Chapel Perilous ~ Full Moon in Virgo-March 1st, 2018


On March 1st, 2018 there will be a Full Moon at 11 degrees in the mutable Earth sign of Virgo. This Full Moon offers a blessing for the refinement of your spiritual path, encouraging the growth of honesty, integrity and dedication to disciplined practices.

It is now the season of Pisces, the end of winter in the northern hemisphere and the final chapter in the Sun’s mythic journey through the zodiac. Dreams of impending springtime may flourish behind closed eyes, but the outward signs of brightness and warmth remain hidden from view.

All the leaves are brown (all the leaves are brown)

And the sky is grey (and the sky is grey)

In astrology, Pisces is the end of the year, the time to assess what has grown and what has become subject to decay. Against grey skies and leafless trees, this season guides you to look upon the internal landscape, seeking the golden warmth of spiritual renewal.

I’ve been for a walk (I’ve been for a walk)

On a winter’s day (on a winter’s day)

This Full Moon in Virgo represents the culmination of energies that began emerging at the Solar Eclipse in Aquarius two weeks ago and the Lunar Eclipse in Leo a month ago. Think back. It may not seem like a long time, but there has likely been a significant spiritual lesson developing in your life.

Eclipse energies tend to stir things up, dredging the bottom of the ocean for lost treasures of raw emotional power. In response, you may feel simultaneously ecstatic, elated, and totally devastated. At a time like this, the intensity of your feelings can easily outpace your ability to problem-solve.

This Full Moon in Virgo will oppose the Sun/Neptune conjunction in Pisces, acting as a luminescent point of perspective to reflect upon this mystifying journey. Your thoughts may be cast adrift upon the waters, where dark seas and skies blend into an abyss.

Drifting and disoriented, you may wish for salvation, longing for some elusive comfort that remains just out of reach.

I’d be safe and warm (I’d be safe and warm)

If I was in L.A. (if I was in L.A.)

California dreamin’ (California dreamin’)

On such a winter’s day

A dialogue between Virgo (divine order) and Pisces (abyss) plumbs into the depths of consciousness, where manifest reality and imagination find meaningful reflection in one another. The sharpness and clarity of the Moon in Virgo will be softened by Neptune’s influence, melting  practical impulses into…

(California dreamin’)

The intelligent gifts of the Moon in Virgo will inspire questions about the great mysteries, the dreadful unknown, which emerge in both fascinating and terrifying forms. These environs are filled with musical voices, some angelic and some as deadly as sirens.

This Full Moon in Virgo, touched by the transcendent visions of Neptune, is a powerful time to purge your psyche of influences that corrupt your natural virtues and strengths. Though it may be tempting to remain manipulated and deceived, this Full Moon in Virgo will inspire you to have faith in the guidance of your own moral compass.

Imagine the Virgo Moon’s gaze as a slow shutter camera: her patient focus illuminating the intelligent weave in the ceaseless emergence of Neptune’s swirling clouds.

In response to the Sun and Neptune in Pisces, the Moon in Virgo acts as a dreamweaver, finding a meaningful narrative in the shape-shifting images that arise.The desire to apply meaning and create order will also be supported by a harmonious trine between the Moon and Saturn in Capricorn.

Virgo and Capricorn work well together, ensuring that anything gleaned from your dreams and visions during this Full Moon will be ground into mortar, laying the foundation of your next great work.

Upon the waves of the Piscean ocean, the wisdom of Virgo will remind you that the purpose of this strange voyage is to recover lost fragments of your soul.

Upon this voyage, you may drift beyond the edge, into a liminal realm between earth and abyss. Here your maps will become useless and your most cherished beliefs will completely fail to explain.

Stopped into a church

I passed along the way

If you have become this lost on your life’s journey, know that you have been taken into the realm of Chapel Perilous.

In Arthurian legends, Chapel Perilous was the place that housed the Holy Grail. In numerous stories, the Grail lured many upon a quest to find and possess its power. But these seekers were never welcomed or offered sanctuary in Chapel Perilous.

Well, I got down on my knees (got down on my knees)

And I pretend to pray (I pretend to pray)

Instead they were tested by many horrors, deceptions, and trials. Lost in shadows, their own ignorance and weakness would prevent them from attaining what they sought. No matter how long they pretended to pray, the Grail eluded them.

If I didn’t tell her (if I didn’t tell her)

I could leave today (I could leave today)

In the modern world, the myth of Chapel Perilous has not lost its potency. On that note, the great  philosopher, Robert Anton Wilson, often used Chapel Perilous as an apt metaphor for the dark night of the soul, an experience that all spiritual seekers endure.

Simply put, to arrive at Chapel Perilous is to realize that everything you thought you knew is no longer enough to explain what you have experienced. Your systems of knowledge, beliefs, and language utterly fail.

Robert Anton Wilson describes it this way:

Chapel Perilous is a stage in the magickal quest in which your maps turn out to be totally inadequate for the territory, and you’re completely lost. And at that point you get an ally who helps you find your way back to something you can understand.”

Realizing that you have no idea what’s going on is perilous because of the desperation it invites. Stricken by fear and an overwhelming longing for certainty, it is easy to be seduced by things that are too good to be true: the easy answers…hacks…cheats…and weird tricks that only lead you further into confusion.

You know the preacher like the cold (preacher like the cold)

He knows I’m gonna stay (knows I’m gonna stay)

The failure to identify your own weakness for deception is how you become stuck in Chapel Perilous indefinitely.

Like any place of spiritual transformation, Chapel Perilous is a place where darkness can be transmuted into light. By humbly admitting that you know nothing for certain, you may begin to see what is possible.  

Describing the spiritual transformation made possible in Chapel Perilous, Robert Anton Wilson said:

Everything you fear is waiting with slavering jaws in Chapel Perilous, but if you are armed with the wand of intuition, the cup of sympathy, the sword of reason and the pentacle of valor, you will find there…the Medicine of Metals, the Elixir of Life, the Philosopher’s Stone, True Wisdom and Perfect Happiness.

Thus, to escape Chapel Perilous, you must act as a magician, intelligently assembling your natural gifts of intuition, feeling, reason, and courage to catalyze the necessary transformation.

At this Full Moon in Virgo, take the time to acknowledge and assemble all your natural gifts. Examine your fears of the future. Where are you sacrificing your natural gifts and strengths? And how are you avoiding the responsibility of healing yourself?

California dreamin’ (California dreamin’)

The oceans of Pisces may bring many painful emotions to the surface, but these waters churn with the courage to be open to healing. The great labor at the end of the zodiacal cycle is to allow the dark clouds to roll in, letting the rain to purify your heart of its weakness to deception. 

“If you go into [Chapel Perilous] without the sword of reason, you will lose your mind… if you take only the sword of reason without the cup of sympathy, you will lose your heart…if you approach without the wand of intuition, you can stand at the door for decades never realizing you have arrived…”

The myth of Chapel Perilous teaches that the real satisfaction you seek (True Wisdom and Perfect Happiness) is discovered through an harmonious use of all of your divine gifts. 

With this in mind, remember that dreaming about all the things you think you don’t have is a waste of your imagination. Just like in the song, endless regrets and pretend prayers don’t get you to California…and certainly not out of Chapel Perilous.

At this Full Moon in Virgo, choose to free yourself from imprisonment by taking courage, following the voice within where your mind and your heart unite.

Robert Anton Wilson

Much Love,



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