Leo and Leo
Look at me!
Look at me!
Look at me!
Two Leos together constitute all the membership necessary to form a Mutual Admiration Society. The dues? Why, worship, of course. That’s worth more than money to the Big Cats.
There are, naturally, both negative and positive types born under all twelve astrological signs. But truly, I’ve never met a Leo of either type who didn’t have that splendid Leonine ability to light up a room. The vibration of Leo, ruled by the Sun itself, is almost tangible, a thing you can actually feel throughout your whole being in the presence of a Lion or Lioness. It’s undeniably relaxing to bask in such warmth, like lying on the beach with the solar rays beating down on your body, soaking up energy and bright sunshine. Really, haven’t you ever noticed the warmth blanketing you from those Leos you know—even when they’re behaving like spoiled monarchs, lecturing you on your shortcomings and bossing you around? Warm, loving, affectionate, playful cats and kittens are hard to resist. Likewise warm, loving, affectionate, playful Leos.
Almost all Leos have a mysterious and magnetic attraction to cats. One of the wisest, most noble, and deserving-of-worship Leos I know often says, wistfully, Kitties are the only good things. My own half-wild Colorado kittens peacefully and purringly allow him to trim their toenails. They would scratch out the eyes of anyone else who tried. I guess all cats understand and trust one another, whether paired in Nature’s jungle, the shed in the backyard, or in the astrology zoo.
As a team, Leos offer each other no less than they offer the rest of us—fierce protection from enemies, plus an unsurpassed loyalty and devotion. These two possess between them all the necessary qualities for an enduring friendship. In fact, friendship far beyond the ordinary definition of the word is a common trait of the Big Cats, whose symbolic feline counterparts imitate the Leonine loyalty (as well as the Leonine self-sufficiency and cool dignity). Both kinds of cats are capable of heroic sacrifice and hardship in the name of friendship, love, or a sacred trust—a sort of persistent devotion that belies their reputation for snobbish superiority complexes and domineering ways.
In the fifteenth century, a loyalist to the Lancastrian party, Sir Henry Wyatt, was condemned to prison by King Richard III. Somehow, a curious pussycat found her way into his dark, damp cell, and an intense friendship developed between the two. The man’s suffering from cold and hunger would have been unbearable but for the daily visits of his loyal friend, the cat, who brought along a morsel of food for him to eat as often as she could. Since cats are, by nature, comfort-loving creatures, an affectionate attachment to the prisoner was clearly her only motivation, Sir Henry’s cell being anything but a warm, cozy, inviting hearth. All Leos have within them the potential of such loyalty and nobility in human relationships.
Time and time again, cats have been known to risk great danger and endure extreme hardship by journeying hundreds, even thousands, of miles to be reunited with loved ones from whom they were somehow separated—and the human Leonine Big Cats are capable of the same magnitude of sacrifice and persistence in reuniting with the one once loved, however seemingly insurmountable the obstacles between them may be. Despite a certain annoying air of smugness and aloof independence, the cat is a strange and marvelous creature—both kinds. If you don’t believe me, just ask one! Leo is seldom hampered by modesty or self-effacement.
True, Leo Lions and Lionesses have other qualities not so admirable. As strong and courageous as they may be in times of trouble, they can also be insufferably arrogant and frequently blinded by false pride. Their warm natures and sunny dispositions are subject to change without notice into the sort of frozen dignity royalty assumes when a peasant dares to step out of line and criticize the King—or Queen. A Lion or Lioness will roar an angry warning to anyone who threatens to infringe upon royalty’s right to be respected and obeyed.
