Planet Waves
New York, Wednesday, April 25, 2012

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The Lighter Side of Taurus

Dear Friend and Reader:

The Sun is now in Taurus, the first earth sign of the astrological year, and the first fixed sign. After the fiery start of the cycle in Aries, Taurus stands as an anchor in the zodiac, making sure that the cosmic wheel doesn't go flying off the axle. Taurus offers consistency, a sense of grounding in the sensual world, and its own special kind of fertile chaos.

Planet Waves
The Persistence of Memory by Salvador Dali, 1931. The landscape is as much part of the message as are the melting pocket watches. Image from Wikimedia Commons.
I'm sure many of you who attract those from among the herd of Taurus people have noticed some of this. With that stability covered, then comes the need for flexibility and change. That's not always so easy in Taurus Land, though the configuration of the sky is telling a different story this year. Two main features describe this, though by the time I'm done writing this article I am sure I'll come up with a few more.

Think of this sign as a place where the soul goes through a tempering process. Just like the Earth itself, Taureans are hot, hot, hot on the inside and cooler on the outside. Just like the Earth, they can be all temperatures and all climates on the outside, though that core is always burning. To an observer looking at the exterior of a person, they might see a slow-moving majestic quality, the kind of quiet dignity that you feel in a forest.

Yet this inner-outer temperature differential creates a pressure dynamic within the person. Looking at or even speaking casually to someone with this sign strongly placed in their chart, you might not figure that out. It's revealed in the indescribable magnetism they have; a certain compelling quality that almost everyone notices. It's a subtle kind of intensity, and it's powerfully creative.

My personal favorite Taurus artists include Bono, David Byrne, Brian Eno and Salvador Dali; then there is Carrie Fisher (Moon in Taurus), Audrey Hepburn, Meryl Streep (Moon in Taurus), Dionne Warwick (Moon in Taurus) and Barbra Streisand -- notice more than a few unforgettable voices among them. Taurus is the sign associated with the throat, speech and vocal quality.

Planet Waves
The Lady With the Lamp (Miss Nightingale at Scutari, 1854). From the painting by Henrietta Rae, Library of Congr. Prints & Photos Division.
Taurus energy can be obsessive, and driven to service in a way often ascribed to Virgo. Pioneering nurse Florence Nightingale had both the Sun and the Moon in Taurus, in a close conjunction.

She laid the foundation for the modern nursing profession with her devotion, foresight and attention to detail. So on the one hand we could say that while Taurus energy is resistant to change, that's another way of saying it has the stability to be a pillar of society. Her contributions went on and on, and she lived to the age of 90. If you're curious about this sign, I suggest you read about her truly fascinating and visionary life.

Time feels different when you're a Taurus (depicted by Dali's visions of melting clocks; they were autobiographical). It’s rather like how a geologist will look at a mountain range and see an animation: they see the glaciers in motion (even though that was 25,000 years ago), they see the gradual uplifting taking place, and they see the evidence of long spans of time.

Most of us look at a mountain and see something just standing there, and it is -- but the motion is subtle and persistent. Like mountains, Taurus has an enduring quality (Queen Elizabeth II) -- but it is far from stagnant.

As for what is different about our current Taurus experience. One salient quality of our moment is that Jupiter is in Taurus. It has been there for just under a year; all Taurus birthday (solar return) charts for 2012 will have Jupiter in Taurus as a distinctive feature.

Jupiter's energy expands and magnifies. In a fixed sign, it will offer some extra flexibility. It can bring to visibility the best qualities of this sign, as well as have a softening quality. This lightens the energy of what can be a serious and reserved sign. If Taurus tends to see the world in sharp contrasts (it often seems this way), Jupiter is adding subtle shades and hues. That includes a more philosophical approach to life and a wider worldview and self-concept. For many with strong Taurus placements, this is a time of spiritual awakening. For everyone, Jupiter in Taurus is an opportunity to notice what is valuable, and treat it that way (that's a useful description of spiritual).

