Adele Barger Wilson


Alice Bailey: Portrait of Leo Rising
The Soul's Purpose Formula
Virgo: The Mother of the Harvest
Esoteric Meanings of the Rising Signs
Princess Diana and Mother Teresa: Portraits of Sagittarius Rising
Triadic Nature of the Sun's Energy
How the Soul of William Blake Spoke Through His Art
Esoteric Meaning of Scorpio Rising


copyright 1983, 1999 by Adele Barger Wilson

Alice Bailey's Soul's Purpose Formula
(see The Soul's Purpose Formula):

Leo ascending with Mars in Leo conjunct the ascendant, ruled by Sun in Gemini in the eleventh house with Venus and Vulcan in Gemini in the eleventh and Pluto in Taurus on its cusp, ruled by Vulcan in Gemini in the eleventh house.

         Born in 1880 in Manchester, England, to upper-class parents, Alice LaTrobe-Bateman led a childhood existence that was quite disciplined and regimented, yet free from material anxiety.  With the early death of both of her parents, she and her younger sister went to live with their grandparents, continuing their upper-class life. 
         As a child, Alice was temperamental, vain, vengeful, and somewhat prankish (Mars in Leo conjunct the ascendant).  Once, in anger at her governess, she stole her jewelry and flushed it down the toilet.  Upon secretly reading her governess's private journal the next day, Alice learned that her governess knew exactly who the thief was, but was going to wait until Alice took the initiative and confessed before she would do anything about it. Alice then went to her governess and confessed about both the stealing of the jewelry and the reading of the journal.  To Alice's surprise, her governess was much more outraged about the reading of the journal than about the disposal of the jewelry.  The shock of learning this was Alice's first lesson in material-versus-spiritual values, which would later prove to be an important factor in her soul work. 
         True to her Gemini Sun, Alice never resided in one place for very long, living in England, Canada, and Switzerland before she was nine years old.  After her grandfather died, she and her sister would spend half the year with her grandmother in London, and the other half with her aunt in Scotland.  In one country she attended the High Church, similar to Catholicism with its ceremony and ritual, while in the other she attended the Low Church, which was more like Protestantism with its vengeful God and hellfire punishment. Alice had found herself torn, in typical Gemini fashion, between two seemingly irreconcilable opposites. 
         Mars, which conjoins Alice Bailey's ascendant, is the ruler of Scorpio, where the personality battles the soul, and this battle was Bailey's "major life conflict".  As a child, she often hated herself and everyone else and felt as if life were worthless.  She attempted suicide three times between the ages of five and fifteen by such dramatic means as throwing herself down the stone kitchen steps, attempting to smother herself with sand, and trying to drown in the river.  With all of the drama of her Leo ascendant, her personality was engaged in striking out against the will of her soul to be in her physical body. 
         Alice's self-torture and unpleasantness continued until the age of fifteen when she was sitting in the drawing room one Sunday, with the rest of the family having gone to church.  A man dressed in European clothing and wearing a turban walked into the drawing room and sat down beside her.  He told her that she would eventually have the opportunity to do some important work in the world if she would change her disposition and gain some control over herself.  He promptly left, saying that he would be in touch with her again.  Alice then began to control her cross nature and sharp tongue to the extent that her family thought that she was ill because she had changed so much. 
         Having been raised as a devout Christian, Alice went to Ireland as a young adult to work in a soldiers' home where much of her duty was to lead gospel meetings and convert people who were not already "saved".  Speaking in front of a few hundred soldiers terrified and embarrassed her so much at first that she would burst into tears and not be able to continue her talks.  She then began to realize that the root cause of her embarrassment had been her own selfishness and ego-centeredness.  Her major concern had been what the soldiers would think of her, and she had put this concern over that of actually performing her job well.  She was learning one of the lessons of her Leo ascendant, that of overcoming vanity.  With this realization, she was able to continue her talks in front of the soldiers. 
         Still in her early twenties, she next went to India to fill a position as director of several soldiers' homes there.  After several years of hard work, she fell in love with one of the soldiers, Walter Evans.  This produced an intense conflict for her because a woman of her social status could not marry an ordinary soldier.  While her emotions pulled her one way, her mind pulled her another, leading her into a classical, but most difficult, Gemininian, "head versus heart" conflict. 
          She became so distressed over this situation that she was unable to sleep and did not care if she lived or died.  This led to a nervous breakdown, and she was sent home to Scotland, weeping all the way.  There she sought the advice of relatives and friends, one of whom, an old family friend whom she had always called "Aunt Alice", was a deaconess in the church.  Aunt Alice listened sympathetically to her story and assured her that she would take care of the situation.  Alice LaTrobe-Bateman then returned to India, and Aunt Alice proceeded to pay Walter Evans' way to America where he would attend an Episcopal Seminary in Ohio.  As a clergyman, he would have the proper social status to marry an upper-class Englishwoman. 
         When Walter was shortly to be ordained, he married Alice, who later described this turning point in her life as leaving "caste and social position behind" in order to discover Humanity.  In America she found herself face-to-face with deep-seated, societal prejudice against African-Americans, and she was deeply disturbed by it.  In her autobiography, she devotes several pages to a sympathetic understanding of the plight of African-Americans, as well as Jews, in the twentieth century.  This concern about cultural prejudices is one of the foremost characteristics of Gemini, the sign of universal brother- and sisterhood. According, Bailey wrote that behind all man-made class distinctions there lies "a great entity which we call Humanity". 
         The newly married couple lived in Cincinnati, Ohio, until Walter was ordained, then moved to California where he was assigned a church.  They established a home and had three children, but Walter proved to have an outrageous temper and would sometimes throw things at Alice and push her.  It eventually became so dangerous for Alice to be at home with him that she would often seek refuge in the home of a friend.  The news eventually spread to the local bishop, who responded to the situation by taking Walter's church from him.  After six months he was given a church in Montana with the stipulation that he would send a portion of his monthly salary to Alice and the small children, who were to stay behind in California. 
         Walter took up residence in Montana, but rarely sent his wife any funds.  By this time World War I had begun, and Alice's small monthly allotments from England would sometimes not arrive because of the sinking of a ship.  When they did arrive, they had been heavily taxed.  For the first time in her life, the upper-class woman who had never before known a material care was experiencing dire poverty.  At one point she lived for three weeks on dry bread and tea so that her children would have enough to eat.  She went to work in a factory as a sardine packer, creating quite a sensation because of her high-society background.  With Taurus as part of her Soul's Purpose Formula, she was learning resourcefulness and detachment from material desire. 
         For years Alice had begun to doubt many of the Christian doctrines which she had been taught as a child.  She made some friends who were studying Theosophy, the new spiritual science that had emerged from Helena Blavatsky's writings.  Alice acquainted herself with Blavatsky's Secret Doctrine, began to study with her friends, and joined the local Theosophical Society (T.S.).  She found that the Ageless Wisdom, which Theosophy expounded, "threw clear light on ... Christian theology" and began to teach at the Lodge.  In 1917 Walter was sent to France, and the local bishop in California arranged for Alice to receive an allotment of $100 per month from his stipend.  Alice then dropped her job in the sardine factory and moved to Hollywood with her children in the vicinity of the T.S. headquarters. 
