Planet Waves

New York, May 19, 2016 | View as Webpage | Order Your Spring Reading

Ground of the Earth, Womb of the Feminine

Dear, dear Eric

My thanks and appreciation for your thoughtful, inspiring piece.

What to do in a society where so many women are so injured...broken...angry at sex? Your words about guilt, shame and fear evoke sadness. Blame is crippling, but as men do penance, flagellating themselves for the alleged crime of lust, women do not heal.

Planet Waves
Susanne Vincent at home in New Zealand.
As a 68-year-old Taurean woman, my sense in regard to healing the wounds is that yes -- the feminine power must be returned: it's not just personal, but societal, spiritual, sexual, cultural and political. The feminine principle is also our planetary mother, her all-inclusive, all-accommodating, nature/Nature has been raped indeed, predated, exploited, ravaged...

The feminine isn't a concept, and as you know it is not exclusive to a gender. In our human experience, her fundamental quality is in fact reflected in our openness, our ability to open fully and relish wholly, with primordial, pleasure-bathed yesness, the all-embracing nature of being, at its moist and glorious core.

The world isn't currently rousing us to open. The culture of fear (particularly and very much 9/11 onward) is eating into our flesh, tensing our tendons, our buttocks, our shoulders, that tight little place at the small of the back that says NO -- No, don't harm me!

While in Pacific Island villages men and women sashay like Marilyn, our bodies are getting more rigid. Our kids don't leap bareback onto ponies any more, race and tangle in the wild, roll around getting bruised to learn about their bodies any more. Who leaps, does acrobatics, relishes that wildborn strength? Whoever even gets DIRTY now in our antibacterial fortress lives?

When there is no access to the rippling, shimmering sensations of the body, when the mind can't explore the body, adore the body, devour and caress and merge with space inside us and each other, then how can sexual intimacy happen? What happened to long, voluptuous bodies luxuriating against other long, warm bodies of skin-covered physicality?

Are we just going to specify some contract of planned mutual exchange, substitute a strictly controlled ingredients list and impose penalties, instead of simply devouring the whole cake? To create transactional sexual contracts through lawyers, like pre-nuptial agreements? Commodify sexual connection? Make a balance sheet out of this interchange, based on the principle of withhold and conditionality?

Feeling that the only way to be safe is to protect ourselves from unscheduled experience (!), our whole society has gone litigious. Violence per se has in fact only been seen as a specific crime during the past 200 years of our history in the West -- you could be hanged for stealing a loaf, but bashing the owner on the head wasn't seen as material.

Yet nowadays, touching anyone anywhere but on the arms is seen as molestation. This is an insane polarisation. (BTW -- What is this meticulous armouring against each other in the West while there has never been so much unbridled carnage and brutality carried out with impunity by the State?)

There can be no sexual intimacy, no wild dance, in the presence of such a lot of fear. Somehow the prohibitions must soften; the sense of injury, of 'transactional injustice', of being harmed, used, invaded, or even being physically wounded, must dissolve. When we say, 'you can touch this, but not that, you can go here, but not there...', we've placed a limit on being willing to simply bathe in another being and allow them to bathe in us; for real connection, there has to be trust in each other, and -- assuming we apply certain basics of risk management -- to trust is a voluntary endeavour.

As the great guru Chogyam Trungpa said (somewhere): When are we going to open, really? Defining safety in terms of security guards, rather than in terms of our own resilient power, or in fundamental trust for life's due process, it's as though we've created an edict against opening, with opening unconditionally as the ultimate social faux-pas.

And of course, you can't say it, Mr. Francis -- as one of those beings with a dick, strictly governed by protocols of correctness, it's not appropriate for you to say that actually women must heal by opening again...and again...and again.

That actually it's about all women and all men working with our fear of openness, nakedness and authentic connection, working kindly with the monsters we've constructed to prove how hurt we've been; to give up on wanting our pain recognised and revered; to give up revenge, to drop the karmic debt -- just drop it, flat on the ground, and leave it there. To do this, is probably the most important part of our spiritual path, and to do this, at this time, is almost certainly the most nourishing thing we could do for this planet right now.

