Monday, October 29, 2007

Patriotism

Patriotism, astrologer C.E.O. Carter told us, in his Enclyclopedia of Psychological Astrology, is "a Cancerian trait and most patriots have this sign prominent". I'm not sure that works for me - I have natal Cancer rising, but don't consider myself patriotic - except in regard to the Earth.

He goes on to say "But many who are so called, and who perhaps have even performed deeds of great value to their country, have been actuated by such motives as duty (Saturn), resistance to aggression (Mars) or love of freedom (Jupiter or Uranus). Astrology enables true patriotism to be detected, and at the same time, although few national horoscopes are obtainable, it may usually be judged that a person who has many planets strong in a certain sign will do well for himself when in a country ruled by that sign, and, in turn, may benefit the country."

A variety of astrological charts are used by astrologers to represent the birth of the USA, rising signs differ, but I think that the Sun always lies in the sign of Cancer. I'm not a fan of astrological charts for countries. I feel that a chart set up for an inanimate entity describes a moment in time - nothing more, a moment whose "imprint" has no flesh and blood upon which to imprint itself (except of course upon babies born at that precise moment). I'm not a professional astrologer though, and am probably wrong. Assuming that I am wrong, if the USA's Sun sign is Cancer, and C.E.O Carter was right about the sign of Cancer being related to patriotism, then it's hardly surprising that the USA has always inspired its citizens with great patriotism.

What worries me a lot, as an alien here, is that a good proportion of people in the USA can see no wrong in their country. They see this as patriotism. There's also, thankfully, a growing group of more enlightened folk who see things as they actually are, accept that there are faults, and work towards change and progress. In my book, these are the true patriots.

Last week, at a local concert, a singer (well known country star) performed a self-penned song of praise for America and Americans, written after he'd felt outrage about a news article seen while doing a gig in the north-east. The article in question had criticised current conditions in the USA, and the US administration. At the end of the song the whole audience stood and cheered. If that song had been in protest about the war in Iraq, or likely bombing of Iran by the US, or about the poor in this country who have no social welfare safety net, or the children and families without access to health care.......or about what we are doing to the planet....or.....well, you get my drift....I'd have been on my feet cheering louder than anybody. It wasn't. I sat with my head bowed, feeling deeply disturbed.

When "America the Beautiful" was sung though, earlier the same evening, I had applauded along with everyone else, because the land is amazingly beautiful, it would be hard not to fall in love with certain parts of it.

C.E.O. Carter's assessment of patriotism may have been correct for his own time, and for his own country (Britain). We now live in different times, are considering a different country, with different needs. I'd say the astrological signature for patriotism nowadays would have to include some good Mercury and/or Virgo aspects to enable clear, critical thinking, and a little bit of forward-looking Uranus/Aquarius to enable us as citizens of the world, rather than of any particular country.

I wish America could see itself as part of the wider world instead of a large self-contained world of its own - best of all worlds, which can do no wrong. The plea "God Bless America", to my ears is all wrong! "God Bless the World" is the way forward now, the only way, in fact. If the sensation or emotion we call patriotism were to be be re-jigged, re-aligned to encompass the planet and all its peoples, we might see a flicker of hope for the future of this sad old world.

"The love of one's country is a splendid thing. But why should love stop at the border?" (Pablo Casals)

Blogger descends from soapbox.

5 comments:

anyjazz said...

Whether it is called “Patriotism” or something else, it seems there must be some common thread that holds a nation or macro community together. Whether it is a common goal, a common pride or a common defense, there is a place for some element to create a bond. In a country the size of America, “patriotism” seems the simplest way to give people a common thread. There are simply too many religions, cults, languages, customs, races, climates and cultures in America to find much of a common thread in any of these.

There must be some bonding thread. In times of national crisis, there must be something that sets a people together as an entity. Humans as a whole seem to function best when there is a strength and unity of numbers.

Abraham Lincoln who was most fearful of some states separating from the Union said, “A house divided against itself cannot stand.” But Mr. Lincoln makes no allusion to blindly following the current leadership. He speaks of cultivating and maintaining a common bond that will sustain a nation.

Current leadership appears to say the opposite with phrasing like “if you are not with me you are against me.”

Today, easily accessible transportation and communication have drawn close the people of once distant countries. Nations must become neighbors with a common thread of world patriotism.

Twilight said...

Yes, Anyjazz, I appreciate your point about a vast country like the USA needing some sense of community.

What I find worrying is the inability by some elments of society to see any wrong in what goes on in their country or in their name. The "my country right or wrong" attitude. What they see as loyalty is just lack of critical thinking in my book.

I agree 100% with your last paragraph.

The Next President of The United States said...

As with so many statements people quote as support for the argument, "my country right or wrong" is only part of the content from the original quote by Carl Schurz, who was a German revolutionary, a Union Army general in the Civil War, a Sec. of the Interior after the war and a 19th century reformer.

The full quote: "Our country right or wrong. When right, to be kept right; when wrong, to be put right." Kinda puts a different slant on image the super-patriots like to conjure up, doesn't it?

Schurz is actually an interesting fellow, whose thoughts on Americanism aren't anything like those of some who constantly misuse his quote.

Twilight said...

I didn't know that - thanks TNPOTUS.

The sad thing is, though, even if 'they' managed to quote the whole quotation accurately, 'they' still wouldn't recognise if and when their country was "in the wrong". Blind, blinkered and brainwashed - I doubt there's any cure for it. :-(

Wisewebwoman said...

Funny this, T.
When I hear "God Bless America" I think of "Zeig Heil!"
It is so insular, so "I'm alright, Jack!" when it so clearly isn't to outsiders. I don't see God blessing America or anywhere else for that matter.
XO
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