In Fourth Way tradition, sometimes the master of a Fourth Way school will administer a shock to their students. The shock takes the form of the teacher, in effect, holding a mirror up in front of the student and showing (or telling) the student: “This is what you are doing. This is how you are being. Knock it off!”
Now the student at this point can feel sorry for themselves. The student can feel that the teacher (who they have invested with great reverence and trust) is somehow just picking on them out of spite, and thereby completely ignore the possibility of growth that this shock presents.
Or the student can say, in effect: “Yes, you’re right. I see now that I have been behaving in this way and I thank you for showing me this aberration of behavior. I know (and you know) that I am more than that, better than that, and I thank you for showing me the error of my ways and all the energy that I might have used for feeling sorry for myself, or being defensive about my behavior is now released in freeing myself to be a better me, a healthier me, a happier me, a more constructive me.”
Thane of Hawaii was the only Fourth Way teacher I’ve ever known and his teacher G.I. Gurdjieff was the only other Fourth Way teacher I’ve ever heard of. Neither of them are around any more.
But in the absence of those teachers, I think that sometimes life itself can and often does give us a shock. I just never thought it would or could be on such a massive scale as the world has just experienced with the election of President-elect Donald Trump.
Okay, shock has been administered!!!
Now how are we going to respond to it? Are we going feel sorry for ourselves and blame the racists and sexists amongst us? How does a racist country elect and re-elect an African-American as president? And if people just don’t want a woman president, how come Hillary won the popular vote?
The Universe has administered us a shock, and if we wish to go to our rooms and feel sorry for ourselves or try to justify our past behavior, then we are missing a tremendous (“Believe me! Tremendous!”) opportunity for self-reflection and self-transcendence.
As some of you know, I keep a daily journal of my dreams and also remarkable events of the “waking dream” of my daily life. On September 18, I had a sort of lucid dream which had these words clearly written out: “Hillary Clinton Victory”.
I didn’t know quite what to do with that information. Do I tell everyone how psychic am? (Good thing I didn’t do that.) I just kept it to myself, but it made me feel pretty safe about the outcome of November 8th’s election.
Although it did seem kind of suspicious to me that if Pluto in Capricorn was really having its way (which transit lasts from 2008 to 2024), why would it resolve things so nicely in favor of the established way of doing things? It’s more Pluto’s way to blow things up and plow through things than to let them settle nicely into the way they have always been.
So Pluto (i.e. the Universe) is having its way with us. And Pluto is the planet (yes, it’s still a planet!!!) of transformation and rules the sign of Scorpio, “the most intense sign of the Zodiac, [which is] associated with sexual activity and with the symbolism of death and rebirth” (astrograph.com). And Capricorn is the astrological sign of institutions. like the Democratic Party, the Republican Party and The Prosperos, to name three.
So my unconscious mind was setting me up for a fall. And I, like much of the rest of the world, fell hard.
But now we need to take advantage of this shock, not in navel gazing or post-mortems, but in taking a good hard look in the mirror presented to us so that we can transform our institutions: The Democratic Party, The Republican Party, the Electoral College, The Prosperos and whatever other institutions you can think of.
And while we’re at it, we might try on a little self-transformation as well. If we don’t, the Universe (in the form of Pluto or whatever form it takes) will do it for us.
–Mike Zonta, H.W., M.
Editor, Bathtub Bulletin
More on the Fourth Way; https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fourth_Way
More on Shock in the Fourth Way: https://thecasswiki.net/index.php?title=Shock_(Fourth_Way)
More on Pluto in Capricorn: https://www.llewellyn.com/journal/article/1566
Key Warnings (per astrologer Steven Forrest)
- Self-righteousness (Capricorn)
- Madness (Pluto)