Thursday, July 4, 2013

Saturn Stations and the Conservatives Dig In

The Sun is currently traveling in Cancer, the sign of the People, of Women, and of Wombs.  The Sun is symbolic of Kings and leaders and Heads of State.  Say hello to Egypt, where only a year ago, a dictator was ousted and a democratic election took place.  Morsi of the religiously conservative Moslem Brotherhood was elected, but with only 39% of the vote.  In a country where women have been pushing the bar for equality and secularism has been gaining a toe-hold, the conservative leadership was only barely tolerated, until they could not be tolerated any more.  The people (Cancer) were not going to settle for a sham of a democracy after so many years of dictatorship under Mubarak... they wanted a democracy de facto, without the accompanying oppression of a conservative party that was more concerned with control, than governing.  On Wednesday, the military took over, placing the President under house arrest, and suspending the constitution. 

I’m happy they’re gone.  They were power hungry.  We’re afraid they’ll react violently after this news.  But now the people are awake.  We know the truth and we won’t elect them ever again.
(as quoted by a young Eyptian engineer)

 And then there’s North Carolina where Women and Wombs became the center of controversy last week.  Across the US there have been a series of attacks against women’s health clinics that also perform abortions.  Once again, religious conservatives (Saturn trine Neptune) have been attempting to force through anti-women State laws, under the persuasion of our own version of a “Christian Brotherhood”.  After the recent protests in Texas inspired by Senator Wendy Davis’ famous filibuster, and then again in Ohio, the legislators in North Carolina chose to pass their legislation without any public notice and into the evening hours, when they thought no one would notice.  Well, people noticed.  Women want to make their own decisions, and are willing to fight for their rights even in this extraordinary climate of conservative autocracy. And they’ve been making their voices heard loud and clear.

It is within this atmosphere of instability and change, that we approach the New Moon in Cancer on Monday.  A New Moon that coincides with Saturn’s station Direct.  One thing that Saturn feels uncomfortable with is change and impermanence.  Traveling through Scorpio (issues surrounding sexuality and reproduction), and in mutual reception with Pluto in Capricorn, there is a tendency to want to hold on to, or even turn back the clock to the way things used to be.  No matter how out-dated, how irrelevant, decrepit, or costly.  No matter how much they have to control others, or force others to a regressive conservative ideal that less and less people are buying. 

There is another expression of Saturn’s station in Scorpio, and that is about creating and building sustainable structures that we can truly depend on.  The key to Saturn’s station Direct, is not about propping up the remnants of the decrepit ideals of a former age with duct tape and rhetoric.  It’s about facing reality.  As Saturn stations it is closely trine Neptune.  Neptune dissolves boundaries, and strives for democratic inclusion. This coming New Moon is in Cancer, the sign of the People, and is about planting seeds in fertile ground that will eventually create a firm foundation that is inclusive of all the people in the society.  The military in Egypt have announced a new roadmap for the country’s political future, supposedly agreed on by a wide range of political groups calling for new elections and attempting to secure and guarantee freedom of expression, and representation of all.  

Sunday, March 24, 2013

The Last Letter of Tomas Young

I stood in the freezing cold in the Winter of 2003, with hundreds of thousands of other people rallied behind steel gate enclosures outside the UN, as police officers on horses paraded like jailers, shoving and prodding the offal (us) within.  We shared cookies and sentiments and drank hot drinks in our containment area.  People chanting, people carrying signs.  I carried a radio to listen to the voices.  Millions of people protested throughout the world, to just say No to War.  “This is an immoral War,”  the people said.  But the people were ignored.  The people were rendered irrelevant in the face of the Bush/Cheney plan for the Iraq War against Saddam Hussein. 

I write this letter on the 10th anniversary of the Iraq War on behalf of my fellow Iraq War veterans.  I write this letter on behalf of 4,488 soldiers and Marines who died in Iraq.  I write this letter on behalf of the hundreds of thousands of veterans who have been wounded and on behalf of those whose wounds, physical and psychological, have destroyed their lives....

It was 10 years ago on March 19, 2003 that the United States invaded Iraq on the false pretext that Saddam Hussein was hiding weapons of mass destruction.  They rallied their allies behind the pain of the recent 9/11 attacks of which Iraq had absolutely no part.  It was six weeks later that President Bush stood arrogantly under a banner reading “Mission Accomplished” declaring the end to the Iraq War.  But the “War” segued into Operation Iraqi Freedom,  which ultimately became a 9-year multi trillion dollar US military occupation. 

I write this letter on behalf of those veterans whose trauma and self-revulsion for what they have witnessed, endured and done in Iraq have led to suicide and on behalf of the active-duty soldiers and Marines who commit, on average, a suicide a day.  I write this letter on behalf of the some 1 million Iraqi dead and on behalf of the countless Iraqi wounded....

Saturn is retrograde in the sign of Scorpio, a sign associated with death and destruction, and we can retroactively look back now, at all the lives that were lost, the lives that were destroyed because of the choices of those who had the power to do so.  Because of the selfish choices of a few.  This week, Saturn is still involved with Pluto in Capricorn (wealth, power, transformation) and Chiron (the wounded healer), which is joined by Mercury, the planet of communications, of letters, of the voice. 

