Friday, February 27, 2015

The Seven Year Itch

Many years ago, one of my crazy, mystical friends told me that our life changes every seven years.

I recently discovered an astrological analysis of the ten stages of life, whereby our life changes every seven years based on celestial bodies. Upon close scrutiny, it also seems to parallel my life. Perhaps some of my mystical friends aren't really crazy after all.

The Moon Age -- (1 to 7 years)

In the Tarot, the moon reflects unforeseen peril. There is plenty of unforeseen peril in a new born human entity. The child is in a fluid psychological state -- helpless and vulnerable. The early ego is formed by fluctuating urges, affected by the surrounding environment.

In my Moon Age, I was definitely helpless and vulnerable. I had a caring mother and an indifferent father. I cried during the first day of kindergarten as I was thrust into the world of my peers. Eventually, I tried to blend in by being lost in my own thoughts and silently observing the erratic behavior of certain others.

The Mercury Age -- (7 to 14 years)

In astrology, mercury represents communication, quickness and nervousness. During the early school years, children tend to make connections, to belong to a group of similar peers. You learn to communicate, to make friends and enemies. As you advance into the early teens, you are more able to rebel against authority, often by your clothing or hairstyle or music or your actions.

In my Mercury Age, my family moved from a peaceful setting at the outskirts of Stevens Point, Wisconsin, to the suburbs of Kansas City, Kansas, when I was in the middle of fourth grade. Thus, I had to start my life over, as a newcomer stranger among my peers. Once again, I tried to blend in by being lost in my own thoughts and silently observing the erratic behavior of certain others. After the end of fifth grade, my family moved to the suburbs of Minneapolis, Minnesota, where I once again tried to blend in by being lost in my own thoughts and silently observing the erratic behavior of certain others. In those early teenage years, there was plenty of erratic behavior to observe.

The Venus Age -- (14 to 21 years)

Venus (the Roman goddess of beauty) is the influence of relationships, love, culture, pleasure and emotions. This is the age of sensual emotions and attraction to beauty. It's also a period of creative activity and the forming of deep friendships. Childish behavior fades and the demands of adulthood loom on the horizon. When we are born, our brains are a pile of mush. By our mid-teens, the human brain becomes fully assembled with nerve fibers and insulated with fatty tissues.   During the first 21 to 25 years of life, a slow maturing process takes place. This is why teen-agers do crazy things and often act like idiots. Unfortunately, some of them never advance beyond the idiot stage.

In my Venus Age, high school was a drag and college was freedom at last. In high school, I once again tried to blend in by being lost in my own thoughts and silently observing the erratic behavior of certain others. I had a motorcycle and an old Chevy, and spent much of my free time hanging out in the local pool hall or goofing around in outdoor neighborhood sports. In college, I majored in math, but had no clue about my future. I yeaned to be an architect or a mining engineer, but mostly lived in the present. At age 20, I spent a year in Miami taking college computer courses -- it was the best 5 years of my life,

The Earth Age -- (21 to 28 years)

The Earth Age is a period of development through self-evaluation, a coming of age. It's an adjustment to responsibility and material pursuits. As a young adult, you endeavor to pursue an occupation or career. This is a period of moderation and balance. It's a rude awakening, where you tend to put down roots. Major decisions take place. At the end of the Earth Age, one is often confronted with a crisis, an upheaval leading to a new beginning.

In my Earth Age, self-evaluation was the norm. I returned from Miami to Minnesota on my 21st birthday. After several years of college geared toward computer science, I soon got a job as a computer programmer in St. Paul. Nine months later, I was drafted into the U.S. Army during the Vietnam Era. After basic training in Missouri, I spent the remainder of my two-year commitment at 3rd Army Headquarters in Atlanta, Georgia, as a data processing analyst. After returning to my civilian job for about six months, I decided to return to college to get my B.S. and M.S. degrees. I spent much of my free time carousing and shooting pool in bars. Less than a week after I finished graduate school, at age 28. I started a job as a computer analyst in the Minneapolis suburbs, definitely an upheaval and a new beginning in my life.

