One good question to ask ourselves in order to understand each sign a little better is, “how does the quality of light during this sign’s time of year inform the archetypal landscape of the sign?” Even though the zodiac is used all over the world, it comes from the northern hemisphere, and so its good to understand the seasonal qualities of the signs from that point of view (on a side note–I think it would be interesting to look at charts in the southern hemisphere from a reversed point of view..just to see how it reads..I’m that convinced of the importance of the seasonal light quality of the Sun!).
So on a day like today, while the Sun is in Capricorn, and the Moon is in Leo, what combination of seasonal energies are presenting themselves?
The beginning of winter (Capricorn), and the middle of summer (Leo).
Let’s look at both in depth.
The beginning of winter: the light is actually returning, gradually, day by day, very very slowly, though it is the coldest time of year. The celebration of the return of the light has passed over and now comes the long, slow, hard march toward spring, rebirth, and summer. Capricorn matches this slow march of time with its love of progress, hard work, determination, process orientation, time, maturity, old age, elderhood, no complaining, etc. Capricorn is a wintry sign with a saturnine or melancholic constitution. It’s the kind of light and the quality of day that we’re experiencing right now, here in the north, that originally matched up with Capricorn’s concern with longevity, legacy, and steely determinism. It’s a bleak and cold kind of ambition that starts the journey of the return of the light.
Now let’s look at the middle of summer, for our Moon in Leo: during Leo’s time, the summer is at its most stable and solid moment, and yet the light is dying quicker every day and the knowledge of the death of our solar year is becoming unavoidable. Leo’s sign qualtiies match this solid-light-yet-light-dying complexity with its concerns for immortality, destiny, bravery, courage, and the hero’s journey. Leo is that part of us that longs to live forever and “rages against the dying of the light.” A rage to live, a rage to assert our unique destiny against our impending deaths, and a rage to live for the heart’s callings. The lions roar asks us to find courage, heart, and honor even while the flower of life is wilting.
Putting it all together, whenever we want to understand the unique energy of the day, we can simply combine the seasonal sign qualities of the Sun and the Moon to get a sense of what’s up.
Let’s try it: the slow and saturnine climb upward is helped by a lion’s roar…a warm burst of courage helps the slow process of Capricorn find its footing and moves us forward with a bit more radiance and excitement!
* During the first stretch of a marathon the icy cold runner realizes she’s running at a better pace than she’s ever run before…suddenly her stoic spirit is lifted
* During a cold mountain climb, near the base, the sun bursts through the clouds, the climbing suddenly feels a little easier, though there is still a long ways to go
* At the outset of a project or relationship, too much pride or anticipation gets in the way…there is too much at stake too quickly
* A heavy, weighty, proud fixation, ambition, and determination…”I will win, I will get there, I will last forever, I will do this MY WAY, it’s already happening…”
You can combine the energies anyway you like to find how they might be showing up for you today. Just think…for a few days, the middle of summer, here with me at this wintry start of the new year!
Prayer: Help us to hear the winter lion’s roar.
Image by courtesy of Tambako at creative commons image licensing.