The pockets of stillness in between planes to and from LAX grow longer every day. The birds’ springtime chatter is now in the foreground, their playful call a shortcut to pleasure.
The skies are filled with life again.
But my momentary peace comes at great cost. An industry has been demolished. Paychecks for many won’t ever be recovered. Jobs lost will take a long time to resurface. No work in the U.S. also means little to no healthcare. Basic human necessities and rights vanished for millions overnight, all due to a microscopic virus.
My selfish relief intersects with our collective despair – and something beyond that. This moment is revealing much about each sector of our society. Collectively, we can’t actually fly at the rate we formerly were. Not if we want to have any ice left in The Arctic. The impact of airplane emissions is severe. As the New York Times has reported, each flight I take from LA to NYC melts “the summer sea ice cover by 3 square meters or 32 square feet”. It’s the point that Greta Thunberg was making when she sailed across the Atlantic to address the United Nations instead of taking a flight in 2019. It is, of course, a great privilege to be able to take a week to get somewhere rather than a day, a privilege most will never have in the current system we live in. In fact, The Center for Economic and Policy Research states that “the U.S. is the only advanced economy that doesn’t guarantee its workers any paid vacation time. And as a result, a quarter of the country’s private-sector workers don’t receive any time off at all, according to the Center for Economic and Policy Research (CEPR).”
Even if you are one of the lucky Americans that gets ten or so days off a year (compared to France, Germany, UK, and Spain that get 30+), many American vacation days go unused.
Capitalist consumerism devours time. It feasts on the hours that turn into days that turn into years of our lives spent producing. It poisons the collective imagination with the illusions that this is how things need to be. That this is what development, success, and abundance looks like.
Capitalism thirsts for high demand and manufactures desire like a sadist. It knows that we purchase what we feel we lack. It manipulates us into thinking consumerism will alleviate our pain, soothe our loneliness, and dampen our distress at a devastating result to our resources.
We cannot thrive when we treat our bodies, our suffering, and our earth like obstacles to get over.
The grief that permeates this moment is undeniable. The world that we knew is gone. Any financial system we thought was solid has shown itself as immediately disruptable. The truth we always sensed but have been trained to deny looms larger. We’ve constructed a world that is untenable, runs on our complacency, and demands that we are co-conspirators in order to benefit from it – which is to say, survive within it.
The New Moon in Taurus arrives at 7:26 PM PT on April 22. Taurus is a sign known for its slow, steady, and sturdy style. It settles into the divine pleasure of rest and relaxation – not at the cost of honest work, but as a balance to it. It knows how to harness the resources available and make what it can from them. It knows how to sustain its energy. A Taurus can be the last one on the dancefloor or the last one out of bed in the morning; it’s all about staying power for this sign. Not really into over-exerting itself, Taurus endures but also enjoys.
Sitting right next to the great game-changer of our solar system, Uranus, this New Moon comments on the ways in which our world has been shattered, interrupted, and is asking to be reinvented. This New Moon invites us to meditate on the long-term changes we know the world needs us to make. It asks us to take advantage of the halting nature of this moment and commit to imagining what we want to create when the world resumes. It wants us to wonder with greater commitment, what would happen if we had to go as slow as the earth? What creativity would living within our means help unleash? What ingenuity is awaiting us if we were to return to a pace where prosperity was for all, the earth included? What if instead of being above nature, we received the many luxuries of living in accordance with it?
Uranus entered Taurus for the first time back in 2018, heralding a seven-year stretch that demands a restructuring of the ways we work with our resources. In this fixed earth sign, Uranus shakes up our notions of what we have come to know as normal. What we thought was firmly in place gets revealed as vulnerable. What we are urged to do is get wildly innovative with the material we have on hand – not the material we have been taught to steal from the future.
Conjunct Uranus and square Saturn in Aquarius, the New Moon (and then Mercury) picks up on a theme we’ll spend the better part of 2021 living out: the Saturn/Uranus square. Uranus brings in a fresh perspective, Saturn steadies traditional values. Uranus awakens; Saturn restrains. Uranus changes; Saturn conforms. The friction of old structures crumbling and new ones emerging is acutely felt right now and will be well into next year.
At the time of the New Moon, Pluto is also stationing retrograde. A major player in 2020, Pluto rules all underworld themes: power, corruption, death, and regenerative healing practices. It initiates us into deep and meaningful changes, in part by unearthing the bones of all that has been sacrificed. Our greed, Pluto is making clear, will get us in the end if we don’t address the root of it. If we don’t grieve what we have already lost, we will continue to try and fill our longing with the products of our own demise.
The world we live within, the world we love, and dance, and birth, and die within was created by us and can be recreated by us. Uranus reminds us that it is our job to be channels for new ways of working. It is our job to initiate change. It is our job to disrupt injustice by demanding dignity for all.
New Moon blessings,
To work more deeply with the New Moon, please join me for A Workshop for the New Moon in Taurus, Full Moon in Scorpio, Astrology of April 22 – May 21 + A Journey through Venus Retrograde Pt 1. In it you’ll receive a reading, ritual, and guided meditation specific to your sign.