ARIES are developing courage. Jump first, deal with the consequences in mid air, land on your feet, and keep moving. Aries is about action not vacillation. She is the initiator trailblazing through unfamiliar territory, as though she knows exactly where she’s going and what she’s doing. She doesn’t always, but unlike the rest of us, Aries doesn’t want to hear that it’s all very safe and there’s no risk involved. She’s at her best in clutch situations. After she’s jumped off the cliff and things start to go wrong, when the worst-case scenario unfolds before her, adrenaline surges, and her mind sharpens. Refexes kick into high gear. That’s when Aries comes to life.
Jumping off metaphorical cliffs describes most of Aries day-to-day experiences. Being very direct with people who don’t want to hear what she has to say, challenging someone to an athletic game of strength and endurance, investing in the high-risk start-up, marrying the most passionate guy she’s’ ever met after knowing him for a week. It’s all about risk and stormy passion and anger, and wanting to win.
Aries carries within herself deep insecurity, but exudes confidence. She likes to lead others in new directions. That is her purpose. She’s fired up and emboldened. Determination is her strength. Discipline needs to be developed.
TAURUS is developing inner calm. In the parade of signs, Taurus comes second, right after hard charging impetuous Aries. Tensions subside, the dust is settling, and the focus is drawn to the simple pleasures of life. Taurus is a master at finding the sacred within the simple. This sign is feminine, fixed, and earthy, security oriented, and somewhat inflexible. Her serene perspective is the result of an ability to internalize the timeless wisdom of the natural world. No need to rush. Immersed in the spring beauty of a mountain trail, the ocean, or a simple backyard garden, Taurus relaxes into the primal truth that never fails to soothe, ground, and guide her. INstinctively she knows she’s part of the natural world that was here long before she was and will remain long after she’s gone.
What I love most about Taurus is her complete acceptance of the human condition. Sit in her presence for a while and you’ll feel the strange absence of expectations. No need to put on airs. No need to be anything other than you. And if you’ve forgotten who that is, stay with Taurus for a while longer. She’ll remind you of what you’ve forgotten and it will feel like coming home.
For all her strengths, Taurus is the sign most likely to settle for a secure but restricted life. The famous astrologer Steven Forrest says the following about the Taurean shadow; “Security is not evil. That is not the point. But it can constitute a kind of fool’s gold to which Taurus is fatally attracted. Should the Bull (Taurus) succumb to securities lure, all the timeless serenity of the sign can be squandered. And in its place arises only a spirit-killing stability. Taurus can bore itself to death.”
The challenge is to focus on inner rather than outer security. Spending time with nature is the elixir that calms the Taurean soul and provides the springboard for an exciting and vital life.
GEMINI as kids are those most likely to be evaluated for ADD. Classroom rules don’t work especially well for those who crave mental stimulation and variety and move at a twice the speed of the rest of us. Gemini’s nervous system is naturally revved up. They catch on quickly and move to the next object of interest faster than the rest of us.
Gemini is a masculine mutable air sign meaning they aggressively pursue new information from all directions. They’re light on their feet (metaphorically and literally) changing direction rapidly with almost no adjustment time. Of all the signs, Gemini is most likely to possess crystal clear perceptive abilities. As journalists they see exactly what’s in front of them free of bias or expectation. They’re able to present to others reality in its purest form. Their personalities sparkle, they can talk about anything for a short time, and they’re brilliant storytellers. They excel at captivating audiences with novels or groundbreaking news. They also excel at making Thanksgiving dinner an interesting and highly entertaining affair.
A Gemini mind is incredibly adaptable. Arguing with them is generally a losing proposition as they have the ability to confuse the sharpest opponents by cleverly shifting the basic premise or foundation of the argument. Their tactics are very effective and they usually win. Valuable information coming to them in the form of a verbal challenge is easily deflected and dismissed. But there are arguments they shouldn’t win and therein lies the danger for a Gemini.
For Gemini keeping life from becoming a superficial game requires a disciplined mind and a clear set of standards for the treatment of others.
