In this article I look into some dimensions of the Moon archetype from an evolutionary perspective, using the birth chart of Charles Darwin’s as an example.
Moon Archetype – Case study – Charles Darwin
Charles Darwin had the Moon in the 2nd House in Capricorn ruling Cancer on the 8th House cusp. The Sign on the 4th House cusp is Aries, ruled by Mars in the 10th House in Libra forming a Crescent square to the Moon.
The observed evolutionary condition of Charles Darwin’s Soul was the 3rd stage of the Individuated state.
This is the birth chart of Charles Darwin:
These symbols reflect an emotional nature which comes into the current life fundamentally repressed, and an egocentric structure or personality which is not in contact with the inner emotional states existing within the Soul. There is a prior defense to emotional pain, in which the Soul has chosen to build barriers in order to avoid the impact of intense emotions including pain, grief, guilt, anger and disillusionment. The Moon in Capricorn and the 4th House ruler being in the 10th House reflect an inner state of mourning originating in experiences of loss within family relationships and also specifically children, defining how the individual inwardly feels and its overall tone and patterns of relatedness with self and others- Moon 2nd House, Mars Libra 10th House. The conscious self or ego – Moon – is permeated by feelings of guilt. Guilt correlates with Capricorn, and Capricorn correlates to natural guilt originating in transgression of natural laws, and to induced or artificial guilt, originating in judgement or persecution in name of manmade laws or morals. There are various reasons for natural guilt in Darwin’s Soul, coming from prior lifetimes into the current life. Some of the most important reasons or basis for natural guilt in the birth chart include:
* Guilt based on being away from the family home because of travels the individual desired to make in prior lifetimes. His Soul would have felt that those lengthy travels were very important. When coming back home he would have found that things had gone pretty bad while he was away, sometimes even finding that a loved one, a child, had died. This is reflected in Virgo in the 9th House, Jupiter conjunct Pluto in Pisces, SN in the 5th House square Chiron in the 2nd House, with the SN of Chiron in the 4th House Aries square the Moon in the 2nd House Capricorn; also the Moon forms a biseptile to its own SN in the 5th House, and a septile to Pluto; Ceres in Pisces is conjunct Pluto and Mercury, and Mercury is the ruler of the Pluto polarity point in the 9th House; Neptune/Saturn 12th House Sagittarius inconjunct the SN.
Travelling was connected with the natural desires in Darwin’s Soul to expand the horizon of knowledge. However, those desires were compounded with various other desires of egocentric or narcissistic nature, including self-interested desires for acclaim or recognition of his own felt specialness-SN in the 5th House Taurus, Venus in Aries; or a delusive feeling of being given a mission ‘from on high’ in connection with knowledge that justified his privileges – Lucifer in the 9th House in Virgo opposed by Mercury/Pluto and Ceres in Pisces, and trine to the SN.
On another level, these types of crises and traumas were based on or conditioned by a consciousness that looks for knowledge or information outside the self, in contrast to what could be an orientation to look for answers in the inner world or through inner pondering. This can be seen in the SN ruler, Venus, being in the 3rd House in Aries, Pluto being in the 3rd House, with the stellium of planets in the 3rd House, and Mars in the 10th House with the Moon in Capricorn.
Charles and his wife Emma had ten children, and two of them died in infancy, recreating loss as a means to access the unresolved inner mourning that defined the current life personality and the inner states experienced on an ongoing basis-Moon.
* Guilt connected to other types of personal loss in experiences of collective trauma involving the death of groups of people through plague or disease. This is reflected in the NN/Uranus conjunction in Scorpio 11th House, Chiron 2nd House Aquarius square the Moon’s Nodes, the Moon in the 2nd House in Capricorn. Guilt originates in Soul desires to be a healer or to help other people heal, but inwardly felt that he did not have necessary knowledge in order to be of help to the group or community. The guilt is based on the feeling of limitation of the knowledge, and all the inner reasons that had prevented the Soul from having more knowledge or actualized capacities.
