Full Moon Capricorn, Thursday, July 21, 2005 4:00 AM PST

I broke a nail this morning. I know this may not seem like much of a disaster in the grand scheme of things, but this wasn’t an ordinary nail. This was a very expensive, acrylic coated and enhanced measure of my self.

I feel like Samson after his hair was cut off. This is not a good sign.

– serendipitously lifted from a blog post titled: The Straw that Broke the Camel’s Back

Full Moon Capricorn, Thursday, July 21, 2005 4:00 AM PST

A second full moon in Capricorn marks the feeling tone of this very ambitious summer. Of all signs, Capricorn most represents worldly affairs- the net result means more than the journey; what we have or have not accomplished is open to the viewing public. We examine and are examined with the cold eyes of realism & materialism. Are we measuring up? Ugh. Capricorn is your 100 year old typing teacher peering over your lesson, her look is inscrutable and you have no idea what you did wrong but certain discipline is forthcoming. Even though your work is good, your calculating eye is nonplussed, dissatisfied. Peering over your hard-worked efforts you can’t shake the classic Saturn set-up: it’s not good enough.

This full moon is challenging. We feel our age, our wear and tear. Maybe we’re world- weary and down trodden, life is simply hard. This is the planetary shrift. Weather changes in the drop of a dime, so certain influences of the planets bring in new energy. The moon translates like a microphone to the song of the planets: sometimes energy feels surprising because it’s simply a strong contrast to what’s come before. Other times it’s the bass in the background, cohesion that held the song while you were paying attention to the guitar solo. This moon turns up the bass that needs new strings or its fret noise eliminated; what’s been going on all along has either been taken care of or now becomes a screaming banshee. Whether you’ve been making a living or making a life, any life choice turning points you’ve faced through the past couple of years now show themselves. You may feel dissatisfied with the reward/benefit ratio inherent in either path chosen. You’ve got a case of ‘the shakes’- you’re shaking with shoulda, coulda, woulda more urgently than the imfamous Elvis pelvis.

Hold up. There are practical obstacles to your path, to be certain. These are hard and they show themselves periodically so you can cut your teeth, feel the burn, get all bent out of shape and come up with an ingenious soul-ution that alters your course. Obstacles are the tools of evolutionary genius- they get you to a higher place. You become a better version of yourself in the process: costing a few more illusions, rewarding you a new intimacy with your soul-truth. If you’re never backed into a corner, you never learn what a wonderful escape artist, spy, hero-in-training you are. You’ve known people like this: people who never get angry or dissatisfied, those who never intimately & personally feel the burn, never sit very long with the consequences of their life choices. Think about this person. Hmmm. Kind of tastes like pudding or white bread. Kind of looks like a banana slug. Probably lives in DC. Do you really want to be this person? Feel better? Now send some fire their way.

The secret is: there is no quick fix for your laborious fears, but there is a balm for your understanding. There is a 2 ½ year long-term coping strategy available, should you choose to accept the mission. This schoolmistress has prepared the following lesson plan for you, in light of a personal fire revelation. Light a fire, an actual fire. What is your first response to the image/element fire? Do you back away for fear that it will burn you? Are you intrigued by its beauty & dance? Is it too hot or are you pushing toward its heat? Whatever your reaction, look at it as a metaphor for what blocks you from or moves you toward accepting your passion. Who do you need to be to accept what fire wants to give you? Start by feeding your passion with the fire-fuel equivalent of propane. Warning: You will smell burning hair. You will witness big and multiple explosions, bursts of heat competing for your attention. And should you fully embrace the force that is fire, you also embrace the danger inherent in your own power and the possibility of extinguishing others or being completely extinguished yourself. It’s not a journey for the meek. This is the bass player who finally gets a chance to shine. Mr. Bass probably doesn’t want to play guitar solo in this lifetime, that’s why he’s on bass. Yet soon the bass players of the world will be called forth to shine. Others more familiar with the limelight will be learning how to step aside graciously, lending their light to others for awhile. The planetary tides will soon shift as Courage replaces Fear & Awful, and instead enters Fearsomeness and Awe. Remind yourself of this fun assignment, of learning to hold & play with fire, as the workhorse of Capricorn Full Moon threatens to steal yours.

7/21 the day is testy. Focus your energy and try not to react. A lunar rhythm lesson from the last degree of the Cancer sun: From the full to the new moon our physical energy is best used, spent. Always use the new moon to full moon to recuperate, rejuvenate and garner your strength, playing it in low key. Now, during the full to new moon your body loves to expend energy, detoxify, sweat, breathe, and act. Set work appointments for the 2 weeks following the full moon, clean now and your housework shows better results, plan to do big projects during this time period (although this particular moon Capricorn cycle do projects already started, as Mercury retrograde frustrates new ones). Tomorrow Mercury goes retrograde (thru 8/15) in the sign of Leo, the lion. Finish up travel plans and loose ends now. Re-member, anything with a re- before it is a great idea. With Merc Rx, people often appear from the past, paperwork and hanging details want re-dress. The lion may show its unruly mane with silver-tongued comments or grandstanding speeches arising from overdue complaints. Watch out for fighting fire with fire. Authority figures, bosses, the man of the family may voice his complaints or cause you some.

7/22-7/24 buckle your seatbelt, bumpy ride ahead with much overhead shift. Sun moves into Leo and fully joins Saturn. Leo is the epitome of fun, but we may have the attitude of work now, play later. We’re tired and a little rattled, although sociable with Moon in Aquarius. What we’re in the middle of seems epic, either a demon monster in need of slaying or a retirement party for Keith Richards (yeah, right). Sun opposing Chiron makes this a good day for re-visiting the wounds- we see exactly where we’re wounded, and perhaps with the help of Saturn, the appropriate re-dressing needs are revealed even if we’re unable to feel soothed just yet. Venus, the planet of pleasure, leaves extravagant, fun loving Leo and enters Virgo (thru 8/16). Hope you had fun with your buddies, did some fancy shopping and enjoyed the lavish entertainment options of Leo! Virgo isn’t all that bad for Venus—she just has to work a little harder to enjoy herself. If this sounds like an oxymoron, understand that Venus is the pleasure principle, artistry, the relationship negotiator and Virgo makes a fantastic librarian. Venus in Virgo takes her pleasure from analysis, methodically re-sizing and measuring what isn’t working to make it more efficient. This is Ms. Fix-It, the classic ‘fixer-upper’ partner. We can act like a know-it-all or we can work on improving what’s inhibiting our pleasures, what’s keeping us from an integrated experience of relationship. Roll up your sleeves and turn the mirror within.

Speaking of Venus, this meticulous fixer upper of a gal is a dramatic adjustment from the past month. Perhaps extending past these few days we’ll feel the bumps in relationship and sense where the cargo has shifted. Saturday, 7/23 is shifty, with a heaviness that warrants any excuse to escape- to the movies, to art, to just being in the moment. The evening is good for breaking a stalemate: be sure to open the overhead bin with care so none of it falls on anyone’s head all at once. 7/24 brings opportunity for subtle adjustments in perception, the temptation to overlook relationship challenges are faced with your bottom line of what will and won’t work. An aspect between the node and Neptune opens us to transcendental connection with others, providing hopeful kinship when we need it.

7/25-26 Moon in Aries, always a good day for doing anything physical, rolling up the sleeves. This early morning she lends her light to accomplishment- getting down to business and finishing what she starts thanks to Saturn. If you’re a diligent moon-watcher, you’ll use her harmonious interplay over the next couple of years. Plan ambitious business meetings, get your hair cut, or perform car maintenance during this moon sign. Always with moon in Aries, guard your health with preventative measures and watch out for headaches. 7/26 gives a little respite for the harried. Late morning imaginations yield ideas with heft later in the day.

7/27-28 Last Quarter moon Mars moves into Taurus. Feel a whoosh of stabilizing energy, quite different from what has been. The high-energy swing of the last month and a half is less about movement & action, shooting off in all directions to find a new one, and more about becoming focused & conservative with our energies. A particularly long stay in the constellation of Taurus, Mars will be here through the end of the year. Globally, expect to see more scrapping over natural resources, concerns about how to protect and keep precious commodities. This is a stubborn fighter, who fights for what he has and is generally unyielding. He’s fighting for what’s his rather than a cause or pursuit of justice. An early afternoon glitch with workload and/or ego juice, surrenders late evening, sweet and appreciative. 7/28 what makes us different can incite negative attention from others. Old wounds can attract aggression or violence so instead focus on this question: what can our otherness, our different-ness give to the world? What initially divides brings a healing message. Don’t believe everything you think (or say) tonight.

