Month: April 2016 (page 1 of 3)

Numerous

Aries 29°

(For last year’s meditation on the Sabian Symbol for this degree:  click here)

Beyond our individual work as humanistic astrologers and even the more generally specific Sun sign astrology, we are gathered here together understand and benefit from what we call Natural Cosmic astrology, that is to say what the Sun in each sign means for us during the 12 months of the year, each cycle of the Moon, which is where the word month—moonth—comes from, one moonth, corresponding to the Suns journey through each of the 12 signs and their natural houses of the zodiac. Funny and beautifully cosmic that our two luminaries, the Sun and Moon, seem to illustrate the same cosmic reality based on that most divine of numbers 12. It’s so much a no-brainer that we don’t even think about the fact that our own journey around the Sun takes twelve cycles of our moon; perhaps 12 is the key, the formula for life itself. Maybe other planets orbiting other stars have life too if that simple mathematically equation is in place. It just might be that simple. The zodiac is lousy with simple realizations like that which we take for granted. And, like the golden mean, the Zodiac with it’s 12 iterations, seems applicable to all aspects of existence. Not just the twelve months in a year, but the twelve hours on a clock, an individual hour made up of sixty minutes, a derivative of twelve, sixty seconds in a minute, not a mathematical system of 10, but a cosmic system of 12. The zodiac’s twelve signs and houses can apply to the individual span of a life, each house ruling a spate of 7 years, suggesting we should all live to an approximate age of 94, give or take; whilst it also expresses the span of all of existence, expressed in myth and biblical legend and through comparative religion, the world over. Let’s look at it through a biblical lens: Aries, cardinal-fire is the big bang, Genesis, creation; Taurus fixed-earth is the garden, Eden; Gemini mutable-air, is conscious, duality as characterizes the Fall, Cancer, cardinal-water is the Flood to wash it all away; Leo, fixed-fire, is the book of Kings and the Age of Miracles; Virgo, mutable-earth, is the human conscience, humility, Chronicles and Job; Libra, cardinal-air, the poetic Psalms; Scorpio, the meaningful Proverbs; Sagittarius, the philosophical Ecclesiastes, Capricorn, Prophets, Aquarius, the New Testament leading to Revelation of eternal life of damnation, the opposite-facing fish of Pisces with its new golden age of Peace, thirteen being the number of new order. There are only 12 thrones in Olympus just as there were 12 Titan thrones before that; and when Dionysus, the new-order god shows up at Olympus, one of the gods, Hestia, relinquishes her seat, and go sits and tends the hearth fire in the center, like the Sun through the twelve houses. Likewise, in the book of Revelation, the “Woman”, clothed by the Sun, with the Moon at her feet, has twelve stars circling her head. Also in the book of Revelation, the wall of the City has twelve foundations (one for each apostle).

There are twelve apostles; and even the original roundtable of Arthurian legend, that of his father Uther Pendragon, had twelve seats, with an additional left blank for Judas. There had to be twelve apostles, too, as Matthias replaced Judas, one of the original twelve..There are twelve tribes of Israel. Twelve sons of Jacob. Twelve stations of the cross. Twelve days of Christmas, ending with the feast of Epiphany, the new-order adoration by the Magi, the first to “recognize” Jesus as the new messiah. Twelve is a higher vibration of three, the trinity, taken to the four corners of the earth; and it numerologically reduces to 3 (1+2).

To The Garden

joseph-campbell_bill_moyersAries 28°

(For last year’s meditation on the Sabian Symbol for this degree:  click here)

As we enter the sign of Taurus:
Stella and I are, for the most part humanistic astrologers, and there are about 80 documentable forms of astrology. We practice, we have a private practice whereby clients come to see us. That is our day job. And, as humanistic astrologers we treat the whole person, pointing out their patterns, their pitfalls and their superpowers as outlined by their natal charts. And we look at other charts to. Each individual’s chart is unique, and the way the planets in the various signs and houses operate and interact with each other is unique. Even identical twins with nearly the same chart will express vast difference based on the nuances and the polarizations they embody with each signature in their charts. The Sun is just one planet, we just all know in what sign the Sun lies in our charts, because it’s our Sun sign, determined by time of year. But we all have all the planets somewhere in our charts which are made up of the entire wheel of the Zodiac. We all have all the signs and astrological signs and houses in us. We are all made up of these twelve slices like a pie. People are pies.

But let’s get back to just our Sun signs for a second. When we write our books on astrology, Sextrology being our major work to date, we are dealing with Sun sign astrology which, though general, allowed for far more specificity than had ever been explored or recorded on the subject. For starters, Stella and I had always maintained that men and women of the same sign were actually different signs or sub signs—that they draw on different archetypes. This was something we bonded over when we first met. We both had astrologers and metaphysicians in our families, so when we met at nineteen, yes we met at nineteen, astrology was something we shared and it became first an ongoing conversation than a shared profession. And so we set about looking deeper into these gender signs, male and female, twenty-four instead of twelve, and that became the main thrust of Sextrology, sex as in gender, first and foremost, sexuality being a close and important second. And of course the archetypes further break down according to gay and straight and bi and trans, and the Zodiac, that pictograph of images inextricably linked to the profound richness and multiplicity of myth, led the way. The more we meditated on that mandala, the more it revealed and it continues to do so, and shall, we imagine, long after we’re gone, by others who would take up that baton.

