August New Moon
by Sarah Gottesdiener·
New Moon Expansion
“Three things cannot be long hidden: the sun, the moon, and the truth.” — Buddha
Happy Saturday! Happy 11th day of August! Happy New Moon Solar Eclipse! This is our third solar eclipse of 2018, and our final eclipse of the current eclipse season. For some of you reading this, you may have undergone some shake-ups, shake-downs, some ego deaths all around. These changes may have been internal—emotional patterns coming up to be released, stronger desires being built in the corridors of your strong heart. More decisions made in the spirit of letting your true soul shine. These changes may have been external—people leaving, situations coming to an end. Remember to let the dust settle. Remember that it takes time to make shifts. You may need some time to catch up to your new self and your intentions. Have you been giving yourself enough time to process? Have you been allowing the newness to just be, whether raw or roughly howling, tenderly sparkling or almost unbelievable in its goodness?
A solar eclipse is when the Moon is between the Sun and the Earth. The Moon blocks the light of the Sun from getting to Earth. Eclipses are total (like the one North America experienced last August) or partial; this eclipse is partial, which is more common. It will only be visible from northern North America, Greenland, Northern Europe, and Northern Asia.
This solar eclipse happening today, on this Saturn-ruled Saturday, is in Leo, a fire sign.The themes that we will be talking about will be solar power, consciousness, energy, and the embodiment of joy, pleasure, and fun. It is Summer, we shine bright, the goldenrod has come into her full bloom, and the chrysanthemums waving in the breeze nudge us to take a longer lunch break. It is long glittering days and warm humid nights,sitting on porch steps talking about the meaning of life, crickets providing the soundtrack.
August reminds us that there is nothing more magical than simply living life. Enjoyment,and pleasure are easily attained in August. The light is so very present in our every day. Leo, the lion, takes its stage on the night sky. The fifth sign of the zodiac, the archetype of Leo is generally associated with royalty, deep self-love, creativity, performance, and a flair for drama. Leo is a sign of successful self-realization, which is obtained through childlike joy, bolstered by bravery, and imparted with playful radiance. A cause of stress or sadness for us during Leo season might be not feeling appreciated enough or that our gifts and talents are being ignored. Having to be in situations where we aren’t allowed to shine, to be adored, or to have fun is also cause for tension. Question if you are allowing yourself to soak up all the light and warmth you require. Take responsibility for expressing your gifts and talents outwardly. If you aren’t beaming your rays of radiance out into the world regularly, make a promise with yourself to do so more frequently at this New Moon.
While most modern-day practitioners associate Leo with the lion, ancient Babylonians named this constellation Ursula, the Lioness (Barbara Walker, The Women’s Dictionary of Symbols and Signs. New York: HarperCollins, 1998, p. 291). It is the lioness, not the lion, that does all the hunting for their pride. Lionesses hunt in groups. A pride of lions consists of many related females, was well as their offspring, along with a few unrelated males. Female lions live together for life. There is no rank hierarchy; they depend on one another to survive. Even though they are certainly busy raising children, hunting for food, and protecting and nourishing their young, female lions still find time to play, while male lions give up play along with their youth. During this New Moon weekend, do you need to get together with some of your most hilarious and alive friends and make magic?
Leo is ruled by the Sun. The Sun, the center of our universe, is about halfway through its life, at an impressive 4.5 billion years old. The Sun is one of 200 plus billion stars in ourspiral galaxy, and while it isn’t even the largest, 1 million Earths could fit into one Sun. The Sun is over 92 million miles away from us, yet we can feel its rays on our skin, the concrete, on our phones left out too long in the grass. Compare that to the Moon, which is so, so much closer: only 238,900 miles away from us, an easy ride on a rocket ship. Compare that to the width of the Earth: 24,8120 million miles, all the way around, from pole to pole. When we consider that scale, when we consider us in the petri dish of the universe, it sort of makes the not so important thoughts clogging up our brains not so, well, important, doesn’t it?
Let this New Moon show you where to align your mind.
The Sun’s energy powers our weather, our water cycle, and, alongside our other elements, makes life on terra firma possible. The Sun’s inward and outward pressure, created by fusion reactions, is balanced, which results in a steady stream of energy coming our way. Solar power is powerful indeed. More power from the Sun hits the Earth in a single hour than we use in an entire year.
The Sun can act as a metaphor for our own energy, our own seats of consciousness. The Sun can be bright and generous, yet if left unconscious or unaware, its presence can burn us. The Sun creates shadows—places for us to check our perceptions and truths, or places to be scared by what we do not understand. The Sun warms us, gives us enough brightness to pass on to others, has enough energy to support many—or can be blinding if stared at it too long. It is all how we use and choose to work with our energy that determines much of the outcome of our fate.
