The Spell of Animism. Full Moon Eclipse in Taurus

Metaphorcast 11/15-21, 2021

If the season of the witch has yet to cast its spell on you, this week’s Full Moon Eclipse in earth-magic Taurus might just do the trick. The longest lasting partial eclipse of the century will captivate its audience in the predawn hours of Friday, November 19th. The earth’s shadow will slowly cast over the Moon for a duration of nearly 3 and half hours, with its peak coverage around 4am Eastern Time. The cast of this shadow will likely display a deep red hue and be visible across the Americas, much of Asia, parts of Europe and West Africa.

If you happen to sleep through this wondrous event, let’s hope that your dreams may connect with this widespread magic. There is another kind of sleep however, non-rejuvenating and devoid of dreams. This sleep is one to be wary of. It is the ‘sleep of the senses’ that the Earth spirit warns Faust about. It is a closing off to the expressiveness of the natural world.

In his book, “The Spell of the Sensuous”, David Abram describes the human experience of magic as “our ancestral animistic awareness of the world as alive and expressive.” He says that everything ‘speaks’, and it is only through our creation of the written word that ‘the stones fall silent.’ What once was some grooves on a rock expressing meaning to us has become a paragraph in the New York Times. The alphabet and the written word is entirely human-constructed, not even the spirit of breath shapes it, the way the spoken word does. Far from saying that the written word is ‘bad’ he simply emphasizes what the written word really is: magic. This is why one can ‘cast a spell’ and ‘spell a word’. He says, “As non-human animals, plants, and even ‘inanimate’ rivers once spoke to our oral ancestors, so the ostensibly ‘inert’ letters o n the page now speak to us! This is a form of animism that we take for granted, but it is animism nonetheless- as mysterious as a talking stone.”

Even if you sleep through the Full Moon eclipse, be sure to rouse your senses enough to realize something important; the world is magical and we have the capacity to be magicians!

As always, happy astro pondering!

For more on David Abram, here is a wonderful interview where he talks about animism, magic and the senses.

https://podcasts.google.com/feed/aHR0cHM6Ly9lbWVyZ2VuY2VtYWdhemluZS5saWJzeW4uY29tL3Jzcw/episode/OTA4NDk3MjQtY2QzZS0xMWVhLWIxOTEtMjMyZjFmOWE5ZTIz?ep=14

Narrow Your Focus to Unlock Latent Powers

Metaphorcast 11/8-14, 2021

We had two significant planetary shifts at the end of last week.  Mercury’s stream of thought had been scanning the broadest horizons of Libra, and then vortexed into Scorpio in search of deeper meanings.  Venus had been preferring Sagittarian heights and big-picture orientations, but then switched her fancy to Capricorn’s goal-oriented, hard-working point of view.  We have moved from broad and high to deep and narrow.  There is a theme of focus, more specifically a narrowed focus, to unlock latent powers.

Teilhard de Chardin says that man evolved in such a way with narrowed eyes and freed up limbs so that he could bring his hands to his face in deep concentration.  Thus reflective thought was born and the rest is a very interesting history.

But what if when Galileo brought his telescope to his face he saw, among the glittering stars, a pop-up ad for a Chevrolet.  What if Thoreau brought an ipad to Walden pond, or Shakespeare concerned himself with a number of ‘follower’? What if candlelight never once bounced upon a word as its ink began to dry?  

Modern devices come with a slew of distractions and a narrowed focus becomes ever the more challenging.  

On the other hand, imagine if some of these ancient thinkers, scientists and artists had, at their fingertips, a whole library of the noosphere, like we do.  Our virtual world is a skeleton key to all kinds of knowledge, ideas and inspiration.

The question becomes how can we use our tools without being used by them?  We sure have become adept at bringing our hands to our face but how can we ensure that the original goal of doing this doesn’t get lost in the sauce? This planetary shift is an invitation to find a way back to an evolutionary drive.  An awakening of latent powers through the phenomenon of focus.

As always, 

Happy astro pondering!  

Free Beneath the Surface; Jacques Cousteau and Scorpio Season

Metaphorcast 10/25-31, 2021

Scuba diving pioneer, filmmaker and inventor, Jacques Yves Cousteau fell in love with the sea.  His ambition was to be a pilot, but his learning was interrupted by an automobile accident.  Part of his rehabilitation involved swimming in the sea.  And that’s when he found his raison d’etre.

 He said, “The sea, once it casts its spell, holds one in its net of wonder forever.”

