Month: May 2015 (page 1 of 3)

Boldly Go

How perfect that today’s symbol at 11° Gemini, Newly Opened Lands Offer The Pioneer New Opportunities For Experience is ruled by the eleventh sign of Aquarius in a twelve-fold sequence. Aquarius is all about boldly going where one has yet to go, on any level. For me, this oracle appears at a good time because I am in a cycle where I feel as if I’m doing the insane thing of acting in a familiar manner while expecting different results; and I want very much to break out of that. So the opportunity for new experience can come from approaching even the same old work and challenges, in a different way. And that can happen today or any day. There is no right or wrong way to go about things. Sometimes we can have a new experience even given a regular routine. A new approach actually adds up to being a new, different kind of person in the approach. That is to say our own personal evolution toward what Jung considered individuation can be had via the how not the what. For me, the Libra with great expectations, I can get hung up on results; especially in situations where I’m producing events where audience or RSVPs are a marker of success. In some ways I’m stuck in the shadow side of the energy of the previous sign, the uphill climb and battle. And me with my Aquarian moon; one would think that I could be lovingly detached from my constant, cyclical projects at hand. But it requires some shaking up of the experience and probably more yoga and meditation.

It’s often easier to face the unfamiliar than it is to tackle something routine. That damn law of diminishing returns can hover over the whole experience. Sometimes things just seem written, like when Nancy Kerrigan skated onto the ice that one Winter Olympics, I just knew, and blurted aloud, “she’s got silver written all over her.” First of all what’s wrong with silver? Secondly, perhaps this kind of intution about things can be a boon that can help defeat undo disappointment. One shouldn’t have great expectations and a sinking feeling at the same time, but one or the other. And again it comes down to the individual. The symbol for Aquarius is two waves, but Aquarius, like Gemini and Libra, is an air sign, so they are really brainwaves, those which are up to us to alter and, in so doing, we can change the perspective, the energy, indeed the alchemy of the situation. And we can do so in an instant.

Aquarius is ruled by Uranus, the symbol of which surely having inspired the design of the Starship Enterprise

Aquarius is ruled by Uranus, the symbol of which surely having inspired the design of the Starship Enterprise

So I’m going to do a little experiment—why don’t you join me. Let’s look at what’s on our plate and accept the fact that it is of our choosing. Then, wherever there is any element of dread involved, let’s change that story. Either we remove the components that cause us stress or anxiety, or we decidedly go about them from a completely different angle than we ever have before. What is dread, really, but prethinking? So let us first not prethink. I often tell clients, “If you’re worrying than you’re not working,” and I sometimes must practice what I preach. Because really the task or project at hand isn’t the problem; the real issue is our own particular battle within for a certain joy-in-efficacy; and it is important to give ourselves things in life that we can accomplish without too much struggle that impart said joy. This “blague” for instance. I do it every day and it does provide solace and, yes, happiness; I have no expectations of it, really, which is out of character as I mentioned. It is just a thing I do, a new field of experience into which I can bleed. As I write this I realize that it might be doing something unexpected in the process: Making me hyper aware of activities I undertake that don’t impart the same sense of well-being. Uh-oh.

Well, again, I’m going to scan my plate and determine what I’m dreading. I will either ditch it from my plan or embrace it and try to execute it in a different manner, evolving the how, and paying the what no never mind. We can create the unfamiliar even in the face of the proverbial that breeds contempt. The truth is that reality is all unexpected. Anything can happen at any moment. Perhaps we keep ourselves on hamster wheels or running in ruts out of fear of the unknown, which might well just be some new variables. Well I say bring on these new variables, because daddy needs a new equation. Stat. Oh wait, it’s my responsibility to provide that. So I’m going to get on that. The point is dear readers: Today is about rising to a new occasion. Let’s work this mother out—forgiving the split infinitive, please. Aquarius is all about the future and it starts with this new field of perspective on what already exists before us. So yes, yes, the future is now.

Copyright 2015 Wheel Atelier Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Gravitas

Today is about defying gravity. The Sabian symbol at 10° Gemini is An Airplane Performing A Nose Dive and it is ruled by the sign of Capricorn in a twelve-fold sequence. Makes sense. Capricorn is the Sea Goat, its hind quarters a fish tail. So the fact that it’s associated with the mountain (cardinal-earth) and the steady climb that symbolizes the sign’s consistent, enduring character, speaks volumes on the challenges and determination associated with the sign. Mountain goats themselves defy gravity—have you ever seen them casually crossing some vertical cliff?—but were they to have fish tails, as the Capricorn symbolically does, it would be all the more miraculous. And so it is. The paradox of Capricorn is that they tend not to be very showy people and yet they often accomplish feats others might find so challenging as to be impossible. The Capricorn woman chapter in our book Sextrology, for instance, is titled The Sleeper because they have a way of achieving their successes almost unawares, over Time, old-father Saturn with his sickle, ruling the sign.

