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Possibilities—New Moon Aquarius—January 21st.

I felt like some watcher in the skies when a new planet swims into his ken—John Keats.

It wasn’t a new planet that swam into the skies over sodden California this week. A rapturous tweet from the NWS announced, “it’s the Sun!” A sign of hope, after nine deadly “whiplash” storms upended homes and trees, ripped power lines, pitched viscous rivers of mud down hillsides.

This first new moon of the year falls in the very first degree of Aquarius and conceals within her darkness the husk of endings. This may manifest quite literally as an ending of a relationship, a job, moving home, or perhaps in a shift of perception that helps us to embrace those unexpected things that upend our carefully laid plans. Pluto, mythic god of the Underworld, infuses this lunation with a sense of endings, in some cases quite literal. For most of us, endings creep up incrementally, a twist in the evolutionary spiral of time.

The Sabian Symbol for this new moon is An Unexpected Thunderstorm, reminding us of “the need to develop the inner security which will enable us to meet unexpected crises,” according to one interpretation by astrologer Dane Rudhyar. And although the moon’s silvery light is swathed in darkness, she makes a hopeful sextile to optimistic Jupiter and a trine to Mars, as we prepare to begin again.

Water or lack thereof will be prominent themes with the zeitgeist awash with watery symbolism in this year of the Chinese Water Rabbit, infusing it with potential for deep healing, fertile new beginnings. Pluto’s entry into the sign of the Water Bearer in late March, and Saturn’s ingress into watery Pisces on March 7th are preceded by a brief period of easy flow.

In the ever-changing skies, Mercury and Mars moved direct this week and Uranus offers a glimpse of possibilities as it stations direct on January 22nd. Mars will begin to move with more steel-tipped precision in March, picking up speed, energising our intentions and our actions.

Pluto’s promissory note, as he sweeps into the fixed air sign of Aquarius on March 23rd may not be glaringly obvious in mid-January, but a change of signs stirs up what came beforethe blunt trauma of toxic patriarchy, the rapacious plunder of the earth, and the wild silence of the death of millions of living things. Pluto dips in and out of Capricorn until November 2024 and then begins a 20-year residence in Aquarius, deepening our understanding of what it is be to human amidst the inexorable spread of human civilization amidst societal collapse and epic climate breakdown. The bloody American and French Revolutions erupted when Pluto moved through Aquarius in the 1700s, and this ingress in March may provide a glimpse of what is yet to come.

Lynne Tripp, author of Living a Committed Life: Finding Freedom and Fulfilment in a Purpose Larger Than Yourself writes, “The greatest threat to creating the future we want is fear, discouragement, and cynicism. It’s easy to be cynical, it’s easy and cheap because it asks nothing of us. Cynicism is like a disease, an infection, and it’s cowardly. What takes courage is to hold a vision and live into it.”

She presents Paul Hawken’s optimistic view that global warming and the breakdown of democracy is happening for us, rather than to us. That within the disastrous endings are the seeds of the transformation of the human condition.

But, we will need more than magical thinking, vision-board manifestation, or the disturbing TikTok’s Lucky Girl syndrome which seductively suggests that we can shape reality and get anything we want, and of course create exactly what we deserve.

These next 20 years will see hierarchical structures of wealth and power fracture. Breakdowns and break-throughs so vast that they may bring a commitment to systemic change that destroys human supremacy and restores the Natural Order to our home planet.

We may not be responsible for the world that created our minds, but we can take responsibility for the mind with which we create our world,” writes Gabor Maté.

Aquarius, like all astrological signs, draws deeply from the minds that created the world millennia ago. For thousands of years, The Water Bearer has been identified with the invigorating waters that bring renewal and hope from Heaven. As we shrug off the cynicism and negativity that disempower us, as we refuse to swim in the negative conversations that pervade the media, a flood of kindness and collaboration may begin to swell.

Aquarius speaks to our instinctual need to bond, to belong. Tonight, we might reflect on the vital nourishment offered by friendship and the precious bonds of belonging that sustain us during difficult times. We may sense something stirring in our soul, a sensitivity to the fault lines of division that thread across the collective, a deep knowing that for as long as this world has existed, we have been inexorably moving to this moment in time. For some of us this might be shifting our focus from thoughts or conversations that keep us stuck in our victim narrative, for others this might be looking for what is working in our lives and shifting the light of our focus on that with appreciation and gratitude.

May our vision for a brave new world flutter with the hopes and dreams of all humankind. May we draw hope, renewal, and spiritual guidance tonight as we gaze up at the heavens, and may we be reminded that we are all connected to each other, and to the stars.

To book your personal astrology session, please connect by email: ingrid@trueheartwork.com

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Reflections—Cancer Full Moon—January 6th.

Now let us welcome the New Year, full of things that have never been—Rainier Maria Rilke.

The first Full Moon of the New Year arrives ripe with possibilities. She rests in the snug encasement of Cancer, a sign that evokes treasured rituals, home comforts, the sweetness of belonging to a loving family or caring community. It’s Christmas in Ukraine tonight. Possibilities and certainty darkened by the scream of sirens and the menace of deadly drones that swoop like raptors from the skies.

January is Capricorn’s month. As we pack away sparkling decorations and prepare to cross the threshold into this next year, we may feel the austere pragmatic presence of Saturn, Capricorn’s ruling planet, we may sense the archaic presence of Janus, the two-headed god as we glance backwards and remember the highlights and the lowlights of 2022, and imagine the blank slate of this year yet to be.

What we conceived of at the darkness of the midwinter Solstice on December 21st may still lie coiled and unformed as we stand at the portal of this brave new year. A sombre Capricorn New Moon on December 23rd, just a few days after the Solstice, reflected the determination of those lives that have been darkened by suffering. Now we have arrived at the fullness of a lunar cycle, a glimpse of hope, a whiff of defiance, on this day of Christmas, this day of Epiphany.

The sky-story for this new year speaks of liminal spaces, slow transitions, small, brave steps. There are no major planetary aspects in 2023 but a tide of cosmic changes that will scatter star dust over all humankind.

Already the days are growing longer and the primroses on the riverbanks turn their delicate yellow faces to the sun as we begin to resume the routines and rituals that ground us in our ordinary lives. As winter’s frosty grip softens, our earth-born bodies respond to the light, new dreams seed themselves in our imagination. Silently, irrevocably, great cycles of birth, life, death, and regeneration are at work. Mars is still Retrograde in Gemini, stationing direct on January 12th, and Mercury turned Retrograde in earthy Capricorn on December 29th, and will be moving direct again on January 18th inviting us to listen more attentively to what feels authentic, to pause in the quiet shade of the unknown before we enter the fray.

