Tuesday, December 31, 2013

New Moon in Capricorn: Fukushima, Gatekeepers, and the Big Responsibility of Thinking For Yourself

Stay on the trail...
Photos: Willow

We open into 2014 with a Plutonic-Mercurial New Moon in Capricorn on January 1.
The Sun and Moon come together in New Moon conjunction at 10 degrees Capricorn at 5:14 a.m. CST, taking us on a trip through the deep, dark, thorny underworld as we start the new year.

This New Moon falls closely conjunct both Mercury (mind, communication, information) and Pluto (hidden, power, poison), indicating that a major theme for the new year involves breaking the hold of mainstream media and its "official sources" in order to get to a clearer understanding of our reality on the planet.
As we start the new year, information (Mercury) is power (Pluto), and we have to take a much closer look at the power dynamics hidden amongst the messages coming to the populace through media and corporate communications. 
With the planet in its current state of ongoing orchestrated collapse, many people are looking to "authority figures" to tell them what to think. A good, old, strong and stern and responsible Daddy Dearest to tell them what to do and what to pay attention to.
And this practice could not be more dangerous to the future of life on this planet.
The problem is, the "authority figures" are playing the game within rotten-to-the-core Pluto in Capricorn hierarchies. The "official sources" are mostly bought and paid for at this point, looking to cover their own asses and protect their own  positions within the rotten power hierarchies. These authority figures are passing bad information around on heavy rotation, looking to further their own interests while manipulating and placating the public. 
This practice is deadly (Pluto), make no bones about it, and nowhere is this more so the case than with the information, analysis, and discourse surrounding the ongoing Fukushima nuclear disaster
In Canada, we have a go-to scientist for the masses by the name of David Suzuki. Suzuki travels around Canada and the world via carbon-spewing airplane to paid speaking gigs (usually on climate change) where he pockets up to $40,000 a pop.

You'll see him in a photo to the left (Holger Motzkau 2010, Wikipedia/Wikimedia Commons) accepting his "Right Livelihood Award" in 2009. (barf) In 2004, a poll taken by the state broadcaster here named him the Greatest Living Canadian. (barf again)
I noticed some previously uninterested ears started perking up in late 2013 when Suzuki released information on Fukushima. All of a sudden, with David Suzuki weighing in, people started to take a bit of notice.
Suzuki really got people's attention when he said that we could potentially be facing the evacuation of the West Coast of Canada and the United States due to the radioactive fallout from the Daiichi nuclear reactors at Fukushima, Japan.
The problem there is that we've known what Suzuki was stating - and much more - for almost three years now. He was not producing any new information or analysis (though it may have been news to most of the mainstream public). He was not producing any crucial research of his own - though he has the means and resources to produce it.

Instead, he was using an "old news," sensationalized angle on Fukushima to get the public's attention - and to hold it.
And here we have an illustration of the "gatekeeper" effect.

People start looking to Suzuki as "the authority figure" on this issue. They look to him for information, analysis, and guidance. They look to what he is saying in order to determine what to think about the situation themselves. They put their trust in this nationally-known scientist who has been given a large public platform via his long-term role with the state broadcaster (Canadian Broadcast Corporation or CBC).
Suzuki is paid by the state broadcaster, has been made a "science star" by the state broadcaster, in a country that is the number two exporter of uranium worldwide. He is the national, mainstream scientific voice in a country that exports Candu nuclear reactors around the globe.

He is not going to threaten that position.
The information this gatekeeper is releasing is partial, watered-down, incorrect, manipulative, dangerous, and deadly.
From the beginning, Suzuki has downplayed the severe threat the radioactive fallout from Fukushima poses to life on this planet.
In a written column released in October 2013 (way past the point when he should know better), Suzuki makes various false claims that are also being spread by other "official sources" through the mainstream media. His column reads like a propaganda press release from the federal government or United Nations. (Link: http://www.straight.com/news/499616/david-suzuki-despite-fukushima-scientists-say-eating-west-coast-fish-safe)
- Suzuki declares Pacific Ocean seafood safe to eat. The arrogance of this statement alone is astonishing, considering we are experiencing an unprecedented nuclear disaster involving the ongoing contamination of the Pacific Ocean. Suzuki makes this declaration despite thousands of reports over the past three years of heightened radioactivity in foods along the West Coast - produce and seafood. California prunes and almonds have been found to contain Cesium-134, a signature of the Fukushima disaster. Cesium was found in topsoil along the West Coast. Bluefin tuna caught off the coast of California was tested and all samples tested showed radioactive Cesium present. Reports of starfish being wiped out, turning to mush, all along the West Coast don't bother Suzuki. Reports of sea life crowding around the shores along the coast in ways no one has ever seen before don't bother Suzuki. There are unprecedented declines in king salmon in Alaska this year (also referred to as Chinook salmon). Unlike other varieties of salmon, these fish like cold, deep waters and will travel further into the ocean to find them. They also eat other fish. These characteristics make this breed of salmon more likely to come into contact with radioactive fallout from the Daiichi nuclear reactors in Fukushima, Japan. But none of this impresses Suzuki.

- Suzuki, like many other scientists, claims the ocean has "diluted" much of the radioactivity released (and still being released day-and-night) by the spewing Daiichi nuclear reactors. The truth is: it's impossible to dilute radioactively-charged isotopes. The ocean is simply spreading them around, not diluting them. This is an unprecedented situation, and scientists simply do not know how the ocean will distribute the radioactivity. There is no decrease in the overall level of radioactivity by spreading the particles around. Radioactively contaminated water is being released into the Pacific Ocean regularly and has been since the disaster began.
- Suzuki likens the radioactive risk from eating Pacific Ocean seafood to the amount of radioactivity you would be exposed to in an airplane ride or two. This is false. The major threat now is with ingestible radioactive particles. These particles can register a relatively low background radiation level, but ingesting even one particle could be deadly. These radioactive particles attach to the human body, especially to the lungs, irradiating the tissues surrounding them. Background radiation levels have very little to do with it.
- Suzuki doesn't once mention the Plutonium that was released from the explosion at the Unit 3 reactor or any of the other radioactive isotopes released. Like most nuclear shills, he focuses on Cesium-134 - a radioactive isotope that decays fairly rapidly - so as to assuage public concerns.
You will see this tactic yet again in a Scientific American article on radioactivity found in kelp off the coast of California in March 2011. The article focuses on the elevated levels of radioactive iodine that were found in kelp after the initial nuclear disaster, in some cases, 250 times the usual levels. 
But again, the article downplays the radioactive threat by focusing on something that will quickly be removed from the environment (radioactive iodine). Additional tests would have to have been done for each radioactive isotope (Uranium, Plutonium, Strontium, Cesium, etc.) in order to determine contamination by them. Instead, the scientists tested only for radioactive iodine.
The Scientific American article falsely claims there is no public health threat from the radioactivity from Fukushima. It also downplays Fukushima, claiming that Chernobyl was worse (wrong again). And again, just like with Suzuki, we have meaningless comparisons to "natural" background radiation that exists in the ocean so as to assure us that everything is just hunky dory.
Nowhere do Suzuki or the Scientific American article mention the other isotopes such as Uranium-234, Uranium-235, or Plutonium-239 which have half-lives in the thousands, tens of thousands, or millions of years. All these isotopes and more have been released - are still being released - from the Daiichi reactors. The fuel from the reactors has been aerosolized by the explosions and is now circling the globe in the atmosphere, coming down via precipitation. The isotopes are contaminating the Pacific Ocean, more every day, producing radioactivity levels that cannot sustain life.
- Suzuki touts the World Health Organization and the United Nations as reliable sources - yet more illegitimate "authorities" on the subject. The WHO claims radioactive particles that make their way to North America’s waters will have a limited effect on human health. It also predicts concentrations to be below its own declared safety levels. Again, there is absolutely no way the World Health Organization can make such outlandish claims with an unprecedented disaster like this.
- Suzuki also mentions radioactivity testing of food by Health Canada, which has been criminally lax since the disaster occurred. Health Canada, like most of the world governments, is not testing food, milk, or water for radioactive contamination in any meaningful or ongoing way. In May 2011, Health Canada reluctantly tested 24 samples of milk from British Columbia. It did not release the levels it was using as "allowable amounts," and it also did not release the exact amounts of radioactivity found, making the tests almost meaningless. Despite the fact that radioactive Strontium 90 was found in small amounts in nine of the milk samples, Canada's milk was declared completely safe and within normal range by Health Canada in 2011.
Independent tests ordered and paid for by private citizens ($400 per milk sample) were required to uncover the Strontium contamination. (This independent testing of milk also ripped the lid off Strontium contamination in Canadian milk that has been present since United States nuclear weapons testing in the 1950s.)

