People Watching – The stories they tell may not be the same as the ones you hear

Yesterday I read two articles on two blogs I follow. The articles were similar in subject – they both discussed the changes they had seen happening online, how those changes were affecting them personally, and how they had decided to deal with it.

Internet Clutter via Elsa Elsa

Hey Brother, Can You Spare a Like via Frederick Woodruff’s Astro Inquiry

One of the articles mentioned being frustrated by paywalls…

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while the other article mentioned that soon their content would require payment to access it.

I don’t know if these two bloggers are aware of each other.

They’re both astrologers (although these articles weren’t about astrology), and therefore might know of each other, however the astrology community is a big one (sometimes separated by many invisible walls)… and even in a small community people don’t necessarily know everyone else who is in it.

But their respective posts did seem to be having a discussion with each other. With one taking one stance and the other taking an almost opposing one…

There’s probably some astro to it, but I only know a little bit about these astrologers’ personal astro (I think all astrologers should share their natal charts as part of their ‘About’ on their sites – that’s an opinion brought to you by my Mars in Scorpio who gets suspicious when people hide the very things which they’re focusing on and expect you to share with them, and by my Mercury in Aqua which is constantly forgetting everything and appreciates being able to look things up easily).

I do know that Frederick Woodruff has Sun in Cancer – his Sun opposes my Sun in Capricorn, which means that while there may be some things upon which we agree, we’re probably going to end up disagreeing even on the things we agree about (the conclusion or view may sound the same but the route taken to get there, the approach, is different).

My father had Sun in Cancer, and a major aspect of our relationship involved being at loggerheads, trying to outsmart each other – sometimes this was fun, and sometimes it was a source of pain and suffering for both of us (Cancer Sun is better at using their suffering to one-up others and win at human chess, while Capricorn Sun does that stoic suffering in silence thing which is a worthy tactic but not everyone notices that you’re doing it and that can scupper your game).

One of the reasons I enjoy his blog is because many of the things he says remind me of the things my father used to say (he also mentions Gurdjieff a lot and I went through a Gurdieff/Ouspensky phase which left me with a soft spot for those philosophical musings even though I perceive them differently now than I did then), and it allows me to review how I used to hear the things my father used to say, usually from an antagonistic stance (ready to fight, because fighting with each other was our intimacy), and hear them differently, from a more accepting stance, ready to finally understand his view – even if I still don’t necessarily agree with it.

In his article was an excerpt from someone else’s credo, and he shared this bit of their artist’s manifesto because this was the bit he was using to justify his plans to paywall his site, and charge for the work he has previously offered for free.

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excerpt via Hey Brother, Can You Spare a Like

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Molly Crabapple’s 15 Rules for Creative Success in the Age of the Internet is awesome… many of the items on her list work well as advice for living life in general, such as #6 – Don’t be a dick. Be nice to everyone who is also not a dick, help people who don’t have the advantages you do, and never succumb to crabs in the barrel infighting. It’s kind of appropriate that she used the word ‘crabs‘ since the Sun sign Cancer is a Crab (at least it is nowadays… in the olden days it was sometimes a lobster, maybe even a scorpion, or  – Crab, Crayfish — or Scarab? via The Oxford Astrologer).

The particular point Molly Crabapple made which Frederick Woodruff used in his article is a familiar one for me – my father said something almost exactly the same. My father was an artist, a successful one – he didn’t need a day job to pay for his creative passion, his creative passion paid for itself and a whole host of luxuries. However success has a price… and sometimes what was so eagerly wanted as a personal freedom becomes a personal cage, a prison you rushed into because you wanted it so badly.

The real versus the ideal, the real of the ideal, the ideal versus the real, the ideal of the real… is an experience which most of us have to have (not necessarily in an artistic manner)… our ideals can make anything real we get become a debilitating disappointment simply because it isn’t what we wanted even when it is close to what we dreamed of and never thought we would get…

My father only came to the conclusion of never giving any of his creations and creativity away for free after doing exactly that and feeling the pain of being foolish for doing that. He wanted to share, but other people made him pay for it – or at least that’s how he eventually saw it. SO he retreated into his shell (which Cancerians tend to do) and made others pay for him paying for it.

It’s complicated (and I probably could explain it simply but… not in this post)… as everything humans are involved in is.

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excerpt via Internet Clutter

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One of the thoughts which occurred to me while reading FW’s article was that the results of what he’s planning to do with his work will have the effect mentioned in Elsa Elsa’s post… while he may benefit, he’ll also lose out, alienate people because he’s protecting himself and his creations (which are basically himself). Sure some people will pay his asking price, but others will decide that it’s not worth bothering… and perhaps he’ll be okay with that…

but one of the things I learned from my father once he became cynical (which was pretty much who he was once I knew him as I was born late in his life, and career path) and clinical – as in focused on ‘what’s in it for him’, the ‘money’ (imo Cancerians are far more into the money side of life than Capricorns, even though Caps are the ones with the bad rap when it comes to money and what people do when it comes to accumulating the stuff) side of things… was that it was always the ones who got away, the ones who defected, who said ‘your way is not my way’ that obsessed him, got more of his attention, than the ones who stayed and paid the price for staying (in my father’s increasingly negative view of humanity they were ‘the idiots’ and he didn’t mean that affectionately like I do when I call myself that).