We’re on the cusp of a celestial turning point with two major ingresses: Saturn enters Pisces for a period of three years. Pluto enters Aquarius, marking a major shift in the zeitgeist that will colour our world for the next 20 years. As Pluto moves through Aquarius, we will see the axis of power shift from the west to the east, radical changes in society, politics, religion, a growing awareness of the Frankenstein Monster that is Big Tech and AI, a demise in the great myth of progress amidst environmental collapse. Notice events in March which will be prequels to the zeitgeist of the coming decades.

As Jupiter rushes through fiery Aries in the first months of this year, we may feel a heated rush of courage, the faith in ourselves to start something new. Jupiter moves into Taurus on May 16th, and our focus may shift to what we value—money, material possessions, or lack of these will be highlighted, especially when Jupiter unites with the North Node in June, emphasised by Venus moving Retrograde in Leo which will mine the gold of our inner resources. This celestial prompt could be the cornerstone for self-care, sound financial management, creative self-expression, and joy.

Cancer draws us back to our coiled origins in the watery warmth of the womb, to what nurtures and nourishes us deeply.

May the light of this Full Moon offer opportunity to ease in gently to the steady routine of life, to reflect on what nourishes and nurtures our souls, and to what brings comfort and healing to our physical lives. This is the year of living bravely, soulfully, imaginatively, abandoning those things that are irretrievably broken and reimagining our place in the world, rooting back into the earth.

Onwards we go into this brave, beautiful new year.

For a private astrology consultation, please get in touch with me:
ingrid@trueheartwork.com

Stories Written in the Stars: Friday, January 6, 2023 from 10:30 AM to 12:00 PM PST: 6.30 GMT. If you would like to join me tomorrow night for an overview of 2023 which begins with a double Retrograde, please get in touch and I will send you a link, or register and pay here: https://events.r20.constantcontact.com/register/eventReg?oeidk=a07ejjic613b83e1aa4&oseq=&c=&ch=

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Love and War—Gemini Full Moon—December 8th.

Light and shadow are opposite sides of the same coin. We can illuminate our paths or darken our way.

It is a matter of choice—Maya Angelou.

Mars, the ancient war-god, escorts the Moon across brow of the heavens tonight, a celestial reminder of those choices that take us down dark and lonely pathsor paths that sparkle with possibilities. As we prepare for the holidays, this last lunation of the calendar year, arrives in convivial Gemini, a mutable air sign associated with communication, connections, and with the choice we make every time we say something that may land like an arrow in the heart of another.

This full moon marks the climax of the Mars Retrograde cycle. When Mars meets the Moon, our battle for security and safety is not yet over. We may still be grappling with impossible choices, still embroiled in misunderstandings that erode our trust, still aching from a betrayal that armours the ache in our heart. We may have slipped into the habit of expecting a catastrophe, we may find it safer not to hope or dream. We may be wintering, even though the sun is shining.

As the Sun opposes the Moon and Mars tonight, a restless and confusing T-square with Neptune offers a choice, aided by a sextile with practical Saturn. Raising our glasses to the year almost gone, may we listen deeply to what is said around the dinner table, sensing a heart ache or a longing that may be concealed in an emotionally charged silence, and make our choice. We can’t avoid winter’s darkness, yet the Sun’s passage through hope-filled Sagittarius is a reminder that we may have become too rigid in our opinions, too wrapped up in anticipatory anxiety to dare to trust and hope. Says grief mentor, Julia Samuel, “hope is a feeling, but it’s also a plan.” We are living in anxiety-inducing times. Amidst the rubble of war, families are fractured, lovers separated by choice or by necessity; millions are exiled from their homelands. Mothers, fathers, teachers, store owners, are now simply refugees.

Through Gemini we encounter the power of two and the archetype of the sibling, the power of the pair to shelter one another during the fallow times when we are frozen and disheartened. The choice to make a new plan.

The numinous image of the Twins is mirrored by the Lovers card in Tarot, depicting the awakening of a partnership of equality. Also, the strands of individuality, separation, and loss that are woven into love knots. In the round of the Zodiac, this is the first meeting with the Other, the Twin Soul.

Like so many stories steeped in patriarchy and dominion, that form the bedrock of our civilization, the enduring stories of twins, siblings and soulmates are threaded with the pathos of loss and separation, woven with duality and ambiguity. Beneath the popular astrological descriptions of the breeziness of Gemini, the fun-loving and fickle eternal child, lies a story of loss and longing, a life-long search for something or someone from which we feel separated. A story that’s so often punctuated with long stretches of aloneness. A story that stumbles into the sinkhole misunderstanding. A story that ends with nothing more left to say.

Sibling stories underline Rome’s foundation myth and draw us into the story arcs of fiction and movies like Shakespeare’s Hamlet and A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Ian McEwan’s Atonement, SK Tremayne’s chilling story about the death of a twin, The Ice Twins, and the marvellous Harry Potter books. Gemini is also the sibling we love or loathe, the bonds of blood that bind or divide. The Swimmers (Netflix 2022) is a Gemini story that marries the light and the darkness of two young sisters, Sara and Yusra, who escape the trauma of the war in Syria in a leaking boat, hoping to be reunited with their family. Theirs is a story of sexual assault by a trafficker, soulless immigration queues, barren refugee detention centres, and the triumph of being selected to compete in the Rio Olympics of 2016.

Twins in myth and fairy tale, are similar at first glance, then reveal themselves to be fundamentally different. The story of Castor and Pollux, and their beautiful twin sisters, Helen and Clytemnestra is a brutal story of theft and revenge, kidnapping, murder, and loss. Maya Angelou once said, “I don’t believe an accident of birth makes people sisters or brothers. It makes them siblings, gives them mutuality of parentage. Sisterhood and brotherhood is a condition people have to work at.”

This month, Mercury-ruled Gemini appears as the winged messenger, delivering choices which are seldom packaged in black and white, choices that arrive on the restless wind and arc through the air like the ideas that tumble through our minds. It is in the light and the dark of our relationships that we encounter our human complexity and discover the light and the dark within us.

