This article first appeared on Mooncircles. It is reprinted here with permission of the author.

"Meditators become like 'ambassadors of the Universe,' whose mission is to display the qualities of the Divine King or Queen to whom they have dedicated their lives in eternal service."
--Pir Vilayat Inayat Khan
According to astrological tradition, we are each born under a star of destiny. Indeed, it is said that it takes 26,000 years for the unique natal chart that marks each birth to repeat itself in the heavens above. The secret fate encoded in our chart is a sign that, as the Jungian thinker James Hillman has written, "We are each born called." Imprinted on our souls the split second it assumes a human body is the pattern of a purpose, the secret reason of our existence. Decoding that stellar message and living it out is the important work of all our lives.

If there is an astrologically-appointed time to discovering and incarnating the glory of who you were born to be, this Leo New Moon is it. Occurring at the powerful middle degree of Leo and exactly conjunct born-to-be-me Mars, this lunation is a sign in the sky that the time is at hand to individuate your destiny. Casting a wide royal aura is Jupiter, King of the Heavens and Olympian ruler of the gods and goddesses, who has just entered Leo. Close by is the asteroid goddess Vesta, attuning the bright stars in this show to a higher octave of sacred devotion.

Many thinkers tell us these days that we are each born with a mission or purpose to fulfill. But discovering the nature of that calling is more like an Odysseus-like wandering through strange lands and across wide oceans than a clarion-clear set of instructions. We think our purpose is one thing, and then, before we have even grabbed hold of it, it shape-shifts into something else. In my own life, I have come to think of purpose more in terms of a quality or an archetype than a specific job description. Like a magnet, our lives constellate around that core quality. According to the Sufi teacher Pir Vilayat, there is a celestial realm of archetypes, a "Divine Treasury" of qualities. Our spiritual task is to bring these qualities into creative form through the medium of our personalities. As a writer, astrologer, meditator, mother, friend, and seeker, for instance, the twin flames that burn on the altar of my heart are the qualities of wisdom and inspiration. Inspiring others to see the bigger picture, to focus on what really matters, and to awaken the deeper, ancient knowledge hidden within each of our souls is the orient of my life.

So this New Moon, take time to reflect on becoming who you were born to be. Rather than focusing on a specific task, go to the center of your heart and meditate on the core strength of your soul. Perhaps you are here to bring beauty, whether through art, environmental justice, or fashion. Perhaps you are here to help heal the suffering of the world, whether through your writing, activism, or as a physician. Or maybe you are here to bring insight and truth where there is confusion and ignorance. One way to sharpen this practice is to highlight the central theme that runs like a golden thread through the disparate factors of your life, weaving a distinct pattern in the process.

After spending some time contemplating the quality that burns brightest for you, imagine that archetype as a warm and luminous flame within your heart. This is the flame that empowers your heart with courage, conviction, and the energy necessary to accomplish your purpose. As you contemplate the flame, gaze deeply into its fiery depths. At the center of the red aura of this flame is a blue core of diamond clear light; after some minutes meditating on this image, imagine that an extraordinary being of light begins to take shape within its aura. Gazing more closely, you realize that this is the star-angel of your divine purpose - the person you were born to become.

Close your meditation by making a vow of commitment to serve this being within. Then turn your attention to the sky, where the proud Leo ambassadors of Light and Purpose are aligned: Sun, Moon, Mars, Vesta, and Jupiter. And let the star within your heart take its place alongside these luminaries, shining its light over the darkness of the Earth.

(Look for the Aquarius Full Moon August 22, 2002.)

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