Holidays

Happy Samhain/Hallowe’en/Day of the Dead!

Those who decry Hallowe’en as a pagan holiday are, of course, correct!  In medieval Europe the pagan (country) people celebrated the the midpoint of the fixed signs as periods of power.  These times correspond to the fixed signs of Aquarius (Brigid in February), Taurus (Beltane in May), Leo (Lugh in August) and Samhain (pronounced Sow’en) in November for Scorpio.  These times exactly between the solstices and equinoxes, at the 15% point of the fixed signs, and are called the “cross-quarter” days.
At Samhain it is said that the veils between the worlds grow thin, and it becomes easier to communicate with the souls of loved ones who have passed on.  They are also more easily able to offer advice, and divination is a key part of Samhain festivals even today.  Samhain marks the beginning of the dark half of the year, after the balance of light and dark at the equinox.
The actual festival of Samhain this year is November 7th because this is when the Sun reaches 15 degrees Scorpio.  The festival of Hallowe’en (All Hallows Eve) corresponds to All Saints Day in the Catholic church which celebrates the dead, but only those who have been beatified.  The rest of the dead are celebrated on All Souls Day on November 2.
In Latin America there is a similar festival called the Day of the Dead, or Dia de los Muertos which corresponds to the Catholic festivals.  Similar festivals are held in Spain and in Brazil, and presumably derived from the adaptation by the Catholic Church of the Samhain festival.
Astrologically, the entry of the Sun into Scorpio in the northern hemispheres marks the return of the dark time, where we are drawn into the darkness of our own psyche to […]

By | 2018-07-18T12:54:24+00:00 October 31st, 2015|Holidays|0 Comments

Cross-Quarter Beltane power festival is May 5th

Astrological BeltaneWhile many of your friends may be celebrating Beltane on May 1st as May Day, the actual Beltane festival is one of the “cross-quarter” days – the midpoint between the Equinoxes and Solstices. These cross-quarter days of the ancient Celtic Wheel of the Year actually occur at the 15 degree point of the fixed signs of Taurus, Leo, Scorpio and Aquarius and are thought to be gates of power.
While many of your friends may be celebrating Beltane on May 1st as May Day, the actual Beltane festival is one of the “cross-quarter” days – the midpoint between the Equinoxes and Solstices. These cross-quarter days of the ancient Celtic Wheel of the Year actually occur at the 15 degree point of the fixed signs of Taurus, Leo, Scorpio and Aquarius and are thought to be gates of power and indeed these fixed signs do contain a great deal of power.
The fixed signs are themselves gates of power – groundbreaking astrologer called the fixed signs “the Signs through which power is released.” He went on to say that power is energy ready for purposeful use through instrumentalities prepared for it.” In the Wheel of the Year, the Equinoxes and Solstices the Sun enters the first degree, the most potent, of the dynamic and initiatory signs that we call the “Cardinal” signs (Aries, Libra, Capricorn, Cancer). That energy needs to be contained and grounded for purposeful use through the “Fixed” signs (Taurus, Scorpio, Aquarius, Leo), and the midpoint of the fixed signs is where we find these cross-quarter days of magic and power. The energy is disseminated and completed in the mutable signs (Gemini, Sagittarius, Pisces, Virgo) in preparation for […]

By | 2015-05-03T07:00:00+00:00 May 3rd, 2015|Holidays|1 Comment

Summer Solstice: The Turning of the Wheel

Summer Solstice 2014

While custom dictates the Northern Hemisphere celebration of the Summer Solstice and the first day of Summer on June 21st, the use of the tropical zodiac places the entry of the Sun into the sign of Cancer on the longest day of the year.

Cancer is one of the “cardinal” signs – the signs that are directed towards action and leadership.  Each of the cardinal signs marks the turning of the seasons: from the Summer in Cancer we move into the Autumn of Libra, followed by the Winter of Capricorn and the Spring in Aries.

During the solstice the Sun appears to stand still as it beams its nourishing light across the northern Hemisphere.  The energy of the Sun feeds us and is crucial for our vitality, and the Summer Solstice offers a peak of creative potential.