7/29-31 Overall, the weekend carries the motto ‘independence, no matter the price’. One influence registers pure frustration and tension. This is the time you don’t want to push your luck, but step back and take a breather. Note that your inner response will blow off this advice and follow its ego-urge ‘I want it done now, damn the astrological advice’. Potentially we feel powerfully stuck or struck depending on our take on things- stuck if we’re pushing against a brick wall, struck if in the line of fire. Innocuous-enough mantra: put on the breaks before the breaks are put on you. At the same time we’re looking at relationship with a critical eye, and those eyes want a new pair of glasses, preferably different from what we’ve worn before, with plenty of room to move. Venus is unhappy with the present state of affairs, but has a vision for change. Tap into your imagination for fresh ideas. Mercury Rx may focus on past complaints, but really just wants to help address the situation cleanly. Follow the moon for grounding guidance, 7/29 evening is useful for solitude, study or finishing up an important phone conversation. 7/30 starts out nicely, we feel conversational, harmonious and integrated, but by early afternoon things get dicey with unexpected detours, we’re wondering whether we should forfeit our hand now or keep in the game. The evening lightens up, bringing respite and some mental fortification to the evening and like a mega dose of vitamins, much needed. 7/31 is the day of truth. You’ve been around the block before you even get out of bed.

8/01-8/03 care for your inner world, giving yourself time to digest and adapt to the changing landscape. Get to know your natural rhythm again-use your honing instinct to guide the errant birds back to their respective nests. 8/02 is good for business as usual, accomplishing mundane tasks that don’t require too much planning or coordination. 8/03 Mars tussels with the eclipse point of April 24. A day of emotional extremes, eclipses are mini-earthquakes so if you observed action 2 weeks before or after the 24th, come again. As the lunar landscape prepares for a new cycle, plan for a new moon fast on one of the next couple of days- the body detoxifies particularly well at the new moon, with an ability to strengthen disease resistance now more than any other time during the moon cycle.

* Are you a lover of lunation? Do you find your hair looks better on Moon in Leo days, your digestion easily upset on Moon in Virgo? Does the Full Moon bring crisis or contemplation? Did your grandmother used to plant tomatoes when the moon was in Scorpio? Do you have a story? I would love to hear it.

**PRONOIA ANTIDOTE BONUS for Saturn’s cranky entry into Leo: Courage replaces Fear & Awful, and instead enters Fearsomeness and Awe. Now more than ever, we need imagination to dream ourselves out of too much reality. Escaping to the movies no longer dreams us into a better place but creates new nightmares (Hell’s Rejects) reinforcing the demons that keep us in Samsara. Do you recognize how much of this you take in, or do you still blithely label it ‘entertainment’ and ‘escape’? Your fears are a seductively evil Lover. It’s time to re-define what magnetizes you:

Fearsomeness is a beauty so fierce that when it shows up, it completely disarms all fear, blasting through limitations you thought would take a lifetime to heal. Awe is a decision to view obstacles with sense of wonder- wonder plays with curiosity and kicks accusatoriness and predictability in the ass.

Commit to only ingesting, imbibing, surrounding yourself, CREATING WITH Fearsomeness & Awe.

New Moon Cancer, Wednesday, July 6, 2005 5:02 AM PST

-the sun’s in the east and the moon reflects
Like the knowledge and wisdom I manifest
If you wanna go to heaven lay upon my breast- I’m game. -Erykah Badu

New Moon Cancer, Wednesday, July 6, 2005 5:02 AM PST

The new moon in the most fertile sign of the zodiac, Cancer, begins as a dark seedling of summer. New Moon in Cancer plants roots for the winter months, when there is less light and support. Even though the sun is bright now, turn to that part of your life that gives you nourishment. This is the place you go to for manna-the food of your life. Locate your inner taproot by asking yourself: where do I go for nurturing, caring and compassionate unconditional love in my world? Perhaps you give this to others, or they give this to you. Traditionally, Cancer is associated with family; your inner spirit lives in the home and hearth. From an evolutionary standpoint, Cancer is who and what you consider your ‘home’ in the world. It is safe. It is what feeds and sustains you, always providing the proper nourishment for the next step of your growth. Lately it is easy to locate what de-stabilizes us, this is the impetus to re-conceive our nurturing needs.

The moon represents the emotional and physical body and when it needs attention, communicates through ‘symptoms’. The symptom of Cancer is a certain mild malaise, a pre-conceptual nausea that encompasses all new beginnings. It’s the butterfly in the stomach, the queasiness. The uninitiated call it symptomatic, Cancer looks closely and notices that it’s simply something stirring. It is the secret seed to your future, the one gestating inside you so small that no one knows its there, perhaps not even you. It’s a keeper of the ultimate mystery, the Egyptian scarab that crawled across the path of the Sun, laying eggs in its wake. It’s the creation of life. And it causes a body/mind phenomenon remarkably similar to morning sickness. The clockwork of the psyche is right on schedule: you’re trying to do the same old and are road blocked. When you try and address the needs of the new person you’re becoming, you get slightly nauseous and uncertain.

This is Mother Nature’s blue double bar on the pregnancy test stick, a certain sign that new life is growing within. Soon you will reject all the foods that used to comfort. Perhaps you begin to crave tough leathery things that to your former self tasted like old socks or you make a midnight run to the medicine chest for a spoonful of that delicious new Kiss My Face toothpaste that tastes so good that it must be food. You are an alien creature not because you have become alien, but because you are housing a whole new life form.

From the standpoint of your habitual life patterns, (aka the status quo), this is not safe. Any new beginning throws off the physical and psychic body, the homeostasis it works so hard to maintain. This sets off a domino effect of spontaneous re-shuffling to a set of new needs and conditions. By the way, did I mention this bundle of joy, this new conception you’re birthing is a closet revolutionary? This new moon invitation is a 100% original never been done before way of being. Prepare to make some quick-on-your-feet maneuvers. Your ability to creatively adjust-will be what nurtures and nourishes this new cycle. Psst-have you heard? Adaptation is the new beige, the fashionable rage of the season.

New Moon brings a searching ambiguity that maddeningly teases even as it delivers. Questions precede answers and New Moon is a Magic 8 Ball, full of one-liners, koans to all of your seriously gut wrenching questions. Remember the Magic 8? The 8 Ball was never much of a prophet, but a crystal ball to your hopes and fears. It maddeningly spat out irreverent answers like ‘try again’ and ‘My sources say No’ which prompted more questions like: ‘just what sources are those?’ and made you want to get your dad’s hammer and crack open that ball just to watch its bloody blue liquid spill onto the sidewalk. Not that I did that.*

Cancer must move from childlike fear clinging of the past to the practical sustainability & security demands that change and progress require. Now as you gaze into Magic 8 with attendant childhood fears and parent trap tapes fading like watermarks on the sidewalk, you realize that by virtuously blazing new trails you have somehow fancy foot-worked the resistance out of your reality. Nurture this truth with what it needs to grow, even as initially physically uncomfortable to bear. It’s only uncomfortable because you’re figuring out how to adapt to a new truth. Your precious truth is sacred and hard- earned, directly from the Maker. Like the Magic 8, the answer always brings more questions & when you resign yourself to the question, you begin to arrive. In time your conception will bear a most luscious and delectable fruit. Give it about 9 months.

7/06 New Moon Day. We are hopeful, with glimmers of promise and new life in our eyes on New Moon Day, when Venus in Leo and Mercury in Leo sextile Jupiter in Libra, wonderfully generous and fun loving. Any new relationship or contract forged under this influence has qualities of generosity, equality and expansiveness. Ingenuity is a prerequisite as theirs is an arranged marriage by the matchmaker of change, Uranus. If you’re looking for exciting and different, you’ve met your man. Uranus, the rule breaker, can’t be boxed in, the iconoclast of tradition. It’s a negotiation worth making if you’re open-minded- what’s offered is as good as it looks- a really special and rare opportunity. This will be challenging to all your old paradigms and require ongoing adjustments, yet endlessly compelling. Harmony in relationships and negotiations continues through July 12. The New Moon squares challenging Mars, as we push into new endeavors we’re pushed and pulled energetically. It’s been a particularly demanding time and this is the push. Yet energy is eased and softened by a sextile to Neptune, who prefers to pull us into fantasy by appealing to your softer side, your shared vision and compassion, perhaps a more skilled tactic to the energetic brute force of Mars.

7/06-7/09 With Neptune we want to act on our dreams and Mars traveling close to the north node causing an amplification of desire. Perhaps your energetic, physical and sexual demands are high right now. With the node, Mars says ‘I want what I want and now’. Do you feel your own heat? There’s a driven-ness in behavior, a sexual charge in the air. Awareness makes the difference between acting blindly on impulse, and acting with full conscious intent. It’s a great time to become aware of your motivations, sexuality, aggressive urges and what makes you tick. Mars also rules, cars, weapons, force by violence so be safe these days. This amplified energy may combust in a mini firework of action as it squares the eclipse degree of April 8 on Saturday, 6/09. What were you experiencing around that time? The square may bring in new information or a change in direction. Socially, it was a powerfully procreative eclipse highlighting regime changes, women’s issues and secular versus sacred. On a softer note, Moon, Mercury and Venus in Leo add drama and fun to the heat of your Mars. Forget shy, let your lion roar. Friday 6/08 is great party day, planning or having one, if you’re not taking that class on Tantra. Simultaneously, active quincunxes may leave the door open for leaky plans, interesting diversions and some space-out time. Saturday continues the fun energy, people are sweet and engaging. Entertain, express and treat yourself to some pampering luxuries of Leo- the best of everything is not extraneous but essential to Leo.

