Vagabond Moon in Taurus

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Scavengers are very smart birds, the vagabond says to himself, noticing an anomalous crow on the beach. A different kind of smart from migratory birds. He remembers a science bulletin years ago which described how some scavenger species was herding migrating birds to their death among North American skyscrapers. How would you know that, he muses, remembering the spectacle of seagulls in the updraft of the incandescent spire of the Melbourne Arts Centre wheeling in turn to swoop on insects with the studied delight of dancers. Nobody else had believed that. And the London crow, or raven or whatever, which dropped nuts onto a pedestrian crossing for the traffic to crush, and then hopped out to retrieve them when the light turned red. And the Perth restaurant which put its sumptuous garbage bins in a peculiar place only he knew, from tracking compactor trucks.

Just one thing, he rehearses, sloshing in a sudden flat phosphorescent sigh. It may be my only opportunity to say, that ‘being there’ means only to be attentive; ‘being there for someone’ does not mean to feel compassion, or help someone to deal with their problems, but to attend to someone, to enjoy someone. That alone is ‘presence’ and ‘loving-kindness’. I know I should keep my trap shut, he mutters, but it feels like something which has never been said, the ancestor of common-sense, the moist soil of a Garden of Eden … and another thing …

Vagabond Moon Eighty Mile Beach Dec03

We’re all vagabonds, in our pursuit of a journey of indeterminate duration and destination. This is especially so for those knights errant who pursue love, or good, or truth. The destination is never reached. Evasion of someone else’s idea of these gives us direction, but brings us no closer to ours. And what happens when there is nobody left to evade? One by one our accusers face the gallows.

What is a vagabond doing on Eighty Mile Beach near midnight? Easy to imagine how he got there: dysfunction, rejection, confusion, rectitude, dissociation, addiction. But where on Earth is he heading? Towards Broome it appears, where–unless I’m mistaken–he started school in 1954. But he’s gazing lugubriously at the Moon, which is headed over the Indian Ocean, the other way. Familiar with the night sky from decades of sleeping out and a thousand municipal libraries, he may be walking towards a particular star, which might explain his continual veering towards the ocean, or is he drunk? We’ll never know; neither will the crow.

Perhaps he is headed beyond Broome, to the person gazing at the Moon in his direction right now, thinking of him. Thinking what, I wonder, and is she the person he thinks she is? Dulcinea or Aldonza? An acquaintance’s deserted wife, a schooldays friend, distant family? Haughty teenager promised to the elder he met in gaol who died there of an overdose on her Facebook? His own clever daughter perhaps, willing his connection to mean something? How does he want to be remembered? she might wonder, and well might she, with the most inane question in all of Errantry!

He battled with the Dumbledors,
the Hummerhorns, and Honeybees,
and won the Golden Honeycomb,
and running home on sunny seas,
in ship of leaves and gossamer,
with blossom for a canopy,
he sat and sang, and furbished up,
and burnished up his panoply. (Tolkien)

Vagabond Moon Halls Creek Dec03

Vagabond at Saiph Gate Halls Creek Dec05

I am haunted by a story written by my father about the Eighty Mile Beach, or rather a man stranded in its sandhills in the pitch dark. My memory has attributed to it the most evocative description I have ever read of the three- or four-dimensional experience of the galaxy in a dark sky, where you can see the vast distances of the solar system with the naked eye, and looking up feels like falling. This was my projection, dispelled by recent rereading: Dad’s character couldn’t see even his body, so lay down and slept until light, as though the stars weren’t there. But my Dad loved the Kimberleys, worked there during my early schooling–a daguerreotype experience of post-colonialism before its infiltration by the concept of ‘self as other’–and as he was dying completed the self-publication of a novel about “black and white love in the Kimberleys”, The Binding Chain. I am still wandering on his beach.

And so is the vagabond I guess, while his eponymous namesake heads out to sea, but I seem to have lost him, and can only see where moonlight slicks upon the heavy fluttering of a large black bird on a mound a long way up the beach.

The Moon, together with the voices of our ancestors in the self we call the world, is doubtless the harbinger of the god who dies and is reborn. Certainly the Vagabond will return tomorrow night and, possibly beyond the lifespan of humanity, repeat the sequence every year: recite a pagan god’s name backwards, S-E-R-A-T-N-A, outsmart seven sisters, quit the manger-cave of the Bull and Aldebaran (the archangel Michael), bathe in the sacred hormones of Saiph, cross the Lethe, sashay in a tutu onto a midsummer night’s dream, wake up in the mind, invent an astrology. It does seem strange that some people can’t love him until they turn him into a woman, but there you are.

Vagabond Forgetting North 80 Mile Beach Dec05

Grandchildren, if you come to vacation at the Eighty Mile Beach Luxury Eco Resort, taking advantage of the pre-Christmas off-season rates, make the most of the floodlit sky of the social beach-volleyball, for you’ll soon be migrated to an eighty-storey condominium in Hobart. Broome and Halls Creek will be ghost-towns, and the saga of Eighty Mile Beach will be the improbable tale of a couple of old men, of a woman in the Moon never there, and a soliloquy interrupted, always wrong, long-elided.

Funny how the Full Moon transits in the middle of the night, huh? Funny that the middle of the night is rarely midnight. Funny how the Bull looks like a real bull, and Michael his eye. Funny that Papa talked about such things as though he had actually seen them. Funny about the Seven Sisters and how they had to be tricked into sharing …

Eternity and Permanence

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There is no doubt in my mind that one of the great contributions to philosophy in the twentieth century was I and Thou, by Martin Buber. There is no ‘I’ existing in and by itself, Buber says, only an ‘I’ which stands in relation in either of two pairings: I-Thou and I-It (or I-He/She). The Vertex reminds me that my love-image, my attachment style and the success of my intimate relationships all hinge on my capacity to experience my self in relation, to recognize what I am projecting, and also to enjoy myself as a beloved.

