When Mercury In Pisces Squares Saturn In Sadge…

HoofInMouth….it is generally a good time to shut one’s mouth and practice a little self-censoring. Why? Well for one Mercury (our words, communication) is debilitated in Pisces. We may have a hard time being articulate and picking the right words, something may be lost in translation, we may not exercise enough discretion about what we’re saying, we may bend/distort facts and fib, lose our verbal filters and have poor conversational boundaries, we might say things in a roundabout way that lacks clarity and creates confusion, or we may just flat-out be misunderstood.

Now Saturn is The Enforcer. He insists that we mind our P’s & Q’s and, most importantly, be responsible – with his contact to Mercury, this demands accountability for the messages that we put out there, so caution should be used with what we’re saying. As Saturn currently resides in Sagittarius, this pertains especially to topics involving, religion, race, politics, worldviews, etc. So this is really not a time to be saying things that are socially irresponsible unless you want Saturn to come along and slap some sense into you.

Let’s start with Exhibit A, the recent Dolce & Gabbana flap. Here’s the recap of what happened in case you missed it: Fashion designers Dolce & Gabbana gave a recent interview for an Italian magazine in which the duo expressed their views on gay adoption. The statement reads as follows, “We oppose gay adoptions. The only family is the traditional one. No chemical offsprings and rented uterus: life has a natural flow, there are things that should not be changed.

O_O

Now I don’t know if this opinion was volunteered or solicited, but either way you’ll recall from my newsletter that I mentioned one of the key themes of Saturn in Sadge is putting a stop to bias. Surely making sweeping generalizations about “chemical offsprings” and “rented uteruses” counts as a rather ignorant and prejudicial statement by itself? There are double Saturn bonus points penalties involved here because it’s a rather harsh political statement to boot, and Saturn in Sadge does not like soapboxing – you can be sure he’ll check dat ass if/when a line has been crossed! Apparently one was, because a call to #BoycottDolceGabbana has ensued, involving several high-profile celebrities.

Now what have we learned from this illustrative example? That it’s generally an ill-considered time to be running off at the mouth with political statements. Apparently, Starbucks did not get this memo either, because they are currently involved in a little social media flap of their own. Here’s the scoop on this one: Evidently someone high up on the corporate food chain at Starbucks decided *this* was going to be the moment to launch their #RaceTogether ad campaign. Cue epic fail. In this campaign, the company encourages its baristas to engage their customers about the topic of race relations. Which, if you’ve been paying any attention to American news at all, is kind of a loaded topic at the moment in the wake of things like the events in Ferguson, Missouri involving Michael Brown, the Eric Garner case…things like this. Ergo, it’s probably not the wisest of choices for a corporation to pick this topic as a conversational “jumping off point” for its baristas to engage with total strangers. This was then followed up by heavy social media criticisms of how Starbucks doesn’t hire enough people of color, doesn’t feature enough ethnic diversity in their ad campaigns, etc., and culminated in their VP of global communications terminating his Twitter account due all the flak he was getting from this. Um, so let me see if I have this straight: As a corporation, you are asking people to talk to you about race relations, and then when people actually do your response is to slam the door in their face? Yeah, not a good plan.

FlexibilityI think Joanna Rothkopf of Salon.com summed it up perfectly: “Half-assed efforts at creating the appearance of a corporate social conscience are suspect at best”. If this truly was just a misunderstood attempt by Starbucks and an earnestly compassionate effort to get dialog going in order to work on race relations, how about instead of taking ads out in the NY Times and USA Today about #RaceTogether, they walked their talk by supporting diversification in the workplace and hiring more people of color so this way any dialog about the topic could unfold more naturally instead of being artificially forced by corporate pressure? Or feature a broader array of ethnically diverse individuals in their advertising? All of these would be good starting points that would actually indicate some kind of social conscience rather than just paying it phony Mercury-in-Pisces lip service.

Now there is also a little taste of the approaching Saturn/Neptune square in all of this, because you may also recall from the aforementioned newsletter how I mentioned Saturn in Sadge naturally frowns upon hypocrisy – it’s very important that we be an example of whatever moral code-of-conduct we purport to believe in so that we don’t wind up fooling ourselves with Neptunian smoke-and-mirror delusions about how we’re practicing what we’re preaching when we really aren’t. As a very good “for instance”, see the Brian Williams post – here is a guy who’s job (well, theoretically anyway, LOL) is to report the truth. Meanwhile, he goes on record telling a baloney self-aggrandizing war story about himself that never happened and naturally gets into trouble for this. It’s never a good idea to pull the wool over our own eyes (or others’, for that matter) and bullshit ourselves with Saturn in the mix!

