Horoscopes | Week of August 22-28, 2016

ARIES (March 21-April 19): Only make a fuss if you're conclusively convinced that a central life-circumstance is headed the wrong way, Aries, and a radical blow-the-cover-off intervention is essential to ensuring you 'do the right thing'. To be honest, I'd be surprised to hear this was sincerely your case… particularly at this late stage of an extended process during which you've had every fair shot to profess your guiding value-propositions. More likely, you've spent this time carving out a path apt to lead you where you've determined you'll find the most personal meaning, evolutionary potential, and/or moral satisfaction—and, presuming that's true, you should expect to see clear signs this path is now open. I ask, for further reiteration, then: Is this path leading you the wrong way? If so, do something about it immediately. Don't quibble over the superficial symptoms; address the fundamental problem directly. Otherwise, if you're pretty sure you're on the right road (not counting the normal doubts or anxieties, which are inevitable responses to going somewhere new), there's really only one thing left to do. (Based on your most recent horoscopes, you can probably figure it out, too.) Keep working out those practical details, day in, day out, one tasklist-item at a time.


TAURUS (April 20-May 20): Precisely because this is a prime moment for you to proudly express your creative vision, your aesthetic taste, and your own singular version of how to fill the world with more beauty and love, Taurus, it just doesn't serve you to lie down, roll over, or play dead in any power-struggle that could jeopardize your ability to feel genuine pride in what's now being birthed. Yet, from the other perspective, allowing such a power-struggle to utterly dominate your attention—particularly if the conflict's only over one or two specific factors, choices, or technicalities, while everything else is flowing pretty much as you'd like—will only siphon your creative energy away from attending to all the little details you do have full (or nearly-full) control over. Which standoffs are important enough to you to stubbornly insist on winning? And which will ultimately cause you more trouble than they're worth, opening up messy cans-of-worms it'll be impossible to completely clean up? Consider this a lesson in choosing battles wisely… not that you'd necessarily 'lose' the unwise ones, but because you'll cause undue damage to a collaborative dynamic essential to your continued progress. Please properly discern your few biggest non-negotiables from other more-modest compromises, exceptions, and adjustments you'll probably have to make.


GEMINI (May 21-June 20): Please don't try to talk yourself out of acknowledging the very specific features, preferences, and practices which you must to put into play, Gemini, in order to create an ideal self-nurturing atmosphere in your home-domain (and/or in relation to demanding family-members or other intimates with big personalities). While your current astrology is teeming with auspicious indications that you can handily 'tidy up' your domestic landscape and/or inner emotional scene by prudently forming a few new everyday self-care habits and/or rules for 'clean living' (whatever that means to you), it's also pretty clear about the simultaneous need for unfaltering relationship-oriented judgment-calls. At the moment, your most significant and/or time-consuming partnership(s) is at a critical junction, which requires a fairly cut-and-dry determination… a simple yes-or-no to questions which have already been laid out (or else are so self-evident that you can't miss them), the answers to which will sharply demarcate where things between you will be going next (or not going, as the case may be). Trust me, there's less 'grey' in this black-and-white showdown than you'd probably like to admit—especially if you're making the most of the right-now by emotionally 'tidying things up'.


CANCER (June 21-July 22): Please make a purposeful point of reveling in the ample company of others this week, Cancer. At every instance you could choose between keeping to yourself or including somebody else, the astrology strongly endorses the more social option. This would also apply in contexts where you might choose to publicly share a piece of information (rather than staying quiet), invite a friend along on an adventure (over opting for a solo outing), do your leisure reading or writing at a park or coffeehouse (instead of sitting in the same corner of your room), and/or invest more of yourself in your calls, texts, emails, and social-media updates (beyond merely giving curt perfunctory responses). Such a distinctly interactive orientation will automatically expose you to a wider field of serendipitous possibilities, since you'd be actively demonstrating open receptivity to the unforeseeable influence of others' ideas, opinions, offerings, and attentions. At this opportune social moment, you will gain more than you can concretely measure by wooing this serendipity, positioning yourself conspicuously in its line-of-fire, lingering longer in casual exchange, intently expressing curiosity. Following this advice will also help your oh-so-serious dedication to tireless work, constant on-tasking, and/or an unforgiving physical regimen. Yes, you have a lot of business to handle—but that's not all there is.


