Planet Waves | May 2018 | Monthly Forecast | Hudson Valley | Hudson Valley; Chronogram

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Planet Waves | May 2018

Be Yourself, No Matter What They Say

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As for self-awareness, most people associate this with being self-conscious, which means feeling awkward. Thus the whole "raising awareness" thing is not necessarily a big seller, seemingly for this reason. However, like learning how to dance, do yoga, play music, or write with a pencil, you must go through the awkward phase to gain some dexterity and get the rewards.

The Rage Problem

One situation society is facing at the moment is a rage problem. Many people are, at the least, frustrated, let down, and pissed off, and many are packing some serious, unprocessed, and unmanaged anger. Many are depressed, which is another way of staying angry but not giving it a voice.

Anger and rage show up in various forms, from hostility to road rage to domestic violence to taking aggressive and self-righteous positions on issues, such as deporting "illegal" aliens.

Consider how many people are shot every day in the United States: That is symptomatic of anger. The police randomly shooting people is about anger, and fear. Mass shootings are about anger. So, too, is thinking you need to have a gun.

The bullying problem that we're seeing on every level of society: There's a good example of rage.

In his classic 1988 work on recovery, Healing the Shame that Binds You, John Bradshaw describes self-righteousness as one of the most addictive drugs in existence.

Yet there seems to be little interest in either harnessing this energy and using it for something productive or healing it. To make the commitment to heal wounds require first admitting one's anger, and maybe declaring a truce. Then the next step is to be introspective and consider the root of one's feelings.

There is an idea going around that the solution to everything that makes us angry is to be more angry. Yet that is like trying to smooth out the surface of water with a canoe paddle. The "blow off rage" approach is likely to make matters worse, and to further damage the trust in one another that we need to do anything positive.

Aries is ruled by the planet Mars, and has many resonances with it. Mars is a kind of omnibus planet that addresses matters of desire, assertion, aggression, anger, warfare, and other forms of violence. This summer, Mars will be retrograde in Aquarius (from June 26 to August 27). This is the astrology that will dominate the summer emotionally, and it could go a few different ways.

Aquarius is the sign of groups, social patterns, cultural patterns, and the technology that binds them. Aquarius is not really the public, but more a subsection of the public that includes your circle of friends and the people they know. It involves organizations and informal associations, and the social patterns that they create or enforce. Aquarius is about the rules of civilization, whether helpful or not.

Mars retrograde in Aquarius looks like some kind of current running through society. Mars in Aquarius describes the individual in relationship to the groups that he or she belongs to.

In retrograde motion, Mars is likely to assert itself against the group, and retrograde would represent old issues, anti-social conduct, or unpopular views. At its best, it looks like Chiron in Aries: the willingness to be a maverick and go against the grain.

Aquarius is the sign of groups. Yet most things that we think of as groups are really something else. Only individuals can form a group. Most people have not individuated; so, when they get together, that is a mass, a crowd, a mob or a collective—but not necessarily a group. Once people have individuated, they are capable of connecting on the level of group consciousness, which is different from mass consciousness.

The Issue with Being an Individual

Asserting oneself as an individual comes with risks. There are challenges to individuation and self-actualization, which are not often mentioned by those who proffer these ideas. Being an individual means standing out: Your life is your own, you make your own choices, you have your own opinions, and you do things your own way.

To do this, there is, necessarily, the ingredient of, "I don't care what others think" involved in the process. No matter how polite you are about this, it's still possible to annoy people merely by being who you are. This is why being a conformist is so popular, and why so few people express their honest opinion: They "stay out of trouble" by being quiet. That, however, is not self-actualization.

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