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.

Blossom-filled days have finally reached the place I live. I’m feeling relieved and delighted in the beauty around me. The transition between winter and spring this year was harder than usual. It hasn’t helped that we have been dealing with difficult transits recently—eclipses, a grand cardinal cross involving the 5th of seven exact squares between Uranus and Pluto, and a debilitated Mars moving retrograde through Libra are some of the stressors. I’ve written about these transits for the last two months, so I won’t go into a big explanation about them right now. Here’s the gist: We moved through a difficult time of transition the last couple of months and have more or less come through to the other side. This is a good moment to take our bearings. Exhale into the last days of the Taurus lunar cycle. The next inbreath comes at the Gemini New Moon on May 28.

Earth, through the sign of Taurus, had been the teacher and the gift-giver during the lunar cycle* ending this week. Earth has its own methods for processing change. Did you notice the power of compost and regeneration? This month, I suspect I have developed more trust in this process. I’ve learned I don’t have to control it. Showing up for the challenges of change with integrity (another earthy quality), I can simply surrender to the inevitable processes of death and rebirth.

Another gift: not having to over think it. Taurus teaches about simplicity—knowing when enough is enough. Gratitude naturally bubbles up from this awareness. This in itself is another transformative power offered by the gift-giving Earth.

I like moving forward. The longer and sweeter days of spring are beckoning. This Gemini season is expansive. There is much to learn and experience, however I want to take one last moment to reflect before moving on. On the other side of difficult transitions like we’ve just experienced, we benefit from anchoring into our bodies the simple, yet powerful blessings of Taurus. There is healing balm here. Here, there is wisdom to get us through future times of change and challenge.

Forecast– May 25, 2014 – May 31

Moon enters Taurus 4:27 pm CDT
Sunday, May 25. Early morning activities are energetic and pleasant. An Aries Moon makes favorable contacts with Venus and Mercury. People are feeling social. That energy may peak early, however. The Taurus Moon in the early evening (CDT) encourages more sensual experiences. The Moon returns to the same sign that began this lunar cycle. The old Moon energy tones down the expansiveness of the morning. Don’t be surprised if you crave more quiet or solitude over the next two days. Our bodies are integrating the experiences of the Taurus lunar cycle. Take care of yourself.

Moon in Taurus
Monday, May 26. Drink in the pleasure of spring. This morning, the Moon favorably contacts Neptune. We may prefer to stay in bed a little later and keep dreaming. But if you do need to get up, give yourself space to listen to your heart, your spirit, or your gods. Mystery is speaking. Later when the Moon trines Pluto, we feel the strength of earth bolstering us. What is the take away lesson of this lunar cycle for you? Find a way to honor that insight with a concrete action. Plant a seed.

Moon enters Gemini 11:47 pm CDT
Tuesday, May 27. Let yourself drift a bit today. Rather than fight it, try to step between the worlds. The very last day of a lunar cycle, which happens to also have a void-of-course Moon, is not a time to try and muster a lot of energy toward new beginnings. Honor the past, find pleasure in the Earth, feed your senses, putter around making something but without much attachment to outcome—all these things could feel richly rewarding today. The soil has been prepared; take a moment just to feel the expectancy of what that garden will produce.

Moon in Gemini
May 28—New Moon: Dreaming. The lunar cycle begins today with a Gemini inbreath. Gemini just may be the airiest of the air signs. Because it is a mutable sign, Gemini is expert at shapeshifting, delights in learning, and craves sharing information. The sign of the Twins evokes all types of polarities and the dance between them. Like a dandelion seed floating on the breeze, Gemini gets somewhere by being carried by the air. It can look like there isn’t a plan, but that is the tricky nature of this sign. The plan is the process itself. Breathe in. Molecules in that breath connect us to very formation of this planet. Breath out. We’ve just participated in a grand, and impossibly complex moment of co-creation. Breathing has impact. Effort can take many forms.

