Solstice Report
New York, Friday, June 22, 2007

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Photo by Priya Kale.
Photo by Priya Kale.

Rewriting the Daddy Contract
By Judith Gayle

AS WE bubble in this potent energy of the final Saturn-Neptune opposition, the one that will, by consensus, shift our relationship to the world and redefine our reality, it's important to get a sense of the bigger picture. You've probably heard the story about the frog swimming in a pot on the stove, the fire coming to a slow boil, and Froggy not noticing the heat increasing by small increments until it's too late. Well, we're the frog and surely we've noticed and are ready for a leap -- where will be land? That's the question. We need to step back, take advantage of the emotional Cancer retrograde and stew a bit in our own juice to decide where we're going.

Way back when I learned the basics of astrology, I was told that Saturn was in cahoots with the Lords of Karma. Those were the guys that MADE you learn the lessons, slowed you down to a crawl and pounced on you with circumstances that either softened your thoughtlessness and straightened you up or pounded you into the dirt. (Well, maybe not that bad...but uncomfortable, surely; lessons learned the hard way.) Being a tail-wagging Sagittarius, I wasn't much interested in slowing down or picking up the mess I left in my wake. I was born all fire and air with a couple of water planets smack on major angles, and no Earth at all, save Cappy rising. It took a while to notice that Somebody put Saturn on my "self." (Whoever designs these things has a warped sense of humor.)

One of the early lessons I learned was not to pray for patience, of which I was sorely in need, because I would draw a situation that required I LEARN it; and my instruction was less about patience than about how Karma works. Learning patience provided me a critical life-skill, and proved to me that Saturn, even though not a "best friend," is not the enemy either -- and perhaps, at long last, it's time for a new octave of Saturnian energy. And that's where Neptune has come in, these last months.

Saturn is the major Daddy planet. It seems inequitable that the Moon is the equivalent Mommy planet, influencing us from the soft, emotional, subconscious parts of ourselves and providing little protection from Saturn as the hard-edged, in-face, go-to-yer-room authoritarian. Easy not to like the Saturn figures in our lives. Easier still when they've gone tyrannical. And that's where we are at the moment, that's what's boiling the water under the pot -- that's what Neptune is dissolving, its dreamy energy hiding a corrosive underbelly that's stripping away the mindless need to follow blindly just because we're supposed to, but...and this is the's taking our sense of security with it. Daddy keeps us "safe," but what happens when he turns abusive? Authority everywhere has gone rogue, has been corrupted -- as it is designed today, it is quickly being outgrown.

If we need examples of that, we can find them everywhere we turn. Our schools are no longer institutions of goodwill designed for discovery and learning, but more like police states -- indeed, you're likely to find security guards patting down your kids as they enter a campus and police presence too often strolling the halls. Sadly, our need for "safety" turns us, too often, into brutes.

Meanwhile, the largest of the authoritarian models -- church and government -- not only vie for our absolute obedience, but join hands to attempt control of our thought process. The Pope has recently used a little "spin" to assuage the church's guilt about decimating the indigenous populations that were "brought to civilized thought" in centuries past. In his view, those folks were longing for Catholicism. Somewhere in the back of my mind, reading this, I can hear the echo of George Bush telling us how Iraqis were longing to overthrow Saddam, awaiting our soldiers with flowers and gratitude.

Indeed, the Bush administration has given us too many examples of corrupted authority to enumerate -- George is a cartoon character in his desire for unitary powers. Of all the presidents in the last decades, this is one who would be king. He has pitted himself against the Constitution with the curtailing of habeas corpus and today we discover that his "signing statements" have circumvented the intention of lawmakers on a regular basis, not to mention evidence of numerous violations of the Presidential Records Act. Tip. Iceberg. Yadda.