It takes superior ability to challenge nature and natural laws. And there is a certain sense of immortality that is gained in getting to the top of Everest or breaking the sound barrier or nose diving and pulling out of the dive at the very last instant, playing chicken with these natural laws, gravity being the one which holds us all together, keeps the world intact and weighted—this is exactly the energy of Saturn, that of containment (in contrast to Jupiter, which rules the previous sign of Sagittarius, which expands). The cautiousness of Capricorn is often chalked up to this “restrictive” Saturn energy but here we see how it is employed, as Capricorn people often do, as a power of protection in taking the most death defying risks. The goat is equipped to be sure footed and therefore can defy gravity more than the rest of us.

Yesterday we fired arrows outward, widening our scope and expanding our minds. Today we go further and actually pierce the fabric of what’s possible. We are challenging matter with our mind which will win over. If gravity is a symbol of fate, we test its boundaries with the force of our will which we’ve supercharged with faith. There are no half measures when playing chicken with the universe. We are all in. We are not keeping a safe distance shooting arrows that may or may not hit a mark; we are on the front lines confronting universal forces, in effect, challenging the gods. This is also expressed in the climbing to a mountain. It is the seat of the gods in all myths, including the classical model of Olympus; Moses (whom God commanded to build his tabernacle out of goat hair) climbs to the summit of Sinai to receive his fabulous new hairdo—becoming like old-man Saturn, wise and spouting rules and regulations, Saturn’s restrictive thou-shalt-nots. The mountain is the place where we receive the gift of divinity, or what we humans often more casually refer to as true greatness.

It is all or nothing. Perhaps the prospect of going up in flames makes a challenging endeavor all that more exciting. And seriously I have never truly thought in terms of Capricorn, literally “goat horn” as in the horn of plenty, the container of proverbial bounty, as being about pushing to the limits. That said I live with a Capricorn who is naturally designed to challenge herself all day every day and in every which way; in fact unless she is achieving beyond the point she achieved yesterday she can be none too happy about it. And what about that fishtail? Well I do believe it can’t be easy to drag up mountains, however it is surely a symbol of the realm of the sea, that of intuition, imagination, and emotion as a gateway to spirituality. It’s just the right kind of baggage to pack for a gravity defying life journey. It is tantamount to gravitas.

Copyright 2015 Wheel Atelier Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Let Loose, Let Fly

To remind any new readers: I started this Cosmic Blague as a means of exploring the cosmic energy of each particular degree of the Zodiac. The most famous, but largely unknown, symbol system for doing this is called the Sabian Symbols and they were “divined randomly” and purposefully not in order by this team of a psychic Elsie Wheeler and an astrologer-metaphysician, Marc Edmund Jones. Unlike the foremost proponent and scholar of the Sabian symbols, astrologer-metaphysician Dane Rudyhar, who has is own system for breaking down the symbols, I am simplay applying a twelve-fold sequence assigning each of the 360 symbols an astrological-sign rulership, starting at the first sign of Aries through the twelfth sign of Pisces, in sequence, 30 times to equal 360. At symbol 69 today, that of 9° Gemini, the ruling sign is Sagittarius, the Archer. So you will join me in astonishment, once again, at the synchronic resonance of this twelve-fold sequence as today’s oracle is A Quiver Filled With Arrows.

All three fire signs in the zodiac are associated with weapons, of sorts. Aries is ruled by Mars, named for the god of war, whose symbol is the shield and spear. Leo, the lion, is the king archetype, whose symbol is, and whose mythology is hinged upon, the divine right to ones sword, as in Arthurian legend. And the wise centaur of Sagittarius is kitted with bow and arrow. Aries is about conquering objectives; Leo brandishes authority; and Sagittarius reaches beyond, even, what this seer of the Zodiac (its motto is I see) can actually see. Ruled by expansive Jupiter, Sagittarius seeks to extend ones scope, to assert beyond existing or known boundaries, to hit specific bullseyes with increasing precision, while other times it might entail firing at will without knowing exactly what the results or achievement might be, shooting things out there, seeing where they stuck later.

