21 October 2016 UnReal

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Georges Seurat, 1891 {{PD}}

Georges Seurat, 1891 {{PD}}

The AstroEssence: Unreality, distortion, the imagined, the deceptive all permeate thinking, reasoning, and perception today–and yet, we’ll know something’s amiss, we’ll sense the fun-house version of reality we’re receiving, filtered through minds that are confused about the difference between fact and fiction. This may distract us from more conventionally productive efforts, but could also supply some amazing inspiration or a deeply moving spiritual experience (aside from that one we have all the time, of course) (Mercury sesquiquadrate and parallel Neptune, Sun semi-sq Saturn)

Piggy bank from German bank HASPA, around 1970. Photo by GeorgHH {{PD}}

Piggy bank from German bank HASPA, around 1970. Photo by GeorgHH {{PD}}

Today’s word image is a child’s piggy bank, from which the coins can only be extracted once it’s been shattered.  What ‘treasure’, resource, talent, positive have you been storing away, saving up, hoarding, or accumulating that you now would be wise to access, even if it takes a ‘shattering’ change? It’s time.

For those born with the Sun at 28 Libra: You may be too concerned this coming year with the idea of ‘fate’, as if your free Will could be overpowered at any moment by the pre-planned, the Destined, or the inescapable. It would be a mistake to believe this, but the mere existence of the idea may cause you to react passively to challenges and obstacles. Though it’s true a proactive stance won’t really bring you what you want at this time, neither will complete abdication of Self-responsibility. You’ll need to compromise your expression, thinking of progress in terms of building blocks rather than sweeping accomplishments; but it is the time to frame goals for the future, and to dream so that you can incorporate your most inspired desires in your real-life direction. Good luck, Libra, and Happy Birthday!

20 October 2016 Doors And Walls

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By HaguardDuNord - Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=26224080

By HaguardDuNord – Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=26224080

The AstroEssence: We put up walls against what amounts to the Truth; it will come at us in a great many forms that we don’t immediately recognize as vehicles for enlightenment. We resist for the simple fact that we have likely stumbled upon a door within those Self-fashioned walls that is a little bit of genius, but we hesitate to go through it; we are somehow fixed on not being our most original Self–and that’s not to mention the aversion to recognizing our own authority and power to affect things. This negative Self-view stems from the feeling lately that reality is harsh; if you can’t face making the most of that bit of genius, that tremendously productive and profitable idea, or that beckoning relationship, then tuck it away for later, when you don’t feel like you’ve just been sucker-punched by the world (Saturn sesq Ceres, Mercury nov Venus, contra-parallel Uranus and Sedna, also opposed Uranus, Sun opp Ceres)

See? They need their horns. By Flickr user James Temple - http://www.flickr.com/photos/jamestemple/312326185/, CC BY 2.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=1667679

See? They need their horns. By Flickr user James Temple – http://www.flickr.com/photos/jamestemple/312326185/, CC BY 2.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=1667679

Today’s word image is a rhinoceros that’s missing his horn. This is an item of helpful Self-defense when meeting others of the same kind, or even would-be predators. We know that in some cultures the horn is powdered and prized as medicine, but is there ever any excuse for such a blatantly cruel act? I think not. Watch your surroundings for someone who seems formidable, but who may have had their best defense ripped away from them, and so may need your understanding more than your challenge or your criticism.

For those born with the Sun at 27 Libra: ‘Fate’ is speaking to you via the career, this year through to your next birthday. How will you respond? The temptation may be to go straight for the power, but you may do much better to take your time and negotiate–doing so will bring you much more than you would’ve been able to simply command as your own. Good luck, Libra, and Happy Birthday!

19 October 2016 Small Comfort

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The AstroEssence: I’m sure conventional wisdom says we should all be focused on the Mars-Pluto conjunction–and that makes sense, though it’s a bit like a house on fire, and you’re standing and staring at the flames. That fire’s eating the oxygen in the room, igniting everything inflammable, burning down some Capricornian structure related to the House where the conflagration conjunction, occurs, it may spread havoc to the Houses ruled by Mars-Pluto, but, let’s be clear, nobody’s missing that fire. So what do we need advice about this for? Isn’t the only applicable advice: put out the fire?

