Past Insights and Reminiscing

Friday, Dec. 31, 2008 from newsletter
Dear One,

There is something so wonderful about the idea of a new year and a chance to wipe our slates clean and start over with a fresh new approach full of hope and positive energy! This is especially true after we have weathered the storms of a difficult year like 2008.

In numerology, the year number 2009 can be broken down in a few different ways. First, it is a 29, which represents a changing of the guard, along with some testing and transformation. The number 2009 also reveals the master number 11, which indicates a powerful year of change and inspiration ahead. The number 11 relates to new technological developments, scientific breakthroughs and the rapidly advancing spiritual evolution of humanity.

In 2009, I feel that we will continue to experience some uncertainty and instability in the world, especially in October. At least until mid-February 2009, we may continue to reverberate from past events. In March 2009, the United States Mars mahadasha will begin to stabilize, so that we may begin to feel some more positive movement forward, at least in terms of the economy and national morale. However, the potential for our collective insecurity and malaise may continue until Saturn leaves Leo in September.

The Lunar New Year culminates at the New Moon in Pisces in March 2009. The mundane horoscope for the 2009 Lunar New Year reveals further catharsis and upheaval on the material plane, but also the potential for auspicious transformation, balance and new growth.

The 2009 Lunar New Year chart has many similarities to the natal horoscope of Albert Einstein, which indicates that 2009 might very well be a year for amazing revelations, profound scientific discoveries, and deepening spiritual understanding that triggers an evolutionary leap in humankind.

I believe this will be a breakthrough year in technology, the science of consciousness and the evolution of thought. We will see more and more people embracing the emerging paradigm of transformation, which bridges modern quantum physics and the ancient metaphysical wisdom of the masters.

Many on the planet are now awakening to the truth of this paradigm, which is that reality is totally based on how we choose to observe it. The world we see is a manifestation of Divine Play, and we are the players as well as the One behind the play!

We have the potential to create heaven on earth when we embrace this higher truth of our being. As singer-songwriter Joni Mitchell said, “We are stardust...we are golden...”...we are the manifestation of divine love and grace!

I will soon be writing more about the various cosmic energies that are channeling onto the Earth in 2009, so please stay tuned to my web site in the coming weeks for astrological news here.

If you want to know how the 2009 Jupiter transit in Capricorn and the profound Capricorn eclipse in late January might specifically affect you, please email or call me for a new year's reading. I have a wait list of about 3-4 weeks so if you are interested, please contact me soon so that I can place your name on my list!

And finally, for my students and others who may be interested in studying astrology with me, I have decided to significantly lower my fees for private astrological tutoring. Please see my web site (Services) section for the updated fees: www.astralharmony.com/services.html

For New Beginnings
Oh God,

We thank you for this earth, our home; for the wide sky and the blessed sun, for the ocean and streams, for the towering hills and the whispering wind, for the trees and green grass.

We thank you for our senses by which we hear the songs of birds, and see the splendor of fields of golden wheat, and taste autumn's fruit, rejoice in the feel of snow, and smell the breath of spring flowers.

Grant us a heart opened wide to all this beauty; and save us from being so blind that we pass unseeing when even the common thorn bush is aflame with your glory.

For each new dawn is filled with infinite possibilities for new beginnings and new discoveries. Life is constantly changing and renewing itself. In this new day of new beginnings with God, all things are possible. We are restored and renewed in a joyous awakening to the wonder that our lives are and, yet, can be. Amen. (Appleseeds.org)

Love, light, and blessings of the New Year to you and yours!

Sunday, Dec. 21, 2008
Happy Solstice and Blessings of the Season! December 21, 2008 at 12:04 UT marks the Winter Solstice, the time when the Sun reaches its southernmost distance from the celestial equator and hence, the day when the Sun is lowest in the sky at noon (in northern latitudes).

Winter Solstice triggers a time in which the inner light is kindled in spite of outer darkness. It is a time to give birth to and awaken the higher self. Spiritual impulse is born anew within us, adding light and strengthening the love principle within our life.-Ted Andrews

The Sun's path directs the cosmic energies that bathe our planet. At the time of the Winter Solstice, the electromagnetic energies (kundalini) within the Earth shift direction, mirroring the movement of the Sun as it reverses its southern course and turns northward. For several days after the solstice, from December 21 until Christmas day, the Sun and the Earth seem to reach a still point in which the cosmic forces and kundalini energy of the planet are being renewed, integrated and stabilized. During this sensitive time, we each have the opportunity to go deep inside ourselves to rekindle the spiritual light. After this, between Christmas and January 6, the time on Earth speeds up a great deal.

According to Alice Bailey's esoteric astrology teachings:

.light from the Sun penetrates the outer atmospheric layers of Earth during the Autumnal Equinox, and at Winter Solstice, the light penetrates into the core of our globe. From a distance outside our solar system, Earth looks like a fiery sphere spinning in the heavens. During the Spring Equinox, the light once again is on the periphery of Earth, and at Summer Solstice, the light is high in the heavens. Note that the light is deep within the core of Earth during winter and high in the heavens during summer. This is both a metaphor and a reality on inner levels.

We can minister to our own personal psychology if we attune ourselves to the influences of the different radiances of light falling to Earth each month and during the solstices and equinoxes. Light waves descending to and ascending outward from Earth are an occult fact, meaning an inner reality not seen by most.

Those of us desiring a more complete communion with spiritual forces must come to intelligent terms with this reality, for it is the movement of these ever-changing currents of light poured upon Earth that provide our evolutionary growth. These surges of power propel all kingdoms on Earth upward, lift the spinal spirit fire of the body into the heart and head centers, and have the effect of providing illumination for those of us who have prepared through intelligence and intention to participate.

At the Winter Solstice, the Sun is always conjunct the Galactic Center at ~6 degrees Sagittarius. Thus, at this time, we are more apt to tune into and receive cosmic frequencies emanating from the Galactic Center, which is known as the Navel of Vishnu in the Hindu tradition. These energies from the Galactic Center are the power behind all intelligent life on Earth.

According to Alice Bailey:

One of the symbols for Sagittarius is a lighted lamp. This represents the Soul and its function of providing light to the individual on the Path. The light is an actual glowing phosphorescence created in the physical brain and is what is seen as a halo around the heads of saints. The metaphor of the lighted lamp in Sagittarius is actually the fire lit in the mind as the risen kundalini touches the pineal and pituitary glands. This is the physical aspect of the illuminated mind. When the individual has reached this realm, there is greater creativity, wisdom, guidance, and, most importantly, cooperation with the Plan of Hierarchy.

In Vedic astrology, Winter Solstice begins the Uttarayana cycle of the year, the Sun's more auspicious waxing half of the year. The chart for the exact moment of the solstice set in Washington, DC is below. It is extremely interesting and rare that the Rising Sign, the Ascendant or Lagna, is at 0 degrees and 32 minutes of Sidereal Sagittarius, close to the Galactic Center. This section of early Sagittarius is normally considered a highly charged and often perilous section of the zodiac known as the Gandanta. The focus on this particular area spanning late Scorpio and early Sagittarius (in the Sidereal zodiac) represents the difficult forces at play in the United States collective karma at this time. There will of course be ongoing struggles and adjustments on the material level.

The Washington, DC Solstice chart shows numerous indications that many people are focused on their own personal issues and security needs at this time. Pluto, Mars, the Sun and Mercury are forming a stellium or group of planets in Sagittarius. Pluto represents upheaval, transformation and mass tragedy when it is conjoined malefic Mars. Mars relates to armed forces, emergencies, violence, war and strife. The Sun signifies the soul of the people, as well as government, our leaders, banks and the stock exchange. Mercury is the planet of trade, commerce, civil services, treaties and contracts, industry, communication, transportation, food supplies, armed forces too (along with Mars) and epidemics. All four are conjoined the Ascendant in Sagittarius, a constellation that relates to foreign policy, commerce, travel, banks, militarism, law and religion.

The Ascendant, Mars, Pluto and the Sun are in the section of Sagittarius called Mula, "the root" nakshatra, which can be associated with an element of cruelty and destructiveness. Mercury is in the nakshatra known as Purvashadha, which has the power to invigorate. One can hope that this means the economy is on an upswing. The Moon located at 0 degrees Libra in the very lucky nakshatra of Chitra certainly does offer some optimism for not only the economy but more importantly, for a shift in collective consciousness toward greater harmony and compassion, which are represented by Chitra. However, Chitra brings back the focus to Mars on the Ascendant. This fiery planet rules over Chitra, but usually in his less aggressive and more creative aspect.

The chart reveals a bowl pattern that can reveal intensity and fanaticism, especially because many of the planets are angular. The Sagittarius planets are disposited by a debilitated (weakened) Jupiter in the second house of finance, and Jupiter is disposited by the cutting planet of the bowl pattern, Saturn. Saturn really stands out here also, as the most elevated planet in a detrimental square relationship with the first house stellium and opposite Uranus, planet of shocks and surprises.

Saturn has been transiting in Leo since November 2006 and will continue the same until September 2009. Saturn is not well placed in Leo, where it can create some potential for malaise, fear, misery, frustration and obstructed fortune. Saturn is in the nakshatra known as Uttara Phalguni, ruled by Aryaman, who is sometimes associated with zealots. This chart thus reveals some concern for terroristic threats and ongoing financial chaos. On the positive side, Saturn in Uttara Phalguni reflects some ability for us to fulfill our ambitions and create some material security.

