On November 7th, the Sun will enter 15 degrees of Scorpio. This is the midway point between the autumnal equinox and the winter solstice. At this time of the year, nature begins to change as plants wither, the trees lose their leaves and all the colors of the spring and summer fade away. For nature it is a time of death and decay.
The astrological sign of Scorpio is symbolized by the scorpion, the eagle and the phoenix. The scorpion represents our lower nature and corresponds with our basic instincts for survival, self-preservation and procreation. The scorpion is well known for its ability to survive in the harshest of conditions. The eagle or hawk symbolizes our higher nature. It is that force which pushes us beyond our own ego boundaries to seek higher levels of consciousness and truth. The hawk sees things from a higher perspective than the scorpion on the ground. The phoenix represents the highest aspect of Scorpio. The phoenix is the mythical bird that dies and rises from its own ashes. It is that force which brings about self-sacrifice and the impetus to sacrifice one’s self for other people and one’s ideals. The phoenix also represents resurrection after death. Our spirit is reborn following the death of the physical body to a higher state of consciousness and reality. The sign of Scorpio teaches us that nothing ever really dies. It just changes forms or undergoes trans(form)ation. When we die our physical body dissolves back into the earth, but our consciousness continues on in another form and in another dimension. The majority of the world’s religions espouse the belief of life after death. And the majority of people believe in life after death whether they are religious or not. The resurrection of Jesus was something that not only Christ did, but what we will all do. Like the rose that dies after the fall and returns in the spring, so shall we be reborn after our physical bodies wither away and be reborn anew. This is the lesson of the phoenix.
The Pagans celebrate this time period as Samhain or the “Day of the Dead”. It is considered a time when the veil between worlds is thin and contact can be made with those people that have passed on. We also celebrate this time period as Halloween where little children dress up as ghosts and goblins. Many people participate in the custom of carving pumpkins to make “jack-o-lanterns”. I really enjoy this little ritual of finding the right pumpkin and then carving it to be lit at night for all to see. Symbolically it is very interesting as it represents bringing light into the darkness and bringing the light of the consciousness to the mysteries of our unconsciousness.
The Hermetic ritual that is done at this time of year is “The Petition to the Spirit of Water”. The ritual consists of preparing a scroll and writing a prayer or petition to the spirit of the water element for protection, good health and happyness. It can be protection from negativity, unseen or hostile forces, or whatever you may need protection from. It is also a good ritual to seek protection from fears and anxieties that may be hampering your well-being. Once you have prepared your scroll, you should than find a stone or a rock. Roll up your scroll and tie it to the rock with some string or ribbon. Then you should find a pond or a river where you will toss your scroll with the rock into the water. You can say a brief prayer before tossing your scroll into the water. The spirit of the water element will then bring your petition to fruition. I really enjoy this ritual. I look forward every year to finding a secluded river or pond where I can complete this ritual with the water element. From a yogic perspective, this ritual corresponds with the Swadisthana chakra center and activates this energy to help in your spiritual practices and development.
For further information, please see my book, Yoga and The Art of Astral Projection.