Horoscopes | Week of August 15-21, 2005

ARIES (March 21-April 19): The likelihood of irritability remains high. Ask your real-life fairy princess or prince charming to keep watch over your temperamental tendencies, ready to whisper that secret phrase into your ear, the one that turns your mood on a dime and heads it back to happy acceptance. Because you're as prone both to accelerate to anger and to let it pass away just as quickly, do what you can to eliminate the middleman—that is, the brutal explosion—and move efficiently from 'just about to blow' to 'already letting it go'. Those special people in your life who know just how to defuse you should be invited to exercise their influence. Sometimes all you need is an outside stimulus, in the form of someone else's outlook, to divert the course of the flow from a seemingly inevitable crashing.


TAURUS (April 20-May 20): It's time to cede your crown as 'Mr./Ms. Most Inflexible Sign' because, as I see it, the title has worn out its welcome (and may or may not have always validly applied). But this is not an honor we'd expect you to give up gracefully, Taurus, because there's a lot to be said for 'what you see is what you get… and get and get and continue to get'—and no official term-limit stipulation to force you off the throne. In order to pass it on to someone else, you'll have to identify those whom you consider to be at least as stubborn-minded as you… and then yield to respectful recognition of their perspectives, faster and more sweetly than they do to yours. You must be amenable to losing the battle of wills by refusing to even pick up a weapon, in order to win the privilege of moving onto other pageants, like 'Mr./Ms. Self-Development is Fun'… or at least 'Mr./Ms. Congeniality'.


GEMINI (May 21-June 20): Take twenty long and deep breaths (no cheating by copping out at 12!), then ask again. For revisiting answers you didn't like the first or second time around, from co-workers or roommates or God, on topics ranging from 'where did I leave my credit card?' to 'which of us do you like better?' and 'why me?'… this is a good week to seek more information and prepare for changed minds. The best results come from speaking slowly, listening without simultaneously prepping your conversational comeback, and sustaining a standpoint of wishing goodwill no matter the outcome. Permitting your personality to come through, devoid of pushing any agenda other than inquiring on thoughts or opinions, will alleviate the potential for you to be read as manipulative. Stay calm and centered, polite and pleasant, and ask again. You never know what they'll say… and shouldn't try to guess.


CANCER (June 21-July 22): Love yourself first. And whenever the terms of an encounter coax you into making pledges or pleas that call the prioritized primacy of your self-care into question—and you'll recognize the symptoms of mystical ringing-in-your-ears and knotty doesn't-feel-quite-right stomach somersaults—then kindly excuse yourself and regroup until your protective boundaries are back in place. Some of your star-sign siblings are getting rather pushy and probing lately, and the only way for a sensitive Cancerian to weather their abrasive attitudes is to seek brief flashes of bliss in sanctuaries of your choosing. These places (whether real locations or metaphoric mind-states) exist to remind you of your purest Self, and to alleviate the pressures from others on you to be who they want or need you to be. If you can't regularly retreat from their insatiably grabby hands, you'll too easily fall under the spell of defining yourself solely as a nurturer of others… and be left wondering when someone will be coming to your support.


LEO (July 23-August 22): If these past two weeks have brought any interpersonal tussles or trials, I wouldn't bank your hopes on using this week to iron out the wrinkles. Those of you Mercury-watchers might be chomping at the bit to chase an instantaneous return to dependable communication, now that Mercury's switching back to direct motion, but don't be fooled by the writing in only one column of the astrological calendar. With this week's aspects, including a Full Moon in your partnership sign Aquarius, you should be more concerned with discovering additional informational details from the mouths of other trusted comrades than trying to work with what (you think) you already have. Where relationships remain strained, walk away for a little bit. Instead, circulate in different circles, and buzz about alternative topics of interests, to get some badly needed distance. In terms of seeking resolution, wait another couple weeks, so Mercury has a chance to speed back up to his favored pace and get past Mars's wrath.


VIRGO (August 23-September 22): It's a good week to be a Virgo, if you do as you should and surrender to present-moment-focused effort on getting the job done… and don't worry about much else. As creatively motivated as you to tackle the practical concerns on a minute-by-minute basis, that's how equally scrambled your mind for the extraneous details continues to be. If it's not right in front of you, let it go. If it simply cannot be let go, assign the duty to entertain these extra anxieties to someone else (maybe a trusted Taurus or a happy-to-help Libra?)… then put your hands back into action. In this reality bounded by the precepts of Newtonian physics, you can only be in one place doing one thing at one time. Do your best to play by these rules, and you'll be happy with the results of your toil and trouble. Otherwise, you'll become so racked with distraction that your final product will hold a similarly frenetic imprint.


