Thursday, October 17, 2019

Generation and Trust

As generation is to existence, so trust is to discovering what's been overlooked.
From The Timaeus by Plato

I tweaked the translation of Benjamin Jowett.  I sure hope he would not mind.  The phrase keeps repeating in my mind.

Here is how I recall the transliteration:
Otiper pros genesien ousia, touto pros pistin alethia.

Thursday, July 25, 2019

Tripping with a Leo

This post was written Tues and Wed, July 23 & 24.  

I had a fun road trip with an old boyfriend yesterday that completely wore me out. Today I am studying charts as I rest before work tomorrow. 
My old boyfriend is the epitome of Leo, born July 23 at midday. In the years we were together, his tantrums were so theatrical some of my otherwise intelligent friends actually worried that the police should check up on him. I have wonderful memories of our more dramatic fights. No matter how physical we got, I was never afraid of him. He fought fair with plenty of flair. He used to watch lots of WWW (World Wide Wrestling) with colorful characters like Ravishing Rick Rude, he’s played loads of small roles and 1 or 2 leads in local theater, he reads plays the way the rest of us breathe air, and soaks up opera like a hippopotamus bathing in a river.

Not only is my guy a fresh Leo, born at midday during the time of year when the sun had just entered that blazing section of the ecliptic; but that same week he came along, Mercury was backing up to meet Uranus in the well respected middle of Leo. A lot of people only see his bright sun outshining his remarkable wit. Those of us who are closer to him know there are gut level laughs to be had when he is around true friends. If you wonder how Mercury could have stolen the cattle right from under Apollo’s nose, or how some people can love a person that repels others, follow Mercury through it’s cycle, and check out where it is in the charts of friends. Mercury retrograde is a fascinatingly slippery little devil, and anyone who comes to know it laughs in genuine mirth at the mind’s ways, as Apollo did only a while after catching Mercury red handed with his cattle.

We were on the last leg of our day long journey of going and coming and I was reading an article from the New York Times. I was surprised to see it was the day’s edition and asked if he bought it at the stand. I know he can’t afford a subscription on his taxi driver income, much less the stand price. No, he didn’t buy it, but living near a university he has found ways…. “The article on Paul Krassner is in the front section, the next to the last page.” Something in the arts section had grabbed my attention but I dutifully picked up the A section, and after skimming some of the world news, found the obituary. Paul Krassner, Anarchist, Prankster and a Yippies Founder Dies at 87. They had a 1969 b&w photo of Krassner, Ed Sanders and Abbie Hoffman. I remarked that I would never have recognized any of them. I didn’t even know who Paul Krassner was. Abbie Hoffman was the only one I had ever heard of, and his baby face did not match the acerbic reputation I had heard about growing up. It looks like they were sitting on the ground against a wall, in the middle of a conversation. They all had long hair, of course. These were the hippies my parents had complained about – the ones leading fine young men, like my swimming champion older brother, into drugs and an anti government netherworld.

We were both relieved to be shifting toward what was a neutral subject for us. Only 10 minutes before, we were leaving his condo and he could not stop apologizing for the terrible state of uncleanliness. I was quietly horrified. He knew, and mentioned it several times throughout the day of driving, that there would be an uncomfortable reckoning when I saw how he is living. I’ve heard about the printed material he rescues from dumpsters, so I had an idea. His big worry was how I would react when I saw his beloved cat. I think the way I acted when I saw her, held my hand out for her to sniff me, and stroked her after a few minutes when it was clear she was not going to run away, confirmed his worst fears. I remarked on the smell of urine, and peaked in the bathroom. I could see a litter box in the tub, but the sand didn’t look bad. The bathroom was in really pitiful shape, dusty junk all over the counter, even some dusty jar was in the sink, - as a professional house cleaner I was unconsciously adding up the hours of work it would take just to clean the bathroom; but I could not be sure where the smell was coming from. I had left the bathroom and was talking to the cat. “I’m going to bug him to clean up around here, and..”

What?” he was coming out of the bathroom with another litter box that I had missed, it had no litter, but half a cup of urine sloshing around in the corner. Ah ha. That’s where the smell is coming from.

I’m talking to Pancake.” He named her Pancake because he found her in the middle of a busy highway when she was a little kitten. That’s what he was afraid she would become if he did not manage to cross the lanes of traffic after pulling off to the side. She let him pick her up though, and has lived with him ever since. Naturally, he’s afraid to let her spend much time outside, he lives on a busy road. “I’m telling her I will nag you until you clean up and in exchange I will buy Meow Mix for my cats.” I have 4. Ugh. Right now two of them shake their heads like they are trying to get water out of their ears, and one has the scratching signs on her ears that come every year with the heat. I clean their ears and squirt drops of over the counter ear mite meds into them. But still see some head shaking and scratching. Pancake, I’m told, turns her nose up at the Friskies which my cats live on, but eagerly gobbles Meow Mix, so I’ve resolved to remember that the next time I buy cat food. Maybe even spend more for something seriously satisfying.