Some totalitarian tweeted the other day his faith that same-sex marriage would be embraced by Australian society, and this would be a repudiation of the ‘concept of the other’. One of us is out of step, and it could be me. This is an ‘I-It’ attitude. Australia has embraced same-sex marriage, and this might be interpreted as the consolidation of an Australian identity, a swelling of the ranks of a majority who see eye-to-eye. It might also be interpreted as a recognition and celebration of difference, that we love, and share our ‘country’, our personal space, with the Other, as the ‘I’ in ‘I-Thou’. I for one realize that inclusion does not confer identity when it is an act of love, and exclusion and inequality do not imply enmity and ought not be used as weapons by totalitarians to inflame it.

Astrology does not have clean hands when it comes to the totalitarian claims of identity politics. Object-permanence may be an essential intuition in early childhood development and an important element in a sense of self, but experience should lead us to the understanding that only the past and other objects can carry our desire for fixed meanings. No person or thing can properly be understood as enduring in time or occupying unambiguous space. I cannot hate you for not understanding me, or sharing my culture and its beliefs. How could I, when I am not the same person two days in a row?

I have not worked on the Vertex to enshrine it in the pantheon of formative influences, but to connect my hormones to my concepts, to empty both of fixed definition, and to broaden the internal debate about what personality entails by enhancing my focus on what I and the Other may be projecting. I must admit, I am drawn to the ambiguity of its offence, and its compartmental categories of latitude are irresistibly mischievous.

Electric Houses

The Anti-Vertex is the elephant in the room.

The Ecliptic is fixed on the equatorial grid, which makes it easy to predict and time its movement. The tropical location generating the chart above sees the Zodiac passing directly overhead and high and low in both hemispheres, and I am definitely envious of the spectacle. However, it is totally unempirical speculation on my part to relate the symbols of our deepest affections to the altitude of the Ecliptic. The worship, not to say the fetishization, of eternity and permanence could not be imagined as a localized phenomenon, could it? Would not such a suggestion be an invitation to outmoded concepts like the ‘noble savage’ and ‘the Other’?

Eternity South Texas 2017

This little corner of the USA could not possibly offer emotional or daemonic experience unavailable in the rest of the country! I am really more interested in the movement of that red line than in real estate values, but what if resistance to culturalist pieties found itself drawn to enclaves further and further from the pernicious influence of a Vertex of conformity, even as the pietist preachers of victimhood were succumbing to the transference of exotic love-objects from sub-tropical climes?

Marcoola Beach

How would you react if around 2020 you started to become aware of strange new yearnings unsatisfied by good old-fashioned marriage, self-improvement and illicit sex? Instead of idealizing youth, you began to hanker after a winged angel on your marble sarcophagus? Or instead of people being turned away by your cynical intellectualized dismissal of spiritual life, they began in droves to revere you as a messenger from another dimension, taking holy orders and even their own lives to be with you in eternity?

End of Eternity 2017

Computing the exact latitude of date of the Vertex in the realm of Eternity demands seven decimal places, or 11 millimetres at the red line, to minimize its duration to less than 2 seconds, so if you’re right on it, stay put. Its rate of migration is 16,000 millimetres p.a. and its disconcerting wingbeats will pass over and be gone in 4 hours. Besides, the maximum sub-conscious reach of the Vertex for antipodean day-dreamers is the Gemini Winter Solstice (tropical Cancer), where it coincides with our Lethe Crossing and ‘Forgetting’ is the universe’s middle name. In the North, Eternity coincides with the Sagittarius (Capricorn) Solstice at the woeful heart of our galaxy, and you must continue to drown deprivation as is your winter wont.

The chart above locates the Vertex above Marcoola Beach, but in the very same moment (03:35 Eastern European Time) it is in the Fourth House above the Mortuary Temple of Ramesses III in Luxor, which is still forgetting at the Lethe an entry to the underworld 3,172 years later.

Permanence Luxor 2017

He was assassinated by a wife.

End of Permanence 2017

Roughly 4 hours later over Marcoola–woeful Luxor Eternity was roughly 8 hours ago: Eternity comes first–Permanence is a little more worrisome than Eternity, because of its tantalizing visibility, that is, it lurks in the House of Reputation, where consciousness is ever doing mortal combat with wokeness, and the next-door House of Attachment sublimates fear. Can you believe that enlightenment has been struggling with inherent properties for thousands of years, yet books purporting to contain the Word of God still top the bestseller list? Be mindful of the possibility that while you were deconstructing everything, your children were finding parasitism in the entrails of relativity and deprivation a most undesirable lifestyle. And note that in the Southern Hemisphere it is Cassiopeia, not Crux, in the First House. Don’t be surprised if your children convert to Islam because you’re just not permanent enough.

 

New Moon in Libra: Rectitude

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I was wrong. I hurt you, and I’m sorry. I am sorry that the things I have always most wanted to say are offensive. Sorry that my actions, so full of misunderstanding, are never innocent. The world is full of suffering; the road to hell is paved with good intentions. My ignorant intention has merely been to live, to course with desire, to experiment, to explore. Life is so short. The world was so big, so full of difference and mystery, and is now so full of hurt.

We can’t forgive each other, because you’ve excused yourself. You’re aggrieved. Why is that? Is it because you see every action as a reaction? Your ego is threatened by blame? You never studied history? I deserved it? You deserved better? Do you deserve better than your own children? No doubt you don’t let yourself think that, but do they deserve a better mother? Is that the attitude you want to teach them? I think not, but sometimes your attitude seems like the unspoken voice of an unconscious god–“bad poetry disguised as science” (Jaynes)–with the trajectory of a dodgem car.

