July 03, 2007
Beautiful Women Changing

Watch these beautiful women morph into each other.

Vinessa03:57 PM
December 15, 2006
Star of Wonder

I thought the new movie, Nativity Story, was really good. If you've read the reviews you know that the character of Joseph is especially complex, but I appreciated the other characters as well, for example Herod (nasty man!), Mary's family, Zechariah and Elizabeth, etc.

The King of Kings, born to nobodies, for nobodies

There were only two faults that I could see in the movie. One, the angel of God was kinda flat, which, in some ways, might not have been bad. The "power" of God didn't come across, but the mystery of God did.

The other fault, in my opinion, was in the character of Mary. When she saw the messenger of God at first she was afraid (which makes sense). But when she obeyed and received the seed that would become Jesus, it was somehow wooden and emotionless. You didn't get the sense that she loved God or anything. Just that she was kneeling down and submitting. In other ways in the movie Mary is a great character. I wish her heart had come across in this scene more.

Three Magi (click on images to enlarge)

Anyway, overall I thought the movie was great. And I especially liked the depiction of the three astrologer-magis which brought a smile to my face. Very creative. And also astronomically and astrologically accurate, following the latest best thinking on the Star of Wonder, with a little extra added in, I won't give it away...

But below is a pretty good slide show on the current best scientific understanding of The Star. Click on the image to view it.


Only a week or so more to go now until the solstice and the turning back of the light...

May your holidays be safe and warm!

Vinessa02:13 PM
October 20, 2006
Birth of Alcoholics Anonymous

Hi everybody -- In honor of this Libra New Moon (which will conjunct many of our natal Neptunes) I thought I would post this info on the birth of Alcoholics Anonymous.

Some of you know that I've returned to Recovery, have been attending Al-Anon meetings again, and am finally doing the 12 steps with a sponsor. For 30+ years I've been dipping in and out of meetings, but never actually did the steps. I'm now finding it to be an awesome process. For example, I have a good mind... but so good that I can rationalize or gloss over the actual MECHANICS of change. Or rather, I can think and understand about change... all the while being unconscious in my actions and reactions. So the "steps" (and my sponsor) are leading me through, little by little, one step at a time and God willing, into awareness, honesty and surrender.

Anyway, I've been looking into the roots of AA and discovered that the "birth" of Alcoholics Anonymous is considered to be the date Bill W. was admitted to the hospital for the third time. The time of his admittance is recorded in the hospital records, and during this third stay is when he had a spiritual awakening, and the Program which has now helped millions was revealed to him. He never drank again after that.

Below is the chart -- AA has an Aquarius Moon!

(click on image to enlarge)

It's an interesting chart in a variety of ways. Hit the "comment" link below to add your thoughts!

See also:
- Bill W's letter to Carl Jung
- Carl Jung's answer to Bill W.

Vinessa02:02 PMcomment (2)view »
September 14, 2006
A Planet is Named: Goddess of Discord

Eris, by Alexandra, www.ravendusk.com Eris, by Susanna Coffey, www.alphagallery.com

A Dwarf Planet Is Named: ERIS
New York Times: September 14, 2006
By Kenneth Chang

The dwarf planet formerly known as Xena received a new name today, while Pluto was given a number to reflect the loss of its status as a planet.

Dr. Michael E. Brown, a professor of planetary astronomy at the California Institute of Technology who discovered the distant ball of ice and rock that he nicknamed Xena, chose the name Eris, after the goddess of discord and strife in Greek mythology. The International Astronomical Union made the name official today.

"It is absolutely the perfect name," Dr. Brown said, given the continuing discord among astronomers and the public over whether Pluto should have retained its planetary status.

In mythology, Eris ignited discord that led to the Trojan War.

"She causes strife by causing arguments among men, by making them think their opinions are right and everyone else's is wrong," Dr. Brown said. "It really is just perfect."

