April, 2012

 Mythic Prelude:


Hail, and welcome to the Universal Festival Calendar for April, 2012. It comes out almost two weeks early this month because it is so important now in early 2012 to shift our emphasis off the arbitrary timing of the calendar months, and onto the dynamics of what is happening on Earth and Sky at what is the Spring Equinox in the northern hemisphere, the Autumn Equinox in the South.
Since very ancient times, in cultures throughout the northern hemisphere, the days after March 20 have been held sacred. They mark the conception of the Sun Child who will be born nine months later in the days following the Winter Solstice. Just as countless Eurasian deities, saviors and solar heroes were all born on Dec. 25 -- that is, the day when the "Sun stick" at the Winter Solstice had occurred, and the Sun was observed to have reversed course -- these worthy beings were all seeded into the womb of Mother Earth on March 25. Millennia before this day became inevitable as the Christian feast of the Annunciation, it had been observed as the moment when Baal and Osiris, Horus and Apollo, Dionysos and Mithras and a myriad others had all begun the journey toward their birth in the season that is called Yule because it yokes the old year with the new, and celebrates the rebirth of the soul for each, and the Sun for all.
This is all more urgent and thrilling in 2012, as you well know. It has never happened before in the history of our planet and our people that so many of us will meet in so many places to celebrate in so many ways the conception of a new humanity to be born months from now on a New Earth. We'll look at only two events here. The closest to my heart for a decade now is Circle of Sound, whose thousands of players, in over 30 countries, all meet to play their quartz crystal singing bowls and other instruments, and thereby aim to attune the resonant field of Earth to the frequencies of Acceptance, Peace, Compassion, Unity and Joy. This "Global Harmonization" is a synchronized event, in which all groups will align with 5:00pm GMT on Tuesday, March 20.
The main event of the month, where such ceremonies go, will come two days later on Thursday, March 22. It is called Conception Day 2012, and has been called by Barbara Marx Hubbard, Lynne McTaggart, Ervin Laszlo and other luminaries who have invited "all visionaries, healers, change agents, artists, pioneers and lovers of humanity to join us for this free global gathering that links the hearts and minds of people from around the world. . . . to cocreate a world that is healthy, sustainable, peaceful and prosperous for all." Central to all the activities will be a live webcast at which the Welcoming Committee aspires to gather 100 million people in "a shared commitment to birth a beautiful new world with global celebrations, broadcasts and synchronized events" at hundreds of locations throughout the world. Though other global meditations and ceremonies have aligned millions of people in simultaneous mantras and other global events, nothing on a scale this ambitious has ever been attempted before. The aim of the Conception Day events is to launch us toward a moment of planetary birth on Dec. 22.
It's tempting to wonder if the organizers of Conception Day 2012 chose March 22, rather than March 21 -- nine months before Dec. 21, the "mainstream Mayan calendar date" -- in order to cast their joint intentions within hours of the Aries Dark Moon. It may help to clarify this term. A New Moon means that the Moon, having been invisible for two days at the end of one cycle and the start of the next, reappears as a thin cup-like crescent whose sighting signals the start of a new month in the Buddhist, Muslim, Hindu, Jewish and other lunisolar calendars. The New Moon is the time to launch new efforts.
The Dark or Black Moon is the center of the Moon's period of invisibility, at the moment when the Moon aligns exactly with the Sun. This is the time when our psychic receptivity, and our ability to drive our intentions with powerful emotions, are at their peak, so that this time is ideal for forming clear and positive intentions for our personal and collective goals. So auspicious is the Dark Moon of March 22 that it is worth a brief look here, in a chart cast for 3:38pm in Venice, Italy.
The Black Moon of March 22, 2012:
March 22, 2012, 3:38 pm, Venice, Italy (45N27, 12E21)
Why Venice, Italy? Because that's where I'll be on the afternoon of March 22, but mainly because a chart cast for this location places the auspicious and powerful conjunction of Moon, Sun, Mercury and Uranus in Aries in the 8th house, which pertains to all matters of sweeping, transformative change, all transitions in which things that are due to fade pass away, and are replaced by the new forces that will now arrive.
The chart has other notable features too. In the 7th house is our old friend the Chiron-Neptune conjunction, now finally fading after three years, as faster-orbiting Chiron finally moves on toward the middle degrees of Pisces, so that the mysterious sense of random, unidentifiable woundedness that so many have felt since 2009 finally begins to clarify and lift. Mars (at 6° Virgo 56 in the first house) forms a grand trine in Earth along with Jupiter (11° Taurus 17) and Pluto (9° Capricorn 28) -- thus practical intentions, well anchored in the solid realm of effective action, can drive courageously toward their goals. At the top center of the chart, Venus is on the "midpoint" between Jupiter and the Midheaven (at 24° Taurus 42), so that celebrations aimed at the highest and best of spiritual goals could not be better timed.
Yet the irresistible engine of the chart is that four-planet conjunction. It adds to the igniting force of a Dark Moon in Aries the mental quickness and inventiveness of Mercury, and the volatility of Uranus, the bringer of change, who forms a 120° trine to the Moon's North Node (at 7° Sagittarius 12). We can see the implications of this in the true significance of the Death card from the Tarot, one of the essential mythic symbols of this moment in our history, when shocking, violent "news" events and fear-driven propaganda create such paranoia and desperation that crucially important clues are missed. In the background behind Death on his pale horse, a healthy wind blows a ship upstream, and the Sun rises at dawn with the promise of new life. While ancient astrologers called the 8th house the house of death, we see it now as the house of death and regeneration, of what must come anew.
Matters of mortality and renewal, of departure and return, have been much on my mind since my Living Aquarian tour ended on March 11, and I've been on retreat in Italy with a beloved friend who prefers for now to be called only Magdalen. We have a ceremony to perform in Rome at the end of our journey together. It has been in the works for seven years, and has gained momentum in recent months, as I've done a series of rituals with my family to bless and release the ashes of our parents in the places they loved. In December, we placed some of the ashes at their favorite park in Shawnee Mission, Kansas. A week ago I left some in the garden of my father's favorite church, St. John the Divine in New York. Three weeks from now, I'll release the rest in the place my mother always longed to visit, but never saw.
Meeting at St. Peter's
One of the bizarre, still haunting spiritual experiences that came during my Cairo years was my first session with the British spirit medium Jennifer Mansour. I went to see her mainly because she was so highly recommended by friends, though not because I wanted to make contact with a departed one. My father, then 86, was in the last year of his life. My mother had passed over four years before, just before she would have turned 81. If Jennifer had asked me if there was a departed soul whom I wanted to address, my mother would not have been my first choice. She was, naturally, the one who came through.
"Have you ever been to Rome?" Jennifer asked.
"Yes," I said. "I was there for a few days on my way to Cairo last year."
"Did you go to pray in St. Peter's Square?"

