Invasives, injurious and poisonous to livestock, contaminators of wool, competitors of crops and pastures, and carriers of disease. Invaders of native ecosystems, foreigners who reduce biodiversity and degrade water quality. Preventers of regeneration who exclude natives. Impactors on human health causing allergies. Can be poisonous. They are declared pests!
These are quotes from Australian government websites about plants that have been demonised and vilified as ‘weeds’. At a recent Weed’s Network Landcare road tour, a member of the audience became very emotional when discussing Tropical soda apple, calling it “Evil”. He urged people to fight this “wicked plant”. The Tropical soda apple in this man’s narrative took on humanlike characteristics capable of intentions, that is, to be ‘evil’. By name-calling, we personalise and characterise plants. We turn plants into beings with personality with whom we can interact in accordance with the character/personality we have assigned to them. By characterising Tropical soda apple as Evil, we then interact with the plant ‘as if’ it is an evil entity and any means we choose in dealing with it is therefore justified. Chemical warfare is justified and collateral damage becomes part of the necessary price. In this paper, I explore plants’ abilities to communicate and have intentions, and whether they are truly ‘evil’, or simply misunderstood. Working within the frameworks of New Materialism, I examine what conversations may be taking place between humans and non-humans.
Evil is live spelt backwards.
The Devil which is lived spelt backwards was considered evil.
So the Devil who is considered evil lived backwards.
Thus are weeds we call ‘evil’, plants living backwards? Well that was a bit of fun. In astrology it is Saturn, close to the word Satan which was once considered a Devil. Liz Greene called her book on Saturn, “Saturn: A New Look at an Old Devil”. This would bring Saturn into the picture when considering plants to be ‘evil weeds’ as well as Capricorn and Aquarius. Other important astrological co-conspirators might be invasive battle infused Mars along with his domains Aries and Scorpio, as well as Neptune for his lack of sense of borders and boundaries and tendency towards poisons and thereby bringing in his Pisces domain. Saturn is well represented by the Capricorn Goat, The Great Pan. Pan gives us panic and in this we can see Capricorn as the Sea Goat. The Sea Goat Character of Capricorn finds Capricorn sharing some emotional Piscean traits.
Satan’s goat like image is similar in appearance to both Pan and the Goat of Capricorn and all three are credited with tremendous erotic powers. Strangely enough this a commonly despised characteristic of weeds, that is, their vast reproductive powers. This makes ‘weeds’ erotic, lusty and ‘loose’ without decorum or as sense of boundaries or limit. Pan is the god of the wild, shepherds and flocks, nature of mountain wilds, hunting and rustic music, and companion of the nymphs. He has the hindquarters, legs, and horns of a goat, in the same manner as a faun or satyr. Pan is also the god of fields, groves, and wooded glens and is connected to fertility and the season of spring – therefore perhaps a more youthful Saturn.
There are two stories of Pan’s lineage, one as the son of Zeus and twin of Arcas, and the other as a son of Cronus. This fits well with the image of Capricorn as a Sea Goat, because it is from Zeus (or as we know him in astrology – Jupiter just happens to be the traditional ruler of Pisces) gives Capricorn his fish-tail and Cronus his connection to shepherds, wild nature and earthly lustiness.
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Neptune the planet that shrouds the truth in its many veils of secrecy as the ruler of chemicals and poisons would be the planet that rules Monsanto’s extremely ‘popular’ Roundup glyphosate based herbicide. Yesterday I received the following message in relation to our right as consumers to know what is in our food and the right to decide what we ingest, ie the labelling of GMO products;
“How many lies will $17.1 million buy? Enough to sink another GMO labeling initiative?
Opponents of I-522, Washington State’s initiative to require mandatory labeling of GMOs, hope so. They’re banking on their ability to broadcast enough lies, often enough, to enough voters, to defeat I-522…Our opponents are desperate. And filthy rich. A dangerous combination.
