The next leader will be the community: Astrology for July 8th 2017, full moon in Capricorn

241 years ago a group of wealthy white men gathered to decree themselves sovereign and the United States was born through a declaration of independence. On this day “all men” were granted equality and “unalienable rights” towards pursuit of life, liberty and happiness. And of course there was no mention of the indigenous peoples who had populated the land well before any of the forefathers had even been born. There was no mention of men who were not white, many of whom (and women too) were laboring constantly to produce the wealth these founders would claim. There was no mention of women, at all.

Born on the 4th of July, the USA is a Cancer. The United States’ sun is conjunct Jupiter and Venus, with Mercury (retrograde) degrees away later in the sign. Cancer, as you might know, rules the hormone oxytocin. It is the sensation of familiarity and tribalism, as well as the instinct to defend one’s own. With Venus and Jupiter in the mix we have a big, optimistic sense of righteous ownership and belonging, which means just as big boundaries to defend.

The sun is in the space of the chart that describes relationship and intimacy. It projects the image of what it wishes to be. It’s forming a square with Saturn in Libra who sits in the place of leadership and public figures. Saturn in this sign is stuck on fairness and wants to be a good judge. The square to the sun in emotional Cancer is a guarantee that good judgment is hard to come by. The hormonal urge to possess, protect and defend is too strong. There is no objectivity.

Since autumn of 2016 the planet Jupiter has been moving through Libra. Today it sits nearly exact on the natal placement of USA’s Saturn, while of course, the sun today reaches its yearly return. Jupiter is the teacher. It grows our minds through expanding the lessons we need into every ounce of our lives. The last year has forced us to regard Libra’s issues of relationship, equality, compromise and diplomacy in ways that many of us never considered before by forcing us to contend with them over and over again on every level of our lives, especially as mirrored to us through those in leadership.

On July 8th Jupiter will sit at a hard angle to the sun (ego) and the moon (emotion,) forcing both of them to contend with the lessons of relating. Can you be the one you say you are? Can you compromise even when it sucks? Can you be fair even if it feels like a loss? The Sun, as mentioned before, is in Cancer, now with the planet Mars conjunct. This pairing for the United State’s chart brings a ferocity and zealousness to the identity. It’s a surge of assertion and exclamation point on the ego.

Meanwhile the moon (opposite the sun and Mars) is in Capricorn conjunct Pluto. Capricorn, the sign of governmental structures, bureaucracy, tradition and rules is being taken through the inferno. Pluto is now “in orb” , or close enough to be felt, to its natal placement, meaning that the United States has officially started it’s Pluto return.

Many of you have heard of Saturn’s return. The age between 27-32 when Saturn returns to the place it was when you were born. This transit is the astrological marker of adolescence into adulthood. For many of us these years are fraught with anxiety as we step into more and more responsibility, let go of some dreams, take on others, and generally try to grow up. With a 248 year orbit, Pluto’s return is something we hear less about. None of us will experience it for ourselves, but most of us will get to experience it for this country.

Think of the Pluto return as a rebirth. See the ways not just the United States, but the entire world is changing, responding to the shifts in power. As Pluto returns in the next seven years the U.S. identity will die and transform. It’s already begun. If you weren’t convinced before that the premise of the United States was a lie, there is now enough evidence that it can’t be argued. Too many have been barred and blocked from their unalienable rights. Too many are imprisoned. Too many have too little agency in their own lives, not to mention pursuit of happiness. The dream of individualism and capitalist glory is dying. Yes it’s putting up a good and ugly fight. But it will not win. There aren’t the resources for it to win. There isn’t the spirit for it to win. We may reach even further into dystopia, but this is a dream that’s been done for a long time.

This isn't the only story though, and definitely not the most important. Capricorn is also the sign of Earth Wisdom. It is the sign of the grandparents, the ancestors and the depth of our memories. As the opposite sign of Cancer, Capricorn provides the containment and boundaries we need to feel safe at home and supported to grow. One way to think about this polarity is as the parents. Cancer embodies the nurturer, Capricorn the protector. We need both and can be both, and in both we need to be wise, judicious and mature. 

It seems to me that currently much of the Western world is having a parental crisis. We feel abandoned and cut off from the great mother and source of nourishment. We are stuck between a rock and a hard place trying to constantly prove our value and worth to a patriarch that's been consumed by his own greed. I think we can change the story, though that will depend on each of us wanting to tell ourselves something new.

