Moonletter February – March 2024
By Ben Belinsky
Welcome to the Moonletter for the forthcoming mooncycle beginning on 9 February 2024 with the new moon in Aquarius and spanning the full moon in Virgo on 24 February 2024.
Lunar New Year – Enter the Dragon
The Chinese or Lunar New Year begins with the new moon in Aquarius. This time it’s the year of the Wood Dragon. What a change after the year of the Rabbit that’s just finished as the Rabbit’s intelligence and caution give way to the Dragon’s full-on motivation and enthusiasm.
The power of wood is the ability to grow and develop from weakness to strength. Wood is nurtured by water, its roots break up the earth, it feeds fire, and it is threatened by metal (axe, chain-saw etc). The Chinese elements are always in dynamic relation of creation and destruction, just as yin and yang (the dark and the light) are in a dynamic relationship of mutual creation. The 5 Chinese elements: wood, earth, water, fire and metal are different from the 4 elements of western astrology and are expressed differently through each of the 12 characters of the Chinese zodiac. Of these characters, the dragon is the only mythical beast, coming from a different world from all of the others. And when one of the five elements is expressed through the character of the dragon, it takes on a mythical quality. Wood is a conduit for divine energy and so must be handled with great respect. And when the energy of wood is expressed through the mythical character of the dragon, it has the drive and motivation to bring infinite possibilities into being.
New Moon in Aquarius – 9 February
If Aquarius had a slogan, it would be “Make it new!” This sign is given to experiment, to create the future in the past’s despite. At this year’s Aquarius new moon, the sun and moon are in a tense angle to Uranus, the ruler of Aquarius which is currently in the sign of Taurus. Each of the outer planets represents a challenge, and the challenge of Uranus is to deal with the unexpected and if this means letting go of the past and traditional ways of thinking, so be it! But just to say a little more about how this works – Uranus asks us to live the side of ourselves that we don’t normally live – often the side of ourselves we hide for social convenience. For women, it could mean to live more their masculine side; for folk busy with the material world, to become a bit more concerned with spiritual reality; for extraverts to be more concerned with their inner life. In this way Uranus asks us to be true to ourselves.
This all comes into focus as we head towards the conjunction of Jupiter and Uranus in the financial sign of Taurus on April 9th. Jupiter’s expansive energy amplifies whatever it comes into contact with. So, depending where this conjunction falls in your chart, you may experience a sudden urge to take risks and break free.
Notably at the time of the new moon, Venus and Mars are together in late Capricorn, backed up by, or rather challenged by Pluto, now in the first degree of Aquarius. This suggests a time of battles of wills particularly over plans, decisions over what’s going to happen, when is it going to happen. This becomes intense around 14th February when Mars makes a conjunction with Pluto.
Then, looking at the fifth harmonic of the new moon chart, which I call the engineer’s harmonic, it’s a time when stalled projects can be completely re-engineered. When a new concept of what you’re doing means you can now put the pieces together in a new way. If you try to carry on with ‘business as usual’ it ain’t going nowhere. In other words, this is an opportunity to step back from others’ definitions of who you and to redefine yourself.
So much to talk about! And with Mercury the planet of communication in a tense angle to expansive Jupiter, expect the conversation to go on into the early hours, leaving sensitive Neptune longing for some peace and quiet.
Full Moon in Virgo – 24 February
Things get more serious at the Full Moon, with the sun in Pisces opposite the moon in Virgo, and with the sun at the exact midpoint of Mercury and Saturn, opposing the moon. And with Mercury the mental planet in sensitive Pisces, being reminded of responsibility and limitation by Saturn this can lead to a lot of serious thinking. However, this doesn’t have to mean negativity and depression, rather it is a time to face the real issues and tell it how it is. One way to deal with this is through explicitly positive visualisations and affirmations. Reminding ourselves that this is the change we’ve been asking for for a long time.
Meanwhile, Venus and Mars have both moved on into Aquarius. Definitely more experimental than loyal Capricorn. But with a tough angle from Jupiter suggesting that while things could be fun, you might need a safe word.
Strangely at the full moon, the three outer planets, Uranus, Neptune and Pluto are poorly connected to the rest of the chart. When a planet is not linked in, it’s out of touch with the other planets and it does its own thing. When the energies of any of the outer planets are disconnected, they are less amenable to mediation or control and can appear as weird or downright disturbing. The saving grace here is Saturn, close to the sun and moon, acting as a lead shield (in Mediaeval European alchemy Saturn was associated with the element lead) stopping things getting out of hand. Saturn asks us to be real, to deal with the realities of everyday life and to take responsibility. Here, Saturn in Pisces asks us to be compassionate with ourselves and with others who are going through stuff.
Key Dates this month:
|New Moon in Aquarius
|Lunar New Year : Year of Wood Dragon Begins
|Golden Week holiday begins in China
|Shrove Tuesday, Mardi Gras
|Lovers celebrate St Valentines Day
|Ash Wednesday, Beginning of Lent for Christians
|Mars conjuncts Pluto in Aquarius
|Sun enters Pisces
|Full Moon in Virgo
|Welsh celebrate St David’s Day
|New Moon in Pisces
|Daylight savings time begins in Canada and USA
|Fast of Ramadan begins for Muslims
All Key Date times are GMT
Moonletter February – March 2024 Audio Podcast