Twelve Phases of Human Experience
LIBRA - Page 3 of 3
Besides "form," another factor figures predominantly in the activities and reactions of the Libra type; and that is that of evaluation. This leads us to consider the symbol of the Scales associated with Libra. One should not take the symbol literally and conclude that Librans are "balanced" persons. They may be so occasionally; but just as often they will be found to be extremists in most important matters, even if ready seemingly to give in for the sake of social harmony.
The symbol of the Balance has actually a different meaning. Scales are used to weigh things. Weighing a thing is to compare its mass to that of a socially accepted standard weight. It is therefore to measure and to evaluate the fundamental character of a thing — its mass or weight — in terms of social value. Mass is fundamental, because it evaluates an object in terms of its relation to the planet as a whole, in terms of the factor of gravitation; and, moreover, because all values are estimated by reference to a certain wealth of gold. Scales, therefore, symbolize the evaluation of the most fundamental characteristics of any object. The point they emphasize is certainly not the factor of "balance"! — a means to an end — but that of evaluation, measurement, and (on the basis thereof) of judgment.
The Libra type is essentially a person who evaluates things, people, events by referring them to fixed social standards, either traditional or ideal. He evaluates, and while he may not feel sure enough of his social standing to pass judgments "in the name of society" — as the Sagittarian will do remorselessly — nevertheless he will have weighed the evidence and fitted things very neatly where, in his view, they belong. Social usefulness and the capacity to operate harmoniously in group are the main standards Libra uses to make his evaluations. They are social, and they are also esthetic standards. And the Libran type often operates in the field of art, because it is easier to organize notes on a score, or lights and shades in a drawing, than to bring human personalities into stable patterns of organization.
Again we must repeat that Libra is not yet a master of the social process. He has emerged out of the critical stage of self-examination and self-discipline stressed in Virgo. He has seen perhaps the Vision of the "ideal Society," of the "New Jerusalem" — the perfect City or State. But it will take more stages of evolution before the power actually to build that State with men and women is developed. Thus Libra dreams, evaluates, reaches toward and radiates the love which should eventually build the new group and the new society; but he does so as an artist rather than a politician — even though he may be a splendid manager. He is seer and harmonizer more than builder.
In another sense, Libra symbolizes the seed. It does so logically, because, in the seed, all the vital energies of the dying plant are gathered within a rigid form of organization. The seed is the symbol of the mystic brotherhood. It is also that of self-sacrifice. Thus the first degree of Libra carries the symbol of the "butterfly impaled by a dart of wisdom." The chrysalis stage was that of Virgo. Virgo prepares in every way the ground for Libra. In Libra, the "new life" begins; life as a participant in the life of society, of any Greater Whole — be it Church or "White Lodge." Libra is the Initiate as he rises from the mystic sarcophagus in the King's chamber of the Pyramid. He has seen the Vision. He has recognized his place and function in his closest group as well as in the entire universe.
Now stretches before him the path of service to the group; but that service would be of little value indeed if the total reality of that greater whole was not experienced thoroughly by every part of himself. Thus, in Scorpio, that reality has to impregnate and revivify his feelings and emotions, the very substance of his personality; and in Sagittarius, it has to transfigure his mind. Libra's vision must be insubstantiated in Scorpio; formulated mentally in Sagittarius. And as the winter solstice occurs, the Christ-child is born: God, or Humanity, become a man.
By permission of Leyla Rudhyar Hill
Copyright © 1943 by David McKay Company
and Copyright © 1970 by Dane Rudhyar
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