Before and After: The Taurus Full Moon

Any Full Moon tends to act as a point of demarcation between the energies or confrontations that were building or had stalemated before the event, and then their resolution or dissolution afterwards. Such looks to be the case with the Taurus Full Moon on Tuesday, though the sense of ‘before and after’ is underscored by Chiron’s influence.

Photo by Amanda Painter.

Photo by Amanda Painter.

The Moon in early Taurus opposes the Sun in early Scorpio at exactly 8:05 am EDT on Oct. 27 to form this Full Moon. At 3+ Taurus (the 4th degree of Taurus), that puts the Moon precisely in the Chiron discovery degree.

Chiron was discovered in November 1977. Eric notes that events involving this degree evoke the theme of “before and after Chiron.” He writes:

“This is the degree with the Sabian symbol, ‘The pot of gold at the end of the rainbow,’ which image is the namesake of Chiron: Rainbow Bridge Between the Inner and Outer Planets by Barbara Hand Clow. The symbol is a reference to linking the celestial and mundane orders of reality — which is Chiron’s specialty.”

Incidentally, the asteroid Iris — named for the Greek messenger goddess who linked humans with the gods — is involved in the Full Moon aspect, at 2+ Scorpio. It would seem that this event carries a divine message — or possibly represents our pleas to the ‘gods’ — regarding how we approach healing (physical, emotional, spiritual) and thresholds.

As if to drive the point home, the unnamed minor planet 1992 QB1, which Eric associates with thresholds between states of being or phases of life (and those who assist others in crossing those thresholds), is exactly opposite Iris at 2+Taurus, conjunct the Moon. Also nearby, just on the other side of the Moon at 5+ Scorpio, is the asteroid Requiem. Len Wallick described Requiem in a 2013 column as a reminder that “beginnings are best undertaken while mindful and in acceptance of the past.”

Take a moment to swirl those variations on the theme together in your mind. Bring in your lived experiences of the body-centric, sense-oriented, tangible facets of Taurus, and the alchemical matrix of sex, death and emotions represented by Scorpio. I have a thought about this Full Moon’s message, but first I want to bring in a little more of Eric’s writing on the “before and after Chiron” theme of 3+ Taurus.

He writes, “I have observed that the discovery of Chiron describes the tipping point where matters of a holistic nature, including alternative forms of healing (almost all of which strive to be based in some holistic concept) are beginning to get some recognition.”

That tipping point included the initial steps toward getting chiropractics (named for Chiron) legal recompense from the American Medical Association, after having been shunned as “an unscientific cult” by that organization. The late 1970s also saw things like health food stores, massage therapy and various forms of group and individual therapy gain in popularity.

Regarding the impact that Chiron’s discovery had on astrology itself, Eric writes that it “began to evolve from a form of fortune telling and spiritualism to something taken more seriously as an authentic intellectual discipline.” He adds that, “To the extent astrology is practiced today as a healing art, we can thank the discovery of Chiron and the early astrologers who took note of its existence and did original research.”

So we have the ‘before and after’ of astrology, and the ‘before and after’ of medicine and related healing modalities. If we’re willing to step back and look at the really big picture, there’s the seemingly ultimate ‘before and after’ from our mortal perspective: the life we live before death, and then whatever comes after we cross that threshold.

Yet even in that case, the ‘before’ and the ‘after’ are both part of the same unknowable (or only partially knowable) thing. As we cross the thresholds and demarcations — and as we witness others doing the same — we celebrate and we grieve, sometimes in the same gesture, as I experienced Saturday.

At a memorial 5Rhythms dance held in honor of a friend who passed away two weeks ago, we moved our bodies and emotions to music in a way that, on Friday when I thought about this Full Moon chart, struck me as being a perfect illustration of how the signs of Taurus and Scorpio come together in a true meeting or merging. As we exercise our bodies, we process our emotions; when we express our emotions, our bodies are changed.

In fact, I have a sneaking suspicion that there’s something in this Full Moon on the Taurus discovery degree about the ways we can track and use somaticization of our emotions in our healing processes. Or physical bodies and our emotional bodies are so closely intertwined; there is tremendous potential to follow from one to the other, in either direction; to discover ourselves, and to heal.

28 thoughts on “Before and After: The Taurus Full Moon

  1. Amanda Painter Post author

    And just because I could not fit everything into this post that popped up in the Full Moon chart, I’ll make the first comment now: I could not help but notice that Venus in Virgo is exactly opposite Chiron in Pisces two hours and about two minutes after the Full Moon. Not only is Venus on its way to the third conjunction with Mars this year (denoting a process that likely signifies its own “before and after” in relationships), but the sign Virgo is very closely associated with Chiron, sharing the themes of healing and teaching. And of course, when you pair Venus and Mars together in a conjunction, you merge the two traditional sign rulers of Taurus and Scorpio, respectively.

