As we enter this week of eclipses,  grand crosses and more, rather than seeing whatever’s happening right now as a crisis, let’s choose to see it as  a giant leap for all of us and an  opportunity to learn, transmute and expand more than ever before.

Essentially  the astrology of the past few months has been leading to this point, so whatever’s been bubbling in our  respective pots, is coming to a head this week. It begins with the powerful lunar eclipse tomorrow in Libra (opposite the Sun in Aries) which brings unconscious emotions out of hiding and to the surface, for examination and integration. Being in Libra, the focus is on seeking balance in our relationships.  For me, this is not only about relationships with other people, although these will certainly be held up to the magnifying glass over the next week. It’s also about our relationships with everything else – ourselves,  money,  possessions, expectations, thoughts, emotions, bodies, beliefs,  work,  home, our planet. We’re all connected, so we’re all  in relationship with everything all the time.

The way I see it this week is that we’re being given an amazing opportunity to put our big panties on and get real – to deeply contemplate and be totally honest with ourselves as to where we are out of balance or integrity. Do our  expectations for others match our own actions?  Are we living authentically, speaking our truth or behaving in ways that others expect us to?  Are we being our own authority or looking outside for advice, approval and affirmation?  Are we ready to take complete responsibility for every single aspect of our lives?

Tempers could run high this week, with aggression and confrontation reaching epic proportions,  if we  are unconscious, reactive and hang onto the  need to be right. If however, we’re able to stop and centre ourselves, give up the need to be right, respond rather than react, choose peace rather than war, the energy of this week has the potential to push us out of the darkness and into the light. I really do believe that this is a potentially life changing week on a very deep level, so be aware of everything that comes up for you. Look at it, meditate on it, write about it, talk about it and ask yourself what its teaching you.

The word Temperance came to mind whilst writing this – in the dictionary “Temperance” means  Moderation of passion; patience; calmness; sedateness.

In the Temperance tarot image above, the angel has one foot on a the land  and the other in the river. In this stance she represents the need to “test the waters” before jumping headlong into unknown circumstances. In so doing, she tempers the whimsical flight of the Fool who sometimes jumps without giving a second thought. In her hands are two cups which she uses to mix water. One cup can be thought of as holding hot water and the other cold water. With temperance, we can mix the opposites and finds a balance in life, by avoiding extremes.

 Another interpretation is that she ceaselessly pours water (feelings) back and forth from one cup to another, because feelings must constantly flow and renew themselves according to what’s happening in every moment.

Playing with the word “temperance” a little further led me to look  into the word Temper, a very Aries word. It doesn’t only mean to go red in the face, stomp our little feet and throw our toys. Steel is “tempered” when it is heated up and then quickly cooled and in so doing, its effectiveness, strength and robustness is increased. (That’s what you see when blacksmiths stop hammering the sword on the anvil and plunge the glowing hot blade into a barrel of water). We’re all being tempered by whats going on and we will emerge stronger.

If you go back  even further to the older roots of the word, to “temper” something meant to prepare it specially by carefully mixing in new ingredients to create balance and that is what this time of alchemy is all about.

So here we go –- in full acceptance, authenticity and temperance –  we’re all in this together