Happy Birthday Capricorn
Capricorn – The Goat
The significance of each sign of the Zodiac can be secured by deep thought and meditation upon the symbology of the sign as portrayed in the pictorial representation apart from the written word. Especially is this true of the most meditative sign, Capricorn – whence comes the constant call to delve more deeply into every subject – although the symbols of all signs must be studied to grasp their deeper content. The more occult-minded one is, the richer the rewards in true gold of God, for God and the Zodiac are inseparable.
The tenth sign of the Zodiac is so mighty in its import that we can do no more than hint at its subtle importance, its sublime magnitude, and its major effect to individualize man, making him a soul quickened by the Spirit, one of a great whole, yet with a distant sense of individuality.
Capricorn has several symbols. The best known is the Goat, a thrifty animal that climbs high up the mountain, cautiously moving from crag to crag, seeking the summit. Capricorn looks for the topmost position. Consciously or unconsciously, the inner motive is ambition, which may be used or good or ill. All too often it is used to exercise authority over others and, with patience or with cunning, to secure prestige and power. Therefore, it can readily be seen that the quality and the direction of the soul – allied only with the body, or also making contact with the Spirit – count for more in this sign than in any other, except Scorpio, which is likewise a sign of extremes. Capricorn may not be as murderous as the lower phase of the Scorpion, but it can be cold, calculating, crafty, servile, utterly selfish, and unscrupulous. The extremes range from the black magician to the most selfless, reverential priest or high initiate; from the hardest, most conniving politician or cruel, power-loving dictator to the completely dedicated statesman serving his nation or the world.
The various symbols of Capricorn help to elucidate these vast differences. One is the Crocodile, an amphibious creature, aquatic and terrestrial. Another is the Fish-goat, whose rear is shaped like a fish, its front like a goat. Like the crocodile, the fish-goat is amphibious, as much at home in the water as on land. Both have the faculty to swim in the depths, but on land the crocodile stays near the shore, often in the mud, whereas the goat can climb to the loftiest mountain top. Here is symbolized man’s power to sink into a sea of selfish desires and egotism, or to conquer the lure of the desire world and, realizing truth by transcending the five senses and physical reality, to rise up into the mountain range of spiritual reality. The dualism of Capricorn manifests in the symbology of the amphibious creatures, whose dual attributes portray the physical and spiritual nature of man.
In ancient days, Capricorn was linked with Makara, the Pentagram. H.P. Blavatsky says in the Secret Doctrine: ‘The FIFTH ORDER is a very mysterious one, as it is connected with the Microcosmic Pentagon (sic), the five-pointed star, representing man. In
The tenth sign of the Zodiac is Capricorn, and ten is the number of completion. The constellation comprises a group of stars that forms the figure of a goat. Interestingly, there are twenty-eight stars there, a number whose digits add up to make ten, twice the number of five. Although Gemini rules the hands, we may never too often look at our ten fingers, five on each hand, complementing each other and giving us the power of accomplishment. It is only when the physical and the spiritual in man complement each other that the Capricorn individual’s accomplishments reflect his completion as a whole human being. Capricorn people, who use only the head and seem to have no heart, are the hard type of selfishly ambitious Ego’s, whereas the completed ones have balanced the functioning of the head and the heart.
Still another symbol for Capricorn, as yet seldom known, is the Unicorn, a triumphant being, victor in all strenuous tests. It symbolizes the highest phase of this sign of initiation and of the world Savior. It would seem that in referring to this marvelous, mighty sign of the Christ brought to birth – this Christmas sign, Capricorn – one is presumptuous and is stepping in where Angels fear to tread, yet one must not hold back, for the time is come to speak of the mysteries of God to those who have ears to hear.
No man can become a Christ-man, thereby reaching completion as a perfected being, unless he learns to correlate with the forces of Saturn through Capricorn, because the cradle of the Christ is in this animal sign; hence he was brought to birth in a manager with animals about him. Although many people still express the animal attributes of this sign, do not for a moment think that only animal forces inhere in Capricorn, for there is a side to it so lofty that few save initiates – those who know at firsthand – know of it. What is known exoterically is that Christmas always falls on December 25th, when the Sun is in Capricorn and human hearts are warmed with the fine feeling of good will and love that prevails at this season of the year.
