The Strawberry Moon, June 2020

The Full Strawberry Moon and what it means for you this month

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What is astrology and why do astrologers study the Moon?

Humans have been studying the Moon since at least 25 000 years ago. This is only natural. It is the closest celestial body to Earth, exerting visible effects on the tides, and on every living thing that depends for its way of living on the behaviour of the tides, and possibly a whole lot more besides, though this is debated, eg; crop growth, hormonal cycles and moods.

‘Astrology’ comes from Greek and means ‘the study of the stars.’

It’s about the search for meaning on earth as seen mirrored in the sky, seeking to understand human behaviour through the symbolic influence of planets and other celestial objects, Luna, our Moon being the closest.

Astrology began as humanity made conscious attempts to measure, record, and predict seasonal changes by paying attention to astronomical cycles. They did this largely for practical planning purposes, for example:

  • When would the wild cattle- the aurochs migrate – and they could organise a hunt?
  • When would the salmon or other fishes spawn?

Early evidence of sky-monitoring appears as markings on bones and cave walls in the Neolithic period 25,000 years ago, recording the movements of the sun, and the moon and its influence upon tides and rivers. This timekeeping led to the creation of the first written calendars in the Bronze Age 3,300 – 1200 BC by the Sumerians in the ancient Near East.

Symbolically, because it has no light of its own, The Moon represents our shadowy side, our dreams, hidden health, and the impulses that drive our behaviour whether or not we are consciously aware of them.

The Headlines

June 05, 2020          Full Moon in Sagittarius (Lunar eclipse)
June 13, 2020            Last Quarter Moon (Waning)
June 21, 2020            New Moon in Cancer (annular solar eclipse)
June 29, 2020            First Quarter Moon (Waxing)

The Full Moon occurs when the Moon is on the opposite of the Earth from the Sun on the same celestial longitude and we can see the entire illuminated portion of the Moon.

The New Moon is the first/last lunar phase when the Moon is located between the Earth and the Sun and the moon is largely invisible, hidden in the sun’s glare.

A Full Moon in Sagittarius happens in late May/early June when the lunar sky path is crossing the ninth sector of the zodiac – 240-270 degrees, containing the constellation of Sagittarius, and the sun moves into the opposite zodiac sector of Gemini. The Full moon of June 2019 was also in Sagittarius.

A New Moon in Cancer happens in late June- July when the Sun is also in the zodiac sign of Cancer.

What do the moon phases mean for you and me, symbolically?

In general terms, folklore suggests that:-

A waxing Moon building up to the Full Moon is the optimum time to grow, build, add to, make or get something. It is all about bringing something new in, or bringing something to completion or fruition. Some may perform magical summoning rituals.

A Full Moon is the optimum time to take stock and evaluate, or to gather, collect, harvest or cash in on something.

A waning Moon is the optimum time for ending something, clearing out what’s no longer wanted or needed, including unhelpful or unhealthy habits. It may mean releasing something, or even getting rid of something (someone.) Some may perform magical banishing or protection rituals.

A New Moon is the optimum time to make a decision, and start from scratch,

What is the Full Strawberry Moon?

This is strawberry harvesting time in the northern hemisphere, which before modern agriculture methods was only a very short season. These full Moon names were used during Native American and Colonial times to help track the seasons—they came from the Algonquin tribes who lived in the same areas as the Colonists.

In Europe we have traditionally nicknamed this moon the Honey Moon…first crops of honey, and gifts of honey were presented to newly-wed couples…hence the term honeymoon.

The month of June is the most popular month for weddings, and it is no coincidence that it gets its name from the classical goddess of marriage, Juno (also called Hera in Greek mythology.)

Photo by Asad Photo Maldives on Pexels.com

A strawberry moon sounds very nice indeed. But what about this one?

Sadly, probably not this time, at least not in public life in the US, and to a superficially lesser extent in the UK, with major talks coming up with the EU. And now we are days away from the lunar eclipse, when an energy peak of this kind may theoretically be expected.

Full Moon in Sagittarius

The major Arcana Tarot card associated with the zodiac sign of Sagittarius is Temperance; traditional meanings: healing, balance, timing, waiting, diplomacy, moderation

The Rider-Waite Tarot

The court card associated with Sagittarius is the Knight of Wands: traditional meanings: energy, initiative, adventures, new ventures in study, marketing, the media, travel, writing, performing arts, disruption, gossip and fighting.

