Weekly Astrology Horoscope: Venus in Gemini—I will, I will, for now.

zodiac-and-starsApril 30 to May 6

The planet of our desires, Venus, has tripped into the sprightly sign of Gemini. I guess after her sojourn in the zodiac sign of earthly delights, Taurus, she needs a little break from all that good food and good lovin’. Here she is witty, urbane and so very interested in the social scene. For an Air or Fire sign, Venus in the placement lights up their social if not their love lives, and a wealth of new contacts, business and romantic can come floating their way. The problem though, is that Gemini likes to keep things light, and not commit to any one thing or person. Ruled by the planet that represents children, Mercury, the soul under Gemini’s influence is rather like a child themselves, playful, but not mindful of the consequences of their actions. If you meet someone and you want to make an emotional connection, it is best to wait until Venus reaches the sign of Cancer, which at her recent whirlwind speed will reach Cancer on May 19. Until then, be friends and be friendly. Venus in Gemini will respond in kind.

Aries—If you can’t be with the one you love, love the one you’re with. Well not really, but that will be your rationalization. What a flirt!

Taurus—This is an excellent time to gather those deep psychological insights into your own behavior. Trouble is, no one wants to listen to them, so what is the point? The point is sometimes you just have to work things out for yourself.

Gemini—Mercury is retrograde, which is bad for you. Venus is in Gemini which is good for you. The phone is ringing. Pick it up. It isn’t the love of your life, but you might have a good time anyway.

Cancer—Slowly but ever so, you are working your way past old habit patterns that are holding you back. You simply must look beyond the past to embrace your future. This is your wake up call, because Venus will soon be in your sign, and what will you do then when the perfect opportunity comes to you?

Leo—No one listening Leo? Then for heavens sake, shut up and do some listening of your own. No one wants to hear your outside voice inside. Plan a vacation. That will take your mind off your bruised ego.

Virgo—Déjà vu, my Virgo friend. Again, old structures seem to melting away like sugar candy in a rainstorm. Don’t cry, Virgo, because you’ve yet to see the prize hidden away in your box of Cracker Jacks. Faith.

Libra—Let’s just say you know other people are full of it. Let’s just say you are pretty well unhappy with all of it. Let’s just say that maybe its time you realize you are getting back what you give. Too harsh? Sorry. Now you try it.

Scorpio—After that dark night of the love life you’ve suffered for the past few months, suddenly not one but two new opportunities emerge. What to choose, whom to choose? Scorpio, just let things happen. Do you have to control EVERYTHING?

Sagittarius—Some days you are a hit and run lover, and these would be those days. So many interesting possibilities cross your path, its hard to choose just one. Typically Sagittarian, you don’t and mayhem ensues. Have you bought a new pair of running shoes lately?

Capricorn—Some good business opportunities cross your desk, which keep you cogitating on future possibilities. At least something in your life is interesting; since your love life is well, lackluster.

Aquarius—Oh good! You get to work harder! Aren’t you pleased? Of course not, and your bosses should wipe that smile off their face as they hand you their work, if they know what’s good for them.

Pisces—You’ll have to be patient with the rest of the humans this week, Pisces as your grand visions mess with their sense of reality. If it weren’t for your magic the world would be a colder, darker place, but now is not the time to remind people of that.

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Astrology and History: Are We Going to Have a Revolution (Again)? Part 1

tiedyed peace sign Pictures, Images and PhotosAre the sixties, the decade of flower power and protests really over? According to Priscilla Costello, speaker at the latest Astrological Society of Connecticut meeting, the same cosmic influences that visited an expanding personal consciousness on a generation have swung around again.

What Priscilla talked about was the cosmic dance of the outer planets, Uranus, Pluto and Saturn, During the late sixties Uranus was conjunct Pluto and Saturn was opposite Uranus. Now in the middle of the first decade of the 21st century we are facing similar influences, with Uranus square Pluto and Saturn opposite Uranus. Pricilla’s observations started me thinking, wondering if we are in for a redux of those turbulent times. What follows is my attempt to match significant historical and astrological events of those and present times.

