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ABOUT THE UNIVERSAL FESTIVAL CALENDAR
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 stagemachinery, 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.
THE UNIVERSAL FESTIVAL CALENDAR
Hail, and welcome to the Universal Festival Calendar for July, 2015. This is it, at the top of summer 2015, the beginning of the opinion dump, cosmic rockslide, toxic purge and icicle drop that has now become inevitable, after so many years of our environmental mismanagement, waste and pollution; economic banditry and buccaneering, political theatrics, games and corruption; and the emotional and social rigidity that has made all too many human beings determined never to listen, or compromise, or acknowledge the basic decency and honor of those who disagree with them. The bills are due. This UFC comes out on July 4, the US Independence Day, as the coming phase in our conscious evolution will be a time when we begin to declare new independences, both personally and collectively, from needs and habits that can limit our freedom more oppressively than any archon ever will.
Fire Sale on Structure and Control!
We are still in the astral dynamic of the Uranus-Pluto squares -- that is, the 90° angles of disharmonious tension -- that have been the ruling planetary aspect of mundane events from June of 2012 until now. For the last three years, revolutionary Uranus in fiery Aries has been in an implacable clash with Pluto, lord of death and regeneration, who sweeps away what can no longer stand. Round 7 of this cosmic drama is now behind us, as the last exact square between these two hostile heavyweights formed in March, when, predictably enough, there were rumors of war by enough doom pimps to form their own army. Now the two planets are nearly 6° away from an exact square. They will come into what could be called Round 8 of their conflict, when they'll be within 1° of an exact square again, in January 2016, and then the tension will gradually abate as Uranus, the faster-moving of the two planets, heads through the late degrees of Aries and on into Taurus three years from now.
What does this mean for us in practical terms? Well, for one thing, it should bring a lessening of friction and some chance of repairing and saving the existing hierarchic orders, agendas of secrecy, debt-based economies and scarcity-minded beliefs. But this is clearly not happening now. Why? Because within the overarching frame of the Uranus-Pluto show, other forces are at work. The most notable one is that we are now within the shadow of the immensely powerful total solar eclipse that formed on April 3 - 4, and introduced an avalanche of seemingly unlikely -- really inevitable -- events, including the weirdest, toughest, most exasperating interval of Mercury retrograde (May 19 - June 10) that most of us, even those like me who are now 70, can remember.
A total solar eclipse like the one we produced in March, as we are in fact the co-creators of the whole scenario, is said to cast a shadow that will last until the next solar eclipse, coming on Sept. 27 - 28. This time the shadow interval is especially momentous, as the late September eclipse will be total lunar eclipse, or Blood Moon -- so called because of the Moon's red color -- tht will follow three consecutive total solar eclipses, including those which formed in April and October 2014. Annular and partial eclipses are far more common, and while two consecutive total solar eclipses are not that unusual -- it happened in June and December of 2011 -- three in a row is rare. They signal, inevitably, a time when long-suppressed changes can no longer be stopped, and deadly secrets burst into the open, such as the "Journalistic Holy Grail" released by Wikileaks at the Full Moon on July 1:" the secret Core Text for the largest 'trade deal' in history, the TiSA (Trade In Services Agreement), whose 52 nations together comprise two-thirds of global GDP."
It must also happen now that those who had been silent speak their truth, and human will stifled to agony must surge into passionate, spontaneous and potentially violent mass action. The prospectus is not all turbulent, though, as this must also be a time when imagination, dreams and empathy can envision wonderful new solutions, if those who are in mob mind can only stop shouting for long enough to hear them.
The Pyramid Crumbles
The cascading momentum of change has thus yielded in recent weeks a set of outcomes that would have seemed unlikely, if not impossible, until they actually came. The US Supreme Court decides that same-sex couples have the right to marry no matter where they live, and that no state has the power to deny them. The court also upholds the availability of the tax subsidies that will enable implementation of the Affordable Care Act. The governor of South Carolina declares that the Confederate flag will no longer fly over the capitol of the state that seceded first from the Union and fired the first shots of the US Civil War, otherwise known to many South Carolinians as "the War of Northern Aggression."
