Dear Friend and Reader:
When the Sun enters Aries on March 20, it does so in a conjunction to the asteroid Child. Magnified by the Aries Point, this conjunction is a reminder that we live in what poet Robert Bly has called the Sibling Society: a civilization not just without adults, but lacking in commitment.
For one central point in his book, he quotes Alexander Mitscherlich: “Mass society, with its demand for work without responsibility, creates a gigantic army of rival siblings.”
Most people are not interested in work with responsibility. I mean actual responsibility, where it matters whether one is there or not; or said another way, responsibility for the success or failure of something much larger than oneself. Those who take on such duties are usually interested only in power and advantage. That is not responsibility.
The Sun in astrology is a good stand-in for the archetype of the adult. I know that the terms “adult” and “child” have many different connotations, though when I say adult I mean someone who is capable of and maybe even interested in handling the responsibilities of life, and by child, I mean someone who is not yet mature, and who mainly wants to play (and is not interested in or capable of handling the pressures and challenges that maintain existence).
For a child, someone else is always ultimately responsible for directing the flow of events, but kids take on much in the way of guilt and false responsibility for outcomes. Parent figures (different from adults) have a way of making a kid feel guilty about what is happening. Feeling guilt is not responsibility. It is merely the sense of blame taken on oneself.
Is anyone interested in growing up? Well, that would mean taking on a lot of responsibility.
What Keeps One a Child
Asteroid master Martha Lang-Wescott in her book The Architects of Time writes that Child can represent how one remembers and characterizes being a child, and also what keeps one a child. In the aspect pattern, Sun-Child is cornered. Mostly, this is coming from a conjunction of Ixion (Pluto-like point) and Astraea (an asteroid) in Capricorn.
Ixion, a slow-mover that is creeping across early Capricorn, is about unmitigated cruelty born of amorality (lack of a moral framework, hence, anything goes).
Astraea is describing the damage constant infiltration does to someone’s sense of where they stand with the world; where they end and the world begins. We are so frequently imposed on by the meanness of others that there would seem to be no way out of feeling powerless. This in turn blocks all progress and prevents a sense of closure. We hear about injustice every day, but rarely ever hear of things made right.
Is anyone interested in growing up? Well, that would mean taking on a lot of responsibility. It would mean sizing up the situation for what it is, rather than as the fantasy/horror trip presented via electrical media (mainstream, social and the rest of it).
(Read Martha’s email to me here. Lots about the connection between science and media.)
We do a lot of passing the buck here in Sibling Society. With Nessus and the nodes in a square aspect through the spring, it will be very difficult to do that.
Speaking of Illusions: From Neptune to Nessus (square the nodes)
For much of 2020 and to the present moment, the lunar nodes and Neptune are making a square pattern. That is, the nodes are in Gemini and Sagittarius, and Neptune is in Pisces. The nodes represent the mode of progress in clearing karma and finding one’s true calling.
What is square the nodes is sitting right on them: the point through which progress will be made, or blocked. Neptune is about denial, deception, delusion, drama, drink, drugs and maybe on a good day, inspiration, music and art. (See my article from one year ago.)
Mostly these qualities are consumed by the electrical and digital power tools of our society, and an advertising culture that thrusts everyone into a pretend world of false expectations (and the perfect unblemished happiness promised in pharmaceutical ads). This is an anesthetized state: a state of being without actual feeling and sensitivity.
Neptune evades responsibility (the ability to respond) by investing itself in what is not true. This is easy: there is so much of it. But Neptune also has an odd property in our times: the notion that “if I believe it, then it must be true.” Yet this is putting a little too much false responsibility on oneself. Belief is not knowledge, and nobody knows everything. In fact, many days it seems that nobody knows anything.
Through the month of March, the lunar nodes retrograde deeper into Gemini and Sagittarius, and they will form a square to the third centaur, Nessus. This shifts the emphasis from Neptune being the route or the detour, into Nessus being the point of focus.
Values are more than priorities. They are fundamental principles by which one decides what is right and wrong.
