The New Moon is on Wednesday, November 23 at 4:57 pm CST in 1° Sagittarius. This New Moon is adventurous and playful and its warmth in a fire sign makes it good for the social side of Thanksgiving. Also on Wednesday, Jupiter is at its station direct at 28° Pisces. Jupiter is relatively close to Neptune at 22° Pisces. This combination is beneficial for the start of the holiday season. Jupiter symbolizes generosity of spirit and an appreciation of the religious and philosophical aspects of all the winter holidays. Neptune at its best is attunement to the Divine.
The expansive quality of Jupiter combined with the idealism of Neptune can trip us up when we try to achieve perfection in producing the perfect holiday experience for ourselves or others. As my guru advised us many times, "We are not living in the realm of perfection." You may find, as I often do at a multi-course holiday meal, that I forgot to serve a dish I'd planned -- and found it the next day in the oven or fridge. Yikes! But no one noticed and everyone had plenty.
Gratitude is a powerful spiritual path. A Kriya friend of mine recently shared this reflection before meals from Vietnamese Zen Buddhist monk Thich Nhat Hanh:
“In this food I see clearly the presence of the entire universe supporting my existence.”
Just in one piece of bread, we can be grateful for the sun, rain, earth and the farmer that grows the grain. The people who manufactured the machines that harvested it. The mill that grinds the flour. The transport to the bakery. And so on for every bite of food, and everything else in the miracle of this life that sustains us.
There will be a Lunar Eclipse on Tuesday November 8 at 5:02 a.m. in 16° Taurus. This Lunar Eclipse is conjunct Uranus which signifies sudden and unexpected changes. In Taurus, these changes are likely to occur in the areas of real estate and banking. Keep a close eye on your personal finances. You might find yourself with a restless urge to spend, especially on electronics or new inventions.
Being flexible mentally can help you to be open to the new ideas and sparks of genius that Uranus aspects bring. As usual, it's best to wait a week after the eclipse to process new information before taking action.
The Lunar Eclipse and Uranus are squared to Saturn. We've been dealing with the Saturn/Uranus square for the past two years so it's nothing new. The eclipse just intensifies it for a few days both on an internal and external level.
Here are a few thoughts to consider:
Saturn is limitation, constriction, and sometimes obstruction. Uranus is the urge for freedom, sometimes rebellion. Watch your own emotionality each time you see these symbols in the news and in your own life.
Are we resisting something new or rebelling against a longstanding pattern? Are we playing the role of the parent? Are we the rebellious child? Are we being too extreme in our plans or too conservative in our decision making? How do we approach the future? Saturn resists the future. Uranus loves the future.
Can these planetary forces work together? Seek balance between discipline (Saturn) and freedom (Uranus). Appreciate things from the past while finding gratitude for the new. Most importantly, learn from your life experiences. This square is starting to separate so in a week you will begin to feel more relaxed and less at odds with others.
The New Moon/Solar Eclipse is this Tuesday, October 25 at 5:48 a.m. CDT in 2° Scorpio. As a new moon is a new beginning for the next four weeks, a solar eclipse is a new beginning for the next twelve months. Create a positive intention for the year ahead that aligns with your passions. Visualize it and or write it down. Then wait to take action because a solar eclipse amplifies other planetary events that occur during that week …
There are two important positions during the days before and after the eclipse which create a type of 'turbulent astro-weather'. The first is Saturn going direct at 18° Aquarius on Sunday, October 23. Saturn rules time and when Saturn is at a stationary point, everything slows down. Sometimes it can be observed in snarled traffic patterns and this can be used as a metaphor for other similar situations. Saturn is also that feeling of carrying around a heavy weight, emotionally, physically, or both. Not good for new beginnings. Things started at this time take more effort and take longer to complete.
The second position is Mars going retrograde on October 30th at 25° Gemini. Mars retrograde also slows things down. It feels like a car revving its engine but spinning its wheels. Combined with the Saturn, there's a lot of frustration possible. Again, not auspicious for new beginnings as projects started now are likely to go backwards before they go forward.