I write this letter, my last letter, to you, Mr. Bush and Mr. Cheney.  I write not because I think you grasp the terrible human and moral consequences of your lies, manipulation and thirst for wealth and power.  I write this letter because, before my own death, I want to make it clear that I, and hundreds of thousands of my fellow veterans, along with millions of my fellow citizens, along with hundreds of millions more in Iraq and the Middle East, know fully who you are and what you have done....

Jupiter also perfects its square to Chiron this week, the aspect of the false prophet, the arrogant authority who claims to be a healer, but who does not listen, who will not listen, assuming they have all the answers, and therefore do not need to listen.  To hear the voices that said No.  Mercury will be here as well in Pisces, the unheard, the silent voices speaking to the wind.

You may evade justice but in our eyes you are each guilty of egregious war crimes, of plunder and, finally, of murder, including the murder of thousands of young Americans ~ my fellow veterans ~ whose future you stole...

And finally we have a Full Moon in Libra, which shines a very bright light on the Uranus/Pluto square on Wednesday.  Mars perfected its conjunction to Uranus on Friday and will square Pluto on Tuesday, while Sun and Venus in Aries perfect their conjunction to Uranus next Friday.  When the Uranus/Pluto cycle is reactivated, as it is this week, we come to the realization that things that we had previously tolerated, are no longer tolerable.  Mars can bring up a well of self-righteous anger and protest.  It can be volatile.  And it can also be a potent motivator for change, realization and even enlightenment.  Uranus/Pluto cycles are great opportunities to implement much needed changes in society as well as in our personal lives.  Of pursuing the ideal of becoming “the change that you would like to see in the world.”

I have, like many other disabled veterans, come to realize that our mental and physical wounds are of no interest to you, perhaps of no interest to any politician.  We were used.  We were betrayed.  And we have been abandoned.  You, Mr. Bush, make much pretense of being a Christian.  But isn’t lying a sin?  Isn’t murder a sin?  Aren’t theft and selfish ambition sins?  I am not a Christian.  But I believe in the Christian ideal.  I believe that what you do to the least of your brothers you finally do to yourself, to your own soul...

Tomas Young is the Iraq veteran who was the main subject of the documentary “Body of War” produced by Phil Donahue and Ellen Spiro.  The film focuses on Tomas’ injuries, his rehabilitation and his political awakening which then led to his becoming an outspoken anti-war activist.  Paralyzed from the chest down when he was struck by a sniper’s bullet in Baghdad’s Sadr City, he has been riddled with health complications which have left him dealing with relentless and unbearable pain.  As a consequence, he has made the mindful decision to end his life some time this year.  But not without first releasing his “Last Letter” to George W. Bush and Dick Cheney.  When asked how he wants to be remembered, Tomas Young replied: “I fought as hard as I could to keep another me from coming back from Iraq.  That is what I want to be remembered for.”  Saturn retrograde in Scorpio.  We will remember.

My day of reckoning is upon me.  Yours will come.  I hope you will be put on trial.  But mostly I hope, for your sakes, that you find the moral courage to face what you have done to me and to many, many others who deserved to live.  I hope that before your time on earth ends, as mine is now ending, you will find the strength of character to stand before the American public and the world, and in particular the Iraqi people, and beg for forgiveness. ~ Tomas Young

a copy of Tomas Young’s last letter can be read in its entirety here: Last Letter

for more on Tomas Young and the “Body of War”: Tomas Young and the End of the Body of War

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

The Aries Ingress 2013

On March 20th, at 7:02 AM EDT in the US, we welcome in the Aries Ingress.  It coincides with the Vernal Spring Equinox in the Northern Hemisphere, and the Autumnal Equinox in the South.  This is when the Sun crosses the celestial equator on its northward journey, and the length of the days, equal the length of the nights.  The first day, the first degree of the first sign of the western tropical zodiac, is seen as a herald and indicator of the year ahead.  An Astrological New Year that sets the tone for what we can anticipate everywhere in the world.

For the past few years, Uranus and Pluto were newly entered into the cardinal signs Aries and Capricorn.  Being early in the degrees, they played an important part in the events that transpired over the months that followed.  We’ve seen drastic financial fluctuations, discontent related to civil rights issues: marriage equality, women’s rights, children’s rights.  Uranus/Pluto cycles are times when gross inequalities that had been previously tolerated, become no longer tolerable. 

Although Uranus and Pluto are moving away from the early degrees, Mars, the ruler of Aries, is only just approaching its conjunction to Uranus and square to Pluto, made even more relevant by the fact that the Moon in Cancer is drawn into this activity forming a Cardinal t-square.  A very unpredictable, emotionally charged, potentially explosive, picture. 

