Tag Archives: Woody Guthrie

Who Was Woody Guthrie?

This week’s article includes an audio presentation on the life and music of Woody Guthrie. It includes an interview with Guthrie, plus 11 songs, with guest appearances by Bob Dylan, George Harrison, U2 and others. It’s downloadable and can be played on any kind of device. — efc

Dear Fellow Traveler:

Who was Woody Guthrie, really?

I ask this acknowledging how little we know about the human experience — where we come from, where we are, the true history of our planet, and what the purpose of our journey here is. One thing we can say for sure is that we experience considerable adversity here, and that there’s often a reluctance by many people to offer our support to those who are struggling.

Planet Waves
Woodrow Wilson “Woody” Guthrie.

We do a lot of turning the other way. We do a lot of pretending that this or that is not my problem, it’s your problem. We tend to see ourselves as separate from the people around us, preferring to emphasize what’s different rather than what we have in common — and we suffer for it.

For that reason, we need messengers, and from time to time, one shows up and we actually listen to what they have to say. Woody Guthrie, who would be 100 years old on Saturday, came to teach us something about our experience here, and how we can open our hearts and minds to the people we might not notice, or prefer not to notice. And amazingly, many people noticed. By the time of his premature death of a rare genetic disorder in 1967, he was a well-respected figure in American music, and considered the progenitor of American folk tradition, the inspiration for many musicians to write their own protest songs, and a source of encouragement for many activists to speak up against injustice.

In his human form, Woody was a poet, singer, songwriter and author who collected songs from the back alleys and backwoods of the United States traveling among freed slaves and their children, and farmers displaced from their land by foreclosure. He lived among Indians, hillbillies and city folk — all the while collecting songs and their endless variants.

It’s the soul of Woody Guthrie that does something a lot deeper, embodying an authenticity and selflessness that seems to be coming from just a bit deeper than the usual place, or maybe a bit beyond the world as we think of it.

Planet Waves
Woody Guthrie in New York City, where he seemed to be very much at home — living in Brooklyn (right near the beach), Manhattan and Staten Island at different times.

Yet Woody was truly a man of this world and of the American experience. He was born in Okemah, Oklahoma on July 14, 1912 — on the day that the French Revolution is celebrated. In the spirit of that revolution, Guthrie understood the struggle against economic inequity and the way in which the game seems to be rigged against a fair outcome. Woody was an example of what it means to speak up for what is right, or simply what is true.

His travels took him to New York, where he lived in Brooklyn, Manhattan and Staten Island, and where he wrote his most famous song — ‘This Land is Your Land’ — in Pete Seeger’s kitchen, outside the town of Beacon, along the Hudson River.

Woody’s story is best told in music, and I’ve prepared a special edition of Planet Waves FM which includes some of his songs, a 1944 interview with Woody from BBC radio, versions of his music performed by contemporary artists, and my commentary. I also take a look at Woody’s astrology, giving a few other details than the ones I cover in this article. One theme of the audio presentation is how the folk tradition evolves from one generation to the next. To demonstrate this I play covers of Woody songs by such notables as Bruce Springsteen and U2.

I don’t think Woody would have been too surprised to see the way that the American experiment turned out. All of the issues he was writing about in the 1930s and 1940s are the same ones we’re facing today: economic struggle, banks running out of control, the profit motive driving everything, the stock market being little other than a casino where addicts gamble away the wealth of the country, people being foreclosed out of their homes, and one war after the next.

But he might be very surprised to see the way his music endured. His son Arlo once said that when his dad was in the late stages of Huntington’s disease, he taught him to play ‘This Land is Your Land,’ just to be sure that someone would remember it. Well, we all do.

Planet Waves
“This Machine Kills Fascists” blazing off of Woody’s guitar, as ever. Photo courtesy of Woody Guthrie Archives.

As you’ll hear Bruce Springsteen explain in the audio presentation, ‘This Land’ was written as an angry song, a reply to Irving Berlin’s pompous ‘God Bless America’.

Of the many comments I’ve read about Woody Guthrie this week, Chris Hedges best sums him and his mission.

