RAMBLING ALONE THROUGH VIRGO
WE entered the season of Virgo on August 23. The traditional symbol for this astrology sign is a woman in a long dress holding a sheaf of wheat… sometimes she is depicted with wings, but she is not an angel, nor is she necessarily a “virgin” in our common sense of the word. She represents self-sufficiency and refined self-discipline, not chastity.
In ancient times the word virgin simply meant a person (male or female) who was ‘whole in his or her self.’ This did not mean they had no committed relationship or were loners without friends or a social life. They might or might not choose to live singly; get married; have sexual relationships; or bear children and raise a family.
They could do any and all of these things, yet without a yearning need to see their relationship as pivotal for achieving their dream; crucial for their self-esteem. They may seek another for encouragement in accomplishing personal goals. They may well share their troubles and successes with a loving partner and family. But their core strength to persevere and succeed comes from within themselves, from their private spiritual place.
In other words, this is a person who was strong on their own, needing no other to make them “complete” … as in the modern romantic or religious notion that we need a marriage partner or some surrogate ‘other’ in order to be fulfilled in life.
This pervasive notion of Western culture has created a population of people who are forever searching for their perfect ‘soul mate’ or ‘true love’ or ‘life companion’. We have become a population of malcontents, feeling cheated by life when such a magical idealized relationship fails to arrive and survive through life’s ups and downs.
The desire for love and the wish to bond with one special other are not wrong or bad notions in themselves. Indeed, quite a few fortunate people do manage to find that other soul who complements their personal nature in such a way that fulfills each of them. And this is wonderful. They are blessed in love and all that it can bring of both joy and sorrow to their lives.
Yet a good many others never do discover such lasting love. These folks may feel ‘unfulfilled’ in life regardless of any number of other wonderful experiences and successes life brings them along the way. They may forever feel ‘empty;’ ‘lost’; ‘lonely’; or even ‘a failure’.
Indeed, it is hard to avoid this merry-go-round of searching for the elusive Perfect One… we seek happiness, comfort, a safe haven… we seek our cocoon… the womb into which we can crawl and hide from life’s more difficult choices and painful experiences… in the shelter of another person’s love.
In so doing we may fail to grow. We can miss our maturity and escape our potential wisdom that facing and enduring those trials and tribulations on our own might have brought. Inwardly we remain as ignorant and helpless as children even while we perform, outwardly, some role of power and dignity in the outer world. Inside, we hide our true spirit and never break loose of the metaphysical umbilicus to fly on our own.
The season of Virgo reminds us that life is more than a romantic yearning for perfect happiness. Virgo’s energy calls us to self-examination and re-organization of our affairs both inwardly and outwardly. Ultimately Virgo is a season for cleansing and healing through service to the larger world community. It is a time to put aside small personal desires and dedicate our efforts to serve the higher purposes of cleansing and healing our world and the earth on which we all live.
(NOTEJ For a more detailed examination of the season of Virgo, check out “Mythic Moments” tab at the top of this page.)