Published on Oct 18, 2009
Donovan in Concert 1972. Live on BBC.
The Full Moon is a time of fruition and culmination. We receive clear feedback about what is and isn’t working, and see shifts we can make to get better results. At the Full Moon in Libra, relationships of all kinds come into focus. Can we be ourselves in relationship, or do we hide behind masks? Did we set boundaries to make certain our needs are met? Can we allow others to be themselves, without judgments or expectations? Are we giving more than we’re receiving, or vice versa?
This Full Moon occurs in the wave of momentum following the first equinox of the year (March 20), a powerful turning point as the Sun starts a new astrological cycle. The Sun, exalted in fiery Aries, pushes us forward, along with several other planets in cardinal (initiating) signs. But other cosmic forces caution us to slow down so we can be more deliberate in what we’re creating. Mercury is retrograde (March 22 to April 15), a time to rethink our desires and direction and realign with our authentic essence. Retrograde Mercuryconjunct the Sun at the Full Moon invites us to get a new perspective on our relationships by looking deeply within ourselves.
Reinforcing the call to slow down, Mars, ruler of Aries, is conjunct Saturn in Capricorn, and both planets square the Full Moon. Mars is the youthful masculine, our drive and desire, while Saturn is the wise elder, who takes a longer view and ensures we’re on path and in our integrity. Mars–Saturn has been described as “driving with the brakes on,” and we’re advised to stop the car altogether and take time to reflect on our motivations and long-term goals. The conjunction (exact April 2) starts a new two-year cycle of bringing our desires into reality, and it’s time to clarify and commit to going after what we really want. This is an especially powerful seed-planting time, when we can harness Capricorn focus, strength, and persistence to achieve our goals.
The square from Mars–Saturn to the Full Moon suggests we may be tested in our relationships as we forge a new direction. We’re navigating the delicate balance of staying true to ourselves while taking others’ desires and priorities into account. This is a call for greater maturity in our relationships and deeper centering in our inner authority. When we know ourselves as the author of our own life, we have no need to try to control others or be controlled by them. If we find ourselves caught up in the polarizing tension of the Full Moon, we can step into the older, wiser part of ourselves that can see the both/and instead of getting stuck in the either/or. We can reach for compassionate detachment — the impartiality of the Libra Scales — to see situations from a more neutral perspective.
Venus, ruler of Libra, is in Taurus, the other sign of her home. While Libra (air) is the masculine or outward expression of Venus, the sign of relating to others, Taurus (earth) is the feminine or inward expression of self-love and self-worth. Venus in Taurus reminds us that whatever is manifesting in our relationships is a reflection of this primary relationship with self.
Venus trines the Mars–Saturn conjunction, supporting us to align our masculine drives with our feminine values and needs. While the masculine asks if it’s possible, the feminine asks if it’s valuable. We’re experiencing the destructive effects of a culture that discounts the feminine, as well as a constant stream of new products and technologies that don’t add value to our lives or to the planet. This Full Moon brings an opportunity for rebalancing that dynamic by listening deeply to our bodies and our hearts for what’s truly needed in our lives and in the world. Venus in Taurus also recommends bringing ease and pleasure to our Mars–Saturn efforts, to slow down and enjoy the process rather than be overly focused on the end goal — to remember that the journey is the destination.
Written by Emily Trinkaus for the Mountain Astrologer Magazine
Joseph Andre as Paul San Marco
Sammy Williams, who won a Tony Award in his Broadway acting debut for his wrenching monologue as Paul, the tormented young gay man and aspiring dancer seeking artistic validation, in the original production of “A Chorus Line,” died on Saturday in North Hollywood, Calif. He was 69.
The cause was cancer, his brother Carmen said.
Written in the decade before the AIDS epidemic placed gay rights on the nation’s agenda, Mr. Williams’s role was considered cathartic for people who felt in a similar position — young, bullied and reticent about their sexual orientation if not embarrassed by it.
A record-breaking musical about backstage life — it won nine Tonys and a Pulitzer Prize — “A Chorus Line” was a play within a play. The audience often squirmed as an exacting director whittled down applicants for the chorus during auditions not only by watching them perform but also by extracting revelatory confessions of why they so desperately wanted to dance.
