by Robert Wilkinson
Better late than never! I realized the Sun is about to enter Gemini, and I never gave you this year's list of distinguished Taurus traits and people. So to that end, here's this year's birthday celebration shoutout to the tribe of Taurus.
Each year May features the Fixed Earth sign Taurus, where we confirm and consolidate the new beginnings of Spring. This sign is slow and steady, showing all how to enjoy life, whether working or playing or just hanging out. Being the second sign of the zodiac, this is the time to solidify, capture, and otherwise make solid what we value, or what we need to have to move forward in our life and affairs.
We now can learn to value what is meaningful to us, and not get ruffled by conflicting stimuli. The Sun in Taurus shines the light of wisdom on how we must be clear, simple, and firm about what we value or what we have, opening us to what endures from the old life and redeeming whatever promise it held as we confirm new possibilities.
Taurus is symbolically associated with the Bull or Ox, the creature that assisted humanity in farming, the foundation of current civilization. It was once said that when the wild ox was domesticated (a daunting task!) it could transport heavy loads to faraway places. Combining the symbols of farming and trade with distant regions, you get a sense that Taurus is vital in keeping us all fed and feeling good about the way things are, or allows us to feel discomfort when something is not enjoyable so we may change things for the better.
Mythologically, Taurus is in the axis of the Warrior, or Guardian. This sign (along with its polar opposite, Scorpio) confirms the dance of relationship between self and others begun in Aries. Taurus shows us the lessons of “mine and thine” as we interact with others. It is the part of us willing to hold the line on what we value and have, drawing clear and definite boundaries between our likes and those of others.
Taurus, when freed of the traps of stubbornness, self-satisfaction, inertia, and “sit-down-itis” demonstrate a consistency and reliability that assists and stabilizes situations and groups. They are the antithesis of impulsiveness and the embodiment of contentment and endurance.
Taurus, like Aries, is highly self-sufficient, but slower and calmer in bringing their total focus to situations. They also hang in there after everyone else has bailed. Taurus endures of its own initiative. Convinced in its own “rightness,” this sign loathes being challenged, and sometimes refuses to change its point of view on the principle that they simply don’t have to.
They are usually pleasant to be around, except when crossed, at which point they snort and stomp, and want things to become more agreeable. On their terms. They believe they win by sitting down, or conversely, by being the proverbial “bull in the china shop.”
They are innately kind, sweet, and straightforward. When Taurus’ tremendous energy learns to speed up, consider other options, and express generosity, they offer others simple, refreshing ways to enjoy life and its creature comforts. Where it falls in our charts shows us the way to solidify, value, and enjoy the areas of life it influences. Taurus energies show everyone how to find wealth, comfort, peace and calm in being self-sufficient unto themselves over the long haul, unmoved and unruffled by passing problems.
These qualities all come forth in practicing the illuminated teachings of perhaps the most famous Taurus of all, Gautama Siddhartha, also known as the Buddha. His teachings about the 4 Noble Truths, and the 8-fold Path to the end of suffering, have impacted literally billions of people throughout the world in the 2500 years his teachings have been known. Another Taurus, Socrates, the teacher of Plato, is said to have been the wisest man Greece ever knew, impacting world thought to this day.
Rounding out this immortal trifecta of Taurus superstars, we have William Shakespeare, the playwright and front man for a secret society of enlightened beings and their friends influential in guiding world affairs. Said to be a simple man, his plays are masterpieces of an intricate weaving of philosophy, human interactions, and historical affairs. The works of these 3 bulls will endure forever.
Taurus is featured heavily in American Presidents: James Monroe, James Buchanan, U.S. Grant, and Harry Truman all were known for both their stubbornness and straightforwardness. Other political heavyweights born under this sign include Malcolm X, Marcus Aurelius, Oliver Cromwell, Queen Elizabeth II, Catherine the Great, Ho Chi Minh, Golda Meir, Pope John Paul II, Tony Blair, Madeleine Albright, and Coretta Scott King, all examples of the staying power of this sign. We finish the list with John Brown, the famous abolitionist, and political activist Bianca Jagger.
