Hello readers in Kolkata!
We’re traveling to the beat of different astral drums this week, and while the forward-motion-nothing-is-retrograde cadence of daily life continues to feel like a relief, adjusting to the new flow may still require effort, especially if things just aren’t going the way you would like them to. If you’re feeling frustrated with the pace, try to keep in mind that it is only four weeks since the retrograde wave of 2014 receded; and when you consider how short a month really is, it’s not at all surprising that some of us are still having a hard time finding our stride. But that’s not the only reason the rhythms of the regular routines are a little out of sync. As soon as the six-month planetary review period ended, two planets shifted Signs, as well as Elements: Jupiter entered Leo, a Fixed Fire Sign, just moments before Mars moved into Scorpio, a Fixed Water Sign. Previously, these two planets occupied Cardinal Signs: Jupiter was in Cancer, a Cardinal Water Sign, and Mars was (endlessly) transiting Libra, a Cardinal Air Sign. Cardinal Signs initiate. Fixed Signs resist.
From an astrological perspective, even those of us who view Mars’ move into Scorpio as a welcome relief to its eight-month concentration in Libra, the shift between a Cardinal “attitude” and a Fixed one requires an adjustment period. Cardinal Signs thrive on action, so although you may have felt stuck for the first half of this year, you might also have felt motivated to do something about it, if only to assuage an uncomfortable sense of futility. Fixed Signs are…well…fixed. They hold fast to their opinions and positions, and they don’t budge easily or move into hasty action—if anything, they resist, taking as much time as they think is needed. Currently, that Fixed reticence to act is exacerbated by a fractious interaction: As soon as Mars and Jupiter changed Signs and started new cycles, they simultaneously formed an immediate square to each other; squares produce friction, especially when each angle of the ninety-degree clash is entrenched in a specific point of view.
The inherent rigidity of this Mars/Jupiter square produces the potential for a peculiar psychic whiplash: We recognize the problem, but can’t find a solution because compromise is almost impossible. From a personal point of view, it will take tremendous effort to create solutions that benefit all the participating parties, and the challenge will be figuring out how to hold the long-term, best interests for everyone at the core of your argument. Of course, what we resist the most is often what needs to transform. And as each of us faces this challenge over the coming weeks, a challenge that culminates toward the end of August, when Mars moves into a conjunction with Saturn, we will need to monitor the need to be right at any cost.
From a collective perspective, we only need to watch the news to witness the violence and destruction entrenched positions can engender. And while it is extremely disturbing to truly take in just how cruel we are to our fellow humans and to our planet—cruelty masked in the name of righteousness—it is equally disturbing to contemplate what positive steps can be taken to help ease the constant bloodshed. Feeling ineffectual in the face of so many battlefields is its own struggle—it is an internal combat zone that challenges the heart and the soul. Unfortunately, there is no antidote to the violence that surrounds us until the people fighting with each other can come to a different consciousness.
Those of who want to help but can’t figure out how to make a difference in the world can practice psychic civil disobedience: We can refuse to engage in violence in our own lives. No road rage. No spankings. No vengeful behavior. No kicking the dog. No screaming at the barista. No exceptions. This form of nonviolent protest is simply the refusal to obey the societal norms that tell us we should put ourselves first, even when that harms another.
Of course, non-violent resistance won’t be easy because we can always rationalize and justify our reactive bad behavior. But that doesn’t mean it isn’t worth a try, especially when it comes to managing our internal universe—and the violence we do to ourselves that no one sees. No brooding angry thoughts that dwell on all the wrongs of others. No bludgeoning the heart with a scolding litany of all that is wrong with you. No secret wish that harm comes to another because someone else’s suffering will alleviate your own. No blaming another for your situation. No exceptions.
Negative thoughts only give birth to negative words and deeds. And in this time of violence, non-violence is the only solution. I know some of you are thinking that I’ve OD’d on my Pollyanna pills, but I haven’t. While we’ve yet to amass enough people to put an end to war—and we may never—we can certainly end our personal battles and teach ourselves to love, more, and our children to care about each other, more. We are, after all, the most powerful change agents on this planet, and each of us—every individual—has the power to make a difference. Use your power safely and wisely.
Sun Bursts: If you know your Ascendant and/or your Moon Sign, read that, too.
Aries March 21-April 19
Patience is not your strong suit, which is why it won’t be easy handling the increased intensity; you can feel the positive change that’s coming and you simply can’t wait—but you have to. So take a deep breath and keep breathing until you feel better equipped to handle the lag time between what you envision and its eventual manifestation.
Taurus April 20-May 20
You can characterize it as a clash between your needs and the needs of your significant others, personal and professional. But it might be wiser to step away from the “vehicle” and soothe the situation by the willingness to examine your motivation. I’m not suggesting you’re wrong; I’m simply advising you to tone it down so you can let go and allow your needs to be met.
Gemini May 21-June 21
Choose your words, wisely, and you won’t be as misunderstood. And while that sounds like simple advice, it may not be easy to follow, especially in the heat of the discussion when you feel challenged. The person and/or people you are dialoguing with may be under pressure to be “right” and that could lead you to make sweeping statements you might later regret.
Cancer June 22-July 22
Just give yourself permission to be cranky—after all, you were getting used to having Jupiter in your pocket. Just don’t start a war by making impossible demands on others. Be clear about your priorities, apologize in advance if you sound impatient, and then, just let the situation unfold.
Leo July 23-August 22
Try not to let squabbles over what needs to happen at home disrupt your joyous mood. Yes, there is tension, but there’s no need for it to escalate into an untenable situation with lines drawn in the imaginary sand. Use your innate generosity of spirit to soothe yourself and others. Remember, in the long run, kindness always works best.
Virgo August 23-September 22
Read Gemini, above, and add this: If you continue to brood about all the things that disappoint you, you’re likely to say things that you can’t take back. So rather than exacerbating tensions, do your best to negotiate peace, even if that means swallowing your pride and acknowledging the validity of another take on the situation.
Libra September 23-October 22
The trick is avoiding wretched excess as a way of coping with overwhelming responsibilities. You don’t have to live like a monk, but you do have to manage your resources—financial, physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual—without feeling resentful about all the situations in need of your attention and care.
Scorpio October 23-November 21
You’re likely to feel the intensity as a clash of wills: yours versus any authority figure who happens to be in the way. Try not to be too hasty in jumping to negative conclusions. Yes, your innately suspicious disposition could be correct in its analysis of the circumstances, but you could also be jumping the gun out of habit.
Sagittarius November 22-December 21
I’m not sure how you can avoid brooding over the uncertainties of life—there are far too many to dismiss them lightly. But I would offer the following advice: Life, by its nature, is uncertain. And mental health could be defined as learning to live comfortably with uncertainty, which could become a daily practice of living without the need to be in control.
Capricorn December 22-January 19
Take a moment to consider what participating in your community would look like, and then take as much time as you need to figure out if a more active role is really for you. If it is, have at it, and if not, don’t brood about it. This may simply be a phase where you require greater personal and private time.
Aquarius January 20-February 18
The focus continues to be on your career, but there are adjustments that need to be made with significant others, professional and/or personal. The best way through this phase is to gather your troops and discuss expectations—yours and theirs. That way you will have all the necessary information to make informed decisions about what’s next.
Pisces February 19-March 20
It is a crisis of faith, but that doesn’t mean you’re in a negative spiral. Use this time to examine how you integrate your deepest beliefs into action. This is how all of us learn to walk our talk—one step at a time, making sure that what we are doing matches what we know to be most true in the deepest reaches of the heart.
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