After a bit of friendly affection Pancake jumped down from the stereo receiver and made her way across the piles of old magazines, like a hiker stepping on the rocks to cross a creek. When she reached the door to the porch, she pawed the trim. “Don’t do that!” He was almost hollering. I noticed the big gash in the trim from where she has clawed at it over the years. She really wants to go out. I had so much sympathy for both of them. I felt my old lover’s shame and I felt her longing to get some fresh air. As I looked around the apartment and mentioned just a few the things that needed to be done, I said I could see at least 80 hours of work to get it in decent shape. I was calm. I held back the urge to seek out a rag and clean something. He doesn’t even have a vacuum cleaner, just a little hand held ‘dust buster.’ I told him he needed an upright to get the hair out of the rugs, and he grabbed a broom and started sweeping the hair off a rug to the hardwood floor and then grabbed a dustpan to get it up.

I started feeling kind of sick. I wondered if it was exhaustion from the long day driving in the hot sun. I noticed there was a different smell and asked if he burns incense. “Not usually, but I’ve got some going now.”

It’s making me sick, and Pancake probably doesn’t like it.” He was hopping from one task to another and apologizing profusely.

So you think if I just clean up I don’t need to take her to the vet?” She’s lost a lot of her fur, and has scabs all over her head and neck. It sounds like the problem clears up for a few months in the winter, and then comes back with the heat. Every time he talks about her these worries about her scratching and hair loss come up. This is the first time I’ve been to his condo and seen the situation.

That’s my opinion.” I said it slowly, and stressed opinion. “I think if animal...” I was searching for the word, not animal control, whoever would come from city or county to inspect a home when there is a concern about animals. I think he said animal control and we agreed that wasn’t the word, but it was clear he understood what I was looking to say. “Yes, I think they would say this place is unhealthy. I don’t think you even notice the urine smell. You’ve gotten used to it.” It was one of those big moments when I know how drastically my life has changed. I knew there was a desperate longing deep inside that I would not allow to rise up. That old longing to dig in to a big mess. It was hard to imagine him rising to the challenge, the kind of challenge I have tackled day after day all my adult life.

The familiar feeling of exhaustion, the one I had ignored for decades, the way he ignored the smell of urine and put off cleaning for another day; that feeling of weakness was at the front of my mind. It won out over the urge to make everything better. And something else was different. I was still and quiet and careful, not because I was tired. I knew how awful he felt. I thought about how many times I have felt ashamed when the vet comes to check an animal and it is clear the problem has existed for a while. I have had to stand in my comfortable skin as she examines a cat or dog and makes no comment on the fleas crawling through the pet’s fur. Never, ever, have I been told my care is less than it could be. She always reassures me and says I am doing a great job. Then teaches me gently whatever little bit she can in the visit.

It was a relief for me to leave the apartment and be on our way. But my sweet Leo was still smarting from the moment of judgment. He kept repeating “So you think if I just clean up...” and I kept responding that that was my opinion. His Moon is at the end of Pisces, right where Venus was when I was born, about a year before him. So we’ve got that amazing tender spot together, that little place at the very end of Pisces right before it turns into Aries and the balance is tipped, or the seed explodes into new life; we share those experiences of letting go into a scary future, leaving panic behind and facing big consequences, because we have no choice, that’s the way life carries us, the way it moves everyone. We both have a planet in that pivotal spot. That’s where the moon was in the hour before he left Chapel Hill to pick me up. We were going to his home town to pick up his car. The home place has been sold and he has been back and forth several times cleaning out stuff accumulated over the years, stuff his mother surely wished he would have taken years ago. Now she is near the end of her life, she is weak and feeble and every week she lives is a great gift to him and his sister. The sister has done most of the work, bringing the mom to live with her, finding a long term care facility near where she lives, selling the house. He wishes they could take more time to do these things, does it all have to be so rushed? The sister gets irritated with him. Their mother says “Now you all have to get along.” and they do, at first for herand then when they are calmer, and their mother is having a good day or two, they relax and see how things are not so bad as all that, and after all, these things do have to be taken care of.

He says cleaning the condo was supposed to be his project for the summer, but then all this got in the way. This trip was the last. I was glad he asked me to help. He needed someone to drive his car back to Chapel Hill; he had left it at the old home in Windsor and used the family truck to go back and forth over the last several months. For me, it was a chance to get a last visit to the family home that I had not seen since we broke up in ‘94. I walked around and entered a giant three car garage with a second floor for extra shop space. His father had it built since the last time I had been there. There was a new addition on the house that I had heard about but not seen. His father was incredibly industrious, a giant of a man, in body and soul. Both parents taught in the local public schools and the dad worked some years in school administration. We met the buyer as we were about to leave. I had spent several minutes walking around the property asking about a little Lilly pond I did not remember. The fruit trees were still in good shape but the extensive garden the dad had kept for years was now a lawn; the only sign of its former existence was the nearly naked grape vine on the 3 long arbors still standing in the back yard. A memory flitted through my mind of the many baskets of scuppernong grapes that made their way to Raleigh from that productive vine. The mom could prune trees and shrubs, but as she got older the garden was too much. She did fine for a good few years after he died, carrying on with her volunteer job as a docent at the local historic site, visiting with friends and family. It was hard to accept that she could age too. But her heart is finally giving out …

I can imagine the dread he felt as he prepared to leave yesterday morning. He knew I would be horrified when I saw how he is living. He called last night a few hours after dropping me off at home. I was sacked out on the couch. “Thank you for guilting me into getting this done.” He wanted to tell me about all the stuff he had thrown away. But I was pretty worn out. So he called me back today. He said he had been up most of the night, and listed some of the stuff he had thrown away. I wondered if he filled the dumpster for the complex, and he said today was pick up so it’s all gone already. When we said goodbye and hung up I went back to studying charts.

