Planet Waves Monthly – July 2008

Purple shore crab. Photographer: Shannon Beauford.

THE SEEMINGLY ENDLESS Mercury retrograde of May and June is finally over and a new season has begun. If that big hunk of iron going past the Earth set your life into various shades of emotional, technological or financial chaos, use the new environment to gently set things back in order. Planetary movements for July take us from a prevailing state of restless mental agitation (a heck of a lot of Gemini) into a space of emotional depth (the Sun and personal planets in Cancer). There’s a significant difference, as you will feel. The widely perceived problem with emotions is that they seem to put us in a passive position. We seem so subjected to their movements, their currents, their unpredictability. When we’re mentally obsessed, we have the illusion of control. When the emotional waters grow deep, many people feel helpless, and retreat to their prefab concepts and ideas about life. However, there is nothing passive about feeling. Indeed, feeling is a form of initiative because it allows us to exist in the moment, within a shared environment. The ultimate proactive position in life is to be sincere. This month’s astrology will support you in doing just that. In my view as an astrologer and traveler, it’s worth the risk.

Aries (March 21-April 19)
I suggest you direct your energy and aggression toward feathering your nest. Such is not the pinnacle of human civilization, but in a sense it is the foundation of it. For the next couple of weeks, you may feel like you’re banging your head against a wall where work-related projects are concerned; you may be up against all of your limits; and there may be someone driving you to the edge of your patience, and you may have got the idea from somewhere that it’s your job to fix them. In the alternate, you may decide it’s your job to fix yourself. Growth, however, consists of more than mental or mechanical tinkering, and in a fairly short time you’re likely to have decided that so much you thought was wrong is simply well enough. Perfection for you is now a matter of easing back rather than driving forward. You clearly want a sense of belonging, of safety, of an environment that can support you; but the way to be there is to receive and accept, rather than to conquer and be aggressive. This is a fancy way of saying despite the many pressures you are under, take it easy.Taurus (April 20-May 20)
You may be in a titanic struggle to set some aspect of your creativity free. It would not be a stretch to say that you’re also trying to dissolve some stubborn block to your erotic expression, which I would note is predominantly a mental block. If you are seeking the assistance of someone in this effort, be careful what role you assign them. Many people feel that it’s acceptable to let others take their risks, or to put themselves in a position that is essentially a setup for their own submission. This often happens when you cannot submit to your own will. You can then allow yourself to be backed into a corner and have certain decisions be made for you, or to allow someone else’s desire nature to take over where your own is lacking. One way to look at this month’s astrology on a psychological level is as an exploration of a struggle between your craving for curiosity and passion, and your tendency to be conservative, withholding or psychologically rigid. On the interpersonal level, it’s a study in the role that you assign to men. You may fear that if you respect their strength, you must succumb to your own weakness. But that is not necessary.Gemini (May 21-June 20)
You may have come to the point where you decided that making any decision was better than making no decision at all, and you will soon see how that works out for you. I can assure you that while it won’t develop quite as you planned, you set up the situation excellently for the opportunity to make another choice at an opportune moment. It’s important that you eliminate the concept “setback” or “detour” from your lexicon and instead work with the concept that each of the odd events of your recent life is leading you to the right place. This is particularly true regarding a financial decision you seem to be making, or the choice about how to manage some of your assets. To reduce the margin for error, you need to think in terms of what you have rather than what you don’t have; what you are doing right rather than what you are doing wrong; what you know rather than what you don’t know. It is true that the past few weeks have been frustrating, but they’ve had a silver lining. You learned a lot about yourself, and by some odd coincidence, you have arrived right at the point where you can put that knowledge to work.

Galapagos Crab. Photographer: Alistair Watters.

