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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.

PRELUDE  TO

THE UNIVERSAL FESTIVAL CALENDAR

October 2015

 

BLOOD SACRIFICE

 

Hail, and welcome to the Universal Festival Calendar for October, 2015, a month so highly charged and full of opportunity that among the best things anyone can do right now, at a moment when we have come to exhausted repletion, is to say less, if not say nothing at all. To ask before each word is spoken and written, "Is what I am about to do an improvement on silence? Or is it better right now to practice touch and telepathy, and even more precious, listening. How wonderful if the whole world could now enter a ten-day period of Vipassana meditation, in which not a word is spoken, and even gestures and glances yield the place of practice to the utmost respect for the spaces, silences and boundaries of others. So important does this seem now, as I get ready to spend two weeks in retreat in a dieta in Iquitos, in the Peruvian jungle, that it necessitates a short UFC prelude, maybe one of the shortest ever written.

 

ALL RIGHT. WHAT HAPPENED IN SEPTEMBER? DID ANYTHING?

 

Yes. Plenty happened. The eclipse of Sept. 13 was energetically impactful, and the Sept.  27 - 28 Blood Moon eclipse was both spectacular to look at and riveting to our imagination and our active sense of our possibilities. The distinctive feature of the shifts and waves in the Intentional Field is that they are energetic rather than material, and this is why it will appear to materialists and entertainment consumers that nothing has really happened in recent days, just a lot of air and ink and fake fear, while it will feel and be intuitively clear to spiritual people that a refining moment has come, that the broader mass of human beings is beginning to awaken and see through the toys and the lies, and that the criterion of change, however we experience and define it now, must have two features.

 

One is that important communal, social and global changes will no longer be anticipated and witnessed only in the solid field of things, that is, of alleged re-ality (from Latin res, thing). We are about to catch up with Max Planck, who pioneered quantum mechanics a century ago, and with Bill Hicks, who observed that Matter is only Energy slowed to a lower rate of Vibration. We are getting more aural-kinetic naturally now, not so much through practice and effort as in response to the hummings of the world, their effect on us and our effect on them. The other new condition is that our new shared telepathy is being compelled into practice now for two reasons. One is that corporate-controlled mainstream media nearly everywhere are utterly corrupt, mendacious and self-serving, and will not communicate anything but propaganda and distraction in service to archon agendas of control. The other factor is far weightier: the positive goal of achieving our collective human capacity for communication without intermediaries or technology. It is time.

 

THE CIRCUS ANIMALS DESERT

 

Readers of W. B Yeats will remember his 1939 poem "The Circus Animals' Desertion," written by a man of 74 as he claims now, in his winter, that he has passed beyond the time when "My circus animals were all on show, Those stilted boys, that burnished chariot, Lion and woman and the Lord knows what." He proposed to leave behind now all the symbols and archetypes, and look at life in its most stark and basic as he "must lie down where all the ladders start In the foul rag and bone shop of the heart." The time ahead will feel a lot like this, and not only in its sense that an elaborate and very entertaining theatre piece that has been played to near-perfection, and has hit its intended mark of keeping most of us placid and unmotivated, can no longer hold stage now that more of us see through the lies and the toxic agendas that are directly threatening to us.

 

If widespread and profound change is not being reported, this does not mean that it isn't going on, only that word of it is being suppressed by media babysitters who aim to keep the mass of humanity distracted and asleep. The facts are that dozens of great and small economies are in flux and ruin. The immigration crisis in Europe and the MidEast has become so urgent that even countries who have centuries of interaction and history (for example, Germany and Austria) now apply increasing controls to border traffic and money transfers. An astrology client in Zurich told me last week that the school bus carrying her 11-year old son and his classmates was stopped by border authorities who required all the children to show their passports before they could be admitted again to Switzerland. New internal passport programs are now being implemented in the USA to control domestic surface traffic. The new domestic passports will be needed by some 30 million Americans. So far. In the end, the question will not be whether any resistance to the system is needed. The whole rotting poison farm will simply unravel, and may hardly be noticed.

 

WHY A BLOOD MOON?