Planet Waves
Venus in Gemini. Photo by Eric Francis / Book of Blue - New York. Link to higher resolution version.
The other standout feature this year is that Venus, the traditional ruling planet of Taurus, is in Gemini for an extended visit. This is another picture of mutable energy influencing Taurus, as Gemini is all about flexibility. We're also about to experience Venus retrograde in Gemini, though this is a special event because it involves the Venus transit of the Sun in early June. All Taurus solar return charts include Venus in Gemini, which brings the quality of mental vibrance to all things Taurean this year. I think of Venus in Gemini as a picture of emotional (Venus) intelligence (Gemini). This will serve to make Venus more expressive in words and tangible ideas than it might ordinarily be.

Venus is our most vivid representation of goddess energy in traditional astrology, and we sure could use some of that now. The professional pool sharks we call politicians have resurrected every anti-woman concept, policy and plan they can cram onto the airwaves. The Venus transit of the Sun, which takes place June 5, is a moment when the world will see Venus not as a bright feature of the night world, as we're accustomed, but rather as a celestial feature visible in the light of day.

Astrologer Adam Gainsburg has described this as the emergence of the solar feminine -- the boldly creative expression of feminine energy. Think of the Sun being penetrated by Venus, then pouring the energy out in all directions as pure, vivid light. One gift this will offer is some balance, yet it's more than that. Fully expressed, hot, clear, creative feminine energy is something that most people have not considered, much less experienced, and as you might imagine it's making some people nervous.

It will be beautiful to see what influence this has on the world, and on you.

Eric Francis

Taurus 2012 Birthdays: Behold the Solar Feminine

Dear Taurus Reader:

I've just finished your 2012 audio reading, a high-energy, loving, inspired look at your astrology over the next year. This is a special year for Taurus, due to the Venus transit of the Sun. Nothing like this again will happen until 2117 (not 2017, but a century later).

Planet Waves
Venus being the planet that represents you, this must mean something -- and you can probably feel that something arriving in your life. It is indeed time for a change, though this is change on a cellular level, a re-creation of who you are. The Venus transit of the Sun describes someone who is bolder, more assertive and better able to tap your creative potential. This is the you who can shine out in the world, and who is bold enough to welcome some glory and excitement into your life. There is a message in this transit about finding your voice, valuing who you are, and a beautiful, mysterious end to the way that two values systems have competed for your loyalty.

The transit of Venus is a cosmic gift that will help you get clear about what's important to you, what you want and what you want to be doing. There's no need to worry about 'getting this right'. Rather, what you're being called to do is approach the future with an open mind, willing to let go of what is not working to make room for what is -- when the time comes. I also describe the influence of Jupiter in your sign, as something that facilitates change -- as well as Jupiter's entry into Gemini as the onrush of new ideas and priorities.

In the second segment, I work with the transits to your relationship angles, taken from three perspectives. In this part, I go over the influence of Mars retrograde in Virgo (technically over, though still having profound effects). Perhaps the most significant relationship transit is Saturn entering your opposite sign in October, which yet again describes clearing away old values and situations and embracing something clear and mature. And I cover Chiron and Neptune in Pisces, your house of hopes, dreams and your visions for your life. These transits in particular will offer you new ways to have both social and erotic relationships.

Planet Waves
Your astrologer -- Eric Francis. Photo by Darcy.
Part three is the tarot reading using the Voyager deck. Before I get into that, however, I talk about the rather beautiful way the Uranus-Pluto square is working to wake you up to who you are, and shed the conditioning that has, in the past, prevented you from making contact with yourself. I will let the tarot reading speak for itself -- it's a beautiful spread.

In this reading, I guide you through your astrology in easy to understand language -- not technical jargon. This is an impassioned reading, offered in the spirit of motivation, liberation and your responsibility to yourself.

Your birthday reading includes the charts I used to create it, photos of the tarot cards and free access to last year's Taurus reading so you can check on both how you handled the astrology and test how accurate I was. There are also special discounts on other products.

All of this is just $19.95. You have unlimited access to the page, as well as the ability to download the audio as an archive to listen to in iTunes (on any device).

