Think Pink: April Full Moon in Libra + Retro Planetary Yoga

Greg Diesel Walck, Moon Rise over Las Vegas, Sept 29, 2012

Over the weekend, look southeast for the nearly full moon, known as the “pink moon.” The moon phase is exact during the wee hours of Tuesday, April 11. The big round moonrise perhaps is best seen and enjoyed with sunset color on the evenings before. Or if you’re an early riser, gaze westward next week for moonset close to sunrise.

For North America, the April full moon is called ‘pink’ because it occurs in early spring, when many flowering plants blossom in pastels. But if you hit it right with sunset or sunrise color – or the Belt of Venus, shown in the above photograph by Greg Diesel Walck and in his mid-January photograph – you may see the full moonrise or moonset within an ombré pink-blue clear sky.

But wait, there’s more! The nearly full moonrise is joined by bright Jupiter and the brilliant star Spica in Virgo on Sunday and Monday, April 9 and 10. A few days past its annual solar opposition (see the last Wonderful Moon), Jupiter will shine above through the spring and summer into the early fall nights. Before sunset on Monday could offer a fabulous full moon photo op, if conditions agree in your location.

Astrological Influences + Considerations

The heavens are busy. The first full moon of spring perfects in Libra, the sign opposite Aries, the current sun sign, on Tuesday, April 11 – and is accompanied by Jupiter (see above). The sun enters the earth sign of Taurus on April 19, appropriately a few days before Earth Day on April 22.

Jupiter and Venus have been traveling retrograde since early February and March respectively. On April 6, they were joined by Saturn. Mercury turns retrograde on Sunday evening, April 9 (see below). Pluto joins the retrograde party on April 20.  But that’s after Venus stations direct on April 15.

During the full moon phase, Venus conjuncts the asteroid Chiron. Chiron shows where we have great empathy, our inner wounded healer. Their conjunction occurs in super sensitive, otherwordly Pisces. They’re paired while Venus moves at a deliberate pace during its second pass through Pisces, following its solar conjunction (see the last Wonderful Moon). Almost all April, until the new moon in Taurus, Venus is nearly stationary and joined with Chiron. And Neptune is the final depositor in its own sign of Pisces. Awareness of hurt is greatly heightened.

The cardinal T-square that’s been active for months is intensified during the full moon. The sun conjuncts volatile Uranus in Aries to oppose the moon that conjuncts judicial Jupiter in Libra.  Both lunisolar sides square stealthy Pluto in Capricorn. As stated in the last Wonderful Moon, the cardinal square pattern creates significant frustration and spinning wheels.

But that was for the new moon, which initiated the Aries lunation. Now we’re at the midpoint of the lunation. Tension has increased, along with enormous sensitivity. Continue to stay calm and focused. Avoid being reactive, however difficult. People might get under your skin big time, deliberately or by being oblivious.

The Libra moon helps with trying to see another point of view, as does Piscean empathy. You’ll still likely want to tell some annoying people to take a hike.  If you aren’t absolutely sure they deserve it, can you channel your sweet, pink, and lunar self instead?

Feeling + Moving with the Moon

Not everyone feels retrograde Mercury. I often do. Before and during the first few days of Mercury’s retrograde cycles, I tend to zig when I should zag with electric/electronic things. Or, I’m butterfingers with gadgets. Or, gizmos go haywire and require attention to straighten out. The current retro Mercury spans April 9 through a week past the new moon in Taurus, i.e., through the second half of the Aries lunation plus a “bonus” week.

Give yourself extra time to arrive at destinations, expect mechanical glitches, and definitely back up files or have the cloud do it automatically. Don’t be surprised if you have brain fog or apprehension; give yourself plenty of mental space. Mercury’s retro cycles generally are annoying, but nothing much more. The quicksilver god Mercury is a naughty trickster.

As with most planetary retrograde cycles, retrograde Mercury offers opportunities to rethink, review, recycle, renew, rework, repeat, revisit. Re-trograde cycles re-turn us to re-member issues and give them a second or third re-consideration. Continuing through April, this is the second of four retrograde cycles for Mercury in 2017.

