Mists of Avalon
Do you remember, as kids, making houses out of cards? It was fun to see how elaborate a structure you could build before the whole deck crumbled in on itself. It took a steady hand and some nifty tricks to construct a four-story house of cards.
For a minute or two, I want to bring your attention to a few other things as well. For example, consider a cardboard box. Surely many of you have moved once or twice. If you have, you’ve put together your box, taped it up, and loaded it with your belongings. And you likely stacked them up maybe higher than the top of your head. And some of you have certainly gone a bit too far to find the stack eventually buckle and topple.
We all know from that childhood story about three little pigs that the more rigid a structure is, the better it withstands outside forces. It was only the third pig’s brick house that survived the wolf’s mighty breath.
Instead of a modern brick house like you might see in Brooklyn, I want you to consider Machu Picchu, Peru. Why? Because in Machu Picchu, they didn’t use mortar. The stones were simply stacked with such perfection that they have stood for eons. In a way, Machu Picchu is the ultimate house of cards!
So one of our pigs lives in a house of cards, the other in a cardboard box, and the third in an Inca house built of stone. I am going to call these pigs: Gemini, Libra, and Aquarius.
I bet you didn’t see that coming! Quite a stretch from the three little pigs to the air signs of the Zodiac!
Today, we are five days from the end of Mercury Retrograde in Scorpio. We are also only two days past the solar eclipse, which occurred in the very same sign. And, on top of all of that, only four short days ago the ruler of Scorpio was part of an exact T-Square with Uranus (the ruler of Aquarius) and the moon (in Libra at the time).
In the past month or so, I have mentioned how eclipses help reveal more light by dragging us through darkness. And I have mentioned that the purpose of Mercury pulling us back over a trodden path is to better prepare us for new roads ahead. And, we have been told again and again that Pluto (and Scorpio) is about death and rebirth.
So what does all of this Astrology have to do with three little pigs and their respective houses? Allow me to give just a little more background and then I’ll bring it all together.
In the Tarot, we have a card called The Moon. If this card were to be associated with Astrology, I could link it to the moon (in general), but I could also link it to a total solar eclipse (specifically). That is because The Moon in the Tarot is about a lack (or deficiency) of light. It is when we cannot see as clearly as we would like.
In my Natal chart, I have Mercury in Gemini, but I also have Mercury in the 11th house, which gives it an Aquarian slant. [It might surprise you to know that I never thought about that before now.] Above, I associated the house of cards with Gemini because Gemini is mutable air. It is the most flexible, changeable, and adaptable. With cards, we can build and rebuild at whim.
We’ve all seen Geminis flit from one subject to the next with nary a breath or conjunction in between (kind of like this post). The gift of Gemini is thinking on one’s feet, but the challenge is focus and longevity. Mercury goes back and forth quickly, rather than taking the slow and steady track.
Aquarius is fixed air, the other extreme. It is also also associated with ideals. Ideals are mental constructs that are held firm. They are not passing whims. Some people spend an entire life attempting to build (or reach) the physical version of their personal ideal, be it a career, a relationship, a book, or a piece of art. Ideal, by definition, is the pinnacle. It is perceived perfection. It is a Machu Picchu. If it is realized (created or manifested into physical form), it can last a very, very long time.
For the record, the reason I think of Libra as the cardboard box is the flexibility that it contains. A cardboard box has much more stability than a house of cards, but is much more flexible than a brick house. It can hold things well, but always has a little play to it. If you stack boxes carefully, they can wobble, but remain standing.
Architects have learned that to build skyscrapers to withstand earthquakes, they must have flexibility. It is in this case where a rigid structure is not best. You will notice, if you visit San Francisco, for example, that you do not find many brick houses there. You’ll find some with brick façades, but not true houses of brick and mortar.
Relationships, like cardboard boxes, will last longer if they are flexible and have healthy boundaries.
As a man with Mercury in the 11th house, I am realizing that my mind is more rigid than I initially thought. Some beliefs I hold so firmly, they are hard to shift. They don’t even jiggle…until the earthquake comes.
Lets consider what happens when we plant an oak tree inside each of our pig houses. The house of cards wouldn’t impede growth even for a minute. And the cardboard box would easily shred once the trunk outgrew it. However the tree would probably grow around the stone walls in Peru. Given enough time, it might nudge it slightly, but I doubt it would knock it over.
The point is: the more rigid a structure, the harder it is knock it over. It takes quite a bit of TNT to demolish a concrete building. Buildings are not much different than ideas. In fact, all buildings start as ideas and only become buildings once the plans are implemented (manifested). And religions, governments, corporations, and mores are no different. They are systems and structures built from ideas—albeit lots and lots of ideas melded together. When they are stable, they last a long time, but when they are super rigid, they fall pretty hard when they are outgrown.
Astrologically speaking, we just went through a profound and painful death. Even though I saw it coming, I didn’t know how much it would hurt.
For some of us, this has been quite personal and quite painful. The ideas and constructs we’ve held the firmest, which are being blasted now, are the ones that hurt the most as they crumble.
I have called this post Mists of Avalon because I (and perhaps some of you) are in the midst of the mists. Some of our old (outmoded) beliefs have died or are very, very sick. They are not working any longer. And because we can’t see the island of Avalon just yet, we are afraid. The Mists don’t just hide what’s in front of us; they hide what’s behind us too. In other words, we can’t get back to where we were either. As much as we may want to go back, it’s simply not an option, or at least not a viable one. Maybe what we had is no longer available. Maybe we’ve changed too much.
The Moon in the Tarot is the Mists of Avalon. It is that time when we can’t see beyond the bow of our boat. Sometimes, we can’t even tell we are moving.
Death/Rebirth is not evolution. It is not incremental. It is hard, fast, and a one-way door. Yes, we can prolong the dying. We can stretch out the decay. We can hold on to the bitter end. But when death comes, it is instantaneous.
The death of beliefs happens pretty quickly too. It may take a bit of time to realize that a belief has died, but that’s something different. And until we can build or find new beliefs, we are stuck in the fog.
The mists are challenging. They are scary. It is easy to think we’ll never see the light of day again. And we know that if and when we do find the shore, we can’t be sure what that land will be like.
However, at the same time, the mists are protective and nurturing…if we let them be. Avalon is such a departure from the mainland. It is a vastly different reality. It is, in part, the manifestation of our dreams, at least as much as we will allow. It is not exactly easy to find or get to. In a sense, we have to die and then cross over to get there.
Unlike the little pigs, my house was made of stone, but painted with all sorts of pretty cards. It looks like a house of cards, but isn’t as easy to change as I thought. The cards were easily shifted and redesigned, and hid the stone underneath.
This season of Scorpio caught me off guard. It ate away the foundation of the stones while leaving the cards in place. But then a passing storm blew it all down. I’m in the midst of the mists, and I can’t tell how far the shore is. I can’t even be sure I’m moving or in which direction if I am.
If you’re in the mists too and feeling lost and alone, here’s a shout out to you. Can you hear me?
This journey just might be a mass migration and not a solitary pilgrimage. If you are one that gets to Avalon first, be sure to shine your light to help the rest of us out…