Solar Eclipse and the Grand Cross

by Guru Rattana, Ph.D. - Issue #1, 25th July 1999

The Solar Eclipse August 11, 1999 is one of two of the most powerful astrological configurations of this century.(1) In a solar eclipse, the Sun is obscured briefly by the Moon. Normal rational thought and actions give way to the non-rational, irrational, emotional, and imaginative. Because our responses at this level of consciousness are often uncontrolled and chaotic, this time is not one of business as usual and anything can happen and often does. Eclipses provide a boost in energy, expand consciousness and stimulate evolutionary change.

Eclipses are often felt months before the actual event and their effects last long afterwards. As you read this article, you may recognize how some of the phenomena of this eclipse are influencing your life already. The purpose of this article is to examine the nature of this event and its possible impacts in our personal and collective lives.

The Grand Cross

Four potent energies are lined up in a grand cross. So what is a grand cross and why is this so potent? A grand cross is formed when two things happen: (1) Two planets, or sun and moon, (in this case the sun and the moon together, with the moon eclipsing or covering the sun) are opposite each other in the sky. (2) A second set of planets (or sun and moon) are directly opposite each other, crossing the other set at a 90° angle. The result is that 4 planets are at 90° angles to each other and two sets of planets are directly opposite or opposing each other.

In astrological terms, planets at 90° "square" each other. The relationship of the planets to each other in the sky creates a certain energy that is felt and played out in our earthly experiences. Squares and oppositions give us energy to do things. They motivate and often provoke us to take action. The Grand Cross of August 11 combines 4 squares and 2 oppositions, all at the same time, plus a solar eclipse! In sum, there is a tremendous amount of energy that needs to be put to use, to be expressed or to be dedicated to a goal.

This astrological configuration not only gives us the energy to get things done, it contains the greatest potential for growth. Most of us have already realized that growth is not always easy. This is why in astrology the squares and the oppositions are called "hard" aspects. The "hard" aspects are always challenging, but the struggle and pain come when we resist our lessons. Combined with an attitude of commitment and dedication to something we truly believe in, this energy can be very rewarding and productive. The secret is to cooperate with it, to consciously handle our challenges, and to take advantage of the energy to create our dreams and accomplish our goals.

The amount of energy available in grand crosses, like it or not, accelerates the human growth process. We face simultaneous challenges and are forced to make decisions that will result in complete and total life changes. "The reward for handling the energy positively is the potential to make a huge evolutionary leap". We may experience that this energy challenges us to make big changes "right now!" I have personally felt like there are many things that need to be done all at once. I have also witnessed multiple things magically fall into place when my intent is clear and my actions are one-pointed.

What Kind of Change?

What kind of change can we look forward to? First we have to get acquainted with the players. Saturn in Taurus is in opposition to Mars in Scorpio. Saturn teaches us our lessons without compromise and is willing to wait it out until we wake-up, look at what is really happening and make the appropriate changes in our consciousness and life style. Taurus is determined to get its needs met, wants beauty and honors the Earth and its resources.

Scorpionic energy ensures that our lessons will be deep, meaningful and long-lasting. The Mars urge demands action, is aggressive and keeps the foot on the accelerator. Pressure cooker and time bomb are two ways to characterize this combination.

Then there is the eclipse in Leo which opposes Uranus in Aquarius. Both eclipses and Uranian energies are unpredictable, volatile and electric. Leo the Lion wants to be noticed. Unconscious Leos are egotistical and demand attention. Evolved Leos attract attention because they are individualized beings who use their special talents to offer their creations to the world. Aquarian energy is detached, revolutionary and dedicated to change, brotherhood and universal principles.

Add the squares or the 90° interactions. Mars square Uranus creates energy that is fast-acting, trigger happy, rebellious, unrepressed and in search of a cause or a fight.

Saturn square Uranus creates energy that pushes us to wake-up and take quick and drastic action for a worthy cause.

The Sun and the Moon squared Mars set the stage for lots of high drama, internally and externally.

The Sun and the Moon squared Saturn says "Just do it!"-take unemotional, detached action and get the job done.

Aquarius, Scorpio, Taurus and Leo are "fixed" signs. It is their nature to use, accumulate and maintain power. They embody will, determination, and fixity of purpose. They do not let go easily or willingly. They are interested in resources and values. Fixed signs reveal our desires and motives. When they are in "hard" aspect to each other (squares and oppositions) they challenge us, create stress and tension and present us with conflicting values. The release of the tension is inevitable and it is often as dramatic as earthquakes and volcanoes.

