Dear Friend and Reader:
We are now in the two-day zone before an eclipse of the Moon in Aquarius. This is a critical moment for navigating the turns of our lives; a kind of break-free point; a place of resolution and continuation. Therefore, we need to move gently through this whole week. This is going to take some faith. Plenty has been begun that is not resolved; there is still plenty of doubt, uncertainty and insecurity in the air; and the sequence of events this summer has many of us feeling pretty exhausted.
This is the fourth lunation of summer; they have all been spectacular (a polite way of saying rather intense and demanding, coming with all kinds of changes), and we are feeling it. We began with the New Moon in early Cancer on the solstice; followed by an eclipse of the Moon in Capricorn; followed by a total solar eclipse in the last degree of Cancer; now followed by an eclipse of the Moon in mid-Aquarius.
In terms of the cycle of the year, this eclipse occurs with the Sun near the midpoint of a fixed sign; In Leo, this is a cross-quarter day called Lammas or Lughnasadh. The ‘first harvest’ or ‘second planting’ holiday is celebrated some time the first week of August, depending on the local traditions (sometimes Aug. 1 and sometimes Aug. 5). As an astrologer I prefer to use the crossing of the midpoint of the fixed signs, combined with the nearest major lunation; with a Full Moon on the 5th, that rings the bell.
Lammas links into the three other cross-quarter days — Imbolc or Candlemas in early February (the midwinter holiday; in the modern calendar, Ground Hog Day or Valentine’s Day), followed by Beltane in early May (midspring holiday; May Day in many societies), followed by Lammas (midsummer holiday); followed by Sahwen, Samhain or Halloween (Days of the Dead; All Saint’s Day; All Soul’s Day; Pagan New Year). Each of these days falls at the midpoint between a solstice and an equinox.
Under this calendar structure, which is determined by the position of the Sun in relationship to the tropics, there are eight, six-week seasons each year. They are all tangible turning points, and they all relate to the Aries Point. The Aries Point, or the first degree of Aries, seems to respond most vividly to aspects related to the square (90-degree relationships). This includes the semi-square (45 degrees) and the sesquisquare (135 degrees). All of the quarter-days (solstices and equinoxes) and cross-quarter days therefore talk to the Aries Point and take us into that territory where collective events cross over with personal events.
Eclipses act much the same way. Energetically, the lunar nodes have that one particular thing in common with the Aries Point: being deeply personal and acting in way that is collective. If you’re looking at a chart and trying to figure out how someone got to have so much influence or became so well known, but has nothing much going on in the 10th house, look at the lunar nodes and the condition of their ruling planets. The nodes, though, have many other properties that can be a little difficult to grasp, but bear in mind that they point to a place near where an eclipse will occur. Eclipses follow the lunar nodes. The nodes have many of the properties of eclipses: but they are like a standing wave, rather than a big crashing wave.
Wednesday’s eclipse is conjunct Nessus, though what I missed and what Tracy point out is that it’s also conjunct Psyche. She had a gander through her charts files and the only chart she could come up with that had Moon, Nessus and Psyche was that of George Lucas.
I know this chart. I once wrote a book chapter about it, called ‘The Moon is a Silver Screen’. Lucas has all of his natal planets below the horizon, and his Moon gleaming at the top of his chart like a projection screen. And it’s conjunct Nessus and Psyche, which tells you a bit about the psychology behind his screenplays.
And it may tell us about him: remember that he is the biggest director, one with enormous impact, who refused to pander to Hollywood. Instead he started his own Hollywood up in the San Francisco area, revolutionizing technical filmmaking and special effects — very much apropos of that Moon position, in Aquarius. The thing to remember is that while his films are technically revolutionary, they lack nothing for psychological and spiritual substance. His characters are unforgettable. So much for the Aquarius Moon being shallow.
This is an eclipse, however, not just the Moon. An eclipse peels back the veils and reveals what is underneath.
I would like to focus this week on two themes associated with the eclipse: the first is our use of technology as a relational forum; and the ways in which we are influenced by this thing that used to be called peer pressure. Notably much of that pressure is coming from the mass use of technology, which is in turn influencing our relationships, both the ‘social’ kind and the ‘intimate’ kind.
Let’s briefly consider some ideas about the Internet as a forum for relationships. I have said a few times that the Internet is a metaphor for a psychic field that is opening up. It is literally a new dimension of consciousness that did not exist when we were born. It bears striking similarities to the astral, mental and causal planes, except that it lends itself to documentation, to repeat visits to the same place, and we can quickly ground certain events that occur there (such as meeting people) in 3D. While this is less easy only using purely psychic portals, we face some of the same issues getting things to stick; working the Internet well takes discipline, sensitivity and an astonishing degree of creativity.
The Net offers us something else: a place to experiment; with one another, with our fantasies; with our ideas; and with relationships that presumably have a lesser degree of commitment than those conducted in physical space and time. We need this place to experiment, particularly with sexuality. And I would add, we need this dearly.
Most of what you hear is critique: how much porn there В is; how addicted people are to the Net; how it’s used as a substitute for reality; and so on. I think of it more as a dynamic fantasy world where anything is possible, within the basic guidelines of that particular dimension. You cannot physically touch someone on the Internet but you can certainly touch them mentally or emotionally; and conveying words, sounds and images is more powerful than most people imagine.
Most of us need exchanges in this dimension as much as we need to be touched and held; as much as we need to feed one another healthy food. The Internet offers us a way out of our tight little reality boxes and into a world where any idea is up for consideration. We are able to experiment with who we are, and stretch into self-concepts that might indeed help point the way to Self.
It is true that this power is rarely used to its full extent or directed in truly creative directions — but we’re gradually making progress. The thing we know about the Net is that it responds to our imagination. Most of it does not simply come at us; we have to drive it like a car in order to get anywhere. If we have the focus and resources to create a forum for ourselves, we can actually reach people and explore.
I for one am an advocate of the Net as a sexual fantasyland; as a vast hall of mirrors where we can indeed speak our desires and be heard. The Net offers safety: we don’t need to touch or physically show up. It is dangerous: attachments can form, and our investment in those contacts can be overdone and result in real pain.
For sure, it’s a space where we can ‘put ourselves out there’ and see what, or who, comes back. I suggest we honor this power of communication and contact before we critique it.
As for where to explore: I am a great fan of the site Solotouch. It is dynamic site in that the whole site is reader-written, and there are about 50,000 posts to read. What is fact and what is fantasy is for you to decide. A site in Australia called Beautiful Agony offers much of the same, only it’s visual and auditory: you see only the person’s face. You can actually contribute one of your own orgasms to the project. There are many sample videos and a couple of introductory ones, though I would put in a bid for getting a subscription for at least one month, so that you can explore the great diversity of pleasure and orgasm.
Is it real or is it fantasy?
Yours and truly,