Arts & Culture » Aquarium Age

Patience Is a Virtue

For the week of April 11-17, 2012.

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Listen closely and you'll hear the sky shouting, "Earthlings, start your engines." And don't be surprised if you also hear a roar of approval resounding through the ethers. Just don't let the antsy excitement of days prior to Mars Direct — Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday — fool you into false starts that might waste time and disqualify you from the actual "event." Bide your time, and wait until Saturday when the final stretch of a nearly twelve-week Mars Retrograde is over, to put your bodies (and everything else) in motion. Mars "turns around" very late in the day on Friday, April 13, and these last few days of practiced restraint could irritate nervous systems, especially those already fried from trying to be as patient as possible. Most, if not all of us, are more than willing to put an end to the constant culling from the past and enter into new territory. So hold on for just a few more cosmic moments; relief really is in sight.

But nothing is simple, not even the end of a Mars Retrograde, for as Mars goes direct it's likely to generate rhythmic disturbances, sending ripples through the routines of daily life. Don't forget, many of us adapted to its "backward" motion — and got used to it. Now, as Mars moves forward, "normal" is going to shift, and that's sure to take some getting used to. Mars punctuates this entire adjustment period by taking its time — a week or so — to gather momentum, so don't be surprised if you feel suspended in time.

A Sun/Saturn opposition, while not directly related to Mars, exacerbates pre- and post-Mars Direct irritations this week. All Sun/Saturn contacts carry a serious signature, and this opposition, with the Sun, in Aries, and Saturn, in Libra, symbolizes the tension between the need to push ahead and the desire to weigh the consequences before taking action. Notice where you're feeling willful, and rather than resent Saturn's challenge, use it as a gauge. Not every impulse needs to be satisfied. Focus Saturn's sobering intensity on projects that need precision.

Mars Retrograde turned the first three months of 2012 into an invitation (of sorts) to identify and confront persistent issues that previously seemed to evade a true process of transformation. And while many of us are still unconscious or in denial (I'm not naming any names — just sayin'), many more of us found the courage to confront deeply entrenched patterns, even if that confrontation meant facing demons, both internal and external. Of course there is always more work to be done, but that knowledge doesn't diminish the work of the moment.

As Mars gathers forward-momentum over the coming weeks, it will provide plenty of opportunities to rebuild and replenish personal reservoirs of stamina, strength, and confidence. Use this time wisely by making your keyword "authenticity." Align with the bravery of Mars and show up for your situation, whatever it might be. Conscious participation at every level of life is the positive key to so many of the problems we face, personal as well as collective. And also be aware that Virgo, where Mars has lingered for so long and will continue to traverse for the next several months, has the power to reveal the true interconnectedness of life, the ecosystem that underlies all of our interactions — physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual.

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

ARIES It's a balancing act, and the only way to maintain your equilibrium is to know deep within that you're not in control of the outcome. So surrender to the process and continue to trust.

TAURUS You're still in a powerful phase of synthesis, reconciling opposites in an effort to create greater wholeness. Contemplate how the apparent polarities in your life are actually complementary forces.

GEMINI Once again, it's about turning the situation on its head and looking at the strife in your life from a different perspective. Yes, you've been trying to do just that, so don't give up now.

CANCER Don't apologize for the need to process your changes verbally — just talk them out with your trusted advisors. Consider as many ideas as necessary until you find the solution.

LEO Finances are still a concern, but this week the emphasis is on more than material value. Focus on issues of ultimate value, and consider how to improve your self-esteem.

VIRGO Compared to your Martian approach, significant others could appear to be slackers. Make moderation your mantra, and you'll find the solid ground of reasonable compromise.

LIBRA There's no need to frame your situation as a failure. Instead consider it the next step in the process of revolutionizing your relationship to relationships.

SCORPIO Continue to take in the biggest possible perspective, and you'll have a context for the next phase. Remember: The past creates the present as the present creates the future.

SAGITTARIUS There's no need to curb your ambition and every reason to think big and be bold. All you need is the willingness to continue doing whatever it takes to turn your vision into reality.

CAPRICORN It's a no-brainer: Allow yourself to be pulled into a spin by unexpected emotional undercurrents or use those feelings to gain a greater perspective.

AQUARIUS There are tangible financial gains to be made, but to make the most of this moment, you must be willing to be realistic, grounded, and steadfast in your efforts.

PISCES Choose your words carefully, and you'll have an easier time handling the waves of the week. Significant others may be just as sensitive as you — maybe even more.

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