Be The Cause. Inspiration From Spinoza.

The philosopher Baruch Spinoza saw nature to be synonymous with God.  He saw all living creatures as a part of this whole.  The thing that tied everything together was affectivity; the capacity to affect and be affected. 

He saw everything to be relative to something else in a web-like structure.  Consciousness sits in the middle of cause and effect, attempting to better perceive this ‘web’. 

If the web of cause and effect can be somewhat perceived, something very special can happen. We can become the cause and will the effect.

If we notice that the sun makes plants grow, we can plant seeds in the right spot. If bears notice that salmon swim upstream at a certain time of year they can position themselves to capitalize on this event and fill up their bellies.

 But animals don’t focus themselves into an idea of a future that suits them on a highly individual level. They go with nature’s flow. They are nature, as we are, but with them there is no confusion. There is also no freedom to create a unique future to answer an inner calling.

 Camus said, ‘with rebellion, awareness is born.” Human awareness is free of time’s constraints. Reflective thought allows us to get outside of time’s bondage and then return to it with better ideas of navigation. The only way to navigate time is to embrace its forward push. There is no backwards time navigation and no time machines. To navigate time well is to embrace the forward push within your own chemistry.

 The web of cause and effect becomes very personal. It is now quite evident to strive to clearly see what causes your effects. Maybe the problem that you continue to face is less about circumstance and more about a mindset, and maybe not. Seeing it clearly reveals true strategies to get back to ‘forward’.

 And what about the effects that are not negative? Are you paying attention to those? This would include effects such as delight, peacefulness, enjoyment. Maybe you think that a certain tv show gives you delight but in examining the true cause it becomes clear that the delight lies in getting a taste of a certain kind of life. Maybe it’s a life of more adventure and maybe it’s a life of better simplicity. To go on enjoying the show without ever examining its true cause of delight might keep you from taking a certain action towards something wonderful for your flourishing.

 The point is that the cause and effect pattern of the wide world we live in is like an elaborate web. Scientists see much further into the web than the bear awaiting salmon. They have found ways to determine the solid causes and effects of invisible forces. They can calculate measurements that serve as learning tools for future human minds to discover even more, as they build on this knowledge. The web emerges, in plain sight for those that learn these things.

 But the web is not just for scientists, it is also for artists, psychologists, engineers, teachers, farmers, chefs, parents and athletes. Anyone can use the knowledge of this ever-growing web to their advantage. Anyone can become the cause that they want to become, in search of desired effects.

 The web is vast and worldly, but also quite intimate and immediately present should one decide to become aware of it. If we can learn what the toroscope teaches us about the ego then we can witness a very personal web that is in the constant act of being spun. The Moon, our egos, are in a continuous state of change. Constantly “arising with a tinge of the past on the fringe of the future” as the philosopher Alfred North Whitehead described. He said we inherit the past, thus we are bound to it, but we are free to create. Each moment truly is the potential to a new dawn. You can wake up to the web you are spinning, or you can stay asleep to your momentum and spin in a mechanical spidery way.

 In the zodiac, Saturn represents ’cause’. These causes make up all of science and describe the laws of our natural world.

Saturn upside down is Jupiter. The toroscopes alerts us to the reality of inward and outward connections. If Saturn is the flipside of Jupiter, they are in a sense the same thing. If Saturn is the cause then Jupiter is also a kind of cause, just consisting of fire stuff instead of earth, or willing instead of law.

What kind of cause is this? It’s a cause that stands outside of time, in fire’s eternity.

The cause is quite simply your potential to be the cause, and create an effect. Embracing this ‘reality’ within is called confidence. It is as natural to embrace this cause as it is to embrace the cause of rain falling from the sky, in fact it is more natural.

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Fibonacci Patterns and the Metabolism of Time

Libra and Saturn introduce the seasons of Fall and Winter. The leaves on the trees turn red, orange and yellow. they no longer recede into the distance like they did while green in the summer. They come forth, into our focus. We are inspired to pick up a fallen leaf and look closer at it. Winter is cold. We draw our energies in, stay inside, cook hot food and hunker down. Winter is a time of collecting our vital energies inward.