Carl Jung of course was big into archetype and astrology and we are of course fascinated by the esoteric, not so much the occult, per se, that’s probably more the domain of other colleagues of ours. There is a school of astrology called Esoteric Astrology, one of those 80 brands, and it makes its way into our work. Whereas humanistic astrology treats the person here and now, in time and space; esoteric astrology treats the soul, on its journey, through many lifetimes; reincarnation being more accepted a phenomena than not on this planet. Even Joseph Campbell, the great scholar of myth and comparative religion who always reminded me of Snagglepuss, he had plans to tackle the subject of astrology, next, and then unfortunately, he died. Surely he would have legitimized the subject in a way others haven’t been able to do. We try of course. Okay so back to Sun sign astrology: The Sun placement in our charts really is of prime importance. So, although Sun sign astrology is general in the sense that a twelfth of the population, or thereabouts is born under your sign, it doesn’t take away from the fact that the Sun placement in your chart is most concerned with identity and, we say, the hero you’re becoming. Campbell’s famous book was called Hero With A Thousand Faces; well we know from astrology that there are at least twenty four main ones; and actually as man faces as there are or ever have been people alive in the history of life. But that’s a bit heady. The point our own Sun sign determines our primary archetype, the main cosmic energy that we embody. What is an archetype? It is most often an personification of an energy. That’s what the classic gods and goddesses, of which there are thousands, and all the saints and devis and angels and devils in all the world’s religions and spiritual systems really are. Personifications of energy. And guess what so are we. So are we. We are living-breathing representations of the universal cosmic energy, channeled through the Kaleidoscope lens of our own solar system, from our geo-centric, that is to say Earth-centric perspective right down to the country, the city, the town, the hospital, the bed, or back of the taxi, in which we were born. We are the end result of the stars projects down onto the planet in a spark of life. Not to mention the fact that we are physically made up of the exact same stuff as are those infinite stars. We literally are made of star-stuff. We are star dust. And we are golden. And, today, especially, we are going to get back to the garden—that Edenic metaphorical landscape which the sign of Taurus expresses.

Copyright 2016 Wheel Atelier Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Right This Way

landscape-1446218909-hbz-sean-penn-madonna-indexAries 27°

(For last year’s meditation on the Sabian Symbol for this degree:  click here)

I woke up to this very vivid dream that I couldn’t much figure out. Stella and I were outside some fancy club late night. It felt like being in Portland Square in London and also uptown around Studio 54. It was like we were waiting to hail a cab but were in no rush. It was a warm night with a perfect breeze. We kept hearing voices of people behind us exiting the club. Stella asked, “is that Tony’s voice?” And I said “no”, dreamembering that “Tony Randall’s dead.” To which she replied “he is?” “Yes.”

Then suddenly near the curb where we were standing poured a couple, post club, arranging their clothes, he was refitting his white sports jacket to his frame. They were both very tanned; and I realized it was Sean Penn with a small round faced “date” who had thin blond hair piled on top and minimal make up and very down to earth looking like Kaley Cuoco. Stella sort of stage whispered to me who she was and how she came to be with Sean Penn, but apparently too loudly; because the date confronted us. “Yeah that’s right….that’s who I am and that’s how we met” confirming anything that Stella would have heard in the gossip columns or what not was true.

We apologized profusely and assured the twosome that we weren’t in for that sort of thing; that we weren’t mongers and didn’t care and we apologized for commenting on them too loudly. They immediately disarmed and the date connected with Stella, now apologizing to her for overreacting; at the same time Sean was now shaking my hand, which he would do periodically through out the dream, each time trying to get the grip more precise and make it more heart-felt it seemed. Anyway we were soon the best of friends and decided to go back into the club which was super snazzy and of the supper variety I now realized and we were ushered through to an outside space with tables and metal patio furniture and we sat at a table meant for about eight people, which was fine, because folks, other famous or at least fame-ish people kept popping by and plopping themselves down. Sean and I were locked in conversation as was Stella and the date who said she didn’t much feel like drinking but she wanted to smoke dope. Cue dream reality: Suddenly I’m like I have this bag of the best green and she grabs it and fills herself a bowl and smokes it as Sean grabs some weed to and is rolling a joint in what seems like nori, you know, for making sushi.

He explains that he lives up north with a nod. And I’m like where? The Hudson Valley. “Nah,” he replies. So I’m like…Woodstock? And he’s like “Nah.” And he makes a more precise movement of his head in what would be a diagonal across the Hudson River and I guess, “Where? Pompton Lakes?” and he says yes near there. So he passes me the nori joing which is as thick as a Cuban cigar and suddenly a waiter, a very professional crisply uniformed Asian waiter—all the staff are wearing dark green trousers with white shirts and sort of striped dark green, black and white vests and black bowties—and I’m thinking I have to hide the joint under the table while the waiter puts a huge bucket filled with two or three bottles of champagne on the table but sure he smells it but he doesn’t much seem to care; at least he doesn’t care on behalf of the establishment but I get the distinct sense he doesn’t much like the smell himself or the practice of smoking weed in general.

I explain to Sean that I come from that part of New Jersey and he says how much he likes it. And his date politely asks if I mind if she takes more weed because she really loves it and wants to fill another huge bowl which she does with the weed pouring over the top of her pipe and Stella, of course (even in dreams) isn’t smoking the pot but I suspect I should open the champagne, not just for her, but for those of us who are surely on the brink of having very dry mouths. And I want to say to Sean that I know Robin Wright (I don’t really, I’ve only sort of met her) which I do in the dreamreality, but I decide I better not drop her name just in case it triggers some emotional reaction because I am on tinderhooks knowing he’s got quite the temper. But right now he seems to be my best buddy and he’s kicking back with his black shirt open exposing his very bronzed smooth chest and I think he either blends the bronzer really well because there is no glitch between his face and his neck and he’s a bit glistening with sweat but still has on his white sportscoat. While across the table the date looks very comfortable and happy and as if the temperature is just perfect for her though she’s wearing a sort of think silk jumpsuit with some kind of jungle pattern, batik or bamboo or zebra printed but in a pale giraffe color scheme, and I don’t realize (until now) that this might be significant.

I’m awash with the feeling that I’m enjoying one of those rare moments in life where relating with a fellow, a decidedly straight, guy doesn’t feel like a lot of posturing and posing and heterosexual-male performance art of clipped speech and sideways relating out into space with zero eye contact. It instead feels—and I am aware how rare a feeling in the dream—like the easy kinds of male-to-male bonds guys enjoy nearly totally more readily as a boy or young man before the trappings of the world set in and separate us only to reunite us in approved settings such as golf courses and at dinner parties where we slip away to some billiards room. I feel at home with this guy. At home with him as I did with my dearest, and some dearly departed, friends I knew from childhood into my twenties, the ones who knew me like brothers or cousins would, and who would laugh at my comments or actions with a loving eye roll that would say “Oh man, that is so you,” preempting the end of a story with an expression that says “Oh man, I know where this is going.

