(Don't feel like reading this (admittedly lengthy!) blog post? Head on over to our YouTube channel and watch the vlog instead!)
This Friday, August 11th, marks a new New Moon. This time, the New Moon appears in the sign of Leo.
So the New Moon is the beginning phase of the lunar cycle. It’s also known as the Dark Moon, and is when the lunar cycle starts anew. As the Moon orbits the Earth, she of course grows from seeming darkness, to a sliver of a crescent, to a half-circle gibbous, and then increases to her most glorious and famous phase, the Full Moon.
And then…the movement reverses, and the Moon appears to decrease in fullness and brightness until its dark again. This beginning of the Moon cycle, when she’s dark and full not with light but only with the potential for her new growth…this is where we find ourselves now.
The New Moon is a powerful time! The air right now is full of possibility, of pure potentiality! This is the time to plant and foster seeds of what we want to sow in life. The New Moon is all about Intention and Manifestation. It’s about declaring what we want to bring into fruition in our lives.
This is not the time for dwelling on everything you did wrong. That’s a different moon phase! This is the time for feeling into your power of Creation. This is the time when the slate is wiped clean, and as the Moon is starting over again, so are YOU. YOU get to start anew, becoming aware of the Law of Attraction AND the Law of Cause and Effect, both the incredibly feminine power of pulling what you want TO you (which describes the Law of Attraction), and the masculine power of taking action that causes the effects that you desire (which describes the Law of Cause and Effect). So during the New Moon, we are going to utilize both feminine and masculine energies.
With this New Moon in Leo, it gives a definite fiery and spicy flavor to our creative energies.
So let’s talk about the sign of Leo for a moment.
Leo. What can we say about this explosive sign? The sign of Leo definitely has an image. You undoubtedly know a few Leos, and you undoubtedly know when they are in the room before you even look for them!
Leo is an exuberant, enthusiastic and FIERY sign. And I keep using the term “fiery” because Fire is the element that rules Leo. Fire is an amazingly powerful , influential and transformative element. There really is nothing else quite like it in the world. Fire heats our bodies, our homes and lights our world at night, keeping the darkness at bay. In the days of humanity before electricity, fire enabled us to cook our food, to survive the harsh winters and to see our way at night. In short, fire was crucial to our lives in the same way that electricity is to our modern lives. You could say that fire was the first electricity!
Leo is , of course, the sign of the Lion. This is a big, badass sign that seems to be born to rule a kingdom. This is the sign of kings and queens. And not the boring ones either. This is the sign of the history-making, eccentric and legendary kings and queens that have rhymes made about them centuries after their rule. People born under this sign tend to be naturally courageous, regal, sexual and expansive. That is, they tend to have a natural confidence to be AND remain themselves more than any other sign. It is my personal theory that all of us already have these traits and more in our Spirit, but over time, living among humans on this Earth, most of us have learned to question ourselves and feel ashamed of our desires, covering up the brightest, most exciting aspects of our Spirit in layers of dull and obedient, socially acceptable mundaneness.
For example, you may have always had a deep and powerful desire to be a part-time nude model and pose for an artists’ studio for money, and you fantasize about it and can’t get the idea out of your mind. However, you’re now a “proper” member of society, and as such that is just not something that someone who is “proper” does, and so you don’t. Leos, being born under the exciting and unconquearable sign that they are, won’t let that stop them. Leos seem to somehow manage to find a way to do what they want, and to let out aspects of themselves that others are too afraid to let out. You can accuse Leos of being a lot of things, but boring is NOT one of them.
This New Moon, there is an abundance of Leo energy in the air for us to tap into, work with and harness in order to shape our lives to what we want. So what aspects can we explore and grow in our own Spirits to manifest the lives that we desire?
This New Moon in Leo, we are going to hone in and focus on three aspects of Leo energy to bring into our lives: Creativity and Courage. And these things often go hand-in-hand, as we’ll discuss. So who would like more of these vital spices in their life? I know I would!