Massive demonstrations in Guatemala demand an end to the plundering of the country's resources by extractive industries, and bring an end to pollution, exploitation and control by transnational corporations and the corrupt political and business establishment. Greater numbers of Europeans demonstrate against "Immiseration Capitalism," i. e., the premise that a capitalist system has the right to impose austerity on its people to insure its survival. A Hawaii judge rules that a lawsuit against Hawaii farmers by Corporation That Must Not Be Named is without merit, thereby striking another severe blow against Voldemort, Inc. and precipitating assertive and successful new actions, throughout the USA and other countries, to free us from the outrageous demands of biotech firms who seek to control the processes of life itself. The people of Mauna Kea on the Big Island of Hawaii protest tenaciously the construction of a giant telescope, one of those Hawaii projects whose environmental impact is examined too little, and too secretly. (Thanks to Sandie Sugai for ongoing updates on this, and to Ka'imi Nicholson for sending the new planetary pledge of allegiance shown here). It could and should, in the common interest of all Earth's people, now supersede all pledges of allegiance to any individual countries. It is time to start moving beyond the divisiveness of nations and theistic religions, and affirm spiritual Earth values that are now essential for us all as planetary citizens, and stewards of the riches of the world.
The Pope of Rome issues a message unprecedented in the history of the Church, in which, in Robert Reich's words, he "finds morally deficient an economic system that degrades the environment and worsens inequality; links environmental decline to poverty; attributes it to the growing concentration of greenhouse gases brought on human activity; and rejects the idea that economic growth alone can solve the problem."
And, in the latest evidence of how moribund the dying capitalist shell game really is, Greece defaults on its loans from the European Union, refusing to accept austerity measures demanded by the "Troika," so that Greece has shut down its banks and imposed capital controls. Predictions are rife that Spain, Italy, France, Germany and the United States will follow suit, though not all necessarily within the time frame of the next three months. Benjamin Fulford and others have compared the crisis that has just begun to the fall of the Soviet Union, emphasizing that what occurred there "was not caused by failed ideology but by actual financial bankruptcy. That is why the United States and the European Union, which is modelled almost exactly on the Soviet Union, are doomed to experience regime change. They are bankrupt."
How Much Do We Really Need?
It's Show Time. How do we respond to these astounding conditions? Within our own value systems, of course. Those who are hooked on the fake paradigm of scarcity, and the false idea that this amazingly abundant planet cannot sustain us, and whose compass of compassion and concern extends only to their families and a few friends, are busy pulling their money out of banks, and buying bullets, toilet paper, canned food and gasoline. Those who see all beings as linked in a grand holistic design of awakening in a galactic unity of consciousness are busy creating strategies for sustainable communities like the one where I live in Pisac, Peru, in the incomparable abundance of the Sacred Valley of the Urubamba river.
I don't worry about food at all, and not just because I live in the place where potatoes, tomatoes, maize, quinoa, kiwicha and maca all were born. I've just come back from a journey of almost 11 months through the USA, Cambodia, Thailand, Japan, Hawaii, Egypt, Turkey and the Netherlands, where I did Astrocartography lectures and so many readings that for weeks at a time my life was stressed and sedentary. I tend to gain weight on the road, even with my best efforts to eat healthy. The math is easy, and stark. If I gain only a half a pound a week over 47 weeks -- really, not in the same league at all as the 23 pounds Elizabeth Gilbert gained in one month in Rome -- even so I'm going to be Tummy the Tubster before I get home, and I could go for a month or more without eating. So it was no wonder that the Rumi poem "Fasting," translation by Coleman Barks, came into view as I was on the plane from New York to Lima. A few lines:
When you are full of food and drink,
Satan sits where your spirit should,
an ugly metal statue in place of the Kaaba.
When you fast, good habits gather like friends
who want to help. Fasting is Solomon's Ring.
Do not give it to some illusion and lose your power . . . (tr. Coleman Barks, The Big Red Book)
Satan here has nothing to do with dogmas about sin, E-word, Hell, or the Devil's gonna get you. Satan is cognate with Saturn because they both represent the solid, earthy, limiting dimension of life on the material plane. And as we saw in April in "The Fish on Our Back," Satan is really an image of the lower self, and the way it can pull us down into slavery to our senses. Rumi's choice of an unusually ascetic life was much influenced by Burhan Mahaqqiq, a hermit who had studied with Rumi's father Bahauddin, and decided when Bahauddin died that he would devote himself to training his teacher's son. For the next nine years Burhan led Rumi on many fasts, including, more than once the spectacular feat of three consecutive chillas, or forty-day fasts. By the time Rumi was 37, and met his mentor and mirror Shams i-Tabriz, he was more than ready. Here is some of his poem "Muhammad and the Huge Eater," translator unknown:
Let body-needs dwindle and soul-decisions increase.