True, some may succumb to ego and try to pull the whole charred structure down (think of the human dumpster fire that is Donald Trump with that lickety-flame hair–like all the most toxic people, if he can’t win he’ll claim it’s rigged and trash the whole thing, whether it’s a card game or a national election–and of course today is the final debate–brace yourselves for some Molotov-cocktail throwing on both sides that could spark a firestorm); for the rest of us, choices may carry a ‘do (Mars) or die (Pluto)’ cast.

I firmly believe we’ll all see the fire–what we won’t be quite so aware of (which may allow it to have a much greater impact than we realize) are these influences: Vesta moves into Leo, prompting us to honor priorities, the mate, and the home (a potential burning structure) for our own sake–that offers excellent Self-care; the Sun is sesquiquadrate the South Node point, perhaps drawing our attention back repeatedly to what didn’t work in the past–a distraction we don’t need; and Mercury is busy busy busy, novile and contra-parallel the North Node, parallel Zeus, and quincunx Chiron, which means thinking is aligned with ambitions and desires but is resistant to moving into the future, and reasoning springs at least somewhat from the injured portion of the psyche–and that implies the mind may carry a bias we aren’t even conscious of.

It’s that Vesta move into Leo that saves the day; it urges us to clear out the static, the conflicting messages, and the obscuring smoke, and measure things by what we care about most, and this time we’re smart enough to throw our own welfare into the mix–so it’s likely that, as long as something else doesn’t overwhelm (by other transits to the natal picture), whatever moves we make will be in our own best interests, and serve to protect what we honor and commit our energy to.

'Chinese tea and pine nut cookies' Photo by Michal Osmenda from Brussels, Belgium Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 2.0 Generic

‘Chinese tea and pine nut cookies’ Photo by Michal Osmenda from Brussels, Belgium Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 2.0 Generic

Today’s word image is a red tin of your favorite cookies. A small indulgence can be disproportionately comforting today, so find your pleasures where you may.

For those born with the Sun at 27 Libra: You are headed toward something I can only describe as a unification of the Self with Nature, or becoming a Negotiator, and/ or attaining immense personal authority. How can you tell which it will be, you ask? You already know if you’re slated for power over others, or to take on an extraordinarily influential role within some natural construct, shaping and, in a sense, ‘authorizing’ its effect. Don’t be shy–admit that’s what’s coming, at least to yourself, and get busy preparing; though some people look down their noses at the idea of studying up, you’ll make a much more serious and effective impact if you get ready ahead of time. Good luck, Libra, and Happy Birthday!

There’s a new page up: Mercury, Venus, and Mars Retrogrades for 2017

18 October 2016 Purest Form

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Beach of icebergs, in the south coast of Iceland, close to the Jokulsarlon lagoon... Photo by Moyan Brenn - https://www.flickr.com/photos/aigle_dore/21202481350/ CC BY 2.0

Beach of icebergs, in the south coast of Iceland, close to the Jokulsarlon lagoon… Photo by Moyan Brenn – https://www.flickr.com/photos/aigle_dore/21202481350/ CC BY 2.0

The AstroEssence: When the planet of relationships, what we value, and of gain (Venus) enters Sagittarius, we start to look at the facts, and this time around we have the courage and presence of mind to really see them, and to know what’s smart; change happens. This particular blend of influences can have almost magical repercussions in a gnarly election period, could help us get a clearer hold on our own instincts and the influence of material hidden in our ‘blind spots’, and could bring our identities toward their best and purest form, as close to unadulterated ‘Truth’ as they’ve ever been. A few will flip a destructive switch, fearing what lies within and so freaking out over potential exposure of who they really are–but they should relax: for anyone willing to see already knows what they’re about (Venus enters Sagittarius and is parallel and semi-sq Pluto, Mercury trine Pallas, Sun qnx Sedna)

Today’s word image is fog. What in your life creates immediate mystery, implying it simply by obscuring things? Rather than searching for an answer (and so pouring a lot of energy into something that, in the end, may not matter at all), sit back and savor the tantalizing way you just don’t know, allowing you to turn your attention toward what you can grasp, what you can affect, toward what really matters.

