Sunday, February 11, 2018

Mars-Vesta in Sagittarius Square Neptune-Chiron in Pisces: Keeping the Motivating Flame of Truth Alive

 Photos: Willow

Mars is currently transiting Sagittarius until it reaches more solid ground in the sign of its exaltation, Capricorn, on March 17.

As warrior planet Mars moves through philosophical Sagittarius, we're truth-applying missiles, following the motivational drives of our own truth, ethics, and beliefs. We're seeking the quickest and most direct route (Mars) to greater understanding, meaning, and purpose (Sagittarius), but this path is not simple or clear-cut.

As Mars works its way through Sagittarius, it is retracing the steps of Saturn in Sagittarius (December 2014 - December 2017), which means it is activating/inflaming the themes of the Saturn in Sagittarius square to Neptune in Pisces (in effect late 2015 through 2016) and then the Saturn in Sagittarius square to Chiron in Pisces (in effect late 2016 through 2017).

Many found the years 2016 and 2017 to be highly challenging under these aspects, and we're now going through a (relatively quick) re-cap of the associated themes. 

Mars is in some pretty thorny territory with many quagmire areas in which we could get emotionally or psychically bogged down.    

Mars can have an inflammatory effect, and Mars transiting Sagittarius indicates a time period when people following their own truth may come into frictional contact with other people following an entirely different truth.

Frictions may be particularly acute in the days surrounding these exact squares:

February 13 - Vesta in Sagittarius square Neptune in Pisces at 13 degrees (along with Mercury in Aquarius square stationing Jupiter in Scorpio at 22 degrees)
February 17 - Mars in Sagittarius square Neptune in Pisces at 13 degrees
February 25 - Mars conjunct Vesta (18 degrees Sagittarius) square Venus (18 degrees Pisces)
February 28 - Mercury in Pisces square Mars in Sagittarius at 19 degrees
March 14 - Mars in Sagittarius square Chiron in Pisces at 28 degrees
March 28 - Vesta in Sagittarius square Chiron in Pisces at 28 degrees

We may be moving through some murky confusion about which way to go now. We're stepping into the backwash of some broad collective problems that seem to have no easy solutions. Under the sensitizing, immersive influence of Neptune/Chiron/Pisces, the pain and problems we face (personally and collectively) can seem particularly daunting and intolerable, and we can experience acute points of frustration, followed by depression or despair, about the way forward from here.


Motivation may be dampened somewhat under these Mars-Neptune and Mars-Chiron squares, and we may have to fight to keep our spirits buoyed and to stay on task. We may have to force ourselves to forge on, to stay on track, despite the energetic remembrance of disappointment and futility, hanging around us like stale fumes. 

We're working through some energetic lulls, some points of inertia, and some points where our footing seems to drop out from under us, and this may have us questioning the effectiveness and meaning of our current path.

These aspects are in full effect around Valentine's Day, a day which creates a big, old void of sucking misery at the best of times for a lot of people (honestly, for couples and singles alike). 

This Valentine's Day, we'll be in the Dark of the Moon (emotionally dark/still/complex/karmic) under a Mars-Vesta in Sagittarius square to Neptune in Pisces. All we can really do is laugh at the projected ideal of human romantic love...versus the reality of the conditions we have to work with on Planet Earth. All the non-normatives can do is laugh at a societal ideal of "middle-class coupled-up with mortgage and kids" as the one and only real success story. Luckily, the aspects indicate the ability to apply a transcendent philosophical view as we shift beyond old disappointments and into a stronger Aquarian-era version of Juno Day.

So we're working through a real psychic hangover from the past couple years here, but we also have to stay on our toes so we don't miss any opportunities to put our personal truth and philosophies into immediate action in ways that are meaningful to us and to the world around us. This is what we want with Mars transiting Sagittarius.

We're looking to walk our talk in new ways, and we're searching for just the right openings to let fly with our blazing arrows of truth.

We've worked hard for these blazing arrows throughout the transit of Saturn in Sagittarius. We've worked hard to perfect our aim, our delivery, and the timing of our release. We've made the wise differentiation between "a clear shot" and a muddled or futile effort. We've painstakingly drilled down through layers of artifice, distraction, diversion, rhetoric, and outright lies to come to this pure, distilled truth, ready to light the world on fire in desperately needed ways.

Keeping the motivating flame of truth alive is a strong requirement now, as Mars travels in the zodiac in conjunction to Vesta in Sagittarius. 

Hearth and home asteroid Vesta in Sagittarius indicates that we've invested a great deal of time, energy, and resources into our battle (Mars) for truth, ethics, and freedom (Sagittarius). We've worked hard to keep our spirits up and our bellies a-fire under the challenging end-of-era conditions. 

The influence of Vesta in Sagittarius indicates that we can warm ourselves by this hearth, by the blazing fire of truth and inspiration and cross-cultural understanding that we've diligently kept a-light through harsh and sometimes disheartening times.

We're warming ourselves by the fire of truth, a fire we've tended and invested ourselves in, and we're stoking the flames with humour, broad-mindedness, and an overall "live and let live" spirit. 

The Mars-Vesta conjunction in Sagittarius (February 25) indicates that we have the knowledge we need to get us where we want to go, despite any dampening-despairing effects under the squares to Neptune and Chiron in Pisces.

We're looking to apply our truth in gentle and healing ways (Chiron), but also with the force and precision necessary to get the job done (Mars). Mars indicates a quality of warrior-relentlessness, after all...

Mars and Vesta join forces in Sagittarius to light and lead the way, and the warmth of their co-mingled flames carries us forward through any uncertainty, anxiety, or confusion. Under this Mars-Vesta conjunction in Sagittarius, we're protected by the truth, by what is right, and by the ancient nature-knowledge we hold firmly to our breasts.

Within this somewhat slippery-foggy astrological context, we move to a 27-degree Aquarius New Moon (Happy Year of the Dog!) on February 15 that is also a partial solar eclipse. 

This airy New Moon in late Aquarius adds a cerebral anchor for the following (highly Piscean) 28-day lunar month. We may be propelled into new positions where our principled, ethics-in-action modus operandi is not only accepted or allowed - it's downright necessary!

The February 15th Aquarius New Moon falls in tight conjunction to both communication planet Mercury and soul mate asteroid Juno in Aquarius. The Sun, Moon, Mercury, and Juno in Aquarius will also be in tight sextile aspect to Uranus - in the process of completing its transit of Aries - making Uranus in Aries the dispositor or key influence over the Aquarius New Moon and following lunar cycle. 