When these two link their lives, they’ll usually fight, pout, shout, and make up more often than any of the other 1-1 Sun Sign Patterns (except Aries). It’s a constant inward or outward battle for supremacy. They’re cozily content to purringly pal around together, they understand each other’s swollen vanities, false pride, and need to be admired. But they can’t help occasionally campaigning for the votes of the lesser animals. Alone on stage together, most of the time, they’ll consent to be equals, cementing their relationship with mutual respect. It’s when a third (or fourth, or fifth) person enters the scene that the fight for dominion and attention begins before a potential audience, which must eventually, after all, recognize just one of the Leos as the star, the other as only understudy or supporting player. This is as true of the Shy Pussycat Leos as of the more dramatic, extroverted Lions and Lionesses, the only difference being that the former emote with fewer crashes of cymbals than the latter. All Leos must be worshiped, looked up to in some degree, and one Cat cannot truly worship another without relinquishing the scepter of power. Their destinies are not to bow down, but to be bowed down to—and, yes, Leo, I know a preposition is a poor thing to end a sentence with—but that’s how it is.
Between themselves, as before an enthralled audience of outsiders, two Leos do everything in the grand manner. Should a Leo politician choose to run for governor of a state, it will usually be one of the bigger states. Leos give larger and more extravagant gifts, normally choose to drive larger cars, prefer to dine in the better restaurants, dream bigger dreams, and definitely possess more sizable egos than we commoners. When you see a Leo driving a VW Bug, you may safely assume that this particular Lion has managed to keep his power-trip and superiority complex under control. However, it’s still sleeping within, latent. Go ahead, make fun of his Bug and watch those tilted-at-the-corners cat eyes narrow in warning.
A warning to all Leos who are considering a close relationship with one another, and who will, therefore, soon be unavoidably competing for star status on the stage of family living rooms, offices, or love nests. With both of them it will be MY world of—(whatever). Unless they can find a way to compromise and share the throne, calling their mutual endeavors OUR world of—(whatever), someone may have to call out the guards. The two pronouns my and our have distinctly different meanings, and that difference may well be the deciding factor of the success or failure of any joint effort between two Lions, whether business, friendship, or love.
Leo Napoleon Bonaparte was as typical a Big Cat as ever stalked the political jungle on the planet Earth, a born monarch of all he surveyed, his arrogance and royal dignity clearly exhibited in oils by every painter who tried to capture his majestic mien on canvas. Like many Leos, he surrounded himself with yes-men, who constantly bolstered his image of himself and reaffirmed his own opinion that he could do no wrong, make no mistakes—which weakness of pride, of course, led him to his inevitable Waterloo. There was never the slightest doubt who controlled either Joséphine or France, until he overestimated his power, as all Leos are inclined to do at one time or another.
Flamboyant and dramatic in a deceptively quiet and poised, controlled, feline manner (like many a Shy Pussycat, nevertheless proud Leo you may know), Napoleon personified his Sun Sign with each act and gesture. I have been privileged to examine a collection of valuable ancient and historical treasures at the home of my friend and editor, Dr. Charles Muses, one of these being a fabulous set of four books on the subject of Egyptian culture, which Bonaparte regally commanded to be printed after his conquest of Egypt. They reflect the Leo charisma of magnificent largesse perfectly. Bound luxuriously and extravagantly in the orange-red color of the Sun, each book measures approximately three feet in width and four and a half feet in height, hardly the kind of volumes you’d want to pick up at Barnes & Noble on your lunch break and tote home on the subway in the rush hour. They probably weren’t Parisian best sellers, but they were surely GRAND and HUGE and properly IMPRESSIVE.
There’s no denying that most Lions and Lionesses are in many ways superior to those with whom they condescend to mingle. They’re intelligent, often handsome or beautiful, as they confidently toss their luxurious manes of hair, graceful in walk and bearing, romantically irresistible, kind and generous, wise and protective, courageous and noble, loyal and lovable. But they can make you feel like giving them an affectionate kick in the seat of their royal pants now and then when they’re pulling off one of their dignified, arrogant The King (or Queen) can do no wrong routines. Try to get a Leo to acknowledge a mistake. Go ahead, try—and lots of luck, Acknowledging mistakes requires humility, a virtue Leos are a little short on, to put it mildly.
