BY DAVID HACKETT
SOUTH VENICE -- With war lingering in Iraq, unemployment at a nine-year high and the federal debt ballooning, there is no shortage of challenges facing the nation these days.Linda Masse has a suggestion: America needs to check its horoscope.The 53-year-old South Venice woman recently put together what she believes is the first astrological chart "from a human development perspective" for the United States."I've done astrological charts for hundreds of people over the past decade, but never for a country," said Masse, whose day job is natural pest controller.
"Recently, I found that the Declaration of Independence was signed at 5:10 p.m. on July 4, 1776, in Philadelphia. Once I saw that, it just came out of the blue to do a natal chart for the United States."Since charting the nation's zodiac, Masse has been giving talks about her findings. She'll speak tonight from 6:30 to 8:30 at Serenity Gardens, 530 U.S. 41 Bypass S. in Venice.Unlike famous astrologers such as the late Jeane Dixon, Masse said her goal is not to make predictions about what awaits the nation.
Rather, she said, she hopes to tap into the "astrological essence" of the country so Americans can learn what to do to help achieve national harmony."It's pretty clear that we're stuck as a nation," she said.The United States was born under the sign of Cancer and in the country's natal chart there are three other planets aligned under Cancer, she said, which makes for a strong bond with that sign."Cancer is very feminine," she said. "It can be a very nurturing sign or it can be like an overprotective mother stifling the growth of those around it."
Another finding, she said, is that the nation has a "wounded warrior" in its chart, coming from the Planet Chiron in the sign of Aries."The wounded warrior doesn't know how to set boundaries," she said. "It uses anger without thinking and it doesn't know how to deal with its own healing. This country needs a lot of healing."Masse said the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, and the invasions of Afghanistan and Iraq are obvious signs of what she sees in her chart. She said the chart also shows signs of religious fanaticism.
"We really haven't acted very feminine," said Masse, who has a master's degree in human development from Fielding Institute in California. "People digress when they have a wounded warrior that doesn't heal. When they use the feminine as a martyr, it's hard to even discuss healing." The goal of the astrological chart, she said, is to help people better understand the country so that they can contribute to national well-being."People are concerned about our nation," she said. "This gives them an avenue to understand where we are at and how we got here. I'm not into telling people what to do. I'm into human development."
Asked if any political leaders have shown interest in her national astrological chart, Masse said: "Not that I know of. But I would love to show it to some of them."Astrology and politics have been linked before. Nancy Reagan, for example, consulted with astrologers Jeane Dixon and Joan Quigley. And Masse said the Founding Fathers "consulted astrology in giving birth to this nation's vision."
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