The Mars Age -- (28 to 35 years)

The Mars Age is a stressful period as you stabilize your character and strive to make an imprint in life. Ambition is paramount, aggressive action takes place -- a desire for personal egocentric and materialistic success. After years of adjustment and creating a foundation, you have finally stabilized in character, seeking to succeed.

In my Mars Age, at age 28, I totally changed my life overnight. No more carousing or gambling or shooting pool. I was now working full-time, earning a living, being a responsible adult. I advanced from programmer/analyst for company A to senior programmer/project leader for company B. At age 30, I was restless for change and moved to Los Angeles as a senior system analyst for company C, later as lead programmer and general manager for company D by age 32, followed by becoming an independent contractor. I bought a house (with pool), drove a Cadillac and got married. Life was fast-paced, stressful and I had achieved material success. My wife was an Aries. Ironically, Mars is the ruling planet of Aries. Mars is also the ancient god of conflict. Perhaps I should have referenced astrology prior to marriage.

The Jupiter Age -- [35 to 42 years)

The Jupiter Age represents acquisition, expansion and abundance. For many, this is the prime of life, a psychological maturity. You now have a foundation as a respectable member of the community. It may also include distant journeys. There is also an inner journey of the soul, a deeper examination of spirit.

In my Jupiter Age, my wife and I had many travels -- exploring the local region on weekend jaunts, trips to Mexico, Hawaii, Tahiti, West Indies, etc. We bought, lived in and sold several houses, and even lived on a yacht for several months. After five years of marriage, we divorced. It was back to square one for me. Two weeks after my 42nd birthday, I left Los Angeles in a camper to become a gold prospector and adventurer in the Arizona desert. Once again, at the precise end of seven years, my life took a dramatic turn.

The Saturn Age -- (42 to 49 years)

The Saturn Age represents obstacles, restrictions and responsibility. It's a period of adapting self-discipline whereby you become a determined person. It's a crossroad for those who were fulfilled in earlier stages of life versus those who find themselves in the path of decline and depression. Some of those who were shaped by society are now in a position to serve others.

In my Saturn Age, it was definitely a period of obstacles that prompted me to become a determined person. Starting at age 42, I went off into the wilderness to find a better way of life, which included finding a peaceful area to live and finding peace within myself. After about 9 months of wandering around in the wild, I decided to settle down in the desert of central Arizona and purchased a nice modest home on six acres a mile about 55 miles northwest of Phoenix. I managed to do an occasional computer contract for old Los Angeles clients (at home via modem, a couple of times back in L.A. for a couple of days of work). I spent time in the desert, poking around, filing a couple on mining claims. At age 48, I sold my place with the intention of moving to a higher elevation to avoid desert heat. When the place was in escrow, I traveled to northern Arkansas to visit my parents at their retirement village in the Ozark Mountain foothills.

The Uranus Age -- 49 to 56 years)

The Uranus Age represents change, independence, and intuition. Rather than a transformation based on restlessness, it is a transformation based on wisdom and a new state of consciousness. Rather than seeking accommodation through surroundings, it is more of a revelation of a spontaneous inner, subconscious, intuitive desire.

In my Uranus Age, my life became a series of synchronicities and revelations. I intuitively realized that I should remain in Arkansas rather than relocate somewhere else in Arizona. It was a flash of obvious truth. Once escrow closed on my Arizona house, I found a rental cabin of 400 wild acres in the hills about 20 miles from my parents and settled in. No phone, no TV. I instinctively realized I should write some novels. I decided to write four novels, then try to find a publisher. If they sold well, I would continue writing -- if not, I would follow my next flash of instinct, whatever that might be. After I finished the four novels at age 54, I began sending queries to publishers and agents. As I began to run low on funds from selling my Arizona home, I found a 10-month computer contract, at age 55, in Memphis during the 1999 Y2K computer Bug crisis, and gave up the Arkansas cabin for an apartment in Memphis overlooking the Mississippi River. During this period, I found a publisher for my 4 novels. Once again, another 7-year stage of my life took another major turn.

