Today Mercury in Cancer makes an opposition to Jupiter retrograde in Capricorn, then a trine to Neptune retrograde in Pisces. With Jupiter in its fall in Capricorn, this opposition with Mercury could describe a demand to speak up and advocate on behalf of those who are marginalized, those whose experiences are ignored, forgotten, or even maligned. What opportunities are available to you within your particular social location for bringing attention to lives that are made not to matter? It could also be a time for giving voice to our own experiences that have been depreciated, the parts of ourselves that we have not yet learned to include or value. The trine with Neptune could describe poetic or artistic expression, finding ways to express what is not easily articulated in linear, rationale, or even precise terms. What might find expression if you explored more ways of translating what needs to be expressed? As this is happening, the Moon in Sagittarius moves through a trine with Mars in Aries, a square with Neptune in Pisces, and an opposition with Venus in Gemini. We may find that we have access to bold initiative and assertive momentum when we inhabit a more expansive perspective of our experiences. Doing so can also be disorienting or even confusing; how you were accustomed to understanding your place within your context might feel elusive when you dare to move out beyond the familiar. By extension, how you communicate in relationships may require an adjustment period or new negotiations as you bring a broader view of yourself and the world into how you are relating.
Today the Moon ingresses into Sagittarius and into a trine with the Sun in Leo. Sagittarius offers some measure of relief and room to breathe as the Moon moves between Scorpio—the sign of its fall—and Capricorn—the sign of its antithesis. After several days of receptivity and pulling attention inward, the Moon continues to gain light and opens awareness back outward. Sagittarius encourages us to move out beyond our own horizons and explore broader perspectives of ourselves and the world—which may require dismantling patterns of thought and behavior that limit us. The supportive trine from the Sun reminds us to connect to joy, that which ignites and illuminates more of who we are and want to be. Sonya Renee Taylor writes in The Body Is Not an Apology, “Expanding our mind’s capacity for radical self-love means we may need to tear down some mental walls. If radical self-love is an open floor plan, expanding our space for connection and joy, rigidity and judgement are concrete walls, cutting off visibility and partitioning us off from our best lives.” What rigid perspectives or internalized systems of judgement have convinced you that you are not enough, that you are not miraculous? Allow today to be an opportunity to practice a different, more expansive way of being with yourself as you move through the world.
Today the Moon in Scorpio starts the day with a trine to Mercury in Cancer, then moves through a cluster of aspects: a sextile with Jupiter retrograde in Capricorn, a trine to Neptune retrograde in Pisces, and finally sextiles with Pluto and Saturn, both retrograde in Capricorn. The Moon in Scorpio is already deeply involved with dark, interior spaces, and with all of these aspects with planets that are also in water and earth signs—many of them retrograde—the focus today on introspection, reflection, and retreat may be immense. This could be a day for journaling, for revisiting your long-term ambitions and dreams, for confronting the ways in which you repress or police your own emotional responses, getting honest with yourself about your current internal and external conditions. All of these aspects are supportive, suggesting that if your take the time to do this interior work, you may find that you have access to resources that you did not know that you had. bell hooks writes in All About Love, “The heart of justice is truth telling, seeing ourselves and the world the way it is rather than the way we want it to be.” So many of us have learned to lie, to be dishonest with ourselves and others, to repress the truth in order to protect ourselves, to avoid being hurt or hurting others. But love and justice must grow out of truth. How might you get more honest with yourself today in order to move in alignment with what is true?
Today the Moon ingresses into Scorpio, the sign of its fall, then into a square with the Sun in Leo, entering the waxing quarter phase of the lunation cycle. In Scorpio, the Moon is plunged into emotional depths, pulling us into our dark and vulnerable places, while the waxing quarter is a time of rising to challenges and pushing through resistance. What parts of yourself are you afraid to feel? What feelings are you afraid to share, and what might become available as you confront these inner impediments? Jupiter retrograde in Capricorn makes a lovely sextile with Neptune retrograde in Pisces just as Venus in Gemini is making a square to Neptune as well. These aspects describe so much affirmation for remembering and empowering dreams and visions we may have forgotten or abandoned. Alexis Pauline Gumbs writes in M Archive: After the End of the World:
“everyone knows we are made of stardust. they just don’t remember what it means.
what does it mean?
it means if we can walk all over each other, we can also walk the sky.
