Wrestling with God – Fallen Angel Israel
Israel became an independent state only sixty years ago, but its history reaches back to the times of the Old Testament and the origins of the Jewish faith to whose followers the Land of Israel is sacred. Many times during its long history have the Israelite kingdoms and states been conquered and their Jewish population persecuted and dispersed from the region. Since Israel’s declaration of independence the boundaries of this state and its right to exist have been subject to dispute and led to wars with the neighboring Arab countries. These conflicts have only intensified after Israel was victorious in the wars and expanded its borders. In due process and with the support of its allies, the state of Israel became an aggressor, heavily relying on its military superiority in this region, supplied with weaponry from the Pentagon. It started another war at the time of the New Moon of December 27, 2008, for which it had well prepared beforehand and subsequently invaded Palestine amidst international protests. In a string of war crimes, over 1200 Palestinians have been killed and thousands more wounded with half of them civilians and children. Gaza has been massively damaged and its soil and water poisoned for decades to come. The humanitarian conditions are worse than one could possibly imagine. A merciless military machine, Israel brings death and destruction to this already conflict-torn region and its poor, desperate population. With the backing of its powerful and now only ally, Israel violated the laws established by the Geneva Convention as it ruthlessly pursued a strategy of collective punishment, which seems to be an act of ethnic cleansing. Israel’s overly defensive stand together with such a disproportionate reaction to the continuing provocations of the insurgency is not solely based on the ambitions of the military-industrial complex. Casting a long and dark shadow, the past of the Jewish people holds a strong grip on the psyche of these people.
If we look at the chart for the state of Israel, which I posted above, we find all these themes resembled in symbolical language, because a horoscope is a picture-perfect reflection or snapshot of the entity that gives insight into the archetypal dynamics, which weave its fate in space-time.
In the circle of houses of the astrological chart, the water houses (4, 8, 12) are related to the layers of the unconscious, indicating what lies below the threshold of awareness, because these themes don’t reveal themselves in reasoning, but through feelings and intuition.
Placed in the house of his natural rulership, Neptune is located in the 12th house in the sign Libra and retrograde. A retrograde planet symbolizes an inward turned energy, representing an interception in time. Mystical Neptune swimming this ocean of timelessness is extremely elusive here, requiring a very deep and long dive into the unknown for the seeker after enlightenment. Phantasmal scenarios can captivate the senses, leading to illusive, idealized thinking and devotion to mysticism and sanctity. Depicted with a trident, the mythological figure of Neptune encompasses the triad of victim, perpetrator and redeemer tied together by the invisible thread of the imagination, perpetuating a seemingly eternal karmic cycle of longing and suffering.
Having faced extinction several times throughout its history, which culminated with the Holocaust, the Jewish people, making up the majority of the population of Israel, have been victimized, persecuted, tortured and killed during those ordeals. Such dark and terrifying experiences leave an indelible stain in the psychic body that covers the soul with a heavy cloak and raises the deepest fears when feeling threatened. Naturally, the slightest provocation could evoke a wave of uncontrollable feelings, thereby triggering the hidden psychic contents. Neptune, wearing Libra’s colors, represents a need for balance regarding the real and the surreal to become aware of the underlying relationship dynamics. As the sign of the scales, Libra is moreover associated with our sense of evaluation, indicating that instinctive and projective factors are distorting the proper assessment of the issues at hand. Conclusively, a psychic drama unfolds; role playing takes place on an unaccessible stratum of the mind, whereby the roles are interchangeable. Appropriately for the 12th house theme, faith in divine providence has a most significant part in this ‘drama’. Jahveh, the revengeful God figure at the centre of Judaic faith, serves as inspiration for the role of the redeemer, whose will has to be obeyed to not incur punishment. A powerful psychological intent like this can go both ways. Virgo on the cusp of the 12th house tracks the rulership to Mercury in Gemini in house 8, who is connected by a partile trine to Neptune. This dignified Mercury should lend a sound dose of rationality to these themes were it not positioned in an area of the chart related to the subconscious and the trine such an easily flowing aspect that retains the perfect harmony in this planetary dialogue. Mercury emphasizes the link to the scriptures, which have been followed to the letter with painstaking regularity as these are the source of those people’s inherited karma.