Cancer (June 21-July 22)
Your moment, or a great moment, has arrived. It is however a time when you must be certain you’re more committed to success than to struggle. I know, this is not easy, mainly because few people recognize the issue in such simple terms. For most, the concept would seem like wishful thinking, which does not get the bills paid. For you, it is the only necessity. Ease and flow are indicative of a state of mind, not a particular result in the external world. Like all water sign people, it’s vital that you proceed with your life from the inside out: from your feelings, then extending into the world. Everything — and I do mean everything — emanates from your emotional core and ripples outward into your perception and experience. This, in turn, becomes the magnet that draws the life you want toward you. Stay close to your inner tides, your moods, your movements of energy. Pay attention to the elusive issue of balance, and remember you are living on the planet in a time when very nearly everything and everyone is out of balance. Note carefully how your feelings change as the new season develops. In order to achieve the breakthrough that you seem destined to make, you are going to be inclined to push your mind into overdrive. Think, but think gently. Feel, and feel boldly.

Leo (July 23-Aug. 22)
There are two kinds of fantasies: the idle ones, that are more like wishes; and the ones where you summon your deepest creativity and activate the power of your imagination. As a Leo, you are much more inclined to the second type, and especially now. Consider for a moment that your thoughts actually have creative power. Consider that they are like blueprints that establish the pathways of your psychic architecture. One reason this is not a popular theory is because if it’s true, we might be concerned that fear would have the same power to create negativity. I don’t think this is true; rather, I think that fear serves mostly to block creative power, waste energy and distract us, rather than to create specific negative outcomes. What you need to remember is that fear and creativity have a distinct relationship. The more creative potency we apply to a situation, the more fear we are likely to stir up and will need to process. This willingness to work with fear rather than against it is often the line between true and false creativity. So keep shining your light. Pour it into the shadows, and look for the many ways there is simply nothing there — then collect all that energy that was holding you back from envisioning the future and taking action to create it.

Virgo (Aug. 23-Sep. 22)
You have a right to change who you are, and you’ve probably decided the time to do so is now. Indeed, it would appear that you have embarked on one of the most detailed and energetic self-improvement programs of your life. Before you get too far, I would propose that changing who you are is not nearly as important as re-visioning how you feel about yourself. Notably, the influences that are pushing you, and pushing you so hard, to improve yourself are likely to be sending you negative, conflicted or frustrated signals. Another set of influences is encouraging you to accept yourself exactly as you are right now. I recognize the difficulty of this paradox, and I know how pervasive it is in spiritual and self-help circles. The whole game seems to be founded in the need to change, and is activated by acceptance. But we don’t necessarily see that acceptance is the form of change that makes all others possible. Obviously, putting yourself under a lot of pressure does not work. If, however, you discover that you are already under some enormous psychic pressure or carrying what seems to be a burden you don’t understand, that is a sign that you need to switch methods. You may not recognize that what you are going through now is indeed a burden, even though you may feel it is a virtue.

Libra (Sep. 23-Oct. 22)
What is troubling you? It would help if your fears were not so detailed, and it would help more if they did not become an instant point of contention. The real fear you’re struggling with is that of isolation. It’s as though you feel removed from yourself as well as from the world, though there may be no physical reason in your environment for this. Your solar chart strongly suggests that you are starting to feel angry about being isolated. The problem is that it’s not entirely true. There are key facets of your life where you are visible, participating in the world and the focus of true admiration. This may conflict directly with your sense of your own existence; you may not even be able to see the evidence that you are having an impact. Please recognize: your work is not only having an impact, you are reaching people on the emotional level as well. You are finally involved with something that expresses your true values, your commitment to caring for the world, and which meets the most important criteria of all, contacts people personally. Therefore, you can feel good about responding to the call for leadership. If you’re feeling isolated, let that stand as a reminder of the condition of 99% of the population, and is a key part of why you must do the work you are being called upon to do.

Scorpio (Oct. 23-Nov. 21)
There are many ways to find your niche in life, and this would seem to be your preoccupation at the moment. The service role you’re seeking in your community appears to be some combination of healer and information specialist. This is not particularly easy, given that most people, despite what they may claim, don’t actually want what helps them; they want what entertains them. Most don’t want what they need; they want what they want. It is not up to you to personally turn the tide of Western civilization, though for the next few weeks you may feel that it is. Start on a scale you understand, which is definitely smaller than the scale you want to be working on. Rather than alienating people with your message, I suggest you seek allies in your community who are on the same basic wavelength as you are, and then let your community function be about leadership and coordination. As someone who possesses both passion and intelligence, you’re the person with the best resume for the job. If you look at your long-term vision, in part based on your extensive experience and in part based on your stated goals, you’ll see that this kind of involvement fits your agenda perfectly.