And I’m happily aware that the date and Stella are likewise bonding and laughing and exchanging knowing expressions of soul-sisterhood and the dream goes on and on like that and i can feel the metal chair against my back and ass and have to keep shifting because it’s hurting my lower spine and I can hear the scrapes the chairs are making on the slate patio from all the tables and it’s a dark night with no moon, a new-moon night so we are relying on what are outdoor chandeliers—are they hanging from trees—and I’m so blissed out and so comfortable and so relaxed and so at ease and so pampered and still young and I’m not stoned or drunk but I’m a little bit of both, so everything is heightened, Sean’s orange tan against black shirt and white jacket, the black wrought orion mesh table with the dark green padded leather ice bucket with bottle green bottles and the waiters in their dark green and black and white. Green, black and white and crystal light from dull gold chandeliers and it’s London, New York and I have a beautiful wife and I’m looking and feeling my best and I have a new best cousin friend who is famous but I’m unaffected by that as the standout quality of the burgeoning bond is our seamless like-mindedness and I feel for the first time in a long time or ever that I’m not floating or waiting or hoping or expecting or biding or negotiating or debating or hedging or trying or watching myself in any way shape or form. I am. I have. And the night is going to last forever. It already has.

I awoke from this dream, for the day. And was happy. My whole body self was suffused with a blissful feeling of elan and acceptance. I was still (and still am) wrapped in the dark emerald green of the world which, I neglected to say, was appointed with lush greenery—trees and shrubs and ferns and bushes shaping and dotting the private patio—and also perfumed with various notes of wisteria and bearded iris and eucalyptus and other fragrant flowers, not to mention the primo weed; and it dawned on me, increasingly throughout the day, that this private gardened emerald city-club, lush and heady, luxe and overflowing with finest champagne, was a Taurus landscape wherein no self-consciousness could reside. That I had entered into my own version or vision of Eden which apparently includes a negligent chic form of formal seating and service. I scratched my head. So my ideal best friend is Sean Penn? And now I realize that Sean Penn reminds me of my first cousin Gary, some six years my senior, whom I never knew very well; but he has/had that same blotching irish, orange, bronze, loose leathering neck and upper chest as Sean Penn and, moreover, a surpassingly tough-guy persona—both my Irish mother and her sister married Italians and my uncle Gus (Cosmo) was not only my godfather he was, by all accounts, a godfather. He spoke, as his kids tended to, and certainly Gary did, with what we used to call a “dees, does and dem-y” accent. If you don’t know what that is too bad, I don’t feel like working that hard.

I could mine this dream forever; and I probabably will in my own time, but I’ll stop wasting yours here with my realizations. The only one you need really take in is the Taurus landscape of ease and acceptance with no second-guessing of any sort. I did ask Stella what she thought of the dream as we made coffee this morning; before she could answer I said, “you know, isn’t it ironic: because back in the eighties and nineties Madonna would factor into my dreams a lot in a similar manner where we were fast friends, no questions asked, seamlessly connected; and I always too those dreams a signal of ensuing or desired or some form of success, fame and acceptance on some world stage.” To which Stella replied, in a gossipy, on the q-t tone that, well, didn’t I know that supposedly Sean and Madonna are back together, that they’ve been seen together, and are probably dating. And I thought how weird. I mean, maybe the blond in the dream was some sort of reborn and decidedly rejuvenated Madonna who has finally “got it” and no longer needs all the flash to feel good about herself because she got what she wanted, what all the desperate need for attention was actually a subsitute for, the love of Sean Penn. That might be true. And despite the fact that, in life, the two of them are probably totally bonkers and are perfect for slash will end up killing each other, the Sean of my dream and his confident and friendly and unapologetic date were just the kind of good-time Sal and Sally that suited that Taurus environment. But then again, she was wearing something jungle print and Madonna, like Sean, with his big bad tawny-orange skin, is a Leo. And real-life Sean and Madge, should they be reunited, would spend a good decade being the King and Queen of this crazy global jungle in which we live; and like dream Sean, real Sean would surely prefer to hang out and buddy with me in the private garden patio of our favorite exclusive London, New York supper club than be barraged by paparazzi a string of whose lights, like those draped through the trees of my emerald dream, he would spend that decade, undoubtedly, punching out.

Copyright 2016 Wheel Atelier Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Same As It Ever Was

imagesAries 26°

(For last year’s meditation on the Sabian Symbol for this degree:  click here)

Some days you wake up and feel like getting back to basics. It’s a feeling that befits the sign of Aries I believe. Yes the world has changed, and not only for the better; and when you’re 21 and it’s the 1980s and having $2K in the bank feels like more than enough to live on, buy clothes, eat out and party like 1999 feels a long way away, ones being, starting with ones physical body feels very much at ease. I carried a hard agnès b. briefcase, bought a straw hat in Bologna, wrote in a travel diary, social smoked Stuveysant Bleus and didn’t expect, nor want, the world to change much from the F. Scott Fitzgerald vision I had for it. Computers were ugly, beige, with blippy green lighted letters on a darker green screen. And then came the permutations. The epidemic. The oversized neon t-shirts. The pleas to Be Happy. Some pretense of be New York Fashion. The windows on 42nd Street turned into galleries for a brief moment before Disneyfication. The closings. The cupcakes. The gaggles of SATC foursomes. Hotels. Smartphones. Worship culture. Comparison equaling spiritual death for all but those who had spent a lifetime already amassing worship for copying and pasting and grafting and cloning. Thinking ahead to the next wave to ride: Transportation. Hypocrisy—bemoaning mainstream culture and its refusal to accept you at the same time. Wanting everything you blame others for having. The pooh-poohing of people who don’t dress like Sean Young in Blade Runner. The sinister need for clicks. The inability to sit and talk anymore over dinner. The sobering up; the slipping into alcoholism. The throwing under the bus. The pleading for more. Knowing when enough is enough. Waking up, grateful, you don’t have too much. That all eyes aren’t on you. That authenticity, autonomy, anonymity is still possible. Choosing to go back to live under the radar. To reread the Upanishads, Vedas, Bible, Gita, Yogananda, Shakti Gawain. Needing nobody to know—anything—about what you’re doing. Taking a permanent break. Forgiving those who trespassed as you eat GF only most of the time. The cooking, the cleaning, the carrying, the chopping. The shopping for the t-shirts and underwear you really need. The bicycle, no watch, phones off, riding into the sunrise.