The essence of life is not design or narrative, unconscious or conscious, but error. If an opinion fits ‘the facts’ better, it is less wrong, not more right. We have to live among people who are not listening carefully enough, and therefore make unreasonable demands of our egoistic ignorance. Four solutions to this discomfort have been embraced historically, and they are all religious. The first was identification with primal forces in conflict: asserting our chosenness. The second was the skill of tuning out: letting go, learning silence. The third was the practice of forgiveness, by force if necessary: silencing resentment. And the last was agnostic obedience, admitting that it’s safer to go with the experts: approaching the font. None has eliminated error and its discomfort, and all are alive and well today.

When we don’t know what we don’t know, it’s very tempting to clamber onto the desert island of opinion and cling to it circled by the sharks of difference. It should come as no surprise that only the deluded want to join us.

Libra New Cocos Island Nov18

Being wrong is in the eyes of the beholder, for whom being right looks like denial. There is a long-established place where rectitude may be permanently undisturbed, where a Big Bloke who knows everything rules uncontested, even supplying an undiminishing number of virgin-dolls to males who gave their lives for the ignorant opinions of slaves to a man from a cave and never questioned the economics of eternally intact flesh-and-blood hymens.

Libra New Hastings Nov18

Hastings is a relatively new cemetery which just happens to lie at the appropriate longitude to illustrate the incongruity of conjunctions in ecliptic longitude of bodies which belong in different frames of reference. Its inhabitants began dying in 1856, putting them in the generation which not only abolished slavery, but also sent about 164,000 convicts to the British colonies of Australia, and encouraged them to make comfortable their exile by assuming ownership of Aboriginal song and country. Like the bones history has scattered all over the Earth, they don’t need to make sense, as we do.

The most recent immigrants to our cemeteries and crematoria are of my generation, a coalition of supremacists, stoics, martyrs and submissives which thought to dismantle the communist experiment, give us equal rights for women and people of all ethnicities, and establish a global economy. How are they working out for you? God knows why we’re even talking about rectitude. Nobody’s right, right? But how does that go down with your kids? I guess we’ll find out soon enough, unless denial is so ingrained that we project our guilt onto their cluelessness as what we didn’t deserve.

Vagabond First Crescent St Kilda Nov20

Hunt around on that desert island surrounded by danger and evil. Somewhere you’ll find a rock, and beneath it a cave. If you go down into it you’ll find yourself in an underground fissure that goes for kilometres. It links to the Hormones Aquifer which flows not only through my heart and beneath the shark-infested sea but under every waterhole, field, workplace and home on the continent. If you crawl and swim far enough and find a way out through the twisted roots of passion, obsession and betrayal, like countless previous shamans and prophets, you will be saved. Emerging from another cave, you will have qualified to announce the prohibitions necessary to keep hormones where they belong. You will be feted as a supernatural being. AI policepersons will be entrusted to exert total control, because being programmed with your rules, they will be immune to human frailty.

One winter night, when Libra is at transit, look south at the spearing of Lupus, imagining it as I do a sheep. You might then be able to agree that the Libran scales of injustice, or trooper’s boot, epitomize the tranquility and insecurity of law in this wide brown land.

…Up rode the squatter, mounted on his thoroughbred.
Down came the troopers, one, two, three.
“Whose is that jumbuck you’ve got in your tucker bag?
You’ll come a-waltzing Matilda, with me.”
…Up jumped the swagman and sprang into the billabong
“You’ll never catch me alive,” said he,
And his ghost may be heard, as you pass by that billabong:

“You’ll come a-waltzing Matilda, with me.”… (Paterson/Macpherson)

Vagabond Signs 2017

Core of my heart, my country! (Mackellar)

Yes! It’s my country too!

I imagine your authority as the first, and perhaps last, voice of a new λóγος, of a world in which oxytocin comes in a bottle, where ‘self-help’ is a tautology and the ‘self’ in ‘self-knowledge’ is on the syllabus, where questions of eternity are settled by the ‘moment’, metaconsciousness has vanished into the graveyard, and the entire human race is corralled in latitudes greater than 40°, where one’s daemon is guaranteed to match what’s available in the marriage market, never lurking more than 30° from the horizon. Confirmation bias is a commodity, and your solipsistic submission is already before the Matrix Determination Committee. The future past is coming, because the truth is what we deserve.

Peasant Moon in Aries

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“Soon the hay-fields will ripen, soon the berry will show
Then they’ll fade into Autumn, to lie under the snow
Some years among many leave much more to remember
No need to explain how I feel about her. (Siebel, 1970.)

You could say that every Full Moon tests the understanding between lovers, but none presents greater danger than this one. “Is a dream a lie if it don’t come true, or is it something worse?” (Springsteen, 1980.) “Man from Mars, this time you went too far.” (Mitchell, 1989.) My heart may harbour a different dream, but it hurts just the same as yours. The man in the Moon exults in the light of the goddess Sun, but we all too often define worship as needy, and are just as quick to label vain assertions of independence as egoistic. We cherish the freedom of Summer in Winter, and the intimacy of Winter in Summer, but Spring and Autumn are most uncomfortable bedfellows, when the one is full of hope and the other is full of resentment. But so much in love depends on attachment style. The Peasant transits simultaneously over Detroit and Columbus (Ohio), and on down through Georgia and Florida, Western Cuba, the Gulf of Mexico and Costa Rica, and as latitude decreases, the meaning of love becomes more primal, totemic and transcendent. Do you have enough yeast in you to trace the astrological g-spot?

Peasant Miserere Curre Nov03

The Scales upside-down are a policeman’s boot, which means racial discrimination and the imposition of foreign law, but Aries is a ram, both ways, all instinct. If you have a sensitivity to cultural appropriation, you ask walking directions from Google Maps for Bamaga to Melbourne, and by all means argue your arcane knowledge of water-holes and star maps for one day’s walk out of sixty. That’s Aries. Here it comes: Permanence.