Pluto, now that it is no longer a planet, has been assigned the number 134340 in the catalog of minor planets. In 1999, the astronomical union's Minor Planet Center had proposed assigning Pluto the number 10000 in the same catalog, to give it dual citizenship as both a planet and a member of the Kuiper Belt, a ring of icy debris beyond Neptune. Brian Marsden, director of the center, said it was meant as special recognition for Pluto, but the idea was withdrawn after protests from people who saw it as a demotion.

read more »

Vinessa02:48 PMcomment (2)view »
August 18, 2006
Not Quite Non-Violent
(AP) Following a less non-violent path to enlightenment, right-wing Buddhist monks stormed the stage of an anti-war demonstration in Colombo, Sri Lanka today. The monks shouted pro-war slogans and scuffled with the peace protesters. Their leader, Galagodaatte Ganasara (right), had to be pulled off the podium.
Vinessa12:24 PM
July 16, 2006
Our world, in perspective

(click on the images to enlarge)

Vinessa08:53 PM
July 01, 2006
Napa Group memories

(click on image to enlarge)

Hi everybody -- Jane had sent pictures of the Spring 2005 retreat awhile back and I finally uploaded them today, along with various pictures of past retreats -- it's been a sweet and heartful walk down memory lane.

Road to Enchanted Hills, click on image to see Napa memories

I also wanted to let you know that for our last time together in Napa this upcoming September I've been able to keep the early-bird prices going, so there has been no price rise. Woo hoo! Early bird prices are still in effect and will continue until the retreat.

Registration is solid and has been ongoing, but I still do have spaces left, so if you're thinking about coming I hope you will!! Newcomers are also welcome -- it'd be a great opportunity for those of you lurking out there to experience a part of AP history before the next chapter unfolds.

Steve will be diving deep as usual into charts you all provide (all-chart grab-bag). Plus we're planning some cool optional evening activities and there will be time as usual to rest, explore and connect with our evolutionary soul brothers and sisters.

Click here for more information on the Fall 2006 retreat in Napa, September 8-12, including the topic description, prices, etc.

Until we're together again,

Vinessa01:30 PM
June 15, 2006
Somewhere Over the Rainbow

This story made my heart lift today. It's a wonderful testimony to how patience and care can help the most timid spirits blossom.

New York Times: June 14, 2006
By Michael Winerip

DIANA SENECHAL is a first-year teacher of immigrant students at I.S. 223, a middle school in Brooklyn, and maybe, if she'd been more experienced, she would have known better than to have her students perform "The Wizard of Oz" when they were so new to this country and spoke so little English.

They arrived at I.S. 223 talking 24 different languages and not knowing a soul. About the only thing they shared was a shyness of speaking English aloud.

read more »

Vinessa01:05 PM
May 10, 2006
Perfect Love, Imperfect Relationships

excerpted from the introduction to:
Perfect Love, Imperfect Relationships, by John Welwood.

The Mood of Unlove

There are hundreds of books on the market that offer relationship fixes in one form or another. Some of these techniques can be quite helpful. Yet at some point, most technical fixes turn out to be patches that fall off, for they fail to address what lies at the root of all interpersonal conflict and misunderstanding -- whether between marital partners, family members, friends, fellow workers, or different ethnic groups in the world at large. All the most intractable problems in human relationships can be traced back to what I call the mood of unlove -- a deep seated suspicion most of us harbor within ourselves that we cannot be loved, or that we are not truly loveable, just for who we are. This basic insecurity makes it hard to trust in ourselves, in other people, or in life itself.

read more »

Vinessa08:56 PM
March 17, 2006
Sights and sounds of Patzcuaro

Breaktime Astrologers picnic

Well, the votes are in. The AP Retreat in Mexico was fantastic! The weather was glorious and warm, Patzcuaro was rich and magical, and the topic of the outer planets, the shifting of the ages and our role within that shift, was incredible and deep. Several healings occured, and many people started a new love affair with the heart of highland Mexico.

If you click on the pictures above you'll go to the photo area, where I've posted pictures of the retreat and our activities in Patzcuaro.