Copyright 2016 Wheel Atelier Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Compare and Contrast (Part Two)

the-empress_hera3Aries 25°

(For last year’s meditation on the Sabian Symbol for this degree:  click here)

Maybe you’ve some experiences with the Taurus male and thought, though I am a take charge individual, I do expect a lover to get on top sometime. But it really does go with the whole pretty-boy Taurus scenario. They are total nature boys. Pretty boys. Not the rugged macho men or bratty bad boys we saw in the sign of Aries, no. They are very much the Adonis, and certainly the Narcissis-ists, personifying the archetype of those flower gods who, myth would have it met their fates because they were so damned passive. And just think of the Taurus men born under this flower-god archetype. Rudolph Valentino, was widely adored; Robert Pattison, is pretty passive; and George Clooney, total narcissist; Henry Cavill, he’s prettier than most girls; David Beckham, his voice is higher than most girls; Channing Tatum, “look at me, look at me”; Daniel Day Lewis, he wears pretty earrings; Jamie Dornan, oh well ok, no argument there; Enrique Inglesias, “I’m Mrs. Inglesias”; Peter Frampton, classic, nearly cartoon nature boy; Pierce Brosnan, elegant, James Mason, swellegant, Tyrone Power, all pretty boys, ever single one. All born under the passive nature boy archetype. And no wonder: The archetype of Adonis was such the fleur that he turned Venus, Aphrodite herself, into the aggressor and that never happens. I pissed off her boyfriend Ares, to no end. Well, yes an end—he killed Adonis.

And what about the female Taurus who draws on the archetype of the nymphs. Well the weird thing is, Taurus ruling the ages of 7-14, that many young girl stars, Hollywood nymphets, have been born under the sign of Taurus, making their mark on the masses early in life, not always between the ages of 7-14, but sometimes, and sometimes even earlier: Shirley Temple, Kristen Dunst, Valerie Bertinelli, Sandra Dee, Ann-Margret, Janet Jackson, Amber Tamblyn, Lena Dunham, Sophia Copolla, Audrey Hepburn, Cher, Barbara Streisand, Lily Cole, Adele, Yvonne Craig, Kelly Clarkson, Tracey Gold, Tina Yothers, Danielle Fishl, Eve Plumb, who is one of those people whose names fit their archetypes. I’ll explain:

The most famous of all the myth’s nymphs is probably Io whom king of the gods, Zeus, turned into a snow-white heifer to hide when he was caught messing around with her by his wife , the “cow-eyed” Hera, queen of the gods (to whom Io was a priestess no less!) who, being no dummy, was like oh, is she a gift for me, thanks I’ll take her, and then, when Io escaped, Hera sent a stingy gadfly after her that chased her ass all the way to Asia Minor across her namesake Ionian sea. In fairy tale this story comes down to us as Snow White who was similarly persecuted by the scary beautiful queen. Even that scene where she turns into a crone to give her a poison apple, that is lifted directly from mythological stories of Hera who likewise disguised herself and offered up her “magic” apples which grew in Hiera or Eire or Ireland, that emerald green isle, the color of the sign of Taurus. Fun facts. The movie is basically a retelling of the same myth where Eve is trying to assume the role, on stage and in life, of the queen of drama, Margo Channing. Ann Baxter, of course, is that insidious Taurus sycophant. And really, what are all these stories about? Io is the maiden form of cow-eyed Hera; just as Eve is Margo Channing, who probably did the same exact thing to get where she is just as, at the end of the film, Eve is now cast in the role of Queen, finding a new nymphet, Barbara Bates, is coming to steal her fire. Hera is trying to teach her younger self Io a lesson. Snow White’s Queen is trying to do likewise. Bette Davis just wants to find her key light and avoid wearing a bra. She’s an Aries (in life) after all. These older women have learned the hard way that playing the innocent nymphet will only lead to some kind of personal fall. That’s why she is named Eve. The biblical Eve is Io as well, living in her garden in a state of ignorant bliss until some snake in the grass puts the bite on her.

Copyright 2016 Wheel Atelier Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Compare And Contrast (Part One)

setAries 24°

(For last year’s meditation on the Sabian Symbol for this degree:  click here)

To kill a few birds with the same stone, and because there are only so many writing hours in a day, I must now start speaking to the transition from Aries to Taurus and get myself all sorts of Taurus juicy for the next Zodiac Club on April 24.

By way of contrast: Aries, cardinal-fire big bang, creation, ruled by planet Mars, symbolizing the male principle, names for the Roman war god Mars (Greek: Ares). Cardinal fire is the first cosmic energy, pure masculine force. Cardinal means initatory, all intention, incentive, impetus, drive; and fire is spirit. The masculine cardinal-fire energy is objective and directive and aggressive, befitting the spear-toting war god, and his spear toting sister the war goddess Athena, the male and female archetypes of the model-A Aries. In the biblical line, too, god creates man first, the prototypical Adam who, before the uber femme Eve came on the scene, had a first wife: Lilith, who was demonized by Judeo-Christian tradition for being as directive and objective and agressive as Adam—they were both tops.

The cardinal fire of Aries speaks to the initiatory spark of life, that big bang of all creation or any banging, big or otherwise, that results in that spark of life, ejaculation, the seed, being that spark of life, spewing from the burning spear of Mars that is found between every man’s legs; and women’s too, the clitoris being the female equivalent of that spear. And long after we blamed Lilith for not wanting to be submissive or saddled with offspring and for being in it for her own pleasure, we castrate women, clitorally, to deny them that pleasure—castration for man denies them the ability to procreate, castration for women denies them the ability to get off. Mars rules the male sex drive in both sexes, that is to say the animus in the female. Orgasm, ejaculation is all cardinal fire, the sparking of life. There’s more to cardinal-fire than that but sex is the best metaphor and makes for a spicy segue.

So that was Aries, but now we’ve entered the sign of Taurus, the second sign, and second sex, which exists in stark contrast to the first sign as its ultimate counterpoint.

Ruled by Venus, the feminine principle in the zodiac, fixed-earth, the Garden. We have moved from Aries bing-bang creation to the Garden of Eden, fixed-earth, bliss, dreamtime, the eternal bucolic and pastoral outside of Time, the original age of ignorance, no shame. The classical nymphs and flower gods who inhabit this landscape are the archetypes of the sign of Taurus.