“Cultures that endure carve out a protected space for those who question and challenge national myths. Artists, writers, poets, activists, journalists, philosophers, dancers, musicians, actors, directors and renegades must be tolerated if a culture is to be pulled back from disaster. Members of this intellectual and artistic class, who are usually not welcome in the stultifying halls of academia where mediocrity is triumphant, serve as prophets.”

He continues, “They are dismissed, or labeled by the power elites as subversive, because they do not embrace collective self-worship. They force us to confront unexamined assumptions, ones that, if not challenged, lead to destruction. They expose the ruling elites as hollow and corrupt. They articulate the senselessness of a system built on the ideology of endless growth, ceaseless exploitation and constant expansion. They warn us about the poison of careerism and the futility of the search for happiness in the accumulation of wealth.”

And Chris concludes, “They make us face ourselves, from the bitter reality of slavery and Jim Crow to the genocidal slaughter of Native Americans to the repression of working-class movements to the atrocities carried out in imperial wars to the assault on the ecosystem. They make us unsure of our virtue. They challenge the easy clich├ęs we use to describe the nation — the land of the free, the greatest country on earth, the beacon of liberty — to expose our darkness, crimes and ignorance. They offer the possibility of a life of meaning and the capacity for transformation.”

Where do we find this in Woody Guthrie’s chart? Let’s take a look. His birth time is not known; the chart we have is a proposed rectification, wherein I give him Sagittarius — the sign of the traveler — in the ascendant.

Planet Waves
This is my proposed rectification of Woody Guthrie’s natal chart, giving him Sagittarius rising — a visionary, a teacher and a traveler. Woody’s strong Cancer signature mimics the United States Sibly chart, which also has many planets in Cancer in the 8th house of shared resources — “this land is my land, this land is your land.”

I’ve oriented the chart with Jupiter (the teacher and benefactor) rising, as well as Juno (a champion of social justice) in the ascendant as well. I’ve put Vesta, the keeper of the flame, as the most elevated planet (in the audio, you will hear what his daughter Nora has to say about coal holders, the members of the tribe who carry the burning ember to the next campsite).

Woody was born with many planets in the sign Cancer, the sign of home. You could say he was an idealist, with all of those planets, including the Sun, the Moon and Venus, clustered around Neptune. Or you could say that his passion for life and for humanity was driven by a kind of mysticism that was veiled by his plain talk and somewhat aloof personality.

Yet just beneath that somewhat scratchy, sleep-with-his-boots-on layer was the sustained passion that can only come with strong water placements. Those include Chiron in Pisces, which he has square Jupiter — one of the aspects that points to a quest for social justice. These social justice markers show up all over his chart — for example his square between Juno (usually associated with marriage, though also an indicator of social consciousness) conjunct Jupiter and square Chiron. Though Woody had three wives, his first love was standing up for humanity.

He has Mercury in Leo (which has returned for a long stay in that sign at the time of his 100th birthday) suggesting that his words are as good as gold — or perhaps an example of the only true gold. His Mars and Ceres in Leo propose that maybe the only other truly useful form of gold is food.

We need Woody Guthrie today. We need his perception, his sense of fairness and most of all his willingness to speak up against injustice. We need his example of how necessary it is for those who feel the calling to tell the truth.

Fortunately, nearly all of his words and music survive, though more than that, the thing they would speak to in the human spirit is alive within each of us. As his contemporary, novelist John Steinbeck said of him, “There is the will of a people to endure and fight against oppression. I think we call this the American spirit.”

In case you’re inclined to confuse the American spirit with Bain Capital, repealing ‘Obamacare’ or the local shopping mall, I suggest you investigate the Declaration of Independence and see what you find there. Or, you can listen to the magnificent words and music of Woody Guthrie, which I’ve put together in a 75-minute presentation. That page includes instructions for listening on any kind of device, including burning to CD.

It’s an honor to share this with you, and I’ve learned a lot diving into Woody’s music and legacy the past week putting it together.

Lovingly,

 

Planet Waves

Mercury Stations Retrograde This Weekend

We’re about to begin the fourth inner planet retrograde of 2012 — Mercury stations retrograde in Leo at 10:16 pm EDT Saturday. This will be an eventful retrograde because Mercury will cover the early degrees of Leo, putting it into aspect with many planets — Venus, Chiron, Uranus, Pluto, Ceres, Jupiter, the lunar nodes and Neptune. Then on Aug. 8 it will turn around and aspect most of those planets again, moving in direct motion.

