Tips and Tricks for Working With Past Lives and Path of Soul Growth

Part III: The Phase of the Moon at Birth

By C. Marguerite Hafeman ©2010 Dell Horoscope Magazine

The lunation phase in effect at birth consists of the position of the natal Moon relative to the natal Sun. The Moon has been classically defined as a repository for past experience, whether accumulated through reincarnation or inherited though the family. The Sun symbolizes a central ground of true, spiritual self being developed in the current lifetime. Together these two as placed in the houses and signs of the natal chart, reflect where in a cycle of lifetimes working on a particular soul theme, an individual is positioned in their progress. The phase also provides insight into the fundamental path of soul challenge and degree of karmic obligation or balancing one might expect, much more powerfully than considering the Lights on their own merit. The concept of a karmic Moon Phase system originates with the poet W.B. Yeats in his book A Vision; since expanded upon by the work of Marilyn Busteed and Dorothy Wergin. (1)

The simplest diagnostic to start with when examining a natal chart is to note whether the individual was born during the waxing or waning half of the monthly lunar cycle. As astrologer Dana Gerhardt notes, "The waxing hemi-cycle favors action. Its urge is to build, to have a visible impact in the outer world. The waning hemi-cycle favors introspections. Its urge is to ponder the meaning of actions or re-think existing structures. Moon phases divide the world into two types: those who act and those who think." (2) Now let's try viewing the major phases of the Moon in the context of current life karma and the interaction of free will with fate and destiny.

The Moon phase at birth does work as a potent indicator for how much the individual will tend to operate out of unconscious drives, how much free will one will likely be able to impress upon the circumstances of their life, and how much destiny and a requirement for karmic balance will appear to control circumstances. That said, any two people may be born with same Moon phase, however one can be consciously striving towards a highly evolved expression of the basic phase energy, while the other can be willfully pursuing stubborn stupidity and unchecked desires. We have choice, which is the primary function of free will.

Generally, New Moon and on up to First Quarter Moon people are in the process of defining and crystallizing new soul themes; individuals with this placement like to be trailblazers whether on the frontier or in society. Some can easily live without a qualm outside the conventions of "regular" society, while others seek to actively revolutionize the fabric of society itself from a position of power. Motivations tend to originate from the unconscious, so one task in the current lifetime is to become more conscious of what moves the individual and why. Some born in this phase may find it difficult to stay in a permanent relationship as their need for independence and freedom to explore cannot be cramped. Mistakes and dead ends might certainly crop up along the path in life, but new opportunities seem to present often in a fortuitous way as needed. Those born at an actual first quarter square between Moon and Sun are subject to cyclic major crises in the course of the lifetime, as one is "called on the carpet" as it were to adjust expectations and actions; throw out what doesn't work, keep and refine what does. However new mooners in particular seem to get away with a great deal, without necessarily meeting the effects of their causes in this lifetime. Famous examples include ex-Vice President Dick Cheney, conservative pundit Ann Coulter and entertainment icon Madonna.

Waxing or Gibbous Moon people are often quite focused and directed in working towards a specific lifestyle or peak in achievement; their soul theme has crystallized and they are in the process of building concrete manifestations of it. This is a challenging placement, as any dream being converted into material form must endure crises in design and fabrication; then creations must be tempered into a workable vehicle that makes good sense to the larger collective. The individual is always quite concerned with putting a personal stamp upon their expression of genius, therefore may draw the attention of authority or run into more battles with opponents. Fortune might wax and wane in dramatic fashion for these folks but again, new opportunities seem to easily present as needed if an old concept or way of doing things has not sufficed. Famous examples of this phase include movie star Jack Nicholson, rocker Jim Morrison and inventor Nikola Tesla.

Full Moon types are quite complex, tending to polarize life experience into a "me versus them" sort of orientation. Moon in opposition to Sun points to potential splits in the psyche that need to be reconciled, otherwise the person's inner world is to some degree at odds with outer expression. Variations on this theme could include head versus heart, one hand not knowing what the other is doing, or will being chronically at odds with values. Compartmentalization of the psyche makes it easy to project unconscious or undesirable parts of self onto others, or can emerge as dominance-submission dynamics in relationship. This sort of individual can certainly cultivate a very robust ego, but they also have to work on generating consciousness in a holistic state of true individuation, too.

Full mooners tend to have their finger on the pulse of the collective, therefore are often quite successful in their careers. They can perform the classic "tell them what they want to hear and then do what you want to do," better than any other phase. More than a few have difficulty staying in permanent relationships due to a deep need for independence and freedom, coupled with fear of being controlled. Conversely, many excel at exerting control over others. Those that do marry try to maintain some part of their world separate from that of the mate. Famous examples of this placement include real 15th century vampire Elizabeth Bathory, rock musician Robert Plant and tycoon Donald Trump.

Disseminating Moon people are somewhat similar to Gibbous Moon folk; however there is a dynamic shift in the directional flow of life energy. Up to the full moon phase the individual is tending to draw energy and resource to self for the purposes of production and use in developing the life theme; the focus is more self-directed and uniquely personal-creative. The person presents as a creative statement unto themselves. After the full moon the focus of intent changes to adjusting developed creative output for maximum social impact. Ideally, one is giving out one's creative progeny to the world in order to better serve and influence collective needs. The person themselves tends to be more anonymous, all attention is trained on the product being dispensed. The "giving back" of resource can also take the form of imposing one's creative vision upon the collective in a big way, as in the case of Dictator Mao Tse Tung who also marketed himself as a god. Brain damage victim Terri Schiavo and film genius George Lucas have also given the fruits of their labors back to society at large, while they themselves remain relatively unknown.

