Friday, December 04, 2020

HEARTFUL and Touching: Anderson Cooper on Mindfulness AND his deep conversation with Stephen Colbert on loss and grief

Anderson Cooper learned how to meditate and it has changed life for him.  All of the following are touching interviews that can be helpful for everyone in this dramatic time we are going through.  A good pass-along during this transition period.

A few years ago, Anderson did a segment on 60 Minutes about Mindfulness after attending a small Silicon Valley session here in the Santa Cruz mountains.  Later he was interviewed another time, with questions about that experience and how the practice of Mindfulness has affected his life. Those interviews and a couple other heart-touchers are below. Highly recommended.  - 60 Minutes with Anderson Cooper - Interview of Anderson by Soren Gordhamer  - Another interview with Anderson on Mindfulness - Anderson's below-the-surface interview with model Gisele Bundchen re. her panic attacks and how Mindfulness and deep breathing helped her. She talks about how she learned she could look at her life like a movie -- and take a step back in difficult times, realizing she can make decisions from an objective position.  As she says, "The mind is an instrument; don't let it play YOU."  This interview took place in 2019, but it's very helpful for anyone to see it now during Covid times.

And then, there is is the following raw and deeply heartfelt talk between Anderson and Stephen Colbert:  --  Beautiful discussion between Stephen Colbert and Anderson Cooper on how deaths of their fathers, mothers and siblings have affected their lives. They talk about how their lives became bifurcated at age 10 when their fathers died.  Anderson says he and his mom both felt like "everything is possible and nothing is safe,"  with the "everything" meaning it could be good or bad -- a sudden phone call in the middle of the night and your life is changed forever.  I think my family understands that very well through our own personal experiences.

I felt my attention riveted in this talk between these two men about grief and how it led them to understand what is really important in life  -- they are sharing from deep in their souls.  Anderson says he felt like he had to protect his mom from the world.  He finally came to see her strengths by watching her always being open and vulnerable and optimistic.  At the same time, he always felt he had to run interference for her and keep her protected from the world that had once hurt her and could hurt her again.  Colbert says he felt he had to step in as a 10-year-old and almost literally raise his mom since she was so shattered when she lost her husband and 2 sons in a plane crash.

The raw, honest feeling that is expressed between these two men, both of whom often laugh and seek humor as a kind of cover for their more hidden feelings, touched me deeply as I watched them sharing from their hearts with each other.  At one point Anderson's eyes filled with tears and his voice quivered as he asked Stephen a very deep will know that part when you see it. Stephen answered it from a perspective of understanding derived from Catholicism and Buddhism, both of which he has experienced in his life.

This is a side of these two beautiful souls that you don't often get to see.  I wanted to share this with everyone today, as we are all going through difficult times, and it is helpful to see how others have navigated through their great personal losses and griefs.  Shared love and shared stories can be a balm to the spirit and provide uplifting energy, even when speaking of hard, difficult life experiences.  Anderson says this very sincerely as he tells how he welcomes the chance to talk with people about his own grief and to listen to them talk about theirs.  It feels like a communion of the spirit that transcends the daily stuff his life normally revolves around as a journalist.  Both of these men are deep, loving, giving souls.  It is a treat to be able to hear them together.  I can identify with them both in the deepest place in my heart, and am grateful for their openness in revealing so much of their Real identity and spirit to the world.


Sunday, October 11, 2020

Best essay on Worry - the country song by the Carter family at the end etc(click on the link) is perfect.

This columnist's style reminds me of Robert Benchley (you might not remember him, but I do, and it shows how old I am!) and Mark Twain.  I loved this essay.  If you're a worrier, like its author, you will enjoy reading this one -- you might just recognize yourself...and even be able to laugh a little about it.:-)

As for me, I'm keeping my fingers crossed about this election.🤞


By Jaime O'Neill

I've worried my way through life. Hasn't everyone? For those of you willing to admit they are worriers, too, you'll know the worry caused by wondering if other people manage to worry less than you do. Are you worrying excessively, beyond the normal range of worrying? And if so, what harm is it causing you? How might it be shortening your life? What can you do about it? Is there a pill? Do you need to see a shrink? Can you afford a shrink? What if you get a bad one who worsens your worries rather than lifting the burden of them?

When I was a kid, I worried about monsters under the bed. I worried about not getting good grades. I worried about my dad getting laid off. I heard the phrase early and often, knew it was not a good thing. I worried about getting in trouble with mom. She called me a "worry wart." I didn't like that. I worried about it. The metaphor was too vivid. Most kids don't do metaphors very well, and I worried about whether worry would transform me into a walking wart.

