Full Moon/Lunar Eclipse, Spring Equinox and Holi!
Sunday, March 20th is the Spring Equinox here in the Northern Hemisphere, where we come into equilibrium with the balance of Day and Night, and Light and Dark. In the Southern Hemisphere, this will lead into the Fall and Winter and more darkness than light and in the Northern Hemisphere, we will experience more and more daylight as we now officially begin Spring. This is the precursor to a Full Moon and Penumbral Lunar Eclipse which will take place on the night of March 22nd into the early morning of March 23rd here in Hawaii. A penumbral lunar eclipse is when the Sun, Earth and Moon align in an imperfect straight line, and the Earth will block some of the Sun's light from reaching the Moon's surface, covering a small portion of the Moon with the outer part of its shadow. The rest of the Moon will receive direct sunlight and may even be just as bright as a normal Full Moon. (reference: http://www.timeanddate.com/eclipse/penumbral-lunar-eclipse.html) Here in Hawaii, the actual phase of Full Moon, or Purnima will begin on Monday, March 21st at 11:43pm and will continue through all of Tuesday into the wee hours of Wednesday, culminating in the fullest moment, where the Sun and the Moon are in exact same degrees of the opposite sign at 2:02 am. So we will get two nights to bless up under the Full Moon….and the eclipse will last from 11:39 pm March 22nd to 3:54 am March 23rd, with the peak time being at 1:47 am.
This Full Moon & Eclipse is happening in the sign of Virgo, while the eclipse point, Rahu, is itself in Leo, joined Jupiter, still Retrograde. While two weeks ago, the Solar Ecliipse in Aquarius by the South Node, Ketu, marked an ending of karma with this area of our life and our bigger humanitarian vision, this Lunar eclipse will mark the opening of new karma with the north node opening its jaws to our Power and Authority in this world. Jupiter is helping us maintain a sense of Justice and alignment with our principles, but the retrograde motion is making us less certain as to what are ideals and beliefs truly are. (Check out the last New Moon report and Sign up for my newsletter to receive your FREE Report on both of these eclipses for all 12 signs-if you haven't already!) The full moon and eclipse will be in the Nakshatra of Uttaraphalguni, the "later red one", which is symbolized by the two back legs of a cot. This star cluster bridges Virgo and Leo, bringing our leadership and nobility into the detailed and intellectual world of contracts and power through Union, marital or otherwise. This is said to be the star in which Shiva and Shakti were married and is considered an auspicious star for weddings. It is also a place where we experience healing and use our compassion for humanity to fight for what we believe is right. The influence of the Sun, the ruler of this nakshatra and the deity Aryaman, who is the up keeper of our honor and societal rules, make this a place where we maintain and uphold current structures of power. The influence of Mercury, through the rulership of Virgo, allows for us to use discernment and knowledge to attach our power and authority to that which is practical and true, according to the facts. (reference: "The Nakshatras" Dennis Harness, PhD)
Virgo is where we focus on the details and the facts and information in order to use our buddhi, our intellect, to discern fact from fiction, pivotal from mundane, etc. However, in Virgo we can be super critical and so bogged down in details that we forget the big picture of why we are compiling information to begin with. This is strongly contrasted to the Sun in Pisces, joined Virgo's ruler Mercury in his place of debilitation. Swimming in a sea of endless possibility, the footless fish comes and goes in and out, also collecting data, but of a different sort. This data is anything that streamlines to the big picture. Unlike the worldly, practical information Virgo seeks, Pisces seeks information of the soul, the other planes of existence and metaphysical reality. Pisces is not interested in the mundane, earthly concerns of the pre-pubescent girl (Virgo, the Virgin) who is just discovering the cold harsh reality that life doesn't always fit into our neat little rows and boxes...the fish is the oldest soul who is getting ready to depart this earth and this realm and is detached from these practical, earthly concerns. The Sun is joined Mercury, who is debilitated in Pisces because sometimes the fish struggles to find the right communication to express tangibly that which is quite surreal. Expect communication to be emotional and dream-like, without clear boundaries or facts and details for this transit. However, joined the Sun, there is likely to be a strong connection between what information you are actually processing and how your Soul (Atman) is tuning into the bigger Soul (Brahman). Your words may not be crystal clear, but your deep understanding of the big picture is likely to be. During the phase of this Full Moon, we might find that we are connecting on a Soul Plane to Source and to our more spiritual reality, but on the earth plane we are nit-picking through the details. As the eclipse rolls in, we will feel a slight re-set (not a full reset because it is not a full eclipse) on this detail obsessing and pull our heads out of the grains of sand, so that we might examine the whole beach and find our stake on it.
