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.

Have you found your liberating truth during this Sagittarius lunar cycle? Have you broken your silence? Have you found a way to tell your truth? This has been my guiding intention for the Sagittarius lunar cycle*—to cultivate the liberating truth. This intention has been pulled and pushed, formed and reformed like a lump of clay since the New Moon. I suspect this forming and reforming will continue for a while. Here is the paradox: I am seeking a reliable truth that can help me anchor my visions for a more just world. Truth with a capital “T” feels like it should be eternal and immutable, but Sagittarius, the truth seeker, is a mutable fire sign. The mutable signs are good at trying on new ideas and weaving temporary threads of meaning. They’re also good at obfuscation, playing the trickster role, putting a mirror before us to get us to question what we are seeing. In other words, although the mission seems to be to find the Truth with a capital “T”, I might just have to accept the changeable, revelatory, small “t” truths I encounter everyday. Small “t” truths can trick us out of fundamentalism or places we are stuck. Small ‘t’ truths could teach me to laugh, wonder, and try again as I reach for and fail to grasp the ultimate capital “T” Truth.

Where are we now? In a hilarious twist of absurdity, we could be asking ourselves, “But what does it mean?” Exactly. Is it the journey or the destination that we need to be paying attention to here? Are either/or questions just another dead end? Should we stop this silliness or keep going down the path? Is truth, then, not a guide, and if not, what is? The Online Etymology Dictionary says this about the source and meaning of the word truth: Old English triewð (West Saxon), treowð (Mercian) “faith, faithfulness, fidelity, loyalty; veracity, quality of being true; pledge, covenant.” Keep these words in mind; they will come in handy later. They are a good collection of keywords for Sagittarius. How do you feel about these words? They can provoke a lot of feelings. These qualities, which are loaded with cultural messages, say a lot about fundamental beliefs and ways we think things should go. Judgment resides in these words. Wars have been fought for these words.

We are about to begin two and a half years of redefining what these words mean to us. Saturn will enter Sagittarius on December 23. [There will be shuffling back and forth between Scorpio and Sagittarius; Saturn returns to Scorpio June through September 2015, and then stays in Sagittarius until October 2017.] Saturn travels through a sign in about two and a half years, a good amount of time to do the work of recasting reality. Saturn likes to take things apart, access the value, discern what is working and what isn’t, and ultimately asks us to achieve a new level of mastery through hard work. This Sagittarius lunar cycle is a good opportunity to look at what we may be reassessing and redefining for the next few years. This is important. As we move past the revolutionary sparks flying from the Uranus/Pluto squares, which end in March 2015, we are encouraged to manifest the liberating truth that really works. Along the way, we will undoubtedly encounter the capital “T” truths that don’t get us any closer to liberation. If you’ve found a worthwhile vision this lunar cycle, you may reasonably expect to be working hard on that vision for the next few years. This is the long haul. Saturn is the planet that promises true success if we keep working. Will you?

Forecast for December 14, 2014 – December 20

Moon enters Libra 10:05 pm CST

December 14—Last Quarter Moon: Evaluating. I’ve heard some people frame the Black Lives Matter protest movement, sparked into new actions when the police officer who killed Michael Brown was not indicted at the beginning of this lunar cycle, as the beginning of a new civil rights era. Today’s Uranus/Pluto square is the beacon calling us into new revolutionary action. This movement feels different under this transit. Things are shaking lose and most importantly people are waking up. Today’s square between these two gods of change is the sixth of seven exact transits, which have occurred since June of 2012. That this transit happens during this Sagittarius lunar cycle is significant. At the New Moon in Sagittarius a seed was planted for the truth that frees us. Fires of change and visions of truth infuse this revolutionary time. All cycles have their ebbs and flows. Rather than be deterred by these inevitable shifts, we can begin to notice how the shifts can help us to manifest lasting transformation. This phase of the Moon is a time to step back and evaluate. If you find it is a time to rest and recharge, then listen to that message. What creates a lasting transformation? What have you learned? What is missing?

