Star power

Tarotscopes that Slay: Get your astrology read for filth (Feb. 4 – March 5)

Brandon Alter holds up a tarot card

Welcome to Aquarius Season, my loves! One way to think of Aquarius Season is as a direct response to Capricorn Season. Consider that Capricorn values authority and structure, hard work and status. Aquarius flies in the face of all that. Aquarius is the alien, the outsider, the fairy godmother, the wizard, the magical stranger, the exotic visitor. Aquarius rebels against the institutions that Capricorn builds and upholds. Instead, Aquarius innovates and invents new ways of being, new structures to protect us, new means of connecting with each other.

Aquarius is the sign of the future. It challenges us to think big, to go further and above all, to never conform. If there’s a sign that waves a freak flag, Aquarius is it! As we move through this next cycle, allow yourself to be an honorary Aquarian. Get freaky. Challenge the status quo. Don’t diminish your eccentricity. Let your uniqueness pave your way forwards. Being weird is a blessing and we need more of it now than ever before. Where you allow the uninhibited expression of your whole self, you pave the way for others to do the same. In the Tarot, Aquarius is ruled by eighteenth card, The Star. Be a star. Light up the dark around you.

The New Moon in Aquarius will happen on Monday, February 4th at 1:03 PM (PST). And this is a seriously sweet and potent moon, with the Sun and Moon at 15 degrees Aquarius and Mercury sitting nearby at 19 degrees. Mercury is the planet of communication which means that this New Moon is a rare window where you find it easier to speak deeply with yourself. Your inner Sun and inner Moon have a clear slate to start their relationship over. Remember that New Moon’s are initiating energies. And the Moon, as the closest heavenly body to Earth, rules over our emotions, our needs and our heart. This New Moon is an invitation into a new emotional cycle and how you honor those needs in your life! And with all this happening in the electric and cosmic sign of Aquarius, the question you should really be asking is this: How does MY heart want to contribute to the world?

I would suggest putting aside a little private time on Moonday (ie. Monday). Maybe even sit somewhere dark, turn off the lights or just close your eyes. Place your hands on your heart center and ask this important question: How does MY HEART want to contribute to the world? There’s no right answer, there’s just your answer. Maybe there are lots of answers. The point isn’t to lock it down, the point is that you’re beginning this deeper conversation with your heart.

When I think about the Aquarius New Moon I think about the James Baldwin quote: We can make America what America must become. We build a new future by changing how we engage with the present. And if we could let our hearts encounter the world, not our heads, imagine the world we could give birth to. By applying the unique contribution of your heart toward the building of a more aligned future is truly tapping into what this New Moon in Aquarius energy is all about.

Promo shot for The Spiritual Gays podcast

The exciting and aggravating thing with Astrology is that there’s always something happening. But I can’t get into all that here because there just isn’t space or time. So my husband and I encourage you to please tune into The Spiritual Gayz, our twice-monthly podcast dedicated to exploring the wide reaches of spirituality without pretending that it all makes sense. Our aim is to make all this esoteric wisdom as accessible as a Real Housewives reunion because these ancient practices are our birthright and we’ve been disconnected from them for too long! So catch up and catch on to the hidden messages of the cosmos with us. Tune in, subscribe, follow us on Instagram and please rate us 5 stars! How do you find it? Easy! CLICK HERE!

You’ll notice the design of the cards I selected for your Tarotscopes is different this moonth. As an Aquarian myself, I couldn’t help but feel the call to shake shit up. In the spirit of eccentricity and innovation, I have used Salvador Dali’s Tarot Universal. He wasn’t an Aquarius, he was actually another Fixed Sign, Taurus. But my hope is that by entering into his unique visual style, your relationship with the Tarot expands and deepens. Aquarius rules over Technology, Humanity and also Drugs. It was Dali himself who said, “I don’t do drugs. I am drugs.” I think that by entering into his visual world, we do enter an altered state. And in this altered state we can gain power and insight over our daily life and the deeper waters in which we swim.

You’ll find your Collective and Individual Tarotscopes below. Read for your Sun Sign. If you know your Rising Sign, read that too! Remember these messages are meant to inspire and empower you to life your best life.

COLLECTIVE CARD

Five of Pentacles

Five of pentacles

The card I pulled for all of us this moonth is the Five of Pentacles. I want to remind you that Fives in the Tarot are sacred contractions. They ask us to grow lean, so that we are prepared for the expansion to come. The Fives aren’t easy, but they are important. The message they usually bring is: Break down to break through. We need to stop and notice where we are hitting our heads against the wall. We need to honor that certain aspects of our life have a hit a rock bottom. Once we accept that, we change it. But we can’t keep walking around pretending like we aren’t constantly engaged in a deep struggle.

