Wednesday morning, March 6th at 8:04 am (PST) we begin our new cycle of the Moon at 21 degrees Aquarius. Aquarius is the sign of new horizons, changing the paradigm and social equality. An air sign, the intellect is the power used to devise these new social structures and ruled by Saturn, humility, fear and an awareness of time are the key factors propelling forward movement. The meditative quality of the New Moon comes from the fact that it is dark, unseen by the bright light of the Sun joining it instead of reflecting upon it. Our minds are at their darkest, and therefore least active. Our energy might be low and our collective need is to retreat to quiet and sit in pure consciousness. Saturn itself is gazing at the Moon and Sun here, within 3 degrees, bringing more severity and fear, but also a naturally meditative and detached state.
This New Moon also marks the end of Maha Shivaratri, the great night of Lord Shiva, celebrated in India as the 13th night and 14th day of the lunar month of Phalguna. Since Shiva is pure consciousness itself, it is technically a shivaratri every cycle as the Moon fades to black, but this month it is the great celebration because we are also fading out of winter and beckoning in Spring. In India and around the world, people will be meditating, chanting the names of Shiva and coming together in peaceful congregations to honor the destroyer of our attachments. Shiva is celebrated best with austerity, discipline and spiritual practice. It is the easiest to detach from our emotions and ego when the Moon is dark, because we are the least “full” of all the feelings and thoughts that keep us in and enjoying the world. It can be depressing for those who are still in great attachments. These things will be accentuated more by the Saturn dristhi.
As women, we often have our moon cycles synced to the Moon and as such, naturally go inside and release and let go as our bodies do the same. Nowadays, with so many ways our environments interrupt our natural rhythms, we may have to honor it for ourselves without the prompting from our bodies. One way to work towards syncing your cycle with the Moons, is to use heavy curtains or blinds to keep your room dark around the New Moon and let in a bit of light during the Full Moon. You can also use Moonstone or pearl to help regulate your cycle. Bleeding with the New Moon is considered a more fertile cycle, and also a healthier cycle in ancient feminine wisdom.
The star of this particular New Moon is called Purva Bhadrapada, the early blessed result (or foot), which is half in Aquarius and half in Pisces. It is ruled by Aja Ekapada, the one-footed goat and is associated with the spark of lightening that awakens one to Truth. It is that first awakening we experience on the path, but not the treading of the path itself. We often get caught up in that early glimpse and forget that there is much ahead, and at times the path might be treacherous. The goat must make his way up a scraggly mountain surface with only one foot. This requires some knowledge, as well as a lot of faith, which comes in the second part of this star.
Mercury has made its way into the watery and mystical realm of Pisces this last week and is beginning its retrograde cycle on the 5th. The planet of our buddhi; intellect, discrimination and communication, is considered debilitated in the all-merging sign of the fish. Here, thoughts swim in different directions and delineation is almost not possible. Our emotions and psychic experiences flow when Mercury is in Pisces and therefore hinder our capacity to think rationally, clearly and categorically. When Mercury is Retrograde, our capacity to think and communicate is slowed, delayed and sometimes even seems “reversed”. This combination of debility and retrograde motion can actually be a blessing, as we slow down and think before we speak, we might actually catch that spiritually-sound gem floating by! To boot, Jupiter, the ruler of Pisces is giving his energetic gaze from another water sign, Scorpio, offering his wisdom and generosity to our buddhi. Rather than a time to do taxes or organize your thoughts, this is a good time for free-form journaling, creative pursuits and connecting to your spiritual practices.
Jupiter, is himself, being given an energetic gaze, or drishti from the ruler of the sign he is in, as Mars in Aries offers strength, courage and discipline to do the inner work and reach great depths in our personal spiritual practices. Venus is in Capricorn, giving us a more grounded approach to our happiness-seeking. Here we want happiness that is material, actual and for us. It is a good time to set boundaries, and to map out what happiness for you really looks like and start doing the actual steps to get there. Since the South node of the Moon is still lingering in Capricorn, and within 10 degrees of Venus, we might feel a bit withdrawn from our need to be happy and even from relationships in general. This adds to the capacity for us to seek true spiritual happiness as we will realize the shortcomings of the happiness that is based on mutual pleasure in the material world.
