Mercury Retrograde. The astrological event that happens about four times a year which scrambles communication, frazzles hard-drives, and dredges up the past so that we can reexamine and reevaluate that which is left undone. This retrograde, which isn’t even getting here till October 4th, began it’s lessons by gently tossing me onto jagged rocks in two feet of ocean water while playing with the dog which scraped up my leg, put a nice gash in the tip of my right pointer finger, and dipped my iPhone into the South China Sea just long enough to render it useless. So as everyone is flocking to the Apple store to get the new iPhone 6, I’ve reawakened my old (but still functioning) AT&T iPhone 4 from hibernation and everything that was left on it when we moved from New York to Hong Kong one year ago. Consider communication frazzled and the past reexamined.
We move to Singapore at the end of October -it’s looking like October 29th- and for the most part everything is sorted out for the relocation; visa approved, new apartment lease signed, temporary housing reserved, movers scheduled, and I’ve even got a few teaching possibilities in the works. It’s all seeming very easy compared to last time. With four weeks left in Hong Kong I am trying to make the most of it (#appreciatinghongkong) and understand what this last year has meant. Maybe this retrograde will assist in the process of looking back as we conclude our time here.
While I really, really, really don’t like to be negative or complain on this blog or social media I gotta say that this past year hasn’t been as easy as I expected. I’ve been frustrated, angry, hot-headed, impatience, emotional, anxious, and at times depressed. Qualities that I wouldn’t normally consider to be descriptive of myself. At my wits end I contacted Ivy Raff, a friend of mine from New York to run my astrocartography charts and see if the planets had any explanations for my seemingly unshakable and obnoxious new ways for interacting with the world.
“I think I see the reason for your anxiety. Your natal chart is very active and intense Scorp energy but a baby born in HK at the exact moment in 1984 as you (which is the definition of a relocation chart) has Gemini rising and Scorpio intercepted in the 6th house. In short, you’re a bit like a deep sea fish that’s been suddenly brought close to the surface. By nature, you’re equipped for the dark and the pressure – but in this new low-pressure environment, your eyes have trouble adjusting to the light and your body wants to explode!
In your birth chart, the planets are all located in the Eastern Hemisphere. This indicates a person who has an internal locus of control – someone who feels a lot of control over their own destiny, a mover, a shaker. In your HK relocation chart, the hemisphere is flipped! With all planets now located in the Western Hemisphere, your life is in the hands of others – suddenly you feel like you’re not the one calling the shots, and that is a very fundamental change.
…Given these new challenges, you’ll have to tap into new archetypal energies. The relocation chart gives us clues. Gemini and Sagittarius are doubled in the relocation, so the teacher/student duality is strengthened in HK. You’ve always been seen as the quiet storm – a woman totally in charge of herself. In HK, however, you’re the perpetual student. TAP THIS!… When things in HK start feeling very out of control, be a student so keen that you’re a conduit for teaching. This is college for you. You’re already accustomed to being a very strong presence for others; your time in HK has the potential to teach you reach deep for strength instead of having it immediately available to you.”
So after frustrating attempts to be the mover and shaker I am used to being, particularly in terms of teaching, I’ve immersed myself completely in developing my own yoga practice. My asana practice has certainly found it’s feet over the last year but I literally started going to yoga every single day after this message from Ivy. A week later, I got confirmation that I will be allowed to attend a 10-Day Intensive in Pune, India with Geeta Iyengar in December which is fueling my commitment even further. I have found myself delighting in this focus of being just a student for the time being. Of course, I couldn’t help but ask Ivy how things would change in the relocation to Singapore. She said while the hemisphere’s are still flipped, the energy appears easier to deal with. There will be ample opportunity to focus on and strengthen my marriage to Eric and develop new facets of myself within the role of wife. She wrapped it up by saying this:
“Singapore is going to ask you to put energies front and center that you’ve previously discounted: being quietly contemplative rather than action-oriented, appearing quietly contented even when you’re not getting what you think is right, ceding the wearing of the pants. In the end, places are neutral – yes, they exert influences on us, but it’s not personal. They unwittingly give us opportunities to explore our own energies in different lights. What would it feel like to be as powerful as Lisa Kazmer was born to be, except to have that power move from the outside in rather than the inside out? This is the question Singapore will answer over time.”
I was honestly a little afraid to get my Relocation Chart read before moving to Asia. I was worried what it would say. At that point it felt like things were moving so quickly and it was such a root-shaking change that I had no room for doubt or uncertainty. Looking back, it would have actually been very stabilizing information. So it got me thinking about travel and it’s astrological influences. If you buy into this sort of thing (and I do) each new place on the planet offers you a chance to examine, highlight, challenge, or explore a new facet of yourself as you explore new lands.
Lesson: Travel to the far reaches of the world and be amazed but don’t forget to journey deep to the hidden wild places within yourself and be equally dazzled.
It’s not so simple as “this place is good for me” or “this place is not good for me” but an opportunity for self-development. Travel strengthens your soul and long-term relocation forces you to get through it.