Taiko and Adaptation vs. Innovation

During the summer, I often go to the Ginza Festival which is held every year in Chicago. It is always a wonderful experience, and I hope to go again this year. During the festival, there are usually various performances based on traditional Japanese performing and martial arts. One year, I saw a taiko (drum) performance by the Midwest Buddhist Temple Taiko Group.

At the beginning, one of the artists gave an explanation of the art form. He talked about the tradition surrounding taiko, and if I remember correctly, about the history of taiko performing groups in the United States. He then explained that the next selection was changed from a traditional selection. At this point, I tensed a little. I expected him to talk about creative innovation and improving the selection. What he said next was far more impressive to me. He said that the selection was changed to adapt it to what the present performers were actually able to do well, as the traditional selection was too difficult for them.

TaikoThis struck me as the right attitude to take towards tradition, not just in performing arts, but in astrology. The traditional understanding of the passage of time is that it is unfolding from the center and perfection, and thus, is a process of decline. That is the true meaning of the term evolution.

While people have become more adept at living in and manipulating the material world through technological advancement, they have declined physically, mentally, and spiritually. In astrology, we now have computers to calculate charts for us, but we have largely lost the ability to perform complex calculations by hand and our ability to memorize large amounts of material. I, for one, am not capable of memorizing thousands of aphorisms, let alone applying them in a meaningful way.

In addition to the normal and natural process of decline, in the West, there have been substantial breaks from the philosophical foundations of astrology. Of course, the Enlightenment was a recent break from tradition. Over two thousand years prior to this, however, the Abrahamic religions also broke from older traditions, declaring all former forms of belief idolatry.  By that time, many of the former traditions had sharply declined and had not adapted well to the more limited spiritual and intellectual capacity of humans.  This had an heavy impact upon the astrology of the Medieval period and the Renaissance. Astrologers had to take care to frame their work so as not to be accused of idolatry and not to run afoul of the Church, particularly in the written records that they left behind. While we can not know this for certain, I would imagine that this made the work of our forebears seem much more mechanical and worldly than it actually was.

Furthermore, at some point in history, there was a global Patriarchal Revolution. This revolution was a spiritual and political elevation of the masculine over the feminine. The revolution was the culmination of a gradual change in which feminine deities obtained male consorts, who later usurped the feminine deities in power and importance. In some cases, such as the Abrahamic traditions, all worship of feminine deities was violently suppressed.  There was also a political revolution that was a reflection of the spiritual revolution, and in most cultures, to a greater and lesser extent, the role of women was reduced in status and importance.

So, in the West, astrologers are contending with a tradition that has declined naturally over the ages and with several major breaks in this tradition. Project Hindsight and many Classical and Traditional Astrologers are working hard to retrieve and translate many of the older texts; however, texts alone can not recreate the knowledge that has been lost.

So, does that mean that all is lost and that we can not practice astrology? Absolutely not. There is still a lot that we can do. While the taiko drummers may have had to adapt their performance, it was still amazing and exciting!

So, what can we do? Like the taiko drummers, we can proceed carefully and with humility. I do not think that we can recreate the astrological practice of the past. Too much has been lost, and too much has changed in our world. While we have some texts in the West, we do not have an unbroken line of knowledge that has been passed from teacher to student for thousands of years. On the other hand, we can acknowledge that our forebears were our superiors and avoid the temptation of trying to “improve” and “innovate” with new techniques.

I think that the best road to follow is the middle course of adapting our work to what we can do and to the realities of this day and age. We can also, as much as possible, weed out the “innovations” of the post-Enlightenment period  as well as those that were part of the earlier Patriarchal Revolution.

Original Forms/Archetypes

One of the fundamental concepts in the practice of astrology as a traditional sacred science is that of Original Form. The Japanese word for this concept is 元型, genkei, which is literally “original form/type.” This is the true and first meaning of the term, “archetype.”

The reason that I started with the phrase Original Form and the Japanese word is that when one says the word “archetype,” it is often immediately placed in the context of Jungian psychology. The concept of the Archetype is far deeper and older. Plato wrote about this concept, but he was explaining Traditional Wisdom that was already starting to become lost in his time. It has been said that astronomical “discoveries” such as the Earth’s orbit around the Sun have been a challenge for astrology; however, it is the Darwinian Pseudomythos of Evolution which has been far more devastating.

egyptian-catIt is not the Theory of Evolution itself that is devastating for astrology, but the Pseudomythos that has been built up around it, particularly in popular culture. There is nothing metaphysically untenable about more complicated forms coming from simpler forms.* An entire tree grows out of an acorn. What is metaphysically untenable, and unprovable, is that this came about by random “mutations” of which some survived and some did not. Even more untenable and unprovable is the extension of this Pseudomythos of random chaotic chance to the workings of the entire physical Universe.