The Seasons and the wheel of the zodiac introduce a ‘time that turns’. In knowing the seasons we come to better know ourselves.

But there is another kind of time. A ‘time that burns’. A metabolism, so to speak. By transforming the zodiac wheel into a torus shape, we convert cyclic time into metabolism.

What does the Fall and Winter show us in terms of ‘time metabolism’. What happens when we draw our energies in? What kinds of things come forth, and prompt us to bring them closer yet?

What happens when we focus our energies into something we deem very worthy of our focus. With the brilliant colors of Fall and the sobering chill of Winter we peer into a beautiful relationship: the beckoning of beauty and the endeavor of effort.

Have you picked up a leaf this year to get a closer look?

Nature is capable of displaying great works of beauty. The complex design of a butterfly wing is also simple with divine laws of proportion. It is not a ‘loud shirt’ with random color schemes and mechanical patterning. It is ordered. Ordered by something wonderful that underlies all creation. The beauty of the butterfly wing is like the beauty of our own bodies with our seashell-like ears and our galaxy-like eyes. Artists were quick to recognize a kind of sacred pattern to nature in its beautiful expression. It became known as the golden ratio; nature’s divine signature of proportion.

Artists like Leonardo Da Vinci and Michelangelo would work the precision of nature’s mathematics into their masterpieces. The divine beauty that emerged was rooted in natural law. Heaven, as they could prove, is here on earth, by grace of these sacred proportions and relations. In knowing the formula of nature, with all of its divinity, one has the capacity to create natural divinity, or real beauty.

The golden ratio, otherwise known as phi or the fibonacci sequence, shows the pattern of nature as it grows. One plus one brings us to two. Two plus one to three. Three plus two to five and so on. The relation between each step is one of accumulation. The next step marries itself to what has come before it. The growth pattern is a spiral. Nothing is wasted, it all is incorporated into the design.

For a rose, there is no doubt about a ‘decision’ to continue growing and expanding. There is no confusion of a sense of self. The result is nothing short of a visible and tangible divinity.

Human beings are sometimes blessed with plenty of beauty. For some of us, the ratios are Boticelli-like, and we can thank the mysteries of our genetics.  But a pretty face will soon disappoint if an attitude non-supportive to growth reveals itself, such as cynism and shallowness.

Before birth, we are perfect little seashell swirls in our mother’s womb. After we are born our bodies continue to grow, in the divine spirit of nature. And then they stop growing. What does this mean in terms of this divine process? Do our own ‘masterpieces’, the sublime work of our living bodies stop dancing to this catchy mathematical beat?

What does growth become when it is no longer the growth of the body?

Michelangelo studied the laws of growing in order to produce beauty. If we want to produce beauty in our lives we too must learn these laws of growth. This is the essence of Libra and Capricorn. This spiral deals with learning nature’s laws, so that you can produce more nature, more beauty and more bounty.

We are the rose that grows by ‘marrying itself to what has come before.’ The rose delights in the full affirmation of the sun. Within the unity of nature there is no ‘agency of future’. Future is only biological growing. The future of the rose is the same thing as its growingness, or its health.

“A rose is a rose is a rose is a rose” Gertrude Stein

But we are free agents in a world that includes a vision of the future. We can envision ourselves in this future and we can reflect on ourselves in the past. This is how we are infinitely more related to our own capacity to grow. We share the same laws of the rose, but our world is wider and deeper. We can apply these laws to vision, reflection, and planning. We can encourage a healthy fibonacci pattern by being honest enough with what came before so we can consciously marry some freedom into something new.

The Planets Align, But How Are They Mine? Quadruple Formation in Aquarius.

Have you ever experienced the sublime satisfaction of tidying up a room? Have you ever been near-mystified by the way things just “worked out?”, or how things just, “fell into place?”

This Wednesday evening, the sky display a pretty pattern of order and meaning. Three planets will line up perfectly in an ascending diagonal line, with the Crescent Moon nearby.

The faintest light on the bottom will be Mercury, followed by Jupiter, the brightest. At the height of the diagonal will be Saturn. All of them, and the Moon, will be in the existential sign of Aquarius.

