Tuesday early night, November 8th, at 2:30am, I began watch of the total lunar eclipse. I set the front porch chair directly under the Beaver moon beam, just as the ominous shadow began to overtake the top quarter. This was to be the start of life transforming events, according to Pam Gregory, astrologer. So many events of the heavens seem to be unprecedented life changing these days. Noting the constant chaos and curve balls thrown each moment, we all can attest to the instability and wonder.
Since experiencing a huge rent increase in my quartz stone house, changes will come for me too. The search has begun for my next home, in Austin or not. Coupled with my seniordom, the looking is heady, uncertain, coupled with the unsettling mystery of aging. How does one age gracefully?
As the shadow crept over the silver disc, a deep quiet blanked the neighborhood. No one, save for a blinking lighted bicyclist, was out. Distant highway traffic and the usual low buzz of insects muted. I made licorice mint tea, closing the screen door quickly to prevent Raphiel from slipping out. A few blocks away, coyotes roam Waller Creek.
The shadow now covered the moon by half. I pulled a soft blanket about me. I’ve lived independently for decades, often unpartnered, on this corner lot in a single home, appreciating the gift of the surrounding freedom. So, a big box senior living situation doesn’t fit, although it worked well for my mother, who experienced each stage of elder care, from independent living to hospice.
I brought out a few crystals and a hunk of obsidian to soak in the energy of the heavens. It is said that some ancestors feared solar and lunar eclipses, believing the phenomena to be indication of the anger of the gods. I'm not sure which ancestors, considering European, African, Asia, Native American cultures and countless more created and honored the deities of the skies, understanding the inherent power of doing so.
As I begin the quest my next landing place, balancing the holy terror with trust is a constant challenge. Many in my age group are mystified about it, others too frozen to discuss, still others have cemented a plan years ago and usually involve their offspring. Yet, there are hundreds of women in Facebook groups who are searching for a community, a place to age safely, with dignity, to be of value and use. Where elders can gather collectively, while living separately. There are many posts, but solutions to the housing thing are slow in coming.
Now holding a finger of rye whiskey with a few sprigs of rosemary, I look to the eclipse. The last sliver of moon is quickly being covered by its burnt orange blanket. The silence within a silence expanded. Allowing my spine to curve and relax, I recite from my Kindle the 1000 Eternal Praises to God. Similar in form to the divine sahasranama, a recitation of the appearance and nature of God, this spiritual tool for self-realization was created by Eon for the English tongue.
Eternal praise to God, who was never born.
Eternal praise to God, who cannot change.
Eternal praise to God, who believes without evidence
Eternal praise to God, who thinks without thinking.
Eternal praise to God, who takes nothing without requiring it.
Eternal praise to God, who creates the past, present and future at all times.
I’ve recited the 1000 Praises for two decades, on and off, always bringing comfort, suprise, delight and awe. And so, this litany, along with other random occurance of faith, exploration and communing with others will bring about a resolution of my next landing place, started in earnest under a transformational full moon eclipse.
If you'd like to discuss and exchange thoughts about aging, , or know of housing innovations, resources or forming communities, I'd love to hear from you.
And, please come to have a intuitive or crystal table session. You can book online here.
Full eclipse of the beaver moon over Austin. November 8, 2022. Pic credit: Florence Wang.