Saturn, Uranus and Pluto are our archetypes involving broad social issues. Uranus, the archetype of the rebel, wants to upend the apple cart and change the status quo. Looking backward, the sixties was all about changing the status quo. Betty Friedan writes of June 30, 1966 the day of an exact conjunction of Pluto and Uranus:

The government sought to pacify us and convened the Third National Conference of the Commissions on the Status of Women at the Washington Hilton in late June 1966. The omens were not good. That week President Johnson and Lady Bird invited a few of us to tea at the White House. The President said he wanted to appoint talented women, but the problem was “finding these women.” It was a weekend of lip service.
We learned that we weren’t allowed to pass resolutions at the conference. So on its final day, June 30, as dignitaries yammered at the podium, I joined other furious women at the two front lunch tables, passing along notes written on napkins. We were putting together the National Organization for Women under the noses of the people who wanted to put us off. I wrote on one napkin that NOW had “to take the actions needed to bring women into the mainstream of American society, now … in fully equal partnership with men.”

It was no coincidence that Uranus and Pluto were in the sign of Virgo, the virgin, the archetype that is beholden to no man.

But more was churning in the American psyche. The undeclared war in Southeast Asia was a source of resentment for the teenage “baby boomers”.

Well come on all of you big strong men,
Uncle Sam needs your help again,
He got himself in a terrible jam,
Way down yonder in Vietnam,
Put down your books and pick up a gun,
We’re gonna have a whole lotta fun

And its 1,2,3 what are we fighting for?
Don’t ask me I don’t give a damn,
The next stop is Vietnam,
And its 5,6,7 open up the pearly gates,
Well there ain’t no time to wonder why,
WHOOPEE we’re all gonna die . . .

Well come on wall street don’t be slow,
Why man this is war go go go,
There’s plenty good money to be made,
By supplying the army with the tools of the trade,
Just hope and pray that if they drop the bomb
They drop it on the Vietcong.

The children of World War II veterans, this was the first generation of Americans that grew up under the budding materialism of the post war era. After the war, Rosie the Riveter and her generation were shuffled off to brand new suburbs to bear this new Pluto in Leo generation, while the men took the jobs that the women held during the war. The children of the WWII vets were the first generation to experience mass market advertising, television, and an explosion of toys produced specifically for them. Even as they performed “duck and cover” drills in the event of nuclear war, another dark side of American life shadowed them in the form of a skyrocketing divorce rate. Clearly the capitalism and materialism of their parents failed to satisfy the adults in their life or provide a sense of security that these children needed. It was no wonder then that these young people grew up with a cynicism far beyond their years, and many were just not willing to adopt the values that made their parents so very unhappy. The draft was a touchstone; a symbol of the power elite sending off young citizens to a horrific war that seemed to serve no purpose other than to fill the pockets of the Military-Industrial Complex. So when generation hit the college campuses en masse, fueled with an unprecedented amount of government aid in the form of student loans, rather than fulfilling their parent’s desire to get an education they sought the answers to a more meaningful life. Social change seemed to hold the answers. Students protested everything on their campuses on issues ranging on the war to a woman’s place in society.

During the late sixties when Saturn opposed Uranus, it was Saturn, the planet of the status quo, that was in Pisces while Uranus was in Virgo.

Saturn opposing Uranus is all about the breakdown of structures and to average Americans of the time, the student protests were a sure sign that America was going to hell in hand basket, that the “end times” were near for American Society. But as American youth recognized, the status quo needed some very big changes.

On November 8, 1966 at an exact opposition of Saturn and Uranus”

Edward William Brooke, III (born October 26, 1919), is an American politician and was the first African American to be elected by popular vote to the United States Senate when he was elected as a Republican from Massachusetts in 1966, defeating his Democratic opponent, Endicott Peabody, 60.7%–38.7%. He was also the first African American elected to the Senate since the 19th century, and would remain the only person of African heritage sent to the Senate in the 20th century until Democrat Carol Moseley Braun in 1993, and would remain the last Republican Senator from Massachusetts until the 2010 election of Scott Brown.

But not only did this election result demonstrate the breakdown of the status quo, but also paved the way to recognition of the poor economic plight of African Americans. Edward Brooke was appointed by President Johnson to the President’s Commission on Civil Disorders formed to to investigate the causes of the 1967 race riots in the United States and to provide recommendations for the future.

The Commission’s final report, the Report of the National Advisory Commission on Civil Disorders or Kerner Report was released on February 29, 1968 after seven months of investigation. The report became an instant best-seller, and over two million Americans bought copies of the 426-page document. Its finding was that the riots resulted from black frustration at lack of economic opportunity.Reverend Martin Luther King Jr., pronounced the report a “physician’s warning of approaching death, with a prescription for life.”[3]

The report berated federal and state governments for failed housing, education and social-service policies. The report also aimed some of its sharpest criticism at the mainstream media. “The press has too long basked in a white world looking out of it, if at all, with white men’s eyes and white perspective.”

