Journey to your River of Life

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We are now firmly into the waxing crescent energy of the new lunar month. Your Yin intuitive New Moon energy is still powerful but starting to wane, and you are likely feeling an increasing Yang energy as we move towards the Full Moon.

We are also now fully flowing with Autumn energies, associated with the element of Water. And even though we are in Libra with its balance of head and heart, change — with its flow and strong emotions — may feel like a constant at this strong turning point in the year.

This brings us to our word for the month. Currents… the currents in the River of your life in all their forms… currents of energy, currents of emotion, back currents, rapids, stagnant pools, deep stirrings, surface ripples, floating with or fighting the current.

As this month progresses, bring your awareness to the currents in your life and take some time now to journey or meditate on the River of Your Life…. taking note of its appearance and course:

🌙 What does the River of your Life look like? Is it deep? Shallow? Wide? Narrow? Calm? Turbulent? Does it have steep banks or perhaps a sandy beach?

🌙 What does the landscape around your River look like? Forest? Arid lands? Prairies? Mountains?

🌙 What is the course of your River? Does it flow across a continent… or perhaps smaller, starting from a spring and flowing into a nearby lake or sea?

🌙 If you have journeyed to your River before, does it appear differently now? If so, how?

And now consider these Soul Questions:

🌙 What does your River tell you about your current (!) situation?

🌙 What is now coming to the surface of your River that calls for your awareness?

🌙 What happens when you stay in flow with your River?

🌙  Where the dams in your River?

🌙 What happens when you stay in flow with your River?

It’s now time to take those New Moon musings and River meditations and commit to action for this month’s lunar journey.

Remember that you don’t have to change the world this month, or commit to climbing Everest. You can commit to something meaningful that might be a small step, such as choosing to connect with Nature every day… to exercise more… to add more fresh foods into your diet… to reconnect with a friend you haven’t seen in a while… to complete a project you’ve put off… to read a book.

Whatever you do, let the currents of your River flow freely and strongly in your life.

Do I change like a river, widening and deepening, eddying back on myself sometimes, bursting my banks sometimes when there’s too much water, too much life in me, and sometimes dried up from lack of rain? Will the I that is me grow and widen and deepen? Or will I stagnate and become an arid riverbed? Will I allow people to dam me up and confine me to wall so that I flow only where they want? Will I allow them to turn me into a canal to use for they own purposes? Or will I make sure I flow freely, coursing my way through the land and ploughing a valley of my own?
― Aidan Chambers, from “This is All: The Pillow Book of Cordelia Kenn”


 

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Shine On, Harvest Moon Child

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What is it about a Harvest Moon that inspires songwriters and lovers… from the old vaudevilles songs such as “Shine On Harvest Moon” to our own Neil Young’s “Harvest Moon”?

I know that I love gazing at the night sky when the moon if full… so warm, inviting and powerful.

Our beautiful Luna is almost at her peak, and comes into her full glory on Friday September 16th at 19:05 UTC (12:05 PM Pacific time, 3:05 PM Eastern time) in Pisces. Pisces can bring in deep loving and romantic feelings… time for a little mooning and spooning! And just the thought of the Harvest Moon got me singing some of my favourite tunes!

“So shine on, shine on harvest moon, for me and my gal.”
– Nora Bayes and Jack Norworth

“Because I’m still in love with you
I want to see you dance again
Because I’m still in love with you
On this harvest moon”
– written by Neal Young 

We have another astronomical event the same day, a bit earlier at 16:54 UTC (9:54 AM Pacific Time) – a penumbral lunar eclipse which will be visible in the Americas. This serves to amplify the elements of the Full Moon… more emotion, more awareness, more wisdom.

Unfortunately, for us Left Coast dwellers, the Moon will actually be below the horizon at the time of the eclipse, so we will not be able to see it … but we will be able to sense it!

For those living in regions where the moon will be above the horizon, know that a penumbral eclipse is fairly subtle, as only the outer shadow of Mother Earth reaches the Moon. You may not even notice this eclipse, or just notice that the Moon looks a little darker.

