THE UNIVERSAL FESTIVAL CALENDAR
LIGHT THROUGH THE DOOR
Hail, and welcome to the Universal Festival Calendar for June, 2014. Let's first check our astral bearings before we get to the main news and mything links of the month.
This month the powerful Grand Cross of April - May, anchored by Round 5 of the ongoing Uranus - Pluto square that is the main motor of friction and change for these pivotal years of 2012 to 2015, has now dissolved as Jupiter moves ahead into the late degrees of Cancer and on into Leo in late July. Does this make June a rest month, then, one of the easier ones we'll see until Round 6 of the Uranus - Pluto square starts a rolling boil again in October? Hardly.
Uranus and Pluto, the two main heavyweights and stressors in the planets' energy wheel, remain only 5° away from an exact 90° angle with each other all month. And while this can look at first glance like a brief respite from tension and turmoil, there will be plenty of high-temperature aggression and brainless impatience as Mars, now moving forward again, remains linked to the other two implacable players in a three-armed T-cross that runs into early July. He'll be in a close square to Pluto until Solstice week, most intensely on June 14; and then he'll segue into a square to Uranus that runs through July 4 after it hits the crash point of fire and danger on June 25. Both these unstable combinations are built for speed, neither for concord or compromise. Mars square Pluto in Capricorn means fanaticism in the key of rage, a ride on the fire horse of ambition and power, a determination to get what one wants at any cost or risk.
Mars opposite Uranus in Aries is like Mercury going retrograde -- on which more soon -- inside an internal combustion engine, causing electronic flameout and heavy smoke. Mars rules all fire technologies and Uranus rules electrical equipment, so hard alignments between these two always spell mechanical danger, and that's why an astrologer will always check whether these two are in different garages or car washes, or about to hit head-on, when advising you on travel plans. There are countless famous examples, one of them Princess Diana, who was likely to be murdered anyway, but might have bought a little more time if she'd known that she should not have gone near any machine bigger or more complicated than an egg timer on the day of that fatal car chase through a tunnel.
Is there more? Yes. Always. Mars is also in detriment in Libra, opposite the sign of Aries that he rules,so that his power is blocked and limited here, and he's likely to be even more strongly driven than he is to prove a point and pick a fight, behaving at his worst in the ways that moved a disgusted Zeus to call Ares, in The Iliad, "the most hateful of all the gods who hold Olympos. Forever quarrelling is dear to your heart, wars and battles." (V, 699-700, tr. Richmond Lattimore). Mars is clearly on the attack now, or he may be the external image we have always needed for projecting out onto something or someone else the violence we'd rather not see in our own hearts. The more hate and fury there are in our collective energy field, then the more it must happen that anger escalates to action at once, mercenaries multiply and thugs in black congeal into paramilitaries, and souls in agony inflict on scores of others the harm they want to work on themselves.
Are there ways to navigate this, especially now that we are in the mental, facile month of Gemini, ruled by Mercury, and the Sun will move at the Solstice into Cancer, ruled by the Moon? Yes, usually we can find ways to bring some reason and restraint to bear against Mars -- Athene famously defeated him, thus showing what logos and the law can do -- and Hermes-Mercury can at least outrun him. Like bird deities who embody the velocity of thought, trickery and truth -- like Hermes' ancestor, my revered Lord Thoth, guiding spirit of the archival Hermes 3 site -- Mercury has the wit and agility to jump out of harm's way, and use the power of writing and speech to galvanize the collective will toward constructive action. At least he can do this when he's on his game. For most of this month he's not, as he moves retrograde from June 7 (see Daily Listings below), going back into the sign of Gemini that he rules, then moving forward into one of his less comfortable zones in Cancer, the watery passage and most feminine of all signs, where he has little choice but to trust intuition, imagination, dreaming and the other resources of the mythic realm.
He is less than fully fast and confident in places where his glib mentality can't plumb the dark and the depths of what is not yet manifested and definable, and that's why he can't move well in times like these that stir so many to such profound grief. We are traversing murky, mobile waters here, with little or no sense how big those shapes are that we can sense shifting and sliding below, how deep they range, how fast they go, what they want with us. All we know for sure is that they're coming close enough to see, and we'd best be ready to match their tempo. What we expect and how we relate may be the key.