According to Alice Bailey, The gate to the realms of Light opens the day of the Winter Solstice and remains open until the night of the Summer Solstice. Let us use this time to strengthen our connection with the Divine and bring more light into our troubled world:

The Great Invocation

From the point of Light within the mind of God
Let light stream forth into the minds of men.
Let Light descend to Earth.
From the point of love within the Heart of God
Let love stream forth into the hearts of men.
May Christ return to Earth.
From the center where the Will of God is known
Let purpose guide the little wills of men. The purpose which the Masters know
and serve.
From the center which we call the race of men
Let the Plan of Love and Light work out.
And may it seal the door where evil dwells.
Let Light, Love and Power restore the Plan on Earth.

(From the Tibetan Master Djwhal Khul, as written in the Alice Bailey texts).

Dec. 12 2008 Full Moon Doozy:

I previously wrote about the Full Moon of December 12, 2008 and the grand cross pattern in fixed/AKA “seismic” signs, with many signatures for seismic upheaval. I wanted to add that the Full Moon is also going to be a Super Moon, which is known to indicate intense tidal and seismic activity as well as extremes of emotional energy.

How does a Super Moon come into being, you might ask? Start with perigee, when the moon is closest in its orbit to the Earth, and add a little syzgy, when the moon is either New Moon or Full Moon (it will be Full on Dec. 12) and voila! You get a Super Moon! For more on this subject, I recommend Richard Nolle's excellent article on the topic at www.astropro.com/features/tables/cen21ce/mo-ap-2008.html

This perigee is very special as it will be the closest between the centers of the Moon and Earth since 1993 and until 2016. The Full Moon will appear to be exceptionally large, and as this one is occurring fairly close to the Winter Solstice, the Moon may appear especially high in the sky in areas north of the tropics close to midnight.
Happy Moon Gazing...om shanti, peace!

Sunday, Dec. 6, 2008
The coming Full Moon of Dec. 12, 2008 will fall in Taurus at ~27 degrees of sidereal longitude. This chart has multiple signatures for earthquakes, volcanic eruptions, or other kinds of disasters, as well as feelings of extreme stress, emotional tension and mental or physical rigidity. The Full Moon chart can reflect events occurring for several days preceding and after the exact Full Moon. Usually, the day or two before the Full Moon pulls the most intense energies. It is difficult to predict, but I wonder if it is more likely that an earthquake or other disastrous event, were it to occur, would occur closer to the 14th of December when the Sun is transiting in the dangerous edge between Scorpio and Sagittarius. Either way, it will be important to take it easy, go with the flow, and be willing to compromise in the coming weeks.

The following are some common astrological signatures for earthquakes and disasters that occur in the Dec. 12 Full Moon chart. I trust that Jupiter's ongoing trine with Saturn and the Moon's exalted status (in Taurus) will reflect some stability and grace, so that even if there is a major earthquake or disaster in the coming weeks, the potential for suffering and loss of human life will be mitigated.
1. All the planets (except the Moon, Saturn and Ketu/the Moon's South Node) are in minus declination. Declination is the measurement of the planets above and below the celestial equator.
2. Uranus and Saturn are not only in longitudinal opposition but are also contra-parallel and close to the equator. Saturn is +5/north and Uranus -5/south, which has the same kind of effect as a planetary conjunction.
3. The Sun, Mars, Mercury, Jupiter and Venus are parallel (close to the same declination, within a few degrees orb).
4. Mars is square Saturn and both are involved in a fixed grand cross pattern with Sun, Moon, Mercury, Pluto and Uranus. The fixed grand cross represents a source of extreme tension.
5. The Moon and several other planets (Venus, Jupiter, Neptune and Rahu, the Moon's North Node) are in earth signs, which is quite common in earthquakes and other geological disasters.
6. Mars is parallel Mercury (within a 2-degree orb).
7. Jupiter is sandhi (at edge of sign) in an earth constellation (Capricorn).
8. Mercury is conjunct Pluto in Mula nakshatra, which has the potential to be very destructive.
9. Saturn is inconjunct Neptune, a signature for disaster.
10. Not including the outer planets, the Moon is the only body outside the Kala Sarpa Yoga (lunar node formation).


Below is the Full Moon chart projected onto a map of the world. It reveals the areas where the planets are angular and thus, most powerful. Note that the areas of greatest tension may be those places where we see the convergence of angular lines of the grand cross planets-Mars, Sun, Mercury, Pluto, Saturn, Uranus and Moon, though in truth, determining an area of intensified seismic activity is difficult to pinpoint with astrology:

Near 110 E. Longitude through Eastern Russia, Mongolia, China, Southeast Asia, and Indonesia.
Near 19 E. Longitude through parts of Europe and Africa.
Near 158 W. Longitude near the Hawaiian Islands.
Near 71 W. Longitude in parts of South America.

(Click on map to view full size)

Sunday, Nov. 23, 2008
I have cast a chart for the New Moon on Nov. 27, 2008, set for Washington, DC at 11:54:35. This chart gives us a picture of karmic trends for the country and its people in the coming lunar month. There is a Capricorn Ascendant saddled between Neptune and Rahu, the Moon's North Node.

The Ascendant is the most important point in a chart, and is considered ill-fated when conjoined Neptune and Rahu, each of which is considered to exert some negative influence in Mundane astrology. Their placement so close to the Ascendant indicates potential for further political and socio-economic instability in this cycle. Neptune relates to big business, inflation, fraud, crime, deception, assassinations, government, insurance companies, hospitals, stocks, liquids and mob psychology. Rahu relates to violence, political plots, and epidemics. We of course will hear more about the economic meltdown. Perhaps also there will be some surprising news related to the airlines, as Rahu and Neptune are associated with aeronautics and the airline industry.

Saturn is the ruler of Capricorn, and thus is the ruler of this chart. Saturn occupies the problematical eighth house of jointly held finances, debts, taxes, death and transformation. Here, Saturn's placement reflects our chronic financial difficulties and frustrations as well as heavy obligations, responsibilities, and worries. Saturn has been transiting in Leo since Nov. 2, 2006, where it will remain until Sept. 10, 2009. Saturn in Leo has a restrictive influence on our ability to enjoy life, and is an indication of great fear, general pessimism, and malaise; is also a key factor in the current financial crisis; and reveals big problems for politics and politicians, stocks and investments, and manufacturing and sales (all considered to be Leo's domain). Having the chart ruler Saturn in the eighth house of the New Moon chart indicates that our national malaise and financial crisis have the potential to worsen in the coming month.

The good news is that Saturn trines Jupiter, which shows some ability to overcome these chronic challenges by cultivating an optimistic attitude and acting with discipline and common sense. Jupiter is in the 12th house conjunct Venus, which promotes peace and goodwill, charity and philanthropy. Volunteering or supporting your favorite charity and doing spiritual practices will pay off more than ever this month in terms of improving your mood and strengthening your peace of mind. There is a chance for foreign financial markets to improve this month, as well. We may hear more talk about another government stimulus package or new tax incentives. I do believe that the stock market could also begin to rebound, which is often seen when Venus and Jupiter trine Saturn.

The New Moon is in Scorpio, a constellation concerned with water, dams, floods, debts, industry, nuclear power and secret weapons, treachery, death and transformation, eruptions, secrets, sewage, hidden matters and surgery. Affairs related to any of these items could come into public focus now. On a more personal level, you may feel heightened sensitivity and creativity during this time, and also the possibility for deep spiritual devotion or a reaffirmation of your commitment to a cause about which you deeply care.

The Scorpio Moon is conjunct the Sun, Mars and Mercury, which intensifies the energies of Scorpio as well as those of the eighth house, which is Scorpio's natural abode. Also, these planets are in the nakshatra known as Anuradha, which is governed by Saturn (ruler of this New Moon chart), which occupies the eighth house!

Anuradha is a very sweet asterism within Scorpio, which is ruled by Mitra, the solar deity personified as a friend. I am grateful that this nakshatra presides over Thanksgiving Day this year, because it has a lighthearted, helpful, optimistic and group-oriented dynamic. This should be a good day to come together with your loved ones, if this is a holiday you celebrate. The Sun in Anuradha is helpful; the Moon feels happy and sociable here; Mars lends energy and practical organizational skill; but, Mercury can indicate some health issues, so just take extra care.

The Kala Sarpa Yoga (Snake of Time Combination), in which the Sun, Moon, Mercury, Venus, Mars, Jupiter and Saturn are locked inside the axis of the lunar nodes, is present in this chart, as it has been on and off for months. It will finally end on Dec. 4. This formation has the effect of intensifying events, reflecting financial turmoil, heightened anxiety, and some sense of chaos in the world. The wheel chart (below) shows the Bowl Pattern (Jones formation), which has some similar effect to the Kala Sarpa. This pattern reveals that our government is in a crisis mode and that many are feeling the lack of a strong foundation, as you will see the lower half/northern hemisphere, is completely void. We are seeking some stability, as also evidenced by a strong manifestation of the Fixed Modality.

