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Commitment

Nowhere in my experience has the reality of interconnectivity been so apparent as in the fires in California (where I live) the past few years. There’s another round of them happening right now, and they aren’t burning my house down, they aren’t burning where I am. In fact they are very far away. And yet for the past many days I have felt so sick because I’ve been breathing smoke from these fires. There is nothing in life more inescapable than air, in the most literal, bodily way. And nothing demonstrates our interconnectivity more than air which is hard to breathe because of our shared participation in polluting that air, in changing the climate and landscape in such a way that results in these epic fires (and so many other increasingly destructive natural disasters). Here we are, inheriting our past actions now. It’s so intense! It turns us back to ourselves, or at least gives us this opportunity, in such a deep and often painful way.

It’s made me think about what we are committed to in our lives. How we change things we want to change.

What is commitment to you?

How much does it matter?

What places in your life does it come easily for you?

Where does your doubt undermine your commitment?

What in your life might benefit from more commitment?

(You’ll notice below that there aren’t questions in the horoscopes. Perhaps the questions above are the questions for all this week. As these strange horoscopes took shape, it just felt more appropriate to leave the questions out.)


ARIES | March 21-April 19


Meditation - persimmon
Assignment - Running through a winter forest just to feel the cold.

 

TAURUS | April 20-May 20


Meditation - violet
Assignment - Sitting on the ground, feeling your sit bones sink into the earth with each breath.

 

GEMINI | May 21-June 20


Meditation - bright green
Assignment - Recreating and participating in childhood activities as an adult, in order to heal.

 

CANCER | June 21-July 22


Meditation - silver
Assignment - Believing in spirits just to let yourself open in a new way, like a weird aunt.

 

LEO | July 23-August 22


Meditation - grey
Assignment - Wiping your hands across the screen of your imagination in front of you, to clear the fog.

 

VIRGO | August 23-September 22


Meditation - soft pink
Assignment - Gliding up the side of a mountain, for the pleasure of touching the mountain itself. 


LIBRA | September 23-October 23


Meditation - cranberry
Assignment - Floating in water with your ears covered, to turn down some noise and bring up the noise of your breath.


SCORPIO | October 23-November 21


Meditation - pale yellow
Assignment - Caressing your own arms, letting your belly be big and loose. 


SAGITTARIUS | November 22-December 21


Meditation - orange
Assignment - Exhaling as after great effort, but for longer than the effort took.  


CAPRICORN | December 22-January 19


Meditation - dark brown
Assignment - Drawing a new kind of map, based on everything in you that is already ancient.



AQUARIUS | January 20 to February 18


Meditation - red clay
Assignment - Digging in the earth, to find where your own feet fit. 

 

PISCES | February 19 to March 20


Meditation - a rainbow
Assignment - Seeing everyone seeing you, and not blinking.

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Political Power and Spiritual Life

Continuing in the spirit of this Scorpio season, and particularly the New Moon in Scorpio this week, let’s talk about power. Scorpio understands power on a fundamental level, intuitively. How power moves, how it functions individually, interpersonally, culturally, politically. Scorpio is a sign of extremes, and for this reason it’s very human. It has the most power for self-destruction, for exploring beyond the edge of any taboo, and also the most power for transformation and healing. This energy embodies the uniquely human experience of choosing our path - the aspects we have a choice in, anyway.

How power moves politically is especially foregrounded for us in the USA this week - showing up in our elections.

I’m especially invested in the relationship between political power and spiritual life. This may not be apparent based on what you see expressed within this project so far. I’ve been asking, for many years but with particular focus in the project called Existing Together, what is necessary on an individual and internal level to build a truly sustainable political practice? And by ‘political practice’ I mean, what must we attend to in ourselves to really be able to be there for others? And this is, of course ongoing, not fixed. So I paused on a more overt expression of my politics to some extent when I started this project, because I want as little as possible to get in the way of asking myself and you the questions that turn us back toward what is sustainable for us.

There seems to be a separation between political life and spiritual life - spiritual life being something we do in a certain set of spaces, usually private, (and is somehow only needed by the intellectually less rigorous), and political life is something we do in another set of spaces, usually public. This separation feels connected to so many of the problems of the moment. That somehow engaging politically means we put our humanity, vulnerability and compassion aside in some way, to ‘fight’, or, to engage in spiritual life means we give up on forward momentum in the form of tangible improvements to people’s lives.

I reject this binary, and yet it feels imperative that we describe the interconnectedness of these realms in literal and concrete ways for ourselves if we want to experience joy at all now, while also not resigning ourselves in any way to the horrors occurring on this planet. This is what I mean by asking questions about sustaining our own spiritual and political lives.

Along these lines, here are some questions and horoscopes for you, asking you about your own power. The New Moon in Scorpio is a great time to ask yourself questions about your own political and spiritual power.

When do you feel any sense of power?

How do you accrue or draw on power?

What does power feel like in your body?

How is your power expressed?

What’s the correlation between power and effectiveness for you?

Where do you have power that you might not see it?

Where do others reflect your power to you?

Who models a relationship to power that you admire?


ARIES | March 21-April 19

Question - How does your power relate to your support system?
Meditation - the power in receiving 
Assignment - Begin a new project of connecting the sensation of strength with the sensation of being resourced, helped. Being surrounded by support. Even if it’s through your imagination of unseen guides or influences from art and writing, those dead and alive, human and all other species - take a break from your habit of imagining strength as isolation and see what happens.

 

TAURUS | April 20-May 20

Question - How much do you associate power with consistency?
Meditation - taking a break from routines 
Assignment - What beliefs or habits feel entrenched? What beliefs and habits feel chosen and embodied? Do you worry about changing your mind? Do you give yourself permission to change your mind? Experiment with changing your mind, letting go of your view, building flexibility in your mind - and notice how that affects your power.

 

GEMINI | May 21-June 20

Question - When can your indecision be powerful?
Meditation - letting it be as it is
Assignment - Instead of lamenting your tendency to want to do everything, or being indecisive, spend some time writing this week for yourself. To connect this indecision and curiosity with your own power. Write especially about examples of when this tendency has helped your life in a way that you can only see in hindsight.