The "official sources" claim the people of Japan are safe from radioactivity. But we have private citizens taking their own Geiger counter readings in Tokyo that are twice the level at which Chernobyl was evacuated.
We have a "state secrets" law forced through Japanese Parliament designed to criminalize journalists, activists, doctors, scientists, and citizens speaking out about the effects of the nuclear disaster. Any health effects or deaths related to the disaster will be swiftly covered up and hushed up.
The "official sources" claim that the West Coast of Canada and the United States is safe from radioactive fallout. But we have private citizens taking Geiger counter readings on the beach outside San Francisco, California that are reaching alert levels multiple times without even touching the sand. 
Medical officials are stumped when it comes to a jump in babies being born with anencephaly in Washington state.
Anencephaly is a terrible birth defect affecting the brain and skull where babies are born blind, deaf, and unable to feel pain. The prognosis for these babies is death.
The usual rate of anencephaly is 1 or 2 per 10,000 births. In three Washington counties, Yakima, Benton, and Franklin, the rate for anencephaly is now 8 in 10,000 births.
Not one "official" can seem to pinpoint a cause. But A Green Road blog pointed us in the right direction.
Benton county in Washington state is the home of the Hanford nuclear site, declared the most contaminated nuclear site in America. Residents of Hanford, Washington were given 30-day eviction notices in 1943 so that the area could be set up as part of the Manhattan Project. The Manhattan Project brought together some of the brightest scientific minds with the intention of developing the atomic bomb for its abilities of mass destruction.
Hanford was a plutonium-producing site, producing the most deadly substance on Earth.
Nuclear waste products from the Hanford site were disposed of by burial in the surrounding desert. Leaks from the containment vessels have been a problem for decades.
With radioactive fallout now coming from Fukushima, blanketing the West Coast of the U.S. and Canada as well as the entire northern hemisphere, we are reaching radioactive tipping points where the layered contamination is too much for biological organisms such as ourselves to withstand, and symptoms and birth defects are starting to show.

A study released in 2013 found a 28% increase in infant hyperthyroidism in babies born in Hawaii, California, Oregon, Washington, and Alaska in the months following Fukushima. Around 40% of children examined in the Fukushima area were found to have thyroid abnormalities. Thyroid problems are associated with exposure to radioactive iodine following a nuclear release.
Yet, nary an "official" can come up with any of these connections.

Gatekeepers like Suzuki are complicit in mass murder. Harsh words, but these are harsh times.

Japanese-Canadian Suzuki is also complicit in the mass murder of his own countrymen and women. He's complicit in the mass murder and destruction of the children of his home country, all while soaking up the awards and accolades in this country, shilling for the propaganda-pushers at the state broadcaster, funded by the federal government, which is funded in part by massive worldwide uranium and nuclear reactor sales.  
Place the responsibility for this complicity firmly with the scientists, the journalists, the government officials, the financiers, and the nuclear industry who are lying to the public, who are diverting the public, who are keeping crucially necessary information and education from the public.
Coyote tracks
This Plutonic-Mercurial New Moon opening the year is a prime and shining portal into: thinking for yourself. Doing your own research. Putting two and two together on your own. Making the connections that are intentionally being hidden from you. Proving the case to yourself in an irrefutable way. Debunking the puffed-up authorities and official sources who are diverting and manipulating and lying. Using your whip-smart intuition to tell you the real story, to help you read between the official lines.
Pluto involves a process of unceremoniously ripping off the blinders. With Mercury in Capricorn conjunct Pluto, we're penetrating the influence on our minds and on consensus reality of illegitimate and fibbing "official sources."
One very potent layer of ongoing information warfare involves the use of gatekeepers. And one very potent layer of this New Moon in Capricorn involves bringing our personal minds out from under the influence of these gatekeepers and of the corporate communications agenda, in general.
The term gatekeeper refers to an "official source" who works to control the information and public discourse on a particular issue. Gatekeepers are often insiders of sorts and, as a result, have insider information at their disposal that is not readily available to the public. Gatekeepers carefully craft, shape, and release this information according to an overall message conducive to the official line coming from the establishment. A tone is set via the gatekeeper.
Often this tone involves a "carry on, no big deal, nothing to see here" theme. This would be the case with Mr. Suzuki.
Other times, the gatekeeper is releasing information that would be damaging to the establishment if it were allowed to spread freely through the populace. When the informational levy will no longer hold, so to speak, and the public is catching on in a big way (as is the case with Fukushima), these individuals are put in place to mind the gate and to shape the public discourse.
Gatekeepers release information at strategic times in order to hold and mould the public's attention on a certain issue. Because the information released is often insider information, it can be very provocative to the public.
Gatekeepers always have some real information to work with, some insider information, and this keeps people on the hook, feeling that the individual has to be legitimate. ("If he's telling us about x, y, and z, he MUST be for real.")
The problem here isn't necessarily that the information is false (though it certainly can be). The problem is with the gatekeeper dynamic itself. This dynamic keeps people looking to a gatekeeper for information and guidance as the "authority" rather than thinking for themselves and doing their own research.
Information released by a gatekeeper is often important to include in our research, but it does not tell the whole story. This is also the case with the stories coming out of mainstream media.
People need to be digging, researching, following leads, and sourcing information on their own, sussing out the real deal sources from the manipulations and joining with others who are doing the same. But the gatekeeper framework keeps people in passive "following" mode, looking to be spoon fed information rather than getting anywhere on their own.
Gatekeepers will never get to the roots. They will never go as deeply as they need to go. They will never finger the parties truly responsible. To do so would be to threaten their own positions, and this is particularly the case for anyone who has been allowed a large public platform from which to operate. 
Arnie Gundersen is (in my mind) a nuclear gatekeeper of the latter variety speaking out on Fukushima and consistently pointing the finger at the Tokyo Electric Power Company. His information is good, but again, he is controlling the public discourse.

What about the entire worldwide nuclear scam? This goes far beyond Tepco, far beyond Japan as a nation. What about the nuclear programme the government of his country, the U.S.A., has participated in and furthered for decades? What about the continued use of depleted uranium munitions by his country's military? What about the store of atomic weapons in the United States, also allowed to its allies? What about the governmental officials and nuclear industry proponents that have made Canada the number two exporter of uranium worldwide? What about the glut of uranium mines held by the Queen of England? What about all the people benefitting financially from the nuclear industry via stock markets? What about the journalists, media, and public relations firms lying to people, omitting crucial information, and perpetrating the massive media blackout?
Tepco is the tip of the nuclear criminal iceberg! But you will rarely see someone like Arnie Gundersen getting any deeper, touching any of the real threads.

You have to be able to sense what these gatekeepers aren't telling you because it's generally more important than what they are telling you.

You have to be willing to go the extra mile yourself - none of the so-called official sources is going to take you.
Gatekeepers will not go to the roots, and this is, in fact, what they are designed for - to keep people away from the real Plutonic roots, the real power structures that are doing damage on this planet. It's a smoke and mirrors show that uses real information to divert from the bigger picture. It diverts from the extent of the problem, from the extent of the responsibility, and from the extent of the criminality.
If you really unravel Fukushima and follow the threads right down to the roots, the entire power structure of this planet is proven corrupt - governments, industry, financiers, media, everything. But gatekeepers don't encourage the public to unravel those threads. They don't encourage people to hold responsible the parties who are truly responsible.
The false claim that "humanity brought this on itself" is also making the rounds regarding Fukushima. The truth is, it's a very small group of people that has put nuclear in place, that has allowed it to take root. We hold them responsible. Most people on this planet don't want nuclear energy or nuclear weapons, and they never did.
In order to get to the real story, we have to dig through information, find sources, and pour through bits and pieces in order to scrap together an irrefutable case. We have to be proving things to ourselves and doing the independent, critical thinking required, rather than blindly accepting the analysis of official sources. 
It is private, independent citizens who are doing the real work, who are creating the real resistance to the worldwide media blackouts.

And it is we who hold the real power.

From the beginning, we have had every official source lying to us, manipulating information, omitting information, and making outlandishly false claims from positions on high.

And from the very beginning, we have spit that back in their faces.

People, we are truly awesome! The power of loving, thinking, feeling human beings coming together in a common cause is awesome. The power of truth and legitimacy always towers over lies and illegitimacy, no matter how much firepower and might they may have. Don't lose sight of that.

It's members of the public - private citizens with no special training - who have been on top of this event since the beginning, who are still covering this event, who are educating people about this event, who are hitting the tipping points.

We knew every step of the way what was really going on. Every false angle was debunked, chewed up, spat back as garbage. We knew we were being lied to. We know we are still being lied to. And we refuse to swallow the false, watered-down information being produced and spread about by these "official sources."

