Did you know that astrology is so much more than newspaper horoscopes and prediction? Although a well-written horoscope can definitely be helpful…
Did you know astrology can be used as a way to understand social movements and what’s going on with the collective? It can even give insights into your place in those movements.
Did you know that a good astro consult can be like the equivalent of many years of psychotherapy, allowing you to dig in, get validation, understand and change patterns?
Did you know that astrology (in my humble opinion, at least) is best used as a way to craft important questions rather than a way to try to predict some concrete reality in your future? And that this distinction is imperative in empowering you to co-create your reality and claim free will?
Did you know that giving yourself permission to see yourself embedded in an interconnected and vastly magical universe is a sign of maturity and of positive movement towards living a meaningful life?
Have you been looking for a practitioner who understands these things and can guide you through the depths rather than bypassing them?
Well, I’m here (I’m queer). And I love this work. And I believe astrology is one of many tools that can help us to get past our shit so that we can rise to the urgent occasion of working our way out of the collective mess we’re in. It empowers you to participate in your life rather than handing your power over to someone else.
To that end, today (November 27, 2017) I’m offering 50% off all services booked and paid for today.
And for the next few weeks I’ll be rolling out other specials for the gifting season (though none as extreme as 50% off). If you wanna say updated about those, best to follow me on facebook and/or subscribe to my newsletter by emailing me to opt in.
(Part One, which includes specific ritual guidance, is available to my Patrons. You can support my work and get rad incentives here. )
Death. The inevitable, the unavoidable. Death stakes her claim on each of us at some point, returning us to dirt, to ash, to water, to star dust.
Death is a looming specter. She stalks, she waits. Patient. Kind? Inescapable.
Or perhaps not. Perhaps death is just a thing. That happens. In bed, perhaps. While asleep. Or in a hospital. Or quite suddenly and without preparation. Just suffering. And then life is done. Gone. Over. Complete.
Oh, to be part of a culture with more robust stories and understandings of death. Instead we exist in a world where we’re increasingly separate from understanding of death, from ways to relate to the one inevitable factor of life. Death is sterilized, commodified, pushed underneath the surface, out of sight. Stripped down in an attempt to pretend it does not affect us while we’re alive.
We become parts to be donated. Or a shell to be buried and preserved for a while. For some reason. For what reason?
Our relationships with our dead loved ones are severed, our histories erased. Even our culture’s predominant religion has stripped death of its necessary textures and landscapes, relegating the afterlife to a fluffy fantasy of an old white man in the sky.
And yet…there is a pervasiveness to death. Paradoxically, our culture is one that builds monuments to outlast our flesh suits while destroying the environment that plays home to those monuments. We increasingly rely on medicines and band-aids to make our lives last longer even as we poison the waters and airs that feed our bodies.
We are frantic to escape the unknown realms of the dead. As if they existed separate from us.
The ability to control death is the ultimate power. And so far, that power has not been mastered, although some very terrifying weaponry straight out of the hellworlds has emerged as a salve to our utter helplessness. Our powerlessness.
But what is the power that arises out of powerlessness? Ultimately, we are powerless to escape death. What force of will arises from that quandary? In a culture that perceives death as final and absolute, that focuses on legacies made of fake green paper and structures that will collapse, the quality of that will is oftentimes brute and temper tantruming, unconscious and grasping. Lost in oversimplifications of value based in an increasingly disenchanted existence.
But what if our understanding of death was different? What if rather than ultimate annihilation we were able to perceive cycles, reconnect with our ancestors both past and future, listen to the thousands of years of understanding we’d now label as reincarnational frameworks?
Would we then cycle through power dynamics with more grace and a deeper understanding of the forces at play? Would we hear the wisdom in the stories of those who came before and build upon it, even when it meant breaking it down and starting over?
Would we understand that it is never acceptable to leave the earth less healthy and vibrant than it was when we entered it? Would we remember that money is not the ultimate value or measure of worth, never as powerful as love, equity, sharing, justice and caring? Because life is fleeting, but also because it will return?
Science is even catching up. Although it uses a different language — that of DNA and genetics and physics — it is beginning to catch up to the age-old understanding that trauma is stored in the body, in our genetic material. The phobias of our grandmothers might become the phobias of our daughters. Trauma lodges in the body. Trauma also lodges in the soul, and the soul is…regenerative.
Ah, regeneration. If we are going to assign keywords to Scorpio, we can indeed use death, chaos, transformation. But there’s something else there… as the dismemberment of the underworld takes place, we are then rearranged into something new. Maybe within a lifetime, maybe over eons of time…
What would it be like to live in a regenerative culture? What is the difference between the death cult we’ve all (some of us quite unconsciously) bought into, sustainable culture, and regenerative culture?
In many ways we do exist in a regenerative culture. We regenerate horrors, traumas, wars and sexual assaults over and over and over again. We are unconsciously regenerative in our insolent denial of cycles and patterns.
So, real questions for a more positive regenerative culture: Do you want to sustain the way things are, or do you want to transform them? Do you want to stick to the same old values or reconnect over the old/new ones that harness the power of interconnection and regeneration?