The Full Moon also marks mid-point through our monthly journey with the moon, and it’s time to review Week 3 of our Medicine Wheel readings. In Week 3, the direction is West and the Element is Water… a wonderful synchronicity with the approaching Autumn here in the Northern Hemisphere, which has the same correspondence, and with the Pisces water energy.

Soul Question for Week 3: “What is Flourishing?”

I like to meditate on the weekly  Medicine Wheel question based on the cards I drew for the month and the monthly theme, which is Balance and Harmony. Take a moment to meditate on how Balance and Harmony are flourishing for you at this time, especially as we approach the Yang energy of the Full Moon which is expansive, uplifting, powerful…. hopefully, your own power is experiencing the same surge.

Pisces is a Water Element, so emotions may be running even more deeply and powerfully at this time. But the Sun is in the opposite sign of Virgo… very grounded, analytical, observant. How are you maintaining the balance between the Water and Earth elements of this Sun and Moon?

If you have a release ritual planned for this Full Moon (perhaps a gentle water release?), try to schedule it during this powerful period of the Eclipse Full Moon for an even more transformative release.

And remember to Shine On, Harvest Moon Child!

 


 

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Releasing with Fire in the Blackberry Moon

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There are so many names for the Full Moon in August ranging from the names of First Nations people — Fruit Moon (Cherokee) and Sturgeon Moon (Algonquian) — to those of England (the Grain Moon and the Corn Moon), and the Lightning Moon as named by some Neopagans.

Whatever we call it, I love these Moon names. They mean so much more than just “the August Full Moon” because they relate to the people who named them, to their environment, to their culture, to what they are growing or harvesting.

I often think of August as the Abundance Moon or the Canning Moon. The first of the three Celtic harvest feasts was celebrated in early August (Lughnasadh, aka Lammas). The fields and trees are ripe with fruits, grains, vegetables, and herbs. There is the abundance of Mother Earth everywhere, and it’s time to start harvesting that bounty and start preparing it to last until the next spring: canning and preserving, making jams, and creating medicinal tinctures and infusions to combat our winter ailments.

This year, I’m calling it the Blackberry Full Moon, because I am now foraging that luscious fruit and delicious leaves and starting all kinds of blackberry preparations – tinctures, infused brandies, jams, teas, and using the vines for basket-making.

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The Full Moon Elements

The Full Moon, which arrived at 2:26 AM Pacific Time this morning, and was in Aquarius on arrival, an Air sign. Our Sun is in Leo and those of us in the Northern Hemisphere are definitely feeling the summer heat as well! But, the Moon moved very quickly into a new energy, Pisces, at 9:34 Pacific Time and will be there for the remainder of the Full Moon period.

The Full Moon is at its peak of Yang energy, fully emerged and expansive, reflecting the light of the Leo Sun.

Bask in the Moon Light!

Stand up for who you are!

And connect with that Fire, that passion, that energy, to help you finalize and manifest your projects for the month.

Fire needs Air to thrive and burn, but you may feel somewhat out of balance with this energetic elements, and with the Air and Fire pulling you in different ways.

The Air/Aquarius element can show up in many ways….I’ve been chatting like mad in this Air energy (literally, filling the Air with words and laughter). Air can be inventive, curious, heady but also restless… Air drives us to find answers, get data, solve problems. Air might need the balance of Earth to convert those brilliant Air ideas into something solid, to manifest and ground them.

The Fire/Leo element is also very Yang… outward energy, inspiring, emotional, dramatic, and at times extreme. Fire is transforming. Fire is passion… and sometimes does not a very strong filter or tact!

If both your Air and Fire elements are excessive, consider bringing a little Water energy or Earth energy into your Full Moon ritual for balance. But if you truly want to release, use that Air and Fire energy to consume that which no longer serves you…. convert it to ash and blow its particles to the wind.

Soul Questions for the Full Moon in Week 3

In the Medicine Wheel reading that we began on the New Moon, we have now reached the Direction of The West and now ask the question “What is transforming?”… How perfect for that Fire energy of Leo!

Correspondences For Week Three 
Direction: West
Element: Water
Soul Question: What is flourishing?