*a conversation a couple of our ancestors had on a romantic night some time (but not too long) before they became constellations.”
Can you remember what it means to walk the sky? What if this is a start? Mercury in Cancer makes a third and final square to Mars in Aries. Their first square was on May 11, when Mars was in Aquarius and Mercury was in Taurus. They were square again on July 8 when Mercury was moving retrograde. Now that Mercury is direct and gaining speed, this final square has the potential to bring some kind of closure to whatever conflict or argument these aspects have been describing over the last several months. Finally, the Moon in Scorpio makes an opposition to Uranus in Taurus. Something in our depths may be shaken, unsettled, or ruptured, but these are the tremors of what it might mean to be free.
Today the Moon in Libra moves through a trine with its ruler Venus in Gemini before moving through squares to Jupiter, Pluto, and Saturn—all retrograde in Capricorn. This is a day for strengthening our connections and investing in our bonds with one another in order to encounter the challenges that we can face together, speaking words that affirm and renew our love for one another. Judith Butler writes in “Performative Reflections on Love and Commitment,” “But if commitment is to be alive, that is, if it is to belong to the present, then the only commitment one can make is to commit oneself again and again. ‘I love you and I choose you again and again.’ I did not just choose you once, but I continued to choose you, and what there is of me in my speech is given to you again and again through this speech act, declaration, vow, and promise, one that binds me to you in the present, whatever present that happens to be.” What can you say today to renew your love, to choose one another again, to commit to the present, to give of oneself to one another—in all forms of love, whether in kinship or intimacy, friendship or otherwise? The squares with the planets in Capricorn may bring up feelings of scarcity or fear, but these are feelings arising from the past. As we choose to belong to one another more fully in the present, as we choose to love again today, perhaps we heal the parts of ourselves that carry the wounds and fears of love and belonging from the past, and we find that another story is possible.
Today the Moon in Libra makes a sextile to the Sun in Leo as it moves through the waxing crescent phase. This is a time of practicing trusting intuition and also cultivating curiosity, especially our interests in others. How might we move through the world differently—especially in movements toward justice and liberation—is we came to one another with curiosity? As Kate Bornstein has said, “I have problems with the word ‘ally.’ Many people think, ‘I accept you, therefore I’m an ally.’ No, you’re not. You know, you’re an accepting person. Ally means you ask me what I need. I tell you. And you tell me what or how much of that you can actually supply … Ask. Don’t assume you know.” As the Moon moves through a square with Mercury in Cancer, there’s potential for emotionally challenging conversations that seem to stretch our bonds to one another beyond what may be comfortable. But the Moon rules Mercury in this configuration; even if friction arises, look for the ways in which we can actually still find belonging with one another. This is a vital resource as the Moon moves into an opposition with Aries. Challenging conversations may escalate into conflict that feels as if it pits individual assertiveness against the needs of the collective. Remember, there is no individual who is not constituted in collective relations. Whatever conflict arises, the opposition challenges us to find synthesis—how to bring personal needs into the collective in ways that need not stay locked in adversity.
Today the Moon in Virgo moves through a square with Venus in Gemini, an opposition to Neptune in Pisces, then trines to Jupiter and Pluto in Capricorn. We may feel as if our intentions for efficiency are at odds with our desires for meaningful connection and exchange. Stay adaptable. Stay open to the possibility that the practical implementation of our ideals might involve compromise and working at a more manageable scales. When we accomplish what can be done with the available resources rather than fixating on what is out of reach, we may find that more becomes possible than would not have been otherwise. As the Moon then makes a trine to Saturn in Capricorn, we may step into our roles as architects of change, building on the foundations that have been laid in order to create movement that can last. Finally, the Moon ingresses into Libra with reception from Venus in Gemini. Remember, movement has never been and will never be an individualist operation. As Angela Davis writes in Freedom Is a Constant Struggle, “… we may be given the opportunity to emerge from the individualism within which we are ensconced in this neoliberal era. Neoliberal ideology drives us to focus on individuals, ourselves, individual victims, individual perpetrators. But how is it possible to solve the massive problem of racist state violence by calling upon individual police officers to bear the burden of that history and to assume that by prosecuting them, by exacting our revenge on them, we would have somehow made progress in eradicating racism? … Every individual who engages in such a violent act of racism, of terror, should be held accountable. But what I am saying is that we have to embrace projects that address the sociohistorical conditions that enable these acts.” It is never sufficient for social change to focus on individual enactors of harm or recipients of violence. We must respond to individuals—including ourselves—always within the larger social fields in which we are constituted, especially as we continue to work for justice, equity, and equality.
