Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Follow the Moon: Forecast for May 26, 2017—May 31

Out beyond ideas of wrongdoing and rightdoing,
there is a field. I'll meet you there.

When the soul lies down in that grass,
the world is too full to talk about.

Ideas, language, even the phrase each other
doesn't make any sense. 
Halal ad-din Muhammad Rumi (trans. By Coleman Barks)

This almost too famous poem was my introduction to Rumi, a 13th-century Sufi mystic, teacher, and poet. Most likely it was yours too. Perhaps a poem can be too well known. Perhaps familiarity breeds an immunity to the absolute brilliance that Rumi is expressing in this poem, and that would be a tragedy. In the 21st century, we seem to be as caught up in judging the right or wrongness of our actions as people in the 13th century must have been. Why else would Rumi point them to the field beyond dualities where the world is too full to talk about? Even if it is over quoted, why does this poem speak to us so strongly? Why does it feel like freedom? 

I think the trouble is we are trapped by the binary, often thinking we only have two options when there are actually so many more. This trap extends to choice, to judgment, to gender. Why do we limit our options? What about dualism feels safe and understandable? The Gemini season asks us to look at our default patterns of binary thinking. What are the traps? What are the gifts, because we wouldn’t do it if there were no benefits. 

Let’s think about Gemini for a moment. This is the sign of the Twins. Generally, the twins meant are Castor and Pollux from Greek myth. According to their story, they were born at the same time to the same mother, but Castor’s father was human and Pollux’s was the god Zeus. Thus one brother was mortal and the other immortal. When Castor died, Pollux suffered the loss and searched to be reunited with his brother. This longing for wholeness while experiencing a split is a core experience of Gemini. The Gemini season, late spring in the northern hemisphere, is the season of pollination, a time of traveling between the blossoms to create new life. Gemini, as a mutable air sign, is seeking the ineffable: complete knowledge, true connections, potent integrations. Curiosity is Gemini’s superpower, fueling a lot of creativity and insight. Yet Gemini can get lost in the search too, yo-yoing back and forth between ideas and experiences, not knowing how to still the endless search and questing mind. Gemini portrays the traps of dualism as much as it show us how to step outside the binary into freedom. This is a paradox, a state of being that seems to be second nature to Gemini, and which encourages expansion of knowledge and understanding. 

This Gemini lunar cycle invites us to step into the expansiveness of paradox and the liberation from simplistic dualism. There is far more than rightdoing and wrongdoing in this life. There is daring. There is wonder. There is a world of blossoms to visit. There is a field where the world is too full to talk about. I wonder what happens when my soul lays down there? Can you imagine? The path of paradox and complexity entices my soul this lunar cycle. I dare to imagine myself out of the trap of the binary. Do you hear the call?

Moon enters Gemini 7:15 am CDT
May 25—New Moon: Seeding. Wonder. The word comes from a root that means “to be astonished,” and astonish comes from a root that means “to leave someone thunderstruck.”At this New Moon, I wonder how to find the field beyond rightdoing and wrongdoing.Seeking the thunderstrike, this month, I invite wonder to help me wander. I’ve described my life as a meander. I have Mars in Gemini in my natal chart. My locomotion (Mars) is often thrown off track, sometimes by a passing curiosity and sometimes by a steady doubt that there even is a right track. I am invoking this Mars, which happens to be only one degree away from the Sun and Moon in the New Moon chart, to help me wander towards the field that Rumi described as a place where, “Ideas, language, even the phrase each other doesn't make any sense.” Both opportunities and challenges will dot the bends in the road during the Gemini lunar cycle.

A major signature of this lunar cycle is the opposition between Mars in Gemini and Saturn in Sagittarius. Oppositions provoke dualistic thinking. An opposition shows two sides facing off. The Saturn side sees the ways we need to be accountable and responsible. Saturn tempts us into thinking there are right and wrong ways to do thing, right and wrong sides to an issue. Sagittarius, as a sign prone to dogmatism, doesn’t help in this regard. Saturn has been showing us the outcomes of our beliefs, the way an idea can morph into a tenet and a tenet into a law. Beliefs matter and our beliefs want to matter. Is there a truth that can break our chains? Is there a truth that will create a better world? Saturn first entered Sagittarius December 2014 . Saturn will leave Sagittarius December 2017. As we near the end of this transit, the Gemini lunar cycle is a good time to get perspective on what Saturn’s transit of this sign has meant. 

