…On the spirit of Mars
Spiritus animalis is Latin for animal spirits: It’s “the breath that awakens the human mind.” Not power animals exactly, more the primal instincts that commonly override our better reason. In fact, John Maynard Keynes, one of the most detested men in the eyes of Bitcoiners and gold bugs, once said, “all markets are moved by animal spirits.” What he meant was they were driven up and down by the primal urges we call greed and fear, nothing more, nothing less. When I first heard the quote, my mind was populated with bears and bulls, hawks and doves, whales, crabs, and minnows, not this fang and claw override which supposedly creates bubbles and busts. But there you have it. Animal instincts.
As you may have noticed, the Zodiac is populated with animals as well. Their spirits function quite a bit differently than the way Keynes used it, yet their “breath” still is something that awakens the mind. As an example, when a planet like Mars is in Taurus (which it is at the moment) it doesn’t make it bullish. In fact, according to dignity, Mars in Taurus is seen to be in detriment, which we could say to be “bearish.” But it’s not that simple. We could say that the spirit of the bull is alive in the collective, bringing up the unwavering convictions we may have, readying us to lock horns or even be crazy enough to try and ride it. And when we throw aspects into the mix, the image can change dramatically.
Today, Mars is sextile to Venus (Taurus/Cancer; Aug 3rd). The image could be of a tired bull, resting after a romp with the dragon spirits of Rahu & Uranus, surrounded by his favorite cows in his late Summer pasture. The momentary harmony available with this transit is something we all should take note of. It’s an opportunity to fully restore before the next rodeo with the old cowboy on the 7th (square Saturn).
When Mars is 90º from Saturn, something usually breaks. It’s a conflict between our personal desires and reality. Our precious freedom to roam can start to feel caged. Something snaps. Many of us have sensed this coming, for perhaps our entire lives, and it doesn’t mean the system fails on Sunday, but what it can do is conjure the animal spirits to run amok. The amount of cortisol and the other byproducts of stress that tear throughout our bodies day in and day out could stop us in our tracks. Be aware of the sharp and poisonous creatures. Be good to your back. Stretch often. Do your practice. And most importantly, don’t worry. Oh, how much time we have wasted worrying about the things that never even happened. Our goal is to be aware, not scared by the ‘beware of bears’ sign on the way in.
The animal spirits Keynes was talking about are still stalking us today. The extreme greed and fear that just brought us through another ringer from 2020 into the present is a zoo of evidence. The bears continue to swipe their claws down and the bulls have lost their neck power. The whales continue to patrol the seas of greed and the minnows are gobbled up. The FED remains hawkish and the world waits for the doves. This will all change. The only constant is change. Animals are seasonal creatures, just like the rest of us.
*Find Mars in Taurus in your chart to begin contemplating these spirits more deeply
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