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Avebury Henge. Detail of photo by Grassrootsgroundswell/Flickr.
The Beltane Full Moon

Dear Friend and Reader:

We are now in the season of The May — what some call Beltane. This is the first cross-quarter day of the solar year, coming about 45 days after the Sun has entered Aries. Sometimes it's called the midspring holiday. Other traditions consider this the beginning of summer. The theme is celebrating the renewal of life, and the rebirth of our forests and gardens and farms, and bodies.

Imagine all those plants all over the landscape, pushing up out of the ground. Imagine all those trees coming into bloom and developing leaves and new branches. That's a lot of energy moving, and Beltane is the time to celebrate it.

Beltane is often counted as the midpoint of Taurus, though this year there are solar events on either side of that marker. Monday, Mercury and the Sun form their exterior conjunction (when Mercury is, from our point of view, directly behind the Sun). Then on Thursday, the Moon opposes the Sun from the sign Scorpio, which is the Full Moon.
Detail of photo by Mark Kent/Flickr.
The spirit of Beltane is celebrating sexuality in the context of being part of life on our Earth — in this time when the flowers are blooming and everyone is out of hibernation and waking up. One tradition was sex in the fields, to ensure an abundant harvest.

When I visited Avebury Henge on the Venus Transit of the Sun in 2004, the Keeper of the Stones, a man named Terry, showed me the vulva stone, a natural feature in one of the massive monoliths.

Here is a passage from my contemporaneous account of the event:
"In front of this row of stones there is a big concrete marker, about four feet high, which he says marks the approximate place where an obelisk once stood. He gestures toward the ring of the Sun Circle toward a huge rectangular stone: the Vulva stone, he says it's called. When the obelisk was there, on Beltane sunrise it would cast a shadow long enough to touch the Vulva stone. (When I take a closer look at it, there is an intricate, beautiful and naturally formed shape of a vulva in this rock about 12 inches long, leading into a little cave.) The obelisk, it turns out, was broken up and made into a house nearby — the fate of many stones, whose places are held by little markers based on a survey from the 1600s. The obelisk was measured while it lay on the ground in pieces at about 24 feet tall. Terry says it was really much higher."
I think we need to look closer at why our society, and so many others, are so distrusting of sex. I have learned in my tantric training that what is bad for women is bad for sex; what is bad for sex is bad for women. This may seem to be an objectionable idea because it associates sex with women, though is that really so off base? Women perform this distinctly sexual miracle and give birth to new life. (Many may not identify with this.)

Anyway, we can heal and get over this if we want. It doesn't happen overnight. It may not happen in one lifetime, though you can make progress in a relatively short phase of time, such as a year, or a season.

This takes focus. Eventually, identifying with the healing process, and later with natural creativity, supplants identifying with the injury. This is essential anywhere along the healing journey.
Photo by Olivia Notter/Flickr.
As most of us know, any illness or debility can have a way of taking over one's identity, and when you master that, and define your identity for yourself, you know you're making progress. And if that is what you want, you'll probably run with it.

One celestial marker that it's time to take up this issue is the forthcoming Venus retrograde, which is part of a series of conjunctions with Vesta.

I have an audio presentation about that here, about six programs down (look for the bright orange and green graphic). I recognize that there are objections to this point of view, and I'm no longer interested. Half the world are the walking wounded where sexuality is concerned, and it's getting in the way of everything: people's personal development and their relationships; our ability to trust existence, and one another; our ability to love the way we want to love.

If for a while we cannot talk about sexuality without talking about sexual healing, I'm down with that. We need an approach to sexuality that facilitates healing, that welcomes it, and where all that darkness has a voice. We need to know where to go for help, and how to help one another. The usual approach of stuffing things down and pretending they don't exist has only led to more needless pain and chaos.

The alternative is celebrating life unfettered, embracing our creativity as pleasure without the nagging, toxic irritation of guilt, and finding much easier ways of relating to one another.

With that, I offer you our 227th Monday Morning weekly horoscope.