Yes, let's start with the body. Get the hell away from the keyboard and virtual world. If we stay in the virtual world too long, we will look around and find that the planet has left.

Stand on good earth with naked feet, feel and bask in the energy that we were born with, enjoy our body moving, swim naked whenever we can, and find that deep pelvic space, its massive reservoir of strength, its deep organic power. For women, understand that this is yours, no man gave it to you just because he goes in there, or because he desires you. This place is not a marketplace, it's part of the ground of our being.

Let's love men. When a man finds his feminine side, he can find yours. Bless the servants of the Goddess -- adore their wrinkly balls and their unsanitized trainers! Don't close down. If the only way we can all save this unholy mess is to revert to our authentic natures as individuals and as the full potential of our species, then the feminine must be repossessed, along with the oozing, pulsating reality of our teeming world.

And then, I think something magic can occur. Gentil parfait knights have always served the grail. When there is no powerful feminine, the warriors have no Madonna, no Kwan Yin, no primordial principles to serve. When she is present, maybe the raw, Klingon 'blindly bomb them to bits' aggression can flip into Protector Principle mode, draw the sword of justice, defend the weak and bring the proactive, decisive vision that we so urgently and direly need here right now.

This masculine force that creates the content (which of course women have in very good measure themselves) must always refer for its map and inspiration to the container, the 'vessel', the context, the relevance, the profound truths of connection and inter-being that frame and constitute the actual space in which we live. This is wisdom -- the feminine principle. This ground of earth, society, ocean and microbiome, is the nourishing, life-enabling container of our existence -- the womb of the feminine. Serving her, we serve everyone's survival.

Politician, president, warrior, policeperson, adjudicator as Earth-Protectors; People-Protectors; Guardians of Sacred Space?

Oh yes indeed.

Let's make it so!

With love,
Susanne Vincent

Planet Waves (ISSN 1933-9135) is published each Tuesday and Thursday evening in Kingston, New York, by Planet Waves, Inc. Core community membership: $197/year. Editor and Publisher: Eric Francis Coppolino. Web Developer: Anatoly Ryzhenko. Designer: Lizanne Webb. Finance: Victoria Pomante. Astrology Editor: Amanda Painter. Astrology Fact Checker: Len Wallick. Copy Editor and Fact Checker: Jessica Keet. Outreach Co-ordinator: Victoria Bodge. Client Services: Amy Elliott. Media Consultant: Andrew Marshall McLuhan. Research, Writing and Editing: In addition to those listed above, Planet Waves is produced by a team consisting of Fe Bongolan, Judith Gayle, Kelly Janes, Amanda Moreno and Carol van Strum.


Full Moon, Mercury Direct and Choosing Empathy

For Eric's video presentation on this weekend, check the new Planet Waves TV.

Dear Friend and Reader:

You'll be happy to know that Mercury finally stations direct in Taurus at 9:20 am EDT on Sunday. Before you breathe that sigh of relief and go buy the new car/grill/phone you've been eyeing, however, remember that the days around a Mercury station are often the most challenging part (they can also offer key pieces of missing information).

So that's a reminder to take things slowly and consciously, especially anytime you get behind the wheel this weekend.

Planet Waves
Even Mother Nature knows that being grounded doesn't mean not changing. Photo by Amanda Painter.
Along with the usual advice to read the fine print (twice) and notice whether you have your keys with you, the part about alert driving at legal speeds is especially important this weekend. See, we also have a Full Moon brewing. Mars is involved in that aspect directly, adding a need to stay aware of impulses based in anger, impatience or ego/resentment.

Even if you don't have the urge to cut someone off on the highway to 'make a point', you'll want to watch for that kind of behavior in others, and temper your reaction to them. I suspect that since Mars is still retrograde, how you handle your reactions and your beliefs about what constitutes 'justified' behavior are important for your own safety.

About that Full Moon: the Sun enters Gemini Friday at 10:36 am EDT. The very next day, the Moon enters Sagittarius (where it conjoins Mars).

A few hours later, the Moon opposes the Sun to make a Full Moon. This is the Sagittarius Full Moon, exact at 5:14 pm EDT Saturday.