Today the Moon in Virgo makes a trine to Uranus in Taurus and a sextile to Mercury in Cancer. Both are helpful, supportive aspects offering resources for motivating necessary change and clearly articulating the steps we are taking from a place of emotional intelligence. Virgo is the mutable earth sign, oriented toward optimizing material processes in order to make them more efficient and effective. The trine with Uranus suggests that what might be most effective today could require approaching the tasks ahead of us in innovative ways, while the sextile with Mercury inspires critical thinking that comes from the heart. bell hooks writes in Teaching Critical Thinking, “… it is practical wisdom that leads us to recognize the vital roles played by intuition and other forms of emotional intelligence in creating a fertile context for the ongoing pursuit of knowledge. Uniting knowledge gleaned from facts and hard data with social skills is a pragmatic approach to learning. Effectively using knowledge in and outside the classroom we develop an organic relationship to critical thinking and use the resources it brings in every sphere of our lives.” When approaching the work laid out before you, listen for the ways that your emotional currents guide and direct you. Bringing those resources to your critical thinking may require deviating from other people’s expectations, but doing so will also allow you to operate from more of your own wholeness.
Today the Sun ingresses into Leo, its domicile, where it has access to the resources that it needs in order to accomplish that which it signifies. Leo is the fixed fire sign at the heart of the summer in the northern hemisphere, where the days are long, hot, and bright. In Leo, we are called into radiant courage and consistent authenticity, the bravery to see things as they truly are and to allow ourselves to be seen as we truly are. Seeing and being seen in our authenticity can be profoundly vulnerable. Brené Brown writes in Rising Strong, “Vulnerability is not winning or losing; it having the courage to show up and be seen when we have no control over the outcome. Vulnerability is not weakness; it’s our greatest measure of courage.” The Sun in Leo has access to all the resources we need to step into vulnerability and fear, when we cannot control the outcome, and persistently insist on authenticity—for ourselves and for others. Mercury in Cancer makes a sextile with Uranus in Taurus, which can describe unexpected news or sudden, surprising changes in communication patterns. If you are feeling misunderstood, consider expressing your ideas in a new way. Finally, the Moon ingresses into Virgo, with mutual reception with Mercury in Cancer. In Virgo, we bring our attention back to practical matters and physical processes, working through the tasks at hand with meticulous precision. But with Mercury, the ruler of Virgo, in Cancer, remember to allow efficiency to be anchored in genuine care.
Today the Moon in Leo makes a square to Uranus in Taurus, a trine to Mars in Aries, then a sextile to Venus in Gemini. This is a day for bold departures from rigid social norms, for breaking from established expectations and courageously stepping out into the world radiating the brilliance of our own authenticity. Alok Vaid-Menon writes in Beyond the Gender Binary, “The world we want is one in which all people, regardless of their appearances, are treated with dignity and respect—one in which these factors do not have a bearing on safety, employment, and opportunity. We want a world that acknowledges and appreciates the complexity of everyone and everything—one in which transformation is celebrated and not repressed. We want a world which people have an underlying worth regardless of their gender … Imagine how beautiful it would be if the way we navigated the world was about creative expression, not conforming to arbitrary norms.” We can challenge existing norms that make life unlivable for people who are different when more of us confidently and creatively embody our own differences, challenging the conditions that demand conformity. When we do, we not only contribute to a world more capable of accepting and celebrating difference; we also make ourselves more available to meaningful connections with others, as we allow them to see and know us in more of our complexities and difference rather than seeking connection through sameness or trying to meet others’ expectations.
