Devotion as the Evolutionary Impulse

Cosmophilia: You Belong Here for Capricorn

By Eric Francis

Capricorn Part One

Capricorn Part Two

Download mp3 archive.

Cosmophilia prologue

Cosmophilia houses

I speak of love that comes to mind:
The moon is faithful, although blind;
She moves in thought she cannot speak.
Perfect care has made her bleak.

I never dreamed the sea so deep,
The Earth so dark; so long my sleep,
I have become another child.
I wake to see the world go wild.

— Allen Ginsberg

Having Pluto in your sign is about living under the constant influence, and the necessity, of evolution. Not a day goes by when there is not some new challenge to meet, some aspect of existence calling on you to change, to grow, to rise to the occasion, to re-think something you thought was long settled.

Shoulders and Giants by Cameron Gray.

Shoulders and Giants by Cameron Gray.

With Pluto in your sign there is little you can take for granted. The forces for change are focused on you, and you know you must respond. Pluto plus Capricorn is an especially potent combination because your sign tends to describe what is the most stable, and what over time emerges as the most resistant to change. Add the unstoppable force Pluto and you have a meeting of two extraordinarily concentrated energies; the result can be unpredictable.

This transit has been developing since 2008, and it’s come to a peak the past three years. With the help of Uranus, which has been traveling along in a close 90-degree angle to Pluto, you’ve been challenged to get into the moment, because there’s been so much change, so many elements of your identity and your foundation shifting, that there is no other dimension of time that’s real. The past, once a dependable metric, is being rewritten with new interpretations day by day.

The future is something you know you can create, but you have to focus on your current circumstances and your environment to have any real potential for that.

This particular year there is a new message streaking across the sky as the Sun moves across your sign. The Sun is moving in a long conjunction to the brightest asteroid, Vesta — the goddess of the sacred flame, the goddess of hearth and home. Through the heart of your birthday season, Vesta and the Sun have been moving in this beautiful pattern, infusing the Sun with Vesta’s deepest quality — that of devotion. The Sun usually exists for its own sake; it’s the symbol of self-expressiveness, of glory, of reality that is centered on oneself. The Sun just burns and there is nothing anyone can do to help that, or to stop it from happening.

Vesta imbues the Sun with another kind of light, the light of an intentionally created source of energy. Unlike celestial fire, the fire of the hearth must be prepared in a specially designed place, lit by human hands, attended to and observed carefully. If it’s not, it might go out, or it might burn out of control. It’s this quality of care and devotion that Vesta represents.

In ancient Rome, the Vestal Virgins tended the ceremonial fires, which were maintained around the clock, perpetually. In exchange for this service, they were conferred with great dignity, particularly for women. But that degree of honor was small compensation for a humble task that had to be done consistently, as a cooperative gesture. The Vestals had one other pledge to keep — chastity, the breaking of which had grim consequences.

In practice, Vesta, the astrological factor, bestows the very discipline that you might think it demands. It can manifest as work ethic, persistence, leadership, consistency and a tireless quality. In a word, we are talking about devotion — the real thing, the kind that comes from inside; the kind that is its own motive and its own reward.

This is a radical change from the usual values of the world — the carrot and the stick, the end justifies the means, I’ll be a doctor because they make a lot of money, I want to be famous for nothing, someone else will take care of me — all that nonsense that has way too much cultural sanction at the moment.

This year it is Vesta that will be your guide to implementing the changes Pluto is designing for you. You will thrive on the steady pace this influence sets for you; the foresight; the presence of mind. It will be that same property that guides you through the profound changes in the world, whether you’re a witness, one who is affected or a direct participant. Pluto for its part is saying step up to direct participation, but that’s not a small matter; you must bring your total presence.

