WHAT DO WE BELIEVE? WHAT IS TRUE?
by Heather Ensworth — Dec. 29, 2016
What is it we believe? What is true for us? What is really true? The energy of this new lunar cycle is calling us to dive deeply into these questions. What beliefs do we cling to
about ourselves and others? How do those beliefs shape our lives and our feelings and actions? Are those beliefs true? What do we believe about the world that we live in? How does that affect our attitudes and choices? These are questions to meditate on at this time of the New Moon.
As we enter the new lunar cycle today (December 29 at 1:53 am EST), the New Moon and Sun are next to Mercury. Mercury went retrograde on December 20th and will be retrograde until January 9th, a few days before the Full Moon on January 12th. Our New Moon, Sun and Mercury are all next to Pluto in the stars of Sagittarius. The New Moon, Sun and Mercury are located in the head of the Archer who holds his gaze and arrow focused on the galactic center.
Our New Moon is part of a powerful configuration as it is next to Pluto and squaring both Uranus and Jupiter. Jupiter, the ruler of Sagittarius, symbolizes our beliefs and how we integrate our understanding of life. These energies are challenging our beliefs and our ways of seeing life. We are being asked to release the beliefs that bind us and to open to new ways of seeing. This New Moon time is calling us to meditate and reflect on what it is that we believe and what we hold to be true. What is it that we focus on in our lives?
Our beliefs have a profound impact on us emotionally, physically and spiritually. Our minds are powerful. Much of my therapeutic work is focused on helping people to dismantle the constricting or negative beliefs about themselves that lead to depression, anxiety and suffering. So many of us have internalized false beliefs about ourselves from painful experiences in the past. We may believe that we are “bad” or “not good enough” or “not smart enough” or somehow not lovable.
These beliefs constrict us and cause us pain. When we release these false beliefs, we gain more freedom and clarity about who we truly are and deepen our self-love and acceptance of ourselves and others. Often, we are supported in releasing these false beliefs as we are seen through the eyes of another who knows us and loves us and supports us in gently untangling those constricting and binding beliefs.
How we see others is also filtered through our perceptions and projections and fears. How we see the world and our times is also through the lens of our core beliefs, unresolved issues and fears. We here in the United States have just been through a tumultuous election process in which fake news had as much impact as facts. Our beliefs shape what we see as true about others and our world and not just about ourselves.
Take time at the beginning of this lunar cycle and as you enter this New Year to reflect on your beliefs about yourself and others, about the world and about life. What thoughts block you or cause you suffering? What do you believe about yourself that is not true and that causes you to hold yourself back or make yourself small? What unresolved aspects of yourself do you project onto others, undermining your ability to see them clearly? What do you believe about the world and about the times that we live in? Are those beliefs true? How do those beliefs hold you in fear or block you from living fully or seeing the world clearly? Write down those thoughts and beliefs that you want to release and burn them in a fire ceremony. Allow yourself to let go of fear and open to more clarity, freedom, self-love and compassion for others.
You may also want to write down your dreams or intentions for the New Year. Also gift those to the fire and allow the energy of the New Moon and New Year to support you in staying focused on those intentions and visions for the year.
Many spiritual teachers talk about the power of our beliefs and how our thoughts and intentions shape our experience of reality and what we manifest in our lives. What we focus on is what we put our energy into and influences what we do and what we call energetically into our lives. Allow yourself to meditate on what it is that you focus on in your life. Is your true focus on your deeper vision and mission for yourself? Many of us have dreams and visions but actually focus our energy on other things or allow our minds to draw us down other paths. If we want to feel love in our lives, is this what we focus on? Or do we focus on the ways we feel abandoned or let down or disappointed by others? If we want to live out our creativity, do we focus on those things that we are passionate about, that light our inner fire? Or do we suppress those longings and focus on our fears, daily responsibilities and what we feel we need to do to survive in the world? Allow yourself during this lunar cycle to witness your focus and energy and actions. Where are you focusing your attention and intentions? Let yourself be bring that to more awareness so that you are making those choices from a more conscious place.
Now let’s take this New Moon meditation even deeper.