Today the Moon in Cancer opposes both Jupiter and Pluto before perfecting its conjunction to the Sun. Oppositions can be confrontational, demanding that we find balance or synthesis where there seem to be opposite extremes. What is the role of care and caretaking within the larger, long-term projects of transforming systems of power and demanding justice and liberation? Today’s New Moon in Cancer occurs in opposition to Saturn retrograde in Capricorn. The Sun will exactly oppose Saturn several hours later. The New Moon is the initiation of a new cycle of growth and consciousness, and with the Moon opposing Saturn, we are being asked to root our review, deconstruction, and reconstruction of inherited systems in the felt, lived experience of the body. Cara Page and Susan Raffo write, “There is nothing we talk about in movement building work that is only an ‘issue.’ These are things we have experienced. Our bodies, our communities, our memories carry all of the times when we experience or witness violence, systemic oppression or displacement, oppression, disrespect, and marginalization … Everything we want to change in the world around us also exists right here in our bodies. We carry the histories of our people’s trauma and our individual struggles. They are both here, strengthening us with what they have taught us and also holding us back as our fears, anxieties and survival strategies keep us away from the things that could most support our liberation.” In order to truly pursue collective change and liberation, we must take seriously the wisdom and direction emerging directly from embodied experience, healing what holds us back and leaning into what supports us. As the Moon then ingresses into Leo, we may begin to find how to externalize and express that which we discover and experience within our tender interior places.
The Moon makes a conjunction to Mercury in Cancer just after midnight, in the hours before dawn. Mercury is the messenger who moves in between the upper world and the underworld. Listen for the insights and messages that may have come through in the night. The Moon then makes a sextile to Uranus in Taurus, inviting helpful disruptions to shake us from our habits and to draw us into more immediate presence with the here and now. The Moon then makes a square to Mars in Aries. Both are in their domiciles, but Mars is in the superior position, a challenging aspect for physical or emotional harm—accidental or arising out of conflict. Finally, the Moon makes a beautiful trine to Neptune retrograde in Pisces. Alexis Pauline Gumbs writes in M Archive: After the End of the World, “when the memories started to come back we were sleeping. not quite dreaming but regenerating our cells. almost dreaming that we were regenerating cells. on the verge of regenerating cells that would let us dream deep enough to remember … when the memories started to come, we were untrained. we didn’t even know how to tell each other what was happening. eventually we would learn to share what went on while we were sleeping with all the specificity we had reserved for waking life. but at the time, when the memories came back, we were only starting to know.” In these troubled times, how might we all surrender to sleep and regeneration that would allow us to dream deep enough that we begin to remember—remember what we do not know how to name, do not know how to share, do not know that we do not know. Remember the dreams that will teach us how to survive.
Today the Moon moves from Gemini into Cancer, the sign of its domicile, but makes no degree-based aspects into after midnight tonight. In its domicile, the Moon has access to the resources it needs to cultivate safety and security, nourishment and care. However, the cardinal axes are currently challenging by whole-sign—with Mars recently ingressed into Aries and Saturn and Pluto in Capricorn. The Moon has its dignity, but under these conditions, safety and care may require fierce confrontation of those forces that would compromise the capacities for life and livability. In thinking about how to provide care under these conditions, I return to Alexis Pauline Gumbs’ reflections on queer mothering in Revolutionary Mothering. She writes, “We are looking at mothering as an investment in the future that requires a person to change the status quo of their own lives, of their community and of the society as a whole again and again in the practice of affirming growing, unpredictable people who deserve a world that is better than what we can imagine.” She writes of “intergenerational care work of making a hostile world an affirming space for another person who is growing mentally, spiritually, physically, and emotionally … Mothering is a queer practice of transforming the world through our desire for each other and another way to be.” In these perilous times, what if we each took seriously the work mothering—the work to create affirming spaces for others who are growing, for other ways of being, for caring for one another with such ferocity that we bring a better world into being?