The reason these two manage to get along so well together surprisingly often is really quite simple. Royalty always feels more relaxed in the company of a peer than with an inferior (other Sun Signs). They understand how it is with another Lion or Lioness. They know how to feed each other the daily minimum requirement of compliments garnished with sincerity, disdaining the use of phony flattery as of no more value than costume jewelry, compared with the rare, precious gems of true appreciation. When they can afford it, they’ll give one another diamonds, never tawdry rhinestones—hardcover first editions, never cheap, unaesthetic paperback books, just as one Leo will never insult another with the plastic imitation of flattery as a substitute for genuine respect. Their mutual loyalty and devotion will be deep and intense, for their fiery natures were designed to meet one another’s challenge and demand for worthiness. Like all true monarchs, when they must deal with those of equal nobility, two Leos normally display an inbred, instinctive grasp of the delicacy of personal protocol, sensing with unerring judgment just how far one can safely go, without crossing the line into a breach of royal etiquette. Two Leos who lose control during a rash moment, and accidentally step over this invisible line with each other, will nearly always try to find a third-party scapegoat on whom to pin the blame. It’s not a good idea to hang around the castle while a couple of Leos are declaring war on each other. After they’ve called a truce, they’re likely to toss all innocent bystanders into the dungeon for inciting the revolution—and you can be certain that being frozen by icy Leonine disapproval constitutes a painful emotional imprisonment. It’s never the Kings and Queens who start wars, didn’t you know that? It’s those misguided, rabble-rousing subjects who make all the trouble (like friends, neighbors, or relatives).
Naturally, in the inevitable struggle for supremacy, there will be frequent (sometimes deep) scars of wounded pride, mutually inflicted. They’ll occasionally roar at one another in anger, and have difficulty dividing the rulership of whatever fiefdom they control into equal parts. But the brilliant, warm, and forgiving benevolence of the ruling Sun shines through every Leo word and deed, causing in each a desire to at least pretend possession of sufficient nobility of character to be generous in victory, undaunted in defeat. Assuming their Moon Signs are not severely incompatible, these two proud people can usually harmonize their differences, however many sharp thorns they inject into each other’s paws—for Leo rules the heart, where the Kingdom of Happiness may always be found.
Leo Woman and Leo Man
George, Mrs. Darling entreated him, not so loud; the servants will hear you. Somehow they had got into the way of calling Liza the servants.
Let them, he answered recklessly. Bring in the whole world. But I refuse to allow that dog to lord it in my nursery for an hour longer.
Now really, just think about it. If a Leo man will roar in outraged dignity (or pout in wounded silence) over the humiliation of being upstaged by a dog (and he will, oh, he will!), you can imagine his reaction to the humiliation of being upstaged by a member of the so-called weaker sex. The thing about it is that…. well … but I’m getting ahead of myself. Let’s begin at the beginning.
I wonder, should I be blunt and frank? Yes, honesty is by far the best policy. So I shall be blunt and frank. The role of housewife is entirely too skimpy a part for the average Leo actress to play on life’s stage. For, as you know, or should know, it’s a metaphysical fact that All the world’s a stage,/And all the men and women merely players.
A deep esoteric truth is that you (yes, you), on a higher level of superconscious awareness, write your own play—produce, stage, and direct it—even cast yourself and all the supporting roles—then forget you did it, as the curtain rises. You—me—each of us—all Sun Signs, Leos not excluded. The only difference between average Earthlings and those mysteriously wise gurus, avatars, masters, teachers, celestials, or space people who pass among us is that the latter know they’re only on a stage. They’re aware that they’re playing precast parts in Life’s theatre, and are both saddened and amused that the other actors and actresses take each scene so seriously, ignorant of the ability each possesses to recast the entire tragedy or comedy and rewrite the last act anytime and any way he or she chooses. It’s as though the footlights had cast a spell over them, causing them to be unable to distinguish between illusion and reality—like having the power of Mike Todd or Flo Ziegfeld or David Merrick and not even realizing it. Yet, almost every Leo woman realizes, at least, that the role of housewife is not the one in which she would find the ultimate fulfillment as a woman—even though she may not yet comprehend her power over the entire production—which is probably just as well, since Leos tend to go overboard when they’re totally in command, and such a power-trip as that might really turn her head!