We are just weeks away from the nodal shift to Gemini/Sagittarius from Cancer/Capricorn and finishing the karma that met us from whatever house Capricorn resides in might be the pesky last work we need to do. Sweep the corners, dust the corners, clear out the last cobwebs you’ve been holding onto in that area of your life, so you can move on. From the Cancer end, hold onto whatever truth you have distilled from the cycle of the Mother and bring it forward with you as we move into a period of higher focus on discrimination and facts over faith and feelings.
Blessed New Moon and Maha Shivaratri, may we all find our greatness in our peace. Om Namah Shivaya.
Maha Mrityunjaya Mantra
Om Tryambakam Yajamahe Sugandhim Pushti-Vardhanam
Urvarukamiva Bandhanan Mrityormukshiya Mamritat
We worship the Three-eyed Lord who is fragrant and who nourishes and nurtures all beings. As is the ripened cucumber (with the intervention of the gardener) is freed from its bondage (to the creeper), may he liberate us from death for the sake of immortality.
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On February 19th at 7:53 am PST the Moon and Sun will be in exact degrees across from each other, forming the Full Moon in sidereal Leo, in the star of Magha. Magha is the mighty star of kings, ancestors, and lineage. It is the part of us as the Lion or Ruler where we must tap into our predecessors and gain wisdom and insight from the past. It is ruled by the Pitris, the godfathers of mankind and who are said to be the original ancestors for us all. In this star we are interested in preserving the traditions and cultures that have shaped us and in embodying the qualities of leadership, pride, loyalty and integrity that a good ruler possesses. In the sign of Leo, we may make our stand bold and fierce, showing others how and where we are in our power. The shadow side of this is a self-importance or arrogance that does not take into the account the greater social good.
With the Sun recently moved into Aquarius, we are actually finding our power through humility, hard work and new paradigms and systems right now. This Full Moon reflects the opposite pole of behavior and values that is being illumined, so as to help balance our inclinations in this new Sun cycle. We have not been overly powerful, or are putting a greater emphasis on the social good and how to make our actions work for all people. We are in need of standing firm in our own beliefs, power and status to claim back some of our Self. This will happen in a different area of life for each of us, depending on our rising sign and which house, and therefore area of our life, Leo inhabits.
The Sun is joined Mercury, although not in close degrees, but we can see how our communication has been overshadowed and also emphasizing that which is best for all and the world community, as opposed to ourselves as individuals. This gaze across to the Moon here will show us how we need to communicate to others our individuality and power, not just express it in emotional or fiery ways. Leo is also a perpetual teacher, wanting to share what we know sometimes before we know it very well. This reflection on the Moon might encourage us to speak up on a social issue that we have been quiet and brooding over.
Venus has just passed by Saturn, and we will start to see some of the pressure and responsibilities of our romantic relationships begin to ease. We have been perhaps enjoying some more spiritual or belief-driven connections with others as of late, but when Venus moved into exact conjunction with Saturn at the end of the past week, after Valentine’s day, the pleasure really began to fold into pressure and duty. Saturn can help us commit, but it does so out of a place of fear rather than joy. Jupiter’s tenure in Scorpio can help us look at ourselves rather than just the other person and their faults and shortcomings, but it does not help the lack of fun Saturn brings to the party.
Mars is now in his own sign of Aries, offering us courage, strength and action, although it can be fiery and curt, getting us into arguments and fights if we are not careful. The Moon is just moved out of his gaze for this full moon, so perhaps our tempers will settle a little and we can find true power that is connected to a higher vision and a lineage of truth.
Happy Full Moon. Hare Ohm.
