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November 10th to November 15th 2003
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MONDAY November 10
Total Lunar Eclipse Comment
The moon, just before the total eclipse. (We did take a picture a few minutes later but I didn't think you would want to see a photo of a completely dark sky!)
Here, once again, is a grainy picture of the back of my head.
Last time I showed you one of those, I had been watching a solar eclipse in North West Scotland. This though, is the eclipse of the Moon that took place above Britain, around 1.30am yesterday morning. And this is me watching it. From... er... India!
I knew in advance that the cloud cover would be pretty thick on Saturday night. I'd love to tell you that this was because my horoscope charts had foretold as much. But actually, it was because I had been checking the weather forecast! Yet I dearly wanted to see it. I find that, if you really want to know what a big celestial alignment is saying, you need to gaze at it with your own eyes. And celestial alignments don't get much bigger than this. The eclipse was due to form the trigger point of what hippies and new agers across the planet have been calling a Harmonic Concordance.
Six celestial bodies, aligned in the shape of a perfect hexagon. Some had been saying that it might open a portal to a fifth dimension of higher consciousness. Others claimed it would herald a new era of healing and hope. Then last week, I came across an even more startling claim by a lady called Mrs Veena Minocha, writing on the website of the Hindustan Times. She insisted that during this alignment, 'Every man, woman and child will be treated to a rare glimpse of their own Divinity.'
Now I have been an astrologer for several decades. And a hippy for even longer. But I have never heard anyone make quite such a bold prophecy about a single night of astrological activity. So when I started thinking about travelling abroad, I kept wondering whether this lady was for real.. and if so, what other outrageous things might she have to say for herself? Then, I worked out that on the Indian subcontinent I could see the eclipse of the Moon going down in the West at the exact same moment as the Sun rose up in the East. And then, I remembered that I had a load of unused air miles. That did it! As you can see from the picture, I went... and got a glorious view. What you probably cant see quite so clearly, is what kind of an experience I had.
So did I get a 'glimpse into my own divinity?' Did I commune with light beings, descending from the fifth dimension to bring much needed enlightenment to the human race? Did I get a cosmic insight into the near future for Tony Blair, George Bush, Iraq, Australia and India? Did I manage to track down the mysterious Mrs Veena Minocha? And was I treated to a technicolour psychedelic vision of Arsenal winning the European Champion's League?
I shall reveal all when I get back to England. Which, assuming my auto-rickshaw makes it safely to the airport... should be tomorrow!
TUESDAY November 11
What I saw in the Dark of the Moon...
The funny thing about watching a total lunar eclipse is that it involves looking very hard... at nothing. That, I suppose, is what makes it such a mystical activity. Who needs a crystal ball or a bunch of tea leaves when you can gaze at a breathtaking vanishing act in the night sky? We may be sophisticated and civilised. We may pride ourselves on knowing the difference between an optical illusion and a piece of 'real magic'. But we still don't know which category an eclipse belongs to. This is a trick that becomes MORE awe-inspiring once you know how it is done. To watch it is to be mesmerised. Hypnotised. Transported into a state of trance. As I stood on an Indian Terrace at dawn on Sunday, I knew that people in the peace movement, from California to Tokyo were seeing this event as a heavenly herald, ushering in a new era of light and understanding. New Age visionaries from Byron Bay to Glastonbury were chanting, praying or performing silent rituals to honour the moment of Harmonic Concordance. But I had to form my own conclusion. And to be properly objective, I had to watch it alone. After all, while an eclipse may well be a dramatic, shamanic symbol of birth, death and renewal, it can also be an inauspicious omen. Having stared at the sky for some while, I decided that if 'light beings from the fifth dimension' really were using this as a distraction, under which they could descend to Earth unnoticed, it was working. I certainly couldn't see them! Nor was I at all conscious of being given 'a glimpse of my own divinity'. But there definitely was a moment, during that sudden dark of the moon, when I saw the future of several famous figures. I saw Tony Blair, standing down from the leadership of the Labour Party by the middle of 2004. I saw George Bush, failing to win a second term in office. I saw Saddam Hussein and Osama Bin Laden continuing to inspire more chaos in Iraq, Saudi Arabia and Israel. I saw more of the same old conflict that has plagued our planet for endless sorry centuries.
