astrological

Tarot Talk

May, 2019

Eight of Pentacles

(The Two of Pentacles card is from the artist Ciro Marchetti http://www.ciromarchetti.com/)**

This month we are going to talk about the Eight of Pentacles. As always, here is a bit of basic foundational information about the Eights of the Tarot Minor Arcana, and in particular our Eight of Pentacles.

A Tarot deck has 78 cards. There are 22 Major Arcana cards, with numbers from 0 to 21; the Majors usually deal with broader and more far-reaching life experience issues, archetypes that are easy for us to identify with and connect with at some point in our lives. There are 56 Minor Arcana cards that are customarily grouped into four categories or suits that represent the four elements (sometimes called “Pips” or “Pip Cards”), with numbers from Ace to 10; the Minors usually deal with day-to-day issues.

The Eight of Pentacles is a part of the Minor Arcana. We already know that the easiest way to get a decent understanding of a Minor Arcana card is to examine its number, or in the case of Court Cards, its rank, and to examine its suit. In this case, we are dealing with the number 8, and the suit of Pentacles/Disks/Coins, and understanding these two categories of information will give us a good initial take on our card this month.

First, let’s look at the traditional image of the Eight of Pentacles. The image on this card usually shows a man dressed in a smock or other work clothes who is sitting on a bench, working on a Pentacle. Surrounding him are seven other Pentacles, already completed. In the background is a well-maintained walled city. The sky behind the man is light purple, or blue that gradually darkens toward the upper edge of the card. Some cards show the man sitting at a desk working by candlelight in front of a window that shows a darkening evening sky, or a sky lit with the purples, blues, oranges and pinks of a sunset. Others show the man working outside, with the doorway of a richly appointed building behind him. Some show the worker as a woman, surrounded by plants or in a kitchen or working at a table. In every image, the sense is of a skilled craftsman or woman working long hours and dedicated to his or her purpose, without being distracted by time passed or the outside world.

Let’s look at the number 8 next. I see the number 8 as telling me that I need to consciously act or choose the next step, and that I need to believe the next step I choose will bring some resolution. It is easier to understand the number 8 (which is about deliberately reacting) if we understand the number 7 (which is about the pause that occurs as growth slows and the beginning of degeneration approaches). The number 8 offers the concept of a remedy or a reaction to the pause and approaching degeneration of the 7, traditionally involving a choice of some kind, usually either to stick with what we have, or try for more. This means the energies of the number 8 can bring the opportunity to build, or to destroy. In the Tarot, the number 8 cards are kind of a kick in the pants, telling us we already have the skills we need to move forward, so move already. Just by looking at the number of our card, we already know that the Eight of Pentacles is going to be a card of action or manifestation.

The suit of Pentacles/Disks/Coins corresponds with the playing card suit of Diamonds, the cardinal direction of north, and the element of Earth. In its natural state, the element of Earth is cool and dry. Like Water, when amassed Earth has weight; it is able to bind together or shape the other elements. Water and Earth bind together to make mud, and a lake is shaped by the Earth that supports it. Earth energies are tangible, stable, and practical, and they are slow to change.

The cards of this suit are about the physical, earthly world, our physical bodies, and everything we need in order to maintain our earthly world and those physical bodies, including health and exercise. Pentacles cards talk about fertility, prosperity, and the wealth that can bring both physical shelter and mental and emotional pleasure. Pentacles cards can show a possible outcome or end result of our efforts, the product of our labors; they can give information about material manifestations of all kinds. These cards can represent discipline and diligence, and an interest in quality rather than quantity, but they can also indicate the influence of greed and avarice, and the lack of an ability to access or be aware of resources.

Like the other cards of the Tarot, the Eight of Pentacles has an astrological correspondence. The Eight of Pentacles represents our Sun when it is in the astrological sign Virgo.

The Sun is the star at the center of our solar system around which the planets revolve; it provides our Earth with the heat and light necessary for life as we know it. The Sun travels through the twelve signs of the zodiac in one year, spending about a month in each sign. The Sun is described as benign and favorable, and is usually thought to represent the conscious ego, the self and its expression, personal power, pride and authority, leadership qualities and the “life force.” In Chinese astrology, the Sun represents Yang, the active, assertive masculine life principle. In Indian astrology, the Sun is called Surya and represents the soul, ego, vitality, kingship, highly placed persons, government and the archetype of The Father.

The sign of Virgo, the Virgin, is the sixth sign in the zodiac. Those born under this sign have a strong sense of service, and feel most satisfied when helping others. They sometimes come off as cold or unemotional, but they are actually cautious, always sizing things up before acting. Virgos are meticulous, practical, intelligent, reliable, analytical and intelligent; of course, they are also over-critical, too conservative, and harsh. Virgos exist within the mind, appearing calm and collected on the outside, but lots going on inside. They are pure and honest, never malicious, and always trying to figure out how to improve things.

The Sun in astrology symbolizes the core essence of who you are, your individuality and sense of self, and what motivates you, and why. When the Sun arrives in Virgo, the focus is on getting down to business. Motivation now is more about practical concerns and outlets for skills, talents and abilities, with an emphasis on being useful. This combination of the Sun and Virgo can be expressed on both physical and intellectual levels, and it allows us to integrate personal resources in a way most effective for utilization. Planning and attention to detail make things happen, especially when there is something physical or tangible to focus on.

Minor Arcana cards also correspond with a sephira on the Tree of Life. The Eights correspond to the sephira (or sphere) of Hod. Hod (or Glory) is the eighth sephira on the Tree, the third on the Pillar of Form/Restriction, and represents science, teaching and the intellect. Hod corresponds with Mercury, the planet that receives the most light from our Sun, and working with Hod can stimulate the workings of the mind and provide illumination, but this kind of work presents dangers, too, especially if the process of shining light in the dark corners exposes any shadow issues. If you think about it, the Eights represent some kind of conscious use of the intellect rather than feelings or emotions, often in order to maintain control or harmony.

