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Seize The Day -- Choices  for Daily Living

-- Every act you take, every choice you make creates a system that perpetuates itself and has a life of its own -- and has a birth horoscope which paints a picture of its destiny and your part in it.  Life is a series of beginnings of countless journeys -- it’s your daily choice where and when to begin them. 

By John Townley and Susan Wishbow Townley

“Well begun is half done.”
“He started out on the right foot.”
“I got out of the wrong side of bed this morning.”
“Each day is the first day of the rest of your life.”

These common catch phrases, and many more like them, express a common belief:  that the way you begin something is critical to how it comes out in the end.  There’s a lot of truth to it, much that borders on the obvious.  If you begin something well, it’s easier to follow through and bring it to a happy conclusion -- but if you falter at the start, getting things corrected and up to speed again can be much more difficult.

That premise is at the very heart of astrology, something that is also obvious.  The natal horoscope is, after all, a picture of our very beginning, and it has within it the description of the potentials of our whole life’s journey.  By carefully perusing our birth horoscope, we can tell which foot we got off on and chart the ins and outs of the journey that leans on that critical beginning.

Electional astrology is the active version of this “beginnings” philosophy.  By choosing the right time for a marriage, a purchase, a voyage, we hope to set up the beginning in just such a way as to have everything that devolves from it work out as we would like it to.  This is a major stock-in-trade of the professional astrologer, who has been called upon to pick auspicious times for action throughout the ages.  How well he/she succeeds depends not only on how good an electional chart can be found, but whether the client really wants the result asked for.  After all, when you wish for things, beware that you just might get your wish!

Most people lose contact with that critical connection between astrology and beginnings at this point.  After all, if no big decision is to be made, why bother to check out the planets --  isn’t it just business as usual?  Wait for something important to come along before turning an eye to the sky... let the rest take care of itself.  Just show up for work on time, catch your daily train, and let the sky take care of itself, except in special circumstances...everything will be all right. Right?

Wrong!  What you do from moment to moment, is the very essence of your life, and it’s sometimes a life-and-death issue.   Timing, and the continuously newly-born life you live from moment to moment is critical to your ability to take charge of yourself, and “leading with the right foot” is not just something you do for “important” events but every time you cross the street, answer the phone, or fasten your safety belt.  Your life is begun anew each moment, and a more or less continual “eye on the sky” can tell you a lot about it and give you much more influence over it.  Here are some examples and tips, some dramatic, some humdrum, all important:

Two true personal tales from JT:

Tale #1.  When I was five years old I lived in Rancho Santa Fe, California, then a small village in a wide-open countryside, long before it became a haven for the rich and Heaven’s Gate.  Every spring there were huge swarms of bees that would migrate across the landscape, not something you wanted to tangle with.  One bright morning, I skipped out the door onto the porch, ready to launch into my day of play outside.  But, no -- stop, said my mom, come back inside, gotta put on your sweater.  Darn.  Turn around, put it on, start over, interrupted voyage.  Barely a minute or so later, as I finally went to step off the porch, a roaring, angry swarm of bees blackened the whole yard at ground level, no more than a few feet in front of me -- it took them a full minute to pass by.  I’m still alive today because of that second beginning, so slightly different from the short-lived first one of only a minute before  -- wrong foot, right foot...  It’s one of an endless series of journeys constantly begun that I am still living nearly fifty years later -- one of many more I will begin for years to come, if I choose wisely.

Tale #2.  Sometimes you may never know for sure if the foot was right or wrong -- or just a cosmic kick in the pants.  Many years ago, when I was singing at a Coconut Grove coffee house (those were the days), a weary, world-worn blues guitarist told me this one.  Ironically, and suitably, I don’t even recall his name.  He had at one time worked in a successful early country rock backup band.  Hit records were coming, life was rosey, and then on one tour stop in the Midwest, he stayed out too late after the concert, had one too many, and woke up late.  The other musicians had already left the hotel.  He threw on his clothes, grabbed his guitar, and snagged a taxi, but his rushed journey to the airport to meet the rest began (and ended) too late -- he missed the plane.  Forever.  The band was the Crickets, Buddy Holly’s backup group, and the plane crashed killing all aboard, the legendary “Day The Music Died.”  Only he escaped to tell the tale.  Wrong foot?  Right foot?  One drink over (or under) the line?  Buddy Holly is enshrined in memory,  a pop star cut down in his prime.  My acquaintance did then and does still, perhaps, live a life of melancholy obscurity and eerie reminiscence, playing obscure  blues clubs, nursing another drink. Still alive, but how alive?  Whose journey had the better start, the better end?

The moral of both these tales, however, is that neither of the heroes had a clue how critical seemingly small beginnings were to be.  Most of us are just like that, most of the time.  But we don’t have to be.  At least not entirely.  And astrology can give us a handle on taking charge of our beginnings with some very easy rules and just a little, general planning.

