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Pluto, which is Standing Still today (that means it’s influence is much Stronger than usual) represents Transformation. Since we only see the shadows of “Reality” on our cave wall – which means that the small part of it that our six senses allow us to Witness is filtered through our Limiting Beliefs – we usually spell that “Trance(Re)Formation.” That is, the Trance that our Limiting Beliefs impose upon us, is up for revision. Another word we often associate with Pluto is Mandatory or Compulsive. Shifts promulgated by Pluto are often just that – not optional. We often perceive them as happening to us rather than something we Created, and since we usually see Pluto as bigger than the Individual, there’s a large grain of Truth there.
There are obviously many many facets and flavors of Ego Death running around, and Pluto qualifies as a trigger for that, though there are multiple other triggers as well. But what most folks consider the Bigger Transformation is when we Change Vehicles, or Let Go of our current Physical Body. Here’s a long-time palliative care nurse (that means nursing to the Dying) listing the most frequent Regrets that people have as they’re Letting Go of their Body…
The most frequent Regret is…
“I wish I’d had the courage to live a life true to myself, not the life others expected of me.”
That’s the Yintegrity we’ve been talking about for the last several years as we’ve worked through our 2012-15 Uranus-Pluto adventures. The third-most frequent Regret is…
“I wish I’d had the courage to express my feelings.”
Which we’ve been talking about in the previous post. Reading that post, you may well come up against a Dilemma. If no one is willing to hear them, what to do? There are only so many Pisces Folk around willing to soak up spilled Emotions, and the more Trance Reformations there are, the more Emotions there are to be spilled. Trance Reformations are usually introduced by a cataract of suppressed Trauma emerging into Consciousness, which triggers a flood of Present-Moment Emotion in response, and Liberates a tsunami of Fear of an Unknown Future. That’s the best case! More often, our internal Protectors try to block the original cataract, which then Manifests as untoward exterior Events, creating more Trauma. Taking Full Responsibility for mopping all that up is a Herculean task.
A paragraph from Van der Kolk’s The Body Keeps the Score, p.296…
“It is one thing to process memories of trauma, but it is an entirely different thing to confront the inner void – the holes in the soul [or aura] that result from not being wanted, not having been seen, and not having been allowed to speak the truth. If your parents’ faces never lit up when they looked at you, it’s hard to know what it feels like to be loved and cherished. If you come from an incomprehensible world filled with secrecy and fear, it’s almost impossible to find the words to express what you have endured. If you grew up unwanted and ignored, it is a major challenge to develop a visceral sense of agency and self-worth.”
We begin to see why Change is so dangerous, and we haven’t even considered how often it’s purposely hijacked by the internal and external Lizards to their own advantage – the internal Lizards shift the Energy into long-repressed and over-reactive Anger channels, and the external Lizards use the resulting Confusion to stoke their Greed.
So the Planet is awash in a Biblical flood. What to do? The Galactic Center informs us that we just have to Take Full Responsibility to move ourself forward one slog at a time. If there is no one to hear you Express your Feelings, write or paint or draw them out. Take time to Listen to music that does Express or trigger your Feelings, Notice what happens in your Body when you do, and be Loving and Gentle with it and with yourself. Love is All There Is. No matter how horrible a Feeling can be, if you work at it you can find some Empathy for the part of you that Feels it. “You Poor Baby, that’s Horrible!” and Embrace that Poor part of you. Even if you Hate that part of yourself, you may be able to find some Empathy for your Hater. “You Poor Hater, they really treated you Horribly!”
One small step toward Loving some orphaned part of ourself.
Just opening the door a crack. More will follow, but none of it will be as hard as that first small step.
If you are lucky enough to have a Feeling-Expression partner to practice with, you’ll have plenty of Challenges with that too. Mercury (Communication) is Retrograde in early Libra (Introduction to Other), after all.
Mercury Triple-Crosses Vesta, Juno, and Pluto during this Retrogradation. We usually refer to a Triple-Crossing as the Can-Opener, the Exposition, and the Confidence-Builder; look up one of those terms in the CATEGORIES list if you’re a new reader. Vesta (Limiting Beliefs) and Juno (the Edges of Consciousness) are the Star Dancers in this weekend’s Total Eclipse of the Heart. And we know about Pluto now! Mercury thrice Conjoins Juno, Opposes Vesta, and Squares Pluto.
And by the way, the Eclipse chart features a Quintile Yod to Mars. A Quintile Yod says this is what we’re Learning here. Mars symbolizes Action and Assertiveness; it may be Asking you to tone down certain Reactions where you verge on Power-Over, and it may be Asking you to beef up other Reactions where you allow Others to Power-Over you, and probably both.
So what suggestions can we provide that might make Feeling-Expression a little easier? Maybe these…
- When someone succeeds in Expressing a Feeling, and they know that it’s been Heard, they usually don’t need to say a lot more (about that Feeling). You’ll see a shift in their shoulders or their breathing or the tension in their face. If they’re intellectualizing their Feelings, they’ll go on and on about them and you’ll never get a word in edgewise. If you get filibustered and can’t find a way to change it, you may just need a different Feeling-Expression partner.
- Sometimes it works to ask whether or not you’re Hearing their Feelings correctly; “So it sounds like you might be Angry about the way they treated you?” If “Angry” is a hot-button word for them they might Hear your question as an accusation, but even if they do, it has the potential to move the exchange from Venting to actual Communication.
- When is it your turn? Some people are so tangential with their Feelings, or so backed up, that they have no room to Hear anyone else. Don’t martyr yourself to try to rescue them; that’s a lose-lose strategy. When you’re bored listening to them repeat themself, it’s time to change venues.
- If you can introduce a Talking Stick or a timer, that might help, but you’re better off watching for that deep breath or lowering of the shoulders or relaxing of the face muscles as your cue to hand off the Talking Stick, rather than a timer. A timer can easily introduce greater Frustration.
- Be watchful for your own Fears and Protections. If you get uncomfortable hearing someone Fearfully talking about their Fear or Angrily talking about their Anger, that’s a huge clue for you about what you probably need to Open up to. If you’re unable to be Present and Neutral for the Other, it’s probably best to change the plot. Even just saying “Whoa, that scares me!” or “I’m really nervous around Anger; can we detour?” or the like has the potential to create progress. They may be comfortable enough with their process to be able to stop and be Present for you to talk about what’s coming up for you. Or you may need to take a break and work on your own with Lovingly and Gently Embracing your own Feelings for a while.
- Any exchange of Feeling Expression can get lost in the Emotions. It’s a fabulous way to Notice when you or they (or both) get hijacked by the Emotion and are unable to Witness it from a more Present and Neutral part of the Self. That’s invaluable Guidance, but your exchange may or may not be able to recover from a hijacking. Even if you can’t recover the exchange, you can follow the Guidance.
It’s a lot easier to list these things than it is to do them. Remember that Confusion is the First Sign of Growth and that Curiosity is what gives the Cat nine lives. If you start to get Overwhelmed, Tap on it. Use Trial and Success – give it a try, see what worked and honor yourself and your practice partner for it, Gently look to see what might be improved and be Loving and Gentle with your tendency to self-criticize. If you can do such a post-mortem with your exchange-mate, that’d be very valuable.