Sunday, August 26, 2012

Upward Bound

  
In a moment of "coincidence" the Planet Earth Balloon appeared at the Rocky Mountain Airshow on Friday. Built by Doug Grimes and Patty Lewis, the balloon consists of 436 individually digitally printed panels of images from the Blue Marble Earth photographs taken by the crew of Apollo 17 in 1972. Those were heady days for the space travelers of our time. In a moment when my country has fallen into a nasty pit of emotional excess, hatred, and personal destruction, I was inspired and relieved to have my attention drawn to the outer possibilities and the aspirations of humankind.

With the moon in Sagittarius passing the North Node just leaving Sagittarius, it's no surprise that our attention has been directed to the outer dimensions as we recall one of our country's greatest achievements. I am particularly drawn to the statement made by Mitt Romney concerning the death of Neil Armstrong.
The moon will miss its first son of earth. 
Many of us are coming to grips with our decisions about the next president of the United States. There are pros and cons on both sides, but it's a fact that Governor Mitt Romney is not well known and he is mostly misrepresented. Should he be elected, it's not as scary a proposition as some might think. Far from being a felon, cheat, murderer, vulture, and vampire he is thought by many to be a man of outstanding moral character. I know not. It's hard for me to judge. But here is a testimony from someone who knows him, so anything that allays fear is good in my opinion. Trust doesn't come easily, but in the end, it springs from within.

http://mittromneycentral.com/2012/08/26/the-mitt-romney-we-know-private-observation/#more-67752

It doesn't matter who wins. It will work out either way. We have Mars to land on next.

70 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Mitt might be a nice guy, but so was GWB I hear. The platform and people he's agreed to stand behind is anything but nice.

29/8/12 4:28 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Romney looks like another Warren G. Harding. Affable and charming up front sure, but with a back door to the White House bridged wide open to corporate corruption and scandal. There's a reason why David and Charles Koch and Sheldon Adelson are spending millions to get him in and Obama out.

29/8/12 10:40 PM  
Blogger jm said...

Of course.

30/8/12 5:26 AM  
Anonymous TK said...

I do think he sees himself as a moral man who stands up for the values that he believes in. But what are those values?

He's a Bishop of the Mormon church, but somehow discussion of his religious beliefs are 'off the table'. If a bishop of the catholic church was running for President, wouldn't his religious beliefs and responsibilities be up for discussion?

This is a man who threatened a young female parishioner with excommunication if she didn't give up her illegitimate baby to the church for adoption.

Are these the morals that you as a woman you want in charge of the country?

As for his business dealings. I don't want to condemn him out of hand, as he clearly never did anything illegal.

It's whether you agree with the morality of the kind of rapacious capitalism that Bain Capital embodies; taking over weak, ailing companies, gutting the workforce, stripping them of assets like pension funds and exploiting tax loopholes to generate billions in profits for themselves.

Is that moral, in your opinion? If it is, then you'll be fine if he gets in, because companies like Bain will be given even more carte blanche than they already have to operate in that manner.

If you have a problem with this kind of capitalism, then you really should be fearful of the era a President Romney will usher in.

12/9/12 7:43 AM  
Blogger jm said...

I'm not afraid. I trust Romney.

You've made up your mind so there really is no argument, is there?

I will try to educate you on one fact though. The bishops of the Mormon Church are not clergymen as you know them. They are called "lay bishops" and they don't preach, but rather they serve the community by administering to people who need help. They do lay counseling and oversee the dissemination of food, clothing, etc. Mitt Romney has no intentions of imposing his religious beliefs on this country. He couldn't even if he wanted to.

I respect your right to choose but I advise you to be careful about saying things that might not be factual. The laundry list of complaints against Romney are suspect and are passed along like a game of telephone where truth is lost by the end of the line. Few people who parrot the list have bothered to back the claims up with solid evidence.

It matters not. The right man will be chosen for the time. It is my opinion that Mitt Romney will be an excellent president, but I have no illusions about the possibility of convincing you otherwise, and you should vote for the one you feel comfortable with.

It's OK. I merely tried to reassure those who are afraid of him that their fears might be unfounded, so when he's president, you will be able to face it with equanimity.

Fear of capitalism is utterly useless since either one will ensure its continuation. It's all well and good to talk about justice, morality, and economic equality, but bringing them into reality is not an easy task, as much as most of us would like that. The hierarchical structure of society is ingrained so far and we'll work within it the best we can. If you can truly give of yourself, that will help.

Tolerance and understanding have eluded most people so far, since people rarely take an honest look at themselves while they are so frightfully busy tearing apart others who disagree with them.

It's hard to understand another person from an emotionally charged perspective, so even a modicum of objectivity can help you feel a little better. Confidence can help us flow with the passage of events in a harmonious manner. Many of us are more fearful than we need to be.

12/9/12 2:28 PM  
Anonymous TK said...

You know what? I may not agree but I do see what you see in Romney. And as far as republican candidates go, he is clearly by far the best of a seriously loopy bunch.

He doesn't seem to be motivated by the kind of religious extremism that some of the others are. And he clearly isn't a tea party patsy like the rest of them.

In fact I don't really think that Romney is the problem. The real problem is what comes after Romney in the GOP, especially if he fails to win this time.

The relentless swing to the religious right of the Republican party really threatens to send the U.S into a taliban like era when they finally manage to claw their way into power.

13/9/12 5:37 AM  
Blogger jm said...

TK,

Thank you for a reasonable comment, except fot the last line which I'll get to in a second.

First of all, I am not a Republican. I come from a long and deep liberal tradition, but in the last few years the Democratic party took such a disturbing turn for the worse, that I had to leave.

In view of the partisan hatred I decided to get into the Republican consciousness and what I found was unexpected. It did not fit the prejudice I was steeped in from the left. There are good and bad people on both sides, and the philosophies aren't all good or bad. It's how they are interpreted and applied, and how they fit the needs of the time, that tell the story. A good government has to include lawmakers from both sides. Many republicans are people like you who want basically the same things in their lives.

The relentless swing to the religious right of the Republican party really threatens to send the U.S into a taliban like era when they finally manage to claw their way into power.

That view is indictive of the extreme of the left and the fear mongering is inappropriate. They "claw" their way no less than the democrats do. And the Taliban comparison is highly innacurate. It's an overemotional negative stereotype.

The fact is, the far right is becoming less powerful these days and the party itself is trying to loosen the grip. The right wing extremists represent a small fraction of the populace and there is no reason to be so frightened of them. The repubs dislike them more than you do since they believe they've destroyed their political chances.

On the other hand, the far left is also problematic in its emphasis on state power. If you live in such regimes, you will come to realize the drawbacks.

I used to accept the pro choice stance on abortion without question until I looked into it and was shocked by what I discovered. The sanctioning of full term abortion is abhorrent. It requires partial birth abortion, meaning the baby is born then murdered. No civilized society should allow such behavior in my opinion, and even second trimester abortions are hideous and brutal. So the acceptance by democrats of these practices without even knowing the truth of the matter is disturbing to me. Most are unfamiliar with what's involved. Not that any of the laws should change. It's just that people should know what's going on.

Liberals judge those who oppose abortion as backward, ignorant, and often evil while thinking that supporting it is a sign of intelligence and advancement. That's not a good measuring device for progress.

I don't know if you saw the Republican convention, but if you did not, then you missed some of the amazing rising stars of the party who are far from extreme. So what comes after Romney is a different kind of republican.

Women especially get great opportunities in the repub party and there are more of them in high position than democrats.

Mia Love, for example, who's running for Congress in Utah is a wonderful woman, mother, and mayor of a small town in the state. Another one is Susana Martinez, the governor of New Mexico. They are in no way extreme or dangerous even if you don't agree with their policies. They are standouts. The republican party has changed and is still evolving. The democrats need to change too.

Romney represents a bridge. He was once an Independent and, of course, he passed the first universal health care law in the country in Massachusetts when he was governor. He had the most women in the highest positions in his administration of any state in the country. The last thing in the world the man wants is for women to be treated like the Taliban treats their women.

I fully understand disagreements with his views, but the idea of him being evil just doesn't compute. I agree with you about some of the others being loopy, but he knocked tham all out of the game.

To be continued.....

13/9/12 10:05 AM  
Blogger jm said...

So as I said, I think either way it will be all right. Just the fact that we can start a fruitful political conversation indicates potential hope for the country. The hatred is corrosive and causes us all to get sick, which makes the cost of health care astronomical. :-)

13/9/12 10:06 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

JM, you have penetrating insight, thanks for sharing it. I often disagree with your conclusions from those insights but my gratitude for what you share remains the same.

14/9/12 12:24 PM  
Blogger jm said...

Thank you Anonymous. Your eloquent and gentle expression of disagreement is exactly what I'm seeking.
Excellent.

15/9/12 2:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I won't be voting for either candidate and either of the two major parties this year or any year to come ever after. Neither offer anything but the same old tried and true imperialism and plunder that is destroying this beautiful world. Many of us idealized Obama in 2008, but he turned out to be so much like the Bushes and Clintons before him,...beholden to Wall Street and the machinations of violently destructive US capitalism and the ruin it heaps upon so many innocent people. What I don't get jm is how you can overlook so much of what is plainly just as wrong with Romney and the Republicans to warmly embrace them! I can understand your disappointement with Barack Obama... but holding up Williard Romney of the same corporate hydra as some kind of moral man and hope for the future??? Sadly and with all due respect, I think you are deluding youself.

21/9/12 12:19 PM  
Anonymous Joe said...

Anon 12:19pm,

I'm biased in JM's favor. :) I don't know that it's self-delusion... it may be a canny realization that at this point, the current system won't permit more than 2 candidates to appear before the public as the voters' "choices."

The quotation marks are intentional. Personally, I feel the presidential election is wholly rigged, and has been for some time.

I, too, am disgusted with every candidate presented for our consumption. I'm well aware that all must past a litmus test for funding the welfare of a certain little country in the Mid-East, or else one of two things happens: their candidacy languishes for lack of exposure, or else meets some contrived demise.

I am toying with either not voting for president at all and focusing on local races, or else voting the Libertarian ticket. It does exist, despite the media's careful screening of what's available.

If/When the American public comes out of its media-induced coma and sees what's been done, and what's left, then it will get a bit interesting.

21/9/12 1:21 PM  
Blogger jm said...

I agree about the "choices". But we do need a president. I was originally going to sit this one out, but then when Romney appeared and I tried to see him objectively, I realized that he was the one for the time.

