Aries (March 20-April 19) — You must use strategy to accomplish your goals. Effort and passion are necessary (and you have plenty) but they will not be enough. Motivation is drive, and strategy is guidance. That means thinking. By this, I mean manual mode, step-by-step, careful and reflective thought. We’re not accustomed to this and Aries is not exactly famous for it — but you are capable of using your mind this way and you will profit from doing so. It will help if the strategy you use is an organic expression of who you are. You should not have to think against your own grain or use ideas that somehow violate your ethics. Rather, the best course of action depends on your own innate skills, traits and temperament, and most of all, your sense of right and wrong. You might want to tighten the mesh there, and do only what you know is absolutely correct for you, and does as little harm as possible to others. Your environment also favors long-range planning over meeting some immediate need. Therefore, an effective set of plans will take you a bit beyond your goal and into the next couple of phases of your idea. To do all of this well, it’s more important that you be real rather than exemplify love and light. Being authentic is not popular, and it’s not necessarily easy, but it will serve you well.
Taurus (April 19-May 20) — I’ve noticed a bias not just against anyone perceived as emotionally needy, but against those who express emotional needs. You may have to address that prejudice yourself some time in the next few weeks, as you actually get into closer contact with what your needs are. I would propose that in life, needs should be relatively few, and desires more abundant. ‘Needs’ really means your bottom line; one cannot have too many needs denied in a situation and still have it be tenable. So, I would suggest you consider what your bottom line is. What do you actually require? As a Taurus this is likely to be somewhere on the physical spectrum of food, rest, solitude, social contact, sex or some other biological element of life. If your physical needs are met, you’re usually pretty happy. Check those first, then move on to your emotional bottom line. Be real with yourself about what it is, and consider your environment and see if you are able to respond to the emotional bottom line of others. There is a meeting place; it’s just that you need to identify it, and do your best to get onto common ground with partners and actually make it happen. In any relationship, actual shared values will exist on the level of what is not negotiable for either of you. It’s worth the effort to get there.
Gemini (May 20-June 21) — Shared finances now come under the spotlight, and this means you will be doing some negotiating. You might consider everything to be negotiable; you might practice in antique shops in case you’re not used to haggling. The benefits or rewards are potentially significant, so you would be wise to slow down and really, truly understand your situation. Take a conservative approach, which means focus on numbers, resources, shared responsibility and how any arrangement is structured. You will need to apply some old-school thinking (adding up the figures definitely counts), though you’ll also need to account for what has developed, shifted and rearranged during the past seven years. Plenty has, particularly values and attitudes; and any business plan you develop with partners needs to account for those changes. You can afford to think ahead; indeed you really must, which will call for some ambition on your part. Yet your form of ambition really involves thinking of something beautiful that doesn’t yet exist. It might involve having faith that the seemingly impossible is no such thing. While you have a pragmatic, strictly business side, with so many Pisces planets dominating your charts your real aim must include how you will serve people or how artfully you can do things (preferably both). Money is not everything. Yet realistic ideas about finances will lead to better work and substantial profit.
Cancer (June 21-July 22) — The next year-and-a-half will be an unusual and potentially brilliant time for you professionally. Yet there is not a clear path set out before you. Your growth will not be like advancing through the ranks of the Department of the Interior, nor will it take as long or be as boring. Rather, you will have many interesting turns, and unexpected (but somehow should have been obvious) developments. I think you’ll advance through a series of personal initiations that coincide with advances in what some call a career but what I would call your vocation. The difference is spiritual. A career you do in order to rise up in the world. A vocation is something you do because you must, come what may. A vocation means you have been called or summoned, and you are responding. It’s something that you do every day, all the time, no matter what other activity you might be involved in. What would appear to be the real variable here is how you identify with what you do. Success on some level involves adjusting your public presentation to harmonize with your inner goal. This will require a stretch. You’ll also need to take some unorthodox approaches in order to focus the appropriate kind of attention on what you’re doing. You are visible; you must do what you can to be seen in the most favorable light.
