The Capricorn Moon and an Altar to Ceres

Dear Friend and Reader:

I STARTED AN article yesterday called “Islands of the Future,” planned for today, developing the ideas of a prior piece based on the Starseed Transmissions, “A Psychological Process.” It turned out to be a little more ambitious than I anticipated, so I’m giving it some more time and letting the ideas percolate.

Solstice Full Moon by Anthony Ayiomamitis.

Thursday, on the eve of the Capricorn Full Moon, I had a light client day, just two of you. But I noticed that both had a Capricorn Moon. That is an interesting synchronicity, but you notice this when you do astrology: the chart themes come in clusters. They can be quite specific: even a single degree of the zodiac can arrive in bunches (lately I’ve been seeing a lot of 22+ Virgo).

My second client was working with a family situation. In her intake letter, she gave me the data of a lot of relatives, though I’m always cautious about bringing in the charts of third parties, and I do it very rarely. Just about everything you need to know about a client’s family you can find out from their own natal chart, and I worked with her for a while just keeping the focus on her own astrology and her own role in the situation, particularly why she identified so strongly with her children. She also happened to have Ceres (a planet involving motherhood) in the first degree of Capricorn, so it’s taking a transit from Pluto this year.

Finally, she convinced me to cast her granddaughter’s chart; and as it turned out, the little tyke had a Capricorn Moon. So far every natal chart I had seen on one day had a Capricorn Moon, with the Moon currently in that sign. She then convinced me to check her daughter’s chart, who had early Capricorn close to the 7th house, and her Moon was in Taurus (another Earth sign). Then her daughter’s estranged husband turned out to have his Moon in Capricorn. She had made up his birth time and ended up with the exact moment of the Capricorn Full Moon of 1977, and Capricorn rising.

I take a special interest in the Capricorn Moon. My mother, several significant lovers, a few of my closest friends and two of my very favorite artists have this Moon placement. It always seems to be following me around, and it was certainly showing up with emphasis and a bit of cosmic humor Thursday. It is an interesting, soulful and often difficult Moon to have, and to live with. Its natives often seem to go through undue suffering, and about half the time that suffering engenders not compassion but rather a detached quality, which is often about detaching from one’s own feelings and needs.

The Cap Moon has an astonishing power to compartmentalize; it can keep many different situations going in life, but have them all in separate rooms, and sometimes whoever is stashed in one of those rooms can be forgotten for a while, anywhere from a few weeks to a few years to a couple of decades. Well, maybe not forgotten, but stashed away, out of the way. If you want to have an affair with someone who can keep things both secret and in perspective, this aspect of the Cap Moon’s nature makes them a good choice. Here is an article that gives an overview of this often maligned and misunderstood placement.

Anyway, my client was in the position of matriarch and caregiver for her family in transition out of crisis. At the end of 75 minutes work, I was faced with a question: what do a bunch of Capricorn Moon people need? Well, they need caring and nourishment. They need warmth, and something in my client’s chart told me that warmth needed to come specifically from food. That was indicated by her transit of Pluto to Ceres in the 6th house. The 6th says healing and the signs and planets involved tell you what, and in what style. Ceres says food. It’s also about mothers and daughters, and the fine art of healthy compromise.


So I suggested that she emphasize food as Thing One in her family’s healing process. She responded and said that usually, she was not interested. She added that this related to how when she was a kid, mealtime was also punishment time, from her father. This created a history of mingling punishment with food, thus corrupting food for her. This is an interesting picture of the Moon in Capricorn (often associated with guilt and a sense of emotional scarcity).

I suggested that she turn the kitchen table into an altar. I proposed that she go on the Internet and find a representation of Demeter or Ceres (the Greek or Roman versions, respectively), and put that on the table. I suggested that two more objects would complete the space: a fruit bowl with fresh, washed fruit; and a candle. And by the power vested in me as an astrologer, I proposed suspending all other activity at the kitchen table except for food preparation and eating.

Meals and food would need to become the central metaphor for healing. I suggested that she clean up the family’s diet (remove sugar, trans fats, processed foods and so on) and make sure that at every meal there was something special for everyone (not hard, she was just cooking for three).

This would all be difficult, she said. She had been badly traumatized around food. Yet all the charts and the family story indicated that what everyone needed was a healing process in this aspect of life; that a safe space be created for nourishment; and that the message of love be conveyed with the food they were eating. She said she would do her best, and I believed her.

A day in the life of an astrologer.

In my almost daily missive the past few days, I’ve been covering the price of oil. We live in a society where everything is connected to or the result of oil. If I print a picture, that uses oil; if I make dinner that uses oil many times over. If I sit and write, my computer is made of the stuff, and powered by it. It is the ultimate form of nourishment because lots of our food is made of petrol (it’s ploughed into the ground as fertilizer and oil is used to harvest the food), then all food is transported with oil unless it starts in your backyard. Petroleum is at the core of what we think of as “the structure of our society,” and Pluto in Capricorn suggests strongly that some changes are coming to that structure.

