month 7 – the malaise of the midwife
see previous posts
- Myth of the Year
- the Abyss
- 0. Cockerel
- 1. the Plough
- 2. Bovine
- 3. Hound
- 4. the Forge
- 5. Rascal
- 6. the Well
I have to admit I’m not entirely satisfied with this title. I think Midwife is more appropriate, and may change her in future.
The healer is the rascal’s counterpart. As he is a disruptive influence that undermines the social order when it is coming together into its place of strength, she is a healing influence who is undermined by the social order in the early stages of coming unravelled.
the astrological sign of Virgo is mutable, as the sun enters at the end of summer, the end of the harvest. Although she is a fertility symbol (as the virgin, or maiden, this is to be expected), she also stands at the time of harvest, when the fields have borne their fruit. This aspect seems at odds. Nevertheless, consider the earth her womb, and that of her body remains fertile, yet unfertilized.
She also represents the shift from the energy of summer to the dormancy of autumn, and as such is introverted and conservative. This more suits our purposes.
the constellations Ophiuchus, reintroduced to the zodiac in 1930, has largely been ignored by astrologers. He is based on the Greek Asclepius, the god of healing. His serpent-twined staff is still the symbol for medicine. Asclepius was famed for his healing powers, and he even brought Hippolytus back from the dead. Probably a bad idea, as Zeus killed him for messing around with Hades’ dominion over the dead.
This is the aspect that will most likely work its way into our healer’s roel in the calendar.
The serpent is an interesting device, as it represents both the life force as well as poison, which is the very balancing act of medication. “The dose makes the poison” is attributed to Paracelsus.
The midwife is responsible for caring for the expecting mother, assisting her at birth, and helping her with the first few months of motherhood. The degree of involvement varies from community to community, and depends on the relationship between the mother and midwife. Nevertheless, this is a particular role that overlaps with the image of Virgo and the Healer – this archetype forgoes pregnancy herself that she might help others. A sacrifice of sorts, a selflessness as well.
She nurtures life from the outside (whereas the Rascal disrupted life from within).
This also points to the Healer’s role in actively cohering the society together, even while it is beginning to crumble in its natural ageing. She is at odds with the social order in which she finds herself, yet it is the nature of her sacrifice to continue serving.
the Healer and the Calendar
This chapter is the first of the melodrama of Months 7, 8, 9 – which is in the tradition of the private investigator motif. Here, the threat to the social order is from within – and includes the social order itself, at the stage where it has passed its zenith, and begins its inevitable disintegration.
The Healer attends to the Knight’s betrothed lady, who is pregnant. The lady insists the father is the knight, but she wishes to abort the child. Her reasons are evasive and unclear. The Healer presses her for the truth, and is told in confidence that the father may be the rascal.
The city is divided, camps are drawing lines in the sand regarding the knight’s successor. The political maneuvers are cruel, and underhanded.
The Healer, who alone knows the truth (although some suspect it), investigates the situation to try to untangle the tangle. The more she discovers about the lady, the knight and the rascal, the less certain she is about anything. Other than that the city has become hostile, and corrupted.
240 Days to Dec 21st 2012