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.

“May truths be told, and accountable amends delivered, with humble and earnest commitment to face and compost the pain into a life sustaining love.”
From Full Moon Magic in the realm of Whole Time: a spell-poem-prayer by Rain Crowe

The line above is from a longer spell-poem-prayer written by a friend and powerful magic worker for the recent Full Moon in Gemini. The spell-poem-prayer is part of a larger intention being held and worked in my spiritual tradition, the Reclaiming Tradition, in response to racism, the threat to Black lives and livelihood, and to a broken justice system. We live in a time of activism. More and more people are realizing that change needs to happen and are willing to do something about it. Not everyone will show up in the same way or about the same issues, but as I wrote last week many of us are standing at the frontlines, “whether it is on the streets facing a line of armed police, or whether it is an oppressive work situation, or whether it is the voice of shame in our own thoughts.” The tide of change has been building for quite some time. A wave is breaking this month with another square between Uranus in Aries and Pluto in Capricorn on December 14. This is the sixth of seven times this transit will take place. The first of these paradigm-changing aspects occurred June 2012; the last will be March 2015. Many astrologers have written about this signature transit of the early 21st century. The Uranus/Pluto exchange is part of a much longer cycle, which began in the mid-sixties when these planets came together in a conjunction. The entire cycle won’t end until the next conjunction of Uranus and Pluto, which happens in 2104. Within this big evolutionary cycle, smaller cycles move us along the path of transformation. The lunar cycle in Sagittarius* is a pivotal influence just at the right moment to move many more of us into action.

May truths be told.” The current Sagittarius lunar cycle is emphasizing the need to seek and express liberating truths. Some truths are hard to hear. Some are ripe for hearing. The Full Moon of this lunar cycle was a time to break through barriers, find authentic curiosity, and learn from a greater diversity of perception. As the Moon wanes this week and next, we have the opportunity to use these discoveries to make new inroads into outmoded ways of thinking. Collective ingenuity is at a highpoint. Transits involving Mercury this week create a fertile field of new solutions and new ways to approach old problems. Jupiter in Leo stations retrograde, making the impact of this expansive planet even stronger. As the ruler of Sagittarius, Jupiter’s station has a significant impact on this lunar cycle. In Leo, Jupiter asks us to tap into solar creativity. The Sun is the source of liberating truth. We are invited to let our lights shine. Acknowledge the brilliance of those who inspire you. Feed the life-affirming stories that create “life sustaining love”. If fire is a resource of energy, this week we have the opportunity to harness more of it and learn to use it wisely.

Forecast for December 7, 2014 – December 13

Moon enters Cancer 11:34 am CST

Sunday, December 7. Did the Full Moon ruffle your feathers? As we shiver and shake our way through this cycle’s illumination, notice where your learning edge is right now. The Full Moon in Gemini emphasizes the ways we learn and communicate. The breakthroughs are around perspective. When the Moon moves into Cancer today we tap into how we are feeling about this. Our attention moves inward and this change in focus helps us attend to our whole selves. Conceptual leaps need to be balanced with emotional self-care. A trine between the Moon and Neptune invites us to slow down and listen to the wisdom of the heart.

Moon in Cancer

Monday, December 8. This is a day of contrasts. It can become a day of wholeness if we can balance exterior and interior experience. The Moon in Cancer stresses emotional needs. This can provoke short tempers or a need to tune out discord. Spending time at home with those who feel like family can help to even things out. On the other hand, Mercury joins with the Sun today in Sagittarius offering more insight and illumination from shared truths. Jupiter in Leo stations retrograde today. The quest for meaning is strong, especially in the realm of personal gnosis. Conflicts could arise based on differences of opinion. To make things even more interesting, the Moon triggers the nearly exact square between Uranus and Pluto. This could be a day of tipping points. What are you noticing at your frontline of change?

Moon enters Leo 9:14 pm CST

Tuesday, December 9. Bring order to your home. You could even extend that intention to those parts of your life that you want to feel more homey and supportive. The trine between the Moon in Cancer and Saturn in Scorpio is the only significant aspect. After a few days of big energy, this is a perfect opportunity to chill and recoup. Notice what you need from the “home place.” Saturn helps us create more structure to support those needs.

Moon in Leo

December 10—Disseminating Moon: Sharing. In regards to personal truth, where do you stand right now? Being uncertain is not a sign of failure. It might even be a sign that things are shifting for you. The Sagittarius lunar cycle is a chance to observe the motivating force of belief. Beliefs can be dangerous and can be liberating. How do we discern the difference? This phase of the Moon is the beginning of turning our insights into concrete forms. If you’ve discovered your guiding star this lunar cycle, ask yourself how you will share it with others. Truth is like a brilliant fire. It can be incredibly appreciated and incredibly destructive. Yet, the tide of change that is moving us quickly forward may be asking us to act before we have perfect visions, perfect flames. If this is so, what is the essence of truth that will guide you?

 The Moon in Leo opposes Mars in Aquarius. Impatience may be high. The conflict could be between the personal truth and collective truth. Balancing between these forces keeps us listening and growing. Venus enters Capricorn and takes her place in the sky as the Evening Star. Venus now adds a touch of pragmatic sociability to this cycle. We can use this influence to help us make connections with the right people who can help us achieve our goals. The emphasis in relationship will be on what works.

Moon in Leo

Thursday, December 11. The fire signs are concerned with identity and self-expression. Fire as an element gives instinctual awareness—the gut feeling when we know what we want and what we need to do to get it. Fire is creative and essential to life. When fire is strong in our charts, we have the ability to shake off failure and setbacks, to begin again. Sometimes fire is foolhardy, sometimes reactionary, and sometimes forgets to include others in the picture. All these fire qualities are strong today. The Moon in fire sign Leo made a trine to Uranus in fire sign Aries last night (CST). Today the same Moon trines the Sun and Mercury in fire sign Sagittarius and forms a conjunction with a stationary Jupiter in Leo. Tend to your flame; honor this essential element and its influence in your life.

 Moon enters Virgo 9:19 am CST

Friday, December 12. A final firework (after the last two days of the Moon in Leo) comes from a trine between Mercury in Sagittarius and Jupiter in Leo early in the day. This agreeable aspect between these two planets gives a lot of energy to communicating our truths. Get you message out there. We are less cautious under this influence, take a risk on speaking out. The energy shifts into Virgo mode as the day goes on. We become more interested in sweeping up the messes after firey exuberance. Nothing is ever perfect, but how can we make things just a little bit better? Pay attention to health. Fire signs can burn out. You may be feeling this just about now. Crafting and quiet contemplation could be a lovely way to end the week with the Moon in Virgo making a trine to Venus and seeking balance from Neptune.

Moon in Virgo

Saturday, December 13. The mutable sign emphasis today (Moon in Virgo/ Sun in Sagittarius) has us pondering the meaning of it all. Mutable signs are concerned with meaning and integration. Today’s aspects are quiet, tomorrow’s are not. Spend as much quiet time as you can today, seeking to understand what is happening in the world, in your life, and in your soul. What helps you center? What helps you release anxiety and excess energy? The holistic nature of a Virgo Moon asks us to focus on what supports wellbeing. The alchemy of that focus—an integration of mind and body—will help us know our next steps in this time of changing realities.

* Read about the beginning of the Sagittarius lunar cycle (November 22) on my blog

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