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Just after the third quarter moon rises, shortly after midnight, the lighted portion points downward, to the sun below your feet. If you look at a last quarter moon high in the predawn sky, you’re gazing out approximately along the path of Earth’s orbit, in a forward direction. It appears at its highest in the sky at dawn, and sets around noon. After the last quarter phase, the moon begins edging noticeably closer to the sun again on the sky’s dome. Fewer people notice the moon during the day from about last quarter on, because the sun’s glare begins to drown the moon from view. Dane Rudhyar called quarter moons "crisis" times. During World War I, Daniel Chennevière adopted the name "Rudhyar," a cognate of several Sanskrit words including the name of the god Rudra, associated with wind, storm, and the hunt. The root "rud-" means "to cry or howl" or "to be red or ruddy;" "raudra" means "wild." Rudra was called "the archer" ("śarva," from "śarv-," which means "to injure or kill"). As "one who can kill the forces of darkness," Rudra was sometimes regarded as the eliminator of evil and usherer of peace. The adjective shiva ("kind") was euphemistically applied to him, and thus the theonym Shiva originated as an epithet of Rudra, and the two names are often used interchangeably. In other contexts "rudra" can simply mean 11, and "rudraksha" (the eye of Rudra) is the berry of the rudraksha tree and the string of prayer beads made from those seeds. Rudhyar thought of himself as a "seed man" of New Age cultural evolution. His association with Theosophism began in 1920 when the society's headquarters in Los Angeles commissioned him to compose music for them; in 1930 he married Marla Contento, secretary to independent Theosophist Will Levington Comfort, who introduced him to Marc Edmund Jones ("the dean of American astrology" who developed the seven categories of horoscopic patterns or distributions of the astrological planets around the zodiac, -- the Splay, Splash, Bundle, Bowl, Locomotive, Bucket, and Seesaw shapes), who instructed him in astrology, and he began to think in terms of bringing together astrology and Jungian psychology.
Rudhyar postulated that the stars did not cause the effects seen in human life but were pictures synchronistically aligned to human beings; they detailed psychological forces working in individuals but did not override human freedom in responding to those forces. He called his new interpretation "harmonic astrology" and later "humanistic astrology." His "The Astrology of Personality" was published in 1936 by a Theosophist friend Alice A. Bailey (who coined the term "New Age"). At the first and third quarter moons, we're at a half-way point in the waxing and waning hemi-cycles. In the last quarter phase, as seen from above, the moon in its orbit around Earth is at right angles to a line between the Earth and sun. The moon is now three-quarters of the way around in its orbit of Earth, as measured from one new moon to the next. A last quarter moon looks half-illuminated, which means the sun and moon are at right angles, in the astrological relationship known as a "square." This is no resting place. Squares mean either change or fall out of rhythm with a turning world. During the last quarter's waning square, we're prompted to find a new direction. The "something wrong" is generally inside, the change requires a mental adjustment, some shift in our thinking, our intentions, our beliefs. Whatever occurs at the quarter moons, we're invited to see it as two forces in conflict. Something wants to move; something else resists. This tension seeks its release in change, involving struggle or assertive and decisive action. Forces in square don't work together easily. One blocks or thwarts the other; the other must reorient its direction to get what it wants. Squares bring stress but also a potent thrust of energy that makes necessary changes possible. Quarter moons bring two choices: act or refrain. Either do something you've never done before or stop doing something you've always done. The general rule is that you should take new action at the first quarter and you should stop and rethink your moves at the last quarter. Rudhyar called the waxing square a "crisis in action" and the waning square a "crisis in consciousness." The third quarter moon is a time to let go, release, forgive; a time of emptying self and allowing the universe to take over. It’s not a good time to go after anything new but a great time to improve one's skills and make things work out. Anything you don’t need, or which isn’t working, can be recycled or thrown out it's a good time to clear out cupboards or weed the garden. Inflexibility is both the blessing and the curse of last-quarter births; Rudhyar called them "seeds" of the future order. In "The Lunation Cycle: (1967) he wrote, "Seeds are very tough on the surface, and their main external attribute is unalterability. They are built on the principle of bare necessity and uncompromising self-perpetuating strength."
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