People familiar with this blog might notice that I’ve included the option for the previous new moon for the first time. They call it prenatal new moon, but it’s really just the new moon immediately preceding any event under consideration. I just started using that option today. It’s kind of handy so I left it on when I got the chart for Paul Krassner. Outside the circle you can see the New Moon in the Libra dodecatemoria of Aries. Then inside the circle, for the big event, you can see the young crescent Moon in Taurus and the Sun in the Scorpio dodec of Aries. Nice to know where that cycle started.

I’ve posted a few times on Facebook about my recent involvement with Power Up. It’s drawing me back into the social world and off the couch. I keep telling myself I’ll just take one more baby step and see how things go. I went to a really good training session Saturday morn, and spent the afternoon and evening resting. Sunday I rested even more and got in some really productive studying. But then Sunday night there was a bru ha ha on Facebook over a neighbor’s party. Some high powered new professional in the neighborhood had taken pictures of the sea of beer cans in the front yard and posted them on the group page to our neighborhood. The tables and chairs had all been taken down, and all that was left to clean up were the scattered cans, but apparently the party hosts felt that could wait. One neighbor commented that it looked like the good old days. We used to have more Mexicans in this neighborhood and if you knew the right people you could get invited to a party almost every weekend, with a sit down dinner, all the beer, soda or juice you can drink, cake, pinata, music and dancing, catching up with friends… the good old days. Another neighbor suggested the poster get a life. She was clearly offended by the offended poster. “What kind of people are we renting to?” was flying above of the sea-of-beer cans pictures, like an advertising banner trailing the back of a low flying plane.

I was numb. It was like watching a kkk rally. How to respond to such attitudes, there didn’t seem to be any good thing to say. People chimed in that it was disgusting. The get-a-life neighbor couldn’t let it go. She had to let them know how foolish it is to be offended by beer cans in a front yard. I sat on the couch feeling like a zombie, unable to move, lost for ideas of what to do to stand up for my friends. The only reason I was not at that party is that I need so much rest. I love these parties, I love the time with my neighbors.

Then my next door neighbor called. She had seen the post and comments. The remark ‘disgusting’ was translated into Spanish as pigs, cerdos. Was that racist, that they were calling the Mexicans cerdos? “No,” I said. “It is not racist. It is overly righteous and intolerant, but it is not racist.” We talked about the American next to the sea-of-beer cans partiers whose backyard is so full of junked vehicles and fascinating old machinery that it is visible from the front. He was born and raised in the hood. No we don’t want to bring that up because it will make trouble for him. If the clean seniora has not noticed the American’s messy yard that is better. If she does she’ll make grief for him too. My next door neighbor friend told me she wanted to write a comment. She was at the party. It wasn’t like that when she left. The bags of garbage must have gotten torn and blown around. But her daughter discouraged posting a comment. It would just add fuel to the fire. I agreed.

I had napped and studied most of Sunday. I was still too tired to finish washing the dishes. But I had pitted a couple pounds of cherries and baked a crisp with them. The dishes were all rinsed and ready for the nice hot, soapy bath. I didn’t mind letting them wait. I was too tired to study, but that was ok, because my studies had been so productive in between naps, I was satisfied on that front. So I went to bed. But I couldn’t sleep. “Ugh!” I thought. “I hope this won’t be a drag on the road trip tomorrow.” I got my phone out and worked on memorizing my latest bit of Persian poetry. I looked up words in Google Translate. I read articles on Quora. I finally turned off the light for the last time at about 4am. When my guy phoned from out front at 6:51 to say he was here, it woke me from a bad dream.

At least I did not have to drive until we got to Windsor. I tried to read the paper, but my boyfriend was in the mood for conversation. Then I would hear something on the radio I wanted to follow and he would talk over it or turn it down. But none of these things going against my whims lasted long. Some how the little irritations stayed that way, and disappeared quickly. I read almost a whole article which I can’t even remember. I’ll remember it when I try though. Then, on the way from Windsor driving his car, I heard an interview with a trans lgbt rep who had been on a reality show. The interview was great. I was learning all kinds of new terminology that I’ve been confused about since the transgender movement has reached mainstream. I followed my boyfriend off the rural hiway and into a gas station. He needed gas and  a a snack. I didn’t want to admit I wanted to hear what they were talking about. It seemed so … me...the earnest lesbian feminist. But he was already finished filling both tanks and had moved his truck to the side parking lot. I sat behind the wheel of his car listening….He was motioning to me from the distant parking area. I had not even heard him fill the tank, I was so absorbed in the interview. I finally started up the engine, drove over to the parking area, and parked beside his truck.

You already filled this tank?’

Yes that’s why I told you I was going to park over here and get a bite to eat. Do you want something?” First I said no, then decided I should at least get a sip of water.