This indicates openings into new, community-based connections - opportunities to share ideas and information with others who hold a similar vision as our own. The next chapter in this future vision is unfolding as we move through the lunar cycle, and our rightful place within it may become more apparent. We're getting some clues about our place within the larger group and the changes or advancements we may be helping to catalyze from that position.   

There may be some unexpected social movement or positioning as the lunar cycle unfolds. 

New group dynamics, new social blueprints, and new community developments are coming into being - slowly, gradually - as we move through the Aquarius New Moon eclipse and the following lunar month. In many respects, this has been a long time coming, and we simultaneously slip out of any rigid or crystallized communities/groups that no longer represent who we are.  

There's a spicy, Juno-based edge to all this, too. There's the ideal of community, and then there is the reality of working with a disparate group of people operating under a disparate collection of ideas, values, and methodologies. Working with "community" is often more frictional and difficult than we might like. (Herding cats comes to mind...or knitting yoghurt, as a commenter here once put it.) Finding an effective and satisfactory place within the collective can be challenging. We may come into clashing contact with people who are working for entirely different visions of human community. Illegitimate, hierarchical power dynamics, as well as a subtle demand for follow-the-leader conformity, can often seep in, even while the people involved are paying lip service to egalitarianism, inclusiveness, and diversity... 

So our Juno in Aquarius soul mates may well be the others who know this mixed bag around the concept of "community" and who desire to outsmart old pitfalls there. 

The Aquarius New Moon falls in frictional square aspect to Jupiter, stationing retrograde at 22/23 degrees Scorpio (March 8), and this adds a further element of volatility as far as teeth-gnashing subtext and suppressed truth/emotion.

A little angsty, to say the least...

Nonetheless, we hold our cerebral Aquarian anchor, our core future vision, for dear life as we move through the Aquarius New Moon doorway and the personal planets rapidly shift into Pisces. (Venus entered Pisces February 10; Mercury on February 17; the Sun on February 18)

As we move through the icy-fresh Aquarian lunar cycle February 15 to March 17 with a Pisces stellium (Venus, Sun, Mercury, Neptune, Chiron), things become less concrete, less rational, less constructed. Our faith (or at least, our sense of surrender) has to carry us forward from here. 

Coming through the Aquarius New Moon eclipse, we hold the vision. We see where we would like to go and in what direction we would like to lead humanity, as a whole. But how it's going to happen, how it takes concrete shape, how we're going to be employed in service of that vision - that's up in the air. 

This makes for a potentially uncertain time, especially when we (temporarily) lose sight of our direction and the dramatic progress we've made up to this point. A common Neptune/Pisces theme.

We also have the transcendent quality of Pisces to work with here, however, allowing us to come to ultimate truth that can be agreed upon even by those of differing perspectives. We can work our way into "universal truths" under these aspects, and this can have a greatly healing effect, particularly in societies that have been frayed and divided by identity politics throughout the transit of Uranus in Aries. 

Mars enters the sign of its exaltation, Capricorn, on March 17, just as we experience a 26-degree Pisces New Moon conjunct Chiron. Mars then forms a conjunction to Saturn (exact at 8 degrees on April 2). This indicates: solid steps, concrete movement, and a strong desire for achievement, status, and recognition, particularly in career and in the public realm. 

Mars is very strong in Capricorn, and this more solid positioning will likely come as a relief after navigating the watery and undefined realms of Mars square Neptune and Mars square Chiron in Pisces.


You can read more about the exciting movement of Mars in 2018 in this article: 

 

Wednesday, February 7, 2018

21 Questions for a 21st Century Divinatory Artist

I had the pleasure of meeting Yerevan Saraswati during the Venus Transit of 2012 when I was in California. (I almost never leave Canada, so it was a very out-of-the-ordinary Venus Transit-y trip!) The Venus Transit was a Venus retrograde through Gemini in May/June 2012 when Venus was very tightly aligned with the Sun and Earth, making it visible as it traveled across the face of the Sun. 

Astrological details aside, it was a powerful time for social connections and networking, and I'm glad my colleague-friendship with Yerevan has continued. 

Yerevan and I did a readings exchange in 2016, and I received a terrific reading from her. It was wonderfully insightful and thorough. She skillfully drew together many pertinent points, and the reading helped me considerably with perspective. 

I listened to the reading again at the beginning of this year, and it was even better this time around. Good readings generally improve with age, and the reading she did for me is certainly doing that!

Yerevan's style is very interesting because she uses multiple tools to create her insightful and detailed readings. She's a multi-disciplinary reader, skilled with astrology, tarot, Kaballah, numerology, playing cards, and others. The combination of multiple modalities makes for an interesting and refreshing reading. 

You can find Yerevan's website here: Readings By Yerevan

She has also agreed to do my little 21 Questions questionnaire! What a good sport. 


21 Questions for a 21st Century Divinatory Artist 

1. How  and when did the divinatory arts first come into your life? 

I was 14 when I received a palm reading from my great-aunt Florence who lived in Hollywood and did readings for a lot of famous people. She was also an astrologer who wrote a regular column in the National Enquirer *snicker*. I had only met her once before as a young child. This time she saw my interest in the occult and greatly encouraged me to continue my studies and research. Despite her suggestion that I stick to only using playing cards for card divination, at age 15 I bought my first Tarot deck.


2. How did you first start doing readings for people?

I did a few little Tarot readings for school mates during high school years and then stopped. I picked up the cards again around age 20, and began an in depth study of astrology which I had actually been quite skeptical about previously. I had a lot of time on my hands, being bed-ridden due to autoimmune illness. Doing distance readings (over the phone or internet) in my early twenties eventually led to me getting a position as a reader at a metaphysical gift shop.

3. How would you describe your particular style as a professional reader? 

Some of what I do can be likened to life coaching and counseling. A lot of what comes through in my readings is "beyond me".  When people ask "How did you know all that?" I laugh and say, "hell if I know!" I also tend to become somewhat of a comedian during readings with those who are particularly comfortable in my presence. Things get pretty animated at times because I know how tough life can be and how important laughter can be.

4. How do you think your background and the physical location in which you live colour your practice or your outlook as a professional reader?

