Today the Moon ingresses into Cancer, its domicile where it has access to the resources it needs to support us in cultivating experiences of safety, security, nurturance, and care. Then Mars makes a conjunction to Saturn in Aquarius. In Hellenistic terms, both of these planets deny or negate, and together, they can describe a driving, persistent refusal. In more modern terms, Mars describes action, advancing, and fighting for that which we desire. Saturn describes diligence, duration, limitation, and constriction. It could be that today holds particular blockages to what you are trying to accomplish or refusals for the actions you are trying to take. It could also be a time for focusing your willpower and drilling down, channeling your energy and momentum into whatever small or limited space you are given in order to insist on change. The Moon in Cancer then makes a sextile to Uranus in Taurus. Uranus can be destabilizing, but the sextile is a helpful aspect. It may be that under our current conditions, you will be challenged to create practices of cultivating care and safety in new ways. If your usual sources of comfort are not immediately available or your access to security feels compromised, how might this situation provide the push to innovate new pathways into experiences of security and comfort?
Today the Moon in Gemini makes a square to Neptune in Pisces. With Mercury, the ruler of Gemini, already in Pisces, this describes magical thinking or communication feeling more inscrutable. The implications of our curiosities may seem unfathomable, and the direction of imagination may be more available than reason—which could be challenging if there are ideas that need to be conveyed with clarity today. Then Mars ingresses into Aquarius, which puts Mars no longer in the sign of its exaltation and once again co-present with Saturn. With both malefics moving through Aquarius—a sign that describes the systems and societies we can imagine coming into being as the old world orders pass away—the next six weeks no doubt hold challenges for building and sustaining connections and collectivity. Mars is the planet of action but also severing and separating. As we move through unprecedented periods of physical isolation and varying degrees of separation from one another, it becomes even more important that we be willing to invent, innovate, and practice new structures with which to support our basic needs for connection.
After so many aspects yesterday, today the Moon in Gemini makes a sextile to the Sun in Aries then a square to Mercury—its ruler—in Pisces. The Moon is in its waxing crescent phase, increasing in light, as it receives the light of the exalted Sun. The Sun in Aries is heroic, a sign of greatness, describing the kinds of esteem and respect often conferred on renowned individuals. In Gemini, the Moon puts such heroic luminosity into dialogue, into social connections, and with Mercury in Pisces, invites us to reflect the light of grand individualism back through stories of collective brilliance. As Angela Davis writes, “Since the rise of global capitalism and related ideologies associated with neoliberalism, it has become especially important to identify the dangers of individualism. Progressive struggles—whether they are focused on racism, repression, poverty, or other issues—are doomed to fail if they do not also attempt to develop a consciousness of the insidious promotion of capitalist individualism.” As we watch the light of the crescent Moon waxing in the sky above us, as we reach out to one another through social media and digital dialogues, may we challenge ourselves and one another to tell stories of greatness that are distributed, communal, and emergent from across and between—in ways that are insistently irreducible to solitary persons and individual figures. We may not yet know how to tell such stories; we may struggle to put these realities into words. But as Donna Haraway offers, “It matters what stories we tell to tell other stories with.” How we tell these stories today creates worlds in which we live tomorrow.
Today is full of aspects in the sky. In the dark hours before dawn, we move through one of the most auspicious aspects of the year: Venus in its domicile in Taurus perfects a trine to Jupiter in Capricorn. Although Jupiter is in its fall, the trine brings the two benefics together, then the Moon—exalted in Taurus—moves through a trine to Jupiter and a conjunction with Venus. Love, the abundance of more-than-enough, and the body are all sharing the qualities of receptive earth. Then the Moon moves through trines to Pluto and Mars in Capricorn, asking how we can be well in the midst of the destruction or abuse that we are facing. Joanna Macy writes, “The one question threading through my life here on this beautiful Earth is about how to be fully present to my world—present enough to rejoice and be useful—while we as a species are progressively destroying it … For when you see the world as lover, every being can become—if you have a clever, appreciative eye—an expression of that ongoing, erotic impulse. It takes form right now in each one of us and in everyone and everything we encounter…” How might we move with this Earth differently—particularly when we are the cause of so much earthly destruction—if we approach it as lover, if we are present to the world, ourselves, everyone and everything we encounter as an expression of an ongoing erotic impulse? As Venus makes a trine to Pluto, how can you access the deep resources for power within that erotic pulse? The Moon ingresses into Gemini and directly into a trine to Saturn in Aquarius. With Mercury—the ruler of Gemini—in Pisces, thinking and communication may be challenged. Saturn reminds us to move slowly, deliberately, creating the structures that are necessary to support effective social connection.