I remember the time my former wife Kimie and I went out from the beach at Lovina on the north shore of Bali, in one of the little motor boats that say they'll take you to see dolphins, and sometimes they do. We didn't see any that morning. But what we did see, when I looked over the gunwale into the water below, was a white shape that looked at first like Moby Dick's big brother, and it was rising up at us. Soon we could see him, or her: a giant ray that must have had a wingspan of five meters or more, and, I imagined, a stinger as big as my arm. We wondered -- ahhhh -- what this being's intentions were, and I sang, "We come in peace, and so do you." And then, amazingly, we could see the ray was there just to dance, not strike. For some minutes he or she stayed about two meters below us, matching our speed. We started moving our arms to match the ray's wing moves, and aligned our breath with his rhythm. After some 400 meters of this he veered away as quickly as he'd come up toward us. We asked Wayan the boatman if he'd ever seen anything like this, and he said no, never. He'd never seen a ray of any size in the ocean, much less see one that came to play with the people in his boat.
We'd explore a lot more of this when we moved from Kyoto to Hawaii, organized dolphin encounter groups, and found out how surprisingly easy it can be to communicate with animals in and near the sea, like dogs who'd stop barking and fighting on the beach when I just kept sending the thought, "Thanks for doing your job so well." It hit me that what that ray in Bali was doing looked so much like hula because that's what it was, pure feeling in motion, without any need to follow a form or embellish or do anything in one's own way, just do what is beautiful without thinking at all.
TRANSPARENCY NOW! READY OR NOT!
Effortless acceptance is so much easier in the element of the ocean, where boundaries dissolve into the all-embracing universal heart, all is included, as it was when the Age of Pisces was new, a hundred years before Joseph was a boy carpenter's apprentice, and Mary not yet born, and Vergil wrote of Astrea Redux, the blest return of the Goddess of Truth who had fled Earth long ago to live in the clean air, far above those who kept claiming to speak for her as they threw mud and much worse at everyone else.
We see the starry goddess here, in an image that shows what sector of the zodiac she called home. She is said to have become the constellation Virgo, and to have placed next to her at Libra the scales that have always symbolized the vital link between justice and truth. How fitting it is now that the same images of air deities and winged beings who appeared as the Age of Pisces began must come again now at the beginning of Aquarius. It must happen now, or more accurately, we are responsible for creating now, the change from ever more toxic secrets and lies to the time of new transparency. There is more in Surfing Aquarius about how bizarrely unsustainable the old paradigm of secrets, and the fear that seeds them, has become, and how transformative and healing th new transparency will be as we come to trust and master it..
It is no accident that Open Source has proliferated, and Julian Assange, Edward Snowden, David Wilcock, Steven Greer and others have all become the early agents of unstoppable disclosure, within the Uranus Square Pluto years of 2010 to 2015. And there is more on the way. Ever wonder why it is that we have so much trouble with our communication programs and devices while our other machines still work fine, why the codes we've always used suddenly don't get accepted, why WiFi signals and the whole electronic grid seem to be about as solid and stable as banana cream pies? Why do we feel more intuitive? Why do new serendipities multiply? Because we're getting more telepathic -- at least those of us who are open to it -- whether we recognize the change or not.
KNOWLEDGE IS POWER, SECRETS ARE ARMOR
The phrase Ipsa scientia potestas est was written by Francis Bacon in 1597, but Knowledge is Power was probably an ancient and obvious idea long before Plato. What became very different in the early Age of Pisces, when information itself became a tool and resource of methodical governmental control, as it was when the suspicious Capricorn Caesar Augustus chose his poisons and ran his spies, was that now it was clear that information is strongest when it is held and hidden as top secret, classified, for your eyes only, and it loses its juice when we circulate it. Was it only a matter of time, then, before ambitious, devious men would create government bureaucracies to gather dirt on rivals they wanted to control? Before Hitler would wonder what Himmler had on him? Before the paranoid Capricorn Stalin, who knew why the NKVD symbol showed a sword longer and sharper than the hammer and sickle put together, poised to fall on unwary talkers, dared not touch NKVD chief Lavrenty Beria -- and before Khrushchev and his cabal could knock off Beria after Stalin's death, they had to line up enough ducks to cover the whole surface of Lake Baikal? Would it take so long thereafter before Lyndon Johnson, asked why he hadn't kept his campaign pledge to replace the terrified Capricorn J. Edgar Hoover, replied, "I'd rather have him inside the tent pissin' out than outside the tent pissin' in"? Did this make the Pentagon Papers inevitable? Sure. Just as it had to happen a few years later that the glowering Capricorn Richard Nixon would create a secret enemies list and a secret phone recording system, and would authorize his staff to create a spy team called the Plumbers, whose job it would be to plug the newly-coined term "leaks"?
