Saturn is the planetary ruler of Capricorn. The Roman god Saturn, or Cronus to the Greeks, is associated with time. It is most fitting that as the Sun ingresses into cardinal earth sign Capricorn, the world is preparing to bid one year goodbye and begin anew. At this time of year, we ask ourselves what pieces of the past we wish to leave behind and what is worth salvaging and passing on to future generations.
Goddess Guidance: Rhea
In Greek mythology, Cronus governed time. Rhea was his consort, and their children became the Olympian gods and goddesses. Cronus received a prophecy that one day one of his offspring would overthrow him and become the ruler of the gods. He was mad with jealousy! To prevent the prophecy from coming to fruition, he even ate his children!
Rhea was devastated by the loss of her children at their own father’s hands. She realized she was again pregnant and vowed not to let her husband kill her baby. When the child Zeus was born, clever Rhea wrapped a stone in a swaddling blanket, gave it to Cronus who believed it to be the infant, and fled to Crete where she gave the baby to the nymph Amathaea who nursed and protected him as her own. When Zeus grew up, he led a revolt against his father, rescued his mother and siblings, and established a new era as king of the gods.
Rhea teaches us how to live in such a way that history will remember us kindly. It is a difficult task to face, confront, and eventually let go of personal and collective mistakes. We may be criticized, or even threatened, by those we love who cling to outdated ways of being. They do not understand, nor are they ready to help midwife, a new way of being in this world. And yet, because of her bravery, Rhea gave the greatest gift to her children: a future.
It is the task for older generations to do the work of examining what good they have contributed to the world and wish to pass on to future generations, and what difficult lessons they have experienced that they hope no generation will have to face again. Likewise, newer generations must consider their elders with a discerning yet compassionate eye, excavate their experiences for hard-learned gems, and let go all that hinders us on our journey towards bringing about a more just, loving world.
Questions for reflection…
· Consider the generation you most closely identify with… What do you wish to pass on to future generations?
· What hard-learned lessons from your generation do you hope future generations do not have to repeat?
· What about up-coming generations gives you hope?