Historically the bow and arrow allowed for a wider field of defendable influence; and I think, even just playing the odds, the more ideas and visions and projects and plans a person does throw out there, the more chance there is that one of them will indeed stick and meet with success. Over the last two days we drew inspirational ideas from a well, and we circled a factory as strikers—our beautiful Libran visions of an egalitarian world met resistence in the subverted Scorpio truths of a perhaps secret Plutocracy at work—planet Pluto rules Scorpio. Now here, in Sagittarius, we are thus armed to move through such obstacles in the expression of ideals. We realize we might need to be armed to do so, but that most of what we seek to impress upon the world will likely go over the heads of those gazing at their own navels of hordes of treasure, the 1% Lizard Kings resembling dragons in more ways than one. We have the divine power of our own vision, in any case, to affect our world beyond the reach, even, of those with all the coin in the world. Because the simple fact is, there is more where that came from; and the simple fact is that the great seers of the world, ones who target their visions and prophesies, then let loose and let fly, bringing the world the best children’s books or smart phones or films or cures or vaccines or popcorn or whatever. The point is the list is endless. There is always some great mark to hit and we all “see” flashes of inspiration, but how many of us shoot the Moon to fully act upon some great idea? Never mind how many people would truly share the wealth, financial or otherwise, should they hit some juicy target cum jackpot. What would you do?

Copyright 2015 Wheel Atelier Inc. All Rights Reserved.

All Norma Rae

Aroused Strikers Surround A Factory is the symbol for 8° Gemini which is ruled by the eighth sign of Scorpio in a twelve-fold system. Among the recent images we’ve seen a newspaper calling for revolution and the drilling for oil, so there has been this element of a distressed industrial world. Yesterday, in the Libra-ruled image, we saw a well with rope and bucket positioned under majectic trees, symbolizing an ordered world, or human consciousness wherein high ideals of harmony and equality can be erected. Today, we see those ideals meeting resistence because the haves are not willing to share with the have nots. Ambition is one thing but greed is quite another. There are those who come up with brilliant ideas that benefit all humanity and the world; and there are those whose ambitions are so personally motivated as to be detrimental to others, but there is danger in that. The natives get restless, the workers become aroused, and the revolution we heard about brewing in that newspaper, which may have incited it, is nigh.

Yesterday we had a means of reaching down into a wellspring of understanding and wisdom. Today the strikers are aroused, they have risen up. They have drank from the well of divine equality and now understand themselves to be worthy of more than the scraps they are given. They are taking action based on the ideal that disparity is a social ill and must be stamped out. They are empowered by the oracle of their own, and the collective, consciousness. Where as Libra is about harmony and balance, equal but separate; Scorpio is about merging together—it’s why the sign rules sex—something we see here in the potential to union-ize, separate entities becoming one body. A Scorpio motto is We have, power being potentially what is in shared possession here. The world is out of balance, the few have too much, but the world, indeed the cosmos, is a naturally ordered place that operates under the Law of Divine Compensation. For every action there is a reaction, for every cause, an effect. If Libra is Karma, then Scorpio is Retribution. And in this image we see a very specific Revolt Against Privileges. There should be no privilege in a world where some still have no, even basic, human rights.

Copyright 2015 Wheel Atelier Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Free Free

I love the way today’s oracle, A Well With Bucket And Rope Under The Shade of Majestic Trees makes me feel. Straight away I see Libra’s rule over this symbol in a twelve-fold circular cosmic wheel of the Zodiac rolling it’s way through all 360° of the year. (That means five times a year I don’t have to write my daily Blague.) Libra is the sign of outward appearance, high consciousness, order, balance, asthetics and so much more. The rather abstract god of order himself, Apollo, was a late edition to the pantheon, and is the main, classical male archetype of Libra, itself abstract, the Scales being the only inanimate sign. He is an oracular god, and oracular high-priestess goddesses portray the feminine archetype. Ordered trees and columns are part of the aesthetic and ideological landscape of Libra—Apollo’s most famous myth of he and the nymph Daphne sees her reinanimating into a tree, the laurel, a wreath of which the god wears as a sort of crown; these sprigs being synonymous with honor, another righteous ideological abstraction with its roots in the sign of Libra.

I don’t always succeed but I strive for my Libran archetype; sometimes being ordered, balanced, principled and, even, so highly conscious, isn’t as much fun as the alternative. We can’t all be like Libra Sting and do yoga and meditate between playing madrigals on a lute; sometimes we’ve got to let loose and let Dionysus. That said, there are great benefits to the clarity that is unrivaled in the Libran experience. Apollo is god of light, lest we forget; he slays the Python, a Chotonian image if there ever was one—he rules the world of glaring, righteous, if not angelic light—Libra is the s cardinal-air sign, which translates to light and all that means—enlightenment, theories and prophesy, ideas and ideals, principles, high precepts, goodness and righteousness. So why would Daphne rather be a tree than even date Apollo? It’s likely he’s just too much. I mean talk about having great expectations. Pip from Dickens’ tale of the same name, or even Linus (the name of Apollo’s orator son in mythology) waiting on that pumpkin, Libra has high standards, expectations and demands, as soaring as the straightest Doric column or collonade of trees. And what Libra do you know about whom you can’t with some frequency say: They’re too much?

