We are having a partial Solar Eclipse in Aquarius on February 15th/16th 2018 depending on where you are located in the world. It is a supercharged New Moon with a longer term influence than a regular New Moon. It will only be visible in parts of South America and Antarctica which includes most of Argentina, the Southern half of Chile, Uruguay, and the Southern tips of Paraguay and Brazil.
However, even if it is not visible in your geographic location, the energetic effects of all eclipses still affect everyone on the planet. This Solar Eclipse is followed by a Lunar Eclipse in Leo that occurred two weeks prior and is part of a series of eclipses happening in the Leo-Aquarius axis that started subtly in early 2017 but became more predominant last summer after the nodes of the Moon shifted into these signs in May.
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Both Solar and Lunar Eclipses always occur when there is a New Moon or Full Moon near the Lunar Nodes, and this occurs every six months. The nodes are where the pathway of the Moon cross the Ecliptic from our geocentric perspective here on Earth. The ecliptic is what appears to be the pathway of the Sun from this vantage point. The Nodes are always in opposite signs and usually the eclipses happen in these signs as well, but in some cases could also occur in the signs next to these ones.
Generally, eclipses signify what is changing and shifting in our lives, which could start in the six weeks prior and can also play out over the next six months following until the next series of eclipses. However, the next eclipses will continue some of these same themes which will play out in different ways. Usually the weeks near these periods is when the themes come up more strongly which could trigger certain feelings within us and can also be reflected externally through circumstances that come up.
This Eclipse In Connection To Previous Eclipse Periods
This specific eclipse is connected to the Solar Eclipse in Leo that occurred in the summer, which was also known as the ‘Great American Eclipse’. It is almost exactly opposite of where that one occurred. It is possible that some of the things going on now may bring about some sort of conclusion or further change related to what was initiated or happening at that time. Alternatively, this period can also be the ‘next step’ of what has been going on over the last six months since then. In many cases, challenges could come up as well.
This eclipse is also connected to the Solar Eclipses that occurred in early 1999 and early 2000. Some of the major themes going on during those years will be similar to what is going on now except it will be a different version of this similar energy. For example, you may have had changes in your relationships back then, which might be similar to what is occurring now, however, these relationships will be different ones with different circumstances and variables. The deeper reasons connected to our inner and personal needs could be similar to that period.
Solar Eclipse In Aquarius
With the South Node currently in Aquarius and North Node in Leo, this is a period in which we are facilitating changes and releasing things associated with Aquarius energy to help us be more in alignment with our Leo related wants and aspirations. This process will also continue over the next year.
Aquarius is associated with friends, social networks, groups, teams, colleagues, the collective, humanitarian deeds, and anything scientific or forward thinking. It is intellectual and social. On the other hand, Leo is about our heart’s desires, self expression, and our joy. It is associated with our creativity, performing arts, children, and it could even be associated with sports or in any modality that we shine in, and this could even include leadership.
This is a period to consider how our relations with others are serving our passions and how we want to shine in the word. Consider which of your friendships and connections are in alignment with the way you want to express yourself and which are not. Which of your social contacts contribute to your joy and which ones are contradiction or a conflict of interest. It is also possible that for some people there could be changes and challenges (beyond your control) that could come up in relation to your social network.
Solar Eclipse Conjunct Mercury
This eclipse is aligned with Mercury which rules the mind while the sign of Aquarius is also mentally oriented as well. When considering that Leo rules the heart, and the previous summers Solar Eclipse in Leo was also aligned with the star Regulus, known as ‘the heart of the Lion’, a theme for this period (mid 2017- late 2018) is to get out of our heads and to be in our heart more.
Our actions and pursuits should be based on what our heart is telling us, while our minds and mental processes should be working in collaboration with this. This is a common topic in the spiritual, New Age, and conscious community. However, during this time many of the challenges and circumstances coming up will be related to this, as the Universe is pushing this more strongly on us.
Mercury is also associated with communication and our thoughts. For some people, this can be a period of making changes in the way we communicate and our overall thought process which goes back to the need to be more heart centred as mentioned above. Sometimes when we are not in our hearts, the shadow of Leo energy can be expressed which is egoic. This can manifest in our communication and thoughts, however, it is possible that for some people these Mercury related shifts may not be necessarily connected to a lack of ‘heart-centredness.’
