Reclaiming the Power of Love – Friday’s Full Moon in Leo, Square Saturn

leo full moon

painting by Susan Seddon Boulet

The Full Moon in Leo – the sign of love, romance and celebration – lights up Valentine’s Day this year (Friday, 3:53 pm Pacific). Leo rules the heart, and this Full Moon reconnects you with your heart’s true desires, creative passion and inner light. At best, the Leo Full Moon inspires your generosity, nobility and courage when it comes to giving and receiving love, and trusting your heart’s guidance.

Although Leo is all about fun and festivity, this Full Moon squares Saturn, potentially stirring up a more somber tone and deep emotional currents. Saturn in Scorpio specifically highlights blocks, fears and challenges around emotional intimacy and sexuality, as well as revealing wounds related to abandonment, betrayal and abuse. Saturn’s square to the Full Moon is likely to reveal the areas where you DON’T feel happy, creative or festive and you’re not having fun. Where is your heart closed-off and defended?

Scorpio is the sign that lives in the Underworld and Saturn in Scorpio loves to reveal the shadow or dark side of whatever it touches. One shadowy expression of Leo is seeking approval, love, validation and applause from others. This is Leo identified with the ego instead of the heart. Saturn’s square to the Leo Moon asks: Are you giving others the power to define your lovability? Where do you give away your authority when it comes to love, creativity, and pursuing your heart’s desires?

At last year’s Leo Full Moon, which also squared Saturn, I wrote:

saturnThe Leo Full Moon evokes our inner child, while the square to Saturn – planet of maturity, responsibility and commitment – asks, What steps can you take to help your inner child grow up, and can you do so with love, acceptance and patience rather than harshness, judgment and self-punishment (shadow Saturn)? (Creativity, Courage and Commitment)

Ultimately, Saturn is about mastery – showing you the work that needs to be done so you can step into more of your authority and power. At this Full Moon, Saturn reveals the old emotional shiznit that wants to be released, healed, transformed so you can open your heart and feel more loving, happy and confident, so you can stand more fully in the authority of your heart’s wisdom.

Retrograde Mercury opposes the Full Moon, bringing the past into focus – the times you felt unloved, unseen and unappreciated, and the old fear-based patterns that block the flow of love. Marianne Williamson’s wise words have been in my email signature for the past month, and are a helpful reminder for this Full Moon: “We are not held back by the love we didn’t receive in the past, but by the love we’re not extending in the present.

full moonTo get more insight into what this Full Moon means for YOU, find the house in your birth chart that contains 26 degrees Leo. The areas of life signified by that house are where you’re being called to: feel into your heart’s authentic desires; courageously commit to your creativity and passion; heal childhood wounds and fears around letting your light shine; and deepen into, open up to, and radiate more LOVE.

- Emily Trinkaus

Calling all priestesses! Energy-healing genius Katie Todd and I will be working with these powerful Full Moon energies on Friday in our virtual galactic temple. All women are welcome, and this is a teleclass, so you just need a phone to participate. Register by midnight tonight (Tuesday) to be eligible to win a personalized session on the call! Details here.

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Hold Your Horses – Mercury Stations Retrograde

Hermes/Mercury Messenger God, taking a pause

Hermes/Mercury Messenger God, pausing to reflect

I know, I know, it’s the Year of the Horse and we’re all supposed to be galloping ahead into our exciting new lives. However. The planets have a different story to tell, one that suggests the Horse might not be entirely ready to get up to speed until this summer.

We’ve just emerged from Venus Retrograde, ideally with more clarity about our bottom-line needs and priorities. Now, Mercury is about to turn Retrograde on Thursday, until February 28, a time to slow down, complete unfinished business, and rethink where you’re headed.

Mercury Retro is always a time when intuition is more powerful than logic, but that’s extra-true for this one. Mercury is in Pisces, closely conjunct Neptune, God/Goddess of the Ocean, modern ruler of the Fish. A Neptunian/Piscean Retrograde Mercury works best when you drop into a level of information beneath the rational mind, trust your feelings, and pay attention to subtle clues from your dreams and fantasies. (This would be a good time to keep a dream journal.)

piscesAlthough Mercury Retro begins in Pisces (3 degrees), the Messenger returns to Aquarius on February 12, where it will remain for the rest of the Retrograde. Aquarius and Pisces are the last two signs of the zodiac, both gifted with seeing the bigger picture and higher perspective.

