Forty-Four

By a river, the Sun was a big, orange orb, just setting. I saw a group of ibis landing in the water. One of them came to me. It was dark, but I could make out its silhouette against the dark red of the Sun. We were standing in ankle-deep, crystal clear water. We could see fish, tadpoles, larvae and other living things moving, swimming.

Then the water thickened, it became muddy. “It’s how it is, there are cycles, the water thickens, then clears up” the ibis explained. And, with its long beak, it picked a larva. I thought it would eat it, but threw it behind its back instead. At that instant, the thing transformed into a fully developed insect – a dragonfly or a butterfly, and it flew away. The ibis did the same with other forms of life in the mud, they all turned into their fully developed selves and flew or jumped away.

“But some of them you eat or discard, don’t you?”

The ibis didn’t reply, just looked at me silently.

“How do they know what is going to happen when you single them out?”

“They don’t.”

The river turned into a wood, and the ibis transformed into a woodpecker. I could see bugs and grubs deep under the bark of a giant tree. The woodpecker looked at me intently, then started to do its job.

Twenty-Two

It is the time of my solar return, and I wanted to meet the Sun in my birth chart. I went to the dark, underground forest where he  took me the first time. I saw him sitting on a chair, with golden hair reaching a bit beyond his shoulder. The Siberian man was gently combing his hair, and I was wondering whether the Sun was male or female, it was not obvious at all. He stood up and he started to turn and turn, and once he was a man and once she was a woman. Then he came to see me, a young man around 18 or less.

“Why are you so young?” – I asked him.
“Because you want to see me that way. When your daughter was born, you decided I was not up to the task of raising her and set me aside. You decided I was childish, that I cannot function well enough in the real world.”
“And can you? You are hardly aware of time, for example. How could you feed her, or how could you fetch her from school in time? How would you notice she’s grown out of her trousers and needs a new pair? and so much more. Mystical realms is one thing, but my daughter is the most important in the world, and she needs someone who takes care of her, whom she can rely on. I doubt that’s you.”
“That’s fine, but can’t we do something better than this? How long do you think this can go on?”
“I have no idea. As long as she needs me, I guess”
“Please. You really underestimate me. I am not a child. And I’m not so childish, either.”

He opened up like a flower, and there was a woman, smiling. Then she opened up and there was a very old man. And he opened up and there was a very old woman. And he opened up and there was the young Sun, again.

“Alright” – I said. “I am sorry”.

I took his hand and we started to walk out of the dark forest, through a tunnel. I could feel his hand change in mine, and when I looked back, he looked more like a woman. Then we got out of a cave, and she was the ever-changing, dark haired, almond-eyed woman from my other meditation.

The Siberian man ran to her and hugged her, then ran to me and hugged me, too. He was very happy.

Seventeen

I wanted to meet Jupiter, but I could not see him anywhere. I was on the rocky side of a mountain, very high up. There was hardly enough room for my feet. I looked up and saw a figure standing on the top, with the head of a bull.

“What the hell”, I thought to myself, and I remembered that I had Taurus intercepted in the tenth house. I started to wonder what it actually meant to be intercepted. I was hoping the Siberian man would turn up soon, but I couldn’t see him anywhere. I could smell snow, and I was visited by a memory from my childhood: my mother and I were walking in the town centre, it was already dark, and soon it would be Christmas. I needed a pair of boots, and my mother was dragging me by the hand, pulling me to go faster, faster. I was staring at the shopwindows as we hurried by, I knew my mother wanted me to hurry so that I wouldn’t see them, all the Christmas decoration, the toys, the lights… our Christmases were always disastrous, lots of tension, rows, and cold… it started to snow, and it looked so beautiful, snowflakes glittering in the lamplight… my mother was talking to me but I couldn’t get myself to listen, I just wanted to let go of her hand and stay there, staring at the sparkling snowflakes dancing between my fingers…

Suddenly, I was back on the rocks, again, very high up, and I remembered that I had always thought that’s how I would end up one day: jump from a very high place. On my way home from school, I had to cross a railway bridge, and each time I stopped in the middle, stared down and imagined what it would be like to jump. I wouldn’t have to go home, never again. And then took a deep breath and walked away, walked home.

Then I noticed the Siberian man, he arrived at last. I asked him: “What is Taurus doing there? he’s not even my actual midheaven, he’s intercepted. I wonder what interception is about anyway…”

The Siberian man started to laugh “why don’t you ask the Sun? He knows all about it”. I shrugged. “I don’t know, all that Scorpio stuff, I don’t feel like meeting the Sun, it would be like being a child again, I hated being a child. Do we have to see him?”. The Siberian man stepped closer, embraced my face with his hands and looked deeply into my eyes. Suddenly I could see myself through his eyes, as if we swapped bodies.