LEO (July 23-August 22): Rather than going all overkill with making your desires known, Leo—because I suspect you've already done a pretty decent job of very clearly expressing them (or at least hinting at them with sufficiently little subtlety)—I'd recommend devoting your week (yes, yet again) to fastidiously collecting on the practical gains you've earned from your ongoing efforts. If you focus too insistently on the more dramatic ins-and-outs-and-ups-and-downs in your romantic life (and/or other recreational sectors), you'll be missing out on a golden chance to call in the favors, benefits, and leverage you've worked this hard to merit. And this 'chance' won't compel you to cash in on it during its limited-time-only availability, by the way… but will let you pass it right by, with nary a noticeable peep, if you don't proactively tap into its 'golden'-ness. Be pragmatically sensible about it, then, and force yourself to temper the sheer intensity with which you're chasing that irresistible lure, just enough so you can whip some important matters into better shape than they've been in quite a while. As far as satisfying that desirous hunger is concerned, keep reminding yourself there's nothing more attractive than someone who handles their own business like a boss… and, in doing so, purchases the freedom to do as they wish without threatening their bottom-line.


VIRGO (August 23-September 22): It's your 'can-do' moment, Virgo. You can do it, if you believe. You can grow your life bigger than it's ever been (and without having to give up all the things you really like about it), but you can't pull this off without taking some leap-of-faith. The studied inspections, the thorough factual research, the careful examining of potential costs and benefits… none of it could possibly provide you enough concrete evidence to guarantee a surefire success (though that's not to say it won't produce important information to have at your ongoing disposal). You can only educate yourself up to a certain point of self-preparation. Beyond that, an unadulterated shot of courage is the only fuel that'll effectively carry you onward. And that courage will also serve as your defensive weapon against whatever inner voices (or the parental-figures who instilled 'em in you) would seek to shut down your every attempt at trying something different, by repeating how foolish you'd be to bound into the unknown, urging you not to risk what you've already achieved, and/or stirring your worst fears about what could happen (which would, of course, be your fault). If I were you, however, I'd be more scared of not growing. Before bowing to self-incurred restrictions that'd keep you frozen in place until your emotional yearnings are dulled into submission (a truly frightening prospect), you might consider battling the inner villain to its decisive defeat… and demonstrating, yes, you can do this.


LIBRA (September 23-October 22): Early next week, your ruling benefic-queen Venus will enter your sign for a three-week stay, Libra, a development I'm reading as the unofficial beginning of that 'party in your honor' I hyped up in our last edition. The following week, the other (and some say 'greater') benefic Jupiter will also arrive in Libra… a much more momentous transit, considering you were last graced by its growth-enabling presence back in 2005. Therefore, it wouldn't make any astrologically-logical sense to attempt much of anything noteworthy—other than continuing your backstage preparations—during these final expectant moments in the holding-tank, right before you're due to receive such auspicious planetary rays. I will, however, mention that all forms of magical seed-planting, spirit-minded supplication, sacred gratitude-offering, mystical power-stirring ritual, and other such private metaphysical deeds are currently very strongly supported by your jam-packed 12th-house… and at this so-ripe-it's-oozing-juice stage in your unfolding, it certainly couldn't hurt to give such maneuvers an earnest try. The main challenge you still face, meanwhile, involves treading that thin social line between sincerely participating in a conversation (because your genuine, non-superficial presence is expected) and unconstructively offering overly strong or contentious opinions (because why?).


SCORPIO (October 23-November 21): With all this vital 11th-house activity continuing to spotlight your relations with teams, communities, and other social-groups to which you belong, Scorpio, I'm going to pitch my latest interpretation from a slightly different angle. While I've recently urged you to lean on the advice, support, and camaraderie of your colleagues and comrades—rather than making a solitary go of your efforts and potentially repeating work already done by others (or maybe even implicitly insulting them by discounting their experience)—I'd like to suggest another way to advantageously deploy this benefic 11th-house astrology would be to offer a leg-up to pals or peers who'd clearly benefit from your generosity. Far be it for me to insinuate that doing favors, sharing connections, and/or giving practically-minded pep-talks would merely be a means to the future end of receiving similar blessings later, in some sort of basic equation of karmic repayment… and yet, it is pretty logical to assume your good deeds will come back to you, one way or another. Beyond that obvious fact, though, it also bespeaks of a certain high-level of confidence in yourself when you can help others without feeling like their success will somehow endanger yours. From this perspective, self-assuredly giving of yourself, in a sincerely collegial spirit, also gives you a 'competitive edge'.


