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Jolinda “Josi” Case is a Spiritual Counselor who uses Tarot and Astrology (among other tools) as forms of divination. She is an avid and vigorous student of the esoteric. Josi has a great deal of experience in assisting people through major life changes such as death/dying/grief through counseling.

Josi’s main motivation is to empower others by assisting them to connect with and express their most true and authentic self. She also strives to give people the authority to feel comfortable in the pursuit of their personal Spirituality.

Josi’s formal education includes collegiate level degrees in Communications, Business and Psychology. She is also an ordained minister. In her free time (HA!), she writes a weekly column for her local paper (The Greenup Beacon), blogs on her site Shock Therapy and relaxes with her husband (“Ox”), three grown boys, two grandsons and pets (Prince, Mercury and Perseus).
Most recently, Josi has bonded forces with Dixie Vogel of A Fool's Journey to produce a monthly show they call Woo Woo Wonderful. The purpose of the live broadcast is to empower others with knowledge of Spirit and Mysticism.

Monday, November 18, 2013



“I also recall from this period (seven to nine) that I was fond of playing with fire. In our garden there was an old wall built of large blocks of stone, the interstices of which made interesting caves. I used to tend a little fire in one of these caves, with other children helping me; a fire that had to burn forever and therefore had to be constantly maintained by our united efforts, which consisted of gathering the necessary wood. No one but myself was allowed to tend the fire. Others could light other fires in other caves, but these fires were profane and did not concern me. My fire alone was living and had an unmistakable sanctity.” C. G. Jung from his autobiography Memories, Dreams,Reflections.

I found this snippet of information from Jung's autobiography particularly interesting. As soon as I read it, I thought of Vesta. She is the Virgin Goddess of the hearth and is symbolized by the sacred flame. Fire was of utmost importance in Vesta's “time.” In early Rome, the temple of Vesta was the only one to be built with a round shape and covered with a dome to protect the sacred fire from rain. The Vestales (Vestal Virgins) were one of a few full-time clergy positions in Roman religion. They were drawn from the patrician class and had to observe absolute chastity for 30 years. Their job was to maintain the sacred flame. At the time of their appointment they were emancipated from their father's and subsequently swore a vow for the 30 year chastity. If this vow was broken, they were buried alive in the Field of Wickedness. They were not to show excessive personal care, but rather focus on the keeping the sacred flame alive.

In the home, Vesta's importance became even stronger, particularly to women of the household. The heath is where food was prepared. Offerings would be thrown into the fire to seek the future from observing the manner in which it burned. The word “focus” is from the Latin for “hearth” and that draws forth Vesta's importance in our individual charts.

Jung had Vesta conjunct Sun in Leo sitting right on his descendant (Sun in 7th house with Vesta on the other side of his DC in the 6th house). Sun conjunct any heavenly body brings that body's qualities into our own personal identity. His focus and dedication to the fires he created as a child echoes this. The statements, “No one but myself was allowed to tend the fire” and “My fire alone was living and had an unmistakable sanctity” show that part of his identity was Vesta.

Even with Vesta barely in the 6th, it was connected to his 7th house sun. When this “ritual of childhood” began (age 7 in 1882) Vesta would have been transiting his 7th house stellium (Vesta, Sun, Pallas, Juno, Uranus and Ceres) in Leo and passing into Virgo. When he concludes this ritual (age 9) Vesta would have moved all the way to Aquarius passing through Jung's 1st house and opposing that Leo stellium. Not only was this representative of Vesta herself but also of Jung discovering and expressing a part of his own identity.

Identity was at the fore for Jung at the time as he speaks of a large rock that sat outside his “cave.” On the same page (and in future chapters) he discusses how he would perch on the rock for extended periods of time and become confused saying to himself, “I am sitting on top of this stone and it is underneath.” But, after being there for an extended period of time, that statement would change to, “Am I the one who is sitting on the stone, or am I the stone on which he is sitting.” In these early searches for his identity, he was finding it.

