Horoscopes | Week of April 18-24, 2005

ARIES (March 21-April 19): 'I don't wanna get along with everyone else!' your inner brat tantrums, kicking and pounding the wall in resistance to togetherness. The funny thing is, on an instinctive level, you actually are playing better with others than you have in recent months, in part because what you're working on naturally melds well with their efforts. So why, then, the juvenile rebelliousness churning uncomfortably inside, making you want to lash your limbs out at the first thing (that is, person) you can hit? I venture a one-word guess: Control. Control, that is, over maintaining independence and individuality… and a willingness to forge semi-irrelevant disagreements in order to impose difference. How reactionary, though, to imagine you'll lose your sense of self just because it doesn't chafe against others'.


TAURUS (April 20-May 20): As of last Friday, you have the blessings of your ruling goddess Venus on her annual jaunt through your sign, sprinkling invisible dewdrops of pleasantness over your being for these next three weeks. This week, Venus cooperatively conspires with rapscallion Uranus in your 11th to promote your most oddball expression of 'hey, look at me!' stand-out-from-the-crowd-ness with the good favor of those who witness it. It's an opportunity to risk it, and expect others to admire your bravery, rather than to play it safe and miss an easy chance to feel extra-alive by behaving liberated. What's also entailed, perhaps the more stressful part, is suspending attempts to control how any certain individual (real or imagined) might see you, in exchange for a faith in the bigger picture. Be silly and inhibition-free (or freer than usual, at least), and they will come. Who 'they' are, alas, remains to be seen.


GEMINI (May 21-June 20): The details are liable to destroy you, Gemini, if you can't take a step or two back and let them take their rightful place as dots in a broader landscape. Squint, and they blend together, evoking colors and textures and moods… but no figures or features lucid enough to make out with assured certainty. What would the clergyman tell you? How would the sociology and psychology professors explain the phenomenon? What cryptic guidance might the wise fool offer? Such perspectives are far more useful to you now than how the lawyer might frame her case or the lit-theory trickster rearrange his words to (attempt to) prove that meaning is meaningless. Instead of deploying details (and wishful thinking) to justify how you think it is, ask yourself, 'What would Jesus or Moses or Mohammed or Buddha or Gandhi or [insert godly figure here] do?' You might not need to follow their divine directives word for word, but at least it gets your nose out of the self-scribbled notes and out into the great big universe.


CANCER (June 21-July 22): It's a week for painting your emotions in broad, vivid strokes, Cancer. Don't waste your energy on subtlety or precision. If you feel moved to characterize an experience with some wildly melodramatic statement, even knowing you're being a bit silly, by all means, do it. It's a natural part of the cycles of nature to occasionally shed the shell and, until the next one has to time to harden in self-protectiveness, scurry about in expressed exposure. Get a little sun on those usually concealed parts. Stand up, and demand to be heard… who cares if it's nonsense? What you announce in bold declaratives will be met with equally interesting responses, stimulating both of you to continue the playful back-and-forth into tantalizing territory, delectably dangerous enough to comprise an engaging stage play or script for later reenactment and/or revision. For now, extemporaneous excitement moves the energy.


LEO (July 23-August 22): This whole week, building toward Sunday's lunar eclipse in Scorpio, is an awareness-building occasion for considering the connections between your unique history of how you were parented and your process of owning present-day rips in the fabrics of your relationships. I touched on this last week, but I didn't specifically beckon you, as I am now, to go into deep exploration of the comforts and hungers, the fantasies and disappointments suspended in your child-mind, frozen at the age when you needed love most—and did or didn't get it as you'd hoped. Through more conscious awareness of the pluses and minuses in your account of being mommied (and we all have plenty in both columns), you'll know better where you're coming from in your requirements of partners and friends. And considering the fact that these partners and friends undoubtedly had much different nurturance circumstances in their upbringings, it goes to show why misfirings between your expectations and theirs are likely to happen. That's where the compassion and understanding must come in.


VIRGO (August 23-September 22): Consider this week an astrological get-out-of-jail-free card, to let you out of the self-imposed cell that appears when the little rules you create for yourself collide with each other and leave you very few, if any, permissible options. Yes, the walls are closing in and, yes, they will smoosh you between their musts and shoulds if you don't tunnel yourself an out. Your shoveling tool is the acknowledgment of inconsistency as an unavoidable part of the human condition… and last time I checked, you too were human and subject to the untidy contradictions that come along with the ride. Start digging, Virgo, and release yourself from those too-tight terms, lest guilt keep cranking the gear and choke the life right out of you. Simplify the standards by letting the most important one reign alone: your best intentions. It's all right to color outside the lines, misfile last month's electric bill or leave the toilet seat up, as long as you mean well. Good intention is your savior, the one with the key to unlock the cage. Choose freedom.