LIBRA (September 23-October 22): Regard this week, Libra, as the beginning of a sanctified several weeks' of beneficent blessings and blissful beauty… then what I've just described is more likely to come to pass. As you might remember from last week's horoscope, Venus is now entering Libra, and creating the effect of your having a personal celestial stylist to ensure you look and feel you best in every instance. Plus, bountiful Jupiter heads into its final stretch through your sign, making a booster trine to Neptune and inviting you to share your blessings and beauty with friends and strangers alike. If you really want to kick off this next couple months' of Libran stimulation right, then you'll go out of your way to bring kindness and light to whomever crosses your path. Your generosity and love will return in multiplied transmuted form, but the highest joy comes from the giving itself.


SCORPIO (October 23-November 21): Despite the vibes you might pick up off of them, proceed with caution. Yes, you're definitely sensing a shift away from the complete chaos and/or confusion of the past few weeks, and toward a more clear and/or controllable path ahead. But this switch is still just surface-level, and not all snarls have yet been unwound into easy-and-free. Barking up any tree at all, whether it's the 'right' or 'wrong' one, is still too likely to spook the other animals in the neighborhood, no matter your intentions. Your best bet is to play nice. Even if you've got tons of crap on your mind, it's still preferable to stare blankly off into space and see if you can spy mythological figures in the clouds or visions of sugarplums dancing above the boss's head. Imagination is favored over devoting your will to seriousness. I promise this keeping you at bay won't last forever… but let's not forget Mars is in your 7th house until February, simmering with potential one-on-one conflicts more latently nasty than you'd expect from such quiet foes. Get through another couple weeks, and the urge to snarl will begin to decrease… for a while.


SAGITTARIUS (November 22-December 21): I liked what I wrote for you last week so much, I honestly wish I could reprint it and play it off as new. That wouldn't work, though… not only due to the changing astrological scene, but because you Sagittarians are too hungry for additional revelatory disclosures to continue to push you further toward 'The Truth', and leftovers don't cut it. Still I stand by my call for your cordial unassuming upfrontness, and continue to discourage efforts to be 'cool' rather than forthright. Now, though, Venus moves into your 11th and joins your ruler Jupiter in making two supportive aspects from there, which tells me your greater participation in the social fracas is requested. Apply your directness with a group-minded focus, to helping friends or alliances or organizations make their dreams come true, instead of trying to get anything for yourself. They'll be open to your suggestions for generating excitement and buzz—when they can see it's for the higher best, not just so you can brag you came up with the best idea. And though Mercury is now direct, he's still not operating at his optimal effectiveness, so keep an eye out for the potential to be perceived as preachy.


CAPRICORN (December 22-January 19): You're in a brighter public light this week, one with the prospect of benefiting your reputation in a measurable way… as long as you strip your communications clean of any traces of (1) proving your point, (2) vengefully 'showing them', (3) smugly feigning respect, or (4) devilishly undermining authority. And I know you can do it too, Capricorn. Don't succumb to the lower temptations; take the higher road instead. The superiority truly worth lording is of the moral variety, which only comes from having done what's 'right' and being able to look yourself in the mirror later. If you can cruise through the week without letting the more spiteful motivations rear their ugly heads, you'll win two victories—one for self-control, and another in the esteem you gain in the stakeholders' eyes. Neither is more or less important than the other, and neither is worth squandering in a fleeting moment of weakness.


AQUARIUS (January 20-February 18): Read almost any current Aquarius horoscopes anywhere, and you'll probably catch more-than-passing mention of relationships and your pressing need to attend to them. But try as we astrologers might to find exactly the right words to describe your specific relationship quandaries and quagmires (and to continue finding the right words, week in and week out, during Saturn's 2-year transit through your 7th house), we may at times get stumped. There are as many different variations on the one-on-one relationships engaged in by Aquarians as there are color swatches at the paint store, and there's nothing you love more than keeping us guessing. Hopefully, though, you're not keeping your spouse or life-partner or business associate or friend-with-benefits guessing. If no one else, at least your special person (or two or three) should know what areas of personal intimacy and sharing you're working on… so, if no one else, at least this person (or two or three) can help you stop the frantic futility of constantly changing your spots or consciously contradicting what you said last week, just to prove you can. This person (or two or three) at least deserves this consideration—and you deserve their helpful support.


PISCES (February 19-March 20): Embrace the temptation to get a little closer. Don't be shy. The kind of connections you desire, vast and fluid, enchantingly interpenetrating, are yours for the taking, Pisces. But you don't have to swallow the whole ocean all at once. (After all, isn't that usually what's happened when problems arose?) Let the full potential hover out there, unfulfilled, hinted at and then gradually exposed over time. It'll give you a better understanding of what you're getting into—before you discover yourself neck-deep in it, wondering where you left your snorkel. Disclosure of your intent to go further over a period of time is all you need make manifest, in order to cement the deal to continue exploring whether there's a deal. If you're correctly interpreting the aim of my words, you'll feel justifiably inspired by my giving the astrological go-ahead to involve yourself. If, however, you sense I'm dampening the mood with the suggestion to proceed little by little, then you're not listening… and are presumably hell-bent on drowning in imagined bliss. Trust me, though—at some point, you'll find yourself coughing and gasping for breath.