If you are reading this, then Halloween is firmly behind us, but rest uneasy — our Spooky Season carries on! The fabric that separates the world of the living from the world of the dead, the veil, is thin long past the night when plastic pumpkin baskets bob down your street growing heavier and heavier with snickers mini-bars. Mercury Retrograde, unholiest of times, is upon is, and, stationed in Scorpio, it really does mean business. It's a good time for making amends and tying up loose ends, or loose people—consensually, of course. Our moon is full in Taurus on the 12th and is yet another chance to tend to your altars and make offerings to your guides. They are, apparently, listening.
Meanwhile, Mars languishes in Libra for half the month, refusing to make any sudden moves in case someone gets their feelings hurt, which is good since Mercury Rx hates sudden moves anyway. Thankfully, Venus moves over into Sagittarius which is, what I would like to call, a chaotic good transit. It's flirty, it's full of jokes, it isn't planning on calling you back anytime soon, so please, have some dignity. The new moon in Sagittarius that closes this month promises to add some fuel to that fire or, conversely, find you in bed alone reading 10 self-help books in the order they were recommended.
By the end of November, Venus finds itself in Capricorn and Mars in Scorpio, which sounds a lot like two tops trying to see which one will flip first. Or, like stress-induced holiday gift-shopping. For now, we have the crisp air of autumn and dead leaf smell of impeachment; hopefully, that is enough to get us through.
A tiger can't change its stripes, and an Aries can't all of a sudden become a creature un-swayed by their impulses. That said, these past few months have probably offered you quite a few lessons on learning to weigh your options and waiting to see what the other side has to offer. Like your cardinal brethren, Libra, Capricorn, and Cancer, you have had to grapple with Saturn's heavy hand these past few months. There's been a heightened focus on the relationship you are maintaining between your sense of self, your public image, and your partnerships. On some level, this past year has emphasized the balance beam that holds independence on one side and inter-dependence on the other; how life is a constant negotiation between our singular sense of reality and our desire to experience companionship. Of course, such negotiations are never easy, but it has been fruitful, hasn't it Aries?
There's a you who existed 10 years ago, or even four, who thought the picture she was looking at was clear. You can't blame her for the choices she made then, not knowing what you know now. If a younger you were here, she would tell you that regret and resentment are a waste of your fire — she would tell you that digging a hole for yourself is a waste of your precious energy.
Now, more than ever, the details of your life are coming into sharper focus: the machinery that runs between the "I" you want to share with the world, the "I" you allow loved ones to see, and the "I" you protect yourself from knowing. It's up to you what you do with what you know, but, as your ruling planet moves into Scorpio this month, your drive to feel an integration between all your selves might prove very powerful. In the wake of that desire, it might serve you well to remember that an epic journey begins with a challenge and promises rewards beyond measure.
All animals love a full moon, don't they? A bright night and a wide field. Lucky for you, the moon will be full under the stars of Taurus this month, shining a little extra light onto you in all that early winter darkness. Better still, your ruling planet Venus moves into Sagittarius right as November begins. And, while you're not necessarily a fan of fast-paced anything, Venus thrives under the stars of Sagittarius. Venus transiting through Sagittarius is flirty, communicative, here for a good time and not a long time. She wants to touch aliveness, to experience the unexperienced, to arrive believing one thing and leave having learned an entirely different way. What I'm saying is Venus in Sagittarius is open to the unknown, and you, my dear Taurus, stand to benefit from that kind of mindset this month.
A little mutable energy can go a long way when the moon is full in Taurus and the Sun is set in Scorpio. The opposition of these two fixed signs is palpable, and it's got everything to do with letting go. In your case, Taurus, letting go has less to do with what's around you and a whole lot more to do with what you believe about yourself.
It can be hard, when you're born stubborn, to accept that you don't know everything about yourself or what you're capable of. And, it can be painful to hold the truth of your circumstance against the sharp edge of your expectations. Have you wasted a great deal of your energy, dear Taurus, puzzling over why you just can't seem to achieve what you thought you would by now? Has it ever occurred to you that what hasn't been attained wasn't meant to be? That, perhaps, despite all firmly held beliefs to the contrary, the universe has contrived to surprise you with something better than you imagined? The only way to make space for what is unknown is to let go of old ideas. Don't your possibilities have a right to change as much as you have?
