Wednesday, October 28, 2015

The Action of the Dragon

In November the muted Moon will turn from the bottom of the valley of diminished amplitude and begin its 9 year return to maximum.  Most of us are familiar with the North and South lunar nodes as indicators of where a luni/solar eclipse can occur, but another very fascinating quality of the Moon’s motions is indicated in the signs of the lunar nodes.  The South node is always opposite the North so I will just talk about the latter. 

When the North node, also known as the dragon’s head, is in the sign Libra, as it is now, we see the Moon well below the high ecliptic in Cancer and well above it in Capricorn.  At the bottom of this post the first Stellarium screenshot shows the Moon in Cancer for this month below the ecliptic.  You can confirm that it is above the low ecliptic in Capricorn 2 weeks before or after by downloading Stellarium and clicking through the days.

When we say the dragon’s head, or North Node is in Libra we mean the Moon crosses above the ecliptic in Libra.  Wherever the dragon’s head is located tells us where the Moon crosses above the ecliptic every month.  The wild thing is that 'spot,' marked with a little squiggly thing to indicate the dragon's head in charts, inches backward around the zodiac every 18 years.  This cyclic motion that appears against the familiar forward motion of the Moon and Sun is called precession.  There’s a good meditation right there for those who are inclined to go beyond the cookbook predictive recipes.  A good place to begin might be imagining a thread in a story that always plays through all the successive events in reverse.  How does that information gathered from the past inform the way we approach oncoming events?  

Aside from measuring events against this slipping cycle, another analogy could be imagining a character’s view of a parade if they run along the street toward the marchers approaching them.  The interesting thing is that as the dragon’s head backs from Libra to Aries and the Moon crosses above the ecliptic in Virgo (11-10th sidereal hours), then Leo (9-8th), we see it start to climb up toward the level of the ecliptic as it passes every month through the Cancer high point.  

This is another one of those concepts that is incredibly simple but very difficult to conceive in our earth bound minds.  We have become so used to using clocks to measure time that we have lost the ability to imagine ourselves on a planet with a Moon that traces a beautiful path above and below our ecliptic.  I won’t go further into this here.  I do invite you to investigate further and allow yourself the pleasure of knowing the the amazing ins and outs and ups and downs of the Moon.  

One of the best resources for understanding the Moon’s cycle is the NOAA.  They have some great drawings to help picture the motions of the Moon with Earth and how they change over time.  Understanding Tides and the Motion of the Moon

Thursday, October 8, 2015

Finding Out if Earth was Lined up with Sun and Galactic North Pole Oct 6 (2015)

This screenshot is for Oct 6, 2015 and I think it shows the Earth lined up with the Sun and the Galactic North Pole.  

Here is a link to one of the images that led me to this point.  The image is by Brian Fenerty near the bottom of the page linked here.  It shows the Earth going down and up around the Sun in the Milky Way.

And here is a wider view of the sky from the same time and place as the one above.