Through the birth of Christ, a new impulse was given to the Earth. Every year, after the entry of the Sun into Capricorn, there is a renewal of this impulse. The esoteric understanding must now become exoteric, the understanding that Christmas is the season of spiritual birth and the most propitious period for initiation into the mysteries of life; for during the Thirteen Holy Nights from December 24th to January 6th, the Christ-etheric forces reaching their greatest intensity and amplitude with the Earth. One of the key sayings for Capricorn is, ‘Let the door stand wide’. At Christmas time, the door from the Earth to the spiritual world stands open wider than in summer. Cancer represents the door to physical birth; Capricorn, the door to spiritual birth, to initiation.
Cancer and the Moon are the Mother-forces; Capricorn, with Saturn, its ruler, are the Father-forces. They confer wise counsel to the human father-principle. In their loftiest expression, Capricorn is the sign and Saturn the planet that stand for the Father-God, who is the foundation of heavenly and earthly existence – a being, almighty, yet related as a Father to his creatures. It was Christ who revealed God as the Father, saying, ‘I and my Father are one’ and ‘I am in the Father, and ye in me, and I in you’. Here a great mystery is elucidated when we are able to see beyond the lower phase of Capricorn and, piercing the illusions of the senses, reach up into the realm of spiritual reality, which underlies as a foundation, though not physically visible, both the heavens and the earth.
A most effective statement is found in the first chapter of Revelation, ‘I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the ending, saith the Lord, which is, and which was, and which is to come, the Almighty’ – the archetype of all archetypes. Only as one clearly realises that Saturn is the force of the ‘first and last’, the beginning and the end, can one know the plan and power of the Father. The lowest and the highest forces in us, the physical body and the Spirit-man with which the physical body is correlated, are powers of God himself. This lowest and highest – this physical body and its Father-force above, the Spirit-man; this human and divine man – have reign and representation through this mighty sign Capricorn and its ruler, Saturn. It was in the Saturn Period, the first of the seven great periods of evolution – of which our Earth is the fourth – that there were laid the beginnings of man’s physical body and the germinal forces for the sense organs, the sense of vision coordinating with Capricorn. It will be in the last period, the seventh, that the Spirit-man will be perfected.
Since the Christ is one with the Father, no man becomes a Christ-man unless he has taken the chastening yet loving Father-forces of Saturn and Capricorn that instill strength of will and power to endure. The pedagogy of pain, about which most men complain, has a high purpose. Elevation in evolution is secured only at the price of pain. Freedom from the thrall of the senses is gained through the apprenticeship received from Capricorn and Saturn, the forces of the double five. In meditation on this sign – this Father-force – keep ever in mind the pair of fives, which represent the lower, physical, earthly man on the one hand, and on the other, his overshadowing yet resident Father in heaven, above yet within, the highest part of the triune higher self, which is the true, real being. As you utter the words, ‘Our Father which art in heaven,’ in the most highly occult prayer ever given, strive to gain a growing knowledge of the Godhead power to which you are related as a son, ‘through the glory of his Son, the Christ, remembering always, ‘I and my Father are one.’ Apply these mighty truths to your own soul and learn with growing grace of the presence of the Father and the Son – the divine being of the Godhead – in you.
Through the lower, negative phase of this Saturnine sign are men seduced into a love of power and place. Although intense egotism marks our era, all mankind is in the Christ-crucible of a cleansing that tends to merge the physical with the spiritual in mankind, for the light now shines more incandescently into the darkness, so that the darkness may be dissolved. This is the time to overcome the vast egotism and intellectualism that are creative of the worldly-wise men and our modern civilization, which now produce much chaos, but out of which Christ-unity and order will arise.
In the lower phase of Saturn-Capricorn the soul is seduced through the selfish desires in which nearly all mankind lives to some degree, and through the senses and the brain-bound intellectual forces, the darkness that limits and blocks the light from above. Out of the Luciferic selfish desires comes man’s immense egotism that produces dictators in every sphere of life, from personal relationships to heads of nations; and out of the Ahrimanic darkness comes the seduction of mankind through materialism that produces the vast inertia and inanition of spiritual life and spiritual activity among the masses. This darkness, however, is the darkness before dawn.