Today the Moon in Taurus makes a sextile to Mercury in Pisces. Then right at midnight eastern time, the Moon makes a sextile to Neptune in Pisces. In M Archive: After the End of the World, Alexis Pauline Gumbs writes, “this is what it takes to cool the planet. hold the world together. protect the mysteries (despite the surface violence. and the pollution you try to bury in your heart). this is what it takes. the strength of no separation. the bravery of flow. the audacity of never saying this is me, this is not you. this is mine, this is not yours. this is now, this was not ever before. if you listen, each drop is saying always always. which is homonym with right now right now. listen to the ocean let go and become one. let go and remain depth. let go and just be everywhere. salt particles aligned with the stars in the sky.” As the Moon moves through these sextiles to Mercury and Neptune, how do we speak in the voice of no separation, the bravery of flow? Listen to the oceans within your body as you read these translations of the sky. What can the waters of your own body teach you of ours and always and right now and be everywhere? The messages of water are speaking from within your body to remind you that even in the midst of so much isolation and distance, you were never separate. We were always everywhere.
Today the Moon in Aries squares its ruler Mars in Capricorn. This is a challenging aspect for the Moon in the final degrees of Aries as Mars overcomes with the force of severing and separating. Starting the day with a description of potential bodily harm is cause for caution and care. Then the Moon ingresses into Taurus, the sign of its exaltation, where it is co-present with its ruler Venus. In Taurus, the Moon draws us back down to stable ground, where we can feel held and supported in tending to our physical needs, whether recovery, repair, or pleasure. The Moon moves almost immediately through a square to Saturn, a firm insistence to slow down, address our fears, make a plan, and move deliberately toward that which can support us. But even the best laid plans can go awry: as the Moon separates from Saturn, it applies to a conjunction to Uranus, destabilizing and disrupting the careful plans we had put into place. This conjunction can describe spikes in anxiety in the face of uncertainty, but know that this will pass, and the Moon has a lot of support in its exaltation with reception from Venus. It is likely that all you need in order to be well is actually already available to you. If you find yourself encountering fears or anxieties, return back to this reassurance that you have so much more of what you need right now than whatever your fears are telling you. Drop your attention in deep. Feel the stable earth of your bones supporting you from beneath your flesh. Lay your body on the ground and feel the whole earth rising up to meet you.
Following yesterday’s New Moon, today the Moon makes no aspects for most of the day. Tonight, the Moon makes a square to Jupiter and then Pluto in Capricorn. The square from Jupiter is a condition of bonification in Hellenistic astrology, offering the support that is available from fallen Jupiter. Aries has a tendency to burn hot and fast and then exhaust the available fuel needed to sustain follow-through and completion. Jupiter in Capricorn reminds us to temper our impulses with both attention to our long-term goals and gratitude for the resources that we can access. The Moon square Pluto may bring up compulsive or obsessive behavior, potentially driven by feelings we have buried or repressed, such as shame, guilt, jealously, fear, or despair. There can be a destructive or self-destructive quality to this aspect. But Pluto is also the keeper of the underworld, processes of death and regeneration. How might you use this time when we are still in the dark of the Moon to let go of those feelings that drive your behavior in ways that are not in alignment with who you want to be? What would it require to compassionately but emphatically put those feelings to rest, to offer them to the ground, where they can be transformed and made useful again?