In the New Moon chart, there is a noticeable weakness of the Air Element (Uranus is the only planet in an Air constellation), while the Water Element is strongly represented. This imbalance indicates a tendency to lack objectivity and be over-identified with illogical fears and emotions. This is a concern when we have already been witnessing the irrational herd behavior that drives the economic sectors from a base of mass panic.

With this strong Scorpio/eighth house focus, we can be overly sensitive unless we are using our sensitivity and compassion to help others. The plus side is that we may be able to tap into more energy for heightened intuition, spirituality, and creativity. Watch for extremes in behavior this month. Take good care of your health, and especially your immune and respiratory systems. Grief is the emotion associated with these systems, but when the Water Element is strong, we may have more ability and desire to naturally heal ourselves body and mind. This ties into the fact that the Ascendant is in Dhanishta, the 23rd nakshatra, which is associated with the completion of a cycle.perhaps this is time to let go of the past to make room for the New Year that is coming fast!

Speaking of fast, the planet of change-change-change, sudden awakenings and unforeseen events is stationing on the day of the New Moon! Since June 28, Uranus has been in its retrograde cycle, where it appears (from Earth) to be moving backward. It will appear to stop (station) and move forward at 11:08:34 EST on Nov. 27, within an hour before the New Moon. Uranus is still opposite Saturn (within an orb of ~2 degrees), so we may be in for more political and economic revelations and upsets. This aspect reveals some upheaval as we move toward reestablishing a new order.

Whenever a planet goes stationary (the day it changes direction from retrograde to direct, or visa versa), this reflects an escalation of the planet's energies. The Uranus station reveals the possibility of some catharsis or epiphany, a strong desire for change, and something new and different emerging in your world. You may feel some restlessness and get the boost you need to rise up out of the doldrums, especially if you have sensitive points in your natal chart around 24 degrees/45 minutes Sidereal Aquarius. Stay grounded (present in the Now).as this station can stimulate accidents or violence, especially if it is triggering malefic points in your natal chart.

Uranus is in the nakshatra of Purvabhadrapada, which is ruled by Saturn and Jupiter, so the Uranus station here stimulates the Jupiter-Saturn trine, igniting some kind of dramatic transformation or purification. Purvabhadrapada rules government, international trade, overseas banks, health care systems, investments, and stock markets.so it is likely that financial markets will fluctuate around the Uranus station. Sage Vashishta is the ruler of this asterism. He is one of the seven celestial rishis who watch over the galaxy, and he relates to wealth, so one might assume the financial fluctuations will show an up-trend. On Nov. 30, Pluto will conjunct the Galactic Center, which reflects a larger phase of cultural transformation that mirrors this month's cycle of change.

Om Lokah Samistah Sukhino Bhavantu (May All Beings be Happy and Free of Suffering).
Om Lokah Samistah Sukhino Bhavantu (May All Beings be Happy and Free of Suffering).
Om Lokah Samistah Sukhino Bhavantu (May All Beings be Happy and Free of Suffering).

Wednesday, Nov. 12, 2008
Thursday morning, November 13, at 1:17:19 AM EST, we have a Full Moon in (Sidereal) Aries. In Myths and Symbols of Vedic Astrology, Bepin Behari aptly describes the Moon as “a chalice for the downpour of the cosmic creative life force.linked with the psycho-physiological processes of human evolution” (p. 51). During Full Moon, these cosmic forces are surging, illuminating our paths and strengthening our creative and spiritual essence.

As the Moon affects the ocean tides, she also influences the neurological and hormonal tides within us, so that we may experience more intensity in our desires and emotions during this time of the Moon's greatest illuminating power. The Sun in Libra always opposes the Full Moon in Aries. This axis challenges us to establish right relationships, which may include setting good boundaries and really listening to our own inner truth without needing to seek approval from others.

The Full Moon represents the fruition of the Moon's monthly cycle and so is considered an opportune time for tuning into our visions and dreams and giving them a new expression. This is also a good time for completing our projects and finalizing plans. The lunar radiance sheds light on what is blocking us and what we might be able to release in terms of unhealthy habits, detrimental beliefs, old hurts, or even those relationships that might no longer be serving our best interest. In other words, the Full Moon is all about letting go and letting be.

Speaking of letting go, this particular Aries Full Moon is a wonderful time for fire rituals in which you make offerings to the spirit of fire and ask to burn karmic seeds of the past. Whether you actually participate in a Vedic yagya, puja or homa, or if you just want to do your own ritual at home, the energies of this Full Moon are ripe for it. This is because the Full Moon is in the nakshatra of Aries called Krittika, which is ruled by Agni, the Vedic deity of fire power. Exactly opposite the Moon in Krittika is the Sun, in the nakshatra known as Vishakha, which is also ruled by Agni. Krittika is symbolized by a fire or razor that can be destructive as well as creative. Vishakha represents transformation and creative power, so the combination of these two nakshatras is perfect for clearing away the past to make room for new and perhaps more positive forces in our lives.

As an example of a sacred fire ritual that you can perform on your own, you could write a heartfelt letter to someone with whom you feel unresolved conflict, deeply releasing yourself and this individual from all that is now past. Then, burn the letter while invoking a pillar of light to come down from the divine realms of spirit, keeping in mind that the fire you are burning is itself part of Agni, a sacred being. Ask that whatever uncooked seeds (samskaras) remain between you and this other individual will be consumed in the fire of purification, so that you are cleansed and released from any negativity or hurt from the past. You will need to burn this in a large fireproof container outside. I recommend performing this ritual at sunset (if possible on Thursday) while the Full Moon is rising. Let the fire consume itself and when it is completely burnt out, bury the ashes with care.

Other ways to work with the fire energy of this Aries Full Moon include spiritual practices like yoga and meditation. In these practices, we can hold a clear intention that the kundalini/inner fire matrix will burn up our karmas, transmute our mental fixations, and strengthen our inner courage and vitality so that we can move forward and achieve our goals. The Full Moon in November is the Beaver Moon, and interestingly, the symbol of the Beaver Totem is all about putting dreams into focus and reality. The power of this Full Moon in Aries in the spiritual nakshatra of Krittika can help us release the past and manifest our goals in alignment with great wisdom, universal love and oneness.
Happy Full Moon!


Tuesday, Nov.11, 2008 Special Announcement
2008 Presidential Election Follow-Up: My friend and eminent Vedic astrologer Edith Hathaway called it right and Obama won. For astrologers and non-astrologers alike, her Election Postscript is an interesting read. Some astrologers have been questioning the correct birth time for Obama, since some didn't think he could win with this chart. Edith addresses this point in her Election Postscript and says that the overriding translation of events comes from the nimittas (omens), combined with her study of the Jupiter-Saturn cycles and election cycles. Edith still is not fully convinced of the latest birth time for Obama (7:24 PM), even with a birth certificate. And over the course of the year we had changes in the birth times of all three leading candidates which made this a difficult call. Good job prognosticating, Edith! Here is the link to her Election Postscript: www.29eagles.com/election/edith/edith6_post_election.html

Saturday, Oct.25, 2008
I have tried to avoid writing much about the nasty business of the upcoming United States Presidential election since political astrology is not my forte, and I am at heart a libertarian who generally eschews politics. My friend Edith Hathaway, on the other hand, is a well-known political astrologer who has plenty to say about who will win this election and why. You can read her excellent detailed comments and updates and download a 53-minute mp3 file of one of her lectures at www.29eagles.com/election/edith/index.html

Edith predicts a win for Obama, though I still feel McCain could win. Edith bases her arguments on much more thoughtful, thorough and comprehensive astrological analysis than I have given this subject. Other political astrologers have weighed in on both sides. I think that a lot of astrologers have been stymied in their predictions because the candidates' birth records have been in question, but now, finally, we supposedly have the accurate records.

Edith and other astrologers make predictions based on other charts besides just those of the candidates' natal horoscopes, for instance, they look at announcement charts; Election Day charts; other standard mundane charts; and even inaugural day charts. It is not an easy call and really, the best astrologers are only 70% accurate. Looking at the most recent polls, it sure looks like Edith's prediction could be the accurate one.

However, just for fun, I will present an opposing view based on the lunar charts of the candidates' wives. I predicted the 2004 election by studying the birth charts of the candidates' wives, but matters are different this time because we do not have birth times for the wives as we did for the 2004 election. Thus, I have had to erect lunar charts for the wives, using the Moon as the Ascendant (Chandra Lagna), which can be quite telling but not nearly as precise as the natal charts we usually erect based on the exact time of birth.

Cindy McCain is running the great cycle (mahadasa) of Rahu, the Moon's North Node, which is a planet indicating the possibility of worldly success and even political rise in her life. The fact that transit Jupiter is conjunct her natal Rahu and activating some powerful combinations (yogas) in the 1/7 axis of her Chandra Lagna chart may bode well for her husband's rise to power. Michelle Obama is running the great cycle (mahadasa) of Saturn, which is in the 12th house conjunct the Sun in her Moon chart. The 12th house is often considered a house of weakness, loss and endings. The day of the election, the transit Moon will be passing through her 12th house. Neptune is also transiting there and almost conjunct her natal Saturn, which could indicate some kind of confusion, loss or disappointment.

