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.

Forecast January 13, 2013 – January 19 

This lunar cycle, begun in the sign of Capricorn,* helps us to get in touch with our desires for mastery. The goat part of Capricorn’s mythical animal, the Seagoat, climbs a personal mountain towards excellence and authority. (We will look at the fish part of this animal later.) Yet, this journey toward excellence is not simple. A lot of conflicting emotions can come up. Shame is one of them.

Is shame actually fear of mastery? The root of the word “shame” comes from the Proto-Indo-European languages meaning “to cover.” You know the heat of embarrassment that enflames your cheeks and makes you want to hide your head? Yes, that kind of cover; that is shame. Shame only comes up around something we care about deeply. So, why cover it? Why hide from our own authority by covering up our gifts and aspirations? I’ve noticed in myself an impulse to hide my deepest longings until I can get over the shame I feel for aiming high. The shaming questions: How dare I? Who do I think I am? Brash, bold, outright longing belongs to the realm of mastery. Without it, we sell ourselves short, bury our potential, and cut ourselves off from energizing forces of life that help us achieve mastery. My guess is that it doesn’t have to be this hard.

As the Moon waxes this week, let’s use that light to brazenly reveal our desires for mastery. The first steps may be to admit to our selves that such longing exists. Brene´ Brown is my favorite writer/speaker on the subject of shame. Check out her wonderfully inspiring Ted Talks at She speaks about the research she’s done of the folks who live lives that aren’t saddled by crippling shame. She has found that these people share a quality: wholehearted vulnerability. By this she means risking being seen for what we most desire, who we really are.

Venus is the star of this week’s transits. Venus rules our connectivity—how we relate, what attracts us, and is attractive in us. Here is an interesting bit of information from Brown’s Ted Talk. She defines shame as the fear of disconnection from others. We fear that if others see the shameful thing inside us—like that brazen desire for mastery—we will not be worthy of connecting with others. We’ll be rejected.

Venus reflects the part of us that wants to please. This quality can either aid or hinder us as we encounter the shame demons inside. The desire to be connected can help us achieve that vulnerable wholeheartedness that Brown talks about. Yet, the fear of rejection can deflect us from our worthy goals of mastery. Through the Venus transits this week, I invite you to invoke the aspects of this goddess that inspire you to risk exposure and claim your heart’s desire.

Moon in Aquarius
Sunday, January 13. The Moon joins Mars in Aquarius at 2:37 am** as its last aspect of the entire day. This means the Moon is void-or-course (VOC) all day. I don’t consider VOC Moons to be problematic. In fact, I like the opportunity to pay attention to the difference in energy on such days in comparison to the days that the Moon makes several contacts. A lot of distracting noise gets cancelled out and we get to focus on just this one thing: The Moon is in the Fixed Air sign, Aquarius, and it reverberates with Mars passion all day. Considering that we are also in the waxing new phase of the Moon, we will want to take action, begin new things, especially in the realms of ideas and communities. The caution with a VOC Moon: Be extra mindful of what you attempt to initiate today. It pays to let awareness guide action rather than the other way around.

Moon enters Pisces 4:49 am
January 14—Crescent Moon: Beginning. Now, both the urge and the support for beginning new things are aligned. Go for it. Because the Moon is in Pisces, our feelings play a big role in what we decide to begin this lunar cycle. 

The Venus aspects today give us the opportunity to shift shame into wholehearted vulnerability. How will you expose yourself today in the realm of mastery? What do you want to be known for? What do you want to be loved for?

Venus in Capricorn contacts Chiron in Pisces with a sextile aspect, then forms a quincunx aspect to Jupiter in Gemini. Chiron and Jupiter are approaching a square aspect to each other, exact tomorrow. The possibility to be stressed by feelings of exposure and vulnerability are high, yet there is clear benefit too. How wonderful it feels to risk showing our true desires and to meet acceptance and support from others. What a gift it is to be seen and accepted. If you don’t find this support in your life today, it is time to search for the people who will love you for who you are. We also get to be those supportive people for others who are coming out of hiding. Welcome true vulnerability in your self and others today.