Interestingly, the Republicans are known as the Daddy Party, and they take pride in being tough customers. They howl that government is too big and fiscal integrity is important, which is a slap at the Mommy Democrats who would spend money in projects for the disadvantaged -- and which proves that one man's "nurturing" is another's "enabling." Interesting that a model of governance would describe itself in parental terms, isn't it? But it works on many levels. Consider the prototypes, largely drawn: Mommy will take us to swimming lessons, buy us little floaties for our arms, encourage us to put our face in the water and frame our eventual swimming certificate to prove how proud she is of our accomplishment -- Daddy will throw us into the lake, watch to make sure we don't stay under the surface for more than three minutes and, if required, kick off his shoes and save our sorry ass, making us feel overtly guilty for failing to swim like Mark Spitz (which he says he did when his own father threw him in the lake) and covertly pissed for being endangered in the first place (which only our therapist, and perhaps our mate, will ever know).

From the last couple of Republican presidents, we should be able to connect dots to how they work by now. They are hawks who funnel huge sums of money into the military-industrial complex and bloat necessary legislation with earmark projects that safeguard the conservative notion that what was drawn in the 18th century is good enough to last forever, unchanged. They increase government bureaucracy and big spending, even while decrying same, and, as the mood of the nation shifts, Democrats are eventually required to come in and clean up the mess -- and spend so much time doing that, that their own projects are watered down and unimpressive. The GOP Daddies are the hunters, not the gatherers -- they don't care much about what's happening in the cave while they prevail. And now they've become the essential dysfunctional Daddy, a simplistic, immature caricature of the male prototype, swinging a club and gone tribal.

Father knows best? Not lately.

What happened to the Daddy model? It's the much-anticipated and needed changes; they're here and they're leaving no "old model" unscathed. The Mommy model, perhaps a tad too indulgent (or co-dependant) needs reworking as well. We're not changing into new iterations of old models, we're changing the whole paradigm -- and the Saturn-Neptune energies demand that we balance between national security needs, assessed from a new creative space, and the importance of our assaulted civil rights and individual responsibilities. We're being asked to pay more attention to our societal needs and less to "spreading democracy" -- democracy begins at home. We must begin to balance between short term self-interest and the understanding that world cooperation and a win-win scenario create the global stability that offers long-term self-interest.

It's time for the Mommy model and the Daddy model to take time for pillow talk, to decide how the Third Entity of their combined energy will proceed in the world. Goddess energy has resurged in the last years, putting its stamp on each of us. It's here to stay, established in men and women who welcome in the required changes, while authoritarian patriarchy is dwindling because of its punitive and abusive excess. We are eager for new dialogues about what a balanced use of power looks like. We're out of patience with the old models, and we're ready to see it differently.

It won't be difficult to find examples of this reflected in your life. If you pause and look around, you'll find yourself in dialogue with authority...job, home, relationship, kids, government, church...constantly. If that conversation produces fear in you, you will give your power away to it and have no platform upon which to get your needs met. If it comes out of your mouth from time to time, unbidden and sounding like your own parent, you need to renew your contract with the past, do a little digging around for what you still haven't addressed or forgiven. If you look to it for safety and rescue, you're likely to be disappointed because nothing outside of yourself has the capacity to impact your field of intention -- and authority, as currently drawn, is not working for your welfare, anyway. If you feel crushed under the weight of authority in any way, please stop and consider that, with a few legal exceptions, authority requires our agreement in order to hold form. WE are the ones who give it credence; we are the ones who "recognize it." If that no longer works for us, then WE are the ones who must change it; it will not fix itself.

Abuse of authority must stop -- we must insist. Respect for authority is earned, and that is what Neptune and Saturn have been talking about in this long conversation of theirs, letting us listen in. All you dads out there, reading this, know that. And I'd suppose another thing you know is that the underlying context of authority must always be a compassionate and thoughtful design for the well-being of the whole. Simply, the highest authority on planet Terra is love. If our broken systems don't reflect that, today, then we have nothing worth keeping...and much to work toward. It's time for a new contract. Let the pillow talk begin!

CREDITS: Managing Editor: Priya Kale. Webmaster: Anatoly Ryzhenko. Proofreader and Fact checker: Sara Churchville. Horoscope Editor: Jessica Keet.

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