The Pulse of Courage
New Moon in Leo/Solar Eclipse, August 2017
We are getting a tour of everything left unhealed. The highlighting is amazing. The revelations and exposures. This cycle of Leo has revealed to us our struggles with fire, all our confusion around self, identity and ego. It has illuminated all the ways attempting to make ourselves comfortable when we are afraid become dangerous if they keep us from facing our fear.
On the national level, we are going through it. The devastating charade of whiteness; the deep, dangerous confusion that comes from wounds unhealed mixed with too much privilege; the ways in which people confuse their favorite security blankets for identity and identity for self. The ways people can't see who they will be without the Big Lie. These are potent times with short circuits and shorter fuses. Our hearts are bursting with what has always been there.
We have to meet it. We have to bring ourselves. We have to stay in our hearts, look at our pieces of the puzzle and get/stay engaged. It is our job to understand the healing we need so that we can step up for each other. Dismantling white supremacy, patriarchy and colonialism, and healing the Earth are the big workings of our time. The work is outward, and also deeply subtle and personal. It is dependent on being with ourselves truly. It requires moving smoothly from the wounds that are easy to label as "personal" to the understanding of how those wounds feed into this hideous story that threatens to undo us.
The eclipse is calling us into alignment. Alignment within ourselves, alignment with what is around us, alignment with the big tides of healing that are attempting to move through all of us. It is a heartbeat. A pulse in the dance of planets. It shows us how the Earth, Sun and Moon are moving together. On the human level, it will show us the dance we are in.
We are not all caricatures of ego and oppression. We don't all have the whole machinery at our disposal to set in motion on a whim. We do all have the human potential to misidentify our precious selves with wounding, oppression, conditioning, privilege, and comfort/familiarity. We do all have ways in which we carry the stories that perpetuate oppression. We are all more or less calibrated to the current system defining our reality.
We are all trying to find our way. We all have only ourselves to bring. All our individual stories are unfolding simultaneously, intricately, uniquely, but not separately. We cannot abandon them, and being asked to show up is not a call to. It is an invitation to find ourselves, which means seeing ourselves in the dance, letting its pulse move through us and ourselves move with that beat. It means seeing and owning that we are more than what we have been conditioned to be, yes, and that we are responsible for truly becoming that more, for clearing our conditioning out of the way of the beauty inside. No one else can do it for us.
The Gift- Five of Keys
Forest fires can destroy the health of the forest, or they can clear the forest of disease. What makes the difference is not necessarily the strength of the fire, but the health of the forest when it starts. There is still time to choose which forest you will be. We can't go back and get all caught up on whatever we haven't yet healed. The change is here. But we can stay focused and make some choices. Will you panic and attempt to put the fire out? Will you panic and rush around feeding the flames? Or will you ground and center, and direct this transformative power where it can serve best? Will you feed it your old stories? Will you help it find the filters that keep you from seeing clearly? Will you feed it your disempowerment, relinquish the ways you baby your fear?
We still have time to go through this the way a healthy forest does. We can strengthen our cores and willingly offer up what needs to go. This could be a beautiful culling, a restoration. We are not really served by the illusion of control. We can learn to work with what is big, and wild, and unruly. We can serve up what keeps us from ourselves when the fire comes knocking through discomfort, conflict, triggers and confusion. We can get centered in humility and the desire to be free, inviting in the heart of our courage.
The fire is a gift. It will fertilize your soil. Claim your right to transform and be done with what ails you/us.
The Tools- Two of Keys, Rx
Return to heart. Reach out, step out, speak out, speak up. Try hard, fuck up. Return to heart. Return to heart, return to center, return to intuition. Clear the channel. Repeat.
This is a time for intentional, thoughtful, persistent self-examination and exploration. This is a time to keep asking questions. This is a time to ask, really wanting to know. This is a time to love yourself through that process, to be committed to it, to care to build the skills. To be the loving challenger who keeps guiding yourself towards what is real in you, who asks a lot but equips you for the task.
If you know what helps you be courageous, you have no excuse not to put those things to work. If you don't know, but the world is calling you to courage, it is time to find the tools that will get you there. To sit down with yourself and have some (loving!!) real talk about what will help you get bigger and move through. What will help you open and look into what makes you tick, even if you don't want to see. We all wear our fears differently. We all wear our courage differently.
Be willing to look inside yourself. You will see what scares you, but it may not be what you fear to see. You will see what will be the greatest source of inspiration in transformations to come, but it may not be what you hope to see. Some of this work is seeing the filters you usually look through that keep you from seeing yourself clearly.
Return to heart. Look with love. Love yourself into looking past your comfort zone. Love yourself into the hard work. Look for answers, not so you can use them to shame yourself, stop yourself, or hurt yourself, but because you deserve them. Because there is more to you than the terrain marked by your wounds and conditioning. Because there is nothing inside you you are not equal to.
The Challenge- Strength, Rx
can you own your strength?
Do you know your strength? Do you know that it is in your tender parts, in your heart, in your wild animal nature, in all the gifts you don't know how to see? It's in the sacred things your fear tries to protect. It's in the ability to lean in when you are afraid, to know that fear is a language that can be understood and lead us to healing. It's in your ability to survive, and in your ability to break open weeping for what pains your heart. In your ability to make mistakes and show up for their results with love and humility. In your ability to heal, lay things to rest, choose to thrive.
Strength is not in domination. It is not in control. It is not in a fear of fear, in conquering fear, in "no fear." It is not in taking power, deflecting responsibility. It is not in stoicism in the face of the waves. It is not in the unreason of rigidly linear reasoning. It is not in infallibility. Not in pretending not to hurt, or nursing your hurts past their expiration date.
To own your strength is to let it be what it is. To let it be vulnerability, to let it be hope, to let it be love. It is in supporting your sensitivity instead of managing it, coddling it or denying it.
To own your strength is to use it. Strength builds if we work it right. These gifts are meant to be used. It's not some freak chance we feel as deeply as we do. Not our kryptonite. Nature is more conscious than that. Our hearts function this way to keep us in balance, to keep us in relationship, to keep us from ever losing hold of the lines of life that help us survive and thrive. Our severance is self-inflicted. The original wounds are buried so deep it's hard to find them. Our protections are killing us. We don't know what we fear. We dress our fear up in stories and can't hear the sacred wisdom underneath. Our desire for home. Our desire to be reunited with ourselves.
Choose, again and again, what takes you towards your healing. Choose what unravels that which binds you. Choose what helps you show up with what you have. Using the Gift and the Tools, claim your strength. Feed to the fire all the ways you pretend to be weak, helpless, powerless or treat your heart/power/emotions like they are dangerous. You are dangerous only when you deny your power. You are dangerous only when you abdicate responsibility for what you have to give.
Look at yourself carefully and lovingly and figure out what you need to do to become the person you would most want at your side when the going gets going. Think past idealized notions of what it is to be strong that are rooted in oppression. Think past individualism, privilege and scarcity.
Call in presence, heart, courage and deep roots, honesty, humility and pride.