Full Moon in Ardra Nakshatra
The full Moon peaks near 15 degrees sidereal Gemini, opposite a Sun and Mercury in sidereal Sagittarius, tonight at 10:28pm EST. The Moon is full in the Vedic nakshatra of Ardra, the “moist one,” a stormy and turbulent place in the zodiac. Saturn and Jupiter are still within one degree but growing further apart tomorrow, ending the planetary war they have waged since December 12th. The Moon will wane its way into the New Year before beginning the first lunar cycle of 2021 on January 13th.
Gemini Full Moon
The lunar cycle began with Sun and Moon at the tail end of Scorpio, in the gandanta zone that bridges Scorpio and Sag’, before moving into Sagittarius soon after for a Sun cycle with flavors of both signs. With the Sun in Sagittarius we try to find our power by aligning our actions with our beliefs, seeking higher purpose in a set of teachings or philosophy that speaks to and inspires us.
With the full Moon illuminated in Gemini, we check in with our Mercurial side, searching for what is practical and fun rather than more serious and “important” feeling. Gemini helps us to see both sides of the coin, or to step into someone else’s shoes, which can help us to see past our own staunch belief systems by which we try to live. It can help us to be a little more flexible, and a little bit less dogmatic, in an age that feels so philosophically polarized across the globe. Hopefully this can help set the tone in the new year, giving us the ability to both live by our beliefs while being willing to dialogue and consider those that are opposite.
Ardra itself is a stormy and turbulent place in the zodiac. It is ruled by Rudra, a fierce form of Lord Shiva, and is associated with many violent and explosive moments throughout history. With the full Moon here we could see acts of outrage, or literal storms that may ravage some parts of the world tonight. Represented by a teardrop, this nakshatra elicits the sensation of grief… grief that must be processed in order for us to move forward. Under the illumination of this full Moon it is a good time to examine your own grief and allow the heart to churn it through so that something new may grow.
The Jupiter-Saturn conjunction turned into a planetary war from December 12th through 30th, while the two planets transit sidereal Capricorn within one degree of one another. Both may have suffered because of this … Saturn, who has put the pressure on this year as he transits his own sign, was probably not able to hold most people in total “lockdown” mode this month as many broke free of his fetters and enjoyed the holidays, whether still in their homes/pods or associating with more friends and family. Jupiter, the giver of hope and inspiration, was also suffering due to the war, and is also debilitated under Saturn’s rule here. The two made a glorious visual in the night sky over the past few weeks, coming closer in conjunction than they have in 800 years.
They will continue to transit Capricorn in conjunction until Jupiter enters sidereal Aquarius on April 5th, until a retrograde cycle sends him back into Capricorn from September 14th through November 20th. Jupiter is debilitated here and though he gets a bit of a boost from Saturn, inspiration, hope, and education will flourish more while he is in Aquarius rather than with Saturn in Capricorn.
Personal Chart Readings with Coaching Are Available Here
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.
Full Moon September 1st, 2020
The full Moon this cycle peaked at 10:22 pm PDT on September 1st, in sidereal Aquarius, opposite a Leo Sun. We continue to experience the Sun, Mars, Saturn, and Jupiter all strong in their own signs, with Jupiter aspecting both Mars and Sun to create some powerful energies across the globe. This offers many auspicious moments during the day for initiating certain activities (specific to your activity and location), but also keeps the fire element high in the atmosphere, sparking aggression or literal fires if we do not channel it into dharmic action.
Aquarius Full Moon
The Aquarius full Moon is the peak of the Leo cycle. This cycle started strong with the Sun in his home sign, inspiring us to let our inner power shine forth into activity. Power is often corrupt, however, and the fire of the Sun often burns, and we have seen an amplification of political vitriol, violence, and wildfires over the last two weeks.
The opposite of Leo is Aquarius, or Kumbha, “the pitcher.” This Saturn-ruled sign emphasizes service to society more than individual power. It is this service that is actually the higher manifestation of what we can do with that individual power. People in positions of leadership (Leo energy), including government authorities or the leaders of a family, have a responsibility to use that power to take care of others. While the full Moon is illuminated here, we can reflect on how to pour our power into the world in ways that benefit all, rather than keeping it for selfish or abusive means.
Shatabisha, Star of Healing
The Moon aligns with the Vedic nakshatra of Shatabisha, “the hundred physicians,” or “hundred medicines.” This star-sign encourages us to source all means of healing, physical, emotional and spiritual, drawing on our various inner and outer resources. We may find that it is an alternative healing method that yields the most progress for us. Its deity is Lord Varuna, god of the cosmic waters. Water medicine signifies cleansing, in a much more deep and gentle way than the purification by fire offered on the opposite end of the zodiac. It is a potent antidote to the firey energy of this month.
