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NGC 5194 Over 60,000 light-years across, M51's spiral arms and dust lanes clearly sweep in front of its companion galaxy (top), NGC 5195. Image data from the Hubble's Advanced Camera for Surveys has been reprocessed to produce this alternative portrait of the well-known interacting galaxy pair. They about 31 million light-years distant. Not far from the handle of the Big Dipper, they officially lie within the boundaries of the constellation Canes Venatici NASA {{PD}}

NGC 5194 Over 60,000 light-years across, ’94’s spiral arms and dust lanes clearly sweep in front of its companion galaxy (top), NGC 5195. Image data from the Hubble’s Advanced Camera for Surveys has been reprocessed to produce this alternative portrait of the well-known interacting galaxy pair. They are about 31 million light-years distant. Found not far from the handle of the Big Dipper, they officially lie within the boundaries of the constellation Canes Venatici NASA {{PD}}

Let’s talk about this Cardinal Grand Square that’s been around for a bit, but seems to be firming up now: Pluto, Mars-Uranus, Vesta, Zeus-Jupiter. At first it seemed to me to suggest a kind of stand-off, energetically speaking, with power firmly entrenched (Capricorn), the individual Will lighting up the group cause (Aries, with both Mars and Uranus), those things we honor as things we need to protect and nurture (Vesta in Cancer), and opportunity and desire looking for a partner (Jupiter and Zeus, respectively, in Libra)–and initially it seemed these forces balanced one another with a resulting static condition–nothing moves, but everything’s charged up. But it being formed for a few days created a curious effect: it seemed no longer static, but moving, as if it flowed in a circular fashion. Change, leads to action, leads to assessing values, leads to spotting opportunity and fosters ambitions, which leads to change, ad infinitum. We can step into and out of this swirl wherever it contacts our chart, and through the mechanism of the energy (body or point) that makes contact. That contacting Cardinal energy spurs the natal one–and in no time we’re in the maelstrom. Slowing it down requires grounding ourselves through the actions associated with each step; pursuing them consciously and deliberately keeps one from being swept up in the current and overwhelmed.

On the 24th we may not be able to help ourselves; our ambitions and desires are overblown, we’re prone to Self-indulgence and speaking thoughtlessly, and all of it happens as we simply look for a way to feel empowered. We suffer from both a too-narrow Self-focus and a sense that to uphold standards is to kiss opportunity good-bye–not so. The best approach is one that shows restraint, that respects the rules and structures currently in place, and that puts hard work ahead of short cuts. It’s not glamorous, but what results if we hold back is something truly worth having, that has the bonus of not leaving carnage in our wake.

Today’s word image is someone carrying a bowling ball, who is unable to put it down. What’s your bowling ball? That is, what’s your freakishly heavy burden, voluntarily picked up but from which you now can’t find a way to part? Freedom from the burden only comes with your own effective release, achieved by letting go of the idea that you must first perform expiation.

For the 25th change and how smart it is (or isn’t) is front and center. Like yesterday, we’re separated in some important way from our own creativity, the kind of adaptability that would normally spring from our imagination and allow us to adapt to circumstances in unique and productive ways; we are instead stuck thinking about how we can wrestle desire, fanciful or unrealistic ideas, and inevitable evolution into some shape we can handle, and with luck, benefit from. Thinking about what to do is healthy–it may be the only way we’ll get any purchase on events–but we may be too shy of the past to see the benefits of lessons learned and relationships left behind, and we may be too dependent on opportunities conforming to us to realize the only real opportunities we’ll get are those that will demand we conform to them.

Today’s word image is thirst. Though it may seem like an appetite, it’s actually a genuine need. What are you mistaking as greedy that’s really about survival?

The 26th will be covered in the Solar eclipse post to follow.

Thinking is a bit destructive on the 27th, in spite of the way, if we focus on the possible profits in every situation, we’ll see how the past has taught us to get the most from the present. Focus, in fact, aligns with the creative essence and makes a fount for those who home in. Just like yesterday, be ready to accommodate opportunity and ambition fulfillment with what they call for, rather than with how you want them to be.

'Hirsche im Winterwald' (Deer in a Winter Forest), A. Thiele 1874 {{PD}}

‘Hirsche im Winterwald’ (Deer in a Winter Forest), A. Thiele 1874 {{PD}}

Today’s word image is a deer in the forest, pausing to listen. We should, too, as something may be sneaking up on us–and if we’re still, we’ll hear the rustle and snap as it makes its way toward us.

For the 28th we may question or even reject our own highest values in direct proportion to how empowered we feel; the more empowered, the more likely we are to think our own standards can be safely bent or broken. Not so. Note, too, that instincts aren’t trustworthy at this time; the ‘blind spot’ almost guarantees a screw up, so go instead with the tangible and the measurable, but everything else set aside for later.

Today’s word image is a folding knife with a beautiful antler handle. Do you believe that utilitarian things should be beautiful? If so, do you follow this precept in what you buy, invest in, create, and surround yourself with? If not, is it because you consign different things to different categories, perhaps believing that the useful must be modest or plain, without using resources unnecessarily in creating them? Do you object to the use of animal products in making the knife, and if so, is this posturing or do you follow through in all areas of your own ‘consumption life’? Do you think beauty (and so Art) is frivolous? And if you do, how much of a dissonance does this create in you when you see and respond to a work of Art?

On the 1st of March Creativity Reigns–but will that be a creative urge that translates into manifestations of ideas and inspirations, or into spinning deceit, illusion, or the entanglement of confusion in your approach and responses? There’s a genuine possibility that we won’t be able to tell the difference–so do your best to find a concrete outlet for the creative spark–that way you can easily see the result.

Strength and power are vital and easily accessed, especially via the anima and its related energies: receptivity, being as a state of action, nurture, acceptance. Independent thinking aligned with one’s highest values brings opportunity and a chance for ambition realization–so make the most of this.

Vincent van Gogh - 'The Parsonage Garden at Nuenen in Winter' 1883 {{PD}}

Vincent van Gogh – ‘The Parsonage Garden at Nuenen in Winter’ 1883 {{PD}}

Word image for the 1st is an old tree, uprooted by a gentle wind. That’s not possible, is it? It is if the tree’s roots died months ago from drought. What matter that feels established and permanent, venerable and sturdy, is already for all real purposes dead?

The 2nd we focus on perfection of the Jupiter-Uranus opposition. This creates a kind of solid fulcrum, hard as bone, off which other energies will swing, bounce, hinge, or hang. It’s a dynamic Cardinal connection that bisects the flat chart and connects for the individual both the Houses across which it stretches (Aries and Libra) and the Houses these two planets rule (those holding Sagittarius and Aquarius). In the most general terms, it’s likely to create unexpected opportunity or a chance event that stirs concepts surrounding the individual’s position within ‘the group’, as well as the relationship to ‘the facts’ and including a ‘reliability factor’ (or unreliability factor, as the case may be)–and spreads out from there via the other aspects in play and the way this opposition connects with the nativity of each person.

The atmosphere surrounding the Cardinal opposition is one of sudden events triggered, fortuitous or calamitous, and promises thinking too focused on power acquisition or on getting others to do as we say, which ends up sabotaging our own actions and wants, and drawing on factors from the past, most of which need to stay there. It just doesn’t pay to take matters into our own hands. Allow serendipity to do the heavy lifting. Though actions seems called for, the key may be to allow the facts and opportunities to surface and be made evident on their own.

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