Let’s sum up what we have found. The number 8 tells of deliberate action or remediation or response to a slowdown that could be bringing some kind of discomfort. The suit of Pentacles tells of the physical, earthly world, our physical bodies, and everything we need in order to maintain them. The image on the card tells of a skilled craftsman working long hours with dedication, and without being distracted by time passed or the outside world. The Sun speaks of the individuality, sense of self and motivation, and Virgo tells of meticulous and cautious focus that plays the long game and encourages service to others. The sephira of Hod tells of the intellect and of knowing why something works.

The Eight of Pentacles in the Shadowscapes Tarot is awesome; the image on the card is of a spider and her dew-dusted web. She works hard, weaving her web through the night, carefully placing each strand to be most effective. Her work is almost like a dance as she spins, places the thread, gives it a twist and moves on, creating a pattern that is both beautiful and useful. This card tells of the craftsman who possesses great patience and who is attentive to details. It calls us to seek out knowledge, pursue a higher understanding, and become absorbed in a project that uses our hands and body and mind to create.

The Llewellyn Welsh Eight of Pentacles shows a skilled craftsman sitting on a bench under a tree, working on a Pentacle with seven completed Pentacles being displayed. There is a cat resting quietly at his feet and chirping birds in the tree above him but he is not distracted; instead he focuses intently on his task. This card is about employment, commissions, schedules and deadlines, creative work, and knowledge and experience. It is about skills and talents put to good use, and about finding one’s niche in life.

The Thoth Tarot Eight of Disks is called “Prudence,” and to Crowley it signifies “intelligence lovingly applied to material matters, especially those of the agriculturist, the artificer and the engineer.” The image on this card is of a tree with eight flowers, four on each side, and a substantial straight trunk that is well-rooted in the ground. This version of the Eight of Disks is somewhat more passive than most; after all, prudence and its wait and see attitude isn’t active at all. This card can be about being penny wise and pound foolish, being over-careful in small things at great expense, and about a gain of ready money in small sums, as well as hoarding, lack of enterprise, or the cultivation of land.

The Neo Tarot Eight of Pentacles shows a person with long hair in a single braid streaming behind her, leaning over a stairway with one foot a step higher than the other, balancing a container on one palm and reaching up to paint a surface several stairs above her with the other hand. There are four Pentacles lined up horizontally above her and four below her. The card tells us that we have big dreams and a lot of promise, and if we work hard and pay attention to detail, we will get the return of a fruitful end result. We may not be receiving the recognition we want right now, but we should still keep our head down and perfect what we are doing, for this is a long game. We are told that it is okay to feel frustrated at the slow pace, but once we have produced something we should allow ourselves to celebrate our accomplishment.

The Eight of Coins from the Gateway to the Divine Tarot shows a mature man studying blueprints for Coins in a comfortable room next to a well-lit window, with green drapes pulled aside to allow the light into the room. Above him hangs finished Coins decorated with sacred geometry, and before him on the table are more blueprints, two blank Coins, and several tools. This card tells of competence, diligence and the ability to get a lot done by focusing on one task at a time and giving each task the care and attention it deserves. Perseverance is the key, and learning, practicing, and finally mastering the skill is the reward. We are reminded that practice makes perfect, and that there is both pleasure and profit to be had from honest hard work.

The Eight of Pentacles is about progress mixed with education. This card is not about instant success, but rather it tells of patiently learning skills that will eventually bring profit. The Eight of Pentacles warns us that we will need to work hard now in order to reap rewards in the future. The work may be repetitive and unrewarding, but it lends itself to the strength of a habit or a belief. The Eight of Pentacles encourages us to learn while we can because what we learn now may very well be of great use to us tomorrow. After all, in order to become a master, we must first be accepted as an apprentice.

** We Feature the art of Ciro Marchetti as part of Tarot Talk. You can view his work and Decks at http://www.ciromarchetti.com/.

The Gilded Tarot (Book and Tarot Deck Set) on Amazon

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About the Author:

Raushanna is a lifetime resident of New Jersey. As well as a professional Tarot Reader and Teacher, she is a practicing Wiccan (Third Degree, Sacred Mists Coven), a Usui Reiki Master/Teacher, a certified Vedic Thai-Yoga Massage Bodyworker, a 500-hr RYT Yoga Teacher specializing in chair assisted Yoga for movement disorders, and a Middle Eastern dance performer, choreographer and teacher.  Raushanna bought her first Tarot deck in 2005, and was instantly captivated by the images on the cards and the vast, deep and textured messages to be gleaned from their symbols. She loves reading about, writing about, and talking about the Tarot, and anything occult, mystical, or spiritual, as well as anything connected to the human subtle body. She has published a book, “The Emerald Tablet: My 24-Day Journal to Understanding,” and is currently working on a book about the Tarot, pathworking and the Tree of Life. Raushanna documents her experiences and her daily card throws in her blog, DancingSparkles.blogspot.com, which has been in existence since 2009. She and her husband, her son and step son, and her numerous friends and large extended family can often be found on the beaches, bike paths and hiking trails of the Cape May, NJ area.

The Emerald Tablet: My 24-Day Journal to Understanding on Amazon

Book Review – Moon Power: lunar rituals for connecting with your inner goddess by Simone Butler

March, 2019

Book Review
Moon Power
lunar rituals for connecting with your inner goddess
by Simone Butler
Published by Quarto Publishing Group
Pages: 208

Where the Moon appears in your birth chart* determines your emotional nature. Your moon sign indicates what makes you feel secure and what wisdom you’ve accumulated during past lives.

In “Moon Power: lunar rituals for connecting with your inner goddess,” Simone Butler provides information about the moon in each astrological sign.

“Identifying and honoring your lunar nature helps you feel comfortable in your skin,” she states in the book where she helps women connect with their primal, feminine, moon power.