SAGITTARIUS (November 22-December 21): Take a very good look around at what's happening in your life right now, Sagittarius. This is no accident, no fluke-of-fate, no circumstantial expression of good or bad luck. You have made this happen. If you're not completely responsible for it, you've certainly been a significant contributor… and if not directly, then as an indirect actor or enabler, still playing some very critical role. Mars's long-promised conjunction with Saturn in your sign is finally occurring this week, which suggests this current snapshot of your life-circumstances is the cumulative result of these past-many-months' efforts—and you've earned this level of satisfaction and success. Ground your awareness in this level you've attained, neither exaggerating its greatness with a cocky gloat nor downplaying your achievement with self-diminishing modesty. If you're happy with what you're seeing, please bank this earned esteem as a firm foundation, upon which you can contentedly continue along at this well-metered pace, knowing you've 'established' yourself. But if you're not so pleased with the apparent evidence? Swallow the reality-check medicine, not as an excuse to get down on yourself but as an instructive map of where you fell short. Look closely at the problem-area(s); this is where you went too fast, got too sloppy, reached too far beyond your present capabilities, and/or didn't do your due diligence.


CAPRICORN (December 22-January 19): The path ahead as you now conceive of it, Capricorn, has already been laid out and appears generally pretty free of major outside obstacles. Though one should always expect their fair share of unforeseen hiccups, you don't seem to be overlooking any major considerations which would negatively impact your way forward (presuming, that is, you took last week's advice to heart). The biggest potential obstruction at this point would be your own inability or refusal to leave the past behind. We could accurately describe this as a boundary problem, meaning that you won't be able to make bold, confident choices about the present situation you're in, as long as you won't draw a clear dividing line between (1) whatever prior goings-on left you with a bitter, resentful, or disappointing taste in your mouth and (2) your latest version of self who has lived-and-learned quite a lot since then and, as such, is highly unlikely to repeat a familiar mistake (provided you aren't merely reliving a stale script, minus the 'learning' part). While harboring outdated fears based upon what didn't go so well in previous experiences is totally understandable, allowing them to freeze you in your tracks would be a shameful failure in imagination. Why would the same thing happen the same way all over again? It wouldn't… not unless you continue doing the same things you've always done (all while expecting different results?).


AQUARIUS (January 20-February 18): You're presently well-positioned for working out the finer-points of intricate collaborative undertakings, complex financial arrangements, and/or touchy interpersonal (perhaps even sexual) dynamics, Aquarius. To conduct this work with the greatest potential for big win-win payoffs, however, I encourage you to concentrate more on the interactive process itself than on any particular outcome you've presupposed to be the best (for you, that is). Your single most vital concern should still be to attain as much clarity about still-unanswered questions and still-unresolved variables as possible, through copious amounts of diligent conversation, fair-minded negotiation, and sincere efforts at fostering mutual empathy for one another in areas where divergent ideas persist. (Please expect these exchanges to continue producing new, revised, and/or previously undisclosed information for weeks to come, courtesy of Mercury's impending retrograde… and prepare your perseverance accordingly.) Meanwhile, in your wider social circle, be very aware that tensions which have now flared up are reaching a decisive point-of-no-return. If you're too loose or blunt in offering negative feedback, you may blow that already-shaky bridge to smithereens—though, in certain instances, this could be exactly what's warranted. If you want to save a troubled alliance, engage the tension directly; your way-forward might be simpler than you think.


PISCES (February 19-March 20): Over these months, Pisces, you've been nudged into a fairly tight spot, from which you must ambitiously assert your achievement-potential (and, if need be, bravely defend yourself against those who'd undermine your continuing rise)… while still properly respecting the official methods, institutional structure, and/or chain-of-command sufficiently so as not to shoot yourself in the foot by pissing off the wrong people (but without meekly deferring to the status-quo when you spy an opportunity to vie for your chance at actualizing genuine improvements). Was my previous sentence complex enough for you? That's how many different considerations you must concurrently juggle, to make the most effective and enduring impression on those who could open (or slam shut) important doors. This would be an awful time to brashly pick a fight with any mentors, elders, or higher-ups—unless it's a fight you're willing to take all the way, knowing it could irreversibly halt your further advancement under their charge. On the other hand, if you give up on pursuing a certain ambition now, you'll signal to Saturn-in-your-10th that you're accepting the reality of this disappointment… and any future efforts along this same road could be hampered by this imprint (which could prove wise if you're really ready to change paths). Whatever your case, though, please talk out the options, opportunities, and obstacles with your trustiest peeps: All the favorable planetary mojo is still currently centered in your relationship house (the 7th).