I can't even begin to think of another term for Obama so I really have no choice. I realize Romney evokes these negative feelings in people but so be it. I think he'll do a very good job. The problem of capitalistic plunder is ours collectively and if you think you'd like a life in a tyrannical communistic state, then perhaps you are the one who is deluded. Or even a fairly mild welfare state with ultra high taxation. That would have to include you if you aren't rich. People say they love the idea of commonwealth but when push comes to shove, they resist it. You are probably no different, just remiss in admitting it. Even rich capitalists protect the innocent when you aren't noticing and attacking. The wealthy, assuming you aren't one of them, are not responsible for your resentment and misery. I wonder what is?

I agree about the problems with out of control capitalism, but I lay the blame for ruin of innocent people on your shoulders, too. Stop supporting the corporations if you truly believe these things. Obama, for godsake, is not going to save these innocents. He is propped up by Wall Street too.

Many many Americans are depending on WS for retirement, so the issue is complicated. I don't appreciate your simplistic victim-perpetrator analysis. I think it makes it even harder to come to an equitable solution. We have built this monster collectively and it's time for people like you to begin thinking about the sacrifices you are willing to make besides screaming at the ruling elite.

If/When the American public comes out of its media-induced coma and sees what's been done, and what's left, then it will get a bit interesting.

Exactly Joe. And it's not happening. So we are stuck with what we have for now. The endless blame game leads to zero progress. Pinpoint the cause and then get going. I think the internet is sending us backwards as people think by crying day after day here something will get fixed.

Anyway, I go along with the refusal to vote, but as I said, we do need a president. Because I think Romney fits the bill shouldn't be such a mortal threat to you, anonymous. That's why I say that my overall intention was to allay your fears about the media manufactured mythological evil of this man. It's wise to be OK with your president.

I admit that I am not comfortable with an Obama second term so I am working on acceptance of that possibility.

Romney's stance on social issues can be overlooked since he doesn't have the power to change laws. I trust that he won't use executive privilege to do so like the current president.

If you honestly want to stop the "imperialism and plunder that is destroying this beautiful world" then stop traveling the proverbial Silk Road in search of cheap commodities. Look at your own greed as well as Mitt Romney's. We all are guilty of trying to overstuff every orifice we can every waking moment of our lives. Good lord.

Who says the world is being destroyed? I don't believe it. I am in awe of the earth and I think she knows better. I trust she can defend herself. One pass of her magic wand and we're finished.

It really really really doesn't matter who wins this fool election.

21/9/12 4:15 PM  
Blogger jm said...

In short, anonymous. You're right.

21/9/12 4:22 PM  
Blogger jm said...

It'll be all right. Things work out.

22/9/12 2:16 AM  
Blogger kadimiros said...

Recently while visiting my father, I was reminded by a bottle cap -- the kind that are printed with striking facts -- that George Washington was the only unanimously elected president of the United States.

I was amused, and I value my right to vote. There are those who find pleasure in assuring us that there is nothing new under the sun, but the novelty has not yet worn off despite that I am persuaded that some part of me has seen entire civilizations come and go. (Well, I expect that I am partly made of recycled matter and energy, like the rest of nature.)

A known limitation of a democratic system is that average people are unable to recognize authentic leadership skills in others. (Average people being average, after all.) So, the system tends to promote mainly those who are average or slightly above average. It is guaranteed to dissatisfy many.

By now, we know this going in. I have suggested at times, let us not wait for the latest eleventh hour paladin. Whenever one -- or someone claiming that mantle -- does arrive, of course, do make use of him or her as much as can be. Such individuals are partly what people make of them.

"Do not passively depend on gods, who are themselves temporal constructs," a smart man advised millennia ago, "but diligently work on your own salvation."

I've joked at times about the healthy suspicion that one ought to, at least initially, have for any politician mad enough to run for high office.

In the commercial workplace, researchers have found that most of those who are admired by their peers after early meetings, those who appear to be natural leaders, are in fact no more competent than anyone else. It is simply that they are more extroverted, forceful and quicker to speak their minds. They put forth their opinions with tremendous confidence, and the rest simply go along with it. I am sure most of us here will easily recognize examples of this behavior in the political sphere, too.

Incompetence is often a word writ large, I think, for (studies tell us) those who are most competent are often among the most modest; like homely Socrates, they cannot escape acute and hard-earned knowledge of themselves.

Therein is a saturnine clue to excellence and mastery, by the way. Fire fighters, for example, learn more from hearing stories of failures recounted by more experienced fire fighters, than from hearing success stories of lives saved. Sometimes a lesser calamity inoculates against greater ones. There's some salvation in that we mostly can learn, and in time become attuned to finer cues in life than outright disasters. (One might suspect that because we did not have enough edifying drama in our lives, we re-invented tragedy as a theatrical art form.)

Hard though its lessons seem, Saturn has been considered the most dependable agent of change. I think we cannot escape sight of his shadow while longing for his ancient aspect of Golden Age philosopher king. They would naturally come in the same person, if there ever is such a one, carrying the projections of the populace for good and ill.

I sometimes suggest to my friends that we be mindful of the larger process in which we are embedded. We influence each other much more than we know.

29/9/12 2:52 PM  
Blogger jm said...

A known limitation of a democratic system is that average people are unable to recognize authentic leadership skills in others. (Average people being average, after all.) So, the system tends to promote mainly those who are average or slightly above average. It is guaranteed to dissatisfy many.

I'll start with this one. I hadn't thought of that. It seems to me, however, that they might be able to recognize leadership when it's genuinely needed. Real crisis doesn't happen that often. But 9-11 sort of validates this idea, when an average person was elevated instantly to great leadership status.

Interesting. Maybe that's explains the awful effort to make leaders likable and equal to the commoner in these so called democracies. The monarchies and assorted autocracies are not inclined in this direction. So your statement appears to be accurate.

I guess the citizens have conflicting desires when it comes to selecting leaders when thay have the choice. A powerful leader treads too close, perhaps, to tyranny, and an average guy might seem less threatening despite the lack of leadership skills.

Do not passively depend on gods, who are themselves temporal constructs," a smart man advised millennia ago, "but diligently work on your own salvation."

I'll buy that.

It's a fascinating subject. How much leadership do we need? Do we mold it as we go out of the clay posing as the current leader? Do we actually guide ourselves collectively? We've been somewhat successful so far.

The rest later....

29/9/12 9:03 PM  
Blogger jm said...

I've joked at times about the healthy suspicion that one ought to, at least initially, have for any politician mad enough to run for high office.

I get the joke. That's why I used to ignore them religiously. I sensed there was something terribly wrong with them -- people driven by compulsions they are unaware of and obviously unable yto control. I guess we all are, but we only implicate a few other humans in our complicated sticky webs. And we normally don't murder them.

The attraction to persecution worries me and it's especially pronounced this time with Neptune in Pisces. The game is a sado-masochistic ritual that belongs in the realm of taboo, in my view, and should not be witnessed. Oh how far I've fallen! *Sigh*

those who appear to be natural leaders, are in fact no more competent than anyone else. It is simply that they are more extroverted, forceful and quicker to speak their minds. They put forth their opinions with tremendous confidence, and the rest simply go along with it. I am sure most of us here will easily recognize examples of this behavior in the political sphere, too.

Heheh. Yup. Confidence. And the attendant supplication. Or more reasonably, team spirit and accomplishment.

The Saturn-failure issue is a great one. I'll return with more response.

29/9/12 9:41 PM  
Blogger kadimiros said...

"I hadn't thought of that. It seems to me, however, that they might be able to recognize leadership when it's genuinely needed. Real crisis doesn't happen that often."

And that leads (hmm!) us to the question of when, and what style of, leadership emerges. Rather than only thinking of leader as a noun, we could consider it as a condition almost alchemically elicited from a set of base elements under stress.

A emergency, one in which there is little time to think and take action, is suitable for the autocratic style, which would under normal conditions become too oppressive.

"I guess the citizens have conflicting desires when it comes to selecting leaders when thay have the choice. A powerful leader treads too close, perhaps, to tyranny, and an average guy might seem less threatening despite the lack of leadership skills."

Interesting. I have not looked to be fond of politicians. "Can you make me love ____?" seems a rather plaintive plea for something other than leadership.

"Bosses" are unlikable according to the popular stereotype, often minor villains in the drama, but someone must take that role ... if there must be followers. Perhaps we should gently stress the "if".

I imagine that someone who is a petty tyrant in ordinary life could "rise to the occasion" if her personality and character (which may be trying and detrimental to the daily productiveness of her peers) happen to fit the particular circumstance. Smart executives who fail spectacularly (and destroy their companies or cause them to lose vast sums of money) are often those who were promoted for past success, but whose tested strategies and personalities no longer match new situations.

Were I on an executive leadership track, I would not only examine excellent leadership but also case studies of failed leadership.

30/9/12 3:11 AM  
Blogger kadimiros said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

30/9/12 3:45 AM  
Blogger kadimiros said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

30/9/12 3:49 AM  
Blogger kadimiros said...

Apology for the deletions; corrected text follows.

"It's a fascinating subject. How much leadership do we need? Do we mold it as we go out of the clay posing as the current leader? Do we actually guide ourselves collectively? We've been somewhat successful so far."

I'm inclined to think so. It is probably not a specific intentional strategy for anything yet (outside of things like search engine algorithms), but it has merit. For some quantitative matters, averaging the estimates of a group of people can be more accurate than asking any one of them for the answer. Here experts fall down and the average is smartest.

We can take a cue from the taoistic mind and look to the background, not just be mesmerized by the foreground. I tend to think that the inflection point happened before the 2008 U.S. presidential elections. It was not after that nor is it now. The elections, I think I have said before, outside of extraordinary times, are often more manifestation than cause. Perceived events lag behind their beginnings. This does not mean that individually, we do not have potential inflection points in the present; we probably always have them.

In an early study of group psychology, the three most general styles of leadership were determined to be authoritarian ("autocratic"), participative (sometimes called "democratic"), and delegative ("laissez-faire") -- with expectable results. If I recall correctly, the participative style (leaders "lead" but to some extent also "follow") was middling efficient but the most effective and creative.

The cry for less government is often couched in terms of "get government out of the way". In a way, it leans in the direction of "laissez-faire". No one who cries for less government exhorts voters to participate more (and more regularly) in better governance than to vote. What might that unleash, after all.

It seems that voters are assumed to be naturally poor at governance. I imagine that someday there might evolve a government which looks to facilitate and nourish the citizens' capacity for participation in excellent governance. There is room for growth here, I suspect. We are but at the beginning.

Hmm, I wonder how different it would be for town hall meetings to be held, not always in town halls, but outdoors, fair weather permitting, in full public view.

The effectiveness of a participative leader is diminished when there are few participants. Then he or she must beware of straying too far from that messy-in-practice ideal.

30/9/12 4:02 AM  
Blogger kadimiros said...

"I guess the citizens have conflicting desires when it comes to selecting leaders when thay have the choice. A powerful leader treads too close, perhaps, to tyranny, and an average guy might seem less threatening despite the lack of leadership skills."