And behind me, I saw the Sun climbing the rocks. He was young, probably under 18, wearing a long, white shirt, like a dress. His hair was blond, and he had golden flames around his head, like a crown. “Oh, shit” I thought, and I was myself again, “what is he doing up here?”. But the Siberian man shrugged, smiling.

Then I felt movement above us, too, and I saw that Taurus was descending, he was coming to meet us. The Sun arrived, smiled at me, but I was not at ease. He offered his hand, and I took it. By that time, Taurus arrived, too, and he took my other hand. We were staring down into the depths, and I understood what we were going to do. I got frightened, looked back at the Siberian man behind us.

“Won’t you come with us? please come with us.” – (“Don’t leave me alone with them,” I thought, but didn’t dare to say it out loud, I didn’t want to hurt the feelings of the Sun and Taurus).  The Siberian man nodded and hugged me from behind.

And we jumped.

We were falling, falling, falling into darkness. Sometimes I saw roots of plants, sometimes I smelled soil. When we landed, we were in a night forest.

“is it always dark here? do you live in darkness?” – I asked the Sun.

He smiled, holding a candle in his hand “I am kind of a midnight Sun, after all. But no, how could I live in darkness, I am the Sun, I take light with me wherever I go”.

Of course, I thought to myself, I was stupid.

I still had no clue what Taurus was doing there, but he was coming with us anyway.

At one point, I saw something like an owl on a tree branch, but it changed into something else, with strange eyes, and it was shifting fast, couldn’t even grasp how many things it was at the same time.

“What is that?” – I asked the Sun.

“Oh, it’s one of Venus‘ creatures”

“Is she some kind of a witch? did she bewitch that poor animal into some kind of a hybrid?”

The Sun started to laugh, and so did Taurus.

“No, Venus is not a witch. She doesn’t make these creatures, she gathers them”

“Gathers them what for?”

I suddenly saw something like a cross between an old woman and some kind of an animal, but again, changing shapes so fast I could not even register what was going on.

“Is she one of them?” I asked. “Is Venus some kind of a hybrid? or a monster?”

“Don’t say that, she’s hurt enough. She’s not a monster” the Sun replied.

Then I saw a young woman, who came to meet us. Her hair didn’t look like hair, more like feathers, and I noticed she had feathers on her arms, too. I couldn’t resist touching her, and I felt embarrassed, hoping I did not offend her.

Two

I tried to go back to meet the Sun, but I couldn’t clear my mind. Then I thought, what if i just went back into that sphere, maybe the golden bee could help me, maybe just standing there and observing it go round and round in its elliptical orbit would quiet my mind… So I entered the sphere, and there it was. I went closer and wondered whether it was the Sun in some other form, I don’t know why, maybe because of its golden colour… or maybe because I thought the Sun would want to stay with me wherever I went…  or maybe it was Mercury, because once I had a dream with Hermes, and in that dream, it was a flock of golden bees that merged together to give him human form… I asked, but the bee didn’t answer.

As I was just staring, at one point I noticed some dark figures emerging out of the fog of the sphere, I was not sure whether they were trees or people or something in-between, but I got tense, and I could feel pain in my belly. “Don’t be afraid” the bee said (she had a female voice), and I tried to focus on her instead of the creatures around me, but couldn’t quite manage. Then she started to circulate around me anti-clockwise, embracing, “don’t be afraid. breathe. slower…. slower”. I could feel her warmth, but sometimes the shadows seemed to have faces, staring at me, and I felt so… guilty… so ashamed.

It reminded me of my father’s funeral, all those people staring at us, “the family”, we had to sit on a pedestal. and I felt so numb, so dead… my mother kept poking me with her elbow “your father loved you the most in the world, and you can’t even cry, look how people are staring at us and you don’t even cry, aren’t you ashamed, and I thought you loved him so much. You’re big enough to understand he’s dead.” But all I wanted was to go the coffin and look into my father’s eyes. “Can I see him, mom, can I just go and look into his eyes? why are they closed?”. – “Don’t be silly, he probably doesn’t even have them anymore, when someone dies, they take him to the morgue, cut him apart, take things out, put some of it back just so that he looks okay in the coffin.”. I was shocked. “where are dad’s eyes? what did they do with them?” – “maybe they are in formaldehyde somewhere, or in a dustbin. why does it matter?” I was horrified. All I could think of was my father being chopped up, his eyes taken out and thrown away…

