When the Whole World Feels Like a Scraped Knee

Posted by Amanda Painter

Photo by Amanda Painter.

What do you do when you have a cut or scrape? When resources, knowledge, motivation — or a value on healing — are lacking, the available options are not always good ones. The sky has been busy as we grapple with, seek to resolve and try to stay sane within the context of news events, yet current astrology illustrates some ways through.

By Amanda Painter

What do you do when you have a cut or scrape? Do you ignore it or keep picking at the scab trying to form? When resources, knowledge, motivation — or a value on healing — are lacking, those can seem like the only two options. But there are others.

Photo by Amanda Painter.

Photo by Amanda Painter.

Depending on how severe the wound is one might need stitches, or surgery to remove a foreign object; maybe a simple lancing to release the pus.

You might choose to apply an antibiotic cream to reduce infection and stick on a band-aid to protect it from dirt and unnecessary contact while it heals. Maybe in addition you’ll try some ancient technique or wisdom: a little Reiki, an herbal salve.

Perhaps you’re the type to research the wound thoroughly and ask everyone you know what they would do. If you’re a child (or feeling small and tender and in need of some TLC), a loved one might kiss the boo-boo — and whether or not it heals the wound itself any faster, you feel a little better. It’s hard to measure that effect, yet it’s real.

People in the US and elsewhere are in a lot of pain right now — psychic, energetic, emotional pain — and could describe you. Specifically, the events of last week feel rather like someone has picked the scab off a giant wound we’ve been trying to ignore; one that has been festering to various degrees for decades or even centuries.

And suddenly, none of our usual methods of dealing with it seem up to the task. Ignoring it sure as shit won’t work; that’s partly what let it get so bad. Cutting into it with more violence will not work, despite the seeming need to remove something from the situation.

We can’t just cover it over and leave it alone — though a bandage made of empathy, a desire to understand, and the willingness to take responsibility for whatever part of it belongs to each of us might form a container in which healing can begin. Ancient wisdom — whether in the form of energy work or the most heart-centered religious and cultural teachings (“Love thy neighbor” comes to mind) — certainly seems to have a place.

Yet to be effective, that wisdom must be put into physical, active practice on an ongoing basis. That takes effort and awareness and devotion, and that can be exhausting.

What about kissing the boo-boo? Not exactly appropriate in any literal sense for dealing with complex racial and socio-economic class issues. At the same time, variations on that gesture might be absolutely crucial on a personal level, especially if you have directly experienced a trauma.

I’d even say that we all need to engage in some self-care and extra compassion for each other when the news (or life in your own community) is seething with images of violence, and the fear, hate and defensiveness that go with them. It’s not about being parental or childish: it’s about interrupting the constant firing of the adrenal glands so that you (or another) can relax a little and let your mind and heart do their jobs from a clearer space.

Which all brings me to the current astrology. The sky has been busy as we grapple with, seek to resolve and try to stay sane within the context of last week’s murders of two black men by white police officers and the subsequent murder of five white police officers by a black man. Race and class are complicit in a culture that is far from ‘black and white’, yet the unhelpful pull to polarize the situation is strong.

The Cancer Sun is squaring the Uranus-Eris conjunction (exact Friday through Saturday; Sun squares Eris first and then Uranus). You might say this is where we see the illustration of the compulsion to do something: to take care of the situation in some way; to care for yourself and those you love; to assert your identity. This might be especially true if you have felt marginalized culturally, or if you are surprising yourself with how willing you are to question national identity tropes (and question your friends and yourself on social media).

At the same time, the Sun is in a grand water trine with Mars in Scorpio and Chiron in Pisces (exact Saturday through Sunday). Trines are all about flow, harmony and ease.

Yet, I can see how this particular trine could keep some people swirling in circles with all the pain in the air, since water signs are all about emotion. But self-care is not the same as withdrawing from the world and ignoring the wound; ideally, self-care allows you to reach equilibrium again to facilitate engaging the world and active healing.