Ceres, a symbol of the maternal and cyclical, is conjunct Mercury, showing the ceremonial aspect blended with an overshadowed cerebral function in a dance of cyclical renewal or resurrection of this psychic component, providing “mind stuff”, in a series of interplays of the opposites. In the light, airy Gemini energies, there’s only a scratching of the surface of the subject. Consequently, texts are seen as informal and interpretation tends to be literal. By connection to these two houses (8 and 12) the message is unquestionable; it is the ultimate piece of wisdom and revelation, leading the ‘chosen people’ directly to the ‘Promised Land’. “In God we shall trust.”
Ueber-religiosity is restated by a dignified Jupiter in Sagittarius in Mercury’s natural house – the 3rd house of the conscious mind. Jupiter too is retrograde; another sign of imbalance and an internalizing process happening on the mental level. Jupiter roams freely and joyfully in his own sign, enlarging opinionatedness and giving rise to intolerance and righteousness. When exaggaration and excess prevail things can get out of hand and blown out of proportion. Perception and cognition are immensely projective and compensatory; the truth is written with a capital T and it is the only truth there is. On the other end, this energy instils grand missions and allows for mind expansion and exploration in form of scholasticism and other philosophies. Obviously, theirs has been a very long quest for the Holy Grail or Promised Land, although religious teachings enrich the daily life significantly. They may represent an inexhaustible quell of great wisdom, though only if truly understood will they convey universal truths.
An 8th house Sun in Taurus shines light on the cumulative, persistent nature of these people, their attachment to matter or the tangible aspect of the equation and their life path of transformations or ‘incarnations’ that has an repetitive character. Moreover, the materialistic inclinations of these people have actually ‘attracted’ the ‘forces of darkness’ and led to their persecution. On the other hand, the ordeals they endured in the past have granted them a certain ‘taboo’ status. Currently, this ‘seal’ has been broken. Israel’s latest actions were damaging to its reputation among the world community. The Sun is the dispositor over the extraordinary Leo stellium in the 10th house, consisting of the Moon, Pluto and Saturn. But the Moon as ruler over the Midheaven lends a fluctuating influence to this.One of the angles of the chart, the 10th house refers to the time of day where the Sun stands highest in the sky. Thus, ambitions and public standing are the themes of this house. With Cancer on the cusp the homeland is a matter of highest priority. Traditions and anchestry bestow tremendous pride in addition to an elitist attitude. The regal presence of Leo in this house and over the stellium shows self-confidence and emphasizes personal importance, underpinning the notion to take charge, impose the rules and reign, especially with both parental archetypes (Moon and Saturn) in an embrace with power (Pluto). This also explains Israel’s feelings of entitlement, the abuse of power as a psychic pattern underlying the roles of oppressed and oppressor, whereby the intensified experiences of light and shadow are integral to personality formation.
Noteworthy is furthermore Vesta in the last degree of Cancer in the position of highest elevation with the Sabian Symbol: “A daughter of the American Revolution. Keynote: The prestige and conservatism of a long-maintained heritage – Glorification of the past.” (Dane Rudhyar, “An Astrological Mandala: The Cycle of Transformations and Its 360 Symbolic Phases”, Page 130)
I couldn’t think of a more fitting description of synthesis. A symbol of the spiritual element in man and other sacred spaces, Vesta is the goddess of hearth and altar, the centers of home and church, where the element of fire is tended for. For the people of Israel it tells not only what they hold sacred and for which causes their flame is burning or what is at the core of their spiritual devotion. The “parent-child” relationship between the USA and Israel highlights also its destiny. There are farther reaching implications as well as obligations than the current and latest parental support they’ve received regarding their military endeavors and which assisted this country to come into existence and to become powerful and influential. In a larger cosmic and planetary framework, the USA as the “New World” is considered to be the birthplace for a “new humanity”. Conclusively, the “daughter of the American Revolution” should continue this legacy, only in “her zone of influence”, which would be among the Arabic nations. In the same way as the USA is undergoing several transformations (or initiations in a spiritual sense), is Israel following this ‘inherited’ pattern.
