In August, the stars go from simmer to sizzle, spotlighting passion and serving up major moments of change. With two galvanizing eclipses, two retrogrades, and a Jupiter-Pluto square, this year's Leo season is sure to be dramatic. Grab your eclipse goggles and watch.
Plant your feet wherever you can, because staying grounded will take a whole lot of effort this month. August sweeps in with major moments of change. We'll weather two life-altering eclipses, two retrograde planets and the grand finale of three Jupiter-Pluto squares (90-degree angles of tension) that have been shaking up everything from the personal to the political since Thanksgiving 2016.
Leo season: the Sun, Mars, and a solar eclipse.
Luckily, the Sun is in courageous Leo until August 22, with fearless Mars riding shotgun in this sign all month. We're ready to roar—and we'll certainly have our chance when the August 21 total solar eclipse brings a bold new chapter of self-expression and stunning revelations.
This eclipse, which falls at the Leo new moon, is further galvanized because it's a rare SECOND Leo new moon (the first was July 23). Normally there's only one new moon per sign every year, but in 2017, we get a doubleheader of fierce Leonine vibes. This is our cosmic (and karmic) call to step into righteous leadership, replacing ego-driven autocrats with true heroes who are champions and protectors of the people. (Calling all Lion Kings and Queens: Please step up!)
The Aquarius lunar eclipse: power to the people.
In the midst of this, the August 7 Aquarius full moon brings a partial lunar eclipse, revealing a need to come together around issues that affect all of humanity, raising our collective voices. Eclipses bring inevitable changes and turning points, pushing us off the fence if we've been wishy-washy and demanding that we take a stand.
Uranus retrograde: Tone down the antics; choose your battles.
But we'll still need to keep our wits about us. On August 2, revolutionary Uranus makes its annual retrograde in hotheaded Aries, taking a five-month nap until January 2. Self-serving agendas will have no place in this cosmic landscape. Uranus retrograde asks that we tone it down a little: Edgy behavior that seemed refreshingly radical in July will now seem obnoxious and destructive. Choose your battles…or put them off until next year. It will be all too easy to come across as the rebel without a cause.
Mercury retrograde: Think before you act.
Need another reason to go off the grid? Mercury, the ruler of travel, technology, and communication, also turns retrograde from August 12 to September 5. We're already feeling this, as Mercury's "shadow period" began on July 24. Mercury will rear through analytical and critical Virgo until August 31, so dish out your criticism (even the constructive kind) sparingly.
Virgo is the sign of wellness, and it's ruled by Mercury. Research healthy lifestyle options, but put off implementing anything extreme until next month. A gentle detox or, say, cutting back on sugar and dairy rather than cold-turkey eliminating them might be your best approach since retrogrades can foil any major plans. You could keep a journal for exercise, eating, or spending during this reflective period since Mercury is the celestial scribe. You'll do even better with this when Virgo season begins with the Sun's entry here on August 22.
All things digital definitely demand discretion this month because Mercury and Uranus are both associated with technology. Will their retrogrades reveal another dimension of the Russia hacking and election meddling investigation?
While we're taking bets on that, let's back up our own sensitive data to a secure cloud or VPN (virtual private network) and strengthen those passwords. Use a light touch on that "publish now" button, and watch for the accidental "reply all" email that sends your snarky message or racy sext to unintended recipients.
Jupiter-Pluto square: Power struggles erupt; balance is needed.
Power struggles much? August 4 serves up the third and final Jupiter-Pluto square (the others were November 24 and March 30). Worldly Jupiter is in Libra, the sign of relationships; shadowy Pluto is in Capricorn, the ruler of governments, hierarchy, and patriarchy. Global politics have delivered nothing short of a real-time example of these intense cosmic conflicts.
In our personal lives, we'll be sorting through important dynamics, figuring out how to balance control and compromise. Some old "daddy issues" could surface, so make sure you're not projecting childhood angst onto your closest people. This Jupiter-Pluto square also prompts an investigation: Where are you giving your power away to be "liked" or keep the peace?
Squares get a bad rap, but they create conflicts that are designed to help us evolve. Sometimes, it takes a crisis or discomfort before we snap out of denial and take action. So maybe you need to speak up, leave an abusive situation, confront a bully, or open up and be vulnerable with someone who's proved themselves a safe bet. Explore, examine, and bust the heck out of these stagnant patterns already.
Saturn retrograde ends: Honesty is the best policy.
The month ends with a small reward for our bravery. Repressive Saturn ends its four-month retrograde in adventurous Sagittarius on August 25, helping our visionary plans move ahead. The ringed taskmaster issued a gag order on April 5 when it rear-ended its way through outspoken Sag.
We all would have been wise to keep our off-the-rails commentary to ourselves, and we should continue to temper our honesty with mindfulness while Saturn wraps up its three-year tour of Sagittarius between now and December 19. As Buddha said, "Three things cannot be hidden: the Sun, the Moon, and the truth."
Want more insights on how to level up your life? Check out your love horoscope, then find out why holding on to past relationships is the worst thing you can do for yourself.