Watercolor by Isobel Lillian Gloag
The times are urgent. We must slow down.” –African proverb.
What are you doing these days to stay relaxed and connected? Lately I’ve been taking afternoon siestas in the garden (when it’s not raining), where I created a sitting area. Stretching out my bare legs in the warm sun, I close my eyes and release all tension as the songbirds lull me into oneness with nature. It’s helping me remember that all is well, no matter how things might appear.
I got the idea from Maddy Harland, editor and co-founder of Permaculture Magazine, who loves sitting in her abundant garden in the southern UK. “I do it every day to attune all my senses,” she told Kosha Joubert in the GEN Communities for Future Summit earlier this year, and she recommends we do the same. “Feeling this joy of being immersed in the land reactivates a deep part of our DNA,” she explains. “It reminds us that we live in an interconnected web of life, and as we expand into that consciousness, something deep within us changes. It gives us a sense of our own well-being and enhances our capacity to act constructively.”
This sage advice is even more applicable now that most of us are stuck at home, trying to hold things together and nervously wondering what’s next. With the fiftieth anniversary of Earth Day at hand, it’s a good time to remember that although we won’t be able to gather in person this year, Mama Earth needs us more than ever. Re-learning how to relate to our planet as a living being is more crucial than it’s ever been, given that so many of our ecosystems are gravely threatened.
The upcoming Taurus New Moon (April 22, 7:25 p.m. PDT) happens in the earth sign most connected to nature. And, the Sun and Moon join Uranus, agent of awakening and change. There’s a quickening in the air, which could either intensify anxieties or help us cut through them, especially related to Taurean matters such as money, values, nature and the body. With Uranus involved, some kind of letting go may be required. But as we divest ourselves of non-essentials in a quest to stay healthy and secure, we create space in which to awaken to our inner wisdom. The Sun, Moon and Uranus will square Saturn in Aquarius at this New Moon. This kicks off a cycle of progressive change for the next two years, when we’ll need to stay patient and focus on what matters most, and commit anew to Gaia. Uranus and Aquarius are associated with the angelic realm, so it’s safe to say that higher beings are working overtime on our behalf right now, and innovative ideas and solutions are available for the asking.
Since it looks like we’ll be “sheltering in place” for most of this year, as the pandemic-prone Jupiter-Pluto conjunction continues through November (although there may be a temporary reprieve around June) I asked Maddy Harland for her take on things now that Covid-19 has entered the picture.
She replied, “I hope that one of the positive outcomes is that people are questioning their lives – the work they do, their ecological impact, and the effect the human race is having on the planet. Covid is not an isolated event but an indicator of how we live in ecological imbalance, consuming at a frenetic pace in over-populated regions, in a polluted environment. It is forcing a pause and I hope an opportunity to reframe our economic system. People are also rediscovering their gardens and the pleasure of growing food, exercise and being outside in clean air. They are discovering the value of neighbours and their local community. We know that when we love something we tend to look after it. Let’s hope we are learning collectively to love and appreciate each other and our planet more and that this shift will make us review our whole lives and how we engage with the world.”
So here’s to the abundant Taurus New Moon, which connects us to the life-giving power of nature. You might want to honor the New Moon by starting a daily practice of sitting in your garden, or any place where you can hear the birds and feel the sunshine. Allow nature to awaken new life in you! And if you need some guidance and understanding, please let me know.