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…”AT&T Park”…any last nod to aesthetic, historic or
even human activity has been bleached out of the ballpark's name. But, of course, it is not really a name anymore. It is an initialing of a territory—the megabucks version of a street artist's tag.

Politics and astrology might at first seem strange bedfellows. Folks of a metaphysical persuasion tend not to resonate to the ‘political' label, and political thinkers tend not to give astrology the time of day. But it is time to shake off the constraints of both labels.

Famed astrologer and political thinker Jessica Murray begins her eye-opening book Soul-Sick Nation with this simple but profound statement. How many cynical left wing politicos have you heard disparage astrology as “bunk”? How many believers in astrology have you seen shrug their shoulders at the political mess our country is experiencing and say, “So many charts—so how can you explain the whole thing?” With a foot in both worlds, Murray weaves them together with the dexterity with which those who have read her astrological publications have come to rely, and the passion with which her left wing political friends have come to recognize as a voice of pure unvarnished truth.

How often must one say about a book, “Clearly, it is not for everyone”? Not so here. Clearly this is a book for everyone. For the astrologer there is the clear explanation of what is happening to our country through the interpretive discipline of astrology. In addition, the astrologer who might not have kept up on all the political ins and outs of the history, especially the recent history, of the United States, will learn 200 pages worth of it through the prism of one of the world's oldest systems of interpretation of events. For the left wing politico there is a clear explanation of what is happening to our country through the blow by blow description of the quagmire that we find ourselves in today. In addition, the politico who may have little or no knowledge of the discipline of astrology will learn a respect and appreciation for why things are the way they are…through the stars (never fear—in addition to a thorough explanation of the discipline of astrology throughout the chapters of the book there is a brilliant series of appendices). For all those with knowledge of both worlds this is a must read—an in depth illumination from a real master. But perhaps those who just enjoy a great book by a brilliant writer will benefit the most. For no one can write like Murray. Funny and poignant, knowledgeable and enquiring, able to turn a phrase, illuminate a point with just the right analogy or metaphor, Murray offers anyone who loves books a really great read.

For this reviewer—who is acquainted with Murray's work for the past three decades and considers herself an avid reader and a student with a foot in both worlds, Soul-Sick Nation is a must-read work of a great mind and spirit in her prime. We are all of us, astrologer, politico, student of both worlds and avid reader alike, fortunate (in all senses of that word) to have Murray show us the way at this time in her life's work. For the politico with no knowledge of astrology, she hand holds with her simple, clear and insightful look into the world she has mastered. For the astrologer with no knowledge of politics, she is a virtual “what's what” of the real history of the United States. For the student of both, she is the firm bridge between these two disciplines. And for the avid reader, she is a garden of literary delight.

“What is your sign?”—what for the astrologer is way too simple and for the politico is that crazy pick up line from college—becomes the backbone of the way out of the quagmire. For this is an exploration of the entity that was born July 4, 1776 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania—its potential both positive and negative—and what has happened in the intervening years with that potential. Murray also offers suggestions as to what can be done to turn the gifts and promise of our country away from the brick wall we seem to be headed toward and into the light of the bright promise of the future free from our “Soul Sickness”.

Murray's examination of our country and us as her people is nothing short of breathtaking. She warns us:

Many of us have tried over the years to understand the blind spots of our family of origin, so as to keep them from becoming our own blind spots. The same process must be undergone with national blind spots if we are to live free of them.

Murray on our need for wealth and accumulation of worldly goods and place is razor sharp. She speaks of everything from the renaming of our national sports arenas:

…”AT&T Park”…any last nod to aesthetic, historic or even human activity has been bleached out of the ballpark's name. But, of course, it is not really a name anymore. It is an initialing of a territory—the megabucks version of a street artist's tag.

…to the truly dark center that lurks somewhere in the middle of our national soul:

Pluto's placement here tells us that issues of wealth arouse the darkest human drives that exist. Pluto's purpose is to push buttons. And there can be little doubt in America, money is the button pusher.


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