Every life comes from a silence so profound,
we stand in awe,
Photo credit : Jonathan Allin
Sometimes out there in daily life there seems to be so much noise. I am always aware of a deeper silence, of a hidden underworld which lies beneath this daily surface of noise and meaningless activity. As I write the image that comes to me is of an underground river that flows beneath the surface of our lives, that has hidden currents and eddies of which we, so often remain unaware. When I am in the world I am listening to you with my ears but at a deeper level there is another listening and attention awareness going on. I am immersed in the subtext
I struggled a lot as an older child and youngster, with feeling that I did not fit in. That I was awkward, different and had a difficult time connecting with others. And, as I look back, a lot of it related to what I have been trying to express in the first paragraph. The other day I was looking through some notes I had made from a book and when I turned over the page which I was using as notepaper I started reading words which, I now realise were part of a book I was trying to write in my newly sober life to make sense of my past and express what I had been through. I came across the following paragraph:
What was this deep underground cavern that opened up to me at times, a world of vague images and fleeting glimpses into another world more real than the waking reality I faced daily. I do not have an answer though I have quested and questioned the reasons why, finding answers at times only to later be brought to a place where all my findings had to be released in order for me to move forward and grow. Perhaps this is my destiny. I will never be able to grab onto and hold firmly to reality rather experiences, intimations and echoes swill swirl in and out of consciousness, presenting me with vignettes within dreams which coalesce into feelings and emotions that awaken me. None of which I can really share but must encounter alone, in the depths of my being.
I found relationships difficult. I knew that much. Entering into relationships for me always seemed to mean that I moved away from myself into a world that was not of my choosing, one that was a foreign land and held little interest for me. The interesting world took place, I guess more in another world, of imagination and of creative imaginings, of theatre, of music, of art, of literature, of films and the of inner poetry I heard at times which awakened me on a level no relationship seemed able to do. And the sad thing was that for my father and family none of this was real. It was of no practical use at all. Fitted for an artistic career I was urged away from it. And today I have been reading that this is not unusual for someone with Neptune in square to my ascendant.
I was lucky at a young age to be drawn towards astrology, sensing in this world a language of energy that made sense of what I was experiencing. I have a chart very strong in outer planet energy and, especially Neptune. With my own Mercury square to natal Neptune in Scorpio in the third house of communications it was natural to me that I would be drawn to the things I was drawn to. But the difficult thing was, no one much around me was interested in it. The price of fitting in, always seemed to result in the tearing away from or loss of the inner creative life so precious to myself, but undervalued by others. With strong personal and relationship planets bonded tightly to the South Node in Aquarius in my seventh house I felt constantly dragged back to relationships that did not assist or nurture my birth. The polarity point is Leo in the first, my expressive, dramatic self, that was problematic for others, and actively shamed throughout my life.
I feel I am contemplating this all very deeply at the moment as Mars moves forward less than a degree away from my natal Neptune and in square to all my personal planets in the seventh house, as well as the Nodes and first house. I have been experiencing a lot of dissatisfaction with this transit. Reading about this transit this morning I noticed that it is the best time for artistic expression, and the worst time for dealing with practical matters. For me, a rainy day today gives me the time I need to be inward, to explore the net, to write to rest, to contemplate and yes to dream. To enter the world of stories and images that speak to my soul and make me feel more alive and full. And the problem for me comes, when I judge myself for this, for my relationships failing, for my lack of a career, for my lack of outward achievement. I want to take a gun to the critics head and blow her away. She is an introject of my father and mother’s voices.
I don’t usually spend a lot of time exploring other people’s Facebook pages, but for some reason today I found my ex husband’s Facebook page. He is a very creative person and had a gorgeous image on the cover of himself and his daughter which heads up this blog. It didn’t take me very long to move back towards a judgement of myself for everything not working out for us. And mostly for myself, never having been able to come to terms with becoming a parent. I aborted a child in the very early days of our marriage as I was newly sober and did not feel equipped to deal with parenthood. I now know this hurt my husband deeply. Within a short time of our separation he was re-partnered with a more stable partner and within a short time they had a child. Exploring his page I began to feel a deep sense of inadequacy for all my failings in this relationship. Its not new territory this. I am aware that Mercury is around 5 degrees Virgo at the moment, and so squaring natal Chiron in the seventh. The Achilles heel of my failed relationships can start to hurt when I move into a lack of acceptance of what occurred in the past to tear us apart,. And I must accept it has all been a a part of my journey. I was not truly suited for this relationship and I was impoverished on some level as a person. I could not summon the necessary muscle to separate and grown until the past had been addressed and so it ended, when Mars went onto my North Node in Leo in the first house.