As I post, the square between Mercury in Pisces and Saturn in Sadge is waning.  However, Mercury will remain in the sign of its detriment for almost another two weeks and all conversations are best engaged with compassion and sensitivity.

03/17/2015

Brian Williams: A Cautionary Tale For Saturn In Sadge

Yikes – so “Get with the program!” Saturn entered truth-seeking Sagittarius for an almost 3 year long stay back in late December 2014, and guess who has already found himself “regulated” by Saturn? NBC’s Brian Williams recently got himself into big trouble for fudging a story about how, during the Iraq war, a helicopter he was supposedly in came under fire and had to make an emergency landing. Needless to say, this was not the truth and it seems Saturn has now come along to fact-check his ass!

Sagittarius is the sign of broadcast journalism, and when Saturn visits the sign he definitely requires that we “tell the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth” or face the consequences. Brian Williams may be the first newscaster casualty to be felled by their own hand during Saturn in Sagittarius, but I doubt he’s likely to be the last – especially with the approaching square between Saturn & Neptune activated this year & next. Lo-Fi Neptune represents self-undoing and deception, and as this planet clashes with Saturn during 2015 & 2016, we should expect hard truths to hit if/when we’ve been fibbing to ourselves or others. For the field of journalism as a whole, this transit is definitely all about integrity & ethics – those involved in this profession are well advised to walk the straight-and-narrow.

A simple & accurate equation for the Saturn/Neptune square. Let’s not get all Eeyore with it; rather treat it more like a Buddhist philosophy so that we avoid being Pollyanna-ish!

For the rest of us, we should know the disillusioning potential of this transit comes into play whenever our expectations are held too high. That phrase about expectation being the companion of disappointment comes to mind – especially as this pertains to our journalists, politicians, and religious leaders with Saturn in Sagittarius. I think this is a good time for the humanity as a whole to be asking itself …Read More…

For Sagittarius

An amusing, quick-and-dirty way to figure out which side of the forthcoming Saturn/Neptune square you’re currently vibing with (active between 2015-2016) is to contemplate your response to the image below:

BeerBikeLimo

Meet the beer bike limo! Yes, it’s a real thing. You and a few pals can belly up to the bar and enjoy a pint whilst taking in a slow-motion tour of the city powered by your own two legs (and a Designated Driver chauffer, of course). If you get too tired/drunk to peddle? No big deal – an eco-friendly electric motor kicks in to save the day!

Now does the idea of a beer bike limo sound like the BEST. THING. EVER., or are you instead struck by impracticality of such a slow, seemingly pointless means of transport?

If you answered A, you’re most likely erring on the Neptune side of the equation. Neptune will square the Suns of all November & early December-born Sagittarians between now & late 2016. Symptoms of this can include: an increased hankering for booze (or other substances), a marked decrease in critical thinking and possible impaired judgment, and/or a longing for some kind of spiritual connection. For more possible manifestations (both constructive and detrimental), see the following post on Neptune transits.

If instead you answered B, you’re probably leaning more toward the Saturn end of things. ALL Sagittarians will experience the passage of Saturn over their Suns during the next 2 years, and this has the capacity to make for an “all work and no play” attitude. If you can’t muster at least a little good humor at the absurdity of the above-pictured invention, it may be a sign that you’re taking life a little too seriously these days and could benefit from an injection of whimsy! I mean, come on – it’s a pub crawl with cardio, for goodness sakes!

However you feel about the beer bike limo, you have to admit that it is a pretty genius business idea perfect for the aforementioned Saturn in Sagittarius square to Neptune in Pisces. Craft beers have been taking off like crazy thanks to Neptune’s residence in Pisces, and this is an excellent way of imbibing with virtual calorie-count neutrality while toning/firming those gams at the same time! It’s very neo-hippie, IMO – something Sadge would love, as I’ve yet to meet a Sadge that couldn’t run or bike their ass off. Well, OK – maybe one or two, but that’s because they favored armchair philosophizing over a couple of brewskis to general physical exertion, LOL. But this sign does love to stretch the legs and roam, and I can’t think of a more fitting (and hilarious!) mode of transportation for a Sadge having a Neptune transit – cheers!

