Lunar Eclipse in Capricorn

 

Here comes the month’s second eclipse – a lunar eclipse in Capricorn. This one may be rough. Not only is Mercury retrograde, but Pluto is conjunct this eclipse, which could result in power struggles. Saturn is widely conjunct the eclipse degree, so the power struggles could be with someone who has authority over you – a boss, employer, parent.

Uranus, the planet that represents sudden, unexpected events that can be jarring, forms a challenging angle to Mercury and to Mars. There could be problems with a contractual agreement, communication project, or with travel plans. You won’t be thinking as clearly as you usually do. Tempers may be short, particularly on the road, so be vigilant for careless drivers and stick to the speed limit.

Full moons often live up to their lore – ask anyone who has worked in an emergency room about the crazies who appear on full moon days – and since the moon will be eclipsed, that craziness factor may be multiplied. Best to lay low on July 16, mind your own business, and avoid confrontations. Remember: this too shall pass.

Check out the July forecast in the masthead for a description of this eclipse’s impact on your sign.

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Indiana Jones and the Space Between

“The space between…is the space that lies between the observer and the observed; it is the space of the creative act that brings a poem or painting to life.” – F. David Peat, Pathways of Chance

In The Seven Secrets of Synchronicity, we designated Secret 4 as The Creative. We could’ve called it ‘imagination,’ which is the essence of creativity. But imagination is a somewhat vague term with a variety of meanings. Imagination can be defined as a phantasm or an irrational notion. Ie. It’s your imagination. So we stuck with The Creative.

Recently, I came across a great example, or actually a series of examples, of how creativity generates synchronicities that serve as guidance on the creative path. But it’s also an example of how imagination might actually start out as an irrational notion. In this case, what might’ve seemed a phantasm came full circle to fruition as a creative accomplishment.

These synchros were described by Dale Dassel, a frequent visitor to the blog and an ardent fan of all that is related to the Indiana Jones saga. Ten years ago, at a time when Dale was captivated by an Indiana Jones computer game called, The Fate of Atlantis, he was struck by inspiration as he drove one day on his morning commute. The first line of a novel, adapted from the computer game story, flashed into his mind.

Indiana Jones crawled through the narrow tunnel, aiming a thick electric flashlight into the darkness.

Dale jotted it down on a piece of paper and stuffed it in his pocket. Great idea, he thought, then realized that he would have to write the entire novel. It was a long game and he thought it would take forever, especially since he’s a perfectionist. For many people, that would be the end of it. After all, it would be a fan novel, one that would be offered free on the internet at fan sites. It would take a long time to complete, and there would be no financial benefits. Yet Dale pursued the inspired notion.

“…as I drove down the street, the scene continued to play like a movie inside my head. I could see Indy clambering through that dusty passage leading to God-knows-where, and the words escalated into a torrent that literally would not stop. I had to pull over and commit them to paper before I forgot anything. I’d been writing since I was a kid, but never before had I experienced such an overwhelming flood of excitement for a story. Creatively, my mind was on fire. By that afternoon, I was practically bursting with zeal to leave work and start writing in earnest.”

When he arrived home, he was eager to begin writing. He stepped inside and was astonished to see the word ATLANTIS on the TV screen. It was a commercial for the Atlantis resort in the Bahamas! “It was a sign from the universe, confirming that I was meant to write the Fate of Atlantis novel!”

A month later, he was driving his car, en route to Home Depot, and obsessing with details of a particular scene that takes place on the island of Crete. He entered the parking lot of Home Depot, passed a series of wooden sheds, turned a corner, and there was a semi truck occupying the space where he usually parked. To his astonishment, the word CRETE was displayed in bold red letters across the side of the truck. Another synchro, another sign that he should continue his creative pursuit.

A few weeks later, he decided to see if he could get a vanity license plate with the word ATLANTIS to commemorate his all-time favorite game and his new passion, the novel. He requested ATLNTIS or ATLNTS. Both were already taken. The clerk told him to try again later and so he returned on his birthday and requested: ATLANTS. Once again, taken.

A few months later, he was behind the wheel again when he pulled up behind the minivan at the traffic light and was astonished to see that its plate read: ATLNTIS. “I was floored. What are the odds that, in the *entire* state, I see the exact vanity tag that I tried in vain to secure? How about the odds that the person driving that vehicle lived in my city? Positively astronomical. It was yet another friendly nudge from the cosmos, assuring me that I was on the right path.”

