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Gemini Full Moon & Winter Solstice 2008

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The Cosmic Story for this year's Gemini full Moon prepares us for a special Winter Solstice (December 21st) and presents us with an opportunity to create a holiday season for ourselves without the commercialism and frantic consumerism that many of us deplore. If we want to look for meaning in these troubled times, the economic downturn gives us a chance to re-create a gentler, kinder, simpler holiday season. And what we discover during this time will stand us in good stead for the rest of the year. This year, the Winter Solstice brings us the possibility of discovering a new God/dess image.

We've come so far from our connection to nature – the energy of the Sun and the Moon and the cycle of the Year - that we've lost all sense of what these holidays mean. If we wanted to re-discover what this holiday really meant to many cultures, we'd shut down all government and business for the week, and save money and stay home with our loved ones to celebrate the gifts of LIFE and LIGHT. Take a moment to slow down, breathe, and give thanks for your life. That's the real meaning of the holiday season.

Before Christmas became big business, the festivals of Light such as the Winter Solstice, Yule, Hanukkah, and Christmas were celebrated all over the world as a birthday celebration for the Sun and a time to relax the limitations of the old year so that the new one came into being in an atmosphere of chaotic enjoyment. Life is chaotic, and when we remember that, we can stop being stuck in worry, fear and untenable situations.

One of the earliest celebrations of Winter Solstice occurred in Egypt to celebrate the re-birth of Horus, the Sun god. Because the Egyptians used a 12 month calendar like we do, the festival lasted for 12 days. Later, this custom developed into the Christian 12 days of Christmas. The Romans had their Saturnalia, in honor of the god Saturn, who was the ruler of their Golden Age. The festival reminded people of those happy times when fairness, prosperity and peaceful living were the norm.

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Saturnalia began at the temple of Saturn, when the chains that bound the god's feet all year long were loosened (allowing that golden age to resurface). Then all of Rome took a holiday. Schools as well as businesses and legal facilities were shut down. Quarrels were forgotten, and slights forgiven. The rules of society were turned on their head, and children and slaves were given power over their masters and parents. The Lord of Misrule held sway. Fires were lit to chase away evil spirits (or depressing economic news) and to help bring back the Sun. Candlelit processions, singing, feasts and balls were all part of the party and gift-giving became mandatory. Not so different from our Christmas holidays!

But what is missing from our modern celebrations is the fun and joy people had in other times and other cultures. So many people find the holiday season depressing or annoying, and no longer understand what it is we are supposed to be celebrating. This time of year connects us to the Galactic Center, the womb of our galaxy, the source of multiple energies that bombard us every day. Opening up to these cosmic energies with joy and love is the only way to ground them into Life.

The purpose of Yule is to celebrate the turning of the wheel of the year at its lowest point. Winter Solstice is the shortest day of the year, and afterwards, the Sun starts its climb back North bringing longer days, light and warmth back to us. With all the planets in forward motion for the first time this year, the energy will be strong and direct as the Wheel comes to this important yearly turning point.

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Winter Solstice is associated with the re-birth of God, and this year with Pluto conjoined with the Sun, it will be a deeply important re-birth. How will we chose to let Spirit into our lives? I find that most of us straddle a chasm: one foot is in the 'real' world and the other is grounded in Spirit. And we bounce back and forth in our belief about life and love. It's time that we take a leap of faith and stand firmly on the side of Spirit this year. If we can see Spirit operating in our lives and live consciously in that energy field, the insights and wisdom we discover will help us get through the tough times ahead. Ground Spirit in now, because we'll need a strong belief to deal with the many issues facing us in the coming years. With Mars in Sagittarius still squaring Saturn in Virgo in the Winter Solstice chart (exact on Dec. 15 on the degree of this Full Moon), let patience and persistence rather than frustration be your guide. The Libra Moon squaring Jupiter in Capricorn can help you be gracious in the most trying situations.

The Gemini Full Moon on December 12 can give us the insights and energy we need to make the holidays fulfilling and fun. The Sun, conjoined with Mars in Sagittarius, and Pluto and Mercury at 1 Capricorn, find their midpoint very near the Galactic Center. Listen to your dreams now, for they come from a deep place in you. Perhaps you'll dream dreams for all of us. (Needless to say, I'd love to hear your dreams. Please send them.)

This Full Moon creates a grand cross aspect with the Uranus-Saturn opposition that first perfected on election day this year. What new ideas are you playing with? Now that Pluto has ripped away the false facade of economic progress, what will we the people replace it with? We are here this lifetime to re-create our society. Let's find ways to do it peacefully and creatively, rather than destroy ourselves with war and death. We have the capability to share our remaining resources with the whole world. The corporations will not do it. We must demand a more humane vision for our world. Now is the time to start, as the world breaks down around us.

A grand cross has two oppositions and four squares, so the energies of all four planets are grounded. A grand cross signals that we've reached a crossroads – the tension of opposites must find constructive outlets. We have to ground our actions in our beliefs and move the energy. Like the cross, we must bind ourselves to these energies and let them do their work on us and on the world.

This grand cross is made up of Saturn in Virgo, the principle of physical reality which demands that we integrate body, mind and spirit; Uranus in Pisces, the principle of metaphysical reality, which opens us to the spiritual dimensions of life so we discover who we really are; the Sun and Mars in Sagittarius give us the courage (Mars) to stand up for our beliefs (Sun); the Moon in Gemini opens us to possibilities and options. All four elements (fire, air, earth and water) are represented. All five planets are in mutable signs, which want to harmonize their energies. Mutable energy is conceived as spiral energy: Pisces and Virgo create downward spirals connected with the past while Sagittarius and Gemini create upward spirals that look to the future. As we remember our deep spiritual history and bring it to bear in our life, our health and our work, we can create a new future for ourselves and our world.

The Sabian Symbol for the Sun at 22 Sagittarius: A Chinese laundry: making use of one's special racial-cultural background in order to survive and prosper in an alien environment. It is important to maintain your own integrity in situations where what you are is not valued. You have to be self-sustaining and work hard despite your situation.

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The Sabian Symbol for the Moon at 22 Gemini: Dancing couples crowd the barn in a harvest festival: the wholesome enjoyment of organic processes and emotional drives. Gathering together and sharing in the joy and pleasures of a successful outcome.

Even when we feel alienated from our environment, we are invited to step into the dance and find joy and pleasure in the cycle of life itself.

My holiday special of two readings for $75.00 each is still available until December 31st. Please call at 310-741-7013 to make an appointment or get a gift certificate.

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Cathy Pagano is the author of a new book, "Wisdom's Daughters: How Women Can Change the World". Cathy trained at the C. G. Jung Institut-Zurich in dream interpretation, then got her M.A. in Counseling Psychology in Feminine Spirituality, and (more...)

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