This Retrograde wants you to re-imagine your dream for the future; reconnect with the psychic, mystical, magical, all-knowing part of yourself; replenish your well of inspiration; and regenerate your faith in humanity. This is a time for dissolving old perceptions and perspectives, freeing your mind from illusions that block you from living your truth, from bringing forth your genius and sharing your gifts with the world.

The basic guidelines for Mercury Retro:  take your time with important communications; don’t be afraid to repeat yourself or ask for clarification; leave extra time getting to appointments; double-check the details; and avoid signing contracts and buying electronics (cars, computers, etc.). If you need to break the Mercury-Retro rules, best to wait until after February 15, the midpoint of the Retrograde cycle.

With some astro-technical know-how, you can get more insight into what this Mercury Retro means for YOU by finding the house or houses in your chart that contain 18 degrees Aquarius to 3 degrees Pisces. The areas of life signified by that house (or houses) are where you’re invited to: revisit the past; restore your faith; reconsider your dreams; get a higher perspective; and reconnect with your radical genius, creativity and individuality. (You can find information about the houses here.)

marsMercury turns Direct (forward) on February 28, and the very next day Mars – planet of action, passion and desire – will turn Retrograde, until May 20. Mars Retrograde is the masculine principle on a vision quest, a time to slow down and turn inward, regenerate your vitality, and reconsider what you really want and what you feel passionate about.

I really like how Caroline Casey describes Retrograde planets, with the image of pulling back an arrow in a bow. It may feel like you’re moving backwards and it might look like nothing’s happening, but you’re actually generating momentum, behind the scenes, for your Horse’s future gallop.

- Emily Trinkaus

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A Spark Lit in the Dark – Today’s New Moon in Aquarius

aquariusToday’s New Moon in Aquarius (1:39 pm Pacific) invites you to get a higher perspective on your life, plant a seed for your future vision, and liberate your unique creative genius. This infusion of Aquarian energy – objective, innovative, visionary, future-oriented – arrives in the midst of deep darkness.

We’ve been in an uber-Plutonian period of meeting our shadows, feeling and releasing grief, rage, and other painful emotions, shedding the layers of family and social conditioning, and confronting the past, including coming to terms with the results of past actions.

In addition to Venus conjoining with Pluto as she stations (see my previous post), Venus and Pluto both oppose Jupiter in watery, sensitive, security-seeking Cancer. Exact on Friday, the Jupiter-Pluto opposition wants to reveal and heal our earliest conditioned responses that block us from being receptive to opportunities in the present, and from being able to envision and create a more positive future. Owning our projections and taking responsibility for our inner world have been strong themes.

The Aquarius New Moon marks the Chinese New Year, when we enter the year of the Wood Horse. I don’t pretend to know much about Chinese astrology, but what’s been happening according to Western astrology – Pluto, Pluto and more Pluto – seems to resonate with the closing out of the year of the Water Snake. The Snake is associated with both Pluto, the principle of regeneration, the shedding of the old to allow for new growth, and also, since ancient times, with Venus, the Goddess.

snake goddessIn the Venusian sense, the Snake signifies kundalini energy, which sits coiled in the base of the spine, then rises up through the chakras, infusing the body with spiritual wisdom and empowerment. Venusian priestesses used sex magic to work with this energy as a force of healing.

As we navigate the transition from Snake to Horse, we can reflect on what we’ve released, as well as the inner wisdom and empowerment we’ve gained, over the past year. For more insight into what this New Moon means for YOU, find the house in your birth chart that contains 11 degrees Aquarius. The areas of life signified by that house are where you’re invited to:  look for and lean into the big-picture perspective; activate your radical individuality and creativity; tune into and trust your inner truth; and set intentions for experiencing more freedom, clarity, community and friendship. The most powerful times for making New Moon wishes are between 1:38 pm today and 8:45 am tomorrow (Pacific time).

