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The Universal Festival Calendar first appeared in July, 1998 as an e-mail newsletter, and has also been published online since May, 2000. It incorporates data from astronomy and astrology, Moon cycles and the sacred days and festivals of many spiritual traditions, in order to identify monthly and annual power points, when human ascension efforts are well aligned with the celestial dynamics of our galactic stage machinery, and the life cycles of Mother Earth. The UFC aims to assist the spiritual evolution of Earth and her people by providing information useful for planning global meditations, ceremonies and gatherings that support the aim of awakening enough human beings to bring about the lifting of human consciousness into higher frequencies of mercy, compassion, wisdom and love.

We welcome and are grateful for suggestions by readers whose ideas have improved the Calendar, and made it more accurate and comprehensive.



September 2016

The War in Heaven

Hail, and welcome to the Universal Festival Calendar for September, 2016. In the ancient Khemitian (aka “ancient Egyptian”) calendar, we would now be in the middle of the month of Ptah, which spans mid-August to mid-September in our modern reckoning. Ptah was  one of the primordial creator Neters whose thought and word brought the world into being. His blue skull cap shows that he is a sky being whose will can bring ideas down from Heaven and into realization on Earth, and this is the very ancient meaning of the phrase “out of the blue,” which we still use today for a spontaneous, intuitive insight that seems to come to us from the sky, and bring the answer to a problem that the mallet of the intellect has not yet been able to crack with its usual direct, linear force. We invoke his blessing now, and not because  this month brings a greater weight and pressure of the dirt, dread and danger than is routine now.

In this time of ongoing struggle between the shadow forces of domination, manipulation and control that feed on fear, and insatiably want to create more of it, and the light forces that seek to unite and liberate us through love, this month is climactic. It brings,  as we’ll soon see, along with some terrific stresses, some superb windows of creative opportunity that offer us a chance to envision and manifest the best that we can dream and intend.

The Month of Two Black Moons

This is it. We are in it now, at nothing less, for our density at this time, than the War in Heaven now being played out again on the Earth, in the heavens and in galactic space. Hail, and welcome to the Universal Festival Calendar for September, 2016.

And welcome to the climactic showdown month, in our battle for awakening and freedom, and for the survival of conscious, communal life in which compassion is arousable and serenity is a frame of action. We have now arrived at the beginning of the climactic weeks in the entire Aquarian transition of 2012 to 2016. To get our bearings first in time, narrowing from the wide time range of years to the months of white water we shoot through now:

Four Years2012 to 2016: We are now well beyond the most explosive friction in the revolutionary phase of the 90° square between Uranus the Revolutionary and magical Trickster in the proactive, violent fire sign of Aries, and Pluto the Lord of Death and Regeneration, operator of the Cosmic Sanitation Service that bears away what can no longer stand, in the slow, cautious, conservative Saturn-ruled Earth sign of Capricorn. While a 90° “square” is usually interpreted as “stressful” or “difficult,” it is more useful to see this angle as disharmonious tension and as powerful planetary leverage for bringing about changes that are long overdue. This is why, from February 2012 through January 2016, so many new things were set in motion, and so many old rules and structures began to erode, that now the inevitable changes accelerate, and it is easy to tell the doom pimps from the pioneers of intentional community.

We can see the positions of the adversaries now aligned in crisis, crystallizing day by day, even hour by hour. Those who live in fear talk endlessly of loss, doom and collapse, and blast in every direction, at every hour, their toxic propaganda about who should be feared. Those who live in love increasingly disconnect from the entire corporatist power structure, the fake governments, the rigged elections, the capitalist bankster scams, tax robberies, death merchant wars, false flag terror events, fake mainstream media and the entire intricate campaign of the archon controllers to poison 90° of the world’s people with HAARP frequencies, chemtrails, lethal GMO Foods, toxic pharmaceuticals, corrupting dumbdown entertainments and vaccines.

A balancing act is required here between knowing what is going on, yet observing it with equanimity from a position of strength, so we do not risk being so attached to to the turmoil that it can knock us right off our chakra column, forcing us to rebuild our energy envelope of protection, regain the beam of direction on which serendipities come and the compass of community is drawn, and retune ourselves to the frequency of love that attracts and unites.

