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ANCIENT LEGENDS AND STORIES
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Once upon a time Man watched the interplay of the stars and constellations. Festivals
and celebrations were instituted with the repetitious cycle of seasons and Man
regarded the heavens as the home of gods, imagined their godly stories, and retold
them from generation to generation.

The earth was very unstable during this time. Comets bombarded the planet frequently,
there were several pole changes and with each pole change, the greater population of
Man died and only a few were left to observe, remember, and retell.

During this early time there was one special upheaval in the heavens that is still
whispered about in certain circles: the birth of Venus. You see, it is told, that Venus was
not really a part of the Sun from the beginning, but actually a part of Jupiter. You know
that big old red spot on Jupiter? That is what made up Venus when, for some unknown
reason, a big hunk of Jupiter spewed forth towards the Sun, pounded into the planet
now known as "the Asteroids" (breaking it into pieces), flew passed and missed Mars
and Earth, and settled into it's own orbit before reaching Mercury. To this day Venus
rotates in a different direction than all the other planets (except Uranus who is lopsided
anyway).

Before this event, there were only 10 Signs of the Zodiac. All of this turmoil created
another pole change for the earth and the heavens appeared differently when
everything cleared. The wise women of the time knew that they would have to
recognize a new Zodiac because the bright "star" that had been created was as if (some
say) Lucifer himself had been let loose on the earth. The light of the new star was so
bright that there was no night for many years. That is why Venus is sometimes called
"Lucifer" the light bearer.

When Venus came busting through the wrong path, bumping into the Planet M (now
called the Asteroids),  it caused M to be broken into pieces.  So, the
Astrologer/priestesses of the day had to reevaluate the fact that there were now 2 more
Signs in order to make their maps equal and balanced.  One Sign became an M with her
legs crossed for the sign of the Virgin.  The other M had a tail like Lucifer and named
Scorpio. Of course Venus was chosen to rule the Sign of balance: Libra.

Thus the 12 Signs were named. The megaliths like Stonehenge and the pyramids were
built at this time so that future generations would never forget. Of course, we did.

And they all lived happily ever after.
This morning the dreaded letter arrived.  Martha sat down at the kitchen table staring at
the familiar seal on the envelope.  Even though she had been expecting it, she was not
prepared for her present reaction.

"It's too soon; I'm not ready yet; I'm scared!" Thoughts were racing through her mind as
she tore open the envelope with trembling fingers.

Martha's heart fell as she read the form letter signed by the Secretary of the United World
States.  She sighed, "Well, here it is old girl.  He even has the nerve to wish you a happy
birthday!" She let the letter fall to the table, sat back and closed her eyes.  "What am I
going to do?" she asked aloud.  A feeling of panic overcame her as she realized that she
would have to make the decision by her birthday.  "Only ten more days," she thought,
and what are the kids going to say?  Oh why didn't I discuss this with them before?" she
admonished herself.  "Brave, wise Grandma: never wants to talk about anything
disturbing or unhappy.  Now look where that's got me!"

Getting up from the kitchen table, Martha looked around her bright kitchen and sighed,  
"I'll have to leave everything just when I have it all just the way I want it.  It isn't fair!" she
grouched to herself.

For the next few minutes Martha needlessly puttered in the kitchen wiping up an already
spotless counter top.  She was aware of trying to stretch time over a seemingly hopeless
dilemma.  She would have to call the children today; now, in fact.  She must meet with
them this evening for sure as the decision could not be put off any longer.

Martha glanced at the clock and realized that she would have to hurry in order to be at
the clinic in time for her first appointment at 9 A. M.  She rushed to the phone and quickly
dialed; first her son, James; then her daughter, Laura.  Her invitation, though brief,
received instant acceptances.

"Dinner; my house tonight 6 P.M.; it's important; no guests!  Can't talk about it now; love,
bye." she had commanded.

She guessed that James and Laura had been expecting a phone call like this from her
around her birthday.  Ever since the new law had gone into effect at the first of the year,
whenever they had approached the subject, Martha had refused to discuss it.

Martha would be eighty years old on the third of May.  The present year was 2069.  Her
children James and Laura were grandparents themselves; James being 61 and Laura;
59.  Each had two children, all four of which had families of their own living in different
areas of the continent.