Kim Rogers-Gallagher explains - "Squares are internalized arguments, but oppositions are open debates. With so much of that confrontative energy grinding against itself, this grand cross will present situations that force us to act, and to make choices - maybe tough choices. The fixed signs mean that change is inevitable, and that it's going to be permanent, too". )

This combination of planetary actors and their moods (signs i.e. Aquarius, Scorpio, Taurus and Leo) confront us with powerful and contradictory energies. There is no way to predict what can or will happen. Although it is pretty safe to say that our level of consciousness (or unconsciousness) will determine the nature and the quality of what we will experience individually and collectively. What is certain is that something is brewing that we cannot ignore and must meet head on with committed action.

Implications – Take Wise Action

What does this mean for each of us personally? Many of us see the events of our lives unfold into a pattern and a deeper purpose. We know what we have to do and in many cases it corresponds to what we have wanted to do for a long time. If we do not know what "it" is yet, we feel intensely motivated to find out. If you do not know, tune into our own inner guidance and ask for clarity. Then attentively watch and listen for the answer. Our directives may also hit us right in the face. Whatever we feel directed to do, the key is to USE the energy. Do something with it! Choose to implement a project, move on something that you have been wanting to do for a long time and not quite had the guts or resources to bring into life.

If your reaction is "Where can I hide this one out?", the answer is "You can't!" No one is just going to sit this one out. Either we choose to take action, or action will be taken for us. (i.e. accidents, demotions, being evicted, losing jobs or even life itself.) This energy cannot be silently endured. The explosiveness of this energy will force us to grow, to change, to evolve. If we are wise we will take advantage of the opportunities that are being presented. It is time to be bold and courageous.

Recent "accidents" (JFK Jr.'s death the most poignant) are very "Uranian"-surprising. Since Uranus energy is one arm of the grand cross, we must know how to deal with it. Bold action does not mean taking unwise risks. The stakes are too high. Be prudent in your actions in terms of your personal safety. Don't run yellow lights. Don't speed on your motor cycle or in your car. Don't fly in the fog. Don't accumulate more debt. Let vigilance, not worry, be your touchstone. Tune into your intuition and follow it. You will be guided.

Uranian energy can produce miracles and magic. It can also precipitate mistakes. Some believe there are no mistakes, just alternate plans. Since the alternatives may not be desirable, do your best to make wise decisions when your body and physical possessions are involved. We are co-creators of our reality. What we think, say and do does make a difference, i.e. what we cause has an effect.

Use your courage to do your destiny. If you have identified your dream, define it as a realistic project and take steps to make it happen. It could happen very quickly, almost supernaturally and with surprising results. In order to take advantage of the energy and the opportunities that lie before us, we must act with courage, be self-reliant and be willing to take initiative. In sum, get busy, concentrate, get and stay involved in your project, keep focused on your goal, act with total integrity and dare to keep your eyes open as you ride the crest of the wave of your destiny.

If you are still discovering your purpose in life, be open to a change in direction, initiate a life style or values change. For example, watch less TV and start a reading program. Begin an exercise program. Start or add to your spiritual practice. Stop eating refined sugar and red meat. Clean out your closets and drawers. Plant seeds of openness and non-judgment in your own consciousness. Plant a tree and some flowers in your yard. Befriend the unknown and welcome the unexpected.

In either case, go with the flow of events. If we resist, things will just get worse. Do something different. Do the same old things in different ways. Consider yourself an inventor of a new reality and adventure into that reality with the gleeful spirit of a young child.

The New Millennium

The signs of the fixed cross - Aquarius, Leo, Taurus and Scorpio, are referred to in Revelations (Bible) as the four beasts of the apocalypse. Many forecast that this eclipse will set off a wave of terrorism, tragedy, war, disease, and natural disasters. Others of us see the eclipse as a turning point - the breakdowns that occur in our political, economic and social systems will clear the way to create new structures that are in harmony with higher order and values.

In terms of global changes, here is a list of descriptions of what could be manifestations of the energy being unleashed in this eclipse.

As Maya del Mar points out, "Old ways of seeing and working with resources-land-money will no longer work. This is not news. The news is that we have the opportunity now to make that breakthrough in realignment of consciousness". (p.14)

The planetary line up on August 11 could well lay the foundation for the end of the world as we know it and for a new one to emerge in the 21st Century. The inappropriateness of many cherished belief systems, dogmas and systems will be exposed. This may come as a shock to many. For others it will be a welcome relief. The important thing is that we will realize that there is much more meaning, beauty and depth to life than we had ever imagined.

