Welcoming the Year of the Wood Horse

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Wu Xing and the five phases describe the interrelationships of the cosmic cycles as well as the interrelationship of the organ systems in the human body.  Wu Xing, or the five-phase system, describes seasonal cycles of interaction between Yin and Yang, the dualistic components of Universal Qi. Originally, the term Yin referred to the shady side of the hill, and Yang to the sunlit portion—so it’s clear to see that Yin and Yang were understood pragmatically, in terms of observation. We can say the same about the developments of astronomy—born of observation, tracking, and measurement.

Chinese astrology the Wooden Horse

In both astrological traditions, Western and Chinese astrology, there’s attention to how the movements “in the celestial sphere” affect our daily lives. Farmers and avid growers of the plant and vegetable kingdom have often utilized the knowledge of the cycles of the moon and the seasons (of the Sun) in order to determine the best and most productive time to plant. It may be obvious to mention that both traditions come from astronomy originally, but it was the Western world that officially divided from astrology during the 17th century, during the “Age of Reason.” (Perhaps, I should mention here that one of my favorite idioms is “don’t throw out the baby with the bathwater.”)
Nevertheless, there are obvious differences in the Eastern and Western traditions of astrology. In fact, each can be understood best in their own context, as they evolved in different geographic regions. That said, there IS a correspondence between the Chinese 12-animal astrological system, and the approximate movements of Jupiter through the Western Zodiacal signs. Jupiter changes approximately one Western zodiacal sign per year.  It should be noted that though this relationship is not exact—Jupiter’s movements and the Chinese zodiacal movements—it certainly is open to further inquiry.

The phase of Wood

Wood/Spring: a period of growth, which generates abundant wood and vitality.  In Traditional Chinese medicine, the generative interaction of wood is that it feeds fire. This relates to the liver and the gall bladder, areas were energy in the form of anger can stagnate or go rancid. Wood supporting Fire has capacity to generate in the tongue and blood vessels (we can see how this may correspond to outbursts of anger).  Nevertheless, the interest for the fire element is Joy—and we can learn from laughing and alleviating in this way.

Horse

I particularly enjoy reflecting on the poem below, and respectfully thank the author, Beth Johnston, for all the following information:

The horse is the seventh sign of the lunar calendar.
Cheerful, popular and quick-witted, although can be hot-tempered and headstrong at times


I am the Kaleidoscope of the mind. I impart light, color and perpetual motion. I think, I see, I am moved by electric fluidity. Constant only in my inconstancy, I am unshackled by mundane holds, unchecked by sturdy, binding goals. I run unimpeded through virgin paths. My spirit unconquered, my soul forever free.

I wanted to share this video with you because the music is really invigorating, just like the horse 🙂

 

 

Lunar New Year, Spring Festival, Gua Nian, Chinese New Year!

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In China, the celebrations (and sales) have already begun. Wheeee! I can imagine the lanterns and abundant red decorations, the fireworks, and burning paper money! This money is also referred to as joss paper, and it is burned along with incense in many Chinese rituals. Joss paper is used as an intermediary between worlds, transferring the tangible into the ethereal and spiritual world. Rituals such as these help us to maintain family continuity, and preserve connections with our ancestors.

In Chinese mythology, a mythical, horned beast named Nian is said to rise from the sea floor (or the mountains) and eat children and livestock on the first day of the year. In order to distract Nian’s toothy scariness *away* from devouring our beloveds, the Chinese people would stock plenty of food at their front doors, as if to say, “Eat this, Nian! Not my friend!”  Also, loud sounds like firecrackers and the color red are said to scare away Nian. 

Nian, as a mythological beast, has represented different things throughout the years, mostly serving as a reminder of calamity and destruction; and therefore, the need to take action against it. Nian has also represented poverty in the 80s and 90s. Not surprisingly, these are years where China made a lot of progress economically.
 
Yesterday I read an interesting personal story about rituals and heritage in the context of a Taiwanese American family, by Emily Chen.