Today is the New Moon in Aries just around dawn eastern time. Ruled by Mars which is currently exalted in Capricorn—and with the Sun also exalted in Aries—this New Moon carries particular power to achieve recognition and glory. When a planet is in the sign of its exaltation, it is said to be elevated to great heights, a place of honor or great respect, high status or authority. With both the Sun and its ruler Mars currently exalted, this New Moon is an opportunity to plant the seeds of our own authority, to divine the pathways to positions of honor and respect. Aries is often associated with individual freedom and agency, and there can be a highly individualistic quality to the language of exaltation as well. It is vital that we remember that all freedom is socially conditioned and that to be elevated and respected, indeed, to exercise authority, is always relational within a collective context. Both the New Moon and the Sun’s ingress into Aries just days ago—the Vernal Equinox—mark times of new beginning. How might we tell the stories of new beginnings and plant the seeds of exaltation and authority in ways that do not forge the heroes of individualism or the fiery honors of one set apart from all others? How might we channel the energy of these new beginnings into telling heroic tales of collective sovereignty, the ways we lift up the lowest among us and become elevated together, distributing authority and stoking fires capable of sustaining long-term co-existence and living well? If the pathways to positions of true respect and honor must always bring us back to mutuality—honoring and respecting one another—how might we use this lunation cycle to forge such pathways toward one another and forward together?
Today Mars makes a conjunction to Pluto in Capricorn. Mars can describe action and assertiveness, but it is also traditionally a malefic planet exalted in Capricorn. Joining up with Pluto—which can describe misuses and abuses of power, as well as that which is buried beneath the surface—this aspect cautions us to be prepared to respond when power is leveraged against those who are most vulnerable. The Moon in Pisces makes a sextile to Jupiter in Capricorn then a sextile to Mars and Pluto. Jupiter is the ruler of Pisces, and though it is in its fall in Capricorn, this could be a moment of offering needed resources for supporting and caring for our physical and emotional well-being. With so many resources in high demand, this is a time to ask ourselves and one another: what actually is enough in order for each of us to be well? As the Moon moves through the sextiles to Mars and Pluto, we may find that the harm or abuse that we have survived in the past has prepared us to know how to respond to the blatant misuse of power and resources that we are witnessing. The Moon then ingresses into Aries, giving us the fire and initiative to take action on what we know needs to be done, but be careful of acting impulsively when what is needed is strategy and long-term thinking. As the Moon moves through a sextile to Saturn in Aquarius, we may be asked to slow down, channel our momentum into the formulation a plan, and consider how our actions today are preparations for what we will be able to accomplish in the days ahead.
Today Mercury in Pisces makes a sextile to Uranus in Taurus. This is the third sextile between these planets during this retrograde cycle. This final aspect may complete a story or process that has unfolded from February 5 to February 29 to today. Mercury is the planet of communication, language, the translating or interpreting our thoughts or understanding into a form that can be shared with others, and Uranus describes the unexpected, the disruptive, and the revolutionary. What messages or news has been coming into your life that is encouraging a radical new direction, and how might those messages be completed or clarified today? The Moon in Pisces makes a sextile to Venus in Taurus and a conjunction to Neptune in Pisces just before Venus perfects its sextile to Neptune. This aspect describes a dreamy, transcendent approach to love and pleasure. This is a time for fantasy that opens up new dimensions of your embodiment of your desires and pleasures. As many of us are isolated or spending time with very little physical contact right now, this aspect could be a perfect time to block out several hours to indulge and luxuriate in your own fantasies and pleasures. As JD Davids writes on @thecrankyqueer, “So, whether you’re already your own best partner… or if we’re needing to reduce our contact with other humans and their delightful blends of microbes… and/or whether we may find ourselves in the position of loving the ones we are with, here is what I wish for you: May you have the space for a little or more than a little time alone (even if that means shower time or a discreet walk, if not a private bedroom) to really learn — and do — what you like best.” How can you use today to practice or discover all the ways you might pleasure yourself, with your imagination and fantasies as your guide?
