The Awareness of May

spring goddess disneyby Rodasi

Whether you dig in the dirt, take your shoes off and walk about, head to the woods or lakeshore or even go hug a tree – drink in the newness of life all around us. Finally, here in the north we are seeing some flowers bloom! The excitement of the delicate crocus, the buds on the willow tree, the popping brightness of the daffodil, or the smell of the Earth waking is intoxicating. Take a moment to witness and be present with it. When you do this, you let go of everything and meet yourself in innocence and fascination with Creation.

May brings us new life and we not only get our hands dirty planting our year’s harvest, but we also throw open the windows and doors, let the air and light into the dark corners of our home and too, whether we are willing or not, in our own heart, mind, body and even soul. It is the Spiral Dance in motion: fertility and birth are everywhere in us and around us. The sign of Taurus has us and leads us into the sign of Gemini near month’s end. We are steadfast, diligent, hunkering down to get things done around the house, homestead and preparing for a fun, bountiful and rich summer and fall. We are bouncing off the trees and flying through the open fields with our feet barely on the ground wild with glee that we can finally take some layers off and feel the air and sun on our skin!

Noticing the import of this balance after such a long, dark, cold time of year, allows us to have more fun, be more spontaneous and enjoy our wildness a bit more deeply. (Of course – some of us never have an issue with that!) For those not accustomed to dropping down a little deeper or even sidestepping expected roles we pressure ourselves to play, this can be a very disturbing and uncomfortable experience. Many of these roles and the accompanying rules may inhibit the playful, joyful expressions that this month may be calling forward in us. Just keep in mind, like the plants pushing up out of the earth and the buds emerging from the branches of the trees, so too is new growth moving through you. You can’t stop it. Resistance is futile – and painful.

Try this exercise:

When you are out of doors look around that the ways Spring is manifesting and the Earth is waking around you.

Reflect on how this pressure of birthing newness is present in your subjective life as well.

Stop everything and let you awareness drink in everything you notice without giving any special meaning or attention to any one thing over any other.

If you find this difficult, simply look again to just noticing how Spring is manifesting around you. See if you can sit still and welcome this experience in for whatever feels like almost too long for you…maybe 10 minutes maybe 30, maybe even one hour.

As you return to your walk, your lunch break, your “normal” life – notice how you feel, how alert you are, how you are breathing.

Return to this exercise as often as you like.


Astrologer in Training – Taurus

By Cindy Fadoir

Courtesy of Anna Blanchard

Courtesy of Anna Blanchard

Alas, we take root in the earthy fixed sign of Taurus, smack dab in the middle of the Spring season.  The days are growing longer, the ground warms and flowers take deeper root.  Our astrology training continues with this second sign of the Zodiac year.  Whether your birth chart has any planets in the sign of Taurus, we’ve all felt the essence of this beautiful, Venus ruled sign since the sun moved into Taurus on April 19, 2014.

With the advent of Taurus, we begin the toddler phase of the Zodiac experience.  Though Taurus are patient, stable and slow to anger, they still express a strong need for security, love to be spoiled and once angered, they can be furious as a toddler throwing a tantrum (or a bull seeing red).  They are as stubborn, plodding and headstrong as the Bull that represents the sign.  They like their comforts and possessions as the Venus ruler gives Taurus a love of peace, art, and beauty, especially nature.  And of course, they love their good relationships, but can become jealous and possessive.  Venus ruled Taurus knows the value of money, for security, as well as for acquiring items of value, comfort and the ‘good life’.

The key phrase for Taurus is “I have”, which might be what leads to knowing the value of money but also of being possessive.  Like the symbol of the Bull, the Taurus physical body often displays a large head, short neck, broad shoulders, stocky solid frames and large liquid eyes.  Taurus rules the neck, throat and thyroid.  Taurus love good music and usually have considerable musical aptitude themselves.  They are also good with their hands, especially the earthy pursuits of gardening, woodworking or sculpting.  Other key words for Taurus are persevering, reliable, compassionate, loyal, trustworthy, lazy, slow starter and extravagant.

The Moon relates to how we express our emotions, needs, and what makes us feel secure.  When the moon appears in Taurus, emotional security depends on having and maintaining material possessions, needing creature comforts and stability. This can lead to over indulgence, possessiveness and stubbornness. Guard against using your entrenched values as a self-protective wall. Use this time to slow down and get grounded, finish projects, take care of finances and appreciate nature.

