Now IS Later: The Practice of Charity

For now we see through a glass, darkly; but then face to face: now I know in part; but then shall I know even as also I am known. So now faith, hope, and love abide, these three; but the greatest of these is love.
— 1 Corinthians 13:12-13

Pisces full moon yearns for communion with the divine: how do we not feel alone, stay in connection with love to ourselves, each other, the earth and universe? No small task…today our body just might need a lot of sleep and rest (and dreams) to heal. The full moon in Pisces invites us to surrender and empty out, and allow what is coming to come, and trust that you can ride it. How to find that trust? The original translation of the “love” in the Corinthians passage above was “charity.” The traditional meaning of charity is more like “loving kindness,” a service toward both ourselves and others, which may first involve deeply feeling (probably old) emotional pain to open your heart and stay connected to the present—and somehow trust the process.

In the Moon tarot card, ruled by Pisces, little paisley-shaped yods rain down from the moon, combining solar and lunar energies to incorporate changes into the human body. The yods fall between two towers. The towers here are called herms, pillars of Hermes, which were designated boundary markers in the ancient world. It is interesting to see this image this week as we pass the 18th anniversary of the 9/11 attacks, as they may present to us as “twin towers.” In the realm of Pisces, a foggy energy without limits or clarity, the herms represent a crossroads, a boundary to what is known. How do we move beyond the boundary set in stone and trust we can stay grounded? Or do we just float away? The moon reminds us that there is not a straight path to spiritual evolution.

Another energy that is pushing toward surrender and expansion of boundaries this week is the position of Saturn turning from retrograde to direct on the south node of the moon, which is a kind of karmic bathtub water drain. In Kaypacha’s astrology forecast this week, he made a joke about the karmic wake up call of Saturn at this point, how we might always have a tendency to put things off that we need to do until “later,” whenever that might be. But when Saturn, who is keeping track of your soul’s “progress” here on earth is in the nook of the south node, “Now IS Later.” The time is up for the old thing you needed to do. The energy might push the goodbye, the letting go, because we are entering a new time, and a cycle, habit, and something in the way you have lived or seen or thought you understood life is over. What was the lesson? That way has passed, and the changes are bringing us into a new reality.

Selkie Blues

Drawing courtesy of Willa Johnson The Younger.

Drawing courtesy of Willa Johnson The Younger.

Lynda Hill’s Sabian Symbols describes the Karmic Degree of the moon tonight as A Woman Has Risen Out of the Ocean, A Seal Is Embracing Her. This describes the Selkie seal/woman in Scottish folklore who lives on land but longs to return to the ocean. This image is the symbol of the energy that needs to be released tonight. Although it may be painful to change, new things will be revealed on many different levels. The seal and the human woman together reveal a connection that can never be broken, even in their separation.

Tonight the full moon at 2 degrees Aries is conjunct Chiron the Wounded Healer, opposite the sun, and Saturn squares them both. While the recent fall equinox is the beginning of a new cycle, so is the Aries space where the moon is tonight, which represents the beginning of spring. The full moon is about letting go, and what is falling away will become something new, especially if you can use the season change and the impetus of Aries’ energy to propel you forward.


Eclipse Fallout

Eclipse Fallout

For me, the grieving orca mom carrying her dead baby for 17 days (starting July 24 but basically between the lunar eclipse on July 27 and solar eclipse on August 11) is a prime example of a crisis that ‘comes out’ through the eclipses.

Lunar eclipses stimulate endings and deep feelings/the deep sea of the whales (orca means “of the realms of the dead”). The congestion, pollution, and greed of bloated capitalism that has caused these whales to lose their health and their babies must be pushed back on.

The way the other whales emotionally supported this mom and baby and allowed them to “be seen” and experience grief is not only a model of the power and value that girls, women, mothers, and the feminine can provide and that we need to learn from if we are going to keep living, but also how animals show people how to live with dignity (as Native people have known throughout this whole sordid affair...).

The mom had to go through that process, and only then was she ready to keep going. She let the baby go at the solar eclipse, which is about coming into authenticity and finding your way. But only by first going THROUGH the grief and hard times.

Drawing “See Me” by Lori Christopher.

Gurbet (Homesickness)

Last Thursday, July 12, was a new moon eclipse in Cancer, sign of nurturing and home comforts on the upside, defensive protection and contraction on the low side. The Moon is ruled by Cancer, and the Moon changes its "mood" more than any other planet, via its phases and closeness to Earth. Connectedness to deep feelings on the one hand, overblown reactivity to them on the other. It can be hard to remember "this too shall pass," especially if something feels horrible. 

