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.