What does this mean for me and you?

Temperance is generally a deeply optimistic card, just as Sagittarius is an upbeat and optimistic sign of the zodiac, full of  fun and ‘can do’ energy,’ if somewhat impulsive on occasion. We can get a lot done and have a few laughs.

That’s the brighter side of this June full moon.  

BUT this will be a lunar eclipse, a Gemini-Sagittarius eclipse, plus, the planets Mars and Venus go retrograde this month, and Mercury went retrograde last month, and this all translates as volatile, potentially quarrelsome or even warlike energy. There is frustration here. Sagittarius is the desire for travel, and right now, that’s an urge that can’t be satisfied for a lot of people who would normally be making travel plans by now, or looking forward to summer travel. This is an eclipse with a focus on discontent.

Globally and historically, astrologers have correlated these sorts of planetary combinations with events of war, and with earthquakes.

At home there could be an unusual degree of tension, or sudden eruptions of anger.

Take a deep breath and count to ten before starting or responding to any arguments. A lot of people are a little out of sorts.Some are way, way out of sorts.

Likewise, we could overdo things around this Full Moon, eating or drinking. We could even overdo the exercise if we’re not careful, and hurt ourselves.

Do your own thing but ‘gently does it.’

Speaking of which, will there be a second wave of #Covid19 in the wake of starting the release of the lock-down? Logically, that would seem almost inevitable as the price of returning to normal, although my cards have been indicating small spikes of increased infections rather than a second wave as such, between today and 21 June, as we are trundling along just below the critical R rate of 1.

If we do have to return to lock-down in the UK because of lack of proper self management, well, Cancer is the card of staying at home…and the card of the New Moon 21 June is in Cancer. This date or thereabouts looks like the next turning point one way and another.

The world is not a designated safe space for any single living creature. Safety is the greatest illusion of all in the modern bubble. There is only ever risk mitigation, and if we really want freedom, and not just to talk about it, we must be prepared to manage it for ourselves. The alternative is to have it managed for us, with or without our consent, and even then, regardless of what we think about that prospect, it is still no guarantee of safety.

So then.

Will the UK have to go back into strict lockdown?

Line of Five Reading: King of Hearts (yes)- 5 Spades (no)- 7 Clubs (no)– 3 Clubs (no)- Queen Diamonds (yes)

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The crux card here is the 7 of Clubs, the work card, a difficult, erratic card of holding one’s own, the need for the nation to go back to work, and also a card of moral courage in the face of heated opposition, and even, in modern parlance ‘trolls’ and ‘haters’.

A return to the original terms of lock-down looks like a 2/5 chance. So, definitely possible. We wish it was a 0/5 or a 1/5. But it’s not a 4/5 or 5/5, so not looking highly probable. There might be a close call as the R rate pushes up to 1 again, or it may even rise higher, in which case it may be sufficiently briefly, that we only just escape a further lock-down.

Those who are at a statistically low risk, they need to think more about the way they move around, and use extra careful public hygiene. Those at a statistically high risk know who they are, and need to keep their guard up, and be careful where they go, and when.

Napoleon may not have meant it as a compliment when he said we were a nation of shopkeepers, but still, we need to keep it that way. The alternatives are too bleak to contemplate.

Small is beautiful, and so is local.

New Moon in Cancer

The Chariot from The Gilded Tarot, Ciro Marchetti

The major Arcana Tarot card associated with Cancer is The Chariot: traditional meanings, victory, progress, ambition, determination, self control, teamwork, but also lack of self control, waging war, riots, and disruption.

The Chariot itself is the shell – the carapace of the Crab. Cancer may be seen as gentle, but it is also a hunter. Children must be provided for.

The court card is The Queen of Cups; motherhood, children, home and family, the arts. Here it refers to homeschooling too. This is in general a gentle, reflective card. 

However, this new moon will be a lunar eclipse, and Venus, retrograde during this new moon, is famous as the classical goddess of love and beauty but is also the hottest planet, hotter even than Mercury. Mars is famous as the god and planet of warlike energy. Homeschooling might struggle somewhat today, parents and children tired and fractious. Astrologically this influence eases after 25 June when Venus goes stationary, and things flow more calmly.

What does this mean for me and you?

Where the Full Moon in general brings a peak or a re-boosting of energy and initiative, the New Moon in general represents a time of greater introspection and a pause for reflection. This seems especially the case during this New Moon.