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The New Moon in sidereal Capricorn is on Monday, February 4th at 1:03 pm PST. This sets off a cycle of Effort, Tenacity, Utilitarian Action and taking care of External Responsibilities. We tend to feel the pressure and weight of the external world when the Moon is in Capricorn, as a result of the rulership of Saturn. The pressure is a facet of Time. Knowing we have a limited amount of it, we have to push ourselves to do the hard work to get things done and secure ourselves. It is a fear-based work ethic in many ways, as opposed to one born of enjoyment in the tasks at hand, or discipline for the sake of strengthening oneself.
The Moon and Sun are in Shravana, the star listening. In Shravana, we are able to hear beneath the surface of things. It is a very spiritual star, ruled by Vishnu and indicating his rule over all three realms. If we allow the chatter and clatter of the outside world to fade away, we can even hear the primordial sound of Ohm itself.
Mercury is quite close, within four degrees of the Sun and Moon and will add an extra emphasis on communication. All New Moons are excellent times for drawing within and meditating or chanting, but this one in particular chanting will be quite beneficial. The south node, Ketu is in the sign of Capricorn, but at 1 degree, it is preparing to move into Sagittarius in March. Therefore, in many ways, this New Moon is an opportunity to take a new step forward in this area of our lives. Ketu has inhabited this house for a year and a half and has caused a particularly challenging past year for us as Mars joined it over the summer and early fall. This was a place we were actively avoiding, and yet Mars was blowing up for six month in 2018 and we have been closing out our last karma with this place in our lives for the past few months.
Venus in Sagittarius is moving in on Saturn slowly, causing us to be happiest when committed in our spiritual practice and to be seeking the same ideals and beliefs in our partners. On the 18th of February, we will see the two in exact degrees, which can put a damper on our sense of happiness, as Saturn brings fear and pressure to our sense of enjoyment and our relationships. It may give us the inclination to commit to others, but again, coming from a fearful place of awareness of time and pressure to be responsible.
Mars is almost out of Pisces, the next day after the New Moon, Tuesday, Feb 5th, Mars will move into his home sign of Aries. We will all step into our more courageous and disciplined selves, and we will also find that our actions take an abrupt turn towards selfishness and we may become a bit short with our temper. This will be especially true when the Moon joins Mars on February 10th. The tension will be eased the night of Feb 12th (PT) through the end of Valentine’s Night on Feb 14th, with an exalted Moon in Taurus, the sign of pleasure and beauty and food, and with a dristhi from Jupiter in Scorpio, offering some depth and intrigue to the romance.
Happy New Moon! Hare Ohm.
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On the evening of Sunday, January 20th (and 21st in some locations) there will be a Super Blood Moon in the lunar star of Pushya, right in the heart of Cancer. The eclipse will be Full from 8:41-9:43 pm PST, with the max eclipse at 9:12 pm, and the actual complete Full Moon itself (Sun and Moon in exact degrees across from one another) at 9:16 pm PST.
The Full Moon will be considered a “Blood Moon” because it is a Full Lunar Eclipse and the Earth will be completely blocking the Moon from receiving it’s shine from the Sun, only the outer edge of light will cast its glow on the Moon, lighting it a deep red color. It is a Super moon because the Moon is going to be closer than usual to the Earth, making it appear 10 to 15 percent bigger to us. The Moon is in its home territory in Cancer, the sign of our emotions, unconditional love and the mother. We can feel where we are most nurturing, and also vulnerable in whatever house Cancer holds for us in our natal charts.
