78: ON WHOSE AUTHORITY?
THU 17 AUG 13.29 - Mooning Monthly rewriting the rule book
Happy days Mooners
The Full Moon gets all big and shiny in Aquarius this Thursday lunchtime. Aquarius influence provides a considered intelligence to the usual lunacy of full moon proceedings. Full moons tend to heighten our physical, mental and emotional states, tickling the trickiest of our triggers into unpremeditated outbursts that we can later regret. A modicum of measured thoughtfulness should therefore be welcomed.
An enhanced mindfulness of our responses to external circumstances before leaping into hasty, inappropriate judgements and harmful actions will benefit everyone. This week's negative judgements are as likely to be directed at ourselves as others and will subtly undermine our inherent power to determine our own life experience from the situations unfolding around us. Frankly, we could do without them.
An Aquarius inspired, conscious 'pause' (just breathe in and count to ten) between external stimuli and our reaction to them, can allow greater awareness of our habitual behavioural responses this week. This should enable us to choose how we respond to stuff rather than slavishly following our immediate, often negative, fear induced, reactions. It's a creative process that can, quite literally, change our world and one that we like to refer to in these columns as Mooning.
The process can be likened to writing, directing and acting out the story line of our own soap opera. As author, director and lead actor of the piece, the object of the exercise becomes, ironically, to minimise the amount of 'drama' being played out. Even when circumstance presents us with a problematic scene containing other actors intent on departing from our carefully constructed script, we mooners would hope to remain observant of any emerging sub plots to avoid distraction or deflection from the narrative we ultimately wish to create.
Many wisdom traditions suggest we are authors of our own life experience; that we create our own reality from the cards we are dealt. Some traditions even liken humans to Gods with creative powers beyond our own understanding. Marvel Comics and their Hollywood film offshoots have created a multi billion dollar industry that perpetuates the idea whilst keeping superhero power in the unobtainable realm of digital fantasy. However, in becoming more conscious of the stories we continually spin and then act out, we can access our own inherent super powers of intuitive decision making and self determination.
Author and authority share the same Latin etymological root: auctor, meaning master, leader; commanding inventiveness. Whether we are aware of the process or not, the lives we lead are largely built around the stories we tell about ourselves to ourselves and others. The things that we say we can't do are as significant in shaping our life experience as the stuff we know we can. At best, our beliefs about our capacities are informed by direct experience, however, most of what we think of ourselves has been programmed through our social and cultural conditioning.
Our upbringing as children will be central to our belief system, and as we spread our wings in adolescence, our egos start to consolidate into attached notions of who we are as personalities. We become familiar with certain ideas/beliefs about ourselves which limits what we consider appropriate to experience; a belief being, quite literally, a story or thought that we tell ourselves often enough to believe.
As adults. we come to identify with normative labels and behaviour associated with gender, ethnicity, sexuality, ideology, relationships, religion, nationality, football teams, dietary preferences or favourite consumer brands. We rather naively see our affiliations as aspects of ourselves rather than the gradually built but generally predictable demographic profile so sought after by market research companies.
The desirable narratives of our lives are periodically challenged by changes in external circumstance: the death of a loved one; a relationship break down; illness; serious accidents, and these often bring a temporary suspension in self-perception as everything that we think we are gets reappraised. After the shock of the new has been assimilated our belief systems can actually become more deeply entrenched and restrictive. We have been hurt and feel damaged. If we experience pain we defend ourselves from future 'attack' - manifesting a further contraction in the field of possibility we allow our life experience to access. It requires continual attention to maintain an attitude of openness when the person we think ourselves to be is in torment and crying out to be defended.
So, under this Aquarius Full Moon, the question begs to be asked, "Who is the author of my personal story and on whose authority is it written?"
Are we the authors of the tale or do we consider ourselves little more than victims of other people's stories, decision making and the vagaries of circumstance? If we find ourselves victims of circumstance how do we start writing the part we want to play in our version of events? How do we become the ultimate authority for the part we play in every circumstance?
Here's a fourfold plan:
1. Rigorous honesty with ourselves.
A little Aquarius inspired, mooning reflection this week may reveal that who we believe ourselves to be is a composite of social and cultural conditioning. We accept certain normative values as truths which in reality vary enormously, dependent on geographic and cultural context. Our judgements of self and others regarding beliefs, behaviour, body image (etc) have their root in external values determined by agencies with some questionable agendas: religion, education, entertainment, news reporting and social media to name but a few.
Hollywood has prescribed our notions of beauty, happiness and success in pursuit of a consumerist ideology. The picture painted is a false idol whose unconsidered worship leaves us feeling dissatisfied, worthless and ugly as if somehow one can 'fail' at living. One can never fail at living as long as one is alive. One only 'fails' to achieve prescribed social norms that are believed to be a 'success'. If those norms are recognised as nothing more than a mental construct they lose their deep seated traction on our outlook. This realisation aims not to discredit social norms entirely but allows us the liberty to choose how we think, speak and act independently of their overarching, bullying influence.
This would be a great week to observe one's motivations for action in life to gauge how many are devoid of external social influence. As we pick up our mobile phones to check the internet and our messages, let's reserve a few seconds to be consciously aware of what/who we're engaging with and why. Under this Aquarius Full Moon, rigorous honesty with the self will translate itself naturally to kind honesty with others.
2. Take responsibility.
Our inherited patterns of thinking are similarly suspect concoctions based largely on divisive ideas and perceptions rather than truth. Whose ideas? Whose perceptions? Whose truth? Under examination the answers to these questions (and all others) can only be experienced through the lens of the observer - the self - subject once again to the filters of our conditioning. In taking responsibility for our thoughts, words and actions, regardless of circumstance, we command authority in our life experience. To understand that in all circumstances we have a creative hand in what is experienced, is to unlock our inherent power to manifest at will. Nothing then is wasted. Everything has value. We begin to align with the creative force of life itself.
This would be the week to take full responsibility for any perceived mistakes, upset or harm we may have caused, however inadvertently. Now is the time to not go into immediate defensive mode when accused of mishaps. This is the week to fess up, apologise, resolve not to make the same mistake again and let things go, just to see what happens....
3. Breathe in and count to ten.
Those touched by the calming influence of this Aquarius Full Moon might naturally enjoy some respite from the usual withering lunar illumination of the subconscious. This can be purposefully enhanced by a little conscious awareness as one feels one's heckles rising over the next few days. Before reacting, whether to a news story; a provocation from lover, friend or family; aggressive, abusive road users or unsolicited sales calls (etc) let's employ the time honoured technique of taking a deep breath and counting to ten. As we count, let's observe the sensations embodied by our reactions. Are those sensations enjoyable, helpful or desirable? If not, why entertain them? Let's allow them to dissipate during the count of ten and return to a state of untroubled equilibrium. The world moves on.
This would be the week to dwell on nothing negative. What has happened is forever in the past. The future does not yet exist. We breathe and count to ten. We find ourselves here, now. We are. We moon.
Full moons are times of harvest, when we take time to note what we have reaped from our previously sown seeds of intent. This Aquarius Full Moon is no exception. The blackberries are now sweet, swelling and bountiful in the hedgerows. Let's walk out to find them. Pick with love. Eat the fruit, savour the flavour with gratitude for the ever generous, intelligent planet that sustains our very being. We should care for her.
With love 'til next time
Fellow mooner, Bob Weighton, the oldest man in Britain May 2019 Photograph courtesy of Timothy Tyndale