“Whatever happened to fun?” a legend once asked. After all, haven’t we arrived at Leo season, the land of milk and honey, to express ourselves in freedom and security? What happened to the promise of this spring, the horny embrace of anything and everything, now sinking under new mask mandates, breakthrough infections, and existential malaise? We had only just found a new simulation, and it feels like we’re already being booted out.
This is a retrograde, not a regression. On Aug. 19, Uranus, the planet of progress, joins fellow archetypal big-bads Jupiter, Saturn, Neptune, and Pluto in suspended orbit. What the planets are calling for is review, reintegration, and a moment to collect yourself between raging maelstroms. Moving back through Aquarius through the fall, the wise Jupiter and efficient Saturn want to ensure that any structural and societal changes made in this epochal interregnum are built to last. Everything feels hard because we’re working in service of a quantum shift, not just a respite from the drudgery of life as we knew it.
That said, it is Leo season, and so, by all means, go off! Embrace the new moon in Leo on Aug. 8 as an investment in your embodiment. While the big planets f*ck with the paradigm, any opportunity for creative release will keep you here, and out of the matrix. Then, on Aug. 22, we’ll face the blue double full moon in Aquarius — the second full moon in its sign in a row — which exhumes questions and challenges from the July 23 edition. The full moon goes down in the final moments of Leo season, offering one final look in the mirror. Consider it a chance to imagine a higher self, one operating in perfect harmony with a fast-evolving world, an emissary of possibility. This is your last chance to escape your myopic self-definition. It’s time to serve something bigger.
This linking up, of the you to the now, can’t be done through moodboards and manifestation — though they certainly help! Now is the time for decision and execution, and, fortunately, the month kicks off with Venus and Mars in Virgo, who runs the ship better than the hardest of hausfraus.
Like the sign’s titular virgin, or Lucy Liu in the seminal 2000s flick Charlie’s Angels, Virgo maintains perfection by saying no. Through hard limits, Virgo renders beautiful form. With progress hanging on the precipice of chaos, and our immune and mental health in the balance, Virgo season inspires you to charge, balance the checkbook, book the colonic, and call the exorcist. Enforce balance now, and you’ll be ready to roll when the planets start going direct in the fall. Now let’s get to work!
ARIES & ARIES RISING
At this point, the big-picture questions about how you want to make money and where you belong may render you catatonic, dissociated, and slouching toward despair. Sharpen your focus on the terms and conditions of what you do: What do you want to give right now, and how much of yourself do you have to offer? Any opportunity to bite down on a hard choice will feel like rocket fuel. By the time Mars joins Venus in Libra at the end of the month, you’ll be blasting off into a more public, collaborative stratosphere. Stock your ship, and chart your course now, so that you don’t get lost in space.
TAURUS & TAURUS RISING
After hanging onto the roller coaster of the last eight months — in which you’ve faced game-changing questions about your career, purpose, and freedom — the ride sputters, stalls and lurches, and you’re left hanging mid-air. Uranus, planet of liberation, goes retrograde in Taurus on Aug. 19, which could feel like a break from the chaos or a spiral into nightmarish stagnation. Break the existential bottleneck by throwing yourself into creative work and romantic experiences. Make yourself feel useful, visible, and of service. Take ownership of individual projects, no matter how small, so that you can rebuild the larger mosaic of your life.
GEMINI & GEMINI RISING
Consider this a moment for consolidation and synthesis, a reboot before you launch into a creative autumn. With Mercury cruising through your third house of daily rituals and your fourth house of home and foundations, you can honor your ruling god through routine, structure, and organization. The more you build your home base through systems of processing — closet organization, therapy, church retreats, fancy stationary — the clearer your focus will be when it’s time to launch your attack.
CANCER & CANCER RISING
If Leo season has you asking questions about your self-worth, don’t stop: Think bigger. A rapid expansion of self-confidence can and should extend to every arena of your life: finances, friends, and family. Avoid a myopic line of thinking about how you could do more, make yourself more available or try harder, and try to think objectively about the scale of your life. Is it the size of your paycheck that bugs you, or where the paycheck comes from? Are you an abject failure, or just shackled to outdated metrics of success? Do you not fit in, or are you clinging to the wrong scene? Identify the small ponds you’ve imprisoned yourself in, and prepare to find a much grander channel.
