Fifty-Five

Shadows walking among shadows, we were in the forest with the Siberian man and a few others. The Sun might have been setting or rising: everything vibrated in shades of red, green and violet.

Suddenly, we spotted a herd of yellow deer browsing in the woods. They started to run, then slowed down and returned. Their leader was a golden buck with green leaves on the tip of his antlers. He was magical. And we were mesmerised.

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Fifty-Four

It was a winter night, the snow was sparkling. We were in the fields with the Siberian man and a group of others. He took a handful of snow to access the soil, and we all descended. There were seeds nested in the blackness around us. Softly glimmering, like the stars above. We were in the belly of the earth, but also everywhere at the same time. It was the same sky above and below. And we were surrounded by an alive, endless, glowing universe.

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Fifty-Two

There were colourful fish of all shapes floating in the night. They started to pour in one direction, as if carried by a powerful air current. As I followed them, the darkness gently dissipated. We were in a forest, I saw birch trees gliding by. Then I noticed that there was a river below, wild geese swimming in the depths. All were racing ahead: the fish above, the geese below…

I spotted a house in the distance. Maybe that was where we were heading… but we were too fast. The wind drew the river out of its bed and the mass of water was floating in the air, surging ahead with us. I was worried that it would flood and destroy the forest. But the flux did not burst, it slowed down instead. I turned to face it. The water was like a tunnel embracing a void. Its core was invisible, silent and still. I was mesmerised: should I enter?

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Forty-Eight

I was sitting cross-legged in the sand in the desert, my breath circulating around my body like golden strings. There was a big storm coming, and I was worried. But the Siberian man came and sat down behind me, with his back touching mine. Our breaths joined, golden threads brushing our skin. “That is not our storm”, he said. I felt calm, centered. All was raging around us but we were not touched. I raised my head to look at the blue sky above me, the clouds were gently wandering about. No signs of upheaval up there.

When it calmed down, we were still sitting there. Suddenly, I started to see in a different way, like staring into the Sun with eyes closed. It felt as if I was watching with my skin or through my skin, from the inside. At first, it was dark, then very blurred. Slowly, I could make out a huge eye, of somebody very old, somebody very ancient. She was so close to my face that I could feel her breath. And she was looking at me.

Forty-One

It was night. We were a group of people standing with arms stretched out wide, carrying fire in our hands. I could feel its warmth. There was nothing else to be seen or heard. All was dark and still. We entered the sea and leaned back, one by one. Floated. The water was blooming fire. And then, we submerged and dived deeper and deeper, carrying our fires with us into the depths.

Forty

I was on a rope between two cliffs. There was a village deep below. A group of people were standing on the rocks behind me and the Siberian man was in front. They were holding the rope I was walking, heading towards him. I had a pole in my hand for balance, but it was not easy.

Then two eagles descended onto the two ends of the bar. They were heavy. Suddenly, they grabbed the pole with their claws and took me for a flight. At first, I was just holding onto it, hanging, like a piece of cloth, but then I pulled myself up to sit, one leg in front and one behind, stabilising myself. I started to enjoy the journey. The eagles made a few circles with me, high up in the cold air before we landed on the rope again, exactly on the same spot I had been before, right in the middle.

One eagle pressed the end of the bar downwards, and pushed me into a spin, up and down, up and down, while my feet stayed fixed onto the rope. When I was upside down, the colours around me changed into their reverse, as if on a negative, but as soon as I was upright, they changed back to normal.

When we stopped spinning, I was upside down. It felt as if there was water between my feet and the rope. I could feel some kind of surface tension that kept me in place. The cold was getting sharper, but I started to go forward anyway. My flesh was freezing solid.

As I arrived to the cliff, I tried to flip back upright, but I couldn’t. I had to bend so that I could reach up for the rope and pull myself up to sit first, and then stood up. And all the while, I didn’t let go of the pole.

I went on walking towards the Siberian man, and handed him the bar. When I looked at my hands, I saw that there was nothing but bones left on my left side. He reached out for my hand. For a moment, I thought he would somehow put the flesh back. Instead, he splattered the bones of my left hand with a sudden gesture, as if sowing seeds. My whole body went with this movement. I turned into small pieces of bones falling into the depths like rain.

In a million bits, I was still aware of myself, aware of falling and falling. And there came such a torrent that I could hardly make out the Siberian man or the people, high up, in the distance. But I could see the fire arrow he shot into the dark. And the people on the other side did the same. Another fire arrow, followed by a cluster of flames. Again and again.

They were helping. I tried to gather the splattered me-s and drift towards the fire arrows, and we slowly started to ascend. The Siberian man and his friends were always shooting at the same spot, and I wanted to be exactly where they were aiming at.

When I got there, I was hit by the fire arrows and lit up for a second. The bits and pieces of me drifting around merged again, and I was floating in the night sky. Then I started to descend gently, arriving right in front of the Siberian man. “Welcome”, he said.

I sat on my heels, and he put his hand on my head. I was filled with warmth. The people from the other side walked across the abyss to greet me, too. They all put their hands on my head, hand on hand on hand, and started to circle slowly. I could feel my whole body pulsating.

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Thirty-Eight

(I just discovered that Jupiter in my natal chart is conjunct the fixed star Praesepe, in the star cluster “the Beehive” (NGC 2638). Traditional sources consider this cluster “malefic” and a bad omen. Chinese astrologers, however, call it “the spirit of ancestors”. I decided to ask the Siberian man about it.)

