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Feb 12th
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Columns - Astrology

“be(ing) of love (a little) more careful”—e.e. cummings

“be(ing) of love (a little) more careful”—e.e. cummings

Wednesday (Feb. 10) is Ash Wednesday, when Lent begins. Friday (Feb. 12) is Lincoln’s 207th birthday. Sunday is Valentine’s Day. On Ash Wednesday, with foreheads marked with a cross of ashes, we hear the words, “From dust thou art and unto dust thou shalt return.” Reminding us that our bodies, made of matter, will remain here on Earth when we are called back. It is our Soul that will take us home again. Lent offers us 40 days and nights of purification in preparation for the Resurrection (Easter) festival (an initiation) and for the Three Spring Festivals (at the time of the full moon)—Aries, Taurus, Gemini. The New Group of World Servers have been preparing since Winter Solstice.

The number 40 is significant. The Christ (Pisces World Teacher) was in the desert for 40 days and 40 nights prior to His three-year ministry. The purpose of this desert exile was to prepare his Archangel (light) body to withstand the pressures of the Earth plane (form and matter). We, too, in our intentional purifications and prayers during the 40 days of Lent, prepare ourselves (physical body, emotions, lower mind) to receive and be able to withstand the irradiation of will, love/wisdom and light streaming into the Earth at spring equinox, Easter, and the Three Spiritual Festivals.

What is Lent? The Anglo-Saxon word, lencten, comes from an ancient spring festival, agricultural rites marking the transition between winter and summer. The seasons reflect changes in nature (physical world) and humanity responds with social festivals of gratitude and of renewal. There is a purification process, prayerfulness in nature and in humanity in preparation for a great flow of spiritual energies during springtime.

Valentine’s Day: Aquarius Sun, Taurus moon. Let us offer gifts of comfort, ease, harmony, beauty and satisfaction. Things chocolate and golden. Venus and Taurus things.

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Columns - Astrology

Chinese New Year of the Red Fire Monkey

Chinese New Year of the Red Fire Monkey

Monday, Feb. 8, is Aquarius new moon (19 degrees) and Chinese New Year of the Red Fire Monkey (an imaginative, intelligent and vigilant creature). Monkey is bright, quick, lively, quite naughty, clever, inquiring, sensible, and reliable. Monkey loves to help others. Often they are teachers, writers and linguists. They are very talented, like renaissance people. Leonardo Da Vinci was born in the year of Monkey.

Monkey contains metal (relation to gold) and water (wisdom, danger). 2016 will be a year of finances. For a return on one’s money, invest in monkey’s ideas. Metal is related to wind (change). Therefore events in 2016 will change very quickly. We must ponder with care before making financial, business and relationship changes. Fortune’s path may not be smooth in 2016. Finances and business as usual will be challenged. Although we develop practical goals, the outcomes are different than hoped for. We must be cautious with investments and business partnership. It is most important to cultivate a balanced and harmonious daily life, seeking ways to release tension, pressure and stress to improve health and calmness.

Monkey is lively, flexible, quick-witted, and versatile. Their gentle, honest, enchanting yet resourceful nature results often in everlasting love. Monkeys are freedom loving. Without freedom, Monkey becomes dull, sad and very unhappy. During the Spring and Autumn Period (770 - 476 BC), the Chinese official title of Marquis (noble person) was pronounced ‘Hou,’ the same as the pronunciation of ‘monkey’ in Chinese. Monkey was thereby bestowed with auspicious (favorable, fortunate) meaning. Monkey years are: 1920, 1932, 1944, 1956, 1968, 1980, 1992, 2004, 2016.  

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Columns - Astrology

St. Brigid’s Day and Candlemas: Bowls of Fire

St. Brigid’s Day and Candlemas: Bowls of Fire

Festivals and feast days are rituals celebrated by all of humanity everywhere around the world, in all cultures and throughout all civilizations. Rituals focus our minds and hearts. They create rhythms. Rhythms and rituals help to balance the dark and the light. Rituals bring heaven to Earth. They anchor great ideals into our world. Rituals help humanity to maintain a focus on things of nature and of the spirit.

St. Brigid’s Day (Monday, Feb. 1) and Candlemas (Feb. 2) are both festivals that tell us we are in between winter and spring (cross-quarter days) and that spring is near. As St. Brigid holds a cross (wheel of time, the changing seasons) and a bowl of fire in her hands, Candlemas is a time of blessing and distributing candles—light in the midst of winter. Both St. Brigid’s Day and Candlemas occur in the sign of Aquarius—“the Light that shines in the dark, over the seas (emotional world), purifying the darkness (ignorance, fears, cruelties, etc.) until the dark is gone.” Both feast days are thus, in our esoteric occult world, Aquarian.

Candlemas (also called “Imbolc” [Celtic] and Groundhog Day) occurs 40 days after Christmas, when Hebrew infants were brought to the temple to be blessed and the mother purified (“mikvah” is Hebrew for purification, a holy bath). “And so, after 40 days Mary was purified in the temple.”

