Libra New Moon, October 7, 2010
“Libra is the birth of the individual unit into the Greater Whole in which (s)he is thenceforth to operate as a cell. The fall equinox marks the decisive triumph of united action and social cooperation over individualistic self-expression and emotional self- centeredness. . . . The entire purpose is that of making more valid, more actual, more tangible the reality of human interchange, the reality of community, the reality of living together within an organic, stable, permanent structure of communal behavior.” Dane Rudhyar, The Pulse of Life
Libra’s scales: balance, equality, justice, partnership, harmony.
Libra’s Scales are the only inanimate symbol in the zodiac. Originally a symbol of the balance of the Sun between the upper and lower worlds and between light and darkness, the scales belonged to the goddess of justice, Astraea, who weighed the fate of mortals. We find ourselves at a fateful moment in our history – how will we weigh in? What does our collective fate hold in store for us?
If one person can change the course of history, what will you do to balance the Scales?
Libra is the sign that’s concerned with the structure of partnerships, the social forces that shape the rules of engagement between self and other. That’s why Saturn is exalted in Libra – it’s all about the structures (Saturn) that support relationships. Not the emotions of passion, but the rules of engagement, which include romance. After all, Libra is an air sign, so it’s about courtesy, the exchange of ideas, the steps that lead to union, the vital communication between two parties, the inevitable swings that occur when two people have to make compromises and create balance. Libra is concerned with developing a sense of social values and group obligations. It is the sign that asks the question: ‘How will my decision affect others?’
Libra’s scales were first concerned with fair exchange. How much was a chicken worth? Or a doctor’s checkup? What was the fair exchange for a pound of salt or a bolt of silk from the mysterious Orient? Libra’s scales balanced the ledgers, made sure that you got your money’s worth. How do we measure our worth against another’s? Do our talents and our dharma bring something of worth to the collective? These are also the concerns of Libra.
This Libra New Moon has both Saturn and Mercury conjunct in Libra, squaring Pluto and the Moon’s nodes in Capricorn and Cancer, challenging us to bring higher levels of personal integrity and social justice into our lives and our world. Mercury and Saturn in Libra want to open a discussion of our collective goals and ideals about equality between people and justice between corporations and individuals. How can we close the gap between what we say we believe in and what we actually do? How can we get over the fear of the ‘Other’ – both immigrants and people of other faiths – and learn to trust ourselves and them? The Other is the stranger, the one not like ourselves. How can we find the courage to stand and face the unknown Other?
We are all in this cultural crisis together, and until we learn to see with new eyes and hear with new ears, we can’t come up with new structures and rules for social engagement. Until we can learn to see the Other’s point of view, we can’t co-create a new cultural identity that isn’t based on patriarchal domination and rules, but on Libra’s dreams of courtesy, peace and harmony.
Now that Saturn is traveling through the sign of Libra, all of us will be posed questions about the realities (Saturn) of our relationships (Libra) and how we can achieve balance, fairness and harmony (Libra) in our lives and in the world. We can either be frustrated by what happens or we can take responsibility for what happens (both Saturn qualities). Saturn is the planet that symbolizes self-discipline and reality-testing through some form of limitation or frustration. In the sign of Libra, Saturn is concerned with partnerships and harmony, social justice, fairness and balance.
For the next two years all of us will be reality-testing how we deal with other people in our lives, as well as what talents and gifts we bring to the culture at this critical time in our history. With Saturn in the early degrees of Libra (responsible partnering with others) making connections to both Uranus in Aries (personal freedom) and Pluto in Capricorn (transforming our culture), we can be sure that what we accomplish in terms of personal relationships over the next two years will be important.
While those people who have their personal planets (Sun, Moon, Mercury, Venus, Mars) in Libra will be most affected, Saturn will also affect us on a generational level as it transits the slower moving outer planets in Libra in our birth charts. Since the early 1940s, the outer planets have all moved through the sign of Libra, slowly bringing about a change in our perception of relationships, fairness, equality, beauty and peace.
From October 1942 to August 1957, Neptune, the planet of spirituality, imagination and compassion, moved through Libra. From October 1968 to September 1975, Uranus, the planet of revolution, awakening and individuality, moved through Libra. From October 1971 to August 1984, Pluto, the planet of evolution, personal renewal and cultural transformation, moved through Libra. And Saturn itself was in Libra from August 1951 to October 1953, September 1980 to August 1983, and now again from November 2009 to October 2012.