As to the other current planetary retrogrades: Venus’s cycles affect emotions and relationships, as well as consumerism and vanity. Jupiter’s annual cycles affect the philosophical outlook. Your worldview may be shaken, prompting you to turn within for answers. Saturn, too, has annual retrograde cycles. The Saturnine influence often concerns setbacks, patience, and hard work that may go unrecognized but eventually produces results. Pluto’s cycles may feel topsy-turvy, experienced as reversals. But they address and redress issues with power, control, and secrets.

There’s a lot of looking in the rearview mirror and coping with stuff. Also the close pairing of Venus and Chiron in Pisces – with Neptune as the final depositor from April 2-20 (on either side of the full moon) – can reopen old wounds. Unroll your mat for a contemplative, inward practice, such as yin yoga, trauma-sensitive yoga, and yoga that opens the chakras. Be quiet and still.

Yoga might feel especially nice during the Libra full moon. Libra is the sign of balance and equanimity, which we do a lot of in yoga. The lunar energy can calm and align, and it’s paired with Jupiter for gratitude and generosity. Complement the physical practice with devotion, intention, meditation, breath-work, and some deep, vibrational Oms, the sacred syllable of the universe.

Sometimes life stories don’t follow a straight path. Retro periods offer an opportunity to press pause and rewind, perhaps undo or reset, and circle back around. How often do you get to take back things you said or did, or return things as you found them? Gain insights from the introverted, looking-glass perspective and slower, backward movement.  After the gift of a second or third pass, return to yourself prepared to soothe your ouches, focus your mind, and still your heart.

On Wonderful Moon

A longer, more detailed version of this post appears in this week’s Moonday (April 3). For the next Wonderful Moon that posts in approximately two weeks, the new moon in Taurus will be discussed. Note that Libra, the full moon sign, and Taurus, the new moon sign, are both ruled by Venus – which emerges from retrograde before the next lunation. Love on the rebound?

Wonderful Moon is published bimonthly before the new and full moons. The focus is on viewing and experiencing the moon with lore, advice, and yoga-oriented body awareness that meshes with the phase, season, and astrological influences.

Wendy Sphinx is teaching a Chillax spring series on Thursday evenings in April at Pure Light Yoga in High Point. The classes are offered on a donation basis to support and benefit people who are recovering from addiction. If you’re in central North Carolina and want to chill and relax, clear your head and leave with a smile on your face, please join us!

Photography:Moonrise over Las Vegas” (Sept. 29, 2012) is by noted lunar and landscape photographer Greg Diesel Walck, from his Facebook album The Lost Files, entry #3. The photo of the rising full moon shows the graduated lavender Belt of Venus that occurred after sunset, from a vantage point looking out over the city. Diesel Walck says, “I literally ran up the side of a small mountain carrying my camera gear to get this shot.”

Sphinx Yoga
Written by Sphinx Yoga
A longtime yogi and night sky gazer, Wendy Sphinx has published Moonday and Sphinx Yoga for two years. She lives in NC and finishes 200-hour yoga teacher training this spring. Although she’s been exposed to many flavors of yoga, her current practice is Dharma-focused, which is where she began her journey many years and moons ago. She earned a doctorate in journalism from UNC-Chapel Hill, master’s and graduate women’s studies certificate at Duke, and undergraduate degree in writing and literature from NYU, with a summer session in science at Oxford University in the UK. A communications professor for 20 years, she has worked professionally in journalism, marketing and public relations since the 1980s. Her grandmother was an astrologer, and she grew up reading horoscopes and looking at the moon, planets, and stars through a backyard telescope. The Sphinx’s bimonthly column, Wonderful Moon, draws on this background to share lore, advice, and timely yoga tips for the new and full moon phases. Information on observing the moon is combined with astrological insights, consideration of nature and seasonal change, and the cycles of our lives. Beautiful lunar photography is provided by award-winning photographer and author Greg Diesel Walck.