Sagittarius (Nov. 22-Dec. 21)
Pluto has made a brief return to your sign, the last for more than two centuries. A long era of your life is drawing to a close. Indeed, an important era in the history of our community and our culture is about to turn the page. The brief interval between now and just before your birthday when Pluto is in Sagittarius is a crucial phase of summing up the many visions you have had for your life since the mid-1990s, and aligning the most meaningful ones with your true intentions. We have all grown a little too large in this era. This time in both personal and cultural history has been one characterized by the drive to put quantity over quality; to grab anything we can get; to conquer the world rather than to see the world in a grain of sand. In this time, you have taken on a role of ideological leadership. There are aspects of this that have worked brilliantly, and others that seem to have fallen flat. You now have a brief interval of time to review your accomplishments, unfinished business and apparent failures. Five months at the end of an approximately 14-year phase is not long; it is so short most people will not even notice that the time has passed. Pluto is not one who appreciates being gainsaid. Note this moment carefully.

A hermit crab and its house. Courtesy of A Fish Blog.

Capricorn (Dec. 22-Jan. 19)
You cannot force yourself to believe something, no matter how much you may want to. Facts do not add up to faith, just as all the saints do not add up to God. What you really need to do is look at the world around you with your eyes open, and take in the direct evidence of what is so. By that I mean look at the world immediately around you, close-by and right now, and you will have all the verification you need for a question that is grating at you; you will have all the justification for sincere belief, and in the end, all the supporting data to make the point to others who may need evidence. Anyway, the truth of one particular matter of right and wrong will soon be obvious, and the revelation is likely to compel you to change how you think. It may help to remind you that what is true needs to be valid more than in principle. Reality stands on its own merit and does not need a theory to back it up. Therefore, if you find yourself theorizing, speculating or projecting far into the future, stop and check yourself. Is there something you’re avoiding? Is there someone close to you whose feelings you need to admit and acknowledge, in their entirety? You may want to phrase the question that way, and make sure you open your heart and your mind when the time comes to listen.

Aquarius (Jan. 20-Feb. 18)
Someone may be driving a hard bargain, and may indeed seem perfectly unreasonable in their approach. You must use psychology, not persuasion or force. They are being unreasonable with themselves more than with anyone else, and this situation will pass without your doing too much. However, you may be taking it personally, and you may be inclined to respond. If so, you’ll need to work out the mental chess game that they are putting themselves through; and, in a sense, you’ll need to know anyone you’re dealing with better than they know themselves. This is easy because most people lack any objectivity on their own situation. What you need to do at the same time is maintain some objectivity about your own status. Here is one fairly obvious key. Finding a meeting place will come in the form of acknowledging the spirit of the plans rather than the excruciating details. To set yourself free of the scourge that is afflicting so many at the moment, you will need to keep your Aquarian equanimity at the front of your very broad mind. You also need to give the impression — and take on board — the fact that certain details do indeed matter, but what they add up to matters entirely more.

Pisces (Feb. 19-March 20)
Distance yourself from the struggles of others. They’re not your problem, but they can become so if you get too involved. At this point, it may be that many people around you are in an identity crisis, struggling with changes or caught in some degree of mental frustration. However, this condition is not unanimous, and neither are the styles in which people are going through their wide diversity of movements and developments. This is a particularly meaningful time for you to figure out who’s who and what’s what in your relationships. It’s one part of an overall get-serious campaign that you were summoned to embark on about one year ago. To my thinking, this amounts to being aware and seeing patterns, for example, patterns of giving and receiving; of how people handle their life crises; and of how they perceive you and what they think your role is in their life. The overarching theme of your relationships now is setting limits and paying attention to the details. They are related, because being the generous person you are, you will need to set those limits — and reclaim your energy — one relationship at a time. After a while, you’ll figure out with whom you want to share the best of what you have to offer. Until then, bide your time.

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