This eclipse marks the final hurrah in a year and a half period where we were collectively focused on the feminine, most specifically, the mother. The north node, Rahu, has been in Cancer since August of 2017, giving an amplified telescopic lens to our place as women in this world, as well as the feminine as an energetic component of all things. We can see this through the rise of female politicians, the “Me too” movement, the onslaught of social justice campaigns geared towards uplifting women and minorities. We can also see this is in the enormous backlash and resurgence of racism, patriarchy and colonialism that has come about from many leaders around the world as they grapple to maintain the status quo of power. Wherever Rahu goes there is an element of frenzy and exaggeration, the North node magnifies and distorts things in a way that creates a strong consumptive desire. Wherever Rahu is, we cannot sate our hunger for more of that thing. We also cannot learn our lessons wisely. Both the nodes of the moon cause illusion and stress in the material realm, as they are tied more to the subtle realms. Where Ketu, the south node that partially eclipsed the Sun two weeks ago ties us to to the ending of karma and narrowing in on what remains, Rahu attaches us to beginning new karma and widening the scope to take everything in.
The specific star of Pushya, is the nurturer and nourisher. It is often associated with the breasts and the offering of milk from a mother to its young. Here we are able to fully nurture what we love unconditionally and give without any regard to what we will receive in return. Pure love and devotion, this is the star the planet Jupiter, which rules our beliefs, ideals and ultimately wisdom, is exalted in. Jupiter will be casting an energetic gaze, or dristhi, on this Super Blood Moon, offering even more wisdom, grace and generosity of spirit to our psyche.
This Lunar Eclipse will be directly across from not only the Sun and South node in Capricorn, but also Mercury, our planet of communication has just entered this practical and hardworking sign. Here we can be grounded, determined and functional in our speech and communication, instead of standing on a pulpit and preaching our beliefs. Here we have a chance of using only the words that will say what needs to be said, but we also have a chance of being selfish, or utilitarian in our efforts as such.
Venus is one degree from Jupiter in Scorpio at this point, causing our beliefs and ideals to be very intertwined with our romantic lives and relating capacity. We can expect to be drawn to others with like-minded beliefs, but also to see the ways in which others, especially romantic partners, keep us from attaining our highest ideals and practicing our beliefs. In Scorpio, we can expect to go deep here, and see the spiritual and psychological path of our relationships with others.
Jupiter is gazing at, and still in an exchange of signs with, Mars in Pisces. These two are also in close degrees, with Mars only two degrees behind Jupiter. This is a very strong point for us to put our spiritual beliefs into practice and to release actions, battles and anger that does not serve our higher purpose or path. Mars in Pisces can be the path of least resistance. Sometimes it is avoiding what is hard, but with this powerful planetary exchange it is more likely to be letting go of what is not meant to be.
As always, eclipses are powerful events that indicate a reset with certain energies, and in this case, a setting forth new paradigms that have been being created over the last year and a half. Since it is a lunar eclipse with the north node, it will be “starting karma”, but because we are at the end of this particular eclipse axis, it is ending this particular focus in this way (erratic, magnified, even delusional at times) and is putting forward a new blueprint in which we can understand the divine feminine in our selves and in our world and move forward with a more discriminatory mind to find balance when Rahu moves into the sign of Gemini in March. Prayer, meditation and focus on the Divine Mother in all her myriad forms can be useful and while the moon will be super and blood red, it is not advised to bathe in eclipse light. Hare Ohm.
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As we embark on the new Gregorian calendar year, we have quite a few astrological shifts to help us move out of the old paradigms and into a fresh perspective! A New Moon and Solar Eclipse will start us out on January 6th, with the Sun and Moon joining in Sidereal Sagittarius and the eclipse point being at the beginning of Capricorn, ready to move (backwards, as nodal axis points do) into Sag itself in March. Coming on the end of a somewhat brutal year with the South node joined Mars for 6 months from May to October, I think we are all just about over this particular axis and happy to bid it adieu! What a way to send it off… with the day the Earth and Sun are closest to each other (January 3rd), which will be hot in the Southern Hemisphere, but cold in the Northern Hemisphere, a meteor shower the early hours of Jan 4th , the New Moon/partial solar eclipse on January 5th- 6th and finally an epic Super Blood Moon Full Lunar Eclipse on January 20-21!! Whew!