There are potentially dangerous and disruptive forces at play for both candidates and for the political process, as well, so my greatest focus is to pray and send light to the process as often as I can with the intention that ultimately, the best individuals will be chosen for the job.

It appears that the world's economic turmoil will continue for some time based on larger transformational astrological cycles that will be going on through the coming year(s), which we have discussed before, including the Saturn-Uranus opposition and the Pluto transit over the Galactic Center and the United States Ascendant. However, the new mahadasa of Mars should begin to stabilize by April 2009, and because of the characteristics of this current dasa, I still have a good feeling about foreign stock trading-commodities, natural resources, tech companies and utilities-executed directly on the foreign exchange where the stock is being held, such as in Canada, Norway, Hong Kong or Singapore.

The United States (Kelleher) chart (below) reveals what is happening on a national and even global economic level, as it reflects our collective karma. This chart is undergoing a difficult transit of the lunar nodes (Rahu and Ketu) in the 2/8-Capricorn/Cancer axis, which relates to our current state of economic and emotional security. The lunar nodes represent the shadow issues that we must bring to light, the heavy karmas that are being enacted in our lives. The transit that is applying now (within 5 degrees), which will be exact on Jan. 1, 2009, is called the "nodal inversion," in which the transiting lunar nodes are flip-flopping their positions with the natal positions of the lunar nodes. This is also the karmic axis in which we are experiencing the current series of 6-month eclipse patterns. This inversion transit brings the potential for emotional and financial uncertainty as well as shocking turnarounds, upheaval, catastrophes, and a significant change in direction.

The last solar eclipse in August 2008, under whose aura we are still operating, involved a massive force of dissolution reflected by transiting Ketu in Cancer, placed in the 8th house of the US Kelleher chart (debt, tribulations, and transformation), which mirrors much of the emotional fear and economic chaos we have been experiencing in the world lately. The next solar eclipse will be on Feb. 9, 2009, in the constellation of Capricorn. There will actually be a big lineup of planets in Capricorn in the eclipse, including Rahu, always exactly opposite Ketu, and more expansive and productive than Ketu, in a worldly sense.

There was a similar Capricorn eclipse in 1962, after which the US economy achieved new records in sales, production, employment, and income, as it continued to recover from the recession of 1960 and early 1961. Capricorn is a constellation ruled by Saturn, the old conservative task-master who wants to consolidate and pare down, make us "tighten our belts" and become more cost-effective and industrious. Capricorn can find practical solutions to big problems. Jupiter will be part of the eclipse stellium and will be in Capricorn in late 2008 and through most of 2009, which signifies the potential for a cultural shift toward more productivity; frugality; and sensible, prudent behavior. The key expression for Capricorn is, "I use," so the trend in coming months will be to work hard and stay focused in order to achieve our goals. The impending Capricorn energy wave can help us discover innovative ways to manifest our heart's desire in the coming year.

One big difference in the 1962 eclipse was that Saturn was involved in the Capricorn lineup of planets, which added to the ability for steady growth of business, whereas in the 2009 lineup, Saturn will still be in Leo, where it is weak and reflects a tendency for depression and pessimism. We can change that part though, remember!

I will write more about the Feb. 2009 eclipse later because I do have some concerns, in that the Capricorn eclipse will activate Ketu (and Pluto) in the US (Kelleher) chart, as it did on Feb. 4, 1962, when Castro presented his Second Declaration of Havana, which set the stage for the Cuban Missile Crisis in October 1962, when we came to the brink of World War III.

The Buddha said, "With our thoughts, we make the world." Think positive and loving thoughts and we can overcome anything! Most importantly, give yourself a good, deep belly laugh at least once a day. This alone can do wonders for your mood as well as your health. Studies have shown that laughter improves the body's ability to ward off infection and disease. Laughter also helps to shift your mind and energy system away from negative thoughts and vibrations of doom and gloom. Let's remember to choose the stream of well-being instead!

Saturday, Oct.18, 2008
Feeling antsy or anxious lately? It only takes a few minutes to energetically ground and center your energy so you can feel better!

Sit in a comfortable position, close your eyes, and take several deep cleansing breaths, inhaling rainbows of light and well being, and exhaling whatever it is you need to let go of now. You need not name “it” or even know what “it” is. Just trust your Higher Self to help you release what is blocking you from the infinite stream of well-being here and now.

Move your attention to the bottom of your spine under your tailbone in the base (Muladhara) chakra, and imagine a brilliant ruby-reddish-pink ball of light rotating there in a clockwise position. Breathe into this light and fill your whole being with this magnificent, radiant light. Continue breathing out tension and whatever else you want to release-any thoughts, worries, or we can just call it “stale energy.”

Slowly imagine a cord of ruby light emanating out of the ruby ball and extending down between your legs, through the floor, down into the ground beneath you, and even deeper through all the layers of the earth until it meets the solid iron core at the center of our planet. Feel yourself connecting with this core. Attach your energy cord to this core and begin breathing the energy back up from the center of the earth all the way up into the ball of ruby light at the base of your spine. Feel your connection to Mother Earth. You and She are One.

Breathe in and draw the ruby light up your spine and out through the top of your head, and then exhale, shooting the light out to the sky and deep into the universe where it meets and blends with pure white divine light. Pull this blended light back down into the top of your head and inhale it all the way down your spine into the ruby ball at your base chakra under your tailbone. Once again, run the energy down into the earth and then back up and out the top of your head, using your breath and intention to move the light. Hold the intention that this healing light is helping to restabilize, balance and empower you.

You can run the energy like this a few more times and then, complete this exercise by pulling divine white light down through your head and into your spine and out to the front of your body behind your breastbone in the heart chakra. Take a few more deep breaths in and out of your heart center, and rest here for a while, breathing in peace and trusting that all is very well. Give thanks for the beauty that is you, the Divine I Am Presence that is all-abiding and ever ready to assist you in your earthly journey and beyond. When you are ready, slowly open your eyes.

Monday, Oct.13, 2008
For those interested in astrology, I wanted to share one more point regarding my previous post about the Jones formation chart and the cutting or leading planet being the Moon's South Node, Ketu. What makes this even more challenging an aspect is that Ketu always moves retrograde (backwards) when we use the traditional Mean Nodes, as I do.

Retrograde planets, like the lunar nodes as well, represent something that we need to overcome within our nature, in a worldly sense. It is also true that retrograde planets are more under the conscious influence of the native and we have to activate these planets through conscious desire and effort; otherwise, their effects will remain latent or dormant.

However, this creates a paradox when we are working with the energies of Ketu, because Ketu represents our instinctual nature that is not readily put under conscious control. Thus, Ketu and specifically this current transit reveal a feeling of being ensnared by powerful forces of fate.

In this Jones formation chart that I posted below, whether we call it a Bowl or Locomotive, the cutting planet is moving in an opposite course from the other planets, which gives a sense that we are not moving in a positive or forward direction. We have a Full Moon in Pisces coming up on Tuesday, which should help to break this trend. This will be a good time for healing, loving, being creative and doing spiritual practice, letting go of the past, and really just working your magic in the world.
Happy thoughts!

Saturday, Oct.11, 2008
For anyone interested in certain finer points of astrology, I have posted a wheel-style horoscope calculated for the transits in Washington, DC, for Sat., Oct. 11, 2008. Note that in mundane horoscopy, we often create a chart for the capital city of a country since that place defines its governing body and thus the spirit of the nation. Such a chart can reflect the collective karma for a particular moment or cycle in time.

This chart is calculated using the Sidereal zodiac (Lahiri Ayanamsha), and has an interesting formation called the “Locomotive.” This chart dynamic has been in effect since late Sept. and will be in effect until early next week.

You can see in the attached chart that all the houses or signs are filled by planets on one side, leaving nearly 1/3 of the chart empty. The name “Locomotive” was given to this particular type of formation by the late Western astrologer Mark Edmund Jones, who named various patterns that are often dubbed "Jones Patterns." This Locomotive formation has been compared to the wheel of an old fashioned steam locomotive, which was dynamically imbalanced on purpose in order to drive the engine. That is also a metaphor for the way this configuration works according to astrology...the universal forces at play seem to be dynamically imbalanced in order to drive the engine of fate.

Now, my friend, astrologer Haizen Paige, kindly wrote and told me he thinks this formation is more of a Jones Bowl than a Locomotive. However, the Moon's South Node (Ketu) takes the configuration past the classic Bowl, which is traditionally formed with an opposition at its rim, so I believe this pattern is somewhere between the two configurations. I do believe this is a moot point anyway, since either way, the chart dynamic shows some imbalance, extremism and intensity, and in both shapes, we still have a leading planet pulling the rest of the chart. Similarly, both relate to the Kala Sarpa Yoga (the Serpent of Time combination that creates tough karmic lessons), which is in and out of effect until Dec. 18, in which all the planets go inside the nodal axis for 2 weeks and then out for 2 weeks, etc.

The way to find the most important planet in the Locomotive or Bowl horoscope is to start at the empty space and then move counter-clockwise to the first planet or celestial body you come to. That planet, known as the cutting or leading planet, is the most important one in the chart. It describes the essence of the chart and the driving force behind it.

