tasty participation: 8/17/14 [#MyBestWeek]

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a whole bunch of us have had a hard time actually beholding the apples of our respective eyes, but this just might be the moment for us to take the first bite. in life, what is materialized is not always in alignment with what we had in mind, and that is why it would be beneficial to employ the law of attraction. some prizes are not to be pursued, but pulled in with magnetism and then devoured.

aspiring to greater associations is the difference between feast and famine. we are the company we keep, so why not link up with people who are on the same wavelength, with the intention of arriving at a similar destination? there may be an assortment of new connections that are made this week, and since it is impossible to know the blessings that these new affiliations could potentially bestow upon us, we would be wise to save room in our social networks for some fresh faces. as the saying goes, “it’s not what you know, it’s who you know.” when we least expect it, after ages of rejection, delay, and failure, the very thing we covet could fall right into our laps. stress and anxiety of an uncertain future expires when we leverage our partnerships to the fullest capacity in the present. after all, we come into each other’s lives for a reason, usually because one has something that the other needs, so there is no shame in sharing what we got!

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the ego, unstroked: aquarius full moon [#StarsAndSymbols]

an unstroked ego wreaks havoc all around town, tearing down long standing structures just to elicit a reaction, because any attention is gratifying. the rush it receives from creating oppressive spectacles is fleeting and only leaves it wanting more, as its insatiable life force is dependent upon the approval of the community and its constituents. what the ego fails to realize is that it is not entitled to the spotlight or any type of special treatment, so it may be rudely awakened as its self-interested efforts are thwarted. if the intention of the self does not beneficial the greater good or align with the divine purpose of the spirit, then it will never build. it will only destroy.

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the roots & the tree: capricorn full moon [#StarsAndSymbols]

one of the great things about roots is how they provide the tree with the support necessary to uphold its composure as it climbs great heights. if there is no foundation, there is no growth. that said, the fullest way for the tree to honor its roots is to challenge itself to reach higher than it ever has. after all, isn’t that the purpose of planting seeds in the first place?

with the sun in cancer, we are focused on the acknowledgment of the deepest, most familiar facets of our personhood. to nourish and protect the life force within is the instinct that keeps each species going from generation to generation. It may not always make rational sense, but thanks to intuition and the assortment of other gifts stored away in our ancestral goodie bags, we know what we have to do at any given moment to preserve this fragile existence. to sustain our lineage is encoded in our dna.

before we get too comfortable, we must remember that no matter how well acclimatized we are, every season presents its challenges. without the occasional obstacle, the experience of life would be too subjective to sustain the dynamism of authentic expression in all its completeness. that is where the full moon in capricorn, which opposes the cancer sun, comes into play. we are feeling the subconscious call to endeavor toward the practical attainment of worldly accomplishment. our survival skills mean little if we do not at some point assume responsibility for the successful advancement of the family name beyond the home and into the stratosphere of society. the tangible achievements we need to satisfy this obscure hunger are the products of structure, goals, and concentrated motivation.

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ecstatic employment: 7/6/14 [#MyBestWeek]

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being a public example of the precision and efficiency of purposeful self-containment will satiate our karmic desire to progress toward the destiny of this current incarnation. there is something fulfilling about going back to basics and tending to the duties that require our devotion. conditions cannot be improved for anyone or anything unless they receive an adequate amount of tlc, and the survival of the species alone is incentive enough for us to swallow our pride and get to work. the goal is to enhance the community and society, but we must start on an individual level, with the inspiring enhancement of ourselves.

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dare to deviate: 6/22/14 [#MyBestWeek]

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on one hand, we are relatively comfortable navigating the familiar terrain of our everyday environments. we know, for the most, what to expect and how to respond. the people who surround us immediately, friends, family, neighbors and classmates have shaped us in ways we don’t even readily realize. the impressions that have been left on us have impacted us subconsciously so that our behavior is a direct result of the communities in which we were raised. every now and then we are shaken up by changing tides, but we learn to go with the flow as it always leads us back to what we know. there’s no place like home. it’s nice here.

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destiny’s obscurity: moon/north node conjunct [#StarsAndSymbols]

Women have played a major role in my life. Not just one woman, but women… plural. My parents weren’t together when I was born so my mother raised me as a single parent, and for the greater duration of the first decade of my life we lived with various relatives. My most impressionable years were molded by the women who surrounded me, older women to be more specific. It was like a community of mothers, each one with something unique to offer my childhood self. There were men around, uncles and whatnot, but interactions with male figures were never as affirming for me as the matriarchal exchanges.

