New Moon April 2021
The Moon and Sun join to make a New Moon at the very end of sidereal Pisces at 10:31 pm ET on the dark night of Sunday, April 11th. This will begin a lunar cycle in which the Sun spends most of his time in Aries, his sign of exaltation. Jupiter, one of the outer, slower-moving planets, has transited into sidereal Aquarius, breaking rank with Saturn who remains in Capricorn.
We enter another lunar cycle during which the Sun begins in one sign just two days before entering another, where he will spend most of the lunar cycle. Pisces is the last sign of the natural zodiac, the end, a place where we connect with the unseen world including the underworld itself. Aries, on the other hand, is a place of beginnings, the true springtime energy where the literal sunlight gives life to the world once again and things begin to grow outwardly. This cycle will connect these two worlds for us, bringing much of the subconscious into light as we begin to take on more activity during this season.
The Sun and Moon begin joined with a debilitated Mercury, which can make us pass up practicality in favor of hopes and dreams. Jupiter rules this femenine (inward-looking) water sign.
The Sun, Moon and Mercury are all in Revati nakshatra as we begin this Moon cycle. The final of the 27 Vedic nakshatras, this sign has to do with journeys, and is ruled by the deity Pushan, the protector of journeys, flocks and herds. We can imagine in particular the journey from life to death as this is the final journey that we all make. Revati means “the wealthy” and is also related to Mercury, Vishnu and Lakshmi. There is a strong association with animals and this nakshatra, and many people with planets here have a strong love of pets or animals.
Jupiter has moved from sidereal Capricorn into Aquarius, lightening his load as he is no longer in his sign of debilitation and joining the heavy presence of Saturn. Jupiter in Aquarius could stimulate some expansion in social programs, scientific innovations, and forward-thinking across society. This new position could stimulate some movement in your life depending on natal planetary positions and the current dasha (planetary period) and bhukti (sub-period) you are running according to your chart.
Mars will leave Taurus just hours after the New Moon, finally parting ways with Rahu, lessening some of the intensity that has built up around their conjunction the past couple of months. His movement will also break the Kala Sarpa cycles, although with only one outlier the nodal alignment can still bring some intensity to current events or those born with these placements in the birth chart.
This New Moon is followed by nine nights that are the springtime celebration of the goddess known as Chaitra Navaratri. These nights are celebrated in homage to the divine mother in her many forms, particularly Durga. This is not as largely celebrated as the fall-time Navaratri (Sharad or Maha Navaratri), but is also significant. This leads us up to Hanuman Jayanti which will be celebrated around the time of the next full Moon.
Full Moon March 2021
The full Moon is in sidereal Virgo this Saturday night, coming in full opposition to the Sun at 2:48 pm ET on Sunday, March 28th. This full Moon is in the Vedic nakshatra of Hasta, “the hand,” signaling our opportunity to be more hands-on in crafting our own reality. The Sun joins an exalted Venus in Pisces, who is currently combust due to the close proximity of the two. Mars and Rahu are also in close conjunction, raising volatility in the world during this full Moon. Jupiter will soon transit into Aquarius, leaving his debilitated transit with Saturn.
Virgo Full Moon
The Sun is currently transiting Pisces, Jupiter’s water-sign that drives us to connect with our inner strength through deep emotional exploration, seeking a purpose greater than ourselves to which we can fully surrender. With Venus also in Pisces (exalted here), our hearts are yearning for this purpose and higher power. For some people, this alignment could stimulate a desire to escape the mundane world. There is the option to do this through intelligent means like spiritual practice and inward-looking journeys, or the potential to choose over-indulgence in escapist drugs, alcohol, or bed-pleasures. Some structured journey-work that integrates the two might be an opportunity this lunar cycle.
During the Virgo full-Moon, the Moon and our minds are illuminated with the energy of the sign that is opposite to Pisces’ deep-diving other-worldliness. In Virgo, we practice managing life’s details and being hands-on through our own efforts. Ruled by Mercury, the planet of the intellect, Virgo is an earth-sign where we figure out how to organize our lives sensibly, very much relying on the material plane to do so.
Within Virgo, the Moon is full in the Vedic nakshatra of Hasta, “the hand.” Under this star we find our inner artisan, our craftiness, our skills at manipulating the world around us, both literally and figuratively. As we approach the coming Moon cycle, during which Sun will enter exaltation in Aries, and our impetus towards action and initiative will come alive brightly, we can try our hands at creating something we wish to manifest under the light of the Hasta full Moon. Hasta is ruled by the solar deity Savitri, and is also one of the Moon’s nakshatras, whose animal symbol is the powerful female buffalo.
