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Taurus Confidential (for Sun and ascendant)

By Eric Francis

Taurus (April 19- May 20)

Aahh yes, the whole career thing. Does that UFO ever actually land in your backyard? Do you get invited in for cornbread? Or is it just this thing you keep hearing rumors about?

And why do we call it a career? Why don’t we call it our mission on Earth? Maybe that’s because so many people have careers that are not even vaguely involved with their mission on the planet. I hate to say it, but most of us were sold out by 6th grade or before; but for sure we were sold out the moment we stuck that word ‘career’ onto our lives.

The oldest known usage of career is from 1534, when it meant running a course, from an earlier word that meant road or racecourse. If you want a career, you’re volunteering for the race; what used to be called the rat race. Not your style, I know. You have better uses for your competitive spirit.

Anyway, your astrology says something different: your astrology, utmost and topmost, is about discovering yourself and applying not competition but vision to your gradually focusing sense of presence in the world; which is close to your sense of mission, and (happily) is directly related to the current turmoil the world is in. If you roam around town to all the hottest intellectual covens or email your whole address book seeking advice, you are unlikely to find that many people who get the concept of vision. This is your role, not theirs. In a sense, it is the answer to everything: for you. Try as you may (or may have) you cannot live by a template, a plan, or anyone’s notion of proper and, still be happy.

The more insane the world appears to you, the more opportunity you have to discover yourself. And no matter how messed up the world seems, and no matter how confused you may think you are, you are in a rare moment of opportunity. How do you access that? The first thing you must do is give yourself permission. Permission for what? To be you, recognizing that you are different than anyone else. This is the revelation, and revolution, of the coming seasons; your turning point; the structural change in how you relate to your existence. If you don’t know what I’m talking about now, you will in six months. Mark your calendar.

Yet all the opportunity in the world — and there is plenty in your world — is worthless if you don’t give yourself permission to say yes to yourself, and then to actually be who you are, without any notion of pretense; give yourself permission to make decisions; and most of all permission to get it wrong.

That’s what I said. If I had to put a banner over my counseling room door, it would say: If you’re not fucking up, you’re not doing it right. Errors, rejection, trial and error: these are all the signs of exploring success. These are the ways we test our ideas and discard the ones that no longer work, or that never worked, including our ideas about ourselves. This is how we cultivate faith in ourselves: not hope, but faith.

A Relationship to Existence

One of the things you are exploring this year is your relationship to existence. This is actually a challenging question for you, on several accounts: for one thing, the location of the sign Aries in your chart. Aries (wherever it may land in our chart) tells us something about our self-concept and sense of identity. You have Aries in the solar 12th house — the really mysterious house where everything has the approximate logic of a dream. Things don’t really exist in the 12th house; they waft in and out of reality. So for as solid and as tangible as you may aspire to be, there is often a missing element of self, and this can drive you a little nuts. It’s often like your ‘self’ is hidden in another dimension.

Mars rules this house; and Mars has a second role, as the ruler of your opposite sign, Scorpio: it’s also your relationship planet. So the planet that represents your hidden or missing self is the same planet that represents your relationships: and when you put those two together, you get boundary issues. Is this other person you’re with, really your secret self? Hmmm, sometimes it seems like they are. Your inner twin can seem to double as your outer twin or relationship partner. And then where do you fit in?

Consider how your relationship life seems to dance between the goal of total autonomy, and then a corresponding experience or even intention of emotional dependency. How many times have you wondered whether you would ever find your way out of this dichotomy?

I suggest that you not think of this as being about personal relationships as much as a relationship to existence. Your relationship to existence is described by Scorpio as your opposite sign. Scorpio is sending you vibes that everything you do, such as breathing, taking a bath or moving house, requires you to change. You in turn react by trying to be as stable as you can, nearly all the time. Yet at the same time, you are enticed into a continuous relationship with surrender.