Now, the question is, given the confrontational nature of a Full Moon, and given the potentially scattered or glitch-y tendencies of Mercury stationing direct, how do you go beyond basic mental housekeeping and safety precautions to actually use this energy creatively?

Yes, there is tension in the chart. But the solution to tension is not paralysis. The solution to tension is making a decision when faced with a choice -- and noticing what you use to guide that decision.

You might find yourself guided by empathy as part of your natural tendencies. For most people, however, empathy must be a conscious choice. Look around at all the horrible things that people are doing to each other, including 'casual' cruelty online, and you'll get a better sense of just how often empathy is not chosen. When faced width someone who needs some understanding and assistance, what do you do?

Planet Waves
Photo by Amanda Painter.
I suspect that for most of us, news reports about the inhumane treatment of Syrian refugees or yet another natural disaster are totally overwhelming. It can be hard to know what to do beyond making a donation.

One friend of mine, faced with a feeling of helplessness toward the Syrian situation, remembered Mister Rogers' famous advice to "look for the helpers" in scary situations. She now blogs regularly on a widely read forum, featuring 'the helpers' who are doing what they can to assist the refugees, and points out ways that readers can get involved and know that their efforts, money or supplies will go to those who need it most.

That's just one example. I'm sure you can think of others, some of which might be very direct and personal for you: the homeless person you see on the corner as you walk to work each day; the co-worker struggling with personal issues or an oversized workload; a friend who expresses that she is feeling cut off from friends lately and Facebook just is not cutting it.

Speaking of which: the very technology that lets us know about global suffering or a friend's rough day also allows us to detach from it under the guise of 'sharing awareness' of an issue. Re-posting an article tells others about it, but what else can you do? Typing a heart emoticon lets someone know their pain has been seen, but it's not a phone conversation or an actual, in-the-flesh hug.

Beyond the Sun moving into Gemini and the Moon into Sagittarius this weekend, we have a lot of planets in mutable signs right now (Gemini, Virgo, Sagittarius and Pisces). That emphasis is going to continue for quite a while. In fact, Eric describes in his Planet Waves FM broadcast for this week how this Sagittarius Full Moon and the Gemini New Moon in two weeks are connected -- and have an important message.

One of the key traits of the mutable signs is flexibility. That is, that ability to move from one state of being (or thought, or action) to another as necessary.

Have you ever thought about the difference between being grounded versus being resistant for its own sake? You could say that being grounded places you firmly in reality, whereas being resistant to change or to making a choice or to taking action actually detaches you from reality.

You are being asked to make a decision. Are you resisting? Can you make the choice of empathy, and can you bring it from the 'virtual' into actual reality?

Yours & truly,

Amanda Painter


Planet Waves
Lee Naimo, Jordan Raskopoulos and Benny Davis (L-R) -- known as Axis of Awesome -- introduce a change one of the members has made to the audience at the Sydney Comedy Festival at the Giant Dwarf theatre in Redfern, New South Wales, Australia -- but it's not what you'd expect. Image: video still.
You Do See the Elephant, Right?

By Amanda Painter

Only a few days left in the current Mercury retrograde (it stations direct on Sunday). That's still enough time for the trickster to do its thing. Sometimes, however, we all need a little Coyote medicine to help us shift perspective -- especially if that shift helps us to see our blind spots or hang-ups better.

If we get to experience that shift with a laugh and a dose of compassion, all the better.

Enter the band Axis of Awesome and their song "The Elephant in the Room." (And yes, their name is a play on George Dubya's famous "Axis of Evil" phrase.)

I don't want to spoil the surprise. But I will say that this Australian 'comedy rock' trio tweaks common reactions people have to transgendered individuals in a truly fun, beautiful and hilariously indirect way.


Planet Waves
Bob Dylan from the Blonde on Blonde era. Photo: Rolling Stone.
This Week on Planet Waves FM
Twin Charts: Sagittarius Full Moon, Gemini New Moon

Dear Friend and Listener:

In this week's edition of Planet Waves FM [play episode here], I welcome the Sun to Gemini (it arrives Friday, May 20), and read the charts for the forthcoming Sagittarius Full Moon and the Gemini New Moon. You can see those charts here.

