29 September 2017– Astro-Weather: As the stars come out in late twilight, look high above the Moon for Altai, the eagle.. Once the sky is dark, examine the sky upper left of Altair for dim little Delphinus, the Dolphin, about a fist at arm’s length from it. A little less far straight above Altair is the smaller, dimmer constellation Sagitta, the Arrow.
Although autumn arrived with the equinox a week ago, the Summer Triangle remains prominent in the evening sky. Look high in the west after darkness falls & your eyes will fall on the brilliant star Vega in the constellation Lyra the Harp. Vega is the brightest member of the Triangle. The second-brightest star, Altair in Aquila the Eagle, lies southeast of Vega. The asterism’s dimmest member, Deneb in Cygnus the Swan, stands east-northeast of Vega.
“History doesn’t repeat itself, but it does rhyme.” ~Mark Twain
ON THIS DAY IN HISTORY
The Feast Day of St. Michael & All the Heavenly Hosts, also called MICHAELMAS
1227 – Frederick II, Holy Roman Emperor, is excommunicated by Pope Gregory IX for his failure to participate in the Crusades. A man of extraordinary culture, energy, & ability Frederick II was called stupor mundi (the wonder of the world), by Nietzsche, also the first European, the first modern ruler – by many historians, Frederick established in Sicily & southern Italy a modern, centrally governed kingdom with an efficient bureaucracy.
He was a King of Germany, of Italy, & Burgundy. His other royal title was King of Jerusalem by virtue of marriage & his connection with the Sixth Crusade.
He was frequently at war with the Papacy, hemmed in between Frederick’s lands in northern Italy & his Kingdom of Sicily (the Regno) to the south. Pope Gregory IX went so far as to call him an Antichrist.
Speaking six languages (Latin, Sicilian, German, French, Greek & Arabic, Frederick was an avid patron of science & the arts. He played a major role in promoting literature through the Sicilian School of poetry. His Sicilian royal court in Palermo, saw the first use of a literary form of an Italo-Romance language, Sicilian. The poetry that emanated from the school had a significant influence on literature & on what was to become the modern Italian language.
He was also the first king who explicitly outlawed trials by ordeal as they were considered irrational.
1571 – Birthday of Caravaggio, Italian painter
1717 – An earthquake strikes Antigua Guatemala, destroying much of the city’s architecture & making authorities consider moving the capital to a different city
1812- Birthday of Caspar Hauser, grown up in the total isolation of a darkened cell. Theories link him with the grand ducal House of BadenThese claims, & his subsequent death by stabbing, sparked much debate & controversy.
“…It was the case of that human being, so enigmatic for many people, who was once placed into this city in a mysterious way, and who in just as mysterious a way met his death in Ansbach. An author, in order to indicate the mystery of his life, wrote that as he was carried out to burial the sun was setting on the one horizon and the moon was rising on the other. I speak, as you know, of Caspar Hauser. If you disregard all the pros and cons that have been asserted, if you look only at what has been fully verified, you will know that this foundling — who was one day simply there in the street, and who since he did not know whence he came, was called the Child of Europe — could neither read nor write when he was found. At an age of twenty years he possessed nothing of what is gained through the intellect but he had a remarkable memory. As they began to instruct him, as logic entered his soul, his memory disappeared. This transition in consciousness was accompanied by something else. He possessed at first an incredible, an entirely inborn truthfulness and it was precisely in this truthfulness that he went more and more astray. The more he nibbled, so to say, at intellectuality, the more it vanished. There would be many things to study were we to enter deeply into this human soul which had been artificially held back. It is not difficult for the student of Spiritual Science to credit the popular tradition, so unacceptable to the learned people of to-day, which relates that while Caspar Hauser still knew nothing, while he still had no idea that there were beings besides himself of different form, he exercised a remarkable effect upon quite savage creatures. Savage animals humbled themselves and became mild, something streamed from him that made such beasts gentle, although they savagely attacked anyone else. We could in fact penetrate deeply into the soul of this remarkable personality, so enigmatic to many, and you would see how things that cannot be explained from ordinary life are led back through Spiritual Science to spiritual facts. Such facts cannot be learnt by speculation but only by spiritual observation, though they are comprehensible to an unbiased and logical thinking.