To get clear about our intentions and to focus on them is a powerful way of manifesting, but does this mean that we are shaping our lives from our mind’s beliefs about what is right for us? Are these intentions coming from our deeper soul self or from a place of ego? Take time to ponder on this during this lunar cycle. What is it we are truly centered on in our lives? What is it that we fix our gaze on and focus our lives around? Whatever this is will in fact shape our intentions, actions and experiences.
Mercury is retrograde from December 20th until January 9th. While Mercury retrograde is often perceived as a time of confusion or difficulties with focus or communication, this too may be a false belief. The deeper meaning of Mercury retrograde is that we are called to turn inward, to reflect, to meditate and to step out of our minds and into our hearts. We are being challenged to let go of our egos and our analytical, linear ways of thinking and to drop into a deeper knowing, the knowing of our intuition and of our hearts.
When we let go of living from the mind, we are able to live from our hearts and from our souls. Then the mind becomes an effective servant of our deeper knowing rather than the inner controller or critic constricting the fullness of who we are. Allow yourself to open to the possibility of “losing” your mind during this lunar cycle and gaining a deeper connection with your heart and your inner knowing and connection with the Source of all that is.
There are two levels of the archetype of the Sagittarian Archer where our New Moon is located. On one level, he is the warrior with his arrow focused on either his target/goal or on his enemy. He is focused on power — power to achieve his goals or power over what he fears or wants to control. The deeper archetypal meaning of this Archer is the spiritual warrior who is focusing his gaze and energy on the Galactic Center. He is seeking to connect with Source and to follow a spiritual path. He is not seeking power, conquest or personal success but is seeking to be in service to and empowered by the energies of love and truth that move throughout the Cosmos.
Take time this New Moon to reflect on whether you are living from a place of ego, seeking power and personal success or whether you are seeking to live from your soul self and deeper connection with Spirit? When our gaze is on Source, we live from a place of inner stillness and all of our actions flow from that alignment with Spirit. Then we are “in the flow” and feel held by currents and energies beyond ourselves. Then our will is aligned with the energy of the Cosmos.
As we move into the time of the Full Moon on January 12th, Mercury is now moving in a direct manner again and is aligned with the Galactic Center. As we have released the false beliefs that constrict us and bind us and have opened to our deeper connection with Spirit, we now are able to align our minds with cosmic awareness and allow our thoughts and communication to flow from that connection with Source. What does that mean on a practical level? This means that we can dance in freedom, releasing all of the thoughts and beliefs that swirl around us and move through our minds. We can witness those thoughts but not get on their trains, letting them take us down tracks that leads us into constricting beliefs about ourselves and our lives. We then drop into a deeper knowing that we are living in the particularities of our lives with our individual personalities and thought patterns but, at a deeper level, we are a manifestation of the consciousness of the cosmos that is experiencing itself through us. We are a drop in that Sea of love and wisdom and truth and will soon return to that Source.
At the time of the Full Moon, the Moon is now in the stars of Gemini, near the Wasat point. This is a powerful placement that indicates our ability to move and act and communicate from our connection with Spirit, with Source. The Full Moon and Sun are in a grand square configuration with Pluto, Uranus, Chiron, Mars and Jupiter. This configuration indicates that, as we have released our constricting beliefs and expanded our awareness, we are empowered to live from that deeper clarity. Our true power is now not in our capacity to manifest our personal intentions but in our merger with Source and in our awareness that we are channels of that cosmic energy of love and truth. We become agents of transformation and transmutation. This can be a profoundly freeing and healing time for us. Our actions now flow more effortlessly as we align with those transpersonal energies. We are moving not from a place of ego but from our oneness with Source. We feel the energies of the cosmos flowing through us and live in that wonder and mystery. We also are then able to live from a place of trust and not fear. We no longer need to be in control or live from a place of certainty. We open to the mystery and know that we are part of a process much larger than ourselves. We are carried in those transpersonal currents of change and consciousness and love. Then together, guided by the love and consciousness of the cosmos, we are able to envision and co-create a new world.
WHAT IN THE WORLD IS GOING ON? AND WHO IS ISIS REALLY?
by Heather Ensworth
We are witnessing the world erupting all around us with violent episodes occurring almost daily now. Terrorists lash out in anger and hatred, and we see the backlash of fear and reactivity in response. Some of us think about building walls to keep others out or excluding those of different beliefs or ethnicities from being a part of our communities. We want to feel safe, and many of us strive to do that through boxing ourselves in and keeping others out. Others of us hold the hope for healing and transformation for ourselves and our planet to experience a rebirth into a new way of being.
