The dogma of compassion

Not many would deny that compassion is a virtue. Some would even say it is the opposite of dogma. On a fundamental level, that is true. Yet it is possible for compassion to become dogmatic when it is defined too narrowly, and begins to take on a form of brutal piety.

I had this bizarre exchange with a friend recently. Here’s how it went. The details have been altered slightly but the form is essentially the same.

Friend: Hi, how’re you?

Me: Not too good. I’ve just had some bad news… [I was about to explain that someone I was close to had died, so I was feeling particularly fragile.]

Friend: Hey, you know, my bunions are giving me trouble again. I could barely do my shopping at the supermarket. I was hobbling as I pushed the cart. Even the old ladies were giving me funny looks. [The said bunions had been the topic of many a dreary conversation for several months.]

Me: I’m sorry, but I can’t really talk about your feet today.

Friend (defensive and irate): Don’t you care about my health!? Where’s your compassion?

Me: Urrr…?

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Full Moon dreaming

I wonder if other people have been having vivid dreams lately. I dream a lot but was always too lazy to keep a dream journal until a week ago. As a result, my recall is getting better. I have been getting glimpses of lucidity too. Lucid dreaming occurs when one is aware that one is dreaming. Some people report being able to consciously manipulate the dreamscape, talk to characters in the dream and so on. I haven’t got that far but I recall thinking ‘Oh, I’m in a dream. Let’s try floating a bit.’ It was fleeting but I woke up feeling like anything is possible.

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Feel the intensity yet?

That was a rhetorical question. I don’t really have the words to describe it. So I’ll just point you to those who do.

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Before Venus, and after

Toilette der Venus, Peter Paul Rubens, 1612–15

So what was the Venus occultation, otherwise known as the transit of Venus across the Sun, like for everyone? (about this transit, see astrobarry, Lynn Hayes, and Eric Francis)

All this activity in Gemini — eclipses, Venus, Jupiter — is activating my Gemini stellium and descendant (not to mention all that activity in Virgo and Pisces, too), but not yet in ways that I can fully grasp. There is a palpable sense of a ‘before’ and ‘after’ though. A sense that old ways of doing and thinking are rapidly becoming outdated. I’m not yet sure what form the ‘new’ ways might take, but I’m pretty sure the old ways won’t work anymore.

All I seem to be able to do right now is just be ready. Be ready to run, glide, flow, when the call comes (Jupiter?).

It’s all a bit scary, and a bit exciting too. What a summer this promises to be.

Image source: Wikimedia Commons.

Whirligig week

I wonder if anyone else is feeling the weird energy this week? It feels somewhat like Mercury retrograde, only more manic — and in some cases, frantic.

I’ve had so many incidents this week where sudden announcements or decisions would spring up only to be overturned very soon after. I’ve been told someone got an award, then learned they didn’t. Or that I had to work with someone, only to find out I might not have to. In some cases, people have said one thing, but meant another. Events have been planned, then cancelled, then reinstated or moved. Things seems to lurch from side to side, and I’m feeling slightly seasick.

The energy is unsettled and people seem to be frazzled and exhausted. Is it the buildup to the intensity of the Scorpio Full Moon? Or the restless Arian Mercury trying to pull away from dogged Saturn? Or Mars seeking to escape the clutches of foggy Neptune?

A way of tapping into the energy more usefully, I’m discovering, is to pause before reacting too quickly. Circumstances may change anyway.

Image: Wheel gymnastics, Wikimedia Commons.

Spiked!

In these trying economic times, my workplace is becoming more and more toxic. So much fear and tension and anxiety about. Not to mention the hostility.

I’m noticing that when some people are threatened, they can throw out spikes from their energy fields, even when their words are officious and polite. The spikes can emanate even from an email — I can virtually feel it bristling.

I received one of those emails this morning and spent half the day dragging the negativity around with me until I was reminded to distinguish what was mine and what wasn’t. Judith Orloff offers some advice on how to separate one’s own emotions from others’, especially if you tend to absorb them like a sponge.

I read a blog post a long time ago (can’t seem to find it now) about the importance of remembering to ask the question: ‘Whose garbage is this and what is it doing in my bag?’ Whose garbage are we carrying around and why do we continue to do so?

In the days before the Taurus new moon, I feel the urge for a psychic spring clean.

Image source: Pufferfish, Wikimedia Commons

Pluto in Capricorn: Changing your relationship to the past

I posted some time ago about how Pluto’s transit into Capricorn seems to be turning our relationship to ageing (Capricorn) inside out (Pluto). It has been well noted that Capricorns seem to get younger as they get older.

This talk by 80s aerobics icon, Jane Fonda, seems to encapsulate that spirit as she enters the ‘third act’ of life. With her Capricorn ascendant and a late Sagittarius Sun (chart from Astrodatabank), Fonda is no stranger to Pluto transits in recent years.

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