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Sedona Conscious Magazine
The Astrology of June features Mercury, Venus, Saturn, and Neptune. Mercury resides in the sign of Cancer for the entire month of June – and also throughout July – because of its upcoming retrograde on June 26th, a week after the Summer Solstice of June 20th when the Sun itself enters Cancer. Thus, in the last week of June and for the first two thirds of July, and potentially into August, we will likely suffer the usual Mercury retrograde symptoms of mechanical breakdowns and mismatched communications, while our interior dialogue looms large and feels more profound.
This is the second such period in 2013. You might reflect back on whatever happened for you in late February. All three Mercury Retrograde periods this year, including the one coming up next October, are in fact in Water. Since Mercury symbolizes a mental energy, and the astrological element of Water represents the emotions, these times are edgy, as Mercury is not entirely at home there. You could look at this in two ways. On the one hand, everyone’s thoughts are confused and “at sea” so to speak; and on the other our emotional detectors are on alert and are more directly stimulated, improving the connections within ourselves between mind and heart.
Venus, too, is emphasized in June’s configurations. At the time of the June 8th New Moon and slightly before, Venus aligns into a very close Grand Trine with Saturn and Neptune. All through the first week of the month, in fact, either Mercury or Venus participates in combination with these outer planet energies, which are in and of themselves antithetical to one another. Saturn and Neptune’s close trine, lasting through to mid-August, does allow them to have a constructive dialogue with each other, and with these two inner planets that represent factors of mentality, communication, and relationship connection.
Each of us is therefore pulled in two very different directions all through the month, and especially in the early going. Saturn has the symbolism of restriction and limitation, serious purpose. Relationships partake of that energy, meaning that you could encounter obstacles, forcing you to evaluate the degree of serious purpose that you bring to each partnership encounter. Can you go the distance, make things work out in spite of everything?
Meanwhile, with Neptune in the mix, fantasy and idealization have their full sway, a feeling that no obstacles, or boundaries, even exist. We can dream, and perhaps deceptively imagine, all kinds of ideal circumstances that fly in the face of reality, or perhaps – by taking the other side into account of what we can visualize and plan for – we can come to ground our vision more concretely. I like Richard Wilbur’s poem, called Mind, which has the opening lines
Mind in its purest play is like some bat
We might think of this as the corrective influence of Saturn upon mental function. There are limits to thought, such as the paradigms of science, that constrain it: not everything is possible. On the other hand, just as the paradigm of Newtonian physics had to yield to the more complex vision of Einstein, and just as the current materialistic world view must eventually yield to a more spiritually inclusive one, there are those moments which could be characterized as Neptunian – escaping the boundaries of time and space.
His poem concludes
And has this simile a like perfection?
The mind is like a bat. Precisely. Save
Are you using knowledge, or is knowledge using you?
by don Miguel Ruiz Jr.
I began my apprenticeship into my family’s tradition in San Diego, California, when I was fourteen years old. My seventy-nine-year-old grandmother, Madre Sarita, was my teacher and the spiritual head of our family. She was a curandera, a faith healer who helped people in her small temple in Barrio Logan, a neighborhood in San Diego, with the power of her faith in God and love. Since my father was a medical doctor, the juxtaposition of the two forms of healing allowed me to see our tradition through different points of view.
Though she spoke no English, my grandmother gave sermons and lectures across the country. My apprenticeship began with translating my grandmother’s lectures from Spanish to English. For many years, I awkwardly stumbled over her words, and my grandmother would just look at me and laugh.
One day, she asked me if I knew why I stumbled. I had all sorts of answers: you are speaking too quickly, you don’t give me a chance to catch up, some words don’t have a direct translation. . . . She just looked at me silently for a few moments and then asked, “Are you using knowledge, or is knowledge using you?”
I looked at her blankly. She continued, “When you translate, you try to express my words through what you already know, what you think is true. You do not hear me; you hear yourself. Imagine doing the same thing every single moment in life. If you are looking through life and translating it as it goes along, you will miss out on living it. But if you learn to listen to life, you will always be able to express the words as they come. Your knowledge has to become a tool that you will use to guide you through life but that can also be put aside,. Do not let knowledge translate everything you experience.”
