Lunar Eclipse: As Within so Without

Sunday at 10:47PM Eastern time, there will be a full Lunar Eclipse visible in the sky. The moon will be at 5 degrees Aries and the Sun at 5 degrees Libra. This Lunar Eclipse is revealing the outcome of the Solar Eclipse we experienced two weeks ago. However while the new moon began in Virgo, this full moon takes place in Libra/Aries. The extent to which we allow ourselves to examine our flaws and discover the divinity within the cracks of imperfection, has a part to play in the influence of this Lunar Eclipse. Simply put, this axis is about self versus other, the extent we act for self preservation and caring for our own needs, and highlighting our ability to meet another person and see in their desires, our own forgotten ones. The sun in Libra is illuminating the importance of developing fairness in relationship, the compromise of give and take, even the inner struggle of contradictions. Finding a place for opposites to co-exist in balanced harmony.

A time the moon has the most light, it will become dark, the earth will be between these luminaries and we will be in the center of this opposition, momentarily cutting the light of the sun off from the moon. Our habitual ways of letting our life force make its thrust outward, will be examined in the light of the ways that can stifle someone else’s self expression. To allow frustration of feeling impeded, allow us to not see that conflict arises when both parties are not getting what they need. To find a way of fighting for your own needs that doesn’t trample others needs, but includes them. A more encompassing development of selfhood that includes our opposites, be it people or bits of ourselves that we deem flawed and unacceptable for society.

Each degree of the Zodiac has a Sabian Symbol, an image that describes the quality of that degree. The moon is at 5 degrees Aries and the symbol is “A triangle with wings”. Quite a fitting image for a Lunar Eclipse. This image is revealing an added complexity to the normal contradictions and unification of opposites. By revealing a third element that transcends contradictions, allows us to witness the duality of self/other, from outside of our immediate experience of it. In this eclipse, the earth is standing in-between the sun and the moon, becoming the third element, point on the triangle, so to speak, that shows our very human capacity to find improbable solutions to seemingly impossible problems, to come to the irrational discovery of truly asserting “ourselves” back into the equation of human interactions, in order to lift us up into more fully developed beautiful relationships. We are getting a glimpse of how the opposition of self and other, within and without, are really reflections of one another. The harmony will come when we are able to glimpse the ways in which we deny others anger in fear of our own, discovering that balance ultimately comes, not from depending on people to fulfill our every desire, but from allowing ourselves to witness and accept our own self contradictions, thus awakening our inner unity. Higher self does not mean better self, but a self that realizes how we relate to people is truly a mirror of our own inner dynamics and owning all the parts of ourselves is what will allow us to truly fly.

Saturn in Sagittarius: Chains of Freedom

Saturn moved into Sagittarius on the 18th of September, finally leaving Scorpio’s domain where it had been residing for most of the past 3 years. This summer has been filled with our fears, their ghosts let out into our world, to destroy our past in order to move forward, cutting away old relationships, outdated modes of being. Even though this Summer has been quite painful and difficult, the grief of losing what we thought we couldn’t live without, a process like a snake shedding skin, has cleared the way to take a new direction into the future. With our luggage discarded, we have the momentum and freedom to carry forward into new themes. These next two years will contain the themes of hard lessons around how we curtail our freedom, and how our fear of being tied down, contain its own chains. Through trial and error we will discover how to bring an adventurous spirit back into our lives. We will find new meaning. Instead of containing visions for our future in our minds, living our visions in our head, wishing the future were here now; we will discover that doing the real work of manifesting our dreams now, of slowly bringing the desired change and expansive living into our lives, will allow us to align with our goals in a reality based way. This time will cut away at the limits of our fantasies, of what we are actually capable of creating, ensuring that our ideals remain based in reality and really focusing ourselves on the dreams that are actually able to come into fruition. But this process won’t be easy, we will be asked to let some dreams go, and it will feel like some are forcefully ripped away from us. But the cold harshness of what we are capable of accomplishing on this earth, will finally allow us to see what dreams we can truly bring alive.

