About Dana Gerhardt

A popular columnist with The Mountain Astrologer since 1991, Dana Gerhardt is an internationally respected astrologer. She has lectured extensively and written for astrology publications on several continents. Her ongoing passions are the moon and living the intuitive life. Dana worked for many years in the corporate sector, where she observed the undeniable influence of natural cycles. She graduated Phi Beta Kappa, Magna Cum Laude from Occidental College in Los Angeles and did graduate work in literature at Columbia University and CSULA. Dana can be contacted by email.

Taurus New Moon Darshan

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I live in a town where famous gurus often visit. I remember one particularly famous one who offered darshan — a sacred event in which one sees and is seen by a genuine divine being. Several hundred of us descended on the church, then knelt and crawled to the little rug where we offered our bent heads to her transformative touch.

I’ll admit it: I felt nothing.

But I did feel something a couple weeks later in the YMCA parking lot. As I opened my car door, a toddler appeared (his mother was standing nearby). He had the biggest bluest eyes I’d ever seen. “Washoonaym” he said. After a confused moment, I realized his meaning. “It’s Dana,” I replied, “And what’s your name?” He didn’t answer, but turned again with great enthusiasm to his mother, “It’s Dana!” He clapped his hands with glee. His mother and I smiled at each other and as I walked away, I heard him say again, “Her name is Dana!” His mother softly instructed, “You should have told her your name.”

But I was already gone… in the bliss of being touched so deeply by this little guru whose teaching was just what I needed. His giddy un-self-consciousness was like a Zen stick on my head, rousing me from the usual self-concern. It said: Forget yourself and savor life! Feel the joy of meeting everything fresh!

Now as I consider my vows for this Taurus New Moon, I wonder what it would be like to greet each stranger, everyone and everything, with the same un-self-conscious enthusiasm as that little boy had shown me. To step out my door and shout “It’s a blue sky!” Or in the afternoon at Starbucks “It’s the guy making coffee and his name is Aaron!” And if I could see you reading this, I’d want to say “It’s you! It’s you! I’m so glad you’re here!”

 

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Soon the Sun enters Gemini

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                             When we are going toward someone we say
                             you are just like me
                             your thoughts are my brothers and sisters
                             word matches word
                             how easy to be together.

                             When we are leaving someone we say
                             how strange you are
                             we cannot communicate
                             we can never agree
                             how hard, hard and weary to be together. 

                             –from “Simple-song” by Marge Piercy

Just four days after the Taurus New Moon, the Sun enters Gemini (May 21). Our minds will turn towards Gemini things… books, words, chatter, curiosity, whimsy, and evil twins. Every year at this time, the Sun turns your attention to the Gemini house(s) of your chart, when it’s useful to pause and ponder which half of Piercy’s poem you’re experiencing this year.  Are you going towards a world that seems easy and like-minded?  Or does your world, your companions, your familiar routes seem weary and hard?  If you’re living in the second stanza, this Gemini season may be especially important for you.

Gemini is your annual opportunity to update your world.  You may know exactly what needs updating. If not, you can start with your language.  Freshen up your vocabulary with a few new and enlivening words.  Listen to somebody younger, older, or with a different color skin, and steal a new term; use it for at least a week.  If you have a meditation practice, let your thoughts run a little before you go to silence.  Are inspiring–or self-defeating–mantras are running through your mind?  Take your journal to a coffee house and see where the pen or keyboard takes you. Feeling uninspired? Write a letter to an earlier version of yourself:  the third grader you, the college freshman you, the night-before-getting-married you.  Share something you recently discovered about yourself and what you hope to learn in the year to come.

Remind yourself of all the times that you were actively going toward life.  Remember what you saw in your mate when your eyes were fresh and open?  Remember how your workplace looked the first day you walked in?  Are there any experiences evoking the same beginner’s mind in you today?  Consult a dictionary of names and let your finger randomly fall on one of them, maybe “Barbara,” “Chester,” or “Maxie.”  Promise the gods that you’ll meet somebody new this month with just that name, maybe at the grocery store, the museum, the library.  But be on the lookout, for winged Mercury will make sure this person has a message for you.

