Full Moon Illumination

March 31st, 2011

Hello, friends.

I’m writing this post experimenting with OmmWriter, a desktop tool that a friend told me about.  One thing I like about it right away is that it allows you to write with your whole screen; all of the little bars, buttons, tabs, search fields, etc., etc., etc., are gone.  It’s like having a blank piece of paper in front of you.  There are different background styles; the one I’m using now looks like a light blue sky on a snowy day with a few bare trees across the bottom.  Very calm.  There is also soft music playing in the background, which is supposedly better with earphones.  With my good earphones at home in the U.S. and me in England, I only have the pair I bring to watch movies on the plane, which unfortunately are in several pieces having fallen apart on the way over.

March 19, 2011, Super Full Moon in Virgo. (Source:Wikimedia Commons)

I want to share a dream I had at the last Full Moon to demonstrate a few different things:  the power of the unconscious to aid our learning of astrology (the unconscious loves astrology!); the actual content of the dream which illuminated an aspect of astrology that was fairly mute for me; the power of the Full Moon to bring something to light; and the reciprocal relationships between two houses in the birth chart.

The Dream

(Uh, oh.  Here I run into one of my first things I don’t like about OmmWriter.  I often write with two pages open on my screen: one with the facts, figures, times, dates, etc. to the left and my actual writing page to the right.  This way I can glance back and forth between them, checking information as I go along.  As far as I can tell, I can’t do this with OmmWriter.  I wrote this dream down as soon as I woke up last week so I’d like to have it right here to refer to, rather than having to toggle back and forth.)

I dreamed about my father’s brother who we used to call Uncle Pal.  Uncle Pal passed away a couple of years ago and I hadn’t spoken to him in many years although I loved him dearly when I was a child.  The dream definitely felt like it was set in an in-between place, not in this world.  I was asking him questions about my father when they were boys.  I asked him how it was to grow up with a mother in and out of the hospital with tuberculosis.  I asked him if my father had always been so unhappy, whether he had displayed this when they were children or did it come later in life?  We went on to talk about how I couldn’t ask my father these questions myself because by the time I was old enough to have them I had been banished from my father’s house for a string of things he disagreed with.

Virgo laborers, Master of the Housebook, Anonymous. (Source:Wikimedia Commons)

My uncle told me in the dream that since he was six years younger than my father he didn’t know whether my father was unhappy as a child.  He said there were many people around to take care of them and that my father took care of him.  He also told me that he spoke to my mother and father several times on my behalf, trying to encourage them to bring me back into the family.

Then in the dream my Uncle was smoking opium or marijuana and was angry with me for not sharing my spiritual knowledge with him.  He told me that I had found the answers he was looking for and that I was withholding them from him.  I realized I couldn’t really put into words what I knew, that it wasn’t on the level of words.  He continued to insist that it was my responsibility to figure out how to share it with him; he had shared what he knew with me and now it was my turn to share what I know with him.

The Astrology

This dream came on the night of the Super Full Moon in Virgo with the Sun in Pisces.  Virgo is on the cusp of my fourth house, with the opposite sign, Pisces, on the cusp of my tenth house.  So this Full Moon straddled my fourth and tenth houses.

The fourth house governs our roots, our ancestors, our family of origin.  The tenth house governs the role each of us play in the world.  The fourth house is the very bottom of the chart and represents your base of operations, the shoulders you stand on to make your own mark in the outer world of the tenth.  In the dream my uncle addressed both houses:  the fourth-this is your family legacy, and the tenth-this is your responsibility to give.

When I woke up I started thinking about my ancestors, something I have seldom done.  On both sides of my family there is a striking Virgo influence.  On my mother’s side, my Irish grandfather was a bookkeeper and payroll clerk in the coal mines of Pennsylvania; my mother and my aunts were bookkeepers.  On my father’s side, my father and uncle were scientists and academicians, and my uncle was also a writer.  My grandfather was an Italian immigrant building contractor.    Workers all, and specifically work ruled by the sign Virgo: work requiring specificity, a mind for details, and organizational ability. And work that yielded concrete outcomes.