Archetypes in the original and truest sense of the word are the Original Forms in the mind of the Creator. The Archetypes themselves are not manifest in the physical world, but everything in the physical world is a reflection of an Archetype. Cats are cats because they are reflections of the Cat Archetype, which originated in the mind of the Creator. While there are some Archetypes, such as the Princess or the Wheel, which can come about through Axial Beings (“humans”), they originated with the Creator, who is far above physical manifestation.

Jungian psychological “archetypes” are said to come about through the “collective unconscious” of the human psyche, which does exist in Traditional metaphysical thought, but at a level below physical manifestation, not above. Jungian “archetypes” are limited to that which can be found in the human psyche and are derived from the Darwinian Pseudomythos. The Archetype of the Cat can not exist in the Jungian or Darwinian world.

This distinction is quite important. Everything depends upon it. Our astrological forebears can not be truly understood without a Traditional understanding of Archetypes, or 元型 “Genkei” Original Forms.

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*The “evidence” for this is not so iron-clad as the Modern “scientific world view” would have us believe; however, the debate is so heated in our current culture that I really wish to avoid the mare’s nest that a discussion of the “evidence” would bring, particularly surrounding “transitional forms,” as it is unnecessary for the premise of this article.

A Feminine Tradition

Tradition is important. A grounding in tradition gives us sustenance and strength. We can not understand who we are unless we know where we came from. I believe that many of the problems of the modern world stem from a separation from our roots.

I am an astrologer, and my belief in tradition extends to my astrology. Yet, there is a problem. Most, if not all, of the historical astrologers who left behind written material were men, they often wrote from a patriarchal, and at times misogynistic, perspective. To the extent material is traditional, it tends to be patriarchal.

This problem extends far beyond astrology. In history, the study of wars and battles is considered “serious” study, while other areas of life are relegated to the margins. When we learn of the contributions of women, it is generally the contributions of women as rulers or as warriors. While it is easy to admire strong historical feminine figures such as Joan of Arc and Queen Elizabeth I, there are many other lesser known stories of feminine heroism.

For example, Queen Katherine of Aragon, who is primarily remembered for her marital troubles with King Henry the VIII, but was a remarkable person in her own right. She was fully proficient in the skills of women in that historical time; for example, she made King Henry’s shirts, even as he was courting Anne Boleyn. Yet, she also supervised all of the provisioning for King Henry’s wars, and even led the battle against the Scots while King Henry was off fighting with France. Another interesting thing she did was to promote the education of girls, and she made sure that her daughter was very well educated.

Another interesting historical figure is Empress Elizabeth of the Austria-Hungarian Empire. Yes, in many ways, she lead a rather tragic life. She had one of history’s worst mother-in-laws. Yet, she loved to travel, she learned new languages all of her life…she was said to be fluent and literate in at least 7, she was a champion of the mentally ill and convinced her husband to take an interest in her cause as well, she survived her mother-in-law, and while her first several children were taken from her by her mother-in-law, she fought and prevailed to raise her younger children.

Throughout history, women have been the keepers of tradition. Women have cooked food, made clothing, and told stories to their children. It is in these anonymous activities that our traditions have been handed down from generation to generation, and these activities are far more important to our culture and to our lives than wars or battles.

In modern times, women are freer to compete in workforce and the marketplace, and I believe that this is good and important. On the other hand, traditionally feminine contributions are as, if not more, devalued than they ever were.

This blog is devoted to the reclamation of a feminine tradition. In this blog, in addition to matters of feminine tradition, I will talk about astrology. I have spent the last several years developing my craft in a way that is feminine positive, while still being grounded in tradition. While many of my readers may not have a specific interest in astrology, I believe that the discussion is important for everyone. Our cosmology shapes our beliefs about our world and ourselves, whether or not we “believe in astrology.”