The family's roots were in Chicago, Illinois.  It was where most of them had survived and
even flourished during the "decade of devastation" in the second decade of the 21st
century.  Out of the years of chaos arose the New World Order and the forming of the
United World States in 2020.

For the thousandth time, Martha wished that her husband had lived to see that day.  
Married only four years, he had died in a plane crash on his way to give medical
assistance to the people of China.  With two children, Martha had found it necessary to
move in with her parents in order to get an education.  She had never wanted to be
anything but a wife and mother.  There she was at 22 years old having to be both father
and mother to her children.

"And now I get to play God!" she mocked.  "In almost fifty years this is the dumbest law
that the UWS has ever passed!"

Still grumbling to herself, Martha closed the door and marched down the sidewalk to the
clinic.  She was late.  All of her stalling and reminiscing had not left the usual time for
centering herself before her crowded schedule of clients.  Martha called her clients,
"friends." After all, they were her friends; if not at first, they soon became so.  At the age
of 37, Martha had become a Jungian analyst.  After four years of struggling to build a
practice in Chicago, her book,
 Women in Shadow had thrust her into the public eye
never to stray long out of it's sight.  Every two years or so she had created another
masterpiece of psychological insight.  People had praised her on all continents and she
had spent many years jetting from here to there sharing her inspirational wisdom.

Martha had stayed close to home on the North Shore of Chicago for the past ten years,
however.  She lived two blocks from her clinic, and three blocks from the Jungian
Institute where she taught budding analysts.  She enjoyed her past laurels, but had no
book in the making for some time.

"Perhaps I AM too old," she sighed as she pushed open the heavy door to the clinic.

It was a usual working day.  Martha left the clinic at her closing time whittling the 10
minute walk home to eight minutes.  She was not looking forward to dinner despite her
hurry.

The doorbell rang at 6 P.M.  Martha greeted her children with hugs and the usual
exchanges of polite small-talk.  James and Laura knew that they would get nothing out of
her until after dinner; no use to question her now.

Martha was a superb cook.  Her meals were a reflection of her own personality; basic, a
touch of unusual combinations, but no-nonsense, and not many frills.  Dinner was a time
for light conversation, not for discussion of the day's problems.

Afterwards they sat together in the family room with coffee.  The silence became
noticeable.  James was the first to speak.  "Ok, Mom, let's have it!"

With a deep breath, Martha began, "Well, today I got the letter.  I guess that I had been
hoping for a miracle; that the law would somehow be repealed; that everyone would rise
up and scream this law down.  But, none of that happened."

Laura went over by her mother, sat down and drew Martha to her.  Both women began
crying softly.

"Let me see that letter," James barked.  He began pacing the floor, fuming in helpless
anger.  Martha went to the desk,  got the envelope and handed it to James saying,  "It
says exactly what the law states; 'I have ten more days to live on this Earth.  I have two
choices; move to Ceres, or euthanasia with the help of a professional euthanasian.' My
God, what a decision!"

"Euthanasia, " Richard stormed, "that's supposed to be for people who are suffering and
dying anyway.  You're not sick or suffering or even incapable.  Most forty year old men
can't do the work you do.  They must be crazy!"

Laura started to protest, "I never realized..."

"It was all in the papers and TV for months last Fall,"  Martha wept, "but I just didn't hear
or believe what I heard even when I did listen."

" We'll just see about this,"James threatened.  "I thought that the law was concerned
more with population explosion, not exploding the existing people!  One child per person
is a stiff law, but fair.  Euthanasia is another matter."

Martha laid her hand on James shoulder.  "Now, Son, " she counseled, "there's not
much you can do about changing a law in ten days.  Let's put our heads together and
made a decision for right now.  Sit down and let us be calm.  Let's pray together."

Instantly, as Martha began her favorite declaration of faith, the mood was calmed:

"The Lord is my shepherd.
I shall not be in want.
He leads me to green pastures.
He leads me beside the still waters.
He restores my soul.
He leads me on the path of righteousness
for his namesake."

