Tuesday, January 24, 2017

Seasonally Astrological

Someone once told me that he'd noticed that all his children, and everyone he'd had close relationships with (not including other blood relatives) had birthdays in the first half of the year, as he did himself.

More than once I've tossed an idea around, in my head, that it would be possible to create a plausible secondary, and simpler, zodiac based on the broad concept of seasonal astrology, with some additional detail culled from standard tropical astrology. The seasonal zodiac would rely primarily on the four angles, ascendant/descendant & midheaven/nadir. Fewer zodiac signs created by fusion of two or more of the traditional signs might create the seasonal zodiac circle. But, then again, maybe this is just my own Aquarius Sun trying to cause chaos!

Positions and aspects between Sun, Moon, Mercury, Venus, Mars, Jupiter and Saturn are thought by astrologers to have varying levels of reflection in our individual personality traits. The outer and slower-moving planets, Uranus, Neptune and Pluto are thought to connect more to generations, unless closely linked to one of the faster-moving planets natally, or in transit.

Quite often at least six of the seven faster-moving bodies (Moon is excluded because of its even faster motion) lie within one half of the zodiac circle. Mercury and Venus, for example are never further from the Sun than the space of two signs, often less than that. When planetary emphasis is concentrated in roughly half of the zodiac signs, in theory personality traits of people born with Sun among the involved signs are likely to have more broad compatibility with each other than with people born in the other half of the zodiac. I say "broad", because other complications and considerations are involved - rising signs and Moon position among them. This idea might be relevant to the experience of the guy mentioned above, whose children and others with whom he'd had close relationships had birthdays in the first half of the year.

I took a look at my own natal chart, and, stripping away the outer planets and Chiron the faster planets and Moon all lie between Aries and 28 degrees Scorpio. So, though I usually say I have a "splash" chart, that is only due to the generational planets. I'm a Winter-to-Spring person.

All this relates only to the northern hemisphere. What about people born in the southern hemisphere? There'd be a different seasonal zodiac for them.

Terence Guardino in "The Seasons of Astrology" explained his own version.

From Amazon's page on the book
The Seasons of Astrology: How Your Biological Clock is the Link to Your Sun Sign Personality explains how the apparent rising and setting of the sun influences our personalities as well as the seasons. The amount of light versus darkness during the month one is born begins to imprint the personality of each sign. The amount of light versus darkness also begins to imprint each of our individual biological clocks during infancy.

The light relates to our personal ego needs as separate individuals needing to be expressed out into the world. The sun signs born with equal light and darkness are Aries and Libra but the signs with more light during the day than darkness are Taurus, Gemini, Cancer, Leo and Virgo as they strive to be noticed. The dark relates to all the collective needs of the group rather than the individual. The dark represents society, government, laws, organized religion and community. The signs with more darkness than light when born focuses their attention more on community rather than the individual are Scorpio, Sagittarius, Capricorn, Aquarius and Pisces.

Capricorn begins at the Winter Solstice when the day has the shortest amount of light. Thus Capricorns are more inclined to pull inward to feel safe and be more serious. Aquarius begins to have a little more light and 'lightness' but still with long winter nights. Aries begins the Spring Equinox with an equal balance of daylight and darkness but the next sign Taurus has a bit more light during the day giving more confidence to express itself in the world and so forth with each sign until you arrive at Scorpio when there is more darkness than light. Scorpio is known for being mysterious, secretive, hard to get to know but also insightful and powerful.

Monday, January 23, 2017

Music Monday ~ "Django"

A musical birthday today: "Django" Reinhardt's, he was born on 23 January, 1910, died in 1953.

A violinist first, guitarist later, Jean Baptiste "Django" Reinhardt grew up in a gypsy camp near Paris where he absorbed the gypsy strain into his music. A disastrous caravan fire in 1928 badly burned his left hand, depriving him of the use of the fourth and fifth fingers, but the resourceful Reinhardt figured out a novel fingering system to get around the problem that probably accounts for some of the originality of his style.

