The Cosmological Letter
This letter was left for The Kenwood Press by Paracelsus Magnus, an itinerant 16th-century European physician and scholar who passes through our valley four times a year. His letters appear in The Kenwood Press quarterly, just before each station of the solar year at solstice and equinox, and are intended to inform us about the season that lies ahead. This first letter is for the coming spring, which begins Saturday, March 20, at 2:37 in the morning.
To my good friends in the Valley of the Moon, greetings: This is to advise you that early Saturday morning, March 20, the Sun will cross the Equator, bringing us to the Vernal Equinox with all its warmth and light, and will at last make history of that long, hard winter just past. Thus, our astrological year begins as the Sun enters the first sign of the zodiac, Aries, for which event the Sabian Symbol reads: A Woman has risen from the Water; a Seal has emerged also, and is embracing her.
And so we emerge from a dark winter season, and from a realm known among the folk of Scotland as that of the shape-shifting selkie whom courageous mortals have always attempted to catch and hold, in order to know the mysteries of the deep. That all the planets of this spring’s horoscope lurk below the horizon tells us that still waters will run deep throughout the coming season, and that we must be attentive to the slightest of signs in order to recognize the greatest of opportunities, and to be courageous, which means to come from the heart.
Here are the events of the season to be marked, if we be wise: Sunday, March 28: The full moon in March is known as the Worm Moon; earthworms stir themselves and emerge from the soil, which is thus ploughed and made ready for planting. This would be the day to churn the debris left behind by winter, which word we shall not again employ in this letter, into food for new life as it returns. It is a day to attend to the vigorous enterprises of spring. Be outdoors in the meadows and the woods.
Sunday, April 11: The Solar transit of the Imum Coeli illumines the depths; to begin to know where you are going, you must first be certain of where you are. Look to your stance and attitude, and consider things thoughtfully and patiently, so that you may begin to see how and why these things take place, and where it is that you may go.
Wednesday, April 21: During this night, the Lyrid meteor shower scatters itself across the sky from the constellation Lyra, the Harp, from a place near its brightest star, Vega. This would be a night for listening for the music of the spheres, and a time for hearing a natural harmony with acceptance and gratitude.
Tuesday, April 27: The full moon in April is known as the Pink Moon, for all the pink blossoms and flowers that now bloom. This is the flowering of the year, a time to display appetite and ambition with discipline and ardor. Some say this is a supermoon, since it is closer to the earth than usual and for that reason bigger and brighter than before. Demonstrate your aspirations proudly.
Thursday, April 29: Today marks the Solar transit of the planet Uranus, in the Fourth House. Events may shock us awake, but we must awaken to ourselves especially. We become responsible when we rediscover respect for what makes each one of us, and every other thing we see, unique. We must reconsider and adjust our expectations and intentions accordingly.
Wednesday, May 5: The meteor shower called the Aquarids falls in the early morning sky to the east. It comes from the constellation Aquarius, a group of stars not to be confused with the sign of the seasonal zodiac. This is a sparse shower, maybe ten in the hour, but the patient, watchful observer will see long, glorious, glowing trains left behind. The admonition then is to have patience, for which the reward is—patience. Thursday, May 27: The Moon is totally eclipsed by the shadow of the earth at 12:54 a.m. this day. It is regarded as a Supermoon, a Blood Moon for its lusty red color, and a Flower Moon for the flowering of life that takes place with the warmth and moisture of spring. This Moon is at its South Node in the Twelfth House of Solitude, while the Sun is at the North Node in the Sixth House of Service, and so our personal desires should be set aside for the incubation of a greater, eventual satisfaction.
Saturday, May 29: Today Mercury becomes retrograde; it now begins stumbling back through Gemini for several weeks, until June 22nd. Gemini can be careless and easily distracted, so this is a time to be attentive, not only to the world around you but more importantly to the world within you. Pay attention to what you truly feel and think, rather than to the emotions and thoughts that otherwise merely occur to you. In this way your mistakes may become discoveries.
Monday, May 31: The Sun transits Mars this day in the Sixth House. Great effort and energy is put into the mundane tasks and chores of daily life with diligent lucidity, not with a sense of obligation but rather with zeal. This also takes place in Gemini, so careful thought is called for rather than indulgence in compulsive, confrontational opinions.
Friday, June 4: Now the Sun comes to the North Node of the Moon, so rather than troubling ourselves to understand what brought about the events of life, we are reminded to look for their purpose. Contentment will come from understanding the usefulness of things, and doing what can be done with them. Monday, June 7: Here the Sun comes to the Moon of this spring’s horoscope, presenting the fundamental charge of responsible service to the community. The Sabian Symbol for this event is the head of a handsome, youthful athlete, which slowly changes into a different type of beauty, the Mature Thinker. Thus, we are reminded that pursuit of a disciplined regimen, conditioning the mind and the body, is for the express purpose of finding pleasure in our place in the world. Thursday, June 10: Today brings us another eclipse as the New Moon this time slips between us and the Sun in Gemini, in the Sixth House.
Because the eclipse occurs at 3:42 a.m., it will not be seen in your valley, but its influence will be sensed by those easily overwhelmed by their emotions, for as the Moon eclipses the Sun, so feelings can overwhelm thought. For this reason, attend to your preparation the evening before, making certain your mind is calm and resolved as it submits itself to a gentle sleep.
Sunday, June 20: Early in the evening, at 8:32 p.m., the Sun comes farthest north in its journey. We are brought to the Summer Solstice, and the end of spring. At that time, I will return from my travels abroad to bring your next Cosmological Letter with news of the following season, and further admonitions meant, if they be accepted, for your benefit.
Signed, Paracelsus Magnus, Doctor