Diminish what you give your physical self.
Your spiritual eye will begin to open.
When the body empties and stays empty,
God fills it with musk and mother-of pearl.
That way a man gives his dung and gets purity.
. . .
The foundation and the walls of the spiritual life
are made of self denials and disciplines.
Stay with Friends who support you in these.
Talk with them about sacred texts,
and how you're doing, and how they're doing,
and keep your practices together."
So it was perfect that soon after I got back, I was one of the eight people who were privileged to join the 7 Day Sacred Juice Cleanse led by Denise Cooper and Cesar Eret (second and third from right). For six days we subsisted on fresh vegetable and fruit juices, broth soups and herbal teas, with psyllium, Bentonite and chia seeds to facilitate digestion and assist the detox process. These came within a regimen of yoga, meditation, saunas, ayahuasca ceremonies and optional massage, energy medicine, kambo (the strong purgative frog medicine) and essential oil therapy. By the time all the others broke the fast yesterday, all of us were lighter, brighter, and much more energetic. One key to our success was the deep and true bonding, communication and encouragement by this group of extraordinarily beautiful and heartstrong people, whom I shall certainly see again. Sharing food with others is a no-brainer, but sharing a fast with others is not. It should be.
I will continue the fast, as I write my next book and catalyze an Imbolc ceremony on Aug. 1 -- the Southern hemisphere counterpart of European Lughnasad -- until I get to my best weight for the first time since I was in my thirties. It's time. We need to eat less and choose more nutrition-rich foods as we get older if we intend to play the show for a long run. It is said that the prophet Muhammad, Peace be Upon Him, would customarily eat at one meal the amount of food that you could hold in one hand. The indigenous Tainos people of what is now Puerto Rico are reported to have said in amazement that the conquistadores ate more in one sitting than the Tainos warriors ate in a week. We may soon be at the point of deciding how much food we really need, for the sake of our own health and the viability of our communities and our planet.
This Could Be a Good Time!
Our closing piece for this prelude, source unknown, courtesy of Richard Diehl, comes from an unnamed Hopi elder who had this to say about what we are going through now, and in the time ahead:
"You have been telling the people that this is the Eleventh Hour, now you must go back and tell the people that this is the Hour. And there are things to be considered . . .
"Where are you living?
What are you doing?
What are your relationships?
Are you in right relation?
Where is your water?
Know your garden.
It is time to speak your Truth.
Create your community.
Be good to each other.
And do not look outside yourself for the leader.
"This could be a good time!
"There is a river flowing now very fast. It is so great and swift that there are those who will be afraid. They will try to hold on to the shore. They will feel they are torn apart and will suffer greatly.
"Know the river has its destination. The elders say we must let go of the shore, push off into the middle of the river, keep our eyes open, and our heads above water. And I say, see who is in there with you and celebrate. At this time in history, we are to take nothing personally, Least of all ourselves. For the moment that we do, our spiritual growth and journey comes to a halt.
"The time for the lone wolf is over. Gather yourselves! Banish the word struggle from you attitude and your vocabulary. All that we do now must be done in a sacred manner and in celebration.
"We are the ones we've been waiting for."
Let us pray, and let us play, and burn the old year and its fears on Aug. 1, the festival that comes at the midpoint between the June Solstice and the September Equinox, and is the necessary moment for releasing old pain, grudges and karmic sludge, and purifying the heart and the field for the harvests to come. We have, as always, the choice between fear and love. It's clear which one we choose. But how we affirm it, with passion and courage, is the question. Let's sing it with all our strength. Keep Holding That Frequency.