It is essential for us to know that that the New World Order-TPP depopulation agenda is real, and it is underway. That ever-wider war is constantly being fomented as a source of profit by death merchants who play both sides against the middle position of their own immense profit. That the German government has recently urged her citizens to stockpile food in the event of terror attack or other emergency. That a major financial dislocation is expected soon, as the petrodollar receives its last rites and the Chinese yuan is added to the world basket of standard currencies. That the US election has become an utterly corrupt and not at all clever reality TV  show that cannot mask the terminal rottenness of the system, even when it goes as loud and lurid as it can by starring the  Whore of Babylon from Revelations in a smoking chariot placed atop a wheeled septic tank of fermenting, swelling crimes, secrets and lies that may explode at any moment and blow her past the Moon, and a self-inflating balloon in the shape of Simon Magus, the fake wizard from the Acts of the Apostles, claiming to fly high on his own power until the hidden stage wires that hold him up suddenly give way, and he falls into the Dumpster of False Democracy, along with all the other debris of what was once the world’s most admired engine of wealth and beacon of freedom, before it became a jackpot for oligarchs and a debt and deception farm for everyone else. This brings us to the celestial dynamic we are in now:

Eleven MonthsNovember, 2015 to October, 2016: And it is essential to know why propaganda and lies are constantly, relentlessly directed against those who dare to expose and oppose Operation Death, especially when they oppose the agenda of the banking cartel and death merchants. The most hated and attacked target is clearly Vladimir Putin, whose astrocartography — from my upcoming book Maps of Power — was featured on this page a month ago, in “A Lull in the Storm.” The disgraceful smear attempt by George Soros and the CIA in their Panama Papers scam did not dent him, any more than the current lies about Russian leaking of anyone’s emails is likely to be believed at a time when more people are awakening to the scope and nature of the problem. This is why the newly launched Russia TV, specifically designed as an alternative to WBOM (Western Bankster Oligarch Media) is gaining an immense new audience of people who are awake enough to know Putin is no saint, but he’s determined either to free his country and the world from the banking cartel, or die trying. And he’s a Libra who seeks partnership and compromise, historically positioned at a time when everyone else wants to fight. This is what Putin had to say in “We Offset Western Media,”  his speech two days ago (Aug. 30) to the management team and reporters of Russia TV:

“Your task is not even to serve the interests of the government, but to simply provide an objective point of view, so that the average citizen, viewer, listener, can discern an overall, multidimensional understanding, a three or four dimensional personal understanding. In regard to whether the government is acting correctly: Does this serve the society at large and the people in it? Or is this being done in the interests of the elites, and the quasi-elites? Is this being done in the interests of monopoly groups and their profits?”

Dangerously nutty stuff, all right. It’s no wonder people in pinstripes in Paris, the City of London and Wall Street are aligning against him, and their employees in European and US governments are so dutifully on the attack. Why does Putin now regard media as the critical battleground in this year’s episode of the War in Heaven? Because of the planetary dynamic we’re in now, as we come to the climactic time of the 11 months of Saturn against Neptune that we’ve traversed from November, 2015 until now.

If you’ve read other recent UFC pages, then you know what this planet transit is about, as Saturn and Pluto afflict each other in a long, exhausting grind of disharmonious tension that does much to explain the unfolding of 2016. The severe difficulties and bizarre mistakes of institutions of authority, the implacable stuckness of people determined to remain within habitual sumps of ignorance and ruts of addiction, the almost mythical ingenuity of people struggling to keep their crimes hidden, the incessant doom and fear propaganda of elites fighting for control as they feel it inexorably slipping away — all must happen when Saturn won’t budge, and Neptune won’t tell the truth.

Another essential condition of the time — in its subtle way the most fearsome challenge of all — is the growing recognition by more and more of us that the time when we become communal co-leaders, and we create a new Aquarian direct democracy to replace the fake representative democracy that is now crumbling away, is fast approaching, whether we are ready for it or not, and it may already be here. This brings us to the moment of crisis and opportunity we are in now:

Two MonthsSeptember and October, 2016: If you are an observer of trends and conditions on the planet, then you know that a crucial adjustment in the financial system is due at the beginning of October, when the Chinese yuan is added to the world’s “basket” of standard exchange currencies, and this is why so many doom pimps are talking about everything from the collapse of the US dollar to World War III, as though both of these things are not already happening. Oct. 2 is the ending of a Shemitah cycle, about which you can find more in “Step Right Up,” about the Shemitah cycle ending in September 2015.