 

Because the Moon, and the rest of the planetary theatre company to which she belongs, relish an opportunity to teach the Economy of Blood -- that is, the ways in which we use our human blood in a manner that is healthy and sacred, or in violent and vicious ways that endanger not only own own personal health, but the wellbeing of our planet and the beings who live upon her. The Moon, who times the woman's reproductive cycle, presides over the one universally holy spending of blood that human beings do, the discarding of female blood during the menstrual cycle. Ancient matriarchies taught women the monthly ceremony of consecrating their blood to Earth and community. While some practitioners of feminine spirituality are reviving these  rites, few women think their menstrual blood is sacred, and many have been taught to believe it is unclean.

 

It is not. What is unclean is the male usurping of the women's bloodgiving through rites of validating themselves through the shedding of their own and other men's blood, all of it so relentlessly and gorgeously costumed in patriotic spectacle and religious crusade that until now, every generation of young men jumpy with testosterone has been suckered by the scam of fighting for your country and your faith when what you are really fighting for is the profit and power of death merchants, bankers and poison makers. What makes the shedding of male blood toxic? Not the blood itself. But the emotional energy of rage, hate and fear that ride on blood that is violently and needlessly spent, as it seeps and splashes into Earth's living body and makes her sick with human aversion and agony. This is why violent events in nature mirror emotional turbulence in human beings.

 

A Blood Moon naturally evokes the thought of violent bloodshed in many people because it is always easy to slide into fear, while love usually takes some effort. If we choose to live in love, and encourage others to lift into love as well, then the Blood Moon shines in promise with the color of the root chakra, the hue of cinnabar and pomegranates,  of medicinal fire and copper, the red element of Venus, of devotion and courage, of the sacred blood that the Maiden and the Mother shed now to clear their life field for a new chance to be fruitful. It is time now to understand this blood as a powerful agent of preservation and renewal  -- and to envision the goal of shedding this blood only.  This is one of the great overarching tasks as we evolve beyond the individually driven Age of Aries, and the hierarchic Age of Pisces, and into the communal Age of Aquarius.

 

What's one good way to build and hold it together, no matter what? Sing to each other, of course, look into one another's eyes and hearts. And say nothing as we explore the discipline of silence. We will all get through, and in the end it will all come round right at its own speed ideally in a tempo much like a waltz. Keep Holding That Frequency.

 

THE UNIVERSAL FESTIVAL CALENDAR

Daily Listings

October 2015

 

Oct. 1, Thursday:

In the ancient Greco-Roman calendar, Oct. 1 is the Dionysia, one of the two great annual festivals of Dionysus/Bacchus, god of ecstatic experiences, including wine. This date marks the time of the grape harvest and blessing of the new wine, and celebrates the phase of the god's youth, as Dionysus goes below the Earth to Elysium and for the next six months becomes Plouton/Pluto, ruler of the underworld, who will be reborn as Dionysus in the spring.

 

Oct. 2, Friday:

Birthday of Mohandas Kharamchand Gandhi (1869). As we move from the lobby into the opera house where the Aquarius Overture is underway, we get a program note from Gandhi's Non-Violence in Peace and War (1948): "A non-violent revolution is not a program of seizure of power. It is a program of transformation of relationships, ending in a peaceful transfer of power." The transformation of relationships, including our own aims and expectations for them, is everything. It is the essence of the Aquarian opportunity.

 

Oct. 3, Saturday:

In the Khemitian Calendar, Festival of Het-Hor, aka Hathor (month of Hethara,  day 18).

 

In the Mayan calendar systems, this day begins the Uinal of Love, the fifth of the 20-day Uinals in the current cycle of the Tzolkin, or 260-day calendar (3 Imix, Tzolkin 81). The principles that rule this Uinal are Anchoring and Sprouting. The symbolic bird is the Hawk.

 

In the six-season calendar of the aboriginal people of Australia, the pre-monsoon storm season of Gunumeleng begins about now. This season of nearly three months, one of the year's longest, runs until late December.

 

Oct. 4, Sunday:

On this day devotees of the Yoruba and Santeria religions celebrate the festival of Orunmila, the Orisha of Wisdom and Protection from evil.