With Whom the Buck Stops
Nessus (a slow-mover with a 122-year orbit) is about confronting the end results of events. It also provides information about how things got to be the way they are, and if you listen carefully, it describes the way through the situation. One thing Nessus is famous for is victim consciousness. Nessus also works with a hazy story of how events unfolded, such that responsibility is evaded.
The thing with Nessus is that eventually, the karmic circle is closed. Melanie Reinhart’s key phrase from Nessus is borrowed from U.S. Pres. Harry Truman, “The Buck Stops Here.” This is a term from poker — it’s about who deals. If the buck stops with you, you either deal or “pass the buck.” We do a lot of passing the buck here in Sibling Society. With Nessus and the nodes in a square aspect through the spring, it will be very difficult to do that. We are going to see many manifestations of the consequences of decisions made under the influence of Neptune square the Nodes.
(Read more about Nessus in this extensive article.)
Nessus is also about revenge, which is exacted through the use of poison. The poison that goes around the centaur myths is always the blood of the Hydra, or many-headed monster. Ultimately through a series of actions that Heracles commences, the blood of the Hydra comes back to kill him (fulfilling the prophesy of Delphi, which predicted he would be “killed by the blood of a dead enemy”).
We are now in times where we are gradually being convinced that nothing matters. And when nothing matters, people will submit to whatever terrorizes them, as there is no value that could possibly supersede it.
Right now there are so many metaphors for that bad blood going around, you can barely focus on them. But they are everywhere, in a time when many people are initiating actions that are sure to have “unforeseen” consequences. There will be many people wondering why they were not warned of neurodegenerative disorders, or systemic inflammation.
We might act like certain facts and questions are merely rumors, or fake news, or disinformation, or that which deserves to be scrubbed from YouTube. However, just because it’s removed from the website of a company in the pharmaceutical business does not mean it’s fake. And that does not mean we evade responsibility for not knowing about it.
Emotional intelligence is more than the “gut response,” which can be about fear. Rather, it is a form of whole-body knowing, and that can be corrupted.
Venus conjunct Nessus: The Value of One’s Values
The nodes square Nessus in late March or early April (depending on whether you use true, or mean). Before that happens, Venus makes a conjunction to Nessus on March 7. This is in a close enough square to the nodes to count for a lot.
Venus represents many things in astrology, though one of its core principles is values. This is one way of saying “what actually matters.” We are now in times, however, where we are gradually being convinced that nothing matters. And when nothing matters, people will submit to whatever terrorizes them, as there is no value that could possibly supersede it.
Values are more than priorities. They are fundamental principles by which one decides what is right and wrong. Venus is also connected directly to the physical body, and the related principle of emotional intelligence (which is a biological level of awareness). Emotional intelligence is more than the “gut response,” which can be about fear. Rather, it is a form of whole-body knowing, and that can be corrupted.
Venus can be adept at the art of compromise, which is the willingness to yield on all nonessential points. Values are corrupted, however, when the essential points are compromised.
On the basic human level, Venus is about all that is good, nourishing, loving and helpful. And now we see this coming under the thrall of Nessus, at a crucial turning point (square the nodes). Venus-Nessus can feel contaminated, unclean and guilty about pleasure.
In this chart, Venus becomes the basis for decision. Someone who feels like they are in some way contagious or tainted is not likely to have their body-knowledge working well enough to guide them. However, anyone who tunes in deeply enough may figure out that such a position leaves them open to manipulation. I see a lot of ads for holistic consciousness go by my desktop — and many of those same people decide that while that was all well and good, now we are going to submit to Big Pharma and be grateful for the opportunity.
In a world of connections, there can be awareness of innate wisdom — which is about tapping into wholeness.
Connecting with Innate Wisdom
Innate wisdom proceeds from a different premise than that of the contagious/contaminated body. The assumption is that the body, in its wisdom, knows how to take care of itself. There is also the premise of wholeness. They are related. And the notion of “not being whole” suggests that there is not innate wisdom, or that it is some kind of a rumor.
Recently, I wrote an article about The Conspiracy of Wholeness and Healing. That night, I got a letter from a healing practitioner out west who explained: in the minds of those who feel fragmented, wholeness is a conspiracy theory. Anything cohesive seems unreal and unrealistic.