When a man has learned within his heart what fear and trembling mean, he is safeguarded against any terror produced by outside influences.  Let the thunder roll and spread terror a hundred miles around: he remains so composed and reverent in spirit that the sacrificial rite is not interrupted.  Such is the spirit that must animate leaders and rulers of men ~ a profound inner seriousness from which all terrors glance off harmlessly. ~ The I Ching (ChĂȘn/ The Arousing, Shock, Thunder) 

One area where we should probably be concerned is in the weather.  Aries is a fire sign, it is hot, and inclined to conflagration, which could mean fires, explosions, or impulsive, inexplicable violence.  With Pluto in earthy Capricorn, we could be looking at earthquakes or volcanic eruptions.  And because Aries is hot and square the Moon in Cancer (food, water), we might be looking at more devastating droughts.  With the current climate mess, this is not a pretty picture.  Any or all of these events could likely take place anywhere in the world at any given moment.  What is of concern is the Moon’s involvement, which represents the People.  Meaning that these events could occur in populated areas.   

But also because of the Moon’s involvement, this t-square also paints a very politically unstable picture.  It could almost feel like more of the same of what we have been witnessing these past few years.. but this is dangerous, impulsive and unexpected.  Like riots, revolts, and massive protests.  Those who identify with the Mars/Uranus dynamic will feel like their freedom and rights have been compromised in some way.  The tipping point will be reached, and all it will take is some sort of catalyst to light the simmering fuse. 

Those who identify with Pluto in Capricorn will perceive the Mars/Uranus people as threatening their power and stability, as dangerous and unpredictable, and needing to be controlled.  Pluto can be ruthless in this regard, and the results could be quite devastating.  Pluto represents those who wield the power.  The way to navigate this weather this year is to seek the higher perspective, and avoid engaging or aggravating potentially violent episodes through any power plays, if at all possible.  Withdraw if need be, but observe.

He doesn’t recognize that it’s his submersion in the warrior culture, where violence is the means of getting respect and power, as the reason he can break the face of the woman who bore him four children.  When woman is lost, so is man.  The truth is, woman is the window to a man’s heart and a man’s heart is the gateway to his soul.  Power and control will Never outweigh love. ~ Jada Pinkett-Smith

Cardinal squares also mean the necessity for change.  Change whose time has come.  The Moon in Cancer is not only symbolic of the People, but Women, and Women’s Movements, Gender Equality, and Healing the wounds of fear, shame and subjugation.  The Moon also forms a Grand Trine in Water with Saturn retrograde in Scorpio and Mercury, Chiron, Neptune in Pisces.  Together they create a Healing Circle gathering the alchemical waters of the Divine Feminine.

Violence against women and girls is becoming recognized finally as a major issue in the international human rights agenda.  This violence includes rape, trafficking women and girls in the sex trades, domestic violence and cultural mores that allow mutilation, murder and abuse of women in societies where they don’t have the tools or resources to defend themselves.  Gender-based violence is extremely widespread and embedded.  Empowerment, as symbolized by the Moon/Pluto dynamic within the Grand Water Trine are essential, not only for women to heal, but for us all to heal and grow as a global community. 

We are not meant to stay wounded.  We are supposed to move through our tragedies and challenges and to help each other move through the many painful episodes of our lives.  By remaining stuck in the power of our wounds we block our own transformation.  We overlook the greater gifts inherent in our wounds ~ the strength to overcome them and the lessons that we are meant to receive through them.  Wounds are the means through which we enter the hearts of other people.  They are meant to teach us to become compassionate and wise. ~ Caroline Myss

As of this writing, 53 countries have taken some sort of initiative to end violence against women in their communities.  According to the UN “Say No To Violence” campaign, violence against women and girls is the most pervasive human rights violation in the world, where up to 7 in 10 women will have experienced violence in their lifetime.  Last year when a 14 year old girl named Malala was shot by the Taliban in Pakistan for advocating that girls be educated, it became a global issue, as we all prayed for her speedy recovery.  When the Taliban controlled Afghanistan, it was touted as the most misogynistic country in world history.  Yet it was Afghanistan, which was the latest country to commit to the UN initiative, committing to ensure the laws of their country not be misapplied, when it comes to violence against women.  Despite inroads being made, there are deeply entrenched traditions that undermine progress.

There cannot be national security without women’s security: there can be no peace when women’s lives are fraught with violence, when our children can’t go to schools, when we cannot step on the streets for fear of acid attacks. ~ Mary Akrami (Director of Afghan Women Skills Development Centre)

This is the story of Chironic healing, the Divine Feminine as Wounded Healer.  Moon in Cancer trine Chiron in Pisces, trine Saturn retrograde in Scorpio.  Deeply ingrained patriarchal traditions are being revised on an individual level, all over the planet, and is therefore barely being noticed, and yet indescribably transformative.  We hear of the atrocities: a young woman brutally raped on a bus in India; an intoxicated girl raped while others watched and did nothing in Ohio; a girl shot for wanting to get an education.  And we stand stricken with compassion, as well as a desire to take action, make a difference, make our voices heard for equality, justice and civil rights.  And nothing can stop this wave.  It is a wave that is already unfolding. 

If there is no friction, then there will be no fire.  Mars/Uranus can ignite even the most benign seeming of sparks.  So tread carefully this year, since things could move quite quickly in this weather.  Tread carefully, but don’t stop paying attention.  These aspects require a willingness to adapt to changes as they arise.  The more resistant, angry or resentful people are, the more difficult this time will be.  What these times are good for is being motivated, and taking the initiative to implement much needed changes that are probably long overdue.  Take advantage of opportunities as they arise.  The radical cardinal t-square just increases the urgency of needing to implement those changes sooner rather than later.  Changes that lead to a healing and a conversion through the auspices of the Water Grand Trine, on this, our planet Earth. 