Eric Francis

Planet Waves

Monthly Horoscope for May 2012. | Eric's Zodiac Sign Descriptions

Aries (March 20-April 19)
Aries (March 20-April 19) -- If you've been through a crisis recently, I suggest you look at where it enabled you to go, which is someplace you might not have gone without it. Mercury has been in your sign for a few weeks, stirring things up. Yet this has clearly been a project with a purpose. Recent events have conspired to bring you up to date with the times we're living in. Even for an Aries, it's too easy for the human brain to live in the past, and to get wound up in familiar patterns. Your mind is doing its best to burst free for you; it would be fantastic if you would consciously help with the process. If you feel that anything is blocking you, the chances are it's a kind of mental block based on an attachment to something that is no longer valid in your life. Said another way, you may be turning an attachment (to someone or something) into an element of your identity, and confusing it with who you are. People do this all the time -- but you have much better options. You have, over the past few weeks, seen some glimpses of the future. You may have wondered whether the best potentials were really possible -- and I assure you that they are. You tend to become what you identify with, and if you want to become something new, I suggest you identify with that. You will distract yourself from the past, and crystallize what is real and valid in this moment.

Hello Aries -- Eric has written a new description for your sign that you have access to from this link (no password needed).

Taurus (April 19- May 20)
Taurus (April 19-May 20) -- Now would be a good time to realize that you cannot proceed through life with two competing sets of values. What seems like superficial confusion often masks this very issue -- that you're trying to make decisions based on deeper principles that conflict with one another. As long as you're wondering whether you want to do this or that, you're still hanging out on the surface. When you find yourself asking why you want to explore one particular option, and why you want to explore some other particular option, and how you feel about those reasons, then you're getting closer to the heart of the matter. Yet the real discovery comes when you find out that you have several programs running at the same time, which guide you in different directions. These conflicting programs will be problematic only if the conflict is 'unconscious' -- that is, if you're not aware of the roots of the debate, or even that the debate has roots. Those can reach into many places, but the one thing they have in common will be the past. You now have the opportunity to decide what values are truly your own, and you have a bold moment to allow your life to be guided by them and nothing else. Between where you stand today and the confidence that this will give you, there's a process you'll undergo -- and it will take you into some forgotten places. You will benefit from learning, and from using what you learn to make conscious choices. This way, you will be one person, guided by what is actually meaningful to you.
Hello Taurus -- Eric has written a new description for your sign that you have access to from this link (no password needed).

Gemini (May 20- June 21)
Gemini (May 20-June 21) -- An eclipse of the Sun takes place in your sign on May 20, then two weeks later is the Venus transit of the Sun, also in your sign. This is a truly rare conjunction of the Sun and Venus, so precise that you can actually watch it happen (with eye protection, and if the Sun is visible where you are). Visible translates to visionary, and a personal turning of the eras. Let's begin with a question. What would your life be like if you resolved much of the nagging tension that you carry around, year after year? What if your mind were a quieter place? How much more confident would you be? To understand the influence of this event, I suggest you look back to this time of year in 2004. What is the story of May and June of that year? This is one of the key 'before and after' points of your life. Venus transits come in pairs, separated by eight years, and 2004 was the first of the current pair. Think of '04 as a time when you initiated changes that you didn't necessarily recognize were part of a total self-reinvention. You embarked on 'another way of looking at the world'. This comes to full fruition during the next six weeks. You may find yourself making long-delayed decisions, finding the courage to express yourself in ways you've always hesitated to, or being released into a total rebirth. Look around and remind yourself: the end of the past is near.

Hello Gemini -- Eric has written a new description for your sign that you have access to from this link (no password needed).

Cancer (June 21- July 22)
Cancer (June 21-July 22) -- In astrology, the 12th house is like a hidden dimension, a vast psychic closet where we keep everything we think we've forgotten, or that we were never quite aware of. Often things disappear into this realm, and sometimes they emerge -- for example as unusually potent dream imagery, or as discoveries about ourselves we make in therapy or on a vision quest. Sometimes revelations can be precipitated by astrology itself, and that's what it looks like is happening to you now. The highly unusual sequence of events of the next six weeks is concentrated in this area of your chart, as if you're being granted access to the hidden dimension of yourself. Given that this is the place most people avoid (because it's too strange, or they would 'rather not know'), I suggest you open up your mind to self-discovery. Certain ideas you have about yourself may suddenly reverse; but mostly the theme I see is self-reconciliation. It's as if a split you've lived with all your life, but were barely aware of, is finally going to make itself known, or resolve itself. In the process, you can make peace with many things that you've denied, including the split itself. This may include divisions between your male and female sides; rational versus intuitive approaches to existence; and other competing forces in your psyche. There is a point of resolution, and you're approaching it quickly. One result will be freeing the energy that it takes to maintain the division -- energy that you will have good creative use for.

