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Sep 20th
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Columns - Astrology

Burning Man: A ‘Welcome Home’

Burning Man: A ‘Welcome Home’

Thursday evening the Sun enters the disciplined Virgo, sign of gestating new states of consciousness. And always in time for Burning Man (Aug. 26 to Sept. 2), the radical arts community/temporary metropolis, in the playas of Nevada’s Black Rock Desert. Burning Man, with its ethos (spirit) of freedom and culture, organically begun in 1986 in San Francisco, is a field of survival (it’s 107 degrees) amidst creation—together building the new world. It’s irrational, primal, celebratory procession of humanity, days and nights of gritty dust under the Sun and stars, individually in communion. Its build, burn, dismantle—leave no trace. It’s shared community with rules, laws, ordinances, precepts and Principles.

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Columns - Astrology

Blue Moon—Second Full Moon, Leo Solar Festival

Blue Moon—Second Full Moon, Leo Solar Festival

This is our last week of Leo, sign of the “burning ground.” Leo does not stream into any planets (as other signs do). Leo instead streams through three fires of the Sun – the Central spiritual Sun (cosmic fire), the Heart of the Sun (Solar Fire), and the rays of the Sun (fire by friction). And directly into our hearts to create the Will-to-Good.
During Leo our love, strength, courage and service are tested (the “burning ground”) individually and  globally. It is only through such tests that our personality (individual and humanity’s) calls out to the Soul for help and direction. For Leo is the sign of the Soul. Through the tests our personality is transformed, sensitized and refined. The purifying fires and testing create in us (especially Leo) great sensitivity: 1) to the external environment, 2) to our personality wishes and desires, 3) to the Soul, 4) to Spiritual Will.

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Columns - Astrology

The Path to Sirius

The Path to Sirius

In Egypt the annual flooding of the Nile occurred as Sirius, the blue-white star left of Orion, became visible at sunrise. Rising over the dome of the pre-dawn sky, the simultaneous rising of Sirius and the floodwaters associated Sirius with fertility and life-giving abundance. The Nile deposited silt that grew the foods the Egyptians needed for the year. The Pyramids (Temples of Initiation) are aligned with Sirius.

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Columns - Astrology

Lammas—First Harvest

Lammas—First Harvest

Lammas, an ancient first-harvest festival of wheat and grains, is celebrated Aug. 1 in the northern hemisphere (southern hemisphere Feb. 1). Grains, ground into flour and made into loaves of bread (and communion bread) were later brought to village churches for blessing. Pieces of the blessed bread were then placed in barns to protect the remaining stored grain for the coming year. A primary part of the festival was reaping, a village celebration. 

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Columns - Astrology

All About Leo

All About Leo

We are under the influence of fiery Leo now, sign of individuality (at first), of focusing upon our self-identity, lifetime after lifetime. Leo is self-centering work. This is the developmental stage of the Leo individual building a sense of self (the personality). We (Leo) grow and grow just for ourselves. But then suddenly something new occurs. We become aware that other realities exist around us. A sort of unwinding occurs. Having become wound tight within ourselves, we begin, like petals unfolding, to turn outward toward the world of others. We see life differently.

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Columns - Astrology

Mercury Direct, Full Moon, Leo Solar Festival

Mercury Direct, Full Moon, Leo Solar Festival

Thursday is Nelson Mandela Day (b. July 18, 1918, South Africa). He has Sun, Jupiter and Pluto in Cancer (sign of liberation for the masses) with Uranus in Aquarius (freedom for humanity). We honor this man of courage, a cultural icon of freedom and equality imprisoned for 27 years. After his release (1990), Mandela created policies of reconciliation and negotiation. Mandela received the Nobel Peace Prize in 1993. As of this writing, Mandela’s health is in a critical state. Let us pray for him.


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Columns - Astrology

Mars in Cancer—A Slow Fast Dance

Mars in Cancer—A Slow Fast Dance

We’re in the very center of the Cancer’s Mercury retrograde. When planets reach the middle point of a sign we enter deeply into the energy of the sign (Cancer) the planet (Mercury) is distributing. When retros begin we’re a bit shocked. Then we eventually acclimate, adapting more each day. When the retro planet turns direct, we’re again shocked into a new reality, and must adapt to a new rhythm again. Humanity’s task is adaptation—becoming fluid and easy with change. It takes us lifetimes to adapt to new rhythms. When the Sun enters a new sign each month a new rhythm begins for humanity, with new tasks.

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Catwalk on the Wild Side

Meet the artists and designers behind this year’s edition of FashionART, SantaCruz’s most outrageous fashion show

 

The New Tech Nexus

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

 

Watch List

From Google to the government to data brokers, why your privacy is now a thing of the past

 

The Peace Equation

Sunday is the United Nations’ International Day of Peace, a global peace-building day when nations, leaders, governments, communities and individuals are invited to end conflict, cease hostilities, creat 24 hours of non-violence and promote goodwill. Monday is Autumn equinox as the Sun enters Libra (right relations with all of life). The Soul Year now begins. We work in the dark part of the year (Persephone underground) preparing for the new light of winter solstice. Tuesday to Wednesday is the Virgo new moon festival. We know two things about peace. “The absence of war does not signify peace.” And “Peace is an ongoing process.” In its peace-building emphasis, the UNIDP, through education, attempts to create a “culture of peace, understanding and tolerance”. Esoterically we are reminded of the peace equation: “Intentions for goodwill (and acting upon this intention) create right relations with all earth’s kingdoms which create (the ongoing process of) peace on earth.” At noon on Sunday, in all time zones, millions of participating groups will observe a moment of silence for peace on earth. Bells will ring, candles will be lit, and doves released as the New Group of World Servers recite the Great Invocation (humanity’s mantram of direction). To connect with others around the world see www.cultureofpeace.org    Let us join together with the mother (Virgo). Goodwill to all, let peace prevail on earth. The dove is the symbol for the day.
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Sweet Treats

Local cannabis bakers win award for cookies

 

What fashion trends do you want to see, or not see?

Santa Cruz  |  High School Guidance Counselor

 

Best of Santa Cruz County

The 2013 Santa Cruz County Readers' Poll and Critics’ Picks It’s our biggest issue of the year, and in it, your votes—more than 6,500 of them—determined the winners of The Best of Santa Cruz County Readers’ Poll. New to the long list of local restaurants, shops and other notables that captured your interest: Best Beer Selection, Best Locally Owned Business, Best Customer Service and Best Marijuana Dispensary. In the meantime, many readers were ever so chatty online about potential new categories. Some of the suggestions that stood out: Best Teen Program and Best Web Design/Designer. But what about: Dog Park, Church, Hotel, Local Farm, Therapist (I second that!) or Sports Bar—not to be confused with Bra. Our favorite suggestion: Best Act of Kindness—one reader noted Café Gratitude and the free meals it offered to the Santa Cruz Police Department in the aftermath of recent crimes. Perhaps some of these can be woven into next year’s ballot, so stay tuned. In the meantime, enjoy the following pages and take note of our Critics’ Picks, too, beginning on page 91. A big thanks for voting—and for reading—and an even bigger congratulations to all of the winners. Enjoy.  -Greg Archer, EditorBest of Santa Cruz County Readers’ Poll INDEX

 

Santa Clara Wine Trail

My memories of growing up in England include my mother pouring port after Sunday dinner—and sometimes a glass of sherry before dinner. My family didn’t drink much wine back then, but we certainly made up for it with the port and sherry.