I fessed up on the way in to the Taco Bell attached to the gas station. I was dawdling because I wanted to hear the interview with a trans guy – a young man who had been born a woman. I was thinking about America and wondering if she wished I would refer to her as male instead of female. “I feel like Rip Van Winkle,” I said. The gay community has rocketed forward into the 21st century. I still remember gay couples sneaking into churches at night to Dignity meetings. He knew me when I first left the gay community in 1984. He knew how different things were back then.

You can listen. I can bring you something.”

No, I can hear the rest later if I want. It was a really good interview though.” That’s how comfortable I felt with him.

My boyfriend is not an issues kind of guy. He’s not exactly cynical, but he has no patience with people who take dogma seriously, whether it be Christian dogma, or gay/lesbian dogma. He doesn’t even know he’s like that. It’s just naturally the way he his. If he’s going to be friends with a person the wicked humor will surface suddenly like a kick board shooting out of the water when let go from the bottom of a swimming pool. One thing all his friends have in common is an ability to laugh freely at their own hypocrisy. Virtue is highly suspect. As the introspective astrologer I sort this out. He has no desire to describe himself or his motives to anyone. He would much rather read Proust than engage in conversation about what he or anyone else believes in. When angered, if he can’t come up with a hilarious insult, he’ll huff and puff and storm around. When he is sad, he is sad. When he is delighted and entertained, he is delighted and entertained. He knows there’s something behind it all, he’s read enough good fiction and watched enough thought provoking movies from countries all around the world that he’s quite familiar with the depths of the human soul. He can be polite to anyone who is civil with him. But when he gets angry, and it takes oh so little to make him angry, his rage is the most dramatic performance I have ever seen. I have seen it sooo many times. I have laughed at it so many times. And my laughter does not make him angry. It encourages the thought provoking jokes.

There’s something about the fire trine I’ve been meaning to describe on this blog for years. I like to meditate on trines. Like the trine of Cancer, Scorpio and Pisces; is religious dogma, occult/nature studies and spirituality. The trine of Taurus, Virgo and Capricorn; is laborer, clerical worker and manager. The trine of Gemini, Libra and Aquarius; is communication, partnership and executive. Well, the fire trine - these are all my outcomes on the meditation, think about them and see what you come up with….the fire trine to me, Aries, Leo and Sagittarius; is warrior, comic and philosopher. Anger and outrage fuels good comedy. Philosophy sharpens it. The best comedy, though rooted in anger, is aiming toward a deeper understanding. Aries anger, Leo Humor, Sagittarian philosophy. Philosophy as in understanding nature, not fighting it, not trying to beat it at its own game. Philosophy as in seeing our humble selves in the infinite web of life, comedy as in laughing at the absurdity of life, anger as in exploding into life, appearing as suddenly as the latest hit racing to the top of the charts. Meditation on trines is fun. Try it.

Look at all those planets that were in Aries when Paul Krassner was born. Mars, Sun, Uranus and Mercury. Uranus is the planet of social revolution. Look at all that anger, that need to stand up for some truth, to answer the inner call of the warrior. A warrior does not stand by and let comrades get mowed down by the enemy. A warrior returns fire and covers the back of the people on her side. I have Mercury in Aries, but with Sun in Taurus and 2 planets in Pisces I crave peace and tranquility. That need for peace gets in the way of standing up for what I think is right. With Mars and Venus in Pisces I question whether I even know what is right; and with Sun in Taurus I just want to pay the bills and live in quiet solitude. Almost every planet in Krassner's chart is ultimately ruled by Mars in Aries. Anger wins out.

And then there’s Jupiter across from Saturn in Aquarius. It’s that Jupiter which had only turned direct 16 hours before he was born that got me to start this post. If you didn’t know that Jupiter had been retro for several months you would not get the hidden maturity of its relationship with Saturn. In the chart Jupiter is less than 10 degrees into Saturn’s 7thhouse. Jupiter appears to be in the early stages of partnership status with ruling Saturn (the only planet powerful Mars is subject to). But a look into the ephemeris for 1931/2 reveals that Jupiter had advanced completely through Saturn’s 7th, almost 3 degrees into its 8th house before going retrograde in Dec 1931. So while the joke cracking philosopher looks to be just coming into balance with Saturn, it has actually had a few months shining through the night while the powerful General was lost to view in the glare of the Sun. It has actually advanced and regressed from a relationship of intimate power sharing with Saturn. And when we look at the even shorter cycle of Earth turning on its axis, a more powerful magnification setting in our microscopic view of time, Saturn the General, or Executive, was coming up the hour of Krassner’s birth (according to the time he gave from memory). Jupiter was high in the sky 5 hours before he was born and still visible above the treetops when he came into the midnight light. Jupiter in Leo. The prankster. And in the house of play, the 5th house after the ascendant, he had the still, quiet Sun in Taurus; and Venus in early Gemini. His humor was blistering and highly offensive but firmly centered and lightly affirming toward his peers. Look again at those 4 planets in Aries at the bottom of the chart and imagine an infant, from birth, receiving sustenance from a river of fire. What power does fear have over such a person?

This morning I thought about how gentle we were with each other yesterday. My boyfriend did not mock me for wanting to hear the interview with a queer activist. He prompted me to read about an activist who fought with humor and never backed down, blessed, as they say these days, with unshakable conviction. Sometimes I waver, in fact I’m always wavering. Does this really matter? Should I be so concerned about friends who can’t get a driver’s license? Should it bother me that there are fewer and fewer houses in the neighborhood these same friends can afford to rent? Is it my responsibility to speak out for them? What is my responsibility as a friend and neighbor?

