A Ritual for Reconciliation on the Gemini Full Moon
On November 23, the moon will reach fullness in the mutable air sign of Gemini. Gemini is a sign that embraces duality and holds curiosity about how opposites can attract. Ruled by Mercury, the planet of communication, commerce, and travel, Gemini helps us build bridges to increase understanding and resolve differences.
This full moon coincides with Thanksgiving, an American celebration that kicks off the holiday season. It’s a holiday that promotes gratitude and cooperation, but does so at the expense of rewriting American history, painting violent colonizers as peacemakers and Native Americans as docile participants who readily agreed to share their land. This warped narrative has shaped how history is told and how we treat the original inhabitants of this land.
We can use this full moon as an opportunity to recognize our roles in perpetuating falsehoods and reconcile our actions with our beliefs. This might extend to how we behave in larger society or it might be very personal. It might involve accepting aspects of ourselves that have become disjointed or been denied. By recognizing our shadows and the purposes they’ve served, we can begin to heal the wounds that keep us stuck.
If you are celebrating Thanksgiving with family, the dinner table can be a great place to begin this ritual. We don’t have the luxury of choosing our families and often when we grow up, we form different beliefs that contradict what we were taught. This can create tension during the holidays, but it can also lead to heightened understanding and broadened perspectives.
It’s almost guaranteed that politics will be discussed at some point during the evening and only you can judge whether you’re in a safe space to share your opinions. If so, consider the fact that people who love you are more likely to listen with an open mind than strangers on the internet. Worry less about converting someone to your beliefs and focus instead of why they are important to you. When others speak, try to listen without getting defensive. Ask questions and seek common ground. We’re in the middle of Mercury Retrograde, so conversations might not go as smoothly as intended. Hold space for disagreements and friction -- conflict is uncomfortable, but so is growth.
Beginning the ritual at the dinner table can help surface emotions for you to process later on in private. Perhaps there are significant aspects of yourself that you hide from relatives and are ready to embrace more openly. You might realize that even though you hold certain beliefs, you’re not actively supporting them through your actions. Once you recognize the disconnect, you can work to mend it.
On a piece of paper, write a list of five to ten personality traits or habits that you consider negative. Spend a few minutes looking at this list and thinking about where these qualities come from and how they take shape in your life. Then, next to each item, write down what you perceive to be the opposite, or positive trait that you wish you had. For example, in the first column you might write something like “bad temper” and in the second column you might write “patience.”
Once both lists are complete, return to the top and consider the purpose of each negative quality. Perhaps your poor temper gave you a voice when your opinion was not valued. Write down the different ways these traits have served your journey.
Next, look at the list of positive qualities that you would like to embody. Write down a time when you exemplified this trait. To use the above example, you might reference Thanksgiving dinner and how you patiently waited for someone to share a viewpoint you disagreed with. Do this for every item on the positive list.
Then you will build a bridge between the positive and negative aspects by reciting the list as such: “My bad temper has helped me stand my ground when others tried to ignore me, but I’m beginning to embody patience by listening to others even when we disagree.” In doing this, you honor the shadow aspect, while also reaffirming that you are capable of change.
As the rest of the moon cycle unfolds, you can refer to this list and set an intention to be more conscientious of your actions. Vow to forgive yourself when you revert to old habits and stay present so that you can rise above automatic instincts.