My moon is in Scorpio and I devoured the 14 pages allotted to it. While there were some characteristics I do not believe I have (possessive and wealth-driven, but some who know me might disagree), the majority of the information was exactly right. I am intense, being in control makes me feel secure, I have undying passion and letting go is difficult for me.

For each moon sign are 14 pages providing such information as your lunar superpower, lunar shadow, sexual and karmic path. There is a page about Scorpio moon woman with a list of qualities, and roughly half a page dedicated to a “Modern Scorpio Moon Goddess” – in my case, Lady Gaga – and pages about an Ancient Scorpio Moon Goddess – for me, Lilith. Included in the information about her are ways to connect with her, her sacred animal and a suggestion for an altar to Lilith and when to visit it.

Each section also contains a new and a full moon ritual, things to do while the moon is in that sign, and questions for reflection and journaling.

Butler is an astrologer who follows the Wiccan path of her Celtic ancestors, but the activities, stories and rituals she presents are drawn from many cultures and are guided by her inner knowing. Butler’s intention is to help readers find more magic with the help of the moon.

Chapter 1 talks about the power of the moon, whom she calls “our cosmic mother,” and how to use it “to open our hearts and trust our intuition” so that we shift our consciousness from our head to our heart. It covers Luna as the soul mate for women, women’s link to the moon through her menstruation cycle. The influences of eight phases of the moon are explained: new moon, waxing crescent, first quarter, waxing gibbous, full moon, waning gibbous, last quarter and waning crescent.

“Your feelings are the most reliable conduit to the intuitive right-brain realm. To coax out your inner Goddess, start letting your true feelings rise up and find expression,” Butler writes in Chapter 2, then goes on to write about connecting to that inner Goddess.

Your friends will want to borrow this book to learn more about themselves by reading about their moon signs, but you might consider not letting it go, because you may want to perform the rituals and try an activity or two when the moon is in of the signs.

* At astroalchemy.com, readers can find their moon sign along with a multitude of other “ancient secrets for modern living” and astrological information by Simone Butler.

Moon Power: Lunar Rituals for Connecting with Your Inner Goddess on Amazon

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About the Author:

Lynn Woike was 50 – divorced and living on her own for the first time – before she consciously began practicing as a self taught solitary witch. She draws on an eclectic mix of old ways she has studied – from her Sicilian and Germanic heritage to Zen and astrology, the fae, Buddhism, Celtic, the Kabbalah, Norse and Native American – pulling from each as she is guided. She practices yoga, reads Tarot and uses Reiki. From the time she was little, she has loved stories, making her job as the editor of two monthly newspapers seem less than the work it is because of the stories she gets to tell. She lives with her large white cat, Pyewacket, in central Connecticut. You can follow her boards on Pinterest, and write to her at woikelynn at gmail dot com.

Book Review – The Witches’ Almanac, Issue 38, Spring 2019 to Spring 2020 – Animals: Friends and Familiars

February, 2019

Book Review
The Witches’ Almanac
Issue 38
Spring 2019 to Spring 2020
Animals: Friends and Familiars

Brightest Blessings


This issue contains a wealth of knowledge. You want to take your time reading this issue, snuggle next to the fire with a cup of tea or hot cocoa. You can tell that each article or story they chose was thought out. Some of the articles make you ponder your thoughts on subjects, while others just entertain you, they are so adorable.


You can learn a lot of lore, history and gain new insight on many topics. Some of the articles are shortened for the book, but they include links for further reading on those articles. The authors applied a lot of time and research to create each of their contributions, it inspired me to do further research on the various topics on my own.

The articles I found most interesting are…


Why & How Animal Omens Work – This article gives ideas and signs on how animals work with spirit and deities, share their knowledge and share insight when we are in deep thought or need help during moments of our life.

The Jade Emperor Race’s, How the Zodiac Signs Came to Be – This story I found entertaining and adorable. I didn’t know this story even existed. I think it is the perfect way to explain them. The book gave information on this year’s Chinese zodiac sign and a table listing this year’s preview and coming future date’s of animal signs in following years.

NikolaTesla – Was a very interesting read, very well thought out using his birth chart for astrology. This information I found uniquely designed to add intrigue to the story.

Merry Meeting of Dolores Ashcroft-Nowicki – I loved this article. Having her spend author interview time sharing her experiences and her knowledge about the society of the inner light. The article felt perfect just like you were in room with her. Even though they shorten her interview for the book, they provide a link to an audio file to further listen.

Corvids – This article was about using knowledge of certain beautiful birds, lore, and how to divine knowledge from birds of choice and messages associated with certain deities.

There are many more articles within this issue I found so inspiring I wish I could list them all! This book contains information on zodiac influences for coming spring 2019-2020, weather, mooncycles, explanations for gardening by Moonphases, astrological key information, eclipses, retrogrades for this spring 2019-2020, book reviews, and question about the craft you can send in to be answered From a Witches Mailbox!

In ending this book is worth having in your collection of almanacs, you can even order past issues to add to your collection. I was honored to read this book.

The Witches’ Almanac, Issue 38, Spring 2019 to Spring 2020: Animals: Friends and Familiars on Amazon

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About the Author:


Norma Clark I’m Wiccan, My style follows my spiritual path, and what comes to mind.. I live in a small rural town, Paris, Idaho. I share my life With my Wiccan husband, 2 hyper Children, and gang of critters. I love to create new designs by looking at nature, cultural ideas for my Jewelry and create unique Metaphysical items. COME Sit For A  Spell or Two , And See the Magick of Forevrgoddessboutique

Book Review – The Little Book of Saturn by Aliza Einhorn

January, 2019

Book Review

The Little Book of Saturn

Astrological Gifts, Challenges, and Returns

by Aliza Einhorn

Even those who don’t know a lot about astrology cringe when Saturn is mentioned. Often thought of as bringing bad luck, challenges, loss and constriction, it has been called the Greater Malefic. What Aliza Einhorn does for us in her wonderful book is to show us Saturn as an ally and a teacher, the cosmic alarm clock that tells you to “wake up! Get up…don’t be late.” Don’t miss this opportunity to find out what you need to do to become true to yourself! Saturn will point out where we have strayed from the cosmic blueprint in our natal charts and point us back toward our prenatal vows of who we are striving to become in this lifetime.

