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Leo New Moon 2023: Insights & Ritual


face of a lion faded and illustration of person placing their hand on their heart faded in the back. Words read: Leo New Moon, Insights & Ritual

The New Moon in LEO will grace the sky on August 16th reaching peak illumination at 5:38am ET.


This blog post covers all you need to know about the New Moon in Leo along with a simple and meaningful ritual for you to deepen your nature spirituality practice.


In this blog post you will find:


Introduction: Moon 101


The sun and moon are in a cyclical relationship as they weave through the seasons of the zodiac. This celestial dance provides us with an intuitive road map to explore our own inner/outer journey as we too make our way through the ebb and flow of nature's seasons and come into new and ever-changing dimensions of our lives.


While the sun is ruler of the day and influences our "outer" expression in the world, it is to no surprise that as ruler of the tides and queen of the night the moon is also ruler of our emotions and "inner" felt experience. Our emotions have long been associated with representations of water and the sea: fluid, ever-changing, ebbing and flowing. As the moon pulls at the tides, we also experience this influencing force on our emotions, desires, shadow realms, fears/worries, psyche, and dreams.


Self-knowledge arises through a process of uncovering hidden layers of self through revelation and integration. This process is mirrored in the ebb and flow of the moon which is why it's something we learn to observe and track. As the light of the moon waxes, more of what lies hidden becomes revealed - our deeper motivations, mechanisms, and feelings. As the light of the moon wanes, we are given time to integrate these new learnings and discoveries.


This New Moon falls within the sign of Leo. Keep reading to learn how you can use this moon portal to explore new dimensions of self seeking expression in the world.



Leo Insights


Leo Qualities: Strength, leadership, sovereignty, power, humility (ego, courage, determination, direction, purpose)


The New Moon in Leo is all about SELF LOVE, nurturing your inner life and and tending to your creative fire. The symbol for Leo is a lion which carries strong associations. Take a moment to consider what those associations are for yourself. What thoughts, feelings or images come to mind when you envision a lion? What qualities does a lion have that you admire? For many, lion's represent dignity, power and strength. When we attune to the energy of the Leo New Moon, we are invoking these qualities.


Let's go a little deeper. What do we mean when we talk about power and strength? We must be very thoughtful about this because under colonial capitalism we have been conditioned to believe that power lies outside of ourselves, that power comes from hoarding wealth, climbing the class ladder, or feeling superior to others. This is false power. True power comes from within and has to do with character and living in alignment with your values. It's about embodying your truth and living in accordance with nature's wisdom.


When we are rooted in our power, we are sourcing that power from within us and our connection to the loving force of the universe. We nurture this self-love when we create space in our lives to rest or slow down, have fun, try new things, make art, take new risks and enjoy the beauty available to us. We do things that nurture self-confidence, that inspire our creativity and that connect us to a feeling of abundance. Nurturing inner love and abundance prepares us to give of ourselves generously to others and to shine our light into the world.


When you create space in your life to do the things that turn you on you begin to ooze that natural spark of life and confidence that all true leaders have. Not the kind that desperately wants to be seen or that puts others down, rather the kind that lifts others up. Being around people with healthy Leo energy feels good. With this potent Leo energy we can make significant changes in our lives that will benefit us and others well beyond this Moon cycle.



New Moon Energy


Since the moon is the closest "planet" to Earth, this satellite zips around the zodiac very quickly, completing its round in less than a month. Actually, the entire trip takes 29.53 days, to be exact, and is measured from one “New Moon” to the next. We call this a lunation or lunar cycle.


So, this New Moon in Leo marks the beginning of another lunar cycle. During a New Moon, the moon is sitting between the Earth and the Sun, hence the Sun is shining on the side of the moon we never see. Both the Moon and Sun are in the same Zodiac sign during a New Moon forming a conjunction, which means that the influencing energies are united and enhance the other. In this case, both the sun and moon are conjunct in the sign of Leo.


You can think of the New Moon phase as the point of beginning again or returning to the conception stage of the lunar cycle. The darkness of the new moon represents fertile ground. New moon energy is a time for introspection, heightened intuition, surrendering to the unknown, releasing what no longer serves you, opening to magic and conjuring visions. At this time, you can plant your dream seeds or set intentions by consciously focusing on the "feeling' of your hearts' desires.



