FEBRUARY 19 – MARCH 20
“Science without religion is lame, religion without science is blind.” Einstein
(Albert Einstein hand prints from the Marianne Raschig collection)
Pisces is an archetype for spiritual growth. It’s the astrological home of Neptune (Poseidon, King Triton), ruler of the seas. Water symbolizes emotion, instinct, personal feelings, and the collective unconscious. It’s the most calming and destructive force in nature. Neptune symbolizes any substance that alters consciousness, creates illusions, and fosters delusions. That includes prescription and recreational drugs, nicotine, alcohol, and any kind of smoke. Philip Morris (IPO March 15, 1923, Sun in Pisces) catalyzed a tsunami of cancer by maintaining the delusion that cigarette smoking isn’t harmful while creating and fostering the illusion that it’s cool to smoke. Neptune also rules the arts. Michelangelo, Renoir, Chopin, Ravel, and Nijinsky were Piscean. Major scientific advances are attributed to creative Pisceans like Alexander Graham Bell and Albert Einstein. Religion is Neptune’s mundane correspondence. Spirituality is its esoteric equivalent. Religion without spirituality is blind.
Pisces is the most sensitive, least acquisitive, and most introverted of all twelve types. They’re capable of incredible foresight, but are frequently misunderstood because they convey their visions to others through the lens of feeling. When their head and heart are balanced, Pisces can be the most powerful of all types. George Washington was a Pisces. Former CEOs of Citigroup, IBM, Merck, DuPont, and Bank One were Piscean. One of the youngest most powerful Pisces CEOs is Michael Dell of Dell Computer. Like the rebellious daughter of King Triton (Neptune / Poseidon), ruler of the Seas and the unconscious, Michael can swim anywhere and dream whatever he wants. Michael has the natural ability to tap into the collective unconscious. He intuitively gets a sense of what the public needs and hones in on that. He must keep an eye out for Ursula the Octopus, a conglomerate who lusts for control of his empire.
Pisceans are well suited to teaching, human resources, and the helping professions. They’re at home in the visual arts and music. Their strengths are compassion, humility, and faith, though they’re not known for being decisive. Both private and spiritual, Pisces can be challenging to get to know. Their trust needs to be earned over time. Unevolved Piscean types are impressionable and easily influenced. Many have a strong need to escape reality when circumstances get too difficult. Some become substance abusers (Johnny Cash, Jerry Lewis, Liza Minelli). Personally, I love Pisceans. My father was a Pisces. My brother is a Pisces. My daughter is a Pisces.
My first friend in New York City was Piscean. I knew her as Purnima, a name given to her in a Sufi commune where she had lived in England. Purnima has small hands with long slender palms and long delicate fingers with conical tips. Her palms are covered with a fine network of lines that seem as fragile as a spider’s web. Anytime you see a spider’s web in palms you must be careful what you say. A person who is very impressionable will remember the “bad things”, even if you didn’t say any.
Purnima was born as Fran and raised in New York City by a controlling alcoholic mother. Fran visited her emotionally absent estranged father as often as she could. She was convinced he loved her, although he was never able to verbalize it. Fran told me stories about how as a pre-teen she’d arrive at a police station to redeem her mother after a drunken brawl, only to be psychologically abused by her when they got home. Her short index fingers on both hands never got to grow longer because her mother constantly told her how worthless she was. Fran also had very flexible thumbs that embodied how easily she adapted to changing circumstances. There were so many distractions. It took Fran nearly fifty years to learn to say “NO”.
When I first met Purnima, she was a vegan chain smoker. That seemed incongruous to me, but I learned that inconsistency is consistent among Neptunian types. Purnima was a magnet for strays and fixer-uppers. She attracted the mangiest dogs, cats, mice, and the most damaged men around. She must have kissed a thousand frogs and strived to heal a hundred beasts, but none turned into princes. In hindsight, I had been one of her worthy causes. Purnima knew what I was feeling before I did. I’m glad she adopted me.