Saturn and Mars are closer int he sky now and still giving us a run for our money in Scorpio, whereever that may fall in your life. Hopefully we are learning something from each one of our struggles as we move through this alignment and are strengthening ourselves by really diving deep into our own emotions and psyche. Saturn will begin his Retrograde motion early on March 25th, beginning a 5 month period of deep reflection on our Commitments, Time, Hard Work, and Fears. This is a time to really marinate on whatever explosions you have been having with this conjunction with Mars. It has likely stirred up your anger, as well as your sense of action and strength to battle what's in front of you....just don't lose sight of the fact that what is in front of you is little more than a reflection of your own self and what you need to battle in yourself. This is the truly hard work. Mars will actually be going retrograde himself April 17th, giving us cause to pause before we Act:) This may be the saving grace of this situation, as the period between Saturn going Retrograde to Mars joining the Retrograde motion will likely be one where we are feeling uncertain about anything we've committed to, and keeping those fears to ourselves while we ruminate. Mars may make explosive, angry bouts come from all these suppressed "withholds", so Mars also slowing down is important for the "think before we act" motto to kick into play and save us from wrecking our relationships with others (Personal, Career or Romantic, depending on where it falls in your chart--again, check out the Eclipse Report for all 12 signs because I mention the Saturn/Mars conjunction there). Try to do a lot of physical exercise and disciplined activities (Sadhana, daily practice, Yoga is our friend:) to channel your excess energy especially from March 25th to April 17th.
This is a great time for Ceremonies honoring the balance of power in the cosmic realm as well as here on Earth. In India, the celebration of Holi will take place on March 23rd, marking their burst into Spring. Holi is a festive event that takes place all over the country where the main affair is colors and throwing them everywhere! It is a massive party that everyone is invited to that involves throwing paint, powdered or other brightly colored substances onto one another's faces, murtis (statues), and all over the place in a wild frenzy in the streets, towns and villages. One of the many legends associated with the holiday illustrates the equinox and coming of Spring with the victory of "Good" over "Evil", which is of course, Light over Dark in the seasons…In this legend the dark demon Hiranyakash is trying to kill his son Prahlad, who is a devotee of the light (the Vedas and specifically Lord Vishnu, who sustains life on earth) and refuses to learn the demon ways. Hiranyakash's sister, Holika, has a special boon where she can sit in fire and not be touched. He convinces her to put Prahlad on her lap and enter the fire, thinking she will be saved but Prahlad will burn. However, her boon only works when she is alone and Prahlad chants and prays to Vishnu while they are in the fire and while she dies in the fire, he is left untouched by the flames, due to his reverence and devotion to the light. Holika's name is said to be how the holiday got its name. There is another myth of Radha and Krishna associated with Holi. In this story, Krishna is sad that he is so dark (blue) and Radha, his love, is so light. His mother, Yashoda, suggests to him to color the face of Radha so it looks like his own. He likes the idea and paints his lovers face to match his own. He then applies color to the other gopis too and a huge party breaks out in Vrindivan in celebration of Love, Peace and New Beginnings. Thus begins a tradition that people continue to express their love to each other and the start of Spring. (reference: http://www.holifestival.org)
Happy Holi! Have a blessed and happy Spring Equinox and Full Moon/Eclipse!! Hare Ohm
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New Moon, Total Solar Eclipse & Maha Shivaratri
