Planet Waves by Eric Francis | Nov. 12, 1999


By Eric Francis
Weekly for Nov. 12, 1999. Horoscope is below.

Copyright ©1999 by Planet Waves Digital Media, all rights reserved. Comet of the Moon (Hale-Bopp) photo courtesy of Astronomy Picture of the Day.

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Turn, turn, turn
.......While astrologer Jonathan Cainer (London Daily Mail) has kept us entertained with his global survey of absurd millennium products, things like commemorative ice cream flavors and Y2K compliant shoe laces, I've been pondering the meaning that the turning of an age has. In particular, I am questioning whether it's really possible to arbitrarily designate the time that the next era of history begins, just like rolling out a new Gap advertising campaign. I think this is one little message of the millennium ice cream jokes.
.......Usually it's inventions like bronze, the machine gun or nuclear power that are more influential in defining a phase of history, and from these things there seems to be no turning back. We can only go forward, and hopefully, see that there are choices in the road along the way -- choices for things besides Year 2000 Marshmallows and ordinary ones.
.......In a recent Libra monthly horoscope, I mentioned that I had begun rereading The Lord of the Rings by J.R.R. Tolkien. It took me a month to move through its 1,000 pages, and given the number of blank stares I received when people asked me what I was reading and I showed them the cover, I gather that this book has somewhat fallen out of popular consciousness.
.......Published in the 1950s and primarily written during the World War, in between Hitler's bombing runs on England and what must have been Tolkien's awesome linguistics classes at Oxford, the novel is the story of the turning of an age; it is the beginning of the current "age of man," which began when the Third Age ended many thousands of years ago.
.......The Lord of the Rings is the story of an impossible quest taken on by an unlikely and ill-prepared little Hobbit named Frodo Baggins. It involves a journey into darkness, or rather many such journeys. Frodo is not alone in his quest; he has friends and allies, all of whom must go beneath the surface of life, and struggle with dark and evil forces to gain their freedom. In doing so, they must grow, and mature, and re-emerge to join together and face the possibility that it was all for nothing. In this process, Frodo and his companions gain an understanding of history, and an understanding of the nature of how unpredictable events can be as they unfold. But mainly, what everyone learns is how important it is to remain committed to one's mission, and to cooperate in any way possible. Especially when it looks bleak -- but even when things are looking up.
.......That, to me, would represent the turning of an age. Maybe I'm an idealist, but I want to meet people everywhere I go who are outraged by the death penalty and by the bombing of foreign countries. I want to meet people in ordinary places (not at conferences and workshops) who are committed to healing their lives, and using their newfound strength to create community. I want to meet people who are learning to not use sex and money like guns and lawyers.
.......Is there any evidence that this is happening now?
.......Some of our fellows are learning to go beneath the surface of life's events, and the surface of their personal problems, but I would daresay not enough of them. Hell, it's scary, and it takes time, and it takes, hmm, doing something besides watching television. Mostly, we are, as a culture, distracted by pure trivia and superficiality, so much so that we scarcely can tell when we're being blatantly deceived. We are told, mainly by an endless stream of advertising, that everything is great; spend money. And when we do spend money, it's rarely in things that are really necessary, or helpful, or involved in making the world, or our homes healthier, or on developing the talents and personal gifts that I think really make us human.
.......As for cooperation, perhaps we have a clue, but little else. Some people, it is true, are very kind and generous. What they do often has beautiful results. Others would help a person for a moment but not longer. Most people live and work exclusively for themselves, and inadvertently serve something much larger and more sinister. I talked to two people who told me this week that they are going to pile up a lot of cash and retire young. Then, in a few years, they will do what they want; they will do what they think is really right. That's the spirit! I wanted to ask, excuse me, who are you, God?
.......I talk to many people who wish they could manifest their talents. Few are willing to take the risk. And while on one level, growing and developing as a massage therapist or songwriter is about "worldly success," on another it is about sharing. When people put off "success" for the future, it means that vast human resources, healing talents that would abate suffering, gifts for performing that would make our hearts lighter, ideas for art and literature that would help shape a healthy world view, are going to waste. We do waste a lot in this country, don't' we. Most folks are more concerned about getting a 500 megahertz computer than they are about what they write on or do with their 200 megahertz computer.
.......People often say they can't use their gifts because they're not getting paid. I can't accept this reasoning. Most of us need far less than we currently have. And we have been trained to think that in order for something to be of value, that something must have a price. Of all the human qualities that I have seen so rapidly deteriorate in my short time on the planet, the volunteer spirit has suffered the worst. But this, too, is just one layer of the onion. To share our talents means we would be inviting change into our lives. We might find ourselves -- wow! -- compelled by somethings besides money. We would also have to face all the insecurities that have been holding us back along the way. Seems complicated, I know. But the mind, eating itself, is more complicated.
.......So, when we talk about the Turn of the Millennium and Hope for the Future, to what are we paying tribute? The same thing that has hurled humanity forward on the road to nowhere through the whole industrial and technological revolution? I would say so. Therefore...
.......What do you want to do that you're not doing? What is the impossible quest that you know you must begin? What, exactly, are you waiting for?