Moon in Pisces
Tuesday, January 15. Although the Moon is not void-of-course today, it only makes one aspect: a sextile to Mercury in Capricorn. Mercury is our ally of commitment to mastery today. What truth needs speaking? With support from the Moon, this realization may come from dreams, intuition, or ideals.

Moon enters Aries 10:07 am
Wednesday, January 16. We step from the dreamy realms of Pisces into action and reaction today. We may feel tested. Venus conjoins Pluto this evening but we’ll feel the passion earlier as the Moon enters Aries. Will we be liked if we show our true selves? Not always. Today the test is to find the reason to be true to ourselves even when we aren’t liked. Yet, the impulse to “go it alone” can be taken too far. So, the trick is to know when to do that and when to stay in relationship. Connection with others helps us to moderate the behaviors that can get in the way of our mastery. There is no such thing as perfection, only opportunity to learn.

Moon in Aries
Thursday, January 17. Let’s just say, all that was true yesterday is true today too. Another aspect with Venus gets thrown into the mix, however. Today Venus contacts Saturn in Scorpio by a sextile aspect. We are supported to move through our challenges. True friends and partners will support us in what we need to do to acquire authentic authority in our lives, even if it means telling us an uncomfortable truth. We feel strong enough to handle it.

Moon enters Taurus 7:36 pm
January 18—First Quarter Moon: Manifesting. This phase of the Moon is a good time to take definitive action on behalf of our New Moon intention. That doesn’t mean we won’t feel challenged. That is sort of part of the deal. This morning Mercury joins the Sun in its superior conjunction phase. Both planets are near the end of Capricorn. Some astrologers see the superior conjunction as the Full Moon phase of the Mercury/Sun cycle. When the illuminating rays of the Sun contact the creative mind of Mercury, what is realized? Confidence and commitment feed our dreams of mastery. Each of us deserves to live a life free of shame. Imagine that life into reality.

This evening the Moon moves into Taurus and we become mindful of sustainability. How do we sustain forward momentum? What relationship do we need to have to money, our bodies, and our values in order to manifest our intentions? And it is also a fun time to indulge in the pleasures of life. Notice what feels the most satisfying to you.

Moon in Taurus
Saturday, January 19. The darkest part of Winter is over. The Sun and Mercury enter Aquarius today and the focus of our lives turns toward the future and waking up as if from a long dream. Do you want to hit the snooze button or jump out of bed? There is a lot to do; yet the Moon in the Fixed Earth sign today may have us asking the question, What’s the hurry? Notice if you feel the tension or frustration between these two states of being. The Moon opposes Saturn and trines Venus. How important are your connections with others in helping you on your path of mastery? If you have been holding the intention of banishing shame on the path of mastery this lunar cycle, what have you noticed? 

* To follow along with the story of this lunar cycle, read the forecast for the New Moon on January 11.

** All times are CST.

Contact Teri at teri@starsdanceastrology and visit her website at


2 thoughts on “Follow the Moon: Astrology of intention and mindfulness

  1. ccsummer says:

    Truly spoke to me as I’ve been dealing with a strong sense of shame in the past couple of weeks. Also been dealing with a long-time friend whom I’m coming to see seems to enjoy “shaming” me for whatever reason–perhaps to distract herself from her own sense of shame. In my life I have the habit of putting up with “friends” who are unkind, even cruel–their criticisms are harsh and do not seem geared toward helping me but in shaming me. I am quick to take such criticisms to heart and believe in my unworthiness. It can take me years to understand the dynamics of such relationships and break them off. I honestly thought I was over putting up with such relationships, but here I am once again. Thankfully I do have friends who honestly love me and accept me for who I am and offer loving support. Your analysis came to me exactly when I needed it.

  2. teriparsleystarnes says:

    Thank you, ccsummer, for your very thoughtful response. I am learning to be gentle with the shamed and shaming parts of myself. Seems to be a good thing to work on with a New Moon in Capricorn.

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