And also:

By his second year in the Senate, Brooke had taken his place as a leading advocate against discrimination in housing and on behalf of affordable housing. With fellow Senate Banking Committee Member, Walter Mondale the Minnesota Democrat, he co-authored the 1968 Fair Housing Act which President Johnson signed into law on April 11, one week after the assassination of Martin Luther King, Jr.. Dissatisfied with the weakened enforcement provisions that emerged from the legislative process, Brooke repeatedly proposed stronger provisions during his Senate career. In 1969, Congress enacted the “Brooke Amendment” to the federal publicly assisted housing program which limited the tenants’ out-of-pocket rent expenditure to 25 percent of his or her income. By the 1990s, the percentage had gradually increased, but the principle of limiting the housing ‘burden’ of very-low income renters survives in statute, as of 2008.

During the late sixties when Saturn opposed Uranus, it was Saturn, the planet of the status quo, that was in Pisces while Uranus was in Virgo. Thus the government response was a typical Piscean one, let’s give our resources to the least fortunate. Lyndon Johnson declared a “War on Poverty” in 1964, with a series of initiatives, many of which survive today, enacted very close to the first Saturn/Uranus exact opposition on April 1, 1965, but it took the civil unrest of the later part of the decade to drive home the point of the need for social change. It was an age of Liberalism that wasn’t seen before and hasn’t been seen since.

Yet this Liberalism came with a price. It was an age of polarizations, children versus parents, whites versus blacks, women versus men. Yet, even as the Saturn/Uranian conjunction weakened, the force of the Uranus/Pluto conjunction continued its grip upon the nation.

In a January 1967 article written for the Chicago Defender, Martin Luther King, Jr. openly expressed support for the antiwar movement on moral grounds. Reverend King expanded on his views in April at the Riverside Church in New York, asserting that the war was draining much-needed resources from domestic programs. He also voiced concern about the percentage of African American casualties in relation to the total population. King’s statements rallied African American activists to the antiwar cause and established a new dimension to the moral objections of the movement.

But widespread opposition within the government did not appear until 1968. Exacerbating the situation was the presidential election of that year, in which Johnson faced a strong challenge from peace candidates Eugene McCarthy, Robert Kennedy, and George McGovern, all Democrats, as well as his eventual successor, Richard M. Nixon. On 25 March Johnson learned that his closest advisors now opposed the war; six days later, he withdrew from the race.

Lyndon Johnson was a proponent of social change, helping to steer programs designed to help the poor and minorities through the corridors of government. However, in the face of opposition to a war he felt was vital to the security of the nation and the world, he could not continue, and thus America lost one champion for social justice on the home front.

In 1968, America lost two more leaders, Martin Luther King and Robert Kennedy, Jr., both voices of social change. It is perhaps no accident that on those two grim days, Pluto made malefic aspects to the planet of communication, Mercury.

In the middle of August 1969, 400,000 young people gathered on Max Yasgur’s farm, in an event that was originally envisioned for 20,000, the Woodstock Music Festival. It was a show of force and solidarity of a generation that showed up on faith because most did not have tickets. They were not turned away. That close to half a million people co-existed for 4 days peacefully with a lack of just about every amenity possible was a demonstration in and of itself that this generation lived its ideals even if the outside world mistakenly believed those ideals were about having a good time.

As this decade slipped into the next at a fever pitch, a shocking event changed the nature of public response. As Uranus and Pluto came to 9 degree separation, about to dissolve their dramatic dance, and Uranus was part of Yod involving the Moon in Aries, and Neptune, National Guard troops shot into a peaceful anti-war demonstration at Kent State University killing 4 students, American citizens exercising their rights to free speech.

Death, previously distant, was now close at hand. New groups-Nobel science laureates, State Department officers, the American Civil Liberties Union-all openly called for withdrawal. Congress began threatening the Nixon administration with challenges to presidential authority. When the New York Times published the first installment of the Pentagon Papers on 13 June 1971, Americans became aware of the true nature of the war. Stories of drug trafficking, political assassinations, and indiscriminate bombings led many to believe that military and intelligence services had lost all accountability. Antiwar sentiment, previously tainted with an air of anti-Americanism, became instead a normal reaction against zealous excess. Dissent dominated America; the antiwar cause had become institutionalized. By January 1973, when Nixon announced the effective end of U.S. involvement, he did so in response to a mandate unequaled in modern times.

.

Even though dissent was now institutionalized, the shots that rang out at Kent State had a chilling effect on public dissent. It was as if the threat of death silenced this generation.