Understand that we are the most powerful substance on this planet - more powerful that Plutonium because we have Pluto on our side. It's the people still willing to think who have the power with this one. It's the people still willing to trust their intuitive hunches and to follow those intuitive hunches to the sources.

And if you are reading this blog, this is you.

It's very easy to debunk the official lines. It's very easy to prove the official sources liars or, at best, ignorant, misguided, and manipulative. I could discredit Mr. Suzuki's bland pablum columns on Fukushima in my sleep.

What it's not easy to debunk is the truth, the reality being scrapped together, bit-by-bit, by thinking, feeling, loving human beings who do not wish to see the continuation of the current course on this planet.

Understand the power we hold now. Understand the power of the freely operating human mind, coming to its own conclusions, making it's own connections, compiling its own valid sources.

Release the jumble of confusing, contradicting "official information" at this Capricorn New Moon and come up with something better. Liberate your mind into its full power this January 1. We need you.

Some Things You Can Do to Avoid Radiation:

- eliminate foods from the Pacific Ocean - or from any ocean if you want to be very careful
- eliminate foods imported from Japan
- limit dairy and meat intake, where radioactivity bio-accumulates
- eat foods from greenhouses
- eliminate or limit West Coast produce, if possible
- stay out of the rain, snow, and dirt whenever possible, as fallout is coming down in precipitation
- buy a personal Geiger counter to monitor background levels. Stay indoors when levels are high. Keep in mind that radioactive particles can still be harmful even when background levels are low.
- look into air filtration systems for your home
- have "outside clothes" and "inside clothes." Don't bring outside clothes or shoes into your home. Leave them in a porch, mudroom, or in a sealed plastic bag.
- take baths in water with baking soda
- bentonite clay and activated charcoal have been suggested as de-toxifiers
- boost your immune system naturally with things like turmeric, garlic, ginger, lemon, apple cider vinegar, dandelion, curry powder, vitamins and minerals. Raw honey, oil of oregano, and colloidal silver all have natural antibiotic properties. Research natural remedies first and use your intuition, as they are not "one size fits all" and can cause unwanted side effects. Use a variety of immune system boosters.
- Vitamin C has been found to reverse damage from radiation exposure, with liposomal Vitamin C being particularly effective (though expensive).
- eat a clean diet - no GMOs, additives, chemicals, preservatives, or processed food. This helps your immune system, as there is less crap to process.
- eat more raw vegetables and fruits
- eliminate or limit sugar, which feeds cancer cells
- alkalize your system to protect against cancer. Eat more alkalizing foods (veggies & some fruits) & less acidic ones (bread, flour, meat, dairy, sugar).
- research the use of baking soda to alkalize your body.
- drink lots of clean, non-chemically treated water. Add a squeeze of lemon juice.
- remember that many recommended remedies for radiation exposure come from the sea (kelp, seaweed, etc.). Go to the sources before purchase. Certain mushroom varieties are said to be protective for radiation, but mushrooms also soak radioactivity up like crazy. Some definite Catch-22s.

For information and analysis on Fukushima:

Other Willow's Web articles on Fukushima
Energy News
BeautifulGirlByDana on YouTube
The Food Lab - scroll down to your country

Friday, December 13, 2013

A Peaceful and Contented Solstice to You from Willow's Web Astrology

Cactus plant flowers signal a time to draw back in, to relax, to ease your pace.
Photos: Willow

Winter solstice is just ahead in the northern hemisphere, and the daylight hours are getting short. The Sun enters Capricorn on December 21 (11:11 a.m. Central Standard Time), marking the shortest day in the wintry northern hemisphere and the longest day in the summery southern.

In the northern hemisphere, this is a time of year to draw back into ourselves, to relax our pace, and to let go of some of the usual demands on ourselves so that the mysterious dark half of the year can weave its magic.

My cactus plant (inherited from my sweet Sagittarius Grandma, born today) is blooming beautifully now, and we can take our cues from it and from the rest of the natural world.

When the days start to get shorter and the sunlight weaker, the cactus plant takes it as an opportunity to produce its beautiful flowers. The plant draws back into itself for a while, slowing its overall growth, and the gorgeous blooms are a result.

To experience the beauty and mystery of this time of year, rather than the depression and low energy, it's necessary that we regulate our lives according to a slower pace. It's necessary that we ease up on ourselves. Just as the plants and animals are not pushing full speed ahead now, we must check in with our bodies and with how we feel. We must check in with our energy levels, first and foremost, rather than deferring to the never-ending To Do lists of things we "have to" complete.

One of the major problems with the corporate model of living and working, particularly under Pluto transiting Capricorn, is that it does not take into account the natural ebb and flow of energy in biological life forms.

People are put on the clock, on standard schedules year-round, and this sets them up for dysfunction, ill health, anxiety, depression, and a sense of failure if they cannot complete the usual list of tasks in the usual timeframes.

There is very little "letting up" in the current structures according to the cycles of nature.

The standard schedules, the demanding routines, and the lists of action items are relentless, and this is a big part of what puts people's systems off course. They will often then blame themselves for a "lack of productivity," asking why they can't just be "normal," and this increases the bad feelings.

We're soon moving into Capricorn season (December 21 to January 19), a sign ruled by Saturn, and depression and decreased energy - in contrast to a desire for sustained progress and achievement - are themes of both that sign and planet.

From a previous post:

"There is a natural ebb and flow to the energy of a human being. The Moon cycles are a big indicator of this. But we are in the Pluto in Capricorn years: caffeine and drug-fuelled to keep us going and going and going. We are in a series of years when it's considered a sickness if you need to rest, if you need to slow down, if you need to just stop for a little while.

We're convinced by a toxic pharmaceutical-pushing medical establishment that we need to be medicated. We need to be more "up" or more "down" or more something in order to be normal, sane, healthy.

Not once does that medical establishment look at the insanity of the constant merry-go-round. Not once does it look at the intentional disruption of the biological systems on this planet. Not once does it look at our food, our water, our air, our mental, psychic, and physical environments.

And so it misses the point...

Again, understand the insanity of a system that ignores this fundamental energy cycle, this Moon cycle, this ebb and flow, this soul root. Don't make the natural reactions of your biology and emotional chemistry into the insane things."

I wrote in the same post about the links between depression in individuals and the degree of collective denial and cognitive dissonance related to the true state of the planet at this time.

For example, the public, en masse, is just starting to get a taste of what's really going on in Fukushima, Japan - what has been going on in an ongoing way for almost three years now.

The lid is being ripped off the devastation that has been done by nuclear energy and nuclear weapons all around the world. The radioactive contamination is layered, coming from many past and present events, and we're starting to get a broader picture of just how precarious our lives are in the shadow of all this (unnecessary) nuclear activity.

The public is just starting to understand what this means for the future.

Understand that as this information (and more) comes more strongly into the public psyche, there is going to be anxiety, depression, desperation, agitation, anger, and fear, and this collective reaction will affect individuals.

Understand that there are forces attempting to start another world war, under the ongoing square series between Uranus and Pluto, and this, too, creates massive collective anxiety and stress without a distinct cause to place our fingers upon.

It's going to take a deep, relaxed, meditative winter state in order to navigate the seismic shifts with our mental, emotional, and physical health left as undisturbed as possible.

Contemplate the beauty and wisdom of that flowering cactus plant and trust.

We are moving to a Gemini Full Moon on December 17 (3:28 a.m. CST), which opposes both the Sun at 25 degrees Sagittarius and Mercury at 18 degrees Sagittarius.

On that very same day, with emotions heightened, the planet of sudden change, revolution, and shocks to the system, Uranus, stations direct at 8 degrees Aries (11:29 a.m.).

These astrological events indicate the potential for an anxious and mentally agitated time. This is a very cerebral Full Moon,  and with the energy and effects of Uranus so potent, we have to watch that the neural connections pinging off don't overload our psyches. There will be a lot of energy running through us during the week of December 16 - 22, and the current structures will not fully contain it. Many will be chomping at the bit, desiring a radical break from current conditions.

Uranus will move direct from that December 17 station into the exact cardinal Grand Cross April 21 - 24, 2014, which includes the fifth of its seven exact squares to Pluto. This Uranus direct station initiates some big seismic shifts that will be brought to a head during that configuration in April.

We also have malefic planet Mars in detriment in Libra entering the cardinal Grand Cross fray at the end of December (December 23, 2013 to January 8, 2014). This adds a definite edge to the proceedings, especially in interpersonal relations.

Mars in Libra opposes Uranus in Aries December 25. It squares Pluto in Capricorn December 30. It squares Jupiter in Cancer January 8, 2014.

