Your guide to this summer’s Mercury Retrograde !
Written by Aerinn Hodges- Kolfage
It’s hot in New York, Cancer season is here, and violets are in bloom. Their purple, blue, and yellow heads bob merrily in the shade beneath much larger trees and shrubs. Planted as ornamentals around the city and beyond, violets are overlooked just as easily in magic as they are walking down the street but these pretty blooms hide some potent enchantments in a dainty package. Although sumptuous roses and weedy mugwort may be more striking or seem more magical, unobtrusive and un-exotic flowers like the violet are no less healing or sorcerous.
The violet may be any of 525 to 600 species in the genus viola. It’s a low-growing perennial and early bloomer native to Europe, Asia, and North Africa but naturalized throughout the temperate regions of North America. The violet prefers rich, moist soil and partial shade, fitting for a plant of Venus in Cancer, as it’s described by 17th century botanist and astrologer Nicholas Culpepper. This humble, little blossom is a cooling, watery ally during the Summer months and can relieve fiery tempers, nourish overheated tissue, or help us press the refresh button on our lives.
If you find yourself unable to sleep after a long day in the Sun, 16th century astrological physician Anthony Ascham suggests soaking your feet in water infused with violets and binding the herb to your temples before going to bed. A contemporary magical manuscript from the Folger Shakespeare Library, published in 2015 as the Book of Oberon, also lists violets among the ingredients of a Venusian incense. On the other hand, an old Scottish poem collected in the 18th century, has it that washing your face with violets steeped in goat’s milk was a popular method to increase a woman’s beauty and charm potential lovers:
“Anoint thy face with goat’s milk in which violets have been infused, and there is not a young prince upon earth who would not be charmed with thy beauty.”
In the classical Mediterranean world, one of the Homeric Hymns dedicated to Aphrodite calls her violet-crowned and Roman naturalist Pliny suggests wearing a garland of violets while banqueting will prevent drunkenness and diminish the effects of hangover. Maud Grieve, 19th century herbalist and educator, in the second volume of her Modern Herbal, says ancient Athenians used violet to ‘moderate anger’ and ‘comfort and strengthen the heart’, pointing to a long history of Venusian associations.
American folk magic, and African-American conjure in particular, considers violet a flower of love. A favorite working of mine, which highlights the modest but potent simplicity of popular magic, is to wear violet leaves in your right shoe to draw a new lover to you. However, heartsease, a type of violet popularly identified as a pansy, can be worked with to soothe the pains of a broken heart by bathing in an infusion of it for nine days according to Catherine Yronwode’s Hoodoo Herb and Root Magic.
In my experience, violets embody the Venusian spirit at her most romantic and sentimental, while the cardinal energy of Cancer empowers the flower to offer a fresh start like a rebirth from the waters of creation. They are especially helpful when tears need to be shed, hard hearts softened, or hot heads cooled.
Astrology by Lisa Stardust
What this week lacks in astrological transits, it certainly makes up for in intensity. We start off this week with both Mercury and Mars, who are both in sensitive Cancer, opposing Pluto, who is moving backwards in pragmatic Capricorn, on the 19th. Mercury in Cancer is a mute sign. Meaning, it’s more meditative and not openly communicative. Mars is in its fall in Cancer. It’s not in a place of strength. Pluto, even retrograde, is extreme in Capricorn. When these planets come together, we can expect an emotional volcano to collide with a tornado. Arguments, dominance, love triangles, paranoia, secrets and lies, and abuses of power now come to light, as we are tired of being constrained and manipulated by others. The lesson to be learned from this transit, is Pluto retrograde wants us to evolve. That means purging and releasing that which is not serving our highest good. Be prepared to let go of people and situations which are not healthy, as we walk down the truest path to self-discovery and actualization. Mercury enters its pre-retrograde shadow on June 20th, setting the stage for its backwards spin on July 7th. Take stock of the events that unfold on the 20th, as it will become our personal Mercury retrograde story. Neptune starts it’s retrograde journey on the 21st, creating confusion and uncertainty until November 7th. June 21st also kicks off Cancer Season and the Summer Solstice. Cancer Season 2019 will bring major emotional shifts. We must prepare ourselves for a profound Summer. Venus, who is in chatty Gemini, butts heads with Jupiter, who is retrograde in philosophical Sagittarius, giving us much to talk about surrounding matters of the heart and finances. June 24th adds mystery to Venus, when Neptune retrograde in dreamy Pisces sets off illusions to our hearts and wallets. Watch out for get rich quick scams on the 24th, as Neptune retrograde will play tricks on our minds and make us more susceptible to deceit. The flip side is that we may temporarily enjoy being caught up in the rapture—until reality sets in.
