Astrology at the junction of Fate and Free Will.

Posts tagged ‘Chiron’

Shamanic Chiron, Part 2

***Get caught up with Part 1 of this series HERE.

I do not use the term “shamanic” lightly at all when discussing Chiron – I sometimes hear this word thrown around rather casually within the spiritual community (often within the context of someone describing experiences with things such as psilocybin, peyote, or ayahuasca) and to me it feels…disrespectful; as if it were some kind of catch-all term watering down the word’s real significance. While I do not dismiss the cultural and spiritual role such substances play when safely and respectfully handled in their proper ritualistic contexts by the proper people with proper training and authority, if you’re equating being in an altered state of consciousness as the sum total of “shamanic”, IMO you’ve got it all wrong. Waaaaay wrong – *that* is Neptune’s domain; more on this particular distinction in a moment.

Needless to say, I must admit that I cringe a little inside whenever this happens because to me it feels to me like cultural appropriation; especially if/when the word “shamanic” is being astrologically ascribed to a celestial body other than Chiron. Chiron is so often overlooked as it is in astrology that it hardly seems fair to take his “land” away like this; much in the same way the conquistadors of yore encroached upon the native kingdoms of indigenous peoples; the results of which were effectively cultural – if not literal – genocide. I do not want Chiron to suffer the same fate in a cosmic context, so as an astrologer I find myself rather protective of his domain and of the keywords that resonate with this vibration. In my eyes, Uranus is the clairvoyant, Neptune the mystic, and Pluto the occultist but it is Chiron alone who has the ability to walk the liminal boundary between Earth and Sky to reconnect body and Spirit with the Earth and the element of Aether for profound healing. It can be literal healing of mind/body/soul or it can be more figurative in nature, but the word “shamanic” is less about experiences with psychedelics and more about Initiation into a Medicine of one stripe or another that helps us to understand life on a profoundly different level so we can heal others. The modality(ies) can be different for each person, but the effects are the same.

I mentioned in Part 1 of this series that I have seen this celestial body’s fingerprint feature very strongly both in the charts of clients whose personal sacred beliefs resonate closely with those of indigenous peoples and those who literally follow a shamanic Path in terms of being actual healers. One of the more memorable consultations I had along these lines was for a woman seeking career guidance – I remember telling her that she had actual shamanic lineage flowing through her blood and was rather stunned when she subsequently revealed that she was in fact descended from the Inca people. Needless to say, I have no doubt in my mind her ancestors had indeed served as the village healers!

However, don’t just take my word for it – there are also many famous figures that provide us with some great examples of the Chiron vibe. The first and most literal that comes to mind is the nativity of controversial author Carlos Castaneda; a man with (not surprisingly for someone known for writing several books on the subject of Mesoamerican shamanism) Chiron in the area of his chart associated with writing and communication. Castaneda is a Capricorn (ruled by Saturn) with Aquarius Rising (co-ruled by Saturn) with Saturn sitting in tight but funky aspect to Chiron. Chiron is also linked up to fuzzy fictional Neptune, which means Saturn & Neptune are in a tight square as well; is it real, is it a hoax, or maybe it was all just a dream (or entheogens??) – no one knows for sure. Chiron is also noteworthy in his chart by virtue of the fact that it squares Jupiter and his Nodal Axis – it seems he was fated to write about this subject regardless of how contentious the publication of that material was destined to be

But many times Chiron’s “shamanic” vibe isn’t quite so literal in its expression and is instead translated through creative mediums. One of the better examples we see of this is via actor/director Kevin Costner; another Capricorn Sun but with Chiron less than a degree away from it. One of his best-known works was “Dances With Wolves”; a film that won several academy awards with its sensitive and humanizing (albeit romanticized and sentimental) depiction of Native American people; which was pretty much unheard of in the Western genre up until that point in time. Costner’s artistic vision did much to heal damage done by the Hollywood film industry’s depiction of the Native American as “the savage” – unsurprisingly, his Sun/Chiron combo is in a tight square to soft, idyllic, cinematic Neptune. One of his other best-known roles (in Field of Dreams) was that of a clairaudient man Ray Kinsella whose vision (Neptune) led to the healing of the painful wound (Chiron) he carried regarding his relationship with his father (Capricorn Sun) – if that’s not a perfect illustration of his astro, I’m not sure what is.