This annular solar eclipse suggests this may not be business as usual in New Moon terms. There could be offers or surprises, and these seem most likely close to home; new developments, perhaps news of a baby on the way, or an unexpected call from a relative or old friend you haven’t spoken with in a long while.

The full moon this year additionally falls on a day designated Father’s Day in the UK. The ultimate Tarot card of fathers and fatherhood is the Emperor card.

This is also the card of government, Law and Order and the Army, whose members and officers are citizens too, and whose ultimate duty is to protect the people of their nation states, and to protect and promote their collective interests, in whichever country, under whatever government.

These are all coming in for exceptionally heavy stick at present, struggling in their different ways with not only arenas of political difficulty, but a pandemic of unproven origin and peculiar aetiology. Covid19 is now suspected to be a vascular disease as opposed to a strictly respiratory disease; a veritable viral Frankenstein.

Failures and frailties notwithstanding, I will still convey my respectful greetings to all that is the very best in The Emperor as embodied in the Tarot.

Read more about The Emperor here

We’re all on the road together, you and me.

The Humming from Enya

Until next time 🙂

No Doom Today

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We have always had doom-mongers. We will always have them. Ahhh, shaddapp!!!

Someone give them a nice cuppa and a biscuit. We’ve all had enough doom-mongering.

Mind you, if only the Trojans had listened to Cassandra….

But doom is just another word for destiny or fate. Doom is destiny in a bad mood, having a bad hair day. And then the eternal chestnut is, can destiny be changed? Is it mutable?

The Fates of Greek Mythology were three weaving goddesses who assigned individual destinies at birth. Their names were Clotho who chose the yarn (the Spinner), Lachesis who allowed the length (the Allotter -and there’s a deadly venomous snake of the same name; a bushmaster if memory serves) and Atropos who cut the thread (the Inflexible).

Once they had decreed your fate even Zeus couldn’t do a thing about it.

The Fates of Norse mythology, the three Nornir lived at the well in Asgard (home of the Gods and Goddesses). Their names were Urd ‘What Once Was’, Verdandi ‘What Is Coming into Being’ and Skuld, ‘What Shall Be.’

They spent their time at the foot of the giant ash Yggdrasil the Tree of Life, the great World Tree, weaving the threads of fate of every living being into a web. They were the alarm clock for the gods, placing a rooster at the top of Yggdrasil to wake them up every morning, ready or not. Wakey WAKEYYYYY!

One pictures Odin, snorting, startled awake after a heavy night in the mead hall.

And then they would fetch water from Urd’s well, and give Yggdrasil a good watering to keep it green and healthy.

The Vikings believed the Norns were nearby whenever a  child was born. Women who had just given birth were fed a bowl of porridge,’Norn porridge’. The mothers would eat it on their behalf and hopefully, this vicarious treat would go down – well, a treat, and in return the Norns would be well-disposed, dishing out good health for the mother and the child.

But – significantly, the Norns, unlike the Fates, could be bargained with now and then to change ordained outcomes.

These days we may wonder about Fate, but in the modern west at least, worship more readily at the altar of free will as a defining mark of our ‘superior’ rationality.

This is good because it makes us responsible for the things we do, and stops us from doing horrific things to essentially harmless people just because we have decided they’re religiously unacceptable for whatever reason. I live in the land of the Pendle witches; desperately poor people hanged for witchcraft, but including one person far less poor, Alice Nutter; from a well-known Catholic family…when being Catholic wasn’t safe either, at the time.

So we don’t do that any more, and we separated Church and State. Good. No Blasphemy laws coming back again either please, ever, ever again. Under whatever aegis of tolerance of Islam or any other religion at all.

We can’t ever go ‘back there.’ Blasphemy laws light human bonfires.

But there is a drawback. This Enlightenment has had the unfortunate side-effect of over-promoting us, at least in our own imaginations, at the expense of all those tiresome gods of previous superstitious generations who knew no better, or so we may tell ourselves, and now we ourselves are the gods with the feet of clay.

Fate however is not about superstition, but is at its heart simply the recognition that we are a world in ourselves on the one hand, a microcosm in our own individual right, but also very tiny in the scheme of something older and bigger than our ability to comprehend, let alone perceive. The Hubble telescope is amazing, staggering in the things it has revealed to us…again, that great eye in the sky of the World card, but a thousand Hubble telescopes still can’t tell us…the meaning of X – The Unanswerable of Everything.

