Full Moon in Aquarius: Black Madonna- Queen of Heaven and Earth.

The Black Madonna of Chartres Cathedral.

The Black Madonna of Chartres Cathedral.

The full Moon on Friday 12th August at 02.36 GMT at 19 Aquarius 21’ is the final supermoon of the year…the moon whispers her secrets in our ear as she comes in close to the Earth.

Carried on the wings of Mary as She ascends onto Her Heavenly throne (The Assumption of Mary, 15th August) the message is one of peace.

Something has been accomplished in the realm of spirit even while here on the human realm we may still be catching up.

The sabian symbol for the lunar degree is PHASE 320: (AQUARIUS 20°): A LARGE WHITE DOVE BEARING A MESSAGE.

KEYNOTE: The answer of spiritual agencies to thorough, sustained, and victorious individual efforts.

The Divine is totally “present” in the heart of all true victories.

What the “message” is depends on the particular situation, but the white dove always signifies peace; at the very heart of this peace is the CERTIFICATION of individual worth and victory.

The Dove symbolism connects auspiciously to this lunar illumination and Assumption, as both Mary and Venus have associations with the Dove.

In the full Moon chart, asteroid Magdalena is at the apex of a Yod aspect pattern- Yod is the tenth letter of the Hebrew alphabet and is known as “The Finger of God”. There is a cosmically ordained fate at work.

Just as Mary the Virgin Mother is assumed into heaven an act which was officially recognised in 1950, Mary Magdalene once demonised as sinner and prostitute is rightfully acknowledge by the Catholic Church in 2016 by upgrading her memorial day to a feast day.

One of four Marian dogmas, The Assumption of the Virgin marks the journey of Mary, once her earthly life has finished and She is taken into heaven to be crowned “Queen of Heaven”.

The Assumption offers a living mythology and a symbolic revelation, it flows in and through us as a psychic reality regardless of the literality of the event which incites so much discussion in scholarly circles.

One way to approach the symbolism of the Assumption is:

The Virgin (whole unto herself) is lifted (Assumption) into the kingdom of Heaven (divine consciousness).

With the full Moon conjunct Saturn a degree of seriousnes is indicated; we are being guided to take responsibility for our habituated and unexamined behaviours, to break old limiting stories and look toward a self-sovereign state.

In a square with Uranus, the energy of change, liberation, and awakening is available even while there may be actual or perceived threats to our security- change is rarely smooth. However, the tension between Saturn and Uranus has been going throughout 2021 with the last exact hit on December 2021.

As we let go of old restrictive forms of security the possibility for a more authentic reality is possible.

The dark goddess offers guidance and support in walking the path to liberation which at times can be shattering; Dark Maid Lilith as priestess of the Dark Queen makes her presence felt next to Venus in a close conjunction on the full Moon and an exact conjunction on Assumption day.

Aspects of Lilith are also involved with the Magdalena Yod- Black Moon Lilith and Dark Moon Lilith (true) in a sextile with Kaali/Mars/Uranus, and both of these forming an inconjunction to Magdalena. The energy of Magadalena is realised through Lilith, and Kaali/Mars/Uranus.

Through developing inner vision to see the dark side of the Moon as it relates to an essential feminine, and with a harmonious and creative relationship with a powerful sacred masculine (Kaali/Mars/Uranus), the divine feminine may be realised and take her rightful place thus allowing for restoration.

We see this motif also in the Grail myth through the maidens of the Maidens of the Well who transgressed and degraded, are held captive by the shadow masculine. It is the sacred masculine that will redeem the maidens and restore the land.

The Black Madonna who is known as the Queen of Heaven and Earth, transcends duality as a generative (solar and lunar) feminine power who accords with the cycles of the Earth and the Cosmos guides us to come into harmony with nature within and without, which in reality is the same.

If Mother Mary is the Immaculate conception, Queen of Heaven, the Black Madonna is the fecund, fertile “Queen of Heaven and Earth” who is not separate from the darkness or light or from Earth or Heaven and has integrated the Sun & Moon. She is the bridge between distinctions of duality that have caused humanity to separate form their divine nature and in so doing have separated from the body of the living Mother and the divine nature within.

Introduced to Christianity through the Knights Templar, the Black Madonna shows that we cannot be reunited with Christ (the divine) without accepting that Christ is also within matter, in us and in the living Mother Earth. What has been cast out must also be included as God… I hear the beating wings of Lilith… and Lucifer.