Venus, Exalted and Combust
Venus is exalted in the sign of Pisces because Pisces gives us the opportunity to align our desires, relationships, and pleasure-seeking (Venus) with something that aligns with our values and principles (Jupiter, Pisces’ ruler) and is bigger than or beyond our normal, waking, mundane lives (Pisces). Through this month of Venus’s Pisces transit, try to take the opportunity to re-align your romantic and pleasurable pursuits with that which gives you the most meaning, be it your spiritual or philosophical values or a sense of higher power in general.
During Venus’ combustion, however, the Sun is so close to Venus that we cannot see its light at all, and some of the pleasure of life may feel like it is being “burnt up” before it reaches us. Unfortunately, Venus is spending his entire time in Pisces combust this year. Venus has been highly combust (within 3 degrees of the Sun) since March 14th. He remains highly combust during his whole exalted stint in Pisces (March 16th – April 9th), save for the last few hours when he is still quite combust within 4 degrees of the Sun. This is good time to dig deep for the more austere pleasures of life… connecting with the divine energy that is still present even when worldly pleasure may not be.
Mars and Rahu
There has been an uptick in violence the past week as Mars and Rahu came closer and closer together. Their exact conjunction will be on the early morning of March 28th, the night of the full Moon, which could bring even more acts of terror or chaos. In Rohini nakshatra, a sign of commerce, this could have an impact on the stock market and might trigger some extreme volatility there, as well.
Jupiter will transit from sidereal Capricorn into Pisces on April 5th, finally parting ways with Saturn after spending most of the year conjunct and under his debilitating rule in Capricorn. This transit could allow for more opportunity and inspiration in your life, especially in the areas ruled by Jupiter in your personal natal chart. It signals a progressive time for philosophies across society in general, and we can expect to see more progressive and less restrictive movements gaining traction across the world.
Jupiter will enter retrogression in June, putting him back in Capricorn in September for a while before he finally re-enters Aquarius again in November.
Personal Chart Readings with Coaching Are Available Here
New Moon in Libra and Diwali 2020
The Sun and Moon will join at 29° sidereal Libra tonight, with exact alignment for a New Moon at 12:07 am EST. This Dark Moon night commemorates the Hindu holiday of Diwali, the festival of lights. Tonight will actually be the third but main night of the Diwali celebrations, which began on Dhanteras on November 12th. Be sure to light some candles tonight to celebrate light itself, as we move into the darkest part of the year in the north.
The Sun and Moon again join at the very end of one sign, sidereal Libra, before both moving into Scorpio later the same day. Hence we are beginning the cycle of the Sun in Scorpio, but flavored with a certain Libran energy. The Scorpio Sun cycle is a time that compels us to look deeply into our own deep well of emotion, as Scorpio is both a water and insect sign, driving us towards the flow of emotions that is trapped within our external protective shell. Ruled by Mars, the warrior planet, we can see Scorpio as a spiritual warrior, and this time of year is an important one for exploring our personal vulnerabilities and sensitive places that may need more strength, courage, and healing.
Flavored by the Libra position of Sun and Moon as we begin this cycle, this investigation may lean heavily towards studying how we behave in relationships, what drives us to find balance and compromise, what wounds we are protecting that are keeping us from enjoying the happiness and balance that Venus wants to offer us.
Remembering that while Sun is debilitated in Libra, our sense of strength or our literal health may be weak this month. We continue to contemplate what it takes to maintain our personal strength and not become depleted while also relating with others and seeking outer balance. This is a very important time of year to nourish ourselves, and our inner light, as the outer light is descending. You can also make some herbal tea to nourish yourself during this vata (cold and dry) season. The nature of the Scorpio cycle will show us where we carry inner imbalance that requires some more harmonizing and lightening.
The Sun and Moon join in Vishaka nakshatra, a sign that bridges the end of Libra and the beginning of Scorpio. The “two-branched” sign is ruled by two deities, Lord Indra, the chief of the Gods, and Lord Agni, fire personified. This sign can harness a lot of power and leadership ability, but only once we choose the proper direction. You may find yourself at a crossroads this month and need to call in your guides to help you to choose the right direction, after which a lot of success is possible. The animal symbol for Vishaka is the male tiger.
On the new Moon of the Hindu month of Ashwin (this month), we celebrate Diwali, the festival of lights. The festival began this year on November 12th (North America), on the 13th waning Moon phase of the previous cycle. This day is known as Dhanteras, or Dhanvantari Tryodashi, the celebration of the birth of Lord Dhanvantari, the father of Ayurvedic medicine. If you practice any healing tradition, especially Ayurveda, it is a good day to give thanks and call in auspicious blessings to your healing path or practice. Diwali is strongly associated with the Goddess Laxmi, and is a powerful time to connect with her, calling in her blessings for both material and spiritual prosperity.