With all the scandals and legitimate horrors, with everything moving at such inflated speed these days, my next piece of advice may seem strange.  But especially if your world feels heavier this year, if you’ve lost your ability to communicate with your dear ones, this is the month to lighten your spirit.  The secret to Gemini’s month is not to take your quest for knowledge too seriously.  At least once this season abandon your obligations and honor your mischievous child.  Let your gurus be the Cat in the Hat and Curious George.  Pick one day, one afternoon, one morning, when your inner adult takes a snooze.  Then follow that itchy little spirit within.  This creates a vacuum into which Gemini’s magic can rush like a giddy wind.

And don’t forget your evil twin.  Find a long-necked bottle.  Let your evil twin whisper into it every shocking thing on his/her mind.  Everything.  Without any judgment from the “good you.”  If your twin needs more than one bottle, that’s fine.  Then fill your bottle(s) with water and drive to a wild place.  While you dance in a wide dervish circle, sprinkle your evil twin’s water joyfully all over the ground.  Be sure to laugh.  Talk to whatever animal comes to watch as though it were your brother or sister.

This is also a great time to learn more about yourself through your chart. Check out my personalized Moonprints and Venus reports. Lots of great reading!  And the subject couldn’t be lovelier… they’re all about you!

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3 Minute New Moon Ritual

Ritual: Taurus New Moon

Ground your body, clear your mind…

Become aware of your body. Notice how gravity holds and connects you to earth. It’s as though your body is an ancient stone temple—solid, strong, secure. Sanctify this temple. Imagine a priestess is pouring sacred water and scattering rose petals, all the way down, from your head to your toes. Any anxiety or negativity washes away. Notice the thoughts and feelings leaving the temple—your judgments, your distracted mind, your worried heart. Be sure to honor them. Give each a smile and a piece of cake as it departs.

Draw a circle of protection, call in blessings…

Visualize a ring of fragrant flowers surrounding you, protecting you. Know that you are safe and relaxed. Breathe deeply. Feel the power of the Sun and Moon pouring into your circle. The energy of Taurus is gathering in your circle. It is patient and sensual. It is loyal and artistic. It is capable and strong. Continue absorbing this energy as you read the Taurus affirmations.

  • Earth sustains me.
  • I am creative.
  • I am rich with abundance.
  • I slow down and savor each moment.
  • I delight in my senses.
  • I am productive.
  • I love pleasure.
  • I am secure.

Allow seed intentions to form…

Your intentions for this cycle are gathering. You may already know what you wish to accomplish. Or you may not. Trust that all will unfold perfectly in time. Know that this brief ritual has aligned you with spirit. Now ask your heart if it has a closing message for you. This may come in words or as a picture, perhaps as a body sensation or sound. Give yourself time to receive this message. Digest it. Write it down. Then, in gratitude to yourself and spirit, return to normal awareness. Place a symbol of your Taurus New Moon message on your altar.


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3 Minute Full Moon Ritual

Ritual: Taurus Scorpio Full Moon

Drawing down the moon…

Imagine above you the round glowing disc of the moon, bathing you in a protective circle of light. Vibrant with energy, your space is transformed, filled with the purity of spirit. Stand and raise your arms above your head. Let your palms face each other and curve slightly toward the moon. Feel as though you’re a sacred chalice, drawing the power of the Great Mother into every cell of your being—from your toes, to your womb, to your breasts, to your jaw, and your eyes. Feel the pleasure of this energy. It is vibrant with the power to give, to receive, to nurture life, and manifest what is possible.

Sending your blessings…

Draw your hands to your heart. Massage this area. Feel that you have become the goddess, capable of balancing the earth and harmonizing its opposing forces. In particular you are tuned to the energies of Taurus and Scorpio. Taurus is earthy, sensual, and attractive, drawing in what it needs to feel comfortable and secure. It is slow-moving, like the earth, also lush and abundant. Scorpio is mysterious, hidden, and attractive in a potent, magnetic way. It holds its power deeply inward, like a jewel in an underground cavern. Both are “fixed” signs, strong, persevering, and capable of great commitment and depth of character. Both are deeply rooted in sexual experience. Pleasure-loving Taurus loves to touch and be touched, to be stimulated by scents and tastes. Scorpio is intensely passionate and capable of a thrilling intimacy once it trusts. Both are also the primary money signs—keen to manage the vast resources of wealth in the world.

