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The Basics of Astrology

March 26th, 2016 | Posted by horoscopesign in Astrology | Basics - (Comments Off on The Basics of Astrology)
Astrology Information

To be put quite simply, astrology is the study of the stars. The stars as referred to in astrology refer to the planets, the sun, and the moon. Astrology has been used throughout history as a form of entertainment, a part of religion, and a part of daily life.

Astrology begins with the mapping of the planets, including the sun and the moon. This map is called an astrological chart. Most often an astrological chart is designed for someone at birth. To determine the position of the planets, sun, and moon for an astrological chart the astrologist needs to know the exact location of the birth, the exact time, and the date of the birth.

The planets found on the astrological chart are the Sun, the moon, Saturn, Venus, Jupiter, Mars, Neptune, Uranus, Mercury, and Pluto. The earth is not considered because it is the point in the universe from which we view the other planets. The sun and moon are considered planets in astrology, which is hard for some people to remember.

In the astrological chart consists of twelve houses. Each house represents an aspect of life, such as romance, career, family, etc. Since there are only ten planets, each astrological chart will have two vacant houses. Vacant houses represent aspects of life which, for whatever reason, the cosmos do not feel you need to work on. In other words, you may have mastered this aspect of life in another life or realm.

The position of the sun also determines your sun sign. This is the first aspect of astrology studied on the astrological chart. Next, the positions of the planets are studied in relation to their influence on the sun sign. Finally, the moon sign and position is studied in relation to the rest of the astrological chart.

The interpretation of an astrological birth chart as a whole will paint the picture of the original personality of the individual. The birth chart found through astrology later in life may not appear accurate. This is due to the fact that other astrological phenomena in conjunction with life events alter the personality over time.

Astrology is the study of this astrological chart, as well as the prediction of the future based on how other astrological phenomena might influence the original readings. The interpretation of the astrological chart is also a large part of the art of astrology, and is necessary for accurate predictions.

The use of astrology in predictions is considered an art for a reason. Not only must the astrology expert interpret the birth chart and the current astrological phenomena, but the astrology expert must also interpret any astrological phenomena that may have altered the personality of the individual over time. Amazingly, life changing events can often be seen using astrology readings from the time of the event.

Many major events in history can also be marked by astrology readings. For example, the fall of the Roman Empire was marked by astrological phenomena. The horror of 9/11 and the destruction of the twin towers was also awaited by those who study astrology. Even the birth of Christ was marked by astrological phenemona.

Zodiac Compatibility

March 26th, 2016 | Posted by horoscopesign in Astrology | Love - (Comments Off on Zodiac Compatibility)
Zodiac Love

So is there anything to zodiac compatibility. Does your astrological sign really have anything to do with who your ideal mate is. Or who can be the best friend for you. Is there a reason why some siblings are rivals for life, while others are as close as twins.

Consider the writer, who is a Virgo, although an atypical Virgo (we think). Her sister is a Capricorn, and according to the astrology experts, we should be in tune with Capricorns. And in fact, the writer and her sister and quite literally opposite sides of the same coin. We have the same dreams! And we know when the other is in trouble of some kind. We will call each other at odd times, only to discover that the other was in trouble, or needed help or advice or counsel. We don’t know it consciously, but it just works out that way.

Then there was her husband, or ex-husband, to be more exact. He was a Libra and perhaps we should have done some research into astrology before we got married. In one article we read, under Libra, it said “No chance.” How true, how true!

So should you make the decision about your life partner based on astrology. Well, it doesn’t hurt to do some dispassionate examination before taking such a big step. While you might not want to reject someone on the basis of his birth date, a good horoscope CAN help you out with some clues to his or her nature that you might not pick up on all by yourself. And when they do something that completely mystifies you, perhaps a little basic knowledge of astrology will help you decipher what’s going on and help you communicate better. And that’s never a bad thing, no matter what resource you’re using for better communication.

How Loving Kindness Meditation Can Change Your Life

March 17th, 2016 | Posted by horoscopesign in Meditation - (Comments Off on How Loving Kindness Meditation Can Change Your Life)
Meditate In The Sand

How Loving Kindness Meditation Can Change Your Life

The age old practice of meditation can come in many different forms. For centuries meditation was practiced in connection with the world’s great religions. Indeed, it has only been since the early 1920s, with the work of American physician, Edmund Jacobson, that more modern, health benefiting forms of meditation have become more known and popular. Loving kindness meditation, for instance, is rather new to the meditation roster, having grown out of that research.

