virgoSaturday’s New Moon (7:11pm PDT) launched us into one of the most action-packed lunar cycles of 2012. The next month features a concentrated grouping of planetary events, which, in brief, translates into an intense period of facing our shadows, diving into deep emotional territory, and taking courageous, practical steps to restructure our lives.

The pull of the Underworld has been strong for the past few weeks. Pluto is stationing – appearing to stand still in the sky before reversing directions – and that event culminates Monday night, when the Dark Lord/Dark Goddess turns from Retrograde to Direct (10:07pm PDT). The purpose of the Underworld descent is to strip away or surrender what is stagnant, corrupt, inauthentic and sucking our vital life juice in order to clear space for regeneration and rebirth.

Dramatically co-inciding with the Pluto station, and amplifying its potency, is the second exact square between Uranus and Pluto, which will peak on Tuesday  (10:57pm PDT). This rare alignment continues to be the cosmic headline through 2015, and was first exact on June 24 – a useful reference point for now. What themes or issues were stirred up for you then? What, if anything, has shifted?

uranusRick Tarnas has described Uranus-Pluto as “the liberation of dark forces,” which gives a succinct picture of what’s happening on the world stage, or at least one compelling version of the collective story. On a personal level, we’re challenged to wake up to and free ourselves from our subconscious conditioning, the entrenched emotional patterns that hold us back from accessing and expressing our passion, power and authenticity.

Each New Moon plants a seed for a new direction, a new phase of growth that will develop over the next month. This New Moon’s close proximity with Pluto’s station and square to Uranus suggests that moving forward requires letting go – of an old belief system, emotional attachment, habit, or a commitment that no longer holds energy for you.

In Virgo, this New Moon calls for new beginnings in work, health, self-care routines, daily practices and rituals, and our moment-by-moment state of awareness. Virgo brings the gift of discernment, asking us to identify the elements of everyday life that are nourishing and healing, and those that are detrimental to our well-being.

Our ability to respond (rather than react) to these dramatic outer-planet transits – reflected in the escalating chaos, violence and oppression in some parts of the world – depends on our mental, emotional, physical and spiritual health. The Virgo New Moon presents an opportunity to make adjustments that support our well-being, that help us establish and maintain a high-vibration inner state no matter what is happening “out there.” Virgo is the Priestess, purifying her body, psyche and environment in order to be a clear channel for Spirit.

plutoA few suggestions for navigating the Uranus-Pluto square: Uranus, which rules reversals of all kinds, recommends doing the opposite of your habitual reaction as a strategy for self-liberation. If you typically react to stressful situations by withdrawing and becoming passive, you could experiment with taking bold action. If your default mode is to push forward and “make something happen,” you could try pulling back your energy and waiting to see how the situation will unfold.

Pluto reveals our shadows – those parts of ourselves we have rejected and banished to the basement of the subconscious – and can stir up deep layers of pain, grief and regret. Instead of stewing in judgment of ourselves and others (shadow Virgo), we can practice forgiveness. Some years ago I saw a saying tacked on the wall in a friend’s bathroom, and it’s been coming back into my head lately: “In this moment, I forgive myself for any thought, word or act of separation from myself or others.

Further highlights of the coming month include Fall Equinox on September 22, an explosive Full Moon in Aries on September 29 (coinciding with the Sun’s opposition to Uranus and square to Pluto), and Saturn’s move in Scorpio on October 5. Take advantage of these early days in the new lunar cycle to set new patterns and habits into motion that can support you through the storm.

– Emily Trinkaus

Calling all priestesses! Please join me and my amazing energy healer friend Katie Todd on September 28 for our first Lunar Galactic Activation. We will harness the power of the Full Moon, align with the planets, and embody our Priestess power. All women are welcome, and this is a teleclass, so you can attend this galactic party from the comfort of your home. All the info here.