March 21-April 19
A warrior by nature, you’re used to asserting your will. However, this week you are emotionally drained and depleted of energy to argue further with others. The reason is that all the conflict and drama has gotten you nowhere. You may even feel as though you are running in circles and not mending any situations—rather, just having the same discussions on playback. While you may still feel raw and defensive from recent drama, have faith that these emotions shall pass the moment you let go of upsets. Don’t dwell and obsess over details, just move away from this bad situation.
April 20-May 20
Learning to speak your truth has been a process. Not that you are a liar (you’re far from it), but you tend to use flowery words during confrontations to avoid conflict. You’re bursting at the seems to express your sentiments after being pushed to the emotional brink for weeks. While you may choose words that shoot from the hip, try not to rush through communications. Think carefully before you speak your mind only to articulate your thoughts and to be heard. You are taking charge and fighting back. You’re the one in control of your life. Don’t you forget it.
May 21-June 20
Playing by the rules has certainly affected your confidence. While you’ve been doing the right thing and honoring ethics, you’ve noticed those who take the easy path and side step are becoming more successful than you, at a rampant pace. Before you experience a Mercurial meltdown and let this situation weigh on your confidence, note that you are walking down the righteous avenue towards self-fulfillment. You don’t need accolades and status to prove your triumphs. You’ve got something no one else has—staying power. Although it may seem you are being kicked to the curb, you’re not. Believe in yourself more.
June 21-July 22
Now is the time to use your voice to speak up. While you may have taken the silent approach to mending issues in your personal life in the past, you are learning that the only way to be heard and bring change in your life is to express (not repress) your emotions. The flip side to this week’s transits, is that you may feel as though you are receiving the backlash from others and are the victim of their emotional protections. Although it may be hard, try to rub off their influences and embrace your personal power to rise above.
July 23-August 22
Fear is standing in your way this week. Be careful, because it’s also the only thing holding you back from manifesting your desires. Recent emotional upsets have taken a toll on your heart, forcing you to question your goals and intentions. Instead of reveling in newly found insecurities, try to rise above such sentiments. First, acknowledge what you are scared of. Feel it. Realize that even the worst scenario is very likely from happening in reality. Prepare yourself to power through and attain your goals. This will help you to squash your fears and move towards your dreams, without hesitation.
August 23-Sept. 22
You’re being put to an emotional test this week, Virgo. Love has been an ever confusing sentiment for quite some time. Now, friendships are coming into question. While you’ve tried to find a balance and create space for all parties to coexist in your life, the time has come to make serious decisions about relationships. Having to choose between love and friendships will prove challenging. But, think of it this way, if someone really cares about you they won’t force you to give up a relationship. They will only want you to be happy, not aim to control your decisions.
Sept. 23-Oct. 22
The epic clash you are experiencing between the id, ego, and superego is having a toll on your psyche. Your mind and heart are being pulled in different directions, forcing you to vacillate between sentiments. All of this inner conflict may make you feel as if you are losing control of many aspects of your life. Take a momentary pause. Make a list of your desires and goals. Then, write out a plan stating how you morally want to methodically put your objectives into action. Having a plan will allow you to act strategically, not impulsively, which will guarantee success.
Oct. 23-Nov. 21
Your inner views are shifting, which is serving your transformational and transcendent needs. While you may take on an idealistic persona this week, others may prove to be unscrupulous and untrustworthy. You have no space in your heart for connivers. Rather than arguing with others who have proven unworthy, you're taking the high road this week. No more theatrical confrontations. If people wish to be deceitful, let them. You just don’t have time or space in your life for that energy anymore. Choosing to disengage from the dramatics will only elevate your vibe. Focus on yourself this week, not others.
Nov. 22-Dec. 21
In the past, you’ve been a live and let live type of person. But, recently you’ve had the urge to control others. The reason for your inner shift is that you feel out of control in your personal life, which is causing you to project your anxieties and fears on others. You are riding high on emotional extremes this week and trying to figure out your next step. Take some time for yourself to figure out how you will implement your desires into reality. Also, avoid conflicts and power struggles with others (which are looming and brewing in the air).
Dec. 22-Jan. 19
Your sensitivities are awakened this week, making you feel more partner oriented than ever. You’re now moved to give 100% to relationships, collaborations, and partnerships. The reason for your emotional heart is that you are yearning for deeper friendships and connections. Just watch out for power struggles within these relationships, as you may over-assert your opinions and dominate others. Find a balance in how you declare your views—use cheeky, not austere sentiments in your presentation to appease the crowd. This will prove your mastery and ability to woo the masses and even those close to you with your commanding words.