Writer philosopher Colin Wilson said that existentialism was a “philosophy of intuition”. Unlike Sartre and Camus, he saw the world as inherently meaningful, with the only thing blocking us from such meaning being our own “sensory blinders”. Ultimately, his existentialism was based on optimism just as much as realism. He saw the “feelings of inner freedoms” to be intimately bound with an effective “grasp on reality”.

“It is as impossible to exercise freedom in an unreal world as it is to jump while you are falling.”

Colin Wilson, The Outsider

With the planet of optimism and intuition blazing the brightest in the center of the lineup, its a perfect evening to ponder the vital hunches of a cheery existentialist.

Our perceptions are Mercury, the faintest light at the bottom. Faintest by design, for they keep the chaos of stimulus ordered for us. We can walk down the street without feeling bombarded by sounds, sensations and sights. Our selectivity saves us, yet it also keeps us away from our full reality.

For full reality, we have to find places of correspondences; how our physical reality corresponds to us in a personal, meaningful way. In this way we can sense our interior power, which Wilson also refers to as our reality.

Sensing our interior power is to abolish the notion that we are passive creatures. In fact, he correlates passivity with an increasing sense of unreality. If we can, for a moment, embrace his maxim that “perception is intentional”, we can begin to see how passivity really can blur reality.

“The sense of order and meaning is a direct stimulus of the will, and even mere perception springs from a will to perceive .”

Colin Wilson, Existential Criticism, The Chicago Review 1959

What does this twinkly display of order correspond to in you?

Can you feel an interior power arise in recognizing this correspondence?

Can you feel… your reality?

Saturn the planet of reality winks from the top of the line.

Happy star-gazing and as always, happy astro pondering!

Astro art by Johnnie Day Durand.

https://www.happyastropondering.com/

Hindsight and Foresight, A Full Moon on a Cold Night!

Metaphorcast 12/28/20- 1/3/21

The Mohawk Native Americans would call this week’s Full Cancer Moon, the Full Cold Moon, falling in the cold month of December.  A New Year will find us before the weekend, allowing for the phrase Hindsight is 2020 to not only be a viral meme, but also a re-wakened dream.  If myth’s are indeed, as Joseph Campbell said, public dreams (as opposed to dreams being private myths) there is indeed a pertinent myth to reflect as the new twenties gain their stride.  That is the myth of Prometheus and Epimetheus.  Foresight and Hindsight.

It was both Prometheus and his brother Epimetheus who sculpted all living creatures with clay.  Epimetheus sculpted the various animals and beasts, with their horns, scales, wings, feathers, teeth and fur.  But it was Prometheus that sculpted the humans last.  He had no special gift to give them, as Epimetheus had already given these specialties to the animals, so Prometheus decided to make human beings walk upright like the Gods, and he gave them fire.

Epimetheus, in hindsight, can see the deep seated desire of the tiger, with his sharp teeth and powerful reflexes.  In hindsight he can see the spacial craving of the bird, with it’s delicate and aeordynamic wing.  He can see the swamp king’s alpha dream in the crocodiles scales teeth and giant jaw.  But what of the human?

Prometheus made the human, not in hindsight, but in foresight.  The human, with no horn, wing, or giant jaw, no beak or fur or retratctable claw, no antlers, scales or stinging tails, nothing special here to see, except that speical quality, of vision and fire, from eyes heart and mind, we can be in two different places at the same time.

The past and the future, who’s dividing line is so slight, it makes each tiny moment it’s own fire to ignite.

As Albert Camus said, “With rebellion, awareness is born.”

Tuesday night we will see the Cold Moon, December’s Full Moon, in Cancer during this Capricorn Season.  A Cancer Full Moon is the Moon at it’s Moonest.  Whatever the Moon does for you, it does it more on the Cold Moon, the Full Cancer Moon, in this start of the Winter Season.  