What can happen, in this tense situation, is that you go for all or nothing. You live an energetic state that can push you to extremes of polarization. What Mars retrograde in Leo is doing is working to get you to integrate those polarities within yourself. It’s almost as if you have to consume black and white and digest them into a few thousand shades of gray — the ones you so often miss. The activities and experiences of the world will sometimes assist with this, but until we somehow see the ‘other’ as an inner phenomenon, and make a conscious relationship with it, we’re likely to be lost.

With Mars retrograde, you are being taken on a trip back in the past that has many different expressions, some of which I will cover in this reading.

Life is Tangible, Not Abstract

In understanding Taurus, we have the question of why people with a strong element of this sign tend to see the world in such abstract terms: that is, why you tend to get lost in your head. The missing-self idea explains this in part; but we can account for this to two other traits: idealism and perfectionism. The perfectionism comes from having Virgo in your house of experiments and play. Virgo is cautious and experiments necessarily require a risk. There is a contradiction implied. You often respond by turning risk into a mental exercise.

Many of the best discoveries are accidents, occurring because something went wrong. Art, covered by this house, works the same way; and so does sex. Yet Virgo’s tendency is to transform these into ideas instead of experiences. Your part needs to be translating them right back into direct, grounded experiences; and this is a zone of life where perfection is not a value — though Virgo doesn’t necessarily agree. Saturn makes one last angle into this house later in the year, so you have some time to push a few limits and understand the necessity to take risks.

Then we can look at Capricorn’s role in your life. Any form of ism is powerful in your chart: you have Capricorn working in your belief system angle, and that wants to codify things, and to organize ideas in a structure that conforms to the past. Your chart suggests that you are strongly influenced by the religious beliefs of your parents, often in ways you cannot see. Religious beliefs doesn’t mean accepting that Jesus was born and laid in a manger on Dec. 25 of the year zero. Rather, it’s about an approach to life that includes a kind of orthodoxy that pervades your ideas: there is a way to do things right; you can find it in a book; every other way is suspect. You may think this is your material, but it’s actually on loan from your ancestors.

Fortunately, Pluto is working this house now, and Pluto wants to detonate those belief systems faster than you can recall what you are supposed to believe about any particular subject. One of the best ways to get you into the present moment is to remove any bearing on the past that you may have depended on. Works like a charm, and Pluto is on the job. With nothing to retreat into, you show up present and accounted for.

Aquarius on the Midheaven

Nobody loves a theory like Aquarius — and this is the sign associated with your professional life: the career UFO.

Part of your career struggle is that you tend to make it abstract. You might think in long spans of time rather than in terms of what you want to do today or this year. You might not recognize that day-to-day building of creative momentum is always an experiment, and it continuously calls for moving from theory to practice; from the general to the specific.

One enormous issue that affects your mission is your quest to find your rightful place in the community: a fully constructive place for yourself in the family of mankind that reflects who you are, why you are here, and moreover, why we are all here. This is a tall order, but Aquarius so prominent in your chart asks no less. You’ll get better results if you see everything as an expression of this theme, rather than looking for special activities that reflect it. This will help eliminate the uncertainty factor.

Neptune has been involved in your professional life for a decade, mingling this quest for expression in idealism, denial and a vague sense of mission. This would be Neptune in Aquarius, your solar 10th house. You may have told yourself over and over: What I want to do is too idealistic.

Chiron came along five years ago and with any luck stirred up a crisis. Suddenly you had to do what you had to do. Did you listen? Did you respond to the crisis by going forward or by retreating? Now Chiron and Neptune are at the end of their one-year conjunction, and the message is: get clear.

Learn from your errors, including your struggle with making decisions that you stick to. Claim ownership of your ideals. Make a list of what you’re in denial of. Update your resume, starting from a blank page. This process alone will give you faith in what you have already accomplished, and reveal a pattern.

Inner and Outer Worlds, Unite!

Much of what has distracted you from achievement is your constant calling inward; an elusive ‘search for yourself’ that seems to divide your inner world from your outer world. This is a hot theme in the sky these days, associated with Mars retrograde in Leo; I’ve devoted a big swath of this reading (and indeed all the signs) to sorting out that transit. There are times when your inner search may be a productive quest; at others it may be a version of self-obsession and perfectionism that you desperately want to exchange for conscious participation in the world. It’s time to honor that need to participate, and trust that you will foster your inner search by doing so.