Hello Cancer -- Eric has written a new description for your sign that you have access to from this link (no password needed).

Leo (July 22- Aug. 23)
Leo (July 22-Aug. 23) -- You are only as successful as you feel. I'm sure you've noticed that many are driven by hunger and accomplish many things, only to feel like they're failures. This is in a sense the story of Western civilization; it's all about an empty kind of desire, and when the desired thing is attained, it goes into the abyss. I suggest you monitor this issue carefully this month. You are at what could rightly be one of the most fulfilling times in your life, in whatever you consider your core mission to be. Yet it seems as if there's a shadow you keep encountering. Sometimes it feels like a question. Other times it feels like your most cherished goal keeps slipping out of reach. The most meaningful thing you can do is not be distracted by what amount to mental illusions, distractions or what you might think of as self-defeating programs. Stick to your goals; stick to what you want and let any doubts you have serve to make your plan and work method stronger. One theme that comes up is what it's like to have the reputation that you do. Any public presence, even a moment in the spotlight, can cause weird feedback inside the ego. Wondering how you're perceived by others can be a strange experience. You don't need to worry what people think; trust that they respect you, and know that you've earned that respect by your dedication to service and your ability to walk in the strength of your true principles.

Hello Leo -- Eric has written a new description for your sign that you have access to from this link (no password needed).

If you have more questions than answers, consider this.

We will soon figure out that it's actually 2012. The recent retrogrades of Mars and Mercury seemed to create a delay, but really this winter and early spring has been a phase of gestation. Over the next four weeks, the energy starts to pick up pace dramatically, and we will discover where we are and that something unusual, and beautiful, is happening. Even as we approach the truly beautiful potential of the astrology that's developing, many people are struggling with their day-to-day lives. There are more questions than answers; the economic and political situations seem hopeless; the pace of existence is going so fast that there seems to be nowhere to get in a little meaning, or seek some peace of mind.

Planet Waves
Here is where astrology can help. Astrology looks at the longer cycles, and the deeper themes -- and can help you see your life in context of the present moment, no matter how chaotic it may be. Context means a sense of where you fit in that will help you see your potential and make better choices.

For years, I've been helping my clients prepare for making the most of the astrology of the 2012 era. Based on this experience, and many years of study, I've prepared a set of readings for all 12 signs (and rising signs, and Moon signs) that guides you through this astrology, step by step. I cover the most challenging and energized developments of this spring, which includes eclipses, Venus retrograde, the Venus transit of the Sun, and then a few days after the Sun ingresses Cancer, the Uranus-Pluto square.

I suggest you get this report in its current form, where you have access to all 12 signs. This way, you will be able to listen to your Sun, Moon and ascendant, and gain added depth. You can listen to your opposite sign and learn something about how this astrology will influence your relationships. Each sign gets a half-hour discussion. These came through loud and clear, with strength and meaning. I spent a week designing and recording them, and I am grateful to be able to offer them to you as a tool to help you guide your decisions, as you seek deeper meaning along your journey.

Spring 2012 is a kind of checkpoint along the way to wherever you are going. But really it's a calling into the adventure of existence, a bold invitation to go beyond your past limits and explore something truly new about yourself.

All 12 signs are now available for $19.95. Next week they will go on sale for $9.95 each with no discount for multiple signs. The report is getting rave reviews from people who are currently working with it, including these words from a customer named Donna: "OMG -- thank you thank you thank you -- just spent this morning listening to my [Spring Report] info, and am so blown away by the accuracy (and relief!) in this experience. Thanks so very much for your part in supporting this work and for showing up in the way that you do!". Here is the link to order.

Individual signs will be available soon -- please drop us a note if you want to be notified of when, or if you have any other questions.