I also had a small digital recorder and was able to capture live music in various settings. Patzcuaro is a very cultural town and I hope these sound clips will also give you a feel for the place. Click on the links below to listen.

- Folk guitar/choral group practicing*
- Another folk guitar/choral group practicing
- Guitarist singing ranchera music in local restaurant*
- Purepecha wedding hymn
- Purepecha wedding allelujah
- Folk/pop singer in local restaurant
- Folk/pop singer #2*
- Folk/pop singer #3*
- Wandering mariachis in a little shack by the lake
- Wandering mariachis #2
- Mexican rock/pop group in local restaurant
- Mexican rock/pop group #2*
- Mexican rock/pop group #3*
- Mexican rock/pop group #4
- Mexican rock/pop group #5


Vinessa07:25 PM
February 19, 2006
El Pueblo Magico

I arrived in Patzcuaro this morning, after mayhem at LAX and an overnight flight. Getting through Morelia airport was very easy, and although the Casas de Cambio were closed, my driver was on time and I was glad when we started out in the cool morning air on our way to the Pueblo Magico.

Seen through the eyes of my future retreat participants however, the ride was less than inspiring. I was thinking I needed to write a little pep-talk message, one that would help everyone make the transition from the clean, abundant predictability of the United States to the often gritty reality of Mexico. It can definitely be depressing at first to see so much more poverty, litter on the roadside, half finished buildings abandoned, things broken down, people seemingly hopeless, piles of leaves adding smoke to the haze and mirroring industrial smokestacks belching in the distance.

I think every journey has a membrane, a sort of deep disappointment that dashes the romantic fantasies cultivated during planning -- at first. I feel this depression each time I arrive in Mexico.... but then I wait.... Because I've learned that once I've adjusted to the inevitable disappointment, magic somehow comes my way afterwards, and no more often than in Patzcuaro.

I came early in Patzcuaro to prepare for the AP retreat and take a short immersion Spanish class. In the spirit of authenticity am staying first in an inexpensive Mexican run family hotel before the retreat starts at La Casa Encantada. It's a fairly basic place, with no English anywhere -- perfect for being challenged to use Spanish every day!

Beat from my overnight flight I checked in at about 8:30 am and went straight to bed for a "nap". Then, at about 11:00 I was awoken by some of the most beautiful choral Mexican folk music I have ever heard, and it was obviously live in the courtyard!! I stepped outside and the magic had begun. The hotel was filled with young people from all over Mexico, prodigies in guitar and string bass, and they were being led in their practices before a performance that will be held at the Teatro later today at 3:00 pm.

And here I was, with a miniature digital recording setup in my bags... I ran back to my room and grabbed the recorder and stereo mic, went up to the second floor and watched them practice while dangling the mic down into the courtyard space. I also took a couple of pictures. So here are my first gifts of magic to you. (click on picture to enlarge)

Click also on the links below for streaming music clips.
-- Angelic voices
-- Another group outside

I've come to believe more and more that if we are ready for a dream and are willing to let the first depression or disappointment pass, magic will blossom. There are dragons guarding every treasure and part of the hero's journey is not running from them or wishing them away but accepting that they have a purpose. People are often tested for their ability to not let a (paper) dragon squash their spirit. And they are also often challenged to keep believing, not in a romantic fantasy, but in the magic that *will* come as long as we stay patient, awake and open.


Vinessa08:03 PM
February 06, 2006
Souls Journey & Primal Astrology

Hi -- This is just to let everyone know that later this year I am planning to sell the rights to two domain names I currently have registered. I never ended up building the websites; the two I currently have are enough for me. So if any of you are interested in having your own website, or changing your current name to something else, the two names I am selling are:

- primalastrology.com
- soulsjourney.com

Eclipse, by Via Keller at www.psycherotica.com ... (click to enlarge)

In a nutshell, domain names are registered with a registrar and there's an annual fee of $7-10 to maintain the rights. But since names are unique, they can be valuable in and of themselves. Only one person or entity for example has the rights to home.com, or shopping.com, or music.com. The current owner of realestate.com paid tens of thousands of dollars to purchase the name from someone who already had it registered.