Next Installment: Fast Forward—Saturn/Uranus and Pluto in the New Millenium.

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Weekly Astrology Horoscope: Week of April 25, 2010 to May 1, 2010

zodiac-and-starsAries—With Venus making favorable aspects into your sign this week, get ready, set, go for a solid up tick in your love life. Your step is especially sprightly and you have that spring fever glint in your eye. You don’t blame people for finding you so adorable, do you? But it will be up to you to make the first move. If you don’t, well, opportunity doesn’t knock twice, you know.

Taurus—Social activities dominate this weekend as planetary forces align to make your presence in demand. You seem self-possessed and in control and people seem to want to hear what you want to say. If there was any time for that power lunch with the boss, this is it.

Gemini–If you happen to stumble upon the love of your life, you just might not recognize him or her when you see ‘em. So bedazzled are you by the danger boy or danger girl in your orbit you just might overlook the one you can bring home to mother. Do realize that the opportunity to be with you shouldn’t be wasted on the totally unsuitable.

Cancer–Though you may realize that you have to change past habit patterns you are totally befuddled as to how you should. Your best bet in this case is to get thee to some suitable care provider, be is a psychologist or holistic practitioner and get some solid guidance as to the best way to approach your situation.

LeoSometimes being the strong silent type is a plus. This is one of those times. Why? Your efforts to charm fall flat as you, yes, you, fail to find the right words. Indeed, you are more apt to find the wrong words, which center on “I want”, “You need to do this for me” and variations of the same. Tone it down, please.

Virgo You are feeling romantic and restless at the same time. You want something to happen, NOW. Here is what you must resolve for that to happen. You must shed some of your illusions about what is possible and what is not. Separate the can from the can’t dos. Remember the say “Less is more.”

Libra All lights are green, all systems go. There is no sense in even trying to make a decision, because whatever you do works all well. Don’t waste this energy even trying.

Scorpio Plans or activities are stalled as other people can’t seem to get it together. If there is something you want to accomplish its best that you to work on your own until other people come around to your way of thinking.

Sagittarius Do it, don’t do it. This one or that one. Life is such a drag when you have some many choices to make. The Archer likes to go with flow rather than direct it. The truth be known, Sagittarius has much more important things to do than be responsible for results. Poor baby.

Capricorn You would be wise to be careful about your financial affairs. What seems like a sure fire deal isn’t as solid as it appears. Don’t let someone cajole you in something that your gut tells you is a bad bet.

Aquarius Keep your head down and keep your mouth shut. This is no time for Aquarian displays of bravado or genius. You’ll have your pick of choice situations soon if your only you keep out of the crossfire. Good luck.

Pisces Your to do pile is larger than your done pile and it isn’t getting any smaller. Is this because you just can’t say no? There is no swimming away from this mess, so you better step into your hip waders and start shoveling. And while you are at it practice this saying, “Sorry, I’ve too much on my plate right now.”

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Mercury Rx: Your Concerns For the Next Three Weeks

Mercury Retrograde Pictures, Images and PhotosMercury stopped in its tracks last Sunday at 12 degrees of Taurus, and will move back to 2 degrees of Taurus before he turns direct. This area is activated for the next month, until May 11, when we get think about what we haven’t achieved and figure out what we are going to do about it. Take a look at were Mercury is traversing your chart and what it hits. If you don’t have a copy of your chart, go to www.astro.com, pick “free chart selection” and enter your birth data to get a copy of your chart.

Mercury transiting the first house—This is an image conscious transit, and due to influence of Taurus you are going to think about that diet, haircut or shopping trip that will serve to do improve your view of yourself. Often, under this transit, you’ll make decisions that you live to regret so while hair will grow back, trimming back that credit card bill for the new wardrobe will be a little tougher. Pass.

Mercury transiting the second house—Lucky you. You’ve always had a good sense of values when it comes to money so don’t blow it now. Use that famous Taurus sense of patience to hold back on any schemes that loosens any money from your coin purse. And if the question is whether you should or not, well, that is what you get to ponder for the next month.

Mercury transiting the third house—Mercury in the natural zodiac rules the third house, which has to do with communications, siblings and small monetary transactions, trade schools and organizations and curiously, thieves. Maybe you are waiting to hear from a brother or a sister, or receive that acceptance letter to a school, or if your lover will finally tell you what is bothering him or her. Now is not the time to expect a resolution and you’ll only make yourself crazy if you do.

