When I started writing an astrology column in 2014, the United States was breaking out in protests over the killing of Michael Brown by Ferguson police officer Darren Wilson, and the subsequent failure to indict Wilson by a grand jury. At that time, I chose to write about the systemic state-sanctioned violence faced by Black and marginalized people in the U.S., and ultimately wound up having to leave the publication I worked for on account of that choice. It is my deepest belief that no content created for mass consumption can ever be neutral, and that includes astrology — which was developed into its most widely known form in service to empires to sustain them through feast, famine, and war.
Antiquity aside, astrology, which is so prevalent in the “healing” industry today, was also favored by corrupt and criminal leaders. In a globalized world, in a country that is so often removed from the wars it wages on foreign land, the choice to look away and disconnect is part of our upbringing. It is not, however, a choice on offer to non-white people in America and certainly not to Black people who are routinely put in the position to prove their humanity. Who are, at this very moment, up against a militarized police force and armed guard in their cities, whether they are peacefully protesting, angrily mourning, or offering support and care to those who are — all actions that are their protected right by law — following the brutal murders of Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery, George Floyd, and Tony McDade.
As an astrology writer but, also, as a white woman, I refuse my upbringing which, despite being immigrant, Jewish refugee, and queer, is steeped in the racism of a nation whose idea of freedom has always relied on the subjugation of people not deemed human enough to deserve that very freedom. The astrology of this contemporary moment has been explored thrice over, especially following the conjunction of Pluto and Saturn in Capricorn in January, the planet of transformation up against the planet of reckoning in the sign of authority and administration. The fact that Saturn has been retrograde in Aquarius, the sign of collective power and revolutionary thought, sustains the unrest of that January conjunction and fuels it with ongoing internet-based organizing (mutual aid funds and bail funds).
With Uranus, planet of upheaval and rebellion, firmly in the sign of Taurus, earthly attachments and resources, the chances of world-wide uprisings against corrupt systems of power were already high. When paired with a pandemic raging (also Pluto) through the United States due to our country’s lack of preparedness and disregard for working people, what we find is waves of dissenters who are willing to risk (Jupiter) pandemic exposure for a transformed world (Pluto) that will be in service to their ideals (Jupiter in Capricorn). The fact that this is all happening during Venus retrograde, a time when what we value and how we express our values is brought into question, is not minor. Neither is the fact that Venus retrograde, as a transit, has traditionally also been brought up as a portent of war. To be clear, I don’t mean protests in favor of ignoring the pandemic in favor of modern comforts and at the cost of marginalized people’s lives. I mean protests that demand protection for Black people’s lives. To love something is to nurture it and protect it; to value true love is to stand against those who wish to sell you a conditional kind. In these horoscopes, alongside your personal ruminations and mundane concerns, I hope you hold these words of poet laureate Gwendolyn Brooks with you: “We are each other’s business; we are each other’s magnitude and bond.”
For many people around the world, the prospect of more quarantine with no end in sight evokes dread, depression, and distraction. But, for many Aries out there, in accordance with their own circumstance, the month ahead promises to be fruitful. To bear fruit, to witness its process of ripening, can be an act of patience — of humbleness — which is, of course, not what most Aries are known for. Fruit, in this case, is not necessarily abundance. Fruit is the culminating form of an idea that, once sparked in the mind, wants to grow. Fruit is the energy of the world, contained so long it has no choice but to gather and create new form.
While Aries might be quick to act, they take their time when it comes to their dreams and ideas. Fueled by the full moon lunar eclipse that occurs the first week of June, you are likely to feel a small fire in your own heart growing, and the more air you give it, the bigger it will be.
Sagittarius is a fire sign, like yours, but Sagittarian fire travels through the air — a burning arrow — that means to mark a destination or deliver a very powerful message. In a world that is not yet post-COVID, in a world that is rapidly changing its relationship to institutions and ways of thinking about humanity, you are charged with the task of taking what you know about revolutionary hope and sharing it with those whose imaginations are more limited than yours. Just make sure that what you bring to the streets and to your work is also what you bring to your loved ones. Fire destroys, but it can also cleanse and forge. Forge whenever you can.
Transformation is a word you might be feeling done with these days, but you and I both know it’s not done with you. Of course, so much of being alive is geared toward constant, if not imperceptible change. The earth, after all, never stops spinning and never stops its gravitational force, which is, simply put, attraction. What you attract, what you are attracted to, is not only circumstance but also a part of your very being. As you take on new ways of being, what you attract changes.
