(Not related to the poisonous hemlock which is a flowering plant of the wetlands, and is incidentally an invasive non-native here in the PNW). This is a tall conifer prefers lowish elevations and coastalish ranges. Hemlock likes the places in the forest which are coldest and dampest, seeming to thrive where its darkest. As with all plants, where it lives can indicate what it will help us with; Tsugas (like many conifers) are warming and are therefore indicated for wet/damp, cold conditions, like congestion, various pain (specifically suited to the ligaments) and the kidneys.
But that's not really why I wanted to talk about this tree. I wanted to talk about this tree because today Black Moon Lilith squared both the North and South Node, effectively throwing the doors to our past and future wide open, offering us a cosmic grand choice; do we choose regression into the comfortable past, or evolution into our next phase? The trouble is, both options are equally open to us. It is just as easy to slip into old patterns as it is to build new habits. This is a slippery slope, but its also an encouragement; we all know how easy it is to go back to our "old ways", so we should take heart, and take that next step into the new manifestation of ourselves.
But what is that new manifestation?
The South Node is in Pisces now, while the North Node is in Virgo; these are our collective clues for our collective evolutionary process. As a society, we are experiencing crisis, and we don't have to look far to find evidence of this. The catastrophic election of Donald Trump and the horrific human rights violations at Standing Rock are just two examples. Intoxicated by our consumerism, reality shows, daily stress, as well as intoxication by actual substances, we are blinded to the suffering of ourselves as well as others around us, just as an alcoholic cannot effectively care for themselves or their loved ones. These elements of delusion, intoxication, and addiction are Pisces shadow qualities, and it is these that we are being invited to leave behind.
Virgo as the North Node is our chance to "level up", to hone our self mastery and self awareness, to walk with eyes open and hearts humble, and to grow our love so that it nurtures not just other humans, but fish and birds, whales and trees, dirt and water as well.
Be sure to check out your own nodes by looking at your birth chart (try astro.com), because this also occurs on a very personal level as well, and so what this means for you in your personal life may be very different than what I've just described. For example, my natal North Node is in Pisces, and my South Node is in Virgo, which means this is flipped for me in my personal life. But how can this be, you ask? Picture this like an orchestra; we all need to play a song of wide love, justice, nurturing, and holding the self accountable. But each persona has their own individual piece to play. Mine is the Oboe, and it is a tune of private, deep, watery spiritual practice. My partner, North Node in Aries, is playing the Trumpet, and his song is one of standing firmly in his own needs and desires, speaking his truth, and being a little selfish and firey. We each need to play our individual parts for the grander song to work out. So look this stuff up! We need your best self!!
Back to today's sky; As I said, the doors to the past and future are both wide open. There is no lock, we don't need a key or a bobby pin, we don't even have to turn the knob. And who do we have to thank? Black Moon Lilith, that's who. The oft disparaged dark goddess saunters staunchly into our frame of view and tells us exactly how we can make this transformation possible; by using magic, intuition, and assertiveness.
And Hemlock. The spirit medicine of this tree is one which makes use of decay; often the young saplings are seen taking root on fallen nurse logs. These same saplings are able to thrive low light of the forest understory for years, growing slow, biding their time, and waiting for that instant a bright gape in the canopy is rendered. This is when they put all those slowly stored resources to use, and bolt up towards the light.
We are now living in dark times, and they threaten to grow darker yet. For many of us, the oppressed, the ignored, the manipulated, these dark times are not of our direct doing. The light is clouded bwyond our control. But this time is not in vain; in the darkness, we lie in wait, gathering, swarming. Like the unassuming Hemlock, we know how to nourish new life from ruin and destruction, and this is our best secret. We will make good nutritious use of the decay from the systems which W I L L fall. And when they fall, when that shock of light hits our eyes, we will be ready, and R I S E.
[photo of Lilith obtained from astro.com, though I'm pretty sure its public domain. Also, check out those chicken feet!! hello, Baba Yaga anyone?]