Just as temptation is the shadow side of the innocence of the metaphorical landscape of Eden—all that innocence always leads up to the possibility of corruption—so too are all the myths of nymphs and flower gods hinged on that same brand of enticement. As the opposite energy of Mars ruled Aries directive outward objective cardinal-fire, Venus ruled Taurus energy is inviting, alluring. Think of what a flower does, it invites with it’s unseen scent, just as the female scent of any animal does, via pheromones. As, just as that cardinal firebrand of Aries, as the symbol of planet Mars suggests, signifies the red-hot poker of an erect penis or clitoris, so too does the so fixed-earth energy of Taurus, a fertile patch of earthly delights, symbolize the lush patch of soft and fertile pillowing ground that is the vagina and, by extension the sensitive bollocks of the male.

Did you ever wonder why it is that the premier feminine sign of the Zodiac is symbolized by a bull? Well first of all, it might easily be a cow, the bovine creature of either sex being a symbol of fertility, whereas the rutting ram of Aries, with its antlers, a display of masculine prowess, symbolizes virility. Bullock is the word for a castrated bull or steer, which is oddly close to the word bollock, a synonym for testicles which are a symbol of male fertility and, like a delicate flower, the most sensitive and vulnerable part of the male anatomy. Betty White, a Capricorn and thus born under the archetype of the Grand Mother, our own living fairy godmother and mother goose has a funny quote: “Why do people say ‘grow some balls’, she asks. Balls are weak and sensitive. If you want to be tough grow a vagina. Those things can take a pounding.”

There was a famous acting teacher in New York called Bill Esper and use to make his students, both men and women, breathe and speak and act from their vaginas. Now, just as Mars/Aries rules the masculine sex drive in both men and women, the animus, that is, in women; so too does Venus/Taurus rule the feminine sex drive in women and men, that is the anima in men. Again in mythology, the war god Ares/Mars will kill and fuck anything that moves; his sister counterpart Athena, the war goddess, who incidentally despises her brother, will not be fucked by anybody. Likewise, Adam and Lilith can’t stay together because Lilith will not submit—they are both tops. Well, when we get to Taurus mythology both the nature gods and goddesses, the nymphs, like Io, who took cow form, and the male flower gods—Hyacinth, Narcissus, Adonis—being the most famous among them, they are all, male or female like catch me catch me.

And just as Aries men and women are pretty much like Adam and Lilith, Ares and Athena, they want to be on top. Taurus men and women, well, I think the opposite can be said for the most part—they want to lay back and watch just how much you want them. Even the most heterosexual Taurus man will prefer to lazily kick back and be used for the stud he is, seeing what kind of a frenzy you can work yourself into, literally, over him. His penchant for wearing women’s panties aside—oh yeah that’s real too. It has nothing to do with sexuality or gender; it’s simply a matter of astrologically being born under this physical sign ruled by Venus. The straightest Taurus man will be drawn to lingerie. It’s not just the cray-cray Taurus types Dennis Rodman—it’s a turn on for most men of the sign. We can’t explain it, it’s simply one of those things.

Anyway, just as Aries people of either sex are objectifying and often in the extreme, Taurus boys and girls want to be the object of attention adoration and then some. They want to be pursued, lusted after, prized and, and worshiped. They don’t want to do the pursuing or satisfy their lust so much as see others go wild with excitement for them. Aries cardinal-fire is lust, planet Mars ruling the libido that impetus to get it on. Taurus fixed-earth is invitation and certain temptation, the law of attraction in passive action. Aries will come on strong and make it clear they may want nothing more than to fuck you. Taurus will put it out there, dangle themselves and send those pheremonic signals to love me love .

Copyright 2016 Wheel Atelier Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Waste Not Want Not (Mad Libs)

Aries 23°

(For last year’s meditation on the Sabian Symbol for this degree:  click here)

We were meant to do a workshop for young people in the coming weeks and I created a sort of astrological mad libs. You might find it interesting:

How To Know Yourself Better Through Some Simple Astrology

The Zodiac takes circular form, like a pie divided into twelve slices—the twelve astrological signs and “houses” or areas—slices—of life

If you consult an astrologer, s/he will create your individual birth chart, based on your birth date, time and place—this comprises the entire wheel of the Zodiac into which the planets fall in a specific pattern, reflective of the exact locations of the planets at the moment you were born, from the perspective of where on Earth you were born. But we’re not getting that specific here today.

There are some simple astrological basics that apply to everyone, which can be helpful to explore. One such way we can employ the Zodiac as a tool for self-discovery is to consider the twelve signs’ mottos. Each sign has its own motto that relates to its correspondent “house” or area of life.

The twelve mottos are: 1. I Am, 2. I Have, 3. I Think, 4. I Feel, 5. I Will, 6. I Serve, 7/ I Balance, 8. I Desire, 9. I Perceive, 10. I Use, 11. I Know, 12. I Believe.

We have devised a simple questionaire with instructions on how to interview yourself and take stock of yourself from various points of view as a means of gaining increased self-knowledge.

I AM. Your natural outlook, image and definition of self. Finish the sentence three different ways using nouns. Example: I am a (natural born) leader : I am (a natural born) _____________________. I am (a natural born) _____________________.I am (a natural born) _____________________.

I HAVE. Your best inherent attributes, values, talents and assets. Finish the sentence three different ways using nouns. Examples: I have patience; I have a strong moral compass. I have ___________________. I have ___________________. I have ____________________.

I THINK. The ways your brain works. Finish the sentence three different ways using adverbs. Examples: I think positively; I think fast. I think ____________________. I think ___________________. I think ____________________.

I FEEL. Your most ready, default or accessible emotions. Finish the sentence three different adjectives. Examples: I feel optimistic; I feel cautious. I feel _____________________. I feel ____________________. I feel _____________________.

I WILL. Your passionate intentions—that which you will do (in the future) and that which you are willing to manifest. Use a number of words. Examples: I will write a novel; I will run a marathon. I will join the circus.

I will ______________________________________________. I will ____________________________________________________.
I will ____________________________________________.

I SERVE. Your giving nature. Another sign motto is I Work. To serve and to work. Snap. Examples: I serve authenticity; I serve those less fortunate. I serve my community.

I serve ___________________. I serve __________________. I serve ____________________.

I BALANCE. Contrasting influences within yourself or with others. I balance perfectionism and impatience; I balance autonomy with a need for validation. I balance fear and faith.
I balance _________________. I balance ________________. I balance ___________________.