A free-spirited gypsy, Reinhardt wasn't the most reliable person in the world, frequently wandering off into the countryside on a whim. Yet Reinhardt came up with a unique way of propelling the humble acoustic guitar into the front line of a jazz combo in the days before amplification became widespread. He would spin joyous, arcing, marvelously inflected solos above the thrumming base of two rhythm guitars and a bass, with Stephane Grappelli's elegantly gliding violin serving as the perfect foil. Although he could not read music, with Grappelli and on his own, Reinhardt composed several highly original tunes.
(See allmusic.com)

See also my 2007 post : Stephane Grappelli and Django Reinhardt - A Magical but Unlikely Pair of Aquarians


Django Reinhardt, born on 23 January 1910 in Liberchies, Pont-à-Celles, Belgium, at 10:00 PM according to Astrodatabank, with a "B" rating - not 100% reliable but it'll suffice for this purpose.

Moon conjunct creative Neptune was in Moon's rulership sign Cancer. Eccentric Uranus was in Capricorn, oppposite Moon/Neptune, and just out of range to be considered conjunct Sun in Aquarius. So Django had near enough a classic planetary lineup for a jazz artist - creative eccentricity brought to earth sufficiently to ensure a skilled outlet. Venus, the musical planet is tightly sextile (helpful aspect) Mars in Taurus, reflecting his dynamic musical style.

There's a Grand Cross in his natal chart linking Neptune, Uranus, Saturn and Jupiter, this configuration usually signifies some kind of ongoing inner conflict, possibly manifesting in Django's case as his unreliability and tendency to be unpredictable.

Here with The Hot Club of France:

Below, one of Django's own compositions Nuages (Clouds). The person who uploaded this video at YouTube wrote:
This was done just weeks before he died.
I recall the original liner notes, written by Charles Delauney ( a friend of D.R) stating that there was a "certain ennui about the session" ..a sadness and premonition that Django had that he didn't have long. Delauney stated that it was the most emotional version of "Nuages" ever done.

Saturday, January 21, 2017

Saturday & Sundry Thoughts on Blogging

What am I doing here, blogging still in mainly empty halls? Am I trying to re-create a Tinkerbell (or Tinkerb-log) Effect keeping alive the belief in blogging by... clapping blogging?

As long ago as 2009 I was lamenting the decline in personal blogs; seven years down the road and, though my own blog, now over 10 years old, is limping along and lonely, many more have gone to the bloggy internet graveyard to rest in peace. In allegorical terms I guess one could say there has been an ever-widening pandemic - of blog flu - better known as Facebookitis, with side effects known as Twittering or tweeting.

In 2009 I wrote, among other things:
"...Perhaps blogging, as practiced by The Great Unwashed, has now passed its peak. Each new internet activity tends to do so with increasing rapidity these days. Message boards, though not completely extinct yet, are much less used than they were a few years ago. Blogs aren't likely ever to disappear completely either, but the number of small, personal blogs is certain to shrink in future, with other enticing options now available.

Facebook and Twitter have been upstaging blogs to some extent. Internet communication is evolving ever more rapidly as equipment becomes slicker and possibilities more exciting and inviting. Bloggers, too, are evolving, having honed their skills over two or three years, they may be feeling now that it's appropriate to post less frequently in order to maintain quality level, or so as to leave time for newer interests. "

Among a number of comments (yes this blog did, once upon a time, have commenters!) was one from my husband "anyjazz":
...This is a thoughtful observation on the direction of blogging and the web in general. I don’t know the culprit either but I bet it is a combination of several elements.

The original ambition wanes when realization sets in that having something pithy or indeed anything to say on a regular basis is really difficult. We are faced with the fact that we are not as deep, not as multidimensional, not as funny, as we originally fantasized; what we say is somehow not as interesting to every one else as it is to ourselves.

The shorter moment-to-moment systems have a broad appeal now. It is the convenient, instantly gratifying, worries free, one shot, conversational, language-crunching, grammatical disasters of Twitter, Face Book, texting, et al, that seem to be emerging as the popular communications mode. Communicate more, think less.