Many of the terrorist episodes of the last few years are fueled by ISIS — the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria. This group declared its existence on June 29, 2014, calling for a worldwide caliphate/statehood to unite all Muslims and to destroy the West. Calls were put out to the faithful to use whatever means necessary to conquer and control the world. In 2014, Abu Muhammad Al-Adnani, a spokesman for the Islamic State, told his followers that if you don’t have weapons to strike out at westerners, then “smash his head with a rock or slaughter him with a knife or run him over with your car.” This ISIS is an organization of radical hatred and polarization and destruction.
Yet to lash out in anger or to respond with calls for “extreme vetting” of immigrants and a complete ban on those from “terrorist nations” as we hear from Donald Trump, a candidate for president in the United States, is to meet hatred with fear and reactivity and to increase the level of polarization and violence in our world.
From an astrological perspective, we are seeing now and across these past several years the transformational energy of Pluto and Uranus at work. Pluto has been squaring Uranus in the sky, and this is the most intense and transformational planetary combination. The deeper meaning of this configuration is to call us individually and collectively into a death/rebirth, into a profound transformation that will lead us into new paradigms that are more just, equitable and honoring of our diversity and unity as a global community. As we watch the intensity of the events unfold this month, this powerful Pluto/Uranus configuration is in an intense connection with both the Sun and Moon. At the time of the declaration of ISIS in June 2014, the Sun was opposite Pluto and squaring Uranus. When these transformational energies of Uranus and Pluto are targeting the Sun and/or Moon, then these energies of transformation, of death/rebirth, are particularly potent and active.
Pluto is the energy of death/rebirth and in the sign of Capricorn it is calling for the destruction of systems and structures that are out of balance, corrupt or abusing power. Uranus is the energy of lightning and in the sign of Aries is shattering what no longer serves us to open us to new paradigms. These planets are messengers guiding us all into a higher level of consciousness and an understanding that we can no longer live in the deadly paradigms of power over, corruption, greed and destruction. While western culture has brought much of value to the world, we also have to acknowledge the shadow side of our ways of being. The power-over paradigms of the “West” and how we have dominated and exploited much of the world and brought our planet close to irreversible destruction do in fact need to die. Yet those who try to transform these systems and structures that are inequitable and unjust with violence and death are perpetuating the very patterns of destruction and abuse that we seek to end.
If we in the West, in turn, dig in our heels and put walls around our country and hide in gated communities and are determined to not let go of our shadow side — our greed, power over dynamics and sense of superiority — then we are setting ourselves up for further violence and global eruptions. We are not terrorists, yet we are terrible and terrifying in the impact we are having on the world and on those who are less fortunate than we are and on the life forms of this planet.
What is the way out of this quagmire? We need to listen to the messages of the stars and planets. Pluto and Uranus are the guides and transformers leading us into the Aquarian Age. The hallmarks of this new Age are justice, fairness, openness to diversity, collaboration, cooperation and learning the meaning of being a global community.
Ironically, ISIS is the name for the dominant terrorist group in the world right now. Going further back in history, we remember the goddess ISIS who was honored for thousands of years in the Middle East and in Egypt, Greece, Rome and Old Europe from about 3000 BCE to 595 CE.. She was an outgrowth of the ancient Great Goddess, the Mother of all that is who holds the power of life and death, who loves us, heals us and holds us. Over time, the deity ISIS was assimilated into Christianity, and merged with Mary, the mother of Christ. Her archetypal energy is still alive and with us today.
As depicted in ancient Egypt, ISIS was the supreme deity in that region for thousands of years and was known as a leader who ruled with compassion and love. When her husband was murdered, she sought out his body and revived him. When he was torn asunder by his attackers, she lovingly put his body back together, making him whole. She traveled to other nations, treating those who were different in their ethnicity and beliefs with compassion and respect. Her way of being was one of love and of unity. ISIS was powerful and her power was based on the energy of wholeness, healing and love — not on revenge or rage or reactivity.