To have foresight is also to have hindsight. To grasp a future is to understand it’s roots.  In the Cold Moonlight of the Ocean of Memory, that forms an endless chain back to the place of myths themselves, can you feel your reality in it’s full mythic sense? Your own private myth of dreams, and your resonance to certain public dreams of myth? What would an Epimethean set of glasses tell you about yourself.  And when Prometheus hands you that burning fennel stalk, in which way would you point it?  What would you hope to illuminate?  

As the Cold Moon begins to wane, it will still be bright and beautiful, weather permitting for New Years Eve, in the sign of Leo, the quintessential party animal.  Though parties will be at a minimum this year, the Leo Moon lights any stage with a healthy dose of drama.  A realistic re-rendering of any setting, living room, hallway, sidewalk, kitchen, as the stage that dramatically swaps out an old year for a new one.  

The newfound Aquarian energy in the sky, with the conjunction of Jupiter and Saturn, is a giant twinkly wink from Prometheus and his gift of foresight.

Foresight can make way for important paradigm shifts, like the one that happened in the 16th century, when the Ptolemic Earth-centered model of the universe was replace by the Copernican Sun-centered one.

There is a very interesting article written by astrophysicist Peter D Usher that sees Shakespeare’s Hamlet as a dramatization of this paradigm shift. Hamlet symbolizes the awakening to a new infinite and Sun-centered universe. He is ultimately responsible for the death of the old king, Claudius, who shares Ptolemy’s first name.

Portrait of an Astronomer (Nicolaus Copernicus?) Marco Basaiti
Date 1512 (funny that he also looks like Shakespeare!)

The sky during this time in history shared a key characteristic as it does now, as Jupiter and Saturn go into what’s known as a “grand mutation”, shifting from 200 years of Earth conjunctions to a new 200 years of Air conjunctions. These Jupiter Saturn conjunctions are known as trigons. The full trigon cycle is 800 years, as it passes through each of the four elements.

In Shakespeare’s time the shift was from Water to Fire, and the fire of the Sun indeed became the new center.

Now it is from Earth to Air, as the Aquarian Age truly begins.

Hindight may be 2020, but that’s old news.  Another year over and a new one just begun.  Will we see another paradigm shift in 2021?

Happy New Year all the same!  

And Happy Astro Pondering!

https://www.happyastropondering.com/

Jupiter Saturn Great Conjunction 2020!

The week begins with a lively event, as the Winter Solstice will present, the shortest day and the longest night; look to the sky for a fantastic sight.  For Jupiter and Saturn will align, and form a shining star so divine, and while this occurence happens every 20 years, they have not been this close since the days of Shakespeare!  And even then it’s predicted to have not been well-seen, for that we are looking at the early 13th century! 

Needless to say, take advantage of the extra evening darkness tonight.  Look just above the Southwestern or Western horizon after sunset.

Saturn, the planet of tangible reality, fused together with Jupiter, the planet of far-reaching possibility.

What does it mean for these two planets to unite, on this special first day of Winter, when the Sun enters Capricorn, the sign of reality. 

Is there a place, where reality and possibity unite, to form a different type of reality?

Maybe.

German physicist Werner Heisenberg was born under a Jupiter Saturn conjunction.  Known for publishing the Uncertainty Principle in 1927, he made staggering discoveries in the strange quantum world of potenitalities and possibilities.  He discovered a strange physical world, a probability wave that lived between reality and possibility.

He said, “Revere these things beyond science which really matter and about which it is difficult to speak.”

Born on the same exact day as Heisenberg was another reality-possibilist, Walt Disney.  He famously said “Fantasy and Reality often overlap” and maintained that his films were made for the child in everyone.  He spoke to children matter of factly because he saw that they were “always reaching”.  He also saw children to be “born blessed with vivid imaginations”, and he admitted that he resented the limitations of his own imagination.

The Heisenberg Uncertainty Principle speaks of a certain fuzziness to reality.  It states that the position and the velocity of an object cannot both be measured exactly at the same time, even in theory.

It’s like knowing that your car is at this exact location, and having no idea what speed you are going, or vice versa.

A strange world where reality meets possibility, shining symbolically in the sky on this darkest night.  As a New Year approaches and an old and challenging one comes to an end, what a good time it is, to get cozy with uncertainty itself!