7/10-7/11 Bask in the warm glow of the weekend while unwinding the process. Virgo moon is good for mental housework, clearing out the clinkers in your mind. Proceed to the next step by listening to self-talk, perhaps overly critical, yes, but all in the pursuit of clearing away the extraneous information, clarifying. Try not to call in the thought police, the weekend’s free-spiritedness was good. Meanwhile, clarity in one part of the life, confusion in the other as Venus opposes Neptune Monday, 7/11 illuminating idealism and illusion in relationship. The fog will lift, as we see that our foolishness is genuinely good and sad, arising from a heart that just wants to love and be loved. Meanwhile, physical energy runs high, and if channeled into vigorous pursuits of self-purification or housework, you’ll avoid the burnout of trying to take on more than capable. The push is strong as Aries Mars square Sun in Cancer activates desire to complete a task, damn the torpedoes. Argumentative? Remember ‘the best defense is a good offense’. Accomplish a lot and remember your limits.

7/12 -7/14 late afternoon proves its point and mellows. Power down with Moon in Libra, Libra re-calibrates us from the early week’s energetic contrasts. Evening of 7/12 there’s a challenge for clear communication, and a potential to see where the loop can be closed. If a situation is fuzzy, what is left unsaid may fog the dialogue and hang in the air like an echo. 7/13 Mid morning bears gifts, excellent time to make business connections and beneficial meetings. Late evening is soft and diffuse, a gently embracing mist. 7/14 The morning starts out busy and cranky. Deep reflection and healing words settles the day into equanimity. Go to bed early, if you’re up late you’ll be thinking about obligations. First quarter moon is associated with hunter goddess Artemis, who appeared to as a protectress of the virgin maiden, making sacred the inviolability of the fecund deep forest, wild natured femininity. Befriend and make sacred the possibilities you envision with friends and partnerships.

7/15, 7/16 Emotional & sexual intensity. It’s a juicy Scorpio moon bringing up your deepest desires thanks to Mars and Venus trine Pluto. Sexual and emotional energy expended with focused determination brings intimacy to relationships, and as you’re able to contact a deeper emotional & sexual expression, don’t undervalue the richly insightful body-wisdom you’re tuning into. Cut the relationships that don’t bring you deep satisfaction. At the same time, ambitions run high as you access motivational power, taking you through the weekend.

Although we won’t feel it quite yet, the planetary backdrop news is:

Saturn’s shift into Leo 7/16.

Saturn is finally done with his tour de Cancer, and we’re left with the long term manifestations of Saturn in a sign he’s not so keen on: national security & entropic safety and defense concerns, over-identifications with tribe to which we belong, scarcity fears and emotional limitations. Yet a specific subset of the U.S., folks claim to feel ‘safer’ and certainly seem patriotic about their national tribe. Saturn always accomplishes his goal of gaining mastery and authority, even in a constellation where he has little skill. Saturn in the sign of the Lion, whom do we see: the little dictator or mastery of ego -or- the professional artist, the shining star who spreads light with authority? Collectively, there may be abuses and mismanagement of power brought to light, perhaps the punitive face of Saturn stops the broken record abuses. The good news is that over the next couple of years, the taskmaster wants you to take responsibility for the very special Leo talents that make you unique. Are you using the gifts that express your uniqueness and specialty in the world? How can you shine and clarify that light in your professional life? Are you letting your inner child out to play? Saturn in the sign of the eternal child, Leo, encourages new roles of responsibility and obligation to children & creativity. The Saturn method: to polish through limitation, responsibility, work and delays. In the area of life Saturn in Leo effects, we work a little harder to burn a little brighter. But the result is mastery of the highest caliber. Saturn ritual: stand up to the demon that says ‘but-I’ve never been creative-‘ by today manifesting an original creative act. This will set the tone for how you’d like to use Saturn for the next 2 years.

7/17-7/18 Moon in Sagittarius, kisses a brand new Saturn early Sunday morning. You subtly sense the shift but not quite sure how this will play out. Perhaps with playtime this afternoon, Venus and Mars give us some ideas. Like being on mega-date, the weekend just wants to keep on relating. But there’s more freedom in the air today; your compulsive steaminess has cooled off and now you just hang out and have fun with the Sag moon, liberal with affections, at ease with spontaneous acts of adventure that lead to self-discovery. 7/18 continues harmonious contacts; the moon plays the planets like an elegant then bold piece of music, ending in a sweet kiss late evening. Broadcast your song as you wear your heart on your sleeve.

7/19-7/20 dramatically shifts into productivity mode. Work takes priority over play as its more useful now to take the long view, a good balance to the enthusiasms of the weekend. During this gibbous stage of the moon, harness your focus as moon enters the dressing room under full light of the sun. What’s being revealed? Notice what takes center stage for fine-tuning. Eliminate unproductive efforts and time eating detractors, as the next 2 weeks helps you finish what you’ve started.

MERCURY RETROGRADE Warning: Back up the computers, book the ticket now. Mercury goes retrograde on 7/22 -8/14 in the sign of the lion, Leo. Where Leo falls in your chart, you will soon revise and re-evaluate. Get car, contract, communication, transportation issues cleared up by 7/17 or prepare to do it over. ‘Let’s do the time warp again-‘

*I guess I wasn’t the only one blessed with the urge to penetrate the core of the Mystery at a young age. http://www.fiendation.com/people/chris/eight.htm

Solstice Capricorn Full Moon, June 21, 2005 9:14 PM PST

“Turn your face to the sun and the shadows fall behind you.” — Maori proverb

‘The human heart is primarily a shell.’ –text from anatomy book

Solstice Capricorn Full Moon, June 21, 2005 9:14 PM PST

At the tipping point, summer solstice, the earth’s axis reaches to its northernmost heights. So it goes with our psyche, the invisible world that surrounds this grand sphere like a delicate balloon. Have you reached tipping point? Lately the emotional content of our lives resemble this thin skinned balloon. We feel the skin of the places we protect and the places we’re pushed. The delicate shell of your inner space is worth protecting; why otherwise would we feel so fragile, so vulnerable?

The place we live in our deepest self is the realm of Cancer. And it is the place the world doesn’t see. This is the ‘in here’ to the ‘out there’. With Cancer there is a continual tipping point, to be pushed further out there requires equal time, in here. There is no movement in the world of men, dreams, career and big cars without a movement within to counterbalance. But what does that movement within look like? How do we understand and make space for this in a culture that values a sort of quantifiable proof for each hour of our day? So much of the time Cancer is busy fighting the demons of ‘shoulds’ compliments of Cancer’s counterpart Saturn. I have a theory about the condition of lunacy also known as hyper-emotionalism. This lunar body-mind symptomology was an STD created by the mating of Saturn and the Moon. This is what happens when a big collective ‘should’ takes over Cancer’s pre-requisite need for wandering in the moonlight of shadows, the half-aware space populated by various psychic figures. These are the characters that make up who we are, and who, for one reason or another, were interrupted mid-conversation. Half shadowed & glimmering, these familiar strangers eagerly await our greeting with a beckoning wave ‘Hello, it’s been so long…’ Heeding our inner characters, our sensitivities and deep felt impressions give embodiment to present actions in the truest sense of the word–they imbue our body-lives with depth and meaning. Deep self-listening often gives us answers to long standing dilemmas. To not do so, risks lunacy.

The level and pace we’re functioning at right now is faster than any time in history. The big Capricorn ‘Should’ looks a lot like father time, on speed. Cancer doesn’t walk, but meanders, a zigzag gait full of stops and starts on a timeless beach. Held captive of Big Should feels a lot like being held hostage and all you can think of is how to hold your pee, biologically held captive like a child, until the guard comes around again. But this is the Grand Distraction, the elaborate skill of the subtle thief, because while you make busy with all your holding water and paranoia about deadlines, the swimming pool of your soul is being drained. Instead of honoring the body’s physiological need to relieve itself, emotionally, mentally, physically, Big Should comes in the appearance of ‘getting things done’ and Mars in Aries is the enforcer up for doing just about anything involving movement, doesn’t matter what. Accomplishment with a capital ‘A’ accompanies Big Should everywhere he goes. This call for action is strong right now, yet Cancer calls on your attunement to the subtle shifts of the life cycle, whether this happens literally by adjusting your day to day routine to the changes of season, or adapting to the needs of a new life cycle.

