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Zane Maser

…the air we breath, the thoughts we think, the God so close-these sustain us.
What we wish to be we become.
Where we want to go, we go.

White Eagle

If we consider the 12 signs of the zodiac, Capricorn is perhaps one of the signs that best exemplifies the power of patience, persistence, and single-mindedness needed to attain the potential of focused effort, no matter what the unswerving attention is riveted on, be it a red rose in nature or in meditation, writing a book, or performing a complex scientific experiment. Focused effort can be considered virtually synonymous with the power of thought control.

Some of Capricorn's most well-known, positive qualities of character are endurance, conscientiousness, tenacity, concentration, depth of purpose, diligence, thoroughness, hardworking, strength of will, trustworthiness, commitment, and loyalty. Capricorn, as an earth sign willing to expend its energy on long-term labor, possesses the ability to condense its efforts in tireless stamina, coupled with an intense desire for achievement. It is the sign of the sure-footed mountain goat that will struggle, keep on, outlast, and eventually reach the pinnacle of the mountaintops, for the goat knows how to use time wisely as a trusted ally. All obstacles and setbacks only enhance the goat's unflagging perseverance. It is fitting that this sign also rules the highest point or 'Midheaven' of the chart. Carolyn Myss describes this house as one's 'highest potential.' Remember, too, each of us has Capricorn on the cusp of one of our 12 houses. Wherever this falls in your natal chart that is where you can apply the power and potential of the Capricorn energy to those specific affairs and issues of your life.

One of the best ways to learn about Capricorn's resolute steadfastness is to study the biographies of famous persons who had this sign strongly emphasized in their make-up and thus in their life. Louis Pasteur, a brilliant academic and one of the greatest scientists ever, had 6 planets (which includes his Sun) in Capricorn, all in the 3rd house in his natal chart. This is an extremely powerful planetary configuration in an extremely powerful sign. By studying his birth chart and how the energy of Capricorn played out over the course of his life, one learns how our astrology can become our biography and how a crystal clear focus can be the platform for immense attainment in a given lifetime. The living mantra of Pasteur's thoughts was described when he wrote, 'I constantly felt the sacred fire of science burning ever brighter in my heart….'

Capricorn's success comes from the notable ability to disregard the non-essential by setting its sights on the intended goal or prize and then slowly but surely realizing its considerable ambitions. And the good and sobering news for all of us is that we cannot escape the results of our constant focus, for what we concentrate on is how we imagine, create, and spend our lives. 'Thought power [focus power],' according to White Eagle, 'is the greatest power in life.' Young Louis Pasteur received training in the power and potential of focus from a very early age when he grew up with a father who had this maxim on his tannery account book: 'Never think about anything but what you are doing at the time.' White Eagle would likewise say do one thing at a time with such undivided attention that you are continually practicing the present moment and thus experiencing the Divine as an abiding constant. According to your focus, so shall it be done unto you.

At the age of 17, when he was in his final year of secondary school and devoting all his energy to studying, the serious Pasteur wrote to his father, 'Once one is used to working, one can no longer live without it. And of course, everything in the world depends on it; in science, one is happy; in science one rises above all others.' This was his early template that crystallized all his indefatigable energies towards his intended ascent, which made him a giant among the scientific pioneers of his day. One of his famous sayings was 'luck favors those who are prepared'—a perfect motto for Capricorn! Pasteur was said to be endowed with exceptional courage and fierce determination and 'he could not and would not be defeated. He never would give up.' He appeared to be incapable of not forging ahead in spite of all odds. He, too, had his full share of delays, restraints, and failures, but they only made him more industrious and relentless as he expended all his talent on the current task. His vision, combined with an innate wisdom about timing, was always focused on the mastery and rigorous precision he needed to climb the steep slope of scientific endeavor whose heights he would one day dominate as a legend.

Pasteur's remarkable life of staggering productivity moved from the self-disciplined but mediocre schoolwork of a reserved boy not outwardly gifted with native intelligence, to his initial studies in crystallography, which laid the foundation for his life-long curiosity with the cellular building blocks of life, to the study of yeasts and the diseases of the French wine and silkworm industries, to his successful unraveling of the mysteries and treatment with the new concept of vaccination for the deadly anthrax and rabies diseases, and to the final capstone of his indomitable willpower that oversaw the building of his prestigious, influential 'Institut Pasteur.' The tentacles of this coveted place to do research eventually created a global network of leading-edge scientific and medical discoveries. In fact, the creation and funding of the Institut made Pasteur the world's first scientist to become a highly successful enterprise—another apt outcome for Capricorn. He knew that if his willpower and work showed 'patience when the task is long' that success would crown his achievements, and in his case, these went worldwide and well into the future.

To read about the life of Pasteur with his search for excellence and his strong sense of purpose is to read a classic textbook description of Capricorn and what can be accomplished when a person directs all his or her resources towards a desired end, because focus begets focus begets empowerment. And Capricorn is a sign that loves power and prestige. Pasteur, accordingly, was able to center his thoughts, time, and energy in such a way that, over the course of his lifetime of dedicated work, he became the chief architect that triggered a scientific and medical revolution that redesigned the landscape of both science and medicine while creating entirely new disciplines, such as bacteriology, microbiology, and immunology. This renowned scientist opened new frontiers and literally changed the face of his world to a far, far healthier place. Now, more than a century later, we live with the consequences of the many medical and scientific advances he fostered. "But to whatever life will have favored your efforts," wrote Pasteur, "when you approach the great goal, you must be able to say to yourself:  'I have done my best.'"

© Zane Maser 2002.
This article was published in Drumbeat, Journal of the White Eagle Lodge (Canada), Volume 10, Issue 2, pages12-14 (2002).

For more information, visit The White Eagle Lodge, Canada


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