That makes sense.

We want people who can take charge, and yet decry the powerful for their oppressiveness.

Particularly when they must make problematic decisions. Perhaps one side of the complaint comes down to the collective poor grasp of underlying issues. The leaders must go where the people find it difficult to follow. It is easier then, to blame the leaders for choosing thorny paths and steep rocky inclines with perilous footing, and to dream of American exceptionalism while living what is often objectively a relatively comfortable modern life in the history of the world.

What does it mean to exhibit excellence in leadership? Under what conditions does it emerge? Can it cope with a polarized electorate? These are very human questions (imagine lions pondering them) whose answers are for the human species to discover.

"Heheh. Yup. Confidence. And the attendant supplication. Or more reasonably, team spirit and accomplishment."

Yes, the participative style...the creative middle of the spectrum between untenable extremes. Although, a good leader might well span a good chunk of the spectrum, at need.

30/9/12 4:05 AM  
Blogger jm said...

About Saturn and failure....

Sometimes a lesser calamity inoculates against greater ones. There's some salvation in that we mostly can learn, and in time become attuned to finer cues in life than outright disasters. (One might suspect that because we did not have enough edifying drama in our lives, we re-invented tragedy as a theatrical art form.)

Beautifully put. I love the phrase about tragedy as an art form for want of edifying drama. I know this is so. We invent as well as hooking on to others' tragedies, remote as they can be, for these reasons. I've been opposed to this behavior but maybe it's time to expand my mind on the subject. Thanks.
I often think life is a series of "lesser calamities" that work to build immunity to the string of threats that confront us lifelong. Were it not for these inoculations the cumulative effect would be fatal. Well, in the end, it is. But sometimes in old age we seem to express an uncanny strength and resilience, and resistance to clamities that would have overwhelmed us as younger forms of ourselves.

My wise friend put it succinctly:

"Life is a series of adjustments."

It might be further defined as:

"Life is a series of inoculations."

Hard though its lessons seem, Saturn has been considered the most dependable agent of change. I think we cannot escape sight of his shadow while longing for his ancient aspect of Golden Age philosopher king. They would naturally come in the same person, if there ever is such a one, carrying the projections of the populace for good and ill.

This could be a clue to the type of leadership required now. With Pluto in Capricorn coming to oppose the country's Sun, we have an opportunity to blend the austere taskmaster (Saturn) with the Golden Age philosopher king. (Sun/Leo) The philosopher might actually come under Capricorn.

Interesting to note that some of our ersatz soothsayers see darkness and severe hardship ahead in these Capricorn years, and others sense a possible renaissance. We shall see. Which Saturn will we get? What brand of leadership?

I agree with the idea of Saturn being the agent of change. Capricorn is a cardinal sign bringing the initiation of the new. Uranus is often thought to be the purveyor of change, but Aquarius is actually a fixed sign and might not actually bring change, but simply disruption that might or might not lead to change. So far, the change has not arrived. But now with Aries and Capricorn, both cardinal, I think we can expect some, even if it comes disguised as a return to something viewed as traditional. At least for awhile.

I think the knowledge of failure as a beneficent influence is important. I had a piece written on the subject, so I will post yet again. There is a frightful amount to cover.(:-)

30/9/12 8:17 AM  
Blogger jm said...

And that leads (hmm!) us to the question of when, and what style of, leadership emerges. Rather than only thinking of leader as a noun, we could consider it as a condition almost alchemically elicited from a set of base elements under stress.

Yes. It's formed and strengthened in the crucible probably in concert with the dangers of the moment.

Interesting. I have not looked to be fond of politicians. "Can you make me love ____?" seems a rather plaintive plea for something other than leadership.

No kidding. The likability game unnerves me. In fact, I think it's the opposite. Leaders are naturally somewhat remote and not likely to pander to popularity. I think many feel superior in ways, which is not necessarily a bad thing. I think followers prefer that themselves. Why should a leader be "one of us"? Seems senseless to me. She might be, she might not. It's not the measuring tool for good leadership. Maybe leadership is simply, she who naturally moves out in front.

30/9/12 9:28 AM  
Blogger jm said...

We can take a cue from the taoistic mind and look to the background, not just be mesmerized by the foreground. I tend to think that the inflection point happened before the 2008 U.S. presidential elections. It was not after that nor is it now. The elections, I think I have said before, outside of extraordinary times, are often more manifestation than cause. Perceived events lag behind their beginnings. This does not mean that individually, we do not have potential inflection points in the present; we probably always have them.

I love that Taoistic mind hint. No wonder I've always been sympathetic to that philosophy. I refer to myself as one who steps back and looks at the whole picture. Or up to catch the overview. But a peek at the background explains it too. Maybe even better, which is why I was so attracted to photography and film making.

Very very interesting about the inflection point. I wonder. I was oblivious and confident until the Iraq invasion. Something tripped in me whereupon I violently pulled a muscle in the center of my chest. It grabbed my attention and rerouted me. I came to cyberspace and involved myself with the body politic, all the while planning my escape which has yet to grace my life.

So that could have been the inflection point for me. I completely agree that 2008 was not it. It was a moment of novelty or something.

Perceived events lag behind their beginnings.

Their conclusions are elusive too. And all of it is illusive.

It seems that voters are assumed to be naturally poor at governance. I imagine that someday there might evolve a government which looks to facilitate and nourish the citizens' capacity for participation in excellent governance. There is room for growth here, I suspect. We are but at the beginning.

I think we do better in smaller governing units, so the path forward might bring more governing power down to the state and local level.

My ideal involves a changing body of decision makers in which all citizens participate on a rotating basis. Some families do that. In fact, a study of power within ordinary families would be fascinating. I'm sure it's been done.

It seems that all governing plans fail and that's probably for good reason returning to the value of failure. So we can study the failure in order to see the correction. I guess the USA system is in that process and maybe the next inflection point is forthcoming. I've never seen such a chaotic ruling body as we have now, or maybe I wasn't paying close enough attention. Real crisis might firm it up. Maybe the iron filings will align in some workable order before I disappear.

I was OK with the system until recently because I was always able to slip freely in and around it. The courts have been just in my personal experience. But any buds of fondness have dried up, and if we need government, I think we need a new and improved version. Some of the state governors are actually doing well right now. Maybe because they have more personal knowledge and investment.

I like the town hall technique, and I agree, the venue could be influential. The air and sun would be vastly superior to the harsh glare of fluorescent lighting. That alone keeps me out of politics. And the hard chairs.

30/9/12 1:39 PM  
Blogger jm said...

Yes, the participative style...the creative middle of the spectrum between untenable extremes. Although, a good leader might well span a good chunk of the spectrum, at need.

Which brings me to my opinion of what really directs human events....circumstance.

to dream of American exceptionalism while living what is often objectively a relatively comfortable modern life in the history of the world.

It's hard to get truly comfortable as a whole since we perceive dangers ahead and on our heels. So we must tackle the thorns and perils, which in turn leave us feeling "exceptionally" skilled at surviving and then thriving. At least we no longer have to depend on woolly mammoths for nourishment. It takes exceptional skill to bring those beasts to the table.


30/9/12 1:53 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

" At least we no longer have to depend on woolly mammoths for nourishment. It takes exceptional skill to bring those beasts to the table"

...brought a big smile to my face as I pictured you hunting a mammoth

5/10/12 10:40 AM  
Blogger jm said...

HA HA! I'm smiling too. I love these voices from the blue yonder. Thanks for the humor.

5/10/12 3:45 PM  
Blogger kadimiros said...

"This could be a clue to the type of leadership required now. With Pluto in Capricorn coming to oppose the country's Sun, we have an opportunity to blend the austere taskmaster (Saturn) with the Golden Age philosopher king. (Sun/Leo) The philosopher might actually come under Capricorn."

That's an interesting idea. Saturn is the repository of experience, which should inform.

"I think the knowledge of failure as a beneficent influence is important."
   ..."Why should a leader be "one of us"? Seems senseless to me. She might be, she might not. It's not the measuring tool for good leadership. Maybe leadership is simply, she who naturally moves out in front."

I would add the caution that groups with smarter leaders are often not the first mover into new territory; being the first mover is often overrated. Those who let another group go first avoid many pitfalls that swallow the first group venturing into new territories. So, we can appreciate the grace that spares us.

"It's hard to get truly comfortable as a whole since we perceive dangers ahead and on our heels. So we must tackle the thorns and perils, which in turn leave us feeling 'exceptionally' skilled at surviving and then thriving. At least we no longer have to depend on woolly mammoths for nourishment. It takes exceptional skill to bring those beasts to the table."

Yes, it's probably better to limit the perceiving of hypothetical dangers, or at least the spiraling reactiveness to them, and to attend to being effective in the present. Then, as people feel more effective in the face of the daily challenges confronting them, that relieves the emotional discomfort and leads them to a personal, rather than borrowed, sense of accomplishment that more truly fortifies them for the future.

It is about improving effectiveness, which is the better metric, of the individual person contributing and learning with others. To feel one's personal power is to feel effective.

Of course, any hungry would-be modern hunters of mammoths should take note that tranks are easier than spears or elephant guns. One challenge over, more will follow. You would think we would be used to it by now. As you say, how else would we become exceptional?

7/10/12 12:11 PM  
Blogger kadimiros said...

Speaking of change and Saturn, those who are intrigued by spacecraft video of celestial phenomena will be interested to know that researchers are studying the "Largest and Hottest Vortex Ever Seen in Solar System", a giant cyclone briefly outshining Jupiter's Great Red Spot in size and brightness. Temperatures have spiked in a normally stable part of Saturn's atmosphere. Two scientific papers on the phenomenon will be published next month.

25/10/12 3:49 PM  
Blogger jm said...

Yes, it's probably better to limit the perceiving of hypothetical dangers, or at least the spiraling reactiveness to them, and to attend to being effective in the present. Then, as people feel more effective in the face of the daily challenges confronting them, that relieves the emotional discomfort and leads them to a personal, rather than borrowed, sense of accomplishment that more truly fortifies them for the future.

Yes. Well said. Fear of the future is no more than fear of the present. It's worth some thought the idea that personal accomplishment fortifies one for the future. I suppose blind faith works as well, but experience with the present could be considered more reliable.

I always say that we've gotten this far safely, so there's little to deny the fact that the future will be more of the same with our coping mechanisms in the bank as we go. There should be a growing confidence in ourselves as we progress through time. I think there is, but the spiraling reactiveness, as you say, trips us up. Fear resists confines and logic. Although sometimes it makes sense.

The dangers keep coming and we keep surviving.

One challenge over, more will follow. You would think we would be used to it by now. As you say, how else would we become exceptional

I guess we are. While we wait for the Big One.

25/10/12 10:32 PM  
Blogger jm said...