There is an uncomfortable quality to this Scorpio New Moon. Are you sensing change? Crisis? Discomfort or melancholy that might be hard to get at or understand? Are you flitting from one thing to the next in active avoidance? Or brooding and moody? Are you listening to the signals your body and soul are sending about what is healthy for you now?
When we have strong Scorpio in our charts, or when Scorpio is heavy on the world stage as it is now, we’re more attuned to the undercurrents — and the ways people tend to avoid, ignore and cover up those undercurrents. When do we dig for the truth? When do we let it go?
Because it feels the deepest ripples of human experience and the parts that don’t get acknowledged, when Scorpio is emphasized we can become suspicious. We sense…something…but don’t know what it is and want to dig to get to the core. Figuring out honest intuition versus clawing that is based in a need to control the unseen and to make the unexpected obvious — because it feels like a matter of life or death — are different things.
Sometimes we just have to remember that there is no controlling the barrel of the tidal wave. There is no escaping death. Surrender has to occur at some point, and oftentimes in life it is a matter of knowing when to try to control, and when to just…let go.
It’s difficult when we have such deeply buried memories of the deepest traumas to the soul. The traumas that reside in our physical bodies and our emotional ones as well. The ones that, pushed down and avoided, begin to control the show. Memories of abandonment, betrayal, grief and loss begin to stir, and become conflated with our death fears. And so we claw, cling and attempt to control. To get away from the impending storm. From the unknown. From death.
The deaths, large and small, that have claimed us before are never the same as the deaths, large and small, that face us now. Sometimes our bodies, our relationships, our cultures, just have to die. They run their course. We have to let them go.
But we get to rebuild. Somehow. Someway. We get to dig in, find our core strength, and rise from the ashes to create something new. To regenerate.
In this new lunar cycle, the importance of being honest about what we desire is imperative. We have an incredible opportunity to dive deep and get clear about the ways the desires of our ego are in support of or in conflict with the desires of our soul. We do this through reconnection with our emotional bodies, our sexuality, our ancestors and our shadows. We do this through owning our anger and being aware of the insidious nature of projection and the ways it can form a dark and distorted mirror that reflects our inner worlds back to us.
We do this through recognizing that when we are casting blame and pointing fingers and feeling deep feelings, there is something of what we are persecuting within ourselves. And that that thing — the murder, rapist, villain within us — will always be around, but becomes less harmful and destructive when we know what its energy feels like when it is arising within us. That is true shadow work — uncovering the disowned parts of ourselves and bringing them to light so that they can be worked with consciously rather than controlling the show from far below.
So this lunar cycle, ground and center. Invoke all the elements and your helpful, healing allies and ancestors for support. Burn the old desires and all fears of survival that are keeping you from your soul. Invite in regeneration and creativity and change. Be aware of psychic poisons that are emerging — like shame and anger and rage — feel them if you can, and then set them out to sea to be healed by the constant change of the ocean of consciousness.
Scorpio gives us a chance at penetrating insight, honesty and transformation. And although its tendency towards extremity can become compulsive, it is in fact to say that we are at a life-or-death moment in our collective evolution. And there is still time to take an active role in how that death proceeds.
Friday, November 3 at 10:22PM Pacific Time we have a Full Moon. The Sun will be at 12 degrees Scorpio while the Moon is at 12 degrees Taurus.
This is the time of year when the veil is thin. We are closer to the other side as the dark descends in the Northern Hemisphere. It is the time of the witch, of casting spells and of lighting candles in honor of the ones who came before — our dearly departed and our ancestors. And perhaps it is the time of listening to their voices and their legacies.
During this season we are reminded of death. We cannot escape it, swirling around vibrantly as the light fades and the leaves turn blood red and fall. But even absent those drastic changes, we are attuned to seasonal cycles in our marrow and in our bones. Our souls know. Our witchy DNA remembers: this life is fleeting and will come to an end amidst larger cycles we don’t always understand.
The Taurus-Scorpio axis is associated with life and death. It’s a polarity of extremes, and can therefore often trigger intense emotion, transformation and chaos. It can remind us of our primary fears, many of which are rooted in our fear of death. The shadow of this fear haunts us always whether conscious or not.
What does it look like to have our Scorpio-style karma and patterns triggered? We externalize our power. We become compulsively addicted to chaos and transformation. In Scorpio, the codependency formed in Libra becomes a fixation, a bond that we will not release no matter what happens — until death. We will not release it because of fear of death. Fear loss, or that we will die from grief. We hang on out of fear of facing ourselves, and because all of our past abandonments and betrayals still ripple around us, reminding our energy bodies of the pain of loving and then losing.
Even then, after we die, sometimes it is only our bodies that let go. Compulsion takes a stronghold on the soul as we fixate on the Other as if they were the ultimate source of meaning, beyond the grave and into the next adventure. We elevate the one who we’ve mistakenly come to associate with our power. Without them…we die. Or we believe we will.
In shadow Taurus, then, we retreat inside. We isolate, we hunker down and shut out the world. As a matter of survival. As a way to avoid and ignore. We get stuck. We lose sight of larger truths. We see in black and white.
