We have a New Moon Sunday night at 26º of Taurus, right ON Fixed star Caput Algol also known as the severed head of Medusa. (For more on Medusa) This could represent a time of ambiguity between the established and comfortable order of the known and what terrifies us. But I don’t know enough about Mesusa’s myth to venture on that one. The Medieval astrologers interpreted Algol in terms of losing one’s head literally but we could also take it in the metaphorical sense.
This New Moon is happening at the end of the fixed sign of Taurus which represents the well established Spring season. Taurus is an Earth sign concerned with accumulating resources and experiencing life through the five senses. The bull has a sensual and primal nature. A New Moon is a good time to set intentions for the month ahead. Set your intentions around anything related to your physical well being and how you go about bringing comfort and ease into your physical space. It doesn’t have to be complicated, in fact simplicity is the key with Taurus (don’t lose your head over this!). It can be about creating a beautiful living space (Venus is the ruling planet of Taurus and she is in Cancer right now) or gardening projects for the coming summer season. How you go about setting up a safe oasis for yourself either externally or internally will help in how you cope with future stress.
We are moving along nicely into mutable energy, with Mercury in Gemini going retrograde on May 18 , and the Sun is going into the sign of the twins on May 21. Things that appeared to be congealed or stuck are moving ahead and soon the pace will pick up. Don’t be fooled by the apparent stillness and soak in the peace while it passes.
Nourish the body, find contentment and beauty for a moment.
Medusa was a beautiful girl who was a wild animal whisperer of sorts. It was said that all the wild animals acted tame around her.
Perseus who is depicted as a hero, was raised on an island in the temple of Athena.
The contrast between these two is that of “civilization” and “the wild”.
In any case, as Medusa budded to womanhood it is said she was very beautiful and desirable, but she was not easily impressed and courted.
There is a version of Perseus’ story that says the king of the island desired his mother and he was against that. The king’s brother was a fisherman who rescued him and his mother from a shipwreck at sea, as they were running from his grandfather or father.
In any case, that king challenged him to deflower (“tame”) Medusa, as an apparent distraction.
He went on that mission, and when he returned the king had forced his mother (rape). In this version of the story he killed the king, put his brother on the throne.
Meanwhile in the Medusa story Perseus had forced (raped) her, quite violently, using his shield to pin her down and so he wouldn’t have to look at her. Some have said that he did this violent uncivilized act in the temple of Athena. In the usual “civilized” manner, Medusa was vilified and Perseus was guilty. In a version of this we are told he eventually went and beheaded her to end the fear that she would exact revenge or what have you.
On the other hand, in the story of his mother, he brought Medusa’s head to to the temple of Athena as proof of something – which in light of the general theme here, we might construe as being proof of the king’s guilt. As rape is not civilized and is a man acting like an animal in terms of his primitive sexual urges.
In any case, it became the myth that no man could look at her without turning to stone. Her eye accuses and testifies against him and demands justice. She was demonized. Did she petrify men who did evil deeds with fear of being exposed as NOT being “heroes”? Most assuredly. And what is any man’s hero journey, except to be validated?
Perseus’ subsequent exploits involve rescuing Andromeda from being sacrificed may have been his attempt at redemption, to cleanse his conscience and “do the right thing.” It’s hard to say, really. Because in THAT story, he sees her bound to the rocks and is attracted (the woman in chains) and we might assume that she was then obligated to him as her rescuer. She was very different than him, Ethiopian. He had Medusa’s head and used to turn her uncle to stone for attempting to lay claim to her (incest and forcing girls into marriages are hinted at here). As for Medusa, we can’t be sure of her ethnicity, but she was clearly very strong, independent, and was the kind of woman who would decide for herself who was the best man for her.
The Hebrews have called the star of Algol “Lilith” historically.
The main lesson of this star, of Medusa (and of Lilith, which we can get into sometime) – is the fundamental nature of evil in humanity, of how a guilty person projects their own evils onto the victim. Medusa sees. Medusa knows. Medusa testifies. And the first thing a guilty person does is accuse HER of being the evil demonic bad thing, increasing the evil they are doing beyond all salvation.
In some cultures even today, women are stoned to death after a man raped her.
That is the ugly truth that no one who is civilized wants to look in the eye. If confronted with it, they freeze up with fear. If confronted with it, their consciences turn to stone and they refuse to look at it.
If we were to explore the story of Lilith and Adam, we’d find that same problem. Especially when we realize that there’s a big problem with Adam’s claim that God put him to sleep and made Eve out of his rib, and that his own daughter was the proper woman for him to have children with. In reality, Lilith was the mother of Eve, and he was cutting her out of the picture. It’s really that simple, and that twisted. Lilith, not being his “flesh and blood” was the appropriate mate. We all know that inbreeding is what causes disease and genetic breakdown. We also note that it was Adam and Eve who were exiled from the garden, and Lilith was not punished or cursed. Yet she is the one who vilified, demonized, etc. See how that works? It was Adam breaking the laws of nature, then the cover up and the attempt to justify and declare himself righteous.
This is all Algol, the eye of Medusa.