 

In the Roman Catholic calendar, this day is the feast of St. Francis of Assisi, founder of the Order of Friars Minor -- better known as the Franciscans -- and celebrated stigmatic, ascetic, ecologist and animal communicator.

His famous prayer: "Lord, give me the courage to change what I can change, the serenity to accept what I can't change, and the wisdom always to know the difference."

 

In the Jewish calendar, this day that follows the week-long Sukkot festival cycle is Shemini Atzeret, that is, the Assembly of the Eighth Day. On this day, which has traditionally marked the beginning of the rainy season, a prayer for rain, called tefilat geshem, is offered as a petition for abundant crops

 

Oct. 5, Monday:

This day honors Bodhidharma, better known to the Japanese as Daruma, the beloved Zen philosopher who taught that Buddhahood is innate in every human being, and can be activated with consistent spiritual practice.

 

Also on this day, Mahayana Buddhists celebrate the beloved energy of compassion known as Kwan Yin, Kannon, Kwan Sen and Tara, and commemorate the moment at which she became a bodhisattva.

 

Oct. 6, Tuesday:

In the Jewish calendar, this is Simchat Torah, day of "Rejoicing in the Law." On this day, which immediately follows Shemini Atzeret at the end of Sukkot (see previous) a new annual cycle of Torah reading begins with procession of the scrolls, and other rites that include the blessing of children. For some Jews, the revelation of the Torah is the most important event in the history of their faith, and Simchat Torah thus has for them a dignity equal to that of the autumn high holy days of Rosh Hashana (Sept. 14 - 15) and Yom Kippur (Sept. 22 - 23).

 

Oct. 7, Wednesday:

In the ancient Khemitian (aka ancient Egyptian) Calendar, Feast of Ma'at, neter of Truth (Hethara day 21). For pictures of Ma'at, whose feather headdress symbolizes the lightness of truth, see the entry portal to this website, and Ma'at the Merciful. On the same day, by one of the wonderful synchronicities that mark the resonances among ancient calendars, the ancient Athenians celebrate the festival of Pallas Athena, guardian of the city, source of inspiration and goddess of wisdom.

 

10/8, Thursday:

Venus enters Virgo: While she is said to be "in fall" in this sign, her placement here is not so much oppressive for her as just dull and relatively powerless, without the goddess' usually irresistible playfulness . 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 remains in Virgo until November 8, when she enters Libra, one of the signs (along with Taurus) that she has traditionally been said to rule of her rulership, though the arena of her wise action as mother and teacher really belongs to Hera/Juno.

 

Oct. 9, Friday:

One of the great Celtic and Wiccan festivals of the Triple Goddess, this one marking the mature woman's transition from Mother to Wise Woman, from the grower of new life to the source of wisdom.

 

Mercury goes direct, reversing his backward motion of the weeks since Sept. 17. Confusion, delay, blockage, miscommunication and inexplicable human bozosis begin to lift now in the Mercury-ruled areas of transportation, communications and commerce. Not everything clarifies at once, however. It will not be until Oct. 24 until Mercury clears his "retrograde shadow," i.e., arrived at the point in the zodiac where his retrograde motion began. This is why, even though the Black Moon to New Moon interval of Oct. 12 - 14 would normally be advantageous for the launching of new enterprises, it will not be as accurate and clear as it would be if Mercury were not still in his retrograde shadow.

 

Oct. 9 - 14 (6 days),  Hethara 23 – 28:

In the Khemitian Calendar, the concluding events of the great legend cycle of the Passion of Ausar ("Osiris") are enacted. At this time the dispute between Set, brother and murderer of Ausar, and Hor (Horus), the falcon-headed solar hero, son of Ausar and Aset (Isis), is submitted for judgment by Ra, Neter of the Sun, after a long and inconclusive combat that has scorched and damaged the body of the Earth. Hor's case is argued by Djehuti (Thoth), neter of letters and learning; while Set becomes the first personage in history to act as his own advocate, and have a fool for a client. Ra and the other Neters deliberate and announce their decision in three days. The other events:
10/12   Ra awards the fertile Black Land by the Nile to Hor, and the desert Red Land to Set, thereby establishing a dynamic balance between the forces of creation and destruction, light and darkness.