Alas, these energies provide the medicine as well.
The Sun in Scorpio shines brightest when it is digging deep, with its acute ability for psychological understanding and therefore transformation. It is the leading force in our evolution, and it is only through the emotional body that we’re able to truly transform old patterns and move on to new ones.
In Scorpio, we learn more about who we are and are not through coming up against our limitations and then trying to push through them. Through meeting and merging with another and fumbling around in the touches. Through going through the portal of death and recognizing the fertile regeneration that lies on the other side.
We need Taurus for that work. Taurus holds the secret to withstanding the torrents of the Scorpio tidal wave. The Moon in Taurus is said to be in its exaltation. The Moon tells us about what we need to feel secure, and Taurus is all about security. In Taurus, we reclaim our sovereignty. We go back to the roots of the Venusian archetype, which gets too mottled and externalized in Libra, so that we can remember that in order to truly love another we must first love our own selves. We must find our resources within and come to terms with what we value so that we can base all that we do in there, building self-worth from the inside out.
We also come back home in Taurus, back into our bodies. Where Scorpio is all about sexuality, Taurus is about sensuality. The feeling of coconut oil being rubbed into shoulders and feet, the smell of roses, the taste of chocolate and wine. The sound of a guitar being played by a person sitting in the grass underneath a tree. Taurus is slowed down simplicity, deep breathing and fully embodied, heavy and blissful peace.
Yes, it’s far easier to feel emotionally secure and willing to stand our ground from a place of solid and stable inner power when we get Taurus right.
Witches know the importance of Scorpio and of fearlessness facing the dark as we plunge through cycles of transformation and chaos. But more than that, they know that in order to actualize the desires of the soul, as represented by Scorpio, we must do it from a place of embodied personal power. Our root chakra must be open and strong so that our roots can grow deep.
Here we recognize that we must commit to existence in a vessel made of flesh and bone. That will die. Even if our essence does not.
So for this Full Moon – what’s been pushing you into chaos? What’s the most simple remedy you can think of? In what areas of your life are you just waiting until it ‘hurts enough’ to choose to change, and why are you playing it that way (and don’t worry, we all do that for reasons I’ll never understand — myself included!). Where have you made an external thing, or person, or way of knowing more powerful than your own core — and how can you let that go? Where has codependency become destructive fixation?
You’re supported now in using your voice, in casting your spells, in enjoying some rich and sensuous sex magic (alone or with others) and in some deep, belly laughs right smack dab in the face of death.
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Seems to be some serious releasing going on out there, and Mercury’s doing their job of bringing deep truths to light while they flit through Scorpio, so… it’s apparently one of those lunar cycles where I’ll be writing each week just to check in.
Today, right about the time I publish this piece, we’ll be at the first quarter of the current cycle. The quarter moon’s are often referred to as crises in action. They are adjustment points that occur one and three weeks after the New Moon.
The energy of this first quarter moon is ripe. Maybe not for everyone, but if you’re someone who’s drawn to this particular piece of writing, or who works with me on the reg, I’m guessing you’re experiencing it in that way. The question is: can you locate yourself in the current transformation, recognizing that it is temporary and that if you’re getting tossed around something important is trying to rise to the surface? Can you make room for whatever that is?
Currently, we have the Moon in Aquarius and the Sun in Scorpio. These two signs exist in tension with one another, but it’s not the balancing tension of an opposition (like Aquarius and Leo or Scorpio and Taurus). Often these energies feel like they’re working at cross purposes with each other, like they can’t be reconciled. The Sun in Scorpio, being super amped by Jupiter, is saying “Evolve! Change! Go into and through the transformation! Feel your emotions deeply! Face the chaos of the dark!” and the Moon in Aquarius is urging detachment, objectivity, perspective and logic.
The combination of Scorpio and Aquarius happens to be one of my personal favorites. Remember, all aspects are about integration — all seemingly conflicting life situations are asking us to find the middle ground, the third thing in the tension of the opposites. Ideally speaking, we can feel deeply and go into and through transformation with emotional honesty and self-reliance. Then, we can emerge and use that logic function to process and make meaning and figure out what was going on there.
Because this lunar cycle started with the Libra-Aries axis and lots of Uranian energy, we know that the themes of the NOW have to do with the interplays between relationship and individual autonomy along with a need to liberate from the patterns within those areas of life that are keeping us from authentic self expression. Adding Scorpio into the mix (so much Scorpio!) to me speaks of deepening awareness of our truths when it comes to our most intimate relationships.
Remembering, of course, that ultimately speaking your most intimate relationship is the one you have with yourself.
So I guess that goes to say: if you’re experiencing deep emotion right now, you’re right on track. If you’re experiencing deep emotion in regards to your relationships, you’re right on track. But there are other themes that seem to be arising — what is your relationship to your own truth at the deepest possible levels? What are your beliefs about death — of body, of relationship, of life cycle, of material things?
What needs to die so that whatever was seeded at last week’s New Moon can come to fruition?
If I had to whittle down the root cause of the sickness of our culture, I’d say it all boils down to a refusal to face the reality of death. One of the blessings of the year-long Jupiter in Scorpio transit we’ve just entered is that it will very likely force the issue of understanding our cultural beliefs around death. That work starts with each individual at the personal level.