I write to you of attraction loosely so that you might bend it to your will. With your ruling planet, Venus, retrograde in Gemini — a sign that is interested in connection through shared language and creative pursuits — you are likely reevaluating what and who you want gravitating toward you. Which means you’re also evaluating the signals you yourself put out.
If you have been doing the hard work alone for a long time, on purpose or by circumstances that are beyond your control, think of that aloneness as a signal, too. All states of being are a signal, creative energy wants to pour from one container into other, and love is like that, too. If you want something different, it’s no longer enough to envision it or even seek it out in another. You’ve got to become what you want so that when it wants you back, you’ll know it’s real.
Sweet Gemini friend, I know that May has not been easy for you and I know June makes no promises. Whether your birthday has recently passed or you have yet to feel that special closing of a solar cycle, it’s worth noting that even if there’s no party to mark the year gone by, you don’t need a celebration to know just how much of an impact the year has had on you. Which doesn’t mean you don’t deserve one. If you’re up for it, you can imagine this upcoming eclipse cycle as your birthday disco ball. A mirrored ball of light that spins and spins its reflections in your honor over the true node of Gemini and the south node of Sagittarius.
If you consider the moon, you just might see your image fractured into all the people you were ready to become and who, by sheer will if not by sorrow, you have chosen to become instead.
Emotions run strong this month; who hasn’t been tempted to cry at their own reflection, to marvel at how wet and human they can be? Venus retrograde in Gemini, at its most wounded, is a transit not unlike a charmed looking glass that threatens to exaggerate what we fear is the worst of ourselves. Worthwhile to remember that Venus favors those who seek her favor. Venus loves harmony and serves to protect the integral beauty of living things. Start inside yourself. Are there ways that you want to be physically and emotionally in the world that are opposite of how you behave? What old beliefs and rituals would need to shift so that your days and hours reflect the person you want to be? What would it take for you to look at yourself, the moon, the mirror, and see your own desire looking back?
June, it seems, is the month you get your home affairs in order. Whether you’re in the process of moving or reimagining what “home” must be for it to feel like “home” to you, June invites you to regard the process you are in with care and intention. You are, by nature, a person with deep attachment to the environments you claim and build. These attachments are relationships and they necessitate mourning when they transform or end. If you are overcome by feelings of dread and disorientation, it will valuable for you to locate where those feeling stem and how they can be honored.
We are, collectively, subject to anxiety and fear produced by a country in crisis in more ways than one. If you live at the intersection of these states of precarity, you live at the intersection of threat and grief.
It is not easy to honor what we feel — it is a life-long skill development. We are taught early to suppress or to react, rarely to hold and observe. But holding and observing what runs through you this month is imperative because you have work to do, Cancer; you have shit to figure out. Mercury is retrograde in your sign by June 18 and whatever shadow of missteps and miscommunications (born of emotional unrest) that has already graced you will only loom larger. The best defense, then, is to know exactly what you mean and why you mean it and where it comes from. That way, when the lunar (June 5) and solar (June 21) eclipses start having their way with you, and old feelings start bubbling to the surface, you’ll be prepared to catch them and hold them to the light of all you know. Peaceful warrior, you are never unprepared in a crisis. Try to remember that when you start to fear what lies ahead.
You’ve always known your role, Leo. Dignified, you’ve shown up, shown out, and secured the perimeter so that all who travel with you travel knowing they will not be led astray. Still, there are months, maybe even years, when anyone — no matter how confident — can get a little lost in the fray. You’re allowed confusion. You’re allowed rest and reconnaissance. You’re allowed these things because a movement, heck, a family, is only as strong as its members. The sign of a good leader, a good team member, a good friend, is someone who admits when they are out of their element and in doing so creates space for their collaborators to step into their own power.
For you, Leo, June will be a month detangling and mending, a month of figuring out just what you can and want to offer to the world around you.
Your offering, going forward, can no longer be from a place of overextension. It will not serve you or your close ones for you to waste your energy protecting people from themselves. You want the freedom to make your own mistakes and dig your own way out; the people in your life deserved the same level of complexity, the people you love have just as much right to face the consequences of their actions. I remind you all this because this is where you keep taking detours. This is where you lose sight of your role in the world, trying to force that role into someone’s life instead. Pull back and pan out, Leo. You are a creative powerhouse and a quiet champion. Your efforts and your gifts are tools. Apply them where they are needed.
