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Consciousness

Parables For The New Conversation (Chapter 2: The Lawyer)

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Illustration by Adan Ye

The following is a chapter from my book ‘Parables For The New Conversation.’ One chapter will be published every Sunday for 36 weeks here on Collective Evolution. (I would recommend you start with Chapter 1 if you haven’t already read it.) I hope my words are a source of enjoyment and inspiration for you, the reader. If perchance you would like to purchase a signed paperback copy of the book, you can do so on my production company website Pandora’s Box Office.

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From the back cover: “Imagine a conversation that centers around possibility—the possibility that we can be more accepting of our own judgments, that we can find unity through our diversity, that we can shed the light of our love on the things we fear most. Imagine a conversation where our greatest polarities are coming together, a meeting place of East and West, of spirituality and materialism, of religion and science, where the stage is being set for a collective leap in consciousness more magnificent than any we have known in our history.

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Now imagine that this conversation honors your uniqueness and frees you to speak from your heart, helping you to navigate your way more deliberately along your distinct path. Imagine that this conversation puts you squarely into the seat of creator—of your fortunes, your relationships, your life—thereby putting the fulfillment of your deepest personal desires well within your grasp.

‘Parables for the New Conversation’ is a spellbinding odyssey through metaphor and prose, personal sagas and historic events, where together author and reader explore the proposal that at its most profound level, life is about learning to consciously manifest the experiences we desire–and thus having fun. The conversation touches on many diverse themes but always circles back to who we are and how our purposes are intertwined, for it is only when we see that our personal desires are perfectly aligned with the destiny of humanity as a whole that we will give ourselves full permission to enjoy the most exquisite experiences life has to offer.”

2. The Lawyer

The main village road on the island of Allandon was predominantly a bright and colorful façade of shops and businesses of all different kinds. Only a few buildings in the older section were dull and run-down, and on this day the village renovator and his young apprentice were setting about gutting and restoring one of those buildings as the owner had recently died.

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On their way in, the renovator tapped his crowbar on the rusted metallic shingle hanging in the front that read Attorney-at-Law.

“This building was owned by the village lawyer,” the renovator said. “Poor fellow, he died a lonely man. It had been years since anyone had asked him to represent them.”

“Why, he couldn’t win a case?”

“Quite the opposite—he never lost a case! He was so good at clearly expressing his client’s side of a dispute that the decision always went in his favor.”

“So how come people stopped hiring him?”

“Well, he’s really only got himself to blame,” laughed the renovator. “He would always brag that he could win either side of any dispute, which was probably true—that’s how good he was. But as a result it slowly dawned on the people here in the village that both sides of a dispute could be seen to have merit if they were properly heard. We spoke about it amongst ourselves and came to realize that if we just learned how to listen to each other better, we could resolve our disputes ourselves.”

They walked into the building. The lawyer’s office was thick with dust, and cobwebs had started to form up the sides of his large oak desk. The renovator plopped down on the big leather chair and put his feet up on the desk.

“The great thing is, we eventually learned to resolve our disputes in a way that satisfied both sides. We tried to explain to the lawyer that we had found a better way to resolve disputes.”

“What did he say?”

“He dismissed it. He argued that we would go back to our old ways. So he came into his office every morning and sat here waiting for clients to come in. But they stopped coming.”

And you couldn’t convince him that things had really changed?”

“Convince him?” the renovator laughed. “This man made his living on being right. He didn’t know how to lose an argument.”

“Maybe that’s why he died lonely,” the apprentice said.

Twenty years ago I thought that I was well on my way to having life figured out. I had a Master’s Degree in Existential Philosophy and I had studied the History of Western Civilization at the prestigious Liberal Arts College in Montreal. Never mind that other people didn’t always agree with my beliefs about life, I felt that they hadn’t studied enough or simply weren’t intelligent enough to grasp what I was saying.

Ouch.