There comes a point in any well-lived life when the seemingly different inner and outer quests are built on the same foundation and guided by the same purpose; driven by the same necessities and the same, well, the word is dharma: the devotion to becoming, in harmony with the world. There comes a time when everything you do in your life must support everything else you do in your life, and you are close to that point of integration.

Signs of change are palpable; I don’t have to tell you this, but I’m here to confirm it. You’re at many turning points, which are one turning point. You’ve been dismantling the thought structures of your past, of your parents, of your education and your religious upbringing for a while: as of today, they are so brittle they will crumble when you so much as lean on them; and that which crumbles when you do lean on it is indeed a thing of the past. Yet you may not see the extent to which these relics of the past get in your way, often by giving you a false place to hide.

Your charts suggest you may be intimidated by the future. There is something quaint about you; you love the way things were, even before you were alive. The only person I know who collects etiquette books (and knows what they say) is a Taurus man. Another Taurus man I know has the best collection of books on the history of sex between here and New York City. Taurus is often concerned with how things were done right in the past, and preserving the past. This can make grammar seem more important than theme or message. Clear graffiti is more meaningful than a pointless book; even though the book is allegedly a more proper method of communication. The past makes a potentially fun hobby and a terrible crutch.

Yet alongside this, you possess the DNA of a pioneer, which is getting fired up like a lightning storm. To be a pioneer, one must be willing not just to endure, but to explore the unknown. You must be willing to have things go poorly, at least part of the time; willing to learn from your errors instead of getting hung up on them. There’s a lot in that one piece, as you know: but as Pluto moves through your 9th solar house of faith, belief and (with Capricorn involved) the ideas of the past, you have quite significant help in this project.

A Bit About Fitting In

As I mentioned, Aquarius is in your solar 10th house, your house of career and reputation. As one so concerned with how you are perceived and whether you fit in, you would do well to study this house carefully: to understand all things Aquarian, such as the drive for conformity. You may come up against the idea that in order to do something in the world, you must give up your precious individuality. The group nature of Aquarius intimidates you: the sense of others having control over you or your reputation. You don’t want others deciding anything for you. And as long as you keep telling yourself that, you will create a standoff.

This is what I will call defensive individualism. Being who you are is in truth not about defending yourself over what you might not be; it’s about a positive, direct expression of your existence. Someone can define themselves as a vegetarian; but the question is, what do they eat? Someone can define themselves as ‘not religious’, but the question is, what values do they espouse?

So the question is for you: how do you want to participate in society, as an affirmative statement? I think you actually do know. In fact I think that knowingness is so intense as to be burning up your mind, and causing you to reconsider your whole life to allow it to happen. Yet it may be scaring the bejesus out of you.

Mars Retrograde: Security and Desire

You connect desire to emotional security; and being desired is connected to you feeling emotionally secure. More to the point, desire is how you know you’re alive. There’s a complex reasoning process involved in the deduction of something simple; but it’s a little like how you know a patient you’re caring for is getting better because suddenly they’re hungry. That hunger drives you, and it reminds you that you’re alive, and so too does being hungered for.

This offers you a short-term solution to the question of both sexual need and personal confidence. There is a paradox involved, though, which is that the kinds of passions you enjoy the most are rarely the most stable or dependable. And there is the other part of your nature, which seeks stability and certainty; and that usually means making sure things are always a little more like yesterday than like tomorrow.

The thing is, passion changes everything — if you let it inspire you to action. Passion evokes the future. Holding familiar ground and a sentimental attachment to the past is the opposite of passion. Have you ever made an effort to reconcile these two seemingly different sides of your mind? These two polarities, which exist in such an uncomfortable tension? Has it occurred to you that they are in a constant reaction to one another, creating a psychic charge akin to the poles of a battery?

All matters of security are under renovation by Mars retrograde in Leo.