Destiny exerts a strong pull, propelling the nation and state of Israel forward to perform their role. They certainly got endowed with all the attributes, qualities and potential needed for this purpose. Unshakable faith, a strong will and a fierce stand are measurements of personal power, which can lead to greatness. If utilized for the benefit of all, peaceful co-existing and material as well as spiritual prosperity will ensue. When the word becomes the wisdom of the heart, giving birth to compassion, empathy and forgiveness, religion turns into spirituality and the knowing of being chosen will acquire a new meaning, because then they will truly inhabit the Promised Land. Currently, this nation has fallen from grace and wrestles with God as portrayed in the story of Israel, their Patriarch.
According to the Wikipedia, where I researched this story, was Jacob the third of the Biblical Patriarchs, who was renamed Israel after he wrestled with an angel during one night out in the wilderness. “One who has prevailed with God” is the translation for the name Israel, which also constitutes the “Promised Land” to the Elect People. At this point I want to clarify that these stories and texts stem from a period of history that antedates ours by millenia. From the linguistic style presented in such books as the Bible we can conclude that those ancient people conversed in a language consistent of symbols and metaphors appropriate for the prevailent mentality defining these epochs. Recounts of events and stories as well as the feelings and impressions accompanying them must necessarily differ considerably from our contemporary style. Therefore, we can’t take those accounts and records as factual statements. What is more likely and shall become evident as I proceed is that we’re entering the world of myth here.
Jacob’s life serves as a parallel for his descendants – the Jewish people; an ethno-religious community of Judaic faith, which was the first monotheistic religion and is a very important detail in this context.
The belief in only one God emerged together with the sense of Self (as within so without) when the process of individuation began to work in earnest. I AM THAT I AM (the Tetragrammaton) is the most popular statement used in this context to which reference is also made in Jacob’s story.
Rebecca, Jacob’s mother, was carrying twins without knowing it. Their strange behavior had her suffering and wondering whether her unborn child was schizophrenic . One of the twins (Jacob) wanted to spring forth when she passed houses, where the Torah was studied, and the other one (Esau) wanted to spring forth when she passed houses, where idolatry was committed. Thus, she inquired about the condition of her unborn child. It was prophesized to her that she would give birth to twins, who would continue to fight all their lives and that the older would serve the younger. In a later passage of this story shall Rebbeca rely on prophecies again (“she prophetically overhears”).
Regarded often as divine or prophetic power is the human sense of intuition, a psychic function related to the right hemisphere of the brain and thus a predominantly female quality. What this means is that a psychic ability was already present (psyche is the Greek term for the human soul), a higher sensitivity to the environment (as opposed to primal instincts), that “gave birth” to a “split personality”, the two aspects of man’s nature.
Esau was the first-born of the twins, resembling the animalistic nature of man; not only by his appearance (red skin covered with hair) and because he was first, but also by his “shortcomings”, such as his affinity for idolatry, his lack of intelligence and that he never spoke of God. Besides, his name means “completely developed”. Apparently, his ancestral line had reached a stage of completion.
Jacob (or “he who follows”) followed on his heels, which is a metaphor for a weakness in spite of overall strength (as in Achilles’ heels). This weakness of course is a latent mental faculty. So, the development of the physical body was complete (the generic racial structure), which readied the being for the “next step” in evolution – the development of the psychic bodies, including the ego and the formation of the higher mind.
Ego-related struggles shall become evident throughout the story, whether in form of cunning or in the lessons of Saturn – the 7 years of servitude in a “foreign land”– which Jacob had to endure twice (the Saturn returns) in order to get what he desired – Rachel’s hand in marriage (marriage in heaven or the second birth). As Jacob “outsmarted” Esau for the birthright (and answered his father’s question with I AM), the natural order of things was disrupted and succeeded by a “higher order”, reminiscent of the divine nature in man, beautifully illustrated in Jacob’s ladder that provides us with another metaphor – the classical angel and beast version that refers to the descent of spirit into life in form of lower consciousness and the ascent of an evolving consciousness toward spirit. Here, Jacob was also promised that his descendants would overcome Esau’s at the end of days – mind will win over matter or brains over brawns.
