25 June 2017 – Astro-Weather: Look high in the northwest after darkness falls this month, & you’ll be greeted by the familiar sight of the Big Dipper. The Dipper is the most conspicuous asterism — a recognizable pattern of stars that doesn’t form a complete constellation shape — in the entire sky. It forms the body & tail of Ursa Major the Great Bear. Use the Pointers, the two stars at the end of the Dipper’s bowl, to find Polaris, which marks the end of the Little Dipper’s handle. On June evenings, the relatively faint stars of this dipper arc directly above Polaris.
By the time it’s fully dark this week, Altair the eagle is shining well up in the east. Helping to identify it is its little sidekick Tarazed (Gamma Aquilae), which the Chinese call the River Drum, a finger-width above it or to its upper left.
Look left of Altair, by hardly more than a fist width, for the compact little constellation Delphinus, the Dolphin.
“Greek philosophy beautifully compared the human soul with a bee. The world of colour and light offers the soul honey which it brings with it into the higher world. The soul must spiritualize sense experience and carry it up into higher worlds.” ~Rudolf Steiner 1906
ON THIS DAY IN HISTORY
1767 – Mexican Indians riot sending the Jesuit priests home
1767 – Deathday of Georg Philipp Telemann, a German Baroque composer & multi-instrumentalist. Almost completely self-taught in music, he became a composer against his family’s wishes. Telemann one of the most prolific in history, was considered by his contemporaries to be one of the leading German composers of the time—he was compared favorably both to his friend Johann Sebastian Bach, who made Telemann the godfather & namesake of his son & to George Frideric Handel. Telemann made an important link between the late Baroque & early Classical styles.
1822 – Deathday of E. T. A. Hoffmann, a Prussian Romantic author of fantasy & horror, a jurist, composer, music critic, draftsman & caricaturist. His stories form the basis of Jacques Offenbach’s famous opera The Tales of Hoffmann. He is also the author The Nutcracker of which the famous ballet is based.
1876 – Battle of the Little Bighorn & the death of Lieutenant Colonel George Armstrong Custer.
1900 – The Taoist monk Wang Yuanlu discovers the Dunhuang manuscripts, a cache of ancient texts that are of great historical & religious significance.
1910 – Igor Stravinsky’s ballet The Firebird is premiered in Paris
1924 – Beginning of the Curative Pedagogical Course by Rudolf Steiner in Dornach
1940 –France officially surrenders to Germany
1947 –The Diary of Anne Frank is published
1950 – The Korean War begins with the invasion of South Korea by North Korea
1978 – The rainbow flag representing gay pride is flown for the first time during the San Francisco Gay Freedom Day Parade
1991 – Croatia & Slovenia declare independence from Yugoslavia
POD (poem Of the Day)
~Stellar is the golden seed from which the corn arises,
Earthly is the Sun on the hill from which spirals day…
My body nourishes some unfolding time & purpose
My heart lifts like the Moon
& power quivers on the water…
I shine bronze & gold
& silver in the mirror of the unveiled Isis…
The fixed stars & the circling planets are glad…
Who is this John of St. John’s-Tide?
Studying Rudolf Steiner’s work on the Gospels, we gain profound insights that have the power to touch deep truths buried in the unconscious regions of our soul, regarding one of the most powerful personalities in the history of humankind. In the Gospel of St. John the Evangelist, right after the mighty description of the evolution of the cosmos, we read: “There came a man, send from God, his name was John.” (John 1.6.)
In the original Greek, Johannes, is made up of the vowels “E – O – Ah“, three very powerful Eurythmy gestures. The “E” represents the upright human being – one arm pointing toward heaven, the other grounding toward the earth; an admonition to be here now. The “O” is a round gesture of “inwardness”, an embracing of the soul. The “Ah” is an opening to heavenly revelation; both arms raised in a V, becoming a vessel that opens to heaven, a gesture of “vision”.
The Gospel of St. Luke describes the birth of John; how an angel appeared to the priest Zechariah, telling him, “your wife Elizabeth will bear you a son, & you shall call him John.” (Luke 1.13.) The angel also foretells the task of this being John: “… even from his mother’s womb will he be filled with the Holy Spirit. And he will turn many sons of Israel to the Lord their God again. He will be his forerunner and will pave his way, bearing within him the spirit and power of Elijah, to change men’s hearts so that fathers shall rediscover the meaning of childhood, and those who have become alienated from God shall find the meaning of Good again. So shall he make a well-prepared people ready for the Lord “(Luke 1.15-17.)
The birth of John takes place just after the height of Summer, on June 24th, framed by the births of the two Jesus children. On the one hand, the birth of the Matthew Jesus child on January 6th, with the visitation of the ‘three wise men from the East’, taking place in Bethlehem. And months later, we hear of the other birth, of the Luke Jesus child, on December 24th, with the heavenly revelation to the shepherds.
In another mystery, we see the spiritual body or angel of Gautama Buddha, which appears in the etheric-astral realm, first, in the meeting between Elizabeth, (just before John the Baptist is born), with Mary, the mother of Jesus (Luke 1.39-56.) & then also at the revelation to the shepherds (Luke 11.8-15.).
Rudolf Steiner tells us that the Gospel of St. Luke brings us a new form of Christ-centered Buddhism, expressing the kind of love & compassion, that can be understood by even the simplest souls. The connection of the Buddha to John the Baptist & his mysterious influence on Christianity can be seen throughout his incarnation.
John the Baptist’s sermon at the river Jordan shows how the teachings of Buddha come forward in a new form. – Just like the Buddha declared certain truths & warnings in his famous sermon at Benares some five hundred years before, so too did JB speak in a similar way. Buddha says: “Do not think, because you are a Brahman, you are able to advance …“, John changes this admonition to fit his time, saying: “Do not think, because you are children of Abraham …” Buddha gave the teaching of love & compassion – JB gave the parable of the man who has two coats, how we must share with those that have none. And just as the monks came to Buddha with questions, now the tax collectors & soldiers come to John the Baptist.
After his life as an ascetic, JB begins publicly preaching & baptizing. In the 5th Gospel, Steiner describes how JB was close to the community of the Essenes, as well as with his cousin, Jesus of Nazareth.
Yep there’s more tomorrow
Blessings and Peace ~Hazel Archer Ginsberg