This week in AstroYoga we celebrate Imbolc - the first cross-quarter day festival in the Celtic Wheel of the Year on 1st/2nd February ~ marking the halfway point between the Winter Solstice (Yule) and Spring Equinox (Ostara). This is a time for new beginnings and a time to give thanks to the Godesss of The Eternal Flame ~ Brigid ~ a pre-Christian Indo-european Goddess., representing the essence of an inner dawn, and the healing that comes from knowing that the best is yet to come. Imbolc coincides with the christian festival of candlemas, which is actually no coincidence as both have their roots in ancient festivals of light. It makes sense that historically our ancestors celebrated making it halfway through winter to Spring. Fun fact, each day after the winter solstice daylight extends by 6 minutes... so this festival is quite literally to remind us of the return of the Sun. Here in the UK, We can all do with being reminded of that these days, right?
This Imbolc we are blessed with a magical Stellium in Aquarius ~ a cluster of four major planets aligning in the Fixed air element, amplifying the "Great Shift" that started on the Winter Solstice on 21st December 2020. All of the planets are gathering to usher in the beginning of the Age of Aquarius, an era that promises to restore power to the people and awaken our collective to higher states of consciousness, so that we can learn to live more from our hearts. Last week we may already have been feeling carried away by our higher minds buzzing with activity as the Sun (our central, most powerful star) Jupiter, Saturn and Mercury were all conjunct (together) in Aquarius. Thankfully the Full Moon in Leo acted as a counterbalance to all of this frenetic mental energy and guided us all home to anchor in our radiant hearts. we may still be feeling the empowering effects of the expanded heart energy of the waning lunation this week, which will have helped us navigate Mercury taking the Aquarian party into the underworld as he went retrograde, on Saturday 30th January, shedding light on our shadows., mercury is the messenger of the gods, known as Hermes in the Greek pantheon and Loki in norse mythology, conjuring an element of the trickster. Mercury rules communication and when retrograde in aquarius his influence over the internet and social media could be disruptive. But this retrograde is softened by Venus joining the interstellar party in Aquarius on Monday 1st February., which feels like cosmic reverence of the divine femininE goddess energy of Imbolc and st brigid's day. VEnus is the planet of love and money, so we may feel her lifting our perspectives even higher. This may have the effect of clarifying our focus on reassessing what we value most and supporting the process of releasing what no longer serves our highest good, enabling us to create space to plant seeds for what we want to receive in the coming year. Take a moment in quiet reflection to reflect on the following questions ~ What are you being called to release? What seeds are you ready to plant? What new creative endeavours do you want support for at this time?
Aquarius Stellium ~
Four planets Aligning in Aquarius
On 2nd February the waning moon is in Libra, cardinal air sign ruled by Venus,, forming a day of unstoppable energy of perpetual movement, transformation, reforms, active beginnings, duty and responsibility, courage, sacrifice, and triumph of achievement. IT is a day that brings sharper intuition, potential for spiritual and creative renewal, and improvements in partnerships and relationships. It is an auspicious time for collective group activities (obviously online - which actually will flow well with all of this Aquarius energy). With mercury retrograde in aquarius you may also feel a call to Tune in and listen more closely for the wisdom of your heart. This is a powerful time for forgiveness and clearing resentments. and as Mercury takes us into the underworld it is also an optimal time to connect to your subconscious and uncover new ways to express yourself. Get your divination tools out if you read tarot or rune stones and write stream of consciousness in your grimoire/journal. Write down whatever is coming up for you now without editing or censoring it, even if it doesn't make any sense now, it may come back to the surface in December 2021 when Venus returns to Aquarius and goes retrograde.
Dedham dawn ~ photo by Lou Hart
Joyousness accompanies this fresh energy, energy blocked before now. LIGHT pierces the clouds and touches the waters just as something beautiful emerges from the depths: the soul is illuminated from within, becoming a magnificent rainbow bridge between Mother Earth and Father Sky. This is indeed a liminal time of year ~ you may feel as though you're living between two different states of being. You may feel a sense of slowly making your way up and emerging from the shadowy depths of winter hibernation, only to once more feel pulled back down again to take a closer look at what your soul is yearning for. This week we are being encouraged to swim up to the surface and thaw our pains with the light of the Sun and get ready to plant seeds for what we want to manifest along the path to the Spring Equinox. (ostara). since the Great shift into aquarius (the water bearer) at the winter solstice many of us have been reporting a sensation of porpoising ~ to rise and fall repeatedly, alternating between feelings of elation and deep-rooted collective grief for what we are all going through together. there is no question that we are living through deeply transitional times.
My Imbolc reading (pictured below) is a counsel against expecting too much, or expecting in the ordinary way, for the old way has come to an end. We simply cannot repeat the old and not suffer. It is time to call in our scattered energies and concentrate on our interior life and hone in on our requirements for growth. Most importantly we are being reminded neither to focus on outcomes nor to bind ourselves to the memories of past achievements. For in doing so, we rob ourselves of a true present, the only time in which transformation can be realised. We may feel overwhelmed and exhausted from meeting obstruction upon obstruction in our passage over the past year. Yet always we have a choice, we can choose to see this apparent never-ending negativity as misfortune, or we can recognise it as an obstacle course, a challenge specific to the initiation we are collectively undergoing. When we choose to see things this way, each setback, each loss or humiliation, becomes a test of character. When our inner being is shifting and reforming on such a deep level as it is now, patience, constancy and perseverance are called for.
we simply must do whatever we can to stay centred, find the humour in things, and keep our faith firm.
so our practice this week harnesses the waning Libra moon for some balancing practice, restoring our equilibrium amidst this intensifying vata (air) energy in the run up to the new moon in Aquarius on 11th February. this promises to be the most powerful new moon in 2021 for setting intentions with 6 celestial bodies ~ the Sun, Moon, Mercury, Jupiter, Saturn and Venus ~ all coming into alignment to form a magnificent stellium in Aquarius.
~ My imbolc reading. 2021 ~
In celebration of imbolc we will also practice a candle magick ritual together with a tarot and rune stone reading ~ ideally You’ll need: a white candle and something to light it with, a candlestick or holder so that you can light it safely, and ROSEMARY or LAVENDER essential oil (or any oil that calls you), a journal or note paper and pen, If you don't have a candle or any essential oils then you can still take part using visualisation and imagination.
Plenty of room to come and zoom with us LIVE each week for AstroYoga on Transformation Tuesdays 10:00am-11:30am GMT ~ or if you can’t make that time then you can still benefit from doing the practice by watching the recording. if you feel called to book a live space or recording, all paths lead from clicking the button below. Or if you have enjoyed reading this then enter your email below to subscribe to receive my weekly cosmic energy updates.
So much LOVE to you