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 June 16, 2013 – June 22

All abuzz. How do you deal with the constant input and output of information surrounding every one of us? Information comes in all forms—electronic, conversation, books and newspapers, signs, facial expressions, the temperature in the room, the amount of sunlight or moonlight that may be present… Well, creating a list of all the information we are receiving consciously and unconsciously at every moment is too overwhelming. That’s the point, right? Information can be overwhelming and as most of us also know, it can be very exhilarating, like when we learn something that opens up a whole new way of being.

Some people define mindfulness as the practice of noticing our minds. When we go down that rabbit hole, we find everything—the things we love about ourselves and the things we hate. Practices that help us attain a state of equilibrium also help us in this terrain where thoughts quickly vacillate from one extreme to another. The mind loves polarities and doesn’t like to stick to one thing for very long either. This is possibly why Gemini, the Mutable Air sign of the Twins is the sign of mind—its nature, its development, its tricks, and its gifts.

“Distracted from distraction by distraction,” T.S. Eliot, Four Quartets

Gemini’s affinities for polarities teach us about consciousness. The current lunar cycle* begun in the sign of Gemini invites us to pay attention to our minds. Other planets are supporting this work. Mars in Gemini (May 31 – July 13) is driving us onward into a constant buzz of information and distraction. More importantly Jupiter has been in Gemini since June 2012. The big guy of the solar system is at the end of his journey through Gemini; this is the last few days of this transit. Jupiter enters Cancer on June 25. We’ve been in a major mind download for the past twelve months. Learning to manage our input and output levels has been a major piece of this transit. The practice of noticing our thoughts and finding a still point around which to find balance is an excellent way to use the gifts of Jupiter’s transit through Gemini, and an excellent way to live harmoniously with the constant buzz of information all around.

“At the still point of the turning world,” T.S. Eliot, Four Quartets

Notice these still points this week. The Moon is waxing through its challenging phases. We are busy working on improvements. Minds can overload. The emphasis on water signs this week shifts into Scorpio. Gemini and Scorpio don’t necessarily see eye to eye, so we will feel the tension seeing and not wanting to see the shadows. The story of Edward Snowden, who revealed the NSA surveillance practices, invites us to look at the interplay between hidden information and revealed information. The price of bringing the hidden out into the world can be great. That drama is unfolding right now.

Forecast June 16, 2013 – June 22

Moon enters Libra 8:18 pm**
June 16—First Quarter Moon: Manifesting.
The Moon in Virgo earlier today squares the Sun in Gemini creating this phase where we encounter challenges to the manifestation of intention. Virgo and Gemini make an interesting pair. They are both ruled by the same planet, Mercury, but they have distinctly different points of view. Virgo challenges Gemini intention by asking these types of questions: Is it useful? Can it be systemized? What are the small steps that will get me there? Who will do the work? Although these questions may not seem like much fun, they help ground us in the true potential of this cycle.

Chiron stations retrograde in Pisces. Once again, our hearts are called to open, even as we are immersed in mental activity. Chiron reminds us of the healing that is needed and asks us to act as healers in the world.

Moon in Libra
Monday, June 17.
Find that balancing still point today if you can. The Libra Moon helps but it also contacts the square between Uranus and Pluto too. We’ll be hard pressed to find any stillness or peace today even if we want to. Mars is sextile to Uranus—time to make some changes in the status quo. When the Moon trines Mars later in the day we are eager to connect with others in friendly, fun ways.

Moon in Libra
Tuesday, June 18.
Any lingering tension today is influenced by the effects of miscommunication or a sense that emotional needs are not being met. But you have lots of resources for solving these problems. The mind is comforted by the balancing actions of a Libra Moon. What restores a sense of harmony in your life? Cultivate beauty and you will be rewarded with insight and peace.

Moon enters Scorpio 1:30 am
Wednesday, June 19.
Things get more soulful the next two days with the Moon in Scorpio. Gemini mutability chafes at the fixed stare of Scorpio. However, there is something very seductive about the combination of these points of view. If you are a Gemini-type who laments never being taken seriously, take lessons from Saturn in Scorpio today. A vast reservoir of depth and intensity resides in each and every one of us. The Moon links the trine between Saturn and Neptune further enhancing a feeling of spiritual inspiration. Into this mix, we add the sparkle of the Gemini Sun meeting Jupiter. Stay open to paradox, complexity, and surprising insight. Can you take all this internal and external revelation and apply it to acts of compassion and healing in the evening hours?

Moon in Scorpio
June 20—Gibbous Moon: Perfecting.
At the beginning of this lunar cycle, the interaction between Air signs and Water signs inspired me to make an intention about integrating my heart and mind. What are you noticing about your intention? This phase of the Moon asks us to stretch out of our comfort zones. It really isn’t about attaining perfection as much as it is about what happens when we reach further. The continuing paradox between Gemini and Scorpio is the stretching agent for this cycle. Mercury and Venus in Cancer trine the Moon and form an exact conjunction with each other. This is a seed moment for mind and heart. Pay extra attention to the home fires. How does your home life support or impede your intention for more integration? This is a good time to make changes in your home that bring dynamic balance to relationships. Be curious about another’s experience.

Moon enters Sagittarius 3:31 am
June 21—Summer Solstice.
Daylight hours peak in the Northern Hemisphere as the Sun enters Cancer and summer begins. This is a good moment to take a breath. Mid-summer, Jupiter and Mars will spark the square between Uranus and Pluto, but for now we can work on the small things in our lives that bring wholeness and joy. The chart for the Solstice is graced with the conjunction between Mercury and Venus in a trine with the Moon (see yesterday’s forecast). The season of Cancer is the storehouse time. It is the time to store up the sunshine, fresh food, summer adventures, and relaxation in preparation for fall and winter when we’ll appreciate the resources. The focal point for this storage is the place we call home. Home base feeds us when we are stretched. Pay attention to this resource. All the tensions of this lunar cycle (the stretching between Air and Water) are still present. But they are not overwhelming if we find that still point amidst the turning.

Moon in Sagittarius
Saturday, June 22.
With only one aspect, an opposition between the Moon and Mars pre-dawn in the Central Time Zone, this a great day to enjoy the adventurous Sagittarius Moon. Yes, we are feeling the peaking energy of the Full Moon, which will be exact tomorrow, but that doesn’t mean we can’t have a good time! Some Sagittarian suggestions for entertainment: a comedy club, outdoor adventure, or even an intriguing lecture or movie (science fiction would be good). What feels expansive to you? Give that your energy.

*See to follow along with the themes of this lunar cycle that began on June 8.

** All times are CDT.

Contact Teri at teri@starsdanceastrology and visit her website at