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!

Timing is Everything; Virgo’s Magic

Metaphorcast for 9/6-12, 2021

Listen to this episode here

Labor Day comes this year on a New Moon in Virgo, a sign that like no other, knows the magic of timing.

If it weren’t for timing, no one would have ever figured out how to grow things from the ground.  Plant seeds at the wrong time and nothing will happen, harvest at the wrong time and the bounty is lost.  Through her diligent observation of nature’s timing, Virgo flourishes alongside her craft.  

Some say that timing is everything.  Miles Davis famously said, “Timing isn’t the main thing.  It’s the only thing.”  Some credit their success to being in the right place at the right time.  

One thing is for sure: nature has certain right times and right places.  What is also true is that human nature has the right times and places as well.

Rightness is embedded in our very anatomy, as feelings inform our moral reasoning.  It has been said that Pythagoras believed the entire cosmos to be constructed of right triangles.  

Time is cumulative, like character, like meaning.  It builds upon itself, like good music.  Just as a crowd can’t help but join in on the chorus, sometimes a time becomes so ripe that one can’t help but join in on its promptings, sing along, jump into a strong moving current, do that thing that your nature is screaming at you to do.  

Everyone longs for those right moments, when the stars align and things go right.  As a matter of fact, on Labor Day 6 planets will be in trine aspect, an aspect that favors easiness, smoothness, even luck!

Virgo has another key to the puzzle, however. In her natural humility she does what is so often forgotten to be done.  She listens.  Just like the original farmers listening to the land, she listens to what her surroundings are relaying to her own nature.  The right angles of the cosmos are the right angles of her body’s feedback.  The sphere of her surroundings include the cosmos.  The growing circle of her timing, which may also be called a spiral, includes what Emerson called “the cumulative force of a whole life’s cultivation.”

It’s not so much that she prays for luck, or right timing, but rather she enjoys a certain interplay; between the motions of her surroundings and how they speak to the motions of her inner life.  Her dance partner is the arena of life.  Her own control comes with her dominions over time.  She makes a humble pledge to cultivate timing, and thus cultivate her life, her character.

Timing is alive in the present which is beyond description. 

Timing is at your disposal at any moment.  Pause even a word in a sentence and you can  change a whole meaning, as any actor or comedian knows.  

There is power in timing, but it won’t come without listening.  True power is relational not dominating.  True power comes with listening as much as acting.

By Friday Venus will move into Scorpio where she will travel until October 7th.  Venus relates and in Scorpio she relates with power.  Use the gifts of this Virgo New Moon, and remember the power of timing.  A power that comes with listening- to the promptings of your surroundings as much as the promptings of your mysterious nature.  

If timing is everything then you must be timing too!  

From one timing to another,

Happy astro pondering   

Metaphorcast 11/2- 11/8, 2020

November has begun with the thinning of the Sun.  The gloaming of a very strange year, what new new normals might appear? 

This week marks a sweep of change- a tango of the normal and the strange.  Over the weekend we changed the sequence of time, setting our clocks back before to bed we climbed.  The birth of daylight’s extra hour, puts 60 more minutes in your power, to get out there and cast your vote, but like many others you may have voted remote!  Which in case, good for you!  As Thomas Jefferson said, “We do not have government by the majority, we have government by the majority who participate.”

Changes of time and changes of government- two structures of order changing within days of each other.  Scorpio, the current Sun-King, is delighted.  The tango of order and change lies at the core of it’s dark matter heart, as does the waltz of normal and strange.  Ray Bradbury said, “Time is strange and life is twice as strange.” 

Normal and strange, order and change.  The renewal from that which is rearranged.

In the Season of change-relishing Scorpio, its totem planet, Pluto, continues a long journey through the atmosphere of Capricorn, the sign of time, order and normalcy.  As we know, normalcy is now something new.  Jupiter and Saturn are also in Capricorn- bringing in themes of hope and structure.  What structures might we hope to see emerge as new, in your personal life as well as in the world?  How can we bring these structures into existence?   

Socrates said “The secret of change is to focus all of your energy not on fighting the old, but on building the new.”  Bucky Fuller’s idea was to “build a new model that makes the old one obsolete”.  

