Alchemy. Solstice. Tantra.
This weekend’s Solstice eclipse marks a powerful moment of sacred marriage, or the reunification of all opposites.
The sun and moon will appear as one.
I am not an astrologer...
But as a Contemplative Mythologist, Psychologist, and Yogini, I celebrate the rich symbolism of this weekend’s stellar events as an invitation to honor the Father archetype.
PREFER TO LISTEN?
The Marriage of the Sun & Moon
Much of my work–study and teaching–draws from the symbolism of esoteric alchemy because these images and rituals are foundational to the mystic spirituality of both Western and Eastern religions. The alchemical process is one by which the finite and infinite aspects of reality are differentiated and purified so that they might be fully recognized. Then those elements are consciously reunited so that, together, they create something new.
In esoteric alchemy, the MOON is the symbol of the feminine principle: the queen, the egg and womb–the Mother. The SUN is a symbol of the masculine principle. It is the king, the seed–the Father.
The alchemical process is a symbolic marriage of everything that is considered opposite. For the Deep Psychologist in me, this means the reunion of conscious and unconscious contents of your psyche (or your ego and your soul.) This alchemical process means gathering up all the projections that you spill onto the world around you, to recognize them as aspects of your own mind.
This alchemical narrative (the marriage of the sun & moon) is echoed in the teachings and practices of Tantrik Yoga. In Tantra mythology, the merging of duality is envisioned as the sacred marriage of Shiva and Shakti (the Infinite Potential and Creative Power, respectively). It is a story about the coordination of body and spirit, the harmonization of God, Nature, and Humanity. It is the sacred marriage of subject and object…the reconciliation of “Self” and “Other.”
You are called to recognize the finite and infinite aspects of who you are: your body, mind, and spirit. You are invited to know your Self as whole…to remember your entire being as an expression of the Creative Source of Life. That realization gives birth to a whole new way of Being in the world: an awakening to your infinite potential and, ultimately, a recognition of God/dess. By "God/dess," I mean "the essence of God in all things."
By "God/dess," I mean “the essence of God in all things.”
"God/dess" Does Not Mean "Woman"
These days I share a lot of God/dess teachings because, from where I sit, our culture is seriously lacking in its recognition of “the essence of God in all things.” I see a ton of disrespect going around–toward Nature, our bodies, and each other. There seems to be a deficit of qualities that history has attributed to the feminine principle: unconditional compassion, courageous interconnection, a balanced celebration of uniqueness and equality.
But I want to make it very clear that what I consider God/dess teachings are not necessarily teachings about women, women’s rights, or female activism. While that is, in itself, a valuable and necessary topic–one that naturally tends to follow Tantrik teachings–the conversation around God/dess is a conversation about the sacredness in the human experience at large. It is an invitation to all people…no matter how you identify in gender, sex, nationality, race, class, or religion…to realize the essence of God in all things…to remember the intrinsic value of LIFE itself, to honor the divine spirit that animates Nature…and to recognize the significance of relationship.
This weekend, we celebrate the Summer Solstice as the fullest expression of the sun. I’m also thinking about the Solar principles that have been associated with the Father archetype–that penetrating power that plants new seeds. That piercing wisdom that leads to clear vision and decisive action…and a keen balance of discipline and freedom. With all the God/dess talk in our spiritual communities, it is more important than ever to celebrate the value of the FATHER in this equation of one + one = ONE.
During the annular eclipse the sun will appear (in some places) like a vibrant ring around the new moon. I will be contemplating this cosmic artwork as a poetic representation of the Father’s radiant embrace. Our culture needs conscious fathers as much as we need powerful mothers. We need the Father to exemplify awakened consciousness. We need him to be a beacon of strength and flexibility...a role model of the courage found in true compassion; and the balanced expression of humility and dignity.
We need the Father to exemplify awakened consciousness:
We need him to be a beacon of strength and flexibility...
A role model of the courage found in true compassion,
and the balanced expression of humility and dignity.
I am grateful to all the fathers who claim their responsibility in remembrance of God/dess. To all those fathers who rise as heroes to realize beauty, equality, and reunification. To all of you who have been knocked down again and again…to you who rise again and again, to remember the essence of God in all things.
THANK YOU, DADS.
solstice. tantra. archetypes.
Read more on these topics.
About The Author
R.R. Shakti, PhD
Founding teacher of Inner Power Yoga®, Shakti is a Contemplative Mythologist, ritual facilitator, and writer who presents a Tantrik approach to personal empowerment and social action. Through contemplative story-telling and mind/body practices, she offers a vision of deep peace and radical freedom.
PSYCHE + SOUL