THE DAM BURSTS
Now, after a Uranus half-cycle of 42 years since the Watergate breakin, the Wheel of sudden reversals and the Great Year turns again. When the old order can no longer stand, as it cannot now, it must try to intimidate everyone by gathering trillions of dirty little secrets not because those who have them will ever constitute a threat, but because those who employ data lickers to perpetrate this unwholesome business apparently feel that the best way to be sure they can't be harmed by anyone, anywhere, is to gather all imaginable dirt on everybody. Inevitably, the karmic bills have now begun to come due.
Among the signature stories of the week is the revelation in an article by Mark Karlin -- source of Susan Melkisethian's photo here -- that in inadvertently identifying its own CIA chief in Afghanistan, the US government has clumsily committed a security breach of the kind it falsely accuses Edward Snowden of having done deliberately. Excruciating relvelatons are on the way, and already arriving, like the White House admission three days ago (May 27) that the US conducted a fake vaccination program in the Middle East to gather DNA samples from suspected terrorists who would then be targeted for assassination. One naturally wonders, then, how many other DNA samples the US may have collected on its own people at the time of the H1N1 swine flu vaccine scam in 2009 -- and how so many other things come to the bursting point now that a European court has just ruled that Google must honor the requests of those who want to protect their privacy from internet searches, and the uncannily accurate Sean Hyman and other respected investment analysts have just forecast a 98% chance of a stock market crash this year. Hyman is, of course, now the target of a federal government investigation.
And so it goes, and grows, as all the secrets take on a life of their own. They are no longer the raw material of control scenarios by the ones who collect them. The secrets are now effectively running the Archon Follies, and the work of keeping them is exhausting. So the secrets themselves are looking for a way to bail, in the manner James Joyce wrote about in Ulysses: “Secrets, silent, stony sit in the dark palaces of both our hearts: secrets weary of their tyranny: tyrants willing to be dethroned.” Peace and some freedom of movement can come only when we move away from the fear that invariably produces dishonesty, toward the love that enables truth, and out of obsessive, separative mentality and toward the unifying dimension of myth. Thus we acknowledge the winged messengers of truth who fly back into our consciousness now.
Like the Mesopotamian deity Shamash, shown in this spectacular image that proclaims his glory as Lord of Light, here to illuminate and lift the world. The symbolism is rich here. He stands atop a bull, as is fitting for a sun god in flight as the Age of Aries succeeds the Age of Taurus in about 2,300 BC -- right at the beginning of the Bronze Age -- and thereby announces that the earth technologies of brick walls and stone buildings will now yield to technologies and arts of fire. A solar disk surmounts his crown, and the center of his body is ringed by a winged circle that terminates in flames. There are countless versions of this winged disk, like the Egyptian banner image at the top of this page, placed within and in front of countless per-ba ("temples"). It shows that all who enter here are under the guidance of Shamash's Egyptian counterpart, the solar warrior Horus -- for more see When It Rained In Egypt -- and they are also under his protection, for the meaning of the double cobra is that the venom of the cobra kills the unworthy, while the spit of the cobra guards and heals the innocent. This is why rows of cobras surmount the walls of many temples, as they do at Saqqara, suggesting that the cobras project an energy canopy of those within the sacred space below.
We may need all the guidance we can get this month and through the year, and all the protection we can give to one another, as some outcomes that crowd toward us now are so unimaginably strange, and so unpredictable that seismic shifts in our field of consciousness may now be at hand. Consider these apples. US Republican congressmen, who for years have been aligned with and funded by private prison corporations whose profits have been swollen by Draconian drug laws that have given the US the highest incarceration rate of any country in the world, have just blocked the DEA from interfering in states that permit the use of medical marijuana. The GOP politicians, citing a shift in public opinion, have also passed two amendments preventing the federal government from blocking states from producing hemp, and conducting hemp experiments. Santo cielo! I may have to go work for a while as a "trimmer" (bud harvester) in Humboldt County CA while I still can, before the War on Drugs comes to an end after 45 years, cannabis is legalized again, and The Corporation That Must Not Be Named -- slammed hard again last week in the biggest March Against [Voldemort Inc.] yet -- tries to produce FrankenPot, the perfect hunger stoker for all those GMO foods.