Solar Eclipse Conjunct Asteroid Juno
The observation of asteroids in astrology is not a primary thing to look at as there are thousands of them. However, there are some asteroids considered to be major ones and when I see a strong connection to one of those, I feel it is worthy of mention.
Juno is associated with unions and commitments such as marriage, but in this context it could also be related to other types of unions and commitments as well. Venus is in Pisces is in a sextile aspect with Saturn in Capricorn, which for some people can also be about commitments around love, with relationships being a strong theme that could develop over the coming months.
Juno is also associated with empowering oppressed women. Due to this being a South Node eclipse, this can also reflect any challenges that could come up around this subject.
Jealousy is also a theme connected to Juno, especially when it is somehow tied in with our unions with others. During this period, it is possible that some of the changes that have been coming up recently and during the coming months and may also be connected to these Juno themes mentioned, but not in every case.
Uranus and Chiron Also In The Mix, Jupiter Sextile Pluto
Uranus is in a sextile aspect with this eclipse (with Juno/Mercury) and was also in aspect with the summer Solar Eclipse, as well as with many of the recent and upcoming New Moons. This planet is about our uniqueness, liberation, breakthroughs, new experiences, and freedom. It is technological, futuristic, rebellious, and is also associated with metaphysics and subjects such as astrology. Some the changes reflected by this eclipse could be connected to these themes in combination with themes mentioned earlier in the article.
Chiron is making semi-sextile aspect to both Uranus and this eclipse, right at the midpoint of it all. This can be connected to healing as well as triggering wounds related to the Aquarius, Mercury, and Juno themes mentioned above. However, when we also consider that this is an easy aspect and with Uranus in the mix, this can be a great energy for overall healing and empowerment, and letting and overcoming wounds getting in the way of our authentic self expression. It can also have a positive healing influence in our friendships and social network as part of the Aquarian related changes represented by this eclipse.
Jupiter in Scorpio has been in a sextile with Pluto in the weeks leading up to eclipse season which will continue to play out until September and will be strong again next in mid-April. This combined with the Chiron-Uranus influence above can be very helpful in healing and transformations for many people, depending on how it all lines up with your natal chart. If you have been experiencing challenges throughout January and February, perhaps these energies are trying to get your attention and the need to transform aspects of your life are becoming more apparent.
Making Intentions And Things To Consider
What changes and improvements do you need to make in your relations with others? Which of your friendships are not in alignment with your true self and how you express your personal joy? Are you letting your social connections or colleagues get in the way of you shining in your light? Have you been too much in your head at the expense of your heart’s desires? What needs to change in your commitments and unions with others? What can you do to feel more liberated in expressing your own authentic expression?
These are some examples of what to reflect on at this time but not limited to them either. Keep in mind that the energy of this specific eclipse will also have an influence over the next 6 months although it may be being triggered more strongly at this time.
If you wish to do any sort of intentions for this eclipse period, it is best to do so within the 24 hours following. However, the first six hours following it will be best for reflection and tuning in to how you feel and after that period would be better for intention setting. The exact moment of the eclipse will be at 9:05pm Universal Time, you can click here to see what that is for your time zone.
Have you listened to my recent interview on the all new Collective Evolution Podcast? We spoke about astrology in general as well as some of the stuff going on in 2018 and beyond. Check it out here.
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Our Biology Responds To Events Before They Even Happen
- The Facts:
Multiple experiments have shown strong evidence for precognition in several different ways. One of them comes in the form of activity within the heart and the brain responding to events before they even happen.
- Reflect On:
Do we have extra human capacities we are unaware of? Perhaps we can learn them, develop them, and use them for good. Perhaps when the human race is ready, we will start learning more.
Is precognition real? There are many examples suggesting that yes, it is. The remote viewing program conducted by the CIA in conjunction with Stanford University was a good example of that. After its declassification in 1995, or at least partial declassification, the Department of Defense and those involved revealed an exceptionally high success rate:
To summarize, over the years, the back-and-forth criticism of protocols, refinement of methods, and successful replication of this type of remote viewing in independent laboratories has yielded considerable scientific evidence for the reality of the (remote viewing) phenomenon. Adding to the strength of these results was the discovery that a growing number of individuals could be found to demonstrate high-quality remote viewing, often to their own surprise… The development of this capability at SRI has evolved to the point where visiting CIA personnel with no previous exposure to such concepts have performed well under controlled laboratory conditions. (source)
The kicker? Part of remote viewing involves peering into future events as well as events that happened in the past.
