Since winter break started I have gotten one of my courses online and have printed out the music scores we'll be studying. The other course is done almost up to midterm. I need to get back to that today. When my courses are under control I can begin to sort through the tracks I recorded back in September and choose which ones to use for editing. The producer and I are going to try remote editing, but it may be necessary to take a trip to Atlanta to complete the project.
As seems to be my habit, once I clear my head of pressing academic responsibilities, I have spent a little bit of time studying astrology this break. After discovering Jade Sol Luna's work, which purports to be a revival of an ancient western sidereal approach, I found the Lunar Planner website, which represents a modern sidereal approach. Its theoretical basis--or at least its solution to the problem of how to measure the precession of the equinoxes--derives from the work of a man who is co-founder of a contemporary Sophia sect. That man's work looks mildly interesting. I also found a correspondence course by the man who is probably the premier western sidereal astrologer at this time, and a forum that is administered by another prominent western sidereal astrologer, who is also a well-known author and teacher of Thelema. The latter also works in IT and has a very nicely designed website for his school of Thelema. I was looking at his free e-book on Tarot yesterday, since learning more about the Thoth Tarot has been on my "to do" list for a couple of years now. His work may provide a way to move that project along a little more easily than some of the materials that I have gathered already (which have been sitting on the shelf).
I'm not sure how much reading or study I will ultimately do in western sidereal, but it's nice to know that there are some alternatives available in case I want to pursue that further. One of the things that began to emerge as I researched western sidereal a bit was the particular role that solar and lunar returns play in their work. This led to my investigating these techniques in the context of western tropical a little more, and I began to read an electronic version of Brady's book on prediction. The little bit that I read sparked some insights that were uncommonly productive for modern western tropical astrology (which tends toward mushy New Age interpretations that yield few, if any, useful insights). A picture that began to emerge about my life over the last 9 years is that there have indeed been challenges involving the assumption of greater prominence and and greater responsibility professionally, and these have been tied with a rather fateful call to return closer to home in order to attend to the final years of female family members. I had previously associated the stationing Uranus transit to my native Jupiter with meeting former friend X, but Brady is the first astrologer I have read who has pointed out that the sense of lightning and expansion that can occur under such a transit may well be exciting but rarely leads to substantive long-term changes. Exactly: I'm still in the same job, in the same house, with the same partner, and I have not run off to India to live in the ashram. Yes, Jupiter is huge, but it is also a lot of "hot air," which is probably why there is often a sense of deflation and disillusionment following a Jupiterian expansion. Yes, it was appropriate that certain longstanding issues would surface at that time, but the idea of grounding those experiences in any kind of new life situation, or in a set of long-term friendships that could be added on to the ones that were already developing naturally, was something that was just not in the cards. In short, these insights helped me to bring a bit more closure and a bit more healing to a sometimes exciting, but often painful and disillusioning, phase of my life.
Because one of the books of C. E. O. Carter is required reading for the correspondence course in sidereal astrology, I decided to order that book and also to review Carter's Principles. It seems that what I'm doing is trying to review and consolidate what I've learned so far about western tropical (both modern and classical) and Vedic approaches, and then decide where to go from there.
OK, well, time to get back to work.
Om Kreem Kalyai Namaha,