CANCER is a cardinal, feminine, water sign. Every water sign feels their way through life, but none feel as deeply as Cancer. The crab with its hard outer shell protecting the delicate body within symbolizes Cancer’s need to protect her feelings. It takes a long while for her to recover once her feelings are hurt.
Cancer is protective of her home and family. She can be deeply attached to the past, interested in genealogy, preserving family albums, and keeping family members close. Staying connected to her roots provides her with nourishment for her soul and a foundation for herself and her children. Within her home she is stable and secure.
Cancers are ruled by the Moon. Their moods tend to fluctuate with lunar cycles confusing others and especially themselves. But Cancer rides the waves of those moods instinctively knowing that her inner life depends on staying connected to how she feels.
She has a deep need for emotional intimacy with a partner but fears the vulnerability that entails. It’s a huge dilemma for a Cancer. Trust is always an issue but walking around forever inside her hard protective shell starves her soul. A committed relationship devoid of real intimacy is a bad compromise.
Cancer’s relationship with their mom and their children is an unusually strong bond. Cancer moms care for the emotional needs of their children. They feel what their children feel and can have a hard time letting go when it’s time for them to fly. But she provides what their children need most – even as it breaks her heart.
LEO is a fixed, masculine, fire sign given to feeling that life revolves around her – and usually it does. Leo is ruled by the Sun. The entire solar system revolves around the Sun. As above, so below.
Leo’s are endlessly entertaining. Their natural exuberance refreshes and on occasion, exasperates. Their problem is that there’s not enough time in the day to enthusiastically express all the creativity and talent that naturally flows through them. They love and need an audience to acquire a true sense of who they are. It’s wise advice for a Leo to move on if they find their audience unappreciative or impatient for the “act” to end. An unappreciated Leo is one of the life’s sadder displays.
Charles-Augustin Sainte-Beuve noted that “with every human, a poet – an artist is born, who dies young and is survived by an adult”. Leo’s know instinctively that they can never let themselves become adults – not in the grown-up, serious, colorless way we often think of adulthood. Leo’s employ a natural strategy for living that ensures a life of unimpeded creative flow. They trust the world despite its untrustworthiness.
They are naturally warm hearted and full of love for themselves, others, and life itself. They are passionate, dramatic, and proud. Pride is what most often trips them up causing them to forget that creativity and love, however those are received, must always be given freely, exuberantly, and with a sense of child-like joy.
VIRGO is a mutable, feminine, earth sign. It rules health and all things related to work. It’s the sign that makes us into purely who we are. Ultimately Virgo can be the very definition of perfect health.
It’s a humbling experience to take stock of who we are and to realize that it’s not even close to what we could or “should” be. We do it reluctantly, but Virgos do it naturally. It keeps them motivated, humble, and very committed to self-improvement. It makes them the sign most likely to achieve mastery in some specific field.
Mastery is the gateway to purity – a kind of purity that has nothing to do with ethics or morals. Virgo purity is best compared to pure water… being nothing but water – having no toxins or sediment to distort its essence. A master is someone who knows the freedom that comes from relaxing into confidence while performing a skill that was difficult to perfect. A master is someone who knows what it’s like to be nothing other than be what he is.
All health issues are the result of not being, in its purest form, what we truly are. Emotional conflict, fear, resentment, and lack of love comprise the toxins and sediment that make pure self-expression impossible. Virgo suggests removing the toxins through natural holistic earth-friendly means, a commitment to self-improvement and mastery within a field that excites them.
Virgo in her purest form is understatement, a vision of feminine commitment to service. Whether domestic servant or concert pianist, her approach to work is the same. Humble, innocent, oblivious to admiration or envy, she performs her work with unassuming intensity, attending carefully and meticulously to every detail. Virgo is a pure minimalist masterpiece – simplicity sheltering the sacred.
LIBRA is a cardinal, masculine, air sign dedicated to peace, love, and the arts. Libra exerts a soothing effect on the world. Visually there is something very beautiful about her. Her words are kind even when she is angry or attempting to get her way. She is highly sensitive to her environment both visually and emotionally. A piece of art wrongly placed, a cluttered corner, ugliness, harsh words, or conflict of any kind, can feel like an assault on her nervous system and soul. When it comes to balance and beauty she is highly sensitive and refined.
