New Moon in Aries: The action within the movement


A couple of blogs ago I wrote about Mars and initiation. I’m not sure if it will become a series or not, but it’s definitely a theme in action. Now, as I look at the New Moon, it’s filled to the brim with Aries/Mars energy!


First, the New Moon is sandwiched between the Sun (definition of New Moon in astrology is Sun/Moon conjunction) and Uranus in the Mars-ruled sign of Aries. Second, the New Moon opposes retrograde Mars in Libra (Aries counterpart).


Mars in Libra conjuncts the N.Node of the Moon, and is opposite the New Moon. The node is the point where the moon’s path crosses the ecliptic, and it indicates the evolutionary direction—in evolutionary astrology. The North node is the future trajectory, while the South Node describes the evolutionary past of the soul. With the Mars in Libra conjunction to the transiting N. Node, we are sent right back to Venus (Libra-ruled) to connect the dots.


Venus and Mars are the dance partners in this show of planetary design. The themes of right/left, male/female, passive/active, etc. The main theme is initiation. Ask yourself how you have started relationships (Venus) in the past (S. Node in Aries). Transiting Venus in Aquarius will help you to be more objective about what you see when you look. It will help you to keep a reasonable distance to examine your relationships with a “cool” mind.


Venus and Mars are in sextile to each other during this New Moon, showing that masculine and feminine energies unite in relative balance, with a tad bit of work.


Nevertheless, the new moon brings us right into the larger pattern of Pluto square Uranus, since Uranus is conjunct the New Moon, while squaring Pluto and Jupiter. You know, the biggie that everyone is talking about? Seven exact aspects spanning 2012-2015, transforming everything… What’s Jupiter’s role in this?


The Jupiter and Pluto opposition is asking us, “what’s possible?” and likewise, “what is impossible?” This is your chance to expand (Jupiter) your home (Cancer). Also, you can transform (Pluto) the structure (Capricorn) of your work, your business.


The presence of Saturn (in mutual reception with Pluto) still calls for restraint, and boundaries. Why? Because, we are still working out the negotiations (Libra), and involved in deep processes of self-(re)discovery (Uranus), for something that will be fairly long-lasting (Saturn).


When we have such intense aspects within the Aries/Libra archetypes, we want balance but not the stagnation that comes with perfect balance. I’m sure those very Virgo-identified are wondering why perfection has been “taken off the table” for such a long time. In other words, why are we working so hard?!  Well, Capricorn wants results, measurable and substantiated results – and Pluto carries the wreaking ball of transformation, er… the hidden key.


When Pluto is in an Earth sign, all the Earth signs are affected, since they form a natural trine.  Re-forming the Earth is happening: that means how we serve others, our work (Virgo), and our values (Taurus) are moving with Pluto in Capricorn. They are like the arms that have to move with the body. Remember, we need a body to drive the chariot – to light the kingdom of heaven on Earth.


Happy New Moon!

Ka Malana ©2014


Image credit: original is unknown. retrieved from

Vernal Equinox, Part II: A Profound Start


Title Unknown. Painted by Andrew Salgado

As the Sun enters Aries 0.00, it trines retrograde Saturn in Scorpio. Some conventional astrology will have us working on our experience with father and fatherhood. Other Saturn-style manifestations could be teachers, people in positions of authority with the ability to guide or restrict our movements.

All this Vernal Equinox energy of initiation in Aries-ruled Mars can find anchoring in the Saturn/Moon conjunction in Scorpio. Saturn stabilizes (stills), Moon emotes (moves), and the trine to the fiery Martian Sun pierces the veil of shallowness. In Scorpio, we dive deeply into experiences, and dwell for as long as necessary to bring about transformation (Scorpio).

Do we dedicate (Saturn) ourselves to such a task? Do we have the support and leadership?

The joining of Fire and Water can heat up the water, or make it boil over. The choice is always yours in this version of astrology. I think that’s a good platform for an Aries beginning. Grow in the direction you want, and find the supports/structure (Saturn) to help you, expect your experiences to be deep (Scorpio) and long lasting (Saturn).

This new energy is exciting, and… we can sense how it’s deeper than we may have originally saw or thought.