So what’s my question for my Tarot today? Or my preoccupation? Do I have one? I’m a little unsettled, a bit under the weather – a longstanding health issue- and I am somewhat procrastinating on another writing job. I know my own mood perfectly well, but I want to see what the bit of my mind that operates through the Tarot will make of it.

Tweeted today 22 May:


Katie-Ellen@TrueTarotTales· I ask #Tarot diagnose my question? I draw The World. Traditionally, completion but I’m seeing ‘eyes in the sky’, satellite technology (support of reefs and forests?) Feb-Apr 2021 may see global burnout of this pandemic chapter though widely easing 21 June+ IMG Ciro Marchetti

The World Card from The Legacy of the Divine Tarot by Ciro Marchetti

The World is a positive card. It is about a global vision, and suggests the successful completion of a cycle.

So, no, this is not ‘the big one’ as pandemics go, and we already know that.

It’s big all right. It’s bad and desperately sad. It’s a weird one, a real Frankenstein virus, born out of our own messy destruction of whatever we need and want, and also of whatever we don’t need or want.

This card is not a vision of doom for humankind though it contains warnings. Notice that the artist has placed him standing on an egg-timer, symbol of infinity? Look where the sands are.

We are too many and it’s not our ‘fault’. We’ve just been doing what we do as an animal, but if these projections manifest, these figures will not be sustainable, except at the cost of great changes to our individual lifestyles and freedom of movement.

The figure in the World card feels as if he can fly. And so he can, aided by his machines and now we have satellites, eyes and ears in the sky. He thinks he is master of the globe, but the sands have emptied out. The resources are not infinite, and actually, he has his arms out for balance.

The card is Major Arcana 21, suggesting the year 2021 for completion of the current pandemic cycle. Where is he looking? His eyes are fixed on a future point between the zodiac signs of Aquarius and Aries…suggesting late January-late April 2021 as the time-frame for the global easing of the situation as successive waves rise and fall, continent after continent, country after country.

I wonder if 2001 A Space Odyssey, Arthur C Clarke was actually a prophetic vision of 2100 AD, and the 21st century may prove a crunch time for humanity, the great turning point. We can’t grow to those numbers and keep our individual freedom of movement. We’re already now at the limit of our natural range, says the egg-timer.

But right now, his feet –my feet -are here in Britain, planted on that egg-timer of infinity, floating above Gemini and Cancer. We have just entered Gemini and we enter Cancer on the 20/21 June to leave it for Leo 22/23 July.

The release of lock-down has begun. For some this is too soon. For others, it is nearly not soon or fast enough.

The World card seems to imply that even if they have to put the brakes back on, it won’t be hard or won’t be for long.

Tweeted 21 May

Katie-Ellen@TrueTarotTales·#cartomancy ‘graph’. Risk of second wave of #covid19UK? Readers don’t ‘know.’ But what is shown? 10 Spades absent – good. Risk detected as 2/5, characterised as 2 short spikes rather than waves on a graph between now and June 20/21. Stay CAUTIOUS! Cards= 7S, 9C, Ace C, 2D, QH

Freedom or safety?

They are both illusions. Do we want to be protected or do we want independent agency? A degree of personal autonomy? Whatever we would rather choose for ourselves, nothing is for free. The birds sing because they must, or lose their territory, the food that it can deliver, and their mating rights. It’s life and death to them. Robins are liable to fight if they meet outside mating time, the male and female may even fight to the death. It’s all about territory, and erritory is all about access to resources.

This is our local Robin Goodfellow, waiting for his suet, because he is not stupid, and he has got staff working on the case. The science is survival but it’s also the miracle, the beauty and the charm; the way he wins our hearts.

I am not a fan of banning things, or pointing fingers, or being told what to do, or telling other people what they should be doing, but the World card says we came into this world. We are of it, no less deserving than any other living thing. But it is not ours.

The world is ours to live in, and to enjoy and to marvel at. We need to do what we need to, in order to live. We need to eat, we need our children to eat. Some long ago fellow wrote in the Bible that the Lord gave us dominion over the lot, and it caught on big-time, very convenient thing to believe while our numbers were small. But the world is not our oyster, we’re only sailing but not steering our mother-ship, Earth, which made the bones which built us, using what came from the stars.

Wherever we go, however far we go, the party isn’t somewhere else.

It’s all going on right here, right now.

Star Size Comparison

Until next time 🙂