Capricorn by Josephine Wall
It seems so fitting that just as we are about to leave the strong-willed, determined sign of Capricorn, the year’s first new moon is in Capricorn — perhaps a cosmic expression of the Goat’s perseverance and staying power. Tomorrow night the moon will be new and will reside in Capricorn, and according to the Jewish Lunar zodiac, we will already be entering Aquarius’ month — though in Western Astrology, the time of Aquarius won’t begin until January 21. (These are the two systems I have studied, but I am curious to know about any others with regards to these dates. Please comment if you know of any other systems’ dates for Capricorn/Aquarius). Whichever approach one takes, most agree that after Capricorn follows Aquarius and both are ruled by Saturn. Some sages teach that Capricorn and Aquarius are akin to the eyes, attributing a special connection and almost unity between these two signs. Indeed, being both ruled by the powerful planet Saturn, there is a clear thread that runs through the two.
My feeling is that we have to take a last serious, very methodical approach to heart in order to ground ourselves before we enter Aquarius. I think of Capricorn and Aquarius as twins separated at birth; Capricorn, an Earth sign, being raised in a down-to-earth family that values an unbending commitment to hard work, while Aquarius, a sign of Air, was brought up in a family much less physically oriented, more theoretical and universally-minded. Both have the same blood running through them; the Saturnian imprint that bestows an unshakable core, which allows both these signs to achieve great heights and make powerful impressions in the world.
In general, the New Moon is always a time for new beginnings, like a blank page, and the sign in which the moon resides gives a direction and a teaching about the coming energies and thus teaches us how to be prepared for them. This particular New Moon is a time of locking down and making practical, dedicated, and real-life commitments and evaluations. Capricorn urges us to access that part of us that needs and thrives on working hard towards our goals. Aquarius is a time for fruition and creatively acting out on those goals, but without a solid plan we can get lost in all that air energy. I think the cosmos are doing us a little favor with the new moon in Capricorn, sort of a last chance to buckle down and make some meaningful goals or even resolutions before they flutter away in the wind. In life, we must balance the forces of free-flowing creativity and methodical, practical approaches to living- both are essential to reach our highest selves.
Reflections for the New Moon:
~Where would you realistically like to see yourself by the end of this new year?
~What practical, realistic steps will you need to take to achieve those goals?
~Are you as responsible as you would like to be with your money, your relationships, friendships, wellness?
~Do you tend to try to escape or run away from the more practical aspects of life too often?
~Is your approach in life more pro-active or passive?
~Do you have tangible, realistic plans for your future that provide you with security?
…if these questions are making you anxious or uncomfortable, you might be an Air sign or Fire sign like me – or just human! Don’t be overwhelmed, you can pick and choose one or two – you get the picture! The important thing is to not neglect the value of time, the power in planning and being proactive about your goals and dreams. And don’t fret, here are some ideas to help even the most nonchalant, non-Saturnian of us to bring ourselves down to earth:
creative journal by marcia beckett
~Make yourself a Saturn-Twin Journal. It should include both the very down-to-earth, practical approach of Capricorn as well as the creative, expressive, and free-flowing nature of Aquarius. I met a woman in college who had a beautiful moleskin journal with blank pages that she herself divided up into weekly calendars. In each “day” she wrote her goals, dreams, inspirations, and also very practical information. What struck me was that she invested so much energy and made the journal so alive with color, writings, drawings; it was the best of both worlds – artistic and also very useful and helpful for organizing her life. I have done this and it always helps to have that book with you at all times – a place to be expressive and to keep track of things, both equally important.
~Look back at 2012 as objectively as you can by speaking with a close friend about each other’s experiences, actions, decisions, and where it all led to. We sometimes tend to forget things (me especially), but the beauty of friendship is that we see one another from the outside but with loving hearts. My friends (and my journals) are usually the ones who remind me gently of the truths that I would rather forget or run away from, and in my life their guidance has been invaluable. You can make a new moon ritual to support and uplift each other while talking out some of the good, bad, and wonderful parts of your year – thereby making space for new and wiser decisions in your future.
~Choose one part of your life that you feel you have neglected or been passive about and make a change – massive or tiny. Whether it is managing your finances, talking to your boss, addressing a health concern, or even facing your own feelings or emotions towards something, this New Moon is a good time to be proactive and take things head on. The best advice I ever got was from my Uncle who told me to always be proactive in life. It’s so simple, but so profound when actually put into practice. So often we just get carried away with the tide and we lose ourselves amidst the many demands of life. We say yes when we mean no, we give when we feel we have nothing left to offer, and we do things without our heart being in it. But choosing to be more proactive about the choices, decisions, and actions we take is vital for our well-being, self-respect, and peace. It also has a snowball effect. If there is something you believe in or want to do, take that first step towards achieving it. You will be amazed at how the universe conspires to help you once you open that door.
~Read a biography about a person you feel a strong connection to/respect for. Autobiographies are amazing teachers because they remind us that each life is a complex story with many ups, downs, and all arounds. No person got to the top of Mt. Everest without first having to struggle and fall. No person achieved their greatest dreams without endless interesting, unexpected, crazy, magical, and unique experiences. I find so much inspiration and guidance in autobiographies and I think this is a great time to start to read one, partnering with the spirit of that person as you embark on your own adventure. Check out Nelly Odessa’s awesome collection of success stories for practical advice from people who made their dreams their reality.
Herbal Ritual for the New Moon
Shepherd’s Purse has heart shaped seed pods, giving it the folk name of Mother Heart.
Shepherd’s Purse (Capsella bursa-pastoris) is a Saturnian herb that has both grounding, rooting energy as well as a magical, deep, and other-worldly quality to it. This herb helps us to develop our inner will and to develop healthy, practical boundaries to stay true to our true will. Burn dried Shepherd’s Purse with a favorite magical herb such as Mugwort (for dreams, intuition, lunar connection) or White Sage (for cleansing, purifying, banishing negative energies and inviting good energy in) over charcoal and try to listen as your inner-most will and desires arise to the surface.
Try a nourishing Comfrey infusion (Symphytum officinale) taught by Susun Weed and take comfort in this Saturnian herb’s ability to mend and heal broken bones and maybe also broken hearts, helping to strengthen the skeletal system and giving a strong foundation upon which to build the future.
Meditate on the Mountain Goat Totem – the way it unhesitatingly climbs the most jagged cliffs and raises its kids to be unafraid of the mountain’s edge. Balance, patience, keeping their eye on their ultimate destination. How can you adapt these teachings in your life?
Looking ahead…..Aquarius is just around the bend, it’s a new moon, a new year, a new energy…may all your plans, goals, and investments be fruitful and expressed beautifully, creatively, with heart and soul in the coming year. May this month and year be a blessed one – one of physical and spiritual abundance and success. xox gem
For exact rising time of the new moon in your hometown, click here.
Interested in Astrology & Herbs? Check out my quarterly journal called the Starry Eyed Herbalist – Winter Issue is out now!