Does this cat really need a clean house to live in? Is it really that awful that she is losing her fur and covered with bumps on her head and neck? What is the right thing to say when someone obviously knows they have failed and needs encouragement? What is the right thing to say when someone is inflamed with righteous anger?

My old boyfriend took the path that he knew would lead to a reckoning. He dreaded the reckoning, but finally faced it. I am going to a leadership training Thurs night with my next door neighbor. We are to learn how to be effective community organizers. I will never have the witty sense of humor that my boyfriend shares with Paul Krassner. My boyfriend will never be as eager to clean a mess as I am. But he can get the worst of it in a pinch. And I can find things to laugh at as I go over the upcoming meeting in Spanish so my neighbor will have some idea of what’s going on Thurs night. I can remember that Paul Krassner stood up for what mattered to him with courage and humor.

Tonight, I took a break from writing this post to help someone understand a form in English, then my neighbor and I spent almost an hour going over the training we will attend Thurs. It is more than twice as much work for her since she speaks very little English. But she’s game. Every time I say do you want to come? She says, “Si! Dios quiere.” We never know what Dios wants till it actually comes to pass. We just move forward the best way we know at the time.

My favorite part was Krassner’s comeback to being called the father of the underground press by People magazine, he demanded a paternity test. When I laughed out loud my boyfriend thought I was reading the part about some sexual farce involving Lyndon Johnson and John Kennedy’s dead body. I thought it was scandalous, but didn’t say so. My old boyfriend would never go to a leadership training for community organizing, but he doesn’t say so.

Now it is 1 oclock Wed morn and the Moon is past my Mercury in 20 Aries. I’ve written a post that’s way too long and taken a big basket of hours. But it’s here, for me to remember.

Friday, June 14, 2019

Frequency of wi fi Waves

I think I googled frequency of cellphone waves.  I had just sent my sister a text including "hugs across the cell towers" and it got me to thinking.  Well, this is the link I chose - wavelength of wi fi.  I love these relative puzzles. Sometimes I picture 2 thousand Barbie dolls treading water between the crests of 2 waves at the beach.  I lived at Holden  Beach for a few years when I was in high school.   I think the Barbie dolls represent water molecules in proportion to the length of a wave of green light.  Might be wrong, haven't done that meditation in a while.  I also can't remember why I used Barbie dolls in the visualization, maybe because they make me think of a super long line of Rockettes at Radio City Music Hall.  When I lived in Vienna, VA I went to a dance school led by the coolest teacher.  Her name was Mrs. Cuppet.  My mom said she had was a former Rockette.

Below is chart for 9:30, a minute or two after I read the linked article.  I liked the article so much I wanted to save it somewhere handy.

Thursday, April 25, 2019

The chart has Marsilio Ficino in the heading.  That's just left over from yesterday reading the Isaac Newton bio.  I came across a reference to Ficino and looked him up.  He was a Renaissance astrologer who translated Plato's works into Latin.  I made a chart for the moment I read about how he wrote against predictive astrology.

But that was yesterday, when the Moon was lined up with Saturn.  "Good work," I thought, "this biography is strange and slow going, but I am finding astrologers who I can look to for my base." It makes me feel that I have a firm foundation, now that I can refer to respected philosophers who frown on making predictions. 

Now, today the Moon is lining up with Pluto.  You can see where I put a blue highlight over Saturn, Moon and Pluto in the 6th house.  They just sunk under the western horizon about an hour ago. 

While they were above the horizon, in the 7th house of partnership, I was studying how to add a PayPal button to my blog.  When I took a break to make lunch before going to clean a house, I thought about how frustrating it would have been if I had felt really eager to get that button up. I remembered advice that came in my email from an astrology site.  They mentioned Saturn getting ready to turn retrograde, that it will back off its approach to Pluto.  They said anything not taken care of now will come back with a vengeance when Saturn goes forward again and lines up with Pluto in the new year.

I love the astrology service that sent the email.  I recommend them often.  They provide the most extensive free calculation services I know of on the web.  But I thought that ominous, "you had better get something done or face consequences months from now," was unsettling, and i was glad I have my own ideas of what Saturn regressing from Pluto is all about.

It reminds me why I am so passionate about people being comfortable reading a chart.  The only way to be at peace with the many cycles in our solar system is to follow them.

As I worked toward accepting payment for astrology consultations I considered how much I value silence, and time to study and meditate.  I am not a perky, feel good astrologer.  I am comfortable on the outskirts of society where there are few distractions.  That doesn't seem like a recipe for business success.  But since Moon is lining up with distant Pluto right now these thoughts don't disturb me.  I've observed my changing moods every month as the Moon approaches the demoted planet and I know this is just a reminder of how I am an outsider among a world of outsiders.

Also, I have contemplated previous events when Saturn lined up with Pluto - like Nov 1982 or Aug 1947.  I've thought about what was going on around the globe as well as in my little life.  Then there is the rest of the cycle between the two planets; when they are separating, when they are opposing.....they are always in some stage of a relationship to each other. 