Planet Waves
Eric Francis, host of Planet Waves FM.
I give a visual version of this presentation in the current Planet Waves TV.

As part of that welcome, our music is provided by the quintessential Gemini himself, Bob Dylan, to celebrate the 50th anniversary of one of his masterpieces, Blonde on Blonde.

In the astrology portion at the top of the show, I describe the relationship between a slow-moving pattern in the background -- Jupiter, Saturn and Neptune in a T-square pattern -- and then overlay the Full Moon chart, which adds many other points.

All of these planets are in the mutable signs Gemini, Virgo, Sagittarius and Pisces. The message is hang loose and give yourself permission to change your mind when you get new information, or have a new idea.

In the second segment, I read a reader letter from Susanne Vincent, who is responding to last week's edition of Planet Waves.

In the third segment of the program, I read the chart for May 16, 1966 -- the day that Blonde on Blonde and Pet Sounds by the Beach Boys came out, and the day that the "Cultural Revolution" in China began. This was not the friendly kind of culture party we had in the U.S. but rather the beginning of a holocaust of artists, intellectuals and dissidents.

In the last segment, I read the lyrics and talk about the title of Dylan's "Stuck Inside of Mobile With the Memphis Blues Again."

We are sponsored by your memberships to Planet Waves. Check them out here, including our how Horoscope Lover level.

With love,

Get Inside the Planet Waves Boutique, Get Inside Your Self

Ever find yourself wondering what your life would be like if you could just simply understand it?

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We try so hard to come to terms with ourselves, our relationships, our career and sometimes it's all just too much to get a hold of.

Step inside the Planet Waves Boutique and allow Eric Francis to guide you through to a new level of understanding.

Eric's wisdom, dedicated time, energy and love are all put into the classes and readings here in our boutique, specially made to help you find the guidance and support that you may be searching for.

It's time to take charge of your own life and find peace within yourself. Visit the Planet Waves Boutique today and let your inner spirit soar.

Fed Up With it All? Try This.

Are you feeling frustrated with our current retrogrades? Do you need a new way to look at how your life is going this season?
Look no further: Eric's 2016 Spring Reading will give you the scoop on how to work with retrograde Mars entering Scorpio next week, plus Uranus conjunct Eris (exact in two weeks). It will even help you get a grip on Mercury as it stations direct this weekend.
Planet Waves
Let a little sunshine into your life with the 2016 Spring Reading by Eric Francis. Photo by Amanda Painter.
After all, we still have a couple weeks of 'echo' phase before Mercury works out all its kinks. And Eric has been making the most of retrogrades his whole career.
It's not too late to make use of this set of clear, direct, jargon-free readings this season -- whether you buy just one or two signs, or whether you go for all 12 signs. In fact, watching these before Mars gets to Scorpio next week could be incredibly helpful to you.
Yes, this astrology is working on everyone; but not in exactly the same way. You can get a taste of Eric's approach in this preview video he recently released.
Maybe get your sign and that of your partner; or your Sun sign and rising sign; or your sign and your child's sign. Whatever you choose, I trust you will hear something that lets off the pressure valve just a bit, helps you make some sense of it all and suggests a workable solution. We're with you.
Yours & truly,

Amanda Painter


Your Monthly Horoscopes -- and our Publishing Schedule Notes

For Eric's video presentation on this weekend, check the new Planet Waves TV.

We published your extended monthly horoscope for May on Thursday, April 21. We published your extended monthly horoscope for April on Thursday, March 24. We published your Moonshine horoscope for the Taurus New Moon, by Len Wallick, on Thursday, May 5. Please note: we normally publish the extended monthly horoscope on the first Friday after the Sun has entered a new sign.

Planet Waves
Planet Waves Weekly Horoscope for May 19, 2016, #1101 | By Len Wallick
Aries (March 20-April 19) -- Most of us have a so-called 'element'. That is to say, an environment in which you are most comfortable and proficient. An actor's element, for example, might be on the stage. To be out of your element is often referred to as being 'a fish out of water'. It is possible, however, to discover a separate or alternative element that is just as suitable as the one you now think of as your own (if not more so). Such might very well be the case for you soon. Whether as result of your own personal evolution, or by sheer serendipity, you could come across something or someplace new that feels like home. Be alert for that sensation. If you do feel it, remember to take enough time to make sure that what you are feeling is real before deciding to move in. -- by Len Wallick. For your Eric Francis horoscope this week, please see this link.