Now Martha began speaking to her Lord directly;

"Yea, though I walk through the valley
of the shadow of death, I fear no evil
for you are with me.
Your rod and staff comfort me.
You've prepared a table before me
in the presence of those who wish me no good.
You've anointed my head with oil
and my cup runs over.
Now, surely goodness and love will follow me
all the days of my life
for  I'll live in your house, my Lord, forever.
Amen"

As James and Laura opened their eyes,  they found themselves smiling in spite of their
tears.  The ancient verse always had that affect on them since they were small.  They
called it, "Mother's Anthem."

Martha smiled with them.  "You know, she quipped, "the thing that really gets me is that
I'll be flying around on Ceres with all those OLD fuddy-duddies!  The only other things
flying around up in that asteroid belt are garbage, wastes, and disease.  I wonder if this
world is trying to tell me something?"

While James and Martha laughed Laura sobered, "you two could laugh at anything; it's
not funny!  So is that your decision; to go live on Ceres?"

"No," Martha said, "I've made no decision yet.  To be honest, I never even thought about
it until this morning; old 'head in the sand' syndrome, I guess.  What do you think I
should do, Laura?"

Well, Gad, Mother," Laura shrilled, "to go to off the earth with strangers, away from family,
is ridiculous.  But, to take a pill and die is no alternative either.  I guess if it were me, I'd
take the pill, but you're not me.  I don't want you to die so soon."

James interrupted,  "Have you heard anything about life on Ceres?  Surely you must
know of someone who has made the decision."

Martha said that she had no friends who had made the decision.  "Maybe I'm the oldest
person living on earth, " she laughed.  "From the little that I've heard and read, Ceres is
like a Utopian old-folks home with everything that earth has.

"Well starting tomorrow, you're going to GET informed,"James stated, "I'll see to it!" We
can't make a decision based on the little information we have now.  You mind having us
for dinner two nights, in a row, Mother?"

Even Laura laughed at that.  Martha said that of course she didn't mind them coming
tomorrow night, but that they had better bring their spouses.  It was time to include more
of the family in this matter.  Martha thanked them for their love and support; reassured
them that death held no fear for her, nor did Ceres for that matter.  She could see and
speak with them every day by V-phone.  They could visit her on Ceres whenever they
had time.  Either way it wasn't so bad.  She'd had a full, wonderful life and was very
grateful for it.

"Now I must meditate and pray for awhile,:  Martha said.  "Please send me your light and
love tonight, my wonderful children.  I love you so much." With hugs and assurances
that they would be with her in spirit all the night, James and Laura left.

Martha went back into the family room straight to the bookcase.  She took out her album
with her family tree that went back to 1850.  She called it her "Grandmother Book." She
mused, "Two hundred years of Grandmothers and their decisions.  Maybe they have an
answer for me." Her fingers traced the tree to her mother, Carol.  Then to Janice, Sue,
Janet, Aura; to Assunta, who made the decision to come to America from Italy. To
Julianna, who made the decision to come to America from Germany with her daughter,
Emma.  To Laura, who made the decision to leave her tribe and live a white woman's life.  
So many decisions, but all of them deciding to come to this land, not leave it.

With the book in her lap, Martha closed her eyes and began to meditate.  What would the
Grandmothers do?  All were brave daughters of earth.  Surely they would help her to
make a decision in this time of need.

At that moment a great light filled her inner mind-screen.  One by one the Grandmothers
began to appear, each with outstretched arms and understanding smiles.  Each one had
a special message of encouragement and love to bring her. She heard each voice
distinctly as they spoke; the words aloud within her head as if they came from an inner
voice.

When the voices and visions faded, Martha was encompassed by immense feelings of
awe, love, and gratitude.  "Well, I guess the Grandmothers do have an answer, "she
smiled.

In bed later, Martha remembered all that had happened in her vision.  She would tell the
family tomorrow night after dinner.  No matter what they found out in the meantime, there
would be no pill for her.  There was probably a lot of work to be done on Ceres and she
had a lot of good years left.  "It ain't so bad!" she giggled, repeating a phrase her brother
used to cry in order to dispel night-goblins when he was four years old.

Closing her eyes;  at peace with her decision, Martha smiled, and slept.  Somewhere in
the night a new-born baby cried.