It is uncertainty that brings about expectation, and investigation.  Lively things, alive with a sense of future.  Things that keep us reaching, and re-vivify our imagination! This Great Star in the sky, a glimmer of the Aquarian age, as both of these planets just went into Aquarius last week, the sign of future and innovation.

While certainty may seem to quell stress and fear, uncertainty, with it’s dynamism, is a reason to cheer.  As psychologist Erich Fromm said, “The quest for certainty blocks the search for meaning.  Uncertainty is the very condition to impel man to unfold his powers.”

Mercury is now in Capricorn, along with the Sun- perception is sharp- tuned in.  Perfect for beholding that briiliant night star.

Venus is in Sagittarius- celebrating the enthusiastic love of knowlege, which historian and mathematician, Jacob Bronowski saw as “an unending adventure at the edge of uncertainty.”

Mars moving onward in Aries- the most daring of planetary signatures.  Oh where would we be without the ability to dare.  Walt Disney said he like to dream, then test his dreams against his beliefs, then dare to see them through.

There it is again- that strange world- alive between reality and possibility.

Uranus in Taurus, the body electric, supporting by trine aspect the energy of the Sun and Mercury.  See the star and be the star.  The merging of the near and the far!

Neptune in Pisces – dreaming before daring

The Moon

The Moon will begin the week in Pisces, the sign of imagination and fuzziness.  Get cozy with that fuzzy aspect of reality, and let your imagination seek out peritinent avenues that slowly come into focus.

By early evening Monday, as we begin to look for that brilliant night Star, the Moon will wax into Aries, and the atmosphere comes alive with anticipation.  Though you will be able to enjoy the beauty of this “star” for the whole week, tonight when these two planets are the closest.  Its the Winter Solstice, with drama at it’s mostest!

The Aries Moon will continue through Tuesday and Wednesday- make room to dare, and do it with flair.

By Thursday, Christmas Eve, we have a larger Taurus Moon, the sign associated with nature.  Now that we have meditated on nature’s fuzzy little secret, pour some eggnog and turn the fire on the TV- these warm fuzzies are like wormholes to that world between worlds.  Where possibility and reality snuggle.  Where possibilities glisten, and reality listens.

Enjoy this Big and Fuzzy Moon for Christmas night as well, after the cookies and mistetoes have cast their spells.  Hold close the things certain, like the warmth of love, and give tidings to uncertainty that twinkles from above. 

By evening on Saturday the Moon grows quite large in Gemini, the sign of facts.  Like little pixels that continue to accumlate, and make our world a knowable place, less fuzzy.  The last timet the Great Conjunction Star was this visible was when religion held the answers, whereas now it is science.  

Heisenberg always held a strong curiousity towards where these two worlds might unite. He said, “The first gulp from the glass of natural sciences will turn you into an atheist, but at the bottom of the glass God is waiting for you.”

If there is a world between reality and possibility, where waves behave in the most mysterious ways, and sharpness bottoms out into more of a blur, this is surely the realm where blood starts to stir.

Enjoy this chrystaline first week of Winter, in all of its uncertainty.

as always, happy astro pondering!

The New Normal; Saturn in Aquarius

Saturn.  Father Time.  The planet of normalcy and status quo.  In the stirred up airy waters of Aquarius- the sign of the times.  This can only mean one thing- that we are entering a New Normal.

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Oh I don’t know, what’s new with you?

Saturn and Mars have trudged through the cold and merciless Earth of Capricorn- and now they both have emerged into the sign of the Future.  As curves are seen to be flattening- yet tragedies ever more on the rise, a compelling cry for FORESIGHT echoes through the infinite canyons of consciousness itself.

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Aquarius’ totem Greek God, Prometheus, a name that means “Foresight.”

With a desired future in mind- foresight comes naturally.  With a responsibility towards such a future, real change can happen.

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Abe Lincoln, an Aquarius- with his Sun conjunct the Ascendant.

The New Normal.  Saturn in Aquarius.  The new standards to live up to.  On a personal level as well as on a social one.  New standards like new laws.  Laws that allow nature to flourish and thrive.