I have no idea if FW’s decision is a positive step in the right direction for him and his creative work – I’m going to hazard a guess that for him it’s the right path. He’s a thinker, the kind who thinks things through and through.

But (yes, there’s a but…)… shortly after I read those two articles, I read another one which seemed to correlate with the content in them… an article which (is also by an astrologer, one who walks a very different path from most of those in the community) talked about change, changing times, and how we as individuals have personal power over the evolution of those changes, more so than ever before – heady stuff, is it true!?

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excerpt via Love Your Design: New Reality 101

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When making changes in and to our lives, we often view them as part of a forward movement – we’re here and we want to get there, and to get there we need to move through this bit in between… and it often doesn’t occur to us that what we’re certain is taking us forward may instead be taking us backwards because we’re using methods that are outdated for our time (methods which may not have a  use-by date and which may even be being sold to us as ‘new’ or ‘new and improved’ (the latter means they’re not new at all, but may fractionally be improved – or not as this is a good label to shift old product) – we’re here and the steps we’re taking which we think are going to get us there are actually leading us to a there which is back there.

I’m not sure if any of that makes sense to anyone but me…

when I read FW’s article I was overcome with deja-vu, deja-lived, deja-been there and really fed up with visiting that place… crawling back into a protective shell to avoid the pain of the unknown or the known which requires passing through it to reach a new yet to be known place.

There are just so many times you can do something where you’re able to place the blame fully at their feet for why you did it before it becomes your choice (your mindful and conscious choice even if you’ve blocked that app) that you’re doing it again and therefore the fault and blame also belong to you now – are you going to own it or… disown it like those people who you blame for what happened and keeps happening to you? It bothers you that they don’t own it, so doesn’t it bother you when you don’t own it?

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If you’re tired of being judged… you also need to be tired of being the judge and judging (yourself and others – particularly yourself as self-judgement makes us do to others what we do to ourselves, and also makes us more sensitive to perceiving others judging us which makes us want to tit-for-tat them… which, if they are actually judging us, is probably what they’re doing to us in the first place… and so it goes, on and on, into infinity and beyond until we get off this sick-making merry-go-round).

But it’s hard to go against the prevailing wind, the current, the tide… the programs which generation after generation have believed, and because they believed them they warped reality to back their beliefs up and thus made it real.

Those programs include that it’s bad to be LGBT… but that program now shows an error message, that belief has been debunked (enough to slowly loosen its grip on what is reality). So… if we’re going to make big leaps, both globally and personally, now is the time to do it.

The old way of being, seeing, doing, believing… just doesn’t work like it used to and do we really want it to.

But what can we replace it with, and we do need to consider that because those who came before us laid waste to old beliefs without thinking about what would fill the void and… narcissism swooped in, with its army of unicorns, special snowflakes, and idealistic perfectionism that crushes the life out of the quirk.

Will what we replace it with be any better or just more of the same chaos disguised as a progressive order (that leads to new disorders being diagnosed until all humans are a collection of atoms with diagnosed and yet to be diagnosed, patent and pat on the scientific head pending, disorders).

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excerpt via Molly Crabapple’s 15 Rules for Creative Success in the Age of the Internet

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My father had both the big break (it was actually a series of big breaks which when added up = one big break) which made him famous fast in a particular social set (the people who gave him that big break saw a big break for themselves in giving it to my father… so there’s that to consider, and that consideration might ruin artistic dreams because the big break may be engineered by the cynical, the business person, a sociopath who is good at manipulating the fabric of reality – which is great if they do it and it benefits you, and you aren’t aware of what goes on beyond the circle of you and your dreams coming true), and the tiny cracks in the wall (which he sometimes filled with mortar because… if you’ve ever been or known a real artist, you’ll know why they sometimes do what is the last thing they should do… even if you haven’t had any of them apples – you know why you may reject what could lead to good things for you, but only if you’re willing to let certain structures you’ve come to rely on crumble… srsly, wtf, just say NO!).

An artist may not react the way they’re supposed to according to the myth of such things when they or their work is noticed… some artists reject what most of us are told to seek, chase after, accept even if it’s not exactly the ideal, and may even scorn it (to our horror!).

We’re told to never settle for anything less… but sometimes we’re told that settling for less is the best thing we could do… keep fighting for more and you might lose it all.

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excerpt via Philosophy by the Way: Forget It

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We’re all artists on some level even if we think we’re not even close to being that way… we’re constantly creating who we are, how we perceive ourselves, how others perceive us, our view of what reality is and is not, what can be done and…

and what can be done is often threatened by what we wish could be (our ideal can be aggressive towards our real… and thus toward us, yet it often tells us it is the fluffy bunny of comforting hope we must cling to while it unleashes hell all around us, finding everything and everyone around us to be disappointing, thus making certain it is our only friend in a foe-filled experience).

Who is it who is guiding our view of reality, of our ‘real’ self… who is it who is practising the mindfulness, and deciding what is authentic about us (and others), is it a disgruntled artist within who eventually succumbs to ‘if you can’t beat them, join them’ and then blames them for what happened once the decision is made to join them…

or is it a soul whose passion can live on its own even when no one else gets what it is saying, doing, being… until one day when that’s what becomes the latest trend and then…

what?

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What has observing something else said lead you to hearing about yourself?

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