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Archive for January, 2011

Questions about a 13th Zodiac Sign!

So! Has Your Beloved and Comfortable Astrology Sign Really Changed?

By Dikki-Jo Mullen

Astronomer Parke Kunkle of the Minnesota Planetarium has been in a state of shock during the second week of January, 2011, a recent newspaper report states. So have the many professional astrologers around the world. Kunkle upended what many who follow astrology knew about their birth signs when he announced to the Minneapolis Star Tribune that the stars are no longer aligned in the heavens as they were 5000 years ago. Major news networks picked up on this and every TV talk show and news cast in the country and in most of the rest of the world has been abuzz. Astrologers have been perplexed, bemused and amused at the volume of response and many questions this has generated. Kunkle is glad to have people noticing the stars he says. The general consensus among astrologers of course is that this is invalid and hardly a surprise. Every so often there has been a similar news flash saying that astrology as we all practice it has changed. We cant be the signs we always thought we were anymore. The Sun Sign (familiar birth signs) has changed to the one preceding it and/or the Zodiac has been invaded, perhaps by Cetus the Whale or Orphicus the Serpent Slayer. Like the Wheel of the Year, the solstices and equinoxes in season shocking headlines create waves for a few days. Then suddenly, they fade, becoming yesterdays news for another decade or so.

Is there any real problem here? Well, not in this star gazers opinion. Consider this the moment your life began, that place and time in the cosmos when you took your first breath, is when your horoscope is calculated. It hasnt changed. Actually in the pattern of the seasons, the astrological calendar which oversees the flow of life, nothing has changed. We can however look at the sky picture from different perspectives, there are numerous zodiacs used to chart the heavenly wisdom which have been developed by different cultures around the world.

Has Your Sun Sign Really Become Different?

Sun Sign or popular astrology, like we use in the familiar columns, uses the Tropical Zodiac, based on the tropics of Cancer and Capricorn, the midsummer and midwinter solstice points. Yes, the first degree of the sign Aries has gradually shifted backward a fraction each year against the starry backdrop of deep space and the constellations in the sky. This effect is called the precession of the equinoxes. The length of time required for the Earth to swing its axis in a full circle backward through the zodiac is a period of about 26,000 years. So each of the world ages takes about 2000 years or a little more to move around the Galactic Center of The Milky Way. This Great Age Circle is illustrated as we refer to the end of the Age of Pisces which began with the rise of Christianity. We are now beginning of the Age of Aquarius. Metaphysical and magical people will find this concept familiar.

Is this a source of concern about the validity of astrology? Well, I wouldnt think it is. Human nature (Yes, thats you!) is about who you are and the external world doesnt change that essence of the essential self. There are diverse opinions about the zodiac. Where do we draw and measure the signs/constellations? If, like most mystics, you are in tune with the summer and winter solstices as well as the spring and autumn equinoxes then you can breath a sigh of relief. The Zodiac cycle starts with the springtime and Aries. What you read in astrology columns and books will relate to you and your life and character.

In India there is a type of astrology called sidereal astrology which does allow for the shifting vernal point in the Great Year. There is about a 23 to 24 degree difference, with some controversy as to how this is calculated, from the familiar tropical zodiac. This is called the Vedic Astrology. On some level both zodiacs will work, the life style and philosophy of the seeker can be a deciding factor. Try subtracting 24 degrees from each placement in your natal chart to see if the chart seems to have more clarity for you, then go from there.

Meanwhile there is no need to mess up the beautiful pieces of the cosmic pie by awkwardly inserting an Orphicus, a (shudder) Serpent Slayer, into the line up, creating a division of 13. Who knows, it might even be unlucky! Auriga The Spider and Centus the Whale are other constellations hovering nearby. They might could get jealous and each want a chunk of the celestial pie too. No, I feel comfortable with the classical twelve signs of the year. In harmony with the seasons of our lives, each watching over the yearly rising of buds and falling of leaves, imparting wisdom to guide humankind just as they have for the past five thousand years.

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Cosmic Cats
Find Your PURRR-fect Feline Friend!
By Dikki-Jo Mullen, Astrologer
Dedicated to the memory of Spiral, a beautiful pure white domestic short hair with amber eyes, best
friend and familiar for 15 years …. who always celebrated his birthday on April 1st.

Aries
Born March 21 – April 19
The elegant and slender Abyssinian is your ideal cat companion. A
powerful jumper and climber, this was one of the first breeds to be
domesticated in ancient Egypt. Remember, Aries is always the sign of the
pioneer and athlete. Streamlined, with a long tail, prominent ears, short
hair and triangular faces, the Abyssinian is a cinnamon to reddish brown
in color. This reflects an affinity with Mars, the red planet, indicator
of masculine energy and ruler of Aries. A peculiarity of the breed is
that more male than female Abyssinian kittens are born.

Taurus
Born April 20 – May 20
Persians are your feline star companions. Round faces framed by long,
beautiful fur makes this glamor kitty the favorite among winners in cat
shows. Placid in temperament, Persians relate to the calm, deliberate
life style preferred by Taureans. Creature comforts such as warm fires
and soft pillows can be shared with appreciation by cat and owner alike.
Originally called Angoras and brought back by Crusaders returning from
Turkey and Persia, the Persian has a pampered look. This accents a
harmony with Venus, the celestial love and beauty indicator and ruling
planet of Taurus.

