I had just made a pilgrimage the scene of my own personal nightmare, a place where I was once taken by the darkness, stripped of illusions, lost my personal power (& almost died): I attended my 20 year High school reunion. Eventually, many years later, I realised I had been under the slow burning influence of Pluto (in Santa Fe, my natal Twelfth House Pluto relocates to my Ascendant) explaining why every time I returned to Santa Fe over the years it was like jumping from the frying pan into the fire. Case in point: 2001, when I moved back home and got a job waiting tables. Then 9.11 happened. The economy shut down, and wracking up a huge debt, being re-wounded by old but still present family trauma, I left again. After that, I was sure I’d never be back. After that (as one of my high school girlfriend soul mates reminded me this weekend), I declared I will never come back again…at least not without a sage stick. How appropriate that I finally return as Pluto moves stationary-direct. How Pluto.
As a writer, I experience periodic blocks. I don’t think creative blocks are exclusive to artists. People experience life blocks all the time, periods in your life where despite your best efforts and intentions (or maybe because of them) the things you try to do just don’t seem to get traction or go anywhere. It’s as if, as I described the downside of a Neptune transit to a client recently: God presses the pause button. Then patiently waits for you to figure out that you can’t repeat the same thing you’re doing and get different results. Since you don’t have an answer, or know who or what to be yet, you might as well draw a picture, noodle around on your ukulele, chant mantras and play at being Zen. Till one day you wake up to discover you’re in a place of self-acceptance, you no longer have the same problems you once did… and you’re actually enjoying your self. [Read more...]
Astraea, the Goddess associated with Virgo, was the last immortal to live on Earth, until she left in disgust, so disturbed by humanity’s wickedness, evil and corruption. If she was truly a Virgo, she probably also developed a digestive, respiratory condition or other physical ailment from all the pollution, too. Nonetheless, Astraea became part of the starry constellation we call Virgo and when the planets pass through her piece of the sky, we too become peevish, turning a critical eye on our life, our world. All the things that we wish were different annoy us. We easily see what needs cleansing, organising, fixing, improving. Astraea’s legacy to us was the urge for a more perfect existence. [Read more...]
There are only a few people I speak to consistently on a weekly basis: my husband and my therapist. My husband is a Leo, and my therapist is an Aquarian. As I interact with entirely different personalities, I receive very different gifts. Affection, play, fun-loving antics are the Leo’s specialty. An entertainer exemplar, he makes serious business of clowning around, and his generally sunny disposition makes him impossible to be down around. A human being like all of us, he can demonstrate those other, less attractive Leo qualities, too…and that’s where the Aquarian comes in. The Aquarian has the mental clarity of a fresh spring. The Aquarian, who is innately at odds with collectively agreed upon reality, brings in different angles, tools and perspectives. Pulling on experiences the collective doesn’t or won’t acknowledge, she has over time won the hard-earned wisdom of a truthsayer. [Read more...]
Do you see me? Do you see? Do you like me?
Do you like me standing there? Do you notice?
Do you know? Do you see me? Do you see me?
Does anyone care? -Ode to My Family, The Cranberries
As an introvert, I doubt I’ll ever feel comfortable being the center of attention. While getting onstage, being in front of or even standing out in a crowd, well, the lump of fear to simply get up and put it out there is so large that I want to flee. Yet there’s nothing more invigorating than taking to the stage and expressing my Self. At some point, sometimes mid-way but always afterwards, I feel on top of the world. I feel powerful strong and fearless, like I can do and accomplish anything. I feel my Sun. [Read more...]
Always jump in the puddles! Always skip alongside the flowers. The only fights worth fighting are the pillow and food varieties. -Terri Guillemets
Today you are You, that is truer than true. There is no one alive who is Youer than You. -Dr. Seuss
Children have neither past nor future; they enjoy the present, which very few of us do. -Jean de la Bruyere
What a distressing contrast there is between the radiant intelligence of the child and the feeble mentality of the average adult. -Sigmund Freud
The end of childhood is when things cease to astonish us. When the world seems familiar, when one has got used to existence, one has become an adult. -Eugene Ionesco [Read more...]
Before the Uranus-Pluto square began making matters of life direction (and pretty much everything) tougher to unravel, it was much easier for me to offer Joseph Campbell’s career advice to those clients who were miserable in their professions. “Follow your bliss” I’d say, and point to the major career indicators in the chart: Sun (creative ego), the MidHeaven sign and Tenth House Planets (mission, purpose; what you are here to contribute to the world), Venus (joy). But in recent years it’s struck me that some people cannot or do not know how to connect their own happiness. Happiness belongs to the Moon. [Read more...]
It’s Cancer Sun season. The Sun is now ruled by the Moon, so it’s a time for quieting down, listening to the Soul. The feminine Moon presides over our heart and soul while the masculine Sun presides over the Ego, the Self, and it’s glorious prizes of achievement and recognition. While both dance across the sky of the cosmos together, how clearly our world favors the Sun over the Moon. We basically ‘go, go, go’ all the time trying to accomplish what? We scrap for replenishing down time, struggle with honoring the expression of our feelings, and all but neglect taking the time to listen to our heart. It’s a solar world we live in, and one revolving around accomplishment and ambitions because that’s the way the Sun rolls.
The result is, our lunar, or heart nature has become severely depleted, or under-nourished and often all but ignored. [Read more...]
“Remember, the entrance door to the sanctuary is inside you.” -Rumi
I first moved out to California shortly after graduating from college, and my mother’s death. San Francisco proved to be far foggier and colder than I thought. The saving grace of that first home I lived in was its close proximity to a lush forest of Eucalyptus trees and California Lilies, providing a sacred space where I could be alone with my swirling thoughts, feelings and grief. The elegant California Lily called my name, asking to be painted. Though I have a degree in art, I’d never painted, but as I painted the Lily and eventually other flowers, I found the act of painting created a container, a way to connect to the loss of my mother. So I painted, my sadness pouring into the beauty, the act of creating beauty purifying my sadness.
Is it possible to experience pain without suffering? As a person who has lived chronic illness for 23 years, and the last 11 of those with chronic pain, yes it is. Case in point: when my Fibromyalgia pain was at its most awful worst, awash with both pleasure and pain chemicals, I fell head over heels in love. Looking back, it seems miraculous because I know now that pain can be the worst form of terrorist who holds your body, soul, life hostage, at gunpoint. Yet it doesn’t have to. Pain –of any form, psychological, mental, spiritual, heart- can exist without suffering. Pain can be “what is”. We can be present to pain without loading it up with despair, hopelessness, alienation, fear, terror, separation. It’s even possible to feel grief, loss, sadness and loneliness without suffering.
I’m learning this the hard way. I’m in the middle of my Neptune square (it happens for all of us, during ages 40-42): a time when life can lose it’s magic, when it’s easy to lose your way. Watery Neptune brings in the mist-ical and mystical; its transits are characterized by feelings, feelings of fogginess, and emotions that are mythic in proportion but feel very personal. Somewhere in the fog I began emotionally identifying with the pain, and learned: ouch, that’s how pain turns into suffering.
Chronic (chiron-ic) pain is a reality of life, and for some (especially those with Chiron strongly featured in their birth chart), pain is a larger reality and lifelong teacher. At the time of this writing, Chiron is station-retrograde in the sky, turning up the volume on Chiron themes for all of us. No one is immune from the slings and arrows of life’s misfortunes, they are indeed a part of life, and no one teaches this better than Chiron. [Read more...]