Saturn is our teacher, the kind that shows us what we would rather not see, that forces us out of denial, unveiling what is real and what is outdated. He guards the threshold of any kind of lasting change. We must go through him in order to fully experience this transition. He shows us our fear of change, and in order to gain his delicious fruits of accomplishment, we must face that fear. We tend to fear Saturn because we have forgotten the natural place of death in our lives, we fear him because we externalize him through our parents, leaders, teachers, laws, regulations, societal dictates, and we forget that ultimately we are responsible for our own lives, we are our own authority and the decisions we make are ours.

Saturn is usually seen as a problem, a place of lack in our lives, a burden, weight, but it is his limits that are showing us what is actually possible. Saturn doesn’t make things easy, but by cutting away at excess, does allow us to work with him, by finding our focus and resolve, in order to grow and nurture something truly meaningful and lasting in our lives.

Mercury Retrogrades in Libra: Light as a Feather

Mercury has turned retrograde in Libra. It is time to find a more authentic expression of relationship, to reconsider how we use our voice. Libra is the sign of the scales, it is about balance, the balance of our heart with objective truth. Imagine the image of a heart being weighed against a feather, which the Egyptians believed at the time of death was the ultimate test of a life worthy of eternal afterlife or utter nonexistence. Allow yourself to feel the cold harsh judgement of such a test, and then take it in, internalize it. How do we constantly weigh our own actions against our own potential? Where do we search for the balance of attachment versus flight, the desire to maintain relation and forge a bond with someone or something, and our desire to be free?

Now to come back at the image, and to really look at the weighing process; what makes a heart heavier than a feather, is it the way we sadden our hearts with denial of its desires? Think of the feeling of following your passions, how it feels like you can soar and reach great heights of ecstasy and love. But also the scales our external, our hearts against a feather, perhaps the judgement is examining how we deny our love to the world (not following our passions is denying our heart to the world), we hold it in closely, protecting it, fearing heartbreak and vulnerability. All that non-communicated love, weighing down the scales, love that is meant to be shared.

Mercury begins to move backwards in Libra and we wonder, what messages can we tune into right now about the ways we are out of balance? How can a deeper understanding of the voice of our heart help us heal our relationships? This is a time in which we can move beyond the mind’s understanding of the heart; to really heeding its voice, allowing it to show us a path to lightheartedness.

What does it mean for a heart to be out of balance with a feather, for love and truth to not be equally maintained? Allowing love of power to overwhelm right action, to lie and cheat to gain the pleasure of material goods, to hide our true nature in order to maintain an illusion. This retrograde is a time of reevaluating our judgments around relationships, to find the true judge that exposes our hearts to the eagle eye of authentic discourse, where truth is in the value found within the relationship. Ultimately the judge is the space between you and me, and the judgement is the ability for us to maintain a true relationship that allows for love, pain, joy, grief, and an honest look at the integrity of our hearts. For if the relationship doesn’t lift both people up and nourish each other, but drags and pulls one down instead, then the judgement is seen in the heavy discord of an imbalanced connection. However ultimately the balance must come from within, by allowing equal consideration of our own needs and the need to keep integrity; meaning to not let the sometimes desperate hunger to be loved and feel secure, allow us to lie or guilt another into feeding that hunger, but to find an honest way to communicate our heart’s desires.

Virgo’s Eclipse: A Flawed Divinity

I’ve been noticing a consistent pattern, as I’ve been reading astrological forecasts on this month’s partial solar eclipse in Virgo, for Sunday the 13th of September. The tossing around of the word healing, and a general tone of upbeat positivism. Stating that this is a time of tremendous potential for healing and breaking away of old karma, etc. Not to dismiss what others are saying, but I just want to keep in mind that always focusing on the light, and the lifting up of oneself towards healing, happiness, while not bad, is not always honoring the deeper states and desires of the soul. A focus on healing oneself is one of the most important goals of a lifetime, I believe, but I think we forget that deep healing isn’t a simple practice of mending broken bones, but of finding the courage to really take a deep look at one’s own flaws. As Saturn makes the final transition out of Scorpio within a week, we are given a final chance to really reclaim our power, by snatching back our shadows left to wander the world and create havoc without our awareness. With Jupiter in Virgo opposing Neptune in Pisces, we are being shown a new perspective on our failures, the potential within our imperfections, the joy of dedicating ourselves to our own path of inner healing, no matter how disillusioned we might become, no matter how easy it might be at times to fall back into our own victim mentality that the world is out to get us and we are helpless.