Doing readings was never something my church-going parents encouraged me to do as a child. I never dreamt this is how I'd wind up...but I did have a scary premonition about my life at age 5. A couple of relatives and religious people had their eyes on me in a worried way in those days. They tried to warn my parents of the dangers of what I might become. They knew that my great-grandmothers on my father's side were into astrology and the occult and that such proclivities often skip a generation. Well, they were right.

Both of my parents accept and support what I do and who I am now. They got divorced when I was 7 and by the time I was a teenager, the church was becoming less of an influence in their own lives.

As for physical location, the Bay Area is a huge melting pot which has its pros and cons. It has allowed me to easily be and express who I am and what I do as a professional reader. I've gained the respect of many interesting, supportive and wonderful people, for which I am thankful. I've also been criticized, curtailed and marginalized in general ever since kindergarten. That has definitely played a part in shaping my character and stimulating my abilities.  

5. Were family members into similar practices?

My great-grandmother (great-aunt Florence's mother) who was an astrologer passed on before I was born. I've heard lots of stories about her - she was a force to be reckoned with.  As a teenager she escaped the Armenian genocide. The horrors she witnessed haunted her for the rest of her life but she was a lively character nonetheless. She practiced alternative healing before it was popular. Seems like I have a lot of her traits. Also, my great-grandmother on my mother's side did all her gardening by the moon's phases.

6. What is your favourite tarot deck? 

I go through phases of preferring certain decks over others, so it's hard to choose an absolute favourite. For the sake of simplicity I like the Rider Waite deck or slight variations thereof. So many decks are really cool to look at and fun to use but the imagery has nothing to do with the original symbolism of the cards. 

7. What is it about this deck that you like?

The Waite deck is pretty clear and to the point. It's probably the best one to use when first learning what the cards mean.

8. If you had to choose one tarot card that best represents your life, what would it be and why?

I'd have to say the Priestess.  The reason would be that my life has been devoted to occult and spiritual pursuits, often at the expense of my ego which has often isolated me to some bed, place or situation away from the crowd. In some ways I have been overly "yin" (feminine) most of my life, acutely aware of and receptive to the nuances and vibrations of things. I've been changing that overly yin thing by pumping iron at the gym several times a week.

The Priestess sits between the forces of Light and Darkness represented by the two pillars of Solomon's temple. I've often found myself slammed into situations that forced me to mediate between diametrically opposed energies . She holds a book on her lap which represents esoteric knowledge. Books have often been my best of friends.

9. What is one thing you wish more people understood about the divinatory arts or people who practice them professionally?

It's not just about "fortune telling". Divination doesn't depend upon a belief system - it's a matter of interpretation.  Many readers  have the capacity to help people work through some very serious shit and that deserves a lot more respect and credibility than readers are generally given or shown.

10. What advice would you give people who are just starting out in this field?

Have respect for the tools and the knowledge. Playing with the divinatory arts haphazardly can be like playing with fire. The more sincerity one brings to these arts the more that will be gained in the long run. Don't get obsessed by asking the same questions over and over again - that is probably the #1 self-defeating action many of us have taken in the beginning , as Tarot readers in particular: "Uh, I don't like the looks of that.  So let me pick another card..." and so on. Don't jump to conclusions, good or bad, but sit with an image awhile. The answers will become more and more clear over time as you recognize patterns and learn how to interpret them, and more importantly, how to deal with them.

11. What is your favourite meal?

I love a hearty, steaming bowl of soup with lots of medicinal herbs and flavorful spices in it. 

12. What are three of your favourite books?

Behaving As If The God In All Life Mattered by Machaelle Small Wright, The Rainbow Book by Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco, The Secret Teachings of All Ages by Manly P. Hall

13. What are three of your favourite films?
 
Fearless, The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus, Lord of the Rings

14. What are three of your favourite TV shows?

I Love Lucy was my favourite sit-com as a kid and still makes me laugh. For awhile I was really into Ancient Aliens. I fell in "love" with Number Six of The Prisoner - an epic series from the late 60s that I learned about by listening to Michael Tsarion, Adam Burkhart, and David Whitehead (Unslaved podcast). 

15. Who are three of your favourite musical artists?

Hard to answer because I love so much music and the list of favourite artists keeps growing! For now I'll say Loreena McKennit, Gary Numan, and Tool (the band). My ipod on shuffle would probably be confounding for most people...mellow grooves followed randomly by math metal or opera.

 16. What do you like to do in your spare time?

Hike in the woods or beach, play guitar, read books, listen to educational podcasts, chant, bellydance, kick-boxing, putter around in the kitchen,  gardening, arts & crafts, meditate.

17. What is one thing that you find nearly intolerable about life on Planet Earth?

There's so much that is intolerable about life on this planet, but the limitations and lack imposed upon humanity and all sentient beings by the monetary system is something that I have long found nearly intolerable.

By hidden design, we are paying for our own poison and demise. Things are set up so that we spend a lot of our hard earned money on things we don't even need or want, worse yet things that are harmful to us, then get taxed for it. The food's poisoned, the air's poisoned, the clothing is poisoned, with plastic and robots now replacing craftsmanship and people - and we are paying for all of it. Animals are imprisoned and tortured and so many of us unwittingly pay for that too. We're given medicine that will make us even sicker than before it was taken.  And we pay for it. Burial space for dead bodies is paid for royally. Unbeknownst to them, millions of people are funding their own miserable premature deaths. 

Money itself may not be the problem but how it's being used is. That being said, I won't turn money down. As long as it's necessary I will work for it, with it and let it work for me. It's part of the game here.

18. Where is your favourite place on Earth that you’ve been to so far?

Ireland! Going there in 2017 was a long-held wish come true. I intend to return someday. 

19. Where is one place you hope to travel to in the future?

Armenia to explore my heritage and some of the ancient sites in that land.

20. If you could have dinner with three other people in the divinatory arts, living or dead, whom would they be? 

My great-grandmother Anahid, Edgar Cayce (though he was more of spiritual reader), Olney Richmond.
 
21. What is one thing people may be surprised to learn about you?

It seems like the older I get, the more I shock people because they tend to see me as physically small and soft-spoken. Then I open my mouth or start typing out my contrary thoughts on social media (generally on my own pages). How dare I! I'm not the delicate flower I used to be which irks a few folks. At this point, some may be surprised to know that I actually care deeply about sentient beings. I have a lot of love to share with the world, but it doesn't come across that way to people who prefer political correctness over honesty.