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This picture is from the Takarazuka rendition of Elizabeth, a musical about the life of Empress Elizabeth of Austria-Hungary

I have also spent the last several years deeply immersed in the Japanese language. In the modern world, Japanese culture has a strong global impact, and from the perspective of feminine tradition, it is one of the few cultures producing media in which the feminine is portrayed in a positive and empowering manner. From beautiful Takarazuka plays, with an all female cast, to shoujo anime, such as Sailor Moon and Precure, to a kawaii culture that produces gentle, feminine characters such as Hello Kitty, Japanese culture has a lot to offer to those seeking to reclaim a feminine identity.

In addition to studying Japanese, I am also studying Swedish, which is the language of my own personal heritage. My grandmother came to the U.S. from Sweden when she was 25, with my 5 year-old uncle and 2 year-old mother, following my grandfather, who arrived a year earlier, in search of his own mother.  The stories of my grandmother have been and still are a source of strength and inspiration for me, and it seemed fitting to study her mother tongue in reclaiming my feminine roots.

This project started off as one blog, but it has now grown into three. In this blog, I will be discussing matters of astrology, metaphysics, philosophy, and thealogy. It is my hope that this site will generate lively discussion in order to explore the issues raised in my articles. The second site, The Stars Within Their Courses, is a site devoted solely to astrology. The third site is called Momor’s Backporch, which is where I talk about various topics such as Anime, language learning, the state of my garden, and so forth. This is also where I will write articles in Japanese and Swedish from time to time.

Please enjoy.

よろしくお願いします。

 

Our Stars, Our Selves

How we see the stars is how we see ourselves. Every culture in history has told stories about the stars. According to these stories, the sky is filled with heroes, magical creatures, and gods who watch over us. For our ancestors, the sky reflected a larger harmony that ordered the heavens, all life, and human society. The discipline that studied this  harmony was cosmology.

Cosmology has become lost to the modern Western world. Cosmology included astronomy, astrology, metaphysics, and religion. While divination and personal consultation (what many people think of when they think of astrology) were undoubtedly the lowest, if most practical, aspect of the discipline, astrology in general was the lynchpin of cosmology. Astrology is the study of how the harmony of the heavens interacts with the earth, the study of where we belong in the cosmic order.

The MoonIn the modern West, cosmology has become reduced to mere astronomy. Metaphysics and religion became stripped from cosmology as cosmologists found ways to safely practice in the Middle Ages under the watchful eyes of a Christian Church keen to purge the world of anything that remotely resembled paganism. Astrology and astronomy parted ways in the so-called “Enlightenment.” Astronomy became an accepted science, and astrology was relegated to the backwaters.

Yet, without religion, metaphysics, and astrology, all we have is the study of the mechanics of the physical universe. This has led to a widespread belief that this is all that there is.  How we view the stars is how we view ourselves, and we have learned to see ourselves as merely physical beings, just another animal on a remote planet.

Rather than an orderly cosmos, we now see a chaotic and dangerous universe, filled with hazards such as black holes, quasars, and pulsars. Rather than gods or heroes placed in the heavens, we see balls of gas that are born, explode, and collapse in a seemingly random fashion. Stars are given numbers rather than names and are classified by physical characteristics, such as brightness.

Yes, there is wonder to be found in the physical universe. There have been many reports of deep spiritual awakening coming from a study of the beauty and majesty of the heavenly bodies.  It would take a hardened person to be able to look at the night sky without awe and humility.

That being said, to me, the beauty and wonder of the physical universe pales in comparison to the magnificent Harmony of the Spheres that can be heard in the cycles within cycles that are revealed in astrology. Modern science textbooks teach that cosmology gave way to modern astronomy when great scientists “discovered” that the Traditional Model of the Cosmos was false, and that there was a larger universe outside of our Solar System. This teaching is based on a misunderstanding of what the Traditional Model of the Cosmos represents.

The Traditional Model of the Cosmos does not represent the physical Solar System, but the Higher Planes of existence. Our Solar System, and presumably any solar system, is a microcosm of the full cosmos, as is every human being. Our Solar System, and indeed, the entire universe that can be “discovered,” exists entirely on the “earthly” or sublunary plane. Modern science can not disprove the Traditional Model of the Cosmos, because the scope of modern science is limited to the physical plane of existence. Ironically, rather than expanding our horizons beyond the solar system, modern science has limited our horizons to that which we can measure and observe with our senses and our machines. It is little wonder that the universe has become such a chaotic place to the modern world.

Astrology, if understood in its true form, can be the antidote to this modern limitation. Astrology does not “work” because there are “rays” from the planets and stars controlling our lives. Astrology “works” because Solar System is a microcosm of the larger cosmos, as are we. Astrology is not an outdated discipline that was cast aside because we now “know better”; astrology, even in its current debilitated state, is one of the few remnants of a time in which the true nature of the cosmos was known and understood.