For those born with the Sun at 26 Libra: You’ve been running on instinct, and probably your last nerve–now it’s time to get right with Nature and your own biology, authorities in your world and your own personal expression of authority, to learn effective negotiation, and/ or to smooth things over with Mom. One or more of these topics will feature in the year ahead for you, and all of them suggest that you must fully and completely step up and take responsibility for your own choices and actions–if you don’t it could be a long, tough year with plenty of repercussions. On the plus side, if you’re honest with yourself, you’ll have the knack of knowing exactly what everyone else thinks–that gives you a distinct advantage. Good luck, Libra, and Happy Birthday!

17 October 2016 We Get It

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'Buckwheat Harvesters', 1888 Émile Bernard {{PD}}

‘Buckwheat Harvesters’, 1888 Émile Bernard {{PD}}

The AstroEssence: This is the story of how we’ll get what we’ve worked for and honored, and those in authority will just have to adjust to what we receive. The rewards, however, may be surreptitious, hidden in something dark or of lesser worth, even found in something others have discarded or rejected. A flowering of love may be what’s given us, and we may not at first see how much we deserve this–but we do. At the same time, ambition fulfillment is on everyone’s mind, but we’ll have a rough time visualizing what we want, because the light of what is (a light that is shining on exactly why we have earned the things we have) will be very bright; just make sure to take note of whatever good thing comes your way, Love, laughter, admiration, cooperation, even cash, that wasn’t there before (Venus trine Vesta, parallel Saturn, and qnx Ceres, Mercury conjoined Zeus, Sun sesq Neptune)

Loop the Loop, Coney Island (1903) {{PD}}

Loop the Loop, Coney Island (1903) {{PD}}

Today’s word image is a roller coaster. Aside from the obvious symbolism of whip-lashy experiences, what does this thing mean to you? Do you love them, hate them, or are you indifferent? I used to love them, and now don’t care for them, so the image makes me think: What is it that we once adored, that now we’d rather never experience again? This points to changing tastes, and possibly some re-defining of our own Self-image, as well as a recognition of the world’s current, disorienting state.

For those born with the Sun at 25 Libra: It’s funny–odd funny, not funny ha-ha–that there’s a crisis in either Love or Money in your life, and yet your attention is anywhere but there! You seem much more concerned with following your own instincts to see where they might lead, and in digging into your own psyche for treasure. Well now it’s time for you to see: one or more of the relationships or sources of ‘flow’ you’ve come to take for granted is in danger of disappearing–wake up and do something about it. It may not be readily apparent, and it may take the entire year to your next birthday to play out–but forewarned, as the say. Good luck, Libra, and Happy Birthday!

16 October 2016 Loyalties, and What’s Sacred

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Franz von Stuck 'The Guardian of Paradise' 1889 {{PD}}

Franz von Stuck ‘The Guardian of Paradise’ 1889 {{PD}}

'Tierpark Ostrittrum - Kampfbalken' Photo by Marius Kallhardt from near Bremen, Germany  Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 2.0 Generic

‘Tierpark Ostrittrum – Kampfbalken’ Photo by Marius Kallhardt from near Bremen, Germany Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 2.0 Generic

The AstroEssence: Are we butting heads with authorities, with Mom, with Mother Nature, or in negotiations over what’s sacred to us? And if we are, what does that say about our loyalties and priorities? What we honor is tested from without by forces that would compel us, and we need to parse out how important it really is for us to maintain our commitments. We have a chance to see whether our sacred investments are truly worthwhile–and whether those who challenge us are truly worth maintaining a relationship with. In fact, relationships and values offer inspiration and a spark of genius to us that aids in ambition fulfillment–it’s like interactions show us things in a new and creative way–and we should take action, but with great care, so we don’t Self-sabotage along the way (Vesta sq Ceres, Venus nov Zeus and semi-sq Mars)

{{PD}}

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Today’s word image is an egg. We’ve had this symbol before–but this time it’s hard-boiled. I think this is about some potential that has hardened into some sort of perpetual beginning–it’s something we may need to realize is never going to become anything more than it is–so that perhaps we need to stop hoping it will hatch, and turn our attention to something that will.

