16° to Leo 30°)
FIRST LEVEL: ACTIONAL
136 (LEO 16°): THE STORM ENDED, ALL NATURE REJOICES IN BRILLIANT
The surge of life and love after a major
symbol speaks clearly for itself. How brilliant the light after the long
"night of the soul"! The battered but unconquered consciousness
finds itself exalted in the marriage of sunbeams and rising sap. This indeed
is "Release" — light and life singing in the cleansed and
refreshed mind, flooded for a while by the waters of feeling.
This is the first stage in the twenty-eighth five-fold sequence. It is a sequence that reveals consciousness at its most inspiring moments of enjoyment. But these "peak experiences" can operate at several levels. The first and most basic level is that of life itself, and of the overcoming of its many crises — THE JOY AND POWER OF NEW BEGINNINGS.
137 (LEO 17°): A VOLUNTEER CHURCH CHOIR SINGING RELIGIOUS HYMNS.
The feeling of togetherness which unites men and women in their dedication
to a collective ideal.
in its institutionalized aspect is the attempt to give a transcendental
character to the feeling of community. The fellowship of common work needed
for substance and security in a dangerous world is exalted in periodic rituals
in which the co-workers participate. At such moments the consciousness and
feelings of human beings flow into a common mold in which they become
refreshed by the experience of shared values and beliefs.
This second stage symbol presents a contrast with that of the first only in that the collectively human aspect of experience is in contrast to the purely natural and fundamental character of instinctual life. The existence of a volunteer church choir implies a rather steady phase of culture and society. What is sung reflects the special way in which a particular community of human beings — extensive as it may be — interprets the deepest realities of human existence and man's longings for an ideal. The symbol expresses the idealized aspect of TOGETHERNESS.
138 (LEO 18°): A CHEMIST CONDUCTS AN EXPERIMENT FOR HIS STUDENTS.
In inquiring into the hidden process of nature, the human mind experiences
the thrill of discovery.
we reach the level of intellectual analysis and the human ability to control
natural processes. This ability is based on the inherited knowledge acquired
by a community of men, generation after generation. The symbol stresses this
fact, as it presents a teaching situation. The individual demonstrates his
power, which is founded on a long series of efforts. He is one link in an
ancestral chain which his activity prolongs into the future.
At this third stage of the twenty-eighth phase of the cyclic process we see man, as an agent of the collectivity of human beings, approaching nature in terms of the possibility of transforming it in order to satisfy his needs or his wants. At the highest level of this activity one can speak of ALCHEMY.
139 (LEO 19°): A HOUSEBOAT PARTY.
The enjoyment of temporary freedom from rigidly structured social behavior.
symbol in a sense duplicates the one for Leo 12°, except that it implies a
less conventional and more youth-oriented type of gathering. The houseboat
brings an intimacy and a "bohemian" character to the relationships
between the participants, while "the evening lawn party" reflects a
more socially respectable and superficial kind of interaction between
middle-class sophisticates. The houseboat may be anchored, yet it floats on
the river which — symbolically at least — extends far beyond the narrow
social setup. What is suggested is that in such a gathering, men and women
seek to at least get the feeling of the free flow of energies, as an escape
from the routine activities of their business or student lives.
fourth stage symbol indicates the possibility of finding "release"
for natural energies in group entertainment and enhanced interpersonal
contacts. It speaks of FREEDOM FROM SOCIAL RIGIDITY.
140 (LEO 20°): ZUNI INDIANS PERFORM A RITUAL TO THE SUN.
A return to the glorification of natural energies.
the first symbol of this five-fold sequence pictured the magnificence of the
returning sun after a storm, in this last symbol we see, by implication, man
returning to nature and glorifying the sun after the long crisis of
"civilized" living in artificial cities. For many years now, the
American Pueblo Indian has been for the weary city dweller and the dried-up
intellectual a symbol of this "return to nature." After having
ruthlessly destroyed him, we come to him as an exemplar of peaceful and
harmonious group living.
fifth symbol of the twenty-eighth sequence brings us the image of a reversal
of our socialized activity and opens for us the way to the deepest release of
our long-denied root energies. Natural man links himself consciously to the
source of all life on earth. And this means IDENTIFICATION THROUGH WORSHIP —
and the sanctification of the creative power.
141 (LEO 21°): INTOXICATED CHICKENS DIZZILY FLAP THEIR WINGS TRYING TO
The often-negative and at times ludicrous first experience with spiritual
Near Eastern symbolism wine, intoxication, and vineyards always refer to
ecstatic experiences and to the contact with mystical or occult schools.