To me a great conversation was one in which I was able to convince someone to agree with my way of thinking, through the use of relentless logic and pertinent facts. And if I could be persuasive even when I wasn’t rock-sure about my position, all the greater was the accomplishment. I once convinced one of my peers to abandon his thesis proposal after arguing that it was flawed. When I later bragged to some classmates that I knew virtually nothing on the subject, I couldn’t understand why they were not fully impressed by my feat. There seemed to be no conversation more satisfying to me than convincing others of my point of view. Whether the other person benefited from the conversation didn’t really enter into the equation for me.

What I didn’t realize at the time was that I was setting myself up for quite a fall. In fact, I’ve been knocked off my high horse a number of times since then. Some of the bruises to my ego were so deep that I feel fortunate that I survived to tell the tale.

One such experience happened shortly after I graduated. I was introduced to a New Age discussion group that was hosted by a friend of my father’s named Steve. The group would discuss the work of some of the writers of the time such as Richard Bach, Ram Dass, Carlos Castaneda and others. What I found intriguing about the meetings was that, although I usually felt tired and unmotivated on my way there, the atmosphere and the conversation would always make me feel incredibly alive and energized by the time I left.

When my first ten week session had ended, Steve thought that my background in philosophy would make me a great facilitator for the group’s next session. I agreed to do it on the condition that each member made a commitment to be there for all the meetings. The previous session was more informal in this regard but I figured this was the least everyone could do if I was going to spend the time preparing for each meeting. As it turns out, they kept their end of the bargain while I ended up spending very little time preparing for each meeting. On the day of the meeting I would just think of a topic that I was familiar enough with and scratch out a few notes.

The group conversations that I was orchestrating had one simple dynamic: I would put a controversial idea out to the group and take up the position opposite to the general consensus. It seemed easy for me to argue my points. The participants usually could provide no evidence to substantiate what they said. They would simply say that’s how they felt or that’s what they believed, and so I left each week feeling that my arguments had prevailed.

What I didn’t feel at the end of each week was the energy and aliveness that had come during every meeting when Steve was facilitating. It just wasn’t there. The other participants might have noticed it too, but as they had made a commitment, they showed up every week without complaint. By the final week I was quite happy that the session was ending. It had become nothing less than a chore for me. As usual I presented the topic for the evening, and challenged one of the more reticent participants to give his opinion. But instead of speaking about the topic, he blurted out, “Richard, I don’t think it should be this way!”

I was taken aback. I collected myself and asked him to explain what he meant, but he felt that his outburst was out of line, and he apologized. He was going to address the topic, but I asked him again what he meant by that comment. He looked around at the others, and then took a slow breath and began to elaborate. And did he have a lot to say! He had noticed that the mood during the meetings were more serious and confrontational than they had been in the past. He felt that instead of arguing and debating, we should be sharing with and understanding each other. The more he spoke, the more embarrassed I became.

When he had finished, I decided that instead of moving forward with the topic, I would ask everyone else how the past ten weeks had gone for them. I figured I would get some different opinions that would give me some ammunition to counter what he had said. But one after another, each one echoed very similar comments. I was starting to feel that my facilitation had been a stark and unequivocal failure, and what was worse, I had been completely oblivious to it for the whole ten-week session.

But while their words seemed such a negative indictment of me, none of them had a hint of bitterness or anger. They all spoke with respect and compassion, almost apologetically. When it came around to Steve, the last person to speak, he simply offered a warm acknowledgment for my willingness to sit quietly and listen to it all. It was truly difficult for me to hold back tears.

The conversation surrounding how miserably I had failed as a facilitator lasted the entire two hours of the meeting, and by the time Steve had finished his comments it was time for us to go. But instead of all running off at the end as we had done the previous weeks, we hung around outside and talked for several more hours, well past midnight. We laughed and joked and felt an unbelievable connection to each other. The energy and lightness that I had felt in Steve’s sessions had come back. This final meeting turned out to be by far the best one that I had facilitated!

The lesson was big for me, and it took months to fully sink in. I came to realize that my judgment of the participants as shallow simpletons who were lacking conviction was way off base, as most judgments are. They just had nothing to prove, and their depth was in their compassion, their humanity, and their authenticity. This was my first real life lesson in the art of the conversation, where there didn’t need to be winners or losers, and where everyone can take something away including a real sense of connectedness with one other. I went into that facilitation thinking I had something to teach, and left realizing I had so much to learn.

