I started reading the most fascinating book last month. Kim Farnell‘s Flirting with the Zodiac. No, it’s not a tome on dating. Farnell’s book is an incredibly detailed, snappily written, thoroughly engaging history of Sun signs. Yes, those kind — the forecasting columns, almanacs, and goofy Zolar books. You know, that section of the newspaper you lunge for every morning.
Who knew? I thought Linda Goodman invented the craze, (not) but as Farnell tells us, Sun sign astrology dates back to Babylonian times. That’s a long trail of advice for the lovelorn!
Today, Sun sign astrology is ubiquitous, all across the universe. Name a magazine, newspaper or tabloid that doesn’t carry a Sun sign column and I’ll accuse you of being illiterate. (The Jehovah’s Witness’ Watchtower doesn’t count).
Because I’m on the verge of launching my own monthly column in a local newspaper, I thought I’d work with tomorrow’s full moon in Aries and transform my usual globalized interpretation into a — “Wait for it!” (as Sister Wendy Beckett would say) — Sun sign extravaganza. And this will be the real deal people. Not one of those mashups (Ms. Bridgid) where you’re instructed to “also read your rising sign if you know it.” The column will be all about your Sun, baby. Yep, white hot! All Sun, all the time. (Could a Leo rising do it any other way?)
Too, the approach I’ll take with my column is going to be quirky. I won’t be setting up solar charts for my analysis (a technique where you put the Sun sign on the ascendant and then decipher the chart’s transits accordingly.) No, my column will be based on the real, live aspects to the Sun and where it resides by sign. Your sign.
To keep things interesting (and staving off tedium) I will couple my astro delineations with a one-card Tarot draw per sign. Oh the joy! Now, I may or may not talk about the card I pull for my analysis (I mean, imagine you’re a Pisces. Do you really want to know that I drew the Nine of Swords for your forecast? Imagine the drama!) You’ll just have to trust me.
I’ve only got so many words I can conjure per Sun sign, and god knows the battle between insights from the Tarot and the stellar inculcation from the ten planets will be daunting. My hope is that I don’t devolve into a sort of Charles Bukowski-like, Tourette’s-flying basket case. I remember my astrological hero, Dennis Elwell, once warned of the mind-numbing condition of Sun sign writing, so I’ve got to take his caveat and prove him wrong; as every devotee must do, eventually, with the master.
I will also be writing the column from my own everyday observations of friends, associates, family members and Walmart shoppers. I’m one of those old-fashioned astrologers that puts real stock in the question “What sign are you?” It’s a blessing and a curse. Especially when I’m dating. (Sorry all of you Aries and Aquarian men out there.)
Sun signs are infuriating. On one hand the notion that all of humanity can be culled into twelve tribes seems ridiculous (just ask Richard Dawkins, he almost had an aneurysm talking about astrology a couple of years ago). But then on the other hand, like the Myers-Briggs or Enneagram typologies, Sun sign astrology really works.
The time of year we’re born corresponds with our soul’s impulse to incarnate. A fish can’t exist up in a cloud bank, nor would an Aries have anything to do with making an appearance during the autumnal phase of the year. We’re each born when we are best suited to be born.
As Gurdjieff taught, the Sun is the ‘all and everything’ for each of us. We are utterly dependent on the Sun’s rays for the nourishment of our bodies and souls. Gurdjieff also explained that we are in a reciprocal relationship with the Sun. We either develop, and ‘work’ on ourselves, to become awakened solar beings, returning our refined essence to the Sun when we die. Or we remain lunar creatures, living life from habit — our comfort zone — projecting mother onto ‘other’, always in an effort to recreate the dual unity womb world that we each recall from our days as neonates and toddlers.
The Sun provides us with the fuel we require to develop soul. The moon incubates the body — of babies and children. Not that there’s anything wrong with that, but reaching adulthood depends on separating from mother (the Moon) and evolving towards the center of the Self, the Sun. The bull’s-eye of our inner (spiritual) mandala. The full light of Being, our birthright of living from True Nature — which is symbolized by our Sun sign.
But I’ll write more about this in the future. Right now I’m burning the oils (or as my mentor Rockie Gardner used to say: “Soaking up atmosphere and astrological insight”) prepping my first column, which will debut tomorrow, in tandem with the glorious full moon in Aries.
Look for it — and rejoice! He has risen.