         In 1918 Alice was admitted into the Society's Esoteric Section which controlled the policies of the organization.  She was then allowed into the Shrine Room where she learned, for the first time, the identity of the man who had visited her in the drawing room when she was fifteen years of age.  From one of the pictures hanging on the wall, she recognized her visitor of twenty-three years previously as the Master Koot Hoomi. 
         The Esoteric Section was the "inner sanctum" of the T.S., and here Alice learned much that displeased her.  She found the Society to be surprisingly sectarian in nature, with a "reactionary and old-fashioned" management.  For example, in order for one to become a member of the Esoteric Section (E.S.), one had to have been a member of the T.S. for at least two years.  With this requirement fulfilled, one would be required to sever connections with all other groups, pledging loyalty only to the E.S.  The T.S. also claimed that only its members could be disciples of the Masters of Wisdom.  In her autobiography,* Alice Bailey expressed her disagreement with these self-righteous policies, common to the structures of many organizations, by stating that the "average head of a group" poses as if to be "the anointed of the Lord" when, in reality, he/she is only a human being simply trying to help his/her fellow man/woman.  This is one of the realizations of the Leo on the Path.  Leadership is seen not as a means to power or as an ego-trip, but as a way of serving Humanity, channeling the Christ Light, and helping to further the Divine Plan. 
         In 1919, through her work in the T.S., Alice Evans met Foster Bailey and began working with him on the projects of the Society.  Having been granted a divorce from Walter Evans, she and Foster soon became engaged to be married.  They both became officers of the Society, leading to much involvement in its internal disputes.  At its 1920 convention, the T.S. elected a new executive, and both Alice and Foster, who had been pushing for egalitarian reform, were ousted from their positions. 
         In November 1919 Alice was first contacted by the Master Djwhal, called the Tibetan, who asked her if she would write some books for the public.  In those days there was much fraud and charlatanism in the field of the occult, and Alice wanted no part of any work of a psychic nature.  The Tibetan asked her to reconsider her decision during the next three weeks, assuring her that she had a certain gift for higher telepathy and that this work would not at all be related to lower psychism.  When the Tibetan contacted her three weeks later, she reluctantly agreed to give it a try for a short period of time.  Over the next few weeks, Alice began transcribing, in full waking consciousness, the beginning of Initiation Human and Solar, the concepts of which were dictated by the Tibetan.  She finally decided to continue the work, which proved to last thirty years, with the last dictation occurring shortly before her death. 
         After Alice and Foster lost their positions at the T.S. in California, Foster was offered a job at the New York headquarters.  Shortly after settling in New York, they were married, and Foster became an excellent stepfather to the three children.  Alice Bailey began teaching classes on The Secret Doctrine, and in 1923 she and Foster organized the Arcane School.  This school was set up to be completely free from any requirements of allegiance to it or to anyone except to one's own inner soul.  Its workers were all volunteer, and there was no charge for the work done, which primarily involved distributing information and offering correspondence courses.  In Alice Bailey's chart, Pluto in Taurus is on the cusp of the house which contains the esoteric ruler of her ascendant.  Pluto in Taurus destroys old thought forms which have been the basis of earthbound attachments. On the cusp of the eleventh house, it works to eliminate that which has been blocking the true spiritual purpose of a group from being manifested.  Taurus esoterically represents the consciousness of illuminating maya, revealing the essential beauty and Light inherent in all things. The esoteric ruler of Taurus is Vulcan, which, in Mrs. Bailey's chart, is in Gemini, the sign of communication, education, and Love-Wisdom.  Vulcan is in the eleventh house in Bailey's chart in a conjunction with Venus and the Sun, both also in Gemini. Vulcan in Gemini frees the expression of Love as expressed through the sharing of wisdom on a universal scale. It involves the concept of free information - information that is not withheld from anyone who seeks it.  Alice Bailey was following her soul's plan to create (Leo) a center (Sun) of education (Gemini) that was free from personal desire and attachment (Taurus), thus helping to destroy the idea of personal ownership of knowledge that often occurs within a closed group.  The eleventh house is the house of mass communication and world service, two significators of the Aquarian Age.  With Pluto in Taurus on her eleventh cusp and Vulcan within the eleventh house, Mrs. Bailey did not even charge for her counseling work in the course of which she often saw a new person every twenty minutes of the day. 
         Also with her husband, Alice Bailey organized the International Goodwill Movement which had Units of Service in nineteen countries by 1939.  These Units would receive certain teachings and be given guidance for service and the spreading of goodwill throughout the world.  It had been decided to emphasize goodwill instead of peace because when peace is present without goodwill, there can be unhappy conditions which could potentially lead to war at any time.
         The formation of the Goodwill Movement was an attempt to anchor the work of the Spiritual Hierarchy of Masters onto the planet.  This work involves helping to manifest the Divine Plan on Earth by channeling Light, Love, and Higher Purpose into the minds, hearts, and wills of Humanity.  The planet of bringing Spirit into matter is Venus, which is found in Gemini in Bailey's eleventh house, and is thus part of her Soul's Purpose Formula.   Venus in Gemini works to spread the light of knowledge among all cultures, classes, and nationalities in order to help them realize their connection and work together as one human family.  Again, Alice Bailey was acting out her soul's purpose by being in the center (leo) of non-profit (Taurus) Aquarian Age work (eleventh house) to help link people together, worldwide, (Gemini) through the proliferation of spiritual knowledge (Venus). 
         In Leo, the personality is formed in its three aspects: physical, emotional, and mental. The last stage of personality formation is the mental stage, and it is with developing the intellect that much of the work of Leo lies.  Once the intellect is developed to the point where it balances the physical and emotional development, Leo becomes totally aware of, and secure in, his/her individuality.  The Leo on the Path then proceeds to first, become aware of the Divinity within, and second, to use his/her individuality as a tool in furthering Divine purposes.  Bailey wrote four books in her own words, without dictation from the Tibetan, for the purpose of demonstrating her mind.  She desired to prove that it was possible to engage in psychic/telepathic work and, at the same time, be of high intelligence. In doing this she planted a seed for the Aquarian Age in which all psychism will be totally conscious and come through the mind.  This New Age psychism is known as intuition, and it will be fostered by a society in which the mind can expand and proliferate, much as we are seeing today with the expansion of technology which enables greater mental cultivation.  Thus, the writing of her own books not only gave Alice Bailey an opportunity to express herself (Leo), but also to demonstrate her mental focus, which is a characteristic of all New Age intuitive work. 
         With the ruler of her ascendant in the eleventh house of world service, Bailey states in her autobiography* that in the next lifetime she plans "to find the same group of workers", pick up the threads of her present life, and "go on with the job."  This concept reflects that of the "New Group of World Servers", a group of souls united on the subjective planes, although not necessarily on the outer planes.  This Group serves the Spiritual Hierarchy, headed by the Christ, and acts in a mediating role between It and Humanity in order to help enlighten the entire planet. 
         In 1949, after having left the world with over twenty books, the Arcane School, and the International Goodwill Movement, Alice Bailey was met by the Master Koot Hoomi as she left her physical body.  She lives on, however, in the Light and Love which she helped spread as she endeavored to introduce the world to the Masters, their Wisdom, and their Work. 