The Lilith Venus conjunction over the period from the full Moon to Assumption points to the need to integrate the exiled feminine and the idealized feminine and to know a truer more essential version not just of the feminine but of humanity. It also points to a deeper awareness of the Earth as a divine sentient being.

As Jungian analyst Ean Begg writes, “The Black Virgin is a Christian phenomenon as well as a preservation of the ancient goddesses and compensates for the one-sided conscious attitudes of the age.”

Like the Hindu goddess Kali, the Black Madonna is the ever-loving Mother even while she destroys- she destroys illusions, untruths, and rampant egos hell bent on separation. Her destruction is divine in accordance with spiritual laws, not man-made laws that have become separated from these laws. She destroys in order to renew, and she asks us to look within and surrender what is not the truth of our being.

While Mars continues in a conjunction with the lunar north node, Uranus and asteroid Kaali, the male polarity is also being renewed.

A more authentic masculine and a more authentic feminine gives way to a sacred marriage in which the devastation we have witnessed between the sexes may finally lose sway. This will undoubtedly have a positive impact on the world and on the Earth- as within so without.

 In his book Mammon and the Black Goddess, Robert Graves says,

“The Black Goddess is so far hardly more than a word of hope whispered among the few who have served their apprenticeship to the White Goddess. She promises a new pacific bond between men and women, corresponding to final reality of love, in which the patriarchal marriage bond will fade away.”

Integrating Lilith, blending her with Venus, the idealised feminine is not easy for in that we face our shame, rage, and our own unacknowledged darkness, however it is the path of power. Once we have integrated and reckoned with the parts of ourselves that have acted unconsciously, they no longer control us, and we are freed from drinking from empty wells and from wastelands.

Mary Magdalene the woman who faced all of these things and still walked the path to wear her crown in heaven is testament to what is possible.

The Magdalene I feel is a living symbol of the Black Madonna, a beautiful integration of the human and divine- Queen of Heaven and Earth- an emanation of Sophia, the feminine face of God who merges with matter.

A Woman’s Way: Reintegrating the Lost feminine.

The Virgin and Child with Saint Anne and Saint John the Baptist by Leonardo da Vinci.

The Virgin and Child with Saint Anne and Saint John the Baptist by Leonardo da Vinci.

“One must stay close to feeling to know what one should do in this matter of having or not having children”.

~ Marie-Louise von Franz, A Woman’s Way.

The first time I realised that I was the last female in my matrilineal line I was in a room with a few other woman- dream lodge friends- who for the most part were in the same position. I was not the only one to have this realisation for the first time and the room fell silent for a time as each woman considered the emotional impact of that recognition.

That was in 2016, quite late in my life, although technically I could still have become a mother. I remember one of the first astrology readings I received in my early thirties when the astrologer told me that he did not rule out motherhood for me until around forty-seven. I was shocked, I could not imagine becoming a mother at forty-seven. I never became one at all.

Since that evening in Canterbury sitting with the other non- mothers reflecting of the meaning of that in our lives, I have thought a lot about why I did not have children. I have never felt sad or distressed about it; on a deep level I knew that it was not my role in this lifetime to be a mother. That is not to say there were not moments when I thought it would have been amazing to be a mother… and there were losses, but somehow my calling lay elsewhere.

In my astrology practice I work with women who are mothers and have deeply adored the experience; women who are mothers and not without some guilt have admitted they did not enjoy the experience; women who have regretted having children, and women who have regretted not having children. In these sessions we inevitably look at the mother-line to explore our own experience of being mothered; often the same patterns are repeated, or else there is a fracture down the line.

Women who feel they were unmothered sometimes endure a lot of soul questing on their journey to heal the emotional wounds of this abandonment, perceived or actual. Something else I have found is that it can be the case that women who do not continue the matrilineal line are in fact clearing the line, they are lineage bearers and lineage healers. In this case it is the end of the line for a particular cycle of trauma… though sometimes not without much personal cost.

Astrology has helped to me to connect with my own mother-line and has cultivated a deep sense of compassion in what has been a painful and traumatic relationship with my own mother… and her mother before her. Pholus and the centaurs in a chart can help to flesh out the story.

Getting to know my astrology has also imbued me with a sense of purpose as I realise that I am here for a reason other than mothering.Working with the asteroid goddesses provides psychological insight in grasping the journey of the soul as it relates to feminine patterns of consciousness and archetypes… there are many wonderful masculine archetypes/asteroids to help expand masculine consciousness and experience too.