Shemitah literally means Washing Away, and can be interpreted as the proactive, generousforgiving of debt in a jubilee year, or as the unanticipated loss of assets in a financial catastrophe, or as the inundation and dissolving of outworn structures of control and of negative, limiting beliefs. This is inevitable now because we are in the culmination of a a 49-year Super Shemitah cycle, in which the tide of change becomes a tsunami that crests on Oct. 2. Do human beings accept such changes gracefully? Of course not. They’d rather fight, even if they’re ultimately fighting in the service of those who’ve enslaved them and aim to kill them. That’s why this image of the Temple of Propaganda by photographer Sheldan Collins captures  so brilliantly the condition we are in now, as the viewer wonders whether the clueless, naked-as-ignorance worshipers are paying homage to the gun, or the skull of the death culture above it, or the whole illusion of civilization and order, represented by the Greek structure that has on its columns,, tellingly enough, snakes that can symbolize the reptilian archon order and its imperative of control, or the serpent as symbol of regeneration that is well within our power to achieve.

The crucial detail in this work of art, so fitting for the time of fraud, lying and deception we are in now, as Neptune’s affliction climaxes this month, is the pair of microphones pointed upward at the gun, the skull and the eagle. We know all too well why this is. In 2016 the essential question and quandary for us is not what is actually happening, but what is being said about it, what narrative is being spun for the exaltation of the few and the abasement and annihilation of the many. The showdown battle between primeval, earthbound reptiles and skyborne beings is nothing new in our mythic history, as we’re about to see, after we’ve looked briefly at why this month is so extremely important to us.

This MonthSeptember 1, 11, 22 and 30, 2016: The Saturn-Neptune square comes to exactitude again on Sept. 11, fittingly enough, even likelier this time, than it has been for the last 15 years, as an interval of patriotic and religious fakery and foolery by those who continue to present the murderous inside job of the 9/11 scam as a an attack by foreign terrorists who were no more piloting those planes than a child who plays with a rubber steering wheel mounted on the  dashboard of the family car is actually doing the driving.

We are in a month of a double Black Moon: in Virgo on Aug. 31 – Sept. 1, and in Libra on Sept. 30 – Oct. 1. The reason for the two-day date range on both these Black Moons is that they both come right in the seam, of transition from one month to the next. A month of two Black Moons is not in itself so rare or significant. It must happen every 2 1/2 years or so, just as a Blue Moon does, with two Full Moons in the same calendar month. What is significant here, is that both Black Moons, and the Aries Full Moon coming between them on Sept. 16, are very powerful, though in markedly different ways, with the Black Moon at the end of this month offering high possibilities for harmonious, creative cohesion (see Sept. 30 in the Daily Listings below).

The Black Moon of Aug. 31 – Sept. 1 is especially important because it has an annular eclipse, so called because the eclipse is not total, but the bright rim of the Sun is visible like a ring (Latinannulum). Eclipses have long been dreaded by those who consider solar intellect primary, and have been pumped for fear and panic by political and religious authorities, because the light of the Sun is momentarily blocked. But seen from another angle, for example by Joseph Campbell, who considered the brain a “secondary organ” and trusted above all our faculties of imagination and intuition, a Black Moon is a moment when our psychic receptivity is greatest, our empathy is strongest, and we have an uncommon ability to conceive clear, compelling intentions, both personal and communal, and to drive them with strong currents of feeling. This is why so many of us will be doing intentional ceremony at both Black Moons, at the Full Moon and at the Equinox on Sept. 22, which will come 9 hours after Mercury comes out of retrograde and “goes direct.” How do we fight or play these intervals of stress and opportunity? It depends on how we see the War in Heaven, and how we choose our battles.