What a beautiful Saturn storm.

Interesting.

The bright beacon is now expected to slowly fade away and be gone by 2013, though astronomers wonder if there are further surprises to be had on Saturn.

Pluto and the crucible and Saturn, the normally stable one. Saturn in Scorpio is now in mutual reception with Pluto in Capricorn. I wonder what dimension lies within that vortex and if it's leading the system on an unknown trajectory. Would such a large event on one planet effect the others? Why all the heat? What is the furnace producing?

The light factor is interesting. And the beacons merging. Especially since Saturn is associated with cold and dark. There must be something special about this phenomenally bright moment.

I shoulda been a scientist. What a thrill it must have been to watch this storm unfold.

Thanks. A very enjoyable video.

25/10/12 10:50 PM  
Blogger kadimiros said...

You're welcome. It's a remarkable phenomenon, and staggeringly amazing.

Something about this is evocative of the relationship between The Fool with his fair weather optimism and The Hermit who has his own light no matter where he goes at night. Key notes seem to be:

• Something happening sooner than expected (too much time, too little time, being timely or on time).
• Something exceeding expectations and the expected order shown to be invertible (cold to hot, dark to light, etc.).
• Opening of awareness to something powerful that was formerly outside perception, on many levels (for example, physical, mental, emotional, spiritual).

Those least prepared -- hewing to old patterns, established order and expectations -- have been most disoriented.

"Pluto and the crucible and Saturn, the normally stable one. Saturn in Scorpio is now in mutual reception with Pluto in Capricorn. I wonder what dimension lies within that vortex and if it's leading the system on an unknown trajectory. Would such a large event on one planet effect the others? Why all the heat? What is the furnace producing?"

Excellent questions. Esoteric traditions suggest that one should expect influences between the psychical domains symbolically connected to the planets.

In mythology, Saturn ruled over a golden age of abundance without labor. His contradictory aspects (for example, as a god of liberation whose cult statue had its feet fettered in wool most of the year except for his Saturnalia) could upend social norms. An exile who became a ruler, he blended the utopian with awareness of threat.

Later astrologers forgot that Saturn was once the god of reversals (and comebacks), and associated Saturn only with order, stability, rigidity, age, experience, death. Interestingly, in the modern era, Pluto (and perhaps Uranus) absorbed some of Saturn's symbolism. One could regard the mutual reception as an opportunity to bridge that splitting of attributes, and to exchange energy/information.

To Eastern mystics, Saturn is palpably and experientially connected to the third eye of psychic perception and far vision, where the left-right, masculine-feminine polarities of the spirit-mind-body system creatively conjoin, and past and future meet in the heady crucible of the present. Saturn, as experience, appears to bring karma but Saturn, as wisdom, may be the key to its release.

26/10/12 1:09 PM  
Anonymous Joe said...

Thank you, Kadimiros, you've added another piece to a theory I am constructing about the structure of things most people don't think about.

"An exile who became a ruler..."

Since Saturn is the outermost planet visible to the naked eye, it makes sense that Saturn would be considered exiled, or be associated with exile. I've read tantalizing snippets that Saturn is connected to the ancient Israelites (or else to the Jews in general), and the theme of exile is well-known to them. Six is associated with Saturn as well, and there's also the six-pointed star associated with Judaism. Intriguingly, it was reported in 2009 that scientists found a hexagonal jet-stream at the northern pole of the planet Saturn. Here's a link:

http://www.wired.com/wiredscience/2009/12/saturn-hexagon/

Ever onward, trying to put the puzzle together...

27/10/12 2:57 PM  
Anonymous Joe said...

Two additional tidbits about Saturn that got left out of my previous post:

Kadimiros wrote, Later astrologers forgot that Saturn was once the god of reversals

Yes, and thus the feast of Saturnalia, December 17 - 24, when custom was upended and formalities relaxed. In Europe from the 5th century to about the 16th century, especially in Rome, there was a feast day in which a slave or commoner was made king for a day, while kings, lords and masters assumed the role of servant, just for the day. Later, the Feast of Fools replaced Saturnalia as the Church tried to prevent such feasts and revels.

And in the Tarot, The Hermit is also associated with Saturn in some regards.

27/10/12 3:18 PM  
Blogger jm said...

Very very interesting about the reversals and comebacks.

One could regard the mutual reception as an opportunity to bridge that splitting of attributes, and to exchange energy/information.

Yes. Yes. Yes. I am fascinated by mutual receptions and no astrologer I know of yet can explain them, but you just did the job, I am inclined to believe.
Excellent.

The mutual reception now could be setting the stage for the rest of Pluto through Capricorn and the deeper mysteries that could serve us well.

The idea of past and future forged in the crucible to create a rich and knowing present is great.

It might be that some cache of wisdom is becoming available for those who seek it. Maybe now is a time for preparation.

Then the Hermit with his own light wherever he goes at night. As the outermost personal planet Saturn seems to protect us from the vast darkness and unknown. It's a beautiful planet that does seem to shine with a light from within. The belch of energy must have represented a kick start. And maybe we can start to come in from the cold and be released from exile somewhat.

The internet has highlighted people's loneliness and isolation maybe as a prelude to some sort of renewed Plutonian bonding beyond just the personal.

27/10/12 8:12 PM  
Blogger kadimiros said...

Joe, you're welcome!

Interestingly, the Saturnalia was a time of free speech.

Perhaps there are dimly recalled clues in the popular notion that Capricorn natives act old when young and act young when old, and in esoteric associations of Capricorn with the solstice, the Christ figure and the unicorn or scapegoat.

There is an ancient linking of the cornucopia, the horn of plenty, to the horn of the Capricorn goat. The horn is also a symbol of discipline, as some ancients conceived of the Sun renewing itself with nourishment while in that constellation.

"I am fascinated by mutual receptions and no astrologer I know of yet can explain them, but you just did the job, I am inclined to believe."

Let's say that we at least could take this mutual reception as an opportunity to uncover some of the forgotten, "buried" (Pluto), attributes, and renew our acquaintance with them as normal ones. It could be a good time to acknowledge the connection between the exteriorized features of experience and unconscious forces.

There will be many others who run away from it all and exhort their fellows to follow them, but that's no reason why we can't do otherwise.

The rulers exchange places, becoming aware for a time of each other's domains. Perhaps they become aware of the ways in which they have always become each other. One wonders: How would each regard the other's realm? What would each glean from the sojourn and leave as gifts for the other?

For each person, it will happen uniquely. I had such an experience earlier this year after an imaginative journey inside a shamanic figure's mental process. It was rather intriguing, almost as if someone else, another consciousness, was looking out through my eyes at the same time as I, allowing me to experience the world a little differently than usual. Perhaps turnabout is cosmic fair play! Or, it could be regarded as an awakening of part of the brain that had not turned its attention outward before, at the same time affording the outer awareness a glimpse within.

27/10/12 9:24 PM  
Blogger kadimiros said...

With Pluto aspecting the outer planets at this time, one may well expect visitations of the chthonic.

Eruptions from the underworld can be disruptive to the point of triggering reactive patterns from as far back as preverbal experiences and other lifetimes, but if one rises to the challenge, the karma can be burned off. Renewal can then follow some time later. It may be wise to reconsider areas in which one has felt held back by constraints or crystallized patterns of any kind, and clearly set one's intention for fresh results and the will/willingness (note the combination) to persist/endure to the other side of Saturn. If one looks at where these things begin, at the stage where they are being formed, one has a chance of changing the habitual manifestation that makes conditions seem intractable.

In the area of presidential politics, both candidates are representatives of the complexing of forces. It is relative to the voter's habitual stance to reality and therefore the political lens adopted. Nevertheless, one representative would naturally be more chthonic in effect than the other. The undecided voters, the muddled, unlensed ones, have the key, and now must choose the door.

28/10/12 9:13 AM  
Blogger jm said...

It could be a good time to acknowledge the connection between the exteriorized features of experience and unconscious forces.


An excellent pursuit.


There will be many others who run away from it all and exhort their fellows to follow them, but that's no reason why we can't do otherwise.


That's the whole story.


The rulers exchange places, becoming aware for a time of each other's domains. Perhaps they become aware of the ways in which they have always become each other. One wonders: How would each regard the other's realm? What would each glean from the sojourn and leave as gifts for the other?


Love it. Mutual reception perfectly described. Your imaginative journey is a good example. I like the image of human born of tree. It takes the shady protectiveness of the tree to a deeper level. I've always felt this comfort from trees. Experiencing the slow death of my favorite tree years ago was a transformative experience (Saturn in my 8th house.) The actual deaths in my life came soon after.

THe exchange of rulerships idea is one I will carry with me. Thanks.

28/10/12 5:37 PM  
Blogger jm said...

Renewal can then follow some time later. It may be wise to reconsider areas in which one has felt held back by constraints or crystallized patterns of any kind, and clearly set one's intention for fresh results and the will/willingness (note the combination) to persist/endure to the other side of Saturn. If one looks at where these things begin, at the stage where they are being formed, one has a chance of changing the habitual manifestation that makes conditions seem intractable.

Now that's encouraging. So we might conclude that the underworld eruptions are represented by the Saturn storm.

Burning off the karma as the country comes to the Pluto return and the governmental ideal gets serious consideration.


In the area of presidential politics, both candidates are representatives of the complexing of forces.


How right you are. Both have heavy Plutonian configurations. They have different variations of the chthonic effect. It's undecided how bitter our medicine will be, but the eruptions are in motion.

It's interesting to note that Pluto goes wholly into the depths, while Uranus often takes a tangential path. Freedom? Bondage? How much bondage does it take to break away into freedom?

28/10/12 5:50 PM  
Blogger kadimiros said...

"Both have heavy Plutonian configurations. They have different variations of the chthonic effect. It's undecided how bitter our medicine will be, but the eruptions are in motion."

One can identify the candidates by their generational conjunctions. The younger, Democratic candidate who articulates the social justice theme has the Saturn-Jupiter conjunction (in Capricorn-Aquarius). The older, Republican candidate who trumpets business efficacy has the Saturn-Pluto conjunction (in Leo).

Focusing on the topmost candidates may not tell the whole story of the times, of course. Two Sabian symbols, for Jupiter and Mars, that appear on Election Day 2012 are:

15-16 Gemini: "A woman agitator stands upon a platform, making an impassioned plea to a surrounding group in men."

22-23 Sagittarius: "A group of immigrants as they fulfill the requirements of entrance into the new country."

They may stand for powers advocating empowerment and opportunity.

For Saturn and Pluto, on the other hand, we have rather less exciting imagery:

3-4 Scorpio: "A youth carries a lighted candle in a devotional ritual."

7-8 Capricorn: "In a sun-lit home domesticated birds sing joyously."