LIBRA (September 23-October 22): Go on, call me merciless because I'm not leaving you alone with all this 'getting what you want' business I began with you three weeks ago. It's all part of the drill when good-luck Jupiter travels through your sign (Sep 04-Oct 05)—I just want you to get the absolute most out of it. As I discussed in this week's article, wanting implies a lack… so since you've already considered what you want—which, presumably, is what you lack—the next step is to assess what you already have, the riches of skills and qualities and resources which you can draw from. But I don't trust your self-assessment, since Librans have a talent for understatement. Instead, put yourself in the shoes of someone who knows you well (the bravest among you will actually ask the person), and imagine what he or she might tell you are your nine most valuable valuables (skills, qualities, resources, etc.). Then, assuming your most self-effacing self will speak up to challenge the veracity of someone else's 'flattering' opinions… let them argue. Let the loving vision of what you have duke it out with the insecure perspective that sees lack instead of wealth. There are some meaty bits here we want to unpack, so they stop blocking your way to true abundance.


SCORPIO (October 23-November 21): Let me offer a super-simple interpretation of what to do when a full-moon lunar eclipse falls in your sign, as this Sunday's does for you, Scorpio—it's time to take a good hard look at yourself and, for your own best sake, be honest. You don't have to tell anyone what you see, but it's of immense importance that you know as much about where you are right now as possible. Examine your physical and mental health, your professional standing, your family connections, your friendships, your romantic situation, your sense of fun, your relation to spirit… look in the mirror, and don't judge, just observe. It's time to do away with any illusions you're someone other than you are. You're accomplished in one area and fucked up in another, a wise master in certain subjects and a young soul in others. You cannot hope to take better care of yourself (and we all have room for improvement) until you know who you are. You can't foster the gifts of a child if you don't spend some time getting acquainted with her, any more than you can heal the sick without a proper diagnosis. Look square in your eyes. Don't look away. Look.


SAGITTARIUS (November 22-December 21): Following last week's fortuitously intensified magnetism, I think you can continue to careen along on the fumes for another week. In fact, Sagittarius, you'll do better to pursue the events of this week with an absence of forcefulness, instead cruising on the muted afterglow of having already opened Pandora's gift. The most helpful advice I can give is, Play with the options. It's almost guaranteed that there are two or more right answers to every question, and you'll find your fun in seeing how to pick more than one at the same time. That's how magic is made—by refusing to pledge total allegiance to a single pole, in opposition to another. We're all made of matter, we purport, but we're also made of light. Is that a particle or a wave in my pocket? It's both, and, boy, am I happy to see you! As you go to argue your point, stop mid-sentence and adopt its inverse. You might feel a bit like a Lewis Carroll character, but who doesn't want to live in Wonderland?


CAPRICORN (December 22-January 19): At the end of this week's article, I discuss how we might navigate the gap between what we want and the reality of our situation, such that we convert the sense of lack underscoring our desire into an acknowledgment of the universe's interconnectedness, where we are all a single unit and fulfilling desire is just a case of shuffling resources from one hand to the other. This translation from the language of scarcity to the language of abundance is especially key for you, Capricorn, with Chiron in your 2nd squaring off against this week's lunar eclipse. In order to heal your personal sense of immediate need (likely of the material kind, and almost always present), you must stop envisioning such a harsh divide between you and the resources you require for a sense of security. You are not an island. All humanity is a single body, and some other branch (i.e., one or another of us) has exactly what you need. Whichever (whoever) it is will be more than happy to move it from one hand to another, as long as the transfer is part of a more unified flow and benefits the whole. Maintain the we're-in-this-together mindset, and your (that is, our) wealth will grow accordingly.


AQUARIUS (January 20-February 18): It's no time to be humble, Aquarius… at least not about what you've achieved in your career or esteemed contribution to the public sphere. No matter that your vision far exceeds what's actually come to fruition so far—this will always be the case, for that's the happy curse of being a visionary. The sooner you accept credit for what's already been done on this planet by your very hands, the more quickly you can incorporate that sense of accomplishment into the fabric of your self-conceived identity and gain some personal power from it. With the combination of (1) Mars in your sign sextiling Pluto and (2) Chiron in your sign squaring the eclipse-opposed Sun and Moon, I trust you understand that fostering this personal power (no matter how self-serving it feels) is necessary for continuing on your quest to help others and generally make the world a better place. You must exude confidence and control over your energies, in order to inspire faith in your process from others. Your well-intentioned philosophies for stimulating universal love will only ring true when you display how much you love yourself, in earnest triumph but without arrogance. Pure love starts at home.


PISCES (February 19-March 20): I hinted at it last week, but I want to state my recommendation more explicitly now, Pisces. Stop trying to make something of yourself, to win the game, to get somewhere, on other people's terms. It's a totally counterproductive venture. You have your own methods to what might easily be deemed madness by them, if you didn't know better. You do know better, right? You do know that, while they could effectively convince you to go with their story by spinning words and imposing pressure, your understanding goes deeper than their capacity, residing in the very marrow of your bones? Where Pisceans most often go wrong is by bowing to the wills, overt or subterranean, of other individuals who pretend to have answers that don't exist. The universe intended your sensitivity to respond to its own mystical messages, carried on the wind and the water, in the rocks and the trees and the wisdom in your cells… and not to uppity or semi-uppity human beings who act like they're God. All the info is out there, if you believe in fostering direct connection between yourself and capital-T Truth, and politely ignoring the other self-appointed clergy/authorities. (Wow, without even knowing it, I ended up reiterating last week's horoscope… there must be something powerful at work here.)