And then, finally, I began to see something new. The slow emergence of a very different spirit in the hearts and minds of humans, all over this world. A spirit of trust. Of understanding. Of forgiveness. And of respect. Accompanied by a willingness to move forward together in harmony, regardless of the prejudices and passions that have traditionally kept us all in conflict. This weekend, I now feel sure, the Moon went through a cosmic cleansing process. It disappeared into darkness and then re-emerged full of fresh hope.
TOMORROW: How the Harmonic Concordance will eventually affect you personally.... and what it may yet do for your sex life!
WEDNESDAY November 12
More secrets from the Eclipse...
'Most people believe that sexual encounters during an eclipse will end in disaster.' So observes Dr Sanjay Chugh, a Delhi psychiatrist who adds sagely, 'This is all in the mind'. Meanwhile, in Tahiti, minds work differently. There, the Sun and Moon are seen as making love. Locals feel it is only appropriate to show respect by following their example. And the Times of India points out that eclipses like lovers, occur in pairs. Astrologers across the world broadly agree that between now and the next eclipse, on November 23, it is a good time to pursue a hidden passion or reveal a secret desire.
While I was in India, I managed to track down the mysterious Mrs Veena Minocha. She, you may recall, announced that the Harmonic Concordance would herald, 'The greatest shift of consciousness ever'. When we met up, I discovered she is not just an astrologer but a 'healer and a light worker'. The waiter then interrupted us to ask if we wanted Darjeeling or Jasmine tea. Spookily, we both replied with one voice 'Do you have Earl Grey?' And he did! (Earl Grey tea is rare in India). She then told me she had been engaged in deep meditation during the eclipse. She now felt sure that everyone with 'unresolved issues' would soon get the chance to have them properly sorted out. I asked if she still expected us all to get a 'glimpse of our own divinity.' 'Remember,' she said, 'the period of concordance lasts until the Solar Eclipse on November 23. Many people will have a revelation, by then or soon after.'
Many people have asked how I can be so sure of the big prediction I made yesterday. The answer is, I can't be. The moment any astrologer is ever totally sure of any prediction, they are in trouble. The cosmos loves nothing more than to deflate those who think they understand it. But for the record, Tony Blair was born when the Sun was at 16 degrees of Taurus. Sunday's eclipse was at 16 Taurus too. So for the next few months, his chart will not just be 'red hot', but 'smoking'. Many Taureans, especially those born on or around May 6, are going through an intense time now. Though the eclipse is auspicious, it speaks of a pressing need to let go of old ambitions and embrace new ones. George Clooney is another May 6 Taurean whose values and priorities may be about to alter significantly.
My colleague, Kathryn Cassidy, points out that the Channel Tunnel was opened on May 6. Could there soon be a dramatic news story about our big connection to Europe?
THURSDAY November 13
Unexplained Powers - Being Stared At by Rupert Sheldrake
While John Michell has a brief break from this page, another living legend will be taking his place. Biologist Rupert Sheldrake is world renowned for exploring the hidden powers that so many of us don't even realise we have been born blessed with.
The Sense of Being Stared At by Rupert Sheldrake
In the Second World War, RAF fighter pilots were advised not to stare at an enemy pilot when preparing to shoot him down. The intensity of gaze had been known to make the pilots look straight round at their attackers.
When she was about eight years old, Emma Clarke was walking homewards across an isolated field. For no apparent reason, she stopped and looked behind, and fear struck. "I saw a man towards the other end of the field looking at me. He dodged behind a tree. I ran the rest of the way home."
The sense of being stared at is particularly memorable in frightening situations like these, but common in everyday life. Most people have experienced it. Surveys in Britain and in the United States show that over 90 percent say they had sensed they were being looked at from behind. Also, most people have found that when they stare at someone from behind, that person may turn around.
I have carried out thousands of experimental tests to see if the sense of being stared at really exists, and the results show that it does. You can do a test for yourself on my website, www.sheldrake.org.