Peasant Vertex Retro Curre Nov03

The Peasant is a convergence of two archetypes, one being coarse and ignorant, and the other confined to tradition and the rhythms of Nature. He is contemptuous of urban sophistication and political correctness, because every day he must, on behalf of city-slickers, do things they are too squeamish for, such as saw off the horn growing into an eye, shoot an endangered bird raiding the fruit, cut down a native tree or separate the newly-born from their mothers for butchering. He is the very opposite of late-Spring tranquility, and yet in his intransigence he is tranquil in his way. He will give you a mouthful if you do not qualify as his judge, but to let him get on with what he has to do you must be content with his reversal of your superiority. The Peasant is the quintessential Shakespearean Fool.

Peasant Moon Curre Nov03

But what stirs in his heart? What hides behind his stubbornness, his brusqueness and his sullen strength, to explain his relentless commitment and unwavering care? Fly over farmland and weep for the felled forest of the world, but marvel at the increment of life upon life of back-breaking hard work with axe and saw. How many generations, how many acres per man? The Vertex and its projector are but geometric labels in search of a symbology, but peasants do have beloveds, I’m sure, even if they don’t dream of them like lovelorn adolescents. Every peasant is a philosopher on the porch before bed, with only one rudder in the sea of stars and time straight up, his deep. How did they love their wives? How did their children love them? And how are they remembered? For atrocities against indigenous people who were just like them? In terms of the imagination, not a lot has changed.

Peasant Vertex Direct Curre Nov04

Permanence can easily be envisaged through the eyes of a peasant on a porch, raising his countenance from idealization at the horizon, comfortable completion halfway up, and then its logical implication as high as it is possible to look without straining something. But the peasant knows that the stars move the other way across the west, and it is a little more difficult to understand what’s happening when the cynic craning his neck eastward has to turn around.

The experts say that tropical weather patterns are expanding, but the lines of tropical latitude (Cancer and Capricorn) are moving towards the Equator, at the rate of about 1.5 kilometres per century. Currently, the Vertex can appear in Meridian Houses V and VIII at north and south latitudes less than 40.92°, IV and IX less than latitude 26.59°, and crosses the Meridian, twice, in the tropics, when the Ecliptic is overhead, equal and opposite distances from the Equinoxes. At the Equator, it is always at the (tropical) Aries or Libra Points–the Equinoxes–(whichever is in the west). It is permanent.

Electric Houses

The enslavement of a user by a plaything is actually quite common, and really the transit of the zodiac at the zenith is as banal if you don’t apply your attention to it. Is not accepting a truth you don’t understand mere clinging to a world made by others? Is not the task of fixing a problem you see in someone else not a column in an edifice meant to be older than time? You’ve probably heard, ‘I’ll never forget you,’ a few times, and even, ‘It was written in the stars.’ What is heaven without permanence, asks the cynic trying to analyse eternity. Idolatry is boredom’s safety net, dreaming of old flames, or the first rung on the ladder of affect.

Peasant Moon Stradford-on-Avon Nov04

“Come away, come away, death,
And in sad cypress let me be laid;
Fie away, fie away, breath;
I am slain by a fair cruel maid.
My shroud of white, stuck all with yew,
O prepare it!
My part of death, no one so true
O did share it.
Not a flower, not a flower sweet,
On my black coffin let there be strown;
Not a friend, not a friend greet
My poor corpse, where my bones shall be thrown:
A thousand, thousand sighs to save,
Lay me, O where
Sad true lover never find my grave,
O to weep there!”

FesteTwelfth Night.

[My vain project is not only to enhance tropical astrology with a Southern Hemisphere perspective and an equatorial connection to the still-visible stars which might help heal its visible displacement, but to present a non-linear, cyclical background to human affairs before which people might discover more of the preconception of their moment, and as whom they are being created in it. I am not an activist telling you who you are, a scientist telling you what you’re made of or a medicine-man telling you who you were meant to be. Call me deluded, call me demented, but if I say something which helps you resist the magical realism of DSM diagnosis, the abyss of stardust cosmology, and the taboo against tampering with preordained creation with bottom-up interpretations of time and place, then I am justified in acting the fool. Call me a peasant then, my fellow-peasants!]

New Moon in Virgo: Friendship

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We have reached the last days of Spring. Tomorrow, the Sun will enter Libra in the Breamlea Zodiac, the Once A Jolly Swagman Sign which in its quintessential Australian way portends a Northern copper’s boot for the Centaur’s indiscretion of killing a Lupine sheep. Springtime has calmed down, accepted the limits of possibility in the habits and rules of co-existence, internalized the consequences of experiment and choice in a crowded world, and verges on Summer (on November 8 with the nightfall transit of Fomalhaut, the star of affirmation).

Virgo New RA Paysandu Oct19

Shall we be friends, me and you, South and North, East and West? Can ‘country‘ integrate conscious and unconscious, the shared meanings of language and the personal meaning of poetry and music yet unsung? How rich must language be to nourish us with reverence for ancestors whose customs have departed with them, made invisible to us by ours? What can the loneliness and nostalgia for village of our foreign neighbour teach us about ours, forgotten in a similar experience buried in different words? We all carry the burden of our parents, but must we paper over it, and can we not honour them with our innovation and compromise? We must revitalize the invisible, and populate ‘country’ with mystery, ignorance and imagination, lest indifference overwhelm curiosity, and the black and white facts that we pass down to our children and our children’s children be dead ones, no more than the bare bones of a meagre vocabulary.

Virgo New Equatorial Paysandu Oct19

Hard to imagine, but the diameter of this horizon is only fifty kilometres on the ground, yet above it is half the universe. By the attributes invested in them by me, I know that the stars beyond the circle of daylight, if you rewrap the two-dimensional projection, are being gazed at by some Other in the Shanghai night who knows them by different names and attributes, in another language as timeless as mine, which tens of millions who do not even remember the stars are there are losing.