This book is a handy manual for those unfamiliar with astrology. In the first two chapters, Einhorn discusses astrology in general, the inner and outer planets and even introduces the ideas of generational planets and timing in the chart. She gives an overview of the houses and explains how the planets “dress” depending on their sign and house placement. So a Taurus Sun in the 12th house is quite different than a Taurus Sun in the 5th. As she says, “you are more than your sun sign.”

Einhorn then takes an in-depth look at Saturn, useful for astrology neophytes as well as those who are more experienced. She kicks off with the comment, “Saturn is your fear.” I had not thought of Saturn that way – but had blamed all my fear on my spooky 12th house Pluto! Where we freeze, where we are blocked, where we are afraid is described by our Saturn sign. As Einhorn says, if we get to know our fear inside and out, Saturn will push us to get through it, to get over it, but creating situations where we can confront it and put it behind us. Thank you, Saturn! Rather than being our worst enemy, Saturn can be our greatest friend if we accept that it will prompt us to keep evolving. And as she says, we can then dismantle that wall of fear brick by brick. Einhorn goes through several other Saturn facets: responsibility, showing up, work and career, mastery, obligation and duty, patience, our teachers, leadership, fathers, growing up. Her examples are well explained and excellent for the astrological lay person who is looking for deeper insight into how to understand a natal chart.

The next sections showcase Saturn in each house and sign with gifts, challenges, ambitions and advice for each. I got good insight into my Libran Saturn from Einhorn’s discussion and found much truth in an interpretation I had not considered before.

The book finishes with a section on the Saturn Return. Einhorn covers the first, second and third returns at ages 28, 56 and 84 (give or take) with real poignance. She shows us how we die to the self we have been, at the losses we have sustained, at choices we must make to move forward. There may be grief and morning thrown in. The Saturn Return is inescapable whether we are aware that the transit is happening – we will feel the pressure as we shift into adulthood, midlife and our elder years. We look forward and backward and assess where we are now and we move into the next phase of our lives – whether we want to or not! Einhorn describes this point as a rite of passage and a crossroads, and suggests working with an actual crossroads at these initiatory times. Her recommendation is to slow down, pause in the center, and then take a stand, make a decision, make a choice about which way to go.

This Little Book of Saturn is of big import and well worth having in your astrological library!

The Little Book of Saturn: Astrological Gifts, Challenges, and Returns on Amazon

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About the Author:

Susan Rossi is a Practitioner and Teacher of Shamanism. She is a long-time explorer of The Mysteries – the connections between mind, body, spirit and how to live in right relationship to all of the energies streaming through the cosmos. She works with clients as an astrologer, coach, ceremonialist and guide to the wisdom that each of us has the capacity to access. Her focus is on guiding clients to unblock and rediscover their inner wisdom. , exploration of the birth chart, ceremony, legacy writing, hypnotherapy, energetic healing practice and creation of sacred tools are integral pieces of her practice.

Susan trained in Soul Level Astrology with master astrologer Mark Borax. She delights in exploring with individuals the planetary pattern under which their soul choose to incarnate.

Flying to the Heart www.flyingtotheheart.com

Open Channel Astrology: openchannelastrology.com

Book Review – A Spiritual Look at the 12 Signs by Joseph Polansky

December, 2018

Book Review

A Spiritual Look at the 12 Signs

by Joseph Polansky

 

 

Having a large section on my bookshelf dedicated to Astrological studies and having decades of experience as an astrologer, I must admit that I had some preconceived notion of what I could expect in reading this book; also on a subject that I am very well versed.

By way of a little introduction for those whose primary experience with astrology has been in religiously purchasing those little scrolls of Sun Sign wisdom available at the retail counter here is a bit of information about the complexity and nature of this particular discipline. Astrology has both a mundane and esoteric approach. The former being what we traditionally come across by way of chart readings, daily predictions and guidelines and the basic and fundamental perspectives, and I would add psychological, attributes of the individual’s birth chart. The more mundane (not to be confused with astrological interpretation of geographic place) aspect of astrology is further sub-divided into a variety of interpretative styles, including Vedic/Sidereal astrology, Western/Tropical astrology, Babylonian Astrology and many more.

Esoteric Astrology perceives the zodiacal signs as attributes of archetypal spiritual energy; there is additionally the psycho-spiritual overlay applied. Each having a (sentient) nature that informs the spiritual bodies of the individual and by so doing, informs the spiritual progress of this and other lifetimes. Just as is the case with Western (traditional) astrology, each of the signs has a planet associated with its energy. However in esoteric astrology the assignations of those planets differs from the traditional, because what becomes the focus of this study is that of the spiritual (and sentient) nature of the planets as they act upon the more etheric nature of the signs. Either (Western or Esoteric) of these approaches requires quite a lot of study and understanding of the basic principles to make full use of their gifts.

A Spiritual Look at the 12 Signs starts off on the right foot, moving through each of the zodiacal signs and giving enough basic information on each that the dip into the more esoteric astrological approach is easily grasped. Additionally, throughout the book, Mr. Polansky has provided the reader with a copious and varietal amount of meditations and contemplative reflections that serve as another layer of experiencing the more spiritual, vs. astronomical nature of the signs.

The Table of Contents is thoughtfully organized to provide some basic information at the foreground and develop into a broader perspective inclusive of other ways of making use of astrological energies. Mr. Polansky folds in some additional uses of astrology, such as Medical astrology, aromatherapy using the construct of astrological energetics. Each of these sub-sections breaks out how that modality would present itself through each of the astrological signs, giving the reader an instant “grab on” and point of reference.