JURY DUTY GETS TEETH
Does it get still woolier? Yes. Any minute now, as Glenn Greenwald, who helped Edward Snowden blow his megamillimeter whistle about the PRISM, the NSA's data-trawling program, is about to publish the names of Americans the NSA has spied on. And the threat of prosecution against him and others who risk the consequences of telling the truth comes just as the word also spreads about jury nullification. As Thom Hartman explains in "If the Law is Bullsh*t, You Must Acquit," this little-known rule of American jurisprudence -- based on the 6th amendment to the US Constitution -- gives a jury the right to find a defendant not guilty if they're convinced the law that is being used to prosecute him is unjust. Naturally, judges and the system of control that appoints them want to keep jury nullification secret. Defense attorneys may not mention nullification to a jury, and a juror who happens to mention knowing about it will be excused at once from jury duty. But now, as we get more informed and more active, citizens can take action to begin striking down oppressive laws. They may even get to spell Bullshit -- see The Decline of Bullshit in last September's UFC -- without an asterisk.
In his recent, brilliant piece about the relentless and predictably punished truth seeker Thomas Paine, Chris Hedges quotes Eric Foner's view that the key to social change is “a change in the nature of language itself, both in the emergence of new words and in old words taking on new meanings.” We may now be on the brink of a fundamental and far more profound shift of consciousness, beyond vocabulary and meaning, to the whole intent and posture of perception that sets what we see, and how we communicate it. As we pass from the stagnant murk of the late Piscean Age to the fresh air of Aquarius, we may now be ready to outgrow the travesty that what passes for Science has now become. At the dawn of the modern era, in the century of Galileo and young Newton, Science was a thrilling pursuit of overarching universal laws that could be the architectonics of a Grand Design, the unified field that Einstein was after.
Now, a hundred years later, the lower-case materialist "science" that has in many quarters replaced religion as as the touchstone of truth, has become so small in its analytical focus, so driven to define, delimit and classify, to squeeze into tinier structures and boxes, to specialize and separate, that even scientists working in the same general field know next to nothing about each other's special areas. We are now even more inclined than human beings have always been to see ourselves as different from each other and the world, and now, inevitably, as more righteous than others. This mental illness that could now be called a collective krisosis (judgment disease) will inevitably incline us to conceal what we know from the ones we distrust, until secrecy itself becomes addictive, as it has.
We gravitate, then, to avoid suffocating and shrinking into puny parodies of ourselves, to those things that affirm our bigness. The Intentional Field where matter and energy shift and blend. The ocean, and the sanctity of water that we affirm again this month in Global Water Dances. The Sufi path, which does not even mention Hell, but sees us all as going home to the Friend sooner or later, no matter how we kick against our own happiness on the way. The universal language of sound, and a Global Harmonization by Circle of Sound at the June solstice. And the dimension of myth, which sees us all in different costumes, but playing the same archetypal roles and stories.
We see more and more the last of the winged beings we'll meet this month: the Lady Ma'at, who is easy to distinguish from the other emanations of the netert (divine feminine) from the single feather in her headband that symbolizes the lightness and purity of Truth itself. She is immensely powerful, in the way of those who are quiet not because they keep secrets, but because they affirm the sacred discipline of silence. One of the ancient Khemitian chants that have survived and are sung again now, which I first heard from Ani Williams in a melody reconstructed by Jim Berenholtz, has the choral phrase Tu a Ra, Ma'at: The only thing mightier than the Sun is the Truth. Ma'at's importance to us here is that she means not only harmony and order as well as truth, but also mercy, and this is why Ma'at the Merciful sometimes appears in the judgment hall of Osiris as the only being who can override the severity of the facts.
Feminine forces for the sissolving and healing of differences would be much in the news now if so many louder stories were not clamoring to be heard. Pope Francis, who last appeared on this site in May, 2013 as the ring announcer of Pluto Square Uranus Round 3, has just hinted that a nihil obstat (Nothing stands against it) big enough to bounce the Moon is now on the table. Responding to a petition from 26 women who wish to join the priests they love in the sanctity of marriage, Francis has announced that priestly celibacy "is not a dogma of faith, it is always the open door." Will the change come all at once? Possibly, at the speed we're moving at now. But even if not, we know a sliver of light has now come through a porta ferrea that was sealed more than fifteen centuries ago.
Will it happen now that ordained ministers like me will get to concelebrate with priestesses we love the new Aquarian wedding ceremonies that culminate in the question, "Do you, Father Jim, take Sister Martina to be your lawful life partner, to have and to hold her, to love and cherish her, and to give her all that you have, all that you are and will be"? The moment when he kisses the bride will be vastly more historic than anything that looks more urgent now. As the ceremony ends, the whole community gathered for it will speak and sing what is holy: "We now pronounce you united in truth, ready and worthy to be artists of friendship and teachers of love."
The melody is forming, and will be in the air in our lifetime. Keep Holding That Frequency.