Friendship is defined in many ways, notably by the contributors to the Urban Dictionary, but I think the best definition of ‘friend’ is someone who ‘improves’ you, makes you feel kind–all kinds of kind are of a kind, kind of–and only incidentally someone who is kind to you. Not even your lover is your friend unless he or she fills you with kindness. Kindness is not charity. Rather than expecting something from a benefactor which never comes in adequate measure, we wait expectantly on our friends, so that we can lavish our attention on them, and discover more of who we are under their attention. There, not in identity-with, nor in identity-from, our true nature creates itself.

“In every waking moment, your brain uses past experience, organized as concepts, to guide your actions and give your sensations meaning. When the concepts involved are emotion concepts, your brain constructs instances of emotion.” Lisa Feldman Barrett. It is the primordial Mystery: Connection is my innermost Being. Community is made out of friendship, friendship out of emotion and emotion out of language; language is made out of emotion, emotion out of friendship and friendship out of community. This is what I believe gives power to the notions of ‘significant Other’ and ‘love of one’s life’ constellated by the Vertex: the ‘Over There’ feels like it is the ‘In Here’. Can a reason be imagined why the ‘In Here’ would repudiate its ‘In Here-ness’ ‘Over There’, other than a fundamentally disconnected and erroneous understanding of language made identity-fetish?

I implore you to interrogate, not forget, the language of the past. Before you tear down the monuments to the depravity of your ancestors, try to find the old words which masked separation and deprivation in the culture in which your great-grandparents were raised, and which were filtered by the emotions of your grandparents and in turn your parents and you. Before you remove the ruthless conquest of your indigenous people from your sight, remember that they whose memory shames you are of your spirit, your love, your kindness, your disappointment and your bitterness. There are words for the courage and dogged determination to survive in the middle of nowhere, and they are just as endangered as the language embedded in indigenous country. Befriend them.

Virgo New Sao Paulo Oct 19

In this chart the official New Moon, when the two bodies have the same ecliptic longitude, is plainly exhibited at the moment the descending Sun is due west in São Paulo, because the Summer Solstice Point is crossing the Meridian, and São Paulo lies on the Tropic of Capricorn. The Sun’s path to the horizon is its line of declination on the equatorial grid presented, whose hour circles reveal that the Moon is already 1.5° past it. For reasons of symmetry with the stars and cardinal directions, I project the Breamlea Zodiac cusps by hour circles, and logically, the Moon is already in Libra, since the Sun is less than a degree from it. What beguiles me, however, is what is happening to the Vertex as the Ecliptic and Prime Vertical align. A midwife needs a ludicrously accurate time-piece in the tropics! In less than three minutes, the Vertex moves through five constellations. What tempestuous yearnings lurk in the tropical heart, if the Electric Axis really has any meaning. If dream lover and attachment style are just habits, they can be admired for their alacrity in the few seconds a day they enjoy for their reinforcement!

Peasant First Crescent Safar St Kilda Oct21

Religious scholars have been tabulating kindness for thousands of years, and making a decent living out of it, so it is no wonder that the primal, connective, responsive instinct of kindness has been institutionalized as charity, and that we have come to confuse friendship with ‘being there’ for someone. No matter, teaching your children to be righteous by obeying rules of justice and charity cultivates their attention, the conduit which affords intelligence of instinct, and instinct of intelligence. Attention alerts them to the quality of their friends as attentive friendship informs them of their own qualities. Bit by bit, their internal vocabulary expands to differentiate friend from fellow, benefactor from pauper, lover from frenemy, sharer from user.

Peasant Signs Parkville 2017

Your lights douse the night while you watch Survivor. How should I feel? Your exiled ancestors on the Friendship lie in enmity. How should I feel? You breathe in greed and your denial turns off my fan. How should I feel? Your mystery is love, and you diagnose it on the spectrum. How should I feel? My truest friend is the horizon circle I intersect with the horizontal one, and the blurry fringe of eyelashes which frame it and keep it clean, beat, beat, beating my era, keeping me present, grounding me in the sky. I call my imaginary friend, ‘Country Member’. A Tasmanian, he laughs. He knows I can, with occasional help. We grew up together. How do you feel?

Prodigal Moon in Pisces

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"Yeah the same thing's happened over again
Every time I meet a woman she tries to pin ya in
Found the only way to handle a woman
Is to keep your bag packed, keep movin'
Steppin' lightly
Eyes forward, proud, determined, masculine
Probably get horny
Can't live with 'em and you can't live without 'em
That's why I write so many of these weird songs I guess."
Jerry Jeff Walker, Ramblin' Scramblin', 1969.

The unifying epiphany of materialism is the discovery of causality and connectedness, but the Miserere commemorates a different frame of reference, not the space of objects but the time of subjects, not the primacy of identity-with but the miraculous anguish of identity-from. Have mercy, Eternity.

You couldn’t get a more potent representation of balance and normality than the chart of the Prodigal’s transit over Ghandi’s ashram as the ‘Miserere’ arches from east to west crowned by vain Cassiopeia. How appropriate seem both Pisces’ Southern Hemisphere sign of Libran refinement and compromise, and its Northern Hemisphere sign of Aries, of energy with some impatience! What a princess!

Prodigal Moon Wardha Oct06

But let’s lighten up. ‘Prodigal’ means ‘wasted’, in both meanings of the word. If only he would stop abusing substances and locating himself in the ephemeral, he could come home to love and community, couldn’t he? He could find real purpose. But look at it another way. As it is fast becoming conventional wisdom to say, the wastage of his being in mere existence may be put down to our conditioning of his experience of unlovability. Oxytocin addicts are not very good at convincing others that they are loved. While his normal parents sleep, a prodigal soul might be seduced far from their philosophy into the arms of awareness bordering on mental illness. What is there to wake up to, in this unlovable world?