Taurus (April 19-May 20) -- It's amazing how most of us can get through a day without being hyper-vigilant about every detail. It's also probably a very good thing. That way, you can be selective, choosing how and where to focus your attentions and energy based on what your priorities are in the moment. To the extent that you may comfortably do so, however, the next few weeks might be a good time to look more closely at what you have filtered out or passed by. Reliably for you, a good place to start is to quite literally stop and smell the flowers along your way -- provided you can do so safely and without doing anything inappropriate (such as trespassing). Then, go on from flowers to other observations less often taken in. This is not about seeking distraction; quite the opposite. It's about expanding your mind without losing any focus at all. -- by Len Wallick. For your Eric Francis horoscope this week, please see this link.

Gemini (May 20-June 21) -- That which is delayed is not necessarily deferred. There is a difference. You are better at discerning that difference than most people are, and it is precisely that native skill which will allow you to navigate through the period of time you are now entering. Trust your judgment about whether simply being patient will pay off, and endeavor to make forbearance look easy. Conversely, if you sense you are being put off by others, consider not letting such actions simply pass. There are ways to keep your issues and negotiations alive and moving towards results that give everybody a chance to win. Find those ways, and others will see how it is in their best interest to compromise with you -- without any requirement that you compromise anything that's important to, or about, you. -- by Len Wallick. For your Eric Francis horoscope this week, please see this link.

Cancer (June 21-July 22) -- Do not underrate how versatile you truly are. Inside you, there's a vast array of personal resources you might appropriately call tools. The tricks you are now being faced with performing may very well come down to simply and (above all) consciously choosing the right tool for any given situation. In other words, you will want to be more careful than ever about reacting without thinking in any circumstance that gives you even a little time to think. You will also want to be very aware of all your habits, even the very best ones. That's because you are entering a period of at least two weeks when you are likely to encounter exceptional situations in which your best interests would be served by making an exception to what you usually do. Eschew the necessity of defaults now, so as not to find yourself in fault later. -- by Len Wallick. For your Eric Francis horoscope this week, please see this link.

Leo (July 22-Aug. 23) -- You may have had good reason to go it alone in some ways during your life -- especially for the last four or five years. Perhaps it was to protect yourself somehow. Maybe it was because you found that you could rely on yourself when others occasionally proved to be unreliable. It's good to be able to protect yourself. It's also good to be self-reliant. There is no avoiding the fact, however, that you are a human being. There is also no denying that our species has survived because of, and defined itself by, a capacity for cooperation and forming communities. Therefore, as you move forward from this auspicious point into the rest of your life, be open to joining with the auspices of individuals or groups with whom you could form a more perfect union. -- by Len Wallick. For your Eric Francis horoscope this week, please see this link.

Virgo (Aug. 23-Sep. 22) -- There is a through-line. If anybody is connected to it (or even a living manifestation of it), it's you. The through-line is not necessarily a straight line, but it does reliably pass through what seems to be impassable. It connects everything, even that which seems impossibly remote or even irrevocably severed. For most people, this through-line is expressed by the phrase "life goes on." For you it is more than a phrase. That's how you have always been so adaptable when others struggle with change. It's the reason you have always been so quick to learn new things and even better at mastering them. Remember all this now, and you will see that outward appearances do not do justice to the truth: that your situation at this time is nothing less than a threshold to being you at your very best. -- by Len Wallick. For your Eric Francis horoscope this week, please see this link.

Planet Waves
These beautiful notebooks are pleasant to hold, high quality and have excellent paper and binding. Eric checked out about 15 varieties before choosing these. They are also available in black. He says he'll add a splash of paint if you like. You can get your journal, while stocks last, by signing up for a one-year Core Community Membership at this link.