It grew very dark and heavy around me, and the room shrank very small, stifling, like a casket. At that point, the bee entered my belly and started to circulate within. It was a very strange feeling, at first it was even painful, but at the same time, very warm,  and I started to feel lighter. I looked up and the sphere was growing quite large, and becoming transparent, I could see the starry sky above me. But when I took my eyes off the sky and saw those shadows, the sphere suddenly got obscure again and suffocatingly small. “Breathe” said the bee, “breathe, slower”. It felt very warm, and I was pulsating, vibrating like a tuning fork, and the sphere started to grow again, turning transparent to the stars…

One

I just sat down by the curb (it was a street at night, without any public lights) and waited to see who wants to come and meet me. It was the Sun.  My first thought was that he was the parody of the Sabian symbol for the Sun in my natal chart: 4 Scorpio: “A youngster holding a lighted candle”. His head was a glowing orb, but you could also see a face, with the expression of a child ready to do some mischief. His hands were huge, as if they were the hands of a big plush figure. They reminded me of little red riding hood “‘ But, grandmother, what large hands you have!’   ‘All the better to hug you with.’ . “No, thank you” I said, “okay” said the Sun,  shrugged and sat next to me onto the curb. “I”m not in a good mood”, I said. “you’re telling me? I’m soon going to be eclipsed” – he laughed. True, I thought, there’s going to be an eclipse in the morning.

So, the Sun was sitting next to me on the curb, and he started to blow little golden bubbles that followed each other in a row, like a floating ribbon, high up above us, and I realized they were actually Hebrew letters. “I don’t read Hebrew” – I told him. “oh, don’t you?” – he replied, not giving a damn whether I do or I don’t. I was staring at the letters, moving, glowing in the night, and I remembered how, as a child, I used to blur my vision and let patterns emerge from everything, the stains on the wall, the drops of water on the table, if I stared long enough, there was always a form emerging, in 3D and alive…

As I started to look at the golden Hebrew letters this way, they assembled into the kabbalistic Tree of Life. My interest in the Kabbalah was a long time ago and short-lived, because I didn’t like how hierarchical the system was, it seemed too square, too rigid. This tree of life, however, was not some dead structure, at all, it seemed very much alive.

“I am not doing the work of the Kabbalah” – I said to the Sun. “oh, don’t you?”- he shrugged, didn’t seem to care. He lifted me up, and as he touched me, I became small in his hand for a moment, and he just blew me into one of the ten spheres as if I was a soap bubble. “that’s where you are right now” – he said. It was the second sphere from the top, first on the left.

It was foggy inside, I could sense presence, but couldn’t actually see anything except a tiny golden bee flying round and round on an elliptical orbit. Then a woman approached through a corridor, dressed in beautifully ornamented, but heavy materials, her face was hidden, too, and she was quite tall. I wondered if she was the Bride the Kabbalah was talking about, but I was not sure because from her voice and her stature, I guessed she was more of a matriarch than a young woman.

I started to wonder which of the spheres I was in, I vaguely recalled each had its own name and symbolism, but I could not remember them at all. “You’re wondering where you are” – the woman said, “don’t worry, you can find out all about it when we’re done”. I told her I was not interested in the Kabbalah, and she shrugged, it didn’t matter. “So, what are you interested in?” I told her that I have come to a point when I actually can’t see the point in anything at all. Then she stepped closer, lifted my hands up (that’s when I realized I was resting them on my abdomen) and asked “Oh, really, and how’s the belly?”. I blushed. She let my hands go, and said “I’m sure you want to look around, I’ll leave you to it, see you later” and walked away. And there I was, standing in the fog, watching the tiny golden bee drawing its ellipses…

.


Note:

The sphere is called Binah. I found out that according to the Kabbalah, there are two kinds of understanding, Chokhmah and Binah. Chokhmah is raw insight, the “divine spark”.  “This point is both infinitely small, and yet encompasses the whole of being, but it remains incomprehensible until it is given shape and form in Binah.” wikipedia

Binah is the other kind of understanding, it is also called the “womb” or “mother”, “intuitive understanding”, “processed wisdom”. Binah is not considered as a positive experience, this sphere is associated with Saturn, because it constricts the infinite potential and inspiration of Chokhmah so that some of that potential can materialize. They also associate Binah with nurturing and “repentance”, which seems a strange pairing at first, but the original Hebrew word for repentance  is teshuva, and it literally means “return”. Binah is an arduous sphere, it asks for an understanding of how one strayed from God/wholeness, and it requires one to take action to return to wholeness/God.

I think Binah is quite an adequate metaphor for where I am right now.  I’ve had all kinds of mystical experiences and sudden insights all my life, but I never figured out what I was supposed to do with them,  they often just left me confused and upset. That is  “Chokhmah”. And, according to the Sun, now I have entered “Binah”, where I have some work to do…

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