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August 18, 2020 – New Moon in Leo and New Moon Tarot Spread

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Today marks a New Moon in Leo. New Moons are “no moon,” meaning that it is not visible because of its alignment with the Sun. Yet despite its cloaked nature, this moon phase is associated with the power of a fresh start. Farmers who follow moon phases for planting use the New Moon to plant annual flowers or fruits and vegetables that grow above ground, such as corn, tomatoes, squashes and melons.

We can use this same energy in our personal development by using the New Moon to plant seeds that we wish to grow. Determining what we’ll plant depends on the zodiac sign in which the New Moon happens, as the Moon will be Full in this same sign in six months’ time, when we harvest what we planted.

Moon in Leo

When the Moon is in Leo, it combines the emotional, intuitive, home-loving characteristics of the Moon with Leo’s loyalty, creativity and sense of drama. Whoever coined the phrase “go big or go home” may well have been a Leo Moon. This placement wants love and comfort, but also wants a controlled, organized environment in which they are in charge. Prepare to hear the lunar lion roar when it’s happy, excited, amused or feeling playful. But when a Leo Moon feels badly hurt, it may not do much at all.

When I was a kid, my mom often said to me, “If someone hurts your feelings, say ‘ouch.’” She wasn’t a student of astrology, but it was good advice for me, as I have a Leo Moon. There have been many times I’ve felt hurt or betrayed by someone’s behavior, but will come home to lick my wounds rather than publicly call out the person. Above all else, a Leo Moon has pride, and unless circumstances force the issue, they will exhibit a controlled emotional response.

This New Moon in Leo encourages us to plant seeds in the areas of:
• Creative pursuits
• Emotional vulnerability
• Leading with heart, not head
• Acknowledging our gifts, talents and skills

With this in mind, try out my New Moon Tarot Spread to gain clarity and insight in these aspects of your life.

New Moon Tarot Spread

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This New Moon Tarot Spread is one I began using earlier this year during my new moon rituals. It is designed to help you discover the seeds that need planting at this point in time, so that when the full moon in Leo occurs on January 28, 2021, you can reap a bounteous harvest.

Shuffle the cards and cut the deck as many times as you feel you need. As you shuffle, take several deep breaths and center your thoughts on yourself and your desire for deeper knowledge and foresight.

Lay out the cards in rows of 3 cards each.

1. Where you are right now
2. What influences you
3. What you have released since the last new moon
4. What “seeds” (your goals and plans) need to be planted
5. How you can nurture the growth of your goals and plans
6. Other resources that are available to you during this cycle

Tips on Making the Most of Your Reading
  • Write it down. I like to record my readings in my journal, adding any notes or interpretations on the reading in a contrasting ink color. Before I begin the reading, I write down my current state of mind.
  • Take your time. Schedule a time to do your reading when you won’t be disturbed. I find that my new moon readings can be done within 24-48 hours of the new moon being exact and I still get a very insightful reading.
  • Focus your energy. Turn off your phone, music, TV, etc. Sit silently for several minutes before you do your reading. If you do any other ritual work with moon cycles, include the reading as part of your practice.
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August 3, 2020 – Full Moon in Aquarius & Full Moon Tarot Spread

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Today there is a Full Moon in Aquarius, but what does that mean? Here on Earth, when we look up at the full moon, it appears to be shining brightly because of where the Moon is positioned in relationship to the Sun and the Earth. A full moon marks the end of a cycle. The zodiac sign where the full moon occurs provides insight into the aspects of life illuminated by that bright full moon. After a period of living in the shadows, those aspects have gradually moved into the light.

Moon in Aquarius

When the Moon is in Aquarius, there can be emotional objectivity and detachment. The Moon wants to explore feelings and emotions, which requires a deep dive into our experiences, beliefs and attitudes and how we feel about them. Aquarius is focused on truth and objectivity, which requires ascending into the heavens to see humanity from a global perspective. At first glance, a student of astrology might think the Moon in Aquarius is a frosty, emotionally detached placement.

However, if we keep in mind that everyone has feelings, but has different ways of showing and managing those feelings, then it’s a little easier to understand how the Moon’s focus on emotional response can extract Aquarius’s desire for truth. For example, the Moon may ask Aquarius, “How do you REALLY feel about injustice?” and Aquarius replies with “I am AGAINST it!” The Moon encourages Aquarius to show those feelings in the ways Aquarius feels most comfortable. The Moon says to Aquarius, “show, don’t tell.”