One of the things I love most about following the lunar calendar is getting more opportunities to renew, reinvigorate and reinvent ourselves. The mainstream Gregorian calendar gets one shot at this particular energy, every New Year’s Day. The lunar calendar resets and renews every month, and this is not just more merciful and more fun, but it’s more natural! When you take a look at the natural world, cycles of renewal and regeneration are abundant and very much a part of nature. Tides go in and out, low and high, every day, day after day. The Moon circles the Earth, the Earth circles the Sun. If you’re a woman, you have to look no further than your own body. Your feminine body renews and resets itself every month. This cycle of frequent renewal is natural. Stasis and constancy is unnatural.
So, during this New Moon as with every New Moon, what you’ve done or haven’t done is PAST. It is in your rearview mirror. Now is NOT the time for the Inner Critic. It’s time to let all that go and start over and recommit to doing things your way and creating the life that you want.
So let’s examine our Creativity. No sign is more associated with Creativity than the sign of Leo. People born under this sign are famous and infamous for creating. They create their own images, their own career paths, their own lives, their art and even their own images in dynamic and original ways.
There are a million things to create and just as many ways TO create. What does being creative mean to you? Does being creative have the most traditional meaning to you? That is, do you have an artistic project that you’ve shelved away are just plain stopped giving energy to? Is there a project that you started – a book, a painting, a sculpture, a business – that you’ve just abandoned in the shadow of “being real” and “being a grownup” and “real life.” Perhaps you’ve thought about starting a new project, a new career or a new business but never got around to starting. Ask yourself why that may be. What happened to your creative project? Was it simply overwhelm in having to do so much to get it “properly” off the ground that you just drowned in possibilities of it and just froze, and did nothing? If so, it’s ok. And now, during this New Moon in Leo, the energy peaking that supports you in your new creative beginnings. You don’t have to do a million things. You only have to start. This is all about starting and re-committing to follow through on your creative pursuits. This may take a months, six months, a year or more. But it’s all about starting.
For example, let’s say you used to do oil paintings, and you used to love it, and always, as a younger and “more naïve” person, you always planned to be an artist. Then you found yourself with credit card debt and a college tuition to pay for, and your painting became less and less frequent as you worked more and more. THEN you met someone, spent even more of your free time with them, and then you started to have a family. Before you knew it, your canvas was moved into the basement, your paints got thrown into a crate in the garage and life marched on. And you may even be happy with your life, but…there’s a part of you that feels unfulfilled and unexpressed. You may still pine after your painting, and daydream about having that perfect empty day with nowhere to be and nothing to do so that you can whip out your canvas and paints and create that masterpiece that’s in your soul!
The only problem is…that perfect day hasn’t come, and may never come. This New Moon in Leo, I challenge you to MAKE the time to re-discover and re-birth your creative side. It is so natural to want to create things and even to leave a legacy in this world. This most often and easily expresses itself in physical procreation, the act of creating children. However, the creation of art, innovation, invention and businesses are another natural extension of the human need to create. You must accept the fact that finding the “perfect” time to bring forth the projects and the art that is within you may be impossible, especially if you’ve padded out your life with a busy job and a family. It is up to you to MAKE the time to create what you want to create.
Furthermore, you only need to do ONE thing at a time. Please don’t let overwhelm cause you to freeze and not move forward. Take small steps. In our earlier example, say you are trying to create a new oil painting after decades of hiatus. You don’t need to find your inspiration, outline your painting and whip out half of it on the first day. Of course, it’s been YEARS. Your products may need to be replaced. How about for Day One you just set up your canvas and inventory your products. Get familiar with your colors. See what’s good and usable and make a list of what you will need more of. THAT’S moving forward with your creative endeavor, even though it’s not the sexy part yet. Day Two can be about reading or watching videos about painting, getting tips from instructors, getting inspired and mentally geared up to create again. Notice these are all small steps. Don’t let big daunting tasks overwhelm you, ok?
So I ask you now: What creative projects are calling you? From a locked drawer? From a garage? From a dusty attic? Or from deep within you, wanting to be birthed but held within you.