Saturn and Capricorn in their lower aspect thus deceive through the senses and give to the undeveloped a distorted sense of values that makes personal ambition and a consuming lust for power the main motivating force of their lives, which may take on a tinge of black magic, as evidenced in some modes of advertising and salesmanship. This tendency to wield power over others was markedly manifest in Napoleon, who had the Moon in Capricorn and Saturn in Cancer at the Midheaven. We see in the German chancellor,
It is in Capricorn’s negative manifestation that this thirst for power is so pronounced. Out of it there has arisen our competitive spirit and economic system. In this Saturnine sign is the seat and source of the idea of separateness. Mankind, for the most part, lives and dies in this great illusion of separation; however, it is by development through separation, selfishness, and materialism that man attains to freedom and finally to a true selfhood, an Ego-consciousness that is divine and benign. Man’s apprenticeship must be served in the deceptive light and in the darkness spoken of in Revelation 12:9,12,13: ‘And the great dragon was cast out, that old serpent, called the Devil (Lucifer, the false light), and Satan (the darkness of materialism), which deceiveth the whole world … the devil is come down unto you, having great wrath, because he knoweth that he hath but a short time. And when the dragon saw that he was cast unto the earth, he persecuted the woman which brought forth the man child.’ In the lower phase of Capricorn exists the forces of selfish desire that is served by the use of the brain, which by itself cannot conceive spiritual reality. Man for the most part lives in this great illusion, and he lives there even after death, the victim of the experiences of his earthly life and thought, filled with the same old desires and thoughts. ‘The devil’ and ‘the dragon’ blind the mass of mankind through the blinding false light of egotism and the darkness of the earthly brain. Those souls that are in or under Capricorn but not yet in touch with this sign’s higher phase are unyielding and impervious to firsthand knowledge of spiritual truth. Although many still do not live in the light of the world – the Christ, hid with the Father in the world and in man – be it remembered well that, in the positive phase of Capricorn, there dwells the Father-God, the highest aspect of the Trinity.
These considerations shows us how the lower part, the fish-tail, or the crocodile element of this sign, takes the soul into selfish isolation and the darkness of materialism, there to make that conquest that at last brings a knowledge of the truth – and this knowledge of truth about God, man, and the world comes through the Saturnine pedagogy of pain, unless it is accepted voluntarily. No matter the pain that comes from Capricorn and Saturn, that pain has a true and beneficent purpose. For the aspiration on the path that leads to God and home, Saturn’s pedagogy forms the field of victory over the senses. With this truth our own, in full clear title, we can truly appraise and appreciate pain. We cease to be woebegone and world-weary because of the incessant impacts of grief, ingratitude, and lack of understanding. We see the ineptitude of man, yet also the promise and the power to express his godhead forces in a body of flesh. All these things we see and more, and as a result we cease to waste further forces on the desire for personal position and comfort. Knowing the plan God has for man, we begin to cooperate with that plan. Thus the false light of Lucifer and the darkness of Ahriman – the devil and the dragon – are of service in developing man through selfishness, separation, and materiality, to a sense of the ‘I’ and freedom.
Men do not behold the world in its physical-spiritual reality until the Christ is born in them. When one’s heart has been sufficiently crushed with grief and suffering, then does the light within reveal the light without. No one has the power to know the way or exemplify the way until the light in the head connects one to respond to the higher phase of this sign. Then a light-bearer and world-server is born. From these reflections, we may get a more comprehensive, deeper idea if this sign of the Father and of the inestimable service of Saturn, whom most people take as a thorn in the side because of his pedagogy of pain. Anticipating the fruit of Christ-freedom that such pain produces, we realize that in this or a future incarnation we shall cease to be the prisoners of our physical senses and of the lies and errors of earthly life in which there is little if any conscious radiance of the Spirit. Through disciplined work, we set our souls free from the deception of flesh and blood, and from the darkness of the intellect unlighted by the Christ-consciousness. We learn from Saturn and take from him those forces that would give us the power to pierce the delusion of the senses and of the brain.
Today the world dwells largely in the luring Luciferic light of the lower egotistical self and in the Ahrimanic darkness of the intellect unlighted by Spirit-truth. Out of this chaos there will be resolved cosmos, the divine order of God. The forces of chaos will be reduced through the light that now shines in the darkness. As we search at firsthand into the majestic God-man sign, Capricorn – the sign that enables man to use his body for the sake of his Christ-soul and lift these to the Spirit, usually through the pedagogy of pain – can every one of us become effective leaven to help the Lord of our planet to leaven the lump. Then do we share his burdens and become light-bearers; we no longer despise pain or recoil from it, but allow pain and sorrow to speak, for they have a message that lights the path for us. We should suffer our souls to understand, so that our intellect may be informed of the truth.
