Just before his death on July 17, Rep. John Lewis insisted on visiting Black Lives Matter Plaza in Washington, DC. “I just had to see and feel it for myself that, after many years of silent witness, the truth is still marching on,” said the civil rights leader and congressman in a New York Times Op-Ed. Lewis was grateful that he’d lived long enough to witness the recent uprising of people calling for justice. He said he was filled with hope for the next chapter of the great American story. And, in a phrase that perfectly sums up the courageous life he led (and will be the name of a forthcoming movie about his life), Lewis called on us to redeem the soul of America by getting into “good trouble” – such as voting, speaking out and otherwise participating in the democratic process. This, he said, is how we build what he called the Beloved Community – a nation and society at peace with itself.
Peace, justice, hope and freedom are in the spotlight now as we approach Monday’s Aquarius Full Moon (August 3, 8:58 a.m. PDT). Luna will be full in communal Aquarius, opposite the Sun in individualistic Leo. We’re asked to balance the sense of self and ego that the Leo Sun represents with the concern for and connection to the larger family of man that the Aquarius Moon demands. Adding a jolt of intensity, Uranus in Taurus squares the Sun and Moon. We may feel the ground beneath us shake, and unexpected events might occur. Yet surprising breakthroughs and progress are also at hand. Embrace the unexpected rather than trying to maintain control as old ways of being break down to make way for the new.
At this Full Moon, try to groove with the changes if you’re thrown off course. Societal and personal norms are morphing at an unprecedented rate. This freedom-oriented Full Moon, which happens in determined, fixed signs, spotlights security issues (money, employment, human rights), and demands for reform are apt to be getting even louder. Mama Earth, as represented by Uranus in Taurus, has been crying out for change for some time, and we may experience some earth changes such as storms and fires. Yet the feeling of liberation can be exhilarating, so embrace it if you can!
Even if you can’t join with others at this social, communal Aquarius Full Moon, find a way to celebrate it. Whatever may be going on, be sure to stay grounded in your daily spiritual practice – whatever keeps you connected to a sense of higher purpose and well-being, whether it’s a formal chanting or meditation practice, or simply sitting in the garden, going for a walk or snuggling with your pet. If you’ve been feeling stuck, change your routine. Take a drive somewhere new or watch a funny movie. Or maybe even get yourself into a little “good trouble” if you’re feeling inspired!
In times of uncertainty, it’s good to remember what Rev. Michael Beckwith said in a recent sermon, “It’s okay to be happy and joyful even when things look bleak, because you have to be a representative of a joy-filled world. You must represent the world that can’t be seen yet. So be in love with the world that most people can’t even see.”
John Lewis, who was surely in love with this unseen new world, said, “In my life I have done all I can to demonstrate that the way of peace, the way of love and nonviolence is the more excellent way. Now it is your turn to let freedom ring. When historians pick up their pens to write the story of the 21st Century, let them say that it was your generation who laid down the heavy burdens of hate at last and that peace finally triumphed over violence, aggression and war. So I say to you, walk with the wind, brothers and sisters, and let the spirit of peace and the power of everlasting love be your guide.”