When the West Stood Still, Part II
Part II will focus more on the metaphysics of current events than connecting the dots.
I. Apocalypse Fever
The Apocalypse is approaching its second month, at least in the West.
I.1 The Opportunity of Limitation
Break out your journal for this section. There are plenty of prompts to get you contemplating your state and integrating your potential during the pandemic.
My Zen teacher Susan recently told a group of her students at the end of a Zen meditation retreat, “We’re all monastics now.” … How will you use this time?– We’re All Monastics Now by Leo Babauta
Despite turbulence along the way, global energies are running along swiftly toward the Event and Ascension. Yet some people are likely finding themselves beyond stir-crazy and stressed, in the territory of confusion, hopelessness, and frustration.
Becoming personally more receptive and perceptive to Humanity’s emotions since Part 1 of this series (turns out I’ve had a serotonin deficiency for over a decade; a story for another time), I wanted to speak to the stir-craziness from a personal perspective and offer a bigger picture on how to approach the limitations of life at this time.
Disclaimer: This considers those who are indeed limited at this time. Many others in our society, unseen and unnoticed, are instead being coerced to work and overwork through this ordeal, wishing for a limitation to their circumstances instead of yearning for the Old Normal. Deliverypeople, as one example, are the backbone of continuity of civilization at this time. It’s worth considering the dignity of the people in these positions.
Per Human Design, my profile is 2/4 Hermit–Opportunist. This means reclusion and introversion — being a hermit — are my primary energies and dominant nature.
hermit: a person living in solitude as a religious discipline; any person living in solitude or seeking to do so
Both in Human Design and astrologically, my human condition also involves innate energetics around limitation and restriction.
I’ve lived with these energies and learned to work with them to advance my life, finding them propelling more than hindering. Since I’m entering my Saturn return this year, I’ve been studying Hexagram 60 in the I Ching as it is the essence of my Personality Saturn energy in Human Design, one of the specific ways in which Saturn will be affecting me as I evolve.
In astrology, Saturn is known for imposing restriction and limitation on situations, but it does so to squeeze out change and evolution. Making lemonade from lemons is an unavoidable function of our solar system and our human condition, and this energy is more concentrated in some people than others. During the pandemic, we’re all experiencing this opportunity of limitation.
The I Ching knows all about the wisdom of limitation. Here are some excerpts from Cafe au Soul on Hexagram 60: Limitation.
Limitations can resemble an obstacle to forward progress but the obstacle is really an opportunity to change how we view obstacles. Seedlings encounter rocks in the soil but the rocks keep the soil at the root where it is needed.
What opportunity is sprouting for you in the Apocalypse? Maybe it has gone unseen, appearing as an obstacle.
The pandemic, no matter how it’s affecting you, is a nearly-universal opportunity to view things differently, to review your priorities, and to turn inward. What will you gain from this?
The process of adaptation demonstrates how limitations force creatures to harmonize with a changing world. … Limitations activate the adaptive response, which transformed the scales of some dinosaurs into feathers. … The power of nature reveals how limitations drive the engine of evolution. Although you may grow frustrated with restrictions, limitations not only make you stronger, they also shape your forward growth.
Humanity is experiencing a global initiation of adaptation. Although the source of the Apocalypse is more nefarious than organic (see the next section, Armageddon Desperation), its consequences are ultimately still ricocheting through Nature. Nature has cornered us into adaptation for the sake of a larger evolution.
What areas of your life are in chaos or disharmony, begging for adaptation, change, and growth? Where is this disharmony inviting you to implement a new phase of harmony?
Sweet limitation brings good fortune … The best teacher knows that they must teach by example even if nobody follows you initially. Operating within limitations with a sense of discipline is a way to show others that limitations are the breeding ground for success. In this situation the limitations are pleasantly accepted and all are in accord.
This is the leadership energy I have in my chart. It’s leadership through the limitation of having to walk my talk, and walking it before anyone even bothers to listen to me. One of the reasons I took so long to begin sharing my work is because I was holding myself to high standards which I hadn’t met yet.
