped and prey to distorted expressions. I can’t help notice that most malicious, brutal and irrational outbursts are coming from young males. They obviously lack something important in their emotional development.

We will never control this rogue behavior with violence and further rejection alone. There has to be a genuine and soul satisfying alternative. Yes, it’s possible; even likely, that politically motivated forces are encouraging much of this explosive behavior, but lighting the wick of a candle has an entirely different effect than lighting the wick of a bomb.  

Some years ago, the rangers in Africa began killing older bull elephants, to thin down herds. Before long, they discovered that the young males went rogue, killing other animals that elephants usually ignore, and harassing the females with babies.  It turned out that older males were necessary to keep the young ones in check and show them how to behave. When one gender is out of balance, all is out of balance. People are more complex, but something important is missing in our development whatever the origins of the problem.


Inevitably, the perceptual filters of our experiences and beliefs are impacting this earth. I believe most of us would agree that it is time for us to become conscious and responsible for the environment we create with our unconscious views. We have lived for a long time with an approaching solar eclipse.  A physical eclipse of the Sun by the body of the Moon that represents all the unconscious powers that we ignore is a great symbol to work with. All that is unconscious is more likely to manifest in destruction rather than creation. However, our universe lives in cycles of a dance of darkness and light. I do hope, however, that the time is not far off for the Sun to shine again on the inside as well as the outside of our lives even though I suspect darkness will become deeper before the light begins to emerge.

1 comment:

  1. Thank you for this reminder. I didn't immediately connect the earthly situation with its lunar significance - gone (dangerously) unconscious.
    I don't know why, but I've always spoken to the moon directly, as an intimate, private friend. I've always called her by her Greek name, Selina. I say hi every night I see her – so quiet and all-seeing, never having to say anything but reminding us to pay attention. She's a reliable companion to a nyctophiliac like myself.
    Her fullness (or ellipsoid mask) each night makes no difference to me. From martial arts I remembered that the Chinese call her thin crescent the ”mikazuki” moon, and I guess a Mr. Gibbous' namesake worked for her growing phases. But to me she's there in full, regardless – just veiled. She has as many sides as there are nights between all and nothing, new and old - and harvest moon.
    I wonder, would it be stretching our analogies too far by drawing a connection to her waxing and waning? If the left side is dark, then the light part is growing. If the right side is dark, the light side is shrinking. I'm thinking of left-right hemispheres of the brain. Only “she” knows. Maybe she awaits us to find out. If she plays with tides, she must also play with cognition.
    I think she also knows that “it's all nature” – even the parts of nature we forget and antagonize. So there's no going outside it. But there is setting aspects of nature against us – or we against it. We say it's “unnatural.” I guess it is, but only relative to what “we” want and need. It kinda reminds me of the whole notion of “saving the planet” - kind of a misnomer. The planet is going nowhere. She is fine. “We” are the ones going away. If nature kills us, it will be by virtue of us killing ourselves, giving us the means with which to do it. – But then we also still think Ptolemaically, don't we? We still say “the sun comes up in the east, sets in the west.
    I appreciate this piece because it draws the two aspects together – our “emotional outbursts” and the moon dance above – stepping inside the Sun's indomitable power and eclipsing it – ever so quietly, gently, almost coquettishly. Mr. Sun burns with a temper, with minimal patience, and yet she takes her time, slipping in and out, almost as if dancing around him. It's the beauty to the beast – a never-ending cosmic courtship. Her crescent is also a kind of spooning with him – an amorous love-making That's the impression she leaves me. Red hot and cool gray.
    What I don't understand is why no one (to my knowledge) has not thought about having a satellite on the dark side of the moon, ready to photograph it as one whole/bright orb – exquisitely exposed at the moment the sun is directly “flush” upon it. That would become, if nothing else, one incredible poster for kid's bedrooms (and mine). We could learn the craters and their names.
    Colorado Springs had only a partial shadow too – like you. I never looked up, just at the terrain as it darkened. Two things struck me: first, the city seemed to quiet down for 2 hours, almost as a gesture of awe and reverence to this cosmic event. That to me was a tribal remembrance. Second, my little dog, Monkey, kept looking at me in a worried manner when we were out in the yard. When we came inside she kept looking out the window with the same nervous , vigilant gaze. Wildlife and pets are so tuned in. It was all very surreal.
    And then … it was over, and everything settled back into its normal groove (for better or worse). If only we could freeze-frame that “reverence” and “remembrance.” – rick

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