Therefore, wait at least a week into November to act on your eclipse intention. You will then have the information to use for a realistic estimate on the time and work to pursue your goal. Some of the initial perceived obstacles may diminish by then and friction with others will de-escalate.
Important note: These stationary points guidelines don't mean "don't do anything". Carry on with your current life responsibilities. Focus on your highest priorities. Find joy in your everyday life.
Here's my talk from last Sunday, that includes a guided meditation for finding and intensifying the joy in your everyday life:
The Full Moon is on Sunday, October 9 at 3:54 p.m. CDT in 16° Aries. It is combined with the Pluto stationary point on October 8 at 26° Capricorn. Very high energy levels and lots of motivation to implement both simple changes and life transformations. I think the most important thing in terms of harmonious living is to only use that energy for self-improvement. If you try to motivate others, you may find yourself "crossing swords" with individuals who have their own unique agendas.
The Moon is conjunct the asteroid Chiron, the symbol of the wounded healer. One of the best ways to persuade others to change is to speak out of your own experience. Tell them what helped you when you were in a similar difficult situation, rather than just trying to tell them what they should do.
Doing physical movement like running or dancing to let off steam can be helpful at this full moon. Just remember to move easily breakable things out of the way first.
"The Joy of Kriya" Sunday Noon Meditation for the Temple of Kriya Yoga
October 9, 2022 with Marcia Sacks, Swami K. Adinadananda.
Even in challenging times, we can discover delight and contentment. This talk will include a guided meditation to explore and expand the joy in our lives.
(Note to astrologers, you might enjoy the guided meditation. It will be about finding joy in all areas of your life, using the houses of the horoscope as a template.)
The meditation will be posted here at noon on Sunday: https://www.yogakriya.org/
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The New Moon is on Sunday, September 25 at 4:54 p.m. in 2° Libra. Libra is a sign of partnerships, so starting a new project in partnership is favored. Libra, symbolized by the scales, is about balance.
"It's not how you predict the future; it's how you balance the future." Goswami Kriyananda
How do we balance our future using the information in the New Moon chart? The first thing is the understanding that balance comes from re-balancing. Re-balancing is a process of realizing we're off-balance and pulling back toward whatever balance means to you. In yoga, we're usually talking about peace and equanimity. So, when we find ourselves off-balance emotionally in some way, we use a technique like deep breathing or meditation to bring us back.
If Libra is a sign of partnerships, we balance the next several days by paying attention to the partnerships in our life: marriage, work projects etc. Since Libra is an air sign and air signs mean communication, then we pay attention to all communications and use the Libra faculty for tact and diplomacy. Balance, un-balance, re-balance.
And then as Mercury makes its stationary point on October 2 at 24° Virgo, we double up on tact and diplomacy, letting go of giving critiques to others for a few days.
Because the Saturn/Uranus square is still in orb in the New Moon chart, we contemplate ways to harmoniously balance caution with creativity. The old versus the new. Tradition in contrast to modern culture.
With Mars trining Saturn in the New Moon chart we can use consistent and focused energy to get our New Moon projects geared up.
You can turn all the above into affirmations if you like:
I move through the day with an abundance of balanced and constructive energy.
The Most Important Thing
Ray Grasse often posts excerpts from his books on Facebook. Recently he posted this conversation with Goswami Kriyananda via Ray's book Urban Mystic …
RAY: What is the most important thing a person should know?
KRIYANANDA: That they can find answers for themselves, that they don’t need teachers, gurus, priests, rabbis. As my guru said to me, “No one should have greater interest in me than me,” No one would have greater interest in you than you. And so that you— whoever that you is—should pick up the search. So I think the answer is, we can find the answers. Life is knowable.
More of this conversation here:
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The Full Moon is on Saturday, September 10, 2022 at 4:58 a.m. CDT in 17° Pisces. This full moon heightens our sensitivity. Sometimes it's an empathic, compassionate response to the plight of others. Sometimes it's an awareness of the vastness of the ocean or the universe, giving us greater perspective. It can also make us a bit too easily hurt when we feel we are being critiqued. Remembering to send some compassion and lovingkindness to ourselves (the critiqued) and the other (the critic) can be healing.