10/14   Festival of the coronation of Hor as Egypt's spiritual king, who from now on will manifest in the physical kingdom of Egypt in the person of the pharaoh.

 

Oct. 10, Saturday:

The Draconid meteor shower peaks tonight. The Draconids, not the most celebrated meteor shower of the year in any case, will be at their best this year, as the waning Moon will go black in two days.

 

Oct. 12, Monday, 2:07 pm HT; Oct. 13, Tuesday, 0:07 am UT:

Dark Moon conjunct Sun in Libra. The ensuing New Moon has often been considered one of the most harmonious and cooperative Moons in the calendar, coming as it does at a time when domestic teams must start to work on getting the harvest in and weighing it - the most obvious function of Libra, the Scales. This Black Moon carries a powerful electric charge, with Uranus the revolutionary and bringer of change in Aries opposing both the Moon and Sun. This is likely to be the time when the changes set in motion last month will sink in and stir the deepest catharses among those who have been fiercely denial-bound.

 

In the Beth-Luis-Nion Celtic tree calendar used by devotees of the faerie path, the tenth New Moon following the Winter Solstice begins Muir, or vine month. The ceremonies of this month are performed in thanksgiving not only for the grape harvest, but for all fruits of the field that grow on vines.

 

Oct. 12 – 16 (five days):

In the Zoroastrian tradition, these days celebrate one of the divine emanations of Ahura Mazda: Ameretat, the green force, creator and driver of vegetable energy.

 

Oct. 12 - 22 (eleven days):

One of the world's most spectacular festivals is held now in Phuket, Thailand for nine days in the ninth lunar month of the East Asian calendar, in honor of the Chinese Nine Emperor Gods. During this "Vegetarian Festival," abstinence from animal food is the least challenging of the rites of mortification and purification that celebrants perform in trance as the Gods are said to ride them in dances and walking through hot coals, and piercing their bodies with metal skewers and gold adornments that hang from their eyebrows and ears. The priests must keep themselves physically strong, so they'll b able to hold greatly excited bodies, and bring them safely back out of trance.

 

Oct. 13 – 21 (nine days):

In India, the Navaratri festival gives thanks to the Divine Mother for the abundance of the Earth. The Navaratri is one of India's most important festivals, celebrated by all the country's main religious and ethnic groups. This ancient festival is held at the beginning of Autumn; each day a different aspect of the Goddess is invoked and worshiped. The rites are addressed to Haidakhaneshwari and Durga (right), among others, two of the most primeval Hindu devis, especially to Durga, whose feast of Durga Puja celebrates the Goddess in her martial aspect as queller of demons and protector against evil.  The feast lasts for 9 days, the number of months in a human gestation period, and culminates in the feast of Dussehra on Oct. 21.

 

Oct. 13, Tuesday:

For Roman Catholics, feast of St. Edward the Confessor, aka King Edward I of England (reigned 1042 - 1066). Edward was known especially for his religious zeal and his kindliness, which moved him to spend hours a day with lepers and beggars who crowded around him for a cure, and got it often enough that "the King's evil" became the term for the illnesses that the King's touch sent away. His reign was marked by honest government, protection and service to the oppressed and the poor, civil decency and courtesy. His successor was less interested in the love and good will of his people -- and his realm fell to William the Conqueror within months after King Edward's death.

 

Oct. 15, Thursday:

In the Roman Catholic Calendar, feast of the stigmata bearer and mystic St. Teresa of Avila. Her spectacular career of self-denial began when she was only seven, and ran away from her home hoping to be martyred by the Moors, who were no longer in Spain, having been forced either to convert or leave the country in 1492 by the same Ferdinand and Isabella who backed Columbus. In her early thirties, having become a Carmelite nun, she had a vision of the place she would occupy in hell if she did not overcome the weaknesses that held her back from complete and perfect devotion. She is portrayed in Bernini's famous sculpture, at the moment when her heart was pierced by a shaft of divine love.