How do we follow this ISIS? It means holding an energy of love and truth and unity no matter what the circumstances. It does not mean being powerless or becoming helpless victims of violence. It means standing in our strength and understanding the deeper powers of transformation at work in this time and acting in ways that foster unity and healing and compassion. It means doing the hard work to heal and be whole within ourselves so that we can help the world heal and become whole again. This takes enormous courage and strength and commitment. It means becoming more and more open-hearted rather than hard-hearted. It means daring to believe that we are in a time of transformation and rebirth as a planet and as a global community rather than struggling to be the “last ones” standing as the world goes down in flames. It means tenaciously holding to a higher level of consciousness and awareness that this cycle of violence and destruction is the aberration not the way things are meant to be. It means knowing that if we hold the higher vibration of love and unity, we are helping the consciousness of the planet to shift and heal.
It is a powerful synchronicity and very symbolic that ISIS is dominant in the news on a daily basis. Which ISIS do we follow? Do we choose a path of hate or of love? Do we respond to violence with fear or with acts of healing and compassion? Are we mired in the endless cycle of anger, reactivity, destruction, death and despair or do we step out of that old paradigm and into a new way of being?
Like the figures in Plato’s allegory of the cave, we can sit in the darkness, chained to the walls, watching the dance of shadows from the fire behind us believing that this is reality and that there is nothing more to life than struggling to survive and fighting over the crumbs beside us. Or, we can open to the energy of the divine consciousness at work in this time and follow the path of the ancient Isis. And we can allow the energies of Pluto and Uranus to shatter the chains, to open our eyes and hearts, to set us free and to guide us out of the cave into the sunlight and into the energy of light and truth and love.
On April 7th (at 7:24 am EDT), we begin a new lunar cycle as the Moon and Sun come together in the stars of Pisces. This constellation is the image of two fish, one swimming along the path of the ecliptic and the other turned upward in the sky. Pisces symbolizes the way in which we dive into the realm of emotion and our connection with Spirit and integrate this in our daily lives. As we enter this lunar cycle, we are called to open our hearts, honor our feelings, and dive into our deeper awareness and attunement with Spirit.
At the time of the New Moon, Uranus is next to the Sun and Moon, and Pluto is squaring them both. As we have discussed in previous newsletters, this Pluto/Uranus square that we all have been experiencing for the past several years is the most powerful transformational planetary combination. We are all feeling this energy of transformation at the time of the New Moon.
This is impacting us collectively and individually. We see the effects of this intense planetary combination in our current political tumult and in the turmoil that we see globally. If not worked consciously, this Pluto/Uranus square can manifest in chaotic actions or extremist views. It is a call for change, yet if we do not work with these energies with awareness, we may seek change for change’s sake or choose violence and destruction rather than transformation and constructive reform.
As Pluto and Uranus activate the New Moon in Pisces, if not worked consciously, we may also feel emotionally overwhelmed and confused or flooded with anxiety. However, if we work this configuration with awareness, we will gain clarity about our emotions and experience the expansion of our intuition and connection with Spirit. We are then able to feel held in higher consciousness and in the oneness of the cosmos.
At the individual level, this configuration is calling us into our own personal transformation. Uranus helps us to become aware of patterns and ways of being that no longer serve us, while Pluto empowers us to move through this time of transformation with courage. Uranus is next to the dwarf planet, Eris/Xena, so this is also a time when we are challenged to look at how we are meant to live in alignment with our true selves and be willing to follow our own unique path rather than conforming to others’ expectations or cultural conventions.
Uranus and Pluto are also now in aspect to Black Moon Lilith, which is opposite the Sun and New Moon. We are called to become more clear about our primary relationships and to assess whether these relationships are in balance and are truly mutual and equal. If not, we may need to reflect on how the relationship needs to change to become more mutual or whether we need to end the relationship.
Saturn and Mars continue to lie at the feet of the stars of Ophiuchus and are also in aspect (a trine) to the Sun and New Moon. We are guided by healing energy to assess what actions we need to take to be true to who we are.