An excerpt from Your Ultimate Life Plan: How to Deeply Transform Your Everyday Experience and Create Changes That Last, by Dr. Jennifer Howard.
Living a More Conscious Life
One realizes that all of existence is a manifestation of consciousness; that ultimately everything is made out of consciousness.
When you’re living a more conscious life, you’re being with yourself and for yourself deeply, moment by moment. No matter how attractive quick and easy solutions seem, lasting change can’t happen in the time it takes to deliver a pizza. It takes time, attention, and commitment to address and heal the layers of who we are and grow in consciousness.
So, what is conscious living?
To be conscious means to observe what’s present, and implies being awake or awakening to your deeper truth, an inner realization, or circumstance. Living a conscious life means having the willingness, curiosity, and courage to stay present to your thoughts and feelings, to the meeting point of body, emotion, mind, and spirit. It means staying present to the impact you have on others and your environment, as well as the choices available to you. To live a conscious life—to be awake and aware—is to be gloriously alive!
We experience life in degrees. You can choose where to place your attention and intention, creating a life that feels better than it does now. You can grow, change, and deepen your ability to navigate life. You can expand and illuminate your experience of consciousness. You can mature toward greater integration and wholeness.
From the deepest sense of ourselves, our inner life longs to be experienced, understood, and validated. It’s rich with nuance and complexity, and meant to be sipped and savored. It’s not meant to be swallowed a week at a time, controlled by our past programming and endless “to do” lists. Slow down, take a deep breath, and truly feel life. Every moment, even a painful one, contains gifts of wisdom and joy if we’re willing to remain conscious.
Living consciously includes uncovering, grieving, and working through your historical childhood difficulties, along with the programming they created. It’s your job to return to your blocks, those stubborn problems that keep you from experiencing your wholeness and embracing your potentials. As you identify and heal them you create change. This opens the door to the emergence of your real self.
The Seasons of Self
April: Awakening to the Miraculous
by Lynn Woodland
The Spring Equinox, the official beginning of spring, happened in the third month of March, marking the point where, for the first time in six months, light and darkness are equal. We’ve entered the season where light is on the rise, growing stronger every day, and it can’t help but touch us all and get our energy moving, even if we don’t consider ourselves terribly attuned to nature, even if we never garden, even if it’s still Minnesota-cold out (as it is where I live). When light is rising, we know it in our bones. At the very least, we find we don’t need our Seasonal Affective Disorder lamps as often and notice our houseplants going wild. Every year this time, the presence of light awakens us in any number of obvious as well as deep, primal ways.
Of course, the true rebirth of light happened at the winter solstice, the darkest day of the year. Yet, winter light is a quiet power, both dormant and pregnant, like the time after conception but before birth. Spring, on the other hand, is for “hatching.” Easter brings with it a riot of candy eggs, baby animals, and Jesus rising from the dead, as Christian symbolism blends with earlier, earth-based, traditions of the solar sun being on the rise.
This energy of birth and beginnings is exciting, fresh, and a bit fragile. There’s an openness and child-like innocence to it; a sense of the world being new and that anything is possible. What better time to consciously cultivate this energy of excitement, fresh perspective, and willing suspension of disbelief, not as a naive first step on the way to a painful crash, but as a creative force? What better time to open ourselves to miracles?
If the pure presence of spring isn’t enough to open your jaded mind to the possibility of miracles, try wading into some of the mind-boggling findings of relativity theory and quantum physics over the last century. Science is now showing us a remarkable new definition of reality in which time and space aren’t fixed, matter isn’t solid and the very nature of matter changes according to the expectations of those observing it. We’re seeing that consciousness in and of itself has the power to affect the physical realm and that minds are joined beyond the limits of time and space. To quote one of the pioneers of quantum physics, Erwin Schrodinger, on the nature of consciousness, “the overall number of minds is just one.” (A good starter book on new science is Taking the Quantum Leap, by Fred Alan Wolf.)
But this article isn’t just about the mysteries of time, space and matter. It’s an opportunity to explore and experience these mysteries first hand. It’s an invitation to suspend disbelief, allow your mind to be boggled and take a leap out of the box of what you think you know because what follows is an exercise in miracle-making.