That's what I want to help other people do, gain their own familiarity with the cycles.  Maybe it will happen and maybe it won't!

Friday, April 19, 2019

21st Century Supremicism

The chart below has a purple highlight over Mars in the first house.  It is about to "show itself" on the Eastern horizon.

I was reading the Wikipedia article about silver nitrate.  They said it used to be called luner caustic by the alchemists, because they believed it was associated with the Moon.  I got irritated by the umpteenth remark implying that ancestors exploring the technical wizardry of nature were ignorant.  Among the Greeks techne and sophe both referred to skill.  So philosophy meant the study of how nature works it's skillful magic.

Naturally a bit of poetry was used to describe the exalted processes of nature's works, in the same way modern physicists call quarks (quarks!) charmed or strange, or categorize quarks and gluons ...Gluons! ("They believed it was associated with glue.")... Modern use of poetic language to describe the wonders of nature is only more enlightened than previous generations BECAUSE of the knowledge they passed on to us.

I am reading Priest of Nature, biography of Isaac Newton, and am constantly wondering at the modern supremicist judgements scattered throughout the work.  The author is presenting a lot of really good info, some straight from Newton's manuscripts, and info about what Newton read, but he makes repeated judgements about Newton's attitudes that make me wonder if he has fully synthesized Newton's life circumstances.

When he makes offhand remarks about Newton's seething anger with Trinitaran Christian dogma being over the top, I wonder if he would make similar criticisms of my friends' extreme anger with the current state of our government.

So there i was, seriously irritated with the constant, obligatory negative remarks about alchemists.  One day they will say of us, "They believed a big man in a red suit rode a sled through the sky and brought presents to allll the children in the world," and how many of us will recognize that we are on the receiving end of the same prejudiced sloppy thinking that we use to describe the studious work of our ancestors.

I like to look at charts of the sky to see what's up when I notice strong emotions rising in me.  Mars rising.  Mars in Gemini.  I felt a militancy about communication rising at that moment.

You could say I believe Mars rising was associated with that moment.  Especially if you take 'belief' to mean 'holding something dear.'. But you must then remember the same could be said about nuclear physicists and their color charges of quarks.  Poetic language is a tool to aid the memory.  Making intellectual connections between various natural phenomena is a way of organizing the sensory input of the world we live in.

Throwing Newton and other students of nature in the same category as people who take colorful stories as literal truth reflects badly on the categorizers.

Monday, February 4, 2019

America just stopped by and left me some pan de Mexico, made by her mom. She moved out Jan 20. She was actually gone except for her bed in the garage and a nightstand by Sun the 13. Ugh. The tears again!

The first chart is for 4:38 this eve when Renee came home and said, “Guess what I got!” She finally got a copy of John Dancy-Jones’s Raleigh Nature. Wow. Still have not gotten a good look. Saw a few of his illustrations. Really amazing. So, that’s a cool moment. She had to run off as soon as she cleaned out all the stuff that accumulates in her car. Renee lives like an urban gypsy. She spends more time on the street, hanging with friends, attending music or art events, community meetings, or just chilling alone in the rose garden at the park, than she does at home. The book keeps selling out at the local book store, but she finally hit the store while they were in stock. So now she is going over to a mutual friend’s house to talk about an upcoming housesitting gig.

I was sitting outside, enjoying the warm evening. The house was freezing today. 51 degrees on the thermostat is usually cold, but my preferred temp in the house. Today it was weird though – it looked so cloudy outside, I kept forgetting how much warmer it was out there. I didn’t want to go for a walk because I needed to get stuff done around the house. I start a new customer tomorrow morn, and that is like going on a blind date. I always fall in love with my customers. So, I had gotten the counters full of dirty dishes cleaned, made bread dough, and fixed a nice meal of taters with cabbage, bit of broccoli, and other goodies. I was sitting out on one of the chairs in front of the house, with one of the cats, Mimi, on my lap. Tiger was playing with the water. She likes to tip the water dish.

I saw America pass like she was headed for her sister’s house (Nati) down the street. Next thing I knew she was headed back and slowed down in front of the house. Hmm.

She was pretty mad when she moved out. She left the key without even telling me or saying good bye. I couldn’t blame her. It was totally cool. I love her and feel sure she loves me; but we sure were due for a break. So having the back room empty, and less music and beer drinking and smoking is cool with me. I figure she won’t stay mad forever. She just needs a break from MP.

Well she stopped the car and got out with a plastic shopping bag. Did I want some pan from Mexico. “Ohhh, America!” I whined, “I’ve got masa rising.” She took a piece out and said, “This kind you have to taste.” It was rosca, the bread they bake for Three Kings’ Day. I took a piece that was already broken off. “That’s just a piece,” she said. “That’s all I can eat!” I complained. Then she pulled out corn patties, “Just one!” I begged. No. She was adamant and said I had to try those, they’re just corn, but you heat them up and they’re sabrosa. Then she broke off a piece from a brown bread, I recognized, like a molasses or ginger bread. “Oh! I know that kind,” I said. But I couldn’t remember the word for ginger bread or molasses. Shoot, I never have learned the name of that bread, but I know I’ve had it. They do this a couple of times a year. They know not to offer the dried meat or fish. But the pastries they can get me to enjoy. I swear one time their brother told me about getting dried iguana. Iguana is pretty plentiful game in their parts. And fish, they live on a river, so lots of fish.