THE UNIVERSAL FESTIVAL CALENDAR
June 1 - 30
June is named for the divine mother Juno (Greek Hera), wife of Zeus/Jupiter. Juno is the protector of the sanctity of marriage and the family. She is the Triple Goddess as Mother, and she is so committed to this duty that in her wisdom she forgives the constant, flamboyant infidelities of her husband, and knows when it is time to teach, and when it is time to get out of her children's way.
June 3, Tuesday
In the ancient Greco-Roman solar calendar, this day is the purification festival of Ambarvalia, so-called because it was customary to circumambulate the fields and pray for the continued blessing of Demeter/Ceres on the growing plants.
June 3 (Tue) eve – 5 (Thu): two days
In the Jewish calendar, the feast of Shavuot. While celebrated in early Jewish history as a festival of the first fruits, observed with offerings of bread, Shavuot has since come to serve the more profound purpose of commemorating the revealing of the Torah, and the moment when Moses received the tablets of the Law on Mt. Sinai. Among some Jews, the revelation of the Torah is the most important event in the history of the Jewish people, and thereby gives Shavuot a dignity equal to that of the High Holy Days of the autumn.
June 4, Wednesday
Birthday of Socrates (470 BCE). His habitual claim to ignorance (eironeia) is the source of irony, and its implication that the one who claims not to know is more awake than anyone else on the stage.
This day is also the Baha'i feast honoring the Deity as Nur, or Light.
June 7, Saturday
Mercury goes retrograde only a few days after he has entered the sign of Cancer. He will move backward into Gemini on June 17, then reverse his backward motion and "go direct" on July 1, re-enter Cancer on July 13, and leave his "retrograde shadow" when he returns on July 16 to the zodiac point where he first went backward. Thus the conditions that apply to all Mercury retrograde intervals -- delay, confusion, mechanical malfunction, blockage and general human bozosis in the Mercury-ruled areas of transportation, communications, commerce and thievery -- take on as well the specific qualities of the zodiac signs he is in. We can expect crablike side-to-side moves and Cancerian indirection June 7 to 17, then rapid movement in every direction at once June 17 - July 1.
June 7 - 15, (8 days)
Vesta Aperit, the day when the sanctuary doors of Vesta's temple are opened before the onset of summer, and the ancient Romans celebrate for eight days the rites of Vesta (Greek Hestia), the goddess protector of virginal womanhood. Vesta's devotees, the Vestal virgins, embody the unlimited creative power of the Triple Goddess at the moment of her first great rite of passage, from Virgin to Mother. The main events of the Vestalia:
6/7 - The Feast of Vesta.
6/8 - Festival of Mens, goddess of Mind. Intellectual attainments are still traditionally held on and near this day each spring, at the end of each academic year.
6/15 - The Ides of June, the climactic celebrations of the first fruits of the harvest. The doors of Vesta's temple are closed again.
June 8, Sunday
In most Christian calendars this is Pentecost Sunday, commemorating one of the first recorded trance channeling events in history: the miracle by which the Holy Spirit inspired disciples of Jesus to "speak in tongues," thereby communicating in languages not consciously known to them, to a multitude of listeners from many nations.
Among Christians Pentecost replaced Whitsunday, which was sacred to the Norse goddess Frigg, who was wife to Odin and honored among ancient Germanic peoples as Queen of Heaven. It was customary on this day to celebrate the power of feminine love by decorating love nests and mazes.
In the southern hemisphere, Pentecost is a late autumn or early winter feast, and has a different quality from the northern festival. As shown here in Urubamba, Peru at the fiesta of Senor de Torrechayoc -- the Lord of the town is Jesus now, but used to be the creator Wiracocha -- is actually a classic example of how the southern hemisphere does in late May and June the rites that northern peoples do in December. Like the Japanese On Matsuri -- see Dec. 15 - 18 -- Peruvians stage a ceremony of purification and renewal in which they escort the sacred image from its home to a temporary shrine from which it will return en el octavo, eight days later, in a procession that is anything but solemn. Imagine thousands of masked dancers and clowns costumed as cops, bishops, lawyers and almost everything else that is ripe for a lampoon, and hundreds of devils with suggestive noses, and you get the general idea of Pentecost in South America.
June 10, Tuesday
In the six-season calendar of the aboriginal people of Australia, the second season of the dry half of the year, Wurggeng, begins about now. This cold weather time, lasting until mid-August, begins with a fire festival called Gunak Garriwurlge, "Start to Light Fires."