The sense of being stared at even works through binoculars and telescopes. Some of Britain's leading celebrity photographers are convinced that some people can sense their looks even when they are hidden, and looking through a telescopic lens from half a mile away. Apparently Princess Diana was especially sensitive.
I am now doing research on whether animals can feel when they are being looked at. Some hunters are convinced they can, and so are many wildlife photographers. Some people say they can wake up their sleeping dog or cat just by staring at it.
Perhaps the origins of this ability lie far back in our evolutionary ancestry. If an animal could tell when a hidden predator was looking at it, this could help it to escape.
FRIDAY November 14
New hope takes flight - Lunar eclipse emails
Last weekend, as the earth's shadow passed in front of the Moon, my children were truly awed, which says something in this world of video wizardry. Oddly, though, not one other person on our street came out to view it. Then, out of nowhere, an owl swooped over our heads. We could see its snow white feathers reflecting the growing moonlight. For a moment there was nothing but darkness, silence and the flash of white. I do hope the eclipse is a harbinger of wisdom, like that owl... Debbie
I sat on my porch, watching in awe as the Moon went first, red, then a deep indigo blue. The sky around was lit up in the same colour. It even seemed to blanket the ground below. I have never witnessed anything like it! I know this may sound corny but I imagined how the three Magi must have felt when they studied the sky and discovered the coming of the prophet... Triza
It was a clear cold night when ran outside to catch a glimpse of the eclipse. First I saw a beautiful golden shooting star near Saturn, my ruling planet. Then another shooting star near Jupiter. Finally one more just below the eclipsing moon, as if to underline it. All at once I felt tremendously tiny within the vastness. Yet it also seemed as if my existence was just as important to the universe as any other source of life force. I felt I was passing through a portal that diminished my normal 'self' and let me tap into something much more eternal. Colleen
Dear Colleen, Triza, Debbie and the many other readers who sent me their stories of the eclipse. Thank you so much.
Tomorrow in the weekly section, we'll look more closely at what the Harmonic Concordance may be about to bring as we move towards November's NEXT eclipse.
SATURDAY November 15
Don't Think Twice - Dylan, Bush, Blair comment
This week's cosmic calendar has an interesting entry for Tuesday. Venus is forming a conjunction to Pluto, heralding a week when hidden secrets come to light. Thursday's entry, meanwhile, shows Jupiter opposing Mars. It signifies the ability to summon up special strength in the battle against wrongs that need righting. If you are now fighting a personal battle against injustice expect to make progress soon. Likewise if there's some old, outstanding issue that needs to be properly sorted out. Even if you feel too jaded to take care of unfinished business, you may soon change your mind. Last weekend, there was an eclipse of the Moon. Next weekend, there will be a Solar eclipse. Eclipses always occur in pairs, two weeks apart. Mystics believe that in period between them, a 'quickening' takes place. Opportunities arise. Truths emerge. Processes that had been taking years, even decades suddenly speed up. Which brings us neatly to a man who 40 years ago, began a quest to make this world a better placer. Fittingly for someone born under the communication sign of Gemini, Bob Dylan's songs became the anthem for a whole generation. Or at least, of those within it who genuinely cared about replacing selfishness with compassion. Dylan is coming to Britain this week. Few though, expect him to act as a rallying point for the peace movement. His mission, these days, seems to involve simply selling CDs. But we live in hope. Especially as, by a simple twist of fate, the notorious warmonger is coming to Britain later this week. Cancerians have 'big issues' about their parents. George Bush clearly is no exception. Banking on his own countrymen's inability to tell one foreigner from another, he played the propaganda game and took the chance to finish a family feud, handily proving himself stronger than his father along the way. Supporting him in this regrettable campaign was a younger man who once was as idealistic as Bob Dylan. What happened to Tony Blair's integrity? Did it get destroyed by a non-existent weapon of mass destruction? Or will this week's wave of protests finally teach our Prime Minister what his fellow Taureans learned long ago. Just because you were born under the sign of the bull... you don't have to go around talking it.
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