There will be many changes in our personal, interpersonal and collective lives. Not all of these changes will be peaceful or what we consider desirable. From time to time we may feel that we are on the grand cross ourselves, being pulled in four different directions. Our greatest challenges are to act with integrity and from our hearts, to work for the well-being of all and to honor the Earth. It is a time of personal and collective empowerment. It is a time to extricate ourselves from all forms of victimization. For better or worse, we are the co-creators of the new millennium. For many of us, this is the moment we have been preparing for. It is time to step forward and participate in the creation of a peaceful, equitable and sustainable world. Our conscious (and unconscious) choices will determine what we create.

Yogi Bhajan
Message from Yogi Bhajan

Yogi Bhajan has given us the message that from July 28th to August 11th particularly, "Do sadhana or God bless you". He also said that the astrological configurations of the August 11th Solar Eclipse were last experienced at the onset of the Fall of the Roman Empire. He said the energy unleashed at this eclipse will carry you either toward the light or away from the light depending on how you use it. It is an energy that cannot be avoided - it must be put to good use. It can propel you on your destiny path.

How Can We Prepare?

In terms of our own personal preparation, it is important to realize that the energies being unleashed may bring up feelings of anger, frustration, nervousness, panic and powerlessness. Yogically these are navel point or third chakra energies. The above expressions indicate a weak navel point. When our navel center is strong, we experience our own strength; we project our unique identity; we feel empowered to take action; we can commit to our goals and are motivated to use our energy to make our unique contribution. Therefore, our personal preparation will optimally include exercises to strengthen the navel point. In a crunch remember, breath of fire is the primo navel breath.

The deep emotions we are experiencing are also solar plexus energies. After we establish a sense of our physical presence (and can hold on to it) at the navel chakra, we must dive into our solar plexus to make our way to our heart.

It is interesting how astrologically it all fits. The emotional component (the moon) of this eclipse is directing us to plunge into the depth of our non-verbal being. (solar plexus) Saturn (in Taurus), the task master, warns us it will be work, but it will be worth it. Because after we anchor ourselves in our values, establish our boundaries, and honor and enjoy our bodies and the Earth (Taurus), we will find freedom (the goal of all those Saturn lessons!).

Mars (in Scorpio) gives us the energy, motivation and discipline to get the job done and Scorpio guarantees that the process is deep and meaningful. Uranus is going to make sure there are plenty of surprises, which can come in unpredictable packages including accidents, miracles and out-of-the-blue events. Aquarius sets the context of enlightened humane change for the highest good of all. Aquarius trusts we will all be friends once we make it to our heart.

Our Project is The Self

The eclipse is reminding us that our ultimate project is the project of the Self. (Sun in Leo is the sign of the individualized Self) It is time to get to know ourselves. The bad news is we can't blame others or look outside ourselves for answers anymore. The good news is that we can feel real, authentic and empowered and directed by our own Soul. (Leo the Lion) This solar eclipse speeds up our individuation process and stimulates our creativity. Our creativity bubbles forth from who we are. It is an auspicious time to switch our mantra from "I do" to "I am". To further establish our Soul identity, we can change our inner conversation from "I want" to "I am".

A spiritual practice is highly recommended at this time. Kundalini Yoga sets to release anger, strengthen the navel center and transmute our primal emotions into Soul power would be particularity beneficial.(2) At the same time, take action on something that is important to you, acknowledge and take care of yourself and have fun doing both! And periodically, especially when challenged, in doubt or discouraged, remember to celebrate your precious life. Celebration and gratitude transmute the darkness of pain and ignorance into the light of the Soul.

Transitions to a Heart Centered World by Guru Rattana, Ph.D.

Transitions to a Heart-Centered World by Guru Rattana, Ph.D., is a rich and unique compilation of the core teachings and Kundalini Yoga kriyas and meditations of Yogi Bhajan.

The new Second Edition, revised and updated,is ready to welcome a whole new generation of students to this life-changing technology. It offers powerful and effective techniques to both teacher and student, to empower your lower chakras and open your heart to unconditional love.

Contains literally dozens of meditations to access heart and soul consciousness.

Special Healing Meditation

In addition to morning sadhana, as a part of it, or as an evening meditation, here is a meditation that can be done for 11, 22 or 31-minutes. This is a very blissful meditation that keeps you in your body. When you need help chant this mantra. Calling on Guru Ram Das produces healing, magic and miracles. Enjoy!

References and Footnotes

1. The other one was the Harmonic Convergence November 11, 1988. (11/11/88) - June-July 1999 Mountain Astrologer, "Millennium form: The Solar Eclipse of August 1999. pp. 10-23.

2. Many of these sets are found in my manual Transitions to a Heart-Centered World.


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