Recently, comedian J.P. Sears joked about “the conspiracy theory known as a chronology.” A chronology is a complete accounting of events, where you may see what happened in what order. That could serve to change one’s perceptions.
Last year, I howled at an official statement by the European Union claiming that those who seek to identify patterns in the news are conspiracy theorists!
The upshot here is that many people feel like they, and the world, are fragmented — and thus devoid of any cohesion. In the mind where nothing relates to anything else, everything is fragmented. In a world of connections, there can be awareness of innate wisdom — which is about tapping into wholeness.
To do that, usually, we must work our way through all that is not whole, on the way to something that feels better and is a more accurate perception of existence. This might start with an idea. It might start with making observations. Then you will need to make connections. Ultimately, those will come back to making connections within yourself, and between observations from your own direct experience. That is not about belief. It’s about what you witness and account for. Innate wisdom starts with paying attention.
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Dear Friend and Reader:
Neptune is in your birth sign for the long-haul, and Chiron is in Aries, your sign of self-esteem and self-worth. The challenges of the past few years have given way to a whole new life environment. You are still adapting to this new set of conditions. My 2021 Astrology Studio for Pisces is called Every Decision You Make.
This is a 75-minute professional astrology reading for Pisces Sun, rising and even Moon sign which I plan to release by Friday, Feb. 18.
If you have never experienced an Astrology Studio reading at the time of your birthday, you have a special privilege ahead of you.
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Aries (March 20-April 19) — Before the Sun enters your sign later this month, you have an opportunity to experience the beauty of your inner world. Not everyone knows this exists. At the moment, the only world most people experience is the internet and anything connected to it. Yes, there are a few people in our society who remember forests, but not most. Contact with nature would bring you closer to yourself. An ocean or large body of water comes to mind, though the natural world in any form will do. The feeling you experience with nobody else around, coming face to face with beauty, is a glimpse of your personal and private world. The longer you stay, the better, though you take your inner existence with you everywhere you go. Another approach is to consider food, which is one of the most intimate things about a person. Give yourself frequent experiences of eating exactly what you want, in a setting where you don’t need to justify yourself nor have your choices be subject to discussion. You would be amazed how much approval-seeking surrounds a matter that should be distinctly one’s own business. You may notice a particularly strong emotional charge around food, and all that it’s associated with. You are in an especially good time to adopt the maxim, “Let food be thy medicine.” On March 20, the Sun enters Aries, which is a refreshing moment for you and for the world. Unlike many people, you have considerable freedom of movement, and social options. But those will be limited by fear, and fear is fed by ignorance. You have a responsibility to know your personal truth, which is a matter of self-understanding and making a true effort to understand the facts of the world around you.
Taurus (April 19-May 20) — Debbi Kempton-Smith (author of Secrets from a Stargazer’s Notebook) said that the best sign placement for your ruling planet Venus is Pisces. There, she will be in rare form this month. The New Moon of March 13 takes place in a conjunction with Venus and Neptune, along with the rainbow goddess Iris (a.k.a. Arc Iris). This is a picture of the good life, something to which you probably aspire. It’s also a picture of escapism, a word I’m using in my horoscope for the first time since August 1999, according to our database. The only reason I bring that up is because the public accountability angle of your chart is stronger than it’s been since, well, February 1962, when you were probably very young or not yet born. That is Aquarius. You have Jupiter and Saturn transiting your 10th house. It’s easy to ride on your reputation with this happening, or to think you have the Midas touch. Yet the real calling is to step up boldly to take responsibility for the issues of our day. This is not designed to be easy or convenient. There may not be any direct benefit to you, other than the satisfaction of a job well done, or less, having done your part to make that happen. There are no certainties, and the world and every single local community is facing a crisis that is barely understood or recognized for what it is. You have talent, experience, and other resources, and you are being called. Why you, why now? Call it karma. Call it dharma. Call it your life path. Taurus is an individualistic sign, though more than that, you wear the insignia of an officer, and are being summoned into collective service at a crucial time.