 

CANCER | June 21-July 22

Question - What are you afraid of lately?
Meditation - facing fear
Assignment - Look directly at your fears right now. Write about them, spend time with them. Don’t turn away from them. You don’t need to make them go away. You don’t need to solve or fix them. You can touch your own power just be not avoiding them. Take note of the differences between avoiding and being with, and how they relate to your power.

 

LEO | July 23-August 22

Question - What kinds of lights do you surround yourself with?
Meditation - light and power
Assignment - Start with the physical realm and look at your lighting situation - in your house, in your work, your environment. How does it affect your vitality? How is your vitality connected to your power? Then look beyond the physical and ask those questions about what other kinds of light influences are around you. Put some intention into cultivating influences, both physical and spiritual, that nourish rather than deplete.

 

VIRGO | August 23-September 22

Question - What would happen if you didn’t have to improve?
Meditation - the power of being
Assignment - This relationship to doing comes up a lot in your horoscopes but that’s because it’s so needed. Identity for you is so closely tied to output, and the more space you can let in between your self and your output, the more peace and breath will arrive. It’s not a matter of stopping doing, although that is helpful sometimes, but it’s just keeping present the truth that your being is not dependent on, or earned by, your doing self. Think about how we regard children - we don’t expect them to do things to be worthy - we love them just for existing. Turn this lens to yourself. 


LIBRA | September 23-October 23

Question - What percentage of your day is spent considering potential conflicts?
Meditation - the power of your own breath
Assignment - Find ways to let your mind rest this week. Especially surrounding any conflicts or potential conflicts in any area of your life. Give yourself periods of time where you do things that help turn your attention away from problem solving your social interactions and into a more internal experience. What is happening in your body? What is happening in the sky? What is happening in your digestion? What new ways could you be attending to your own vitality?


SCORPIO | October 23-November 21

Question - When do you conflate your intuition with emotional responsibility to others?
Meditation - distinguishing what is you/yours
Assignment - Just because you perceive some emotional state of another, doesn’t mean you have to do anything about it. It does not mean you become responsible for another, or their state. This power to discern between these two things, to create more distance between your intuition and needing to do something always in response, will help you feel more energized and full of power that allows you to be much more generous. Spend time looking at when and how you conflate your intuition with a sense of responsibility for others, see what you find. 


SAGITTARIUS | November 22-December 21

Question - What is it that fulfills you in the quest itself?
Meditation - seeking as power
Assignment - There’s power in seeking, in looking for the next thing, but only if you know that’s what you’re doing. Spend time reflecting on what you are looking for as you look for a new thing - a new belief system, a new person, a new activity, a new product, a new philosophy. The more conscious you are of the fact that you are seeking, the less you are controlled by this habit.  


CAPRICORN | December 22-January 19

Question - How do you see your own power and your own freedom?
Meditation - social freedom as power
Assignment - It’s easy for you to see power as only for people who follow certain rules and have achieved a certain set of things. Observe the places where power exists, yours and others, that are because of someone’s freedom to break rules and freedom to create their own path. Seek out this new understanding of power, look for it.



AQUARIUS | January 20 to February 18

Question - How much and what kind of power do you want?
Meditation - the six directions as related to your body
Assignment - You are not responsible for healing on a collective level and the more you can give yourself permission to focus on your life individually the more power you will find that you already have. This doesn’t mean giving up your group-oriented spirit - you don’t have to worry about giving that up - it’s in you. But when you allow there to be a focus on your individual experience you gain freedom to connect to others more deeply through this lens. Spend time acknowledging and meeting your personal needs this week. Notice your reactions to this practice, if/how much you think it feels self-indulgent, etc. Notice how you ideas about power relate to all of this. 

 

PISCES | February 19 to March 20

Question - What kinds of power do you care about?
Meditation - connecting to power itself
Assignment - Let yourself register and explore the importance of power in your life. Your own specific personal power. What is that and how does it move, how does it work. Write about this - your relationship to power, and see what you notice. Are you avoiding power because it makes you uncomfortable? Are you denying places where you do have power? Are you vague when you could be clear, and how would that help you and the others in your life? How does your sense of clarity relate to your sense of power?

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Sex and Spirituality

I just released a new online class called Reclaiming Spirituality because I wanted to address something that I think is missing. The starting point of it is very simply acknowledging our shared need to connect with something bigger than ourselves. And moving from there, a huge underlying question for me, and the one that frames this class is - how can we experience this connection to what is vast and unknowable more regularly, even though so often our everyday experience seems to pull us away from this, or require too much of us for any energy left over to contemplate spirit. It seems to be something that needs to be reclaimed, from the traumatic gatekeepers of religion, and from the busyness and exhaustion in our lives, among many other places that we’ve left it and forgotten how much we need it, how life-giving it really is.

In the class we’ll go deeper into some places where I think spirituality can be reclaimed. One of them is within our sexuality. These two realms share a lot, specifically a place where we contact all that we can’t control. So often spirituality and sexuality are separated, sometimes for good and sometimes for a lot of pain. What happens if we look at them together as fundamental needs and places that offer potential transformation and fulfillment?

We’re steeped in Scorpio season right now, with four planets in Scorpio - a sign of sex and intensity and investigation. So in this spirit I share sex horoscopes this week. Let these be a starting point, or a continuation of your own investigation in the overlap between these realms. And remember during Scorpio season that it’s still important to cultivate levity!


ARIES | March 21-April 19

question - How often do you let sex happen very slowly?
meditation - delicate 
assignment - Take a beginner’s mind approach to sex this week. Whether with yourself or partner/s, try an approach that you wouldn’t normally take, especially doing some part of it slow that you usually do fast. What happens when the tempo changes? What do you get to experience when you access your beginner’s mind in this realm?