Today the Moon ingresses into Pisces and makes a conjunction to Mercury then a sextile to Uranus in Taurus. Pisces beckons us into the tides of empathy and compassion, and in these challenging times, these are resources that we need in abundance. Mercury may be struggling to find words for emotional experiences that feel ineffable, so be patient with yourself and those around you. If you or someone else cannot yet find the words, we might ask: what are you feeling in your body? The sextile to Uranus can describe a physical or emotional breakthrough, unearthing feelings that may have felt stuck or restricted in some way. The final minutes of Saturday night mark one of the most significant astrological events of the year: Saturn’s initial ingress into Aquarius. Saturn has been in Capricorn since December 2017, and this is our first taste of Saturn in its second domicile. It will remain in Aquarius until July 1, retrograde back into Capricorn, then return to Aquarius on December 17 where it will remain for the next several years. With Saturn in Aquarius, I’m thinking about fugitivity, in the sense of commitment or devotion to a world that is yet to come. Whereas Saturn in Capricorn has been focused on structures, institutions, and legacies of the past, examining or even dismantling what has been, Saturn in Aquarius is still focused on structure and systems and in some sense control, but now strategizing and developing new systems, inventing new structures that are capable of supporting and enduring worlds that we are only beginning to bring into being. Being in its fixed sign, there is a focus and slow-moving but relentless determination to Saturn in Aquarius. There’s commitment to what the world could become, and as we are watching old, established systems and structures suspended, collapsing, or disintegrating, this commitment to a new world order prompts us to consider: to what new worlds will you be devoted?
Today the Moon in Aquarius makes a square to Venus in Taurus. In Hellenistic astrology, this is a condition of bonification, with Venus dignified in its domicile of Taurus hurling rays of support, satisfaction, and pleasure back to the Moon in Aquarius—our body within the collective. We are living in troubling times, and for many, experiences of fear, caution, heightened regulation, and concern for the collective is holding our full attention. Venus reminds us that in order to be well as we move through troubled times, we must remain invested in practices of pleasure and feeling good. adrienne maree brown writes in Pleasure Activism, “I have seen, over and over, the connection between tuning into what brings aliveness into our systems and being able to access personal, relational and communal power. Conversely, I have seen how denying our full, complex selves—denying our aliveness and our needs as living, sensual beings—increases the chance that we will be at odds with ourselves, our loved ones, our coworkers, and our neighbors on this planet … How would we organize and move our communities if we shifted to focus on what we long for and love rather than what we are negatively reacting to?” What can you do to feel good in your body today—which does not change your circumstances, but does change how you feel inside them? What can you do to support the pleasure of others today? Mars makes a conjunction to Jupiter in Capricorn. Mars is exalted here while Jupiter is weakened in its fall. Together, Mars brings drive and determination to materialize our beliefs and the abundance of which we are capable, and Jupiter reminds us that our actions and activisms today are part of bigger, slower processes, calling us into the magic of hope and faith to sustain our movements.
Today the Moon in Aquarius makes a square to Uranus in Taurus. Aquarius is often associated with collective systems, the greater good, futures yet to comes, and the inventive ideas we will need to create and sustain the worlds we are making. Uranus is the planet of revolution and upheaval, disruption and the rejection of established conventions. We are currently living through a moment of massive upheaval throughout our global systems, shaking the collective, and demanding that we radically reorient ourselves to the near and distant future. In these times of crisis, ground yourself in your body and ground your body on the earth. In the midst of so much that is changing, trace the core structures that remain unchanged, that can support us in this transition from one reality to others. The Sun in Pisces makes a sextile to Saturn in Capricorn, offering resources for longevity and sustainability to the ways in which we are shining brightly through practices of empathy and compassion. As we concern ourselves with the experiences and well-being of others, we not only become more fully ourselves: we also access that which we can offer that is life-affirming to those around us. Saturn reminds us that this is not just for today or tomorrow. What kind of world might emerge if we were to commit to sustaining these practices of mutual aid, centering the lives of those who are most at risk, and providing relief to those who have been impacted most directly? The Sun then ingresses into Aries, marking the spring equinox in the northern hemisphere. The Sun is exalted in Aries, as it passes through this moment when the hours of night and day are equal and presses forward toward the summer solstice and the longer day of the year. This is a time of warming up and bringing new life into fresh flourishing. Even as we move through difficult days, notice how these days are getting longer and brighter. Notice the fresh green buds sprouting at the tips of branches and the delicate blossoms coming up through the mud. Whatever we are experiencing at the scale of our own lives, we are also a part of larger cycles of growth and regeneration.
