Behind the Veil

Originally posted on July 20, 2016 at http://www.planetwaves.net

 

Well, my dears, the surreality continues. Sometimes I wonder if there actually is a man sitting behind a curtain somewhere, perhaps named Oz, who is orchestrating this whole show — and that I have a chance to interview him some day to find out what the hell he’s been thinking during this massive puppet play.

Speaking of curtains…a wise woman recently wondered aloud to me if perhaps what we’re experiencing now is the lifting of ‘the veil.’ She mentioned the thought to me in direct to response to either the Pulse Nightclub shootings or one that happened shortly after.

I was kind of shocked at the thought at first. I’ve always kind of thought of ‘what’s behind the veil’ as a mystical-romantic concept or otherworldly reality. Home of intuition and goddess — the High Priestess’s realm.

I like it when someone says something that sparks an insight that makes me cringe or otherwise question my assumptions. Her remark made me realize: we really don’t know what’s behind ‘the veil.’ That’s the whole point, really, whether it’s referred to as the process of transitioning into death or the division between this world and the other, or whatever. Furthermore, it is perhaps technological advances that will illuminate the other side of the veil far faster than, say, an initiatory, esoteric or magical system, prayer, religious lineage, ecstatic dance work or any of the other systems that have been passed down through the ages.

All at once, events hit closer to home for each of us; partially because they’re happening in seemingly more rapid succession, but mostly because they are broadcast instantly, permeating our consciousness all the time through television and internet, and with even more impact through social media. Our faces are constantly being smashed up against a ‘reality’ that is at times shocking and maddening in its inhumanity, and at other times punctuated by flat-out ridiculousness; it’s bringing a constant state of incredulity to consciousness for many.

As our faces get smashed time and again, our defenses are being stripped away by rapid-fire social media inundation. Are our filters strengthening or disappearing? Is our discernment increasing or being dulled?

In the face of everything it seems like people are fumbling, stumbling and reaching for meaning — perhaps to mediate such rapidly increasing consciousness and awareness — in increasing amounts, at the same time as rampant, violent racism, sexism and hate are exploding into view all around us. Has the increase in both facets just always been there and is now projected more? Or are they increasing?

I think about the world immediately surrounding me. I’ve been teaching “AstroCircle” workshops once a month for about two years now. I recognize the increasing enthusiasm and wonder of the participants as we sometimes sit around a built, three-dimensional zodiac wheel with images and symbols laid out so that people can, for example, ‘sit where there Mars is’ and see the full wheel and corresponding images laid out in front of them. I recognize that I taught an intro to Shamanic journeying workshop recently that brought in a host of new (to me) participants who were buzzing about what they learned after the class ended, sharing phone numbers with each other. Reportedly they were heard around the neighborhood the next morning talking about how excited they were to learn such a thing.

I posted something on Facebook yesterday, acknowledging the emotional intensity of the current Moon cycle, with the reminder that it is in fact a cycle, and drawing people’s attention to that. So many people ‘liked’ it and thanked me for the reminder or validation that I had to double check and confirm — it wasn’t just the usual fans of astrology acknowledging the simple statement, it was people who I often think of as total science/atheistic types.

I’m always careful not to put too much emphasis on ‘blaming’ the Sun and the Moon for reactions and events. There’s plenty going on in the world other than an intense Moon cycle that might cause an emotional reaction or twelve. But seeing life in terms of interlocking and interconnected cycles has always been helpful for me, and sharing that with others seems appropriate.

What an incredible tool this astrology thing is for transitions and initiations — a construct and map that helps us navigate the revelation of what’s behind the veil. Because of that, I’m increasingly coming down more firmly in my belief that to be effective and relevant, astrology does indeed need to be rooted in a spiritual belief system of some sort.

It isn’t mundane. It is magical — and practical.

I’m really just pondering some things in free-flow form here. But if I bring it back to my wise friend’s comment, to the cringe-worthy notion that perhaps for some of us, exposure to things like racist homicide is akin to a lifting of the veil — of delusion and illusion perhaps — there is a shock element that compels me. It’s almost as if I’m grasping a new understanding of what it is to die ‘unconsciously’ — to be taken into some weird bardo, purgatory or nightmare state from which I have no idea how to escape and in which I have no idea how to navigate. Stunned into disbelief.

There’s an often-paraphrased notion that goes something like: when the darkness seems to be getting darker it’s only because the light is getting brighter. It’s been an intense few weeks. But I reflect on the seeming increase in people using tools like astrology to understand and orient, and I see some light.

I read Fe’s column this week, so beautifully and humbly real and yet optimistic, and I can’t help but re-state and reaffirm something she closed with: it’s time to throw ourselves into the magic that is our lives — our art, our music, our sex. Our self-awareness and growth. Question, express, dissect, live as honestly as we can as our filters change and our hearts get torn open time and time again. Dance through it, love through it, cry through it, tear down walls that need trampling and continue to question and revise.

Something huge is in fact being revealed, and I do believe our best course of action is to live from the heart and embody the passionate, compassionate qualities of our incredible human hearts — even when the process of opening them feels unbearably painful.

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