We met on the beach at dusk. The sea was almost invisible, melting into the darkening, violet haze.

“Tell me, why is the Beehive destructive?” I asked.
“Well, these traditional astrologers of yours, they were not exactly serving a goddess, were they?” he replied, staring at the sky, waiting for the stars to appear.
“What do you mean?”
“That most of them were serving the same god in whose name people hunted witches and pagans… so it was mostly the dark side of the goddess that they recognised…”

We sat there silently for a while, and as darkness was getting denser, the first stars became visible. I also spotted the Moon.

“And whom do You serve?”, I looked at him.
“I serve Life. Mindless merging with the goddess can indeed bring horrible destruction. But there is another way to connect with her. By bringing consciousness. So many of the ancient traditions believed that light and darkness are foes. It is not so. They crave each other. Without the other, both are dead and deadly. Look at the night sky. The stars. The Moon. The gentle glow around and within. Look around you in plain daylight. All the shades and shadows that give form and colour to everything. Light and darkness, they are not enemies. They are two lovers, making love.”

Thirty-Five

It was very dark, I was under the sea. I glimpsed at some lines running, they were contained by a transparent pipe, like communications cables. Then I spotted a pair of feet in the sand, on the beach, slowly washed by the sea. They must have belonged to a very old woman, but I could not see her, my vision was blocked, as if I was looking through a tube or a telescope.

Afterwards, there was deep darkness, but I could make out the outlines of a mountainous landscape. There came a flock of birds, darker than the night, moving fast, around and around. I could only see half of the circle they were making, and could not move my head or my eyes to see more. I still had tunnel vision.

A bit later, they started to circle in the other direction, flying backwards. There was a small river, flowing in a forest, and it started to go backwards, and a deer by the bank was running in reverse, too. Then I watched a butterfly crawl back into the pupa.

At that point, all went dark. But then, darkness itself was moving, circling around me. And I caught sight of a tiny, golden bee, glowing in front of me. She was in slow motion, not going anywhere, floating. I lifted my arms and tried to move them in the same rhythm. I took off.

She started to fly, and I followed, glowing against the blackness around us. We reached a hive, I could hardly see a thing, but it was buzzing with life. We moved forward and forward. Then we stopped, and I could feel that we arrived. I tried to make out what was in front of me. It was a hexagon-shaped cell in a wall full of hexagon-shaped cells.

Something was moving within, and I thought it was a bee hatching. But the moment it broke through the membrane, I realised it was not a bee, but an eye, looking right at me. I was intrigued.

Suddenly, I was outside, under a dark sky, again. And I saw the eye above me, still watching. There came some wind, and bit by bit, it was covered by clouds.

Twenty

I was in a cavern by the sea, I could not see the water but I could hear its roar: there was a storm. Then the waves came into the cave, and a long figure lifted me up and threw me into the water. I couldn’t swim. He caught me, lifted me up, threw me in again. “learn to swim” he said, and did it again and again. I still couldn’t swim. It didn’t work. It was pointless.

Then the waves left the space and the man disappeared. I heard the sounds of footsteps, but couldn’t see anyone. The footsteps sometimes came from one direction, then from the other. It was quite dark, I could hardly see a thing.  I was anxious, and I could feel my anxiety burning in my belly.

Then I remembered the eye in my navel, and I decided to try and open it and look around. It felt strange, but it worked, I could see a dim figure, I wondered if it was an animal, it felt so alien. It was changing shape, taking form… at one moment, it looked like the head of a snail, then it resembled Yoda from Star Wars… whatever it was, it was something very different and strange.

“Who are you?” – I asked.

There was no reply. I tried to guess, but its energy felt so alien that I had no idea what this being could be. Was it one of the outer planets? Uranus? Pluto? Neptune? None of them aspect the Moon in my natal chart… Saturn? He wouldn’t be so fluid… why didn’t it say something? Whatever it was, it must have come in answer to my question about my mother – just before meditation, I wondered why our relationship was so complicated.

Then, it occurred to me that maybe it couldn’t talk. I showed him a natal chart, with the houses, but without planets in it. It was like a map drawn on a piece of cloth. “Show me where you are in my birth chart”. It put its finger onto the 8th house. I have no planets in the 8th house. I tried to visualize my natal chart to see what could be there.

In the meantime, the creature found something like a ladder against the wall of the cave, and started crawling upwards. He looked more like a lizard right now… or… I suddenly remembered what was in my 8th house. “You are the tail of the dragon, the South Node” I said, and he indeed looked like a dragon now.

He reached some kind of plateau, where he transformed into a lion, and kept walking forward. When he reached the end of the plateau, it looked down into the depth, it was vast and there was a dark lake at the bottom.

Suddenly, the huge head of a dragon rose out of the lake, it was threatening, the lion was scared. He transformed into a wolf, but the wolf was scared, too. Then it transformed into a little girl, resembling Alice in “Alice in Wonderland”, the Disney cartoon.

The dragon swallowed her. She traveled through the body of the dragon, down the abyss, into the lake, up the ladder, and popped out at the tail. Then the dragon swallowed her again. This was repeated quite a few times.

Then I heard a voice close to me: “Don’t follow the white rabbit.”. It was probably the Siberian man. I wondered whether he was amused…

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