Forced to go to Church every Sunday, Fran witnessed hypocrisy in action. She had very little respect for formalized religion. Nonetheless, no matter how ugly or despicable the person or circumstance, Purnima had an uncanny ability to see a goodness and beauty in everyone and everything. Purnima was a wonderful poet and musician. Her poetry would have made great lyrics for songs. I encouraged her to perform and publish her work, but worldly ideas didn’t appeal to her. She felt that nothing was hers. Instead, she was a conduit for spirit. Purnima had no problem putting anything and everything into a spiritual context. I was amazed because she was an inch from poverty most of the time and yet she’d give away her last dime to someone needier than her. For a few days each week, Fran did meaningless temporary work for meaningless companies for too little money in order to survive.
Every time I’d put myself on a pedestal, Purnima would knock me off. She helped others, but had a hard time helping herself. I was unable to help except to listen and acknowledge her. Much of her time was spent dwelling in her past. That’s a challenge for feeling types in general. Purnima lives in San Francisco. She still checks in on me to make sure I’m staying on track and encourages me to keep evolving.
Hand of a Terrorist?
Absolutely! Would any palmist anywhere have had the foresight to predict that from a photo of his hand? Not a chance. Osama’s long narrow palms and closely held fingers and thumb illustrate a healthy feeling type. Interpol says his birthday is March 10 1957. His Sun, Venus, and Mercury were in Pisces and his Moon was in Cancer.
What can we see from this picture? This may piss a lot of people off, but based on his hand morphology, Osama bin Laden appears to be a healthy type. As a man of great religious faith, he believed deeply in his ideologies and convictions. Don’t forget that bin Laden was a rich Arab who gave up a life of wealth and luxury in the holy land to fight for his fellow Muslims in Afghanistan. The Taliban regarded him as a Saint.
Osama’s closely held fingers and thumb reveal a good team player who may also be cautious and shy. His strong index finger shows natural leadership ability and talent for directing and managing people. His long strong straight middle finger made for excellent organizing and planning. A long ring finger symbolizes a sense of style and a natural flair for the dramatic. Though his pinkie finger appears a bit low set (reticent to put himself in front), it’s long and straight, which is a sign of a powerful communicator.
Osama wasn’t born a terrorist and international pariah. That was nurture. We supported his transformation to monster when we conveniently forgot how he helped us evict the Soviets from Afghanistan. He was getting lots of “at a boys” and pats on the back from us back then. Osama became more militant as we selfishly abandoned his people when we no longer needed him. It’s no wonder Osama evaded being caught for so long. He received his ultra-security training from our CIA.
Osama was well aware of the power of symbolism. He may have had no remorse, but I’m positive he got no pleasure from killing over 3000 innocent people. His goal was to destroy powerful symbols of western testosterone; ego, greed, and global dominance. Tragically, the people who died in the 9 /11/ 2001 bombings were collateral damage.
The only outer planet to pass through Pisces in the twentieth century was Uranus, from 1919 to 1928. When Uranus completed its eighty-four year cycle through the zodiac in 2003, it began its journey through the sign of Pisces, crossing into Aries at the end of 2011. Let’s observe the cultural similarities between the two times Uranus has passed through Pisces in recent history.
When World War I ended in 1919, discrimination, immigration, and consumerism grew as Uranus left the sign of Aquarius. When Uranus moved into Pisces, a new kind of rebellion began. Over four million steel workers and miners walked off the job to protest too many work hours with “inhumane pay”.
All three Presidents in office during Uranus’s first transit through Pisces (Harding, Coolidge, and Hoover) promoted ‘government business partnerships’ as the focus of their presidencies. They put material wealth and unobstructed corporate power in the forefront of the nation’s political, social, and cultural fabric. Our government was cozily in bed with big business. In its second transit through Pisces, George W. Bush awarded our healthcare system to the pharmaceutical industry and insurance companies, our energy needs to oil companies, and the security of our airports and seaports in the hands of private enterprise. He tried to donate our Social Security to the stock market.