For many star babes especially affected by Venus retrograde this month (Venus-ruled signs but also mutable and Mercury-ruled signs), contradictions will be on the rise between what people feel and how people express those emotions. There will be, for many of us, an incongruence. Because Venus is associated with our relationships and what we offer others in exchange for attention and devotion, this incongruence makes itself known between couples, collaborators, and sometimes even siblings. It might look like one person in a relationship feeling uncared for by the other while communicating in way that signals a desire to take care of themselves.
With Mercury stationing retrograde in Cancer mid-month, making sure that your signals are communicating what you want them to is key. Unfortunately, it requires taking responsibility for what you want, which can be hard on a sign that prides itself on taking responsibility for other people’s wants instead.
While it’s likely you’ll find yourself in the thick of these relationship tensions, it’s just as likely that you will experience this sort of dissonance mostly within yourself. In that case, June offers time to reflect (Mercury Rx in Cancer!) on the many ways your life and values have detoured and diverted from what you were raised to aspire to. This is a great time to take credit for the choices you’ve made and take note of the work you’ve done to cultivate parts of yourself that were not tended from birth. Your roots inform your work, but they don’t shape who you become. You do that.
Just like Taurus, the Zodiac’s other Venus-ruled sign, it’s likely that June will be a transformative month for you, dear Libra. Venus retrograde, poised to pose emotional conflicts for many, offers you the chance to refine your belief systems instead. Venus, planet of love, asks you to reckon with your devotional practices, asks you who you pray to — if anything/one — and where the energy of those prayers leads you. These questions are not interested in religion, although they don’t exclude it. Rather, they are interested in the energy behind your actions, your core beliefs and philosophies, and how they are enacted or compromised.
What you believe, what you feel, and what you do with it: in an ideal world, these aspects of your personhood are in compatible flow. But, you don’t live in an ideal world, and to shame yourself for your very human reactions is to stand in the way of learning from them.
Lessons, if you’re alive, they aren’t done — and there’s grace in that, luck even. Speaking of lessons, it is known that eclipses are nothing to be trifled with, and June ushers in both a lunar and solar eclipse in Gemini and Cancer, respectively. While the first might give you a great deal of clarity on whatever has been holding you back from acting in a way that feels good and right for you, the second is likely to bring up insecurities around your own ability to comprehend, process, and effectively relay information to others, especially when it comes to your own meaning. Be kind to yourself Libra, but be firm, too. Don’t give up when you’re getting started.
You know that old saying, “Time is money”? If you don’t, then this month will surely teach it to you. Scorpios might be known for playing the long game, but for a while now, your long game hasn’t exactly matched up with the reality of your calendar — or your finances, for that matter. Your relationship to your resources is changing, however, and luck has nothing to do with it. You are entirely responsible for your change in circumstance, and that’s a good thing, even if it doesn’t feel very good right now. You are finding yourself on the other side of an intentional choice to preserve your strength and let go of whatever diminishes it. Even if that means choosing the unfamiliar, even if it means starting over.
To transform your relationship to the people and projects you tie your most potent and powerful energy to is to transform your relationship to scarcity and to conditional self-love.
If that seems like a lot to take on, that’s because it is. You don’t have to do it all at once, even if doing it all at once is the only way to have it feel “real” for you. Scorpio, it doesn’t need to feel “real” for it to be real; life doesn’t just exist at the extremes. Besides, haven’t these past few months been extreme enough on their own? You can take it slow, start assessing what you’ve got and how you’re going to use it to attract what you want. If you fear making vows lest you must break them, remind yourself that a plan is not a contract. It’s a living map of your time.
I know you like to keep your expectations low and your commitment flexible, but let me tell you, Sagittarius, there’s just no way you’re getting through June without a big date with a heavenly body. Sounds hot, right? Well, maybe it is. Depends on the heavenly body. You know very well that eclipses are powerful; even outside the world of astrology, they have a big reputation. Astronomers and common folk alike strive to catch a glimpse of Earth’s shadow on the moon and the moon’s shadow on the Earth — the simplest and most potent impact of which is highlighting our own position in space.
