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August’s New Moon in Leo ~ Being the Light and Catching the Wind

August’s New Moon in Leo occurs on the 18th at 8:42 pm MDT. She conjoins Mercury, the Messenger planet who brings illumination, and forms an inconjunction or quincunx aspect to Saturn in Capricorn, which defines our lives and levels of maturity.

She also creates a fiery trine to Mars in Aries which represents our drive for survival, forms a sextile to the North Lunar Node in Gemini, which shows us options, and semi-squares Venus in Cancer, who loves emotional security and family.

Ruled by the Sun, Leo highlights our life force. It involves our intrinsic birthright, the inheritance that we receive from the Giver of Life and Light.

When the Moon is in Leo, it serves to brighten the light of the Sun more than merely reflect it. When the energy of the Moon merges with the energy of the Sun in Leo, we can imagine the happy partnership of unconditionally loving parents who want nothing more than their offspring to shine. Positive expressions of this celestial partnership are willful action, creative self-expression, and joyful revelry. If the energy of the light is blocked or suppressed, it can be acted out in dramatic ego-driven, attention-seeking displays.

Saturn is currently retrograde in Capricorn, the sign it rules, taking us deeper into the arena of rights, responsibilities, boundaries, lessons, and, hopefully, maturity and wisdom. Saturn will remain in Capricorn for most of the rest of 2020, only moving back into Aquarius in mid-December, a few days before the Light returns on Winter Solstice.

We were given a glimpse of our limitless potential as humans when Saturn dipped into Aquarius in late March of this year. Its retrograde journey and proximity to retrograde Pluto and Jupiter in Capricorn demands that we claim ownership to the totality of our collective legacy. The Universe is giving us the chance to right wrongs and heal wounds beyond our imagination.

Everything we are experiencing now – the darkness and the light; the fear and the love; the greed and the generosity; the evil and the kindness; and every other polarity we can conjure, is part of the collective consciousness that we have shared for eons.

In Capricorn, Saturn’s boundaries are limited by our definition of humanity. Leo represents will.The inconjunction between the New Moon in Leo and Saturn in Capricorn can be resolved if we willallow ourselves to expand our current definition of what it means to be human. Our limits and boundaries can expand beyond our imagination.

Our his/her-story shows us that we often have to go backwards to go forward. With several planets and asteroids in retrograde motion now, that lesson is being broadcast across the skies and into our souls.

In January of 2020, during a moment of exquisite clarity, I noticed that the Sun’s light had shifted in a way that defied logic. During the 9 o’clock hour of the morning, the skies donned
the cloak of twilight. I simultaneously received the message to remember the light.

Those three words ~ remember the light ~ continue to give me hope.

When I was not quite 10 years old, Ms. Greene sat on the steps of our auditorium’s stage in our Catholic school. Her remarkably short, fitted kelly-green shift dress brought a breath of fresh air and color into the room. Her flowing red hair draped over the neck of her acoustic guitar as she cast a spell on us with her rendition of Bob Dylan’s song, Blowin’ in the Wind.

For several New Moon cycles now, the questions in Dylan’s lyrics have been reverberating in my mind. I see Ms. Greene in all of her height, color and confidence, and I hear her voice ring with clarity, passion and possibility.

That we will catch the answers to them in my lifetime is my prayer, still.

With great blessings of light and love.
Always love.
~ Christina

The ripples, waves, and tears of Pisces ~

February’s New Moon cycle in Pisces brings us closer to all that is Sacred. It reminds us of our connections – to our hearts, our joys, our tears, and each other. It asks us to let go, to listen, and to trust what shows up.As I write this, in the dark of the Balsamic Moon, I know that her light will return tomorrow, Sunday, February 23, 2020 at 8:32 am MST. Tuning in to the rhythm of Earth’s lunar phases helps me to flow with life rather than struggle against it. In this place, I discover that the gifts of the darkness are equal to those that exist in the light. It’s quiet here. There is spaciousness and a sense of mystery. A palpable sense of healing support envelops me. I am not alone. We are not alone.

I’ve been honored to witness the transitions of myriad brave fellow human and animal beings in recent days, months, and years. Life is tenuous and impermanent, yet when I view it with the lens of Pisces, it also feels strong and everlasting.

The power of Spirit never ceases to astonish me. It is present in the arms of a comforting embrace and eye contact held without the need for words. It shows up when we step outside of our expectations long enough to be surprised by the kindness of others. It flourishes in the richest source of healing liquid on the planet – our tears.

Ripples ~ waves ~ tides ~ feelings ~ emotions.

How do we navigate these forces of water in our world?