Lord, have mercy on the population which can’t live with You, but can’t live without You. Who but the slightly insane can understand the dedication of a life on this earth to spiritual liberation? Who, blessed by the growing body of literature on the psychology of love, could be so engrossed in love’s endocrinology that a life embalmed in self-help books might seem like a path to spiritual liberation? What else but the travails of unlovability can explain the attempt by astrologers and mystics to tabulate the relationship between the prime vertical and the zodiac?

Prodigal Vertex VIII Wardha Oct05

“Let’s play a game,” he says, totally out of it. “Imagine that we are robots, programmed at the factory to optimize the resilience and adaptability of artificial intelligence by embodying just enough order in chaos: depending on the time of year and day, we yearn to love in one of just six different ways in sequence, each involving its own geomagnetic drive, duration and triggering device. You have to guess which drive we’re in, and I have to guess if I am the right trigger. Let’s pretend Love!” Despite his wastage, or because of it, his notch on your barrel entices, if only for the beguiling recklessness it would add on your CV.

Prodigal Anti-Vx III Wardha Oct06

“You will love me forever if I treat you like dirt? No, wait! You are anxious about death, and you will love me for thinking I will live forever?”

“Keep it up, funny man. The more you intellectualize, the more alert I become to feelings I didn’t know were there. I am germinating! Some inherited dream deep in my imagination has been given a name.”

Prodigal Vertex Fourth House Wardha Oct06

“What is it? ‘God’? I worship the goddess in you! You have the most intriguing hard and fast rules, and they’re all good! You know the best gifts to buy, and where from. You know what is appropriate behaviour, and what is not. You have beautiful paintings on the wall, fresh flowers in the vase, pithy quotations about positive attitude on the toilet wall! I dream about you! You have so many friends! I am so lucky!”

“I think it is ‘presence’. I convey my gratitude for what is to all around me, but especially to you, who get me so well.”

Prodigal Vertex Fifth House Wardha Oc06

“We will travel. I want to share the world with you, and share you with the world. I want you in my family, and to love all my friends. They will love you as I do. I am lonely when I am with my friends since we became a number.”

“My father says you should get a job, and I want you to give up your addictions. We will have a child.”

Prodigal Vertex Sixth House Wardha Oct06

“Whatever you say goes! I can do it. I’ve just made some silly mistakes in my life, but the self-help books you’ve lent me have awakened me to my self-defeat mechanisms. I am ready!”

“Yes, you could write your own book with your amazing mind. Stop reading, and write. I believe in your power to transform yourself, as I have, through counselling.”

Prodigal Vertex Seventh House Wardha Oct06

“I feel as though I have emerged from a dark cloud, since I learned how to be silent and listen. Your friends no longer tell you how arrogant and abrasive I am. I hope they don’t! Do they?”

“I don’t keep in touch so much.”

Prodigal Vertex Eighth House Wardha Oct06

“I have become a little concerned that people I know don’t understand you. One has said he thinks you are ‘arid’. ‘No!’ I said, but it does seem strange that others can’t see how beautiful, and intelligent, and witty, and supportive you are. You were quite a catch.”

“Perhaps you didn’t catch me, and you need to work harder, now that I am getting older, and finding that I interest a whole different class of people. Incidentally, I ran into my ex at that do you didn’t want to come to the other night.”

Birds in backyards, who have an innate attunement to the hours, the Earth and the stars we can only dream of, are attracted by mournful music, because it’s the easiest to sing. Humans are currently attracted to the idea that romantic love is a construction of the Middle Ages perfected by Hollywood as a capitalist tool. If you buy the idea that real love, that which connects everyone and everything, is universal compassion, and anything else is a hormonal delusion, you’re still just singing the easiest song.

New Moon in Virgo: Community

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In making up your mind on whether to vote for or against the legalization of same-sex marriage, you will discover, if you don’t already know it, that you are either a free-radical in your social organism, and your identity and values are self-defined, or else you are an integrated part of a whole, a conservative who finds purpose in protecting and perpetuating a system you may barely understand. As a radical, you may never cease to wage all-out war on the misguided values of others, or as a conservative, you may forever be perplexed as to whether opponents are ‘lights on the hill’ or enemies, sustenance or poison. Can you love a society which marginalizes minorities? Conversely, can you accept the definition of your loving as merely another category of existence debatable in a pluralist, relativist political economy?

Sun Enters Virgo Ibarra Sep20

This chart–the Sun enters Breamlea sidereal Virgo 24 minutes before New Moon and 2.6 degrees before the Equinox–was conceived to illustrate my conception of how the signs apply in the tropics, and how the skies of North and South can reveal each other, but it also depicts a fictional context for the consideration of the interaction of love and society, one of the two extreme configurations of the intersection of the Zodiac with the Prime Vertical not witnessed in temperate climes. Only above a line connecting Sunshine Coast Airport and Meekatharra does the Vertex appear in the Ninth Meridian House, the House of Aspiration and the madness of Deprivation. In the fictional world of astrology, what differentiates the experience of people above and below this line?

I want to make this absolutely clear: I am an astrologer; I make things up. I have conjectured a connection between the way the configurations of the Milky Way change as latitude decreases in Australia and the variation of Indigenous languages, but there is no reason whatsoever to believe that Jayne and Johndro’s Electric Axis operates differently as a ‘portal to transcendence’ on either side of a line.

We live in different States of a Commonwealth, here in Australia. In geopolitical terms, as distinct from historical time-lines of self-determination, does anything distinguish the Queensland residents of Point Danger from those in New South Wales? Of course not. There is absolutely no reason to believe that a Point Danger resident, obedient to Queensland law, educated in a Queensland school, in the care of the Queensland medical system, and the daily reader of a Queensland newspaper would in any way be distinguishable from a New South Wales resident across the street.