* Guilt existing in the Soul for sexual reasons. There are various dynamics that are a source of guilt coming from prior lifetimes that are connected to sexuality, based on a dominant sexual nature at an instinctive, basic level, with a predominant masturbatory orientation, and how the Soul’s sexuality has been conditioned by patriarchy. Synthesizing, these dynamics include:
(i) Dynamics involving a lack of discrimination about whom to be sexual with and whom not, relative to the actual reality of people involved. In this dynamic ‘consequences’ are not fully considered because of being carried away by glamourized instinctual attractions-Venus in the 3rd House Aries, as the ruler of the SN in the 5th House Taurus, Mars in the 10th House Libra;
(ii) A chapter of its own about guilt originating in incestuous unions, and within this, incestuous unions that resulted in children being conceived or born. This resulted in trauma for the offspring and the mother, because of judgement, projection or degrees of exclusion by patriarchal society. This can be seen in many symbols in the birth chart but to me the essential symbols to consider are the Mars/Moon square with Mars in the 10th House Libra, ruled by Venus in Aries 3rd House conjunct Vesta in Aries in the 4th House – Venus being the ruler of the SN 5th House Taurus, Uranus in Scorpio conjunct the NN, and also Saturn/Neptune Sagittarius 12th House inconjunct the South Node. Incestuous dynamics with daughters in prior lifetimes can be seen also in these same symbols, and the psychological consequences for development of those daughters in those lifetimes. Incest with sisters can also be seen in Venus in the 3rd House in Aries conjunct Vesta. In essence many of these dynamics involved a narcissistic lack of concern about the actual person to be sexual with, and a feeling of omnipotence or not acknowledging natural limits to the own desires. This is of course the SN in the 5th House Taurus, ruled by Venus in Aries, that inconjuncts NN/Uranus in Scorpio. Love exists in many of these attractions, even deep love in some cases, however, it is expressed through a narcissistic structure based on a wounded ‘inner child’ that continues to seek recognition or acclaim, and that is totally subjective.
(iii) Because of the intensity of sexual repression, coexisting extreme desires for sexual liberation have also created experiences of intense immersion into profane and consuming forms of sexuality in some lives. Further, there is a pre-existing orientation to what is called “dark Eros”, or forms of being sexual, sexual desires to explore that which has been repressed, or is forbidden or taboo from the point of view of society. This is symbolized in Mars 10th House, ruler of Venus in Aries that in turn rules the SN in Taurus, Uranus in Scorpio, Lilith Rx Taurus 5th House conjunct SN, and Capricorn in the 2nd House cusp.
In connection with the sexual nature of the individual, and the sexual dynamics that are a source of natural guilt, a core underlying dynamic has been one of projection of unresolved emotional needs, and affects and feelings that have been repressed and/or dissociated – Moon Capricorn 2nd House ruled by Saturn/Neptune 12th House Sagittarius trine to Venus. These symbols correlate with basic emotional needs that have not been met in childhood creating intense inner states of insecurity that have been repressed. Prior traumatic experiences of loss have induced a response of dissociation. Affects and feelings that have been dissociated in connection with mother figures have been projected or displaced into relationships or attractions to women. Thus, the emergence of the repressed/dissociated sexual and emotional energy, that is accessed through anima figures in Jungian terms, has produced perceptual distortions and glamourized images, fantasies and thoughts that have fueled the attractions. Many times the connections with women have involved shared memories from prior lifetimes at a subconscious level, including very deep and permeating mutual imprint from more ancient lifetimes. There is a traceable story in the types of relationships with women from natural times that then continued to meet in patriarchal times, many times involving a series of unresolved issues and intense conflicts. Patriarchal sexuality, and patriarchal family structure, have nothing to do with natural sexuality and natural family structure. In Darwin’s life, it appears that he was more or less totally committed to his wife and family, and after he married he was always at home. It appears he had an active sex life with his wife for eighteen years or more. Since Darwin married his first cousin Emma, one manifestation of the karmic theme of incest were Darwin’s intense or even excruciating inner questionings about the biological inconveniences of incest or inbreeding, whenever one of the children was sick. Again, Emma and Charles had ten children, and two of them died in infancy.
* Guilt connected with distortions of truth, or lies, or biases in the orientation to knowledge or to how knowledge is communicated, and with the use of words or language and thought forms in general. This has been based, on one side, on beliefs the Soul had which represented much meaning and security, and on the other side, on self-interest or a need to preserve a sense or position of authority, or in order to obtain something he wanted from a subjective, egocentric, point of view. This is reflected in Pluto 3rd House, Pluto polarity point 9th House Virgo, SN 5th House Taurus, and it is confirmed in many ways in the chart. Jupiter and Mercury are also in the 3rd House, both conjunct Pluto in Pisces, Venus 3rd House Aries rules the SN. Thus, an element of personal delusion, a delusory sense of self-importance or grandeur, or a glamourized self-image have allowed, in the past of the Soul, inaccuracies in the narrative and self-narrative in self-serving ways, relative to the individual’s need system. The thinking process has operated in these dynamics as a means to satisfy instinctive needs or egocentric drives.