Last week my husband and I were on Cape Cod driving to an early morning whale watch, breeze blowing through the windows past the bluffs and sand, and we turned up "Gurbet" by Ozdemir Erdogan, loud. The original lyrics are in Turkish, but the meaning in translation felt particularly poignant as well:

To whom should I tell my sorrow, clouds?
People who we regard as brothers hurt us deeply
And what’s more there is homesickness which hurts the most
Tell me is there news from the homeland
Or are these rains tears of my love?

I am burnt inside
My wound is so deep
Give me the news from my love, please

Clouds, say hello to my love
Say that the day of union is very close
If fate make us separate
What can I do abroad all alone
Tell me whether living far away from love is possible.

I am burnt inside
My wound is so deep
Give me the news from my love, please
— Ozdemir Erdogan, "Gurbet"

The Cancer (homeland) eclipse was in the 5th house of children and creativity, opposite Pluto in Capricorn. We have been waiting for my husband's green card and we wanted to visit his family in Turkey this summer, but have to keep waiting, as there's no guarantee the government would let him back into the US if we left without the green card. Also, this summer I barely see my daughter in July, so I feel fragile with her absence. And all of the family separations enforced by the US government at the borders of this country are a harsh example of the cruelty and coldness in power that Pluto in Capricorn opposite a sensitive Cancer moon can represent.

The first whale we encountered out at sea was known as "Diablo"; she was a 36-year-old female who had given birth to 8 children, and migrated with each one of them the summer after they were born from the Caribbean to Massachusetts. I was touched by Diablo not only for sharing a view of her amazing, strong tail as she pushed down to eat, but because that morning I had chosen the "Devil" tarot card as my subconsious feeling card. It pointed out how essential the need is to access deep sea feelings, even when uncomfortable, because they bring out creativity through our "blow hole" (breathing). And how we don't really have/can't just have one external home. It has to be internal/via connectedness.

Chiron Enters Aries

How does it hurt? How does it heal?

How does it hurt? How does it heal?

The woman in the 8 of Swords has on a blindfold and she’s tied up, but not down. She could walk away from a crappy situation, in life or in the mind.

Chiron said goodbye to Pisces and entered Aries yesterday for the first time since 1968. Now’s the time to step away from a self-narrative of victimization, and take back the power of healing yourself. This is a new energy that will play out over the next eight years as Chiron moves along its elliptical orbit between Saturn and Uranus. There will be a different flavour to both the collective energy, as well as to how/where you feel the wounding and healing in your personal astrology chart. How will that look in 2018 vs. 1969, baby?

When we feel squeezed, there’s a tendency for the mind to become small. We feel miserable, like a victim, like a pathetic, hopeless case. So believe it or not, at that moment of hassle or bewilderment or embarrassment, our minds could become bigger. Instead of taking what’s occurred as a statement of personal weakness or someone else’s power, instead of feeling we are stupid or someone else is unkind, we could drop all the complaints about ourselves and others. We could be there, feeling off guard, not knowing what to do, just hanging out there with the raw and tender energy of the moment...The next time there’s no ground to stand on, don’t consider it an obstacle. Consider it a remarkable stroke of luck. We have no ground to stand on, and at the same time it could soften us and inspire us.
— Pema Chödrön, When Things Fall Apart

No Doubt, Sauerkraut


Anyone want to spend all your money on that one and only cabbage before the store goes out of business?

This weekend's aspects might feel like life is saying, "There's just one store. Choose from our wide selection of limitations." The Moon has been opposite Saturn and Mars, and the Sun has been square Saturn and Mars, and those angles can be friction-filled moments when everything feels wrong internally and/or externally and goading you to react, often in a way that isn't in your best interests because you feel like the world is against you. Why is everything a challenge? Plus, Mercury retrograde in Aries feels like a wild horse ending up in a harness. Like the gun violence protests this weekend, one way to make it through this limitation energy is putting practical energy into building something you want to see in the world, step by step.

Although it might feel pretty sucky right now, take heed it will pass soon, and there will be so much beyond that one cabbage. 

Dorothy as the Little Engine That Could

Mantra: There's no place like home/I think I can...

Mantra: There's no place like home/I think I can...

This drink is called the Siren's Call. What is She calling you to do? The call could come in an instant, or cause waves of irritation over time that make you work to develop a pearl.