 

The World Illusion, Truth, and Literal Facts

Traditional Wisdom teaches that the material world is an illusion from which we will all someday awaken. What does this mean?

I have not reached Enlightenment, and anyone reading this who has reached Enlightenment already knows the answer(s) to this. From an Unenlightened state, we can not fully understand this. The World Illusion seems very real to us, and indeed, it should. In the Late Iron Age, we are firmly entrenched in the material world, so the material world is more real to us than ever before.

Yet, every Tradition teaches that there are worlds other than the material world. There are worlds that are higher and those that are lower than that which we live in. The Christian Tradition simplifies this greatly by calling everything higher than the material world Heaven and everything lower than it Hell. From a Traditionalist perspective, there are many Heavens (places above the material world) and many Hells (places below the material world). All of these worlds are a part of manifestation and Creation, and all will eventually return to the One at the inbreathing at the end of time. Any state other than reunion with the One is temporary, even Paradise.

From an Unenlightened state, however, our understanding of this can only be a theoretical understanding. Even to talk about the inbreathing at the end of time is not really accurate, as time itself is a part of the World Illusion. Because we are bound in space and time, we really can not understand that which is not bound in space and time. For this reason, we have been given Mythos and stories. These Mythos and stories are told as if they were in space and time, so that we can understand them, but the Truth is beyond space and time. That is the meaning behind the statement, “The Tao that can be spoken is not the True Tao.”

Literal facts are details about the material world. History tells what happened in space and time in the context of physicality. Literal facts can be true or false within the context of the World Illusion, but they are not Truth so far as the Reality that exists beyond the material world. Filianist Scripture contains a Creation Mythos, which we believe to be True, or more accurately, we believe it to tell the story of Truth in a way that we can understand it in this day and age. We believe it to be the Only Truth, which means that we believe it tells us enough for us to live our lives and attain Liberation; however, we also believe that other True Creation Mythos exist, and are also the Only Truth which can lead to Liberation. We do not believe that this story itself as it is told in our Scripture happened in space and time in the material world, nor do we believe that any True Creation Mythos could have happened in space and time.

GuanYin4This being said, the material world is a reflection of the spiritual world, and what happens in physicality is a reverberation of the Truth. An example of this is the Mythos of the Sacrifice of the Daughter, which is found in almost all Traditions in one form or another. Filianst Scripture tells a version of this Mythos. The Sacrifice of Quan Yin is a different telling of the story, but it is the same story. The Daughter descending to Hell and dying and the vow of the bodhisattva to remain in the physical world until the “last blade of grass” is redeemed is the same sacrifice told of in a different way.

Modern Christianity teaches that a person by the name of Jesus lived and died at a specific place and time and was resurrected. It has been noted, and rightfully so, that this story is not new to Christianity and that the God Sacrifice is found everywhere in many different Traditions. From a Traditionalist perspective, if the historical story has relevance, it is because it is a reflection of the True Story, which happened outside of space and time. It may have happened in the material world or it may not have, but if it only happened in the material world in time and space, than it would not be a story of Truth, but merely one of historical fact. From this perspective, the question is not whether or not the actual events happened in history, but whether the Story itself rises to the level of Mythos, and thus able to lead to Liberation and Truth.

What does this mean for our lives within the physical world as time and space bound creatures? Does this mean that what we do in the physical world does not matter? Filianism teaches that there is a balance. It is neither world affirming nor world denying. We believe that the material world is a beautiful gift from Our Mother, the Creator God, and our relation to it should be that of humble appreciation and gratitude. We should enjoy what we have been given, and do our best to live the life that we have been given striving to manifest our True Selves, which in the context of manifestation, are our best selves. On the other hand, we try to remember that this world is not all that there is, and to avoid excessive entanglement within it.

Our thoughts and actions in the material world do have an effect on our souls, which we believe are eternal. We can not be permanently separated from Our Mother, but we can experience separation. Within manifestation, there is Light and Dark, and Good and Evil. On one hand, even Evil is a necessary part of Creation and will return to the Mother in the inbreathing at the end of time; on the other hand, Evil also represents profound separation from Our Mother, and from a Filianist perspective, as well as a general Traditionalist perspective, is something to be avoided. This is a paradox and cannot be understood from an Unenlightened state.