Thank-you for your time!

Thank You, Willow, for inviting me here! You rock!

Saturday, February 3, 2018

Stop Bayer-Monsanto's Crimes Against Humanity, Animals, and the Environment!

The 66-billion dollar merger of Bayer and Monsanto, two of the most evil corporations in the world, each with extensive blood on its hands, will reportedly go forward as planned, closing in early 2018, despite what many see as a clear violation of anti-monopoly/anti-trust laws.

The unholy union between pharmaceuticals, chemicals, and GMO (genetically modified organism)-giant Bayer with chemicals and GMO-giant Monsanto will solidify as Saturn and Pluto come together in conjunction in Capricorn. The Saturn-Pluto conjunction is in effect from 2019 through 2020 and will be exact at 22 degrees Capricorn on January 12, 2020.

We can see these corporations positioning themselves, preparing to use the energy of the merger - under these hardcore astrological markers - to advance their nefarious operations. 

If approved, the merger would create the largest chemical pesticide/herbicide and GMO corporation in the world. The merger would come together under transiting Jupiter in Scorpio, indicating a theme of large (Jupiter) mergers (Scorpio) that involve great complexity along with (in this case) a sinister underbelly. The power dynamics and detrimental practises (Scorpio) of these corporations are being exposed under the spotlight-scrutiny of Jupiter transiting Scorpio. 

Despite flatlining sales and millions of people around the world vehemently and vocally opposing its chemical-ridden, genetic modification of the food supply, Monsanto has said that it "expects to accelerate the growth of products it offers to farmers" via the merger with Bayer.

"The synergy coming from the merger is expected to contribute significantly to Monsanto's overall sales, which for the past two quarters have been flat compared to analogous quarters a year prior." (Source: "Monsanto Merger with Bayer Progresses" by Alberto Abaterusso)

Here we see a method that keeps many a criminal corporation in business - the "synergistic merger" with another criminal corporation. The planned merger of Bayer with Monsanto follows other recent mega-mergers in the GMO and chemicals game - Dow and DuPont joined forces to form DowDuPont in 2015, and ChemChina merged with Syngenta in 2016.

Despite the fact that they are losing - badly - in the court of public opinion, Bayer and Monsanto are using the energy of the Saturn-Pluto conjunction in Capricorn to join forces in an attempt to dominate and control the global seed/food and chemical supply.

In a fit of PR-spin hilarity, Bayer's CEO has said that Monsanto's bad reputation poses a  'major challenge' as the merger proceeds.  

"'Monsanto’s image does of course represent a major challenge for us, and it’s not an aspect I wish to play down,' Werner Baumann told shareholders at Bayer’s annual general meeting." 

The general meeting where Baumann lamented the bad rep of its new bedfellow occurred on April 28, 2017 under stationing Pluto in Capricorn, amidst major protest from those opposed to Bayer's own practises, as well as the "merger from hell" with Monsanto.

Article from April 13, 2017: Pluto Stationing Retrograde in Capricorn: From Millions Against Monsanto to Billions Against Bayer

YouTube video: Billions Against Bayer-Monsanto April 28, 2017 and Continued Recovery From Bayer's Antibiotic Cipro
 
The hilarious part, of course, is that Bayer's crimes against humanity easily match - and likely top - Monsanto's.

From its production of chlorine gases for use in the trenches of World War I to its Nazi roots experimenting on people in concentration camps, Bayer Corporation has caused the murder and injury of millions upon millions of people in its quest for profit and market domination, and that practise continues to this day. 

Human lives and well-being mean literally nothing to Bayer Corporation in the face of cold, hard cash flow.

In recent decades, Bayer has knowingly allowed the murder and debilitation of millions of people by leaving its dangerous new wave pharmaceuticals on the market without adequate warning or restriction. For decades, Bayer's executives and Board of Directors have ignored the cries, screams, and begging of its victims, describing horrific long-term and sometimes permanent side effects caused by its drugs.

Bayer Corporation has promoted and advertised and PR-ed its products to death, pouring billions of dollars into its marketing machine. Bayer has "pushed its brand" to the point that its dangerous drugs have been widely prescribed by brainwashed physicians in place of much safer alternatives, already well-established on the market. 

Over the course of its illustrious existence, Bayer Corporation has caused and knowingly allowed the deaths of hundreds of thousands of people. It has caused and knowingly allowed the debilitation and disabling of millions. There are millions of people in a state of chronic pain and suffering today because of the intentional criminal misdeeds of Bayer Corporation. The people suffering are both direct victims of Bayer and the loved ones of Bayer's victims.

If an individual had caused this much pain and suffering to others, he or she would most certainly be locked up for life and then bankrupted paying restitution to the victims and families of victims. 

So Bayer has the blood of hundreds of thousands of people on its hands. Let that sink in for a moment. Bayer has attacked and assaulted millions of people with its dangerous pharmaceuticals. It has pushed for market domination with drugs that should have been severely limited in their prescription and usage, if they even should have been allowed on the market at all.

It's like author Chuck Palahniuk told us in his 1996 novel Fight Club (which was then turned into a fabulous 1999 film that had a pretty profound effect on me):

If the class action lawsuits from a faulty or deadly product will cost a corporation less than the cost of recalling the product, the corporation does not do the recall.

In other words, the corporation knowingly keeps a faulty or dangerous product on the market and continues selling it with the knowledge that people will be killed, maimed, injured, or debilitated by that product.

In the case of Fight Club, the character was describing the corporate policies of vehicle manufacturers, but this policy has been adopted by most large corporations as we teeter at the brink of planetary destruction under the rule of a Pluto in Capricorn-era Corporatocracy -Run-Amok.

It's a common story these days in most corporate industries, but it never gets any less chilling when you put it down in black-and-white.

The truth is, there is no real purpose for many of Bayer's drugs, other than to be hyped-up, flash-in-the-pans that make Bayer billions in profit before the inevitable Black Box warnings, class action lawsuits, and finally, governmental restrictions (which should have been there in the first place, before the drugs were even let onto the market) catch up to it, forcing the drug's limitation or discontinuation.

The fluoroquinolone antibiotic that poisoned me eight years ago, Ciprofloxacin, was originally manufactured in 1987.

That's 30 years of people screaming about the side effects.

That's 30 years of people reporting these reactions to authorities and physicians and having nothing done about it.