Witchcraft and COVID-19
As the global pandemic of COVID-19 continues to escalate, I have found myself asking the question: what is the function of witchcraft in this moment when our familiar established systems—many of which were already oppressive and exploitative, in ways we did and did not recognize—are collapsing around us in the face of cohabitation with the invisible? Pandemic or plague, this is a large-scale encounter of troubled coexistence between species, and multi-species coexistence has not been a strength of humanity for quite a long time. We are witnessing the force of the invisible, where the microbial becomes indistinguishable from the emotional, where fear of the virus spreads in waves that move with the virus itself but are also irreducible to it, where care for the living and concern for those most at risk from contact with the virus are shaping our physical realities and social spaces as much if not more than the virus itself. So what I am calling “the invisible” in this moment is both affective and biological, a more-than-human species that is living with and through human bodies as well as the legion of emotions and sensations that are shaping our lived realities as we scramble to respond well to what we cannot see. The virus is biological material but it is also a feeling—or countless feelings—that are attendant to this crisis. In a sense, affectively, we are all already infected with the virus if we consider that its reach is not measured only by confirmed physiological contraction, but also the feeling states that are surging through our systems day by day as reports circulate and events are canceled and spaces are closed indefinitely and social gatherings are prohibited, the feelings of hypervigilance and sensuality as we wash our hands again and again, caressing and stroking or scrubbing the surfaces all around us as we sanitize and disinfect, saturated with both anxiety and compassion. We are all already living our bodies differently because of this invisible virus. This is not to diminish the gravity of those who have been diagnosed with the virus, those undergoing treatment or those who have died. Rather, it is the say that the effects of the invisible are multitudinous, and none of us are the same as we were before this encounter began.
Witchcraft is a sustained and ongoing collaboration with the invisible as well as the visible, the intangible as well as the material. It is the cultivation of relations—sacred and ecological, kinship relations as well as pacts and allegiances with allies and co-conspirators. For some, witchcraft is a practice of communion with the planet, the ongoing development of right-relations with the land, the sky, the waters, and all those living relations to which we already belong. For others, witchcraft is a practice of devotion to deities or demons, summoning spirits and seeking powers from beyond the human realm. It is possible that these are different words describing similar or the same phenomena. Dion Fortune said that magic is the art of changing consciousness at will, and if this is the case, then we do so by working intentionally between the visible and the invisible, the material and the intangible. We generate and sustain felt embodied states of connection and ecstasy, dissolving the boundaries between self and planet, possessed by renegade desires and fallen angels, dancing as air and fire and water and earth, speaking with the voices of Goddesses, drawing the moon down into our bodies, journeying into underworlds, becoming-plant, becoming-animal, becoming-stone. Whatever else witchcraft may do, the transformation of invisible felt states, the capacities to access other ways of sensing and feeling and being when confronted with multi-species realities—even when those realities are threatening or lethal—is what we have been practicing all along. I cannot give you a spell to prevent the microbial from entering your system or to prevent the transmission of this genetic material from one body to another. No doubt there are witches who are allied with plants and minerals capable of enhancing our immunity or supporting our recovery, and perhaps there are sorcerers who can call on spirits to perform the miraculous. But here is how witchcraft is functioning for me today:
Through daily practice of intentional and attentional relating, I am affirming the sacredness of all living and dying things who are held within the relations we call this planet. We are not at war with genetic material that seeks to replicate within our cells. We are currently struggling to rediscover how to live—and to live well—as we live with that which is not exactly living without us. These are troubled relations but they are not war, and it casts a different kind of spell to structure our realities as combat or coexistence. What kind of spell do you want to cast?
Every day I am communing with ancestors—the dead as well as the not yet living—including those in my bloodline but also those ancestors of possibility, the queer and gender-variant, the transcestors who lived before me and make my life possible. I reach out across spacetime to be with them in their lives and to learn from them, because surely these wise-women, these seers, and these healers have wisdom to offer from between the worlds. Every day I set out water in a glass from my grandmother as an offering to these ancestors that they may drink and be well, and each day when I return to pour the remaining water out into the plants with whom I live, some of it is gone. Yes, perhaps evaporated into the atmosphere, but how is this invisible process any different from the ancestors having drank what they needed? This is a practice of communion with the invisible, and it cultivates a different way of being with the invisible, giving and receiving in need and reciprocity, which is very different from living in constant fear of what we cannot see.