And this is not just about creative projects, but also about creating your ideal life. Are you living the life that you really want? I think that one reason that movies and video games are so popular is because they allow people to live out aspects of themselves that they are afraid to let out. Many people will automatically think of negative, destructive things and say, Yeah thank God that they have Grand Theft Auto so that they don’t steal cars for real! But that’s not what I’m talking about here. A lot of us fantasize about a life of adventure, of excitement, of sex, of sensuality, of wealth, of world travel, of beauty, of mystery and of spontaneity and fun. And instead of creating this in our own lives, we live small and proper and live these through films and video games and TV shows.
This New Moon in Leo, it’s time to ask yourself what type of lifestyle and self-image you may secretly want to have, and ask yourself what is getting in your way and preventing you from having it. Are you playing bridge as a weekly hobby when what you really want to do is pole dance in 7-inch platform heels? (I’m a pole dance instructor, and I absolutely, highly recommend pole by the way!!) Bridge is fine if that is authentically what you are drawn to, but it’s not if it’s not what you actually want to do. This is just one example.
So the second aspect of this New Moon in Leo energy that we want to explore is Courage. So, yes, of course, what aspect do you immediately think of when you think of the sign of the Lion? Undoubtedly it’s Courage! So much so that there is of course a character in one of the most iconic films of all time, The Wizard of Oz, called the Cowardly Lion, of course! And the idea behind this character is his strangeness and how he is so opposite of how he’s supposed to be. A lion is always courageous…except for that one! Poor Cowardly Lion! Another one you may be familiar with is Brave Heart Lion, the Care Bear cousin, who had the superpower of what? Courage!
So in investigating your dormant or abandoned creative projects, may there be perhaps another deep and secret reason that you are not creating the project or life that you want? Could it actually be fear holding you back, masquerading as “not having enough time”? You may shake your head, but never underestimate the potency and insidiousness of fear.
When we really think about it, it is quite remarkable how fear grows within us with age, like weeds choking a house. When we were young, we were fearless. Physically at first, and yes most of us now view that physical fearlessness as foolishness. The idea that we had absolutely NO fear of, for example, cliffs or cars or growling dogs may strike us as foolish now, but fast forward to later in life, after we discovered the effects of gravity and learned that growling dogs should probably be avoided until they’re not growling. You were wiser and not by any means foolish, BUT you were still fearless. You still likely knew exactly what you liked, what you wanted to be, how you wanted to spend your life and how everything was going to play out in your favor. Initially, you had your dreams and didn’t care about anything anyone told you that opposed your dreams. Dammit, you were going to be a veterinarian and take care of animals and live on a ranch and make lots of money. It didn’t initially matter that people said, “You can’t afford to go to medical school! You’re crazy!” You just believed what you believed and wanted what you wanted.
But over time, what happened? You may have slowly let other people’s doubts and negativity seep into the creation of your own life, and with it, you caught the contagion of other people’s fear.
Fear is what keeps us small and cramped against a wall when what we want to do is unfurl into our larger-than-life, colorful true selves. One of the most deeply ingrained fears is that of not getting social approval for how we live our lives.
We humans are social creatures, and though this has a great many benefits, one of the consequences of this social tendency is that we tend to care about what others think of us. A great deal, actually. When we are very young, we are often given a pass for this, at first. We are allowed to be loud and colorful and brash and completely our own person. When we do something socially unacceptable or shocking or against the grain, everyone just laughs. All that begins to change as we get older, however. As we age, we are increasingly reprimanded and punished for being too individualistic and socially outside the accepted norm. We are taught tirelessly how to behave, and rewarded heavily for behaving as society demands. The result of this programming is that by the time we reach adulthood, most of us not just seek to have society’s stamp of approval upon our lives, but are secretly afraid of displeasing society.
So many of us are taught that we should want and go after the same things, and yet…there is no way that that these wild human spirits that showed such colorful and dynamic and willful natures in their infancy and youth would ever be happy beaten down and restricted and fenced in to existences as dull, gray and watered-down adults.
