Painting of the Tree of Life in Shaki Khan palace in Azerbaijan. Photo by Urek Meniashivili.


Full Moon Penumbral Lunar Eclipse in Pisces, 24 degrees 20 minutes, September 16, 2016 3:05 pm EDT.

With this Full Moon we are on the home stretch of what has been an intense two weeks for many. This Full Moon is the second eclipse in September, and its impact will reverberate for months to come.

In many ways this is the most medicinally potent Full Moon of the year. A headliner message of this Moon is about the cleansing of poisonous emotions through the detoxifying the waters of the body. The invitation is to compassionately be with the challenging experiences that arise. The invitation is also not to circuit routes of escapism that serve as thrilling and fleeting band aids to a deeper exploration of the message this Full Moon holds.

There is incredible energy infused into this moment in time. Mars is more and more often described as a malefic planet, perhaps a medieval sounding word for our sensitive-to-all-the-myriad-ills-of-the-world Pisces Full Moon ears. I once heard astrologer Rob Hand describe the “malefic” designation in a way that resonated for me, and that is that the planets (Mars and Saturn) are not bad or evil in themselves, it is just that we too often just don’t know how to handle them. They require more finesse to get a handle on. Similar to the way in which a knife, an association often made with Mars, requires a particular kind of heightened awareness and care in handling. A knife is handed to another person with the point facing away. Unless you’re a seasoned war veteran, when cutting with a knife you cut away from your body. That was the response to me from a Vietnam war veteran who was opening the packaging of headphones for me in the store, with the swiss army knife he pulled from his belt loops, when I told him to cut away from his body.

So there is this protocol with malefic planets, where we can shape our experience of them with dutifully applied awareness. In this lunation, there is a great amount of energy available. Mars in a Jupiter ruled sign can direct its sheer force in broad swaths, and somewhat indiscriminately. Mars in Sagittarius (the Jupiter ruled sign), is much more effective if it has some earth style containment. That may look like adhering to a protocol, acting in accordance with a higher purpose, or in surrender to a larger force (community, relationship, god, humanitarian devotion).

Energetically, the Sun, Moon, Chiron, Mars, and several other planets in the sky, are present in the mutable signs — Virgo, Sagittarius, and Pisces. The mutable signs embody a quality of constant movement, stimulation, inventiveness, and novelty of experience. There is this creative quality of continuous movement through experience. This, added to the heightened disjointedness of reality that accompanies every eclipse season is enough to bring on anxiety, a desire to make an abrupt change, an increased sensitivity in the nervous system.

As I have said in previous posts, it is wise to put off making big decisions until the end of September and the beginning of October, if possible. There is strength and wisdom now in taking the time to thoroughly mull things over, re-design plans according to deeply held desires and dream wildly about the grandest and most joyful visions of possibility for your life.

Understanding that there is this energetic quality of flux floating through the heavens lends itself easily to removing a specific object, whether a person or situation from being the source of any powerful emotions. With the object removed, all that is left is the amorphous quality of sheer energy, and you. By the conventions of a Pisces Full Moon with a strong dose of Mars, the thing to do with all that energy is passionately transmute it. Shapeshifting, a Pisces specialty, is a visceral kind of transmutation.

In closing, this is a time to assertively defend your right to emotional well being. This Moon asks us to stand up for the expression of the emotional needs that present themselves, and to know that sitting with them with the keen awareness of an animal on the hunt liberates energy that becomes fuel for a vision of personal bliss.

With love,


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