Five of Pentacles says time to let that struggle go. See it, thank it, say goodbye. That’s how Japanese tidying expert Marie Kondo suggests parting with physical objects, by thanking it before you get rid of it. And her new show has inspired the country to start getting clear with their intentions around physical possessions. I think the reason we are all so collectively taken with this concept is because we, as a country, have become overly cluttered. All of us are hoarders in some way. And I don’t just mean with physical stuff but that’s a perfectly good place to start. The Five of Pentacles can help us slice out the old, the unintentional, the useless, thoughts, feelings and junk we’ve let overrun our lives. It’s just like taking a breath. Out with the old. In with the new.

AQUARIUS

10 of Pentacles

10 of Pentacles

What is the difference between scarcity and abundance? What is the shift that brings someone from rock bottom back to the top of the mountain? Why is Oprah so fucking rich and the rest of us still struggling? The answer to all of these questions is GRATITUDE. This moonth, while in your season, is your crash course in up-leveling your gratitude game. Pay attention to what you have will always bring you more, while paying attention to what you lack will whittle away the precious little you own. This card, the 10 of Pentacles, is the wealth card. It speaks to abundance and reward. But health is wealth too. So, too, is having a roof over your head, a healthy dog, a car that runs, friends that love you, work that satisfies you, the sunlight on your face, the smell of fresh brewed coffee… Abundance takes many forms. But it’s yours for the taking this cycle, so notice how blessed you are and prepare your to receive the blessings. Start by looking around you. It’s chessy AF but the present is called a present for a reason. It’s where you are most empowered and blessed. Right here, exactly where you are.

***Schedule your own reading or healing with Brandon here and follow him on Instagram @thebrandonalter and on Twitter @thebrandonalter.***

PISCES

6 of Cups

6 of Cups

Sixes in the Tarot are the expansions that come from having contracted in the Fives. In the case of Cups, the Six is the sweet nectar that soothes the grief of the Five. It is the healing card. And it invites its recipient into the healing waters of joy and serenity. It calls forth the inner child, that pure being in all of us, to step forward and claim their rightful place. But some of us have inner wounded children– let’s be real, most of us have inner wounded children. So what can we do to heal our inner child? We parent it. We have an inner mom and dad just as much as an inner child. And this card challenges you to be the fair and loving parent that you lacked when you were younger. Healing asks us to notice where in the past we got stuck, so that we can rewrite our relationship to it and move forwards unhindered by our circumstances. Where is your inner child still getting stuck? And how can you unstick it for good?

***Schedule your own reading or healing with Brandon here and follow him on Instagram @thebrandonalter and on Twitter @thebrandonalter.***

ARIES

7 of Pentacles

7 of Pentacles

The Seven of Pentacles is a very practical card. It speaks to us about the intersection of life’s two most precious resources, your time and your energy. Simply put, are using it wisely? Because if you don’t like apples, why are you running a whole orchard? You know what I’m saying? Have you been spending too much of your time or your energy on things that aren’t going to grow into things you like? Because I believe the universe gives us more of what we already have– so if you don’t want more, stop doing it. At its essence, the Seven of Pentacles asks us to really consider what we are tending with our time and energy. What are you growing with your life? Life is long but it’s not infinite. We have time but not unlimited time. The Seven of Pentacles is a wake up call to ensure that you’re not lying to yourself and wasting your time building a dream you wouldn’t even want to live in. Time to change your path and chart a course for joy.

***Schedule your own reading or healing with Brandon here and follow him on Instagram @thebrandonalter and on Twitter @thebrandonalter.***

TAURUS

10 of Swords Rx

10 of Swords (reversed)

A long time ago I used to be a smoker. Like half a pack a day. And every so often I would wake up in the morning and think: I could quit today. Now some days I would roll over, grab a cig and immediately ignore the thought. But other times I would seize that opportunity and I would quit– for like a couple of weeks. I tell you this story because the Ten of Wands is a lot like those windows. There are moments in life, portals, that show up and if we are ready we can leap through them. They are cosmic shortcuts and they don’t last long. The Ten of Wands is one of these shortcuts through the slings and arrows of your mind. This card signifies that you are awake enough to realize that there is no master above yourself. You are your own guru and as a result, you will have to shepherd yourself. But the time is ripe to leave all that old conditioning and programming behind. You are free if you step through the portal, but you have to step.