You’re a Taurus, and your sign is ruled by Venus. In the chess game of astrology, Venus is the planet that represents you. Scorpio is your opposite sign — your 7th solar house that describes your partners and relationships. The traditional ruler of Scorpio is Mars. Therefore, what Mars is doing describes your relationships and to a real extent, what the people you are involved with are experiencing. But moreover, it’s about how you are experiencing them, which means, your own experience.

Both Leo and the 4th have echoes of childhood, in particular your relationship with your father and how you did or did not build your emotional foundations on that experience. The 4th is about the emotional reality of your childhood that still exists today. Leo is about your sense of fearless vitality as a child. Both Leo and the 4th involve the father; that’s a point of harmony. There is a paradox (like many things about you). The 4th takes no risks and Leo takes any risk it feels like taking. The 4th seeks to conserve and Leo seeks to experiment. The 4th likes to stay in the house and Leo wants to tromp around and find the Sun on a rainy day. This paradox describes your emotional nature and your relationship to your dad.

Mars, the planet of initiative, desire and your partners, is retrograde in Leo. This tells us that your whole concept of security in a relationship is up for reassessment. To understand this idea, we need to look at the early childhood material of the 4th house and Leo. Our parents, whatever our relationship to them, are the foundation of our existence; and working out the complex emotions of those relationships is the original lifelong process.

Part of the complexity is that a sexual aspect of the relationship is always involved (the common ground between parents, lovers and children is sex; lovers make sex and sex makes kids and kids make us parents, and so on); but due to the current taboo on knowing anything about ourselves (especially about sex), we cannot openly say it’s involved.

Here is what it boils down to, in one sentence. Are you experiencing your erotic desire or desirability as a way to feel valued in the world, and as a reminder that you’re worthy of your own respect? And are you doing this at the expense of other, more effective methods of accomplishing the same thing?

Seeking Value and Money

This is a good time to bring up the theme of money. I say this because it relates to Leo (gold) and father (says Freud, who I believe on this point). The usual paradoxes of your life apply here. I remember when I was a younger astrology student reading and hearing about how good with money Taurus people are. Then for the next 15 years I studied Taureans, and I discovered that a lot of you have some significant discomfort with money; and often significant financial problems that you don’t really understand.

The thing is, you always do maintain a certain level of comfort and the appearance of affluence. You might have a dime in your pocket and minus $11 on your debit card; but you look good and your house is warm and you don’t miss a meal. Knowing this, I would propose that it’s safe for you to honor your higher goals, remembering that money itself is not one of them. Yes, you can seek cash and property; but only at the not-so-small expense of your soul.

Given that money is big news these days (they are printing a lot of the stuff), let’s consider the relationship. Money in our society is a form of validation. It’s what we use to buy food and snow tires and iTunes songs and your kids’ college tuition; but it’s also a form of validation. Notably, it’s also considered a form of security. Normally, astrology gives money matters to the 2nd and 8th houses (for you, Gemini and Sagittarius, respectively). I’ll get there in a moment. Let’s consider the security issues involved with the Leo/4th house conversation.

Because Mars retrograde is saying 1) look to the past and 2) go deeper, the first place we need to look is Leo/4th house. If you want more money, or if you want to resolve some of your issues with money, study your father’s relationship to money. He was different than you, that is for sure, but you picked up some of his values and his habits.

Ask yourself questions like, what did he do for money? Did he love the stuff, curse it, or both; or did he have a healthy relationship to it? If you think it was or was not healthy, be specific with yourself about why. What did he associate money with? For example, power, safety, influence, success? Or food, shelter and pleasure? You need to understand each one of those dimensions.

Part of your situation involves having Gemini in the 2nd house of money and resources. You feel two different ways about financial success. You have two belief systems that are trying to operate at the same time. If you try to do this unconsciously, you will definitely have some significant problems; you can save yourself a lot of grief by being fully aware of any splits in your values system.

On the other side of this axis is Sagittarius. For you this is the 8th solar house: that of other people’s resources. Here is something more akin to your financial destiny, though the key to success is through visionary partnerships. This aspect of your life is under the influence of Jupiter, which is about the most interesting planet in the sky starting in 2009 through 2011. Referring back to the career material I covered in the introduction (the stunning aspects of 2009 involving Jupiter, in your solar 10th house), the key to success is visionary partnerships.