“We may already be a few weeks into January, but I’ve just warmed up to the new year — right in time to welcome Chinese New Year at the end of the month. In recent years, I started treating Chinese New Year as a second chance to start the year fresh. As if January 1 is the soft launch and the arrival of the next Chinese zodiac sign marks the true beginning to another annual cycle. As an added bonus, Chinese New Year extends the holiday season for me by an extra month or so… continue

As a person who likes to keep in tune with the lunar movements (as well as the solar movements), I can certainly relate to her written passage above. Again, “[It’s] as if January 1 is the soft launch and the arrival of the next Chinese zodiac sign marks the true beginning to another annual cycle.” So…, if you’re also into celebrating the Lunar New Year, please enjoy the Lion Dance (below) and start your New Year’s ‘True Launch’ now!!!!

What a remarkable dance it is! More to come!

 

Aquarius New Moon: During a silent hour…

Hello my readers, friends, visitors, and spiritual buddies,

                 Breathe,

                           Breathe,

We’ve got some interesting times up ahead in the next couple of weeks (and you thought they were already interesting)!  On January 30st, we’ve got the new moon in Aquarius.  On January 31st, we’ve got the celebration of the Chinese New Year. It’ll be the year of the wooden Horse. On February 2, we’ve got the festival welcoming the beginning of spring, called Imbolc (pronounced “IM-bulk” or “EM-bowlk”) or Candlemas. Finally on February 6, Mercury will go retrograde for 3 weeks–we are currently in it’s retrograde shadow.

New Moon in Aquarius

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First, let’s look at the new moon. The Sabian symbol for this new moon is, “During a silent hour, a man receives a new inspiration which may change his life.”

There’s a reflective quality to this Sabian symbol that literally directs us to sit down for meditation. The new moon is the time for planting the seeds of your intention. Pause, and sit in silence, as you are called into meditation. Take this Sabian symbol, coupled with the observant style of Aquarius, and you’ve got yourself a date with perfect quietude.             

(surrendering to sweet silence…………and hope you do too!)

If you happen to receive any messages… and you would like to share them, please do.

Moon trine Pluto in the Earth Signs: Dig? How deep?

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It was in the process of attempting to write a new blog post for Fiesta Estrella a couple of days ago, when I realized I need to write a book. So, I am. I’ve recently begun this awesome task, and I’m letting it lead me. It requires some level of unearthing the tap root. This is quite like current planetary configuration’s theme.

Moon trine Pluto in the Earth signs: finding the root of the situation

A few keywords about what the moon represents:

nurturing, the past, the emotional body, unconscious, feminine

A few keywords about what Pluto represents:

Occult, resurrection, unearthing depth, psychology, transformation

With the moon in Virgo we have a chance to analyze the depths of things, gain deeper awareness about our physical health, and perhaps even tap into the root of our psyche with regard to our relationships (Pluto conjunct Venus). Venus is also in Capricorn, and in trine with the moon, so I consider them buddies.  Other possibilities could be a time where we can gain deep insight (Pluto) into our finances and our spending habits.  Virgo also is a supportive sign (it likes to help others, and be of service) so maybe this also a time where we are more aware of our contribution, our need to make a contribution, or our need to impact the bottom-line (Pluto) in Capricorn (business) and in Virgo (human concerns). What is the health of our finances, and could this be related to the depth of our relationships? Pluto asks us to go deeper into things—and rarely will leave any stone unturned.

You never know what may turnip?

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Sometimes this energy can be frightening to people because the Plutonian urge can be experienced as compulsive or intense (Scorpios should be very familiar with this energy, as Pluto is the modern ruler of Scorpio).  Also with Pluto is a marked capacity for resilience, not entirely unlike Capricorn, the sign Pluto has been currently residing.  The difference in Scorpio/Pluto (from Capricorn) is the depth. Capricorn relates to systems of all kinds, crystallized methods and processes. In the face of Plutonian transformation, this can leave one feeling on the verge of death—usually in terms of ‘psychological deaths.’ As one door closes and another door opens, the saying goes. This is the understanding that change and transformation is just another type of birth, or doorway to walk through. Transformation is also a re-organization of essential energies.