When we are in balance at the Full Moon, we vibrate with the energy of both signs. This is a passionate time! But if we are out of balance, we may tip into more negative expressions of one or both signs. Taurus can be stubborn and indolent, dictatorial, or resistant to change. Scorpio can be overcome with emotional turmoil, vengeful, jealous, and secretive—or power-mad and controlling. Even if you are feeling balanced, surely there are those in the world this season who are stuck in the negative energies. Imagine that with your goddess vision, you have the ability to see this negativity circling the globe like a dark smoke. Know that if you breathe in this smoke you have the power to transform it in your heart—breathing it out as the pure white light of the goddess. Read the affirmations and visualize the world’s darkness dissolving with your breath. Find a comfortable rhythm and repeat the statements until your light has transformed the world.

  • Breathing in…
    Lonely rooms, isolated hearts, cold despots.
  • Breathing out…
    Love’s comforting and passionate touch.
  • Breathing in…
    Poverty; the fear there’s just not enough.
  • Breathing out…
    An abundant flow of wealth, satisfying every need.
  • Breathing in…
    The habit of unhappiness, being stuck in the past.
  • Breathing out…
    Magical transformations, just for the asking!

Grounding the energy…

See the world bathed in the purifying light of your offering: the sleeping babies, the politicians arguing, the starving children, liars and thieves. See the world transforming with this light, growing peaceful and calm. When you are ready, bring your hands to your sides, palms facing the earth. Send your divine light deep into the earth. See this energy take shape as a round moon, gathering below you in the center of the earth. Feel yourself slowly coming back into your body. Rest in this peace until you are ready to return to your life. Blessed be.


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Best Beltane Ritual!

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For more about Beltane, read this from our archives, and guest blogger Jane Galer.

Let this Beltane Full Moon stimulate your senses and draw you into the magic of your ordinary world. Do you feel a quickening in your body? A desire to experience even more earthly delights? Ritual is a time-honored way to attract invisible assistance in manifesting your desires. And it’s a wonderful way to deepen play with the creative earth energy of the Sun transiting Taurus. That’s why every Spring, on an auspicious Friday, during the Venus-ruled Taurus season, I perform the Santeria ritual for Oshun.  As the Yoruba goddess of fresh waters, Oshun oversees the same delights that Venus does. I call “Venus” with Oshun’s ritual and neither goddess seems to mind the confusion.

The first time I did the ceremony as a lark.  Venus rules pleasures, money and love—who wouldn’t be eager for more of that!  To ensure a powerful result, I knew I needed to be as specific as possible.  I meditated on my desires—they seemed faraway, perhaps impossible, but I knew exactly what I was dreaming of: I wanted a fabulous new home and a man to share it with.  Given the magnitude of my request—wouldn’t it take time to bring such bounty!—I figured it wasn’t too soon to let Venus know.

I gathered the requisite ingredients: a dinner roll, a nickel, my desires written down on a piece of paper, some honey, and a candle.  I prepared them as instructed. The ritual was supposed to conclude with tossing the combined ingredients into a body of fresh (not salty) running water. This was not easy to find in my suburban neighborhood.  And I was not going to toss my dreams in the toilet—the common suburban substitute for ritual running water.  Thankfully, a receptionist at the local water company told me of an unmarked spot three miles north of the main road. There, in an unnamed stream moving briskly through a forgotten oak grove, I surrendered my dreams to Venus. She could help me or not!

Just six weeks later I found myself in escrow on a home so beautiful, with waterfalls, French windows, breath-taking views, it was grander than my wildest dreams. And guess what—the man arrived too, bringing a loan for the down payment and a desire to move in with me!

I was stunned.

I’ve performed the Santeria Oshun ritual many times since. None of my subsequent rituals have surpassed the sheer drama of that first result. Yet my repeated petitions to Venus have brought something far more profound: Venus is now a living presence in my life. My exquisite dream house has since been sold, its profits funding a prosperity of ease and playfulness that was once only a dream of mine. The man who materialized after that first ritual has since moved on, allowing another man, even more passionate, to join my life. My days are more pleasure-filled than ever before. No longer is Venus just a figment of my imagination. She’s a real being whom I actively serve, by celebrating what she loves.

It’s not the desire to pile up Venusian goodies that prompts my annual rituals. The sparkle and rush of running streams in my neighborhood, the teasing bowers of new Spring growth—they stir me to it. One time, after preparing our rolls and burning our candles, my partner and I drove to a local creek. I could sense Venus dancing in the water and among the leaves. I could feel her within, a rising joy. “Oh let’s pick a good spot, so we can watch our rolls float awhile downstream!” I focused into the pleasure of the moment and flung my bread into the water. I watched as it swiftly sailed through the sun-lit current, until it went out of view.

