Solar Eclipse Energy

I don't know about you, but I have been feeling some strong energy shifts since the summer solstice on June 21, the full moon lunar eclipse on June 26, and the solar eclipse/new moon in Cancer that's coming up on July 11. For me it's stirred up creative energy and fiery passion to get things done and take some leaps in my work both as a therapist and an artist and writer. I have always been interested in astrology and the psychological understanding that going into the depths can bring. I seem to approach it on more of an intuitive level and don't always understand the mechanics or details of it. I think that's typical of my psychological type (INFP or Intuitive/Feeling type) as well as my Aquarian sun, Scorpio rising, and Sagittarius moon. All I know is I'm feeling something and I'm noticing bubbling and rumblings. I have so much creative energy I don't know what to do with it--so many ideas and projects, not enough time--because I also crave rest, a need to feel grounded and balanced. I'm not quite sure what to make of it all yet.

A week ago I went to a SoulCollage® facilitator gathering of 12 wonderful women (and one soulful man) in Charlotte that allowed me to play and make cards that had been percolating inside and needed to be birthed into being. The two solar eclipse cards seen here came out of that. Since learning about all of this cosmic movement taking place -- a grand cardinal cross of 7 planets on or about July 14 -- and the effects of this energy apparently lasting several weeks, I noticed some fear coming up. This is going to be a big planetary shift, I'm hearing, so fasten your seat belts.

The first image I gravitated to when I saw it was of Green Tara, a Buddhist protector goddess. Once I combined her with solar eclipse images and was able to see or sense the bigger picture, I felt the fear melt away. I saw this fear as shadow material that I was feeling on a deep level, but did not need or want to stay in. Fear rarely serves us.

Connecting with the divine feminine that Tara represents helped me feel centered again, enveloped in her good graces and compassion. The message to me was: What do I need to know? Both awareness/knowledge and love are the antidotes to fear. Just creating the image made me feel that I was loving and caring for myself by invoking her protection for all of us. So what do I need to know about this time?

Here's what I've gleaned from reading and listening to others speak about this Big Cosmic Event that starts with the Solar Eclipse on the 11th:

Eclipses, in general, allow us to see what has been hidden from us (Me and My Shadow), to review what has come before (our lessons, what is coming to fruition), and to let go of what no longer serves us so that the alchemical change and rebirth can occur.

As Astrologer Steve Nelson puts it, "A solar eclipse is positively transformative as we learn to detach from what is breaking down and shift attention to what is breaking through... The more shadow patterns are transformed the more energy is freed for new creation. So continues the cycle of death and rebirth, destruction and recreation. The world is ready for change. A total eclipse of the Sun is an opportunity to change whatever we wish at the deepest level. All that's needed is to be still, slow down, and go within to the creative source of transformation in this special time."

Astrologer Rhea Wolf says: "Eclipse cycles happen on the Full and New Moons approximately every six months and act as a kind of energetic bridge through time. We may find ourselves coming to terms with actions we took six months ago, and can even find resolution or illumination about events in our lives from 19 years ago - the last time these specific eclipses would have occurred. Eclipses always heighten and intensify our world. They are like super-charged Full and New Moons. This month, we have the opportunity to create intentions related to the energy of Cancer and Capricorn, setting the stage for the coming six months and beyond. Some general advice for the eclipse season is to leave some open space in your schedule. Eclipse periods are full of the unexpected - projects, people, opportunities and ideas show up suddenly. If you already have a packed calendar, you will definitely get exhausted by the extra attention these surprises require."

And finally, Astrologer Jessica Murray explains, "The key configuration in the sky this summer is the Grand Cross, the most stressful configuration in astrology. With Saturn, Uranus and Pluto in a T-square, and the quickly moving lights in Cancer supplying the fourth piece of the puzzle, the energy we are feeling is tense and insistent. We may miss the mellowness of previous summers; we may feel nostalgic for years past, when the world wasn’t being blindsided by critical issues peaking all at once, as it is now. But this summer’s stresses are exactly what humanity needs to motivate phenomenal bursts of growth.

The solar eclipse on July 11 puts the spotlight on Cancer, the sign of mothering, empathy, caring, and connectedness. On a personal level, it highlights the importance of simple kindness in our life. High-level Cancer inspires us to treat every sentient creature as if it was a treasured child of the universe. To relate in a Cancerian style is, at its best, to open our hearts towards every being as if they were as bonded to us as a treasured family member.

On a global level, the Cancer archetype is putting the emphasis on our connectedness with Mother Earth whose ongoing defilement by the oil industry raises many troubling questions. Blaming the rapacious profiteers of Big Oil (Pluto in Capricorn is one corner of the Cross) is easy enough to do; as is pointing the finger at the corrupt government officials whose failure to protect our environment can be traced to deep-pocket corporations (Saturn square Pluto).

But the deeper we look at this spring and summer’s transits, the more likely we are to find our own oily footprints in the sand. There are many stories hidden within the chart of the Deep Water rig explosion on April 20, 2010, as well as the charts of the transits during June, July and August, that suggest how ordinary people have accepted and maintained the ecological mess we find ourselves in."

