Aquarium Age

The Aquarium Age: April 12-18, 2017

By Ralfee Finn

Daily life under the Trump regime continues to lay bare the dark shadows of the collective unconscious—it’s as if the collective aggregation of what Buddhists call the fundamental ignorance of the true nature of reality is manifest through each and every thought, word and deed that emanates from Washington DC, which increasingly resembles Mordor. This fundamental ignorance is defined by Buddhists as the inability to recognize the ultimate interconnectedness and interdependence of life. Under the influence of the Trump regime, every appointment, every edict, every reactive response defiantly delineates the separation of self and others. No one is ecologically united—from humans to animals to minerals to plants to water to air (and I’m sure this regime would include the solar system if that were possible)—no aspect of life is left untouched by the grasping greed of this group of despots so intoxicated by their power, so determined to cause harm to others that they do not even consider the detrimental consequences of their actions to their offspring. Left unchecked, this regime is certain to insure the extinction of their own children.

The actual consequences of their defiance—the rise in hate crimes and other forms of violence that are causing grave harm to others, as well as the potential consequences of their hubris and its inevitable harm to Planet Earth—grow increasingly hard to witness and endure. I know I am not the only one who feels intensity of the times. Too many days I feel as if I am living in a bad dream or a surreal alternate universe, a universe that makes absolutely no sense because its values are so blatantly self-destructive. It’s just not possible for me to imagine that millions upon millions upon millions of people support such unnecessary violence. I’ve never been able to wrap my head around the disconnect between pro-lifers and the consistent neglect and abuse of children by those very same people. But the realization of just how many people actually consent to the brutal cruelty of their fellow humans has knocked me on my idealistic ass—and I am still recovering from the blow.

From a Buddhist perspective, I realize this is samsara, the realm or dimension of suffering. I get it…and I know that karma is exact. But from a human perspective, the intensification of suffering put into motion by the eruption and manifestation of such mendacious ignorance is simply hard to take. I know I am not alone in this state. I also know I am not alone in feeling helpless to make a meaningful difference. And I also know that I must do my best to try to contribute to the wellbeing of others.

The extent to which the Trump regime has triggered the physical, emotional, psychological, and spiritual chaos that so many are currently experiencing cannot be easily explained away by the stars. As I often write on these pages, astrology is only one way of understanding the human condition. It is a powerful and enduring system for many reasons, not the least of which is that it places our small human story in the context of a much larger ongoing story that is beyond the limits of the human mind to fully comprehend. Nevertheless, it was possible to predict that the issues of social justice—race, gender, religion, and financial equality—would rise to the surface of our collective skin. And they have. So much so that they can no longer be denied. But it was not possible to predict that the anomaly of Trump would so clearly illuminate the shadows of those issues—bigotry, misogyny, hatred, and greed. It was also not possible to predict the poisonous effect of so many united against themselves; it’s still impossible for me to believe that so much poison could be embraced by so many. That’s the place I keep revisiting. That’s the place of my deepest personal work.

The good news is that each day more and more people are waking up to the need to participate in finding the remedies and antidotes to the toxicity of our current state of social disintegration. No one who is awake is complacent about what is occurring. Those who understand the true nature of reality—that we are all absolutely connected—are actively participating in whatever ways they can. Where and how to participate is the biggest question because it is so easy to feel overwhelmed by all there is to do—the distress of the overwhelming need of so many can be debilitating. My sense of urgency grows daily because each day I am reminded that every aspect of life hangs in the balance. Yet I am also reminded that this is a creative crisis—those of us who are awake can move into positive action simply by listening to our hearts and acting on that wisdom. We can give more, share more, care more, and through those efforts continue to put the needs of the many before the needs of the one. The idea that anything exists independently is an artifact of archaic thinking. And you don’t have to be a Buddhist to know this. Anyone who watched Star Trek—Democrat, Republican or Alien—understands this fundamental truth.

The astrology this week is similar to last week: It’s a bumpy ride of planetary motion. Mercury Retrograde and Saturn Retrograde just began and both retrograde cycles invite a review of the recent past. This is in conflict with Venus Direct, which begins on April 15, and as that forward motion collides with the power of the double retrogrades, the dissonance of these disparate daily rhythms is sure to cause more than a few moments of frustration.

The problem of the week is handling the power of the Sun/Uranus conjunction, in Aries, a combustible configuration that sends power surges through freedom fighters everywhere. It signifies revolution. This is a fundamentally creative force, and when it is filtered through Aries, it is generally seen as the power of the individual to make a difference. Transform the Aries fixation on one self, with all its self-ish interests, into a multidimensional self in service to the interconnectedness of all selves and you will access a way to handle all the fire and passion this conjunction signifies. Be the one who dedicates her power to the many. Be the one, free from the ignorance of the true nature of reality, the one who knows that no-one and no-thing exist separately, and you will be the one who serves the greater good of all sentient beings.

Sun Bursts: If you know your Ascendant and/or your Moon Sign, read that too.