***Schedule your own reading or healing with Brandon here and follow him on Instagram @thebrandonalter and on Twitter @thebrandonalter.***

GEMINI

The Hermit

The Hermit

The Hermit is just that, the invitation inwards. The Hermit revels in solitude because he is never lonely. On the contrary, the Hermit takes to himself because in his aloneness he connects most deeply with his heart. In his profound aloneness he meets his ancestors. In his profound aloneness he connects with the oneness of all things. The Hermit is a pretty trippy dude, high on esoteric wisdom, fully committed to seeking the innermost truth. He represents a call, a call from your own inner teacher. Will you heed the call? It will require setting aside some time. It will require the initial uncomfortableness of facing yourself without distraction. Many people are afraid of the Hermit because this is a world of distraction and the Hermit sees it like the poison it is. The Hermit knows that the one true medicine is self-knowledge and there is no replacement for it. This moonth is your Hermit Moonth, charming Gemini. Turn all the way inwards. Stoke your own inner flame.

***Schedule your own reading or healing with Brandon here and follow him on Instagram @thebrandonalter and on Twitter @thebrandonalter.***

CANCER

The Hierophant Rx

Hierophantos is a Greek word that means priest. And in Ancient Greece the Hierophantos were exactly that. They were a sacred interpreter of initiatory rites. But they were not the sacred itself. We might think of them as the Pope or the Shaman. They served as the bridge between ordinary reality and the invisible world. This card symbolizes the esoteric forms of a spiritual tradition in order to achieve that transcendent esoteric wisdom. But I’ve been thinking of the Hierophant a little differently these days. The Hierophant is ruled by Taurus, an earth sign, practical and tangible. So what if this card signifies a portal opening up? There’s a physical opening in your world that’s inviting you into a mysterious and spiritual awakening. You job isn’t to understand it, but rather jump all the way through it. The right books are appearing on your path, the right teachers too. Let your deeper learning begin. So long as you carve out the time and space for your awakening, Spirit will find you and lead you where you need to go.

***Schedule your own reading or healing with Brandon here and follow him on Instagram @thebrandonalter and on Twitter @thebrandonalter.***

LEO

4 of Swords Rx

4 of Swords (reversed)

The Four of Swords represent a clearing in our lives. A grassy patch of earth under a clear blue sky. We sit down and we look back towards the dark tangled woods. Now that we are safe in this clearing we can begin to think about what really happened back there, in the woods of our past. The trauma is over. You are safe. Now, before you move forwards and make the same mistakes, you must look back and learn the final painful lessons of your progress. You may not feel like you have the time for this sort of self-reflection right now– but it is imperative that you do so. What we resist, persists. This is a huge opportunity for you to break out of a very old cycle, but in order to break it for good, you must see how it operated, how it ensnared you, how you were complicit in partnering with it. Only by mining our failures and shame, our trauma and toxic relationships, can we ensure a new adventure unshadowed by our past. The Four of Swords is where you sit down and clear you heart of the past, but not before adding a few more pearls to your strand of wisdom.

***Schedule your own reading or healing with Brandon here and follow him on Instagram @thebrandonalter and on Twitter @thebrandonalter.***

VIRGO

Knight of Pentacles Rx

Knight of Pentacles (reversed)

The Knight of Pentacles is the workhorse of the deck. He’s got his head down and his nose to the grindstone. But he’s not just a hired hand. The Knight is the producer, the person that knows how to move a project along. The Knight understands the practical magic required to take an idea and spin it into reality. You are this energy, this moonth, gentle Virgo. You are the force necessary to make progress happen. But I’m feeling you doubting your own power. Now is not the time to listen to your inner critic. Put them on hold, ok honey? Your job is to keep pushing the vision along. Keep working hard, hold the positive outcome in mind and don’t worry if it seems like it’s taking forever. You will succeed. This dream is wanting to be manifest through you. It will help you. But you have to act first. Let the dream find you toiling away. Then it will happily assist.

