Leo (July 22-Aug. 23) — You have the gift of momentum, and behind that, the vectors of progress and solutions to persistent problems coming into alignment. The Leo New Moon takes place at the midpoint of your sign, which describes you tapping into a wider reality than the one you usually know. At this point of beginning, let’s invoke the blessing of our old friend Ganesha, the remover of obstacles. It’s time to get to the place you need to be, or better still, want to be. If you encounter complications, consider the extent to which they are the product of your mind. Examine carefully and with some skepticism any notion that you are damaged goods, or incapable of advancing the cause of your own healing. Notice whether your responses to various situations you may face are proportional. Right now society is on an insufferable, all-consuming head-trip where the only appropriate reaction is total, unmeasured over-reaction. You have no need to wage total war, or to participate in such an absurd notion, in any way. Saturn in your opposite (for you, all-important) sign Aquarius is calling on you to fully participate in society. That does not mean going along with everything you’re told to do. Saturn is inherently conservative, reserved, and sensitive to the timing of matters. Saturn in Aquarius calls for selective involvement, not total submission — to anyone, or anything. Saturn is also presenting you with a filter that will help you block unwanted influences and people who are inappropriate for you. One clue is they are not people who tell you what to do or what to think. You get to size up your own life, your own risks and your own solutions to problems you perceive. Enlightened people allow their peers to make their own choices. Saturn in Aquarius is holding you to high standards. For its part, so too is Jupiter in Aquarius. When it comes to the realms of knowledge and theory, make no assumptions.
Virgo (Aug. 23-Sep. 22) — Mars and Venus in your sign would rightly give you extra confidence, which I am sure you could use right now. Yet there seems to be a point of hesitation. On the obvious level, these two opposite-energy planets are presenting you with alternatives for how to handle yourself. Do you assert your will, or ease back and attract what you want? You might start with knowing what you want, which could be another point of confusion, though you won’t get so far if you’re not working on the basis of at least one decision you feel is relevant. As far as Mars is concerned, it’s never all that laid-back and in the end will always assert itself. In the mean time, you can use its power to help you track the many details of your situation. As for Venus, this is a different kind of intelligence, which works well in the space where thinking and feeling intersect. Venus is also concerned with resources, and will be more so when it enters Libra on the 15th. Until then, don’t wring your hands over financial matters: you will know a lot more by then. Several days later on the 18th, Mercury and Mars form a conjunction in your sign, and by then you will have the resolve to make your own decision about the one matter that is really on your mind. There is a seeming catch, however. You may feel guilty that what you want is not what someone else wants (anger is a sure sign this is the case). Whether someone is acting to make you feel that way is another question; what you do with your own feelings is the thing to focus on. This is in many ways the story of your life in these years: how to distinguish your will from that of relationship partners. You are not them and they are not you. It is time to set the terms of your own existence.
Libra (Sep. 22-Oct. 23) — It’s been nearly 40 years since the song “Modern Love is Automatic” was a hit, and that was before everyone was walking around with a computer in their pocket (or had one at home, or at work). This automation of affection does have what some feel are its benefits, one of which is the seeming lack of vulnerability required to participate. Humans get into these situations often, wanting the rewards without the effort or the risks. Then they can swing the other way, where it’s all work and no play. Now would be a good time to do an inventory of your fears. This might not be appealing, as you may seem to have so many, you lose count. Mars (and soon, Mercury) moving through Virgo, your house of insecurities and of unfinished business, may be provoking an obsession with all that’s wrong with you. Yet I suggest you reframe this as becoming aware of your concerns, rather than treating them as facts. This may be a stretch, since fear in any form can be convincing. It will help if you take every measure to come out of isolation. It’s true that the powers that be have been spraying social anxiety from the sky like so many chemtrails, though there is no benefit to this for you, or for anyone you might want to hang out with. At a certain point, you will need to choose between love and fear. How much time do you want to spend making that decision? Beware of the thought form, “to not worry is to be in danger.” That is a form of automated emotion. You will know you’re going in a productive direction when you are expressing curiosity. Try something daring, which would be anything you didn’t do yesterday. Try subjecting just one thought to careful scrutiny. What is true and what is not? That would be a good mantra for you.
