Stress and Meltdowns on the Horizon 

For the week of August 12-18, 2009.

Put on your Armadillo Armor, grab your patience pills, and make sure you have plenty of Rescue Remedy handy. This week and the next several weeks are a hotbed of planetary conflict that is certain to manifest on Earth as a minefield of confrontation. We're already in a war of words intended to create a quarrelsome, antagonistic atmosphere aimed at impeding forward progress. And as the Right Wing's campaign to terrify and manipulate legions of people already terrified by a world they can't comprehend escalates, opposition to that strategy is bound to engage even mild-mannered Democrats. From a global perspective, political conflicts already inflamed into physical combat turn even more aggressive. From a personal point of view, as suppressed, repressed, and depressed feelings rise to the surface of daily interactions, many of us are sure to start chanting, "I'm mad as hell and I'm not taking it anymore." It's rebellion across the board because it's just too intense. So intense, that even protection by the proper rites, rituals, or pharmaceuticals may not be enough to stave off impulsive reactions.

The celestial source of stress is Mars/Saturn/Uranus t-square, a tense fractious three-pronged pitchfork that stimulates frustration, agitation, and upheaval. Mars is at the midpoint of this difficult configuration. (1) Its square to Saturn was exact on August 10, but even as it continues to separate, it generates friction, especially when it comes to authority figures. Saturn does, after all, symbolize the rules and the regulations, and it insists on control. Parents of teenagers, pay attention: This square stimulates stubborn resistance and the tendency to act out. (2) As the week unfolds, Mars moves into its square with Uranus, and we move into action. This square is exact on August 18, but stays operative until August 27. Known for its explosive signature, this volatile interaction incites revolution wherever it can. From a political perspective, you can count on insurgency, especially where an unjust system has grown complacent in its power. On the personal plane, this Mars/Uranus square often spells d-i-v-o-r-c-e unless both parties make a giant effort to figure out how to work through the problems.

(3) Saturn and Uranus are tightening into their third exact opposition, which occurs on September 15, 2009. This opposition is about what happens when great waves of change wash away the structures of daily life. The financial foundations of the world are gone, and for many that means the regular routine of going to work has vanished, a disruption that cannot be measured solely in dollars and cents. And as the tension mounts during the coming weeks, you can expect some among us to meltdown from the emotional, mental, and spiritual stress of not knowing what to do and no viable solution in sight.

Which is why, once again, it is important to remember that we are all in this together and we need each other to pull through. So when you can, lend a helping hand to someone in need. With your love you can change the world.

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

ARIES Mindfulness continues to be the best way through the current climate of conflict. So continue to be clear, direct, and above all patient, especially with those less able to cope with the stress.

TAURUS Despite the tension, there are good career gains to be made. Actualize strategy and satisfy your ambition, just be careful not to create your success at the expense of others.

GEMINI While there are serious challenges to your calm demeanor, you can maintain your equilibrium, and therefore your cool, by refusing to engage in negativity of any kind. Be positive and you will stay that way.

CANCER You can transform this crisis into an opportunity, but only if you are willing to take responsibility for your role. Be aware, this is not about blame. It is about recognizing your behavior and changing it.

LEO The emphasis is still on relating, but this week the focus moves from the internal to the external. Handle all your relationships with kindness and generosity, and you'll have no need to wonder if you are appreciated.

VIRGO Be confident about your choices. And even if others disagree, try not to let any negative interference from partners, personal or professional, or co-workers throw you off track.

LIBRA If you can stay clear about what your goals are and why, you will handle the vicissitudes of the week with skill and grace. So no matter what the distraction may be, continue to be disciplined and determined to succeed.

SCORPIO It's possible to shift an old attitude, but only if you're open to a change of heart. Pay attention to information delivered through conversations with significant others that will stimulate a new approach.

SAGITTARIUS Continue to do your best to not say more than is absolutely necessary. I know this requires great effort, but in certain situations you will be more than glad for your reticence and reserve.

CAPRICORN Try not to let anxiety, yours or others, determine your mood or affect your decisions. Yes, there are difficulties to overcome, but you have the strength to get through — and you will.

AQUARIUS You may know the drill, but that might not make it any easier to implement the plan, especially if certain individuals insist on confrontation. You also know the benefits of kindness and the wonders it works.

PISCES It's not just about your anxiety. Your situation is also about finding a way to protect yourself from the anxiety of others, which is why establishing clear boundaries would be a good start.

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