Gemini (May 20-June 21) — Mars will be in your birth sign all month. That may lead you to wonder why it’s worth bothering to go after what you want in life when it’s fraught with so many challenges and often, disappointments. However, the mission and purpose of Mars is about discovering what you want and proving it to yourself, rather than immediate fulfillment. You need to sort through what you don’t value and what you don’t truly desire and then see what you’re left with. This will involve confidence building and learning how to work your way through various forms of inner and outer resistance. Along the way, you’ll have opportunities to connect with people who support you, some in the form of offering teaching and mentorship. But ultimately this is your journey and your quest. It’s easy to say you want something, or to accomplish something. It’s another thing to apply your desire and to persist in the face of challenges. And when you go for what you want, it’s almost inevitable that you will face the basic conditions of existence on the physical plane. Don’t push this too hard. What you need is slow, steady persistence. You are not in a position to accomplish anything especially quickly. However, if you’re paying attention, you will slowly gain clarity around your goals and what you must do to make them real. Be careful about competing with yourself, working against your goals, or splitting your intentions. The thing you have to do is something of the ultimate karma for a Gemini, which is focus your whole self on the objective you want to attain. And this may not be about one thing only, as we all are living multiple lives right now; it’s a set of bylaws that you will need to apply to anything you do.
Cancer (June 21-July 22) — This is an unusual time for you. After a series of eclipses shook you loose from your known reality (mostly in 2018 and 2019), Chiron entered Aries, which is the leadership angle of your chart. Yet the leadership style of Chiron is most unusual: it’s off to the side, or from behind, not at the top of the pyramid. It is a form of spiritual leadership that is enhanced by the impressive energy coming from Pisces right now. The New Moon on the 13th is calling on you to expand your vision, boldly, with the ocean as your metaphor. See as far as your mind’s eye can see, and use your imagination to stretch your concepts further. You may not do all that you imagine, and you may not think it’s possible, though you want to be drawing from a deep pool that you may think of as potential. Dive in, or tap in through what you might think of as your higher power. Then, stay in contact with that part of you, or with your vision, or however you think of it. When the Sun crosses the midheaven angle of your solar chart, you will be called into action, and you may need to proceed quickly. You have the formidable task of being someone who initiates projects and goals rather than merely following along with what has been established in the past. Beginning things requires special talent, special effort and a true calling, and you may find yourself in a position where you have all three. This is not an easy challenge, and you may find your abilities stretched past their limits. So be it. You will still have a good life, and if you are paying attention, you will notice all the help that is around you.
Leo (July 22-Aug. 23) — Have you let go of all the difficulties and challenges you faced last year, and the two years prior? It was all a lot, though you’re in all new territory now. It’s time to fully catch up with yourself and not leave any part of you lingering behind. Use these last few weeks of the solar year to tidy up old business. Get out of commitments that you’re not interested in, and close the book on them. The New Moon on the 13th would be an excellent time to aim for that process, and will give you plenty of time to both state and act on your intentions. When the Sun enters your fellow fire sign Aries on the 20th, you will want to proceed forward without hindrances and unresolved or dangling matters. So make your decisions and act on them. You do not need nostalgia. There may have been positive things about the past, though there is more that you’re ready to move on from. There is only one way to do that, and that is simply to do it. The sooner you start, the sooner you will be able to take care of whatever personal business this entails. There are many factors in your chart indicating that now is the time to clear out old situations and relationships. You have power tools that will help you establish better boundaries, which begin with you being able to say the words, “I want.” They are more important than “I need,” which always must come with some justification. Desire is its own value, not subject to external review. You want what you want, and you must make that known. The exercise here is stating your intentions for your life, and ensuring that you are the only one who makes that declaration.