Today the Moon makes a conjunction with Venus in Gemini then moves through a square from Neptune retrograde in Pisces. Venus is still retracing the shadow of its retrograde, integrating the lessons brought to us through May and June. Gemini offers the capacity to hold multiple perspectives, to understand that love need not be singular in its point of view. Rather, as we practice holding and sharing the experiences of others—experiences that are different from our own—this can become the foundation of love. Audre Lorde writes in “The Master’s Tools Will Never Dismantle the Master’s House,” “Within the interdependence of mutual (nondominant) differences lies that security which enables us to descend into the chaos of knowledge and return with true visions of our future, along with the concomitant power to effect those changes which can bring that future into being. Difference is that raw and powerful connection from which our personal power is forged.” Venus in Gemini teaches us that difference is this raw and powerful connection from which to encounter new visions and bring change into being. But then as the Moon squares Neptune, we may indeed find ourselves disoriented within a chaos of unfamiliar terrains. The risk of connecting across difference is the loss of the illusion of certainty. When we invite perspectives other than our own into our worldviews, we may find that the world becomes unfamiliar and our place in the world becomes uncertain. It can feel like a loss of self, but in truth, however challenging it may be, this is an expansion of Self, the dissolution of the limited ego that only had space for one.
Today the Moon ingresses into Gemini, shifting our attention to social connections, to conversation, to curiosity and learning. Then the Moon makes a sextile to Mars in Aries, bringing heat and motivation and drive, perhaps in the forms of fueling our search for information, perhaps in the form of healthy debate that allows us to deepen our understanding. adrienne maree brown writes in Emergent Strategy, “It is imperative to regenerate our curiosity, our genuine interest in different opinions, and in people we don’t know yet—can we see them as part of ourselves, and maintain curiosity, especially when we want to constrict and critique? Can we each take our little spark from the fire that has started and truly let it breathe enough to grow?” How might you nurture and regenerate your own curiosities today, especially when you encounter perspectives that are different from your own, especially if your impulse is to constrict or critique? Can we start by wanting to learn more about what we do not know about where people are coming from? Can we sustain that curiosity even if we also encounter conflict or disagreement? What might become possible if we preserve our interest and investments in maintaining the social connections that matter to us even when we disagree?
The major aspect of today is the Sun in Cancer opposing Pluto retrograde in Capricorn. This opposition is the culmination point of a story that began when the Sun was conjunct Pluto on January 13, analogous to the Full Moon in the lunation cycle. It is a face-off between the source of life and vitality and the ruler of the underworld, between visibility and what is hidden, between radiance and decay. We must confront the powers that constitute lives as unlivable, disposable, or unworthy of grieving. Judith Butler writes in Notes Toward a Performative Theory of Assembly, “For when bodies gather as they do to express their indignation and to enact their plural existence in public space, they are also making broader demands: they are demanding to be recognized, to be valued, they are exercising a right to appear, to exercise freedom, and they are demanding a livable life.” As we continue to persist through these unprecedented times, how are you continuing to demand livable lives—for ourselves as well as those who are most marginalized? Then throughout the day, the Moon in Taurus moves through a series of supportive aspects: sextile Neptune retrograde in Pisces, trine Jupiter retrograde in Capricorn, sextile the Sun in Cancer, trine Pluto retrograde in Cancer, and finally trine Saturn retrograde in Capricorn. Alongside the Sun/Pluto opposition, the themes of the day may include: reconnecting to old dreams and fantasies, observing how much growth has taken place, clarifying the significance of what we are witnessing, and affirming the boundaries that allow us to remain grounded and compassionate.
Today the Moon in Taurus makes a sextile to Mercury in Cancer. Listen to the messages coming through your own body. Practice naming, articulating, and expressing your own corporeal experience. The Sun in Cancer opposes Jupiter retrograde in Capricorn. The Sun describes perception and understanding, and Jupiter describes expansion and growth. But the opposition can be confrontational, a demand to find balance between what can feel like opposite extremes. The challenge today may be to enlarge your point of view in order to hold and accommodate experiences other than your own, developing a more expansive and inclusive perspective, which may require us to move beyond our own familiar limits. Alexis Pauline Gumbs writes in M Archive: After the End of the World, “she wouldn’t tell us anything until we stopped knowing. stopped thinking that we knew, which came at the long edge of a lot of time spent acting like we knew. and then pretending to know what we didn’t know. and then pretending not to know that we didn’t know. she waited. she saw through all of it.” In order to hold a more expansive view of the world, we must first accept and affirm the limits of our knowledge, all that we do not yet know. Finally, the Moon makes a conjunction to Uranus in Taurus, which can be unsettling physically and emotionally, but in the sign of its exaltation, the Moon has particular access to stability and grounding. In the midst of upheaval, bring attention back to your body, supported by the earth. Breathe deeply. Remember that however shaken you may feel, you are already being held.