When I was in grade school, I worried about how I'd do in Middle School. I worried about tests, worried in eighth grade about the transition to high school. In my last year of high school, I worried about getting drafted, worried about getting through basic training if that happened, worried about where I might be sent and who might try to kill me once I arrived.

I worried about what I was eating because someone was always telling us that we weren't eating right.

When I married, I worried if I could be a good husband. Then, not much later, I worried about whether I could be a good dad to a baby girl, a contingency I had not planned for nor ever quite imagined. Obviously, in the event that fatherhood was something that awaited me, I would have a boy. Wouldn't I?

And then I began worrying in earnest, about that baby girl, and then the one after that. I worried about their health, and about the health of their mother, and my own. There were responsibilities now, and they were huge.

I went to college at night, worrying if I could handle a full-time job and the demands of going to school four nights a week. And I worried about the world coming to an end, worried about a nuclear exchange between my country and the Soviet Union. Worry about that was pretty universal in those days. I was not unique.

When I was a kid, I always worried about being too skinny. Now, older by a lot, I worry about getting fat. In high school, I worried about my future. Would I be able to make it in the world? And now, thanks to Donald Trump and the current accelerating madness, I wonder about whether the world will continue to be a place where anyone but the very worst people can be assured of making it at all.

All along the way, damn near from birth-to-77 in no time flat--I worried that while I may have been worrying too much, other people weren't worrying near enough. They weren't worrying enough about the environment, about equal rights for all, about the war in Vietnam, or later, about the rush to war in Iraq. They didn't worry enough about nuclear winter, or about police brutality, or about gender inequality (was I the only one who had close relatives--mothers, sisters, aunts, daughters--who were women? Why did half the eligible voters in the country not bother with voting? Were they free of worry about who was making choices that could make their lives worse, could send their kids to be killed in unnecessary wars far away, or make their children's lives worse in ways too numerous to enumerate? Was it too much to expect my fellow citizens to pay attention?

I worried about that.

And now I worry daily about the immediate future, of my country and the planet. Big worry, that. Having a madman in charge hasn't helped, but at least I no longer worry that I'm alone in my worries. Now I worry about the fact that everyone is worrying. About the spread of the pandemic. About the threat of a homegrown terrorism and the danger of mad men goaded into action by the madman-in-chief. About a desperate army of dispossessed homeless people in search of food.

I worry about being too worried, and not worried enough.

This morning my worried mind presented me with the worry that Trump's current behavior may be suggesting that he's no longer worried about being re-elected. I'm worried that he knows something we don't know. That he has been told by the Russian hackers that they've got this, that he needn't worry about the polls, or the press, or about Biden/Harris. He needn't worry about democracy at all because the election is, as he's so often said, rigged. And rigged to ensure he will win, rigged in the "cloud," rigged somewhere in that vast universe of cyberspace only the geeks--Russian, Chinese, American, Saudi, Israeli, Argentinian--understand.

Because Trump surely is not behaving like a man who needs to worry about winning an election, is he now? Take it from an expert on worrying. He's just not that worried. And that worries the hell out of me.

We've all been told not to worry. I often quote a line from Mark Twain: "Worry is interest paid on a debt we may never owe." And he was right, of course. But I worry if I stop worrying so much, I might tip some sort of cosmic balance wheel and that the disaster that followed would be all my fault.

But no worries. It's far too late in the game for me to worry myself into an early grave. If you are younger, however, I'd suggest you ramp up your worries because you've got a lot of compensatory worrying to do once I'm gone.

To hear "Worried Man" song, click here:


Wednesday, October 07, 2020

For your viewing pleasure -- Lincoln Project and Randy Rainbow

Newest Lincoln Project ad -- best ever!  Evita/Trump

Newest Randy Rainbow -- with Patti LuPone

Monday, October 05, 2020

The Social Dilemma - most important info for phone and computer users (isn't that everyone?)