So limitation can be conducive to integrity. How are the limitations sculpting you into a better person? What have you become more aware of? What do you feel inspired to pay more attention to? Where do you feel like behaving differently? What standard do you want to hold yourself to?
Limitations lead to success = but only if you have a plan of action. When Limitations appears in its unchanging form the message is that the situation will not correct itself until a healthy respect for boundaries is acknowledged.
This is the unchanging essence of Hexagram 60 as a whole. And in this case, the laws of Nature have instituted certain boundaries against the human condition which must be acknowledged before Humanity can proceed.
What boundaries are present that you must acknowledge? What corrections do you need to make to move forward in your life, especially after the Apocalypse? (IE, do you really want to go back to “normal,” or do you want certain things to be different now that you’ve gained distance from them?)
What is your plan of action? When this all ends and it feels like you’re given a second chance at life, what will your priorities be?
In this time of isolation and unknowns, what success are you envisioning for yourself? Instead of things going back to normal, what formerly normalized things do you want to change in your life?
Benjamin Hardy, a self-made writer I admire, likes to say there are two ways we can view a situation: that it’s happening TO us or that it’s happening FOR us.
So is the Apocalypse happening to you, or for you? Are you a victim to the pandemic even if you’re not sick, or is this an opportunity to prioritize your true worth and priorities, and to do something about them now that the old way of life has gone out the window?
Some people are not going to survive this pandemic. If you do, contemplate the value of that, and the changes and corrections you can make to honor and live from that value.
When the world is ready to create a new normal, what will your contribution be? The same fears, disillusionments, and dissatisfactions as before … or something else?
This crisis event is a major milestone in the ascension timeline in which we must look deeply into our authentic core self and ask our inner spiritual guidance for the answers when addressing the greater problems humanity is facing. This is a collective dark night of the soul transition forcing us to look deeper. What kind of person do you want to be in the midst of the turmoil that is happening during the manufactured global crisis that is unraveling? Awake and aware? Asleep at the wheel?– Pestilence Program, March 2020 by Lisa Renee
I.2 Grieving the Past
I find myself in a season of life where I am immersed in the teachings of grief. The miracle is not lost on me that Winter is in fact, a season that asks us to grieve.– Honoring Grief & Praise by Pilar Lesko
Unexpectedly, Winter has extended itself through Spring and into Summer in the West. Perhaps overstaying its welcome. Alas, Humanity has no domain over the weather.
Being a hermit, this Winter has impacted me minimally. It has only made me mindful of a few things. That this time last year, I was traveling freely through Switzerland and France. That in the coming months, I contemplated attending a college summer course or driving along the Pacific Northwest. For now, these remain dreams and memories.
But the hermit space is always a safe space for me. I’m accustomed to retreating and hibernating through Winters, no matter how long they may be. (My last one was over two years long with only a few periods of thaw.) The grief I have known has been around things more personal and intimate than the fluctuations of society. Currently, my grief is minimal, my emotions stable.
Not so for many others, and perhaps yourself. For many, these societal fluctuations are what’s personal to them. So I don’t feel well equipped to address grief in this scenario, yet feel it earns acknowledgement in this article. So, I’ll let those who’ve already spoken well about it, speak about it again.
To weather these uncertain times, it’s important to acknowledge and grieve lost routines, social connections, family structures and our sense of security — and then create new ways to move forward — says interfaith chaplain and trauma counselor, Terri Daniel.– Coronavirus Has Upended Our World. It’s Ok to Grieve
One of the major root causes of sadness related to everything happening right now, according to Dr. Henshaw, is a sense of powerlessness. … “Most Americans are not accustomed to this and become rattled when their sense of safety and security are challenged, especially when it rubs against their values of individualism, autonomy, and freedom,” Dr. Forti says.– Here Are 8 Ways to Deal (and Heal) (during COVID-19)
Indeed, America is a country and a people who have never really met modern war on its land. Pearl Harbor was more of a shock than a war. (Though perhaps it was more war-like for the American–Japanese encamped after Pearl Harbor.)
