Some Thoughts on Capricorn

As Above, So Below:

The arrow of the Sagittarian Archer prepares the seeker for the ascent to the summit of the mountain top of initiation in Capricorn. To navigate this journey, clarity of purpose and a keen sense of direction are needed, for the bypaths are many and at every stage it’s easy to lose one’s way. But the testimony of those who have completed the journey is that the perils of the ascent are worth risking no less than absolutely everything in order to reach the summit. Why, then, at that moment of great achievement, does the aspirant in Capricorn declare Lost am I in light supernal, yet on that light I turn my back?

It shouldn’t come as a surprise that Alice Bailey described Capricorn as the most mysterious sign of all the twelve. The complexity of Capricorn is indicated by its close link to the mineral kingdom, the densest of all the planes of manifestation, yet at the same time Capricorn is a sign symbolized by the mountain top of initiation culminating in the liberation from matter. The only way to reconcile these two apparently contradictory aspects is demonstrated by the seeker who “faces two ways and each way sees the same vision.” Another insight offered by this perspective is that in spiritual striving, the vertical aspect must become horizontal; aspiration expressed through the life of the spirit has to manifest through relationship—anchored on the plane of earthly living.

Relationship, Alice Bailey wrote, is the basic pattern of evolution. Beginning with a developing sense of relationship to our fellow human beings, and extending in wider and wider arcs to include the other kingdoms of our planet above and below the level of human experience, the circle of relationship gradually must expand to include more and more of the whole. In developing this capacity, two factors emerge along the way: the realization that one is but a link to a larger whole, and that one has responsibilities as a human being within this ever-expanding field of relationships.

In pondering on the implications of this, it becomes clear how crucial the role of humanity is in the health of the planetary environment: in the interdependency of all the kingdoms with which we share the Earth—animal, vegetable, and mineral as well as human. Today, so self-centered has humankind’s relationship to the Earth become, or perhaps more correctly its lack of relationship, that we as a species are now confronted with an environmental crisis manifesting in climate change so urgent that we can ignore it only at our peril.

For modern spiritual seekers, the ancient emphasis on developing the relation of the individual to the soul, the light within, and to the Master no longer suffices. Now the sense of relation must develop through the expansion of consciousness, Alice Bailey tells us, “upwards into kingdoms hitherto unseen and unknown, downwards into kingdoms which we call subhuman, outwards into the human environment and into the human kingdom, and inwards [a meaningless word, she said] towards divinity itself. This means towards synthesis, towards wholeness, towards the sense of the entire, towards totality”, she concluded.

Expansion and inclusiveness are central themes of Capricorn, as was hinted in the Hermetic axiom “As Above, So Below”. The seeker’s focus must become multi-dimensional—multi-directional—if Capricorn’s keynote is to be realized: Lost am I in light supernal, yet on that light I turn my back. Our meditation is an opportunity to ponder on how these ideas illumine humanity’s role in the unfolding plan for our world.



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