 streaming on Netflix

In my opinion, this may well be the most important documentary of our time. Silicon Valley technology designers/experts are warning/telling us the harsh reality of what their technology is costing us and the world itself.  This is a truly alarming warning -- a blast of AWOOOGAAAAH!!! to us all.  If you have a child or grandchild using their cell phone constantly and you yourself are doing the same (and this is practically EVERYBODY these days), then you owe it to yourself to watch this documentary.  If your child (especially teenagers, as the film points out) is depressed, anxious, fragile, finding it impossible to concentrate on doing homework, sad, and worried about their own mental health, you will want to view this. It seems this is a worldwide phenomenon affecting the present generation of kids, in which fear and depression has risen by astronomical numbers. The developers of the technology are aware that AI is running away with the technology in the way it has been programmed to do, and, instead of being used for good as they hoped, it is being used against us and our kids.  It is chilling to learn that these developers, because of their own fears about the technology they have created, have left their jobs and are gathering together to warn us. They won't even let their own children have access to social media as it is programmed in today's world. In a portrayal, with actors, of an average family, the film shows how strongly addictive social media has become to everyone, and especially the kids.  I hope millions will watch this film, for the important educational information contained in it. Our world is in need of its warning.  Here is one review of it:

Amid all the stuff you are watching and feeding yourself with these days, The Social Dilemma is a must-watch. Even if you are not a documentary person, you will want to watch it because it carries the potential to change your life for good. 

In this documentary, the high-positioned ex-employees of many major Silicon Valley social media platforms tell of damaging ways this technology has impacted the world. While it talks about positives and good intentions as well, there's a huge focus on how social media has become a tool of spreading negativity and influencing the minds of people all over the world. Democratically run countries are particularly at risk from the negative effects of social media, as factual truth itself is being demolished as a base from which to understand and act.  You realize the shape and scale of this only after seeing the mind manipulation taking place on both conscious and subliminal levels.

It's an eye-opener to see how these technology developers have quit their dream jobs because of their alarm in how the social fabric of the world has been harmed. They are trying now to alert us to what is happening, so regulatory changes can be made -- and the technology and their positive hopes for it can be realized in ways to benefit the world and its people, rather than the damaging ways it is being used now.

One little tidbit: Plastic surgeons have informed about a new syndrome called 'Snapchat dysmorphia'. It is when young people want surgery so they can look more like they look in filtered selfies. I learned this and so much more in just 5-10 mins of watching this eye-opening documentary. It is 93 minutes of awesomeness.

The Social Dilemma Review: Go & Watch How Social Media          Giants Have Made You Lab Rats
The Social Dilemma Review:  How Social Media Giants Have Made You and Your Children into Lab Rats

As The Social Dilemma moves forward, it talks about how social media manipulates our minds, using our own preferences against us. It warns of how our behavior changes as we scroll through our social media timeline, designed specifically for us individually, using info gathered about us from all over the internet. Each of us is unknowingly being led to ads and information we would not normally seek out for ourselves, but which artificial intelligence in the technology has determined will appeal to us -- and which will bring in more money for the advertisers.  It's very likely that browsing social media won't be the same experience for you after seeing this.  The creators of the technology tell you how the UI (User Interface) is created in a way as to harness maximum user engagement, which benefits advertisers and the social media giants themselves. This has led to users being nothing but lab rats for social media giants. I have studied about this before as well, but I was still surprised to learn about science and logic behind "photo tagging", "generating comments," "replies to comments", "suggesting emojis as replies to comments". These are devised to manipulate you to engage and spend as much time on the site as possible. You might get a notification about a friend tagging you in a photo, that photo isn't shown in the notification, and that is just because they want you to click on it and get engaged and led down the rabbit hole of ever-more viewing/buying/absorption. They hack into your psychology. Every little part of social media has been crafted for that. Everything you see on your timeline has been especially served to you and you alone by the algorithms. We may think we are all seeing the same things, but no -- you are exclusively being pinpointed, as is each consumer in the same way, through their own phones and computers.  And the technology keeps gathering more information to continue upgrading itself, without the help of humans. A.I. is here now --not in some future dystopia -- and it is manipulating us in ways we never could have imagined. 

Overall, watching The Social Dilemma is nothing less than mini enlightenment. You don't know how much you need it until you view it.  You will not be able to forget it, and I think that is a Good thing!



Wednesday, September 23, 2020

A heart-touching interview of sister of 28-year-old doctor who died of Covid

I don't think anyone could watch this interview with a woman from Syracuse -- and not cry along with her at the loss of her dearly loved sister, a Syracuse native who was serving as a doctor in Houston.  Kate Bolduan, the interviewer, was in tears herself.