Photocredits:

For the shovel, is from a wonderful blog post (http://www.gizmodo.com.au/2013/04/the-eight-types-of-shovels-everyone-should-know/) by Andrew Tarantola about “The 8 types of shovels everyone should know.”

For the turnip goes to Niki Jabbour, a blogger who writes about her adventures as a professional garden writer, radio show host and obsessive veggie gardener. She’s working on her second book, check her out at: http://yearroundveggiegardener.blogspot.com/2011/02/you-say-rutabaga-i-say-turnip.html There you will find more images of turnips. The images, she says, “…are some of my beloved Hakurei turnips that mature in just 38 days!”

‘Mothering,’ January 15, 2014, Full Moon in Cancer

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Zodical Cancer as an Archetype

The archetype of Cancer is a nurturing energy that seeks to care for and protect the young ones by focusing on the “roots” of the living, and housing the growing spirit (seed) in a protective structure like a shell, or deep within the earth. Cancer is one of the 3 water elements in Western astrology. The other two are Scorpio and Pisces.

 

Water Element in Chinese Philosophy/Medicine 

In traditional Chinese medicine, winter is the season for strengthening the water element. “The Kidney Qi rules in the winter, a time when living things are contracted with cold. Like a seed deep in the cold ground, Qi is dormant, waiting for the time to sprout.”  

Water energy is a generative force in the lower belly or lower Dantian, the sea of Qi, also known as the “the golden stove.” About 3 finger widths below the belly button, this center of balance and gravity is one of the focal points for meditation and Qi Gong practice. It is said that our Prenatal (Yuang Jing) is housed in our lower Dantian, interacting with the Kidney energies and forming Kidney Jing.

“When the Kidney Qi is strong, a person is fearless, determined, and can endure many hardships in pursuit of their goals. Persevering by will power is characteristic of those with strong Kidney Qi. Longevity is also considered to be associated with healthy Kidney Qi, signified by large, elongated ear lobes, like those of the Buddha.”

“In Traditional Chinese Medicine, the Kidney energy is also said to be responsible for healthy teeth, bones, and bone marrow. Because the ancient Chinese medical scholars considered the brain and spinal cord to be extensions of the bone marrow, the Kidney is thought to rule over the skeletal structure and function and, consequently, over intelligence, reason, perception, and memory.”

 

Western Astrological Correspondences

In Western Astrology, the sign of Cancer is associated with memory and the retention of water. It rules areas such as the mammary glands and the abdomen. Its complementary sign in Capricorn is associated with the structural components of life, such as bones and teeth.

During a full moon, the Sun is in the opposite sign from the Moon. Therefore, we can learn something from looking at the interaction of both archetypal signs, the signs for both the Sun and the Moon. In this case, it is the complementary (and opposite) signs of Cancer and Capricorn.  Also, looking at the Chinese traditional understanding of the water element sheds light on the existing focal point for strengthening our bodies and spirits during the season of winter.

 

Reference:

http://www.acupuncture-online.com/

http://fiveelementhealing.net/winter-the-season-of-water-element/

http://www.ichikung.com/html/dantians.php

THE SECRET LIFE OF KAREN CHRAPPA

…..loved this so much I had to re-blog…..<3….for the travelers and those experiencing New Earth.

a structure for spirit

It seems Walter Mitty and Bees are not the only ones with secret lives; the kind where we step out of consenual reality into a dimension woven from idealistic visions and waking dreams.

As we crossed the threshold to a new year, a brief and magical glimpse from the moutaintop parted the veils between what has come before and what is to be.

It started with a computer glitch.

I was looking to book a flight from LGA to SAV on New Year’s Eve. I stared at my computer screen in stark disbelief.

$30.00?

Did I get that right?

Apparently a computer malfunction created crazy airline deals. I inadvertently stumbled into the window of opportunity.

As much as the deal saved me good money I was hauling some pretty heavy baggage so I knew I would make up the difference in pretty heavy fees.

I arrived curbside to check my…

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