The End is a Gateway


Here lies the eerie chalice of the waning moon. Her cycle is almost done, and now she is Hecate, the wise crone, the elder, the one who is most instinctual, reflective, the one who has returned to her wild truth.

There is a certain spiritual element to this phase, known as the balsamic phase— named not for salad dressing but for the balsam resin of the fir tree, applied to the skin for anointing and burned in an act of purification, smoke spirals upward as an offering.

The season is Autumn. This phase indicates completion, endings, deep processing, and communion with nature as we cannot fight the inevitable death... on the other side of the new moon is the supple waxing crescent, on the other side is rebirth.

The Moon cycles through these phases each month, waxing to fullness and then shedding her light as she turns inward. However, the planets cycle through these phases too. And there are *several* of these planetary ending phases ongoing right now.

The news of the Amazon’s burning broke as Jupiter and Saturn enter into their third and final closing semi-sextile, their final phase. Soon, Jupiter will do the same with Pluto, and meanwhile Saturn and Pluto are also in their final phase. When we look around at the world, it doesn’t indeed feel like it’s ending. But nature reminds us that there is rebirth on the other side. What that new life will look like will be shaped by our awareness and collective action.


The aforementioned cycles are each affecting the collective in their own ways. Jupiter/Saturn is economical; as they will both reside in conservative Capricorn next year, we can expect a bit of a recession (and as we all know, we are a little overdue for it).

Jupiter/Pluto deals with world leadership and Saturn/Pluto deals with power-structures. In Capricorn, we are looking at Governments and their use/misuse of power. We are entering into a time when large entities like Google, Amazon and world leaders will test the limits of power, the influence of wealth, and yes, greed. So while resources become scarce for most, a select few will greatly gain. This is a huge turning point in history and we get to participate. These catastrophic fires in the Amazon were started for profit. The climate crisis is here to wake us up so that we can do our part individually to reduce our carbon footprint. But truly, it’s the governments and big business who should be held most accountable as they build more pipelines, destroy ecosystems and continue to allow chemical dumping into the waters and into our bodies.

New cycles are soon beginning in the sign of Capricorn and the good news is that this sign is about BUILDING. Also good news? We get to vote - not just on election day, but with our everyday choices. The balsamic phases are largely about reflection and taking stock of all that has happened since the last cycles initiated (Saturn/Pluto: 1982; Jupiter/Saturn: 2000 and Jupiter/Pluto: 2007), but it’s also about preparation for what’s next. In 2020, we are beginning totally new chapters as all of these major cycles reseed themselves - 2 of the 3 in the sign of supportive, ambitious and concerned with the long term, Capricorn.

The Jupiter/Saturn cycle, however, occurs at the very first degree of Aquarius. This is a really big deal because Jupiter/Saturn will conjoin every 20 years in the same element for 200 years, and then they shift. This is the period in the cycle when we switch officially leap from Earth to Air. Now, as I mentioned, this cycle deals with the economy. For the last 200 years, the emphasis has been material: property, land, the gold rush, railroads, development, commerce, cold, hard cash… As we move into Air, we’re seeing the emergence of cryptocurrency, venmo, non-physical cash. We had a mutation in the cycle in 1980 when Jupiter and Saturn conjoined in Libra and then bounced back to Taurus in 2000. 1980 brought the popularity of the credit card, an early form of nonphysical currency. In other words, you could spend money you don’t have! My hope is that since Air is focused on ideas, technology and collective ideals, that we can shift away from destruction of the environment for profit and preserve what’s left. I know that’s a high hope, but this is a really major shift. Air will also bring a return to valuing education and making it more accessible, as well as bringing advances within the system. It may take some time, but I see the college issue resolving.

To end on a light note, one of my clients said to me yesterday that she believes that everyone really knows that life was better 25 years ago, and she attributes it to all the pop-culture remakes and the nostalgia. Life was good when we had AOL dial-up and our parents dropped us off at the mall for an hour. But I really think that this is a sign of the times, we are revisiting our past so that we can learn from it and move forward more consciously and intentionally.