Well I feel better now. The tenderness has passed. America is so important to me, the posts about her make that clear. I did not want to let pass the opportunity to document this big step in our life. We are separated, her life is changing in ways I can only imagine. She has lived for more than 6 years in an American house. I’m not going to look the date up now. She’s been living here a long time. I remember the post a year or so ago when I talked about discovering that she had begun taking night classes.

A week after she moved out, the day I bought my new phone and switched to a cheaper cell service, I was sitting on the couch figuring out the new phone and service when I got a call from her. She wanted to know if I could come down and interpret for her at her sister’s house. A cop was there, and she wasn’t sure what he was saying.

Uh oh. Here it comes again. I was so dispassionate that day. But now it is sinking in. She had been robbed at gun point over the weekend. There was a gash on her chin and forehead. The cop was a detective come to show photos of possible suspects. The regular routine of me referring to her using a female pronoun after the cop referred to her using the male. Everyone takes her for a man. I suspect her nephews, Nati’s two sons, are not sure which gender pronoun to use. It is confusing enough to grow up speaking Spanish at home and English in school, sorting out the gender of their aunt falls by the linguistic wayside. She’s generous to them, but bossy and has a temper. She takes them to mass and MacDonald’s every Sunday, the State Fair every year. They know they can get what ever they want from her. But they also know they are to sit quietly in the pew and pay attention to the sermon or there will be a long sermon from La Koala. That’s her apodo, or nickname. She works on roofing crews with men. She dresses like a man. She drinks beer, shoots pool, and tosses piropos to the women with men. But she is always a woman to me. A very special woman and a friend for life.
The second chart is for 6:22 when La Koala stopped and gave me pan de Mexico.

It is 7:38 Sunday night. I hope I can stop by the library and upload this post after my exciting fun at a new customer’s house tomorrow. 

Renee comes home and says, "Guess what I got!"  She finally nabbed a copy of John D-J's Raleigh Nature.
America stops by and delivers pan de Mexico.

Tuesday, January 29, 2019

Why Cry?

It occurs to me these could be crocodile tears, or the so called fake crying of distressed infants, which never felt insincere to me. My bony old calico empress of the cat pack was nowhere to be seen when I got home last night. I made a quick circuit of the neighbors’ yard and mine with the mini klieg light on my phone, and called, “Here kitty, kitty, kitty!” over and over. Still no sign of her this morn.
Around 7:15 I got fresh texts from an old lover, now married to a strong woman; I guess it has been a year since the first email came from the blue, like Zeus, Athena, or some theatrical character with the power to astonish. Theatrical was what they called it back in the olden days of Thucydides and Plato when people went to see something. Old time religion. Old time ways of uniting a populace with common emotional experiences. Modern astrologers categorize this type of cultural engagement under the sign of Cancer. I hope one day to read Aristotle and learn what he said about categories.
I jump around so when I type. The thoughts are slowed down in the process of recording them, and related ones invite themselves in to the – record. They weren't in the mix when I started out though. In other words I was not thinking of Plato or his colleagues when I set out to talk about, or wonder about, why I cry.

Raleigh, the town where I live, was facing the Moon. I had looked at all of my progressions earlier; secondary, tertiary and minor progressions. It wasn’t at the top of my mind, but I had seen the transiting Scorpio Moon at the top of the chart after I put food out for the early cats. Only two of the five were on the front porch, waiting for a bite to eat. It occurred to me when I got the chart up from astrodienst, that looking at charts was a form of prayer. I was already sadder and more worried that Squeaky was not waiting at the door to come in, eat her pureed food, and occupy my lap. The chart was my alternative to wondering if her absence had anything to do with the times I thought, “how much longer can this go on?” while putting the food in the blender, using the rubber spatula to get as much as possible into the dish, and then cleaning the whole operation so it would be ready for the next meal. How long can I take this time to nurse a cat turning into skin and bones? The charts of the ecliptic are for praying to the gods, the entities that precede us and continue to make their rounds, when our brief existence has evaporated into less than thin air, into mere memory.
I repeatedly point out this obvious comparison of the planets’ longevity compared to our life, as a liturgy to combat the notion that Saturn and the rest of the group are a pack of symbols or statues or stories, which, be they edifying, esoteric, or entertaining are ultimately creations of the collective human mind. The actual planets, unlike the statues and stories, precede human existence, or at least that’s the accepted order of the universe that I gather, the logos as they put it back in the olden days on the Balkan peninsula.

Please do pardon me for taking the exit ramp from the high speed path to my original thought. 
I could see the line of the MC just to the right of the Moon at 29degrees Scorpio. I reckon it was about 7:00am the first time I looked at a chart of the day’s transits. The sky was cloudy with shades of blue and white, and even some rosy hues in the east where the Sun was about to appear. I had chastised myself for not stepping out as soon as I got up from bed to see if I could spot Venus and Jupiter. But the sky from my front window looked so cloudy I supposed I could not even see the culminating Moon. The first order, logos, was to get the crunchies from the freezer and dump some in the dishes for the two cats that were waiting. Bitsy, the young manx, crouched at the door ready to enter, and Brownie, the oldest of the bunch, but still strong and healthy, circled hopefully. Breakfast! Sometimes I let Bitsy in to eat. As the newest member of the pack (three or four years ago) she gets a lot of swipes. But with just the two of them, things are more relaxed.  So I put my foot where she tried to enter the opening door and told her she could eat outside today with Brownie.