With love,
Stunning Avebury Henge aerial photo by MikPeach.
Planet Waves (ISSN 1933-9135) is published each Sunday and Thursday evening in Kingston, New York, Planet Waves, Inc. Core Community membership: $197/year. Editor & Publisher: Eric F. Coppolino. Web Developer: Anatoly Ryzhenko. Associate Editor: Amy Elliott. Assistant Editor: Joshua Halinen. Client Services: Victoria Emory. Illustrator: Lanvi Nguyen. Finance: Andrew Slater. Archivist: Morgan Francis. Technical Assistants: Cate Ryzhenko, Emily Thing. Proofreading: Jessica Keet. Media Consultant: Andrew McLuhan. Music Director: Daniel Sternstein. Bass and Drums: Daniel Grimsland. Additional Music: Zeljko. Additional Research, Writing and Opinions: Samuel Dean, Yuko Katori, Kirsti Melto, Amanda Painter, Cindy Tice Ragusa and Carol van Strum.
The 2020 spring readings are complete!

Despite all the chaos in the world, we'll be delivering them just four days behind schedule — they will be released Monday evening. This is a series of 12 sign readings and an orientation talk, on the level of the best astrological counseling. They are in-depth, vibrant, exciting and deeply personal astrology experiences. Most of all, my work is motivational, uplifting, positive and USEFUL.

This is the last announcement of the $77 for all 12 price (you may also get a separate mailing). That price will be valid until about 5 pm EDT Monday. Once you experience one, you will want to keep going. They will stand up to many rewatchings, and make for fun binge-watching. Best of all, you will learn basic astrology principles you can apply to your own life even if you're not an astrologer. I teach the basics and how to think astrologically, by example.

Upon publication they will go to $99 for all 12; and when we introduce individual signs, they will be $44 for the first and $22 for each additional. So basically, $77 is 12 for the price of two.

Many times I have quoted Khenpo Karthar Rinpoche: "We do indeed live in an age of decadence, but the dharma is not decadent. The dharma is the same as it always has been." We need this now more than ever.

Despite the challenges of our time, you can focus on your purpose, which is related to the World Purpose. You can step into your calling as one who came to our planet to make a positive difference. This is integral to your healing path, your personal mission and the necessities of the world. In this new video reading, about work and relationships, we will use the astrological markers of our moment to point the way, and clear the way. You may pre-order all 12 signs here.
Monthly Horoscopes and Publishing Schedule Notes

Your extended monthly horoscope for May was published on Saturday, April 25. We published your extended monthly horoscope for April on Saturday, March 28. Please note: we normally publish the extended monthly horoscope after the Sun has entered a new sign.
Planet Waves
Monday Morning Horoscope #227 for May 4, 2020 | By Eric Francis Coppolino
Aries (March 20-April 19) — You may feel like you're in a dangerous spot, though you don't understand why. This feeling might increase over the next few days. One thing to be cautious of is taking on responsibilities that are not really your own, or putting yourself in the place where you could be held accountable, incorrectly. If someone actually holds responsibility for something, allow them to have it. That does not mean counting yourself out of the flow of information, or in any way dimming your awareness. Just know which shoes it's your place to fill, and be glad you're not a monarch. It's a difficult job and you can never really get it right. Yet there are many ways you can help; you have considerable talent and assets to offer any situation where you identify they may be helpful or even valuable. Be aware that your spiritual guidance and protection are with you. You can, if you want, have your bearings — or rather, consciously keep your sense of direction and pay attention to which way you're headed. Get your full Aries reading by Eric here.

The Journey of You and Chiron | A New Reading by Eric Francis

Anyone who has encountered it is curious about Chiron. Planet Waves provides one of the few dependable online sources of information on this unusual planet. For the 10th anniversary Astrology Studio reading, I will be covering Chiron in Aries — a momentous event for all those born under this sign, and of high interest to everyone else. Get instant access to this reading here.

Taurus (April 19-May 20) — Though the economy and society may be in tatters, keep working for the kind of success you want. You need a strategy, and its first element needs to be a clear and concise goal, or at least a point of arrival from which you can explore. Everything — tapping your vitality, your momentum, your knowledge, your reputation — involves delineating a very basic series of steps you will likely take to get to another place. I mean general steps, such as, "I want to be involved in independent cinema, which I hear is happening in [city where you know it's going on], so I will go there and stay for two months." Or, "I want to be in green investment, so I will meet people in this profession." How you actually effect that goal will change from day to day, and you would be wise to leave plenty of space and time for the unexpected to manifest. At the moment, I suggest you benefit from current aspects and refine your communication style. Speak and write to be understood, and respectful, and respected. Your words matter. Get your full Taurus reading by Eric here.