There’s another piece to this story that has to do with the placement of the Lunar Nodes in Aquarius and Leo right now. We as a species are currently working through a whole heck of a lot of collective karma. The basic wisdom behind this transit is asking us to heal the places where trauma has caused us to flee or freeze, to shut down and go somewhere else. That’s the shadow of Aquarius. We’re facing a collective liberation into the heart — that’s the Leo medicine. We’re unfreezing.
Here’s the thing — coming into the heart is in fact a beautiful thing. What we don’t tend to talk about, however, is how painful a process it can be. When your heart is shut down for years (or millennia), its awakening can feel brutal. Scary. Overwhelming.
So if trauma triggers are coming up for you now, they’re most likely rolling through in big waves of Scorpio intensity. The Aquarian piece here is asking for objectivity, yes, but without automatic dissociation. It’s asking us to go through the emotion, yes, but to try to avoid getting stuck there. Feel the feelings, and then let them go. Tap back into the bigger picture. Which is, in another oversimplified statement: Returning to the heart for the sake of healing the world.
Really. It’s true!
And it’s worth revisiting that Lilith-ian stuff from my New Moon article. There’s a lot of rage arising for many folks, too! Rage that can lead to big time grief. Anger sometimes keeps us sane when the grief gets too big. So be gentle with yourself when you can, please and thank you.
Suggestions for help with intensity if you’re feeling it? Deep breaths. Lots of water. Grounding stones like fluorite or obsidian (Obsidian is an incredible stone to work with right now because she’s super helpful with softening volcanic emotion). Go to a store that has essential oils and have a sniff around to see what makes you feel better. Be honest with yourself about what you need.
Ask the universe for help being guided to the truths that are trying to emerge now, and listen to your heart as well as you can.
And another thing, just on that relationship front. Mercury is also in Scorpio, urging deep and direct conversations. You still have some time to work with this energy, so if you’re super emotional now it is A-OK to wait until that’s settled a bit. But if you wanna go deep…well, you’re well supported in those efforts.
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Lovely ideas, aren’t they? Tranquility. Quiet. Calm.
Have you been finding much of that the past few days? Honest question. You might have been! As an inner state amidst chaos? As an outer state while storms rage inside? What about at this moment? How do you feel deep down at your core? Take a deep breath or two and tune in for a second.
Hypothetically speaking, if we just take a Libra New Moon at face value, we might say the focus is on peace, equilibrium, diplomacy, balance… seeing the other side… relationships… beauty. But this is no ordinary Libra New Moon (side note: is anything ordinary these days?). This New Moon takes place directly opposite Uranus in Aries. It takes place amidst a sea of change as several planets make the shift from Libra to Scorpio, preparing us to once again plumb our depths. More.
It also takes place as a body known in astrology as Black Moon Lilith conjuncts the Galactic Center.
Whoa. That last bit sounds far out, doesn’t it? Lilith is no meek energy. And the Galactic Center is home to a supermassive black hole at the center of our galaxy. Lilith seems to be shouting into the hearts and loins of us all, as her eons of rage burst at the seams. Right into a supermassive black hole — a body which sucks everything in, destroying it, while also potentially being the source of unimaginable creation.
Lilith, now considered a ‘dark’ goddess, has come to be feared as a destroyer, a temptress who seduced men in order to breed demons from their sperm. In all actuality, very little is known of this figure. Demetra George’s Mysteries of the Dark Moon is a great place to start.
The most complete mythology we have for Lilith places her as a handmaiden to Innana. She was guardian of sexual mysteries and helped to initiate men into adult sexuality, and a temple priestess. Still no meek figure by any stretch of the imagination, but no demon either.
For our purposes, what might be helpful to understand here is that mythologically speaking Lilith was also the ‘original woman.’ She was the first wife of Adam, and she was ultimately banished from the garden (yeah, that garden) because she would not submit. She wanted to be on top. Not always, but you know…some of the time. She initially came to Adam to offer wisdom and commitment to equal partnership.
Adam wanted subservience. So, in short, Lilith was cast right the heck out of the garden. And like so many other ‘dark’ goddesses, her stories were distorted and she took on the image of a winged and wild-haired she demon who flew through the night. She became another repository for all the shadows of the patriarchy. Where she once represented the strength and power that arises through primal, instinctive sexuality, she was denied, rejected and vilified for those same reasons.
She would not cooperate in her own victimization or any religion that forced subservience, and was therefore punished.
But Lilith is a mythological figure. Her punishment is metaphorical. It is the real, flesh and bone bodies of humans today who have carried the weight of this distorted mythology. Black Moon Lilith in the natal chart is said to represent an area where we have repressed something about our own feminine nature, no matter our gender expression or identity.
Again, there’s this image in my mind — of this writhing, winged goddess, smoldering and raging, screaming into the swirling cauldron of a black hole she never once thought to fear: “NO MORE. Our bodies are your domain NO MORE. We will stand for this no longer, and we do not give one flying fuck what discomfort it causes. We will rise, and you will learn the power of the sovereign body, naked and powerful…”
But she has the wisdom to know that the black hole will not consume her message, but instead broadcast it out for all to receive.