This energy of Uranus that is prominent in this lunar cycle is powerful in that Uranus represents the higher octave of Mercury. Mercury reflects how we think and learn and communicate, while Uranus represents how we are able to be in alignment with divine mind or our higher consciousness. This time of the New Moon is an important time to meditate and to tune into insights or flashes of awareness that may come to us to guide us in our lives. Also, pay attention to synchronicities and guidance through dreams, through chance encounters or through the messages of our bodies and emotions.
Beneath our human minds, limited by our own experiences and thoughts, we are connected to the cosmic consciousness which surrounds us and is within us. When we drop into that deeper awareness, we are able to assess wisdom and clarity that we are not able to come to through our own thoughts and reflections. Uranus is associated with the seventh chakra and with the ways in which we are guided by and held in divine love and wisdom. If we allow ourselves to meditate and open to that guidance, we can gain clarity about what needs to change in our lives and be gifted with insights about how to live more fully in alignment with our true selves.
Uranus helps to break us out of our illusions and false beliefs. We all carry certain assumptions or beliefs based on our past experiences and ways that we have coped with pain or trauma in our lives. Uranus can shatter those false beliefs and free us from our defenses or the ways that we have limited ourselves and not been true to who we really are and who we are meant to be.
The insights or clarity that may come at the time of this New Moon may not be comfortable. It may shatter the familiar ways that we have viewed the world or the protective patterns that we have developed to feel safe in our lives. But in breaking us out of these old ways of being, Uranus helps us to see our lives in a more clear and true way and allows us to open to this time of transformation. Pluto then helps us to be willing to dive deep into the process of change and to be empowered to move into new ways of being.
On April 22nd (1:25 am EDT), we move into the time of the Full Moon. The Full Moon is now between the stars of Virgo and Libra, while the Sun is still in the stars of Pisces. The energy of this Full Moon is guiding us in how we are able to dive deep, honor our emotions, attune to our connection with Spirit and then bring our true selves into the light of awareness and into expression in our daily lives. We are also called to continue to align with the energy of Uranus and of divine mind. How are we moving beyond our tendency to view life in polarities (good/bad, right/wrong, male/female, light/dark) and expanding to see that everything is a part of the Oneness of all that is and an expression of the divine?
During this Full Moon time, Uranus is now also next to Venus, giving us more clarity about our relationships and helping us to attune to patterns that need to shift in ourselves and in our relationships to be more true to who we are and more in balance. Uranus is the archetype of the truth-teller and of daring to break free from our limited beliefs and the ways that we adapt to cultural norms or others’ expectations of us. We are called to live in truth, to follow our own unique path and to listen to the guidance of Spirit in how we need to make changes in our own lives and in how we are in relationship with others.
A point of tension at this Full Moon time is Mercury’s placement in the part of the sky that is known as “in the eye of Cetus”. Mercury lies between the stars of Perseus, the warrior, and Cetus, the whale. We are challenged to look at our thoughts and beliefs and the ways in which we get mired in our own inner conflicts or in seeing things in polarities (as good or bad, right or wrong, etc.). We are called to step out of conventional ways of thinking and seeing and to open to a higher level of consciousness.
Everything around us is in this time of profound transformation. How are we allowing ourselves to open to that energy and to release old patterns, ways we have clung to our illusion of control and security and the ways that we have conformed to fit in or feel successful in the world. How are we willing to step off the familiar “beaten path” and take risks to open to new paradigms and new patterns in our lives? How are we willing to speak our truth and act in ways that are in alignment with our true selves? Are we willing to attune to our intuition and our deeper knowing, to expand and open to the consciousness that moves through the cosmos and make choices in our lives from that way of knowing and being? If we do, this can be a liberating and exhilarating time. We allow ourselves to surrender to the energies of transformation and open to seeing life with the eyes of Spirit, of divine consciousness. We then feel the freedom to move in new directions without fully knowing our destination and allow ourselves to be in the mystery and not knowing, guided moment by moment by Spirit.
Uranus represents the energy of alignment with divine mind, of enlightenment. It shatters our sense of separation — from others, from Spirit, from our true selves — and opens us to the awareness that that sense of peace and deeper consciousness that we long for is not something we have to attain but is already within us. We drop beneath the garb of our cultural context and the costumes and coping mechanisms of our personalities into a place of clarity, stillness and knowing. We then experience the freedom that comes from the deep sense of alignment and unity with Spirit and with our truth within us.
