The Want of Self-Reliance ~ January 23rd-29th, 2017

“Man is his own star; and the soul that can

Render an honest and a perfect man,

Commands all light, all influence, all fate;

Nothing to him falls early or too late.

Our acts our angels are, or good or ill,

Our fatal shadows that walk by us still.”

         – Epilogue to Beaumont and Fletcher’s Honest Man’s Fortune

Included at the opening of Ralph Waldo Emerson’s essay ‘Self-Reliance’ (1841)

The Sun is now in Aquarius and this week will bring the New Moon in this sign. Thus, the themes of Aquarius are to be meditated upon and better understood. Aquarius is always associated with humanitarian causes and innovative solutions to world-problems.

But Aquarius’ calling is derived from a condition that Ralph Waldo Emerson termed, “divine discontent”. Thus, the Aquarian life of genius follows the realization that there must be a conscientious separation between self and society, one that requires painful truths to become well known.

The truths that culture is not your friend and that:

“Society everywhere is in conspiracy against the manhood of every one of its members.”

And make no mistake, by manhood, Emerson meant womanhood too. Formal English from bygone eras meant nothing politically stratifying by the term manhood. It was an entirely acceptable generality that referred to all human-kind.

This week, the societies of the world are making a spectacle of their tightly bound disagreements and scandals. But this is nothing new. It is nothing new this century and it is nothing new this millennium.

“Society never advances. It recedes as fast on one side as it gains on the other.”

During Aquarius season, you may be afforded the clear and objective gaze that can admit this truth. With full knowledge of how cycles of history repeat themselves like clockwork, Aquarius asks that you learn how to resist conforming to these rhythms. As in music, repetition leads to variation. Aquarius is that chance for variation.

Whoso would be a man must be a nonconformist. He who would gather immortal palms must not be hindered by the name of goodness, but must explore if it be goodness. Nothing is at last sacred but the integrity of your own mind.

The path that leads away from the trappings of society is that of self-reliance. You might make some improvements to your own self-reliance this week.  Depending on how much you value real freedom, these motions towards mental, emotional and material self-reliance could be the greatest gift you have ever given yourself.

“the reliance on Property, including the reliance on governments which protect it, is the want of self-reliance.”

Politics in every nation on earth divide properties and then endlessly wage war over those divisions. But there is a deeper meaning to life than the social divisions of rights and properties. Once set upon the path of self-reliance, that deeper meaning can begin to speak to you.

Monday/Tuesday: Trust Thyself

Trust thyself: every heart vibrates to that iron string.

On Monday, Mercury in Capricorn will sextile Neptune in Pisces allowing the spirit of language to reveal itself to you with more depth. This influence might take you out of your mundane perceptions and bring you into deeper communion with the feelings which live inside of words.

Seeing live theatre would bring great pleasure on this day and reading poetry would be especially luxurious.

However you experience this influence at the beginning of the week, do what you can to cultivate a connection to your heart and its stirrings. A strong attunement to your own heart is the only path to self-reliance, for it is the unerring barometer of truth and the true north of your moral compass.

Wednesday/Thursday: Triumph of Principles

“Nothing can bring you peace but yourself. Nothing can bring you peace but the triumph of principles.”

The waning Moon will traverse the sign of Capricorn in the middle of the week, conjuncting Mercury. The dark Moon will conjunct Pluto on Thursday, making the middle of the week deeply introspective. In a moment of reflection such as this, you might find the truth in Emerson’s statements that nothing can bring you peace but yourself.

Rather than waiting for a revolution or a savior figure, look to yourself and your own principles for peace of mind and a sense of security in this world. There is no social organization that can offer this to you from the outside.

Friday/Saturday/Sunday: To Be Great Is To Be Misunderstood

Speak what you think now in hard words, and to-morrow speak what to-morrow thinks in hard words again, though it contradict every thing you said to-day. — ‘Ah, so you shall be sure to be misunderstood.’ — Is it so bad, then, to be misunderstood? Pythagoras was misunderstood, and Socrates, and Jesus, and Luther, and Copernicus, and Galileo, and Newton, and every pure and wise spirit that ever took flesh. To be great is to be misunderstood.”

The soul of Aquarius is willing to be misunderstood now in order to provide greater understanding for all later

On Friday, there will be a New Moon in Aquarius and with this comes a fresh cycle of emotional and creative energies for you to work with. This moment also marks the New Year in Chinese astrology, and thus the shift will be palpably felt by all who follow that rhythm. 

This New Moon has a lonely quality, one that has been purposefully removed from the fray of noise and distraction in order to find a deeper inner calling. The concurrent aspect with Venus in Pisces squaring Saturn in Sagittarius will lend a rather stoic quality to your relationships this weekend.

Enjoy the silence.

Do not allow your pause for reflection to be mistaken for a serious problem or a denial of truth. This is a perfect time to listen to the stirrings of your heart without drowning in the emotions that arise.

Enchant for self-reliance.

Make peace with your inner conflicts.

And go within to find the center of the maze. 

On Sunday, Mercury in Capricorn will conjunct Pluto, which is right back where the Mercury retrograde started last month. When the retrograde began with this Mercury/Pluto conjunction, a transformed vision of your own evolutionary purpose began to be summoned up from the depths. There is no doubt that during the retrograde, you felt haunted by the past and in denial of what you must become.

But now, with this aspect coming full circle, you may have a much better idea of what your work in this world is really all about. Speak what you think now in hard words. As an independent mind and an independent spirit, make way for your new life which rests upon this simple understanding that,

“What I must do is all that concerns me, not what the people think.”