Archive for September, 2014

Thank You, Mercedes Lackey

Tuesday, September 30th, 2014

Mercedes LackeyDuring one of the hardest periods of my adult life, a time when I was emotionally distraught on a regular basis, withdrawn and having trouble coping, I found Mercedes Lackey’s books and they saved my sanity.

Lackey writes fantasy and a large subset of her books are set in a fictional world called Valdemar, where intelligent beings called Companions mindspeak with humans called Heralds, who are one part marshal, one part angel and one part flawed human being. Companions are essentially large, white horses with blue eyes and they are both psychic and benevolent. Now that’s a lot to swallow if you, Dear Reader, are no longer a teenager, but if you sink into the story you find yourself quickly immersed in a world of heroism, good-vs-evil and derring-do to rival our best beloved legends. Strictly speaking, Lackey’s work is not literature (not any more than that of Stephen King, another of my favorites), but it elevates pulp to a high standard. Perhaps someday it may be called literature, as Dickens’ serials are now.

Lackey’s Valdemar books have become my go-to relaxation books to read. I can count on her to create a world where the good guys win in the end and a child will get to be a hero. When I first found the Valdemar series, I read one, then a trilogy, then avidly ate up everything Valdemar there was. Then, as I didn’t yet feel finished, I read them ALL over again with no break, this time in chronological order. I’m a fast reader and it’s been a couple of years, so I’m thinking of doing it again. While I was on my break, apparently she’s written 5 more and so now I’m reading those.

This blogpost is a fond letter to Mercedes Lackey in gratitude for saving my peace of mind. While reading one of her latest series, I became curious about her chart. In that way that happens when you immerse yourself in a writer’s oeuvre, I feel that I know my way around inside Lackey’s mind. That’s the reader’s arrogance and it occurs the most, I postulate, when the writer is really connected to her work and so the reader feels that connection shine all the way through and right off the page. So I went to Lackey’s chart with some idea of what I’d find.

I expected to find a warm-hearted, geeky girl who lives in her imagination, a rich place indeed. I expected to find a heroic streak, not likely lived out in real life, but in the abstract, through writing. And I expected to find a love of the otherworldly and a big, big faith in the triumph of good. I wasn’t disappointed. Here’s Mercedes Lackey’s chart:

Check out that Mercury in Gemini trine Neptune, circled in yellow. It’s not surprising to discover Lackey is one of the Neptune in Libra generation, a soul-group with a shared vision, a beautiful dream of love, peace and harmony, perpetually asking, “Why can’t we all just get along?” Her Mercury communicates from that place and the Neptune trine guarantees that she sees intuition as a natural extension of rationality and that her writing mind has a deep well of imagination to draw from. Writing, and especially writing fantasy fiction, is a natural talent with her, like breathing. In fact, it’s so easy that it’s almost surprising to see that she actually went to the effort to develop it (most people ignore their natural talents and don’t bother to cultivate them).

The “heroic, but lived in the abstract” side is shown in her Mars in Libra, the white-hatted, white-horsed fellow who wants to win the nice way, the fair way. This is a hero who plays by the rules and fights for the beautiful ideals of Neptune in Libra.

Lackey’s “warm hearted but geeky” side comes straight from her Sun in Cancer conjunct Uranus, which isn’t afraid to stand out and look a little weird in order to march to one’s own drummer. I’ve circled them in blue. Her Cancer Sun is the reason why so many of Lackey’s protagonists are children or teens, at least when they first appear in her world. After that, they grow up quickly.

That Cancer Sun also explains the nurturing handling of her main characters. She puts them through their paces but she is not their punishing god. Punishment is reserved for those with bad intentions. This attitude is also reflective of her Jupiter-trine-Sun, and that Jupiter placed in Pisces, evidence of a faith-oriented personality. Jupiter is also the ruler of her Sagittarius Rising, suggestive that she perceives the world through a Sagittarian lens—as a perpetual quest for meaning and righteousness. Lackey’s portrayal of religion in her works suggests that she believes it is possible to be spiritual and moral outside the bounds of religion, perhaps more so than within. Her Saturn in Virgo in the Ninth House (circled in green) suggests that she grew up in an atmosphere of intolerance, which she herself, as she matured, did not subscribe to. Chiron in Sagittarius in the First squared Saturn underscores that possibility. I’ve never read a biography of Lackey and I don’t even know if one is available, so all this is speculation and shouldn’t be taken as fact.

