Sabian Symbols: A soldier derelict in his duty
This universal idea is best expressed through planets in
Scorpio 21 (20° - 21°)
Sometimes we must follow our conscience and face
the consequences of society's disapproval
"Being true to ourselves"
We are tested to find out how deep and authentic is our conscience; there is no escaping this because spiritual values are at variance with the values of society to a significant degree. This is particularly true of armed conflict where normally the individual is forbidden to commit acts of violence because it is morally wrong but the state may demand it of its citizens because it is said to be right when ‘defending the nation’ even at times when the nation is not under attack. When tested on issues of conscience it is good to reflect upon the spiritual benefit of standing on matters of principle.
OBEYING HIS CONSCIENCE, A SOLDIER RESISTS ORDERS
Obeying his conscience, a soldier resists orders
Through inner awareness the power of the individual transcends the power of society
The power of society is greater than we can possibly conceive and tends to force people into unsought situations, as in the example of a conscripted soldier. Yet truly, the power of the individual is even stronger. An inner awareness of the truth of who we really are makes it impossible for us to continue on a course of action that is essentially unrewarding or inauthentic.
Intuitively we know, whatever external pressure there may be, that in the deepest sense we are more responsible to ourselves than the community. Although we feel allegiance to our people, in the end our feelings of faithfulness are not best applied in service to the common good at all, but to ourselves.
In order to become a soldier, a person must put aside considerations of heart and go away from everything they hold dear. The emotional wrench cannot be soul food – it offends us on such a very deep level. This feeling is not so very different from that experienced when work duties dominate, and the possibility of full enjoyment of home and family is stolen.
In moments of truth, the inner stirrings of spirit express as a willingness to face all the consequences of true self-assertion. Whenever obligations and desires conflict with each other, the drama of life takes the form of tragedy. This promotes decision – root-level decision – as little else does.
What follows this watershed occurrence is a necessary adjustment to bring us into alignment. This deviation is a course correction to put us back on track. That track is towards a self-fulfilling vision – so it may be completely legitimate for a soldier to desert his post.
There are consequences – and whether we turn right or left at the crossroads, there always are consequences – and these are unknown and unknowable. Yet the absence of electing, for this or for that, shows no discrimination, and will always attract penalties. Facing court martial may well be of lesser import compared with soul-level self-betrayal.
At such critical points in life, we must trust in our sense of inherent divinity. We are sacred beings who know what to do – we have to do the right thing trusting that it will work out well.
A soldier derelict in his duty
Commentary from Mandy McKinley
Selfhood. Inner authority. Character development. The black sheep. Whistleblower. Bursting other people's expectations of you. Leading by example. Two sides of a coin. Courage.
Commentary from Ana Neves
My first impression of this degree was negative: I felt offended with the idea that I could break away from something I committed to. But then it occurred to me that maybe the Master I was serving was not the right one and therefore, it is not a matter of what you have committed to but rather whom you're committed with. Service, honour, duty are all noble values when dedicated to the right Master. And the Master you are bound to follow is you. It is not your duty to serve upon any other Master but yourself.