Posts Tagged 'work'

Frustrated, much?


To distract myself from pointless seething about how over my job I am right now, I decided to read the weekly ‘scope for my sun sign written by the ever-insightful Astrobarry. And felt immediately vindicated:

“…I’m definitely beginning to sense a ‘fed-up-ness’ emanating from you, Pisces,” he says, “As if you’re wondering when you might catch a break from the tangled web into which you’ve found yourself woven.”

Elsewhere Astrobarry discusses the Saturn-Uranus opposition, which is now apparently within a 5-degree orb and hence officially in force.

An opposition is exactly what is sounds like – on the current astrological chart, Saturn and Uranus are opposite each other. The effects of an opposition are, too, as you would expect – the two energies are literally opposing, or pulling against each other.

To me, Saturn is ‘the rules’ planet – work hard to reap rewards, put in necessary effort, look at the big picture, grow and progress according to lessons learnt. Uranus, however, is more of a maverick energy – calling on us to ring in big changes, bring on the new world, shuck off ritualistic behaviours, defy cultural norms.

With these two energies opposed, is it surprising, then, that I am ever-more-aware of the huge discrepancy between the-world-and-my-life-as-I-want-it and the-motions-through-which-I-am-forced-to-go-through? I guess not.

Of course the impact of this may be heightened or lessened depending on where these energies are ‘hitting’ areas in my own natal chart. Investigating this could well be my next project…

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Photo courtesy of Vox Efx

Moon void of course in Capricorn


The moon is void of course the whole day today, before moving into Aquarius just after 5 this evening.

Which means I shouldn’t even be writing this! It’s best to not to do anything you want to ‘take’ during the VOC moon – signing contracts, big purchases… posting to the web… It is a good time to space out. You may find yourself puttering away aimlessly rather than GTD. It’s hard to focus. During my 9-5 drone life, I have a staff meeting today (groan), and a copyright training session. All very dry and responsible-like. It could be tough going.

Have you been doubting yourself lately? The VOC moon might be just the space-out you need, prior to the airy, detached Aquarian moon this evening (which – after the week we’ve had – I, for one, am pinning more than one hope on. More on that later).

Fifth house fun

I’ve just finished reading a really interesting article by Dana Gerhardt about the fifth house. The first wonderful thing I noticed was her discussion of Lasse Halstrom’s effervescent film Chocolat. The next was the growing sense of enthusiasm I felt for all things fifth house.

It makes sense really. Traditionally known as the house of children, the fifth house speaks to us of childlike enthusiasm. Of fun. Play. Enjoyment. Of the heights we can reach when we do the things we truly enjoy.

Fun? Play? These are things we so often put aside when we ‘grow up’. Either that, or we channel our energies into pastimes that we are taught to think of as ‘fun’ – such as television, shopping and fashion magazines. These are safe pastimes – on an individual level (because we don’t have to push ourselves too hard or think too much), and for our consumer culture (we work all day to earn the money to spend on these things, which in turn means that we have to go to work again the next day). Meantime, studies – including this one, and this one, which was, ironically, televised – suggest that passive activities such as tv-watching actually have a negative impact on our happiness.

Increasingly, we are in fact actively discouraged from engaging in more creative and challenging leisure-time pursuits. Programs like Australian Idol and So You Think You Can Dance show contestants being criticised, even ridiculed, for being less than perfect. In this and so many other ways we are told: If you can’t be the best at something, then why bother? I call it the Cult of Perfection (because I like to make up names for things and capitalise them to make them sound more important – although, Googling this I note I am not the first).

Add to the mix commuting, long work days, office air-conditioning, tiny cubicles – only this week discussed so engagingly by Nick Cernis at www.putthingsoff.com – and it’s the perfect recipe for All Work and No (Real) Play Make Jack & Jill Very Dull (and Unhappy!) People Indeed.

Gerhardt says: ‘People often come to astrology readings because they feel stuck. A question I usually ask clients before the session is “What, if anything, have you been neglecting lately?” The stuck ones usually reply “Myself.” What they typically mean is they aren’t having any 5th house fun. They aren’t taking time off to play. They are being good little girls and boys and doing what’s expected of them’ (my emphasis).