With Uranus in Pisces, traditional values of thrift and austerity gave way to neo-consumerism and buying on credit. Two out of three Americans had electricity, refrigerators, and washing machines. Spending on recreation tripled. Henry Ford announced cars in Green and Maroon as well as black. Mass produced foods such as Rice Krispies, Lender’s Bagels, Mounds Bars, Betty Crocker, and Peter Pan Peanut Butter influenced mass taste and created the illusion of an easier more convenient life. Movie houses, chain stores, and radio advertising proliferated. By the end of Uranus’s transit through Pisces, movie attendance had outstripped church attendance. Consumer magazines like Modern Romance challenged moral codes. Many critics believed consumerism was driving Americans into a soulless existence of materiality and conformity. Sinclair Lewis, famous author of ‘Babbitt’, highlighted the delusion of Uranus in Pisces when he blamed mass production and consumption for “having created a bloodless, loveless, and standardized world”.
The 30th President, “Silent Cal” Coolidge (same birthday as USA) said, “The business of America is business”. He also opened his mouth to say, “Biological laws tell us that certain divergent people will not mix or blend”. He was speaking about the “inferior races” of Asia. Meanwhile, there was a resurgence of the Ku Klux Klan that targeted African Americans, blacks, immigrants, Catholics, and Jews. In 1925, the Klan marched on Washington DC and drew over 40,000 hooded members. New immigration laws reduced the stream of immigrants to a trickle when congress decided admissions of immigrants should be on a quota basis – reduced to 150,000 new immigrants a year.
Uranus in Pisces symbolizes the conflict between science and religion. The socially correct term for Intelligent Design was Creationism. Religion clashed with modern science during Uranus in Pisces transits in both centuries. Tennessee legislators voted it unlawful for any teacher in a state supported school “to teach any theory that denies the story of man’s creation as taught in the bible”. They could not teach that man descended from a lower order of animals. A high school biology teacher named John Scopes tried to teach the theory of evolution. As the defendant in the famous “Scopes Monkey Trial” legal battle, John Scopes ultimately lost. Culture wars clashed over school curriculum, obscenity, censorship, race, and sexuality in theater and literature.
In the world of design, the Bahaus School of Architecture was created in Germany. Its less is more philosophy influenced product and building design. When I graduated from Carnegie Mellon U. as an industrial designer, intelligent design was about making and saving money for manufacturers. No one cared much about waste, except when it was costly. Intelligent design is very important. Designers select materials to be used in a product. They choose whether sustainable resources are used, how much energy will be consumed during production, what pollutants will be generated, and how the product will ultimately be disposed of, recycled, or reused.
Common sense is not necessarily good sense. If man were intelligently designed, we wouldn’t be racing towards self-destruction. Instead, we’d be healthier, happier, and taking better care of our planet, ourselves, and each other. Seven Commandments say, “Thou shalt not”. The negative language affirms they’ll be broken. Perhaps God could have framed all her rules and regulations more constructively.
Here are a few similarities between the two most recent transits of Uranus in Pisces:
1919 – The worst baseball (Black Sox) scandal in history happened when a grand jury brought indictments against eight players from the Chicago White Sox. They were accused of throwing the 1919 World Series and eventually found not guilty.
2003 – The illicit use of steroids became the biggest scandal in modern baseball.
1919 – The eighteenth amendment prohibited the manufacture, sale, or transportation of intoxicating liquors, which encouraged home brewing and bootlegging.
2003 – George W. Bush prohibited Medicare from negotiating drug prices. A black market for drugs from India and Canada began to thrive.
1921 – First formal investigations of the Teapot Dome oil scandals were initiated.
2003 – USA invaded Iraq under false pretenses in order to secure oil resources.
1924 – The worst tornado in US history obliterated 35 towns in Tennessee, Kentucky, Missouri, Indiana, and Illinois.
2005 – Hurricane Katrina devastated New Orleans and the Gulf Coast.
Two cycles of Uranus in Pisces passed. Much has happened. Not much has changed