Leo (July 22-Aug. 23) — Do your ears hear those who need your help? I suggest you monitor carefully how you respond to the struggles and plight of others. Most people base their response on what would be convenient for them. I suggest you base yours on what you perceive as authentic necessity. This will remind you about your quest for purpose. It’s easy to be self-serving, and just about every influence of our society rewards us for being so. It’s less intuitive, less obvious, to offer oneself in service. Yet that is where you will find your true strength. You connect to your purpose and your sense of belonging by consciously participating in constructive ways. You might try setting aside the question, ‘what’s in it for me?’ or at least noticing how long before you ask yourself that question. It’s been a long time since Ayn Rand tried to brainwash us into the notion that there’s no such thing as altruism, that in the end, everything is about self-interest. Yet she has had way too much influence on our society. The question of whether altruism exists is, in the end, a deeply personal one. In any event, your current aspects describe your relationship to selfless service — or perhaps we could restate that as useful service where self-interest is just one factor among others, and not the most important of them.
Virgo (Aug. 23-Sep. 22) — It’s not always easy to ensure that people see you as who you are, not who they think you are. Yet it’s just as challenging to see yourself as who you are and not who people want you to be. Part of what you’re doing now is learning the nature of that boundary. That will involve asking questions about the choices you make and the positions you take. You’re slowly being prodded and nudged out of automatic mode. You know you’re getting there when you start hearing the things you say, and evaluating your choices against what you know your deeper values are. Yet there’s a really interesting quality to your environment, which is likely to be a collection of truly unusual people, people with whom you don’t have much in common. The question is, how do you treat someone who comes off as an original, odd or out-of-place character? What’s your expectation that others should blend in with the scenery? There is a mirror effect going on; your perception of your environment will tell you a lot about how you perceive yourself. The main question is, how concerned are you about fitting in? What are you willing to do in order to seem like you fit in, and why does that matter? There may be excellent answers to those queries, if you ask them well.
Libra (Sep. 22-Oct. 23) — Where do your relationships stand today, as contrasted with Jan. 1? I would recommend a thorough review. There may be many events that seem like water under the bridge. That’s how life is organized these days; everything is presumed to be ephemeral. That may be true, but what happened recently is still vital to you, and what I suggest you look for is both the story arc of the past 12 months, and also a timeline of key events: mainly connections made, transitions and separations. Remember who from your past seemed to resurface, and what happened when they did. This may have also related to past values, attitudes and viewpoints that reminded you of their existence. To put the question in the most direct way, I would ask what you feel like you resolved this year. What are you now confident that you have settled emotionally, or put to rest? What new values and attitudes have you cultivated that will lead you in new directions? The past still remains a somewhat complex subject for you, and what you developed in the past 12 months may be more appropriately described as strategies and approaches to dealing with your own personal history. One of those may be your process in the present: it would help to take a resolve-as-you-go approach to life, and not leave things to resurface from the ever-lengthening past.
Scorpio (Oct. 23-Nov. 22) — When in doubt, consider the concept of role reversal. Imagine yourself doing what someone else does, or actually try it out; imagine someone doing what you do, and asking them to consider it. Humans tend to be blind to the viewpoints of others, and it doesn’t help that we don’t generally express our own perspective to others willingly, or well. Yet that is exactly what you need, so that you can get along with people and, better than that, do something creative. One set of roles to consider involves gender. These tend to be the most prepackaged and inflexible positions we play, even here in the world of metrosexual, transgender and heteroflexible. If you’ve already been experimenting with this, what have you learned? How has your worldview changed? Can you see ways to widen your inquiry into other areas of your life? Try this as many ways as you can think of. At the least, consider how others respond to you from their viewpoint, and see what you observe. What you may find is that this opens doors of communication and of empathy. Yet it will also open up possibilities that were previously concealed from view; access to ideas that were lurking below the surface; and your willingness to take action, whereas before you were content to wait for something to happen.
