I was in high school when I first started reading the Tarot. I used a cheap deck- one where the Minor Arcana had barely any instructions and the guide that came with it, introduced me to spreads like the Celtic Cross and how to ask basic yes/no questions. I found the meanings rather inadequate, so I added my own and also looked up online interpretations. I was hooked, and soon enough I saved up to get my own Rider Waite and the Thoth Tarot decks.
Being a witch can get pretty expensive at times.
Sometimes, you have to think twice before choosing to buy a fancy crystal or an elaborately carved candle stand or a new prettier notebook for your grimoire. Sometimes, you may run out of witchy supplies right when you need it the most and you have to dash to the nearest thrift store or the supermarket to restock your candles, incenses and spices. Perhaps there’s a major spell you want to perform and the phase of the moon is just right- but you’re still saving up for all the ingredients. Or maybe you’re just a baby witch, recently initiated to the Craft and you’re overwhelmed by the sheer variety of tools and materials that you need.
May is relatively quiet astrologically speaking until the New Moon in Taurus mid-month. Unlike your typical mellow Taurus Moon, this one coincides with Uranus shifting out of Aries and into Taurus for the bulk of the next 8 years. Uranus represents revolution, innovation, instability, and nonlinear change. Its shift into Taurus brings these themes to bear collectively in the realms of finances, housing, sustenance, nature–and on a personal level, in whatever house of your natal chart Uranus is moving into. At the same time, Mars shifts into Aquarius and squares Uranus. Oh, my! Mars is the warrior god, so when these two get together, we are bound to notice. Mars and Uranus will square each other twice more over the course of the year, so this month we are likely to see the first act of a story that plays out over the course of the next year, and the next 8 years. We are likely to experience a destabilization, possible sudden endings or beginnings, and a push toward individuality and freedom in some area of our lives.
Join me, Witch. This Beltane, I’m choosing slow-bubbling jubilance, ancestral blessings of fire and smoke, and ecstatic dirt-under-the-nails garden prayer. I’m remembering the bright bloom of the yet-to-come into being, and I’m doing it all before moonrise. Let’s paint our faces with the still-chilled mud and take to the sky-kissing hilltop where the bones of the burned are buried, and let’s dance bare-breasted by the light-of-day like they never could.
It’s up to us, you know. Let’s laugh to heal our great-grandmothers’ melancholy. Let’s work the magick out-loud the Old Ones had to work in secret. These are the days of the rising Witch, the heathen waking wild, and the crow-woman spreading her wide wings and taking flight.
How is it with your moon-sick heart, Witch? How is it with that mud-loving, wanderlusting soul you kept tucked away so carefully between your aching ribs all Winter long? Tell me, you sorceress of sweet and sad stories, what hopeful visions have you to share with me now, as this first full moon of Spring swells up under my skin and softens those unforgiving angles of belief and conviction that fan my rage-hungry flames but starve my more joyous magick? Share with me your most gracious and feather-light anecdotes, and I’ll drink from that cool-running, sweet-water river you keep flowing between your ancient, inner altar tended tirelessly by our grandmothers and the over-running wellspring of your heathen heart.
Speak truth now. This moon is pulling our secrets out from all our dark places, singing a siren song so mournful and beauteous even our bitterest demons cannot resist its lunar temptation tonight. You tell me what it means to heal from the fallen angel’s grief, and I’ll tell you what it means to be a moonstruck poetess who wants nothing more than to paint a sepia-toned world brighter with what few words she has learned from this bizarre incarnation. You teach me how to brew a homemade salve for my aching bits left dry from a long-lasting Crone season, and I’ll teach you how to hunt inside those hot and steaming caves of your flawed-to-perfection Pagan mind, how to mine those precious gems of passion and desire, anguish and melancholy, artistic courage and sure-bodied dance.
Let’s walk amongst these ancestral stones tonight, Witch. Let’s move through this perilous moonlight together and bleed all over this hallowed ground while we journey toward the warmth of the Beltane torch-fires. Let’s ask the elements teach us who we are. I’ll remember what it means to be whole as a fire-veined Priestess, and you remind me the bliss to be had within the flesh of a nectar-sipping mermaid.
Together, let’s call upon the full Storm Moon to sweep through our Craft and spring-clean the dust from our routines, from those over-dull rituals and from those altars that have for too long gone unchanged. You bid the torrential waves wash over my Witchcraft, and I’ll send some fire your way, to be sure. I need your medicine, and you need mine, my love, so let’s not be coy any longer. Let’s skip the small talk and get right to the red, bloody heart of the matter. In your eyes, I see who I might have been had my childhood left my skin unscathed, had my lovers been loyal and my courage applauded. In my eyes, you see who you might have been had your rebellion been rewarded, your vulnerable art praised, and your more timid prayers answered. Let’s see what sizzling steam arises when fire meets water now, my love, when you really see me and I really see you. Inside that hot mist encircling us both will be the cosmic language of birth and death, and we’ll both rest well tonight as wiser women warmed by my hearth and wet from your wild waters.