Their lies are familiar to us. But maybe not so to millions of voters who are hearing about GMOs for the first time.
Who are “they”? The NO on I-522 campaign is funded by Monsanto. Dow. Dupont. Bayer. BASF. And the Grocery Manufacturers Association (GMA). The GMA has kicked in $7.2 million on behalf of food companies like Pepsi, General Mills, Coca-Cola, Kraft and others – cowardly companies that are funneling their donations through the GMA to avoid the kind of bad publicity that came raining down on them last year, when they publicly donated to defeat a GMO labeling initiative in California.”
Pluto abducting Persephone
The above statement has Neptune and Pluto written all over it. When it comes to veiling the truth, Neptune is always close by and the invisible structures of power are more often than not supported by Pluto from his invisible underworld kingdom.
GMO labelling is an interesting issue. That fact that the powers to be want to so desperately hide GMO information from the public really doesn’t instil a sense of confidence in their own product. Or is it that they believe consumers are so ‘dumb’ that we should be protected from ourselves? Either way it doesn’t make me feel warm and tingly to the oppressors of labelling. It just doesn’t make sense to have this information held back from people especially in the ‘enlightened’ and ‘let’s all be grown-up here’ 21st century. If we are expected to be adults and not be parented by governments (all very important Saturn aspects) then we need to be ‘trusted’ with the necessary information to make adult informed decisions.
For anyone wondering what herbicides have to do with GMOs the answer is billions of dollars in increased herbicide sales. Many GMO crops are designed to be Roundup Ready. What this means is; crops which have been grown with genetically modified seeds to be Roundup Ready can be sprayed more often and with more toxic pesticides than conventional (non-modified) crops. The means increased pesticides use/sale and more dollars in Monsanto’s pocket.
Next: How is this reflected in the Uranus Aries square Pluto in Capricorn transit.
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There is a new player on the academic playing field. It is call New Materialism. New Materialism is basically a reworking of ancient animism. Animism is the worldview that non-human entities (animals, plants, and inanimate objects or phenomena), possess a spiritual essence or a soul. The revitalisation of animism has come about in part as a reaction to oppression of both women and nature resulting from the privilege of the rational mode of understanding the world. The rational mode of consciousness is also associated with the masculine or that of the more powerful arm of a dualism. What’s great for astrology, ecology, women and other oppressed entities is the ascription of ‘mind’ to things which were considered ‘mindless’ of less than that which was given privilege through virtue of association with the superior rational/masculine/master.
The theory of New Materialism means that the planets, the signs, the houses and aspects are alive and imbued with spirit, mind, soul – they are beings in their own right. Something astrology have always known.
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Regardless of the issue at hand, any astrological exploration always needs to begin with The Holy Trinity of Astrology. The Holy Trinity of Astrology is the sign of the Sun, the Moon and the Ascendant. Why these three? Very briefly because; the Sun represents where we feel our urge to shine, the Moon what makes us feel secure and the sign on the Ascendant represents our Life and our approach to Life.
In the chart under exploration we find the client has the Sun in Gemini, the Moon in Aries and the Ascendant sign is Libra. Instantly we are know, that this individual’s energy is very Yang. Yang is the ‘sunny side of the mountain’. What this means is that this is an active day-time energy as opposed to the ‘shady side of the mountain’ which is the Yin, night-time, restive and attracting energy.
The Yang energy urges the individual into action and given that the Sun is in intellectual Gemini a lot of this outward impulse of energy may be directed towards thinking and communicating as well as finding ways to connect with the world. This is even true of the reclusive Gemini sitting somewhere hidden away behind their computer. They will certainly be active in connecting with the world, be it through their stories, others’ stories, the internet or any other way that brings them into contact with the world.
The God who sits on the throne of Gemini is Mercury, the Messenger God. Mercury as the Messenger God is a crosser of boundaries as he carries communications between the gods of the various realms, from the heights of Olympus, to the depths of Neptune’s watery world and all the way to Hades, the Underworld of Pluto. This is a symbolic representation to illustrate Mercury’s ruler ship of the mind which contains aspects both known and unknown to us.
