My thoughts have been occupied lately by a very dear Libra man. His name is James Hubbell, and he turned 90 last October 23. Many San Diegans know him as the gifted artist-sculptor who created a wonderland of adobe dwellings inlaid with mosaic and stained glass in the peaceful mountains near Julian (now known as the Ilan Lael Center). Hubbell and his wife Anne lived there for over 60 years, until his battle with Parkinson’s forced them last fall to relocate to an assisted living facility closer to the sea.
When I learned this sad news, I had to see how they were faring. I’d interviewed Jim twenty years ago for KPBS, and had been following him ever since. So I recently drove to Chula Vista for another chat. And, I wrote up a feature in honor of his first one-man show in L.A., which opens April 22 at the Helms Design Center in Culver City (I’ve pitched it to the L.A. Weekly – wish me luck!).
With his Sun at the anaretic (“last gasp”) 29th degree of Libra, Hubbell is all about peace, beauty and balance. But he also has Mercury, Venus and Mars in Scorpio, giving him a keen appreciation for the darkness. “I think that what we’re about now,” he told me, “is trying to bring things back into balance – the rational world we understand and the intuitive world we don’t understand.” In other words, giving both the light and the dark their due. “It’s okay if there are shadows,” he insists, both in art and in life. This includes the prospect of dying. He admits to having some fear of making that transition, but says he is willing to embrace it as part of the adventure.
At the upcoming Libra Full Moon square Pluto, planet of darkness (April 16, 11:54 a.m. PDT), we may all need to face some personal or collective shadows. Pluto transits highlight what is no longer productive, giving us a chance to drop old baggage so we can move on, or at least view things from a different angle. When the Moon in peace-lover Libra opposes the Sun in fire-starter Aries (at 27 degrees), there may be a difference of opinion on what needs to change. But this lunation also trines capable Saturn in Aquarius, which brings a voice of reason to settle conflicts and help us gain a foothold on what’s next.
The Full Moon happens just after the biggest transit of the year: the Jupiter-Neptune conjunction in Pisces, which perfects on April 12. Astrologers have been weighing in for months on what this transit, which hasn’t happened in Pisces since 1856, might bring. Most agree that there is tremendous potential for spiritual inspiration – but also mass delusion and confusion. This transit demands surrender and trust in life. Jupiter is magnifying all things Neptunian, including your dreams and visions. I’ve been telling my clients that it’s like jumping on a surfboard to ride a big wave – but you’ll need focus and faith to get safely to shore. In other words, consciousness is the key to not capsizing!
At the Libra Full Moon, let’s be inspired by Jim Hubbell’s example to create more peace, beauty and connection in our lives. Jim has co-created seven parks dedicated to peace and friendship in Pacific Rim countries around the world. And, his visionary art and architecture reflect his out-of-sign conjunction of Jupiter in Leo and Neptune in Virgo. Hubbell’s passion for bringing people together with art and nature speaks to the highest possibilities of the Jupiter-Neptune transit. This is a great time to foster and celebrate our connection to art, beauty, nature and each other. For more information (and terrific photos!) on Hubbell, his upcoming one-man show in L.A. and current spring tours and classes at the Ilan Lael Center near Julian, visit https://ilanlaelfoundation.org/