Virgo (Aug. 23-Sep. 22) — This is an unusual time in your relationships, with so much of the sky oriented in your opposite sign Pisces. The current pattern is likely to bring out the romantic idealist in you. Despite the allure and the temptation, I suggest you take a more practical, mental approach to relating to people. Romance is largely an illusion. Collaboration is real. Healing is real. Community service is real. You have all of these options open to you. You are more likely to meet a suitable friend and partner outside of a romantic context, by which I mean some form of online dating or any dating. This may not fulfill your desire for sweetness and starlight, though that’s generally not a good starting place. And at the moment, it will be difficult to make heads or feet out of anyone who you are not coexisting with in a more serious environment, and one where the expectations are more grounded. There, you will be able to make better observations about who someone is. Do they show up on time? How do they play with others? Are they the same person when you’re alone as they are in a group context? This is the information you need before you can consider a deeper relationship with someone. Many of your relationship experiences in the past have led you to invest yourself fully in someone without really knowing who they are. Yes, there is always some mystery, but we have enough of those these days. The risk you face now is projection: that is, seeing someone for who you think they are rather than who they actually are. What you think or believe does not matter. Only the truth is erotic.
Libra (Sep. 22-Oct. 23) — You might avoid getting overly involved in any drama that emerges at work. It might be difficult, though what you want to be doing is your own style of creative projects. You are heading for a situation where there might be some competition for where you direct your energy. Emotional situations eat creative power. They eat time. So if something seems like it’s heading in the direction of drama, you might take your option and go another way, at least for a while. When this precious month or two is over, you want something to show for your efforts and outpouring of devotion. You have a most unusual opportunity to invest in the creative side of your nature, which has been calling on you to do this for as long as you remember. This calls for rising to a challenge. That means changing some of the patterns of your mind and your use of time such that you structure a place for what you want the most. The challenge here is that under digital conditions, our mental structures and life patterns have become more rigid than ever. We are gradually being convinced to act like robots, and to welcome injections that even the manufacturers say reprogram the immune system. To be creative is to be human. That means being flexible, adaptable and open to change. Mostly that means changing how you think and how you perceive the world. This will come through your relationship to yourself more than to others. The fact that you may face a challenge creating space and time to do what you value the most is revealing of how tight the patterns of your existence have become. Make the effort. You will find the challenge of growth and change to be liberating.
Scorpio (Oct. 23-Nov. 22) — You may wonder what you’re up against — and the answer is, yourself. Your ruling planet Mars is in Gemini, a sign that for you is associated with deep bonding, commitment and exchange. Yet right now it’s a hall of mirrors. Yes, this is a property of consciousness many times. But there is a bold, compelling image of an echo chamber that is dominating your chart for the foreseeable future. So how exactly do you handle this? Gently, and without making assumptions — especially about other people. This is one of those times to consider an idea attributed to Anais Nin: we don’t see things as they are; we see them as we are. Let that be your starting point, and stick with it for a while. Every time you think someone thinks something, or believes something, or has a certain motive, check in with yourself. You will need to be less emotional and more mentally detached to make an assessment, since emotional responses (and people having them) always think they are right. So you’re unlikely to have any objectivity if you proceed from that level. You will need to do something that’s extraordinarily uncharacteristic of people in the 21st century: use your intelligence. That will mean checking with multiple informed viewpoints, observing yourself over time, and consulting with two or three people whose viewpoints you trust (no more; you must concentrate the discussion and not allow your thoughts to be diffused by random, uninformed opinions). And be cautious if you hear too much talking about what you want to do, without you doing it. When the equinox engages fully on March 20, it will be essential that you adopt an all-about-business attitude. So catch your breath, and get ready for action.
Sagittarius (Nov. 22-Dec. 22) — Yours is considered one of the most cosmic and visionary of the signs. Yet it also has a tendency to get stuck in thought patterns that can seem impossible to change. Reorganizing your mind and your perceptions is much easier, if you connect with your need to do so. The ‘stuck thought pattern’ issue is due to the power of the sign Aquarius in your chart, which falls in your 3rd house. This shows a strong tendency to get into mental habits and to stick with them whether they serve you or not. However, your ruling planet Jupiter, plus the mighty Saturn, both in Aquarius, are urging you to get onto a new brainwave. Habits are helpful, until you are enslaved by them. Hanging out with your chosen group is fun, until you find that you’re not learning anything from them. Jupiter is urging you to expand your horizons. Saturn is calling on you to be brutal about what does not work for you, and to look for and see the places where you’re invested in beliefs and rigid concepts that do not reflect reality. By that I mean they may not serve your ability to navigate your environment. This takes flexibility right now, and you can be sure that is a new kind of discipline for you. The challenge with either Jupiter or Saturn in Aquarius is thinking you are right; thinking you know when you do not. That is also true of Mercury in Aquarius, all of which are extant now. You are firmly in “know when you don’t know” territory. We both know you like an adventure, and when you admit that, you are well on your way to beginning one. Knowing when you don’t know is your passport.