What you need to know about Leo


THE FIXED CROSS

Wheel of the zodiac featuring 12 signs and 6 spokes. Two spokes are highlighted green, representing the fixed cross which point to Leo, Aquarius and Scorpio and Taurus.
Fixed Cross highlighting Leo

This Fixed Cross (highlight in green) is one of the three zodiacal crosses. The Fixed Cross represents the

conscious development of awareness and the growth process.


"Fixed signs are still and inward, drawing energy to themselves rather than thrusting outward. They correspond elementally to water and geometrically to the in-drawing circle."

- Vicki Noble, Motherpeace


Leo is the fixed fire sign (circled in the diagram here), opposing it is the fixed air sign of Aquarius which creates one of the axis of the Fixed Cross. The two masculine elements (Air and Fire) always create an axis and the two feminine elements (Water and Earth) create the other axis. Each cross contains each of the four elements. In this case the fixed signs are represented by: Leo (fire), Aquarius (air), Taurus (earth), and Scorpio (water).



ELEMENT: FIRE


Fire is the element of transformation, death and rebirth, destruction and creation, purification and passion.


"Fire is also associated with light, as it often serves as a beacon in the darkness. Fire only exists in the destruction of other materials; therefore it is known as both a creator and destroyer. We often use phrases such as the 'spark of an idea' or the 'flame of desire', because fire is connected to the vitality of our life force. And when that flame is ignited within us, it gives us fuel to move forward." - Kayla White



RULING PLANET: SUN


Leo is ruled by the Sun. The Sun represents the active, engaging, life-giving force of self. It is the ruler of our ego, will, creative force, and conscious mind. The sun illuminates, gives us the ability to see clearly and nourishes all life.



CONSTELLATION


Leo is a great constellation to find in the Spring night sky on the northern half of the world — particularly in late March, April and May. Leo appears in the early evening and is visible for most of the night.


According to EarthSky, you can find this constellation by:


"Finding the bright star Regulus, then trace out a distinctive pattern of stars shaped like a backwards question mark, known as The Sickle. This pattern represents the Lion’s mane.Remember, you are looking for a backwards question mark pattern. Leo’s brightest star, Regulus is a sparkling blue-white beauty of a star, located at the bottom of the backwards question mark pattern. Regulus depicts the Lion’s heart."



Leo Ritual Elements



Leo New Moon Ritual


What You'll Need


1. Elements for your altar. Drawing on the Leo Ritual Elements above, consider what you might want to bring to your altar. Start simple. There is absolutely no need to go out and "buy" altar items. This is something that we encourage you to unlearn. Everything we need is within us and can be found around us. A simple candle will do, or a yellow flower for example.


2. Candle & lighter for the eco-somatic practice


3. Journal & something to write with for the journaling portion.



Important Considerations & Prep


1. RIGHT RELATIONSHIP: being in right relationship with your spiritual practice means approaching each aspect with humility, curiosity and reverence. This includes checking yourself on the nature of how you relate to "objects" as things and the process itself.

  • For example, if you feel called to stones as part of your ritual, consider WHY first. Then contemplate the impact of whatever action comes next. For example, instead of mindlessly purchasing cheap precious stones from somewhere like amazon.com (which have more than likely been harmfully mined/extracted and then shipped across the world as part of the consumer machine that's destroying our planet), perhaps part of your spiritual practice is to resist such a prompting and instead take the time to go for a mindful walk in your backyard, or a nearby stream and see if the right stone presents itself to you.


2. CLEANSE & PURIFY YOUR SPACE: Cleansing, also known as purification, is the practice of clearing out and releasing negative energy from your space, as well as energy that’s just old, stale, stagnant, or no longer serving you. Here are a few different methods:

  • Physical cleaning: dusting, vacuuming, opening windows for fresh air

  • Salt: a common element used for purification and protection in many different cultures. To use, simply sprinkle salt along doorways and windowsills to protect them from negative energy entering or just keep a small bowl of salt on your altar or nearby surface.