Virgo New Pt Danger Sep20

They live in the same ‘community’, after all. But what, it is time to ask ourselves, is a community? Broader than a nuclear family, certainly, yet more localized than a religious affiliation, moiety, or extended family, how does it differ from a society, club or association? Because we do mean something special by ‘community’, don’t we? An association holds together by common interests, a club by adherence to common rules, and a society by respect for a common set of values, but a community transcends different faiths and values, and allows conflicting interests and interpretations of the law.

Prodigal First Crescent St Kilda Sep21

Can Muslims and Jews count on each other in times of need? The altruism of Emergency Service officers helping flood and bushfire victims is beyond doubt, but is it sufficient proof of community? If you found out that the man who saved your life had sent his little girl overseas for a surgical procedure on her genitals, would that affect his membership of your community? Do you belong to a community in which decisions to vaccinate children and genitally mutilate sons go either way? How does cross-dressing in kindergarten go down in your neighbourhood? Do my arbitrary and heretical definitions and interpretations disqualify me from an astrology community, or is such an entity impossible?

Prodigal Woe Vertex Lismore Sep26

The Prodigal Moon is an exile from community, as we all are. However, he does belong in my cosmology to the association of minds who are troubled in the west, represented above by the oxytocin addicts of Lismore, as he crosses the Prime Vertical in precise horizontal conjunction with a semi-conscious lack of completion in mid-Acheron, the Hades River of Woe. Completion is the social end of the electric gate of transcendence which spans the Fifth and Eleventh Meridian Houses. At the other end is its affect, the disposition which both primes the sense of destiny at the Vertex and presents itself to the Other beyond control: what else but Fantasy! Community does not endorse idolatry, fantasy, delusion, convention, narcissism or cynicism, because the Other, whatever healing and restorative power fate links us to, has affect too. Yes, community knows mercy, and it knows doom. Its love is a pearl in the pigsty.

The Electric Axis is a revelation of ghosts in our closet, and of the interpretation by others of our disposition, on a sliding scale of identity with their ghosts. Its relevance to my consideration of the endorsement of same-sex marriage is my conviction that a sense of community is actually the ghost in the machine. What unites people in a community is their sense of it: it is a bottom-up entity. Love is a bottom-up entity, too. May lovers of any gender or ideology desiring to consecrate their relationship continue to be embraced in the bosom of an enhanced community oblivious to opinion and definition.

Noon Sun Conjunct Cruz Katherine Oct01

And so the month defined by the Moon proceeds into the season defined by Astronomy and the calendar month defined by Christianity. It is not midday but noon in the heart of the country when this snapshot by a prodigal tourist is taken. Have we missed our chance to form a community of Indigenous Australia and its invaders, or can recognition of the authenticity of a degree of Indigenous autonomy enable us all to transcend our society’s definition by the Constitution? We have yet to preserve heterosexuality, and where religious freedom fits with civil obedience may evolve mutual hostility that will go on forever! Will Cynicism usher us into Eternity?

 

 

Monk Moon in Aquarius

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The Monk arrives, as he always does, in the inverted sign of his departure.

Monk Transit Delicias Oct06

An equatorial grid reveals a hitherto unremarked affinity of the fabled Circlet of Pisces with the mythical vanity of Cassiopeia. Fortuitously lurking in the Mexican astrological house of the intellect, the two of them are conversely at home in the Indian Ocean aspirations of the antipodean American hungry ghost.

Monk Lower Transit Delicias Antipodes Sep06

On his way to give succour to the wretched pilgrims camped expectantly below the Circlet of Unfulfilled Love,  the Monk is waylaid by a throng of rancorous social scientists. He stands accused of not disclosing emotions which have the potential to perpetuate gender duality and white male supremacy. Additional charges, that he helped Captain Cook chart the Australian coast and is therefore implicated in the invasion which followed, and that he gave solace to unhappy priests tempted into the sexual abuse of children, have been dropped for want of credible eyewitnesses.

It cannot be denied that the Monk has triggered some pain, but if we can dispassionately judge perpetrator, why not victim? With all due respect, he defends himself, although I cannot deny being a witness to the whole of human history, I do not control it. I am not responsible for the emergent practice of connecting with the cosmos at sunset, or the associated encounter with the Other of people’s unconscious longing and exploitation. Do not delay me further, and what influence I may have, I will employ.

For generations, it has been the Circlet which has offered connection in the suffering embodied by human loving, and the Monk has been revered for the selfless love and courage of his service to humanity in renunciation of the physical comforts of biological union and material wealth. However, he is aware that some of his followers have begun to practise the contemplation towards the west of the setting Sun. As darkness falls on the last glow of the day, they quietly absorb the same feeling of primal union that dissolves the individuality of lovers and stimulates the dropping of bonded milk for the newborn.

The high priests, by computing the precise intersection of the prime meridian and the ecliptic, which half the time occurs below the horizon, have bolstered their claim to special powers of interpretation, but in doing so have introduced a potentially disturbing perspective, namely, that the rush of oxytocin may have unconscious elements which are not always benign.

“It’s sometimes known as the “cuddle hormone” or the “love hormone,” because it is released when people snuggle up or bond socially. Even playing with your dog can cause an oxytocin surge, according to a 2009 study published in the journal Hormones and Behavior. But these monikers may be misleading.

Oxytocin can also intensify memories of bonding gone bad, such as in cases where men have poor relationships with their mothers. It can also make people less accepting of people they see as outsiders. In other words, whether oxytocin makes you feel cuddly or suspicious of others depends on the environment.” Stephanie Pappas, Live Science.