When we as a society begin to value mothers as the givers and supporters of life, then we will see social change in ways that matter. ~ Ina May Gaskin

Monday, December 17, 2012

Solstice 2012

When Uranus is square Pluto, which continues through 2015, it becomes evident that some sort of change needs to occur.  With Pluto in Capricorn, the sign of government, laws, limits, regulations, and the infrastructure; and Uranus in Aries, the sign of the warrior, violence, anarchy, rebellion, revolution and change... this energy can devolve down to thoughtless violent acts of destruction, or it can serve as a catalyst for change.  This awakening, and awareness that some sort of change needs to occur, usually comes through a series of ‘surprising’ events, that let you know that the reality that you thought you knew, is no longer valid.  And that things that we have been tolerating up until this time, are now intolerable.

“We cannot tolerate this any more.  These tragedies must end, and to end them, we must change.” ~ President Obama

This year alone, there have already been six mass shootings, and a record number of casualties, with 110 people injured and killed, even prior to the incident in Connecticut.  In almost every mass shooting there was evidence of the killer having had signs of mental illness, and in most of the cases, the guns (many of these semi-automatic guns) were purchased legally.  In Newtown, CT, the killer had two hand guns and a .223 Bushmaster semiautomatic assault rifle in his possession, that had been purchased by his mother.  She was the first of his victims.  He then went on to massacre 20 very small children, and 5 more adults, before committing suicide. 

The astrology was simple but alas unforeseeable due to the nature of Uranus, the planet involved.  Uranus, the planet of surprise, unexpected events, and ‘instability’, had just stationed direct the day before.  When Uranus stations, as it did, it gives that planet all that much more strength.  Uranus is the planet of ‘outsiders’, people who don’t quite fit in, the banished, and the eccentric.  In the vulnerable, it can manifest as extreme anxiety, and even panic attacks when Uranus stations.  In the unstable, it can manifest as sporadic, and impulsive, even frightening behavior.  

Belabored by a difficult progressed Sun opposing his natal Pluto, which can manifest (especially in those who are unstable and vulnerable), as a preoccupation with death, with power, and feeling smothered, controlled, or ‘powerless’.  The killer's behavior seems to have been triggered by the Uranus station which was on his natal Mercury (thoughts, mind), and possibly square his Capricorn Moon (we don’t have his time).  Contrary to reports which described this individual as having planned this for some time, this looks more like an impulsive and possibly compulsive, reaction to forces that this individual was ill equipped to handle. 

From the start, it looked like the actions of a mentally ill individual, who was not in control of his actions.  This was evident, not only by the event itself which was unfathomable, but also by the astrology at the time of the event.  Moon (the emotional state) was in Capricorn and occulting Pluto (death, power, control), having just separated from a square to Uranus (sudden, impulse, unexpected actions, anarchy).  Moon/Pluto is often associated with psychological vulnerability, and tucked away in the 12th House (the hidden enemy within) of the event chart, this indeed describes someone who was psychologically unstable, who lived silently, and relatively unseen within the community. 

Transiting Pluto may have also been conjunct the killer’s natal Moon in Capricorn.  Pluto, being an outer planet, is like a conduit of all of society’s ills, karma, choices, being brought to bear on the psyche (Moon) of the individual.  The mentally ill, the emotionally fragile and vulnerable, are often subjected to and therefore expressive of the psychological zeitgeist of the society.  Like a psychic sponge, they can also be a karmic channel for what plagues us, from the unseen, but very real underbelly of the society within which they live.

"Guardians of Light" by Sattva

What is interesting is the current Jupiter Yod (miraculous and/or fated or karmic events), nestled between the Moon/Pluto conjunction, and Saturn in Scorpio, Pluto’s sign (death, power, compulsions, obsessions, as well as weapons of destruction and power).  Jupiter can make things larger, but Jupiter is also the planet of awakening, spiritual truths, truth in general.  In the midst of this carnage, there were stories of incredibly inspiring and heroic deeds on the part of the teachers, and first responders.  With Mercury opposing Jupiter (confusion, misinformation) we had a lot of misleading information as well.  However, with Jupiter here at the apex of the Yod, which perfects on the Solstice, will we finally see some enlightening legislation that will help to prevent, and even eradicate these mass killings in the future?  This Yod presents an opportunity to do just that.  And in the face of extraordinarily strong gun lobbies, this certainly would be something of a miracle.  However it is up to us.  We can choose as we have always done in the past, to just ignore our broken society, and hope that these incidents would just go away by themselves.  Which they will not.  If we choose to ignore them, they will only get worse in Uranus/Pluto weather.  Or we can do something about them. 