Capricorn (Dec. 22-Jan. 20) — You are likely to be feeling some desire for justice and to make things right in the world. This will never happen until people do right by one another personally. Many are granting themselves all kinds of license to treat people however they want, and this is not making the world a better place. However, the problems when they arise are rarely thought of as such. Rather, they are reactions that come from the place of an injured child. That may come up for you this month. First, residue from competition among siblings may arise. If you recognize that, grab it — it will be an easy scenario to work with. Closer to the core is how you may feel that if you act and speak in ways that are true to yourself, you will be rejected by your family. This is a deep fear for many, and a source of anger. It’s also the source of a ‘survivalist’ way of life where suddenly it becomes legitimate to elevate one’s needs over those of others to the point of actual unfairness. Strive for balance. Share what you have and be generous with your spirit (your love, your attention, your intelligence). If others say you’re not being helpful or not doing your part, hear them out. Notice if you’re being argumentative, especially at work. A better world is better in all ways. And we humans on the ground have many areas of influence. However, that only works if you’re listening, and take to heart what you hear. You have it better than most people on the planet and can afford to be more generous, asking nothing in return. That spirit would do well for everyone. It is the essence of true justice.
Aquarius (Jan. 20-Feb. 19) — There is a difference between what is true for you, and what is true generally, or what can be proven. The thing about personal truth is that it’s personal, and for most people does not require evidence. That is a problem, and while everyone needs to raise the bar on what they accept as personally valid, you simply must do this now. As for what is generally true, establishing that is an odyssey, though it begins with the process of identifying and questioning all of your assumptions. And I do mean all, because they may all be wrong. One challenge you have is the exercise of holding multiple viewpoints at once. That means not deciding who is strictly right or wrong for a while, but rather, holding open all of the possibilities. Said another way, standing in the face of the unknown. This is more than most people can bear, so they jump to false conclusions and then pretend such a thing does not exist. But such can be costly now, given the kinds of pressure that society is putting people under. Yet the circumstances demand that you rise wholly to the occasion and become an actual individual who can stand up for yourself. And everything I’ve written leading up to this thought is involved. One error often made through the Aquarius filter is the idea that intelligence is purely mental. It is much more than that; much more than can be emulated by a computer. True intelligence is not an algorithm of any kind. It is a process of observing, feeling, gradually gaining understanding, and keeping the questions in your mind alive. Then you live what you think of as truth, and see if it works for you.
Pisces (Feb. 19-March 20) — Some people are into baseball to cheer for their team. Some are into the game, and will cheer for a fantastic play by the other team. One is about competition. The other is about quality — and that is the thing you want. Your chart is about doing things for their own sake, and doing them well. This is about devotion to beauty, and to purpose, and to your own artistry. You would do well to consider everything you do to be an expression of artistic integrity, which means both beautiful and purposeful. With so many planets in your sign, and your ruling planet Jupiter so well situated, you are no doubt feeling your potential. Yet to engage that, you will need to get physical: build things, go places, conduct experiments, and gain experience with people. It is the “making real” process that has been replaced in our times with downloading an app, or with buying some new piece of technology. The quality of your ideas is your greatest asset, though those exist only in potential until you get into the workshop and start doing things with them. You need to go far enough into the process that you know you can make a mistake — and you would be well served to do that a few times. You want to get it wrong as much as you want to get it right, because those errors are essential to the creative process, and the self-creative process. Remember all the time that you are integrating intellectual integrity and beauty. Keep an eye on how things work and how they look, following the maxim “function precedes form” (or if you prefer, “form follows function”). You are on the brink of something both excellent and relevant. Let it happen.