02/13/2015

(Unfortunate) Signs Of Saturn Into Sagittarius, Part 2

TheInterviewPosterIt began with Sony Pictures’ controversial decision not to release the film “The Interview” as scheduled on its proposed release date of December 25th, 2014,  just two days after Saturn’s entrance into Sagittarius. The movie in question is a political satire lampooning the N. Korean government, and Sony made the decision to pull film from theaters ahead of its release following terrorist threats believed to be made by hackers associated with the hermit kingdom.  Controversy quickly ensued as debate broke out about public safety vs. freedom of speech, and resulted in the movie ultimately being released online on December 24th and then being shown at select independent movie theaters on a limited-release basis as of December 25th.

JeSuisCharlieThen came the horror of the Charlie Hebdo massacre in France.  For those not familiar, Charlie Hebdo is a weekly satirical publication in France known for its left-wing, often irreverent views.  Apparently, their comical depictions of the prophet Muhammad angered some Muslims, 1) because their religion was being spoofed and  2) because according to Islamic law,  depictions of the prophet Muhammad are forbidden.  Two such individuals took this perceived affront to an extreme by breaking into the newspaper’s headquarters in retaliation – armed with guns (likely supplied and funded by Al Qadea) – and carrying out a mass shooting where 12 were killed and 11 more wounded.

I’m sorry to report that both of these unfortunate events can serve as examples of one particular facet of Saturn in Sagittarius’ energy  – see this excerpt from my December 2014 newsletter about the effects of Saturn in Sadge:

Over-seriousness: This tends to be a more “politically correct” energy overall and as a result our collective sense of humor may become a bit dampened by this influence. Comedy that relies heavily on the use of stereotypes is most strongly affected, such as ethnic jokes. Similarly, political satire or humor that disparages religion may be particularly subject to Saturn’s censoring if/when a line gets crossed. ……..At the very least, people will be most certainly inclined to let us know when something is “not funny” and/or if a line has been crossed, because Saturn is all about showing self-restraint and staying within bounds.”

I have to tell you that when the the astrological correlation between these two events hit me and my own words came echoing (hauntingly) back, I felt my blood run cold.  But I find myself compelled to write about these recent geo-political events nonetheless for educational purposes so readers can see one potential expression of Saturn In Sagittarius in action for themselves. In bringing up this tie-in, I also want to put forth a disclaimer that Saturn in Sagittarius – by itself – isn’t inherently “bad” or “negative” so that nobody gets the wrong impression from reading this particular post in a vacuum.  As is always the case, much of a planet’s expression is dependent upon the consciousness level of the individual responding to it, and I think it’s pretty safe to assume that both parties responsible for these two incidences probably have a consciousness level somewhere between “in the basement” and “below sea level”.  Indeed, no astrological force is ever one-dimensional – there’s a whole spectrum of possible expressions, some of which are going to exemplify the Hi-Fi side on an energy, others the Lo-Fi vibration, and others still may be inclined to be more neutral in nature.  If you’re looking for an explanation of some of the more positive manifestations of this energy, go back and re-read my December newsletter in full because it does  give a pretty balanced point of view on this topic.  Or read the first Saturn in Sagittarius post in this series.  But for the purposes of this article, we’re going to explore factors involved in what made these events exemplify (or “resonate with”, if you prefer) the Lo-Fi end of Saturn in Sagittarius.

There are 3 themes of Saturn’s energy that strike me as being most applicable to these scenarios:  protection, fear, and control.  I am almost certain that – in both instances – the terrorists’ goals was to 1) protect their ideologies (religious, political, and philosophical ideologies are all Sadge’s domain!) , and then as a response to this impulse, they made a choice – based on their level of consciousness – to (duh) 2) spread fear, because that’s what terrorists do.   And Sadge is a propagator extraordinaire – there’s a reason this sign is known as “The Promoter”.    Now obviously in doing so, they were attempting to control how the world views them (and worldviews are again something that falls under Sagittarius’ umbrella). The outcomes could have been very different if either of these two groups had a more elevated level of consciousness and focused instead on the capacity for ethical morality that Saturn in Sagittarius is quite capable of; however we all know how looney people can get when they feel as if their politics or religion are being disrespected/laughed at.  And Respect (with a capital R!) is always, ALWAYS a Saturn-related issue.  As I have mentioned before, Saturn is (and will be) engaged in a loose but ongoing square with Neptune in Pisces for about the first year and a half+ that it spends in Sadge – this can very easily blur lines when it comes to our sense of personal responsibility for what we believe is “right” or “wrong”, especially as this square tightens up between late this year and most of next year.