THE UNIVERSAL FESTIVAL CALENDAR
July 1, Wednesday
The Romans called this month September ("seventh") until it was named July in honor of the famous statesman Julius Caesar by his adoptive son Octavian, who would claim the title Augustus and name the eighth month for himself, thereby pushing September to its present position as the ninth month. Caesar, who is usually said to have been born on July 12 or 13 in 100 BC, may be the most celebrated Cancerian in history, though he was clearly atypical, likely having a formidable fornax of Leo fire in him too. Among the many acts that made Caesar one of history's most acclaimed artists of power was his reform of the Greek (originally Egyptian) solar calendar into the Julian calendar that was to be the timekeeping standard for the ancient Mediterranean and Christian world for the next 1600 years.
From ancient times, when the Romans called July 1 the Kalends of July and through the middle ages as well, it was said that if rain came on the first of July, the next four weeks would be rainy too.
This date has gained additional importance in modern times as the anniversary of the day (1968) when the nations of the world committed themselves to halt the proliferation of nuclear weapons.
July 1, Wednesday, 4:21 pm HT; July 2, Thursday, 2:21 am UT;
Full Moon in Capricorn, moving opposite Sun in Cancer, the first of the two Full Moons in this Blue Moon month. Creative, dynamic, complementary opposition between female and male energies, more favorable for professional and service relationships than for marriages. Role reversals apply now, as masculine solar energy is most advantageous now in domestic work, and feminine lunar energy is in the domain of the spiritual master. Teaching activities by Wise Women are favored, in the season of the High Priestess.
This is not the easiest Full Moon of the year, as the Capricorn Moon conjoins Pluto while she opposes the Cancer Sun, and these points are at a 90° "square" to the Moon's Nodes on the Libra-Aries axis, forming a kind of second-strength Grand Cross of planets and Nodes, rather than planets only. We know from the Moon-Pluto conjunction that this moment can be emotionally turbulent for the least awake, while it can also be powerfully transformative for those who can use the leverage of squares to shift relationships into healthier and more harmonious directions.
For Theravadin Buddhists, this Full Moon is observed very much like Asalha Puja. Devotees of Theravada celebrate Dhammachakka, the Buddha's first public teaching; and Wessana, the first day of a three-month retreat during which the Buddha realized the teaching of the eightfold path.
July 2, Thursday
Roman Catholic feast of the Visitation. This holy day commemorates the moment when Elizabeth, mother of John the Baptist, perceived the mission accepted by the Virgin Mary in bearing divinity into the world, and catalyzed one of the great feats of poetic inspiration in history. It is said that when Elizabeth grasped the nature of Mary's future and praised her as exalted among all women, Mary fell into a silence of humility and bliss, then joyously chanted for the first time the words of the divine love poem known in Latin as the Magnificat.
July 3, Friday
The dog days, in which the Sun aligns with the position of the Dog Star Sirius, traditionally the hottest time of the year, begin today.
This day is Rosa Mundi (Rose of the World) day in the Palestinian Calendar.
July 6, Monday
Birthday (332 CE) of the Roman emperor, military genius and stoic philosopher Flavius Claudius Julianus, who was also a prolific author said to exceed all the Augusti except Marcus Aurelius in beauty of writing. He is best known to history as Julian the Apostate for his having attempted to restore the old Olympian religion some 40 years after Constantine allegedly named Christianity the state religion of the Roman empire. From the day Julian died at 29, in battle outside the Persian capital of Ctesiphon, it has been unclear whether the fatal blow came from the enemy cavalry, or from a Christian soldier in Julian's own ranks.
Also the birthday of Tenzin Gyatso, the 14th Dalai Lama (1935), living incarnation of Avalokiteshvara, Bodhisattva of Compassion, comes on the same day as the birthday of Padmasambhava.
July 7, Tuesday
In Japan, this day is Tanabata, festival of the lovers, sacred to the kami of the stars. For more on this myth, see Crossing the Water.
In the Celtic tree calendar, 7/7 begins Holly Month, said to be favorable for balancing the polarity of male and female.
July 8, Wednesday
Mercury enters Cancer. Most astrologers consider this placement neutral -- but quick, restless Mercury is never completely comfortable in the watery, Moon-ruled sign of the home, though gossip does tend to spike while he's in the house. Until July 23.
July 9, Thursday
In the Baha'i calendar, this date commemorates the martyrdom of the Bab.