An individual born with a Moon near or at the Last Quarter crisis phase is likely to encounter a dramatic shift in priorities during the life time. At some point a major nexus of life purpose will drop away, sometimes because the reasons for sustaining it are gone or the lifestyle no longer yields the same personal satisfaction; perhaps an actual karmic toll needs to be paid. Along with this usually disconcerting development, the individual begins somehow to be held ever more exactingly to the principle of what comes around goes around. The potency and immediacy of karmic rebound arising from impulsive choices and thoughtless behavior increases.

Opportunities to thrive can still be plentiful, but more than ever, nothing comes without a price. Ideally, whatever has not been balanced in activity and awareness in the lifetimes before or even early on during the present life, must now be addressed and remedied. The individual's actions must in some way include a form of giving back to the collective, the community, even the earth itself, what was taken in prior lives during more expansive, self-absorbed phases of soul development. Some of these individuals lead lives that certainly appear glamorous; however the theme of disillusionment with life and/or responsibility to society at large likely resonates within. Famous examples with this phase placement include actress Angelina Jolie, English King Henry the VIII, and tragic actor River Phoenix.

The person born during the closing or Balsamic Moon phase is the most marked of all in appearing to have the purpose and direction in life apparently co-opted by destiny; one must catch periodic waves of opportunity that are successively ridden to shore. Often one cannot stay in the career of their choice or educational background; they must adapt to whatever job or opportunity presents. Old Moon people are frequently cast as powerful players in the beginnings or endings of an enterprise, but they are often excluded from the long, peaceful mid-way stretch of an enterprise that can be more fortunate and stable.

However such a person can be extremely adept at generating wealth by entrepreneurial means, inventions, innovations or marrying well. They also can be found surviving in exotic manner without the support of conventional social structures or by operating as the powerful puppet master behind the scenes. Many either cannot tolerate permanent relationships as too confining or they live somewhat concealed under the shell of another's persona. Some find other Old Moon or New Moon types with which to conduct a very open-ended, even spiritual type of relationship that may become primarily platonic over time.

Balsamic mooners usually don't seem to care what conventional society thinks of them. Many render great service in some fashion, however are seldom able to garner full public acknowledgement or take much personal credit for what they do. Unfortunately, some born in this phase use the accumulated genius of lifetimes to pull off a major crime or engineer some sophisticated form of atrocity. Either way, these individuals do indeed seem to lead "fated lives" during which any major areas of neglect in body, soul, life experience or relationship should be addressed or major troubles are sure to follow. Whatever has been avoided, abandoned or subject to abuse is to be healed and released or served out through some element of sacrifice. Seeds are also being sown towards the commencement of a new cycle in evolutionary experience working on a new theme of soul development. Famous examples of Balsamic Moon people include financial trader-swindler Bernie Maddox, communist philosopher Karl Marx and Camilla Parker-Bowles, second wife of Prince Charles of England.

Void of Course Moon: This Moon occurs at the end of a zodiac sign, in which the satellite will make no further classical aspects from that sign; any new aspects will form only after she passes into the next sign. The common meaning attached to this state of affairs is time best spent in spiritual pursuits or pleasure, not a good time to pursue material goals as nothing of significance will happen. (3) This does not mean that the affairs of a person born under such a Moon would be chronically doomed to failure or non-completion.

As the Moon represents the past, emotional coding, social conditioning and the security needs developed thereof, perhaps an individual born under a Void-of-Course Moon is in effect potentially freed from the usual strictures and limitations that can be imposed through the unconscious. This person might potentially have more of the detachment necessary to make breakthroughs in all sorts of directions, be they physical, mental or spiritual. The Void-of-Course natal Moon may symbolize a sort of existential "get out of jail free" card, wherein the individual is graced with the ability to move far past limitations imposed by family, society or environment and the rules, regulations or taboos associated with them.

Conclusion: It's comforting to believe that if an imbalanced soul does not care to resolve their karmic shortcomings, perhaps the ill effects are served up in the next life or moved on into a whole new soul theme cycle, as played out through the apparent intervention of destiny and fate. However some infamous individuals do really seem to hold a pattern in their natal stars, of having functioned as an ever more refined, even archetypal force of evil over many eons. Otherwise, personal experience has demonstrated that the moment one chooses to become conscious of and therefore responsible for the spiritual quality of their individuated self, the necessity for working towards mastery in attitude, action and service in relation to outer world affairs immediately intensifies.

No one lunar phase, or the house and sign in which the Moon is found bespeaks a "newer" or "older" soul in terms of an individual being imbued with certain virtues or accumulated wisdom. Perhaps we exist in essence as stars enmeshed within a universal field of consciousness that is infinite in scope, timeless and multidimensional in construct. What if we do make choices between lifetimes, as to the degree of consciousness we cultivate through challenge, also the rate and range of experience by which we choose to grow from lifetime to lifetime? This concept works well with a postulate put forth by theologian Alan Watts; perhaps universal consciousness initiates a cycle of manifested life, then essentially goes to sleep and forgets about itself. An eternity on heaven and earth can then be spent dancing in the delight of discovering the many faces of sacred self once and again, forever.


(1) Phases of the Moon, A Guide to Evolving Human Nature, by Marilyn Busteed and Dorothy Wergin, American Federation of Astrologers, Inc., Tempe AZ, 1982.

(2) "Moonwatching Part 10: More Moon Secrets," by Dana Gerhardt, The Mountain Astrologer, Cedar Ridge, CA, April/May 2003.

(3) "The Void of Course Moon and Other New Age Neuroticisms," by Joyce Hoen DF, The International Astrologer, Vol. XXVII, Number 3, 1998.


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