Autumnal Equinox 2014

Beyond Ambivalence: New Moon in Libra and the Equinox

Astrologer observing the Equniox and a scene of the parting of Adonis and Venus; by Domenicus van Wijnen; circa 1680.

New Moon @ 1 Libra 08’
September 23, 2014
11:14 PM Pacific
September 24, 2014
2:14 AM Eastern

September’s New Moon follows the equinox transition, initiating autumn in the northern hemisphere and spring in the southern hemisphere. For those of us just above the equator, the onset of the autumnal season heralds the beginning of shorter days. Whichever end of the globe you reside, the Sun’s entrance into Libra is a balancing and integration point within the Sun’s annual cycle. The equinox is literally such—a balancing of day and night, where each are of equal length. Both hemispheres experience this same effect.

The symmetrical equinox occurs when the Sun enters Aries, balanced by two solstice points in between. There are various symbolic interpretations of each equinox transition, primarily influenced by cultural and geographical differences. Less sunlight is a blessing to some, while unsettling to others. Here in the Southern California desert, autumn is usually perceived as a welcome relief from the intense, dry heat, and our winters are fairly mild compared to more northern locales.

Psychologically speaking, the Sun’s descent mirrors a process of turning inwardly and intimately. This makes perfect sense, seeing that less sunlight and colder weather reduces an emphasis on outer activities. The upper signs of the tropical zodiac—Libra, Scorpio, Sagittarius, Capricorn, Aquarius, and Pisces—lend more emphasis to intimate relationships and ideological, political, communal and spiritual constructs.

There is not one universal interpretation of the equinox transition, as this will vary depending on where you live; but we can all agree that the sign of Libra deals with balance, at the very root of the archetype. Western astrology obtained its symbolism from ancient, northern dwellers and their agricultural activities. Virgo, the harvest, comes to an end at Libra. The bounty (or lack thereof) of the growing season must be sorted and prioritized to prepare for the darker, colder months ahead.

This is a time to take stock. For most of us living in modern society, obtaining most of our food from grocery stores or the labors of local farmers need not worry about rationing our food supply for the approaching winter season; though, we will find ourselves, perhaps instinctively, taking stock of our personal lives in some way. This New Moon occurs in the sign of Libra since it happens to coincide with the equinox transition. At first glance, not much seems to be happening with this lunation.

There are no striking Ptolemaic aspects from other planets to consider (aside from a rather wide conjunction with Venus in Virgo and a quincunx from Neptune in Pisces), but it would be a mistake to say that this is an irrelevant New Moon. For one thing, this month’s lunation hits the “Aries Point”, which is a potent position for any planet or object situated at or around (generally within a degree) zero degrees of all cardinal signs.

The Aries Point itself is actually located at zero degrees of Aries, but any planet occupying the very formative degrees of Cancer, Libra or Capricorn are by effect in aspect to this point. In mundane astrology, there is enough evidence to know that any event touching the Aries Point has truly global ramifications; its symbolism often jumps dramatically onto the world stage, in some shape or form.

Just reflect back to the spring of 2011 when Uranus hit the Aries point itself. An earthquake and tsunami led to the world’s worst nuclear disaster at Fukushima Daiichi in Japan, the consequences of which the world will be dealing with for hundreds and thousands of years in the future (I am not predicting anything of this magnitude, as I don’t make predictions here; I’m just pointing out the significance and potential of this zodiac hot spot).

Without getting too much into the political events currently on the table (ongoing war in the Middle East--business as usual), I will just say that this lunation is a symbolic and rather significant marking point in the current political narrative. If we stretch our orbs quite a bit, or if we approach things from a more classical astrological perspective, Pluto (which moved direct roughly two hours before the equinox) makes a square to this New Moon from Capricorn—adding heavy negotiations and the dealing of karmic consequences.

At the heart, this lunation could symbolize some deep transformation and or death of certain ties we’ve established in the past, but with every death/transformation comes something new and different. With Libra, we are making new connections, sorting out past relationships and re-establishing equilibrium in our personal and intimate lives. There may be a need to commit ourselves more fully to something, a need to move on to better things, or an ambivalence that requires us to wait things out before making any drastic decisions.

