Written by Pam Younghans
Our New Moon in Leo on Monday evening (8:09pm Pacific Daylight Time) sparks new creative ideas and unveils new opportunities for joy. It also fuels ostentatious displays and ignites emotional dramas, all with the intention of attracting attention and establishing who's in charge.
The gifts of Leo the Lion are many; equal are the downfalls, as with any sign of the zodiac. The Lion is the king of the jungle and, when at his best, reveals his power through a level of assuredness and confidence that is unmatched. This king rules with kind of creative compassion that is worthy of the honor bestowed upon him by his subjects.
On the other side of the coin, we have the pretender king who maintains control by instilling fear. This king's tools are a loud roar and sudden attacks, and his primary desire is not as much to take care of those under his care, but instead to keep them unempowered, so that he might sit comfortably on the throne and receive the benefits of that heightened position.
Another archetype associated with Leo is The Child. I always think of the story of The Little Prince by Antoine de Saint-Exupéry with respect to this archetype. That diminutive prince had all the positive characteristics of an innocent, loving, creative child, whose main purpose in life was to be in harmony with himself and to spread joy in the world. This is the healthy expression of Leo's creative side -- the child-like enjoyment of living.
Again, on the other hand, we have the less-evolved expression of Leo the child, which manifests through child-ish tantrums -- displays that are more designed to garner attention than they are a means of creative self-expression.
Each of us has Leo represented somewhere in our astrological charts, and many of us also have planets in Leo. This gives us each person a choice point in how we handle strong Leo energies, as occurs this week with the New Moon. We can be the benevolent Lion or the pretender king, the joyful, playful child or the overly dramatic enfant terrible.
Monday's New Moon is a "SuperMoon," meaning that the moon is at perigee (at its nearest proximity to the Earth) at the time of the lunation. There are just five SuperMoons in 2010, and this week's lunation is the first of three New Moons in a row that are also SuperMoons (the other two occurring on September 8 and October 7).
When the Moon is at closer proximity to the Earth, her magnetic pull is stronger than usual. We're well aware of the Moon's effect on tides, and most of us are also aware of her effect on our emotions. By paying attention to the magnified tugs on our emotional and physical selves at the time of this New Moon, we can discover something new about who we truly are, and what will help us be more authentic, thereby bringing greater joy into our lives.
The Sabian symbol for the 18th degree of Leo, the position of the New Moon, reads:
"A chemist conducts an experiment for his students: In inquiring into the hidden process of nature, the human mind experiences the thrill of discovery."
We are each chemists in this lifetime, bringing together different elements in hopes of creative fulfillment and joy. This symbolic image reminds us of the importance of remaining open to possibilities, and to allow ourselves the alchemical excitement of childlike wonder and enthusiasm.
Pluto squares Venus less than an hour after the New Moon, completing Venus' week-long interaction with the energies of the Cardinal T-square. This aspect requires us to change something about our old way of relating, to allow ourselves, our relationships and our values to be transformed.
Under Pluto's influence, old habits come to the surface and grasp for our attention, and it can be difficult not to fall into old traps. But Pluto's efforts to remake us are not to be denied. Through revisiting old patterns, we remember exactly how it felt when we tried to manipulate others, or felt them trying to control us.
And Venus in Libra emerges from her confrontation with Pluto stronger for the experience. She realizes more fully the price of not being authentic, of how she has undermined her happiness by caring more for the appearance of harmony than for the actuality of equal relationship.
The asteroid Vesta comes into prominence this week, stepping into Libra and taking up the banner of the Cardinal T-square. Vesta is "the keeper of the flame," and in mythology was given the most sacred of all tasks, to guard the fire in the temple hearth.
Astrologically, Vesta represents our ability to dedicate ourselves to a cause or a task, wholeheartedly and with conscious intention. Standing in the energies of Libra, alongside Saturn and Venus, Vesta reminds us of our commitment to harmony and fairness, and the importance of working side-by-side with others to accomplish our goals.
But there are also challenges to be met in this remembrance. Next weekend, Vesta opposes Jupiter and squares Pluto, indicating possible conflicts between our commitment to others and our need to be true to ourselves. We may also have opportunities to fall into unhealthy strategies as a way of getting what we want.
The resolution? A recommitment to the process of Change, and a willingness to dedicate ourselves, always, to the sacred task of living as spiritual beings on this planet.
NorthPoint Astrology Blog: I'll be posting additional perspectives during the coming week at http://northpointastrology.blogspot.com/ -- please visit and add your comments!
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