Alice Bailey's Soul's Purpose Formula: Leo ascending with Mars in Leo conjunct the ascendant, ruled by Sun in Gemini in the eleventh house with Venus and Vulcan in Gemini and Pluto in Taurus on its cusp, ruled by Vulcan in Gemini in the eleventh house.

Two suggested interpretations of Alice Bailey's Soul's Purpose Formula:

(1) Through the power of Will (Mars in Leo), destroy old ideas of group greed (Pluto in Taurus on the eleventh house cusp) by manifesting (Leo ascending) a center of education (Sun in Gemini) that is free from personal desire and attachment (Vulcan) and that will serve the entire planet (eleventh house) by bringing forth spiritual knowledge (Venus) that will connect all members of Humanity (Gemini). 

(2) Eradicate the egocentric concept of leadership (Mars in Leo) by creating (Leo ascending), and being the central coordinator (Sun in Gemini) of, a revolutionary (Pluto) type of non-profit, educational (Vulcan in Gemini with Taurus on the cusp) association (eleventh house) that will bring awareness of the true brother- and sisterhood of Humanity (Venus in Gemini).

For further information read The Soul's Purpose Formula

To view the horoscope of Alice Bailey, please click here

*Source: The Unfinished Autobiography by Alice A. Bailey, Lucis Publishing Company, New York, 1981.  (return to first asterisk in textreturn to second asterisk in text; return to third asterisk in text)

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copyright 1983-1999 by Adele E. Barger [Wilson]

updated July 30, 1999

          The following Soul's Purpose Formula technique has been slightly modified from that first developed by Dr. Douglas Baker and taught to me by Judi Laws and Lynn Koiner of the Amethyst group in Washington, D.C., in the early 1980s.   This Formula is based on the principle set forth on page 17 of Alice Bailey's Esoteric Astrology that the ascendant of a horoscope is the key to "the spiritual goal and purpose of the immediate incarnation and of the immediate succeeding incarnations."   The second two elements of the Formula are based on the astrological principle of house cusp rulership. In constructing the Soul's Purpose Formula, only the esoteric rulerships, as given in Esoteric Astrology, are used:
Sign Ruler Sign Ruler
Aries Mercury Libra Uranus
Taurus Vulcan Scorpio Mars
Gemini Venus Sagittarius Earth
Cancer Neptune Capricorn Saturn
Leo Sun Aquarius Jupiter
Virgo Moon Pisces Pluto

The Formula is to be used only on charts calculated for exact birth times.   Solar or noon charts are meaningless when working with soul-level astrology.
          Among the modifications that I have introduced to the Soul's Purpose Formula are the following: (1) Planets in the first house are considered as part of the Formula; and (2) a planet up to eight degrees behind a house cusp is considered conjunct that cusp and affecting its house rather than the house in which it is technically found.   Modification number (2) can be applied with flexibility due to the inaccuracy of most birth times and the use of different house systems, and may thus be overridden by intuitive judgement.
         Planets conjunct any of the "soul's purpose rulers" are included in the Formula and considered as important as the rulers themselves.  The suggested orb for these conjunctions is about four degrees, but this orb may be decreased or increased depending upon intuitive judgement and possible complications due to the involvement of a planetary stellium.
         There are three elements to the Soul's Purpose Formula, each being separated by a large dot, which can be translated as "ruled by."  Instructions for determining each of these three elements are as follows:

First Element

          Rising sign and "asc," followed by any planet in the first house, along with the sign of this planet and "1" in parentheses.   Example:  

Capricorn ascendant with Mars in Capricorn in the first house  

Second Element

         Esoteric ruler of the rising sign, the sign of this esoteric ruler, and the house of this esoteric ruler, followed by any planet(s) within orb of conjunction of this esoteric ruler, preceded by the symbol for "conjunct", enclosed in parentheses.   If the sign on the cusp of this house is different from that of this second element esoteric ruler, place the cuspal sign within a large "C".  Example:

Saturn conjunct Mercury in Virgo in the seventh house with Cancer on its cusp  

Third Element

          Esoteric ruler of the sign on the cusp of the house containing the rising sign ruler.  This will be either the esoteric ruler of the sign within the "C" or, in absence of the "C", the esoteric ruler of the sign in which the ascendant ruler is found.   As with the second element, any planets conjunct this third element ruler should then be placed in parentheses, preceded by the symbol for "conjunct," as explained previously.  Also as with the second element, if the sign on the cusp of this house differs from that of the third element ruler, place it within a "C".   Example:  

Neptune in Pisces in the second house  

          For further clarity, these first-, second-, and third-element examples are repeated in the following illustration:
*Time adjusted for Time Zone 5 from original LMT of 3:58 p.m.
   (birth data from Profiles of Women by Lois M. Rodden)
Grandma Moses' Soul's Purpose Formula:  

Capricorn ascendant with Mars in Capricorn in the first house, ruled by Saturn conjunct Mercury in Virgo in the seventh house with Cancer on its cusp, ruled by Neptune in Pisces in the second house. 