The Sacred Mountain and a Jealous God

Every Sacred Mountain is THE Sacred Mountain.

Mount FujiThis is an important principle in any form of Traditionalist philosophy. This can be a difficult concept to grasp, but how could it be otherwise? The Sacred Mountain is the place where Heaven and Earth meet. Whether one climbs Mount Sinai or Mount Fuji, one has climbed The Sacred Mountain. There is no need to climb a different Sacred Mountain, and if one did, it would be climbing The Sacred Mountain again, only in a different location. How could it be possible to climb the wrong Sacred Mountain? The idea seems almost absurd from this perspective.

One of the difficulties with the Abrahamic Traditions is the notion of a “Jealous God.” The “Jealous God” is a religious aberration and is not really found anywhere else. Of course, for the serious devotee of any religion, it is important to see her religion as The Only Truth, which on one level is absolutely correct. In Abrahamic Traditions, however, this belief has become exclusionary, denying the Truth of other religions. Just because one’s religion is The Only Truth does not mean that other religions are not also True; and indeed The Only Truth as well.

Every Sacred Mountain is THE Sacred Mountain.

While I am not here to tell anyone how to conduct their religious affairs, the pervading belief in a Jealous God creates a difficulty and barrier to discussions of a spiritual or religious nature, and is especially problematic when it comes to the exploration of Feminine Tradition or the Feminine Divine. One of the criticisms of Deanism and Filianism is that this form of spirituality sees the Divine as Feminine and does not include Masculine imagery in its devotional practices. Its Fundamental Mythos is also entirely Feminine.  I find it interesting because one rarely hears that type of criticism with respect to the all Masculine imagery for the Divine of the Abrahamic religions, with the possible exception of Mary. Although, even in Roman Catholicism, Mary is not officially given Divine status.

Unlike the Abrahamic Traditions, Deaism/Filianism does not believe that Dea is a Jealous God, nor does Deaism/Filianism see its Creation Mythos in terms of literal, historical facts. Indeed, if our Mythos were based on literal, historical facts, then by definition, they could not represent Universal Truth. From an un-Enlightened state, we, as humans, are not truly capable of understanding the Divine, and as beings bound in time and space, we can not understand matters beyond time and space. “The Tao that can be spoken is not the true Tao.”

To bridge the gap between Heaven and Earth and between the Divine and mere mortals, we are given devotional imagery and Mythos told to us as if they were stories set in time and space.  Of course, the images are not the Divine themselves, nor are the stories about literal, historical events that happened in space and time. They are given to us for understanding, nothing more.

In a certain respect, God or Dea is so far above us that imagery for the Divine in human form with biological gender is a poor reflection of the reality. There are religions that forbid imagery for God for this very reason. Deanistic practice does include imagery, because we feel it helps us form a closer connection with Dea and to feel Her presence in our lives.

We do not feel that worship of a Masculine God is wrong, and there are no shortage of faiths in the world that do. We do not feel that worship of God/Dea as both Masculine and Feminine is wrong either, and there are faiths in the world that do that as well. We, however, as Deanists, worship Dea in an exclusively Feminine form. Do we think that ours is the only way? Of course not. To us, all orthodox religions can be seen as a form of the Sacred Mountain. Dea is not a Jealous God.

See also:

God as Mother: Some basic questions about Feminine Monotheism

About Eclipses

As we are in the middle of eclipse season, it seemed to be a good time to talk about eclipses.  Eclipse season is the period of time in between a pair (or trio) of eclipses.  Generally, each year has two eclipse seasons, with at least one solar and one lunar eclipse within a few weeks of each other.  Physically, these are the new and full moons which occur near the North and South Nodes, or the head and tail of the dragon.  Metaphysically, the lunar light blocks the solar, and as the lunar is dependent upon the solar, her own light becomes blocked as well.

With this understanding, it is easy to see why eclipses have been traditionally seen as evil omens.  Modern Western rationalist scholarship teaches that this view is based on a naive superstition that the sun (or moon) would never return.  Given the incredible detail in which the Ancients charted the heavens, including the timing of eclipses, this view strains credulity.

In addition to coming in pairs (or trios), each eclipse is part of a larger family of eclipses, known as a Saros Series.  Saros Series are 12 to 15 centuries long, with an eclipse from the Series touching down approximately every 18 years.  While Solar and Lunar Eclipses each have their own Saros Series, they come in pairs (or trios) that touch down together.