In the current mundane chart, Ketu (the Moon's South Node) is the cutting planet. It is actually not a planet but an astronomical point in space, but we can call it a planet for this discussion, especially since Indian astrologers believe that the lunar nodes are just as important, if not more so, than the actual planets. In Vedic astrology, the planets, the lunar nodes and the luminaries (Sun and Moon) are called the grahas (graspers) because they reflect how human beings are grasped by our karmas.

So, Ketu is leading the rest of the chart with its agenda. Ketu in Vedic traditions is considered the eldest of the planets and represents the contracting collective force behind large-scale events, including tumultuous situations like the current economic crisis on our planet.

Ketu relates to fear and intense emotional states, especially when Ketu is found in water signs as it is now (in Cancer). Ketu also represents sudden gains and losses and fated karmic events that are seemingly beyond our control.

Ketu is transiting in a section of Cancer in the nakshatra known as Ashlesha, which on a higher level relates to the mystical power behind cosmic evolution. Ashlesha relates to snakes, and more so to the Nagas, ancient reptilian overlords who personify profound occult power and wisdom. Just like a snake periodically molts, i.e. sheds its old skin, so does Ashlesha represent the necessity of periodic purification and rebirth. On a mundane level, Ketu's transit here can signify deception, losses, trouble, and danger, but on an evolutionary level, it reflects our potential to rise above worldly illusions and realize great wisdom, strength and even prosperity. Ketu is the moksha karaka, indicator of enlightenment, so even though it can reveal material losses, it can also indicate spiritual gains.

The world is going through a purification and renewal, and we see this in so many of our current astrological transits and cycles, including the transit of Ketu, planet of past karma, in Ashlesha. Ketu is the most unpredictable graha (planet), and Ashlesha is also extremely unpredictable, so events in this period may be unsettling, upsetting and surprising. But, rest assured that a new and better world is in the making when we make it so.

His Holiness the Dalai Lama says, “When you think everything is someone else's fault, you will suffer a lot. When you realize that everything springs only from yourself, you will learn both peace and joy. Pride leads to violence and evil. The truly good gaze upon everything with love and understanding.” In a truly new paradigm, we would follow this sage advice, taking responsibility for what is happening in the world and no longer projecting blame onto others.

Please keep your immune systems strong and face down fear because this transit of Ketu can engender mass panic, which many healers believe is a psychic force behind infectious pandemics and mass calamities.

Friday, Oct.10, 2008
Paramahansa Yogananda once said, “When there is harmony with the divine workings of creation, problems will solve themselves. It is as simple as that-and as difficult as that.” The solution to difficult times such as we are experiencing now is ultimately in our hands, as it is our choice to choose fear and divisiveness or to choose love and faith. Clearly at this time, the mass mind weighs in favor of the negative power, which is so obviously reflected in the crashing world financial markets that are driven by fear and pessimism.

Astrologically, there are always going to be challenging cosmic events happening in both short and long-term cycles. Astrologers have a variety of ways of looking at these aspects and events. For instance, I have mentioned before the approaching opposition of Saturn and Uranus, which will be exact on Election Day but which we are feeling already. This is a classic aspect reflecting tremendous pressure between existing and changing structures, which can result in explosive events.

In late November, transiting Pluto will exactly conjunct the Galactic Center (~6 deg.) for its third pass in the past year. Pluto has moved across the Galactic Center and then retrograded back across it twice, and this will happen two more times before it starts to really move on past the Galactic Center in late 2009. Pluto is also nearing ever closer to the Ascendant (most powerful point) of the United States (Kelleher) chart (at ~9 deg. Sagittarius). In this period, Pluto is transiting across the Nakshatra of Mula (0-13 deg./20 min. Sagittarius), ruled by Nritti, goddess of transformation. Any planet that conjuncts the Galactic Center becomes very significant, and Pluto's transit brings the potential for turmoil and upheaval, since it brings to the surface that which needs to be let go of and changed. So we have already been in this cycle and it will continue on for another year.

The United States chart is in process of shifting major cycles (dasas), which also brings a period of instability, uncertainty and change.

Mercury has been retrograde since Sept. 25, when it stationed at ~29 deg. Virgo, very close to the US Kelleher chart Midheaven, a power point in the chart (at ~2 deg. Libra), and also fairly close to natal Saturn (at ~24 deg.) in the tenth house. Mercury is a planet of business and communication, and its retrograde movement here in the tenth house close to natal Saturn (planet of obstacles and difficulties/also the ruler of the 2nd house of finances) reflects the current state of economic confusion, fear and decline. The tenth house in Mundane Astrology represents big business; government; national integrity, etc. Retrograde Mercury is instigating a feeling in the collective mind of being stuck, obsessed with fear, depressed or at least somewhat unsure about what is happening. Mercury will station and begin to move forward on Oct. 16, which can create some relief, but it will not pass directly over Saturn until Oct. 24, after which there could be some more positive movement and relief.

The United States chart is also approaching the Nodal Inversion transit, in which the transiting North Node will conjunct the South Node of the US chart and vice versa. This is applying now (using an orb of 5 degrees), but will be exact on Jan. 1, 2009. This transit has the effect of creating significant reversals of fortune and changes in plans. so keep holding onto your hats. This transit is taking place in the financial axis of the US chart, and always indicates a cycle of completion and the possibility of a fresh new beginning after some upheaval, as this transit has the potential to root out some of our collective greed. The aspect is always most intense while applying toward the conjunction (between now and Jan. 1, 2009).

Yesterday, I received emails from two of my colleagues who had something positive to say about the astrological forecast. What a treat that was to hear good news for a change! Sadasiva (Sam Geppi) reminded us that between now and early November, Jupiter and Saturn will be in a trinal arrangement. Sadasiva writes, “Both Jupiter and Saturn are planets of long-term destiny. Jupiter gives optimism and hope; Saturn gives determined effort towards our goals. Both of these things need to be working in harmony with each other if we are to have long-term success. Saturn gives us the determination and Jupiter gives us the hope to overcome those obstacles and also the uplifting and inspired vision.” www.vedicastrologycenter.net/blog/astrology-forecast/jupiter-and-saturn

Komilla Sutton writes, “The New Year of 2009 should begin with a different attitude. Jupiter in Capricorn will also help to stabilize, as it is a practical Jupiter that controls the markets and gives steadiness by being very conservative.” www.komilla.com/pages/fromKomilla.html

As always, even with astrology, it is clear that we have the choice how to react to current conditions and more importantly, we can change things we do not like. The Buddha said, “With our thoughts, we make the world.” Instead of fear and panic, let's choose the stream of well being instead. If we all really do this, we can shift the paradigm to a more positive reality.

Sunday, Oct.5, 2008
For those interested, here are the instructions from Christan at EarthTransitions.com re: how to participate in the Net of Light meditation that I mentioned in my previous post:

Thank you for your interest in casting the Net of Light for the new spirit of America held every Tuesday at 6pm Pacific Standard Time through the month of October. Please save this call in information as it will be the same for each of the calls.

If you have not done so, please read the original message given to Sharon McErlane about this project at: www.earthtransitions.com/content/view/193/1/

The meditations are free of charge, but you will need to pay for the cost of the long distance call. If you do not have an inexpensive long distance service, you can join SKYPE and get a discounted internet phone rate. Just check out: www.skype.com for details.

The call in line will be opened at 5:50 pm PST each night allowing people to come on and introduce themselves before we begin. Then at 6pm the moderator will sign on and we will begin our meditation which takes about 20 minutes. To check out what time that is in your time zone, go to: www.timeanddate.com/worldclock/converter.html

After the meditation, there will be an opportunity for some open discussion and sharing of what people experienced. Then we will resume and being the energy work on project specific area to shift the hologram to align more fully with the downpour of light coming into the system.

When our energy work session is concluded, the conference line will be kept open for 15 more minutes allowing people to share among themselves what they have experienced.

The dial in number is: 1-218-936-4700

After you dial in, you will be instructed to enter your access code. It is: 431940

If you cannot join us in person, please print out the meditation listed on our site and tune into it when you are able. Each person who holds this intent consciously adds to its potency.

Looking forward to meeting you in the conference soon.


Friday, Oct.3, 2008
Scores of reputable astrologers have been discussing the impact of the coming astrological opposition between transiting Saturn and Uranus, which will be exact on Election Day and then again several more times in the coming year and a half. Saturn represents the status quo and Uranus signifies a revolutionary force of upheaval and transformation. This oppositional aspect is one of many astrological conditions reflecting the turbulence of our times.

We are now feeling the effects of this approaching aspect as it becomes stronger each day leading up to the election. As reflected by this face-off between Saturn and Uranus, we are feeling and experiencing powerful conflict and uncertainty within ourselves and in our world.

The opposition in astrology is a 180-degree aspect that can indicate tremendous tension, growing pains and a feeling of “do or die.” The opposition between Saturn and Uranus has even more complex layers of meaning. On a mundane level, it represents the economic crisis and the drama of the current United States Presidential race. Some astrologers predict that the Democrats will win the White House because in this current transit, Uranus, representing a change of party, is stronger than Saturn, representing the established party. Some astrologers surmise that there will be unforeseen and possibly violent or tragic events related to the candidates or the election.

Saturn is a significator of the established order and the economy, and its opposition with Uranus reflects the colossal economic crisis facing the world now. Saturn also refers to wars and epidemics, and Uranus' aspect may be a sign of upcoming threats to public safety.