Mercury transiting the fourth house—If you are looking to buy or sell a house, wait. Nothing will materialize until after May 11th. If you are a seller you might be showing houses, if the house is in escrow, there many be extra demands to seal the deal. If you are buying there will be a reason for the deal to slow to a crawl. Patience. It will all work out.
Oh yes, call your parents. They are waiting to hear from you.

Mercury transiting the fifth house—We are talking about your love life here, which for you takes some time to materialize anyway, but now things are impossibly slow. Maybe the object of your affections is just plain thick headed in getting the message you are interested, or maybe you have some impediment of your own, like your last fling that seems to keep hanging on, before you can move things along. Maybe this is the time to think about what you really want in a relationship. Now THERE’S a topic for introspection.

Mercury in the sixth house—People that you employ will suddenly become unreliable right now. Maybe your babysitter will disappear for a few days and not have a good reason upon her return. Or your gardener flakes out while the starter plants languish waiting to be planted. There is a whole host of scenarios that could play out, so whoever you rely on, have a back-up plan to replace their services on the turn of dime. It will all give you a headache, but its just stress, not something more serious.

Mercury in the Seventh—Partnerships of all forms seem to stall right now, leaving you holding the bag with things that need to be done. If you are planning a wedding, there are all sorts of problems that will sort themselves out after the 11th, so if you can wait before you try to fix things, do yourself a favor. If you partner seems reticent about discussing issues maybe you should let sleeping dogs lie. It’s all terribly frustrating, but maybe the lesson is to learn to have a little faith in the Universe. Be a human being, instead of a human doing.

Mercury in the Eighth House—Issues involving taxes, insurance, the resources of others and goods of the dead hit a brick wall this month. Nothing moves along like it should. If you are waiting for a check it may be delayed. If you are trying to work with others, (like lawyers) on these issues, things move at an impossibly slow pace. It doesn’t do any good to rail against the system. This is usually a signal that there is some important detail that is being missed, so spend your time figuring that out rather than slamming the phone in some poor clerk’s ear.

Mercury in the Ninth House—Scholarly or legal pursuits hit snags. Maybe you put off those papers much too long and they are due NOW. Maybe your carefully prepared thesis can’t get out of the printer’s shop. Or a long planned trip suddenly has a raft of problems crop up. Whatever is going on there, this is a chance to retrace your steps and do things better, so make some lemonade out of those lemons.

Mercury in the Tenth House—You are forced to revisit career issues that you thought you put past you. Maybe career recognition, that promotion or raise, is delayed. Maybe the new job that you though you grabbed suddenly disappears. Suddenly people you thought were your allies aren’t taking your calls. You are on your own. It blows, I know, but patience is a virtue, and with your Taurus energy here, you have a sense that the timing isn’t quite right, so trust that feeling.

Mercury in the Eleventh House—If Mercury transits here, you find yourself stuck in the problems of your friends and associates, and somehow everyone expects you to straighten out their problems. There is no need for you to act like an energizer bunny, or lend out your last time to bail out people that are too lazy to work out their own problems. If you are part of a large organization you may have a sense that something big is about to happen, though not just yet. If you think you may have to jump, make your exit plan now.

Mercury in the Twelfth House—Of all the Mercury transit positions this may be the most disturbing. This is due to the very weird dreams that disturb your sleep and keep you off balance for the rest of the day. You aren’t imagining the effects. These dreams are powerful indicators of the issues you are sorting through right now. Pay attention but don’t be unduly alarmed, because the information you receive from beyond the veil is not exactly literal interpretations of the events that are to come.

For another perspective on Mercury Retrograde check out Tony Vowle’s post.

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Mercury Retrograde: Thinking Over The “Big Problem”

mercuryrxWhat haven’t you accomplished in the past two months? Is there something that is on hold? A career decision, a critical task, a relationship?

Mercury handles many of our everyday activities, reading, writing, banking, buying, and selling. It is how we reason through a problem, and it is how we communicate to other people. In many ways, this planet, the closest to the Sun, is a facilitator in the transactions of life.

Mercury is trickster, as we learned from his myth. As a precocious infant he stole the sacred cattle, the ancient world’s equivalent of gold bullion, of his brother Apollo infuriating him. Apollo was so ticked at his father’s newest offspring that he hauled the swaddling babe up to Olympus to be judged by the King of the Gods. You have to understand Zeus’ history to fully appreciate what happens next. Zeus had a tenuous power sharing arrangement with Neptune and Pluto, his brothers. Well aware that the balance of power could be tipped to upend his position, he either sidestepped the issue or when cornered took the position of the most powerful god or goddess in the argument. Apollo, as the god of prophesies, was fairly sure, that Zeus would favor him in any judgment. But Mercury was a new god, the god of reason and intellect. Instead of insight coming from the soul, Mercury’s appearance signaled that it came from the mind. This was a shift in human consciousness, perhaps even displaying the shift from the bicameral mind of early humans that perceived thought as the voices of the gods to the self-awareness that humans enjoy today.