I know whereof I speak regarding the Lioness, you see, because I went into deep meditation last night, and contacted (on an astral level) William Shakespeare. The Bard himself, no less, confirmed my suspicion that the Lady Katharine (Kate) in The Taming of the Shrew was a Sun Sign Leo (with Moon in Aries), and also assured me that even he would never have dared to cast her in the role of ordinary hausfrau to Petruchio. (He revealed another secret too, but I’ll save that for the end of this chapter.)
Brooms and dust pans do not mix with tiaras and coronation splendour. Don’t forget that Leo contains the essence of royalty. Nor does being chained to cooking meals and washing clothes harmonize with the astrological precept that each and every Lion (and Lioness) is born free. Instinctively sensing this, with or without the benefit of a horoscope, most Lionesses are career women, well over two-thirds of them. I’m not objecting to the Leo women choosing to compete with all the predatory creatures out there in the commercial jungle. Why should I cast the first stone, what with my own career and my own active resentment of the indentured slavery of running the Bissel and canning apricots? Who wants to just stand around all day watching how fast the alfalfa sprouts grow in the Mason jar on the kitchen window sill? What kind of a challenge is that to a bright Lioness, for heaven’s sake? Besides, it probably makes them nervous to be watched. It would make me nervous to be watched while I’m sprouting.
No, I’m not objecting or criticizing, just offering a friendly astrological warning. The career bit is fine unless the Leo woman should happen to fall in love with a Leo man, called a LION. Then things could get a little sticky.
She won’t have any trouble identifying him when he comes stealthily stalking into her life—excuse me, I mean her play—and remember, she cast it herself, including HIM (hopefully in the starring role, if she’s a wise producer, writer, and director). She’ll recognize him right off, even without knowing his birthday, because he’ll have a splendid mane of hair, even more luxuriant, pampered, and well-cared-for than her own. (Peek at a picture of the head of a Nature lion and you’ll see what I mean.) He’ll be courageous, tenderly protective of her, and convinced of his own worth, regardless of whether or not the world has yet recognized it. The world soon will. The world had better! And she had better too. His smile is dazzling, his teeth dazzling white, but his purring poise hides a ferocious temper and a powerful will. He’s truly generous, warm, sunny, terribly proud, and extremely vulnerable to hurt—like attacks on his masculinity. Now we’re back to her career again.
If she happens to earn more money than he does when they first meet, he’ll laugh it off, smugly confident that his income will soon match hers—not only match it but top it. A smitten Lion, deeply and romantically in love with a beautiful, graceful, sensuous, and seductive Lioness, isn’t going to let a small matter like money interfere with wooing and conquering his chosen mate. No way. The wafting scent and hazy smoke spirals of the incense of love will throw any red-blooded Leo male into a trance of blind ecstasy. And there’s no other kind of Leo male. Other than red-blooded, I mean. But unfortunately, that small thing—money—may become a larger thing in their relationship after the first delicious taste of Oneness, when the first exciting, leaping flames of passion have burned down to the cozy coals of a quiet, intimate affection (leaping up again occasionally, of course, from time to time, but on the whole, a steadier flame of devotion, and just as inextinguishable as the leaping kind—unless you deliberately squirt it with a garden hose—things like that).
Money will only remain a small thing between them if he was right in his expectation of soon matching or topping her income, not to mention her success and/or achievements in the career jungle. But if his financial or personal career timetable is off, money will become a large thing very quickly, and with the slightest encouragement from either of them, turn into a huge thing—then into a gigantic thing—until finally, it becomes a Frankenstein Monster standing there between them, threatening to destroy their love and tear them out of each other’s arms like helpless marionettes, caught up in the strings of their mutual pride and ego. How can you flee from a monster when your heart strings are tangled?
