Life

The difference between happiness and joy

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At first glance, we might think that happiness and joy are the same thing.  Both make us feel good, both are qualities that we seek.  In fact, embedded in the United States Constitution is the inalienable right to the pursuit of happiness.

In reality, though, I would argue that the two are quite different both in quality and in their effect on our human lives.  Happiness is a feeling, an emotion – a sense of pleasure and contentment. Happiness comes to us when we feel that life is worth living; that the circumstances in our lives have manifested in a way to generate a feeling that life is good.  The astrological correlation for this sensation is Jupiter – the Greater Benefic, the planet that helps to activate these good feelings of abundance and confidence and which often brings about actual good luck and good fortune.  Venus, the Lesser Benefic, is also involved in good feelings in its role as the seeker of pleasure, love and beauty.

Though a dictionary might say that joy is a synonym for happiness, they have a different quality.  Where happiness is based upon life circumstances and events that are good rather than bad, joy is an inner experience that springs from the heart and the soul.  Happiness comes and goes depending on our circumstance; joy arises from the soul when we feel completely aligned in our sense of Self.

Joy is defined in dictionaries as being synonymous with exultation, jubilation, exhilaration, elation, euphoria, bliss, rapture – sensations that activate a higher perspective than mere happiness and require a turning away from attachment to the things that come and go.  To me, this is represented by the full and complete activation […]

By | 2018-04-12T11:34:37+00:00 April 12th, 2018|Inspiration, Life|17 Comments

Neptune in Sagittarius and the astrology of the 1970s cults

RajneeshpuramI recently watched the Netflix documentary “Wild, Wild Country” about the town created by the followers of Baghwan Shree Rajneesh that began as a utopia of blissful cooperation and devolved into madness and unimaginably bizarre crimes of attempted murder and fraud.

The conjunction of Uranus (radical change) and Pluto (destruction of the old and transformation of the new) in the late 1960s took place in conservative Virgo, and the established morays of the previous decades were blown apart to smithereens.  Women began fighting for the right to be equal citizens.  People of color refused to sit in the back of the bus and demanded to sit at lunch counters and use any damn water fountain they pleased.

Religion was another arena that saw a radical transformation as the dogma of established religion was questioned and many began exploring other religions, including Eastern mysticism.  The acid experiments of the 1960s led to the spiritual seeking of the 1970s, symbolized most prominently by the conversion of Richard Alpert, colleague of Timothy Leary in the search for psychedelic enlightenment, who transformed into Ram Dass in 1971.

Neptune is the planet of spiritual experience and humanity’s search for an authentic connection with the divine.  Where Jupiter creates theologies and religious belief systems, Neptune says “forget all that nonsense and come directly to me.”  Neptune traveled through Scorpio between 1956 and 1969-1970 and inspired a desire to release sexuality from the shackles of marriage (Neptune in Libra) and eventually, in the 1960s, to experience sexuality as a pathway to bliss.  Neptune in Scorpio also generated a renewed interest in the occult, with the release of the Rider-Waite tarot deck to the general public in 1959.

Neptune moved into Sagittarius in 1970, bringing the Sagittarian interest in […]

By | 2018-03-29T11:17:21+00:00 March 29th, 2018|Consciousness, Life|5 Comments

Finding trust and faith in the future in difficult times

A portion of this article is a repost from an earlier article. Astrologers have a reputation, which we ourselves and our forbears have propagated, of being able to foretell the future.  If you run a Google search for “Can astrology predict the future,” the very first article is from a well-known astrology site titled “Predicting the future with astrology.”

The hunger to know the future is not, of course, limited to astrology.  Climatologists, stockbrokers, economists – all are paid to predict the future.  All fail miserably.

In our personal lives we long to know the outcome of our personal situations.  As one client brilliantly wrote me in frustration that astrology could not provide a clear map for him, “It is difficult for me, who feels blind about many things in life, to see a possible path to the answers, and that I feel on the edge of great personal discoveries, without the ability to really obtain them.”  I have certainly experienced those same feelings, and for many years I studied every aspect of my life through an astrological lens, hoping to find a clue to the future.

