The New Moon in Virgo graces the sky on September 17th, 2020. The darkness of the sky reminds us that even if we cannot readily see it with our eyes, light is always with us. Each New Moon is a time to enter into the inquiry surrounding beginnings - which simultaneously are also endings. In order for a new cycle to begin, the former cycle has to end. In order to be present in the current part of your own personal journey, we must be able to detach from the past and the fixation on how things have been. The new moon reminds us that beginnings and endings are a consistent part of our human experience. Sometimes we are prepared, more than ready, and excited about the transitions. Other times, these transitions catch us by surprise.
Either way, the presence we bring is what determines our experience, moment by moment. This New Moon is inviting us all to turn our attention to the present moment and welcome in every aspect of it - the dark, the light, the in-between.
Our celestial experts give a sigh of relief when speaking of this moon, for it brings with it the energy of healing, restoration, nurturance, and ease. Virgo is connected to the energy of the Goddess, especially the Earth Goddesses. The archetypes found in the mythology of Persephone and Demeter float in, calling our attention towards mother nature and her capacity to heal herself and those who dwell with her. This is a time to reconnect to the land. It is a beautiful time to find out about the land you live on:
Who called it home before you?
What cultural roots does it have?
Can we honor those who came before, and remember that we get to be here because they came before?
This moon reminds us that all of us get to exist because of the Great Mama, planet Earth.
As we witness the effects of climate change and its intensity, we can choose to bring the gift of our time and attention to the earth. Spend time with nature, talk to her, thank her, write her a letter, touch the soil. If you are in a place where being outside is unsafe, let this be about honoring your body as part of nature. Create art that reminds you of your inveterate connection to the earth and all living things. Let your meditative and/or contemplative practices include the perspective that you are both a drop in the great ocean, and the great ocean inside of a drop.
This moon comes shortly after the planet Mars went into retrograde, and astrologists note that this can have something to do with the inner fire we may be feeling. Intense emotions such as agitation, frustration, irritability, the feeling of being combustible, and excess heat in our body may be connected to this planetary shift. We can give ourselves plenty of space to feel whatever it is we are feeling without attaching to it. A reminder that even though we may feel anger, it does not make us "an angry person." Emotions are best served when we apply the qualities of water to the fire of our experience: let them flow without getting stuck. Let them become waves that reveal to us deeper insights once they cool.
The Virgo is also connected to virginity. Though we often connote this word with sex, another meaning of it is purity: in thought, action, and words. We are being asked to consider the way we are speaking to ourselves, treating ourselves, and the thoughts we are thinking. Before we consider how we can best support each other, we are asked to turn inward and caretake what we find. As the sage Don Miguel Ruiz writes in his book, The Four Agreements, one of the ways we can support ourselves in our growth is to practice being impeccable with our word. Spend some time during this new moon cycle, with as much kindness as you can, to ask:
Are my thoughts congruent with who I want to be?
Are my actions in alignment with my truth?
Are my words supporting healing, growth, and connection?
We need not apply any judgement to what emerges, for we are all on our own path, traversing through life together simultaneously, yet each having vastly unique experiences.
Integrity is important to nurture, as it allows us to continue to grow in expand in the direction that is in alignment with our highest most joyous self. Whenever we act outside of our integrity (another way to phrase it is our "ethics" or "principles" or "truth"), we hurt ourselves on some level. Part of living a balanced existence is to be in integrity, not weighed down or distracted by words, thoughts, and actions that are not in alignment with who we want to be, for ourselves and the world.
This New Moon is also asking us to remember our wholeness. As the Buddhist spiritual teacher Pema Chodron acknowledges, we are whole and complete and there is always room to grow. If we are experiencing the feeling of being shattered, pulled in many directions, our own light overshadowed by the collective experience, let us take the time to remember our wholeness. Get still, receptive, and soft. Pull all of the pieces into the center, and let them be held. This might look like extra time in quiet meditation, or a walk in nature. This may look like time in solitude, or in our favorite form of expression. Let us not lose sight of our bigness and its stability.
Now is a beautiful time to acknowledge yourself. What are you proud of in your life? What are you celebrating? What is right there, waiting to be lifted up and honored? This is not about ego inflation, this is about igniting the piece inside of us that already knows how miraculous we are.
When we tap into our wholeness, we are able to hold space for everyone around us who may be in the process of remembering their own. Can we be present for agitation, anger, and confrontation when in community? Can we see each other through a lens that sees the wholeness of the humans in front of us first and foremost? Another translation: can look through the eyes of love?
Remember, you came into this world whole and complete. Nothing can change that. If you have been living in a way that is not in alignment, if there are ways you can better caretake your body, mind, and spirit, there is a beginning awaiting you anytime you need it.
Deep breath in, long breath out.
NEW MOON RITUAL :: A Letter to (our) Nature
The feeling of being pulled in many directions, and the fatigue that results, can be a symptom of transformation. Our global experience is shifting; there have been ripples emanating from the various crisis we are all experiencing. There is so much chaos in our world, and at the same time there is also so much beauty emerging. How can we hold it all at once? How can we be present and awake to experience the magic even while there is so much pain?
We can look to the example of the Great Mama, of earth, and how she holds us all as she continues to make her great revolution around the sun. Let us use this time, and whatever energy and emotions we are experiencing, to turn inward and honor ourselves, each other, and the planet. For it is when we pause and get still that our capacity to see the subtle beneath all of the noise is refined.
Try this ritual as a way to honor yourself and this mighty planet you call home.
1. A Love Note to Mama Earth
- Find a quiet place and bring your journal and pen. If it is safe for you to be outside, find a spot in nature. Once you make yourself comfortable, close your eyes and take 5 deep breaths, in through the nose and out of the mouth. Feel what is below you. The air on your skin. Be aware of the vast sky that is somewhere above you. Orient yourself in this moment, held by the earth. Option to have music that inspires you, a candle or incense and any other
- Write at the top of a new page : Dear Mother Earth,
- For the next little bit, until you feel complete, write a love letter to the planet. What do you love about this floating rock? What brings you joy? What are your favorite spots in nature?
- This letter can be in the form of words, a poem, a drawing, or you might even feel like expressing some of this ritual through movement. Let yourself be in gratitude, reverence, and acknowledgment for as long as you are until you feel complete.
- Afterward, take a few moments to settle into the stillness, letting the effect of the ritual be with you in whatever way it is.
2. A Love Note to You
- Turn to a fresh page. Take a moment to center your awareness on your body, your breath, how it is to be you in this moment. Take five deep breaths.
- When you are ready, write at the top of the page : Dear [Name],
- This is a letter of appreciation for yourself. What is it you are celebrating? What are you acknowledging yourself for? What is emerging? What is right here waiting to be seen, named, and felt?
- Again, this letter may come in the form of words, images, movement or any other form of expression.
- If you encounter resistance, pause and take a deep breath. Know that working with the resistance we feel to honoring ourselves is one of the most productive uses of our time, for our capacity to love ourselves fully grants us the capacity to share that love with the world.
- After you feel complete, review what you have done. Let the echo steep in. Stay as long as you would like.
Knowing that you are a part of this planet, and the planet is part of you, let yourself revel in this miraculous existence for as long as you can.