An examination of the sign placements of Saturn and Uranus is even more illuminating. At the time of the election and the exact opposition of Saturn and Uranus, Saturn will be in Sidereal Leo at 25 degrees in the nakshatra (lunar sign) of Purva Phalguni, and Uranus will be in Sidereal Aquarius at 25 degrees in the nakshatra (lunar sign) of Purva Bhadrapada.

In Mundane Astrology, Saturn's transit in Purva Phalguni reflects the economic turmoil and massive plan to nationalize many of the financial institutions in the United States. Similarly, Uranus in Purva Bhadrapada relates to the commotion we are seeing in government and financial organizations. Uranus as the planet of revolution in the sign of secret societies (Purva Bhadrapada) reveals that the shocking economic events taking place right now may have been orchestrated by a diabolical secret government, whose motto is Ordo Ab Chao, “Out of Chaos Comes Order.” This is an Orwellian concept similar to “Reality Control,” in which the puppet masters engineer a crisis in order to establish control.

I expect further shocking and perplexing events to take place in coming weeks and months as the opposition between Saturn and Uranus moves in and out of focus. Purva Bhadrapada not only rules secret societies and hidden directives, but on a higher level it reflects the power of purification that is a necessary dynamic in the eternal battle between good and evil.

Uranus acts with destructive force only when there is resistance to change. We can work to overcome such resistance within our own psyches. When we face and embrace our repressed shadow issues, we can bypass much of the drama and trauma of this kind of disruptive Uranus transit and experience its nature more on an inner level through enlightening insights.

Internally, we may experience this transit as discord, fear and self-pity. However, it is our personal choice moment by moment whether we want to follow the path of love and compassion or the path of aggression and fear. Especially in these unstable times, we can benefit from keeping our mind focused in the present moment and harnessing the powers of compassion and equipoise.

I am not a political astrologer and leave this pursuit to the many clever ones who seem to relish this subject. I personally do not resonate with the divisive polarization that takes place in the political realm. I also believe that the Secret Government keeps us hypnotized by the false belief that we have a choice between two candidates, when really both are just two sides of the same Illuminati coin. The “us verses them” mentality that is an integral part of politics represents a false reality that perpetuates our negative collective karma.

I believe that the opposition between Saturn and Uranus has much greater implications than just a showdown between two political factions and one election. To me, this astrological event represents the possibility of a paradigm shift that goes way beyond partisan politics. It reflects a choice that we can make to rise above the illusion of duality and instead embrace the truth that we are all ultimately One Soul living on a very precious planet. The gift of Uranus versus Saturn is to help us shift the mass mind's reality. The sooner we learn to let go of enmity and instead love and cherish one another, the sooner we will heal and create “real change.” I pray that all beings will wake up and remember this truth.

In line with these thoughts, I want to highly recommend Christan Hummel's “Special Net of Light Meditations” this month. For more information, please visit Christan's web site at www.earthtransitions.com or email: info@earthtransitions.com

This meditation will take place every Tuesday night in October from 6pm -7 PM PST. The next meditation will be Tuesday, Oct. 7th, at 6 PM PST.

Join Christan in casting the Net of Light for the United States at this important time in Her history. The Feminine spirit of America is on the verge emerging creating a rebirth of consciousness in the fields of politics and economics. Help our leadership to receive the messages from their heart and their conscience and respond to these new vibrations with courage and conviction.

Each meditation will have a 30-minute follow up session with Christan to shift the holographic matrix of the political and financial systems to align them with their highest potential. Please pass this message onto all who are ready to become a part of the CHANGE happening in America. A few people unified in a spirit of love CAN make a difference. Now is the time to come together and call on the Divine to intervene and infuse our leaders, and the systems they work within.

Sept.27, 2008

Ya Devi Sarva Bhuteshu, Matri Rupena Samsthita, Namastasyai, Namastasyai, Namastasyai, Namo Namah! I Bow to the Supreme Goddess who Abides in all Beings in the Form of the Mother. To that Great Mother of all Things, I Bow Again and Again!

Sept. 30 to Oct. 8, 2008 marks the Hindu festival of Navaratri ("Nine Nights"), also known as Durga Puja. During these nine nights and ten days, nine forms of the female divinity are worshipped. Navaratri occurs four times a year. Two of these festivals are considered more minor celebrations and are called gupta, or hidden. The other two more significant festivals occur near the equinoxes, which are crucial astrophysical turning points when our bodies and minds undergo dramatic energetic and physical readjustments. This celebration provides an opportunity to give thanks and receive the blessings of our Holy Mother. It is said that She comes down and walks among us during this period.

The dates of Navaratri are calculated according to the lunar calendar. The autumn festival is known as the Maha Navaratri (Great Navaratri), or the Sharad Navaratri, which begins on the first day of the waxing (bright) lunar cycle in the month of Asvina or Aswayuja, which always occurs in either September or October. In many years (including this year in 2008), Navaratri coincides with the Jewish high holy days, from Rosh Hashanah to Yom Kippur, the Day of Atonement, ten days later.

According to yogic and Tantric traditions, the female divinity is known as Ma Shakti, the personified female creative force who is the source of the entire universe. She manifests many characteristics throughout several of the world spiritual traditions. In just a few examples, as raw creative power and energy; warrior; Mother Earth; youthful maiden; wise old crone; sister; lover; wife; keeper of the family hearth; teacher; artisan; alchemical granter of worldly boons; daughter of the stars; and, in my favorite aspect, loving mother to her children.

Though she is worshipped in a variety of forms in most of the world's spiritual traditions, She is ultimately the One Supreme Power behind all creation.

During Navaratri, we are given an opportunity to tap the massive surge of vital spiritual energy (kundalini) that ascends spontaneously within our subtle energy systems when the Goddess Power awakens within us. In fact, the deeper meaning of Navaratri is related to this unprompted energy flow and the subsequent opening of our nine Tantric chakras or subtle spiritual centers that can occur during this special time. Therefore, it is said that the true purpose of this festival is sadhana, or spiritual practice.

It often seems that our sadhana gets a boost and our meditation seems more profound and enlivening during Navaratri, when kundalini may safely and gently rise without much effort. This process not only creates spiritual, emotional, and intellectual boons, but also material ones. During Navaratri, the entire planet is bathed in a glorious glow of divine nurturing energy that can purify and uplift us in extraordinary ways. Healing light is magnified so that we can rise above weaknesses and manifest a higher potential.

According to Sri Swami Sivananda,

Truly speaking, all beings in the universe are Shakti-worshippers, whether they are aware of it or not, for there is no one who does not love and long for power in some form or other. Physicists and scientists have now proved that everything is pure, imperishable energy. This energy is only a form of divine Shakti which exists in every form.

A child is more familiar with the mother than with the father, because the mother is very kind, loving, tender and affectionate and looks after the needs of the child. In the spiritual field also, the aspirant or the devotee-the spiritual child-has an intimate relationship with the Mother Durga, more than with the Father Shiva. Therefore, it behooves the aspirant to approach the Mother first, who then introduces Her spiritual child to the Father for his illumination.

The Mother's Grace is boundless. Her mercy is illimitable; Her knowledge infinite; Her power immeasurable; Her glory ineffable; and Her splendor indescribable. She gives you material prosperity as well as spiritual freedom. Approach Her with an open heart. Lay bare your heart to Her with frankness and humility. Be as simple as a child.

Kill ruthlessly the enemies of egoism, cunningness, selfishness and crookedness. Make a total, unreserved, and ungrudging self-surrender to Her. Sing Her praise. Repeat Her Name. Worship Her with faith and unflinching devotion. Perform special worship on the Navaratri days. Navaratri is the most suitable occasion for doing intense spiritual practices. These nine nights are very sacred to the Divine Mother. Plunge yourself in Her worship. Practice intense repetition of the Divine Name, having a regular "quota" of repetitions per day, and the number of hours spent on it [mantra practice]. www.dlshq.org/religions/navaratri.htm

Navaratri is often separated into three sets of three days to worship different key aspects of the Supreme Goddess. On the first three days, we entreat Durga Ma to help us cut through worldly illusion and remove all impurities and obstructions to the realization of true wisdom. The next three days, we honor the Goddess Lakshmi Ma and ask that she fill our lives with prosperity, contentment, love, enjoyment and enlightenment. In the final three days, we pray to the goddess of wisdom, Saraswati Ma, to bestow us with knowledge of the universal power and our true nature!

Take time to meditate, pray, chant and praise Her name, give charity and service, and worship Divine Mother during this festival period, and you will be rewarded a thousand-fold. If you do not already have a Shakti mantra practice, I recommend the "MA.OM." technique that I learned from a cassette tape many years ago that was released through Ammachi's organization. Unfortunately, I do not think the cassette tape or CD with this technique is available now. However, it has been replaced by something more wonderful, a meditation technique called the IAM - Integrated Amrita Meditation Technique® www.integratedmeditation.org

I have not learned this specific IAM Technique but have received many reports about it and have heard that it is quite amazing. The following is a variation of the practice I do, which I learned many years ago from the cassette tape:

1. First, sit in a comfortable position facing east, in front of an altar. Light a candle or incense. Place flowers on the altar as an offering. Surround yourself with golden divine light for your protection.