* Guilt based on a psychological state of futility, which in some lifetimes has prevented doing necessary efforts for the Soul to evolve in the ways intended, through procrastination, self-undermining behavior, and dynamics of avoidance or denial. This is reflected in the Pluto polarity point in Virgo with the Moon in Capricorn in the 2nd House, the South Node in Taurus inconjunct Saturn/Neptune, Mars in the 10th House in Libra. The futility originates ultimately in the unresolved states of mourning, the inner wounding of the Soul resulting from many prior lives traumas, confusion about the causal connections between choices and outcomes – Pluto in Pisces 3rd House square Saturn/Neptune 12th House – and the fixity of the desire nature and the ego structure equaling resistance to necessary change. The futility is part of a psychological state of depression with ruminative self-reproach – Moon 2nd House Capricorn conjunct SNs of Venus and Mercury, with Venus and Mercury in the 3rd House, etc.
Together with the reasons for natural guilt within the Soul, there is also induced or artificial guilt, based on repressive morals, doctrines or religions, coming from the consensus of the society of birth, and the family of birth, which have intensified the feelings of guilt.
We know that the underlying inner causative dynamics of the guilt patterns have been repressed – Capricorn. However, these dynamics, and associated memories, have been erupting into conscious awareness during a series of recent prior lifetimes. This is symbolized by Uranus in Scorpio conjunct the NN within the New phase.
Intense unresolved states of mourning and unresolved PTS exist within the Soul, coming from many prior lifetimes, originating in trauma of loss of family relationships, and children. This is also symbolized by Uranus conjunct the NN in Scorpio, with the Moon in Capricorn in the 2nd House, and is restated by the Moon conjunct asteroid Orpheus, and asteroid Proserpina being Rx in the 8th House at 3° Leo, conjunct Isis, both squaring the Moon’s nodes. In his current life as Charles Darwin the Soul re-experienced emotional loss, including the devastating death of a beloved daughter when she was ten. Darwin wrote in a personal memoir “We have lost the joy of the household, and the solace of our old age”. Darwin had also gone through the loss of a baby son. Darwin’s mother Susannah died when Charles was eight.
The Moon being in Capricorn in the 2nd House square to Mars in the 10th House reflects that the Soul chose to be born through a family defined by consensus values and beliefs in which his emotional needs as a child would go unmet, and where, instead, he would receive the impact of judgments including religious judgments, and a disciplinarian education, all this as an outer reflection of the inner state of emotional repression. The reasons why Darwin’s Soul would choose to be born in this type of family are compound. On one hand, the emotional repression of that type of family would resonate with the inner state of repression and repressed mourning within Darwin’s Soul. Further, there is an evolutionary need to minimize emotional expectations from other people or any external source, as reflected by Cancer on the 8th House cusp ruled by the Moon in Capricorn 2nd House. Also, being born in a wealthy and educated English family allowed the young Darwin to access types of knowledge and experience, including having the right social contacts and funding capacity for his voyage on the Beagle. This was in some way necessary in light of what the Soul intended to accomplish in terms of delivering a message or a book to the Victorian society and to the world at large that would deeply and massively impact on fundamental collective belief structures. This demanded from the Soul’s point of view, to be able to validate the ideas to be presented from the point of view of formal consensus disciplines, as a means to be ‘readable’ but also to appeal to the scientific communities. In turn this demanded having the right type of education, credentials and relationships. Delivering the outcome of many lifetimes of observation of Nature was a pressing issue within Darwin’s Soul. In this sense, choosing his family in that lifetime served in that way for those intentions. This is reflected basically in Pluto in the 3rd House with Mars, its lower octave, in the 10th House Libra, Mars being square to the Moon in the 2nd House in Capricorn.
The mother would have been more or less emotionally and sexually repressed, controlled, emotionally unavailable and not nurturing for the child at a physical and emotional level. Susannah Darwin, or Wedgwood, was already forty-three or forty-four when Charles was born. “She breed doves at their home, and she explained plants and flowers to Charles when he was young. But her health had never been good, and through the years of the marriage she became increasingly weak, and withdrawn from the young children”. It appears that the cause of the mother’s death when Charles was eight related to “gastrointestinal symptoms that were probably a sign of either a severe ulcer or stomach cancer” – Charles’ Moon square Mars, Moon conjunct the SN of Pluto in Capricorn – and also Charles would manifest severe gastrointestinal symptoms, within a series of health issues Darwin faced during his life.
