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.
Forecast for July 8, 2012 – July 14.
If the waning phase of the Moon is about winding down and releasing, why does it feel like I’m speeding up more and more?
There is a lot to process right now. For me, as I notice how easy it is to get knocked off my center by events and even worse, anticipation of events, I’ve been putting extra effort into remembering intention, aligning with values, and seeking some semblance of calm. And from time to time, even actually enjoying myself in this beautiful summer. How about you?
Aries energy is the star this week, contributing to the tone of action and reaction. The gift of Aries, a cardinal fire sign, is the ability to start over. Because Aries often goes first—taking the lead even when feeling insecure about doing so—Aries also gets to make a lot of mistakes. But the “do over” was invented by Aries, and people with this sign emphasized are good at it. When Aries is emphasized by a transiting planet, we all get to practice the “do over.” This week may be full of such opportunities.
Not only does an Aries emphasis encourage us to try again, two planets station retrograde this week adding to the theme of going over past mistakes and successes, to see what more we can glean. Both Uranus in Aries and Mercury in Leo station retrograde this week.
Uranus is very strong as it stations retrograde on Friday the 13th. Fridays that fall on the 13th are special to Witches who were suspected of causing unlucky things to happen on these days. With this Uranus station, we get to claim our outcast, oddball status—perhaps do a little cackling as we notice all the unexpected mishaps around us that Uranus often provokes.
I attended two fascinating lectures on Mercury at the United Astrology Conference in May, one by Demetra George and the other by Gary Caton. Demetra George framed the role of Mercury by looking at the mythological qualities of Hermes. Hermes had many roles and one of them was the gatekeeper, the god at the doorway. Mercury stations retrograde three times a year, weaving and reweaving mental constructs, passing across the threshold of polarity, and inviting us to let go of rote patterns of perception. Think of Mercury retrograde periods as times to get a new outlook and way of doing things. The more we resist, the harder this transit can be. The more we welcome it, the more magical it is.
Gary Caton talked about the significance of the moment when Mercury retrograde conjoins the Sun. We can think of this as the heart of the retrograde experience, the time to invoke the magic of it. That moment won’t happen until July 28, but we can prepare ourselves for it now.
Sunday, July 8. The Full Moon on July 3 still resonates, but on a much more subtle level. The Moon wanes through its “sharing” phase for the next two days. In order to share our wisdom, we need to spend some time contemplating what it is. The Moon in Pisces favors the intuitive or mystical approach to contemplation. Today is a good day for reverie. What is your favorite way to daydream? Try to make that happen.
Monday, July 9. Cue the trumpets; Monday starts with a bang, or maybe a hangover if the Pisces energy led us down the path of overindulgence yesterday. The Moon moving into Aries today triggers the Pluto/Uranus square, as well as inciting a little confrontation with Mars in Libra. The energy is much more prickly today. Yes, Aries is really good at brushing off past mistakes and taking another stab at a problem, but Aries is also prone to impulsivity, acting before thinking. This may be a day when we do more of that than is good for us.
July 10 – Last Quarter Moon: Evaluating. Emotional awareness is a really important skill. People usually fall somewhere along the scale of either understanding the world through emotional cues or through rational logic. Some people fall into one camp or the other. Some do a little of both. Today, we have the opportunity to notice our own preference along this continuum. It could be a very emotional day and one where we may try to solve problems rationally when there is no rational way to approach them. It is important to let feelings have their expression. These too, help us to know where we want to go next as well as evaluate where we have been.
Wednesday, July 11. Early this morning, while most of us are sleeping, our impulsivity meets our sense of responsibility. Uh oh. Or, yay! Depending on your point of view. It is good to let grounded accountability give us a reality check today as we wake up to sobering realities. This evening, the Moon moves into earthy Taurus and some of us will be quite relieved. Perhaps we said or did things while the Moon was in Aries that we now regret. Well, the retrograde period of Mercury coming up on Saturday, will give us plenty of opportunity to redo those things.
Thursday, July 12. There is strength underneath the shifting currents of life. We most likely will already be feeling the tremors of the Uranus station that happens tomorrow. The unexpected, chaotic, and brilliant insights of Uranian thought are infecting the atmosphere today. For some, this will be over stimulating, for others it will be exhilarating. For everyone, it will be good to anchor into the Taurus Moon embodied strength to help us through the day.
Friday, July 13. Friday the 13th is here. According to lore, the reason that the number 13 is considered unlucky is due to the Norse idea that the 13th guest at a dinner party is the unwelcomed one. Uranus also is attuned to being the outsider in the group, often unwelcomed or excluded. Let’s notice where we feel we are the oddball in the group and celebrate our differences today. Let’s turn this superstition on its head and welcome in the stranger. We have a lot to learn from them.
July 14—Balsamic Moon: Surrendering. The Moon returns to Gemini, where it was at the start of this lunar month. We’ve had an extra dose of this mutable air sign, and now the ruler of Gemini— Mercury—stations retrograde. There is a beautiful synchronicity to that, something I love about astrology. So, Mercury gets to lead us out of the Gemini cycle and of course, does it walking backwards. Mercury is in Leo, so we pay extra attention to the Leo desires in all of us during this retrograde period. This desire is to know that our gifts are welcomed and valued by others. Think how the Sun fills us with vitality. Leo also wants to share that kind of vitality with others. It isn’t easy to live a life of wholeheartedness, but it is important that we try. Will you dare to change your mind (a good Mercury retrograde practice) about a shame-based belief you have about your inherent value? Venus helps us in this work too. Still in Gemini, Venus offers integration through the path of love. How exquisite!
Tonight, the Sun in Cancer squares Saturn in Libra. As the Moon wanes through its final phase of the month, we have the opportunity to compost fear, reactivity, and shame over mistakes made and turn toward the lasting benefit of living in balance. When we acquire that inner harmony, we add beauty to our homes, hearth, and kin.