In this last week of October, the air is foggy, saturated with mist, ocean-like and mysterious.  Jack-o-lanterns appear on doorsteps like sea urchins on the floor of the sea.  Scorpio Season has just begun with strange sights to be treasured by everyone.

You know what question the trick or treaters will ask.  But do you know who’s behind your own mask?  Or his mask or her mask?  Beneath the surfaces?  Beneath the words?  

Cousteau famously said, “From birth, man carries the weight of gravity on his shoulders. He is bolted to earth. But man has only to sink beneath the surface and he is free.”  Scorpio is this essence exactly; a freedom that only exists beneath the surfaces. 

Imagination comes alive at Halloween, an ocean for everyone to behold.  As we sink below the surface of what is usually deemed acceptable, robot cats eat peanut butter cups for dinner and nobody is alarmed by distant cackling.  

And now let’s come back to that question we asked; who is it behind your mask?

Beneath the surfaces, real motives swim like fish.  Whole schools of motives, not yet identified by science, not yet even considered in your conscious mind.  Motives that are only glimpsed in strange moments, or dreams.  

This week. Mars, the planet of motivation will be squaring Pluto, the planet of hidden motivation.  You must ask yourself;  is your day-to-day will even the least bit aware of your hidden will?  Have you given yourself permission to shake off the gravity of your perceived situation for enough of a minute to feel the freedom in discovering what might swim beneath the surface?  Who knows, you may catch a glimpse of some very interesting, highly motivated fish!   

Happy Halloween and 

As always,

Happy astro pondering! 

A new documentary on Jacques Cousteau hit theatres last week!  I can’t wait to check it out.

https://films.nationalgeographic.com/becoming-cousteau

A Bigness: Jupiter moves direct today with Mercury

More than twice as massive as all the other planets combined, Jupiter can be felt as a bigness.  After 4 months of retrograde, the bigness moves forward today in Aquarius, the sign of future.  Also moving forward today is Mercury, the planet of mind, in the open air of Libra.  Will you open your mind to find a bigness worth getting excited about pertaining to your future?  Your future could be an evening plan or a distant dream- just so long as it is ahead. If you can make this dream/plan big, you will be in swift step with the gods! 

I would love to hear what big dreams or plans you are thinking! Write yours in the comments!

#jupiterdirect #mercurydirect #bigness #existentialastrology #metaphorcast

O Sole Mio! An Aries Full Moon Comes This Way

Metaphorcast 10-18-24, 2021

“O Sole Mio”,  the beloved Neapolitan song written by Giovanni Capurro, translates as “My Sunshine.”  The first verse salutes a sunny day with the freshest air that follows a storm.  But the chorus, the dramatic turn, the part that really gets us, speaks of a different sun.  

“But another sun, 

even more beauteous, oh my sweetheart,

my own sun, shines from your face!

This sun, my own sun,

shines from your face!

It shines from your face!

A Full Moon finds us this week in the sign of Aries, the primordial spark of life, the mystery that motivates, in other words, that other sun.  When it shines it is ‘even more beauteous’ and larger than life.  

It should come as no surprise that Luciano Pavarotti, who won a grammy for this song in 1980, was born under a Full Aries Moon.  His lunar substance of soul is made up of this other sun, one’s own sun.

O sole mio!  Such a beautiful and private light.  It rises like an epiphany when it sees its own brightness reflected back from others, reflected back from the otherness of the world.  

As most operas show, it is love that moves the atmosphere; obscuring or revealing these brilliant and more beauteous rays.  Grab your earphones, or hear it with your heart! O Sole Mio! Your own sun and its spark!  

From where will it shine, this spark so divine?

Mars will oppose this Moon, expect emotional crescendos!  Pluto squaring from the depths adds alluring innuendos!  The drama of this full moon  reminds us to be in touch with what lies beneath the surface; a powerful swirl of lava that animates the soul and determines what really matters.

Such a reminder will come in handy as we transition into beneath-the-surface Scorpio season on Saturday!

As always,Happy astro pondering!

Supernatural Serenity; Venus in Sagittarius

Metaphorcast 10/11-17, 2021

Listen to this episode here

Venus, the planet of connectivity is floating with fiery exuberance in the sign of Sagittarius until early November.  With Jupiter, the planet of enthusiasm providing a supportive trine to the Sun and Mars in social Libra, it seems a good week to ponder the effect of enthusiastic connection.  

Picture a dog, your dog if you have one, running towards you with tongue out to the side, eager to connect with you, eager to embrace a tussle.  This is the spirit of enthusiastic connection.  