The potent Full Moon in Libra on March 31st carries us into April. With the polarity between self (Aries) and other (Libra) activated, keep in mind that we are who we are only related to others (I am me because you are you). A T-Square from the Full Moon to Mars and Saturn suggests that a disciplined and long-term approach to public role and responsibilities could help ease tension. There is a New Moon in Aries on April 15th, conjunct with Uranus. Mercury stations direct at the same time. This is a powerful and radical new beginning, a time for innovation and originality. (You may wish to wait a few days until Mercury gains some speed to set any intentions, or initiate action.) Finally, on April 29th, we have a Full Moon in Scorpio, highlighting embodiment, sensuality, and sexuality.
Happy birthday Aries! The month before your birthday, as the sun transits the twelfth house, is a time to go deeply within, to reflect and release the past year. This can be a trying time as repressed and stagnant energies are freed from your depths, and rise up to consciousness for release. By the time your birthday rolls around you are likely to feel a surge of energy and upliftment to carry you into your new year. The Full Moon at the end of March may create tension and opportunity for creative reconciliation between yourself, your partnerships, and your work or vocation. Seek resolution by taking a long-term, disciplined approach to your career. Begin with the vision; set your intentions and take action after the Aries New Moon in mid-April.
The Full Moon at the end of March may create some tension between your desire for spiritual experience and your mundane, everyday life. Seek resolution through your perception. How can you integrate spirituality into your daily life? Seek an understanding of the situation that is bigger than contradiction, that makes room for all possibilities and all parts of you. A long-term approach to your personal philosophy, education, new experiences, and travel can also aid in resolving this tension. Much of the activity in April occurs in your twelfth house, your unconscious mind. This astrology works to churn your depths, to bring what has been repressed and stagnant to the surface; so you can become more aware so you can process so you can release. While sometimes trying, this process leads to healing and greater comfort with yourself.
The Full Moon at the end of March may see some tension between your community, your desires, and your most intimate ties. Seek resolution through intimacy, first with yourself, then with others. The resolution lies also in understanding that larger forces are at work; you are undergoing an initiation of sorts; the universe has its own divine order that we don’t always understand. Make a commitment to your own self-discovery. Use of the occult, (astrology, tarot, magic) could be very effective. With the Sun transiting your eleventh house, there is a focus this month on your community, networks, friendships, and the groups you belong to. Set intentions and begin anew in this area after the Aries New Moon mid-month.
The Full Moon at the end of March may indicate some tension between family, work, and partnerships. The solution lies in your relation to partnership: seek to honor your own needs, while also taking into account the needs and perspectives of those with whom you are in a relationship. Are you afraid of intimacy? Intimacy requires we let go of ourselves, it IS scary but incredibly rewarding. It requires patience and working through problems within a relationship. With the Sun transiting your tenth house, the focus in April is on your career (or calling). If this area of your life has been stalled, begin with the vision. Plan to move forward after the mid-April New Moon which brings more energy and forward movement to your career house.
The Full Moon at the end of March may indicate some tension between your perceptions & beliefs (your particular way of parsing experience and understanding the world), and your daily life (work, tasks, routines, health). Make the most of this energy by focusing on a particular goal or task, a long-term project, something you can commit to and see through to the end. Take a long-term, disciplined approach to your health. How can you shift your perspective or attitude so as to relieve the tension, guilt, anxiety, or fear you feel? The second half of April brings more and more focus to your personal philosophy and beliefs. There is an opportunity for a radical departure–a sudden release of beliefs that have kept you bound.
With a Saturn-Mars conjunction in your fifth house, you may feel blocked in your creative expression or in your sense of enjoyment. The key to resolving this blockage is to focus on a particular task or project, something long term that you can commit yourself too. The irony is, it’s this kind of focus and dedication that will bring you more joy and a sense of play. There’s a need as well at this time to define boundaries–to carve out space for yourself, and space for intimacy; to clarify what to keep for yourself, and what to share. There is a significant focus throughout April on intimacy. Set your intentions after the Aries New Moon mid-month. Intimacy requires we release control and enter into the abyss. That can be scary! But the rewards are rich.
