Being Authentic with Jupiter
A weekly NPA article series
By Ari M Wolfe
Pessimism and Optimism part II
I’m surprised that it’s been this many weeks and I haven’t once made reference to the famouse “the grass is always greener” line. This is of course a Jupiter thing.
Yes, that quote reflects the opportunistic side of Jupiter, but I want to continue here with the theme of pessimism and dissect some deeper undercurrents of the “not here but somewhere else” kind of attitude. After I do that I will return to investiaging the meaning of optimism and bring in some more interesting astrological correlations!
Not here, not now
The truth is, Jupiter in our chart is where we can under appreciate anything in life. This under appreciation expresses by way of always seeking somewhere or something else other than right now. The core of this seeking and perpetual dissatisfaction is based on the perception that the current reality is limiting and restrictive to the freedom needed to live in one’s truth. Thus, what’s implied is that the current reality requires one to be unfree and is restrictive to one’s authentic movement in life. What implied is that right here and right now is something to escape because a soul cannot be true to it’s nature.
The psychology of alienation, not belonging, perpetually en-route from somewhere to somewhere keeps a soul restless and inwardly believing that arrival does not exist. Existentially, this is actually an incredibly lonely kind of psychology. The Jupiter archetype generally has an outwardly optimistic and jolly attitude towards life: the levity of a traveler, problems are easy to solve, higher picture, larger perspective type of mentality. And yet on the inside there is often an internal irritation and need to escape, to get out to someplace better and thus an unaddressed internal lonliness.
On the one hand this seeking quality is useful, especially during certain phases of life where we simply need to play out a more youthful enthusiasm to explore and gain experiences. If that is resisted it can feel like precious opportunities are just flying by. Yet on the other hand if this seeking becomes a habit, it can amount to a life pattern of never arriving. It’s like eating but never digesting. Relating but never listening or being truly heard. Having but not really enjoying. Working but never achieving. It’s no wonder that gambling addictions are common in charts with strong Jupiter placements. It’s a way to always have something to look forward to. The same can be said with going on the next spiritual retreat or seeking the next relationship etc.
The psychology of irritation and restlessness often manifests by way of consciousness being seemingly bound to something it truly wishes to escape and be away from. If there’s somewhere better to be, then being right here can be incredibly irritating. There are three ways a soul deals with that within the Jupiter archetype:
- Falling back on known ways of communicating, relating and interacting with the world. This might look like maintaining a certain optimism or “it’s all good” kind of attitude but only as a way to not actually drop in to the authentic moment. There can be an external facade of authentic but true relationship is actually missed because the inner attitude is one of staying “above” and not really connecting to one’s immediate reality
- Overt dissatisfaction in the form of telling everyone what they should think, the right way to live, the right way to understand life. Because the soul believes itself to not where they ought to be, then they will have to be the teacher to make everyone else learn the way to be such that the soul can feel better about being where they are. This can result in a habitual teacher identity: always being the wise or knowledgable one in the room, always having answers. The teacher identity is not necessarily because of an overt identification with “knowing”, but because of a need to somehow reconcile with a deep inner sense of a soul not wanting to be where they currently are. In fact, I would suggest that at the core of the insistent “know it all” attitude is a defense mechanism protecting the soul from a deeply internalized belief that here isn’t enough and thus the inability to appreciate and learn more from this present moment.
- Talking about somewhere or something else, endlessly. This can be the most irritating because, while there might not be any attempts being made to change anyone, consciousness is fixed on the idea of there being something more and it will simply not let go of that. Remember that Jupiter makes everything BIGGER. So dissatisfaction can just be magnified big time.
I recall many years ago in my early 20’s I had an incredibly deep yearning to see angels, to meet my spiritual teacher, to experience what I deeply knew to be beyond the ordinary world everyone seemed to believe in. I sat with my friend during a meal and, without her consent, proceeded to talk about my discontent and dissatisfaction with my ordinary life. She got up and moved to a different table! Her getting up to move was actually enough for me to become self-aware and realize what I was doing. In fact, in that moment I become incredibly conscious of how I was creating separation and missing out on life because I was so insistent that there must be more to life than what meets the eye. I also woke up to how alienating I was making everyone else feel! I have a Jupiter Neptune conjunction, so naturally I am inclined to spiritualize and seek the transcendent, the ultimate meaning in life. And yet if I constantly regard the “holy” as other than the “ordinary” then I create a false duality and never ever find the holy.