No matter how tightly woven into a pattern it feels like, our soul knows the way through. If we can learn to understand its language, we can break free. This solar eclipse in Virgo is offering us a fresh start, the moon representing our habitual self, and being so strongly illuminated by the sun to the point of partial eclipsing, we are getting a glimpse of how we entangle ourselves in a web of self-doubt and criticism. We forget that our desire to attain perfection, stems from a desire to become closer to soul, to experience the sacred in the everyday, to embody our greatest potential. With Chiron, an asteroid that represents our vulnerabilities (among other things), opposing this new moon, we are encountering the ways in which we feel estranged from soul, from sacred experience. By revealing to us our fears of imperfection and of not feeling worthy of divinity, we can truly begin the healing process of moving closer to soulful communion.

However, Uranus in Aries will be in difficult aspect to the Solar Eclipse, warning us of a tendency to act impulsively, to start havoc in order to avoid the potential change of actually dedicating oneself to the process of real inner growth. We need to learn to discriminate between when quick change is actually needed in order to tear us from the compulsive and over analytical nature of Virgo, and when we are just hurling bolts out of anger and frustration.

Jupiter: God is in the Details

I’ve been getting a sense of the current transit of Jupiter through Virgo. I was thinking about it yesterday and the phrase, God is in the Details, came to me. I’d heard it before but now it took on new meaning. It’s that sense of finding the divine, the bigger meaning, the great message/wisdom within the minut tiny things that are constantly taking up our attention every day. And in the details of my life I’ve noticed a shift in the quality of my very chatter-filled mind. Instead of the usual imposing voice that is constantly telling me the right thing to do in the moment, or what I should be doing for myself, I find a new more peppy one that when it tells me it’s time to brush my teeth and I resist, it doesn’t berate me and put me down, which makes me resist stronger, instead it gently encourages and reminds me that it’s good for me because its doing something for myself and then I find myself happy to oblige. And normally when we have that voice that tells us “we aren’t capable” or “we are going to fail” or “why bother”, it’s the voice of fear over the death of an identity, because we identify so strongly with our weaknesses just as much as our strengths. It is like Jupiter is giving us a temporary respite, by cheerleading us along, by revealing our eternal spirit that cannot die, but remains constant through our inner transformations.
I then had an interesting conversation today where I was talking about how spiritful and expansive African dancing feels, and the other person replied by saying she couldn’t do that, lose herself like that. I then said that it wasn’t losing yourself but accessing and revealing another part of yourself by helping loosen control of your mind, and allowing your body to respond to the movements and drumming. And she retorted saying how that was losing oneself because the mind is the I, the ego, the self. Jupiter through Virgo though, really exemplifies my newly forming identity that feels less tightly identified with my thoughts only, but encompassing my greater spirit felt through feelings, hunches, body, and something more that I am beginning to experience in those tiny moments when I stop looking in my mind for safety of self, and instead find eternity in the second, and all-encompassing meaning in the tiniest detail.
I’ve been finding myself reading or listening to exactly what I need to hear in the moment to confirm on inner question or inquiry, which keeps my mind from getting into a rut, broadening my thoughts instead. If we allow ourselves to expand beyond our narrow confines of our own limited beliefs, we will notice a benevolent quality beginning to encompass our daily thoughts and tasks, our normal mundane processes will take on a lucky quality, bringing so much meaning and joy into our lives.
Also I’ve been noticing more acutely the dilemma between the mind/body, and when I nourish with healthy food over the instant desires of my mind, I experience a greater feeling of wellbeing, but when I eat something really processed, after the initial high, I will feel my mood sink really quickly and my thoughts become more negative. I’ve felt this before but with this transit it now feels exaggerated.