    Isn’t astrology fun? 🙂

    1. Mary

      As I was reading the last bit about Venus opp Chiron, already blown away by your take on tomorrow’s full moon, I was overcome with total body tingles! I am very moved by your Taurus/Scorpio insights, Amanda, and feeling a new depth of contact for our astrology.

      Cool, Awesome, and Now I must meditate on a full moon dance as ritual 🙂

      Thank you! Amanda,

  2. Lizzy

    “Our physical bodies and our emotional bodies are so closely intertwined; there is tremendous potential to follow from one to the other, in either direction; to discover ourselves, and to heal”. I’m feeling this so strongly right now, dear Amanda, and am encouraged by your words to work even more consciously with it. Was very moved by your piece and photo. Thank you. Have sent the photo on to my dear friend, whose husband died almost exactly a year ago – as the full moon marked the most important dates in their lives together – both its beginning and ending, I’m so sorry for the loss of your friend – and couldn’t think of a more wonderful thing to do than have a memorial dance for her.

  3. Deborah

    Mantra for the upcoming cycle for me will be “dance- yer-pants off”, which will hopefully create a new resting face. After the challenge of honoring the past with minimal regret, releasing all those leftover emotions that no longer serve, I will work up a James Brown sweat that will leave me smiling like a demented ventriloquist and ready for some afters.
    Kudos to you PW writers for all the great work you’ve given so consistently, thoughtfully, lovingly, …and you’re way less expensive than a therapist.

  4. Patricia Proctor

    I just read that tomorrow is the 4th 260 day completion since 12/21/2012. The author suggests that modern pragmatism is impractical for the continued progression of human life, as material science has reached the end of usefulness Spiritual awakening. It may be what makes candidates like Bernie Sanders or Rand Paul appear as acceptable alternatives to mainstream politics, as we voters begin to determine the direction we want to go.

    This is a very useful and well thought out article Amanda!

    1. Patricia Proctor

      Should be a period after usefulness. The author is suggesting the next cycle, beginning tomorrow, will be the change that begins to heal us spiritually and creatively. It would be a pleasant surprise to see the end of all that is crude and crass over the next few months.

  5. Amanda Painter Post author

    Mary, aLittleBird, Deborah, Lizzy, Patricia — thank you, all. I’m always grateful to know this writing resonates with and assists the people reading.

    And Deborah — your “dance yer pants off” plan sounds perfect. 🙂

  6. aWord

    Today is my son’s birthday; this full moon being a quarter of a year past the full moon at which my daughter died–viewing it (she was born at full moon). Tying our emotional and physical bodies? Absolutely….
    ” you fly like time between laughter and dark! /…and in the morning her calm sky breaths on the warm side of the storm/knowing she danced wild before she flew.”
    Aaryn’s art consistently portrayed reaching for the moon and stars; now she dances wild and free, lit forever by them. We’ve had clear sky for every full moon since June…in an area where fog should prevail. “Dance then, wherever you may be…”
    Thanks, Amanda–for the space to reflect upon the Full Moon.

    1. Amanda Painter Post author

      aWord: I had no idea your daughter died this year; I am so sorry to hear this. Clearly her essence lives on in her art, and of course in your heart. Thank you for being willing to share this with the Planet Waves community; I am gratified you could find space for reflection here.

  7. Sara Victoria

    Thanks so much for this reading, resonates personally for me… 3 Taurus is my S. Node – am very into the fact that it’s Chiron’s discovery degree – the whole thing resonates on multiple, subtle but intense levels… Re: Chiron/Chiropractic I was so excited about Chiropractic having been names for Chiron, having listened to Eric’s great segment on the AstroSummit recently, and I mentioned it to my chiropractor (who has Chiron in his 10th house.) He told me that Chiropractic was actually named for
    the word for ‘hand,’ in Greek: chiros. So I assume the name for Chiron is also derived from ‘hand,’ having been an avid healer, etc.. Yes – the veil between the worlds is thin, as they say, and I for one am extremely aware at this moment in time, of that blessed bridge between them. Gratitude, Amanda, for this!

