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 October 20, 2013 – October 26

The veil between the worlds is thinning. Many of us are familiar with this metaphor for the subtle shift in energy in this season (in the Northern Hemisphere) when life force returns to the root, when we honor our beloved dead, and prepare for winter’s fertile darkness. This is the season of death. Death’s realm is an invisible world hidden behind the veils most of the time. But death comes closer now, giving us the opportunity to notice its influence upon everything in this life. This week a conspiracy between the planets and the season asks us to hone our senses and deepen our awareness of the thinning boundaries between the visible and invisible worlds. Notably, the waning Moon returning to darkness, Mercury stationing retrograde in Scorpio, the Sun entering Scorpio, and the Moon later in the week entering sensitive Cancer to form aspects with every outer planet of change—all these events create a tone of opening to depth through emotion and intuition.

With ordinary perceptions suspended, we are able to sense into the differences and similarities between the visible – what we are paying attention to, and the invisible – what influences us yet is not seen. Especially with Mercury moving backwards, the differences between these worlds blur even more. Some things are invisible simply because we have not attuned to them yet. Science continues to reveal hidden connections. Observing nature, hidden worlds become visible. Does the other correlation apply here too? Does the visible world have influence on the hidden? How do we attune to that exchange? The thinning of the veils is about a lot of things, but the one I’d like to pay attention to this week is how to expand my sensory awareness to see more and to acknowledge more about the visible and the invisible realms.

The mysterious veil between seen and unseen impacts the work of this Libra lunar cycle.* I am working with an intention to live in balance, especially as that applies to my relationships. I am mindful that balance is not only a state I achieve as an individual. I am also subject to the vast forces of balance in the cosmos. Death is a balancing force; it is an exchange, just like every breath I take, between the visible and invisible worlds. I invite you to join me in opening to these sensations—Notice the veils between worlds with all your senses. Do you feel the thinning? How do you know? Notice the exchange between the visible and invisible. What part do you play in this balancing force?

Forecast October 20, 2013 – October 26

Moon in Taurus
Sunday, October 20.
This week we notice death, the inevitable force of transformation. The Moon in Taurus emphasizes the exchange between death and regeneration. Scorpio, the sign of death, and Taurus, the sign of rebirth, have an intimate partnership. These two signs are opposite each other in the zodiac. Notice the sweetness that death brings to life and the passion that life brings to death. Mercury is stationing, ready to turn retrograde tomorrow. Mercury, also known as Hermes, is the only god able to travel at will between the land of the living and the land of the dead. We are poised to take a mythic journey with Mercury as the guide between the worlds. The connection between the Moon and Jupiter give us hope that the journey will be a fruitful one.

Moon enters Gemini 11:14 am CDT
Monday, October 21.
The Moon in Gemini helps us play along with the shapeshifting shenanigans of Mercury stationing retrograde in Scorpio. Mercury rules Gemini, so the Moon in his native sign will give us a little more flexibility as we deal with reversals and surprises today. The mythic nature of this retrograde journey is strong. Mercury (or Hermes) is the psychopomp—the guide of souls traveling to the underworld. As the veils thin, he leads the way down into depth. We are invited to participate in this transformation. The Moon squares the opposition between Neptune and Mars, increasing the desire to see things on the mythic level. We struggle to find the practical way to use these feelings and insights. Perhaps the first step is to surrender.

Moon in Gemini
October 22—Disseminating Moon: Sharing.
What has changed in your life since the New Moon on October 4th? Even before the exact stationing of Mercury, which happened yesterday, I’ve noticed big shifts and surprises in emotional and relational states. I’ve been asked to adjust to big fluctuations that have challenged my sense of balance and conscious response that I want in my life and relationships. Now that Mercury is retracing his steps through that terrain, we get to review those experiences. The gifts we have to share from this cycle thus far come from doing this review and remembering what worked and what didn’t. With the Moon in Gemini, conversation may lead to insight. You never know when an idea you share with another will the truth that they needed to hear at that moment. Keep your ears open and notice the invisible connections that help us all find balance. Be willing to tend the web with heart and compassion.

Moon enters Cancer 10:36 pm CDT
Wednesday, October 23.
Where I live fall days can go from sunny and warm to cold and gloomy in an instant. We may live in different weather regions, but we all notice a sudden shifting and chilling today, no matter where we live. The veil between the visible and invisible worlds thins even more with the Sun moving into Scorpio. What are you noticing about the exchange between the visible and invisible worlds? We are becoming more sensitive. The Moon in Cancer later this evening encourages us to attune to the flow of emotion. Drink from the source of life and pass the gift to those on the other side of the veil.

Moon in Cancer
Thursday, October 24.
Opening to bigger awareness of the interconnection between the visible and invisible worlds, hearts also open. Here is the balancing challenge for today: hold this heart-centered awareness while at the same time adjusting to likely disruptions in the field. We are in a Mercury retrograde period and need to remember to flow with unforeseen events. Not everything unexpected is a disaster. Delight is possible too. The Moon in Cancer is trine to Neptune and sextile to Mars. These aspects encourage spiritual connection and insight. We also desire to find pragmatic ways to practice compassion. The Moon also contacts the tense square aspect between Uranus and Pluto. These two outer planets of change and transformation are nearing their next exact square on November 1. People are sensitive and perhaps more impatient than usual. Give yourself space when you need it.

Moon in Cancer
Friday, October 25.
This is a squishy, watery day. Home and family play a big role, even under circumstance that don’t seem to have anything to do with these things. The Cancer Moon takes us on a journey of memory into our childhoods; we then find ourselves responding to the present with those memories driving the bus. Compassion for self and others is important. The Moon is trine to wayward Mercury retrograding through Scorpio. Expect communication to work when we are aware of emotional cues. The Moon is also conjunct Jupiter, which is readying to turn retrograde at this degree in Cancer. We are feeling big heart and big messages from the heart. This may include defensiveness. Can you accept the message without taking it personally? The Sun is trine to Neptune. The ocean, literally and metaphorically, feels like a resource for healing. We don’t always need words to communicate.

Moon enters Leo 11:11 am CDT
October 26—Last Quarter Moon: Evaluating.
We’ve been swimming in the ocean for the last few days. The veils between the worlds have continued to dissolve. Where does this leave you on your lunar quest? Has this cycle been about balance and relationship for you? Or was it something else? We’ve been given a gift of expansive sensitivity. What will you do with this information? The Moon enters Leo and we look for the spark that brings joy, creativity, and acknowledgement from others. Notice the balance between wanting to share and needing to be fed. Too generous or too needy, we lose connection with others. Even though we may feel that the boundaries around self are dissolving while the veils dissolve, this does not have to be so. We are still distinct individuals. On this side of the veil, the living have a precious gift to share with the other side. Our living light is the gift. Let us treasure it..


* To read more about the Libra lunar cycle that began on October 4, go to

Contact Teri at teri@starsdanceastrology and visit her website at