I’ve often believed in the power of instant karma, the idea that what goes around can (relatively) instantly come around, makes sense to me. I trust that life ultimately fair, while knowing I may not fully understand what that means yet. But instant transformation is a harder sell. Excepting a temporary, superficial makeover, the work of true, deep change is a slow process. I guess it’s the psychologist in me: I am suspicious of shortcuts. I want the real.
Confession time: I’ve always had a fear of not being liked. Caving in to social pressure, via the desire to please another person rather than bare the uncomfortable pain of disappointing them, is probably my biggest and most persistently troubling life lesson to date. For me, this is no small problem, no minor flaw that I can brush under the carpet. I’ve sustained psychological and physical damage to my body from “people-pleasing.”
I am not going to give you a destination. I can only give you a direction – awake, throbbing with life, unknown, always surprising, unpredictable. -Bagwan Shree Rajneesh
Eclipses make waves. Some are big waves like the sea at high tide; others are more like small ripples. In breaking waves, eclipse season can deliver difficult news, like the announcement of death or illness, or wondrous, a birth or true love. Others are quieter, but carrying no less impact, for if our life resembles a placid lake, emotional ripples can jar something loose within, deeply inside. We may become unmoored by what we discover there. Whether we’re receiving messages from our unconscious, experiencing a symbolic or literal birth or death in our life, all eclipses beckon toward a distant and unknowable future. The degree to which we feel an eclipse varies person by person, but during eclipse season about this we can be certain: we’re tossed about on a sea of change and the messages and events of this time will change our consciousness. [Read more...]
One of the first presents I gave my husband was a surfboard. He wanted one really badly. Surfing was a point of contention in his first marriage. I knew this because, more than several times during those first few years, he bristled with defensiveness at the possibility of anyone (me) encroaching on his Saturday morning surf time. I reassured him that I supported his independence, and the hobby that I knew symbolized so much more than a hobby for him, but no matter how many times I said it, that old wound would resurface.
Walking the streets, the air feels different; people’s expressions are growing starker, more reserved. The Autumn Equinox signals the time when our psyches prepare to go inward. Whereas the dance of summer is an outward & external play of expression, like Matisse’s celebratory painting Dance, autumn’s portrait is the bittersweet mortality of life.
Steven Forrest links Last Quarter Moon phase people to Autumn Equinox’s Mabon. Mabon is the pagan ritual of thanksgiving; the last quarter is that pivotal point when the moon, once full, is leaving an old cycle but hasn’t yet begun anew. Last Quarter Moon people have an acute awareness of change, the ephemeral nature of life. They are oriented towards release, endings. The poignancy of harvest in the face of decay certainly matches the primacy of feelings that arise in autumn.
I was born during the Moon’s last quarter. The dramatic changes that have happened in my life have created continual crisis in consciousness (which is what Demetra George calls this Moon phase). These crisis, were never outwardly visible, experienced only in the privacy of my soul. When I was younger, the many events that required an epic leap in consciousness terrified me, cracked me open, then eventually writing, art, archetypes and ritual became ways of facilitating ongoing catharsis. As a result, the stuff of life that bothers many – petty grievances and annoyances, the small stuff – don’t often get to me. As I grow older, I appreciate this small grace.
At this Equinox, let go of the small stuff. Take time to reflect on your harvest. Include the spiritual and soul gifts that endings have given you, endings of relationships, eras, jobs, homes. These gifts are invisible to the naked eye– the fruits of laborious work that you accomplished in your soul. After acknowledging what you have, offer something of your self. Give a few coins to a street person, pay it forward. The reason for a harvest feast was dual: to offer thanks -and- to acknowledge the role of Gods/Goddesses in that harvest.
Fall Equinox is always marked by the Sun’s entry into Libra, the sign of relationship. We can turn over a new leaf in our relationships by letting old feelings go, forgiving someone, or looking at our disappointments from a spiritual perspective. Here’s a few questions you can take with you into the upcoming Full Moon in Aries. At Equinox, we’re at a time of endings. In allowing that ending to fully occur it yields a new beginning.