I now believe that we all have a strong need and a deep longing for authentic conversation, in today’s society more than ever. I spent ten weeks trying to show everyone how smart I was, but it was only when the conversation became real—when I stopped having something to prove, and people were able to say what they really felt—that there was some kind of meaningful exchange. And where there is meaningful exchange, that is where true learning can take place, and a real connection can be felt.

There is risk involved, no question about it. We have a fear of being ridiculed, of being made wrong, and so we often conform to accepted opinion even if we don’t agree with it. When this happens, it’s no wonder we leave such exchanges feeling uninspired. We have a deep desire to express what we think and explore our unique perspective on things. There is no better time than now for each of us to look more deeply into the way we express ourselves, and no less importantly the way we provide an environment for others to express themselves.

The rules of the new conversation are simple in a way. Speak our deepest truth and allow others to do the same. We allow others to do the same when we are genuinely curious about what they might have to say. We acknowledge their triumphs and courage, and commiserate with their losses and sorrow. But this must be authentic, not some surface act of political correctness. Better to tell someone straight out that you don’t care about their story and leave the conversation. And what if we have trouble being authentic, what if we cannot help but judge other people? Then we can have that be the subject of our conversation. The new conversation can support this—especially this—since it is honest. The new conversation brings us close to our highest levels of vulnerability and authenticity. Of course it’s difficult to be authentic all the time, but surely we have some experience of authentic expression to draw on. When the desire is there, we all have the capability to support each other in creating a shared space of trust that is safe enough for us to be vulnerable and reveal our deepest truths.

Lately I have been noticing around me that people are getting better at this way of relating to each other. We are becoming more aware of the power of creating a non-judgmental space. I love to be in a conversation with someone who really gets it, and no matter how I express myself I’m not judged or made wrong. Yes, they have their own views, which they would tell me if I was interested. They might even invite me to try a new idea on, to see if it fits. But nothing is forced, because they don’t pretend to know what it feels like to walk in my shoes.

In retrospect I realize that this was the dynamic of my New Age discussion group. I was free to be myself for ten weeks, and only when I was ready to hear a deeper truth was it presented to me. While my ego had tremendous difficulty with what each person confessed about their experience of my facilitation, there was already an implicit trust because they had all spoken with compassion and humility throughout. As a result I was able to make a crucial connection between my behavior and my not feeling energized by these meetings. Had they been judging me and making me wrong, the outcome would have surely been different. Likely I would have put up my verbal fists for a real debate. Both sides might have teetered a bit but neither side would have conceded defeat.

This has long been the legacy of our society: arguing, debating, trying to prove we are right and the other is wrong, under the illusion that there is strength in being right and weakness in being wrong. But as our consciousness has expanded, we have come to see that the opposite is true. We have all felt in conversation the remarkable impact of someone admitting that they were wrong, as we have seen our impact on others when we are open to the possibility that perhaps they are right. And when we go beyond even that, to an awareness that it is not about right and wrong—that perhaps there isn’t really any right or wrong—then we find ourselves in a conversation that has the potential to unite us all where in the past we have been divided.

Move on to Chapter 3…

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Consciousness

Can We Expect Peace Between Nations When Our Most Basic Relationships Fail?

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To say that I’m tired of hearing about politics is an understatement. I’ve pondered wearing earplugs to muffle the pundits. I’ve considered using Google glasses to program “Trump” and “Democrats” and “Republicans” out of my visual spectrum.

Perhaps there’s one issue that must come before politics…

It’s marriage.

Our romantic relationships are the basic unit of civilization. Men and women have children and build families, which make up neighbourhoods, communities, cities, states, and nations. Basic logic, right?

And it takes civilized people to make a civilization. So how can we expect to have peaceful nations when our most basic relationships are downright crude? We have missions to Mars and particle colliders that are rumoured to open portals to new dimensions. But, when it comes to love… we’re dragging our knuckles on a flat Earth.

Our version of love is a cycle of insecurity

We can’t stand to be alone. But rather than learning to love our lives and find meaning alone, we place impossible standards for fulfillment on our lovers. We get a little security, and a lot of pleasure. But when the chemicals wear off, we’re left with the truth: We don’t know anything about our lovers.