The War in Heaven Here and Now

The myth of the War in Heaven, we all know, is nothing new, even if the only one we’ve actually heard of and think we understand is the Judaeo-Christian battle between Yahweh and Lucifer, who was called the Son of the Morning because he was the brightest of angels until he rebelled against having to serve as a divine messenger for the benefit of human beings. In the climactic battle against St. Michael (see Sept. 29 in the Daily Listings below), Lucifer was dealt the blow that knocked him out of heaven and into the Earth, where Dante imagined him at the bottom of the pit of Hell. The Greeks had their legend of the Gigantomachia, the War against the Giants, who are easy to identify here because they’re composite human and reptilian beings whose legs terminate in serpents, and who represent the earthbound lower self that must be mastered, for the sake of intelligent, divine order, by sky-mobile beings like owl-eyed Athena, at left, the teacher and warrior of the law.

The best-known of the wars in heaven in the Vedic tradition is the climactic battle in The Mahabharata between the forces of the Pandavas and the Kauravas. It is of special interest to us partly because it features flying fire vehicles and weapons like the ones in the banner image to this page, courtesy of Partly because this great poem contains the line “No worthy man speaks in praise of himself,” which says all that needs to be said about preening figures like the Simon Magus actor in this year’s American election. Partly because of how the warrior hero Arjuna wins. He has no desire to kick some Kaurava butt, to paraphrase Will Smith’s line from the contemptible war pimp movie Independence Day. No, Arjuna’s chariot driver is none other than Krishna himself.  His advice in the epic’s most famous segment, theBhagavad Gita, is that the hero can prevail if he gives up all belief in his own superiority, and all attachment to the outcome of the fight.

Imagine that. And what is more incredible, for people who are determined to have and hate enemies, is what comes many years after the battle, when all the warriors who have not died on the field have finally passed away from old age, and they meet in heaven, as shown here:

The Pandavas and Kauravas who once fought each other so bitterly have evolved beyond all judgment and blame, separation and hate into acceptance, forgiveness and love. Not only are we fully capable of doing the same thing here and now, but we rather have to, and not just because we had best preserves ourselves against the depopulation agenda of archon controllers and technocrats who aim to wipe out 90% of us, and turn the most docile ones among the rest into a class of managers, cooks, waiters, drivers, gardeners and hookers who are basically capable of doing the job, but not bright and ambitious enough to want to seduce the boss’s wife and take over his life. In other words, something like the Nazi agenda in Russia, only much bigger and now entirely doable, is here, and it is in our interest to know how to respond to it.

But beyond the basic question of self-preservation, the main point of our arriving at an equanimitous detachment and generous, unifying serenity is that this is what we have come here to do. It’s our role, as the late hero comedian Bill Hicks once put it. Machiavelli wrote inThe Prince that “There is nothing more difficult to execute than to introduce a new order of things; for he who introduces it has all those who profit from the old system as his enemies.” Our scenario is doubly demanding because we will have to disempower and discard the existing Piscean hierarchies with the arrangements of synarchy — that is, shared or equal power — that will give us at last direct democracy among people who are communally engaged, rather than the fake democracy that is dying now because the people who are most attracted to it, and benefit the most from it, are the vain, the ambitious, the crooked, the greedy and the lazy who want to win a position of power and stay in it for life, and extract as much value from it as they can.

The scenario in front of us, the Gift Economy that does not remove value from the system for anyone’s profit or private benefit, but keeps it flowing and growing in circulation, is infinitely more challenging than the passive position that we’ve historically occupied, and that is about to vanish from under us. Our task is to accept more effort and responsibility, and to exercise it as well as we can for shorter intervals of time in a scenario that is communal and cooperative, rather than a negating political gut fight among those who delight in hurting each other, and are indifferent to everything else.

Will it be challenging? You bet. We’ve never done it. We have no idea how. But we’d better learn, in the interest of our basic  survival, and to fulfill our shared mission. We have time. We have ten centuries and more, until the Age of Aquarius has run half its course, and its current of freedom reverses. Best get in the game at the lunations, at the Equinox and the Solstice, and in other ways of getting done what we came here to do. We don’t need leader any more. We only need people who are willing to do an honest job, especially if they’re ready to shut up and sing.

