FROM an astrological viewpoint, the Year 2016 is ushering in a period of revolutionary or even cataclysmic changes the likes of which have not been seen since the upheavals of the late 18th Century.
According to a rather obscure astrological text called the "Galendarjum Oeconomicum Practicum Perpetuum," the Year 2016 is the "Year of Mars."
The Year 2015 was the "Year of Jupiter" and 2016 it is Mars's turn to take over.
To give you a preview, World War II broke out in another "Year of Mars" ... 1939.
It means that 2016 will be about the lessons of that indomitable ancient army of male gay warriors known as The Sacred Theban Band of Lovers ... the ability to transform fear into a weapon of protection ... instead of letting fear cut you into mincemeat even before your enemies do.
It is highly ironic that the German alchemist and astrologer Dr. Mauritius Knauer devised his perpetual calendar based on planetary rulerships in the late 18th Century. His "Galendarjum Oeconomicum Practicum Perpetuum" was published just as the planet Pluto was entering the Sign of Capricorn.
And now in 2016 Pluto is again in the Sign of Capricorn for the first time since the 18th Century.
Pluto in Capricorn is about revolutionizing age-old political and economic structures and replacing them with completely new and different structures.
Just look at the changes which occurred in the late 18th Century ... the French Revolution and the American Revolution, for starters.
Look at all the political turmoil in the world since Pluto entered Capricorn in early December 2008.
And just look at all the turmoil on the global financial markets, the Arab Spring, uprisings and warfare around the world ... and a horrific resurgence of Islamic terrorism.
Pluto will remain in Capricorn until the year 2024 ... by which time many cherished and time-honored political and economic institutions will have been swept aside forever.
Ironically, the planet Uranus was also discovered in the 18th Century, and many astrologers consider its discovery to have marked the first faint Dawning of the Age of Aquarius, the sign which Uranus rules.
Uranus and Pluto have been in a tight 90-degree square aspect to each other on and off for the past two years and they start 2016 in that same tight right-angle configuration ... exacerbating all the global tensions forcing renewal and renovation.
It is going to be a very tumultuous and frightening year for many people, and it is very fitting for you to feel fear and panic in this "Year of Mars 2016".
The Warrior God's sons Phobos and Deimos (Fear and Panic) are the horses which lead Mars' war chariot ... spreading fear and panic before them as they gallop towards their foes.
Phobos and Deimos are rattling at the door, trying to get in.
But just remember that they are not trying to get inside in order to scare you.
They are trying to get inside in order to harness your chariot so that you can ride off on your Sacred Quest the same way that Mars rides off into battle with Phobos and Deimos leading the charge with shrieks and howls which send fear and panic into the souls of all adversaries.
Like Mars, you must learn to wear your fear and panic as a shield and breastplate (like the mosaic of Phobos) to fend off all who would attempt to stop you.
You mustn't repress or ignore fear and panic. You must harness their "fearsome" energies to provide you with the impetus to go forward.
It is very hard for most of us gay men to muster up self-confidence and self-assertiveness.
If we speak up or assert ourselves, we think we are being aggressive and nasty.
We are used to being nice, good, well-behaved boys.
We tend to repress our "Mars Energy" and try to ignore it. But Mars is in the natal horoscope of every person on this planet ... even nice, good, well-behaved gay boys like us. A certain amount of self-confidence and self-assertiveness is very healthy and good for us.
If we try to repress this gods-given natal energy, then Phobos and Deimos will terrorize us with the blessings of Mars. The energy has to go somewhere, so it will revert back into our souls and destroy us unless we understand how to harness it and channel it into constructive avenues.
Phobos and Deimos (also known as Graphiel and Barzabel to the Alchemists) will be powerful allies in your Sacred Quest.
Notice how they form the protective outer rim around the Alchemical Seal of Mars.
Mars is shielded by a ring of fear and panic which is turned outward away from him.
As they do with Mars, they will lead the way for you and dispel all foes and hindrances that might get in your path. You will see how enemies and barriers scatter and melt away into the shadows when you approach ... as if by magic (which of course it is).
As a follower of ANTINOUS THE GAY GOD, your life becomes a magico-religious experience.
One of the first steps toward living gay spirituality is to learn to turn your fears inside-out so they are no longer a hindrance but rather a source of strength.
Transforming fear into strength is the hardest task any human being faces.
The Ancient Priests of Antinous knew all of these things. Hadrian knew these things. They knew the "fearsome" power of Phobos and Deimos. If you look up these deities of fear (Graphiel and Barzabel, for example) you will see dire warnings about how cruelly dangerous they are.
And they ARE dangerous ... repressing our natural born self-assertiveness is very self-destructive.
It is a problem common to most gay men. It is the root of many of our neuroses and substance abuse and many other problems.
Mars energies are always tricky and potentially dangerous.
Hadrian knew all about these things and was well-versed in the "fear" of the gods.
It's like that expression about "putting the fear of god" into somebody. You have to learn to put the fear of the god Antinous-Mars in you. It is a very awesome thing. You must learn to harness it and channel it into constructive courses.
Phobos and Deimos are rattling at the door and will break it down and get inside. But rather than let them eat up your heart with their fear and panic, you must greet them and welcome them and give thanks to Antinous-Mars for sending them to you to harness your Quest Chariot so that you can ride forth.
That is the Mystery Teaching of the Sacred Theban Band of Lovers … learning how to turn around the razor-sharp daggers of fear so that they point outward to create an impenetrable force field of protection around you.
Fear can point inward to wound your heart and soul, or it can point outward to ward off danger.