~Ka Malana ©2014


Credit: Painting by Andrew Salgado

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Vernal Equinox – PDT , March 20, Thursday, 9:59 AM – Part I


Happy Spring & New Growth!  (Part I is Analytical) (Part II is Energy-Specific)

Before we tap into the energy signature for the vernal equinox and explore its timbre (Part II), let’s first review precession of the equinoxes (Part I). The timing of the vernal equinox is when our Sun crosses the celestial equator and travels north. See the image below where the point of the vernal equinox is labeled.

ImageTraditionally, the timing of the vernal equinox is at the moment when the Sun enters 0.00 Aries.  This indicates the changes of the seasons and the equal timing for day and night. However, Tropical/Western zodiac does not match with the sidereal or Vedic zodiac, where the vernal equinox point is now in Pisces. The reason for this is due to the precession of the equinox – a period of 26,000 years – due to the Earth’s wobble on its axis.


As a consequence of precession of the equinox, the pole star (a star that does not rise or set, such as the North star) changes, as does the earth’s orientation, to the viewing of circumpolar stars. In other words, we will see different circumpolar stars throughout time. Our current North Star, Polaris, points to the direction of the North Pole, but this was not always the case. Thuban, in the constellation of Draco, was once the North Star, ~3942 BC to ~1800 BC.  Due to the precession of the equinoxes, Thuban will become the North Star again ~21,000 AD.

Image So, the *actual* constellation – Aries – does not match up in the sky at the same point at the vernal equinox, if you were to go outside and look. You may wonder why we still use the Aries point to indicate the beginning of spring in the western zodiac, and this will be a good question. There’s no one final conclusive answer on that one. A mathematical construct has meaning within the context from which it is derived.

In accord with antiquity, mathematical constructions have served the purpose of drawing meaning between observations and recording events from the past into the future. There is practical application for both methods of astrology, using either the Vedic or Western Zodiac, just be mindful to be consistent within each system. Symbolic meaning of points are only relevant so long as they are observed to be relevant and descriptive of actual occurrences. It makes no difference whether or not you call midnight “midnight” as long your labeling is consistent within your system. Often times, I see people trying to merge the Western zodiac signs with the Westernized version of the Vedic signs, and, in my personal opinion, meaning is lost this way.

Finally, why do we put the Earth in the center of our astrological charts? The reason is that this is the point of our observation. We live on Earth. Earth is from where we look at the sky. Astrology is the art of subjectivity as well as a quest for objectivity in the sense that it is realistically melding the subjective and objective viewpoints together for interpretation. The apparent objectivity of the outer spheres is still only apparent, based on the perspective of from where one is looking. Such is the basis of all astronomical measurement to the exclusion of satellites and other orbiting, recording devices. Regardless, for all practical purposes, we are still pretty much Earth-based. Relax, you’re not meant to understand everything all at once!

Here is a link to figure out the precise timing for this event for the area where you live.  Click on the link. Then click on, “Local times for March Equinox 2014 worldwide.” There is a caveat, however. The software I used to drawn up the chart for the vernal equinox shows Aries at 0.00 at 9:59a, not 9:57a as the website indicated for the timing of the vernal equinox. Please be mindful of that when you draw up your charts. Stay tuned for Part II of the Vernal Equinox.

Ka Malana, 2014©

Note about image credits: Where I could find the actual source of the photo, it is credited. These images were found using Google Images; however, in certain cases the originals could not be found. Many times the website included the picture without linking back to where it was found. In this case, the credit would be falsely attributed. If the photography is uncredited, in most cases that means it is my own (such as the rose above). Please feel free to contact me for any questions or clarifications, or if you wish to share my images. Blog writing is unique in that it is editable, and always subject to updates and revisions. Thank you for reading!

HeartMath and Coherence: the Science of Syncing up

I’ve been using a special tool sometimes when I meditate. It’s a device that measures your Heart Rate Variability. It’s a biofeedback tool. I just think that it’s a very useful tool. Since I’ve been using it, I’ve managed to increase my coherence, achieving up to 89% high coherence during my meditation. You will understand the measurement algorithm better once you read about it and experience it, but it is not necessary to understand it in order to benefit. Heart Math

Here is the gist of it. The brain and the heart are in two-way communication via the nervous system. Studies show that emotions determine heart rhythms. The electromagnetic field generated by the heart changes based on the rhythm pattern of the heart. Regulating stress and transforming it is based on modifying your behavior by modifying your perceptions. What heart rate variability measures is the differences from beat-to-beat in the heart rate. Research has demonstrated that a calmer person exhibits more variability in the HRV wave form, and that certain pathologies correlate with low HRV. Higher coherence indicates synchronization within the autonomic nervous system, since heart rate and rhythm are mostly under the control of the autonomic nervous system. Research also indicates that a person can train and improve there coherence through a biofeedback tool, developed by HeartMath, a tool that measures HRV.

