Full Moon Cycle of Aries
September 23 - October 22
The overall theme or lesson of the Emperor/Aries lunar cycle is all about the cause and affect of mortality. The things we do, the decisions we make, the pressures of our mortality can influence our actions and reactions to the world around us. See how the minor cards reate to this theme.
The MAAT T a r o t calendar begins with the Full Moon cycle of Aries that occurs before Halloween. Also known as the Witch's New Year, this is the time of the year when all that is green changes to t h e beautiful gold, oranges and reds of autumn. The Death of the 'Green Man' and his transformation into the 'Lord of Shadows' signals the coming of the dark days of winter. The season of autumn is the metaphor for our own mortality. Just as I was finishing the Ancestral Path Tarot, I came across a passage in the book "Egypt Canaan and Israel in Ancient Times" (Donald B. Redford; Princeton University Press; 1992). I found a word on pages 229- 231 used by the ancient Egyptians that leapt off the page. The word was "Em-par-Re," which translates to "In the House of RA." This was the title given to the immigrants of high status to Egypt. Em-par-Re was a diplomatic title for upper class foreigners wishing to become Egyptian citizens. The idea was that Ra (the sun) ruled over all the lands, and even a person of high social status was lowly compared to him but could be acknowledged as being a resident of the House of Ra. Quite possibly this could be the origin of the word 'emperor'. The aristocratic foreigner wishing to immigrate would be given the title Em-par-Re, followed by the name of the Egyptian official who was giving him this immigration status. For example, Octavius of Rome (who was the first Roman leader to use the title 'emperor' of Rome) went to Egypt with his armies, claimed to be the ruler and made Egypt part of Rome. Of course, given language barriers and cultural perspective, the Egyptians thought, "This foreign leader must be asking to become a citizen of Egypt." An Egyptian official named Augustus would have then named Octavius 'Em-par-Re Augustus'. Octavius then goes back to Rome thinking, in his blatant Roman bias, "I am Emperor Augustus of Rome, conqueror of Egypt." Obviously after 4000+ years of sovereignty, Egypt's worldview did not put Rome at the center of the civilized world. The Egyptians believed that it was their god Ra that ruled over all the lands, after all Ra was seen everywhere they traveled. Their Pharaoh was simply Ra's physical representative on Earth; a Head Priest, Shaman or Channel.
The Emperor in MAAT Tarot (the cycle of Full Moon in Aries) is represented by the ram- headed god Amun Re, chief of all gods in Ancient Egyptian culture. Amun-Re gave life to all creatures and beautiful animals. He was the most ancient in heaven, the eldest in all the world and was thought to dwell in all things. As the season changes and the light of the sun weakens, we observe the life force of the plants also fade. In Celtic cultures it is the season when the Green Man dies only to be reborn as the Dark Lord of Shadows, Lord of the Hunt. In autumn, hunter-gatherers turned to hunting wild game as vegetation became sparse. This full moon is known in some cultures as the Hunter's Moon, signaling a time for the herds to be thinned, assuring survival of healthy, well-fed animals. After the domestication of animals occurred, this moon signaled a time to bring the animals indoors.
For the people who had to sustain their domesticated animals through the winter it didn't make sense to keep large numbers of male animals around. Males would fight with each other for dominance, and eat too much of the winter-feed. A single, large, beautiful male would be chosen for breeding purposes and the other male animals would be harvested for human sustenance. The female animals, often pregnant, would give birth in the spring to restock the herd. The Hunter's Moon reminds us that death is part of the healthy transitions of life and that our time on earth will someday come to pass. As the green growth of the garden of Earth loses its chlorophyll and fades into its true colors, the season of the hunt begins. We are also reminded of our own transitory glory in the house of Ra.
The message of the cycle of Full Moon in Aries is, as the trees go from uniform green to the plant's natural variety of brilliant hues, to 'show our true colors' and let our inner selves shine through. We are young, and strong only for a short time. We should not be afraid to be who we are in this life. Our physical time is limited, so live from the heart, without the shackles of regret. What we believe about ourselves is what we will become. We should never wait to become who we are for it is later than we think. Our mortality is the gift that gives us a reason for self-focus. The Emperor teaches us that while it is good to serve others, we should never forget our own value.