This is a full moon to reflect upon the structures we have been handed and have had a hand in building. This is a full moon to consider our part in tearing them down and dreaming new ones up. This is a full moon to counter our fear of change with the reality that everything changes, and quickly. This is a full moon to care deeply for the ones we are family with. This is a full moon to recognize how big our families are. This is a full moon to work as hard as we can to be good friends, allies and decent humans. This is a full moon to do the best we can and then a little bit more. Your horoscopes and affirmations (below) reflect the ways you are ready to let something(s) die so that others can be reborn.

Remember, the best any of us can do is respond in the present moment to the needs of our lives unfolding before us. No one of us will be the change, we all will. Let’s work together and do the best we can to appreciate and support each other’s efforts. Stop tearing each other down, criticizing and finding fault. We are all here in this one together.

Capricorn rules the bones, skin, boundaries, age and aging, and the process of becoming wise. This beautiful handmade collage  by Janna .

Capricorn rules the bones, skin, boundaries, age and aging, and the process of becoming wise. This beautiful handmade collage by Janna.

To learn more about this full moon’s astrology and how it might affect you on a personal level listen to my podcast here.

To work consciously and carefully with this moon’s energy practice cultivating healthy boundaries with me in this guided meditation.

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NEW EMBODIED ASTROLOGY CLASSES!     Timing for Creative Projects and Business: Working with planetary cycles and transits    Saturday July 15 2-4PM at Works Progress Agency - 811 E. Burnside St. Ste 124, Portland OR 97214   Whether long-term or short-term, all successful projects follow the same basic path of conception, materialization and dissemination. Not all projects make it through these phases though and sometimes we lose valuable time and energy trying to force something to happen at the wrong times. In this workshop we’ll learn the basics of how to use astrology for timing including: the best times to begin projects, which planets and phases support growth, and which planets and times of cycles to watch for possible challenges and roadblocks.


Timing for Creative Projects and Business: Working with planetary cycles and transits

Saturday July 15 2-4PM
at Works Progress Agency - 811 E. Burnside St. Ste 124, Portland OR 97214

Whether long-term or short-term, all successful projects follow the same basic path of conception, materialization and dissemination. Not all projects make it through these phases though and sometimes we lose valuable time and energy trying to force something to happen at the wrong times. In this workshop we’ll learn the basics of how to use astrology for timing including: the best times to begin projects, which planets and phases support growth, and which planets and times of cycles to watch for possible challenges and roadblocks.

Adult education theories suggest that we learn the most in moments when we’re challenged, slightly uncomfortable, and basically safe. In these moments we might feel awkward, potentially extremely so… But in general these experiences allow us to learn something about how to facilitate our own comfort and take control of our emotions. When we’re able to push through our own resistance we get to know our own strength and capacities, and potentially to be surprised and delighted by what we find on the other side.

In order for you to take a chance, step outside of what’s known and familiar, separate from what coddles you and move into your own courage, you also need to know what gives you comfort, makes you feel safe and seen, and nurtures you when you feel fragile. You need to know what you can depend on, and you need to trust that there’s support for you to move away from your dependencies.

This is a full moon to practice the balance between comfort and discomfort. This is a full moon to appreciate where you’ve come from in such a way that you can bring its best gifts with you when you go. This is a full moon to love up the ones who love you back and celebrate them for the ways that they push you to become more of who you’ll be.

May you find that you’re easily flexible yet also focused. May you be steady in your determination and still open to suggestion. May you bravely turn towards what is unknown with all who have known and loved you cheering you from behind. May you fully trust the strength of your own willingness to change. Your full moon affirmation is, “The future is inevitable and I am brave.”

There are countless tales of students tested by their teachers. Paradox, trial, obstacle and riddle. The teachings usually point to the fragility of ego. The students who are certain of their own prowess fail to see that the point is not the end goal, but who is helped on the way. The beggar has something to give, the old woman knows a secret, the wounded animal is hiding a clue.

Don’t let yourself be overcome by your own ambition. If you’re not abiding in beginner’s mind your ego will keep you from learning and enjoying. That said, your mind is sharp right now and you are ready to make some choices. Before you make them take time to question your intent. Be sure that the guidance you’re following is coming from a place you trust. You’ll know it’s trust when the feeling is absolutely comfortable within. When you’re certain that you’re not lying to yourself. When you know that it’s not about whether you can come home later, but rather that you reside there always regardless of how far you go.

Power struggles and battles with authority will only increase the harder and more determined to convince you become. Being open to questions shows others that you’re perceptive and gives you the space to be graceful in a world where hard and fast answers are only a myth. Consider that you can practice mental Aikido – use the force that’s directed towards you to turn momentum into fluidity and dance.

