Horoscopes | Week of January 19-25, 2004

ARIES (March 21-April 19): Isn't it a marvel how unstuck you've gotten, how your muscles still retain the memories of their favorite movements and return to them effortlessly once inertia breaks? Isn't it a treat to see how just a few short weeks of restored activity can transform months of perceived nothingness? (Of course, in retrospect, I hope you recognize this 'nothingness' for the 'something' it actually was—regrouping time, perhaps forcibly imposed by external forces, but necessary for getting from there to here.) After all the confusion, you are now ready to rededicate yourself to a particular purpose within the fabric of friends, peers and the wider community. Midweek, decide which of your many energetic talents you will donate to those around you for the next however-many months as a token of gratitude for having made it through the last year and to this point here and now. The surest way to get restuck is to forget to connect to this sense of community (like, perhaps, you've done before?).


TAURUS (April 20-May 20): You really need to be honest with yourself about who you are, as seen from the eyes of the imagined jury of your peers, even if you barely have the words to tell yourself the truth. Hopefully, last week's suggestion to shake up the self-conceptions didn't fall on deaf ears, so that now you're ready to let the shaking stop and get the rebuilding underway. With Mercury and Saturn pitted against each other in the houses where you try to make sense of things from different perspectives (big picture? small detail?), it's likely you're still trying to mitigate the internal argumentation about what matters and what's silly, what's black and white and what's red all over. Once again, thank Venus for coming to your rescue—and she's politely goading you to ask friends and trusted confidantes from various walks of your life to mediate the philosophical stalemate. You might be surprised at how consistent their external takes on your situations are with one another, despite the differences in the personalities or lifestyles of their sources. When faced with these outside perspectives, you're going to have to work overtime to avoid seeing the truth. (And since you won't get paid extra for the extra work, don't fight the revelation.)


GEMINI (May 21-June 20): Realistic thoughts about your financial situation are good. Letting financial stress inadvertently pack guilt, self-pity or manipulativeness into your interpersonal communications is not. Coming to serious terms with your practical material limitations is good. Using them as an excuse to hold back from giving non-material support is not. You have to be at once sobered and inventive, Gemini, so that you can create more palpable physical wealth from the wealth of brainpower and sociability you possess. You'd might as well be Scrooge McDuck, hoggishly swimming through your cartoon pool of jewels and gold coins without inviting anyone else to take a dip, if you only acknowledge what you don't have. And no one likes a Scrooge, particularly a Gemini one with so much Venus-inspired charm currently floating through your outer-life career house. Choose your words carefully, so that each one generates interpersonal wealth rather than laments a perceived poverty.


CANCER (June 21-July 22): If you focus your energy and speak slowly, you're liable to succeed at articulating simple and direct statements about who you are and what behaviors you expect or are no longer willing to tolerate in yourself. Simple as this sounds, this ability has recently eluded you, as you've both felt a newfound maturity or wisdom and yet not had the right words to describe it. Maybe your companions have not been able to treat this new you in the appropriate fashion because, in standard Cancer fashion, you have kept the gradual maturation under wraps—they might not have even known there was something different about you. But oh, there is. And this week's New Moon is a great opportunity to see what can be generated—greater intensity? deeper honesty? hotter sex? bigger salary?—once a foundation of 'this is who I am now, and what I expect' is laid down. Take the extra effort to distill your words to no more than a few sentences. Rehearse it. Stay close to the agreed-upon message, as public-relations professionals do. And, really, that is all. If you can think it, refine it, and then say it, a host of developments should follow, generally in line with expectations.


LEO (July 23-August 22): Disclaimer. Love magic is manipulative. It's a matter of the desired mate's free will to decide if she or he wants to enter a relationship with you, and what her/his intentions for that relationship are. That said, the part of the spell that you can and should control, Leo, is what you are putting out there into the ethers. Wednesday's New Moon falls in your one-on-one relationship house and, along with the hot fire-sign trine between Mars and Pluto, sets the stage for a little amorous mojo. Of course, you can use the energy to splash sensuality or seriousness, intellect or interest toward whatever relationship aims you might have—a sparkling new affair, a fresh injection of passion into an old warhorse, a successful business partnership, a creatively collaborative firestorm. Whatever it is, don't pass up the opportunity to exude relational allure. And don't force anyone into anything. The more coercive your love magic ends up being, the more unexpected consequences that will pop up as a result. Oh, your spell will work—so be careful what you wish, and be sure it's what you really want, because you'll get it all and a bag of chips. All the warnings are here for a reason.


VIRGO (August 23-September 22): My advice for you this week, Virgo, is fairly straightforward. Don't get too distracted by other people's dramas. You have stuff you're already doing, and more stuff still to do. You know what this stuff is. You're doing well with it so far. And you also know when someone else's flirtatious ways or needy requests or naysaying envies are pulling you away from your focus. So often, I counsel Virgos to be more open to the unknown, to let the strict categories of right and wrong melt away into grey neutrality, to not be so fussy and particular. In this case, I encourage you to stay on the track you've set over the past few months—at least for the next couple weeks—and don't let the glitter and sequins you see out the corner of your eye pull your attention away from the less entertaining(-seeming) but much more ultimately rewarding prize you're heading toward.


LIBRA (September 23-October 22): In the short term (as in this week), a little restraint is in order. You might feel ready to make certain surprising statements about the scenery decorating your inner landscape, but I think you might want to rethink the strategy. Your public may not necessarily want to hear these revealing truths, at least not yet. Well, more precisely, they probably do want to hear them—because everyone loves some heartfelt confessional gossip—but their opinions of you could change, based on illogical leaps of reasoning you have no ability to control. No, instead, I'd bank your week on the gradual development of more self-expression over the course of the month. Let the private personal information out one drop at a time, in concordance with the Moon's movement from complete darkness at the New Moon this Wednesday to full light on Feb. 6. That way, you'll have a more tightly orchestrated message. You can shoot down misconceptions while they're still being born. You can save face, if need be. I'm not saying you should spend the next several days misleading others—just take your time in telling the whole story.


