Agnes Elmira Kepler draws from many esoteric paths to work through midlife transitions as a Teacher and Healer of the Mystery.
Many issues exist to create chaos in our lives and can interfere with feeling at peace. In fact, such a lack of peace can feel like living in an emotional war zone—even in a house in an American suburb. Identifying all these elements lurking around underneath the surface unresolved—like a shark on the hunt—is the first real step towards creating lasting peace.
This is especially true for people with artistic temperaments and what astrologer Stephen Arroyo calls a “divine discontent.”
[A] divine discontent, and a constant restless seeking of an ideal not easily realisable on earth…[with] a noble aspiration and persistent endeavor to seek for a fuller realization of inner visions...[is] frequently found in the nativities of great artists… When one senses that there is in fact a subtler, higher plane of being… accessible to human consciousness, it is often difficult to patiently live a mundane existence in a material world that increasingly looks and feels like a prison.” P45
— Stephen Arroyo
Finding Meaning in the Way Back to Peace
An in-depth, conscious review always helps. Looking back over the wreckage of so many chaotic changes from the past few years, I now see much more spiritual growth and greater awareness than I first believed. By examining the major astrological transits from that period, as well as the ones occurring now, a more objective perspective emerges. A study of an overlapping set of Saturn and Neptune transits to my natal chart, brings an understanding: Clarifying my karmic soul work and what’s left to do, restores a sense of motivation and purpose to my current affairs.
Needing more study to achieve this, I look up at my shelf of books and find some vintage astrology texts a friend gave me over decade ago. Most of them are not read yet; they seem too esoteric even for me (if that’s possible.) However, perusing one of them now reveals the exact material necessary for my current work. Just copying the quotes from the text into my notebook is a major transcendent experience!
Sitting down to update this peace article I wrote two years ago, I find all these statements fit perfectly retroactively, and decide to incorporate them into my article. They are all from one text: Astrology, Karma and Transformation: The Inner Dimensions of the Birth Chart, by Stephen Arroyo. Now—despite the recent feelings of disconnection—instead of seeing the last years as only a truckload of upheaval and destruction, it not only seems like all growth and some healing, but is also a reminder of the guiding spiritual force still present.
Before the assessment of finding peace after all this recent relentless blackness begins, it’s important to take a moment to connect with and honor all that spiritual growth. See it. Believe it. It is real . . . and is ever always with me, waiting.
My Little Bedroom Desk
If we welcome the onrush of Neptunian energies into an open mind and soul, we can experience heightened spiritual... inspiration.” Dane Rudhyar writes, Neptune is ‘at every level, the healing and sustaining power of the wholeness of the whole… whose mind establishes its formations in terms of the reconciliation of all opposites, leaving nothing outside its all-inclusive multi-dimensional logic- to [her] God answers as Grace.’ (from Triptych)” P47
Defining the “Peace Problem”
It’s also important to honor my need for things to be stable and steady, in order to enjoy growth and progress towards success at a pace that feels manageable to me.
At the 2013 Winter Solstice Moon Circle meditation, my angel told me my purpose was “to be peaceful.” That's my new intention.
Usually, when a thing is asked for, its opposite comes first: The soul needs to clear out the opposing force blocking what is desired. If joy is wished for, first comes the underlying grief and sadness for what has been lost. A wish for compassion brings up old rage for what never received its due justice and retribution, while a longing for love unlocks decades of abandonment and hatred towards those who left us alone. These difficult feelings come from unresolved wounds that must first be dislodged to surface for healing. The remaining space is then open for the Universe to fill it with what is asked for.
Long ago a client once told me that peace is just peace; it comes as a Spiritual Gift of Grace upon request. For many years I believed that to be true.
However, there are forces that work against peace, as out Mr. Arroyo explains:
Neptune represents our sense of obligation to society and to other people...[and] in this case shows a channel through which we have to pay off certain karmic debts to others... This tendency...must be related to practical facts; or else one leaves oneself open to being manipulated, used, and even exhausted by the demands of others... So often we find Neptunian people pouring out every ounce of their vital force in the futile attempt to satisfy their insatiable sense of obligation to others. P46
Defining Peace for Oneself
So, after many years of asking for Peace and only receiving more Upheaval, it finally occurs to me: That idea—that peace, “comes as a spiritual gift of grace upon request”—is just total crap. An Ongoing Relentless Lack of Peace is rooted in a living situation—such as a household or community—with an underlying conflict over something that is Just Not Working for any party. It also likely includes some major unconscious karmic soul work changes taking place after living too many years in denial and trying to force personal solutions onto unwilling parties.