Today the Moon in Aries moves through superior squares from Pluto and Saturn, both retrograde in Capricorn, before ingressing into Taurus, the sign of its exaltation. Pluto can describe misuses and abuses of power, and Saturn can describe authoritative limitations and punitive constraints. We are in a challenging moment of pushing through operations of power and existing systems in order to imagine more sustainable communities. As Janaé E. Bonsu writes in Beyond Survival: Strategies and Stories From the Transformative Justice Movement, “Many of us have never seen what it looks like to be truly free, but a common thread in our dreams of collective freedom is a world full of self-sustaining communities that do not rely on systems that perpetually harm us—police, jails, and prisons—to keep us safe or to hold each other accountable … Conflict resolution and community accountability through a Black Queer Feminist lens is sensitive to avoid replicating punitive and carceral logics, which are inherently racist, classist, homophobic, transphobic, and misogynist. Community accountability emphasizes the belief in people’s ability to transform and grow and does not deem people disposable.” As the Moon moves from these hard aspects with Pluto and Saturn and into its own exaltation, we may feel some sense of what a different kind of world could be—a world in which people are supported in growing, in which people are not disposable. As we do so, we must center the voices of Black queer feminists, who have been moving us toward liberation for decades, for centuries, perhaps from the beginning.
Today Mercury stations direct in Cancer after having been retrograde since June 18. It will take a couple of weeks for Mercury to clear the shadow of the retrograde, but today we begin the process of integrating what we have learned from this period as we move forward. The Sun in Cancer forms a trine with Neptune retrograde in Pisces. The Sun brings illumination and clarity, while boundless Neptune describes that which defies or exceeds logical taxonomies of categorization. With Neptune moving retrograde, what becomes clear today may be the ways in which we have obscured that which is true through misapprehending how much more there was than could be known within our available frameworks. Kimberlé Crenshaw, who introduced the framework of intersectionality due to the inability of available frameworks to account for discrimination against Black women, offers, “… when facts do not fit with the available frames, people have a difficult time incorporating new facts into their way of thinking about a problem.” As the Sun potentially illuminates our past misunderstandings, the opportunity is to imagine new ways of perceiving and thinking that bring what is true into clearer focus. The old categories may no longer work; it’s possible that they never did. The Moon in Aries moves through a square with the Sun, entering the waning quarter phase of this lunation cycle. Knowing what we now know, what must be surrendered or abandoned? Where is it time to let go? Finally, the Moon makes a square to Jupiter in Capricorn. Although Jupiter is retrograde and fallen in Capricorn—and although the square can describe challenges—this is a condition of bonification, with Jupiter overcoming the Moon. Support may come from places we considered ineffectual. Affirmation may come in the form of being pushed to grow in ways that could be uncomfortable but also necessary.
Today the Moon ingresses into Aries, igniting drive and direction after several days of wading through the tides of our feelings. The Moon makes a square to Mercury retrograde in Cancer. The square can be a frustrating aspect, and as Mercury begins to station direct, the frustration may stem from a desire to take action when we do not yet fully understand the information with which we have been presented. So many of us are being tasked with making choices and setting plans into motion when the circumstances remain deeply uncertain and everything we need to know in order to act has not been revealed. As the Moon makes a conjunction with its ruler Mars, the call for decisiveness is sharp and direct. Be clear regarding what guides your actions. When the circumstances are uncertain, what does it mean for you to act in alignment with your own integrity? In “Uses of the Erotic: The Erotic as Power,” Audre Lorde writes, “But when we begin to live from within outward, in touch with the power of the erotic within ourselves, and allowing that power to inform and illuminate our actions upon the world around us, then we begin to be responsible for ourselves in the deepest sense.” When charged with the responsibility to take action, will you do so in alignment with your deepest sense of inner satisfaction? Finally, the Moon in Aries makes a sextile with Venus in Gemini, suggesting that supportive connections are available if you are bold enough to initiate them.