There's been quite a planetary pile up in Aries. The full moon accented it and reminded me of what tremendous stress, fear and challenge that tax season used to bring up for me. It doesn't help that right now is the ten year anniversary of the start of the Iraq War. The justice and peace loving part of me used to cringe at the thought of giving the US military industrial complex any more money, but I was paralyzed by the overwhelming sense of powerlessness.
The Aries people in my life are some of the fiercest protectors of fairness that I know. It's an impulse that arises in each of us this season. There's this energetic need for things to be "right" right now. We get angry. We get horny. We are pushed forth with the bursting new life and spring energy, catapulted out of sleepy wintertime blues. Aries evokes primal desire and the ability to act to get those desires met.
The war-mongering hyperyang that gets us into what feels like endless military insanity sometimes shows up as the Aries energy run amok as evidenced by this being the time of the Iraq war's beginning. It's also a place that we can look to find the remedy, the salve.
I knew something needed to change in terms of how I relate to my taxes and I knew it had a lot to do with military spending. I sat and meditated and prayed and mulled it over. Like a lightning bolt, I recalled a couple folks in my earlier life mentioning war tax resistance. I had no idea what that really meant, but I knew it was time to explore it. I was electrified.
The War Resisters League created a great text discussing all the ways that folks participate in this small, but meaningful form of aligned warrior protest. I found out activists in my hometown were some of the founders of the movement. I found out that I could withhold the percentage of my taxes that went to war and still pay the rest. I found out I could place the money I withheld with a local group where other war tax resisters put funds to be donated to help our community. I ascertained the risks. I wrote a letter to the IRS about the spiritual call I'd received to do so. I still felt scared, but I felt the support of my ancestors holding that fear and supporting the small courage to act in alignment with my values. It was Aries at its best.
The IRS did eventually threaten to put a lein on my bank account and take the funds. I did eventually pay them the full amount knowing that that the interest from the funds for those few months went to causes I truly supported. I liken that to backing down at a protest before the police break your wrist. We all have our own levels of participation and comforts with risk.
Once when I called to discuss my case with an IRS agent, I explained my commitment to withholding this money from the war machine. He replied that as a Veteran, he really appreciated what I was doing! Now as I prepare for round two, I've never been happier to do my taxes.
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