Mars, Scorpio’s other totem planet, is championing the “new”, in Aries, the dawn of a new day.  What new worths have been unearthed that you’d like to pursue?  What rings out in the dark as profoundly true?  A blueprint of that model new, to build and put your energy into!  And don’t limit yourself to what you see as possible.  Use the full power of the Scorpio’s  strange quantum-verse.  Truth is indeed stranger than fiction.  Mark Twain saw this to be true because “Fiction is obliged to stick to possibilities [and] Truth isn’t.  

Mercury, the planet of perception moves direct on Tuesday, election day, in social-minded Libra.  Forward with decisive social action.  

Venus also in Libra- making absolutely sure that you are a part of this process!  Participating, in the life of change and order.  As Pete Seeger said, “Participation- it’s what’s gonna save the human race.”

Uranus the planet of future in bountiful-building Taurus.  Building that new model that makes the old one obsolete.

Neptune in Pisces- the emergence of truth in a sea of darkness.  

The Moon

The Moon will begin the week big in Gemini, a curious mood thirsty for new information.  Your clock may set itself back, but don’t rely much more on autopilots- a curious mood requires engagement! 

By early evening on Wednesday she continues her gibbous wane into Cancer, the sign of response.  To respond to change as an explorer of that dark matter- seeking the true in the strange- the profound in the outer bounds.  The poet Paul Valery saw this type of exploration to be philosophy’s purpose; “to return from the familiar to the strange and, in the strange to confront the real.”

By the weekend a Leo Moon wanes into its 4th quarter, playful and spontaneous.  Its getting late in the year, and winter will soon be here.  Leo Moons inspire self-creation, to which maturity bears much relation.  To mature is to, in the words of philosopher Henri Bergson “go on creating oneself endlessly.”  

Order and change, normal and strange, preserving each other with progressive exchange.  In participating we anticipate

the mountain range of the Aquarian Age!

As always, happy astro pondering!

https://www.happyastropondering.com/

Virgo Season is Here!

It is the month of September, where the roar of the summer lion begins to fade and the air becomes a bit crisper.  Students head back to school with sharpened pencils and fleshed out schedules.  It is the month of the Harvest, where in true Virgo-fashion, crops are gathered and sorted to be stored for the long winter ahead.

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The Virgin prepares for times ahead by organizing her resources.

Virgo paves the way for Libra to usher in the Autumnal Equinox later in the month, when for a brief moment, day and night are equal before night claims the upper hand.

Virgo season is here.  The question is, what does this mean for you?

Read you monthly Evergreen Astrology horoscope by clicking link below!

September Evergreen Horoscopes

The Virgoan Mind of Howard Hughes

Today we are going deep into the astrological makings of a very complex man.  Ladies and gentleman, I give you Howard Hughes!

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This man claims to have been born on Christmas Eve but his baptist records put him on the more mundane date of September 24.  With balanced features like his (not to mention all the women and the charm) it is no surprise that he is in truth, a Libra.

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Note: this is an equal house chart (where each house is an equal 30 degrees).  For anyone that is strictly Placidus or whatever else I say don’t worry!  The big themes of a chart always find a way of making themselves known no matter what system you use..  I am not insistent on this house-system I just find it the easiest to understand.

The first thing that really draws my eye into his chart is that Mercury at the very bottom of the chart.  It is in Virgo (the ever over-analyzing, perfecting and exacting scrutinizer) and it is under some serious pressure.

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DiCaprio gave a very compelling performance as Hughes in Scorceses’ “The Aviator”.  Here he gives us an excellent glimpse of Hughes’ Mercury in Virgo (extreme focus on precision).

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But uh oh.  Here it is again :/

Howard Hughes seems to have acquired the brunt of his OCD from his mother, who used to scrub him clean all through his childhood and teach him to be afraid of germs.

His Mercury is found at the bottom of the chart right on the 4th house cusp.  This is the place in the chart that is associated with the Mother and early childhood (because it is the house that is connected to the sign of Cancer).

Mercury is the planet associated with our thinking.  It is always listening and responding to our environment (like DNA!)

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The caduceus (symbol associated with Mercury) look like the double-helix of DNA.  Information in and information out.