 

TAURUS | April 20-May 20

question - How often do you use your eyes during sex?
meditation - sensory perception 
assignment - See what happens when you don’t use your eyes during sex this week. If it’s with someone else, include them in this, or take turns. If it’s alone, see what happens when you don’t imagine other people or visually fantasize, but just approach sex as a completely sensory experience. What does this shift about your sexual landscape? 

 

GEMINI | May 21-June 20

question - How often do you feel the need for new sexual stimuli?
meditation - the body’s wisdom
assignment - Participate in a sex act that is very familiar to you this week. Experiment with not changing the act, but paying attention in a different way. Paying attention to something that you usually don’t - a body part, breathing, a movement, a position, etc. What have you been missing out on during this event that you didn’t know about before because your attention was focused in a certain area (even/especially your mind)?

 

CANCER | June 21-July 22

question - When do you take sexual risks?
meditation - risk as expression of love
assignment - Identify something that feels risky sexually this week, and try it. Let it be something that feels manageable, but that gives you a feeling of a sense of risk. Maybe that’s voicing a desire to a partner that you haven’t expressed before. Maybe it’s engaging with your own body sexually in a way you haven’t. Just use this opportunity to not keep going down a road where you know what to expect.

 

LEO | July 23-August 22

question - How much of your sexuality do you share?
meditation - reciprocity as vitality
assignment - You need to be seen within your sexual self and share that with others. If it’s not received in a certain way that feels right to you, it can be easy for you to close down and give up. Experiment with your own sexual life not related to anyone else, let this part of you live, without any interaction from others. Then when you do share it, you’ll be more flexible about how it’s received and likely feel freer to share it. Whatever you do, just don’t settle into an extreme because it feels comfortable - remember that you are able to bring in flexibility when you choose to, and this is a huge part of an evolving sex life.

 

VIRGO | August 23-September 22

question - How much do you focus on retaining your own sexual energy?
meditation - pelvic bowl
assignment - You’re naturally so attentive and like to be that way toward your sexual partners. But as a way to balance, practice pulling back into your own energy during sexual encounters this week and see what happens. What are you experiencing? What are you wanting? How might containing your own energy more benefit you and your partner/s? 


LIBRA | September 23-October 23

question - When do you know what you want?
meditation - discernment
assignment - It’s easy for you to conflate what you want with what someone else wants, or what you’re supposed to want, etc. So take some time outside of sexuality and eroticism itself to reflect on what you want, what desires you might have that don’t usually have space to arise. If you struggle doing this, just meditate simply on your lower body, your pelvis, and ask it about desire. Try not to move into analysis, just pay attention and see what arises. Act on it at some later time, when you’ve gotten more comfortable with it. Let your desire be something you care for, like a friend.


SCORPIO | October 23-November 21

question - What is the relationship between your sexual life and the rest of your life?
meditation - integration
assignment - How much of your sexuality is shared or integrated with the rest of your life? How much of it do you think should be? Are there things you hide about your sexuality? How might it shift your sexuality and your life if you didn’t hide those things? What about your desire itself? How much permission do you feel to express it? Do you worry people will use your desire against you and so you don’t share it? Take some time to reflect on your expression of sexuality as you move into this next year of your life - it’s an important part of your vitality and the more conscious you can be with it the more balance you can allow with it. 


SAGITTARIUS | November 22-December 21

question - When do you listen during sex?
meditation - a vessel for receiving
assignment - As containing naturally more outward moving energy, it can deepen your relationship to yourself and your partner/s to practice deep listening surrounding sex. Listen to as subtle of sounds and information as you can. Try to listen in psychic or physical locations where you never have before. See what this does to your sense of connection and awareness during sex.  


CAPRICORN | December 22-January 19

question - When do you experience a feeling of abandon during sex?
meditation - primal
assignment - Move into your body during sex this week. Don’t turn it into something on a to do list, but do set aside time to allow this to happen. Intend for it be more physical and a place where you don’t have to keep track of anything. What rules are you following sexually that it would benefit you to break?



AQUARIUS | January 20 to February 18

question - When do you let yourself desire even when you can’t understand it?meditation - bright and light
assignment - Give yourself permission for your personal experience in sexuality this week. What specifically you desire, whether or not it’s ‘justified’, or logical, or makes sense intellectually. How would your sex life change if you fully embraced your personal experience and sexual world? 

 

PISCES | February 19 to March 20

question - How do you make space for all parts of your sexuality?
meditation - spaciousness
assignment - Make space and time to look at what you avoid or deny as related to your sexuality. What desires could you make more room for? What fears could you benefit from looking at directly? All of this softly, without judgment, just as a way to become more intimate with yourself.

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Destruction and Healing

The Sun enters Scorpio this week to join Mercury, Jupiter, and Venus in retrograde. And on Wednesday, the Sun and Venus will be conjunct opposite the Full Moon in Taurus conjunct Uranus in Taurus. If you don’t know what that means, it means shit is gonna be lit. A LOT going on. All this Scorpio energy can point us toward what is typically hidden from our view, the underworld of our psyches, individually and collectively. What we share with each other, what we don’t, how we trust and open, how we stay closed and paranoid.

Instead of being fearful of this, or avoiding or dreading it, we have the opportunity to meet it directly. Hello darkness! Without you, I could not perceive light. Scorpio is the energy of shapeshifting power and transformation. Within it lies the capacity for destruction and the capacity to heal - to both extremes. So - how will you connect to and be open to this energy? How will you flow downstream with it, and even maybe recognize the pain that it might reveal as potent, as life-giving?

These horoscopes are rituals and or assignments, specifically designed for moving toward and embracing the openness that this Full Moon can offer. If these don’t resonate, please do come up with your own and give yourself time to register the shifts happening, the opportunity of them.


ARIES | March 21-April 19

Question - What is your relationship to progress?
Meditation - a spiral.
Assignment - Find a circular path through your house or outside where you live and walk it a certain number of times (You pick the right number) as a meditation this week. Contemplate how you understand how your life to be progressing, and where you might be freed up by not having to progress. Or by rethinking what progress is.