Maybe there is some good in everything. Granted, it is hard to see here. With humanity seemingly headed for disasters on several levels, (climate, religious and/or ethnic wars, pandemic disease, grand-scale greed and political implosion, for just a few examples) perhaps we are experiencing close-up an evolutional movement so grand we don’t recognize it.

The key to all of our human foibles is communication. If not the total solution, communication is at least the first step in any solution. Think of solving any problem, from vacation schedules at work to saber-rattling between continents that can be sorted out without communication.

Perhaps we are headed for a communications level heretofore unimagined in our world.
Another, from old blog friend from early days, Anthony North:
I think a major problem is people are realising what hard work it can be building up a readership on a blog. Social networks seem to offer a faster growth of readership. I think the future should be a merging of website, blog and social network, thus satisfying a whole package in one.
Another blog friend, Ron Southern, who has since died wrote, with regard to encroaching Facebookers:
Will it be as hazardous as a shiny black Cadillac going North moving over into my southbound lane? I just hate it when that happens......most writers in the world burn out after a while. Only "the great authors" want to die with a pen in their hand or their fingers on the keyboard! And, lately, I'm not so sure about them!!!

From Sparrow Chat blogger RJ Adams (link in sidebar) occasional commenter in 2009, and still in 2017; he and Mrs RJ have since "upped sticks" from the USA and moved to France. In 2009 he wrote:
I'm guilty of this myself, I'm afraid. Sparrow Chat is nowhere near so prolific as it used to be. Partly, because the demise of George W Bush and his not-so-merry band left a vacuum - the arrival of a sane US President being less newsworthy, even if the the rest of government still stinks to high heaven - but mainly due to other interests crowding out the blog writing. I've been very busy of late on other projects and keep promising myself I'll return to SC as soon as the pressure is off. Unfortunately, it never does. Meanwhile, I'm truly attempting to maintain at least one post per week.

And from the gals, in 2009, for whom I sadly have no photographs:

Elsa (astrologer and astrology blogger (link in sidebar). Elsa was first to welcome me to astrology blogging, back in 2006):
I've noticed the same thing. I chock it up to harder times myself. I think we are going to be paying for content more and more, going forward.

Tuikku said...
I have a history related blog I haven't been updating for months. Life has been hectic, true. Also, I've had Saturn on my Mercury, so expressing my ideas in writing hasn't been that easy. I'm still on someone's blogroll though, so I guess I should make an effort to start writing again.

Wise Webwoman (of The Other Side of Sixty blog - link in sidebar) wrote:
I haven't noticed this, T, maybe my blog buds are sticking to the knitting. I did drop a couple in the last few months, not updated since May in both cases. I do write them to see how they are but never a response....

From Jennifer:
I loathe Twitter. Really, being able to write one sentence at a time is THAT FABULOUS? Really really? I feel like people are going to lose their interest/ability to write anything longer and thoughtful, and it pisses me off.

So...as 2017 continues to unfold, what will I do with Learning Curve on the Ecliptic? Carry on carrying on, or put the blog to sleep forever? Tinkerbell survived, maybe this blog, and a few others still extant, can survive too. I'll continue logging on and blogging on...until I don't.

Friday, January 20, 2017

Arty Farty Friday ~ Mark Ryden and his accidentally appropriate painting for today

Mark Ryden, an artist/illustrator whose birthday it is today - born 20 January 1963, created a piece of artwork eerily appropriate to THIS 20 January, inauguration day of Donald Trump as President of the USA. Here it is, titled The Pumpkin President - I doubt Mr Ryden had The Donald in mind when painting this in 1998 though.

A little about the artist from e-zine in a piece by S. Rupert: The Artwork of Mark Ryden

Mark Ryden's artwork has been described as captivating and disconcerting, mysterious and enthralling, unsettling, mystical, cuddly and frightening all at once.

Ryden has been referred to as the king of the Pop Surrealism movement. Mixing joyful child-like imagery with disconcerting pieces of body parts or bizarre sights in nature, forming a strange mixture of children's book images and meat or blood. Moved by alchemy, metaphysics, science, and philosophy and attracted to ancient cryptic symbols and mystical imagery, Mark Ryden produces incredible storybook artworks which are stunning yet disturbing.