Vesta in our charts does represent focus. She is currently in Libra and Jung expresses Vesta's transit through his 7th house (Libra ruled) with the statement “I used to tend a little fire in one of these caves, with other children helping me; a fire that had to burn forever and therefore had to be constantly maintained by our united efforts, which consisted of gathering the necessary wood.” He enlisted partners to help him maintain focus even though he realized that it was his sole responsibility to directly tend to the flame. Vesta through Libra calls for us to do just that. It also calls for a focus upon partnership in general.

It's a circling of the wagons, so to speak. A collaborative focus upon relationships and partnerships in which we work together collectively to maintain a common flame. Libra (and her principles) has become a focus to us at any rate in the recent past with the “battle of the Gods” that is Uranus in Aries, Pluto in Capricorn and Jupiter in Cancer. This t-square of planets has a release valve that purges in Libra affecting our primary relationships and bringing them quickly to the forefront when faster moving bodies (Sun, Moon, Venus, Mars) transits through Libra entering the square. It only makes sense that Vesta would be there now heralding Mars' extended stay in Libra through the end of 2013 into the Spring of 2014. She reinforces the fact that we do, indeed, need one another and should have a type of dedication to or, at the very least, acknowledgment of how our actions affect others and how the actions of others affect ourselves. And, this is “others” in the form of either friend or foe.

On a personal level, she is the place where we find ourselves dedicated and focused upon our personal sacred flame. It is where we find divine inspiration and how we protect such.

My Vesta is in the 4th house conjunct Saturn in Gemini. I am dedicated to protecting my home and family. I'm also focused upon learning and communicating. It is part of my identity as well since both make a nice tight trine with my Sun in Libra. Where do find your focus gifted from Vesta? Do you find that personal planets connected to your Sun speak of a certain part of your identity?

Saturday, November 16, 2013

Full Moon in Taurus November 17, 2013

The Full Moon in Taurus occurs tomorrow (Sunday November 17) at 10:17 AM EST. I've been looking forward to this for awhile. But, at first, I thought it may be something that was going to be rather chaotic given the actions of Venus and the Moon during the lead up.

Now, I'm less inclined to believe that. Venus was rather itchy while she squared Uranus. And, she was quite serious and determined while conjunct Pluto. But, what I was hearing from her is more gentle than vindictive. That was most certainly a relief.

The Moon in Aries hit a conjunction with Uranus and a square with Pluto leading up to this as well. But, there was enough Earth and Water energy in the air to temper that quite a bit on a personal level.

Honestly, I think we are all a bit shell shocked after the eclipses and the perfection of the fourth Uranus /Pluto square and to have Full Moon conjunct Algol to come on the heels of that, it made a lot of people nervous.

I'm sure there were some relationship shake ups and revelations on our way here. I'm sure there were some people who were overly obsessed with what they wanted or overly possessive of what they deemed as “theirs” during the Venus/Pluto conjunction. However, the Taurus Moon brings comfort in the aftermath of that.


Venus had whispered to me that we (as a collective) needed to stop our forward motion and yearning (working toward what we want) long enough to honor and cherish what we currently have. She's working very hard and diligently in Capricorn. She wants to be responsible. But, she doesn't want us to forget why we work diligently and act responsibly. It's for those daily simple pleasures in life that are so easy to take for granted. The solid reliable things that we assume will always be there often do not have homage paid to them as they should. These are the things and relationships that Venus is asking us to take time to cherish because it is really not a given that they will always be there. And, they certainly would be missed should they be taken away from us.

Venus suggests that our values (and simple pleasures) should be cherished, admired and appreciated.

With that, I've decided to create a small Altar to Venus during the Full Moon in Taurus. When I first mentioned this on my Facebook for Shock Therapy (click the link to find me), there were several statements I didn't expect. “How do I do that?” “You are going to have to tell more about Venus.” “I feel like Venus has no connection to me and has passed me over.”

I began to realize that there were many misconceptions about what Venus truly is. Venus is not some overly skinny half naked model. She is not some perverted photoshopped unrealistic looking electronic version of beauty and she is not a Barbie doll. She is not in your face singing about how great she is in bed. She is not loud. She is not pornographic. These things are an appeal to Mars.

