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Every Monday morning at 6:49 and 8:49, IPR News Radio looks into the night sky with Mary Stewart Adams, former Program Director and founder of the International Dark Sky Park at the Headlands, who has been telling stories of the night sky on IPR since 2013.

In the Cradle of Eclipse Season: this week on the Storyteller's Night Sky

Odyssey clay tablet.jpeg
In 2018 archeologists found what is believed to be the oldest known inscription of Homer's "Odyssey" which is imagined this week as a metaphor depicting the struggle of every human being toward the higher, greater self.

Every year there are two eclipse seasons and we’re in the midst of part II right now.

This year the first eclipse season came in May and June, and now we’re in the second eclipse season, here at the end of November, beginning of December. You could imagine, then, that during the two weeks from the lunar eclipse November 19th until the solar eclipse December 4th, we’re moving through the cradle of eclipse season.

Now here’s the fascinating bit about this year’s eclipses: The June 2021 solar eclipse went directly over the North Pole. The December 4th solar eclipse will go over Antarctica, so, to push on the metaphor a little further, I imagine that this year, the cradle in which we are rocked by these eclipses is the Earth itself, from its tippy top to the very bottom.

Earth. Rotating, orbiting, wobbling, our home, upon which we journey to consciousness, like Odysseus, trying to make our way back to the beginning.

Ancient rituals of gratitude to the gods, to the dead, to nature, were not without merit or consequence. They said to the living world: thank you for the abundant gifts of which I can freely partake, and the guidance, that helps me to be wise and loving in the use of these resources.

Odysseus’ men ate the cattle of the sun, despite warning, and he was left alone, emblem of that part of the self that always knows better. He made it home, he fought, he overcame, he rose up victorious. Odysseus listened to the goddess. He honored the gods. He practiced all things in their season, and lived to tell the story. I imagine all of it as an ancient metaphor for the very real human struggle to overcome the lower nature in the self.

This Thanksgiving, may we all find our way to the true nature.