With Mars tightly square Pluto, we open into the new year with a New Moon in Capricorn at 10 degrees on January 1, 2014 (5:14 a.m.). That Capricorn New Moon will be tightly conjunct both Mercury and Pluto. In other words, Mercury (mind), the Moon (emotions), and the Sun (conscious current moment) will be crossing through the Plutonic underworld as we open into the new year.

The Pluto-infused New Moon has the possibility of opening into some very bleak, dark, and disturbing information. Some blinders are coming off - en masse and individually - and it likely won't be pretty. There can be no denying what we see and feel as we enter 2014. There can be no denying the collective circumstances in which we find ourselves.

The worldwide media blackout on Fukushima could become more widely known around this time. It is becoming impossible for the state to maintain perfect control on this issue. The levy is about to break, so to speak, and watered-down and manipulated "official information" will continue to be released. Official gatekeepers will be speaking from their carefully-crafted platforms in order to direct and control public discourse.

Overall, shadowy mind and information control is a theme as we enter 2014, in addition to ongoing spying on private citizens by the state.

It will be a challenge to keep our balance and our peace of mind as we shift into the new year. Draw on the image of that flowering cactus plant! And maintain your meditative, energy-saving state.

Since late August 2013, we've experienced three major waves of cardinal Grand Cross action activated by bodies transiting relationship sign, Libra.

The personal planets in Libra have been interacting in dynamic fashion with Uranus in Aries, Jupiter in Cancer, and Pluto in Capricorn, repeatedly forming two oppositions (180-degree aspects) or four squares (90-degrees aspects). These squares/oppositions in the cardinal signs create periods of acute tension, pressure, crisis, and friction, squeezing us into new ways of doing things, like it or not.

These Grand Cross formations, also referred to as Grand Squares, trigger a cardinal requirement in relationships of all kinds: social leadership, initiation of new directions, strong decision-making, new frameworks and rules, new emotional realities.

The first cardinal Grand Cross wave was activated by Venus in Libra in late August 2013. The second wave was activated by Mercury in Libra in mid-September 2013. The third wave was activated by the Sun in Libra during the first half of October 2013.

Now we enter the fourth and fifth waves, triggered by Mars in Libra, and those waves could literally change everything, altering our directions - in relationships and otherwise - in ways we could not have expected.

Buckle your seatbelts. Some turbulence is to be expected as we close 2013 and enter 2014.

From a post August 15, 2013 "Venus Enters Home Sweet Home Libra, Kicking Off the Cardinal Grand Crosses":

"We're being positioned and re-positioned - often dramatically, often unexpectedly - in an effort to reformulate relationships and social scenes to better fit the requirements of the astrological Aquarian era. Rules are changing. Ideals are shifting. Conventions are dissolving. Power dynamics are breaking down.

We can expect situations to escalate around the times that the Grand Crosses become exact, reaching crisis points that require decisiveness and leadership. These crises will often be related to the failure of the old set-ups, requiring that we find a new way...and quickly.

With Pluto involved in the Grand Crosses, potentially uncomfortable issues related to power are being drawn to the surface in relationships with an impetus to examine, make aware, and then transform. With Uranus involved, relationships and personal directions within relationship can change dramatically and unexpectedly as new insights and events arise. People will be rebelling from attempts to pigeonhole them in outdated relationship roles. With Jupiter in the mix, it is our wisdom, our truth, and our personal guiding philosophies (and those of our families) that provide shelter during the Grand Cross storms."

The energy and events kicked up by the previous cardinal Grand Cross waves have set the tone and the impetus for a whole new social framework to unfold in 2014. We have been forced out of old relating patterns - sometimes kicking, wailing, and screaming - and now have to take a hard line so that we don't fall back.

That hard line is upheld by both relationship planets - Venus and Mars - in extended stays in cardinal signs, including retrograde periods. For more on this: "Venus and Mars Retrograde: Cardinal Relationship Shifts and a Fight for Right Human Relations in 2014"

There are big, structural shifts coming about in 2014. There are major decisions to be made and bold moves to be taken, and all this was initiated by the first waves of cardinal Grand Cross action beginning in late August 2013.

Again, we will need to maintain that meditative, matter-of-fact, naturally-flowing, and energy-saving state in order to keep our balance...and our sanity!

There is a re-balancing of relationships underway, and the most common dynamic will be women taking more control and responsibility for having their needs met (Venus in Capricorn) with men shifting their orientations in relationship (Mars in Libra) in light of this.

We're sharing power, sharing the decision-making and responsibilities. We're building relationships that are mutually supportive and successful.

But with Venus transiting Capricorn, women, in particular, must hold the line on the rules and standards that work for them, taking charge in the process of constructing relationships that will sustain over the long-term.

It is no longer enough for women to sit back as passive participants, waiting to see what the man brings them and hoping it meets their needs. (In same sex relationships, it is no longer enough for one member to take on the passive role and one to take on the dominant role.) This was a Piscean-era construct, the damsel in distress waiting for her rescuing Knight.

Women must now take control of having their own needs met in relationship, not accepting less than their standards any step of the way. This will have quite a revolutionary effect on the relationship game.

It will predominantly be men and the masculine energy, in general, doing the balancing and re-balancing in relation to women and the feminine energy holding that hard line. It is the expression of the masculine energy that requires the most re-direction in relationships now.

There are big, structural shifts underway this December and January. But again, we need to implement and navigate these shifts as naturally and matter-of-factly as possible so that we do not expend excessive amounts of energy (especially in relationship) and unbalance ourselves.

Restraint is required in relationships, including sexually, despite our end-of-era loneliness and isolation. This theme is reinforced with Saturn (restraint, limits, boundaries) transiting Scorpio (sex, intimacy, merger) for almost all of 2014.

We need to tunnel down into that relaxed, meditative, and energy-saving state, making the changes and moves we know we need to make with as little stress, fuss, and muss as possible, as naturally as a cactus plant producing its winter blooms.

Saturday, November 23, 2013

Our Sagittarian Beacons of Light

Your friendly anarchist astro-reporter, Willow, in the cottonwoods
Photo: Willow's Mama

The Sun entered Sagittarius November 21, and we've officially broken the surface of our difficult and disturbing subterranean travels through Scorpio.

This Scorpio season was particularly challenging with the planet that rules challenges, Saturn, in the sign, colouring a seemingly never-ending Mercury retrograde through Scorpio (October 21 - November 10) that kept some of the darkest and most fearful subjects stuck on our minds. We were dealing with all the challenging aspects of the Scorpionic mind: paranoia, depression, dread, darkness, triggering conversations and information, detrimental thinking, intrusive and obsessive thoughts that gave us little rest, worst-fear subjects preying upon us, emotional and psychological difficulty that took us down for a death roll or two.

For those stuck under Saturn's thumb in Scorpio, there were some bleak Mercury retrograde moments, indeed.

To add to the challenge, we experienced Neptune and Chiron stationing direct in tandem (November 13 and November 19), stirring up painful confusion, illusion, over-sensitivity, disappointment, devastation, sadness, free-floating anxiety with no discernible cause, feelings of isolation, psychic overwhelm, exhaustion, disturbed sleep, and a strong desire for escape.

The Chiron in Pisces station was a particularly painful release point - and a time when many souls went on to the afterlife.

November has not been the easiest of months.

But now, layer-by-bleak-and-scary-layer, we re-surface from the subterranean Scorpionic depths.

Mercury completes its final challenge - the last conjunction to Saturn in Scorpio - on November 25 at 7:54 p.m. Central Standard Time. It will take a few days to move out of the reach of this dreaded conjunction to Saturn, but we've officially made it out of the most disturbing mental and emotional depths as we hit Hump Day this week.

In the wee hours of November 27, Mercury leaves its retrograde shadow at 18 Scorpio, clearing old, dreaded subjects from our minds. As we start our days on November 27, our minds are officially in new territory, on the other side of all the retrograde heinousness.

At the very same time as Mercury is moving on, Saturn cracks into its next retrograde shadow (the degrees to which it will return during its next retrograde) at 16 degrees Scorpio.

See that?

We have over half the Saturn transit through Scorpio under our belts now. We're not going back. And we've also completed the entire transit of Saturn through the often-difficult Via Combusta, an area of the zodiac associated with karma, misfortune, and unfortunate events.

Scorpio is a dense, complex, complicated sign. It's the sign most people fear. It's the sign where we hide everything we're scared of, everything we're uncomfortable with, everything left unsaid.