Hughes Mercury (thinking) is under pressure from both Mars and Pluto via the square aspect (an aspect of 90 degrees).  So let’s meet the personal “bullies” of Hughes’ mind!

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Hughes’ Mars is in the expanding and daring fiery sign of Sagittarius.  His masculinity and motivations (Mars) are tied to travel and spirited adventure (Sag).

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Like no other sign, Sagittarius says “Go big or go home!”.  This picture of his highly ambitious “Spruce Goose” sums that up pretty well.  It still remains the largest airplane made to date.

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Here he goes big again with a specialized bra for MAXIMUM exposure of Russell’s large bozooms!

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Hell’s Angels cost more money than any other movie made during that time. Going big baby! Mars in Sag!

Mars is energy!  It is motivation and stress.  The stuff that propels life along.  Hughe’s Mars is located in the 7th house of relationships.  It’s a common know fact that Hughes did “go (very) big” in the dating field.

Hughes was infamously entangled with a bevy of beautiful starlets.  The glitz and glamour would satisfy his Venus in Leo as well as his Moon in Leo.  Venus for a man will point to something he is drawn to in a woman.  The Moon points to an emotional hunger that we yearn to satiate. This is also connected to the mother and early life.

It’s interesting to think of all of that OCD doting that his mother did for him was still a form of constant attention.  Hughes was known to be a hypochondriac in childhood to secure the constant attention of his parents, both of whom died within his later teenage years.  Hughes went to court and bought out the rest of the family for the inheritance and became a billionaire.

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This side of him points to his Saturn in Aquarius near the top of the chart.  Ambitious (Saturn) eccentricity (Aquarius).

Ok, so back to the pressure on his Virgoan mind.

Let’s meet the next “bully”, the ever secretly-up-to-something Pluto.  And as a side note, these “bullies” are not inherently bad, they are just motivators.  The aspect of the square suggests that it’s a bit more challenging for Hughes.

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Hughes has Pluto in Gemini (the sign associated thinking) and it sits in his first house of personality right near the Ascendant (amplifying it’s noticeable presence).  His free-wheeling Mars is off gallivanting with women (in the 7th) and putting off a big public image (7th) but when we are looking at just Hughes (1st house), without the public, without the starlets, something else emerges.  Something we can see here in his eyes.

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Pluto is the deep water.  For Hughes the deep water is noticeable right off the bat because it is so close to his Ascendant (the way one “dawns” on others).

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His Pluto is in Gemini, the thinking sign.  The depth that comes forth from Hughes is very mental.

Pluto motivates in a very hidden way.  In Gemini this may take the form of always seeking mental stimulus, and variety of thought.  It lies opposite of the Mars in the 7th house of relationships so we can expect to find a lot of variety there too (and there sure was!).

Pluto is like a rabbit hole.  It’s job is to constantly renew us and purify us through emotional purging.  Hughes’ rabbit hole was so very mental, so full of variety and choices.  For a mind that is suited towards precision and order (Mercury in Virgo) this influx of variety might have been a bit overwhelming.

It would have been nice to see Hughes’ Virgo mind take the Virgoan modest approach to these heavy-weight bullies.  To humbly (Virgo) take things in stride and be aware of his own tendency to over-worry (Virgo pitfall).  We can bring so much peace back to our psyches with a bit of awareness.  This is the department where the horoscope truly shines as a tool.  It serves us to give ourselves a break and be on the lookout for unhealthy habits!

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Like saving our pee in glass bottles.

Until next time!

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https://www.astrologybytess.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Pluto: Your Own Private Underworld

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Picture something innocent.  A child for example, enjoying an ice cream cone, sitting on the front steps to his house in the early evening.  All that is happening is the sounds and sights around him and the wonderful taste of the ice cream.

Then he hears his mother scream so he runs into the house and finds her crying hysterically on the floor holding the telephone.  His older brother was killed overseas.

Now I want you to picture what became of the ice cream, the sounds and sights outside.  30 years later are they still there?  We wouldn’t think twice in agreeing that this event changed this little boy’s life forever.  But what we might not think about quite as readily is HOW.