This karma applies backwards and forwards over many generations. Either it’s working for All but not for Some—in this situation the Some just suppresses disagreement to Keep the Peace. In other situations, the Some finally speaks up—attempting to get their truth known to the All. But these attempts do not work, being met with Denial, Distraction or a Direct Refusal to participate in changes that would create a better overall situation. Conflict or All-Out War ensues. No one sees any solution whatsoever, and the Battle rages on.
Now, for once, what interests me are the straight up Practical Elements of the Peace Creating Mission, not the Deep Spiritual Core of it. A Practical Approach to Establishing Peace begins with creating a functional way of actually getting purposeful work done in the first place.
One can of course experience non-material forces and psychic sensitivity either constructively (which Dr. William Davidson called the ‘angelic benediction’ referring to a form of higher protection and guidance) or self destructively (possession, deception, or dissipation of one’s energies). Precisely how the subtle Neptunian energy and dimension of life will be integrated into our entire life structure depends in great part upon how honest, courageous, and practical we are. P47
Naming Unresolved Hidden Elements That Obstruct Peace
For most people, regular use of prayer, meditation, and writing is enough to deal with the garden-variety minor experience of conflict. Adding consistent, healthy, Non-Violent Communication is enough to bring about Miracles of Enduring Peace.
However, for a long-term experience of being without peace, many different elements and many distinct layers of issues are involved. For those of us who live overlong in the War Zone, it is useful and necessary to take the time to identify and examine all the fundamental elements that are Just Not Working. Seeing and feeling these life elements that are lurking around unresolved underneath the surface—like a shark on the hunt—are the real first steps toward creating lasting peace.
This one approach to establishing peace is the focus of this article. Once the Unresolved Elements are identified, it is possible to more clearly see which of our needs are not being met and how the current mechanics of the situation impede those details that enable full functioning. Bit by bit, a new image forms of what needs to be changed, and we see in what order and time this needs to occur.
As a result—having let go of the "old dead gods" we once served, but which serve us no longer—a new plan forms to work towards creating a fully functional new life based on what is important now. Of course, maintaining these personal rituals are like a Daily Soul Shower that ease the mind and is Great Guidance in learning how to let go of what we no longer need, while keeping the Vision of Our Ultimate Destination always in mind.
One might say that, unless one has come to terms with the pressures, realities and obligations of Saturn, one is not sufficiently grounded enough to handle the intensity and disruption of any of the trans-Saturnian planets. In other words, one has to take the...inspiration and idealism of Neptune and make them real by bringing that...into our everyday life. Failure to work on this integration inwardly with great honesty and diligence will often bring about...a tremendous feeling of discontent.
The Big, Unresolved Elements in My Own Life
- Living with my parents: a need to be living on my own
- Lack of sufficient income to be financially autonomous: underlying underearning and "stunted adult" issues
- Unresolved health conditions: Autoimmune Thyroiditis; suppressed immune system & the "viral load" with Myalgic Encephalomyelitis; relentlessly unending obstacles of getting consistent effective treatment from network provider healthcare for these conditions
- Living in the Alcoholic and Codependent family system: a lack of environmental & emotional support or communal acceptance of my true nature and Who I Am
- Major excessive compulsive, ancestral accumulation of clutter: time, space, energy, and other peoples’ psychic stuff leads to debting
- Compulsively taking on too much: a need to commit to less; take on less; and give the rest of it “back”
- Compulsively taking on other people’s "stuff" without realizing it
- Lack of acceptance it’s time to reach for outside help, or acquire different, more effective forms of outside help. Doing it on my own has taken me as far as I can possibly go.
- Lack of regimen/maintenance: exercise, diet, readings, writings, meetings, outreach
- Inability to take breaks and have regular and genuinely restful vacations
- Exertion/Exhaustion: an inability to slow down, be thorough & organized, or avoid "hurry and indecision." I need to stay in my pace and free from overpowering outside influences trying to force me into their false agendas.
