Saturday, February 23, 2013

Aquarius, the Water Bearer, and Aspiration: Manly Hall

So, here we are at the end of the series of signs of the zodiac and the gifts they bestow, according to Manly Hall.  (For some reason, there is no comment on Pisces!?!)

The gift that Aquarius bestows is Aspiration:  the eternal recognition that the truthseeker desires to build a better world for others.

The danger here is that where there is a virtue, there is an illustion twisted around it.  We often seek to bestow upon others visions which they cannot receive.

We must remember:  that we are working with good children, who cannot know more than they do.

Aspiration must be tied to one's abilities.  We should always aspire to the "next" thing and realize that life is a series of steps.  This teaches us patience and humility, and the mystery of enduring.

There are things which man can do and things which he cannot do.  We can prepare the Gods' way, but we must await their works.

"All conquest must fail unless the conquest is of self."

Capricorn, the Sea Goat: Manly Hall

Capricorn, the Sea Goat, is part fish and part God.  He is the symbol of man's eternal prudence.

Man must forever be mindful of excess, of temperance.  Even a virtue, over-worked, becomes a vice.  For that, Capricorn's gift is the gift of Self-Analysis.

Man must never rise too high, nor fall too low.

Prudence causes man to grow only as fast as he is able to integrate it.

"Never over-estimate yourself; never under-estimate your adversary."

Use what you know to improve yourself in what you do not yet know.

Above all, have faith in yourself.

Monday, February 18, 2013

Sagittarius, Aspiration, Instruction and the Centaur: Manly Hall

The sign of Sagittarius gives us the gift of instruction, or aspiration.  It is the sign of the Centaur, part human and part animal,  part man and part horse, aiming his arrow at the stars.

The three large areas of instruction are religion, philosophy, and science, but the Centaur reminds us that it is Nature that is the true teacher.  We can learn something from every other human being and from all of Nature.

In fact, instruction is the inevitable consequence of man's contact with Nature, whether it is from another human being or the sunset.

All knowledge flows from the fountain of Universal Consciousness. Everything that happens has a meaning, teaching us to become heroes.

Nature is a god with the body of a horse.  Nature teaches us to be both human and divine when we can see the Universal teacher in our own children and in our own friends.

But how shall we know when we have learned.  Socrates says the first prerequisite of learning is to be able to accept reproof.  The individual who is unable to change his own attitudes, who thinks it is more important to remain the same rather than to accept guidance cannot be instructed and has not accepted the gift of the Centaur in the search of the Soul for reality.

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Scorpio and the Secrets of Silence: Manly Hall

Scorpio, represented in the zodiac by the scorpion and the eagle, is in the night house of Mars, and the gift it bestows is the secret of silence.

Scorpio, in its strange, deep, darkness, is the God of silence, for in silence and silence alone all mysteries are solved.

"If 'to be' is silver; to be silent is golden."

More that quitetude is required, however, one must also be still, still and silent.

Silence is the gateway to the internal life, and the ancient mystery rituals were steeped in silence.

"The power to listen is greater than the power to speak.  Who listens learns, who speaks knows only about himself."

God is the infinite Truth abiding in silence.

Our task:  to conquer sound in our own souls.

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Libra, the Balance, ruled by Venus: Manly Hall

Libra, the balance of the scales held by the angel with the blazing sword, reminds us that ours is always a problem of equilibrium.

We must alway keep the balance because the law, justice, is always in the balance.  Virtue is not on one end of the scales and Vice on the other.  Vice is at both ends, and Virtue is in the middle.

The moment man polarizes or unbalances he is unlawful; justice is in all things moderation.

So we must seek always the balance that underlies all of the contending parts.  Justic is in no sense excess or privation.

Man remains true only when he is in balance and is ruled by principle, then all other things will belance out.

Virgo, the Virgin, ruled by Mercury: Manly Hall

Virgo, the Virgin, bring us the gift of service.  But service is a mystery.  Too often when we try to help, we cause harm.

To serve, according to Manly Hall, is to bring forth something into life.  To make ready the way.  To create the conditions so that life can flourish.

This kind of service requires wisdom.  What must we do in order to do good?


Sunday, February 10, 2013

Leo, the Lion, ruled by the Sun: Manly Hall

Leo, the Lion, ruled by the Sun is the next sign of the zodiac and contains the next gift bestowed upon man to learn to use and to overcome on his soul's journey.

This is the story of Hercules and Samson, for the Sun is the symbol of energy and man must learn to use energy without pressure, without pride, without force.  In the mythology, the lion must be slayed without a weapon; the hero must use his bare hands.  And he does this by breaking the lion's jaw.

In one representation, a Virgin binds the jaw with her handkerchief, telling us that power must be bound to consciousness.  That gentleness can hold the power of the lion in check.

Energy is a wonderful thing, and the more energy we have the more responsibility we have to use it wisely.  For energy is like gunpowder, it can be used to good or for ill.  On our journey through life, the soul that learns this lesson learns that nothing that is good can ever be attained by force.

Saturday, February 9, 2013

The Sign of Cancer, the Crab, Ruled by the Moon: Manly Hall

The next astrological sign that Manly Hall discusses is the sign of Cancer, the Crab, ruled by the Moon.

The gift bestowed by the Moon is mood, moods which, if we are not careful, can make us the servant of the tides.  The Moon which is both light and dark, shows us the strange inconstancy in ourselves.

We are sometimes 'yes,' and sometimes 'no,' so that if we allow our moods to control us, we move on surfaces of things we cannot control.