There is an interesting chapter, The Twelve Yogas, that weaves the philosophies of Yoga (not simply in its form of Hatha-or posture) into a meditative practice aligned with your astrological sign. In particular the overlay for this exploration is the alchemical element of the various signs and the particular form that will support that disposition. For example, those of Air signs are guided towards practices that incorporate mind (Jnana yoga) and breath (Pranayama yoga); Water signs align with the yogic focus of love and devotion (Bhakti); Fire with that of fire (Agni yoga) and action (Karmic yoga), and Earth signs benefit from postures and movement (Hatha yoga) and ritual work. I found this to be a nice touch in making connections and use of astrological principles beyond the traditional nature of prediction and identification.

This book is a smorgasbord of tastings and samplings for the student of astrology who wishes to stretch a little further. Theosophical, Eastern Philosophies, Western Hermetics, Ayurvedic practices, Metaphysics, Alchemy and Esotericism and more are all folded into the information of this book. Some reveal themselves only if you are aware of the disciplines from which they are derived, which is neither a comment of critique nor praise. This is often the case when pursuing any of the disciplines of esoteric knowledge.

All in all I believe A Spiritual Look at the 12 Signs to be a lovely foray into expanding your understanding of astrology and being able to access relevant and enough recognizable traits to engage the reader and inspire them to seek out more.

A Spiritual Look at the 12 Signs: An Introduction To Spiritual Astrology on Amazon

 

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About the Author:

Robin Fennelly is a Wiccan High Priestess, teacher, poet and author.

She is the author of (click on book titles for more information):

 

The Inner Chamber Volume One on Amazon

It’s Written in the Stars

Astrology

 

The Inner Chamber, Vol. Two

poetry of the Spheres (Volume 2) on Amazon

Qabalah

 

The Inner Chamber, Vol. Three

Awakening the Paths on Amazon

Qabalah

 

A Year With Gaia on Amazon

The Eternal Cord

 

Temple of the Sun and Moon on Amazon

Luminous Devotions

 

The Magickal Pen Volume One (Volume 1) on Amazon

A Collection of Esoteric Writings

 

The Elemental Year on Amazon

Aligning the Parts of SELF

 

The Enchanted Gate on Amazon

Musings on the Magick of the Natural World

 

Sleeping with the Goddess on Amazon

Nights of Devotion

 

A Weekly Reflection on Amazon

Musings for the Year

 

Her books are available on Amazon or on this website and her Blogs can be found atRobin Fennelly 

 

Follow Robin on Instagram & Facebook.

Book Review – Medicine Wheel Plain & Simple: An Introduction to Native American Astrology by Deborah Durbin

December, 2018

Book Review

Medicine Wheel Plain & Simple: An Introduction to Native American Astrology
by Deborah Durbin

 

I had a flashback to the 1980’s when I opened this book. I saw the system familiarized in Sun Bear and Wabun’s The Medicine Wheel: Earth Astrology, complete with correspondences to animal totems, plants, crystal and moon correspondences for each astrological sign. So, this book is “New Age;” don’t pick it up thinking that you will learn find a new (or rather, ancient) system of working with cosmic forces here. And you won’t gain any insight into the cultural astronomy or archeoastronomy of the indigenous people of the Americas – the mythic tales of the stars brought down to Earth and how those energies affect human affairs.

That said, you will have a fun tool for broad astrological divination by the equivalent of your sun sign to play with. Medicine Wheel Plain & Simple offers a different lens for examining personality types, strengths and weaknesses, than the zodiac wheel we are used to. Like Sun Bear and Wabun’s book before it, this book uses a Northern American perspective on a seasonal calendar: winter is cold, summer is hot. The calendar wheel is divided into seasonal quadrants with a “ruling” animal totem for each. The wheel is further divided into 12 signs, like the familiar astrological signs, but ruled by animal totems instead of constellations. So, if like me, you are born between April 20th and May 20th, I am a Beaver, member of the Turtle Clan, born under the Frogs Return moon in the Spring Season rule d by spirit-keeper Wabun – Eagle on the East of the Medicine Wheel. My sign is also associated with blue camas plant, the color blue and the mineral chrysocolla. There are many correspondences to investigate here! Interestingly, the description of a Beaver personality was reminiscent of my Taurus self: “slow, methodical, practical, reserved…easygoing and slow to anger, but once roused, they can have a fierce temper…” My compatibility with other signs is similar to my astrological compatibility – I am married to a Snake (Scorpio)!

Durbin has included a section on finding your personal animal totem. She discusses a shadow totem, one that terrifies you, that tests you and teaches you what you need to overcome. Interestingly, mine is Snake, the opposite of my Beaver totem, containing the qualities that Beaver most lacks. And being married to a Snake, I have learned a lot from our differences. She also includes a short section on working with predictive Medicine Wheel astrology by throwing pebbles or shells, noting where they land, and interpreting the energies and qualities of the quadrant and sign in that section of the wheel.

It’s unfortunate that the book purports to be “An Introduction to Native American Astrology.” There are so many beautiful star myths, tales and creation stories in the traditions of the indigenous peoples of the Americas. And the ancient Mayans had a complex astrological and seasonal calendar. And to imply that all Native American cultures used a homogenous system is stereotyping of the worst sort. Medicine Wheel: Earth Astrology, the book on which this one appears to be based, sourced itself in earth-based cycles rather than representing a specific “Native American” system. Medicine Wheel Plain and Simple is a New Age overlay of North American animal, plant and seasonal symbolism on the common horoscope wheel. But it is fun to play with! If you didn’t come across Sun Bear and Wabun’s book in the 1980’s, this one’s worth a look!

Medicine Wheel Plain & Simple: The Only Book You’ll Ever Need on Amazon

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About the Author:

Susan Rossi is a Practitioner and Teacher of Shamanism. She is a long-time explorer of The Mysteries – the connections between mind, body, spirit and how to live in right relationship to all of the energies streaming through the cosmos. She works with clients as an astrologer, coach, ceremonialist and guide to the wisdom that each of us has the capacity to access. Her focus is on guiding clients to unblock and rediscover their inner wisdom. , exploration of the birth chart, ceremony, legacy writing, hypnotherapy, energetic healing practice and creation of sacred tools are integral pieces of her practice.