What are we going to do about Trump, who hasn't an ounce of compassion in him -- and who is getting cheered at his rallies when he tells his supporters that Covid is only killing the old?  That in itself is terrible, because it implies that older people don't matter, but it isn't even true.  I don't know how the diehard Trump lovers can be reached. But the rest of us can make sure we vote and get others around us to vote.  We must rid ourselves of the heartless monster in the White House, before he wreaks more havoc on our country and its people.  He is already in the midst of taking away women's rights with his choice for the Supreme Court. What is next on his agenda?  The reversal of Brown v. Board of Education?  

Monday, September 21, 2020

There is something missing in this White House

Written by Elayne Griffin Baker:  There is definitely something missing.

"There is no literature or poetry in this White House.
No music.
No Kennedy Center award celebrations.
There are no pets in this White House.
No loyal man's best friend. No Socks the family cat.
No kids' science fairs.
No times when this president takes off his
blue suit-red tie uniform and becomes human,
except when he puts on his white shirt-khaki pants
uniform and hides from Americans to play golf.
There are no images of the first family enjoying themselves together in a moment of relaxation.
No Obamas on the beach in Hawaii
moments, or Bushes fishing in Kennebunkport, no Reagans on horseback, no Kennedys playing touch football on the Cape.
I was thinking the other day of the summer
when George H couldn't catch a fish
and all the grandkids made signs and
counted the fish-less days.
And somehow, even if you didn't even like GHB, you got caught up in the joy of a family that loved each other and had fun.
Where did that country go? Where did all
of the fun and joy and expressions of love and happiness go? We used to be a country that did the ice bucket challenge and raised millions for charity.
We used to have a president that calmed and
soothed the nation instead dividing it.
And a First Lady that planted a garden
instead of ripping one out.
We are rudderless and joyless.
We have lost the cultural aspects of
society that make America great.
We have lost our mojo. Our fun, our happiness.
The cheering on of others.
The shared experiences of humanity that makes it all worth it.
The challenges AND the triumphs that we shared and celebrated.
The unique can-do spirit Americans
have always been known for.
We have lost so much
In so short a time."
~Elayne Griffin Baker

Saturday, September 19, 2020

Looking at today's news and musing....

I am convinced that incarnations on Earth are strictly for soul growth -- gained through many challenges (and heaven knows, we all get them in one way or another!).  How we handle those challenges determines our maturation as souls.  Judging from past history, there will always be wars, rumors of war, dictatorial leaders and madmen locked into greed and lust for power, making the lives of others miserable as they pursue their obsessive goals that lead them finally to death and karmic justice.  As Leonard Cohen says in his song Anthem: Oh, the wars they will be fought again, the holy dove, she will be caught again -- bought and sold and bought again -- the dove is never free.  But I do believe we, as souls, can find freedom within ourselves, and Trump and his ilk are goads to incentivize us in that direction.  Ruth Bader Ginsburg was a shining light for all of us to be inspired by and to follow.  Einstein is another admirable figure, worthy of following and learning from:
Albert Einstein

"A human being is a part of the whole called by us universe, a part limited in time and space. He experiences himself, his thoughts and feeling as something separated from the rest, a kind of optical delusion of his consciousness. This delusion is a kind of prison for us, restricting us to our personal desires and to affection for a few persons nearest to us. Our task must be to free ourselves from this prison by widening our circle of compassion to embrace all living creatures and the whole of nature in its beauty."

 Albert Einstein
I just watched the Netflix documentary series "Challenger"  about the unnecessary astronaut deaths (and death of teacher Christa McAuliffe, too) in that tragedy that shouldn't have happened.  It, too, made me think about the frailties in human consciousness, and how much we have yet to learn.  On the plus side, I also believe Unconditional Love is the most powerful force in the universe. ❤️️  So, ever onward and upward!!!!❤️️


Thursday, September 17, 2020

Some Trump supporters will believe anything he says -- Stephen Colbert show proves it

You've probably seen Triumph, the insult dog with the cigar in his mouth, at other times, making social commentary for laughs. Well, this time, on the Colbert show, he is commenting on actual Trump supporters who have agreed to be in a focus group in which possible Trump ads are supposedly being reviewed.  The joke was to find out how far would actual Trump supporters go in their support of their cult leader?  The ads suggest preposterous things (only in Trump years would ANYone believe such things!), and the group members are asked to comment on them. Surely there would be a limit to what the MAGA folks would believe and approve of!  