The Benefits of Loving Kindness Meditation

In her article entitled, 18 Science-Based Reasons to Try Loving-Kindness Meditation, Emma Seppälä, Ph.D., author and Science Director of Stanford University’s Center for Compassion and Altruism Research and Education, stated:

“In a landmark study, Barbara Frederickson and her colleagues found that practicing seven weeks of loving-kindness meditation increased love, joy, contentment, gratitude, pride, hope, interest, amusement, and awe. These positive emotions then produced increases in a wide range of personal resources (e.g., increased mindfulness, purpose in life, social support, decreased illness symptoms), which, in turn, predicted increased life satisfaction and reduced depressive symptoms.”

Sounds pretty impressive, doesn’t it?

If Loving Kindness Meditation Has Such Benefits, How Do I Do It?

The wonderful part about loving kindness meditation is that it is very easy to learn and incorporate into your life.

Here are the simple steps you need to know in order to get started:

1. Find a quiet and restful place to meditate: Make sure that the place you choose will be free from distractions. You might wish to play some meditative music during this time. Make sure it does not distract you though.

2. Choose the posture that is most comfortable for you: Although the default posture is sitting erect in a chair with both feet planted on the ground, if that is not most relaxing for you, choose another posture. If you choose to lie flat on the ground, do not cross or bend your legs, and keep your hands at your side.

3. Close your eyes, breathe deeply, release tension and relax: Once your eyes are closed breathe in and out slowly and deeply. Let the tensions and thoughts drain out of you with each breath.

4. Choose 4 words that are meaningful to you (i.e. well, happy, peaceful, loved): You will use these 4 words throughout your meditation in the following phrases: “May I (or you) be well, may I (or you) be happy, may I (or you) be peaceful, may I (or you) be loved.”

5. Begin by wishing yourself happiness and fulfillment using the words you chose: Here we stress that it is important to begin with yourself. The theory is that you need to love yourself first before you can pass the loving kindness on to others. Using the phases above, wish wholeness to yourself.

6. Wish the people who are closest to you the same: By now, you should be ready to spread that loving kindness on to your family and closest friends – all who are special in your life.

7. Wish the people you know, but are not close to, the same: It is amazing how many people we interact with who we know, but don’t really know. This step takes the loving kindness thoughts to them. The same 4 phrases are used for these people as well.

8. Wish strangers and people you don’t know loving thoughts, using the same 4 phrases: This step may take a little effort at first, but eventually it will become second nature to wish a stranger the same well-being as you wish yourself and those close to you.

9. Follow the same pattern with people you don’t like. This is the hardest challenge, but one of the most healing: When we dislike a person, our human tendency is to wish that person ill. That is especially true if the person we dislike has been personally offensive to us by their behavior toward us. When we can turn that abuse around and wish the other good for evil, we are the ones who receive the blessing.

If you like the idea of trying out loving kindness meditation, here is a meditation video that you may find very helpful in getting started.

Meditation Changes Your Brain, So Says Recent Research

February 25th, 2016 | Posted by horoscopesign in Meditation - (Comments Off on Meditation Changes Your Brain, So Says Recent Research)
Meditate On Beach

Meditation Changes Your Brain, So Says Recent Research

In order for you to understand how meditation changes your brain, you need to take a look at the history of meditation and the structure of your brain. So let’s take a brief look at how meditation began.

According to Wikipedia:

“The word meditation carries different meanings in different contexts. Meditation has been practiced since antiquity as a component of numerous religious traditions and beliefs.…

“The history of meditation is intimately bound up with the religious context within which it was practiced….”

From this we see that meditation is firmly rooted in religion. Some of the earliest references of meditation can be traced back to the Hindus and Buddhists. It shouldn’t come as any surprise to discover that western Christian meditation developed in the 6th century from the practice of reading the Bible by Benedictine monks. By the 12th century, four formal steps of meditation had evolved. They were: read, ponder, pray and contemplate. Many Christians follow this form of meditation today.

Secular meditation is actually rather new. It began in India in the 1950s as a “Westernized form of Hindu meditative techniques.” This form of meditation spread to the United States and Europe during the 1960s. The emphasis is not on spiritual growth but on stress reduction, relaxation and self-improvement.

Although both the spiritual and secular meditation forms have been extensively researched, it is mostly the secular form that has now revealed that meditation changes your brain.