In the Mayan calendar systems, this day begins the Uinal of Maize, the seventh of the 20-day Uinals in the current cycle of the Tzolkin, or 260-day calendar (4 Imix, Tzolkin 121). The principle that rules this Uinal is Proliferation. This uinal is advantageous for medicine, birthing and prophecy. Its symbol is the Butterfly.
June 11, Wednesday
In the Roman Catholic cycle of saints' days, this day is the annual feast of St. Barnabas, whose name was Joseph until he gave all his considerable wealth to the early Church and was called "the son of consolation", and ultimately became so eloquent and compelling an evangelist that he teamed with St. Paul. It was said in Athens that the distinguished Barnabas played Jupiter to Paul's Mercury.
June 12 (Thursday), 6:13pm HT; June 13 (Friday), 4:13am UT:
Full Moon in Sagittarius opposite Sun in Gemini. This Full Moon is usually favorable for domestic activities sacred to Juno, and for the setting up of a home -- another reason why marriages occur so often in the Gemini month of late May through June 20. The two great lights form no major angles relationship with other planets, so that this Faull Moon is relatively uneventful. The action is a lot hotter at the coming Dark Moon.
In the Wiccan calendar, this is the Strong Sun Moon, when the days begin to grow longest and nature's vitality is at its peak.
Buddhists in Thailand and the Theravadin Buddhists of most other East Asian countries celebrate now a brilliant and festive counterpart to what many other Buddhists celebrate on the Full Moon of May 14 (see last month’s UFC) as Visakha Puja, or Buddha Day, commemorating the birth, life and teachings of the Awakened One.
In the Celtic tree calendar, this lunation is Oak Moon, said to be the halfway point of the lunar year that begins in December. On this day awakened and reverent human beings renew commitments to their gods, their guides and the path of their work.
June 12, Thursday
In the ancient Khemitian calendar, Festival of Mut, the primal mother netert who, as wife of Amun the creator and mother of Khonsu the Moon, was the female figure in the great Theban triad. Mut was represented by a vulture, said to be the most fiercely protective of all mothers and the most nurturing, even shedding her own blood to feed her young. On this day food offerings from Mut were given to all the neters. (Month of Epipi, day 29).
In Brazil, this is Dia dos Namorados, the Day of the Lovers. While it may appear at first that this is one of the many festivals of love and marriage celebrated now in Gemini month, this doesn't apply in the southern hemisphere. The reason why couples give one another chocolate, cards and flowers -- even lingerie -- on this day is that it comes just before the feast of St. Anthony, the "marriage saint" to whom women in Christian countries have long offered prayers and rituals to attract a good husband, or these days, just a boyfriend.
June 13, Friday
In the Greco-Roman world, this day is sacred to Athene-Minerva, whose double aspect of warrior and healer embodies the ideal combination of strength and wisdom.
In ancient Khemt, this day celebrates Hor ("Horus") the Beloved, that is, the heroic falcon-headed neter of light in his mildest aspect as divine child of Aset (Isis) and Ausar (Osiris). On this day stories of the birth and infancy of Hor, and how Aset, Djehuti (Thoth) and Amun protected him from his murderous uncle Set by enclosing the baby in a reed cradle and hiding him in a papyrus swamp, were told in poetry and music ceremonies. (Epipi, day 30).
In the Roman Catholic calendar, feast of St. Anthony of Padua, tireless guardian of the poor and oppressed, and patron saint of all advocates of social justice.
Birthday (1865) of the Irish poet and metaphysical explorer and visionary William Butler Yeats. With him, in the words of his poem Easter 1916, “a terrible beauty is born.”
June 14, Saturday
In the ancient Khemitian calendar, the month of Mesore begins. Mesore is sacred to Heru-Khuiti, the Gemini-like composite neter who combines the solar qualities of Hor (Horus) and the lunar qualities of Djehuti (Thoth) into one figure who represents all dualities. Mesore begins the critically important time of calculation and preparation for the annual Nile flood, and each year a week of mystery rites is enacted, leading to the major time marker of the Summer Solstice. Among the main ceremonies:
6/15 - All the neters of sea, earth and sky gather in heaven to reaffirm their union with Ma'at, neter of Truth. (Mesore, day 2)
6/16 - Festival of Het-Hor/Aset (Hathor/Isis) as mystic way-shower, embodied in the star Sothis (Sirius). It is now 40 days, or 4 decans (10-day "weeks") until July 26, when the heliacal rising of Sirius in the east just before dawn heralds the coming of the flood. (Mesore 3)
6/18 - Day of Emergence of Min, the love neter, the most beloved emanation of Amun the Creator. Min's headdress of tall double plumes and large erect phallus proclaim his prowess as the principle of male generative energy. (Mesore 5).
