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Friday, May 27, 2011

The Cardinal Points and Your Inner "Leviim"

Your Natal Chart has four Cardinal points (East, South, West and North) that correspond with the four "Cardinal" (initiating) Tribes associated with specific directions - Yehuda (East), Reuven (South), Ephraim (West) and Dan (North).

But what about the Tribe of Levi - that "borderless" Tribe who serve G*d and their fellow Israelites? We have in our charts our "Inner Leviim," those parts of our personality that transverse borders, serve G*d and others, and relate in various ways to each other as well as to the parts of our lives they are attached to.
The Leviim were configured around the Mishkan thusly - Moshe & Aharon to the East, attached to the Tribe of Yehuda. That's the part of our personality that manifests LEADERSHIP. Yehuda is associated with Aries, Nissan, Cardinal Fire, the Spring Equinox, and is the Tribe under whose degel (banner, flag) the two successive Tribes Issachar (Taurus) and Zebulon (Gemini) rest.

When the Mishkan traveled, Moshe and Aharon were responsible for the safety and transportation of the ketoret (incense), the holy anointing oil, and the mincha offering. The "Leadership" aspect of our personality - that part of us that takes control, makes decisions, goes forward - is the part that is responsible for keeping ourselves purified (ketoret), prepared (anointing oil -  to be "anointed" is to be set apart for service), and responsible (mincha, that twice-daily acknowledgement of both personal responsibility to one's Creator as well as to one another).

Next the Tribe of Reuven to the South, Cardinal Water, the Summer Solstice, the month of Tammuz  and the Zodiac Sign of Cancer the Crab. The Levitical Family of Kohath was assigned to the South/Reuven part of the camp, and when they traveled the Kohath family was responsible for the transportation of the utensils and sacred objects, including the Ark, the Table, the Menorah, etc. This is the part of our personalities that manifest CONTAINMENT, the parts of us that we call a "klee" or a vessel, it's where we keep our important STUFF and what kind of things we keep it in. Cancer acquires stuff, Leo (the month of Av, the Tribe of Shimon) displays stuff and Virgo (Elul, Gad) sorts and sifts stuff and decides about it - is it good? Bad? Keep it or throw it out?

Next we come to the direction of West, and the Tribe of Ephraim (Cardinal Air, Libra, the Autumn Equinox, Tishrei). The Levitical Family of Gershon is attached to this area. The Gershonites were in charge of the woven articles, the coverings and it could be said that this part of our personality is concerned with COVERINGS. Libra (Ephraim, Tishrei) covers to beautify. Scorpio (Menashe, Cheshvan) covers to conceal. Sagittarius (Benyamin, Kislev) covers to reveal. This part of our chart are the layers (coverings) we put on to go out in this world - wherever Libra falls in our chart is where we cover ourselves with beauty, where Scorpio falls in our chart we cover ourselves with modesty (or it's unhealthy friends secrecy) and a sense of sovereign privacy, and where Sagittarius falls in our chart, we cover like a magician covers a tophat with a red silk handkerchief, just long enough to pull it back to reveal ... abracadabra! ... something magical.

Finally, we turn North, to the Tribe of Dan (Capricorn, Cardinal Earth, Tevet, the Winter Solstice). Dan and his associated Tribes of Asher (Aquarius, Shevat) and Naphtali (Pisces, Adar) were assigned the Merari family of Levites, and Merari was responsible for the frames, ropes and sockets of the Mishkan - in other words, the STRUCTURES.