How Meditation Changes Your Brain

Rebecca Gladding, M.D. in her article, This Is Your Brain on Meditation, explained the different parts of the brain and how they are affected by meditation. The brain, of course, is very complex, but the two main areas that I will give an overview of are:

Lateral prefrontal cortex: The lateral prefrontal cortex is the section of the brain that helps us have a more rational, logical and balanced perspective. In her article, Dr. Gladding calls that the Assessment Center.

Medial prefrontal cortex: Dr. Gladding calls this section (which before meditation is the dominant part of the brain) the Me Center. It is labeled such because it deals with everything that relates to you. It is the “Self-Referencing Center.”

Dr. Gladding states:

“…science ‘proves’ what we know to be true from the actual experience of meditating. What the data demonstrate is that meditation facilitates strengthening the Assessment Center, weakening the unhelpful aspects of the Me Center (that can cause you to take things personally), strengthening the helpful parts of the Me Center (involved with empathy and understanding others) and changing the connections to/from the bodily sensation/fear centers such that you experience sensations in a less reactive, more balanced and holistic way. In a very real way, you literally are changing your brain for the better when you meditate.”

If you like what you have read so far about meditation and how meditation changes your brain, you may want to follow the links throughout this article. If you are still wondering how to begin meditating, you can learn how by watching this video: Beginner’s Guide to Meditation – Learn to Meditate in 5 Easy Steps.

John Denninger, Director of Research at the Benson-Henry Institute for Mind Body Medicine at Massachusetts General Hospital, one of Harvard Medical School’s teaching hospitals, says:

“The kinds of things that happen when you meditate do have effects throughout the body, not just in the brain.”

Mindfulness Meditation and Your Brain: Carnegie Mellon Research Findings

February 25th, 2016 | Posted by horoscopesign in Meditation - (Comments Off on Mindfulness Meditation and Your Brain: Carnegie Mellon Research Findings)
Meditation Benefits

Mindfulness Meditation and Your Brain: Carnegie Mellon Research

Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania is renowned as a private global research center. Recently a major breakthrough in the area of mindfulness meditation and its effect on the brain has begun to emerge from a published study in Biological Psychiatry. The study was led by David Creswell, an associate professor of psychology in the Dietrich College of Humanities and Social Sciences, one of the units of the Carnegie Mellon University. What makes the results of this study stand out is the finding that mindfulness meditation “reduces interleukin-6, a biomarker of systemic inflammation, in high-stress, unemployed adults more so than simple relaxation techniques.”

Professor Creswell went on to say:

“Not only did we show that mindfulness meditation training could reduce a health biomarker of inflammation, but we also showed what mindfulness training-related brain changes drove these beneficial health effects.”

Now for anyone who is new to how mindfulness meditation differs from traditional relaxation techniques, let us explain.

Mindfulness Meditation: What Makes it More Effective?

According to Greater Good: The Science of a Meaningful Life:

“Mindfulness means maintaining a moment-by-moment awareness of our thoughts, feelings, bodily sensations, and surrounding environment.

“Mindfulness also involves acceptance, meaning that we pay attention to our thoughts and feelings without judging them—without believing, for instance, that there’s a ‘right’ or ‘wrong’ way to think or feel in a given moment. When we practice mindfulness, our thoughts tune into what we’re sensing in the present moment rather than rehashing the past or imagining the future.”

If you think that is easy to do, try it sometime. You will be amazed at how easily your mind will wander. I should also say here that if you are depressed, anxious or stressed, as the 35 adult participants in the Carnegie Mellon study were, it is fully understandable that the test results were so positive with mindfulness meditation over simple relaxation. By its very nature of deep breathing coupled with present moment focus, one is allowing one’s body chemistry to balance out. As we all know by now, inflammation is one of the major causes of disease and illness.

How the Benefits of the Mindfulness Meditation Were Determined

Before the tests began, the 35 participants were divided into two groups. The first group received a 3 day mindfulness meditation training, and the second group received only relaxation training. Both before and at the conclusion of the training, brain scans and blood work was done. The concluding brain scans showed that the mindfulness meditation training had caused the dorsal prefrontal cortex of the brain to function at a higher and more connected level. The result was better attention and executive control. Those in the relaxation training showed no brain changes.

Another outcome that was exciting is that the mindfulness meditation group also had a reduction in the interleukin-6 (IL-6) levels. Those lower levels, coupled with the changes in brain functional connectivity resulted in lower inflammation levels.