In a year, the price of gasoline and diesel have nearly doubled. That’s a big jump in the price of the one commodity involved with nearly everything on Earth. We don’t quite see that the oil companies, and the executive branch (consisting largely of oil executives) have our country and indeed our world by the balls.

Earlier this week, our local congressman, Maurice Hinchey, held a news conference across the street from my studio. He pointed out that the United States military has in recent years increased its use of energy by 50%, and that even in 2004 it consumed as much energy as the entire nation of Greece. This drives up the price. You may consume less petrol or trade for a smaller car to save fuel and money, but many families are wondering how they’re going to heat their houses this winter with home heating oil costing $5 a gallon.

Then midweek, I learned something that just stunned me. It came in the form of a letter from airline CEOs, on the subject of petroleum commodities trading. That is, people who buy and sell petroleum and gamble on what the price is going to do. Here is the text of the letter, with the introduction in italics below.

Something to think about on this Capricorn Full Moon.

Yours & truly,

Eric Francis




Weekly Horoscope for Friday, July 18, 2008, #723 – By ERIC FRANCIS

Aries (March 20-April 19)
Look around and you will see the benefits that have come to you from doing so much legwork, and work in general, the past year or more. It has not all been for nothing, though that feeling often pervades any effort that is slow, and which therefore requires long-term commitment. You can take the moment to enjoy the feeling of success, as well as a taste of its actual benefits. There is more where that came from, but what you must bear in mind is that the reward for a job well done is often another job to do, and these jobs are not often easy. What you are looking for is specifically a sense of mutual benefit: if something just benefits you, forget it. If it just benefits others at your expense, forget it. Find the place where your work creates a cycle of reward for both yourself and the people around you. If we can all do this, we can save the world and have a lot of fun.

Taurus (April 19-May 20)
You are not someone who is particularly good at seeing wide, expansive possibilities. You may think you are, but then when you get an actual glimpse over your teacup walls, you see how big the world really is. The current Full Moon in Capricorn will point you toward your potential, and allow you a moment of feeling that it’s actually real. You may be guided toward potential involving something much larger than yourself, or that seems improbable.Let the events of this week serve as a testimony to the truth that we are most often limited by what we believe is impossible; we remove our limitations by shifting our belief in what is possible. I recognize that this can be a source of great frustration: how do we change a belief? Here is a clue: what is necessary more often seems possible than anything else. Therefore, if something is necessary, you can probably do it.

Gemini (May 20-June 21)
When you’re sorting your life, your mind, your closets or your values, bear in mind one factor: some things nourish you and some things do not. Some things you do nourish others, while certain other things you do deplete them. Unfortunately, we humans tend to have the greatest attachments to the things that deplete us — certain foods, people and emotional habits that do nothing but strip our natural enzymes away. You know that one of the things you need the most is balance. The teacup ride of the spring informed you of that, and you run some risk of that whole experience fading into the foggy mists of memory if you don’t make a conscious point of remembering what you learned. The first step to balance is taking care of yourself. This is particularly true if you are someone who must consistently take care of others.

Cancer (June 21-July 22)
This week’s Full Moon in your opposite sign Capricorn should shake loose some energy, particularly emotional energy. You are a passionate person, and too often you look at the world and get back a hollow gaze. There are those days you are tempted to walk around with a stethoscope and make sure the people walking on the street actually have a pulse. This should not be one of those weeks, and those who have defined themselves in your life as being stagnant may surprise you with a reversal of their basic position. Mercury currently in your sign suggests that you will welcome the focus and attention, but still may find it to be a bit too much. The word of the week is therefore compromise. Enough is enough; too much is too much; nobody wants to live in a flood, or on dry, parched land.

Leo (July 22-Aug. 23)
You possess the missing answer to an issue at work; you need to devote yourself to it, and to persist until you have a breakthrough. At this time, I don’t suggest you count on others, or assume it’s going to get done on its own — nothing ever does. What you can do is set the example for others to actually get something done rather than go through the motions. The lesson for everyone is that brilliant ideas are not enough. They are a good start, but ultimately to put a concept into action or manifest it into reality, we have to change; we literally must reconstruct some portion of our mind, our behavior or our feelings to allow for whatever new is on its way in. Most of where we allow it is into ourselves — a process that will have exponentially increasing meaning as the next two weeks (and a total eclipse in Leo) approach.

