Friday, December 3, 2010

Moonwalk: Sagittarius

Artemis the Huntress Shoots the Moon

© 2010 by Joyce Mason
All Rights Reserved

There’s nothing like a Sag Moon for contemplating your personal beliefs and how you express them. It’s a great goal for this New Moon, regardless of your natal Moon sign.

I’m still chuckling over the time a friend called a Sag-Moon relative a “blowhard.” He’s not the only Sag Moon I’ve known who could fill the bill of a blowhard at times—boastful and talkative. This is a caricature of a Sag Moon. Like any other astrological energy, there’s much more to it in a range from very likable to seriously irritating. There’s the pontificating, know-it-all Sag energy—and for Sag Moon, that would be especially when s/he feels strongly about something. Then there’s also the gifted teacher and sage who has a very large view of life and the world. I hope that under any Sag Moon, we’d like to bring in the latter archetype and have a good laugh at ourselves when we slip into the former. Heaven knows most comedy is a chuckle about the more annoying or contradictive characteristics of the astrological types.

One thing Sag always has is a point, represented by the Archer’s arrow. And it’s a sharp point. Whether the point wounds or pierces consciousness, as in a wake-up call—just like the Scorpio’s stinger, Sag’s arrow needs to be used carefully and with integrity. My Sag-Moon ex-husband had a wonderful expression that goes with that arrow. “You don’t have to kill a flea with a cannon.” No need to launch an arrow if a nice tap on the shoulder will get someone to listen to what you’ve got to say. Overkill isn’t just sometimes devastating to your “pray,” the one’s you’re praying to get through to; it’s an unnecessary waste of energy.

Believe It—or Not

What a great time to take that BIG Sagittarian view and ask yourself, what is my spiritual and ethical perspective on life? Have I learned anything lately to enhance or amend these core values? Have I ever sat down and identified them to myself? If you belong to an organized religion or school of thought, you already have some sense of your belief system. Nowadays many people are more “spiritual” than religious and may be more “supermarket” in their beliefs, choosing from many traditions and ideas and tossing them into their cart to take home and combine into an outlook. (I have core values from my childhood religion but the rest of my belief system is à la carte.)

Considering that our point of view and spiritual beliefs dictate our behavior, nothing could be more important than an occasional review of where we’re at with this core orientation. Sagittarius is linked with beliefs, religion/spirituality, and worldview. This time of year, we prepare for a season of loving and giving—a time when people want to act on the best of their values. A Sag New Moon is the perfect time to observe your own ideas and behavior as you shop, wrap packages, and encounter other humans during what I call affectionately “the holidaze.” It can bring out the best and worst in you, from Santa to Scrooge. No better time than to see what you’re made of in the philosophy department. I’m convinced Santa was a Sagittarius, renowned for his generosity and jolly nature. Perhaps we can all absorb that ho-ho hilarity and generous giving nature from this month’s Sagittarius Moon.

If you need a little help to unleash your inner child (this is for those without much Sag or Jupiter influence or whose Sag is sagging), try Zinnia flower essence. You’ll love how it transforms you into a kid at Christmas again and helps you keep a balance of light, even if you choose to take a more serious look at your spiritual values under this New Moon that calls for it. If the darker days ahead tend to leave you flirting with depression, Zinnia is also a balm that makes the sun shine inside you.

The Oracle Speaks: Artemis “Shoots the Moon”

I knew when I found this photo for our Sag Moonwalk; it was oracular. However, it took me awhile to figure out what Artemis (Diana) was doing here on our monthly stroll, other than the obvious fact that she’s an archer aiming toward the Moon. When the expression “shoot the Moon” also popped into my head, I knew it, too, was the universe whispering a cosmic hint. Here’s what I’ve sorted from this paired vision and caption.

To “shoot the moon” is an interesting expression with varied meanings.[1] In card games, it means to win every trick or point in a given hand—winner takes all. It has evolved to mean aiming for the nearly impossible, since that kind of hand, much less hitting the Moon with an arrow from Earth, has almost no odds of success. Shoot the Moon has also come to mean, “go for broke” or give it all you’ve got. People also say, “Let’s shoot the Moon” when they want to go all out celebrating and having a good time.

All these things feel very Moon in Sagittarius to me from the long-shot gamble to the overly optimistic belief in making such a long shot, and certainly the desire to celebrate life all-out. What does this tell us?

Aim high to fulfill your desires and goals this lunar month. Shoot for the Moon, and if you hit a star, you’ve still speared a chunk of the heavens. Stay optimistic, even in these times of chaos, as society is in a general state of upheaval and core change. Celebrate life, love, and the fact that we are alive to feel every day. Make every day Christmas.