Exhilarated, I turned to my partner. His face was glum. There was his bread, inches away from where he’d thrown it, pinned against a rock. Every moment in ritual is a telling one. If what shows up is contrary to our desires, it indicates what might be in our way, or what is unclear about our current state of mind. My partner had been feeling stuck in his life for awhile. He shrugged his shoulders and turned toward the car. “No!  We must free it!” Was it Venus speaking in me?  We tossed stones, laughed, nearly fell into the water, and then his roll sprung free and went on its way. At home that night, we honored Venus deliciously.

Gods and humans need each other.  We love their magic.  They love our acknowledgement.  It is through us that they live!  I hope you spend this Taurus Moon cycle living the joy of Venus.  Use the Santeria ritual, or any other means!

Santeria Venus Ritual

“The invisible world wants to help us,” declares visionary activist and astrologer Caroline Casey, “but spiritual etiquette requires that we ask.”  One of the best ways I know to ask for Venus blessings is the Santeria Venus ritual (described by Casey in her Making the Gods Work for You. I make sure I perform this ritual every year during the Taurus cycle.  I encourage you to do the same!

  1. It’s best to perform this ritual on a Friday—which is Venus’ day.  You’ll need a round piece of bread, like a dinner roll.  Make a hole in it and put a nickel or five pennies inside (the number five is sacred to Venus).
  2. On a small piece of paper, clearly state your desires.  Fold this paper and put it into the bread, on top of your nickel.  Then pour a little honey on top of that (as Casey always says, “for obvious symbolic reasons!”).
  3. Finally, place a small candle in the hole (bigger than a birthday candle, but smaller than a taper).  Casey suggests a yellow candle, though I’ve found different colors fun to play with.
  4. Light the candle.  As it is burning, honor Venus:   take a luxurious bath, go shopping, make love.  Do something that makes you feel juicy, beautiful, pampered, prosperous, and happy.  Like attracts like—a delightful like-minded mood attracts Venus like nothing else!
  5. When the candle is completely burned down, so that only melted wax is on the bread, take it to sweet flowing water—a stream or a river, but nothing salty like the ocean.  Toss this now ritually potent (and fully bio-degradable) roll into the water, reciting an invocation, poem, or prayer of your choice.
  6. The goddess will respond to your desires in the coming weeks. She might fulfill your dreams in miraculous ways. Or she might play the trickster—revealing a blind spot that still stands in the way of your desires.

 

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Isn’t it time?

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Note from Dana: I’m happy to have as my guest blogger, the talented flower essence artist, Jane Ellen. Her intimacy with Venus through flowers makes her an exquisitely passionate advocate for this campaign.

Prior to the “Women On 20’s” campaign, had you ever noticed that there are no female figures on our paper money?

Since my early twenties, I have longed to see women on our paper money, and have felt painfully aware that they were not represented. When I was introduced to the Women On 20’s Campaign, I was filled with joy and relief to realize that others felt the same!

It was a mere 100 years ago that our female ancestors—our very own great-grandmothers—were not allowed to vote. What brought about the change?  Women speaking up!  Now, I am a woman who is sincerely inspired to be part of speaking up for this next change. It may seem insignificant, but in my heart, I know it is an essential shift that needs to happen in order to bring greater balance to our world. I am thrilled to know this change will happen in our lifetime, and that we have the privilege of voting for the extraordinary women being considered.

How will it feel for us to pass money through our hands that includes the invaluable place of women in our world—women who have made undeniable contributions to shaping our country and our society—women who have touched countless lives with their vision, their strength of heart, and their service? I know I will feel we’ve made one more essential step toward a more honest existence and for every step in that direction, I am grateful.

When you read the bios of the final four candidates (and I hope you will!), notice which one moves you most? Each one of them touched me deeply, and when I was ready to vote, I chose the woman who inspired me in the most personal way, and I felt great pleasure in casting my vote, followed by a deep, internal bow of respect and gratitude for the lasting impression she has made in my life, and in this world.

Jane Ellen collaborates with Flora in the “Ask Flora” column
and answers a new query here.

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Honor Venus this Beltane!

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Every year, when the Sun is in Taurus, I celebrate with my favorite Venus ritual.  I get out the calendar and look for the most auspicious Friday that month.  Best is a Friday when both the Sun and Moon are in Venus-ruled signs.  Even better if it coincides with a cross-quarter holiday, as it does this year. In my experience, this is rare!  May 1 is Beltane and the Moon is in Venus-ruled Libra, while the Sun is in Venus-ruled Taurus. You’ve got time to plan!