The Sun card in the Tarot is one of evolved consciousness, engagement with life, and balanced alignment between embodiment and one’s own higher power. It is a card of new beginnings and rebirth. This card is on the last line of the Major Arcana: the line of the superconscious. The superconscious has been called many things all over the planet throughout history. It has been called source, universal mind, the collective consciousness, messages from spirit, our higher self, universal consciousness, our most aligned alignment. It is seeing or feeling both form and the energy behind that form: the energy that links us all.
Connecting with our inspiration, our mindfulness, and our consciousness is key to changing our realities. Our consciousness is only about 5%-10% of our brain power, but accessing it and using it to train our subconscious can drastically alter our narratives and completely flip the script we are automatically running on. Our subconscious is the soil that grows the seeds. Our consciousness is the Sun that guides the seeds into the kind of growth we want. Working with retraining negative thought patterns that hinder us from expressing ourselves fully is key to living our best lives.
Do not let your inner critique scream at you all the reasons not to try:
It is too late. As long as you are alive, it is never too late.
I’ll never get there. There is no there, there.*
There is only here. And here is the present, and we all know the present is a gift.
Utilizing our consciousness comes in a number of different ways. First, we mindfully observe our thought forms and our behaviors. We clearly define what it is we would like more of, and we correspond our consciousness to this reality. We tell our thoughts—our consciousness—to stay in patterns of this correspondence. When fear, anxiety, or thoughts that are not in tune with our desired consciousness bubble up—and they will, to the tune of hundreds, if not thousands of times a day—we shift away from them and refocus on what we do want: on what thoughts we would like to think, on what ways we would like to feel. It isn’t so much spending time trying to fix what we don’t want, as it is filling ourselves up, as much as possible, energetically and consciously, with our true self and our most desired thoughts and feelings. We change our belief systems about who we are, and what we are capable of being in this way.
After all, belief systems are just thoughts we think over and over.
To be clear: this is not an ask to ignore pain, suffering, or challenging experiences that come up for ourselves and others. It is an invitation to feel them deeply, look to the truth of the situation, and take full accountability and responsibility to ourselves and others. Then we can move through them. We can detach and observe our patterns and our thought forms. We can see the source of them, and respond accordingly. We are no longer trapped in the cycle of reacting, and causing more pain to ourselves and others. This is how we transform. This is how we evolve.
The Strength card, the card that corresponds to Leo, speaks to this transformation. This card reassures that we have what it takes to look into the belly of the beast and come out stronger for having passed our hand through the flame. This is a card of compassion, of finding source, pleasure, and completion through raw and authentic looking and experience. The figure in the card is listening as much as she’s making peace with the lion. She’s happy to breathe in the same air, knowing she can learn from the wildness she is engaging with.
There’s a famous saying: “Don’t believe everything you think.” We can see this statement is certainly helpful when we consider thoughts we have about ourselves that are not helpful to us, or that are downright abusive. Our world is certainly a world that enforces thinking that is harmful to our self-esteem and our self-love. Once we acknowledge that we are more than our thoughts, so much so that we can observe, redirect, and direct them again, over and over, we get free. We can be the child on the horse jumping over the walls of self-doubt racing forward in the light. We can be the lion roar and the silky smile that soothes the scary beast. Knowing that so much of our existence takes place in our mind, with our consciousness, and that we can shift and change our thoughts with practice and focus is freeing. We can protect our energy, in part, by using it in exciting, truthful, invigorating ways.
There’s another aspect here to bring up at this Solar Eclipse. And this is the part about taking risks. Being brave. Living a more exciting life. Stepping into more thrill. This solar eclipse wants to remind us that there is no reward without risk. Every entrepreneur, every person who walked up to another cute person and introduced themselves, every artist and maker, every person who offered an idea to the group, every weirdo and witch, every lioness and horse rider alike can attest to the fact that there is no reward without risk. Where are you ready to take risks in the coming days, weeks, months?
This eclipse wants us to remember that it is time to step into the light, time to be vulnerable, time to be brave as never before. This eclipse asks us to take the shadows and the hardship and really look at them, learn from them, and burn them up. Say I’m sorry and I love you and I wish I had done better and this is how I will do better but my shame has only been an anvil around my neck so far and its one I’m shedding because I didn’t actually even put it there and those ghosts are gone and I’m here with my heart out instead, I’m here running up this hill, dirt stained knees, windblown cheeks, with precious gemstones of my dreams in my hands and fortune cookie messages from the future in my pockets and I’m ready to take hold of my life for myself and for everyone I know and love and for the greater good of the planet, the Moon, the stars, and the Sun herself. Because this is it. This moment is all we have. Our awareness is our key and our embodied joy is our keyhole.
Excerpt is from Many Moons 2018 Vol 2. Buy your copy here.
*This is a quote from Gertrude Stein.