[Kiyoji Otsuji, Three Photographs from the Series, Saburo Murakami Performing “Passing Through”, (1956)]
When you dream of freedom, what do you see? My first thought is a younger, reckless, more naïve version of myself that used to think freedom was rooted in excess: the ability to do and be whatever it was I wanted in the moment I wanted it. Yes, I am a triple fire sign (Leo sun, Aries moon and rising) and have been known on many occasions to give into my impulses. But this belief was more than just my youth or tendency towards instant gratification. This belief is the lifeblood of dominant Western culture: to consume now is what makes us feel free and successful…for a moment.
But deep down we know that this isn’t freedom. This isn’t what truly makes us whole or happy. Instant gratification passes as quickly as it comes, and we are left once again feeling empty and longing. This cycle is the pulse of capitalism, and the root of so many people’s disconnect.
Now when I dream of true freedom, I dream of true balance. All people having the ability to live free of oppression and hate. All people able to live and provide and thrive with equity. All people feeling connected to themselves and each other and the earth, taking just what they need, sharing what they have, and loving themselves always.
To write of freedom now, in the midst of global lock down, seems ironic. Trust me when I say I recognize the laughable dichotomy of it all. Like you, I have been forced to stay inside the walls of my little home. In quarantine, in lack, in a world full of fear and sickness. Forced to look at myself, my (daily) practices, my privileges, and my expectations of this life in new and uncomfortable ways.
Before we talk about today’s full moon, I think it is important to be aware of the major changes happening in the planets. Chani Nicholas explains that 2020 began by Saturn and Pluto entering into a conjunction with one another. She writes with the help of Rick Tarnas:
Challenging aspects (like a conjunction) between Saturn and Pluto tend to intensify themes of repression, restraint, and the inadequacy of our overarching financial systems… the destruction of an earlier mode of life that in retrospect may seem to have been marked by widespread indulgence, naïveté, denial, and inflation. The last time these two made a conjunction (1981-84), the identification of AIDS was made.
Saturn (the planet of Karma, structure, discipline, and cycles) and Pluto (the great revealer planet; planet of exorcism of buried truth/power) are setting the stage for a new era. From my understanding of this conjunction, the tension being created by this challenging aspect is creative destruction: crumbling false structures and misuses of power in order to build anew.
This doesn’t sound very freeing. In fact, it sounds a bit terrifying. Even the sickest of structures can become a sense of comfort. To put it frankly, Saturn and Pluto don’t care about our fear in this process. They actually encourage it, because to fear means (at least to these planets) that there is something that needs to be shed. More importantly, fear means there is potential to ask yourself: how badly am I willing to fight for the things I want? Then they will test your resolve. But when you make it through (and you will make it through), you will know at your core that these things are what you value most.
I know what you’re thinking: this kind of harsh testing is sort of the last thing our psyches can take right now. I’m sorry to say it, but we are already in it, my friend. The good news is that there are ways to find balance here.
Enter the full moon in Libra. This big, bright, super moon is called the Pink Moon, named by Native American tribes after the wildflower known as "herb moss pink phlox," or "wild ground phlox," that grew during this time. It is also called the full Fish Moon because this is the time salmon swim upstream to spawn. This moon is a moon of birth, of creation, and is the first full moon after the Vernal Equinox. But if we really look at these names, we can also see how this moon represents reaping reward after a long struggle. The salmon must swim against the raging currents, and the pink phlox must push through the bitterness of winter, in order create. As we all know, birth is not always pretty; it is painful and bloody, but what is made from that pain is something to be treasured.
This push and pull is where we find Libra. Libras are air signs represented through scales held by Themis, the Greek personification of divine law and custom. Libras are charming, beautiful, and crave balance. They are as generous as they are self-indulgent. Ruled by Venus, they love as deeply as they want to be loved. Our dear Libras work hard to maintain peace and harmony. However, as cardinal air, they are catalysts in their own right. They forcefully initiate through new ideas and creativity, while still remaining a balancing force among people.
This full moon, along with the Saturn/Pluto conjunction, is asking us simply and straightforwardly to cut the shit.
There is no time left to be sitting in rotting structures, to be playing along with falsities, or turning blind eyes to misuse of power. The time is now to crumble these things that are not only no longer serving you, but also no longer serving this planet. As Nicholas writes, it is time to imagine how to "exchange status for sincerity, rugged individualism for interconnectedness, and corporate capitalism for communal care.”
We are not alone in this process. No, the cosmos are demanding realignment, balance, and authenticity from the collective. If we listen, if we destroy these harmful structures at the individual and communal levels, we might just birth a free world.
Tarot Reading: 2 of Cups Reversed
The 2 of Cups is a card of love. Upright, it is a card of romance, intimacy, and connection between people. This doesn’t always have to be a lover; the 2 of cups means you are in-sync—with a person, with your art, with your environment, etc. As Marie White writes, “This is the force of love which attracts and binds together, unites, coagulates, cooperates.”
Reversed this card is about self-love. This could mean to focus on self-love, or that the love that you have for yourself is out of whack. Biddy Tarot writes:
Here’s the thing: if you don’t love yourself, you’ll end up projecting that lack onto others, becoming clingy and attached, attracting the wrong kinds of relationships to you, or worse, ending up in harmful situations.
Our world is in a bad relationship with itself and, because of this, I truly believe that this card is telling us two things about our full super moon in Libra:
This entire process, the destruction, the emptying, the birth, and the renewal, is about balance. Finding true balance on our planet, and in ourselves, once more.
Just remember the charm, balance, and grace of Libras when you begin cutting out old cycles in your life—be as gentle as you are tough, be as creative as you are destructive, and be as loving as you are in longing love.
& again, remember that you are never alone.
Stay safe out there, dear ones.
Bibliomancy | Pages 45 & 46 from Field Theories by Samiya Bashir
Who was warned about these things:
the neverhush, the maddening chafe
sliding down a reddened bridge, print
Who was told how to brook it?
The houndstooth stench of olding.
That time just runs itself out. That
we Sipyphus ourselves to glasses,
hobble wreckage down stair
after bricky stair.
That once we leave home--its gaseous
oven--that once we walk the same slow
steps as our hide-and-seek sun that
once we face our anti-lovers' anti-gaze:
coats swept open to flash our own
scarred bellies our own hot hands
ablaze with spent matches with burnt-out
How it loosed its jaw to our kisses?
How it unhinged us? How it tried us
like so many keys like so many rusted
locks? How it missed its target despite its
kicking? How maybe its force could kill us?
Without it what's left day after day
to trundle our legs? What's left to push
breath ragged and torn from our lungs?
Who was warned
how these solar winds would leave us
brown and bruised as apples over-
-ripe host and blowsy seed dis-
Shawnie Hamer / founder of collective.aporia
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