Other examples of political Tauruses who found themselves on the wrong side of history feature some of the most infamous figures of the 20th century. This notorious bunch includes Adolph Hitler, Lenin, Hirohito, Saddam Hussein, Rudolph Hess, Ayatollah Khomeini, Josef Tito, and Eva Peron.
Famous Taurus philosophers include Krishnamurti, Immanuel Kant, Bertrand Russell, Karl Marx, Kierkegaard, Sigmund Freud, and John Stuart Mill. In the literary world this sign gave us some very interesting writers, such as the English Master Robert Browning, L. Frank Baum, the satirist and creator of “the Wizard of Oz,” and Niccolo Machiavelli, whose name became a synonym for ruthlessness. Other famous literary Tauruses include Balzac, Charlotte Bronte, Anthony Trollope, Katherine Ann Porter, Vladimir Nabokov, Harper Lee, Gaston Leroux, Joseph Heller, Terry Southern, Peter Benchley, Nora Ephron, and Studs Terkel.
The world of music features some of the most incredible talent of all time. Of course, this makes sense since Venus, the planet of beauty, love, and music rules Taurus. This sign’s musical hall of fame includes such classical musicians as Brahms, Tchaikovsky, Prokofiev, Eric Satie, Anna Maria Alberghetti, Zuben Mehta, and Yehudi Menhuin. In the blues we have mythic legend Robert Johnson, Albert King, and Otis Rush. In the world of jazz and American standards we have such luminaries as Duke Ellington, Fats Waller, Irving Berlin, Bert Bacharach, Max Steiner, Woody Herman, Bing Crosby, Perry Como, Bobby Darin, Ella Fitzgerald, Barbra Streisand, Maynard Ferguson, and Lionel Hampton.
In contemporary music, Taurus includes some enormously talented individuals. One of them is my old acquaintance from Austin, Willie Nelson. Other legends include Roy Orbison, Rick Nelson, Ritchie Valens, Pete Townsend, Pete Seeger, James Brown, Stevie Wonder, Eric Burdon, Bono (Paul Hewson), Bob Seger, David Byrne, Frankie Valli, doowop pioneers Maurice Williams ("Stay," "Little Darlin'") and Johnny Maestro, and guitar slingers Link Wray, Glenn Campbell, and Duane Eddy.
Other great musical heavyweights include Jack Bruce, Stevie Winwood, Billy Joel, my friend the amazing songwriter Jack Tempchin ("Peaceful Easy Feeling," "Already Gone"), Bjorn Ulvaeus, Donovan Leitch, Joe Cocker, Danny Kirwan, Joey Ramone, Creedence rhythm section Doug Clifford and Stu Cook, Stephen Marley, Page MCConnell, Trini Lopez, Judy Collins, Theodore Bikel, Eddy Arnold, Bobby Rydell, and Lesley Gore. Then there are two of the most flamboyant performers ever, Cher and Liberace.
We finish this incredible musical list with modern stars Rita Coolidge, Mike Dirnt, Robert Smith, Tammy Wynette, Peter Frampton, Sheena Easton, Kyle Eastwood, Holly Valence, Greg Raposo, Lorie, Luther Vandross, Iggy Pop, Janet Jackson, Trent Reznor, Enya, Ace Frehley, Lance Bass, Eagle Eye Cherry, Darren Hayes, Danny Wood, Pierre Bouvier, Daniel Johns, Darius Rucker, Enrique Iglesias, Kelly Clarkson, Jordan Knight, Tim McGraw, and George Strait, and you get a musical tribe that has major talent and sure seems to know how to have fun!
In the world of famous artists I found only Salvador Dali, Thomas Gainsborough, John James Audubon, Jose Da Silveira, and Jasper Johns. However, in the world of film, we have a phenomenal array of legendary superstars, such as Rudolph Valentino, Orson Welles, Fred Astaire, Lionel Barrymore, Gary Cooper, Henry Fonda, Jimmy Stewart, Katherine Hepburn, Audrey Hepburn, Joseph Cotton, Anthony Quinn, Tyrone Power, and Shirley Temple.
Show biz hall of famers also include film making legends Harold Lloyd, Frank Capra, David O Selznick, George Lucas, and Robert Zemeckis.
