A Wagon full of love greeted me on a walking/bike trail near my home a few days ago. I’ll admit I wasn’t in the best of moods — my energy has been on the low side as I recover from the new evil strain of flu that took me down in early January, and I may have had a few, ahem, stress-inducing thoughts on my mind, when I laid eyes on them … a wagon full of Bulldog puppies.

There was already a crowd forming and a chorus of “awww” and laughter (the live photo I took is hilarious) filled the air. After a moment of disbelief (am I really seeing this?) I stuck my face in the mix, cooing and joining the love chorus, as eager little puppy faces showered me with soft kisses and head bumps. I basked in their pure love.

(As a side-note, it did cross my mind that these apparently well-cared for puppies may have been bred and I am not a proponent of that, but I could not bring myself to ask as I was enjoying the moment so fully.)

The sole purpose of these cuddly beings is to give and receive love — they would have kissed my face all day — and I had to eventually pry myself away to continue on my walk and stay somewhat on schedule (it was a week day evening), but not before my mood had drastically lifted and lightened and my heart had softened and opened. I didn’t realize my heart was in a somewhat stand-offish state until the puppies alerted me to it. Here is an in your face love fest to get you ‘of your head’ and ‘into your heart,‘ said the universe.

And this, my friends, is the symbolism of the fierce and loving Lion. If you have a Leo person in your life, you are familiar with Leo’s characteristic exuberance and warmth. They got big heart energy.

The Full Moon makes its debut in playful Leo on Sunday, February 5th at 1:28 pm EST/10:28 am PST. 

When the full moon shines bright in the sign ruled by the Sun, it’s counterpart (the Sun) is in the opposite sign of Aquarius. Leo is full of emotion and drama while Aquarius has the ability to detach and views experiences through a wider lens. Oppositions are like see-saws and the aim is to find the balance between the two sides.

This Leo Full Moon brings Uranus to the forefront, the wild card planet that rules Aquarius and is known for stirring the pot. This means Uranus is also making a connection to the Sun. The configuration is called a T-Square. With Uranus in the mix, you may be ready to break free of situations that hold you back in some way … that block your light, creative expression, and ability to shine or show love. The Sun is your sense of identity and purpose, and the Moon represents your emotions and needs. Uranus making a Square aspect to this Full Moon can indicate situations that need to be shifted, changed, or, even, ended in order to step into your courageous and heart-centered Leo self. Leo is the leader of the zodiac, and the full moon may call you to get more in touch with your leadership qualities.

Play, love, and creativity are woven together and if one is blocked in your life the other threads get tangled up or knotted. Like the puppies in the wagon, we all come into the world with one purpose: to bond with our parent(s) or caretaker(s): to share love with them. I was walking with my 5-year old students from our outdoor classroom to the school house, last week, and a mother who was helping out that day with a special event, spotted her son and swooped in to steal a moment, wrapping him in a mama bear hug and giving him a giant smooch on the cheek before he was out her grasp again. He looked up, surprised to see her, and smiled widely. It made me smile, too. He is so loved were the words that floated to my mind.

When the full moon lands in Leo we are called to feel and express love, and if that expression is thwarted it can be painful.

Children (symbolized by Leo) are naturally playful, loving and open. As we grow older and experience challenging or painful life events, we can shut down little by little in the heart space (represented by the fourth chakra); the defense mechanism to detach from emotions may be the safest method at the time, but if it continues longterm we become unable to feel anything at all and, therefore, cut off from love … but there is always a way back and the full moon teaches us this.

Yoga, the simple union of breath and movement, is one of the best ways to reconnect to your body and, therefore, your emotions. I’m not talking about fancy or pretzel-like poses; I’m referring to moving in a way that supports your body, and feeling each breath as it connects to your body. You lift your arms and breathe in, for example, and lower your arms and breathe out. These simple yet profound movements accompanied by slow, full breaths help to ground you in your body and the present moment. This is one of the ways you begin to soften a tight heart space.

The Full Moon can show you what is lacking in your life (you may not have realized it was) and the path back to it. Leo energy puts you back into your heart (put your heart into it) where you can live more fully, create from a pure place (rather than a mind space full of chatter) and, when the time is right, share your gifts and fulfill your potential.