Dale full story about the magic related to his creative endeavor can be found here at deviantart.com. He goes on tell more synchronicities related to the actress Julianne Moore, who he envisioned as the model for his character named Sophia.

Dale posted his Fate of Atlantis novelization online in June 2013, four years after he was struck with that flash of inspiration.

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Kryptos Unsolved

This sculpture, called Kryptos, is located in the courtyard outside the entrance to the CIA’s New Headquarters Building in Langley, Virginia. It was created by artist Jim Sanborn in 1990. The main piece consists of four curving metal panels with eighteen hundred cutout letters and three question marks that contained four hidden messages.

The world’s top cryptologists went to work on the script, but it took years before the first three messages were deciphered. Below you can see the Kryptos transcript and try to imagine how someone would go about finding hidden messages.  But finally cryptologists at the NSA broke the codes.

You can look here to see how they did it. The first two messages are said to be straight-forward and supposedly can be solved by anyone with a a basic education in cryptology. The third one is more advanced. The explanation of how it was solved to me is mind-boggling. Frankly, I don’t know what they’re talking about. The fourth message is said to be near impossible to solve. To make matters more confusing, there are three words intentionally misspelled in the first three messages and one necessary letter was missing completely from the sculpture so it would remain aesthetically balanced.

Initially, the NSA geeks refused to reveal what the messages said. But eventually the first three messages were revealed. The first is a poetic line written by the sculptor. It reads: “Between subtle shading and the absence of light lies the nuance of iqlusion.”

We could call that the Space Between. The second message is quite cryptic and who knows what phenomenon it could be about.

“It was totally invisible Hows that possible? They used the Earths magnetic field X
The information was gathered and transmitted undergruund to an unknown location X
Does Langley know about this? They should Its buried out there somewhere X
Who knows the exact location? Only WW This was his last message X
Thirty eight degrees fifty seven minutes six point five seconds north
Seventy seven degrees eight minutes forty four seconds west ID by rows”

The third one is a quote from archaeologist Howard Carter as he describes entering King Tut’s tomb. With a misspelling.

“Slowly, desparatly slowly, the remains of passage debris that encumbered the lower
Part of the doorway was removed. With trembling hands i made a tiny breach in the upper
Lefthand corner and then widening the hole a little i inserted the candle and peered
in. The hot air escaping from the chamber caused the flame to flicker but presently
Details of the room within emerged from the mist x can you see anything q?

Interestingly, the fourth and final message in the puzzle sculpture, which consists of the  97 remaining letters, has yet to be deciphered.  But a few years ago, Sanborn began to wonder if he would die before anyone figured it out. So he provided a clue: BERLIN

Considering that Sanborn was busy working on the sculpture in 1989, the year that the Berlin Wall fell many  at CIA and NSA—as well as amateur cryptologists—went to work on the puzzle with renewed interest. It was a matter of pride for the CIA since  NSA cryptologists had solved the first three.

However, no one came up with a solution, so in 2014,  Sanborn offered another clue, CLOCK. That twist left the Berlin Wall resolution in shambles. But there is a cryptic clock in Berlin, the Mengenlehreuhr—German for Set-Theory Clock. It’s the first public clock in the world that has no numbers or hands and tells the time by means of illuminated, colored beams of light. So possibly the arrangement of lights in that mysterious clock might have something to do with the arrangement of letters in the message. So far no one has figured it out, and there have been new clues for the past five years.

A mysterious postscript: Sanborn has revealed that the sculpture contains a riddle within a riddle, which will be solvable only after the four encrypted passages have been deciphered.

