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 November 24, 2013 – November 30

The week of Thanksgiving (in the U.S.) has always felt to me like a jolt to the system. After a soulful month of opening to the unseen world of the dark, the manic holiday season kicks into hyperdrive, trying its best to undo all the deep revelations we just experienced. Practices of mindfulness and intention help here a lot. Even though this pulsation between dark and light is natural, the way we often make this transition at this time of year seems more destructive to our well being than it has to be. The dark season of Scorpio* is followed by the expansive season of Sagittarius—there is a lot to discover and understand about the world of the living after we’ve had a journey with the dead—however, surely there is a more graceful way to do it than fighting over sale items in a discount store. With intention we can reclaim a meaningful way to return to the light of a new season after the dark of the preceding one. Our current transition into Sagittarius’ light happens under a waning Moon. It is important to factor this in when thinking about our own mindful transitions.

It isn’t as if being expansive and social are bad things. They aren’t at all. Some of us will dive into those experiences gratefully. Others, need a buffer between the experiences of the last few weeks and the time ahead. Pay attention to what you need.

The waning Moon is generally a time of reflecting on what we’ve experienced during the waxing phases. We long for meaning. At the beginning of the lunar cycle, we noticed the veils between the seen and unseen worlds thinning. With the extra impetus of a solar eclipse and Mercury transiting retrograde through Scorpio, we’ve had a chance to go deeper than we might have ordinarily. Even when we can’t put into words what the experience has meant, it is good to acknowledge that something has changed us. We’ve been touched by Mystery. There will be times this week when the interior experience will be pronounced. And the opposite is true too. Thanksgiving itself could be a time of illumination and release. The week ends with the Moon returning to Scorpio for the final days of the cycle—a perfect time to turn off external demands and be quiet, even if for just a moment.

Forecast November 24, 2013 – November 30

Moon in Leo
Sunday, November 24.
There’s a wild card element to the day. The Moon in Leo suggests we enjoy taking more risks today. At any rate, we feel like shaking things up a bit, just to see what happens. The Moon is void-of-course most of the day adding to a sense that we could get away with something that ordinarily we might not. Add to this a square between the Sun and Neptune and it could be that our judgment is just a little off. The dream leads us away. This could be an enchanting day. Find a little bit of magic for yourself.

Moon enters Virgo 6:11 am CST
November 25—Last Quarter Moon: Evaluating.
Did you wake up with a hangover (figuratively or literally) from yesterday’s fun? Don’t worry; the Moon in Virgo will help you put things back in order. However, don’t be too quick to sweep away the odd pieces that don’t seem to fit together. We have the opportunity to open and respond today in a way that brings resolution to a question or problem we’ve held for the last few weeks—since October 8th to be exact. That was the first time Mercury conjoined Saturn in Scorpio. Due to retrograde motion, the second time Mercury and Saturn came together was October 29. Today, the third pass brings an end to this particular journey through our shadows. In the Last Quarter phase of the Moon, we put the pieces together to give meaning to the whole. What is your meaning? Saturn encourages us to get serious. The work has been in communicating, opening to the past, feeling vulnerable about the future, and hopefully reaching a place of knowing ourselves better.  The opposition between the Moon in orderly Virgo and Neptune in dreamy Pisces adds another element of whimsy that could actually be hiding something much more profound.

Moon in Virgo
Tuesday, November 26.
If something’s been telling you to wait till today to put your Thanksgiving plans together, go shopping, clean the house, make those lists, then you were right. This is the day for that. But rather than feeling like drudgery, all those things contribute to a sense of accomplishment and satisfaction. Just remember—it isn’t about perfection! While you are being productive, give some thought to the meaning of the Thanksgiving season for you. What are you grateful for? How can you give back? What is important about family and home to you? These questions build over the next few days. These reflections help us shift from the dark time of reflection to the bright time of socializing and connecting in the holiday season.

Moon enters Libra 3:59 pm CST
Wednesday, November 27.
The predominant influence shifts to Venus in Capricorn today. With the Moon in Venus’ home sign, we become concerned with other people. Who do we want to see? Can our social interactions help our professional goals? How can we bring more charm and grace to a social gathering? Is the workload shared fairly? To make the most of the Thanksgiving break, try to flow with Libran balance through the next couple of days. With Mercury making happy aspects with the two benefics, Venus and Jupiter, conversation is lively and possibly very rewarding on many levels.

Moon in Libra
Thursday, November 28.
Thanksgiving is a really a hearth holiday. Abundance and gratitude are the blessings we honor. Jupiter and Venus are opposed each other influencing our perceptions of the hearth. Jupiter in Cancer asks us to reflect on what beliefs, dreams, and values infuse our hearths with possibility. Venus in Capricorn encourages us to pay attention to our non-negotiables in order to ensure lasting abundance. These two benefics, even in an opposition, can have a good effect on each other. They encourage balance and integration, a give and take between self-interest and helping others. Watch out for extreme positions; cultivate the middle ground. Even though the Libra Moon influences us to play nice with others, the tense aspects between the Moon, Uranus and Pluto may bring out passive-aggressive behavior even in the best of us. Don’t play games. Stick with what your heart feels.

Moon enters Scorpio 10:03 pm
November 29—Balsamic Moon: Surrendering.
The best way to align with today’s celestial seasonings may be to stay away from the malls and decide to “Buy Nothing”. Your soul will thank you. This phase of the Moon craves the quiet spaces where we are able to honor our journeys and release them back to the dark. Since this lunar cycle has been about embracing the dark, the best way to complete this work is by noticing the distractions around us and returning to the present. What is really valuable? In this time of gratitude, the timeless and valuable parts of our lives, which create connection and meaning can be to be recognized and honored. The dark journey gives us a special gift. What are you taking away?

The Moon moves into aspect with the opposition of Jupiter and Venus that was exact yesterday. Choices may seem black and white. What if you adopted the attitude of Yes/And instead, and entertained all possibilities? The Sufi poet, Rumi, described this state of mind as “a field, out beyond the ideas of right doing and wrong doing.” Step into that field.

Moon in Scorpio
Saturday, November 30.
Astrologer Caroline Casey works with the energy/metaphor of the Compassionate Trickster. On her website she describes her Trickster dedication this way: “cultivating eloquence, mythological literacy, metaphoric agility, the arts of blessing and storytelling—so that we be responsive agents of Trickster Redeemer cool, in a hot, reactive world.” What a great day to embrace the trickster and the compassionate parts of ourselves. The Sun is trine Uranus, encouraging change. The Moon is trine Neptune encouraging empathy. And the Sun is square to Chiron reminding us that everyone of us carries a transformative vulnerability that opens us to wisdom. Imagine this guiding your day.


*To read more about the intention of this lunar cycle and the Scorpio intention, visit:

Contact Teri at teri@starsdanceastrology and visit her website at