- Emily Trinkaus

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Honoring the Dark Goddess – Venus Stations Direct, Conjunct Pluto


Venus by Susan Seddon Boulet

We’re entering the final week of Venus Retrograde, deepening into the process of redefining values and priorities, renegotiating relationships, and reawakening and restructuring the inner feminine or anima. What do you really love and value? What’s worth putting your time and effort into? How do you nurture your body and the body of the Earth? How well do you love yourself and others? What gives you pleasure, and how do you take responsibility for your own happiness and satisfaction?

As Venus stations – appears to stand still before turning Direct (forward) next Friday – she closely connects with Pluto, Underworld God/Goddess. This Venusian-Plutonian Dark Goddess energy has pervaded this Retro cycle, calling for releasing what no longer gives you pleasure, what’s not aligned with your deepest values, what you are not truly committed to in your heart. Venus first met up with Pluto on November 15, and it may be helpful to look back at what was getting stirred up for you then. Similar themes and issues could resurface, and by the end of next week, it should be easier to get to a place of resolution or completion.

Pluto’s job is to reveal our shadows, the parts of ourselves that seem too scary or painful, the parts we deny, banish to the basement of the subconscious, and project onto others. This Venus Retro cycle has been a lot about meeting, taking responsibility for, and ideally bringing more love, compassion and acceptance to, our shadows.  The themes of Venus Retro will linger on for another month, as we’ll still be in the Retro shadow (i.e., under the influence) until March 4.

venus pentagramPoetically, Venus stations at 13 degrees – a number sacred to the Goddess. Venus completes five synodic cycles (her cycle of Light in relation to the Sun) every eight years, forming a five-pointed star or pentagram in the sky. Five, eight, and their sum, 13, are all numbers associated with Venus. Now, 13 is seen as “unlucky” and the unluckiest day of all is Friday – the day of the week sacred to Venus – the 13th!

The pentagram has been linked with the Goddess since ancient times, and in the Burning Times was associated with “witches,” who were basically any women considered a threat to patriarchal powers. The Inquisition, which terrorized European women (and men, but mostly women) for hundreds of years, has left an ancestral, genetic, psychic imprint on all humans in the West. In this war on Venus, the feminine was tortured out of existence, leaving industrial civilization free to dominate and exploit the planet and its peoples. (Evolutionary astrologer Mark Jones wrote a useful blog post on this topic, Astrology and Witch Hunting, and I also recommend Anne Llewellyn Barstow’s book, Witchcraze.)

In this last week of Venus Retrograde, I vote for revealing, healing, shedding, transforming the parts of ourselves that still operate as if the feminine is unlucky, less than, frightening; for clearing out the places in our individual and collective memory where feminine presence and power are steeped in trauma; for feeling safe enough on the Earth to relax into the sacredness of our bodies, the sacredness of material existence.

- Emily Trinkaus

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Venus in the Underworld – Preparing for a New Cycle of the Divine Feminine

queen of shadows

The Queen of Shadows, from Brian Froud’s The Heart of Faerie Oracle

Venus is in the Underworld – traveling so close to the Sun that she’s invisible to us Earthlings. The feminine in all of us is deeply submerged, there’s a contraction of energy, a pulling inward, a need to be alone, to be quiet, to regenerate. If Taurus and/or Libra is strong in your birth chart, you may be feeling especially hermity and Underworldish.

After shining as a bright evening star, Venus disappeared from the Western horizon on January 5, and is now preparing for her rise as a morning star, and the start of a new cycle of the Divine Feminine, on January 17. Adam Gainsburg calls this current period the “Transmigrational Underworld” – when she’s closing out one cycle and preparing to start the next:

She is migrating from one overall theme of femininity to another. At a personal level, we become undone or unmade from the prior Journey and prepare to be re-imagined and re-constituted for the subsequent Journey. In the very middle of this period when she is at her closest position to Earth, we receive a complete infusion of her energy. It’s an intensification of the qualities, potentials, rejections, strengths and weaknesses of the collective Feminine Self in humanity at that time.” (The Light of Venus, p. 230)