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Sign-by-Sign for Friday, Nov. 12, 1999

ARIES (March 21-April 19)
Life may possess a surreal quality these days, as though everything is glowing in strange light and growing into unworldly proportions. You may have an exaggerated sense of priorities, and feel like you're on some kind of mission from the universe. With it all, I see the possibility that you feel unusually mentally balanced, emotionally stable, protected by love and, weirdest of all, like you're getting accurate signals in the midst of this cosmic enhancement. Personally, I don't doubt it. But before you hurl yourself headlong into any projects, I'm here to remind you that there are more clever ways to achieve your goals than you're currently aware of, and that there's no need to argue with anyone. Do your thing, a little at a time, and the world will be glad to cooperate.

TAURUS (April 20-May 20)
You may be finding it difficult to discern whether you're getting a straight story from people around you. I suspect you may also be wondering where all the sex went, which is a bold thing to put into any Taurus horoscope, despite the fact that you deserve to feel like the picture of desirability these days. Finally, I have this strange sense you're becoming a closet religious fanatic, though your particular denomination is clearly of your own make and design, and would hardly be fit for broadcast on the Christian Network. What does it all mean? Or, put another way, what do honesty, sex and religion have in common? Think it over, my dear Bullwinkle. Rest assured, I'll be doing the same.

GEMINI (May 21-June 20)
Now's the time to press the big Reset button in the sky. There is no point pursuing the people or things that you found interesting yesterday, or pretending the priorities that have had your attention since midsummer matter any more than they really do, especially with such unspeakably delightful weirdness coursing through the nerve synapses in your brain. Part of your uneasiness may indeed involve the unspeakability of this all, but if you let go into the primordial soup of your consciousness, and let society set you no limits on what is appropriate, you will be delivered a couple of exquisite visions of what may emerge. Then, if you can find the words to describe them, I suggest you ask for what you want, for you just may have it handed to you.

CANCER (June 21-July 22)
This is a brilliant moment to remember what I will call the ever-elusive Art Factor. Art is a kind of ultimate dare in this world, because it involves the risk of creation. And, for many people, art -- be it music, dance, writing, photography, or the spoken word -- means facing the void of silence and the emptiness of the blank page or canvas. If you accept the scantiest notion that we humans were created in the image of Goddess/God, and that this entity is merely a loving creative force, then to be in our Divinity, we need to be creating. In creating, we create and recreate ourselves. I would propose that the more daring along these lines you become, the safer you will feel here.

LEO (July 23-Aug. 22)
Trying to understand or comprehend yourself now could be a bit perilous, because your understanding will have a tendency to change hour by hour as the tides and currents of your emotions swirl around the stem of your mind. To stay in the flow of so much change, you will need to rely upon the most dependable Leo trait there could ever be: the eternal child, that indomitable immaturity which will give you permission to just be in all these strange spaces without trying to sort it out or analyze the details. Right now, you need merely to experience, and to experience yourself, with total honesty, in every space you enter. There is no up, down; right and wrong are, for you, currently matters of opinion.

