1. the manner in which one conducts or carries oneself, including posture and gestures: a person of dignified bearing.
2. the act, capability, or period of producing or bringing forth.
3. something that is produced; a crop.
4. the act of enduring or the capacity to endure.
5. reference or relation (usu. fol. by on): It has no bearing on the problem.
6.a. a supporting part of a structure. b. the area of contact between a bearing member, as a beam, and a pier, wall, or other underlying support.
7. the support and guide for a rotating, oscillating, or sliding shaft, pivot, or wheel.
8. Often, bearings. direction: The pilot radioed the plane’s bearings.
9. a horizontal direction expressed in degrees east or west of a true or magnetic north or south direction.
10. a device on a heraldic field.Random House Kernerman Webster’s College Dictionary, © 2010 K Dictionaries Ltd. Copyright 2005, 1997, 1991 by Random House, Inc. All rights reserved.
Alchemy and Astrology
To explore alchemy without the consideration of astrology, feels incomplete. However, to study the heavens in order to understand the inner process of transformation is yet another journey into the hall of mirrors. The hermetic maxim, “as above, so below” describes the mirroring of all possible polarities within the universe. The Mother Element and the Male Principle are the primary energetic polarities operating within the microcosm of the human body, which affect the microcosm according to their intensities. My “Great Work,” is to use the energy released in the merging of dualities and the flipping of polarities, for alchemical transformation, rather than becoming enamoured with reflections on the pond. Transformation to what? Well, that is very much a work-in-progress and determined by the action we take during incubation.
In this work, there is nothing to be gained by lamenting the lost wisdom of the ancients, as most of it is of no use today. Secret teachings may be revealed and mysteries decoded and in this process, as with everything else, it is self-discovery through application that matters most. Our Great Mother is awake and lucid in Her dream and working Her magic – as if the defect had never been.
As regards astrology, I find the ´story´ that unfolds around the Pole Star to be highly significant.
The Pole Star
The current Pole Star, Polaris, is located in the tail of Ursa Minor, the Little Bear, aka the Little Dipper. If you know English, you might get a tickle from the tail/tale homonym, but bears don’t have tails in any language – unless they are embryos.
The site Constellations of Words, offers these comments on the development of baby bears, but it could just as easily be referring to human development.
“Ursa Minor is the Little Bear, Arcas, son of the Great Mother Bear, Ursa Major. Little bear cubs are born very small, about 500th of the mother’s weight, and in legend it was believed that it was born as a shapeless lump of flesh, and the mother bear (Ursa Major) completes the work of gestation by licking the foetus into its proper form, the origin of the expression ‘to lick into shape’; to give proper form to.
When a pregnant female bear begins hibernation, the embryo will attach itself to the uterine wall, and after about eight weeks the cubs will be born while the mother is still in hibernation. In medicine, the developing fertilized ovum is not called an embryo until after the long axis appears [By the Hermetic principle, the World Axis or Tree joins the north celestial pole]. From the end of the second week after fertilization until the end of the eighth week, it is termed an embryo, then it becomes a fetus when its embryonic tail disappears [bears have no tail, a feature of these two bear constellations is that they do have tails, explained by the myth that Jupiter lay hold of the tails of the two bears and lifted them up into the heavens giving them long tails]. Embryonic also has the meaning; “in an initial or rudimentary stage of development”, an in; “an embryonic nation, not yet self-governing”. This might explain why Arcadia, or Arcady, is described in idyllic terms; the ideal land of rustic simplicity – underdeveloped and shapeless – like an embryo perhaps?”Constellations of Words, Ursa Minor
Polaris is said to have moved into Pole position some time in the 5th or 6th century BC, roughly corresponding to the beginning of the European Dark Ages. Before that, so the story goes, it was Thuban, in the constellation of Draco, which was the Pole Star from around 2750BC to 1900BC. The constellation of Draco resembles a spermatozoa, which rings a bell when you consider that the preceding pole star was Vega, a blue egg in the uterine formation of Lyra. The mythological dragon, Draco, guards the golden apples of immortality in the Land of the Hesperides.
It`s not such a leap to see how, in the dreaming mind of the Aeon Sophia, the Constellation of Lyra, became the female reproductive system in physical form.
This motif is as alive today as it was when the Aeon Sophia first dreamed of bringing will to bear upon the generative power of Her earthly body to seed the first humans. We are born immortal. Thuban itself isn’t that interesting, but its close alignment with the celestial north pole was geographically and narratively significant. The Pole Stars were pivotal in early navigation of the globe and in the establishment of longitude. This time period also corresponds to the growth of settlements, agriculture and technology which have, in their particular way, provided a stable environment for the development of the embryonic Luminous Child. To locate Polaris in the night sky, you actually draw a line from what could be viewed as the ovaries of the Great Bear.
Embryonic Collective Consciousness
The Great Bear and Little Bear, mother and child, when viewed at the solstices and equinoxes from a single location, form the symbol of the sacred swastika as they rotate around the Pole Star. The meaning of this symbol is open to question – the Great Mother dreams in geometry, which we perceive as reality, coloured by the meaning we ascribe through our narrative frameworks. To me, this ursine tableau depicts the gestation of human consciousness and shows that, despite the efforts of many wise and courageous souls and the remnants of ancient civilisations to be found, we are collectively in the embryonic stage and moving into the foetal stage.
In the physical gestation of the human embryo, the tail is fully absorbed by the ninth week (63 days) and the heart chambers are also formed. Foetal development of the brain structures begins at the ninth week.
I find a correspondence between the stages of human physical gestation and the gestation of species-wide consciousness, in that we are just beginning to develop heart intelligence and compassion, but self-awareness, as in the knowledge of our true potentials, is as absent as the celestial body in the head of the Little Bear.
However, consciousness is neither static nor time-bound – it is not a fixed thing. Although it looks to me as though human consciousness is just moving from the embryonic to the foetal stage, it does not have to follow a similar chronological development to the biological human foetus – if the conditions are right and the requisite energy is available, consciousness and awareness can change instantly.
Humans are designed to be self-initiating and self-generating, ad infinitum. However, just like the tale of the heavenly bears, it`s something that cannot be objectively proven. Narrative is a tool of the creative imagination, that can be used to inspire, test, know, prove and free yourself, reality, that is both you in the universe and the universe in you, shapes itself to that inner truth. You take a leap and prove your life’s meaning and value, to yourself, every day, every moment. These are testing times for sure, but there is also huge energy available for this work – the scalar energy provided by the collapsing of dualities and meeting of polarities to push up the golden path, the sushumna of our species template. Great work for to anyone who sets out on this path.
The imaginal cells of the human species are the artists, poets, witches, shamans and alchemists, who travel into the unknown to bring back treasures, offered with love and humility.
ADDENDUM: incubation for the next stage of human development began on 14th March 2020.