I DESIRE. What do you truly, even secretly or perhaps subconsciously, want out of life. Examples: I desire greatness; I desire freedom. I desire romance.  I desire _________________. I desire ________________. I desire ___________________.

I PERCEIVE. (I See and I Understand) Where are you most perceptive or have most foresight. Examples: I perceive the potential in others; I perceive opportunities. I perceive possible pitfalls.

I perceive _________________. I perceive ________________. I perceive _________________.

I USE. This is about status and influence. How do you use, not waste, what you’ve gained. Examples: I use free time wisely; I use connections to help others. I use money to invest in my future.

I perceive _________________. I perceive ________________. I perceive _________________.

I KNOW. What are your logical convictions? Of what are you convinced? Examples: I know racism/sexism is wrong; I know world peace is possible. I know there must extraterrestrial life .
I know ___________________. I know __________________. I know ___________________.

I BELIEVE. What are your beliefs for which they may never be any physical proof. Examples: I believe in angels; I believe in real magic. I believe in reincarnation.  I believe _________________. I believe ________________. I believe _________________.

Copyright 2016 Wheel Atelier Inc. All Rights Reserved.

My “Cousin” Vinny

gallo1Aries 22°

(For last year’s meditation on the Sabian Symbol for this degree:  click here)

Today is Vincent Gallo’s birthday. It reminds me of a certain characteristic of, well, certainly men of the sign. The me me me factor. If you were to view the credits of one of Vincent’s movies, or to read the liner notes of one of his records, you will be struck by the fact that his name appears in all categories—produced by, directed by, written by, starring, artwork by, music by, playing all the instruments and so forth. I think of Warren Beatty and James Franco and the Aries men in my life for which everything is an exercise in the eponymous. On Vincent’s website you can hire him as an escort (for $50K) and even buy his sperm (for a million), the merchandise section of the site features a photo holding his crotch. Never mind the fact that he got a real blowjob in his film Brown Bunny from Chloe Sevigny whose, it is a miracle, career somehow managed to survive that. Personally I think Vincent’s site is hysterical and I think it’s yet another work of his art. The irony is there is no irony, but at least there is irony, which someone like, say, James Franco lacks. And in his film he’s the one giving the blowjob.

The selfie was made for Aries people like Franco who makes Ethan Hawke look like a shrinking violet when it comes to the proliferation of other works other than the one Hollywood is paying him to do. Aries men need for you to know that they are more than one dimensional because they feel so one dimensional, a symptom of being born under the one-way energy of objective, directive, centripetal Mars. They aren’t engineered to take much in, despite Franco’s phoney bj scene. They want to put it all out there—me, me, me—and they want you to think they are the best thing since sliced bread. The antlers of their symbol Ram’s head are the expression of specifically male ego. (That same shape can be read as the brow of Athena, the wise strategist, which is more in keeping with Aries female’s character).

I once had a “friend”, an Aries name Ari, I kid you not. He never stopped talking about himself. Ever. He was a painter and a good one. But he no longer paints which pisses me off since I bought paintings from him figuring, well, one thing is for sure: he will never give up because he fancies himself the greatest painter alive. He could talk for hours about one single brush stroke of his. It was maddening. But he grew good weed and it was the early 90s and I didn’t have anything else to do before working my waiter shift at the Bell Caffe down on Spring Street where my uniform often consisted of a micro mini Hawaiin print vintage bathing suit, work boots, and a slicker. We smoked pot there too while waiting on tables in a haze of post Nirvana grunge-punk post everything. Anyway, Ari never fucking shut up. Mainly, he was convinced, that he was a genius; and not just that but also some sort of enlightened being, a chosen one, a saint, a demigod. He was a bore, a word I came to truly understand because at times I thought he was drilling into my skull with a dull, blunt instrument; that’s how self-obsessed he was, but you suffer anything when you want that cushion of kush. I suppose I was just as self-obsessed as he was only you wouldn’t have known it.

Vincent had a similar personality in that he was self-obsessed; but he didn’t talk incessantly and he was also funny and self-deprecating and I believed his whole Johnny Unitas Republican act was real but exaggerated for effect. When he made Buffalo 66, a year when Unitas clashed with Joe Namath which was a watershed moment in Vincent’s young life, he had a screening in a large auditorium which was full. I remember Diane Von Furstenberg standing up and saying, I paraphrase, “Okay, Vincent, we are all here. Are you happy now?” then she sat down. I knew what she meant. She was telegraphing that he was doing what he was doing (making a film) solely for the attention, all eyes on him. And though I really liked that film, I knew she was right; and so did he. She’s a sharp cookie, that one. A cunning Capricorn in love with her privacy who married a monied man who owns practically everything most likely including loafers within which he is very light.

On the day I spent with Vincent interviewing him for the piece I wrote on him for Detour we really did have a lot of fun. He went to thrift shops and tried on the tiniest, tightest clothing. He had a model’s body, super lanky with zero body fat, wide shoulders, like hangers, and the narrowest waist and when he turned sideways he practically disappeared, but for that penis he was so proud of. Even before Chloe suckled it in Brown Bunny, our fashionable little war-god Vincent would tell stories about how a certain designer who won’t remain nameless—Valentino—once remarked, while standing next to him at a urinal, “wow it’s so big.” A version of that scene made it into Buffalo 66. Everything that Vincent talked about in life made it into his movies, songs or paintings. He has singular themes that he considers central to all of us. That’s so Aries. The symbol of his ruler Mars is that circle with an arrow, recalling the male genitalia; and Aries men lead with that in life, mostly unapologetically. Though often, they feel it makes them beastly, brutish or sub human; so they seek to transcend their physical nature which they fail to see as seamlessly connected to their spirituality—that mind body connection most of us strive to attain?—they have it naturally. But they pick at it. They mistake their singularity for that one-dimensionality. So they fancy themselves some kind of superhuman to find increased dimension. They might try to transcend the physical urges they have in spades. They might channel it into eponymous martial arts. They definitely have a thing for the East that goes beyond Marlon Brando’s taste in Asian women. They strive to have a philosophy and are naturally drawn to those that emphasize the Self. Buddha was an Aries. And how in keeping with his sign to show us how divinity is within not without you.

herewww.vincentgallo.com

Copyright 2016 Wheel Atelier Inc. All Rights Reserved.