Women are finding and learning to express their more masculine qualities such as Mars. I'm not saying this is a bad thing. It's certainly something that needs to emerge and be embraced because there are masculine and feminine qualities in every single one of us regardless of our sex. That fact needs to come out and be balanced between us for numerous reason. But, don't mistake these feminine expressions of Mars for Venus.

Venus is beauty in all it's forms. She is demure. She is graceful. She is courteous and appreciative. She isn't in your face asking you to pay attention. She's waiting for you to notice her. She's waiting for you to see her realness and find something about her that appeals to you in such a way that you are tempted. She's waiting for you to lure her in with compliments and adoration. She is the aphrodisiac.

She is not just physical beauty but beauty that emanates from the inside out. Particularly in Capricorn, she is solid and timeless. Venus is sexual but she is unconcerned with climax. Venus is arousal, foreplay, kisses, romance. She appreciates the beauty within herself and she sees the beauty in others in a way that the media often overlooks.

Sex sells. But, Venus makes life worthy of living.

Like her higher octave Neptune, Venus is compassionate, dreamy, loving, alluring and idealistic. Venus is art. Venus is dance. Venus is alluring movement. Venus is nature and all it's simple pleasures.

However, Venus unappreciated will take her gifts elsewhere so that she is cherished.

Venus is chocolate. Have you ever seen someone gobble up a fine, rich, sweet piece of chocolate in one bite? I have and find it to be blasphemous. Venus is to be savored. Relished. Desired.

Most of what has been fed to you about beauty and matters of Venus is a falsehood. Her principles have been largely forgotten. This is why, at the culmination of this wonderfully Venus ruled Full Moon in Taurus, I suggest paying homage to the Goddess and showing appreciation for the simple yet enduring comforts that she provides.

Your Venus Altar does not need to be elaborate or complicated. Taurus is very “no-fuss.” It could be as simple as a small pink or deep red candle surrounded with pictures of your loved ones. It could include your favorite plush and warm socks that will surround your feet with comfort during the colder winter months. It could be a piece of your favorite chocolate or sweets. It could be a few piece of artwork cherished not for it's technical skill but because it was made for you in love by a small child. It could be your rocks and gemstones—rose quartz, amethyst, moss agate. It can be whatever you appreciate and currently hold dear or representatives of such. What's important is that you recognize these things. And, in the hustle of your day to day life you stop and remember to appreciate them and share them with the people you love.

Embrace your own beauty and stand in it with grace. Acknowledge the beauty you find in others that does so often go overlooked in the shadow of media fostered cosmetics and perversion. Be gentle and kind to yourself. Trade massages with your lover with no rush to get on with the Marsy act of climax. Shower Venus with appreciation and compliments and in turn, she will shower you with sheer bliss.

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Venus in Capricorn Part 2: Fear of Success, Unexpected Change and Obsession

Yesterday I wrote about Venus in Capricorn in conjunction to Pluto and square to Uranus and how it can echo the work we have or have not done during Saturn in Libra (2009-1012). My point with that writing was to show that Saturn's movement is progressive and each lesson builds upon itself.

Whenever a planet is in Capricorn, your 10th house, in aspect to transiting Saturn or your natal Saturn what we get is sometimes a checkpoint in order to gauge where we are in the lesson plan.

All the planets are in this together, you see? Saturn is the disciplinarian. He teaches through restriction and sometimes hardship and suppression. But, he is also the guy who makes the plan.

I have a cousin who has multiple planets in Capricorn. I used to tease her (even before studying Astrology) because she had a five year plan for her five year plan that tied into her 10 and 20 year plan. Capricorn's are Cardinal and they have a tendency to take the lead when it comes to laying out steps toward goals. Aries may rush right in toward a goal without much preparation. Cancer may follow Aries cleaning up behind him and running with a sack lunch (Tupperware filled with Chicken and dumplings and a pint of milk). Libra may lag behind as she gathers everyone else and makes the goal sound enticing convincing all to follow her. But, Capricorn? He's the one who came up with the goal in the first place and is working on laying out the steps to get there and even has started working on a plan for what will occur after the goal is achieved. So, there you have it. Capricorn plans beyond the goal—as if there is no question the goal is going to be achieved. That's pretty important in terms of Saturn.

