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The Book That Shows That The World Cannot Be Properly Understood Through Just The Mind

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An in-depth review of the book Why Materialism Is Baloney by Bernardo Kastrup. The book is currently available for pre-order on Amazon, with its release slated for April 2014.

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Cover 72ppiThe “problem” with this marvelous book is that those among us who most need to confront its wisdom won’t have the openness to do so. And those with the openness to do so may not really require these explanations.

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Kastrup goes about as far as one can go to use language, concepts and metaphors to “prove” that the world cannot possibly be understood merely through the mind as something separately knowable and immanently material.

Those who read Collective Evolution already probably resonate with Eckhart Tolle’s famous lines, “life is not the opposite of death; birth is the opposite of death; Life has no opposite” or “the mind cannot know the mind.”

To those who run our planet and form the backbone of our “science” this makes no sense. But they’re the ones who need to read this book and better yet, let them argue against Kastrup who uses their own scientific method to thoroughly discredit the arrogant assumptions of much of science.

For this reason he had me on board on page 14:

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“The true underlying nature of reality – the inner workings of the computer running the game – is an issue of metaphysics; an issue of philosophy. It requires different methods to be properly assessed and understood. For as long as scientists like Stephen Hawking are allowed to make preposterous pseudo-philosophical pronouncements and not be either ignored or thoroughly ridiculed by the mainstream media – in exactly the same way that, say, a famous artist would be ridiculed or ignored for making pseudo-scientific statements – our culture will fail to understand the nature of our predicament.”

Kastrup would make a wonderful attorney or debater in a “courtroom of reality” by stating his case against the current scientific assumption:

“Materialism asserts that reality exists outside your mind in the form of assemblies of material particles occupying the framework of space-time. Even energy fields are imagined, in current physics, to be force-carrying material particles.  The existence of this material reality is supposed to be completely independent of your, or anyone else’s, subjective perception of it. Thus, even if there were no conscious beings observing reality, it would supposedly still go merrily on: the planets would still orbit the sun, the continents would still drift, volcanoes would still erupt, crystals would still form in the bowels of the Earth and so on. That there is such a thing as consciousness is, according to materialism, a product of chance configurations of matter, driven mechanically by the pressures of natural selection. We are supposedly an accident of probabilities.” (15)

The 800 lb. gorilla for science:

But when it comes to consciousness, nothing allows us to deduce the properties of subjective experience – the redness of red, the bitterness of regret, the warmth of fire – from the mass, momentum, spin, charge, or any other property of subatomic particles bouncing around in the brain. This is the hard problem of consciousness.  As a matter of fact, consciousness is a sore on the foot of materialism. The materialist understanding of the world would seem a lot more solid if there were no such a thing as subjective experience at all.”(17)

Here the author is echoing the concept that Deepak Chopra often puts forth as “qualia” –the subjective aspect of our experience that is not scientifically definable and yet we know it; a great example of this is when Peter Francis Dziubian says that you can read everything that has ever been written about wine and never know how wine tastes.

Eventually Kastrup builds a powerful case for non-locality of consciousness; again resonating with comments made by Dr.Daniel Siegel at the Wisdom 2.0 conference when he suggested (as a neuroscientist) that his studies in the brain and the apparent “nonexistence” of a coherent self has led him to the realization that there is “no reason the self should be bounded by our skin.  We are ‘not the body.’  The self is both me and we and ultimately a new, and perhaps third entity, a MWE.”

A blistering critique of scientist like Hawking:

“If it serves as consolation, notice that all worldviews, including materialism, entail analogous paradoxes when it comes to the ultimate origin of everything. Big Bang theory, for instance, carries this contradiction in another form: how did everything, in the form of a bang, come out of an absolute void? What was there to bang?  One is immediately confronted with the contradiction that, while there was nothing in the beginning, there had to be at least a potential, with certain properties and attributes, which could have led to a bang.”  (153)

One might snarkly add –“who was there to bang?” because a “what” and a “who” are both mental concepts and what Kastrup is pointing to here is the poverty of such linguistic attempts at understanding what is. Indeed the word “potential” is another tip-off because it harkens directly to Heisenberg’s revolutionary Uncertainty Principle but “where” can potential “exist” except as a mental property. Where is potential in nature aside from inside a sentient being’s intelligence?

