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– April 27, 2014 – May 3

Here is a simple prescription for working with the next lunar cycle: Fall in love again with the Earth. Regardless of all the other things the Taurus season can offer us for lessons and gifts, we simply can’t go wrong by expressing our unabashed love of the Earth in this lusty, fertile season. The Taurus lunar cycle begins with a Solar Eclipse/New Moon on April 29. Perhaps the best way to honor this moment is to let our bodies tell us what to do next. We have enormous wisdom residing in the cells and systems of our bodies. What if we believed that everything we need for a life of balance and beauty resides within us already? What if we dedicated ourselves to living as if we knew that?

Taurus is here to help us reclaim our body’s wisdom. As the fixed earth sign, Taurus is the guardian of earthy gifts. It is entirely appropriate in this season to invite these gifts into our lives—to fully enjoy Earth’s bounty, beauty, and renewal. These gifts become the source of ever-deepening relationship with the Earth. The law of exchange says that if I am given a gift, I am obligated to pass the gift along. This keeps the gift alive. If the Earth is a gift for me, to keep the gift alive I strive to become a gift for the Earth as well. Is my very being a treasure for the Earth? This question serves as my guide for this lunar cycle. If I live with this question for one lunar month, I will learn more about this relationship of exchange. I suspect that beauty trumps shame. What if my gift-giving came from expressions of devotion rather than shame? And what does my body already know about this?

A solar eclipse gives us unique opportunity to step into a new reality. We get to reboot the systems when the light goes out suddenly and then as suddenly returns. And we have a choice: We can step into this moment consciously with intention, or we can simply open to noticing what happens for us as we experience this system reboot. Both are good options. We’ve had very strong transits this spring already. We’ve been primed by these transits to open more widely to transformation and change. With the Taurus season, we anchor the continuing evolutionary journey to the sustainable foundations that will serve us over the long haul. This gets us back to our bodies, and the wisdom and support that our bodies give us. Where will you let your body’s wisdom take you this month? How will we embrace the miraculous dance of life and wonder that feeds a life-giving exchange with the Earth?

Forecast– April 27, 2014 – May 3

Moon in Aries
Sunday, April 27.
We are not out of the woods yet concerning the Cardinal Grand Cross that was a big feature of the Aries lunar cycle.* Although the planets involved (Mars, Jupiter, Uranus, and Pluto) are moving away from the exact square, the aftereffects will continue for several more weeks. Whenever the Moon transits through one of the Cardinal signs (Aries, Cancer, Libra, or Capricorn), it triggers the grand cross once again. That happens today with the Moon in Aries. Today and tomorrow are the last two days of the Aries lunar cycle. The Moon in its final phase encourages us to let go. This doesn’t mean give up. During this cycle, many of us took a risk to stick out our necks. Perhaps you dared to take a step into a Fool’s journey this month. Some may feel like they succeeded and others like they failed miserably. Success or failure isn’t the point. On a day that may feel challenging, find at least one way to celebrate that you tried at all. Let go of self-judgment. There will be plenty of time in the year ahead to make adjustments to the changes inaugurated during this cycle. The delight in this day comes from the conversation between the Sun in Taurus and Neptune in Pisces. Artistry, sensual enjoyment, spiritual inspiration, and reverent daydreams feed a deepening delight of the Earth.

Moon enters Taurus 9:23 am CDT
Monday, April 28.
Pay attention to styles of communication today. And pay attention to the source of conflict around those differing styles. Mercury in Taurus is quincunx to Mars in Libra today. Since both of these signs are ruled by Venus, we may find our differences manifesting around diverse Venusian themes like fairness and immutable certainty. There may not be a true moral high ground; we’ll just have to figure out how to get along anyway. Although the actual New Moon in Taurus does not begin until tomorrow, we may as well declare that the Aries cycle has given away to the new fixed-earth focused lunar cycle today. As I wrote in the week’s introduction, Here is a simple prescription for working with the next lunar cycle: “Fall in love again with the Earth.” Yes. That applies.

Moon in Taurus
April 29—New Moon: Dreaming. Solar Eclipse.
The brain is the biggest sex organ. Maybe you’ve heard this before. This month, I’m interested in seeing if it is true. The Taurus New Moon signals the renewal of fecund desires, no matter our gender or age. When the birds and bees are doing it we all feel it. Now, what does the brain have to do with this? A solar eclipse is like throwing a wild card into the lunar cycle. I could list the areas of life that pertain to Taurus, fertility being one of them, and invite everyone to follow a Taurean intention for the month. But with an eclipse, the real action may not be about typical Taurean themes. The real action may be about our perception of those themes. Our brains handle our perceptions. We have a chance to see the age-old story of sex in a new way. Here’s an idea: Let’s broaden the whole idea of what sex is, and then let’s make it sacred to boot. This extra potent New Moon could help us to step more fully into living this truth. I have a feeling that falling in love with the Earth again is a good place to start this exploration and sacred work. Will you join me?