It came forward this week in the form of a hash tag: #metoo. In more discussions about rape culture. In the reactions of those who had their eyes opened, and those who shut down even further. In Lindy West’s article, Yes This is a Witch Hunt. I’m a Witch and I’m Hunting You. And this piece as well .
This brings us to Libra.
The power of Libra does lie in its ability to extend to the other. To listen, to receive, to keep the peace, to work things out. To stand for Justice. But justice cannot happen without fire and initiative to back it up. That’s the Aries polarity.
Libra’s shadow is, in a word, subservience. It is placation in order to keep the peace. Surrender of self in order to play the role others need played. Inertia and indecisiveness. Niceness. Folks with lots of Libra karma often have lifetimes of …
…well, sometimes just being women. Being sold (otherwise known as “married”) off and told who to be and how to act. Internalizing the message that our bodies are sinful and disgusting and that we are in fact the lesser sex. Playing the role, losing our center, putting on the mask.
For this New Moon, Uranus in Aries is thrusting for liberation from that conditioning. It is giving us the opportunity to rebel from subservience that keeps us from authentic self-expression, in whatever ways it shows up in our lives. In all of our lives, no matter our gender expression or body.
The energy of Lilith and the energy of Uranus resonate with each other in that they carry the mark of the exile, accepting insecurity, loneliness and exclusion from society rather than be anything other than what they truly are. These two bodies form a sextile aspect for this lunation, helping to synthesize, supporting each other. Saturn is in the mix for a little bit of restraint and containment for so much fiery energy. These aspects are fertile ground for setting an intention to cut the ties that are holding us back and to free ourselves from what keeps us permanently exiled from ourselves.
It’s not straightforward. Nor is this easy subject matter to unpack. The thing is, right or wrong, feminine energy has been demonized for thousands of years. Although it is definitely rising, it is full of rage and it’s not as easy as saying “this rage is righteous, let’s burn it all down.” We have to find balance — and balance is not a static thing. It is a fluid process. Bringing shadows out of the dark takes conscious effort and energy.
We get to learn how to harness the energy of the dark goddess again. This is why witches are rising. They know. They have the courage to access the systems that guide this work.
So today, and through the coming weeks, the time has come to ask yourself: What is arising within me now? Where have I been cooperating in my own victimization and the victimization of others? How does my sexuality fit into my relationships? Where and how do I need to demand equality?
Where have I been choosing security over authentic self-expression? Where am I too adaptable, and where am I too rigid? In what ways do I enable a culture that allows for enforced and institutionalized subservience? Where does rage lie within me and how can I use it consciously?
What ways has my body held all of this and what are my tools for reclaiming my body — for there is no sovereignty or presence without embodiment.
Who is in all of this with me? Who are my partners, friends, co-dreamers and co-creators who support my individual essence? And how can I listen to them more deeply, witness their pain and mine more fully, and then let it go?
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You know, any good, responsible astrologer studies charts when writing about astrological events. I can be a good, responsible astrologer sometimes. But I can also be a “I don’t care so much what the map is saying because my heart knows truth in this moment” astrologer. Luckily, the two tend to blend well.
You see, although the Full Moon on Thursday, October 5 takes place on the Libra-Aries axis (Sun in Libra, Moon in Aries) everything I’m feeling now is so Pisces to me. Transcendent love, bliss, pseudo-ecstasy. Letting go, surrendering, feeling the heartbreak of truth that destroys hope, choosing hope anyway, laughing at any attempt to make meaning when realizing that we exist somehow held down on a giant rock that is spinning while hurtling through space at more miles an hour than I can even comprehend. Leaning into the chaos with a strong sense of grounding (there’s the Virgo polarity for ya there).
Now, rationally speaking I can in fact look at charts to understand this. I’m writing this as the Moon is drifting through the closing notes of Pisces, rubbing up against my own natal Venus in Pisces. That spot has gotten a lot of action over the past year in terms of transits and progressions in my personal chart. I’ve been led into deep existential despair, out into the light again, back into the depths. It’s helped me to reform the way I love self and others and the way I move into my path professionally and personally.
These late mutable sign degrees of the zodiac have also been central in a run-in with cancer that has taught me more than I can say and that has ultimately brought me into deep contact with divine love — and to me, Pisces at it’s best is in fact divine, absolute, all encompassing Love.
But this degree of the zodiac has collective relevance, too. You see, this lunar cycle started with a New Moon in Virgo, which was opposite Chiron in Pisces. Just one degree off of that same spot the Moon currently inhabits. So those Piscean themes are coming to full bloom right now, even with the sign change. It feels like the healing of old wounds to me.
Oh, and? Being as this Full Moon is ruled by Venus (ruling planet of Libra) and Mars (ruling planet of Aries), we are immediately referred to the fact that Venus and Mars are together in the sky right now. Opposing Neptune in Pisces.
See? It’s all there. In the charts. Er…the stars.
But maybe that just sounds like a bunch of astrologese to you. So let me do my best to translate now.