May the winged sandals of Mercury carry us towards those extra-ordinary encounters that bring everything into focus. May the mythic Twins preside over those soulful tugs of choice, careful planning, that herald radical change in the way we live and the way we love.

 If you would like to book a personal astrology session for 2023, please get in touch: ingrid@trueheartwork.com

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Waking the Dead—New Scorpio Moon and Solar Eclipse—October 25th.

October is the month of the dead. This is the time when the veil between the worlds is thinnest. This is the time of the ancient festival of Samhain when we remember those who have gone before us, when we confront inevitable endings and that great taboo. DEATH.

In October, leaves of gold turn to mulch. Shimmering spiderwebs sparkle in coppery hedgerows. In October, Death is monetised. Brightened, kept at bay with a parody of plastic costumes and grotesque face paint destined for land fill.

“Endings seem to lie in wait” wrote the mystic and poet, John O’Donohue who died as he slept in the January of 2008. Endings lie in wait in those ordinary instants, those unremarkable moments when quite suddenly, life as we knew it is over, our security, sameness, ruthlessly snatched away.

Spectral plumes of mist curl from rust-coloured forests and from the hilltops the plaintive roars of the rutting red deer promise new life and the ambush of death this month. As the Sun moves through Scorpio now, we enter the reflective depths and we think about endings. Many of us may be sitting with uncertainty, painfully paring away those things that no longer serve us. We may feel scooped out, dead inside, the vestiges of a long illness still lodged in our bones. Endings come with the loss of our identity when we retire; with the changes in our body as we age, our brave beauty etched in our faces, our strength shining through our eyes. Endings so often strip us of our innocence. They come in the brutal betrayal that spills diamonds and rust from the forgotten places in our heart. “You sit down to dinner and life as you know it, ends,” wrote Joan Didion.

On the eve of a new Scorpio Moon on October 25th, Sun and Moon hold a séance with Venus in regenerative Scorpio, accenting the cartography of our heart. This eclipse amplifies the finality of endings; fertilises a new cycle of growth with the dust of demolition. Tonight, we come back to what we deeply value. And what we must discard or choose to keep. A solar eclipse is a high-voltage new moon, and a new moon encapsulates the seed of a new beginning, a new shaping of our expectations, though we may not be able to see just what they are until the Moon is ripe and full. And as this new moon travels between the Earth and the Sun, darkening the Sun’s brilliance, something, someone may be eclipsed. This symbolism is made all the more poignant in a culture where the brilliance of externalised power and earthly matters command the spotlight in 24-hour news loops and on social media. The essence of eclipses lingers like an expensive perfume, for two weeks before and after the eclipse. They act as celestial highlighters, amplifying, intensifying energy and they can be game changers.

As the UK Tory party faces yet another crisis, transiting Uranus symbolises the unexpected changes in political fortunes—“I’m a fighter, not a quitter,” said Liz Truss before being routed within a day. Uranus was moving over Mars in her birth chart. As I write, Boris Johnson gains the necessary 100 MP nominations for the leadership, then pulls as transiting Venus conjoins his Moon. Uranus conjoins and Saturn squares Rushi Sunak’s Mercury/Sun conjunction in Taurus. Will he become prime minister or could Boris volte face again and return as PM to dismember the Tory party?

The darkly brooding presence of Pluto, Scorpio’s modern ruler, casts a long shadow over the month of October in world events, perhaps in our own lives with news that has reminded us of the impermanence of this life. Pluto stationed direct on October 8th and the heightened effect may have lingered for a week before and afterwards in our own lives, most certainly in world events. There is a quality of the absolute that lingers and settles over us all now and presses its hard edges into our daily lives. Writes Joan Didion, “It’s easy to see the beginnings of things, and harder to see the ends.” Something bigger than us, something fated, is at work.

We may remember that for the ancient Greeks, Fate came in the form of three Moirai, those three sisters who determined the Fate of every living creature. It was Atropos who cut the thin thread of life. We meet Fate when the Nodes of the Moon transit the planets or angles of our birth chart. The South Node draws us back, into the undertow of the past; we hesitate at the threshold, we circle endlessly in our place of discomfort. The North Node is where we see the diamond of our destiny, although the threshold crossing is never easy. Something is calling us to our purpose, our ability as a race to love and heal and to nurture one another and all creatures great and small.

Jupiter slips back into diffuse Pisces on October 28th and will tread water at 29° till November 12th, drawing us collectively and personally into the shape-shifting realm of water that washes and dissolves the structures of life. Jupiter represents our search for meaning, faith and hope, yet also accompanies bloated optimism, grandiosity, and greed. Jupiter moved through this degree point in early May 2022 as Mariupol was besieged and the divisive issue of abortion escalated. Scorpio is a feminine sign, and paradoxically ruled by testosterone-driven Mars. With Scorpio there can be no compromises. Death, darkness, trans-formation, may be unfolding themes in our lives this month and in our collective future “Light thinks it travels faster than anything, but it is wrong. No matter how fast light travels, it finds the darkness has always got there first, and is waiting for it” writes Terry Pratchett, in Reaper Man.

 Mars, the war god is moving wearily through the heavens now. We may need more rest, more space to sit with painful emotions. Mars stations Retrograde on October 30th, and the battle out there may be an inner battle with the simmering heat of our rage; with our thwarted desires, with our view of the world that is predisposed to battle. “We have not yet arrived, but every point at which we stop requires a re-definition of our destination,” writes poet, Ben Okri, in Tales of Freedom.

As Nature contracts, exposing an uncompromising knot-work of bare branches and stubble fields; as the primordial pulse of the year stirs deep in our blood and bones, we might sense a slow, steady certainty moving through our body. This lunation carries the seed for repair, for release and renewal, if we trust the instruction of our hearts and know that death, like birth, is both an ending and a beginning. As we pause awhile, in this world of dying things, may those dead places in ourselves open to Love in new and deeper ways.

 Please get in touch if you would like an astrology reading:  ingrid@trueheartwork.com

 

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Midsummer Moonlight Magic—Supermoon⁠—June 14th

Do you bow your head when you pray or do you look up into that blue space?
Take your choice, prayers fly from all directions
—Mary Oliver.

June arrives, blue skies, mauve fields of lacy phacelia, an excess of light that shimmers, bright and strange.

Things are not all they seem at Midsummer when we’re drunk with heat and dazed by light. Some say that the veil between the worlds is thin as we approach the Midsummer Solstice. That faery folk make mischief in the shadows, especially when the world is awash with golden moonlight. Tonight, there is magic everywhere as the Moon nudges close to our earth, appearing bigger, brighter than usual.