Planet Waves
Composite image of Mercury by MESSENGER spacecraft in 2008. Yellow impact craters from asteroids show freshly ejected material; craters with blue show that fresh material was ejected from beneath the surface, indicating volcanoes. Photo: NASA.

This weekend we also have a lot of hot activity on the cardinal cross. The Sun in Cancer makes a conjunction to Varuna, square to Eris and square to Saturn. This may feel like figuring out you’re hemmed into a situation you want to get out of, but are not quite sure how to do it. The thing to remember is, this has gone on for a while, and even if you decide you want to take action, it would be better to avoid that the weekend Mercury is stationing; rather than lurch, spend the next few days sorting out the issues, and see where you stand by the middle of next week. Mercury stationing retrograde tends to shake out information, which you will then need to evaluate.

Additionally, Mars in Libra is now very close to a square to Pluto in Capricorn and opposition to Uranus in Aries. That will only add to the tension, and it could precipitate events prematurely — definitely keep your cool if the pressure is on. There is a path of correct action; let the astrology feed your courage and resolve while you use your mind to figure out what is best for you to do — and please, aim high.

Many aspects means many points of contact, and where Mercury is involved, plenty to think (and talk) about. With Mercury retrograde, the subject matter becomes inwardly focused and will tend to have an orientation on resolving the past. You may find yourself reviewing the past few months, reconsidering how you feel or what your opinion is, and making some decisions about what you want. The thing is, when deciding what you want, it helps to make that from among choices that you really want.

Leo is the sign of gold and the gold standard: the reference by which we measure material value, and by metaphor, spiritual value. In its conceptual form (as an astrological sign) it could represent both, and the retrograde could be a valuable time to sort out some of your material values in our time of profound change, and what we think of as economic crisis. It would be helpful if we acknowledged how much of that economic crisis really amounts to a crisis of values.

That’s to say: what’s really important to us, and do we do anything about it? Do we see our spending habits as a reflection of our values? Do we recognize that we exert power every time we direct our cash flow? Mercury will be trekking through the central aspect pattern that’s influencing all of us right now — the Uranus-Chiron-Neptune-Pluto configuration. Mercury influences our individual thought patterns, and now it’s in a long phase of contact with something much bigger than any individual. This is a fine opportunity to consider where we really stand and an invitation to change our minds about what we learn.

The Cancer New Moon is just past midnight EDT on Thursday, July 19.

 

Planet Waves

Fukushima Children Get Lifetime Radiation Dose

A Japanese study has found some children who live near the Fukushima nuclear plant have received lifetime doses of radiation to their thyroid glands, one of the organs that’s most sensitive to radiation. Meanwhile, radiation continues to dump into the Pacific Ocean, many fish are migratory, and all the world’s oceans are interconnected.

Scientists from Japan’s Institute of Radiological Sciences used existing government data to measure the internal radiation exposure of more than 1,000 Fukushima children, who were exposed after the nuclear plants melted down after an earthquake and tsunami. The Japanese government has been claiming that more than half of the children had zero exposure, though the independent study found that on average they did receive thyroid gland doses of internal radiation. Several children were judged to have received an equivalent lifetime dose to the thyroid. But the government says it does not plan to notify the parents out of fear of creating anxiety.

 

Planet Waves

Jill Stein: Green Party Candidate for President is Earthy Taurus

We’re used to elections being a choice between bad and worse — which is a good way to maintain cynicism and disinterest in the political system. The United States does have parties other than the Republicrats, though you rarely hear of them. One is the Green party, which for years was represented by Ralph Nader as its candidate for president. Nader is no longer running, and someone named Jill Stein is the presumptive nominee.

Planet Waves
Jill Stein, a Green Party candidate for president, during her campaign for governor of Massachusetts in 2002. Photo by Michael Manning.

Stein was born in Chicago and is now a resident of Massachusetts, where she’s run for a number of different offices (including governor) but so far has only won a seat on the Lexington town board. Her platform includes the Green New Deal, which includes Americans having the right to a living wage and a clean environment. Stein would seem to have the astrology of a Green Party candidate — she has the Sun in Taurus in an exact conjunction to retrograde Mercury — she is someone who can think for herself. And she has Saturn, Juno and Mars in Virgo, suggesting an authentic motivation to care for the Earth. Like Woody Guthrie, she has Jupiter square Chiron, one mark of a true social crusader.