The planet in focus is Pluto, the lord of the underworld.  In the natal chart he is lord of your own private underworld.  It’s the moment you lost your childlike innocence and descended into a darker place.

 

 

Persephone is a young innocent maiden gathering flowers in a field until the ground opens up and Pluto (aka Hades) abducts her, sending her mother Demeter into unspeakable grief.

What is interesting about Persephone’s character is that she eventually became “pardoned” from hell.  Demeter’s grief was rendering all agriculture dead so Zeus finally caved and insisted that Pluto release her.  But she ends up only being able to live 6 months of the year above the ground.  Why?

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Because while in hell, she ate a few pomegranate seeds.  In other words, she got a “taste” of “hell”.

Of course there can be many ways of interpreting this.  The direction that I like to take it in starts by taking a closer look at a pomegranate.

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This bold and beautiful fruit is so densely packed with seeds, in fact it is ONLY seeds.  The seed IS the fruit.  And what does a seed do?  It regenerates life.

Persephone only lives above ground half of the year to signify the fact that she is no longer only an innocent maiden.  She is also a new and regenerated person because of these seeds from hell (new motivations birthed from the deep subconscious).

In your own private underworld a transformation inevitably takes place.  Something is reborn.  And that reborn something continues to grow.  It is a new motivation.  It is driving you in your newfound desires and directions.  But since it is born from such a deep place you may not be aware of it.

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Citizen Kane is a good example of the power of these hidden motivations.  In the outward world he is a grand success of achievement and wealth.

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But his last words “rosebud” reveal that his deepest motivations (which were tragically unmet) were to get back to a place of emotional wealth that he had as a happy kid with a loving family (even though they had no money).

Back to the example of the little kid eating ice cream.  The traumatic event (aka the ground opening up) is where he meets Pluto.  The seeds that he will eat is the implantation of a new motivation.  This will likely remain unconscious but will still be in the driver seat of many of his future choices.

Pluto is where we look in the birth chart to attempt to shed light on our hidden motivations.

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John Lennon has Pluto in Leo opposed his Moon in Aquarius.

One of the most significant tragedies of his life was the death of his mother, Julia, that occurred when he was 17.  She was hit by a car while crossing the street.  The death of his mother ended up being a powerful common ground he shared with Paul McCartney, who’s mother died when he was 14.

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Innocence lost and a deeper bond.

The car that hit his mother was driven by an off-duty police officer which contributed to Lennon’s distrust in people in authority (Aquarius Moon).  Also the fact that Lennon was not raised by his mother but by her sister Mimi instead further illustrates this Aquarius (themes of abandonment) Moon (mother).

The Leo pomegranate seeds so to speak, eaten from the time Lennon spent in hell continued to grow and motivate him from the depths.  The boys’ friendship turned into the Beatles (Leo 5th house Pluto).

Not to mention that both Pluto and his Moon square his Mercury (thinking processes) in Scorpio (always transforming and evolving).  Lennon could never just be a Beatle, no matter how successful they were.

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To summarize, Pluto is the planet that shows us where we lost our innocence.  This is a repeated process in life so it is not always just one defining event.

Pluto is the underworld where we ate the seeds that started new and hidden motivations within ourselves.  They are likely to be very powerful and it is worthwhile to ponder them.  After all they are  very much in the driver’s seat as we careen down the long and winding road!

Where is your Pluto?

Visit my website if you would like a reading!

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Venus, with love from Italy

I recently was in the mood for a chic flic type of evening so I settled on Eat Pray Love starring Julia Roberts.  While I wasn’t wild about the movie as a whole, it did leave me with one eye-opening lesson.  A Venus lesson as it turns out.  Seek Venus (even through a chic flic!) and ye shall find!

So here is a question:  Do you have enough sweetness in your life?  And here is another: Do you do enough of nothing?

Introducing an amazing Italian phrase..

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Translation:  the sweetness of doing nothing

Maybe this is something that already comes naturally to you and if so, great!  But for other people, myself included, doing nothing usually is accompanied by some sense of stress, like I should be DOING something more productive.  If I am on vacation I might let myself “do nothing” but in daily life?  Not without that subliminal stress.

Venus is here to say:  there’s a new kind of sherif in town!

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And he looks like this!