Although it may be Cancer’s secret wish, there is no escaping the driven, fast paced energy happening right now. Follow that energy to your accomplishments, but don’t leave your inner needs behind. In the spirit of warrior Mars, I am challenging you to a radical duel. Channel your martial energy; your militant and driving desire for accomplishment into something akin to a psychic take back the night rally. Invite all your errant inner figures to attend. Introduce them to one another: Mr. Big pants at the office meet My life as a former infatuation junkie. And do this in a way that an endurance trainer might suggest: pulse your workout. Perform a strenuous physical accomplishment, then for good measure, go just as energetically within. Ruthlessly commit to pulsing your energy. There is one protective caveat: this night observation experiment requires removal from addictive habits and tendencies. According to some theorists, Adolf Hitler’s personal physician regularly administered that 1930’s invention of the pharmacological substance, speed, with his morning coffee. Result: mass genocide. Doesn’t it all make sense? Manipulating the natural cycle of the body is one of the quickest ways to cut out on body/mind/spirit wisdom. A the world around you is spinning at a fantastically demanding pace, one of the most demanding of the year, this invitation becomes all the more pressing.

Throughout all the movement remember, Sun in Cancer is your life preserver, your secret raft. When the moon rises and embraces the night with her silvery glow, where do you go for secret refuge? Who do you find there? What does your secret soul-stirring escape look like? At this summer solstice tipping point, with the ability to look both backwards and ahead at once, sit in the middle of stop and go. The sun’s daylight is at maximum length, and so the moon is strengthened by reflecting her brightest. She says: ‘I will be your gentle nudge at the edge of land and water, as you climb upon your raft and just drift.’ As the Cancer constellation located at a dimly lit corner of our universe, here is where our eyesight dims and we must feel our way along, shadow dancing in the twilight. It’s a necessary and healthy process. This is the dance of the sun and moon from the moon’s point of view, an outer/inner point of integration. Accept the invitation and your body/mind/soul open to the promise of this summer solstice moon- a previously unknown holism & integration.

As the full moon avails herself over the next 2 weeks, the majority of planets have sleeves rolled up and hands busily securing whatever scene is occupying our stage. With Saturn meeting Venus, Mercury, this is a time of focused commitment and intention, perfect for marriage ceremonies, contracts, and securing any intention with staying power. As Saturn is in his final weeks of his 2 year tour de force in Cancer, the impetus is to finish up. Whether this means closing a deal on a house, or closing a chapter of your life, commit or acquit. Fini! Be done with it! Your duties and obligations will soon change as surely as Saturn changes signs, so take some time to sit back and reflect on the growth that has taken place over the past 2 1/2 years. You deserve an award, and if you look closely, these Herculean efforts have certainly left you with at least one. Meanwhile, the desire to do your own thing builds through mid-July, moving forward impatiently tugs as some dilemma about how to do this steadily grows. Heed your inner warning system: when heavy emotions surface, take that as a cue to step back and re-evaluate your game. But the rule of the game is forward motion, so don’t hesitate to take that risk.

6/21 does possibility hang with the moon like a grand crystal ball in the night sky? Visions are illuminated as all you have to do over the next 3 months becomes apparent. In some traditions, the first full moon in June was called the ‘Honey’ moon, a good time to harvest honey from the combs. For the pagans, this summer solstice time (and 6/24) is known as Litha’s day, the day when the Goddess became pregnant with things to come.

6/22 Moon in Capricorn is all business, starting out a bit cranky and then by mid-morning a bit overwhelmed as we may get bogged down by too much of something. The early afternoon lets productivity have its way, as long as we’re encouraged by a change of scenery. 6/23 an old thought or persistent nagging may come back to haunt. Our sensitive perceptions may easily be clouded by reactive patterns. Late morning, do something sweet for yourself. Venus holds the key to our sensitivities, our sense of self-love may feel a little bruised today. She really hasn’t been getting enough attention this month. Remember, self-pleasure is a form of nurturing, so do something for you that ‘just feels right’. Late afternoon, the pressure of obligations and deadlines is wearing and the body is tired. Have dinner with friends perhaps a little later than usual, as the energy opens up around mid-evening, lifting tiredness into amiable sociability.

6/24 celebrates the birth of St. John the Baptist, the light bringer, cousin and baptizer of Jesus. His announcement: ‘The light is coming!’ No wonder, St. John’s Wort is the herbal remedy for depression, the answer for the winter solstice blues 6 mos. from now. Focus face forward to a bright future. Energy is high mid-morning, a great time for following up with business contacts, making connections with friends for the weekend. Head to the theaters tonight, Moon hangs with Neptune as the fog banks dissolve any overly ambitious plans. Relax Friday night as Saturday we may find ourselves overbooked.

6/25-6/26 Opportunities and new awareness may appear as if out of the blue, yet some of these have been culminating for a long time. The weekend is commitment time. Thoughts about relationships, who & what we value and what to do loom large. Who do we give our heart to and why? This isn’t a small question, for this shell of a heart contains a lifetime of heart-earned knowledge, the wisdom of everything we believe in and value. At the same time the tremendous push for forward movement could shoot the wad prematurely. Are we misreading another’s motivations or overestimating our own? Hopefully the serious turn of mind has us wanting to make promises we can keep. The challenge may be making our plans agreeable to another, opening the door either to conflict or possibility, depending on our approach. Object lesson: use the well-considered energy to consider well and the opportunities will present naturally. Saturday evening pressure drop transitions into Sunday, thinking and drifting. Pulsing back and forth, pondering thoughtfully, then dipping into the consciousness of the moment mines sudden insight- a superior balm for heavy minds and hearts.

6/27-6/28 Last Quarter moon. 6/27 morning tiptoes in like a lamb, out like a Fresh new you! comes along mid-morning as you’re reborn an Amazon Goddess or Roman Warrior. This is the first day of the rest of your life kind of feel. Maybe not quite as dramatic, but we’re scheming a new scene, following new impulses to interesting corners, yes? It’s a virtual break from the past as all this mucking around in our emotions, woundology and memory leads to a virtual creative jailbreak. Out with the old, this is the new year your creativity has been waiting for. Mercury, then Venus both enter Leo this evening they’ve transformed their vintage retro look into a whole new style, decked to the nines. Mercury didn’t like Cancer and sped right out of there, but will remain in Leo for an extended stay- thru the beginning of September! Whoa, apparently a little drama is in order. Communications are embellished with flourishes, bells and whistles and not just a little bit of self-concern. With Mars in Aries support, we’re certainly learning to speak our minds and follow that entrepreneurial spirit wherever it may lead, so follow that hunch and claim your idea before you see it on an infomercial this time next year. Meanwhile, a good Mercury in Leo stage manager will advise: ‘Okay superstar, you’re voice is fabulous, but let’s not drown out the supporting cast!’ But that voice is just a minor distraction as Mercury assists Venus in Leo (till 7/22) with their swift little tango. This is a fun pair, a little sexy & flirty in conversations and relationships, daring with creativity. Appreciate this tour de force, ‘Won’t you let me treat you kind, we’ve got to burn to shine’. Make art, spread the word about your creative concepts-people really will be receptive. We find an ability to love and appreciate others by hamming it up ourselves. Leo says: build the fabulousness and they will come. Work it with last quarter moon, which always encourages mental jailbreak. A shift of consciousness absolutely changes everything.

6/29-30 adjusts our lenses to new insights and schemes. A mild day on 6/29 and we’re looking for solid footing on 6/30. Where do you stand with your new visions & are they threatening or safe? Pulling back is less attractive than putting some breadth behind your insights. Moon in Taurus wants a different kind of indulgence–by favoring the sensual drama of the body you’re able to ground the vision. ‘No more drama?’ Puh-leeze!

7/01-7/04 July begins with more energy to harness. 7/01 Push through a pile of work with ease today, or nurture business contacts to your best advantage. Whatever you chose to do, use the energy wisely by not overestimating your abilities, you could end up physically taxed. 7/02 Independence day weekend certainly lives up to its name. May the usual suspects deliver you a delicious liberation. Originality and flamboyancy come naturally, so plan something interesting to showcase the dramatists. Moon in chatty Gemini is buzzing around social activities and comings, goings. Saturday late night into Sunday morning is especially stimulating, if you keep vampire hours. 7/04 is the quietest day of all, a picnic by a lake. Or maybe we find our fireworks next to a leaky cooler, all fizzled out.

