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The Age of Aquarius, All Over Again!

AgeofaquariusDavid Brooks of the NY Times is no fan of astrology but his article gives some interesting facts:

We’re living in the middle of a religious revival; it’s just that the movements that are rising are not what we normally call “religion.” The first rising movement is astrology. According to a 2018 Pew poll, 29 percent of Americans say they believe in astrology. That’s more than are members of mainline Protestant churches.

This surge in belief is primarily among the young. According to a National Science Foundation survey, 44 percent of 18- to 24-year-olds say that astrology is somewhat or very “scientific.” Unsurprisingly, online horoscope sites are booming. Stella Bugbee, editor of The Cut, told The Atlantic that in 2017 the typical horoscope got 150 percent more traffic than it had the year before.

Another surging spiritual movement is witchcraft. In 1990, only 8,000 Americans self-identified as Wiccans. Ten years later there were 134,000, and today, along with other neo-pagans, there are over a million. As Tara Isabella Burton put it in an excellent, deeply researched essay in The American Interest, “Wicca, by that estimation, is technically the fastest-growing religion in America.”

The third great rising spiritual force is mindfulness, which seems to be everywhere. The fourth is wokeness, what some have called the Great Awokening. Burton’s essay is really about how astrology and witchcraft have become important spiritual vocabularies within parts of the social justice movement.

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In March, she wrote, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez shared her birth time with the astrologer Arthur Lipp-Bonewits, who then shared her birth chart with the world, creating an online sensation. “AOC’s Aries Moon indicates that she’s emotionally fed by a certain amount of independence, self-determination, and spontaneity,” Jeanna Kadlec wrote in Allure.

During the Kavanaugh hearings, 13,000 “resistance witches” cast a hex on Brett Kavanaugh. There is now a plethora of guidebooks for how to use astrology and witchcraft to advance left-wing causes. They have names like “Magic for Resistance: Rituals and Spells for Change” and “The New Aradia: A Witch’s Handbook to Magical Resistance.”

 
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These surging movements are people’s attempts to solve the major needs of the current moment.

The first need is simply to find a way to be spiritual. People are always saying we live in a more secular age, but secularism never really comes. Humans are transcendent creatures who have spiritual experiences and instinctively appeal to supernatural powers. Even in the most secular parts of society, there is great and unfulfilled spiritual yearning.

Second, there is a widespread need to slow down, to escape the pace of life technology wants and to live at a human pace.

Third, there is a widespread need to express alienation. Interest in the occult rises during periods of transition and disillusion. It happened in the late 1960s, and it’s happening today. For many, the traditional organized religions are implicated in the existing power structures. Being occult is a way to announce that you stand on the fringe of society, that you stand against the patriarchy, against the heteronormative culture and against the structures of oppression. Political alienation manifests itself in the alt-right and the energized radical left. It makes sense that it would manifest itself in the spiritual realm, too.

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Fourth is the need for identity markers. We live at a time when many of the traditional sources of identity (ethnicity, rooted neighborhood) are being erased. Astrology tells you who you are and what traits you have. In a highly diverse society, it also tells you what sort of people you’re likely to be compatible and incompatible with. When I hear people talk about astrology, this is how they are using it.

Fifth is the desire to live within a coherent creed and community, but without having that creed impinge on your individual autonomy. Being an Orthodox Jew is a thick but binding life. The emerging spirituality is a hodgepodge spirituality. Each person borrows practices from, say, Native American, Buddhist, Christian, Jewish and SoulCycle traditions and blends them in a way he or she finds moving. There is no grand narrative, no specific way one is expected to live, no set of laws you have to obey or even a specific cult leader who might boss you around. Religion bows before individualism.

Finally, many people seem to want to be alternative without actually leaving the mainstream world. The people I know who talk about astrology sort of believe it, but they sort of don’t. Their attitude is ironical, attached and detached all at once.

Even the occultists are not really that countercultural. For example, David Salisbury’s book “Witchcraft Activism: A Toolkit for Magical Resistance” is surprisingly normal. Salisbury gives standard advice on how to be an activist. It’s just that he asks you to say a prayer to Hermes, the messenger god, when you send an important email.