Photo by Lanvi Nguyen.
You can now get instant access to your 2020-21 Taurus Astrology Studio here for just $44. This reading focuses on a professional breakthrough toward the end of the year, and preparing you for this development. Venus retrograde in the spring is preparation. Mars retrograde in the autumn is preparation.

Ultimately this is a spiritual development, yet in reality we are talking about aligning your purpose with action, with a calling, and with an opportunity. Elements of the reading go out to a series of power steps in 2021. Read more.

Gemini (May 20-June 21) — As your twin soul Bob Dylan wrote, you give up something for everything you gain. Therefore, make a list of what you want to divest yourself of, or would be willing to. Know what you don't want, what you don't need, and what is not serving you. When it comes time to give things up, that's the place to start your selection process. This can include problems you don't need or want, which takes away most of the power they seem to hold over you. At other times you will find the thing asked of you only seems like something you were attached to, and then turns out to be a relief when it's gone. In all things, be conscious of the exchange process. Be aware that there are many sides to an issue or a situation, and to every specific condition of your life. Pay special attention to those places where something you think does not work for you serves a purpose, which keeps you attached to it. This calls for true maturity. Get your full Gemini reading by Eric here.

Your 2020-21 Gemini Astrology Studio, The Sacred Space of Self, is now available for pre-order at just $33. The reading covers Venus retrograde in your sign, Vesta in your sign, Saturn in Aquarius, and the momentous astrology at the end of the year. Get the best price by pre-ordering today. Thank you for your business and your trust.

Cancer (June 21-July 22) — Events this week will provide you with guidance and a bit of prescience associated with a solar eclipse in your birth sign in about six weeks. There is an alignment of Mercury and the Sun that points directly to the June 21 eclipse. This involves your public or most visible role in society, and the place where you seek your fulfillment through tangible connections to others. For you, these are related, especially under our current astrology and cultural conditions. Notice what develops, emerges, or speaks to you Monday (in particular) and consider its true nature. This includes the ideas you may have, the things you may do, and also what emerges spontaneously. You've been seeing this happen here and there, and you've probably figured out that your mode of involvement is gaining momentum, growing roots and sprouting branches and leaves. Let this process develop naturally. Get your full Cancer reading by Eric here.

Leo (July 22-Aug. 23) — Stay focused on your plan, and take each necessary step to get there. Work closely with partners and those who hold any authority in your life, and make it happen. Some of the most important strategy points may come from others, and you will need to depend on them to hold some structure for you, while you take care of more important personal matters. This will be an exercise in both trust and coordination. Keep your plans close to those who are directly involved. Take an approach that may seem a bit like the military — clear delegation of duties, clear accountability, and a genuine sense of order and organization. One or two people will be instrumental in making this happen, whom you will know from their clear thinking and sense of balance and fairness. Make sure the right things happen at the right time, as best you can, which mainly means following the order of operations. Get your full Leo reading by Eric here.

Virgo (Aug. 23-Sep. 22) — There is no rush to make a decision, especially if you're wondering "what to do with the rest of your life." That's a tall order, and you might want to shorten it a bit. You certainly are in a space of questioning not just what to do next, but why. Your motive and motivation for activity is the greater question. What actually moves and inspires you? When you see someone whose accomplishments you admire, do you understand why you feel that way? Meantime, you are probably having ideas for what is possible, and thoughts of wanting to reinvent yourself. You don't need to rush, though it would be helpful if you experimented. That means not just with activity but with your underlying need to express yourself, to change your environment, or to redesign some facet of the world you live in. I suggest you explore the possibilities actively, through direct experience, reading, and speaking with others about what they do and why. Get your full Virgo reading by Eric here.

Libra (Sep. 22-Oct. 23) — One thing after another seems to shake your confidence and security, and you keep getting back up and keepin' on. This week's astrology highlights questions about where you get your resources, how you use them, how you share them, and how to sustain and develop what works rather than what does not. This will be your most meaningful distinction. The thing you want to do more of is what is already succeeding. Do less or none of what is not serving a purpose, nor feeding you in some way. This is mostly a practical matter, though learning how to make the distinction of "works" versus "does not work" is one that can never be spoken about enough. You can replace all the things in the second category with new experiences (from which frustration invariably deflects). Venus retrograde between May 13 and June 25 will be a source of many questions on the deeper meaning of your existence. And in those matters as well, the discussion will come down to what works and what does not. Get your full Libra reading by Eric here.