Gemini
Born May 21 – June 21
Your feline alter ego is the Manx, sometimes called the rabbit cat. Noted
for its gentle voice and great intelligence, this breed has excellent
balance and a formidable reputation as a mouser. The Manx has long hind
legs with a hopping gait and great speed suggesting Mercury, planet of
travel and thought, the ruler of Gemini. intellect and the cosmic ruler
of Gemini. The Twins duality is seen in the fur, a dense top coat covers
a soft undercoat. Lore about how the Manx lost its tail (actually the
result of a natural mutation) are as varied and intriguing as any Gemini
storyteller could wish.

Cancer
Born June 22 – July 22
The domestic short hair, Americas own home grown breed, is your feline
companion. Always loyal to home and family, the domestic short hair is
said to be descended from the first cats that arrived with the pilgrims!
Self sufficient yet loving with small pointed ears, large eyes and a
rounded head, this is the kitty thats always portrayed curled on the
hearth surrounded by family members or starring in the Broadway musical
Cats. Versatile and tough, it can live as a cherished family pet, stray
alley cat, or working as a farm cat.

Leo
Born July 23 – August 22
The Rex, whose name means king, is the obvious choice for the Leo cat.
Leo is the sign of the Lion, the acknowledged king of the jungle. Its
pedigree and history are well documented, members of this breed have pure
origins dating back to a single male cat born in England during the late
19th Century. Quiet, loyal and affectionate with a silky, curly yet short
coat, like a clipped lions mane, this cat is excellent with children.
Nicknamed the poodle cat, Rex doesnt shed.

Virgo
August 23 – September 22
Discriminating Virgos will prefer the clever and rare Korat cat. Pure
grey-blue with sensitive, expressive amber eyes, this cat tends to be
very healthy and of a medium size. It originated in Thailand where it is
thought to bring good luck to its owner. Korat means silver in Thai,
suggesting both the color and preciousness. The Korat, more than any
other breed, will strive to please its owner by learning tricks. It can
shake (hands or paws), roll over and retrieve on cue. Calm and loving, it
seldom meows or creates stress.

Libra
September 23 – October 23
Exotic with interesting beauty, the Siamese is Libras star crossed cat.
Most sources agree that this cat really came from Siam. Bred to be kept
by the Royal Family, commoners were once forbidden to own a Siamese.
Libra has a traditional link with the Far East. These felines with
turquoise eyes, a white body marked with a facial mask and legs and tail
of a contrasting color (called chocolate, lilac or grey points), Siamese
are pretty, sociable and vocal, just like their Libra owners. Sensitive,
quick witted and responsive, Siamese cats have an affinity with the
theater. They are often called upon as actors in stage productions. (Most
notably the role of Pyewackett in Bell, Book and Candle.)

Scorpio
October 24 – November 21
Courageous and assertive, the Russian Blue is the Scorpio cat. Russia has
a traditional astrological link with Scorpio and its ruling planet Pluto,
tied to rebirth and the after life. The Russian Blue has thick, close fur
of a uniform blue-grey shade and bright green eyes. A tall kitty with
thin ears, it creates an otherworldly impression. Its tiny oval feet and
long whiskers allow it to prowl as a master detective. The mystery loving
Scorpio will appreciate these qualities. One legend states The Russian
Blue actually was kept as a pet by Czars, but in true Scorpionic
tradition, the mystery of its origin has never been fully solved.

Sagittarius
November 22 – December 21
The Maine Coon Cat, a fluffy and furry American breed with tufted ears
and paws, is the Sagittarius cat. Gregarious, and huge in size, this
beauty reflects the qualities of Jupiter, ruler of Sagittarius. Largest
of planets, Jupiter relates to exaggeration and wealth. One legend says
this cat is the offspring of raccoons and house cats. Another says they
are descendants of Marie Antoinettes cats, smuggled to Maine when their
mistress was permanently delayed by the guillotine. Still another says
they are descended from Viking cats, who tagged along with explorers 400
years before Columbus discovered America. Maine Coons are true Yankees
with curious, adventurous personalities and quiet voices. They can have
eyes of copper or gold and many colors from tabby to solid white or
black.

Capricorn
December 22 – January 19
The Burmese, status conscious and dignified, is the Capricorn feline. A
well documented pedigree traces this cat to France. It emigrated to the
U.S. during the 1930s. A slim and elongated short hair, the Burmese has
fur of a uniform deep, rich brown hue, a pointed head and large well
shaped yellow eyes. Saturn, planet of tradition and conservative values,
rules Capricorn and is in harmony with this aristocratic kitty. An
expensive and exotic beauty, the Burmese will brighten the lives of its
owner with a quiet yet playful and loyal personality.

Aquarius
January 20 – February 18
Friendly Aquarians are drawn to all that is different and off beat. The
Exotic Shorthair is their cat. This breed comes from Britain and is
thought to be a descendant of the first cats brought to England by the
Romans. The Exotic Short hair has a thick coat plushy coat that can be
spotted, cream, red tabby, grey or black. The eyes are often of two
different colors, gold and blue. It has a short, broad nose with facial
features that resemble the Persian. Adaptable and versatile, in true
Aquarian fashion, this cat welcomes new friends and a variety of life
styles. Its even temperament makes it a good choice as a mascot for a
store or office.

Pisces
February 19 – March 20
The sign of The Fish has a rapport with The Turkish Water Cat. This is a
newly emerging long haired breed. It has the unusual habit of leaping
into the pool for the sheer joy of it. Most cats have an aversion to
water but the Water Cat will actually swim with expert strokes. A white
body with striped marmalade colored markings, positioned like the Siamese
markings and amber eyes, these charming animals should be an instant hit
with dreamy, fanciful Pisces owners. Sometimes called Van cats, for the
area in Turkey where they were first bred, these felines are amusing.
They sport a feisty and comedic quality.

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