When Kastrup starts to build his own theory, or speculates on aspects of “freewill” he may get on shaky ground, because now he is describing consciousness (or the “membrane”) in quasi-physical terms that may hold some value or truth but cannot be “proven.” Freewill, for example, flies in the face of recent neuroscience experiments and yet we can and have the feeling or experience of choice; even Eckhart Tolle talks about aspects of choice in his work –we can “choose” whether to accept a situation, try to change it, or leave the locale. But essentially freewill is just another concept that can only be experienced by trying to DO and whether there is a ME that is “free” can never fully be known outside of a loop or paradox.

Where I think Kastrup shines, however, is in pointing out the limitations of scientism from a scientific perspective –unmasking it as the emperor with no (empirical) clothes and opening the reader up to alternative concepts of the reality of nonlocalized intelligence and consciousness. To his credit, Kastrup (as a scientist) deals well with paradox –he doesn’t attempt to fight or explain it; he points it out as a necessary byproduct of our own mental limitations or a function of what is (we are not in a position to know which).

“A core idea of this book is the notion that localized segments of mind at large can become immersed in the illusion of being separate from the rest of the broader membrane. The illusion originates from the self-reflective amplification of certain mental contents to the detriment of others. The ego becomes blind to the broader membrane of mind, identifying itself solely.”  (191)

Here he again resonates with the premise of much of Eckhart Tolle’s work—the fact that there is a functioning logical entity within us with which we identify but that is not what we truly are by nature. Ego is known by consciousness when we awaken to our nature, but we are not our Ego, and if we seek to identify “what” or “who” is consciousness we miss –because it is nonmaterial – an “empty” loop of subjectivity.

Kastrup also makes his points mainly with metaphors and analogies. One of the most evocative is that of the body as a partial “echo” of consciousness (vibration) like a tuning fork.

Here he has a striking insight relative to the sacred science of Egypt –or mummification –when he writes:

“The living body is not a mere habitation of the soul, but a true – albeit partial – image of the conscious entity. It is not an artificial shell, or a distorting barrier concealing and cloaking an inner entity, but the authentic way in which the conscious entity manifests in consensus reality. As such, it is not invalid to think of a person according to her body image: the body image is as honest to the conscious entity as flames are honest to combustion. However, it is ludicrous to think of the body image as the complete story about a person, in the same way that is incorrect to think that flames are all there is to combustion.”  (178)

Another powerful image that Kastrup uses is the whirlpool with respect to the “relationship” between the “individual” and consciousness –similar to the wave as part of the ocean; but in the case of a whirlpool you have the added dimensions of depth and continuity and perhaps most interesting to me –the whirlpool on a massive scale actually exists as the center of our galaxy as a black hole –literally annihilating all matter and time into a vortex of –what? Mind?

Kastrup says:

“The body image, of course, compounds the illusion. The body is simply an image in mind of a process of localization of mind, just like a whirlpool is an image in water of a process of localization of water. The body doesn’t  imply anything other than mind and its movements, in exactly the same way that a whirlpool doesn’t  imply anything other than water and its movements.”

When you then consider the image of a tuning fork, and the faint residue or “partial image” of the original vibration and how it seems to continue well beyond our capacity to sense or “hear” it, it speaks to an entirely different concept of energy and nature itself.  When one considers also that even astrophysicists have discovered the cosmic “background” static of the Big Bang itself as “evidence” –the implications are staggering.

spectrum

From Dr. Jay Kumar’s presentation at SAND.

