Through his own clinical observations and the pioneering work of Otto Rank, Stan Grof discovered the missing link between Freud’s postnatal biographical unconscious and Jung’s transpersonal collective unconscious: the perinatal dimension of the unconscious, which records our actual birth into this world.
The perinatal dimension of the unconscious includes these four Basic Perinatal Matrices (BPM):
BPM I: primal union with mother—the symbiotic union of fetus and mother prior to active labor.
BPMII: cosmic engulfment and no exit—the initiation of labor prior to the cervix being dilated.
BPMIII: death-rebirth struggle—full on labor, the cervix has dilated and mother and child are in the struggle that will lead to birth.
BPMIV: death-rebirth experience—actual birth of an individual person, which terminates the symbiotic unit of mother and infant, as the umbilical cord is severed.
BPM III is the stage of great conflict and activity as, with the cervix widened, the confluent energies of mother and fetus must synergize to birth new life. Today, 11/8, marks the segue into this stage of labor for Mother Earth and her fetus, the human race, as the frantic activity of political elections and movements impact the next phase of our embryonic planetary development.
Furthermore, the full moon has just peaked, with the accompaniment of an eclipse that has rendered it the Blood/Beaver moon. These influences contribute guidance and understanding to this stage of transformative labor.
The eclipse itself is a darkening of the light at the time of the moon’s greatest power, her fullness. This portends powerful encounters with shadow energies without the defense of the moon’s exposing light. The clash of the world’s shadow energies are palpable in our own elections and across the globe, both on the actual surface of the Earth and in the behaviors of her peoples.
From another angle, the eclipse also points to the absolute unknowing of what might happen—like a baby about to be born, we are completely in the dark. Time to buckle our seatbelts for this wild ride of sudden surprise and encounter with the unexpected. We truly do not know what will happen.
The totality of the full moon’s eclipse generates a blood red color, certainly a color associated with birth. This blood moon color is also associated with passionate emotions that accompany the chaos in the struggles for survival.
A dark and foreboding example of such bloodshed appears daily in the country of Ukraine. Netflix recently issued a powerful historical rendition of such horrific bloodshed from WWI in an enacting of the novel by Erich Maria Remarque, All Quiet On The Western Front.
The Beaver quality of this full moon offers guidance around a helpful attitude to assume in the passionate chaos of now: an unrelenting commitment to the individuation of the dream of realizing the full self.
Ted Andrews, in his book Animal Speak, points out that beavers can remain under water for 15 minutes before they must surface to replenish their store of oxygen. Clearly a suggestion is offered to use the breath to regulate the central nervous system in these calamitous times.
The beaver demonstrates the ability to maintain focus upon one’s path of heart, despite being submerged in the ruffled waters of passionate emotion. Though completely under water, the beaver never wavers in its effort to build and secure its dream home, regardless of the turbulence it encounters. Thus the guidance is: keep your personal link to intent free of attachment to negative thought, returning, incessantly, to the intent of wholeness.
Such is the determination of the fetus, who, in BPM III, is strongly enlivened to fight for its own survival amidst riveting pulsations of contractions that exact their crushing threat upon its umbilical lifeline.
Grof convincingly extends Freud’s psychosexual stages to the perinatal dimension of the unconscious, where, in BPM III, sexual energy is released that awakens the fetus to its own pulsating agency of autonomous, vigorous movement. The journey to birth through the birth canal becomes a confluence, indeed, of separate energies in both conflict and unison.
Our collective journey through BPM III now depends largely on the dream that we, as a collective fetus, choose to embrace. Of course, we are not alone in this decision, as the process involves the independent contractions of Mother Earth herself, as she shapes us through our tumultuous trauma of birth.
BPMIII can be a very long and wild stage of labor. Don’t draw conclusions too quickly, regardless of the intensity and rapidity of the various contractions experienced.
Sustainable birth in our world will be the realization of our collective soul’s dream, the ultimate intent of this Blood Beaver full moon eclipse, with its initiation of our world’s BPMIII.
Buckle up, breathe, find your body’s comfortable rhythm to navigate the confluent energies of now. Remain fixed upon the dream, with utter perseverance and equanimity.
And know, with utter certainty, that the day of full birth, BPMIV, will indeed eventually arrive.