Schedule something fun, a little wild, even bawdy. Or just let yourself be free that day to be heart-struck with love and gratitude for your world.  I’ll post my Venus Santeria ritual next month, but you can get a peek here, so you can start gathering your intentions and ritual items.

For more about Beltane, read this from our archives, and guest blogger Jane Galer.

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New Moon or Solar Ingress–which matters more?

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New Moon or Solar Ingress? It’s a silly question: because why should you have to choose. But it’s an important one. Here at Mooncircles, New Moons tend to get our attention. But it’s the Sun’s transits that actually inspire the changing qualities of every month. As the “hour hand” on the clock of the year, the Sun sets the seasons. It also guides us into auspicious activity, if we listen. Two days after the Aries New Moon this year, the Sun enters Taurus.

What new initiatives did you launch last month while the Sun was in Aries?

Taurus is the time to develop, stabilize, or complete
whatever you began in the last solar month
.

It was the opening hour of my natural time workshop. Terri, sitting in the front row, frowned. Like many eager to learn about natural cycles, she took lots of notes and asked urgent questions. She wanted to get it right. But when I asked her to apply the solar cycle to her own life, her enthusiasm evaporated. After a few minutes, she raised her hand.

“What if you didn’t start anything in Aries? What should your project be for Taurus? Have you ruined things if you slept through the initiating month?” I understood. I’ve had those years when I didn’t feel particularly daring or heroic in Aries. Yet there was always something that made the Aries month different from the Pisces one before it and the Taurus one that followed. It was this “different thing” that represented each year’s new seed.

I asked Terri a few questions. Eventually it came out that she’d quit smoking during the weeks the Sun was in Aries. “Wow!” The room broke into applause. Terri blushed, though she was still frowning. “Isn’t that pretty pathetic? I mean where’s the heroism in that?”

Quitting cigarettes or eating less sugar or taking a taxi cab for the first time may not seem like heroic acts. Yet the truth is few of us actually march off to war, climb mountains, or rescue cats from burning buildings during the Aries weeks. We don’t launch life-changing initiatives every year. Yet something in us will leap forward. And that’s what we need to honor:  the hero’s archetype—however it is expressing itself through us.

Often, like Terri, we just don’t see it. That day, she needed convincing. A workshop participant raised her hand, “I’ve heard that quitting cigarettes can be as tough as quitting heroin. Sounds heroic to me!” Another offered, “I still remember the day when I quit. That was twenty years ago.  Isn’t something you remember that long an important initiative?”

Terri brightened at the group’s validation. Still, she wasn’t sure what she was supposed to do now in Taurus. “Am I just supposed to keep quitting cigarettes during Taurus? That sounds dumb.” Stabilizing our heroic efforts is important and something the Taurus energy can help us to achieve. But rarely do we plan the Sun’s work. We need to enter each of its twelve months with awareness, willing to see what wants to evolve. That way we can keep ourselves moving in the right direction.

Sometimes when the Sun changes signs all you need to do is ask that very question: “What am I supposed to do now?” It’s like a Zen koan, a question that succeeds not so much by answering it, as by having it in mind. The work of one zodiac season always leads naturally to the work of the next. How that happens is each month’s mystery.” Terri looked dubious, but promised to give me a report.

A month later Terri called. She’d been reading in a spiritual book about the destructive power of negative mind states. She recognized herself in that, in particular, her habit of anger. In fact, after she’d quit smoking, her anger seemed even more pronounced. She watched with horror as she snapped at her children and said cruel words to her mate. She urgently wanted to change, but how? “Then it hit me,” she said. “I had successfully quit smoking. If I could give up that habit, couldn’t I do the same with my angry outbursts?” She went to work with determination and had a profound Taurus season. Several months later, she called me again. “I’m so much happier. Things that would have made me angry just slip by me now. I’ve wanted this for years… and I owe it all to that productive Taurus season. Amazing!”

May the awareness of your Taurus season be just as profound and your activity just as productive!

If you’d like to explore the archetypes in even greater depth, if you like to journal and/or muse on the positions of the Sun and Moon, you may enjoy my enrolling in my Moon workshop (by snail-mail or email). It’s designed to deepen your relationship with the guardians of natural time, the Sun, the Moon, the zodiac… and you!