But what of that well with its rope and bucket. Well, what it says to me is that when you are leading a well-ordered and righeous life you actually have clear access as well to unfathomable depths into which you can drop your mind, coming up with the most amazing realizations and self-fulfilling prophesies for the future. When Apollo first hit the mythological scene, goddesses ruled the realms of art and music as well as prophesy. With him they fell under masculine rule for the first time, and so the oracle at Delphi passed to him from the goddesses Themis and Phoebe, still forever interpreted by high priestesses and sybils and other fabulous white witch figures. Delphi is located at a Spring. The well water symbolizes intuition or divine communication, ere the twain shall meet. It ultimately speaks to the notion that our divinity is within, and we can tap into it.

Sting and Trudie Styler, Apollo and High Priestess, Both Libras

Sting and Trudie Styler, Apollo and High Priestess,
Both Libras

In that way, you see, the well water is the prime mover in the picture. It has created this beautifully ordered landscape. The outer world is beautiful and ordered in its natural transplendence signified by the trees. We can mimic nature and, in building our manmade world, comprised of our physical as well as ideological accomplishments, they can reflect natural order in civilized form. Art can imitate life. With a well of divinity within us, we can enlighten others and likewise be enlightened; in less lofty terms we can manifest high ideals that contribute to an ordered existence: equality, fairness, balance, justice, and just plain old goodness. Glinda is definitely a Libra, she even wears opague fleshy pink, the color associated with the sign. And what’s her message?: The power is within you. It was the whole time.

Yesterday we had to drill through rock to get at what we wanted. Today the well has already been dug. The move from Virgo to Libra ruled experience is always as that from function to design. Without the former you can’t have the latter. The well is filled with rain water, speaking to the relationship between earth (female) and sky (male). The rain is manna pouring down—a gift from the gods, Grace if you will, that, by way of our leading a personally and/or collectively ordered existence, can be properly collected within us as a resource, available to us, when we need it, especially for the purpose of further ordering our world along increasingly conscious, egalitarian, righteous ideals and, indeed, visions.

Copyright 2015 Wheel Atelier Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Burn Your Books!

At 6° Gemini, the Sabian Symbol is Workmen Drilling For Oil and there is everything Virgo about this image, that sign ruling this symbol in a twelve-fold sequence. Not only are workmen associated with the Virgo sixth astrological house, but drilling for oil also fits the sign: The Virgin of Virgo is called Kore, the maiden-form of the Earth Mother Demeter—Kore becomes Persephone once she is “raped” by Pluto and dragged into the underworld, becoming a Chtonian figure. Virgo’s Kore holds that phallic sheaf of grain considering what to do with it. Drill, baby, drill. Kore is the core of the earth, of course, which is a molten furnace—Virgo is the mutable-earth sign—associated with the kiln and the god of the forge, Hephaestus, who was both a potter and a smithy: god of workmen.

Yesterday we discovered the need to go in, to enter a meditative, mystical state as a means of initiating transformative power. Now, we are in. Oil represents a distillation of what has decayed, what was once living organic matter transformed into something valuable, useful and multipurpose. It is a great natural resource, however, as such, it is something to war over, literally and metaphorically. We may be at war with ourselves, as suggested by yesterday’s would-be revolution brewing, and that war would be happening in the human conscience, which is again ruled by Virgo. Mercury, named for the god of the crossroads rules Gemini and Virgo—in the first case the crossroads refers to the intersection of community, the market place, merchants named for Mercury—Gemini is all about wheeling and dealing and communicating and selling, being an air sign, it is hinged on the notion of exchanging goods and information. In Virgo, the crossroads is a moral one. Kore is going to ingest that sheaf and her digestion will mete out the wheat from the chaff. We use digestion metaphorically. We need to chew on things. To digest information. Virgo rules the digestion system whereby we turn dead plants and animals into fuel for our body. This is exactly what the earth is doing in the creation of oil, liquid gold, fuel.

Hephaestus is no mere smith, he is an alchemist. And we say in Sextrology that the name Dr. Faustus derives from Hephaestus. Yes another brilliant thought buried deep in a popular astrology book with Sex in its title. If you know the tale of the good doctor he was in a pact with Beezlebub and, well, I’ll let you explore the fate of herr alchemist. The god Mercury’s staff is called the caduceous and to this day it is the emblem of the medical profession. Healing is changing the alchemy of the body for good. Health and diet are ruled by Virgo’s sixth house, along with all habits and behaviors, examplars of our moral code of conduct. Even the word conduct is a great nod to Mercury, the messenger god. Alchemists worked to turn lead into gold—and it’s the same with our liquid gold, oil, as the Earth herself is a great alchemist, our own real and moral digestive systems mirroring hers. We all have decay and bile, literal and figurative, lodged down deep in us. To be bileous or splenetic are figures of speech. They indicate the lodged decay being stuck and left untransformed, untransmuted, really, into something that fuels us.