The “complete infusion” of Venusian energy is happening today. Venus precisely conjoins with the Sun (4:24 am Pacific), marking the midpoint of Venus Retrograde (December 21 to January 31), a time for deep reflection about your values, priorities, resources and relationships. You can get more insight into what this means for YOU by finding the house in your birth chart that contains 21 degrees Capricorn. The areas of life represented by that house are the focus of reevaluation, regeneration and renegotiation.

venus in gemini

Two Sisters by James Christensen

The waning Venus cycle started on June 11, 2012, when the Gemini Goddess made her heliacal rise – emerged from the Underworld of invisibility and rose as a morning star. What has your journey of the Divine Feminine looked like since then? What results are manifesting, and what’s coming to a close?

The sign that Venus is in when she starts her 19-month synodic cycle (her cycle of Light, how she appears in relation to the Sun), describes the presiding Goddess of this period. Caroline Casey calls Venus in Gemini “the goddess with a mouth” (Making the Gods Work for You). The feminine has been finding her voice. During this Gemini cycle, I’ve noticed a proliferation of books, blogs, workshops, etc. about the Divine Feminine – we’ve been gathering information, talking, thinking, writing, finding ways to connect and communicate with Her.

At another level, the Venus in Gemini cycle has been a time for healing duality – reconciling the apparent split between masculine and feminine, mind and body, spirit and matter. In traditional astrology Gemini is ruled by Mercury, but at an esoteric level, Gemini is thought to be ruled by Venus, “whose primary purpose is to unite all opposites in bonds of harmonious matrimony” (Alan Oken).

Venus Rises in Capricorn – the Council of Grandmothers

council of grandmothers

The International Council of 13 Indigenous Grandmothers

On January 17, Venus will reappear in the pre-dawn sky, and start her new cycle in Capricorn – the Wise Woman, the Crone, the Grandmother. Venus in Capricorn calls for honoring our elders, and bringing forth the older, wiser, more mature part of ourselves.  The Venus in Capricorn cycle is a time for women to increase their worldly power and authority, and to reinsert feminine values and principles into society. (Read about the post-patriarchal refeminization of Capricorn here.)

Pluto’s long journey through Capricorn (2008-2024) signifies the death of unsustainable social systems and structures, including the economy. We’ve reached the endgame of ever-expanding markets and ever-extractable resources, the endgame of the dominator model of power required to maintain an exploitative economy. The transformation from planet-destroying to sustainable culture, a culture that plans for the needs of the next seven generations (the traditional role of the Council of 13 Grandmothers), is not going to be a top-down process. It never is.

You can see these Venusian and Plutonian Capricorn themes expressed in the Women of Fukushima mini-documentary. While the Japanese government downplays the danger of the nuclear disaster, continues to support nuclear power, and fails to respond to the needs of those affected by radiation, a group of women have emerged to speak their truth and stand for justice:

The nuclear power plants were built by men. Men who say that money is important. That’s what we want to change, with our feminine style and our feminine sensibilities. The most important things are life, health and raising healthy children. We don’t need nuclear power for this. We are fighting to show that there are more important things than money.

World leaders are scheduled to be colossal disappointments while Pluto is in Capricorn, inspiring a disillusioned public to withdraw its projection of authority onto external entities and reclaim responsibility for creating the world we want to live in. As one of the Fukushima women says, “Each and every one of us must change, or the government won’t change.

- Emily Trinkaus

Portlandia friends! Join Shamanic Astrologer Erik Roth and me next Friday evening to celebrate Venus’s new cycle in a community ceremony, and get more in-depth insight into what this cycle means for you in our Saturday workshop. Details here. And come find out about the Astrology of 2014 at New Renaissance this Sunday.

Priestesses everywhere! Join energy-healing high priestess Katie Todd and me next Tuesday for our first Full Moon Galactivation of 2014. Details here.

