A Retrograde Mercury Signals Disaster Friday, Jul 21 2006 

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According to Sheldon Drobny (of Air America) over at the Huffington Post, the recent outbreak of war in Lebanon can be at least partially understood by the fact that the hostilities commenced while Mercury is [apparently] traipsing backwards.

The global crisis has intensified recently with the recent Israeli military incursions into Gaza and Lebanon. This intensity of human crisis has fallen into an astronomical period in which the planet Mercury is in retrograde. In astronomical terms, retrograde is a time when the planets appear to have a backward movement in the sky.

Before I get into the meat of this post, I just have to mention a few factoids: (more…)

A Closer Look at Cosmos and Psyche Wednesday, Jun 28 2006 

ficino-book.jpgRead part 1 here.

Cosmos and Psyche is hefty book, and it presents many interesting ideas which I am sure many people — those with some prior astrological understanding and those without — will chew on for some time. From an astrological perspective, one of the more exciting things about the book could’ve, should’ve been new access to a comprehensive collection of historical data which could in turn be cross-referenced with astrological data. I have been using Passion of the Western Mind in this precisely this manner for years.

For example in the chronology after the epilogue in my copy of Passion, I noted on page 463 that in 1925, the year Yeat’s Vision, Thomas Dewey’s Experience and Nature, and Alfred Whitehead’s Science and the Modern World were published, Pluto stationed retrograde at 12 Cancer. I did this because I was examining relationships between specific degrees which appeared to be intensified by stations of the outer planets, eclipses and partile aspects between planets, and notable events in art and science. Many of the margins within my copy of the text itself are filled with such notations indicating possible correspondences (only in my case, I used exact aspects) between various historical periods and astrological significators, as are many other books I have studied, particularly history and biographies. This is typically how many modern western astrologers begin to study mundane astrology, before moving on to the complexity of ingress and lunation charts. And Tarnas’s Passion was a godsend in terms of this kind of work and study.

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An Old World View: Rehashed (Part 1) Saturday, Jun 24 2006 

tarnas_puer.jpgRichard Tarnas is a Swiss-born, Harvard Educated, Esalen Alumni and professor of philosophy and psychology at the California Institute for Integral Studies, and is also the founding director of its graduate program in Philosophy, Cosmology, and Consciousness. He is also the author of the best-selling Passion of the Western Mind.

But for 30 years, Tarnas has kept a [sort of] secret. He dabbles in astrology. Now Tarnas has written a new book about astrology; Cosmos and Psyche, published earlier this year. Apparently, it took Tarnas over 10 years to write this enormous (569 pages inc. notes) book, following a fair amount of anticipation for it in the “astro-world” (where his secret wasn’t such a big secret) prior to its publication, which included a lengthy pre-publication interview in the Mountain Astrologer Magazine in late 2005.

So when I stumbled over it this past February on the Barnes and Noble new non-fiction display shelf, I immediately bought it, and began to read it with a great deal of excitement. Subtitled, Intimations of a New World View and based, Tarnas claims, upon 30 years* of research, it strives to address what he calls “the profound metaphysical disorientation and groundlessness that pervades contemporary human experience” by suggesting a “new metanarrative that transcends separate cultures and subcultures, an encompassing pattern of meaning that could give to collective human existence a nourishing coherence and intelligibility.”

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