My Favorite Martian

62a878b32760dd5f4d8128cca8818951Aries 21°

(For last year’s meditation on the Sabian Symbol for this degree:  click here)

So the other day I was rattling off a list of how many “new beginnings” I was actively pursuing in this natural astrological time associated with such doings, Aries, being the start of the astrological new year and the cosmic energy of ignition. I knew I had more up my sleeve while I was listing things, but, as these things go, such thoughts evaporate when you go to record them. The same thing is happening to me now even though I ran to my Blague page to start writing based on said thoughts, dissolving with each tap of my chubby digits. So let’s see, what was I going to add to that list of new-i-ness? Hmmm. Oh come on: Well, I was probably going to mention the fact that we are making plans to relaunch a product line we put on hold. That’s one. I did mention that I wanted to write another book or books. I actually have a roll-out in mind for that. But first I need to find a way to support doing so with a new campaign regarding our existing book or books. I suppose I should be adding new incarnations of ongoing projects into the mix because, it’s April, and I’m cranking up the machinery of my Afterglow festival, and, really, every year constitutes starting from scratch. I mentioned instituting some new habits that characterize my Spartan, warrior-like embodiment of the Mars ruled cardinal-fire of Aries, one that entails being rather vigilant, holding vigil in a sense, which always brings to mind holding a lighted taper, that flame, like a pilot light, signifying the burning adherence to a cause or loved one. I love that the single flame is associated with vigilance, which is a very good thing so long as it doesn’t slip into the hyper- variety.

I suppose, in fact, I’m all shot through with Aries new-i-ness, with still ten days to go before we get into Taurus dew-i-ness. I am writing a new show for the next Zodiac Club (on April 24—be there!) and I have a new book proposal that I want to get into works in that same next ten days. I have new songs to sing and new muscle to build and new thoughts to think and new emotions to feel. One of the best things about new things is that they have a way of curing the old things that nag or unravel you. It’s like with love and sex: The best way to get over someone is to get under them, well, depending on how tired or not you are. Nobody needs reminding an Aries of either sex that they might want to get on top sometime. That advice is usually reserved for the Taurus folk.

So I think today is, or yesterday was, “sibling day”. That’s an anathema for me because I am an only child, now, by choice. I had a sister but I had to, metaphorically speaking, surgically remove her from my life. She was very bad for me; and would continue to be, worse and worse, I suspect, if I were to allow her back. But I wouldn’t worry about that. She won’t try to reach out to me—although her creditors have—because she engineered a whole plan to, first, not let me know of one of parent’s imminent demise so that she could make off with whatever loot there was to grab, and she did; but apparently, like any “lottery winner” who never understood the value of good hard work, she lost it all; or so I’m told. Every once in a while she features in my dreams; and she did last night. And then, when I went on Facebook, I saw that it was “sibling day” from people’s posts. So that was just me being psychic again. But it’s like a recovering alcoholic having a drunk dream—it serves to remind the individual not to go back there. I never will, trust me. Anyway…..I was talking about how doing new things eradicates old thoughts and behavior. And I brought up my sister because I think many of my friendly relationships were modeled on that sibling bond such that it was always a losing battle. I have had a habit of becoming “best friends” with the “worst people” because I spent so much of my early life trying to bond with a withholding, meanspirited sicko that, well, I sought out withholding, mean-spirited sickos. And it’s only recently that I have managed to see these bonds permanently swept from my life. We all have shit. That was mine. So if you know me personally and wonder why I’m no longer friends with this or that ego-maniacal, malignant-narcissistic asshole (or why I ever was) you can chalk it up to my finally realizing I was transferring my dysfunctional sibling bond onto these other ones. And I am now in SLEMMNAA (Sibling-Like Ego-Maniacal Malignant-Narcissist Assholes Anonymous).

So I posted our weekly horoscope, which I do for free because I’m either super giving or a total idiot. If I were Amanda Palmer (a Taurus) I know I’d be leveraging that shit. Oh well, maybe I’ll figure something out. Meanwhile, it focuses on the male Aries and so, in counterpoint to yesterday, I’m in a male-archetype war-god Ares-Mars mindset. In case you couldn’t tell. Fuck you. See, I’m channeling my inner Ares-Mars, a god I never liked as a kid because I was born under the comparatively effete archetype of Apollo with a serious woody for Dionysus, to whom I would recite incantations, in the attic of our rented beach house, wearing “robes” I made by sewing discarded curtains together. So much you don’t know about me. But I’ve since not only made some peace with the war god, I kind of get him. He is the personification of bold force and strength, simple straightforward energies that we thinkers might ignore; but of course we need so brute a godhead, if only to have some beastly nature to transcend; but he’s more than that. The paradox of this energy, akin to the Greeks rarely making the war god victorious in their mythology, was that he was defeatable if not indefatigable. His sister, Athena, never loses; while Ares mainly does, but never mind. He keeps on fighting. And he doesn’t even much take sides. He loves battle so much he keeps switching lines and fighting on either side. He doesn’t care about who’s fighting just the fight itself. We all should have that kind of fight in us. We need the pure energy to harness.

Large, towering and terrifically handsome, we can’t discount the fact the he gave the goddess of love herself the hots. His masculinity was heady for her; and yet she also had a taste for young pretty nature boys like Adonis, a Taurus archetype (being a feminized man) whom Ares swiftly slew. That’s how he rolled. Ares doesn’t mind that Aphrodite is married to the lame Hephaestus, in fact this probably turned him on. The god Ares, and perhaps Aries men, might be more the type than other males to want to cuckold another guy by way of besting him with that sucker’s wife with his own manly beasty ways. (If only Aries men read astrology they could beam in here and tell us if that’s a turn on but don’t hold your breath.)

In Colchis, in a grove sacred to Ares was an oak tree from whence the famed golden fleece hung. I learned this recently. It’s the type of thing that reinforces my theories. I had never before had a connection between the war-god, namesake of Aries planetary ruler, Mars and the golden fleece of the Ram, the symbol of the sign, with it’s associative questing energy. It was from this grove, apparently, that an ancient statue of the god was carried to Laconia an preserved. Yay, mythology. This land of origin was called the Island of Ares or Aria—surely that curmodgeony author of Game of Thrones knew to call the warlike Stark daughter Arya—and, people not being able to escape their archetype, the actress who portrays her, Maisie Williams, is an Aries. Yay, archetype. Needless to say the god’s birth and numerous festivals fall within the month of March, named for him. Women weren’t permitted to approach his temples on festival days. And, in Sparta, he was depicted in chains, the symbolism of which to say: The martial spirit of the god must not be permitted to leave the city-state—his temples were usually on the very outskirt of a city to protect against and scare away invaders.