The next thing I know is I am getting SO much more out of my down time.  What used to feel like procrastination now feels like Italian savviness.

Venus in the natal chart can give us clues into personalized ways in which we prefer to “do nothing.”

Not everyone wants to just lay on a hammock.  Some people might to read (Venus in Gemini?) or play sports (Venus in Aries?) or watch old movies (Venus in Cancer?).

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Jane Fonda’s highly enviable motivation might really be more like leisure to her with Venus in fiery and sporty Sagittarius.

I have Venus in Virgo, which might tend toward healthy-minded routines and analytical studying.  I also have Mars in Virgo almost conjunct my Venus.  I realize that I am often trying to relax by reading and contemplating a book, but all too soon my Mars tries to turn the time into something productive.  And the next thing I know I feel like I am not studying/ cleaning/ doing enough.

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My Venus wants this..

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But my Mars turns it into this!

Sabotage!  What is nice is that if I let my Venus do it’s thing, like read and highlight a book for fun, my Mars becomes gently coaxed.  The next thing I know is that I am feeling very naturally motivated without force.  “I think I will start that writing piece!” instead of “I should really be writing”.

What sign is your Venus in?  How does it relate to your Mars?  When was the last time you enjoyed IL DOLCE FAR NIENTE? 

Visit my website if you would like a reading!

https://www.happyastropondering.com/

The North Star, Mount Meru and Mary Magdalene: Your Navel and the Navel of the World

Have  you ever been told to follow your North Star?  It is such a comfort to think that there could be one.  One that directs your internal compass when you have lost your way.  It’s interesting to note that the placement of the north star within the zodiac is at 0 degrees Cancer (plus or minus 2 degrees) which is the sign of the Moon.

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The Moon in the natal chart represents a comfort as well as a calling that pulls you forth in life.  Sounds a lot like the notion of the North Star.

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Polaris sits in the center of a sky that moves, much like a true sense of home (the Moon) stays still in a world that bustles.

We all know that compasses point North due to a magnetic pull created by the Earth’s magnetic field.

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Polaris has often been referred to the lodestar, which means a star that guides ships.  A lodestone is a magnetic rock.

Can we look to our Moons in our natal charts to better understand our individual lodestars?  And what in us is moving toward this lodestar?

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The lodestone (a naturally magnetized iron ore) composes the needle of this compass so it will always point north.  Iron nails are attracted to the magnet.

Could it be the iron in our blood that knows true north?  Is the thing that makes our blood red the same thing that keeps us on track?

If we are now talking about iron and the color red then clearly we are in another astrological terrain- Mars.

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Iron oxide makes Mars the red planet

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Iron again (in the form of hemoglobin) makes our blood red

But I don’t want to get away from the Moon and the North Pole either.  So here is a figure who seems to embody all of these themes.

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Mary Magdalene

Mary comes from the word mar, as in maritime or marine.  Magdalene bears a strong similarity to the word magnet.  So here we have a mysterious notion of a magnetic sea.  Or similarly, a Mars-like (magnetic) Moon (the sea, the tides).

Meru (11)

This is a map of the Arctic as prepared in 1569 by Gerardus Mercator, a Belgian cartographer and explorer.  At the center of the map is a mountain, said to be positioned at the North Pole.  This mountain is know as Mount Meru, the magnetic mountain.

Mount Meru is know to be the “center of the universe” in both Buddhist and Hindu cosmologies.  It is comparable to Mount Olympus of Greek mythology in that it was the home to the Gods.

The mountain is said to be surrounded by the “indrawing seas” as depicted above by the four rivers and this supposedly creates a whirlpool effect.

It’s hard not to notice the similarity of the image of a whirlpool and that of the symbol for Cancer, the zodiac sign associated with the Moon.

Above are artistic celebrations of Mt Meru.  Borobudur (left) is a Buddhist temple in Indonesia.  The other two pictures depict a Maha Meru, a Hindu symbol that is a 3D projection of a Sri Yantra (a mystical diagram involving nine interlocking triangles).

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Magdalene’s “alabaster jar” that is nearly always pictured with her bears a striking similarity to the Mt Meru symbols.

Mount Meru is said to be the navel of the world.