At this Full Moon, I also invite you to really connect with your own elements – the Air, Fire, Water and Earth within you – because they are all strongly influencing this part of the journey. Look at each element separately and then how they relate together, by asking further Soul Questions such as:

  • What is in balance?
  • Which element(s) might need a little calming influence?
  • How can you use those elemental energies best this month, as you continue the journey you started with Grandmother Moon?
  • What do you have to address as we move forward towards Mabon (the Autumn Equinox) with brings us to a balance point in the year: the Equinox, where Day and Night are equal, where the Yin and the Yang of the Earth are in balance?

For this Full Moon, I would suggest using Air and Fire in your release ceremony – smudging with sage or incense followed by a release ritual using the Fire element.

Your Fire Release Ritual

Last year, I shared a simple Full Moon Fire Release ritual on this blog, and you can find it here.

This ritual can be done in Circle with others, or as a solitary practitioner.


The image used in the Full Moon in Aquarius photo is titled
One More Gift For The Full Moon” and was created by LadyNevada
and shared for the public on DeskTopNexus.


 

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Find your coeur-age with the New Moon in Leo

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Another month, another new journey with Grandmother Moon!

The New Moon in Leo arrived today, Tuesday, August 2nd at 20:44 UTC (1:44 PM Pacific Time here in Vancouver).

Leo is a sign of courage and the heart (“coeur“-age), which is my personal theme for the month. Hopefully you will find something that resonates on your journey this month, or you could simply adopt this theme.

Coeur-age: acting from the heart, living from the heart, speaking from the heart.

The New Moon in Leo brings us fire, creativity, passion, sexuality and leadership. After all, Lion is King of the Jungle! And remember that leadership does not always mean leading other folks… it’s about taking leadership in our own life too.

This is the month to honour your Heart: your friendships, your relationships with loved ones and — most importantly — your relationship with your Self. Show your Self a little love this month. Have a “Be Kind to ME Day” every day!

Soul Questions for the New Moon

SM 800 x 800-5As you start your New Moon journey, I invite you to begin the month by meditating on your Heart Chakra and contemplate all things heart.

If you need help creating your own Soul Questions for the month, ponder on the one below. If they resonate with you, meditate on them and note your thoughts in your journal… or customize so that they are even more personal.

  • How do you honour your Heart and your Self?
  • How do you honour others in relationships such as your partner, your friends, your family?
  • Where (and when) might you need to raise your awareness about self-care, self-love?
  • And let’s not ignore the Shadow side of love :
    • Where and when do you  love too much, give too much?
    • Where and when do you expect too much or need too much?

And to make this process even more powerful, consider taking a journey with your guides or allies and asking for their sage wisdom to support your explorations.

In the spirit of self-care— and honouring the extreme Yin energy of the New Moon — do not rush into your Soul Work for the month immediately… gently start the planting those  the seeds of reflection.

The New Moon is with us for about three days, so focus on creating your goals and intentions for the month by the first hint of light in the waxing crescent in a couple of days.


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Third Quarter in Taurus: Harvest, Homecoming, Gratitude and Reflection

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The Third Quarter of the Moon arrived today, July 26th, at 4:02 PM Pacific Time, putting us firmly on the return path of our monthly journey with Grandmother Moon.

In many ways, the lunar Third Quarter is akin to Autumn in the solar year. We planted our new seeds at the new waxing moon, grew them in the first quarter and saw them bloom at the Full Moon. And now, the Moon’s light is diminishing, its energy is becoming quieter, more introspective, more yin. We are now reaping the harvest that we started at the beginning of the cycle and are preparing for the completion of our journey.

And what do we associate with the Harvest? Thanksgiving! Gratitude!

At this time of year, my Celtic ancestors were preparing for the first harvest of the year, Lughnasadh (also known as Lammas, and the Irish Gaelic name for the month of August), which “officially” arrives on August 1st. In Celtic traditions, the day is measured sundown to sundown, so Lughnasadh celebrations start the evening of July 31st. I will be posting more about Lughnasadh in the coming days.