Eric Francis

Virgo (Aug. 23- Sep. 22)
Virgo (Aug. 23-Sep. 22) -- You're blessed to exist within two worlds, as far as your professional goals come. You have two distinctly different sets of talents, missions in life and leadership skills. Often these worlds seem far apart, and each seems to exclude the other. You might feel that your work or creative life would be perfect if you could only get these two different aspects of yourself working together for one goal. I would propose that they have more in common than you may think. At some point in the past, they may have existed as one body of thought or even a single goal. But the way the world divides and categorizes things, they became two seemingly separate realities. Yet they have one important thing in common: you. Over the next few weeks, you will have an opportunity to travel back into the origins of your most meaningful goals. If you follow this adventure, you may arrive at the spot before they differentiated. You're about to discover the many things they have in common, and how they support one another, mainly by allowing you the more full use of your brain. This is likely to reach the level of full synthesis, where you have the experience of being more than the sum of your parts. You have many talents, intellectual skills and perceptive abilities, and they all support one another. Yet when you encounter this as a direct experience, whether in subtle or obvious ways, your life can truly shift.

Hello Virgo -- Eric has written a new description for your sign that you have access to from this link (no password needed).

Libra (Sep. 22 - Oct. 23)
Libra (Sep. 22-Oct. 23) -- Beliefs interfere with perceiving existence as it is. This is one reason why so much that's not even vaguely true is accepted on a mass scale; the test of whether something is valid is belief, which favors those who are more convincing. Your astrology this month vividly describes your process of testing every belief that you come across. The question is, how do you know something is a belief? First you have to be curious about the nature of your own thoughts. In a sense, you have to fact-check yourself. When you 'know' something and have no basis for that knowledge, or you discover that someone told you but offered you no proof, then you're dealing with a belief. Another hint will be when you step into a world of multiple viewpoints on the same, something that you're a bit famous for. Looked at one way, this indicates that you're working in the realm of beliefs rather than of concrete knowledge. Yet if you are able to look at something enough ways, you will eventually begin to understand its deeper nature -- including yourself. It's time to penetrate through these things into something tangible. You may feel this involves making a commitment to something that you're uncertain of. Really, the commitment is to finding out; to admitting that uncertainty and finding out what's on the other side. This won't undermine your faith in yourself, or in life, or in the cosmos; a commitment to seeking actual knowledge will only strengthen your faith.

Hello Libra -- Eric has written a new description for your sign that you have access to from this link (no password needed).

Scorpio (Oct. 23- Nov. 22)
Scorpio (Oct. 23-Nov. 22) -- Someone you love is serving as a powerful mirror. By powerful I mean emotional, intellectual and spiritual: they're offering a full-spectrum image. You may not understand what you see, but somehow you recognize it as your reflection. It's revealing many aspects of yourself that until now have existed outside of your ability to see them, or notice their significance. In relationships, we often seek our 'other half', and desire self-completion in sexual experiences. The experience you're having is showing you the way that you're already complete, or at least pointing you to the compelling idea that you can seek all aspects of yourself from within. The thing about being whole is that this necessarily includes the darker shades of your emotions, including your fears, and those moments when you notice you're disgusted with yourself. There's no point blaming others for those feelings -- and the more you claim them as your own, the more you integrate the cast-off parts of yourself, and heal the insults and injuries that create the situation in the first place. Far from making your relationships less fulfilling, this will put you in a position to relate to others as a whole person (which is a lot more fun than thinking you're a fraction of a person). There is confidence that emerges from self-acceptance and self-understanding that you cannot fake and that nothing can substitute for. When you are solid with yourself, you will draw solid and aware people to you -- which I am sure you'll appreciate.

Hello Scorpio -- Eric has written a new description for your sign that you have access to from this link (no password needed).

Sagittarius (Nov. 22 - Dec. 22)
Sagittarius (Nov. 22-Dec. 22) -- I feel like the Sagittarius horoscope has been the Career Advisor as far back as I can remember; I'll keep that short: whatever has happened the past three months has helped you work out the bugs in a plan that will work a lot better debugged. One of the reasons people respect you is because you can admit an error and are aware that there's strength in admitting imperfection. Moving on to the more interesting relationship angle of your solar chart, I see the cosmos offering you an opportunity and a challenge, and in order to embrace them you will need to do your best to stay in the present moment. There are forces that will try to trick you into finding some retreat in nostalgia, or past relationships, or fantasies about what is possible; stick to grounded, tangible reality. Notice when others are lost in the past, which is a way of defending against intimacy that's available right now. You may be surprised to notice how many people fit this description, and how few are willing to see eye-to-eye in the present moment. Yet they exist and if your perception is clear, you will see them. You will see a lot else. Without trying too hard to nudge you into hobbies that might not be your true devotion, what do you think about photography? I don't mean snapshots, which are more about passive observation. I mean creating pictures that express a personal vision of the world that is obviously burning like fire inside of you.