The Neptune Age -- (56 to 63 years)

The Neptune Age is all about transcending from material pursuits toward enlightenment. One becomes more spiritual in nature, rising above the need for psychological security, placing less emphasis on memories of the past, yearning to grow beyond egotistical pleasures.

My Neptune Age began with the ending of material pursuits. I returned from Memphis to Arkansas at age 56 (in the year 2000), the beginning of my Neptune Age, and bought a piece of property with my earning from  the Memphis computer contract -- a nice mobile home on 8 acres of woods, 4 miles from a small town (population 1,400) on a dirt road with no nearby neighbors. It was the beginning of a more in-depth spiritual journey. I scratched out a living, starting with working on the 2000 U.S. Census. Then in 2001, I started writing a weekly column for a couple of regional newspapers and also starting teaching computer courses at a local college. At age 62, near the end of my Neptune Age, I started receiving monthly Social Security payments, and quit the newspaper and college jobs.

The Pluto Age -- (63 to 70 years)

The Pluto Age is the final stage of human progression, where you comprehend the mystery of life. It's a new luminous beginning, leading to a sense of purpose and destiny.

My Pluto Age began with my full-time retirement life. Even though I had written 4 novels and some 400 newspaper columns, I still had the yearning to continue to write. It was a labor of love. I began writing regular blogs and posting them on various websites. As I accumulated material on a wide variety of subjects, I decided to create a book containing 44 of my blogs and old newspaper columns. Once it was published, I started another book of 44 chapters, then another, then another, and so on. By the time I turned 70 years, the end of my Pluto Age, I had 7 non-fiction books in print, containing various articles on a variety of topics. Writing was another step in my human progression, a spiritual journey of discovery and sharing my thoughts in print. I was alone, with a couple of dogs, writing blogs & books, growing tomatoes, communing with nature, watching sunsets, contemplating existence.

The Golden Age -- (70 to oblivion)

As I write this piece, in February of 2015, I am currently 70 years old, having entered this age in August of 2014. The astrological analysis ends at age 70. Apparently, the creators of the Ten Stages of Life ran out of celestial bodies to signify the various stages of life, I have chosen to dedicate age 70, and beyond, to the Golden Age, which I believe is the period in one's life when you finally realize that life is very simple and incredibly complex, both at the same time.

My Golden Age has just begun. Life has been a struggle, a learning experience, but I now realize it has also been a glorious ride. In all likelihood everything happens for a reason. I will spend my remaining years seeking to be at one within this divine existence.

The hardest stages of life are between ages 7 and 70.

Life is good.

Quote for the Day -- “It's paradoxical that the idea of living a long life appeals to everyone, but the idea of getting old doesn't appeal to anyone.” Andy Rooney

Bret Burquest is the author of 10 books. He lives in the Ozark Mountains with a couple of dogs and where life is a glorious adventure, in 7-year intervals, one day at a time.

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Lincoln and JFK Assassinations

John F. Kennedy and Abraham Lincoln each attempted to extract American currency away from the private banking interests (who eventually formed the Federal Reserve in 1913) and back into the U.S. Treasury.

The banking interests in the Kennedy years (through today) are the same intergenerational dynasty of foreign banking families in the Lincoln years, in the 1800s.

On February 25, 1862, President Lincoln authorized the printing of greenback notes from the U.S. Treasury, backed by silver, in the form of silver certificate notes. This fostered growth that could not be taxed and controlled by foreign banking interests. Needless to say, this action angered the international banking dynasty families.

Lincoln was assassinated on April 14, 1865.

In 1886, a group of millionaires purchased Jekyll Island, off the coast of Georgia, and converted it into a retreat, the USA’s most exclusive club. By 1900, the club’s roster represented 1/6th of the world’s wealth, with members such as Astor, Vanderbilt, Morgan, Pulitzer and Gould on the club’s register.

In 1908, J.P. Morgan (purportedly) created a national money panic, whereby, Congress established a National Monetary Authority.