There is also the astrological case study of Jim Morrison; a Sagittarius with his Sun situated in a very tight square to Chiron in Virgo. Lead singer of legendary band “The Doors”, Jim also served as the group’s primary lyricist and expressed Chiron in Virgo’s energy via the written word – fitting, given Virgo’s literary ties. Chiron began affecting Jim very early on in life and one of the formative experiences he described having was the memory of driving through a Reservation with his family at age 4 and seeing a car accident involving several Native Americans. He was deeply affected by this incident in a spiritual sense and it eventually gave rise to the now-famous “Indians scattered on dawn’s highway bleeding; ghosts crowd the young child’s fragile eggshell mind” lyric along with his adoption of the totemic Lizard King moniker. Jim claimed that it felt as if he were in fact possessed by the wandering souls of the Native Americans he had encountered on that fateful day; perhaps in a sense he was (metaphorically, if not literally). The Lizard symbolism seems eerily fitting if we consider its possible ties to the shamanic concept of soul loss – lizards frequently drop their tails when in danger and to me this seems to align with the premise that a trauma (such as that of a young child witnessing a horrible automobile accident) can result in a part of the soul actually being lost. IMO, it is entirely possible the souls of these individuals stayed with the young Morrison emotionally, psychologically, or perhaps in Spirit in a surrogate capacity and led him to become a sort of poet-shaman in a sense.

There are many interesting examples of the Chiron vibe in action, but I thought these astro-case studies might provide readers with a richer understanding of the word “shamanic” beyond the myopic context of just the (recreational? ritual?) use of psychedelics. Linking the (possibly hallucinogenic-induced) seeing of “visions” with the word “shamanic” is a lot like equating a Ferris Wheel with Disneyland; yes each of the formers are part and parcel of their respective latters, but just because you’re on a Ferris Wheel it doesn’t automatically mean you’re at “The Happiest Place On Earth”. The result is a rather one-dimensional perspective on what Chiron is all about and my hope in continuing this series is to help crack open the doors of perception to shift the way people understand this astrological energy.

08/21/2017

Healing Chiron In Pisces Pain

A how-to guide in a nutshell:

The agony of isolation is actually an illusion caused by a disconnection from the Universal; reconnect to this and you will find respite from that which ails you. We are never truly alone – anyone in human history who has experienced, is currently experiencing, or who will experience similar pain is right beside us in Spirit. Imagine how many people over how many thousands of locations and lifetimes understand exactly what we’re going through! If this visualization isn’t enough by itself, there is always Divinity to turn to; Spirit is always there for us. Go within and reconnect to God/Goddess/Source, your Guides, Angels, Ancestors, and any Power Animals (living, passed on, or symbolic) that resonate with you – remembering always that Divinity has an infinite amount of love, mercy, and compassion for whatever we are going through – because spiritual healing is a huge keynote of this energy. Meditate, pray, and in those moments when the road ahead seems impossible, practice surrender and ask for help. The more we do so, the better our chances for a miraculous healing.


08/04/2017

Shamanic Chiron, Part 1

“Jason and His Teacher” (Chiron) by artist Maxfield Parrish

In this writer’s humble opinion, Chiron doesn’t receive nearly enough astrological recognition – many people haven’t even heard of this relatively newer celestial object, so if you are one of them please don’t feel badly because I am about to change that right now. I plan to do a whole series on this topic as a matter of fact, so do stay tuned for more.  But for now let us begin with some basics, which involves a little background on this astrological body.   Let’s explore…

In 1977 Chiron was discovered in an expanse of space between the Asteroid Belt and the Kuiper Belt – it was the first of its kind found and as such actually prompted the classification of a whole new variety of space objects; the centaurs. Chiron has always seemed to have a bit of a problem with labels – we might expect this with something named for a mythological demigod/horse “half-breed”. Astronomers first called it an asteroid, then a minor planet, comet, and finally seem to have settled on a combination comet/minor planet designation, with a few preferring to use the term “proto-comet”. Astrologically, we tend to place it under the catch-all umbrella of “asteroid” in much in the same way as the Sun and Moon are often generically lumped into the category of “planets” simply for ease. This is why we tend to hear far less about it comparatively speaking – in most astrological software, it has to be selected as an additional object to even be viewed in the chart.