Like all Americans, our hearts are broken by this terrible tragedy. We send our thoughts and prayers to all those directly affected. Across the country, we will be giving extra strong hugs to our kids when they come home safely from school. But in the name of those who didn't and in the name of the eight children and teens that die from guns every day in our nation, we cannot let it end there. We have to take terrible moments like this and use it as a catalyst to demand the sensible change in our nation that is too long overdue. We are better than this. ~ Dan Gross, president of the Brady Campaign

To compound the issue, mental health funding has been plummeting for decades. Since 2009, states have cut billions for mental health from their budgets:

Across the country, states facing severe financial shortfalls have cut at least $4.35 billion in public mental health spending from 2009 to 2012, according to the National Association of State Mental Health Program Directors (NASMHPD). It's the largest reduction in funding since de-institutionalization in the 1960s and '70s. In fiscal year 2012 alone, 31 states that gave their numbers to the association reported cutting more than $840 million. ~ Daniel Lippman (Huffington Post)

When people seek treatment for themselves or loved ones in this country, there are not enough psychiatric beds available, not enough treatment services or outreach programs.  Medical Insurance companies have inadequately covered mental illness.   Hopefully, the Affordable Care Act which recently passed in Congress, and is about to go into effect over the next few years, will help to place mental illness on the same level as other health issues.  Often the only options for the mentally ill are jails (because no one knows what else to do with these individuals) or living in the streets.  45 percent of homeless people living on the streets suffer from mental illness.  To benefit the mentally ill, not only helps them, but also helps society as a whole.

There are mentally ill and violent people everywhere.  But we are the only country that seems to make high powered weapons readily available to them.  Even though there are supposed to be background checks on guns, 40% of the guns sold in this country are done so without any sort of background checks at all. 

Mayan Pyramid, Sun, Waves by Victor Habbick

When the Mayan Calendar ends on the Solstice this year, and on the heels of such a calamitous event, this could feel very much like the end of life as we know it.  Their long count calendar, which spans over 5,000 years, is made up of 13 sections, or Bak’tuns.  The last of these Bak’tuns began in about 1618, a time which saw the eradication and decimation of what remained of the Mayan culture, religion, codices (books) and temples.  It is said that about 90% of the natives died at this time, from small pox and influenza caught from the Europeans, since these were diseases that they had no immunity to.  Their brilliant astronomical knowledge and culture has been virtually lost with the destruction of their records and temples by the Christian priests and soldiers.  It would certainly seem at these great times of transition within the context of the Mayan calendar, that there are broad changes visited upon societies, often in the midst of chaotic upheaval.  But the Mayans never predicted that this would be the end of civilization.  Quite the contrary.  If anything, it appears to be, like all great beginnings, an opportunity for our race of humanity to evolve.

The Mayan long count seems to work much the way the Astrological Ages seem to work.  Rather than starting and ending on a single day with some sort of cataclysmic event, these are long term transitions, often with a great deal of unrest, as the old order has reached the end of its necessity, and the new order unfolds.  And although we still have several hundred years for the actual beginning of the Age of Aquarius, we can see the ground being prepared, and the old guard holding on for dear life, and digging in their heels.  The Age of Pisces, was an age of mysticism, religion, secret societies and blind faith.  The Age of Aquarius is an age of Universal Brotherhood, the establishment of a global village, civil rights, and a broader more expansive intelligence, brought forth on the wave of technological advancement. 

Much of what appears to be “New Age” or “Alternative” are actually the seeds being planted for the new age to come.  And with the Jupiter Yod perfecting itself on the Solstice this year, it certainly seems that we are being given an opportunity to grow, to broaden our understanding, to be enlightened to some degree.  If anything, the transition of the Mayan Calendar seems to coincide with an evolving consciousness and an awakening.  And even for those who don’t believe in any of this, they too will benefit.  And even for those who resist, and feel threatened and consumed by fear.  Even they will benefit despite themselves.   But to gain the most benefit of this magnificent Solstice and period of transition, is to embrace it, and to be open to possibility.  The more we strive for truth, justice, and enlightenment, the greater will be the results.  We are the ones we have been waiting for.  It is up to us to fulfill our destiny.

There is a River flowing now, very fast,
It is so great and swift that there are those who will be afraid,
They will hold on to the shore, they will feel they are being torn apart
and in doing so will suffer greatly.
Know that the River has a destination.  
The elders say we must let go of the shore, push off into the middle of the river,
keep our eyes open and our heads above the water.
And I say, see who is there with you and Celebrate.
At this time in history, we are to take nothing personally, least of all ourselves,
for the moment we do, our spiritual growth and journey come to a halt.
The way of the Lone Wolf is over.
Gather yourselves.
Banish the word struggle from your attitude and vocabulary.
All that we do now must be in a Sacred Manner, in Reverence and Celebration.
We are the ones we have been waiting for.
~Message from the Hopi Elders

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Uranus/Pluto and Conflict in the Middle East

The recent Scorpio Eclipse on November 13th has engaged the charts for both Israel and Palestine setting the stage for the next Act of the Uranus/Pluto square activity in the Middle East.  The Eclipse was conjunct the Sun in the chart for the proclamation of independence of Palestine (November 15, 1988; 0:40 AM UT) and opposite the Sun for the Israeli declaration of Independence (May 14, 1948; 4 PM 2E; Tel Aviv).  Uranus and Pluto sit on the angles of the Palestinian chart.