And so that brings us back to who we are, where we are, and what responsibility we take for what we have, if not created, certainly allowed. It seems that Mother Earth has been shaking and quaking this year, starting with the earthquakes in Haiti and Chile and other places, the volcanic eruption in Iceland, and then the BP spill in the gulf, which continues to pollute and contaminate our precious resources with no end in sight. How do we turn this around and start to heal ourselves and our planet and do so in a compassionate way?

I believe it starts with a 180 degree shift from the masculine principle of domination, control and plundering to the feminine principle described above in which we work together, treat each other and ourselves as precious beings, and become whole. We are all responsible for making this shift in our own lives. Like Green Tara we can offer empathy for all beings as a mother does for her children, seek to provide protection from the unfortunate circumstances we encounter in the world, and provide healing. As such, we become the World Dancer, the final archetypal figure in the Major Arcana of the Tarot, who has reached a state of conscious awareness that allows us to do the Dance of Creation and both redeem ourselves and our beautiful planet. The question is: What are we each willing to do to bring about this change and redemption?

The In Between

oldfrenchfairyta00sgrich_page_0461In the time between Christmas and New Year my favorite things are: Resting and enjoying my home and family

Yesterday my hubby Rob and I went for a bike ride into town in 60 degree weather and had tea at The Open Eye.

We went to see Avatar last night--loved it. See it in 3-D! A wonderful message about indigenous people and taking care of our mother, meaning whatever planet or moon we live on--in this movie we are the aliens who didn't love their Mother and are in search of other resources to exploit on the distant moon, Pandora. Needless to say, our arrival opens up a Pandora's box of troubles for the indigenous people -- wonderful, large, lithe, blue creatures that have much in common with Native American tribes.

Making delicious food like this:



Start by peeling and thinly slicing about a pound of fresh, tart apples (about 4 big apples) 3 large eggs 3/4 c. milk (soy/rice milk works fine) 3/4 c. flour 1/2 t. salt 1 T. + 1/4 c. butter 1/4 c. brown sugar cinnamon and nutmeg to taste powdered sugar

Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Beat together eggs, milk, flour and salt until smooth. Add 1/2 c. thinly sliced apples. Melt T. butter in cast iron skillet in oven; coat bottom and sides of pan and then pour in batter and put in oven for 15 minutes. Then turn temperature down to 350 degrees for last 10 minutes until pancake is light brown and crisp. If bubbles form, puncture with fork. While pancake is baking, saute rest of thinly sliced apples in 1/4 c. butter in skillet on stove and add brown sugar. Season to taste with cinnamon and nutmeg and saute until apples are tender, but not too soft, about 8-10 min.

When pancake is ready, slide onto plate, pour apple filling onto one side and fold pancake over. Pour a little melted butter on top and sprinkle with powdered sugar.

Tarot card reading for the New Year

Here's good way to do a reading for the entire year: A full moon spread. Lay out 13 cards in a crescent shape for each of the full moons in the year. Write down your reading for each card and each full moon and see how it corresponds for the year ahead. Did you know we've got a blue moon coming up on New Year's Eve this Thursday? That has to be an auspicious sign for 2010.

(Love the Fairy Tale Tarot by Karen Mahoney. I heart the Tarot of Prague cards if I could ever find them for a reasonable price).

Make SoulCollage card for New Year. Here's the one I made most recently for the Witness card, the one who sees without judgment and draws us up to higher consciousness:image151

Collecting images and ideas for a vision board for what I want to be, create, and bring into the New Year.

One thing I want to do is teach and facilitate more creative workshops and retreats.

Here's what I already have on the calendar: SoulCollage workshop on January 9 at my home and Vision Board/SoulCollage workshop (Outer and Inner manifestation) with my friend Lauri later in January; Crowning the Crone retreat the last weekend in February in Durham; and the BEAR retreat on Cape Cod the last weekend in March in which I will facilitate 2 workshops on Meeting and Manifesting the Triple Goddess. More to come!

Reading a good book

I'm currently reading Wesley the Owl--The Remarkable Love Story of an Owl and His Girl by Stacey O'Brien

Did you know that owls mate for life? If an owl's mate dies it will often get depressed, stop eating, and die of grief soon after. Did you know that the reason owls can turn their heads 180 degrees is because underneath all that feather and fluff is a very long, thin, neck that can twist on its axis to keep an eye out for both prey and predators? Did you know that even though we tend to think of owl's night vision as its most amazing feature, it's really its hearing that is the owl's primary sense organ. One ear is higher up on its head than the other, allowing the owl to triangulate the sound of it's prey and swoop down on it with amazing accuracy. A barn owl can locate a mouse under three feet of snow by homing in on its heartbeat! (If owl is your totem, like she is mine, it's important to learn about its prey, too. The mouse -- attention to detail -- has much to teach us as well.)

Enjoy the in between!