By Brandon Alter:
Remember that iconic scene in Moonstruck? You know the one; where Nicolas Cage‘s character tells Cher’s character that he’s in love with her and she slaps him—twice—hard. And then she says her classic line: "Snap out of it!" Well, that is essentially the energy of Capricorn Season. It’s a hard slap across the face from someone who actually loves you very much. It’s time to snap out of whatever magical thinking you’ve been living in and face reality.
Because the Zodiac is a progression, Capricorn energy is the natural response to Sagittarius Season. If Sagittarius is a string of holiday parties, Capricorn is going back to work. If Sagittarius is traveling the world, Capricorn is coming back home. Capricorn may not win any popularity contests, but it is the crucial energy of sobering up and getting on with it. It’s the morning after all the fun has been had and the necessary evil of splashing cold water on your face. It’s looking at your bank account after all your holiday spending, instead of pretending you don’t know what’s in there. Where Sagittarius seeks the truth, Capricorn distills the truth into something we can use. Capricorn puts all the flowery philosophy into practice; and this, my friends, is where our true power lies.
For those of you who haven’t seen Moonstruck (what is wrong with you?!), Cher’s character and Nicolas Cage‘s character end up together. So we’re not being asked to snap out of the dream. The dream is viable, it wants to come true. We are being asked to snap out of how scared we are to commit 100% to it. Capricorn is the ultimate adult of the Zodiac. And wherever Capricorn falls in your birth chart is where you are being tasked to grow all the way up, so that you can follow through on what your soul came here to do. This is the season of the long game. Consider Cher’s career of six decades, that’s the power of Capricorn. It’s about slow growth based on consistent activity.
We must all channel our inner Capricorn and become fiercely self-reliant, ready to do the hard work that will bring us rewards five, ten, even fifty years from now.
The New Moon in Capricorn falls on Christmas, which might lend an air of seriousness to our family gatherings. They say the moon is in its detriment in Capricorn. It’s opposite sign, Cancer, is where the moon feels most at home, in the vast oceanic waters of mysticism and emotion. Capricorn, on the other hand, seeks structure and containment. Therefore the moon’s vibe can be austere, controlling, even seemingly insensitive when here. But the truth is: a Capricorn moon is deeply sensitive (I should know, I am one), it just doesn’t show it. It’s serious and withholding because it cares so damn much.
Cher, who in real life has a Capricorn moon, doesn’t slap Nicolas Cage because she doesn’t love him; she slaps him twice—real hard—because she is scared by the depth of her feelings for him. She can’t control her heart, and so she tries to control what her heart is attracted to. This metaphor, which you can see I am clearly sticking with, is actually a useful way to think about our relationship between our hearts and our dreams. The energy of this moon (and frankly this whole next season) wants us to snap out of our immature relationship with our dreams. We must stop being scared of them and start to take responsibility for how we will actually bring them, bit by bit, into this world.
New Moons occur once a month when the Sun and the Moon occupy the same spot in the sky. This New Moon happens to be a saucy three-way because Jupiter is also hanging out one degree away. Jupiter is the ruling planet of Sagittarius, a benevolent and expansive character who casts a lucky spell on everything he touches. This means whatever you truly commit to under this New Moon will be graced with Jupiter’s blessing—so commit, gurl, with your whole damn heart. But don’t expect to reap rewards any time soon. This is your life’s work we are talking about, so prepare to spend your whole life building it.
Every six months, when the Sun enters into the terrain of either the North or South Node, we come into Eclipse Season. I would be doing ya’ll a disservice if I didn’t mention that this isn’t just a New Moon in Capricorn, it’s a Solar Eclipse.
Eclipse energy is a cosmic course corrector. It’s intense, often emotional, as it shakes the etch-a-sketch of our lives and give us the clean slate we need to move ahead.
Have you ever watched a movie in the theaters all the way to the end of the credits? And then there’s that moment when the lights get switched on, and you’re immediately plunged into the bright light of reality? Eclipses can feel like that. It can feel like the rug being pulled out from under you. But it can also feel like a stork dropping a baby on your front doorstep. Eclipses bring gifts and dispel curses, but rarely in a subtle way.
Capricorn is an Earth sign, to be sure, but it is the last Earth sign in the Zodiac that gives it a cosmic significance. Consider that the symbol for Capricorn is the sea-goat, a mythical creature that is half-goat, half-fish—picture a goat with a mermaid’s tail and you’ve got it. This being can swim down to the depths of the ocean and also scale the craggiest mountain. Capricorn energy is deep, gurl. It’s the ability to mine your own depths and then run them up the tallest flagpole. If Capricorn seems terrestrial it’s only because their hidden depths are just that—hidden.