July 10, Friday
On this day (1057), Lady Godiva pulled off, in more ways than one, an act of civil disobedience that remains among the most celebrated in history. Determined to persuade her husband Leofric to lift heavy taxes and other oppressive burdens from his people, the Lady rode skyclad through the town square, to the amazement and admiration of all. Leofric got the message. Tax cuts ensued.
July 11, Saturday
In the Roman Catholic calendar, feast of St. Benedict (born 480), the most influential founder abbot in the early monastic movement, whose order was invaluable in keeping the flame of learning and spirit alive during the Dark Ages after the fall of the Roman Empire. Benedict is said to have passed away on this day in 543.
As David Elkington notes, however, in In the Name of the Gods, Benedict may not have actually existed. His name may derive from the late Roman deity Apollo Benedictus -- blessed Apollo -- and the monastic rule ascribed to him may have been compiled by a body of monks who founded the Benedictine order.
July 12, Saturday
Henry David Thoreau was born on this day in 1817.
Reed Dance Day in some of the African tribal Calendars.
In the Baha'i calendar, this day honors the Deity as Kalimat, or Sacred Words.
July 10 - 16 (one week)
Many Japanese Buddhists, especially those living outside Japan, now celebrate the annual festival of Obon, when the families of departed ones set lanterns afloat in river, lake and sea, to affirm the soul's unquenchable light and help redirect lost souls on their way to Amida's Pure Land, the Western Paradise.
See also Japan's solar Obon festival on 8/15. It's best to check local schedules, as Obon will likely be most celebrated on and around the weekend of 10 - 12 July.
July 13 - 19 (one week)
In ancient Khemt, one of the most sacred weeks in the Calendar, having the birthdays of Ra and the five neters who form the myths of Aset ("Isis") and Ausar ("Osiris"), and climaxing in the New Year Festival. The birth of the five "epagonal" neters is an epoch-making cosmic event that forces a sharing and realignment of Ra's power by expanding the Earth year from 360 to 365 days. For more about this crucial cosmic event, see "The Game of Chance" in When It Rained in Egypt. This critical time shift makes possible the later Greek, Julian and Gregorian solar calendars.
Shown here L - R: Horus, Nephthys, Osiris, Isis and Thoth. Set, too chaotic for this tableau, is not shown. The birthdays of the neters:
7/13 - Birth of Ra (Month of Mesore, day 30)
7/14 - Birth of Ausar, aka Osiris, neter of vegetation, the male creative force
7/15 - Birth of Hor ("Horus") as Light Being. He will later be born in a physical body as the son of Aset and Ausar, and will grow into the falcon-headed solar hero who saves Khemt from the next neter.
7/16 - Birth of Set, lord of the red desert land, and force of chaos and destruction, brother and murderer of Ausar
7/17 - Birthday of Aset, better-know to us by her Greek name of Isis, neter of female fertility, most widely revered and beloved of all ancient mother goddesses. Sister and wife of Ausar, she restores him to life through her powers as healer, lover and magician, and bears him the solar child Hor on Dec. 25.
7/18 - Birthday of Nebt-Het ("Nephthys"), sister of these four neters, also wife of Set and lover of Ausar, to whom she bears Anup, aka Anubis. Nebt-Het is revered as the keeper of secrets, and also as the Khemitian counterpart of Venus/Aphrodite
7/19 - New Year begins with festivals of Djehuti ("Thoth") and the Marriage of Aset and Ausar, parallel to the Greco-Roman feasts of Aphrodite/Venus and Adonis, held on the same day. This day begins the season of inundation, sacred to Hapi, neter of the Nile. Month of Thuthi, ruled by Djehuti, begins. It is now seven days to the annual Nile flood.
July 13 (Monday) sunset - 14 (Tuesday) sunset, depending on actual sighting of the New Moon:
In the Islamic calendar, this day 27th day of Ramadan is Laylat al-Qadr, the Night of the Opening or Imparting. It commemorates the night before the end of Ramadan when Allah revealed the entire Qur'an to the angel Jibril (Gabriel), who then dictated the verses to Mohamed, Peace be Upon Him. On this night angels are said to descend to Earth and bestow blessings. Old copies of the holy book are restored, and beautiful new copies are made ready, in time for this day. Special readings of the sacred text, in addition to the readings regularly done at worship, are held at mosques, at other public places, everywhere. This feast begins a holy festival week culminating in the last day of Eid al-Fitr at the end of Ramadan. This day is said to be more efficacious for prayer than a thousand ordinary months, and thus many devout Muslims spend the entire night and the next day in prayer.