SCORPIO (October 23-November 21): Another powerhouse energy week for you, Scorpio. If there are tasks that require strong action, work on them now. Whatever responsibilities or good habits you devote yourself to are going to pay off in increased stability, income or sense of self-worth. Trust me, you don't want to pass up this chance to flex your muscle and prove your dutiful nature. I can't imagine you wearing yourself out on the purely physical level. But, of course, the physical is unavoidably linked to the emotional and the spiritual. And the real potential for exhaustion comes from treating your hyper-energized body as a machine rather than a vessel for a living breathing human being. Take that attention to duty seriously, and include yourself and your own sense of nourishment among the people and entities to whom you owe selfless devotion, contradictory as this previous phrase might sound. With this week's New Moon in your own private sanctuary, where you require all the unconditional mommying for yourself, recommit to taking good care at home. Otherwise, you'll find it more difficult to rouse the follow-through to bring your other duty-driven projects to a completion that satisfies you.


SAGITTARIUS (November 22-December 21): That's right, this is the Sagittarius we all know and love! You are feeling frisky, fierce and fired up (and on the off chance you're not, then you've fallen far out of touch with that fire within). It's one of those moments when your courage and self-faith should be driving you to express just how you feel, without fearing that you'll be rejected by the people you aim to attract (interpreting 'attract' however you will!). 'To hell with 'em if they don't like what they hear' is a cry you can rally around. Now, all of what I've said thus far is well and good. But are you actually prepared for this potential rejection? Because, if you have concrete material goals after which you're setting out, and if you are willing to say what you feel it takes to go after them… then it's quite possible that one or more individuals will not take kindly to everything you have to say. Is that a reason not to say it? Absolutely not. I just want to prepare you for the real possibility, that's all. Because of the boldness and the ferocity naturally bubbling up in you, you might let yourself be blinded to the emotional ramifications of others' reactions to your necessary words and deeds. And then, if some painful emotions should rise, you could try to unsay what you've said or undo what you've done. That's why I'm stepping in to warn you about it ahead of time, so you stick to your guns and follow the voice that starts in your heart and comes out your mouth. No backpedaling, even if you feel some hurt as a result.


CAPRICORN (December 22-January 19): Here's that chance, Cap, I hailed for you last week when you can finally get the communications right. Starting at Wednesday's New Moon, you have my permission (not like you need it) to say what you need to say and expect it come out clearly and eloquently. Over the past couple months, you've likely put in the due diligence to know how you stand in relation to this, that, and the other person, all the individuals in your life who hold different roles (and yet themselves not necessarily so sure which role they hold in your view). It's about time you told 'em. They need to know, now that you know. The good, the bad and the ugly. (Well, don't go tellin' anyone they're ugly—that might not help matters much!) Be practical in your approach. Handling these pressing relationship communications is but a first step in a month full of taking care of business. And once you start having the talks or writing the emails (I guess letters are a lost art?), you'll be pleasantly relieved to discover an extra dab of loveliness attaches to the words you choose. I'm thinking that, once you've finished the obligatory admissions, you can ride the satisfaction you feel into other totally unrelated areas, in order to feel a whole lot more stable and secure a month down the road.


AQUARIUS (January 20-February 18): In case you don't recall, let me remind you that I've mentioned a few times in recent weeks that it's time to get to work, to deal with life in the practical material realm for once, instead of philosophizing and theorizing in the clouds. I'm whipping your ass only because I have such faith in your vision and such desire to see it implemented—because, let's face, the world needs all the Aquarian help it can get right now. Luckily, this week provides that added oomph you need to invigorate the momentum and make a fresh start. The holidays are over. The fun and flirtatious party with Venus has come and gone. And Aquarius season begins this week, introduced with a magnificent and uncomplicated New Moon in your sign on Wednesday. As part of whatever you choose to do to mark the occasion (and I suggest initiatory rituals, writing down realistic to-do lists, praying, purifying, politely begging for help, et al), you might also want to read this week's article to learn about the big-picture Age of Aquarius situation, of which your personal project is one small but integral part. Hopefully it will inspire you to take on your share of the responsibility and also to enjoy the power of being a kooky visionary. Happy Aquarius season. Now, synchronize your watches… and start… now.


PISCES (February 19-March 20): Frankly, it's a pretty damn good week to be a Pisces. And if you're not seeing it, then you're staring too hard at that half-full glass and wondering why it's half-empty. As I reported last week, Venus is in your sign, which means that a whole segment of the population who might otherwise overlook your presence (shocking though it may be) are now showing they notice you through a combination of smiles, giggles and knowing nods. You, meanwhile, have the added assistance of Saturn—usually not someone greeted with open arms—to ensure that you both accept the attention graciously and not get carried away with unrealistic fantasies about who the attention-offerers truly are. Be flattered, yes. Be flirty, sure. Just don't go selling your house and moving in with her/him after the first date, and don't quit one job for another that sounds too good to be true (because, you know what?… ah, you already know what I'm going to say!). Truthfully, I'm not really worried that you will act so rashly. Indeed, I think you'll be on top of your game. But I just wanted to throw in the warning to cover all bases. The best approach to this pleasant transit is to stay as present as possible without projecting improbable futures onto any situation, and to remember that you are a vessel for all the forms of love coming at you to flow in and then flow back out. Don't hold on to anything, except maybe your seat.