Every day I am communing with the elements—air, fire, water, and earth—and offering gratitude for the early springtime rain, the muddy earth, the chilly breeze blowing through the park, the sunlight from beyond the clouds. I hold these elements in my body and honor these tangible, material ways in which I am not separate from the world around me. As we move deeper into practices of social isolation, it becomes even more important to practice knowing and feeling that while I may be socially isolated, I am not separate. I am still connected to a vast more-than-human world in intrinsic and intimate ways.
I am spending sustained time with rocks and stones, sitting in meditation, listening deeply to the subtle qualities of these ancient companions. These rocks have survived millennia. They have remained present for countless deaths and dying processes. They have endured throughout immense loss. Many have undergone substantial transformations of heating and cooling or calcifying or breaking apart. Listening to their wisdom requires slowing down, existing in a different relationship to time, and becoming attentive to the gentle whispers and tremors of contact with significant otherness that I would never perceive if I were moving at the accelerating speed of this world in crisis. It is a kind of spell to slow down and to listen deeply to the subtleties of stone. This is time magic. The stones speak to the minerals within my own body, the parts of me that are billions of years old that have also survived and endured across deep geological time, and as I listen, something surrenders, something softens, and something lets go.
It does not diminish the severity of this crisis to cultivate felt states other than fear, anxiety, panic, grief, scarcity, anger, and rage. We can respond effectively to crisis and also cultivate grounding, tranquility, contentment, abundance, pleasure, and joy. The spells I am casting right now include reaching out into memory or imagination or fantasy and connecting to experiences of abundance, pleasure, and joy, finding or installing those felt sensations within my body, and staying in those states for ten, twenty, thirty minutes—until my system has the opportunity to experience bringing these feelings into the present moment, feeling differently in the context of crisis. This does not make the crisis dissipate, but rather, it conjures a different body for moving with and through this turmoil. Because in the face of this plague, I am not willing to surrender the hard-won pleasures and desires and experiences of well-being that have been given to me by queer and trans communities and ancestors, by wise-women and witches who have dealt in healing magic for centuries or perhaps for thousands of years.
In order to be well with the invisible, we must become practiced at perceiving and responding to what Alkistis Dimech describes as “the occulted body”—which is primarily simply the body, but more specifically the body that we do not see, the body that is hidden. In other words, the parts of one’s own body that are invisible, that cannot be seen, that must be felt—the insides, fluids, fascia, muscles, and bones, but also the images, memories, sensations, social conditioning, and desires that compose this experience we call a body. Engagement with the invisible happens first throughout our own invisibilities, feeling into our own embodied places that we cannot see, and conjuring states of being that are not seen but felt. It is from here, from working with the invisibilities of our own selves, that we can also contour the affective dimensions of the invisible virus that are shaping our social spaces and disintegrating worlds. It is possible that months from now the crisis will have abated and you will emerge seemingly unscathed by the virus, but if you have spent those months holding fear, panic, anxiety, and dread within your body’s system, something will have been lost and you will not have, in fact, emerge unscathed. It is also possible that you or I will become host to this virus, that our temperatures will rise as we cannot catch our breath, and it is possible that some of us will die. How do we want to die—saturated with fear and regret and despair, or cultivating ongoing experiences of peace and pleasure and joy? What would it mean to not only live but also die well? What I am trying to say is that as we crash into these waves of invisible forces—where the content of such waves is both genetic and affective, biological and emotionally embodied—witchcraft and magic offer tools and traditions for shaping our felt experiences, for shifting consciousness at will, for cultivating pleasure and joy throughout the occulted body, so that we might move differently through these uncertain times.
Particular thanks to Sam Johnson, Maree ReMalia, and Norah Zuniga Shaw. Many of these thoughts were shaped in conversations with these loved ones.
While not making direct references, this thinking is in deep entanglement with Donna J. Haraway.