  8. Michael Mayes

    No doubt, my Somatics class is doing wonders for me. It is deep body work, and brings a lot of emotions to the surface. Opening the body on a cellular level, understanding how much emotion is contained in the organs, sensing the sturdy structure of the container (skeleton), learning how to initiate movements from new places, re-patterning how my body works for more efficiency, power, grace, and support. It’s fascinating work.
    Today I attended a lecture by Steve Wangh (playwrite, director, acting teacher), who has been at Naropa guest directing the second year grad students in an improv performance. He spoke a lot today about grief, and death, and how we don’t take the time, or put the energy out in the open space for everyone to see when we are grieving. He spoke about a lot more than that, but I was struck by the Scorpionic tone of his lecture. Much of it revolved around emotions, fear, grief, death, and sex.

    1. Amanda Painter Post author

      Mike — sounds like a great class! I’d love to do more somatics work in a theater context; most of my experience with it has been either in dance-related workshops or else in my own personal work with a spiritual counselor/healer. Fascinating that the lecturer spoke on the taboos we have around allowing others to see us grieve, given his timing.

      He’s absolutely right, of course; I’ve even had the curious experience years ago of noticing my impulse to stuff the welling tears I was feeling in a rehearsal of a grief scene for a play. I had to have this little talk with myself inside my head while another actor gave her monologue, reminding myself that the whole point of acting is to let the emotion through. I literally had to give myself permission to let the others see me cry. And then, during performances (to take the pressure off), I would inwardly give myself permission *not* to cry, if it just was not there — permission simply to be present with the truth of whatever I was feeling, rather than trying to force an emotional display. It was weird, but it worked.

      Anyway — yes, we forget sometimes how much is stored in the body. And when those emotions come up for us unexpectedly, or with a tone that somehow feels like it belongs to some other, unidentified experience, we do not always know what do do with them, or how to follow them to their source, or what they are trying to tell us. Both in acting and in life; our bodies hold so much.

  9. Pisces Sun

    Thank you Amanda for this beautiful piece. Yes indeed, astrology is very interesting if only for the mere fact that it lends a perspective that we may not otherwise have, similar to prose, poetry or a good friend, that allows us to think and reflect on our lives. I find the Sabian symbols do that for me, having only learned to consider them as useful pondering tools this past year as I am so new to Astrology and this aspect of it.
    My MC is 14 degrees Taurus and the Sabian Symbol is “On the beach children play as shellfish grope at the edge of the water,” and according to Dane Rudhyar this degree signifies “values of natural energies and simple pleasures.” As I was reading your piece I was thinking about the energy of emotions, how they settle in the mind and body and even our collective consciousness. It is only through some sort of awareness that they “shake” free and physical movement is indeed a beginning, and dancing sounds like a perfect balm to assist in the healing process. Yet, it’s all connected it isn’t? This great big circle of life and wheel in the sky? Never ending rhythmic perfumed essence of memories, new memories, fading memories, shaken memories, reformed and even transformed memories that allow us to be human. My Piscean Spirit sometimes gets overwhelmed by it all (I can only imagine how the Scorpion feels) but my MC heralds another message according to Dane Rudhyar which is to Live and Let live by returning to the simpler pleasures. The beautiful monk Thich Nhat Hahn goes one step further which is to say that you are already there: “ A rose is a rose is a rose. Does a rose have something to do? Your purpose is to be yourself. You don’t have to run anywhere to be someone else. You are wonderful just the way you are.” As we each sit in” knowing” with ourselves in this Chiron moment in its discovery degree of Taurus (natural steps of lawn of clover) let us recall our childhood memories of clover. Its perfumed sweetness. The cool and soft touch of clover under our barefeet. How the leaves tasted (yes my childhood friends and I ate its tender stalks at times), how we would weave bracelets and necklaces from it. Seeing the bees buzzing around and all of those simple pleasures in life that allowed us to be in the moment. We would even lie on the ground and watch the clouds! For me, these simple pleasures also provide a balm of healing (and yes, I even got stung by a bee once but it’s okay after all its all a part of life!)

    1. Amanda Painter Post author

      Pisces Sun: thank you for sharing your lovely images on memories, both personal and collective, and how they move through us.

      And I’m about to make an edit to this piece: though I wrote the Chiron discovery degree as “3+ Taurus,” the plus sign indicates that it should be read as “4 Taurus” (because there is no such thing as a “zero degree,” the place on the zodiac wheel that looks like 0 Taurus is actually the first degree, or 1 Taurus). So the Sabian image for the Chiron discovery degree is “The pot of gold at the end of the rainbow” for 4 Taurus, not the one about the clover.

      But of course, we can walk upon the clover on our way to the end of that rainbow! 🙂 Apologies for any confusion…

  10. Pisces Sun

    Yes, it’s all good, and I just spoke about that rainbow on Eric’s piece on Chiron. I guess I must be thinking about clover and rainbows today as I dwell in the earth.

