In My Father's House
In my father’s house there were many gods—ancient ones, eternally joined with the stars that have called to me all my life. The beliefs Dad shared with me made me light up inside like a pinball machine.
They forever trumped my mother’s “churched-ness” which to me was filled with dreary hymns, hard pews, and rummage sales she always seemed to be in charge of. Trying to explain how God was connected to Jesus, to the Holy Ghost, that heaven was somehow “up” and hell “down,” that the natural world (so beautiful to me) was a perpetual moral minefield, and how we humans fit in that picture –well, it never worked for me. Still doesn’t. (Although I must note that many years later, for a brief period, I came to know the deep and true efficacy of the Eucharist—and it was the stars that brought me to that. But that is a story for another time.)
Touched by godsDad sewed it all up for me in one sentence: “The stars are the ceiling of our world and the floor of the gods.” This I understood. I could see and feel its truth.
Punctuated by countless hours of star gazing, accompanied by his mesmerizing stories of the myths of the glittering pictures in the night sky, the gods came alive for me. At our earliest introductions I could feel their presence as they rode their ancient chariots and lightning bolts into our home and established permanent residence in my consciousness. They lived “upstairs,” not only under my family’s roof but under the same shared roof in a universal home.
We are close, the stars, the gods and I. Yet, as a child, sometimes I’d look up at the night sky and feel overwhelmed by the physical distance of the stars from me, and they from each other. One night when I was quite young, Dad and I were looking up at the Milky Way– the skies have to be particularly clear to see it. It looked as if it were on the farthest side of the heavens.
I was stunned when Dad told me we–all of us in this solar system–are part of the Milky way. I found this overwhelming to contemplate. How could something that felt so close inside me be that far away? Thus began my life-long journey to discover our true proximity to each other—the stars and us.
As it turns out the Bible was right when it says we’re made of dust. Well, almost right but missing key adjectives. Science has demonstrated that it’s cosmic dust, star dust that’s the dust of creation that manifests galaxies, solar systems, planets and all life on them—including us. “Ashes to ashes, dust to dust” is more of a scientific truth than we are made aware of in Sunday school. so the old saying is true: closer than hands and feet. It is our evolutionary path. As one part of our universe explodes or decays, the particulate matter is the stuff of new creations.
So we are connected, the stars and us.
However, it is astrology that truly bridged the distance between me and the stars. What I have become increasingly enchanted with is that astrology is our house of stars, as close as the paper or computer monitor the astrological charts appear on. It shows me that the stars and planets calculated and placed within the astrological chart symbolically represent my body, my being, my environment, my talents, everyone in my life (past and present), my fears, my dreams and hopes, and my calendar and clock.
Astrology provides tools with which we can bridge our unseen and seen worlds, along with the timing and environments in which something yet unseen knocks at the doors of our consciousness notifying us something new seeks to be brought into our known worlds.
From now on, I will be incorporating a few more postings in this blog on this broader theme. Strap in. We’re going on a journey!