As Saturn traverses the degrees of Libra, people who were born during these generations will be affected through these larger transformative energies. How each of us responds personally to this transit will shape our collective future. The Neptune in Libra baby boomers will be challenged to bring their spiritual imaginations into their relationships and perhaps their artistic vision will once again inspire the world just like in the 60s. The Uranus in Libra generation will be asked to think outside the box about relationships and continue to experiment with how to allow others their personal freedom while maintaining your own. The Pluto in Libra generation will be asked to totally transform our ideals and ideas about relationships from the bottom up and from the inside out. Saturn will force you to engage in these generational shifts of consciousness by bringing these issues up in those areas of your birth chart that is affected.
The real question is: Can we bring a real sense of presence into any exchange we have with an Other? Presence is the ability to be vulnerable enough to ‘be there now’, to listen with an inner ear of truth, to be available as a channel of peace and harmony and balance. We can also invoke the presence of Spirit within all our relationships. That divine Presence can be the balance point of everything we do with, for and to the Other. Saturn in Libra poses the question: How can we be a true Companion on the journey of Life?
The way we do this is through the fullness of Love.
Aphrodite/Venus is said to ‘rule’ Libra. That means Venus has a great affinity for the activities of Libra – connecting with the Other with total presence, awareness and acceptance. Aphrodite is the goddess of Love and Peace, Beauty and Truth. While Libra is an air (thinking) sign, Aphrodite is a goddess of subjective feelings who gives us a magnetic ability to attract others through our personal values and subjectively evaluate how they affect us. Venus is the great connector, the one who accepts the Other in all ways without losing a sense of Herself. In Christianity, it is Aphrodite’s sacred dove who became the Holy Spirit, and it is this holy spirit that is the sacred Wisdom (Love and Knowledge combined) that connects us in relationship.
The planet Venus is going retrograde the day after this new Moon, October 8th. You’ve seen Venus blazing in the Western night sky after sunset for most of the summer, a sign and a symbol of Beauty and Love. As the Evening Star, Venus is associated with wise and good counsel. Whenever a planet goes retrograde, it means that psychologically, the energy is retracing its steps back to the Sun to be renewed and restored in beauty and newness. When Venus is done retrograding, she will become the Morning Star, rising before the Sun, initiating a new connection to Spirit and to each other.
“The Mayans knew Morning Star Venus as Quetzalcoatl, the Feathered Serpent. The "flying of the Feathered Serpent" predicts a Renaissance period when America comes to full life and spiritual expression. When does the Feathered Serpent fly? When Venus rises before the Sun, in a special time that is unfolding in the next 24 months. Venus becomes the Morning Star again on November 3rd following a conjunction with the Sun on October 28th 2010. “ (For the rest of this interesting article on Venus retrograde and the Mayan Calendar, please see Steven Nelson’s article, The Mythic Times, which came to me as a newsletter. Please go to: The Mythic Times by Steve Nelson)
Because of Venus’ retrograde, it spends 5 months (from August 6, 2010 to January 7, 2011) rather than a month and a half in the signs of Libra and Scorpio, the two signs most concerned with dealing with the Other. As Venus turns around in Scorpio, she will ask us to reconsider values, recognize unconscious motives and face our Love and Power shadows. Now is the time to clear out old resentments, heal old emotional wounds and learn how to cooperate rather than dominate. As our wise Libra bard John Lennon sang, ‘All you need is Love’. That’s where the hard work comes in.
Venus turns retrograde at 14* Scorpio: Telephone linemen at work installing new connections. This is a cosmic gift to us – a rewiring of our ability to open ourselves to the Other. It is ‘the will to association and comprehension.’ Venus turns direct on November 18 at 28* Libra: A man becoming aware of spiritual forces surrounding and assisting him. This symbol is also a sign of blessing for us. Once we release our old pain around love and intimacy and chose love rather than fear, we will see how Aphrodite’s blessings and spiritual wisdom will assist us in connecting with others.
The Sabian Symbol for this new Moon at 15* Libra is: Circular paths. We all travel on circular paths, just as the cycle of the seasons or the Moon’s phases place us firmly within the context of a cyclical time reference. But circular paths can also be spiral paths, circling around at different levels, showing us our lives from different and yet the same vantage points. Walk your circular paths in peace and contemplation, allowing yourself to find a steady rhythm of in breath and out breath, activity and rest.
What seeds do you want to plant this new Moon? Don’t forget, these seeds are for the community to share!
As Autumn begins to take hold in the Northern Hemisphere, remember to be grateful for your harvests and for your communities!
Bright Blessings on us all!
Cathy Pagano, M.A.