July Tarotscopes with Brandon Alter
By Brandon Alter:
Let’s take stock of where we’ve been, shall we? Aries energy taught us about action. Taurus Season taught us how to grow that action into something of value. Gemini is teaching us who we are as a result of those values and demanding that we speak up for them. Then comes Cancer, when we settle in and feel our progress so far. As the fourth sign of the Zodiac and our first water sign, Cancer Season signifies our first of three completions in the wheel of the year. The second completion is Scorpio Season, time of death and mystery. The final completion is the end of the Cosmic Wheel, Pisces Season, where we glimpse the collective unconscious and are reborn. Four is a number traditionally associated with foundation; there are four directions, four seasons, four elements. Simply put, Cancer Season is an important inner pitstop on our journey through the stars. It is here we can allow ourselves to feel into what has already transpired and gather up the emotional fortitude to carry on.
I’m always looking to “real world” events to see how the Astrological energy is playing out, but 2020 is giving it to us so by the book that it’s hard to doubt the validity of this ancient system. We knew there was going to be a major reckoning because of January’s Saturn/Pluto conjunction in Capricorn. We just didn’t know how that was going to reveal itself. Now we know. The virus isn’t the enemy, it’s the catalyst for our evolution. It’s helping us see how cracked our foundations really are. Saturn is the planet of tough love, pushing us to take responsibility; Pluto is the Angel of Death who wants to assist us in letting go. We are watching this all play out in real time, a global deep-soul-transformation in the sign of the Patriarchy/Authority/Structure. This is all heightened by the necessary light being shone upon racism in our society. And it all feels even more intense here, in the United States, because we are also in the midst of our Pluto return, a truly significant event—Pluto takes 247 years to make its way around the Zodiac. When Pluto returns to the place it began (in this case the place it was when America was born), it feels like death because it is a death of everything that isn’t true; and thank Goddess, since some of this should've died long ago!
So what the fuck are we supposed to do with all this information and energy? Well, babies, it’s a long game. There are no quick fixes here. That’s exactly why we need Cancer Season so badly, so that we can integrate and process what’s transpired so far. Aries Season was our scramble for a new way of life in the midst of a global pandemic; we had to become our own leaders as a result of a deeply ineffective and fractured government revealing just how fractured and ineffective it really is. Taurus Season had us hunkering down and digging in, looking at how to take care of ourselves based on our deepest values and learning what really matters in our lives. Gemini Season has been an empowering opportunity to use our voices to protest against a brutal legacy of racial injustice and systemic prejudice. And while you may have had a chance to sneak in a quick cry or good scream into a pillow, there’s a lot more emotional processing that needs to take place. Luckily, Cancer energy knows how to dig in. So get ready, babies, we’ve just scratched the surface here. The sign of the crab is here to help us take a deeper dive.
Cancer Season, like the rest of 2020, means business. The same day the Sun moves into her intuitive, oceanic currents, we get the first of two consecutive New Moons in this sign. Yes, you read that correctly. Every year, one lucky sign gets two New Moons. The fact that it’s in Cancer this year, the sign in which the moon feels most at home, is both auspicious and instructive. Considering that this New Moon also happens on the Summer Solstice really highlights the shifting of the scales, from darkness to light and now from light back to darkness. Our first New Moon in Cancer is June 20th at 0°, and it’s our initial opportunity to really feel into the truth of our current reality. The fact that we get two New Moons in the same sign signifies that we are only ready for partial truth at this time.
There’s a slow peeling back this month, layer by layer we will continue to see the true nature of the problems at hand.
Remember, ya’ll, we are in the mist of Eclipse Season. This first Cancer New Moon is a Solar Eclipse. Eclipse energy intensifies and illuminates. In a lot of ways, June’s New Moon is a rough draft for July’s implementation. It’s not so much a trial run, it’s more like a first coat of paint—don’t expect one attempt to get the job done. By taking a full month to meditate on Cancerian themes, come July we will have a better sense of what new beginnings we really need to initiate. July’s Cancer New Moon marks the end of Eclipse Season, so use the powerful magic of these next four weeks to illuminate and eliminate that which no longer serves. Consider that how we dismantle the old structures will inform how we create the new world. So let’s make sure to be thorough, clear, and grounded in the work we do from here on out.