Susan trained in Soul Level Astrology with master astrologer Mark Borax. She delights in exploring with individuals the planetary pattern under which their soul choose to incarnate.

Flying to the Heart www.flyingtotheheart.com

Open Channel Astrology: openchannelastrology.com

30-Days of Samhain Offered by Robin Fennelly

October, 2018

30-Days of Samhain Offered by Robin Fennelly

A Witch’s Sacred Journey

The final harvest calls, the Ancestors await and the veils between the worlds have thinned offering the gifts of healing, transformation and deeper communion with the cycles of nature.

Last year I decided to explore the mysteries of Samhain using a daily format of postings and suggestions to deepen your awareness of this sacred time of the year. I am sharing this again for this year’s celebrations and will be adding some other material as we move through the 30-Days of Samhain. Let the journey begin…

The countdown ends with Astrological Samhain, so Day One begins on October 9th and Day Thirty ends on November 7th. Enjoy…

Day One begins here… Welcome and Introduction

For Quick Links visit: 30-Days of Samhain-Index

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About the Author:

Robin Fennelly is a Wiccan High Priestess, teacher, poet and author.

She is the author of (click on book titles for more information):

 

The Inner Chamber Volume One

It’s Written in the Stars

Astrology

 

The Inner Chamber, Vol. Two

poetry of the Spheres (Volume 2)

Qabalah

 

The Inner Chamber, Vol. Three

Awakening the Paths

Qabalah

 

A Year With Gaia

The Eternal Cord

 

Temple of the Sun and Moon

Luminous Devotions

 

The Magickal Pen Volume One (Volume 1)

A Collection of Esoteric Writings

 

The Elemental Year

Aligning the Parts of SELF

 

The Enchanted Gate

Musings on the Magick of the Natural World

 

Sleeping with the Goddess

Nights of Devotion

 

A Weekly Reflection

Musings for the Year

 

Her books are available on Amazon or on this website and her Blogs can be found atRobin Fennelly 

 

Follow Robin on Instagram & Facebook.

MagickalArts

August, 2017

Creativity and Teaching

 

 

This month’s offering is short and sweet. Creativity and teaching are my passion, so I’ve spent much of my 61 years of life as a teacher in one way or another. Teaching my ballet, until we could afford formal classes. Teaching ballet to others. Teaching Sunday school. Teaching my five beautiful children. Teaching my coveners. Teaching in the broader community, and more.

 

All of these pursuits were fueled by creativity and the passion I’ve offered up to these pursuits has out pictured in multiple venues and formats. Technology has provided a wonderful resource.

 

This month I am providing access to a 3-wk. course I’ve just finished teaching, entitled:

Celestial Tides: Days of Light, Dark and Balance

 

The link to the course will take you to “Teachings on the Path”, my website that provides coursework, pathworkings, astrological meditations and more. Here’s some information about the course to get you started:

 

Great power is held in the magick of the Equinoxes and the Solstices. These are times of change and the balance of the Equinox offers the point of neutrality between the burgeoning Light and Dark of the Solstices. The Great Wheel of the Year uses these days of power as anchor and stimulus for the Sabbats of Devotion held between.

 

This 3-wk series will provide the lore of these celestial tides, the astrological points of note and reveal the gifts of cyclical nature that are held in the honoring of these auspicious days. The classes will be a synthesis of experience, theory and techniques for enhancing ritual and personal practice.

 

Click Here to access the course:

Celestial Tides

 

I hope you enjoy this little excursion from the usual written page. Next month, back to the usual.

Many August Blessings… Robin

MagickalArts

May, 2017

All Hail to Astrological Beltane and the Parting of the veils to New Life!

 

magickalartsmay

 

A little background……

In many traditions the date of celebration for Beltane is May 1st and that of its counterpart, Samhain is Oct. 31 or Nov. 1. Although these dates have accumulated much astral energy from repeated use, if you wish to follow the astronomical approach, which is where the origins of the cross-quarter days lay, those dates are premature.

Beltane falls mid-point between the Vernal Equinox and the Summer Solstice. Each of the cross-quarter Sabbats – Beltane, Lammas, Samhain and Imbolc fall within that half way point between an Equinox and a Solstice. And, for those ancient practitioners who strongly followed the correlate of Solar tides, this placement provided very specific energy in relationship to the line of the Sun’s outpouring onto Earth, its placement during these times between and what was called into action in celebration, ritual and devotion.

If you look a bit closer at the timing of the astrological correlates and know, even a bit, about the energetics of the zodiacal signs as they move through the Solar Year, there is a wellspring of underlying meaning that can be drawn from as you open to new levels of connection that deeply inform how you construct your personal ritual or celebration of these cross-quarter days.  One observation is that this timing allows for points of rest and integration from one-quarter event, such as the equilibrium of the Equinoxes or the waxing or waning of the Sun’s light at the Solstices, to the next.

Astrological Beltane

May 5.2017

Sun in Taurus

Waxing Gibbous in Virgo

 All Hail to the Maiden of Fire and the Youth of Earth!

On this day of celebration we honor the Goddess and God as pro-creators of what will come to fruition at the Summer Solstice. She holds the fertility of a womb that is ripe and ready for the implantation of His seed of potency that offers the promise of new life from that union. Her Fires are those of heated waters that catalyze and quicken. And, His Earth is that of a seed of potential for manifestation required as the expelling of a potent energetic force strives towards taking form.

Adding to this are the astrological energies of God as the Youth wearing the mantle of Taurus, the Bull. We often speak of the fecundity of the God at this point of the Great Wheel and the Solar energy that is inherent within the God’s being is amplified by that of an astrological sign of Earth that is stable, strong and able to protect and claim the progeny of his seed.  The Bull is virile in seed and the animal instincts for survival inform the encoding of that seed to take root. Another attribution to this astrological sign is that of stubbornness. I prefer to think of it as longevity and commitment. And, are these not qualities you would seek in a mate?