Scorpio (Oct. 23-Nov. 22) — You hold yourself and the world to high standards. Yet what exactly is behind that? Has this not led to disappointment more than it has to fulfillment? When perfection is demanded, it’s rarely appreciated on those unlikely occasions when it arrives. The prevailing message from your astrology is that you’re a point of attraction and of gathering. Among the people you know, you alone may have the inclination to invite people into your life, in physical form, in person, for real. It’s true that we’re in times where many of us can say, “I’m the only person I know who _” (fill in the blank). However, you may discover that you’re not so alone when you spread the word that you’re making dinner on Sunday, please bring a friend, and hold the paranoia. More than anything, what we are being made to fear is one another. This is a good way to get divided and conquered. The one thing humans need the most is their mutual presence. We need to converse, to trade stuff, to help one another, and to ask for help. We need to be busy with our projects and other pursuits. And we always have been, even through the most horrid times humanity has faced. What you may be noticing, though, is that to have people in your life means to have different people than last year or the year before. You are not someone who likes change, particularly when it goes to the level of your personal tribe or family. Yet we are all being pressured into one corner or another, and much is out of our hands. Yet you are still you. You have the privilege of being guided by your faith, not by threats of death. Those don’t mean much to a Scorpio anyway.
Sagittarius (Nov. 22-Dec. 22) — Stick to what you don’t know rather than what you know. Beware of false clarity. You will be at your most intelligent when you are working with the uncertainty principle, which we might translate thus: for everything you know, there is an equally important thing that you do not know. Find that thing, and make space for what it might be, without predicting or rushing to an assessment. It takes real maturity to consciously stand in the face of the unknown, and that would also include facing the fear of the unknown. However, of the 12 signs of the zodiac, you are hereby nominated for this responsibility. You are up to it; you were made for it. As a Sagittarius, you embody the mysteries of the universe, which implies that much comes through your awareness that you simply don’t understand. The human tendency you need to defy is to pretend that you do. Now, the risk here is that any expectations you may have will also need to be suspended, and it also “makes people uncomfortable” when someone starts to ask obvious, sincere questions. It may make you uncomfortable, though you may decide you like it — a lot. There is something that is more powerful for you than discomfort, which is your quest for truth. As with any person, this can be subverted by fear or laziness or the desire to fit in. However, you are an anchor point for your whole community. People are looking to you for an example of whether they should be afraid, and for some judgment call of what you think is true. However, there are practical matters at hand, which exist far from the realm of theory. There is no room for delusion or for abstract questions that serve only as a distraction. Focus on the basics. Focus.
Capricorn (Dec. 22-Jan. 20) — You will feel more stable once you have your priorities in order. This can be done with a basic exercise that does not require 10 years of therapy. What is important to you? That’s the place to start. Along with that, it will help to strike a few things off your list that are no longer as meaningful as they were in the past, or which you’ve outgrown entirely. You may feel like your life is verging on the brink of going out of control, which sensation may have an eruption about once a week. The potentially stabilizing force comes from within you, in the form of understanding your own most basic values. These go deeper than preferences, opinions or desires. Values represent the ultimate, bottom-line truth of why you think you exist. This is wholly an internal matter, though one challenge you face is a tendency to conform to what you think others want, even more than most others. Yet this is being up-ended by your ruling planet Saturn demanding that you stand apart and not allow yourself to be overpowered, or allow yourself to submit voluntarily to anyone’s will. There may me some real conflict here, if you think your job is to conduct your life in a way that others expect of you. Yet for anyone truly on an evolutionary path (and Pluto in your sign is saying this is inevitable) you eventually come to a branching in the road. Perhaps someone confronts you and says “my way or the highway,” and you choose the latter: the higher road, more difficult, and yet true to your own conscience. That might be another word for values, yet to feel your own sense of right and wrong, you would need to transcend guilt, and be willing to embark on your own journey.