Thoreau called enthusiasm a “supernatural serenity”.  Finding the things that awaken this supernatural serenity stirs a special energy.  It is similar to lightning striking a rock to make a magnetic lodestone.  Once the rock is magnetized it knows where true north is.  Enthusiastic connections strengthen one’s magnetic field, making it easier to navigate life in general.

What do you like?  It wasn’t always that this word triggered the image of a blue thumbs up icon.   What you like has to do with your own mystery.  It has to do with your own mysterious road map.  It has to do with your free-will as it combines with your dynamic calling.  What you like opens up your future.  What you like is your own romantic path.  What you like is a special clue to who you are, your spark of individuality as it reaches a steady glow.  Serene and supernatural.  

If you are not in touch with what you like you won’t pencil what you like into your day.  Lightning goes wasted.  Landscapes shrink.  You will forget all about your powers of enthusiasm.  And this week, that will make the Goddess of beauty weep!

William Blake said “Exuberance is beauty”.  Venus’ connectivity is most natural when a bubbling up of enthusiasm is present.  Just imagine a fun party as compared to a boring one, or a first date with sparks versus awkward moments.  Enthusiasm and connectivity are peas in a pod.  Snuggle bugs in a rug.  They make things easy for eachother but this easiness is also dynamic like lightning.  As long as some logic mediates their passions, connectivity and enthusiasm will consistently perk up the heaviest parts of the soul.  Supernatural and serene, lightning sometimes strikes twice, 3 times or 50!  

As always, happy astro pondering!

Sparks at Dusk; Libra’s Creative Observation

Metaphorcast for 10/4-10, 2021

Listen to this episode here

William Burroughs wrote, “nothing exists until or unless it is observed.”  He said “an artist is making something exist by observing it.  And his hope for other people is that they will also make it exist by observing it.”  Burroughs called this “creative observation” or “creative viewing.”

There is a New Moon coming in Libra this week, on Wednesday October 6th.  Libra is the sign of the artist but what too soon gets overlooked with Libra is how much her artistry centers on keen observation, or how much her wit centers on impeccable listening.  Her receptiveness is active, and it brings things into existence.

To highlight her activeness, Mars will be snuggled into the New Moon.  The artist Eugene Delacroix said “Seeing artistically does not happen automatically.  We must constantly develop our powers of observation.”  

Did you ever notice how there is a certain time of evening, call it dusk, when the powers of observation seem to rush back to you as a divine gift?  Photographers and filmmakers call it “magic hour”, John Steinbeck called it “the hour of pearl” when “time stops and examines itself.”  There’s an odd suspension of duality as day and night blend.  What is observed on the outside seems more intimately connected to what is felt on the inside.  

Dusk comes with extra magic this week as it will be the best time to view the Draconid Meteor shower which will peak just an evening after the New Moon.  Unlike most meteor showers that are best viewed near dawn, the Draconids are best viewed at dusk. These fiery bits emanate from the constellation of Draco, a dragon that wraps itself around the North Pole.

Draco’s constellation is in the shape of the sign of Leo, the light of the Sun.  It hugs the north pole which, symbolically is a Lunar place, as they are both connected to the mysteries of magnetism and navigation.

He also goes by the name Ladon, which backwards spells Nodal, the intersection of the Moon’s path and the apparent path of the sun which is the ecliptic. 

Draco seems to symbolize a merging between the creative and conscious qualities of light and the magnetic, subconscious pull of the Moon.  He seems to be a blend of day and night, a creature of the dusk.

Let’s consider for a moment that fine feeling we feel at dusk, when a magic bridge seems to connect the outside world to the inner.  In that moment, with that feeling, we are also creatures of dusk.  The powers of observation are keen as can be and a certain creative fire stirs inside.  There is active receptiveness, a blend of day and night.  

There is a sense that meaningful change can be brought about, as the deep subconscious seems to be registering important new conscious observations.  A close cooperation is taking place between the conscious light of day and the subconscious dark of night.  There is a hope that our habits might shift into ones that better serve our futures as we begin to remember a mysterious sense of purpose.

Venus has been in the depth of the subconscious in the latest degree of Scorpio but will begin her ascent back to the light of day on Thursday, the day after the New Moon in the fiery confidence of Sagittarius. The artist arises full of renewed life. 

Van Gogh said “art demands constant observation”. 

The same could be said for the art of living. 