For those born with the Sun at 24 Libra: Energy expression may be oddly split for you this coming year, Libra, with some going toward establishing yourself and getting what you want, and some going toward purely pleasurable pursuits and/ or the accumulation of goods. These aren’t necessarily incompatible goals, but it will be important that you find a way to meld your Will and your need to feel ‘in charge’ (at least of yourself) with a genuine desire for comfort and sensual gratification. If you don’t figure out how to combine them, you may spend a lot of time feeling frustrated and then zoning out. Use your creativity, and listen to your instincts and those things you know deep inside to be true, and you’ll do just fine. Good luck, and Happy Birthday!

15 October 2016 Full Moon, Full Plate

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By Émile Friant - {{PD}}

‘The Boating Party’ or ‘Reunion of the Meurthe Boating Party’, by Émile Friant – {{PD}}

The Lunar Essence: With the Full Moon in Aries at 23 Aries 14 occurring at 9:23 PM Pacific daylight time, we see the threesome of Earth-Moon-Uranus in a less than one degree span opposed the Libra Sun, which is sesquiquadrate Neptune. The Full Moon itself of course forms a semi-square to Neptune, and is as stated conjoined Uranus and widely conjoined Ceres, the latter of which sits at 29 degrees of the Moon’s sign, adding stress through the actions of Nature or authorities. The Full Moon is also quincunx Juno, and makes a wide square to Vesta, which we should count as the swift-moving Moon races toward, rather than away from, aspect completion, with this square creating a T-square with the Sun/ Earth-Moon-Uranus axis (but even more closely aspecting Ceres, as both Vesta and Ceres sit at 29 degrees), adding even more stress. It’s notable, too, that this Sun is also parallel both Juno and Neptune, suggesting that just observing, just seeing (the light of the Sun) can empower and make the dream, whatever that may be for the individual, a very realistic possibility.

full-moon-in-aries-october-2016So what do we get from this Full Moon? Why stress, of course! But from what source? We reach a peak of involvement with, rejection of, rebellion from, or original and innovative cooperation with ‘the group’, and this brings us to a point of ‘energy crisis’ in terms of our own power and authority, our priorities and those things we honor, and with how closely the results align with what we imagine is ideal, as well as how we feel about this resulting real-world arrangement. It’s a point of radical enlightenment, as we see quite clearly the personal power situation and the role we can play in the larger scenario, and these are revealed within the microcosm of a single interactive situation; we assess this real-life situation, and see beyond it (into the Uranian future, if you will) to what larger role we can play, title we can claim, or area where we can accomplish.

There are both stresses that are not under our conscious control, such as Mother Nature, exerting herself through things like weather and our own biology, and stresses within areas where we have exerted ourselves, tried to gain empowerment or authority, tried to commit to those matters that are most important to us. The Vestal energies of dedication, commitment, and the sacred must resolve against those Ceres energies of power expression, authority, and knowing and controlling our ‘domain’, and this is done through Ceres’ own mechanism of negotiation, an internal discussion that happens within the individual psyche that is acted out in real-world arenas. We see what adjustments, compromises, and alterations are required for ‘the dream’ to become reality, with the light of the Full Moon showing us exactly where and how we are empowered to make it happen.

Wiosna w Gościeradzu (Spring in Gościeradz)  by Leon Wyczółkowski {{PD}}

Wiosna w Gościeradzu (Spring in Gościeradz) by Leon Wyczółkowski {{PD}}

The Sabian for the Full Moon is, ‘Blown Inward By The Wind, The Curtains Of An Open Window Take The Shape Of A Cornucopia’. The FM event ‘opens a window’ that is either a time period of opportunity, or an ability to both see our goals clearly, and to know what the ‘fruits’ of our current direction will actually be, the latter allowing us to make needed adjustments to our actions and choices. The FM offers either feedback that illuminates our own effectiveness and true course, or the chance to make things happen, if we’ll only take the steps, or modify our path, a chance to affect things that didn’t exist until now.