The world is full of us, and we will sound wonderful when we join our voices at Wine Moon, Harvest Moon and all our other rites of meeting and celebration.

Come in. Tune up. Keep Holding That Frequency.


Daily Listings

September 2016

Aug. 31, Wednesday, 11:04 pm HT; Sept. 1, Thursday, 9:04 am UT:

This Daily Listings entry was the last item in the August UFC, and is repeated here because the Black Moon is right in the seam, at the transition from August to September.

The Black Moon conjunct the Sun in Virgo normally brings harmonious and fruitful blendings of Earth energies. The night of the ensuing New Moon on Sept. 2 can be ideal for teaching the physical and spiritual Education of the Virgin through the Map of Love in the late summer sky. Conditions remain fractious as this Black Moon because the Moon and Sun in Virgo have now joined the continuing T-Cross among Saturn in Sagittarius, Neptune in Pisces and the Moon’s Nodes on the Virgo-Pisces axis; and Mars remains in a tense, assertive conjunction with Saturn. It will be best to use this Mars energy at its best to form courageous new intentions and launch them, ideally in shared intention ceremonies, with others who are determined to aid the transformation. I have posted a video about Black Moon 9116 Riyadh on YouTube.

In the ancient Celtic and Druidic calendars, and also in the modern Wiccan calendar, the New Moon in the month of Virgo is called the Singing Moon.

In the Beth-Luis-Nion Celtic tree calendar used by devotees of the faerie path, the ninth New Moon following the Winter Solstice begins Coll, or hazel month. This month favors the activities of resourceful ones: shapeshifters and adepts who journey by means of astral projection. It has long been customary at this time to make new wands of hazel, especially for protection from storms.

Sept. 1, Thursday:

Feast of Ausar (aka Osiris) in the Khemitian Calendar (Paopi, month of Ptah, Day 16).

Celtic tree month of Muin begins. The month is ruled by Lugh, deity of light, prophecy and spiritual enlightenment, and is especially favorable for adepts who aspire to increased prophetic powers, and to the mastery of bardic poetry. The sacred tree of Muin is the Vine, and this month often aligns with Wine Moon, and also celebrates the bounty of the harvest.

September 2, Friday eve:

The Jewish month of Elul begins. As this month is devoted to peace, reflection and self-renewal, it is the prelude to the High Holy Days that follow after the end of Elul.

Sept. 5 – 15 (11 days):

Ganesha Chaturthi, India’s most joyous homage to the lord of learning.

This great annual festival honors one of the most beloved figures in the Hindu pantheon: Ganesha, elephant- headed god of letters and wisdom, son of Shiva and Parvati, mentor of gods and humans, including the famous warrior Arjuna in The Mahabharata. Over the 11 days of the festival, the devoted ones invoke and acknowledge Ganesha’s help as a bringer of insight, provider of inspiration, and dissolver of problems and obstacles. The music and poetry culminate in ritual bathing of the god’s image, and a feast of lights which honors Ganesha as an assisting force for studies in illumination and creative work.

Sept  6, Wednesday:

In the Mayan calendar systems, this day begins the Uinal of Light, the ninth of the 20-day Uinals in the current cycle of the Tzolkin, or 260-day calendar (5 Imix, Tzolkin 161). The symbolic bird for this uinal is the Turkey, the energy principles those of Breakthrough and Budding.

Sept  8, Thursday:

Among the Yoruba and Santeria peoples of Africa, this day is sacred to O shun, the Orisha (divine principle) of love, compassion and healthy birth.

In many Christian calendars, nativity of the Virgin Mary. This holiday superseded an earlier weather marker day of which it was said that this day’s weather heralded the weather of the next four weeks.

Sept  9, Friday

The most important planet ingress of the year comes today as Jupiter enters Libra, the sign he will transit from now to October 10, 2017. Jupiter’s expansiveness, optimism, abundance, enthusiasm — and his love of indulgence, extravagance and excess — now affect the sign and house of marriage, love relationship and partnership in general. In the months ahead he will form combinations of high import with other planets, notably a 90° square with Pluto in Capricorn that will go exact in late November on the day after the American Thanksgiving holiday, thereby provoking political discussions that will not be conducive to good digestion. It will be abundantly clear that no matter how the US election turns out, if there is one, the outcome will be anything but unifying and decisive. How best to play it? By remembering that Jupiter rules justice and good government as well as bad, and the “higher communications” of religion, philosophy and law, so that it will be possible for high-minded people to agree on harmonious principles.