The Maiden on this year’s date wears the Lunar gown of astrological Earth, Virgo. As a sign of detail and analysis, this wise Maiden offers the gift of sorting through what is possible and what is a waste of precious energy. And, although this may feel very labored and not of the wild spirit that is inherent in this sabbat, it is indeed the ability to trust in your choices that is enabling a wildness that is ready to co-create within the Lover’s embrace. She is the Maiden of earth’s Divinely organized Will; holding within her womb a potential for birthing anything she can imagine.

Virgo’s energy is one of strengthening a foundation that works in accord with the natural ebb and flow of what its wishes to create. Given that this energy is held in a Moon tide that is waxing towards its full expression, that foundation will serve to provide the fertile womb of potential for what will “become”.  And, that becoming will emerge and take clearer form as the Moon Maiden languishes in the a waxing phase of newness as Sun and Moon, Youth and Maiden continue their consummate efforts, as both unite in the fertility and strength of Taurus.

This sacred union of Earth reflecting on itself (Youth) and (Maiden) could be likened to the container that provides the structure and just enough containment to allow a quickening of its combined union to take hold and burst into the life that emerges from this space.  The heat and light of the sun are required to quicken the seeds that lay beneath ground that is fertile and supportive as roots take hold and stem pushes through.

The Veils of Beltane and Samhain

We hear much talk of the “parting of the veils” that occurs during the season of Beltane and Samhain. These are times when the separation between the earthly realm and the other worlds is thinner and the inhabitants of each may more easily interweave ad interact with the other. I have always envisioned these two distinct, yet similar parting of the veils as one of ushering new life and one of re-connecting with those lives that have departed. In my imaging, the Maiden dons the veiling that entices and calls forth the desire of the Youth to mate and from that mating as the veil is lifted, the seeds and embryos of new life have begun their time of fertilization and the ultimate birthing of new form to come. I have always felt that these veils between the worlds were softer and gentler in both their opening and closing. Unlike those of Samhain that generally feel very dense (and crowded), almost an overload of sensation as those departed crowd in to make their presence known and share their messages.

At Samhain, this Veiling is one of the grieving Wife; having seen the demise of her Lover (Lammas’ Sacrificial God) and is heavier and laden with the energy and tears of sorrow. She ages from this sorrow; yet deep within lay the seeds of new life waiting to be brought forth at the Solstice. These veils hold the wisdom of those who have left behind the physical existence and loved ones and their sorrow has become the tomes from which the living will draw their lessons of hope in wait of the growing light to be held at the Solstice.

Another Type of Sacred Union

So, why do I keep going back and forth between Beltane and Samhain? We can consider both as being reflections of the other. We can expand the story of consummate union of the Maiden and Youth and use the dynamics of each as feeding the desire of the other towards creation. Beltane’s Fires of new life will become those of wisdom that pass through the veils of Samhain. And, those who exist behind the veils of Samhain have potential to be those called back into life at Beltane.  This is the truth of our own nature. We are born, we live, we die and during this lifetime we are continually creating from the inner union of the Sun and Moon, Male and Female and all that contribute towards the consummation of our intent.

May the blessings of this Beltane grace and inform all of your creative efforts. May those gifts of yourself that need uniting and a space of loving care be gifted by the passions of Beltane’s fires. And, may you always be mindful of the Great Wheel as a continuum; each flowing into the other and each reaching across to what will be at the half turn of that wheel.

Blessed Be!

Image Credit:  Emily Balivet 2011

Astro Report for August 2015

August, 2015

Venus still Retro in Leo– 29 degrees

Saturday, August 1, 201512:01 am EDT

Goes Direct on Saturday, September 5, 20156:17 pm EDT

The Planet of love and adoration is still going against the grain preparing to trek across the face of the Sun. Affections at this time will seem to be awry in family-oriented Leo. Not to worry, though. Venus is strong-willed and has the capacity to overcome this obstacle. She allows her love and affection to come and go as needed or wanted, sometimes to a fault.

 

 

Saturn still Retro in Scorpio – 28 degrees

Saturday, August 1, 201512:01 am EDT

Goes Direct on Sunday, August 2, 20154:55 am EDT

The Planet of caution takes a break from its conservative ways. When it goes retrograde, the Planet actually lightens up on the reins a bit. It allows people to explore further than they normally would. Sagittarius allows it to open its mouth and to say things out of control. It’s time to make sure the brain is engaged before the mouth blurts away. Saturn goes Direct again in August.

 

 

Uranus still Retro in Aries – 20 degrees

Saturday, August 1, 201512:01 am EDT

Goes Direct on Friday, December 25, 20154:12 pm EST

Uranus is that Planet that hates to be confined. It is known as the “break out” Planet for that reason. When retrograde, Uranus can be responsible, more traditional and relaxed. As Uranus goes retrograde in Aries, there is a feeling of enthusiasm and courage to take responsibility. It is not a time to worry about what others think about you. Do your own thing at your own pace and life will be grand.

 

 

Neptune still Retro in Pisces – 9 degrees

Saturday, August 1, 201512:01 pm EDT

Goes Direct on Thursday, Nov 19, 201512:39 am EST

The “Pink Fog Machine” normally keeps us from seeing the truth clearly, because Neptune can askew our vision. When retrograde, Neptune can see things more clearly, like the fog has been lifted, for a short time. It helps you to understand the higher concepts of beauty, love and spirituality.

 

 

Pluto still Retrograde in Capricorn – 13 degrees

Saturday, August 1, 201512:01 am EDT

Goes Direct on Friday, September 25, 20153:00 am EDT

Pluto resonates with mystery and transformation. While it is Retrograde, the energies become more stagnating, unchanging and powerless. When Pluto is Retrograde, mysteries and secrets are difficult to keep and sometimes are leaked to the world.