Zeus was no fool and he knew the birth of this new god signaled a new way in which humans would interact with the gods and each other. Zeus wouldn’t punish this baby god. Instead he smoothed over the disagreement and in the end the two gods exchanged gifts. Mercury gave Apollo the lyre, which he invented on the day of his birth, and Apollo gave him a golden staff, a symbol of communication with divine forces.

Mercury, the planet of our communication skills and our thinking processes now appears to be moving backward in its obit. We are often cautioned during this retrograde period not to start new projects, buy expensive items, start a new job, and sign a contract. We find that during this period that our perceptions about the terms of the agreements we enter in to are subject to change. Why? Because this is time we should be using not to start things, but to mop up the things we didn’t take care of previously.

Mercury is in Venus ruled Taurus, so the areas of life we are concerned with right now are our resources, financial and otherwise. Taurus seeks to procure and protect, though with the retrograde period, this is often gives way to expending resources to conserve what you have. Thus we often find ourselves having to make critical repairs or replacements to appliances and vehicles. We rethink contracts and ask for different terms. If here is something we’ve neglected to do such as pay a parking ticket, suddenly it become a big problem that needs to be resolved. However, during the retrograde period, we get to sit and cogitate on “the big problem” until Mercury moves forward and we can do something.

Tomorrow we’ll talk about what will concern you under this retrograde period.

For another take on Mercury Retrograde check out Julie Demboski’s site.

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Weekly Astrology Forecast: Week of April 16 to April 23

zodiac6Aries—The surge of energy you felt with the recent new moon carries you forward in considering new plans and ideas. With Mercury appearing to be going backward in its orbit you may be forced to retrace your steps and rethink your previous position. Why do you think that its? Well, dear Aries, as usual you have skipped ahead a few pages in the Book of Life and now you have to go back to read what you missed.

Taurus—You have some wonderful plans that no one is going for. This is not the time to start new projects anyway, so it is best to use this time to go over your plans and add the dash of practicality for which Taurus is noted. In the mean time, watch your movement in motion and take things slower rather than faster.

Gemini—Someone hands you a whole lot of work that surprisingly you should accept. Handling this challenge with grace (and without complaint) sets the stage for future opportunities. Make no mistake; higher ups are watching you to see how you react.

Cancer—Your relationships get a little bumpy. OK, a lot bumpy. Somehow you are one that is expected to change. Reach out and envision what you would like to happen instead of holding back and expecting the worse to happen. You might be surprised at the results.

Leo— The planet of communication appears to be going backward in its orbit. It is also making difficult aspects to your Sun. Forgot your snappy answers and your “aw shucks” explanations. No one is buying it right now.

Virgo—Those of you born at the beginning of your Sun sign are enjoying a surge of popularity and happy times with friends. Take care not to push your views on them, because you are feeling especially persuasive. The other have is experiencing a redux of last year’s sturm and drang of talking on other’s responsibilities. If you haven’t sorted out yet that you should let certain things go, then you are getting what you deserve.

Libra— There are all sorts of difficulties in trying to “seal the deal”. The problem is not so much you as other people can’t get their stuff together. Good thing too, because that “really good deal” isn’t so good, after all. Don’t be persuaded otherwise.

Scorpio— People are talking out of both sides of their mouths. Lucky for you, your super sensitive BS detector senses something is up. Be circumspect on the favors you hand out to other people.

Sagittarius—Past actions have a way of coming to bit you in the rear. I can go on and tell you that this a karmic lesson about how to handle responsibility but you wouldn’t listen anyway. Mind you, burying your head in good times isn’t going to get your anyplace, so maybe you should put your nose to grind stone anyway.

Capricorn— Mercury retrograde is cramping your deal making style. People are pushing you to move ahead when you want to think things over. What you should say; “I’ll pass.”

Aquarius—Everyone is talking at you and no one seems to be listening to your point of view. It is like trying to talk in a room full of toddlers. It’s not your style to babysit the children, but this week this is exactly what you are doing. Just don’t let them know that, because they think they are being perfectly reasonable and we wouldn’t want to set off any tantrums, do we?