Last thoughts: Artemis was Chiron’s foster parent, along with her twin brother Apollo. It was Artemis who taught Chiron the skills of hunting and was respected among men for her archery skills. Is the centaur in the symbol for Sagittarius actually Chiron? Some say yes, others no. [2] In any case, Artemis had a direct influence on Chiron who passed the knowledge of archery onto the young men he prepared for their heroic journeys. In ancient Greece, archery was one of, if not the most basic survival skill. That this skill came from Chiron’s maternal figure seems at minimum a role reversal. At maximum, this juxtaposition of female energy into the hunt suggests a more symbolic interpretation. We must hunt not just for what feeds our bodies, but also for what also feeds our souls. Artemis aiming for the Moon is not only a consummate Sag Moon symbol; she reminds us that without aiming for a lunar life, we don’t really live; we just survive.

Click chart to enlarge
This New Moon

The New Moon chart only tells part of the story of a whole lot going on in the sky for the next month or so. Let’s start with it.

Saturn is in close sextile to the Sun/Moon conjunction, suggesting that the optimism of the Lights can be tempered with a certain reality, if we choose to access the grounding energy of Saturn. The balance Saturn in Libra brings can help tame excessive holiday spending or letting our generosity run amuck on credit cards when the economics of the day are nudging us to learn more about the spirit of giving rather than the “stuff” of it. If Sag is the sign that speaks out candidly, is this the lunar cycle and the year to suggest to your family a shift in tradition to gifts more in the spirit of the season? Long ago, people used to give their loved ones something they had treasured and were willing to pass on to them. This tugs my heartstrings as touching and more giving of self than the fanciest new “thing.” One friend’s family, deciding they really own enough and can buy themselves what they honestly need, does something different with the $25 or more dollars they used to spend on each member. They donate it to the charity of that person’s choice. Got the nerve? Shoot the Moon!

The Uranus/Jupiter conjunction squares Mars, also in Sag. While bringing wildly wonderful opportunities in large part, the tense aspect to Mars brings to mind potential for exaggerated tempers and big outbursts. Personally, the additional stress of the season always leaves me a bit edgy. Holidays are high on the stress scale. Factor in that you might feel a bit more tense and explosive than usual. Do whatever you do to take the edge off, but remember the Sagittarian tendency to overeat, over imbibe, and so on, may aggravate the condition more than ease it. Draw on that sextile to the Sag Sun/Moon to find sensible ways to ground and center. Be sure you’re prepared emotionally for some of those family affairs that bring up old hurts. Work on thickening your skin and honing your sense of humor, one of the biggest gifts of Sagittarius. Make a long fuse one of your biggest gifts to your relatives, even if it takes a lot of inner work to accomplish.

Sextiling the Lights from the other side is the close Neptune/Chiron conjunction. Healing comes in dreams and visions this month, much as I confirmed in finding the photo and caption for this post. Your spiritual rituals of the season may be more healing than ever—your giving of the spirit more profoundly rewarding.

Pluto and Mercury start the lunar month in a tight conjunction before Mercury goes retrograde on Dec. 10.  This pair is in a soothing sextile to Venus in Scorpio, suggesting a time when we can potentially have deep changes of mind and heart, particularly when it comes to our patterns of loving and giving. With Pluto and Mercury in Capricorn, it’s good to remember that “executive” is a major Capricorn key word combined with Plutonian power. We can be powerful executives of our thinking this month, which directly affects our feelings and their expression. What thoughts do we need to let go of or surrender to in that deep Plutonian way? It’s a month of great outer activity, but inner sorting and regrouping is also insisted upon by Lord Pluto.

Pluto does not suggest; he demands. Our lives work best when we get with the program. Certainly, there is a danger of intense communications and miscommunications with Mercury/Pluto as Mercury goes retrograde. If we work that sextile to Venus to deepen our channels of communication with loved ones, we may find ourselves able to laugh and find the absurdity in many of our misunderstandings.

The trines to the South Node by Neptune/Chiron and Venus really catch my eye. This pattern feels like a prescription for healing past relationship hurts, for letting the waters of the holiday spirit wash away old grievances. Chiron and Neptune in Aquarius are on the Sabian symbol, A Pottery Bowl Filled with Violets. This degree suggests putting something old in new context. The flowers speak to presenting things well. We’ll have opportunities to touch others with lovely gestures. If we can be in the moment (“Then was then and now is now”), we may find miraculous shifts in our perceptions of those with whom we’ve been estranged or at odds. Open to the possibility. [3]

Stepping away from the New Moon chart a bit and commenting on the astro goings-on for the rest of December:

  • From December 12-15, there is an intense conjunction of Mercury Retrograde, Mars and Pluto in the early degrees of Capricorn. Mars will also square Uranus, easing out of influence by Dec. 12-13. There is potential for accidents, miscommunication, and all out bad tempers. If you follow the suggestions built into the New Moon chart, you may be able to transmute a great deal negative energy that could involve conflict and power abuse. Out in the world, this may have impacts at work and require a great deal of diplomacy and lunar navigation to walk without harm through a field of emotional landmines. Alternatively, lie low where you can for this period and know the climate is temporarily volatile. The Mars/Pluto conjunction is waning by Dec. 23-24, and Mercury goes direct on Dec. 29 or 30, depending on your place on the planet. You may welcome Christmas and New Year’s Eves more than usual as they mark cosmic tension release points.