"Chickens" here suggest that we are dealing with human beings who
are the standardized products of their culture, and more or less
undifferentiated specimens of a social norm. Brought accidentally or
prematurely to mystical or occult experiences, they usually react to them in a
highly confused and "dizzy" manner. What reacts in them is the ego,
and the ego can never "fly" (i.e. experience spiritually
transcendental realities in an effectual manner).
This first symbol of the twenty-ninth five-fold sequence presents to us a picture of the unsatisfactory way many people today — especially young people — approach what purports to be spiritual reality. The "food" may be intoxicating, consciousness-expanding, but the inner openings lack depth and constructiveness, whether or not they produce what appears to be wonderful feelings. One may speak here of the danger of PREMATURE EXPANSION OF CONSCIOUSNESS.
142 (LEO 22°): A CARRIER PIGEON FULFILLING ITS MISSION.
Spirituality, in terms of training for service to mankind.
contrast with the intoxicated chicken, we now have the successfully trained
carrier pigeon delivering the message it was its function to carry. Here the
domesticated bird is seen endowed with a special significance and purpose.
This refers to spiritual energies which are being used constructively and
which bring to the consciousness messages from other realms. Individual
realizations acquire their true meaning only as they fulfill a
second stage symbol clearly presents a contrasting alternative to what the
preceding picture revealed. The "release" of higher energies becomes
effective and valuable to the extent to which it serves a higher, but concrete
and definite, purpose. This is the ideal of the WORLD SERVER.
143 (LEO 23°): IN A CIRCUS THE BAREBACK RIDER DISPLAYS HER DANGEROUS
The audacity and perseverance required to control and play with the
powerful energies of the vital realm in human existence.
horse has always been the symbol of the vital energies. In a wild state the
horse represents the magnificent, raw, impetuous energy of the libido in all
its forms. When tamed, this energy is put to man's service. There are men who
have dominated their natural energies so well that they can perform
spectacular feats. Here these achievements are seen within the context of a
social function and expressing a flair for dramatics.
this third stage, the ego is in control; he is a great showman, but he serves
a purpose. The performance stirs the imagination of the young consciousness.
It raises the mind above the commonplace. The Keyword is VIRTUOSITY.
144 (LEO 24°): TOTALLY CONCENTRATED UPON INNER SPIRITUAL ATTAINMENT, A
MAN IS SITTING IN A STATE OF COMPLETE NEGLECT OF BODILY APPEARANCE AND
An interior focalization of energy and consciousness at the expense of all
forms of outward activity and care.
This traditional image of the
Hindu holy man in the typical Western mind may well hide the fact that without
proper training and intense concentration, what we usually consider spiritual
attainment, self-realization and the "God experience" is not
possible. The "intoxicated chickens" of the Leo 21° symbol must
learn self-discipline if they want to "fly." There can be no halfway
measures if the goal of true Yoga is to be reached.
This fourth stage symbol, as usual, suggests a certain kind of "technique," or at least an adequate means to reach an envisioned goal. The means is TOTAL CONCENTRATION.
145 (LEO 25°): A LARGE CAMEL IS SEEN CROSSING A VAST AND FORBIDDING
Self-sufficiency in the face of a long and exhausting adventure.
The camel here represents a living organism that is able to sustain itself independently of its environment at the start of a trying journey. (The original formulation of the symbol did not refer to "a man on camel back.") The organism carries within itself what is absolutely needed for survival. At the deeper human level 'of consciousness it is easy to see the value of self-reliance and self-sufficiency as one enters the occult Path leading to a more dynamic and more inclusive realm of existence.
camel carries water within its body, and it is said that the dromedary is able
to utilize the matter stored in its large protuberance as food. The suggestion
here is that in order to be released from bondage to the "old world"
we should be completely self-contained emotionally; having absorbed the mental
food which this old culture has given us, we are ready to face "the
desert," nothingness, Sunya . . . until we reach the "new
world." We need TOTAL INDEPENDENCE from our surroundings and utter
146 (LEO 26°): AFTER THE HEAVY STORM, A RAINBOW.