Jan. 20-Feb. 18
Your intuition may be playing tricks on you this week. Paranoias and fears are consuming your mind, making you feel as though others are trying to play tricks on you. Although you may convince yourself of their intentions and believe it to be true, take a step back and observe the situation more closely. Ask yourself if the facts line up with your instincts. Are your suspicions correct? If you are feeling confused and anxious about your visions, take an auric cleanse to get your sixth sense back. Then, revisit your prophecies to see if they are correct.
Feb. 19-March 20
While you desperately want to take action and movement in your life, this week will make you feel stifled and stuck in the same issues you’ve had for months. Situations aren’t advancing, which in return is making you stir crazy from the inaction. You may feel lost amongst the breakers. However, don’t disconnect from others. Reach out to friends and family for help and guidance. You don’t have to go through your emotional ups and downs alone. People want to comfort you. Let them help. Word of advice: Don’t be too proud to accept their guidance and support.
By: Lisa Stardust
The Strawberry Full Moon, occurring June 17th, offers us a time to connect to our inner truths on a deep level. The past and upcoming week’s cosmic energy is intense. During this luminary, we will have a momentary reprieve from the confusion and power struggles that have been permeating our auric fields and allow ourselves to evolve our thoughts.
The Sagittarius Moon will align with the asteroid Ixion (who rules over futurity) and softly connects with passionate asteroid Eris. Fair minded Juno and lovelorn Sedna (two other asteroids) will both form a frustrating aspect with the Moon. All together, this means that we will be cosmically tasked to assert our will and fight for our dreams—no matter what obstacles stand in our way. The only caveat, is that Neptune, who is extremely active in the sky, may create confusion around what our truest visions are. This also can mean self-deceit, which may create inner conflict, as we are not being honest with ourselves. However, there’s hope for us to reach our most idealized potential.
The degree of the Full Moon sits on the Galactic Center, which will help us understand and manifest our innermost desires. The Galactic Center falls in the middle of the entrance to the Milky Way. Sagittarius, who is the protector of our galaxy, stands on all fours at this celestial point with a bow and arrow ready to shoot at any given moment. As the defender of the galaxy, Sagittarius is touted as the high minded philosopher known to understand all worldly truths. This is because it’s important for the armed sign to know when and how to sling its arrows. The Galactic Center is a degree and place of insight. It’s the transmitter of “Divine Consciousness.” It’s a place of freedom. It’s where our hearts soar and where we can be the purest form of ourselves, with no restrictions and judgements.
Under the Strawberry Full Moon, in the sign of honorable Sagittarius, we will use smoke scrying to connect with the “other” world and find our inner truths. We will be able to decipher and clarify what we want as individuals. Only then, can we fight for our dreams.
*The Full Moon occurs June 17th at 1:30AM PST and 4:30AM EST.
Directions for Smoke Scrying
Meditate on your goal or intention.
Take a smudge stick and light it.
Place in a bowl or cauldron.
Let the smudge stick burn.
Follow the smoke with your eyes as it fills the air.
Watch the smoke dance in the air and its shadows on the wall.
Make note in a journal about the messages are receiving messages from spirits.
Interpret the images once you receive them from the universe.
Use the images to help understand your truest intention and objectives to manifest under the Full Moon.
See what’s in the stars for you this week!
The stars don’t lie… see what’s happening in the cosmos this week!
Enjoy this guide to manifesting Solar Return Magic!
HAPPY NEW MOON IN TAURUS
Channel your inner power and sensuality with this guide to celebrating Beltane.
MANIFESTATION MAGIC + FULL MOON IN LIBRA,
SEE WHAT’S IN THE STARS FOR YOU THIS WEEK…
New Moon in Aries + Ritual guide for April 5, 2019
Super Moon & Spring Equinox 2019
See What’s in the stars for you this week …
Written by Lisa Stardust
Aphrodite, the ancient Greek Goddess of Love, bestows gifts to us mortals through her wine cup, filled
with sweet nectar, known as a Love Potion. These potions both relax and stir the senses through taste.
Aphrodisiacs are edible remedies to awaken our sensual nature. While there are many aphrodisiacs around the world, we have gathered a few of the most delicious recipes for manifesting some
serious self-love vibes this Valentine’s Day, and they are all very simple to whip-up in your own kitchen!
Enhance a Romance Elixir
Looking to add some sizzle to a current romance? Damiana is an ancient plant used to relax, intensify
desires, and fire up your loins. Simply add a touch of damiana to chai tea (another aromatic aphrodisiac)
to jump-start your libido. The spicy elixir will turn up the heat and open up your sacral chakra by calming
your body. Your shakti will be heightened with a lovely cup of tea. You can also work with fire if you are
so inclined. Smoke damiana mixed with mullein and lavender or rose petals to arouse the senses.