A different angle to an intimate relation gives us a fuller view of ourselves. This month’s eclipses, on the nodes of Sagittarius and Gemini, are all about that very process for you.
This is not to say that this month is all about figuring out what exactly you mean to someone else or what someone means to you, or even what your place is in a family/movement. Although, there will be much work to be done there. Rather, June offers you the opportunity to sit with how you feel about yourself and how that self-regard shapes your ability to be your most full and powerful self around others in times of emotional difficulty. If your behaviors, especially your private behaviors, are in direct conflict with your desires and your values, this is a good time to assess how many of those behaviors are part of an old operating system within you. How committed are you to that system, and what keeps you from updating it? What would happen if you gave your future self the override code now?
If you’re scared right now, that's OK. If you’re worried, if your fears and your attachments are in direct conflict with the way you act and approach the world, you’re not alone. This is a completely new social experience, and few (if any) of us have a road map for how to navigate it. A devoted member of your community, a caregiver, and an ardent contributor, you want to be where the people are. You want to show up and be of use, whether that relates to the protests raging against injustice or the people near you who are suffering from pandemic-related losses. I’m betting in whatever way is humanly possible for you, you have shown up with your heart in the right place.
Still, being a Capricorn is so much about feeling like you could be doing more. Feeling like whatever you have done is not enough — even when the stakes are impossibly high, even when there’s no bar to reach for, no final feeling of relief.
Capricorn, if you feel like there are forces preventing you from giving it your all, that may very well be the case. Perhaps, then, it’s on you to amend your definition of your “all” with some clauses respective of your own well-being. Nobody wants to send out their best fighters on their off days, and you, Capricorn, are one of the best. Instead of dragging yourself over the coals for what you can’t do, focus on what makes you feel of use in moments like these. Isn’t there a network of people you’ve been meaning to connect? Isn’t there a project you’ve been dreaming of that would be of great value to the cause? What’s ahead of us now is more a marathon, less a race. Besides, you’d do just as much good at the finishing line with water and sustenance.
It’s not that you’re not passionate about your community — you are. Or, as passionate as you allow yourself to be in public, which is a negotiation to be sure. Still, June might find you questioning where and with whom you cast your lot. 2020 has been intent on working you over, from your daily life to your dream space, and you’ve complied for the most part, changing jobs and taking your visions seriously. It’s true that the company you keep has been steadily changing, shifting away from false intimacies and toward true affinity. In the wake of all that shifting, and on the heels of one national crisis overlaying another, it might serve you to remember that you are the kind of person who thrives in the company of other passionate, generative, people and you don’t need to change alliances to experience that energy.
You’re a connector, a go-between — you always have been. Why is it, then, that you have spent so much of your time devoted to either one type of crowd/person or no one at all?
Quarantine and the pandemic surely have something to do with it. There’s no Aquarius I know that hasn’t lamented their inability to spend intimate time with their various friend groups. Yet, as the world erupts in protests, as injustice after injustice is waged against an already struggling population, it seems harder and harder keep oneself to oneself. Or to be one way with one person. This month, both the eclipses and Venus Rx encourage you to figure out if there is another way to express yourself, another way to devote yourself to what you value most. If passion is what you want to be around, how do you mean to attract it?
Gil Scott-Heron said the revolution will not be televised in 1974, but he didn’t live in an era saturated by social media and recording-as-counter-police-tactic. The revolution is not and has not been televised, but what we see now, from civilians and free press, is enough to get us mobilized. Mobilized can be a difficult state, of course. So many radical people out there mobilized in their spirit but not necessarily able to mobilize on the ground. A mobilized spirit, let it be known, can do powerful work from a great distance. And, there is work to be done.
Pisces, this is the kind of environment you were made to swim through. If not as a fearless compatriot, then as a healer, a connector, an ever-vigilant presence with an ear to the ground and an eye to the heavens.
You might be tempted to go above and beyond for your close ones, so, as ever, be mindful of agreeing to anything that puts your health at risk. That includes, but isn’t limited to, your mental health. Not all invitations are worth your energy. Not everyone has your best interests at heart. The work you want to do in the world will keep shifting in relationship to your experience of the world. If you feel like your relationship to your public face is changing, if you no longer connect with what you have struggled to achieve, do not count it as a failure. Change is organic to anything alive, and if your dreams are alive, then they are bound to change. Take this feeling and give it room to grow, to fill your heart and speak to you in a language you can understand.