Thursday, April 17, 2008

Papal Bull

The Pope is currently visiting the US. He is giving his Church there a hard time over the paedophile priest scandal. He has also said the following: "We will absolutely exclude paedophiles from the sacred ministry…. What does it mean to speak of child protection when pornography and violence can be viewed in so many homes through media widely available today?" Ah, now I understand: the problem of paedophile priests has nothing to do with the Church and everything to do with American culture. And if it does have anything to do with the church, it is the American church and not the Vatican at which we must point the finger.

The Vatican is well known for providing a refuge from the law for its paedophile priests, when it hasn’t been able to quietly move them on to other parishes where they can carry on as before. The Roman Catholic Church considers itself to be above the law, and so does not have a problem with protecting and covering-up for these people.

At the same time, I don’t want to demonise the paedophile priests – demonising anyone is unhelpful, however bad they are, it’s a way of making ourselves feel good. And paedophiles are the modern witches in this respect. The problem that a lot of these priests have is arrested emotional and sexual development. They are shut away in seminaries at a formative age and encouraged to feel guilty about their sexual impulses. These celibate retards in skirts are then let loose on the community in a position of spiritual guidance, and the power that comes with that.

No wonder there is a mess. Pope Benedict cannot address the real issues because to do so would involve changing some of the church’s basic attitudes. He is known for having a phenomenal intellect and subtle mind, but he has spent his life putting those abilities in the service of the church’s stupidity. As such, I do not view him as an intelligent man.

Before he became Pope he spent 24 years as “Prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, formerly known as the Holy Office, the historical Inquisition.” In common parlance, he was known as the previous Pope’s ‘Enforcer’. It was a hard cop-soft cop act, so that John Paul II could appear saintly while someone else did his dirty work for him. This is a fairly common strategy for people in positions of spiritual authority.

The role of Prefect of the Congregation is best known for matters relating to Doctrinal enforcement. And in Joseph Ratzinger’s case (as he then was, of German origin), he came down hard on some of the South American liberation theologians. Other issues also prompted condemnations or revocations of rights to teach.

Ratzinger also had authority over other matters including clerical sexual misconduct. In 2001 he issued his notorious “Crimen Sollicitationis”, which affirmed and clarified the Church’s right to keep secret its own investigations into clerical sexual misconduct. In other words, he legitimised the cover-up that was going on. Under normal circumstances, he could have been prosecuted for inciting people to withhold from the police information pertaining to serious crimes.

So for him to announce in the US that he is deeply ashamed of the paedophile priests, without acknowledging his own role in allowing, even encouraging it to continue is deeply hypocritical. But hey, we are dealing with the Catholic Church, so what do you expect? Just don’t get caught up in the popular fantasy that he is ‘spiritual’. Remember it is a ghoul that you see waving mildly to the crowds from the Popemobile.

Roman Catholicism is the largest single religious denomination in the US, accounting for 23% of the population. I can understand it as a sort of tribal affiliation, I think that’s OK. But to take its rigid and fantastical doctrines seriously is another matter, and I’ve no doubt that many Catholics have enough sense not to do so.

Ratzinger was born 16 April 1927 at 4.15am in Marktl, Germany. He has some very nice bits to his chart – Sun in Aries trine to Neptune; Jupiter Rising in Pisces. This gives him a strong connection to the mystical, the spiritual, to God. This is fundamental to his personality. On its own it’s pretty saintly. Stick in Saturn in Sagittarius in the 9th, and you have a religious leader, a Pope. (The Dalai Lama also has Saturn in the 9th House. The last Pope had Pluto in the 9th.)

But then you have Moon in Libra square to Pluto in Cancer. The Moon is less obvious than the Sun, and Pluto tends to be hidden. Here you have the murk, the appetite for power and control and the ruthlessness which Ratzinger may not be very aware of. It is his Shadow, and what he personally identifies with are probably the saintly bits.

With Pluto in Cancer in the 4th House, he is fiercely protective of his own tribe and its traditions. He also has a Mars-Node conjunction in the 4th, which adds to this quality. And it is a blind quality, for it led to the cover-up over the paedophile priests. It is a ‘My country, right or wrong’ sort of attitude. Under the saintly surface, what we see operating in this man is Pluto at its most primitive and pre-human. He has the Node there as well, so in theory this lifetime involves him coming to understand this aspect of himself. But he was 74 when he issued his Crimen Sollicitationis, so he seems to be in no hurry to learn.

By transit, Pluto is currently opposing his Mars-Node conjunction, so the issue is being activated. At present, he sees it as ‘out there’, as we can see in his criticism of the American Church. But as the transit progresses, the issue may come closer to home, he may find himself under fire as well. This is the way oppositions often work: they begin by being projected ‘out there’, and gradually we come to see (if we are open to it) that it involves us as well.