 

 

Wheel of Year info

Lughnasadh (Lammas/Loaf-mass)

Saturday, August 1, 20156:10 am EDT (sunrise)

 

Names: Lammas, Lughnasadh, Festival of Lugh, August Eve (July 31st), Loafmas, Festival of Bread, 1st Harvest, Bread Harvest, Festival of First Fruits, Gwyl Galan Awst (Welsh)

Date: Aug 1st (sometimes celebrated on the eve at sunset –July 31st)

Astro Correspondence: 15 degrees Leo
Color: tans, oranges, yellows and reds

Food: grains, cakes, breads, fresh fruits, mushrooms, lamb, berry pies, wine, ale, beer

Common Info: Story of Lugh, Handfasting/Handparting, 1st Harvest Fest (grains mostly), Story of John Barleycorn as the Corn King (corn is synonymous with grain),

 

Lughnasadh is the Sabbat that celebrates Lugh, the God of the Sun. The date is typically the 1st day of August although some folks begin to celebrate at sunset the day before, July 31st or when the Sun enters 15 degrees Leo, which is ruled by the Sun. It is the first harvest festival. Foods sacred are typically grains of all sorts, vegetables off the bush or fruits off the vine. Breads and barley meads are custom as well. This Sabbat is also known as Lammas or the Mass of the Loaf (Loafmas). Braids and Sheaths of grain are usually hung on walls to represent prosperity. John Barleycorn is sacrificed and buried in the fields to promote a healthy growth for the following growing season.

The Tailtu Games are warrior games that honored Lugh’s mother. They are reminiscent of the Olympic Games, but from another time and culture.

 

 

Saturn goes Direct in Scorpio – 28 degrees

Sunday, August 2, 20154:55 am EDT

Saturn’s energy can be so conservative, but when in Scorpio, the Planet can be more determined. This particular Sundaymay speak of many aspects that innuendos are made of – especially when Scorpio adds mystery to the mix. Saturn’s energy essentially will revert back into its normal shell of caution.

 

 

Mercury enters Virgo

Friday, August 7, 20152:02 pm EDT

Mercury finally comes home again in its Rulership Sign of Virgo. Communications should become rather comfortable. Open discussions promote practical conversations. When speaking, make sure you say exactly what you need to say – short and sweet. Offer simple answers that avoid clouding issues. Stay on topic.

 

 

Mars enters Leo

Saturday, August 8, 20155:55 pm EDT

Authority takes action. Be determined to offer definitive opinions when confronted by aggressive people. Don’t take “NO” for an answer when you need to hear “YES”. Be assertive in your own actions by being confident. Trust yourself to do the right thing – always. Avoid regret later by knowing that whatever you do, is for the right reason at the time.

 

 

Jupiter enters Virgo

Tuesday, August 11, 20155:01 am EDT

Generosity can be very precise. If abundance is offered, it is often implied that it should be used for something specific. To use it otherwise, may offend the gift giver.

 

 

New Moon in Leo – 21 degrees

Friday, August 14, 20159:53 am EDT

Emotions run high when the New Moon is in Leo. As a Sign, Leo tends to be rather loyal to family matters. So, when a New Moon happens in Leo, we see a variety of emotional aspects within the family. It’s a good time to spend time with the family and start something new that helps tie the bonds of family.

 

 

Venus conjuncts the Sun in Leo – 22 degrees

Saturday, August 15, 20152:07 pm EDT

As the Venus approaches the Sun, the energy of Venus becomes amplified. Love and affection could be quite amorous indeed. Exercise tact when necessary. Venus can become hedonistic, but her energy can be controlled.

 

 

Sun enters Virgo – Happy Birthday, Virgo!!

Sunday, August 23, 20155:25 am EDT

Logical thinking and sound judgments come easily for you when the Sun enters its ride thru Virgo. Unfortunately, the whim of putting off until tomorrow what you could do today is overwhelming. It will be easy to analyze situations and come up with multiple solutions. It’ll be a better time to make the right choice that best fits your interests. Stress and nervous tensions could be tentative. Remember to take time out for you to reduce stress and tension. Find a quiet place and try to meditate over the past summer and see where you need to go forward into the Fall.

 

 

Sun conjuncts Jupiter in Virgo – 3 degrees

Wednesday, August 26, 20154:48 pm EDT
As the Sun approaches Jupiter, the energy of Jupiter becomes amplified. Compound it with the energy of the Sun and egotism could escalate exponentially. There is a sense of self pride, but be aware that this could become over exaggerated to annoyance.

 

 

Mercury enters Libra

Thursday, August 27, 201510:32 am EDT

Communications are weighed heavily against all odds. When you speak, you try to find balance in your words that will neither negate nor accent a subject. It is all about finding the truth in the matter and analyzing it for an honorable result. Be sure to weigh your words heavily or you may find your proverbial foot in mouth too often.

 

 

Full Moon in Pisces – 6 degrees

Saturday, August 29, 20151:34 pm EDT

A Full Moon brings final fruitions and manifestations of positive energies that have been building since the New Moon. When the Moon is Full in Pisces, we find our emotions more sedate, calm and happy-go-lucky. This energy is quite welcome since the previous planetary energies have been chiding us up to this point. The Moon’s psychic energy is magnified by Pisces.

 

Native Lore

Native Americans named their Moons when they were Full. The season or time of year would help assign the name of the Full Moon. In August, the Natives of North America, specificallyNew England states, would call this Full Moon the Green Corn Moon, since the corn was ready to harvest. Or it was called the Grain Moon when the grain was ready for harvesting. Natives surrounding the Great Lakes would name this Full Moon the Sturgeon Moon, when sturgeons were mostly abundant. Occasionally, the Full Moon of August would be called the Full Red Moon, because of the amazing hue it would have while it rose above the horizon in the evening.

 

 

No Planets go Retrograde in August

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