The existence of planet Earth has never before been as threatened as during this period of time. Among all insecurities, one thing is certain however: if we are not able to conquer our egocentric mentality, not only humanity but probably all life on this Earth will be doomed.
From an individualistic to a transpersonal society:
It is Dane Rudhyar who, for example in his book: The Planetarization Of Consciousness, pointed out the necessity for change from a society centered around the individual to a transpersonal one. In this transpersonal society, people would no longer be guided by their ego, but by their Self: the essence of our consciousness that is part of the cosmic whole.
What is at stake is not some minor modification in the structures of society. What is at stake is a fundamental transformation which transcends local or national conditions and the normal behavior of greedy egocentric men hankering for power to fill their inner soul-emptiness. It is a change as radical as the change from one state of matter to the next in the scale of temperature - let us say, from the solid to the liquid state. (The Planetarization Of Consciousness, page 299)
Astrology has an important role to play in the realization of the necessary processes of change. According to Rudhyar, the birthchart contains the individual's "celestial name". In his book: The Astrological Houses he formulated this as follows:
The birthchart is seen as the formula structurally defining a man's "fundamental nature". It is a complex cosmic symbol - a word or logos revealing what the person is potentially. It is the individual person's "celestial name" and also a set of instructions on how a person can best actualize what at his birth was only pure potential - "seed potentiality". The birthchart is a mandala, a means to achieve an all-inclusive integration of the personality. (page 20)The astrologer has been given the important responsibility to explain to the client his "celestial name", to show possibilities how he can fulfill his destiny and come closer to his cosmic self. In this way, the astrologer contributes to the transition to a trans-personal society in which people can be their real self - a society without power conflicts, egotism and destruction, where people can live together in harmony and fulfill their destiny.
His books like The Astrology Of Transformation and The Galactic Dimension Of Astrology speak about such an approach to astrology; an astrology that stimulates the transformation of the individual and thus enables him to become part of a (future) transpersonal society:
The transpersonal astrologer is like a poet evoking the meaning of the whole chart as a symbol of the whole person and his or her potential of transformative unfoldment. (The Astrology of Transformation - page 119)This transformation should lead to a person who will: "come to a vivid, inescapable and total realization that the ego-Sun is essentially but one galactic star (which) constitutes essentially the first stage of the transformation of man, as in most cases he is today, into "more-than-man" - and symbolically into a galactic being, a "star". This transformation is necessary as the foundation of a "Galactic Revolution." (The Galactic Dimension of Astrology - page 21)
Apart from paying attention to the development and transformation of the client, the astrologer should also talk about his cosmic task:
(The chart) can be seen to represent the meaning and purpose with which the greater Whole, Humanity, has invested this birth - the dharma of the new human being. The term dharma simply defines what this new human being could do for Humanity of which he or she is a part, what Humanity expects of this individual and what it will help him or her to do, if help is possible. (The Astrology of Transformation - page 130/1)
Next to the task to stimulate individuals to live according to their real Self and to fulfill their cosmic destiny, it would be great if astrologers would listen to yet another appeal from Rudhyar. In The Planetarization of Consciousness Rudhyar formulates one of today's needs as follows:
At the threshold of the New Age, the essential task is to fecundate the collective unconscious of mankind with new Images relevant to the expectable global character of the future society. (page 14)Why shouldn't these new images come from astrologers? They are pre-eminently suited to insight in time-periods for example by practising mundane astrology, the astrology of world events, and have therefore a great instrument available to discover what is needed today. The astrologer observes the planets in their cycles and can advise humanity about the optimal use of these energies. In this respect, the conjunctions of the outer planets are important. The past has taught us that the energies of these conjunctions were not always creatively used and that often senseless wars and repressions were the result. The astrologer however has the know-how to show better ways and make a more positive use of these energies.
This is not only a possibility, but also a duty of the astrologer. I am convinced that we did not only receive our talents for ourselves, but also and especially, to use them in relation to others. If the cosmos has blessed us with the talent to interpret the cycles of the planets, then we have an obligation to use this talent for the benefit of the cosmic whole, especially in critical times like ours. Then we should not lose ourselves in side-issues, but focus on the essentials, the heart of our professional motivation.