However, Saturn is also fear. And, a person with Venus in Capricorn or in aspect to Saturn can know exactly what they want and how to get there but actually fear obtaining it—especially if they have not put a plan out there that includes obtaining said “want” or goal and what to do AFTER that.

Getting what you want involves change on some level. When something enters your life whether you want it or not, your life does change. Think Saturn is rock solid? Well, guess what, Saturn is also the traditional ruler of Aquarius--the catalyst for change. Therefore, change becomes a constant and you can't always plan for that, Capricorn. Because sometimes change comes out of nowhere and unexpectedly. There may be times where you have to adjust your five year plan during your five year plan.

Pluto is our personal and collective shadow. Sometimes our shadow operates in ways of which we are not conscious. Shadows are subversive like that. Part of Saturn's work in Scorpio is to uncover some of our shadow activity. We are to recognize it, own it and integrate it. Doesn't mean it's a good idea to act on it. Just know that it is there and a part of us without projecting it onto someone else. Libra (Venus) is an ace at projection. It's one of her favorite pastimes and the Pluto in Libra generation has a tendency to project their shadow on to some mysterious entity often called “they.” Why can't you get you want Pluto in Libra? Because, “they” are doing this, this and this. Uh-huh. It happens. It also happens with Venus in contact with Pluto in other ways (Venus in Scorpio, Venus in aspect to Pluto, Venus in the 8th, Pluto in the 7th, etc.).

Now. Lets pull all this together. Venus/Pluto can project their shadow and blame “them” for not getting what they want. Venus/Saturn can fear getting what they want even if they have made a plan to get it. Change is the only constant and it can come unexpectedly.

This is exactly the set up we have for Venus (Want) square Uranus (Change) in Capricorn (Plan) conjunct Pluto (Shadow).

Let me lay out one possible scenario for you. Maybe you have made a plan to get what you want and when Venus squares Uranus, all of a's here! Wow! Your plan was successful and look at you! You are free (Uranus) to grab it! But, wait a minute, you weren't ready to have it! You don't know what you are going to do next? How are you going to operate with this new thing in your life. Did you just uncover a part of your shadow (Pluto)? Fear of success (Saturn), maybe?

That happens too! As a matter of fact, it's more common than you would think. “But, I want it so badly!” You may think. (Pluto/Venus can become obsessed with what they want—My Precious). However, it's not usually so much what they want that is this the obsession but the desire for it that is so addictive. That means, when they actually get what they want they may not really know what to do with it.

It's OK! All you have to do is look beyond the original plan, recognize that you may have a fear of success and decide what changes you are going to have to make in your life when success or what you want comes. Yeah, that sounds easy. But, overcoming something like a fear of success or obsession with a desire is rarely simple. The first step in accommodating it, though, is owning and facing your fears about it. Then, make a plan to move forward in life incorporating having what you want and living with success. Five year plan for your five year plan Capricorn!

So, what happens if when Venus square Uranus all of a sudden what you thought you wanted bolts. Maybe you had set your sights on something that is unattainable and unrealistic. Or, maybe you have figured out what you want and started going toward it and the closer you get to it you realize...”Oooh, THAT'S close to what I want but THAT ain't it!” You've got to be able to tell the difference between “I'm actually afraid of what I want” or “I know what I want but this is definitely the wrong package.”

For example, lets say you have been working and working on a financial plan. You've got things all set up to get your finances in order. Venus squares Uranus and BAM you have unexpected expenses. Could be your fault. Could be totally unforeseeable but either way your financial plan should be able to accommodate that if you truly want to be successful. Venus square Uranus will bring that fact to the forefront and you are going to have rebirth (Pluto) your plan (Capricorn) in order to get where you want (Venus) to be.

Or, maybe you have been working on a plan for having a successful love life and all of a sudden your potential or current lover bolts (Uranus) during the square. Doesn't mean you don't know what you want. You should have delineated the qualities you desire in a person, right? And, whatever it was surely didn't include someone who would just up and run from you. Right? Looks like what you want...but THAT ain't it! Or maybe the Universe is asking, “Are ya sure? Are ya sure this is what you want?” Either way, the plan gets re-birthed or scrapped all together.