Your full moon affirmation is, “Every moment is a learning moment, and my sense of humor is my best ally."

This is a full moon to practice full-on self confidence. Let’s begin with an inventory check list. Please write down all the things you love about yourself, all the ways that you do good in the world, all the things you know you mean to others, and everything you know you’re good at. I mean it. Do it. Now.

Yes I know it’s awkward and potentially terrifying. What if you can’t find anything to put on the list? What if somewhere inside you suspects it’s bunk and you’re just making it up? What if you’re just confused and wrong?

Yes I know it’s embarrassing. Who makes lists of what they like about themselves? Shouldn’t you be making lists of all there is to do? Shouldn’t you be making lists of what you’re grateful for? Shouldn’t you be spending your time on something that’s actually important? How could this be important anyway?

I’m going to tell you that it is important, very much so, for you to pause and praise the one who’s with you always. You are your only lifelong companion my friend, so better be a friend to yourself. Better be appreciative and enthusiastic. Because if you let the insecurities grow inside instead, then being with you is going to be a lot harder than it needs to be… for you, and for anyone else.

You have a lot. And you have a lot to give. Whatever you’ve been trying to figure out creatively, and all the ways you’ve been pushing yourself to enjoy your life and branch out more will be served by an ample dose of self worth. Additionally, you’ll probably find that contrary to popular opinion, solid self-worth makes you more accountable to your commitments because you make them from a place of inner stability. The ability to see and appreciate who and how you are means that you’ll be much less distracted by fears of who’s judging or how you should be, and therefore you’ll be able to appreciate the people actually around you. Finally, giving yourself appreciation means that you know what it feels like, and that’s honestly what you should expect from the ones who are the closest to you. Please write your own full moon affirmation this month beginning with, “I love myself because…”

The last few weeks have probably been a potent, possibly intense time of transformation and growth. The ways you are being asked to accommodate and adjust in your relationships and expectations are by no means simple, and perhaps not easy at all. The ways that you navigate stability and balance might seem at times excessive or deficient. And in all of this there is the question as to what you are tethered to internally… who is the you that you come back to? How do you know yourself and what do you stand for?

Important things to notice right now are the ways that you seek to define permanence. Do you ask for promises? If so then where does that leave you? Is commitment contained in words or is it something less obvious and more energetic. Notice if you’re grasping at something that continues to be out of reach. What would happen if you stopped reaching, settled back into yourself and trusted that whatever you need will come when it’s ready?

There is a certain kind of emptiness that only arises when we confront the fact that we can’t change anything or anyone else. This particular space often has the sensation of total quiet and vast calm. It usually doesn’t last, but can infuse our beings with deep support and willingness to accept what we’ve known for a long time. It may be that a moment like this arrives in the next few weeks. It could be towards a project, partner or any number of things… but whatever it is it feels structural, foundational and old. This is something you’ve been working with for a long time.

I hope that you will hear yourself clear and confident. I hope that you will trust what you hear and listen deeper. I hope that you easily see past the fear that would keep you gripped. I hope that what you see is the power of evolution when it’s allowed to move forward. Your full moon affirmation is, “I am courageous and loved.”

These last few weeks have brought some big energy into your psychic space. Have you been listening? Perhaps your ancestors are close by and offering you advice. Are you receptive? You’re available for a different kind of sensitivity that floats between worlds and words. Do you feel it?

Trusting your intuition is a lesson you’re learning now. If you’re not caught up planning and micromanaging there’s more space to be inspired. Let it happen friend. Let the guidance come in and don’t get in its way by thinking that you know better.

The next month will bring more powerful energy into your chart. With a heavy hitter of an eclipse at the end of the month, close to the north node of the moon, you’re en route to being (re)routed in some major ways. It’s best for you if you let it come and don’t worry about whether or not it falls in line with your plans. Remember that plans can be adjusted more easily when you’re adjustable.

Some tips for you are these: Be generous and graceful with your words. Appreciate others and let them know how you do. Speak as eloquently as you can. Be curious and create space for knowing by asking questions. Listen. Speak only what you mean, because the words you use will form the expectations of others, including those you might not even know are listening.

Your full moon affirmation is, “I go with the glow.”

When most people say “creativity”, most people hear “art”… painting, drawing, music etc. There are kinds of people and projects we all call creative, which distinguish them from what is not. It’s too bad really, that we’ve developed these boxes and strict definitions around what is life energy itself.

When most people “sexuality”, most people hear “sex”... the act of it, the desire of it, the promise of it. There are kinds of people and activities we equate with sexuality, which distinguish them from what is not. It’s too bad really, that we’ve developed these boxes and strict definitions around what is life energy itself.

