Among all the astrological symbols, the glyph for Sagittarius is the most straightforward. The archer’s arrow aimed upwards provides an immediate sense of direction, release, elevation and higher purpose. The arrow is also the terminal part of the glyph for Scorpio, and there is no way to understand Sagittarius without Scorpio, and vice versa.
The Sun enters Sagittarius on 21 November 2016 at 21.22 GMT.
This is the darkest time of the year, yet it is also the most gifted for it heralds the coming of the Winter Solstice, and the inevitable return of light. This, as I see it, escalates the trust in whatever is genuinely authentic and luminous in each one of us.
There is a question I ask myself in this season:
What has been truly good and luminous in my direct experience of life?
I underline “in my direct experience of life” because as I answer to this question I am aware of all the conditioning, belief systems and people who have repeatedly told me what must be good in life.
As a matter of fact, I realise that the greatest pain I have suffered has been the result of making massive and forlorn efforts in order to comply with what must be good, while denying my experience of what is good, and even fighting it as bad.
The main difficulty when I ask myself what has been truly good and luminous is to face the paradox that I get the most genuine answers connected with the darkest and least likely experiences. And it is only when I accept and embrace this darkness, with all its pain, that I find true light.
Sagittarius is a champion on focusing towards the good and luminous in life, an invincible winner, bound to triumphantly lead to the light in the climax of darkness.
This is the strength of Sagittarius, its light is not based upon the denial of darkness. As a matter of fact Sagittarius is the peak of darkness, it stems from total acceptance of pain and whatever is hidden, the complete incorporation of the Scorpio shadow.
“Facing the darkness, admitting the pain, allowing the pain to be pain, is never easy. This is why courage – big-heartedness – is the most essential virtue on the spiritual journey. But if we fail to let pain be pain – and our entire patriarchal culture refuses to let this happen – then pain will haunt us in nightmarish ways. We will become pain’s victims instead of the healers we might become. (Matthew Fox, born on the Winter Solstice, 21 December 1940, Sun in Sagittarius, Moon in Virgo)
After transiting and mastering the path of darkness, Sagittarius is challenged to find a target upon which to direct its powerful energies. Part of the challenge here is between objectives based upon second-hand beliefs, or conditionings, and those founded upon direct experience, what is truly good according to our direct experience of life.
The flight of the Sagittarius’s arrow illustrates the emergence from the darkness of the underworld and the greyness of the ordinary world, into the realms of inconceivable light that exist beyond. Yet, this journey is intimately based on the luminous acceptance of all aspects of life, low and high.
The arrow cannot ascend if pieces of the archer remain in the shadow. The archer needs to be whole and this can happen only if they can shed total light on who they are, if they own their luminous as well as shadow sides.
“There is no coming to consciousness without pain. People will do anything, no matter how absurd, to avoid facing their own soul. One does not become enlightened by imagining figures of light, but by making the darkness conscious”. (Carl Gustav Jung, Sun in Leo, Moon in Taurus, Ascendant in Aquarius)
Wholeness, unity is not about perfection, it is about acknowledging flaws as well as gifts, it is working with what is available, and allowing that to be part of the whole.
Sagittarius is the senior leader of the fiery signs. These signs represent the invigorating and vital power of the whole astrological circle. They embody pure energy and life force, capable of directly and instantly transforming whatever they touch.
The cardinal fire of Aries reveals the primal spark and the ignition power, fast and passionately burning itself so as to nourish the steady flames of the fixed fire of Leo, which is fire at its peak of grandiosity, visibility and strength.
The mutable fire of Sagittarius is the flame beneath the ashes, the glowing hot embers, which radiate huge amount of heat when the fire is extinguished, and yet can turn into flames with a sudden gust of air. Embers represent fire in its full maturity, glowing with a constant heat, ideal for roasting delicious food, as well as energising all that is good, luminous and beautiful.
“Please, Lord, teach us to laugh again, but God, don’t ever let us forget that we cried” (The 12 Step Prayer Book)
Wishing you peace, beauty and good will on this luminous holiday season!
P.S. We offer a wide range of workshops and events during this Advent and Holiday season, see https://astroshamanism.org/calendar/