In an interview with the organization PR Watch, she said recently, “Of the trillion dollars we spend [on health care] every year, 75 percent of that is spent on chronic diseases that are preventable for half the cost. So I would just add as ancillaries to that; forgiving student debt and making public higher education free is a key part of this, and of course downsizing the military and bringing the troops home as well.”

A New York Times interview with Jill Stein in February 2012 stated her criticism of President Obama. When asked if the president is deserving of credit, Stein stated “As we found on issue after issue — the war, reappointing George Bush’s secretary of defense, sticking to George Bush’s timeline on Iraq, expanding the war, expanding the drone wars all over the place. And how about bringing Wall Street in, the guys who created the problem, among his first appointments. It was pretty clear right then that this was going to be business as usual on steroids. We’re certainly not more secure, more equitable, more healthy or safer internationally, with what Obama has brought.”

On July 11, 2012, Stein selected anti-poverty activist Cheri Honkala as her running mate for the Green vice-presidential nomination. Though it’s hard to think of this as being more than a token gesture, use your imagination and consider what would happen if these women had a voice on the national stage — even as candidates who are taken seriously.

 

Planet Waves

Report on Penn State a Study in Enabling Behavior

One thing I’ve noticed working with many clients unraveling their childhood sex abuse is that there’s generally someone in the household who knows what’s going on. How is it possible that a stepfather can abuse a child in the house for years with the mother home, and the mother has no idea what’s going on? Well, there are a lot of ways this happens, and we found out about many of them with the release of the report on the Penn State scandal by Louis Freeh, a former federal judge and director of the FBI under Bill Clinton and George W. Bush.

Planet Waves
Minor planet search showing Hebe right in the mix of many planets in the mid-mutable signs, including Pholus and Ixion, which describe a legacy of conduct without the concern for consequences, or what you can think of as amorality — a sign of our times.

In a household, the person who serves as the enabler is just as responsible for what happens to the child as the perpetrator is. The world seems to agree that this is probably true in the case of Penn State as well, though the real test is whether those who helped out will be prosecuted.

I am still researching the report and the associated astrology, though in simple terms the document — released in Philadelphia at 9:00 am on Thursday, July 12, 2012 (according to the university’s website) — concluded that everyone knew, and did nothing out of concern about bad publicity for the university’s powerhouse football program. Last month Jerry Sandusky was convicted of 45 counts of child sexual abuse, most of which occurred in his home or in Penn State facilities.

When studying the chart of an abuse situation, one of the first points to check is asteroid Hebe, the cupbearer. Hebe’s glyph includes a triangle, which Martha Lang Wescott reminds astrologers to think of as the Karpman triangle when they draw the shape — the diagram that helps us understand abuse situations. Though the triangle technically covers victim-persecutor-rescuer, the third position can also include “let me help you” kind of enabling behavior. The helpers in this situation ranged from a top vice president of the university, the police, the director of the athletic program and the famed Joe Paterno, the football team’s coach. There was also a far-reaching conspiracy within the Happy Valley community to make sure that its main bread and butter, and source of its self image — college football — stayed in business. And Sandusky raped most of the kids at home, while his wife was in the house. She says she had no clue.

In the chart, we find Hebe square a troubling outer-planet aspect that’s been developing for years — Pholus (pressure release; addictive situations; multigenerational legacy) conjunct Ixion (amoral conduct; anyone is capable of anything), both in Sagittarius. This conjunction seems to be one of the hallmarks of our times, when we have to figure out again that there’s such a thing as right and wrong. Hebe shows up in aspect to other planets along the Sagittarius/Gemini axis that keep coming up (generally when the Sun passes through a mutable sign).

One thing to understand about abuse situations is that they seem to be fed by the energy of repression — that is, of secrecy, and of sexual energy having little in the way of healthy outlets. Then once the scandal comes out, it seems to open things up but in truth there is little that will hold down sexual energy or discussion of the incident as effectively as public disclosure, which can in turn feed future situations rather than move them in the direction of resolution. It might seem like there is no way out — but there is. We will have more on this issue around the time of the Leo New Moon next month.