Mercury influences how we think, study and communicate. When Mercury is in Taurus, the energy is expressed as disciplined, a good memory, highly practical mind, determined thought process, stubborn opinions, linear thinking, charming expression and intuitive.  Guard against mental inertia and inflexibility.

Venus represents how we relate, what we value, how we handle finances, and our artistic nature.  When Venus aligns with Taurus, the energy is at home, as Venus rules Taurus.  Venus in Taurus results in being demonstrative, affectionate, being sympathetic, sensual, loyal, and nature loving.  Guard against possessiveness and falling too quickly in lust/love.  For May 2014, Venus will move into Taurus on May 28 and remaining until June 23, when maintaining the status quo is important, as well as creature comforts and saving money.

Mars relates to our physical stamina and sex drive, and how we use energy.  The aggressive, masculine Mars, and Venus ruled Taurus, feminine and steadfast, complement each other as tenacious assertiveness.  The usual, slow to anger Taurus energy can be even more explosive once the slow burn ignites under Mars influence.  Financial and business decisions are made wisely during this time.  Other key words are sensual, passionate, and obstinate.

Jupiter influences how we seek to expand, grow and express our intellect.  When Jupiter appears in Taurus, the energy supports daily spiritual pursuits, generosity, and financial dealings.  This double positive energy results in sympathy, charity and positive thinking.  Guard against extravagance and overeating.

Saturn is an expression of how we deal with authority and cope with serious issues personally, spiritually and societally. Saturn in the sign of Taurus results in increased caution, hard work ethics, reliability and patience.  However, overindulging Taurus does conflict with restrictive, prudent Saturn, resulting in feelings of guilt and greed.  Guard against over-rigid routines and being overly strict with children.

Uranus relates to how we manifest personal individuality and humanitarian freedom, and where we experience change as well as upset.  Uranus in Taurus is expressed as inventive practicality inspiring reforms in the use of financial and earthly resources. Creative expression through music or art rise to surface. Other key words are determined, constructive, charming and resourceful.  Guard against obstinacy slowing the progress of change and against material attachments stifling expression, freedom and spiritual desires.

Neptune represents how we reveal our imagination and intuitive capacity, and where our illusionary blind spots exist. Neptune has not appeared in Taurus for over a hundred years, so it is unlikely that anyone living today has this planet placement in their birth chart.  Neptune will reappear in Taurus in 2038, so, the children of todays’ toddlers may have Neptune in Taurus in their birth charts.  Taurus takes a practical approach to the Neptune intuitive capacities.  The Taurus practicality maybe be overridden by Neptune’s trait of impracticality, so money should be guarded. The next generation may need to get imaginative with how money is used and valued.  Creativity is enhanced, especially in music and art.  They may need to guard against being blind to materialism overriding spirituality.

Pluto influences how we personally transform and regenerate.  Pluto in Taurus is expressed by helping to settle new frontiers after some resistance.  Also, endurance, obsessive need for wealth and exploitation are indicated.  Pluto currently resides in Capricorn and will not transitioning to Taurus until about 2101.  Pluto moved into Capricorn around June 2008, to rattle old systems, which was quickly evident by the stock market crash resulting in a need to transform and rethink how material resources and possessions are handled and valued.

Next month, we will take a tour through the mutable air sign of Gemini, the Twins.  Until then, may the heavens be kind and the sun bring May flowers galore.

Milk Moon Meditation

Rodasi May Milk MoonBy Rodasi

(reference: Full Moon Feast by Jessica Prentice, pgs 70-94 and the Farmer’s Almanac)

The Milk Moon is the full moon in May. This year it is on May 14 (depending upon where you live and what your calendar says). We honor the old ways where people lived closer to the earth and kept dairy animals which ate the nourishing herbs nearby, the wild medicinal weeds – and this magical, healing not only supported their life force, but also those with whom they shared their milk. Milk is a way to connect us to the essence of “Mother” and it is a way for us to feel nurtured and pacified. While there is much controversy surrounding modern milking practices, let’s focus on the positive, upward spiraling and life-giving essence surrounding Milk. We can consider Nandi – the holy cow of India’s Mythic Pantheon. Nandi is a humble, loyal, devotee living in utter (no pun intended) service to humanity. Nandi is symbolic of that aspect of us existing ever-surrendered to perpetual service – to the divine flow of life moving through us, as well as being ever-willing to serve those around us. It is a fearless place to be. It is pure and peaceful place to be. Join me here on a meditative adventure to connect with the essence of Milk, the Mother Goddess energy and your inner Nandi.