You know, life happens that way. We are happily working along and then swift like lightning, something comes along and upsets our apple cart in one way or another. We have to adjust our plan, re-evaluate our goals and intentions. Then, move forward from there. Change. Happens. Roll with it.

Monday, November 11, 2013

Venus in Capricorn Pt. 1. The Overview

As we are currently floating in Water World, today through tomorrow, I'm being pinged to write about Venus in Capricorn as she inches closer and closer to a square with Uranus in Aries and conjunction with Pluto in Capricorn. She will also sextile all our mess in Scorpio (has already past her sextile with Mercury).

The square with Uranus in Aries occurs at 8:13 PM on November the 14th. Then, she conjuncts Pluto in Capricorn on November the 15th at 4:29 PM. She sextiles Saturn on November 23rd at 1:46 PM and that's when things really start to get real in matters of Venus (via Rx venus sextiles Saturn again on Jan. 11, 2014 and direct on Feb. 25th). A sextile is supportive and it would be smart to use that energy because she will square Saturn from Aquarius which is a considerably “less nice” aspect. However, this story started unfolding LOOOONG before we ever got here.

Lets think back to Saturn in Libra time (which was another Venus/Saturn contact). This transit had many purposes. So, it would be nearly impossible to delineate them all in one article. But, primarily, I believe it was meant to teach us how to structure (Saturn) our relationships (Venus) and values (Venus). This means ALL our relationships and values. Lots of people like to boil Venus down to love or money. And, on the surface, that makes sense because many people value love and money. However, Venus is much more than that and any beginner level Astrology Student has this inkling. For the purpose of this writing, I'm going to focus on the relationship aspect of Venus which includes our relationships with others (friend or foe), with money, with our own values, with the terms justice and fairness, etc. That, in and of itself, is a fairly wide brush stroke which is why I want you to personally think back to what occurred during Saturn in Libra (2009-2012) for you in regard to relationships. Then, I want you to consider what went forward and what you changed as Saturn entered Scorpio (2012 to now).

In day to day life, we have a tendency to take transits as they occur. For example, today Moon is in Pisces trining Mercury and conjunct Neptune. So, we may look at that and say, “Ok, this, this and this is possible.” However, even though life does happen on a day to day basis, all that is before us and all that is behind us is still connected. In order to get a perspective how this stuff plays out in the theater of our lives, it's necessary to see that.

Saturn in Libra occurred to bring restriction and/or structure in our primary relationships with EVERYTHING. Then, Saturn in Scorpio comes along to place restriction and/or structure on an even deeper level in terms of intimacy, sex, our shadow and shared resources. If we worked with Saturn in Libra and “got” what Saturn was saying during his stay there then moving up one zodiac sign to Scorpio will bring even more the next chapter. At the same time, we have the outer planets Neptune, Uranus and Pluto working away on a collective level and it all ties together in some way with Jupiter (higher learning, philosophy, religion, perspective) who did provide support to Saturn in Libra while he (Jupiter) was in Gemini and now Saturn in Scorpio from Cancer.

If you look at the effects on our generational planets from the transit of Saturn through Virgo all the way up until he marches into Capricorn you can see a huge coming of age for a very large group of people. In that, I'm including Pluto in Virgo through Capricorn, Uranus in Virgo through Uranus in Capricorn and Neptune in Libra through Neptune in Capricorn.

I know Pluto has only been in Capricorn since 2008. However, I'm including children born with this placement in the above because they most certainly will be affected with the changes felt in previous generations during this time. This will shape their childhood, basically. When Saturn enters Scorpio in 2017 the earliest Pluto in Capricorn children will be turning 9 and experiencing Saturn conjunct their Pluto for the first time. They'll remember this. Plus, it gives a wider perspective as to exactly what we may be looking at here on a global level. Some of these kids were also born with Saturn in Libra and more with Saturn in Scorpio so they are literally part of the product of these transits. That's our future right there, folks.