 

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Aries Energy Meditation

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Energy. Where to find it, how to grow it, how to conserve it, and how to channel it: that is the spiritual task for this month’s New Moon in the sign of impulsive and life-loving Aries.

As all true magicians know, the secret of magic lies in the skillful use of one’s life energy. How you choose to direct your energy is THE force that shapes your life.

To begin your meditation on energy, settle into a quiet, reflective state of mind.  Watch how your breath slowly finds its own rhythm. Let your mind follow this rhythm, like a boat gently riding on the water. Notice how calm you feel. As you breathe, your usual worries and concerns recede and disappear. From this relaxed and expansive space, observe your energy level.  Tune into your inner space.  Does it feel tired, sluggish, or drained? Is it jumping with enthusiasm? Perhaps you’re somewhere in between, enjoying a stable and consistent level of vitality.

After noting your energy level, consider your recent energy flow. Still following the rhythm of your breath, see yourself in a one-woman boat, traveling on an imaginary river that allows you to return to the events of recent days.  Pick a specific point in time, like yesterday, or a month ago, whatever feels relevant. Imagine flying above yourself, so that you have a bird’s eye view of things.  From this vantage, observe how you’ve been moving through time.

What’s your body been doing? On the banks of your river, see the people and places where you have spent your energy.  There’s the house that you cleaned.  Your kids, who needed your help with their homework. There’s the gym, the garden, the living room couch where you may collapse at night. There’s the office, with the computer screen your eyes stare at for hours.  Notice where your physical energy went.

Where and how has your heart been traveling?  See this in the flowing currents of your river.  Is the water fast-moving, full of twists and turns?  Does it splash over rocks and spill onto the shore?  Or is it just trickling through a narrow groove in the dirt?  What has your emotional level been? Consider now the content of your heart’s attention. Has it been noticing nature’s dance of green vitality? Has it been obsessing about a disappointing relationship? Worried about how much you have to do? Excited about something new?

Still traveling in your boat, seeing yourself from above, now investigate where your mind has been going.  See how the water of your imaginary river can become filled with your recent thoughts. What do you see there?  Gossip?  Work thoughts?  Money worries?  Fantasies?   Does your river of thoughts also hold your prayers, dreams, and reflections?

As you’ve been observing your flow, studying where your energy has been going, you’ve likely noticed that some of your precious vitality has been spent wisely, and some of it has been wasted.  For example, you may be tired, but for a good, creative reason. Or, you may feel lots of energy bubbling inside, but it keeps being funneled into meeting other people’s demands. A healthy use of energy opens up new paths to adventure. Negative energy outlets lead us down a dead end road.

What’s a better vision?  Again take your bird’s eye view, and see yourself again in your one-woman boat, relaxing on the currents of your breath, only now, you are flowing into your future.  On the shore, in the distance ahead, see where you’d like to land 29 days from now.  What changes would you like to see by the Taurus New Moon?

Once you have clarified your destination, see yourself flowing toward it, with confidence and ease. If you want to write a book, see your boat flowing into this activity with love and enthusiasm. You may envision a garden blossoming, a job expanding, understanding deepen, or a relationship flourish. Notice how fresh is the water of your future river. It’s sparkling with vitality and joy. On the banks of your future river, nature is bursting with life force. Feel yourself a part of this energy.  See yourself making the choices that reflect a wiser use of your vitality. Let it take you towards the realization of your dreams.

Remember: you are the magician of your own life. Wherever you choose to put your precious energy, there magic–black or white, positive or negative–will surely happen. With the Aries New Moon, your life begins anew all over again.

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Standing Under the Full Moon

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For years this terma escaped me. For most of my life I’ve stood awkwardly under the Full Moon, trying to lasso it with my factory mind, from the neck up, vaguely wanting something from it, and feeling unsuccessful. Then sometime, as is true—when the time was right—after years of trying, I stumbled into it: a way of standing under the Moon that felt sensitive and satisfying. No mumbo jumbo necessary. That’s because thinking about it–even beautiful concepts like the Moon is earth’s oldest temple holding the potency of countless prayers since the dawn of time–doesn’t help. You have to sink your awareness lower than mind: this is what it means to get naked under the Moon.  It’s a relaxed and spacious state. Once you locate it, you can snap into it again, instantly. And just as easily, you can snap out. So that’s the value of this universal terma: The Moon becomes a bell whose ringing brings you into the field of the Mother, where body and soul can quietly drink. But don’t think about it. Just enjoy.

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