In 1979, American astrologer, Richard Nolle, named this moon which glows in the slow sunset, Supermoon. We’ve borrowed the name “Strawberry Moon” from first nation people who gathered wild strawberries and other early fruit at this time of midsummer celebration and abundance.

This so-called Supermoon is moving through the sign of Sagittarius, a sign ruled by jovial Jupiter, hedonistic, entitled King of the gods in Roman mythology. In the language of astrology, Jupiter is often simplistically described as bringing “good luck”. Yet “good luck” is as ephemeral as happiness, as fleeting as our attention. We invoke the buoyancy and resilience of Jupiter when we keep the faith, when we dare to hope even when we’re standing in the lengthening shadows. Jupiter may be the silver lining in the dark clouds of circumstance.

Full Moons can accompany enchantments, or wreak havoc in the lives of foolish mortals. This  Full Moon is veiled by a square to enigmatic Neptune in dreamy Pisces, signifying moonlight-infused magic, but also, as Shakespeare so beautifully described in A Midsummer Night’s Dream, a siren song that brings confusion, misunderstanding and a dream-like quality to our ordinary lives. An over-heated Mars in Aries collides brutishly with Chiron (archetype of the Wounded Healer) on the day of the Full Moon, a complex symbol that speaks of wounded warriors, a Fisher King wounded in the groin. Chiron wounds can’t be cured or fixed. This lunation speaks to the  ongoing carnage in war-torn Ukraine, the limitations of our leaders, those hollow, wounded men who wound others. Disruptive Uranus edges closer to the North Node in Taurus this month, highlighting the polarising square to Saturn (Saturn is moving Retrograde until October 23rd) as the old order clings tenaciously the vestiges of power-over. Boris Johnson, who attended Eton College and read Classics at Oxford, ought to know that the gods are fickle and never benign. Still arrogantly presiding over a fragmented kingdom, the British Prime Minister celebrates his birthday on June 19th, as Neptune draws every closer to square his loquacious Gemini Sun and Venus. The man who would be king of the world may yet recall that wrathful gods destroyed those mortals who transgressed their limits; that hubris was the greatest offence of all.

The Sun arrives in Cancer on June 21st, the day of the Midsummer Solstice as the fires and the joyous gatherings in places like Stonehenge mingle with formalised feasts in celebration of St John. Bonfires are kindled, vestiges of magical protection to ward off evil, herbs infused with healing faery charms are gathered from the hedgerows to enhance the flames. The eating and drinking and merry-making lasts as the light lingers.

When the first stars shimmer like sequins against the mauves and corals of the heavens and the flames burn low, some may sense an ancient dread that infuses this still point in the year. A primal helplessness against those things we cannot tame or control as the days grow shorter and winter comes again.

Venus begins a new cycle on June 23rd, joining Mercury in Gemini, accompanying us on our journey through days that may draw us away from rigid routine, offer tantalising possibilities to think, relate, differently. The tide turns on June 28th as Neptune goes direct again (25° Pisces) heightening our intuition, drawing us back to our spiritual centre.

This month of June, may we release our prayers from all directions, allow grace and gratitude to wash over us as we savour the magic of Midsummer.

May you experience each day as a sacred gift woven around the heart of wonder—John O’Donohue.

To book an astrology appointment please get in touch: ingrid@trueheartwork.com

 

 

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Double-Edged Swords—New Gemini Moon—May 30th

Buddhist monk, Haemin Sunim once asked, “When everything around me is moving so fast, I stop and ask, is it the world that’s busy, or is it my mind?”

The Sun and the Moon in changeable Gemini join in the skies tonight. New Moons are dark times and Gemini signifies both radiant light and unfathomable darkness. In a world that certainly does seem to be moving so fast, we may need to pause today to try to take it all in.

Mercurial Gemini is as changeable as the wind, as restless as our minds that dart and dance; as active as our imagination. Imagination is what we may need now in the darkness of this New Moon, as capricious Gemini escorts us into the month of June and Putin’s imperial aspirations reset the world order.

The double-edged sword suit in the Tarot signifies the logos of the intellect represented by the air signs. Gemini is the great communicator, and Mercury-ruled Gemini communicates with words that wound through arrogance or ignorance, or words that heal and unite. At this New Moon we become aware of the power of our words, the consequences of our choices.

Mercury has been moving Retrograde since May 11th and turns direct on June 3rd. The two weeks before, and after, retrograde happens is considered the shadow period when Mercury is still reflective, urging us to slow down, reconsider, shift perception, try another way through. Astrology is not reductive, yet sometime the symbolism can be interpreted quite literally. Mercury encompasses trade and transport, quite literally, airlines cancelled flights at short notice during this Retrograde cycle. Mercury Retrograde times are not ideal for political elections, yet Labour Anthony Albanese’s (Pisces Sun and possible Moon in Gemini depending on his birth time) retrograde influenced, drawn out victory may signify Australia (the world’s third biggest exporter of fossil fuels) acting on renewable energy. The Retrograde cycle of Mercury occurs three times every year and moves through the elements of fire, air, earth and water, in a procession across the zodiac, alerting us the rhythm of inner reflection that is needed for a more conscious experience of living. “Words are like cloths, with which one dresses the world,” writes James Krüss. In these Mercury Retrograde cycles, our perceptions may shift, igniting the creative process, birthing brilliant ideas. Mercury’s realm is magical trans-formation. He was the god of cross-roads and times of transition. Mercury was the only god who travelled back and forth from the Underworld, which in modern times can be interpreted as the unconscious.

Retrograde Mercury squares Saturn as May hurries to an end. Saturn is often connected with the law of karma and Mercury is about our perception. When these two energies combine in the heavens we return to the inner sanctum of our thoughts, that very private, personal space where linear time dissolves. We may feel a sense of moving through treacle, sucked down by obstacles when everything around us is moving so fast as Saturn and Mercury meet in molten evening skies. Yet, there’s a deeper message contained here, said so simply by the poet, Julia de Burgos. “Don’t let the hand you hold hold you down.” The simplicity of this statement may have a resonance for those of us who still hold the hand of an old hurt, a fearful thought, a limiting core belief.