Forty days is esoterically a time of preparation for higher spiritual work. There are many biblical references to the number. All were purification times. We too “bathe” during this time. Purifying our bodies with sunlight, with cedar and sage, lavender and pine. We light our fires. We shed any darkness. We make scones with milk and butter. Soon, we know, the quince will bloom. 

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Columns - Astrology

“To Change Something, (we) Build a New Model” (Aquarius)

“To Change Something, (we) Build a New Model” (Aquarius)

The Sun enters Aquarius on Wednesday, Jan. 20. The energies shift and change in our unpredictable world. From the concretion (earth, mountains) of Capricorn (cardinal initiating sign) to the air of Aquarius, humanity’s sign of freedom, the future and the new age. Aquarius is ruled by Uranus. This means Aquarius works with Uranus, which offers humanity revelations, revolutions and “all things new.” Aquarius calls humanity to create the New Culture and Civilization, bring forth the New Education (based on astrology and the Ageless Wisdom Teachings), create the New Economy (the sharing economy), feed the world differently (bio-dynamic gardening, Steiner’s work), and come to the aid of suffering humanity. There are quotes we can ponder upon this month as the Sun in Aquarius streams into the Earth bringing with it the changing, new world Aquarian energies. Saturday, the moon is full, and Mercury is stationary direct on Monday.

From Buckminster Fuller on creating the new world, “You never change things by fighting the existing reality. To change something, build a new model that makes the existing model obsolete.”


From Ryokan (Zen Buddhist monk/hermit, poet) on serving suffering humanity, “Oh, that my priest’s robe were wide enough 
to gather up all the suffering people
 in this floating world.”

From Antero Alli (writer, astrologer, illuminator) on our present dislocated identity, “We know who we are. We are the dispossessed, the outcasts, and the outsiders, rebels with a cause … we renunciate dominator culture’s status quo … wavering in the fog of dislocation. Free-floating between old worlds and new, guided only by the shining paths of mother evolution … We have passed the point of no-return and since there is no turning back, we celebrate the momentum lifting us on the wings of perception, grace, and whatever skills we have earned … Only when we are over, does our real life begin. (“The Eight-Circuit Brain.”)

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Columns - Astrology

“I Have Been to the Mountaintop …”

“I Have Been to the Mountaintop …”

This is our last week of Capricorn. The Sun enters Aquarius next Wednesday, Jan. 20.  Then we will enter the Gate of Aquarius, sign of World Servers. Capricorn prepares us for the final two zodiacal signs. Aquarius, where we ‘serve.” And Pisces, where we “save.” Each of the signs impacts our evolutionary journey offering new revelations and new tasks. The 12 zodiacal signs, 12 Labors of Hercules, the Seven Rays, and the 12 planets are dedicated to humanity’s enlightenment, upliftment and evolution (Path of Return). Together they form the “Lighted Way.”

Capricorn, sign of the mountaintop, offers us the truth about our origins and identity. We are the daughters and sons of God, imbued with love, intelligence, courage, and strength. We are together servers and saviors of humanity. We are the diamond light. After a long journey (Aries to Capricorn) we reached the mountaintop, resting in the light of the rising sun. Gradually, from the valleys below, we began to hear increasingly the cries of suffering humanity. Eventually and together, we realized when Capricorn ended that we would return to Earth to help humanity. Our words as disciples this week absorbing the light of the sun are, “Next week we re-enter the Cancer Gates—returning to form and matter. Then the Gate of Aquarius appears, Aquarius, where we serve humanity. On the mountaintop, and on this last week of Capricorn, our words as disciples, speaking together, “Lost are we in light supernal yet we know that on this light we will turn our backs.” Entering Aquarius, to serve. And later, Pisces, to save.  

We remember the words of the great leader, Martin Luther King, Jr. (Capricorn), “I have been to the mountaintop and I’ve seen the future (the Promised Land).” King possessed the qualities of the disciple—joy, courage, vision, insight and steadfast devotion to the people. King, with the one-pointed focus of the unicorn, was also the “scapegoat, the sacrificial lamb and the awakened one.” (MLK’s birthday is observed Monday, Jan. 18.) 

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Columns - Astrology

Epiphany (Something New Appears), Retrogrades, New Moon

Epiphany (Something New Appears), Retrogrades, New Moon

Wednesday is the feast of Epiphany (Greek for “manifestation.”) Walking with the Three Astrologer Kings (world messengers) since Christmas, following a star (Sirius), seeking a newborn child, on Jan. 6, 12 days after Christmas, holding gifts of gold, frankincense and myrrh and the 12 signs, we discover the holy one. This discovery 2000-plus years ago changed our world. On Epiphany we make our Three Kings Cake.

We feel our lives changing this week. Thursday, Sun/Uranus square pulls us to the future (all things new). Thursday night Jupiter retrogrades (four months) offering us time to consider how to expand into that future, where and with whom? Capricorn offers new structures for the new culture and civilization.