For a Full Moon it’s always best to just simply look back two weeks at what was being planted at the New Moon. What’s coming to fruition for you now? Something small, perhaps. Or…can you feel the magnitude of the times we’re living in and the immense tragedies swarming us daily? The day or two before the Full Moon are times to feel whatever that is for you building inside, in preparation for release. Reflect and meditate. Take some deep breaths.
And then there’s the astrology of it. How can that be helpful? It’s all about context.
Now, I have to be honest with you for a second. I have to give the big giant disclaimer that so many of my thoughts are still bouncing back to that eclipse in August. I’m still kinda stuck there in some ways, trying to figure out what the hell happened. That thing rocked my/the world. The biggest theme that keeps calling me from that Leo-Aquarian time is the importance of community (Aquarius) — and of taking care of individuals (Leo) within communities. Taking care of each other.
Still relevant. With what’s happening in Houston. Puerto Rico. Las Vegas. We have to take care of each other. We have to solidify our communities and look out for out for those who are struggling in whatever way when we can. It is clear that those in power are not going to do this.
We have to take care of each other in our local communities. And then…well, then we have to add in our global communities. Then we have to add in Syria, Yemen…and on, and on…
Last night I attended a benefit concert that raised money for refugees. Did you know there are 65 million refugees in the world? 65 million people without a home. Who are having to start over. Take that up a notch — 65 million people, many of whom have experienced intense trauma and are now displaced and often facing the erasure of their lifestyles, families and traditions.
The heartache knows no bounds. The sorrow. The despair. That’s Pisces.
At the concert, one of the loves of my life (that would be Dave Matthews) sang a song with this lyric:
Love is not a whisper or a weakness
No, love is strong
So we’ve got to get together
Til there is no reason to fight
Forgive me for what might be sappiness, but there it is: the Libra and the Aries. Because, you see, Aries is all about the individual, and it is associated with total raw instinct. That raw instinct is linked to our personal defense, including our flight or fight response. It is linked with strength. And with fighting.
Libra is our first jaunt into interpersonal relationships. We come forward saying…ok, now I know who I am and I know how I can help, so now I want to dance with you. I want to know who you are. I want to help and love and learn. I want to listen.
In its highest form, that desire for interaction and interpersonal exchange — that ability to listen — is what diffuses harmful Aries instinct to fight for the sake of fighting, or to choose violence as reactionary instinct — and transforms it into right leadership. This is why the Emperor card in the tarot is ruled by Aries. It is the leader who has been to war, who knows the perils of battle, and who has matured with his vulnerability in tact and a deep knowing that although courage and strength are necessary qualities, war should always be the very last option. This leader knows that if, heavens forbid, he has to choose war, it will be with constant connection to the soul-level costs of it. Balance, deep listening, compromise, strength.
The Libra-Aries axis takes several of the themes of Aquarius-Leo, but strips them down a notch. Rather than focusing on the larger community, it’s focusing on more interpersonal, one-on-one style relationships.
Maybe for you the meditation for this Full Moon, then, is…where are you right now in terms of those kinds of relationships? Who are the people in your immediate romantic, friendly and professional circles? Does anything need to be honored there? Let go of? Focused on? How’s the balance? Are your needs being met?
Let’s focus it further. I mentioned above that the rulers of this lunation — Mars and Venus — are currently conjunct in Virgo. They’re nuzzling up against each other in what feels to me like a happy reunion, saying, “Love is not a whisper or a weakness, yo. Love is STRONG. Remember? So how can we get it together? And how can we get together? Yeah.”
To me, this pairing feels like a potential for purification. Of desires. Of values. But then add in the opposition to Neptune in Pisces, and… there’s some surrender there, too. Which is an important component of purification. But it’s also a surrender of anything hovering around that is keeping us from being the very best versions of ourselves so that we can go forward into our relationships and say “hey! This is me, in my most pure form! And I have some ideas about what we can do here. And I’m really excited to listen to yours, too!”
Of course, “purification” has become a term that’s somewhat loaded in a society that’s been broken down by the sins of the father and other fucked up Judeo-Christian programming. So just know that those words above are mean in an everything-is-perfect-in-its-imperfection way. Cuz the world can’t wait for us to attain some brand of perfection defined by external authorities. The time to step into our power is now. With balance, with reverence, with confidence and with strength — and with a real penchant for that deep listening and witnessing that helps to build bonds and understanding, even when we don’t agree.
And see, here’s the other thing about this Full Moon — it takes place with the Moon right up next to Uranus. The liberator. The energy that tries to shake us out of what’s not working. Unfortunately, that kind of shaking and shock doesn’t always feel great, especially when we’re resisting change. But, we use astrology so that we can see these things and understand them and participate more fully and consciously in our lives. So…perhaps another meditation for you is this: what does freedom look like to you? What does it feel like? Where is it present in your life and where is it missing? Do you want more of it? How can that happen?
Big, fiery Aries love and Libra beauty to you…
Full Moon in Aries is exact on Thursday, October 5 at 10:40am.
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Still there? Things simmered down yet? Are you among those still trying to get their footing after eclipse season?