 

The heat is on as Mars (blood lust, war) and Jupiter (inflation, grandiosity) travel in tandem through the skies. Grandiose Jupiter moved into Aries with a heated rush on May 11th, followed by a combustible Moon/Mars conjunction in Aries on May 25th as a gunman released his rage and impotence on 19 school children and two teachers at Robb Elementary school in Texas. This volatile combination of planets symbolises an escalation of conflict in Ukraine, as energy builds for more violent attacks, torture, and kidnapping, as well as the courage and indominable will to survive. Nataliya Gumenyuk, writing in the Guardian, describes how people are placing bouquets of lilac and bunches of daffodils next to every mattress of those who have been sleeping in the Heroiv Pratsi metro station in Kharkiv, for three months.

The ongoing horror of the war in Ukraine now means that grains and oil seeds are scarce; prices are rising, making food rationing in the wealthy west a possibility and famine and mass migration in those countries where people are already living in desperate poverty, a certainty. Ceres, ancient goddess of grain and harvest, is moving through the sign of Cancer (nourishment, safety, comfort, home), reflecting what Gemini poet Federico García Lorca, names as the canto hondo, the deep song of the world. The stage is set for a sequence of astrological aspects that herald unexpected events and an opportunity to stretch and bend with changing circumstances in our lives.

Here, in the north, the earth turns her face to the light. Newly shorn fields shimmer in the sunlight like the glossy coat of a palomino, and the hedgerows are now flushed with fuchsia foxgloves. Between the retraction of Winter or the swelter of Summer, the way forward may not yet be clear. We may have to be still. We may have to wait.

This New Moon may accompany an ending that enfolds an unborn beginning. We may be facing a difficult choice that skewers us in indecision, or a sudden realisation that brings clarity as we shrug off those conditioned beliefs that have threaded through our lives for far too long. Patience and commitment are carelessly tossed aside in the distractions of the times we live in. Yet, spiritual teacher, Eckhart Tolle says simply, “if you find your here and now intolerable and it makes you unhappy, you have three options: remove yourself from the situation, change it, or accept it totally. If you want to take responsibility for your life, you must choose one of those three options, and you must choose now. Then accept the consequences.”

Please get in touch with me if you would like a private astrology reading; ingrid@trueheartwork.com

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Under a Violet Moon—Solar Eclipse, Taurus New Moon—April 30th

There is no place so awake and alive as the edge of becomingSue Monk Kidd.

There are times when we need to return to the Earth, to the steady presence of trees, the song of a river’s flow, where we can return once more to a place of beginning. This weekend, the Moon withdraws into the darkness, slipping between the familiar body of the Earth and the fierce light of the Sun, inviting us to silence the mind, resonate to the heartbeat of the earth’s awakening.

The union of the Sun and the Moon symbolise the sacred embrace of the archetypal masculine and feminine, and this New Moon coincides with the ancient festival of Beltane, halfway between the spring equinox and the mid-summer solstice. Now the world bursts into bloom.

This is the time when the Queen of the May arrives in a cloud of floral fragrance. Bluebells, cobalt carpets unfurl across the woodlands. Ribbons of whitethorn thread emerald meadows into a velvety patchwork. Bonfires blaze from the hilltops sprinkled with golden buttercups. Bright ribbons and frayed clooties hang from the trees at holy wells.

Out of the belly of the earth, a surge of life emerges. And above, this New Moon in Taurus invites us to draw down, to focus on our senses, to dig our hands into the earth, plant seeds that will grow.

New Moons speak of fertile new beginnings, they signify those edges of becoming that make us feel young, alive again. Author Anne Lamott adds, “how do you begin? The answer is simple. You decide to.”

Our ancestors knew of the power of these natural rhythms that circled back to the same moment, reigniting the same intention, drawing from the grooves of ancient rituals worn deep by repetition. Just like the cycles of the Moon, the four cross quarter festivals weave past and future with a charge that holds us steady, binds us to those things that matter.

Like all astrological archetypes, Taurus is layered with older associations that draw us across the story lines of the ages, to the moist fertile flood plains of ancient rivers that spilled their life-giving waters and watered the origins of humankind.

For centuries, sacred cows with iconic, crescent-shaped horns have been bound to the symbolism of the Moon. An astrological cliché associates Taurus with money, and it is on this energetic terrain that we so often feel empowered/disempowered, lacking, or abundant.

Where Taurus is in our birth chart is where we must work the ground, plant the seeds of our gifts and talents, learn how to manage our resources of kindness, bravery, presence. Yet the skies are dark at New Moon times, a celestial reminder that we must learn to see in the blackness, wait patiently until the slim crescent appears.

This is a special New Moon as it accompanies a partial solar eclipse and heralds the start of an eclipse season that will sprinkle the weeks and months till October 25th. In our brightly lit world, eclipses no longer deliver the visceral jolt they did in times when the world became dark, and the life-giving Sun vanished. In ancient times, eclipses foretold of the deaths of Kings, winters of discontent; they accompanied war, famine, disease, and floods. The root word is the Greek “ekleipsis” which can be translated as a failure to appear, an abandonment, or a leaving of an accustomed place.

This partial solar eclipse belongs to a family of eclipses that pertain to our own authority and authority figures. During this eclipse (a week before and after) we may be compelled to yet again to confront those sacred cows that perpetuate dissonant cultural myths that arose out of ignorance and denial. We can refuse to participate in the toxic negativity that pervades social media. We can look at ways we abandon ourselves when we allow others to overstep our boundaries, challenge our authority. Eclipses act like wild cards as they drop into our birth charts or into the charts of nations, catapulting us from our place of comfort, taking us to the edge. Eclipses that conjoin planets set new directions in our lives, suddenly change our perspective, confront us with choices that invite us to be more attentive to our soul. This eclipse will activate our Taurus house and any planet at 10° Taurus.

The Taurus Sun and Moon also connect iconoclastic Uranus, planet associated with Prometheus the trickster Titan who stole fire from the gods in myth. Uranus shatters the status quo, reveals gaping fissures in those things we believed to be safe and sure.

As Uranus moves through Taurus (2018-2026) we have been jolted by circumstances that have altered our course, we have crypto currencies that gobble fossil fuels as we reach the end of the fossil fuel era, financial crises that have altered our course. Uranus, like the Tower card in the Tarot, represents a toppling of a structure, a breakdown, a breakthrough, that shatters and shocks us into a new realisation, releasing a renewing surge of energy from the heavens.