After midnight tonight, on December 18, 2017, at 1:30 AM EST to be exact, there is a new moon at 26 degrees of Sagittarius, which also happens to be the Galactic Center, as in the rotational center of the Milky Way Galaxy. This particular spot is marked by a black hole and is considered a portal of strong psychic energy, and when planets make their way over it, there can be a cleansing of energy and a shift in consciousness.

The pearl development might not come simply from the Little Engine's mental mantra "I think I can," but the uphill work required may become more of a flow and rhythm after the knock of the call and the commitment has been made. As we know, by the end of the Wizard of Oz Dorothy doesn't need to get picked up by a tornado to be transported home, but just click her heels. "There's no place like home" is whatever makes you feel at home in yourself. That could be certain activities, places, or people that make you feel grounded and connected within yourself, and give you hints on how to live and create.  

The Moon is flanked by Venus, retrograding Mercury, and Saturn, as well as a trine to Uranus, lending support to your trusting any flash of intuition facing the direction of love and commitment in your life. That may not feel easy at all with the Moon's square to Chiron, which asks you to find hope despite a possible inability to envision a future without suffering. In addition, the information that is coming to you now is especially charged, as Saturn is finishing up his 2.5-year journey in Sag and ready to head us into some heavy Capricorn karma and getting real on Tuesday. Try to finish up old things now or let them go, and whatever's coming up will be seeding new beginnings for several years. Try to direct the energy best you can, or at least be a conscious witness to it, because it will be your new work. Being in the dark will lead to the light--it is the solstice this week after all. 

Cocktail from Apotheke. Maybe a bit too Neptunian for this post. Ingredients: Ford's Gin, roasted seaweed, cucumber, squid ink, fresh ginger, black smoked sea salt rim. 

If you forgot that Mike + the Mechanics song, it's ok.



This weekend the Halloween vibes get ramped up with Scorpio’s modern ruler, Pluto, combining powers with a square to Venus and a sextile to Mercury, and joining the Sun and Jupiter in Scorpio. 

Time to shake loose ancient psychological detritus and shift perspective. You might wanna control the situation, but make use of the weekend’s Moon in Aquarius’s bird’s-eye view to just be honest, stand up for yourself and step away to avoid conflict. 

You may find yourself digging and exploring mysteries to find the truth in relationship. Here’s to integrity in communication, which can bring insights on a particular project or person this weekend.

Venus Square Saturn Handbag Analogy

...the Moon in Taurus hunkered down with the protection of a trine in fire.

...the Moon in Taurus hunkered down with the protection of a trine in fire.

This weekend there are tense vibes around relationship and money/love and how to get there. The dream balloon of love may feel like a leaking whoopie cushion. Venus and Mars have been squaring Saturn, causing discomfort and tendencies toward pissy thoughts and words about not having enough or feeling thwarted.

Today might be one of those days when your hand cream squirts all over your bag, covering everything with a greasy layer of old crumbs, crushed up leaves, and sand that's been collecting in there. You might get down in the dumps when you think about how not only do you not want to clean this garbage, but that you want a new bag altogether. But the urgency gets you to sort through and clean out all that stuff at the bottom, and before you know it, suddenly you're out of your bag and into your refrigerator, cleaning with gusto and effortlessly seeing the path forward to get your next new handbag.

Before that, it's all gonna feel crappy and personal, and Saturn square Venus hurts. At the same time though, Saturn in Sag is trining the North Node in Leo and Eris/Uranus in Aries. Today you might be in the sad bag, but these planets are a combo that can promise that if you let yourself feel the hurt that comes, and do the work you can now, you'll get the grime cleaned away for the long haul, and have clear, open windows to see and climb through.


Cat in Box

Yes, that's a caracal in a cardboard box.

Yes, that's a caracal in a cardboard box.


Today's opposition between Jupiter and Uranus can make you feel like a wild cat in a small box. All cats (house and wild) like to sit in small boxes: it can be comforting to feel contained. But today is not one of those days! The box may be feeling way too small. 

Uranus in Aries opposing Jupiter in Libra brings up questions of independence vs. interdependence. Jupiter in Libra wants to expand relationships at all costs, and butts heads with Uranus, who can equate freedom with being alone, and bust out in a blaze of glory to prove it.

What do you need to be your authentic self within partnership?

If that's a hard question to answer today, you can move through it by taking some deep breaths, dancing to some choice rhythms, taking a brisk walk, or having a good, wet cry to release the anger/fire.

And hell, Pluto is stationing to go direct today, making things all the more intense! People are pissed and looking like Halloween characters. Energy is stopped and sluggish today, but soon Pluto's movement forward will gain momentum, so think about how to best channel power toward your goals.