That's 30 years of death, 30 years of chronic pain, 30 years of chronic debilitation caused by these drugs, most often unnecessarily prescribed.

It was in just 2016, with almost 30 years of unheeded cries, ignored pain, and denied deaths in their wake, that the labels on fluoroquinolone antibiotics were finally, finally changed by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in the United States and Health Canada in Canada. The labels now state what their victims know all too well - that fluoroquinolones should never be prescribed as first-line antibiotics for minor infections due to the severe potential side effects, which can be permanent.

But these drugs have been prescribed just like that - as first-line antibiotics for minor infections - for more than 30 years now, and that practise continues to this day despite the strengthened warnings. 

Just before these long-overdue warnings were placed on the drugs, they were the most widely-prescribed antibiotics in the world. Twenty-six million Americans were being prescribed fluoroquinolone antibiotics every year, most for minor infections. 

Independent researchers combed the FDA’s data over the course of 10 years. They found 80,000 adverse drug reactions possibly associated with Levaquin and generic levofloxacin, including 1,000 deaths. For Cipro and generic ciprofloxacin, the total was 79,000 adverse events including 1,700 deaths. (Source: "Canada Expands Fluoroquinolone Warning" by Michelle Llamas)

Since only an estimated 10% of adverse drug reactions are reported to authorities (and that's a high estimate), this means that in a 10-year span, Cipro has most likely caused the deaths of almost 20,000 people and the pain, injury, or debilitation of almost a million.

If you then consider that Cipro has been on the market for 30 years, not 10 years, those deaths could be as high as 60,000 people, and the injuries could be nearing three million.

Cipro is just one of many brands of fluoroquinolone antibiotic, so we can estimate that the deaths caused by the reckless manufacturing, promotion, and prescription of fluoroquinolone antibiotics in general has caused hundreds of thousands of fatalities (including suicides) and millions of injuries, many permanent.


Just a sampling of other deadly/debilitating drugs Bayer has left on the market without warning to reap maximum cash: 

- Yaz/Yasmin birth control pills (still on the market)

This is another Bayer drug, more dangerous than older versions of the pill, that was advertised and promoted and pushed to the point of market domination. Released in 2006, it is currently the best-selling birth control pill in the United States. Yaz (sold as Yasmin in Canada) has caused organ damage, stroke, heart attack, liver tumours, gallbladder disease, blood clots, inflammatory bowel disease, and other severe health damage in women who took it. Over 20,000 lawsuits have been filed in the U.S. alone, and only very particular cases make it to the lawsuit stage. This means there are likely hundreds of thousands of people with severe health damage because of Yaz/Yasmin and thousands dead.

- Essure birth control coils (still on the market)

Metal Essure birth control coils were designed to be implanted in the Fallopian tubes to inhibit pregnancy. (Very creepy.) The coils quickly caused health damage in women, including excessive pain and bleeding, headaches, fatigue, coil migration and perforation of organs, severe nickel allergy reactions, ectopic pregnancies, and deaths. Many women had to have hysterectomies in order to remove the coils.

"Between November 2002 and May 2015, more than 5,000 adverse event reports involving Essure complications were reported to federal regulators."

Again, since a high-end estimate is that only 10% of adverse reactions are reported to bureaucratic channels, there are most likely tens of thousands of women with devastated health because of this dangerous birth control method that Bayer has knowingly left on the market to reap destruction on women's bodies and health for its own profit.

- Trasylol bleeding inhibitor 

This bleeding inhibitor drug was kept on the market for 14 years, heavily marketed by Bayer (as usual) to dominate the market. At its peak, Trasylol was being used in one-third of all cardiac bypass operations in the United States. ( Source: "One Thousand Lives a Month" by Scott Pelley)

As early as 2006, a study showed widespread deaths associated with the use of Trasylol. Yet it took two more years, until 2008, for the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to take the drug off the market. (By then, of course, Bayer had already made its heaps of cash.) 

One researcher estimates that Trasylol was contributing to the deaths of 1,000 people per month at its peak usage. So in that two-year period alone between 2006 and 2008, Trasylol killed an estimated 22,000 people, all while Bayer and the FDA were aware of the problems. 

Bayer, of course, would have been (or at the very least, should have been) aware of the problems much earlier. Over the course of its 14-year run, the drug likely caused the deaths of more than a hundred thousand people, all while Bayer kept the pedal to the metal as far as promoting the drug in an attempt at market domination.  

- Xarelto blood thinner (still on the market)

This is another case of sheer insanity in the pharmaceuticals industry and in the criminally-negligent governmental regulatory agencies. Bayer's blood thinning drug Xarelto was released in 2011 as a replacement for Warfarin, an already well-established blood thinner. Unlike Warfarin, however, there is no antidote for Xarelto to stop people from excessively bleeding. Despite this, Bayer (and evil counterpart Johnson&Johnson, "The Baby Company!") have continued to aggressively market the drug. Thousands of people have died from excessive bleeding/hemorrhaging related to Xarelto and tens or hundreds of thousands have been left with serious health damage.  

"Some estimates suggest that by 2018, Xarelto may be among the top 20 best selling drugs in the world, with sales expected to reach $3.7 billion. 

Reports suggest that as use of the drug continues to increase, more and more people are suffering severe hemorrhages and bleeding events from side effects of Xarelto. In many cases, doctors are unable to control this bleeding, which has left thousands of users with severe and often fatal injuries."

- Fluoroquinolone antibiotics Cipro and Avelox (still on the market)


As extensively covered on this blog, Bayer's fluoroquinolone antibiotics Cipro and Avelox have killed tens of thousands of people and have permanently debilitated more than a million. I'm one of these people, one of these statistics.   

Bayer is facing class action lawsuits from the victims and the loved ones of victims of all these drugs (and more), but we're back to that formula described to us in Fight Club

Bayer pays out billions of dollars in class action lawsuits, but it makes hundreds of billions in profit selling these dirty drugs.

So Bayer will knowingly leave these drugs on the market (with lax governmental regulatory agencies in their back pockets). It will pour billions of dollars into advertising, creating buzz for their unnecessary drugs until the brand names are seared into the brains of physicians and pharmacists and they are prescribed instead of the older, safer, tried-and-true alternatives. Bayer will continue to rake in the profits for knowingly allowing the death, pain, and debilitation of millions of precious human beings.

I'm not sure how the Bayer executives and Board of Directors are still walking free...