Sagittarius (Nov. 22-Dec. 22) — Saturn in your sign will develop as an interesting walk along the ledge between confidence and insecurity. It’s not till you start to experience that directly that you really make valid observations and decisions. Otherwise it’s just theory. And more than anything it’s your theories that need to be put to the test against lived reality. This includes the value of past experience in any form, including prior learning from your parents and other authority figures. One might presume that the presence of Saturn is about maintaining stability, since that’s supposedly what Saturn is about. It’s more likely that Saturn in your sign is pointing to your need and even a kind of drive for new experiences and approaches to life. Saturn’s drive for change, initially, is going to be an experiment in how you relate to your insecurities. If you feel like you’re on solid ground, you will be more inclined to take steps on that ground. If you feel like you’re floating, or walking on a bog, you’re less likely to take firm steps. Therefore, the thing to work on is confidence — which is another way of saying learning to address fear in a cogent, thoughtful way. Ultimately this is less a psychological question and more of a spiritual one, though approaching from both angles will be helpful. Remember that change is inevitable; making your own decisions is optional.
Capricorn (Dec. 22-Jan. 20) — Based on images from the unusual astrology influencing you this month, I referred to the Allan Watts book The Wisdom of Insecurity. You know that Pluto has been coursing through your sign for seven years, making it seem like there’s no such thing as solid ground. Now Saturn is in your 12th solar house, which evokes a deep inner mystery and potentially a sense of isolation. Saturn is square Neptune, reminding you how vital it is to be able to focus your mind into coherent thoughts, using language and ideas. Yet nothing is certain, and if you can make peace with that, you can have some of the significant benefits of living without the need for false security. In one of the great works of modern philosophy, Watts writes, “You cannot understand life and its mysteries as long as you try to grasp it. Indeed, you cannot grasp it, just as you cannot walk off with a river in a bucket. If you try to capture running water in a bucket, it is clear that you do not understand it and that you will always be disappointed, for in the bucket the water does not run. To ‘have’ running water you must let go of it and let it run.” Such is the story of your life for the next year: a potentially amazing adventure into the flow.
Aquarius (Jan. 20-Feb. 19) — You are trying to establish yourself in the world, and you seem to be making some significant progress, though it may not feel that way. You might want to pause measuring your failures and successes and instead devote your energy to understanding something about yourself. That something involves the relationship between who you are and what society is. Your mind is a microcosm of the world that you’re wanting to establish yourself in. That raises the value on self-knowledge at this time in your life. Self-knowledge means going deeper into your motives and your learning process, and into seeing the way that patterns from your personal history manifest for you. If you are seeking change, and seeking progress, then seek self-understanding. You may be tempted to put all your effort into understanding the world, but even if you succeeded in doing that, the information would be of little value without the one-and-only necessary context of your life — you. The more transparent you become to yourself, the more transparent the world will become. The more flexible you become, the more flexible the world will seem. The more alert you are, the easier it will be to spot other alert people and engage them collaboratively. Yet you will need to suspend judgment as much as you can, and observe yourself carefully nearly all the time.
Pisces (Feb. 19-March 20) — You may feel like you’re under some strange pressure, which is true enough. But how you describe that sensation and what you choose to allow it to motivate you to do are under your discretion and control. Your astrology describes the theme of synthesis. This word started off meaning ‘deductive reasoning’ though the current definition is about combining the parts of something into a whole. Presumably we are talking about your life, your work and what you’ve accomplished so far. I would take the meaning a step further, which is about the synthesizing of something new from previously existing elements. In other words, there are parts of this holistic entity you’re assembling that you will have to make yourself. This requires the use of chemistry and physics, in the metaphoric sense. Things that don’t seem to mix or combine on the first try may need a few more rounds of experimentation. You might need to account for the missing elements that will make your process work. The single most important thing you can be in possession of is an idea of what you’re working toward — a description and drawing of what it is and how it’s supposed to work. You might start that process with identifying the purpose that you need fulfilled, and let that purpose and vision guide and motivate you. Take up your role as the inventor of your own life.