I suggest that you surround yourself with people who are optimistic about your talent. To live up to your potential or even come close, you would enter those relationships with both a vision for yourself and for the relationship. This is not about ‘the other’; it’s about how you relate to the other. You do tend to rely on others for the vision. But this will only get you a fraction of the benefit of those relationships.

There are some very big developments coming in this area, if you are paying attention and if you are willing to take the chance of having tomorrow be different than today.

Seeking Yourself in Relationships

One of the themes of your life, carried forward from 2009, is that you are on an inner path more than an outer path right now. One thing you may be experiencing is that neither you nor any partner (or potential partner) are growing at quite the same pace. You take a surge forward as they go inward; they take a surge forward as you go inward; and it seems like finding an emotional or spiritual meeting point is challenging. Under this energy it’s easy for your relationships to disintegrate.

Consider that an authentic partner is someone with whom you can share your inner journey, and someone who is nourished by sharing his or her inner journey with you. This is likely to be more vital for you than for your partners. Taurus, perhaps more than any other sign, has its inner condition reflected in its relationships. This has been particularly true with last year’s Venus retrograde and this year’s Mars retrograde in such deeply introspective angles of your chart.

Because Aries is the sign before your own (your ‘secret self’), its ruler Mars also doubles as the planet that represents your hidden and often elusive sense of self.

Think back to when Venus was retrograde in Aries, in the spring of 2009. This represented a phase of deep soul searching, with a momentary glimpse of your future existence: the future, when you’ve made peace with yourself and are ready to take responsibility for your own destiny. Consider what you were going through in terms of finding yourself. Try to remember some of the details — this will work out to be one of the most instructive phases of your life relating to your personal growth. In Next World Stories, I suggested that you keep a notebook — maybe you did. In those days, you had access to information about yourself that you don’t normally have. Much of that involved how difficult it is for you to get a handle on who you really are inside.

There is something about your struggle to feel secure in the world that involves the sense that some vital aspect of who you are is tucked away in another dimension. You keep trying to get into that dimension, or to act from there, and yet at times you wonder whether it really exists; whether you’re not chasing some dream of yourself.

Jupiter Conjunct Uranus: From Dream to Discovery

Once when I was early in therapy and new to astrology, after many years of struggle getting to know myself, I woke up one morning with the feeling that my life was really my life. I felt like my apartment had been inverted, and I was waking up on the ceiling: the feeling of total reorientation was that palpable. When these moments happen, they are not entirely predictable; but it’s possible to prepare the way. Preparation for you is about loosening up your mind.

The most spectacular astrology of 2010 occurs in your 12th solar house, Aries. The 12th is the most challenging house for nearly everyone; but having Aries, the sign of self, in the most elusive of the houses is what can give you the feeling of being lost in your own sauce.

Yet for the past year, up to the present moment, you have done so much in terms of discovering who you are. Yet do you really believe you exist?

This year would be the perfect scene for a life-changing discovery about yourself: you may just be standing somewhere one day and notice that you’re really there and that this gives you something — power, the ability to choose, freedom, relief, that changes you entirely.

This can easily lead to a real-time experiment with your full potential: bravery based on knowing who you are, which is different than the game of contemplating your potential. When your inner universe lights up the rest of the universe from inside you, you will know you exist. Then, suddenly, the question of whether you feel ‘safe’ or ‘secure’ will be irrelevant. I dare say, you seem determined to discover that there are much better ways to understand yourself and what you want.

2 Responses to “Taurus Confidential (for Sun and ascendant)”

  1. carolyn eggers says:

    I would like to subscribe again to Planet Waves. What is chelsea’s phone # again?
    Thanks for your wonderful work!

  2. daniele says:

    hi! just started reading (got about half way) and will print this out. you really are wonderful. i love you! what can i say? every time i have read you, you go deep, very deep, and very rich and right…in other words, you rock!!
    thank you for your work. can’t wait to print this out and read it all.
    from a grateful reader,
    daniele in san francisco.

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