 

01/15/2015

Saturn In Sagittarius: Veritas, Aequitas, & “The Indifference Of Good Men”

If you’ve ever watched the cult classic “The Boondock Saints”, you’re probably familiar with the words “Veritas” & “Aequitas”. The film’s twin protagonists each have one or the other tattooed upon their trigger fingers, and the words in question represent the Latin concepts of truth and justice/equality, respectively. These terms came to mind while mulling over Saturn’s entrance into Sagittarius next month – a sign he will visit for the first time in about 29 years due his turtle-like orbital speed. There is something quite heavy-handed about this energy when it comes to the enforcement of what is (subjectively?) “right” – to me, it says “Hammer (…or is that gavel?) of God”. When reflecting upon this placement, it brought to mind the topic of theocracies & also caused me to ponder the related subject of enforcing morality via legislation even when “the G-word” isn’t involved.

Connected to this, one of the effects of Saturn in Sadge is that – on a macro level – it may also correlate to a period of stiffer legal penalties and stricter adherence to the letter (rather than the spirit) of the law overall, so I found myself with some good literary fuel for a (forthcoming) newsletter article when the words “veritas” and “aequitas” suddenly popped into my mind in relation to this energy. Not wanting to sidetrack my newsletter piece, I decided to write a post about this connection on the blog instead, because these terms do seem pretty fitting given the iron-fisted (and yet justified?) nature of Saturn when it arrives in this sign of truth & righteousness on December 23rd. Now if you’ve seen the movie, you’ll know exactly what I’m talking about re: the heavy-handed enforcement of “principles”. But those who haven’t might not know what the hell I’m talking about, LOL, so naturally the next thing I did was to go looking for a clip from this movie. Fortuitously, I happened to stumble upon this scene instead, which cracked open a whole other perspective on Saturn in Sagittarius’ energy. Have a look, because I think it gives a very good angle on another lesson associated with this transit:

 

 

I want to talk specifically about the preacher’s cautionary tale of Kitty Genovese and how he says there is one kind of evil to fear most: The indifference of good men. This theme struck me as quite relevant when considering the implications of Saturn’s movement through Sagittarius, because this is a sign closely associated with “righteousness” and “judgment”. What exactly do we consider “right” and “wrong”, anyway? What do we judge as “good” or “bad” – where exactly is the dividing line in our moral boundaries and how black-and-white do we see things in this regard? And how do we fortify our principles – do we lead by example? Do we impose our sense of morality upon others? And what happens if we abdicate our sense of righteousness instead and pass the responsibility of “doing the right thing” (in accordance with our supposed principles) onto someone else? Is there not some onus to bear on our end if we believe ourselves to be good people?

This is what the monsignor was addressing in his speech about a 28 year old girl who was stabbed to death in 1964 by an assailant outside her crowded Queens, NY apartment building despite the fact that close to 40 people heard or saw *something* in relation to her stabbing, subsequent attempted rape, robbery, and eventual murder. Her assassin even had time to leave the scene – with Kitty critically injured, yet still alive – and come back 10 minutes later disguised in an oversized hat to finish what he had started.

This gruesome story provides an eye-opening look at what can happen when we fail to follow the dictates of our conscience and “let the other guy handle it”. Especially back in an era when being a “Good Christian” was a more common parlance, it’s stunning to think that such a thing could happen with no one stepping in to call the police (Saturn) until it was too late. As we approach Saturn in Sagittarius, this tragic tale can serve as cautionary reminder of the consequences (again, Saturn) that can arise from a failure of conscience. Sagittarius only represents our principles of morality; it does *not* show whether we’re inclined to practice what we purport to believe or preach, which is why one Lo-Fi facet of Sadge is hypocrisy. Hi-Fi Saturn – on the other hand – represents the self-regulating principle and whether or not we adhere to certain standards, codes, etc. of conduct and behavior – it’s doing what we “should” do and staying on the straight-and-narrow, even if/when we might not necessarily want to. It could be fear of repercussions from our parents, teachers, law enforcement, god, or whathaveyou that keepsUltima5 us “on track and out of trouble”, but once we’ve reached a certain level of maturity and/or personal development, most it’s often our own conscience that informs us of what’s “right” or “wrong” in a given scenario. And internally enforced morality is far better than the externally enforced variety, don’t you think?