Pisces Dreamers, Master of the Housebook, Anonymous. (Source:Wikimedia Commons)

I could see in the dream how my becoming a CPA was directly in the lineage of my ancestors.  There is a family ethic of hard work and engaging in the daily duty of life to provide for and sustain others.  None of these people were wastrels; nor were they artists, or entrepreneurs, or politicians, or wealthy.  They were grounded laborers working with their minds with a family history of having left their homelands for the opportunity to work in America.  And I have been such a worker too.  As a young mother I took on the responsibility of providing for my son with ease and without support from my family.  I never chafed at the routine of day-to-day work; instead I relished it and still do, sitting at my desk day after day.  These indeed are my roots.  But who am I?

My uncle seemed to address this question in the dream, too.  With Pisces on the cusp of my 10th house, the house of our most public face engaged with the most mystical sign, he seemed to be saying, your gift is your spiritual knowledge, why are you not sharing it?  With the tools from my family, earnest work, specificity, and articulation, I can navigate and articulate the shadowy mists of the Pisces realm.  And if I don’t, then I leave others to try to find their own way, which can lead in unhealthy directions like drug use and escapism (remember he was smoking opium or marijuana.)

Full Moon Dreaming

I can’t overstate the impact of this dream and my appreciation for the tool of astrology to interpret it.  The astrological literature says that the fourth house can be relatively unconscious in a person’s understanding of themselves.  Most of the other houses are much more engaged with others and their meaning is apparent as we see our actions reflected in and impacting other people.  But the fourth house is the most private part, the midnight side.  I’ve done a fair amount of reflection about my early childhood family; I’ve had to!  But the context of the ancestral family and the themes that run through it, and how those themes support my own contribution but do not define it; this dream brought all this to light – illuminated it, like the Sun illuminates the Moon completely at the Full Moon.

One more point:  my mother has the same Virgo/Pisces 4th/10th configuration, as do I, as does my son.  Hmmmmm.  Passing this along through the generations?  Are we mimicking our family customs rather than bringing our own contribution to the world?  Who will break the chain?

You can use this dream in two ways.  First you can look at where you have the Virgo/Pisces dichotomy and see if you can see how the earthy, grounded Virgo energy and the ethereal, mystical Pisces energy balance and inform two houses in your natal chart.  Or you can look at the signs on the cusp of your 4th and 10th house and see if one describes your family archetype and one describes your ultimate intention for your work in the world.

What’s on the cusp of your fourth house?  Have you worked much with your family archetype?  Let us know what you’ve discovered in the comments.  Perhaps in future posts we can look at each pair to see what it reveals.

My OmmWriter Test

As for OmmWriter, I found it nice for writing but I prefer MS Word for editing.  Of course, I only played with the free version.  There is a very inexpensive upgrade that may have more features.  Have you tried it?  What do you think?

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14 Responses to “Full Moon Illumination”

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  3. Natalie says:

    Hi Ellen. Thank you so much for sharing this. I’m really sorry you’ve had such a bad time with your family. I can certainly relate. I am sitting here with a “blackmail” letter from my aunt. She claims it’s her dream before she dies to reunite me with my mother (will not happen). It’s interesting how this comes up now, when my 4th house is so lit up by the Uranus transit. It’s opp Mercury in Libra – and how fitting that a suprise like that would come in an old-fashioned letter!
    Your post put my thoughts into words, about what the 4th house means. Pisces is on the cusp of my 4th house, and in my family there’s been a tradition of going to sea. On my father’s side sailors and teachers, on my mother’s side craftsmen and sailors. Except for the women who were homemakers and mothers, of course. I left home when I was 18, and haven’t looked back much. I didn’t want to. Then my father died this Dec, and I had to go back. It was interesting, and I certainly learned more about my family and roots than I had before. All very good in some ways, and not so much in others. In my family there’s lots of Virgo-Pisces-Scorpio, which translates to a lot of resentful hard workers, I guess. One of the things that became very clear to me, was that I was right to leave and never come back. Everyone was exactly the same, only older! I know I wouldn’t have been a writer if I had stayed. I had to break the family bond to become what I wanted to be.
    (I checked the charts of a few family members when I read this – I don’t have their birth time, only dates. Thanks to you, I discovered my grandfathers sun was conj mine, and that he had Mercury in exactly the same place as me. No wonder we got along! )
    Happy spring in London!

    • EllenL says:

      Thanks for your comment, Natalie. It gives a lot of food for thought. You and I have opposite 4/10 cusps. Seems like out of the Pisces soup to articulation and specificity for you, and out of specificity and boundaries into the boundless for me. In both cases, nice to have a balance between them, right? I’m glad you discovered your grandfather’s relationship to your chart. Family astrology is so interesting to me. If I had the time, that would be my next blog them, astro4families.com.

