Let the Dance Happen and Revolution Will Follow: October's Full Moon in Aries

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“If I can't dance, I don't want to be part of your revolution.” Emma Goldman

“But let there be spaces in your togetherness and let the winds of the heavens dance between you.” Khalil Gibran

 “In so many and such important ways, then, do the planets bear witness to the earth's mobility.” Nicholas Copernicus explaining a heliocentric model of the universe

October 15, 2016 Full Moon in Aries, 23º14, 9:23 PM PST, Conjunct Uranus, 22º29, Eris 23º05, Mercury in Libra square Pluto in Capricorn, 15º01, Mars in Capricorn, 12º45, Venus in Scorpio, 27°27


The only constant in life seems to be change. And sometimes it seems to me the change is gradual like the passage of the seasons, other times abrupt and unexpected. So deeply embedded in our processes of change is the dynamic of relationship. Who touches our heart, who offers us a hand to dance? The one we connect to because we see soul with our eyes. Synchronicity brings you together, possibility is there, and as the French say “et plus si affinities.” It is more than “déjà vu.” Is it projection? Are we seeing self in other? What is authenticity in relationship? Equally meaningful, who steps away, abandons us, leaves the dance floor empty when the time seems ready to take the dance deeper and develop intimacy? Is it your fear or mine? We have been traveling through the season of Libra, the push and pull of the dance we do with others, finding the right balance, applying the right discrimination to know what and who we need in our Divine dance with our own soul. Our Milky Way is composed of solitary stars, like our Sun, along with binaries, pairs of stars that orbit each other at distances unique to each pair, triplets and multiple star systems. Like the stars above, we orbit one another to create meaning in our lives and to discover perhaps what we ourselves have hidden. At times, we are best alone. Some of us truly become stronger as single stars. But it helps to remember that the origin of the word disaster is “without stars.” We all have Libra expressed in our charts; we all need others to grow.

Last month, in the northern hemisphere, the Celtic festival of Mabon marked the time of year known as fall equinox when the day and night are of equal length. The Sun’s passage into Libra on the equinox each year is tinted by the blending energies, like colors of autumn leaves, marked by the shifting motion of the planets, the angles they create. This moment we find ourselves in 2016 is part of the rhythmic cycles of the planets’ motion through time. This Mabon came just as Mercury finished his retrograde motion in Virgo. September was a time of revision, remake, review with the critical mental processes of Mercury as he retraced through his own sign. He was in his ‘shadow’ until October 6th when he reached 29º04’ Virgo (the shadow period is the time when Mercury is moving ahead but has not yet reached the degree he initially turned retrograde). Mid-October we find Sun, Mercury and Jupiter together in Libra. Mercury’s quick passage through the sign triggers the slow dance of Jupiter, bringing us fresh perspective and awareness of the part relationship plays in our lives through the house Libra falls in our birth chart. Later in the month, the Sun and Mercury enter Scorpio as we approach Samhain, Halloween, All Souls Day or El Dia de los Muertos. We move from the earthly dance of day-to-day relationship with friends, family, lovers, to the shamanic healing spiritual realm of the souls of the other side. Happy Halloween! And may the spirits of your ancestors bless you. Now is the time to pay them homage and remember.

El Dia de los Muertos in the Highlands of Guatemala.

El Dia de los Muertos in the Highlands of Guatemala.

October’s sky asks us to focus upon where we want to create a stronger sense of balance and equity in our evolving dance with others. Where or with who do we work one-on-one and is it time to develop that dance further? When I think of Libra, I think of self as well as other, in a supportive dialogue of give and take. The recent New Moon that followed the autumnal equinox on September 30th was at 8°15 Libra. She was in a conjunction with Jupiter about seven hours before and in a supportive sextile (60°) to Saturn almost seven hours after. Jupiter opens us up to opportunity, followed by Saturn in an aspect granting possibility for structure and reality for our New Moon dreams. The weeks ahead in October are great times to reflect upon the next year, as Jupiter moves through Libra, how we might establish, through our relationships, the love and support we need. Checking the house(s) in your birth chart where the sign Libra falls may help focus upon the places in daily life you might find this work productive.

After fall equinox and then throughout the first half of October, Venus, the planet ruling Libra, moves through Scorpio, entering Sagittarius October 18th. While we have the Sun, Jupiter and Mercury in Libra the first half of October, a Scorpionic Venus pushes us into deeper territory, perhaps allowing us to get beyond the surface pleasantries of Libra. Even a good salesman or, dare I say, political candidate, can manipulate words and use persuasive actions to reap the benefits of relationship. But Scorpio Venus delves into truth; what really is behind our need for ‘balance’ - harmony? Is it a personal agenda, a kind of selfishness through other? Again, it may help to meditate upon Jupiter’s transit through Libra and how he touches your birth chart. These are the places (houses) and avenues of expression (planets) where you may consciously reflect upon “What kind of relationship are we building?” “What place does it serve in the greater good of our lives or in the larger collective?” Look below the surface and investigate what needs to be transformed. Later in the month, Venus’ passage through Sagittarius opens us up to more fiery, outgoing play and release, during our time of masquerade and tricks and treats. By then, the Sun and Mercury have entered Scorpio, a New Moon in Scorpio occurs at 7°44 on October 30th moving us into the season of darkness and spirit.

