Horoscopes | Week of February 20-26, 2017

ARIES (March 21-April 19): During this eclipse-riddled week in which an emboldened Mars in your sign is at the center of the action, Aries, please be exceedingly awake to just how potent, impactful, and/or broader-in-scope the effects of some seemingly small, limited, and/or casual action you take could end up becoming—no matter your initial intent. Yes, that's how quickly and furiously one move can lead to another, and so on and so forth, under this present-moment astrology. On the upside, you probably couldn't ask for a better planetary climate to support your own self-powered, self-supportive quantum leaps… provided you're simultaneously aware that dramatic forward movement in one life-zone can't help but increase your potential for experiencing logical side-effects in another. Presuming, however, you've chosen such 'movement' in this particular life-zone because its continuing advancement is what's currently most important to you, you should already be anticipating this corresponding fallout. On the other hand, this is a rotten (and maybe even dangerous) time to stoke flared tempers, provoke those in power, or act without considering possible consequences. One move leads to another, very quickly and furiously.


TAURUS (April 20-May 20): This is happening, Taurus, as it will. Hands off the wheel, please. You're not the one driving this buggy, my dear… at least not for this length of the journey. Adopt the necessary safety precautions, naturally, which means no trying to grab the steering mechanism back from anyone else or running into the middle of the street to stop this seemingly-runaway vehicle. A certain series of unfoldings, far larger than you and your singular subjective self can comprehend, is already in motion. Should you take too pompous a posture toward these goings-on—as if you're the preordained savior who's supposed to step in and do what nobody else can or will—you will not only make it harder for everyone already involved to see their in-progress efforts through, but could also possibly unleash a stream of unfavorable opinion about you, on the grounds that you're more invested in being in charge than respecting the collaborative efforts already in progress. Does that mean there's nothing you can do? Not quite. I encourage you to offer specific data-driven observations and/or method-based advice, in an immaculately professional tone, to your partners in this endeavor… as any trusted advisor would. But don't freak out if these trusted partners go in a different direction anyway.


GEMINI (May 21-June 20): If you want to be seen as someone with a defined sense of character, Gemini, then there's absolutely no way you can be 'all things to all people'. I know this is somewhat strange (but, these days, not so terribly unfamiliar) advice to give you, who's admittedly better than most at being many various 'things' to a whole host of different people, yet the theme remains unavoidably timely. And since we've been repeatedly discussing these sentiments here, you shouldn't be surprised if and when certain friendships or social alliances show understandably fitting strain. Therefore, please don't let any such strained relations devolve into needlessly nasty conflict. No need to aggressively defend your values, once you've discovered someone is on such a different page that it's as if you're speaking a foreign language to them. No reason to fight for a relationship, if the other person sees you as an ideological opponent, overidealistic dreamer, or intellectual lightweight. And definitely no purpose in retaliating against their disregard or disdain with ugly personal potshots; that intensity of engagement merely perpetuates your engagement with someone you have far less in common with than you once assumed. Just move on.


CANCER (June 21-July 22): Those 'very important' people to whom we report for our sense of strategic purpose, specific marching orders, organizational identities, and/or institutional protections are worthy of our respect, Cancer, if and only if they're doing a competent and honorable job of it. And if they aren't? They've essentially broken their end of the implicit agreement that underscores your whole relationship: You'll follow their lead if they lead you responsibly and respectfully, which means not only with their best interests in mind ('… and screw the underlings! Let them eat cake!') but in a manner that also supports your continuing edification or rise. While I want to be unmistakably clear that to reject, challenge, or overthrow the rule of undeserving powers is not without its major risks or ramifications, you're also under no inherent obligation to bow at the feet of chiefs (and/or the administrative hierarchies they fall back on to insincerely disavow their personal command) once it's painfully obvious such an 'agreement' is broken and doesn't serve your evolutionary needs very well, if at all. Speaking truth to power—terrifying though it may be, and not without a danger of repercussions—reveals just whose 'power' is illegitimate, corrupt, and/or not for you to serve.