The Total Solar Eclipse will be happening this Tuesday, March 8th from 1:19 pm HST to 6:34 pm HST. While the total eclipse will only be visible from parts of Indonessia and some locations in the Pacific, here in Hawaii we will witness a partial eclipse from 4:37 pm to 6:32 pm, with the peak of our visibility being at 5:37pm. A solar eclipse occurs when the Moon comes between the Earth and the Sun, causing it to black out. In astrology, we call the eclipse points nodes, and they are Rahu, the North Node of the Moon, and Ketu, the South Node. These are mathematical points that show where the Moon will intersect the ecliptic, the Earth's orbital plane. This determines where the eclipses will be occurring over the next year and a half. In Vedic mythology, Rahu was one being, an asura (a demon) with a ugly face and long tail trailing off at the end of his body. He is bluish-black and smokey in appearance. At the great Churning of the Milky Way, the demons and gods had to work together in order to release the immortal nectar, or soma, from the Primordial Sea. When the soma came out, Vishnu disguised himself as a beautiful woman and teased the demons while only feeding the nectar to the gods. Rahu snuck in between the Sun and the Moon and got himself a serving-full before the Sun and Moon noticed this and ratted him out to Vishnu. Vishnu then threw his discus at Rahu, slicing him in half, except the nectar had already been digested and he was now immortal. His two halves of this body stick around to haunt the Moon and Sun forever more to pay them back for telling on them. Rahu is just a head, that goes around devouring anything and everything in sight, and Ketu is just a body with a tail that has no interest in this world.
Ketu is shadowing the Sun, eclipsing our power and source of energy. This is the first eclipse in the new cycle that technically began on January 9th of this year when the lunar nodes moved signs into the Leo/Aquarius axis. While the overwhelming trend of the next year and a half while the nodes are in this placement is one of coming into our own power and strength and sense of leadership/authority, and pulling away from a more humanitarian vision, this first eclipse of the "season" is going to show a real withdrawal from our inner source of power. The Sun in Aquarius is already at its most humble, reflecting all its energy to the bigger worldview and often negating ourselves in the process, and for the afternoon/evening of March 8th (into the morning of March 9 for much of the world) we will experience the same blackout that is happening to the physical sun in our own Soul. New Moon's are already a time where we fade out of our emotional/thought-oriented mind and become more quiet, meditative, internal in our process. In the solar eclipse we will be feeling the fade out in both our Mind and our Soul Power, causing us to feel less inspired, more critical and to feel the mysterious and often confusing energy of Ketu, the south node, literally digesting our inner Sun. Whatever karma we are working through regarding standing in our Power, Authority, Leadership, and Strength is coming to pass right now. Also what our biggger vision for all of humanity is, how we can be progressive thinkers and help the whole world, not just ourselves. This is because the eclipse is happening in Aquarius, the sign of the hunble visionary, and we need to overcome our shyness and find our strength while remaining humble in order to truly stand in our power and lead others.
This eclipse is happening in the nakshatra of Purva Bhadrapada, "Early Blessed Result" and is ruled over by the deity Aja Eka Pada, the one-footed goat. This asterism is a place where we receive great insight, like a flash of lightening, and are suddenly aware of ourselves as Divine, rather than merely of this world. This wake-up call can propel us towards our final journey home, to a peaceful state of happiness and Oneness with all, but we must first walk the path that is now before us, as shown by the word "Pada" which means "foot". It is easy to think we have arrived when we have this kind of awakening, but there is still much work to do which is shown in the next nakshatra, Uttara Bhadrapada, or "Later Blessed Result". Ruled by Jupiter and straddling the signs of Aquarius and Pisces, this star cluster is one where we begin to spiritualize our bigger vision for the world.
Mercury moved into Aquarius on March 1st and Venus will have just entered Aquarius on March 7th, giving our Communication and energy when Relating to Others a humanitarian bent. Here we are less grounded and resourceful in our speech, but more likely to want to look at the bigger picture and how our words and ideas can help everyone, not just us. Our relationships will also take on a less selfish energy and perhaps less intimate as we focus more on how we can use our shared efforts to move forward our big ideas out into the world. These two planets (especially Venus) are a good distance from the Sun and Moon for this New Moon, but they will still have some effect of Ketu withdrawing their power and finishing some karma in terms of our Relationships, Ability to be Happy and Intellect and Communication.