Golden age silver screen stars feature Gabby Hayes, James Mason, Glenn Ford, Glenda Jackson, Ann-Margaret, and Raymond Burr. More major twentieth century stars include Jack Klugman, Anouk Aimee, Harvey Keitel, Alice Faye, Sandy Dennis, Eddie Albert, Celeste Holm, Cloris Leachman, Jill Clayburgh, Talia Shire, Sandra Dee, Tom Ewell, Bert Young, Roscoe Lee Browne, Robert Morse, Pat Carroll, James Fox, and Albert Finney.
Contemporary major league talent includes Jack Nicholson, Al Pacino, George Clooney, Uma Thurman, Dennis Hopper, Shirley MacLaine, Michelle Pfeiffer, Natasha Richardson, Jessica Lange, Debra Winger, Pierce Brosnan, Daniel Day-Lewis, Renee Zellweger, Andie Macdowell, Cate Blanchett, Kirsten Dunst, Stephen Baldwin, Robert Pattinson, Bill Paxton, Chow Yun-Fat, Clint Howard, Ryan O'Neal, Samantha Morton, Rachel Appleton, Penelope Cruz, Grace Jones, Ving Rhames, Emilio Estevez, Jason Biggs, and the remarkable film maker Michael Moore.
In television, we find Taurus offers amazing legends Aaron Spelling, James L. Brooks, Jack Paar, Carol Burnett, Bea Arthur, George Takei, Phil Silvers, Dennis Day, Dwayne Hickman, Gary Owens, George Gobel, Anthony Zerbe, Nancy Walker, Ann B. Davis, Darren McGavin, and Lee Majors.
Modern major league television personalities include one of the top talents in faux news, the remarkable Stephen Colbert, as well as real news guys Brian Williams and Tim Russert. Other television stars feature Tom Snyder, Tony Danza, Kate Mulgrew, Valerie Bertinelli, Jamie-Lynn Sigler, Bob Saget, Tom Bergeron, Melissa Gilbert, Joyce DeWitt, Pernell Roberts, Jamie-Lynn Sigler, Carmen Electra, Jason Lee, Tina Yothers, David Charvet, and the extraordinary Candice Bergen.
Famous funny entertainers include George Carlin, Mort Sahl, Foster Brooks, George Gobel, Don Rickles, Jay Leno, Jerry Seinfeld, Hank Azaria, Gary Owens, Jason Lee, George Lopez, Jan Hooks, and Cedric the Entertainer. Sports figures feature Joe Louis, Willie Mays, Yogi Berra, Reggie Jackson, Meadowlark Lemon, Emmitt Smith, George Brett, Brroks Robinson, Dennis Rodman, Andre Agassi, David Beckham, and Sugar Ray Robinson.
Other heavyweights across several fields include the courageous pioneering journalists Edward R. Murrow and Mike Wallace, pioneer dancer-choreographer Martha Graham, Margot Fonteyn, Judith Jameson, “Citizen Kane” William Randolph Hearst, scientist Pierre Curie, Dr. Benjamin Spock, the man who influenced several generations of child-rearing, famous naturalists John Muir and John James Audubon, Mel Tucker, Samuel Morse (Morse Code), Florence Nightengale, Robert Peary, Casey Kasem, Doug Henning, and Edwin Land, the inventor of the camera.
A special note must be given to the Taurus who was one of the greatest astrologers of all time, William Lilly. His remarkably durable work on horary astrology is still in print after almost 400 years, and the prime source for most teachings on the horary craft. His steadiness of purpose and reliability of knowledge in several fields served England well during the Revolution, plague, and great fire of London.
Another Taurus astrologer for the ages was my old friend Carl Payne Tobey. The first "statistical" astrologer, he was an amazing blend of down to Earth humor and pragmatic analysis, and of course as many know, one of the legendary Grant Lewi's best friends. I have always treasured the years I knew Carl, for his wit, wisdom, and generosity of spirit. His works are still relevant and insightful to this day, so find them when you can.
Finally, a big happy birthday to Holland, Great Britain, Ireland, Australia, Israel, Poland, Tasmania, the states of Minnesota and Georgia, the Transcontinental Railroad, the fascistic AMA, Empire State Building, Coca-Cola, Suez Canal, and the Virgin Mary showing up at Fatima, Portugal, in 1917.
Copyright © 2008 Robert Wilkinson