Sept. 10, Saturday:

Throughout ancient Europe, the day of the Horned One, of the Britannic god Cernunnos. Two weeks before the Autumn Equinox, shamanic dancers wear reindeer horns to honor and pray for an abundance of deer and other wild horned beasts whose meat, hides, horn and bones are vital to the tribe’s survival during the coming winter.

Sept. 11, Sunday:

This is New Year’s Day in Ethiopia, and is also observed among Rastafarians, who honor Ethiopia as their spiritual homeland, to which they will eventually return. The day is commemorated with celebrations of Ethiopian history, Bible readings and prayer.

On this day the ongoing 90° “square” between Saturn in Sagittarius and Neptune in Pisces will be exact to the minute. This grand planetary dynamic, which has ruled the months from Dec. 2015 until now, and will remain in force until mid-October, and has anchored a number of high-stress Cross alignments, means that tension and dispute may run very high from now to the Sept. 16 Full Moon.

Sept. 11 eve to Sept. 15 eve (four days):

In the Islamic calendar, this day begins the great annual festival of Eid al-Adha, celebrated from the 10th day of the month of Dhu al-Hijjah.

The solemn ceremonies culminate four days later at the Full Moon in what may be the most important of all Islamic holy days: Kurbani Bayrami, the Night of Power, honoring the willingness of Abraham to sacrifice his only son Isaac without reservation or question in one of history’s most famous acts of submission, the literal meaning of “Islam.” This act established Abraham among the spiritual heroes most revered by devout Muslims.

Sept. 12 – 16  (5 days):

In the Zoroastrian calendar, days of the annual Earth Festival honoring Spenta Armaiti, who created Earth in harmony with Ahura Mazda, the supreme deity who manifests in seven male and seven female emanations (yet another instance of the number 14, equal to half the days in a lunar cycle). As in all Zoroastrian festivals, the Divine Fire is honored in all its aspects, from the illumination of sacred wisdom to the cleansing and purifying fire that destroys illusion and the residues of unkind action.

 September 13 eve – 14 eve:

Just prior to the Eleusinian Mysteries (see September 14 – 20), ancient Athens holds every five years the festival of Demokratia, celebrating the blessings of democratic government, constitutional law and freedom of speech. During the rites, images of Zeus Agoraios and Athene Agoraias (“Zeus and Athene of the low place”) are paraded and decorated in the agora, the lower city area below the Acropolis, or “high city”. For the Athenians, and other Greeks, this emphasis on broad-based democratic worship of gods who treated the great and the humble with equal kindness and severity was profoundly different from the hierarchic religious practices of Asia and Africa, where gods were said to speak only to kings and high priests. The Demokratia also honors Themis (“Order”), mother (by Hermes) of King Evander, to whom she taught prophecy and letters.

Sept. 13 – 14 (2 days):

The ancient Khemitians (aka Egyptians) celebrate the annual Festivals of Lights:

Sept. 13:   Festival of lighting the fires of Neith, the primordial mother, oldest of the Egyptian Neterw. Neter, plural neterw(pronounced neteroo), the indigenous word from the Khemitian suflanguage, is often mistranslated as “god” by Egyptologists, but is understood by the ancient Nile people and keepers of their lore as an elemental force of Nature in which the One manifests. This is why the words Neter and Nature are cognate. (Paopi, month of Ptah, day 27).

Sept. 14: Feast of Lights, during which neter images and tombs were brilliantly illuminated all through the night.

Sept. 14, Wednesday:

In the Roman Catholic calendar, this is Holy Cross Day, observed in commemoration of the day in the year 335 when the Church of the Holy Sepulchre was consecrated in Jerusalem on the site where St. Helena, mother of the emperor Constantine, was said to have found the true cross, at the exact spot on the hill of Golgotha where Jesus was crucified, and also to have found the tomb where he was buried.

