Red Arrow to the Galactic Center


The position of our Galactic Centre is at 27 degrees Sagittarius and so if we were to fire a red arrow (like a good Centaur) from the earth pointing at 27 degrees Sagittarius we would meet eventually the super massive black hole at the center of our Galaxy. In 2006-2007 Pluto transited this point, the author’s natal Ascendant is on this point and Mars is transiting this point as I write and post this in December 2010. The galactic center, as perceived from earth is in Sagittarius. What might this mean?

I have shown in my previous writing my enthusiasm for the Archetypal perspective – a view that I will endeavor to follow here. To begin with the archetype of Sagittarius, the Centaur, we find a creature part horse part man/archer in which the embodiment of the animal self and the human self (with its aspirational shot at the future) are combined. Here we find the correspondence to a state that Ken Wilber in his ongoing anatomy of consciousness aptly refers to as the ‘centauric stage’ in which the naïve persona has encountered shadow (that which it denies about itself) and in its initial dialogue with this shadow has begun to transcend initial limitations to forge a relative mind-body unity.

To further meditate on the Archer/Centaur we find that from the union of man with nature celebrated in the form of the horse (the untamed spirit and nature co-operating with man as helper) leads to the archer pointing his bow to the stars, a bow-bough to the lights above.

Here we see an allusion to natural laws that govern both animal and human life and also have a distantly perceived relevance in the events of the sky, the events of the solar system and galactic activity thus creating an interlocking of the micro and macrocosmic scales of life. In many so-called primitive cultures their own tribal and cultural life was based on their perceived relationship to the events of the sky, their own Cosmo-genesis (i.e. Mayan, Native American, Dogon and many more) in a sense embodying the different stages of life held in the cosmic Archer.

I draw from this an integrative view of all forms of life that we could name as having a basis within certain natural laws, a certain underlying structure of creation that may be intuited yet their investigation and explanation will take multiple and varied forms. It is my intuition that these natural laws include a moral element inherently, that life inherently has integrity. This stance may at times be beyond ‘good and evil’ in their simplistic duality and could itself be the subject of many and complex meditations however for brevity and clarity I offer the example that it appears to be a natural law since the evolution of the mammalian brain that mother’s protect and nurture their young, this appears in seemingly all forms of life since that point and is of course an inherent aspect of survival. However in more intelligent animal forms and human forms such survival instinct expands to include all sorts of more subtle expressions of what might at its clearest be called a genuine form of love. This is at best a moral minefield but I would assert the felt sense that most people of a sufficient integrity can feel when something is right or wrong, a natural moral sense, which a modality such a kinesiology taps into on an instinctual level.

From this point of view it is a natural law that man search for meaning (the Arrow sent skyward) in the Cosmos, it is a man-made law that says one book (Bible, Koran, and Principia Mathematica) is sole arbiter of truth. The contrast is critical between them.

The importance of man’s search for meaning can be found clearly in the work of Viktor Frankl. His moment of seeing clearly the basis of his attachment to meaning which came when a guard in the concentration camps found his thesis sewn into the inside of his jacket and destroyed it. For a while Frankl was inconsolable and his survival weighed in the balance. As he recovered he was able to clearly see that those around him would often give in and die when their sense of meaning was destroyed: we need to believe in something, we need hope.

With the Galactic Center in Sagittarius we are reminded on admittedly a very subtle or esoteric level that such a struggle for truth is central to the experience of mankind within the Cosmos. It is the vision of truth that we have that we will manifest the world we inhabit from. It is from our inner sense of meaning and purpose that we will create the world. In this sense I would suggest that mankind is far more powerful than as yet it has even begun to imagine. This power is not the deranged fantasies of those that are gunning for Apocalypse, far from it; this is the power of co-creating with life from a symbolic and psychic interplay with the other forces of creation. We can do this clearly only with regard to the extent that we have learned to stand in our integrity as a living part of this natural order. That this is complicated is alluded to in the first of Rilke’s sublime Duino Elegies:

For beauty is nothing
but the beginning of terror, which we still are just able to
and we are so awed because it serenely disdains
to annihilate us. Every angel is terrifying.
And so I hold myself back and swallow the call-note
of my dark sobbing. Ah, whom can we ever turn to
in our need? Not angels, not humans,
and already the knowing animals are aware
that we are not really at home in
our interpreted world.

The choice of symbolisms that we make comfortably or uncomfortably, in our “interpreted world” is part of how we will come to terms with it. Astrology operates on both microcosmic and macrocosmic levels. In meditating today on the nature of the Sagittarius archetype, and the nature of the distant Galactic center we enter a dialogue with the larger themes of existence. Surely part of the beauty of Astrology, that by its nature it leads us towards a direct dialogue with the heavens as to our place in the Cosmos. We will explore this through some of the critical stargazers in history in a following post for now though we can consider that when we take our place inside the Cosmos and the Earth, as neither decadent usurpers of nature nor simple peasants, when we realize that we are welcome here we create the possibility of the human and animal inside us living in harmony in the creation through alignment with the stars. This is the potential for unity through diversity.

In realizing that we create from our beliefs, and that are beliefs are based from a complex set of interactions of our thoughts, feelings and experiences we are really begin to say that everything we think and feel and do has an impact on this world. This is the ultimate insight of ecology. Every thought, feeling, dream, desire or action that you have ever had or will ever have has an impact in the multiple potentials of the way the world is. This is a realization that is somewhat shattering in its implications and yet contains multiple seeds of liberation. There is no-one else needed to begin to allow the impact of this liberation but yourself. Good luck.

Mark Jones

IMAGES: Dead Poet Borne by a Centaur by Gustave Moreau (1890), Plutó by Agostino Carracci (1592).