Image: Gary Rosenberg
Creating Common Ground
Mercury, the planet of communication, is now settled in Libra until 27th September, having assisted us with tying up loose ends in Virgo. In the sign of balance ruled by Venus, Mercury seeks agreement and accord between people. Its passage through Libra offers a time to find common ground and shared perspectives. Contrary to popular belief, though, Libra isn’t only about peace and harmony, for the pursuit of both these outcomes is often by way of disagreement and dispute. We cannot know where our views and priorities coincide without discovering where they don’t! However, Mercury in Libra offers the opportunity to discuss and debate in a balanced and considered way, with space for disagreement as much as accord and with a win/win outcome as the goal.
At 5:08 pm GMT on 5th September Venus enters Virgo, creating a positive alliance with Mercury and offering assistance with this goal. Venus here is comfortable with detail, values careful attention and finds comfort in exactitude. This is a minimalist Venus who likes to pare things down to their very essence and avoid the ‘getting lost in too much detail’ which can be a challenge of working Virgoan energy. Whilst disinclined to indulge in her usual sensual pleasures, this Venus seeks the security of thoroughness and knows the value of ending the day with everything in its right place, not leaving unfinished business for tomorrow’s waking. In alliance with Mercury in Libra we have the ingredients for effective mediation, careful attention to the detail of each others’ needs and a willingness to serve the greater good rather than personal gain through creating positive outcomes which allow forward movement for both sides.
Between 4th and 7th September Mercury also aligns with Neptune, reminding us that compassion and acceptance are the building blocks of effective communication, especially when tensions are in the air and emotions aroused. No matter how deeply we disagree with someone or find their views and behaviours abhorrent, without even the slightest willingness to step into their shoes and see things through their eyes for a moment we cannot hope to bring about any change or progress. Polarities remain polarising when we refuse to step out of rigid positions to meet in the middle and discuss issues at hand with respect and consideration. Everyone of us is able to justify our position in some way or other. That’s how we maintain it! If we want to connect in a healing way with those who hold different views we must learn to explore their justifications too, along with the validity of our own.
None of this means accepting what we know to be wrong or failing to act when action is necessary. But effective communication can be the very thing which avoids the behaviours that cause harm. Thoughts are one thing, actions another, and if we can, each one of us, engage at the level of thought before they give birth to behaviour, we can contribute something positive and healing into the world through finding ways to meet each others’ needs without the aggression, disrespect and abuse that is so rife.
We see such dynamics played out globally in the form of wars, exploitation and abuse. It can feel overwhelming on such a vast scale and we may be left feeling impotent to effect change. But if we can come to understand something of the smaller disputes and arguments in our own lives we are already contributing the energy of acceptance, mutual-respect and peace to the collective field of awareness. If we want to change the world we must start right here with our own mind and heart and the behaviours to which they give birth. This month offers us an opportunity to understand something more of how to create common ground and embrace others with whom we would not ordinarily resonate. In doing so we may just discover that our own rigidity of view needs to become more malleable to create space for the many polarities which exists in this dualistic world and progress them all in the direction of peace.