'Butterflies', Wilhelm von Kaulbach, c1860 {{PD}}

‘Butterflies’, Wilhelm von Kaulbach, c1860 {{PD}}

We always look at the Sun for a Full Moon, as the source of the Full Moon’s light. ‘A Butterfly With A Third Wing On Its Left Side’ suggests nothing so much as fulfillment; that is, the result of what has incubated and emerged, now fully ready, developed, that holds all the promise invested in its preparation–and a third wing simply implies a resource, a kind of existential aid, akin to the Third Eye: there is something extra, unplanned but propitious, that offers information or assistance specifically useful to our goals. Lucky us, right?

The AstroEssence: There are only a few other influences at play for the 15th, and these may have us spending the time leading up to the Full Moon with our attention in places other than those that will be illuminated with the Lunar culmination. One is the way we might be weighing methods of healing against our own wounds, judging physical as well as mental and emotional situations for how healthy they might be; it’s an attempt to concentrate on hurts, to deal with them, but perhaps not to totally embrace what we know to be the healthy option. We’re trying to justify holding on to our wounds. It’s our thinking that’s encouraging the problem: we are obsessed with the dark, with how we’ve been wronged, with how others hold power over us, and in continuing to nurse our hurts it’s taking a (Self) destructive turn. Fortunately, though, what we’ll actually choose to do will be done with an eye to building the future–it’s just that we may not see how much better the future could be, if we could forgive, heal, let go (Chiron sesq Hygeia, Mercury sq Pluto, Mars trine NN)

For those born with the Sun at 23 Libra: It’s all about taking what’s new, modern, original in your world and making the most of it. The sudden, the surprising, the heartfelt facilitates accomplishment, and the smart move is to embrace them. The only thing we can count on is change, right? Oh, and death and taxes. But, this coming year should be more than a little positive and profitable for you, Libra, just as long as you conquer that crisis in confidence, and realize you can’t rule unless you’re willing to claim your territory. Good luck, and Happy Birthday!

14 October 2016 Fanciful or Inspired?

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'Cranes in Dunes' Friedrich Lissmann 1910 {{PD}}

‘Cranes in Dunes’ Friedrich Lissmann 1910 {{PD}}

The AstroEssence: our ideas of our own empowerment may be inspired or fanciful, but in either case we hatch a genius creative approach that’s a bit off the beaten path; whether we’re successful with this or not depends almost entirely on two things: are we connected to instincts and at least peripherally aware of our own motivations? and how willing are we to heal what hurts in order to go forward? If we’re too attached to the past, we may not want to let go of wounds that have become a part of our identity, but if we can focus our energy and attention on the present, real-world situation, we’ll find the unique plan or approach that will allow effective empowerment, and so gain the Love, Money, or status we’ve been seeking (Juno receives a parallel from Neptune, a nov from Merc, and a qnx from Uranus, Venus opp Sedna, Mercury sxt Saturn and qnx SN, Sun qnx Chiron and nov NN)

Today’s word image is a crane. Did you see a tall, slender white bird, or a big piece of construction equipment? If the image that popped into your mind was the bird, then today instincts are strong, your connection to Nature is dynamic, and you can trust your inner compass; if you saw a construction crane, you may be too busy moving the pieces of the puzzle around to appreciate the bigger picture they make.

For those born with the Sun at 22 Libra: It seems you are quietly sussing out the best avenues leading to empowerment and gaining the status you seek, and you appear to be doing this while you distract others with erratic, rebellious, or original behaviors or constructions–so, with that kind of focused effort and skillful subterfuge going on, why are you still feeling uncertain? It’s your stressed relationship to authorities, Mom, or Nature itself, all of which require acknowledgment of the power of others to affect your world. Denial of their strength doesn’t improve yours; you’d do best to note the ways you can offer cooperation that will get you a lot closer to, or a lot more of, what you want. Good luck, Libra, and Happy Birthday!