The Moon in Libra encourages our desire for justice. The next two days, this desire is strong. The trine between the Sun and Jupiter, both in fire signs, is a boost to energy and passion. A sextile between earthy Venus in Capricorn and transcendent Neptune in Pisces opens heart and intuition channels in a productive way. Notice how important it is to continue to keep these channels open during times of big change. Perhaps this channel was closed when Greenpeace activists decided to put a huge sign on the Nazca plains in Peru damaging a sacred site.

Moon in Libra

Monday, December 15. The Moon in justice-loving Libra is encouraged by rebellious Mars in Aquarius to not back down in the fight for a new world. The Moon opposes Uranus in Aries and squares Pluto in Capricorn this evening (CST). We may see the affects of this triggering aspect today and tomorrow. What happens when you are triggered by someone else’s anger? Notice this response. We can step back and let this anger be expressed without feeling that it is being directed at us. Injustices have built for a long time. A necessary step to correcting those injustices may be to allow the rage to break like a wave hitting the shore. The long-term vision can still be for peace. Temporary imbalance could help us move toward more sustainable states of justice.

Moon in Libra

Tuesday, December 16. Mercury enters Capricorn today. While Mercury was in Sagittarius the last two and a half weeks, words have been flying across the Internet and wherever else we’ve wanted to share our truths. While Mercury is in Capricorn, words take on weight. Perhaps the quality of what we share becomes more important than the quantity. Time to turn inward or listen to our elders and build a foundation for belief.

Moon enters Scorpio 8:52 am CST

Wednesday, December 17. The waning energy of this lunar cycle is noticeable when the Moon enters Scorpio today. Waning energy is a time to rest and reflect. The sextile between the Moon and Mercury in Capricorn adds to the introverted nature of the next few days. What is the essential thing to share right now? This is a good aspect to use for thoughtful communication. Go deeper and listen more. The trine between the Moon and Neptune supports empathy.

Moon in Scorpio

December 18—Balsamic Moon: Surrendering. The square between the Moon in Scorpio and Mars in Aquarius is a picture of the struggle between powers that want to control us and the powers that want to free us. On the surface, the choice seems obvious but astrology teaches me that every sign has an authentic desire that compels us to act. Scorpio uses its ability to operate behind the scenes and under cover to get its needs met. Aquarius uses intellect and an ability to lift everyone to a place of equality to get its needs met. As the Moon wanes into the last phase of this lunar cycle we are looking at power and politics in a new way. Truth is mutable but essential. What do you think now about the truth you seek? The Moon gets a boost from Pluto. We learn a lot by looking below the surface and it pays to wait and understand more before we act.

Moon enters Sagittarius 3:55 pm CST.

Friday, December 19. A big weekend for holiday parties gets off to a wonky start. The Scorpio Moon is not as outgoing and the contact of the Moon with Saturn has us feeling somber. When the Moon moves into Sagittarius, the main desire may be to blow off steam. This Sagittarius Moon is not the same Sagittarius Moon that began this lunar cycle. Notice the difference. Big experiences this month has made an impact. However, one of the great Sagitttarian gifts is an ability “to shake it off” as Sagittarian Taylor Swift sings and get back on the saddle. Forward! Be aware that the square between the Moon and Neptune could provoke overindulging in alcohol or other mood-altering substances. Be alert for drunken drivers.

Moon in Sagittarius

Saturday, December 20. What happens when Venus in Capricorn triggers the Uranus/Pluto square? We will find out today. Venus as the ruler of social interactions as well as wealth may impact relationships and/or the economy today. Women’s issues take center stage too. Venus becomes the instigator of revolution today. Mercury’s sextile to Neptune provides lovely, spiritual inspiration. Change is in the air; Mars in Aquarius forms a sextile to Uranus in Aries, and the Moon makes favorable contact with both Mars and Uranus. Truth and passion move us to action.

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

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