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Initiation and Imagination beyond the Crossroads – the Astrology of 2014

Dear friends,

Here are some thoughts about the cosmic forces in the new year – it’s a longish post, but trust me, I’m just scratching the surface! I’ll be writing more about Venus and Mars in the coming days… For those of you in and around Portlandia, I’ll be talking about all this – and much more – at the Women’s Community Group on Wednesday night (as in, tonight – this one’s for the ladies), and at New Renaissance on Sunday (all are welcome). Priestesses everywhere, please join Katie and me at our first Lunar Galactic Activation teleclass of the new year, on January 14, for the Cancer Full Moon.

Wishing you radical aliveness in the new year, Emily

The Uranus-Pluto Square – Awakening to Your Power
exact on April 21 and December 14

“Humanity is undergoing an existential crisis in a very real way. We are in the process of choosing if we want to exist or not.” – Steve Bhaerman, Institutionalized Insanity

fukushimaThe square between Uranus in Aries and Pluto in Capricorn – the astrological headline from 2012 to 2015 – is a wake-up call to transform our understanding and use of energy and power before we self-destruct. The most dramatic enactment of this alignment is also the most invisible – the catastrophic radiation poisoning resulting from the ongoing nuclear disaster at Fukushima. (Uranus=uranium, Pluto=plutonium) Japanese reporters are blocked from telling the truth by a new gag law, while the U.S. government and corporate media seem determined to downplay any threat to the health of life on Earth.

There are many competing stories in internet-land about how disastrous the situation may or may not be. But let’s just use common sense – thousands of tons of radioactive waste dumped in the ocean cannot be “cleaned up” and its “dispersal” in the water does not make it go away. Radioactive particles do not dissolve in salt water. “Magical thinking” is very different from REAL magic, which involves acknowledging what is, and intentionally working with the invisible realm to effect a positive outcome.

The denial that defines this era calls forth unprecedented environmental crises, designed to wake us up out of our planet-destroying stupor, wake up to the fact that the Earth is our home, the Earth is our body, and we are all connected (nuclear radiation is a powerful teacher of that truth). We are also waking up to and pioneering a new paradigm of power – power that doesn’t require splitting the atom or otherwise wreaking destruction, but that cooperates with natural law. Power based on knowing that we are connected with all living beings and with the field of energy or consciousness in which we exist.

The Cardinal Grand Cross – Beyond the Crossroads
strongest in early January and April 20-23

cardinal crossIn January and April, Jupiter in Cancer and Mars in Libra move into alignment with Uranus and Pluto, forming a high-pressure Cardinal Grand Cross. The Cardinal signs (Aries, Cancer, Libra and Capricorn) are the leaders and initiators, catalyzing new beginnings into action. The Cardinal Cross represents a turning point, both a death of the old and an initiation into the new. If you have planets in your birth chart between 7-16 degrees of the Cardinal signs, you will be feeling this very personally!

Jupiter in Cancer calls for shedding old stories about where we came from and who we are, and expanding our perception of our origins as a way to transform the future. Mars in Libra animates the Peaceful Warrior, asking us to embody peace from deep within and radiate that out to serve as agents of transformation. The interaction of these two faster-moving planets with the Uranus-Pluto square highlights connections between the personal and political, how our individual stories and actions contribute to the evolving collective story that we are co-creating moment by moment.

The Grand Cross in late April coincides with the next exact Uranus-Pluto square, and is also sandwiched between two Eclipses – meaning, this is a period of high intensity, potential crisis, and emotional volatility. This is the big initiation, the crossing from one reality to another, the death and the rebirth. Mythologist Michael Meade says that the soul is always seeking initiation, which he defines as “the intentional creation of circumstances that cause a person to connect more deeply to what’s already inside them and more extensively to the unseen world” (Initiation and the Soul)

At the crossroads, when it seems that we’re actually beyond the crossroads and in the dying – beyond turning this all around or being saved or somehow making it all better before it’s too late – we can still awaken the parts of ourselves, our unique superpowers, that have been lying dormant and waiting for this exact moment to come alive. The choice of whether or not to exist is one that each of us has to face, and when enough humans choose aliveness, we will generate a spark to light our way to the new cycle.