This is a moon for you to connect with what is most basic, most instinctual, most intrinsic to who and what you are as a human being. The ability to be creative, in whatever forms it takes, and to feel desire to create, in whatever ways you do. The knowing of yourself as a body that contains the longing and capacity to merge with inspiration, to birth something into the world… children and art being some possibilities – but ideas, gestures, movements, businesses, friendships, and any number of other “things” you might have a hand in creating are just as special and magic.

These next few weeks give you access to the deep and potent magic that takes life and transforms it into life. Call it what you will, but don’t stifle its potential by pretending it doesn’t exist everywhere and in everyone. The more you let yourself be overwhelmed by the innate lustiness of your being and everything around you, the less you need to worry about who has it or who doesn’t. Your full moon affirmation is, “Life is art.”

Make altars to your compost bucket and your toilet. Worship worms and ask for their assistance. Find a tree that has died and spend some time with it every day. Put up pictures of your ancestors and family who have passed on and then do visualizations of their bodies dispersing back into dust.

Giving thanks to what has decayed or is in the process of decaying feels strange. It’s certainly a bit edgy for most, if not totally terrifying. But that’s because here, in ‘the developed world’ we live in cultures that have been divorced from death. We pretend it doesn’t exist. We preserve our temporary bodies and then put fiberglass and shellacked boxes around them to bury. We use scented toilet paper and pretend it’s somehow civilized to shit in our water. We hide old people. We medicate for decades and cling to lives that only barely exist.

Your current astrology is saying something about the life process. It’s pointing to the fact that in order to live and grow, there also needs to be death and transformation. What you are moving towards feels like a new kind of leadership and/or life path– full of heart and deeply loving. But to completely embody that wonderful space means also contending with its end, and the ending of everything else eventually too.

Presence is one of life’s great paradoxes for our species. Loving the moment you’re in simply for the sake of living in it might seem like too simple a task, not driven or ambitious enough. Honestly though, it’s impossible to take the light without the dark. It’s not only impossible, it’s incredibly foolish. Until we remember how to honor mystery, endings and the unknown, this living world will continue to perpetuate death in totally disconnected, completely destructive ways. Consider that your practice now is nothing less than healing the primary cause of our human misery – basically, the denial of what makes us human. Your full moon affirmation is, “Everything is born. Everything dies. Everything changes.”

Linguistics is fascinating! If you’ve never spent time considering the feeling of different languages or phrasings I definitely recommend you take it up as a practice. For example, recently I’ve been experimenting with shifting the wording of language when I express emotions. Rather than saying something like, “I’m angry,” I’ve been interested in using ‘have’ instead of ‘am’ as the auxiliary verb… “I have anger.” This kind of phrasing might feel awkward in my mouth, but energetically it feels like I get to be the owner of the anger instead of its helpless victim. It allows me to think about it as something I have choice in, rather than something I just am.

The shift of language, as it enters your thoughts and exits your mouth, is something you’ve probably been considering for a while now. This full moon in particular is drawing attention to your communication and learning habits. For some of you it might feel like a significant test. Can you say the things you need to say without saying things that you want to take back later? Can you be honest with yourself in your thoughts and also use your mind to promote more personal contentment and less dwelling in dark places?
The discipline of adjusting your thinking is not an overnight process. It’s years. It’s decades. It’s lifetimes. To move from the sensation that life happens to you, into the sensation of being an active participant and conductor of your experience is a radical shift that requires a complete reframing of perspective and refusal to comply with consumer mentality. It takes courage. It takes determination. It takes enough of feeling fed up until you realize that there actually is no other choice. Your full moon affirmation is, “I am the master of my own experience.”

The things we learn as children tend to be both the most important, and the most challenging lessons. These basic ethics (don’t lie, don’t steal, don’t hurt others) are puzzles that we’ll spend our entire lives trying to comprehend… hopefully. When we stop asking ourselves where our ethics are we start to get into serious trouble. When we take the simplest lessons for granted we set ourselves up for the hardest punishments.

Right now there’s something in your chart that compels me to bring this up – particularly in regards to ownership. The mandates of non-stealing and/or sharing both jump out at me immediately.

Without knowing exactly what I’m referring to, this is the basic gist. Share what you have but share it wisely. There’s a difference between being stingy and taking care of your future. There’s also a difference between giving freely and giving with strings attached. If you’re giving something that has a lot of value, please take the time to check in with yourself first and make sure that when you give it’s with a clear and joyful heart… and, practice giving with a clear and joyful heart.