Looking to the future, Professor Creswell concluded:

“We think that these brain changes provide a neurobiological marker for improved executive control and stress resilience, such that mindfulness meditation training improves your brain’s ability to help you manage stress, and these changes improve a broad range of stress-related health outcomes, such as your inflammatory health.”

Love Zodiac Signs Information

May 4th, 2014 | Posted by horoscopesign in Astrology | Signs - (2 Comments)
Love Zodiac Signs

Love Zodiac Signs Information

The stars can provide much insight about ourselves, including how, when, and with whom we are most likely to fall in love. Of course, astrology is not destiny, so while the one you love may not be a classic match for you in astrological terms, that doesn’t mean all is lost. By understanding the universal forces that attract you to your lover, you can learn how to make any relationship work, and better understand your own self in the process.

First consider how accurate your own horoscope is. There are similarities among many of them, but find the resource that best describes YOU. Then use that same resource to do a little research on your beloved. You certainly don’t have to reject someone because he’s <gasp> a Water sign and you’re a Fire sign. But, it can certainly provide some insight into why you two clash, or why you think he’s a wet blanket sometimes.

You can really go into detail about the ideal zodiac mate for you, but it’s hard enough to find someone, isn’t it. So don’t walk away from that Water or Earth guy. Use your knowledge to understand him. Maybe you need to borrow some tips from Air or Earth to help manage the communications between the two of you or to help resolve conflicts.

There are many really good books and Web sites to help you figure out the details of your zodiac match. Do a little research. And make it fun! What’s your sign can be a cliché, but if you deliver the line in the right way, it can also be a good ice breaker. If you’re a Virgo, and you’re introduced to, say, a Libra, tell him he’s got his work cut out for him. Everyone loves a challenge and it’s an easy way to flirt and start to get to know someone.

Libra Sign Complete Libra Zodiac Information

May 4th, 2014 | Posted by horoscopesign in Astrology | Signs - (Comments Off on Libra Sign Complete Libra Zodiac Information)
Libra Zodiac Sign

Libra Sign Complete Libra Zodiac Information

Those born under the sign of Libra, the Scales (September 24 – October 23), have a wonderful balance of traits. They’re considered to be diplomatic and urbane, romantic and charming, idealistic and peaceable. Even their darker characteristics aren’t so terrible. They can be flirtatious, easily influenced and indecisive. Curiously, Libra is the only sign of the Zodiac represented by an inanimate object, the Scales. Every other sign is represented by an animal or sea creature or person.

Libra is the very first sign of the astrologers’ Great Year, and occurred between 15,000 and 13,000 BCE. It marked the dawn of Man and his expression of his condition beyond basic survival mechanisms. This is the approximate date of the monumental Lascaux cave paintings. It also marks the appearance of humans in the Americas, crossing from the Bering Strait into North America.

Like the scales of justice that represented Libra, this sun sign makes good lawyers and judges. They’re able to stand back and look at situations with a critical, objective eye. They’re among the most civilized of all the signs, with elegance and culture among their traits.

As a partner, Libras are willing to bend over backwards to resolve an issue amicably. The best match for a Libra is a Gemini; they’re least compatible with Capricorns because Capricorns like a little more excitement in life, while Libras prefer a more laid-back existence. You won’t find Libra sitting out all the dances that’s for sure! Very easy going and likeable, you will find Libra’s company a pleasure to enjoy. Even though they are outgoing, they are also surprisingly peaceful and calm of spirit.

Famous Librans include John Lennon and Jenny Lind, the famous Swedish singer. Doris Lessing, Luciano Pavarotti, Oscar Wilde and Johnny Carson are just a few of the Librans who have enriched our lives in the arts.

Leo Sun Sign Zodiac Sign Explained

May 4th, 2014 | Posted by horoscopesign in Astrology | Signs - (Comments Off on Leo Sun Sign Zodiac Sign Explained)
Lio Sun Sign Zodiac

Leo Sun Sign Zodiac Sign Explained

Leos (July 23 to August 22) are among the kings of the zodiac. They are generous and warm-hearted, creative, faithful and loving. They can be prideful and dominant, however. In Greek mythology, Leo was the lion that was killed by Hercules as the first of his 12 chores. Leos are spontaneous and extroverted. Like the king of beasts, they like to be in command and make good leaders. They have strong intelligence and can be philosophical, even religious.
The Age of Leo in the astrological Great Year was between 10750 and 8600 BCE. It was characterized by the Stone Age, and the first towns (Jericho).