The key to forming a right relationship to the Neptunian force in our lives is to realize that no satisfaction or liberation will come from our constantly seeking the ideal for which we yearn in the outer world, and that it will only come when we accept responsibility (Saturn!) for making our lives ideal thru our own creativity and devotion. In other words, we have to turn within, we have to live the ideal in order to make it real. p45
Establishing a Detached Perspective
It helps to first change perspective and see how these elements fit into one Big Picture. The first item on my list is the main problem that must be solved for me to find my peace. The next six elements are all the things that have chronically interfered with accomplishing this goal.
Coincidentally (or synchronously?) they all involve wrestling blindly with gigantic forces far beyond my sphere of control. They also combine into larger issues of my Ancestral Accumulation of Clutter From a Dysfunctional Family of Origin. All the while, I somehow believe I can still enforce my specific outcome at my specific time, which is the Real Problem. Once I recognize the scope of these unresolved elements and accept I cannot do it all at once (or all by myself,) I seek outside help from therapists, 12 Step & other spiritual communities, and body work.
I also find a Deep All-Encompassing Spiritual Archetype to apply myself to. (Full disclosure: This process is really chaotic and overlapping until certain trans-formative awakenings help me put into retroactive clarity. It took over a decade. Actively committing it all to writing requires even more time!)
Finally, the last 4 elements listed form the basis of actions that help me achieve my essential goal. This ultimately can only happen bit by bit, within a functional weekly maintenance routine that grows out of my Core Archetypal Image.
One must be grounded in the Saturnian reality to fully appreciate and utilize the uplifting aspect of Neptune’s dimension of life…one must have integrated the Saturnian necessities into a healthy attitude toward all life if one is going to be able to open oneself to Neptune’s influence without dissolving onto chaos. How can we appreciate the value of boundlessness if we have not established a life pattern within definite boundaries? Acute discrimination is required to enable us to clarify. p47-8
Creating the Healthy Maintenance Regimen
A Need for a Plan
With all these medical symptoms, while fighting Alone in a War Zone in Constant Upheaval, everything is a Moving Target. It feels like dancing with the Tasmanian Devil all the time, never able to sit down long enough to see any task through to completion. Never mind being so deeply fatigued, the rest of any time is spent in bed.
This calls for a plan.
A major part of the Peace Intention is to establish *once and for all* a Proper Health Regimen for a Daily/Weekly/Monthly/Annual Practice and to execute it with Proper Awareness of Limitations. The functionality of this plan depends on being able to commit to that regimen Only what is Actually personally manageable, and something that can Actually come to completion.
7 Roots of My Psychic Tree
The first part of the plan involves sitting down to write about each of what became the 7 Roots of My Psychic Tree.
These are seven areas of life: Spiritual, Mental, Emotional, Physical, Financial, Creative, Recovery. Each requires taking time to define what it means as an individual person: What is missing or interfering with getting needs in that area of life met? What are ongoing specific goals for growth and direction in that area?
Break Down Goals and Unresolved Issues into Projects
To begin, general definitions of each of these Roots with a mission statement are typed in different Word documents to email to support people.
Next, all Goals and Unresolved Issues are broken into Separate Projects with smaller projects, goals and action items, and added into their respective Word document outlines. Then, a list of smaller categories is generated for each of the larger goals. This includes identifying the details of regular tasks that fall into each category, and recognizing that many of these goals involve rest & self-care; and social, leisure & play activity; in addition to regular work-related actions.
One Day a Week to Attend to Each Root
Finally, one day of the week is established to attend to each of these Roots; each week, 1-3 of those Actions Listed is chosen for that Corresponding Day of Week. Work on these goals happens a little every seven days with purpose, while balancing self-care into the equation. Three years later, I finally get this set!
My "Yoga Mat"
There is no use in always looking unrealistically for the perfect situation...with beautiful scenery all around...Naturally, an extremely sensitive person may need to live in an environment or have a type of work which at least does not deplete his or her psychic energy thru constant stress. But to insist that everything be perfect before we will live it to the full—before we will commit ourselves to it completely—iis an attitude which insures we will never feel any inner peace.” p 45
A Practical Example of Choosing Peace
It is essential to recognize that even with all this carefully planned purposeful activity, unexpected things still happen while emotional and material stuff still accumulate. Writing out the renewed direction of one's life; remembering one's assets & purpose does not mean that all these goals are to be accomplished in one year. This is a many year plan to be applied to any new healthy regimen.