It’s interesting to think of what our navels used to do for us.

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It was the center which received the “indrawing sea” of our mother’s blood (saline, sea-like)

These days we don’t give too much thought to our belly buttons.

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I mean, this is great, but how else does it serve us?

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How about the fact that it is placed in front of the enteric nervous system, otherwise known as our second brain.  This brain is less associated with rational and logical thinking and more associated with intuition.  Very north star-like!

In closing, next time you get a gut feeling, consider that it might be your infinitely mysterious magnetic inner Mount Meru/Magdalene calling!

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Inner Alchemy and the Wim Hof Method

The planets are alive and well in your body.  They move up the spine starting with Saturn and ending with the Moon.

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This is further discussed in the previous post but here again is our our friendly chakra map

Today we are going to go a little further with this, starting with the role of the endocrine system.

The endocrine system is made up of glands that produce and secrete hormones which go on to regulate the activity of our cells and organs.  These hormones are chemical substances that travel through our blood.

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The fish are the hormones that swim through the the blood (the sea) once released by their particular gland.

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Imagine these fish as the adrenaline (Mars) released from the adrenal glands that are going to supply us with the energy we need to confront that rude person on the street.

The major take home point is that feelings such as anger, relaxation, thrill, bonding and whatever else have a very real CHEMICAL component.

We can all feel our Mars when we tap into our adrenaline.  We can all feel our mysterious Moon when we dream  (the pineal gland).

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Here are the major endocrine glands of the body

Certain glands have a clear affinity with the planets as they go up the body while others may have to be seriously pondered.  I encourage you if your interested to find these associations by studying the functions of the glands matched the with functions of the planets.  In the future as I study this further I’ll probably write another post on it.

But for today I need to move on to talking about the single most inspiring person I have ever come across on the world wide web!

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This is Wim Hof!  Aka the “Iceman” who is famous for breaking 26 world records in extreme sports, namely the ability to withstand extreme temperatures and altitudes.

Wim claims his abilities have to do with learning how to CONTROL his autonomic nervous system, which taps into the endocrine system and influences the immune system.  He does this mainly from breath work and cold water exposure.  But what’s even more amazing is that he says ANYONE CAN LEARN HOW TO DO IT..

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Hof calls the cold his “warm friend” because exposure to it actually trains the body to adapt and secure inner warmth by creating brown adipose tissue which is a natural insulator.  Many other health benefits are involved including balancing hormones, reducing inflammation and creating endorphins.

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In a controlled study, Hof was injected with an e-coli endotoxin that causes fever, vomiting and other flu-like symptoms in the vast majority of people.  He demonstrated control over his immune system and was not affected.  When the researchers were ready to deem him an anomaly he promised he would be back in a couple weeks with 12 of his students that he trained.  All of theses students were unaffected by the toxin compared to the other 12 non-trained participants who came down with fever, chills, the works.

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Wim claims that his teacher is “hard nature” and that the cold is “merciless but righteous”.

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He explains that our addiction to being warm keeps us separated from this merciless but righteous teacher, and therefore we are vulnerable to these elements instead of adaptive.

The main method he uses is breath work.  Essentially a controlled way of deep breathing for deep-tissue oxygenation which raises the pH level of the body.

What’s interesting about the breath is that it is the only function we have that is BOTH automatic and voluntary.  That is, it operates under the autonomic nervous system as well as the somatic nervous system (voluntary movement).  What Wim Hof has learned to do is use this breath to influence the autonomic nervous system (ANS) via the hypothalamus.

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The hypothalamus gland is located where Mercury lives in the body.  It links the nervous system to the endocrine system via the pituitary gland.  The hypothalamus also controls TEMPERATURE REGULATION.

The alchemists viewed Mercury as the most essential component in turning base metals into gold.  Hof himself says “we have to learn how to become our own alchemists” thereby taking CONTROL over our own systems which give us true security and lasting “health, strength and happiness”.

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The lion (our inner power) is controlled by the subconscious (the woman adorned with the wild flowers).  The symbol above her head stands for “dominion”.   If we can influence the autonomic nervous system, can we not influence the subconscious mind to better control our vitality?

