Saturday, June 21, 2014


The deepest depression I’ve experienced in a number of years foreshadowed my Birthday. There was no detectable reason to be any more depressed than usual. It could have been about a number of things but I knew that it wasn’t. Although I could feel depressed about PQ’s illness, my disappointment with myself for not doing more with my 72 years, our arrival at this time in our lives without resources to have our fix of Arizona, take a vacation or even get the windshield on the car fixed, it wasn’t about any of these things. It went much deeper and didn’t feel truly personal. All of a sudden, the cloudy veil was  removed from all the things I know are not right but nevertheless have to live with from the current state of world affairs, the human mistreatment of the earth and its creatures, and not least the way we humans mistreat each other.  Doom and gloom seemed to be setting in for a long stay, and yet I recognize from past experience that moods don’t last (at least not for Gemini’s with Cancer rising) and that something important was trying to move into consciousness while something else was trying to divert it. There was an inner war going on and all I could do was observe. It even dimmed my eyesight and slowed my reactions. Heavy grey smog had descended on the world. 

Hummingbird Moth, taken with the dead iPhone
There was a trickster element to this experience as well. The worse I felt, the more things went wrong, as if the gods teasing me. The climax was the day two checks bounced when my SS check came in three days late and my iPhone died. I replaced the iPhone but it was three months beyond its insurance expiration date.  The Verizon Store didn’t have any iPhone 4’s so I had to upgrade to the new 5s. For a couple of hours and several hundred dollars more on the groaning credit card, I felt as if nothing would ever be good again. Then my mood unexpectadly shifted sideways. At first, I thought it was denial because the downward speed of our financial situation had just picked up considerably and it would be easy to move into an “everything is going to hell anyway, why not enjoy riding out the storm till our boat capsizes and we all drown,” state of mind. However, I saw a dim light coming up on the other side of my mountain of woes. It shown a light on something long hidden that was completely outside my conscious experience and conditioned expectations.

Certainly, I could blame misfortune on the planets. There are some challenging transits at this time, but the planets only tell us about certain energies that are more intense than other energies and in what part of our life they may apply pressure.  Would it change the life of a mouse, or a stone? Maybe, but changes are always possible. If you have a wall of bricks that are carelessly stacked, it will go down first if an earthquake hits. Challenging transits tend to expose the weak places in our psychic, social and even physical structure.

When PQ came back from errands this morning he told me that one of our headlights had burned out. Thus, another expense arises, although this time it’s a moderate one. Everything is relative. I didn’t get more depressed with this one. Now, I’m beginning to catch on that there is a message.  I can’t put my finger on the exact point that begs insight but there is something very important hidden in this seeming chain of crisis. I think this one goes very deep and into one of my oldest deepest layers. It seems to be time to rebuild starting with the foundation.

Circumstantially, cast away to the outer edges of family, school, church and later the conventional adult world of nine to five, I eventually identified myself as an outcast. At fifteen, I quit school in a state of nervous collapse and found myself falling into an endless hole of impenetrable blackness. To borrow a quote from Charles Dickens, “It was the best of times; it was the worst of times.” The best part was discovering an entirely new empowering world of amazing explosive insights bursting through the heavy darkness like a fabulous display of creative pyrotechnics.  On the other side was a lonely colorless cramped world of drudge and grunge, a continuous cloudy day. There was a wise invisible guide who showed me the places I needed to go and books I needed to read, guided me to study art history, anthropology, theology, psychology, classical music, history, sacred geometry, and much more, all topics I had never heard of just a year or two earlier. My skills of observation suddenly bloomed. Although my heroes were eclectic, it began with the discovery of Lao Tzu and Chuang Tzu. After that, I followed a very strange path for a teenage girl in the late 50’s one strewn with sharp but gorgeous jewels, and one I took alone.

While one side of my life was heady, the other side was the barefoot gardener and a burgeoning cook exploring the exotic world of French cuisine, of herbs and wine. If I made a soup, I needed only to run out to our large garden with mud squishing between my bare toes to take carrots, onions, green beans or peas. My poor parents must have been terrified and nonplussed. The daughter they had known was gone. We lived in the same house on different schedules. I read, painted and brooded deep into the night long after they were asleep and woke up long after they’d gone to work. During the first years I went barefoot winter and summer. I wore one pair of jeans until they began to fall apart. I glued them together and covered the holes with duct tape.  

Part of being an outcast and yet free to think and feel as spirit lead me was staying away from conventional routes. To make up for lack of flesh and blood teachers, I followed the discipline learned from my favorite authors and developed a strong critical aptitude. Yet, the disadvantage of being an recluse was that  I did not know how to navigate that world from which I’d escaped. When I finally ventured out to the job market, I learned how to pretend I knew what I was doing until I did, but always felt like a fake in a  world I didn’t fit and dependent on a job that I sometimes didn’t approve of.  

Believing that monetary success requires a life enslaved to golden chains, or in my case silver-plated plastic chains was a constant downer. I literally felt like a slave or indentured servant. Now it’s emerging that I still live with the unconscious assumption that being an outcast automatically means living on the outer edge in seclusion and poverty. I was often a helpful alien willing to do what was needed while never officially joining the system or benefiting from its perks.
Squeaky thinks he's the new king.

While writing the previous paragraph,I'm reminded of my relationship with men and cats.  Cats are marginal members of our civilized human world with two paws in and the other two out. I often have dreams about rescuing a cat lost and terrified in some urban setting. I have to protect it from its instinctive wild reaction to an alien system. As for men, I have a history of being with someone who is far from conventional but who handles himself with chutzpa. This is a person who gets away with what I don’t believe I can get away with.  Also, my men generally like to live somewhat indulgently. Given a choice, they opt for the top brand and the gourmet menu.