 

TAURUS | April 20-May 20

Question - What are your new influences?
Meditation - blooming
Assignment - Find a new book or writing of some kind to read out loud to someone you love. Listen to the sound of your own voice reading, let it be slow, let yourself make sounds and listen at the same time. Then ask someone to do the same for you. As many times as needed.

 

GEMINI | May 21-June 20

Question - What is your daily tactile experience?
Meditation - touch.
Assignment - Find a sensory, tactile experience to replace at least one hour of your screen time this week. Something you do that is about touch, and your experience of it, and attending to this experience in a focused way. Let this touch be spirit and aliveness, the things you need it to be, helping you return to your body.

 

CANCER | June 21-July 22

Question - What are you shedding, or what needs to be shed?
Meditation - leaves falling.
Assignment - Take a walk somewhere with a lot of plants and trees if possible. Focus on the ground as you go. Move very slowly. Notice what is being shed, what is dropping from all the creatures above. What is being broken down further into something newly rich? What is it mixing with? What are the chemical reactions involved? As you pay attention to the ground on this walk, gather items for an altar to make in your home. When you return home place the objects there, and meditate on what needs to be shed, by you, now.

 

LEO | July 23-August 22

Question - What does your connection to the ground look like?
Meditation - energy from the ground
Assignment - Choose an activity that you do often, and experiment with doing it on the ground in some way. Put as much of your body on the ground as possible as you do this activity. How often do you notice your body held by gravity, on the earth? How do your feet interact with the earth? Do you take it as a foregone conclusion? Let the earth nourish you by bringing awareness to this physical connection you have to it - get lower more often this week.

 

VIRGO | August 23-September 22

Question - How far can you see in your daily life?
Meditation - horizon lines
Assignment - Create a daily meditation this week where you find a spot you can see the farthest and spend at least seven minutes staring at this horizon, this farthest point. Let this activity pull your attention back and out, to the vastness. A big, old, patient, wide view.


LIBRA | September 23-October 23

Question - How do you connect to others in your body?
Meditation - hands as conduits of energy
Assignment - Find someone who is willing to hold hands with you and create a time this week where you ask them to hold hands as long as you both can. Just hold hands, don’t do anything else, and let there be a period of this time where you are both silent. Then after a while, talk about what you feel as you hold hands. Make sure you don’t have interruptions. If you can’t find anyone to do this with, do it with your own hands holding each other.


SCORPIO | October 23-November 21

Question - How do you relate to external extremes?
Meditation - opposites create each other
Assignment - If you live in a place that gets cold, go outside, and spend time walking or lying on the ground so that your body gets cold. Let yourself feel all the sensations of your body as you are cold. How do you know you are cold? What does it feel like in your lungs? On the top of your head? In your legs? Once you get as cold as feels good to you, get inside to somewhere warm. Let yourself feel all of the sensations as your body warms. How does it warm? What happens? What gets warm first? When do you get too warm? If you don’t live in a place that is cold, and you have hot water, alternate hot and cold in the shower. Create an experience for yourself where you can perceive temperature and come back into your body through sensing these differences. Move into this next year of your life as awake as possible!


SAGITTARIUS | November 22-December 21

Question - What do you avoid doing?
Meditation - turning toward it
Assignment - Choose a simple task that you really don’t like doing - something that you avoid - and find a new way to do it this week. Do it with ceremony, as if you are showing a small child how to do it, or as if you are doing it AS a small child. With no hurry, with no aversion. Practice this way and see what happens. What IS avoiding? What does it do to your psyche? How does it feel? How does it feel to not avoid? What is the opposite of avoiding?


CAPRICORN | December 22-January 19

Question - Who are your rebellious influences?
Meditation - friends as influencers
Assignment - Find a person in your life who you consider to be impractical, or ungrounded in some way. Someone who seems to make decisions in a very different way than you. Interview them this week. Ask them about how they think, how they make decisions, how they carry on. Just listen and try to be as open as possible to their perspective. What does their perspective help you register about your own perspective as a perspective at all?


AQUARIUS | January 20 to February 18

Question - How much space do you give your creativity?
Meditation - creation energy
Assignment - Find a gentle repetitive task to do while you reflect on your own creation energy. What season is your creativity in? How much space and time do you give it to help you live, to nourish you? Do you find yourself not allowing your own creative force to exist, or is there a way you hold it back because you don’t think this personal impulse is important enough? What forms might this energy take if you gave it more space and time? Look at what the stories are that you tell about where and how it can’t live. Remember that when you reflect in this way, and you potentially see things that are painful, you are seeing them! Seeing is so much of healing.

 

PISCES | February 19 to March 20

Question - What do you do that’s fun and serves no purpose?
Meditation - fun as a purpose itself
Assignment - This can feel like a heavy time, but that’s why it will help when empaths like you make it a practice to find the light and fun. This too is essential. Give yourself at least an hour this week to do something that feels easy and fun. If you don’t know what that is, all the more reason to give it a try.

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MORE REFLECTIONS ON SHOULD

So much of the suffering that I see for the people I give readings to has to do with an unconscious assumption that things shouldn’t be like this. Something shouldn’t be ‘wrong’. I ‘should’ be happy, or okay with this. Or this problem wouldn’t be a problem to other people, or it’s not that bad, so I should feel differently about it, or just get over it, etc. Especially common is the thought - I shouldn’t be having such a hard time with this.

Whatever this is.

This thought is harmful because it’s becomes a way that we’re fighting with reality. Feeling some way about some situation, and then adding the judgment that you should feel or experience it differently, makes it worse. Judging other people for how they are feeling about some situation also makes their situation harder, not easier, and makes it less likely that they will stop feeling that way about it.

This judgment is especially invisible when it’s enacted on ourselves - we don’t even see it as an action or a problem usually - because it is so habitual. “I’m so stressed about money. But I shouldn’t be stressed about money because I’m not starving.” “I’m stressed about this job I have that I know isn’t in my highest good, and I’m thinking about quitting, but I shouldn’t because it’s a job so many people would love to have.”