These seem to celebrate tradition and established order but, on a deeper level, here they can be related to both the use and misuse of cultural signifiers, including the political lenses by which the electorate makes sense of the world, and with different measures of success such as the aspirational versus the concrete. In connection with this, the switched domains of the planetary rulers may suggest something interesting (and perhaps awkward) about the polarities at this time. If Pluto is now the standard bearer for rationality and Saturn strives to relate the feeling dimensions, then the world is topsy-turvy indeed.

"It's interesting to note that Pluto goes wholly into the depths, while Uranus often takes a tangential path. Freedom? Bondage? How much bondage does it take to break away into freedom?"

Well, if we mentally play with those symbols, it seems that Uranus and Pluto symbolically contrast the celestial and the underworld.

Uranus, loosed from Saturn's discipline, has an escapist connotation which may not be fully resolving of anything for the long run.

Pluto won't run from its guardianship of buried treasure. I expect that Pluto's form of bondage is created through the loss or disowning of something fundamental and internal, whereas Saturnian limits are environmental or systemically imposed. Matters of recovery or restoration are not usually the concern of Uranus. One may, however, be able to work with it cleverly to those ends where all else fails, and some myths seem to attest to that. But in that case, something more should be the guarantor of outcomes, as Uranus may only illuminate the way and can be led astray by Neptunean substitutions.

28/10/12 10:36 PM  
Blogger jm said...

In connection with this, the switched domains of the planetary rulers may suggest something interesting (and perhaps awkward) about the polarities at this time. If Pluto is now the standard bearer for rationality and Saturn strives to relate the feeling dimensions, then the world is topsy-turvy indeed.

Very interesting idea.

It could be that Pluto makes the cold rationality of Saturn more humanly recognizable and easier to tolerate and even internalize. While Saturn controls the more extreme obsessive/compulsive aspects of Pluto. Not to mention jealousy, revenge, spite, cruelty, envy, and all the others. Saturn theoretically could harness the power of Pluto and put it to use. That sounds wonderful, especially to a Saturn/Pluto conjunction native who has been daunted by the force of this configuration.

1/11/12 8:03 PM  
Blogger jm said...

Meaning that Saturn could safely guide these deep internal phenomena to the surface safely, and ideally guide their passage through external reality. Going along with what you said.

Pluto won't run from its guardianship of buried treasure. I expect that Pluto's form of bondage is created through the loss or disowning of something fundamental and internal, whereas Saturnian limits are environmental or systemically imposed.

1/11/12 8:08 PM  
Blogger kadimiros said...

"While Saturn controls the more extreme obsessive/compulsive aspects of Pluto. Not to mention jealousy, revenge, spite, cruelty, envy, and all the others. Saturn theoretically could harness the power of Pluto and put it to use."

Yes, I think so. Sometimes, supposedly untamed forces aren't really picky, as long as they have some kind of an outlet into manifestation. They can shape creative, artistic vision, for example, or impel one to make long-needed changes in one's life. The bad thing to do is to ignore completely.

When Saturn is regarded as something with which one can work -- it can channel energies or help it climb. If experienced only as obstruction to the life force, then an explosion is logical.

For those who like mythological support, in Sumerian myth, when the goddess Inanna descended to the underworld and became hostage to her dark sister, Ereškigal, several deities refused to intervene. But Enki, created two small asexual beings from dirt to rescue her. Enki was often helpful to, and empowering of, Inanna. He carefully instructed the two small beings to be empathetic to Ereškigal, to soothingly repeat back to Ereškigal her own moans and complaints until her rage quieted enough that they could secure Inanna's release.

"When she says 'Oh my heart', you are to say 'You are troubled, our mistress, oh your heart'. When she says 'Oh my liver', you are to say 'You are troubled, our mistress, oh your liver.'"

Enki, who created human beings from a mixture of a god's blood and earth, seems to be a forerunner of Saturn. He was associated in ancient times with the planet Mercury, and yet his symbols, the goat, the fish, and streams of water flowing from his shoulders, are still dimly remembered in the quadrant of the zodiac once considered his watery domain and later given to Saturn, Jupiter, Uranus and Neptune.

Perhaps in Saturn's visitation to Scorpio, we can hear an echo of the rescue of the executed goddess. In this myth, the goddess is the treasure, the aspect of self that is to be recovered and restored to conscious life.

In turn, Pluto's visitation to Capricorn symbolizes the energy returned from the unconscious, and possibly to a height or an extreme of manifestation. This and, I suspect, other conditions, suggest that this is a time when hidden things, good and bad regardless, become revealed. One might take heed that Inanna's consort (sometimes a shepherd, sometimes a king called the Fisherman) ended up taking her place in the underworld when she discovered that he of all her acquaintances had failed to mourn her passing. Some who were mighty have fallen, some who seemed normal have gone off the deep end for fear of the times, and so on. Things that were normative are no longer that.

This is an interesting dynamic in that it can work out for the attentive. There is an opportunity for renewal after persistance. We can discover unexpected transparencies, penetrate into mysteries, recover forgotten resources and discover new avenues to explore as we face increasingly intense collective forces, natural and human, in the fabric of our lives.

2/11/12 7:36 PM  
Blogger jm said...

So Enki.

Perhaps in Saturn's visitation to Scorpio, we can hear an echo of the rescue of the executed goddess. In this myth, the goddess is the treasure, the aspect of self that is to be recovered and restored to conscious life.

That makes sense. I like the way the miniature beings gently coaxed the wicked one away from her rage. Good point about the anger blocking the good part and only needing to be made impotent through kindness.

It's interesting to note that Enki is Inanna's maternal grandfather which ties in with Saturn as a wise and protective elder, providing a systematic way out of deep trouble.

In Gods of Change, astrologer Howard Sasportas used the Inanna myth as an example of a Pluto transit, covering the themes you mentioned. The sisterly jealousy I suppose represents the conflict between these parts of our consciousness that are really not compatible unless the little creatures tame the dark goddess.

Seven portals lead into the depths of the underworld. Ereshkigal orders Inanna to pass through these gates, and at each portal the queen of heaven must strip something off -- her garments, her robes, her jewels -- until she arrives in the deepest underworld utterly naked. Then she is instructed to bow before Ereshkigal, to honor the force that has stripped her.

Interesting. Sounds familiar. The stripping away of pretense and false dependencies, always a welcome phenomenon in the end.

Inanna's servant, Ninshubar, appeals for help. She approaches Inanna's father and grandfather and pleads with them to do what they can to rescue Inanna. Both reply that they can do nothing to alter what Ereshkigal decrees. Here we have two strong masculine figures who have no power over the dark goddess, meaning the masculine perogative of force and subjugation (which would suppress or fight an opponent) is not what is needed to deal with Ereshkigal. Taking a heroic stance does not work. If we try and battle with her, she will only retaliate more ferociously than before.

This verifies the feminine power of Pluto and Scorpio and its real dangers. Saturn comes in again with the cautious male figures.

Also interesting is that the little creatures are "Mourners", which leads to the theme of mourning our losses as a preliminary on the route to redemption. And rather than more anger in grief, their gentle alluring approach is the way to prevail.

The Mourners have been taught by Enki to affirm the life force even if it reveals itself through pain and suffering. Even in darkness and negativity, there is still something to honor, something to be redeemed.

Or....something to value. This is a big theme in my consciousness.

Good choice of myths. Finally...

Inanna was stripped of everything that had given her an identity, and she was left for dead, yet she rose again renewed. The only way we can find out we have the capacity to survive our own ego death is to go through that death. When everything we thought we were is taken away, we discover a part of us that is still there -- the aspect of our being that is eternal and indestructible. When what we thought supported us is taken away, we find out what really supports us. This is the gift of Pluto/Ereshkigal.

Great description of Pluto and Saturn. Looks like we have some grand and interesting growth opportunities looming.

I have the conjunction natally so I'm sitting pretty. I'll know what to do. I'm kind of looking forward to meeting the little mourning munchkins.

It all does so remind me of the hot vortex in the Saturn storm. Is Saturn the gatekeeper?

5/11/12 2:16 PM  
Blogger kadimiros said...

"The stripping away of pretense and false dependencies, always a welcome phenomenon in the end."

She is life suppressed, always present and volatile, that fuels madness or brings a doomful fate. All the external wounds she inflicted on her sister were reflections of her internal wounds. She unmasks false appearances, inauthenticity, the disguised vulnerabilities that must be acknowledged if we are to approach the sacred. It may be illuminating to compare how the different faith traditions visualize psychospiritual dynamics in their respective ways.

"This verifies the feminine power of Pluto and Scorpio and its real dangers. Saturn comes in again with the cautious male figures."

It's interesting that Enki sends asexual beings to negotiate with the dark goddess. Although they serve Enki's purposes, they are not aligned against her nor opposed to her, thus they avoid her oppositional aspects. Also appropriate here: As a trait of biological organisms, empathy is far older than the human species, and possibly predates the appearance of mammals.

"It all does so remind me of the hot vortex in the Saturn storm. Is Saturn the gatekeeper?"

The myths dovetail in interesting ways, and there may be a mystery behind the mysteries in that. The calendar dates of his annual festival and the conflation with several other mythological entities (e.g., Cronus and Chronus) caused Saturn to be linked to concepts of time and its renewal (the old year leaving as an elderly man, the new one entering as a babe). It's as if ideas have a kind of natural magnetic affinity, with similar ones clustering together.

I believe that when we focus on polymorphic symbols and what they reference, when we knowingly deal in metaphors, we touch on actualities that can never be entirely contained by the symbols.

I imagine that there are ways to access a calming yet potent state, like the eye of a hurricane, or a null point between polarities. From this pivotal position, formerly intractable conditions are seen, felt, and become amenable to new accords. Then a change of direction is possible.

The creatures of Enki performed an analogous feat. They did not run from the contractive suffering of the goddess, they entered into it while tenderly holding it with an attentional spaciousness that facilitated release. It's as though time gave birth to space, and space led to release and new expression.

I think that each planet can be considered a gatekeeper of its own domain, but we could hypothesize that the gate of Saturn is at a metalevel which can look backward at the inner planets, as you or I can look back at the events of the old year, assess them, and look forward to new directions. The brilliant hues of the inner planets are always mixing to become his darker, richer tones, even as the passage of years accumulate the younger versions of oneself within the older.

In the political realm, the electorate is currently at an impasse, lacking consensus and coherent orientation, and this is a deeper cause of the D.C. gridlock, political whiplash and the close presidential elections of our present era where the elected mistake their election for a mandate. The electorate is dashing between polarized factions, with competing interpretations of reality and the resultant arguments over how to achieve a more perfect union.