          The Soul's Purpose Formula is intended only as a guideline, or skeleton, for attempting to discern the soul-level purpose in a given incarnation.   Its symbols should be interpreted in the context of the totality of the birth chart and within the realm of the intuitive perception of the astrologer.   In the future, when the psychology of the Seven Rays becomes blended with the art/science of astrology, the interpretation of the Soul's Purpose Formula will also be qualified by the soul (and Monadic?) Rays of the native of the horoscope.
         The Soul's Purpose Formula, consisting of astrological glyphs, represents an abstraction of energies characteristic of the planes/dimensions which transcend normal human consciousness.   Because words tend to limit, or even distort, the abstract ideas which they attempt to convey, one verbal expression of a Formula is at best only a partial picture of the soul's purpose of the native.  For a more wholistic perspective, it is recommended that at least two, and preferably three, verbalizations of the astrological formula be rendered.   The combination of these two, three, or more interpretations will hopefully give a type of gestalt of the astrologer's viewpoint of the native's soul purpose.
         This astrological formula for describing a soul's purpose is (as is all of astrology) a fusion of language and art.   Differing from a mathematical formula in which there is a concrete, one-to-one correspondence between the symbols and what they signify, the Soul's Purpose Formula consists of symbols deriving from the plane of Buddhi, or intuition, where verbal concepts are left behind in favor of more refined, pervasive energies.   The interpretation of the Soul's Purpose Formula, then, perhaps represents astrology at its finest:  a bold attempt to bridge Buddhi with intellect by stepping down archetypal energies into verbal form.

         For an example of the use and interpretation of the Soul's Purpose Formula, please see:  How the Soul of William Blake Spoke through his Art.

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copyright 1983, 2000 by Adele Barger Wilson

          Each year in the northern hemisphere during the solar month of Virgo, grains, fruits, and vegetables are harvested to be preserved and stored to sustain life throughout the winter.  It seemed quite appropriate, therefore, when I once heard a planetarium director refer to Virgo as the "Mother of the Harvest." 
          In esoteric astrology, Virgo is the mother of another type of harvest:  the harvest of the perfected Soul from the womb of form.  It is one of the lessons of Virgo that the very purpose of form life is to enhouse the life of the Soul, while facilitating the personality's experiences, growth, and education.  The body is indeed the "Temple of the Soul."  And the personality, which unfolds and reaches a high degree of development in the sign of Leo, becomes the "mother of the Christ principle" in Virgo.  This is a symbolic way of saying that in this sign, the personality assumes the role of nurturer and shielder of the inner Christ Self which lies latent until the personality is prepared to give It birth. 
          In Virgo, one begins to make one's personality useful to the indwelling Christ which one is learning to recognize.  One purifies one's motives and redirects one's talents and mind toward service - the service which results in a higher level of consciousness which stimulates the inner Christ Light. 
          The Soul and the body, which are distinct and separate in Gemini, begin to be blended in Virgo.   In Virgo, the Word of God/dess begins to take form through the infant Soul which is, as yet, hidden.  It is said that this Hidden Spiritual Reality, this indwelling Christ, is eventually and finally manifested in the sign of Pisces. 
          There is a reason why the form must be gradually prepared, adjusted, and aligned before the consciousness, or inner Soul, can be awakened.  If higher spiritual energies are registered by an unprepared form, the form becomes shattered and destroyed.  This is why the nervous system, the glandular system, and the brain must be developed and brought to certain degrees of perfection before they can safely receive the highly refined energies from spiritual realms.
          In orthodox astrology Virgo represents the processes of assimilation and digestion, the taking in of food whose nutrients are stored for future use.  (This meaning is contrasted with that of Cancer, which, in orthodox astrology, represents the process of ingesting food for instant gratification.)   By analogy, in esoteric astrology, Virgo rules the assimilation and digestion of life experiences, those life experiences which contribute to the growth and eventual perfection of the personality. 
          Virgo is related to the concept of the "womb of time".   Just as the harvest must be stored and hidden away for a period of time, Virgo represents the gestation period of the Soul, a time during which the Soul is hidden.   Sheltered in this womb of time, Virgo has many opportunities to distill practical, everyday wisdom from the variety of experiences she encounters in adjusting to life in an earthbound environment, while learning to give loving service in this environment.
          Virgo, the "Virgin Mother", represents the mothering of the unborn Christ through the purification of her physical, astral, and mental bodies.  In this sign, the nurturing mother hides and protects the indwelling Christ within her own substance.  She simultaneously nourishes two lives:  that of the form and that of the Christ hidden within this form.  Her esoteric ruler is the Moon, the mother of all earthly forms.  The Moon absorbs and receives the energies of the Sun and other planets in order to transmit nurturing energies to physical life on Earth.  In the same way, the life of the personality form in Virgo absorbs, receives, and subordinates itself to the inner spiritual Will to transmit nurturing energies to the hidden Christ Self.
          To put it another way, Virgo represents the process whereby matter and form life are purified so that they can eventually reveal Divinity.  This is the true reason for the continual striving toward perfection that is so characteristic of this sign.  It is necessary for Virgo to constantly adjust, analyze, and discriminate in order to produce the type of form that will be able to nurture, and eventually bring forth, the Christ within. 
          We can now see Virgo's seemingly obsessive attention to detail, her incessant discriminatory observations, and her often misunderstood particularities in a new light.   By devotedly nurturing her physical body, her personality, and the physical environment in which she lives, Virgo is also nurturing her Soul, for her Soul, though hidden at this stage, is, in turn, being sheltered and nourished by her body, personality, and environment.  By nurturing and refining the physical environment, she is not only nurturing her own Soul, but also the Soul of Humanity, producing the conditions that will pave the way for the collective Christ consciousness to be born on this planet.
          The analogy between Virgo's traditional and esoteric meanings now becomes clear.   Just as the small intestine, which Virgo traditionally rules, assimilates food and prepares it for use by the physical body, esoteric Virgo assimilates the experiences of life and distills their inherent wisdom in order to feed and refine her personality.   In this way she is preparing her personality to receive the full impact of her Soul's energy.   When this full impact is finally achieved, her Soul blossoms, her personality becomes Its devoted instrument, and the indwelling Christ Self is fully born.