So as Mercury went picking through this sign, back and forth, we were touching on some of the most difficult subjects in existence (including the possibility of the annihilation of much of humanity via the Fukushima nuclear disaster). Not only that, but Saturn held our noses in these subjects until we got a good, old whiff. Until we got a full handle on every dark and disturbing angle, making the unconscious, conscious. We couldn't squirm our way out of any of it - not if we wanted to be fully responsible and on top of our games moving into the second half of Saturn in Scorpio.

Mercury went direct November 10 at 2 degrees Scorpio, exactly trine stationing Neptune in Pisces.

And now, as Mercury in Scorpio conjuncts Saturn for the last time until November 2014, we start to get some perspective on our hard-won mental, emotional, and psychological progress. We start to see the first fruits of our labours, the first bits of gold that come out of our pain.

As the Sun is shining down on us from jovial, humourous, gregarious, and optimistic Sagittarius, have faith that you will come through this. Have faith that relief is up ahead. Because it is.

Our Sagittarian beacons of light are in the window, guiding us home, guiding us to safety:

As stated, Mercury conjuncts Saturn in Scorpio November 25 and then cracks into new territory early on November 27.

Mercury in Scorpio will form a grounding and productive sextile to Venus in Capricorn (which is preparing for its own retrograde) on November 27, as well (8:45 p.m. CST). This Mercury-Venus sextile provides an earthy outlet and release for our hot and over-taxed Third Eyes, coming out of the extended transit of Mercury through intuitive, alchemical Scorpio. It's likely that we will be able to concretely apply the things we've seen and the things we've uncovered to maximum success here. Every last bit of difficult Mercury in Scorpio perspective is useful and usable now and will be through the upcoming Venus retrograde (December 21, 2013 to January 30, 2014), particularly for advancement in partnership, both personal and professional.

Mercury forms another nice, easy, flowing aspect on November 28 - a trine to Jupiter in Cancer (1:23 a.m.). This trine is some healing balm for our shredded psyches, as the raw Scorpionic intelligence finds a caring home and an accepting place. The meaning and reason for our deep, dark, painful examinations during Mercury's retrograde may become more fully known to us here, and we may have renewed faith that we are on the right track.

The Sagittarius Sun trines Uranus in Aries on November 30 (12:25 p.m.), providing another day of flowing energetics. This trine shines a light on our progress into the new astrological era, providing lightning-flash insight and renewed faith on our weird and wild path forward.

The Moon enters Scorpio November 29 (10:03 p.m. CST) in its Balsamic phase, indicating one last emotional/psychological hurdle as we close out the month of November.

This Dark of the Moon phase in Scorpio closes out a difficult lunar cycle that began November 3 with the New Moon Scorpio eclipse conjunct Saturn. That New Moon eclipse took some of us into very difficult emotional and psychological territory, and we've been kept there ever since.

This Dark of the Moon phase (November 29 - December 2) can stir up some difficult emotions related to this lunar cycle and to any associated events that occurred.

But we are folding it all into the alchemical soup, preparing for new emotional territory. Allow yourself to feel it, but don't get stuck. We're moving on.

The Sagittarius New Moon occurs December 2 at 10 degrees (6:22 p.m. CST), releasing us from the last grips of this very difficult Scorpio season.

Mercury in Scorpio will form another grounding and productive sextile to Mars in Virgo on December 3 (10:35 a.m.), indicating a time when we can practically apply our new intelligence to great effect. An awareness of the details right down to the X-Ray examination level assists us greatly here as we close out the Mercury transit of Scorpio.

Mercury leaves Scorpio (finally) for Sagittarius December 4 at 8:42 p.m., and a cheer goes up across the land!

The aspects as we close out November and begin December are highly supportive to our zippy little messenger planet Mercury (Mercury-Venus sextile, Mercury-Jupiter trine, Mercury-Mars sextile), which has been under such stress over the past six weeks. These aspects indicate that we now have mental support in areas where we have felt isolated, shredded, and under pressure over the past month.

The most debilitating weight of the world is being lifted off our shoulders and off our minds. Allow this process to do its work, layer-by-layer, and have faith that an acute dark period is now behind us.

Saturday, November 16, 2013

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Sunday, November 10, 2013

Neptune and Chiron Station Direct Trine Mercury in Scorpio: Cutting Through End-of-Era Backwash

Both Neptune and Chiron station direct in Pisces over the next ten days - Neptune at 2 degrees Pisces on November 13, Chiron at 9 degrees Pisces on November 19.

The wounding Piscean era themes are nip, nip, nipping at us through the end of November, and we're going to have to stay awake and alert in order to navigate our way through.

This is tricky because with these stations, things are a little sleepy, a little dopey, and a little...any of the other applicable Seven Dwarves.

The Moon enters Pisces tonight (8:36 p.m. CST) until early morning Wednesday, and this can exacerbate the effects of these stations.

I would sum the vibe of the next ten days up like this:

"Why bother changing into pajamas? I'm just going to have to get dressed again when I wake up in the morning."

These stations can have the effect of softening sharp edges, putting a warm glow over the proceedings. But things can also be slipped by us through these stations, and we can find ourselves doing things or allowing things that are not in our usual characters. You can read about some common Neptune stationing effects here: Neptune Stations Direct and Brings the Foggy, the Floaty, the Wispy, and the Surreal

Neptune went retrograde at 5 degrees Pisces on June 7, 2013. It has now completed that retrograde period and stations direct at 2 degrees Pisces November 13. This is an article from that retrograde station. The themes are kicked up again as Neptune and Chiron station direct in tandem:

"Hollow-gut disappointments hang around us like stale fumes. End-of-era love relationships are a confusing, disorienting mess. The idea that our dreams are not special, that we're not special under egalitarian Aquarius, can erode us at the heart. The discrepancy between where we hoped we'd be at this point versus where we really are is staggering at times - both personally and on a broader societal or collective level.

Anyone aware of the circumstances of humanity on Planet Earth at this time will find them humbling, to say the least...

Some lingering depression, disappointment, disillusionment, despondency, or a sense of utter futility about carrying on from here can be expected for the next couple weeks...There's an unfulfilled sadness in the air, in the collective psyche, so watch to make sure you or your loved ones don't tip too far into the psychic bleak.

The new guy wasn't who you hoped he was. The new job that seemed so interesting turned out to be more of the same. The daily grind seems increasingly dull, painful, pointless, hopeless. Reaching for the bottle, for the bong, for junk food, or for the credit card are all possibilities to dull the pain, to desensitize.

This is standard end-of-era backwash, however. More end-of-Pisces clearing. Fool me once, shame on you, Neptune. Fool me twice, shame on me.

Keep moving, keep flowing, and keep laughing at the insanity of the situations with which we are faced in this foul year of our Lord two thousand and thirteen.

It's the sensitives, the creatives, the Piscean/Neptunians who hold the true weight of where we are right now. They're the ones holding the energy of Pisces, the energy of the spiritual whole, where every last detail matters and nothing can be conveniently amputated or ignored without problematic future repercussions. They're the ones potentially being crushed under the cruelty, the inhumanity, and the dysfunction of the current scenes. Yes, it's that serious.

But it's also funny.

Isn't it?

To be set up with these seemingly impossible clusterfuck scenarios during our lifetimes on Planet Earth?

It didn't start with us, and it doesn't end with us.

But we do have a prime and shining opportunity to direct things now.

Neptune stationing, like prominent Neptune in the natal chart, can create a sort of stoner effect on even the most sober among us. Air-headed and flaky. Forgetful. Dreamy. Wistful. Pie-in-sky. Avoiding. Self-pitying. Indulgent. La La Land-living.

Stay on track and stay focused on your own newly burgeoning Aquarian-era ideals, despite the Neptunian fog tempting us to go down maudlin back alleys or to take diversionary, wishful-thinking detours. We have plenty of assistance in keeping our feet on the ground with the Neptune trine to concrete and steady Saturn in Scorpio. Focus on dealing successfully with the full reality in front of you, and the rest will take care of itself."

Recall that we're moving through some tough transits, aspects, and dynamics this November, but also recall that we're tougher.

Do whatever you can to keep your spirits up. Keyword: buoyancy

Mercury, now direct at 2 degrees Scorpio, is exactly trine stationing Neptune in Pisces, and at the very least, we are assisted with whip-smart intuition, X-Ray vision, and whispers from the otherworldly guides in order to penetrate the potentially painful dynamics.

Maintain your black sense of humour about the current conditions, speak up when you need to about the things that are oppressing you, and, above all, just keep going.

The Seahags

To ease our suffering minds, here's a little homegrown flavour, The Seahags. "On the Rock Where Moses Stood" and "Barefeet" are particular gems!