I've had offers on soulsjourney.com in particular, one from a woman who runs Souls Journey, Inc., incorporated in Ohio somewhere. But she was incensed that I had grabbed the name 2 years previously and was so hostile and aggressive that I decided not to sell to her. (a soulful woman indeed!)

But I don't really need the names anymore and I'd rather offer them to you all, my family and extended community. They are good names, and if anybody wanted to do something rich and creative online, they would be getting real gems.

So if you're interested, write me an offer. Tell me what you would like to pay, and your vision, or what you would like to do with the name. I'll consider both in determining who to transfer the rights to. If you're on a shoestring but have a really cool and well-developed vision, that's great! And if you just want to keep the name(s) in your pocket as an investment instead, that's fine too.

June 18th looks like a good deadline for receiving offers -- it's a Uranus station, with Mars conj Saturn, and at tne end of the day an Aries Moon conjunct the North node.

So think about it. After you have the name in hand, your next step would be to purchase webhosting services (the actual e-space a website lives on). The webhost and registrar work together to "point" the name to your e-space. Having been through a few webhosts before this one, I can also recommend my current host very highly. They are very responsive, and hosting only costs $60 the first year, and $40 each year after. Check out the little banner at the bottom of the right sidebar if you're interested.

If you need any more information, let me know! If nobody scoops up these names I'll release them back into the public pool for anybody to grab.

Namaste y'all. ;)

Vinessa10:33 AM
February 04, 2006
Venus in Capricorn

Happy Venus Station in Capricorn! I hope the goddess of Love is treating you well. Below are a couple of resources you may find interesting.

Trick or Treat, by khayes on Flickr.com ... (I love the coolness of this baby)


If you haven't heard of it already, StarIQ is an astrological webmagazine published by Rick Levine and Jeff Jawer. They do a great job.

Among the cool things you will find on their website is a way to register with your birthdata and get a personalized planetary forecast customized to your chart (sample here), automatically emailed to you, for free, a few days before each event. An example would be Mars approaching a square to your Saturn, or Venus coming into sextile with your Sun. They leave out the Moon so as not to fill your mailbox, and the outer planets which are too slow to pinpoint. But they track the Sun, Mercury, Venus and Mars. I like these emails because they are different than the Rob Hand material that Astrodienst uses, and which we are already familiar with. Check out the custom email horoscope subscriptions here.

They also have a streaming audio program called PlanetPulse, check it out here.


I just stumbled on Astrotheme this morning. It looks like it's in France, but it's interesting because you can look for famous people with Sun/Moon combinations -- or Sun/AS, Sun/Venus, Venus/Mars, etc. Also just planets in houses, planets in signs, and houses in signs.

They have 27,854 celebrities currently in their database, and the French pick interesting people, not just the standard ones we typically see. A quick glance shows James Redfield, Edna St. Vincent Millay, Peaches Geldof, Leland Stanford, Tupac Shakur, John Philip Sousa, Paul Hogan, and Vanessa Paradis. (Who is this woman? A French singer/actress, Johnny Depp's partner and mother of his child).

... (click on images to enlarge)

Here's the Astrotheme page for finding Sun/Moon combinations.


River of Night Koyaanisqatsi ... (click to enlarge)

Eric Francis has put together a beautiful and interesting site. Planet Waves is a feast for the eyes and mind. Eric lives in Paris and is a photographer and artist (gallery here) in addition to being an astrologer. (I'm picking up a theme here, does France have Venus in Capricorn?)

Some areas of the site are only available by subscription ($55 annually), including Planetary Waves Weekly, and a special Planet Waves Annual Edition. This year's annual edition is called Parallel Worlds. Check out the beautiful red Venus picture by clicking on the link. The intro is below.

Parallel Worlds, the 8th annual edition of Planet Waves, explores the mysteries of the next four seasons and far beyond. We'll have extended write-ups for each of the signs, with interpretations covering work, relationships and personal growth, plus articles on the main events of 2006: Pluto on the Galactic Core, Saturn opposite Neptune, the Centaur planets, the eclipses and much more.