Scorpio (Oct. 23-Nov. 22) — Thursday's Full Moon in your birth sign may test your limits on a relationship, though you want to encourage that. Whatever ways you may feel pushed are also inviting you to come out of your shell and step into your power and authority. Your life at this moment is one long exploration of what it means to be resolutely yourself rather than who others would have you be. Then as you master that, you will need to get to the place where you can still hold your own in the presence of any social pressure not to. This is perhaps subtle, and being susceptible to so much external influence does not fit your self-image. Yet it would help to think of it not as external influence, but rather what was programmed into you as self-control for the convenience of others. To outgrow this requires bona fide self-development. Study the dynamics of your early family life to understand the kinds of pressures you were subjected to. Get your full Scorpio reading by Eric here.

Sagittarius (Nov. 22-Dec. 22) — Your ideas about life strategy can only apply to you, not to others. This is a leap because of the extent to which you may identify with a certain relationship. The relationship will proceed as it does, and though it involves you, your plans must be about yourself alone. When you can do that, you will have something tangible and interesting to exchange with others. This defies the idea that "others give me a purpose," which is the thing you want to give yourself a break from. They may seem to, though that does not really get you to the level of your actual meaning, motivation and definition. Yet there are forces at work saying it's time for the real thing. You know you're changing, and that your inner movements will require you to make outer ones. If a relationship is involved, my thought here is that the relationship must be one thing, and you must be another. Don't mix up the two. You exist independently of it, which is what makes it a relationship at all. Get your full Sagittarius reading by Eric here.

Capricorn (Dec. 22-Jan. 20) — The destructive expressions of our current astrological era are mostly behind you, if you bring yourself into the constructive phase. This must be a conscious act, in the spirit of taking an inventory of what you've learned. Also, you might take an inventory of what the destructive phase (which peaked in January and February) has removed, dismantled, or stopped. You cannot count everything as a loss. You know that, too: while some developments may have seemed inconvenient, that was more about your own resistance to change. Now, the planetary picture is calling on you to be more conscious about how you make changes in your life: in other words, making them for yourself, rather than having them made for you. This will come to the forefront of one particular relationship as the June 21 solstice eclipse approaches. Figure out where you stand with this relationship, and if you've already done that, then act according to your knowledge. Get your full Capricorn reading by Eric here.

Aquarius (Jan. 20-Feb. 19) — The creative life can be lonesome, and anyone devoted to developing their art (or their invention, or deep personal commitment) may need to proceed for years without any social benefits. Yet that is often what it takes to make progress on, well, anything genuinely demanding of your focus. There would appear to be such a thing in your life now, or you have something available to focus on that will benefit you. Take the opportunity, therefore, to keep your energy and thoughts focused inwardly — or continue to do so if this is the track you've been on. The truth you arrive at must be your own. You can engage the companionship of those who are committed to helping you go in your own direction. That means people with no special agenda for you, and who you are certain support who you are, and who you are becoming. If they treat you that way, regard it as a sign of affirmation and love. Get your full Aquarius reading by Eric here.

Pisces (Feb. 19-March 20) — This week's Full Moon in Scorpio is, among other things, a reminder of how integral your sexuality is to your spiritual path. Others may make a point of evading, eluding or denying this, or maybe they have not figured it out. It would seem to be a radical idea, though it's not really. As evidence I offer the obsession that so many religions have with dissing, dismissing and destroying sexuality and, in particular, that of women. Have you ever wondered what that's about? I'll offer a clue. If indeed you can find your way to the core of your creative force (what religion calls "god"), it would not help the cause (of religion) if people discovered this for themselves. The guilt trip of religion is all about not discovering the one thing that would lead you to not need religion; the aspect of your humanity that would put you in contact with your creative, self-creative and healing source. This week is a glorious time to celebrate yourself, and if you share yourself, to do so in the spirit of nature, love and abundance. Get your full Pisces reading by Eric here.

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