To the extent that Uranus in Aries, your 4th house (home base, family of origin, security), is freeing you from an identity that had been defined in the context of your childhood home, it will be Vesta that holds you to the truth of who you are outside of that no longer applicable concept of who you were; to the truth of who you are becoming. You may not have a clear idea about the end of that journey; under forces this potent, how could you? But the process is more important than the destination, and Vesta is all about process.

Both Pluto and Vesta have a do-or-die quality to them, and you’ll need to be mindful of that. Your situation is not exactly that serious, though at times it may feel that way, and there are rare instances where you will need to make decisions that have far-reaching implications.

The real beauty of the moment is that you are being invited to participate in the actual changes the world is going through. You get to contribute, rather than being a spectator. Pluto’s contact with your sign indicates a far wider scale of involvement than you may have ever experienced, and that scale is likely to increase over the next few years, peaking with the absolutely extraordinary events of 2020.

Think of, and treat, and live the reality of, everything you’re doing now as a form of preparation for that time. Yet this is not a phase of passive ‘getting ready’ in some conceptual sense. It is experience you need, and experience I suggest you cultivate with a whole heart. Remember that experience can only be qualified by other experience. You must know the rules and be aware that there are always exceptions. You will need to be exceptional and know that there are codes you must live by.

Despite this you have a rather wide berth for the choices you make. Vesta defines space, and does so effectively. Within that defined space you have tremendous freedom, and in truth to get the full value of these transits, you must express that freedom in meaningful ways. One role of Pluto is to help you clear out what you don’t need, what no longer serves you, what is no longer valid.

Under the guidance of Vesta, the work of the Plutonian demolition crew will be a lot more meaningful. There is one additional factor worth mentioning, regarding Pluto. Astronomers will be getting their first clear photos of this mysterious planetary system over the next six months. Up until now, Earth-based or orbiting telescopes have only given us fuzzy photos.

When we see those photos, the mystery of Pluto, and its action in our lives, will unfold in a new way. I believe we’ve largely been trying to discern Pluto in blurry form, not knowing what it’s really about. There is, I believe, a relationship between the visual impression of this system (so far known to contain six individual objects orbiting one common point in space) and how Pluto will function in our consciousness. I would propose that your extended Pluto transit will take on several new dimensions of meaning as these photos emerge.

Saturn in Sagittarius: A Personal Cosmology

Apropos of freedom, that’s a factor often associated with the sign Sagittarius. You have Sagittarius in your 12th house, which implies a paradox. The 12th can come with a sense of confinement. Sagittarius is the sign of absolute expansion.

There are a diversity of results possible. One is a sense of being constrained, where you want freedom the most. This quality of Capricorn is often ascribed to its sense of duty and respect for tradition, which may come as the sensation that the ‘great expanses’ of life are not attainable (though few people feel they are).

Another potential is the sensation of containing a vast space within yourself, a kind of inner cosmos. Everyone contains this inner cosmos, though for you it has the potential to manifest in a bold, vivid way. Any need you may have to conform to some outer reality will be obviated by the strength of your inner awareness. That awareness opens up a dimension that goes beyond the ‘form’ of reality, and which you can use to journey — or travel in consciousness — anywhere you want to go. This is a subtle state of mind that you’re more likely to notice if you pay attention. If you distract yourself on the outer forms, if you get hung up on religion instead of the inner life of spirit that you contain; if you get hung up on laws rather than on ordinary civility; you might miss something spectacular.

Pluto, by the way, is assisting by making sure you really understand that form is temporary. Now, as for your Saturn transit.

In late 2014, Saturn ingressed Sagittarius and began a journey across your 12th house. Saturn is your native planet, the traditional ruler of Capricorn. This transit is taking you on a journey inside yourself. While there will be many factors vying for your attention in your outer environment, your inner world will be making the most compelling case for what matters the most.

Saturn will give some sense of form to what you suspect is within you; it will make sure you have a clear point of inner orientation. People often experience a Saturn 12th transit as isolating or lonely; don’t fall for that. Your inner world is quite alive, and you are still free to explore your outer environment. It’s just that many people you encounter won’t necessarily understand what your inner trip is really about. Note: this feeling can intensify as your spiritual development progresses.