7/05 energy pulls back in as moon has firmly entered Cancer. Some sweet message may be on your voice or email today, perhaps from your weekend cohorts or someone singing your praises. Likewise, if you’re thinking fondly about someone, let them know. It will certainly count for a lot today, when receptivity is high. ‘baby you send me- set adrift on memory bliss of you-‘

** I have to plug Rob Brezsny’s new book: Pronoia Is The Antidote to Paranoia. Mr. Brezsny is the creative astrologer genius equivalent of Van Gogh, sans chopped ear story. This is a life manual for not just overthrowing the dictator within (and so without) but more vital than this, creating an intelligent, sexy and juicy alternative to the Big Should. After all, no one wants a kingdom without a ruler. http://www.freewillastrology.com

New Moon Gemini, Monday, June 6 2005 2:55 PM PST

If you meet the Buddha on the road, kill him. -Zen koan

There is no such thing as a true story. -Pema Chodron

Mind cannot see itself, it cannot see its own projections. -the Buddha

New Moon Gemini, Monday, June 6 2005 2:55 PM PST

The winds of change whoosh through our ears, push at our backs. Every idea leads to another and every thought spurns a new one. As fire reaches for air and air adds fuel to the fire, this is the state of our minds. When the mind is working at optimum efficiency, our environment reflects this- active, changing and groundless. The mind is powerful, covering great distances in a single bound. Like a great superhero, wherever the mind turns its attention, solutions appear and dissolve, questions are asked, sometimes answered, sometimes disappearing. Agile & nimble, we find that we think ourselves into circles and the circles lead to even deeper thoughts. It’s an endless thought universe and we’re learning that every thought we give attention to garners & gathers energy, creating something of precious value, and that not every thought is as it first appears.

Yet, some are. How do we know the difference? How do we know when to trust our perceptions? Mercury is the ruler of Gemini, and Gemini is the law of two. With this new moon, we’re divided right down the middle. There are two choices, or maybe it only appears to be two, really each just half of a whole? Because nothing is what it appears to be, the question may appear to be more of a riddle or a Zen koan. ‘How frustrating!’, you exclaim, “where’s the easy astrology 101 lesson?” Well, dear reader, you find yourself at the mercy of a philosopher after a weekend with two venerated Buddhist teachers on the topic of deconstructing the mind. Buckle up, you’ve read this far so might as well continue.

In Buddhist tradition, the root cause of human suffering is conceptuality. There we sit in life always with our divided thoughts, hairsplitting between the old and new, good or evil, happy or sad, black or white. What will you name your concept? Depression versus Happiness? Romantic Love versus Divine Love? Evil versus Good? This job versus that job? My perfect world versus your perfect world? We do this to one another; we do this in the way we divide our self. Isn’t it endless, the way we try to make one side solid and discredit the other?

We need a hero, a special kind of superhero to help us through this dilemma of seeing the world in black or white. But this isn’t an easy task for our hero. We need to believe in what we see to live functional lives that make sense, but hold a space for believing none of it! Enter the trickster Bodhisattva (Sanskrit word for compassionate being) Mercury. Mercury is the planet of relative mind, he is the only one the ancients afford privilege of traveling between worlds human and divine. To pass through the gates of heaven or hell Mercury makes himself invisible, often by wearing disguises. ‘Don’t believe everything you see!’, he says raucously. We simply can’t see the deliverer of the Divine message with our human eyes. Remember that ex- lover who delivered a message you were unable to receive until hindsight? You continue to hold onto your belief: ‘I was jilted, I was wronged, he/she figured out all my buttons and pushed them!’ That is our relationship to Mercury. To quote Pema Chodron again: ‘It gets pretty unsettling to keep trying to put ground underneath our perceptions when the rug keeps getting pulled out from under us.’

But what do we make of the present, caught in either/or thinking? When thoughts are like mercurial trickster elves, dancing all around pretty little ideas about what I Want, about who I Am what I Believe what brings Me Happiness? They tempt and tease, using every possible guise to trick self into believing ‘This is who I Am, this is who I Am Not!’ Heed Mercury’s warning: do not believe everything you think. As the archetypal riddler, Mercury is never as he appears. Yet we must learn how to recognize him when he does.

Mercury shows up virtually unrecognizable, the moment when we are at our wits end. We are at a crossroads in a foreign country and we can’t understand the language, let alone read the street signs. Here is the one legged man, the unassuming helper, the black cat that darts across your path and ends up distracting the hungry wolves, the magician, astrologer, the new lover. Does he carry an answer? There’s something here we don’t trust-he tells us who he is, but we don’t quite believe him. Glib & silver tongued with the most fabulously indistinguishable accent. There’s more to the story than he’s letting on-or maybe it’s all that shiny used car salesman hair gel. Like a love junkie who changes his story for every new girl he meets, we know we’re in the presence of a smooth talker. But whoa, what do we discover in the bedroom? Even his sexuality isn’t clear; in myth Mercury is androgynous. Here we are completely confused by choosing any of the four directions, road blocked by what we do not understand and this strange apparition appears out of nowhere. And so we pin our last hope on this hero with the gift of timing, a sort of superhero of the moment. We trust in the spontaneous arising of this strange character at the exact time we need him. And to our surprise, he pulls it off.

Never before have we so badly needed this superhero. It’s a sign of the times, like automobiles being built with navigation systems, we’re in desperate need of guides, maps, and sudden unveilings. We have barometers that intricately measured the satisfaction of the old life. And that is how we got in this predicament. Our measurements for happiness are incredibly outdated. This brand new life requires new ways of thinking. Old ways of being no longer work, but the new paradigms don’t hold the weight of water-yet.

We need someone who can walk between the worlds of bungled jargon, lectures on morality, or our own hyper cerebral cortex meltdowns of magnanimous proportion. Someone to remind us of our birthright, the vast space between heaven and earth, an arid, dry volcano crater like atmosphere, pregnant with possibility, wonder and awe. Discovery is the promise, and if we can detach our self enough from our subjective bias, engage our curiosity more than our fears, we become true sculptors of fluidity and motion. When we learn this skill, we become yogini mediums of flow. Flowing smoothly between divine connection and divine conception, we are unattached and therefore unmatched. Consider this New Moon an invitation as similar to that beginning of a brand new relationship. It has the quality similar to getting together with a new lover, when directly preceding the get together your mind immediately, habitually puts all the ways it sees the world onto the other. You just jump to conclusions about how THEY SHOULD BE, a recipe for certain disaster. Isn’t it true that the only way the relationship will survive is if you let your mind just fall apart? Like Mercury the Bodhisattva, your ability and skill for holding paradox, the space between, is the only way you’ll survive.

Today New Moon day, 6/06. In case you haven’t noticed, today thoughts are penetrating and powerful. Words should be carefully chosen for they seem to carry a hidden impact or strength. The tendency to obsess or brood can be heightened if only because what you’re thinking about runs so deeply into your personal truth.

The first couple weeks of this moon cycle points to adjustments in thinking and perception. There’s a planetary logic like a cascading waterfall into the rapids. What has recently begun now emerges with sudden apparent awareness, soon taking a twist and course correcting. The net results of awareness are being tested on the stomping grounds of relationship. It’s not easy, but its not overly demanding either-as the past couple of weeks have been. (Astrologers vacation: sorry for missing last newsletter- the shocks and challenges in interpersonal relationships I was unable to point out!) Jupiter’s recent direct motion this past weekend points to a new ease. Don’t worry if you missed graduation, you can still celebrate with a glass of sparkling bubbly, Jupiter’s favorite. What’s been percolating in Finding My Way 101 class since February 1 is now ready for the next step. Now unleash your wisdom on the world! However loud and enthusiastic we feel, truly this New Moon energy is the art of walking softly and carrying a big stick.

6/07 will carry the energy of intense mental output from yesterday, spilling over to tomorrow. The early morning could bring mild frustration, ending in a stalemate. Learn the necessity of going undercover with your opinions, seek the source instead of pointing to the cause. When moon glides into Cancer early evening, ground yourself by staying home and doing things around the house. The mind is relieved when you’re released into dreamtime later this evening.

6/08-6/09 give our thoughts back to our body. Although the West seems to think that mind is located in the head, in Tibet the mind is located in the viscera, the region of the stomach and solar plexus. Does this make more sense? When we’re agitated or excited we can actually FEEL this to be true. Locate your mind in your stomach/\body with Sun, Mercury in Gemini, Moon in Cancer. Generally, this is great instruction for staying in the body during this Sun in Gemini time-the tendency is to live in the head. Refresh your relationship with the body by taking a walk in nature. Make room for pleasure around noon 6/08, or else notice work stop and daydreaming begin. A little excitement during the afternoon leads to reveling in more new thoughts. 6/09 late afternoon to evening propels us into ponderous seriousness. Work late tonight because tomorrow you certainly won’t want to.

6/09-10 a little double trouble. An ant in your tea or a fly in your ear, anticipates a sound off of unforeseeable annoyances. Irritability leads to communication challenges. Whether these are minor or not depends on your ability to fish it out, or at a raw level, swat at it (not recommended). Everything’s a little more or less bearable by the fact that everyone seems to be over the top right now, pleasure for the sake of pleasure. Double your fun. Is it an attack of excess or exaggeration? Easily lending to overindulgence, we eat too many cupcakes and everyone at the party goes home with tummy ache. On the other hand, says Mercury, sidestep the ‘accident prone’ and go prone. Assume the position of relaxation and make sure its easy because lately it seems, we’ve developed an allergy to work. Tonight: seek weekend remedy.

