In this month’s full moon meditation we explore the three levels of the self: the personality, the Soul or the Higher Self, and the Monad, the Eternal and universal Self that is shared by all.
In this group meditation we seek to resonate with the realization that’s been expressed in all the words wisdom traditions, in some form or another, that says, “The real Self in every human personality always has been and will always be the eternal child or off spring, who is One with the Father-Mother Source of all life.” With the full moon in Leo we are resonated by the animating force behind self-conscious awareness – the primordial Solar principal.
The Solar principal is the logos or light of consciousness which gives life and light to the felt sense of “I”. Leo, being ruled by the Sun which is the center of the Solar system, represents that part of each of us that is the center of our own lives. It is our sense of individual self-hood as the locus of our all our experiences.
But what happens when that sense of “I” includes our family, our community, our nation, our planet and all sentient beings throughout the cosmos? What responsibilities are we willing to take on and what sacrifices are we willing to make in order to serve that expanded sense of Self? The Leo archetype tells this story, transmitting the initiation of the Soul Centered consciousness.
On the heroes journey around the astrological wheel we reach the point where the sojourner crosses the threshold into the unknown. At this phase of the journey, the hero has passed through the preliminary stages; from being caught up in the ordinary world -Aries, to hearing the call to adventure – Taurus, to refusing the call – Gemini and receiving a special gift in a meeting with the mentor – Cancer. Having received a special gift or insight the hero now crosses the threshold, ready to act on the call to adventure.
At this phase, the preliminary activities have been completed and the journey that the alchemist/hero must undertake is understood. His mission, in other words, is revealed to him and he finally becomes willing to make a personal sacrifice in order to accomplish the task. The willingness to undertake a seemingly insurmountable objective is made all the more severe when he recognizes that there will be no personal reward in its completion, and life and limb will be risked to do so. This mission must be undertaken for the good of all humanity, not merely for the sake of honor, glory and riches which up to this point had been the primary drivers in the hero’s life.
Having received a great gift from the Goddess in Cancer the hero/heroin now finds herself saturated in a kind of care and compassion that includes the larger human family. Its no longer a matter of pride or a matter of personal accomplishment that hero is concerned with. She realizes now that she must do what needs to be done for the sake of everyone. Moreover, she has also realized – at least to some degree that – that her own powers are insufficient to accomplish the task. It is not fully known what the journey will demand of her, but it is obvious to her now, that she must receive help from beyond herself. She must overcome her own nature in order to acquire new capacities that will be necessary to meet the challenge.
In astro-alchemy we arrive at the 5th phase in Leo described as Digestion. In order to go any further in the Magnum Opus we must break down the substance into its most basic elements so that they can be purified and assimilated into a more refined state. Through fire and water the substance is reduced to its most basic constituents. In psychological terms, the self system is sorted out so that its components are recognized individually and the nutrients stored within them can be assimilated and metabolized as usable energy. The negative ego, and its shadow are identified as being obstacles in the way of the mission. Yet at the same time, we also gain the insight that hidden within these obstacles are sacred gifts that we must liberate from their frozen state in order to harness the power that they contain – for the sake of the mission.
Easy as it is to say, its not a simple task. We must swallow our pride, as it were, offering our own negative ego up as a sacrifice for the greater good of the world soul. We must digest the contents of the crucible of our psyche, so that we might liberate the energy it holds apart from the higher functions.
The symbol of the birth of the Christ Child represents this phase of work. For Christ, the Son of God, to incarnate into the world required that he take on the burden of mortality and the inevitable limitations that go along with it. Forsaking divine union and the complete wholeness of the pre-incarnated state, the Christ or hero archetype entered into a flesh and blood life to partake of all the pains, weakness and frailty of the human condition.
Later we see the higher octave of this sacrifice expressed as the crucifixion where Jesus Christ gave his own life for the sake of redeeming the world soul. This metaphor suggests that on the path of return we are required to make a sacrifice of a very personal nature. Whether its giving up something that we value, but will ultimately not assist us in completing our mission, or willingly taking on a burden that transcends our sense of personal responsibility.
From the perspective of the lower self, the redemption or liberation of the world soul is not our personal responsibility. This mission does not belong to us. As long as we have our own personal needs met, things are hunky dory. Live and let die. If its not my problem, its not a problem for me. But from the larger perspective as seen through the lens of the higher Self and Soul, all conditions in the world which beset others with suffering and hardship ARE ours as well, since we are One and joined with all life.
Moreover, the call to adventure we each hear from the Soul, asks us to realize our unique Gift and give it to the world. Each One of us has a unique perspective, set of talents and capabilities that are needed in the larger plan of evolution. To refuse the call not only deny’s the world our Gift, but it deny’s our very Soul its opportunity for expression in our lives. This tragedy is of catastrophic proportion. Its of the order of magnitude as those described in the Homeric hymns themselves. If the hero continues to refuse the call, great cataclysms will not only befall the fateful coward, but the whole world.
The problem we face at this phase of the work is that the self seeking preoccupations of the negative ego prevent us from caring enough to get to work to make a difference in the world. The symbol of Christ’s sacrifice, both to don a robe of flesh and then to surrender that robe selflessly for the mercy of Heaven, reminds us that we too are required to make a sacrifice. Like, Gilgamesh, like Hercules, Jesus and the countless other heroes in the many depictions of the One story, this phase of the Journey demands a sacrifice. We must become willing to take up the yoke of a task that is beyond a personal capabilities and sense of reward.
To set aside our need for acknowledgement, and personal benefit in-terms of status, and financial compensation and to do the hard work self transformation. If our own personal suffering or reward system has been the primary motivator for our spiritual and self – development work, it has now taken us to the limits of its reach. Here on in, our service to the world soul and our devotion to the higher spiritual principals will take us the rest of the way.