Saturn and Jupiter are miniature solar systems. Saturn currently has 62 known natural satellites. There are innumerable smaller ones, not named, designated or even known about, floating in the rings and elsewhere. I believe most older descriptions of Saturn are out of touch with natural reality. It’s also worth mentioning that while Saturn is considered the lord of restraint and structure, and Jupiter is considered the lord of expansion, Jupiter is denser than Saturn.

The old delineations of these planets still work on one dimension. They are kind of like the “old physics” as opposed to the “new physics.” For example, the delineation of Saturn was created in the days of monarchy, when people had nearly no personal volition or social mobility. Yet these old delineations will hold unless we create new ones, and this transit is inviting you to do that.

We can carry forward the “structure” element of Saturn and relate it to the cosmic order of Sagittarius in the 12th house. This is an invitation to understand your concept of existence. It’s also an invitation to shift from defining your concept of life around what is physically tangible and re-orient on what you discover to be true within yourself. This counts for all manner of spiritual teachings and traditions.

Clearly there is value in learning and experimenting with tradition, and with traditional teachings. Yet to make those meaningful you must adapt and apply them to your own experience. All of those traditions and teachings mean nothing if not to point you inward. Well, they might mean something — specifically, social control. So you could say that unless spiritual teachings are fully integrated and recreated as your own, they’re likely to serve as social control devices. This is particularly true of religious teachings that were heaped on you as a child. People can maintain rather incredible attachments to comic-book forms of religion that are little other than distortions and distractions. Everything in your charts is saying it’s time to get past the propaganda level of existence — whether that involves religion, spirituality, politics, government, family — the lot of it.

I often talk about internalizing the Saturn principle and becoming your own authority. There are few better illustrations of this than Saturn in Sagittarius in the 12th house.

Beyond Purity — Knowledge in Context

While we’re on the hunt for propaganda, let’s focus on purity for a moment. The concept “pure,” especially applied to sex or sexuality, is one of the most effective mind control viruses ever released into consciousness. Basically, the notion of pure keeps people reaching for something they cannot attain, mainly because they are perceiving it with the mind, which is not exactly pure; mind is complex and integrated and chaotic and occasionally clear — but it’s not pure.

The theme here is Virgo on the 9th house, another image of your connection to the cosmos. Virgo often implies purity, though really what happens is that the contradiction of “purity when there really is no such thing” is actually what manifests — as conflict. Note that this conflict serves as a social control device; often the supposed solution is presented as something outside yourself, such as the Virgin Mary, science or the perfect, seamless, all-inclusive philosophy.

In your quest for knowledge, I suggest you use a diversity of assessment tools, such as “fits the known facts,” “seems to be logical,” “needs additional details,” “confirms what I’ve heard previously,” “good point,” “true enough,” “this seems like bullshit,” “I recognize the ridiculous logic underneath that story,” “needs additional verification,” “the facts conflict,” “my intuition is not going along with this one,” “I’ve looked into this as thoroughly as I can and I’m still not clear,” etc. You can come up with a few yourself. All of these are antidotes to the dogma of supposed purity, of absolute right and wrong. In short, they make room for context.

There are factors present suggesting that you might have a tendency to narrow your approach rather than to widen it — which may be an effort to balance mental overload. The axis in your chart I’m describing here is Pisces-Virgo — which for you is the 3rd house/9th house axis. That’s the one about communication, and its associated technologies. It includes such topics as research, writing, publishing, various devices used to accomplish these tasks, the Internet, and your relationship to these things.

Your astrology describes a kind of extreme polarity. Pisces, your 3rd house — usually the more accessible of the pair — is in a very, very Piscean state right now. Even under ‘typical’ circumstances, having Pisces in the 3rd house of cognition, writing and basic mental functions requires a high level of intuition. You may not feel like you ever fully understand something, but you might grasp its essence. You need pictures to go with words to help you clarify concepts. Even music helps you think more clearly than you would otherwise.