We celebrate Diwali while the days are getting noticeably shorter and darker, and it is a time to invite more light into our lives, our hearts, and our world. This festival celebrates the victory of light over darkness, which is something to rejoice in and have faith in, even if we can’t outwardly observe it sometimes. Creating positive vibrations internally is the best way to begin growing and spreading them externally.
Diwali also commemorates Lord Ram’s and Sita’s return from exile after fourteen years (a story from the Ramayana). Lord Ram embodies the highest qualities of dharma, devotion, compassion, courage, and leadership. Diwali is also the start of a new lunar cycle, so it’s a great time to go within and summon these qualities to awaken and live through you.
Diwali (also seen as Divali, Deepawali or Deepavali) comes from the Sanskrit words deepa (light) and avali (row). It is traditional to light candles throughout Diwali (opt for electronic tea lights if you’re in a fire danger zone!), inviting the highest light into our homes and lives. The candles are lit to remind us of the inner divine light in us all. Though one flame can be used to light many others, it is not diminished by sharing its power of illumination. We can pray for the peace and happiness of all beings, and each one’s awareness of their inner light.
We are now entering the “eclipse season,” as we approach two eclipses that will occur November 30th and December 14th. With the nodes having recently moved onto their new axis—Rahu in Taurus and Ketu in Scorpio—this could activate some latent energy that has been lurking, unresolved in the shadows, in the areas of life that align with these two signs in your Vedic natal chart.
Be sure to watch for any disruptions, and any red flags, over the next month, and be sure not to make hasty decisions out of stress. Sadhana is very important, especially during the eclipses themselves, and doing inner work to investigate what is arising can serve in helping us to make important changes. This is the first eclipse cycle of three that will occur over the next year-and-a-half while the nodes transit this axis, so it is a jumping off point in seeing what work we need to do in these areas of our lives.
To see how the current transits affect and interplay with your chart and karma, you can request a personal reading here.
Full Moon and Election Astrology
This week’s full Moon reaches maximum opposition to the Sun at 10:49 am EDT on Saturday, October 31st, in sidereal Aries. The Moon will be full in Bharani nakshatra, “the bearer,” a Vedic star-sign that relates to both birth and death. The energy of the full Moon here creates a powerful portal between the realms of the living and non-living, a potent setup for both Halloween and the Mexican Day of the Dead celebrations.
Bharani spans the middle of sidereal Aries, with the Full Moon at 14° this month. It is known as “the bearer” and is represented by the womb, but its deity is Yama, the Lord of death. People with planets here, especially the Moon, often work in fields relating to either birth or death. It is a creative nakshatra that allows us to birth visions into being, and also a powerful spiritual sign that allows us to let go and compost the old in order to rebirth it into something new.
Aries Full Moon
The full Moon in Aries is opposite the debilitated Sun in sidereal Libra. Sun has been traveling through its sign of debilitation this month, which usually coincides with the onset of cold and flu season in the northern hemisphere, where 90% of humanity lives. The Sun relates with our vitality and strength, and when it is in Libra, a sign of balance and compromise, we may find that we become depleted as we attempt to create more harmony in the world around us and pay less attention to our personal strength. Self-care routines are most important during the Libra Sun cycle, which is running this year from October 16th through November 14th.
At the full Moon point of this cycle, the Moon becomes illuminated in Aries, the opposite of Libra. Ruled by Mars, Aries is a sign of personal strength, empowerment and action. It reminds us of our inner strength and gives us the opportunity to bring forth the light of individualism during the Sun cycle of Libra, a sign of partnership and compromising with others. The Aries full Moon time is a point of balance, where we learn to harmonize the desire to compromise with the ability to retain autonomy in a healthy way.
Mars and Mercury Retrograde
Both Mars and Mercury are still traveling in retrograde motion, through Pisces and Libra, respectively. Mercury will come to a station before beginning direct motion on November 3rd, election day. As the planet of the intellect, he will give us a sharp, discerning ability to make rational choices that are balancing. This bodes well for the U.S. election in terms of bringing more balance and practicality into the minds of voters in this polarized and radicalized democracy… though in the short-term, it could indicate an abundance of “balance” in terms of a close race in terms of numbers.