Thursday, November 7, 2013

Suicide Risk Alert Through December 2

Please Note: This alert is not meant to scare anyone. It does not mean people will be randomly committing suicide. It means that for people already at risk of suicide, this month is potentially very difficult.

We're moving through a time period when concentrated, complex, and multi-layered problems are surfacing from the depths. These problems often have no immediate solutions, and this can drive people to thoughts of suicide or to actual suicide attempts.

There are times when the universe heaps too much upon us, and this is one of those times.

As Mercury (the mind) stations direct November 10 in the sign of death (Scorpio), people are under a great deal of mental, emotional, psychological, and psychic pressure, and it may become impossible for them to see beyond their problems.

This Mercury station coincides with a very emotionally and psychically heavy day for the collective - Remembrance Day in Canada and Veterans Day in the United States November 11. This is a time when the collective psyche is drawing up memories and realizations of mass death, war, pain, destruction, and unresolved trauma related to those things.

This exacerbates the difficulty for individuals, as they also have this heavy collective layer sitting on them at this time.

There is a great deal of collective denial at this time about the true state of things on the planet. This collective denial is always difficult for Scorpionic/Plutonic types who often do not have the luxury of turning a blind eye. The intense cognitive dissonance in the collective at this time can also break individual psyches down.

Currently, we are under the influence of multiple difficult transits and aspects:

We're opening out of a very challenging Scorpio New Moon eclipse, conjunct dreaded Saturn, on November 3, which brought many underlying issues to the surface. We don't fully come out from under the weight of these issues until the Sagittarius New Moon on December 2, just before Mercury leaves Scorpio for Sagittarius December 4.

The fourth Uranus in Aries - Pluto in Capricorn square is just past exact (Nov. 1).

We have a stellium of planets (Mercury, Sun, Saturn, along with the North Node of the Moon) in Scorpio, a sign associated with deep trauma, concentrated fear, and emotional and psychological hell.

Saturn is moving through an area of Scorpio in one pass, indicating a time of potentially intense challenge when we can be pushed out of our comfort zones in a big way, required to do heavy excavation in our lives related to multiple trigger subjects.

As stated, messenger planet Mercury is keeping all this difficulty on our minds as it slows to a stop in the zodiac November 10. All this can prey on people's minds in excruciating ways, and it's possible that they are seeing no way out at this time.

Wounded healer Chiron is stationing direct in Pisces November 19, stirring points of intense hopelessness and psychic overwhelm. Again, this is a "nowhere to run, nowhere to hide" type of theme, problems with seemingly no solutions, and people can simply give up under the difficulty of this.

Venus has just entered Capricorn and is activating the almost-exact Uranus-Pluto square. Venus squares Uranus in Aries exactly on November 14 and conjuncts Pluto in Capricorn November 15. The conjunction to Pluto November 15 is particularly harsh and can result in people feeling cut off from any love or social support. These conditions make it much easier for people to contemplate ending it all.

Chiron in Pisces will be at its most painful point in the direct station at the time of the Venus-Pluto conjunction, as well, indicating themes of isolation, grief, and a desire for escape.

Mercury conjuncts the North Node in Scorpio and triggers the degree of the September 18 Venus-Saturn-North Node conjunction on November 18/19. (I was asked when this suicide risk period began, and I would say around this time - equinox, coming out of the Venus-Saturn-North Node conjunction in Scorpio sextile Pluto stationing direct in Capricorn.)

Mercury will then conjunct Saturn in Scorpio for the final time November 25.

November 18/19 and November 25 (the dreaded Mondays) are dates when things are potentially pushed to a head, reaching crisis points.

The Sun enters Sagittarius November 21, and there will be some relief from the deep and troubling themes of Scorpio starting at that time.

As stated, Mercury leaves Scorpio for Sagittarius December 4.

Understand the month of November as a month of potential emotional, psychological, and psychic crisis. Much of the disturbance is going on beneath the surface, as well, with collective roots, and we simply do not see or perceive everything people are dealing with at this time.

Keep an eye on the people in your circle and beyond. Extend your loving humanity to those who are struggling, and do not heap any more on people already at their breaking points.

The business structures and "business as usual" ethic have to come much lower on the list of priorities now. Maintaining emotional and psychological health, assisting those in crisis, and saving lives are most important at this difficult time on the planet.

Monday, November 4, 2013

Mercury Stations Direct in Scorpio: Yanking Detrimental Mental Patterns Out From the Root

Mercury retrograde has just started slowing to station direct on November 10 at 2 degrees Scorpio (3:12 p.m. CST), and we're picking through trigger-happy conversational minefields all week.

Even the lightest of comments can hit raw nerves now, setting off reactions we may not have intended. Watch your tongue carefully.

That said, there will also be plenty of people intentionally trying to get under our skins. Slough those buggers off right away, and back out of any exchanges that seem to be heading into the trigger-happy danger zone.

We have to police our own thoughts and communication this week, maintaining tight boundaries.

When messenger planet Mercury is in Scorpio, the messages we're receiving can be uncomfortable, traumatic, or even devastating - especially with Chiron stationing direct in Pisces November 19. But these potentially difficult messages are ultimately also empowering, liberating, and consciousness-raising.

The information we're picking up and picking through can consume our minds now, creating scenarios with intrusive or obsessive thoughts. Fixed sign Scorpio takes us under and then holds us there until things really sink in. Some highly irritating and oppressive thoughts have been preying on our minds during the transit of Mercury through deep, dark, emotionally-dense Scorpio, which began September 29 and ends December 4, and these thoughts can increase in intensity going into Sunday's direct station.

To offset the mental depths, reel your brain in, and bring it back from the brink. Meditation, exercise, and good, solid mental discipline all help our cause. We're drawn to intense and even painful subjects now, but we have to keep our minds out of the bottomless pits.

There are some potent exchanges and connections in the works this week and next. The energy of the Venus-Saturn-North Node conjunction of September 18 is being stirred yet again as we continue to wrap our minds around the intensity of that time and what it meant for us.

Connections and conversations over the next weeks hit release points, liberating our minds and our emotions from some long-term oppressiveness, but we have to stay with it right to the end and have those squirm-inducing conversations in order to reap the rewards and find relief. 

During this Saturn-infused Mercury transit through Scorpio, we're working to get out from under that which oppresses us, severing ties to it, but it's going to take all our awareness and courage to do so.

We have to speak up over the next weeks about hidden energy dynamics that aren't right in our lives. We need to extricate ourselves from scenarios that put us at a disadvantage. And we have to allow time for the full realizations to rise to the surface of the conscious mind. Be gentle with yourselves and others, but be ruthless in the areas being drawn to your attention.

What intrusive thoughts do you want to eliminate? Whose opinions do you want to delete? What media and information sources do you need to get rid of? Are there perspectives that have undue influence over you? Anyone's crappy comments that have stuck with you for far too long?

Merc Rx in Scorpio is asking us to take action on all these fronts.

This week is great for getting to the bottom of detrimental mental patterns and yanking them out at the roots.

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

New Moon Eclipse in Scorpio Conjunct Saturn: Final Resolution of Via Combusta Themes

The New Moon eclipse falls at 11 degrees Scorpio on November 3 (6:50 a.m. CST), sandwiched in conjunction between Saturn at 13 degrees Scorpio and the North Node and Mercury, conjunct at 7 degrees Scorpio.

This is an important New Moon for a number of reasons.

As stated previously on the blog, Saturn is currently travelling through an area of Scorpio (11 to 16 degrees) to which it will not return in retrograde motion. Saturn is making only one pass through these degrees of the zodiac. This is it. So we have one kick at the cat with the themes of these degrees and one kick at the cat only.

As Saturn shoots through this zone (October 14 to November 26), we have to focus quite intently on keeping the energy in our lives just right. We are cementing a foundation now, halfway through the Saturn in Scorpio transit, that will either support our emotional and psychological health and development for the next 29 years or create hassles, issues, and karmic setbacks at various times over the next 29 years.

As usual with Saturn, we have to be quite serious about things. And in Scorpio, we have to fully understand our lessons - each and every angle - and integrate them into our selves and into our lives. No half-assing it.

If we have doubts, concerns, or intuitive misgivings about anyone or anything in our lives now, we're required to wait before making any further commitments.

From a previous post:

"If all our energetic ducks are in a row and if all the power dynamics have been worked out satisfactorily, this time period (Oct. 14 - Nov. 26) can result in some fairly easy progress with natural next steps occurring with projects and in career.

People will be moving into more structured and solid positions of authority this fall quarter, and this particularly includes positions involving shared power, money, and resources.

Under the ongoing stressors, people who have not fully earned their authority or positions, who have not set the right energetic foundations, will soon be in over their heads, however.