The chart for the Solstice can reveal a great deal about the next three months, and this year the Solstice chart is marked by Uranus, Pluto and Mars, locked tightly in an energetic alignment that continues to foster the completion of a breakdown of the old order (Pluto in Capricorn) and the beginning of something entirely new in its place (Uranus in Aries), facilitated/aggravated by Mars in Libra.  (You can learn more about the Uranus/Pluto square in the sidebar of this blog.)

The sign Cancer is ruled by the Moon, and the Solstice Ruler adds its own mark on the Summer Solstice.  This year the Solstice Ruler is exactly conjunct the South Lunar Node, the point marking the past, suggesting that unresolved issues are likely to take center stage now.  With Mercury retrograde as well as several other planets (see […]

By | 2018-07-15T10:02:08+00:00 June 21st, 2014|Holidays|6 Comments

Happy Resurrection Holiday

dying resurrected godThis is a repost from 2010.  You might also enjoy my podcast

I have always found it interesting that the timing Christian holiday of Easter is based on the lunar cycle and the Spring Equinox.  The holiday that the Christian world celebrates as Easter retains much of its pagan roots as a fertility festival and a time of balance as the days and nights (in the northern hemispheres) are of equal length. Even the name “Easter” is taken from the Saxon fertility goddess Ostara or Eostre, who is related to Astarte in ancient Babylon and Ashtoreth in ancient Israel.  And the Easter bunny is, of course, an old pagan symbol of fertility.

The resurrection story of Jesus is virtually identical to the tale of the resurrection of the Phrygian god Attis who preceded him:  According to Gerald Berry’s Religions of the World: The Record of Man’s Religious Faiths Primitive rites, Buddhism, Judaism, Islam, Christianity and others, written in 1965, “About 200 B.C. mystery cults began to appear in Rome just as they had earlier in Greece. Most notable was the Cybele cult centered on Vatican hill …Associated with the Cybele cult was that of her lover, Attis (the older Tammuz, Osiris, Dionysus, or Orpheus under a new name). He was a god of ever-reviving vegetation. Born of a virgin, he died and was reborn annually. The festival began as a day of blood on Black Friday and culminated after three days in a day of rejoicing over the resurrection.”

Another interesting aspect to the timing of Easter is its combination of the solar and lunar calendar, taking place as it does on the first Sunday following the 14th day of the lunar month following the Equinox.  The […]

By | 2014-04-20T18:52:59+00:00 April 20th, 2014|Holidays|1 Comment

The Esoteric Easter

Most of us know these days that Easter has its roots in Paganism.  Why else is it tied to the Full Moon?  Here is a repost from 2007 you might enjoy.

easter “Easter Morning” by James B. Janknegt

While you’re all nibbling on chocolate bunnies and hunting for easter eggs, I thought you might enjoy another take on this multidimensional holiday from by G. de Purucker, Gnostic scholar:

Easter is a beautiful season of the year. It is not merely a day, it is rather a spiritual idea; indeed, it is an ideal — as it were a breath of the soul of antiquity, which has come down to us, albeit distorted, from far past ages, this soul-breathing of antiquity arising in the inner spiritual life of man. By these words I mean that Easter represents an actual event which occurs annually in the spiritual life of man, because the events of man’s spiritual life faithfully reflect the events that take place in the spiritual life of the world.

It is a fact, Brothers, that every great mystical event of the ancient religions and philosophies of the world was commemorated in a feast, in the ancient sense of this word — in a festival such as Easter in Occidental lands now is, and such as was the European original and forerunner of the present-day Easter festival: the Ostara or Eastre, as it was called by different families of the early Germanic inhabitants of the northern European countries. In those lands it took the form of a celebration of the vital forces working in the springtime, when new life is surging through the earth and affecting all earth’s children, when the trees begin to burgeon and the flowers begin […]

By | 2014-04-17T08:39:41+00:00 April 17th, 2014|Holidays|1 Comment
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