July 14, Tuesday
On this day in 1789, the people of Paris stormed the city prison in an act of liberation that the French have celebrated as Bastille Day ever since. And on July 14 in 1988, the first crop circle appeared near Silbury Hill in England.
July 15, Wednesday
New Year's day in the Olympian calendar of the ancient Greeks.
This day is also St. Swithin's Day, the most celebrated — and long considered the most reliable — of all west European weather markers. For centuries people in Brittany and the British Isles chanted that if it rains on St. Swithin's Day, it will rain for forty days more; but if it's fair, we'll have forty days of sunshine.
In Mayan calendar systems, this day begins the next round of the Tzolkin, or 260-day calendar (1 Imix, Tzolkin 1). The Uinal of Fire, the first of the 20-day uinals in the cycle, vivifies the world with divine fire and purifies all of life so that growing may begin again with the coming Uinal of Earth. The symbolic bird for this uinal is the Blue Hummingbird, the energetic principles those of Initiation and Sowing.
July 15, Wednesday, 3:25pm HT; July 16, Thursday, 1:25am UT:
Dark Moon conjunct sun in Cancer. Intense, but joyous, useful blending of female and male energies, especially in domestic relationships. In European countries influenced by Greco-Roman customs, this was traditionally the time of housewarming after marriage and the honeymoon in June. Women are in their element, men unusually flexible and receptive, at this Dark Moon and the New Moon that soon follows.
This Dark Moon is potentially the most intuitive, emotional and potentially creative of the year, with Neptune in Pisces at a 120° trine to the Moon-Sun pair.
In the Beth-Luis-Nion Celtic tree calendar used by devotees of the faerie path, the New Moon following this Dark Moon is the eighth New Moon following the Winter Solstice. It begins Tinne, or holly month, considered auspicious for direct, mystical contact with Divinity, especially for the male warrior's vision quest of the sacred feminine.
July 16, Thursday
On this day in 1251, Our Lady of Carmel was reported to have first appeared on Mt. Carmel in the Holy Land.
July 17, Friday
In the Japanese solar Calendar, this day marks the re-emergence of the Sun Goddess Amaterasu-O-Mikuni, who had plunged the world into darkness by retreating into her cave in fury after she was ridiculed by her brother, the trickster Susanoo-O-Mikuni. Her retreat and reappearance are the Japanese version of the universal myth of the departure and return of the Light, and along with it, the life force of the Earth.
July 18, Saturday
Birthday of astrologer, alchemist and mathematician John Dee (1527), the most celebrated of all occult and magical adepts in the England of Elizabeth the Great and Shakespeare.
Venus enters Virgo. While she is said to be "in detriment" in this sign, her placement here is not so much oppressive for her as just dull. The owl-and-the-pussycat scenario of Venus in Virgo may intrigue the Goddess for a while, as Marilyn Monroe was drawn to Arthur Miller and Einstein -- but it is only a matter of time before she longs for Joe Dimaggio and JFK again. Venus tends to be less spontaneous and playful in Virgo, more tentative and emotionally restrained.This does not last long, as Venus moves retrograde into Leo on July 31. See UFC for June 6.
Probably July 18 - 21 (three days) -- depending on the actual sighting of the recent New Moon:
In the Islamic calendar, the sighting of the New Moon following the Dark Moon of July 26 is the first day of the lunar month of Shawwal. It begins Eid al-Fitr, one of the year's holiest times, which comes now just after the end of the holy month of Ramadan, by which time both body and soul have been purified by fasting, and the devoted ones achieve high energy and clarity. That's why Shawwal means "Light and Vigorous."
July 19, Sunday
This day marks the central summer of Adonis' annual appearance on Earth during the warm months. His marriage to Aphrodite/Venus is celebrated on this day.
July 20, Monday
In the Tibetan Buddhist calendar, this day is Choekhor Duchen. It commemorates the day Buddha Shakyamuni first taught the four noble truths and turned the wheel of the dharma in Sarnath, India. This festival is also called drukpa tse shi, which means the 4th day of the 6th month of the Tibetan calendar.