To realize the sooner the truth that brings freedom, we must direct our feet toward the path that leads to reality. This physical world is not the realm of truth, but the scene of the senses, the world of form, which is illusory. Within every human being there is present a power that lights the way to walk. This power is the light of the solar man, the Christ-born man; and this sign, Capricorn, brings him to birth, after vast travail in and through its lower phase of egotism and materialism. When egotism is expended and materialism is overcome, then altruism and spiritual intelligence may manifest. Egotism is the King Herod who seeks to kill all infants, so that the Christ-child might be slain. No force is more effective in thwarting the growth of Christ-soul than personal ambition, the egotism of a negative Capricorn. Aquarian altruism makes it possible for the Christ-child to grow and mature. Yet must this child come to birth out of pain and pressure of the earthly senses in the animal-related body – stalled in a manger, of a truth. The Christ is born and cradled in this sign of the Father, Capricorn, even though he matures and becomes ‘all things to all men’ in the next sign, Aquarius. As we transmute egotism into altruism, we create, with growing force, a sovereign power, which is the divine will of the Father. Those who have found the way know the divine will though the power of a positive Saturn.
Saturn, as Chronos, is Father Time, the Guardian of Time. As the Cosmic Recorder, it is the planet of cosmic memory. The Saturn-beings have recorded everything that has happened since ‘in the beginning’ the Saturn Period, when human evolution began. Saturn imparts to man retentive memory. It is also the producer of a silent power, the fruit of patience through many lives of helpful hindrance.
Saturn can be hard and sinister, cold and calculating, power-loving and intensely ambitious as well as servile. It can, moreover, be very diplomatic and often dissembling, which is often the right name for diplomacy, for no true tact or touch faculty comes out of lies and errors born of egotism. It becomes a different Saturn when matured in the positive phase of Capricorn and watered spiritually in the next sign Aquarius. Such a process produces a wholehearted outgoing love for all mankind, without an iota of exclusiveness, through the union of will with truth, to brings the wisdom of the love of the Christ. Those who have touched these potent powers of the Father and the Son, can declare the acceptable year of the Lord and proclaim that a New Day is near when the devices of the devil and the old dragon shall have been pierced and their lies and errors, the fruit of egotism and cold intellectualism, will be recognized. Mankind will be lighted with the torch of truth, which brings spiritual intelligence and makes the dedicated, responsible server, ranging from the devoted father of a family to the president of a nation. Consciously or unconsciously, Capricorn natives have within them a power of authority over others, and it is this mode of mastery that brings them to a place of power or responsibility, onerous or otherwise, in the family, community, nation, or the world. The sense of power, authority, duty, and responsibility in Capricorn becomes admirable only in proportion to the actual amount of Christ-consciousness manifesting in the individual. The greater this power, the finer and better the success, at least spiritually and eventually practically, for it should be etched on the mind that the dual factors of practicality and spirituality inhere in Capricorn in a marked degree.
Capricorn endows its natives with the quality attributed to the goat: the ability to climb cautiously from crag to crag and from summit to summit, ever ascending, the mountain peaks being their happiest habitat. Although Capricorn confers the powerful inner impulse to progress both materially and spiritually, there is in its negative phase a social ambition to place and power that demands satisfaction and impels one to seek its realization in obsequious conduct. This may descend to downright servile fawning, a cringing quality feigning utter humility, such as Dickens depicted in the character of Uriah Heep, who ever washed his hands with an invisible soap, unctuously commenting, ‘I am so humble.’ But only the weak, undeveloped persons in this sign stoop to such abject fawning to curry favors from others.
The weakness of Capricorn persons is their thirst for power, fame, honor, admiration, and the desire to be known by the so-called great. Christ Jesus referred to them as Pharisees who love the uppermost place at feats, the chief seats in the synagogues, greetings in the markets, and to be called of men, ‘Master, Master.’ Ideas of place, power, prestige, and personality are strongest in Capricorn, which inclines toward snobbery and love of mere fleshly form and exterior conditions. This sign often denotes a person animated by strong ambition and egotism. The power of the Father-force is inherent in Capricorn, but when the darkness of the brain is strong, this sign manifests an intense desire to wield power that brooks no competitor in its field of action.
