Webster’s Dictionary defines the word ‘depleted’ as “lessened markedly in quantity, content, power, or value.” The pressure of 2018 is dynamic, but it’s also exhausting– and the energy is wearing all of us down. Saturn and Jupiter are serious influences operating in the background, churning up damaged goods from our past and forcing us to take responsibility for what the outer shape of our lives looks like. And then Mars retrograde has us battling within ourselves, struggling with desires, defenses, and attachments that keep us trapped in something we’ve outgrown. There’s a lot to prove to ourselves this year, and that lends a certain heaviness to the atmosphere.
We all need a break! This week’s Leo New Moon (exact on Saturday morning at 5:58) is a moment of celebration– a reminder of the generosity of spirit that resides in the human heart. Leo embodies the energy of the sun– the heat-giving, life-affirming, magnanimous archetype that shines its light simply because it feels good to do so. Leo is known as the sign of the performer because when someone performs, they risk vulnerability in order to share themselves with an audience. Whenever I talk about Leo during an astrology reading, I relate it to the stand-up comedian who may seem nervous and awkward as they first take the stage. This isn’t egomania or self-absorption– it’s a calling to give their creativity to others, to make the contents of their mind visible for the world to see. So when the comedian cracks the first joke and it’s received and appreciated, the entire room is uplifted– because we love to be entertained and we hold up the people who are willing to do it.
The astrology of this new lunar cycle supports us as we recharge our batteries, inviting us to go after joy while the summer sun is still shining. Venus just moved into its home sign Libra, where it loves to be. Beautiful scenes and meaningful connections are pure gold to Libra, who seeks to release tension by finding harmony in relationships and aesthetic pleasure in its environment. Libra and Leo love each other because each sign facilitates enjoyment. And as the Moon joins the Sun in Leo over the weekend, we’re invited to be lifted up by fun, warmth, and laughter. Remind yourself of what you love, and embrace it. We can be bigger than the problems that plague us, especially when we are in it together.
Mercury is retrograde in Leo, and will make its second of three squares to Jupiter on this New Moon. If a blockage or issue presented itself in your life about a month ago, this weekend may allow a different perspective in, like seeds being planted in a mental garden. Mercury retrograde means that our internal dialogue is louder than normal– and we have the ability to hear creative, generous, vibrant Leo voices that we missed before. Taking the high road is supported by the sheer heat and positive spirit of this fiery nature. Leo the Lion is expansive and brave, and supports inner confidence, allowing us to overcome the minor annoyances that may have stood in our way.
As the New Moon begins to wax larger in the sky, it will move into Virgo and form an easy trine with Saturn and Uranus, all in earth signs. Next week is relatively quiet, with no major outer planet aspects. And then the Sun shifts into Virgo on August 23, immediately repeating this earth trine with Saturn and Uranus. This is an empowering energy, bringing with it a simple, sweet feeling of effectiveness. The gift of shifting from fire to earth signs is endurance and quality, reminding us that we are capable, competent, and worthy. Overall, this waxing lunar cycle brings a respite from the turmoil, and a time to renew ourselves in the fire of life so that we can feel our feet on solid ground.