Tag Archives: Creativity

Rare Aspects

The Path, by Reginald W. Machell

“The Path” by Reginald W. Machell

 

There’s a rare and powerful aspect happening tonight that will impact the week ahead. The Sun, Venus and Pluto arrive at the same degree of 19 Capricorn. This could be a cathartic event for each of us, depending on where the conjunction falls in your natal chart and the aspects it makes with other planets.

The Sun is your soul’s signature and vision in this lifetime, and brings huge focus and importance to where it falls in your chart AND to where it transits. It’s the giant star that our solar system depends on – the greatest light of all. In conjunction with Venus, it stirs the passions of love and art. Although Venus isn’t completely “happy” in the sign of the goat, the Sun’s presence brings warmth, healing and abundance to relationships or careers that have become stale or stuck. Venus is love and money, and the Sun is fire and healing. ❤

But across the solar system, far out in the hinterlands, sits Pluto. Despite being millions of light years away, it lines up perfectly with the Sun and Venus creating a huge conjunction across our personal star path. Pluto is a dark planet (yes it’s a planet dammit), and symbolizes deep transformation, catharsis, toxic emotions, unhealthy patterns and buried treasure. Pluto (with Venus) brings up our deepest, hidden blocks so we can sacrifice them in the fire of the Sun. We dig through the disappointments of last year and clear them, so we can unearth the real gold buried deep within. What a wonderful to start the year and set the energy of 2018.

From Austin Coppock:

“The other significant configuration which occurs during this span of days is the conjunction of Mars and Jupiter in Scorpio. This is a fierce and triumphant conjunction, the proper mindset of conquerors and the seed of great victories. It brings optimism and relentlessness, and while it shines you will have the capacity to envision victories you are normally too modest to dream.

Take the regalia of the conqueror from Mars and Jupiter, and the clarified passion of the Venus-Sun conjunction, for they are exactly what you need to build the year before you. Do not rush to commit to half-ass, guilty resolutions. Clarify your passion and stoke your courage, for they are exactly what you will need to build the year you desire.
Give the skies time to offer you these boons. Spend the days of this decan receiving these empowerments and constructing your blueprint. Do not start building before the design is complete- give yourself at least until the New Moon later in the month to break ground. 2018 will not be kind to hastily laid plans. It will test even good ones, but has rewards of satisfaction and accomplishment waiting for those who can bring together passion, courage and patience.”

Happy New Year!

stargoddes1

Full Moon in Cancer: 6:24pm Pacific.

Uranus Direct in Aries: 6:13pm, January 2nd.

Happy New Year! You can stay home, recuperate, and watch movies today, but Uranus is stationing above us about to turn forward (Direct) in Aries. Expect revelations, sudden changes, insight and awakening.

The influence of the Full Moon and Uranus creates a turning point for many of us at the beginning of 2018. We will have more support for sticking to our resolutions.

 

Astro Report for mid October

angels

The Full Moon in Aries last Thursday is now behind us, and it was one of the more challenging moons we’ve faced in a long time. Uranus (sudden changes) on the Full Moon, squaring Mars (aggression) and Venus (relationships) created a tense and chaotic atmosphere in many areas of our lives. I’m sure many of us are feeling exhausted and bewildered from the sudden events. Last week illuminated our compatibilities and differences, as well as the road  to creating an authentic harmony.

This week starts with more tension with Mercury and the Sun squaring Pluto. Avoid conflicts and social squabbles and instead focus on regeneration and what’s most important. These are the best ways to use Pluto’s cathartic energy! This planet brings up toxic thoughts from under the surface that need to be purged and healed. You can help the process by focusing on your goals. Remain peaceful and avoid angry situations or people.

Jupiter moves from Libra to Scorpio on Tuesday. This planet expands all it touches, and the energy shifts from relationships and art to sex, power struggles and the unearthing of secrets. Much more on this later! Let changes unfold instead of forcing solutions.

As always,try to keep the focus on improving your own life conditions rather than imposing your will on others. Practicing gratitude, getting a good night’s sleep, having some good food or a chat with a trusted friend are the best things for us in October.

 

Astro Weather

Happy Labor Day everyone! Good news, we are starting September off right with two planets resuming forward motion 🙂

Mars and Mercury are doing an odd dance right now. Mercury (in Retrograde) is barreling towards Mars (Direct) in the last degrees of Leo. Remember the eclipse a couple weeks ago?

The American eclipse on August 21st occurred at 28 degrees Leo. Mars will be ON that degree tomorrow, Saturday, Sept. 2nd! This transit inspires us to put our eclipse insights into motion and TAKE ACTION! We also have a Mars/Uranus trine (positive aspect) tomorrow! Expect the unexpected… revelations abound and the desire to be free and independent will reach a fever pitch.

