29 December 2016 – Astro-Weather: New Moon occurs at 12:53 am CST. At its New phase, the Moon crosses the sky with the Sun & so remains hidden in our star’s glare. A new lunar month begins & unlike a solar calendar month, which averages 30.437 days long, a lunar month (from one new Moon to the next) averages 29.531 days. This means that, on average, you’ll see the Moon in the same phase about one day earlier every calendar month.
Uranus reached opposition more than two months ago, but this outer planet can still be seen climbing high in the south around 6 pm CST, halfway to the zenith. It reaches its stationary point in southern Pisces today, when it lies east-southeast of Zeta Piscium.
ON THIS DAY IN HISTORY
6th Night of Hanukkah
The Feast Day of King David, ancestor to Jesus. There are various Old Testament reports on David: God is angered when Saul, Israel’s king, unlawfully offers a sacrifice, & later disobeys a divine instruction to not only kill all of the Amalekites. Consequently, he sends the prophet Samuel to anoint David, the youngest son of Jesse of Bethlehem, to be king instead.
God sends an evil spirit to torment Saul. Saul’s courtiers recommend that he send for David, a man skillful on the lyre, wise in speech, & brave in battle. So David enters Saul’s service as one of the royal armor-bearers, & plays the lyre to soothe the king whenever the evil spirit is upon him.
War comes between Israel & the Philistines, & the giant Goliath challenges the Israelites to send out a champion to face him in single combat. David, sent by his father to bring provisions to his brothers serving in Saul’s army, declares that he can defeat Goliath. Refusing the king’s offer of the royal armor, he kills Goliath with his sling. Saul inquires the name of the young hero’s father.
Saul sets David over his army. All Israel loves David, but his popularity causes Saul to fear him (“What else can he wish but the kingdom?”). Saul plots his death, but Saul’s son Jonathan, one of those who loves David, warns him of his father’s schemes & David flees. He becomes a vassal of the Philistine king Achish of Gath, but Achish’s nobles question his loyalty, & he is left behind to guard the camp when the Philistines march against Saul. Jonathan & Saul are killed, &David is anointed king over Judah. In the north, Saul’s son Ish-Bosheth is anointed king of Israel, & war ensues until Ish-Bosheth is killed.
With the death of Saul’s son, the elders of Israel come to Hebron & David is anointed king over all Israel. He conquers Jerusalem, previously a Jebusite stronghold, & makes it his capital. He brings the Ark of the Covenant to the city, intending to build a temple for God, but the prophet Nathan forbids it, prophesying that the temple would be built by one of his sons. Nathan also prophesies that God has made a covenant with the house of David: “Your throne shall be established forever.”
During a battle to conquer the Ammonite capital of Rabbah, David seduces Bathsheba, & causes the death of her husband Uriah the Hittite. In response, Nathan prophesies the punishment that shall fall upon him: “the sword shall never depart from your house.” In fulfillment of these words David’s son Absalom rebels. The rebellion ends at the battle of the Wood of Ephraim. Absalom’s forces are routed, & Absalom is caught by his long hair in the branches of a tree, & killed by Joab, contrary to David’s order. Joab was the commander of David’s army. He laments the death of his favorite son: “O my son Absalom, my son, my son Absalom! Would I had died instead of you”. When David is old & bedridden, Adonijah, his eldest surviving son & natural heir, declares himself king. Bathsheba & Nathan go to David & obtain his agreement to crown Bathsheba’s son Solomon as king, according to David’s earlier promise, & the revolt of Adonijah is put down. David dies at the age of 70 after reigning 40 years, & on his deathbed counsels Solomon to walk in the ways of God
1170 – Deathday of Thomas Becket, Archbishop of Canterbury, assassinated inside Canterbury Cathedral by followers of King Henry II
1809 – Birthday of William Gladstone, Prime Minister of the United Kingdom
1835 – The Treaty of New Echota is signed by the United States, taking back all the lands of the Cherokee east of the Mississippi River. The ‘treaty’ was not approved by the Cherokee National Council nor signed by Principal Chief John Ross, & yet it became the legal basis for the forced removal known as the Trail of Tears
1890 – Wounded Knee Massacre on Pine Ridge Indian Reservation, 300 Lakota killed by the United States 7th Cavalry Regiment
1890 – Deathday of Spotted Elk (Lakota: OH-PONG-GE-LE-SKAH) highly renowned chief of the Miniconjou, Lakota Sioux. He was killed by the US Army at Wounded Knee Creek, Pine Ridge Indian Reservation South Dakota, with at least 250 members of his tribe