Most of it has to do with watching where the Sun, Moon, and planets are and instead of letting them “affect” you, instead take charge and “use” them.  Incorporate them into your daily beginnings.  If you see the Moon is in Aries, realize that everything you begin that day, everything you do, has a “birth” chart with Moon in Aries in it.  When you answer the phone, answer briskly, get in the first word, react quickly, use that energy to be a boost, a jumpstart on all the activities of the day.  Aries stuff.  It’s going to be there all day, anyway, so know it, and use it.  Similarly, if the Moon is in Cancer, don’t recoil or retreat, do things to enfold and nurture people.  Start things that help others and feed the emotionally or physically hungry. That’s part of your script for the day, so write some appropriate lines to fit it.  And so on, throughout the signs.  That also goes for where the Sun is, Mars is, and so on.  Find out what’s going on, and behave like you’re a part of it, adding to and drawing on the currently happening energy at the same time.

The trick is to imagine that each time you do something, however small, you are giving birth to an “event-baby.”  Like meeting a new acquaintance, making a new contact, answering the phone, making a purchase, just saying good morning to someone.  That event may seem small, but its consequences will bear the hallmark of its moment of birth from that time on.  Once you have set something in motion, it then grows and develops on its own, like a child does.  From a single “chance” meeting, a lifelong friendship is born, grows, matures, has a life of its own.  And the process of the birth of these events is all your own doing, your own choice.  If you know that, say, the Sun is in Leo, the Moon is in Scorpio, and Mars is in Gemini, visualize where they are in the sky at different times of day, and act accordingly -- with grand enthusiasm (Leo), mixed with cautionary reaction(Scorpio), but active communication (Mars/Gemini).  Then you will be wide awake and an active participant in the event -- “natural” childbirth at its best!  And remember, when you deal with the evolution of that day’s events yea rs later, they will still be behaving like Sun in Leo, Moon in Scorpio, and Mars in Gemini!

The time of day is important, even if you’re only thinking Sun-sign.  Early morning cup of coffee, power breakfast, daybreak dawning, Sun is in the First House!  En route to work, it’s in the 12th, read a book, listen to the car radio, don’t get annoyed! The two hours before noon, it’s in the 10th House, time to do career things (it’s when everyone does, not accidentally).  Sunset is the ultimate 7th house partnership time, no wonder it’s so romantic...and after dinner in the 6th house is taken care of, it’s party time in the 5th, or at least prime time TV...and so on.   Life is a continual set of electional charts, happening one after the other, so get on board and make them happen with your eyes open -- otherwise they will happen anyway, but to you, not for you, and without your knowledge or control, instead of with your full input and participation.

How far do these little birth-events extend?  How long do they last?  Sometimes they seem to vanish without a trace.  Sometimes they wind on forever, submerging, resurfacing, evolving and involving.  For instance, the events in Tale #2, born in the 1950’s, has now forever pulled you into its family, just by your reading this story and taking it to heart...

 This kind of thinking could get very complex!  We could go around with a  skymap in our heads, noting when Mars rises and taking action then, waiting for Jupiter to culminate for a career move, and the like.  Some astrologers do just that.  There are personal computer programs available that keep constant track of the sky all day long and make a different alarm signal for each planet as it rises or culminates to let everybody in the vicinity know what’s happening.  And it really works -- Mercury culminates, the phone rings, Mars rises, someone starts an argument, you name it, it happens on time with startling consistency.  When you know what’s in the air, you can move to cooperate with it, take charge of it, recognize the future each moment represents.  The dedicated astrologer keeps track of these things...

But that could drive you nuts, and you can’t carry a computer around with you all the time, even if you could interpret everything it said.  You can, however, keep a general eye on things and then ride your intuition.  And use some common rules that apply generally to beginnings, very like those illustrated in tales #1 & 2. 

1) For instance, when you feel like you’re getting off on the wrong foot, don’t just let it go on apace and then have to pick up the pieces as it goes from bad to worse later.  Stop.  Dead halt, go back.  Start over again, take if from the top, this time the way you really mean to.  This causes you to have a new beginning(with a new birth chart) and a surer follow-through.  That’s similar to tale #1. 

2) Or, when you see you really can’t make a successful follow-through after you have already begun something, don’t just keep on keeping on, abandon it entirely.  Start something else, don’t throw good effort after bad.  That’s similar to tale #2.

3) Love your event-babies equally, as you would (or should) your children.  The smallest event may burgeon into a world of wealth or a wealth of nightmares, depending on how you nurture or neglect it.  So treat every event with the respect you would give an angel in disguise.  The least likely ones often are. 

4) Keep records.  Diaries, journals, receipts, phone and computer logs all let you look back later and see how and when the really nice (and the really nasty) event-babies were born and, once you know they’re important, how they’ll develop in the future.

5) Keep track of your event-baby family tree.   Your natal horoscope, for comparison, covers your whole life, but you also look at the charts of your marriages, your children, their marriages, etc., all sub-plots of your own life where you exercise decision and control.  Similarly, your event-babies have their own lives and their own sub-plots, dividing, spreading, reproducing.  Even when they get out of hand, there are certain points where you can have most influence over them.  For instance, on an ill-begun vacation trip that’s maybe getting out of control --  once you’ve left home you can’t start the whole thing over, but each new day’s start, even each time you stop for lunch or gas, puts a new spin on it, a new sub-beginning, a few of which used judiciously can get you back on track. 