Kastrup makes the point made by Aldous Huxley in Doors of Perception that essentially our brains are “filters” of consciousness, so that if everything (all vibration in the universe) were known we would be overwhelmed; hence our filtered view of reality (by consensus) is extremely limited.  This filtering mechanism is actually the Ego, which connects to Kastrup’s suggestion about death; while he admits with the usual humility that obviously no one knows –he says:

“The mental process we call physical death ‘makes the unconscious more conscious’  because it eliminates a source of obfuscation; namely, the egoic loop.” (182) In other words it “literally” removes the filter that temporarily (while “alive”) allowed the ego to think it was a “Self.”

Kastrup goes on to describe the many ways this view of the ego and consciousness “explains” much of what we know about “primitive” cultures and their nonfiltered awareness of nature.

And here is his elegant explanation of “freewill”:

“Freewill is a property of mind at large. It is distributed uniformly throughout the membrane [Kastrup’s metaphor for One Consciousness]. However, because of self-reflective amplification [Ego loop], we identify ourselves only with a very small part of mind. Only the freewill at work within this small field of amplification is recognized by the ego as its own will. The force – the primary cause – that puts the rest of the membrane of mind in motion is seen by the ego as foreign and utterly outside its control.”

This realization and its impending death (of the Ego) is likely what Gurdjieff called “the terror of the situation” and we often call the “void” – which can be both a source of anxiety or, upon “awakening,” the beginning of exhilaration.

What is so appealing is that for all of the difficult reasoning and language, the author is very humble. He concludes:

“Do I believe that the way of thinking laid out in this book nails down the truth? Do I believe that my metaphysics is complete? Of course not. Such a belief would be of exceptional hubris and naïveté. What I do believe is that the worldview discussed here is a concrete and sound step forward when compared to the reigning paradigm. As I hope to have demonstrated, it explains all aspects of reality that materialism claims to explain, and then many more. As such, I’m absolutely convinced that my formulation of idealism is significantly closer to the truth than the madness of materialism.”

For all of his humility Kastrup is a brilliant writer; while some of his paragraphs are long and arduous they make for a compelling organic unity. Here is a sample summation:

“…when you close your garage door behind you in the evening, it’s clear that some process holds the pattern of things you leave behind in the garage – including your car – while you are asleep, since you can come back to that same pattern in the next morning. There is no denying this. But, because of the assumption of realism, materialists must then associate the pattern with a universe outside mind itself. Drop the assumption of realism and the original deduction leads to a completely different, and much more parsimonious, conclusion: the process that holds the pattern is a mental process that happens to transcend egoic awareness, in the same way that the mental processes responsible for generating dreams or schizophrenic visions also transcend the ego. That a pattern can be held – and even develop – independently of the ego does not mean that such pattern isn’t still purely mental. A whole phenomenological universe indeed unfolds outside the ego, but not outside mind. Such a trans-egoic universe is still an experience, but the experience of a broad, non-personal, non-self-reflective segment of mind.”

Paragraphs like this are not always easy to follow but if you do the work, they elegantly lay out a very comprehensive and viable notion of reality. Kastrup has laid out his case in a very compelling scientific style. For those who would like to follow this line, and for perhaps an equally deep discussion of scientism I would recommend Jacob Needleman’s “A Sense of the Cosmos.”

At this talk at SAND (Science and Nonduality) Kastrup defined himself (to the extent that he ever would) as a “skeptic” –which has a long tradition in philosophy but ultimately is another name for accepting not knowing.  That attitude alone makes this a book worth investigating.

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Autistic, Alzheimer’s & Multiple Sclerosis Brain Tissues Have Significant Amounts of Aluminum In Them

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CE Staff Writer 5 minute read

In Brief

  • The Facts:

    A 2020 study found that the aluminum content in brain tissue of people with Alzheimer's disease, familial Alzheimer's disease, autism spectrum disorder and multiple sclerosis is significantly higher compared to tissues used in the study as controls.

  • Reflect On:

    Could aluminum be playing a role in these, as well as other diseases? How does it get into our brain?