Combining a Gemini Sun with an Aries Moon, we can say that the individual has a need to shine in such areas as thinking, talking, communicating and connecting, new ideas, initiatives, or projects – Aries. The Gemini-Aries combination is great for coming up with and beginning new projects but the Earth and Fixed signs are needed to bring their ideas and initiated projects to fruition, along with a good strong Mars. While Aries may be considered ‘a doer’, this mainly relates to getting things started, it is the Earth signs that tend to do the ongoing ‘doing’ and the fixed signs that keep things going that have been begun under Aries and other Cardinal signs.
The Ascendant represents our Life and our approach to life. So the question becomes how will this individual apply their new and innovative ideas to their life? Once again we have a Yang outward moving energy, which like Gemini is an Air sign – the element of the mind and all relationships and like Aries is a Cardinal sign; great at initiating, especially initiating relationships . This person would therefore have an urge to form relationships and to put their ideas out there in the world. We find that the Queen of Libra, Venus is in Gemini along with Mercury the Lord of Gemini and that both are in the Eighth House of deep life issues, so there could be a strong urge to work in depth psychology or other deep explorations of the workings of the psyche and relationships.
With the Ascendant in Libra this individual approaches life with a need for peace and fairness. The challenge with a Libra Ascendant is how to balance personal Aries needs for independence and a certain amount of self-focus with Libra’s need for taking other people into account. Having two out of three aspects in the Air element focuses the interest on social matters. While there are many possible scenarios and individual reactions in how these aspects may play out the underlying themes remain the same.
The scenarios and individual reactions are indicators of how the individual has responded to these concerns. For instance if the individual feels unable to make a decision or take action without first taking into account every possible consideration about another person, it shows that the prospect of taking their own personal needs into consideration is absolutely terrifying to them. There are several issues that could result from this, firstly not getting their needs met, secondly feeling resentment at everyone in their life because their needs haven’t being met, or third expecting other people to meet their needs for them because they met their needs for them and again feeling that Mars anger and resentment that the ‘favour’ hasn’t been repaid back (I think that at just sounded like R.D. Laing’s book called Knots).
So let’s try to untangle it as much as possible; what we have here is a theme of tension between meeting personal needs for autonomy Moon in Aries and meeting the perceived needs of everyone else in their life – Ascendant in Libra, with the Sun in Gemini expressing supporting views for both positions. This all before we even look at the Houses of Work and Career.
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Staying with the building blocks of astrology we know that Taurus is an attracting Yin energy and her element is Earth. These two aspects of Taurus function through what is called in astrology a ‘Fixed’ quality. All Earth signs in astrology are of the Yin/attracting energy the difference is in how the quality of this combination functions. The other two Yin-Earth signs in astrology are Virgo and Capricorn. What makes them different from each other is the quality or nature of their function or purpose and their ruling deity.
The Yin energy is an attracting and persuasive energy. It draws its needs and desires towards itself. It could be likened to a flower that through its beauty as well as the resources it offers entices birds and insects to itself in order to do its bidding. Yin energy is similar to the Earth as it pulls what it needs to itself. With the help of gravity all Earth’s needs are pushed towards her – rain falls down on her as do the seeds which she nurtures to maturity.
Of all the Earth signs Taurus is the earthiest because it is also a fixed sign.
In the cycle of life, the sign of Aries represents the archetype of beginnings. The Aries drive provides the seed with the energy and urge needed for life – for the force that is essential for that first sprout of life to break through the hard protective casing of the seed to emerge. Once Aries has done its job and the seed has sprouted it becomes vital for the seed to find a safe and nurturing place in which to grow, this is the task of Taurus. Taurus as they say is the ‘salt of the Earth’ – it is that safe haven in which new growth or new ideas which have been formed and given life under Aries can now find a place to take hold and establish themselves. Without the ‘womb’ of the Earth as represented by Taurus that which Aries has begun would very quickly die. This is why Taurus is a fixed sign because it essentially fixes into place what Aries has begun.