VIRGO (Aug. 23-Sep. 22)
Current aspects may be turning you inside out and spinning anti-clockwise, and if I had to guess, it feels great. Usually. What could, any other week or month, be enough to completely disorient most anyone is likely to be coming across in your experience as a mysterious adventure on the way to yet greater challenges and triumphs. Your strength is in your ability to feel. No matter what people say or what they think, you are safely grounded in the pool of your emotions, and this quality, so rare among modern men and women, will not fail you. Should doubt arise, even for a moment, sit quietly, relax, drop into yourself -- and smile.

LIBRA (Sep. 23-Oct. 22)
What did it all mean, anyway? What will come of these recent weeks of mystery and void, your unnumbered days of invisible restriction, concealed truths and foggy visions of yourself? Now, I think, you will finally have a much better sense of what you have just been through, and not just as a matter of retrospect; your moment to act on a few vital pieces of information gathered during the recent journey of inner adjustment is approaching rapidly. You have the power to make real decisions that are based on self-awareness and true confidence. Having seen who you are not, you can finally know for sure who you are.

SCORPIO (Oct. 23-Nov. 22)
Fear is a menacing presence in this world, and much of what we do is motivated by it. Fear of loss, of being alone, of sickness, of surrender, of not fitting in, of not existing, and many others -- all being forms of the same thing -- are contrived by the mind, and reinforced by the media, and serve as our primary guiding "principles" throughout much of our time of existence. The path of human evolution, I believe, has come to the point where we must be connected to different motives, and we must do so by choice. For you, fear has certainly outdone its use, as have all the thoughts and ideas it so generously sponsors. You will have rare and brilliant opportunities to trade it in for something much better this week, and this whole year of your life.

SAGITTARIUS (Nov. 23-Dec. 21)
You are beginning to get a few glimpses of what is to come in the months and years ahead. "Telling the future" is not the greatest idea, nor is it the greatest use of astrology, since we really create the future as we go. But what you're getting are glimpses of aspects of a life unfolding that you have worked hard to design and develop, and the results of which are now drawing near a point of inevitability. Something is coming to fruition. Yet you are not quite there. Let your mind's visions serve as a motivating factor, and set the course of your life on the task of clearing any blocks that may still be in the way.

CAPRICORN (Dec. 22-Jan. 19)
What now occurs may feel like it's being forced or pressured upon you, unless you have the wisdom to know that the structures of your mind and of your heart have become too small to contain the new life that is struggling to be born. If all that limits human progress is thought, then we need to ask ourselves why, again and again, we are a species rendered incapable of changing its mind or taking a new direction when the old has outdone its use. Yet it is easier to evolve a person than a species. It is far easier to evolve yourself than someone else. Let the ground shake and the wind blow. Let the lightning strike. Welcome progress.

AQUARIUS (Jan. 19-Feb. 18)
You may not be receiving the recognition for your achievements that you deserve -- not yet, anyway. Presently, certain individuals are having too much difficulty getting their minds out of reverse gear to be able to appreciate the ideas you are presenting, or to see how much you've accomplished. Or, to put it bluntly, they may not be desperate enough yet to recognize the potential that your mere presence offers, and the solutions that your sideways mental process makes all but inevitable. Wait -- who is having difficulty accepting all of this? Is it really somebody else? Perhaps, but please check in with yourself first.

PISCES (Feb. 19-Mar. 20)
If only you could see how many factors are working for you, and how much of what has bogged you down over the years is steadily working itself out. Recent turns of events only provide a scant clue of what is possible. But remember that opportunity often calls for change, so reaping the benefits of all you've done may depend on whether you can keep your projects and your relationships sufficiently simple, so that you can respond when a new approach is required. You'll need to be detached enough from your current ideas to do what many people find quite difficult -- let go when something far better manifests before you.

For the Faithful
When new planets are discovered, it can be generations before astrologers have a basic sketch of the planet's meaning, much less a detailed map. Chiron, since its discovery in 1977, has been associated by many astrologers with Virgo, and this has been truly important because we are now looking for, and seeing, the real strengths of what was, until recently, considered a most unimportant sign of the zodiac. How many of us would have our present quality of life without the benefits of the holistic movement? How many of us would know God, but for the presence of Goddess? For the first time in those 22 years, we have an opportunity to see how Chiron and his students (everyone from chiropractors to herbalists) respond now that he's in Sagittarius for the first time since his discovery. Events of the next six or eight weeks will reveal much about his true nature, and I doubt we'll be disappointed.++

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