  • Winter Solstice on December 21 boasts a Full Moon Lunar Eclipse at 29+ Gemini. The cusp of Capricorn marks the shift between the wildly outer energy of Sagittarius and the darkest day that asks us to shift toward inner work. I love that this shift happens during a chatty, social Gemini Full Moon. It’s like a last hurrah before we hug the dark and enter the more inner time of year. Look this month not only where the New Moon falls in your chart but also the Lunar Eclipse Full Moon. Both are points of new beginnings. What houses/areas of life are activated for you?

To wrap up, the year ends as a microcosm of a rock ‘n’ roll year where we felt the full wallop of the Cardinal T-Square (Saturn, Pluto and Uranus) and many other omens of big change.

The shake-up isn’t going away. All we can do is evoke the best of the astrological archetypes to help us navigate the river of life as it takes us on a journey to a place of more Oneness, even though the waters may churn on the way. Keep your boat in good shape and your spirits up. A few years from now, we’ll be amazed at who we are, how far we’ve come, and how different the world used to be. We may not be nostalgic.


Photo Credit: Diana (Artemis) the Huntress with the Crescent Moon © Algol


[1], The Phrase Finder

[2] Windows to the Universe, Sagittarius

[3] Degrees of the Zodiac: The Sabian Symbols by Rick Klimczak (1989).

Have you joined the New Moongram Mailing List? The monthly New Moongram complements this monthly Moonwalk with additional features and special offers. This month’s coupon is for $2 off on each of Joyce’s e-books, Chiron and Wholeness: A Primer and Poems to Heal the Healer: The 12 Chiron Signs. Both books are $9.90. There’s a very special offer if you purchases both books. For an extra dime, that’s $10; either book or your choice will be sent to a friend with your compliments as a holiday gift. Join the mailing list on the sidebar now to receive these values!


Tony Vowles said...

This Sagittarius Moon loves your post Joyce! Fabulous picture too!

Joyce Mason said...

Thanks, Tony! I am always so relieved when I hear from an "owner of the energy" that I hit the mark. Of course, I got a little more help than usual this month from Artemis and her arrow. :)

Next month's should be a piece of cake doing my own Capricorn Moon sign, LOL! I'll still want to know if the other Goat Moons have similar experiences.

I have to agree, that picture was a find!

Anonymous said...

Hi Joyce - loved the article. Don't have any Sag in my chart, but a very strong 9th and Jup. I was wondering about the Pluto-Mercury conj. I have natal Mars im 8th in opposition to this conj - and was wondering how something like that may play out. I'm returning to my hometown for the second time in 25 yrs, to see an old aunt about the family history -but there are other relatives lurking in the shadows. I have nightmares of sharpened claws ...

Joyce Mason said...

Hi, Natalie! Thanks for your positive feedback. I think your dream already gave you a hint about possible sharp conflicts. Sharpness might be more of tongue with Mercury involved. A hit I get that's more intuitive than astrological--you may find a lot of conflict among the relatives. Easy to happen when digging up family history. With is comes the old stories, hurts, etc. You'll be in an interesting position that could turn around some of that energy. If you aim to be an objective observer more than buying into any years' long conflicts, you might be able to mirror a neutral retelling of some of these tales and help everyone, including yourself, by diffusing some of the anger and other sharp emotions. Am I channeling Ann Landers, the old advice columnist in the Chicago Sun Times? Don't know, but my thought as I wish you bon voyage on that journey is "be the peace." Also, pack your invisible armor or lead vest for surviving the vibes ... and all the tricks you know about grounding yourself and protecting your energy field. I think you may be on a divine mission.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the insight, Joyce. It's not something I look forward to, but I have a funny feeling that it's something I need to do. So perhaps you are right, perhaps it's a mission of sorts. It might be to say goodbye, to finally put the ghosts to rest. But I'll certainly pack my armour, and perhaps my invisibility cloak. Have a wonderful weekend.

Joyce Mason said...

I forgot the cloak of invisibility. Perfect addition! I'll be sending you good energy, Natalie. When I'm called up for a tough assignment, I always remember the adage, "God never gives you more than you're capable of handling." That's when I say thanks to the Divine Everything for having such a high opinion of me, LOL! One other thing to pack--your sense of humor. Blessings on your journey.