And as Mars, the planet of war and aggression has moved into Capricorn it will once again engage the revolutionary and rebellious Uranus/Pluto square.  Every time Mars triggers this square, violence escalates somewhere in the world.  The combination is explosive, and is not a positive omen for an area of the world that has always been a potential powder keg.  In areas of the world where tension already exists, this combination can be a catalyst for great upheaval and even deadly violence and destruction.  Writer Lara Aburamadan poignantly describes what it feels like to be “Trapped in Gaza” (the New York Times), in a world of “worn-down concrete”, where the “rebar protrudes, like pipe cleaners or a broken femur.”  

“Each day here lays bare the ugliness of war, and for my siblings and me, each scene of the movie starts the same: we are trapped.  And that is where our story begins and ends.”

Pluto in Capricorn is showing us where power has become overwhelmingly leveraged or abused.  Uranus engenders the seeds of revolution, and even the fall from power of those in high places redistributing the power.  Pluto in Capricorn lays bare the underlying problems existing in seats of power, and Uranus challenges these for stability.  When the radical warrior Mars enters the picture it does not just ignite anger and violence out of nowhere.  It only ignites powder kegs that were ready to explode... all that was required is the flame.  It manifests in the areas that are most vulnerable and fertile for such violence, such as we have been seeing in Gaza.

Upheavals, and even wars do occur during Uranus/Pluto cycles.  But also a lot of good reforms can and do take place during these cycles as well, allowing revolutionary and new solutions for change to transpire.  Examples of this were Gandhi’s Salt March, and Martin Luther King, Jr.‘s non-violent civil rights marches.  However, here in the United States where Israel is supported in its “right to defend itself”, Congressman Ellison alone emerged as a single dissenting voice in Congress calling for dialogue and negotiation to help save lives in the region.  Egyptian-led forces are presently attempting that dialogue, even as Israel continues to bombard the area.  At least 50 Palestinians have been killed in Gaza including many children, and more than 400 have been wounded according to medical officials, thus far.

photo by Majdi Mohammed/AP

Mars approaches its exact square to Uranus next Friday the 23rd (explosions, aggression and violence), and then joins Pluto at the nadir of the Palestinian chart on the 27th of November. It does not bode well.  Mars will also sextile Saturn which may serve to consolidate some power behind the Palestinians as Pluto, the planet of death, rebirth and reformation, is engaging their chart in a very powerful way.  President Morsi of Egypt has vowed to stand strong with the people of Gaza, while also influencing Hamas to temporarily end its rocket fire on Israel, even as Israel continues its air strikes.  Israel has vowed to stage a ground invasion, which is likely to bring the level of the conflict closer to that of a war.  In preparation for this, Israel’s Defense Minister Ehud Barak has authorized the call-up of 75,000 troops, and amassed thousands of troops and tanks all along the Gazan border in recent days.  President Morsi has warned that a ground invasion by Israel will have “repercussions” across the region.  This would not be a good thing under the current weather.

photo by Jack Guez/AFP

In and of itself, Pluto sitting at the nadir of the national chart is indicative of an old order passing, and a new beginning about to transpire.  Unfortunately, Mars currently joining Pluto just deepens the will and a desire to survive against all odds, that leads people to resist even the most powerful and apparently insurmountable of obstacles.  This is an aspect of domination, control, and physical violence.  It is also an aspect of reformation, exposing the dark underbelly of a society where stark inequality of power has created just such a potential for violence to occur in the first place. 

There are bound to be huge changes in the infrastructure of Palestine over the next several years as Pluto and Uranus continue to engage in this struggle for new and emerging paradigms to be born.  The diplomatic activity in Cairo actually is illustrative of Hamas‘ rising influence in contrast to the weakening Palestinian Authority, since the Arab Spring brought Islamists to power, already changing the paradigm.  In the mean time, may we pray for the safety and well-being of the people in this region, and that an equitable and peaceable solution finally be negotiated.  The nadir of the chart can also be indicative of “the end of the matter”.  May it be so before too many lives are sadly lost.

The previous periods when Mars was engaged were in August 2011, when the London riots occurred; in July of 2012 when a mentally deranged man entered a movie theater in Colorado and opened fire on a packed audience; and currently November 2012 where we see the escalation of violence in Gaza.  Since the inception of the Uranus/Pluto square we have seen many uprisings in the Middle East including Tunisia, Egypt, Libya and Syria, with unrest in Jordan and Saudi Arabia as well.  We have also seen the manifestation of extreme weather events: droughts, monster storms, flooding, and fires, as well as the devastating earthquake and tsunami in Japan.  This is indeed a time of great unrest and instability, calling for new strategies and solutions.   

Pluto in Capricorn: 2008-2024
Uranus square Pluto: 2011-201
Mars square Uranus opposite Pluto: Aug 3-13th, 2011
Mars opposite Uranus square Pluto: July 14-21st, 2012
Mars square Uranus conjunct Pluto: Nov 19-30th, 2012
the next hot spot to watch:
Mars conjunct Uranus square Pluto: Mar 19-30th, 2013

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Hurricane Sandy and Lord Neptune

An old infrastructure and an old system, is a bad combination. ~ Gov. Andrew Cuomo
Neptune Calming the Tempest by Peter Paul Rubens (1635)

The Frankenstorm that was once Hurricane Sandy had all the hallmarks of Mercury square Neptune written all over it.  This was the prevailing aspect of the day, as Mercury, the planet of wind, entered Sagittarius (big blustery wind), and not only entered into mutual reception with retrograde Jupiter in the windy sign of Gemini, but then made an immediate square with Neptune, the lord of the briney deep.  Fueled by a Full Moon on the 29th of October, and Mars opposing blowhard Jupiter, the tides rose up to 13 feet above normal and flooded coasts and inland low lying coastal regions in New Jersey, Pennsylvania, New York and Connecticut.  The storm then merged with a Nor-easter dumping several feet of snow in Virginia and the North Carolina mountains. 