With Saturn conjunct the North Node this fall, be careful not to take on too much, too fast - no matter how promising things seem. The commitments we make or deepen this fall could be life changing and deeply altering for us over the long term. We must be very careful to follow our intuition down to the last twinge regarding decision and commitments made at this time, particularly involving legal contracts or money."

Not only is Saturn crossing the halfway point in the sign of Scorpio in this "single pass zone," but it is also completing its transit of the Via Combusta.

From a previous post:

"The Via Combusta is an area of the zodiac between 15 degrees Libra and 15 degrees Scorpio (except for 23 and 24 degrees Libra) known as the burning path or combustible way. Traditionally, it is associated with "unfortunate and ineffectual events."

My interpretation of the Via Combusta is humanized and comes from the point-of-view of a person experiencing life with key natal placements in this area.

When the Via Combusta is strongly highlighted, there is a feeling of running the gauntlet through sometimes seemingly insurmountable odds, collective karma, booby traps and friction, very often related to relationship dynamics, which are Libra and Scorpio territory.

There's a fire in the Via Combusta and within people with a strong Via Combusta signature that keeps them burning, burning, burning a path through life as you would imagine a shooting star burning an accelerated path through the night's sky. There's a feeling here that one has to keep going, no matter what, through the wreckage of old, crystallized layers that would keep us stultified, constricted, and unsatisfied with old wounds perpetually reopened by a revolving cast of characters.

The basic goal of the Via Combusta is to reach escape velocity. In space travel, this is the point a space shuttle reaches when its speed and momentum allow it to escape the effects of gravity pulling it back down to Earth. In the case of the Via Combusta, it's about reaching the points of awareness and pure momentum where we escape the gravity of the sticky, tricky wreckage trying to draw us back into old territory, especially involving old constructs and dynamics of relating.

But with Saturn in the Via Combusta, we have to earn the right to pass. We have to prove that we're mature enough, serious enough, and that we've taken full responsibility for moving on completely, resolving the bits of dramatic charge and the last karmic tendrils that would catch us, tempt us, and drag us back. This is escape velocity for the long-term, under the weight of Saturn."

With Saturn now completing its transit of the Via Combusta (November 21), we have to prove that we've earned our advancement beyond the sticky relational and energetic traps that could hamper us over the long run.

In Scorpio, we're dealing with dynamics that make us uncomfortable. These are dynamics that scare us, that trigger us or others, that feel as if we will never be free of them. They involved long-ingrained ruts and patterns. They are hidden, unspoken dynamics that latch onto us through ancestral lines. These are dynamics that have been the bane of many existences for generations, things that have been carried forward and carried forward - until now.

With Saturn at the tail end of the the Via Combusta zone of Scorpio, we have to be willing to eliminate every last unsatisfactory dynamic, even if that means standing alone under our own power for a while.

At this point, we have to prove ourselves unwilling to take scraps any longer. We have to prove ourselves unwilling to make due with subpar treatment or with a lack of consideration from others. And we have to confront and challenge, head-on, each instance of this shoddy treatment in order to cement new boundaries and standards in our lives. Each unsatisfactory dynamic has to be addressed and the energy of it re-directed.

Mars at 11 degrees Virgo is exactly sextile the Scorpio New Moon, and this re-direction of energy must be very precise. We must look oh-so-carefully at our own motivations and how we go about getting what we think we want. We must look at what we're doing, eliminating any areas of manipulation being used on our part to get what we think we want. And we have to get ourselves out of the reach of the manipulative grasp of others, also.

As much as possible, we have to eliminate areas where we're keeping ourselves stuck out of habit, emotional attachment, lack of awareness, or fear. With Saturn in the Pisces decan of Scorpio, we have the power now to dissolve fear-based energy patterns and ruts, propelling ourselves onto a new foundation for growth and development.

There is a breaking of habits required at this Scorpio New Moon, consciously altering our habitual emotional reactions and psychological patterns and re-training ourselves and the people in our lives accordingly.

There is an emotional and psychological regeneration coming through this Scorpio New Moon. A clearing. A weight being lifted off us. Concentrated layers we've been struggling under can be made visible, can disappear. But we have to gather all our courage and go for it.

The New Moon falls in a conjunction to Mercury and the North Node in Scorpio, and a big part of this involves analyzing and then voicing the hidden energy dynamics that leave us short, that use or drain us. We have to speak up, or it continues.

The Sun and Mercury Rx form their interior conjunction at 9 degrees Scorpio on November 1 under the Uranus-Pluto square and the Dark of the Moon. This Sun-Mercury conjunction is a little too hot to handle, as we are re-visiting the massively potent energy and themes of the Venus-Saturn-North Node conjunction of September 18.

Fall equinox (in the northern hemisphere) was one concentrated, complex, and potentially painful son-of-a-bitch. We processed a huge amount of energy through our physical, emotional, and psychic bodies at that time - and we're still processing!

Now, as the Sun and Mercury form a conjunction here along with the North Node, we are brought back into that equinox energy and will hopefully pick up some new perspective on all that has occurred since the days and nights balanced. This Sun-Mercury conjunction shines some light on the mysteries of that time period, and it all becomes even clearer as Mercury makes its final pass over the North Node in Scorpio on November 18.

We've been dealing with highly concentrated and highly karmic scenarios since Saturn entered Scorpio in October 2012.

But there is a sliver of light visible as we come out of this Scorpio New Moon, leading us into a new chapter, emotionally and psychologically liberated from many of the issues and fears that have preyed upon us.

We just have to want it more than anything - this escape velocity, this liberation, this new platform, this advancement beyond old traps.

Here, at the Via Combusta New Moon eclipse in Scorpio, we take responsibility for the energy we want in our lives, and we take responsibility for eliminating anything less.

We advance the new eclipse backdrop, dropping old scenes and setting the stage to our liking.

Since December 6, 2010, Saturn has been in the Via Combusta. It will leave this burning path November 21, 2013.

Because the advancement related to Saturn is gradual, step-by-step, and completed over the course of time, it's easy to lose sight of just how much progress we've made. When we're under Saturn's thumb, we keep our heads down, nose-to-grindstone, or we suffer the consequences.

But now, as Saturn zips through the final degrees of the Via Combusta, marking the halfway point through the sign of Scorpio, we can take a quick peek at how far we've come since December 2010, particularly in relationships.

Trust that there is a reason for your challenges - there was then, and there is now.

Saturn entered the Via Combusta so that we had the fire and the fuel to change our foundations. This is heavy, time-consuming work. We needed those potent, karmic, concentrated Via Combusta scenarios because they provided the most energy and the greatest possibility for advancement beyond old forms, particularly in relationship.

But we are soon through this burning zone. The alchemical reaction is reaching its peak. The molten lava we've been riding, shaping, and directing will soon start to cool and harden. As Saturn moves beyond the burning way, our scenarios become less fiery, less unpredictable, and less malleable. We will soon be left with the full reality and the full responsibility of what we've built.

At the time of this Scorpio New Moon eclipse and for the following 28-day lunar cycle, focus on using the last of the Via Combusta fire to set things just right in your life, in your relationships, and in your foundations. Work on the last little details, the last unresolved hotspots that could come back to bite you. Keep going until you've cleared your entire plate, and that will satisfy you and Saturn both.

Friday, October 25, 2013

A Challenging Week Ahead: Getting Out From Under the Detrimental Weight of Things

Photo: Willow

We have a potentially challenging week ahead of us October 28 to November 3.

The Mars in Virgo opposition to stationing Chiron in Pisces (exact October 30) is dropping the fog in a big way. End-of-era listlessness, confusion, lack of direction, and "aren't we done yet?" are sitting on us, dragging at us, making the material world that much more difficult. Mars in earth sign Virgo is riding our asses on the details, but one more overlooked detail on our plates could push us over the edge. This is the material realm versus the metaphysical/unseen realm, and keeping the right balance is our goal and our challenge.

Chiron stationing in Pisces makes us want to throw our hands up and weep at the state of it all. This body in this sign in this direct station has a numbing effect, an anesthetizing effect. It tells us to just roll over, pull the covers over our heads, and go back to sleep. The crushing collective psychic pain wrapped up in this placement is tough under any circumstances, but at the end of the astrological Piscean era - where we are now - it can be downright miserable. Expect people to be spacey, easily confused, and easily discouraged this upcoming week. Sensitivities of all kinds are heightened, including to food, drink, and drugs.

Then on the other end of the polarity we have peppy, active drill sergeant Mars in Virgo barking, "Buck up, for God's sake! Get in the game. Show us some drive. How little heart can you possibly have that you're just going to weep and wallow and sigh and give up?" (The full Mars in Virgo post can be found here.)

