May 11th, 2014

Happy Mother’s Day Moms

mom

My mom turns 85 this year. And she is still a raucous, vibrant, glinting gem. It’s interesting to me that when I hear her voice on the phone she sounds like she is in her 40s.

I’m grateful that both of us lived this long to move into a phase of our relationship that is so relaxed and friendly. (I think 30 plus years of counseling, therapy and spiritual practice — on my end –might have helped with that).

Too, it’s peculiar how as I age I seem to be catching up to my mom. Like the time gap is closing, the parent child matrix falling apart.

Gurdjieff once noted that we don’t really understand or can know what it feels like to be truly alone in life until our mother has passed; and more and more I sense the truth in this sentiment. Which fuels more of my gratitude.

To all the moms out there. Thank you!



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May 08th, 2014

“The Danger That Things Can Go Dead”

dinner_andre

“You see, Wally, the trouble with always being active and doing things is that it’s quite possible to do all sorts of things and at the same time be completely dead inside. I mean, you’re doing all these things, but are you doing them because you really feel an impulse to do them, or are you doing them mechanically, as we were saying before? Because I do believe that if you’re just living mechanically, then you have to change your life.”

A classic scene from Louis Malle’s 1981 film, My Dinner With Andre.


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April 21st, 2014

Gurdjieff’s Solar/Lunar Dychotomy

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To simply consider the Full Moon invites Luna directly into your head.

The evolutionary process has burrowed her image deep into our cerebral cortex. We can’t escape her colossal, fat roundness — pushing out the boundaries of our inner vision.

The Sun radiates and sustains whereas the Moon reflects and craves, as Martha Heyneman writes, always the Moon “…is tugging at everything on her side of the surface of the earth. She sucks on the very rocks. As she passes overhead the earth’s crust rises a few inches beneath her and is elsewhere compressed, kneaded as a cat kneads your stomach.”

Astrologically we associate the Moon with Mother, but is that correspondence correct? According to the Russian mystic G.I. Gurdjieff the Earth and the Moon are in a kind of symbiotic relationship with one another. As he explained to P.D. Ouspensky, as recounted in the book In Search of the Miraculous: “The moon is a huge living being feeding upon all that lives and grows on earth. The moon could not not exist without organic life on earth, any more than organic life on earth could exist without the moon.” Gurdjieff describes the Moon as a planet-in-the-making that depends on vital forces generated by life on Earth to continue her process of ‘warming’. The Moon’s evolution. This is a very different understanding from what Western astrology teaches us.

Why do we often feel anxious during the Full Moon? And why is the Full Moon phase considered one of heightened spiritual activity? Consider the phases in life when you’ve changed homes, ended a longterm relationship, lost your job, or experienced the death of a loved one. Psychologists consider those four ‘life events’ as some of the toughest emotional adjustments we ever make. Within the realm of planetary and luminary aspects, the moment of the Full Moon corresponds to a similar set of shocks. Read more



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April 19th, 2014

Why Astrologers Need to Study Wittgenstein

Paul Horwich, in a long NY Times essay wrote:

“The singular achievement of the controversial early 20th century philosopher Ludwig Wittgenstein was to have discerned the true nature of Western philosophy — what is special about its problems, where they come from, how they should and should not be addressed, and what can and cannot be accomplished by grappling with them. The uniquely insightful answers provided to these meta-questions are what give his treatments of specific issues within the subject — concerning language, experience, knowledge, mathematics, art and religion among them — a power of illumination that cannot be found in the work of others.”

Wittgenstein isn’t an easy immersion, but he’s worth your effort because the more you study his philosophy — which was actually, in spots, more akin to mysticism — the more freedom you might gain as an astrologer.

Like the closet mystic Carl Jung, Wittgenstein knew how to couch his propositions to pass the scrutiny of his peers (well, except for his mentor Bertrand Russell who he drove to fury by disregarding traditional formulations of logic.)

And because of this sketchy dance, between chilly logic and the nimbus of mysticism, I find Wittgenstein to be the most satisfying of linguistic rebels. His mix of the effable with the ineffable mirrors in a direct way how human beings toil with making sense (or a muddle) of astrology. Read more



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April 18th, 2014

Square Up! The Grand Cardinal Cross of 2014

grand_cross

“At the moment of supreme tension, there will leap into flight an unswerving arrow, a shaft that is inflexible and free.” – Albert Camus

“A perfect square configuration…represents a tight linking of two kinds of consciousness-building processes…which produce four 90 degree aspects…and leads to a very thorough and exhaustive type of clearing-up activity.” –Dane Rudhyar

*

Plato said the soul is a circle. But how do squares and circles come together? Imagine the difficulty of fitting a square peg into a round hole. Right?

The notion is annoying, but if you talk to most anyone (yourself included) I think you’ll agree that the concept — the blending of a circle and a square — is apt, especially now. Everyone is registering the twists and turns, the psychic torsion of the decade’s most significant astrological happening: The Grand Cardinal Cross of 2014.

But what is it? What does it portend? How long does it ‘last’? And how can you ride this particular tiger?

We’ll get into all of that in this essay.

I’ve loved the anticipatory build-up to the Grand Cardinal Cross (GCC) and how the term has actually entered the Zeitgeist. Everyone is talking about it, even the incredulous.

Essentially, this is an astronomical event that astrologers have claimed for themselves because it is a significant pivot point that resolves in 2015, with the final square between Uranus and Pluto.

Too, the term is elegant and beautiful. It’s also charged with an air of mystery and, for those so inclined, an Armageddon-taint (a misguided notion, but then consider the applicants.) Read more



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