  4. Ellen, I have only checked in on this blog a few times,but the title on the FB notification caught my eye since I am a full moon gazer. Your dream was not only illuminating to you but to me as well. I believe that dreams can be enlightening and sometimes prophetic. Sometimes just an opportunity for your brain to dump random impressions. I admit, I haven’t been too sure what I think about astrology so your references to those markers and interpretations go over my head. But your question “But who am I?” has been an obsession lately. Not so much in a spiritual way but in physical/geographical sense. That is a long discussion. I have a a question for you though…do we have a responsibility to pass on spiritual knowledge/discoveries to others when those things may not be universal, but only personal? And if you do, do you have responsibility for the results of that sharing? Best regards, Mike

    • admin says:

      Hi, Michael, and welcome. Your question is one of the aspects raised in the dream, do we have a responsibility to pass on our knowledge? I’m certainly working on discovering the answer to this question, too. But one thing I would say is that true spiritual knowledge is never personal, right? It may come from a personal experience but it has its roots in a realm that we all share in common. And I think that those that hear it can recognize the truth in it, even if they can’t relate to the particular situation. I even think if the person rejects it, and it’s the truth, that it will plant a seed in them that will unfold later when they are more ready to understand.

      Your second question, about whether we have responsibility for the results of the sharing – I think I’d like to hear more about that and think about it more too. If it’s not too personal, can you tell us more about it?

    • admin says:

      Hi, Michael, again. I just thought of something else. The spiritual understanding we reach is not given to us personally, is it? I don’t think it’s just for our own private enjoyment. If we can’t or don’t share it, it’s like hoarding something that’s not even ours. So in that sense, too, it’s our responsibility to pass it on.

  5. Tesa says:

    So interesting! I love dreams…. i wish i could live there sometimes… I love when people share their dreams too, thank you!

    If I am reading my chart correctly, Scorpio is on the cusp of my 4th house and Taurus on the 10th. I have been thinking a lot lately about working with the ancestors, and I feel intensely called to participate in an indigenous African “Purifying Fire Ritual” this Summer that calls upon the Ancestors.

    I’ve been giving this a lot of thought….. and it’s true what you said, I am not conscious (yet) as to the meaning of the houses in my life…. especially Scorpio, so mysterious and deep! But my family has a lot of Scorpio and I think it is significant. I have recently had the thought that my whole immediate family may have the Eagle as totem (a Scorpio symbol), though I can’t articulate what this means yes, perhaps I can sort of feel it…

    Lately too I have been thinking a lot about my own life path. As much as I love academia, I am starting to feel that my life’s work may have more to do (at least for now) with reconnecting with Nature, with the feminine archetype (which, unfortunately, institutions of higher learning are not really in tune with… at least in my understanding) and bringing this more to light somehow… simple. Taurean?

    Cool stuff. Mind-stretching stuff……. and yes, my subconscious is ALL ABOUT IT!

    ps- you have been so prolific so far this trip to England! woohoo!! I’m loving it.

    • admin says:

      I know, Tesa, I’ve been so prolific over the past week or so, even with Mercury retrograde. I think it’s all that Aries energy, with good old Saturn giving discipline and perseverance. I’m having a ball!

      That sounds so cool about the Ritual you may participate in this summer. I hope you’ll tell us about it. And the eagle, too, the one that soars high above but can see everything so clearly. I love that symbol, having quite a bit of Scorpio in my chart too. And Taurus does describe the life’s work you outlined… thanks for commenting and as you discover more I hope you’ll keep us up to date.

  6. ruth says:

    Well, I sent you a private facebook message. Rather lengthy, I may add. I think the dream is very enlightening, and that you have interpreted it correctly. Now, to explore my 4th house. (Can you provide a little direction?)

  7. Thank you for this post! AND, you’re right about Ommwriter. It’s not meant for editing or formatting. That’s why I like it. It really allows me to focus on and stay with the writing itself. Then, I past it into the blog post tool, or Word, or email – and do the formatting. I’m sort of impressed with their holding to the simplicity of the product (definitely going against the current grain). I’ve seen them answer questions about why they don’t include this or that formating/editing tool – and they said they don’t want to get into “function creep.” Interesting. But definitely a different way of working/writing. Glad you tried it! And cool to see your experience mixed here with your post! Happy writing in whatever tool works for you – your posts are great and so interesting.

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