Jacob’s descendants are the 12 tribes of Israel, portraying the 12-fold process of individualization (the 12 signs of the tropical zodiac or the 12 labors of Hercules) for the development of a higher consciousness. His son Joseph by Rachel is the 11th born, symbolizing reflective consciousness (the number 11 is the higher vibration of 2 and pertains to heightened awareness) as interpreter of dreams with the ability to analyze, correlate and deduce. Important to note for symbolical relevancy is the connection between Joseph and Rachel.
Upon his return home after the years of servitude, which he left behind as a “rich man” due to tricking his father-in-law, he has to face his brother Esau again. This prospect fills him with fear, especially when he got to know the strength of his brother’s army that was sent his way. – Conclusively, all these years he spent ‘in service’, he committed his energies toward the development of the higher mind, which left the physical body in a state of abandon and imbalance. Thus, the animalistic drives emerged with a vengeance, seeking gratification of the physical appetites (the state of imbalance has already been announced when God advised Jacob that he had enough and should leave). To address these desires, Jacob gave some of his possessions to his brother (lower desires are appeased by material things) and spent the night in the wilderness in communion with God, where the mysterious being appeared (a man or an angel or even God – according to the different sources) with whom he wrestled until daybreak. Jacob wasn’t defeated. He “prevailed with God” (the higher consciousness prevailed). This episode of the story pertains to the part where Jacob received the name Israel. It tells in symbolical terms about his “dark night of the soul”, the last phase of his personal initiation ritual, after which a new name is bestowed upon the aspirant, which is considered to be the “true name” of the person.
So, by mastering the various stages of personality integration, Jacob became increasingly self-aware and at the same time did his ego grow stronger (the ego is a psychic structure and the formative aspect of the process of individualization). An unchecked ego tends to usurp the true Self (Jacob battling the angel). To be always aware of that ‘danger’, the struggle left Jacob with a limp that shall remind him of the impediments associated with the ego.
For his descendants, most of these “dark nights of the soul” happened in Egypt, land of the ‘black earth’ (or dark matter), involving the building of the temple (manifestation of the higher consciousness) and the Exodus, the story of Moses leading his people to the Promised Land and presenting them with the tablet of laws (the basis for religion and civilization), for which they had to wander through the desert for 40 years. In other words, they had to conquer the wilderness of sin, which would lead them to the “mountain of God” (Mount Sinai). The desert is a metaphor for a spiritual wasteland due to its barrenness. It is moreover a habitat of the Scorpion, symbol of transformation. Forty is the number of weeks of pregnancy, which in this case refers to a period of spiritual gestation and the Land promised by God is the promise of evolution of the consciousness.
So, the narrative of the Patriarch Israel refers to the part of the creation story, where a new ‘prototype’ or race model emerged for the human race as man began to develop an ego. Quite obviously, the “Elect People” is a term, referring to all members of humanity as evolution works through the race or species, which is paraphrased in the Biblical statement that man (as the highest evolved form of life on this planet) is made in God’s image. For the nation of Israel it is particularly important to instigate this process as the chart’s message can be taken as a set of instructions toward transformation. Not only is the Sun found in Pluto’s natural house – the 8th house of the horoscope – Pluto himself is placed in an angle, nestled between the maternal and paternal archetypes. Additionally, Chiron, symbol of the wounding and healing principle, is positioned in Scorpio together with the South Node in the 1st house and conjunct the 2nd house cusp, elucidating that these people possess inherent and intensified transformative potencies. As I outlined above, they’re gifted with talents, qualities and potential that would enable them to be “the chosen ones” for their region once they use their superior achievements for beneficial purposes, involving all concerned. First though, they need to overcome their demons by stepping out of the shadow into the light and remembering their ‘divine birthright’ (see also Juno in Pisces in 5). It’s time to build a new temple for the soul and to follow the commandments of the sacred tablet, which forbid murder, greed, bias and injustice. Strategies of war and aggression have to be replaced by an initiative to reach agreements and find common grounds for cooperation with their important others (neighboring countries) is suggested by Pallas in Aries’ conjunction with the Descendant and opposition to the Ascendant, which can be taken as employing a tactic of alignment with the relationship axis – awareness of Self assists in developing awareness of others.