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© 1998-1999 Adele Wilson

The following sign meanings are based on the principles set forth by Djwhal Khul
through Alice Bailey in Chapter II of Esoteric Astrology and simplified in
 An Esoteric Journey Through the Zodiac: The Inner Meanings of the Signs

PLEASE NOTE:  By no means do the paragraphs on this page represent firm or final textbook delineations.  Please consider them as constituting an initial attempt to verbalize possible soul's-purpose implications of the ascending sign in the horoscope.  I offer them to you as a starting point, an initial frame of reference, in our collective quest to discern and recognize the various arenas of growth, types of consciousness expansion, and fields of service that can be intended by the human soul.  Of course, the esoteric significance of the rising sign must be modified by many factors, most significantly, by planets in the first house, aspects to the ascending degree, and the house position, sign, and aspects of the esoteric ruler of the ascendant.  Degree, decanate, duad, and fixed star symbolisms are among the many other possible colorations that can contribute to the synthesis that would begin to describe the soul's purpose.

ARIES - Replacing instinctual desire with will;  the increasing assertion of the Higher Self;  discerning Divine Will by birthing new ideas to aid the evolution of the planet;  embodying Divine Will by personifying and enacting these ideas

TAURUS - Being a wise steward of the Earth's resources, utilizing them for the fulfillment of the Divine Plan;  seeing, becoming, and using Light as a tool to dissipate astral glamour and to transmute material attachment into spiritual aspiration

GEMINI - Giving Love wisely and applying Wisdom lovingly; spreading Light and bridging gaps between people; being a channel of Love-Wisdom to help connect people and promote planetwide unity of all Humanity

CANCER - Realizing the Oneness of all manifested life, human, animal, vegetable, and mineral;  using innate attunement to mass consciousness to build forms that will uplift and inspire Humanity toward the universal Love of the heart chakra

LEO - Becoming centered in God-consciousness by perfecting the personality and infusing it with soul energy in order to radiate Love to others; leading a humanitarian service group and cooperating with other group leaders in a unified effort to usher in a higher planetary consciousness

VIRGO - Refining the personality so that it can receive the energies of the soul and thus birth the Christ Consciousness in the self;  helping to rearrange the physical plane in preparation for receiving the higher energies necessary for planetary initiation

LIBRA - Seeing the other as part of oneself;  incorporating insights from others in order to realize the balance between, and unity of, the personality and the Higher Self;  becoming Whole through cooperation with the Higher Self and the Divine Plan

SCORPIO - Transmuting lower desires into Higher Will through the testing and purging of the personality;  being a spiritual warrior and catalyst of healing through the embodiment and transmission of Divine Power

SAGITTARIUS - Experiencing all facets of human life in order to develop a complete acceptance, understanding, and love of others of different cultures, creeds, races, and religions;  bearing the torch of Light and Love to inspire others toward greater understanding of life and of each other

CAPRICORN - Developing patience, persistence, and perseverance by working productively within the limitations of matter, time, and space in order to progress spiritually, become increasingly involved with the Forces of Light, and assume greater responsibilities in helping to manifest the Divine Plan on Earth

AQUARIUS - Waking up to the universality of Spirit and the Divine essence and unity of all beings, interplanetary and extraplanetary;  serving uniquely and lovingly in a cooperative effort with other servers, under the direction of the Planetary Hierarchy, to help the whole of Humanity awaken and take its next step forward in consciousness

PISCES - Becoming aware of ingrained personal attitudes, cultural thoughtforms, and societal institutions which hinder planetary progress, then wielding Power to transmute these into higher forms of energy, thus clearing the way for the new thought forms which will serve the the Divine Plan of evolution for the planet and the solar system

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Portraits of Sagittarius Rising

by Adele Barger Wilson

          In the late summer of 1997 two great bearers of Light made their transitions from our world.  In the early morning hours of Sunday, August 31, in Paris, Diana, Princess of Wales, released her physical body and found the peace that she had not found in the adult years of her earthly sojourn.  Five days later, Mother Teresa did the same, ending her saintly incarnation of ministering to the dying and the helpless in Calcutta, India.  Although one was a celebrated royal in her thirties and the other, an elderly Catholic nun in her eighties, both had attained international renown.

          What message did the Universe want us to receive from the almost simultaneous departures of these two exceptional souls?   In large part, this message was one of inspiration, for both of these beings were great uplifters of human consciousness.  In their own individual ways and arenas of service, they both held their torches of illumination so that we could be made more aware of the all-too-often human conditions of suffering and pain.  They both attempted to teach us that a primal part of our responsibility in being human lies in helping to alleviate the miseries of our brothers and sisters.

          Both Princess Diana and Mother Teresa had the sign of SAGITTARIUS RISING (or "ascending") on the eastern horizon when they were born.  The rising sign, according to esoteric teachings, indicates the path of the soul.  Sagittarius is the Centaur-Archer, half human, half animal, aiming an arrow at that which will help uplift us from this conflicting and ironic condition.  The Centaur teaches us that we also live in animal bodies, but are something more than animals.  We are Divine Spirits temporarily housed in mortal flesh while progressing upward, like the Centaur's arrow, toward our true Home.

          The experience of Sagittarius is the treading of the pathways of the earthbound world to seek and share the Light and Love of Divinity.  Sagittarius, having been reborn as a result of the trials and testing in Scorpio, is the first intuitively aware sign.  Instead of journeying into more peaceful and blissful realms, the Sagittarian purposefully remains in this world of conflict in order to help others who are struggling.  Sagittarius is the spiritual warrior, using the strength of intuitive insight to pierce through the fog of astral energies and thus illuminate pathways to higher consciousness.