And like other harvest celebrations around the world, at Lughnasadh we give thanks and gratitude. So, we have a double harvest this week… and it’s definitely time to start getting ready for your Lughnasadh celebrations.

Elements in the Third Quarter Moon

The Moon passes through all the zodiac signs as it goes through its cycle and this morning moved into Taurus: an Earth-element sign which suggests patience but also resting and getting cozy, taking one’s time and conserving one’s energy. Perfect for the waning energy of the Moon!

Many people associate the Four Elements with the Moon’s journey as we do with the seasons and the directions, but – as far as I can see – there is no universal agreement on which element fits each phase.

Some people stand by this association:

1st quarter (New Moon, Waxing Crescent): Air
2nd quarter (Waxing Quarter/Gibbous to Full Moon): Fire
3rd quarter (Full Moon through Waning Gibbous): Earth
4th Quarter (Waning Crescent through Dark Moon): Water

And others use this association, going through all four elements in the waxing phase and the waning phase:

New Moon = Earth
Crescent Moon = Water
First Quarter = Fire
Waxing Gibbous = Air
Full Moon = Fire
Waning Gibbous = Water
Third Quarter = Earth
Balsamic Moon= Air

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Image Source: gurastro.blogspot.ca

While others see us going through all four elements in each phase but with a slightly different order!

1. new moon = water
2. crescent = air
3. first quarter = fire
4. gibbous = earth
5. full moon = earth
6. disseminating = fire
7. last quarter = air
8. balsamic = water

Working with the Air Element

Using these correspondences, we can choose to work with either (or both!) Air or Earth. Choose what works best for you. That being said, if we look at Air (the realm of thought) as our element, its message is in many ways similar to the autumnal Earth message…. thinking, patience, reorientation, review.

If you have been journaling your feelings and actions throughout the month, take some time to consider how you feel in this phase of the Moon’s journey:

  • your emotions
  • your work and sleep patterns
  • your energy levels
  • your progress on your goals
  • and, of course, what you are grateful for

Focus on living through gratitude in the third quarter… taking time to “smell the roses”, noticing the beauty around you and all that brings joy and abundance to your life: friendship, health, family, your gifts and abilities, love, your resources and abundance… I’m sure there is something to be grateful for.

Working with the Earth element

If the Earth element correspondence resonates with you for this quarter, think about incorporating Earth elements into your daily activities:

  • drinking herbal teas
  • taking a bath with sea salts and essential oils
  • nurturing your plants
  • spending time in the forest or in Nature
  • light a salt lamp to purify the air

If the Air element correspondence resonates with you for this quarter, use that element even more:

  • enhance your meditative practice with deep breathing meditation
  • use your voice – sing:)
  • keep your mind active with journaling, reading, and learning

Take some time to journal what you are thankful for this month.

 


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Tending your Summer heart Fires

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☀️🌞❤️ Summer Fire ❤️🌞☀️

I love the changing of the seasons and what each brings to us in this beautiful cycle of life throughout the year… From Spring’s fresh growth and fertility through to Winter’s rest, followed by the renewal of Spring again.

Summer is with us now and although my Celtic body does not love the high heat of summer, I appreciate what it brings to us — the long days and the nourishing energy of Father Sun, enabling growth and abundance.

Summer is associated with the Fire Element. And we are also in the Year of the Fire Monkey. That’s a lot of fire! Fire is such a passionate element — mercurial, at times hard to control, and all-consuming.

Fire is also associated with the heart (it’s the Yin Organ of the Fire Element in Traditional Chinese Medicine) so be sure to balance all that Fire energy and not let it shift to excess. And be sure to drink plenty of fluids to balance against the heat and Fire.

And yet, Fire has many different manifestations. Like people, each fire is different. There are the slow burning embers, warm and comforting. There are the wild, dangerous and powerful forest fires that quickly destroy everything in their path. There are the crackling aromatic flames in a campfire or firepit that serve to unite us in circle and community, a hearth for cooking, warming and sharing (and I love how the word heart is part of the word hearth!)

How are you tending YOUR fire? Your heart?