But, how does any of this relate to Venus' extended stay in Capricorn? It's not like Venus has never been in Capricorn before and it's not like Venus has never been retrograde before, right? Right. Venus is a benefic. Uh huh. Sure she is. Lets not forget she also rules Libra which is known for balancing acts meaning if something is not “just” she can lop off something blindly to make it “even.” And, being placed in Capricorn, she's all business. It's a Venus/Saturn contact just like Saturn in Libra was which can be boiled right down to relationship Karma. So, the purpose of her extended stay in Capricorn working together with Saturn in Scorpio is to work (Saturn) to level out (Venus) the playing field in order to build (Saturn) the deeper lessons (Pluto/Saturn). And, sometimes, this has to come with a lightning bolt (Uranus).

Venus in Capricorn's square with Uranus in Aries could very well bring this lightning bolt. It doesn't have to be a bad thing, necessarily. People do have a tendency to shy away from Uranus' whiplash set of changes but it could very well bring an AHA moment in a good way. However, if you didn't work with Saturn in Libra to start with and you didn't begin to build responsibility around your relationships at that time and just kept on doing what you were doing to benefit yourself while deceiving others she could also bring big dose of WAPOW!

Venus in Capricorn's conjunction with Pluto in Capricorn could bring a deeper intimacy to your current relationship or it could bring skeletons falling out of your closet. It could bring back past loves or shady money dealings back to you (debt, theft, etc). BUT, if you've done work in these areas you could very well be blessed.

And, yes, it could be a very big deal either way in that it could mean you are step closer to fostering those rock solid relationships that are so beneficial to everyone or it could completely blow things up and you find yourself standing at ground zero on the relationship and money front.

Good thing about it is Venus/Pluto/Saturn/Uranus is a great time rebuild if the walls come tumbling down. Just when you thought Saturn in Libra was over, you know? But, it's never over. It's a constant building and reforming. This is just one step in the process AND it occurs before our relationships get set on fire with Mars' extended stay in Libra. So, pay attention!

Venus turns RX on Dec. 22nd right after Mars enters Libra on December 8th. She travels all the way back almost touching Pluto before she turns direct at 13 degrees. And, Jupiter in Cancer is right there with her (RX at 12 degrees Cancer and opposing Pluto). She travels in square to Mars the week of January 17. Then, they meet again with Mars Rx in Libra and Venus direct in Aquarius (via trine) on March 30, 2014 to compare notes.

Pluto and Uranus are considered generational planets. But, Venus' and Mars' extended stays in Capricorn and Libra are going to make Pluto in Capricorn and Uranus in Aries VERY personal. Take Venus' passage with Uranus and Pluto as a check point to see where you are. Then, move forward from there. 

Sunday, November 3, 2013

New Moon in Scorpio, Solar Eclipse: Against the wind

So much is popping up in my sphere to talk about. Big DEEP things. You know?

First, I have a small bit of conversation that relates to the New Moon/Eclipse in Scorpio (which we are now past, btw). Someone said to me, “the permanence thing makes me nervous.”

Yes, indeed, it should. That is why we spend so much time discerning what it is we want, listing and re-listing, editing and revising our intent and trying so hard to match it up with our current life. And, it is a permanent thing, I believe. Saturn does not cross these degrees for another 29 years. Lots can change in 29 years so having your rudder set to your true North is kind of a big deal.

BUT, the bigger deal here was, whatever fears or “demons” have bubbled up during this time it is very important to face them. What I responded back with to the above statement was , “Don't let that stop you.” Facing your fears/demons and being brave is very important.

Scorpio can bear a lot. They will hang with people and in relationships until they cannot any longer. And, when Scorpio decides to quit or amputate, it's done. When Scorpio amputates something it might as well be wiped from the face of existence. And, most of the time, if Scorpio has endured and endured and endured to the point it can endure no longer then there is good reason for the amputation. You know?

On the other hand, when Scorpio decides to put it's head down and weather the storm and keep pushing forward then it's in there for the long haul, for sure.

I can see this in my 8th house Mars. When I'm determined to get something done or determined to move forward it is very much like pushing against the wind. And, I will transcend or overcome whatever it is that is pushing against me and push forward or...die. It's a lot like that. Take any planet that is residing in Scorpio and it's much the same. Endure or die. Survive or amputate.