2. Invoke the Divine Mother through prayer. It is helpful to have a picture of the Divine Mother Goddess in any of her forms-it can be a picture of your spiritual teacher (guru), if you have one. If you were blessed to have a loving earthly mother in this lifetime, you may choose to place her picture here, too. You may also connect with one of the many Hindu goddesses like Durga, Kali, Lakshmi, Lalita, or Saraswati, or any of the Mahavidyas, or others. Perhaps you are connected with Mother Mary or another Catholic saint? Maybe you resonate with an African, Egyptian or ancient Greek goddess archetype like Oya, Isis, Artemis or Athena. You might be devoted to Quan Yin or Tara. Whatever form She takes for you, during Navaratri, it is extremely useful to ask that form of the Divine Mother Goddess to enter your physical being and fill your spirit at this time.

3. After you have invoked Her, close your eyes and anchor your inner gaze in the middle of the forehead at the level of your third eye. Inhale golden divine light while silently saying the word "MA" and exhale the same light while silently saying the word "OM." This mantra is best practiced silently.

4. Continue this for some time until you feel a lot of light in your head, then breathe in “MA” while running the light down your spine and visualizing it moving out and filling your entire body and spirit. When you exhale “OM,” continue to envision the light expanding out into your whole body and energy field.

5. After a while, visualize pulling the light upward from the base of your spine and out through the top of your head into the universe, all the while breathing in “MA,” and breathing out “OM,” and after a while, run the energy up and down the spine while breathing in “MA” and breathing out “OM.” This light will be clearing and healing to all the chakras along your spine, filling every cell of your being with golden, soothing, healing Mother Love.

6. After a while, the “MA.OM.” chant will take you into a deep place of silence. Rest here for a while before ending the meditation.

Jai Ma! All love and reverence to the Divine Mother Shakti! Blessings one and all.during Navaratri and always, let's join together and hold the highest vision that all is well and in perfect divine order.

Sept.25, 2008
President Bush warned on Wednesday of the strong possibility of a long and painful recession if the government does not pass an economic rescue plan immediately. This current economic calamity is reflected in this month's shifting major astrological cycle for the United States birth chart. My astrological colleague and friend Edith Hathaway very kindly e-mailed me earlier this week to share her incisive thoughts on the matter:

“On the financial front, U.S. Congressional hearings are taking place on the proposed $700 billion bailout of the country's banking system.the astrological timing indicates some delays and reversals, as tr. [transiting] Mercury turned retrograde in late Virgo on Sept. 24th, slowing down the process. Also, there is a waning [weak] tr. Moon, and tr. Mars moves out of a graha yuddha (planetary war) with Mercury as of Thurs. Sept. 25th. This is also when tr. Mars separates from Mercury in Virgo and moves into the next sign of Libra, indicating a shift away from the more heated and urgent communications typical of both Mercury and Mars in late Virgo. Some short-term pressure remains through Oct. 3rd, with tr. Mercury still in Chitra, a Mars-owned nakshatra. And tr. Mars is in Chitra through Oct. 5th, though in the Libra portion of the nakshatra.

Moreover, along with all this financial upheaval, the USA chart enters a new dasa [major planetary period] on Sept. 27th, 2008 - the 7-year Mars dasa. (I use July 4, 1776, 6:30 PM LMT, Philadelphia, PA, with 8:59 Sagittarius rising.) This marks the end of a 10-year Moon dasa. The tail end of a dasa [dasa chidra] can bring greater turbulence in many areas, especially financially and for banks and real estate in particular. In the United States chart, the Moon rules the 8th house of debt, taxation, and financial relations with foreign countries.

Mars dasa should bring some improvement in the current economic crisis, especially in the areas of technology and innovation through technology. Though America's current financial woes are not over, there are new solutions to old problems. The last Mars dasa occurred between Sept. 25, 1888 and Sept. 26, 1895. Bank failures occurred at that time due to over-speculation, especially related to railroads. New approaches to transportation also came into being, especially via the automobile, including the first successful automobile powered by gasoline. In 1893, the Duryea brothers set up the first American car manufacturing company. There were no major wars in this period, though there was the threat of war, often exaggerated through sensational journalism.” [Thank you, Edith!]

All of us who are part of the United States are profoundly influenced by the collective karma reflected in the United States birth chart. Equally, each of us has an influence on the karma of the collective! Besides the debt, taxation and financial relations that Edith mentioned, chronic stress, worry, strife and adversity are also clear-cut effects of the dasa of the 8th house lord.so I am sure many of us will welcome this change to a new cycle, once we weather the current storm.

Another of my friends and colleagues in New Delhi, India, Ashutosh, wrote to me recently to share his views about the current economic crisis and the approaching Mars dasa for the United States:

“Every adversity is a boon in disguise. For the United States, too, this economic period of ‘walking the plank’ will bring stringent measures and regulations in the financial markets. This is a natural process—creation, preservation, and then destruction. Then again, creation.

In India, at the time of independence in 1947, all banks and insurance companies were within the private sector. They all were nationalized in the 1960s to protect individuals from the instability and mismanagement of their money. Then, as the nationalized companies slowly went into stagnation and their performance went down over the next 30 years, the banking and insurance sectors were again opened to private sectors in the 1990s. The government even sold some profiting public sector companies to private players.

With the Mars dasa starting for United States very soon, we will see more nationalization of the financial institutions. There will be a massive change in government's financial policies. Mars will bring changes, and some will be quite radical.”

[Ashutosh is a professional consulting astrologer who can be reached for appointments at his mobile number-0091-9891145270 (009=ISD code for India) - or via e-mail at astrologerashutosh@gmail.com].

Though this is a potentially frightening economic period for many of us, it is our choice not to react negatively to sensationalistic fear mongering, but to instead consciously choose the eternal stream of well-being. Stay focused on the Now and watch any tendencies to go to a fearful state of mind. Motivational speaker Brian Koslow says, "The freedom to move forward to new opportunities and to produce results comes from living in the present, not the past." For those interested in investing, I see an incredible opportunity ahead. Mars is bhoomi karaka, the indicator of the earth and all her natural resources. In the United States birth chart, Mars is the ruler of the 5th house of good luck and speculation as well as the ruler of the 12th house of foreign assets and associates. Mars is located in the sign of Mercury (business and trading) conjunct Sun/Jupiter/and Venus in the 7th house of international affairs and business. Peter Schiff in his book Crash Proof recommends investing directly in foreign markets, and this fits exactly with what I see in the coming astrological cycle in which it appears many of our financial institutions will be nationalized and much of our debt will be sold to foreign interests.

Sept.24, 2008
Recently, a new client called, appearing quite anxious about an employment situation. This individual denied my offer of a comprehensive reading, asking instead for only a brief question reading. I explained that I do my best work when I can do a full 1.5 to 2-hour reading, as I prefer to adequately prepare in advance so that I can offer my finest service and optimal results. I usually defer short question readings to well-established clients whose astrological charts and cycles are already quite familiar to me.

However, this individual implored me to answer just one question, so I relented and gave a 30-minute prasna (question) reading on the spot. The results were quite positive for the question about employment, as the client called me a week later to say that things worked out in the timeline that I had predicted, though the job offer had come in a surprising way. We discussed this and I also offered some suggestions for karmic remedies. Afterward, the client agreed to send me compensation for my work. However, I did not receive any payment as promised, and just today, many weeks later, the client called, sounding desperate about yet another urgent employment matter.

There were a few lessons for me in this exchange.
1. Most importantly, honesty is a foundational ingredient of living with integrity or wholeness. When one says he is going to do something (such as paying for another's service), one needs to keep his word. Thomas Jefferson said,“Honesty is the first chapter of the book of wisdom,” and certainly every rooted spiritual tradition in the world establishes the importance of truthfulness. For instance, the Yoga Sutras of Patanjali describes in great detail the yamas, precepts of social discipline that are known to enhance our spiritual and worldly progress. These include satya, truthfulness, and asteya, honesty and non-exploitation of others. Following ethical guidelines like the yamas helps us to liberate the ego and attract more positive karmas and mitigate the more difficult ones. The law of karma teaches, “As you sow so shall you reap” (Galatians VI). Lies beget lies; stealing begets stealing; violence begets violence; and so on. Not keeping one's word and acting with disrespect toward others will create spiraling difficulties through the enactment of kriyamana karma.

2. As a professional healer and astrologer, I have repeatedly encountered clients who request a brief reading or even a free reading. In certain cases where there is a sincere need, I willingly offer my service in such a way. However, generally, my experience is that clients who ask me to provide incomplete or complimentary services are never quite satisfied by my efforts to help them. I have come to believe this is because such individuals are operating from a poverty consciousness, an attitude of powerlessness, oppression, and scarcity that focuses on what is missing or absent rather than what is abundant and available here and now. This belief system is like a bottomless pit that attracts ever more negative energy into it.greed, envy, jealousy, despair, lack of trust, self-pity, rage, an unnatural sense of entitlement.you name it.

3. My most effective work is with clients who are equal partners in their personal healing journeys. They take an active interest and make a commitment toward their own progress and process. They also gladly offer some energy exchange for the service given by others. This is important not only because it is a matter of respect and consideration, but also it is necessary to prevent incurring unnecessary karma on either side of the equation. Usually, such remuneration is in the form of currency or barter. For those with a consciousness of abundance and self-worth, such matters are well understood.