 

Also on this day: Makahiki, the Hawaiian New Year Festival, commemorating the emergence from Po (Chaos) of Papa the Earth Mother and Wakea the Sky Father, whose union produced the Akua, the Gods and Goddesses of Hawaii.

 

Oct. 16, Friday:

This day is the Baha'i feast honoring the Deity as 'Ilm, Knowledge.

 

Oct. 17, Saturday:

On this day the Khemitian month of Koiak, sacred to the Lion netert Sekhmet, begins with Sekhmet's own Feast, celebrating her aspect as protector of the land and people.

 

In Japan, this day is the Shukaku Matsuri, one of the year's most important Shinto festivals, offering the first fruits of the rice harvest to the Kami, the divine principles immanent in nature.

 

Oct. 18, Sunday:

In the Roman Catholic and some other Christian calendars, the feast of St. Luke the Evangelist.

 

Oct. 19, Monday:

In the Roman Catholic calendar, feast -- if it can be called that -- of St. Peter of Alcantara (1599 - 1662), a Spanish monk and one of the outstanding athletes of voluntary suffering and privation in Earth history. Peter's cell is said to have been only 4 1/2 feet long, making it impossible for him to lie down, and he took only one meal every three days. The one indulgence he allowed himself was that in the dead of winter he would leave his door and window wide open, so he might have some slight sensation of warmth on closing them again.

 

Oct. 20, Tuesday:

In the Baha'i calendar, this day is celebrated as the birthday of the Bab, who would declare in 1844 that he was to prepare the way for Baha'u'llah, founder of the Baha'i faith.

 

Oct. 21, Wednesday:

The festival of El Cristo Negro, El Nazareno, also called the "Black Christ," is held on this day in Portobelo, Panama. The festival dates from about 1658, when the town was devastated by plague until the faithful prayed for a sign to show them how to invoke God's help. A large wooden crate mysteriously surfaced near a fishing boat. Inside was an 8-foot-high statue of Jesus, whom the people dressed in robes of purple, white and gold, and paraded through the streets. The plague lifted at once. Portobelo's people have never taken much interest in the question of whether the historical Jesus had a darker complexion than Jimmy Swaggart, or may have been descended from Ethiopian Jews. What matters is to venerate El Cristo Negro. The most devout, dressed in penitential purple, walk 53 miles from Panama City, and go the last mile on their knees. As Your Panama explains, the ship carrying the heavy statue to another destination "met a terrible storm that drove it back into the harbor. The ship attempted to leave five times, but every time a sudden and unexpected storm endangered the ship and everyone aboard. On the final attempt, the crew jettisoned the crated Black Christ to lessen the weight and save their lives."

 

The great nine-day Hindu goddess festival cycle of Navaratri (See Oct. 13 - 21) culminates today in the climactic feast of Dussehra.

 

Oct. 23 (Fri), 1:58am HT; 11:58am UT:

Sun enters Scorpio, symbolized in zodiac maps by the easily recognizable Scorpion, but also symbolized in the hermetic tradition by the Eagle, as in the quartet of Bull, Lion, Eagle and Angel (Taurus, Leo, Scorpio and Aquarius) that represent the four beasts of Ezekiel, the Christian evangelists, and many others who represent the fixed and secure orientation of human beings in mythic space.

As the Scorpion and its next neighbor on the wheel, the Chiron-like archer Sagittarius, are both designed by nature to deliver their most accurate sting while retreating, the energy of the time favors the protection of the harvest and other efforts that are now nearing completion. The teams normally gather now to complete their work of bringing in the corn, rice and wheat.

 

In the ancient Babylonian calendar, the Day of Willows, a festival of the lovers sacred to the god Bel and the love goddess Astarte.

 

 

Oct. 23, Friday

In the Mayan calendar systems, this day begins the Uinal of Death, the sixth of the 20-day Uinals in the current cycle of the Tzolkin, or 260-day calendar (10 Imix, Tzolkin 101). This Uinal is ruled by Mictantecuhtli, the Lord of darkness from which new life must proliferate in the next uinal. The Owl is the symbolic bird.

