Empathy, Honesty and Power Struggles

Dear Friend and Reader:

As you head into the weekend (for many U.S. readers, a long holiday), you’ll want to know that the astrology has some things to say about power struggles and confrontations. Mercury and Mars, both in Cancer, are opposing Pluto in Capricorn. At their best, this pair of oppositions can be leveraged to get beneath the surface of things.

Photo by Amanda Painter.

Mercury opposite Pluto, exact at 8:36 pm EDT tonight (00:36 UTC Friday), is especially good for deep research into a topic or uncovering a secret. With the sign Cancer involved, this could easily mean getting to the underlying emotions that are driving an interpersonal situation or reaction.

In its most productive expression, Mars opposite Pluto (exact July 2 at 8:02 am EDT / 12:02 UTC) can be used to make positive, creative changes in your life.

Again, with Cancer involved, that might mean giving yourself an ‘attitude adjustment’ if your emotional reactivity has been swinging to extremes. What’s really bothering you? Or it could relate to overdue updates to your actual home environment, just as one example. The main idea is to use the energy constructively and consciously in some way, so that it does not end up using you.

What would that look like? Think power struggles, manipulation, obsession, and trying to control the emotions and actions of others. Remember, you can only ever truly control your own actions and reactions, not anybody else’s.

More generally speaking, a Mars-Pluto opposition is a caution to avoid situations that are known to be dangerous, ‘bad’ neighborhoods, unnecessary risk, and confrontation for its own sake. With a long holiday weekend for many, you’d think that most people would be more relaxed than usual. But when you factor in things like long drives, alcohol, extended families and in-laws, and fireworks, it can be easy for tension to rise and for disagreements to escalate.

So the astrology this weekend is a reminder to practice your deep breathing along with your honesty. Even more importantly, it’s a reminder to stay in touch with your empathy.

Photo by Amanda Painter.

If you feel yourself being drawn into a power struggle of any kind — whether with your neighbor about their loud party (or yours), or with another motorist on a clogged highway exit, or with a family member about plans — your ethics and your empathy will be your most valuable tools. Do you really need to ‘win’ at all costs or prove you’re right?

What exactly is at stake? If your answer is “my ego,” that’s a big red flag to take a step back for some perspective. Same if your answer is “the perfect (whatever)” — there’s no such thing as perfection, after all.

If someone’s health and physical safety hangs in the balance, that would be the time to appeal to the empathy of those around you. You don’t need to stoop to manipulation, just state the facts — and be prepared to leave the situation if necessary.

Astrologer Robert Hand also suggests enlisting the help of others in a Mars-Pluto-style confrontation, rather than going it alone. Current events these days would seem to corroborate the idea of safety in numbers, or in having witnesses, especially in the face of a potentially abusive authority figure. This comes with one caveat: ‘crowd mentality’ is a different beast, with its own dangers. It’s important to keep tabs on any environment where that could be an issue — that is, where people stop thinking as individuals — and to stay sensitive to shifting energy.

All in all, having the Moon in Libra from Friday morning through Sunday afternoon may assist in keeping things fair, balanced and pleasant. By the time the Moon changes signs, both Mercury and Mars will be slipping away from their contact with Pluto, which should aid in resolving anything that’s come up.

Yours & truly,

Your Planet Waves Horoscope for June 30, 2017 | By Eric Francis

Aries (March 20-April 19) — Part of being an adult means having dealt with your parents. This happens so rarely that the idea is being lost. The first step is recognizing how much power they hold over you — even if they’ve left the world. Be honest with yourself about the ways you feel held back or controlled.

Taurus (April 19-May 20) — You may not see the point of recent events, though over the next few days they will make much more sense. The underlying theme is how you present yourself to other people, contrasted with what you feel within. You’re learning how to be consistent, which saves energy and is much easier.

Gemini (May 20-June 21) — You now have a clearer picture where you stand with someone, and more significantly, the ways in which your viewpoints contrast. Can you identify any common ground? What more would it take for you to trust this person enough to explore some mutually agreed place? Have that discussion.

Cancer (June 21-July 22) — There are all kinds of confrontations. Even politely and accurately saying to someone, “You are wearing a red hat,” counts as one. You are ready to go face to face with the world right now, though you may have little idea about the actual structure of power. Be gentle, and ask questions.

Leo (July 22-Aug. 23) — Be generous with your praise today and this weekend. Tell people how much you appreciate who they are, not just what they do. Be specific. Remember that most people have a problem that you’re unlikely to have: they feel invisible. When you notice someone, tell them that. You will make a difference.

Virgo (Aug. 23-Sep. 22) — You may feel like you have more money than you really do, so be cautious what you spend, and what you commit to. If you have extra cash, set some aside for a rainy day — or better yet, for a sunny day. Make sure that whatever you spend is an actual investment in yourself.


Libra (Sep. 22-Oct. 23) — Deflect credit for your accomplishments today. Thank people politely and tell people how supportive your bosses, colleagues or employees have been. This will show appreciation for what others have done, and inoculate you from seeming like you’re taking credit that’s not yours.

Scorpio (Oct. 23-Nov. 22) — This is an appropriate time to consider what you do entirely and exclusively for service. The Sanskrit word is ‘seva’, for which there is no corresponding concept in our culture. What is your long-term devotion, offered for the sake of helping others, and for no other purpose?

Sagittarius (Nov. 22-Dec. 22) — One question that would serve you well is, would you do what you do for no pay? Or must you get paid? If money is motivating you, then that’s something different from inner devotion to something for its own sake. Such devotion, and that alone, must guide your way.

Capricorn (Dec. 22-Jan. 20) — You’re starting to see that a relationship that was so recently fraught with strife and drama can be turned to much better ends. Yet the ends are not what counts: what matters is the quality of the moment you are living in. Imagine that the only eventuality is what you experience right now.

Aquarius (Jan. 20-Feb. 19) — You have reached a turning point, wherein you will either embrace the meaning of love — and love as your only motive — or you’ll set that lesson aside for some other time (or lifetime). What’s the question really about? Have you focused it in your awareness? What, exactly, could be better?

Pisces (Feb. 19-March 20) — Keep guiding yourself in the direction you want to go. You still have strong currents beneath you, and fair winds behind you. Those are, of course, factors within your consciousness. You contain your own inner winds and tides; and you must be a master of them, to influence your destiny at all.

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