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Because she’s worth it and so are you!

As Taurus Season begins this Sunday- the heart moves into a fire of homeostasis-craving Earth.  A Beauty-thirsty Season- that needs to quench its aching heart with bounty.

In the New Normal- the bounty is not taken for granted.  We have grown.  There are new responsibilities to be shared and honored.  The air in the world of the New Normal is a wake up call to true Interdependence.

Uranus- the Great Awakener, Aquarius’ ambassador planet, is also in Taurus- and for the next 6 years.

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To protect our bounty, our life and liberty, we have to take a tip from the bees!  And work together!  Fairly!  

The New Normal- emerging out of a dark time- may turn a grocery clerk, or bus driver wage into one of a Government job!  Or guarantee a health care worker that they will never be unprotected by lack of protective gear ever again!

Who knows- maybe even health care itself will be a human right not a privilege as a wise man says.

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Reality as it stands, is bizarre, and for many quite traumatic.  The future is all bound up with every churning of every gear.  Yet the power of Aquarius- is in its realization of interdependence.  The interdependence depends wholly- on the power of the individual.

The individual who, with perfect foresight, can take responsibility of the future.  Even if it’s just their own personal future, they can lead by example.  For the leaders that seek a better future for everyone- let’s hope their eyes are wide open- to the New Normal.

As Always, Happy Astro Pondering.

Don’t forget to listen to the weekly Metaphorcast here: Happy Astro Pondering

Cultivating Your Inner Cary Grant: Natural Order and Integration

The word “integrity” sure has  a good vibe to it doesn’t it?  If someone were to compliment you on your integrity would you not feel fantastic?  It feels to me that it’s one of the best things to compliment a person on.

When I think of a famous archetype of a person with a lot of integrity my mind migrates towards Cary Grant, or at least his screen persona.  His feathers just refuse to be ruffled and his moral standing seems very difficult to become compromised.

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He himself recognized the enviable attributes of his on-screen persona.

His characters embody that of charm and effortless problem solving.  Being socially graceful is of utmost importance, even when it would seem out of the ordinary.  In this way he comes across as more alive then the other characters, more awake.

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He seamlessly embraces paradox (Venus) which heightens his romantic (Venus again) disposition.

 

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Even in times of panic the look on his face is focused, even somewhat serene.  Not to mention his clothes and hair are perfect.

Venus is very apparent here.  Calm cool and collected.  Let’s examine the word “integrity”.  It comes from the notion of integration which is another very Venusian concept.  Increasing the strength of something by bringing things together.

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Like the dude’s rug that “really tied the room together” integration puts us in tune with vital energies, and strengthen our sense of self

There is a longing for us all to find order in ourselves.  Chaos happens when our energies are attuned to disintegrating qualities such as jealousy, anger, hatred etc.  The solution is assuredly not to suppress these natural forces within us but to gently get back towards SOME kind of natural and integrative mode of conduct.

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This is a famous alchemical sign pointing out that a shift in perspective can  transmute chaos into order

Instead of letting these disintegrating emotions and thoughts become deconstructive to us we must gently put ourselves back in line with CONSTRUCTIVE tendencies.  Con-(with) structure (structure) puts order back in our lives, and order is naturally in tune with INTEGRATIVE energies.

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Robbie Hart, the wedding singer, was wise to CONSTRUCT a song to channel his DECONSTRUCTIVE feelings of anger that had been brewing ever since Linda left him at the alter

Back to Cary Grant for a moment.  Social grace, integrity, personal order, how might these look symbolically in a natal chart?

consult chart

 Without knowing a thing about astrology one can see the clump of planets at the bottom of the chart.  What is the feeling that conveys?  Perhaps the feeling of anchoring?

These planets are in the signs of Capricorn and Aquarius which are both affiliated with Saturn.  Saturn itself is at the very bottom of the chart.  What planet in astrology best signifies ORDER?

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SATURN!!!

Now keep in mind, Aquarius, although co-ruled by Saturn welcomes in the bizarre.  Could this be saying that order in the natural world IS bizarre yet still orderly?

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No argument here..

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Nor here!