If it is so that Lackey grew up in an intolerant household, then she has clearly made it her mission to spread tolerant ideas and has created a fantasy world which can positively influence future generations.

That Saturn squares her Mercury, weaving writing into the Great Work of her life, a clarion call she responded to of course, and we get to enjoy the results. Put together with Chiron in Sagittarius, here we find a T-square, suggesting she, at times, has identified as one of the walking wounded and that her healing process is her gift to the world. Whatever that interpretation might mean to her is private, so we’ll draw a curtain over that and move on.

In her transits, Lackey has entered a fallow career period, which I say because Saturn has entered her Twelfth House. This lasts from about Halloween/Samhain of 2013 to January of 2015. It’s a time when Lackey should not expect a lot of herself, should rest, retreat and look inward, preparing for a time of intense work and cultivation of her reputation in 2015 from January to November. This coincides beautifully with a Jupiter Luck period she’ll be having beginning in November of 2015 and lasting for about a year. If I could advise Lackey, I’d say, “Dive deep now and you’ll bounce out really hard at the end of 2015.” She’s also having an intense set of transits to her Neptune, from Jupiter, Uranus and Pluto, over the next year and spilling into 2016, which may trigger a change in direction for her creative content, perhaps for the darker, and knowing Lackey, almost certainly for the better. It’s anybody’s guess what her writing will be like in 2016. Can’t wait to find out.


High Five! Jupiter Trine Uranus In Fire Signs

Wednesday, September 24th, 2014

ball of lightThe scene is Mount Olympus, a heavenly grassy area atop a mountain with fantastic views in every direction.  You hear a rumbling, then a crashing, and before you know it, Jupiter is running up the mountain from one side and Uranus is running up from the other.  They meet in a resounding high-five that shakes heaven and earth.  After wrestling playfully for a moment, they collapse in laughter.
Jupiter:  This is going to be the BEST!
Uranus:  I know.  We’re going to have a great time.
Jupiter:  What’d you bring?
Uranus:  Assorted lightning bolts and a bolt-thrower.  See?
Out of an enormous pocket he pulls a complicated assembly which is essentially a catapult with a winch at one end.  Next to it he places a giant drum with lightning bolts peeking out the top.  The lightning bolts are making a buzzy, sizzling hum and emitting a neon glow in assorted colors.
Uranus:  I’m all ready to shock humanity with innovation and change.  It’s been a busy year already.  What’d you bring?
Jupiter:  This.
He pulls his hand out of his pocket in a fist.  Opening his fist, a warm glowing ball of light appears there, vibrating and jiggling with energy.
Uranus:  Very nice.  What does it do?
Jupiter:  It will grow anything you put out there.  It will infuse humanity with confidence and leadership ability.
Uranus:  Oh yes, that will definitely work.
Jupiter:  Let’s get started.
Uranus:  Got yer back.
They stand, back to back, and survey the landscape.
Uranus:  I see a community that needs to come together.  It’s close to cohering, but doesn’t really have a center.
Jupiter:  Check the moral structure.
Uranus:  Your job.
Jupiter takes out a spyglass and aims it in the direction Uranus is pointing.
Jupiter:  Hmm, it’s a church.  Or a temple or a mosque—I never can tell the difference from way up here.  Looks like some very nice people, but they’re too scattered.
Uranus:  No strong leadership.  Tolerant people and strong ethical fiber, but there’s no real center.  They need someone charismatic to bring fire.  Who shall we zap?
Jupiter:  That one, right there!  Yes, that one has what it takes!
Uranus cranks up the catapult and locks it down.  Then he pulls out a lightning bolt of medium size and places it in the catapult.  Taking aim, he releases.  The bolt flies true and lands smack on the Human Being in question, down on Earth.  There’s a shudder in the Earth’s emotional body as the feeling-field of the people near that Human Being adjust.  The Human Being is about to be noticed.
Uranus (gleefully):  Your turn!
Jupiter rubs his hands together and pulls them apart.  As he does so, the ball expands.  When it’s the size of a basketball, he lobs it down to Earth, where it bursts into a giant explosion of happy leadership, right in the heart of the Human Being.  The Human Being lights up, gets 10 ideas, and runs to tell everyone.
Uranus (applauding):  Again!
Jupiter:  Definitely.  What’s next?
Uranus:  Let’s build a utopian society, upgrade the morals of a world leader and send some truly innovative thoughts to a few people who are positioned to make a difference.  Then we’ll cause a sleepless night for someone who is ready to step into a leadership role.  And then we’ll hlightning boltead over to the tech industry and spark some ideas about inventions that make life better.  Then we’ll take a break for lunch.
Jupiter:  How long shall we do this for?
Uranus:  Till next June.  That should be enough, don’t you think?
Jupiter:  It’s going to be a busy year!
After another high-five neither deity seems able to stop themselves from, they get back to their fun pursuit.