At this time of emergence, we may not feel quite ready to emerge, to bravely step onto new ground, yet this New Moon is charged with the grace of new beginnings. So go back to the garden and feel the warm pulse of the earth this weekend. Unplug from the peremptory dictates of technology and go within.

Almost everything will work again if you unplug it for a few minutes, including you—Anne Lamott.

For private astrology session or to find out more about workshops and webinars, please get in touch: ingrid@trueheartwork.com

 

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Still I Rise—New Moon in Aries—April 1st.

Just like moons and like suns,

With the certainty of tides,

Just like hopes springing high,

Still I’ll riseMaya Angelou.

There are many ways to be brave in this world, to rise again with hopes springing high. As we wear our bravest smile and take the hand of a loved one whose light is dimming, courage is concealed in those seemingly inconsequential choices that flutter like monarch butterflies into a world where nothing is certain.

As most of the world now waits for a glimmer of hope in Ukraine, the New Moon in Aries invites us to begin again, to take that leap forward, to find ourselves anew. Aries marks a point of Beginning, which may be a lonely journey into the unknown. In Aries we encounter the mythic motif of conquest, which always implies an act of bravery and daring. Here we meet the mythic “Warrior” who sets off on a quest, the “Hero” who personifies courage and assertiveness. The leader who makes tough choices. Aries is where we encounter our own autonomy, our ability to return to life.

We may encounter many opportunities to be courageous this new astrological month. Petty tyrants may mirror our own discomfort about taking a stand while dangerous rhetoric morphs into bullets and the dark tide of anger rises, setting fire to old grudges and unexamined narratives.

Aries is a Mars-ruled sign. The dark face of the Ram is testosterone-fuelled anger, self-absorption, competitiveness, and conflict.

The raw energy of Mars is ignited by a goal; something to conquer or defendthe Romans pragmatically dedicated the month of March to the war-god as they set off on their campaigns, certain of fresh supplies. We may notice Mars energy all around us this month. Survival and procreation are embodied in the natural world as the urgent thrust of spring spills over the land in a cascade of colour and the sweetest song.

Writes Lissa Rankin in her book, The Fear Cure, “courage is not about being fearless; it’s about letting fear transform you, so you come into right relationship with uncertainty, make peace with impermanence, and wake up to who you really are.”

A New Moon at 11° Aries initiates a fiery blast of energy carried by the winged messenger, Mercury (travel, trade, deal making and the tricky art of communication) who has slipped into hot-headed Aries. Aries is our self-directed quest for individuation, yet the trite injunction to “find our voice” may deafen the voices of others; our need to be “me” may mean breaking the heart of someone who loves us. The Sun and Moon join Chiron, the archetype of the wounded healer, as we learn, in the words of Ram Dass that “suffering is part of our training program for becoming wise.”

As Neptune and Jupiter edge ever closer to their 13-year rendezvous on April 12th, the collective is infused with idealism, compassion and a sense of unity that undulates through (some) nations as over 4 million refugees flee from the unspeakable horror of a war that will reshape all our lives.

Every 13 years, expansive Jupiter meets ambiguous Neptune and collectively,  we arrive at a moment that may inspire our faith, our creative imagination, or inflate delusion, propaganda, extend suffering, swell our emotions.  Although Neptune and Jupiter meet every 13 years in successive signs in the zodiac, this cycle is a once-in-a-lifetime moment because the last time they merged in Pisces was in 1856, which was 166 years ago when the Treaty of Paris deprived Russia of access to the river Danube, humiliating and stripping Russia of power at the end of the brutal Crimean War. These planetary archetypes manifest in manifold ways. When they united in the sign of Virgo in September 1932  millions starved to death under forced collectivization in Russia, Hitler gained power, and dust storms swirled over Kansas, Oklahoma, Colorado, Texas and New Mexico.

The promises of peace seeded in this New Moon energy may dissipate in all too familiar falsehoods and a shared commitment to outrageous lies as Neptune and Jupiter will amplify Piscean associations with suffering and martyrdom. Nested like an assemblage of Russian dolls, flawed political decisions have resulted in our dependence on gas and oil (Neptune) which, along with the banks that finance them, are the most important source of Russia’s foreign income. As (some countries) decry the war in Ukraine, governments fund the war in payment for Russia’s fossil fuels. George Monbiot writes, “we have a truth crisis… it is much deeper and wider than we care to admit… it is systemic and universal.”

The celestial aqua-ballet dance of Jupiter and Neptune will infuse the collective throughout 2022. These amorphous planets linger within 6º  of one another from the end of October to December 20th when Jupiter enters Aries, the day before the Solstice. This leitmotif will wash over us all in waves all through this year, bringing back to shore what we are feeling and experiencing now. In the final weeks of November Jupiter hangs like a tear drop in the skies, at the culminating 29º point of resolution.

As Jupiter, Neptune and Chiron united in the humanitarian sign of Aquarius in 2009, James Cameron’s Avatar mirrored the zeitgeist of the time. Our personal and collective experience may be very different as Avatar 2 is released. Jupiter and Neptune in Pisces mirror a world-weariness, a collective post-pandemic grief that has been by-passed by governments eager for progress and profit. For those who have lost loved ones, for those whose lives have been dragged down into the undertow by loss of work or direction, everything may seem blurred, life’s pulse beat feeble. Yet in our grief may make fluid our rigid routines, dissolve our hardened habits, cleanse the debris of emotional blockages, we draw moisture into our parched lives. At this New Moon time of fresh starts and hopeful new beginnings, this beautiful quote from the first Avatar movie reminds us, “you are stronger and wiser and freer than you have ever been. And now you have come to the crossroads of destiny. It’s time for you to choose.”

Please get in touch if you would like a private astrology consultation: ingrid@trueheartwork.com

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Tears of the World—New Moon in Pisces—March 2nd.

As the barest inkling of renewed life begins to emerge for humankind after months of prolonged uncertainty and life-shaping sequestration, a deadly percussion of explosions rocks Ukraine, ricochets across the world.

We’re still becoming acquainted with the rites of grief. And now an uninvited shadow of war casts its darkness over us all. Images of tanks and shattered buildings, wide-eyed children, and desperate mothers maroon us in the suffering and the numbing horror of state-sanctioned death and destruction.

The astrology of the moment reflects the temporal turmoil of this time. Millions of lives, human and animal, will be scattered across the wastelands of war as the tethered fish of Pisces draw us into the territory of grief, opening our hearts to a far deeper cry than our own. Planets that wear iridescent Piscean clothing offer strange tinctures of genius and madness.