6/10- 6/12 Remedy: some really good music and art this weekend. Moon in Leo demands it. The planet of action & sexuality, Mars, enters Aries 6/11 thru 7/26. Women: we want the men in our life to resemble the archetypal storybook. Assume the appearance of Brad Pitt, now! For all of us, this is truly the warrior archetype, the drive toward accomplishment, competition and action. Here’s Mars’ ultimatum: ‘ Either step up to the plate or get out of the game!’ Over the next few days repeat this martial statement and see if it more easily accesses your inner hero. You’re responding to the urgent, hot drive of Mars, never easy to handle and often best worked out in competitive sports or anything that requires concentrated and precise focus of a life/death quality.

Same day, Mercury makes a very speedy tour of Cancer thru 6/26. Wow, talk about thoughts moving at the speed of light. We’re all abuzz between what was and what is becoming. Although Cancer looks to the past, family and emotional security for stability, perhaps we’re recognizing this is both evasive and problematic. However, the next few weeks the mind is soothed by a certain level of nostalgia for what was, whether that’s warm milk for the belly or the spirit.

Don’t get too homebound yet though, as late night 6/11, early morning 6/12 provides an opportunity for appreciation of the unusual. Do something a little different on Saturday night, as your traditional Betty Crocker Venus in Cancer actually wants to go out instead of stay at home with her knitting needles.

6/12- 6/14 Sunday evening 6/12 re-triggers the walk softly carry big stick dilemma. There’s a question of power struggles, perhaps you’ve let someone else carry the stick and its time to see that which is rightfully yours. Moon in Virgo requires careful analysis of what’s actually going on and now have an ability to see the hidden dynamic of a situation. A sudden insight occurs mid-afternoon that drags us down into the details for the evening. Arm yourself with perspective and a good theme song, like this one:

I love this hour
When the tide is just turning
There will be an end
To the longing and yearning
If i can stand up
To angels and men
I’ll never get swallowed
In darkness again

(see * below)

This new quarter moon marks another turning point- Uranus goes retrograde thru 11/15. Unusual, seemingly senseless activity precedes all change. Changes are less obvious to the seen world, but deep impact appears in consensus reality mid-November.

6/15-16 Moon enters Libra as sociable exchanges and self-reminders to ‘make nice’ are useful, taking precedent over analysis paralysis. We may find more perspective through talking to others, and none too soon as long term goals need the type of attention that a good conversation will bring. When we talk and share, what seemed to be at cross-purposes finds a middle way. The enlightenment continues into 6/16, when communication supports insightful ‘a-ha’ ideas, liberated thinking and freedom from concept! No more nasty old concept, always telling me how things should be, comparing of apples to oranges! Well, maybe not enlightenment, but definitely freedom from at least one concept. (until the next one arises) Moon continues to support harmonious relationships into the evening.

6/17-6/19 Early morning may meet a spot on your work shirt but you don’t mind changing your shirt and the world is well. Yet he day doesn’t seems to understand where it’s going till mid-afternoon when Moon enters Scorpio. This weekend, we sense what we perceive as the message behind the message and this can bring up deep feelings. The feelings may be defenses against uncertainty. Utilize understanding and compassion the afternoon, evening of 6/18. Saturday evening is a good night to rent a movie, have a drink, enjoy some sense of losing your self as therapy for this so-called solid world.

6/19 wherever you’re going, make sure you get there before 1 PM when your carriage turns into a pumpkin, plans just fall apart.

6/20 especially mid-morning offers opportunity for good business interactions, make those calls now. Moon in Sagittarius is optimistic and good -natured and slightly opportunistic if the truth be told. There’s nothing wrong with that today, as kindly energy supports benefit through partnerships. This complementary shift is carried via Sun’s movement into Cancer today until 7/22. We’ve been busy communicating and relating in Gemini, now its time to pull in all those energetic linkages we’ve been so busy externalizing. There’s good reason to be a homebody; the myriad connections need to be stabilized in the feeling world. For the next month, nourishment is vital. What do we feed ourselves physically, emotionally, mentally, spiritually? Is it working? Look at your energy and see where you feel off balance. This immediately points to an area in which to up the nourishment ante. I’ll let you in on one final pearl of wisdom: self-care is Cancer’s secret weapon.

* song for you who feel the 6/14 energies strongly:

I live in this country now
I’m called by this name
I speak this language
It’s not quite the same
For no other reason
Than this it’s my home
And the places i used to be
far from are gone

You’ve travelled this long
You just have to go on
Don’t even look back to see
How far you’ve come
Though your body is bending
Under the load
There is nowhere to stop
Anywhere on this road

My heart is breaking
I cannot sleep
I love a man
Who’s afraid of me
He believes if he doesn’t
Stand guard with a knife
I’ll make him my slave
For the rest of his life

I love this hour
When the tide is just turning
There will be an end
To the longing and yearning
If i can stand up
To angels and men
I’ll never get swallowed
In darkness again

-Anywhere on this road -Anywhere On This Road from The Living Road by Lhasa de Sela http://www.bbc.co.uk/radio3/awards2005/profile_lhasaamericas.shtml

*for more Pema Chodron go to http://www.iloveulove.com/spirituality/buddhist/pemachodron3.htm

Taurus New Moon, Sunday May 8, 2005 1:45 AM PST

Taurus New Moon, Sunday May 8, 2005 1:45 AM PST

Dear Taurus,

I had a dream the other night; don’t let it confuse you, practical one. It is a good dream, with all the things you love: color, nature, beauty, companionship, food. Here it is, messy and fragmented as all good dreams are:

I am riding along the countryside, this blur of citron, vermilion blue, rolling and grassy. Hot pink blooms dot the country, a place both strange and intimately familiar. I am in a cottage farmhouse now, dancing with friends and we all begin gathering up our most valuable things, still excited with affection as we prepare for some mysterious ending, departure. I walk outside in the company of friends and look casually over my shoulder. The farmhouse is crumbling. Starting a slow disintegration, it collapses in a snakelike ripple of motion, front to back. I look up, the sky is deep midnight speckled with stars. I am with my mother in a kitchen, she is handing me eggs, which I will soon eat. I understand that these eggs are the fruits of her good karma, and while holding her eggs; my hands are empty and light. I wake up knowing I have work to do.

I begin with a dream, as a gentle assist for a sort of necessary unraveling you must experience to fully appreciate this new beginning. After spending the last few weeks in the delightful realm of the senses, continue more than ever to trust in what you taste, touch, smell, see, and hear. Now please enlist the aid of your sixth sense–to help you through dream riddles of all sorts–waking, sleeping, mine, yours or shared. Dreams unravel over the fullness of time, and if this moon cycle begins with a riddle, within it contains the well-calibrated answer just waiting for your ingenuity. Caught in the web already? Here’s another yarn I’ve spun for you.

Theseus was a Taurean hero who sailed to Athens to slay the Minotaur bull. The bull was eating Athens’ young nubile prince and princesses, think virtual springtime apocalypse. The bull lived in this elaborate labyrinth and only the most confident; bullheaded of warriors would even think of entering. Of course, that particular brand of hero never returned. As goes for all stories with happy endings, enter a woman. In exchange for passage off the island, Ariadne, daughter of King Minos, agreed to help Theseus by giving him a ball of magic thread. When placed upon the ground at the labyrinths entrance, the ball would roll and unwind of itself, leading Theseus to slay the beast and safely return. The plan works beautifully and Theseus takes off in the middle of the night leaving Ariadne, well, dissed. She has a thousand ways she could respond-she cries, kills herself, becomes a nun, remarries Dionysus– it was all a Dionysian hoax from the beginning, says the Greek chorus. But this is Ariadne’s story; let’s allow her rightful place. What is important is the value of her magic, a sort of power that hinges on a shoestring, a thread. This thread, the small magical thread connects her to solutions that surpass the riddles of the labyrinth. This is not silly shoestring logic– this is serious business. She saves an entire kingdom with a thread.

Threads are small, minute, tiny and weave together the fabric of life. Ariadne knows her wisdom lays in attention to the seemingly insignificant stirrings behind all obvious things. When like a ball of yarn she unrolls her perception to hide and seek where it leads, something magical happens- both the hero and the kingdom are saved. This is the power of knowing our own story, believing in our own self worth. Even when evidence to do so seems insubstantial or incomplete, this faithful attendance to deeper unfolding events overrides the players and circumstances that seem to hang around just for the sake of distraction and confusion. In such times, we can always restore value to the personal life by attending to the deeper needs of the situation, both another’s and ours. Honor those needs by acting on them; give these impulses toward life their rightful due. Then, by outwitting (or in spite of) our own warrior’s obvious and oblivious well-laid plans, we may mysteriously slay the beast.