Other names: Green Man (post-agriculture); Horned God of Fertility (pre-agriculture); The Dagda (the Good God with horns of ram, deer, or bull); Dionysis; God of the Vine; Osiris; Cernunnos; Pan; Arthur; Robin; Dumuzi; Annual King; Herne the Hunter; God of Nature; God of the Underworld and Astral Plane; Great Father; Lord of Light; Hu Gad (Druidic); Belatucadros; Vitiris; Amon Re (ram-horned God of all living creatures); All ancient gods of the Hunt
Symbols: Ram; Stag; Bull; Horned Serpent; animals
Attributes: Virility; fertility; physical love; nature; woodlands; reincarnation; cross roads; wealth and commerce; hunter-gatherer; oneness with nature; mortality
Aries Full Moon key phrase: ' I am'
In a Reading: This card represents a person of power who is often at the center of the lives of the people around them. This person is not afraid to speak up for people who are too timid to speak up for themselves. This personality type makes no apologies, for the way they are, if you don't like them its your problem. They realize life is too short to wait for someday and they never miss an opportunity. When seeking information about timing this card would represent a critical turning point, with a now or never; do it your own way; take matters into your own hands tone.
The New Moon in Libra-Tells an Inuit story about the balance of life and death.
In a Reading: This is a card that says nobody wins and nobody losses we just break even. The delicate balance of life and death.
Traditional Meaning: a stalemate, a delicate balance, the restoration of peace, a truce.
Is there something in your life that has become unhealthy or stagnant? What is it that needs to be cut out or added in order for things to improve? Have you taken responsibility for your actions or do you just blame others when things go wrong? Remember that for every action there is an equal and opposite reaction. Go ahead be who you are, do what ever you want, but be ready to take on the results of your actions and be prepared to afford others the same freedom.
First Quarter Moon in Capricorn-Speaks of the spiritual heartbreak that comes from seeking power over others.
Examine for a moment the phenomenon of heartbreak. Our hearts break when we feel loss. But science tells us that there is no loss, that energy cannot be destroyed it can only change form. The water molecules we drink are the same water molecules the dinosaurs drank. Perhaps the heartbreak is more the pain of losing control. When a lover leaves us our hearts break, when our children live their lives the way they want to our hearts break. When someone dies our heartbreaks. But truly this too is about loss of control. Love does not die it only changes form. The memories never change this we can savor. If we love without needing to possess or control if we can love with an open hand then we could learn to love without expectations and far less pain
In a Reading: When the 3 of swords comes up in a reading it speaks of a broken heart. It means pain from loss through death or emotional break-up. It covers pain of all types. This card can also represent surgery in a health reading. In this deck it clearly speaks of the oppression of the spiritual by the dogmatic.
Traditional tarot meaning: mother's broken heart, or the broken heart of the Mary mother of God. Sorrow and pain followed healing. The clearing away of the obsolete to make room for what is new.
The Full moon in Aries tells a story about the maimed King or the Fisher King.
Imagine for a moment that you live in a time when the powers of government were headed by god-kings. Suppose if you will that these governments were corrupt and taxing people without mercy, making slaves of the majority of its citizens. What tactics would you take if you had the power to do something about it?
In a Reading: The King of Swords is a man of war, and he is willing to put his life on the line for his people, his beliefs and his way of life. He has the ability to hide in plain sight. He uses his intelligence to outwit his opponents. He can use his sword as a tool or a weapon.
Traditional tarot meaning: a mature married man, and the zodiac sign Libra.
The Last Quarter Moon in Cancer- Tells the story of "The Ice Man"the 5,300-year-old 'iceman' found in 1991 on the Hauslabjoch pass.
Consider for a moment what you would want the future to know about you. If you keep a diary someday your diary could keep you. Unless you preserve a clear message for the future how will your descendants remember you? What do you want then to remember about your life? About who you are, about your traditions, foods, clothes, likes and dislikes? How curious will the future be about your day-to-day life? How much do you treasure the stories passed down in your family.
In a Reading: For me this card represents our connection with the past. This card invokes the use of archeological evidence, forensic sciences, as well as cultural histories, to open new doorways to our ancestral past in an effort to learn more about ourselves.
Traditional tarot meaning: rest, or taking a rest, although sometimes defined as a monument to a war hero or monuments in general.
©2008 Julie Cuccia-Watts