Mr. Williams was 26 when he first played Paul San Marco, an awkward and shy gay Puerto Rican dancer from Spanish Harlem. It was his first speaking part.
When it was his turn to be grilled by the director in the play, he delivers a nearly 10-minute introspective monologue recounting how he had dropped out of Catholic school, despairingly joined an itinerant drag troupe and is now hungry for a legitimate job dancing to validate his life.
“And there they were standing in the middle of all these . . . And all they said to me was, ‘Please write, make sure you eat and take care of yourself.’ And just before my parents left, my father turned to the producer and he said, ‘Take care of my son . . .’ That was the first time he ever called me that.”
Ben Brantley, the New York Times’ chief drama critic, later wrote that the monologue “brought shattered audiences to tears when Sammy Williams delivered it.”
Harris Green agreed in The Times that “the longest — and most excruciatingly sentimental — of all these narratives would have been unbearable if Sammy Williams hadn’t been so affectingly understated as the homosexual doomed to a career in drag shows.”
Mr. Williams won the Tony Award for best performance by a featured actor in a musical in 1976 as well as an Obie Award.
“A Chorus Line,” produced by Joseph Papp for the Public Theater, opened at the Shubert Theater on July 25, 1975. It played 6,137 performances, becoming Broadway’s longest-running production until 1997, when it was overtaken by “Cats.”
The script was a case of art imitating life. It was heavily drawn from taped interviews with actual dancers, leavened by a hefty dose of artistic license.
Paul’s story was drawn from that of Nicholas Dante, who wrote the book for the show with James Kirkwood Jr. It also mirrored Mr. Williams’s own journey from personal humiliation to self-awareness and acceptance and to professional recognition.
Samuel Joseph Williams was born on Nov. 13, 1948, in Trenton to Joseph Williams, a factory worker, and the former Nona Dibella, who worked in a hospital.
In addition to his brother Carmen, he is survived by his father; another brother, Joseph; and his stepmother, Julie Williams.
As a boy, Mr. Williams would tag along to his sister’s dance classes. One day, as the story goes, when she didn’t feel like dancing, he announced, “I can do that!” — four words that were immortalized in a song by the same name in “A Chorus Line.”
“Although I ended up doing ‘I Can Do That’ in the show,” said Wayne Cilento, who played the role of the singer and tap-dancer Mike Costa in the original production, “it was actually the story of Sammy Williams.”
After graduating from Steinert High School in Hamilton Township, N.J., where he performed in school plays, Mr. Williams, at 19, went to New York to try his luck. Within a year he had landed in the ensemble of David Merrick’s “The Happy Time” on Broadway (where he also understudied for 20 parts). He later danced opposite Lauren Bacall in “Applause,” which opened in 1970.
After winning the Tony, Mr. Williams’s life imitated art.
In the play, Paul injures his knee during an audition, and, in a painful reminder of fleeting fame, he is dropped as one of the remaining candidates for the chorus.
Mr. Williams, who was gay, played Paul on Broadway until April 24, 1976. In mid-1978, he reprised the role in Los Angeles, hoping for film offers there. But his agent told him mercilessly, “You can put your Tony away; it doesn’t mean anything in this town.”
Mr. Williams grew a beard and managed to get cast as a drug dealer in an episode of “Kojak” on television, but he lamented, “Nobody recognized me, not even my agent.”
In 1983, he returned to the Broadway cast of “A Chorus Line” for two years, but by then, he said, the depictions on stage seemed less authentic.
“Originally, we were those characters we played,” he said at the time. “The people now are acting what we were.”
The show was transformed into a film, directed by Richard Attenborough, in 1985, but Mr. Williams wasn’t cast in it. (Cameron English got the part of Paul.) He later moved to California permanently and worked full-time as a florist. He also performed episodically in touring and regional productions and in a one-man autobiographical show, “And the Winner Is.”
By evoking the decades when Mr. Williams was, indeed, a winner, the show’s title was an implicit reminder — if Mr. Williams or Paul San Marco needed one — of fame’s ephemerality.