All work and no play makes Gemini feel, well, not like a Gemini at all! And, it's true that while you've definitely had your share of erotic exploration in the past couple months, your primary focus has necessarily been geared towards re-evaluating your material resources and your personal ethics. Whether this had to do with the dissolving of a romantic bond, leaving an old job, moving into a new home, or a general lifestyle makeover, you have been making some big shifts — and big shifts require energy.
It's no surprise, then, that you might be feeling a little rundown or far from pleasure. Change is exciting but also draining and dysregulating! And, sometimes, the only way our bodies/minds know how to deal with that kind of upset is to lean into something familiar. Would you believe that anxiety, insomnia, or emotionally flattened states of being are mechanisms our bodies manifest to keep us safe? Wild what we learn to survive! Wild what we have to unlearn to get beyond surviving!
Listen, it's okay to feel everything you're feeling. It's more than okay, actually, it's important. If you're tired, that's information about your energetic limits. If you're lonely, your yearning is showing you something about your heart and what it requires to thrive. All of it is yours, not something that is happening to you but something that is a part of you/your body's messaging system. This month will give you lots of opportunities to experience sweetness, connection, even romance. Try your best to ferry whatever you revel in back to the well within yourself, replenish your spirit whenever you can because that is the best you can do. The path that you have embarked is long and arduous, but it is worth it.
One of the hardest things about personal change is that it's, well, personal. You can confide in whomever you want, you can share the details of your journey and recommend what inspires you to those who ask, but, at the end of the day, only you can truly gage just what has transpired within you and its value. That said, while our healing journeys are our own, we don't have to feel alone on our path. In fact, it is almost always true that we are not alone, no matter how much it might feel like we are. To step back from the humanness of it all, it is no small matter that you pass the same trees every day, are visited by the same birds, and fall asleep looking for the same moon. If you are reading this, you are someone who wants to believe that the universe conspires with us, is alive with us, and your seeking will find you rich with proof.
Yet, our humanness is not without grace, and to move forward through this world imagining you are unaccompanied by other people would be a mistake. Our relationships are what make us who we are. They are the sinew of our lives, tethering the muscles of love within us to the bones of our history.
From our longest commitments to our smallest interactions, our deli counter exchanges and our crossing guards, our exchanges have the power to give us great lessons — if we're open to them. Your change in mindset, routine, and beliefs is being reflected in your relationships, and, in getting closer with yourself, you've gotten closer to building intimacy in ways you weren't ready to before. All around you are teachers. All around you are future co-conspirators. The more you reach out toward the world you want to be a part of, the more it will reach back.
It's true that we're not our jobs or our occupations. Life is more than where we get our means to live, and it's certainly not what gives us a reason to. That said, unless one is born with wealth — and even then — what we do with our days does make up our lives. On some level, you know this deeply. It's why you often wake up yearning to stretch out beyond your known limits, like the sun rising and touching new landscapes. Yet as daylight grows shorter, and your hours fill up with the minutiae of ordinary things, the temptation to treat your life can take over.
There's nothing wrong with routine, in fact, a healthy routine is a sure-fire way to keep your mental health in check. What's important is recognizing the moments when routine turns rote. Or, when you're going through the motions of life rather than being an active participant in it.
Here, the stars conspire to push you toward a deeper sense of agency, of understanding how your daily choices line up to become your years. October has been sweet on you, and November promises to be even more so, with lots of opportunities to experience new pleasures. These moments of sweetness come along as brightness on a road that is difficult. A road between your deepest sense of self and what role you give that self in your daily life. This is a road between your physical body and your spirit — how injury to one takes toll on the other. Revel in the beauty that finds you on your path, dear one, but don't mistake the gifts along the way for the journey itself.
Every day, in big ways and in small ones, we are called to choose between what brings us singular pleasure and what we believe we owe to the collective dream. Our visions of the future often stand in direction tension with our intimate choices. Do I buy new clothes because hand-me-downs remind me of growing up poor or do I shop at a local re-sale store because clothing production is an ecological disaster? Do I take this job that offers great benefits and feeds into a 401k or do I turn it down because it means contributing my energy to an institution that backs white supremacy? Do I build a friendship with this person if this person has beliefs that are opposed to mine?
Our needs and beliefs exist on a spectrum which proves time and time again that human beings are complicated — and our truths even more so. Few of us can stand with our shoulders square and proudly proclaim that we are without hypocrisy or compromise.