Mars in Gemini presents another point of view to the singular vision of Saturn in Sagittarius. There isn’t one truth, but many, and if we are thrown off by the ever-changing nature of truth, we won’t like this particular influence. As I mentioned above about my own natal Mars in Gemini, this wanderer can lose focus, interject skepticism, and obstinately challenge any solution that isn’t diverse and open to wonder. Where are we rigidly holding onto beliefs that need to open up? Where are we losing focus for constructive responsibility surrounding our beliefs? Each planet and sign has wisdom to offer. Either/or thinking prevents us from accessing it. This isn’t easy. Social media has made it even harder to hear other points of view. People are isolating in enclaves that think alike. Some of these groups, which foster hatred and racism, are dangerous. Other groups may be focused on positive influences but still miss out on diverse perspectives. This may be the negative influence of Saturn in Sagittarius. What feels enlivening as we plant seeds in Gemini soil? What helps us see outside ourselves? Mars is a warrior. Will you fight for diversity?

Another prominent feature of this New Moon is a yod aspect pattern. Although the aspects are not exact, they influence this seeding moment. A yod is a triangle comprised of two quincunx and one sextile aspect. There are gifts and challenges within this pattern. The planets involved are: Mercury in Taurus sextile Neptune in Pisces, and both Mercury and Neptune quincunx Jupiter in Libra. Both Neptune and Jupiter are stationary at this time, meaning that within this lunar cycle, they will change apparent direction. Jupiter will move direct and Neptune retrograde. Stationary planets are more potent. The stretch (quincunx) between these planets involves heartfelt ideals and abstract beliefs. They seem alike but come from different places. We can believe something with our hearts and something else with our heads, without letting those values meet in the middle. Part of moving out of the binary is experiencing intellect and emotion as blended and whole. Compassion breaks down false divisions in ourselves. The stretch between Mercury and Jupiter involves concrete expression of our beliefs. The challenge here may be to soften our strong opinions, consider options, notice the impact in our bodies. The sextile between Mercury and Neptune is an invitation to open to messages from Mystery. As we soften hard-line stances, Jupiter’s impact strengthens. Jupiter is pushing us to act on behalf of the underdog, to notice and stand up against injustices, to find our balance as the world swirls around us. Paradoxically, operating from a rightdoing/wrongdoing perspective doesn’t get us there. What other choices do you have? 

The nitty gritty of this lunar moment comes from the exact square between Venus in Aries and Pluto in Capricorn. The recent retrograde journey that Venus took in Aries, the sign of her detriment (that means a planet in the sign opposite of the one it rules) shook some relationships to the core. Venus is still in her detriment and is now challenged by Pluto to come clean in relationship. Really clean. We are pushed to release emotions that could be considered unbecoming. We are told a lot of stories about how not to rock the boat. We are given far fewer tools about handling conflict well. If we step out of the binary approach to conflict, what other ways can we do this dance with each other? 

Forecast for May 26, 2017—May 31
Moon in Gemini
Friday, May 26. The Moon in Gemini wants to get along with everyone. And almost does. The trine between the Moon and Jupiter in Libra sets the tone early. We feel expansive, especially with our words and thoughts. We may not always be clear, however, with the Moon making a square to oceanic Neptune in Pisces. But don’t worry, perhaps we don’t need to be totally clear to get along with others. The Moon harmonizes with Venus in Aries even as it makes a conjunction with Mars in Gemini. We can’t stop talking until the Moon opposes Saturn in Sagittarius tonight when we stop to think over the day’s events and try to make sense of the various moods and enlightenments we experienced. We are learning about diversity this month. Today has given us a multi-course meal to digest.