 

Oct. 23, Friday: eve - 24, Saturday eve:

In the Islamic calendar, this 10th day of the month of Muharram is Ashura (literally "ten"), a day that commemorates the martyrdom of Hoseyn, son of the Prophet's daughter Fatima, along with 72 of his family members and followers, including his sister Zeinab. This, as Azin Izadifar has kindly explained it, is one of those Muslim holy days that can differ widely in meaning and practice, depending on whether one is on the Sunni or Shia side of the faith. For Sunnis, whose ancestors carried out the bloody deed, this is an auspicious day on which believers fast and do other rites of purification. But for the Shiites, who are Hoseyn's spiritual descendents, this is a day of mourning on which fasting is strictly forbidden, and some believers bruise and bloody themselves in wild rituals of self-flagellation.

 

Oct. 23 - 26 (four days):

Among the Pueblo peoples of the American Southwest, the annual Tewa Buffalo Dances give thanks for the abundance of the harvest and pray for correct alignment of the people with the four directions and elemental energies. This rite normally comes each year in the days before the Full Moon in Scorpio (see 11/6), though the timing of the Buffalo Dances can vary among the native communities.

 

Oct. 24, Saturday:

In the Mahayana Buddhist calendar, this festival commemorates the sacred moment at which the divine being variously known as Tara, Kwan Yin, Kannon and Kwanzen attained bodhisattvahood, and became the lady of mercy and compassion.

Om Tara, Tu Tare, Ture Soha.

 

In a wonderful synchronicity, the Roman Catholic calendar honors St. Raphael, the archangel of healing, on this day.

 

And in another, the Yoruba people of Africa and the Santeria communities of the Americas, celebrate this day in honor of Erinle, the Orisha who ministers to the sick and injured.

 

Oct. 25, Sunday:

Lutherans and some other Protestant denominations celebrate this day as Reformation Sunday, commemorating Oct. 31, 1517, the day on which Martin Luther nailed to the door of Wittenberg cathedral the famous 95 theses that would launch the Protestant Reformation.

 

Oct. 27 (Tue), 2:06am HT;  12:06 pm UT:

Full Moon in Taurus opposite Sun in Scorpio. In this alignment the feminine is strengthened, as the Moon is "exalted" in the Venus-ruled sign of Taurus. This Full Moon is positively aspected, with the Taurus Moon forming a 120° trine with Pluto in Capricorn, and the Scorpio Sun completing a grand trine with Venus in Scorpio and Chiron in Pisces. While Venus is "in detriment" in Scorpio, the dynamics of this moment are favorable, especially for the healing of relationships, and the empowerment of individuals who are ready to claim and use their creativity. This Full Moo is not one of the year's most powerful, with only Neptune in Pisces forming a 60° sextile to the Taurus Moon and a 120° trine to the Scorpio Sun -- just as well, after the turbulent events of recent weeks and the further aftershocks to come in December and January.

 

In Tanta, between Cairo and Alexandria, and for Sufis who come from all over the Middle East and Europe, this Full Moon is the climactic night of one of the year's great moulids, or folk festivals. The heady chant Essayed elimen shibak madidu / Gabel yser men bilad u Rom bahadidu sings the spectacular miracle by which the 18th-century saint Sayed Badawen is said to have used his power of intention like a very long arm to pluck his friend through the ceiling of a prison in Rome and bring him back through the air to Egypt.

 

In the Celtic/Druidic calendar, this Full Moon in Scorpio month is called Mourning Moon, as befits the fading vitality of the year. Also Dark Moon, Fog Moon and Mad Moon, as many come unhinged now in this season of the witch.

 

Among the Hopi and Zuni peoples, this Full Moon is Ancestors' Day, when families place food offerings in lakes and streams in honor of their departed ones.

 

Oct. 27, Tuesday:

Feast of Ausar ("Osiris") at Abydos, principal temple of the Ausar rite. The neter of vegetation, who drives the plants upward through soil, stump, stone and anything else that is in the way of the Sun, is honored for his gifts of grain and herbs, all leafy life and fruits of the earth and the arts of wise rulership. Ausar waxes in his glory and power now, a few days before he will be eclipsed by his brother Set. See 10/31.