Insert whatever your stressors are in the above statements. You can almost always find millions of people with way bigger and more challenging problems than you. And! Being in contact with experiences vastly different from our own is SUCH an important part of mental health, societal change, the survival of the planet.

But! When we’re in these moments of stress and we say these things, it’s not really coming from that place of truly seeking to expand our own perspective. It’s coming from the place where fear and shame prevent us from really facing whatever our reality is. When you dismiss your own stress because you think it shouldn’t be that big of a deal, you’re actually just denying your own stress. Which does not make it go away. The truth is it doesn’t matter if it’s someone else’s dream job, or if other people are way poorer than you - the stress is still present if it’s present.

So instead of dismissing our stress or saying it shouldn’t be this way - and one good way you can notice if you are doing this is if you find yourself saying the word ‘should’ - what happens if we ask questions about it? Like, Oh! I notice stress is present. What is the story it is telling me? What other perspectives might help me alleviate it? What happens if I can’t alleviate it? What can I do instead - how can I accept it or at least acknowledge it, so that I might understand it better?

In this context a huge thing I find astrology helps with is to pull back from immediate circumstances and look at the deeper transformation occurring through these circumstances. They look really different for different people. For example, the Saturn Return, a transit that happens for everyone at a certain time, is in part about consciously claiming your adulthood - your complete self, not just your reactionary childhood self. For some this takes place in the form of a marriage, or a divorce, or having a baby, or getting really sick, or moving, or losing a job. For some it takes the form of very little outward change, and a significant inward shift. Some people go through it avoiding the change as much as possible, and not much happens. I say this as a reminder that we can’t know what will be the hardest or should be the hardest thing for ourselves or others, and it’s really a waste of energy to judge this.

It’s self-loving and world-loving to do what is in front of you. With as little judgment of what ‘should’ be going on as possible.


ARIES | March 21-April 19

Question - What if your identity was independent from your ability to do things?
Meditation - floating
Assignment - Pull your attention away from power dynamics and into a child’s perspective. Return to your gift for loving the new, and if there isn’t apparent newness in your life, practice seeing newly. Because the truth is there is never not a new moment. Don’t skip over things with your speed - ask more questions if you think you know, until you remember that you don’t. Remembering that you don’t know can feel free and light.

 

TAURUS | April 20-May 20

Question - What habits nourish your life?
Meditation - walking / repetitive movement
Assignment - Take stock of the habits that nourish your life and the ones that exhaust you or drain your life. Be honest. Shift one in a small way this week. Use the spirit of Uranus, the electric and new, as it moves into Taurus, to make sustainable and needed changes in your life.

 

GEMINI | May 21-June 20

Question - What do you give your life to?
Meditation - commitment.
Assignment - Where does your commitment show up? Who are you committed to? What are you committed to? What is consciously a commitment in your life and what has become a default commitment? Examine the role of commitment in your life this week and see what you learn.

 

CANCER | June 21-July 22

Question - When and how do you get perspective?
Meditation - a high point, a vista.
Assignment - Find a viewpoint this week, go there. Whatever you are feeling personally about, give it to this place, let it leave you there. Cast a spell, say a prayer, let yourself be psychic as you are and release what is old and tired. Release the past with a gesture as simple as blinking. You will want to hold onto it, even if it’s really painful, because you are used to it. But you don’t have to.

 

LEO | July 23-August 22

Question - When are your exchanges transactional and when are they relational?
Meditation - lightness.
Assignment - Spend some time writing about what you expect from people, especially in your business / work arena. One way you can learn what you expect from people is when you’re disappointed in them. Are there any themes / patterns you can see there? How can this awareness help your relationships?

 

VIRGO | August 23-September 22

Question - Where is the stagnant qi in your body?
Meditation - easy movement
Assignment - Reflect on how you move stagnant energy in your life. What practices help you with this? Recommit to doing those things this week, at least two times. Use this time to move anything through that needs to be expelled. Practice this as a way to practice love instead of fear.


LIBRA | September 23-October 23

Question - When and how do you touch your own body?
Meditation - your ability to heal yourself.
Assignment - Touch your own body this week - the last week of Libra season - give yourself this gift as you transition into the next year of your life. Rub your feet. Rub your skull. Rub your belly. Masturbate - but don’t just do that. Spend some time touching your own body and thanking it for everything it has done this past year, and everything it will do this coming one.


SCORPIO | October 23-November 21

Question - What do you want to attend to as this year of your life comes to a close?
Meditation - pulling back your qi
Assignment - The things that nag at you, the relationships or situations that feel unfinished - what part do you have to play in these? What can you do, for yourself and / or for others that could help you feel ready for this upcoming year? It could be a ritual, or a conversation, or a pilgrimage to a particular place. Write about this and make a plan for yourself for whatever you’d like to do in this way before your birthday.


SAGITTARIUS | November 22-December 21

Question - What kind of lighting do you live with regularly?
Meditation - your own internal light
Assignment - Turn off your electricity as much as possible this week. Use candles. Sit in the light of candles. Watch the flame of a candle as a meditation. Electricity keeps us going at a certain pace, and turns our attention away from what is quiet and in the shadows - it keeps us able to stay busy. See what happens to your energy when you turn it off early in the evening, or take a day or half day to not use it if possible and see what you notice. This can be a way of attending to and cultivating your own energy and light.


CAPRICORN | December 22-January 19

Question - What if you just let yourself say exactly what you want to say?
Meditation - speaking freely
Assignment - What happens when you say what you mean, what you want to, and don’t edit or hold it back? When do you do that? Are you protecting yourself or others from something? Do you or they need protecting? Experiment with more free speech this week and see what happens. Your tendency is to be more careful, and this serves you well. But what happens when you aren’t?


AQUARIUS | January 20 to February 18

Question - Where is your core, your center?
Meditation - the center point of a circle
Assignment - You can think about others and systems and groups and broadly so much, there can be a forgetting of the self. You don’t need to actively create a self or preferences or anything like that, but what happens if you ask the question where is my center? Or what is my center? Play around with this idea, this question this week. See what it might do to your attention, to your thinking about others. Thinking about others is only possible if we have a sense of self which we imagine differs from them, so it benefits all to know what we think that self is made of.