“When ‘A Chorus Line’ opened, we were really it,” Mr. Williams said. “But when it’s over, so are you.”
Published on Mar 10, 2018
Alan Steinfeld in a conversation with Deepak Chopra, MD, ‘The Healing Self – A Revolutionary New Plan to Supercharge Your Immunity and Stay Well for Life.’
Published on Apr 23, 2011
Fabrice Eulry …
Serviteur de toutes les musiques en général et du piano en particulier. Outre ses concerts solo, il joue aussi bien avec des artistes comme Iggy Pop, Ayo, Rhoda Scott, Catherine Ringer, Claude Bolling, Nancy Holloway, Big Jay Mac Neely, Joël Daydé, Gary Wiggins, qu’avec la grande harpiste Isabelle Perrin ou les cordes de l’ensemble prélude de Paris.
Le site officiel de Fabrice Eulry : http://www.fabriceeulry.com
Translated into English:
(Courtesy of Gwyllm Llwydd.)
We have explained before that some of the greatest thinkers in history found reasons to reject democracy. Their critiques were many, and often very well thought out. Even for the most ardent supporter of democratic ideals, their arguments must give us pause and lead us to reflect on our notions of government and society.
Socrates had several issues with democracy, most of them stemming from events that took place during his lifetime in Athens. Some of the decisions made by the Athenian democracy were rather insane and made by a body politic that had no business trying to determine foreign policy. Socrates is depicted in Plato’s Republic as favoring a totalitarian regime managed by iron-fisted philosopher kings, in which all citizens are raised to fit a particular role, the state regulates bedtime stories, and harmony between individual and society reigns supreme.
His objections to democracy are countered in the works of John Stuart Mill, whose love of democracy is as great as Socrates’ hatred of it.
John Stuart Mill was an English philosopher in the 19th century who is best known for his work on utilitarianism, though his writings span an incredible range of topics. His ideas on democracy, liberty, and the benefits of both are laid out in two of his works; On Liberty, and Considerations on Representative Government.
What does he have to tell us?
While Mill agrees that the unwashed masses should not have absolute power, in Considerations on Representative Government he argues for a giving the votes of the educated more weight than anybody else’s; he counters Socrates’ idea of the philosopher king with an observation on what happens to the citizens of a “good” despotism. Seeing the society they would rule as being:
“One man of superhuman mental activity managing the entire affairs of a mentally passive people. Their passivity is implied in the very idea of absolute power. The nation as a whole, and every individual composing it, are without any potential voice in their own destiny. They exercise no will in respect to their collective interests. All is decided for them by a will not their own, which it is legally a crime for them to disobey. What sort of human beings can be formed under such a regimen? What development can either their thinking or their active faculties attain under it?”
The population living in a despotic society would be reduced to unthinking drones who need only enough mental capacity to get their daily chores done. Only a democracy can produce citizens capable of enough cognitive power to maintain a democracy, argues Mill, by requiring them to use that mental ability. He notes with envy that while the typical English voter only had to be prepared to vote and serve on a jury, the typical Athenian had to be ready to serve in nearly any office that existed. Mill sees this as a mostly good thing, as it requires the Athenian to be more fully developed as a person in order to fill those roles.
Could a Socrates have been produced in Sparta? Mill thinks not, despite Socrates’ praise for the Spartan government.
Democracy is great and all, but why is freedom good?
In On Liberty, Mill argues that we all need the freedom to choose our lifestyles. This is vital, as without this liberty people will be stifled and unable to explore new ideas, make discoveries, and fully develop as people. In a society where we must all follow the same religion, value the same things, and enjoy the same hobbies, individualism can never flourish. Mill sees this as a horrible situation, explaining that:
“It is only the cultivation of individuality which produces, or can produce, well developed human beings.” and “In proportion to the development of his individuality, each person becomes more valuable to himself, and therefore capable of being more valuable to others.”*
In Considerations on Representative Government, he notes that the best defense of liberty is an active population working inside of a democratic system. Mill allows us to connect the dots. Only a democratic government can safeguard freedom, and only a free society can hope to promote the development of the individual. The development of the individual is both good by itself and as a means to other ends. We, therefore, need democracy to help individualism and self-development to flourish and the world to progress.