“So for those of you who are on the barrier islands who decided it was a better idea to wait this out than to evacuate, and for those elected officials who decided to ignore my admonition, this is now your responsibility,” Governor Chris Christie said, “We will not be able to come and help you until daylight tomorrow.”
Weather experts and politicians pleaded with people situated in low-lying vulnerable areas, to evacuate.  But many refused, even the Mayor of Atlantic City who encouraged his constituents to stay, which Gov. Christie referred to above.  This also had Mercury in Sagittarius (communications colored by belief, perceptions altered by misconception, exaggeration) square Neptune (confusion, deception, fear of deception, seeing only what you want to see).  After Hurricane Irene came and fizzled out after a lot of pomp and circumstance in 2011, many perceived the clarion call of danger about Sandy as a great deal of exaggerated posturing.  They didn’t believe it was going to be as bad as everyone claimed it could be. 


Atlantic City in the Aftermath of Sandy

Neptune is also a sign that dissolves and negates.  When coming up against the winged messenger, the message is lost or becomes garbled.  So the experts and politicians begging and pleaded like Cassandra, only to have their pleas fall hopelessly on deaf ears.  The intent of their message was not heard.  Mercury/Neptune also implies distrust and fear of loss.  People did not want to leave their homes, their belongings, and did not necessarily trust the messenger, never mind hear them.  Until it was too late to leave any more. 

Mercury, the winged one, also is the planet of travel and transportation which came to a halt in the aftermath of Sandy.  All the area airports closed, New York City’s extensive mass transit came to a halt, and the ubiquitous fallen trees and debris blocked rails and roadways.  This was from my notes for my New Moon Workshop on October 15th:

“Confusion reigns from October 27th thru November 15th!  This feels a little like the King of Hearts here... Terrible time to travel.  Avoid it, if it can be helped!  Things will get lost, connections missed....”  To say the least.

West 8th St. and Ave. C in New York City

And in the background still hovers the Uranus/Pluto square of necessity for change.  Changes that can no longer be ignored or their necessity denied.  Pluto in Capricorn periods are those in which it becomes evident that structures, the very infrastructure itself, are either old and decayed, or outmoded, or no longer relevant, and may in fact be self-limiting, and/or dangerous.  This was certainly evident in this storm, as power went dead and power plants failed and even exploded, like so many cascading dominoes.  But what was also evident, is that a new system, a new strategy, a new infrastructure is now necessary for what is being termed The New Normal.

Breezy Point in the Borough of Queens, New York

Hurricane Sandy was the 19th hurricane in 2012.  The average number of tropical storms and hurricanes have increased with each passing decade.  After a Summer of rampant and destructive wild fires sweeping across the midwest, while crops failed slogging through a relentless drought that left much of the West looking like a barren moonscape, we are not only privy to more frequent storms, but more massive monster storms.  Remember the monster tornadoes in 2011? The floods in Australia?  The crazy snow storms in Russia? The rare and inconceivable, has now become the new normal.  Sandy covered a massive area of the United States never before seen.  To deny the human participation in global climate change is not only irresponsible at this point, but criminal. 

I really believe that the idea that carbon gasses cause global warming is the greatest hoax ever presented to the American people.~ Senator James Imhofe (Oil and Gas companies have donated millions of dollars to Imhofe’s campaign) 

According to George Lakoff, professor of cognitive and linguistic science at Berkeley University in California, global warming systemically caused Hurricane Sandy.  Systemic causation is not direct.  You don’t know when it will happen, or where it will happen, but we know that it will.  Even a part of a 1 degree rise in temperature adds enough energy to equal a number of atomic bombs, so that all this extra energy is coming to the earth, which systemically is causing droughts, fires, and monster storms and catastrophes.  Its results are now legendary.  And we can no longer, through the auspices of Mercury square Neptune or any other configuration of delusion, be ignorantly self-deceived, seeing only what we want to see, hearing only what we want to hear.  The truth is here, and it cannot be denied. 

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Saturn enters Scorpio ~ Waiting for the Apocalypse

Between Mayan Calendars, End of World scenario films, your conspiracy theory of the week, and these guys: Doomsday Preppers, we have no end of grist for the Saturn in Scorpio crowd.   It would not be a surprise to find their numbers growing exponentially, when Saturn leaves Libra in early October for Scorpio, the sign of extremism... or as Saturn in Scorpio people like to call it, “Being Prepared”.  Put a bunch of Saturn in Scorpio people together and before you know it, they’ll start competing with each other as to who can live off the grid better than the next guy.  It’ s about survival.