We must learn to rise above the passing pressures of our moods which weaken us.  This strange cycle of ebbing and flowing, of coming and going, of hopes and fears we cannot understand.

We must bring out own nature into line and do no thing too much or too little.  For the pressure of moods can make us think the end justifies the means.  This pressure can turn our idealism into vanity, our dedication into fanaticism.  Then the Madness of the Moon is upon us.

Friday, February 8, 2013

Gemini, the Twins: Manly Hall

With Gemini, the Twins, the gift that is bestowed upon us is psychic polarity.  Nothing is ever all one thing or all another ever again, and this gift of polarity brings thoughtfulness.

And thoughtfulness brings caution.  According to Manly Hall:  "The more stupid people are, the more certain they are.  And the more thoughtful they are, the more uncertain they are."

So, as with all gifts, this one is a mixed blessing.  We must learn to be thoughtful without losing our direction.  We must learn to be skillful, but not lose purpose.

The principle of duality, brings division, and division always bring loss and disillusionment.  Division intensifies, brings prejudice, and never lets anything die.  Long after the argument is lost, we may still be going over the facts in our heads.

"That which the gods would destroy, they must first divide."

Therefore, the lesson of the gift of Gemini is never to forget that all things are one.  We must learn to acknowledge the unity in all things, even though we can see the opposites.

Thursday, February 7, 2013

Taurus, the Sign of the Bull: Manly Hall

Taurus, the sign of the bull is the second sign in the zodiac and bestows the second gift upon a human soul entering a body.

The gift that the bull bestows is steadfastness, an indominatable decision of purpose.
Too often, however, steadfastness deteriorates into stubbornness, arrogance.  "Everybody knows he's right and everything goes wrong."

And so we sit smugly entrenched behind our own beliefs and defenses for self-protection.

In order to make use of this gift of steadfastness, in order to be serenely purposeful, we must constantly analyze our motives to ensure that we are not being held by some falst attitude.

We must learn to be true to ourselves without being untrue to others.  The myth of the minataur solving the muystery of the labyrinth is our guide and will keep us loyal to the truth and not just to our own opinions and prejudices.Taurus, the sign of the bull is the second sign in the zodiac and bestows the second gift upon a human soul entering a body.

(NOTE:  I have not used quotation marks extensively in this series because I took the information from an audio tape.  Nevertheless, the words are all Manly Hall's.  I have merely added the sticky words to hold the ideas together.)

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Astro-Theology Series (Manly Hall Lectures)

This is going to be a series of posts using the Manly Hall lectures on Astro-Theology in which he traces the soul's journey through the astrological signs.

In the introduction to this lecture, Hall says that before the soul enters into a body, each of the signs of the zodiac or each of the archetypes, bestows upon the soul a gift.  The purpose of life is to learn to use all these gifts, but not to overuse them, so that when it is time for the soul to return to its source, each gift can be returned to the cosmos because it has been integrated into that soul.

Aries, being the first sign of the zodiac, ushers in spring with the vernal equinox.  The gift that the ram bestows is courage without combativeness, strength without ambition.  Greatness, yet humility.

Man must learn to achieve without destroying.

Monday, February 4, 2013

Layers of Beingness or Playing Dress-up

I read the other day, somewhere, that playing dress-up begins at age five and never really ends.

And I was reminded of Lane's tea party last winter for the two little French girls, aged about 5 and 8 (I think).  I provided the hats and furs and jewels.  Lane provided the tea and cookies.

There were also three college girls, Lane, one of her friends, and me, besides the little girls.

Of course, we all had our cell phones with cameras, but these days you can't publish pictures of other people's children, so I made this little drawing which, for me, so represents, playing dress-up.

Then, my mind jumps to the Monday Night Girls' Group and our website, Layers of Beingness, which we created to keep up with each other as the school year ended and everybody scattered to their various grown-up jobs.

We never did anything with "Layers of Beingness," which as you might imagine was my title, but I find that I am forever playing with that idea in my head.

Even the watercolors included in the Manly hall information are bits and pieces of me, and they all evolved from that little 5-year-old girl inside my head who so enjoys playing dress-up.

Saturday, February 2, 2013

Patience, Concentration, Self-Control, etc.: Manly Hall

More from the Manly Hall lectures:

"The patient person is free from the need to force things."

"Growth of the person comes when the false motions are relaxed."

"Only when false motion is stilled can the true motion be perceived within by the person himself."

"Concentration is the individual attempting to coordinate his own resources."

"Our garments or robes symbolically are not only our energy fields, they are also our intellectual and emotional bodies, our energies, thoughts, feelings, hopes, fears."

"Our temperament robes our inner life."

"By concentration, we are not merely exercising our will, we are gradually imposing principle over our personal conduct.  We are no longer the slaves of our appetites."

"The body is the servant of concentration.  When the body rules us, the lowest part of ourselves is in control."

"The victory is not in the thing we concentrate on but in the ability to control our own mind."

"Concentration aimed at some material end has no value."

"Nature uses punishment only for those who obstinately refuse to see."

"Our aim is to come to the point where, when we say to the mind, 'Think,' it will think.  And when we say to the mind, 'Rest,' it will rest."

"The puspose of concentration is to get hold of the reins of our own faculties."

"The moment the individual attempts to control himself in any way, he either itches or hurts somewhere."

"With the mind so completely out of control, how can we expect our lives to be in any better condition."

"Without self-conrol, we can never be secure in anything."

"You have to be very wise before you always want to do what is right."