A New Paradigm 

For the week of August 10-17, 2011.

The planets continue to generate a multidimensional time warp this week, and as they obscure the distinctions between the past, present, and future, many of us are likely to continue to feel more than a little disoriented. Of course, it is possible to remedy the confusion by making your mantra "be here now," but it's really hard to be in the moment when the moment keeps shifting. When chronological continuity breaks down, holding a steady internal or external bearing requires a mighty effort of concentration and focus. It also requires patience — and lots of it — especially if the ones we love (or the ones we hardly even know) are reacting to the intensity by pointing a shaming or blaming finger, or demanding more than we can deliver. The best way to avoid getting snagged is to remember the basics: Be thankful for what is true in your life. Honor what brings you joy. Be humble in the face of uncertainty. Be determined to do whatever it takes to live consciously in the midst of change.

This planetary time portal has more to do with the ongoing Uranus/Pluto square than it does with Mercury Retrograde. It's not that I want to take any credit away from Mercury Retrograde — we all know how powerful that astro trickster can be. But Mercury Retrograde is all about the superficial (albeit at times consuming) interruption of regular routines through a maze of delays and detours. Annoying, but manageable.

The Uranus/Pluto square is disrupting time at a much deeper level because it is previewing what is to come by pointing out the problems with what is. But that's not all. It is also insisting on a new paradigm that will transform the paradigm of the past. From a personal perspective, that translates into understanding that the roots of repetitive relationship behavior are rooted in family-of-origin dynamics and that those patterns won't change until the causal level is revealed and integrated. From a collective point of view, it's all about the realization that myopic economic systems that fail to acknowledge the interconnectedness of the global market will no longer work — for anyone. We are currently in the first close contact of the Uranus/Pluto square, which means we are in a preview of what is likely to emerge over the course of the coming four to five years, when Uranus and Pluto form seven exact squares from June 2012 through March 2015.

This week, Mars continues to write, direct, and star in the Uranus/Pluto preview as it squares Uranus and opposes Pluto. Mars signifies energy. Uranus symbolizes the need to be independent. Squares represent friction. This square tilts toward intolerance, and the entire combination plays out as a battle against anything or anyone that inhibits or impedes freedom. When you add a Mars/Pluto opposition to the mix, that need for liberty easily leans toward brutality and violence as a way of establishing dominance and power. Refuse to engage in any activities that threaten or harm any sentient being, including yourself. Nothing ever comes of violence except more violence.

If you know your Ascendant and/or your Moon Sign, read that, too.

ARIES You think the problem is your significant other, personal or professional, but at the core, it's really about you learning to open your heart at a deeper level so that you can receive the love that's offered.

TAURUS Certain conversation poses a challenge to your composure, and while it may not be easy to stay calm, this is not the time to do battle. There will be other opportunities to make your point when tempers cool off.

GEMINI Try not to let disagreements with friends over money turn into confrontations. Be clear, direct, and precise about what's owed and then listen carefully to any discrepancies in need of attention and adjustment.

CANCER You may experience the intensity as oppositional, and while in some cases that may be true, the gift of this experience is learning how to transform polarization into synthesis and consensus.

LEO Accentuate the positive, and you'll turn the lead of negative thinking into the gold of an optimistic outlook with the power to shift several persistent problems you haven't been able to solve.

VIRGO True value can never be measured by material means. So rather than judge yourself on the basis of your bank account, find a deeper, truer way of assessing your ultimate worth.

LIBRA Grab hold of the idea that your happiness is solely dependent upon your ability to be yourself regardless of what others need and want, and you'll set yourself free. Sounds simple, but perfecting this point of view will take practice.

SCORPIO Before you blurt out words you might later regret, take a deep breath, and think about whether the pleasure of blowing off steam will be worth the long-term consequences.

SAGITTARIUS I'm not quite sure how you will pull it off, but if you can avoid engaging in arguments over meaningless matters, your opinion will be sought after and your ideas respected.

CAPRICORN It's another week of potential conflict with significant others, personal and professional. Try to avoid assuming a polarized position that will only alienate others. Here's some help: When possible, be kind.

AQUARIUS Staying patient in the middle of a time warp is no easy feat, but you're up to the task, especially if you can remember to witness rather than react as the situation unfolds.

PISCES It's mostly a matter of being clear about what you know to be true, and then having the confidence to stand in your truth no matter how others may want to spin it.

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