“There are more things in Heaven and Earth, Horatio,
than are dreamt of in your philosophy.”
~Shakespeare, Hamlet, I-v, 166
Long time readers of Atlas Astrology will have noticed that I have been quiet over the past little while. A long while. While I am reluctant to explain this sporadic presence by saying “I’ve been having a Pluto transit” the truth is that is what has been happening. And for readers with some background in astrology, it will be helpful to know that I have been having a Pluto transit (to the Sun in the 9th house of my chart) as I communicate the main ideas of this post.
In a recent interview with Guru Jagat, astrologer Barbara Hand Clow bemoaned that Pluto often gets a bad rap. People hear they’re going to have a Pluto transit and become afraid that their house is going to burn down or someone will die. I was not immune from similar fears.
Well, I agree with Barbara Hand Clow that Pluto is an agent of light. And there is a function of death that Pluto has to do with, but that that death is not always literal. I certainly feel like a part of me has died. I even feel that a part of me has been forcefully wrenched from my own understanding of myself. There was and is a lot that is happening both internally and externally as Pluto transits the natal Sun in my chart, but maybe I will save some of that for a post that pertains to the transit of Pluto in particular.
In this post I want to begin to describe my philosophical shift that is still unfolding with respect to the use and practice of astrology, as well as astrology’s place in a broader understanding of life and the universe.
Over the course of 2019, I had several major attitude shifts toward life in general. I attribute these to the deepening of my spiritual path. Here are some of them:
- Embracing of the natural flow of life vs. trying to direct it
- Faith that life will take me where I am meant to go vs. previously being enamored with the idea of designing my own destiny
- Trust that I can’t miss what is meant for me
These attitude shifts did not come to me easily. They were not walk in the park realizations for me. It’s not like I was sitting in meditation one day when I gently received the understanding that life is unfolding perfectly and I came out of meditation beaming and delighted about it. On the contrary, these new points of view arrived as the result of some major letting go of deeply held identifications, aspirations, and dreams over a somewhat extended period of time (I’d say about as long as Pluto has been in orb of a transit to my Sun). And as a very cardinal, very self-directed, very gung-ho, “not if it is possible but how is it possible” type of individual, these realizations came with involuntary surrenders of my own definition of myself.
Naturally, these shifts in life philosophy would also spill over to how I view astrology. As my spiritual interest became more foregrounded in a more external way in my life, I came to new inclinations of ways to orient myself with respect to the use, practice and sharing of astrology.
As I started to comprehend myself more and more as a soul who has lived many lifetimes with many personalities and seeds of desire that have come to fruition in the lifetimes those desire-fruits were ripe to be born, I became less and less inclined to see myself as just Ichrak in this lifetime, with the Sun in the 9th house who is having a Pluto transit.
As my desire to get away from identifying myself as Ichrak in this lifetime grew, I began to think that my desires, no matter what they were, were kind of “contentless”. All desires became generic desires, except the desire for god. Because all desires have the seed of dissatisfaction within them. We all think we are going to be happy when XYZ, but then we get there and we just want something else. Desires are a bottomless pit of more desire.
And then the perspective came that the particulars of my personality and my life circumstances are also “contentless”, by virtue of the fact that I am born here on earth. So the fact that I was born under Capricorn or when the planets were composed in such a way in the sky, started to matter less to me than earnestly attempting to live as if I am a soul who is here to understand that I am not actually a Capricorn who was born when the planets were composed in such a way in the sky, but to realize the true nature of my Self.
So I have come to the questions – in light of understanding that I am here to realize the nature of my Self, what can astrology actually tell me? How can astrology help me? How can astrology help my clients? How does my practicing astrology bring more light to the world?
I will explore those questions in the next installment of these mini-series.