21-22 Gemini/Virgo/Sagittarius/Pisces cross

  • Gemini: A Barn Dance.
  • Virgo: A Royal Coat Of Arms.
  • Sagittarius: A Chinese Laundry.

  • Pisces: A Man Bringing Down The New Law From Sinai.

Let's first look at the Sagittarius symbol, because it is fascinating.  Looking up cultural connotations of Chinese Laundry here, the relevant comments are as follows:

The issue of immigration in America in the late 19th century (also the time when the phrase "barn dance" was coined) meant that "white Protestants were more welcome than white Catholics who were generally more welcome than white Jews, who were more welcome than Asians, who were more welcome than Africans... the laundries where not great places to work, and the reason they were so much associated with the Chinese was that Chinese people often had difficulties getting other work... when the economy suffered during the Great Depression, laundry work became more desirable to a larger number of people. For this reason, what was once a target of scorn became also a target of jealousy as a whole category of jobs seemed to only be going to a particular ethnic group" (John Hanna, 2014, stackexchange.com).

Looking at the symbol in the context of the cross, we see the progression from the hoi polloi enjoying some social time (Gemini), with a group distinguishing themselves from the others (Virgo) separate from the less welcome members (Sagittarius).

The Piscean symbol recalls the story of Moses visiting God at the top of Mount Sinai and bringing down the 10 commandments, which took him approximately 8 visits to the top.  The 10 commandments were basically: to worship only God, honour your parents and the sabbath, don't worship images or idols or false deities, don't blaspheme or murder or steal or lie or covet or commit adultery.  In this context, the danger of the Virgo coat of arms is that it could be worshipped rather then signalling which clan you belong to.

According to John Hanna, the Chinese laundries in the 19th century were also associated with illegal activity which were to some extent true but also unfair as white people also conducted themselves illegally related to the laundries.  To my mind, I think of how people can project their shadow side onto others without taking responsibility for their own dark side, and so the Chinese at the time were convenient scapegoats, while others thought themselves nobler than they were.

So the Pisces symbol brings some order to society, everyone is on the "same page".

In Elsie Wheeler's time, the Chinese laundry could have an echo of undesired association but more likely there was societal attraction to the wealth that the work accumulated (Virgo) that was held by one specific group, which immigration law (Pisces) would have tried to subvert for the Chinese, so the opportunity (Sagittarius) would be equally available to others (Gemini).

To make this cross more general (and benign), I interpret the symbols as follows: a barn dance (Gemini) is the metaphor for society including everyone, and there is opportunity in society to distinguish ourselves (Virgo) or earn a living at a certain station in the social order (Sagittarius), which is governed by established laws (Pisces) in order for everyone to get along and society to function (Gemini).

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