I’m not one for over-dramatized astrological borderline hysteria (or even flat out hysteria), but um… that eclipse window lived up to its reputation and then some, at least in my corner of the world. Hurricanes and flooding and fire and unbreathable air and.. Oh, and threat of nuclear annihilation.
Wow. What just happened? If only those were just metaphors.
Personally, I had to take the month off from writing as things spiraled out in my life in the form of a big ol’ health crisis. Coming back to write for the first time for the Virgo New Moon feels grounding. But it also feels forced. And like it’s missing the point. Because I haven’t yet begun to really process what went on as I just deal with my new physical reality — major surgery equals major recovery and downtime. Yet I’m just not interested in sharing my own process just yet, which tends to affect my writing for the worse.
I want this writing to be meaningful. I want it to hit all the right spots. I want it to strike my heart, and flow through me and into you and be just what I need and you need and…well, I want it to be perfect.
Ah, that’s Virgo.
Virgo longs so much for perfection and usefulness and to be of service. It is the process of learning through analysis and then taking what is learned and making something of it. It is practical and orderly.
Virgo teaches us humility — hopefully through humbling experiences rather than humiliating ones. It is also associated with purification, although in our culture again this very innocent concept gets distorted into sado-masochistic patterns and martyr complexes. Through the humbling experiences or the humiliating ones, we tend to find our place in the world with reverence for the bigger picture and larger forces at play. We recognize the connection between the microcosm and the macrocosm (that’s the Virgo-Pisces axis).
In its shadow forms, Virgo gets caught up in the process of analysis and forgets that the analysis exists to serve a goal. It’s where we forget the end game and get lost in loop after loop of analysis for the sake of analysis and end up depressed and anxious.
I stumbled across an article the other day that speaks to some very Virgoan themes. It discusses the “right way” to be introspective and suggests that although we’ve started claiming that those with higher self awareness are happier, or that excessive introspection is a means to somehow better consciousness, studies actually show that people who score high on self-reflection are actually more stressed, anxious and depressed.
Shit! There goes my whole take on self-awareness.
Not really, though. I’ll let you read the article for yourself, but it makes some important observations about the ways we engage introspection. It makes sense. But what I really loved about the article is that it offers suggestions about how to work with introspection to get to helpful insights without engaging the parts that lead to brooding and anxiety — which is so practical! A Virgo article through and through.
It suggests that instead of asking ourselves why?, we ask ourselves what?
But it can be helpful sometimes to understand the why. Why is Virgo so crisis-oriented? Looking at astrology as a developmental wheel, we spend the first five signs (Aries, Taurus, Gemini, Cancer, Leo) focused on ourselves and the formation of our identity and how to express who we are. That’s almost half of the stages of the zodiac.
And then in one sign, in one developmental stage, we transition from that inward focus to relating with others in Libra and Scorpio. That’s a lot of pressure!
Virgo is therefore associated with crisis (and the inconjunct or quincunx aspect in astrology). Crisis tends to focus things, creating a pressure cooker. Virgo brings focus. Virgo is the sparkle of a celestial mystery, starlight harnessed — focused — into fleshy form. Virgo is where we move from “How can I be special” to “How can I be useful”? It is the bridge between the personal and the interpersonal.
Virgo is so uptight because it just wants things to be really, really good. When things are really, really good they’re also really, really useful. Virgo totally gets off on the practicality of that exchange. Tangible results.
Virgo’s penchant for analysis and understanding how to do right are also blessings. Virgo is an earth sign, and so with this energy we learn practicality. We learn how to inhabit our bodies as vessels of service, and how to make use of the tools we have and excel at.
The difficulty with striving for perfection with so much integrity and longing is, of course, that perfection is unobtainable and is radically dependent on moralities, ethics and ideals that are constructed by society, personal preference and whole host of external and totally ambiguous variables.
It’s through Virgo’s polarity of Pisces, then, that we remember… we remember the perfection of the now, the importance of compassion and unconditional love, and the freedom that comes from just letting it all go. We remember that there is perfection in every moment. Wherever we find ourselves in each moment is exactly where we are supposed to be.
The thing is that for this New Moon, we have Mercury, Mars and Venus all in Virgo as well. My experience so far says this combination is a blessing. It’s bringing the opportunity for some grounded clarity after the firestorm of eclipse season, although it might be more nonlinear than Virgo would typically prefer, thanks to Neptune’s place opposite Mercury.
So, in short, we might be best served by simplifying things for this lunar cycle — picking the pieces up, one by one.
This New Moon is a stepping stone as we head towards a new season (marked by the equinox on September 22 and the Sun’s entrance into Libra). How can you take what’s happened in your life this past summer, and especially in the last month, and begin to break it down into increments in order to understand it better?
How can you focus on the whats more than the whys? What went on? What did you experience? What are you feeling about it now? What are you going to do with what you’ve learned?
Now, because this New Moon involves Chiron, it might be helpful to keep a look out for what wounds are ready to go or just be aware of what wounds are coming up. They might be aching or pumping, rising to awareness in the time just before the New Moon, or they might arise in the next month. In particular, pay attention to areas you might feel inadequate, like an imposter, or become extra critical of yourself.
