Today’s blog post is a long one and a bit about astrology, one of my main passions! And why not? It’s a full moon tonight! It’s a supermoon in fact. In Jyotish or Vedic astrology, it is a full moon in the Nakshatra or star Chitra. It is considered an auspicious meeting of the full moon and this star. According to the Cosmic Insights app, it is a time for creativity, healing, and giving charitably. We also saw the start of the Vedic New Year April 11-12th, 2021—Plava New Year. (Rosen, “Vedic New Year”) This is also the start of new ventures in terms of health. Here’s hoping for a more prosperous season for everyone, for healing, and renewal. After the turbulent upheaval of the pandemic and the socio-economic impact on the world, hope is something we all need. The Plava New Year is also associated with the pelican, among other meanings. This bird is a representation of hardiness and perseverance. While there is a move towards renewal, it is not without discomfort. 2021 is proving to be challenging regardless of strides made overall. But without the dark night of the soul, we cannot enter the new phase. So, the year of the Hierophant (as mentioned in my earlier Tarot blogposts) is an energy we can tap into as well as we navigate new territories. Our personal orthodoxy may be where we create spiritual traditions of our own. Things may be uncharted—but they are a blank slate. Jupiter and Saturn returns are taking place for a lot of us—Our Guru (Jupiter) and Karma (Saturn) teachers if you will. But now, we will look at some differences between tropical and sidereal astrology below and then move on to full moon energies.
What are some differences between tropical and Western astrology and Vedic and sidereal? The main factor is that sidereal astrology uses stellar positions and fixed stars to calculate the starting point of spring. Vedic astrology also adjusts to the Earth’s wobble—an astronomical phenomenon that takes about 25,926 years to complete. (Armstrong 38) In this case, the equinox appears to move backward or what we refer to as the Precession of the Equinoxes. The first day of spring is thus measured not in Aries, but in Pisces. Claudius Ptolemy, who lived around 100-170 CE, wrote texts on astrology and correctly calculated the first day of spring in Aries for that time period. Tropical astrology did not change the stellar positions from this point. We aren’t sure why Ptolemy’s work was unchanged. One theory is that perhaps, something was lost in translation—lost in libraries burnt down such as the famous one in Alexandria. We also know now that astrological books and materials were translated by the Catholic Church and other similar organizations without any alterations to the texts. (Armstrong 47) What we can surmise is that our ancients may not have had the time to calibrate and adjust to astronomical phenomena before their work was lost to us. (Armstrong 38-48)
Another difference is that while the definition of your sign in tropical astrology is based on the sun sign, Jyotish looks at the moon constellation first. The thing to note is that while the sun spends time in a constellation (sign) for approximately 28-30 days, the moon constellation or sign at the time of your birth as well as the ascendant are unique to your natal chart. So, we tend to prioritize those in Jyotish—especially the moon because that is considered the reflection of your soul. You can check to see how these planetary and stellar energies affect your Vedic moon. And finally, one of the biggest differences is that we work with 27 or 28 lunar mansions or constellations known as Nakshatras. It’s sometimes translated as constellations or stars which are correct, but they are not the 12 zodiac signs. I take all of this into account when discussing astrology in general. However, this is in NO WAY meant to demean Western and tropical astrology. There are obviously cultural differences that affect astrological beliefs. This is more of an explanation as to the methods with which I am most familiar. I’m also interested in the connections between mathematics, astronomy, and astrology. I’ve always found that math to be a magickal language on its own. And Jyotish just gives me more confirmation. With that, let’s move on to the full moon now!
The Full Moon, or the Pink Supermoon this month is a particularly beautiful one. Not only is the view from our stationary relativity lovely and reflective of a pinkish tinge, but it also appears closer to us. Aesthetics aside, from a psychic standpoint, this is about healing, especially in matters of physical and mental health—and particularly for those who are very open to energy—a psychic cleansing may be necessary. My view is that the full moon gives us a chance to connect with our reflections. This full moon as per Jyotish calculations via the Cosmic Insights app puts us in Libra and Virgo—mainly Libra. In tropical astrology, it is Scorpio. The constellations represent balance and the maiden. I interpret this as having a dialogue with the innocent half of yourself—the child that has not formed the adult judgments of today. Some other questions to think about: Do you see the person you are or the person you want to be when you gaze upon your reflection? Who influences you most, yourself or someone else? This is an extremely important question to answer, because ironically, we often spend time internalizing the externalities.
Let’s think about what we take in first. We know our intake of food and water are crucial to our survival. We pay attention to what eat in terms of protein, fats, carbohydrates, etc. We look for ways to help our bodies stay strong and resilient. Do we think about what we take in emotionally? What kinds of books do we read? How much time do we spend on social media? What do we “scroll” through? It is equally important to be mindful of the content we absorb mentally, psychically, and emotionally. Let me first say that I do not advocate giving up leisurely activities or your favorite shows. That’s not what this is about. I however invite you to take time off this full moon. Try reading something that brings you hope. Look at good news websites and watch something hopeful. Reflect on this in a journal. Think about the kind of healing you’d like to see in your life. Craft something that depicts your goal for the next two months. Get creative. Think about the kind of steps towards renewal you expect to see this week and next week.
With that, here is to well wishes all around. Thank you for making it this far! Please note that this is my understanding of Jyotish as I am still studying it. My final thoughts are: we know that we are still in the thick of it, but we can overcome these difficulties. Next blog post will be a surprise! And below are my references. Blessings to all. Namaste. With love, the Foxy Witch.
Armstrong, Jeffrey. God Goddess the Astrologer. Vasa Publishing, 2018.
Rosen, Barry. “Vedic New Year: The year of Plava April 11th, 2021- April 2nd, 2022 Part 1.” http://www.appliedvedicastrology.com/2021/04/09/vedic-new-year-the-year-of-plava-april-11-2021-april-2-2022/. Accessed April 26th, 2021.
Cosmic Insights Astrology. GMan Labs Limited Liability Company. Version 7.3.1. www.app.cosmicinsights.net. Accessed April 26th, 2021.