Part of our separation, beside the child issue was that I wanted to deepen into my recovery and bring to birth more fully the creative child in me. I wanted to work through all of the splitting that occurred as a part of growing up, not seen, not valued, not mirrored, not helped to blossom and unfold. Addiction claimed me as a young adult because I could not find my way into my creative self. Recovery showed me the split and that I wanted to heal it. To move away from the false adapted self. And it seemed there was a mine of pain to pass through in order to go through that transition, as it left me, finally completely alone and very close to breakdown, since my husband wanted something else.
That was ten long years ago and as I said, there was an ocean of tears to cry, of pain to heal, of splitting to repair. I started to write. A lot. I had always written throughout my life. And I now see that during this phase I began the protracted labour of coming to birth. Over these years of recovery, have been finding the way back to the child that I lost so long ago, the one that was hidden, unnurtured and undeveloped deep inside of the false self that had to crack open. There was pain in the breaking open because that pain is the price of rebirth, of transformation, I see that now. It was a whole body thing. I could never in a blog describe it. It is a deeply soulful process in any case. It was one that I received confirmation from in the writings of Jungians such as Marion Woodman and Clarissa Pinkola Estes. I write about it in this next excerpt from my book:
Strongly, at times, I am in the grip of a peaceful ecstasy that is difficult to describe. With a sense of being supported from a deep space that is almost incommunicable. The journey that I have been travelling over these past few years has been long, punctuated with periods of self annihilating anguish that has rendered me incoherent and deeply aware of my powerlessness and lack of centre. In these spaces my emotional reality is shown to me case into clear relief by the intensity of my despair The cloud I have been sailing on collapses and I fall harshly to a stony landscape littered with withered corpses, dreams, potentials, and promises I could not live. I am alone in an emptiness that echoes with memories. Today I am broken into many fragments that will not reassemble at my will. My edges are being knocked off. I am being rounded by a force over which I have no control and to which I have no desire to surrender. Though this is what I must do. And yet sometimes I am caught by surprise as a conscious observer watches and I let go of something I seemed bound to only days before. And so I travel from day to day giving up the intention of arriving at a destination and learning to appreciate each gift that I receive along the way. Some gifts come in the strangest wrapping. And it takes time to unpack the meaning. And so my judgements are surrendered little by little to this new way of living.
During this time I was in the midst of a prolonged Neptune transit to all of my personal planets. Today being out the other side I see it as a deeply liminal time, necessary to my evolution as a person. So much of it happened in deep silence. Others lives went on while mine was in developmental gestation. On some level I was being refashioned and reshaped. And as Mars closes towards exact conjunction with Neptune I am reminded of this period. I am in a deep sea or ocean and being cradled as the gentle rain falls outside. I don’t want to justify my existence by having to be seen to be doing, when really I feel, being should be enough. Alone I can rest inside the eternal now that around me is unfolding in a succession of moments that leads on to the next present moment. I find it hard to make any plans these days, plans take me out of the timelessness of this present moment, And yet I also realise the need humans have to make plans. 3
Other people have what they need
I alone possess nothing
I alone drift about
like someone without a horse
I am an idiot
My mind is empty
Other people are bright
I alone am dark
Other people are sharp
I alone am dull
Other people have a purpose
I alone don’t know
I drift like a wave on the ocean
I blow as aimless as the wind
I am different from ordinary people
I drink from the Great Mother’s breasts
I would not have the hubris to say I am different from ordinary people but on some deep level these word from the Tao Te Ching resonate deeply with me. And seem apt for a day of Mars passing close to Neptune. For today am content to drift.