For those of us born during the Saturn in Scorpio periods, we entered the world reluctantly, and quite convinced that this was a treacherous place, once we got here.  Much of that was easily reconfirmed by our experiences.  In my (mid- 1950’s*) Saturn in Scorpio generation, if our parents weren’t divorced, we kind of wished they had been.  It didn’t take long for us to figure out, that squatting under a flimsy desk at school, probably wouldn’t do much good in the event of an actual nuclear disaster; that even Presidents aren’t safe in a world filled with violence; that wars are where you go to die; that sexuality and drugs, imposed on us at an early age, would only distract us from some of the pain.  If they didn’t actually kill us. 

But I kid the Saturn in Scorpio crowd.  Saturn in Scorpio is not just about conspiracies, drugs, sex, fear of death, and survivalist meet-ups. Saturn in Scorpio is also about evolution, growth and transformation. 

The famous Scopes Trial took place in 1925, which declared that John T. Scopes had violated the law by teaching evolution in schools, creating tension between ‘modernists’ who argued for the validity of evolution, vs. religious fundamentalists who said the word of God as revealed in the Bible took priority.  Hence the famous “Monkey trial” on the creation/evolution controversy took place in Tennessee.

Saturn in Scorpio is also about this:

Saturn in Scorpio is about identifying with the powerless, the underclasses, the persecuted or the disenfranchised.  These are the people who have been shunned by society, either because of sex, class, race, religion, ethnicity or sexual orientation.  And by doing so, it is very easy to fall into the primal mode of blaming someone else, the powers that be: the oppressors, the government, the 1%, the corporatists, the leftists, the other political party, your boss.  But by doing so, we make the mistake of handing our power over to the very people we perceive to be the problem.  Saturn in Scorpio works best, is most powerful, by supporting and working towards a cause, as opposed to fighting against the evil Dark Lord oppressors.  It’s also, interestingly enough, about understanding how we participate in our own oppression.

Claudette Colvin was actually the first person, at the age of 15, to resist bus segregation in Montgomery, Alabama in 1955.  Her case preceded Rosa Parks’ incident by 9 months. She participated in the court case decided in 1956, that ultimately ended bus segregation in Alabama.  The reason her case was not as publicized as Rosa Parks’ was, was because she was a teenager, and became pregnant out of wedlock.  Civil rights leaders worried about having her represent their movement, given the social norms of the time. 

In our quest to make ourselves and the world a safer place, a more secure place, questions about insurance, about saving (not stockpiling) for a rainy future, about using our taxes judiciously, about providing for the weakest and poorest through social programs such as social security, medicare and medicaid, New Deal type programs that will put people back to work and back on the payroll... we’re talking about a Contract with society, that takes care of all of the society, not just the well-heeled and powerful.  It’s about our responsibility to each other.  It’s about stabilizing those programs that are working, but discarding those programs, those contracts, and reorganizing our plans for the future that are not working out, and are not sustainable, and replacing them with others that are more stable and sustainable. 

And most of all it’s about the cycle of reciprocity.  Life is a karmic cycle of giving and receiving.  And it needs to be sustained by our participation in the cycle.  If we frown on the receivers as takers and moochers, then we don’t understand how this cycle works.  If we only give conditionally, out of the expectation of getting something back for ourselves, then we don’t understand how this cycle works.  If we act as if there are only a limited amount of resources, and we have to stockpile as much as possible for only ourselves, or our own little group, then we don’t understand how this cycle works.  An isolated pond that does not receive fresh water will eventually stagnate and die.

Moving BBC News reports in 1984 about a famine plaguing Ethiopia reported that thousands were dying of starvation and millions more were at risk.  As a result the European Economic community made millions available to help combat the famine.  Meanwhile that Christmas, Bandaid recorded its charity single “Do They Know It’s Christmas?” to successfully raise money for the famine as well. 

Saturn in Scorpio cycles are about pooling our resources in order to be able to benefit everyone in the group, family, society, tribe.  It’s about realizing that in order to give to our fellow man, there also have to be receivers, who are then able to reciprocate through the same cycle of giving and receiving.  And if we give only out of the expectation of power and/or reward, then we are karmically bound down by the attachment to the fruits of our actions. 

For this is what Saturn in Scorpio is truly about.  It’s understanding the intricate and hidden workings of the Divine Law of Karma, and our ultimate disengagement from selfishness, and the necessity of making the same mistakes over and over again.  It’s about honoring our contracts with each other.  It’s not about the Apocalypse after all.  It’s not about destruction and dying.  It’s actually about being reborn.  Arising from the ashes of our former lives better able to rebuild, rebirth and rehabilitate.  It’s about discovering the hidden meaning of the Phoenix Fire Mystery.

Thus the seer,
With vision clear,
Sees forms appear and disappear,
In the perpetual round of strange,
Mysterious change
From birth to death, from death to birth;
From earth to heaven, from heaven to earth;
Till glimpses more sublime,
Of things, unseen before,
Unto his wondering eyes reveal
The Universe, as an immeasurable wheel
Turning forevermore
In the rapid and rushing river of Time.

~ Henry Wadsworth Longfellow (Rain in Summer)
Longfellow had Saturn in Scorpio

* Recent Saturn in Scorpio generations are: 1924-26; 1953-56; 1982-85