The tradition planets reveal a huge amount of insight and information however working with the asteroids facilitate a reintegration of many of the feminine aspects and expressions that have been lost, repressed, curtailed, or otherwise marginalised and outright abandoned.

I see this time as a calling back of all the different expressions of the feminine. Women are wives, consorts, lovers, mothers, scholars, and CEO’s… and they are also medicine women, healers, holy women, sages, leaders, visionaries, warriors, tricksters, masters, sacred sexual priestesses, initiators, creatrixes, funerary priestesses, spirit doulas, and dream temple oracles to name a few.

Sometimes women who have taken on their ancestral karma and lineage clearing are just exhausted and need time to recover and regenerate. This may be especially so if the descent into the trauma of the line has resulted in illness caused by emotional or mental imbalances, or spiritual malaise.

There are many ways to birth and there are many ways to mother.

If you would like to explore this theme in your life, I am available for astrology session to explore how the feminine archetypes move in you and identify the ones that may be calling you toward a life that you have not yet seen.

Cancer Moon Conjunct Hades: Transforming the Moon Mother

Painting by Jeff Brown

On Thursday 30th December, the full moon at 8 ° Cancer makes a conjunction with Hades, Lord of the underworld, shining a lunar light on the banished parts of ourselves individually and collectively, now waiting to return in the wild flowing rivers between life and death. Cancer is a cardinal water sign ruled by the Moon and is connected with the mother; in western astrology it is linked to the 4th house, the place of roots, foundations, and early environment.

The current lunar cycle began with a total solar eclipse at 23 ° Sagittarius, on the moon’s south node, days before the winter solstice and the great conjunction of Jupiter and Saturn. Eclipses occurring on the south node are an opportunity to clear out old, entrenched patterns, psychic scar tissue, and ways of being that chain us to outmoded vibrational realities. The past is also the keeper of memories, a storehouse of information telling the story of our soul’s journey.

Functioning as a kind of filter for planetary frequencies to interact with humans on Earth, the moon is a catalyst for transformation. Astrologically the Moon reflects our inner feeling world, our most primal expressions and what we need to feel safe, secure, and attached to our earthy existence. How we are welcomed into the world and the sense of belonging and safety that bolsters us… or not, is seen in the zodiacal position, aspects, and house placement of our natal moon. In life the influence of the moon is expressed in our most intimate relationships, primal needs for comfort, food, relationship to our mothers, our nervous system, and also describes the conditions of our very early life- up to 2 years old.

At 8 ° of Cancer, tomorrow’s full moon makes a close conjunction with Hades at 9 ° Cancer. Hades is not an asteroid; he falls under the category Uranian planets and may or may not be a hypothetical point. Regardless, astrologers working in the Uranian, or Hamburg School system credit Hades with a lot of importance. While mythologically Hades and Pluto are the same, in astrology they are different describing different phases and processes of the underworld journey. Having recently been through a long series of Pluto transits and only now discovering Hades and the Uranian planets, I have a sense of how these archetypes play out, though that’s for another blog.

Trans-Neptunian and trans-Pluto planets are fascinating, and I expect more information about them will surface as humanity experiences a vibrational shift- a physical sighting could happen any day as human consciousness expands farther into the solar system. Intuitively I feel the farther we go into outer space, the deeper the reaches of inner space… As Above, So Below.

A lunar descent to Hades sounds scary… our most vulnerable self in the underworld with little hope of return… at least not without some powerful allies such as Hecate, goddess of magic. Hades, god of the underworld as well as the place conjures a sense of purgatorial suffering, unfinished business, and mysterious processes designed to purge and purify the human soul. Strict hierarchical structures and laws must be adhered to… a ferry man must be paid… the rules of the underworld must not be questioned. Pluto is essentially the great transformer.

The myths of Inanna and Persephone teaches us that while a journey to the underworld may be treacherous and traumatic, the riches to be had are great- the Greeks named Hades Plouton and the Romans pluralized it to Pluton/Pluto which means giver of wealth.

Hades is bordered by five rivers – the Styx, Lethe, Acheron, Phlegethon and Cocytus, which can also be perceived by the living, these rivers are passages between the living and the dead. The river Lethe is the river of forgetfulness named after the goddess of oblivion and forgetfulness, Lethe. On drinking the water from the river one completely forgets their past life and is prepared for reincarnation.