Next week, Mars and Mercury will “cross” each other in the night sky causing a moving conjunction AT 29 degrees Leo. If that wasn’t enough (and it really is), Mercury is going Direct on Tuesday (Sept. 5th) at… you guessed it… 28 degrees Leo!!

Mercury (mind and communication) will be united with Mars (action and vitality) and you can finally move mountains in the right direction. Creativity, assertiveness and expression will be easy to access. This is an amazing event, and really beautiful. Astrology never ceases to amaze me.

Saturn turned Direct at 21 Sagittarius on Friday, August 25th at five in the morning. It’s the planet of responsibility, discipline and reality and can feel HEAVY. When Saturn is retrograde, things appear less stable in our personal lives and society at large. Thankfully we are now moving Direct, and issues will begin to get back on course. If you haven’t made progress on a project or goal, there’s steady movement now. Saturn in Sagittarius asks us to recommit to our Truth, Beliefs and Goals, and have discipline in our day to day activities.

The August 21st eclipse will be rolling out and affecting us for the next six months. Since it occurred in Leo, so we can look for a rebirth or change regarding our self expression, status, and identity. Art, clothes, music, leadership and public speaking are highlighted. Did you get any insights on your life?

Everyone will be impacted by August’s eclipse in different ways. If you’re interested in how it will affect you, set up a reading with me 🙂 I can give you a huge snapshot of your life story in a 15 minute phone reading.

Alejandro Jodorowsky Explains How Tarot Cards Can Give You Creative Inspiration

 

Excellent article and video on the tarot by Alejandro Jodorowsky.

“The practice of cartomancy, or divination with cards, dates back several hundred years to at least 14th century Europe, perhaps by way of Turkey. But the specific form we know of, the tarot, likely emerged in the 17th century, and the deck we’re all most familiar with—the Rider-Waite Tarot—didn’t appear until 1909. Popular mainly with occultists like Aleister Crowley and Madame Blavatsky in the early 20th century, the tarot exploded into popular culture in the new age 70s with books like Stuart Kaplan’s Tarot Cards for Fun and Fortune Telling, and by way of cult filmmakers like Alejandro Jodorowsky.

jodoCARDS

Since its relatively recent popularization, “fun” and “fortune telling” have more or less defined most people’s attitude to the tarot, whether they approve or disapprove of either one. But for artists and poets like William Butler Yeats, T.S. Eliot, and surrealist director Jodorowsky—whose film narration is perhaps the most poetic in modern cinema—the tarot has always meant something much more mysterious and inspiring. “The tarot,” says Jodorowsky in the short film above, “will teach you how to create a soul.”

After studying the Major and Minor Arcana and the suits, and puzzling over the symbols on each card, Jodorowsky discovered that “all 78 cards could be joined in a mandala, in just one image.” Learning to see the deck thus, “You must not talk about the future. The future is a con. The tarot is a language that talks about the present. If you use it to see the future, you become a conman.” Like other mystical poets, Jodorowsky’s study of the tarot did not lead him to the supernatural but to the creative act.

And like many a poet before him, Jodorowsky explored the journey of the Fool in his 1973 film The Holy Mountain, a “dazzling, rambling, often incoherent satire,” writes Matt Zoller Seitz, that “unfurls like a hallucinogenic daydream.” Jodorowsky’s cinematic dream logic comes not only from his work as a “shamanic psychotherapist.” He also credits the tarot for his psychomagical realism. “For me,” says Jodorowsky in the video at the top, “the tarot was something more serious. It was a deep psychological search.” The result of that search—Jodorowsky’s singular and totally unforgettable body of work—speaks to us of the value of such an undertaking, whatever means one uses to get there.

Or as Jodorowsky says in one of his mystical pronouncements, “If you set your spirit to something, that phenomenon will happen.” If that sounds like magical thinking, that’s exactly what it is. Jodorowsky shows us how to read the tarot as he does, for psychological insight and creative inspiration, in the video above, addressed to a fan named John Bishop. Spanish speakers will have no trouble understanding his presentation, as he quickly slides almost fully into his native language through lack of confidence in his facility with English. (The video belongs to a series on Jodorowsky’s YouTube channel, most of them fully in Spanish without subtitles.) Selecting a translation on YouTube yields rather garbled results.”