The sign of Libra, the scales, with its emphasis upon balance, reminds me of the fusion of opposites, the union of substances, and the Latin expression Coincidentia oppositorum, in the ancient practice of alchemy. The psychiatrist Carl Jung used this Latin phrase to characterize the need we all have to integrate opposing aspects within our own psyche. The sign of Libra and the planet Venus ask us to consider the role of others in the alchemical process of the evolving soul. I brought together images from the alchemist’s workshop to represent Jupiter in Libra in the illustration I include above. Centuries ago, alchemists developed a musical octave, similar to a scale, composed of each of the seven known planets (including the Moon) and ending with Saturn. The child in the photograph below is playing a musical interpretation of the octave in a museum exhibition about alchemy (Here Saturn appears on the top of the octave as if beginning the next octave up in progression). Called the Music of the Spheres, astronomers, who were also astrologers of the time, saw the relationship between the orbits of the planets as harmonic intervals reflecting the similar natural harmonies of music.

In turn, aspects (the angles between planets) also carried a harmonic structure: conjunction 1st harmonic, opposition (dividing 360° in two) 2nd harmonic, trine 120° 3rd harmonic, square 90° 4th harmonic, quintile 72° 5th and sextile 60° the 6th harmonic. Libra is ruled by Venus, the planet known for having the most perfect circular orbit in the solar system. Venus in Libra expresses the beauty of aesthetic harmony, balance and perfection of form. The Music of the Spheres, the music of the planets, the harmonies embodied in the aspects, like the binary and multiple star systems, demonstrate an interdependence of energy. “As above, so below.” Aspects, angles, the planetary positions in sign and house of our birth chart act in unison like a musical score. Coincidentia oppositorum is an internal, evolutionary process that lasts a lifetime, the lifetime of the soul. Yet like the celestial dance of the planets through time, the fusion of self is dependent upon harmonics played between self and other. Enter our need for the sign of Libra, the 7th House, the work one does with another, the work one does in relationship. 

Then we have a Full Moon, conjunct Uranus and Eris, in Aries, October 15th. The radical rebel, Uranus, graces the night sky less than a degree away from the Moon. Eris and Uranus have been conjunct for several weeks. In Greek mythology, Eris is the Goddess of discord. Potentially vindictive, she carries the energy of the one left behind and not invited to the “party.” Eris is a dwarf planet receiving critical interest among astrologers in recent years. Here she is coming together with the abrupt agent of change, enlightened thought, freedom, independence and genius of Uranus, in Aries the sign of the self, the initiator of fiery action and leadership. The word, revolution, in all its forms in current usage, comes to mind with this Full Moon. Revolution is often applied to radical social upheaval and overthrow of political power, but the word stems from the sudden shift in cultural and scientific thinking that began when Copernicus explored “outside the box,” discovering a new way of seeing the universe (at this point in time, the universe was perceived to be the solar system). The Copernican Revolution shifted a 2000-year old foundational view in astronomy: the Earth was seen previously as the center of the solar system, while Copernicus led the way to eventual acceptance of a heliocentric model, placing the Sun at the center and the planets orbiting the Sun. The Earth “revolves” as well, hence “revolution” around the Sun, the Copernican “Revolution.” The movements of the planets confirmed the theory, as Copernicus wrote, “In so many and such important ways, then, do the planets bear witness to the earth's mobility.” As we saw the emphasis upon relationship between self and other in Libra, and the relationship of planets through the Music of the Spheres and in aspect, revolution comes from the independent thought of genius in response to the work of previous generations of astronomical study. In turn, this word “revolution” came to symbolize societal shifts, rise of new paradigms, brand new ways to visualize and shake up the status quo. Our modern definition of the word “revolution” was born.

What does this mean for our current Full Moon coming mid-October? We have a moment of claiming our personal power, initiative, drive to individuate, to be authentic self, and let the inner rebel thrive. Lead the revolution - even if it is an internal one. With the other planetary energies at play, a Libra Mercury and Jupiter in a square with Capricorn Mars the days before, and Mercury forming a square to Pluto in Capricorn on the day of the Full Moon, building upon the dance, our Libra skills of diplomacy and the insights we gain by working with others can help bring about and transform the Aries warrior, the Capricorn elder and leader in us all. Where the planets Eris and Uranus, as well as the sign Aries, fall in your birth chart reveal the places where a revolution of the authentic self can manifest. Claim personal freedom and let your genius speak. Be cautious of the inner Goddess Eris and the potential for resentment, spite and hurt (look to see where 23° Aries falls in your birth chart). Instead be part of a collective paradigm shift through your individual gift of genius or through the spirit of the rebel. In relationship, honor the freedom and space the other needs. As Khalil Gibran wrote, “But let there be spaces in your togetherness and let the winds of the heavens dance between you.” It may be a time of awakening, a time for sudden, abrupt change, where the light bulb goes on. As the bumper sticker says, “Shift happens.”

Wishing everyone blessings during the Libra and Scorpio seasons, the Full Moon in Aries, and through Samhain, El Dia de los Muertos, our most sacred time of connection!