Follow the Moon: Astrology of intention and mindfulness

by Teri Parsley Starnes

Teri’s interest with astrology lies with helping people see how following a practice of intention and self-awareness leads to a fuller relationship with Mystery. Astrology is a wonderful tool for this. Her weekly column orients readers to the seasonal energy of
each month’s Sun sign in order to set magical/mindful intention for the lunar month beginning at the New Moon.

Each week Teri will write about the unfolding energies that support and challenge our intentions. The ebb and flow of the lunar cycle resides deep in our souls. Through following the phases of the Moon, we remember the natural cycles that guide us.

Astrologers divide the lunar month into eight phases. These are:
New Moon: Dreaming
Crescent Moon: Beginning
First Quarter Moon: Manifesting
Gibbous Moon: Perfecting
Full Moon: Illuminating
Disseminating Moon: Sharing
Last Quarter Moon: Evaluating
Balsamic Moon: Surrendering

Come follow the Moon as we practice intentional awareness together.

The waning phases of the Moon are a good time to evaluate and assess our experiences of the waxing phases. We’ve got a lot to unpack from the first two weeks of this lunar cycle: a solar eclipse, a lunar eclipse, and a Venus eclipse. All these events happened in the mutable signs of Gemini (air) and Sagittarius (fire). If you feel like a lot of energy has been stirred up these last two weeks, you are right!

In my own spiritual practices, I often set a conscious intention in the New Moon phase of the lunar cycle, but not always. Having a fair amount of mutable energy in my own chart, I don’t like to saddle myself with too much form. And through years of working with the lunar cycle as a way to hone my awareness, I’ve noticed that sometimes the really important lessons of a lunar cycle are not around my intention at all. Sometimes my mysterious allies have another intention for me. With so many momentous astronomical events happening, it may be that your mysterious allies had another plan for you too.

Right now, it is time to breathe and reflect on what we are learning. It is still too early to decide for sure what it all might mean. The areas of life that are ripe for renewal may be:

  • Relationship—Venus is moving retrograde and this invites us to go deeper into our patterns of relating.
  • Learning—all the emphasis on Gemini invites us to experience our minds in new ways, to notice the impact of mind on body and soul, and to seek wholeness through a piece of truth or insight.
  • Meaning—the lunar eclipse in Sagittarius stimulates the desire to enfold our diverse experiences into one big story of Truth. Have you found yours?
  • Compassion—Underneath the stimulating energy of Gemini and Sagittarius, Neptune and Chiron in Pisces have asked us to traverse the terrain of the heart.
  • Opening to feelings is not a safe experience, but we have the opportunity to develop our heart muscles for the future.

Forecast for June 10, 2012 – June 16

Sunday, June 10. I invite you to get in touch with the real sky. Tracking the appearances and disappearances of the planets deepens our experience. In mid-May, Mercury disappeared from the morning sky as it was overtaken by the rays of the Sun. Just like Venus, Mercury has been changing positions in the sky. Today, Mercury returns to being visible in the evening sky at sunset. This transition signals a change in how and why we use our minds. Morning star Mercury has a more logical focus and evening star Mercury, a more intuitional focus. How are you noticing this shift in yourself? Mercury will be climbing into greater visibility at sunset over the next few weeks. Astrologer Gary Caton  says this phase of Mercury is about seeking meaning for what has occurred since Mercury disappeared. Tune into your intuition now. The Moon is in Pisces from today thru most of Monday, June 11, helping us to do just that.

June 11—Last Quarter: Evaluating. This could be a mind blowing day. This phase of the Moon is about adjusting our attitude. The Moon in Pisces squares the Sun in Gemini and this invites us to adjust our mind/heart balance, or what we might call the air approach and the water approach to life. Often we put these qualities on different sides of the fence. What happens when we remove the fence? Two planets*, Jupiter and Chiron, pull us in each direction today. *Chiron is actually more like a minor planet.

Jupiter enters Gemini today and remains there for the next 12 months. This particularly potent Gemini Moon cycle has seeded Jupiter’s transition into Gemini. The Lovers card in the Tarot corresponds to Gemini in the Golden Dawn system. This card shows polarity and unity. The pulsation back and forth from these two points of view is a strong Gemini theme. Over the next year, we are invited to notice this pulsation. This dynamic colors the world and forms much of what we think is true. We get a chance to look at our
styles of thinking and perceiving.

The ruler of Gemini, Mercury is activating the square between Uranus and Pluto today. As the forces of change and transformation kick into gear, perhaps we can take this day to notice how our mental attitudes play into the possible fear of or desire for radical change.

To counter this mental action, Chiron stations retrograde today in Pisces. This shamanic energy takes us deeper into our hearts, patiently waiting to receive what we are ready to heal. Mercury plays a role here too in a harmonious trine to Chiron’s position for the next two days helping us to integrate this broad range of expression and understanding.

Tuesday, June 12. The Moon in Aries today joins with Uranus in the very nearly exact square to Pluto in Capricorn. Whatever Mercury stirred up the day before continues into today. Here’s an interesting polarity to investigate: action and reaction. When are you most aligned with your own values—when you dare to take action, even if you are afraid, or when you are reacting to others? What feels better to you?

Wednesday, June 13. The Sun and Moon contact Saturn in balancing Libra today. How do you regain your balance? What takes you out of balance? The Moon in Aries opposes Saturn. The actions and reactions of yesterday come home to roost. The Sun supports building firm foundations that encourage balance in our lives.

Thursday, June 14. Let’s take this day to listen to our bodies. The Moon is in Taurus and there is a pause in the action of the transits earlier this week. While still in the “evaluating phase” of this lunar cycle, remember to listen to the wisdom of your body. What physical adjustments help you to make the attitude adjustment you need to make to really move forward?

June 15—Balsamic Moon: Surrendering. With the Moon still in Taurus, we move into the letting go phase of this cycle. Are you resisting letting go of an idea, a truth, a way of understanding your world? This is pretty mystical stuff. What is left when you surrender your assumptions?

Saturday, June 16. This week began with Mercury emerging from the Sun’s rays into the evening sky. It ends with Venus emerging from the Sun’s rays as the morning star. There is beautiful symmetry in the sky right now. Venus will be quickly climbing higher and higher in the morning sky before sunrise. Mythically, Venus has traveled through the underworld into a seed moment when she transited the face of the Sun. Now, she returns with news to share! Significantly, the news is colored by a square between Chiron and Venus today. Chiron is the initiator. Venus has journeyed far, and right before her return, she meets the shaman. Many transits this week emphasize the relationship between mind and heart. Today’s meeting takes us back to that terrain.