True enduring power comes to Capricorn Egos in proportion to their moral and spiritual growth. As the intellect becomes lighted by spiritual understanding, they cease to react to the gall of jealousy, covetousness, and the fearsome suspicion that someone is about to steal their place, power, or prestige. As they overcome the darkness by the growing radiance of the Christ-light, which shines in that darkness, they gain positive power and make proper progress. The paradox of Capricorn is the paradox of Scorpio, for heaven and hell, light and darkness inhere in both signs in their opposing extremes. A negative Capricorn person lacks the power to perceive the spiritual Christ-light that shines in the darkness; he cannot discern spiritual reality, and in his egotism and self-sufficiency he believes his ideas and views are the only right ones, the only truth. So strong is the force of form in this Saturn sign that the Spirit often remains untapped and unknown. Such a state of spiritual dearth, if accompanied by ambition for personal place or power, makes some of the wealthy men of finance. If wealth disappears or if prestige is lost, it is the negative Saturn-type of Capricorn-person that resorts to suicide. If the soul has indeed been sold to the devil, there might be tendencies that border on black magic. A compelling power to cheat oneself or others issue from Saturn’s darkness. This is not reversed until the light of the truth of Spirit reveals to man that there are other worlds than the physical world, that back of the form, of which he is informed by the senses, there is the life that builds and sustains the form, and that it can be perceived only by developing latent higher powers. Salvation and immediate progress come as the Christ-light breaks through into the brain-bound personality. Not till then will Capricorn individuals become self-effacing and thus true servers, be it in industry, finance, government, or religion.
The mighty power of the Father-force in Capricorn is only tapped and expressed when the native of this sign realizes the light that shines in the darkness, for once this light is comprehended, the highest attainments are achieved through the action of the Christ within, who is all-wise, all-loving, and all-intelligent. As our era passes, the master men of Saturn will come with their selfless executive-directive forces to make life worth living, whereas at present selfish Saturn souls seek to gain power over the soul and substance of myriads of men. When the humanitarianism of Aquarius is added to the patient persistence of Capricorn, Christ-altruism is added to the Father-force. Then, as Christ said, “I and the Father are one”. Egotism changes to altruism as the Capricorn native is lighted in the head and heart. The secret of Saturn and Capricorn is that one acquires virtues and takes on the soul of a sage only after one has passed through the tests, the hindering restrictions, which this sign provides. One realizes the weight and worth of Saturn after passing through the Job initiation.
Whereas Sagittarius is expansive, Capricorn is contractive and cohering. The idealism of Sagittarius is brought to concrete action in Capricorn in virtue of the power of persistence and the genius of concentration. The high altitude that allows the spiritual attitude of Sagittarius to manifest can be made concrete and truly practical in the highest positive expression of the Saturnine sign, Capricorn. It may be stated that nothing truly practical exists save as souls and spirit manifest in the forces of form. Just as this sign can render a soul impervious to the Spirit, so can it shed on it the highest spiritual light, depending upon the stage or degree of the soul’s evolution. Most souls born in or under Capricorn remain blind and deaf to the Spirit, because their intense ambition is turned earthward by way of their genius in the purveyance of goods, or in political life.
Conversely, it should be noted that one may err in clinging solely to the spirituality of this lofty sign, without planting one’s feet firmly upon the earth. In
This tenth sign of the Zodiac corresponds to the tenth house, which, in a map of the heavens, is the Midheaven, the vital point indicative of one’s integrity, one’s honor, which predicates one’s worldly standing and prestige, one’s good name among men, and one’s true spiritual name with God. Capricorn improves the true status of its natives as they improve their moral and spiritual quality. When their destiny is affected by the growth of the soul from within outwards, they become powerful organizers for good and rise far above the difficulties of their early environment and those connected with the parents, almost invariably involving either some distinct painful disharmony, or fateful separation.