The first of these two eclipses, the Partial Solar Eclipse on Jan 5th & 6th, although not visible from the US, as it’s max point will be 5:40 pm PST, will be felt as our Power, Authority and Consciousness being partially re-set or “eclipsed”. This will be a time to really check in with our Teachings, Teachers and Belief Systems as the Sun is in Sagittarius, and to allow our more practical, functional selves to show us what is and is not working in the application of these teachings, from the Eclipse point (Ketu) in Capricorn.
The New Moon is in the nakshatra of Purva Ashada, at approximately 21 degrees sidereal Sagittarius. This is the star of “Early Victory” where we tend to what we have planted in the open-earth wounds left by the destruction of the previous star of Mula, “the Root”. Here we feel the “victory” of putting energy into the seedlings we have begun to give life to. In Sagittarius, we are filled with Purpose, and passionate about what we Believe. Teachers, teachings and religious study can all be found in this section of the sky… we operate on Faith and Spirituality, rather than Fact and Intellect to determine what is True.
Mercury has also moved into Sagittarius, leaving behind impassioned speech in Scorpio and taking up the higher road in Sagittarius. This can definitely increase the chances that we will use our words to promote our beliefs, regardless of whether we practice those beliefs ourselves or if they are “sound belief systems”. Many of which are not. With our mouth on its pulpit and Saturn and the Sun still in super close conjunction (the Sun has just crossed Saturn, which is still combust, or being burned by its hot rays) we need to be careful of feeling like the underdog or like the world is full of evil step-mothers and sisters and we are poor Cinderella. Life may have been feeling quite burdensome the last week or so and we may feel we are being asked to shoulder more than our share of life’s hardships. Before we throw a vocal pity party parading our beliefs into a one-person play about why it’s so unfair, let’s take a minute to weigh in with how we create our own reality (see Jupiter in Scorpio above) and what we can do about changing it (see Mars in Pisces). Also, the Earth is rotating along and Saturn will soon be out of this combustion, so your outlook is likely to be improving already.
Mars moved into Pisces on December 22nd, right after the Full Moon and Winter Solstice. It will be here until February 6th, beginning a month and a half of Action, Discipline and Courage in the direction of our beliefs. Because Pisces is the feminine, watery side of our Jupiterian Wisdom and Principles, we might find our actions to be guided by our feelings, intuitions and spiritual connections. Mars and Jupiter are in an exchange of signs here, with Jupiter aspecting from his perch in Scorpio. This exchange offers both planets more assistance in assimilating the energetics of the sign they are in. The ruler of the sign giving dristhi (gaze) also adds power and intelligence to the planet. Scorpio is the feminine, watery nature of Mars, where we go inside ourselves and courageously face our fears. Jupiter is able to use his wise teachings to journey into the deep in a skillful and productive way that will help us to uncover our own true wisdom here. We will be given the courage we need to take our principles and ideals and spiritual teachings into practice, as well as the insight to see where we are not already doing so. This is a powerful time for us to set up real intentions and the necessary follow through to make them happen.
Venus moved out of her home sign of Libra, and into Scorpio, where we might find a bit more depth in our relating and relationships. Shallow is not going to work here, nor is placating or agreeing, just to get along. In Scorpio, we are more likely to have emotional outbursts, strong displays of passionate feelings and fears coming to the surface. We are also more likely to want to control our partners. Hopefully, the presence of Jupiter in this same sign will help us to continue to aspire towards higher spiritual presence in our relationship with ourselves, which will then contribute to how we show up in relationship to others. As Venus moves closer to Jupiter in the weeks to come, be careful of spiritually bypassing others and/or trying to control your hold on people by using spiritual teachings to justify your perspective. In general, the best way to use our teachings is for self-betterment, not to tell others how to be. Of course, teachers will often show how the teachings can improve student’s lives, but as we are seeing more and more, if they are not also practicing what they preach, then it leads to false guidance and often abuse of power...
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