In 1910, a secret group was formed consisting of the chiefs of major corporations and banks in this country. The group left secretly by rail from Hoboken, New Jersey, and traveled anonymously to the hunting lodge on Jekyll Island, where they laid the groundwork, primarily drafted by (international German banker) Paul Warburg, for what would eventually be called the Federal Reserve System (the Fed) -- the new central bank could not be called a central bank because America did not want one, so it had to be given a deceptive name. A majority of Fed members were to be selected by the private banks that would own its stock.  To keep the public from thinking that the Federal Reserve would be controlled from New York, a system of 12 regional banks was designed. Given the concentration of money and credit in New York, the Federal Reserve Bank of New York basically controlled the system, although, it was portrayed as a regional concept, which was a ruse.

Thus, the Federal Reserve System was created (orchestrated) in 1910 and codified by Congress in 1913 to become a reality.

Also, in 1913, the personal income tax system went into effect as part of the new system. This allowed the banking interests to inflame the nation's citizens to become involved in the European War in 1914. The bankers financed and profited from both sides of the war -- just as they had also financed and profited from both sides in World War II, a couple of decades later.

Since 1776, the USA has been at war 222 out of 239 years -- international bankers and many others prosper from global conflict, much of which they manipulate into occurring. For some, war is good.

President Kennedy often made remarks about the negative covert influence of the Fed and of the nefarious covert actions of the CIA. He had expressed the desire to abolish the Fed and curtail (renegade) CIA activities.

"The very word Secrecy is repugnant in a free and open society." John F. Kennedy

In November of 1961, President Kennedy halted the sales of silver from the U.S. Treasury. Until then, the silver within the U.S. Treasury was rapidly being sold off at very low prices. President Kennedy then drafted a bill (H.R 5389) to authorize the printing of silver certificate notes from the U.S. Treasury to replace the depletion of silver from the Treasury.

In June of 1963, the same day the bill became law, Kennedy issued Executive Order 11,110 which authorized the Secretary of the Treasury to issue silver certificate notes, without any input from the Federal Reserve.

On November 22, 1963, President Kennedy was assassinated in Dallas.

President Lincoln angered the banking dynasties and was assassinated -- President Kennedy angered the banking dynasties and was assassinated.

Perhaps, it was simply a coincidence?

Ironically, there is an additional remarkable set of coincidences between President John Kennedy and President Abraham Lincoln.

Lincoln was elected to Congress in 1846.
Kennedy was elected to Congress in 1946.

Lincoln was elected President in 1860.
Kennedy was elected President in 1960.

Lincoln’s secretary was named Kennedy.
Kennedy’s secretary was named Lincoln.

Sometime prior to Lincoln's assassination -- he was in Monroe, Maryland.
Sometime prior to Kennedy's assassination -- he was with Marilyn Monroe.

Both Presidents were shot in the head on a Friday.
Lincoln was assassinated in a theater named Ford.
Kennedy was assassinated in a limousine made by Ford.

Both Presidents were succeeded by Southerners named Johnson.
Andrew Johnson, who succeeded Lincoln, was born in 1808.
Lyndon Johnson, who succeeded Kennedy, was born in 1908.

Both assassins were known by three names composed of 15 letters.
John Wilkes Booth, who assassinated Lincoln, was born in 1839.
Lee Harvey Oswald, who (purportedly) assassinated Kennedy, was born in 1939.

Booth ran from a theater and was caught in a warehouse.
Oswald ran from a warehouse and was caught in a theater.
Both were assassinated before their trials.

In 1976, the House Select Committee on Assassination investigated the John F. Kennedy assassination, concluding that President Kennedy was probably assassinated by a conspiracy involving the mob, and potentially the CIA. And if that is true, the mob or the CIA could have conspired to do it at the behest (under the direction or manipulation) of the banking dynasty cabal.

Or perhaps, a coincidence is merely a coincidence?

Follow the money.

Quote for the Day -- "We are not afraid to entrust the American people with unpleasant facts, foreign ideas, alien philosophies, and competitive values." John f. Kennedy

Bret Burquest is the author of 10 books. He lives in the Ozark Mountains with a couple of dogs and where coincidence is the soul's way of getting your attention.

