Featured image: Detail of Astrology Manuscript, ink on silk, BCE 2th century, Han, unearthed from Mawangdui tomb 3rd, Chansha, Hunan Province, China. Hunan Province Museum by Unknown author – China Arts, Volume 1st, Wen Wu Publishing, Beijing, China, 1979-10, Public Domain, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=19264187
Philip Jamieson and Marianne Schmidt
In the last weeks of 2020 the Sydney Dance Company performed Indian-Australian Raghav Handa’s Cult of the Titans, a work exploring the Nazi appropriation of the swastika from Hindu culture. The Company was so concerned at the depth of animosity in the community towards the symbol that it provided a content warning that the work contained swastika images and invited concerned audience members to leave if they wished. In a video introduction, Handa explained his piece as an attempt to reclaim from its horrific association with Nazism the Swastika’s ancient symbolism in Hinduism of light and peace.
While this positive symbolism in Hinduism is indeed millenia old, the origins of the swastika are actually far more ancient and its original meaning still the subject of much speculation. While long found in Eastern religions such as Hinduism, Buddhism and Jainism, its use is also found in many ancient cultures around the world, in some cases dating from the Neolithic and even late Paleolithic Periods. The earliest known example, excavated at an Ice Age site at Mezin in the Ukraine and dating from at least 12,000 years ago (in some accounts 15,000 years old and possibly even older), is a bird figurine carved from mammoth ivory tusk, its torso displaying what Mukti Jain Campion has elegantly described as “an intricate meander pattern of joined-up swastikas”. Photos of the figurine can be seen in her article at https://www.bbc.com/news/magazine-29644591.
So what might this swastika imagery have been intended to represent in antiquity? Continue reading “Footprint of Comet Encke?” →
Featured image is of the Butterfly Nebula by NASA, ESA and the Hubble SM4 ERO Team – http://www.hubblesite.org/newscenter/archive/releases/2009/25/image/f/, Public Domain, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=7777740
Marianne Schmidt and Philip Jamieson
Earlier this year, we attended the Cosmic Conciousness Conference at Uluru. There we had the opportunity on 12 January to experience at this sacred site a rare Saturn/Pluto conjunct and, indeed, the more rare for the fact that their conjunction was in Capricorn, something that had not occurred in more than 500 years.
Pluto and Saturn are two of the most feared planets in astrology. Pluto is a force of transformation and Saturn a force of responsibility, restriction and limitation, representing authority and structures like government and rules. So when they meet up in Capricorn, which rules governments, corporations and the economy, we can expect a tumultuous shakeup of antiquated global structures and institutions. When in 1518, Pluto and Saturn last met in Capricorn we saw the burgeoning of both the African slave trade (actions taken by Charles 1 of Spain in August 1518 resulted in a nearly 10 fold increase in the numbers of transatlantic slaves) and the Reformation movement (Martin Luther’s Ninety-five Theses spread swiftly after their translation from Latin into German in January 1518). Now again, 500 years later, during the period of this astrologically significant conjunction, half of global humanity sits in various stages of lockdown around the world as we experience a viral pandemic, wreaking transformation across all aspects of our global institutions, economic structures and indeed our very way of life – we find ourselves restricted, largely confined to our homes, and with our economic and social lives in disarray.
Continue reading “Central Australian Dreaming Sparks a Glimmer of Hope at a Time of Global Crisis” →
Marianne Schmidt and Philip Jamieson
Featured image is of a meteor during the peak of the 2009 Leonid Meteor Shower, showing the meteor, afterglow, and wake as distinct components. Image and description by Navicore – Own work, CC BY 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=8736621
“[A] fiery devil ran down from the sun and made his home in the earth” Aboriginal elder in 1932 describing the Henbury meteorite crater field
Earlier this year, after attending the Cosmic Conciousness Conference in Uluru in Australia’s Central Desert Region, we had the opportunity to visit two very special sites in the area: the Henbury meteorite crater field and Gosses Bluff. Both are significant in the dreaming of the local Arrernte Aboriginal people. And to our mind in those dreaming stories is understanding and insight relevant as much for modern humanity as for the Arrernte peoples themselves. Continue reading “We are NOT Alone: Thoughts on Comets and Meteorites – Where Life Began?” →