                                                        * NewEarth Short Story
                       (First published in Atlantic University Student Monograph No. 1)
                                                              October 1991
Long ago and far away...I am awakened on the Sun as a particle of the Great Spirit.  I am,
no name, no thought; I am.  Slowly, then faster and faster,  I am tumbled and tossed like
a wave through a place called Mercury and I am knew movement, heat, and awareness,
but not as words then.

After a time,  I am dropped as if from a high place down, down, down until I am came to
rest on a cold, dark, plain of rocks.  THEY met me there and told me that this was the
Moon where I would be shown what I needed to know about my future life on a place
called Earth. I am knew movement, heat and cold, awareness, and fear. The being that
was I am trembled with fear and I am knew that it was bad. THEY put I am to sleep,
gently, and I am saw amazing things. Some things were good; some were bad and I am
returned here to the Moon at the end.

When I awoke, THEY told me that what I saw would occur when I was born on earth, but
many more things I could choose to occur along with that plan.  THEY asked me if I
agreed to this plan? I thought, 'do I have a choice?'  THEY said, 'Yes, I had a choice;'
what did I want to change?'  I said, 'All the bad things!' THEY laughed and said I could
change only one bad thing...so I did.  Now, I knew movement, hot and cold, awareness,  
feelings like good, bad, fear, I and THEY, and sound and choice.

Again, I was on the move.  Oh, but this time it was so different.  What is this; bad, bad,
bad! I had not seen this in my sleep; tumbling, turning, pulling, pushing, grabbing, my
being has changed!  What is this bad, bad, bad? All of a sudden it  was like being back
on the Sun; the LIGHT!  But, it was so different; what could be the word?  Is that sound
coming from me?  WHAT IS HAPPENING?

After what seemed like forever, I felt cold and then something I had never felt before,
awareness of my whole body; seeing, hearing, feeling, smelling, tasting, needing,
breathing, hurting, PAIN!  Some THEYS were touching me and not very gently. Then, I
was wrapped and I felt warm, gentleness, protection, soft gentle word sounds; I am
here with HER.

As the years went by I met many others called relatives and friends who loved me and I
began to feel love for them, too.  Those were my Venus years and then I went to school.
So began the Mars years.  I no longer met those who loved me, but those who ruled me
and those who did not care about me one way or another.  Then there were those who
hated me and wished me harm.  I tried and tried to be liked, but it made no difference at
all. Now I knew movement, passing of years, thought and words, sound, judgment, love
and hate, indifference, good and bad, fear, striving, learning, school, grades,
achievement and failure, and recess.  I did not like school.

Again, the years pass and I grow older and more experienced.  I learned about the
world, God, Jesus, Angels, Moses and the 10 commandments,  the Old and New
Testaments, reward in heaven and punishment in Hell. I learned about Christmas,
birthdays, receiving gifts, that some people were rich and some people were poor and
that life was not fair. I learned that there were different religions and when I decided to
be Catholic, my Mother and some neighbors were upset. That was the first major
decision in my life; I was 13 and I stuck by my guns.  Those were my Jupiter and Saturn
years which are still with me after all this time.

I've made many decisions in my life since then; some with Jupiter results and some
with Saturn results. Mercury, Venus, and Mars energies guided my personal and social
young life.  Jupiter and Saturn sorted out my cultural, educational, and religious
leanings. The great Sun held my Spirit, and the Moon; my soul.

The transcendental planets Uranus, Neptune, and Pluto played games with my life, but I
was never aware that they did. I only became really aware of them as forces when Pluto
energy nearly killed me as I responded to it through choice when I was 42-45 years old.
Around 10 years later, I learned that the planet's energy can be guided for good or ill in
some instances. That occurred when Neptune and Uranus both hit my natal Ascendant.

Now, here I am in the last decade of my life and dealing with Pluto energy again. Will I be
able to guide it for good as I did Uranus and Neptune in 1990-1992? Is intention to do so
enough? Have I dealt with my Chiron woundedness and my archetypal path
sufficiently? Do I even know what they are for sure?

I have to learn so much more even yet. I will have to account for my time here on earth;
THEY told me so.  I'm not ready yet, but I will keep on keeping on; keep on keeping on...
The Sojourn
(as best I can remember)
A Story
An Ancient Legend
A Story of the Future
The Decision
by
J. Sue Gagliardi