While proclaiming a war against the coronavirus is, on one hand, excessive, on the other hand, coronavirus has produced the first byproducts of war many Americans have known.
People who are physically well may not feel entitled to their emotional upset over the disruption of normal life. Yet, Lott argues, it’s important to honor our own losses even if those losses seem small compared to others.– Coronavirus Has Upended Our World. It’s Ok to Grieve
This is a very important point.
There’s an odd, contradictory, socio-spiritual phenomenon of people dismissing their own suffering just because others are suffering. (Does this phenomenon have a name? It needs one.) All suffering and grief is valid regardless of its inequality. It has been odd and startling for me to witness people who suddenly invalidate their genuine experiences just to acknowledge the circumstances of someone else.
The startling contradiction is that, the moment one invalidates personal suffering, they invalidate their capacity to truly appreciate the suffering of another person. We can set things aside for the right time, sure, but not reject our own things in order to take on someone else’s.
For how can you honor in another what you reject in yourself? Imagine if the person dying a horrible death suddenly says “Oh no, I’m good, don’t mind me, please, go be happy, I’m fine. I will concern myself of your sadness and your grief.” Something is off. It doesn’t sit well in the soul.
It’s okay to feel emotional, grieving, suffering while others are physically ill. Physical suffering does not invalidate emotional suffering or mental suffering. They are merely different planes of suffering, and all require acknowledgement if any are to be assuaged.
The next quote epitomizes this.
Grief is not a preference, for choosing not to have grief when grief is there is to defer and burden someone else with having to do your grieving. This makes the world a sick place.– “The Smell of Rain on Dust” by Martin Prechtel
To dishonor your suffering is to defer it to someone else in some way for some other time.
This is the essence of intergenerational suffering passed down through genetics. Many Starseeds, healers, and sensitive ones find themselves resolving suffering not incurred through the experiences of their own lifetime, but which has been inherited through the bloodline.
Don’t be the one to pass this baton down the line, just because you wanted to make someone feel better by not feeling true in yourself.
For a moment if you would, we’ll bring our gathering into a moment of group healing and prayer. Whether it’s for yourself or your family, or for someone that you know of that’s having a really difficult time. Because many people are having a really difficult time. This is a very challenging time especially the more fractured a person is. The more a person is using or seated in their negative ego and mentally fractured, they are subjected to some of the delusions and the lack of coherence. This is really creating a weakness in their auric field. … It’s very hard to observe that happening. People that are suffering with that kind of trauma and mental fragmentation are really hurting, really having a hard time in this chaotic terrain. … Know you are eternal, you are God Sovereign Free, and that is assured now. There’s no turning back, this ascension process is going to happen, although it may not be what you imagined or expected. The ascension is going to happen for everyone at some point in the future timelines. But the issue is now, we’ve got to walk through this pile of deep shadowy rubbish, this mind control debris and this prison planet game that is being played out. This is the rougher part that we’re seeing play out in the world.– Maintaining Calm in the Storm by Lisa Renee
Grief expressed out loud, whether in or out of character, unchoreographed and honest, for someone we have lost, or a country or home we have lost, is in itself the greatest praise we could ever give them. Grief is praise, because it is the natural way love honors what it misses. … Grief is an obligation to the life one has been awarded, an obligation to life to make more life.
Grief has a sound, a sound that embarrasses the repressed and offends the oppressive; grief is the sound of being alive. … Grieving is a sacred art, not an art whose products should be sold or seen objectively. Grieving is an art that when it is fully known and made to actively happen in all its grandeur and integrity, is the backbone of all real peace. It is the art of all arts; it is the art behind all real arts.– “The Smell of Rain on Dust” by Martin Prechtel
In this time of change and uncertainty, it is paramount to honor any grief so that it may contribute to the continuing work of art that is one’s life.