Moon enters Cancer 6:34 am CDT
Saturday, May 27. The yod aspect pattern from the New Moon chart gets closer to exact today when Mercury in Taurus makes a quincunx to Jupiter in Libra. We are adjusting thinking and speaking styles, especially around communicating our values and beliefs. This could be a stressful day if we don’t embrace the challenge of communication. You may be asked to change your routines. Perhaps you’d benefit from turning off social media for a few days. Silence opens up a whole new appreciation for the ways we fill the space with needless words and thoughts. The quincunx aspect is perfect for forcing us to notice and adapt to complexity. Complexity takes on new patina when we begin to appreciate that we don’t need to conform to a binary approach to life. The Moon in Cancer helps us anchor insights to our deepest selves. The metaphor for that self is the home. Welcome paradox into yours.  

Moon in Cancer
May 28—Crescent Moon: Germinating. Recall Rumi’s words about the field beyond the ideas of rightdoing and wrongdoing. He describes a world that is too full to talk about. For me, this brings to mind the emotions of wonder, connection, and the ineffable experiences that we can’t find the words for. What if we used this lunar cycle to notice those states of being? What if we learned how to cultivate them? What then? Eight hundred years ago, Rumi knew this method. Other mystics have pointed the way too. One clue from Rumi is that duality—you/me, right/wrong, good/bad—will not bring us there. 

Planetary patterns provide the opportunity to allow Gemini seeds of diversity and multiplicity to take root. A yod aspect pattern has been building since the New Moon on May 25. The planets are Jupiter in Libra, Neptune in Pisces, and Mercury in Taurus. The word yod comes from Hebrew, meaning finger of God. This finger points to stationary Jupiter in Libra. Since September 2016,  Jupiter has been transiting through the sign of balance, justice, and harmony. Those three qualities found within one sign, do not co-exist easily. How do we find balance as we work for justice? Where is the harmony in method and in outcome of this work? Jupiter has brought a sense of urgency to this quest for justice as we see injustices increasing all over the world. This is important. The intention to step out of the binary to find new ways of being, thinking and acting in the world is not just for fun. We know this. It feels as if the fate of the world depends on it. Neptune and Mercury are pushing us to consider diverse and inspired ways to embrace complexity. 

To add even more urgency, the Moon in Cancer forms a grand cardinal cross with Jupiter, Pluto in Capricorn, and Uranus in Aries. Things are happening in world and in our personal lives that feel revolutionary and transformative. Consider how you want to walk through this world. What if we found that field where the world was simply too full to talk about? 

Moon enters Leo 7:12 am CDT
Monday, May 29. Mars in Gemini opposes Saturn in Sagittarius early in the day. Oppositions tempt us into binary thinking. Two ends of a pole seem to be in conflict with each other and offering only two choices: A or B. What a conundrum. Mars is action and Saturn is responsibility. Gemini is the pollination of many ideas. Sagittarius is the search for unifying truth. Mars is busy visiting the flowers. Saturn says live up to your truth, be accountable to it. Mars is the child and Saturn is the grownup. If we choose Mars, we miss out on having masterful impact. If we choose Saturn, we miss out on the fun. Do you feel yourself stuck between these places? What if we queered the options? What if we refused to see only two choices? What does that look like? This is a great day to break out of the box. The Moon in Leo provides just the fuel to do that. Enjoy the puzzle.

Moon in Leo
Tuesday, May 30. So, perhaps today, we see the other side to all this Gemini influence, a little too many options, a little too much bouncing all over the place. Gemini is appreciated for breaking up stale constructs, but can be challenging when it doesn’t know that the work of expanding options is over. Mars in Gemini makes a sextile to Uranus in Aries today. We are so full of ideas and readiness to act on them, that we might scare ourselves or others. This influence could be just what we need to wake up or break free. But be careful if it feels more like Tigger from Winne-the-Pooh. The Moon in Leo adds more daring and risk taking. Like I said, great for waking up and breaking through. 

Moon enters Virgo 11:16 am CDT
Wednesday, May 31. After an energetic day yesterday, it may have been hard to sleep last night. When the Moon moves into Virgo, we might settle a bit since Virgo is earth, but we might just continue with the over-stimulation because Virgo likes to get things done. Don’t push yourself too hard. The trine between Mercury in Taurus and Pluto in Capricorn add strength and endurance, especially to projects that require communication or learning. If you have been stressed by opening up to more options, then this transit may help you integrate the personal work you’ve been doing to see beyond the binary. 

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