Mars and Jupiter, Retrograde/Direct
Mars and Jupiter are both slowing towards apparent stationary “stops,” as Mars prepares to turn retrograde on September 9th (through November 13th), and Jupiter prepares to turn direct on September 12th. These stationary dates add strength to both planets, as their reflected light shines directly at us in a very focused way. Within Aries, and amplified by Jupiter, this Mars could result in some explosive energy around the 9th, but also offers a lot of horsepower for launching a new venture. Philosophical movements, and clashes, could be high around the 12th as Jupiter stations and begins to move forward again.
The nodes, Rahu and Ketu, are nearing the end of their journeys through Gemini and Sagittarius, respectively. They will transit into the next signs, Taurus and Scorpio, on September 23rd (mean node calculation; it happens on September 19th using a true node calculation). This will shift the subconscious churning and “shadow work” that we need to do into a new area of life for the next year-and-a-half, also shifting the houses over which we will experience the eclipses during this time. This is a good time to check in with your own chart to see where this transit will be affecting you, personally.
To see how these transits affect and interplay with your chart and karma, you can request a personal reading here.
Guru Purnima Full Moon Eclipse 2020
Tonight’s Full Moon in sidereal Sagittarius is the auspicious one known as Guru Purnima, a day for honoring our teachers, especially the satgurus and saints who bring light and truth to the world. The Full Moon peaks at 9:45pm PDT tonight, July 4th, and is accompanied by a penumbral lunar eclipse that peaks at 9:29 pm PDT. Though visible from the Americas, Africa, and Western Europe, this eclipse only brings a partial shadow across one side of the Moon. Its effects are being felt profoundly, however, during this cycle of change that has come with the two prior eclipses this summer.
Guru in Sanskrit is often translated as dispeller of darkness, or ignorance. We live with so much suffering as humans, because even through a lifetime most of us are still immature to a degree that we haven’t found peace with the bounty offered to us by divine creation. That is not to say that hardship and real suffering does not exist, but great souls and saints, and even many elders who have “lived through it all” have still been able to find a certain equanimity towards life’s difficulties, along with compassion and an attitude of service, however small, for those who are hurting.
In Yoga Sutra 1.33, Patanjali says:
maitri karuna muditopeksanam sukha duhkha punyapunya visayanam bhavanatas citta prasadanam
“By cultivating attitudes of friendliness toward the happy, compassion for the unhappy, delight in the virtuous, and disregard toward the wicked, the mind retains its undisturbed calmness.”
We could dive into a full discussion of all of these, especially in these trying times. In the last point “disregard” could be also understood as indifference or equanimity … though I believe as humans anger has a place on the path to this level of peace. But the Guru has the ability to bless us with a grace to move beyond this anger and into a place of peace and spiritual strength, despite whatever outside circumstances may be.
The Moon joins “Guru” (Jupiter) in his home-sign of (sidereal) Sagittarius this year. A bright, retrograde Jupiter can be seen close to the Moon tonight… though the south node Ketu also brings his (usually) invisible presence here, creating the shadow effect that will pass over the Moon. (Though of course the actual shadow is a result of the earth’s position, Earth, Sun and Moon are aligned with Rahu and Ketu astronomically, signaling the eclipses.)
Sagittarius is aligned with the galactic center, and is the active fire sign of Jupiter, a planet who guides our values, ideas, and philosophies. This eclipse cycle (including the eclipses of June 5th and June 20th) has brought up a lot of the shadows inherent in our cultural philosophy and values, stirring the pot over such things as hygiene (coronavirus management), race, and of course politics. During tonight’s eclipse, through dedicated practice and Guru’s grace, we may have the opportunity to see some of our cloudy thinking and remove the shadows of ignorance, both individually and collectively, that have hindered us through history.
The Guru Purnima Full Moon eclipse aligns with the Vedic nakshatra of Purvaashada, “the undefeated.” This star-sign brings strength as well as love and compassion, with a feminine energy ruled by Venus and the deity Apas (water personified). It is a place where we may battle over ideas, but ultimately truth will always be victorious in the end.
The nodes have been harnessing strength over the course of this year since mid-February when the Kala Sarpa cycles began (the two weeks of each month when all planets are on one side of the nodal axis). As the Sun moves into sidereal Cancer on July 15th, this will break the cycle, making these periods impossible through the end of the year. These cycles are not entirely rare, however, so we should not attribute current events to this alone (they have been happening every year for the last several.