LEO & LEO RISING
The blood is finally back in your veins, and you’re heeding a clear call to feel yourself. But what is your point of view? Embrace the process and work patterns that work for you, even and especially if they can’t be marketed on TikTok. The full moon in Aquarius on Aug. 22 — the second in your opposing sign in two months — will reconnect you with your higher inspirations and motivations. Seek out the authentic ones in your life, who express themselves consistently on and off-camera, as your Obi-Wans. To finally embrace your originality, you’ll have to condition yourself, ’80s montage style, and cut out the noise. We need your voice, but we really need it to be your own, no matter how hard you have to work for it.
VIRGO & VIRGO RISING
Consider all of August an extended Virgo season, with Venus and Mars in your home sign from the jump, and Mercury joining in soon after. You’re finally behind the captain’s chair, and it feels like every choice you make yields an immediate result. Engage! But the new moon in Leo on Aug. 8, in your 12th house of closure, will inspire a review of the roles you’ve played in your personal history, and the ways you’ve been typecast — willingly or unwillingly. Now’s the time to rewrite the script, and reimagine the terms of how you work, how you’re seen, and what you have to give. The light is on you this month, so make sure you’re playing to the right audience.
LIBRA & LIBRA RISING
The goddess returns on Aug. 17, as Venus enters your home sign and lights the spark of life, light, and connection, making you radiate from the inside out. To avoid dissipating your social grace on just anyone, and losing yourself in a feedback loop of gratification and approval, you must execute clarity through discernment. As Mercury, the planet of communication, enters Virgo, in your 12th house of personal history, you’ll be challenged to speak honestly, decisively and in service to your feelings and experiences. Everyone’s smiling at you, but that doesn’t mean you have to smile along. Trust your instincts, even if they aren’t popular.
SCORPIO & SCORPIO RISING
The career splash continues, as Leo season elevates you to your deserved throne in the public eye. You’ve been focused on releasing yourself from outdated standards of success. Now, you get to flirt with a new vision, based on new terms: Who does your work serve? How does it refill your cup? What is your core, unbreakable ethos, which brings you back to yourself no matter how far you go? Write your nonnegotiables and new rules into law, so that your rule may be long, just, and prosperous. Your challenge this month is to trust yourself, even as the swings get bigger.
SAGITTARIUS & SAGITTARIUS RISING
July offered you a chance to step out of your world, whether by traveling the world or cruising your inner landscape. Now, you’re ready to synthesize what you’ve learned, and act decisively as the sum of your experiences. By Aug. 12, you’ll have the two planets of action — Mercury and Mars — in Virgo, in your 10th house of career and public roles. Now is the time to execute, lay out big plans, and take all the necessary steps for a successful campaign of conquest. Integrate your spiritual connection and rituals into your decision making process, and condition yourself to moving firmly, but calmly. The leader of the movement must never act in haste.
CAPRICORN & CAPRICORN RISING
Is this your flop era? Does the sudden stall in your creative output and self-confidence spell certain doom? Snap out of it! While you may feel like you’re disappearing, you’re being seen in bigger ways than ever by the people around you — especially if you’re not aware of it. Pay attention to team-ups, group efforts, and larger communal institutions where you can act as part of a bigger whole. Even though you were born to command, you’ll have to go in drag as one of the people, like Princess Jasmine hitting the marketplace. Who knows what you’ll discover on the street level?
AQUARIUS & AQUARIUS RISING
Consider this an ellipsis, not an ending. Uranus, your ruler, the planet of progress, goes retrograde on Aug. 17, initiating a pause and a review of the systems of support you’ve erected around you. We’re halfway through the year to Aquarius season, and after a tempestuous 2021 full of rapid expansion, you have a chance to observe how far you’ve come — and ensure that the changes stick. While the bigger “you” continues its reboot, embrace any partnerships and collaborations which give you a sense of pleasure, purpose, and grounding in your two feet. Now is not the time to go it alone.
PISCES & PISCES RISING
Make whatever choices you can to feel embodied. Focus on the little details of your self-presentation: Go big on new nails, buy stickers to embellish your diary, and put an Italian thong on the credit card. Invest in the tangible and sensual as bindings to the real world — ensuring your return from any black holes of nihilism or self-doubt. Lovers and close friends may do the job as well, acting as guardians, champions, or stalwarts. Count on those closest to you for adventure and physicality, but don’t treat them as saviors. It’s up to you to stay rooted.