September 23 - October 22, 2015
Serenity; Balance; Harmony; Grace; Aesthetic Ecstasy
Positive Archetypes—the Essential Nature of Libra
The… Lover; Artist; Poised One; Peacemaker/Negotiator; Moderator; Mediator; Judge; Counselor; Partner; Friend; Liaison; Adviser; Accompanist; Debutante/Perfect Lady/Gentleman
Negative Archetypes—Learning Experiences for Libra
The… Flirt; Manipulator; Vacillator; Co-dependant; Phony; Fashion Plate; Sybarite; Two-faced Person/Fence-sitter/Conflict-avoider
Enduring in the face of obstacles, pain, fatigue, frustration, opposition, hardship and even enduring in good times will all bring you success…Acting with endurance will relieve you of all blame…the superior person stands firm in the changing times and does not change his direction.
—The Yi Jing, Chinese Book of Changes
Hexagram 32, Heng/Duration
translation by Wu Wei
AT THE CENTER OF THE SCALES THERE’S NO MOVEMENT AT ALL
The Equinox arrives. Day and night are equal in length. The weather isn’t too hot or too cold. This is the time of Libra…Woman/Man, light/dark/opened/closed, sweet/sour, success/failure, love/hate and on and on the list of opposites goes. It’s one of the basic laws of our universe. Even a small child can tell you about opposites. Dark gives meaning to light—and no matter how much fun you’re having, would anybody ever choose an endless day with no sleep? At every hurricane’s center is a complete calm.
It has to be that way.
The Libran scales are a really ancient metaphor. They’re the old fashioned tipping kind, not the digital kind. Standing at the center of these scales, there’s no movement at all, just a very clear perspective. What’s to be learned from it?
Gemini came in to watch the play of opposites too, but to revel in them and be amazed and confused and amazed again that they all emanate from the same source; but you could think of Libra—from an athletic point of view—as the ultimate resistance training.
By having your balance challenged, you can learn what balance is.
Knowing that each half of an experience is forever part of a whole means that we always know that every question has an answer, that the left fork of the road eventually leads to the same place as the right fork, that parallel lines eventually intersect. In other words, there’s nothing we can do ultimately, to shift the cosmic balance because all the opposites flow from and back again into the same source.
Eastern mysticism advises us to be the observer of all these polarities, to simply be the witness from a whole brain perspective, rather than getting tossed about by the “this” or “that” of life. What can we experience? Peace, calm, tranquility.
Trying to escape or resist the tip of the scales one way or the other can only make us suffer. Life’s like that. As soon as the Moon reaches full, it begins to wane. As soon as night falls, daylight begins to approach. As soon as someone is born, death is inevitable…
WALK INTO AN UNTOUCHED OLD GROWTH FOREST
ON A WARM SPRING DAY.
Beauty surrounds you. Exhilarating fragrances from blossoms and tree resins ripple through the clean air. With each step you take, your foot rebounds, pleasantly cushioned by the duff underfoot. You occasionally witness some scat, testament to the presence of one or another of the forest’s animal denizens. Birds call from the tree branches and a brook babbles nearby,
but the overall effect is of deep silence, unfathomable stillness…
Unless you’ve been conditioned to respond favorably to only the sounds of traffic and machinery (some people have), all your senses are quickly involved in a way that makes you relax deeply. The overall experience is of loveliness. The fact that millions of fallen leaves are rotting on the forest floor doesn’t even come to mind. There’s no stench. The animal scat laid down fresh every day isn’t obnoxious. You are experiencing balance.
If you’re quiet enough and lucky enough to see a Mountain lion with a full belly stroll past a couple of deer or a brush rabbit, you’ll witness the balance in a different way. No animosity—or even alarm—is registered by deer or rabbit. The lion is a hunter, not a murderer. It doesn’t kill for hatred – or who knows, even pleasure – just to survive.
UNDER THE SIGN OF LIBRA WE FIND PEOPLE WHO ARE LEARNING A PARTICULAR LESSON IN LIFE--
how to gain conscious control over the nervous system; intentionally going into the eye of life’s hurricane in all circumstances. With the other signs, it’s more or less a built in feature, just like the flow of nature in an old growth forest; but Libra is living the challenge of taking balance off autopilot and doing it manually.