Society LOVES a tame, buttoned-up, predictable and obedient human. It always makes me both laugh and want to throw something at my computer screen when I see a commercial (and there’s HUNDREDS of them) that use a slogan or a tagline of “Be an Original!” or “Be a Trailblazer!” while showing people doing backflips in colorful clothing and sunglasses or some foolishness. And the product they’re selling? Always the epitome of zombie, lifeless, mediocre, same-as-the-next-guy consumerism that is used to DULL pain with mind-numbing (or worse) harmful and addictive pleasure instead of CURING pain. The message seems to be, “Want to stand out, be noticed, live the life of your dreams and have fun with your life? You don’t need to take responsibility for your decisions! You don’t need to grow your courage and take back the reins of your life and risk pissing off the status quo and those around you, even your family and friends who want you to be just like them! NO! That’s way too risky and uncomfortable! All you have to do is give us money and we’ll give you this watermelon gum! Presto, you’re a creative, original trailblazer, because we say so!” Eye roll. Gag.
If you feel that you are not living the life that you want, or that you are not producing the project that you want, you need to ask yourself, “What am I afraid of?” Fear is undoubtedly playing a role in preventing you from being the full-bodied creator that you really are. Fear of failure or rejection is an extremely common catalyst for living smaller and “safer” than we would like. You may be tormenting yourself with “What Ifs”, such as “What If” I fail and everyone laughs at me, or says, “I told you so. I told you that you would fail. You should have listened to me. See, I know more than you.”
OR you could be tormenting yourself with ideas of “What if I succeed?” Though it sounds ridiculous in the full light of day, upon closer inspection we find that it is actually is a very valid fear. Success brings CHANGE. And God knows that even sought-after change can be painful and terrifying to go through, like transforming from a caterpillar to a butterfly. We romanticize that transformation as a symbolically beautiful, totally predictable process with a happy ending, but tell that to the caterpillar while he goes into his pitch black cocoon, no books to describe what’s going to happen, no light to see what is happening, while strange, alien appendages push out of his body. Does it hurt? It very well might. No butterfly has ever described the experience.
Success and standing out might disrupt your peace and comfort. People react to success and they react to others stepping out of the shadows and living large and colorful lives. They especially start thinking and having emotions come up when that someone was a person who used to be where they were but now has sort of taken off into the stratosphere, doing exciting things, living a more colorful life and being noticed. Strong people react well, but many people don’t react well to the success of others. In other words, it’s guaranteed that at least some people will not approve of your success or your transformation. And we know how powerful that fear could be.
This may have even happened to you in the past. I know it has happened to me. As an example, I have a couple very vivid memories of my experience of the “Tall Flower” syndrome. Let me explain what that is.
When I was very young, I of course loved being liked by other kids. It was very important to me and much less stressful and more fun when all the other kids liked me. I was always naturally very nice, so that happened 90% of the time. And so when they were happy with me, I was happy! However, I learned very quickly that being liked was very conditional. Being mean and selfish and not sharing your toys of course was one way not to be liked, but that was a given. But I found that another way that could make at least several kids not like you was doing too well. Winning a game or contest or spelling bee too many times. Being too pretty and receiving too many compliments from adults and a little later, from the opposite sex. Having too many nice outfits that get everyone’s attention. These things, though they would make me feel so good at first, quickly became sources of shame and pain as I learned that it turned other kids against me, something that we now as adults recognize to be jealousy and insecurity.
This phenomena, sometimes referred to as the “Tall Flower or Tall Poppy” syndrome, has been imprinted on a lot of us early in life at a time when we are most desperate for social approval. It was given that name due to the tendency of a person who is doing well – that is, metaphorically becoming a flower that is taller than the other flowers – basically being cut down to the size of all the others through ridicule, cruelty, negativity and social ostracization.
And never underestimate the immense power of these early life imprints. Your early experiences, if they are strong, can be imbedded deep within your subconscious mind, triggering your behavior well into adulthood. For example, these early experiences of ridicule and mean behavior from other kids when I got too much attention really hurt, and even though I’m a wiser, stronger more reasonable adult now and know that the “right” answer is to never let anyone dull your shine, I STILL struggle with the “Tall Flower” syndrome. I still find myself becoming self-conscious and shrinking down when I get a lot of attention or am doing really well in life. In fact, I still can often even go so far as to sabotage myself if I’m doing too well. It’s basically my subconscious being afraid that I’m going to get attacked again for being too glittery, too successful, too sexy (God that’s a big one), too much.