Every New Moon is fertile; it is the cosmic egg of my dream, everyone’s dream that seeds every month with a new beginning, a new cycle. In the sign of Taurus exaltation, this new moon is fertile like springtime, fecund with growth. Neptune enters the scene as the planet of hazy confusion, addiction and distortion, the Bull running rampant through all of our plans. The Bull steps into the garden and there’s disintegration afoot. Is something falling apart?

With the lunation close to Venus, we want to give embodiment to something more viable for the future, something more sustainable, more satisfying, more practical and valuable. A backlash Taurean tactic may hold on to what it thinks it needs or values to the point of suffocating the life & beauty right out of it. What’s really going on? The presence of Mars and Pluto suggest that it’s about our personal expression of purpose, power in relationship & self worth, and what exactly undermines this. If you can hold the space for looking deeper, you open to a reserve of power and resolve. Here enter some magical aspects that allow for ingenious solutions, solutions for reaching beyond the script of habit, not so ingeniously acted and re-enacted. Allow yourself to plumb your personal experience, to attentively apply your imagination and intellect in a new way. What needs to be done now to plant good seeds that weave the threads together instead of splay into crazy directions? Are you working with or against your own wholeness? The risk is seeding a new cycle with the hazy confusion or self-deception of not owning your power or control in a situation. Always we can find serendipitous solutions by looking beneath appearances to our own motivations, where we need sharpening and clarifying. How we do this is the mystery of the new moon, magical with beginnings. It allows you a secret seeing to glimpse behind the veils of your own being, the key to your big dream. Arms linked with friends, glance over your shoulder and watch the collapsing house fall. You are living in a world of mystery; honor the mystery by following its thread. Outwit the beast in the face of fated fairy tales and save us all.

The planetary beat

The major event of 5/09 is Venus’ move into Gemini, preferences move from sensual indulgences of the flesh to cavorting in the playground of the mind and its infinite variations on love. Tastes and relationships become both fickle and changeable as we find ourselves willing to experiment and play while committing to none. For the next month, find your pleasure in conversation, exchange of information and changes of environment. This Venus is always ‘on’, on instant messaging, on top of the latest trend or fad and always, always ready for a witty comeback or intelligentsia to parlay. This Venus may go for a roll in the hay, but she’s really rolling you around in mind and may forget to be here now, in the body.

5/10 the energy is lively and fresh, moon in Gemini. Late morning finds you receptive and impressionable to new ideas. Go to bed early tonight, late evening loses the lightness proving too heavy for our liking.

5/11 early morning is good for important calls, moon moves into Cancer late morning thru 5/12, as we settle into self containment, looking for our own natural rhythm instead of getting caught up in the buzz. Moon in Cancer, her home sign, likes to hunker down and emotionally stabilize. But lately a certain Cancer clan has noticed this moon to highlight instability in the face of security she’s trying to create. Perhaps Moon in her own sign needs a little more attention, she says: ‘your taproots are important! Lets make sure everything’s going smoothly in the lunar seascape of emotions, home, foundations’. This instability may be due to the changing declination of Moon in Cancer and Capricorn over this year and next.

5/12 Mercury moves into Taurus. A long drawn out hmmm-This is the planet of quick on your feet in the ponderous slow moving sign of the bull. The mind has been all caught up in Aries since the beginning of March (due to retrograde) so we’re certain to notice a change. Slow down, we’re no longer running with scissor-thoughts. Have you enjoyed your keen inventiveness and fast paced thinking, or maybe it’s a relief to no longer mentally beat yourself up, martial style? Relax, now the mind is deliberate, slow and a little stubborn. Soothe mental woes by being in nature; find that it’s valuable to use all of your senses to accumulate information. No quick decisions as we let it all settle inside before reaching a conclusion. It may be hard to change minds and influence others for the next month, as exchanges touch on personal values and these run deeper than mere words allow.

5/13 Moon is out of sorts today making it hard to get routine things done until evening. Happy Friday the 13th when she moves into Leo, ready to get onto a fun weekend. There’s a nice stabilizing Sun sextile Saturn all day Friday. There may be promotions at work, or the supportive nod given from authority figures. Don’t forget to recognize your own authority, as the time is right to wield kingly or queenly power with grace and gratitude. Esteem is important right now, and we want recognition for our own unique contributions. Do Leo moon right-give mad props to your royal court! 5/14 continues a spirit of fun loving affection, breakfast is remarkably pleasant and the evening jovial and warm. An aspect perfects today that can give us insight into an entrenched situation, supplying a creative compromise at the right moment. This evening, watch the weekend move from warm to hot on 5/15.

5/15 is a day of sudden changes and interesting happenings. You will not be bored with Mars and Uranus cavorting. Think Billy Idol’s rebel yell, sudden upheavals and rebelliousness are the rule of the day. Exercise caution when driving or interacting in relationships you’ve left on simmer for too long; they will surely boil over if so provoked. Alternately, exciting new developments and rampant enthusiasms run the gamut and back. Allow yourself to follow these, within the limits safety allows.

5/16 first quarter moon in Leo feeds off yesterday’s energetic buzz. New plans, excitement and a sense of urgency all back up the desire to break free and move forward. But is there anything behind all the rough and tumble? Moon moves directly into Virgo asking for attention to the details as we question how our new revelations fit into reality, we’re either busy buttressing a situation or someone’s cold busted when it doesn’t stack up.

5/17 The morning starts with some blips and jolts but come lunchtime everyone’s amenable to the just desserts of Venus and Jupiter. Optimism and generosity sweeten up our attitudes; a little loving goes a long way today. Use this day to give unexpected gifts make or take special plans. With a beatific smile on your mischievous mug, make nice after all your acting up this weekend. 5/18 The astrological weather vane once again shifts direction, and quickly as Venus made good, she abruptly changes the plan right when you were getting to the good stuff! Fickle Venus, what turned her on yesterday, now turns her off. You show up at the airport, roses in hand, and it turns out she’s got a new favorite. Fortunately, Mercury and Uranus are on speaking terms. By talking it out, we can appreciate the discovery of our different perceptions, preferences and tastes.

The moon still in Libra 5/19, parallel to Jupiter mid afternoon and Neptune goes retrograde. Plan to take it easy tonight, let off steam by gabbing with friends, exchange stories about this week’s turbulent ride. Sip wine, sit by the sea and appreciate the beauty of the natural world as the Sun tiptoes through the last degree of the bull.

5/20 Sun moves into Gemini propelling us forward with the energy of a Mercury Mars sextile. Over the next month, basically we find we’re functioning at our best with lots of room to move. Normally with Gem, we expect more talk than walk but with Mars starting us out maybe we’re finally able to act on our own keen observations. Gem’s calling card: no boredom allowed. Expect diversity of conversation, opinions, plans and predicaments as Gemini lives for the experience of getting her hands in everything. If you’re prone to nervous mental chatter, you’re experiencing the Gemini predicament. Channel this by changing your environment or mind- when your battle cry is’ don’t fence me in’ try the sport of fencing. There’s plenty of room to move if we can use mental restlessness in the service of exploring new options. Tonight: early evening, energy is blocked or fatigued but there’s potential for a healing interaction shortly thereafter, initiating us into the healing waters of Scorpio.

5/21 Moon in Scorpio and we’re heart-sensitive, discussions evoke deep feelings and we sense the undercurrents of what is and is not said. If you’re looking for a breakthrough, find support late evening.

5/22 we’re set up for an interesting full moon lunation. Communication is obscured or distorted with Mercury square Neptune; our minds are impressionable and foggy. What is really being communicated here, what exactly are you thinking? It’s hard to know for sure when Miss Understanding comes to town. To fan the flames of Miss Thang, the presence of a Venus Mars square emphasizes communication differences and not so subtle passive aggressive behavior. This really undermines her natural facile ease. Logic holds no sway now, so stop your swings at the perfect intellectual KO and let the sea tide take him out.

New Moon Aries Solar Eclipse, Friday, April 8, 2005 1:32 PM PST

hey man
evening on the ground
and there is no one else around
so you will
blame me
blame me for the rocks and baby bones
and broken lock on our
garden
garden wall of eden
full of spiderbites and all your lovers
we were
we were born to f*** each other
one way or another
but i’ll only lie
down by the waterside at night

– from Down by the Waterside (Lilith’s Song) Iron & Wine*

To be alive is to be burning. -N. Mailer

New Moon Aries Solar Eclipse, Friday, April 8, 2005 1:32 PM PST

We’re easily caught up, the pace of life is the quickening of beginnings. All the personal planets except Mars in cardinal signs, in the ‘getting on with things’ manifesto of Aries its easy to feel our trailblazing energy. The energy is impulsive, like a knee jerk reaction to the bondages of winter, what made it through is alive and kicking. God bless him, the pope finally left in body, but in spirit his death has renewed age-old arguments.