Jupiter is where we can make others feel alienated and “not spiritual, fit, wealthy, aware, adequate enough etc”. If I’m complaining about my dissatisfaction with my life as it is, then this can be taken as an indirect insult to whatever and whoever is currently in my life! Jupiter is where we can become incredibly dissuasive, alienating, insensitive, dismissive, talk/think/run over the reality right in front of us because we’re looking too far ahead to see and appreciate what’s right now.
Optimism as living in the moment
As I wrote last week, optimism can be defined as being open and conscious of the opportunities that simply are available right here and right now. To me, the attitude of optimism is literally the opposite of alienation, discontent and the need for something better somewhere else. An optimistic attitude recognizes that the principals of reality are applicable right now. It seeks the wisdom of life, knowing that the tao is always operative. In this awareness there’s an inherent curiosity and joyful anticipation of “what’s next”. This anticipation does not take one out of the moment, rather it is a more full expression of living in it.
I was recently playing with a child who literally saw every moment as an opportunity to have fun. He saw some left-over wood from a bench I was building as an opportunity to practice his skateboarding balancing skills. That wood wasn’t designated to be an object of play, no one said that’s what it is for. Rahter, this boy, in his optimistic attitude towards life, saw the abundance of opportunities in front of him right now and completely went for it.
How often do we miss the opportunities for life and living right now because we are either waiting for some perfect ideal (Sagiattarius square to Virgo) or because we are too in our heads about how it should logically work out (Sagittarius opposition to Gemini) that we are end up missing the spontaneous and intuitive flow of the moment.
Another example: When I walk my dog friend, I notice that everything is exciting and interesting, like an endless “yes”.
When I stop looking for the “way” and I turn towards what is available to me right now I always find that a synchronistic flow of possibilities for growth, healing and expansion opens up for me. When I live my life with what is immanently available to me in this moment I experience life as incredibly relevant and freeing.
Sagittarius, Taurus and Cancer
Consider that Sagittarius forms an inconjunct to Taurus and Cancer. All together these three signs in relationship to one another are what astrologers call a yod (150 degree relationship in both directions. See image). Yods represent awkward and seemingly irreconsilable energetics that can only be resolved and integrated by just doing it and letting go of figuring out how. Lets explore this and you’ll see what I mean!
Sagittarius is about expansion and growth. Taurus is about stabilization, internalization and embodiment. Cancer is about safety, nourishment and the energetic experience of being at home. You can see how this can be an issue! Both Taurus and Cancer speak to a certain level of being here now; they are both about how we live and settle down here on Earth as human, biological, sensual or emotional beings. Whereas Sagittarius is yang, mutable fire which, as we know, can be incredibly restless in seeking more more more. The yod between these three signs speaks to this tension and implies the very gem of optimism embedded within the Sagittarius/ Jupiter archetype that I am writing about now.
The Sagittarus Taurus Cancer yod teaches us that the journey is actually at home, right where you are, in your body, where you get your needs met, where you can settle and be included, be nourished and cared for.
In some ways I would say that Cancer is the most opposite signs to Sagittarius in terms of Cancer being about a deep feeling of inclusion and belonging. Cancer is home, and belonging is at the core of home. We can actually say the same about Taurus which is about inhabiting one’s sensual experience of life in this moment; the ability to feel, receive, to live right now. So, for the expanded consciousness of Sagittarius to embrace the challenge of this yodal relationship with Taurus and Cancer is to come full circle back to right now. The journey without distance, the path that leads to where you started, the pilgrimage to the most intimate place there is, the green grass that is currently growing under your feet, wet with the moisture of the breathing earth, growing and alive in this very moment.
This yod relationship doesn’t mean we shouldn’t travel or follow our intuitive guidance to go where life is calling us, rather it’s an invitation to become aware of how we are moving. Can we arrive before we get there? This is a beautiful paradox and of course if we have already arrived, then our travels must not be about getting somewhere as much as it is about living more fully, authentically, honestly, sincerely as we truly are.
Jupiter is where we can really appreciate life. It’s where we can see the inherent opportunity for growth and wisdom inherent in all life experiences. With Jupiter we sit by the river and uncover the principals of the tao. If we humble ourselves, we can learn these lessons everywhere we go. If we are wiling to know our lives as a pilgrimage then life will always show us more and guide us along.
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