What have the planets got to do with me?
Before the mind got split form the body in western culture in the 17th century, our view of ourselves and the universe was rooted in the maxim ‘as above so below’, meaning the microcosm (each living thing) is a reflection of the macrocosm (the cosmos) and vice versa. In recent years this interconnection has been ‘re-discovered’ in modern sciences, such as Depths Psychology, Epi-genenics and Quantum Physics. Brian Cox – Everything is connected to everything We are slowly realising that the solar system was formed out of one original substance, gradually becoming differentiated and defined as the planets, asteroids and comets we know today. As we have evolved over time from that same primordial substance we are subject to the same rhythms and laws that govern the movements and cycles of our solar system. All ancient cultures lived/live in harmony with these cycles, honouring the fact that we humans are part of something much larger through rituals, ceremonies, myths, symbols etc.
In Astrology we look at a human being (or anything born in time) as an embodiment of the archetypal patterns at work in the collective at the moment of birth. The position of the stars at this moment gives us a map of the archetypal stories we carry. It is a great tool for consciousness, as we can now consciously engage with the archetypal patterns, rather them acting them out blindly. E.g., if we act out the Victim, Rescuer, Perpetrator dynamic, we will be no different to any other person in history who has played that role leading to the same results. If, on the other hand, we can utilise the higher level of consciousness available to the human collective at this point in time and choose to give our archetypal patterns to the dancer inside us. If we can witness them consciously through movement or other ways, we can create liberate ourselves and create new archetypal stories for all of humanity to access. This is evolution.
As the stars and the entire universe keep on moving, many different cycles are created. These are all reflected in our human experience. Working with psychological astrology and conscious dance in the beautiful landscape of Devon, I love to explore how the energies of the planets are reflected in our bodies, our psyches and the land we live on. My special interest as a dancer and teacher is to look at the yearly cycle of the earth around the sun, as the astrological Sun represents our consciousness. The Sun represents our ability to be in the centre of our circle and become conscious of the archetypal stories we carry, instead of acting them out. The astrological symbol for the Sun is a circle with a dot in the middle – representing pure spirit with the dot of consciousness in the centre. As we follow the annual journey of the sun, the cycle of nature and specifically the 4 elements are offering us great gifts to integrate the archetypes/frequencies/energies of each month and therefore to heal and integrate what is not in balance inside us.
In astrological theory the zodiac (the apparent path of the sun around the earth) is a model of the universe, which is symmetrically balanced, harmonious and highly comprehensive. The 12 fold structure reflects the ‘oneness’ of the all that is, as the circle containing everything. It also reflects the ‘two-ness’ of polarity, the ‘three-ness’ of the modes of expression and the ‘four-ness’ of the elements.
This means within the 12 months of the year, we get to experience 3 different aspects or modes of expression of each of the 4 elements. As the sun moves through a sign of the zodiac each month, we are gifted with the qualities of the archetype(s) associate with this sign and have an opportunity to heal and integrate it within our soul, body and mind.
I’ve found that listening to my body and moving with what I find one of the most helpful tools in these unsettling times. Our bodies are made out of the same elements as the rest of the universe: oxygen, carbon, hydrogen, nitrogen etc. We follow the same cycle of birth, growth, degeneration and death as every other living thing on earth and in the universe. Every death is followed by a birth. Connecting with our bodies and following the impulse that comes from within will help us to recognise that we too are governed by these cycles. However terrifying or hopeless a situation may feel, it will shift when we don't ignore it, because the universe never stops moving. I would encourage you to listen out for a movement from within; it can just be a gentle rock, a stretch or a shake. A lot of people feel too inhibited to dance because they hold a certain concept of what dance ought to look like. I invite you to let go of that for a moment. Let your body move you, because it knows exactly what it needs to do.