Taurus is also a rich sign full of valuable resources which are buried in the earth or which grow out of the earth. But Taurus can also be good at burying what it doesn’t like deep into the bowels of the earth, for Taurus is ruled by Venus the Goddess of Love and where possible she prefers peace to battle. However, Venus is also the Goddess of Battle and if pushed too far there is little to rival the raging Bull which is the symbol of Taurus.
So begins Taurus’ heroic journey in search of what needs establishing and fixing into place in order that it may grow, survive and prosper. Some of the archetypal images for Taurus are the Great Earth Mother, the Master Builder or the Banker . These are just a few of the ways in which the Sun whose distinctive purpose is to shine finds fulfilment and expression when travelling through the sign of Taurus.
Taurus as the Banker in ‘to grow your money’ – anything that needs growing see Taurus.
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Using the building blocks of astrology we know that the story of Aries consists of an active Yang energy, the element of fire and that these two energies are expressed through the function of cardinality. We also know that the deity which is embodied in the Aries archetype is the Roman God of /Love/Lust/Desire and War. Beginning with the active Yang component of Aries we know that the Aries archetype is about going after what it wants in a direct and open fashion. Aries sees its target or object of desire and jumps on its ‘White Horse’ which today would most likely be a sporty red car and charges. Aries is a doer.
The next part of the Aries personality is made up of the Fire element. The element of Fire is as it implies, full of life, energy, passion, desire and is the spark which ignites the creative spirit – the urge to do, to be and to create. Next comes in the cardinal energy and describes for what purpose or function this passionate and active energy will be used for.
The cardinal energy is an energy of initiation therefore an important purpose or function of Aries is to use its powerhouse of, drive and passion to initiate and start new activities, projects, events and so on. Taking these three elements together it becomes clear that the Aries archetype is full of get up and go. Thus the purpose of the Aries energy is to ignite with fire and passion that which needs to be born, begun, commenced or started. So begins the Aries’ heroic journey in search of what needs igniting, initiating or instigating which is why this sign is often called the pioneer, the explorer, or the entrepreneur or the Crusader of old. These are the some of the ways in which the Sun whose distinctive purpose is to shine finds fulfilment and expression when travelling through the sign of Aries.
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An exploration of the Solar hero’s journey in search of identity as he/she travels through the twelve archetypal signs of the zodiac.
How does the Hero’s journey in search of self, play out through the different archetypes of the zodiac? Here we are looking at the sun signs of the zodiac and how the Sun symbolises the Heroic search in all of us for knowledge and self-recognition of our identity. Starting our journey with Aries as the first sign of the zodiac.
Aries the first sign of the zodiac is often identified with the energy of Spring. However as noted in earlier articles this analogy can become problematic in the Southern hemisphere where Spring coincides with Libra and Aries becomes an Autumn sign. Thus putting aside the seasonal analogies another way to begin an exploration of the Hero’s journey through the zodiac will be through the building blocks of the sun signs.
The building blocks of the sun signs can be briefly divided into four aspects. These are called the principle cosmic energies, the four elements in nature, and the three qualities of function. The principle cosmic energies are divided into attractive and active energies often referred to as masculine and feminine, Yin and Yang, day and night and all forms of dualism in nature and the cosmos. The elements of nature consist of fire, earth, air and water.
The qualities are functions or ways of using the elements and the principle cosmic energies – of these there are three; cardinal, fixed and mutable. The fourth major building block of understanding sun signs is through the God or Goddess who presides over, or who in psychological parlance is the embodiment of that sun sign. Western Astrology uses the names of the Roman pantheon of Gods and Goddesses as well as the stories from Greek mythology. The qualities, elements and principle cosmic energies will be further explained as we continue our search and exploration of self through the sun’s journey against the background of the zodiac.
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