Until next time,

Happy astro pondering

Wascally Wetwogwade! Mercury Retrograde

Listen to this episode here

Metaphorcast 9/27- 10/3, 2021

Kierkegaard famously said, “Life can only be understood backwards: but it must be lived forwards.”  

Understanding things is the mind’s job, represented in the zodiac by Mercury, the quick-silvered Messenger of the Gods.  It moves forward very quickly, faster than any other planet in our solar system.  But 3 times a year, it gives the illusion of moving backwards and we find ourselves in the spell of Mercury retrograde for about 3 weeks.  Good thing Mercury is the planet of mind, which is good at understanding life in a backwards fashion.  Mercury goes retrograde at the beginning of this week on Monday, September 27th and will continue its moonwalk until October 17th.  As we continue to live forward, let’s also see how well we can employ our minds to look backwards, and better understand the lives we lead.

Looking back is synonymous with reflection.  When you look in a mirror, there you are as a reflection looking back at yourself.  As Bob Dylan sang, 

When you wake up in the morning, baby, look inside your mirror

You know I won’t be next to you, you know I won’t be near.

I’d just be curious to know if you could see yourself as clear

As someone who has had you on his mind.  

In this romantic instance, a lover’s reflection, far away from her, wagered to be stronger than the actual reflection looking back at her from a mirror right in front of her.  

Distance is of little importance when it comes to the power of mind.  The Extended Mind Thesis, created by philosophers David Chalmers and Andy Clarke states that the mind extends into the world by use of tools and other minds.  The idea is that just like a prosthetic limb can become part of a body, technology such as computers or even notebooks become part of our minds.  You say you know the time and then look at your watch, or that you know where something is then consult your smartphone.  Your mind extends into your environment.

And then there’s the matter of other minds!  Other people’s ideas allow us to think of thoughts that we never otherwise would have.  Just think how limited our minds would be if ideas were never shared!  Ideas are like oxygen, the air we share. 

Thinking and looking back has a wide network of assistance.  It isn’t just you alone in your head indulging in some “me time”.  It is your mind, out in the world, entangled with the ideas that have inspired you, shaped by the people who you love and admire, made more efficient by the tools you use. 

When you reflect, when you look back, certain things can happen that simply can’t happen while looking forward.  Threads show up and some declare themselves as common.  Dots appear that beg to be connected.  Patterns emerge.  Connections converge.  Before you know it, you are sitting in the middle of a movie that has a definite plot.  It is this kind of 4th wall shattering that credits Mercury as a bonafide trickster.  “Down in front” yells Bugs from the back of the theater.

That’s right, it’s a wascally wetwogwade, with you in the center of it.  

This year has been a year of air sign retrogrades for Mercury.  After retrograding in Aquarius through most of February, and Gemini through most of June, we are now looking into most of October with a Libra retrograde.  Above all, Libra is an otherness.  

No matter how much your reflection in the  mirror looks like you, it is still fundamentally not you.  The otherness of who looks back at you in the mirror is similar to the otherness of your mind as it extends into the world.  Silver provides the best reflection, and remember, Mercury is liquid silver.  It is fast moving silver, reflecting with a silly symphony of extensions from notebooks to neighbors.  It is you and not you.  The more not you it is the more you you may become. That is to say, the more you embrace the tools and inspiring ideas that surround you, the more you may come to understand the life you live, and feel a fuller sense of who you are.  

Maybe that is why we can see the rabbit in a Full Moon. 

That’s All Folks!

Until next time,

Happy astro pondering!

Hashtag No Filter:  The True Beauty of A Fall Sunset

Metaphorcast for 9/20-26, 2021

Listen to this episode here

The first day of Fall arrives this week on Wednesday the 22nd, as the Sun takes its symbolic fall in Libra, whose glyph shows a setting Sun.  Sunsets are known to become more vivid as the weather cools due to the air becoming drier.  Less water vapor means less haze, and the pure array of lilac, peach and scarlet hues reach the eye in all of their splendid purity.  

It is similar to the phenomena of dry humor.  The absence of  emotion in one’s expression allows the full dose of the humor to come charging forth.  Buster Keaton, a Libra himself, discovered this as a child on the Vaudeville stage.  He realized the audience responded better to his stony expression than if he smiled.  

The power lies in the contrast.  The lack of emotion contrasts with the absurdity.  With the cooler weather sunsets, the lack of haze contrasts with the intense beauty that finds us anyway.  It is nature’s version of a hashtag-no-filter.  Of course, beauty lies in the eye of the beholder.  A hazy sunset is more beautiful to some, but it isn’t more vivid.  Vivid images are strong and clear, in real life and also emerging from dreams, memory and imagination.