Bluntly, if she has more money (or more of anything else) than he possesses, a heroic sacrifice must be made to save the relationship. Guess whose sacrifice? You’re right. Hers. Not his. See, you are learning your astrology, aren’t you? A Leo woman may control all other Sun Sign men, but when it comes to the male and female Leos, the Lion dominates the Lioness. That’s the way it is in Nature, and it isn’t nice to fight Mother Nature. It isn’t even practical to try. What kind of sacrifice do I mean? Well, one thing I certainly do not mean is deception—like the Lioness lying about her income or her position, then donating the half she never tells him about to the American Indian cause, or to save the Newfoundland baby seals. Not that the Indians and baby seals don’t need it, and wouldn’t appreciate it (and later the two of them might give such spreading of Light on the planet Earth serious mutual consideration, by becoming active members of Greenpeace, as befits monarchs responsible for the welfare of their subjects), but right now, the point is that any degree of dishonesty, however admirable the intention, will never salvage a Leonine relationship. It will only kill all love and respect between them.
The kind of heroic sacrifice I had in mind was for the Lioness to place their happiness above all else—to make a decision, ranging all the way from asking him to help with her work or career, then convincing him that she couldn’t be nearly as successful without his guidance (which would no doubt be true) so the money she earns would be equally divided between them—all the way up to (or down to) giving up her job or career, if it seriously keeps them geographically or emotionally apart. Just up and quitting if necessary. Flat. Like that. If she really loves him (and she will, especially if either of their Moons is in a Fire or Air Element or conjoined in the same sign), she’ll prefer holding his big, warm, protective paw, walking in the park, and snitching a few nuts from the squirrels during the lean weeks, to languishing alone in a plush penthouse, munching caviar, and wondering where the Big Cat she loves so intensely is roaming, stalking off his hurt—or more to the point, which sympathetic female siren is soothing his wounded masculine pride.
He’d like her to believe he’s having a torrid affair when she’s wounded him, just as she’d like him to believe she’s found a new lover when he’s wounded her. But nine times out of ten, they’re both alone and lonely, using only the threat of infidelity to teach each other a lesson. Leos are like that. Of course, some are actually and technically unfaithful during a painful separation from the mate, but more Lions and Lionesses are not, often finding it difficult to find another King (or Queen) worthy of sharing the throne—reluctant to dally with the peasants, yet too proud to admit to the loved one the solitude and loneliness they’re enduring.
Not all, but many of the quarrels between this man and woman will originate with a blow to his masculine ego, frequently over the jealousy incited by competition in career and/or earning ability, achievement, and so forth. Yet, the true cause is the struggle for the position of head of the pride. The Lion must win. There is no other way. Otherwise, the Leo male will sullenly pout in pathetic dejection, for all the world like Napoleon pacing back and forth on the island of Elba, and what woman can be truly happy with a bitter, grumbling pacer? Surely not a Leo woman. As we noted earlier, a Lion is born free—and to see one confined in a cage of misery because he’s lost control of the woman he loves, therefore also lost his proud and splendid confidence, is a sad sight to behold.
The man-woman-which-spouse-is-the-mouse-in-the-house thing between them may be smoothed out in any one of several different ways—if they work together and share the same interests and career—if he’s completely fulfilled in his own chosen profession—if they both retire to a chicken farm in the country and she allows him to gather and sell at least half the eggs—if she’s sincerely content to remain at home in the lair, making it cozy for him to snooze in—or possibly if they run for President (him) and Vice President (her) on a Sexual Equality ticket. That just about covers all possibilities. Well, they could both become teachers, I suppose, and take turns at night instructing and lecturing each other, under the guise of keeping up with new educational theories.
Maybe we’d better scrap that last one. They won’t have much time at night for anything but lovemaking if they’re well-adjusted and have subdued the competition tension between them. Then the physical demonstration of their love can be a warm and lovely, near-perfect experience. Both can blend sex and affection in equal parts, understanding how to give and receive sexual satisfaction without sacrificing the magic of romance. Physical union, the consummation of love’s true purpose of complete Oneness, can be a deep joy and a constant renewal of mutual devotion to a well-mated Lion and Lioness. He’ll approach sex with both gentleness and passion—and she’ll find this one moment when her instinctive jungle wisdom whispers to her exactly the right role to play, willingly submitting, allowing her man to master and conquer her with protective tenderness, which can deepen ordinary passion into ecstasy, for them both.