13 October 2016 Aggressive Words

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'Whispering Sound' by Mizuno Toshikata, 1900 {{PD}}

‘Whispering Sound’ by Mizuno Toshikata, 1900 {{PD}}

The AstroEssence: Not just words, of course, but all communications, the symbolic, the non-verbal, the emotional, and the ripples that undulate through the Collective, all carry an aggressive edge. This may be good, in the case of those who need to assert their rights, stand up for themselves, or must be spurred to act, but too often Willfulness and ‘I Want’ dress up as righteous Self-defense and come to the party–meaning that aggressive people use the atmosphere as a cover for continued attack. The way to tell whether you are actually asserting yourself or just being a selfish grabber? Oddly enough, if you find yourself thinking about aggressing, about speaking up, declaring, or demanding, mulling it over or planning it, then it’s not a good idea–it’s the mind justifying the ego, just an excuse for going after your goals with no concern for others. Luckily, today just happens to be one of those days when true instinct brings a good balance in assertion vs. receptivity–and if you’re not sure if that’s instinct whispering in your ear, then get out into Nature–she, more than anything else, will serve to re-connect you to your inborn ‘knowing’ and to re-align you with the greater rhythms of the Cosmos (Ceres enters Taurus, Chiron contra-parallel Pallas, Fist of God with Mars sq Mercury, both sesq Sedna)

'Eye of Providence' Photo by Nheyob  Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported

‘Eye of Providence’ Photo by Nheyob Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported

Today’s word image is a glass eye. This is something that isn’t actually needed, it’s only used to make others more at ease when mixing with an individual who’s missing an eye. Do you have a ‘glass eye’ within the personality, something that serves no purpose other than to make it easier to get along with others, to be accepted by them? Have you tried recently to mingle without it? It may be time to put away one or more artificial aids to social interaction and just be ourselves.

For those born with the Sun at 21 Libra: Most of your year may be taken up with low-key, behind-the-scenes preparation, with a big reveal for the finished ‘product’ slated for the (fairly near) future. Do you know what project or effort I’m referring to? If you do, buckle down and get to work; if you don’t, it’s the eleventh hour, so don’t waste anymore time: take steps to make that long-contemplated work a reality. Good luck, Libra, and Happy Birthday!

12 October 2016 The Genius of What’s Contrary

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'After the Misdeed' What, oh what, could it be? c1885 by Jean Béraud {{PD}}

‘After the Misdeed’ What, oh what, could it be? c1885 by Jean Béraud {{PD}}

The AstroEssence: It’s a contrary day where we achieve our ends in round about or backward ways. We do this by: finding the empowerment in a hurtful situation or healing some facet of our effectiveness to 100%; ignoring nature, authorities, or the need to negotiate and in doing so finding something of value we normally would see as contrary to our standards; and noticing how exaggeration tells us exactly what the real message is. Imagination doesn’t serve us right now–it may only confuse communications and distort creative ideas–but if we draw our inspiration from solid, material matters, things that fill our environment or that we can hold in our hands, we’ll find a kind of genius to what they inspire in us (Chiron trine Juno and contra-parallel Ceres, Venus contra-parallel Vesta, Mercury parallel Jupiter and qnx Neptune, Earth nov Neptune)

Today’s word image is something blue. Let the color be a marker that draws attention back to the present, and tunes awareness to that moment, again and again throughout the day.

'The Caucasus'  Ivan Constantinovich Aivasovsky 1862 {{PD}}

‘The Caucasus’ Ivan Constantinovich Aivasovsky 1862 {{PD}}

For those born with the Sun at 20 Libra: Healing is on this year’s agenda, Libra, but only if you are willing to modify your own attitude enough to forgive. It’s your own rebellious nature that’s kept things from becoming whole again, and it’s time you see that, rather than thinking it’s the stubbornness of others keeping you apart. This healing thing is such a big deal, in fact, that opening yourself to this will bring a sensitivity, emotional creativity, and spiritual attunement beyond anything you’ve ever expected. Good luck, Libra, and Happy Birthday!