Think about a relationship you’ve had in your life that still give rise to difficult feelings. Maybe it didn’t last or go the way you wanted it to, you haven’t forgiven them, or judged yourself as a failure.
- Did they overtly or serendipitously influence a major life decision you might not have made without them?
- Did they influence a big or small choice- to go back to school, start a business, move to another state, pick up a book, take a trip -that influenced another decision that absolutely changed your life?
- Did this person serve as a catalyst in your life, offering you their influential, dynamic or disruptive energy so that something else could take place?
- If you felt you shouldered an unfair burden in the relationship, what personal strength did you develop as a result of carrying that burden?
I had just made a pilgrimage the scene of my own personal nightmare, a place where I was once taken by the darkness, stripped of illusions, lost my personal power (& almost died): I attended my 20 year High school reunion. Eventually, many years later, I realised I had been under the slow burning influence of Pluto (in Santa Fe, my natal Twelfth House Pluto relocates to my Ascendant) explaining why every time I returned to Santa Fe over the years it was like jumping from the frying pan into the fire. Case in point: 2001, when I moved back home and got a job waiting tables. Then 9.11 happened. The economy shut down, and wracking up a huge debt, being re-wounded by old but still present family trauma, I left again. After that, I was sure I’d never be back. After that (as one of my high school girlfriend soul mates reminded me this weekend), I declared I will never come back again…at least not without a sage stick. How appropriate that I finally return as Pluto moves stationary-direct. How Pluto.
As a writer, I experience periodic blocks. I don’t think creative blocks are exclusive to artists. People experience life blocks all the time, periods in your life where despite your best efforts and intentions (or maybe because of them) the things you try to do just don’t seem to get traction or go anywhere. It’s as if, as I described the downside of a Neptune transit to a client recently: God presses the pause button. Then patiently waits for you to figure out that you can’t repeat the same thing you’re doing and get different results. Since you don’t have an answer, or know who or what to be yet, you might as well draw a picture, noodle around on your ukulele, chant mantras and play at being Zen. Till one day you wake up to discover you’re in a place of self-acceptance, you no longer have the same problems you once did… and you’re actually enjoying your self. [Read more...]
Astraea, the Goddess associated with Virgo, was the last immortal to live on Earth, until she left in disgust, so disturbed by humanity’s wickedness, evil and corruption. If she was truly a Virgo, she probably also developed a digestive, respiratory condition or other physical ailment from all the pollution, too. Nonetheless, Astraea became part of the starry constellation we call Virgo and when the planets pass through her piece of the sky, we too become peevish, turning a critical eye on our life, our world. All the things that we wish were different annoy us. We easily see what needs cleansing, organising, fixing, improving. Astraea’s legacy to us was the urge for a more perfect existence. [Read more...]
There are only a few people I speak to consistently on a weekly basis: my husband and my therapist. My husband is a Leo, and my therapist is an Aquarian. As I interact with entirely different personalities, I receive very different gifts. Affection, play, fun-loving antics are the Leo’s specialty. An entertainer exemplar, he makes serious business of clowning around, and his generally sunny disposition makes him impossible to be down around. A human being like all of us, he can demonstrate those other, less attractive Leo qualities, too…and that’s where the Aquarian comes in. The Aquarian has the mental clarity of a fresh spring. The Aquarian, who is innately at odds with collectively agreed upon reality, brings in different angles, tools and perspectives. Pulling on experiences the collective doesn’t or won’t acknowledge, she has over time won the hard-earned wisdom of a truthsayer. [Read more...]
Do you see me? Do you see? Do you like me?
Do you like me standing there? Do you notice?
Do you know? Do you see me? Do you see me?
Does anyone care? -Ode to My Family, The Cranberries
As an introvert, I doubt I’ll ever feel comfortable being the center of attention. While getting onstage, being in front of or even standing out in a crowd, well, the lump of fear to simply get up and put it out there is so large that I want to flee. Yet there’s nothing more invigorating than taking to the stage and expressing my Self. At some point, sometimes mid-way but always afterwards, I feel on top of the world. I feel powerful strong and fearless, like I can do and accomplish anything. I feel my Sun. [Read more...]