As the cycle unfolded from the full moon two weeks ago, Easter rose like the holy ghost, with Venus and the Sun and brought the feminine back to life. We see powerful women in the news, her tragedies and triumphs. Unfortunately, this is the state we meet her, Terry Schiavo kept artificially alive for years, with no life of her own save the machines of science, to which we owe her mechanized breathing. Nourishment is so vital to the feminine, and we meet her eating through tubes, counter to Venus’ love of food’s sensual pleasure. For Venus life without sensual pleasure is a life not worth living.

Jane Fonda just published a book ‘My Life So Far’, a self-described ‘lightening rod’ personality. She was the outspoken heroine, both Barbarella and war activist, truly a Venus in Aries type. She speaks of self-sacrifice, how she changed her self for every man she partnered with by becoming whoever he wanted her to be. She’s also still defending her anti-war stance 30 years later, some Vietnam Vets still call Hanoi Jane a traitor- for visiting and dialoguing with the ‘enemy’.

I’m reminded of Lilith, the original Eve. Completely written out of history by the Church’s secularization, her story is found in Hebrew texts, the Talmud. Lilith was Adam’s first mate, they fought all the time. She wanted equality and he disagreed. She wants to be on top some of the time, he wants her beneath him. And so, she leaves. Enter Eve as the domesticated good girl, a stepford wife accepting her place as lower than Adam’s. Eve fed Adam the apple, but it was Lilith (now the serpent according to the new bible) who gave Eve the apple. As women, we feel this story in our bones, grieving a little bit each time a woman is judged, suppressed, denied her voice or even natural life cycle. We feel Lilith’s banishment to the netherlands of the earth, understanding her choice of life without personal relationship as a sad consequence to one filled with inequalities.

Aries energy is ‘the beginning’ part of ‘in the beginning’- Arian beginnings appear straightforward and intuitively logical, the rush of spring. Straight shooter Aries so quickly forgets the road behind, the mountain climbed, and this leads to unnecessary battles & false starts. Impulse doesn’t have memory; in the rush for ‘beginning’ we may forget that each of us has a larger score card to settle. The tools may appear as worldly forms of new achievement and acquisitions, but we’re tooling around in the soil of the original garden – our agreement to the very essence of truth to self and others. This is the agreement drawn for us, before time, by the infinite. A contract beyond the life events of periodic costume changes, the obligations we’re here to make good. What is the mission you’ve been elected by us all to fulfill? If you’re growing & evolving us all, you’re shaking the tree to make good on this promise.

We sense this in the solar eclipse; part of a series of eclipses Saros 129 includes 80 eclipses spanning about 1,425 years, the last one occurring March 29, 1987. For this series, history reflects issues of secular vs. sacred power, regime changes, sexuality and procreation. Lilith’s legacy of banished identity became sexualized; what was one part of her became constellated into larger than life shaming. Remember, this ‘original sin’ was born of inequality, not lasciviousness. What happens when something essential is denied? Lilith/Eve has become all the guilt of Eden-sexually wild, untamable, and free to love whomever she pleases, not to be confused with lack of moral fiber, contrary to popular opinion. Case in point: So-called ‘Desperate Housewives’ women want to enjoy the accomplishments of housework and vibrant sexual lives. Simultaneously, perchance? Now that’s good viewing! The only desperate thing about this show is America’s starvation for some apple pie eroticism. Certainly this has nothing to do with the current moral climate of conservatism. All hail the erotic life!

Eclipses have the potential for unexpected shake-ups, beginnings and endings, the variation in intensity depends on how it aspects your natal chart. To some degree, almost all of us have begun a new phase in life, one chapter beginning, and one closing. If this is hard to discern, that’s the nature of eclipse- out of the blue happenings occur just as easily as obscuration & removals. Due to the positions of Venus & North Node with New Moon all square Saturn, in this new road you’re trailblazing, you have the potential to create great change and thus great karma aka consequence of action. Before you move ahead into that gleaming Ferrari promise of desire, look in the rearview mirror. Take stock: Yes, that’s you, gorgeous. You are in the driver’s seat and where you are now in life is a consequence of every choice you’ve made. That’s power for you alone, to make choices even when appearances dictate the circumstances. Reflect on this and give yourself, in true Arian spirit, a running head start.

4/08 The New Moon, Sun, Venus and Node in Aries square Saturn. This emphasizes the frustration and pain of relationship or financial needs right now; what you want is at odds with the reality of the situation and this is painful. Maybe someone has left the picture. Pallas Athene, the Goddess of truth-to-self faces off with Juno, Goddess of loyalty to another. This powerfully procreative eclipse impels us: ‘do something’! Turn your frustration into initiative; let yourself get caught up in a passionate scheme of your own initiative. Warning: the time is ripe for troublemaking, too. Fantasy is heightened with Mars and Neptune float with New Moon in a too good to be true trine. The movie ‘Sin City’ opens this weekend, perfect for this combination of edgy sexuality meets illusion.

The end of the weekend begins Sun square Saturn seriousness, exact 4/10 and the trend can be felt a day earlier and extend through mid-week. Sunday is a day of effort; obstacles may appear Herculean and irritating. Remember some obstacles are a matter of mindset, others are quite tangible. We may sulk or continue forward until mid afternoon throws a confusing curveball. Watch for overexertion, as you push and possibly suffer a setback. Take a break, its all enough to test the patience of a saint. Late evening, sleep restfully in the accomplishment of knowing your limitations.

4/11- 4/14 Over the next few days, strange passive-aggressive behavior is king (see 4/13). Some reprieve comes on 4/12 when Mercury goes direct for less hassles in transportation, communication, paperwork and computer snafus. An early morning glitch is just course-correction. By afternoon, we’re optimistic and clear-minded, more or less.

4/13 is a charismatic day that starts of with a potential misfire- an early morning Mars/Neptune exact conjunction. With this ambiguous and slightly off focus pair, sexual/physical energy meanders and easily finding itself in a whole lotta trouble without really knowing what happened. Mars rules cars so pay attention while driving. This energy extends backward and forward a few days. Later in the day 4/13, intensity and focus create opportunity for greater precision. Exchanges of value, financial or interpersonal, are best accomplished late evening.

4/15-16 Venus enters Taurus on a Moon in Cancer day. ‘The safety of objects’ makes us feel loved and secure– possessions of people and things provide satisfaction. For the next month, love is the art of mutual appreciation in relationships and bank accounts. The pleasures that money can buy, yes, but also the sensual abundance of nature and creature comforts like good food and company. Remember, true style, just like true appreciation of another’s essence, cannot be bought or sold. Venus in her home sign teaches us to value meaningful indulgences of the senses. What is an essential pleasure for you? We learn that by treating ourselves we enhance self-worth.

Venus provides fodder for the evening of 4/15, when we may feel emotionally tested by all we think we don’t have. Saturn on this first quarter square commits to a course of action, within limits. By the evening of 4/16 things are upbeat and chatty, carrying through Sunday 4/17, as both are a green light for fun with friends.

4/19 Sun moves into Taurus finding the collective turn toward natural resources, where to find ’em, how to keep ’em. No doubt, oil, liquid gold, continues to headline the news. Like any good Taurus, we want to use our inner resource to create wealth & substance. Now is the time to appreciate the earth with early morning nature hikes, anywhere with scenic, lush vegetation. Springtime fruits and vegetables bloom, buy from your local farmers market. Gardens beg to be sown, dirt never smelled so clean. Mother Nature makes it look so easy-so don’t forget to give gratitude on Earth day, 4/22.

4/22 moon in Libra joins Jupiter for some attitude of gratitude. Early morning generosity extends throughout the day, enhancing our relationships. The evening is sweet and soulful, perfect for enjoying music, artistic or spiritual pursuits.

On 4/23 the moon fills up with light for a full moon lunar eclipse in the sign of the Scorpion. Like the soap opera ‘Passion’, magnetism is high and relationships have potential for hopeful new developments. The light of the moon has almost reached her maximum, yet the sun crosses her path for some temporary obscurations. Stay tuned-

****From the EP release Woman King

http://www.pitchforkmedia.com/record-reviews/i/iron-and-wine/woman-king.shtml

For you with email firewalls or delicate sensibilities, I use f*** to kindly soften the 4-letter word.

Sometimes the angels are cursing gravelly-voiced men from Florida. Hallelujah! Sam Beam gives us a heartfelt tribute to rescue and revive the inner feminine- as shamed, repressed and ultimately heroic.

‘Let Love Eclipse Your Fear’ Bonus: In perfect timing, I received a solution for this New Moon’s Saturn (fear) Venus (love) conflict. Right now, I’m saying this prayer for you: Let Fear eclipse your Love no longer!

A psychology professor asks his students for their thoughts on Love and Fear. The music is Love and Fear by Morcheeba. (you’ll need flash)
http://members.shaw.ca/yofrizb/