That didn’t go anywhere maybe. But Aries energy doesn’t have much of an arch, it has a strong beginning then peters out. It is the male principle after all. He he.

Copyright 2016 Wheel Atelier Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Brow Beat

Joan Crawford Strait JacketAries 20°

(For last year’s meditation on the Sabian Symbol for this degree:  click here)

So we had a lovely meal out for our Aries anniversary. We actually visited the spot where the wedding took place and it is now a Mexican restaurant which wasn’t too depressing; funny actually. As always we had some great ideas during our repas and just felt very connected via that third-party in the relationship: the relationship itself. For me it’s always the final feast day of the year, the pivot-ing point into a more Spartan existence for me each year, a trend that typically lasts until next holiday season. My tummy is looking forward to being a little less, shall we say, expansive; and though I’m still being treated since last summer’s car accident—stopping and starting yoga several times this past year—I finally got the go ahead from the physical therapist to “gently” reenter my practice. I will have to fight my perfectionist urges and really go slow lest I wake the beast of the injury from the accident. Physical therapy definitely helps. And, as mentioned Aries is the sign of the physical body, the sort of hardware on which all the other “program” (signs) run on. It’s about the temple.

I’m back on the female archetype of Aries today, that great goddess Athena, whom I’m seriously going to invoke today. There are a few myths involving her that most people don’t know. For one, she designed the flute, made out of a deer bone; but when she played it for the other gods, Aphrodite (Venus) and Hera (Juno)—her rivals during the Judgment of Paris—laughed at her because her cheeks puffed up. Athena stormed out (very Aries woman) and played the flute while gazing into a reflecting pool and saw what those divine broads were on about. So she stopped playing. Vanity and imperfection are rather ironic flaws for so armored and steely a goddess, no? Well not really. One must wonder why it is that Athena is so armored and steely. She is defensive to a fault. And that is most true about Aries women who mainly draw upon her otherwise pretty flawless archetype. I think of Athena almost as personification of the temple, in light of it being a metaphor for the body; whilst that pure Mars (Greek: Ares) energy, personified as the overt, active, aggressive war god, is the brawn and might embodied within that temple.

I mentioned that Ares is the lover of Aphrodite (Mars and Venus) while Athena shares a temple with Aphrodite’s husband Hephaestus (Roman: Vulcan) a funny foursome taken together. I may also have made mention of a myth surrounding Athena and her other half-brother Hephaestus (full brother to Ares) in which the smith god tried to rape her—she wiped his semen from her thigh with a fillet of cloth and cast it to the ground impregnating their great-grandmother Gaia who bore a son with the unfortunate name of Erechtheus. Athena raised the child as her own.


 

This from the Museum of the Goddess of Athena:

 Another aspect of Hephaestus’ relationship to Athena comes to fore here where he is not the consuming God of fire, but the bridegroom, husband, and father of the divine child. In the month of Pyanopsion the festival of Apatura was celebrated, at which the youth of Athens, in phratries (brotherhoods) under the protection of Zeus Phratrios and Athena Phratria, received the initiation which they needed in order to get married. At this festival Hephaestus was particularly celebrated: men, dressed in their most beautiful garments, lit the torch at the fire of the hearth, sang in praise of their God, and sacrificed to him. There is no report in the fragmentary evidence of a torchlight procession, but such can safely be assumed, and for the Corinthian Hellotia a report of such is handed down explicitly. 

 On the last day of the same month began the festival which Hephaestus and Athena shared in common, the Chalkeia. This day was celebrated like a wedding: the artisans presented grain swingles to the Goddess. The secret of this festival was not given away, with the result that more stories were told about it, such as that Athena was given to Hephaestus and placed in a chamber for him, or that he followed her and embraced her. All variations allow the Goddess to leave the embrace a virgin, but they allow a child to originate nine month latter from this same embrace. 

 Only in a later period was the festival of Chalkeia – named such after the material and art of the founders and smiths – celebrated exclusively by artisans as though it were a festival of Hephaestus. Earlier it belonged among the most important festivals of Athena and was called Athenaia. 


 

How I see this archetype manifesting in people born under the sign? Well first I think about Aries women who, for whatever reason (archetype being the only answer) tend to couple with men who are, for lack of a better word, lame. Hephaestus was likewise disabled when he sided with mother Hera against Zeus in an argument and his father hurtled him around the world, several times I believe, breaking his legs upon landing. Hephaestus made the first robots, mechanical men, to help him around; indeed one might say that his industry, of which he is prime godhead, stemmed from his disability—he is the Virgo male archetype for reasons we won’t get into here. Point being, Aries women often partner, if not outright couple or mate, with men who bear an archetypal resemblance to that god. Arguably subconsciously, Aries women don’t wish to be controlled by men, just as Athena didn’t want to marry nor did Lilith play dutiful, submissive wife to Adam. Remember the character Lilith on “Frasier”? So Aries women are archetypically drawn to “consort” males if not outright cuckolds who will play a secondary, even submissive or often subservient role in their lives.

Physically, we see the primal, first-born archetype of the female embodied in Aries women whom I’ve come to refer to as often gorgeous cavewoman because they do portray a certain primitive, prehistoric beauty. They have heavy jaws, sometimes actual underbites, with a jagged twist to their teeth and heavy, heavy eyebrows. Keira Knightly? Emma Watson? Rooney Mara? Kristen Stewart? Diana Ross? Reese Witherspoon? Daisy Ridley? Robin Wright? Lucy Lawless? Lady Gaga? Sarah Jessica Parker? Cynthia Nixon? Michelle Monaghan? Jessica Chastain? Maisie Williams? Jennifer Garner? Claire Danes? Ali MacGraw? Allison Williams? Patricia Arquette? Joan Crawford? Bette Davis? Mariah Carey? Fergie? The list goes on and on and on and on and on and…..

Copyright 2016 Wheel Atelier Inc. All Rights Reserved.

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