Dan (Capricorn) is very much associated with the idea of "structures," Capricorn is connected to Saturn, the planet of structure. Saturn is to the personality what the skeletal system is to the body - it's not the prettiest thing in the world but it's the structure upon which all else hangs. Without Dan/North/Capricorn/Cardinal Earth in one's personality, you would be like "the late Mr. Lupner, G*d rest his soul" who was born without a spine (from the old Gilda Radner / Bill Murray / Jane Curtain "Saturday Night Live" skit about the Lupner Family). Our "inner Leviim" of the Merari Family STRUCTURES this quadrant of our personality - Dan structures time and space, Asher (Aquarius, fixed Air) structures ideas, and Naphtali (Pisces, Mutable Water) structures beliefs. Capricorn is the frame, Aquarius is the ropes tying everything together and Pisces is the sockets into which the frame and ropes are secured. 

Once we have initiated our leadership (Yehuda/Aries/Nissan) and created the vessels into which our personalities can fit (Reuven/Cancer/Tammuz), we cover and adorn ourselves (Ephraim/Libra/Tishrei) and take our functional place in this world (Dan/Capricorn/Tevet).

How does all of this play out in YOUR PERSONAL NATAL CHART? Everyone has one. For a personal Torah-centric Reflective Rectification Astrological Analysis session, email for details and rates.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

BaMidbar ("Numbers") Chapter 2 - A Picture of Heaven AND Earth

In just two weeks we'll be reading Parsha BaMidbar, the first chapters of the 4th Book of the Torah, "BaMidbar" ("In the Desert," or as the English translation says: the Book of Numbers). Chapter Two describes the positions of the 12 Tribes around the Mishkan - a perfect picture of the Zodiac itself, each Zodiac Sign corresponding to the Tribe to which it is assigned.

Yehuda (Aries) to the East, Ephraim (Libra) to the West, Dan (Capricorn) to the North and Reuven (Cancer) to the South. Each of these four Cardinal (initiating) Tribes is assigned a position that corresponds to an equinox or solstice, and beneath the banner of each of these four Cardinal Tribes are the two tribes associated with each particular quadrant - exactly as described in the Torah.

The Zodiac is a gigantic CALENDAR, it's an ILLUSTRATION in the Heavens of a reality on Earth - the 12 Tribes around the Mishkan, the energy of which creates a conduit for holiness .... just as it does within our own selves.

How does this work?

It's a PROGRESSION, a journey, like the journeys of the Mishkan in the desert was.

Following each Cardinal (turning point) Tribe is one Fixed Tribe/Sign and one Mutable (changeable) Tribe/Sign.  We begin in the East - as we say "let's get oriented," that means let's face EAST (towards "the Orient"). In ancient times and certainly in the Biblical era, directions were not fixed North/South as we do now, using the compass method. We fixed directions by "orienting" ourselves East, towards the Sunrise.

To the East, initiating Spring is Cardinal Fire Sign Yehuda/Aries/Nissan, followed by Fixed Earth Issachar/Taurus/Iyar and Mutable Air Zevulon/Gemini/Sivan. Then another season/corner/direction is turned and it is Summer and South; where Cardinal Water Reuven/Cancer/Tammuz is followed by Fixed Fire Shimon/Leo/Av and Mutable Earth Gad/Virgo/Elul.

Rounding the seasonal corner again to the West: Autumn begins with Cardinal Air Ephraim/Libra/Tishrei and is followed by Fixed Water Menashe/Scorpio/Cheshvan and Mutable Fire Binyamin/Sagittarius/Kislev. To the North: Cardinal Earth Dan initiates Winter (Capricorn/Teves), followed by Fixed Air Asher/Aquarius/Shevat and Mutable Water Naphtali/Pisces/Adar.

Each of the Four Elements (Fire, Water, Air and Earth) correspond to one of the Four Holy Cities in Eretz Yisrael: Jerusalem (Fire), Tiberius (Water), Tsfat (Air) and Hevron (Earth).

What's in the CENTER of this configuration? The Holy Mishkan - the "tabernacle" built to house the most holy things, and surrounding it on 4 sides within the circle itself are the Levites (who have no tribal homeland but exist within the boundary of all the other tribes). This is a picture of the human personality and soul - the Mishkan is your NESHAMA, your inner soul, the seat of holiness and the place where all your "most holy things" are kept. SURROUNDING the "mishkan" of your soul are your "inner Leviim," those personality traits which (ideally) help minister from the "offerings" of your inner 12 Tribes and facilitate the flow of holiness from inside out.