This is a busy day for the Moon in Capricorn as it moves through conjunctions to Mars, Jupiter, Pluto, and Saturn, and a sextile to the Sun in Pisces, before finally ingressing into Aquarius. The Moon describes our instinctual needs for safety, security, and care, and this series of aspects describe a potentially tumultuous path toward meeting these needs. The conjunction to Mars can agitate our tempers, sparking conflict either with others or within ourselves as we move through a challenging situation. Jupiter offers support and relief, but from a diminished capacity; we may have access to more than enough, but we may also be challenged to ration and take care of how we utilize the resources available to us. Pluto not only intensifies whatever we are already feeling, but also turns up the pressure as our current circumstances begin to unearth traces of trauma or abuses of power from within the depths of our own bodies. We may not feel like we have an outlet for that which is getting uncovered and brought up. The sextile to the Sun in Pisces revitalizes us as we concern ourselves not only with our own needs but the needs of others as well. Sometimes we cultivate more care in our lives by offering more care to others. Saturn enforces restriction and isolation, and as we globally move deeper into practices of what we’re calling social distancing, we may begin to feel the effects of this distancing in our physical and emotional bodies. What structures or practices can you put into place to address your emotional and physical needs under these escalating conditions? Finally, the Moon moves into Aquarius, reconnecting us to the big picture and inviting us to strategize and plan for unknown futures in the making. We do not know what the future holds, so how can we begin to formulate the collective systems that we will need in order to support us as we move through such uncertainty?
Today the Moon in Capricorn makes a trine to Venus in Taurus and a sextile to Neptune in Pisces. While the Moon may struggle in Capricorn—the sign of its antithesis or detriment—Venus is strong in its domicile of Taurus. This trine offers generous support to the Moon, reminding us to prioritize pleasure and nourishing physical experiences in the midst of challenges. As many of us are facing more solitude and isolation due to COVID-19, it is even more important that we remember the importance of pleasure, (self-)touch, eating food that will support us, and staying committed to the well-being of our bodies. Under the conditions of increasing physical distancing, what practices can you maintain to invest in your erotic wellness and feeling good? Neptune in Pisces beckons us toward non-ordinary reality and altered states of consciousness. As we spend more time on our own, this aspect suggests making time for meditation and rituals practices for shifting consciousness, connecting to invisible experiences that exceed rational descriptions of the world, and perhaps partnering with substances and plant companions for experiencing our bodies in more expansive ways. Such altered states hold the capacity to dissolve what might seem like fixed boundaries, eroding our sense of separation as we connect to ancestors, sacred elements, guides or deities, the tangible and intangible world around us, and even one another in practices that fold across time and space. If you are feeling the struggle of separation and isolation, how can you use today to reconnect to your own body and pleasures, and also to shift into states of consciousness in which you are deeply connected to collectivities that cannot be undone be regulating physical contact and distance?
Today Mercury ingresses back into Pisces, the sign of its detriment and fall. Mercury is retracing the path of its retrograde, which can describe a process of integrating or making sense of the lessons that we were reviewing during the retrograde itself. That said, as Mercury moves back through a sign where it often struggles, there may be answers or information that continues to elude us. Mercury in Pisces asks us to communicate about our feelings with as much clarity as possible, but this can be difficult if those feelings are too immense or overwhelming. The Moon in Sagittarius makes a square to the Sun in Pisces, entering the waning quarter phase of the lunation cycle. As we continue to move through this process of healing, the waning quarter Moon asks us to let go of structures or practices that are no longer serving us. The Moon then ingresses into Capricorn, the sign of its antithesis or detriment but with reception from Saturn. The Moon describes our instinctual needs for safety and security, own physical and emotional needs for comfort and care. These resources can feel in short supply in Capricorn where the emphasis is on work, discipline, and accomplishment. No doubt there is work that needs to be done, but be sure that you are also investing in practices of self- and collective-care. The Moon makes a sextile to Mercury in Pisces, suggesting that one way to respond to immense or overwhelming feelings will be to focus on the body, the felt sensation of whatever is coming up for you right now. You may not be able to put easy words to the emotional experience, so what if you began by trying to describe your physical state from the inside out? As the Moon makes a trine to Uranus in Taurus, we may find that access to comfort or care comes through insisting on revolutionary and innovative approaches to asking for what we need and offering what we can to meet the needs of others.