Catch a New Love Potion
Make your own Love Potion No. 9! Forget smoky witchy potions seen on the silver screen. The best
aphrodisiac to bring in a new love are figs. Discovered in the Garden of Eden, figs are considered the first
forbidden fruit. Known as Cleopatra’s favorite food, ingesting figs can lure unsuspecting objects of desire
to you. After all, Cleopatra brought men to their knees, presumably from eating this sensual fruit.
Delight in the succulent sweetness of food this Valentine's Day and catch a new love--by eating some
sexy fruit, perhaps dipped in your rose vanilla honey or vanilla whipped cream!
Oscar Wilde said, “to love oneself is the beginning of a lifelong romance.” This couldn’t be more true,
especially on Valentine’s Day. Instead of focusing your intention on manifesting new love, try to
cultivate a romance with yourself. Treat yourself to a “honeymoon” this holiday, by creating a delicious
jam consisting of crushed rose petals, raw honey, and vanilla bean. Blend these these three delicious
ingredients together in a bowl and let your taste buds inspire self-love. While roses are not an
aphrodisiac per say, they help strengthen and heal the heart chakra, which is powerful and radiates
from our center outward to help us manifest love in all forms. Honey and vanilla are the key elements in
this love potion. Considered the “love drug” of all love drugs, honey arouses the mind and acts as a tonic
to remind us all of the sweetness in life. Good quality honey is recommended for the most luscious
effect. Vanilla is mood enhancer that stimulates the body through soft fragrant senses. This edible
aphrodisiac serves as a road opener to awaken and protect the heart while boosting self esteem.
Remember, the most important romance is the one you have with yourself--try to nurture YOUR heart
and fall back in love with YOURSELF!
Sensual sweetening spells for this Valentine’s Day.
Our most sensual Venusian inspired playlist for magic and seduction this Valentine’s 2019.
Meet the goddess Ewok Gia.
The perfect uncrossing ritual to bring in your New Year.
By: Lisa Stardust
The Cancer Full Moon occurs less than 24 hours after the Winter Solstice, illuminating the sky with light right after the darkest and longest day of the year. With the juxtaposing energies at play, we will experience spiritual and emotional awakenings as we honor the rebirth of the Sun and the Full Moon at the same time.
The line between the spiritual and psychical world will be thinned, as the Moons glow will enlighten us all to the secrets of the universe, allowing us to see clearly, without hesitations. The veil between realms will be thinner than usual, turning on our intuition and raising vulnerabilities to psychic attacks, emotional meltdowns, exhaustion, and anxiety. The most sensitive tipping point occurs at the exact time of the Full Moon, which is why emotional healing and protection is essential during this particular luminary. The Grand Water Trine occurring the day before the Full Moon (during the Solstice) will make us extra absorbent, by picking up the energies of others (by way of sentimental Venus and delicate Neptune).
The Cancer Full Moon gives us the opportunity to mend loose ends and close chapters in our lives, as we head into new season and year. As the second Full Moon in Cancer this year (the first one occurred January 1st) we are emotionally releasing all the upsets, grief, anger, and pain we have felt since New Year’s Day 2018, giving us the strength to enter a new season and new year with a clean slate.
Creating a purifying salt bath (to purify our aura), filled with eucalyptus (to aid in healing emotional ailments), lavender (to help us relax), rose quartz (to mend our hearts and confidence), amethyst (to revive and treat our emotional upsets), and moonstone (to evoke the Moon Goddess in balancing out our best emotions) will boost our auric field and attune our inner vibration, allowing us to release old sentiments by cleansing our body, mind, and sprit under this luminary.
*The Cancer Full Moon occurs December 22nd at 9:48AM PST and 12:48PM EST
-6 drops of Eucalyptus Oil or Eucalyptus Leaves
-4 Lavender Oil or Fresh Lavender
-Himalayan Sea Salt, Epson Salt, or Kosher Salt
-Place rose quartz, amethyst, and moonstone in a cup of water. Charge a cup of water under the Moon’s glow during the day. You can leave the cup by the window sill to absorb the lunar energy.
-Run a warm bath.
-Put a cup of salt in the bath.
-Place 6 drops of eucalyptus oil or leaves in bath (the number 2 is the numerological number of the Moon, therefore, we are using even numbers to honor the Moon Goddess).
-Place 4 drops of lavender oil or flowers in bath.
-Add the rose quartz, amethyst, and moonstone to water.
-Enter bath and close your eyes, meditating on the stillness of your mind and the warmth of the water.
-Put on soothing music, lay in the bath. Let the water heal your mind, body, spirit, and heart by washing away the pain and frustrations you feel within.