Now, however, planets are collecting in this house, which is at once increasing the volume of mental information, perhaps to the point of being overwhelmed. Some factors are saying space out and let it happen; others are reminding you that you actually have to focus, and to learn things thoroughly. Dipping in and out of books is unlikely to be helpful. You need to understand whole ideas, in context. You’re being called on to apply some actual discipline to your thought process, your study, your speech and your writing.

At times this may feel like you’re sticking a spoon into a waterfall; that’s how it is when you approach an actual body of knowledge with sincerity. You may not feel ready, though you’re a lot readier than you think. Whatever calling you’re following goes back a long way, and started coming into focus around 2009 or 2010 as Chiron began its trip across Pisces. Whatever the beginning of that transit represented, it is likely to have felt like a spiritual calling, awakening or reality check.

Then came Neptune, and now centaur Nessus is arriving. And Chiron for its part is making a conjunction soon to a very slow-moving point that’s been working its way through Pisces for the past 10 years. All of that adds up to a lot of mental activity that feels, and in truth is, coming in over a creative and intuitive frequency — that is fully activated Pisces.

On the other end of the dial is Virgo, which is like a mental-emotional-intuitive processor. Virgo’s main visitor right now is this thing called Transpluto. If Virgo can have an issue with narrowness, Transpluto pushes that to the next level. Virgo + Transpluto is about over-focus, or a narrowing down of the possibilities — on all levels. The narrowing may come as dogmatic thinking, adhering to a doctrine, or needing scientific proof.

Regarding the latter category, I assure you that no matter of love, creativity, intuition or beauty will be subject to being proven by science, or even by philosophy. Theory and reality do not always match, and there is rarely a perfect theory to explain what you experience or perceive. If there is one grand lesson to these transits, I would say that’s the baby. The sources of creativity and faith are not subject to proof or disproof by philosophy, science or any other form of high theory. And you’re running quite a bit of creativity and faith right now — perhaps more than you ever have. You might want to skip the “prove it to me” thing. However, observing the world for examples, confirmation, parallel realities, places to explore, ways to apply what you’re learning — well, all of that counts for a lot.

What Virgo is indeed encouraging you to do is to integrate what you’re learning. That means seeing knowledge about a subject in relationship to other subjects. It means seeing things you learn in context. This is, by the way, the exact opposite direction of where information and data processing are headed, at least as experienced by ordinary people. What we are experiencing is an onslaught of disjointed, disassembled information that does not often add up to knowledge.

Part of what you’re doing is cultivating the context tools to reverse that trend, especially within your own mental environment — that is, how you think and how you share the results of your thoughts.

This may feel like learning to learn all over again; that sounds about right. It’s especially necessary when so much of your mission involves, or will soon involve, some mode of teaching. Then you must learn how to learn every day.

Speaking of — one last point on the 3rd/9th discussion. Pay attention to how you know what you know. Any time you think you know something, I suggest you be able to account for how you found it out. In publishing this is called fact-checking. Fact-checking is not proof. It doesn’t mean you’re right. What it means is you are keeping track of where your information comes from. It’s a fine tool on the way to annihilating assumptions, bad guessing, rumors and inference. It will stoke your curiosity and you may even find yourself looking up words you’ve used for years, only to discover you had no idea what they really meant.

A Bit About Money

Capricorn is often described as ambitious, a climber, one bent on achievement — though this belies a deeper point, which is that you have a knack for sharing resources and creating wealth in collaboration with others.

True, what amounts to a lack of leadership and vision in the world requires leaders, who are people with ideas, and in that respect you are better advised to turn on the charm than the ambition. Charm means treating people well, holding them as if on level ground, and making sure your presentation is always impeccable.