So this month, I want you to ask yourself, What do I want in my life that I am afraid to obtain? And what exactly am I afraid of? Is it attention from others? Am I afraid that I’ll be ridiculed? Attacked? Socially ostracized? Is it fear of failure? That everyone will laugh at me?
Now is the time to really explore these questions, journal on them and NOW is the turning point to pay attention to areas of your life that may be calling out to you for attention. The New Moon in Leo is NOT the time for conservatism and stodgy mundaneness. Lord knows society pushes enough of that on us every day. Especially if you spend your days in corporate America.
The New Moon in Leo is all about manifestation of your larger-than-life, colorful and passionate creative desires. Art, performing, a new image, a new lifestyle. The ruling planet of Leo is the Sun, and the Sun is a massive, life-giving, life-affirming, blazing, bright, fiery force that leaves its mark and effect on everything in sight. Our very lives revolve around it. The Sun can cause fires, it can change our appearance by darkening our skin and bleaching our hair. It can peel paint and warp the wood on houses. Its proximity and distance causes the very seasons to change. The Sun is a larger-than-life, impactful, vital, vibrant, creative force, and cannot be ignored. These are the energies that we are dealing with this month, so let’s harness them and weave them into our lives!
So grab a journal, and ask yourself, What creative desires do I have within me that I have been ignoring or hiding away? What creative projects do I need to expose to the light of the Sun in order to express myself fully and be fulfilled? Is my ignored creative project my own life or my own self-image? Am I pretending to be someone I’m not just to fit in?
Also ask yourself, Does fear play a role in why I’ve hidden away or ignored or given up on my creative projects? Am I afraid that I will fail and be ridiculed? Or am I afraid that I will succeed and be ridiculed or worse, attacked?
Really feel into this and explore it, and more importantly, ACT ON IT! Leo and its ruling planet, the Sun, are ruled by the element of Fire. Fire is a directive, masculine element that is all about ACTION and DOING. It’s about the outer world and making physical and energetic change.
So now, to really cap off this New Moon, let's do a One Card Bridge Draw. How this works is we will pull one card to represent us as we are now, we will pull one card that represents what we want to achieve and obtain this New Moon, and then we will do a blind draw on a card that will BRIDGE the two, explaining how we can get what where we want to be.
The card that I feel best represents us this New Moon month is the Page of Wands.
The suit of Wands is ruled by the element of Fire, which is the same element that rules the sign of Leo. This suit has the same properties that we are going after: creativity and courage. The Page is the student of the Wands court, the one who is studying to ascend the rankings of the nobility.
The card that I feel represents the energies we seek is the Strength card.
Strength is one of my absolute favorite cards in the Tarot. When you look at this card, what do you see? A woman is controlling a lion. Now, you may recognize the symbol of the lion as also being the symbol of Leo. In fact, this card, Strength, is often considered the card of Leo. In this card, the lion is there to represent something fearful, strong, potentially dangerous and that will get a reaction out of everyone around it. The lion represents your Inner Strength, your Inner Spirit, that part of you that is fierce, powerful and is to be respected. Now, in this image and even more so in the original RWS imagery, the woman is shown as controlling the lion GENTLY, not through force but through gentleness and a light hand. She rules by compassion and calm intuition.
This card is all about letting your Spirit out into the world, in all its beauty and muscle and fearsomeness. Notice that the lion is also a meateater. It is a carnal beast. There are undoubtedly parts of you that are carnal and passionate, but that is a part of you as well. Let it out, but let it out in a controlled manner, keeping control of yourself and your world.
So how can we move towards this ideal of Inner Strength that we see portrayed here. Let's pull a card at random, and that card is...
The VIII of Wands! This deck is all about taking action, right now! The suit of Wands is again about the very energies we are working with this month, and the Eight is also about material manifestation. This card says do it now, not next week, not next month! Work on your creative projects and growing your creative life today!
Well, I know this was a LOONG one! Whew! Thank you for taking time to join me today!