The Begrudging Importance of Being Human


It is no accident that my longest recent lapse in writing (other than the steady stream of horoscopes) coincided with the most 'crazy-active' astrology of the year.

As a combination 'professional astro-scribe' and 'humble participant in humanity', I sometimes find my attentions split between these jobs.

How sincerely heartfelt will my writings be if I feign superhuman detachment from the influences in question, as so many 'experts' do in adopting that oh-so-evolved authorial tone which reifies their observations and experiences as some cosmic truth? Yet, if I'm earnestly engaging with all those same astrological factors that have been rocking your world, dear reader, I can't always muster the stiff composure to manufacture constructive insights, warnings, or zingy turns-of-phrase. When I'm in it, I hardly feel like rising to the challenge of articulating a high-minded interpretative framework in which to understand myself. I want to wallow, whine, dissolve into it… disappear.

If you've followed my writing here for any length of time, you've probably noticed I'm getting worse and worse at separating myself—my personal narrative—from the astrology itself. For those who only visit for the free astrology information (but who, perhaps, care much less about the person behind all the freebies), I can only imagine this to be a rather irritating trend. The ironic thing, of course, is that this trend in my creative output is directly and essentially relevant to the astrology which unfolded over this same time.

The extreme evolutionary pressures we've all been constantly exposed to, courtesy of Uranus and Pluto, have made it increasingly impossible for many of us to successfully compartmentalize the various building-blocks of our lives. Compromises which were totally tolerable just a few years earlier now often feel like they're killing us. A new level of unyielding authenticity has become our souls' best survival tactic. The intensification of moral problems we're contending with, an accelerating need to reevaluate how we allocate our personal resources, the painful confrontations with loss—these are symptoms and situations which point us toward ever-more-authentic expressions of self. In so many cases, it's all we've got. Thankfully, it's also our most valuable possession.

March's bumpy astrology—featuring the final of seven Uranus-Pluto squares, lots of fire-sign energy, and a new-moon solar eclipse exact on the equinox—served as a spectacular climax to a thus-far-disruptive-and-unstable 2010s, stoking the flames in our continuing faceoff with recurring themes of radical departure and revolution which have, by this point, become all too familiar. Last month's exceedingly fiery vibe, activated by the eclipse influence, ratcheted up the spontaneous strength behind our individuating reactions to restrictive or oppressive circumstances… and shot hot-tempered sparks outward, in our impatient refusal to defer one moment longer. Some spark-shootings, alas, were more consciously intentional and controlled than others.

In my world, March will go down in history as a month in which I momentously lost control. Twice. As someone with a heavily-Saturn-ruled birthchart—and an infamous personal discomfort with the fire element, which is largely unrepresented in my astro-makeup—the idea of dauntlessly following one's spontaneous impulses, with the self-confident instincts upon which fire-sign greatness relies so fundamentally, is not one I innately groove with. How can I adequately prepare myself for the various possible outcomes without lots of foresight and careful restraint? Yet, it's my very tendency to contain my impulses, to withhold immediate direct expression of a feeling or desire (in favor of first strategically positioning myself for maximal command over its execution), that contributes to a buildup of amplified resentment, bitterness, or upset… a charge which eventually gets discharged, often in a jarring or hysterical manner that betrays my original attempts at self-control.

Earlier in the month, I erupted into a bout of antagonistic yelling at my mother, in an unreasonably reactive tone like I haven't used towards her since my days as a confused adolescent. I get along relatively well with both my parents, though our relationships are not without their sensitive spots. At the tail-end of a day heavy with important family business, I found myself triggered by a perceived slight… and, prompted by my mom's innocent inquiry into whether something was bothering me, I went ballistic, launching into a litany of my long-held-in feelings about all the ways in which I believed I've been a disappointment to my parents' expectations (e.g., following an unorthodox career path, being a gay man who won't be producing grandkids) and utterly shocking my unsuspecting parents with an explosion that seemed to arise from nowhere. The yelling lasted no more than ten minutes, though the subsequent tear-filled processing conversations (and desperate efforts to lovingly and reassuringly tend to my mother's frayed nerves) lasted another couple days. It took even longer to assuage my silent guilt about being such a shameful, treasonous son.

A couple weeks later, at the height of the eclipse period and still soaking in the aftermath of my parental explosion, I found myself going too far with some post-event revelry… and, after pouring several whiskies into me, proceeded to aggressively vent hostilities at some dear friends who also happen to be colleagues. While wielding this combative edge (something I normally don't aim at people I care about) was an egregious enough offense, the worst part of all was that I didn't remember all the details of what I'd said, and had to be reminded later (graciously, I might add) by one of my friends. That's right, folks: Your esteemed astrologer got so drunk that he went into blackout mode (an exceedingly rare occurrence in my life, for the record) and mouthed off with misdirected grievances, harsher than any supposed offenses warranted, due to my projecting onto them unresolved anger which wasn't entirely relevant to the circumstances-at-hand. A few contrite apologies later, my friends seemed quick to forgive my trespasses and let the whole thing go. Needless to say, my horror at having lost control over what I was saying (and gambling a long-earned reputation?) persisted far past the point of being let off the hook by anyone else. I'd be lying if I didn't admit that, even still, I haven't fully emerged from my humiliated hiding.

I suppose it takes a certain nervy audacity to confess these latest mortifying moments to you, dear reader, though I also felt myself unable to move forward with my writing until I addressed reality. By now, any delusions you may have harbored about me—like, for example, I must of course diligently follow all the sage advice I dole out in my horoscopes because my obvious spiritual mastery guarantees I always respond to situations from my most-highest self—should be effectively decimated. I'm the type of guy who screams at his mommy and daddy like a hormonal teenager. I'm that friend who drinks too much, says inappropriate and hurtful things, then sobers up and grovels for mercy. I'm a human being ('regrettably so', my compulsively image-driven alter-ego might bemoan on the occasion of such humbling slip-ups). I cannot pretend otherwise and still continue to operate as your astrological translator with any credibility.

I had nothing useful to write for a few weeks because I couldn't yet translate what I was going through. Only now, during this 'in-between' astrological moment (i.e., fewer spectacular aspects, a handful of planets in slower-and-more-grounded Taurus), can I make any sense of last month's dynamic developments. I suspect, if you're seeking a personally meaningful connection with anything I just shared with you, you might reflect on recent instances in which you just couldn't any longer contain your tender humanity within the confines of polite behavior. Hopefully, if you're like me, you've also realized that letting it out (despite the temporary cringing you might have to endure) actually shifts the related life-circumstances in a pretty profound way.