Just as Mercury kicks off one of the harshest retrogrades this year, the card for June is Asogwe Kanzo. This is a card of leadership and all the challenges, joy and suffering that is entailed in being a leader. It’s about keeping the Reglemen of Vodou, your Kanzo promises and your own place in the world. As an Asogwe, you walk in two worlds. Keeping them both in balance is your job. Your spiritual life needs to be fed, but so does your mundane. The family counts – both human and spirit. Now is a good time to do some metaphysical housekeeping. Clean the temple, freshen the linens and wardrobe, learn a new song or two, practice a new skill. Mercury is just looking to make life a little more difficult, so don’t give him the chance. Settle in and focus on yourself. It’s ok at this time to let the world go by for three weeks. It’ll be there when Mercury goes direct.
Asogwe is the rank of service to the greater community. For those holding this rank, this month will make us really take that as fact. We will be challenged to rise to many occasions that require our skills, our talents and our sanity to get through. As priests and leaders, the way we face these issues and how we handle them will say much to the greater community about whether we are worthy of the rank itself. I include myself in this as well – I am not immune to the energies that are here.
Since the retrograde went into effect, my email box has seen weird requests, tragic stories of love and loss, and one person who wanted me to do a month of ceremonies to fix their life for free. I am being tested I know. This is why when retrogrades arrive I always try to remember the “R” words – Review, Reflect, Relax, Re-think, Re-consider. This is the time to take measure, clean house and closets, reset the office, the temple and yourself. To do anything else is to test Mercury and trust me – you don’t want to test Him. He’d love nothing more than to take you out behind the woodshed and showing you who is boss right now.
This is also a good lesson for all Asogwes. We cannot and should not be quick off the mark when making choices. We need to gather information, review it, reflect on what we think and then speak. Taking your time right now is the best options. Big decisions like Kanzo, Maraj Lwa and even a simple Lave Tet can all wait until after the 14th when Mercury goes direct again.
The Shadow card for June is Makandal. I find this an interesting juxtaposition. The fierce warrior leader of the revolution is the opposing force on June’s Asogwes. Makandal was known as the poisoner, offering his deadly concoctions to slaves so they could do in their masters. He became a charismatic guerrilla leader who united the different Maroon bands and created a network of secret organizations connected with slaves still on plantations. He was burned alive in 1758 in the public square of Cap Francoise (today’s Cap Hatien). I relate the story because this is a card of detriment like LaSiren. Asogwe means leader, a person of upstanding moral and civic values. Makandal was a leader, a man who took extreme measures at a time when that was the only avenue open to him.
The influence of this card can bring down the Asogwe, just as Makandal was brought down. Be careful what you do this month. Do not overreach your talents and abilities. Be wise in your decisions and choices. Stay small for now. Makandal took extreme measures, but the time in which he lived called for such measures. However, his influence on this month can mean an extreme choice is not the wise one to make.
Take full measure of anyone asking you anything and wait until the retrograde has passed. When Mercury goes direct on the 14th, conversations will become truthful and full of honest words; goals will come into focus and rituals will have greater impact due to the clarity of Mercury direct. Makandal’s influence will still be present, but less so as the month progresses.