Speaking of dreams and imagination, an enchanting Harvest Moon will begin the week in the sign of Pisces.  Spin some records, light some candles, whatever comes to mind. In Pisces, this moonlight is of the softest variety.  See how you might soften your own mood to better embrace such a special glow.

Softness, dreams and imagination have a certain superpower to restore mystery to the mundane.  Reality becomes enlarged as false filters are lifted.  Here we have the inner life’s version of a hash-tag-no-filter.  The eye becomes vivified and vision is vitalized.  This is the reason why dreams and imagination have such potential to be vivid.  The challenge is to flex the muscle of the imagination and try to answer this question posed by Da Vinci:  “Why does the eye see a thing more clearly in dreams than the imagination when awake?”

Vivid images vivify.  Clear and sharp images are like crowing roosters, stirring up an inner dawn.  These images can be found anywhere, in life, dreams, memory, and imagination.  All that we need to do is relate to them.  

DH Lawrence wrote, “we must get back into relation, vivid and nourishing relation to the cosmos and the universe.”        

The vivid beauty of a fall sunset will find you despite your mood.  Sharp and brilliant, showing a beauty that exists beyond one’s preferences.  A very alive and vital beauty that exists beyond the “eye of the beholder.”  A nourishing wink from the cosmos.  An invitation to relate to it, and vivify your soul. 

This beauty is like a truth, that will also find you if your inner atmosphere is clear enough.  If the doubts, and false beliefs can evaporate, leaving you with nothing but the dry air of observation and a willingness to relate to what comes forth.  

The clearer the atmosphere, the farther you can see.  On the clearest day if you look out at the ocean, your eye will take you about 3 miles out as the Earth begins to curve.  On a clear day, city buildings can be seen from 50 miles away.  But think of this: the planet Saturn can also be seen on a clear night.  Saturn is 746 million miles away.  

A clear atmosphere, be it an autumnal sky or our consciousness freed from swampy moods, will allow for a greater distance of view.  With a greater distance of view comes a wider network of relations.  A wider network of relations opens up possibilities.  And possibilities that open up vivify the future.  A vivified future brightens the present, the place where life and love live, in all of their lively ways.  

Happy Fall and as always,

Happy astro pondering 

Worthy Illusions; Neptune’s Never-Ending Dance

Metaphorcast 9/13-19, 2021

Listen to this episode here.

It is said that all rivers flow to the sea, but what about those rivers of thought that run through each person’s mind.  Do they also flow to the sea?  Some place that one would rather be?  A world that is ideal, a place of dreams?

When was the last time you said the words “there is no place I’d rather be?”.  What beautiful illusion surrounded you then?

This week Neptune, the planet of dreams and illusion will not only be the closest to earth this year, the Blue Giant will also be fully illuminated by the Sun.  Though it will be but a small blue dot in all but the most powerful of telescopes the fact remains, bright and beautiful illusions are within reach.

Now don’t go thinking I’m talking of flat trickery.  The Mona Lisa is an illusion, its fake would be a delusion.  Illusions are the arts, the beauty in life that points towards the divine, the places where creativity is breathed back into existence.  Cast aside those delusions, those fakes, those things that cheapen the reality of true illusion.  

True illusion expands hope and creates a kind of inner buoyancy.  True illusion finds you on a sunny day in a garden as a kind of veil seems to be lifted to reveal a new layer of crisp beauty.  Delusion on the other hand throws up more veils and narrows the view.  Somewhere beyond the sea, the real me spots a liar.  

Mark Twain said “Don’t part with your illusions.  When they are gone you may still exist, but you have ceased to live.”

Einstein himself called reality a very persistent illusion.  

The question becomes, which illusions are worth your time?  Which illusions do you bond to as tightly as sodium might bond to chlorine?  Which places or ideas in your mind stir an electricity that sparks action at the most intimate and quantum level?  There is nothing delusionary about a sequence so sacred as this.  

Mars, the planet of action, moves into artistic Libra on Tuesday, the same day that the fully illuminated Neptune will reach its closest proximity to earth.  Art in action at the height of illusion!  Bob Dylan said that “art is a never-ending dance of illusions”.  The stage is set for an epic performance!

It is art, with its never-ending dance of illusions which ultimately gives order to the chaos of existence, just as science does to the natural world.  

Never delude yourself into ignoring your most worthy illusions.  

Beautiful dreamers, 

Happy astro pondering