Photo by Ariana Villegas


Tonight's New Moon Is A Good Time To Ask Uncomfortable Questions

Can you handle the truth? Because it's coming, whether or not you can.

As if to prove to us that this July is, in fact, the longest month, we're getting two new moons before it ends. It's not really like a Leo to arrive early. Well, not unless they plan on seizing control of setting up—since Leos rarely trust someone else to make the party quite as fabulous as they want it to be. Then, a Leo isn't just early, they're waiting on you. In the sky, this thin sliver of new possibilities is restless, a moon that's been tapping her foot for a while now, impatiently. This Leo new moon has got the kind of fuse that blows up real quick and then acts like the fire is just part of the show. Move along and, please, mind your business.

It's worth noting that within half an hour of the new moon, the Sun, Moon, Mars, and Venus will all be in Leo. Sounds like a lot of sad kittens in a room together singing, "It's my party, and I'll cry if I want to" (a nod and a wink to lesbian angel, Leslie Gore). Meanwhile, just as the new moon turns on her mood lighting, or what an architect of the sky might call her "scenes," Mercury finally pushes the breaks on his retrograde movement. With so many planets in ostentatious Leo, it might be challenging to remember that just because Mercury is direct doesn't mean the retrograde shadow has passed. Unfortunately for those of us who feel our feet being held to the fire, outside pressure or inner calls to respond with action might not produce their intended results.

The shadow period of Mercury retrograde is a fertile time for last-minute chaos and opportunities to learn your lessons the hard way. That is, if the soft way just hasn't been speaking to you. And, while you can't avoid difficulty, you can certainly mitigate it. Key things to note are instincts and insights around honesty and truth. July was a month that offered us two eclipses, and, with those eclipses, opportunities to recognize aspects of our public selves (Capricorn) and our relations to others (Cancer) that we had otherwise been working hard to keep out of our line of vision. It is known that there are those amongst us who, having experienced certain levels of trauma or loss, live with a muddled understanding of truth. There can be more than one truth, after all, and sometimes it can feel like there is no truth at all. While feeling the absence of truth is a valid experience, it is also a feeling, not a fact. Feelings, it appears, do not erase the impact that a lived experience has had on our psyches and our nervous systems. As for more than one truth, well, the possibility of multiple worlds and timelines has never ceased to make our world of value to us. Multiplicity can, with the right approach, be a kind of grace. What they said, what you remember, what was meant, what was assumed, what was lost between people who, lost in language, heard the ring of their own alarms over each other's words.

Between two truths or more, there is a lot of space for mercy and for whatever empathy is. Not manipulative care-taking, not emotional exhaustion-shame, and certainly not boundary-less caregiving. Rather, there is a door that opens toward love in the largest sense of the word, each of us recognizing the other's complex humanity. Each of us understanding that above all, we owe our own selves courageous witness. We owe ourselves the truth that does more than make us feel good or, conversely, allow us to wallow in self-pity so as not to take on the true work of fixing what needs fixing.

Tonight, this month, and especially these next two weeks, set an intention with yourself around truth. August is full of openings, full of chances to take bold new steps, and no one is above wanting to take them. Just do yourself a favor, reader, before you act, before you decide or decline, ask yourself: Is that true? Ask yourself this, and keep interrogating your answers, until you get as close to clarity as you can.

For example: Is it true that you don't want to spend time with this person?

No, sometimes I do want to but they make me feel anxious.

Is it true that you feel anxious?

Perhaps anxious isn't quite right, maybe I feel like they don't really want to be around me.

Is it true that they don't really want to be around you?

Your answers are valid, no matter what they are, but it is valuable to note when you hit strings of thought that rely heavily on feelings that don't carry with them a great deal of fact. It's important to note the places where the story of what might be or could have been has surpassed the present experience of what is.