As wounds near their release point, they can tend to amp up a bit so remember the Pisces medicine: love, compassion and more love and more compassion – extended inward towards yourself first, and then back out again. Acceptance is the key to healing Chiron’s wounds — these parts will never go away, but they can be acknowledged, loved and integrated.
New Moon exact at 10:29pm Pacific Time, September 19
27-28 degrees Virgo, Opposite Chiron
For an article on how to create a New Moon ritual, visit this page.
Advice for ritual: For this Virgo New Moon, set realistic expectations. Use the energy to anchor yourself in something that needs to be done, even if it’s a tiny thing (i.e.; I will take three deep breaths in and out when I wake up each morning rather than reaching straight for my phone). If you’re feeling bowled over by life, sick, recovering or just unable to go big this month, be easy on yourself.
It might also be helpful to note that Virgo is often associated with health and wellness. Very literally speaking, we ground through the body and its strength is important to our journey here. Simply intending to pay attention to health and body a little more, making changes in diet or activity, creating salt scrubs or even treating yourself to body work during this cycle are all practical methods of coming back into the present and caring for yourself a little more.
More specific New Moon guidance, including ritual preparation is available for Patrons at the $10+ levels. Want monthly guidance while also supporting my ability to continue doing this work? Check it out and sign up here.
One thing I will say: That Full Moon eclipse on Monday was a pretty special experience for many folks. And by “special” I mean it did exactly what we’re told lunar eclipses do: amp emotionality waaaaay the fuck up. Kick women’s menstrual cycles into overdrive and jumpstart. Plunge us into processing and shadow work and a whole heckuva lotta triggers whether we wanna be there or not — and for many people that’s particularly tough because they don’t quite have the tools to deal with what’s going on.
Here we are, my friends. The lunar cycle which sets off summer eclipse season. A gateway. A portal. A chance.
What’s arising within you now? What is it you’re longing for, down to the tips of your toes? Not clear yet? Perhaps set your intention with this New Moon to uncover it. And then plant the seed at the next New Moon — also in Leo — with the fiery, total solar eclipse on August 21.
Transformational processes are arising constantly, aren’t they? And yet, somehow, this one feels different. Leaders being called forth, tribes constellating and converging… echoes of the past coming forward to say: what have you learned? What can you do differently? How can you nurture your own spark of genius and bring it forward in celebration — because the world needs you now.
This New Moon can go in so many different directions. Maybe you know exactly where you want to be. Use it, then, to make plans. But perhaps it’s not that concrete for you yet? In which case I’ll say…
Love yourself. Fiercely. Make it a devotional practice. Learn the ins and outs of your loves, wants, needs, expressions and desires. Go into the dark, shadowy places and bring to light all that you are. Love yourself — all of you — into reality and then take the reins and make shit happen.
This new moon does offer us a gateway, harnessing the fiery energies of the Sun and Mars. The resulting combustion can be used consciously to fuel the creation of our desires in the material world. But the core of this work requires a unified will. The cultivation of a unified will requires bravery, honesty and unadulterated yet finely honed expression and creativity.
This is not easy work. Not for the feint of heart — although I dare say engaging it will indeed increase your heart’s strength. But because it is not easy, and because what we find in this process so often makes us feel our difference more acutely (that’s the Aquarian polarity), it is so very important to seek out others on this path as well. Communities of outsiders. Witches. Queers. Seemingly ordinary folks with a penchant for occult studies or crystals or some other kind of woo. Those who are grappling with deconditioning themselves from the landslides of crimes against our natures that have been perpetuated for millennia now in order to create a vast infrastructure of lies and repression that we now dare to call ‘normal.’
The Aquarius-Leo axis invites to the process of individuation. This is not the call to be more unique, special or individual. This is where we hear the call of our soul and answer. Finally. Often because we no longer have a choice. And yet…we choose. The path of the heart in all its tangents and backslides, rather than the path that has been laid out for us without care for our true nature.
We need — we must have — radical transformation. The kind that makes us twist and turn, but the kind that also then allows us to bask in the sun more fully, more wholly. Fully naked rather than cloaked in suits and scrubs — no matter how designer or cute or half-off they might be.
And yet there are pitfalls here. Drama. Narcissism. Inflation. Be aware of them. And if you dip into that energy, accept yourself anyway. Correct. Change course. Learn.
Use this New Moon to ground and center yourself. Use it to tap into your heart and listen to what your own spark of life and truth is calling out for you to do now. The heart is a window into the soul, the soul is a magnet for magic, and magic is a truth that all of us know is real but have forgotten how to use. It’s time to remember. To play. To bask. To love.
This is your call to action.
Take a look around — there are others answering it with you.
Leo New Moon exact Sunday, July 23 at 2:46am
0+ degrees Leo, conjunct Mars at 1+ degree Leo
To view an hour long webinar about Creating Your Own New Moon Ritual (with specific guidance for this New Moon) click here.
More specific New Moon guidance, including ritual preparation is available for Patrons at the $10+ levels. Want monthly guidance while also supporting my ability to continue doing this work? Check it out and sign up here.