"I went there to see it, and the Vatican Museums. I stood in the Square for a while to look at the place."

"Did you realize that when you were in the Square, your mother was kneeling next to you, praying?"
"Ahhhh . . . no. I did not realize that."
I didn't ask any of the questions that were starting to tumble out, not wanting to break Jennifer's flow and move her from medium mind to analytical mind. The questions came when she was done.

"I thought," I said, "the whole point of going to the Other Side was to lift the veils of Earth and the body, and see through illusions of separation like the Catholic religion, or any religion, so we see the truth of our unity with God. No longer 'through a glass darkly.' Isn't that what St. Paul meant too?"

"In his way," Jennifer replied. "The truth each one aims to see is a refinement of their beliefs on Earth. If they were Catholic, they see past the imperfections and the dogmas, and see the pure essence of their faith."
"So whatever beliefs we have when we die are the ones we keep?"
Imagine that, as Kurt Vonnegut used to say. If we stay in the same religious track or channel when we die, then re-enter it when we come into birth the next time, and we don't gain any extraordinary new insight into the truth of things when we're on the Other Side, then a human life on Earth must be an even more precious opportunity than the Tibetan Buddhists say it is, because we can't evolve spiritually between our human lifetimes, in the Bardo or the afterworld or whatever other passage we go through. If Jennifer's premise is correct, then we can only awaken and evolve during our human lives on Earth. Only here can we can evolve from limiting beliefs in theistic religions to liberating realizations of spiritual truth.
I will pray for such insight, for myself and all beings, when I take my mother Mary Ann to her spiritual home on April 9, and scatter her ashes in St. Peter's Square. Magdalen and I will pray for conception in both senses of the word -- as the seeding of a new being to be brought to birth in the fullness of the year, and as the jointly-held concept of a new humanity and Earth in which all conscious beings may awaken to the highest possibilities of their freedom. While many have dreamed of this for thousands of years, it has not happened until now, in the year 2012, that many millions of us can conceive this goal together and make a conscious, determined effort to achieve it together.

We will sing it in the illahis and other chants we love, in music that affirms we are not only headed toward the One. We already are the One, each of us and all of us, if we will only see that, and hear it. It is enough to sound it in voices that are soft, and clear. Keep Holding That Frequency.

Please help support the Universal Festival Calendar and Hermes 3. If this site has value for you, you can make a donation, or order a subscription to the UFC for $25 a year, $50 for three years, $100 lifetime (my lifetime, that is!). Just click here.