Spring Equinox-April Archetype: The Maiden. on the verge of selfhood
Lifecycle Archetype of Spring Equinox-April: The Maiden
Associated Lifecycle Stage: Pre-teen, before menarche.
Associated Moon Cycle Phase: Gibbous Moon, Waxing
Associated Season (Sun Cycle): Spring Equinox. Perfect balance.
Associated Womb Cycle Phase: Follicular Phase
Associated Phase in Cosmological Cycle: Galaxies and star clusters form.
The Maiden asks us the question: What does it feel like when we embrace our sense of self and purpose as we grow?
As we head into April in the Northern Hemisphere, the Earth is now warming and spring buds are peaking out of the ground. The land begins to warm, and there are subtle signs that life is returning. The light is expanding. The Earth is becoming more active and less sleepy. There is a feeling of excitement and anticipation for the coming Spring. The feminine lifecycle archetype that rules over this time period is the Maiden.
This pre-teen wonder is becoming more interested in her own self apart from her family. She is stretching beyond the comfort of home and seeking more outward reflection and validation, and even a sense of purpose and belonging in the world. This often means going on many wayward missions that, like Alice in Wonderland, take her down the rabbit hole.
In the Cosmological cycle, this archetype is synonymous with when star clusters and galaxies are forming in the first 1 to 2 billion years, as the Universe reaches adolescence. These galaxies begin to forge and spread apart as the Universe, space, itself expands like a growing organism.
April Moon: the Maiden
The Maiden is a complicated archetype that alternates between light and dark. In Spring, we are welcoming a time when light and dark are in balance. The Maiden expresses both aspects of herself equally, on one hand being reckless and a bit of "Jonah and the Whale" type heroine, and on the other hand complying and playing nice. She is rebellious and cooperative and is exploring her own edge: What can she get away with? How can she follow the rules yet still be her own person? How can she do the right thing even if it's hard and goes against peer pressure?
Each of us holds this aspect within us: the part that wants to make decisions without the wheels of fate, family, and peers telling us what to do, and the part that wants to be good and play nice or fit in. The Maiden is exploring the edge of both here. She builds her own sand castles and embarks on her own epic journeys, but she secretly stays close to home and longs for structure and boundaries amidst her rebelliousness. In the end, she wants to do the right thing her own way.
The Maiden rules over the waxing Gibbous Moon and, for womb keepers, is associated with the mid-follicular phase. During this phase, the womb is still preparing for the coming ovulation. We experience expansion in our bodies and system and feel energetic and even outgoing.
The Maiden Mythical Archetypal Journey:
I invite you to sit or lay down in a comfortable space. Check your space for cues of safety by looking around the room. Notice if there is anything you can do to make yourself more comfortable or feel safer. Find an object or image in your space that brings you comfort and connect with it.
Now, enter into The Stillness within your own being. It is important here to drop into a state of total and complete reverence, knowing you are about to embark on a journey into communion with the Maiden, Cosmic Feminine Archetype.
You walk along a beautiful sandy beach. Seagulls glide through the ocean breeze and cry through the sounds of lapping waves. As you walk, you see a young adolescent girl in a long white sundress sitting on the beach building a sand castle. She beckons you to sit and build and create with her.
You sit beside her and pat the sand castle down, building it layer by layer with the wet sand around you. The Maiden gives you an intact sand dollar as if it were a treasure worth millions. You take the sand dollar and ponder its meaning, feeling the richness of its symbolism in the eyes of the young Maiden. You both stand up and take turns smashing the sand castle, only to watch it wash away a moment later when the ocean waves swallow it back up.
The Maiden then gives you a small hand mirror. Curious, you look into the mirror, and rather than feeling happy, you feel a sudden onset of angst and throw the mirror out into the ocean. And as you do, an enormous whale jumps up from the waters and swallows the mirror, then disappears. You gaze curiously at the Maiden and she smiles as if knowing a secret. She whispers in your ear: "This is your journey to get wrong." Then she runs down the beach and disappears beyond the horizon.
Now wiggle your toes, legs, hips, and body up to your arms and hands. Move your head from side to side gently and return fully to your body. What was the felt sense of this experience like?
What did you experience in your body in the form of thought, image, sensation, emotion, and movement as you received the symbols of the journey?
You can journal about your experience or simply ponder it. If nothing comes to your mind, that is just fine too. The images and their revelations may come to you more slowly and over time and seasons, even years.