When the Moon is new and in Pisces, if we trust enough, the answer arrives. We simply have to show up. It is as simple and challenging as that. If we’re courageous enough, we’re blessed beyond measure.

Here’s to showing up, diving in, and trusting the ebb and flow of life and love.

With great blessings, gratitude and grace,
~ Christina

Full Moon in Aries ~ A Flock of Geese

The Sabian Symbol* for October 5th’s Full Moon at 12 degrees Aries is A Flock of Geese.

When we consider how the flock flies in formation, we notice that the geese alternate the role of the leader ~ taking time to rest when needed by moving to the line of the V formation,
and/or  moving up to the front and leading when strong. In this way, the success of the whole flock is served, and their mutual goal of reaching their destination is realized.

Given that the highest expression of Aries is met when its opposing sign of Libra is honored with equal consideration, this is a perfect symbol for today’s Full Moon. It encompasses the wisdom of nurturing and caring for the self (Aries’ mantra is I Am), while considering what will work for the good of the whole (Libra’s mantra is We Are). It also helps us redefine how we see leadership ~ all of us have our gifts, and none are better, nor more valuable than another’s ~ only different. In fact, we all win when each of our unique (another Aries word) gifts are acknowledged and shared (Libra’s aim).
Wild Geese

This Moon ramps up a few aspects that have been encouraging us to take our turns as leaders in the world. First, it squares Pluto in Capricorn, which has been asking us to transform the way that we define – and allow our lives to be defined by – power. Personal Power, Authority, Systems, Institutions, Norms, and Mores are all under scrutiny – and have been for some time now. We are being asked not only to question whom or what we give our authority to, but also to reclaim it for ourselves. Pluto in Capricorn is also squaring Jupiter in Libra right now, which asks us again, to grow and expand our sense of shared power – power that is harmonious for the whole.

When people talk about the intensity of this Full Moon, I believe that the square to Pluto has much to do with it, along with the fact that Aries is ruled by Mars – which wants what it wants – when it wants it! 

When I see challenges like this in a chart, I always look for the gifts. The energetic patterns that can help us with this potentially combative, warrior-like expression of Aries, are found in the Full Moon’s trine to Saturn in Sagittarius, which encourages an expansive redefinition of boundaries and structures. It seeks the higher truth and wants liberation from confinement. When we add the gift of Saturn’s trine to Uranus at the end of Aries to this equation, we see another channel for connecting to the flow. We can express our uniqueness by making changes that support our freedom. Uranus always wants us to stretch our Saturn boundaries. It pulls us from the realm of the personal planets into the transpersonal ones, where evolution beckons.

By all means, this Full Moon encourages us to breathe into the space of peace when riled, to move in ways that let stagnant or repressed energies be felt and expressed, to ground in to the Earth’s strength and be willing to step up the game and demonstrate our gifts. However, at the same time, like the geese, we can step back and nurture our selves, and rest as we’re guided, knowing that the whole of us is better served when we are balanced and strong.

*The Sabian Symbols were channeled in the early 1900’s by a blind woman who used her inner sight to identify visions for each degree of the zodiac. They are used by astrologers around the world for their wisdom.

May the Full Moon’s blessings illumine our world ~ for the highest good of all relations.

Full Moon in Aries

~ Christina

Connecting the Lines…still.

light ~Connecting the Lines ~ 

After September 11th. After the Writer’s Workshop. After driving into the rain that comes at you sideways, straight on, reaching its destination despite the massive rock faces that line the highway. After the jackrabbit leaves its safe stand of still-golden aspen and blue spruce and bounds across the open meadow even as a red-tailed hawk circles the twilight sky.

September 12th, 2001 ~

“Look, mom, I’m an airplane!” she squeaks, belly down on her U-shaped swing, tiny four-year-old feet running on the threadbare grass as she approaches it then lifting up as she takes off laughing with unbridled joy. I hear her squeals and I want more than anything for everyone on Earth to know this moment. Her laughter, though, rings out to a silent sky on this late summer afternoon. She twists her swing now, winding around and around and through my tears I glimpse her white-blonde hair twirling against the deep green grass as she lets go, spinning swiftly, freely. Dizzy squeaks of delight intercept my thoughts of peace and grief and together they become a prayer.

October 6th
 ~

I walk up the 13 stairs of my redwood deck and I see my husband on the couch watching the Texas-OU football game while our four-year-old daughter sits on the floor playing animal doctor with her stuffed husky dog. The one that resembles our real husky, Sasha, whom we buried on a snowy evening last November.