Before you begin...

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Take a moment and breathe. Place your hand over your chest area, near your heart. Breathe slowly into the area for about a minute, focusing on a sense of ease entering your mind and body. Click here to learn why we suggest this.

There is no shortage of studies demonstrating that aluminum is present in human brain tissue. This is a problem given the fact that aluminum is neurotoxic and wreaks nothing but havoc on biology. This is firmly established in scientific literature. There is no debate on whether or not aluminum exists within human brain tissue, the science is settled. The debate is now focused on how much aluminum is too much. How much aluminum does it take to impact the health of a human being in a negative way?

A study published in the journal Nature compared the aluminum content in human brain tissue of people with Alzheimer’s disease, familial Alzheimer’s disease, autism spectrum disorder and multiple sclerosis with healthy controls. According to the authors, “detailed statistical analyses showed that aluminum was significantly increased in each of these disease groups compared to control tissues.” They go on to mention that,

We have confirmed previous conclusions that the aluminum content of brain tissue in Alzheimer’s disease, autism spectrum disorder and multiple sclerosis is significantly elevated. Further research is required to understand the role played by high levels of aluminum in the aetiology of human neurodegenerative and neurodevelopmental disease.

The researchers used tissue from twenty control brains of healthy individuals to compare against the brain tissue of people who have had a diagnosis of the neurodegenerative conditions mentioned. The fact that all disease groups had significantly higher brain aluminum content than the control group is quite concerning. That being said, it’s not proof that aluminum actually plays a direct role in each of these diseases. The important takeaway from the study and what we know about aluminum toxicology is that there is absolutely no debate, at all, as to the neurotoxicity of aluminum in humans. It’s just not a good thing to have in your body.

The study emphasizes,

Animal models of aluminum intoxication reproduce the neuropathologies and neurodevelopmental effects of human neurodegenerative disease, if not the diseases per se. Cell models and in vitro studies demonstrate mechanisms of aluminum toxicity known to be involved in human neurodegenerative disease. Perhaps the information that is still missing from understanding of aluminum’s role in each of the diseases compared herein is how much aluminum is too much in human brain tissue. The comparison we have made herein between control brain tissue showing no signs of neurodegenerative disease and the disease groups…is beginning to answer this question. Only further measurements on more donor brains will enable a definitive conclusion to be reached on the role played by aluminum in human neurodegenerative disease.

The authors make it clear that aluminum and its presence in human brain tissue “cannot be without consequence” given everything that’s been discovered about aluminum toxicity. There is a great need for further study here and to determine how much aluminum the brain, and other organs for that matter, can tolerate before there are detrimental effects. These effects may be short term as well as long term, and they may play a role in neurodegenerative disease like the ones the study examine. It’s hard to think that the high aluminum content in the brain tissue of people with these diseases  is simply a coincidence, especially given the fact that the aluminum content in “normal” brains is significantly less.

Once you start to see these sort of data together, once you start to see the levels of a known neurotoxic metal accumulate to these levels, it is absolutely inevitable that they will contribute to disease. – Professor Christopher Exley, lead author of the study, taken from the interview below.

Exley is a Professor at Keele University, and arguably the world’s leading expert in aluminum toxicology. Exley and his work is supported by many scientists from around the world, yet he is facing a potential set back with regards to continuing his research on aluminum and disease. One hundred scientists came together and recently wrote a letter of support, stating,

We are writing to express our concern over the possible interruption of research on aluminum and disease conducted by Christopher Exley and his group in your (Keele) University. We feel that Christopher Exley’s work conducted for so many years in line with the previous research of late Pr Birchall at Keele University has been an important service to the scientific community, patients and society in Europe and globally. We firmly declare that Pr Exley has always defended rigorous research independent of commercial conflicts of interest, and has freely carried out his research without any control by any of his sponsors.

You can read more about what’s going on with regards to this situation, and access the correspondence that’s happened between Keele University (Exley’s employer), Exley, and the academics who support his work, here.