WHAT’S THE POINT,
you might wonder? Well, think about it for a moment. Even if the majority of us can keep our cool, going through life reasonably well most of the time, there are times when, regardless of our best intentions, we get thrown off. Conflicts arise, misunderstandings happen, tempers flare and rudeness can escalate (in the worst cases, to violence) no matter how well-bred we might be. It just happens. “Shit happens,” as the saying goes.
HERE’S WHERE THE GODDESS OF JUSTICE COMES IN
Sometimes the Goddess of Justice, represented blindfolded, holding the scales of justice in her hands is also associate with Libra.
An impartial verdict is what the blindfold represents. Don’t you think this influence is absolutely essential to our race of hypersensitive monkeys with big brains, tons of technology and over/undersized egos? We need people who have intentionally learned to stay at point of equilibrium when emotions go careening in a mad roller coaster ride from love to hate; from horror and disgust to pity and then back again. We need mediators, artists, musicians, peacekeepers, to remind us of the beauty in life and the value of courtesy and respect in resolving our differences. To calm us down.
Think, “Gandhi” here. Mahatma Gandhi’s chart shows a Libra Sun and Ascendant, Leo Moon. In the book, “Think And Grow Rich” (1937), Napoleon Hill had this to say about him.
“Perhaps the majority of those who have heard of Gandhi look upon him as merely an eccentric little man, who goes around without formal wearing apparel, and makes trouble for the British government.
In reality, Gandhi is not eccentric, but HE IS THE MOST POWERFUL MAN NOW LIVING… Moreover, he is probably the most powerful man who has ever lived. His power is passive, but it is real…
In brief, Gandhi has accomplished a MIRACLE, for it is a miracle when two hundred million people can be induced—not forced—to cooperate in a spirit of HARMONY, for a limitless time. If you doubt that this is a miracle, try to induce ANY TWO PEOPLE to cooperate in a spirit of harmony for any length of time.”
EVER TRIED TO RESOLVE A DISAGREEMENT WITHOUT RESPECTING THE OTHER PERSON’S POINT OF VIEW?
Ever tried to “teach” someone to “do better” by pouring your hot-lava-anger all over them? Ever tried to use blame to get someone to “fess up?” Every tried to move away from a failed relationship without forgiveness?
Doesn’t work, does it? The Libran point of view is essential.
MY LIBRA BROTHER’S WEDDING BROUGHT THE FAMILY TOGETHER
In an extended family like ours which tends to live scattered across International boundaries (both physically and philosophically), I couldn’t help but notice that it was my Libra brother’s wedding that almost everyone made it to. It was much more than a wedding. It seemed to me like our first real family re-union in many, many years. My bro didn’t really work on trying to get us all there. He just seemed to have the lifestyle and natural graciousness that attracted everybody who could come. I could see how a Libran can tend to be a cornerstone of a family or community relationship network.
LIBRA SEEKS—AND NEEDS—HARMONY,
balance, peace and calm, equilibrium. Libra’s natural way is courtesy and respect for the “Other.” knowing that the “Other” is always another aspect of your own Whole Self; knowing that relationship is one of the most powerful ways to grow. This sensibility lends itself to artistic expression too. The relationships of sounds in music can create literal harmony (or dissonance). Color and form in visual arts can have the same impact on the senses as nature, soothing and calming. In situations where people can’t agree on any philosophy, they still respond to communication through the arts, through symbolic representations of feelings that don’t confront the ego head on.
It is difficult
to get the news
yet men die miserably every day
of what is found there
— William Carlos Williams
We all have Libra somewhere in our charts in varying degrees of influence; but possibly more than any other sign, Libra, the Lover, needs relationships in order to grow. Relationships for Libra can be a super-intensive learning experience. What might be a more or less straight forward matter of getting along—or not—for most of us, turns out to be an extraordinary labyrinth of complex considerations for Libra.