Libra (Sep. 22-Oct. 23) -- For every little thing you figure out how to do better -- even the seemingly insignificant -- the result will improve the quality of your life. Therefore, pursue perfection, but not as an end in itself. After all, perfection is only an ideal. The purpose of ideals is to serve as a guide, not as a master. For that reason you should be careful not to become a slave to the unattainable. Making yourself and everything you do more and more excellent should be a process. You will know you are engaging with that process successfully if you get a sense of satisfaction and accomplishment from even the most mundane tasks. That sense will, in turn, bring you joy. By any measure, enjoying yourself more is an indication that the quality of your life has indeed improved. -- by Len Wallick. For your Eric Francis horoscope this week, please see this link.

Scorpio (Oct. 23-Nov. 22) -- Peggy Noonan wrote that, "Part of courage is simple consistency." True, consistency can have its shadow side just like anything else; stubbornness for its own sake would be one form. Yet consistency has its place and benefits, too. There is reason to think that your practicing at least one or two forms of consistency could very well contribute to the best possible outcomes for you and everybody you are associated with at this time. Foremost among those consistencies to consider undertaking is being kind to all. That, by the way, would necessarily include being kind to yourself. Another way you might want to practice consistency -- more optional but, paradoxically, also more optimal -- is by presenting the same face to every person you encounter. For only in that way can you consistently be, and feel like, your very own self. -- by Len Wallick. For your Eric Francis horoscope this week, please see this link.

Sagittarius (Nov. 22-Dec. 22) -- In spite of what an old Internet hoax may tell you, Mars will never appear to be as large as the Moon from your perspective of the sky here on Earth. For the remainder of this year, however, the things that Mars represents on Earth (among them: desire) could very well appear for you to be as large as some of the things symbolized by the Moon (among them: emotional needs). That's not necessarily a bad thing. It may be useful for you to know the difference, however. Under some circumstances at least, pursuing a desire could entail a different strategy and require different tactics from seeking to get your needs met. Therefore, to have the best results in both attaining your desires and fulfilling your emotional needs, seek to know the difference -- and yourself -- better. -- by Len Wallick. For your Eric Francis horoscope this week, please see this link.

Capricorn (Dec. 22-Jan. 20) -- Anybody who thinks you need fixing is probably wrong. Anybody who tries to fix you is almost certainly not doing you a good turn. Your very best friends will distinguish themselves by accepting you and being happy with you as you are. Another attribute of good friends, however, is that they want you to be happy in, and with, your life. For that reason (and for the sake of your friends, as well as for yourself) make it your business to figure out, to the extent that you can, all that makes you happy and all that does not. Once so figured, do your level best to live in ways that support, rather than sabotage, your happiness. If you can do simply that, you will have become more than just your own best friend. You will also have given your friends the best gift possible: your good example. -- by Len Wallick. For your Eric Francis horoscope this week, please see this link.

Aquarius (Jan. 20-Feb. 19) -- Children who play well, either with others or by themselves, possess a great wisdom: that being human and alive on Earth includes places and times when it is appropriate to have fun. Regardless of what you are now dealing with or living through, indications from the sky above imply that you are being accorded the right time, and enough time and space, in which to have some fun of your own (or you will be soon). But first you must remember what you knew as a child. Play does not have to be anything in particular. It's about what you feel. If what you are doing when you play feels fun enough to keep you doing it for its own sake; and if you lose track of time, concerns, or even the weight of responsibilities in the process; you will know that you have remembered very well indeed. -- by Len Wallick. For your Eric Francis horoscope this week, please see this link.

Pisces (Feb. 19-March 20) -- Itemizing how your current abode does (and does not) differ from whatever home or homes were provided for you as a child is an excellent way to begin getting clear about what, if any, changes you want to make in your personal surroundings. The same principle and protocol would almost certainly allow you to take an inventory of the intangibles that constitute your inner life. That way you can get a better idea of both who and what you now are (or are not), as well as what you might (or might not) want to become. Finally, and most importantly, remember that even if there are constraints regarding the extent to which you can change the physical world, the power you have to make changes on the inside are truly unlimited -- even if you might need some guidance from the outside in making them. -- by Len Wallick. For your Eric Francis horoscope this week, please see this link.


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