6/20 - Amid all this season's festivals of male potency and female fertility, today's rite of the of Anup (Anubis) is most mysterious. On this day Anup, the Opener of the Way who conducts souls to the Duat, or land of the dead, goes to visit every necropolis in Khemt. His day in this cycle is one of the Khemitian calendar's most emphatic reminders of the presence of death even amid the late Spring surge of new life, and is in some ways a counterpart to the middle European Mother Night, on 12/20. (Mesore 7)
6/21 - Wadjet ceremony, honoring the protective cobra neter whose power as destroyer of evil makes her so important to the nation's life that she appears in the uraeus serpent on pharaoh's crown and other regalia. Her placement at this point in Mesore marks the 35 days of purification before the next flood season.
June 15, Sunday
In Japan, this is the day of the Suijin Matsuri ("water person festival"), the annual Shinto ceremonies honoring the Kami, or divine principle, of Water.
In the Roman Catholic Calendar, this is Trinity Sunday, which is celebrated eight weeks after Easter. It often falls, as it does this year, near the Triple Goddess spring festival on May 31 - June 2: yet another fascinating example of the ways in which ancient "pagan" feasts transmuted, even if strangely, into Christian counterparts. In this case the festival of three divine women -- Maiden, Mother, Wise Woman -- became a Sunday in honor of an all-male trio of Father, Sun and Holy Spirit.
June 16, Monday
This day is one of the heartiest of all literary anniversaries, for it was on June 16, 1904 that Stephen Dedalus and Leopold Bloom went in search of each other, and of Molly Bloom, in James Joyce's Ulysses. The day has been called Bloomsday ever since the novel was published in 1922; and it celebrates, among other things, the love and general fidelity that bound James and Nora Joyce in a marriage lasting 37 years, until his death in 1941.
The Sikh community commemorates on this day the fifth of the Sikh gurus, and the first to be martyred: Guru Arjan Dev, who was executed at the order of the Grand Mughal Jahangir for preaching against corrupt institutions of power and wealth.
June 19, Thursday
In the Roman Catholic calendar, this day is the feast of Corpus Christi, the Body of Christ, honoring the mystery of the Eucharist and, behind it, celebrated universally since very ancient times, the core myth of divinity immanent in the vitality of the grain. Corpus Christi comes 60 days after Easter.
June 19 (Thursday), 7:05 pm HT; June 20 (Friday), 5:05 am UT;
The Summer Solstice is one of the four major festivals of the solar year, when the Sun reaches the quarter point on the zodiac wheel, the cardinal "hinge" of 90°, as the Sun enters the sign of Cancer, the Crab.
This month the Crab's side-to-side moves are favored in all things. This is more a time to organize what has been gained, and plan what comes next, than it is either to start new enterprises or dissolve old ones that don't work. The Crab lives where it can jump sideways into an ocean wave when threats appear. Those who have the humility and aquatic skill to do this are favored now. The sideways motion of the Crab is also that of the Farmer, who works sideways in rows to preserve productive order.
While it is the Summer Solstice in the northern hemisphere now, the southern hemisphere celebrates, Yule, the Winter Solstice.
Among the countless Summer Solstice celebrations and rites: The Sonnenwende ("Sun's turning") of the Norse calendar, so named because at this point in the year, the Sun reaches its farthest northern sunset point on the horizon, and must now begin moving south, and bringing with it the hotter, more rapid movement of Summer, and everything else that the South implies. The season of husbandry begins now in bonfires that mark this day as the one when the Sun's light stays longest in the Sky.
In northern Russia, especially in St. Petersburg, this day begins the White Nights, which last for the next ten days. In this and other fire festivals that can get more raucous than most, fireworks and all, many people love the days of the Long Light because this is the best time to burn the chaff and the worry of the year gone by, and get ready to work the field under the waxing Sun, and care for children.
In Pagan and Wiccan calendars, this day is called Litha, honoring the Water Goddess and the Green God. Many European peoples also honor the Green Man, leafy symbol of nature's resurgence, counterpart to the Egyptian Osiris. (Photo -- with the author as the Green Man -- courtesy Charles Priest of Da Kine Rags).
In some Native American calendars, this day begins the Month of the Flicker. Hunting is easier than it usually is.
In parts of Europe, June 21 has been known since the Middle Ages, and still is, as Cuckoo Warning Day. It's believed that if cuckoos sing today, a wet summer is on the way.
In many ancient calendars, this is one of the year's best times for honoring Wise Women.