So, your instinct is wise to attribute significant responsibility to the electorate. The electorate claims that it wants bipartisan cooperation, but it continues to live in an ever more sharply divided mansion where moderates are punished for openness to compromise. So, the compromise, the "together promise" of mutual fulfillment, has seemed beyond reach, and disappointment is a key word as the electorate searches again for a savior promising renewal. Nevertheless, while many bemoan the foreground lack of change, change continues in the background and it may be that only with much later hindsight can they see how much has shifted.

5/11/12 8:16 PM  
Blogger jm said...

I imagine that there are ways to access a calming yet potent state, like the eye of a hurricane, or a null point between polarities. From this pivotal position, formerly intractable conditions are seen, felt, and become amenable to new accords. Then a change of direction is possible.

I think so. I think it happens with the lunation every month. So the hurricane falling on the last full moon could have heralded a new direction. I'm going to further investigate the Taurus-Scorpio axis for clues.


The creatures of Enki performed an analogous feat. They did not run from the contractive suffering of the goddess, they entered into it while tenderly holding it with an attentional spaciousness that facilitated release.


Attentional spaciousness. I like that. The asexual aspect also gets my notice, as you pointed out. I think that facilitates the trust. Many of the dark goddess negatives are attached to sexual impulses whether or not sex is actually implicated. The absence of sexual demand might cause the goddess to relax somewhat and trust enough to let go and reveal these parts of her nature without judgement and shame.

Scorpio is thought of as sexual, but many Scorpios are sexually abstinent as a way to avoid using sex as power and to gain self mastery. Some don't fully agree about the fun and pleasure aspect, but view sexual relations as problematic. People are loathe to admit this, but some spiritual practitioners, musicians, and artists know how to circulate sexual energy for creative purposes.

Yes. Saturn is the gate from the personal to the transpersonal. And in the wheel, the Scorpio 8th house also serves that purpose. Maybe the mutual reception is a chance to proceed to a new level of transpersonal engagement. Politically, The ultra personal nature of the campaign and the vicious below the belt character assassination could have been the release of the dark goddess impulses as a prelude to some more elevated interspersonal interaction. I suppose I'm being too optimistic once again.

True about the polarization and the intensity of desire for a mandate. This election was interesting in that the mandate stubbornly refused to come. Kind of amusing.

A further connection is the Scorpionic insurance mandate of the health care law now looming as a huge challenge for the body politic. The law has incredible Pluto placements with Mars and Saturn, and something else, in a very tight grand cross. There's a lot to deal with there as the mutual reception plays out.

So, the compromise, the "together promise" of mutual fulfillment, has seemed beyond reach, and disappointment is a key word as the electorate searches again for a savior promising renewal

Heheh. I think reality has arrived. Time to give up for a minute. We're on our own.

Nevertheless, while many bemoan the foreground lack of change, change continues in the background and it may be that only with much later hindsight can they see how much has shifted.

I think you've pinpointed the last election. People voted against obvious change, perhaps sensing that it is unavoidable and will come in unexpected ways.

Interesting how the last one was a vote for glorious change, false as it might have been in promise, and moved to anti-change even though it's sorely needed. The Saturn in Scorpio transit will prepare and motivate them. Something will have to be scrificed, though, I think, and I'm at a loss as to what that might be.


7/11/12 7:11 PM  
Blogger jm said...

So now bipartisan cooperation is the latest fashion. We shall see. Uranus in Aries is not exactly amenable to that kind if thing. Pluto in Capricorn lacks the required sentimentality. Who says we have to love one another? With Saturn out of Libra, cooperation might be a thing of the past. Notice how nice they all were? (:o)

The fracturing of the electorate seems close to complete, so the shifts and realignments could be forthcoming.

7/11/12 7:18 PM  
Blogger jm said...

The Enki creatures remind me of the eunuchs of the Chinese courts who knew the full extent of the evils of the Empress. They were privy to her thoughts and feelings like no others and they were highly trusted before betrayal, punishment, and murder ensued.

7/11/12 7:24 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

~mpk It was my impression that Romney was a good guy... I wanted to support him, but I felt that Obama didn't deserve to be defeated due to failures to get things done that seemed to me to be caused by mean spirited obstructionism which he faced at every turn. The GOP refused to work with him no matter what the issue, even on laws it would have supported if Obama hadn't been president. It just didn't feel right to me that that kind of politics should be rewarded. I think a lot of Americans felt the same, and voted against the politics of sabotage more than for either of the candidates as individuals.

All that said, those are just my feelings... this is the first time I did not vote in a presidential election.

8/11/12 12:20 PM  
Blogger jm said...

I used to back out of voting and I'm still fine with that decision. Unless I have someone to vote for, I won't vote. Good for you. If you are unsure the best thing to do is wait till the next time.

It's known that Obama was even more reluctant to work with the opposition than the Republicans were. He is not liked in D.C. and apparently doesn't like political gamesmanship.

His 7th house Pluto indicates that he compulsively seeks approval and is afraid of direct confrontation, so the reports of his refusal to battle it out make sense. Expect more of the same coming soon.

Independents prefer bipartisanship and the politicians know it. So the idea that Republicans stopped that process is hard to believe considering they like to win Indie votes and elections.

Romney has experience with bringing disparate groups together which is one big reason I supported him. But that time isn't here yet.

I agree that the voters are against sabotage but they were manipulated and duped into believing that it was the Reps' fault. That and the idea that the rest of it was Bush's fault. It's simply inaccurate. We have both parties in power so cooperation will eventually have to come. Neither party is innocent nor more guilty than the other. In fact, Harry Reid has already started his effort to block any Republican effort in the Senate and he's vicious.

I'm slowly returning to my non(anti) partisan position. But half the country is Republican and they need to be represented in the government too. One party rule is dangerous. But we're safe. It never lasts for long in our system.

Congratulations on sitting this one out. It's not easy in an environment where people are made to feel remiss, or even criminal, in foregoing their duties as a voting citizen. Dissenting is just as important. Excellent.

8/11/12 3:40 PM  
Blogger jm said...

By the end of this campaign neither man was appealing to most voters it seems. Obama supporters follow him automatically, but Romney was totally brutalized and demonized, so people were blinded by the intensity of hatred and could not possibly see him clearly or in a good light. Even Republicans ripped him to shreds and I think it's amazing he did so well.

This was the most depraved campaign I've ever witnessed. Obama's final ads were shocking and frightening. The sexual emphasis was not good for a prude like me, and the force of emotional violence made me terribly uncomfortable. The game of personal attack and character assassination casts dark clouds over our ability to see who could do the best job and help us solve our problems. It was degrading both to the candidates and to all of us. The impulse to thrust those horrid images into our minds worries me. But what concerns me most is the malaise circulating in the body politic that supports this kind of barbaric behavior. Even desires it.

So withdrawing from the process is good. It's a start if we ever want a more dignified society. Withholding a vote is like a boycott and it looks like many people had the same idea. Voter turnout was way down. The more I think about it, this could be a good sign.

The winner is off to a bad start as a result of this torment. Only 46% liked his acceptance speech. It was a bizarre election. It seemed unreal to me.

I hope we do better next time. If not, I won't be participating.

8/11/12 9:11 PM  
Blogger jm said...

The most important and consistent factor resulting from this process is that the American people don't feel that their elected officials represent them and they have little choice in the matter. The rift between the government and the citizens seems to be recalcitrant. Obama promises to care for the people, but he doesn't either. His allegiance is to big money as much as the Republicans. And to unenlightened rich celebrities.

The people know it and the next phase of political life is bound to be the rebellion of the citizens. When the people feel strangled they eventually get frustrated enough to take action and they probably will. The winner this time is going to be saddled with this looming problem. People are already organizing and preparing to protest. It might work out after we get restructuring and new representatives that have our interests in mind. If they don't, they won't get our votes. We need to be reunited with our power.

8/11/12 9:29 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

~mpk

Obama's final ads were shocking and frightening. The sexual emphasis was not good for a prude like me, and the force of emotional violence made me terribly uncomfortable. The game of personal attack and character assassination casts dark clouds over our ability to see who could do the best job and help us solve our problems. It was degrading both to the candidates and to all of us. The impulse to thrust those horrid images into our minds worries me. But what concerns me most is the malaise circulating in the body politic that supports this kind of barbaric behavior.

I don't think I saw a single political ad from either side... I don't watch any tv. This makes me wonder about what the true influence of the PACs really is. I heard Karl Rove spent 300 million alone. But I never saw any of that. I also did not watch the debates. I noticed the voter turnout among the young is high. While I no longer count myself among the young, I am fully of the internet age. I think the young, like me, aren't even paying much attention at all to the traditional media and get most of their information from facebook and online new sources.

9/11/12 9:19 AM  
Blogger kadimiros said...

Hmm, I don't watch television either. I don't expect the debates to be informative about issues and policies. It seemed that I could feel the gist of how the debates were being perceived if I thought about them briefly. Incumbents almost invariably lose the first debate, I later read, so it fit the usual pattern.

This cycle, I didn't even look at the candidates' astrological charts until jm mentioned their heavy Plutonian configurations (in response to my comment about their "chthonic" appearance to some voters).

9/11/12 3:46 PM  
Blogger kadimiros said...

Neither campaign prioritized making the personal case for their respective candidates. Reportedly, the Romney family wanted to highlight the "real Mitt" sooner but his campaign advisors deliberately chose to delay the personal narratives. It did not fit their strategy. It would be interesting to know just how much of his presentations before audiences was shaped by advisors. The reality of the candidates took a back seat to the chosen strategies of the campaign advisors.

But my overview of the outcome of the presidential elections says that the campaigns did not change the default outcome. The vast majority of the voters chose as they would likely have chosen regardless of the candidates and their campaigns. They are using their party affiliation as a proxy for other issues. An extraordinary candidacy could temporarily alter that behavior, but both sides fell short of that in this cycle.

In general, campaigns have not been the most determinative factors (assuming that opposing campaigns are comparably competent), but they are the ones that political parties believe that are most under their control, and by which means they hope to sway the public.

Billionnaires might do better to simply ask the public who they thought would win the election and to accept their answer before investing in expensive campaigns. The public's consensus expectation on this matter reportedly has a very high rate of predictive success. Individual expectations are another matter, as they run the gamut. Yesterday, an acquaintance suggested with all seriousness to me that the candidates were shapeshifting alien space lizards. Two other acquaintances declared the death of the American economy and permanent rates of high unemployment. I could immediately see how their conclusions revealed much about them.

Probably of more enduring interest to me, a record number of women were elected this cycle, New Hampshire having special focus as the "new matriarchy".

9/11/12 4:16 PM  
Blogger jm said...

A, let me confess that I am terrifically envious of you.

I don't think I saw a single political ad from either side.

You are so smart. I don't have a TV but the internet was infested with these things. I will be haunted for a long time. It was up to me to avoid this poison, which I normally do, but failed to accomplish this time. You did the right thing. Anyone with a modicum of self respect would excuse herself from this type of behavior, and next time, I will. My original impulse was to stay away from this one, but I caved to my lower self and suffered the consequences. Live and learn. I admire you.