It’s just not possible.

It’s not possible to know the future because we are on a journey of self-discovery.  Religious people have a hard and fast belief system that tells them what their future holds, and for many that blind faith offers comfort.  I am a person that needs to experience things to believe them, and what I CAN tell you is that after over 30 years as a student and practitioner of astrology I have learned to really trust the planets.  The painful changes that we are forced to make under a Pluto transit can be seen through the eyes of hindsight as […]

By | 2018-02-27T07:57:20+00:00 February 27th, 2018|Inspiration, Life|0 Comments

Seven year growth cycles of the human experience


The number seven has great significance in spiritual numerology (seven planets, seven chakras, seven days of the week, seven heavens in Islam and ancient Judaism, seven deadly sins and seven virtues, etc.) but it also has meaning in human evolution.  Astrologers and astrology enthusiasts will recognize a seven year cycle as being part of the Saturn cycle.  Saturn takes 28 years to circle the Sun, and the synodic cycle of Saturn (relative to its placement in the birthchart) brings about a peak event every seven years.  At age seven we have the opening square of Saturn in the sky to Saturn in the birthchart, at age 14 we have the opposition (180 degree point), at age 21 the closing square, and at age 28-29 we have the Saturn Return.

about planetary correspondences in these seven year cycles:

The first seven years of life (0-7 years old) were associated with the Moon. During this time, the psychic forces are working to transform the body of the child from one that was inherited from the parents, to one that represents the full personality of the child.

The second seven years (7-14 years old) is associated with Mercury. At this time, the child’s imagination and feeling life takes center stage.

The third seven years (14-21 years old) is associated with Venus, during which time the higher mind of the adolescent takes root, and the psychic development can be disturbed by the strong impulses of puberty.

The next three seven-year segments are associated with the Sun (21-42 years old), and the elements of sentient soul, intellectual soul, and consciousness soul.

The next seven-year segment is associated with Mars (42-49 years old), when the soul works hard to impress the […]

By | 2018-06-11T13:06:01+00:00 January 21st, 2018|Life, Planetary cycles|11 Comments

In praise of hierarchy: A tale of the Uranus/Pluto square

In case you missed it, ever since Pluto entered Capricorn in 2008, followed by Uranus entering Aries in 2010, these two planets were locked in a challenging aspect that inspired and motivated the change that we have seen between 2010 and 2017.  (You can catch up here if this is all new to you.)

I always find it interesting when the zeitgeist (defined: the defining spirit or mood of a particular period of history as shown by the ideas and beliefs of the time) reflects for the mainstream thinker the planetary cycles that astrologers have been talking about and explaining in the context of planetary cycles.

 by economist Niall Ferguson (may be behind a paywall) tells a part of the story of this planetary cycle:

Established, traditional order [Capricorn]  is under assault [Pluto] from freewheeling [Aries], networked disrupters [Uranus] as never before. But society craves centralized leadership ([Capricorn], too. …

Networks rule not only in the realm of business. In politics, too, party establishments and their machines have been displaced by crowdfunded campaigns and viral messaging. Money, once a monopoly of the state, is being challenged by Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies, which require no central banks to manage them, only consensus algorithms.

But is all this wise? In all the excitement of the age of hyper-connection, have we perhaps forgotten why hierarchies came into existence in the first place? Do we perhaps overestimate what can be achieved by ungoverned networks—and underestimate the perils of a world without any legitimate hierarchical structure?

The answer is, of course going from one extreme (rigid hierarchical societal structures) to another (chaos and anarchy) is not a great idea.  Nature and human nature both tend to swing from one […]

By | 2018-01-07T18:45:55+00:00 January 7th, 2018|Future Shock, Life|2 Comments
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