But this is the case with hundreds of thousands of corporate criminals, committing heinous crimes against humanity, against animals, and against the ecosystem of the planet, in general.

In late January 2018, it was announced that New York state, along with hundreds of towns and cities, was suing Purdue Pharma, makers of OxyContin, the most popular opioid painkiller in the world. The lawsuits claim that Purdue recklessly produced and distributed opioids, flooding the market with the horrifically addictive drugs without adequate warning or restriction. Opioids like OxyContin are causing an epidemic of addiction and overdose deaths in the United States and beyond.

In the same month, it was announced that three Indian bands in North and South Dakota are suing Purdue along with many other opioid manufacturers, claiming the addiction risks related to the drugs were concealed by manufacturers. Opioids have wreaked havoc in many native communities.

They have also wreaked havoc in the U.S. state of Kentucky, which is suing McKesson Corp. for unfair and deceptive business practises. The State of Kentucky says McKesson has flooded rural counties with opioids since 2010.

As sick as it is, lawsuits are almost always required to force change with corporate criminals such as these and with the "looking-the-other-way" governmental regulatory agencies. But many, many people will continue to be injured and killed as these cases make their snail's-pace way through the legal system...

Don't get me wrong - genetic modification of the seed and food supply is horrendous. I've done extensive anti-GMO and anti-glyphosate work for many years now, particularly around Monsanto's GM alfalfa

But poisoning our food and poisoning our medicine are two sides of the same coin.

In order to create the public awareness and momentum needed for a force of effective global resistance to Bayer-Monsanto, we must open the discourse to include all the nefarious activities and products of these corporations, bringing activists and concerned people together in common cause.

The people need a mega-merger of our own under Saturn-Pluto in Capricorn with transiting Jupiter in Scorpio: anti-GMO and chemical herbicide/pesticide activists + pharmaceuticals vigilance activists + anti-monopoly activists + anyone at all concerned about the practises of corporate criminals such as these. 


Stop Bayer-Monsanto! From Millions Against Monsanto to Billions Against Bayer

 

Boycott all Bayer and Monsanto products! 

 

 

Sunday, January 28, 2018

The Anti-Hype Full Moon Report

The Taurus Full Moon at perigee November 14, 2016: the closest the Moon has been to Earth since 1948 (people were also peeing themselves over that one...)
Photos: Willow's Mama

Media, scientists, astronomers, and astrologers seem to be making a huge deal about the upcoming Full Moon at 11 degrees Leo on January 31, calling it a "SuperBlueBloodMoon" (Christ.) and creating all sorts of hyped-up woo-woo around it.

"Once-in-a-lifetime celestial event"

"First in 150 years"

A "super-duper-exciting-plus-sprinkles phenomenon"

The Full Moon at 11 degrees Leo (opposite Aquarius Sun) on January 31 falls at perigee, meaning the Moon will be at the closest point to Earth in its orbit. Because of this, the Moon will appear larger than usual in the night's sky. In astrological terms, this is a Full Moon opposite Black Moon Lilith, the symbol for the lunar apogee. This Leo Full Moon is also a total lunar eclipse, and it is the second Full Moon in the calendar month, referred to as a "Blue Moon."

In reality, though, this is not a super huge deal. In reality, this is pretty much just media diversion doing what media diversion does - focusing on a single, trumped-up (pardon the term) celestial event and manufacturing a bunch of artificially-heightened energy and buzz around it.

I try to neutralize this hyped-up energy because it's actually dangerous.

It's known that "the elite" have used astrology for millenia to plan their events, and this practise continues to this day. War manoeuvres are one area where it's quite obvious that astrology is being utilized.

Two major recent "wars" initiated by the United States/NATO - the unjustified invasion of Iraq in March 2003 and the unjustified bombing of Libya in March 2011 - were timed to Uranus ingresses around March equinox. We have another Uranus ingress around March equinox in the near future - March 2019 when Uranus re-enters Taurus after a retrograde period. If the pattern continues, we can expect more warmongering hell to be unleashed at that time. Let's hope we can break the pattern. The symbolism of Uranus (rebellion, revolution, sudden changes, upheaval) indicates that we can.

The real deal is, war maneouvres have gone undercover in many cases. We are being attacked on multiple levels that are not even being recognized by the mass public. (Unexpected financial attacks or attacks to the financial systems/currencies are one possible theme for Uranus transiting Taurus.)

I would suggest that the timing and energy of the last hugely over-hyped eclipse in Leo - a New Moon total solar eclipse on August 21, 2017 - was used to unleash extreme weather warfare in the form of Hurricanes Harvey and Irma, followed by a destructive earthquake. 

From September 3, 2017: Hurricane Harvey, the Total Solar Eclipse, and This Era of Unnatural Disaster 

Any time a subject achieves across-the-board mainstream media saturation (or even partial mainstream media saturation), it is being used in some way. It is shaping and manufacturing public opinion, directing people's gaze to a certain, narrow subject - and most likely away from other more pertinent subjects.

This way of reporting lacks context. Without understanding context, we are at the mercy of a media that creates Event Bubble after Event Bubble, never showing us the broader picture or filling in the blanks as far as how it all fits together. We see situations as existing in a vacuum, as randomly-occurring and isolated events.

So we have to look at the hype surrounding this Leo Full Moon eclipse at perigee (as well as all similar celestial events) for what it is: artificial, unnecessary, and potentially dangerous as we have a "look over there!" diversionary scenario unfolding in the general public - a prime opening for the powers-that-be to misuse celestial energy and slip some nastiness by.

It's also really exhausting to be this artificially jacked-up about anything, and I believe this is another reason certain subjects like this Full Moon are woo-wooed to death. Our minds and our energy are being hijacked, burning us out on it all.

Here's the reality-checking astrological context on this upcoming Full Moon total lunar eclipse in Leo: 

We regularly experience Full Moons at perigee. Again, "perigee" means that the Moon is at the closest distance it comes to Earth in its orbit. The term "SuperMoon" has unfortunately caught on for a Full Moon at perigee (which sounds as if they're trying to supersize the Moon a la McDonald's marketing), but I would suggest this is part of the hype machine. Three or four Full Moons each year can be classified as at perigee, falling in succession. The Cancer Full Moon on January 1, 2018 was also at perigee and so was the Gemini Full Moon on December 3, 2017. We experienced another uber-hyped Full Moon at perigee on November 14, 2016 at 22 degrees Taurus (pictured above), which was "the closest the Moon has been to Earth since 1948!!!!!" That Full Moon was flanked by two other Full Moons at perigee - on October 16 and December 14, 2016. We'll experience another set of Full Moons at perigee January 21, February 19, and March 21, 2019. The March 21, 2019 Full Moon at perigee at 0 degrees Libra (cardinal point) marks equinox and also Uranus re-entering Taurus. This indicates conditions that have that extra special occulty goodness the powers-that-be so often use to time war manoeuvres/attacks and other "random" events.