Don’t take what isn’t given freely. If you feel that something is being offered to you that carries more debt than it’s worth, pass on by. Wise choices often feel hard in the moments we make them, but the immediate feeling thereafter is usually lightness and relief. Listen to those feelings. And… practice honest gratitude for what is being given to you. A sincere “thank you” and appreciation for what’s been given is the reason most of us want to give in the first place. Help your loved ones feel good about their giving by being receptive to what they give.

Ultimately, the more each of us as individuals can practice honesty, contentment and non-harming, the more we’ll see it reflected in the places that matter. Like employers, bankers and those who design policy and legislation. Your full moon affirmation is, “I treat others as I wish to be treated.”

It’s easy to displace ourselves on others, especially the ones we love. It’s easy to lose ourselves in the imagination of who we could be, and just as easy to forget who we are when we’re focused on defending who we think we have been, or ought to be. It’s easy to place the emphasis on You, harder to see sometimes that there is nothing here without Me.

This full moon brings all your relationships home. It opens you up to feel the ones you’ve felt before as separate, but who’ve been so important that now their influence is inseparable from your identity. This full moon asks you to make more room in your heart for those who’ve been shut out. This full moon asks you to clarify your mind, and disentangle from those whose influence has been less than loving.

Pay attention to anger and desire. You have much to learn from both these teachers. Investigate the qualities of anger that are appropriate and healthy – that alert you to danger, that inform you of the need for caution, that clarify a stance. Welcome the ways that desire opens and awakens your body and expands your notions of who you can be.

Notice also how anger seeks to separate and desire seeks to own. Choose whether you’ll use these influences to get closer to who you are at the core of your being, or whether these influences will use you towards more destructive ends.

Most important, don’t let yourself be fooled into thinking that anyone else is responsible for your reactions, sensations or experiences. You are a free person. You can choose who you love and how close you get. You can choose which elements of your conditioning to identify with and which you’d like to move on from. The more responsibility you take for yourself, the more able to respond appropriately you will be. Your full moon affirmation is, “The only things I take personally are my own choices.”

The difference between blind faith and discernment has something to do with history. Blind faith is willingness to step forward into the unknown with no reason to expect success or support. It’s putting stock in something because you want to believe it has an answer, but it’s not based on anything more than desire or hope, and it certainly is no guarantee that an answer, or your hoped-for outcome will be found.

Discernment on the other hand, takes into account some of what you know already. It might not know that the venture is a safe bet, but it knows how to examine the precedents, and whose voices are coming from wisdom rather than lust or manipulation. Discernment requires a suspension of craving. It builds the self-reflection you need in order to step outside your immediate desire and see the thing for what it is rather than what you want it to be.

There is some element of your spiritual growth that right now requires you to let go of everything you know and trust something that is entirely unknown. On the other hand, now is the time to build upon what you know, specifically, the ways you’ve been learning to take care of yourself and the details of your life.

The coming weeks will be a balance between blind faith and discernment. Because you need them both. So practice taking small steps into the unknown. Take some risks by feeling what you’ve held at bay, and letting yourself open up to what’s been bordered and bound in the psychic planes. And then practice discernment and objectivity by listening to your instincts and emotions in new ways. The time right now is ripe for learning new habits and taking calculated risks. Your full moon affirmation is, “I open to new perspectives.”

The astrology of right now has something to say about your fear of the future. It has something to say about the ways you’re willing to extend trust, or how you’ll get caught in self-preservation. The astrology of right now is a pivot point. Shall we go forward or stay right here? There is no guarantee that the future will bring what you think you’ve planned for. But worse is to sit still while your desires stagnate. If the motivation is here… follow it.

Remember that good company and the right friends make the journey entertaining. Remember that laughing and playing on your way makes the unknown exciting. Remember that art, music and dance make sense of the senseless. Remember that no one knows any more than you do.

Continue to develop through pushing yourself into newness. Be mindful of the ways you seek to control others or get caught up in mistrusting their power or intent. Instead, consider how you can push yourself to be braver, bolder and more aligned to your own truth. If you know what you stand for, it will be that much harder for anyone else to push you over.

If you’re scared, get creative. Turn to face your demons and let them inspire art. Externalize your aggression in ways that allow you to see it rather than react to it. Understand the power of your own intensity. Eventually, you might see that much of what you fear in others is what is still unrealized in yourself.

The more you can embrace and own up to your own instincts, the less you need to hold their inevitability at bay. The ways you learn to lovingly press into your own discomfort will teach you something about making space for care and calm. Your full moon affirmation is, “There is no control, only honest gestures. I am responsible for what I express and create.”