Read more: Article

The Art of Secret Societies

Did anyone see this exhibition in NYC last year?? Here’s an excellent article by on Hyperallergenic.com:
Mystery and Benevolence
“Installation view of ‘Mystery and Benevolence: Masonic and Odd Fellows Folk Art from the Kendra and Allan Daniel Collection’ at the American Folk Art Museum (all photos by the author for Hyperallergic unless noted)

A strange visual language developed from the 18th to the 20th century behind the closed doors of American secret societies. It’s a languae made up of all-seeing eyes, ominous skulls, hourglasses, arrows, axes, and curious hands holding hearts. Each of these icons was deeply symbolic for the thousands of people — mostly men — who participated in rituals of borrowed meaning, where ancient Egypt, biblical Christianity, and some homegrown amusements like wooden goats on wheels met the rise of American folk art. The American Folk Art Museum’s (AFAM) Mystery and Benevolence: Masonic and Odd Fellows Folk Art from the Kendra and Allan Daniel Collection examines this often hidden history through its arcane artifacts.

Unidentified Man in Independent Order of Odd Fellows Regalia, Artist unidentified (United States, 1840–1860), quarter-plate daguerreotype, 4 3/4 x 3 3/4 inches (courtesy American Folk Art Museum)
Unidentified Man in Independent Order of Odd Fellows Regalia, Artist unidentified (United States, 1840–60), quarter-plate daguerreotype, 4 3/4 x 3 3/4 in (courtesy American Folk Art Museum) (click to enlarge)

Mystery and Benevolence was curated by Stacy C. Hollander, chief curator and director of exhibitions at AFAM, and Aimee E. Newell, director of collections at the Scottish Rite Masonic Museum and Library. It features over 200 objects recently donated to the museum by Kendra and Allan Daniel, who spent three decades buying up the once-secretive art. Installed in the museum, the objects are an exuberant display of the “golden age” of Masonic and Odd Fellows objects, when American decorative and folk art merged with the need for a sense of belonging in the new country.

“After becoming an independent nation in the 1780s, America was seeking to establish its own cultural identity; Freemasonry offered a source of images that resonated with the new nation’s values of equality and liberty,” Newell writes in the accompanying catalogue. “Freemasonry’s visual language and American style began to intersect almost as soon as victory over the British was declared, and continued to adapt as the nation grew and the fraternity evolved. ”

Much of the exhibition contextualizes this long-hidden art in the history of the societies, such as their charity work. The Odd Fellows, formed in 18th-century London, were organized as a benevolent group to support the sick, orphans, and those who died without money for a funeral. One of their mission statements is proclaimed in red and gold on a large wooden sign: “Bury the Dead.” There are also axes indicating how the Odd Fellows saw themselves as “pioneers in the pathway of life”; staffs topped with a heart in the hand were a reminder to be open to others.

Similarly, even the more ghoulish imagery had some meaning connected to charity, and selflessness. The skulls, hourglasses, and skeletons holding shields painted with the word “fidelity” were all reminders of mortality, and how one’s brief time on earth could be better dedicated to others. Reverend Aaron B. Grosh wrote in 1853’s The Odd Fellow’s Manual: “Only the good or evil of our lives will survive us on earth, to draw down on our memories the blessings of those we have aided, or the contempt and reproach of those we have injured.”

Installation view of 'Mystery and Benevolence'
Installation view of ‘Mystery and Benevolence,’ including items related to funerary traditions
Mystery and Benevolence
Independent Order of Odd Fellows Archway for Ensenore Lodge No. 438, signed “W. C. Baptist” (Auburn, New York, 1919), paint and gold leaf on wood with metal
Mystery and Benevolence
Installation view of ‘Mystery and Benevolence’

“The outward form of each symbol offers a different point of access, but in its context within the lexicon of the fraternity, deeper meanings are revealed to those for whom the symbols are signified,” Hollander writes in the catalogue. “In this, the art of fellowship is not dissimilar to the art of alchemy, its secret knowledge also protected by its practitioners.”

Independent Order of Odd Fellows Banner, Artist unidentified (United States, 1900–1920), paint on canvas, with wood and metal, 88 1/2 x 71 inches (courtesy American Folk Art Museum)
Independent Order of Odd Fellows Banner, Artist unidentified (United States, 1900–20), paint on canvas, with wood and metal, 88 1/2 x 71 in (courtesy American Folk Art Museum) (click to enlarge)

In As Above, So Below: Art of the American Fraternal Society, 1850–1930, recently published by the University of Texas Press, it’s noted that from 1890 to 1915, an “estimated one in five men belonged to at least one society.” Fraternal societies still exist, although their numbers have greatly dwindled. According to the Masonic Service Association of North America, there were 1,211,183 members in 2014.

