On Meeting Intensity With Gentleness
The lunar eclipse occurs in the 4th degree of Libra at 11:48 a.m. UT and augurs a time of high emotion and short tempers if we fail to remember that the urgency we currently feel is not to be trusted! With Saturn stationing retrograde in a few days’ time, we may already be feeling the burden of trying to remain positive when much around us seems to be spiralling into negativity. Previously buoyant attitudes may be waning, fears bubbling up and anxieties taking centre stage. If so, it’s time to cut ourselves and each other some slack; to accept that waves of energy come and go. Activity is followed by exhaustion, progress by inertia, excitement by quiet repose. If we try to push too hard against prevailing conditions now, desperate to maintain ‘progress’ no matter what, we may end up burning out and creating more stress rather than less. We cannot, at this point, extricate ourselves into ‘better times’ simply by sheer force of will. It is time to rest, stop and reflect. To allow to arise thoughts and feelings we may have been avoiding, for in doing so our inner world can begin a return to balance, rather than forcing it to run on empty because we’ve failed to refuel when necessary.
As eclipses go, and despite being far from total, this is a fairly intense one. But we can ease the load for ourselves and each other by choosing acceptance over judgement, love over fear, communication over withdrawal and hope over despair. We may be tempted to retreat into highly subjective positions now, assuming truth without putting assumptions to the test, forgetting that life from another person’s perspective can make equal sense even when their perspective is diametrically opposed to our own! Battles over who’s right and who’s wrong, who has the upper hand or moral high-ground, who did what to whom – none of these will help right now! It’s far more important to focus on what we share not what divides: the common ground that being human provides. The polarisation of individuals, systems of thought and belief, lifestyles and priorities, is becoming especially stark these days. This eclipse alerts us to the eventual destination if we continue further down that road – a place of conflict and hatred, power struggles and oppression. It urges us to let go the need to be right and embrace the possibilities inherent in deep listening and deep seeing: looking into our ‘enemy’ and recognising even the tiniest smidgen of shared humanity upon which can be built foundations for a new world.
The world as it stands is challenged by many opposing forces now. We feel them both personally and collectively, pushing against our own will, raising difficult questions, triggering issues we would rather avoid. How we manage our own inner conflicts largely dictates how we manage external ones. If we struggle with our own anger or hatred, telling ourselves we shouldn’t feel this way, we will struggle to respond effectively to the anger of others. If we fear our own power – preferring to see ourselves as victim rather than creator – we may too readily succumb to the power wielded by others, adopting their thoughts and priorities, behaviours and lifestyles without discerning the right path for us. If we refuse to acknowledge our own inner tyrant who demands its own way no matter what, we may project it onto the world around us, pointing the finger at those bullies out there without recognising their reflection within ourselves.
There is much to be seen and understood at this time. The floodgates holding back the unconscious are opened by this eclipse and we may feel overwhelmed by what comes pouring through. But remember, whatever it is, it is only ourselves. You and me in our fullness: good and bad, positive and negative, loving and hateful, accepting and impatient. We identify with those parts of ourselves we can live with and avoid the bits we can’t, when in fact we can live with all of it when wise discernment, gentle acceptance, compassion and understanding inform our attitude and shape our inner and outer relationships.
We are all in the same boat, we human beings, battered by the winds and torrential rain of emotion, warmed by the sunshine and life-giving showers of spirit. Uniquely separate at one level and united at another, this eclipse encourages us to reflect upon what divides us, what unites us and how we can move forward together in a life-affirming and positive way. It is time to encourage each other and ourselves. To hold up to others a mirror in which they can see their potential, not their failings: a child of god not an orphan of circumstance. If we each use this eclipse to do three things – allow ourselves to rest, forgive ourselves at least one ‘failing’ and encourage one other person to love who they are – we will have done it, and ourselves, very proud.
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