LEO (July 23-August 22): You will never be able to go back and re-live the life you'd let pass you by, Leo. As anyone who's prematurely lost a person close to them and/or suffered a near-death crisis themselves will quickly attest, this embodied trip through the earthly funhouse doesn't always last as long as we think it will… and, if we wish to dodge an inevitable collision with the monster known as 'regret', we'll want to take those chances and face those challenges and embrace those adventurous undertakings while we can. I tell you all this now mainly due to the quite-pronounced allure of some sharp directional turn, far-out quest, fantastic voyage, and/or life-altering course of immersive experience that's presently knocking on your door, asking if you'd like to come out and play. Would it be totally bonkers to follow that urge? Only if you're likely to leave vital practicalities or other critical aspects of your life hanging, unaddressed and needing your attention, by doing so. (Handle 'em right away, then?) Would you regret not taking this opportunity? Only you can answer that question… though you might get some insightful assistance with that by talking to your most worldly, deep-thinking peeps.


VIRGO (August 23-September 22): You're slated for a massive breakthrough, Virgo… but whether you experience this sensational rupture with an antiquated way-of-being as a cathartic transformation or a calamitous wreck will depend largely on whether you've been assiduously leaning into this necessary breakthrough or resisting it at every turn. As that big astrological clock in the sky keeps turning, you should be able to clearly see this is not a time for 'business as usual'; anything but that, in fact. On the off chance you've been holding everything in, shying away from that one fateful topic or disclosure upon which so much else would turn, you're only allowing a certain debilitating pressure to build up—and since pressure cannot increase indefinitely without creating a risk of hazard, please understand that some sort of explosion is inevitable. The constructive flip-side to such an 'explosion' could be seen as a jolt of revelation… a cutting-through-the-bullshit that impels you to drop protective pretenses and/or admit a less-than-pure motivation, inviting the other player(s) to meet your radical honesty in kind (because you both agree moving forward together is more important than either of you saving face) or to not do so (signaling their inability or unwillingness to meet you there). However things end up going, they won't be like they've been.


LIBRA (September 23-October 22): Whether you feel so or not, you're right now in a rather powerful position, Libra, in terms of any ongoing interpersonal disputes, dynamic-shifts, or relational redraws. You are having your voice heard and your interests acknowledged, even if the other person isn't showing any clear evidence that's the case. How far do you take this, then? What would a 'win' look like? And must that necessarily equal a 'lose' for the other party? Here's when I want to warn you against overcompensating for your prior passivity or disempowerment by trying to be too dictatorially 'in charge' of these proceedings, when obviously an earnest working-through of relationship tangles must take everybody's applicable feedback into account. (And just because you're really fucking good at phrasing self-serving motives in terms that sound even-handed, such linguistic magic doesn't ensure the playing-field is level.) Mainly, I want to encourage you to keep any fights fair and any interpersonal efforts jointly-minded… stopping short of any 'nuclear option' which might score you an immediate triumph but disaffect, degrade, or utterly decimate someone else in the process.


SCORPIO (October 23-November 21): Work like every inch of progress you make is actively revolutionizing the task-at-hand, your competence at getting it done, and/or your entire relationship to work itself, Scorpio. I'm not just being dramatic here (well, no more dramatic than usual): With a forward-aiming, no-sacred-cows, open-to-innovation mindset firmly in tow, you really will be working to liberate yourself from practices and procedures which have become obsolete, are producing diminishing returns, or just don't make sense. When you proceed with this awareness, you won't do anything because 'that's just how we've always done it' (or due to any other pass-the-buck excuses for an unexamined habit). Each move is crisp and conscious, each effort obvious in its relative effectiveness… and nothing taken for granted out of undue deference to conventional (ahem) 'wisdom'. Should you have to defend your fresh-eyes approach to those who don't understand why you're bucking their implicitly-endorsed status quo, don't fixate on what hasn't been working. Speak instead in positives, about the promising potentials in doing it differently.