But democracy can lead to such dangerous outcomes! Look to Athens and their mob!
Mill understands that people might make bad choices when they vote. However, he points out that the United Kingdom and the United States of the 19th century were doing rather well compared to the authoritarian states of Eastern Europe and Asia. He also reminded us that Athens, even with occasional lapses in judgment, produced much greater men than did any of the other Greek city-states. Liberty gives positive results, so it seems.
So, was Socrates just wrong about everything?
It is important to remember, however, that Mill was a progressive. He saw the march of history as moving ever forward and the ideal society as one that understood this progress was possible and promoted it. The ancient Greeks were interested in harmony, and in the Republic Plato built a utopia that would remain harmonious for the longest time possible. They even went so far as to define justice as harmony between parts of the whole, both for people and cities. The goals of Mill and Socrates differ considerably, and this must be remembered when comparing their worldviews.
Socrates offers us some excellent critiques of democracy. The problem of properly educating the voters, the threats of demagoguery, and the insistence that the people with direct power should be enlightened are all valuable insights. However, Mill shows us how democracy, flawed as it may be, offers us the best opportunity for growth as individuals and as a society. If, of course, we are willing to do what it takes to make democracy work.
*Mill was a utilitarian. He firmly believed that democracy and freedom lead to better outcomes and more happiness than tyranny. A common objection to utilitarian endorsements to democracy is that if it could be proven that oppression leads to better results, we would be morally obligated to institute that instead. Mill does dodge this problem, somewhat, by placing a high value on individualism. A high enough value, perhaps, to always make the math come down on the side of liberty. If this solves the problem or not is another issue.
One of the worst moments of a person’s life is when they finally realize that they’re mortal and are going to die, especially when it’s a person like you who only sees the cement truck at the last second.
You’ve been looking for true love for so long now that you’ve forgotten to do anything else, which should give you a clue as to why you didn’t enjoy Comic-Con.
You just don’t see what place slingshots have in today’s modern world, which is yet another reason why you are such a terrible parent.
Your irrational fear of sharks will disappear forever this week and be replaced with an extremely educated and informed fear of sharks.
The universe would like to thank you for your participation, hopes you know that you were really great, and wishes you luck in all your future endeavors.
You’ll probably be surprised how quickly you become used to your new life, but then again, since you’ll leave most of your frontal lobe back in your old life, maybe you won’t be.
Your theory that, “After this, they won’t dare to elect another one of those bastards,” sounds hopeful, but it flies in the face of everything we’ve learned in the past 20 years.
You’re generous to a fault, that fault being that you’ve acquired a reputation as the guy who always comes up with the ransom money.
You’ll uncover startling proof that there, is in fact, nothing more to life than sitting around watching True Blood all day.
The events of your life will continue to uncannily mirror those depicted in the film Ferris Bueller’s Day Off. Next week: Hôtel Terminus.
Please try to keep in mind that high summer temperatures do not indicate the end of the world. The magma flowing up from the cracks in the earth, however, bear thinking about.
A few years after reading his father’s copy of Kant’s Prolegomena to any Future Metaphysics, the physicist Ernst Mach had this experience which he later wrote about.
“On a bright summer day in the open air, the world with my ego suddenly appeared to me as one coherent mass of sensations,” Mach wrote. He felt, in that moment, there was no reality sitting “out there,” independent of his sensations, and likewise that there was no self sitting “in here,” independent of its sensations. He grew certain that there could be no real difference between mind and matter, between perceiving subject and perceived object. “This moment was decisive for my whole view,” he wrote (from “When Einstein Tilted at Windmills: The young physicist’s quest to prove the theories of Ernst Mach” by Amanda Gefter (nautil.us)).
“The eye with which I see God is the same eye with which God sees me: my eye and God’s eye are one eye, one seeing, one knowing and one love.”
–Meister Eckhart (1260 – 1328), was a German theologian, philosopher and mystic, born near Gotha, in the Landgraviate of Thuringia in the Holy Roman Empire.Wikipedia