|Finding One's Medicine Name|
Everyone has a medicine name because everyone is a child of God with a purpose in life. As one matures and grows into one's destiny, there may be slight shifts in the emphasis of the name, perhaps showing more understanding of mission and guidance, more willingness for the soul to exert itself itself through the personality or for the personality to respond to the influence of the soul, or more dynamic expression of the energy in the world.
I published the story of my medicine name, but I have been teaching students for years how to find their names. What is involved is the capacity to move beyond the rational mind into the hidden aspects of one's innermost and most delightful being.
For those for whom the concept of a medicine name is new, let me start with the Moon. The Moon symbolizes your line of least resistance. It is your natural way of wanting to express yourself on Earth. It is the key to the contents of your subconscious and to unlocking the memories of past experiences that are locked in reservoirs unknown to the conscious mind. When you have a feeling not to do something or not to trust someone, the feelings are messages from the unconscious because this part of your being speaks through feelings and images presented in dreams and other nonverbal ways of communication.
Being magnetic, the Moon draws experiences, unfortunately and fortunately, that are familiar and similar to what has already happened. On its own, the Moon cannot create an entirely new experience because it can only draw to itself something that resonates with its own patterns. The Moon is therefore the clue to karma, both to that which is good and that which doesn't feel so welcome because in the past we have sown seeds that will ripen into abundant rewards as well as seeds whose fruits we would probably prefer not to taste.
To discover the nature of the Moon, most people need a little creative imagination. Some astrological symbolism is also usually helpful. I have often said that the sign of the Moon probably points to the best and worst of the Moon whereas the sign of the Ascendant is generally more lofty.
For instance, the Moon in Capricorn may suggest someone who is very practical, conservative, patient, ambitious, and responsible. However, if one has failed in one's duties, there may be doubt about one's ability to succeed or measure up to the demands of higher position. For instance, Moon square Neptune may suggest that there is a conflict between realism and idealism, a fear of being deceived by what cannot readily be proved, and/or a fear that temptations or sacrifice may be more than one can handle. For instance, much as one may want to believe that a better world is possible, it may be difficult if one is jaded and cynical. In such an instance, Neptune feels unsafe, delusional, and apt to mislead; however, failure to respond adequately to Neptune may make one feel isolated, unsupported by unseen forces, lacking in inspiration and divine guidance, in short someone who lives without the benefits of spiritual understanding and action.
One has to assume that all challenges that come upon the heels of Neptune/Moon contacts would precipitate some of the old dilemmas. For instance, in the classical division between church and state, the person with the Capricorn Moon would tend to favor the state and perhaps offend the church whereas someone with a Sagittarius Moon in stress with Saturn would be the opposite, the individual's instinctive alignment would be with the church and the state would be felt to be the cause of the disharmony or discord.
At those critical times in one's incarnational journey in which one feels forced to choose between duty and conscience, there is a "line of least resistance" that is unique to each person's path, one that carries the consequences of the choices, for instance a sense of unworthiness to stand before God or unwillingness to obey man's laws. The "right" choice is the one that works best for the individual and often there is no perfect choice so compassion for the pain and suffering experienced on the dusty road of evolution and fulfillment is a must for each individual, starting with oneself.
For instance, if one blames oneself for one's choices, one aggravates the feelings of unworthiness without solving the problem or recognizing the opportunities in new situations. A medicine name focuses attention on that which is valued about each part of oneself, not just the lunar, but the entire self. One has a name which coordinates the various aspects of one's being.
So, staying with the example of the Capricorn Moon, one wants to give recognition to the part that is earnest, dutiful, and dependable, ignoring for a moment what could cause the individual to slip into dysfunctional patterns. The immortal part is the willingness to carry out one's mission, not the reactions that have arisen when the ability to work steadily and without hesitation was thwarted.
To make this practical, one looks at some of the keywords for Capricorn and chooses the one that fits best: serious, obedient, or practical or "the one willing to try" or "serves with diligence."
This is just the beginning. There is also the ASC or rising sign. This is the sign on the Eastern horizon where one entered into incarnation and it is key to the blueprint of why who were born to do what you are here to do (which is shown by the Midheaven.) The reason or vibration is found in the energies of the ASC.
Let's say someone has Aquarius rising. There is always tension between adjacent signs of the Zodiac because the one is reacting against the sign before. For instance, Aries is risk taking so Taurus is cautious. Taurus is stubborn and Gemini is flexible . . . and on it goes. Capricorn is conventional and adjusted to the status quo, but Aquarius wants to reform and replace what has outworn its usefulness.
In a deeply focused state, a person with Capricorn Moon and Aquarius rising would be able to visualize future possibilities and find practical ways to introduce changes in technology, social institutions and services, and combine the best of steadiness with advancement. This would imply that Capricorn does not impede the way of change by intruding skepticism, vested interests, or service to the paymaster into the world that is coming into being.
In the course of history, we know that changes have occurred, some of them reasonably peacefully, some with bloodshed and violence. There is no violence in the Capricorn-Aquarius partnership, violence arises as a reaction on the part of those who are afraid that changes will work against their own interests or desired outcome. Therefore, a highly skilled Capricorn would find ways to implement change without challenging the status quo too much.
We may ask how the Renaissance came into being with some resistance but not revolution of the nature of the American Revolution or Bolshevik Revolution.
I am deliberately using these examples because we have tremendous tension in the world now because of the Saturn-Pluto opposition which represents truly intense investments in very particular advantages, neither of which necessarily operates in the best interests of humanity or the Planet. We also have the transcendental planets moving through Aquarius trying to focus the vision of the future. This is the first time we have had these two planets in the same sign since they were discovered, meaning that even if this happened it the past, the event was not conscious to the same extent as it is today. If I may be so bold, then I would say that those who are invested in oil are functioning from a fear-based dogma that a world without their control over oil and gas would be a world in which their power and influence was curtailed so these beings are struggling to retain their bases of power, this at the expense of a more inclusive vision that has some Aquarian attributes such as fairness, honesty, and fitting the pieces into the whole.
This may take us too far from the medicine name, but I needed to create a scenario that helps people to find where they fit. Now, let's say someone actually has these placements and feels responsible for creating a world in which each individual has an equal opportunity to unfold his or her divine potential. Then, a medicine name could convey this in words such as "Bringer of the Future" or more abstractly, "Bridge to Equitable Community" or "Builder of the Common Good."
You have to find the name on your own or ask to be shown it. Often, I can channel this for individuals, but it is always better when the name is revealed to your own inner knowing. Then, the ego, or Sun, it the one who carries the name, who knows the forces that guide him or her into the fulfillment of mission. The Sun shows a position to fill. For instance, Taurus may provide resources or organize the resources that facilitate the work and Leo may lead the venture. This however is just a role. You see, if several persons with the same Moons and Ascendants got together, they would still have to apportion the roles and this would generally be done in accordance with the Sun of each individual.
Copyright by Ingrid Naiman 2002
Copyright by Ingrid Naiman 2007 and 2014