Why is it, then, that while we move through our own lives, gently excusing ourselves for making choices that benefit us and ultimately harm someone (even someone we never see), we find it hard to offer that same amount of grace to others? What about our own needs for validation and self-assurance obscures our ability to see the complexity in others — their right to choose their own ethos, their private hierarchy of needs? The answers to these questions will take you a long way, dear Virgo, and the quest to find them has been yours at least since Saturn moved into Capricorn last year. This month, how you communicate your truth to others (Mercury in Scorpio Rx!) can make all the difference between healing and more harm, so raise your collective vision up as high as you can. How much are you willing to shift your singular pleasure in service to that vision?
It's not easy for a Libra to ask for what they want. I mean, first of all, they would have to figure out what they want! I'm not talking about the casual this meal vs. that meal indecision people joke about (although many a Libra have crumbled before a menu which offers too many variations on an elderberry infusion). I'm talking about the difficulty of choosing to claim one's own desires and pleasures over the comfort and expectations of others. Libra has a natural tendency to try to anticipate the needs of those they care for, and it takes a great deal of intention for them to turn that tendency toward themselves.
Any Libra, even one who is mostly some other sign, would do well to remember that, just like our expectations and needs change all the time and are sometimes counter to our habits, what they know about what others think/want/feel is mostly a story and rarely the whole one.
In this vein and while Venus, Libra's ruling planet, transits through Sagittarius this month, November invites you to envision what your days and interactions would look like if they were structured entirely around what make you feel good. Mars in Libra is circuitous and diplomatic, but having Mars energy in your house making aspects to Venus and Jupiter can give your desires the backing they need to come to fruition. So, hone in on your desires with intentional, and don't be too surprised when the offerings arrive as if on cue. Recognize that your material wants and needs, while easier to name, are in direct relation with your deeper hungers. Ask and you shall receive, dear Libra, and I know I don't even have to say it — but ask wisely.
One thing that people don't talk about nearly enough is the fact that Scorpio loves change. Probably because the kind of change Scorpio yearns for is not the kind of change most people are easily capable of participating in. Scorpio is a fixed sign and, like Taurus, Scorpio plays the long game. They revel in witnessing a transformation, that kind that takes time, commitment, and stamina. While it's not uncommon to hear that Scorpios make good lovers, it's important to note that this attribution has less to do with what some might call "sexiness" and more to do with the personal pleasure Scorpio finds in digging deep and seeing what comes up. Investigation leads to revelation, and when it comes to sex, that often spells a good time.
Often doesn't mean always, we know, and sometimes digging deep can unearth things that feel too difficult to reckon with. When it comes to your relationships with others, Scorpio, time has taught you to mind where you dig and be gentle with what you find. But, when it comes to your relationship with yourself, rules of tenderness have often proved much harder to apply.
Truth is, Scorpio's exacting sting and quiet smolder is most often expressed on themselves, and when you feel like your body or your heart is betraying you, it's not unlikely that your first instinct is to shut down or punish yourself. This November, with the full moon in Taurus, choosing to play the long game with yourself will feel less like a burden and more like a sacred mission. You are many things, Scorpio, but you are also a human with a human body, heart, hormones, brain chemistry, and all. Changes comes slowly, you know that; to notice it, you've got to pay ardent and arduous attention.
Value systems are complicated. Inherently, they encouraged us to create hierarchies and allot worth. For many people out there, sentient beings do not exist on a level playing field: human life vs. animal life vs. plant life vs. aquatic life. Often, these oppositions are posed in circumstances that push the bar of logic. For instance, many conventional meat-eaters will create a human vs. animal justification for their diet with everything from "it's us vs. them," to "we evolved to eat them because that is what our species requires to survive," to "all living things do it, why shouldn't we?" The merit of these arguments aside, their failure to grapple with the implication of what it means for one being's existence to have more value than another is evident. In fact, many of these arguments posit that human pleasure has more value than our ecological preservation. Take the use of fossil fuels. The hunting of wolves.
The known narrative of freedom and desire is given precedence over sentience that is outside human language. We inherit these value systems, knowingly and unknowingly, and it is no surprise that we find them woven into the fabric of what we imagine to be our personal beliefs.