 

PISCES | February 19 to March 20

Question - What are you avoiding or escaping?
Meditation - storms
Assignment - It’s easy for whatever you might be avoiding or escaping to become instantly bigger in your mind because you label it as something you are avoiding. But imagine if you could ask yourself that question, and answer, and maintain self-love through the process? Imagine if it was okay - if it was, would you even need to avoid it anymore?

October 8 Kate Maxey.jpg

Kate is an acupuncturist expressing the healing combination of Libra (aesthetics, harmony, balance) with Capricorn (grounding, practical, results-oriented). I asked Kate to respond to these questions as someone working in the healing arts, because I am fascinated with discovering and reframing the overlap between the political or collective impulse and the individual one. As a new mom, Kate is living in the center of these questions with a lot of grace as a healer and I’m so happy she has shared her beautiful perspective here.

Kate Maxey was born on a new moon in October, 1977.  She has a bunch of stuff in Libra with a Capricorn rising. She changed her last name in 1998 to her maternal grandmother’s maiden name; once the last name of an only daughter, it now lives on as the second last name of her own daughter, Azul. Kate has lived in over 30 homes in her life and as far as she can remember, usually took well to being the new girl. When she was growing up in Akron, Ohio she went to an all girls Catholic school and dreamed of becoming a lawyer and maybe going to Harvard- ha! Boy, did things not pan out that way (thank god). When her family moved back to California her life changed directions and she found her real self in the forests and oceans of Santa Cruz, in the liberal arts education that blew her little mind wide open and uncovered the Feminist inside, and in the diverse Goddess-loving community that destroyed insecurities left and right and implanted the wisdom that self-love and acceptance is key. Kate moved to SF in 2000 during which time she was a worker-owner at Other Avenues grocery store in the Sunset, went out dancing at least three nights per week and co-hosted “The Little Sister Show,” a pirate radio show out of her friend’s parent’s basement which focused on radical political announcements and raunchy or underground female Hip-Hop. She moved to NYC and then Barcelona in 2003-2005 where she worked as a life-drawing model, lived as a nanny and sold champagne and strawberries on the beach. The Shiatsu massage course that she took in SF in 2001 planted the seed of Yin/Yang Theory, so at 28 she moved back to the Bay (this time Oakland for 8 years) and embraced grad school for Chinese Medicine. She was lucky enough to find her acupuncture mentor at House of Qi in Bernal Heights with Joseph Chang with whom she worked and played from 2008-2017. Kate now posts up her practice at The Root in Noe Valley with her idols, The Midwives. She is married to a Basque Rock n’ Roller named Iban and they dream of one day making their home in the Basque Country on the Bizkaia coast. Kate is inspired to continue studying Chinese and Ayurvedic Medicine, Hatha and Yin Yoga, Astrology, Tarot, Buddhism, Spanish and Post-Partum love and wellness. She also has some creative ideas up her sleeve that involve alchemy, chandeliers and international handbooks that she one day hopes to share.  

When do you experience the most joy?

I have experienced the most joy watching my, now 11 month old, daughter laugh and squeal… and separately, on the dance floor with friends. My daughter, Azul, is an incredibly joyful spirit. Sometimes her laughter seems so knowing, like real experienced laughter of someone who realizes the value of a good time. We joke that she is the reincarnation of a 17th century little fat prostitute in a brothel (with her chubby knees and wrists and just a few teeth) who has no self-consciousness and just wants to have fun! Ha! Dance floors are few for me these days, but I have experienced bliss many times in the company of some of my favorite people as I vibrate to the music, the crowd and hours of nothing but purely buzzing around and enjoying. Hand and hand with Joy, but different, is peace. And Peace I experience in Nature (ocean, forrest, hot springs), hands down.  

Can you talk about the relationship between your own healing and your clients' healing? How do they intersect? Where do they diverge?

I consider myself fortunate that I have chosen a work path that intersects with my own spiritual and healing path. In an essence, this is why I chose Chinese Medicine: because I knew that I would never get bored, that it is a way of looking at the world which mirrors our bodies and visa verse… the lens is always applicable to me. I experience healing every time I work with a patient, simply by quieting my own mind to listen and focus on the moment with them. It becomes a welcome meditation- to slow down or become more alert, depending on what my day was like leading up to my work time. Either way, I know that what I am emitting becomes a part of my patient’s experience, so my first step to my own healing always begins with my breath. At the very least, if I allow my breath to be deep, slow and clearing then I can be open to my intuitive self as I choose points to hold or acupuncture for my patient. It is a gift that I have a job that reminds me to do this.  

Do you relate to the Libra tendency to think about other people so much that you don't know what you want or need? Or being conflict-averse? If so, how do you manage those tendencies?

Hmmmmm…. I definitely spend a lot of time thinking about the needs, desires and struggles of the people that I love, or those that I feel responsible to. This can get jumbled in my needs and can often translate to me spending a TON of time staying in touch and getting back to people so that they feel my support or presence. While my relationships give me so much (the world, really), it does at times get taxing and perhaps keeps me from having more energy and time to get quiet with myself and create from there.  

I am conflict-averse, especially when it comes to good friends. It can make me nervous just thinking about it. That being said, I can tend toward direct communication, or as my friend Timmy once said, “Kate drops truth bombs.” While I do follow the Libran tendency of diplomacy, seeing both or various sides of a situation, and having empathy… sometimes someone else’s patterns or stance appears very clear to me and it seems better shared than sugar-coated. Sometimes with my Libra sun and moon and Capricorn Rising (among other Air and Earth planets) things can boil down to a matter of logic or justice and I need to realize that others might have completely different motivations or truths in their worlds… or just need me to be patient with them. I’m still working on when it’s the right time to drop truth bombs and when to “un-relate” or disengage and allow the ones I care about to live without knowing my point of view. Libras like to share, you know, so just staying quiet is hard!