Friday, Mercury retro re-enters Capricorn. Mercury, the messenger, offers gifts of discernment, discrimination, order, and organization. Mercury retro in Capricorn re-visits the question: How do we envision the new world and what gifts can we offer for this new creation? Venus joins Saturn Friday. Venus offers the resources needed to build the new structures (Saturn) for the new world. We just need to ask.

Saturday is Capricorn new moon. Everywhere the New Group of World Servers (NGWS) builds the new world for humanity. At new moon times we strengthen and support the endeavors of the (NGWS), reciting the Great Invocation together.

Tuesday, Venus trines Uranus. More change. Wednesday Sun trines Jupiter. An invitation to expand into the future. We are free, unencumbered, swimming together toward the rising sun. We ponder upon the Tarot card, the Hermit. We stand in wisdom. 

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Columns - Astrology

A New Year: Looking Back into the Future, plus Mercury and Jupiter Retrograde

A New Year: Looking Back into the Future, plus Mercury and Jupiter Retrograde

The new year of 2016 begins Friday. Adding the numbers 2+1+6 equals nine. Nine signifies endings, completion, fulfillment and a major initiation (all year) into a new cycle of learning. Mercury enters Aquarius on New Year’s Day. We step, for a moment, into Aquarius with its new laws and principles. All planets are in direct motion on Jan. 1. Planets-in-direction-motion means we move into the future more easily. This moment of moving forward (planets direct), however, ends Tuesday, Jan. 5, with Mercury turning stationary retrograde. Two days later, Thursday, Jan. 7, Jupiter also stationary retrogrades.

Two major retrogrades in a week at the beginning of the year overshadow the events of New Year’s. Retrogrades are important, surprising, magical times for humanity, offering a rest from usual ways of being. Mercury retrograde influences thinking and communication. Jupiter retro reminds us, “Love more, for love underlies all happenings in our world.”

Retrogrades (inner assessments) at the beginning of our new year set the tone for 2016, an election year. The retrogrades help us review, reassess, reevaluate, reexamine, and reanalyze which candidate is best to lead our country and the world. Which candidate is not involved with Monsanto, places humanity’s welfare ahead of business as usual, can be trusted, and speaks the truth?

The planets work primarily in mutable signs (Gemini, Sag, Virgo, Pisces) during 2016. Mutable signs offer specific experiences that build a vital and integrated personality, strong enough to follow the disciplines of the soul. In 2016, the themes for humanity are building a strong integrated personality, encountering the soul, reviewing the past, stepping into the future and experiencing a new cycle of learning. 

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Heart Me Up

In defense of Valentine’s Day

 

“be(ing) of love (a little) more careful”—e.e. cummings

Wednesday (Feb. 10) is Ash Wednesday, when Lent begins. Friday (Feb. 12) is Lincoln’s 207th birthday. Sunday is Valentine’s Day. On Ash Wednesday, with foreheads marked with a cross of ashes, we hear the words, “From dust thou art and unto dust thou shalt return.” Reminding us that our bodies, made of matter, will remain here on Earth when we are called back. It is our Soul that will take us home again. Lent offers us 40 days and nights of purification in preparation for the Resurrection (Easter) festival (an initiation) and for the Three Spring Festivals (at the time of the full moon)—Aries, Taurus, Gemini. The New Group of World Servers have been preparing since Winter Solstice. The number 40 is significant. The Christ (Pisces World Teacher) was in the desert for 40 days and 40 nights prior to His three-year ministry. The purpose of this desert exile was to prepare his Archangel (light) body to withstand the pressures of the Earth plane (form and matter). We, too, in our intentional purifications and prayers during the 40 days of Lent, prepare ourselves (physical body, emotions, lower mind) to receive and be able to withstand the irradiation of will, love/wisdom and light streaming into the Earth at spring equinox, Easter, and the Three Spiritual Festivals. What is Lent? The Anglo-Saxon word, lencten, comes from an ancient spring festival, agricultural rites marking the transition between winter and summer. The seasons reflect changes in nature (physical world) and humanity responds with social festivals of gratitude and of renewal. There is a purification process, prayerfulness in nature and in humanity in preparation for a great flow of spiritual energies during springtime. Valentine’s Day: Aquarius Sun, Taurus moon. Let us offer gifts of comfort, ease, harmony, beauty and satisfaction. Things chocolate and golden. Venus and Taurus things.

 

The New Tech Nexus

Community leaders in science and technology unite to form web-based networking program

 

Film, Times & Events: Week of February 12

Santa Cruz area movie theaters >
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Pub Watch

Mega gastro pub-in-progress at the Old Sash Mill, plus the best pasta dish downtown

 

How do you know love is real?

When you feel the groove in your heart and you’re inspired to dance. Becca Bing, Boulder Creek, Teacher

 

Temple of Umami

Watsonville’s Miyuki is homestyle cooking, Japanese-style

 

How would you stop people from littering?

Teach them from the time that they’re small that it’s not an appropriate behavior. Juliet Jones, Santa Cruz, Claims Adjuster