It’s not only within the Department of Defense that we find this stuff, but a lot of science is emerging on this subject as well.
For example, a study (meta analysis) published in the journal Frontiers in Human Neuroscience titled “Predicting the unpredictable: critical analysis and practical implications of predictive anticipatory activity” examined a number of experiments regarding this phenomenon that were conducted by several different laboratories. These experiments indicate that the human body can actually detect randomly delivered stimuli that occur 1-10 seconds in advance. In other words, the human body seems to know of an event and reacts to the event before it has occurred. What occurs in the human body before these events are physiological changes that are measured regarding the cardiopulmonary, the skin, and the nervous system.
A few years ago, the chief scientist at the Institute of Noetic Sciences, Dr. Dean Radin, visited the scientists over at HearthMath Institute and shared the results of one of his studies. Radin is also one of multiple scientists who authored the paper above. These studies, as mentioned above, tracked the autonomic nervous system, physiological changes, etc.
Scientists at HeartMath Institute (HMI) added more protocols, which included measuring participants’ brain waves (EEG), their hearts’ electrical activity (ECG), and their heart rate variability (HRV).
As HMI explains:
Twenty-six adults experienced in using HeartMath techniques and who could sustain a heart-coherent state completed two rounds of study protocols approximately two weeks apart. Half of the participants completed the protocols after they intentionally achieved a heart-coherent state for 10 minutes. The other half completed the same procedures without first achieving heart coherence. Then they reversed the process for the second round of monitoring, with the first group not becoming heart-coherent before completing the protocols and the second group becoming heart-coherent before. The point was to test whether heart coherence affected the results of the experiment.
Participants were told the study’s purpose was to test stress reactions and were unaware of its actual purpose. (This practice meets institutional-review-board standards.) Each participant sat at a computer and was instructed to click a mouse when ready to begin.
The screen stayed blank for six seconds. The participant’s physiological data was recorded by a special software program, and then, one by one, a series of 45 pictures was displayed on the screen. Each picture, displayed for 3 seconds, evoked either a strong emotional reaction or a calm state. After each picture, the screen went blank for 10 seconds. Participants repeated this process for all 45 pictures, 30 of which were known to evoke a calm response and 15 a strong emotional response.
The results of the experiment were fascinating to say the least. The participants’ brains and hearts responded to information about the emotional quality of the pictures before the computer flashed them (random selection). This means that the heart and brain were both responding to future events. The results indicated that the responses happened, on average, 4.8 seconds before the computer selected the pictures.
How mind-altering is that?
Even more profound, perhaps, was data showing the heart received information before the brain. “It is first registered from the heart,” Rollin McCraty Ph.D. explained, “then up to the brain (emotional and pre-frontal cortex), where we can logically relate what we are intuiting, then finally down to the gut (or where something stirs).”
Another significant study (meta-analysis) that was published in Journal of Parapsychology by Charles Honorton and Diane C. Ferrari in 1989 examined a number of studies that were published between 1935 and 1987. The studies involved individuals’ attempts to predict “the identity of target stimuli selected randomly over intervals ranging from several hundred million seconds to one year following the individuals responses.” These authors investigated over 300 studies conducted by over 60 authors, using approximately 2 million individual trials by more than 50,000 people. (source)
It concluded that their analysis of precognition experiments “confirms the existence of a small but highly significant precognition effect. The effect appears to be repeatable; significant outcomes are reported by 40 investigators using a variety of methodological paradigms and subject populations. The precognition effect is not merely an unexplained departure from a theoretical chance baseline, but rather is an effect that covaries with factors known to influence more familiar aspects of human performance.” (source)
“There seems to be a deep concern that the whole field will be tarnished by studying a phenomenon that is tainted by its association with superstition, spiritualism and magic. Protecting against this possibility sometimes seems more important than encouraging scientific exploration or protecting academic freedom. But this may be changing.”
– Cassandra Vieten, PhD and President/CEO at the Institute of Noetic Sciences (source)
We are living in a day and age where new information and evidence are constantly emerging, challenging what we once thought was real or what we think we know about ourselves as human beings. It’s best to keep an open mind. Perhaps there are aspects of ourselves and our consciousness that have yet to be discovered. Perhaps if we learn and grow from these studies, they can help us better ourselves and others.
Studies Show That Writing In A Journal Can Benefit Your Emotional & Physical Well-Being
If you have read any of my previous articles, you may already know that I am a huge advocate of keeping a journal, or diary or notebook – whichever term you like best to describe the act of writing out your thoughts on paper, or if you prefer, typing them out on a screen.
