For those who don’t know me well, don’t know my birthday (September 27th). personal history, or have a sense of astrology, you won’t understand how important my Sign has been as a guiding hand throughout my life. I am a Libra. Through and through. Technically and literally, that just means I was born on a date between September 23rd and October 22nd, according to the Western calendar, when this apparently random (at least to me) collection of stars appears in the night sky. But culturally and historically (and I mean even way back to Babylonian times), this constellation has equated to balance and fairness in the universe. But why? It kind of looks like a house falling over to me.
But I’ve always — throughout my life and career — taken it personally. Perhaps because I’ve seen and experienced a great deal of “unfairness” and “imbalance” in my life-time. Whether it was growing up in a toxically abusive home, bankrupt and broken city, racially, gender and economically unjust country and society, or physically deteriorating world. I’ve always KNOWN things were out of whack. And I’ve wanted to be part of the solution.
So, this year, as the world truly seems to be at a tipping point into irreversible destruction. I decided to do some digging into the meaning of this sign in the Heavens and ask why, even today, Libra is seen as THE powerful force for Balance, Equity and Justice.
And I discovered that while today, there are many explicit depictions of what Libra represents in Western law –The Scales of Blind Justice, not so surprisingly a woman, ever in search of balance, equity and fairness for all. She hangs out on court houses around the developed world as a warning against bias and the precariousness of momentary power and stability. Libra’s origins of meaning, aren’t quite as obvious. Most associated now with the symbol of the scales — based on the Scales of Justice held by Themis, the Greek personification of divine law that became the inspiration for modern depictions of Lady Justice, Libra’s origins aren’t actually in Western law. They are first known in Babylonian astronomy as MUL Zibanu (the “scales” or “balance of heaven”), The scales were held sacred to the sun god Shamash, who was also the patron of truth and justice. …
It was since these times, (thousands of years BC) that Libra has been associated with law, fairness and civility.
The Romans then made it a bit clearer by tying the constellation to the Autumnal equinox, when there are more equal day and night time hours.
This was all very elucidating and exciting — that my personal commitment to justice in the world has such ancient and divine roots. But it did give little opportunity for individual agency in changing the course of Justice. Fairness and Balance, according to these interpretations, necessitates action by the Universe, Society and the Greater Other i(like government) n order for change, balance and fairness to prevail over Unfairness and Imbalance. And as a general societal contrarian. I don’t buy it. Because I believe and fully live in the space of individual implementation of fairness and balance in my own personal life. I’ve had to. I’ve seen and experienced too much personal pain to know that I can take action there. And I must. We all must.
So, this week as you listen to or read yet another story about Unfairness and Imbalance in the world around you, rather than shrugging impotently or going into a paralyzed depression of helplessness, I’d encourage you to say to yourself: How can I be an agent here? Who can I support? Who can I solicit to join me in this effort? And once you get started you just might be surprised at how much you CAN DO and can bring others into.
The agency for fairness and balance begins in each of us. I suggest you use it.
Holly Lynch is a 20+ year communications veteran and life-long social impact advocate and strategist who has helped individuals and companies tackle the toughest challenges in their worlds. Having survived countless life setbacks and two rounds with terminal cancer, while seeing the country-wide collapse of the systems and safety nets for the most vulnerable in and outside our communities, she is now shifting her life and career trajectories to focus on coaching those facing down fundamental shifts and transitions as they try to navigate and rebuild their lives and businesses during these unprecedented times.