As far as our intentions, the permanence of it can be scary. The depth of what we are looking at can be ugly. But, Scorpio says, if you've made the decision to do it...then don't let fear or opposition stop you. You've dug deeply for this. Keep going. You may want to quit. You may shake in your boots at the thought but do it anyway.


The second thing I want to bring up is Karmic relationships. Encounters with relationships such as this are occurring at a ridiculous rate right now. But, with good reason! There is work to be done here! This can be the recurrent past love zombie relationship that is popping back into your world right now, in which there is unfinished business to take care of or whatever.

But, it can ALSO be a completely new and very powerful relationship that is just now coming in to play. Know that recognizing a relationship has Karmic is not the same thing as finding your soul mate or twin flame or whatever else you may be calling the “one.” These are relationships that hold key learning experiences for each person involved.

That doesn't mean that the relationship cannot evolve into something on a long term basis once the work to be done is finished. That's entirely up to the individuals involved. These are powerful connections so both people would have to be strong and willing to face some tough lessons and grow together for that to work. At the same time, they hold huge potential for mutual growth and benefit if you can weather the storm. Deeper intimacy. Deeper emotions. Stronger connections. Resiliency. “We've been through hell and we aren't giving up on one another now”

But, it is NOT by any means easy. And it is not all flowery and bubbly in that you will say, “Oh yippee, I've found my soul mate and things couldn't be prettier if we were farting strawberry scented bubbles out our asses.”


Sometimes it can be downright ugly and painful.

I've said many times that my husband and I don't have a romantic relationship. It's purely Plutonic. LOL. And, it is. Our first year of marriage god..we were JUST talking about this last night. It was HARD! I said that to him and all he could was look back at me with wide eyes and shake his head , “yes.” I laughed because it WAS! And sometimes STILL IS. But, we stuck together and have grown together and though it's a miracle we didn't kill each other, we've kind of come to the understanding that “We've been through Hell and if we can make it through that...” And, we have both put a lot of work into our relationship and the strength of that bond is showing and continues to grow.

For me, I'm all focused on protection. As much “ugly” as I see rearing it's head out there and attempting to push into my little sphere, I'm pushing out even harder with love and protection for the people I love. It's quite the spiritual battle. But, I'm Scorpio determined. You know? And, that's tough to beat. I'm not going to let my own demons or the demons out there trying to get in hurt what I care about. And, that's pretty fierce.

Sure, there can be things that happen beyond my control. But, I'm all about being here and standing up to defend them and circling the wagons in protection while gathering the regenerative power of Scorpio to foster healing—yes, that happens in this season too.

On a side note, it's not a good idea to approach someone in an effort to be detrimental to them when they've reached this type of resolve. Don't poke the Scorpion. Not a good idea. We don't forget.