Invisible gods, amnesia, shadows and shades, things barely hinted at, phantoms, forbidden fruit… what does it all mean?  What happens when we are abducted from our seat of security, even while it may be a rickety dysfunctional seat built on frail foundations- and cast into the depths of the unconscious/hell? Do we still refuse to acknowledge that which will not rest until it is brought to light? In the oldest known versions of the Persephone- Demeter myth, before patriarchal overlays, the maiden Kore goes willingly to the underworld, there is no abduction and rape, and like her Sumerian counterpart, Inanna, she is aware that her descent is also her becoming.

The Orphic mysteries introduce the existence of another river, the Mnemosyne which allows full remembrance of one’s life. Followers of Orphism were buried with gold-leaved tablets providing instructions on how to travel through death and obtain omniscience. Consciousness through the death process is also part of Tibetan, Celtic, and Native American cosmology.

Events and experiences that happened to us when we were babies cannot be cognitively recalled though the effects of those experiences stay with us and shape us throughout our lives. If those experiences were traumatic or shocking, our nervous system is wired in ways that cause us to be overstimulated, fearful and reactionary- flight, fight, or freeze. Our base chakra, our root, is disrupted.

We can piece together the story of our early lives through what we are told from our parents and the people who were closest to us at that time but what if those people themselves were traumatised, suffered from amnesia, stress, or shock?  What of the parts of our ancestral story that have been dismembered and locked in the underworld? The origins of our lives and our family story are then hazy, hidden, or obscure even while we continue to be influenced by it- our moon. Studies in epigenetics show that we are affected by what happened to our great grandparents. The dysfunctions and traumas in our collective experience likewise influence us as a whole, as a society.

Our moon also describes the emotional state of our mother, and the emotional frequency surrounding her when she gave birth to us and during those first years of life. Sun square moon in a chart for example can sometimes point to an environment that was disturbed by difficult relations between the mother and father.

I feel this full moon is highlighting motherhood generally. As we exit the old paradigm and prepare ourselves for the new, a valid and important question on the table is, how do we view/ treat mothers and motherhood? The consequences of traumatised mothers and traumatic mothering has been documented through the work of Bowlby and other psychologist working in the field of trauma and attachment theory. One of the most prevailing subjects of our time is healing the effects of dysfunctional relationships; It is clear that things that happened to us in childhood and particularly in the first few years of life have an immense effect on us determining the adults we become and the relationships we have.

It is often said that mothers feel forced to carry the guilt card when it comes to child rearing especially when things go wrong, but what has less readily been addressed is the overall societal and cultural conditions of motherhood. Many people are realising the limitations and detrimental consequences of current birthing practice. Spiritual doulas, conscious midwives, body-birthing wisdom, and compassionate support for mothers- to- be and mothers is finally filtering through- but we’re not there yet. The relational environment into which many babies are born is often traumatic and disturbing to the field of the new-born. Economic hardship and financial dependency tether mothers to emotionally damaging situations.

This past year beginning with the Pluto/Saturn conjunction in Capricorn initiated a process of dissolving old structures that were clearly unable to contain the new and emerging energies. As the shadows of Hades, the suppressed material of the collective unconscious, surfaced it became apparent that many of our ways of being were not only destructive to the planet but also to our inner world. Split off, exiled and buried parts of ourselves- the legacy of generations suffering in social structures that deny the full spectrum of human needs and expression including emotionally would not be silenced. It also became clear that attitudes, behaviours, and beliefs of the dying model could no longer be upheld and encouraged without weighty consequence- inner and outer devastation.

In placing our trust, faith, and life force in systems that cut us off from the ground of our being…mother/Mother, either deliberately or not, we abandoned ourselves. Individually we may have abandoned ourselves in families that demanded or expected us to be other than we are so as to uphold the family image or story, or to endorse a false matrix to protect the members from facing family ghosts. In intimate relationship we may abandon ourselves for a lukewarm version of love that does not embrace or recognise our soul. Collectively the same thing happens when we betray ourselves and agree to a society based on denial of the self at a core level. These compromises come with a high a penalty. The wailing in the underworld is an outcry against the desolation.

Do we choose to drink from the river Lethe or the river Mnemosyne? In choosing the former we relegate our authentic self to the shadow land of Hades failing to seize the opportunity for transformation. Choosing the latter we agree to a journey into the shadow lands to retrieve the lost parts of ourselves and the collective, including compassionate, loving support for mothers and mothering…. the heart of our humanity. And in reinstating the individual mother we reinstate the Great Mother. As Within, So Without.

Beneath scientific expertise, political rhetoric, and scholarship, beyond the horizons of the Earth and into the space age with its promise of eternal and perfect life, our primal human needs call from the depths of inner space and follows the child back into the arms of the Mother.