But no!  I watched in awe as they approved of everything Trump (supposedly) said -- even to the point of agreeing that possibly microwaving people would kill the virus(!)...and that children could be put in the work force because they are "immune to the virus."  Many other "suggestions" were made (ostensibly by Trump), all of which met with the approval of these committed (and certifiably commitable!) Trump supporters.  SCARY!!!!  No longer do we need to wonder how Hitler got so many Germans to go along with the murder of "non-Aryan" victims in WWII.  The Trump cult appears to be cut from the same cloth. YIKES! 🙁😫

Tuesday, September 15, 2020

Delightful video: baby hearing violin music for first time

A heart toucher!  Scenes like this are the perfect antidote to Trump.  Babies are the BEST! :-)❤️️


Sunday, September 06, 2020

A little more about the movie "A Hidden Life"

A Hidden Life. A film by Terrence Malick, made in 2019, now available for rental on Netflix.  

In contemplating more about this film (re. a conscientious objector to Naziism in Hitler's time), which I watched last night and highly recommend, the word "cult" became prominent in my thoughts.  I looked up its definition:
A system of devotion or loyalty directed toward a particular figure or object.  A misplaced or excessive admiration for a particular person or thing.

It's pretty obvious that because earth humans are tribal beings, we instinctively group together.  As I look at life objectively with a somewhat simplistic view, it seems to me that every grouping of mankind eventually becomes a hierarchical "cult" (using the least offensive descriptive sense of that word, because cults are most often identified with fanaticism), in which one must put their faith if they are to comfortably live/work within it. If the authority/leader at the top (whether it be a husband, a parent, a CEO, a priest, minister or a President) uses power selfishly to their own advantage against the welfare of the overall group, the cult can quickly become a dark -- and even dangerous one -- especially for the most vulnerable members on the lowest rungs of the group's ladder.  

Using this as a guideline, perhaps it is important and necessary to recognize this fact -- and to look beyond appearances to discover one's true identity, in order to live an authentic life. One's own experience is always the best teacher.  Franz, the main character in the film, was driven--no matter the cost--to live by his core principles when dark forces invaded his and his family's peaceful pastoral existence. He was impelled to live by his own truth--and his wife, though grief-stricken, honored and loved him for following his conscience.

The way the family in this film is treated by their friends and neighbors because of the husband's decision to leave the Hitler cult is a familiar story. Cults, big or small, don't look kindly on "deserters" who rock the boat as they dive overboard and swim away. To use another metaphor, there is usually a price to pay when leaving the herd.

The Christian mystic, St. John of the Cross, once put it this way: "In the inner wine cellar I drank of my beloved, and, when I went abroad through all this valley I no longer knew anything and lost the herd which I was following.  If then, I am no longer seen or found on the common, you will say that I am lost, But, stricken by love, I lost myself, and was found."

I realize my musings are a simplistic view of things. There are many philosophical nuances that can be added, and the film shows some of them, even without words needing to be spoken -- as different characters along the way in Hitler's time evaluate their own beliefs and actions in contrast to Franz.  In their eyes, you can see the reflection of "What if I......"  I wonder how many of the Republican "leaders" in America today are experiencing that kind of self-reflection?  As in Hitler's time, we can see them murmuring in angst behind the scenes, but none of them are speaking out in public defiance of Trump. The courage it takes to leave the herd seems to be absent in them.

Variety had a very good review of the movie (see:, ending this way:
In this film, Malick draws a critical distinction between faith and religion, calling out the failing of the latter — a human institution that's as fallible and corruptible as any individual. At one point, Franz goes to a local chapel and speaks to the cynical old artisan (Johan Leysen) restoring the damaged paintings on its walls. "A darker time is coming, and men will be more clever," the man tells him. "They don't confront the truth. They just ignore it." In recent years, Malick may have seemed out of touch, responding to issues that interest him more than the public at large. But whether or not he is specifically referring to the present day, its demagogues, and the way certain evangelicals have once again sold out their core values for political advantage, "A Hidden Life" feels stunningly relevant as it thrusts this problem into the light.


Want to see a good movie? Here's one I saw today and recommend

It's called "A Hidden Life," and was made last year by director Terrence Malick. It is almost 3 hours long -- and speaks perfectly to the times we are in, though it is based on a true story that took place in Hitler's Germany/Austria during WWII.  The cinematography is incredibly beautiful!  If you have never visited Austria, prepare to be visually overwhelmed by beautiful natural scenes that will take your breath away. Almost every scene in this movie is like a perfect painting (some reminded me of Van Gogh's paintings of farm workers and house interiors) -- with light, shadows, color, and visual depth that evokes feelings of being a participant, rather than a member of the audience. The little vignettes of life events in a little Alpine village are so realistically depicted, the viewer feels as though he is in the movie, living it along with the characters. You can almost feel wet spray on your face as the characters walk by fast-splashing water being turned by a mill wheel.

