Planets' Hope Springs Eternal 

For the week of February 17-23, 2010.

The planets proclaim another week of positive potential. And because it's been such a long time since back-to-back optimistic alignments trumped challenging ones, I can hardly believe my eyes. Sure, there are still some grumpy moments and a fractious rub here and there — but overall, this week, just like last week, the stars support happy attitudes, compassionate methods, and lots and lots of laughter.

The source of this potential for optimism is the ongoing Venus/Jupiter conjunction, in Pisces, the Sign of empathy and compassion. Venus is the personification of true value, especially as those ideals are expressed through art. Jupiter represents the extensive expanse of knowledge, belief systems, and social sensibilities, especially as those collective sensitivities relate to morality and justice. Venus is exalted in Pisces; Jupiter is its ancient co-ruler. The entire bundle is a potent signature for harmonious interactions based on a genuine and generous concern for the well-being of others. So don't be surprised if you feel motivated to make a meaningful difference in your world.

This conjunction is about love in all its many manifestations, not just romantic inclinations. I am not suggesting romance should take a backseat during the second week of this conjunction. But on February 18, as the Sun moves into Pisces, its bright light is going to amplify a variety of possible manifestations. So while you may think this is only about amorous desire, be prepared for other possibilities, especially the inspiration to transform altruistic aspirations into actual accomplishments.

Try not to let the current political situation corrupt your Piscean vision of what's possible. While most of our politicians increasingly resemble the Borg, resistance to their constant barrage of misinformation is not futile. Resistance is essential, especially in the face of endless sound bytes that are geared to incite and inflame. Frankly, I'm convinced that these alien invader machines and their continuous effort to promote ignorance is really a dastardly plot to enslave us through stupidity. Be smarter. Turn off your television. Write your own stories. Sing your own songs. Listen to your own heart. This Sun/Jupiter/Venus conjunction, in Pisces, won't happen again for a very long time, which means it would be wise to make the most of it while you can.

As the week unfolds, you may also feel the quiet tug of Mars Retrograde. It goes Direct on March 10, which means by the end of this week it will start to slow down in preparation for its turn-around. That deceleration has the potential for great frustration. Mars has been retrograde since December 20, and now, as that journey starts to wind down, some of us are sure to get wound up. Do your best to stay calm and focused. And when possible, use humor to relieve the tension. Laughter is still the best medicine.

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

ARIES We seldom think of true power knowing its limits, but truly powerful people are comfortable within their limitations because they compensate by delegating. Be willing to assign certain tasks to the right people and you will reap tangible rewards.

TAURUS You may think your situation requires political negotiation, but if you are clear, precise, and direct about your intentions and goals, you'll bypass intrigue and go directly to success. Be true to yourself and you'll stay true to your vision.

GEMINI A gentle touch will work wonders in your professional life, so rather than push too hard, lighten up. Rely on your innate talent for freethinking, then apply that expansive perspective to situations in need of a healing hand.

CANCER A desire for love — all types of love — inspires a new attitude that is hungry for adventure, inside and out. Give yourself permission to explore a variety of relationships, and you'll access a deeper appreciation for the power of love.

LEO Don't hesitate to immerse yourself 100 percent in whatever brings you joy. It is your destiny to leap into life with unbridled passion, and while your enthusiasm doesn't always deliver, it's still a wondrous fire to behold.

VIRGO It won't be easy maintaining a balance in your relationships — your feelings are too intense to hold back or edit. So instead of trying to be cool, give yourself permission to simply be in the moment and enjoy the process.

LIBRA The ground is shifting, but you have the ability to roll with the motion. Rather than resist, allow these changes to unfold. Once you have a better understanding of the situation, you can make the necessary adjustments.

SCORPIO As John Lennon once sang, There's nothing you can do that can't be done. And never were words more true. Use this time wisely and you won't be disappointed with the results.

SAGITTARIUS Forces beyond your control are stirring the deepest part of your psychic pond, so rather than waste time and energy trying to be in charge, let go. Release the need for a specific outcome and you'll have a lot more fun.

CAPRICORN Allow thoughtful conversation with family, friends, and coworkers to stimulate a reflective process and you'll find yourself engaged in a beneficial dialogue that's both internal and external.

AQUARIUS Opportunities for financial gain continue, but the true benefits of this phase are to be found in the potential for greater self-esteem. Remember, true value can never be accurately measured by material means.

PISCES Surrender to the joy and let yourself feel it truly, madly, deeply. Opportunities to experience this kind of expansive creative signatures don't happen all that often. Don't resist; relish the intensity.

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