Aries March 21-April 19
Put aside personal prejudice and rather than snipe at others, give them the benefit of the doubt. It’s actually quite rare to have an enemy whose intention is to cause you harm. It may look as if someone doesn’t like you, but really, most people are simply doing their best to make sure life works—for them. Rather than reacting negatively, respond compassionately: Listen closely and you’ll discover that even when someone is being critical of you, that person is telling you what she needs to be happy.

Taurus April 20-May 20
I had an old friend who used to say the only thing to free yourself from are the shackles of your own mind—opinions, fantasies and belief systems that no longer serve. This is your moment to do just that. You’ve spent a long time ruminating over what works and now is the time to discard what doesn’t. You don’t have to throw out everything, but you do have to pay close attention to what you can’t quite part with—those are the thought forms that are likely to cause the most damage because they are the most habitual.

Gemini May 21-June 21
Let’s face it: You are the problem solver, because even if you don’t know the answer you can usually figure out how to help someone find the necessary information. The good news about this superpower is that you are in demand. The bad news is that you hardly have time for yourself. No matter how busy, tired or discombobulated you may be, spend a moment or two contemplating how you can practice better self-care. This is not about indulging hedonistic behavior. This is about learning to value your gifts and talents.

Cancer June 22-July 22
You can gnash your teeth in frustration or you can take a deep breath and continue moving forward but at a very different pace than you previously anticipated. This recalibration won’t be easy, but despite several unforeseen obstacles, it’s still possible to make progress. It will get easier and easier as you adjust to the new rhythm. So be gentle with yourself and others as you attempt to make the necessary adjustments. And while you may long for the old routine, the new one has greater potential.

Leo July 23-August 22
You could wind up repeating yourself one too many times, and while that might be annoying, it could also be humorous, especially if you allow your funny bone to handle any obstacles or difficulties. Laughter is always the best antidote for stress. Just be careful not to mistake a serious situation for a farce. I realize this sounds like conflicting advice, but you’ll need to keep your wits about you as a certain set of circumstances unfolds. Don’t worry—this is an exercise in discernment, and you’re learning what to pay attention to and what to ignore.

Virgo August 23-September 22
While it doesn’t seem possible, it is probable that even more startling plot twists are likely to shift your day-to-day routines. Yes…there have already been enough changes to last a lifetime, but one of your strong suits is the ability to quickly adapt to new information or a new environment. Rely on that strength to guide you through this next round. Be willing to make the time to replenish your reserves. Transformation, even when it’s only about a state of mind, is hard work that requires diligent self-care.

Libra September 23-October 22
Consider the next couple of weeks the emotional equivalent of an electrical panel—the place that delineates how the power connects and where the current travels through the system. It’s the go-to place when the power goes out, but more frequently, it’s the place to reset a breaker that turns a specific point of power back on. Notice where you may have blown an emotional fuse, and then do what’s necessary to rewire that part of your emotional system. Don’t worry; the system still works—it just needs a little attention.

Scorpio October 23-November 21
Just when you thought the entire episode was behind you, there seem to be a few more details to deal with. Rather than resent this review, embrace it, even if it requires tedious attention to detail. I’m not suggesting that you’ve been careless or that you’ve overlooked significant factors. I’m merely advising you to make the most of this combined retrograde by exploiting its emphasis on reexamining projects and plans already in motion. Nothing is lost—not even time—when you deepen your awareness in the present moment.

Sagittarius November 22-December 21
It’s important to rely on your innate optimism—you need it and so does your immediate cohort of friends, family, co-workers, and all the other people who are touched by your enthusiasm for life. This isn’t about co-dependence or putting aside your true feelings—authenticity is a must. It’s possible to be optimistic in the midst of difficulty—actually, it’s necessary if you want to make it through. So even if you’re unsure of how to navigate these waters, trust your instincts and you’ll do fine.

December 22-January 19
You’re questioning how to spend your energy wisely, and while it looks as if you only have two options—home or work—there are other choices. Rather than surrender to an either/or attitude, explore the possibilities. Think about what you would like to express creatively or the places you would like to visit; perhaps there are subjects you want to study or teach. The only obstacle inhibiting your progress is a belief that hard work is the only way. Consider that sometimes fun yields better results than labor.

Aquarius January 20-February 18
The focus is still on all those things you not only want to say but all those things you need to say because you intuitively know that telling the truth will clear the air and push the reset button. Great…have at it. And while I don’t have to remind you, I will anyway: Things said in the heat of the moment sometimes have a shelf life that is the equivalent of the half-life of Uranium. Be true to yourself, but also do your best to cause no additional harm—there will be other, less volatile opportunities to speak your truth.

Pisces February 19-March 20
Most of us live in a culture that supports the notion that material possessions are the true measurement of personal success—clothes, cars, houses, jewels, or whatever else we collect to bolster our sense of value. Most spiritual traditions remind us that we can’t take our ‘gold’ with us, yet we still strive almost to our last breath to accumulate wealth. (Maybe it’s too many Egyptian or Mayan past lives bleeding through.) Imagine measuring your true value by the good you do in the world. That would change the standard of self-worth—and that would change everything, wouldn’t it?

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This article was originally published on April 13, 2017.