We so often look outside for happiness. To our relationships, our work, our families. To our possessions. Our achievements. ‘If I have this car and this house and this marriage and this job’, we think, ‘Then I’ll be happy.’ Or, ‘Then I will start having fun.’ But when we buy that thing, or achieve that goal, for how long does it alone make us truly happy?

A fantastic way to start thinking constructively about our selves and what truly makes us happy is to look to our fifth house. ‘When you catch yourself having fun, you’ll find your 5th house archetypes indeed are tingling’ Gerhardt says. Steven Forrest, too, says that signs and planets in our fifth house give us a prescription for joy.

But there are no hard and fast rules. ‘You have to experiment,’ Gerhardt says. ‘Especially you must be willing to try things you might otherwise resist. The key to this house is spontaneity – and the willingness to take new risks. Pleasure often arrives in surprising packages. For many people, opening the fifth house chocolate shop starts up a chorus of inner voices: “You shouldn’t! How dare you! Who do you think you are?!”’

And even once you’ve pushed past this fear, success, brilliance and world fame are not assured. You may fall down sometimes. You may be discouraged. ‘There is a journey here’ Gerhardt says. ‘You must learn to pay attention to what you want. And you must be willing to learn from the inevitable mistakes you will make along the way.’

Even on So You Think You Can Dance the ‘losing’ contestants emphasise how much fun they had, how much they enjoy what they do. The joy is in the doing, in that moment of Being. Winning isn’t everything. Being perfect isn’t everything. In fact it is incidental. In real life (as opposed to reality tv) success, brilliance and world fame are not the name of the game. This time, the Real You is what’s important. And the name of the game is Fun.

It can be big fun, or small fun. A great, crazy dream, or something small and pleasant. I’m not advocating that you give up your job or leave your husband or sell all your possessions. But I am suggesting that you take some of that time spent in passive relaxation – tv, shopping, reading junk, mindlessly internet surfing – and direct it towards something uniquely your own.

As a start – have a look at your fifth house and the placements there. To guide you on your way, see what you think of Gerhardt’s full article, and other writing on the topic (I also recommend Steven Forrest’s chapter on the fifth house in The Inner Sky).

And listen to your inner voice. Not the one that automatically says ‘that’s ridiculous’. That is not really you speaking. It is merely your interpretation of what others might say.

Astrology: it’s all about you

In his book The Inner Sky, astrologer Steven Forrest discusses the skewed perception many people have of astrology. ‘To admit, in intelligent company, to being an astrologer has become like admitting you watch soap operas or have a subscription to the National Enquirer‘, he says. Although we’ve come a long way since Forrest’s book was published in 1988, in many circles astrology has yet to shake this association with superstition, cheap showmanship and quackery.

This perception, while by no means universally accepted, affected my ability to consider astrology as a viable life path. At school, the careers I contemplated were all ‘respectable’ – veterinarian, journalist, psychologist and librarian (which is what I eventually became). These and other mainstream occupations were the only options discussed within the school system. And so, while I was passionately interested in astrology, chrystal healing, dream interpretation, aromatherapy and tarot, it never occurred to me to consider any of these as a possible career.

The wonderful Lynn Hayes points to the prevalence of sun sign astrology as one source of astrology’s image problem. Only last week I overheard a comment sparked by the daily horoscope column in the Courier Mail: ‘Don’t you think it’s strange that the exact same thing is going to happen to one twelfth of the population today?’. Of course there is so much more to it than just your sun sign. But many people don’t know that.

Forrest says that another problem is the reliance of some astrologers on on pat traits and rigid stereotypes. He says, ‘one assumption runs like a virus through most astrological writing: people do not change’. And so we take as gospel statements like ‘Taureans are practical’, ‘Virgoans are perfectionists’, ‘Scorpios are sexy’ etc etc.

Like the reliance on sun signs, this is not what astrology is all about. Your future is not predestined. You are not pre-programmed, by your chart or anything else.

I really can’t sum it up any better than Forrest does: ‘Astrology can help us in only three ways. It can vividly portray the happiest life available to us. It can tell us what tools we have available for the job and how best to employ them. And it can warn us in advance about how our lives will look when we are getting off the mark. From that point on, we must affirm that all choices lie in our own hands and that no planet or sign ever preordains a specific fate’.