The Obama campaign , not his PAC, spent about 300 million painting a hideous and entirely false picture of Governor Romney. You can imagine what a challenge that was since it took so much money. They began when he was still in the primary process and could not counter the attacks.

The debates were to be missed so you did the right thing there.

The whole process is one of mind games and that kind of psychological manipulation can be dangerous. That remains my main concern in all of this. As societies go into decline the seeds of authoritative control sprout and sometimes take hold. I have to remain optimistic, but this campaign was a downer.

I've always trusted the young to lead us well, and their movement away from the media is a good sign. The media are now an arm of the government and that was one of the most shocking parts of this event. To watch these people do this with no reservation, and nobody with influence speaking up, is not a good sign.

The ideal is to watch and think for ourselves. Draw our own conclusions. I still did that this time, but to be engulfed in the torrential spill of sewage will leave a disturbing imprint. I've always seen this, though, and now I can retreat with further wisdom and relief to be back on my philosophical perch.

It was awful. The gleeful crucifixion of Governor Romney was astonishing and it's still going on. They can't get off the obsessive/compulsive track. No wonder with so many Scorpio factors in play. It will have to run its course. It's interesting to ponder the reasons for this cruel and destructive group effort, and soon I hope to draw some conclusions. The Obama campaign made the theme of their campaign "Kill Romney", not a particularly enlightened and uplifting endeavor I must say. It will probably park itself in the collective unconscious, among all the other cruelties they so relish.

9/11/12 4:18 PM  
Blogger jm said...

Kadimiros, our conversation about the chthonic was highly applicable along with the other Plutonian factors. The repercussions interest me now since the configurations will continue.

The reality of the candidates took a back seat to the chosen strategies of the campaign advisors.

Yup. It's all about winning. High tech politicians sacrificing humanness to the cause.

But my overview of the outcome of the presidential elections says that the campaigns did not change the default outcome. The vast majority of the voters chose as they would likely have chosen regardless of the candidates and their campaigns. They are using their party affiliation as a proxy for other issues. An extraordinary candidacy could temporarily alter that behavior, but both sides fell short of that in this cycle.

Yes. That's probably a very good thing since I'm wary of an all powerful figure dominating society.

The public's consensus expectation on this matter reportedly has a very high rate of predictive success. Individual expectations are another matter, as they run the gamut

Good point. The predictions were numerous and tedious no doubt. And mostly wrong. That validates my tendency to avoid predictions and my effort not to be influenced by those of others.

9/11/12 4:32 PM  
Blogger jm said...

So my original view that it didn't matter who won was the right one. With Neptune stationing at 0 Pisces we are in a fog and things are not what they seem. There's a lot of chatter right now as they try to analyze and figure it out, but Pisces interferes. Some say that next Monday when Neptune goes direct, a change will be perceived, but I don't follow those things so much anymore. I'm mostly interested in this journey to the underworld we're still engaged in that supposedly ends in self discovery or some such treasure.

The election wandered through a circle of hell and it remains to be seen when and where the next turn will be.

I'm glad I survived without losing a body part or my tentative sanity.

9/11/12 4:42 PM  
Blogger kadimiros said...

Heh. Well, it may matter, though it can be difficult to know exactly how beforehand. So one must make decisions based on, hopefully good, proxy data. With Neptunean things, it is often better to wait and see for certain.

To that point, I think that neither candidate can be nearly what they wish to be in this time. Indeed, I read that the strongest Republicans chose not to run for the highest elective office in this cycle. This seems rather telling. Perhaps they knew something. There was ever more negativity due to the flood of money, so they were wisest to refrain.

And the excessive money and media buys were not convincingly helpful in the end. Super PACs strategically err if they narrowly focus on advertising while neglecting to empower and support voters in practical ways; that would have been much clearer given a more contemporary understanding of behavioral research elucidating the translation of intention to action.

On underworld perception and proxy data: A fearful truth is that college students, when shown muted videos of unfamiliar candidates from dozens of past gubernatorial elections could, more often than not, correctly identify the winners. When they were allowed to hear the candidate's words and stated policy positions, their accuracy fell to chance levels. (Some believe this mostly means that words obscure charisma. I think that, additionally, the candidate's bodies knew when they were on uncertain ground or on firm, and that bodies can tell parallel or different stories. That may even the playing field for the less charismatic. I am not an expert on this, but I have felt puzzled by aspects of Romney's body language the few times I caught glimpses in video of him speaking. It does not tell me what he was thinking, but I start wondering over the history behind them, and what he looked like when he spoke as a high priest.)

Perhaps there is an heuristic here. When unaided by such tools as big data algorithms and empirical testing, in some matters one can know more from less, and less from more. For example, I feel disinclined to analyze a horoscope to exhausting detail, lest it bring effective use down to chance levels. It may be better for me to be guided by a little underworld sense and sensibility.

Speaking of the chthonic: I sometimes amuse myself with comparing U.S. presidential elections to stories of ancient cyclical king-sacrifices, especially since elections follow closely on the heels of Halloween. Something I bear in mind, along with comparisons to multiple personalty syndrome, when observing elections.

10/11/12 12:38 PM  
Blogger jm said...

I read that the strongest Republicans chose not to run for the highest elective office in this cycle. This seems rather telling. Perhaps they knew something. There was ever more negativity due to the flood of money, so they were wisest to refrain.

Even more than that, the economic decline now seems inevitable and it could be big. The Republicans dodged a bullet this time, and along with the employment troubles, the entitlement programs will likely be slashed. It will fall on the Democrats' backs, while the Republicans will give them a few votes, but will emerge as the defenders of Medicare and SS. They waited until they can charge in on the white horse and save the economy.

Austerity is indicated by Pluto in Capricorn, but now the party responsible will be the Dems.

the candidate's bodies knew when they were on uncertain ground or on firm, and that bodies can tell parallel or different stories

Absolutely. Body language is articulate. I normally watch speeches with the sound off. The conflicted messages really throw people off since I believe they are stimulating different brain parts, notably the amygdala, which registers danger and runs to the cerebral cortex quickly and back down. It's too much to analyze when they are watching and listening and the attempt to piece it together after the fact is difficult, thus pushing them to rely on others' interpretations. This leads of course to successful propaganda. So in some respects, the people don't really make their own choices, although an underlying current of recognition seems to be operative.

A lot of times, Romney didn't seem to be thinking, but responding. He was heavily entwined with crowd response. It's interesting you mention the high priest. That image has returned repeatedly in my mind. His concession speech was fascinating. Not like others I've heard. You might go back and check it out for some insight into what you are perceiving.

With so many Pisces and Scorpio planets he did a lot of merging and immersion, rather than communicating thoughts for their own sake, regarding your thinking comment. He functioned more on the emotional level and seemed to prioritize that connection.

Perhaps there is an heuristic here. When unaided by such tools as big data algorithms and empirical testing, in some matters one can know more from less, and less from more. For example, I feel disinclined to analyze a horoscope to exhausting detail, lest it bring effective use down to chance levels. It may be better for me to be guided by a little underworld sense and sensibility.

Completely applicable. More from less and less from more. Well said. That's exactly my approach to astrology. And that's why your astrological impressions are so good.

I also apply it to candidate evaluation, so I pay little attention to policy promises and all that.

Yeah. Sacrifices and mental disturbance. Elections. Halloween. Vampires, spooks, and slithering creatures. Thing is, the Halloween vibe is going to continue with the mutual reception and all the rest. I guess I'll eat a lot of garlic, which will double as a way to keep my pressure down.

Pressure drop. That could be coming. My brain capillaries are widening as we speak.


10/11/12 8:36 PM  
Blogger kadimiros said...

I suspected that he has certain relational behaviors that he falls into and has used before, and I speculated on their origins and intended effect. The behaviors are more suitable to some audiences. He also has some mannerisms that may indicate internal tensions or conflicts, and they may be undermining his message. This could be related to his heavy mix of emotional Pisces-Scorpio that you pointed out.

Although he presents himself as a man of cutting-edge business who made a living dealing with (financial) numbers, in the end he and the right wing relied much on emotion to fuel his campaign. In ironic contrast, the left wing has a shockingly efficient, metrics-based approach to strengthen their natural voter base and to get out the vote. This could be another example of reversal from normal expectations, metaphorically related to the mutual reception. The GOP will be taking a hard look at how its aged advisors with top-down hierarchy and authority have fallen far behind the younger generations in this regard. One may reflect that opposing factions normally co-evolve over long periods, and wonder.

This context recalls for me that Romney is a chosen representative of organized religions in the realm of politics. The man in such a position may be good or bad but, aside from that, the position itself has positive and negative aspects and messages of its own. This inclines me to play a metaphysical game here and look at the candidacy as if it were a Tarot card.

There are a number of cards that might work, but let's choose the more obvious one for our current line of thought. If we look to The Hierophant (also called The High Priest or The Pope), its personal meanings include assistance, alliance, religious interests, good advice, enlightened leadership as well as (when reversed) lies, persecution, and false prophethood.

The Hierophant can symbolize an upright figure who is seen as a pillar of the community. It is also a form of the superego, the internalized parents. (Notably, Romney's father, too, ran for president and had his own problematic encounters with the press and with the counterculture.) Some connect The Hierophant with the Ten of Swords, the sacrificial martyr whose path leads to sanctified death; in some decks the two cards share the same hand gesture of blessing. The Ten of Swords' frightening imagery represents the lowest point before new hope. With Romney's losing the race, one is reminded that failure is an important lesson on the path of one's development, and that success and failure are both tests of maturity.

The Hierophant, a signifier of social order (associated with Saturn), has its shadow projection in the card known as The Devil (Pluto), a source of strength through resistance, the inconvenient adversary who is sometimes a necessary ally. To avoid being too simplistic about our correspondences, and to play up the mutual reception theme, on this level, we note that Romney is seen as a rather Plutonian representative of traditional social order, and Obama is seen as a rather Saturnian representative of the inheritors of counterculture. It does suggest that the electorate is puzzling out problems from different directions.

Perhaps more interesting, and on a slightly higher level, stepping farther away from immersion in conflict, The Hierophant is said to be a warning to the querent to re-examine the structure of the world and its powers, and to beware hypocrisy. We could also say that it means that the querent is only ready to begin to begin to understand what it means to be part of something bigger. Here, I suggest, the electorate is the querent.

When we willingly depolarize a little with respect to the candidates, then we see play how they play roles for the collective. (I am not saying that one should not vote, of course. There should be competition of ideas and policies.) If we view the candidates as actors in a drama, and that the collective is a participatory audience, then we can step outside the perceptual frame and see more.