Linking above and below, the Covenant with one's divine nature, promise of
the Bible the rainbow is the sign of the Covenant established by God with Noah
(the cyclic "Seed man") guaranteeing that no longer shall the
destructive power of Spirit (the Shiva aspect of the Divine) be used to
destroy life on earth. As we come to the
At the first stage of this thirtieth sequence, the symbol of the rainbow shows us the need to maintain a state of open communication between the Sky and the Earth within our total being — not for the sake of finding an ever-elusive "pot of gold" at the end of the rainbow, for this end is never to be reached, but in order to face the totality of our individual selfhood as it is projected in the many-hued dome of our sky-flung consciousness. After every successfully met crisis, the REVELATION OF WORTH comes to us, and with it comes the promise of success, if only we do our part.
147 (LEO 27°): THE LUMINESCENCE OF DAWN IN THE EASTERN SKY.
The exalting challenge of new opportunities at the threshold of a new
While the rainbow marks the end of the crisis, early dawn indicates the real beginning of the new period of activity. In the Biblical symbolism Noah plants his "vineyard" — he begins to teach the "secret doctrine" which he inherited from those Ben Elohim (Sons of God) who had not been sucked down into whirlpools of materiality. After the "peak experience" in which we touch our "divine" potentialities comes the struggle with everyday problems. But at first the state of deep inner exultation remains within us. We are aglow with its promise.
crisis and the blessings it has brought to us are relatively unusual events;
every day has its dawn, which we should meet with a pure heart and a clear
mind. Alpha (dawn) and omega (the concluding peak experience) are opposites,
yet the same. The Keyword here is ILLUMINATION.
148 (LEO 28°): MANY LITTLE BIRDS ON A LIMB OF A BIG TREE.
A wide, and perhaps confusing, openness to a multiplicity of inspiring
There is a stage in the spiritual life — which is not different from the everyday life — during which the consciousness, aspiring to greater realizations or more impressive forms of self-expression, feels itself flooded with new ideas and new possibilities. This can be very exciting, yet also quite confusing. It becomes necessary to focus oneself by limiting one's field of vision and activity.
third stage of the thirtieth five-fold sequence brings us the results of the
two preceding ones. We should try not to be OVERWHELMED WITH
yet should enjoy the wonderful lightness of feeling this may bring after
perhaps many days, months or years of frustration or darkness.
149 (LEO 29°): A MERMAID EMERGES FROM THE OCEAN WAVES READY FOR REBIRTH
IN HUMAN FORM.
The stage at which an intense feeling-intuition rising from the unconscious
is about to take form as a conscious thought.
mermaid personifies a stage of awareness still partially enveloped by the
ever-moving and ever-elusive ocean of the collective Unconscious, yet already
half formulated by the conscious mind. Any creative thinker or artist knows
well the peculiar mixture of elation and anxiety characterizing such a stage.
Will the intuitive feeling fade away reabsorbed into the unconscious, or will
the inexpressible realization acquire the concreteness and expressible form of
a concept or a definite motif in an art form?
fourth symbol in the thirtieth five-fold sequence suggests that the fire of
desire for concrete and steady form burns at the root of all techniques of
self-expression. An unconscious energy archetype is reaching toward
consciousness through the creator, as cosmic Love seeks tangible
manifestation through human lovers. The whole pre-human universe
reaches eagerly to the human stage of clear and steady consciousness. It is
this great evolutionary urge, this elan vital, which is implied in this
symbol of the mermaid seeking human incarnation — the YEARNING FOR CONSCIOUS
FORM AND SOLIDITY.
150 (LEO 30°): AN UNSEALED LETTER.
The realization by the individual that all thoughts and all messages are
inevitably to be shared with all men.
as it does as the end of this tenth scene and linked with the last degree of
the zodiacal sign, Leo, this symbol seems at first quite puzzling; when it has
been thought of as an isolated symbol, its essential meaning has not been
apparent. The fact that a letter is unsealed does not imply a trust that other
people will not read its contents, but rather the idea that the contents are
for all men to read. The letter contains a public message in the sense that
when man has reached the stage of true mental repolarization and development
— which we see in the very first symbol for Leo — he has actually become a
participant in the One Mind of humanity. Nothing can really be hidden, except
superficially and for a brief time. What any man thinks and deeply realizes
becomes the property of all men. Nothing is more senseless than possessiveness
in the realm of ideas. If God speaks to a man, Man hears the word. Nothing can
remain permanently "sealed."
this thirtieth sequence of five symbols ends, it is made clear to us, and
particularly to the inherently proud Leo type, that all that takes form within
the mind of a man belongs to all men. Communication and SHARING must always
prevail over the will to glorify oneself by claiming sole possession of ideas
An Astrological Mandala