And when we do get to know each other, we hate what we find. Then we split. But each split tears a thread in the fabric of our society, because family is our foundation.

We can thrust ourselves into heady political conversations, and pretend that our red (or blue) rage is going to build a better world. But those political solutions aren’t addressing the root cause of our pain. We just need to fix how we love first.

Foundations of love

Foundations are, well, foundational to success. So we pave them for our houses, we practice scales before learning a difficult piece of music, and we learn the fundamentals of math before going on to algebra and calculus. We know that we need a strong foundation for successful relationships, too. But who actually takes the time to build one?

Loving responsibly is hard. It seems outdated or religiously nonsensical by today’s standards (getting to know someone inside and out before you take them to bed?), but if you don’t have a strong foundation, you’ve got a house of cards. Just like every one of my previous relationships.

From age 12 I trained myself to objectify women by watching porn. And until my early twenties, I was more concerned about my next sexual fix than my career. I hooked up with girlfriends not because I wanted to love them with all my heart, but because they were my key to security and satisfaction — which I got, for a time. But the net result was an increasingly lonely, unfulfilled, and depressed version of me.

By the end of my last relationship, I seriously considered taking my own life. What was I doing wrong? After picking up reflective habits like journaling and meditation, I figured it out.

I wasn’t fulfilled alone. I was bored alone. And I was unsuccessful alone. But in my mind, relationships were magical things that would wash all the bad stuff away and make me happy — kind of like a drug. In reality, for each desire that I lacked on my own, like joy, or security, I was strangling my relationships with conditions.

I’d “love” a girl until I was no longer joyful with her, or until she bored me. Then, for each condition that she failed to meet — no one can be perfect 100% of the time — I withdrew my love from her, bit by bit. The withdrawals happened on her side, too.

By the end of my relationships, whether they were six-month flings or two-year engagements, the end was predictably uncivil. We abused each other with our language. We cheated on each other, and betrayed each other’s trust. We blamed each other on and on for what the other had failed to do. Almost sounds like our relationships with other countries…

But the real failure was in choosing each other as romantic partners. It was in pursuing love without getting to know each other’s values and character traits first — before we built a foundation. We gambled on placing our faith in each other. And, like most people, we lost. Big time.

Rather than castrating myself, or settling for an endless string of heartaches — somebody shoot me — I worked on the foundation of my next relationship. I worked on me.

I learned to lean into my insecurity

Instead of running for another girl when I got lonely, I leaned into my insecurity and learned more about me. I developed a prayer life and a relationship with God. And I stuck to my new habits of journaling and meditation.

Through mindfulness, I channeled my sexual desire into my goals and self improvement. I felt the urge to ogle gorgeous women, of course, and at 27, their beauty moves me now more than ever. But I trained myself to move in a positive direction, to express healthy emotions at a woman’s beauty — like gratitude, inspiration, and awe — instead of imagining how she could please me.

Then I took it a step further.

I disciplined myself to think of a woman’s future husband. Would he respect me for the way I was thinking about her? And then I’d think of my future wife. If I couldn’t expect myself to view other wives with dignity and respect, how could I expect that of other men in looking at mine?

In my new way of thinking, I shed my selfish ways and became a man — and a neighbour, and a lover. A year into the habit I became independent for the first time in my life. I discovered my writing career and found success in it. And I became a role model for other people.

My dramatic life change happened because I figured out how to harness my sexual desire in an uplifting way. And in learning how to love civilly, I became a functioning part of civilization. *But people still call me out for not voting…

How you can love civilly

The way we think about each other determines how we act: civil, or uncivil. So you’ve got to train yourself to think respectful and positive thoughts — especially when it comes to beautiful men and women.

No matter how much we hope, the magical love chemicals can’t erase reality: We either love each other with respect, or we don’t. And if we don’t, our relationships will degrade, and our families will degrade. And as our broken relationships pick up steam down the social gradient, our communities degrade, and our cities degrade. And if the cycle of uncivil romance continues, states and nations will degrade as well. It’s basic logic.