This Pope is destined to have a strong relationship with not just the US Catholics but with the US as a nation. The US Sibly chart has Sun at 13 Cancer square to Saturn at 15 Libra. Ratzinger has Moon at 14 Libra square to Pluto at 14 Cancer. This is a very powerful connection, and it has a lot to do with power (Pluto) as well as the US Presidency (Sun). So no wonder George Bush (with Sun at 14 Cancer square to Moon at 17 Libra), in an unprecedented move, greeted him. And it was perfectly timed: Ratzinger’s Progressed Sun is currently at 13 Cancer in an applying conjunction to the US Sun.

So we are going to need to watch this space over the coming years. Roman Catholicism is a huge political constituency in the US, and via that constituency the Pope looks likely to be having a huge influence on the US.

It is no doubt Tony Blair’s dearest wish that his friend George should convert to Catholicism, like he did himself last year. The Pope and George Bush are both fundamentalist Christian by nature. Maybe, with their mutual hostility to Islam, it is simply a case of my enemy’s enemy is my friend; but with the Pope’s Pluto-Moon square tightly conjunct to Bush’s Sun-Moon square, I think we are likely to see a very strong relationship developing between these 2 Plutonian men.

In 2006, the Pope made the following statement during a speech: “Show me just what Muhammad brought that was new and there you will find things only evil and inhuman, such as his command to spread by the sword the faith he preached.” I am sure he has a willing adherent in George W Bush.

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Venus said...

A brilliant, searing, and perhaps exorcistic, post!

I left the Catholic church when I was a child. Finding it then, and now, an arrogant male dominated tyranny.

The five Roman Catholic US Supreme Court justices in their majority are now setting this country back to the stone age with their doctrinaire decisions. And you are not the first that I have read to observe that George W. Bush is a "Catholic" president.

Although I have met and seen individuals of sincere religious bent in the Catholic community, I feel that the Catholic path to salvation is rife with pitfalls that are difficult, or impossible, for most to overcome.

Anonymous said...

I always think of him as Ratzinger. Somehow that name says it all.

Anonymous said...

Thank you for this post. It says it all. And I am still huffing over the Catholic church and its platform during WWII.

Anonymous said...

What's with the violent imagery? Didn't appreciate that at all.

Dharmaruci said...

He has blood on his hands.

And the next image is from the film Alien where the thing bursts out of the guy's stomach - it's that sort of Pluto as unexamined, pre-human instinct.

Kenna J said...

Really great post, Dharmaruci. An American would be too scared to make such blunt observations of a religion.

Anonymous, what was the Catholic church's platform during WWII?

Anonymous said...

wow. shocking post... visually and verbally. but i found it lacking in backbone. this argument does not hold water- let alone walk... now, lets see, 1. ratzi was smart, he towed the line, waited, and now he is in the position of power and can do /make real change for the church (the church being the people)- he did not act on philisophical impluse (as a good aquarian would do)and blow his changes at having this real power to transform. he is not a rebound pope- he is a mega-transformer... 2. he is finally standing up for catholics/ christians in on the world stage- in such a judeo-christian fashion- and it was time... we will not stand by as ultra-liberal non-spritual individuals continue to take shots at the church (us) and our beliefs- we will not fight- but we will not sit down either- and he is standing up... 3. please look past the institution itself and examine the belief- the institution will change- the belief will not...

Dharmaruci said...

When he was the Enforcer, he wasn't just towing the line and waiting, he was actively implicated in a lot of stuff. He's not including himself when he points the finger. And he's not prepared to look at one of the major causes - the celibate retards in skirts and how they come to be like that.

But it is the Roman Catholic Church, and it's fucked up like the rest of us are, so let's not expect too much.

Kenna J said...

Speak for yourself, Dharmaruci. I am way less fucked up than the Roman Catholic Church.

For example, I am capable of making amends with someone I've harmed, directly to that person, with no deity involved. It's no coincidence that I started learning social skills such as this only after I gave up being a devout Catholic.

dawa satso said...

Ha! Ha! kenna j same here. Quit the church when just 13 made a personal promise to quit as soon as I received "Confirmation" months later. Then picked up my first psychology book straightaway.
We had Sisters of Mercy who beat us with a stick if we didn't have our catechism memorized and pulled my hair for inadequate penmanship (no warning, she came up from behind).
My best friend is english, catholic school as well, but has a sense of humor about it all: "I thought god was a real bastard but I loved it!".
Today we're both tibetan buddhists, but reverential, attempting to keep principles and not, god help us, "religious".

Anyhoo, "The Rat" is not beloved. Face it, he's filler for the moment. A mere understudy who leaves most catholics checking their watches impatiently waiting for him to die or get off. Bush, by the way, was born a Roman Catholic and still is, with a fundamentalist born agin' twist of adolescent cowboy complete with fake texan affectation for one raised in New Haven, Connecticut.

As for the rest,every roman catholic I know treasures their birth control regardless of the primitive church taboos. It just makes it naughtier and sweeter.

Another last thing. Everybody "goos" when some romantic church authority shows up. Everybody likes to feel the endorphin rush of the presence of a "holy authority" however shit-filled that authority may be.

Anonymous said...

YouTube Video: The Crime of Sollicitation