The ways an Aquarius Moon could show its feelings include:

  • writing a letter to local officials about an issue in the community
  • signing and circulating petitions
  • advocating for justice & equality through participating in demonstrations and protests
  • educating others through sharing articles & resources

Full Moon Tarot Spread

A full moon is a perfect time to reflect upon the lessons learned since the last full moon, and what you wish to call forth for the next cycle. I developed this Full Moon Tarot Spread several years ago and use it at every full moon. This spread shines a light on the shadows of the cycle that has ended and casts its glow into what is to come.

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Full Moon Tarot Spread

Shuffle the cards and cut the deck as many times as you feel you need. As you shuffle, take several deep breaths and center your thoughts on yourself and your desire for deeper knowledge and foresight.
Lay out the cards in the pattern shown, or in rows of 3 cards each – whatever works easier for you.

  1. Where you are right now
  2. What influences you
  3. What you have learned since the last full moon
  4. What you are learning now
  5. What you take with you into the next cycle
  6. What you leave behind
  7. Advice
  8. What comes of following advice
  9. What to expect at the next full moon
Tips on Making the Most of Your Reading
  • Write it down. I like to record my full moon readings in my journal, adding any notes or interpretations on the reading in a contrasting ink color. Before I begin the reading, I write down my current state of mind.
  • Take your time. Schedule a time to do your reading when you won’t be disturbed. I find that my full moon readings can be done within 24-48 hours of the full moon being exact and I still get a very insightful reading.
  • Focus your energy. Turn off your phone, music, TV, etc. Sit silently for several minutes before you do your reading. If you do any other ritual work with moon cycles, include the reading as part of your practice.

 

Moxie and the Mighty ‘Mo

Several years ago I wrote this post about being in need of a ‘mo, also known as a homosexual friend. Brief recap: I had been encouraged to find a ‘mo by someone I met at a college alumni gathering, the idea being that this ‘mo would impart wisdom and be there to support me when I’m having a meltdown at 3 a.m. I didn’t try all that hard to find one while living in SoCal, which may explain some of my poor choices in relationships and footwear.

Nearly 7 years later, I am very happy to report that I have found a ‘mo: my neighbor, Steve.* He moved in a few months ago along with his dog, Daisy*. I liked Steve the minute I met him, and the fact that we were able to have friendly, positive conversations right from the start – even when it had to do with Daisy’s barking (she’s since quieted down and has become a canine pal to me and my cats – well, Ippie, anyway) – was surely a good sign.

The more we talked the more I felt like Steve could be my ‘mo. We would have long text message conversations where we bitched about the Clydesdales, a.k.a. the women who live in the corner apartment and clomp by our apartments at all hours like it’s a runway and they are in heavy platform shoes. We talked about Steve’s decision to go vegan and I told him about a few locals I know who are big on the vegan scene. Lots of fun gossip, lots of potential bonding.

But I didn’t want to rush anything. “I think I have a ‘mo now,” I told Giles. “That’s awesome!” he said. I don’t know that he really understood my need for a ‘mo, but he is an empathetic kind of guy, so he says things like this.

Last weekend Steve & I went for coffee and I decided to pop the question.

“So, a long time ago I wrote this blog post about being in need of a ‘mo.” I started.

“What’s a ‘mo?” said Steve. I was concerned this did not bode well, but I pressed on.

“It’s a homosexual friend who will impart wisdom,” I said, quoting directly from the original post.

“I have never heard that term before,” said Steve.

“Apparently it’s a thing in SoCal.”

“Well, I’d be happy to be your ‘mo, but just to forewarn you, I am not the stereotypical homosexual.”

I jumped up and down. “That’s fine. You just need to impart wisdom. Can you do that?”

“I think so.”

Since then there’s been more gossiping, discussion about the hotness of actors in Magic Mike, the beauty of Matt Bomer, Sacramento life, and food. But my favorite conversation so far was talking a little about Tarot.

“What’s your favorite card?” said Steve.

“The Magician.” It’s all about manifestation and owning your power, so I dig it. “What’s yours?”

“The King of Pentacles.” Great choice – he’s all about practicality, wealth, stability.

I smiled. “I’d like a King of Pentacles.”

He laughed. “Girl, me too!”

Yeah, Steve is the best ‘mo ever.

 

Joe Manganiello (2nd from right), you can be my King of Pentacles anytime.

Happy Birthday Moxie!

Yep, that’s right, kids, it’s my birthday. And since I did this for Momcat and Pops, I might as well keep up the tradition and do a list of some of my favorite things. If you’ve been reading my blog for a while, you’re probably already familiar with some of these things. For the Moxie neophytes, take notes. There will be a test later.