So, you can talk about what these morons in office are doing to feel important and keep you occupied… or you can do something that actually makes a difference. You can learn to love like a human-fucking-being. Pardon my crude language.

Learn to love for the long term. Build faith in yourself. Quit porn and casual sex. Become so joyful and inspired by your own life that you couldn’t imagine expecting anyone else to be responsible for your happiness. Channel your sexual desire into your highest self. Use those urges to remind yourself of the things you haven’t done yet to become the person you want to be. Direct that energy into a future you would admire, and a person you’d be proud of.

And when you’ve changed the way you live and think, you’ll change the way you love. You’ll love civilly.

By your example, you’ll inspire others to take the harder path and to love civilly themselves. And when enough people do that… I won’t ever have to hear another political pundit for as long as I shall live. And I’ll thank you.

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Consciousness

Are You Sure You Want To Cancel 2020?

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In Brief

  • The Facts:

    Many people have been wanting to cancel 2020 given all of the challenges that have arisen this year, but are these challenges not what we need to wake up?

  • Reflect On:

    Is humanity living in a way we are truly capable of? Are we really going to change and create a world where we can thrive if we all remain in 'normal' with our heads down just getting by? Perhaps we need a shake up!

A massive evolution in the way we think and live is long overdue, and now the environment is perfectly set for it to happen. Many call this process ‘raising collective consciousness.’ It’s no secret, 2020 has been a intense year, and you may have noticed that many are creating memes calling for the cancellation of 2020. This comes from the idea of ‘cancel culture’ which is an ideology whereby anything we don’t like, even if it’s only some of us, has to be shamed into cancellation as opposed to dealing with what it truly says about us and why we’re triggered by it. But more on this in a moment.

Deep down I imagine you feel it. What we are doing on a day-to-day basis in our lives feels limiting and it feels like we are capable of much more. This feeling comes from an innate desire within the deepest aspect of who we are, our soul, to continually evolve and expand as a being. It’s almost as if we begin to feel uncomfortable when we become stagnant and stop evolving or growing.

Right now, our current way of living societally and our current mass unconsciousness is causing us to push away that deep desire. We do this because we have become so identified with thought, that if a desire to shift or change comes up, and we cannot rationalize nor see how we can change, and in turn, we push that desire away to hold onto what we have grown comfortable with.

Thus, intensity and chaos have ensued in our world in an attempt to wake us up. Perhaps it’s time to embrace this desire for change. Do we really want our world to simply go back to normal? Was normal truly allowing us to thrive?

Ridding 2020?

A lot of people have been sharing the idea that we want to get rid of or cancel 2020 because it has been such a ‘bad year.’ I understand what train of thought can lead here, and I understand what way of being can lead here, but regardless, I feel it’s an important time to embrace what’s going on and ask big questions about what we’re doing as a collective – living life so disconnected from anything that deeply resonates with us. What we call ‘chaos’ has always been a potent tool for evolution, only, we often get in the way of that evolution by remaining asleep to what’s really going on around us, and continually pushing away that knowing that we can create meaningful change.

Most of what is rising to the surface right now, in terms of truths regarding current events, are all realities that people have been telling others about for years – and yet most of us just went on our merry way, heads down, living life as if none of it was happening. For example, elite child sex trafficking is one collective trauma being faced right now by many, and every day I hear of more and more people facing this reality, unsure of what to do about it as they feel despair. I cannot blame anyone for wanting to hide from this information. Life can be tough and very demanding simply to get by, so questioning our reality and why it is the way it is may not be at the top of our priority list. It may feel easier to just go on with our lives as if it’s not real, continually voting, putting these ‘corrupt’ individuals in power and accepting life as it is.

But if life is providing experiences that give us a chance to evolve beyond this old paradigm, is it perhaps time we listen? Can we truly just keep our heads down as we watch our collective uncomfort rise and mental health decline as our world no longer resonates with our being?

Just because the truth makes us uncomfortable, doesn’t mean we don’t need to address it, it just means we are avoiding it, and if we continue to choose not to look, it will ‘blow up in our face’ – just as it is right now.