Kryptos Transcript

EMUFPHZLRFAXYUSDJKZLDKRNSHGNFIVJ
YQTQUXQBQVYUVLLTREVJYQTMKYRDMFD
VFPJUDEEHZWETZYVGWHKKQETGFQJNCE
GGWHKK?DQMCPFQZDQMMIAGPFXHQRLG
TIMVMZJANQLVKQEDAGDVFRPJUNGEUNA
QZGZLECGYUXUEENJTBJLBQCRTBJDFHRR
YIZETKZEMVDUFKSJHKFWHKUWQLSZFTI
HHDDDUVH?DWKBFUFPWNTDFIYCUQZERE
EVLDKFEZMOQQJLTTUGSYQPFEUNLAVIDX
FLGGTEZ?FKZBSFDQVGOGIPUFXHHDRKF
FHQNTGPUAECNUVPDJMQCLQUMUNEDFQ
ELZZVRRGKFFVOEEXBDMVPNFQXEZLGRE
DNQFMPNZGLFLPMRJQYALMGNUVPDXVKP
DQUMEBEDMHDAFMJGZNUPLGEWJLLAETG
 ABCDEFGHIJKLMNOPQRSTUVWXYZABCD
AKRYPTOSABCDEFGHIJLMNQUVWXZKRYP
BRYPTOSABCDEFGHIJLMNQUVWXZKRYPT
CYPTOSABCDEFGHIJLMNQUVWXZKRYPTO
DPTOSABCDEFGHIJLMNQUVWXZKRYPTOS
ETOSABCDEFGHIJLMNQUVWXZKRYPTOSA
FOSABCDEFGHIJLMNQUVWXZKRYPTOSAB
GSABCDEFGHIJLMNQUVWXZKRYPTOSABC
HABCDEFGHIJLMNQUVWXZKRYPTOSABCD
IBCDEFGHIJLMNQUVWXZKRYPTOSABCDE
JCDEFGHIJLMNQUVWXZKRYPTOSABCDEF
KDEFGHIJLMNQUVWXZKRYPTOSABCDEFG
LEFGHIJLMNQUVWXZKRYPTOSABCDEFGH
MFGHIJLMNQUVWXZKRYPTOSABCDEFGHI

ENDYAHROHNLSRHEOCPTEOIBIDYSHNAIA
CHTNREYULDSLLSLLNOHSNOSMRWXMNE
TPRNGATIHNRARPESLNNELEBLPIIACAE
WMTWNDITEENRAHCTENEUDRETNHAEOE
TFOLSEDTIWENHAEIOYTEYQHEENCTAYCR
EIFTBRSPAMHHEWENATAMATEGYEERLB
TEEFOASFIOTUETUAEOTOARMAEERTNRTI
BSEDDNIAAHTTMSTEWPIEROAGRIEWFEB
AECTDDHILCEIHSITEGOEAOSDDRYDLORIT
RKLMLEHAGTDHARDPNEOHMGFMFEUHE
ECDMRIPFEIMEHNLSSTTRTVDOHW?OBKR
UOXOGHULBSOLIFBBWFLRVQQPRNGKSSO
TWTQSJQSSEKZZWATJKLUDIAWINFBNYP
VTTMZFPKWGDKZXTJCDIGKUHUAUEKCA

RNGHIJLMNQUVWXZKRYPTOSABCDEFGHIJL
OHIJLMNQUVWXZKRYPTOSABCDEFGHIJL
PIJLMNQUVWXZKRYPTOSABCDEFGHIJLM
QJLMNQUVWXZKRYPTOSABCDEFGHIJLMN
RLMNQUVWXZKRYPTOSABCDEFGHIJLMNQ
SMNQUVWXZKRYPTOSABCDEFGHIJLMNQU
TNQUVWXZKRYPTOSABCDEFGHIJLMNQUV
UQUVWXZKRYPTOSABCDEFGHIJLMNQUVW
VUVWXZKRYPTOSABCDEFGHIJLMNQUVWX
WVWXZKRYPTOSABCDEFGHIJLMNQUVWXZ
XWXZKRYPTOSABCDEFGHIJLMNQUVWXZK
YXZKRYPTOSABCDEFGHIJLMNQUVWXZKR
ZZKRYPTOSABCDEFGHIJLMNQUVWXZKRY
ABCDEFGHIJKLMNOPQRSTUVWXYZABCD

If you’re wondering why I (Rob) am writing about this sculpture, it’s because it plays into the novel I’m working on, An expanded version of the novella, SPINNING OUT, that appeared in our new book of short stories, THE OUTLIERS. Kryptos, however, won’t be found in the novella. It’s something new that has crept in the story.