In fact, noted astrologer Barbara Hand Clow writes that Mars trine Chiron “cuts down on the general tendency for trines to be lazy,” and instead can facilitate breakthroughs. She says that Sun trine Chiron attunes us to transmutation and “encourages a very creative view of the universe.” Her words are not a magic wand, but they are encouraging.

Finally, Venus (the planet of love) entered Leo Tuesday and Mercury, planet of intellect, did the same yesterday (early Thursday UTC). As Len Wallick pointed out, this would be a good time to emulate Venus and Mercury in the sign ruled by our life-giving Sun: let your mind follow your heart.

Stitches and band-aids and kisses might be good for scrapes. But in the realm of deep societal wounds and the personal pain we feel as a result, love and empathy must accompany awareness and action if we want to heal — even if we’re not done uncovering the severity of the infection yet.


The Planet Waves Boutique has plenty of balm for your soul. Come pay us a visit, put your feet up, and enjoy discovering all the wonderful readings we have to offer.

9 thoughts on “When the Whole World Feels Like a Scraped Knee

  1. beleclaire

    Thanks Amanda
    I have felt that Sedna is very much part of this pain too – with her themes of fragmentation, dissection and betrayal
    She is opposite an unbearably slow moving Mars and semi sextile Uranus/Eris

    1. Amanda PainterAmanda Painter Post author

      beleclaire — those are some very astute thoughts about Sedna. It is easy to lose sight of the nuance brought by the minor planets (there are so many of them!) when the major planets are so very active. But I think the themes you mention fit right into the cultural struggle, which is an inner struggle for many as well.

      May Sedna’s story of generating the great and beautiful beasts of the sea also play out. So many of them are such intelligent creatures, after all.

  2. Kelly Grace Smith

    One of the most powerful tools of coaching and therapy, although they are expressed differently, is learning to turn (or “transmute” as Spiritual folks would say) challenges…into opportunities.

    As outlined in Amanda’s post…there has never been a better time to turn a tremendous challenge – what is occurring in the world around us – into an opportunity.

    An opportunity to become the change we seek in the world. (As Gandhi said, “be the change we seek in the world.”) I don’t mean that in some airy-fairy, non-practical, namby-pamby way…I mean it balls to the wall, no kidding.

    What’s happening in the world around us is an extraordinary opportunity for us to tune into who we are and who we choose to become and to map that onto and into our day…every day. Will you react or respond? Will you choose integrity or appeasing? Will you choose reality or illusion? Truth or pleasing? Will you speak up or remain silent? We face these choices every single day in our “ordinary” lives.

    The more we choose what is in integrity w/who we are, the more we become more of who we are. The more we become who we genuinely are, a more whole and true person…the more we emanate that/share that with others.

    I don’t know if Gandhi had metaphysics in mind, but the power of the truth he spoke works on every level…that’s why what he spoke is so true and so powerful, even though it has become a cliché. When you “be” the energy of integrity, honesty, humor, grace, patience, acceptance, respect…the energy of who you are being impacts everyone around you. You, just you…make a difference in the world.

    And, you are killing two birds with one stone; cultivating self-love, self-acceptance, self-respect, self-trust, and self-worth, integrity of Self within you…and sharing that “energy” with the world.

    “If not us, who? If not now, when?” Robert Kennedy spoke that phrase during the tumultuous 1960’s, a time when the astrology was similar to what we are now experiencing.

    Do you think there will ever be a better time in your lifetime to turn the challenge of what is occurring in the world around you…into a powerful opportunity to learn and grow and deepen who you are, while also being of service to the world around you? I’m pretty sure for me, there will never be a better time to be the change I seek in the world….Kelly Grace Smith

    1. Amanda PainterAmanda Painter Post author

      “Do you think there will ever be a better time in your lifetime to turn the challenge of what is occurring in the world around you…into a powerful opportunity to learn and grow and deepen who you are, while also being of service to the world around you?”

      Well put, Kelly Grace Smith. Thank you for expanding on the astrological imperative we’re finding ourselves in.

  3. Glen Young

    Its against the law here in Virginia for me to claimed that I’m Asian as well as African American.
    Sometimes its depends on the race of your mother to decide which race you really are.
    The Laws are very specific.

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