SAGITTARIUS (November 22-December 21): There's an aspect of 'doing whatever the fuck you want' that is electrifyingly attractive to those who both value individuality as a virtue and just-so-happen to like whatever the fuck it is you've been doing, Sagittarius… and just as offputting (or even potentially alienating) to anyone seeking to constructively bridge the differences between their and your personalities, in order to attain some goal-in-common neither of you could on your own. Is this something that should matter to you? That depends primarily on the context of your behavior, whether it's merely a question of personal taste, creative expression, or recreational preference—or if it involves either the work you do for money and/or a responsibility you incontestably share with other teammates or collaborators. If you aggravate or estrange someone on your own time by insisting on using that time however you so choose (because you intend to squeeze the most satisfaction out of your time), that's merely an issue of stylistic contrast… and wholly their problem. If it affects your practical self-interests and/or any collective pursuits, however, you might want to reel in the 'whatever-the-fuck-I-want'-ness a bit.


CAPRICORN (December 22-January 19): Legitimately becoming your 'own person'—which I'd loosely define as not letting what you've inherited from your upbringing and/or ancestral line delimit a too narrow or personally ill-fitting set of 'appropriate' behaviors—doesn't merely mean flipping the bird to certain family-members or other intimate influences, declaring you intend to do things way differently, and calling it a day, Capricorn. As long as you are so hellbent on insistently dis-identifying with where you come from that your every effort to 'move forward' is full of references to what you say you're leaving behind, your story's continuing to play out within the same frame it always has, even if you're looking at it from its flip-side. A more profound departure toward your-'own-person'-hood would be to stop participating in that story (with its preestablished themes, recurring heroes and villains, and predictable battles between caricaturish notions of right and wrong) altogether… instead reframing your self-conceived understanding of your life-circumstances based upon what is and isn't instinctively important to you, not what you mistakenly believe 'should' be. While that doesn't mean you can't engage with those familiar and/or familial folks any longer, it will require not letting them dictate the terms of your 'own' life-story.


AQUARIUS (January 20-February 18): Perhaps, during this time when partisan messaging and pandering spin are being deployed with such shameless panache, it's more important for you to be unabashedly frank than unerringly polite, Aquarius. It's not like you're unfamiliar with dashing others' expectations, sticking out from the compliantly-behaved crowd, or putting voice to ideas that are uncommon or unpopular (because they're ahead of their time?). Why wouldn't you assert that incisive observation, controversial opinion, or shocking remark right smack into the exchange—if, of course, it's what you really believe and its articulation will feel purposeful to you? A compelling reason not to might involve your fears about what could happen if the person doesn't like what you have to say and responds in a volatile or upsetting fashion… because, let's be honest, so many folks are on edge these days and that makes it harder to predict how anyone might react when confronted with outside feedback or a perspective alien to their worldview. Your job is to discern from your fears any actual threat: If your physical safety and/or material survival aren't at risk, what do you really have to lose?


PISCES (February 19-March 20): As human souls, we are always at once indivisibly interconnected and irresolvably alone, Pisces. This is a profound truth which can be hard to keep inviolate in one's mind, seeing as its dual stipulations seem to be in direct contradiction with each other… though, of course, the magic of our existence (not unlike the quantum conundrum of 'particle, or wave?') allows for its integrated complexity based on where the subject-observer's attention rests. The archetypal Piscean spirit swings inordinately toward the 'interconnectedness' pole, largely because its acute receptivity and sensitivity make it nearly impossible to psychically ignore the energetic pushes-and-pulls which invisibly transpire between the distinct subject-parts (i.e., individuals) of our greater whole. Yet, its antithetical mirror-reflection also holds simultaneously true, as it's presently critical to remember: You are alone, at least insofar as nobody else should ever be counted on to ensure your basic survival needs are met (or, better still, you have more than enough to both survive and promote your ongoing comfort and joy). Rather than focus on the potentially discouraging (or utterly unromantic?) angles to this existential reality, just treat it as practical advice, and take care of yourself as if nobody else will, because…