Jupiter is still Retrograde, 4 degrees away from the north node Rahu in Leo, and in dual dristhi with all the planets in Aquarius. This is adding to some of our confusion and self-doubt, as we are feeling uncertain about our Wisdom and if we have the right knowledge and teachings that really align with our highest beliefs and ideals, but it is offering the grace of Guru nonetheless to our eclipse and the planets surrounding. If we can trust that the truth will reveal itself in due time and continue allowing ourselves to be exposed to different ideas without clinging to our rigid, sectarian mindsets about what we believe, this period that Jupiter is retrograde will offer us great insight and wisdom moving forward.
We are still facing ourselves and our fears in Scorpio with the Mars/Saturn conjunction. This is the place in our lives that is exploding right now, maybe in tiny bursts or maybe in one huge blast. This depends on not only where it is in our chart and how charged that area already is, and also on how much intelligence we have with Saturn to begin with. If we have been using the last year to really roll up our sleeves and do the hard work, to humble ourselves in order to really deal with our fears and emotions and how we project those onto others, then we are really likely to have tinier explosions in that area of our life, handling each one as it comes up and finding the inner discipline to deal with our own baggage rather than just turning to scream and yell at everyone else. This is a time for really finding the courage to look at our fears and real or imagined issues from the perspective that we are the keepers of our own karma and have the power to shift our own life through a simple shift in view point. The next time we think that someone else has wronged us, we can instead shift our perspective to wonder what we could do differently in the future so that our needs can be met. Perhaps the answer is not dealing with that person anymore, but we still understand from this perspective that they are not the problem in and of themselves, the issue is rather that we have chosen to engage with them and we have different values or psychologies that make us incompatible for engaging with that person. We take the energy off of what is wrong with them, and into the empowering realm of what we can do about our current situation to make it the way we want it to be. This is the great power of both Saturn and Mars. They are energies we are meant to use on ourselves, to discipline, strengthen, humble and determine to do what needs to be done. When we use these energies in an intelligent way, they create great strides for us in both our personal and professional lives because Action occurs, and the Commitment necessary to really take those actions to the next level. When we spend our time disciplining and humbling others by projecting our fears and anger onto them, we waste this valuable energy and cause conflict in our lives that ultimately upsets our own discipline and flow of progress. The only way in which we should use these planets with other people is to maintain our own boundaries and daily practices/disciplines so that we do not get distracted or side tracked from our forward trajectory by our relationships with others..
This New Moon is being preceded on Sunday,March 6th (here in Hawaii, it's Monday in India) by Maha Shivaratri, the great night of Lord Shiva. Shiva is the Divine Masculine and in his embodied presence is generally found in Meditation on top of Mount Kailash. He is said to have been married to Parvati on Maha Shivaratri, one of the embodied forms of his counterpart, the Divine Feminine or Shakti. Another story is that it is when he danced his great Tandava, the dance of primal creation, preservation and destruction, It is also said that he manifested as a lingam here on earth on this holy night. This night falls on the 14th lunar phase of the Waning Moon in the month of Magha, which corresponds roughly to February/March in the gregorian calendar. The New Moon is always a time for meditation and prayer and Shivaratri will only increase our powers to do so. Fasting or light eating is also practiced on this day and any kind of sadhana, daily practices, will be given Shiva's blessing. Chanting 'Om Namah Shivayah' 108 times, or simply sitting with yourself and breathing long deep breaths in and out through the nose as you allow the mental activity to fade from your brain, is also a good way to honor this auspicious night. This mantra below is especially powerful on Shivaratri and is offered as a blessing for protection, if you have a japa practice you can chant it 108 times also. Hare Ohm
Maha Mrityunjaya Mantra
Om Trayambakam yajamahe sugandhim pushti vardanam urvarukamiva bandhanan mrityor mokshiya ma'mratat
OM. We worship the 3-eyed Lord Who is fragrant and Who nourishes all beings. As the ripened cucumber is freed from its bondage (to the creeper vine), may He liberate us from death and bring us to immortality.
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