At Capricorn 11° we encounter A Large Group Of Pheasant On A Private Estate, the keynote of which is the refinement and propagation of aristocratic values by means of which man participates in the evolution of life toward ever more per feet forms of existence—not exactly the clearest keynote ever. Apparently what we are looking at here is man’s ability to alter, through biological techniques, species found in the wild and, in effect create new ones. We know how this is true with dog breeding. Just last night I discovered that pugs and bulldogs need be delivered of their litters by Cesarean section, something I didn’t know but feel a bit uneasy about. Need to have black labrador retrievers, as a sign of status, also comes to mind. I have had friends who had peacocks on their rather sprawling grounds surrounding their ancient home in France and I’m sure you can think of your own examples. All domesticated livestock, for instance. I must say I assumed (rightly?) that pheasant wasn’t a species we the people have altered. Still this impetus to change other species, not to mention ourselves, is a core human quality.

Let’s leave off fauna and turn to flora for a moment. The garden has been taken from the wild and domesticated and made to reflect the cultural status of the human person. Et voila, the pheasant finds itself trundling around these manicured grounds. Man can cooperate with nature in creating beauty and elegance in his/her surroundings. In a twelve-fold sequence, this oracle is ruled by the sign of Leo, the major tenet of which is: co-creation with god. The building of ones home and castle, the notion of nobility, if not aristocracy, and the divine right of kings, all fall under Leo’s astrological umbrella. We set ourselves up in contrast to nature, flora and fauna. It is made to serve us, functionally and aesthetically. We create our little bits of heaven here on Earth and the more skill and means we amass, the better we do so. We intend to improve upon what god has made, apparently, not willing to accept the state in which plant and animal exist. We will create our environment and its inhabitants in our own image of beauty and necessity. We will breed out that which we do not fancy or which doesn’t serve us. We are not just god’s co-creators, we are god’s finishing producers, taking the creator’s raw materials and making them into the fastest race horses, the sweetest corn, the cutest poodle and the most effective antibiotics.

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