 

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Inktip and Scriptwriting

I’m not sure how I heard about Inktip. But at some point after Hilary Hemingway and I had written a script for my novel, Ghost Key, we registered it with Writers Guild West, proof that the script is yours. I uploaded the script along with a logline, a synopsis, and a resume. The price is reasonable – $60 for four months on the site and every six weeks, you’re able to bring your script to the top of the viewing.

Their site is easy to use. You’re supposed to select the main genre for your script and the choices range from action and adventure, fantasy and horror to science fiction and thrillers and everything in between. There’s a large selection for sub-genres and elements that your script contains – like aliens, the paranormal – and you check all the ones that apply. Thanks to Blake Snyder’s book on script writing, Save the Cat, I played around with the logline and synopsis until I had something that felt right.

Since that first upload of Ghost Key, I’ve written three more scripts based on my novels that are also on the site. Skin Shifters, Black Water, and Shrouded (based on Out of Sight, which won the Edgar.) With these, I used Snyder’s recommended “beats,” which are incredibly helpful – whether you’re writing a script or a novel. I’m just giving you a taste here, the first several beats of 15. Whether you’re writing a script or a novel,  get both books.

Opening image: who is your character? What’s the opening scene of this person’s life?

Theme: What’s your script/book about? What’s the core idea, the core challenge for your character?

Setup: Introduce everyone who exists within your protagonist’s world. What are the protagonist’s flaws? What in the person’s life needs fixing?

Catalyst: Oops. This is where your character’s life and the plot take an unforeseen tone. They can do longer deny the quest (Campbell).

Debate: The plan. How will your protagonist (characters) get to where she/he wants to be in order to experience act 2, where everything is upside down from act 1.

Once you’ve got your perfect script, upload to Inktip and follow their easy, intuitive guidelines, And every day I assure you, you’ll be logging on to see who has viewed your logline. When an industry professional has viewed your synopsis, resume or script, Inktip notifies you by email. The site also has some other perks.

The weekly newsletter that lets you know what producers/directors are looking for enables you to pitch directly to that company. You pay for this service, but again, the fee is reasonable.

What I love most about Inktip is that it removes the middle man – the agent, manager, whoever – who stands between you, the writer and storyteller, and the producer or director who is looking for a good story. In today’s world, that’s a welcome  new paradigm.

@inktip.com

Here’s another script we have out there…SPINNING OUT.

 

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YESTERDAY, THE MOVIE

 

If you haven’t seen this movie yet, drop everything you’re doing and treat yourself to a couple of hours of magic .

It’s one of the best and most uplifting movies I’ve seen in years. It’s also an incredible tribute to the Beatles.  The script is powerful and seems to follow Blake Snyder’s beats in Save the Cat.  The story has heart, is funny, sad, triumphant and perfectly illustrates the idea that as human beings, many paths are open to us.

The young protagonist played by Himesh Patel is superb. The friend/love interest, Lily James, is perfectly cast. The… hey, just go see the movie. If you don’t come out of the theater smiling, then I owe you a drink and I want to know why.

+ + +

There’s also a neat synchronicity in the movie related to the song Eleanor Rigby. In the movie,  Jack Malik, a struggling/failing musician  has an accident during a power outage and becomes the only person who can remember the Beatles. So he starts playing their songs and becomes super popular. However, he keeps getting asked what inspired different songs. Since he didn’t write them, that’s a problem.

To rectify the situation, he takes a trip to Liverpool, England—a trip that baffles his new agent— to become familiar with some of the material in the songs. He stops in the Walton section of Liverpool where John Lennon used to live and visits a graveyard where he finds a headstone that mentions Eleanor Rigby.

Of course the context is that Paul McCartney, who wrote Eleanor Rigby, must’ve wandered through this graveyard, saw the name, and decided to make up a song about someone by that name.

But it turns out that’s not true at all, and the existence of that gravestone in Lennon’s childhood part of town is a synchronicity.

I found that out recently when I listened to a video made a few years ago in which McCartney talks about the origins of his songs. I watched it after seeing Yesterday, and was fascinated when he talked about the origins of Eleanor Rigby. He recalled a childhood memory of seeing older women sitting around gossiping.  He said he enjoyed listening to them, and decided to write a song about one such person. The name Eleanor came to him right away, but he didn’t know what last name to use until he happened to see a barber shop named Rigby one day. “I knew right away that was the name: Eleanor Rigby.