How has becoming a parent affected the above tendencies and/or your default habits?

Well, to be very honest, parenthood has heightened my anxiety (a long-present default) which has me searching for even more efficiency, more strategies that work, more fairness and more “rightness.” So, obviously, my husband gets the brunt of this. I think the hardest thing hands down about becoming a mother for me has been that all of the tools that I have collected over the years to ground my anxiety, decrease body pain, connect to Spirit, create magic, or sort through my feelings became almost out of reach for me due to extreme fatigue and minimal time alone. Of course, you can theoretically say that “spending time with your baby can be a meditation,” “stretch on the ground with your baby while she’s playing,” or “meditate before you go to bed,” and this is all true, but the time and ability to focus or look inward becomes so side-lined when it can fill a whole day just covering the basics for you and your baby. Ha! You gotta laugh. Now that Azul is coming up on a year, I feel the portals to time for myself opening again. I began to feel it when she was 9.5 months out of my womb. She has been sleeping through the night for the last couple of months, so that makes a big difference on the mama-zombie factor. Relationship wise, my husband and I are constantly navigating how to support each other getting the alone time that we need to feel sane and authentic, as well as relay our needs within the relationship. That’s where the management of truth-bombs gets hard when I feel like I (as a woman, as a mother, as a manifestor, as a witch) can see the bigger picture, feel responsible to manage it somehow so that it’s not forgotten, and want everyone on board with a vision (in a collaborative way, of course)!

Do you feel any tension between healing / transformation on a personal level and a collective level, and if so, how do you deal with that? How does your work factor into that?

I don’t think we can heal on a collective level without simultaneously healing on personal levels. Just as we know in Chinese Medicine and other holistic modalities, you can’t separate parts of a whole without taking into account how they reflect and influence each other. In the macrocosm of the universe we are microcosmic representations of the imbalances or synchronicity of the bigger picture. Just as I can treat shoulder pain by considering your diet and putting needles in your foot, I believe that we can affect the vibration of the planet and other beings in it by looking at our own health, a seemingly separate affair. The more joy, peace, connection to the Earth and to our own hearts that we feel the more respect we will know how to show each other and the more aligned we can all become in supporting a collective healing. Self-care really shouldn’t be a luxury, but should be supported as a good deed for society. 


ARIES | March 21-April 19

Question - What quiet or subtle actions might you miss in your busyness?
Meditation - breathing as political action.
Assignment - Still with the breathing this week. New Moon in Libra today means a lot of Libra energy this week - opposite your Aries sun - it might be jarring or it might be calming depending on what you need right now. This you can practice trusting - life is here to give you what you need. Meanwhile, you can help this process, and your ability to trust that, by breathing. This is probably frustrating for you as such an action-oriented being but try to breathe as your action, and see what happens. What if your breathing was political? What if it was a way into your own truth, right now? What if it helped you connect to everything you thought was missing?

 

TAURUS | April 20-May 20

Question - What is the relationship between your body and spirit?
Meditation - flowers.
Assignment - Consider the relationship between matter and spirit, or the material and the more ephemeral this week. How do flowers regard their own spirit, or their own bodies? What do they know about how to be with themselves that you can learn from? Are there any ways you get stuck in the material world and don’t remember to nourish the unseen in life? Attend to this relationship. Breathe air outside and let yourself contemplate these things without a goal.

 

GEMINI | May 21-June 20

Question - How much can you hold of what you receive?
Meditation - pelvic bowl.
Assignment - You’re such a connector and a fluid mover / thinker that holding, reserving, and maintaining can be hard. So what have you received lately that needs to be held in a reservoir? Is it money? Is it material resource? Is it your own psychic attention? Ask yourself about this and visualize your pelvis as a holder of energy and resource. Then ask your body what it needs to be able to contain resource as much as you need right now. Listen to the answer and act!

 

CANCER | June 21-July 22

Question - Where do you eddy out in emotions?
Meditation - connecting while staying in your own energy
Assignment - The Libra new moon can be an opportunity to you, even though your sun is in square with this energy - sometimes discordant energies can help spark a new, needed phase for us. Ask Libra what it can teach you right now about pulling out of your tendency to stay in the emotional realm and see things newly from further up in the sky. Ask what it can teach you about connecting to others even when you are inside of the world of emotions.

 

LEO | July 23-August 22

Question - What do you withhold that might make your life more painful?
Meditation - sharing your brightness freely.
Assignment - You have a light, that fire light, that comes naturally to you. When do you share it freely, without strings? When do you share it conditionally? Find a new way to be generous with your light this week, and see what happens. Find someone or something to share this with, and notice how you feel.

 

VIRGO | August 23-September 22

Question - What do you miss out on because of your initial impressions?
Meditation - citrus
Assignment - In the speed of your judgment, you can miss out on many things - including your own talents, your own victories, your own arrival moments. And other people - their nuances, the full range of their humanity. So experiment with pulling back on the judgments this week, in a soft way, not recriminating yourself for judging. After all judging is how we move through life - we decide what works for us and what doesn’t. But notice your initial impressions of any situation (especially those involving yourself and your work) and bring a little judgment to the judgments themselves! See what happens.


LIBRA | September 23-October 23

Question - How much of your day includes a feeling of indecision?
Meditation - feet on the floor
Assignment - Experiment with acting more and deliberating less. Find a small thing you can practice this on that doesn’t feel too big, and see what happens this week. This can be a way of bringing more awareness to your decision making process and illuminating where you eddy out.


SCORPIO | October 23-November 21

Question - What information do you receive from nature?
Meditation - nature is psychic
Assignment - Spend time noticing what information you receive from your environment, the outside environments you are in. What is this information? How does it help your life? How might you listen to it more often / completely so that it could help even more?


SAGITTARIUS | November 22-December 21

Question - Where are the comfortable places in your life?
Meditation - comfort as access to opening
Assignment - Comfort can be something that prevents us from growing or it can nurture us so that we can grow more. This week, spend time noticing where you feel comfortable and where you don’t. If you notice there is very little comfort, or comfort all the time, experiment with bringing this into balance by creating more of what is missing.