However, if they haven’t solved their competitive conflicts in other areas, ecstasy could turn into something closely akin to agony. A Lion who is not properly respected, whose pride has been hurt, cannot retain the image of his own masculinity, and may become sexually impotent for brief periods.
Masculine impotency begins as an emotional illness, but can progress into a serious physical affliction, painting all rainbows with the dull, grey shades of despair. Then he’ll wear the masks of icy sarcasm and cool disinterest to hide his humiliation, breaking her unsuspecting heart. In like manner, a Lioness who’s not properly worshipped and admired, whose pride has been hurt, cannot retain the image of her own femininity, and may become frigid for brief periods. Feminine frigidity, too, begins as an emotional illness, but can progress into a serious physical affliction, painting all rainbows with the same dull, grey shades of despair. Then she’ll wear the mask of arrogant willfulness, boredom, or cutting ridicule to hide her humiliation, breaking his unsuspecting heart.
Now, isn’t that a ridiculous scene for these two people to play—this man and woman who contain within their natures all the power and glory of the Sun itself, and who were born under the star of Leo, which represents Love and rules the human heart? (Especially when you realize they wrote the play themselves, and can change the script whenever they like.) The only way out of such selfish and unnecessary misery is the realization that false pride—or any kind of pride—cruelly starves love to death by imprisoning the truth which could set love free, leaving no hope for a reincarnation of happiness, only lonely ashes of old dreams. Is pride worth it? Of course not. Then why do these two hang on to it so desperately? I’ll let them answer that. Alone …. together. Facing each other honestly without dramatics—and reading the truth in each other’s eyes. Admittedly, total honesty can be humiliating, especially to Leo, but when you pit temporary humiliation against a Lifetime of loneliness, the right choice becomes clear—and sometimes the simple truth is all it takes to bring love back home where it belongs.
Incidents which trigger an emotional impasse between a normally loving and affectionate Lion and his Lioness mate could be anything from a failure to compliment one another often enough—or hastily spoken, angry words of accusation, stemming from either real or imagined incidents of disloyalty or infidelity (it matters little which, since both arouse equally painful agonies of jealousy and mistrust that leave deep scars, slow to heal)—to the same old, monotonous conflict of: her career versus his need for superior—or at least comparable—success and worldly achievement.
And that reminds me of the other secret I learned astrally, from Will Shakespeare during meditation last night—the one I promised I’d tell you at the end of this chapter, remember? Will confided to me, with a bit of persuasion, what really took place offstage following the final curtain of The Taming of the Shrew. According to Shakespeare himself, after Petruchio had succeeded in taming Kate, the Lioness (with her Moon in Aries—or vice versa, same thing), into a gentle, submissive mate, who properly admired, appreciated, respected, and obeyed him, he allowed her to accept a part-time job illuminating old books and manuscripts, a delicate and rare art. Later, after she’d passed that test, without returning to her old, domineering ways, he permitted her to design jewels for the ladies of Padua, as a full-time career. Eventually, she became quite famous and successful, which fretted her lover-husband not a whiffle or a trifle because, you see, she never again disputed his masculine rights. She always came happily skipping, on-the-double, when her Lord and Master regally commanded, Come here, and kiss me, Kate!
Once a Lion teaches his woman a lesson, she doesn’t soon forget it. Oh, didn’t I tell you? The Bard also confirmed my suspicion that Petruchio was a Leo too. Thus, poor Kate’s fate was predestined, from the beginning of act one, scene one. But all’s well that ends well—on stage or off.
|Ruled by the Sun||Ruled by Mercury|
|Symbols: Lion & Shy Pussycat||Symbol: The Virgin|
|Day Forces—Masculine||Night Forces—Feminine|