Their backs are to me and I hear my daughter say, “Hey Dad, are the guys in the striped suits there to make sure nobody cheats?” He begins to explain, “Well, sort of-” But then she hears me close the gate. “Mom is home!” she screams, running to the front door, her blue and yellow plastic stethoscope flying from her neck as she jumps
up to my open arms and we squeeze each other so tight it almost hurts. Then we squeeze each other some more. As we sit on the couch her Sasha dog tumbles in a black and white spiral to the floor. She picks it up, makes sure the band-aid is still stuck to her fur and hugs me again.

When she gets off of my lap to get her stethoscope, I turn to my husband kissing him first just behind his left ear because I know that gives him goosebumps and his right one does not. He turns off the television and waits for me to tell him about my trip, his face a question. But because I know he loves football about as much as I love writing, I turn the tv. back on and relax back into his arms. “I can wait,” I say. “No, really, I’d rather hear how it went.” “Yeah, mom, tell us,” our daughter says as she grabs the remote to silence the game.

“Well,” I begin, “the first animal I saw was a jackrabbit soaked in the pink light of sunset running out of some golden aspen trees into a meadow. Then I drove through rain that came out of the sky sideways, straight at me! And, there were dogs there that you wouldn’t believe,” I say, noticing her eyes get bigger along with her smile. “One dog, named Bandit, was chestnut red,” I tell them, “and at lunch he jumped through the air and stole a burger out of a guy’s hand without even touching anything but the burger.” We all laugh and she quickly asks, “Can you tell that one again, mom?”

“Wait,” I answer, “because there is another story about a dog who was this tall,” my hand stretched out as high as my hip, “who chased two stray cows out of the yard until they jumped over the fence into their pasture. She was an Irish Wolfhound with long gray hair the color of the ashes in our wood stove.” “There was another Irish Wolfhound, too,” I continue, “that was the color of the television screen when it is turned off. He was very wise and he had three legs instead of four. He had two legs in back and one in front—
“Why did he, mom?” she interrupts, “well, he had cancer,” I reply.
 “Like Sasha?” she asks.
 “Yeah, a little bit like Sasha,” I say quietly.
“Oh,” she whispers.

And I know that these are the stories she will ask me to tell her over and over in the days ahead. Always with new questions pouring out of her: what was on the burger? was it a veggie-burger or a meat burger? did the three-legged dog have a tail? did the other wolf-dog jump over the fence after the cows? and on and on until she connects the lines for herself.

October 7th
 ~

We used to have this ritual every Sunday morning where we made breakfast together. Whole-wheat oatmeal pancakes, wildberry and real maple syrup, vegetarian sausage, and fresh-squeezed orange juice. They surprise me with it today. It is so delicious it reminds me of the meals I had at the writer’s workshop in the mountains, meals cooked by people with enormous love in their hearts.

It is the middle of the day. I am on the living room floor finishing a collage I began on September 15th. Around me are scissors, cloud-covered poster board, glue sticks, and countless images so full of heart it makes me ache.

I start with the one my daughter picked, the American flag—at half-mast—high above the Rocky Mountains, distant shapes of violet and indigo as the sun begins to rest. My daughter thinks that every flag she sees is a prayer, and a part of me kind of agrees with her.

Now I glue on the close-up black and white of two women holding hands at a makeshift memorial, their tears mingling together as their faces touch side by side.

I am trimming another now, the tiny boy, sandy brown hair cut in a bowl around his face framing his small wire-rimmed glasses. He stands, hands folded under the flag on his Old Navy t-shirt, in the middle of a crowd of Muslims on their knees in a prayer to Allah, his puzzled face contorted in fear and pain.

Above him, I place a small shot of two hands; one black, one white, clasped together in prayer.

Next to that, the human chain wrapped around a mosque at an interfaith ceremony in Denver.

Now, women from Iran, black shawls covering all but their eyes, mourning for us all.

At the bottom I place the throng of people gathered in downtown Chicago at noon on Friday, September 14th, the day of remembrance, the moment of silence.

Finally, the schoolchildren from London, sending their sorrow to us from abroad. Clad in crisp blue and white uniforms, sitting atop their wooden desks, they express condolences with wisdom beyond their years.

In the middle of the collage I place the quote by Lucille Clifton:

Things don’t fall apart. Things hold. Lines connect in thin ways that last and last and lives become generations made out of pictures and words just kept.

It is late. Quiet. My family is asleep. The waning moon is just beginning to rise over the ridge east of our house. I listen to the last thin line of water in the stream as it journeys to a larger body of water somewhere in our world and I write it all down.

After September 11th.
 Sideways rain.
The jackrabbit bounding out of its safe grove of aspen into the meadow at twilight. I connect the lines.

September 11th, Fifteen years later ~
I pause, grow silent, light candles, and pray, remembering and honoring the force that binds us all, and fosters our growth beyond imagination: Love.      Version 2