Libra’s sensitivity to harshness tempts her to avoid conflict and to accept peace at any price. She tends to compromise when she should be gracefully asserting herself, to shut down when she must speak out. Ironically one of Libra’s great strengths is resolving conflict through active participation. She is very talented in her ability to understand both sides of any issue. She can see the strengths and weaknesses of all arguments. She is able to suggest solutions and compromises that all can agree on. And she is able to deliver her suggestions with a style and grace that calms, soothes, and makes everyone feel that they’ve won.
In relationship, Libra requires a sense of equality with her partner. Subservience or domination can never provide Libra with the sense of cooperation and inner peace that she requires. Compromise works for her within limits. Within the realm of relationships, schedules, work division, and how she spends her free time, all can be negotiated. But the essential nature of who she is can never be compromised. If her partner challenges her core essence she has no choice but to “let the lines be drawn” and to fully participate in any battle that ensues. And she must win.
SCORPIO is a fixed, feminine, water sign defining a person who feels their way through life. For Scorpio feelings are particularly intense. This life is one of transformation. Life experiences will require them to let go of things they’ve become very attached to. Because Scorpio is a fixed sign, adaptation to changing circumstances is not easy. Letting go is agonizing.
Scorpio’s energy is laser-like and powerful. It penetrates through boundaries to expose secrets and hidden agendas. Scorpios are detective-like. They uncover evidence that reveals truth. They wander through sexual, psychological, and occult territory considered forbidden, and are inexplicably attracted to concealed danger. Scorpio likes to live life on the edge. She feels empowered by knowing things about others that they don’t know she knows.
In conversation, Scorpios are good at “couching” penetrating questions to others in a casual way, while, in exchange, revealing very little about themselves.
Scorpios require ever deepening levels of intimacy, but trust is an issue. There are very few Scorpios who have not been betrayed in painful ways. They are very courageous once committed to healing their life. If they feel they are suffering from some psychological blockage or limitation, they will leave no stone unturned and shrink from no painful truth in order to heal themselves. Their ability to rise like a phoenix from devastation and near death is unparalleled. Never bet against a Scorpio. What would kill most amounts, for her, to just one more challenge from which she emerges stronger and more formidable than ever.
SAGITTARIUS is a masculine, mutable, fire sign. He is passionate, action oriented and continually expanding in many directions. Wise, he speaks from experience and tends to overdo things. If a little is good, for a Sagittarian, a lot must be much better. Moderation is not his forte.
Sagittarian’s beliefs tend toward the philosophical and inclusive. He is tolerant, but needs lots of freedom. What he believes is continually evolving. He accumulates vast amounts of experience over a lifetime, essentially living many lifetimes in one lifetime. As he attempts to integrate what life has taught him, he’s faced with the challenge of continually updating his beliefs.
Sagittarius strives to make his life bigger through exploration of foreign territory. For him, foreign travel is both enjoyable and mind expanding. Higher education encourages him to explore new ideas. Philosophical discussions with people of a different race, religion, or nationality expands his mind and his world. He’s drawn to experiencing more of himself as “a stranger in a strange land” where nothing can be assummed. His life is an expression of what is most meaningful to him.
Like all fire signs, he approaches life with enthusiasm. He’s optimistic, feeling mostly that the future holds great promise. He’s fun to be with and often athletically gifted. Sagittarians rely on their sense of humor (and yours) to save them from the consequences of speaking bluntly and hurting your feelings. He prefers not to be restricted to protecting your feelings by sugar-coating what he has to say. The truth is simply too important to be watered down.
Feeling “locked in” can move a Sagittarian very quickly into panic mode. His life force is diminished when he’s unable to maintain his independence and the freedom to move into uncharted territory. Enjoy him, but don’t count on him – unless what your counting on is someone to make you laugh, give you hope, and encourage your independence. One way or another he’ll insist you stand on your own two feet.
CAPRICORN struggles as life throws one obstacle after another into his path. But everyday he remains committed to the belief that he was born to succeed in a big way, his character is strengthened. There are, no doubt, many days when his “inner light” is barely flickering.