What Does This Mean For You?

This wonderful trine between Jupiter and Uranus begins in September of 2014 and finishes in June of 2015.  It covers 14-20º of Fire signs, so if you have any planet in that span, you will love this transit.

Enjoy it while you can!  Especially if your birthday falls into these dates:

Arians born:  April 3-10
Geminis born:  June 4-11
Leos born:  August 6-13
Librans born:  October 6-13
Sagittarians born:  December 6-12
Aquarians born:  February 2-9

For more about Jupiter’s passage through Leo, read this:
Jupiter in Leo—Your Time In The Sun 

And here’s a post I made the last time Jupiter and Uranus met in the sky, in 2010.  It had a similar feel:
The Crackle Of Change As Jupiter And Uranus Meet In The Sky 

Are you benefiting from this Uranus/Jupiter trine?

If you want to know how to use this time more effectively,

contact Jamie for an astrology reading

to find out how it affects your chart.


How Does Libra Love?

Wednesday, September 10th, 2014

Libra heart 1Do you love a Libra?
Are you a Libra in love?

Human relationships are complex, layered things.  Every sign responds to love differently and has needs that are particular to it.  Also no individual can be categorized by their Sun sign alone.  Every person is a mixed bag of astrological traits, but an emphasis on Libra in your chart (or its ruling planet, Venus) will result in distinctly Libran experience.  In particular, if you have the Sun or Moon in Libra OR if you have Venus or Juno in Libra, this article is just for you.

Are you a Libra in love?
Have you noticed that sometimes you can fall in love with love itself?  The sensation of love and the romance that goes with it is intoxicating to a Libra.  And when that sensation takes you over, it’s easy to give too much or to yield too much.  Here we find Libra’s core dilemma—is it better to love or to be loved?  It gets tiresome being the nice guy and you may prefer to have the power of the relationship in your own hands and to be able to pull a partner in at will.  For this reason, ultimately you prefer to charm and seduce rather than pursue.  Why chase someone who isn’t really interested—and who can’t be wrapped around your finger?  That just throws you—and the relationship—off balance.

How to manage your relationships as a Libra. . .
Fairness is one of the most important factors in a relationship for Librans, but striking the balance between giving too much (which is Libra’s natural tendency) and taking too much (to compensate for over-giving) is hard—especially for the Scales.  Your desire to be rational is very right-minded, but how do you know what’s really fair in every situation?  Your mind doesn’t have the whole answer.  It can come up with endless, perfectly logical lists of reasons why to do A or B, but without arriving at a clear conclusion.  For that, you need your gut.  Get good at consulting your emotions, Libra, and decisions—and decisive action—will get easier.