You Can't Make This Sh*t Up: Harvard's Dr. Faust is a Virgo, but of course!

You Can’t Make This Sh*t Up: Harvard’s Dr. Faust is a Virgo, but of course!

We have regrets, even good memories that might make us so wistful as to lead to depression. We have all experienced loss. We have disappointments, resentments, maybe even revenge fantasies and active vendettas. Our happiest times, and shiningest moments of the past may be in ruins, the bittersweet feelings of which becoming lodged deep in our viscera—emotional upset manifesting physically—and it can paralyze us and weigh us down. And so we really do need to get the poisonous lead out so to be the most golden boys and girls we can be. If we accept the decay, we get the fuel to not only move forward but to transcend and soar into the stratosphere—the quintessential air sign, Libra, (light) follows that of the deepest, churning earthen sign of Virgo. No manure no magic. And the magic is real, that is to say, unlike Mercury, the trickster and jokester of Gemini’s quicksilver slights of hand, here, in Virgo, we are truly transmuting at an elemental earthly level. This is the Philosopher’s Stone. This is true immortality, the goal of our dear Dr. Faustus; and as someone who has come in contact with an alchemist in my life (I will tell that story here at some point soon), they are wondrously capable, like Compte Saint-Germain, the German alchemist, of transcending the limits of time and space and thus achieving immortality, which may be overrated, depending on what you do with it. Though I dare say that anyone who has achieved it probably has done so because they have transmuted all their leaden badness into golden goodness.

So ask yourself what it is that you have decaying inside you beside your gin-soaked livers. And then see if you can’t imagine turning all your mournings of the past into new moorings in the future, fueled by the full digestion (acceptance) of life on life’s terms and the understanding that, whether or not you achieve immortality, eternity is in every moment and energy can neither be created nor destroyed; and though you will undoubtedly end up as angel food, you will be fueling the cosmos with the new forms you take, suffused with the energy of good intention for the ultimate enlightenment of all.

Copyright 2015 Wheel Atelier Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Not Fade Away

The message of today’s oracle is to reach beyond established forms so says the laugh-a-minute Dane Rudhyar in his interpretation of Gemini 5° A Revolutionary Magazine Asking For Action. Again magazines, especially of a provocative nature, are Gemini-ruled; and we see the duality of the sign expressed in what is and what could be. But what of this revolution—will it be explosive or quiet? For instance, yesterday, I seethed a bit in societal unrest and also in its personal parallel. I suppose there are seeds of an overthrow in what I think and say. Most of what saddens me about society-at-large and close to home, is the fact that it is constructed to benefit the few, in whatever form, and not the many. I think of revolutions, historically, seeking to turn that tide. But bloody revolution rarely does anything but put the pigs in charge of the animal farm, being no better than their predecessors. There is much jealousy in revolution, often; the radicals want what the establishment has, though they will often be loath to admit it. In our personal lives this is known as sour grapes. But I look at this symbol being ruled by Leo in a twelve-fold sequence and that provides a clue to something better.

Leo is the Sun King and Queen of the Zodiac. The David and Bathsheba. The Arthur and Guinivere. David revolts against Goliath, representing the gigantically oppressive status quo but he actually does usher in something better and more noble, as does Arthur, albeit briefly. Breakthroughs or breakdowns: We either outwardly rage against the machine or break with reality under the pressure. But is there not a third option? I dare say there is. If we are really talking about current forms needing to be eradicated it needn’t be outwardly violent or inwardly destructive to escape or override these forms. We can simply go to our happy place—the Camelot in our mind—where we might find peaceful meditation and a noble existence of might for right. The Strength card in the Tarot depicts the Lion and it isn’t a symbol of outward aggression but one of inner strength, bearing, nobility and conviction. Leo rules the heart, yes, but also the chest back and the spine, which is synonomous with having nerve and certain resolve. Aslan appears in reaction to the world being overrun by some Ice Queen for far too long. The modern day symptomatic translation possibly being: too many “ussies” with Tilda Swinton or any other gracious celebrity attempting in his or her own right not to act the part, but remain real; which often results in their being exploited by any Tom, Dick or Harriet looking for the next hit of fame by association. Meanwhile, you’re just you and that should be enough.