July 21, Tuesday
Roman Catholic feast of St. Victor, hero of a spectacular martyr scenario from the early history of Christianity. Victor was an army officer whose legion was stationed at Marsilia (Marseilles) when the emperor Maximian himself came to eradicate the Christian virus from the army of southern Gaul. On refusing to renounce his faith, Victor was dragged through the city streets, whipped and beaten by the mob, then tortured on the rack and thrown into prison, where he was visited by angels who sang so majestically and filled his cell with such a blaze of light that by morning, the three guards on the night watch had converted to the worship of the Christ. Maximian had the guards beheaded, handed Victor once again to the fury of the mob, then gave him another chance to spurn the "dead Jew" and honor Jupiter. Victor replied by kicking the god's image down the altar stairs, whereupon the emperor had the offending foot cut off. When Victor burst into a joyous song of gratitude, Maximian ordered him to be crushed under a mill stone, which cracked and broke apart as soon as it touched Victor's flesh. Then the order was given to behead what was left of Victor -- one can well appreciate the trepidation the executioner must have felt by now as he stepped toward his task -- but God evidently decided to waive further agony. The bodies of Victor and his guards were weighted and thrown into the depths of the sea, to prevent any veneration of their resting place, but the four saints washed ashore anyway and were enshrined in a grotto.
In the ancient Greek calendar, this day was sacred to the prophet and teacher Damo, who was said to have received all the secret wisdom of her father, Pythagoras.
July 22, Wednesday
In the Roman Catholic calendar, feast of St. Mary Magdalen, one of the most devoted disciples of Jesus. According to some ancient legends, Mary Magdalen was the bride of Jesus and mother of his children, and after Jesus' departure for India, was said to have sailed with her children and St. Joseph of Arimathea to Marsilia (now Marseilles), where devotion to the Madeleine has always been especially fervent.
On this day the Maya celebrate their annual feast of the Sun, in honor of the god Ah Kin, on this day, and ritually enact in an elaborate circular procession the Sun's annual progress through the four quarters of the zodiac.
On this date the Greek Festival of Poseidon and the Roman Neptunalia are held to honor and placate the sea, and pray for protection from earthquakes.
In some Native American calendars, the month of the Sturgeon begins on this day.
July 22 - 28 (one week)
The ancient Greeks celebrate this week as the Panatheneia, or "All Athenes", honoring the beloved Goddess of Athens in her roles as giver of wisdom and sender of inspiration. Various cultural and academic competitions are held now, along with offerings and prayers for the Goddess's continued favor.
July 23, Thursday
Sun enters Leo, the Lion, sign of his own rulership and source of his greatest strength. The ensuing month has long been sacred to Helios/Apollo and other solar deities. Bold, forward movement is favored now as water yields to fire. The thrust of action shifts from introversion, and emphasis on domestic matters, to outer-directed aggression, considered in the most literal sense of the Latin root word: a determined movement toward the goal, an impulse to attack in the way that committed musicians, and all who pour their full passion into the creative moment, play with attack.
July 23, Thursday
Mercury enters Leo. Here he is said to be "in fall," his energy so overwhelmed by the glare of the Sun that he may have to resort to tricky business to get what he wants. A planet in fall is not merely blocked or temporarily inept, as he or she would be when "in detriment," but is effectively reversed and corrupted. When Mercury is in fall, and resentful of the Sun's easy authority, he can be an appallingly good example of the adage that dishonesty is invariably the product of fear.
July 25, Saturday
In the Tibetan Buddhist calendar, this 10th day of the 6th lunar month is the birthday of Padmasambhava (Guru Rinpoche), the great teacher who founded the Old Sect (Nyingma-pa) lineage, revealed the Bardo Thodol, or Tibetan Book of the Dead, and the "direct path" method of enlightenment by intuitive realization. On the timing of this and other Tibetan feasts, note that in 2015 the Tibetan lunar year began in February, a month after the Chinese year, as the Tibetans prefer whenever possible to keep their sacred year out of synchrony with the Chinese year.It’s best to check the timing of this feast, and other Tibetan holy days, with your local Buddhist community, as celebration dates can vary widely among Tibetans, and can be affected by Chinese disinformation.
