I believe the most important single thing, beyond discipline and creativity, is daring to dare.
As our spirits still rattle from the closing of the Full Moon/Lunar eclipse in the wee hours of Sunday (Eastern time), we remain immersed in a time of existential questions and concerns. What has changed? What can we salvage? What has gone forever? Into this chaotic crossroads steps our good friend The Fool.
Sometimes disliked by those who revere analytical logic and the feeling of being in control, The Fool is a card of joy, risk-taking, and spontaneity.
In the Waite-Smith deck, he sports a jaunty red feather. His arms are spread wide, his heart is unshielded. With his hand in the position of the Gyan Mudra, he holds a white rose – symbol of both passion and purity. Poised on the precipice, he is accompanied by his companion dog who is either warning or dancing with him (or a bit of both).
His tunic is covered in circles divided into eighths – referencing the eight quarters and cross-quarter holidays of the Wheel of the Year. How fitting that we in the Northern Hemisphere are in the midst of High Summer, halfway between Solstice and First Harvest.
As he stands on the edge of a stride into the unknown, he carries a small satchel on a stick. He travels with only the essentials, eschewing all that is weighty or complicated.
However, look closely and you will see that the stick upon which his bag is attached is a magic wand. Is he aware of its power?
The Fool is the Zero in the Tarot – the beginning and end of the Major Arcana journey, but not a part of the story itself.
And rather than the Minors’ focus on, say, matters of the mind in the Swords, or security and resources in the Pentacles, remember that the Tarot Triumphs offer us powerful life lessons that affect all aspects of our lives.
If you’ve been visiting with me for a while, or if you follow any of the many brilliant tropical astrologers that I love to quote (looking at you, Elisabeth and Lorna!), you know how the Pluto in Capricorn powerhouse (November 26, 2008 until January 20, 2024) has been crumbling the institutional foundations of our civilization, many of which we may have imagined were impervious to change.
Back at the beginning, in 2008, legendary astrologer Ralfee Finn explained that this is —
… where structures of every denomination — personal and collective as well as physical and psychic — are unmasked to reveal the bare bones of what lies behind or beneath; where wrathful deities, dressed in primary colors, challenge corruption as they simultaneously encourage authenticity; where government officials, financial institutions, and just about every other prototype of authority seem to crumble from the weight of meaningless modus operandi…
And since 2008, that’s pretty much what has happened.
In a giant pile-on to this massive disruption, disciplinarian and lord of karma Saturn retrograded back into Capricorn last week, and expansive Jupiter is also conjunct Pluto in Capricorn, exact this past April, a week ago on June 30, and once more, coming up Nov. 12.
Just for some perspective, the last time Pluto transited Capricorn was 1762-1777, the time of the American Revolution and the onset of the industrial revolution – pivotal historic events that seem to be coming back for a soul-searching review now.
My friend and (alas!) semi-retired astrologer Judy Joyce explains:
This energy brings an overwhelming focus on power and control – as in who has it and who doesn’t. During this period there will be re-organization of power in the world. The energies of this conjunction began to be felt in January 2018 and we have already seen it reflected in the world. It [grew] much stronger in 2019 and will be very strong in 2020 and 2021.
We can observe its effects so far, but at this point, it is impossible to know how it all turns out in the end. It will be many years before we can really grasp the significance of this time in history…
… There’s no denying we are in a time of great challenge, great change and great stress. Things are not the way they used to be. We may have thought at first that everything would return to some kind of “normalcy,” but that is not the case. The whole world seems askew. What we thought we could rely on has gone missing. The traditional structures that gave us a feeling of permanence and safety seem to be slipping away.
What we may not recognize is that this is also a period of great potential. We are entering a time of a major evolution in human consciousness. We needed this big shock to wake us up and get us ready to play our part in the years ahead. We are at the end an era. The old energies are losing strength.
A new era is coming in the 2020’s. This will be a huge transformation that is too vast for us to grasp while we are in the middle of it. We will see some glimmers of what is to come, but we must be patient and let the cycle run its course.
In other words, ready or not, with the extra muscle of heavyweights Jupiter and Saturn, the status quo is dissolving before our eyes, and “normal” is not coming back. The multiverse is pushing hard for us to evolve.
Enter, The Fool
In their brilliant master work, The Birth Cards (an essential course for every earnest Tarot explorer), Ruth Ann and Wald Amberstone note of the The Fool:
The Fool is your beginning — the mystery and delight of your first steps, the moment when everything is new and sparkling for you. You have no past, no future, not even a present — only pure possibility, as yet unrealized…
The Fool creates the world with his steps — the ground rises to meet his feet. There is no ground until he steps.
You create your own world with your steps. Whatever decision you take, even if it is to do nothing, creates your experience moment by moment.
You can consciously choose to put your foot where you will, although you can’t predict the outcome just by where you step.
You can do this unconsciously as well. But nothing happens without a step…Your choice in any moment is to know that you are The Fool or to be unaware of it.
It is clear that there will be more drama, more shocking surprises, and our personal and group stories will play out in strange plot twists completely unforeseen just a few months ago.
But this week, now, we are given our “Get Out of Jail Free” card.
Blessed by the REtrogrades now underway, we can REview, REflect, and REboot, knowing that we are now in totally uncharted territory.
Wave after wave of change is crashing upon our heads. Paralysis is not an option, and there is no “there” to go back to. The “good old days” really weren’t so good for everyone. And in any case, they now are very much history.
Thus The Fool shows us how to keep moving, stepping beyond our doubt and second-guessing.
Never mind the many unknowns; vast Mystery was really there before us all along. It’s just that the illusion of stability and control have been irrevocably unmasked.
There are infinite “Yeah, but’s” that we could come up with. It would be completely understandable. It’s been a very hard year, and no letup in sight.
But The Fool is our great, overarching grace, urging us to keep looking up. Trust the ground that will meet us as long as we step forward.
The Fool calls to our creativity, innocence, and joy. He is our ideal playmate for Summer’s days, reminding us that as alien and complicated as life has become, play is still necessary; perhaps more than ever.
His designation of the Zero is an invitation to step outside of the grind. Zero is a time out of time. What would life look like for you, if you were given a fresh, clean slate?
In fact, it turns out we all have been.
I will conclude with the prescient, hope-filled words of Judy, written many months before the pandemic, the current exorcisms of systemic racism and hate, and the accelerating detonations of treasonous bombshells coming from our nation’s capital.
Her message is perfectly attuned to The Fool this week.
You are being given an opportunity to take ownership and responsibility as you transform and RESET your life by using these Capricorn energies.
This RESET will involve getting out of your comfort zone and releasing lifelong habits, attitudes, beliefs and behaviors that are holding you back from being fully in charge of your life. You may have been thinking about making some changes or starting something new for at least the last year.
The cosmic energies [were] stirring things up and getting things started for you in 2019. The energies will be at their strongest in 2020.
You will need to be realistic and honest in order to do this. No rose colored glasses allowed. You can make the most of this opportunity by accepting responsibility and knowing you are in charge of your life. You can do this with faith and a positive outlook for the future.
You can do this by having the courage to let go of that which is no longer helpful in your life.
You can do this by facing your fears and seeing them for what they are—most likely lifelong (possibly past life) attitudes and behaviors that have been holding you back from expressing your true potential.
The only way to move forward is to let go, embrace and honor your own power and abilities.
And hit that Reset Button.
Released from the hypnosis of what we thought the world was, let us then, you and I together, dare to dance with free hearts into what is yet to be.