The chart for the New Moon is dramatically patterned by the Cardinal Grand Cross, which was exact last week. Has this transit been a life-changer for you? With the Moon moving into the Taurus cycle, we can now become more rooted in making desirable changes last. Taurus holds embodied wisdom. Listening to our bodies, listening to the Earth, our questions receive answers. Healing balms are also available. Later this month, Saturn will play a bigger role in this healing. Saturn in Scorpio turns our gaze toward the gifts we receive through the dying process. From Scorpio compost we gain the power of regeneration in the spring season of Taurus. The primal exchange between death and life anchors the changes that are afoot in the world and in our personal lives. I think of this primal exchange as the force of sex. The more available we are to the energy of the life-death-rebirth cycle, the better we can be gifts for the Earth.

Moon enters Gemini 3:56 pm CDT
Wednesday, April 30.
Springtime reminds us of the importance of our pollinators. Without them spring’s promise is barren. What can you do to support these vital beings? With the Moon entering Gemini today, literal and metaphorical pollinators are more noticeable. Notice social connections, interesting conversations or essential information received today. Mutable signs, like Gemini, invite us to notice synchronicity. There are so many levels to reality and they are all feeding this moment of opportunity. Pay attention; unexpected connections could be important seeds for this lunar cycle just getting underway. Mercury, the ruler of Gemini, makes favorable connections with Jupiter and Chiron. We do not have to abandon our sensitive hearts as we go forward with our lives.

Moon in Gemini
Thursday, May 1.
Beltane. Pagans celebrate the fertility and gifts of the Earth on Beltane. Since Beltane falls during the waxing phase of the Moon this year, our celebrations are infused with action and desire to manifest a new reality. Many devoted people are working hard to do the right thing by the Earth. Let this Beltane be a blessing for the hands that do the work of rebalancing our relationship with the Earth.

The Moon remains in Gemini and we continue to be the pollinators for the future we are hoping to manifest. The day starts (CDT) with significant dreams coming from the Moon’s contact with Neptune. The rest of the day is dynamic. We are encouraged to act on visions of change. The paradox is symbolized by the Sun in the embodied sign of Taurus quincunx to Mars in the conceptual sign of Libra. Since it will be easy to let our thoughts take over today, remember to bring abstract ideas into concrete and sustainable form. Not that easy, but a good exercise in meaningful relationship.

Moon in Gemini
May 2—Crescent Moon: Beginning.
The questions we’ve been holding this lunar cycle about listening to our body’s wisdom, about being a gift for the Earth as the Earth is a gift for us, and about honoring sexual energy as sacred, begin to take root. In the life cycle of a plant, the seedling grows down before it can grow up. This phase of the Moon is the beginning of what we will manifest by our intentions. A lot is still going on under the surface, but not for long. With the Moon in Gemini for another day, mental energy is strong. We are interested in tasting a variety of sweet nectars. It is hard to stay still. Amidst that stimulation, Mercury (the ruler of Gemini), which is currently in the sign of Taurus, opposes Saturn in Scorpio. Although this aspect may seem to put extra weight upon a lighthearted day, this aspect is actually very valuable for tapping the potent energy of the life-death-rebirth cycle. Compost is the metaphor for gathering power. What ideas need to transform through a death-like experience? What new growth is visible because you have already done this work? Relationships, study, and expression are empowered.

Venus leaves Pisces to transit Aries for the next three and a half weeks. We’ll have much less patience for injustice. Over these three weeks, Venus will aspect the planets in the grand cross. We’ll see some fireworks. Get ready to get mad.

Moon enters Cancer 1:43 am CDT
Saturday, May 3.
After the recent days of Gemini Moon, the Moon’s ingress into Cancer could feel like a necessary exhalation. The relationship between the signs of Cancer and Taurus is supportive to what we need for security and stability. With the Sun in a harmonious trine to Pluto (both in earth signs), this support is cemented by a sense of empowerment. Bring this solid strength to your hearths. We can tend more than one. I think of the hearth as my heart’s home. I invite my beloveds to gather there and am happy to offer the food that sustains us all. Where does your heart feel at home? Give blessings to that hearth.


*The Aries lunar cycle began on March 30 at the New Moon. Read more about the beginning of this lunar cycle on my Starsdance blog at:

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