The big picture is that I don’t have confidence in my right to be as I am. My nerve fails when confronting that big world that seems so unforgiving and menacing.  And that friends, is the big insight. It could be that when I truly honor my right to participate in human society the money situation will reflect the change.  It’s time to be reborn, or more likely simply believe that I really was born in this world. 

To be continued. This is just the beginning.


Saturday, June 14, 2014

Crazy Wisdom

I will start with a warning that I’m using a lot of astro-talk in this blog. That in itself is curious because I haven’t been seriously following the planets for quite a while.  I used to be pretty good at it. Then a gradual loss of interest came with years of numbing routine and my window on both the world and sky dimmed with accumulated haze.

We see a lot of the Rez,beautiful even through a dirty windshield.
The week started off OK, despite being cold and windy in the morning, and then went south. Even Microsoft Word is misbehaving and so is this computer. At Walmart, there were no jeans my size, and  the pair I have is wearing out. It was the third store I’d tried in two days, lite on cash; I’ve avoided a regular department store, which we don’t have in Taos anyway. The message from all four directions is, “don’t try to move in any direction or acquire anything just stay put.” Although we rented out the Rez  house and now have a bit more income, we are still walking backward, just slower. I feel the presence of Saturn breathing down my neck, I have lessons on endurance and frugality to learn and there will be no leniency. Family members needing a boost to get back on track, and minor repairs that the rented house has needed for a long time, took another bite out of the proceeds. An invisible vexation buzzes like a hungry mosquito, just out of swatting range, waiting to suck our blood.

Saturn that grim taskmaster of the zodiac just won’t be satisfied and to my surprise, has a trickster side. Just when we have pruned our excesses and balanced income and outgo, a new hole in our cash bucket appears.

Meanwhile the weather is being erratic, although so far we haven’t had the wind and hail that eastern New Mexico experienced over the past few days, nevertheless it’s possibly a sign not to expect normal right now. It’s dawning on me that I’m supposed to be still, wait for further instructions, and quit flopping around like a stranded fish trying to jump back into the old stream. Maybe it isn’t flowing in the direction I’m supposed to be going.

I’ve been immensely sad for no identifiable reason and life seems like a handful of jewels slipping through my uncoordinated fingers while nostalgia gives me an emotionally laden tour of lost times both good and bad. My birthday is coming up and that might account for some of this mawkishness. 

Astrologically, the sun is passing through my solar 12th house, home of the hidden and blocked aspects of life and a threshold between the manifest and unmanifest worlds. This regularly occurs in that month preceding one’s Birthday. Since I was born with the Sun, Mercury, Moon and Jupiter all in my natal 12th house, I live there much of the time anyhow. 
This guy came in and made himself at home.
I'm afraid he's homeless and plans to stay.

Now and then, I binge on awful possibilities, perhaps a Cancer Moon rising trait, but then I get it out of my system and life goes on. PQ sometimes takes my mood swings too much to heart and I’m sure it doesn’t look good from the sidelines but I’ve learned that I get some of my best insights while trudging through deep psychic sludge. While life is flowing, I tend dance along the surface.

Once in a while I have a genuine aha moment, yet when reading old journal entries, I see the same insight discovered and rediscovered. It’s disheartening to find that I’ve been chasing my tail for so long. However, while meditating on this 12th house thing a few days ago something entirely fresh came in.  The 12th house is about unconscious and unfulfilled possibilities and their repression in the outer world. A person with heavy 12th house energy may carry the denied and unrecognized possibilities both good and bad of an entire family and culture. This in turn brings recollection of something I read years ago about the Old Hebrew prophets and how the very circumstances of their lives and deaths embodied the prophesy they came to deliver. The Lakota Heyoka or Contrary medicine men had a similar role, as does the Crazy Wisdom personified by some Tibetan Buddhist monks.

From Wikipedia:
  In Lakota mythology, Heyókȟa is also a spirit of thunder and lightning. He is said to use the wind as sticks to beat the drum of thunder. His emotions are portrayed opposite the norm; he laughs when he is sad and cries when he is happy, cold makes him sweat and heat makes him shiver. In art, he is depicted as having two horns, which marks him as a hunting spirit.

    When a vision comes from the thunder beings of the West, it comes with terror like a thunder storm; but when the storm of vision has passed, the world is greener and happier; for wherever the truth of vision comes upon the world, it is like a rain. The world, you see, is happier after the terror of the storm... you have noticed that truth comes into this world with two faces. One is sad with suffering, and the other laughs; but it is the same face, laughing or weeping... as lightning illuminates the dark, for it is the power of lightning that heyokas have.
    —Black Elk

And, what does the Heyoka hunt? Perhaps, it’s the chance to down those demons who program us humans to scurry about like confused ants.  We 12th house people notoriously have one foot in each of two worlds. It’s as I imagine being half-born would be. Perhaps that’s why I’ve never learned which reality to acknowledge.  I was waiting at the gate, ready to enter and the gate only opened halfway.  It’s beginning to awaken that my troubles dealing with the material world are the result of confusion about which side of the gate, I should take for real. Of course, they both are as real as we live them.  

Something different is about to happen. I can feel it coming, it isn’t in my thought repertoire, not even in my repertoire of dreads, and that’s a good thing.