Aquarius (Jan. 20-Feb. 19) — Jupiter has re-entered your sign, where it will be until the last days of 20021. This is motivating you to pull together with others, which is certainly a theme of our moment. But who, exactly, and on what terms? Groucho Marx quipped that he would never belong to any group that would have him as a member. It’s funny, but what if he meant it? What was he getting at? This is a special time in your life, where you are being summoned to focus on birthing yourself into the next stage of your growth. You are feeling the pressure to be impeccable, and at the same time, the potential ease of knowing that you can be accepted whether you make your deep internal adjustments or not. I would propose that the people you want around you are the ones who support you in meeting your personal challenges. You want the ones who are ready and willing to stand on their own and who do not need others telling them what to do or think. These will be a rare few individuals, and part of your spiritual assignment is to be patient and persistent until you find them. There are two sides to Aquarius. One is the element associated with group participation. The other is a radical individuality and devotion to self-actualization. This second element is the one that makes participation with others meaningful and sincere; it is the essence of personal integrity. While it is not surprising that few people get there in the course of any one lifetime, it would not be surprising if you do. Yes, you will be carrying this tension for a while. And yet look at the work you are doing today as an investment in the future, when it will be worth 100 times what seems to be its current value.
Pisces (Feb. 19-March 20) — You may be feeling disoriented by a diversity of factors, such as how difficult it is for a sensitive person who loves nature, music and critters to watch the world descend into insanity. You might call that the environmental drama: the thing going on that few people can see, which you may be noticing. Don’t let that distract you too much. A little is inevitable, but remember, the drama that the world is going through has taken many forms and has been going on for a long time. Given all the factors in your chart, your most helpful direction of movement will be inward. With many planets moving through your opposite sign Virgo, there will plenty to draw you out, be it attraction, conflict, or the usual bump and grind of life. Yet do what you can, anything you can, to return to a state of inner awareness. It will take some focus and perhaps many choices through the day. You might need to opt out of social events when they are appealing, though you know you need to keep to yourself. You can trust this process: your charts describe many ways how vital it is to your wellbeing, and also that it’s a transient opportunity that you can take advantage of right now. As you teach yourself to go inward, you will make discoveries, and you will gain a kind of confidence that can only come from keeping your own counsel. I would remind you this is a direction entirely opposite the way world is traveling, having little to do with the controversy du jour. The content of any discussion is irrelevant. People are under the thrall of electricity, that is, digital technology, which draws humans out of their inner sanctuary (till any trace of it vanishes) and into tribes where little to no individuality is tolerated. While that will never work for you, something else definitely will — and it’s for you to discover what.
Aries (March 20-April 19) — If you’re feeling called to obsess over the details of work-related projects, or your life generally, that’s probably a good idea. There is a difference between irrelevant minor points, and the small parts that make up the whole. Take your driven quality to the point where you stay on good terms with the people who are helping you. There is at least one person who is wholly dedicated to the tasks at hand, and to you. Even though this person may not seem like they are all that driven or enthusiastic, you may notice that they are getting helpful things done, and helping keep you organized. You don’t need cheerleaders around you; you need competence. You don’t need a hot head, or to bang it against anything; you need to prioritize, and to be organized in your approach to the work ahead. And you must take care of yourself, which means staying as far from the burnout line as you can. One other point. Chiron in your sign is calling on you to do things differently than others do, and potentially to stand apart, and even to openly dissent. You may be sensing the pressure that is on people to go along with whatever the latest plan is, and you may be sick of hearing all the excuses to do so. We live in times when it’s terrifying to many people to actually assert their views, whether by their choices or in the words they say. This is merely a trap. It is not just that the world around you needs to hear where you’re coming from, and to be aware of the questions you’re asking. You need the practice asserting your emerging self-awareness, your conscience and your rapidly coalescing intelligence. You need to not be afraid of fools. There’s certainly no shortage of opportunities to practice these days.