Astrological Presidential Potential
Joe Biden has at least as good a chance of Trump at being president, according to his astrology. A Scorpio rising with Sun in the first house, his tenth house is Leo, the house of career landing in the sign of government and kingship. His Rahu is also in the sign of Leo, indicating strong ambition in those arenas (and his career as a politician aligns with this natural tendency). Four of the last five presidents had either Leo rising (Trump, Obama, G.H.W. Bush), Rahu in Leo (Obama, G.H.W. Bush, as does Biden), Rahu in 10th (Trump, as does Biden) Sun in Leo (Clinton) or Sun in the 10th (G.H.W. Bush, Trump; Biden’s Sun rules the 10th). An association between Sun and Rahu with either the 10th, Leo, or the 1st are the common threads that we see in this group relating to the ability to take on the large governmental leadership role of President.
Of these men, only Trump has Rahu joining the Sun, which is also his lagna lord (ruling planet), bringing him fame while creating a kind of extremely intense personality that plays out in his professional life. Trump was elected just at the beginning of his Jupiter mahadasha (planetary period), a planet that indicates wealth in his chart and also activates some status elevation simultaneously. Trump also has a debilitated Moon afflicted by Ketu, and though full, creates many internal challenges to the mind.
Biden is in his Jupiter>Rahu bhukti, the last phase of his Jupiter mahadasha. In his chart Jupiter is also a strong planet (stronger than Trump’s, with its dual exaltation and retrograde status), also positioned to indicate wealth and success. Rahu is in his 10th house, Leo, indicating a strong desire and ability to come into a position of leadership. As the last bhukti of one mahadasha, this phase a lead-up to his Saturn mahadasha that begins in 2022. Saturn is also a strong planet for Biden, with double natural strengths (positional and retrograde), opposite both its ruler Venus and the Sun.
To see how the current transits affect and interplay with your chart and karma, you can request a personal reading here.
New Moon and Navaratri
Tonight brings the dark Moon, coming towards a Moon-Sun alignment to begin a new Moon cycle on October 16th at 3:31 pm EDT, at the very end of sidereal Virgo (29°46’). This is also the start of the autumnal, Sharada or Maha Navaratri, which celebrates Goddess Durga and many forms of the goddess through on each of the first nine nights of the waxing Moon this month— October 16th through 24th in North America this year.
Though the Sun and Moon align at the end of Virgo, they will move together into sidereal Libra only a few hours after the New Moon moment, thus beginning a lunar cycle with the Sun traveling through Libra. Libra energy is about balance. It is ruled by Venus, the planet of pleasure, harmony, and beauty. In a world that feels so imbalanced, our collective and individual energy will shift in ways that attempt to create greater balance, more compromise, and hopefully more harmony and beauty across the planet. The full Moon on October 31st will highlight Aries energy, Libra’s opposite, drawing us towards expressions of individual strength and will.
The Sun is debilitated in Libra, because when we strive to compromise and take care of others we often do so at the expense of our own self-care. Remember that self-care is especially important this month when the Sun is at its weakest, and the seasons are changing from Pitta to Vata time across most of the northern hemisphere. In Ayurveda this seasonal junction is a good time to do some light cleansing but nothing that is too depleting as we move into vata time.
Mercury, Mars Retrograde
Mercury and Mars are still traveling in retrograde motion in Libra and Pisces, respectively. Mercury will station on November 3rd, election day in the U.S., sending his focused rays of attention and balance towards us. This could be favorable for bringing more rational and practical equilibrium into the political system. Mars will station and turn direct on November 11th, also directing some potent energy towards us, this time martial in nature which could stimulate some violence or fires, though not as drastic as we saw around his last station on October 3rd.
This new Moon aligns with the Sun under Chitra nakshatra, “the brilliant.” This star-sign correlates with Spica, the brightest star in the sky, and bridges Virgo and Libra. It is ruled by Vishvakarma, the celestial architect. Moving from Virgo to Libra it combines both the energy of precision and perfection with that of beauty and grace. What are you trying to construct in the world that could use more architectural precision as well as beauty? This is a good time to call in this energy and channel it into any projects on your plate. Be careful that your inspiration does not lead to overindulgence under this intense nakshtra, whose animal symbol is the female tiger.
The New Moon this month brings one of the largest Hindu festivals of the year, Maha Navaratri. Navaratri means “the nine nights,” and beginning with the first Moon phase after the dark Moon, the Goddess Devi is celebrated through many forms for the following nine nights and ten days. In North America Navaratri will be celebrated from October 16th through October 25th, with October 25th being the 10th day of Victory (an auspicious time for starting new endeavors, after 9 nights of worship). In some places Navaratri celebrates the goddess Durga in nine of her forms, while in other parts of India the festival commemorates Durga/Kali, Lakshmi, and Sarasvati for three nights each.