The most recent Solar Eclipse which occurred shortly before the Vernal Equinox is from Saros Series 120, which was born on May 27, 933 AD, and which will have its last eclipse on July 7, 2195.  The paired Lunar Eclipse, which will occur on April 4, 2015, is from Saros Series 132, which was born on May 12, 1492, and which will have its last eclipse on June 26, 2754.  As you can see, the Solar Saros Series is older than the Lunar Saros Series.  Prior the birth of the younger Lunar 132, Solar Saros 120 was paired with Lunar Saros 94, which was born on May 9, 320 and had its last eclipse on June 6, 1582.

When one Saros Series is in its last eclipses, a new Saros Series is born to replace it.  When there are three eclipses in a season, one of the Saros Series is elderly, the Saros Series of the other luminary is in its prime, and the third Saros Series is in its infancy.

Queen-Isabella-and-Christopher-ColumbusFor astrologers who study Mundane Astrology, or the astrology of world events, each Saros Series can be linked to historical themes with long pedigrees.  Those familiar with U.S. history will likely recognize the year of the birth of the current Lunar Saros Series, 1492.  Interestingly enough, it was during the eclipse season that Christopher Columbus signed the contract with Spain and was given the commission to equip his fleet.  This was the expedition that led him to “discover” the Americas.  That season began with an eclipse from Lunar Saros 94 on April 12, 1492.  Next, on April 26, 1492, there was a Solar Eclipse from Saros 120.  The season ended with the first eclipse from Lunar Saros 132 on May 12, 1942.

On April 17, 1492, Christopher Columbus signed the contract with Spain to search for the Indies, and on April 30, 1492, he is given his commission to equip the royal fleet.  Also on April 30, Spain announced that it was expelling all Jewish people from the country.

Interestingly enough, the second eclipse season from that same year occurred between October 5, 1492, with Lunar Saros 99 and October 21, 1492 with Solar Saros 125.  It was during this period of time, Mr. Columbus “discovered” several places in the Americas.

A detailed analysis of the meaning of these events is beyond the scope of this article, but I think that it is safe to say that despite apparent material benefits, there was also Darkness surrounding these events.  One can not scratch the surface of historical records of subsequent events without uncovering horrors and cruelty.  On the other hand, I think that it is a good illustration of the effect of eclipses in general.  On a material level, what will actually happen during an Eclipse season can be complicated, and might even seem fortunate.  On the other hand, it will be laced with Darkness and poison, which may or may not be immediately apparent.

The good news is that from eclipse lore throughout the world, the effects of an eclipse can be avoided if proper precautions are taken.  Indeed, one of traditional duties of astrologers was to predict the timing of eclipses so that these precautions could be taken.  These precautions included staying indoors, fasting, covering wells, and most of all, avoiding viewing eclipses.  Today, eclipses are announced and filmed for people to watch over the Internet.  This seems particularly risky on a soul level.

The current eclipse season in quite interesting in its timing.  The Solar Eclipse occurred just before the Spring Equinox.  For Filianists, it occurred on the day in which Hiatus is observed.  A detailed article about the Solar Eclipse and Hiatus observance can be found here.  In short, for Filianists, Hiatus the day (or days) that ritually do not exist, and which has the same ritual symbolism as an Eclipse.

Physically, the Solar Eclipse occurred at 29 degrees of Pisces, rather than 0 degrees of Aries.  This is very important.  A Solar Eclipse at 0 degrees Aries, which is the beginning of the astrological new year, would have been particularly ominous, I think.  At 29 degrees, it still occurred during the old astrological year, and at the very end of the year at that, giving it much less impact.

Also interesting is that the paired Lunar Eclipse will occur on April 4, 2015, which for Western Christians is Holy Saturday, the day in between Good Friday and Easter, which also has the same ritual symbolism of an Eclipse.

In the modern world, it may seem difficult to protect ourselves from the effects of eclipses.  World events intrude upon our lives whether we want them or not.  Still, I think it is possible to take some basic precautions.  First and foremost, it is wise to avoid viewing eclipses at all, whether physically or on the internet.  Ritual warding and expelling of evil according to one’s tradition is also a good idea.  Also, it is good to be careful of any “opportunities” that present themselves during an eclipse season.  Even if they seem fortunate, they may be quite costly on a soul level.  Additionally, it is wise to back off from any conflict during this time, as it may be being fueled by the storm of eclipse season.  In general, it seems best to avoid anything during this season that can wait until the season is over.