Eclipses and retrogrades, oh my!

I don’t know about anyone else, but the past few days have stirred up my shadows. I’ve noticed thought and behavior patterns that aren’t very pretty, and that I thought I had worked through, re-wired, healed, etc. All that spiritual work, you know. 

Apparently, not.

It has been a little like walking past a mirror and catching sight of my reflection in one of those moments when I might scare small children (or even grown men!)

A few days ago, I told someone that the fear of not having the money to pay bills is worse than death. I was slightly triggered by what felt like a too optimistic view of life, and I blurted out what I can only describe as a dark, shadowy energy.

IMG_4746A day later, I was alone in the forest near the family cabin, walking up the creek to avoid the heat. For some reason, I was afraid. The fear wasn’t intense, just uncomfortable, all the worse for my judgment that it was unfounded. I was in a place I visit often, less than a mile from the cabin. The background of anxiety was familiar, too familiar, reminding me I have been living with it for far too long.


The very next day, deeper into the forest and higher on the mountain, I collected huckleberries. My picking was accompanied by a litany of thoughts along the lines of guilt and bargaining over how many berries might be too many. Was I taking berries from the bears? Could I pick a few more? Did I have the right to take some huckleberries? The monologue would have been funny if it hadn’t been in my own head. 

What’s going on in the sky to contribute to my shadow work is unique and intense. Tomorrow (Friday, July 27th) the Full Moon is in Aquarius and is a total Lunar Eclipse. This is the longest-lived Lunar Eclipse in a century; for 103 minutes the Moon’s reflected light will be blotted out by the Earth. Right next to the Moon is the planet Mars, the second-closest it has been to Earth in 60,000 years. 

Any Full Moon can heighten emotions, but an Eclipse is an amplifier. Mars – planet of action, desire, masculine energy – can stir up restlessness, agitation, even anger. Since Mars is opposite the Sun (vitality, identity, our inner light) and retrograde (appearing to go backward in the sky), and part of the eclipse, it may stir up old resentments and point us inward to our own shadow, as is the case for me. 

Add in Mercury also just turned retrograde, and several other planets in their backwards-moving cycles, and the tides are metaphorically (and perhaps literally) against our every effort. 

There is value in the retrograde, though, not least in the revealing of shadows. We can’t change what we don’t notice. 

We also need to be knocked on our rear ends occasionally (at least I do) in order to pause and review where we are headed. This is a time to really see what we are creating with our thoughts, words and deeds. 

With the forward momentum and action-orientation of masculine Mars temporarily on hold, we have an opportunity to let our feminine energy take the lead. The harmonious blend of Venus (archetypal feminine) and Pluto (God/dess of the Underworld and signifier of deep power), exact at the Full Moon, encourages us to explore what real feminine power might look like. Fluid, relationship-oriented, compassionate qualities are greatly needed now more than ever to balance the assertive, driving masculine. 

Are you forcing your will on your life, or going with the flow? Are the voices in your head critical, or compassionate? Is fear or love in the driver’s seat?

Are you feeling worthy of the abundance surrounding you?

I know what my answers were last week. As my shadows come up from my inner darkness, perhaps they will dissolve in the light of my love.

Want to know how this Lunar Eclipse might show up in your life and how to find the best path forward? Sign up for a Moon Guidance session with me!

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