May years ago people would ask me ‘Joe, do you think people will one day know about all that is going on behind the scenes?’ I said yes, there are collective truths and traumas people will HAVE to face, there is no avoiding it. This is why so many people are doing their inner work and becoming helpful members of the global community who will be able to help others through their emotional upheavals when more of this truth continues to come out, just like it is right now.

The human race has been oppressed for centuries. At the core, is the suppression of human consciousness. The less we know who we truly are and what we are truly capable of, the more we can be coddled and controlled into living lives that serve a few. The reality of this is coming to the surface.

So should we cancel 2020? Or embrace what it’s trying to bring up on a deeper level, and choose to focus on inner work, personal transformation ad collective transformation? This, as opposed to mentally and emotionally running around trying to say why everything is wrong and bad, will this truly bring about meaningful change?

We’re All Playing Roles

With that said, instead of looking at who the good guys are and who the bad guys are, I challenge others to think of it in terms of roles. What role are people playing for one another that allows us to question what’s going on, learn a lesson, and change? Do you want the world as it is today to continue in this manner? Do you feel we are capable of harmony and thrivability? What do you want the world to look like?

Viewing it in this manner will bring us to solutions as opposed to arguing about what the problems are from our political point of view. Staying within the paradigm of our current world, where we create sides, argue, and remain in a political landscape, will always create more separation and will limit our potential, won’t it? It’s time for a new perspective, a new way of looking at things, and in order for that to happen we must come to terms with what not paying attention has created in our reality.

When we live in this manner, are we living life fully? Or are we just getting by? Are we caught up in the future or the past, trying to live in those states? Or are we fully living now? Are we ready to move from a state of being where we are identified with our thoughts and ego constantly, and move to a state where we are truly who we are, our awareness, living fully?

This is what this transition is about. This is what 2020 is helping to bring forth: the necessary events and revelations that push us deeply to question our lives and society. Start dreaming again, start thinking outside the box. Whatever world you choose to plug into is the one we will actively create. If you feel humanity is capable of something different, or better, beyond just the changing of a president, then now is the time to truly put your intention and action into that.

It’s a potent time for change. Perhaps we don’t want to wish normal back into existence?

Explore this process more deeply here.

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Consciousness

Full Moon In Aquarius: Erratic Progression

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We are having a Full Moon in Aquarius on August 3rd/4th, it will appear the fullest on night of the 2nd in Western North America. This is the peak of the Lunar cycle that began with a New Moon in Cancer on July 20th/21st, as some of the themes mentioned in that article are still in effect.

The energies of a Full Moon are strongest in the days surrounding it yet its astrological configurations also play a part over the following two weeks. You may start to see its effects slowly build up after the New Moon prior to it.

Full Moons are a period in which we feel a push-pull between two opposing signs, in this case being the Moon in Aquarius and the Sun in Leo. It can play out as either a conflict, an integration, or some sort of dynamic playing out between the energies of both signs. The Moon reflects the expression of feeling and emotion while the Sun reflects the expression of ego and conscious self.

We may feel this opposition happening individually within us and/or we can also experience it play out around us with some people (or circumstances) expressing the Aquarius side and others expressing the Leo side. In some cases, Full Moons can also reflect/trigger some sort of change or release.

Full Moon In Aquarius Opposite Sun In Leo

We have been in Leo season since July 22nd and will continue until August 22nd/23rd. This is the sign of self-expression, creativity, love, affection, children, courage, vitality, passion, leadership, generosity, and playfulness. Ruled by the Sun, it is also about shining in our power and being in alignment with what really lights us up and gets us excited.

The negative expressions of Leo can be egotistical, self-absorbed, authoritarian, dramatic, stubborn, jealous, and hot-tempered.  As it is associated with seeking praise and attention, it can be demanding of respect and be boisterous without considering or caring about how others respond to that.

The Full Moon highlights and brings the energies of the opposing sign of Aquarius into this Leo backdrop. This is the sign of friends, networks, social dynamics, the group, the team, humanity, and being in the best interest of the collective. Associated with Uranus, it can be unconventional, idealistic, innovative, progressive, original, inventive, technological, reforming, and even revolutionary.