And what about that social grace?  The wit, the charm?  In other words, what is happening with Venus?  Well, it is in the sign of Sagittarius which embraces larger than life essences and enthusiasm.  It is squared by Jupiter which only EXPANDS it further and is opposite Pluto which serves to EMPOWER it.  OF course this is if he is working well with his own energies, and he sure seems to do that.

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The virtues Cary Grant embodies on screen speak so loud to people because they are resonant with natural laws.  Social harmony and order are birds of the same feather.

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They flock together

Personal order can be cultivated by practicing and making room for these things within ourselves.  By doing so we unite with nature and our fellow humans.

Was Archie Leach this schooled in the craft?  Archie Leach was Cary Grant’s birth name.  In a bizarre (Aquarius!) moment in the film “His Girl Friday” Grant says this.  Talk about embodying his new persona!  Watch it- it’s only 7 seconds.

That’s pretty wild right?  He isn’t who he was, he’s who he is becoming.

On a final note I want to celebrate the fact that we can all learn to tap into our inner Cary Grant in times of trouble and chaos.  With a little cool-headed grace can come a little more order and vice versa.  Constructive choices bring put us in better reception to INTEGRATING energies which keep us more settled in nature’s natural order.  Letting deconstructive choices block integration, working more to dis-integrate ourselves.  It is always possible to balance it a bit more in the natural direction.

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Happy Birthday James Dean!

James Dean, the epitome of cool.  Let’s have a look at some key components that carve out this coolness, shall we?
Data Deluxe #1.  You never know what he’s going to do. Dean has Uranus tightly conjunct his Ascendant, fusing his identity (Ascendant) with a rebellious and contrarian spirit (Uranus).  He’s just DIFFERENT (Uranus again) than the other actors of his time- or anytime!  Watching him brings about an awareness of a wild unpredictability (Uranus).  I remember seeing a scene from “East of Eden” (my favorite of his 3 movies) where James Dean and the other actor are in a locker room discussing the lucrative prospective of growing beans.  The one actor is very focused on what he is saying, meanwhile Dean is kind of hopping all around the locker room, climbing up on benches and down again and at times zeroing in close on the other actor’s personal space.  At one of these invasively close moments the other actor exclaims (in a very natural reactive way) “don’t get so close I’ll get all hot again!”.  I would put good money down saying that that line is NOT in the script.  I could be wrong but I doubt it. The point being that Dean doesn’t care.  He doesn’t care if he is making the other actor uncomfortable, or jeopardizing the script, or coming across a little looney.  He is being natural to his own whims, like a child, without being irritating (maybe a little bit to that actor).

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Dean does things his own way

#2.  He knows his influences. Before Dean was famous he was writing letters upon letters to Marlon Brando.  He was enchanted by Brando in every way.  Brando rode a motorcycle so Dean rode a motorcycle.  Brando dressed in jeans and white T-shirts so Dean dressed in jeans and white T-shirts.  Brando played the bongos so Dean played the bongos.  The emulating got to be so much that Brando wrote HIM a letter saying “You have to be YOU, not ME”. But Dean knew that what Brando was doing was starting a new wave in human culture (Brando is a double Aries, a pioneer).  James Dean has an Aquarius Sun in the eleventh, which is the house naturally associated with Aquarius.  Aquarius seeks to identify itself by challenging the status quo, and seeking other like-minded people.  The eleventh is the field of life where those like-minded relationships take place.  It’s interesting to wonder if there would have been a James Dean had there been no Brando.

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Hailing in the new wave of cool, Brando and Dean.

#3.  He shows his vulnerable side. As stated in a previous post “The Crying Game: Water planets and the comfortability in expressing emotion” James Dean has his Moon in deep and mysterious feeling-oriented Scorpio.  When he cries, the audience FEELS it.  It’s REAL. The beginning of “Rebel Without A Cause” features Dean falling down drunk on the street next to a wind-up toy monkey.  As the credits roll, he plays around with the monkey and it quickly becomes a deep emotional connection between the two of them.  The monkey amuses him with it’s wind-up talents and then Dean tucks him in with a ratty newspaper “blanket” and a party ribbon trash thing for a pillow.  He makes sure the monkey is comfortable and then he snuggles up as close to it as he can get.  The sweetness comes across SO genuine!  It’s the first 5 seconds of the movie and he’s already won our hearts!!  And yes, he improvised the whole bit, as the cast and crew stared on with admiration.