          The ruler of Sagittarius has traditionally been perceived as Jupiter.  From the perspective of the soul, however, the true ruler is the Earth.  The Earth is always 180 degrees from the Sun in an astrological chart.  The Tibetan Master, Djwhal Khul, said that the Earth is the place where sorrow is released and pain, purified. From the viewpoint of the great Cosmic Beings, the Earth is a kind of purgatory, a schoolhouse where souls can learn to love in a Divine way and spread the Light that will save the planet from perpetual darkness.  Our Earth is a like a spaceship, progressing through the various realms of the universe.  The entire human family is travelling on this spaceship.   Sagittarius teaches us that no matter what our race, culture, religion, or status in life, by virtue of being incarnated in this time and place, we are all enduring the human condition.  Through our pain we learn of our ultimately Divine essence; we develop greater compassion for others who are suffering.  In this way, our lower selves become purged as we reach up toward greater realms and channel the Energy that will heal, and make healers of, others.

          The placement of the Earth in a Sagittarius-ascending chart shows where this spiritual journey takes place, that is, where the Sagittarius-rising person must walk the plains of the Earth, intermingle with other souls, and thus adapt to the conditions found there.   Princess Diana had her Earth in the sign of Capricorn in the first house of true beingness.  Capricorn is the sign of the public and of high positions of power.  Thus Diana found herself in the limelight dealing with authoritarian figures.  She was forced to adapt to a life of high expectations, where the eyes of the public were always upon her.  Her spiritual task was to personify the power that was in her midst, imbue this power with Love, then to use this power to be an example of a humanitarian warrior and teacher.

          In Mother Teresa's chart the Earth was in Pisces, the sign of the often-shunned, suffering members of Humanity.  Her Earth was in the second house of stewardship, that is, the wise use of earthly resources to help realize the Divine Plan on the physical plane.  She stated that she was but "a pencil in God's hand."  Accordingly, Mother Teresa's task was to adapt to living in the impoverished environment of those of all faiths whom no one else would help.  She served and comforted them through the institution of the church, also ruled by Pisces.

          Another great inspirer who had Sagittarius rising was Eleanor Roosevelt.   Mrs. Roosevelt was the first wife of a U.S. president who endured criticism for promoting humanitarian causes which were not the same as her husband's.   She travelled across America during the Great Depression of the 1930's presenting new government programs and inspiring the impoverished not to give up hope.  During World War II she visited war-stricken victims in Europe to support them and bring the attention of the world to the affliction and pain that fighting can wreak upon Humanity.

          With the Earth in the example-setting sign of Aries in the fifth house of heart-centered expression, Eleanor Roosevelt embodied the lesson of expressing and exposing one's true heart, even at the risk of unpopularity. Having been relatively plain-looking and unglamorous since childhood, she was forced to act solely on her own behalf and to work within an Aries context of being a pioneer, standing up for principles and setting precedents. She blazed the trail for women to take leadership roles in the worldwide improvement of human conditions by being the only woman in the first American delegation to the United Nations and, later, the Chair of the Commission on the Status of Women under U.S. President Kennedy.  In her work with the United Nations, she forged the idea of the Peace Corps in which American youth could be exposed to and serve the various cultures of the world in the context of these cultures' native views which may not have been the same as American views.  She was Chair of the U.N. Human Rights Commission and helped to draft a universal declaration of human rights.  Perhaps her greatest offering was to spotlight the overwhelming need to first provide the people of the world with food, shelter, and clothing without imposing any political agendas on them.   With the fifth house of a chart corresponding to the Sun-ruled sign of Leo, and thus to stardom, Eleanor Roosevelt's Earth in the fifth house is proven by the fact that her modern-day followers still look to her as a brilliant, guiding light, illustrating the enormous impact that women can make on this world.

          These three noble individuals fulfilled their Sagittarian ascendants by seeking to ease the miseries of all humans, not because they were of particular religious sects, races, or nationalities, but simply because they were human.  Mother Teresa ministered as a devout Catholic in a country that was not her native one, to those who were not Christian.   Princess Diana travelled from her homeland to express the need for all of us to care for those of other cultures and nationalities who are in pain and suffering.  Eleanor Roosevelt rose above politics and fought for international recognition of basic rights of all humans, regardless of the nationalistic orientations of their governments.  She believed in cultivating a mind that is "open like a window to currents of air and to light from all sides," a lucid description of Sagittarius-rising consciousness.

          All of these women, in true Sagittarian fashion, gave the world hope, courage, and inspiration.  They embroiled themselves in some of the most distasteful aspects of human life so that they could infuse these with Light and Love and inspire others to do the same.  They brought our attention to physical and emotional realities that must be eradicated in order for the whole of Humanity to evolve and showed us that the healing of the planet must begin with those who most cry out for help.

          These three Sagittarian ascendants have now continued their journeys to engage in even greater Work. Having transcended our world, however, these true bearers of Light, through our memory of their examples, continue to bestow their blessings of inspiration and wisdom upon us.

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The Triadic Nature of the Sun's Energy

(excerpted from An Esoteric Journey through the Zodiac, 
the Inner Meanings of the Signs
, pp 22-23, copyright 1996 Adele Barger Wilson)

The Sun rules Leo on both exoteric and esoteric levels.  Esoterically, the Sun has three aspects:  the physical Sun, the Heart of the Sun, and the Central Spiritual Sun.  The agent of the Heart of the Sun is Neptune, and the agent of the Central Spiritual Sun is Uranus.  This means that the energies of the Heart of the Sun and the Central Spiritual Sun are distributed to Earth via Neptune and Uranus, respectively.  According to the Tibetan Master, the Sun “veils" both of these planets.  (See pages 8-9.)

The Sun symbolizes the personality, and in Leo the personality undergoes an evolution in self awareness from the personal to the transpersonal.  Selfishness, egotism, and personal will must be conquered and replaced with Universal Love and World Service.  In this process, not only the Sun, but also Uranus and Neptune, are involved.

Leo represents the development and expression of self consciousness, which proceeds in stages which parallel the stages of the first three initiations. At the First Initiation, one realizes that there is Something greater than just the physical body, Something which binds all Humanity together.  At this birth of Soul awareness, one begins to respond to the physical Sun.  At the Second Initiation, presided over by the Heart of the Sun whose agent is Neptune, the  lower self-centered emotions have given way to the impulse to somehow help make life better for one’s brothers and sisters in the Family of Humanity.  In the long period between the Second and Third Initiations, the concrete mind becomes increasingly responsive to the Soul and becomes the dominant component of the personality. When all three parts of  the personality are functioning as one unit, the personality comes totally under the influence of the Soul, and the Third Initiation is taken.  The Third Initiation is ruled by Uranus as the agent for the Central Spiritual Sun.