But above all be aware that everything you do has consequences, each event you participate in has its own inertia and it’s own life and you are its creator, so be aware of it and take charge of it, knowing it’s going to accompany you (or dog you, depending) for its natural lifetime.  How many times have you looked back and said to yourself, about an important relationship or business deal, “Wow, it was that phone call that Friday that started the WHOLE THING!”  So where was the Moon “that Friday?”   Wished you’d hadda known, dontcha?...

More especially, it gives us a better sense of the uniqueness and overall consciousness that is imbedded in our surroundings.  It helps us realize that the very details of our lives are, in fact, lives unto themselves which experience birth, growth, and death as we do and respond and develop in similar ways to transits and progressions as do all information systems, of which we are but one type of many in the world around us.  Like other living creatures, some will have short lives and come to naught.  Others, often the ones we least expect, will blossom into the circumstantial engines that power us to success or betray us in to ruin.  Like children, the more “quality time” we give them while in infancy, the more likely they will be to support us in old age!

Which leads us to one further observation.  If you keep track of your “event-babies” you will find, as most astrologers do, that they are intimately linked to your own birth chart, as closely as any natural children are, and that by simply being alive, you are both creating and sharing the teeming waters of life that surround us all, in forms we are often totally unaware of.  So be in active contact with them, love them, nurture them, (indeed sometimes discipline them!), and under no circumstances neglect them lest they turn on you.  If you ever had any doubt that you are in constant company and attendance by what you create and what has created you, this should certainly set your mind (and soul) at rest.

So What’s It All Mean?

It’s a pretty simple and practical philosophy, this astrology of beginnings.  Each moment really is, after all, the birth of the rest of your life, so be a good midwife. It’s implications, however, both for astrology and everyday reality, are quite profound.  It makes you look at transits, for instance, not as something that’s happening “up there” doing something to us “down here,”  but as a set of circumstances that describe what we are actually doing ourselves right here and now.  We are the motivators, the starters, the characters that write the ins and outs of the possible plots we are being presented with.  The better we know the potential script and where it might lead, the more likely we’ll be able to turn it into a drama or at least a comedy, and avoid finding ourselves cornered into a tragedy because we didn’t watch our lines.

Which leads us to one further observation.  If you keep track of your “event-babies” you will find, as most astrologers do, that they are intimately linked to your own birth chart, as closely as any natural children are, and that by simply being alive, you are both creating and sharing the teeming waters of life that surround us all, in forms we are often totally unaware of.  So be in active contact with them, love them, nurture them, (indeed sometimes discipline them!), and under no circumstances neglect them lest they turn on you.  If you ever had any doubt that you are in constant company and attendance by what you create and what has created you, this should certainly set your mind (and soul) at rest.

Practical Postscript for Postpartum Care and Feeding of Event-babies.

As with real children, awareness is your key factor in knowing what to do to nurture your daily event-children.  Awareness when they happen, awareness after the fact.  Each evening, take a little time to reflect over the day’s events and consider their importance.  How did you handle that unusual phone call, does it need follow-up, correction, does it have a future?  What event-lines are cooking that could use extra attention, are at a turning point where you could influence them, get them back on track?  If you didn’t do it while it was happening, note down events of the day that caught your attention and what time they happened.  Speculate on where they might lead. 

Finish with jotting down where the planets, Sun, and Moon were that day.  What kind of play do you think that describes?  Did you act accordingly, go with the rhythm, or ignore it, do something else while your babies were coming to life?  And, finally, what’s happening tomorrow and what will your script be?  What time do you wake up and start things going in the morning?  That’s the birth of your whole day and everything else that happens branches off of that...which, by the way, is why most people do best during the time of year the Sun is passing through their Ascendant sign --it’s when the daily get-going chart shares their Ascendant...

Those are just a few hints for early post-natal care of the countless blessed (and not-so-blessed) events you engender every day.  Aftercare is essential, but most important is family planning and instantaneous awareness of just what you’re giving birth to as you do it.  The more you view events as living things unto themselves, the more respect you’ll have for them and their repercussions -- the more you’ll notice them, and the more they’ll notice and respect you and your part in them. Living in the here and now is literally, physically the best way to assure that you reap rewards later from what will be, by then, your “grandchildren!”

-- Originally published in Dell Horoscope Magazine, April 1998

Cycles of the Moon & Sun

From Lunar Returns — Meet The Moon

Seize The Day

Of Time And Tides

 Paul Kammerer: The Law Of Seriality (fr. Fortean Studies - .pdf)

 Professor Seward's Foray From The Beyond

Toward a Physical Basis for Astrology

 Heavenly Vacations

Your Birthday Headlines

America Quo Vadis

  Copyright © John Townley 2005. All rights reserved.
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