  11. Pisces Sun

    Amanda, I need to ask however because it really confuses me, how does one determine the degrees on their natal chart on where to read up and where to settle with the degree the planet resides thereon? It really confuses the hell out of me, quite frankly! 🙂 (and please tell me that I need a math degree to do the computation!)

    1. Amanda Painter Post author

      Hi Pisces Sun —

      Thank you for asking!

      The first degree of any sign is designated with the number 00. Although that looks like “the zero degree,” it is not; there is no such thing as “zero degrees,” in the same way that there is no such thing as “zero years old.” Once you are born, you are however minutes old, or hours old, or days/weeks/months old, etc.

      Once a planet lands at 00 of a sign, it is in that sign; it is in the first degree of that sign in the same way that a baby only a few months old is still in the first year of its life. When a baby reaches his or first birthday, he or she has *completed* the first year — and is now in/beginning the second year of life. Likewise, when a planet reaches the degree of a sign marked 01, it has *completed* the first degree — and is now in the *second* degree.

      So, anytime you’re looking at the degree for a planet or house cusp on a chart, the degree number needs to be rounded up to the next number when you write out the degree. You do not have to do any math computations at all. For example, if you see Venus at 05 Pisces, Venus is in the 6th degree of Pisces; if you see Venus at 29 Pisces, Venus is in the 30th degree of Pisces.

      To stick with the Venus in Pisces example (all of this applies to all planets in all signs), Planet Waves usually will write “6 Pisces” to indicate that Venus is at 05 Pisces on a chart. But not always.

      Sometimes you might see us (or other astrologers) write 5+ Pisces when Venus is at 05 Pisces. We are *not* rounding down to the 5th degree; rather, that is just a way to indicate that “05” is the number next to Venus on the chart — but the “+” indicates that, yes, what we are really referring to is the 6th degree of Pisces.

      And just for the sake of being thorough: When you look at a chart, you’ll see the glyph (symbol) for the planet with a bold or larger number next to it. Next to that is the glyph for the sign. And on the other side of the sign glyph is a number in plain or smaller font.

      That plain-font or smaller number indicates the “minutes” of the degree. Just like an hour is divided into 60 minutes, a degree is also divided up into 60 minutes. This enables astrologers to be more precise with the exactitude of aspects — that is, when exactly they are exact. As you might have noticed, it can take a slower planet days or *weeks* to make its way through a single degree of the zodiac (we just saw this with Saturn in the last degree of Scorpio).

      But like I said, in terms of how we *write* what degree of a sign a planet is in, the minutes do not matter — that is, you’re not going to round down.

      Venus at 05 Pisces 10 — (10 minutes into the 5th degree) — is the “6th degree of Pisces”

      Venus at 05 Pisces 57 — (57 minutes into the 5th degree) — is also the “6th degree of Pisces”

      And in both cases, you could still write it as 5+ Pisces, to indicate Venus is in the 6th degree without specifying the minutes.

      Whew….. does that help? I hope it is not too much information!

      1. Pisces Sun

        Oh yes, thank you it helps. I had read somewhere that there is a distinction between even and odd but you didn’t indicate that this is so and your logic makes utter sense but this is perplexing with the 30th degree of a sign, is it then read to be of the next sign?

        1. Amanda Painter Post author

          Hi Pisces Sun — Degree 29 of a sign *is* the 30th (and last) degree of a sign.

          If you start by counting 00 as the first degree, you get to the 30th degree at 29.

          The same way that when a baby is born, that first day of life is day 1, not day 0.

          So if you follow that all the way through all the degrees, when you get to 29 Pisces you have:

          29 Pisces 00 is the first minute of the LAST degree (that is, the 30th degree) of Pisces. Venus is in the 30th degree of Pisces all the way to 29 Pisces 29.

          When Venus leaves 29 Pisces 29, the next degree is 00 Aries 00 — aka, the 1st degree of Aries.

          Does that make sense?

  12. Pisces Sun

    Knowing this today gave me much happiness, my ascendant is 23 Leo (without going up a degree) and never sat well with me but I was embracing the drunken chickens and joked about it with my best friend often but I even told her that I couldn’t understand why I wasn’t the carrier pigeon on a mission because I felt like that was me (the next degree up) one afternoon as we sat over wine discussing the Sabian Symbols. Many of my symbols didn’t make sense to me, I have now read all of them and each one of them make absolute sense to me! Thank you, Amanda for your explanation. But then again, the power of suggestion and believing what we want to believe can always play a part in one’s mind too! 🙂

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