Everybody has ALL 12 SIGNS/TRIBES in their personal Natal Chart. Where does YOUR "inner Yehuda" appear in your chart?  Where do you "begin," what's your journey like, where did you come from and where are you going? In which quadrant/tribe are the majority of your Planets clustered, and what angles and relationships do they make to one another, and is there a story there?

Reflective Rectification Astrological Analysis can help you answer those questions, and give you an illustration of your own personal journey. Email for details.

Full Moon in Scorpio - "Mine" or "Ours?"

The Moon will be full today (Tuesday, May 17th) at 2:09pm Jerusalem time. The Full Moon during the month of Iyar (Taurus) is always full in Scorpio (Cheshvan) because ALL Full Moons are full in the sign OPPOSITE the Sun's position.

Full Moons are Sun/Moon polar opposites, and the Full Moon in Scorpio illuminates the "Mine" or "Yours" dynamic between Taurus ("I Have," "Mine," value as expressed by THINGS which are possessed by the individual) and Scorpio ("We Have," "Ours," values as expressed by THINGS which are shared between the individual and the personal "other.").

Scorpio is famous for many things, not the least of which is sex. Why sex? Because sex is the ultimate Scorpionic value - it's the deepest way to share between two people. Scorpio seeks transcendence through fusing with another, through that kind of intimacy that dissolves the borders between "you" and "me," between "mine" and "ours."

Cheshvan, the month associated with Scorpio, is ALSO the 2nd month of the year (with Tishrei as the first) on the OTHER side of the zodiac/year ... just as Taurus / Iyar is the 2nd month of the year (with Nissan as the first) on THIS side of the year. The relationship between the 2nd month-sign/8th month-sign is an interplay between the material world (Taurus, Earth) and the world of "Tohu v'Bohu" of pre-creation (Scorpio's subterranean, Pluto-like "Phoenix rising from the ashes" role, best illustrated by the Great Flood (the Mabul) described in Parsha Noach which happened during Cheshvan, the month of Scorpio.

Scorpio wants to "die and be reborn and then mysteriously saved," in the words of Bob Dylan ("O Sister"), Scorpio wants to take you deeper, to the deepest place, and then higher, so high there's barely enough oxygen to breathe. Just when you're about to faint Scorpio will resurrect you with a kiss so profound it will have seemed to come up from the primeval flood itself, washing your soul away from your body ... at least for a moment or two.

This Full Moon in Scorpio opposes the Sun, Mercury, Venus and Mars in Taurus. The energies are reflective of the dynamic between emotional possession (Moon in Scorpio) and personal values (all the other planets in Taurus). What is "value," and what are our "values?" Taurus is often associated with money and materialism, and this is one kind of "value." But on a deeper level, Taurus is concern with our VALUES, which is why it's the only month of the Jewish Year completely enclosed by the Sefira (we start counting the Omer during Nissan and finish in the beginning of Sivan). In astrology a "house" (one of the 12 sub-divisions or "Tribes") is called "incepted" if it's beginning and end is contained within the borders of the signs before and after it. Taurus is, in a sense, the only "incepted" time of year because the Omer is counted every night of Iyar, and counting the Omer is the ultimate activity which creates the space to meditate on one's "values."

What do you value? What are your values? Do you hold them near or share them? Are you intimate only with those who share your values, or who value you, or whom you value? How do you allow yourself to be de-valued by those around you?

This Full Moon in Scorpio falls SOMEWHERE in your chart. Where? For a personal analysis of how Scorpio/Cheshvan works in your chart, contact Lorelai at: to ask about Reflective Rectification Torah-Based Astrological Analysis services.