Thursday, March 20, 2014

Ostara & Spring...2014...

("Charming The Animals", by: Hans Zatzka  c. 1859-1945)

Spring 2014, is here. Temperatures here on the marsh are getting warmer, with a few short resurgences of cooler weather. It was predicted that we would have an extra month of chilly days (according to a gopher), but here in Savannah it hasn’t rung true. Spring has been dueling valiantly (and successfully) with the last vestiges of winter. T-shirt temperatures have been more plentiful than I was expecting.

("Goddess of Spring",
by: Hans Zatska)
As I was getting things together for my Ostara post…oh, for the uninitiated, Ostara is the pagan celebration of the Vernal (or Spring) Equinox…I was thinking about the renewal process that Gaia is going through. For the most part, I describe myself as pagan. I look to nature and the world around us, and beyond.  I have also experienced the centered peace of Daimoku with SGI Buddhists. The incredible energy of a room filled with 300+ people chanting together is beyond articulation. Like myself, Buddhists believe that all life is linked. All life has a place, and purpose. The music of Daimoku really does bring a balance to things. A balance much like the balance of the Vernal Equinox, and the equal nature of dark and light on this day. Thinking about that led me to another belief system.

("Young Hare",
by: Albrecht Durer, c. 1502)
Druid’s have their own celebration of the Spring equinox, Alban Eiler (“The light of the earth”). I think a lot of people think of them as tree worshippers (I've always appreciated trees and have had people ask me if I'm a Druid), but they believe that all life is sacred. They see all things (plants, streams, rocks, etc.) as having ‘life forces’. Plants know when to die, and when to start their growing season. How does a plant know when it is time to grow? Druids recognize this as a sign of consciousness, thus making it a living organism that is more than inanimate.

The technical date is a month away, but Druids also have a connection to the celebration of Easter (most holidays of today are based on pagan origins). The hare is the symbol for Alban Eiler, and the hare protects the mysterious, life-giving Druid’s egg.  Made of stone, Druid’s carried small ballaun or balain (pronounced bah-lawn) with them. The egg communicated concepts via the ellipse. It is a concept in symbolic form, and it represents the cosmic egg of thought. So...the next time you are playing the pagan edition of Trivial Pursuit...*hehehe*

As winter passes the world will become green again. Well, the northern hemisphere, anyway. The warm days of Spring will be a welcome change. Then Summer will follow, and I’ll wish for Fall to hurry up and arrive so we can get a break from the heat. *grin*

Wishing everyone well for their Spring celebrations.

Happy Equinox!
(By: Hans Zatzka...unfortunately, I couldn't locate a title for this one)

Sunday, March 16, 2014

Full Moon In Virgo...March 16, 2014...

(Artist: Carolyn Quan)

March’s Full Moon is in the sign of Virgo, and reaches its peak at 1:10 PM/EST, on Sunday the 16th. Just 4 days shy of the 2014 Vernal (Spring) Equinox. This phase can be best described as awkward, but riding the fence. Not an entirely agreeable time, but not an entirely negative one, either. No need to worry…for now. Some turbulence is more likely in store at the time of the New Moon on the 30th.

The luminaries (Virgo Moon and Piscean Sun) are involved in a trapezoid with an Aquarian Mercury Trine a Libran Mars. Mercury and Mars (both in air signs) are semi-Sextile, and inconjunct the Sun and Moon. Communications can break down, no matter how hard you try. A meeting of the minds could be difficult. Side-stepping the confusion might not be possible, so just soldier through. Keeping things polite couldn’t hurt.

Entering the picture is Saturn in Scorpio, in aid to the luminaries via a trine to the Sun, and sextile to the Moon. The bright energy of the Sun and Moon supports being of service to others. Saturn is there to police things, and to keep things moving along (hopefully, without a hitch).

A big theme for this phase is an emphasis on personal well-being. Transiting Jupiter in Cancer focuses on personal health (mental, emotional, physical, spiritual). Astrologically speaking, a Full Moon phase focuses a spotlight on things hidden. Some things ignored or hidden in the subconscious hallways of your mind could be “brought to light”. You will become aware of them. Use the realization to try and effect some positive change(s). There is also a strong possibility of emotional turmoil. You might feel ‘out of sorts’ (irritable and tense). Emotions could be a roller coaster, and you might find yourself trying to spread it around as a means of controlling others. Playing the victim is not the path to take, and it’s important that you keep a rein via taking responsibility for yourself rather than projecting your turmoil onto others. It is important to forgive others and yourself, so you can move back into a positive space/position.

In late April, there will be a Cardinal Grand Cross. There are a few things during this Full Moon that act as  preparation of what’s to come. Jupiter in Cancer will be involved in a T-Square with Pluto in Capricorn, and Uranus in Aries. Jupiter is also the handle of a bucket pattern. This all asks us ‘who do we answer to/who is in control?’ Those close to us (friends and family); ourselves; something on a grander scale? The answer: all of these elements collectively influence the flow of our lives. It’s important to listen, and weigh all sides. We all seem to think we need personal guidelines, but the best course seems to go with the gut. Don’t be reluctant to disagree with others, but deliver your feelings with tact.

(Artist: David Palladini)
The opposing Piscean Sun projects mystical energy. It has the potential to create harmony between the practical and the spiritual. The Virgo Moon is representative of precision in the physical aspects of our lives, and attention to the details. This is a time to be of service. Live by example. Take care of yourself (physically, mentally, emotionally). Show Gaia some love, and be of service to the environment.

We do so much out of fear and anxiety. The Virgo Moon has the capacity to enhance things. Being hyper-critical, and up-tight, can throw us off balance and compound things by creating even more anxiety. It becomes a habit, and it’s one that is best broken. Don’t over obsess on the small things. Perspective can be completely thrown out of whack. Take your focus off of the smaller details, and step back a bit. Relax. In dealings with others, allow yourself to see your commonalities rather than your differences which can lead you towards isolation. Give yourself time to regroup and get a fresh perspective on the bigger picture.

During the Virgo Full Moon, take some time to commit to making some positive changes in all aspects of your personal health and well being. Set some realistic goals for yourself, and don’t rush things. There is plenty of helpful energy to be had.

For reference on terms in this post you may not know the meaning of, the following link is to a very good online astrological dictionary:

The following excerpt is from the Farmer's Almanac:
  • Full Worm Moon ~ March: As the temperature begins to warm and the ground begins to thaw, earthworm casts appear, heralding the return of the robins. The more northern tribes knew this Moon as the Full Crow Moon, when the cawing of crows signaled the end of winter; or the Full Crust Moon, because the snow cover becomes crusted from thawing by day and freezing by night. The Full Sap Moon, marking the time of tapping maple trees, is another variation. To the settlers, it was also known as the Lenten Moon, and was considered to be the last Full Moon of winter.