In the Greco-Roman calendar, this is the Day of All Heras (Roman counterpart Juno, for whom this month is named), when we gather to listen to women who have achieved spiritual Union with the Great Goddess. In ancient Britain this was the Day of Cerridwen, celebrating all Wise Women.
Taoist festival honoring the Heavenly Emperor Shang-Ti and celebrating the active presence of the Tao in all things. This is the time when the masculine Yang force is at its peak, and initiates the season of fire, south and Summer.
In parts of Europe, June 21 has been known since the Middle Ages, and still is, as Cuckoo Warning Day. It's believed that if cuckoos sing today, a wet summer is on the way.
June 20 - 23, (four days)
Among the Lakota and other Native Americans of the plains, the four days before, during and after the Summer Solstice are the annual time of the Sun Dance, a festival of fasting and healing ceremonies affirming the manifestation of Takuskanskan the Creator in all things.
June 23, Monday
Venus enters Gemini. Though it is not exactly true that in Gemini Venus is more talker than lover -- spending herself in everything from elegant conversation to the silliest gossip, depending on who's playing Venus at the time -- it is true that words from and to her will be persuasive now. She is likelier to enter short, frenetic love unions that are more mouth than heart.
June 24, Tuesday
Midsummer Day. Feast of St. John the Baptist. In very ancient times, this day was as important in marking the year as its opposite, Christmas, on 12/25. Among the most ancient sky scientists, who made their calculations millennia before the oldest written records that we have found so far from Ur and India, this was the actual day of the Summer Solstice, and thus it is still celebrated throughout the world in fire festivals that symbolically purify the fields to make the crop healthy.
Thus June 24 is the date of the Aztec Festival of the Sun and its Inca counterpart, Inti Raymi, celebrated at Sacsayhuaman in Cusco in an elaborate ritual dance procession that enacts the Sun's annual journey through the zodiac, and his rebirth in the waxing solar light of what is, below the equator, the Winter Solstice.
On this day the Baha'i honor the Deity as Rahmat, or Mercy.
June 26 (Thursday), 10:10pm HT; June 27 (Friday), 8:10am 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 seventh following the Winter Solstice. It begins Duir, or oak month, and favors visions, shamanic journeys and all communications between worlds.
June 28, Saturday
For the Iroquois of the American Northeast, the Cancer New Moon that probably appears on this day begins the Green Bean Ceremony, celebrated in dance, rituals of atonement and thanksgiving for the maize harvest.
Over these same four days, the Pueblo and Zuni peoples of the American Southwest celebrate the Corn Dance, when the fields are blessed with prayers for an abundant summer harvest.
June 29, Sunday
In the Islamic calendar, sunset on this day will probably begin the holy month of Ramadan, which should continue until July 27. Timing can only be estimated here because like most Muslim holy days, Ramadan becomes official only when the New Moon is sighted and verified. The holy month is a time of purification through fasting during the daylight hours, alms giving and forgiveness, and the repair of broken heart cords. For more on Ramadan, see What’ll You Have?
Feast of Sts. Peter and Paul. As Peter was the "rock" on which Jesus was said to have founded his church, Roman Catholics have long considered this day auspicious for beginning the foundations of new buildings, and praying for safe and smooth construction throughout the Summer. Alternately, this was celebrated as the feast of St. Peter, the next day as St. Paul's day.
Among the Yoruba and Santeria communities of Africa and the Americas, this is the feast of the Orisha Eleggua, the intercessor and protector, who reveals the destiny of souls
June 29 - July 3, (5 days)
For Zoroastrians, these days are sacred to Haurvatat, creator and sustainer of the element of water.
June 30, Monday
In the Tibetan Buddhist calendar, this is the 4th day of the 6th lunar month, and is one of the four great sacred days of the Tibetan lunar year. This summer festival is called Chokhor Duchen, the Turning of the Wheel, marking the moment when the Buddha spoke of the dharma for the first time to his five core disciples. This moment, on whatever day it is celebrated in various countries, is of cardinal importance because it represents the beginning of the Buddhist faith and the first actual formation of a sangha, or community of believers.
Feast of St. Paul, the first and most successful evangelist in the history of Christianity, and, if 1 Corinthians 13 and his famous speech on the Areopagus to the skeptical citizens of Athens (Acts 17) are anything to go by, one of the most gifted poets of his time.
In the Mayan calendar systems, this day begins the Uinal of Rain, the eighth of the 20-day Uinals in the current cycle of the Tzolkin, or 260-day calendar (11 Imix, Tzolkin 141). The symbolic bird for this uinal is the Eagle.
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.
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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.