Thursday, December 31, 2009

A New Year Arrives

It's New Year's Eve and we have an eclipse of the Moon in Cancer -- the sign ruled by the Moon. Eclipses represent dependable transitions; this is fitting astrology for the end of a year, and even a decade. Yet by our calendar, this is not technically the end of the decade; that's a year from now. When we get wind of the astrology of 2010, we'll see that the coming year is the peak of something that has been building since before Dick and Junior went to Washington and committed treason. However, it's been 10 years today since Y2K; 10 years since another foiled terrorist attack -- the guy who was going to bomb Los Angeles airport (LAX) who was busted by a worker on the Washington State Ferries. Vigilance is indeed the price of liberty.

Eclipses come back to any pair of signs every nine years, and the signs where eclipses happen have a way of coloring the world. One of the themes of eclipses across Cancer and Capricorn is emotional dependency and its counterpart, the need to submit to authority. Back when people other than advertising writers thought about psychology, a few of us understood that giving away our power was an emotionally-driven process, fueled by fear and the refusal to take authority for our own lives. Erich Fromm called it the Escape from Freedom.

Here's a theory for you: humans rarely seem to grow out of the tendencies we develop in our early childhood relationships with authority figures -- such as our almighty parents; ministers who claim to personally wield the power of God; and teachers who can inflict torture and humiliation on us. Once instilled, these patterns dominate our emotional landscape; and take up residence in our relationships, our homes, our jobs, our creative experiences -- everywhere. Under such emotional conditions, the only acceptable way of life is to be stupid, fat and bored: nobody is threatened. We would in fact express ourselves, if not for the fear of threatening others; which is a ruse for refusing to grow up.

If the Western world is stuck on one issue, this is the one. We love to be told what to do; we love to have our decisions made for us; we love to be told what is right and wrong and who is honest and who is not and whether it’s okay that some golfer had a lot of girlfriends. We need to be told what is perfectly safe and how long we're going to live and to be angry about lead in Barbie dolls and that toxic dorms are safe; and as a result, this whole concept of becoming an adult is a little like reaching Valhalla. Where the heck is that? I think it’s in Connecticut.

We Americans in particular tend to spend our lives acting like little children, and it's time we grow up and claim some accountability for our actions, our choices and our destiny -- personal and collective. Part of that is admitting that we do indeed make choices, which is to say that we don't need our internalized parents, teachers and ministers to run our lives. We can do a lot to take care of ourselves; all the 'health care' in the world will not substitute for throwing out your microwave oven. We don't need content filters to tell us what is 'safe' to read.

At the same time, I think that our particular society needs to take more responsibility for our children: our refusal to admit to having temporary authority over them, when they need it most, is the same thing as letting our own lives run wild. We can twist our knickers all we like about the 'sanctity of marriage', but that has nothing at all to do with cultivating devotion to honest relationships. Which will help us and help our kids and help build our society.
Humans tend to be creatures guided by our emotions rather than by reason or intellect; and as such we are easily led around and told what to believe, based on what we think will make us feel better or 'be safer'. An eclipse of the Moon in Cancer, particularly opposite many significant planets -- Venus, the Sun, Pluto and Mercury to name four -- is about setting ourselves free from those emotional patterns, crossing the great divide to all those Capricorn planets, and taking on the mantle of authority over our own lives.
Somebody has to; it may as well be you.

Eric Francis

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