If yesterday was about appreciating the natural world and what we already have to make our garden grow, Mary, then today is about casting our gaze outward with some longing for that which we might desire from what society has on offer. A Young Couple Window-Shopping is the Sabian Symbol for 12° Taurus, which, in a twelve-fold sequence, would be lorded over by the sign of Virgo. This makes immediate sense to me: The Virgo, who is apparently not gluten-free, holds a sheaf of seeded grain which she is about to consume, and the natural intelligence of her body will separate wheat from chaff, nutrient from detritus. If we read the sheaf as a phallic symbol, this might be an image of would-be gestation not digestion, but, still, the natural intelligence of the human body will take its course. Either way, the Virgin considers what she takes in and its effects on her. Today’s oracle reads similarly, the couple is considering what’s on offer in store windows in anticipation of consuming the bounty society, not nature, has on offer.
When it comes to natural appetites in the form of hunger or some surging in our loins, it needn’t involve our mind, though it should in light of making the right choices in what to eat or who to pork. When it comes to societal stores of bounty, we must employ our mind and ego more actively. Discernment isn’t just a filter, it is the means by which we digest our experience and decide what is need and what is want. We should give ourselves the requisite props for operating in society. If you’re a musician, you should shop for the right instrument; if you’re a high-powered sales executive, you need to look your best and possess some efficient gadgetry. Materials can take the form of needs if they are in service to true self-expression and efficacy. Virgo is the sign of service and of work. And you better work and serve your own realness. Discernment however is more difficult to employ on the societal level as, unless you’re given to gluttony or excessive lust, our natural appetites have inherent shut-off valves. But how do we know when enough is enough when we enter the man-made agora, the market place, and how do we know what is too little. Perhaps the couple is window shopping because they cannot afford to buy anything. Surely, this image carries the connotation of feeling cut off from the bounties civilization might provide, feeling like one with his or her nose pressed up against the window, with no easy access or entreé.
Personally I don’t like how I feel when I over consume on goods. I can get as nauseous buying things I don’t need as I do overeating or indulging in sweets. But it can be a good barometer. It might see me embrace a more ascetic lifestyle for quite awhile; just as it inspires me to take stock of what I do have and to appreciate what that is all the more. With our clients we work very mindfully on the power of appreciation and foster a sort of alchemy that can positively take hold when they embody that power in their own lives. Also, think of that Beltane image of yesterday—A Woman Watering Flowers in Her Garden—and its interpretation as Mother Earth, the natural intelligence of the world, taking care of all life, her own vast organism, of which we are just a part; now think of the couple, man and woman, polarities pointing to the proliferation of life, on a stroll out window shopping: They are in a position of power to purchase that which might work or not with Mother Nature in her design. Adam and Eve have been set loose from her Garden and their actions might further alienate them from it or they might contribute to their getting back to it. In our society it’s all to easily to foster this separation between nature and the human self; though we can always stop, that window symbolizing both a momentary pause and perhaps some self-reflection on that score. The virgin of Virgo bids us consider what consumption or consumerism will do to our individual organism and the larger one of our world, as they are one and the same.
I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: The notion of we humans being organs of consciousness via which the world, or indeed the universe, might perceive itself is not only an intriguing one, but it’s somehow reassuring in its sense of connectedness and literal responsibility. Virgo rules digestion. And I think we can trust our guts to know whether our consumerist actions will entail the making of too large a footprint. We are window shopping, just looking. Our eyes are the first line of defense against glut or waste. Let us try imagining our gaze is not just our own. Let us be the eyes of the world.
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