Mercury goes retrograde on Friday, September 9 at 8° Libra. As many of you know, Mercury retrograde can begin to be felt in the days approaching the aspect. Yesterday, I was bringing my computer back from the repair shop. It was a good feeling. I got it set up on my desk. Plugged in the monitor, the keyboard, the mouse. Turned it on. The monitor didn't come on. I could see the fan whirling, the lights were on, the computer was working. But no video. I started to freak out. I called the repair person. He kindly walked me through the steps I had done setting it up. I insisted that I'd plugged the HDMI cord in.
"Where?" he asked.
I carefully and calmly (I mean, with controlled hysteria) told him that I'd put it in the obvious HDMI plug-in on the back of the computer: "It's the top port on the back."
"On your computer, the HDMI plugs into the video card. It's lower down," he said. I had to get out my mini-flashlight and my reading glasses to find the right port. The monitor came on. "It works!" I was so grateful and relieved. And so embarrassed that I hadn't remembered where the monitor cable went, even though I'm sure I'd hooked up the computer before.
This is a true story and a Mercury retrograde metaphor at the same time. During Mercury retro, remember to take some time to think before reacting. You don't have to have all the answers. Ask an expert for help. Mentally, take out a flashlight and shed some light on the issue. Symbolically, take out your reading glasses and check the fine print. Be polite, not reactive, in conversation and written communication.
Goswami Kriyananda said that these are magic words, "Who, what, when, where, why and how." They can be used in times of contemplation on a topic or self-reflection i.e. "Who am I?" "What is my life all about?" "Why am I here?"
The three weeks of Mercury retrograde are a natural time of in-turning. Therefore, good for reflection. Also good for researching information for projects that will start after Mercury goes direct (October 2nd).
I was fortunate to attend the ISAR 2022 conference in Colorado last month. I met Jenn Zahrt who is not only the editor of The Mountain Astrologer but has recently founded The Celestial Arts Education Library (CAELI). It is located near Olympia, WA. This is an actual physical space, home to a large collection of astrology books and magazines. Check out the video:
The New Moon is on Saturday, August 27 at 3:16 a.m. CDT in 4° Virgo. It's a good time for getting organized and paying attention to the small details of life. Sharpen your pencils (symbolically or actually) in order to write lists or study something new. The mythological Virgo is the goddess of the harvest. Take a look at what you planted in the first part of the year, i.e. where you put your life energy, and what is ready to be reaped now.
"The day of fortune is like a harvest day, We must be busy when the corn is ripe." Torquato Tasso
With Mars in 4° Gemini in a square to the Moon and Sun there is a tendency to be just a bit too critical and picky. There's a difference between good judgment and being judgmental.
Whenever I'm thinking about what to write at the new or full moons, I pay attention when slips of paper fall out of a stacked pile or a notebook. This time it was a quote from Goswami Kriyananda: "Seek out your own illumination with great diligence!" This is something he often said to his disciples and students. Sometimes he said "Seek out your own illumination with greater and greater diligence!" Whatever your spiritual practice, intensify and nourish it at this new moon.
With the New Moon in an earth sign, try Tadasana, the Mountain Pose to feel grounded. Here's a recent article by Naomi Greene, a yoga teacher and swami of the Temple of Kriya Yoga: https://www.naturaltucson.com/2022/07/31/407330/tadasana-standing-on-your-own-two-feet
Coming up: Mercury Retrograde September 9 at 8° Libra. Pay attention to verbal and written communications, especially contracts involving partnerships.
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The Full Moon is on Thursday, August 11 at 8:35 p.m. in 19° Aquarius. The Moon is conjunct Saturn at 22° Aquarius. This can bring us into social situations where the conversations are more serious or deep. To keep things balanced try to focus more on facts than opinions. What Saturn wants from a situation is respect. Even in disagreement, try to be as respectful and considerate as possible.
Saturn often symbolizes the immoveable object or an insurmountable limitation. But even a limiting force like gravity can be overcome temporarily by an airplane. Aquarius is an air sign and ruled by Uranus. Uranus is the spark of genius, inventions of the human mind. When we lift our minds from the personal to see life from a greater horizon of awareness, what was once limiting is now a steppingstone to our goal.