Ryden's artwork mixes saccharine-sweet, cartoon-like characters with a detailed fullness and a eerie combination of numerology, little girls, meat, Catholic and Buddhist symbolism, and carnivalesque Americana. fascinated by things that take you back to memories from childhood, Mark Ryden frequently incorporates toys, as well as scenes of bunnies, children, clowns, and ice cream trucks, which just happen to be united with skulls and porterhouse steaks............

Astrologically, Mark Ryden has Sun at 00 Aquarius, conjunct Mercury at 29 Capricorn; Saturn is at 12 Aquarius. A mix of the eccentric and unexpected with traditional underpinnings then - and that fits.

Natal Venus, planet of the arts in Sagittarius sextiles Saturn and squares Jupiter in Pisces, also semi-sextiles Neptune in Scorpio. I'd say this is the source of the unsettling side of Ryden's artwork - the link to Neptune in Scorpio draws in a touch of the macabre! Saturn's square to Jupiter in Pisces inhibits any unadulterated softness/sweetness which might otherwise have been more apparent. Natal Moon could be in either Sagittarius or late Scorpio, depending on exact time of birth - I'd bet on Scorpio!

Video showing some of Mark Ryden's artwork:

Thursday, January 19, 2017

In Lighter Vein

Gahan Wilson (born February 18, 1930) is an American author, cartoonist and illustrator known for his cartoons depicting horror-fantasy situations. Many people feel that we in the USA are about to come face to face with the horror-fantasy to top all horror-fantasies - a Donald Trump presidency. I feel they're being a tad hyperbolic, better to simply watch and wait - calmly - but that's just from my perspective as a comparative newcomer: stranger in a (very) strange land.

Gahan Wilson is now coming up to 87 years old, and likely no longer cartooning regularly. A look through some of his excellent work via Google Image threw up a few pieces which could easily be adapted to cover current levels of weird. How about these? My own captions are added, in red.

 President Trump's first appointment with the White House barber.

 The Learning Curve

President Trump studies the book "Presidency for Dummies"

After a period of  humbling, President Trump re-names his Tower

Wednesday, January 18, 2017

Inauguration & Days to Come

One of the best, nicely balanced astrological overviews of what we might expect from coming weeks and months regarding our President-to-be, is :

President Trump’s First 100 Days
by Pat Paquette at The Mountain Astrologer.

What I noticed, when looking at the chart for 20 January, Inauguration Day: Sun is at 00 Aquarius and will be conjunct Fixed Star Tarazed part of Constellation Aquila - The Eagle.

Bearing in mind that the Inauguration chart is not Trump's birth chart, but simply a chart indicating the "atmosphere" surrounding the day's events:

From Skyscript
In classical myth the eagle was the bird of Zeus who returned his master's thunderbolts and carried to him the souls of heroes. In The Royal Art of Astrology, Robert Eisler explains how, at the funerals of' Roman emperors, an eagle was lightly fastened to the top of the pyre so that as soon as the fire had singed its fetters, it would break free of its bonds and fly away - apparently bearing aloft the soul of the departed. The location of Aquila by the side of Aquarius, and its flight across the Milky Way was thus said by some classical authors to represent the ascension of Ganymede (identified with Aquarius) to Zeus. Modern scholars prefer the theory that this constellation's name was assigned when it was near the summer solstice - the bird of greatest elevation being chosen to assume the symbolism of the summit of the Sun.

The imagery of the eagle has always been identified with the qualities of strength, courage, nobility and dignity, which accords with Ptolemy's belief that its stars are of the nature of Mars and Jupiter. Manilius illustrates the Martian trait in his description of those born under its influence:

He that is born in the hour of its rising will grow up bent on spoil and plunder, won even with bloodshed … Yet, should perchance his aggressiveness be enlisted in a noble cause, depravity will turn to virtue, and he will succeed in bringing wars to a conclusion and enriching his country with glorious triumphs.
Seems a reasonably good omen for the day!