The parallels between the main character's dilemma, determined by having to live in a country where Hitler is the leader -- and our own time and dilemma with our similar leader in the White House are very clear to see.  Plus, the existential questions the film delves into are the same ones that have been asked by humans throughout history -- and are ones that we are asking today. 

In the review below, the main character is compared to Bartleby the Scrivener from Herman Melville's short story, and yes there are times in the story when I wanted to shout at him in frustration that there are other ways you can do this!   It's a slow-paced movie but oh so worth the viewing, if only for the treat of seeing the majestic, idyllic beauty of the Austrian Alps and the meadowlands below them.  Add in the story (a true one) and you have a memorably magnificent movie -- one that will stay with you because of the deep questions it presents about life and love and the principles we hold dear. The acting is superb, too, for every character!   Highly recommended!

You can view a short video preview of the movie at:

and read a long written review of it at:

EXCERPT from the review:

The phenomenon of ordinary citizens investing their pride, their sense of self-worth, and (in the case of men) their fantasy of machismo in the person of a single government figure is one that many nations, including the United States, understand well. Malick doesn't give interviews, but I don't think we'd need one to understand why he would release a film like this in 2019, at a time when the United States is being torn apart over the issue of obedient support of an authority figure, and have the dialogue alternate German with English. But the film is rich and sturdy enough to transcend the contemporary one-to-one comparisons that it is sure to invite—and it's not as if we haven't seen this scenario elsewhere, before and after World War II, or will never see it again. The social dynamics presented here are timeless.

And yet, improbably, "A Hidden Life" is a tragic story that doesn't play solely as a tragedy. The misery endured by Franz, Fani and their children is presented as a more extreme version of the pain everyone suffers as the byproduct of life on earth.


Thursday, September 03, 2020

Trump calls wounded and killed American soldiers "losers" and "suckers"

Please share this informative article with friends, especially Trump supporters who are vets or now serving in the military.  

It's enough to make you weep 😪.... what must the veterans and present military troops who support him think of these contemptuous comments byTrump?  Or do they even know about it?  This article in the respected magazine The Atlantic tells many facts about Commander-in-Chief Trump's true feelings about the military (which he never served in because of 5 deferments for his claim of a "heel spur").  He revealed his disdain for military heroism in public when he said about John McCain,  "He's a war hero because he was captured. I like people that weren't captured. The following article tells more verifiably witnessed facts about the president's disrespect and contempt for the military. He has repeatedly disparaged the intelligence of service members, and asked that wounded veterans be kept out of military parades, multiple sources have told The Atlantic.   I hope more of our troops hear of this as they get ready to vote.

As for Trump's heel spurs, many reports have now come out that he never had any. As he said scornfully to his lawyer, "I'm not dumb. Do you think I was going to go to Vietnam?"  See:   and

EXCERPT from article:  When President Donald Trump canceled a visit to the Aisne-Marne American Cemetery near Paris in 2018, he blamed rain for the last-minute decision, saying that "the helicopter couldn't fly" and that the Secret Service wouldn't drive him there. Neither claim was true.

Trump rejected the idea of the visit because he feared his hair would become disheveled in the rain, and because he did not believe it important to honor American war dead, according to four people with firsthand knowledge of the discussion that day. In a conversation with senior staff members on the morning of the scheduled visit, Trump said, "Why should I go to that cemetery? It's filled with losers." In a separate conversation on the same trip, Trump referred to the more than 1,800 marines who lost their lives at Belleau Wood as "suckers" for getting killed.


