Capricorn is associated with achievement, practical application, method, ambition, material resources, finances, government, initiation, and discipleship. Esoterically it is said that the spiritual “goal” is identified in Sagittarius, and then in Capricorn we choose to walk the path. The highest soul purpose of Capricorn is “to create heaven on Earth,” and it is no accident that we celebrate Christmas and the birth of the Christ during Capricorn season.
The words “discipline” and “disciple” both have their origin in the Latin verb discere, which simply means “to learn.” So if Sagittarius has identified the spiritual goal, Capricorn’s job is learning how to get there. The whole idea of discipleship implies that there is a practical methodology to achieve a tangible result. Through our soul’s experience in Capricorn, we learn to build a very real “stairway to heaven.” So what would this “heaven” look like? Rather than thinking of it as a physical location, it can be thought of as the blissful state of nirvana or samhadi that comes after many years of applied discipline in a yogic or monastic tradition.
Capricorn is the sign of mindfulness, method, and skill cultivated through patient application and practice. The power that was gained in Sagittarius must now be applied in practice. The essence of Capricorn lies in the most appropriate use of resources, in particular spiritual resources, to achieve success. This is the key to understanding both the fear based reactions and love-based responses of Capricorn. Esoterically, Capricorn is said to be the most mysterious sign of all, and we will only fully come to understand the true meaning of Capricorn when humanity has made a great leap in consciousness.
[quote cite=”~ The Tibetan”]The basis of the astrological sciences is the emanation, transmission, and reception of energies and their transmutation into forces by the receiving entity. … It is all a question of developed reception and sensitivity.[/quote]
Of all twelve signs, Capricorn is most associated with both the best and the worst of human character. To understand this, we need higher consciousness and an understanding of energy. Capricorn is said to rule governments, politics and banking. The current sorry state of the world’s banks, greed, avarice, corrupt politicians greedy for power, global inequalities in wealth, health and resources, has been attributed to the “negative” or fear-based expressions of Capricorn. Yet esoterically this is the sign of the initiate and the disciple! How can this be?
The soul in Capricorn is learning “right use of resources,” including our inner resources: our physical, emotional, mental, and spiritual energy. We cannot learn the power of our own energies and become skilled in their use from books. We can do so only through experience, practical application, and diligent practice – all Capricorn qualities. Through this, we develop the consciousness that results from deep self-observation where we become skilled at watching our own energies play out. Eventually, we then begin to see energetic patterns, connections, and deepen our understanding of the nature of energy and the laws of cause and effect.
In spiritual traditions where deep self-observation is part of the practice, students are encouraged to examine their own motivation. This means deeply observing the energies in you that motivate your thoughts, words, and actions, so that you come to know and understand your own driving forces. In this way, practitioners eventually begin to see important connections between seemingly different energies.
For example it is said that anger and love are the same energy and that anger is a lower fear-based expression of love. Likewise, greed and avarice are lower fear-based expressions of compassion. With consciousness, greed transmutes into compassion. If this is so, then it makes perfect sense that the most avaricious of signs has the potential to also be the most compassionate. We can only come to know this for ourselves through diligent application, experience, and awareness.[quote cite=”~ Tenzin Wangyal Rinpoche”]Our anger obscures our capacity to love, our sadness obscures our joy, our prejudice obscures our equanimity, and our greed obscures our compassion.[/quote]
The current state of affairs in the world is a catalyst for human compassion to flower on a scale the likes of which have never before been known, and this is the lesson and the gift of Capricorn. In order to fully understand this, we need experience of how these energy dynamics work in our own energy field, which is why Capricorn is also the sign for skillful method, initiation, and discipleship.
The word “initiate” means to begin something or to be introduced to something. Without an introduction from skilled and experienced teachers, we are unlikely to see these energy dynamics for ourselves. Even Christ and the Buddha had teachers in their youth to point out the path. Next comes the discipleship, or discipline of applied practice. This means keeping our attention on the path. If we follow the energy of our greed, it takes us outside of ourselves, pursuing the object(s) of our desire and trying to fill a bottomless pit inside. It is this fear-based expression of Capricorn that leads to Capricorn’s worst reputation.
If we really observe ourselves deeply when we are experiencing greed, we can see that underneath it there is anxiety, fear, and maybe even terror. When we experience fear and terror, we naturally want to get as much as we can to take care of ourselves and our families. When our Capricorn friends succumb to fear, they may mistakenly chase after more worldly wealth and power, naturally trying to acquire and ring-fence resources for their own use, which gives them a false sense of security and short-lived peace of mind. Once they become well-versed and skilled in the art of energy dynamics, we will see that our Capricorn friends are transformed into the most generous and compassionate people on the planet! The Capricorn soul realizes that greed and compassion are but two expressions of the same energy and has the skill to transmute greed, avarice, and the base emotions of desire into compassion, love, and the highest qualities of humanity.
If you have Capricorn Rising, you can consider yourself to be a Capricorn soul. Your true skill and power lie in your innate focus, intelligence, and diligent method, which give you the ability to trace the energy of your emotions and desires back to their source. Rather than following the outward acquisitive direction of greed, by turning your attention inwards, observing your energy and tracing it back to its inner root, you will see it transform into compassion – first for yourself and then for others. From this connection to your innate compassion comes a deep and lasting sense of achievement, fulfilment, and spiritual nourishment. You then have an endless resource from which to practically and realistically build heaven on earth.
Ruth Hadikin – Soul Astrologer
Karen MacKenzie is working on a series of astrology inspired paintings using goddesses from different cultures. For more information about the symbolism in this print and to view other works in her ongoing series, check out her website, Karen MacKenzie Art.