As usual I started with my concept, the sign Virgo. My personal interest in this sign has perked up lately. Without going into any details I'll just say I'm taking a closer look myself these past few months at all that would be involved in manifesting the higher expression of this sign.
Generally we astrologers say that Virgo is ruled by Mercury, which means it's a mental sign. Certainly there is agreement that Virgo people are nit-picky and analytical and tend toward criticalness, even as they love to be helpful. The keyword given is "service." The house associated with Virgo covers work of all kinds, relationships with co-workers, and then goes on to include health issues, especially when health or the lack of it can be approached by looking at the mind/body connection. This is a field of alternative health that has exploded in the last decade. All to the good and a great thing for Virgo energy to be associated with.
Barbara Hand Clow, who is admittedly a radical thinker and astrologer, says she thinks Chiron is the ruler of Virgo and says so in her book, Chiron, Rainbow Bridge between the Inner & Outer Planets, first published in 1987, 23 years ago. Hmm, well she might be right about Chiron but it's the first I've heard of her idea so I guess it hasn't caught on. I kind of like the idea though. But enough said. Still, this has helped perk up my interest in Virgo.
So as I'm thinking all things "Virgo" I go through my collage materials. I allow plenty of time for this process. Seems in this case I had little to suggest Virgo-ness but a few things did catch my attention and those I set aside. Now Virgos are shy and self-deprecating as a rule and Virgo rules the virgin aspect of the feminine anyway, so I ended up with a Muslim figure all in black to suggest this. There were three different women to choose from and I chose the one who looked the most mental. She looked like she was considering something in the lower right hand corner of the card. What? I didn't know yet. You could see her hand coming out of her sleeve but it was not saying much. Amazingly in the same National Geographic photo of her there was a bas-relief with a hand holding a flower (attached to the figure of a bearded man). I immediately cut that out and attached it to her, covering the "real" hand.
This became my starting point. I started to think she needed an owl as a companion. I don't know where this idea came from but I happen to have a whole plastic sleeve of owls to choose from, so this was easy. I was meanwhile trying lots of backgrounds, which is where I advise people to start. I thought something with lots of busy-ness might be good to symbolize the active, analytical Virgo mind, so I chose a colored map of central Paris to start with. At some point I remembered reading the name Minerva in my basic astrology bible, Astrology, a Cosmic Science, by Isabel Hickey (1970). Of course, now that I want to quote her, I'd have to spend time looking all through the book to find a reference. She uses the word when she wants to describe the highest aspect of expression of any particular sign or planet or it's aspect or placement in the chart.
So who is Minerva? Well, I googled that and found she is the Roman Goddess who could be described as the equivalent of Athena among the Greek Goddesses. The Romans even had her being born out of the head of Jupiter. One of her many great attributes is wisdom and Wikipedia said (I'm not making this up) she is associated with the owl because of this. Some of you may remember one of my early cards, The Wisdom of Nature, that depicts an owl sitting on a branch with the Rio Grande River in the background? Yep, I used the same owl.
Now we're cookin'. All I needed was the "thing" the woman, now Minerva, was looking at down in that lower right corner. The hand spoke loudly, "choose me," and fits with the theme of Virgo service. And then the beautiful background befitting a Goddess, and the parts are decided. And what does all this have to do with the Virgo New Moon? Well, it works for me that Minerva, Goddess of Wisdom, is the higher octave of Mercury energy, and a Goddess for Virgo if there ever was one (some might claim Sophia, but she's a different story).
If we're going to consider something positive to focus on about Virgo for the New Moon let's go for the part where Virgo likes to be of help, of service. For this she will need to be smart, informed, well-practiced, accurate, not thinking of her own interests. For her it is a joy to be useful. Let there be appreciation for this pure joy, and we have all felt it, of having just what someone needs or wants, whether it be information, a helping hand, or an object of desire or need. And like Minerva we have our personal Owl of Wisdom invisibly guiding us as we respond to the need of another. Sometime our gift will be "tough love."