Lest we forget, Aslan only attacks once at the final battle between good and evil, which is forever being waged within us, ending it. And only after he has sacrificed himself, laid himself bear, in total non-resistence, Christ-like, to the slings and arrows of the weak and ignorant who know not what they do. For reals. Rudhyar words it thusly: “withdraw[al] inwardly into the mystical state in which one identifies with an unformulatable Reality.” You should probably read that sentence again. We have the option to neither inwardly crumble nor outwardly tumble what icey constructs, devoid of compassion, with which we find ourselves confronted. We can go in and mystically melt them on a peaceful path of least resistance, one not to be confused with passivity. For it is in mystical meditation that we find that constructs are an illusion as is most external so-called reality—paradoxically, the only true reality is the infinite, eternal all which must first be perceived within ourselves. That’s where the magic is—real magic of goodly intention that takes flight and fights all that is not good in this world, illuminating how unstable negative structures are so that they fall apart by their own weight.

Yesterday I said: Look at You. Now I say: Go in. Imagine a world where everyone did so, where we all sought enlightenment, without pointing a finger, or fighting or fretting. It’s not the easiest thing to do. We all fall into negative behavior of lashing out and blaming other people and situations for our problems; just as whole societies wage wars and commit crimes of slaughter and genocide. It will not get you/they anywhere but backward. And, in the process, a great many treasures will be lost, whether they be preserved ruins in a desert or the jewels of your own spiritual progress. Forgiveness is the key to opening a door onto this one true reality—forgiveness of others and, most importantly, forgiveness of self. Christ didn’t die. Aslan didn’t die. Arthur didn’t die. He went into deep meditation, symbolized by the Lake, under the care of the Lady thereof. All to rise again, reconstituted, from the dissolve.

Copyright 2015 Wheel Atelier Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Look At You

What’s with all the Christmas stuff? It is a bit synchronic though as I work on our show for Joe’s Pub on the Summer Solstice, the day the Holly King takes over from the Oak King and pagans do burn mistletoe, at least the pagans in the Celtic tradition. So fine I will deal with this Holly and Mistletoe Reawaken Old Memories Of Christmas symbol for 4° Gemini. We are dealing with ancestral images which, even those dating to pre-Christian, Druidic roots, and such things are ruled by the sign of Cancer and the fourth astrological house in a twelve-fold sequence. Dane Rudhyar says today is about a “return to the source”, and Cancer, as the cardinal water sign, is expressed by a fountain or spring. I am doing my own returning, in the next couple of days, to Cape Cod where I can’t wait to get sand in really uncomfortable places. I have always needed to live near an ocean and have been very fortunate that I have for most of my life. I was speaking with a client recently about recapturing the spirt of ones salad days. The misteltoe and holly in the image are sacred and ancestral, and I think they ask us to examine what those elements are inside of us. How do we get back to our own source of being. It certainly isn’t through nostalgia but something deeper and more primal a connection. These are themes in the show we’re currently writing for sure. In this fish bowl world in which we live, where everybody is watching everybody posture and post visual and textual snippets of their life on social media, directing it to appear a way, trying to manipulate others’ perspective of them, it only makes me crave a simpler, more anonymous time when, if you had to reach me, you had to catch me at home on the phone, now quaintly referred to as “the land line.”

Of course I am saying this in a post that will appear on social media. And I wish more people liked the Facebook page for the Cosmic Blague but I really shouldn’t care. The whole purpose of this endeavor is to return to, first, the source of these daily Sabian symbols but also to whatever wellspring of stories these symbols might trigger. Whether writing or performing or producing or what have you there is that soul-crushing risk that there won’t be an audience. But it can’t stop one from soldiering on if you have some calling to express yourself. I do think our popular culture has torqued the balance to the extreme; such that the same handful of celebrites get all the attention; the sad fact is that this trend is mirrored even in what are meant to be non-commercial forms of art and entertainment; it can all seem like a popularity contest; and if you’re not designed to be so over-the-top needful of attention or worship—as many popular artists and personalities are, even in what’s left of our (or any) subculture, you won’t get it. The same downtown performer who bemoans the loss of a true avant-garde artistic community is the same one who goes on tirades that they don’t get enough press, awards, or attention from the media or gentry at large. You can’t have it both ways. I have always thought that such self-professed “down and out” people who protest too much about the evils of celebrity or wealth would be the first to jump at the opportunity to have them, and they would be just as bad as any kardashian [sic.]—I am of the mind that the lower-case “word” kardashian should be introduced into the English language, meaning: an entitled, vapid greedy, venal no-talent who seeks fame for fame’s sake and is devoid of any spirituality, compassion or sense of proportion; it could also work as an adjective given its -ian suffix.