Here is where it gets tricky. When we allow systems without empathy or accountability toward all living things to thrive within us, we find that our ability to have empathy and accountability for ourselves weakens. As all living things are interconnected so, too, are the parts of us that are productive, tired, creative, wounded, verbal, non-verbal, selfish, loving, magical, and wild. When you find yourself wondering if anything you do matters, when you find yourself questioning your productivity, your value, tune in to which value systems you are letting analyze the worth of existence. What's wild within you wants freedom just as badly as the social parts of you want the pleasure of belonging to an establishment. And, deserves it.
Wow, could it be possible that our sense of self directly impacts our ability to build strong and healthy boundaries with other people? Sounds fake but okay. Just kidding, it's really really real! Now, I know that there are PEOPLE out there who think Capricorns are tough cookies with the horns and the ability to, like, also exist underwater (what's going on?), but you and I both know that Capricorns are gentle creatures filled with yearning. Capricorns will climb up and around a mountain for you, fetch you a single twig of the finest berries if it earns them your respect and gratitude. The only hitch is, they have to respect you first, and, if you ever lose their respect, they have no problem demanding the fine twig of berries back even if you already ate them.
Respect, how it is earned, kept, and given, is a theme here, dear Capricorn. And, boundaries play an important role in your ability to not only connect with others but to recognize when those connections are rooted in respect that is mutual. And, conversely, to recognize when your connections lack the reciprocity necessary to grow alongside each other.
If, in order to be somewhere, or with someone, you have to betray yourself, it's not where you are meant to be. Boundaries aren't fun because they can make people angry, but boundaries create space for fun the flourish, I promise. Besides, one sure-fire way to test whether or not a boundary is necessary is to see how much push back you get when you maintain yours. That's right, Capricorn, maintain. Respect is earned, after all, and no one respects a rule without consequence. Your boundaries aren't just for other people, they deepen your commitment to being honest and authentic with yourself. With them, you might find that networking is great, but community is better. Quick or checked-out sex can hit the spot, but two people, present and attentive to each other, is better. Assimilating to your context and attuning to everyone else works, but prioritizing your need to feel engaged and alive is better.
It's only a contradiction to want affection and independence if you believe that the two exist without relation to each other. But, I know you are a lot smarter than that. I know that you are the kind of person who cherishes moments of intimacy, closeness, and care just as deeply as you cherish your solitude and your lone adventures. In romantic relationships, there are blueprints for this — the life of Georgia O'Keeffe for instance, wayward Nuns, Octavia Butler, Stevie Nicks, bears who hibernate alone.
But, familial expectations have their own unique weight, and there are few families out there that value a member's presence just as much as they do that member's absence or, better yet, strides to break as many inherited patterns as possible.
Now, "family" is a loaded word, and it's best to approach it with the understanding that we are capable of many different types of families, blood-ties, kinships, and collectives. Whether your family is a gaggle of old lovers, your two children, or your single grandmother, they are all witness to the transformative state of your being. Transformation isn't easy for the one who is transformed, but it's no cakewalk for those who love them either. Which is not to say that it's your job to take care of everyone and everything. Rather, I encourage you to embrace the moments when, returning from your solitary state, your requests for closeness are met with confusion. These moments are opportunities for you to share the fruits of your solitude with those who care about you.
I know you can feel it coming, Neptune's transit stationing direct in your house. For too long, Neptune has been retrograde, and I'm sure, amongst other things, your intuition has suffered. Or if not suffered then strained where it might otherwise have flown through you, crystal visions you did and did not keep to yourself. While Neptune stationing direct is a small blessing, the retrograde shadow is long and foreboding. With this in mind, it's good to remember that a fish in a body of water is born with the ability to read and respond to its current. Salmon swims upstream because it knows it must, and you, tender Pisces, have your own pleasure principles to attend to.
More than romantic, what is erotic is creative, alive, and ever-changing. It finds you in the pages of books, the bark of trees, and eruptions of laughter. Pisces, your guides are with you even when you feel lost or your vision gets cloudy — especially then — because they come to you through your connection to the world around you.
That's why, this month, it is of utmost importance that you pay special attention to the kinship systems you maintain, the people you call your siblings, and the friends that feel like siblings all the same. Here, there is an opportunity to see who you are reflected in those you feel deepest affinity with. Here, there are possibilities for healing old wounds that are rooted in feeling outside connection and misunderstood. Your kin carry a record of your history because it is also their history, and when you forget yourself, they will remember you. Okay, I'll write it, get ready, your school is your school. You choose each other because, together, you move powerfully toward a shared destination.