Nurture your fire with kindling (healthy food as fuel), and give it air to breathe and to sustain the flame (exercise and rest!). When it burns too bright or quickly, gently rein it in or damper it slightly. And do not let it burn out or extinguish from lack of attention and care.

Honour your heart and the wisdom it gives you — feel it, connect with it, journey with it… feel the love for your Self and others, its passions…. and enjoy the bounty and possibilities of Summer and Fire.

And show Father Sky a little gratitude❤️


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Choosing your Journey for the Gemini New Moon

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Tonight at 7:59 PM Pacific Time, Grandmother Moon starts a new monthly cycle with the New Moon in Gemini.

I love the New Moon and all it brings — rebirth, new beginnings, new journeys, new insights. Each lunar month we are given a gift:  the opportunity to explore, change and transform in our own Hero’s or Heroine’s Journey.

The Gemini New Moon Influence
Gemini is an Air element sign, the element of insight from practicality through to vision, creativity, and inspiration. Tap into that energy to enhance your efforts and planning this month. Air governs the lungs and breath (inspiration once again!), so also supports communication. This will definitely help you find your voice and speak your truth.

Gemini — also known as The Twins — speaks to our inherent duality. We each have both Yin and Yang energies within us, the Divine Feminine AND the Divine Masculine. To have true balance and harmony in our Self, it is important to appreciate and manifest both elements. We can hold and express both, juggling the push-pull of these energies, living with contradiction and paradox… and being okay with that!

Soul Questions for the New Moon

I invite you to explore your own duality this month in your Soul Work or meditations — the paradox of living with and acting from both the Divine Masculine and Divine Feminine within… and yet still living in balance and harmony. Or do you…?

When do you more naturally draw from one versus the other? Can you easily express both your Divine Feminine and Divine Masculine? And do you recognize the differences?

Yin, and the Divine Feminine,  is Earth, Water, Moon… receptive, inward, cool, contracting, descending, nurturing, flexible and intuitive.

Yang, and the Divine Masculine, is Fire, Air, Sun… active, outward, hot, expanding, rising, protecting, stable and rational.

In your New Moon ritual or meditation, consider these Soul Questions around duality:

  • When do you go with the flow, accepting the natural rhythms of life, and when do you try to control and influence conditions around you?
  • When do you act from intuition and when do you choose based on “just the facts” ?
  • How comfortable are you with your Divine Feminine qualities? Your Divine Masculine qualities?
  • When do you follow the Hero’s Journey (going out into the world and manifesting change there) and when do you pursue the Heroine’s Journey (going deep into one’s Self and transforming from within)?
  • Looking forward, what might you do differently this month to find or maintain harmony and balance. How might you honour both the Divine Masculine and the Divine Feminine?

And as you plan out your month and what you will manifest, consider which journey and process will help you accomplish your goals — the Hero’s Journey or the Heroine’s Journey. You have both in your spiritual tool box… use what will best support you this month.

The Hero’s Journey or the (S)hero’s Journey?

We are all likely familiar with the Hero’s Journey, as described by Joseph Campbell — a Call to Adventure, resulting in epic archetypal mythological quests such as those of Don Quixote, the Knights of the Round Table, Odysseus or even Luke Skywalker. The Hero leaves his home and searches in the outside word for that which has been lost or that which is necessary for his tribe to survive.

But what about the “(S)hero”? What is the Heroine’s Journey? Just as Yang is outward and Yin is inward, the Heroine’s journey is not to the outside world but is a journey inward, to the core of her Self… thereby changing her inner world and the world around her. Hmmm… to me, this does sound like a shamanic journey!

Maureen Murdock, author of the 1990 classic The Heroine’s Journey, was a student of Joseph Campbell and, per her website, wrote her book “as a response to Joseph Campbell’s book on the hero’s journey. Maureen, who was a student of Campbell’s work, felt his model did not address the specific psycho-spiritual journey of contemporary women.”

Murdock describes the differences this way:

“The hero’s journey is up and out — with a big splash — to the light, while the heroine’s journey is down and in — into the body, into the metaphorical cave, to the Black Madonna.”

The Hero saves the world…. the Heroine, the (S)hero, changes the world and her Self.

Which journey will you choose this month?

 


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