In the last throes of my thirty-day yoga challenge and I am somehow injured. My left hip is in agony and my entire left leg has been spasming for the last twelve hours not stop. Me no like feeling defeated or powerless or mortal for that matter. I was planning on working through it and just going and doing what I can but today’s symbol is giving me pause. Two Dignified Spinsters Sitting in Silence is the oracle of 17° Aries. Today seems to be about embracing a certain renunciation and not only accepting the things of life that passed us by, but somehow finding the meditative serenity in that. I think of the Miss Allens in A Room With A View—they were dignified but they surely weren’t silent. Still, there seems to be an elegance and yes a dignity that is reserved for the spinster, as if her station is by choice rather than chance.
The fate-goddess assignation to the term spinster is endemic, since, spinning wool was the only profession available to unmarried women of yore. And, like Jean Brodie and, to a certain degree, the character of Aunt Charlotte, also from A Room With a View (both portrayed by Maggie Smith), spinsterhood was often the result of having an over idealized view of love, or perhaps a very realistic one, knowing that the state of marriage would only disappoint, in the literal sense, of disempowering. In this way the spinsters can be read as co-conspirators of feminist freedom whose serenity stems from choosing their own life path and not being subject to the legal confines of contractual partnership. They are paired nonetheless and who knows what love affairs their memories provide.
Rudhyar points to this image having a narcissistic character. That may be true. But I interpret their silence as more than mere self-reflection; I get a sense of meditation or prayer. They figures are inwardly focused their energy isn’t vacant or dormant, it is centered and probably purposeful. I believe they are powered by their renunciation. Like saints or ascetics, they might be offering up usual worldly trappings in sacrifice and dedication to something larger. Nuns wear black because they are absorbing all the negativity of this world on behalf of us all—that’s the concept anyway—just as they or monks, whether Christian or Buddhist or what have you, pray for the salvation of all mankind or enlightenment of all sentient beings. They’ve not escaped life, they’re working. I feel that to be true with our spinsters. They have a plan and they’re hatching it. Like Obie Wan sacrificing his life to make the force more powerful, these ladies are affecting more positive change in their stillness and silence than they could have done in the typical dance and drama of life.
It’s Monday so this uncelebratory image is rather fitting for the day. I think the oracle cautions us against too much activity, especially that which we feel is expected of us. We can sacrifice some of the usual shenanigans and approach the day, more, as a silent meditation. Let’s not junk it up with overcommitment. We may demur, even, in a dignified manner. We can be self-possessed and not only live with our sadness or rejections, we can see them as choices; we are not victims of circumstance. We often tell our clients to repeat the phrase I Want What I Have (another Starsky + Cox mantra for you!) all different ways, emphasizing this word and than that. The Spinsters are saying something similar: I Don’t Want What I Don’t Have seems to be their message to us. And they are not alone. They mediation seems to be synchronized as to make it all the more resonant. We hear you sisters!
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