That Libra deals with relationships is true, but it misses the very heart of this sign, for many signs also emphasize relationships, just in different ways. Libra symbolizes those bonds where we must be conscious of an equal playing field; open communication, honesty, and objective awareness are needed for things to work harmoniously or productively.

The key to Libra is commitment—commitment to ourselves, to others and to certain goals or objectives. There’s not much fence sitting with Libra; this sign requires decisive action (though Libra’s are known be indecisive in their more shadowy expression). There can be a lot of conflict and complexity in this process. This point of integration is a meeting place of personal and shared objectives and the awareness that what one side does deeply effects the other.

An understanding of chemistry makes clear the Libran process of balance. At the microscopic level, the very particles that construct our reality are in a process of constant, split second negotiations we cannot fully fathom, less so when looked at through a quantum lens. So, sit with that and see how it comes up in your life over the next several weeks, as the Sun chugs along in Libra.

What needs harmonizing and balance? What balancing act are you in the midst of? What seemingly disparate pieces need to be brought together for clarity, sanity and peace of mind? If we are to feel confident of our ability to survive the darker, colder months ahead (symbolically and literally speaking), we need to make sure we have what we need, that loose ends are effectively dealt with—which will be critical as we're in the midst of Mercury’s retrograde shadow period.

Mercury will turn retrograde Oct. 4 through 25. So, whatever you’ve been on the fence about, putting off or procrastinating needs to be dealt with now, or it should probably wait until the end of October to fully address. This primarily involves the signing of contracts, important paperwork filings, major purchases/financial transactions or anything to do with beginning long-range or large-scale projects. 

As I mentioned above, Neptune does in fact quincunx this New Moon. That doesn’t lend well to making critical decisions at this point, or actually committing ourselves with full conscious awareness. Neptune here may not so much cloud our judgment (though that is a possibility), but it seems that our intuition or certain psychic impressions are telling us one thing and our logical sensibilities another. That is, no doubt, frustrating to deal with. To resolve it and move forward, we must simply acknowledge that while we need to have clear intentions to proceed with our lives, we need to remain open to the reality that often, life, the unfolding, has plans of its own.

I always get annoyed when someone asks me questions like, “Where do you see yourself in such and such amount of time?” Yea, I have an idea, but I’m also wise to the reality that at the root of it, I have no clue, because life often just does its thing. That doesn’t mean that we shouldn’t set goals, or commit ourselves to something, but that we’re open to the possibility that everything could change at any moment.

If you’re feeling that way, just take note. Do what you have to do, but know that as Mercury stations retrograde we may have a change of heart and mind about certain things we’re dealing with right now. Mercury’s retrograde cycle is a natural time to step back and reassess our journey—in Libra, we’re likely to reconsider certain commitments and relationship dynamics.

Jupiter makes a trine to Uranus on Sept. 25—bringing some heat back into the picture. This is a potentially stimulating transit, creatively speaking. It also invites us to take the lead in an unconventional leadership capacity. Coinciding with the onset of Mercury’s retrograde cycle, Jupiter and Uranus invite us to creatively experiment and embrace more unconventional ideas or tactics.

This new lunar cycle culminates in a dynamic and powerful Full Moon/Lunar Eclipse conjunct Uranus on Oct. 8. That means that we’re also making our transition into Eclipse season as every Lunar Eclipse is either preceded or followed by a Solar Eclipse. This emphasizes the fact that very deep, profound changes within ourselves are forthcoming—changes that often have the power to catalyze us into new directions or territories, if so choose to release our attachments to past patterns.

Do what you can to bring about a harmonization of elements in your current process. Take care of some important matters before the month is over. Settle in and get ready to see things from a renewed perspective in the coming weeks. Above all, open your mind to alternate perceptions, especially provided by those you interact with most personally or intimately. As the season comes to its inevitable transition, a new phase of growth and development is upon us—asking us to possibly change gears and consider directions we weren’t likely anticipating. Such is the natural flow of life. We can either flow with it or against it. I highly recommend the former.