At the time of the mother’s death transiting Ceres was Rx conjunct Charles’ natal Moon; the transiting SN of Ceres was conjunct the natal Saturn, ruler of the Capricorn Moon, within the natal 12th House. Transiting Mars was conjunct the natal, Lunar SN, and most important, transiting Pluto was still in Pisces, within the 3rd House, forming an exact inconjunct to natal Mars in the 10th House which is the ruler of the 4th and 5th Houses. The transiting Nodes were at 25° Taurus and Scorpio, forming a square to Charles’ natal Sun in Aquarius. These symbols reflect that intense emotional insecurity would be triggered within the Soul through the crisis involved in the loss of the mother which in turn would trigger associated memories of prior-lives traumas.
However, with the natal Moon being in the 2nd House, in Capricorn, a need or desire has been in place to control or repress his own sensibility and to restrict the focus of the egocentric consciousness, and to ‘shut down’. Darwin wrote in his Autobiography “My mother died in July 1817, when I was a little over eight years old, and it is odd that I can remember hardly anything about her except her death-bed, her black velvet gown, and her curiously constructed work-table”. In his “Autobiographical fragments” written much earlier, he wrote: “when my mother died I was 8 ½ years old and Catherine one year less, yet she remembers all particulars and events of each day whilst I scarcely recollect anything (and so with very many other cases) except being sent for, the memory of going into her room, my father meeting me – crying afterwards. I recollect my mother’s gown and scarcely anything of her appearance, except one or two walks with her. I have no distinct remembrance of any conversation, and those only of a very trivial nature. I remember her saying “if she did ask me to do something”, which I said she had, “it was solely for my good”.
In Darwin’s chart, Cancer on the 8th House cusp reflects the intensity of the inner states that have been repressed, and the overall intention to metamorphose the egocentric structure, which would need to occur through cyclic experiences of death and rebirth. The need for such intensity of experiences has been created by the fixity of past egocentric orientation. The fixity of past egocentric orientation is symbolized by the SN in the 5th House in Taurus and the Moon in the 2nd House in Capricorn, and Cancer on the 8th House cusp. This has been a causal factor for repressing the emotional states in order to keep heading toward the ego defined goals despite experiencing emotional pain. Uranus conjunct the NN in the 11th House reflects the Soul created need to experience traumatic levels of intensity in order to unlock the emotional states existing within the Soul, and allow the egocentric structure to restructure itself in a new way.
Cancer being in the 8th House cusp, the SN being in the 5th House Taurus, ruled by Venus in Aries, Mars in the 10th House being the ruler of both the 4th and the 5th Houses, and the Moon being in Capricorn in the 2nd House, reflect the intensity of desires for the mother that is denied access by the law of the father. With ‘law of the father’, I mean the patriarchal family structure and sexual regulation thereof, correlating with the Capricorn archetype. It is internalized and reproduced since it constitutes a fundamental basis of patriarchal social structure. It is a sexual economy, since it tells where sexual desire can be placed, and where it cannot be placed, relative to the family structure in which any individual is born, despite the natural affective and sexual nature of the child. This includes of course the prohibition and taboo of incest with the mother. This is what Freud called the Oedipus complex. Patriarchal regulation of family and sexual desire frustrates to some degree the child’s capacity for joy. There is anger at the father because the father archetypically represents norms. Anger against the father is repressed for the sake of maintaining and reproducing the social order. In Darwin’s chart, the crescent square between the Moon and Mars demonstrates the internalization of the law of the father leading to being defined by a state of lack that is symbolized by the Moon in the 2nd House being in Capricorn. Given that the SN ruler Venus is conjunct Vesta in Aries in the 4th House, and the Moon in the 2nd House is conjunct the SN Vesta, both in Capricorn, natural sexual desire for the communal mothers in pre-patriarchal times now became desire for ‘this’ woman who happens to be ‘my’ mother. Because the communal ‘mother’ became a nuclear family ‘mother’, the word “mother” originally referring to a series of women, became a word referring to a specific individual female in each case. Thus, sexual desire was placed in the conflict of either desiring the mother against the law of the father, or accepting the law of the father and repressing sexual desires for the mother.