We experience eclipses every six months. Eclipses are just very precisely-aligned New and Full Moons. We experience a New Moon and a Full Moon every month. About every six months, the Sun, Moon, and Earth align more precisely than usual, and we experience New and Full Moon eclipses. A New Moon occurs when the Moon is passing between the Sun and Earth (Earth-Moon-Sun). During a New Moon solar eclipse, it appears, from our vantage point on Earth, that the Moon has blocked out the light of the Sun. A Full Moon occurs when the Moon is opposite the Sun in its orbit (Earth-Sun-Moon). During a Full Moon lunar eclipse, the Earth casts a shadow on the Moon, blocking its light. We experience a pair of eclipses - a New Moon solar eclipse and a Full Moon lunar eclipse - about every six months, two weeks apart from each other. Sometimes, we have a triple eclipse season with an extra solar or lunar eclipse. Most eclipses are partial. Total eclipses are more uncommon, but again, not rare. We often experience two total lunar eclipses in a calendar year.

Full Moons at perigee that are also total eclipses are uncommon but not extremely rare. The upcoming Full Moon total lunar eclipse at perigee occurs on January 31, 2018 at 11 degrees Leo. The last one experienced prior to that was September 28, 2015 at 4 degrees Aries. Future Full Moon total lunar eclipses at perigee will be experienced on May 26, 2021 at 5 degrees Sagittarius and on October 8, 2033 at 15 degrees Aries. Historically, these events also occurred in 1982, 1964, 1946, 1928, and 1910.

A Blue Moon is not really a big, hairy deal. The term "Blue Moon" refers to the second Full Moon in a calendar month. Depending on how much stock you put in the Gregorian calendar, this is not really all that significant. Blue Moons are not rare. We will experience other Blue Moons on: March 31, 2018; October 31, 2020; August 31, 2023; May 31, 2026; December 31, 2028; September 30, 2031; July 31, 2034; January 31, 2037; and so on. You can see - if a month has 31 days, it's not uncommon for two Full Moons to fall in that calendar month. We can also experience two New Moons in a calendar month (generally much less hyped), and the second New Moon is referred to as a Black Moon. The last Black Moon we experienced was October 30, 2016 at 7 degrees Scorpio, and the next Black Moon we will experience is August 30, 2019 at 6 degrees Virgo. (Disclaimer: some people use the terms Blue Moon and Black Moon to refer to the fourth Full or New Moon in a three-month season.)

So this Leo Full Moon total lunar eclipse at perigee, our second Full Moon in January 2018, is certainly significant and noteworthy. It is a particularly beautiful celestial event in our night's sky. The questions are whether it is hype-worthy (is anything ever really hype-worthy?) and why there is so much hype generated around single astrological/astronomical events such as these.

This Leo Full Moon conjunct the North Node of the Moon indicates a heart-directed culmination point - but one that requires that we unravel and deconstruct the machinations of the Kings and Queens (Leo) holding illegitimate positions of hierarchical power on our planet. The horrific events surrounding the Leo New Moon total solar eclipse in August 2017 would be a prime place to direct our gazes...

Eclipses indicate the potential for powerful backdrop changes with ripple effects extending for at least six months. As the Moon grows big and full in royal Leo, there are many illegitimate Kings and Queens of all stripes ready to be toppled from their thrones. 

Enjoy this beautiful and magical Full Moon in heart-centred Leo. Feel the love under these lunar rays. But do so with your feet planted on terra firma. It's better that way. 

Sunday, January 21, 2018

Uranian Agitation and Conscience-Driven Breaks in Protocol: the Venus and Mars Retrogrades of 2018




"Uranian Agitation and Conscience-Driven Breaks in Protocol: the Venus and Mars Retrogrades of 2018" is available to Willow's Web Astrology patrons, or it can be purchased for $11.25 by PayPal or email money transfer. 

This is a 5,500+-word article delineating and interpreting the Mars and Venus retrogrades we will experience in 2018.  

Sunday, January 7, 2018

Ruthlessness, Relentlessness, and a Willingness to Play Hardball When Necessary: Some Light-hearted Themes for January 2018

Venus and the Sun come together in exterior conjunction at 18 degrees Capricorn on January 8, and these bodies are also conjunct transformative powerhouse Pluto (exact Jan. 9).

We're shedding some old layers and priorities now, streamlining operations, powering through, and securing new position within social and professional frameworks that will provide the best long-term return on our investments of talent, work ethic, experience, and energy.

This is a powerful time to "set yourself up" in some way - professionally, socially, financially, or maybe all three. There's some alchemical shifting underway in the structural set-ups, some possible movement, some room for advancement. 

Certain scenarios have come to their natural conclusions (hopefully without any ugly scenes), signified by the Sun and Venus conjunct the dwarf planet related to death and endings (Pluto). The natural turning over of the soil here provides openings and opportunities - but ones that must be taken on with serious consideration for our energy reserves and available resources.

The Sun-Venus-Pluto conjunction at 18/19 Capricorn is sextile Mars-Jupiter in energy-conscious Scorpio (exact January 9), and each step of the way, we have to be asking ourselves: Is this worth the investment of time, energy, skills, work, talent, and emotional/psychological space? Am I receiving a reciprocal amount of benefit if I take on new position or new responsibilities?

If not, some intricate restructuring is required. 

Capricorn is a sign of personal ambitions, but we can't let our ambitions and desire for status foolishly out-strip our energy reserves or resources. We have to be very cautious on that front. Things are quite stretched.

With Pluto a little over halfway through its transit of Capricorn, exposing the yuck in the structural frameworks and institutions of Planet Earth, there are plenty of bad deals and shoddy situations to avoid at this time. Circumstances require shrewdness. Actually, let's take that up a notch - circumstances require ruthlessness, relentlessness, and a willingness to play hardball if necessary as we take full control of ourselves and our affairs.