If you like using Sanskrit mantra, a Ganesh one can be helpful. Ganesh represents the aspect of God as 'overcomer of obstacles.' Try this version by Deva Premal:
At this Full Moon, the Moon, Sun and Saturn are also square to Uranus at 18° Taurus. Because Uranus makes its station retrograde on August 24 at the same position, 18° Taurus, this pattern will persist a bit longer than the usual effect of a Full Moon.
I wrote this about the Saturn Uranus square in an article for Yoga Chicago Magazine in 2021:
"Saturn is tradition. Uranus is rebellion. These forces seem like they should always be opposed to each other, but they can work together if you see Saturn as foundation and Uranus as creativity. Most arts have a foundation of skill or mastery of the basics and yet the true artist is often the one that brings that spark of genius to their work.
We can use these scenarios to recognize Saturn and Uranus patterns in our own minds as we go through [ the next two weeks]. Are we resisting something new or rebelling against a longstanding pattern? Are we playing the role of the parent? Are we the rebellious child? Are we being too extreme in our plans or too conservative in our decision making? How do we approach the future? Saturn resists the future. Uranus loves the future.
To have compassion for yourself and others, try to see both sides of these polarities. Reflect on what a small step toward a middle ground would look like. Sometimes we believe we are required to judge others when no one asked us to. Peace comes to us when we expand our acceptance of others exactly as they are."
The New Moon is tomorrow, Thursday, July 28th at 12:54 pm in 5° Leo. Energy and vitality will give us a boost for our personal and creative projects. We'll enjoy social events, and be drawn toward fun and entertainment.
Leo has a symbolic correspondence to the Strength card in the Tarot. One meaning of this card is using skillful means, a loving spirit, or just persistence and determination to calm down unhealthy passions and desires.
This is an image of the Strength card from the Rider-Waite deck with the illustration by Pamela Colman Smith:
Jupiter is at a stationary point at 8° Aries in trine - harmonious - to the Sun and Moon. This brings a dimension of finding pleasure in study, deep dives into philosophy or scripture. Depending on your nature it could be the beginning of travel or adventure.
ISAR Conference, August 25 - 29 in Denver, CO
The Full Moon is on Wednesday, July 13 at 1:37 pm in 21° Capricorn. A full moon is always a polarity with the Moon on one side of the zodiac and the Sun in the opposite degree. In this case, the Moon in Capricorn represents practical concerns that may limit the Moon's emotional expression. So, we might need to focus on our immediate responsibilities for a few days. We may experience others as cold and unfeeling. It can be helpful to remember those people could have stressful home and family obligations that are unknown to us. The Sun in Cancer opposite the Moon also indicates a focus on home and family at this time.
How can we find balance during an opposition? We look for the 'helper' planets, the ones that have a harmonious aspect to both opposing planets. In the case of this Full Moon, Uranus in Taurus is sextile to the Sun and trine to the Moon. Also, Neptune in Pisces is trine to the Sun and sextile to the Moon.
Uranus suggests being open to new ideas when you're doing problem solving. There could be a new electronic product or online service that could be beneficial. Because Uranus rules astrology, try taking a deeper look at your own natal horoscope for clues to current issues.
Neptune brings us back to using skillful spiritual means to harmonize a challenging situation. Yoga, meditation, prayer, mantra, and chanting, for example, can lower our tendency to instantly react to circumstances. Neptune also rules artistic expression, indicating a good time to either create art or appreciate it. Walking by water in nature can help - or simply taking a bath or shower which cleanses your aura as well as your body.
If you want to transcend our local solar system's astrology take a look at the first images from the James Webb Space Telescope that were just released. They are mind-blowing! (I am illustrating today's Astrology Update with one of them.) We are looking at a tiny segment of space "so distant in the cosmos that it shows stars and galaxies as they appeared 13 billion years ago".
The reveal from the JWST around this New Moon is great symbolism for being able to see farther with a clearer perspective. Here's a link to see the difference between the previous images from the Hubble with the new clarity from JWST.
Marcia Sacks is an astrologer in the Kriya Yoga tradition.