Pisces is the last sign of the zodiac and there’s a world-weariness as we collectively empty out, let go, at the portal of a new era.

This month a porous Pisces Sun joins Jupiter and Neptune in the water-logged realm of the Tethered Fish. This archetype is a marshy boundaryless space where a miasma of uncertainty leaches moisture from our imagination. We may feel suspended in a sea of hype or unspeakable horror. Netflix’s Inventing Anna, Tinder Swindler and Fyre, depict Pisces propensity for glitz and glamour, charisma, and deceit. Neptune-ruled Pisces swirls in fantasy, drowns in deception.  Film, oil, gas, and deadly viruses also fall under Neptune’s briny deeps. So do charismatic leaders and self-appointed messiahs.

On March 2nd the luminaries meet in the darkness, a monthly tryst that carries a deeper significance as grandiose gas giant, Jupiter joins this lunation. This alignment may amplify Jupiter’s excess, immorality, and a potentially dark and destructive influence comes from the alignment of Mars and Venus with Pluto. Venus (diplomacy) and Mars (war) are still paired as they move through the skies. Mars and Venus edge closer to Pluto, god of ruthless destruction, and meet on this New Moon, as Jupiter and Neptune move to a tight conjunction on April 12th (greater demand for oil and gas, propaganda, financial bubbles). Jupiter then moves into hot-headed Aries from May 10th, amplifying blood-thirst and a demand for weapons of war.

Planets, like history, move in circles and cycles. The last time Neptune and Jupiter met in Pisces was on March 17th 1856 (18° Pisces) when the Treaty of Paris deprived Russia of access to the River Danube, humiliating and stripping Russia of power at the end of the barbarous Crimean War.

Michel Eltchaninoff, editor-in-chief of Philosophie magazine and a specialist in the history of Russian thought, writes, “the Russian president’s dangerous sense of victimhood draws on 20th-century ideas of his country’s frustrated potential. It is necessary, then, to understand that what is actually happening in Ukraine is the result of a vision of Russia that is deeply embedded in the mind of Putin.”

Neptune/Jupiter conjunctions accompany hype, great expectations, territorial expansion, and the kind of faith and hope that carries us through struggle. In a hopeful piece, historian and philosopher, Yuval Noah Harari writes, “at the heart of the Ukraine crisis lies a fundamental question about the nature of history and the nature of humanity: is change possible? Can humans change the way they behave, or does history repeat itself endlessly, with humans forever condemned to re-enact past tragedies without changing anything except the décor?”

The suffering in Ukraine affects us all. Lynne McTaggart proposes, “if a quantum field holds us all together in its invisible web, we will have to rethink our definitions of ourselves and what exactly it is to be human…if we’re not separate, we can no longer think in terms of “winning” and “losing.” We need to redefine what we designate as “me” and “not-me,” and reform the way that we interact with other human beings, practice business, and view time and space. We have to reconsider how we choose and carry out our work, structure our communities, and bring up our children. We have to imagine another way to live.”

George Monbiot points out in his book, Out of the Wreckage, that humans are unique, spectacularly unusual, when it comes our sensitivity to the needs of others. We have an innate altruism, an inborn sense of community. Neuroscience, evolutionary biology and psychology all conclude that we have evolved to care, to cooperate with one another. “By the age of fourteen months, children begin to help each other, attempting to hand over objects another child cannot reach. By the time they are two, they start sharing some of the things they value. By the age of three, they start to protest against other people’s violation of moral normswe are also, among mammals, with the possible exception of the naked mole rat, the supreme co-operators,” Monbiot writes.

We may feel bone weary after months of adrenaline-charged coping, of being our best and bravest, kindest selves, yet the sky-story this month depicts a sequence of events that will marshal our good manners, our co-operation, our wisdom and our compassion.

“I am marooned on a crag of superiority in an ocean of soldiers,” wrote Wilfred Owen, (Sun and Venus in Pisces) who was killed in the mud and blood of World War I, one week before armistice was declared.

We are collectively moving through a time of initiation that may transform us at our core or maroon us on a crag of authoritarianism.

What will we choose?

For astrology consultations or more information about webinars, please get in touch: ingrid@trueheartwork.com

 

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Watercourse—Full Moon in Cancer—January 17th

Now let us welcome the New Year, full of things that have never been—Rainer Maria Rilke.

January, named in honour of Janus the two-headed god of thresholds arrived without the usual swaggering bravado, or wishful “this year will be better”. An unpretentious New Moon in Saturn-ruled Capricorn welcomed in this first month of the calendar year, her silvery light swathed in darkness.

On January 17th the Full Moon in Cancer gifts us with a luminous reminder of the opposing energies of Capricorn and Cancerstructures and boundaries, anchoring and love; or the shadowy qualities of muscular authoritarianism and alienation.

Already the days are growing longer and the primroses on the riverbanks turn their delicate yellow faces to the sun as we begin to resume the routines and rituals that ground us in our ordinary lives.

For forty days and forty nights of “quarantine”, Venus has been in the underworld, inviting us to turn within, to gather clarity, strength and commitment.  She has been moving Retrograde since December 19th when she united with Pluto at 26° Capricorn for the first of three intense encounters (December 19th, December 25th, and March 3rd). We all have Venus in our birth chart, an archetype that reflects our heart’s initiations, our deep soulful attachments, our satiated fullness, and our tortured emptiness.

Venus has been moving through Capricorn for four months (she enters Aquarius on March 6th) and during her time in the darkness, we may have been confronted with love’s shadowsloss of trust or hope in a relationship, changes in friendships that reflect our changing values and personal aspirations; separations and betrayals that ultimately lead us to a fuller experience of self-acceptance and a deeper understanding of what our soul yearns for. At the time of the New Moon, Venus disappeared as an Evening star and if you’re up early on January 15th, Venus will rise resplendent, a bright star in the East, a vision of beauty and fertility and power; a moment that was welcomed by our ancestors.

Elusive Mercury switches direction and begins to apparently move in reverse across the skies in Retrograde (10° Aquarius) on January 14th-February 3rd, inviting us to listen more attentively, to reconnect with the archetypal realm of our imagination, the subtle prompts of our intuition, to acknowledge the power of our intention and the psychic energy we bring to our encounters with others.  As winter’s frosty grip softens, our earth-born bodies respond to the light, new dreams seed themselves in our imagination as Jupiter floats through Pisces, a luminous star of Hope that shimmers in the west after sunset, with Saturn still close by.