Personally, journaling is something that has helped me get through some really tough times in my life and is also a great tool for just allowing some new perspective and a space to vent without judgment or advice. But for all of those skeptics out there who don’t understand how something like this could actually help, well, there’s science to prove it.
Scientific Evidence To Prove How Journaling Helps
Psychologists from the University of California were able to investigate the effect of journaling by inviting 20 volunteers to visit the lab for a brain scan before asking them to write for 20 minutes a day for four consecutive days. Half of the participants wrote about a fairly recent emotional experience, while the other half of the participants wrote about something neutral.
Those who chose to write about an emotional experience showed more activity in the part of the brain called the right ventrolateral prefrontal cortex. In turn, this relaxed neural activity that is linked to strong emotional feelings.
According to Lieberman, men seemed to benefit from writing about their feelings more so than women, and writing by hand seemed to have a bigger effect than typing on a keyboard. That’s an interesting note: could men benefit from journaling more because in general they tend to keep their feelings to themselves? A journal can certainly act as a safe space for emotionally deprived men to vent.
“Men tend to show greater benefits and that is a bit counterintuitive. But the reason might be that women more freely put their feelings into words, so this is less of a novel experience for them. For men it’s more of a novelty,” Lieberman said.
Aside from drastic improvements to your mood and emotional well-being, writing out your thoughts and feelings regularly can actually benefit your physical health as well. Journaling can increase your chance of fighting specific diseases like asthma, rheumatoid arthritis, AIDS and cancer. Amazingly, it can even help physical wounds heal faster.
A study conducted in 2013 found that 76% of adults who spent 20 minutes a day journaling for three days in a row before a scheduled medical biopsy were fully healed 11 days later. On the other hand, 58% of the control group had not yet recovered. The study concluded that just one hour of writing about a distressing event helped the participants to better understand the events and reduce stress levels.
Lead researcher on expressive writing at the University of Texas and author of Writing To Heal, James W. Pennebaker, has found that by translating our experiences into our own language by writing it out, we are able to make the experience more comprehendible.
Pennebaker says: “Emotional upheavals touch every part of our lives. You don’t just lose a job, you don’t just get divorced. These things affect all aspects of who we are — our financial situation, our relationships with others, our views of ourselves…writing helps us focus and organize the experience.”
The Most Efficient Way To Cope With A Big Life Change Is To Journal
Journaling will help you to get over a break-up or cope with other up and down relationships in your life. While it may seem to be overanalyzing, studies have shown that venting about a past relationship actually helps to speed up emotional recovery and can help build a stronger sense of self-identity following a break-up. I don’t know about you, but this is something that I wish I would have done after break-ups that leave you feeling lost and like you don’t know who you are anymore.
By venting I don’t mean to your friends. While this certainly can help, the act of writing, with a pen or pencil, will provide you with the most health benefits.
“Writing accesses the left hemisphere of the brain, which is analytical and rational,” Maud Purcell, a psychotherapist and journaling expert, told Fast Company. “While your left brain is occupied, your right brain is free to do what it does best, i.e. create, intuit, and feel. In this way, writing removes mental blocks and allows us to use more of our brainpower to better understand ourselves and the world around us.”
Journaling Can Provide Long-Term Benefits
Journaling helps you to cope with the experience at hand but it can also help to prepare you to face similar experiences in the future.
“Journal therapy is all about using personal material as a way of documenting an experience, and learning more about yourself in the process,” Kathleen Adams, a psychotherapist and author of Journal to the Self, told the Huffington Post. “It lets us say what’s on our minds and helps us get — and stay — healthy through listening to our inner desires and needs.”
The process of journaling allows you to get to know yourself through your feelings and experiences. It’s just plain and simply writing out your feelings. This is different than just thinking because it is more streamline; you aren’t going back and forth or writing the same thing down over and over again.
You can start right now, or the next time you’re feeling particularly stressed about something. It’s so simple you might as well give it a shot! What do you have to lose? It just might help you more than you might have imagined! Plus, wouldn’t it be fun to look back at the big events that happened in your life in 20 years or longer and see how you were able to deal with the situations? It could even provide you with some insight on how to handle situations you are faced with in the future.
We are constantly being faced with challenges. This is what life is all about, but our reactions to those challenges is what defines who we are. Are we strong and capable or are we weak and playing a victim? The choice is ours!