We may be working with some "No More Mr. Nice Guy" situations.

If there is an area of life or self that needs to come more fully under your control, take the reins under these astrological energies and work on it. 

If there is an area of life that is sapping you of energy or strength, focus on making immediate changes, extricating yourself from problematic dynamics, obligations, or relational dynamics. There is powerful Plutonic support for this now.

There is also the need to be shrewd about collective circumstances. The authoritarian and hierarchical power structures, as dominant paradigm on Planet Earth, are built on unequal and ultimately detrimental dynamics of energy exchange.

Those on the "lower rungs" of the hierarchy are rarely compensated for their full energetic expenditures (and pretty well all common folk are considered to be on the lower rungs), leaving them at a chronic deficit. Their extra energy is used to reinforce others higher up the pyramid scheme in more luxurious, comfortable, and financially-lucrative positions.

People in the middle or upper-middle classes are often somewhat insulated from the worst of these unequal energy exchanges (unless they are of a nature that will not allow these types of monied blinders), but the poor and working classes do not have the luxury of that insulation. The brutal, Pluto-laid-bare reality is a constant. 

Working with this underlying energetic reality (most often hidden or denied), with its energy-draining dynamics built right into the system, can be quite a complex and challenging process.

We are also working with the energetic demands we make of other people, particularly when coming from a "higher rung" position. We're working with our own personal spheres of influence and power to create more equitable circumstances and energy exchanges.

We have to look at our time and also our psychological space as being valuable. Taking on new responsibilities means more on our minds, more to think about, more to follow us home at night. This all has to be taken into consideration as communication and intelligence planet Mercury moves to its third exact conjunction to Saturn at 2 degrees Capricorn on January 12. 

With all this Capricorn energy, professional progress is indicated. But positions that look like upgrades on paper may turn out not to be. 

An example of this would be: going from being a server at a restaurant to managing the restaurant. There is some increased societal prestige in taking on the title and role of Manager over lowly server. (I've been a lowly server many times in my life, so that is said tongue-in-cheek.) But managers often don't make anywhere near the tips that servers do. So in the end, being the Manager could mean a whole heaping helping of new responsibility (with a moderate increase in salary or wage) for less overall lucre than the lowly server position.

The best case scenario is that we employ the Scorpio-Capricorn sextile energy to suss out raw deals disguised as promotions ahead of time (in every aspect of life) before we've committed ourselves to a position that will be untenable over the long term.

There is a theme of tough negotiating, of holding out for what's right, leveraging whatever power we hold to create Aquarian win-win scenarios, rather than simply taking our places within dysfunctional structures and dynamics. 

Mercury leaves a fairly stressful holiday retrograde period behind (as well as the sign of its detriment) when it enters Capricorn on January 10 (9:09 p.m. PST). Mercury joins the Sun, Venus, Saturn, and Pluto in the sign, forming a five-body stellium in Capricorn which then becomes a six-body stellium when the Moon enters Capricorn January 14 - 17.

We experience a powerful 26-degree Capricorn New Moon on January 16 within that six-planet stellium.

The New Moon follows potentially-turbulent square aspects between Venus in Capricorn and Uranus in Aries (January 13) and the Sun in Capricorn and Uranus in Aries (January 14), indicating the potential for some new-era structural changes, required for energetic survival, which then cause some degree of friction or upheaval in "the way things are done." 

In the 28-day lunar month that follows the Capricorn New Moon, we're propelled into: new protocols, new rules, new position, new authority, new priorities, new long-term goals, new business practises, and a new sense of control over ourselves and our affairs. The house where 26 Capricorn falls in your natal (and Secondary Progressed) charts indicates the areas where these new openings and themes will be most prevalent.

Intuitively suss out the next moves to make, and then make them...like a boss! Would Capricorn have it any other way? 

These are natural openings we're seeking, natural "next steps," not situations that are forced out of frustration or a desire to relieve ourselves of responsibility. We need the universe's magic behind us now. Our personal ambitions have to be aligned with the will of the universe as far as the structural changes that need to come about. 

With Mercury coming together in its last conjunction with Saturn in Capricorn (within orb until January 20), ideas may be coming together in some nicely concrete ways. We may see a direct path to take as we work to achieve new goals. We may receive some type of professional recognition or recognition for our ideas. 

At the same time, there could be some self-doubt rearing its ugly head, and we may wonder if we are ultimately up to the task. (Considering the general circumstances on this planet, could you blame us?)

Be confident that your body of work and your experience will carry you to the next echelon. So long as you're willing to work your way up the mountain in a mature and level-headed fashion, you got this.

The Capricorn stellium starts to break up when Venus and then the Sun enter Aquarius on January 17 and 19 respectively.

Friday, January 5, 2018

Some Astrological Back-up as Mars Meets Jupiter in Scorpio

Action, aggression, and desire planet, Mars, forms its one and only exact conjunction to Jupiter in Scorpio on January 6 (4:39 p.m. PST), and we're required to put some of our hard-won, deep-down knowledge and wisdom into action.

"The year-long transit of Jupiter through Scorpio brings benefit when we successfully draw on
the wisdom we've gleaned and the experience we've gathered from the more difficult and
arduous events of our lives...

"[Themes] may become particularly heated in late December 2017 and early January
2018 as transiting Mars forms its one and only conjunction to Jupiter in Scorpio, exact January 6 at 17 degrees. This potentially-inflammatory Mars-Jupiter conjunction may require us to actively reinforce new lines in the sand with others. We may have to fight (Mars) to get beneath the surface artifice to the true story. There is the potential for some aggression around the time of this conjunction, which could include some underhanded moves. Employ the X-Ray vision-wisdom to stay on top of the proceedings."

As astrological back-up, I'm offering a duo of articles on the Jupiter in Scorpio transit for a special price. (Please note: people who were patrons at the time that the articles were published have already received them.)

These are both substantial articles, offering insight into the transit of Jupiter through Scorpio, which lasts until November 2018.


For $11.25, you will receive:

"Jupiter in Scorpio: Wisdom Drawn from the Still Depths of the Soul" - the main Willow's Web Astrology article for the Jupiter in Scorpio transit, originally published September 15, 2017 with themes extending to November 2018

"Jupiter in Scorpio and Successfully Updating the Expression of Scorpio for the Aquarian Era" - originally published October 17, 2017

You can purchase the Jupiter in Scorpio Duo by PayPal or email money transfer.