Every artist was first an amateur.
—Ralph Waldo Emerson
Self-refinement; Growth; Evolution
Positive Archetypes—the Essential Nature of Virgo
The… Perfectionist; Analyst; Crafts-person/Apprentice; Neophyte/Initiate through to Mentor/Role Model; Maestro/Adept; Critic; Expert; Martyr/Saint; Disciple; Worker/Servant; Details person; Health Care Worker; Problem Solver
Negative Archetypes—Learning Experiences for Virgo
The… Devastating Critic; Censor; Faultfinder; Drudge; Wage Slave; Complainer; Fussbudget; Blamer; Martyr/Victim; Hypochondriac; Health Maniac; “Guilty/Unworthy” One
With the first touches of coolness in the air I always feel a little melancholy that summer can’t last forever. Like children have to grow up, even Leo can’t hold the spotlight forever. The focus shifts…
Responsibilities crowd in on us along with the harvest season and preparation for the winter, entering school, or going back to work after the holidays.
And even though most of us leave harvesting to farmers nowadays, all of our lives still depend on this cycle of nature. Historically, this was the time for laying in stores so that, come January when the snow was deep, you could still survive.
VIRGO is the goddess of growing things, especially plants. Known also as CERES, she’s the goddess of motherly love. For thousands of years she presided over the harvest as well as rites of passage. “Ceres,” is the root of our word “cereal.” She’s the One Who Nourishes. And, in a mode of mothering we don’t think of as often, she’s also the One Who Weans.
Going back to her times in ancient history can give us perspective on this transitional period.
The first five signs of the Zodiac, if you think of them as phases, are all focussed on more personal concerns and can also symbolize the period of childhood to puberty; but as we enter Virgo, the focus shifts to making the transition to adulthood. In ancient times, that meant initiation.
Initiation? The word, to our present-day minds, conjures up weird images of bizarre and barbaric rites; but simply understood, it’s just the social event recognized by any community that acknowledges a human being’s entry into adulthood.
I guess nowadays high school graduation functions in a way as a rite of passage. Although, I’d say it doesn’t represent much of any depth to many of us.
But, speaking in Virgoan terms again, this is a critical turning point. We’re learning to include others in our concerns, rather than thinking in terms of only what we need for ourselves.
The wisdom to be learned, ultimately will come together in the Pisces phase where we learn that we are all inseparable in this great tapestry of life. But for now, we need to be reminded that we came here for a reason. We came to learn something and to make a contribution. What is it?
Remembering this is the purpose behind a rite of passage.
In stories recounting initiation experiences, such as told by Malidoma Some or Martin Prechtel, we learn that not everyone comes back from a true rite of passage. Part of its purpose is to mimic death, and so remind us of where we were before we entered this dimension and why we entered it. It’s a truly challenging and awesome experience.
By offering initiation rites, elders of communities for thousands of years have given younger people the gift of a truly meaningful life, helping them evade the pitfall of purposeless, addiction-driven existence.
In another way of thinking, this is the time when, because we’re now past being children, we begin to take care of ourselves. We’re no longer dependent on Mom and Dad and we’re ready to steer the ship of our own life. This can also be a great gift to Mom and Dad, or whoever our Caretaker/s have been.
But what does it mean to be born under this sign?
One way of thinking about it, is that we’re in a lifetime of learning something about ourselves. Or that we may have come to learn how to serve humanity in some special way. Or that perhaps we’ve had many lifetimes learning a particular skill or trait and have now re-entered the human experience full of the bounty of harvest, ready to pass on our knowledge as a Mentor or a Maestro or an Elder.
Each of the signs casts a shadow. There’s a morning shadow and an afternoon shadow.
Virgo’s morning shadow is ignorance. I once had a great mentor, Randy Potter from whom I learned Piano Tuning. He was fond of saying, “We’re all ignorant—just on different topics.”
Virgo represents that part of us that doesn’t know—where we need training and mentoring—and requires our openness and humility (I didn’t say humiliation).
Virgo’s afternoon shadow, is shame or self-doubt. In the process of learning we’ve found out what it’s like to make mistakes. We’ve made a fool of ourselves many times.
We’ve also learned how much there is to learn…there’s an infinite ocean of self-knowledge to those with enough humility and openness to receive. Hopefully, we’ve also experienced the steadying hand and presence of a Mentor. Why would we want to go it alone?
But it has become our turn now, to step into the shoes of the Maestro. Our wisdom of years and perhaps lifetimes is needed in the community. Not that we stop learning, but that we can enjoy the grace and the relative effortlessness of being an expert in our given field.
Or perhaps our work is simply over with and it’s time to relax and enjoy life without the pressure of responsibilities.
This is when we have to shed our self doubt and answer the question posed by comedian, Lily Tomlin, “Why doesn’t anyone ever try softer?”
So if you’re a Virgo, or any other sign for that matter, and would like to have an astrological perspective on yourself, call (604) 448-8940 or contact me at email@example.com
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