What you want to impart is value and the feeling of value in everything you do. The way you do that is beauty — and cooperation.

You’re in an excellent position to benefit on mutual efforts. This does not necessarily imply a business partner (that’s a far bigger decision than most people realize), but it does imply exchange, trade, commerce and to some degree the pooling of resources to make something happen.

In assessing trading partners, beware of one thing: jealousy. That one emotion has done more to disrupt coordinated efforts than just about any other. Okay, a second quality to be cautious of: self-importance. That’s the feeling you get when someone is presenting themselves as a few sizes bigger than they are. You don’t need Mother Teresa, but what you want is someone who understands the scale they’re working on, and has a sense of the boundaries of their talents and intelligence.

Later in the year, business takes on an international flavor. Keep an eye out for that. It may not be in your plans, though the best business ideas often are not.

Of Love, Depth and Dignity

One last note — about personal relationships. I don’t think there are any formulas for love — it would be nice if there were. However, your charts are offering some guidance for you, and it seems sensible enough.

You are a person who values your dignity, and this needs to reflect itself in your relationships. By that I mean it’s essential that you choose self-respecting people to relate to, and with. I recognize that they don’t grow on trees. The world is in some real pain where self-esteem is concerned, and we all must keep an eye on our own.

You also need to keep an eye on that of the people who want to be close to you. If you can find people who are both caring and who also can walk straight and tall, you’ll find more harmonious opportunities to relate to others. It’s common ground that you simply must share with others for there to be real trust. People whose self-esteem is in a constant state of decay are very hard on the people around them, and you will be particularly sensitive to this.

I mentioned self-importance in the previous section — that is the feeling you want to be leery of, as it’s a kind of compensatory behavior that conceals a deeper problem. It’s also annoying. Bold determination is one thing. An inflated sense of one’s own power or virtue is another. Just gently go around these people when you meet them; there are many, and I don’t think they will have much to offer in the way of personal intimacy.

There’s one last factor you need in your relationships: that is depth. By that I mean people who are capable of going below the surface level of their minds. I know I’m setting what seems like a ridiculous standard, but think of it this way: if you’re learning one thing, it’s to have no fear about your own inner existence. That’s no longer a luxury; it’s a necessity, and a prerequisite for many future journeys. Anyone who takes a journey with you, whether to the mall or to Tokyo, is going to engage with your inner trip and hence with their own. Choose wisely from among those who actually have an inner life; who know they exist.

You know you do.


Capricorn chart.

Capricorn chart.

Capricorn sketch.

Capricorn sketch.

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2 Responses to Devotion as the Evolutionary Impulse

  1. Eric,
    I have just finished listening to Capricorn for a third time and read the written just now. I am a Cap sun, Pisces rising and Pisces moon for context here.
    Your recap of what has gone on for Cap suns since 2008-09 was accurate for me right down to the March 2011 timeframe where you said that my family structure underwent a major transformation. Over these last 6 years, my life has indeed been completely restructured. Marriage ended,(one that gave me amazing security, but not the type of intimacy I knew I needed), jobs started and ended (I quit, twice), my body changed, my home changed (several times)-moved from Canada to Australia, started a new relationship (going great BTW), started my blog in 2009, started painting and doing photography again after many years of stagnation, and have been on an intense inner journey the entire time and am still on that one. I have left many people and places behind. In other words, I have utterly shattered the status quo in my life and been “living on the edge”. And so, as you can see, everything you said in this reading was completely and absolutely spot-on for me. I have followed other astrologers, had readings done and still keep one in particular as my personal astrologer, but no one, even her, as much as I love her has been able to better articulate the past, present and future possibilities as clearly as you have. I am astounded by your passion and talent. You have a gift. Thank you for sharing it with me. It has been a tremendous help to me over these last few years of very difficult decisions and changes.

  2. Susan Marie says:

    Right on mark, listened to PT I and onto the rest. Makes absolute sense to me in numerous ways! Excellent.

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