Tuesday, September 01, 2020

Some astrological observations of the times we are experiencing

For anyone who might be interested in exploring for answers about present events in all our lives:
I've been doing astrology charts and readings again lately, paying attention to the transits in this "interesting" time for all of us.  Particularly for Capricorns and the other Cardinal signs of Aries, Cancer and Libra.  In truth, we are all being affected by the unique and important time in which we are living, and astrology can give an understanding that you won't be hearing in the mainstream media.😊

If you are interested in learning a little about what is going on now, here is a video link of one astrologer's explanation. Don't worry if you don't understand all the astrological terms she uses. Much of her talk is in common terms that anyone can understand, and she has some good insights that match with what we are all experiencing. She speaks of the full moon in 11 degrees of Pisces that will occur on September 2nd, and its effects, as well as other planetary influences that are affecting us on Earth at the present time.  Even if you don't believe in astrology, it's comforting to hear uplifting information that is meant to bring clarity, instead of the confusion we are bombarded with daily from Trump. 🙂 See:

Right now, it looks like we, our government, and the Earth itself are in the midst of a bumpy ride as inexorable transitions are taking place. Psychically derived Sabian symbols tell an interesting story about the transition. I've found them to give very helpful guidance when applied to one's birth chart.  If interested in finding more about the origin and history of Sabian symbols and how they were derived (a very interesting story!), go to:

The full moon of September 2nd will be in the 11th degree of Pisces.  I think the Sabian symbol for that degree fits very well into the story of what we are all experiencing now.  It's not surprising that all these happenings appear to be in perfect alignment with the stars.  As we live through this transitional and transformational period on Earth, it's important to know the turmoil and confusion are temporary and necessary, as we are meant to rise from one level of consciousness to another of higher understanding.  This kind of revolutionary transition doesn't happen overnight, either on a personal level or a cosmic level, but, since it is occurring, we need to trust that it is a change we are ready for and is for the ultimate good. 

As we look around us, we can see the element of conservative thinking has become outworn and outmoded. We, as a planetary people, are in the midst of inevitable change to more progressive thinking.  But, as other times of dramatic changes in past history tell us, there will always be those who dig in their heels and refuse to move forward in the ways the time demands.  We are presently witnessing the turmoil caused by whipped-up fear and hatred as hard-liners desperately try to hang on to greed-and-power-driven systems that no longer serve the planet or its people. We have grown beyond those beliefs and it is time to move on from them, into a wider-based, more inclusive vision for life on Earth. Everything that is happening now, including climate change and the Covid virus, is telling us we cannot stay with the old ways. 

In the midst of all the confusion and rabid rhetoric from the dug-in leaders and their followers who refuse to move forward, tumultuous events are occurring. Regardless of how hard Trump and the old guard (and other leaders of their ilk around the world) try to keep the status quo of conservatism and racial divide, their efforts are doomed to fail. Massive changes are in the works, and divinely-protected events will inexorably continue to move us in a higher direction.  Wise sages keep reminding us that no matter the appearance of anything and everything that may occur in our lives during these difficult times, we must have faith that, truly, All is Well. 😇 💫

See the following interpretation from astrologer Lynda Hill of the Pisces 11 Sabian well as for the symbols before and after Pisces 11.  I like her insights, and you might find them interesting, too. The symbols are an eye-opener, in their perfect alignment with what we see happening all around us. To me, it is proof that the ancient science of astrology is a legitimate way of gaining deeper understanding for our lives. ..."As above, so below."

Pisces 11: On The Path To Enlightenment


ascensionAre you on your own path? Are you heading for a desirable destination? Are you allowing distractions to take you away from what you know you should be doing? Do you feel supported by others in your quest, or, is this a more solitary journey? Do you seek the light, but sometimes find yourself wandering around in the dark? Is it time to get going on your one true path?

This Symbol shows the ability, or the need, to be able to have a quest, to "Seek Illumination", to have a "Path" and to stay on it regardless of what life throws at you. Sometimes the search for high ideals and understanding places us at odds with the more conservative social expectations of others. It is the ability to persevere with the search, regardless of the cost, that marks the sincerity of any path or journey. You may, at times in your life, have to go without some comforts or stick to a rigorous agenda. Most times this quest is very illuminating, sometimes it's confusing. You will need to reject that which is unworthy, while staying true to your objectives in order to arrive at your destination.

People 'on the path'. Having a cause to follow. The promise of light at the end of the day. Sticking with objectives. Being in the now. Going towards the light. Spiritual journeying.

The Caution: Being blinded by the light. Not knowing where you're going. Denial of physical pleasure. Puritanical and one-eyed. Distractions. Narrow minded. Disillusionment.