Saturday, November 2, 2013

Thoughts from the middle of mid-life transits

“So many people live within unhappy circumstances and yet will not take the initiative to change their situation because they are conditioned to a life of security, conformity, and conservatism, all of which may appear to give one peace of mind, but in reality nothing is more dangerous to the adventurous spirit within a man than a secure future. The very basic core of a man's living spirit is his passion for adventure. The joy of life comes from our encounters with new experiences, and hence there is no greater joy than to have an endlessly changing horizon, for each day to have a new and different sun.”
The above is a quote from the movie “Into the Wild” starring Emile Hersch, written/directed by Sean Penn and based on the book of the same name by Jon Krakauer.
The story is about Christopher McCandless (who was a real person and the story is based on his true experiences as documented in his journals) who was a 1990 honors graduate of Emory University in Atlanta, GA. After his graduation, instead of entering into the corporate world or something similar as expected by his friends and family, McCandless takes off on a cross country adventure having destroyed his credit cards, donating his savings and ridding himself of any personal identification documents.
Sounds pretty drastic. And, it was. SPOILER ALERT McCandless eventually dies in a VW bus he had been camping in the wilderness of Alaska. After his travels across country, down to Mexico and up the California coast by various means, McCandless does find himself in the Alaska wild and decides that there is no joy in life no matter how adventurous if it cannot be shared with people you love. His efforts to return to his home were thwarted. He tried to survive the wilderness by eating what was available in nature but accidentally ingested poison that would in the end, as I said, kill him. However, the journals of his adventures, travels and thoughts remained and were used in producing both the book and movie.
McCandless resorted to extreme measures to find himself. And, sometimes, that is what it takes. Sometimes we do have a need to isolate ourselves from all outside influence and “noise” in order to hear our innermost truthful voice. However, we really don't need to go all the way to Alaska to do that. You can, I suppose, but in case you don't know, it's gets cold up there.
What he says in the above quote is very true though. Sometimes our very idea of freedom and security becomes our prison in which we are afraid to foster any type of change out of fear of losing some type of stability. Comfort becomes a rut. Fear becomes bondage. And, in both of these, we may find some type of lack even though to the outside world we should be counting our blessings because it appears we have captured “the dream.” We may question, “What is wrong with me? I have all 'this' but I'm still not happy?”
Usually this comes up years after we have entered the adult world and done all we thought we should do in order to be what we thought “grown up” was. You know, the responsible thing..job, house, spouse, children—yada yada. Then, one day we wake up and feel like something is missing.
I think McCandless may have been afraid to wake up like that one day and in his efforts he might have missed what was already right in front of him—a family that did love and support him and the grand opportunity to do exactly whatever it was he wanted to do with his life.
However, I just turned 41 and I'm noticing that some of my peers are waking up just like this. Hello. Midlife crisis anyone? I laugh every time someone tells me, “Oh, you aren't middle-aged” or “You are too young to be thinking about stuff like that.” Because, apparently my brain, body and heart just beg to differ. I'm seeing it happen around me; I'm feeling it happen to me. Why try to soothe that with denial. Why not just accept it and move forward from there?
My oldest son tried teasing me about my age on my birthday and I laughed at him saying, “You know what? Forty is brilliant. I know you don't get that now. But, hang in there. You will.” And, I absolutely meant that. I feel like I have so much more freedom of thought and movement at this age and I was pretty wild and uninhibited in my 20's. You know? But, this is different and I'm not going allow anyone to tell me I'm not where I'm at and I shouldn't be considering the things I'm considering. That thought in and of itself is part of the brilliance of my age and I've an inkling it only gets better from here. Though, I do suspect that we should still keep a bit of forethought as far as action and consequence goes. If we are lucky enough to make it to double 40 we may be approaching a time when we are more dependent on others and need their help. So, burning bridges at this age becomes more and more dangerous.
However, back to the original quote and the point here, it is also an age where we can find that the very things we strived for, the very stability that we've now found and obtained has become a prison of sorts. And, usually, what is missing is a self nurturing spiritual element and something that allows us to start contributing to our “community” (however you personally define that term) as a whole. People do wild and crazy things when faced with this. They run off and join the circus. They buy new shiny things and have plastic surgery to regain part of their youth. They run off to Alaska and live in a bus. When, really, all you have to do is realize, “Ok, something is missing. Maybe I need to do a little self-exploration to figure out exactly what that is.” Maybe it is a career switch that is in order. Maybe it is taking those first steps toward doing something that seems off beat with what everyone expects. Maybe it is as simple as trying something new. The point is don't let your current stability stop you from rocking the boat a little in an effort to 1) try to find and express a more true and authentic version of you (afterall, no one else can do that as well as you) and 2) be happy.
There's a unique kind of self-authority that comes in this age. And while I do not suggest burning bridges, abandoning your family or, in essence, completely blowing up your life, it is ok to foster change and do things that may be considered out of the norm. It is YOUR midlife crisis, right? And, it most certainly is your life and future.

Friday, November 1, 2013

Psychopomp Life

A lady, that I am very honored to call my friend, Cat, has just launched her own website which is all about life as a psychopomp.

If you don't know what a psychopomp is, don't worry. I didn't either. But, Cat is an ace at explaining it all. The site also contains many wonderful resources to information helpful with the dying/grieving process. She's already addressed some of my questions. What she doesn't know is that I have many!

If you have questions, well, there's a spot for those on the site too.

I greatly encourage you to check her out and read all about the Psychopomp Life.

Congratulations on the launch of your site, Cat!