***Schedule your own reading or healing with Brandon here and follow him on Instagram @thebrandonalter and on Twitter @thebrandonalter.***

LIBRA

King of Cups

I really love Dali’s interpretation of this card because it speaks to all the facets of what it means to be a healer. The King of Cups is the emotional magus of the deck. A King of Hearts, his own and others. He is therapist and nurse, storyteller and confessor to all the subjects of his kingdom. He renews and restores everyone with whom he comes in contact. But he also knows his limits. He sets firm boundaries to protect himself and his subjects. I think the King of Cups is any human who has been through hell and back and can say, hey, I survived. I know what it’s like. And I can understand you. The King of Cups May be the most powerful card in the deck. Because there is nothing more powerful than being seen clearly and completely. There is nothing more powerful than being accepted exactly as you are. Your task this moonth is to hold that sort of non-judgmental healing space for others. How can anyone completely love and accept someone else? By starting with themselves.

***Schedule your own reading or healing with Brandon here and follow him on Instagram @thebrandonalter and on Twitter @thebrandonalter.***

SCORPIO

Ace of Swords

Ace of Swords

Game over. Start again. Have you been feeling all the forces of your life trying to get you to stop and start over? Because they have been, gurl. They’ve been working overtime to get your attention. The Ace of Swords represents a lighting bolt in your brain chemistry that initiates a BRAND NEW STORY for your life. What if you were a legend that your descendants told around a campfire? What would that epic story be? We must consider the personal Myths we make with the living of our lives. Is your story one that empowers you to take on your day? Or is your story a sad ballad that sucks you dry? This is the season for a new story. Ditch your past. Clean out your head. Your thoughts are stale and covered in fear. Seriously though, you need to get out of your head and get into a new attitude. I know this is easier said than done. But the Ace of Swords, especially in this direct position, reflects that you are being uniquely assisted at this time to do this. So don’t delay. It will never be easier than right now to release your inherited programming, all those old fear-based beliefs passed down by your ancestors, and step into a clean and clear heart that will deliver you to the shores of your dreams.

***Schedule your own reading or healing with Brandon here and follow him on Instagram @thebrandonalter and on Twitter @thebrandonalter.***

SAGITTARIUS

Four of Cups Rx

Four of Cups (reversed)

Hey Party Gurl, even the party has to take a break sometime or else the party stops being fun. And I think even you would admit that being the life of the party has lost its appeal. Don’t worry. You can still be the shining nightlife fixture you always were. But for the next few weeks, sober up from the bright lights and the big city. Take some time to sift through your heart. The Four of Cups wants to partner with you to help build a new emotional foundation for your year to come. But in order to build that foundation you have to stop dancing on the floorboards. Step outside your house, your heart. What do you see? What needs dealing with? Think of this next moonth as rehab for your heart. You’re going to get sober from the things you do to numb your senses. You’re going to wake up from the self-induced sleep you put yourself in. You are a bright, sparkling, truth seeking, fire goddess– but I need you to take some time away from the world so you can remember your own worth, not in your reflection, but in your own experience of your brilliance. The things we love lose their luster when we over-indulge. Be strict with yourself this month and next moonth you’ll have earned your revelry.

***Schedule your own reading or healing with Brandon here and follow him on Instagram @thebrandonalter and on Twitter @thebrandonalter.***

CAPRICORN

Ace of Wands

The Ace of Wands is when our spirit catches on fire. It’s a big bang of connection and creativity. I always imagine the Ace of Wands like a lightning bolt that illuminates the sky. You are feeling into the crackling electricity of your own relationship to the cosmos. And now you can start to have some fun bringing this dynamic energy to where your life is feeling stuck. You are the firecracker that must be lit. If you are feeling bored or stagnant, it’s your job to keep yourself engaged. Consider where the flow of energy has gotten blocked and then tear that dam down. Or perhaps you are being tasked with lighting your peers or bosses or employees on fire. The passion and excitement of the Ace of Wands needs to be transmitted through you. Get others as fired up about your dreams and goals as you are. The more they can feel your passion the more catching it will be!

***Schedule your own reading or healing with Brandon here and follow him on Instagram @thebrandonalter and on Twitter @thebrandonalter.***

BRANDON ALTER is a queer healer, Tarot reader, teacher and writer living in Los Angeles. He is passionate about sharing spiritual tools that have helped him reconnect to the wisdom of his heart. He is the Tarot reader in residence for The Numinous and he co-hosts The Spiritual Gayz with his husband, a twice-monthly podcast dedicated to exploring the wide reaches of spirituality, without pretending that it all makes sense. Brandon’s mom took him to his very first psychic when he was seven and gave him his first Tarot deck when he was eleven. Since then he has devoted himself to the study of Tarot, Yoga, Pilates, Reiki, Astrology and Shamanic Skills.

Visit www.brandonalterwellness.com to learn more. And to sign up for his twice-monthly newsletter, click here.