Recently, I’ve been thinking of the coastline as poetic metaphor for Capricorn energy, especially dramatic rocky shorelines such as the Cliffs of Dover or Big Sur or the Napali Coast in Kauai. A coastline doesn’t just happen; it’s sculpted over eons. It's an intense meeting place for the elements of Earth and Water, each crashing wave as important as the one before it. When you meditate on these wonders of the world, you start to understand what ambition and commitment really looks like, and you also might understand that our life’s work is part of a much greater coastline. We are each but one wave, but without our relentless crashing upon the shore, change would never come.
Change is to be expected in the coming months. Many astrologers are geeking out over the Pluto/Saturn conjunction happening in late January. This aspect is rare; it only happens every 33–38 years—and it lasts for over two years. When Pluto and Saturn come together, it’s like a gay wedding that tears down everything that has come before. Saturn, the ruling planet of Capricorn, is the god of time and structure, a disciplinarian, and a tough-as-nails leather daddy. His husband-to-be, Pluto, is the god of the underworld, the ruler of deep soul transformation and death. To call them a cosmic power couple is an understatement. Many structures we have taken for granted are being called into question. We must assist in these global renovations of consciousness however we can.
It’s an intense and exciting time to be alive on planet Earth. Your job is to notice what in your life is wanting to be released and do your best not to get in the way of divine progress. Be gentle with yourself, the energy is sharp and heavy; bumpy waters ahead. But if you start to get in your head, or if you start to get down on yourself, take a cue from Cher, slap yourself (lovingly) and SNAP OUT OF IT!
For more specific Cosmic Updates and Tarot Wisdom, I highly encourage you to tune into The Spiritual Gayz. This twice monthly podcast that my husband, Angel, and I offer up is dedicated to exploring the wide reaches of spirituality without pretending that it all makes sense. We have tons of episodes on Astrology but also on Tarot and Shamanism and healing and magic. Not to mention fascinating interviews with groovy cosmic queers like Steven Canals, writer/co-creator of the hit TV show POSE, actress/icon Lena Waithe, and beauty/make-up expert Lihja Stewart. If you’ve been looking to expand your spiritual horizons in a fun, accessible way, look no further!
You may have noticed I’m no longer pulling a collective card for these moonthly Tarotscopes. That’s because I’m pulling a card for the collective every week and doing a video reading. If you follow me on Instagram, you’ll find these videos on my stories every Thursday and in my Highlights. But you can also find them on The Spiritual Gayz Youtube page, here!
Below you’ll find your individual Tarotscopes for the complete lunar cycle. Read for your SUN and your MOON . . . and if you don’t know your moon, look it up, gurl, that’s part of your personal power waiting to be claimed!
When pulling cards for this cycle, I asked that they not only resonate for your next moonth but also for your WHOLE YEAR AHEAD. Consider this message a prelude to what 2020 has in store for your sign. And if you want more specifics on your upcoming year, I highly encourage you to reach out for a Year Ahead Tarot Reading. We’ll pull one card for each month of 2020 and a thirteenth card that speaks to the unique theme of your upcoming year. This is one of the best tools to prepare you for the unexpected, so don’t hesitate to see what your cards have in store!
Four of Cups
Capricorn’s aren’t known for being emotional creatures but that doesn’t mean they’re dead inside. Cups, as the suit that rules the water of our lives, shows up when our inner depths require plunging. Fours in the Tarot represent a foundation being laid, something on top of which the rest of the cards can be safely built. It’s the first completion in many ways. Consider the four directions, the four seasons, the four elements, even the four primary building blocks of matter: Oxygen, Hydrogen, Carbon, and Nitrogen. Simply put, this month—and perhaps this whole year—is your opportunity to create a new workflow with your feelings. Maybe that means acknowledging that your feelings are valuable and worthy of your attention.
Most of the Capricorn’s I know use their unattended anxiety or despair to fuel their workaholic tendencies. Instead of feeling into the discomfort of their hearts, they hide in the satisfaction of their labors. But over time, no matter the size of their bank accounts, their life loses its richness—their senses dull, their hearts walled off from the inside. Don’t let this be you!
So much of this currently astrological shitstorm is happening in the neighborhood of your Sun or Moon—you’re not crazy, there’s a lot to be feeling and you, above all other signs, need to find the courage required to face these deep feels. The Four of Cups signifies a time when we step out of the river and onto the banks. Why would we willingly step out of flow? So that we can allow our senses to renew themselves. We become numb to what we habitually do, and living numb is worse than death. Take advantage of this rare gift, gentle Capricorn; sink into your sensitivities, reawaken your subtle senses and be reminded what it’s like to really live from the inside out.
