Urania's Well: Astrology for Changing Times

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Balancing Change: New Moon Eclipse and Spring Equinox

Posted by on in Culture Blogs

A fanab2ap3_thumbnail_cherry-blossoms-on-stone.jpgtic is one who can't change his mind and won't change the subject. ~ Winston Churchill

We have two significant events happening on March 20th — first, a New Moon in Pisces at 5:36 am EDT, followed immediately by a solar eclipse. Then, that evening at 6:46, the Sun moves into Aries for the Spring Equinox. Both these charts will be in effect for at least 3 to 6 months, and I have cast them for Washington, DC, so they are predictive for the country. Find the charts here and here.

This planetary combination is a recipe for change and new beginnings in this season of the balance between light and dark. We’ll want to get very clear about our intentions for our lives and our world, because the energy we set in motion on this day is likely to be powerful and long lasting. Should you work magic during this time? Of course! It could be argued that a magician is always working magic. But it is definitely a good idea to carefully consider where and how you are directing your magic, and also to know that with volatile energies like these, you may not get the results you expected, particularly if you work at the eclipse. Magic done at an eclipse tends to always have a wild card somewhere in the mix. I’d advise working with the eclipse energy only if your personal magical practice is relatively disciplined, you are well-tuned-in to the flow of energy in your life, and you can be flexible about the results. If this isn’t you, then you might want to work in the evening, at or after the equinox, when the Moon and Sun are trine Saturn, and the Moon is trine Jupiter.

Let’s look at what insight we can gain from these two charts, and the opportunities and challenges we’ll want to watch for in the months ahead. The New Moon chart has a prominent religious/spiritual/philosophical focus, a strong suggestion of established dogma at odds with personal gnosis, and suggestions of a populace that is more than ready to do battle over religious, philosophical and legal principles. Opinions will be freely offered and conflicting opinions are likely to lead to outright conflict. Yes, you might want to give some thought to how best to deal with people who want to force their opinions/religions/laws on you, because the fanatics are not likely to shut up anytime soon. We’ll see this in the public sphere, and also in our own lives.

Between stimulus and response there is a space. In that space is our power to choose our response. In our response lies our growth and our freedom. ~ Viktor E. Frankl

It is worth considering how people’s opinions actually do change, because there is a clear need in our world for the kind of transformation that comes only with widespread shifts of public opinion. Certainly those who try to sell us various things we don’t need have paid very close attention to what makes change happen in the human mind — it would behoove us to pay some attention to that process as well. One thing we can be fairly sure of is that angry, accusatory communication changes nothing but the temperature. When people get fingers pointed at them, when they are "called out”, the natural human reaction is to go into a defensive mode. Often other painful emotional issues are triggered as well -- primarily those issues that were imprinted on us in childhood, such as shame, fear, or rejection.

See, the thing about the human brain is that as soon as a threat is perceived, reactive areas of our brains -- those ones that evolved first to ensure survival  -- tend to hijack the entire neurological and physical system to ensure the most efficient and protective response to that stress..  It's not just the physical threat that gets that response, either. We know that social situations can feel equally threatening, and elicit a response that can be as or even more intense than to a physical threat.

No one's brain can function optimally, no one can revise an opinion, no one can make a conscious effort at empathy while their brain is being hijacked by protective, automatic routines that are triggered in response to an awareness of threat. Communicating with someone in any way that makes them feel threatened pretty much ensures a fight-or-flight response. Even if someone is successfully controlling that response, they are going to be fighting a powerful part of their brain that is ringing big bells of fear and defensiveness. Which is why an antagonistic approach will not elicit from that person -- or anyone emotionally-involved in the situation -- any changes in behavior or philosophy. It will simply raise the emotional temperature of the discussion, and ensure that people are in a defensive posture.

If you are the one whose brain is being hijacked, know that it is possible to talk yourself down from this state, once you become aware of it. A meditation practice really helps with this, because you will come to awareness of your reactions faster as you train your mind, and you’ll be able to take a step back, find the space Frankl refers to, and choose a more empowered response.  But be aware that, even so, a whole lot of brain energy will be directed toward controlling the fight or flight response, and you will not be functioning at your best. Defer important decisions when you have been in this state — it takes some time for your neuro-chemistry to settle down, and brain resources to be re-directed.

Unquestionably, inappropriate or hurtful behavior and words need to be addressed -- but not with more hurtful, accusatory words. The key to this New Moon chart is the empathy and connectedness of Pisces. The level of sheer cruelty in the world seems to be increasing exponentially these days, and our ability to empathize and care for each other appears to be waning. This chart lets us know that emotional reconnection is critical to our well-being, and to the future we are creating.

One’s philosophy is not best expressed in words, it is expressed in the choices one makes…and the choices we make are ultimately our responsibility.  ~ Eleanor Roosevelt

The Equinox chart is a fiery one, with six planets in Fire. Air is lacking in this chart, and you might want to notice how you personally are balancing those two Elements in your life over the next few months.  The emotional-intensity meter is reading pretty high here, and your ability to channel the sense of justice and fairness that epitomizes Air will be widely appreciated.  We also have some  flowing energy supporting the rigorous application of law, philosophy, and religion to emotionally intense situations, but that flowing energy is not necessarily beneficial — it can simply make it easier for the dogma police to exert control.  The possibility of emotional eruptions is high — and physical ones as well. Strong volcanic activity is definitely a possibility during this time. There are more than a few indicators of conflict in this chart, and you might want to consider if and how you may be able to act as a peacekeeper in your life and in your community, to help in preventing, or constructively managing conflict.

The way to handle these next few months is through discernment, expanded awareness, caring communication and constructive action. While these two charts undoubtedly have challenges that will prove to be the proverbial two-by-four upside the head for many, most of you reading this will have active magical or spiritual practices that will help you shift this energy towards more creative, beneficial, and actively spiritual manifestations. There are strong indicators of inspiration, breakthroughs (especially scientific/technological ones) and emotional awakenings.

How these energies manifest in your life depends on your natal chart, the itinerary of your soul. If you’d like to get some insight into the challenges and opportunities these planetary alignments offer specifically to you, contact me to set up an appointment for a consultation.

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Diotima Mantineia began studying astrology in 1968, taking classes from Zoltan Mason in New York City. For the next 22 years, she practiced astrology only for herself and her friends, continuing her studies while watching an increasingly humanistic, psychologically oriented, modern astrology blossom through the work of leading astrologers such as Noel Tyl, Liz Greene, Rob Hand, Marion March, Stephen Arroyo and Howard Sasportas. In 1986, Diotima began her study of Wicca and started reading Tarot, discovering that she is a gifted intuitive. In 1991, she began practicing both astrology and Tarot professionally. She majored in plant and soil science both in college and grad school, and grows much of her own food and "materia magica" on her land in the mountains of western North Carolina. Diotima’s personal spiritual path is rooted in the Western mystery traditions, the principles of Yoga, and a profound connection with the natural world. Wicca gives structure to her spiritual journey, and she utilizes shamanic practices for healing and to live in harmony with Nature. Over 15 years of studying Chinese martial arts has given her a deep appreciation of Taoist thought which has strongly influenced her magical and personal philosophy. You can find her at www.uraniaswell.com


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