Mars in Virgo wants us in tip-top shape. No screwing around with the usual Neptunian escapes: excessive junk food, sugar, drinking, drugging, TV, music, internet, shopping, daydreaming, sports, gambling, sex - whatever diverts our attention from the matters at hand.

We can utilize some of these Neptunian escapes in tight moderation and for limited times to ease our psychic and emotional suffering this week, but we have to maintain just the right medicinal doses to keep us balanced and sane.

No going overboard, and no crossing the line, though Chiron in Pisces has us wanting to slip away - far, far away - from it all.

No slipping!

We have some sucking it up to do this week, princesses.

And nothing helps one counteract the clinging, cloying depression and inertia of Chiron in Pisces like penetrating to the sources, to the roots, of all that collective psychic pain.

Mercury retrograde is on its way to a second conjunction to Saturn in Scorpio October 29. This adds to the potential for depression, anxiety, dread, and a feeling that it's all too much for us this upcoming week. (The full Mercury in Scorpio retrograde post can be found here.)

One of the keys to getting out from under the paralyzing, suffocating weight of these times is to tunnel down beneath the Band-Aid cures, beneath the glossy, inspirational idioms, right to the roots of the situation.

There are power dynamics and scenarios and relationships creating depression for us now. Pinpointing exactly what's going on can be painful, but ultimately it is liberating. In fact, penetrating to what's really going on, beneath all the symptomatic pain and depression, is ultimately the only liberation right now.

With Mercury (conversation) coming together with Saturn (depression), people are talking about depression, and this is a good thing, for the most part.

Depression is often talked about as if it is a disease, and it certainly can be.

But depression is also a natural bio-chemical response to the state of things on this planet. This is what most people miss. Or maybe it's what they choose to gloss over because then they are not in control. Then the issues snowball. They become huge and unmanageable via the usually prescribed methods. And there is no real solution - only understanding, acceptance, love, endurance, and a willingness to stare it all down, to expose it.

One of the biggest sources of fuel for depression these days is the degree of collective denial we are living with en masse. It's emotionally upsetting, to say the very least. This is the distance between the bottom line reality on this planet and the way most people - including our so-called leaders - are living. The decisions being made and the options being presented don't have much basis in that bottom line reality. Most are living in an artificial state of manufactured reality, and there isn't much that is more depressing to a natural, biological being than living in artifice. Take a look at the animals in the zoo.

We are connected to the living beings who are suffering on this planet, and they're connected to us and to our suffering. And when that suffering is denied, avoided, glossed over, brushed aside, it adds a heaping helping of psychic disturbance to our psyches. Did you really think you were just going to go about your happy, happy life while the majority of this planet suffers under systems and structures that create and reinforce that pain? That's not how life on this round, rotating ball really works.

You remember what went on in Iraq? What's still going on? Well, the devastation and pain from that is monstrous, unimaginable, and it has ripple effects that haven't even gotten started yet. We're going to be dealing with this one for centuries.

You know the nightmare going on in Fukushima these days? That affects you. It affects all of us. It seeps into our psyches, whether we pay it any conscious heed or not. We're tied to the water on this planet, to the creatures in that water. We're tied to the workers on the Fukushima front lines who are being irradiated as I type. We're tied to the emotional and psychic states of other living beings. We can't separate ourselves from this "terrible tragedy that's happening somewhere else." We're teetering on the brink, right here, right now, and we have been since March 11, 2011.

You remember when we thought the oil gusher and massive, criminal dosing of Core-exit in the Gulf of Mexico was the big collective problem? Doesn't Chiron in Pisces have a funny way of putting things in context for us?

We live in a world that wants to separate people into the happy and the unhappy, the joyful and the depressed, the fortunate and the unfortunate, the normal and the abnormal, the positive and the negative.

But those distinctions are not real.

If the scenarios on Planet Earth during transiting Chiron in Pisces (2011 - 2019) teach us anything, it's that what affects one will eventually affect all. There is no real line between the fortunates and the unfortunates. We cannot separate ourselves from the corruption, the murder, the erosion, the destruction, the poisoning that are going on - no matter what dimension you mistakenly believe you are ascending to, no matter how much fake currency you have in your bank account.

The fascists didn't really lose the war.

And now they've gotten into our food, into our water, into our air, into our minds, into our psychic environments, into our relationships, and into the social fabric that holds us together.

They have people chasing money and luxury items and tropical vacations and 200 "likes" on their seductive, social media selfies. They have people chasing a highly skewed idea of "success," all so very poisonous and destructive during the Pluto in Capricorn years.

They have people regimented in inhumane 8 to 5 office schedules that do not take into account the natural ebb and flow of energy in a biological organism.

And they have people convinced that if they can't sustain this grueling Monday to Friday march, they are worthless, damaged, less than whole. In short, if you can't keep up with that relentless, robotic, fluorescently-lit pace, there's something very, very wrong with you.

If you have to work two or three jobs just to keep a roof over your head and food on your table, there's something wrong with you.

If you are a man who can't work 14, 16, 18-hour days, there is something wrong with you.

If you are woman who can't cheerfully whip up culinary delights for her family every night of the week after working a full day, there is something wrong with you.

They have people snowed, that's for sure.

They have people blaming themselves for situations that have been planned and orchestrated to be just this bad...and worse.

There is a natural ebb and flow to the energy of a human being. The Moon cycles are a big indicator of this. But we are in the Pluto in Capricorn years: caffeine and drug-fuelled to keep us going and going and going. We are in a series of years when it's considered a sickness if you need to rest, if you need to slow down, if you need to just stop for a little while.

We're convinced by a toxic pharmaceutical-pushing medical establishment that we need to be medicated. We need to be more "up" or more "down" or more something in order to be normal, sane, healthy.

Not once does that medical establishment look at the insanity of the constant merry-go-round. Not once does it look at the intentional disruption of the biological systems on this planet. Not once does it look at our food, our water, our air, our mental, psychic, and physical environments.

And so it misses the point.

With Mars in the sign of the worker making an opposition to Chiron in Pisces, it's your job this week - our job - to get to the point. To root this the fuck out so that it stops preying on us.

It's our job to make the connections between a) how we feel and b) what is going on on this planet that could be leading us to feel that way.

It's our job to tunnel down to the last despicable roots, to the last areas of manipulation, and to pull it out. All the way. No half-assed jobs.

It's our job this week to look at the basic facts, at the basic realities, and to make our decisions from there.

It's our job not to make ourselves pathological just because our biology is responding in a perfectly understandable fashion to stressful and frightening situations.

It's our job to understand depression as a natural and normal reaction to a world that has gone way off course. It's our job to integrate it as much as possible, to keep our emotional states as fluid as possible, to feel it all, right down deep, but not to allow it to drag us under and keep us there.

We're moving into a New Moon in Scorpio conjunct Saturn on November 3 (7:50 a.m. CST). This New Moon is also an eclipse.

This means we are in the Dark of the Moon for a good chunk of this next week, one of those natural energetic low points I was talking about. Again, understand the insanity of a system that ignores this fundamental energy cycle, this Moon cycle, this ebb and flow, this soul root. Don't make the natural reactions of your biology and emotional chemistry into the insane things.

During this Dark of the Moon phase, we experience All Hallow's Eve October 31, a time when we have to be very energetically vigilant. We also experience the fourth of seven squares between Uranus in Aries and Pluto in Capricorn on November 1.

Again, putting personal feelings and reactions into their broader context is necessary. Things are being planned and orchestrated according to this square series, just as they were in the 1930s when we last experienced a series of squares between these two bodies. There is evil on this planet attempting to direct us into a death march, and the only way we don't succumb to the depression of this is to continually expose it, rip the mask off it, get pissed off about it, talk about it, laugh at it, and look at the ugly, ugly things it is doing so that we can break its hold and its manipulation wherever we can.

Getting to the deep-down emotional and psychological roots is necessary. Understanding the pathology of the structures, the power hierarchies, the relentless corporate pace, and understanding our natural reactions to that pathology, is necessary.

To get out from under the most detrimental weight of all this, we have to put it into context. We have to see it clearly. We have to stop blaming ourselves. We have to put our emotional and psychological reactions into their proper context until they don't seem insane at all. Until they seem downright valiant!

This upcoming week, if you do nothing else, break out of the current medical establishment mindset that makes individuals sick, damaged, and pathological without any correlations made to the sick, damaged, and pathological collective structures and ways of doing things.

Refuse the weight of this bullshit diagnosis. Refuse all the bullshit diagnoses. Don't make your emotional reactions to these upsetting times a bad thing, a wrong thing. Trust your emotional body, and follow its cues and impulses in order to stay the course.

Strength to you all, and keep your spirits up!