“A number of studies have shown that HRV is an important indicator of both physiological resiliency and behavioral flexibility, reflecting an individual’s capacity to adapt effectively to stress and environmental demands. It has become apparent that while a large degree of instability is detrimental to efficient physiological functioning, too little variation can also be pathological. An optimal level of variability within an organism’s key regulatory systems is critical to the inherent flexibility and adaptability that epitomize healthy function.

The normal variability in heart rate is due to the synergistic action of the two branches of the ANS, which act in concert with mechanical, hormonal and other physiological mechanisms to maintain cardiovascular system parameters in their optimal ranges and to permit appropriate reactions to changing external or internal conditions. Many people are surprised to learn that the heart actually sends more information to the brain than the brain sends to the heart via the ANS, and that the rhythmic patterns produced by the heart directly affect the brain’s ability to process information, including decision-making, problem-solving and creativity.” (Source, n.d.)

Also, if you are interested in this device, or learning about, I encourage you to review the following book:

Childre, D. & Rozman, D. (2005). Transforming Stress: The HeartMath solution for relieving worry, fatigure, and tension.Oakland, CA:New Harbinger Publication, Inc.

The Sound of Crickets, Hafiz, and the Moon

Lately, we’ve had the pleasure of hosting a most lovely cricket. For me, the presence of a cricket (inside my house) and right next to me on the couch, is usually a sign. Yes, this has happened to me before, but not exactly in the same way. I have no idea how he got inside, but I did coax him out. I want him to live!

The night he was singing the loudest, I was writing, and I needed the support. I was reaching within myself for my inner voice, feeling for it, digging deep, and really just trying to use words evenly. Crickets are special. This cricket may even be my ancestor.

In China, people have been known to keep crickets as pets.

ImageWatercolor by Qi Baishi (1864–1957)

This morning I awoke at 4:30am.  My body/mind/spirit wants to move deeper into my spiritual practice. I received the message that this is what I am going to be doing now. I’ve been nudged. Now it’s up to me to “go with it.” By 5:00am, I decided to go for a walk, and it was a little bit on the chilly side. Yes, I live in sunny California, so when it’s dark – I get sensitive to the cold.

I turned to head back home, and there it was: the brilliant, large, glowing moon. I felt like I could walk to it… and maybe even hug it.

Full moon photo via Lee Capps.
Full moon photo via Lee Capps.


Also, this morning, I opened a box of special books that were in storage (I was looking for the Secret of the Golden Flower), and I found this poem by Hafiz, that I’d like to share with you:

I Took It as a Sign

Someone sent a band to my house,

And it started playing

At five in the morning.

I took this as a sign

God wanted me to sing!

Then the moon joined in

And a few of the tenor-voiced stars,

And the earth offered its lovely belly

As a drum.

Before I knew it,

I realized

All human beings could be happy

If they just had a few music lessons

From a Sweet Old Maestro

Like Hafiz

Should we be gossiping? Or, should we be getting to work? Full Moon in Virgo 3/16



Hello Everybody!

I’m looking at the chart for Sunday, March 16, 2014, full moon in Virgo at 10:08 am, PDT. This lunation falls at exactly 26.02 Pisces/Virgo. Therefore, the Sabian symbol for the full moon is Virgo 27. If it were 26.00 degrees it would be interpreted as the Virgo 26. However, since it has the 2 minutes, it’s interpreted as 27. Make sense? If there are minutes (02) after the degree (26), it gets interpreted as the following degree number (27). If there aren’t minutes (00) after the degree (26) it would get interpreted as the degree number (26).

Aristocratic elderly ladies drinking afternoon tea in a wealthy home. (Virgo 27) (Moon)

A harvest moon illuminates the sky. (Pisces 27) (Sun)

My interpretation for this Full Moon is to ask yourself the question: Should we be gossiping? Or, should we be getting to work?