Do you love a Libra?
Do you ever get the feeling that your Libra is just a little bit. . . vain?  Does your Libra secretly like holding all the cards by being “the cute one” in the relationship?  Is the idea of making a decision on his own excruciating for your Libra?  What will happen when your Libra ages beyond the cute years?  Has she gotten lazy, accustomed to getting by on charm?  How does your Libra know what’s really fair?  These things may be a minor annoyance for you, but for your Libra, they are a real problem and if you can help with them, you will prove invaluable to your Libra.  Begin by respecting your Libra’s mind, rather than getting distracted by his/her smoke-and-mirrors charm and beauty.

If you have Venus or Juno in Libra in your chart, the chances of you dating Librans is very high.  How to handle the Libra you love. . .

  • Appreciate the effort she puts into bringing beauty into your life—then tell her that you love her for her inner beauty, not her outer beauty
  • Encourage him to quit being such a “Mr. Nice Guy”
  • Remind her to stand up for herself and to check her emotions for a decisive answer, rather than arguing both sides until total lack of clarity ensues
  • Encourage him to practice making decisions without asking your opinion first, and also without overthinking them
  • When he plays Devil’s Advocate, consider that perhaps he is just presenting a counterpoint for the sake of balance and not because he believes it.  Ask him what he actually thinks and feels about it.
  • Libra’s polished and rational ways can lead to superficiality.  Although it’s distasteful, being a little less civilized (for once!) and a bit more raw might be a good antidote.

How to find out more:
In this article there’s only room to hint at the deeper understanding of Libra that astrology has to offer.  To find out more about being a Libra in Love or loving a Libra, get this teleconference call recording:

Libra In Love      MP3 recording      45 minutes      $9.97

In it, you’ll discover:

  • Why your Libra is so critical–and self-critical—and how to soothe his perfectionism
  • What your Libra needs in order to sink into committed relationship with you
  • Signs Libra is most compatible with, and why
  • And if you are a Libra, you’ll learn the benefits you bring to every relationship you’re in and the relationship-killers you absolutely must avoid

To get the recording, email me at for a fast and easy MP3 download.

Not a Libra?  Find out about YOUR sign in love by joining the free teleclass for it, coming up in your birthday month:

Sign Up For More Free Teleclasses


Find The Light, Robin Williams

Monday, September 1st, 2014

Who didn’t react strongly, even cry immediately, upon hearing of his death?  And especially how he died?  Not me.  I lost it.  In looking at Robin Williams’ chart, I wanted to discover why this might have happened to someone who brought joy to so many.  I went looking for a complex human being, and I found one.

8-31-14 Robin Williams natal chartHis Moon in Pisces describes an emotional nature so subtle and refined that it almost cannot be in the world, and will inevitably lead to disappointment as the world does not live up to one’s ideals.  When discussing Moon in Pisces, I wax poetic and quote Whitman’s Song of Myself: “Do I contradict myself? Very well then, I contradict myself. I am large; I contain multitudes.”  A Pisces Moon person, especially one with a stellium (grouping of planets) in Pisces, will often feel less like an individual and more like a crowd, a veritable sea of possible persons he could be.  He will often feel he is alternately swimming, drowning or lost in a sea of longings, urges, sensations, drives and passions and he isn’t entirely sure which are truly his.  Often, he doesn’t know who he is, really.  Some of these currents of feeling may be his, some may be leaking in from the people he lives and works with, others may be memories that feel real and present right now, and others still may be the tendrils of past-life memories that also feel equally real as they pass through him like an apparition.  With all this going on, how can a Pisces Moon be other than a dreamer?  How to get his feet on the ground?  And he may be prone to gloom and escapism if he doesn’t find his way to a peaceful retreat on a regular basis, where he can empty his heart, before returning to the world where it will inevitably go on sponging up emotions and sensations.