Below is a very informative interview with Exley if you’d like to learn more about aluminum and its accumulation within humans. On a side note, ask yourself, what products and substances may contain aluminum that could be contributing its accumulation in various human organs like the brain?

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Consciousness

Does Consciousness Create Our Material Reality?

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CE Staff Writer 7 minute read

In Brief

  • The Facts:

    A new study authored by Robert Lanza suggests observers" are responsible for determining physical reality, and that conscious observers themselves generate and create the structures of time and space.

  • Reflect On:

    We observers, people like you and I, are responsible for how consciousness forms into physical matter, what does this say about the power of our individual and collective beliefs?

Before you begin...

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Take a moment and breathe. Place your hand over your chest area, near your heart. Breathe slowly into the area for about a minute, focusing on a sense of ease entering your mind and body. Click here to learn why we suggest this.

Where does the “physical” world come from? Matter at its smallest observable form, atoms, pop in and out of existence all the time. The idea that physical matter is birthed from a non physical realm, such as the “quantum vacuum” or the “void”, or something else we are unaware of is not novel.  Nikola Tesla himself believed that “all perceptible matter comes from a primary substance, or tenuity beyond conception, filling all space, the akasha, or luminiferous ether, which is acted upon by the life-giving Prana or creative force, calling into existence, in never-ending cycles all things and phenomena.” (Man’s Greatest Achievement, 1907)

A paper published by Parahamsa Tewari in the journal Physics Essays explains,

“A century from now, it will be well known that: the vacuum of space which fills the universe is itself the real substratum of the universe; vacuum in a circulating state becomes matter; the electron is the fundamental particle of matter and is a vortex of vacuum with a vacuum-less void at the center and it is dynamically stable; the speed of light relative to vacuum is the maximum speed that nature has provided and is an inherent property of the vacuum; vacuum is a subtle fluid unknown in material media; vacuum is mass-less, continuous, non viscous, and incompressible and is responsible for all the properties of matter; and that vacuum has always existed and will exist forever….Then scientists, engineers and philosophers will bend their heads in shame knowing that modern science ignored the vacuum in our chase to discover reality for more than a century.”

This non-physical “field” may also be dark energy, we don’t really know or understand it quite well, but we know it exists. A declassified Defense Intelligence Agency document touches on this,

“We do not understand why it exists or how it is created; we simply know it provides an ever-present force on spacetime, causing the universe to expand. Indeed, recent high-precision experimental observations indicate dark energy may be a cosmological vacuum energy.”

So, if our material world is birthed from this non material “stuff”, does consciousness play a factor? It’s interesting to contemplate, especially given the fact that consciousness is not a physical thing, nor is it the result of any known physical process or biology. You cannot pinpoint or find the source of consciousness within the brain. Even at the quantum level, factors associated with consciousness have been known to change the behavior of matter, like photons, suggesting that matter itself may be a conscious perceiving thing.

Does this mean that all “physical” things possess some type of consciousness? Photons don’t have a brain, do they? What about plants? There is a growing amount of evidence suggesting that plants act and behave in ways suggesting that they are a thinking things, capable of feelings, emotions, perceptions and thoughts.

If consciousness can have such an influence over matter, and is a non physical property that exists within all physical things, could it somehow be responsible for the creation of reality? This has been a common theme discussed within the realms of quantum physics for quite some time. In fact, the discussion of “ether”, this non physical, indescribable “stuff” has been the subject of contemplation for thousands of years. Plato wrote about the ether  in his work Phaedo, and explained how life exists within it. He believed what air is to us, the ether is to them. Is the ether alive? Is the universe itself, which could be primarily made up of this non-physical stuff, a conscious living entity?

You cannot explain consciousness in terms of the existing fundamentals like space, time, mass,  and charge. As a result, the logical thing to do is postulate whether consciousness itself is something fundamental to the existence of reality, to view consciousness itself as one of these fundamentals.