  • Smoke cleansing: light incense or burn a bundle of dried herbs such as rosemary, cedar, or mugwort. Choose plants that you have grown yourself or that grow abundantly wild nearby, plants that you have ancestral tied to or just those that have been grown and harvested ethically.

NOTE: If you do not have meaningful/authentic relationships to Indigenous culture and customs, "smudging" with white sage cultural appropriation and is dishonoring to Indigenous nations across Turtle island. It is important to understand that smudging is not just about burning sage to purify the negative energy from your space but is a sacred ritual that is culturally specific to tribes such as the Lakota Sioux, Comanche, Cheyenne, Arapaho, and Navajo. If you have been gifted sage by an Indigenous friend, use to your discretion in how to engage with this medicine. This sacred plant is being abused, exploited and mass-harvested for commercial and consumer use which perpetuates the violence of white supremacy and settler colonialism. Take some time to locate yourself within a settler-colonial context interwoven with the land you currently occupy. Check out Native Land to learn the name and more about the territories you occupy.


3. CLEANSE & PURIFY YOUR BODYMIND

  • Take a shower our bath; visualize any negative energy that has accumulated in your auric field to be washed away as the water goes down the drain.

  • Meditate, center and take some time to ground in stillness and embodied presence.

  • Write or speak your intentions for your ritual out loud


4. BE MINDFUL & STRIVE FOR INTEGRITY ALWAYS.



Altar Creation


Creating an altar is optional. Altar tending is a beautiful practice, especially if you have a designated area in your home that you can tend to over the course of each moon and seasonal cycle.


Tending to an altar is an intentional practice that supports your exploration of nature spirituality and carries the potential to deepen your relationship to the energetic archetypes of each moon cycle.


To set up your altar, simply play with any number of the ritual elements offered above in the chart by using symbols, colors, precious gemstones, symbolism, etc.


There is no right or wrong way to go about creating, tending or being with your altar, however we do not condone cultural appropriation or theft of any kind.



Eco-Somatic Practice: Flame Gazing


For this eco-somatic we will be drawing on the element of FIRE since Leo is a fire sign. To amplify your connection to earth energy, perform this part of the ritual under the open sky (if it's not too windy) or next to a window.


MATERIALS: match or lighter, and candle (preferably one that is visible like a tea light).


STEPS:

  • Begin by finding a comfortable sitting posture that allows you to gaze into the flame without straining your body or neck in any way. Allow your face muscles to soften as you gaze into the candle flame in silence.

  • As you gaze into the flame, allow your breath to be natural as you inhale and exhale, noticing the rise and fall of your breath as the candle flame gently moves in accordance with the atmosphere. Notice how you move with your breath simultaneously.

  • Then bring your gaze to the base of the candle where the wick meets the flame. Take a moment to contemplate the relationship that fire has with earth and the ground. Then begin to sense the grounding contact you're making with the earth. Allow yourself to sense the stability that earth provides and your relationship to gravity as you gaze at the base of the flame.

  • Now allow your gaze to penetrate the heart of the flame where it is most dense. As you do this, sense the source of your own inner light within your heart space. Take a moment to contemplate light as the source of life, the sun and your own heart. Breathe into your heart as you do.

  • When you feel complete with flame gazing, allow your gaze to shift to the darkness of night or close your eyes to sense and be with the image of your own inner flame. You might still see the silhouette of the flame even as your eyes are closed. Simply breath and be here for as long as you desire.


Journaling

  • What images, thoughts or sensations came up for you in the flame gazing activity? Take some time to reflect on anything you'd like to hold onto.

Self-reflection questions:

  • What does it look or feel like to shine my light?

  • In what ways can I imagine expressing myself creatively over the next month?

  • What does self-love in this season look like for me right now?

  • Where can I extend compassion and offer my gifts in generous, life-giving ways?

Finish the following sentences:

  • I am most proud of myself for...

  • I feel truly seen when...

  • I feel most confident when...


Reading



"Ancient sun, eternally young,

giver of life and source of energy,

in coal and oil, in planet and wind and tider,

in spiritual light and human embrace,

You kindle the heavens, you shine within us,

(for we are suns with hearts afire --

we light the world as you light the sky

and find clouds within whose shadows are dark);

We give thanks for your rays..."


- Congregation of Abraxas






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