Negatively, Aquarius can be overly detached, aloof, unemotional, and very invested in the mind at the expense of the heart. Traditionally ruled by Saturn, it can also be unyielding when it comes to the ideas and perspectives that it has already decided on.

Both Leo and Aquarius have some similarities. They are ‘Fixed’ signs and therefore can both be determined yet stubborn. They are also both associated with originality and authenticity. In Aquarius, this comes from its unconventional and innovative Uranian attributes while in Leo it comes from being inspired by its Solar heart centred self-expression.

Full Moon Square Uranus, Sextile Chiron

The Sun and Moon are in a T-square aspect with Uranus bringing its energy strongly into the equation. This planet is associated with Aquarius and viewed as a modern ruler of this sign, therefore it emphasizes some of the Aquarian themes mentioned above.

This can also reflect an energy that is disruptive, unpredictable, erratic, nonconforming, and rebellious. It can be hard to focus and more prone to sudden changes, accidents, loss, or separations. However, it can also reflect liberation, breakthroughs, excitement, and is a good time to shake things up and try new approaches to things.

This Full Moon is in a supportive sextile with Chiron which shares unorthodox and innovative qualities with Uranus. Chiron is also about bringing healing and wholeness to a situation and is associated with personal growth. It brings a potential for integration, learning, problem solving, finding solutions, purpose, and the elevation of consciousness.

Full Moon Sextile Mars, Squaring Jupiter & Pluto During Pre-Retrograde Shadow

The Sun-Moon opposition is in a harmonious aspect with Mars which can bring an active, asserting, energetic, sexual, or even a competitive or fighting energy. Mars is also in its own sign of Aries as it slows down to go retrograde on September 9th/10th. We will be experiencing a period of adjustments over the coming months in how we apply Mars in certain areas of our lives depending on our personal birth charts. Some of the things that are happening this month, leading up to it, will contribute to that process.

At the time of this Full Moon, Mars is also in a tight square with Jupiter which has been building up in the days prior. It also moves towards a square with Pluto over the following two weeks. We may overextend ourselves during this time or do things in an excessive, overconfident, compulsive or obsessive way.

Conflicts around beliefs, perspectives, hidden matters, or abuse can also arise. As we get closer to mid-August the energy becomes more intense with an increased potential of power struggles. This aspect can trigger passion and is good for strategic actions. All of these factors mentioned in this section are cranking up Mars energy overall. I will be writing a separate article on the upcoming retrograde as we get closer to it, join my mailing list here to ensure that you receive it.

Mercury & Venus In Hard Aspects With Saturn, Venus Conjunct North Node

Mercury is in a tight opposition with Saturn. This can reflect thoughts or conversations that are cautious, hesitant, pessimistic, or limiting. We may experience delays or obstacles around commuting or communications with others.  The need to be realistic around certain issues may also come up.

Like Mercury, Venus has social qualities and is also in a hard aspect with Saturn, this one being a frustrating quincunx. It can be hard to integrate or juggle Saturnian areas of responsibilities, commitments, boundaries, discipline, and structures with Venus areas of friendships, love, pleasures, sensuality, values, money, attraction, or other things that are aesthetic related. We may need to be extra adaptable or make adjustments.

Venus is also moving towards a conjunction with the Lunar North Node in Gemini in the days following this Full Moon. New relations, or developments around past relations, could have a fated quality that can bring growth and help us to move forward in a better or constructive way.  Our perception or approach to Venus ruled areas (mentioned in above paragraph) may evolve in a helpful manner.

Things To Consider

In what areas of your life should you try new approaches? What can you do to shake things up? What are some potential solutions for issues you are facing? How can you use your creativity in an innovative way? What are your relations with others pushing you towards? How can you be more of a team player? How can you better balance needs of self with the needs of the group?   What parts of your life are calling for originality and authenticity?

These are just some examples of themes that could come up during this period; however, there may be other variations of this energy playing out as well.  If you wish to do any sort of intentional release connected to what has come up at this Full Moon, it is best to do so anytime over the two weeks following when it is waning. The exact moment of this Full Moon is on August 3rd at 3:59pm Universal Time. You can click here to see what that is in your time zone.

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