Neptune and Chiron in Pisces – Grief and Imagination
Neptune in Pisces: 2011-2025; Chiron in Pisces: 2010-2019

piscesWith so much excitement in the Cardinal signs this year, we want to make sure not to overlook Neptune and Chiron, floating along in the invisible, mysterious, chaotic waters of Pisces – the primordial soup from which we were all born and to which we will all return, the Source. The ocean is the literal manifestation of Neptune and Pisces, and the literal Source of life on Earth, and the ocean, scientists tell us, is dying.

Grief, the emotion associated with Neptune and Pisces because its function is to dissolve and dissipate old energies, is an appropriate response to the dying. But in a culture where feeling deeply is pathologized, 9 out of 10 people choose to numb out in any number of ways rather than allow themselves to grieve. This is shadow Neptune/Pisces – escape, addiction, denial – and this is a problem. We shut down our spiritual potential, our capacity to open up to higher states of awareness, and to experience bliss, ecstasy and oneness (high-vibration Neptune/Pisces) in the here and now.

The great, wise ecologist/Buddhist/activist Joanna Macy wrote in a recent essay:

When we open our eyes to what is happening, even when it breaks our hearts, we discover our true size; for our heart, when it breaks open, can hold the whole universe. We discover how speaking the truth of our anguish for the world brings down the walls between us, drawing us into deep solidarity. That solidarity, with our neighbors and all that lives, is all the more real for the uncertainty we face.” (The Greatest Danger)

damanhurWithout grieving, we stay stuck in the old energies, limiting our potential not only to connect deeply with others and with spiritual levels of reality, but also our ability to dream and imagine. Pisces is the last sign of the zodiac – it’s both the ending, and, since time is not linear but cyclical, the dreaming of the new reality. Recently I watched a very inspiring interview with Crotalo Sesamo, an ambassador from Damanhur, a spiritual community in Italy that, among other amazing accomplishments, created an incredible underground temple (you can take a virtual tour here).

In recounting the history of Damanhur, Sesamo talked about the power of having a vision, and the power of people coming together to manifest a dream. Voicing the message of the coming Aquarian Age, he said (I’m paraphrasing):  Just one person alone, that’s nothing, but community is a tool for making dreams come true. While the old paradigm collapses around us, while industrial civilization self-destructs, we need our imaginations awake and active, “We need people who can dream a new life.”

- Emily Trinkaus

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New Year, New Moon – A Quick Note

capricornThis is just a quick note to remind you about tomorrow’s powerhouse New Moon in Capricorn (3:15 AM Pacific) – you do not want to miss this intention-setting opportunity! A New Moon on January 1st is a rare event, and this is a particularly dramatic and ambitious lunation, featuring a Cardinal Grand Cross. The Sun and Moon conjoin with Pluto and Mercury in Capricorn, oppose Jupiter in Cancer, and square Mars in Libra and Uranus in Aries.

The Capricorn New Moon wants you to clarify your commitments, consider your long-term goals, get strategic, make a plan, and be extremely practical and realistic about how you want to spend your time, energy and resources. Pluto, God/Goddess of the Underworld, the principle of death and rebirth, says: there might be something you need to let go of to create space for what you really want, and to regenerate your vitality. Pluto also wants you to align with your deeper soul mission, your core-level rather than ego-driven desires, and strategize accordingly.

The involvement of both Pluto and Uranus – both outer planets and therefore collective or transpersonal forces – in this New Moon also ask you to look at your individual choices within the bigger story of now. Friends, the astrology of 2014 is not f*ing around, and the New Moon on New Year’s Day is a big fat heads-up to get your shiznit together, get real, and get focused on the part that YOU (and only you) came here to play.

If you have a copy of your birth chart and some astro-technical know-how, you can get more insight where these energies are playing out by finding the house in your chart that contains 10 degrees of Capricorn.

For further information about this New Moon (’cause I don’t have time to write about it…), I recommend checking out: Kelley Rosano’s You Are A Master Creator, Amanda Painter’s What Do You Know? (on Planet Waves), and Angela Rider’s New Year’s Resolutions Solution (for practical tips about setting intentions).

Wishing you a blessed 2014! with love and gratitude, Emily Trinkaus

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