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New Moon in Leo: Apollo and his Swans (8.16)

Thank you for joining me for a closer look at the lunar cycles.


What is a New Moon? A New Moon is when our two luminaries, the Sun and the Moon, are in the same sign, at the same degree, on the same page. The New Moon begins a cycle of creation as the Moon is dark and allows for possibility. The sky opens up for our intentions and may bring in tools for a little beginner's luck. Every month, we have a New Moon kicking off a two week cycle where we may be presented something new or we may be the active creators ourselves. It will also, simultaneously create a 6 month cycle that, again, will feel the most potent at the time of the New Moon, but will then continue working in our lives in the background until we reach its Full Moon counterpart in the opposing season.


Sometimes a New Moon theme is obvious– say you are moving to a new city around a New Moon, this is your New Moon story. Sometimes the themes aren't obvious at all because you are given some kind of creative control or you simply have to know where to look for the new beginnings available to you.

The New Moon in Leo perfects on August 16th at 4:38am CST. The Sun and the Moon are conjoined at 23º of Leo creating a New Moon.


The Major Aspects:

Sun-Moon at 23º Leo square Uranus at 23º Taurus (0º orb, separating)

Mars at 22º Virgo trine Uranus at 23º Taurus (1º orb)

Mercury at 19º Virgo conjunct Mars at 22º Virgo (3º orb)

Venus rx at 18º Leo conjunct Sun-Moon at 23º Leo (5º orb, separating)

Venus rx at 18º Leo square Jupiter at 14º Taurus (4º orb)

Venus rx at 18º Leo square Uranus at 23º Taurus (5º orb, separating)

Mercury at 19º Virgo trine Jupiter at 14º Taurus (5º orb, separating)


Additional Chart Features:

• Venus in Leo has just become a morning star on the 13th and is now combust the Sun

• Mercury is in its pre shadow period preparing to station retrograde on the 23rd of August

• Essential dignity: The Sun is in its domicile in Leo, Mercury is exalted in Virgo, Mars has triplicity in Virgo; Jupiter and Mars currently have bound support; Saturn has decanic support


A New Moon Essay:

The Sun and Moon meet up in the sign of Leo where we find peak expression and creativity. After the Venus cazimi that perfected just a few days before (August 13th), we have arrived at newfound clarity that has been festering up until now, waiting for us to make sense of it all. The first half of a Venus retrograde is spent in the dark asking us to believe in the Sun even when it is not shining. This is where the darkest, most egoic parts of us are expressed– possibly inappropriately or haphazardly and yet, this is exactly right. The primal disorder that we experience is crucial for the "putting back together" moment we find at the birth of Venus, at the turning point of the retrograde. This is pronounced with Mars and Mercury both in the sign Virgo, the natural fixer of the zodiac who cautions us not to blaze forward just yet, there is still much revision to be done.


Venusian clarity isn't Mercurial clarity. It isn't cerebral as much as it is a body knowing, a filtering of all the muchness overwhelming our senses. It's like a crush. When you find someone adorable and interesting, it's less logic and more heart fluttering, a magnetic aura that draws you in. A crush rarely makes sense, especially if the person on the other end of the crush is unconventionally attractive. You can't explain what it is about them and yet, that's how we know attraction is a frequency, hormonal, a lack of logical information. Information, a form of Mercurial clarity, can spoil a crush or fan the flame into something spoken. Venus clarity is when it doesn't follow a road map, it knows not because it's written out, but instead because it sees the integrity, the honesty of the next right thing. It's the "I don't know why, but I have to see where this goes." Venus is why we have creation at all, she communicates not with words, but with heart. There is a deep, visceral knowing when something is right and when it is all wrong even before it reaches the mind. The Mercurial clarity (found at the Mercury cazimi on September 6th after Venus stations direct) will likely be a certain kind of confirmation for all that happens now.


This New Moon we are encountering surprise. Maybe it's coming from others, but maybe it's coming from our own shocking revelations. Uranus is very active in this chart and it's in a sign that struggles with the Uranian function. Uranus in Taurus tightly squaring this New Moon means that these changes emerging are uncomfortable and not without tension, they will betray tradition for something new and improved, whatever that means for you. This is exactly how the most effective change is created. It's likely that we are sacrificing resource and security for something more authentic and joyful. Who knows if we'll have support or if it will even work out– but again, Venus who is just around the corner from the New Moon (and is ruling Uranus), isn't logical. She just does what she must and it often looks different than what we think it will.


Now is the time for announcements and correction of the ambition conjured since Mars traversed the same sign beginning on May 20th. We may find that we jumped in too fast, that our heart wasn't in something, that past actions weren't aligned with what we value now. It's okay if you're a different person now. Retrogrades often fast track growth that otherwise would have taken a lifetime of learning to arrive to. The changes aren't done by any means, but you may find that this New Moon is a catalyst for a new identity, a new way of showing up. The astrology of the next month or so reminds me of the sensation of beginning a new craft where the first few creations are total shit until we're slowly getting the hang of it. We typically improve as we practice. We develop systems for whatever emerges in our lives, something unique to us that works for us.


A New Moon during retrograde season is often a bit of a paradox. It could be that you are becoming reborn within something old and constant in your life. I've already seen marriage proposals leading up to this lunation– a very good example of this. It's a fresh, unexpected plot twist in a tale as old as time. I recently listened to Cristina Farella and Mariana Louis' podcast Soror Mystica, Episode 17: The Symbol of the Swan. This reminded me of Apollo (the Greek Sun God, a representation of Leo) and his relationship to the Swan. As they discuss in the episode, this symbolism reminds us that purity will always attract an extreme opposite, though after a star point, maybe it is the shadow that births purity. Or perhaps, Venus retrograde has simply brought us home to a kind of purity that one can only embody fresh from the womb, untouched by the world.


That being said, whatever is beginning for you now, know that the shadow will always chase the purity of your soul, or your creation, or your love– but that doesn't mean it is to be feared. Only the purest can speak with the devil and emerge as white as snow. And (cheesy, but I mean, it is a New Moon in Leo after all), it is this darkness that allows us to see light.


Some songs for this New Moon (as Apollo would surely demand):

Even when he is silent by Kim André Arnesen

Golden Hour by JVKE

Love You For A Long Time by Maggie Rogers


If you missed it, I wrote about my own Venus Cazimi experience and The Week of August 14th-20th:


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