 

Planet Waves

About that Safe, Effective MMR Vaccine Everyone Gets

People who refuse to vaccinate their children are often considered a little freaky, as if they’re risking their health and that of every kid in school. But now two former employees of Merck Pharmaceutical, a British multinational, are accusing the drug company of using improper testing methods and falsifying data to make the MMR (measles, mumps, rubella) vaccine appear highly effective when the opposite is true.

Planet Waves
Workers make openings in chicken eggs in preparation for a measles vaccine.

Former Merck virologists Stephen Krahling and Joan Wlochowski say that they “witnessed firsthand the improper testing and data falsification in which Merck engaged to artificially inflate the vaccine’s efficacy findings,” according to Courthouse News Service. The allegations are contained in a 2010 lawsuit, which was confidential until late June. The case has not been decided yet.

In a second lawsuit, a federal anti-trust class action was filed by Chatom Primary Care. Again, according to the Courthouse News Service, “Merck has known for a decade that its mumps vaccine is ‘far less effective’ than it tells the government, and it falsified test results and sold millions of doses of ‘questionable efficacy’, flooding and monopolizing the market.” This is another way of saying that the vaccine ‘works’ as long as it drives in profits for the company (which is just the only definition of ‘works’ in the chemical or pharma industries).

Merck is the only manufacturer licensed by the FDA to sell the mumps vaccine in the United States, and if it could not show that the vaccine was 95 percent effective, it risked losing its lucrative monopoly. Chatom claims that Merck went to great lengths to prop up the bogus figures even though it knew that the attenuated virus from which it created the vaccine had been altered over the years during the manufacturing process, and that the quality of the vaccine had degraded as a result. An attenuated virus is a live virus that’s had its toxicity reduced.

Merck’s response is that none of the lawsuit’s allegations relate to the safety of its products, which avoids the issue of the deception about the product’s effectiveness. This is the same MMR vaccine that has been accused of causing autism, though those claims have not been fully documented. Numerous agencies and organizations have said that there is no relationship between the vaccine and autism — but bigger lies have survived such scrutiny.

Even if Merck’s MMR vaccine were to cause autism, the company is shielded from liability. Dr. Joe Mercola notes that, “Merck lost many billions when their drug, Vioxx, killed tens of thousands of people and was taken off the market in 2004. If any of their vaccines killed similar numbers, or even more, they would not be held liable in damages for a single cent because Congress and the U.S. Supreme Court have completely shielded big drug companies like Merck from civil liability for vaccine injuries and deaths.”

 

Planet Waves

Planet Waves monthly horoscopes provide a broader perspective that surveys the themes of the coming month and often, the weeks that follow. The revised version of the Planet Waves July monthly horoscope (originally published Friday, June 22) was published Saturday June 23. Inner Space for July was published on Tuesday, June 26. The most recent Moonshine horoscope by Genevieve Hathaway (for July) was published on July 3. Please note a change in the publishing pattern. For a few months we were publishing the monthly horoscope on Wednesday evenings, but that was proving to be too confusing. We have shifted the monthly to be incorporated into the Friday issue after the Sun has entered a new sign; Inner Space still publishes on Tuesdays. — efc

 

Planet Waves

Planet Waves FM: Conversation with Elisa Novick

This week Elisa Novick returns to Planet Waves FM. Elisa is a master healer who has a very interesting story to tell. The program begins with an overview of the current astrology, including Mercury stationing retrograde, Sun square Saturn and a few other points of interest. [Tech note to listeners: the interview is in stereo! If you can only hear one of us talking, connect your other speaker or figure out how to put your system into mono.]

Planet Waves
Elisa Novick.

This week’s edition is part one of two is part one of two with Elisa — our whole conversation is about two hours and 15 minutes. In this first segment, we cover the vast topic of learning to listen to your inner spiritual guidance. This is something that nearly everyone seeks and for some reason relatively few people find. Our conversation might make it seem like a more practical matter.

We find out something about how Elisa started off in her spiritual practice and how she got to where she is today (when some of her best friends are what we would call plants!). This is an unusually candid discussion of how much it’s possible to learn, and why you might want to learn it.