So perhaps we don’t know what it means exactly to return to a source or our own individual source but I think we know what it isn’t, and what elements of our own personal or collective life represent being as far from a sense of honest purity and spiritual power as can be. So maybe we start there and just keep backing off these things in our own life. For some it could be as simple as cancelling cable, or only using social media for professional or philanthropic purposes, or turning off any means by which we can become polluted or manipulated by such powers seeking to create a certain want in us that manifests in our buying products or into political or religious or other kinds of ideology. We can’t totally isolate that’s not good. But we can stay away from people who play the game of making others feel less than or are constantly and desperately trying to represent their lives to us as somehow better than our own. I think another aspect of returning to the source is finding your true tribe which for me means developing relationships with other nerds who are on a path toward increased self-awareness and expression in manners that lift up others not put them down for ones own self-aggrandizement. And if that means a lot of solo time en route to better communion, well, that’s what books, beach blankets and hammocks are for.

Copyright 2015 Wheel Atelier Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Les Gens d’Ici, Les Gens de la Rue

I have a way too many stories that might be triggered by today’s image, The Garden Of The Tuileries In Paris, having lived in Paris and spending a great many years traveling there, first for fashion shows that saw me walking through the garden daily, and then later for chunks of time when time and money would allow. Just last winter we took an apartment for a few months. Nothing about Paris ever gets tired for me, and I could never bore of the Tuileries, especially, except in encountering a scam artist or gypsy thief. But even that can be culturally interesting if you have your valuables firmly tucked. So I don’t think I will story tell today as I do need to save my energy for the show we’re writing; but, back I will offer some anecdotes.

I worked in Paris in 1985-86 at Passion magazine, which was a super big format magazine and we would have vendeurs who would swing by the offices to pick up big stacks that they would then sell on the streets, in the parks and gardens, in outdoor cafes and even in restaurants, walking through crowded bustling rooms of conversation and scraping cuttlery and tinkling glasses, Passion along with Interview and City and whatever else might be on offer. Before I got a job at the magazine, I too sold them on the streets for a day but I was terribly bad at it so I was grateful I was hired for an actual job in the magazine. I did though hand them out to front row faces in the fashion shows which in those days were in tents in the Tuileries not at the as-yet Carousel du Louvre. I remember handing a copy of Passion to Princess Caroline at one of the shows, saying, “here you might as well have one since you’re in it”—there was some story on her. I was always off-handedly addressing people that most people treated with uber respect and kid gloves. It was the eighties, and I had a socialist ax to grind and authority issues. Some years later, during a book signing for Sextrology at Colette, Princess Caroline would attend and tell Stella and myself, “I’ve heard so much about you.” Really? Okay.

There were several vendeurs of Passion; the most ubiquitous and prolific was called Jean-Yves, I believe (pictured below)  and one of them was this African guy who’d I see here and there around town, in furtive glances, out of the corner of my eye. He was very dark skinned and small and had a shaved head and was usually hidden behind these large magazines he was holding up. One evening Stella and I were out to dinner with a crazy friend of ours called Vivian whose outfit for the evening was a pair of mens striped flannel pajamas. It was the eighties. I can’t remember where we were having dinner, somewhere in the sixth arrondissement; and this fellow through the restaurant and I grabbed his arm and asked in bad French “tu vend Passion”, to which he responded “mais oui”. I explained I worked at the magazine and invited him to join us, which he did. He ordered champagne and I remember thinking that he must do pretty well selling those publications around town. He said his name was Jean-Claude he was from Cameroon and that his father was actually something of a tribal chief. Very interesting. He was highly educated and spoke English and French superbly and after we killed the bottle of bubbly he invited us to a club privé called Le Flashback. Off we went.Street hawker in Paris

The place was dark and filled with poseurs and you had to purchase a bottle of something which would be placed on your table and you would pour and mix your own drinks. For some god awful reason we got a bottle of gin. The place was packed the dance floor filled with couples and, as was not unusual in France, single people dancing with their own reflections in the mirror that squared the entire room. I noticed Jean-Claude was behind Vivian with his arms wrapped around her cupping her now naked breasts as they writhed and I caught him in profile and suddenly realized, what a cotton picking minute, this isn’t the magazine seller after all. As horrible and probably racist as this sounds—I promise you it wasn’t—I had mistaken this small African dandy for the often facially obscured vendeur. But, uh-oh, when I asked Jean-Claude if he sold upper-case Passion he said “oui” thinking I meant the lower case sort.

In any case he wasn’t a gigolo and he and I actually became copains, hanging out smoking hash and drinking at his fancy Saint-Germain-des-Prés apartment. I once invited two French guys I’d met in my neighborhood, Jean-Luc and Phillipe, to hang out there with me. We ended up, as guys do, even ones who basically don’t know each other, wrestling, which in this case consisted of Jean-Luc, Phillipe and I each diving at Jean-Claude in turn whereby he would handily pin us with one move or literally throw us across the room. He was like a tiny Cameroonian super hero it was astounding. And the manner in which he defeated our moves with ease made us laugh hysterically as we exchanged glances of disbelief while, you know, being chucked into a wall. None of this of course has anything to do with the Sabian Symbol today at 3° Gemini which is all about “Formalism” but so what, it’s my Blague and I’ll blab incessantly if I want to. I will add this, that in a twelve-fold sequence, Gemini rules this oracle and given it’s rule of the third astrological house, it is associated with boon companions and all kinds of merchants, especially street vendors of newspapers and magazines. So there.

