“Life is like arriving late for a movie, having to figure out what was going on without bothering everybody with a lot of questions, and then being unexpectedly called away before you find out how it ends.”
― Joseph Campbell
As we're all being deluged with by Neptune/Pisces energy (who didn't read their Stars This Week? Ahem ;)), I thought I might take a moment to give a well-deserved plug for the very Neptunian film and Oscar-contender - Life of Pi. I had read Yann Martel's book ages ago and I feel like this is one of few times where I can say I thought the move was actually better than the book. It could just be that my memory of the book has thinned out or I didn't read it at a time when I could spiritually absorb the beauty of the story ... but something about the screen adaptation was nothing short of sublime.
At first I wasn't quite lured in by the trailer. The repetitive slo-mo shot of a CG-whale jumping over a boat in the middle of the Pacific ocean wasn't quite peaking my interest. Two things were however: I had read the book and wanted to reward myself AND Ang Lee -- the director of our favorite gay cowboy movie was the director. If he brought half the poignancy he delivered in heartbreaking, compassion-provoking Brokeback Mountain, this one was worth my $13.75. It was also Super Bowl, and who watches Football?
I put on my 3D glasses and settled into my seat with 6 other SBXLVII-deniers for what I thought would be a fitting celebration of the Mars/Neptune conjunction in watery, magical Pisces. Wiping virtual whale water from my freckled arms when the aforementioned whale pounced couldn't feel more perfect. Word on the street was that no one believed this story could be brought to life - the book itself, according to Wikipedia, was passed over by 5 London publishers before Knopf Canada saw something the others didn't.
The main thrust of the novel was Pi's (a graceful nickname for Piscine Molitor Patel, a funny story in and of itself) struggle for survival all alone after all - save for a Bengal tiger named Richard Parker. Adrift on a rescue-boat after a Japanese freighter had sunk his family and their cargo of zoo animals on their to Canada from India, these two were to battle each other for dominance alongside the elements. It was an ultimate test of Pi's faith - a self-described "Catholic Muslim" and Hindu, who had been chided by his father for believing in too many Gods. Where were his Gods now? At one point after a decimating storm, the beleaguered Pi calls out to heaven (something like) "I have given you my family!!!!! I have given you everything!!!! What more do you want?"
As Mars and Mercury conjuncts the watery trident Neptune this week and Mercury enters Pisces, astrology would predict we too could relate to that point of breaking; where the real world doesn't capitulate to our will ... where there is at once confusion and a merging with the divine in the areas of willpower and action (Mars) and perception, communication and ideas (Mercury). This cosmic line-up is about the surrender to that larger-than-our-life force, whether it's to the creative process, an inner spaciousness or your experience of God or faith. There is a an opening of the self which allows us to discover a sacred beauty even and especially amidst what makes us feel the most vulnerable and raw. Everything is a matter of perception which sometimes seems our only modicum of control, especially during slippery Neptune times. When Pi protests that the tiger has a soul, his dad admonishes: "what you see in the eyes of the tiger, is your own reflection." Maybe so … and what you believe usually stares back at you as your experience.
Before I blather on how cute CG-meerkats are (and CG-animals in general) … consider seeing the film. It's 2 hours of pure-hearted entertainment and mind-blowing creativity … and good medicine for the magical Pisces/Neptune adrift in the ether this week. We're all advised to consciously zone-out and create enough space for some divine inspiration.