Years later, he heard about the gravestone. Apparently, a fan  had been researching the Beatles, and discovered it. But it was news to him. Recognizing the Twilight Zone-type oddity, he says: “Dee-Dee-Dee-Dee, Dee-Dee, Dee-Dee.”

One other interesting note about the origin of Beatle songs, McCartney says he wrote “Let It Be” after having a vivid dream in which his deceased mother appeared to him. He was having some difficulties in his life, and his mother told him to just “let it be.”

(This 26-minute video would’ve been real helpful for Malik to learn about the origins of many of the songs,  but of course it didn’t exist any longer in his reality!)

 

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Mercury Retro Alert!

 

On July 7, at 7:15 PM EDT, Mercury turns retrograde in Leo and won’t turn direct again until July 31, at 11:58 PM EDT, in Cancer. The last Mercury retro was from March 6-29, in Pisces.

During this period, miscommunication is often rampant, appliances and electronics break down, and it’s wise not to launch any new projects or to sign contracts, since Mercury rules contracts. Don’t submit new project either. Revise, review, and reconsider.

Since Mercury also rules moving parts, it’s smart not to buy a car or electronics during these periods. Travel can be iffy – plans go south quickly, itineraries change without warning. However, you may also return to that spot at some point in the near future. The other thing is that old friends may resurface.

Some years ago, we foolishly set a closing date for the sale of our house, the move, and the closing on our new house during a Mercury retrograde. Big mistake. It turned out to be a comedy of errors all the way around.

The buyer of our home was doing the final walk through and found some details he wanted taken care of before we closed – i.e., screws were missing on several of the hurricane shutters. Rob had to run to Home Depot to buy some new screws and meanwhile, the clock was ticking down to the closing time on the house. Since we were also closing on our new house that day, we had to call both title companies to let them know we were running late. We were afraid that we wouldn’t make the closing on our new place by 5 p.m. and would be homeless for the night with our young daughter and two cats and all our belongings.

During the closing on the house we were selling, things got a bit heated when the buyer and the Realtor who supposedly represented us tried to slip in some provision at the very end of the contract. We refused to sign. The title company intervened and the deal was finally culminated. By now, we had thirty-five minutes to make the closing on our new place. I called them and explained the situation and they stayed open past their usual closing time to accommodate us.

We finally got into the house, but I wouldn’t recommend selling your home or moving during a Mercury retrograde!

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”It’s real!”

Tina Hines had just left her Phoenix home and was about to take a hike with her husband when she collapsed. Her heart stopped and she had to be resuscitated six times en route to the hospital.  She was dead for 27 minutes, and apparently had a near-death experience that made her believe that heaven was real.

When she finally was revived, she couldn’t talk, but gestured for paper and pen. She promptly scrawled the message above that seems to say, “It’s real.”

“It was so real, the colours were so vibrant,” she later said. She also said she saw a glowing figure she thought was Jesus standing near a gate. Many people have undergone near-death experiences. Some have religious-related experiences, such as Tina’s, while others describe a tunnel of light, and deceased family members greeting them.

But if you think these experiences are proof of the existence of life after death, think again, say mainstream scientists studying NDEs. Predictably, they say it’s all in the activity of brain synapses that they say are enhanced near the time of death. They’ve got proof by studying brain activity of rats just before they died.  You can read about it here. It certainly would be interesting to know what the rats are experiencing. Certainly not Jesus. But maybe the big celestial mama rat. Who knows.

More on the science from Dr. Jim’s Borjigin of the University of Michigan, author of the 2013 rat-brain study. “Like ‘fire raging through the brain’, activity can surge through brain areas involved in conscious experience, furnishing all resultant perceptions with realer-than-real feelings and emotions….However, for those instances where experiences may occur around the time of cardiac arrest – or beyond it – these new findings provide further meat to the bones of the idea that the brain drives these fascinating and striking experiences.”

Fortunately, there are also scientists who look beyond brain functions and are interested in studying evidence of life after death, rather than ignoring or denying it, which are common positions of neurologists. These outlier scientists say that experiences such as Tina’s are her interpretation of a real after-life experience. In other words, the afterlife is both real and subjective.