Loneliness: A Health Problem That Could Be Deadlier Than Obesity, Study Says
Loneliness can reliably be linked to a significant increase in the risk of early mortality, according to a study at Brigham Young University. Head author, Julianne Holt-Lunstad, notes that “substantial evidence now indicates that individuals lacking social connections (both objective and subjective social isolation) are at risk for premature mortality.”
Holt-Lunstad believes the risks associated with loneliness are already greater than such established dangers as obesity:
Several decades ago scientists who observed widespread dietary and behavior changes raised warnings about obesity and related health problems. The present obesity epidemic had been predicted. Obesity now receives constant coverage in the media and in public health policy. The current status of research on the risks of loneliness and social isolation is similar to that of research on obesity 3 decades ago… Current evidence indicates that heightened risk for mortality from a lack of social relationships is greater than that from obesity.
Furthermore, she warns that “researchers have predicted that loneliness will reach epidemic proportions by 2030 unless action is taken.”
Why Are We So Isolated From Each Other?
From the long view, it can be said that Western civilization as a whole has fostered a gradual disintegration of our physical and social ties. With an emphasis on individual goals and an almost fanatical regard for personal achievement, the traditional institutions of family and community and their capacity to provide their members with a sense of belonging and shared purpose have become significantly fragmented.
The family unit has gone from large generations-linked mutual support systems to small and immediate units, sometimes involving single parents whose necessities make it very difficult to create a stable home environment for their children. Add to that the fact that more and more people are not even building families, and our society has more people living alone than at any other time in history. This includes the elderly, who are less likely to find a ‘fit’ living within their children’s families than ever before.
The decline of the ‘community’ is perhaps as significant as the disintegration of the family unit. In Western-style communities, people work as a collection of individual units interacting by specific functions rather than as an interrelated whole with a significant shared identity. Naturally, attempts are made today to join or build ‘communities’ all the time, but like the Meetup model, they are founded on the gathering of select people with similar interests and purposes, rather than a shared embrace of all people within a certain geographical area.
The Rise of Social Media
I believe the rise in prominence of social media has in part been fuelled by the sense of alienation we have long felt within our modern society. I don’t believe social media is the root cause of our loneliness, as some speculate, but rather a symptom of this much longer-standing social problem. Connecting via chats and web pages is just something that we have gotten into the habit of reaching for since it is so immediately accessible. But like any quick fix, it does not end up fulfilling our deeper needs, either individually or as a society.
If we see that our society has been slowly disintegrating over hundreds of years, then it becomes incumbent upon us as a society (if we can still even identify ourselves with our ‘society’) to take measures to remedy this situation. What those measures might be, though, given how things seem to be trending, is a matter of great conjecture.
On Being Alone
One approach is to first acknowledge that Western society’s emphasis on the individual is not necessarily a bad thing. In fact, I believe that the development of personal integrity, creativity, and autonomy is a critical step in the evolution of human consciousness. Learning how to be alone with oneself is a part of that process. In his work entitled Pensées, French philosopher Blaise Pascal observed that “All of humanity’s problems stem from man’s inability to sit quietly in a room alone.”
As evidenced by Eastern gurus and mystics, one can be perfectly content in isolation. This can be greatly facilitated by the practice of meditation and other such methods that give us a direct perception of our energetic connectedness not only with other people, but with all things. In this higher state, the damaging emotional impact of loneliness and social isolation are not experienced.
Our Next Step
Still, the life of the yogi remains for the few. The rest of us, it seems, have come to this planet to interact, share, and love. And we have not incarnated into this dense physical world to get better at virtual relationships. At this stage, we have perhaps gotten a bit too accustomed to social isolation for our own good.
Holt-Lunstad notes that “although living alone can offer conveniences and advantages for an individual, this meta-analysis indicates that physical health is not among them.” She also cites another study that “has demonstrated higher survival rates for those who are more socially connected.” And then there is the seminal 75-Year Harvard University study, where “it was universally clear that without loving and supportive relationships, men in the study were not happy.” The message is becoming clear: we need to come together.
We are perhaps at a larger turning point in our development than most of us realize. It seems that we have reached the extreme edge of the exploration of individualism, and we are readying to move into greater balance with a collective identity. This is not a return to traditional ways, but rather a synthesis of our growth as individuals with the shared experience we are now hungering for. This synthesis signifies the next stage of our evolution.
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