Ideal and practice:
If we wish to be frontrunners in the necessary processes of renewal, should we then invest a lot of energy in recognition by the established sciences and authorities? Do we really have to strive for acceptance by those who sooner frustrate renewal than stimulate it? And what is the price we will have to pay for this?
At the moment both Uranus and Neptune, planets symbolizing astrology as well as spirituality, are in the sign Capricorn. I noticed that there are quite a few astrologers who strive for a good position in society, for recognition, and who pay a lot of attention to the business aspects of their profession. There is of course nothing against the "manifestation in matter" of an ideal, otherwise it remains a "pipedream" and will never be "grounded". This becomes a different picture, however, when the ideal fades in the background or disappears altogether.
Astrology is a profession with a special "calling" and a special responsibility - this should become apparent from the way it is practised. Much astrology is at the level of what Rudhyar sees as:
the broadly psychological type of astrology which merely describes their character and how they should handle their conflicts or opportunities for growth at a purely personal level - a kind of growth that would mainly make them feel happier, more confident and better able to function at home and in various social situations. (The Astrology of Transformation - page 116)After all, in these days with Uranus and Neptune in Capricorn, there is an urge to practice astrology in a so-called pragmatic, problem solving way, in the hope that the number of problems will diminish for the client. However, Rudhyar thinks and I fully agree, that such a happiness will turn out to be fake and that real happiness can only be found in the contact with your real Self and in living that way. Thus his arguments for transpersonal astrology:
The transpersonal astrologer tries to evoke (for the individual eager for selftranscendence), the possibility of using every opportunity, every tension, every crisis as means to gradually overcome the inertia of his or her past, of social and mental habits and prejudices and, above all, the resistance of the 'I' to changes that would undermine its centralizing and controlling authority. (The Astrology of Transformation - page 117)It is my experience that such an approach to astrology does not always lead to suggestions focussed on short term happiness. The individual often has to embark on a long and difficult journey to find his real Self and to overcome his (karmic) past. The reward, however, is real inner happiness, instead of only on the surface.
Perhaps with Uranus and Neptune in Capricorn, it is less fashionable to be idealistic (Neptune relates to fashion, which is nowadays very grounded and pragmatic). Especially in times like this, we should be careful that the essence, the central motivation of our astrological profession, as described by Rudhyar, does not get lost.
Mundane and personal astrology serving the transformationprocess:
The astrologer should be in the foreground, I think, of the renewal of society and stimulate the transformation of the individuals who are part of that society. The old ways have brought the earth to the brink of disaster. If we ignore Rudhyar's call, we will all go over the edge.
As astrologers we should trace the deeper sources of symptoms like pollution, violence and racism. We can point out how the (astrological) archetypes that correspond with these symptoms, can be used in a better way. These archetypes are after all neutral. We are the ones who decide whether they will work in a positive or negative way. This is the first part of our astrological work.
Another part consists of bringing the individual closer to his destiny by deciphering his "celestial name". That will lead to real happiness in life for the individual, so he can take the place in society that the cosmos meant for him. The more individuals follow this road, the more harmony will result in a society.
Let us honor Dane Rudhyar in a concrete way:
The inheritance of Dane Rudhyar can help to counteract the excesses of a too businesslike professionalism and too pragmatic approach. For me the idealism as formulated by Dane Rudhyar, is the central motive to be involved with astrology. If astrology was without any inspiration and had no "higher" purpose, I would stop immediately.
Astrology supplies sufficient means to astrologers to contribute to the transformation-processes in a concrete way. We owe it to the cosmos and life on earth to use these. Of course we do have a choice and can decide to hold on to the old and tried safe ways. That safety will however turn out to be fake, because it will eventually make us partly responsible for a dark future......a future that can be much brighter and more beautiful, if we all put our minds to it. This is for me the most important lesson that Rudhyar taught us.
Copyright 1996 Drs Roeland M. de Looff
5042 JA Tilburg
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