Sunday, February 22, 2015

Y2K Bug Extraction

I spent about eight months working on a computer contract in Memphis in 1999, leading up to the potential disaster known in the computer industry as Y2K.

There were lots of rumors about what might happen if the problem couldn’t be resolved. Some of the myths included:

  • All microwave ovens and toasters will explode on 1/1/00

  • We will be required to dress in 1900 fashion

  • It’s all part of a vast right-wing conspiracy

  • World War III will be triggered by an essay on Global Warning written by a third grader from New Jersey

  • A new number system, excluding the number six, will be imposed by Congress to prevent the arrival of the Beast

  • Computers will refer to human beings as U2X Bugs

  • Microsoft will win the next four Super Bowls

* * *

During this short-term contract, the manager occasionally headed for my tiny office to check on my progress. As an outside contractor, I was stationed in the last office in a row of tiny offices, near the restrooms. As he was passing down the row of offices, he noticed the guy occupying the office next to mine was asleep at his desk. It was a rather embarrassing moment for both of them.

Things to say if caught sleeping at your desk:

  • Actually, this is part of the Stress Level Elimination Exercise Plan (SLEEP) that I learned in the last mandatory time management seminar you had me attend

  • Darn -- I had almost figured out a solution to our biggest problem

  • They told me at the blood bank this might happen

  • I was trying to pick up my contact lens without smudging it with my fingers

  • Guess I left the top off the liquid paper

  • Amen

* * *

Life is what happens when you can't sleep.

Quote for the Day -- “I had a dream I was awake and I woke up to find myself asleep.” Stan Laurel

Bret Burquest is the author of 10 books. He lives in the Ozark Mountains with a couple of dogs and where bugs come in many varieties.

Friday, February 20, 2015

Chinese New Year -- 2015

The Chinese invented many wonderful things, such as dynamite, fortune cookies and Chinese food.

They also invented astrology. In fact, the Chinese Lunar New Year is the longest chronological record in history.

Emperor Huang Ti introduced the first cycle of the zodiac in 2600 BC. As with other supreme rulers of his era, he had a lot of time on his hands and was eager to impress his subjects with his superior knowledge.

The first day of the Chinese New Year is celebrated at the second new moon after the winter solstice which can fall anywhere between late January and the middle of February, depending on cyclical lunar conditions.

The Chinese lunar year is divided into 12 months of 29 or 30 days. Each 12-year cycle is then positioned within a major cycle of 60 years (five 12-month cycles) representing the characteristics of each upcoming year.

Chinese astrology is basically composed of two cycles – 12 annual animal cycles and 5 two-year element cycles. The 12 annual animals are Dog, Boar, Rat, Ox, Tiger, Rabbit, Dragon, Snake, Horse, Sheep, Monkey and Rooster. The five element cycles, each lasting two years, are fire, earth, metal, water and wood.

In 2015, The Chinese New Year started on February 19, 2015 -- the Year of the Sheep

Those born in 1919, 1931, 1943, 1955, 1967, 1979, 1991 and 2015 were born in the Year of the Sheep. Your personality will be creative, thoughtful, honest and persevering. Your best-suited career will be teacher, pediatrician, interior designer, editor, actor, and musician.

Year of the Sheep lucky chart:

·         lucky numbers -- 2,7
·         lucky months -- August & December
·         lucky colors -- brown, red, purple
·         lucky direction -- north

Notable people born in the Year of the Sheep include Mark Twain, Michelangelo, Barbara Walters, Julia Roberts, Bruce Willis, Thomas Edison and Emperor Taizong of the Tang Dynasty.

The Year of the Sheep is now upon us -- may the Force be with you.

Once you awaken, you cannot go back to sheep.

Quote for the Day -- "In order to be an immaculate member of a flock of sheep, one must above all be a sheep oneself." Albert Einstein

Bret Burquest is the author of 10 books. He lives in the Ozark Mountains with a couple of dogs and was born in the Year of the Monkey many moons ago.