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Opening moments of “Rebel Without a Cause”

#4.  He shows a strong sense of personal authority. Astrologer Caroline Casey, author of “Making the Gods Work for You” (get it get!!) talks about how the word “cool” is derived from the Yoruba word which originally meant “responsible”.  “Cool-headed” meant that that person took care of what he should.  Like Babe Ruth with his leaf of cabbage under his ball cap.  Keeping cool-headed so he can hit the home runs.  This is Saturn talk. Saturn is authority, which starts with inner authority.  Self composure, steadiness, a sureness in what you say and do.  James Dean has a very powerful Saturn in the 10th house of career (the house naturally associated with Saturn).  It is in Capricorn (the SIGN naturally associated with Saturn) and it is opposed (bringing in a full awareness of) the powers of Pluto.  Anything Pluto touches in empowered, or it is wounded UNTIL it is empowered.

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Sureness. Self-composer. In tune with his own rhythm.

Happy Birthday, James Dean.  A true rebel with a deep and mysterious heart, forever cool.

Sophia Loren’s Uranian depth

Planets at the very bottom of the chart symbolize who you are on a deep deep deep down level, and this is inevitably tied to early life experiences.  This is also true for the sign that is at the bottom of the chart (even if there is no planet).

Let’s take a look at the chart of Sophia Loren.

Data Deluxe

Sophia has Uranus at the bottom of the chart, in Taurus.  Uranus is intense.  It’s like a bolt of lightning.   Just a glance at this chart brings about the question:  what is the intensity absorbed from early childhood that is so at the root of who she is deep down?

Sophia grew up in extreme poverty and violence during World War 2 in the little Italian town of Puzzuoli.  Her father was married to another woman when Sophia was born and even though he fathered a second daughter with her, still refused to marry.  He was an aristocrat and ignored them and the fact that they often had to beg for food.  Her mother, a beauty herself who looked like Greta Garbo, raised them at their grandparents house where Sophia often had to share a bed with 8 people.  They lived on rationed bread and hid from air raids in rat-infested tunnels.

About her difficult childhood she says “You learn the facts of life fast.  You are street-wise, people-wise, self-wise.  The two big advantages I had at birth were to have been born wise and to have been born in poverty.  As a result, I appreciate life more.”

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These pretty eyes have seen a lot of horror

This is Saturn wisdom.  It comes from learning through struggle.  It installs a sense of self-reliance.  It is also connected to the father’s influence.  Sophia has her Saturn conjunct her Aquarian Moon.  The need to be unique is tied into this kind of difficult learning.  Uranus rules Aquarius, and her second house (where her Moon is).  The second house is all about values.  There is a direct connection here to her traumatic early life and the values that she lives by.  These values will be of the utmost emotional importance to her (Moon in the second).

Humble perfectionist solar energy (Virgo Sun) fueling a need to be unique and special (Aquarian Moon).  Exquisite and ethereal beauty (Neptune conjunct Venus) that is valued and cherished by others (in the 8th).  Marriage being a powerful link to international success (Pluto in the 7th square Jupiter in the 9th)..  These are just a few other astrological shades of this enigmatic woman.

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With her Sun and Venus in modest Virgo, Sophia is not approving Jayne Mansfield’s dishy look here (which was a publicity stunt intended to upstage Sophia).

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She married film producer Carlo Ponti whom she saw as a father figure. She desperately craved a “legitimate husband, children, a family, like anyone else”. The root of that which she says is “the experience with my father”.

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Loren turned down Cary Grant’s marriage proposal.

What is the sign at the bottom of your chart?  Is there a planet there?  If not where is the planet that rules that sign at the bottom?  All of these answers can help to get you in touch with some deep truths about yourself that are inevitably linked to your upbringing.

Happy astro-pondering!