CAPRICORN | December 22-January 19

Question - How much of your days feel hard?
Meditation - Letting it be easy.
Assignment - See if there are small ways you can infuse more ease into your life. It doesn’t have to be changing everything, but notice if you’re continually reinforcing the hardness of a certain situation by constantly meditating on its hardness. Seek out the places that it feels easy, even if they are very small moments, like walking to your car, or lying down at night to go to bed. Don’t miss the moments that it’s easy - that’s most of how you let it be easy.


AQUARIUS | January 20 to February 18

Question - What have you been eating lately and how does it contribute to your mental state?
Meditation - warming, slowing foods.
Assignment - Spend time focusing on your food this week. What foods help your nervous system calm down more, what foods ramp it up? How can your food nurture your airy self and help bring balance to it?

 

PISCES | February 19 to March 20

Question - How often is your body in a position of ease?
Meditation - attending to your body
Assignment - Notice what positions your body is in through the day and night. What does your position look and feel like at night? Where do you sit and stand during the day? Are there places you can bring more ease to your body by making small adjustments? Think about your body being in positions of dignity, and see how it feels to bring that to your various places and postures of your life.

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SAYING YES TO LIFE

It’s been a devastating last week over here in the US of A. Most of us respond to the spectacle of the national political situation with rage and/or hopelessness. We give up. Or we yell at everyone to call their senators and or blow up the white house, etc. Honestly, any response seems ‘rational’, to a completely irrational farce of a situation.

I bring this up because the tendency to want to either take dramatic, unsustainable actions or totally give up is such a human, common thing I see in myself and in others. This is the thinking that holds us back SO MUCH. We miss out on so much possibility, in what we want to eat, in how much we meditate, in changes we want to make to our relationships, to our jobs, to our finances, to our political nightmares, etc, because we think so short-term and so dramatically. It’s not going to do anything to make this small change so I’m not going to change at all, we tell ourselves.

This thinking keeps us in the trap that we call the bleak future, but actually, it is just us being depressed in the present.

I’m not even saying that what we do will lead to some political improvement. I don’t know that. What I’m saying is that what we do matters right now, in how it makes us feel, in this moment, with the people we live with and encounter - because as small as that seems, it’s the impact that most of us will have to show for at the end of our lives. So we need to do these things that represent our own saying yes to life, to each other, because of how it makes us feel, not because of what it might do. And if these things we do end up changing something bigger, that is a beautiful bi-product, but we do not have control over that. If we foreclose on possibility because of how dark this shit looks, then we foreclose on ourselves and this very moment, which is actually all we have. This very moment. In which to act in a way that says yes to life. Whatever that means to you.


ARIES | March 21-April 19

Question - How is your breathing lately?
Meditation - bright cream.
Assignment - Breathing. Resist the urge to make it more complicated than that. Return to the breath, if you do it enough, it really will provide what you are seeking.

 

TAURUS | April 20-May 20

Question - What are you harvesting this week because of what you set into motion last week?
Meditation - the elasticity of time.
Assignment - Harvesting. If you don’t already know what you are harvesting, make it your mission this week to see what is being harvested in your life right now. There is something - many things in fact.

 

GEMINI | May 21-June 20

Question - When do you seek information below you?
Meditation - dusty rose.
Assignment - Look down and in. Connect through the earth instead of through people and ideas. Move your awareness down beneath your feet, over and over.

 

CANCER | June 21-July 22

Question - What have you been doing for others that feels like a gift to yourself?
Meditation - ginger.
Assignment - Cooking. Return to this comfortable place. Cook something you love, let it be easy. Do it for yourself and for someone else.

 

LEO | July 23-August 22

Question - What is being neglected in your life?
Meditation - focus.
Assignment - Return to what is worthy of your attention. Do not miss out on the spirit of your life - on display at every moment in front of you - because you are fulfilling what seem to be pressing obligations. Do not wait.

 

VIRGO | August 23-September 22

Question - What do you look at in your work space?
Meditation - the relaxation of sunset.
Assignment - Revise what you see on your work space in some way this week. Make sure what you are seeing includes a symbol of the sacred, whatever that means to you. Let it help you relax into your life as it is.


LIBRA | September 23-October 23

Question - What will you sow now for the upcoming year of your life?
Meditation - living soil.
Assignment - Sowing. Take an action that is a movement toward something you want in the future. Make it a ritual. Give yourself time to adequately sow for the future.


SCORPIO | October 23-November 21

Question - Where do you find shelter?
Meditation - rooted to the earth.
Assignment - Tend to your home this week. Give it new life. Find a new way to let it be a refuge, even if it’s inadequate or stressful in some way.


SAGITTARIUS | November 22-December 21

Question - What can you learn from stillness?
Meditation - stillness.
Assignment - Find short periods of time to be still this week. Ask a question at the beginning of the stillness to sit with while you are being still. Use your curiosity and seeking mind to guide you into the activity of stillness.  


CAPRICORN | December 22-January 19

Question - What do you miss in your life because it’s not material?
Meditation - ephemeral, unseeable.
Assignment - Investigate the nonmaterial this week. What do you miss because it doesn’t count as real in your mind, including your own contributions that aren’t monetary or material? Be with these things, let them become more real by meditating on them.


AQUARIUS | January 20 to February 18

Question - What might life be asking you to see right now?
Meditation - deep blue shimmering.
Assignment - What is the opportunity in your struggle? Look to nature to help you see what you might be blind to - a perspective that will reframe your experience. Spend time in nature to cultivate this new seeing. Don’t try too hard, just put your body in a place that feels alive to you.

 

PISCES | February 19 to March 20

Question - What intuition are you not acknowledging?
Meditation - flexibility of sea legs.
Assignment - Let yourself be good at what you are good at this week. Let your intuition in. Even if you don’t act on it, acknowledge it. Everything in us just wants to be acknowledged, and the more you do this, the more peace you’ll feel.