I have been studying astrology and Tarot for 8 years. I find both disciplines to be incredibly fascinating and a great tool for self-awareness. I love analyzing astrology charts for other people, as well as reading Tarot cards for them. Anyone who’s into Tarot will tell you that there are tons of Tarot card and oracle decks on the market, and that it’s very tempting to just keep accruing decks. I have four oracle decks and four Tarot decks – and yes, I want more. Sue me.

I grew up in a very diverse town and went to school with a number of Indian kids. As such, I attended parties at the homes of my Indian classmates and had my fair share of curries, raita, mango chutney, and other classic Indian dishes. Nowadays I consider an Indian brunch buffet to be a smorgasbord of comfort food. Bring on the vegetarian samosas and the chicken tikka masala!

I admit it, I love this movie. Yes, yes, it’s got a stupid plot and lame dialogue, but dear god, it’s Olivia Newton-John! She’s a muse and she’s inspiring the guy with the ugly hair to go be creative! You have to believe we are magic! You just have to!

I have this weird addiction to office supplies. Paper, pens, notebooks, clips, day planners, binders, Post-It notes, folders…it all makes me drool with delight. Walking through Staples or Office Depot is therapeutic to me. Aunt Gigi has a similar office supply addiction, and as a result she has given me some of the funkiest, coolest file folders, notepads, and pens. My favorite thing so far is the file folder that says “It’s Good to Be the Queen.” Hell yeah!

Featured on TLC’s “Miami Ink,” Chris Nunez is part owner of a tattoo shop and a bar in Miami. When I see him on TV, I get slack-jawed and giggly and stupid. Just writing about him makes me feel a little loopy. I love the dark, mysterious-looking guys, which as we now know can be my Achilles heel.

Karaoke is another form of therapy for me. I love attention, so it’s only fitting that I love to get up in front of people and do something, anything, to make them look at me. Fortunately I have a decent enough voice that I can belt out “Lady Marmalade” and not have people pay me to shut up. While I have yet to buy my own karaoke CDs, I do have a spreadsheet on my Palm TX with all the songs I like to sing, broken down by venue and/or karaoke DJ. God bless technology.

Everybody Should Play the Fool

One of the neat things about Mercury retrograde is that sometimes you get an opportunity to reconnect with someone from your past. Recently I e-mailed the blog link to Sparky, one of my childhood friends, and as a result we had a great conversation tonight.

Talking to Sparky brought back all these memories of hanging out at her house in the summer. She’d call me up in the morning and ask if I wanted to come with her and her mom to collect the money from the videogames they had bought & placed at a local arcade. They would pick me up and we’d head off to the arcade. I felt super-cool to be with them while they pulled the silver bin from the belly of the Frogger or QBert machines and emptied out the quarters. Often Sparky’s mom would give us a bunch of the quarters and we’d run off to play games for a while. If it wasn’t for the Ms. Pacman they had in their basement, I would have never learned how to get past the banana board.

Sparky had a pool where we spent a lot of hours. We would try to figure out the best way to keep our masks from fogging up while we were underwater, and we’d play Star Wars and other games. Sometimes her older sister and her current boyfriend would be at the pool with us – we frequently acted even more outrageous than usual just to get attention.

Since VCRs had just become popular, Sparky’s mom would take us to the video store and we’d pick out a few things to watch while we feasted on chicken patties and chocolate pudding. We watched movies like The Dark Crystal and Legend and Krull – and I turned Sparky on to Xanadu. We were big into fantastical stories.

Sparky was goddamn genius level. She could read at an extremely advanced level and was an incredibly skilled artist. She wrote elaborate stories about worlds in the 4th dimension and drew pictures of the creatures that lived there. She created a cartoon called “Oh for Dragon’s Sake!” that was actually published in a local paper. Sparky’s creativity was boundless and she was the one that encouraged me to write my own stories. Because of her influence, I started writing a story called “Unicorn Island” about a man stranded on an island that was inhabited by unicorns, and another story called “The World’s Greatest Wimp” about a muse who helps a geeky guy become a total hunk. She drew covers for my books-in-progress – I think they might still be somewhere in my parents’ attic.

When we were about 13 or 14, her family moved to the West Coast. I was devastated, but we had already started morphing into teenagers and weren’t so concerned with expressing our creativity.

