VIRGO (Aug. 23-Sept. 22)
As you know, real confidence has no bluster or bombast. It's not rooted in a desire to seem better than everyone else and it's not driven by a fear of appearing weak. Real confidence settles in when you have a clear vision of exactly what you need to do. Real confidence blooms as you wield the skills and power you have built through your hard work and discipline. And as I think you already sense, Virgo, the time has come for you to claim a generous new share of real confidence. You are ready to be a bolder and crisper version of yourself.
LIBRA (Sept. 23-Oct. 22)
As I understand your situation, Libra, you have played by the rules; you have been sincere and well meaning; you have pressed for a solution that was fair and just. But that hasn't been enough. So now, as long as you stay committed to creating a righteous outcome, you are authorized to invoke this declaration, originally uttered by the ancient Roman poet Virgil: "If I am unable to make the gods above relent, I shall move hell." Here's an alternate translation of the original Latin text: "If heaven I cannot bend, then hell I will stir."
SCORPIO (Oct. 23-Nov. 21)
"Start every day off with a smile and get it over with," said the misanthropic comedian W. C. Fields. I know it's weird to hear those words coming from a professional optimist like me, but just this once I recommend that you follow Fields' advice. In the near future, you should be as serious and sober and unamusable as you have ever been. You've got demanding work to attend to; knotty riddles to solve; complex situations to untangle. So frown strong, Scorpio. Keep an extra sour expression plastered on your face. Smiling would only distract you from the dogged effort you must summon. Unless, of course, you know for a fact that you actually get smarter and more creative when you laugh a lot. In which case, ignore everything I said. Instead, be a juggernaut of cheerful problem solving.
SAGITTARIUS (Nov. 22-Dec. 21)
Mahalia Jackson (1911-1972) was a renowned African-American gospel singer who lent her talents to the civil rights movement. Martin Luther King Jr. often called on her to be an opening act for his speeches. She was there on the podium with him on August 28, 1963 in Washington, D.C., when he delivered his famous "I Have a Dream" speech. In fact, it was her influence that prompted him to depart from his prepared notes and improvise the stirring climax. "Tell them about the dream, Martin," she politely heckled. And he did just that. Who's your equivalent of Mahalia Jackson, Sagittarius? Whose spur would you welcome? Who might interrupt you at just the right time? Seek out influences that will push you to reach higher.
CAPRICORN (Dec. 22-Jan. 19)
When Europeans first explored the New World, ships captained by Italians led the way. But none of them sailed Italian ships or represented Italian cities. Cristoforo Colombo (today known as Christopher Columbus) was funded by the government of Spain, Giovanni de Verrazzano was funded by France, and Giovanni Caboto (now known as John Cabot) by England. I see a lesson here for you, Capricorn. To flourish in the coming months, you don't necessarily need to be supported or sponsored by what you imagine are your natural allies. You may get further by seeking the help of sources that are not the obvious choices.
AQUARIUS (Jan. 20-Feb. 18)
Walter Kaufman had a major role in clarifying the meaning and importance of Friedrich Nietzsche. His English translations of the German philosopher's books are benchmarks, as are his analyses of the man's ideas. And yet Kaufman was not a cheerleader. He regarded Nietzsche's Thus Spake Zarathustra as brilliant and triumphant, but also verbose and melodramatic: a "profusion of sapphires in the mud." I love that phrase, Aquarius, and maybe you will, too, as you navigate your way through the coming weeks. Don't just automatically avoid the mud, because that's probably where you will find the sapphires.
PISCES (Feb. 19-March 20)
I'm not tolerant of greed. Acquisitiveness bothers me. Insatiableness disgusts me. I am all in favor of people having passionate yearnings, but am repelled when their passionate yearnings spill over into egomaniacal avarice. As you can imagine, then, I don't counsel anyone to be piggishly self-indulgent. Never ever. Having said that, though, I advise you to be zealous in asking for what you want in the coming weeks. It will be surprisingly healing for both you and your loved ones if you become aggressive in identifying what you need and then going after it. I'm confident, in fact, that it's the wisest thing for you to do.
ARIES (March 21-April 19)
In the coming weeks, it will be important for you to bestow blessings and disseminate gifts and dole out helpful feedback. Maybe you already do a pretty good job at all that, but I urge you to go even further. Through acts of will and surges of compassion, you can and should raise your levels of generosity. Why? Your allies and loved ones need more from you than usual. They have pressing issues that you have special power to address. Moreover, boosting your largesse will heal a little glitch in your mental health. It's just what the soul doctor ordered.
TAURUS (April 20-May 20)
The Icelandic word hoppípolla means "jumping into puddles." I'd love to make that one of your themes in the coming weeks. It would be in sweet accordance with the astrological omens. You are overdue for an extended reign of freelance play ... for a time of high amusement mixed with deep fun and a wandering imagination. See if you can arrange to not only leap into the mud, but also roll down a hill and kiss the sky and sing hymns to the sun. For extra credit, consider adding the Bantu term mbuki-mvuki to your repertoire. It refers to the act of stripping off your clothes and dancing with crazy joy.
GEMINI (May 21-June 20)
During the course of its life, an oyster may change genders numerous times. Back and forth it goes, from male to female and vice versa, always ready to switch. I'm nominating this ambisexual creature to be your power animal in the coming weeks. There has rarely been a better time than now to experiment with the pleasures of gender fluidity. I invite you to tap into the increased resilience and sexy wisdom that could come by expanding your sense of identity in this way.
CANCER (June 21-July 22)
I'm getting the sense that in the coming days you will be more casual and nonchalant than usual—more jaunty and unflappable. You may not be outright irresponsible, but neither will you be hyper-focused on being ultra-responsible. I suspect you may even opt not to be buttoned and zippered all the way to the top. It's also possible you will be willing to let a sly secret or two slip out, and allow one of your interesting eccentricities to shine. I think this is mostly fine. My only advice is to tilt in the direction of being carefree rather than careless.
LEO (July 23-Aug. 22)
In his novel Les Miserables, French author Victor Hugo chose to write a convoluted sentence that was 823 words long. American novelist William Faulkner outdid him, though. In his book Absalom, Absalom!, he crafted a single rambling, labyrinthine sentence crammed with 1,287 words. These people should not be your role models in the coming weeks, Leo. To keep rolling in the direction of your best possible destiny, you should be concise and precise. Straightforward simplicity will work better for you than meandering complexity. There's no need to rush, though. Take your time. Trust the rhythm that keeps you poised and purposeful.
Go to RealAstrology.com for Rob Brezsny’s expanded weekly audio horoscopes and daily text-message horoscopes. Audio horoscopes also available by phone at 877-873-4888 or 900-950-7700.