 

Oct. 28, Wednesday:

In the Jain calendar, the day after the Taurus Full Moon is Jnana (or Gyan) Panchami, also called Laabh Paacham. This festival honors learning, especially the spiritual knowledge contained in sacred books. The emphasis here is on the Jnana, transcendent wisdom, that is the fruit of pure spiritual study.

 

In the Celtic tree calendar, this day begins the Reed Month, said to be most favorable for communication with ancestral spirits and the strengthening of all family ties.

 

This is a day of great importance in the mythology of established religion. On this day in 312, the Roman army of Constantinus won the battle of the Milvian bridge, thereby winning the throne of the Augusti for the man who would be called Constantine the Great. It was said that the battle turned in Constantine's favor when his troops saw in the clouds a fiery white banner with the symbol of the cross, and the words In Hoc Signo Vinces -- In this Sign you will Conquer. The rest is controversial, but passes for history. Whether the emperor's belief was Christian or in Sol Invictus (Unconquered Sun), the religion popular with soldiers, the outcome was that by the end of Constantine's reign, Christianity had made the leap from a persecuted cult to the state religion of the empire.

 

Oct. 29 - 31 (three days):

Here, a week after the Sun's entry into Scorpio, these days have long been celebrated throughout the Celtic zone of Europe as Women's Merrymaking Days, a time for festivity and rituals of female spirituality.

 

Oct. 31 – 11/3 (four days):

In solar calendars throughout the Northern Hemisphere, this is the mid-autumn festival of the dead, directly opposite the new life rituals of greening, leafing out and renewal celebrated in Beltaine, May Day and other mid-spring festivals that are held now in the southern hemisphere. Among the many rites celebrated now:

 

Oct. 31 is Hallowe'en, of course.  This is the last day of the Celtic year, on which it is said that the Sun actually enters the gates of Hell, creating an opening wide enough to allow malicious spirits to fly out and create mayhem on the Earth for the next 48 hours. The spirits of the dead are believed to return to their family homes on the night of 10/31, and the annual children's custom of dressing as ghosts and ghouls and going door to door for treats echoes the ancient practice of placing food and drink offerings near the door to placate wild and hungry spirits that are apt to roam and rumble on this night. The great Celtic rite of Samhain, on the following day, begins the New Year with the feast of the death goddess Cerridwen, whose power waxes now as the Holly King, symbol of the waning sun, grows decrepit with the approach of winter.

 

Norse festival of the Thin Veil, so named for the belief that on this night, the opaque barrier separating the worlds of the living and the dead became transparent, allowing the two realms to see and interact with each other. This time also marks the annual death of Baldur and his beloved Nanna, the goddess of flowers, both of whom will be born again in the spring.

 

In the Khemitian calendar, festivals of the sun neter Ra, the cat netert Bastet and the lion-headed netert Sekhmet are all celebrated on this day. The last of these, in her dire aspect as teacher of magic, Lady of Fire and punitive destroyer of evil, is protector of women against rape and all sexual violence, as embodied in Egyptian myth by Set, neter of chaos and destruction, who perpetrates the murder of king Ausar, aka Osiris, on this day (see above 10/27). This feast is the ancient basis of links among Hallowe'en, medicine women and their feline familiars.

 

This last day of October is also a Goddess festival honoring the art of weaving. "Originally [Hallowe'en] was a celebration honoring our creator goddess. That is why the spider is one of the symbols of Halloween. The Hopis called their creator, Spider Woman." [Mahala Gayle Flenniken]

 

Among the ancient Sumerian people, one of the world's first festivals of light descending into darkness is held now as Inanna, Goddess of Life, enters the underworld to spend the next six months with Ereshkigal, Lord of Death and Rebirth -- but on condition that she spend the other six in the green places with her summer lover Dumuzi.

 

Myths of this Scorpionic death and transformation cycle occur among the Canaanites, Greeks, Japanese and many others.

 

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.