As with all things spiritual or which we’re told are spiritual, I suggest you bring your discernment and your curiosity with you. The two work together: if you encounter an idea that you’re questioning, or have a response you’re wondering about, your curiosity and discernment can blend into a light that will allow you to see into places in yourself you haven’t necessarily encountered before.

We last heard from Elisa in an article from our Friday subscriber series, about Beltane — called In Praise of Trees. Don’t miss the really exciting PDF connected to this article. We will be back with part two of this week’s interview next week.

Elisa does private counseling, and she teaches some informative classes. If you can, get to the Hudson Valley for the next Tree Love workshop! You can reach her through her website Thriving Planet. If you’re curious to hear the interview we did back in October, here is the link.

Here is your program in the old player, where you’ll find the full archives of Planet Waves FM and a downloadable zip file. Here is another archive of recent programs (with descriptions).

Enjoy! And please share your thoughts, reflections and any questions you may have on the blog post connected to this edition.

 

Planet Waves


Friday, July 6, 2012. Weekly Horoscope #910 | Eric’s Zodiac Sign Descriptions

Cancer Birthdays: At the Crossroads of Taking Action

If you have a birthday in the vicinity, you’re at the point of taking action, including after a long delay — though as Mercury stations retrograde you may be feeling hesitant. Don’t let that get in the way of making your decisions about what you want, getting organized and then paying attention for the right moment to take action. There is considerable activity in the cardinal signs (all of them — Aries, Cancer, Libra and Capricorn), which may be giving you the feeling of ‘life coming at you from all directions’ — or alternately, the sensation of getting the parts working together. Though it’s too much to describe in detail here, there are actually two different cardinal cross structures — one involving the Sun square Saturn and the other involving Mars square Pluto and opposite Uranus. Sun square Saturn is your ability to focus the emotional discipline that you need at this time in your life, and also comes with a reminder that the playing field is leveler than you think. You have to try out the game and see how you do. Second is Mars coming into the Uranus-Pluto square — that’s like a fire being lit under your ass, including the emotional strength to take action. This energy can be devoted to any aspect of your life. There are two keys: one is microfocus on your timing. Consider carefully what action you take at any given time. Second is that with so much Mars power, you don’t need to exert much energy — a little less than you think would be sufficient. Guide things more than direct them; focus your energy rather than pushing the river and you will get consistently surprising results through the next year of your life.

Aries (March 20-April 19)

Aries (March 20-April 19) — You may feel like you’re backed into an emotional corner, though I strongly suggest you not react that way. Instead, consider what your current circumstances are describing, and ask yourself: is it time to sweat this out, or is it time to make a change? There comes a point when persistent frustration can no longer be considered as something that will pass — especially if the years are passing faster than the situation. The deeper question is, what insecurities stand between you and making a decision? I suggest you be patient and carefully examine all the facts. Make a timeline and see how far back you can trace this. Then I suggest you design a plan that will take you through the end of August to implement. Timing is everything; the pressure you may be feeling now is likely to increase over the next week, and with Mercury stationing retrograde over the weekend, you really want make clear decisions with your mind rather than your emotions.

Hello Aries — Eric has written a new description for your sign that you have access to from this link (no password needed).

Taurus (April 19- May 20)

Taurus (April 19-May 20) — Over the next week you may get a taste of how complex an emotional situation is, though the outer circumstances are truly the superficial layer. When you start asking yourself the right questions, you will discover that the real subject involves your self-esteem. A central question is not how much someone else values you — rather, it’s how much do you value yourself, and are you able to live and breathe that value? As you move through the events of the next week, quietly ask yourself that question over and over again. You can also inquire whether you feel like you’re associating with people who really do honor the best things about you. While you’re doing that, it would be healthy to inquire whether you notice and appreciate the qualities that others offer you. Sincere and openly expressed gratitude is a remarkably accurate measure of self-esteem.

Hello Taurus — Eric has written a new description for your sign that you have access to from this link (no password needed) If you would like to hear your Taurus birthday reading, please visit this link.