Naturally, my interests aligned with what most people categorize as “girl stuff” when I was growing up. I loved Destiny’s Child and Disney films like The Little Mermaid. The majority of my friends were girls, especially the ones closest to me. I was a boy, and I had guy friends, but I was never one of the boys. As I made my way through primary school, I faced my fair share of judgment from people who didn’t understand or agree with the way I expressed myself in accordance with my gender, and there were times where I judged myself for not being manly enough. At this point in my life, I still have to make a conscious effort to silence the voice of gender policeman that I allowed to invade my headspace, but everyday I learn to embrace my femininity more than before. Despite whoever has disagreed with my lifestyle, I know now that there is nothing wrong with the way I am, and I believe that my childhood conditioning was meant to prepare me for greatness. Allow me to explain myself…

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There is an aspect in my natal chart that clues me into the grand scheme of who I am in regards to my resonance with the feminine influence. I have a moon/north node conjunction! The conjunction is an astrological aspect that is equivalent to a union and it occurs when two celestial bodies and/or astronomical points come together as one amplified, integrated force. In other words, two separate energies blend and work as one. So what exactly does a conjunction between the moon and the imply that could possibly explain my lifelong interest in the alluring, creative, nurturing essence of opposite sex?

******* FUN FACT: the moon and the north node are currently conjunct in libra as I type… how appropriate! *******

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refine my mind: 6/8/14 [#MyBestWeek]

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The potential to maximize this week lies in the efficiency and effectiveness of our cognitive processes. Focusing on the improvement of our mental faculties will yield the results that will assist us in realizing our highest potential. The way we think, the way we transmit messages, the way we make sense of and apply what we learn affects us personally, as well as those with whom we come in contact, so it is in our best interest to fix what we find to be faulty in regards to our systems of information.

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my best week: 3/16/14 [#StarsAndSymbols]

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the moon affects the tides of the earth, rising them high and letting them fall. in astrology, lunar energy represents the ebb and the flow of our feelings as we receive the energy around us. some vibrations leave stronger impressions on us, and sometimes we are more receptive to them. some may call it moody, but let’s look at it as fluctuation. the moon is always going through a phase, so it never stays the same. comfort gives most of us some sort of security, but as long there is something to be felt, there is the chance we could be carried away by a tidal wave.

are we swimming up or downstream? maybe, quite possibly both! pisces left alone in its natural habitat is a little… all over the place, not easily contained as it tries to float away. there is no use for a fish to have its feet on the ground, because we all know it has fins to swim, and life is much more magical when we dive in and imbibe the brew of the universe. intoxication can help us temporarily escape from the turmoil that seems to trap us, but we risk self-sabotage when we become addicted to deception. we must tune into the higher power of the current to avoid drowning in delusion.

still water runs deeper in the 8th house. the surface simply will not suffice. probing the depths is a daunting job, but someone’s gotta do it. it can be hard to see clearly when we are digging in the dark, and while obscured excavation can be dangerous, it only strengthens the other senses. if destruction is a possibility, so is regeneration. this process may be taxing but if we believe it will pay off, it probably will. let’s plunge into the sea and discover the treasure that lies 8,000 leagues beneath.

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the ides of march: virgo full moon [#StarsAndSymbols]

“beware the ides of march.”

“what’s that?”

“did you read julius caesar?”

“no.”

“me neither. but today’s march 15, the day caesar was stabbed in the back by his best friend.”

Vincenzo Camuccini, "Morte di Cesare", 1798,

i don’t know if that’s entirely accurate or just a loose interpretation of an age old literary classic. like a game of telephone, things get lost in translation. regardless of who he was killed, he is still dead, and thus the legend remains. despite our interpersonal melodramas, i doubt many of us are being literally backstabbed on this fine day, so why not frame this warning a little differently? Continue reading

1 year & counting… [#SpaDayDiaries]

If you would’ve asked me a year ago today if I would have made it this long at The Spa, I would’ve looked at you with the deranged eyeballs of an overwhelmed fatalist. There was just so much being thrown at me, plus I was still reeling from the bad breakup I had with my college. it was an emotional flux indeed, but I knew I had no choice but to begin paying my own way back to school, so I began looking for a job. with no retrograde planet in sight, the stars aligned last February during my application process, and the 19th of this minuscule month in the year 2013 happened to be my first day of training. 365 days later, I’m still here.

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I’m still here, yes, but I’m not the same. I’ve grown and I’ve gone so many places. To have taken this opportunity and endured the highs and lows has been more rewarding than I ever anticipated. Profound is the effect The Spa has had on my life. I’ve learned how to heal, as well as how to sell. I’ve developed patience, and a good dose of urgency. I’ve been shown the benefits of detachment, while at the same time becoming a family unit with my coworkers and clients. They have given me the opportunity to express myself as Swami, not just as Nick who answers the phones and books appointments, as evidenced by the fact that I was booked to host 5 Stars & Symbols Spa Parties.

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Although our prices are relatively affordable compared to the more expensive casinos, The Spa ignited my ever-increasing indulgence in the more luxurious side of life and I have realized that it’s okay to treat myself, a lesson that is still reinforced by my second job selling high-end suits at Hugo Boss. I look at everything as an investment, and if I don’t invest in myself, who else will? I have never felt so valuable in my life.

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(some of my coworkers and i at ashley and stefanie’s baby shower last sunday)

How much longer I will be at The Spa I cannot say. All I know is I appreciate my stay and I wouldn’t trade it for the world. Some days have been horrible, but most have been great. It’s amazing the difference a day makes, but a year is most definitely worth the wait. Thank you Hand & Stone.