Summer Begins with a Full Strawberry Moon

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It is the first week of Summer with a Full Moon headed our way.  Though the Sun is at it’s height, it is the sign of the Moon that welcomes Summer; Cancer, the mysterious realm of inner life. 

Just as the Moon can expand and contract, so can inner life.  Expanding to meet something of significance, and contracting when bored.  

Full Moons have a way of jump-starting this feeling of expansion.  They catch your eye on a normal night and make you say- ooh, look at that!

A Full Moon in the Season of the Moon always falls in the sign of Capricorn, which represents reality.  If it is true what philosopher Gaston Bachelard said, that we are all born poets, then reality would find us better when our inner life is expanded, and things are taken less for granted.  The poet always is saying- ohh look at that! Just as a child does.  

More kids are around too as Summer has begun.  They will help us remember this great gift of expansion.

Mercury in Gemini moves direct on Tuesday after being retrograde for about 3 weeks.  Something heady likely has been untangled a bit and now it’s time to stride forward with a bit more knowledge.

Venus in her last week of Cancer, finding beauty in things that anchor you in a place of home.  Trining Neptune, don’t forget to enlarge your reality of home to a comfortable cosmic coziness.

Mars in the early degrees of Leo and approaching an opposition to Saturn.  There is a stirring up of sunshine, that is a stirring up of pure being that will help answer all of these serious existential questions that linger with Saturn in Aquarius.  What stirs up your pure being?  What puts you in touch with your own sunshine?  

Squaring both of those planets is Uranus in Taurus, a slow and steady reawakening of something substantial.  Something certain.  Something to count on.  Something to build on.  What is this for you?

Jupiter in Pisces just went retrograde on Sunday the 20th.  This week the planet of faith pivots and turns back in the early waters of dreams.  It found something here, something to put faith in, and is now turning back to secure it.  Even if you don’t know what this is it doesn’t matter.  Pisces is vague, but strong with emotional power.  Maybe it is a feeling that’s been found.  Whatever it is, it’s special, and worthy of spirited protection.

The Moon will begin the week waxing gibbous in Scorpio, the sign of the profound.  During moon season this is the ability of the shell to amplify it’s ambient sound, and heighten feelings to a richer intensity.  Not your ordinary Monday!

Tuesday and Wednesday host a very big Sagittarius Moon, and this sign loves bigness.  Go big or go home, but in the Season of the Moon the two need not cancel each other out!  The galaxy within is of an adequate immensity.

Thursday is our glorious Full Strawberry Moon, as the Algonquins named it, to signify the relatively short season for harvesting strawberries in the northeastern U.S.  It also often appears reddish, as it shines through more atmosphere now than other times of the year.  

As mentioned before, this Capricorn Full Moon represents the reality that comes forth with an expanded inner life.  The Beatles sing about Strawberry fields where nothing is real, but there is something very real in this non reality.  John Lennon’s childhood had some tragedy, most of all the death of his mother by a speeding car when he was only 17.  Strawberry Field was a girls orphanage with a foreboding feel to it on the outside.  But the young Lennon would climb the wall to find that on the inside it was full of wildflowers and secretive gardens.   Through the poetic expanse of this reality came one of the best songs ever recorded.  This is how an expanded inner life makes reality more real.  If nothing else on this night, give that song a listen, maybe with a ripe box of strawberries!

The day after the Full Moon, Neptune will go retrograde for 5 months!  Dreams and ideals will be retracing their proverbial swim tracks until the beginning of December, in search of targets that are realer than real.

An Aquarius Moon begins to wane gibbous throughout the weekend.  Aquarius is the water bearer, in other words, one who is aware of having an inner life.  Aquarius is evolution, a process that strives and grows through striving.  Cast a wide net this weekend-see what significance your inner life wants to explore.  Summer is here with quantum fireflies galore!

As always, happy astro pondering!

Astro art by Johnnie Day Durand

https://www.happyastropondering.com/

Mars in Cancer: The Will to Home

To associate Mars with hotheadedness, anger, combat, etc. is really to sell short the psychic usefulness of the red planet.

At it’s most crucial level, Mars is the Will.  Everyone possesses this, and some are far more in touch with it than others.  It’s only when one’s Will is being thwarted or ignored that hotheadedness, anger and all of these pressure-cooker emotions bubble up.  Let’s try to go to the root of things rather than obsessing over symptoms, shall we?

What is the Will?

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Other words for the Will include striving, urging, wanting, desire, effort, you get the idea!

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Arthur Schopenhauer’s Philosophy of Will sees Will as a slave to the world of ideas, therefore we are not free, and life is a sorry affair.

Schopenhauer saw the Will as an omnipresent force, not particular to the individual, but controlling us all, and so he was quite the pessimist.

The only thing that could kind of help us in this sorry world, was in experiencing something beautiful like art.  In the midst of a great painting or an exquisite piece of music, the Will was transformed into ‘representation of the Will’ – the better the art, the better the representation- and in that moment, the person ceases to even exist!