Parallel Worlds looks far beyond 2006, and continues tracking the mysterious spiral road to 2012 -- a discussion begun in Bridge to the Core, the 2005 annual edition. We will have both Mayan and Western perspectives on this theme, including our first exploration of Pluto in Capricorn.

Other areas of the site are free, including Political Waves and Best of Planet Waves. "Best of" articles include:

- Death and the Moon
- Love in the Time of Depleted Uranium
- The Art of Rebellion
- An Excellent Moral Crisis (Chiron in Aquarius)
- Not Just a River in Egypt

and much more...

In honor of the Year of the Dog, Eric has also written a fun article this month called All Dogs Need Jobs featuring the dog All Bark.

All Bark, by Ronald Dahl ... (click on image to enlarge)

I hope you find these resources interesting.
Vinessa07:52 AM
January 11, 2006
Father of LSD turns 100

(click on images to enlarge)

Once again, Capricorn rocks! Today is the birthday of LSD's discoverer. Albert Hofmann turns 100 years old today in Switzerland, proof that psychedelic experience doesn't necessarily shorten one's life. Read on!

New York Times
January 7, 2006
By Craig S. Smith

Albert Hofmann, the father of LSD, walked slowly across the small corner office of his modernist home on a grassy Alpine hilltop here, hoping to show a visitor the vista that sweeps before him on clear days. But outside there was only a white blanket of fog hanging just beyond the crest of the hill. He picked up a photograph of the view on his desk instead, left there perhaps to convince visitors of what really lies beyond the windowpane.

Mr. Hofmann will turn 100 on Wednesday, a milestone to be marked by a symposium in nearby Basel on the chemical compound that he discovered and that famously unlocked the Blakean doors of perception, altering consciousnesses around the world. As the years accumulate behind him, Mr. Hofmann's conversation turns ever more insistently around one theme: man's oneness with nature and the dangers of an increasing inattention to that fact.

"It's very, very dangerous to lose contact with living nature," he said, listing to the right in a green armchair that looked out over frost-dusted fields and snow-laced trees. A glass pitcher held a bouquet of roses on the coffee table before him. "In the big cities, there are people who have never seen living nature, all things are products of humans," he said. "The bigger the town, the less they see and understand nature." And, yes, he said, LSD, which he calls his "problem child," could help reconnect people to the universe.


See also:
- The Albert Hofmann Foundation
- LSD: Completely Personal
- Wikipedia: LSD

Vinessa10:36 AM
January 06, 2006
Astronomer Discovers Star of Bethlehem

Rutgers University professor believes Jupiter, other bodies key to biblical mystery

by Gordon Govier, Christianity Today

from the Molnar Collection ... (click on image to enlarge)

Could the purchase of an ancient coin have led to an important clue about the Star of Bethlehem? The above illustration is a Roman coin from Antioch, Syria which shows the zodiacal sign, Aries the Ram. In trying to understand the meaning behind this coin, Mike Molnar found that Aries was the sign of the Jews. Realizing that this is where ancient stargazers would have watched for the Star of Bethlehem, he embarked on searching for the celestial event that signified the birth of the Messiah in Judea.

Mike Molnar was a lot more interested in expanding his coin collection than figuring out the identity of the Star of Bethlehem when he ran across a 2,000-year-old coin at a coin show back in 1990.

read more »

Vinessa08:05 AM
December 21, 2005
Solstice, Christmas & Holiday Blessings

Christmas Fairy, by www.sallyjean.com ... (click on image to enlarge)

My friend Cheryl does a ritual each winter solstice in honor of the moment of deepest darkness "turning" back towards increasing light. In the ritual, she says that while it's natural to release what we no longer wish to support, it's also a moment to invite new energy in because a seed planted now will germinate and grow into something new as the light increases.

read more »

Vinessa10:35 AM
December 04, 2005
Resistance and Healing

Excerpted from The War of Art, by Steven Pressfield.