In fact, people who don’t believe in an after-life and have near-death experiences might experience just what they believe. Many years ago, I was present when the actor Cary Grant mentioned that he had a near-death experience. (He mentioned that after talking about his LSD experiences.) I asked him what it was like. Grant made it clear he didn’t believe in an afterlife, and said what he experienced was “nothing.”

That might be an initial experience. But Grant and others like him might eventually consider if there is nothing, why am I experiencing anything? At that point, they might start experiencing ‘something.’

Tina and Brian Hines. Below, Tina’s niece Maggie Johnson got a tattoo of the message.

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SOLAR ECLIPSE JULY 2

The July 2, 2019 solar eclipse is in Cancer at 10 degrees and 37 minutes. These eclipses are like double new moons, and that means double the new opportunities and experiences. Solar eclipses involve outer events, lunar eclipses impact our inner lives, emotions and intuition.

This eclipse is total, but its path across the planet is narrow. Totality will be visible from the southern Pacific Ocean east of New Zealand to the Coquimbo region in Chile and Argentina. Quite often, the path of totality experiences something significant on or around the day of the eclipse. Keep an eye on the news.

There’s a lot of like about this one, which should be positive for all signs. Uranus at 5 degrees Taurus forms a wide, beneficial angle to the eclipse, a sextile, suggesting pleasant surprises that seem to come out of nowhere. The kind of surprise depends on the area of your natal chart where the eclipse occurs and where Uranus falls.

Neptune in Pisces at 18 degrees and 41 minutes forms a wide, but strong trine to the eclipse degree. This suggests that both spiritual and highly creative elements come into play.

Cancer, a cardinal water sign, is the sign of home and family and since this falls so close to the July 4 holiday, your barbecuing and fireworks may start early! The other three cardinal signs – Aries, Libra, and Capricorn – will also be impacted significantly by this eclipse.

Two weeks later, on July 16, there will be a lunar eclipse in Capricorn. We’ll post on that one around July 15.

In the meantime, the July forecasts are uploaded in the blog masthead and includes information specific to each sign about the impact of this eclipse for you. Happy July!

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Dr. Henry Jones’ Grail Diary

 

Thanks to Dale Dassel for putting this incredible Grail Diary together with numerous inserts and sending it to me for my perusal and signature. Take a look.

 

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Global Synchronicities

Here’s the global synchronicity that defines  this administration’s inhumane and blatantly cruel immigration policies:

Through mass events and the synchronicities so often associated with them, the universe speaks to us as a collective – as a people, a community, a nation, as citizens of the same planet. These types of synchronicities certainly illustrate connections to a deeper layer of existence, similar to what quantum physicists speak of when they refer to everything in the universe being intimately connected. As Michael Talbot put it in The Holographic Universe, “Our brains mathematically construct an objective reality by interpreting frequencies that are ultimately projected from a deeper order of existence that is beyond space and time – the brain is a hologram enfolded in a holographic universe.”

A commenter on Facebook recently took issue with a post entitled, Eagles Down!
about the death of a number of eagles, symbol of America. The birds are dying indirectly from bullets that killed other wildlife. To us, the death of large numbers of this protected species that represents America speaks of both of the gun issue and the overall state of American democracy. The FB commenter said:

Gun control? & Because a Liberal is not the President a reflection of our Democracy.? ..wow..not even connected at all…I thought it was the poisoning in the article mentioned below.. Opinions are not Universal Apply to all synchro.s … well personally to you obviously. So yes according to the 1st Shaman Principle. The world is what you think it is. The sky is falling!.. a synchro to Chicken Little.. turns out: just rain.

In an administration largely defined by lies, corruption, violations of the foreign emolument clause, a flagrant disregard for the law, possible obstruction, and an inhumane and cruel immigration policy, the deaths of so many eagles is an obvious global synchronicity.

 

 

 

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Eagles Down!

 

It’s not a good sign to see all those dead eagles in the pic above. Eagles, of course, are the symbol of America and they are dying indirectly from bullets that killed other wildlife.

It’s illegal to shoot bald eagles, but that hasn’t stopped a large scale die-off related to eagles ingesting lead pellets from other animals shot by hunters. You can read about it here and here.