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Ah!  At last I am nothing and no longer a slave to the Will!  Courtesy of Van Gogh’s Cafe Terrace at Night.

Another famous thinker who gave considerable amount of attention to the Will (and was incredibly influenced by Schopenhauer) was Frederich Nietzsche.  But Nietzsche ended up being a total optimist about it!

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Nietzsche claimed that “The world itself is the will to power and nothing else!  And you yourself are the will to power- and nothing else!”

But where Schopenhauer used the Will as an ultimate negation of life, Nietzsche used it as an ultimate affirming of life.  He proclaimed himself a yea-sayer- and likened this Will to seeing life as positive as similar to that of  the ecstasy-loving Dionysus.

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Dionysus- the original “Life is Good” sayer.

So let’s just be happy to be clear on the notion that Mars as the Will is a powerful force that has been pondered for centuries.  It is no small thing.  It might be everything.  So what is it up to now in the sign of Cancer?

Cancer is the sign of home and family but, as the first of the Water signs, it begs us to feel this truth, not just to think about it.

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This is Chip (or Dale) inside of a Christmas tree from the Disney 1952 Classic “Pluto’s Christmas”.

I remember seeing this cartoon as a kid and being utterly enchanted by the sheer twinkling magic and coziness of these two chipmunks wandering around on the actual inside of a Christmas tree.

It’s not enough to convey the feelings of Cancer by referring to Christmas alone because you may not even celebrate it, or it may bring up family strife instead of warmth and sparkle.

But the inside of a Christmas tree, with your good pal Dale, now that is magical coziness.  That is a recipe to feel great.

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The Will to Home is an urging towards a place of magical coziness.  Magical in that it is dynamic, not stagnant.  Cozy in that it offers total restoration to the spirit.  The destination may still be unknown to you, but you can follow the clues of what it is by tuning in to your true feelings.

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Cancer is the stillness of the North Star.  The sureness of that great feeling.

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Mars is the Will to get there.

Until next time, Happy Astro Pondering!

-Tess

The Crying Game. Water planets and comfortability in expressing emotion.

I was thinking about scenes in movies when I didn’t quite feel the emotion that was being portrayed.  The big one that came to mind was the ending of “Seven” when Brad Pitt is in the cornfield asking Kevin Spacey “what’s in the box??” knowing full well that it is Gwyneth Paltrow’s severed head.

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A bit of a misfire of relatable emotions (IMO)

Believe me, I am not knocking Brad Pitt.  I think he is a tour de force of an actor.  But this scene got me thinking about how some actors seem very natural and easy with expressing vulnerable emotions while others maybe not as much.

Brad Pitt’s chart shows no Water planets (except Neptune).  He is runs mostly on Earth and Fire.  My latest favorite movie with him was “World War Z”, and you better believe he was (in my opinion) EXTREMELY effective at displaying a courageous (Fire) hero who gets the job done (Earth).

I also think Brad Pitt is very effective conveying deep emotions BUT, usually this is done by an UNDERSTATED approach.  A subtle look, or a quick tear up, but NOT a prolonged cry-fest.  A prolonged cry-fest is hard to make look authentic, UNLESS you have some Water planets to help you out.

Everyone has emotions, just like everyone has a Moon their natal chart.  Water planets don’t give people more emotion but they DO (ideally) make EXPRESSING emotion a bit more comfortable and natural.  This is especially true with Scorpio, because Scorpio is all about emotional power and control.

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James Dean let’s the feelings fly with Mars squaring his Scorpio Moon. He is completely comfortable in showing vulnerability which works to set him in a league of his own and pave the way for future actors.

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Leonardo Di Caprio’s 2nd house Scorpio Sun and Scorpio Mars allows him to rely on his resources (2nd house) of emotional power and control (Scorpio). His life energy and driving force (Sun and Mars) dedicated to harnessing this emotional strength.

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Matthew McConaughey has both his Sun and Mercury in Scorpio. Not only does he emote with wild abandon when needed, he also has the habit of taking up character role that talk (Mercury) about the endless mysterious of life (Scorpio)

Compare these Scorpio cry-looks to some Cancer cry-looks.

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Tom Hanks’ Cancer Moon makes us want to hug him and tell him everything will be alright. Cancer emotions being expressed can bring out the “awww” in most of us.

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Even Tom Cruise, with all of his macho roles is a bit of a Teddy Bear when sad thanks to his Cancer Sun.

And finally some Pisces…

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Bruce Willis captures the perfect “Savior-Martyr” emotional look with his thoughtful teary expressions. Sun and Mercury in Pisces.

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On the other end of the Pisces emotional spectrum is that of the “victim” which Jon Hamm displays here (Sun and Mercury in Pisces)

Actors who do not have Water planets, when faced with a role that needs to display emotion will often naturally take a SUBDUED approach.