All this has only been said in order to show you that the modern consciousness has evolved from another, an age-old-state when man was not in direct touch with outer objects in the modern sense, but on the other hand was in connection with facts and beings of the spiritual world.” ~Rudolf Steiner, The Apocalypse of St. John, Spiritual Science — The Gospel — The Future of Mankind
1885 – The first public electric tramway in the world is opened in Blackpool, England
1902 – Deathday of Émile Zola a French novelist, playwright, journalist, the best-known practitioner of the literary school of naturalism, & an important contributor to the development of theatrical naturalism. He was a major figure in the political liberalization of France & in the exoneration of the falsely accused & convicted army officer Alfred Dreyfus, which is encapsulated in the renowned newspaper headline J’accuse. Zola was nominated for the first & second Nobel Prize in Literature in 1901 & 1902. His death from carbon monoxide poisoning is suspected to have been murder
1924 – Ludwig Polzer holds his 1st First Class Lesson
1954 – The convention establishing CERN (the European Organization for Nuclear Research) is signed
1957 – Twenty MCi of radioactive material is released in an explosion at the Soviet Mayak nuclear plant at Chelyabinsk
1981 – Deathday of Adolf Arenson, German composer & Anthroposopher. Arenson editied many of Rudolf Steiner’s works, & composed the music for many of the plays & productions. Steiner mentions him at the end of Wonders of the World lecture 1
2008 – Following the bankruptcies of Lehman Brothers & Washington Mutual, The Dow Jones Industrial Average falls 777.68 points, the largest single-day point loss in its history
2009 – The 8.1 Mw Samoa earthquake strikes with a maximum Mercalli intensity. A destructive tsunami follows, leaving 1189 dead & hundreds injured.
POD (Poem Of the Day)
As the Michaelmas Feast
Pulls the Afternoon Sun into a Blinding Shaft
– The Drawn Sword of Michael
On the Oblique Angle of the Sun
Casting a long Shadow
That Stretches to the Western Horizon
In Silent Admonition
Thru Strident Free Discernment
Revealing the Revelation
In the Spirit-Light of Thought
Human consciousness is ever evolving. The Zeitgeist is flavored by the various attributes of the 7 Archangels who take turns ruling a portion of the epoch. In 1879 Michael became the Time Spirit of our age. When he was last up, he ruled the Hebrew folk as they were preparing the vessel for the Christ Being to enter a human form. Back then he held the countenance of Jehovah, the god of the Hebrew people.
At the ‘Turning point of Time’ Michael got a promotion to become an Archai & took on the countenance of The Christ.
In 1899 the Kali Yuga ended & the gates to the spiritual world were opened once again. Around that time, at the end of the 19th century, the fixed date of September 29th came to be called: The Feast Day of St. Michael & All the Heavenly Hosts. The old legends would always preface the famous story of the battle against the dragon, with an enumeration of the 9 angelic realms, with Michael standing before us as the King & herald of all the hierarchies.
And so as we strive to create the festival of the future, which we call Michaelmas, we are invited to stand in balance between the light & the dark, around this time of the equinox, to look back to the fruits of the past, & to prepare by looking to what is coming toward us from the future.
To look where we have been & to where we are going. To contemplate the angelic choirs – that we may look to our future selves – that we may think, here & now, that step by step, we can courageously build our own strong & steady rung on the ladder of evolution, teaching us to count the human being as the 10th hierarchy. It is to this that the mighty sun-being Michael directs our gaze; which we must in turn direct to the world of nature – Replacing dead sense-bound thinking, represented by the Dragon, with Imaginative Cognition, (to reclaim the Cosmic intelligence) living heart-thinking, fostered by Michael, to reveal the Living Christ, as the fundamental force of the Universe.
May Michael fortify our “I” & strengthen our Will, giving us the courage to find the Spirit behind the living Cosmos.
Michaelmas & the Horn of Plenty: Fall Festivals Ancient & New
Come join our Experiential Workshop celebrating the Autumnal Equinox to prepare us for the journey into the dark of the year. We will look back to the fruits of the past, & prepare for what is coming toward us from the future. Our ancestors called this Sabbath – Harvest Home or Mabon. The Hebrew folk count this as part of the High Holy Days. In Greece & Rome it is dedicated to The Eleusinian Mysteries of Demeter & Persephone. Today, we are invited to stand with the powerful Archangel Micha-el, in balance, between the light & the dark, as we create the ‘festival of the future’, which we call ‘Michaelmas’. Forging confidence through Heart-Thinking, Michael strengthens our Will & reinforces our higher “I” so that we have the Courage to find the Spirit behind the living cosmos.
10:30am –The Eleusinian Mysteries, Art & Mythos
11 – Group Eurythmy with special guest Mary Ruud – ‘Song of Proserpine’ by Percy Shelley
11:20 – Break
11:40 – The High Holy Days – ‘Atonement’ & a Sweet New Year
12pm – Ho‘oponopono an artistic Forgiveness Exercise
12:30 – 1:30 Picnic Lunch
1:30 – ‘Mabon’ Harvest Home Fest
1:45 – Circle of Intuition: Questions as we go into the Dark of the Year
2:15 – Break
2:30 –Michaelmas, The festival of the future NOW, Art & Leading Thoughts
3:30 – Iron Rod Eurythmy with special guest Mary Ruud
4 – Open Conversation – 4:30 pm – Close
Hazel Archer-Ginsberg – is a Spiritual Midwife, and Trans-denominational Minister, working in an eclectic style that inspires connections – initiating us into the magic, waiting to be revealed, in the cycle of the seasons. Festivals Coordinator & Council Member of the Chicago Rudolf Steiner Branch, and the Central Regional Council of the Anthroposophical Society. Founder of Reverse Ritual – Understanding Anthroposophy Through the Rhythms of the Year