“Raptors are quite willing to be scavengers, so they scavenge,” says Lynn Tompkins, director of the Blue Mountain Rehabilitation and Education Center in Oregon. “They eat things that have been shot. Lead ammunition is the biggest source.”

The Raptor Center in Minnesota receive 120-130 sick or wounded eagles a year and 90% of these eagles have elevated lead in their blood.

It’s not the kind of synchronicity that we like writing about. But, to us, the death of large numbers of this protected species that represents America speaks of both of the gun issue and the overall state of American democracy.

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The Outliers

Available now in paperback, $12.99; Kindle, $4.99

An outlier is something or someone that lies outside of the main group that it’s a part of. In this collection of short stories, the outliers are people who don’t fit into our consensus reality. They’re anomalies, weirdos, individuals whose experiences are vastly different from the rest of us. And yet, they are us in their humanity, their emotions, and in their curiosity that asks, What if?

The stories begin with a novella in which a paranormal investigator looks into a bizarre story about a secret federal law enforcement team that pursues their cases while out-of-body. It ends with the story of a First Lady who hold seances in the White House.

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Synchronicity at Jung’s Home

 

 

In the summer of 1975, I had saved enough money in my job as a social worker to travel to Europe. I went with another social worker, Chris, who had just lost her husband in a private plane crash. Our itinerary was loose, flexible, but we had certain countries we wanted to see.

One of those countries was Switzerland. In those days, there were no cell phones, no Internet, no personal computers, no social media. Everything had to be arranged through a travel agent in terms of flights, then I bought books on traveling in Europe to educate myself. My main interest in Switzerland was Bollingen, where Jung had built his now famous castle on the shores of Lake Zurich.

It wasn’t a castle in a Medieval sense or even in terms of Games of Thrones. From what I’d read, he had built it from stone, without electricity or running water, and it had four distinct towers that represented the solidity of the psyche. He bought the land in 1922, after his mother’s death, and a year later built a two-story, round tower, a stone structure that could be lived in. Additions to the tower, according to Wikipedia, were constructed in 1927, 1931, and 1935, and resulted in a building that has four connected parts.

After the death of Jung’s wife in 1955, a second story was added to the 1927 addition. To Jung, it meant,”an extension of consciousness achieved in old age.”

This was the place that I saw in 1975.

My friend Chris and I stayed in Zurich for a night, then set out the next day to take a train to Bollingen. I remember the Swiss train system as complex, especially when you didn’t speak German or French, and there weren’t any signs in English. Maybe there are today, but back then, no. We missed our train.

We caught the next one and arrived in Bollingen, I think, in the early afternoon. Chris didn’t understand why we were taking this detour, she wasn’t familiar with Jung. But I credit her for being willing to explore.

The town wasn’t large, but I didn’t have any idea where Jung’s castle might be, so I asked and got directions. Turns out the locals knew. The memory of coming upon the castle in those first few moments is shockingly clear. I kept thinking that I was here because of the I Ching – specifically Jung’s introduction to the Richard Wilhelm edition, where he introduced his concept of synchronicity. The I Ching is a Chinese divination system that is at least 5,000 years and since my discovery of it – with the Jung intro- I’d been practicing with it.

I recall how strikingly simple and beautiful the castle looked, there on the shores of Lake Zurich, beneath a beautiful blue sky, and then I noticed that within a fenced backyard, a young man was with a dog. I walked up to the fence, introduced myself. The young man turned out to be Jung’s grandson. If we had caught the first train out of Zurich that morning, he would not have been in that backyard. A synchro, I think, in terms of timing.

We talked for maybe 30 minutes – about the castle, how after Jung’s death, electricity and running water had been added – about Jung and his friendship with Wilhelm, and about synchronicity. Chris, I recall, hung back during this exchange. But she later asked what the hell we had talked about. I didn’t even know where to begin. With synchronicity? She considered coincidences to be completely random.With the I Ching? She thought divination was silly. You can see where this is going, right? By the time we got to Scotland, she and I were no longer speaking to each other.

But one evening we sat on a hill that overlooked Edinburgh and she said that today marked a year since her husband’s death. She wished he would reach out and try to communicate with her. I said nothing. I have no idea where Chris is now, but I hope she has discovered the reality of synchronicity.

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