No Squeaky. No Squeaky. What is going on in heaven when worry pulls on my mind? The map is so important. It is a spiritual tool. No one can see the whole ecliptic at one go, even if the Sun is not shining, a good half of the planetary highway is blocked from view by the big wide Earth. And it is so much more accurate than what I can detect with nothing but my eyes. The map is stuffed, like a Thanksgiving Turkey, with information about the ecliptic that has been gathered over centuries by dedicated observers. 
7:22am, that’s when the text came in from the former, ohhh let’s call a skydiver a skydiver, and say... old sex buddy. He reappeared in my life via email, and we soon exchanged phone numbers and moved to texting. Now I hear from him once in a blue moon, I’m just using that phrase as a vague expression of the sporadic timing. I guess it is also more poetic. This morning he asked if I remembered when we went to the Blind Tiger. I had to ask what it was. A topless bar. “You mean the Foxy Lady?” I could barely remember, ha ha. He said we stayed in the motel next door. I remembered a motel stay, but somehow it had gotten separated in my mind from the loud music and g-string dancers at Foxy Lady. That must have been after I had worked for a month at the Hungry I in San Francisco. I was a bit shy to talk to the dancers in Raleigh, but I liked being in the bar and feeling a tenuous sisterhood with them.

So, many memories, such a long eventful life, sooo much sex. This week it keeps popping up. My Scorpio Moon is behind it all. Every thought, or event associated with sex I attribute to my Scorpio Moon. I used to say associate, as in connect; drawing a line from one image to another in a school exercise, this goes to this as that goes to that. This verb goes with this noun. But since I’ve been reading Spinoza’s Ethics I say ‘attribute,’ as in ‘paying tribute.’ It makes me think of grateful Ionian islanders paying tribute to the Athenians for the first few years after the whippersnapper Hellenes repulsed the mighty Median Empire. To say I attribute these considerations of sex, an integral step in the process of life, to my Scorpio Moon is to pay homage to the Earth and other bodies of the solar system as sustainers of the life I seem to lead. To use the word ‘attribute’ instead of ‘associate,’ shows that I feel not so much a partnership with these heavenly bodies, as awe and respect. I have nothing to teach them, but everything to learn from them. So I don’t just categorize or associate the sexual theme of this week with Scorpio and my birth on a day when the Moon was in Scorpio, but I pay my respects to the solar system that literally made this journey possible. 

Just to be clear, when I say heavenly bodies I include the one we live on, and I assume they are all connected – by the logos, or as they say these days, gravity. Some law or other.

Doesn’t the New Testament begin with that declaration? In the beginning was the law? Or the order? In the beginning was the logos. Why do they translate logos as word?
And sex was a part of that order. So was death. Are growth, corruption, love and war not steps in the order of life that has generated human existence? Have these not been with us since the beginning?
Then why do I want to cry because Squeaky is not at the front door? Why does the thought of telling my old sex buddy about being diagnosed with Grave’s disease bring a little tear? Sex and death are even more inseparable than love and marriage. They don’t go together like a horse and carriage, they go together absolutely. There’s that logos again. Can’t have life without corruption. It’s the law.

I thought, as I went for the solace of the charts, “This is a sign that I still have far to go on the spiritual path to liberation, this urge to cry.” No one is here. No one will see the tears. They speak only to me. “Mary Pat, this is where you are,” is what they say. “You are carried in the flow of life and ignorant of what’s beyond.”

So, now, after thinking about Raleigh facing the Scorpio Moon at sunrise, after writing this essay while the Moon passed into Sagittarius, and Raleigh turned eastward making the Aquarian Sun rise and the Sagittarian Moon slip to the west, after reminding myself and my readers that this is the world that gave birth to us; after all that, the urge to cry has passed. I’m still looking for Squeaky, but resisting hope. I’m still enjoying the pleasure of reconnecting with a good friend, but resisting desire. I’m still curious, but reminding myself that curiosity keeps me here, as I need a body to satisfy it, and that as long as I remain in this body I am limited. 
The first chart is for the moment I received the first text from my old friend. You can see the Moon at 28degrees Scorpio 51minutes.  It is the crescent next to the capital letters MC.  MC means midheaven, which you can think of as where we see the Sun at midday.

And now it is 5:44pm. I am using wifi at the library. The next chart is for 3:16pm when the neighbors on my other side knocked on my door. The teenaged siblings I’ve watched grow up, Felix and Claudia. I saw them approaching the door and got up to answer before Felix even knocked softly. “Umm, Maria, my mom said she found one of your cats near the steps this morning. There weren't any signs of blood….” I grabbed a towel and went to retrieve Squeaky’s corpse. As I lifted her nearly rigid body in the towel I said, “The bitch kitty is gone!” and gave an embarrassed laugh. “Where ever your spirit is we love you Squeaky!” and then I said, something like this is how we all have to end. Their looks of tenderness broke into startled smiles. I turned and went quickly. I don’t want so much to resist crying as to focus on what is actually happening. Squeaky is free.