Astrologically, the Autumn Equinox is marked by the Sun moving into the sign of Libra, at 2.30pm on 22nd September this year here in the UK. Just as the sun is rising and setting at the midpoint between it’s most northern and southern positions, and the days and nights are of equal length, the sign of Libra marks the midpoint of the cycle of the zodiac, the fulcrum on which the whole annual solar cycle balances. The first six signs, from Aries through to Virgo, describe the individual journey of learning about the self. Libra is the first sign to look beyond the individual and begin to form relationships with external energies, with other people and also with the world around us. This is the beginning of our connection to society, starting with our one to one relationships. Libra season, heralded by the Autumn Equinox, is a time to check in with those relationships, to pay attention to the people who mean the most to us and the connection between us.
Like the often turbulent weather at this time of seasonal transition, Libra carries an energy of balance which can bring plenty of movement as we work to bring ourselves and the world around us into balance. We may be moving between polarities and even extremes, so that whilst Libra is known as the sign of peace, balance and harmony these are not static states but rather ideals which shift and change as we grow and as the world around us shifts and changes.
Libra is the sign of cardinal air, bringing a proactive energy to her ideals, making this a good time for activism and working for social justice. Justice is an abstract ideal in the sign of Libra but also a lived reality, bringing a kind of karmic energy into play. Libra asks us to act with integrity, to be honest with ourselves as well as with others about the consequences of our actions, to do what is right even if it’s not the easiest option. Libra reminds us that the personal is political, asking to make our choices with integrity and an awareness of collective energies and the divine order.
Libra also brings a connection to the harvest energy of the Equinox, as we take stock of our achievements and review our choices. This is the sign where the self meets the other, showing what is being mirrored back to you by your circumstances or the people around you. There’s no need for judgement, of ourselves or of others, but we can accept what is and use it as fuel for our growth. Autumn Equinox is a time to celebrate and honour our emotional, spiritual and psychic harvests as well as the physical.
The sign of Libra is linked to ancient goddesses of justice like the Egyptian Maat, the spirit of natural order who weighed the hearts of all those who died and decided whether they would move on. The heart in this case is the symbol of morality and right action, linking Maat to the Libran association with love and relationships. She is called “Guardian of the truth and justice of the universe, Guardian of the rhythm and order of the cosmos”. In Greek mythology, Themis was the powerful goddess of Justice, birthing both the Horae, the daughters of seasonal time and also the Moirae, the three sisters of Fate. September 21st to October 20th, when the sun was in Libra was known as the reign of Mother Justice. The goddesses Ishtar and Inanna were also associated with justice and the divine order and indeed in ancient times, justice was the province of the Great Mother in her avenging or mediating aspect. Justice as an abstract concept of law and order is a much more recent invention and Libra has rulership over both.
The shadows are lengthening as the Equinox approaches and again they hold a clue for our inner work and our spiritual practice. Libra season is a great time to work with our shadow as we move into the dark season of the year, reflecting on who we are and the version of ourselves that others are reflecting back to us. We might be taking ownership of projections or acknowledging the parts of ourselves that we’ve hidden or denied, allowing us to build more authentic relationships as well as finding inner healing.
Libra season call us to learn to balance the outer world with our inner world, the light with the dark. Libra energy calls us to reconcile opposites and dualities – the seen and unseen, the known and unknown, the active and the receptive. As the cycle of the zodiac moves from an individual focus to look outwards for the first time, we may be considering the personal lessons we’ve learned and how we can take them out into the world.
Astrological magic for the Autumn Equinox