Someone unaware of the zodiacal forces may get the impression of reticence, if not of aloofness, which is, however, the way self-restraint manifests in Capricorn, when it is not animated by the next sign, Aquarius. Capricorn has an uncommon capacity and love for work, spurred on by immense ambition. Capricorn Egos will work for their own interests without stint or stop. They are apt to stumble on the rock of trying to keep up with the Joneses. In the unevolved phase, self-interest and the secret desire to gain and wield power are great; we see these traits exemplifies in politicians, businessmen, financiers, and all those who are opportunists and ‘use’ others, that is, those whose moral and spiritual growth is not commensurate with their vast ambitions. Whenever ambition is turned toward earthly, personal ends, it becomes dangerous for Capricorn souls; they are toppled, as was Napoleon. Even Woodrow Wilson, with his Sun and Mercury in Capricorn, his Moon on the cusp of Capricorn-Aquarius, and Saturn at the Midheaven in Cancer, failed to achieve his ideals which, as time will prove, were more Jehovistic than Christ-Aquarian, for they fostered separatism, notwithstanding the external organization of nations within the League.
All Capricorn natives become positively endowed with permanent place and power as they align themselves with the Christ, as the spiritual side of their nature blossoms, leading them to transmute their egotism and separateness. No sign is more earnest or steadfast than Capricorn, none more inclined to meditation, the soul diving even deeper for food and facts, none more rigid in self discipline and the fulfillment of duty and responsibility. This rigidity and stability, however, which are an asset in some domains, may become a hindrance in situations requiring change. It is a poor boast to say, ‘You will always find me the same.’ We are on Earth to make progress, and Capricorn natives make progress through incessant perseverance. Their development is advanced as they sacrifice their interests and personality to the Spirit within saying, ‘Father, not my will, but thine, be done.’
One of the most notable geniuses of all time was Michelangelo, who had Capricorn rising. As an architect, sculptor, painter, and poet, his creativity was stupendous. Architect as a human art is possible because man bears within him the cosmic memories of the ancient Saturn Period, when divine beings impressed the laws of Saturn upon the primeval, spiritual form of the physical body, which was to become an organism in space. The architect has the power, possessed by the ancient Greeks in an especially high degree, to liberate the spatial forces which are within him, and to externalize them out.
Some well-known men born with the Sun in Capricorn are: Benjamin Franklin, Sir Issac Newton, and Rudyard Kipling. William Gladstone, for so long the Prime Minister of England, had the Sun and Mercury rising in Capricorn. In the field of finance and business, Andrew Carnegie and John Wanamaker stand out as Capricorn-Sun natives. The musician Robert Schumann had Capricorn rising. Louis Pasteur had six planets, including the Sun, in this Saturnine sign, all in the third house, and as a result of his investigations, people now fear bacteria as much as in the Middle Ages they feared ghosts. The very fear of bacteria produces the most fertile soil in which the germs can breed.
Not until Capricorn souls overcome their fear can they achieve true health. Among the most characteristic negative qualities of Capricorn and Saturn are fear, gloom, pessimism, depression, and melancholy. Light and darkness pervade these souls. When they ride high, they are jolly, but when depressed, none are more gloomy in mind and soul. They should exert every effort to gain an even balance. When melancholia and morbid states of mind and feeling saturate and sink these souls, they are prone to numerous ailments, such as sclerotic conditions, digestive disorders, colds, and diseases of the skin and joints. One ruse often resorted to by Capricorn persons is threat of suicide if they cannot immediately have their own way.
Their worst enemy is despondency; the lack of buoyancy is in direct contrast to the optimism of Sagittarius, which is ruled by Jupiter. For this reason it is important that they be informed of the science of the Spirit, which elucidates life and gives it profound and rich meaning, purpose and value. They should know, too, of the very real presence of discarnate earthbound, ignorant human souls who try to impress their own wretched state of consciousness upon those who are negative and despondent, so that they become enshrouded in deep depression or wish to commit suicide. The mind of a person strong in Capricorn is so searchingly scrutinizing, in a gaze incessantly turned inward, that, if at all negative, it inclines to morose moods and gloomy brooding, whereas in positive persons it leads to fruitful meditation and eventually to an elevation of consciousness and to evolution, which discloses the light that was ever shining in the darkness. Out of the inevitable destiny that this sign invariably confers – oppression, limitations, frustrations, delays, and denials – out of the darkness of this formative, soul-building force, there comes at last the light of the loving, living Christ.