Taurus (April 19-May 20) — Your squeamish side may be getting in the way of you having fun, even though you really want to. This could manifest a few ways, including some extreme preference for what exactly you want, being risk-averse, obsessed with hygiene, or trapped in your head. The kinds of pleasure you want are not so dangerous, and anyone who says they are may be jealous, paranoid or a petty tyrant. The risks are largely psychological, and if you will, moral. You might skip the whole debate over alleged right and wrong by determining that your choices are personal and don’t hurt anyone. If sex is involved, there are a diversity of approaches you can take, though it’s reasonable to avoid situations that would require you to lie, or to tell the truth about who you are and what you want. That might seem like a risk and like it would take courage — congratulations, if you get to that place. Being honest always seems like the disaster waiting to happen. However, if you are being smothered by the pressure to seem a certain way, and to act as if you are a certain person, consider that the only reason for this is to not threaten people who are insecure. Since when do they get to run your life? (This may go back a while.) There used to be a button going around: “When all else fails, lower your standards.” Your standards are not what you think they are; they are not so original; and ultimately they tend to work against you. Uranus in your birth sign, dancing with Saturn in Aquarius, are urging you to bust out of your known patterns and set the terms of any discussion you are in. Be grateful when others do the same.
Gemini (May 20-June 21) — There is a strange disconnect in the world between power and ethics. We cannot really blame the people who want authority without any conscience or accountability; they have always existed and they always will. This is all on the people who tolerate their conduct, whomever they may be, whomever we may be. Jupiter is dancing around your solar 10th house cusp all year (the dividing line between Pisces and Aquarius); it has recently retrograded into Aquarius, your solar 9th house, which covers the issue of ethics, as well as being true to your spiritual orientation, your deepest beliefs and any training you may have. Remember that the purpose of the knowledge you have gained is to act on it. (Keep filling your accounts; there is such a thing as the truth, no matter what intellectual anarchists may say.) Knowledge is not merely decorative, like the Constitution hanging inside a glass display case in traffic court. Take heed when you find yourself believing what everyone else believes, or claims to believe. That is when to stop and think. Laugh at celebrity endorsements. Politics and public service are unrelated. There is no integrity in submitting to peer pressure, persuasion or propaganda. Saturn is also in this house (a more longterm visitor to your fellow air sign Aquarius), demanding that you set a high bar when it comes to deciding whether something is valid or not, for you and for your immediate family. Hand back to people any argument that you’re supposed to “be normal.” You are not, and thankfully Chiron blazing through Aries, the most visible and public house in your chart, is putting you in the position where it will seem perfectly “normal” that you are making up your own mind no matter what anyone else may think or believe.
Cancer (June 21-July 22) — The present circumstances of your life remind me of the song “A Boy Named Sue” by Shel Silverstein (also author of Where the Sidewalk Ends). This is a tale about a man who must leave his family, and before he does, he names his son Sue, knowing he would have to “get tough or die.” Yes, you face what seems like many different species of adversity, and you may be discovering that you’re in an environment that bears little resemblance to who you are. However, the greater these differences, the more I suggest you stand in your truth, and your commitment to taking care of people. The world you are looking at in many ways has become a ridiculous place, where the obsession with greed, power and money have gone beyond any concept of sanity. Hypocrisy has become a drug, an end in itself, and an object of pleasure. As long as you maintain situational awareness, you can easily rise above all of this, and if you do, you will see how many options you have. It is essential that you have a moral framework, though unlike in the past, you will not have many others to use as examples. It is now the time in your life when you become the example, and in a sense, the arbiter of right and wrong. This is primarily in your own life, though your example counts for much; many are observing you, and you have not lost the respect even of those who may have turned a cold or ignorant shoulder to you the past year. This has laid what seems like a burden on you, though I suggest you put it down or return it from whence it came. The truth is not so complicated a matter, though it is not the usual stock of drug lords, money changers, or grand inquisitors.
beautifully illustrated by Deirdre Tanton
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