11/11/12 1:55 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Good blog entry from Ursula Leguin : "Restraint"
http://www.ursulakleguin.com/Blog2012.html#New

11/11/12 5:01 PM  
Blogger jm said...

What a lovely woman, A. Thank you so much for the link. That's an uplifting corner of the world. It's heartening for me to see an old woman like that still active, hopeful and engaged, although some of the resigned pessimism is apparent that often comes toward the end of life. She carries it well.

She touches on some of the things we are experiencing, and that also is encouraging. The lack of enthusiasm for the out of touch political world and the longing for genuine sacrifice and compassion is something probably many of us share. I suppose we could use good leadership in our little circles to spread some of this goodwill around with a bit of coordination. A political life divorced from the traditional one. One tailored just for us. I like the literary world. Apparently the recent public events have struck a discordant tone with lots of people. Thankfully.

A glimmer of the anthropological outlook keeps me from believing that life was ever simple for anybody, anywhere, at any time. All old people are nostalgic for certain things they knew that are gone, but I live in the past very little. So why am I feeling like an exile?

The exile idea intrigues me. I used to live in that realm more, before I started voting. Or maybe it's the natural progression at the end of life. Perhaps it's easier to leave the material world when one feels that way. She's a writer and I've always thought there was an element of that in most good writers.

Very interesting. Thank you.

Can America go on living on spin and illusion, hot air and hogwash, and still be my country? I don’t know

I don't know either.

And finally...

I wish the ideals of respecting truth and sharing the goods hadn't become so foreign to my country that my country begins to seem foreign to me.

I think many of us are feeling like aliens in a changing environment we still can't fully interpret. Although I've always thought the world around me is bizarre. I enter with caution.

11/11/12 11:59 PM  
Blogger jm said...

When we willingly depolarize a little with respect to the candidates, then we see play how they play roles for the collective. (I am not saying that one should not vote, of course. There should be competition of ideas and policies.) If we view the candidates as actors in a drama, and that the collective is a participatory audience, then we can step outside the perceptual frame and see more.

That of course is exactly what I'm doing now. The retrospective view often brings clarity. What a great analysis you did with the cards.

I get the High Priest vibe strongly, so the Heirophant makes good sense. The reversed persecution factor stands out the most to me. As I mentioned previously, the continuous persecution and ridicule that went on from all sides astonished me and I knew there was something to it. I thought it would end, but it didn't. It's still going on.

Liz Greene in the Mythic Tarot assigns Chiron to the Hierophant. I was thinking of the wounded healer factor and if his wounding was a route to some collective healing through Plutonian catharsis. The hate didn't fit the man and people get out of control when discussing him.

The saint and sinner aspect of Pisces figures in as the sin of capitalism has been raging. Most see him that way. As a sinner and rich man. So are their own sins of greed and covetousness finding their hook?
Others see him as a saintly type for all of his public service and his humility in that area. Some credit him for saving their lives in some way.

The Hierophant as symbol of traditional religion is interesting as the country seems to be undergoing a religious crisis. By rejecting the High Priest maybe they are expressing resentment of authority as part of the whole Pluto in Capricorn phase. He was so obvious about his religious devotion. Maybe people feared the religious dogma, or perhaps they feared their inability to live up to high moral standards. The campaign certainly didn't.

When he chose to stick to his moral standards and refrain from dirty combat, I felt that maybe the attacks on him were expressing resentent of his high and mighty stance and a reminder of their own shame. The Heirophant and Pluto fit that theme.

The Ten of Swords and the sacrificial martyr theme fits perfectly. I wonder what the sacrifice left us with. Maybe some higher knowledge through the Hierophant. Maybe some eventual healing through Chiron and the release of suffering with Pisces. Neptune is in his 10th house just about to go direct. Public responsibility. I found him to be an intriguing candidate, not like others I'd seen before, and I think his influence is subtle and will continue. A vanishing Pisces.

Hopefully the experience will leave us relieved, and even renewed.

12/11/12 12:38 AM  
Blogger jm said...

The Hierophant is said to be a warning to the querent to re-examine the structure of the world and its powers, and to beware hypocrisy. We could also say that it means that the querent is only ready to begin to begin to understand what it means to be part of something bigger. Here, I suggest, the electorate is the querent.

Good conclusion.

12/11/12 12:44 AM  
Blogger kadimiros said...

"Liz Greene in the Mythic Tarot assigns Chiron to the Hierophant. I was thinking of the wounded healer factor and if his wounding was a route to some collective healing through Plutonian catharsis."

It should point that way to the wiser ones. Those who pushed him forward as their chosen warrior are disillusioned, and this fate is now given him due to the enormity of the forces he has called into his experience -- but it is also a clue to all (regardless of one's political stances) to take heed of the conditions that shape such narratives. That The Hierophant's path leads to the Ten of Swords implies that purification of ego (ego death) is needed.

I have not considered cards relating to the election's winner, President Obama. I think his cards would be different from those relating to the election's loser. They have different stories that for a time intersect. So, I would not assign, say, The Devil to his story as The Devil is The Shadow and not necessarily the real. But the more strident on the political right may not understand in their depiction and rejection of him as their Devil is that he too is a collective manifestation which they have helped raise to power through long resistance to new energy. (The Devil symbolizes an endless source of strength through resistance.) As The Other, he fits very well their attraction to opposition and dichotomy. This will repeatedly happen in some way, fears seeming to materialize for confronting.

Obama's story is not yet done, so indicative cards could change over time. For the moment, I might consider The Emperor, and its shadow, The Lightning Struck Tower. The Emperor, too, does not represent Obama personally so much as his position or situation. On this level, Obama is the latest incarnation of the Emperor; we simply have a new one every four or eight years or so. So its lessons return in different form.

The Emperor, who bears the symbol of the eagle on his protective shield, is said to represent the ultimate male ego at the top of the secular hierarchy. Archetypally, he seems to be the ruler of the world. But in reality, when the card appears for the querent, there is a deeper lesson of acceptance that not all things can, nor should, be controlled. When we overreach, we encounter loss and diminishing of benefit.

The Emperor is numerologically connected to Death, a reminder to those who forget the requirements of the position. The Emperor's shadow is The Lightning Struck Tower. In the Tarot deck's natural order, The Tower follows immediately after The Devil.

Having already experienced several manifestations of The Tower with the previous incarnation of The Emperor, the collective chose an apparently more cautious, conciliatory, yet optimistic figure. Nevertheless, the position and its ever-present shadow has molded his time of governance and continues to do so. The Tower has a number of connections which are appropriate, but one is to the story of the Tower of Babel, the project of humanity which was undone when mutual misunderstandings (or disagreements) overwhelmed the cooperative spirit. The challenges represented by The Emperor and his shadow do not go away no matter whom the collective raises, except as the collective itself transforms.

(A note on complementary cards: These are revealed when the Major Arcana is arranged in the form of a leminscate, the figure 8, symbol of infinity. The arrangement is composed of two wheels that meet where two cards overlap at its center; the two cards are, appropriately, The Wheel of Fortune and The World. Strength and Justice should follow the older order and not be exchanged as in some modern decks.)

12/11/12 9:43 AM  
Blogger jm said...

Liz connects the Emperor to the father principle and this applies accurately to President Obama in his search for father and identity with his own father's quest and legacy. His desire to right the wrongs of the colonial powers. The control and overreach you mention could be represented by the ruler of the world approach to making these corrections on a grand scale. "Fair play" in a big way. The overreach could come as a new form of reverse racism which is showing up currently but could lose power quickly. Some even believe that the white patriarchy is being undone, but one has to take into account the length of time it takes to come into power and how long it takes for reversals. There are still quite a few white people in the world. Problems arise when the Caucasians of a darker shade want to find their rightful place in the hierarchy.

So the Emperor fits in this turmoil around the patriarchies still dominant worldwide. I guess the ideal is a wise, just, and ethical ruler of all, aware of the shadow. but experienced enough to carry it without excessive impediment to the accomplishment of goals. The optimist would hope that as the revolving wheel of rulers turns, a good one will eventually come up.

The Emperor and his shadow do not go away no matter whom the collective raises, except as the collective itself transforms.

Right O.

The Tower makes sense with the Pluto/Saturn events ahead. I love the Tower of Babel reference. One reason I'm so fond of Fellini's films is his exploration of this theme. The Tower of Babel persists with all collective gatherings, but the people find ways to enjoy togetherness despite the miscommunication and breakdowns in cooperation. Nothing much gets done, but what is there really to get done anyway?
In his films, they all stay together in their bumbling chaotic sometimes joyous way. Cooperation is not exactly what people might think it is.

Applied to modern times, the disagreements are obvious, but maybe an acceptance of that inevitability and a way to be less afraid of it could work as a temporary solution. What's a little civil war among friends, anyway?

13/11/12 3:08 AM  
Blogger kadimiros said...

"Some even believe that the white patriarchy is being undone, but one has to take into account the length of time it takes to come into power and how long it takes for reversals."

Well, I recently heard that it takes a working class family surname hundreds of years to reach average representation at the highest socioeconomic levels. Sweden, which has less income disparity, has the most social mobility, and India is the most rigid because of its historic caste system limiting intermarriage. Otherwise, neither place nor year nor war nor revolution nor industry nor theory of government nor social policy has, apparently, made a difference to the average rate of social mobility. Despite the American faith in self-sufficiency, 60% of most individuals' outcomes is correlatable to the family base from which they start (or established at the time of conception for those who take stock in such things, heh).

Hmm, "colonial powers" sounds a bit like the D'Souza book I saw among other books in the store. You know, aside from an occasional news article, I have felt disinclined to read much written for, against, or about the presidential candidates of this year and past years. Never wanted to read a book authored by a presidential candidate, either.

In fact, I suspect that for the vast majority of elections (including 2004, 2008 and 2012) the competing candidates and their campaigns have not been as determinative as people imagine as to which political party won control of the White House. The electorate leans toward making broader calculations, sometimes going one way, sometimes going another. Even many who seem to strongly favor of a candidate probably aren't really for the candidate but for their own preferences; they just think it is the candidate.

We seem to have had a slight pendulum swing back to 2009 in some ways. It will be interesting to see what the next mid-term elections look like, and then the next presidential election. The economic trend is a strong indicator of the long-term fortunes of political groups, which reminds me that it is the electorate who ultimately decides, however imperfectly, on the prevailing policies of governance. We should probably trust the electorate, whichever way it goes, in the long haul.

The Tower of Babel/Babylon (Babylon probably from Babilu, the "Gate of God" linked to Capricorn), is an intriguing metaphor. On the one hand, it seems to portray a negative end result but, on the other hand, perhaps some things were fated to happen the way that they did. Monoculture can be fatal, or at least fatally boring.

13/11/12 7:37 PM  

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