“Why do you insist the universe is not a conscious intelligence, when it gives birth to conscious intelligences?” Cicero, c. 44 BCE 

A New Paper

Another paper has emerged claiming that “observers” are responsible for determining physical reality, and that conscious observers themselves generate and create the structures of time and space.

What’s interesting to contemplate here is that, if this is true, it would include all “observers” within the universe itself, not just human observers. It reminds me of the double slit experiment, where tiny bits of matter are shot through a slit forming what’s called a wave pattern of probabilities and possibilities, but when an observer is introduced the wave function collapses.

One of the authors of the paper, Robert Lanza, told Big Think that observers can dramatically affect the “behavior of observable quantities” both at a microscopic and massive spatiotemporal scales. In fact, a “profound shift in our ordinary everyday worldview” is necessary. The world is not something that is formed outside of us, simply existing on its own. “Observers ultimately define the structure of physical reality itself.”

How does this work? Lanza contends that a network of observers is necessary and is “inherent to the structure of reality.” As he explains, observers — you, me, and anyone else — live in a quantum gravitational universe and come up with “a globally agreed-upon cognitive model” of reality by exchanging information about the properties of spacetime. “For, once you measure something,” Lanza writes, “the wave of probability to measure the same value of the already probed physical quantity becomes ‘localized’ or simply ‘collapses.'” That’s how reality comes to be consistently real to us all. Once you keep measuring a quantity over and over, knowing the result of the first measurement, you will see the outcome to be the same

The implications of this are and have always been quite large. The idea that consciousness itself is fundamental to reality suggests that it must have played an integral part in the creation of reality, that consciousness itself had to exist prior to the birth of physical material reality. One could go on and on contemplating things like: if consciousness is fundamental to the creation of physical matter, then what created consciousness itself? Where does consciousness itself originate from? Does existence itself even have a beginning? Can the future change the past, can the past change the future?

Who knows, but the most important point to takeaway here is that consciousness itself is fundamental to the creation of our physical experience. If we want to change the world, ultimately we have to change the way we think, feel and perceive. This is a key factor that is directly intertwined with the type human experience we create for ourselves.

This is why, perhaps, sometimes it seems that the greatest resource for powerful people, politicians and corporations is human consciousness itself.  If we ourselves determine what direction humanity heads simply by what we think and feel, just imagine what somebody could do if they could manipulate that aspect within us? The state of the world today, some might say, is chaotic, and that could be a direct result of the fact that the collective mind and heart is not in a state of coherence.

You might say “we are all over the place.” We’re separated by our beliefs and unable to come together in understanding and harmony. This collective state of being in turn will create a physical experience that reflects that, which is exactly what we are seeing today and have seen throughout human history.

Below is a great little documentary from a colleague of mine, it’s based off an essay he wrote for his philosophy master’s degree. It dives a bit deeper into this discussion.

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Consciousness

‘Ring Of Fire’ Solar Eclipse In Gemini: A Shift In Mindset

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Take a moment and breathe. Place your hand over your chest area, near your heart. Breathe slowly into the area for about a minute, focusing on a sense of ease entering your mind and body. Click here to learn why we suggest this.

We are having a New Moon Solar Eclipse in Gemini on June 10th which peaks at 10:42am Universal Time. It will be an annular eclipse which is when the Moon almost completely blocks out the Sun with the exception of its outer edges. It appears like this because the Moon is near its apogee, which is its furthest distance from the Earth. This type of eclipse is also referred to as a ‘Ring of Fire’ due to it appearing this way.

The full annular eclipse will only be visible from parts of Northern Ontario (Canada), parts of Northern Quebec (Canada), parts of Nunavut (Canada) as well as Northwestern Greenland and a portion of Eastern Russia. It will be seen as a partial eclipse throughout most of Canada (with the exception of Southwestern part), the Northern half of Alaska, most of Eastern USA, parts of North Central USA, Greenland, most of Russia, most of Europe, and parts of Asia closer to Russia. However, from some of these locations the Sun will be barely eclipsed and with a shorter window to see it.