I doubt that much of this will be sustainable. I doubt it’s possible to have tight community and also total autonomy, that it’s possible to detach spiritual practices from the larger narratives and cultures and still have something life-shaping. But society is groaning. New forms are coming into being. We really are living through a moment of major transitional change.


Horoscope for the Week of June 31, 2019

BLUE IVY CARTERRetrograding planets - Saturn, Pluto, Jupiter, Neptune and Mercury - manage to make our sensible little world a little wacky and unpredictable. When the world delivers a surprise, accept it with as much grace as you can muster... and re-gift.

(Blue Ivy Carter has Pluto in Capricorn)

Never miss your horoscope again -- free sign up here. Here is my favorite book on astrology and a "must" for anyone interested in learning more: Secrets from a Stargazer's Notebook: Making Astrology Work for You and here's a guide to the best books available this month. This column is (c) 2019 MADAM LICHTENSTEIN, LLC., All Rights Reserved. For Entertainment Purposes Only. Madam Lichtenstein is the author of the best selling astrology book “HerScopes ” now in its 10th printing and available as an eBook

ARIES (MARCH 21 - APRIL 20)
Dream a dream, Aries, but remember to be sensible and keep your feet planted firmly on the ground. Don’t make any major decisions based on a hunch, especially in your career or long term plans. Also, any serious discussions with family should be made very clear so no one misunderstands. Slow and careful will win the race... unless you decide to just sit this one out.

TAURUS (APRIL 21 - MAY 21)
Friends may promise you the world but may deliver something short of that. Taureans are advised to give pals a lot of patience and allow them to make mistakes. They don’t mean to over-promise but maybe they are not being clear about their capabilities. Your world will remain interesting and surprising. Keep your expectations low and you won’t be disappointed.

GEMINI (MAY 22 - JUNE 21)
While you may dream of that big promotion, it may turn out that your successes lie elsewhere. Geminis shouldn’t count on any increase in income at this time. Things are still evolving and circumstances will take time to unwind and clarify. But in the meantime you can find peace of mind with cheaper pastimes. Anyone we know...?

CANCER (JUNE 22 - JULY 23)
So many new things, people and projects are hitting your life all at once, it may be difficult to figure out which of these will have long lasting benefits. Why struggle deciding, Cancer? Just pretend that you are at the beach and everything is a wave of opportunity. Meet, greet and maybe the briney foam will gently lift you off your feet. Either that or it will be the riptide.

LEO (JULY 24 - AUGUST 23)
Be prepared for something that was previously hidden to jump out from behind the curtain and totally shock you. Leos prefer to control the situation but it will be hard to be the leader for the next few weeks. Don’t get stressed about it, though. In fact, letting others call the action may be just what you need to reduce stress and mellow out. Maybe. Just maybe.

VIRGO (AUGUST 24 - SEPTEMBER 23)
Relationships may be the source of surprises now as what you dreamed would be true, may not be. But that is not a bad thing, Virgo. In fact, maybe your personal life needs a reassessment. Consider it a breath of fresh air and use this time to figure out what and who your really want. There may even be a friend who offers good advice. Or makes a big move.

LIBRA (SEPTEMBER 24 - OCTOBER 23)
Don’t make any big promises, Libra. You will not be able to fulfill them in the way you want. Instead, find ways to just hang out and relax with friends and family. Keep your expectations low and let others decide what to do and where to go .. at least for the next few weeks. Career plans could take longer to implement so don’t stress on it. Take a long lunch.

SCORPIO (OCTOBER 24 - NOVEMBER 22)
Scorpios who don’t stick to a strict budget will find that their spending habits can get totally out of control, especially when it comes to festive pastimes and gambling. You dream big and start to form even bigger plans. But can you really afford everything your heart desires now? Hmm. Why not treat yourself to things that are more affordable? Yeah, right.

SAGITTARIUS (NOVEMBER 23 - DECEMBER 22)
Travel becomes a little more difficult as your plans may change, even in mid-journey. New information may create detours or unexpected changes. But this is part of the fun. Chalk it up to pure adventure, Sagittarius, and remain as flexible as you can. Who knows what mysteries of life will be revealed in some lost corner of the world? Just don’t get lost going home.