What will you dream into being this lunar cycle? How will you be inspired by the mysteries of breath and thought? After the gravity of the last lunar cycle, it’s possible that the most profound thing we could do now is lighten up. An inbreath. A mutable moment. Geminis are often not taken seriously, but that doesn’t mean that the Gemini superpower isn’t incredibly important anyway. We can either think that floating from thought to thought is just a pleasant way to spend a spring day, or we can think we are keeping the very fabric of reality in place; it doesn’t matter. Gemini will still do what Gemini does best. Let that breath fill you. Then let it go. Another breath is on its way.

First things first. In the chart for the New Moon, Mercury, the ruler of Gemini is at the last degree of that sign and is preparing to turn retrograde in just a few days on June 7. Mercury will retrograde and then move forward again while in Gemini from June 17 through July 12. All the ways we can develop an appreciation for Gemini during this lunar cycle will help us make the best use of this retrograde transit. Yes, sometimes Mercury retrograde can upset the cart, so to speak, but think of all the gifts. New perspectives. Refined communication tools. Serendipitous ingenuity. A chance to repair computers…to lose and find objects…to develop a sense of humor… All of this is possible.

Second things second. In the New Moon chart, Mars has just stationed direct and is in challenging aspect to Uranus and Pluto. Later in the lunar cycle, these aspects will become exact. This is the final act of the grand cardinal cross aspect pattern of the last few months. All the time we’ve spent reflecting on relationships, justice, and balance may now be applied with bold action. It will be a good idea to keep in touch with an intention of compassion and restraint this month as we do so.

Fortunately, a grand water trine will help us to be more emotionally centered as long as we are willing to apply ourselves to that intention. Sometimes a grand trine, which means all the signs of one element are activated, can be a wasted opportunity unless we consciously work with it. During this airy season, water helps to ground us back into responsibility in our relationships. We don’t want to hurt others by distracted detachment. The planets in this trine are Saturn in Scorpio, Jupiter in Cancer, and Chiron in Pisces. Saturn helps give form to our hopes for healing and hearth connections. This grand water trine will last until the Full Moon on June 13.

The Sun and Moon in Gemini form an exact square to Neptune in Pisces. We will have to watch out for the easy option of escapism this month. When we manage to return to our bodies (remember, this is the gift of the last lunar cycle in Taurus), we experience useful as well as transcendent states of spiritual connection. Magic is all around us. This is not an illusion if it reminds us of our human obligations to all of life.

Venus enters Taurus this evening for the next three weeks. Let the beauty you love, be what you do.

Moon in Gemini
Thursday, May 29. There is a tendency to drift today. Remember the dandelion seed floating on the air? How are you like that seed today? Know yourself. Do you let the wind take you or do you need to keep hold of a grounding cord? Play with minor adjustments. See what happens next. Stay curious and accountable.

Moon enters Cancer 9:13 am CDT
Friday, May 30. The watery sides of our natures are emphasized as the Moon enters Cancer. Mercury encourages tender-hearted communication. Here’s the deal. If you are an airy type, the energy of the last couple of days may have tempted you to act without thinking about how others might feel. Now you are reminded of that mistake. Be willing to admit you made one. If you are the one with hurt feelings, it may help to try and lighten up a bit. But don’t be afraid of your feelings. The grand water trine from Saturn, Jupiter, and Chiron is asking for emotional honesty.

Moon in Cancer
Saturday, May 31. Some hens come home to roost today. Thoughts and actions have impact. Can we accept responsibility for our relationships even if we don’t feel we did anything wrong? The Sun trines newly-direct Mars in Libra. We are energized to act, especially in the realm of thought and word. The Moon’s agenda is in the realm of emotional experience. Hurt feelings surface. We may notice how the qualities of mind and heart sometimes don’t easily mesh. However, Mars helps us negotiate if we are willing to be fair to all sides.

*The Taurus lunar cycle began on April 29 at the New Moon. Read more about the beginning of this lunar cycle on my Starsdance blog

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