Generally, New Moon’s are soft, gentle respites from Astrological storms. Unfortunately, both of these Cancer New Moons may feel more like Full Moons, confrontational and intense. But by now you’ve clearly discovered that confrontation and intensity are some of the main subjects in this year's lesson plan. June’s New Moon has a square to Mars, a stressful aspect with the God of War. Mars is currently in Pisces, where he's exploring his spiritual warriorship, and he’s close enough to Neptune (planet of prayer and mysticism) to be a whisper's distance from some heady spiritual truths. This dissonance between the Sun/Moon in Cancer and Mars/Neptune in Pisces is already playing out. The first pair are more interested in exploring personal feelings, whereas the latter pair are submerged in collective grief and suffering.
This New Moon will broker a negotiation you’ll have to make with yourself about how to honor your own emotional cycles without getting totally swept up in the current of the collective. Or you may find yourself wanting to retreat into your own drama as a means of avoiding the greater shared pain of this moment in time. The key to squares is compromise and action. We cannot afford to hide from what is going on in our world. We must use this Mars energy to be spiritual warriors for justice, to speak up, speak out, and fight for what we know is right. But there are many methods of combat—finding your own authentic protest style is imperative. We need all kinds: marchers, shouters, writers, donors, strategic planners. This first new moon is dedicated to helping us find a true balance between our individual hidden needs and the unmet emotional needs of society. And the energy of the Solstice itself, which radiates balance, can help us find the right ratio between individual attention and collective action.
In full celebration of Cancer Season,
your cards were pulled to align with your
MOON SIGN, not your Sun or Rising.
If you don’t know your MOON SIGN, it’s a quick Google away. If we consider the SUN SIGN is our outer compass, the MOON SIGN is the inner compass. The sign in which the moon sat during your birth informs the method through which your needs get met, how your self-care can be most effective, and (most interestingly) the way your personal magic wants to express.
PS: I’m still here giving readings and supporting healings, so if you are feeling in need of a little extra support don’t hesitate to reach out! And ya’ll know we have a podcast, riiiight? In fact, our little podcast just turned two years old! But don't worry, we are not losing steam; in fact, we are working harder than ever to make The Spiritual Gayz podcast not just entertaining but uplifting, empowering, and hopefully nourishing to your spirit. You’ll find it wherever you get your podcast fix: iTunes, Spotify, the works!
Ace of Wands
The suit of Wands rules over the fire of our lives. Consider the things in your life that spark, which include creativity, spirituality, and sexual expression. Even though these three things might seem separate, they are all a manifestation of the same thing: our desire to connect with something larger than ourselves. The Ace of Wands signifies a burst of energy in one of these three realms (or possibly all of them). Let your passions overtake you this moonth, whether it’s throwing yourself heart-first into a new creative project, a new love affair, or new spiritual practice—you’ll find if you let your passion be your guide, you’ll feel more connected than ever.
Cancer Moons are some of the most intuitive and sensitive beings in the Zodiac. Because you are ruled by the moon itself, you can be quite changeable in how you feel about things; the important thing is to allow your heart its own cycles of ebb and flow. What satisfies you today may not even begin to scratch the surface tomorrow. The Ace of Wands might be showing up to suggest that there’s a new way to get your deepest needs met, particularly your spiritual needs.
As you evolve, so too does your perception of the divine. Perhaps your heart’s evolution is ready to explore new ways to connect with source energy. This card can turn up to signify that there’s a whole new chapter in how you live as a spiritual being. Even more importantly, it can indicate that how you think about and perceive being in relationship with spirit is changing. The Goddess has infinite faces, perhaps this moonth, you are learning to see one you’ve never noticed before!
Three of Cups (Reversed)
If our recent bout of isolation has taught us anything, it’s that we need people. No matter how robust your inner life, no matter how self-sufficient you are, human beings crave community—no one is exempt from that. As a Leo Moon, your heart thrives when it can express itself fully and be received by others. Essentially, your heart loves to stand in the spotlight and sing her torch song—but every diva needs her audience. And this moonth wants you to seek out those trusted companions in your life who can applaud your heart’s true song.
The suit of Cups rules over the water of our lives: our emotions and our relationships. The Three of Cups signifies our deepest connections, those select few who understand our true nature and share our hopes and dreams as if they were their own. It is vital that you find ways to spend time with these besties this moonth (SAFELY, of course!). Whether it’s committing to a weekly Zoom call or inviting a best friend or two to sit across from you in your back patio. You can’t afford to isolate your heart from your people, even if you are still physically in isolation.
The upside nature of this card could suggest that your best friends are changing. Perhaps the people you really need right now are different from who you really needed before the world changed. You’ve been changing, too, Leo Moon. So it’s only natural that those you want to surround yourself with might shift as well. The more you can speak from your heart, the more you’ll be able to feel who is really with you. Those are the confidants to cultivate deeper relationships with