Saturn accompanies rules and authorities; sober realisations that things may not turn out as we want them to. Saturn in modern times is associated with fate or destiny, with necessity and restraint, those things we have cast out in our mechanistic material culture where we, in our hubris and our self-inflation, believe that we are all powerful—we can fix, manifest, cut away, or buy our way out of any mess we make. This New Year, Saturn may lay his hand on a defining moment in your life. There may be no escape, except a shift in perception as we pare down our doomed to fail resolutions, hold ourselves tenderly as we work with what is, rather than what we wish it could be.

In the ever-changing sky, Saturn and Uranus are still in a discordant square all through 2022 and 2023, a celestial symbol of clashing points of view, polarities, and divisions, as these ancient mythic enemies confront each other in the heavens and an old order collides with the new. Saturn transits arrive as the henchmen of stasis that often thwart our efforts to move forward, yet they present as circumstances that grow us up, if we’re willing to learn. When these two archetypes face off in the heavens, they reflect tension, upheaval, limitations of freedom, resistance, and rebellion. In our own birth charts, transits of Uranus break us open, shatter and destabilise those things that are too tightly defended or have outlived their purpose.

Mars, the warrior god, joins forces with unpredictable Uranus in August and Pluto makes an opposition to Venus around then. So, although many of us are longing for some hope that the pandemic will end soon, Creation stories always tell of darkness and chaos that come before creation. The Pluto/Saturn conjunction of January 2020 has fermented all that is rotten in our world. The dross has risen to the surface and each one of us now faces the consequences of those things we have repressed or simply ignored. In the tumultuous confusion, perhaps something greater ushers humanity towards what is yet to be.

The discordant Saturn/Uranus energy is reflected in the cacophonous deluge of sentiment and divisive hate-speak that has reached its nadir as tennis star Novac Djokovic’s fate is now determined by Australia’s health minister. The agitation in Australia reflects our collective psychosis after almost two years of uncertainty, on/off lockdowns, and exposes the shadowy underbelly of an Establishment that continue to ignore the plight of incarcerated asylum seekers, and those who live on the edges of society, without the fame or financial resources to employ legal aid or seek release from their circumstances.

As tensions mount, scapegoats will be driven out, minorities become criminals. A Saturnian policing bill now targets Roma, Gypsy and Travellers in the UK if they “trespass” in places that have not been designated for them. In 1930 Saturn and Uranus were in Square  and between 1933-1939, the Roma and Sinti were interned and murdered by the Nazi Regime.

As impetuous Mars and the North Node in Taurus aligns with Uranus (April, May, October and November) frustrations may intensify and spill over nebulous and overvalued cryptocurrency as governments (symbolised by Saturn) attempt to regulate this environmentally devastating disruptor to established banking systems.

A subtle backdrop this year is the idealistic union of Jupiter and Neptune (April 12th), a rare meeting in Pisces and one that amplifies Piscean qualities of compassion, creativity, but also a celestial blind spot, something hidden in the collective midstream that may seduce or anesthetise, conceal a truth or weave a web of lies. Jupiter and Neptune co-rule Pisces. The fish are ephemeral, lacking in substance, intoxicating, seductive and illusionary, and perhaps swimming is futile. All we can do is to relax and float until we are sure that what we have seen is not a mirage.

Jupiter and Neptune were last united in Pisces in March 1856 as Wagner completed Die Walküre and Sigmund Freud was born. 1856 was a year of senseless warfare and sacrifice, ships were lost at sea, native communities were exterminated, and the barbarous Crimean war ended.

Piscean symbolism includes oceans, but also extremist ideologies that offer the promise of redemption from suffering. This combination of celestial energies may unleash a tsunami of pent-up grief and suffering; it may surge through cryptocurrencies, drown the hype, dissolve castles in the air, suffocate seabirds in sticky black oil as giant oil tankers run aground. This is the seductive energy of the speculator, a glimpse of hope that may be unfounded, perhaps, the realisation that as we drop the salvational fantasy we are freed up to sweetness of simple pleasures, self-acceptance, and a deeper appreciation of the poetics of life.

We may feel pulled apart by a longing to escape from it all as this expansive, boundaryless Jupiter-Neptune conjunction forms while the next constrictive and frustrating Mars/Saturn conjunction emerges; an echo of the Mars/Saturn conjunction of late March early April 2020 as the magnitude of the pandemic permeated through the collective and nations locked down.

The conjunction of Mars and Saturn of late March and early April 2022 signifies an ending of a cycle, and the start of a new one that occurred during the early outbreak of the pandemic and the early phases of the lockdown, and continued as Mars moved through Taurus, Leo, and Scorpio in 2021 and new COVID variants emerged accompanied by mandates and restrictions. The North Node entered Taurus on December 23rd 2021, and will move through Taurus till July 12th 2023, meeting Uranus this July.  There’ll be a sprinkling of eclipses in Taurus on April 30th, and November 8th and in Scorpio on May 16th and October 25th, as Pluto returns to the place of its inception in the American birth chart this year. Modern astrologers tend to agree that eclipses are wild cards, and the effects are unpredictable, though solar eclipses tend to be externalised and lunar eclipses are subtler, more internal, often related to the past, to our emotions and perceptions.

As the archetypal energies of Taurus and Scorpio are energised in the coming months, in our own birth charts and in the birth charts of nations, we may be reminded of the bull-headed, flesh-eating half-man who lived in the centre of the labyrinth. This hideous monster, the Minotaur, was also called by another name. Asterion. Star.

As we welcome this brave new year and sit with the paradox of those things that stir our anger and release our tears, let’s pause for a while in the quiet shade of the unknown before we enter the fray.

This is the year of living bravely, soulfully, imaginatively, abandoning those things that are irretrievably broken and reimagining our place in the world, rooting back into the earth.

Poet and novelist, Ben Okri writes, “bad things will happen, and good things too. Your life will be full of surprises. Miracles happen only where there has been suffering. So, taste your grief to the fullest. Don’t try and press it down. Don’t hide from it. Don’t escape. It is Life too. It is truth. But it will pass, and time will put a strange honey in the bitterness. That’s the way life goes.”

For astrology consultations, please get in touch with me, I would love to hear from you: ingrid@trueheartwork.com

 

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