Think about your new subconscious relationship to the cold if you learned to not be as afraid of it, by CONTROLLING your reaction to it.

The concept of CONTROL brings us astrologically to Saturn, found in the base of our bodies.  At the top of our bodies we find the Moon, aka “mother”, “matter”, “nature”, “mother nature”.

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Again the tarot gives us a good look at how the mother can be menacing.  We growl and seek to protect ourselves from her (as the lobster’s exoskeleton shows).

And we are always trying to control mother nature by using our thermostats or air conditioning, or making our lives too COMFORTABLE all the time.

Hof teaches us that we have come a far way from balance by CONTROLLING NATURE too much.  Sure we all need shelter but we have become too good at protecting ourselves from nature and thus have become SEPARATED.

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kicked out of Eden!

The Saturn (control) must be turned inward in order to become steadily reacquainted with nature.  Through the breath and cold exposure, we can CONTROL our physiology to better live in nature instead of the opposite which leave us VULNERABLE (another Moon word) to nature.

We are uniting the opposites here.  The “below” of Saturn seeks to reestablish balance with the “above” of the Moon.

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The other opposites to be united in the body would then be..

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Jupiter (EXPANDING) and Mercury (BREATH).  Jupiter is located in the gut and supplies us with intuitive understanding.  Mercury is located in the brain where we can focus.

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Mars (ADRENALINE) and Venus (BALANCE).   Healthy stress brings us back into balance.  And remember- this is Wim’s extreme sport- we can all go about this at our own rates.  For example I like to end my hot shower with one minute of cold- not even ice cold, and I will build from there.  I feel great after!

After we unite Mars and Venus (solar plexus and throat chakra) we have the alchemical GOLD in the middle, our heart, which is associated with the Sun, and our true vitality.

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Ahhhhh… welcome home.

Until next time- happy breathing!

The Planets in your Body

Today we learn where the planets live inside of us.  The seven heavenly bodies as perceived by the ancients in the night sky (before the discovery of the outer planets i.e Uranus, Neptune and Pluto) correspond to seven centers in the human body commonly known as chakras.

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Ok so before you go getting suspicious about the decided order of these planets in the body-

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-consider just a few very interesting facts.

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Each of these planets corresponds to a specific metal in the practice of alchemy.  Notice that the above list is the exact reverse order of the planets as pictured in the body.

The first metal, lead (corresponding to Saturn) is the LEAST conductive of electricity.

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relax Larry I’m getting to the point!

The next metal tin (for Jupiter) is a little MORE conductive, followed by iron (Mars) even a little MORE…

In fact the metals are in the exact order of how electrically conductive they are ending with silver (the Moon) which is the MOST conductive of them all.

We are talking about electricity, we are talking about energy, and how it moves through the body.

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It’s the same thing that the caduceus is talking about

And here is another fact to make us feel comfortable with the placement of the planets in the body:  common phrases we use every day.

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In Casablanca when Bogart’s character says “I stick my neck out for nobody” he is referring to never letting himself be vulnerable (Venus) and not being willing to help anyone else (Venus), a character trait that goes a full 180 by the time we arrive at the dramatic end.  Venus’s energy center is in the neck, a very vulnerable part of the body.  It is where are voice is, which can do so much for others.

Opposite of this is Mars, which lives in our solar plexus.

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we talk about “core strength”, something Bruce Lee believed in.  Mars is located in our solar plexus.

How about Jupiter, the planet of faith, located in our gut?

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and often we do have to “go with our gut”

How about the Sun in the place of the heart?

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does this image “warm your heart?”

How about Mercury, the trickster, in the space of the brain and the visual cortex?

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“optical illusions” make us perceive things not as they are (this image is not really moving)

The Moon is at the top of the head corresponding to “mind”.  The latin word for mind is “mentis” hence our word “mental” but also the less often considered connection to “menses” which ties us straight to the Moon with her 28 day cycle.

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that gives us something “to reflect on”…

And then we have Saturn, at our base.

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Saturn with it’s heaviness reminds us how good it is to be “grounded” and “anchored”

In the next post we will get further into this by examining the value in uniting these centers from top to bottom, as well as discussing how the endocrine system is involved.

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don’t need no credit card to ride this train!