The difficulties you meet will resolve themselves as you advance. Proceed, and light will dawn, and shine with increasing clearness on your path. D'Alembert

There are two mistakes one can make along the road to truth - not going all the way, and not starting. Buddha

On a long journey of human life, faith is the best of companions; it is the best refreshment on the journey; and it is the greatest property. Buddha

Awake, arise! Strive for the Highest, and be in the Light! Sages say the path is narrow and difficult to tread, narrow as the edge of a razor. Upanishads

Do not say, "I follow the one true path of the Spirit," but rather, "I have found the Spirit walking on my path," for the Spirit walks on all paths. Khalil Gibran

If you follow your bliss, you put yourself on a kind of track, which has been there all the while waiting for you, and the life that you ought to be living is the one you are living. Joseph Campbell

How many roads can a man walk down before they call him a man? Bob Dylan

Pisces 11: Men Traveling A Narrow Path, Seeking IlluminationThe following is from Lynda Hill's book The Sabian Oracle: 360 Degrees Of Wisdom

'Men Traveling a Narrow Path, Seeking Illumination' is an image of people on a mission, seeking to find some knowledge or truth. They are on a journey of discovery, endeavoring to find the answers to questions that may have eluded them until now. They are 'Traveling a Narrow Path', one that probably has deep meaning, regardless of the perceived outcome in terms of society's expectations. This journey is likely to be a very personal one for each participant, even though there may be many who are 'Seeking' the same things.

Sometimes the search for 'Illumination', with its high levels of understanding and idealism, places us at odds with more conservative, social expectations. It is the ability to persevere with the search, regardless of the cost, that marks the sincerity of a journey. Most often this quest is 'Illuminating', although it can sometimes be confusing as new information comes flooding into our conscious awareness. You will need to reject that which is unworthy on the 'Path' as it could lead to disillusionment about values and what is truly worth pursuing. This Symbol can indicate the need to go without many things and having to stick to a strict agenda in order to accomplish a task, goal or education. It may have taken some time to find this particular direction in life. Disregarding one's more mundane physical needs and emotions may be necessary in the quest for getting to the place of ambition or attainment. You may have to leave others behind when you set out. As this is a 'Narrow Path', not all can share the same endeavor or, indeed, would want to. The rewards are usually rich in some measure as one moves towards the light - the 'Illumination'. Maybe you should ask yourself – are you on 'a Path' or a treadmill? Be wary of taking shortcuts, as these may not lead to the thing that's intended.

Keywords: People "on the Path". Sticking to one mindset, diet, regimen or habit. Having a cause to follow. Not looking sideways. Awakening one's base senses in order to progress. Physical ecstasy. Being in the now. Going towards the light. Staying true to self. The promise of light at the end of the journey.

The Caution: Blinded by the light. Not knowing where you're really going. Disillusionment about what's been chosen. Being one-eyed about goals and beliefs. The denial of physical pleasure. Puritanical behavior. Distractions that stop forward movement. Narrow mindedness.

The Karmic Condition (the degree before is Pisces 10: An Aviator In The Aviator In The CloudsClouds. There may be a feeling of having to rise above everything in order to get a bird's eye view of what is going on. You may also feel the need to remove yourself from people, places, events, memories, etc, and to see them from a somewhat heightened or 'uninvolved' perspective. 

Keywords: Elevated views. Always seeing the best in people and things. Peace and tranquility. The longing for transcendence. Not seeing limitations. Being in a refined "head space". Mastery. Flight, planes, pilots. Avoidance of time constraints. Pollyanna attitudes. Free flights of fantasy and escapism. The need for accurate navigation. Being in charge of the controls. Seeking higher truths. Maps. Compasses. Global satellite positioning.

The Caution: Sailing through difficulties or missing what's really going on. Escapist use of alcohol and drugs, etc. Lack of grounded energy or reality. Being unearthed. Escaping responsibilities. Isolating oneself. Completely missing the point.  Wrong turns. Missing the signs. We are meant to stay on our paths, that is the true thrust of what's going on. Meanwhile, we may wonder how we are doing in amongst the 'tests and trials' we may be experiencing. 

The Quest (the degree after) is Pisces 12: An Examination of Initiates in the Sanctuary of an Occult Brotherhood. This symbol is one where we may feel we are 'being judged', having to live up to the expectations of others, or, as though we are somehow being 'examined' by life, love, events, people, etc. This is something we may need to work on.

Keywords: The ordeal that comes to any initiate for entrance into higher realms of being. Tests, examinations, having to prove oneself. Being judged. Being cross-examined. Rarefied atmospheres that demand personal sacrifice. The attainment of knowledge. Finding out how and where one fits in. One-pointed dedication. Cults. Rituals.