In the Roman Catholic Calendar, Feast of St. James the Greater, brother of Jesus, considered by some to be the leader designated by Jesus to carry on the work of the Christian movement until James' position was later overshadowed by the more assertive evangelism of St. Paul.
James has also been identified as the Essene Teacher of Righteousness cited in the Dead Sea Scrolls.
July 25 evening – 26 evening, Saturday – Sunday:
In the Jewish calendar, this sunset-to-sunset interval is Tishah B'Av, the Dark Time, one of the year's more somber days of ceremony and fasting, commemorating the suffering of the Jews from the time of the destruction of Solomon's temple in Jerusalem, and other calamities of ancient Jewish history.
July 26, Sunday
Among the Norse peoples, the festival of Asatru is celebrated on this day. It commemorates Odin's ride on the shamanic horse Sleipnir, with whose help Odin is able to enter the three worlds of the gods, living mortals and the dead. This feast thus evokes and symbolizes the experience of shamanic, transhuman states of consciousness.
Among the ancient Khemitians, this is the most important day of the year because it begins with the Heliacal Rising of Sirius (Sothis) -- that is, the rising of the Sirius above the eastern horizon just before dawn -- and is therefore the day that normally begins the annual Nile flood. Curiously, the Khemitians know that the flood will begin with three days of rust-red water, as the river washes away the red dust of the dry season, then flows blue-green as the riverbed clears and is ready for new teeming life. Thus it happens every year, not only at the time when Pharaoh suffers the seven plagues heralded by Moses, that the river runs red as blood for a few days.
In the Roman Catholic Calendar, feast of St. Anna, mother of the Virgin Mary.
Carl Gustav Jung, seminal psychologist and master mythographer who articulated the importance of universal archetypes in the human collective unconscious, was born on this day in 1875.
July 31, Friday, 00:44 am HT; 10:44 pm UT:
Full Moon in Aquarius, opposite Sun in Leo. Complementary fire and air relationships, especially favorable for creative teamwork with friends. This Full Moon is relatively uneventful, with the Moon and Sun forming no major angles of relationship to any other planets, though it does form an advantageously creative 72° quintile with Uranus in Aries. Otherwise this Full Moon is notable as the second half of the Blue Moon that formed on July 1 -2, and as a useful interval of rest before the powerful energies of the Sept. 28 eclipse begin to align.
In the Jewish calendar, this Full Moon on the 15th day of the month of Av is Hag Haahava, the festival of love. In ancient times, young women wearing white dresses performed ritual dances in vineyards, where the young men waited for the moment when they were allowed to approach and propose to their beloveds. In Israel today, and in Jewish communities worldwide, this day and the coming weekend will be a time to declare love, propose marriage and offer gifts.
In the Hindu calendar, this Full Moon in the month of Ashadh is called Guru Moon, and is traditionally celebrated as Guru Purnima. Also know as Vyas Purnima, the day commemorates and venerates the great sage Ved Vyasa. He is the Adi Guru -- that is, the root teacher, the original master -- of the Hindu Dharma, who classified the Vedas and wrote the eithteen Puranas. He is also the author of The Mahabharata.
July 31, Thursday
Birthday (1831) of Helena Petrovna Blavatsky, author of Isis Unveiled and co-founder with Henry Steele Olcott of the Theosophical Society.
In the Norse calendar, feast of the trickster and fire god Loki and his consort Sigyn.
In the Roman Catholic calendar, feast of St. Joseph of Arimathea, guardian of the Holy Grail.
Finally, in calendars throughout the Earth, this day begins the season of midsummer festivals in the Northern hemisphere, midwinter festivals below the equator. These days have been celebrated in Europe since ancient times as the Celtic feast of Lughnasad and the Christian Lammastide cycle of the new bread and the first fruits of the harvest. As the Sun is now in high Summer, in the middle of the sign of Leo which the Sun rules, this time is sacred to solar and fire deities and energies of all kinds. In the southern hemisphere, this is the season of Imbolc.
Want to know how any of these days affects you? An Astrocartography reading covers not only your unique, personal planet energy lines and crossings, but the conditions of timing that are in effect for you now, and in the months and years ahead.