Tonight, Sparky and I chatted via instant message. We talked a bit about writing, and how it seems so difficult to find the time to create. She actually hadn’t written or drawn much in recent years, and was actively working to get back into the habit. I told her how much I had always enjoyed her writing and drawings. She said, “One thing I’m trying to do now, with writing and drawing, is recapture the fearlessness I had when I was 12 and younger. It wasn’t till 12 that I learned to hide being creative.” After she said that, I instantly realized why we had reconnected at this point in time…and I thought about the Fool.

The Fool card in Tarot comes at the very beginning of the Major Arcana. The card depicts a brightly dressed young man who is gazing at the sky and is about to fall off a cliff – nearby, his small dog is barking and jumping. What’s interesting about this card is that the man looks happy, and the dog doesn’t seem to be alarmed. Based on this interpretation, it makes you ask: is the Fool falling, or is he leaping?

Very young children have no experience of the world as being scary or frightening. Someone has to tell them to not touch the stove or to look both ways before crossing the street. Like a child, the Fool is devoid of experience that tells him to be afraid of the unexpected. He stands at the edge of the cliff because he doesn’t know any different. When the Fool comes up in a Tarot reading, he is telling us to “drop the knowing.” When we no longer look to our fears to dictate how we behave in the present, we become the Fool: trusting that if we leap, we will not fall.

Sparky and I were fearlessly creative as kids. We took the leap into our imagination over and over again, and never felt bad or wrong for it. Then something shifted and we took on the belief that it wasn’t okay to be creative. Now as adults, seeking something beyond our everyday existence, we’re playing the Fool. We’re dropping all of our fears and taking the leap back into our creativity and fantasy, completely trusting that we will not fall.

Making It So: Manifestation, the Magician, and the Movies


Last night I went to see The Prestige with some friends from my Tarot Meetup group. If you haven’t heard about this film, it’s about the rivalry between 2 magicians, played by Christian Bale and Hugh Jackman, and the lengths they will go to in order to be the better, more successful magician. Scarlett Johansson, Michael Caine, and David Bowie also have roles in the film.

Having just come from a meeting on Tarot, I watched this movie thinking about The Magician card. It’s part of the major arcana, which consists of 22 cards that represent archetypes. The major arcana also represent situations and psychological states of being. One of the most well-known cards in the major arcana is the Death card, which symbolizes transition, transformation, and letting go of the old so that the new can come forth.

The Magician card in Tarot represents manifestation. It’s about applying your will to a situation and calling forth what you want. In many Tarot decks, the Magician card shows a man standing in front of a table that has several tools on it. He’s got one hand raised to the heavens and one hand pointing downward, as if to say “As above, so below.” Whenever this card comes up in a Tarot reading, it’s an indication that you have the tools at your disposal to create whatever you want – you just have to make the choice as to what you desire, ask the universe or God for it, and then allow it to unfold. There’s a shadow side to this card, though: you can also use magic and manifesting to manipulate or trick others. If you lack confidence in your ability to actively create what you experience, you may end up in situations that are less than ideal.

The movie illustrated both the light and the shadow side of the Magician card. The desire to be the greatest magician was so strong for Jackman’s character, Robert Angier, that he could not listen to reason. While he was loved, talented, and well-respected, Angier was so consumed with knowing how his rival, Alfred Borden (played by Bale), performed a certain illusion, that he manipulated and tricked others into helping him find out Borden’s secret. In the end, he learned the secret, but not without first manifesting a lot of pain and suffering for himself and those around him. While Borden wasn’t exactly a saint either, he released his desire to be better and focused instead on making a better life for his child.

Michael Caine’s character, Cutter, stated the 3 parts of a magic trick at the beginning and the end of the film:

The first act is called the pledge. The magician shows you something
ordinary—but of course, it probably isn’t.
The second act is called the turn. The magician makes his ordinary something do something extraordinary. Now you’re looking for the secret, but you won’t find it.
That’s why there’s a third act called the prestige. This is the part with twists and turns, where lives hang in the balance, and you see something shocking you’ve never seen before.

When I relate this structure to the Magician card, I think the 3 parts go like this:

The pledge is the vow you make. You want to create something new, better, or different in your life.
The turn is where you turn over the pledge to a higher power and say “If this is for my greatest good, make it so.”
The prestige is the part where your pledge is made manifest. Be careful what you wish for, though, because the vow will be taken very literally, and if you leave out important pieces, the prestige may not turn out exactly as you had pictured it.

I can tell you from personal experience that this method works. Try it out yourself with something small, like getting a great parking spot at the grocery store or shopping mall, and see what happens. I’ll be waiting to hear from you.