For the northern hemisphere, the Sun stands lowest on entering Capricorn, and then it begins its ascent at Christmas. It signals the birth of the Christ, the Spirit of our Earth, who is spiritualizing the planet and all it holds. The Moon, however, has its ‘fall’ here. The reflected light of the Moon wanes, so that the true light, the spiritual light of the Sun-Son may shine once more with raising, refining power. If we concentrate our thoughts on these facts, we come to see the true meaning of matter in relation to the Spirit. The form, and the life behind the form, become manifest.
No one is so keenly aware of formality, ceremony, and appearances as a Capricorn person. To live wholly in the outer, physical activities is to drown the voice of truth; and this often happens to Capricorn natives. They live in the social and legal framework of life but ignore, or are oblivious of, the truth of Spirit; they love the formal rather than free expression. Here are the keel and bulwark of the social organism, just as in this sign are also the keel and bulwark of the physical body, that is the skeleton and the skin. Capricorn rules the skeleton and all joints, especially the knees, endowing the body with stability and flexibility. This framework, a thing of marvelous wisdom, was built through aeons of time by the beings of the Spiritual Hierarchies. Without the skeleton and the wonderful joints of the knees, men would have no stance, no stability, and no power to move and to act. Every time we walk, we walk in virtue of the divine beings and know it not! On the other hand, the bony skeleton is the hardest, most solid, mineralized substance in the body, and it is the symbol of death. Thus we see why too many Capricorn natives become ossified, lose resilience, are dead to truth and to the life of the Spirit. They incline to custom and take to politics, business, law, worldly routine, and the established way of life, averse to change. In its higher activity, however, Capricorn makes true priests and wise administrator; then worldly ambition and the desire to rule others are replaced by a spiritual vision innate in this stabilizing and service sign. Cowardice, a characteristic of uncontrolled Capricorn forces, is aptly indicated by the expression ‘weak-kneed’, and this sign’s arrogance and egotism are brought out by the saying that they ‘refuse to bend the knee.’ The really lofty natures in this, or any other sign, humbly bend the knee and bow to the Father whom this service sign represent.
Individuals strong in Capricorn and Saturn progress in evolutionary development in the earth-school as they learn to take on true humility and reverence. Then are egotism, self-centered ambition, and disbelief overcome. If they are not overcome, however, the more Capricorn natives flourish outwardly, the more are they apt to wither inwardly. It is through the forces of flesh and form, the outer ceremony and show, the material, external values, that they become bankrupt in the sense of the Spirit. As they give the Spirit the right place in their lives and realize its power, then do they become light-bearers and true ‘doers of the word,’ for executive, directive, and organizing skill is found in this sign to a high degree. As they rid themselves of the negative force of competition, they become highly cooperative, capable, and self-sacrificing servers. With their admirable courage and sense of responsibility, individuality and collectively, one can of them what Christ said as recorded in St. Matthew 20:25-28
Ye know that the princes of the Gentiles exercise dominion over them, and they that are great exercise authority upon them. But it shall not be so among you; but whosoever will be great among you, let him be your minister; And whosoever will be chief among you, let him be your servant: Even as the Son of man came not to be ministered unto, but to minister, and to give his life a ransom for many.
All human beings, be they strong in Capricorn or not, may apply the maxim given by Rudolf Steiner as an exercise for the month of January, when the Sun is in Capricorn: ‘Courage becomes the power to redeem.’
A Saturn Song
Man suffers most from what he fears
He dreads the most what ne’er appears
Thus does he often bear far more
Than God for him did hold in store.
It is keeping with Capricorn that there be presented here a summarizing paragraph, dictated by the author at the very close of his earthly life, twenty years after this book was written. Age had taken its toll, the thread of life was tenuous, but he spoke with the simplicity of one standing at the threshold of the spiritual world, surveying the harvest of his life’s experiences:
Capricorn, on the higher level, is the sign of the statesman, and on the lower level, of the politician. It is both influential and affluential. It makes for the rich merchant, the company promoter, the very astute businessman, wealthy on the one hand, and sometimes, stingy on the other. Capricorn is characterized by the grave and the serious. All serious work must be done by the agency of this sign. It calls out earnest endeavors and looks to the elderly person for any assistance needed. A long period of waiting is required by these souls. Capricorn is a culmination of destiny forces one cannot dodge, especially those demanding patience to endure delays. Souls strong in this sign wish to set their house in order and to keep it in order; and they excel in organizing. They are always ready with wise counsel. Age, maturity, and wisdom are representative of the father-principle. The highest business of this sign is that of being about the Father’s business.