There is no place so awake and alive as the edge of becoming—Sue Monk Kidd.
This week, the Moon withdraws into the darkness, slipping between the familiar body of the Earth and the fierce light of the Sun. This new Moon invites us to stand expectantly at the edge of something new.
New Moons speak of fertile new beginnings. They signify those edges of becoming that make us feel young, alive again. And yet, as the Moon lays her soft white body over the Sun tonight, we may be overcome with a strange tiredness, a listlessness that sucks at our energy as if our own life-force was eclipsed.
This rare hybrid solar eclipse at the very last degree of Aries signifies an ending and the birth of something new, which may be a change in perspective, a new way of being in the world, a reliquishment of the need to hold on so tightly. If we imagine the moon’s pale body briefly obscuring the light of the sun, we may sense, in the darkness, the soft presence of a deeper knowing, the urgent thrust of life force that compels us to move beyond our fear.
Eclipses act like wild cards. They drop into our birth charts or into the charts of nations, catapulting us from our place of comfort, taking us to the edge. They fizz with an urgency that may reshape our choices and invite us to be more attentive to the longing of our soul. Hybrid solar eclipses occur only a few times each century. We will engage with the deeper meaning of this celestial event if this eclipse energises an axis or conjoins a personal planet in our birth chart.
Astrological Aries carries the heat of fire that ignites an ancient urge to battle and survive. Tonight we engage with the archetype of the heroine/hero. Tonight as we feel the firepower, we may be inspired by those who challenged patriarchy, dared to risk, to speak out. As we imagine the fierce courage and commitment of trailblazers like Cornish-born Emily Hobhouse who exposed the horror of the British concentration camps in South Africa and was an avid opponent of the first world war, or Jane Goodall who has worked tirelessly for the welfare and survival of primates, and writer and sage, Maya Angelou, (all born as the Sun moved through the flames of Aries,) we will sense the potency of this astrological archetype.
This Aries eclipse marks the beginning of the eclipse season that will last until October 28th with this year’s final partial lunar eclipse (5° Taurus.) It charges the powerful, final degree of Aries (29° 50′) and belongs to a family of eclipses (Saros 7 North) that pertain to what astrologer Bernadette Brady describes as igniting “sudden passions and lust to birth and procreative drives that may catch people off guard and confront them with their own very deep passion which may have been hidden for many years.”
With a challenging square to Pluto and a weakening conjunction to Jupiter, this eclipse releases a renewing surge of energy from the heavens that may inspire us to confront a situation, or bravely relinquish our need to engage in a futile power struggle.
There’s nothing subtle about this hybrid eclipse. It conveys the qualities of Pluto’s long passage through Aquarius, which will influence world events and our own lives for the next 20 years. The effects of this solar eclipse will linger for six months and may manifest as earthquakes, volcanic eruptions, financial and political crisis, socio-economic change.
The Sun advances into the steady earth sign of Taurus on April 20th, as Mercury moves Retrograde in Taurus (April 21st to May 14th) bringing our attention to those things we value, perhaps quite literally our material possessions, property, finances, or income. As Pluto’s evolutionary influence threads through the collective consciousness, the AI arms race accelerates, spewing torrents of misinformation on social platforms. As AI research and tech leaders call in vain for a pause on the AI arms race, data warehousing expert, Dr Barry Devlin adds his voice to a group of concerned industry gurus and warns, “this rapid, profit-driven growth in generative AI which uses as its lexicon the clearly biased, deeply flawed, and completely un-curated corpus of internet text and imagery is a massive, unregulated social experiment.”
AI-generated art, writing, and photography scrapes billions of words and images from the internet without their creators’ knowledge or permission. The mythic-poetic symbolism of this first eclipse of 2023 draws us down into the Underworld of AI-generated deepfakes, a collective social experiment where we face not only ethical concerns, but also the loss of millions of jobs—actors, models and model agencies, artists, writers and photographers, accountants, and teachers, to name but a few, will be obsolete. Writes senior Vox reporter Sara Morrison, “Levi’s will be able to use AI models to show off its gloves, while the rest of us might be thrown into a new world where we have absolutely no idea what we can trust — one that’s even worse than the world we currently inhabit.”
She cautions, “if you see an image of Pope Francis strolling around Rome in Gucci jeans on Twitter, you might want to think twice before you hit retweet.”
At this time of emergence, we may not feel quite ready to emerge, to bravely step onto new ground. But this new Moon is charged with the grace of new beginnings, and we must step cautiously and bravely into an earth that is dying, a new world that is becoming.
Poet Rainer Maria Rilke offers these words of encouragement, “fear not the strangeness you feel. The future must enter you long before it happens. Just wait for the birth, for the hour of the new clarity.”
The significance of this rare eclipse can only be fully understood in silence. There may be times over the coming months, when we need to unplug from the peremptory dictates of technology and go within. As we stand bare-footed, rooted to the Earth, as we feel the steady presence of a tree, as we hear the sweet song of a river’s flow, we return again to a place of beginning.
Anne Lamott who was born under the sign of the Aries Ram asks “how do you begin? The answer is simple. You decide to.”
Join me for a Midsummer Celebration of Light—June 24th
The Midsummer Solstice is a pivot point in the Great Wheel of the Year. A time of celebration and plenty, a time of magic and mystery, when the veil between the worlds is thin, the Sun is at its Zenith, and the world is infused with Light.
We’ll explore an old Irish story of love and triumph; we’ll attune to the phases of the moon and the best time to be newly creative.
We’ll journey with Eileen Heneghan in a soulful meditation and connect with the Light within.
Join us on Saturday, June 24th, 14.00-15.30.
Price: £20 or EURO 23.
Zoom link will be sent to you via email.
Contact Ingrid Hoffman: firstname.lastname@example.org