The bottom line is that if we believe ourselves to be good people, on some level this means we have to be prepared to be “Our Brothers’ Keepers” regardless of whatever particular creed we do or don’t subscribe to. Hi-Fi Saturn is about protection, and when resonating with the higher side of Sagittarius, he does so without regard to things like race, culture, socio-economic status, age, gender, or sexual orientation because we are all a part of the HUMAN race. Saturn in Sagittarius can largely deal with the reality that – as members of the global human race – each person has an individual responsibility toward the collective good. When we’re firm in our principles and seeking to live an upright life, there really isn’t room for “The indifference of good men”, because our goodness and virtue only extends as far as our willingness to protect what is right, true, & just when presented with a test such as the one bystanders faced the night Kitty was killed.

Boondock Saints association aside, perhaps the concepts of “Veritas” and “Aequitas” might inspire us to realize that truth & justice are more than lofty ethics that we only pay lip service to. True righteousness can be a difficult path to walk and may involve challenging choices and hardship; particularly if/when it means standing tall and overcoming our fears about doing the “right” thing. During Saturn in Sagittariusthings will come along that will not only test our faith, but also how we’re applying the principles we allegedly believe in, so being congruent with whatever Path we profess to be on is an absolute *must* for the next 2 1/2 years!  Because if there is a real disparity between the two, The Universe will be sure to let us know. Think of all the witnesses to the Kitty Genovese murder – history has indelibly marked this lot as “bystanders who just sat by”, forever used as a textbook social psychology example of the phenomenon known as “diffusion of responsibility” even to this day, 50 years later. The Universe seems pretty clear about there being more than one wrong perpetrated on that day, and that “the indifference of good men” is indeed an evil to be feared.

11/13/2014

A Neptunian Tale In Preparation For Saturn In Sagittarius Square Neptune In Pisces

CountingSheep

 
I’ve found myself placing an unusually high value on “restorative time” these days, whether this is time spent unwinding in yoga class or simply catching some good zzz’s at night, so I recently decided that I was in the market for a new mattress, naturally. I was searching for something supportive and yet soft enough to make me want to leap into the bed with glee at the end of a long day, but before making this investment I decided to do some investigating – there’s so many bedding options out there these days that looking into the pros and cons of all the different varieties on the market only seemed sensible. Inner spring, pillow top, pocketed coil, latex, memory foam, gel foam, air cushioned……the array of sleep possibilities are simply dizzying!

Now this got me thinking, because Neptune is the Lord of Dreamtime, so of course mattresses fall under his domain. And no matter where we turn, it seems everyone is trying to sell us on this ideal of “a perfect night’s sleep”. But I have to wonder if such an elusive, mythical creature even exists or if it’s simply a vague yet enticing concept cooked up by marketing gurus, designed to drive us in sleepless droves down to the mattress stores. And what does “perfect” entail, exactly? Because what’s perfect to you, me, or the guy next door are likely to be very different things indeed!

During the course of all this information filtering, I came upon an eye-opening statistic: Did you know that in a consumer report survey conducted regarding mattress manufactures, most brand makers only had customer satisfaction ratings around the 50% mark? That’s just crazy to me – especially when you consider the average person’s willingness to shell out good coin to get that “perfect night’s sleep”. In my research, I came across models that were 5, 7, 10, 20+ THOUSAND dollars – now when a mattress costs more than a new CAR (which has complex engineering that goes into all those moving mechanical components), something fishy (yes, that’s a Neptune reference) is most certainly going on!

Neptune is a planet of fantasy – it tries to sell us a dream. And that’s what happens when we go a-mattress-shoppin’ – everyone is trying to convince us the dream is real and that it too can be ours for the low, low price of just fill-in-the-blank. A friend worked in this industry years ago and once told me the markup on these products was something like 1000% (yup, you read that right) – I don’t think he was …Read More…