A Solar Eclipse is a much more significant type of New Moon which influences a longer term period then a regular one. This is when it occurs near the Lunar Nodes, which is where the path of the Sun and Moon intersect from our perspective on Earth. This happens every six months, along with Full Moon Lunar Eclipses happening prior or following. In this specific case we had a Lunar Eclipse in Sagittarius two weeks before this one. You can read more about that one here.

Both Solar and Lunar Eclipses reflect changes and shifts which affect the following six months and could also influence up to six weeks prior. You may or may not see the effects of it around the time it occurs, but you may feel it and then see it play out in the weeks or months afterwards.

Eclipses are always part of a series that occur in the same opposing signs for 1.5 to 2 years which is where the Lunar Nodes are for most of that period. The positions of the Eclipses and the Lunar Nodes reflect an evolutionary process in how we work with the energies of these signs and pertaining to the areas of our lives being affected (based on our astrological blueprint at the specific time of each of our birth). What results from a series of eclipses in the same signs over these approximately 1.5  to 2 year periods may have longer-term effects beyond the window in which they occur.

North Node Solar Eclipse In Gemini

The shifts reflected by this eclipse are connected to Gemini themes and areas of life, ultimately leading to a revision in how its energies are expressed. It is near the Lunar North Node which in many cases could also indicate changes that have an increasing effect on Gemini expressions.

This process is something that began a year ago and will play out until the end of the year. However, this energy will be the most prominent now, from late Spring to Early Summer. This is because it will be the only Solar Eclipse in Gemini (in this eclipse series) along with its ruler Mercury being retrograde here as well.

Gemini belongs to the Air element which is socially and intellectually oriented. As a Mercurial sign, it is associated with the mind, communication, information, words, writing, facts, curiosity, and commuting. Gemini energy is adaptable, dualistic, agile, versatile, rational, and quick witted yet can also be restless, scattered, duplicitous, overly talkative, and superficial.

Gemini correlates with our local/immediate environment, neighborhood, neighbors, siblings/cousins, communication devices/computers, childhood education, vehicles, and friends/acquaintances from earlier years. Gemini energy is also associated with LGBTQ+ matters as well the different expressions and orientations under that umbrella.

Solar Eclipse Conjunct Mercury Retrograde, Applying Square To Neptune

As mentioned above, Gemini’s ruler Mercury is also retrograde in its own sign of Gemini. What is very interesting is that the halfway point of this (three and a half week) retrograde process will occur hours after this eclipse. This is when Mercury is aligned with the Sun (and the Moon in this case), known as its ‘inferior conjunction’, and is a very significant period of the entire retrograde.

The ‘inferior conjunction’ is a time in which Mercury passes through the heart of the Sun  (from a geocentric perspective) and is symbolically seen as a ‘purification’. In our real world experience, it can be a time of ridding ourselves of certain thoughts, ideas, perceptions, old interests, expectations, or other things that are not serving us while the potential for new ones may be seeded. We may experience important insights that can contribute to this process. Although this technically occurs on June 10th/11th, these themes can also play out in the days surrounding this period.

Considering that this significant astronomical event is occurring in the hours following the eclipse, this can suggest that the Mercury retrograde effect of re-calibrating our minds and perception can also be a major part of a longer term astrological backdrop over this following six months that is under the influence of this eclipse. This is a rare occurrence to have both of these happening at the same time, and its even more rare and interesting that it is all happening in a sign that Mercury rules.

The Sun and Moon in this Solar Eclipse are also moving towards a square with Neptune in Pisces. This can add to the scattering and lack of focus reflective of Gemini and the Sagittarian energy of the previous Lunar eclipse in the same nodal polarity. This can also bring confusion, uncertainty, and deception.

