All beauty is a manifestation of the Divine.
All beauty is a manifestation of the Divine.
A well-known Hopi saying goes like this: "Beauty before me, beauty behind me, beauty to my left, beauty to my right, beauty above me, beauty below me. I'm on the pollen path [of bliss and unity]." The whole thrust of such a mantra (a focused point of inward concentration) is to cultivate and open our senses, in this case to the pervasive beauty that permeates all life. When a person's consciousness becomes so beauty porous, whether through delicate form, color, sound, fragrance, harmonious rhythm, or the imagination, then his or her external reality reflects this inner state of loveliness. The longing to glimpse the Source, and thus attempt to create an ideal of beauty and perfection on earth, comes under the dominion of elusive Neptune.
As lord of the seas, Neptune is considered a planet of higher vibration (a more sublime manifestation of Venus) and so tends to be a collective, evolutionary influence that helps to deepen our artistic, intuitive, and spiritual faculties. These refined abilities, however, are seldom attained without sacrifice and surrender of personal conditions that have outlived their time and worth. Described as the "cosmic eraser," Neptune works not in a direct, forceful way but rather via a low-key, gradual, undermining process that slowly wears away and dissolves forms, structures, irksome habits, and those circumstances that appear to be real and lasting. Its perennial message is to instill the law of impermanence—to be softly in the world but not of it. Its impulse beckons us to mystical horizons and the vast, formless dimension of our origin and safe return.
Illusive Neptune thrives on ambiguity and paradox. It muddles and blurs boundaries, confuses our gullible mind between fact and fantasy, and beguiles our human sensibilities. It tweaks our discontent. When under Neptune's wide-open influence, our magical thinking delights in cloaking things we choose not to see or accept. At its worst, we can too easily drift, flounder, scheme, and become self-indulgent when in the grip of this deceptive influence. Thus, some restlessly seek the glamour of a guru; others anesthetize themselves with drink or self-destructive drugs or escape in co-dependent relationships, while another sinks into oblivion or emotional instability. As the master of disguises, the extremes of expression that are possible, while within the precinct of Neptune, clearly show that its slippery, intangible energy is neither straightforward nor comfortable to handle on the earthly level!
Ethereal Neptune is a feminine energy (like the Moon and Venus), representing the part of our nature that yearns to bond deeply and unite with others and ultimately with God. This soulful ache to blend with something other or greater than our self naturally harkens back to the watery memory within our mother's womb and further still to the cosmic womb of Great Mother. In this sense, Neptune's symbiotic function can be likened to a divine umbilical cord that faithfully nurtures and spiritually sustains our life, all the while keeping intact our support system to the Wholeness of life.
If we would take full advantage of Neptune's blessed gifts, we must let go of our sense of personal identity and separateness. Neptune acts by "deconditioning," a temporary but often overwhelming process of non-atttachment, which can feel terrifying and paralyzing whilst our egocentric control liquefies into psychic quicksand. Our relinquishments are not without their exquisite compensations, because as our boundaries become radiantly permeable, it becomes possible to experience self-forgetfulness, compassion, devotion, a pure intent to serve, unconditional love, creative inspiration, clear vision, and spiritual rapture. As the veils thin, we encounter our true undivided nature, which then pervades our aura with a glowing quality of timeless Beauty which passeth all understanding. By remembering who we are, there is a full realization of God in us and us in God. On the outer level of life, this transcendent state of being corresponds to Neptune's almost perfectly circular orbit!
At its highest, Neptune signifies our spiritual calling and the creative stream of the Universe into which our souls can tap. Mother Teresa is such an embodiment of the beautiful inspiration of Neptune that flows through one who attains to selfless humility. Emptied of her outer self, she put it simply, "I am only a pencil in the hands of God. But it is He who writes." In her natal chart, Mother Teresa had Neptune in Cancer in the 8th house (the natural zone of Scorpio). This house relates to irrevocable changes and therefore is the place of non-attachment, as well as where we are in tune with images, ciphers, and the inner worlds. She would naturally possess a more than normal "leaky membrane" with Neptune, ruler of the oceans, in both a water sign and water house, wherein this planet would be blissfully content. Hers would have been the heightened sensitivity of being at one with life and with others, especially in simpatico with their acute suffering and aloneness. And we know, too, that she struggled mightily with her own inner, tormenting demons that tested her faith to the maximum. Yet she had the ability to universalize her daily life through service and her spiritual calling.
On the day of her death, September 5, 1997, transiting Neptune was exactly inconjunct her natal Pluto, a planet that is frequently activated at the time of death. Ancient astrologers called the troublesome inconjunct the "most pernicious of aspects," in part due to its association with strain and internal tension. Transiting Neptune contacting her natal Pluto in an unfortunate and perilous way shows the weakening of her vital spirit and the final dissolution of her physical life. Neptune was also retrograde at the time, an indicator of a return to a previous condition (her history of chronic heart disease) or the possibility of something happening suddenly (heart failure that took her life).
Moreover, her progressed Sun was at 29° Scorpio, the sign associated with initiation, death, and regeneration to a higher order of functioning. The 29th degree of any sign—termed a "critical degree"—represents a completion and a crucial testing of what has been mastered of the sign's principal lessons, in this case the lessons of Scorpio. Learning how to fully let go, merge with another soul, and lose all sense of individuality are some of the training when Scorpio is emphasized. Though the flame of her physical life dimmed and then darkened, her spiritual legacy and light burns brightly as a Neptunian beacon of faith and hope.
While Mother Teresa considered herself to be "God's pencil," there are many paths available to become a Neptunian instrument of God within our own capacity. This planetary influence is associated with great artistic, poetic, musical, dancing, photographic, and cinematographic genius. Neptune's magical number seven symbolizes the point of equilibrium and utter stillness, the place of silence whereby we can access this inner circuitry of creativity and interconnectedness. Surely, it is only when our soul is imbued with beauty from the higher spheres that we can in like measure create enduring works of art, in whatever form that may take, and live as though our everyday life is undeniably a pearl beyond price. To the degree in which we respond to Neptune's inspiration and assurance, we increase both on earth. In his flawless way, White Eagle sums it up precisely, "When a soul can see beauty in all things it is very near to the art of true living, to the center, or the heart of God. All the windows of the soul are opened."
© Zane Maser 2008.
This article was published in Drumbeat, Journal of the White Eagle Lodge (Canada), Volume 16, Issue 2, pages 8-10 (2008).
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