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Sex makes babies, but it's procreative in every other way as well. When you open up your sexual aperture, you open up your potential, your creative flow, and your desire to live. If we're wondering why so many people today seem like zombies (and why zombie and vampire films are the rage), and why so many people are drugged on suicide-inducing antidepressants, maybe it's because there's so much pressure to be pristine and uptight.
Maybe, as my teacher Joe Trusso is fond of saying, the opposite of depression is expression.
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I was not aware of David Bowie's deeply troubled early home life until I started researching him this week, to write about him for the first time. His life as a child was as messed up as any kid's is today, with what he described alternately as madness and as "emotional and spiritual mutilation."
His chart has the intensity of a serial killer. It speaks of isolation, violation, deception, and an environment where trust was nearly impossible. He was surrounded not just by muggles but by aggressive and toxic ones.
But he was a gentle, graceful spirit. He was observant. He was creative and curious about that fact, and by some miracle he was able to keep that flow going. If we're looking for a possible explanation, I would say that he was well on the way to weaving that thing called soul when he arrived here.
I am not sure if doing this is a choice. There are some people who seem to use these devastating experiences and the lack of contact that they need to become some of society's most important and helpful teachers. Many, many others are hardened and become immune to empathy, passing the cruelty forward.
Judging just from Bowie's chart, he could have gone either way. But I think that, as evidenced by dropping his family name (Jones) at age 17, he was taking over the process of forming his own identity and his own reality. He claimed himself, and he made a life of doing so.
That's something that everyone who actually grows up must do, sooner or later. At a certain point, one must actually stop worrying about what they will think. This is best taught by example, and David Bowie was just exactly role model.
I would add that no matter how many times he morphed his persona, or reinvented or renamed himself (apparently one of his favorite hobbies), he was still the person who he was at the core of his being: Someone who chose to live, to love and to work right until the end of his days.