 

Copyright 2015 Wheel Atelier Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Because You Believe

Santa Claus Furtively Filling Stockings Hanging In Front Of The Fireplace is the oracle for 2° Gemini? Really? The diviners of this symbol were off on this one—or were they?–let us explore. This would be a Taurus-ruled image in a twelve-fold sequence and the keynot is: a rewarded faith in spiritual blessings. The connection I see there is that Taurus (the Garden, Eden) is the sign of innocence, albeit leading to temptation. Even the Taurus myth of Io (and Snow White) and that of Adonis is about the trials and tribulations of passivity and naiveté. We must “be ye like little children” in our pure beliefs that Santa will hang stockings by the chimney with care. In Eden, that was the mindset of Adam and Eve, total, unquestioning belief in the celestial power. We have to have unshakable belief in order for Santa to manifest. He doesn’t without it. I will leave you with this story that I told at Joe’s Pub Winter Solstice Last:

I remember in 6th grade, when we first learn about the Greek gods, right. I was so utterly turned on by the gods. I made myself a tunic out of old curtains I found in the attic and did incantations to Dionysus, wanting divine communion with him or else it was my inner wine-o emerging. But I was sad too because the conceit was that the gods were something people once believed in but they no longer existed. That notion depressed me to no end. But I didn’t give into it. I knew it wasn’t true. The gods weren’t dead. They were very much alive. But this was before I could articulate my reasoning: That the gods are energies personified. And energy can’t be destroyed. That we too are energy personified. Or that Mary is Aphrodite. That Jesus is Eros. And that the connection between the gods and their namesake planets and astrology and psychology and archetype and energy and theatre and temple and spirituality and the stage would ultimately wrap me up like a blanket.

But I remember 6th grade, the last day of school before Christmas vacation, it was snowing, we couldn’t go out for recess. There was no real school work to do—no point starting new lessons. We played fuzz ball. (The class divided in half throwing a softball size pompom like those on the top of our winter caps across the room and if you didn’t catch it you were out. I was typically out pretty quickly.) Then I think we rearranged our desks. And it was a half day. And we were just sitting quietly with our hands folded. It was bittersweet because our teacher Mrs. O’Shea was moving away and wouldn’t be back after vacation. I remember accidentally calling her Mom one day when I raised my hand. That was excruciatingly embarrassing. As if I needed any other reason to stand out like a sore thumb from the rest of the class. But I was always the square peg. Going against the grain. So, 6th grade, waiting for the bell to ring and free us for Christmas week. Hands folded on our desks. Mrs O’Shea with a teasing smile asks the class if we are looking forward to Santa visiting which induced a group groan because 6th graders no longer believe in Santa Claus. So as the class sputtered and moaned and rolled their eyes in a cacophony distilled to a single phrase: There’s no such thing as Santa Claus, I….raised…my…hand…and said: Hold on. I believe in Santa Claus. Loader moans now with threatening jeers. And I don’t recall the exactitude of the Linus Van Pelt solo argument I launched into; but I know it had something to do with the fact that Santa Claus must exist because so many children believed in him down through the centuries and if that many people believed in Santa that he must “exist” on some level, just like the one God whom everyone believed in without seeing and who, I was a bit peeved, replaced my beloved Greek gods whom I loved so completely, just like that one Dick Sargeant replaced that one Dick York as Darrin on Bewitched, my favorite show. I didn’t know Santa Claus was Wenceslas was Saturn was Old Father Time was Father Christmas. Just like I didn’t know that Endora on ‘Bewitched” was Saturn’s wife Rhea Cronus and that Endora meant endure and personified the Capricorn energy of preservation and conservation. I just knew that if every one of those snot-nosed muggles in my sixth grade class, for whom I had a natural contempt, could swallow the fact that their mainly Christian all caucasian father son and holy ghost existed then, by Christ, I could make a strong argument for the existence of Kris Kringle, with a K, like the Kardashians, our modern false gods, all too readily worshipped. And I remember Mrs O’Shea making this face, [sic.] as if to say, sounds reasonable; and 24 sets of other children eyes fixed upon me their gaze melting from bah humbug into a happy gratitude that their childhood belief, so newly vanquished, could be, at least for this moment before the bell was to ring, so magically restored.

Copyright 2015 Wheel Atelier Inc. All Rights Reserved.

 

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