What has come and gone at this point is “water under the bridge.” Looking at the Uranus square Pluto square Jupiter aspect, shows us that we’re still dealing with major themes around business (Capricorn) and family (Cancer).  We should not let this distract us. This is a VIRGO full moon. Virgo is going to get to work on whatever subject needs it. Virgo is the analytical mind in service to the spirit, universal consciousness- the ONE-represented by Pisces.

Chiron and Neptune are very well-matched right now, holding hands in conjunction, and they are asking us to release these wounds and give them up. It’s done. What’s done is done.

This full moon is making harmonious aspects with retrograde Saturn (Capricorn ruled). Both the Sun and Moon in this full moon (Sun opposite Moon) are in good cahoots. Look at the frame work you’ve lain down already; look at the ancestors who have come before you. It’s time to just keep working and be dutiful.  That‘s what the energy and astrology supports.

Meanwhile, Neptune conjunction conjunct Chiron has been reaching out to Mars/North Node conjunction, courage and forward momentum is the call to BALANCE of Libra. ALL of the retrograde planets are “getting” you to re-do things, but I think it’s also saying: you made your plans, you can observe *while* you enact them. If you should stumble or fail, this is helpful information for your continuation. I believe that the universe is also saying, YOU over there! YOU keep up the GOOD WORK!

Credit: Stunning artwork is by Dilarosa

Article written by Ka Malana ©2014

Mars Sacred Geometry: The Pattern and the Process



Astrology defined by prominent astrologer Marc Edmund Jones is “the science of all beginnings.” (qtd. in Rudhyar, 1972)

In an astrological chart, Mars shows us about the way a person initiates. But, if we stop there in our understanding, we may miss the full Mars ‘Cycle.’  After all, astrology is very much about the study of initiation, and understanding the cycles is key to the process of understanding what initiation even means. So, we need context.

With astrology, we are always asking when is it a good time for ____________?

If you’ve ever jumped on a merry-go-round at a playground when you were a child, you’d probably have found that you spent some time at the perimeter, tracking the movements of the wheel for a moment, to get a good indication for the speed of the wheel, before deciding on the precise moment to take your leap. You wanted to find that precise moment when you could be most certain that you’d clear handle-bars or another person, and land safely on your target.

You needed to see the full cycle of the wheel in order to recognize its pattern of movement. Then, you could derive the speed of the wheel, and therefore your own mechanics of speed and timing, in order to achieve the success of getting on the ride uninjured while it’s moving. Our ability to recognize patterns is essential on a day-to-day basis; we need pattern recognition to analyze and understand our environments, even just to handle our own body mechanics!

According to Stephen Few, consultant and instructor at the University of California at Berkeley, “our visual sense is highly tuned to spot patterns, and this natural ability can be trained to achieve even greater levels of acuity.” That is, we are recognizing patterns all the time at work, and in the world around us.  Most of the time we unconsciously understand and organize the data we receive from everyday interactions, to draw conclusions. This, According to Few, is something that everyone can improve upon.

improvements result primarily from learning which of the many possible patterns in data are meaningful to your work and then also learning—through practice—to spot these patterns quickly, even in a dense forest of visual noise. As with all skills, practice in pattern recognition is required to move from average ability to true expertise. (Few, n.d. Perceptual Edge)

Now, the only way that I know of to improve pattern recognition is through observation. Sometimes we need tools, such as computer software, to help us do this. We definitely need the expertise of those who have come before us to contribute to the knowledge database of information regarding what has been observed.  A lot of research has been done in many cases, and we need not reinvent the wheel.

While in some contexts, Astrology is still very much an art, made up of rich symbolism and analogy. It takes a gifted visionary to be able to delineate information intuitively. It also, like Rudhyar writes, takes science, because science is a process for discovery.

The future is the bright light in our hearts


Today is a special day. It’s March 4th. I’m not going to write about astrology right now, but about the sentence, “March forth.” Sure, there’s something astrological about that, but I just want to talk about the energy surrounding it. On March 4th, today, is a very special opportunity to keep moving forward to the dream, the vision. Inside our hearts is the key to everything–our faith–is paramount.  Today, I encourage you to find that unshakeable strength you had the moment you were born. Find that inspiration where all other inspirations come from. Find that place inside your heart that knows, silently. That knows. This is ‘how’ to March 4th. Once you’ve found it, honor it. Love it deeply. It is your precious heart.


sculpture by Paige Bradley