A group of lions is called a pride, and this is a characteristic of the Leo personality as well, sometimes to its detriment. But Leos are also highly self-disciplined and will rarely allow any personality characteristic to get out of control.

They make warm-hearted and trusting partners, but can be extremely hurt and let down if this trust is abused. They have a strong sex drive which can make it difficult for them to stay with any one partner for long.

Leos like to be the center of attention and have powerful egos. They can be resentful if they’re not the center of attention. Leos occasionally need to remember that less is more and they can attract as much attention if they stop trying so hard to get it. It’s that pride thing, again.
There are many, many Leos in the arts and film. Some of them include Zelda Fitzgerald and Alexandre Dumas, Andy Warhol and Neil Armstrong, Roman Polanski and Robert DeNiro.

Which signs are the best and worst matches for the Leo. Surprisingly, the best match is Aries, although you’d think two headstrong signs like these two wouldn’t make a good pair. But it’s their strong character and passion that makes them a good pair. The worst sign for Leo is a Virgo. Leos tend to be a little more dominating than is good for a Virgo.

Astrology Introduction: What You Need To Know

May 4th, 2014 | Posted by horoscopesign in Astrology | History - (Comments Off on Astrology Introduction: What You Need To Know)
About Astrology

Astrology Introduction: What You Need To Know

What’s your astrological sign. Everyone knows what his or her sign is. Even if you’re not a believer that the position of the planets at the exact time of your birth is an indicator of your personality and can determine events that happen to your throughout your lifetime, you’ve certainly met someone who does believe. At the very least, it’s harmless club conversation, a way to get to know someone. But is there something to it. Are horoscopes just hocus pocus. Or do they truly predict the course of events in your life.

Astrology is one of the earliest sciences known to human history. There are astrological records that originated in Babylon in 1645 BCE. Other cultures, such as Egyptian and Greek developed timekeeping and calendar methodologies. From the time man began to observe and track the world around him, he’s also contemplated his own relationship to the earth, stars, planets and elements around him. Astrology may have one way that earliest civilizations helped define their place in the cosmos. They perceived it as being greater than themselves; not something to be conquered, but to be understood.

While in modern times astrology is seen as new age and not as credible as sciences like astrophysics or chemistry, at one time it was as credible a science as any other. Astronomers like Galileo and Copernicus were also practicing astrologers. With the evolution of more quantitative sciences, astrology’s influence and position began to diminish. It enjoyed a resurgence in the 1930’s with the birth of England’s Princess Margaret. The London Sunday-Express ran her astrological profile, and that event was the origin of the modern daily horoscope in the newspapers.

Everyone who’s read a really good astrological profile of himself has to admit there are some uncanny coincidences.  Can we really pretend we’re so knowledgeable of the universe that we can reject the discipline of astrology. Maybe Shakespeare had something there when he wrote in Hamlet, *There are more things on heaven and earth Horatio than are dreamt of in your philosophy.

Indian Vedic Astrology

May 4th, 2014 | Posted by horoscopesign in Astrology | History - (Comments Off on Indian Vedic Astrology)
Indian Vedic Astrology

Indian Vedic Astrology

Indian astrology is based on the theory of fate. The good and the bad actions of the past life determine your fate or Karma of your present life, and the actions of your present life determine your future Karma. According to Indian astrology a person is born at that place, on that day and on that moment when his individual fate is in perfect mathematical harmony with the progress of the stars in heaven.

However it does not preach total dependence on fate. Astrology lets you know what you were born with, what your possibilities are, the limitations, your strong points and your drawbacks. What type of life partners and professions suit you and to expect is also indicated. It also prescribes various remedial measures to ward off the bad effects and to enhance the good results. Astrology is your roadmap of destiny. However your fate is in your hands. The scriptures guide us by telling us what is good and what is bad; what to do and what not to do; how to do and how not to do. You are given a piece of land and the seeds to sow. How much effort to put in to it, what amount of manure and water to add and when how to reap the produce is your job.

After that it is you who have to act using your knowledge intelligence, discrimination and experience. Fate is like a game of cards where you cannot help the cards that have been dealt to you but how to play them is in your hands. You may get good cards but if you play badly you will lose and you may get bad cards and still may win if you play carefully. Don’t blame the roadmap if you get drunk, drive badly and have an accident!

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