Total solar eclipses are an incredible visual spectacle, I think we can all agree, but they're also a spectacle of personal and communal growth. As you might notice, around eclipse time, everything — events, feelings, thoughts — take on a more fated quality. In astrology, eclipses are like a portal for exponential growth. Specifically, eclipses are a time of rapid change, either from internal or external circumstances. We are forced to face change in a way that might be uncomfortable, but that ultimately lead to maturity. Lunar eclipses and solar eclipses are both times when sudden changes occur in our lives, but many people don't understand the different ways these changes take form. Here are a few ways you can interpret what the solar eclipse means spiritually for you in your life.
Lunar eclipses always occur at the same time as a full moon. In astrology, the moon is the planet associated with a passive, feminine energy. This is the planet of our subconscious desires and our emotional lives. It is the planet that is most closely associated with our intuition, our ability to nurture (both others and ourselves).
The full moon is a time of harvesting, of reaping what we've sown and of throwing out the weeds. Anything we have planted that hasn't grown correctly needs to be pulled up and thrown out, in order to start over, OR we need to take a look at what needs more nurturing and care in order to grow in the ways we want it to.
Therefore, the lunar eclipse is a time when we are forced to change in an inward way. take into account the ways in which we are failing ourselves, and to rid ourselves of these patterns. If you've been longing for a relationship to improve by waiting for the other person to change, the lunar eclipse will present you with the facts; that you either need to accept the other person, or change yourself.
A solar eclipse is the type of eclipse we will be experiencing on Aug. 21. Solar eclipses in astrology always occur at the same time as a new moon. In astrology, the sun is the planet that represents our focus, our most personal desires, goals, and our external self. It is the planet of our personality, our self-expression, the tangible ways we interact in the world. It's the planet that governs our extroversion, the personal significance of our goals and desires, and who we are at our most outgoing.
The new moon is a time for putting our goals into tangible practice. It's a time to take the necessary steps toward what we want to create for ourselves. When we take a trip, first we must draw up a map to get there. The new moon is when we pack up our shit, get in the car, and start driving.
Therefore, the solar eclipse provokes changes that are more external, when events outside of us might get in the way of what we want and the path we must take to get it. It forces us to find a different route to our goals. Generally, the changes that a solar eclipse ushers in are positive, as the sun is categorized as a positive planet in astrology. We may be pushed forward into a new job before we think we're even ready, and the eclipse will show us just how ready we really are.
Ultimately, a solar eclipse is meant for us to demand more of ourselves, and the events around it will prove to be a test of our strength and resolve to achieve our dreams. Be sure to embrace the changes with open arms and an open mind.
This post was originally published on Aug. 14, 2017. It was updated on Aug. 5, 2019.