Astrology is working in parallel with social science to quantify oxytocin’s effects. The Vertex faction of the Capricornia Chapter of the Australian Coastal Retirees Association is playing a prominent role. Its members are in silent uproar as the glorious rays of sunset give way to darkness. The Vertex at this latitude offers something for all who rummage in their hormones for the indrawn sigh of connection. Unfortunately, there is as yet no Anti-Vertex faction.

Monk Capricornia Vertex Sep06

As the Vertex disappears below the horizon in the astrological house of relationship, the Monk is approaching from behind, while the cosmos has clicked into perhaps its most significant configuration. The Milky Way arcs in a straight line from southwest to northeast centred directly overhead. The Monk, himself an habitual contributor to light pollution, is unaware of the profound implications of connection with fifty thousand years of indigenous culture dulled by the lights of Rockhampton above the oxytocin worshippers focused on gratitude for their superannuation and companions in retirement. However, he does have some thoughts on country.

Monk Summer Solstice Transit Sep06

The Monk taps on his champagne glass and clears his throat. Lifelong friends, he begins, I commend you for your refusal to succumb to suffering as the pilgrims waiting for me at the Circlet do, but please hear my testimony. I share your yearning for validation, but I have learned its pitfalls. As long as it comes from the Other, it can only reinforce the Self as Other too. What is it about you which gives you the power to connect with the Other? Only Thou can know. Love is not projected, nor can it be measured or deserved. Transcendence and joy can only be found right here, as the source of the real, not at the end of an investigation or journey. Let your meditation be the ground under your feet and the sky above you. Open your heart to all who share them with you, and let yourself fall into total disclosure, whether they do or not. To worship and be worshipped is a beautiful thing, but to be the place of worship is sublime.

Monk Anti-Vertex Alignment Rockhampton Sep06Observe the Vertex Calendar, true for leap years, and enjoy the rapture of prattling children, renewed friendship and new shoots in the vegetable garden, savour the mysteries of bewitchment and compulsion, but embody north, south and east too. The driver of midsummer is midwinter. The driver of permanence is idolatry. I will face my charges guilty of my innocence.

Vertex Calendar

[My disclosure: I am a Cassiopeia in the lower case: letter ‘w’. ‘You’ are not Other, but when absent, missed. Please do not colour me in. Abliq.

Everything’s been returned which was owed. Dylan.]

New Moon in Leo August 21-22: Disclosure

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No matter where you are on this earth, and no matter what system of belief you inhabit, the night sky is studded with the stars grouped by perspective into the western astronomical constellations between Virgo setting in the west, Scorpius at transit, north or south, and Aquarius rising in the east. The Sun is in Leo. That much we can infer, regardless of how far it is from the Pisces Equinox, or which season it is in by the Tropical almanac. Whether it is Virgo perspicacity or energy which stirs in your veins, the Lion will for an instant across the United States today demonstrate its presence, as the Moon for that instant discloses the relativity of the Sun.

Leo New Missouri Image Aug21

Disclosure is the process of finding yourself out, learning the rules, those that are imposed and those that you instinctively or reflexively assert, and the resolution of conflicting rules is your choice of who you want to be. When you accept that you cannot always get what you want, when you discover oppression is largely wanting what you can’t have, when the sky doesn’t fall in when a rationalizing of your priorities removes the urgency of much of what you thought you wanted, you enter a new phase of disclosure.

In this process you discover ambiguity and relativity, that there are reasons why people often do not understand you that go beyond you being right or wrong, and by engaging with intersecting lexicons and narratives you develop your own philosophy and a creative perspective on the arbitrariness of the system you inhabit. This development is the intention of deconstruction. Sadly, the outcome of the process you are led through in your education often falls short of the ideal. Relativity can erode the sense of being someone whom everything is relative to. That your language embodies power structures and implicates you in offences you deplore leads more easily to the learning of new languages than to humility and responsibility, when there is nobody speaking it.

The hardest thing to appreciate is what emptiness is full of. You can’t undo the twists and turns of your story by getting out of it, because that too is just another twist. You can’t absolve yourself from the harm you’ve done by attributing it to someone else’s influence or the ignorance of your victim. Karma is the implication of what you don’t do too. The language you no longer speak continues to resonate, and others continue to interpret the story you have vacated. In the end, the things you deconstruct remain things. Whatever an eclipse means to you, the birds will fly home at the end of a shortened day and relaunch their affairs at the end of a shortened night for a repeated shortened day.

Leo New Missouri Aug21

This is a depiction of disclosure. Its author has discovered the relationship of inferred Sun position, seasonal formative conditions and human personality, and already suspects his system to be the tip of an iceberg. That is to say, he has reached a realization of subterranean influences on behaviour which dissolve behaviour in an infinity of the unconscious, the mystery of which is reduced to absurdity by systems of conscious explanation. It is only a small step to reproduce the moment in another time and location.

Leo New Visakhpatnam South Aug22

There is a third phase in the process of disclosure. When you have accustomed yourself to ambiguity and relativity, and thereby learned to forgive the agency of others in the injuries you have sustained and which have so profoundly affected the course of your life, when you have forgiven yourself for the injuries you have inflicted on others, and finally forgiven yourself for bearing injury like everybody else, rather than seeking to remove it, you begin to forget. Now it is in your dreams that disclosure proceeds. People who were once central characters in your play reappear on stage in strange roles. Familiar events are recomposed, containing discriminations and formations which are recognizably yours, but quite inside out. It doesn’t matter.

Leo New Visakhpatnam North Aug22

South or North: each is the other buried. Now you really do have a story to get out of: one beyond history with unlimited permutations, without beginning, middle or end, without fixed plots or identities, without seasons or opposites and without author or audience. Disclosure is disclosing itself. You are in old country. Welcome to the empty mirror of the Bardo.