Interpretating the Birth-Chart
at the Transpersonal Level - 3
The natal relationship of the Moon to the Sun in a person's chart has thus a profound transpersonal meaning, because it should tell us a great deal concerning the character which the possible union of "I" and soul is likely to have, and its purpose — if it occurs at all, in even a partial manner. The aspect between the natal Sun and Moon, and the positions they occupy in the zodiacal signs and natal houses should evoke in the astrologer's mind the karmic foundation of this Sun-Moon (Yang-Yin) relationship. But at the same time, they should point to the best way — the way of destiny — in which the individual can use the solar and lunar functions. Though they have been developed in the ancestral and spiritual-reincarnational past, they can and should be used as incentives and tools when the individual begins to search for, and eventually to walk upon the transpersonal path.
The planet Mercury, in its highest aspect, is what Indian philosophers have called budhi — its supreme manifestation being the Buddha-mind. It is the mind of wisdom, the mind of the Sage who has transcended the conflicts and the dualism inherent in the intellect. In an objective and occult sense, one can see in such a mind a reflection of the consciousness of the greater Whole; and esoteric tradition states that Gautama the Buddha was the first human being whose consciousness was able freely to soar beyond the boundaries of the solar system into galactic space.
In a transpersonally interpreted natal chart Mercury represents the best manner in which the sociocultural mind inherited at birth by a human being can be reoriented, repolarized, and eventually transmuted into a "calm lake" able to reflect the most distant "stars". The atmosphere above the "lake" should be pure, unpolluted and frosty-clear — the "frost" referring here to a mentality that has transcended the "warmth" of human emotions and glamorous devotional feelings, a mentality able to operate in terms of the cool, superpersonal quality of cosmic principles and relationships.
The planet Venus should be understood to refer essentially to the capacity to pass judgments on the worth of whatever one encounters. At the biological level, value is appreciated in organismic terms: what is met will either foster the development of, and bring well-being to, the body and its functional activies, or it will hinder and impair them. At the sociocultural level, the members of a collectivity pass value-judgments according to shared moral standards. Love and hate, embrace or flight, cultural and esthetical enjoyment, or critical and emotional repudiation all have a collective foundation which is but partially modified or superficially colored by personal idiosyncrasies.
At the level of a dynamic type of individualization, Venus acquires an individualized power of creativity. But at this level, creativity mostly means a projection of the individual's I-center and its autonomous characteristics onto materials made available by the culture from which the "I" has to some extent been able to emerge. The "I" uses the cultural materials for its own purpose — the ideal of self-fulfillment and often merely of self-glorification.
At the transpersonal level, Venus can be interpreted as the capacity to give individual forms to spiritual ideals which have, as it were, seeped into the field of consciousness, either through the calmed and assuaged mind, or through the soul acting as a channel for the descent of "galactic" forces. Nevertheless, the early value system impressed upon the growing personality through childhood and adolescence undoubtedly has in most instances valuable features which should be retained. Similarly, the psychic and mental harvest of one's ancestral culture can be used on the transpersonal path to suggest valid lines of approach to the problems of developing discrimination — a crucially needed quality when an individual is faced by options from which he or she has to choose.
Venus, in another sense, is the archetypal form of the individuality. It may seem that this form has to be transcended on the transpersonal way, but what has to be transcended is actually not the individual form itself; rather, it is the personal attachment to its perpetuation as an isolated and supposedly self-sufficient entity. In other words, the essential character (or archetypal form) of the "I" is not negated or destroyed. What happens is that the "galactic We" — the pleroma state of consciousness — is allowed by the individual to focus itself in a particular way through his or her "I" in order to fulfill a particular human or planetary need. But within the "We", the "I" remains what it archetypally is. It remains, however, in a transfigured condition; the "form" is retained, but the "contents" of the form are transsubstantiated.
The planet Mars is always to be understood as the capacity to mobilize energy, either in the pursuit of a goal which the Venus function has proclaimed desirable, or as a spontaneous release of an excess of energy having reached a nearly explosive state. Biologically, Mars is the muscle power and glandular stimulation needed to hunt and overcome physical obstacles, perform the sexual function or defeat enemies. In a sociocultural sense, Mars retains much the same character to which is added the ability to work for the fulfillment of a social or cultural ambition.
As the process of individualization pursues its course, Mars takes on a more differentiated character of self-assertion. It can become the power to achieve a successful but egocentric rebellion against the sociocultural norm and the religious-moral tradition, or it can transform itself into an intense devotion for an ideal cause or to a guru.
In its transpersonal aspect, Mars is the introverted power that steels the ascetic will of the individual trying to rush along the path, but who is perhaps only headed toward a precipice or an encounter with foes that can hardly be overcome. At all levels, Mars should always work with Venus, but especially so on the transpersonal path when Venus takes the form of discrimination. If surrounded by the typically transformative planets (Uranus, Neptune and Pluto), the "red planet" may become a hostage to forces over which the individual has little control, but through such experiences it may also become the servant of transindividual forces emanating from the greater Whole, Humanity.
Jupiter and Saturn are characteristically the "social" planets in the sense that they refer respectively to personal expansion derived from human togetherness and cooperation, and to the security gained from participating in and being protected by an organized community. Expansion and security have first biological, then social aspects. At the individual level, Jupiter often represents the inner pride of the individual who feels superior to the mass of non-individualized persons in bondage to collective values and institutions — thus the feeling of belonging to an elite. In some "esoteric" groups, this may be the often patronizing feeling of being an "old soul" in the midst of as yet "young" souls. Saturn may well crystallize this sense of superiority by establishing group-patterns that rigidly define a hierarchical structure affecting all interpersonal relationships.
Thus, these two planets can act in a more or less subtly negative manner when the ideal of a transpersonal path begins to permeate the collective consciousness of the most progressive members of a culture-whole. To tread this transpersonal path without a deep sense of humility and compassion (to which Neptune often refers) and without a mind free from dogmatism and reliance upon narrow principles of structural organization (a freedom that Pluto may provide) can indeed be very dangerous. Uncontrolled Mars-represented energy, polluted by the fashions of a chaotic society and a degenerating culture, can also add more fire to pride and dogmatism; and the Mercury mind, turned into a rationalizing mechanism to give support to a massive and intractable I-center, can also play a very negative role.
The basic issue is whether the individual "I", having become aware of the existence of a level of collective being transcending the sociocultural level, can only think of reaching that higher state by still using his or her newly individualized powers according to the collective concepts and patterns of activity of his or her culture-whole — or if he or she realizes that one can only contact the higher collectivity by repudiating what essentially belongs to the lower collective (the culture and the social way of life). Repudiation does not mean total isolation, although a temporary period of isolation, or inward withdrawal and denudation, often seems to be necessary.
By permission of Leyla Rudhyar Hill
Copyright © 1980; by Dane Rudhyar
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