Bigger breaks and vacations are vital to detach, reflect, regroup and refresh the spirit with renewed joy and energy to continue back home. Spelling out an enormous vision in all its detail and glory serves as a beacon: a compass direction to stay on course. Returning to this place daily, through the pressure valves of prayer, meditation, writing and healthy communication, releases tension. It also creates more peace with those all around and maintains mindfulness of why to do this in the first place.
Now Being Peaceful is possible. Loads of time are not spent insanely running around; abandoning the regimen of healthy self-care and vision work; trying to meet some other person’s insane deadline externally imposed with Their personal agendas based on Their false ideas. For me, it’s more like saying "no" to that 3-day [Tao Retreat] weekend to have more time to complete set up the Feng Shui charms and cures in my studio loft. With pressure felt to go from a friend who lives at the temple where it was being held, the funds weren’t available anyway. Meanwhile, my loft area just received an intense energetic cleansing. The completion of its organized set up enables me to receive private clients and earn money in a way that suits me, albeit in a very humble and shabby little room. It also detaches me from the Madness of the Larger Household, providing a Peaceful Quiet Place to do deep personal meditation or creative self-expression.
The sense of well-being that comes from applying a simple Mindful Recovery Approach to making such a decision is immediate and satisfying. It grows out of showing up each day—as one of work, rest or play—doing small things that can be finished in a short time.
My "Very Humble and Shabby Little Room"
Neptune…indicates...a field of experience which we tend either to idealize or to escape from, usually motivated by little understood promptings from the unconscious or superconscious mind. It is in that field of expereince that we look for an ideal. P47
It seems we often identify some area of worldly experience with our most profound spiritual longing; and the result is confusion... Acute discrimination (Virgo! – the opposite sign from Neptune’s sign Pisces) is required to enable us to clarify for ourselves what is really related to our spiritual growth and what is merely an area of life which we hoped (perhaps for lifetimes) would fulfill our spiritual longing and loneliness.” P47-8
Naturally, such ambition can be directed either into fruitless attempts to gain spiritual power or worldly power in spiritually oriented groups, or into disciplined and consistent forms of spiritual practice based on devotion to an ideal rather than one’s own glorification.” P46 [notes]
Arroyo, Stephen. Astrology, Karma and Transformation; The Inner Dimensions of the Birth Chart. 1st edition, Stephen Arroyo and CRCS Publications, 1978.
This article is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge. Content is for informational or entertainment purposes only and does not substitute for personal counsel or professional advice in business, financial, legal, or technical matters.
© 2017 Agnes Elmira Kepler
Fayleen on April 16, 2018:
Hi this article interests me as there seems to be to much going on and also it's like I can sense that you are putting lots of pressure on you or other people are to sort out everything. You could just say I've done really well actually I've done my best so far and prioritise which is most important to you. My guess is that a flat/ apartment that is yours is most important but equally is someone to share it with. Your goal to be peacefull is good. I know it's difficult but it's not so much what happens to us it's how we deal with it that counts. : )
Agnes Elmira Kepler (author) from United States of America on June 16, 2017:
Thanks for your comments Lisa! I totally agree -all of this is much easier said than done! It took me at least 10 years of living through this the hard way to have the clarity and perspective to write out such a simple idea; and then it just came out like nothing. And I still have a lot of hard work to do. Now I can see a complex profound dialogue can emerge from such simple straight forward idea. What was that quote from Anais Nin? It's the point where the pain of staying in the bud finally becomes greater than the pain of breaking free of it for the flower to bloom. But that's the point I think. It's inevitable. If we want peace, we must be willing to tell the truth about ourselves then be willing to do the work. The only way around it is to go straight thru it. Otherwise it won't be authentic or stable in the end. That's the benefit of establishing a routine with time for rest play and self care. We take our time and love ourselves in between.
Lisa VanVorst from New Jersey on June 15, 2017:
This is so true. However not always easy to identify and solve the issues that create chaos in one's life. Sometimes we avoid the issues as to resolve can cause more stress and the steps to resolution can be just as challenging as the outcome.