In fact, Williams’ chart is so full of sensitivity (loaded with Water), intensity, darkness and even gloom (Scorpio Rising with Pluto culminating and square the Ascendant) that in looking at it, I wondered where the comedian was.  I looked at Saturn, the usual career indicator, but Williams’ Saturn is equally serious, placed in Virgo and square Chiron.  I finally found the funny bone in his Jupiter square Uranus (a placement Ellen Degeneres also has, and also in Fire and Water).  This is an apt descriptor of Williams’ electric, fast-moving and even manic wit, and explains the attraction to cocaine.  It also explains his amazing capacity to free-associate new material on the spot.  One critic called him “an endless gusher of invention.”  This ability was amply used in some of his best-loved work: Mork & Mindy, Good Morning, Vietnam and Aladdin.

But I’m coming to a major point here:  the comedian in Williams was not his whole self—not remotely—and when someone who can be funny is expected to be funny all the time, it takes its toll.

Having Scorpio Rising isn’t easy—it usually gives its natives a feeling of being raw and exposed all the time.  How each Scorpio Rising individual copes with his own unremitting feeling of overexposure is his own business, but if life is a university and we are tested on whether we live out our charts in positive or negative ways, then Williams deserves a high grade.  His Wikipedia page says, “Many comedians valued the way he worked highly personal issues into his comedy routines, especially his honesty about drug and alcohol addiction, along with depression.”  Not easy for anyone to be that transparent, let alone a highly sensitive, at times paranoid, Scorpio Riser.

If Williams struggled with anything, it was marriage.  He was married three times (1st House Juno trine Sun was probably responsible for that) and fathered several children.  His Venus in Virgo tightly conjunct the South Node suggests a tendency towards extremely high, perhaps unattainable, standards in relationship.  Some Virgo Venus natives apply these standards to their partners and some to themselves; either way a Virgo Venus individual has a hard time simply allowing love in.  The South Node connection implies re-engaging with past-life partners in this one, sometimes for completion of past karma, sometimes resulting in entanglement that prevents the native from moving forward.  Williams’ Pisces Moon opposed that Venus, suggesting the ability to be emotionally devoted to a partner, but also to give and receive in unequal measure. Such a person often has trouble balancing love of another with care of oneself.  He may give to others too much, then retreat and suck energy from the other excessively.  It’s extremely hard to balance, as it contains a big streak of self-sacrifice and self-abnegation.

I mentioned before that his chart was loaded with Water, and we need look no further than this when we ask ourselves, “why suicide?”  One astrological blogger comments, “No matter what role he was playing, clown or serious, actor or humanitarian, there was always sadness in Robin Williams eyes. Always.”  The guy just plain felt everything.  It shows in his chart’s trifecta:  Cancer Sun, Scorpio Rising, Pisces Moon.  All Water.

This is the kind of situation I can only hold in my mind because I believe in reincarnation.  So I think this life is one of many, and not just many hundreds, but uncountable millions of lifetimes that an individual lives.  If you believe that suicides go to hell (whether literally or metaphorically), then you might think Robin is in hell now.  And that’s a very sad thought.  But I have a different one.  Maybe that Pisces Moon of his never came all the way into the world in the first place.  Maybe it had one toe in the otherworld all along.  Maybe this was a relief, to let go of the burden of the body, to slip out and away into the light.

But that would be heretical to say, wouldn’t it?  Against all our instincts and our morals too (in an area where for once they agree).  But the fact is, we don’t know what happens after death.  We have what religions have told us and we have what those who have come near death and returned report to us.  But mostly, we just don’t know.  For my own peace of mind, I have to think that suicide is seen by God/the Universe/All-That-Is as a chance for a reboot.  I have to believe that being alive is a choice.  Not to be taken lightly, but a choice nonetheless.  A choice that can be revoked if the soul gets in too deep.  I also have to believe that every human life belongs to its owner first and foremost.  If we own anything, our own life should top the list.  So if Robin Williams decided he was done, and he wanted to grip the otherworld with the toehold he still had in it, and pull himself over there, who am I to judge?  If I were family, then I know I would feel differently, and I’d have a right to.  But because I’m not, all I can say is, “Look for the light, Robin, as you fly, fly away.”