I think this is a mistake, personally – if your chart has Chiron featuring prominently in it, you’re *going* to feel it and in a big way; similar to how you’d notice a broken toe that causes you to limp around for an unspecified period of time. And if you don’t splint it properly, you could even wind up favoring that foot for the rest of your life. Chiron conditions can, unfortunately, be chronic and have a crippling effect on body and/or soul…unless we avail ourselves of its Medicine. And while its brand of healing does improve symptoms/quality of life, it tends to be more palliative in nature as often there isn’t a solid, definitive, singular “cure” for its ailments.

Chiron shows where and how we have been deeply “wounded” to the point where structural integrity has actually been weakened and there is no “safe container” available hold that hurt. It also reveals where we must heal ourselves, learning through this process things that will actually help us to heal others – for this reason, it aligns with the Shaman or Medicine (Wo)Man archetype. Chiron has huge ties to health and wellness, the physical and spiritual “bodies”, as well as holistic and alternative treatments/modalities. It represents the Initiatory or Healing Crisis that becomes a rite of passage for those who would undertake this physical and spiritual “Journey”. I should mention at this point that I’ve actually worked with a good number of clients who follow such a path in terms of their own personal sacred beliefs and/or work (one is so often tied to the other with Chiron), and it is always, ALWAYS Chiron I find activated. Chiron is the “walker between worlds”; someone who straddles the liminal boundary between Earth (Saturn) and Sky (Uranus) – is it any wonder its physical orbit takes place in the space between these two planets? What I also find amazing about this is Chiron has a natural affinity for astrology – in Greek mythology he was *the* premier teacher of this Art, so it stands to reason Chiron-dominant individuals would tend to seek the counsel of astrology.

To be continued…   *** See also: Shamanic Chiron, Part 2

06/13/2017

Chiron Trine Mars: Healing Anger

AngerIsNaturalMars retrograding in Scorpio sure has been bringing a lot of internal sludge up to the surface and putting it front-and-center for us all, serving it up raw-and-bleeding-style.  It gets pretty hard to ignore our character defects under this vibe, as Mars retrograde in Scorpio is all about facing down anything grotty lingering in dark corners of the psyche.  Now the Red Planet turns direct in fairly short order (June 29th), but its current slowed movement has put it in prolonged contact to both Uranus & healing asteroid Chiron.  We have certainly seen the Mars/Uranus end of things via the shocking outburst of rage that hit the news recently; a man said to be waging an internal war with his own sexuality who lashed out and perpetrated a horrific act of violence at a gay nightclub in Orlando. But rather than focus on this tragic facet of Martian energy, let’s direct our attention to the tremendous healing potential afforded to us by the current trine between Mars in Scorpio and Chiron in Pisces.

With Mars in Scorpio, what we are fundamentally looking at is the destructive side of anger and how it can implode on us from within if we don’t transform it. Before I go any further, let me just state that I strongly disagree with the general New Age mentality that entails automatically slapping a “negative” label on emotions such as anger – I don’t believe in judging any natural, organically-occurring emotion as being inherently “bad”.  All emotions serve a legitimate purpose, and our ire can also be a vastly effective motivational tool when channeled properly.  But for the purposes of this post, right now we’re going to be discussing the more pathological side of anger, as any planet found in Scorpio can easily corrupt if we’re not digging for the insight that allows us to turn it into a source of empowerment.  It is the nature of the beast, after all; Scorpio is either the Scorpion or the Phoenix as it is a sign of extremes.

So Mars’ retrograde back through Scorpio (since May 27th) has involved many of us getting face-to-face with our “demons”; anger being one of them.  But with The Red Planet now in harmonious contact with Chiron in Pisces, we start to heal this with things like compassion, acceptance, and forgiveness.  We come to an understanding that – underneath it all – anger is often just a reaction to pain, and we start confronting it instead of denying so it can be dissolved, released, and ultimately healed. Perhaps the source of this is frustration, or even deeply buried grief – if you’re into working with the metaphysical properties of stones and crystals at all, the energy of Apache Tears may be helpful to this end.  Regardless, the next month+ is a fabulous time to bravely face the REAL source of our rage: Our pain. The blessing inherent in Chiron/Mars contacts is they do tend to bestow motivation to “heal thyself”, where we are driven to seek wholeness rather than act from a place of woundedness. Along this vein, anger (especially the chronic variety) can take energy away from our individual healing process, so when we’re pissed off about something know the answer isn’t always the outward-based focus of having it out.  Sometimes it lies instead in retreating to look within so we can reflect upon the way(s) this emotion may not be truly serving us, and seeking to mend that which has been doing more harm than good.

06/22/2016