CAPRICORN (DECEMBER 23 - JANUARY 20)
It may be hard to just get started on new projects, Capricorn. But don’t let that dissuade you from jumping into new situations. That is what will make your life so interesting now. Relationships may morph, transform or reach a mutually acceptable transition. What do you want out of life? Your inner voice may whisper now but eventually it will shout.

AQUARIUS (JANUARY 21 - FEBRUARY 19)
Social events will take up much more of your time and energy now as friends all want your attention. Aquarians will need to make some tough decisions on what they can and cannot accomplish with their crazy schedule. Give enough time to partners and try to listen carefully to their suggestions. Any knotty miscommunication will take time to disentangle.

PISCES (FEBRUARY 20 - MARCH 20)
You make a very interesting and unique first impression, Pisces. Was this your intention? If so, go with the flow and see where it takes you. If not, be extra careful of how you look and what you say to others, especially those you don’t know well. But through it all, be confident. Show the world that not only can you dance gracefully, you can also shake the floor if you need to.

(c) 2019 MADAM LICHTENSTEIN, LLC., All Rights Reserved. For Entertainment Purposes Only.
Lichtenstein’s blog www.thestarryeye.typepad.com covers everything new age. Her astrology book HerScopes has the official Stonewall horoscope.


Lucky Numbers for the Week of June 28, 2019

Lottery ads tell us you only need a dollar and a dream. But it is also helpful to have a list of lucky numbers to help spur the good fortune ... or fortunes. So with that in mind, here are some lucky numbers that can be used in any helpful way. I gazed into a pool of water, Nostradamus-like, and contemplated the cosmos. Then I mixed the tarot cards and allowed the spirits to guide me to the cards that represent the lucky numbers for this week. Nothing is guaranteed but who knows ....?

I choose eight numbers because 8 is the number of wealth.

Here are the lucky numbers for the week of June 28-July 4, 2019:

5, 6, 21, 25, 38, 51, 52, 60

There are many ways to delve into your own consciousness to find luck and intuition. Try reading Dream Power/Improve Your Luck (Super Strength Series) and see if your dreams give you any clues and premonitions. Here's a guide to the best books available this month


Horoscope for the Week of June 24, 2019

Tom cruiseThe Sun moves into mushy and loving Cancer, making us more susceptible to mood swings and possible over-the-top reactions. What wave will rock your boat? Whatever it is, give it room to roll. Maybe it will roll away and get lost in the tides.

(Tom Cruise has Sun in Cancer)

Never miss your horoscope again -- free sign up here. Here is my favorite book on astrology and a "must" for anyone interested in learning more: Secrets from a Stargazer's Notebook: Making Astrology Work for You and here's a guide to the best books available this month. This column is (c) 2019 MADAM LICHTENSTEIN, LLC., All Rights Reserved. For Entertainment Purposes Only. Madam Lichtenstein is the author of the best selling astrology book “HerScopes ” now in its 10th printing and available as an eBook

ARIES (MARCH 21 - APRIL 20)
Family issues seem to reach a critical turning point where there is either enlightenment or resignation. What a smart Aries will do is let others air their grievances, explain their hopes and share some secrets before any major decision is reached. Who knows? Maybe a little bit of freedom will enable even difficult relatives to find a happy compromise. Maybe. Maybe.

TAURUS (APRIL 21 - MAY 21)
Anything you say this week will not only be wise but also emotionally gripping. Say it as you see it, Taurus. Then step back and see how your messages are received. You may be surprised at how much mileage you get with your honesty and connectedness to the plights of others. Then do what you were going to do anyway. You sure have them fooled!

GEMINI (MAY 22 - JUNE 21)
Geminis may be spending their time and money on emotionally enriching things - whether people, places or things. In searching for something meaningful, you may pick up assorted bits and pieces of nostalgic remembrances. Things long ago seem somehow comforting and grounded. Will the payoff be everything that you expect and want? I guess we will have to see.