Sept.21, 2008
This year, the Autumnal or Fall Equinox occurs for the Northern Hemisphere on Monday, Sept. 22, 2008 at 15:44 UT (11:44 AM EDT; 8:44 AM PDT: and 5:44 AM Hawaii Time). From the Latin "aequus"/equal and "nox"/night, the Equinoxes mark the two moments a year when the Sun in its apparent path along the ecliptic crosses the Equator, and day and night are of equal length all over the earth. The Equinoxes mark seasonal cycles as well as those of the human energy system. The two are very much connected.

The Earth can be perceived as a living, breathing being, which many know as Gaia. She has her own magnificent energy system (kundalini) that is similar to that of humans. The human energy system is plugged into Gaia's electromagnetic field, which explains one reason that many of us feel better when we are able to spend time in a beautiful outdoor setting synchronizing with the powerfully nurturing energy of Mother Nature.

The electromagnetic energies of Gaia are modulated in large part by subtle magnetic frequencies emitted by the Sun and the planets, a theory that forms much of the basis of astrology. Because the Earth tilts as it moves around the Sun, we experience seasonal shifts on our planet. This seasonal movement indicates that the kundalini of the Earth is literally moving all the time.

The polar axis is Gaia's spinal column, and the solstices and equinoxes mark key energy transmission points along that axis. The changes to Gaia's kundalini energy field affect human biology specifically through our chakras that step down into the human endocrine and neurological systems. Just as seeds go through a cycle of birth, growth, flowering, fruiting, seeding, dying off, and going underground to rest, so do we also have a seasonal energy flux that mirrors the kundalini movement within Gaia.

The Fall Equinox represents the pinnacle of the harvest season, when the kundalini of Gaia in the Northern Hemisphere is streaming into full fruition. (In the Southern Hemisphere, all these cycles are simply reversed). The Equinoxes signify points of equilibrium on the Earth, when the forces of light and dark/yang and yin/positive and negative come briefly into complete balance. At the Fall Equinox, Gaia reboots her entire energy system as the kundalini energy begins moving downward into her heart chakra.

This balance point of the Fall Equinox is a valuable opportunity to prepare for the next cycle in our lives. I recommend that you take time out of your busy schedules to give thanks for all you have been given, even the challenges because they are the greatest teachers. You may want to look at what is out of balance in your life that may need some readjustment. Remember that you are a spiritual being having a human experience, and create a ritual to reconnect with Spirit in some way. Rest and enjoy the fruits of all your efforts made since last Summer Solstice. Enjoy and be grateful for all the ripened fruits for which you have worked so diligently, and offer the seeds toward your dreams for the future.

Mercury is stationing and will turn retrograde this week on Sept. 24, 2008 at 7:17 UT, where it will appear from our perspective to begin moving backward for approximately the next three weeks. This will occur in the constellation of Virgo, the sign of healing and purification, a crucial theme at this time in the world and especially for the United States.

In the Vedic/Sidereal zodiac, Mercury will station (appear to stop) close to 29 degrees in the Nakshatra called Chitra, symbolized by a jewel or pearl. Chitra is a creative "star," so I see this coming Mercury retrograde cycle as one that offers us the potential to review and refashion our goals and dreams for the future.

The higher nature of Chitra allows us to tap into pearls of wisdom that help us see beyond the illusions of form. The shadow issues of Chitra may also manifest in order to help us push beyond our limitations. Mars is the ruler of Chitra, and Mars will be conjunct Mercury at the time of the Mercury station, which can indicate a high degree of anxiety and irritation in the coming weeks, as well as difficulties related to travel; business and finance; communication; and technical matters. On a more positive note, the Mars influence can give us a whole lot of discipline to help us get our lives in better order. Be careful of what you say and how you say it in order to avoid potential confrontations, and try to keep your mind and your emotions calm and in balance.

Sept.20, 2008
Friends and clients have been calling and asking what is going on in the world. I read so many different pronouncements by astrologers and psychics that the world is falling apart. The mainstream media is pumping out a constant barrage of fear and panic, and through the mass mind, we are all being bombarded with this negative vibration. The US Presidential election is a key concern for so many people now. Talk about a negative vibration! The "us versus them" mentality in the electoral process is a tremendous illusion that keeps our collective unconscious in a state of disequilibrium.

As an astrologer, it is challenging to know where to even begin offering an astrological perspective on these apparently chaotic times, because we as multi-dimensional beings exist on many different planes of being. Simply in the realm of space-time, there are also many levels to our being. At the highest dimension, at the level of source consciousness, all is eternally and infinitely well. Here is where I encourage you to continue placing your trust, in the realm that Abraham through Esther Hicks calls the "never-ending stream of well-being," which we each have the option of choosing moment by moment, or not: www.abraham-hicks.com/lawofattractionsource/about_abraham

At the dualistic level, we human beings will always suffer as long as we place our identification in the ever-transitory and unstable material world and fail to rest in the knowledge of the true Self. According to the visionary philosopher Teilhard de Chardin, "We are not human beings having a spiritual experience. We are spiritual beings having a human experience." As an astrologer, the greatest gift I can give my clients is to help them remember this truth, so that they can more and more begin to place their trust in the ultimate reality of eternal spirit. Doing this allows each of us to live more under the law of grace and less under the law of karma, so that difficulties in the external world are mitigated and we experience more well-being!

Rumors about the Mayan prophecies for the year 2012 abound. I plan to write more about this in the future, based on some of my research. For now, I want to briefly discuss the greater cycles of time, known as yugas in Sanskrit. Conventional Hindu wisdom says that we are in the darkest age of Kali Yuga. I am more prone to believe the alternate view of the late enlightened sage Swami Sri Yukteswar on this matter. His calculations put us 300+ years into the ascending cycle of the Dwapara Yuga, which is a brighter era that is getting better all the time as humankind is seeking more spiritual knowledge and demonstrating the capacity for greater compassion and wisdom. However, according to Yukteswar's theory, the Satya Yuga, the Golden Age of Truth, is still something close to 5,000 years in the future. For each of us though, learning to live in the stream of well-being in harmony with our spiritual natures gives us the opportunity to transcend time and space so that the Satya Yuga is happening here and now.

Sept. 13, 2008
Welcome to my blog, where I plan to periodically post about a variety of topics mostly related to astrology and spirituality. Feel free to email me your comments, which I may put up here, as well.

I live on the Big Island of Hawaii, in a small mountain town 15 minutes above the breathtaking beaches of the Kohala Coast. During the past week, our beaches have been closed for swimming because of numerous tiger shark sightings. In my experience and that of my friends, this is a very unusual state of affairs.but then, what doesn't seem bizzare or even surreal these days? Or is it just me?

Evidently, the tiger sharks are mating. Yesterday, I heard a rumor that at least fifteen of these 12-foot creatures have been seen swimming very close to the Kohala shore. Every year, there are a few attacks throughout the Hawaiian Isles, and there was even an attack on a young surfer in recent days off Oahu, but it is rare to see the beaches shut down for days on end along the Kohala Coast.

These sharks seem to be acting strangely. My friends and I ask each other, "What could it mean?" The common response is a cheerless nod to "Well, it's global warming, of course." But, I wonder if this shark flurry represents something more profound, like an omen of the collective instability and fear that seems to be plaguing the mass mind lately.

Then, I remembered that we are fast approaching a very special annual two-week celebration in the Hindu lunar calendar called Pitrupaksha, the dark fortnight following the last full moon of summer (Sept 15-29, 2008). This two-week period is considered the most auspicious time of year to honor our ancestors, including departed family members and spiritual teachers.

In the ancient Vedic tradition, it was understood that revering one's ancestors is necessary in order to maintain harmony within our own nature as well as among all of humanity. This tradition remains very much alive today in much of Hindu culture. It has been suggested that the planetary unrest we are experiencing today is due in part to a certain lack of respect for not only nature but also for the spirits of our forebears.

We can all take some time during the next few weeks to pay tribute to our ancestors. Some might wish to visit family cemeteries or memorials and make floral offerings at family gravesites. We can make any kind of sacrifice or offering on behalf of our ancestors, for instance: fasting or undertaking some other kind of penance; having a yagya or puja performed; contributing to a charity; offering service or support to someone in need; losing ourselves in something that is truly enjoyable or memorable; spending some contemplative time in nature; creating a beautiful memorial altar or artistic piece; making a holy pilgrimage; or, praying, worshipping and meditating. The point is to lovingly remember those who have passed before us as we offer the fruits of our sweetest efforts up to their highest well-being.

It seems somewhat of a synchronicity that the sharks have been swarming our Hawaii beaches near the time of Pitrupaksha this year. Perhaps, they are the aumakua (Hawaiian ancestor gods) coming back to bless us and remind us to be mindful during the current state of turmoil and uncertainty in the world. Living in Hawaii and learning to respect the native traditions (and being fearful of shark attacks, I must admit), I have had to let go of my blissful habit of swimming in the delicious ocean waters for a while. I can allow the sharks their mating space. I might even go down to the beach and give an offering of flowers, chants and prayers for their well-being. but, I will remember to keep a respectful distance.