This weekend’s Full Moon in Leo couldn't come at a better time. Leo is about creative expression, recreation, and romance. In other words, all things fun. With this Full Moon, we are invited to shrug off our cares and find some joy -- at least for a weekend. It is also an invitation to explore the Leo part of ourselves, to find our ability to share generously what is inside of us, to celebrate who we are. This weekend could be a much needed respite after a rather heavy first few weeks of the year. But it will take some conscious effort to hear and answer Leo’s call. The other planetary energies at play are in contrast to this fiery Full Moon, and they will tend to dominate unless we consciously invite the Leo in us to come out and play.
The Full Moon doesn’t connect closely with any of the other planets. We are still in the ongoing square of Uranus in Aries to Pluto in Capricorn, an aspect in its last throes but currently still in strong effect. Uranus = sudden and surprising events, Pluto = transformation, death, mortality, and endings. Retrograde Mercury is bringing further attention to this square, with its conjunction to Pluto as it slows down and prepares to station direct (on Jan. 25th). We have certainly had an awareness of mortality brought to the surface with three surprising and saddening celebrity deaths this month, each of them artists who left substantial contributions to their field: David Bowie, Alan Rickman, and Glenn Frey.
David Bowie's death in particular has affected me. I was a fan growing up and have always held him special in my heart. David Bowie's natal Moon was in Leo, just where this Full Moon resides. He also has a natal Saturn-Pluto conjunction in early Leo, making a powerful lineup of three planets in that sign. As he carried so much Leo energy, I’d like to take a moment to honor Bowie as we come to the Leo Full Moon.
Since the news of his death, I’ve been reliving parts of my childhood and teenage years in which he and his music were ever-present. Singing “Changes” in the car with a group of friends at the top of our lungs (singing badly, but with gusto). Dancing in a line to “Fashion” at a Junior High school dance (“turn to the left…”). Watching “The Hunger” over and over (despite the fact that it’s not the greatest movie) because he just looked so good as a vampire. Getting to see him in concert for the first time in '87, grabbing my friend’s hand when he descended from the ceiling, and us looking at each other eyes wide, saying “Oh my God, it’s Bowie.” Seeing him in person was surreal.
These images, and his songs, have been running on repeat through my mind. I loved the otherworldliness of him. I loved that he could continually surprise us. In every performance by him I've seen, he never phoned it in. He was always inventing something new, even when singing a song he'd sung a thousand times before. And Bowie was more than a musician. His essence seemed to shine out effortlessly, his appearance and style intertwined completely with the impact of the music. Although he is known for being a chameleon, a wearer of many faces and costumes, he is also known for being true to himself in his art no matter what the audience thought. Somehow it was always so undeniably him, whatever costume he wore. His sometimes radical appearance never seemed fake or insincere. He wasn’t posing, he was being.
One of the archetypes of Leo is The Performer. Leo is about our ability to connect with an audience by taking what is in our heart and offering it to the world via a creative medium. Leo is about shining our unique light out into the world in a way that people cannot help but pay attention. But an optimal use of Leo energy also is about maintaining our authenticity while still enticing an audience.
The following two quotes from Bowie, seemingly at odds, sum up the Leo dilemma:
“All my big mistakes are when I try to second-guess or please an audience. My work is always stronger when I get very selfish about it.”
“I suppose for me as an artist it wasn’t always just about expressing my work; I really wanted, more than anything else, to contribute in some way to the culture I was living in.”
So, I’ve been thinking about my challenging relationship with my own creativity, and the Leo part of myself. Contemplating Bowie's life, his generosity in sharing himself and his art with us, has reminded me to be brave. To keep creating. To keep doing what it is in me to do, what brings me joy to create. To keep stepping in front of an audience, even when it’s scary.
At this Leo Full Moon, we are each called to connect to our inner Leo. In embodying Leo, you’re able to be yourself, to create what you want, and still be seen, heard, and appreciated. Honor your inner Leo this weekend and share more of yourself with others in any small way you can (or large way, if you dare). Do what brings you joy. Create. Sing. Tell a story. Read out loud something you wrote. Like Bowie, step into the spotlight, and be more of who you are.