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George Clooney has no Water planets (except Neptune) but he gets the emotion across with stillness (Taurus Sun) and a perceived stoic groundedness (double Earth).

Or restort to other methods…

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No-Water planeted Al Pacino expresses anger with ease thanks to the Fire in his chart. When it comes to expressing vulnerability a tactic like covering the face can help the awkward process.

Taylor Swift’s romantic Jupiter-Mercury opposition

What does it mean when you identify yourself (Ascendant) with your words (Mercury)?  Let’s ask Taylor Swift!  She is famous for writing songs about the highs and lows of her own personal experiences in the dating arena.  She achieved such a strong reputation for this that she actually swore off dating for a whole year, favoring more time with her girlfriends.

Taylor has Mercury in Capricorn, the sign of ambition and making a mark in the world.  Unlike other singers her age, she has the patience and discipline (Capricorn) that is needed to be a successful songwriter.  And identifying so personally (Ascendant) with her songs is also unique.

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There is more to the story with the Mercury however!  Most of her material comes from life experiences in dating, and it comes as no surprise that Jupiter is conjunct the Descendant (relationships) and exactly opposite this ambitious Mercury.  Jupiter gives us that feeling of enthusiasm and faith in life.  Her Jupiter is in Cancer, so her faith is instilled in situations that give her emotional security.  Being on the Descendant, these situations mainly play out in her close relationships.  Sweetness with someone one day, and then boom!  A breakup and in comes the tidal wave of emotional inspiration!

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Rumored to have written “The Last Time” about ex Jake Gyllenhaal

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She unambiguously wrote the song “Dear John” after a bitter breakup with John Mayer

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About Harry Styles she is said to have written “I Knew You Were Trouble” and “Red”

As a Sagittarius, inspiration is the primary fuel that she runs on, so this Jupiter is further elevated.  And on the opposite end, Mercury is surrounded by Neptune, Saturn and Uranus.  Uranus intensifying her drive to work hard (Saturn) and incorporate her imagination (Neptune) in her writing pursuits.

Her Moon is in Cancer as well (conjunct that powerful Jupiter), which really drives home that need for emotional “rightness”.  She is famous for having a lot of friends, one of which is writer, Lena Dunham, a very mercurial girl!  There it is again:  faith from emotional bonding solidifying an identity as a words girl, with another words girl!

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Swift with BFF Lena Dunham

Taylor grew up on a Christmas tree farm.  I love that detail with her Sun Moon combo:  Sagittarius exuberant spirit serving a sweetness-craving Cancer Moon.  Can we not practically see a lit up Christmas tree take form?

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Here comes the Sun: Knowing your life energy. Part 2- Water

Your Sun sign keys you into understanding the fundamental energy that you run on.  There are four basic different categories of this energy: Earth, Water, Air and Fire.  Start with understanding your element and then move on to understand it’s specific qualities within your sign.

Today we are looking at Water energy.

Water energy is emotional and feeling oriented.  This energy is tuned into subtleties like no other.  Water runs the deepest of the four- it is the most inward.  It needs privacy at times to refuel.  Like Earth, it is Yin therefore it is geared more towards receiving than projecting outward.  Water reminds us how much takes place below the surface.

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Water energy runs deep, bringing in elements of the subconscious.

Breaking Water down further into the Modes we get:

Cardinal Water: Cancer.  Cardinal energy INITIATES.  Think about this inward emotional energy and add that concept of initiation and that can bring us naturally to family and early home- where most of our emotional energy was INITIATED.  Cancer energy yearns to attain emotional security.

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Double Cancer, Henry David Thoreau built a home on Emerson’s land where he stayed and wrote “Walden Pond”. He spent his days tuning into a quieter and more simple way of life to better understand society and human development.

Fixed Water: Scorpio.  Fixed energy MAINTAINS.  Now this inward feeling oriented energy is being maintained and we can be brought to the idea sacred emotional unions.  “I like this feeling- I want to keep it.  I want to STAY here and explore”.

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Georgia O’Keefe has Scorpio stellium (cluster of planets) including her Sun and Moon, all on the Ascendant. Her identity (ASC) is very much consumed with deep emotional power, often integrating symbols of death into vivid color schemes. This stellium is opposed by Pluto and Neptune adding a profound (Pluto) transcendental tone (Neptune).

Mutable Water: Pisces.  Mutable energy ADAPTS, CHANGES, and REFINES.  The subtle feeling energy now is ready to adjust and improve hence we are brought to such concepts as compassion and forgiveness.  The sensitivity is refined and reaching always to attain new heights.

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Alexander McQueen has his Sun and Moon in Pisces in the self expressive 5th house. His fashion designs reflect Pisces’ ever evolving rich imagination in search of the sublimely beautiful. His Sun is opposite Pluto bringing in that sense of the profound.

Next post we will explore exciting energy of fire!