Doorway

I just came home from a beautiful workshop in which we explored different divinatory methods. We watched this short video on Doors/Doorways and all the different symbols and meanings they hold for us, in an attempt to tap into our imaginations, in order to engage with that part of our minds for the weekend retreat. We were then asked to meditate in front of a doorway and write what came to us. I wrote this little poem that I would like to share.

The door beckons me,
a sense of longing creeps in,
for new surroundings,
for the door of my mind to crack open,
and spill the light of clarity.

I stand on one side,
always wanting to be on the other,
I don’t want here, I want there.
It’s a feeling of being cramped
within limited perception,
a container of I,
always bound by the door of
self, of body.

Beyond lies my death,
and also my soul.
I leap across and find
the other side transforms,
like the shift of space
seeps into porous skin,
remolding mind and body.

Venus: Mirror, Mirror on the Wall

Last Saturday, Venus finally turned direct after retrograding towards and then slightly past Mars. She is now directed towards Mars and perhaps women who have been in deep inner process and reflection, are going to direct those new values towards men, in what may seem an irrational change of heart. However, I will be reflecting on this recent retrograde by examining our relationship with the energy of Venus. Venus is a fascinating archetype to reflect upon. She is that which will do anything to fulfill her own desires, without a thought of the consequences or potential harm she could cause to others. That is Venus in high gear, potentially very dangerous for promises made and trusting hearts. But do we dismiss her because of her potential for destruction and chaos, or do we learn to honor what she is all about, what she is really asking of us. Why does she become out of control, making messy love triangles, embodying sweet seduction, tearing at mother/daughter bonds, creating malicious schoolgirls, shredding meaningful commitments? What is she wanting from us?

mirror
I just heard a beautiful rendition of the classic fairy tale of Snow White that made me think about how perfect a story it is for examining the nature of Venus. In the story, the evil stepmother asks the mirror that hangs on the wall, “who is the fairest of them all?” It is no wonder she is so vain and jealous, for she depends on a reflection to see her beauty and value. She is constantly looking for validation from another, and is spiteful of all who possess a greater beauty that she feels lacking. Is she desiring, a feeling of being loved, of being beloved, for her beauty, for being desirable? There are many reasons we want to be seen as beautiful, but a big one, I presume is a desire to enjoy oneself, to experience pleasure. How often do we find ourselves in social settings where we are questioning our own worth with thoughts like, “Are these people finding me interesting, do I look good, am I wanted here, am I being the best, most beautiful, intelligent, fun person I can be?”
Do you see how even though these questions are all about oneself, there is a real lack of self-value inherent in these thoughts, that keep one from actually enjoying themselves. How about if instead of worrying about how we appear to others, we make our own pleasure, the topmost priority. Talk to the person whose stories we enjoy, dangle your feet in the lake and watch people converse, do the one thing that will bring you the most pleasure in the moment and something begins to shift. You actually start being able to receive affection, compliments are truly taken in, where with the evil stepmother, hearing about her beauty once isn’t enough, she needs the validation over and over again, never really appreciating it.
We then begin to encounter a profound paradox, for when we actually find ourselves enjoying life, and giving value to our own pleasure, we become less fixated on ourselves and more present with the world, and the people around us. We want to experience people, love them, care for them, get to know them for who they are, not for how they reflect our beauty back to us. Also what is more beautiful than the look of ecstasy on the face of someone enthralled in their passion or the moment.
So we must not allow pleasure to remain skin deep, in the obsession over base appearances and level of attractiveness to others, but to move deeper into our souls, and ask ourselves, “If I truly want to experience pleasure, and not the shadows of it in addictions and betrayals, how must a change the way I relate to myself and what I place value upon?