Ace of Wands (Reversed)
The Ace of Wands, even in the reversed position, is cause for celebration. It’s an explosive energy of inspiration and power. In some ways, the Ace can be seen as a return to the true source of your life. Sometimes this feels like a spiritual awakening, sometimes it manifests as a new creative obsession, but it always indicates that you are coming back to life in a major way.
Many people think the Tarot only works in one direction, from Ace to Ten, like you were climbing a ladder one rung at a time. But the Tarot also works when we count back from the Ten to the Ace. It’s a path that leads toward purity. Look at the Ace not so much as a beginning but a satisfying conclusion. Consider the Ten then, like the planet Pluto, its orbit is farthest from the central fire—fully disconnected from the source of its true power. Perhaps you spent last year feeling that way, like you couldn’t touch the Sun no matter how hard you tried. Always outside the party looking in. Well all that is about to change. Now you are sitting in the center of that great fire.
In the reversed position, this card may indicate a slow burn. You may not wake up New Year’s Day with the energy of a supernova, but something in you is starting to ignite. Remember that the suit of Wands speaks to the things in our life that spark: our sexuality, spirituality, and creativity. Perhaps this card came in upside down to help you reimagine your relationship to the divine. Perhaps your creative process is about to undergo a major overhaul. Maybe you’re about to have the best sex of your life with someone you never thought you’d be attracted to. Either way, attune to what gets you hot, and you’re sure to uplevel your spirit in this year ahead.
Four of Swords
Fours in the Tarot represent a foundation being laid, something on top of which the rest of the cards can be safely built. It’s the first completion in many ways. Consider the four directions, the four seasons, the four elements, even the four primary building blocks of matter: Oxygen, Hydrogen, Carbon, and Nitrogen. In the suit of Swords, what’s being built is a new mental foundation we can trust to support the rest of our lives going forward. But how do you build out your mind? I think you have to start by looking back. We don’t make choices arbitrarily. We are products of our childhood, our relationships, and our environment. The more we can understand why we are the way we are, the more power we have over changing the choices that no longer serve us. Spending some time meditating on your past can help bring about clarity that isn’t available when you’re living it in real time. You may not realize how unhealthy, co-dependent, or even abusive a relationship was until you’re safely out of it. You may not fully understand how soul-sucking that last job was until you’ve spent a few months out of the office. The time is ripe for understanding how you got to where you are now.
Often what we resist learning persists in gaining our attention. The same lessons haunt us, stalk us, until we face them and learn their medicine. Similarly, this card wants you to mine the hidden gifts from the traumas of your past, both recent and long, long ago. The more courageous you can be in revisiting some of your more painful personal histories, the more you will understand why your brain functions in the unique way it does. As Winston Churchill wisely paraphrased, "Those who do not learn from the past are doomed to repeat it." This year wants to empower you against perpetuating old cycles that leave you feeling your worst. All you have to do is sit down, take heart, and look back.
Five of Pentacles
Fives in the Tarot are sacred contractions, think of five fingers closed to form a fist. This is a halfway point, a bend in the road, a realization that what you packed for your journey is all wrong. Pentacles are the suit of Earth, they speak to our body, our bank account, our career—if it has a material form,
Pentacles rule it. Therefore this card can indicate a lack of physical resources. But Pentacles also speak to the invisible magic that is hidden in ordinary things, and the Five is where
we realize we actually have everything we need—even if it doesn’t appear that way.
Necessity is and will always be the mother of invention. If you had more, you would do less. This moonth, maybe even this whole year, is about making a feast from the scraps in your pantry. I pulled the Five of Pentacles on a day in June when I sprained my ankle. Please observe that the image of this card is literally a beggar on crutches. It seemed like the worst thing that could happen. I was on a Shamanic retreat, far from home, and now physically impaired. And yet it proved to be an incredible blessing. I learned how to ask for help, from strangers no less. I learned how to sit still, to marinate in the teachings I had come to learn instead of just receiving them and carrying about my business as usual. To the uninitiated, the Five of Pentacles is a pain in the ass. To the awakened, it is an invaluable blessing.
Consider that the number Five is made up of the four elements plus the spirit. If you have been imprisoned by the world of matter, the Five is here to liberate you. To quote philosopher Manly P. Hall, “When the four elements have become the pedestal upon which the spirit stands as a city upon a hill and not with stone walls that close it in, then man has reached the spiritual number of the Five.” This will prove to be a powerful year for you, Aries, to revivify your spirit and connection to the Compassionate Cosmos.