Hello Sagittarius -- Eric has written a new description for your sign that you have access to from this link (no password needed).

Capricorn (Dec. 22- Jan. 20)
Capricorn (Dec. 22-Jan. 20) -- Disease process is about fragmentation, and healing process is about making whole. You can also say that disease process often involves lack of awareness, and that healing process begins with raising awareness. For you in particular (though this works for many), healing starts with the mind: with soothing your mental state. Chaos is not good for you. When your mind competes within itself, or is divided somehow, or when the dialog gets out of hand, the stress can lead to your feeling physically ill. You have one of the most sensitive charts this way and, incidentally, you have to take good care of your lungs. Events of the next two months will teach you not only how you can take better care of yourself, but also demonstrate the direct benefits of doing so. Meanwhile, I suggest you take the time to go over your health history, as well as studying your track record of health-improvement campaigns. Now for the truly useful part: track this against your work history. During which jobs have you felt healthier, and which have come with phases where you were less healthy? Did the relationship involve stress, or some other environmental factor? Do you feel better when you have more or less responsibility? Knowing these things will help you adjust your plans and design your life in a way that is fully supportive of your natural state of being. That natural state is integrity -- and you seem determined to cultivate that in yourself with a deep determination right now. If so, you're on the right track.

Hello Capricorn -- Eric has written a new description for your sign that you have access to from this link (no password needed).

Aquarius (Jan. 20- Feb. 19)
Aquarius (Jan. 20-Feb. 19) -- When you arrive at a crossroads, how do you decide which way to go? Though you're a devoted student of psychology, when it comes to your own self-guidance, intuition is the first and last word. Your mental process can help at times, and get in the way at others. To figure out which is in effect, I suggest you evaluate how you make your decisions. This experience will come in handy when you encounter a significant opportunity or option that is on the way. Understanding a little more about your decision-making process will help you decide what to do, especially if you discover you don't like how you tend to make decisions. Past disappointment gets too many votes; it deserves just one -- knowing what you don't want. That information is worth a lot more when you have a constructive, positive option in mind. Making a decision in the moment usually involves letting go of something in the past. Here's the point where you tend to overthink, without realizing that your thought pattern is covering up an emotional attachment. What you want is to think enough -- just enough. Once you wake up and pay attention, events this month will proceed quickly, and come on with the slight sensation of disorientation. This is evidence that you're letting go of your usual moorings -- that means keep going. You know what you want, and you know what is possible; now for the matter of trusting yourself, which is not as grandiose as it might seem some days.

Hello Aquarius -- Eric has written a new description for your sign that you have access to from this link (no password needed).

Pisces (Feb. 19- March 20)
Pisces (Feb. 19-March 20) -- Some days it seems you need a thicker skin than you have, given the state of the world. Remember that your sensitivity is your most dependable asset. If people don't respect that, it may be inconvenient for you but in truth, it's their problem. Part of that problem is using aggression (active, 'passive' or otherwise) as opposed to intelligence. That's not going to work with you. Your most appropriate response, if transgressed in any way, is to allow others to feel the effects of their own energy. You're sensitive to this as well; sometimes when you refuse to take on something that's being dished out in your direction, you feel like you're doing something to someone -- and this is a key piece of the game you need to master and, in a sense, subvert. You can go a long way to avoid needless confrontation (which includes nearly all of it) but if you smell it in the air, acknowledge that at the first moment. Stay alert to the fact, and lightly step out of the way. There are, however, many more creative expressions of the same astrology -- in particular, Mars opposite Chiron in your sign. In its most positive form, you'll experience this aspect as a point of creative and intellectual contact. You'll be able to tell what's going on from the sensation of either authentic passion or devotion to healing. Still, expect to use your power of refinement and the benefits of age and experience to work with a situation that may seem a bit crude at first, but which may develop beautifully over time.

Hello Pisces -- Eric has written a new description for your sign that you have access to from this link (no password needed).

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