CANCER (JUNE 22 - JULY 23)
You are in the center of all of the action, Cancer. As you start to roll out your best ideas with your best self, see what the combination of gumption and glamour brings. Meeting as many new and exciting people as possible will not only enlarge your circle of influence, it will also cement your ambitions. There is a lot that these folks can do for you. Ask for the right favors.

LEO (JULY 24 - AUGUST 23)
It seems like everyone’s emotions are running rampant and creating a ruckus. But you don’t have to react to everyone’s little quirky thoughts, Leo. Let the background gossip dissolve into the general static and do what you want to do when you want to do it. The secret is to not listen to others. Listen to your inner voice. You know what is right for you.

VIRGO (AUGUST 24 - SEPTEMBER 23)
Any social activity will have its thrills, chills and spills now. But it will be the practical Virgo who can manage the crowd and get people to do exactly what you want them to do. Plan a few get togethers, join a new club, get involved in a new grand movement. Who knows where it will all lead? Hopefully not into one big rambling circle.

LIBRA (SEPTEMBER 24 - OCTOBER 23)
If you find yourself rethinking any long term plan, give yourself a break and focus on other things. Libras strive for balance but you might be too emotionally wrapped up in a small aspect of a much bigger picture. Concentrate on short term gains and professional improvement. There are new paths you can take that will get you to go, go, go.

SCORPIO (OCTOBER 24 - NOVEMBER 22)
Take a vacation to a place that you have always wanted to see. Scorpios can find themselves in a rut. A little jolt of adventure will get you out of your funk and into fun. And there may even be something pithy to learn along the way. Add to your body of knowledge and, if you are up to meeting new exotic natives, you can add some knowledge to your body as well.

SAGITTARIUS (NOVEMBER 23 - DECEMBER 22)
Sagittarians are hot numbers this week as they sizzle on the scene. See how you can press and impress others as your charisma runs high and mighty. You attract anyone you want and as many at one time as you can handle. But don’t allow your passions to overtake your common sense. Sometimes you simply can’t have it all. But I guess you can certainly try!

CAPRICORN (DECEMBER 23 - JANUARY 20)
Don’t be surprised if you find that certain relationships become much more emotionally driven this week. Capricorns prefer low key discussions but be prepared to put your thoughts on high octane. Partners need much more from you. Are you prepared to give it to them? If so, take action now. If not, try to find ways to delay, compromise or strategize.

AQUARIUS (JANUARY 21 - FEBRUARY 19)
Workplace situations are on the top of your to do list. Will you solve a delicate co-worker issue or dive into your mounting pile of projects? Aquarians will dispatch all with a keen sense of management. Don’t focus on time wasters and don’t get bogged down in the details. Deftness requires quick assessment and going with your gut ... or is it your heart?

PISCES (FEBRUARY 20 - MARCH 20)
Pisces not only know how to have a good time, they know how to provide one for everybody. Your mission is to capitalize on your social skills and parlay your creativity for the greater group festivities. What will you conjure that will entertain while still tugging at the heartstrings for an emotionally satisfying time? You will think of something clever.

(c) 2019 MADAM LICHTENSTEIN, LLC., All Rights Reserved. For Entertainment Purposes Only.
Lichtenstein’s highly acclaimed astrology book “HerScopes” has the Stonewall horoscope.


Lucky Numbers for the Week of June 21, 2019

Lottery ads tell us you only need a dollar and a dream. But it is also helpful to have a list of lucky numbers to help spur the good fortune ... or fortunes. So with that in mind, here are some lucky numbers that can be used in any helpful way. I gazed into a pool of water, Nostradamus-like, and contemplated the cosmos. Then I mixed the tarot cards and allowed the spirits to guide me to the cards that represent the lucky numbers for this week. Nothing is guaranteed but who knows ....?

I choose eight numbers because 8 is the number of wealth.

Here are the lucky numbers for the week of June 21-27, 2019:

3, 4, 12, 26, 29, 34, 40, 58

There are many ways to delve into your own consciousness to find luck and intuition. Try reading Dream Power/Improve Your Luck (Super Strength Series) and see if your dreams give you any clues and premonitions. Here's a guide to the best books available this month