The Full Moon in your sign at the end of March may indicate some tension between yourself, your partnerships, and your family or home life. Long-term, patient commitment to family/home life will release the tension. Seek the balance between your own needs and the needs of those you are close with. Don’t neglect yourself for the sake of others. The Aries New Moon mid-month brings the focus squarely to partnerships. Set your intentions, clarify the attitude with which you approach your closest relationships, clarify your vision of what you desire, how you wish to relate. With Uranus conjunct, the New Moon, a radical or original approach is in order.
The Mars-Saturn conjunction in early April may indicate a blockage to communication, or a troubled mind. Take a focused, disciplined, and long-term approach to your own mind and communication. You may wish to commit to meditation or another practice that disciplines the mind or commit to learning to refine your communication skills. The Aries New Moon mid-month offers you a new beginning and a newfound forward momentum with regards to work and daily routine. With Uranus conjunct the New Moon, take an innovate, original approach to your schedule and work-life, and ensure there is room for spontaneity.
Early April’s Mars-Saturn conjunction in your second house may indicate a blockage in your income or sense of self-worth. Your ability to provide for yourself may be in tension with your community and your creativity. Seek a disciplined, long-term approach to your income. Seek to uncover the psychology underneath; do you feel you deserve to experience abundance? Begin with clarity and intention; take action in the second half of the month, after Mercury is moving forward again. Mid-April’s Aries New Moon brings new beginnings and forward momentum to your creative projects, your self-expression, romance, play, and pleasure. With Uranus conjunct the New Moon, harness spontaneity, and originality.
The Full Moon at the end of March may bring some tension between your family/home-life, your career, and your own personal needs. Seek resolution through embodying discipline and focus. Delayed gratification at this time is in order. The predominant focus in April is in your fourth house of family and home-life. Give some extra attention to this part of your life, and come the New Moon mid-month, set intentions and prepare for new beginnings in this area. What do you desire to manifest? What is your long-term vision of home and family? With Uranus conjunct, the New Moon, radical and original approaches are most likely to succeed.
The Full Moon at the end of March activates all aspects of your mind: your unconscious, your thought processes, your intuition, your beliefs, and worldview are all in conversation. There is some tension, some contradiction within the structures of your mind. Seek to shift your beliefs, or find a higher perspective in which what appears to be in contradiction is integrated. With the Sun and Mercury transiting your third house this month, this is a time to clarify your means of communication. How can you be clear and direct and also kind and compassionate? The New Moon mid-month offers you a new beginning in this area.
The central focus for you in April is on income, resources, self-sufficiency; and underlying all of these: self-worth. Notice the subtle ways in which you undermine your own value through your beliefs, thoughts, and actions. Come the Aries New-Moon mid-month, set your intentions in this area. With Uranus conjunct, the New Moon, an innovative, original approach is most likely to succeed. One way to increase resources is to reduce expenses rather than to increase income. But any number of creative means of sustaining oneself exist, and they always begin with how we perceive ourself and treat ourself.
By Archita Mittra
The grown-ups thought it was a game, the make-believe pretences of two lonely girls. But we knew the magic was real, as real as the changing sky and careless laughter we scattered over the playground like stars.
March begins with a Full Moon in Virgo, bringing balance to the five planets chillin’ in Pisces. Virgo offers precision and discernment to what may otherwise be a rather dreamy, even foggy period of time. What is revealed to you? Harness Pisces’ compassion and forgiving nature to avoid becoming overly critical or judgmental when you glimpse the details through Virgo’s perfectionist gaze.
Welcome to the Quickening, my love. Here, we are living expressions of radical hope, blood-and-skin reliquaries for these ivory bones of ours. Beneath this full and vibrant moon, we are calling in what is ours with our very breath, and we are the living antidote to body-spirit separation. ‘Tis the season of sensual expression and embodied Craft, and the Witch’s body becomes a soft and soulful bridge between where she is and where she yearns to be. Know your longing as holy, and let’s wed our feeling flesh to our as-yet unrealized dreams.
While the total lunar eclipse in Leo happened at the end of January, we’ll continue to feel its effects ripple through February and beyond–eclipses are by far the most powerful of all astrological events. This eclipse encourages the merging of mind and heart, asking us to joyfully work toward the good of all. Eclipses block out the light, suggesting there is something we aren’t seeing clearly. With Leo, it’s bound to be our ego. We’re asked to investigate how our ego gets in the way and keeps us from expressing love. The partial solar eclipse in Aquarius on the 15th offers a counterbalance to the Leo eclipse, encouraging a healthy degree of detachment and objectivity: how can we live from the heart without getting swept away by passion, ego, or drama?