September 14 – 20 (seven days):

The grand ceremonies of the Eleusinian Mysteries are performed in ancient Athens, at intervals of five years. This most solemn and secret initiation rite in the Greek tradition is celebrated in the middle of Boedromion, the sixth month in the old lunar calendar that predates the Olympian solar calendar. As the Greek lunar calendar reckons from March as the beginning of the year, the Eleusinian Mysteries are always held while the Sun is in Virgo, symbolized by grain, grapes and other emblems of Earth’s eternal abundance. The plan of the rites (with day numbers in the month of Boedromion):

Day 13: Young men carry the Hiera, the sacred ritual treasures, in procession from Eleusis to Athens

Day 14: Priests and priestesses receive the Hiera outside the city, and carry them to the temple

Day 15:  (Full Moon): secret Hiera rite at the temple

Day 16: Initiates take purificatory sea-bath

Day 17: Initiates’ preparation and meditation rites

Day 18: The rite of initiation

Day 19: New initiates carry the Hiera back to Eleusis

Sept 16, Friday: 9:05 am HT; 7:05 pm UT:

Full Moon in Pisces, opposite Sun in Virgo. Earth and water are in complementary balance. Nourishment. The time after the Dog Days is for the flourishing of the Crops, ceremonies to renew the body of Mother Earth, and the mental and emotional Education of the Virgin. This Full Moon continues and amplifies the powerful astral dynamics of this year, as the ongoing T-cross among Saturn in Sagittarius, Neptune in Pisces and the Moon’s Nodes along the Virgo-Pisces axis by Mercury in Virgo, conjunct the Dragon’s Head. At the same time, Mars in Sagittarius, moving beyond his conjunction with Saturn at the Black Moon of August 31 and Sept. 1, now forms the middle leg of a Second T-cross with the Pisces Moon and the Virgo Sun. This is a time of very high intensity, when keepers of frequency had best replenish their energy. We will need it.

In the ancient Celtic and Druidic calendars, and also in the modern Wiccan calendar, this Full Moon in mid-September may be observed in some areas as Harvest Moon and Singing Moon,though the next Full Moon, in Libra month, is the traditional time for gathering the harvest before the onset of autumn cold in Scorpio month.

In the Chinese calendar, at this Full Moon of the 8th month, the Festival of the Ancestors, also called the Milky Way Festival and the Moon Festival, begins the month-long Festival of the Hungry Ghosts. It reaffirms the sacred links between Heaven and Earth, and is one of the year’s most auspicious family reunion holidays. For the ensuing month food offerings are left for the ghosts, and prayer ceremonies are held for protection against dark forces. The people bake and offer Moon Cakes in homage to the Moon’s water-bringing power and her beauty. The Chinese and other east Asian peoples consider this Full Moon the most beautiful of the year. Shown here: the author in the kyogen play Tsukimi Zato (The Moon-Viewing Blind Man) in Kyoto, Japan, September 1986.

Sept. 17, Saturday:

This is the birthday of one of the world’s authentic geniuses: the abbess, poet, playwright, painter and composer Hildegard von Bingen (1098? – 1179), one of the very few great triple-threat artists in history.

Hildegard excelled in the media of literature, music and vidual art, producing brilliant mystical paintings, and was also the only abbess, with the possible exception of St. Agnes of Bohemia,  ever to fight successfully all efforts by the medieval Roman church to control her order and limit her influence, and she thereby kept her community free of political and commercial pressures.

If the artistry of women were valued on Earth, Hildegard would be mentioned in the company of such spiritual masters as Dante, Rumi and Vyasa.

Sept. 17 – 21 (5 days):

In the Khemitian Calendar, the Main Festival of Het-Hor, aka “Hathor,” begins Hethara, the month named in her honor. During this month the Nile crests after its annual inundation, and begins to recede until it is dry enough for sowing in November. Het-Hor, aka Hathor, the netert who embodies the sacred feminine in her maternal, nurturing aspect, is naturally connected with the life-renewing cycle of the river, and with the climactic last days of the Virgo season.