Have you ever spent time in Santa Fe? There's a subculture of "healing" there. The idea is that there's something therapeutic in the atmosphere. A safe place to go to get yourself together. There are other places (Marin, Shasta, Hawaii come to mind), usually populated by upper-middle-class people with more time and money than they know what to do with, which a culture of healing also obtains. The concept in all these environments seems to be that one needs to complete their healing before they are able to do their [creative] work.
read more »

Vinessa12:20 PM
November 28, 2005
Celestial Atlases: Art, Myth & Science

"Why did not somebody teach me the constellations, and make me at home in the starry heavens, which are always overhead, and which I don't know to this day?"
-Thomas Carlyle

By special request I'm posting the information below on the many beautiful historical celestial maps available online.

Celestial cartography followed the development of human civilization and is considered a grand synthesis of art, myth and science. Historically, cartographers and astronomers sought increasing scientific exactness along with an ever richer symbolic and artistic representation of the starry sky, and as a result, produced some of the most beautiful books ever published.

Below are some of the best online exhibits showcasing historical celestial atlases.

Out of This World: The Golden Age of the Celestial Atlas
(Linda Hall Library)
Awestruck by the Majesty of the Heavens (Adler Planetarium)
Le Ciel et la Terre (Bibliotheque nationale de France)
Celestial Atlases on the Web (Universiteit Utrecht, Netherlands)
History of Astronomy (Robert Harry van Gent)
Atlas Coelestis (University of Bologna)

I hope you enjoy these resources!

Vinessa02:09 PM
November 23, 2005
Astrologers for something more

Okay, so call me Aquarian... but I'm often struck by how every ad in The Mountain Astrologer is self-promoting. One would think, considering how insightful and healing we consider astrology to be, that at least a small percentage of the ads would be for something greater, for example saving the environment or helping those less fortunate. Because as a wise sage once said:

Outer work without inner work is deaf,
But inner work without outer work is blind.

Occasionally I dream of starting something called the 'Aquarius Moon Foundation', which would be a vehicle by which astrologers could contribute and/or donate, as a group, to some meaningful action in the world. And by so doing we could show the public that astrologers, as a profession and industry, are involved in more than just navel-gazing.

However, until that time, I would like to share my current passion (read more below). Be assured that it's Aquarian in that it's an unpopular cause. But with a little bit of thought I hope you'll see that contributing to this effort could go far in transforming our global 'trance' and leveraging change where the need is greatest. I hope you'll consider joining me and donating whatever, and even a little bit more than, you can.

read more »

Vinessa01:03 PMcomment (5)view »
October 25, 2005
On the river of Rhythm

Hi -- Most of you know I'm a drummer. Or, well, it's in my bones somewhere. I never studied percussion, I simply call my style "drumming like a 3-year old". But many of you have been with me, around the fire at our retreats, beating, soaring... So I thought I would share this fun film clip from Sweden, called "Music for One Apartment and Six Drummers." It takes a little while to load, be patient, and you need sound. But it's proof you can play music anywhere, on anything. Enjoy!

Music for One Apartment and Six Drummers drums.jpg

Vinessa06:17 PM
October 13, 2005
Creation of the World

I discovered an incredible thing recently. Apparently, sometime in the early 1600s, an Irish Catholic bishop named James Ussher actually calculated what he considered to be the exact birthtime of the creation of the World (down to the hour!) by counting backwards from known dates and using the lengths of lives given in the Bible. It's mind blowing! Obviously scientific and rational thinking makes the idea ludicrous!! But apparently the time was taken seriously in many religious circles until as late as the mid-twentieth century.

So I decided to cast a chart! One obvious challenge was to determine location (humor me here). I ended up deciding Basra, Iraq, made the most sense since it's the modern place closest to where scholars believe Eden was.

read more »

Vinessa09:38 PMcomment (0)view »
January 01, 2005
Famous Aquarius Moons
Vinessa01:00 AM
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