Pisces—You are wending you way through a difficult process involving groups and organizations. Don’t be surprised if it you that is expected to jump through hoops when it is other people who should. Patience.

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The Astrologer’s Process: Was It A Cat I Saw?

My boss at my day job bounces into my office and wrote a sentence on my white board.

Was it a cat I saw?

“What, “ he said, “is unique about that sentence?”

Mind you, this has nothing to do with work or work product, but knowing him, he had already cracked the code and wanted to see my response. In jest and in my usual cocky Aquarian manner one day I had fatefully announced that I was smarter than him. He has never let me forget it.

I looked at it for maybe thirty seconds.

“It is the same letters forward and back.” In other words it was a palindrome.

“Very good,” he said. “it takes people with a genius level IQ longer than that to figure it out.”

Now I’m no genius. I know exactly where I test out in standard IQ tests. But I am one thing that my boss is not. I am an astrologer.

Beginning astrologers learn the zodiac signs, the planets and aspects by rote. We have a fairly standard set of meanings for all these things. To get to the next level, interpretation, things get a little trickier. Some people never get past the “cookbook” learning phase, and forever are looking up the meaning of each little piece of the puzzle, not able to put it together.

To get to the next stage, synthesis, requires that an astrologer engages their pattern recognition skills.

Humans evolved brains that are pattern-recognition machines, adept at detecting signals that enhance or threaten survival amid a very noisy world. This capability is association learning–associating the causal connections between A and B–as when our ancestors associated the seasons with the migration of game animals. We are skilled enough at it to have survived and passed on the genes for the capacity of association learning.

With an ever-shifting sky above us, astrologers who are adept at extracting and synthesizing meaning from astrology charts have the ability to match patterns from material previously learned. Thus, for example, when one is presented with a natal and a transit chart showing that transiting Uranus is conjunct natal Venus we realize that this transit is similar in meaning with an individual who has this combination in their natal chart. They have a need to do things differently. With a transit with Uranus conjunct their Venus there suddenly is a need to do things, you guessed it differently.

Astrologers do this all the time, and the good ones get it right. So it wasn’t genius that helped me solve the sentence puzzle, it was my training as an astrologer.

“How long did it take you?” I asked him.

“About two minutes,” he said. “But you are smarter than me.”

Photo published under a Creative Commons License as posted on Flickr.

Astrology and Fashion: Saturn in Libra Equals Denim!

denim2Sssh! Few know this, but in my college years I studied Fashion Design. As a budding fashionista I learned about the pendulum of fashion, of how hems lines and skirt styles go up and down, in to out and then all back again in a fairly regular cycle. So it was no surprise to me to see an article proclaiming denim to be fashionable again, after years of being out of the fashion spotlight. Yet as an astrologer I was curious as to why it is now that denim should get the shout out this spring from designers like Ralph Lauren and being promoted by chains like the Gap.

The zodiac sign concerned most with fashion is Venus ruled Libra. And Libra is in Saturn right now. Hint and clue! Could the planet of durability, Saturn, have something to do with denim’s popularity or lack of it? As it turns out, denim enjoys an upsurge of popularity in high fashion circles when Saturn is in Libra, and falls out of favor when Saturn is in other signs. When Saturn was in Libra in the 50’s, denim was the sign of the rebel and after Saturn went into Scorpio, schools started to ban the wearing of jeans on campus. In the sixties and seventies when Saturn swung through Aquarius to Virgo, and jeans were popular with teens, but it wasn’t until the early 80’s, when Saturn was in Libra once again that jeans became high fashion as famous designers started to put out lines of jeans with their names on them.

In the nineties denim fell back to fashion staple, though hardly high fashion, as more versatile polyester and natural fibers such as silk replaced denim on the runways. Sales of jeans struggled despite well-funded ad campaigns and the industry suffered slides in sales. Now however, Saturn is in Libra once again, bringing its fashion darling to the spring runway shows.

Photo published under a Creative Commons License as posted on Flickr

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Weekly Astrology Forecast: April 9 to April 15, 2010

zodiac-and-starsAries—New starts are especially difficult to get off the ground as you keep being drawn back to old responsibilities and obligations. There is a burning need to transform your attitudes in these areas as you are missing new opportunities by keeping your head in the sand.

Taurus—You want to be more than friends, but there seems to more than one obstacle in your way. It’s easy to keep doing what you’ve done before but to make some progress you are going to have to buck up and bite the bullet no matter how uncomfortable that is.