But Capricorn builds solid character through his commitment to keep going despite relentless pressure. By not giving up he eventually makes success possible for himself and for the world.
Capricorn comes to be known for his integrity, achievements, and genuine sense of self-respect. Through his struggles, he comes to symbolize leadership, authority, work, self-discipline, self-sufficiency, and, most importantly, self-control. Capricorn is routinely challenged to stand alone and prove himself to himself. Once he passes that test, applause and external approval of any kind become meaningless in terms of his life decisions. Because he intends to succeed and because he knows that self-mastery is required, his behavior reflects his intentions, not his emotions. Fear, anger, jealousy, and self pity do not motivate him. Despite all pressures, he takes the next well-thought-out step on his path to achievement.
As a Capricorn’s personal power over himself grows, and knowledge expands, the possible paths he can choose to follow narrows. Ultimately he chooses nothing. He simply does what he must do. What Capricorn frequently “must” do is to take responsibility for the success or failure of an enterprise. The buck stops with him. Ultimately he must lead, as life has lead him to a place where following would betray everything he’s become.
AQUARIANS are a complicated mix of disciplined structure and irreverent rebellion. From the time they’re old enough to understand language, and maybe sooner, somewhere in their brilliant mind they’re asking “who died and made you the boss?”
Life is a serious affair for Aquarius. They feel the weight of a relentlessly oppressive world conspiring to have them conform to something that feels strange and incoherent. But eventually they rebel and find ways to express their ingenious, futuristic, humanitarian selves. Ultimately they’re destined to embrace an “outsider” status. And ultimately they must choose to concentrate on developing the trait that is most unique within them.
Aquarians take their place as revolutionaries, born to “explode” embedded ideas and institutions that have become oppressive or inhumane. They can appear fairly mainstream, socially adept, and friendly. Inside they’re anything but. Chronically prone to question the “official story” and the “official authorities” they come to understand that social acceptance is too high a price to pay for living a life that’s not their own. They are “originals” and have no choice but to make it up as they go along.
Ultimately they accept and use their outsider status to advance the cause of freedom and justice. But it can take some time.
Relationships are tricky for Aquarians. Well meaning partners and families can pressure the Aquarian to conform. It can be painful for families to see their Aquarian loved one choose the lonely road of an outsider or to express herslef in ways that invite rejection. But Aquarius has an invisible built-in immunity to rejection. “Belonging” in the traditional sense doesn’t usually register as meaningful. She’s simply not playing the same game everyone else is playing. Her definition of success doesn’t usually jibe with standard cultural definitions.
Inventive, determined, and aware of her responsibility to accelerate progress she aspires to be known for an original and significant contribution.
PISCES is a feminine, mutable, water sign. She is highly sensitive and shape shifting. Her boundaries are soft and permeable – only vaguely providing structure for life. The lack of solid boundaries allows for a free flow of mysterious subtle energy that holds within it inspiration, compassion, and unconditional love. Against the backdrop of such subtle refinement and lack of protection, the world for Pisces can seem very harsh. She can feel like a “raw nerve” moving through a cruel world. Astrologically, it explains why those born under heavy Pisces influence are so vulnerable to the numbing effects of drugs and alcohol.
But Saints and are also very common within the ranks of Pisces – those whose overwhelming compassion for the suffering and sick drives them to dedicate their lives in selfless service. Those who write the most sublimely beautiful poetry, paint canvases that reflect pure inspiration, or photograph the lonely in ways that make tears the only possible reaction, are Pisces gifts for all of us.
In simpler ways they feel your pain as though they were you- as though there existed no boundaries between the two of you. This can be a heavy burden for Pisces given the amount of suffering that exists in the world. Taking time to sequester themselves in their room, or alone in nature, is critical for their health. Without that alone time to release all the pain they’ve absorbed, Pisces can become depressed and cynical.
Their intuitive faculties are unparalleled, making them prone to picking up on underlying invisible motivation. Often they feel that things aren’t right when on the surface everything seems perfectly fine. As children this can be confusing. As adults it’s a sixth sense that allows them to feel the truth and the essence of any situation.