For the week of July 16, 2020
By Rob Brezsny
ARIES (March 21-April 19): “If the time is not ripe, we have to ripen the time,” wrote Aries educator and activist Dorothy Height. This approach worked well during her 98 years on the planet. Her pioneering advocacy for African-American women generated a number of practical improvements in their employment opportunities and civil rights. In accordance with the current astrological omens, I highly recommend her guiding principle for your use. You now have the power to ripen the time, even if no one else believes the time is ripe.
TAURUS (April 20-May 20): “Whatever inspiration is, it’s born from a continuous ‘I don’t know.’” A wise and talented woman said that: Nobel Prize-winning poet Wisława Szymborska. According to my analysis of the astrological omens, it’s excellent advice for you to embrace during the coming weeks. You’re close to finding and accessing a mother lode of inspiration, and one of the best ways to ensure that happens in an optimal way is to make “I don’t know” your mantra. In other words, be cheerfully devoted to shedding your certainties. Lose your attachment to the beliefs and theories you tend to overly rely on. Make yourself as empty and clear and spacious as you possibly can.
GEMINI (May 21-June 20): Gemini-born author Djuna Barnes (1892–1982) was a world traveler who wrote in several different genres, including lesbian fiction, essays on boxing and plays that used poetic language. She was experimental and empirical and experiential. On one occasion, she voluntarily submitted to the force-feeding endured by hunger-striking suffragists so she could write about what it was like to be tortured. Another fun fact about Djuna: Every morning, she did up her hair and put her make-up on, then climbed into bed and wrote for many hours. In the coming weeks, I recommend you draw inspiration from every aspect of her life—except the torture part, of course. The coming weeks will be a fine time to be versatile, exploratory and committed to expressing yourself purely in whatever ways make you comfortably excited.
CANCER (June 21-July 22): You have a natural propensity to study and understand what author Margaret Atwood describes as “echoes and emptiness and shadow.” I believe this aspect of your repertoire will be especially active and available to you in the coming weeks. For best results, regard your attunement to these echoes and emptiness and shadow as an asset, even a precious talent. Use it to discern what’s missing or lost but could be recovered. Invoke it to help you navigate your way through murky or confusing situations. Call on it to help you see important things that are invisible to others.
LEO (July 23-Aug. 22): “Time can turn a scab into a beauty mark,” said actor and screenwriter Nia Vardalos. That’s a rousingly poetic speculation—and more metaphorically true than literally. But I suspect that if it ever might have a useful and meaningful application to an actual human struggle, it will be yours in the coming months. In my view, you are in fact capable of harnessing the magic necessary to transform a wound into a lovely asset. Be bold and imaginative as you carry out this seemingly improbable feat—which is actually not improbable.
VIRGO (Aug. 23-Sept. 22): Would you like to boost your mental and physical health in the coming weeks? Try this: Immerse yourself in the understanding that you’re interconnected with everything in the world. Tell yourself stories about how the atoms that compose your body have previously been part of many other things. This isn’t just a poetic metaphor; it’s scientific fact. Now study this passage by science writer Ella Frances Sanders: “The carbon inside you could have existed in any number of creatures or natural disasters before finding you. That particular atom residing somewhere above your left eyebrow? It could well have been a smooth riverbed pebble before deciding to call you home. You are rock and wave and the peeling bark of trees, you are ladybirds and the smell of a garden after the rain.”
LIBRA (Sept. 23-Oct. 22): It’s a favorable time to celebrate the fantastic privilege of being alive. Are you willing to believe that? Will you cooperate with my intention to nudge you in the direction of elation and exaltation? Are you open to the possibility that miracles and epiphanies may be at hand for you personally? To help get yourself in the proper mood, read this passage by Libran author Diane Ackerman: “The great affair, the love affair with life, is to live as variously as possible, to groom one’s curiosity like a high-spirited thoroughbred, climb aboard and gallop over the thick, sunstruck hills every day.”
SCORPIO (Oct. 23-Nov. 21): “Deciding to remember, and what to remember, is how we decide who we are,” writes poet Robert Pinsky. That’s useful counsel for you right now. You’re entering a phase when you can substantially reframe your life story so that it serves you better. And one of the smartest ways to do that is to take an inventory of the memories you want to emphasize versus the memories you’d like to minimize. Another good trick is to reinterpret challenging past events so that you can focus on how they strengthened you and mobilized your determination to be true to yourself.
SAGITTARIUS (Nov. 22-Dec. 21): “A person must dream a long time in order to act with grandeur,” wrote Sagittarian author and activist Jean Genet. “And dreaming is nursed in darkness.” According to my analysis of your astrological omens, this is an apt description of what has been unfolding for you—and will continue to play out for you in the next two weeks. If you’re aligned with cosmic rhythms, you have been nursing your dreams in darkness—exploring and cultivating and learning from the raw creative energy that is simmering and ripening in your inner depths. Keep doing this important work, even if there are not yet any productive results. Eventually, it will enable you to “act with grandeur,” as Genet said.
CAPRICORN (Dec. 22-Jan. 19): Poet and filmmaker Jean Cocteau said, “There are truths that one can only say after having won the right to say them.” In my estimation, you have recently earned the right to express a fresh batch of scintillating and useful truths. Please do us all a favor and unveil them—preferably with both candor and tact. In behalf of everyone who will benefit from your insights, I’m sending you congratulations for the work you’ve had to do on yourself so as to win them.
AQUARIUS (Jan. 20-Feb. 18): “After you make a fool of yourself a few hundred times, you learn what works,” testifies musician and singer Gwen Stefani. In my own life, I’ve had to make a fool of myself more than a few hundred times to learn what works. My number is closer to a thousand—and I’m still adding new examples on a regular basis. In the coming weeks, I highly recommend that you try what has served me and Stefani so well. You’re entering a phase when your foolishness will generate especially useful lessons. Being innocent and wildly open-minded will also be very useful.
PISCES (Feb. 19-March 20): “It is better to err on the side of daring than the side of caution,” wrote author and futurist Alvin Toffler. While I hesitate to declare that idea to be absolutely and always true, I do recommend it to you in the coming weeks. Given the fact that you have recently been expanding possibilities and cultivating breakthroughs, I’d love to see you keep on pushing forward until you climax your momentum. To boost your courage, try to think of a crazy cry of exhilaration you might exclaim as you make your leaps, like “Yahoo!” or “Hell, yes!” or “Here I come!”