I’m convinced that one of the reasons winter solstice rituals can feel so meaningful, even if you’re just taking some time to slow down and reflect this time of year, is what happens in the days just before the solstice. The Sun, giver of life and center of our solar system, makes its annual alignment with the Galactic Center (GC): the core of our Milky Way Galaxy.

From our perspective here on Earth, the GC lies in the direction of the constellation Sagittarius (and astrologically speaking, it’s late in that sign). The Sun is conjunct the GC right now, exact early yesterday.

X-ray, IR, and radio images of Sgr A* — the supermassive black hole at the center of our Milky Way Galaxy. Image credit: NASA/CXC/SAO; NASA/HST/STScI; Event Horizon Telescope Collaboration. Read about it here.

But what is the Galactic Center? Astrophysicists say the center of our galaxy is a supermassive black hole — which sounded pretty overwhelming and intimidating to me at first. Until I read that supermassive black holes actually have weaker tidal forces near their event horizon than “regular” black holes: it’s calculated to be about the same as the tidal force between a person’s head and feet while standing on Earth.

I also read that the density of a supermassive black hole within its event horizon can actually be smaller than the density of water. For real.

I don’t know if the Galactic Center is having any kind of effect on us here on Earth that is measurable by science, or even necessarily by astrology. Even so, it’s indisputable that as we orbit the Sun we face toward the center of our home galaxy this time of year.

In any case, I think it makes for a beautiful point of contact: something so massive that’s it’s barely comprehensible, so far away that it cannot be seen or measured except by indirect means, shares some very relatable qualities with a key facet of our experience on Earth: the water that makes up much of the planet and roughly 60% of our own bodies.

There’s something rather soothing about that to me. I love that a feature of our universe so foreign and abstract and astonishing can start to resonate with a sense of familiarity.

Our solar system is located on an outer arm of the spiral-shaped Milky Way. We — and all of those other stars and planets on all of the other arms — are slowly spiraling around the Galactic Center.

The GC therefore becomes a symbol of an even broader definition of “home” than our solar system or planet Earth. Even though it’s on a scale that is almost impossible for most of us to fathom.

And yet…I think there’s something about allowing ourselves to tune into this sense of belonging — slowly, quietly, gently — that can be quite profound. There is so much in our day-to-day lives that tries to tell us we are not where we should be, or not doing what we should be, or not who we should be. But what if, in the grand scheme of things on a galactic scale, we are precisely who we are meant to be, doing what we’re meant to be doing, and exactly where we belong?

That doesn’t mean that being who we are or where we belong will always feel easy or fun. (Personally, I am struggling with a few recent curve balls involving unexpected consequences. And I’m having a harder time than usual finding the inner space and sense of deep connection I often can access this time of year.)

But I do find these ideas about the Galactic Center strangely reassuring. And I’m grateful to my experiences learning astrology, and to the inner soul work I’ve done, for opening that door.

If we can tune into the sense of interconnection suggested by the Galactic Center, or the theme of finding the familiar in the incomprehensible, or even just the GC’s reminder that there is so much more beyond what we can know with our immediate five senses, maybe we can remember more often to treat each other (and this planet) a little more like the incredible miracles we are.

With love,


P.S. If you’d like to begin lightening your own “density” (spiritually speaking) or get some new perspective on your place in the cosmos (astrologically speaking), please feel free to message me about a session to close out this year or begin the new one!

P.P.S. GIFT CERTIFICATES are always available for your last-minute gift giving…

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