After several days of busy skies, today the only major aspect is a square between the Moon in Sagittarius and Neptune in Pisces. This square challenges us to approach the world around us—the world that goes beyond our own borders and horizons—in ways that are actually in alignment the worlds we can imagine, the worlds of which we dream when we are saturated with empathy and compassion. With both planets in mutable signs, living into such worlds will require adaptation and responsiveness. In her brilliant analysis of critical pedagogies in the context of emerging geopolitical constellations of power, the assertion of a “new world order,” and the linking of the academy with the economy, M. Jacqui Alexander writes, “We are all inhabitants of this world. The question we must pose is how do we inhabit this new world order? … And yet we confront a major difficulty in reconciling desire with practice, of teaching a vision we have not yet fully lived, of moving inside and across the outlines of a map, with no guarantees … Thinking justice, teaching for justice, and living justice means that we continually challenge each other to enunciate our vision of justice. Unlike the new world order with elite ownership for members only, we all have ownership in this new vision; no single one of us stands in a proprietary relationship to it, for it is to be collectively imagined, collectively guarded, collectively worked out.” Today we might ask ourselves and one another: how do we live into worlds for which we do not yet have maps? How do we live and teach visions of justice we have not yet fully lived? How do we imagine and guard and work out collectively new visions for worlds to come? As we find ourselves living through worlds we perhaps never imagined, how do we live even more insistently into our collective dreams and visions of justice?
Today Mars in Capricorn makes a sextile to Neptune in Pisces, offering fresh inspiration and imagination to our drives to accomplish great things. The Moon in Scorpio makes a square to Mercury in Aquarius and a sextile to Saturn in Capricorn before ingressing into Sagittarius. As we move through the depths of our most vulnerable places, we may find that there are difficult truths that need to be spoken and healthy boundaries that need to be cultivated. Putting words to what has been hidden and asking for what we need can ask us to confront our own shame. Brené Brown has said, “Shame is really easily understood as the fear of disconnection: Is there something about me that, if other people know it or see it, that I won't be worthy of connection?” The Moon moving through Scorpio is reminding us, however, that in order to truly experience connection, love, and belonging, it is exactly these parts of ourselves that we have to be willing to share, to speak, to be seen. The Moon then ingresses into Sagittarius, bringing our attention back out into the wider world where we move out beyond our own borders. However, with Jupiter—the ruler of Sagittarius—in Capricorn, the Moon does not have reception here. Our focus may shift from our inner lives to the world around us, but we may feel a bit lost or disoriented by the shifting, changing world through which we are moving. Finally, the Sun in Pisces makes a sextile to Pluto in Capricorn. There are processes of regeneration that only become possible once we have moved beyond the old ways in which power has operated. What new forms of life and livability are becoming possible specifically because the old systems are decomposing all around us?
Today the Moon in Scorpio makes a sextile to its ruler Mars in Capricorn, supporting us in courageously moving through the feelings beneath the feelings arising right now. If you are encountering fear, what is beneath that fear? If you are experiencing frustration or rage, what is beneath that frustration or rage? As the Moon makes a trine to Neptune in Pisces, we may find that feelings that seem personal are shared or originate in collective experiences from which any individual experiences are constituted. The Moon then makes a sextile to Jupiter in Capricorn; both in the signs of their fall or depression, neither are in ideal conditions, but this aspect may describe a kind of solidarity or support that emerges specifically in the context of conditions that are less than ideal. If you find yourself struggling with the challenges you are facing, look around. See who else is struggling, and consider what you may be able to offer one another in the midst of these trials. The Moon makes a trine to the Sun in Pisces, reminding us to give our attention and focus to that which is life-affirming—for ourselves and for others. Finally, the Moon makes a sextile to Pluto in Capricorn, assuring us that powerful resources become available to us as the ways in which those resources have been utilized disintegrate and decompose. What kinds of power might you begin to access if you let go of your attachment to power being structured or channeled in ways that are established or familiar?
Michael J. Morris is a witch, an astrologer, a tarot reader, an artist, a writer, and a teacher.