By nature, Libra is compelled to carefully examine all aspects of an interaction, not only from their own, but the Other’s point of view; and the more people involved the more considerations…yikes! I can’t even think about it without getting a migraine! Libra’s goal, of course, is to create harmony by any means possible. Sounds like the perfect partner, doesn’t it? And could very well be; but so as to keep a balanced perspective, what could go wrong in all of this harmony?
There’s something we learned in the sign of Virgo that can stand us in good stead now. Too much goodness can be as much of a problem as the outright bad stuff people do.
Too much harmony is where Libra can get lost.
Tolerating the “Other’s” idiosyncrasies, leaning to the other side to keep the boat balanced, those are Libra’s great natural tendencies; but they can also easily lead to just keeping up appearances and skirting the unpleasant issues involved in working out relationships. Libra can lose sight of the fact that painful confrontations are often the trigger to deepening a relationship. A Libra can completely lose their own center of gravity and spend life revolving around the demands of their partner. Some painful things do resolve themselves eventually without anything being done about it; BUT SOME WILL NOT.
WHEN YOUR GOAL IS HARMONY,
it’s easy to forget that dissonance is the other half of the equation. Venus isn’t known for her beguiling ways for no reason. Harmony, for good or evil, is seductive. Consider two drunks on a binge. They are in harmony about having the next…and the next…drink. How about the high school sweethearts who to stay together “because of the kids” though they’ve long since outgrown the relationship? Or a hetero couple who secretly knows deep down that one of them is really gay?
Wouldn’t some good honest conflict be helpful here?
THAT GODDESS OF JUSTICE…
as goddesses have been known to do, can sometimes peek out under that blindfold while the scales are being loaded. Then, even when the scales balance, it’s “Oops, a pinch more for the other side,” then, “Just one more for the other… and the other…” It’s very difficult to be the one who takes the heat from both parties when the verdict doesn’t favor either one completely; somehow that “measuring process” can go, and on, and on, and on…. When you consider that both, Mahatma Gandhi and John Lennon (Libra Sun, Aries Asc., Aquarius Moon), were murdered for the stand they took, you can see why a Libran might be tempted to manipulate a verdict.
WHY BOTHER MAKING CHOICES?
Why not just comply? Or manipulate the situation. It’s so much easier, isn’t it? A little voice inside every Libra tends to presents these questions. Meanwhile the clock on the mantelpiece “taps it’s toe,” eyebrow raised, saying, “Well…?”
Much better to take the heat in small doses than end up with a volcanic explosion that buries the whole town. Or make your decision by just dying. (Then there’s something about reincarnation and doing it all over again… but some Librans would just rather go to Hell and get it “over with” than make a decision or committ to a relationship.)
We all know too about the arts making powerful statements to confront cultural complacency, like the first performance of Stravinsky’s “Rite of Spring.” It caused riots in Paris. TOUGH SPOT TO BE IN!
BUT WHEN LIBRA DOES GET IT RIGHT, IMAGINE THE BLISS…
functional relationships! magnificent works of art, powerful music, dance and drama, social events with grace, lush beautiful landscapes surrounding us, time for personal rest and relaxation, true diplomacy among nations, peace and prosperity (most of the time.)
And to be completely FAIR… as one very astute Libra Lady once pointed out to me, there truly are some situations in which there really is no clear answer!
And herein lies another of Libra’s attributes—the ability to tolerate paradox. We don’t always have to have a clear answer. Sometimes it’s most desirable not to, as in the case of issues such as religion which may best be left to a personal experience.
A Time for Everything
1 There is a time for everything,
and a season for every activity under heaven:
2 a time to be born and a time to die,
a time to plant and a time to uproot,
3 a time to kill and a time to heal,
a time to tear down and a time to build,
4 a time to weep and a time to laugh,
a time to mourn and a time to dance,
5 a time to scatter stones and a time to gather them,
a time to embrace and a time to refrain,
6 a time to search and a time to give up,
a time to keep and a time to throw away,
7 a time to tear and a time to mend,
a time to be silent and a time to speak,
8 a time to love and a time to hate,
a time for war and a time for peace.
— Ecclesiastes 3 (New International Version)
New International Version (NIV)
Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 by International Bible Society
[NIV at IBS] [International Bible Society] [NIV at Zondervan] [Zondervan]