The Design of the Universe

Last night, the moon was the closest to the Earth it has been in the last 18 years.

And according to my astrological mother, it fell at 29 degrees Virgo, and because that’s my sun sign…that’s a good sign. The next two weeks as the universe twists and turns as it always does, the people I meet, the opportunities I’m given, the decisions I’ll make, and the places I’ll go will dramatically influence my life. It will be a time where I’m forced to the front of the stage, put on the chopping table, made to change my tune, and turn toward the light. The next fourteen days are the most important dates of 2011, so far, for me, specifically.

No pressure, or anything.

I’m not sure how much I buy into astrology but it has always been up for discussion at the house that built me. I don’t know if it is part of the materials that have made me into a person or if I really trust the stars with my destiny – however, sometimes it has merit I can’t deny. Maybe because she’s my mother or because she’s an astrologer with a sixth sense, but my mom is rarely wrong about my life.

More often than not, she’s completely right. Even if at the time, I don’t want to admit it or walk away from the guy she says is bursting with red flags. Her first question when I meet someone is never about his name, what he does, what he looks like, or how I met him. It is always: “When’s his birthday?” She often pesters for the exact time (on a birth certificate) because astrology in its technical state isn’t accurate without it, but I continue to remind her it’s a little awkward to ask a guy such a personal (and odd) question on the third date.

Astrology is far more complex than reading your horoscope in the paper or signing up for an email newsletter that’ll let you know if the planets endorse a major investment or a trip to Brazil. While we all know our main sign, if you believe in astrology (or are entertained by it), you will know you have a handful of other signs that make up the pieces of who you are. For example – my sun is in Virgo and the sun represents the essence of who I am. However, my Venus is in Leo and Venus represents how I am when I’m in love and when I’m in the home. So really, if I wanted to “predict”  love-to-be by reading horoscopes, I should read Leo instead of Virgo. The rest of the planets all represent different faucets of life too – like Mars is indicative of my career and my sex drive, and Mercury is higher learning and travels.

Bear with me – I realize this sounds crazy.

My mom says adults don’t come into their charts fully until the reach 25 – an age where I guess, everything just falls together. Up until then, we may not relate to the planets or buy-in to how they transition our lives day-in and day-out. I don’t lead my life on the principles of astrology but I’ll agree with mama that I have reached a place where I identify more with the ways of the universe than I ever have before.

But for me, the beauty in the zodiac isn’t in reading something that’ll make me relax about a situation or be fearful of a planet that’s in retrograde (I’ve yet to figure out what this means exactly), but it’s the idea that really, nothing is completely explainable. Even with the the compartments of the solar system all representing different things and ideologies, my mom and all of her friends will always emphasize the strength of free will and that astrology is merely a guide. It’s an outline, but not the whole story.

The universe is specifically designed but so are we.

When a relationship ends or when we’re passed by for a job that we were certain was perfect for us, or friends grow apart – we can blame it on the tides turning or the sickening slow rotation of the planets. Some of us may blame it on fate – though I’ve yet to determine where I stand on the validity of “supposed to” or “meant to” be. A vast majority often blame it on other people, outside sources, and sometimes, in a blue moon (or a very close one), they may even take the responsibility themselves.

But what I decided, while walking through Williamsburg, keeping an eye on the sky that apparently, was created for me for the next two weeks – was to live. To realize that not everything has an answer or a reason – in fact most things don’t. To know that the path I picked may not be the right one or the one to bring me the most happiness – but there is always a chance to take a right. Or a left. To understand that who I am right now, in this instant, typing this blog, and preparing for the day ahead, is not who I will be a few months from now or a few years.

And regardless if I’m in a city where seeing the stars is rare or surrounded by an illuminated and dotted sky in the South or maybe in the Middle East, they don’t all shine for me. Or for you. But they glow as a reminder to all who look up only to close their eyes and make a wish, that all is moving . All is growing, changing, and adapting – no matter if the planets are in Virgo or Taurus or Pisces. The stars let us know the world is alive.

And so are we.

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