Jupiter and Saturn continue their retrograde cycles through the fall, giving us an opportunity to dive deep into our philosophies and values and the structures we use to support these, making change particularly at the macro level as they travel through their homes signs of Sagittarius and Capricorn, respectively. Mars will also gain strength when he enters his home sign of Aries on August 16th, and then going through a retrograde cycle from September 9th through November 13th.
Personal readings are available Here to help you navigate this time.
New Moon Solar Eclipse June 2020
This week’s New Moon coincides with an annular solar eclipse, the second in a set of three eclipses we are experiencing this summer, as well as the summer solstice. Tensions have been running hot under the pressure of the nodes, the eclipses, and the position of the planets. The exact New Moon time will be at 11:40 pm PDT on Saturday, June 20th, with the maximum eclipse occurring one minute later. This new Moon and eclipse align with sidereal Gemini, in the nakshatra called Mrigashira, and are accompanied by four retrograde planets.
Mrigashira is translated as “the dear’s head” or “benevolent,” and brings forward the gentle energy of the deer. Generally this could bring some relief, during turbulent times, but the fact that the Sun will be eclipsed here could cause us to feel cut off from our inner power and knowing. Mrigashira has been depicted as a deer at the edge of a burning forest (in The Book of Nakshatras, Trivedi), and if startled or confused may accidentally run towards the fire. This is something to be aware of during the eclipse period, which often causes anxiety and confusion. When I refer to the eclipse period I am counting the couple of weeks leading up to the first eclipse of the cycle (June 5th) through the final eclipse of the cycle on July 4th.
The deer and Mrigashira are known for searching and wandering, so if we are using the intelligence of this nakshatra and eclipse, it is possible to distill some answers and discern the proper direction to choose if we have been wandering. Gemini’s ruler, Mercury, is sva in his own sign and joining the Sun, Moon and Rahu during this eclipse, as well as retrograde, adding great intellectual strength and ability to sort out details during this time (if we are not overcome by Rahu’s shadow energy). Spiritual practice and meditation are the remedies we must utilize during this time, to find clarity and groundedness amidst the overwhelming shadows and turbulence that can be brought by the nodes.
This New Moon will initiate a new lunar cycle in sidereal Gemini, compelling us to examine both sides of a situation, be come more flexible and light, and discern whether we need to stay still or change directions. Gemini is a bipedal (two-footed) air sign, offering a lot of mobility to us during this cycle. It is a masculine sign (directing energy outwards) ruled by Mercury, offering us the chance to speak out and let our words go forth into the world. With Mercury retrograde at the same time, we can slow down and deeply consider the way we speak. This is a supportive alignment for us to continue conversations on race and justice, reframing our language with consideration and self-reflection to aide in progress.
Four Retrograde Planets
Four planets — Saturn, Jupiter, Venus, and Mercury — continue to travel in retrograde motion during this time, with Saturn, Venus and Mercury gaining double strengths by being in their own signs (sidereal Capricorn, Taurus, and Gemini respectively). This offers us the chance to harness intelligence from these planets as we do the inner work around their themes: responsibility and commitment, as well as society’s structures (Saturn), relationships, nature, boundaries, and compromise (Venus), and discrimination, equality and communication (Mercury).
As Jupiter is traveling in retrograde motion he will soon leave his debilitation in Capricorn and re-enter his own sign of Sagittarius, on June 29th. Joining Ketu, this will again offer us the opportunity to dive deeply into our ideas and philosophies, especially around justice, politics, and how we act on our beliefs. Dismantling these themes and their faulty paths through history will continue to be a theme, further uplifting a movement for change in support of #BlackLivesMatter and social justice in general.
The summer solstice is Saturday, June 20th as well, and marks the turning point in the Sun’s solar cycle this year. The Sun will be at his northernmost course, offering the longest days in the northern hemisphere and the shortest in the southern, and will appear to keep the same path in the sky for a few days before beginning to creep towards the southern sky again. The light is bright, and the opportunity to connect with our highest self and highest ideals is strong. The leadership and courage within is available… BUT, heed the eclipses! Make sure you are acting from a point of groundedness, clarity, and benevolence, not power-crazy arrogance, as the Sun is at this point in his cycle. The Sun’s powerful rays are able to help us to burn off our own impurities and negative tendencies if we use his light to look at ourselves and what needs to change, rather than focusing on what is wrong outside of us or in others.
Personal readings are available Here to help you navigate this time.