Sept 19, Monday:

For Roman Catholics, Sept. 19 is the feast of St. Januarius, Bishop of Beneventum and a celebrated martyr who went the hard way during the persecutions of Diocletian. Januarius was one of those who performed a miracle in the circus of Campania when the ravenous lions and tigers who should normally have devoured the Christians chose instead to lie down around them. Januarius and his fellow saints were then beheaded, only to steal the show in the end in one of history’s most remarkable ongoing miracles. Two vials of Januarius’ blood, preserved in their congealed state in the cathedral of Naples, sometimes liquefy when they are brought near the saint’s head in his annual festival. This last happened in 2000. St. Januarius is better known as San Gennaro, patron of the great Italian autumn festival, a raucous celebration of sausage and merriment.

One of the year’s great festivals of Djehuti, aka Thoth, in the Khemitian Calendar (Month of Hethara, day 3). A day-long fast is observed, broken at night with ritual foods.

Sept. 21, Wednesday::

In the Roman Catholic calendar, feast of St. Matthew, perhaps the most controversial of the Christian evangelists, as his gospel is the source of Christian beliefs about the tribulations of the “end times” in which God is expected to inflict natural disasters, plagues and other vindictiveness on the unrighteous, and their home on Earth.

Sept. 22, Thursday, 4:21m HT;  2:21 pm UT:

Autumn Equinox, one of the four “cardinal festivals” of the Earth year, so called because on this day the year was thought to turn like a door on a hinge (Latin cardo) as the Sun now reaches the 180° point on the zodiac wheel at 0° Libra, exactly opposite the 0° Aries point of the Spring Equinox. Autumn now begins as Sun enters Libra (the Scales), symbolizing the balance of light and darkness at the moment when the Solar energy of the year begins to wane, and Earth energy waxes toward harvest and abundance.

Like the Cancer month of early summer, the Libra season is a time when balanced, sideways movement is favored. This is more a season of weighing advantages and exploring options, and especially for bringing in and securing the harvest, than it is for launching new enterprises. Among the many festivals held throughout the planet, starting from this day:

The Wiccan feast of Mabon, the year’s second harvest, celebrated in the weighing of the grain and fruit, and festivals of plenty, is held now in the Northern hemisphere.

Ancient Greek festival of Demeter, symbolized by the cornucopia, and Roman festival of Ops, the day of thanksgiving to Mother Earth for the opulence of the harvest and nature’s abundance. Other autumn festivals celebrated now:

Taoist festival honoring the Shen, or divine principles, of Wind, West, and Autumn. Rituals held at this time celebrate the virtue of living in harmony with the rhythms of Earth and Sky.

Coyna Rayni, the Incan festival of rain, devoted to the purgation by water of illness and evil.

In some Native American Calendars, the month of the Raven begins on this day.

In the Japanese Buddhist Calendar, this day is Aki no Higan, when believers meditate on hakanai, the impermanence of all things in the realm of material illusion.

In the ancient Mediterranean and Middle East, Mihrigan, the festival of the solar god Mithras, is held today. This holy day survives today as Mihr, the month of the Autumn Equinox in the Iranian calendar.

Below the equator, this is the Spring Equinox that heralds the end of the dry season and the coming of the rain. Pagans in the southern hemisphere celebrate the spring feast of Ostara.

Finally, as if all of this were not enough, Mercury “goes direct” on this day. Delays, blockages, confusion, mechanical malfunctions, misunderstandings and general human bozosis in the Mercury-ruled areas of transportation, communications, commerce and thievery begin to lift now, and will dissolve altogether when Mercury clears his retrograde shadow on Oct. 7, when Mercury arrives again at the zodiac point where his retrograde motion began on Aug. 30.

Sept. 23, Friday:

Venus enter Scorpio. She is said to be  “in detriment” here, her powers frayed, even weakened to exhaustion in the perilous territory of Scorpio, her sexual energy more desperate and obsessivethan playful and sensuous. Love has a certain relentless quality, and sex is more force than fun  until Oct. 18. This placement involves sexual exhaustion and depletion, even sexual flameouts to the tune of crash, burn and die for the cluelessly adventurous and flamboyantly erotic. The point is elegantly displayed on the zodiac wheel, where the white sexuality of the Virgin and the black sexuality o