Gemini (May 20- June 21)

Gemini (May 20-June 21) — It’s time you recognize the value of your words. Indeed, I suggest you consider that what you say and how you say it are your most precious assets. If you were to keep that firmly in mind, you might say less, and you would ensure that any promise you make is something you’re fully prepared to honor. While Mercury is retrograde for the next few weeks, I suggest you consider any commitments you have that you haven’t come through on yet, and make a plan for what to do about them. You can renegotiate rather than renege; the most vital thing is that you have a clear understanding with whomever you have an arrangement, or with anyone to whom you’ve made a promise. If you go through your life systematically and settle your affairs with people, you will proceed differently when making commitments in the future. And remember — everything you say is a kind of promise.

Hello Gemini — Eric has written a new description for your sign that you have access to from this link (no password needed). Your Gemini birthday reading is ready! Click here for an hour of astrology plus a tarot reading by Eric.

Cancer (June 21- July 22)

Cancer (June 21-July 22) — You may be feeling hemmed in or backed into an emotional corner. If that’s true, it’s essential that you keep your cool and take stock of your situation before you react or even respond. What you may be perceiving as a negative situation could easily be an opportunity for cooperation, lending itself just as well to a creative response. That’s all a matter of perspective — and how confident you are. I would propose a litmus test for your own life: if you have options, you’re safe, and your situation is workable. If you don’t like the options you have, be creative and think of new ones. If nothing else, the astrology of the coming week or so is designed to spur you into action on some of your most meaningful goals. This can feel like having a fire lit under your ass, or it can feel like responding to the call of destiny; the choice is pretty much all yours.

Hello Cancer — Eric has written a new description for your sign that you have access to from this link (no password needed). Your Cancer birthday reading is ready! It includes more than hour of astrology plus a tarot reading, and has been wildly popular (also great for Cancer rising people). Use this link to order.

Leo (July 22- Aug. 23)

Leo (July 22-Aug. 23) — Mercury has been in your sign since June 25, and it will be there through Aug 31 — longer than two months, owing to the fact that it’s about to be retrograde for the next 24 days. If I may suggest something bold, this is an excellent opportunity for you to use and develop your mind. You would be amazed how rarely this happens. If you are doing something and you encounter resistance, stop and use your mind. One thing to avoid right now is anything with the feeling of pushing a rock up a hill. If you want to accomplish something but you feel like you lack the confidence, stop and think. If you do, you’ll notice that you have more than enough experience to achieve what you want — if you remember to use what you know. The extent to which so many people forget or refuse to keep their mind in the ON position is astounding, and you will benefit handsomely from remembering.

Hello Leo — Eric has written a new description for your sign that you have access to from this link (no password needed).

 



Planet Waves


 

Virgo (Aug. 23- Sep. 22)

Virgo (Aug. 23-Sep. 22) — One key to happiness is learning from your mistakes. This is a skill in itself, and indeed it may even qualify as a talent. The extent to which you master that skill reflects how serious you are about living your life fully. Learning is one of the best ways to save time. When you have a reason to learn something, do it well: truly get a grasp of the subject matter. At the moment, I suggest you slow down where a career or professional matter is concerned, pause making decisions, and study your relationship to authority. That means people who seem to have authority in your life (including benefactors) and situations where you’re personally responsible for something. The lesson? How not to be guided by your insecurities, or said another way, how not to be afraid of yourself, or your power to make decisions. If you make a mistake, figure out what went wrong, and start over.

Hello Virgo — Eric has written a new description for your sign that you have access to from this link (no password needed).

Libra (Sep. 22 - Oct. 23)

Libra (Sep. 22-Oct. 23) — First of two thoughts: I suggest you consider the value of your image. It may actually be worth something, and more meaningfully, worth something to you. How you’re perceived actually has a bearing on your life. You may be involved in a series of adjustments to make sure that how you present yourself to others is consistent with who you actually are; your current solar chart is a study in sincerity. Being authentic saves energy — a lot of it, too. Second: this is the time to appreciate your friends, and let them know how much you care about them. Of all the things or circumstances in the world that have actual meaning, the people who have demonstrated that they’re there for you are at the top of the list. Count yourself among the most fortunate people on Earth if you understand the concept ‘trust’ and if you have even one person you know in your heart is a friend.

Hello Libra — Eric has written a new description for your sign that you have access to from this link (no password needed).