(*Please consider reading this meditation into your smart phone voice recording feature and then sitting to do the meditation.)

Sit silently and comfortably. Take 3 slow deep conscious breaths. Let your awareness pass through your head, softening through the eyes, tongue, jaw. The awareness passes through the neck and shoulders – softening here. Down through the torso, the lungs, low back and belly – all relaxed. Notice the parts of your body that are connected to whatever you are sitting or lying on. Notice the gravitational pull holding you and supporting you in this moment. There is nothing for you to do, nowhere for you to go. Give yourself to this moment fully.

Now imagine yourself encased in a glowing, milky-white light – the essence of which is purity and love. You are accepted and held by this energy in every way. It honors you exactly as you are and where you are in this moment. You feel the energy of this light surrounding and penetrating you. It is as though you are floating in buoyant love. The penetration of this energy comes into the heart, the head, the eyes, the throat, the belly, back, tailbone, feet and hands. It fills you with a honey-like essence of magical purification and peace. You feel this resonance in the cells of your body, the blood flowing through your veins, in your muscles, tissues, organs and skin. The understanding that this is the essence of the Mother – the milk-like essence of deep nurturance, unconditional love and purity. There is a flawless sensibility taking over that whispers from a very deep place that you are perfect, whole and holy.

From within the center of your mind’s eye, you find your body dissolved in an endless ocean of this milk-like essence – you are one with the essence. The milk-like consciousness is your consciousness and it is supremely alive, yet absolutely peaceful. There is deep contentment and fulfillment in this experience. From out of this sea of blissful milk-like peace, you see an image form. It is the shape of a woman walking along side a large animal. They come toward you with a brilliant light radiating forth in the most gentle way. The pure essence of sweet acceptance and safety, of love and peace radiate from the goddess and the animal and fill you – this sea of consciousness with delight.

The Divine Mother, in the form your mind creates, comes into a crisper, more clear view. By her side is a milky white cow with big, gentle eyes. A wreath of flowers around his neck catches your attention. It’s fragrance and it’s vibrant color both pull you to your senses. You look down and find you’ve become manifest – god or goddess that you are. Your body, perfect as is, your life, in touch with the absolute perfection of divine flow. The Mother and Nandi, the cow, stand before you smiling.

First, the Mother has a message for you – she asks you if you are ready to be of service to something greater than yourself. Your heart rings out “yes!” She smiles, radiating out deep joy and pride. The Mother removes the flower wreath from Nandi’s neck and places it around your own. The deeply intoxicating fragrance grabs your heart, enlivens your senses, and creates all-around ecstasy in surrender to this Mission of your life’s purpose.

Nandi steps forward and nudges you lovingly. In a telepathic way, he exudes the essence of service letting you know that you have everything you require in the most gentle, humble and peaceful place within you to fulfill your life’s purpose – living in a greater degree of service to the Divine and all of humanity. Your every cell hears this message. You know that there is nothing more to add to yourself or your experience in order to serve perfectly each step of the way from here on out.

The Mother comes forward and walks to you until you are nose to nose. Her eyes are mesmerizing, enchanting, powerfully seductive in the purest way. You lose sense of self again seeing the eyes of the Mother piercing through your own essence, embedding you with an unbreakable stamp of approval for you to proceed with passion, joy, peace and grace living your life in service to Her will. As all sense of Mother and self fades leaving you with the Milky sea of consciousness alone – there is a sense of Nandi’s essence infiltrating your being-ness. The essence of devotional service fills you entirely – the whole ocean of Milk is expressing itself in radiating praise for its existence. This begins to tingle, rippling through the whole, endless sea. It creates bubbles of life here, and there. All bubbles are expressing themselves in radical, wild and intelligent radiance as a part of the whole.

Your sense return to your own body…you are aware of these bliss bubbles moving through your body – your body as a divine temple, as an instrument of service, as a surrendered sea of consciousness. You know yourself as the whole of Creation, yet you sense your own body here. Both are happening all at once. There is no separation. Soak in this for a moment or two.

Return senses to your hands, feet, and head. Notice the aliveness and the fire in your heart. Notice the restful state of alertness. What is this moment like right now? Take your time before moving your body parts and opening your eyes.

The Milky Sea of Love surrounds you always – Rodasi