Gemini-Energetic, you cut through tasks like a knife through butter. Just make sure they are the right tasks as you might misunderstand some instructions. Before you have to do a do over double check what it is you are suppose to do.

Cancer—You are content to let other’s take the reigns as you are happily spinning some lovely dreams and don’t want to be bothered with mundane details. Surprise, you are right in the thick of things, so you better keep your eye to the keyhole if you don’t want to be taken off guard.

Leo—Others seem to bent on derailing your plans, even if they do it with a smile. You would do best play a supportive role in the next big thing coming along, keeping your finger in the pie, rather than try to run the show. You’ll find out why later.

Virgo—Other people seem to have an overblown sense of what you can accomplish. As flattering as this is, you really must learn to set some limits. Whether it is the boss that wants that report “right now” or the child that wants 40 cupcakes baked and decorated for the morning you must use your negotiating skills to keep the stress to a minimum.

Libra—You may feel the call of destiny this week as the stars align to point the finger of God right at you. Since these planets are Venus and Jupiter you are likely to lose your head or your heart if you rush in before taking a survey of the territory ahead.

Scorpio—You are feeling pressure to get everything “just right” and to “get it all done”. If I tell you not to sweat the small stuff, you wouldn’t listen anyway, so prioritize a “to do” list from essential to non-essential tasks and work your way down.

Sagittarius—As long as you keep ignoring the nonsense going around you, you should do just fine this week Archer. You are a whiz at blowing off other people’s problems no matter how much they try to stick them on to you.

Capricorn—You can earn some extra money just as long as you don’t listen to the “advice” of financial counselors who only are out for a fast buck. Keep to your usual steady course in matters of the heart as well.

Aquarius—People think you are Superman or Wonder Woman, able to pull a miracle out of the back end of your cape. Since you aren’t feeling all these superpowers yourself, you are feeling mighty stressed out. Feel free to meditate or just close the door to get some time to de-stress.

Pisces—This weekend it is not just April showers that gets dumped on you. As much as you want to hide your head in the sand, it is just better to face the music and get down to business. Keep at it and in a week or so, things will look better for you.

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Astrological Society of Connecticut April Lectures: Priscilla Costello

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Lecture: Thursday, April 15
7 PM
Keeney Center
200 Main Street
Wethersfield

Priscilla Costello
The ‘60s Are Coming
Liberation movements, protests, dramatic social and cultural changes–if you remember the 1960’s, it was a dynamic decade whose influence is still felt and whose energy is reappearing with the Saturn-Uranus opposition and the forming Uranus-Pluto square. What were the seminal events and major themes of that decade? With some reference to Richard Tarnas’ brilliant research in Cosmos and Psyche, what might we expect to reappear now and in the future? As well, we will look at where the previous Saturn/Uranus/Pluto energy fell in your chart and what you might anticipate in the coming years.

Workshop: Saturday, April 17
10:00 AM – 5:00 PM
Priscilla Costello
Aspect Patterns: Geometry of the Soul
As planets glide around the Sun, they move periodically into certain pre-defined geometric relationships to one another. When linked together, the major aspects (conjunction, square, opposition, trine, and sextile) reveal your inner psyche, along with your life challenges and life purpose, as well as potential outer circumstances and events. Multiple aspects can create certain recognized configurations composed of these Ptolemaic aspects. We will cover the major patterns of stellium, grand trine, kite, T-square, and grand square, as well as hint at other possible connections between planetary energies.

About Priscilla Costello

Admired for the clarity, depth, and energy of her presentations, Priscilla Costello is a counseling astrologer, teacher, and writer with a professional astrological practice spanning over 30 years. She has spoken widely throughout the U.S. and Canada, at numerous conferences sponsored by NCGR, the AFA, SOTA, and most recently at UAC in Denver, Colorado. Currently serving on the Advisory Board of NCGR, she was formerly its Director of Chapter Affairs and Development. She has also been instrumental in the organization of Canadian astrology, both locally and nationally. Founder and Director of The New Alexandria, a center for religious, spiritual, and esoteric studies, she is the author of The Weiser Concise Guide to Practical Astrology (2008), a unique introduction to the basics of astrology that links it to psychology, religion, and esoteric wisdom. In a recent review in The Mountain Astrologer (Dec/Jan 2009), Mary Plumb describes it as “a fine introduction to serious astrology and a lovely book for astrologers at all levels of experience to enjoy.”

Available for readings during her stay in Connecticut.
Call Mary Ellen Norton at (860) 632-1916
or the ASC InfoLine: (860) 568-8617 to make an appointment.

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