With the NN of the Moon being in the 11th House Scorpio conjunct Uranus and Chaos, ruled by Pluto in Pisces in the 3rd House, the Soul has already attempted to metamorphose and subvert the prior limitations of the ego structure by totally revolutionizing its existing organization on all levels. Given that the Sun is in Aquarius in the 2nd House, and the Uranus/NN conjunction occurs within the New phase, the intention to revolutionize self continues to be in place for the current lifetime. Why then, did the Soul of Darwin need to create for that lifetime the ‘controlled’ or ‘repressed’ and ‘depressed’ type of ego structure or personality symbolized by the Capricorn Moon? In a few words, I would say a reason lies in the Soul’s need to proceed with extreme caution and prudence. This requirement seems to be a consequence of the level of repression and conditioning, as it coexists with the intensity of desires for liberation. The intensity of the desires to metamorphose, and to disorganize prior personality dynamics, implies a danger of totally destroying the individual’s sense of self. This could translate potentially, for example, in personality disorganization, disassociation or psychosis, as reflected in Uranus Scorpio conjunct NN ruled by Pluto in Pisces with all the Pisces stellium. It is only by means of extreme caution that the Soul can become aware of what needs to change at a personal level, and effect the transformation. The Moon in Capricorn in the 2nd House ruling the 8th House Cancer, relative to the NN in Scorpio in the 11th House implies a Soul commitment to emotional transformation translating into a restricted sense of experience in which self-awareness is limited or confined to that which needs to decay and ultimately die in the personality on a moment to moment basis.
The potential for levels of disorganization or disassociation is implied because of the Soul desires to discover the universe within, and to evolve the egocentric structure. Bottom line Soul desires to discover the inner universe are reflected in the Pisces Pluto and stellium. In Darwin’s life, this would manifest in the ongoing internalization of consciousness from a perception of variety in the phenomenal and natural world, to the inductive and intuitive grasping of very general patterns and laws about how species have come to exist. It is further reflected in the necessary use of imagination and fantasy by Darwin to generate models that led to the evolutionary theory. Also, and in direct connection with the Moon in the 2nd House in Capricorn, these desires manifested within the mourning state as desires to inwardly communicate with the Souls of those who had departed too soon. “We have lost the joy of the household and the solace of our old age,” wrote Darwin, days after the death of her beloved daughter Annie. “Oh that she could now know how deeply, how tenderly we still do and ever shall love her dear joyous face.” Given the symbols in the chart, Darwin may have had dreams in the astral plane based on those Soul desires.
Because of the Mercury/Pluto conjunction in Pisces, 3rd House, is Balsamic, and given that Uranus is conjunct the North Node, the ongoing process of formulating his theory, must have involved cyclic intellectual crises in the organization of the material, needing to start over and over again, and experiencing confusion as a result. Because of the underlying dynamics of futility and self-defeat, the temptation existed at every point to leave the task unfulfilled, and to abandon himself to confusion and futility. The sense of personal identity can be affected through the impact of the subconscious material that is erupting into consciousness that may leave the individual unintegrated and disassociated. Thus, we can see the type of ego structure represented by the Moon in Capricorn 2nd House as a means chosen by the Soul to restrict the focus of conscious consciousness, to ground the sense of self in the embodied experience, even by means of physical pain. A type of ego structure that does not allow much for escapism, avoidance or alienation, because it is inwardly in contact with very uncomfortable issues, dynamics and states, that threaten to create chaos or trauma at every turn. This results in a type of ego that desires to be actively involved in its life or that desires to be responsible for its life and its ongoing inner states. This is quite different than living in a world of pure theory or scientific exploration. However, Darwin did in fact postpone much inner exploration ‘in the name’ of science and his focus in his career – Capricorn – based on his sense of having special mission to accomplish. While doing so, he was all along the way confronted by his own inner darkness, and his own limitations, and called back to himself by the bodily experience of illness. Capricorn correlates with reflection, and in time, reflection allows for understanding. Again, reflection involves higher cognitive functions and promotes impulse control. The embodied experience, and the experience of physical and emotional pain, was being used by the Soul to create a type of ego that allows the Soul for a more realistic consciousness, relative to the potential embodied and concrete outcomes of every choice or action, in connection with the causal inner dynamics. Also, a type of ego that could be determined and persistent in face of seemingly unsurmountable difficulties – at least from his subjective point of view – and that would live a very simple life most of its lifetime at home, in order to concentrate the efforts in both family and career.