Devi is the creatrix, the warrioress, the nurturer, the purifyer, the protector. She can be found in the innocent and fertile maiden as well as the wise and learned crone. She is both the nurturing mother, and the one who gives “tough love.” The impassioned lover, the devoted bhakta, the disciplined yogini. We see Devi appear through us in innumerable manifestations. Through her many forms, she teaches us and offers us countless blessings–love, compassion, courage, learning, discipline, surrender, success, enlightenment, and bliss.
This festival is a time for honoring and celebrating the supreme feminine power in all her glory, and the many blessings she bestows upon us. Stay tuned for daily updates on how to connect with the many forms of the Goddess.
Full Moon October 1st 2020
The Moon waxes into fullness tonight during this purnima (full Moon) moon phase, reaching exact opposition to the Sun on October 1st at 2:05 pm PDT. The Full Moon is in sidereal Pisces, opposite a Sun who is traveling through sidereal Virgo. It will be in the Vedic nakshatra of Uttara Bhadrapada, a sign that forces us to dive deep and find inner transformation through purification (or cremation) by fire. Jupiter and Saturn have recently gone direct, and Mars moves slowly on his retrograde course.
Pisces Full Moon
Pisces is a water sign ruled by Jupiter. This is a place of deep feelings, big inspiration, and a longing for the things of our dreams and imaginations. This lunar cycle began with Sun and Moon in Virgo, setting a tone of practicality and an earthly influence, ushering us to slow down and assess whether the details of our life are in order. Under the Pisces Full Moon, the opposite side of us is illumated, wherein we allow our hearts to open wide into inspiration and higher purpose. Our biggest dreams and visions may not always be practical, but here we welcome the possibility of the impossible.
Those with a strong watery side may feel especially sensitive under the Pisces Full Moon. It is also a good time to connect with the spirit realm, while psychic forces are strong. Abstract art and work on the subconscious will be especially supported now… while those with escapist tendencies may find themselves really wanting to check out. Since the full Moon is a balancing point in the cycle, allow the earthy Virgoan energy in, and connect with something solid (like the earth itself) to make sure you remain embodied while you dive into the dreamscape.
Uttara Bhadrapada is the nakshatra (Vedic star-sign) that indicates fire and transformation, such as that of a funeral pyre. It is a place where we must learn to let go of mundane attachments and relates with the mystical energy of kundalini. We must be careful not to get lost in the rabbit hole here, but to forge determinedly into the depths instead.
Jupiter and Saturn Direct, Mars and Mercury Retrograde
Uttara Bhadrapada is ruled by Jupiter, who stationed and began his direct motion on September 12th. With Jupiter moving forward again, you may find things in your life indicated by Sagittarius and Pisces in your natal chart are also beginning to progress after some delays. Jupiter is now on the tail end of his journey through his home sign of Sagittarius. Having traveled somewhat into Capricorn in the spring before beginning his retrograde motion, Jupiter will return to Capricorn once again on November 18th.
Saturn has also stationed and just barely begun direct motion, on September 28th. His gaze is still strong and pointed at the moment, as he barely appears to move, and this brings more pressure and restraint to us as a society, and especially in governmental affairs. We will feel his weight pressing down on us more soon … with a likely resurgence of Covid-19 cases and stricter measures on society. There was some lessening of the sensation of pressure during his retrograde journey, which began in mid-May.
Mars continues his retrograde transit and will soon leave Aries heading back into Pisces on October 3rd. This may lessen the intensity of the fire energy sweeping the American West at the moment… though he will gain power again when he comes to a station and turns direct on November 11th. Mercury will run his retrograde course from October 13th through November 3rd.
Nodes Change Signs
The lunar nodes, Rahu and Ketu, transited from Gemini and Sagittarius into Taurus and Scorpio, respectively, on September 23rd (mean node calculation; under true node calculation they progressed on the 19th). This is an important planetary movement as they will hold their new position for the next year-and-a-half, and will stir the pot along this axis particularly during eclipse periods which come twice per year. The next eclipse period is from mid-November to mid-December, with eclipses on November 29th/30th and December 14th.
With Rahu in Taurus and Ketu in Scorpio, we will feel stuck in a struggle between trying to find earthly pleasure, and a sense of “grounding,” while continually facing constant change and a call to transform and let go of material attachments. This is a very broad sentiment, of course, and the nodes will take more specific effect on each individual depending on the rising sign and the planetary positions of one’s natal chart.
To see how these transits affect and interplay with your chart and karma, you can request a personal reading here.