1926 – Deathday of Rainer Maria Rilke, a Bohemian-Austrian poet & novelist,
1972 – Eastern Air Lines Flight 401 crashes on approach to Miami International Airport, Florida, killing 101
1975 – Bomb Explodes at LaGuardia Airport in New York City, killing 111 people & injuring 74
1989 – Czech writer, philosopher & dissident Václav Havel is elected the first post-communist President of Czechoslovakia. Havel first rose to prominence within the Prague theater world as a playwright. He used the absurdist style to critique communism. After participating in Prague Spring & being blacklisted he became more politically active & helped found several dissident initiatives such as the Committee for the Defense of the Unjustly Prosecuted. His political activities brought him under the surveillance of the secret police & he spent multiple stints in prison, the longest being nearly four years. Havel’s Civic Forum party played a major role in the Velvet Revolution that toppled communism in Czechoslovakia in 1989. He assumed the presidency & was reelected in a landslide the following year. Havel was instrumental in dismantling the Warsaw Pact & expanding NATO membership eastward. He was very controversial, granting general amnesty to all those imprisoned under communism. Havel’s political philosophy was one of anti-consumerism, humanitarianism, environmentalism, civil activism, & direct democracy. He supported the Czech Green Party from 2004 until his death. He received numerous accolades during his lifetime including the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the Gandhi Peace Prize, the Philadelphia Liberty Medal, the Order of Canada, the Four Freedoms Award, the Ambassador of Conscience Award,& others. He is considered by some to be one of the most important intellectuals of the 20th century. The International airport in Prague was renamed to Václav Havel Airport Prague in 2012
1997 – Hong Kong begins to kill all the nation’s 1.25 million chickens to stop the spread of the potentially deadly ‘bird flu’.
1998 – Leaders of the Khmer Rouge apologize for the 1970s genocide in Cambodia that claimed over one million lives
6th Holy Night: Constellation of Libra, Scales (ruling the kidneys & lumbar region) The Sphere of the Dynamis, Spirits of Movement, Virtues or Mights
In Libra we come to the center of the Zodiac, the balance between the below -the lower signs which we have just traversed, considered the ‘dark signs’ where humanity still needs work; & the above – the upper zodiac, referred to as the ascended signs, where we are headed in our evolution.
From the Sphere of the Dynamis, the Spirits of Movement, dwelling in the Sun, bring the entire solar system into a state of mutual equilibrium. The reciprocal balance of the individual planets under their guidance finds a living expression in what Pythagoras called the ‘Music of the Spheres’, which reigns in the cosmos. On Earth they work from the periphery to balance the forces of the Thrones raying out from the center of the Earth, giving us such beautifully diverse landscapes.
These forces began to manifest on Old Moon, when the job of the Sprits of Movement was to bring a right relationship to the bodies of the Sun & Moon, which had separated from each other, creating a position in the cosmos that resembled a giant pair of scales needing to be balanced.
When The Christ Being made his descent thru the Constellation of the Scales, the 3rd pre-earthly deed was accomplished, counteracting the threat in the thinking life, to redeem the human astral body (thinking, feeling, & willing). If Christ had not sacrificed his own perfected Astral Body or Spirit-Self, uniting once again with the Nathan Soul, the human Ego would not have been able to come thru, & a balance between these 3 soul forces would have been broken, creating a separation into 3 races of human being: Thinking would have manifested in a type of Eagle-human; Feeling into a Lion-type; & Willing in a Bull-like human; creating in the astral body a dragon-like nature.
This sacrifice made it possible for the Dynamis to advance, evolving upwards into the ascending aspect of the Zodiac. Humanity will also advance when we take our thinking to the next level, in freedom. This is possible when we open to the opportunities availed us thru the Christ-Impulse, the work of Michael, our current Time Spirit, & our connection to Anthroposophia.
Today as I endeavor to stand in balance with my thinking, I am indebted to our devoted community of Anthroposohers, brought together thru our beloved teacher Dr. Rudolf Steiner. Let us seek to bring the highest evolution to bear.
Virtue: Contentment Becomes Self-Composure