By Heather Ensworth
On July 8th, we move into a new lunar cycle. As we seek to understand the meaning of this lunar month, we need to listen to the wisdom coming to us from the chart of this new Moon as well as the star placements of the Sun, Moon and planets. Our modern western (tropical zodiac) chart is fixed in time and relates more to the Earth’s seasonal cycles and how these energies affect the meanings of the planets than to their actual placements in the sky. I believe that the actual locations of the planets in the sky speaks to their deeper intent for us and the configurations in the astrology chart give us a sense of how these energies manifest in us here on Earth. (more…)
By Heather Ensworth
On June 8th (11:55 AM EDT), we move into a new lunar cycle. In the tropical zodiac chart, the New Moon is part of a stellium in Gemini, honoring the energy of the Twins who represent the polarity of light and dark within ourselves and in the world. If we look to the sky, it is Mercury and Venus who are actually in the stars of Gemini with Jupiter and the Sun and New Moon falling in the horns of the Bull of Taurus. All of these luminaries and planets are extended over the constellation, Orion. Orion is one of the most visible and profound constellations in our sky (more…)
By Heather Ensworth – May 2013
A note about astrology, the Boston marathon tragedy and these monthly newsletters:
Last month, a tragic event occurred here in Boston with the bombings at the Boston Marathon on April 15th. Many have wondered if that event could be seen in the chart for that day or in the energies of the April lunar cycle. I strongly believe that astrology is not predictive or deterministic. While some astrologers try to predict external events from planetary configurations, I firmly believe that astrology is showing us energy patterns or themes for any given time period. What we do with those energetic patterns and their outcomes are influenced by our free will. (more…)
By Heather Ensworth – April 2010
On April 14th, we move into a new lunar cycle of the “Seed” or “Flower”Moon. For many months now, we have been experiencing the transformational influence of the ongoing Chiron/Neptune conjunction and the Uranus/Saturn opposition.
This is a time to step into our deeper intuitive knowing of who we are and who we are meant to be. This is the time when we can open to the alchemical magic of the lead becoming gold, of our personalities dissolving to open to our soul’s true purpose. As we have discussed in previous newsletters, the archetypal energy of the Chiron/Neptune combination is to help us to dissolve and release (more…)
By Heather Ensworth – September 2011
As I write this newsletter on the day of the New Moon, a hurricane is moving up the eastern coast of the United States. Our new Moon arrives at 11:04 pm (EDT), bringing high tides and increasing the flooding along the coast. The new Moon is in the sign of Virgo and lies in opposition to Neptune and Chiron. Neptune is the god of the Sea and of storms. As we have discussed in recent newsletters, Neptune and Chiron have been moving together for months and are calling us to heal and to dissolve whatneeds to be dissolved. (more…)
JUNE/JULY 2012 – LUNAR CYCLE
NEW MOON – JUNE 19, 2012 (11:03 AM EDT)
FULL MOON – JULY 3, 2012 (2:52 PM EDT)
SEEING WITH NEW EYES
By Heather Ensworth
This lunar cycle arrives on June 19, 2012 (11:03 AM EDT) a day before the summer solstice, the longest day of the year. Venus has now returned from the underworld as a morning star, rising before the Sun. (more…)
MAY/JUNE 2012 – LUNAR CYCLE
NEW MOON – MAY 20, 2012 (7:48 PM EDT)
FULL MOON – JUNE 4, 2012 (7:13 AM PM EDT)
SIGNS AND SYMBOLS OF NEW WAYS OF BEING
By Heather Ensworth
This lunar cycle is a very powerful one as it begins with an annular eclipse of the Sun and is followed by a partial lunar eclipse (more…)
APRIL/MAY – LUNAR CYCLE
NEW MOON – APRIL 21, 2012 (3:19 AM EDT)
FULL MOON – MAY 5, 2012 (11:35 PM PM EDT)
MOVING THROUGH THE BIRTH CANAL
By Heather Ensworth
In these monthly newsletters, the current lunar cycle and its meaning is explored both through looking at the astrological chart (tropical zodiac) for the time of the New Moon and Full Moon and also by looking at (more…)