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.

Remember when I said last week “it would be easy to skip over the Pisces lessons and jump right into Aries boldness this month”? The next two weeks are what I was referring to. This lunar cycle* beginning on the boundary between Aquarius and Pisces gives us the opportunity to explore the edge between bold action and open receptivity. The edge between Aquarius and Pisces and the next edge of Pisces and Aries reminds us of the need to honor and include our whole selves as we move forward into change. Here is another way to think about this edge: What conscious way will you approach the big decisions and changes you are planning for your life? How much do you want to leave it to the whims of emotion and how clearly do you want to see where you are heading?

It is impossible to be absolutely clear at all times, and there is something to say for leaping forward with just a feeling to spur us on, but if this alarms you in any way, there is a reason. It feels like we are flying blind and naked right now. Pisces (where the Sun is, along with Neptune and Chiron) can be a befuddling sign. That’s really its job: to dissolve away the encrustations of the past that hamper a clear emergence into Spring (otherwise known as Aries). With so much Aries energy right now (Venus, Mars, Uranus), we could jump the gun, pushing ahead into emergence when we really need to spend more time in the chrysalis stage of metamorphosis.

The problem with this lunar cycle is it is not just one thing. With the New Moon occurring on a cusp between two signs, it is hard to know what to make of it all. My best advice: Go with the flow. There will be high energy days ahead mixed suddenly with exhaustion and befuddlement. Change is happening. Decisions are being made. Honor the less dramatic parts of yourself too, the parts that needs restoration, the parts that may inexplicably not be ready for a daring shift into action.

Forecast for March 2, 2015—March 8

Moon in Leo
Monday, March 2.
Buckle up. Even if you aren’t ready, this Monday is taking off without you. The Moon in Leo contacts all the fire planets (and there are a lot of them) by harmonious trines and one conjunction. Early in the morning (predawn CST) the Moon trines Saturn in Sagittarius and then, while we get going in the morning, makes another trine to Mars in Aries. With Saturn’s discipline and Mars’ eagerness, we could get a lot accomplished early in the day. Later, the Moon trines Venus in Aries, creating an enjoyable spark in our interactions with others. Success in these interactions comes from appreciation of everyone’s individuality. We aren’t done however, Moon trines Uranus in Aries and comes into conjunction with Jupiter, triggering a big boost in our desires to bring about change. This desire carries over into tomorrow big time. 

Moon in Leo
Tuesday, March 3.
Be the change you want to see in the world, this quote popularly attributed to Mahatma Gandhi is the perfect way to embrace this day. Who we are matters. With Jupiter in Leo (since July 2014), we’ve been exposed to the importance of identity and impact. This Jupiter is very active this week and we will get to experience another level to the significance of identity. Today Jupiter makes a trine to Uranus in Aries. (Jupiter will do this again in June.) Jupiter is giving our revolutions a boost. Be creative, be yourself. 

Moon enters Virgo 5:57 am CST
Wednesday, March 4.
Although the Moon entering an earth sign today should make things calmer, it really doesn’t this time. Virgo energy is about integration and discernment. The fire transits today aren’t helping with this desire. You may notice the conflict in yourself too—wanting solid conclusions but too antsy to achieve them. Venus in Aries makes a trine to Jupiter in Leo and conjoins Uranus. The last three days have been a series of contacts with Jupiter and Uranus. We are itching to revolutionize something. Today’s Venus contacts increase the likelihood that women will be at the vanguard of these changes. Venus also makes a square to Pluto—we are seeing extreme commitment to change. Some of this is fueling violence, some of it is fueling creative ingenuity. In the midst of these transits, a whisper of tomorrow’s Full Moon threads through the day. The Moon squares Saturn and opposes Neptune reminding us of the transformations that Saturn square to Neptune will bring over the next year. Delusional fanaticism is the shadow side, self-sacrificing commitment to the wellbeing of all is the other. We have the choice of which side we will support. 

Moon in Virgo
March 5—Full Moon: Illuminating. Did you forget the Sun was in Pisces the last few days? If you are a fire sign, then probably you did. But if you happen to be a water sign, and especially a Pisces, then chances are the world has been going way to fast for you. This Full Moon is an opportunity to regroup and anchor into the Pisces season again. Pisces gives us all kinds of goodies, like: a chance to restore our souls, deeper understanding of our interconnections, artistic inspirations, and transcendent communing with Mystery. If we forgo the chance to slow down and tune into our deeper selves during this season, we could be missing an important component of emerging into Spring. How good are you at self care? This is a perfect moment to turn your thoughts to what you need to give yourself. I’ve recently been counseled to think of my daily practices as good maintenance of my wellbeing. Do a little bit everyday and we are less likely to need crisis intervention at some point when we’ve ignored ourselves for far too long. The Moon in Virgo opposing the Pisces Sun is a good ally for keeping to our everyday maintenance practices. At every Full Moon, the Moon offers the necessary counterpoint to the Sun’s instincts. The opposite signs where the Moon and Sun reside need each other. Pisces needs Virgo. The big fire energy of this Spring is not over, we benefit from listening to Virgo’s good sense to make sure we tend to our health and wellbeing during big change.

The chart for the Full Moon is dominated by two strong signatures: a yod aspect configuration pointing to Jupiter in Leo, and the cluster of planets in Aries that are square to Pluto in Capricorn. Jupiter has been in this pattern for a few weeks. Perhaps you’ve noticed the tension between ego and selfless idealism. Or perhaps you are taking things more personally than usual. Or perhaps you simply feel unappreciated. Jupiter in Leo is the guru of healthy self respect. When we feel recognized and appreciated by others, then the best qualities of Leo can shine through: nobility and generosity. Find that equation for yourself.

South Node, Mars, Uranus and Venus in Aries are lined up and ready to stir up some stuff. Aries is the sign of the great leap. We don’t jump because we are courageous, although it can look that way to others. We jump because we HAVE to do something! The closeness of Mars to the South Node hints that some of our impulsivity is influenced by the past. Forget the idea of rugged individualism. Look around, others are just as eager to change the world as you are. We are acutely aware of many things that need immediate action, even if it means leaping into the unknown. There is something wonderful about this energy. Honor your leaps.

Moon enters Libra 6:52 pm CST

Friday, March 6. I suggest you try to coast through this day. Big energy this week takes a small break. Enjoy a day where there are no exact aspects made at all. To top it off, the Moon is void-of-course until this evening when it glides into Libra. Given Libra’s aesthetic awareness, tonight would be a good time to take in the arts or a pleasant evening spent with compatible people.

Moon in Libra
Saturday, March 7. The day starts off well with a grounding aspect between the Moon and Saturn. By the evening we may be less polite and restrained. Tonight (CST) the opposition of the Moon with Mars could spark conflict or at least strong viewpoints. With the Sun conjoining Chiron in Pisces, feelings could be hurt easily. Use Libra Moon’s diplomacy to ease tensions. This will help with tomorrow’s tense aspects too.

Moon in Libra
Sunday, March 8. Today is International Women’s Day. A quick Internet search informed me that the first International Women’s Day was observed in 1911 and was organized by suffragettes fighting for women’s right to vote. Let’s honor the women who have fought to change this world. The Moon in Libra, a sign that craves fairness and justice, touches the paradigm-changing square between Uranus and Pluto. This same Moon also opposes Venus in Aries. Venus prefers Libra but while in Aries, we notice that women often come forward to fight. The theme for this year’s International Women’s Day is “Make it Happen.” I salute the women of the world who are doing just that.

*Read about the beginning of the Aquarius/Pisces cusp lunar cycle on my blog

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