The Masons are the country’s oldest established fraternal order, with numerous lodges founded in the 18th century across the US. In one painting on view at AFAM, their most famous member, George Washington, stands proudly at a Masonic altar. The Odd Fellows soon followed and quickly gained an important membership of their own, as did other societies like the Knights Templar, Shriners, and Junior Order of United American Mechanics. All were mostly white, male, and protestant, albeit from across different economic classes.

The objects in Mystery and Benevolence are seductive with their strangeness and feel somehow accessible through the ordinariness of the materials. I remember visiting the Masonic Hall on 23rd Street in Manhattan, and the tour guide (a Mason) pointing out that all the grand architectural flourishes were fancy fakery. The Corinthian columns, the Renaissance murals, and the Gothic arches that adorned different meeting rooms were all plaster — beautifully painted, but mimicry of the exotic and ancient all the same.

Likewise, the objects in this exhibition are visually stunning, from a late 19th-century staff wrapped with a snake to a towering column topped with a globe. There are some truly masterful pieces, like an intricate marquetry table by James J. Crozier, yet for the most part, the artists remain unidentified and the closest an object gets to a precious material is in the application of some gold leaf on the edges.

These are rare artifacts of an occult culture, each a labor of love for their ritual purpose, not originally intended as art, but as a tool of connection through shared rites. The value of these pieces goes beyond their folk art status. They represent a clandestine history embedded within the story of the United States, where for decades a large percentage of its men would amble over to the local lodge after dark, have a drink (or several), don a scarlet robe, then ponder a skeletal memento mori — or take a ride on a wooden goat around the lodge room.

Mystery and Benevolence
Hand staffs in ‘Mystery and Benevolence’
Mystery and Benevolence
Independent Order of Odd Fellows Axe for Newtown Lodge No. 4440 (United States, 1850–75); Independent Order of Odd Fellows skull and crossbones plaque (United States, 1875–1900), paint and gold leaf on wood
Washington as a Freemason, Publisher unidentified (United States, late-19th century), oleograph on linen, 28 1/2 x 22 3/8 x 1 3/8 inches (courtesy American Folk Art Museum, photo by José Andrés Ramírez)
Washington as a Freemason, Publisher unidentified (United States, late 19th century), oleograph on linen, 28 1/2 x 22 3/8 x 1 3/8 in (courtesy American Folk Art Museum, photo by José Andrés Ramírez)
Mystery and Benevolence
Pair of Cherubim, artist unidentified (United States, 1900–25), metal with traces of gold leaf. They likely were once on a replica of the Ark of the Covenant.
Mystery and Benevolence
Installation view of ‘Mystery and Benevolence’
Mystery and Benevolence
Odd Fellows axes in ‘Mystery and Benevolence’
Independent Order of Odd Fellows Staff with Serpent, Artist unidentified (United States, 1875–1900), paint on wood, 53 x 5 x 4 3/4 inches (courtesy American Folk Art Museum, photo by José Andrés Ramírez)
Independent Order of Odd Fellows Staff with Serpent, Artist unidentified (United States, 1875–1900), paint on wood, 53 x 5 x 4 3/4 in (courtesy American Folk Art Museum, photo by José Andrés Ramírez)
Mystery and Benevolence
Painting of a church and cemetery in ‘Mystery and Benevolence’
Independent Order of Odd Fellows Carpet, Artist unidentified (United States,1875–1925), wool, 61 x 35 1/2 inches (courtesy American Folk Art Museum, photo by José Andrés Ramírez)
Independent Order of Odd Fellows Carpet, Artist unidentified (United States,1875–1925), wool, 61 x 35 1/2 in (courtesy American Folk Art Museum, photo by José Andrés Ramírez)
Mystery and Benevolence
Installation view of ‘Mystery and Benevolence’
Independent Order of Odd Fellows Tracing Board, Artist unidentified (United States, 1850–1900), oil on canvas, 33 1/4 x 39 1/2 x 2 1/8 inches (courtesy American Folk Art Museum, photo by José Andrés Ramírez)
Independent Order of Odd Fellows Tracing Board, Artist unidentified (United States, 1850–1900), oil on canvas, 33 1/4 x 39 1/2 x 2 1/8 in (courtesy American Folk Art Museum, photo by José Andrés Ramírez)”
Mystery and Benevolence
Installation view of ‘Mystery and Benevolence’

Mystery and Benevolence: Masonic and Odd Fellows Folk Art from the Kendra and Allan Daniel Collectioncontinues at the American Folk Art Museum (2 Lincoln Square, Upper West Side, Manhattan) through May 8.

 

http://hyperallergic.com/271755/folk-art-relics-from-the-golden-age-of-americas-secret-societies/

and…

http://www.nytimes.com/2016/04/08/arts/design/the-art-of-secret-societies-filled-with-codes-and-glyphs.html?_r=4