Facts, details, and rational thinking can be in conflict with illusions, fantasy, escapism, and ideals. Issues around lack of boundaries may also be a theme over the coming months. This energy can be good for creative efforts that are mentally or communication oriented, or spiritual practices that involve air such as breathwork and meditation. Some of this can play out around June 13th/14th when the Sun makes an exact square with Neptune.

Saturn In Aquarius Square Uranus In Taurus

This month Saturn in Aquarius is currently in its 2nd exact square with Uranus in Taurus which I have mentioned in previous articles. This started in February when the first square occurred and is present all of this year and somewhat next year. This month, especially from June 8th-20th, will be one of the stronger periods of this energy especially when it peaks around June 14th/15th.

This reflects tension and challenges between Saturn and Uranus themes or expressions. Saturn is traditional, conservative, serious, rational, and cautious. It rules commitments, maturity, responsibilities, limitations, restrictions, the status quo, the established order,  and structures. It is about patience, practicality, discipline, and boundaries.

Uranus is freedom seeking, detached, revolutionary, radical, rebellious, progressive, reforming, idealistic, unconventional, inventive, innovative, futuristic, and scientific. It represents new technology, discoveries, surprises, disruptions, and separations.

This configuration can play out as ‘old versus new’, ‘restrictions versus freedom’, ‘the status quo versus revolution’, ‘commitments/responsibilities versus liberation’, ‘elder versus youth’, ‘progressiveness versus tradition’ and so forth. This can also be a time of integrating Saturn and Uranus such as applying new, technological, scientific, or metaphysical approaches to help us with our work.

In some cases we can express a certain mix of combined Saturn-Uranus themes and be at odds with a different mix of these energies. Depending on the variables, this can potentially lead to contradictions or hypocrisy.

Venus ‘Out Of Bounds’, Square Chiron & Sextile Uranus

Venus, the planet of love, relationships, friends, social life, values, money, beauty, art, and aesthetics, went ‘out of bounds’ on May 23/24th which will last until June 17th/18th. This when a planet moves outside of the boundaries in the sky which the Sun travels from our perspective on Earth. This is about exploring new territory as well as going outside of our usual limitations and conventional ways of doing things in regards to how we approach Venus areas of life. This can also reflect seeing things objectively and from a different perspective.

At the time of this eclipse, Venus in Cancer is moving towards a square with Chiron in Aries which will be exact on June 12th/13th. This can bring up wounds, blockages, negative patterns, or can reflect themes around healing, holistic perception, or perhaps solutions when it comes to love, friendships, pleasures, values, or monetary issues. In some cases these themes may be tied into family matters, security, or emotional needs being at odds with our individuality and personal needs.

Venus is also in a sextile with Uranus in Taurus which can bring a new, stimulating, unusual, exciting, inspiring, liberating, unexpected, or unique energy around our relations with others.  This can also reflect surprises, positive changes, or freeing type of developments around financial matters.

In some cases it can be good for exploring new ways of making money that can be innovative, online, metaphysical, or technologically oriented. This will be strongest on June 13th/14th but it’s possible that our experiences of both this Venus-Uranus configuration and the Venus-Chiron one mentioned above may be intertwined.

Things To Consider

Is there something that you need to shift when it comes to your mindset? Do any of your perceptions, thoughts, ideas, or approaches to communication need to be revised? What has been coming up for you that can be contributing to this process? Is there anything that you need to change or adjust when it comes to your relationship with neighbors, close friends, siblings, or extended family? Are your sources of information reliable, factual, and rational? Do you need to look at things more objectively?

These are just some examples of themes that could come up during this period and over the coming months; however, there may be other variations of this energy playing out as well.  This isn’t a time to necessarily set intentions but instead to embrace the evolutionary process that eclipses facilitate. It will peak and reach its maximum eclipse at 10:42am Universal Time on June 10th while it will begin and finish approximately two and a half hours before and after. The exact moment of the New Moon will be 10:53am Universal Time. You can click here to see when the peak is in your time zone.

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