Thus, knowing where the Leo is on the Path lends greater insight into chart interpretation.  If the Leo is between the First and Second Initiations, use the Sun itself as Leo’s esoteric ruler.  If between the Second and Third Initiations, Neptune should be substituted for the Sun.  If the Leo has taken the Third Initiation, the Sun should be replaced by Uranus.

To view another excerpt from this book, see The Esoteric Meaning of Scorpio Rising.

For a list of articles on esoteric astrology based on the work of Alice Bailey and Djwhal Khul, see the Astrology Harvest article list.

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copyright 1983-1999 by Adele E. Barger [Wilson]

William Blake's Soul's Purpose Formula:

Cancer rising, ruled by Neptune in Leo in the second house with Leo on the cusp, ruled by the Sun in Sagittarius in the fifth house with Libra on the cusp.

       In 1757 William Blake began his incarnation, not in a rural setting as was  so often the case with poets and artists prior to his time, but in the inner city of London where his soul could better understand and be involved with the consciousness of the masses, as dictated by his Cancer ascendant.  (See Esoteric Meanings of the Rising Signs.)  At the same time, young Blake enjoyed communing with nature and often took walks through the country to nearby villages.  On one of these walks, at the age of ten, he experienced a vision of a tree full of angels.  So we see that even early in his life, he was drawing upon the energy of the esoteric ruler of his ascendant, the mystical Neptune, placed in his second house of appreciation of inner beauty and the Divine Light.
        Neptune in Blake's chart was in Leo, the sign of self expression of the
Divinity within.  With this combination of Neptune in the house of inner beauty and in the sign of self expression, Blake's boyhood desire to be an artist resulted in his attending a drawing school as a child.  At age 14 he was apprenticed to an engraver, and at age 22 he entered the Royal Academy.
         The second house is not only the house of learning to appreciate the
essential beauty of all things, but it is also the house where we must focus on our own resources and how to rightly use them.  Therefore, it is no surprise that Blake found himself turning to his art for self-sustenance in his early twenties when he began selling his engravings as a means of livelihood.  Upon settling into a marriage, he set up a printing business, but soon had to abandon it for reason of financial failure.  Again he had to return to selling his own engravings to support himself and his wife.
          Ruling Leo both traditionally and esoterically, the Sun is the third element
in Blake's Soul's Purpose Formula.  With the Sun in his fifth house of creativity, Blake's spiritual service to the world, and his legacy, was his art.  Blake's Sun was in Sagittarius, the sign of variety.  Therefore, his art took the forms of poetry, prose, paintings, and engravings.  Sagittarius is also associated with publishing, an activity in which Blake engaged early in his life with the publication of his first poetry book when he was only in his twenties.  At the age of 32 he self-published the next of what would be several books of poetry, all of which he would illustrate with his own engravings, printing and coloring them by hand.
         In his early years at the Royal Academy, Blake had become part of
a circle of politically liberal intellectuals who had helped him cultivate the progressive philosophies which he would later express in his art and writing. 
          During those years as a young adult in the late 1700s, Blake had found himself
steeped in discussions and news of the political oppressions and mass revolutions that were occurring in both in France and in America.  The budding philosopher/poet, with his Sagittarian Sun, thus had the perfect opportunity to understand the common human dilemma of that time which transcended national boundaries. From this he developed an view of human nature that would later be expressed in his works of poetry and engravings.  
       With Libra on the cusp of the house containing his
Sagittarian Sun, Blake's works would address not only the philosophical principle(Sagittarius) of human dignity and Divinity (Sun), but also the need for integration of this principle into one's psyche in order to restore the wholeness (Libra) of one's essential nature.         Blake himself was a revolutionary at heart, sympathizing with those who were being oppressed by their authoritarian governments.  He perceived both church and state to be too restrictive, and he saw the birth of the industrial  revolution as a threat that would reduce humans to the status of animals working in a mill.  He felt that over the centuries, Christianity had destroyed human dignity to a point where the human being had come to be regarded as basically stupid, sinful, and almost hopeless.  His argument was that all of man's "lower" traits were as much a part of the Divine scheme as anything else, and that these lower traits did not necessarily contradict the harmony of nature.  Asserting that it was natural for people to fight for causes in The Marriage of Heaven and Hell, he referred to "the wrath of the lion" as "the wisdom of God," using the imagery of the Lion of Leo, the sign of his Neptune, the esoteric ruler of his ascendant.Blake also preferred the symbol of the courageous and aggressive tiger to the meek and withdrawing Christian lamb, as reflected in the following well known example of his poetry:

"Tyger, tyger burning bright in the forests of the night.."

       Leo, the sign of Blake's esoteric chart ruler, is generally associated not only with the lion, but with all members of the cat family.  Three other elements of his Soul's Purpose Formula are also expressed in the poetry:  (1) the Sun, which is the brightest burning orb in our sky;  (2) Sagittarius, which is the sign of the expansiveness of nature, with its encompassing forests;  and (3) Cancer, which is the "midnight" sign, symbolically the darkest, as it corresponds to the fourth house of the horoscope, the place where the Sun is at midnight.  With these astrological correspondences, then, we have:  

"Tiger, tiger (Leo) burning bright (Sun) in the forests (Sagittarius) of the night (Cancer)."