Scorpio (Oct. 23- Nov. 22)

Scorpio (Oct. 23-Nov. 22) — You can turn the mental or emotional pressure you’re feeling into a brainstorm. The psychic radar known as astrology looks like you might be stressed, even to the point of panic attacks. Don’t be fooled by the subject matter: remember that energy is energy, and the first skill of the Scorpio Jedi is directing all energy into a constructive, creative or healing force. By all energy, I mean everything from passion to anxiety, from desire to curiosity. The key is going to be remembering this when the energy manifests in some form you would not prefer — and keeping your head on. Meanwhile, I would maintain a good vibes posture. Walk away from arguments. Remind yourself how safe you are (and if you’re not, make a decision), and remember that the light you hold around yourself shines out into the world.

Hello Scorpio — Eric has written a new description for your sign that you have access to from this link (no password needed).

Sagittarius (Nov. 22 - Dec. 22)

Sagittarius (Nov. 22-Dec. 22) — Your life would be a lot easier if you start from the premise that you don’t understand the changes someone else is going through. This will get your past perceptions, opinions and ideas about the relationship out of the way, and grant you the ability to do the one thing that rarely ever happens: to see someone else clearly in this moment. You may seem to be the one that’s changing, though a lot more is going on than that, no matter what anyone else may say or accuse you of. It’s way too easy to go into blame mode when it comes to intimate encounters with others, and you can do yourself a big favor by setting that aside, and noticing when others are doing it to you. In fact, you are changing, someone close to you is changing, and the whole relationship seems to be taking a step into the abyss. This will be less stressful than what you’ve been through recently.

Hello Sagittarius — Eric has written a new description for your sign that you have access to from this link (no password needed).

Capricorn (Dec. 22- Jan. 20)

Capricorn (Dec. 22-Jan. 20) — There’s no debate that people are free: both you and the people close to you. This is true no matter how trapped anyone may feel, by whatever they think is trapping them. I suggest you take some time over the next few weeks and consider the agreements you have with others, or what Carolyn Myss calls ‘sacred contracts’. Those are all up for review now, which does not mean cancellation but rather a clear evaluation. Consider the commitments you have to others, the commitments they have to you, and where these promises intersect with your life path. You need to ask some basic questions, such as, does this agreement serve to benefit everyone involved? Under what circumstances was the agreement made? What was its purpose and does your arrangement still serve that purpose now? This is an approximately one-month review phase, so you actually have time to think — and to feel — your way through the questions.

Hello Capricorn — Eric has written a new description for your sign that you have access to from this link (no password needed).

Aquarius (Jan. 20- Feb. 19)

Aquarius (Jan. 20-Feb. 19) — It would be just brilliant if you spent some time hanging out with the idea that sex is an experiment. That’s a way of saying it’s a direct experience, driven by curiosity, which tends to have an outcome that’s uncertain till you get there. Part of the experiment is how the experience changes any of the people involved. When sex is alive within an alive relationship, that state of change is going to be pretty much continuous, and you’re about to get a taste of that. Rather than responding with the famous ‘fixity’ of Aquarius, I suggest you adapt the flexibility of Gemini and the multiple viewpoint property of Mercury. Over the next few weeks you’ll have the ability to look back over the whole story of the relationship, and the potential to work through some of the unresolved material — though as with the rest, I suggest you proceed in the spirit of an experiment.

Hello Aquarius — Eric has written a new description for your sign that you have access to from this link (no password needed).

Pisces (Feb. 19- March 20)

Pisces (Feb. 19-March 20) — Take advantage of any factor you have available to make your work easier and more efficient. The place to pause is when you feel yourself exerting excess effort. The moment you get there, stop and rethink what you’re doing, and how you’re doing it. You may decide that something isn’t necessary; you may discover that you’ve already solved a problem; in some instances, changing the order in which you do a series of tasks will lead to considerably improved efficiency. There’s a deeper theme, though, which is the value of your work. If you really understood how useful what you do is, and how much what you do benefits others, you would think about it differently. You are due for a pay raise, though this isn’t the kind that’s coming from a boss or the accounting department; it’s coming from the recognition of your value, and making a series of adjustments honoring that fact.

Hello Pisces — Eric has written a new description for your sign that you have access to from this link (no password needed).