Virgo (Aug. 23-Sep. 22)
Anyone who offers themselves in service will sooner or later, at one point or another, feel like a mother with three children vying for her breasts. I suggest you make peace with the concept of ‘being used’. We tend to cast this idea only in the negative. That, to me, suggests some confusion over why we incarnate in the first place. Think of it this way. If everyone showed up on the planet strictly for their own sake, there would be a state of constant anarchy. Nobody would even be able to raise an army; everyone would be too self-absorbed. Some of us come here to serve, and some of us will not be happy until we set out to do our appointed service. Yours indeed involves taking care of people, but lately in a way that is more public than private. At the least, this is the time to be known for what you do.

Libra (Sep. 22-Oct. 23)
There are many ways that your existence defies what we think of as reality. I’ll give you three. Our culture is obsessed with making things ugly. You have an eye for little other than beauty. Our society persistently drives itself and everyone else to various states of imbalance; you are devoted to maintaining equilibrium. There are few people from whom we can expect a fair deal, and you are one of them. You also take the idea of ambition and turn it upside-down. Most of our worldly colleagues are busy trying to get ahead, and if a few crumbs or pennies rain down on the unfortunate masses, it’s not such a bad thing. For you, true accomplishment is something you do on the inside, and which benefits people as a direct result. This is a good definition of integrity, and a reasonable portrait of your life right now.

 (Oct. 23-Nov. 22)
These days may find you deeply emotional, perhaps teary eyed, perhaps finally in a place where you can express your grief and your anger at a long-standing condition in your life. Let the words and the tears flow; let your feelings flow; take the opportunity to be articulate with yourself and to others about what truly matters to you. This is less a burden on them than it is a relief from one. Remember that there is only so far that applying brainpower to your life can go. Any situation or condition that is truly worked out, is resolved on many levels. Sometimes it happens one layer at a time, and sometimes you can move through several at once. At the moment, you have a diversity of levels you can work on, but they all have one thing in common — the truth of who you are: a truth that was never more obvious.

Sagittarius (Nov. 22-Dec. 22)
In your ongoing quest for the right way to make the right living, I suggest that every dollar, pound or euro you earn be in full alignment with your highest vision for yourself. If it’s not, I suggest you notice consciously, and notice how you feel. You may think that money is money no matter where it comes from, but that’s not true. Money created from any form of deception or manipulation is not in alignment with your karma. In Western society, that covers a lot of ground. I suggest you be equally vigilant about where you spend your resources, and what you spend them on. It is notoriously easy to ignore this idea, but there are few things we can do that are more important now; and few things on your current agenda that mean more. Beyond a certain point, money seems to take on a distinctly amoral quality. It is considered it’s own self-affirming virtue, no matter what the consequences. If you believe that, you may want to ask yourself why.

Capricorn (Dec. 22-Jan. 20)
This week’s Full Moon in your sign is designed to break you free from stuck emotional patterns that you have come to take for granted. I suggest you take the opportunity to unlock your inner doors of compartmentalization. You’re good at keeping them shut, and while it serves many temporary expedients (such as subverting your conscience, or allowing you to maintain a double standard), it’s not healthy and it does not support your intimate relationships. You could say that denial and truth have nothing in common; I would say they have everything in common, because neither could exist without the other. In any event, I suggest you look for your keys, start turning the locks, letting every part of your brain know what every other part is up to. That translates to letting every person in your life know what you are up to, including your involvements with others. Rest assured: there will be consequences either way. If you make the moves, and the decisions, you’ll like those consequences a heck of a lot more.

Aquarius (Jan. 20-Feb. 19)
You know there is a lot you don’t know about yourself, and usually this doesn’t faze you. Now you’re about to make some surprising discoveries, and to unfold some of the hidden dimensions of your psyche that you may not have known existed. In astrology, Aquarius is variously known as one of the most equitable signs, and as one of the most controlling. This power-focused aspect of your nature probably confuses you, as does your tendency to become rigid at certain key times when compromise is called for. Now you can get a look at what is going on in those inner corridors of power. You can see the way your parents imprinted you with their fears and their old-fashioned worldview, clearly enough to do something about it. Don’t worry, even after you revolt against so many dusty old ideas that have nothing to do with who and what you are, you will still have enough old-fashioned respect for tradition to hold your life in order.

Pisces (Feb. 19-March 20)
This week’s Full Moon lights up one of the most public angles of your solar chart, and that happens to be one where you struggle for visibility much of the time. While you have a reputation for being an “innovator” and for being “different” (not always a compliment) what many people fail to recognize is the pragmatic value of what you do. Hey, maybe you even miss that point. Anyway, a magnificent lunation across the most dynamic axis of your chart is likely to help you get some of the recognition you deserve. In Capricorn style, it may have been long in coming and it may not quite seem to have the glare of Hollywood, but what you want — and what you are getting — is a reputation for being solidly consistent, dependable and grounded. If you follow your philosophy of life and go for quality rather than quantity, you’re likely to get both.

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