       As is often true of Cancer-rising people, William Blake had a strongly visual mind which was capable of "eidetic" imagery;  that is, he saw, in his mind's eye, not just flat images, but three-dimensional figures as if they were standing in front of him.  He was a highly original artist and, true to his strong fifth house and Leo, laid more emphasis on his individual creativity than in catering to public taste.  A true mystic in the Neptunian sense, he refused to be persuaded by facts and reality, and thus is been regarded as one of the poets best representing the Romantic era.
         Blake's paintings are unusual in that they depict human bodies which are
muscular and corporeal (second house), while the paintings themselves, and often the bodies, also partake of Neptune's energy by having a certain ethereal quality to them.  His art conveys a certain spirited "fieriness" (Leo, Sagittarius) in meaning and imagery, while retaining the flowing lines and more subtle colors of the water element of Cancer.  Fire and water are blended in an ingenious way throughout his paintings, reflecting the strong fire-water emphasis in his Soul's Purpose Formula.    
         One of his paintings, Nebuchadnezzar, depicts an animal-like
man on hands and knees with a long beard and anguished expression, which gives him the appearance of a lion (Leo).  This combination of man and animal is reflective of Blake's Sun sign of Sagittarius by being analogous to the Sagittarian centaur, the torso of a man joined to the body of a horse.
          The Sun, as the center of our solar system, can symbolize the center of
anything, and Sagittarius is the sign associated with publishing.  True to his Sun in Sagittarius, the third element of his Soul's Purpose Formula, Blake was the center of his own publishing company, personally producing his own illustrated books of poetry.  Again, the placement of his ascendant's esoteric ruler, Neptune, in his second house shows that his spiritual purpose involved developing, and learning to rely upon, his own resources without becoming entwined in the resources of other people.
         The soul-oriented person with Cancer rising has an above-average
sensitivity toward the needs and predicaments of ordinary, everyday people, giving an innate ability to tune into mass consciousness.  The highest expression of a Cancer ascendant is to use this natural ability to tune into the masses in order to somehow help raise the general awareness of the entire culture, both in the present and in the future.  This is often accomplished on a subtle level, appealing to people's subconscious minds through the use of imagery or the development of new archetypes of consciousness.
          William Blake was especially attuned to the human predicament because of
the prominence of the signs of Leo, Sagittarius, and Aquarius being so abundantly represented in his chart.  He had Neptune and Mars in Leo, Saturn in Aquarius, and the Sun, Jupiter, and Pluto in Sagittarius.  On top of this, he had the South Node in Aquarius and the North Node in Leo.  These three signs, Leo, Sagittarius, and Aquarius, are the signs, according to the Tibetan Master Djwhal Khul, more closely connected to Humanity as a whole than are any of the other signs.  The reason for this is that Leo, Sagittarius, and Aquarius are the signs that transmit the Fifth Ray of Concrete Knowledge and Science, the Ray upon which the personality of Humanity manifests.
          Based on my perceptions of Blake's chart, one expression of his Soul's
Purpose Formula might be:

Create beautiful imagery portraying the body/spirit dilemma of Humanity in order to make the masses more aware of their need to achieve wholeness and greater autonomy through personal expression of their innate Divinity.

With the astrological symbols added:

Create (Leo) beautiful (second house) imagery (Neptune) portraying the body/spirit dilemma of Humanity (Sagittarius) in order to make the masses more aware (Cancer ascendant) of their need to achieve wholeness (Libra) and greaterautonomy (Sun) through personal expression of their innate Divinity (Leo).

       In The Zodiac and the Soul, astrologer C. E. 0. Carter noted that Blake was
less immersed in the physical world than was the ordinary human being of his time. Perhaps this speaks to Blake's Neptune being in his second house.  In expression of this Neptune placement, Blake once said that "man has no body apart from his soul" because that which we call the body is merely the "portion of soul discerned by the five senses."  Here Neptune, the great dissolver of boundaries, dissolves theboundary between the physical body (second house) and its point of origin (Cancer) the soul.  (The sign of Cancer is said by Djwhal Khul to represent the anima mundi, or the soul of the world, the essential Divine consciousness of all manifested things.)
          William Blake is seen today as having been a prophet of the twentieth century physical and spiritual repercussions of the mechanization which had begun
in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries.  Neptune, the esoteric ruler of his chart, dissolves the boundary of time, while his Sun sign of Sagittarius is esoterically the sign of intuition and, therefore, prophecy.
           Having lived and died as a pauper, William Blake was not recognized and
acclaimed as an artist until well after his death.  It was not until the early twentieth century that Blake's name was popularized by T. S. Elliot in an essay written about him.  With his relatively recent increase in popularity, William Blake continues to fulfill his Cancerian purpose of raising mass consciousness to higher levels.

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copyright 1996 by Adele Wilson

          PLEASE NOTE: The following elaboration on the experience of the soul-oriented person with Scorpio rising has been excerpted from pages 26 to 27 of An Esoteric Journey through the Zodiac, the Inner Meanings of the Signs, by Adele Barger Wilson.  

          In Libra a fine point of balance is acquired between Soul and body.  When this has been accomplished, the Scorpion experience is entered, and a surge of spiritual energy is imposed upon the personality.  This arouses the entire lower nature, which becomes determined to take its last stand against the Soul.  This last stand against the Soul and the tests and struggles which follow are necessary in order for the personality to learn, through experience, that it will never defeat the Soul.  In the end, the personality willingly surrenders itself to the Soul, marking the final death of personal desire, satisfaction, will, pride, and all other qualities of the lower self.  At this point, the disciple is ready for the one-pointed Sagittarian experience. 
         There are three signs which test and perfect the personality.  In each of these signs the tests are worked out on a different plane of consciousness.  In Taurus, the tests take place on the astral plane. The final result is that the energy is raised from the astral to the buddhic, or intuitional, plane.  In Pisces, the testing environment is the mental plane, and the purpose is to carry the personal will up to the atmic plane of Divine Will.  ("Not my will, but Thine be done.")  All of the tests of Scorpio, however, take place on the physical plane and are eventually resolved through the illumination emanating from the Higher Mind.  The result is a transfer of energy from the physical plane to the higher manasic plane. 
         Although the tests of Scorpio take place on the physical plane, all three aspects of the personality are tested on this plane.  Each aspect undergoes three tests, giving a total of nine different tests.  The physical nature is tested with regard to (1) sex, (2) physical comfort, and (3) greed for money. The tests of the astral body involve (1) fear, (2) hate, and (3) ambition (which must become spiritual aspiration). The mental body is tested regarding (1) pride, (2) separativeness, and (3) cruelty.  The test of separativeness is concerned with transmuting the natural Scorpionic tendency of isolation from those who think differently.  The basic lesson of the test of cruelty is to learn to use the mind as an instrument of the Higher Self instead of the personality. 
         The testing and trials of Scorpio begin with the process which the Tibetan Master calls recapitulation.  The instinctual tendencies and materialistic attitudes of the past rise to the surface to be overcome.  The sum total of these residual, unconquered personality characteristics is called The Dweller on the Threshold.  The Scorpion disciple must first face these lower tendencies and then gradually transmute them by surrendering the personal will and attuning to the Will of the Higher Self, which is encompassed by the One Divine Will.  When this has been accomplished, the energies of the lower chakras have been purified and transferred to the higher chakras.  The Scorpion, instead of stinging itself, has risen, like the Phoenix, out of its own ashes and becomes the eagle which soars high above the Earth. 

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