Horoscopes by Holiday

It's not always easy to know the value of things. A valuable Picasso vase is sold at a garage sale for two bucks. A dusty volume at the library fundraising book sale is also a priceless relic. It is so often the case that true value is not accurately summed up in a price tag. In this new cycle of Mercury in Leo, goods matter, but it's the story we're buying.

ARIES (March 21-April 19). Maybe it seems counterintuitive, but exposing what you feel insecure about is the confident move. To those with a core belief of worthiness, vulnerability is less of a risk. They know they will not be crushed by the outcome.

TAURUS (April 20-May 20). An interest in widening your circle suggests your values are changing, too. And when your values match with those of another, attraction naturally follows.

GEMINI (May 21-June 21). It is impossible to give without giving to yourself. You will help someone heal and grow and, in the process, be helped, healed and elevated by the experience.

CANCER (June 22-July 22). You've been thinking about what others get out of being in a relationship with you and what you get out of being in a relationship with others. This generates changes you'll implement throughout the month.

LEO (July 23-Aug. 22). You make efforts not to commit the crime of being too nice, trying too hard, taking responsibility for another person's happiness — all benevolent ways to impose on another person's autonomy.

VIRGO (Aug. 23-Sept. 22). You prefer to know what others want from you, and it is a hard thing to figure out without understanding where they are coming from. You'll make a quest out of it, and this leads to fascinating conversations today.

LIBRA (Sept. 23-Oct. 23). If someone doesn't seem to like it when you go about meeting your needs in your own way, that person might be trying to control you, which you're likely to resist with great might.

SCORPIO (Oct. 24-Nov. 21). No two people are completely alike, so to understand another person requires bridge building. Respect is the essential raw material this bridge will be built with.

SAGITTARIUS (Nov. 22-Dec. 21). Empathy helps you navigate relationships that would be impossible to understand if not for your ability to put yourself in the other person's shoes.

CAPRICORN (Dec. 22-Jan. 19). There are so many things you want more than comfort. You are willing to spend the entire day in an uncomfortable state if it means you can finally get the result you deeply desire.

AQUARIUS (Jan. 20-Feb. 18). When boundaries get crossed, you notice right away — a sign of your health. You no longer hold yourself responsible for the actions or emotions of others, nor do you expect others to be responsible for the way you feel.

PISCES (Feb. 19-March 20). Though it's nice to be appreciated "as is," the one who pushes you to try harder will earn your respect and affection. The bottom line: You enjoy the version of yourself you come to after working a little harder.

TODAY’S BIRTHDAY (Aug. 5). You will discover your own Elysium Field, an idyllic haven into which you have earned entry. As it is with all beautiful situations on Earth, this environment has a timeline, which makes it all the more important that you live it up! The work you do in November is the start of a difference you make in the lives of others where you can. Aries and Pisces adore you. Your lucky numbers are: 30, 25, 7, 13 and 2.

ASTROLOGICAL QUESTION: "I'm a Scorpio. The cynical side of me looks for the reasons people behave the way they do, and I usually figure it out, too. If everyone is acting out of their own selfish motives, is there really such a thing as love? I see a lot of people using each other. Relationships seem pretty conditional to me."

As the sign of life and death, you are the great realist of the zodiac, unafraid of asking the big questions. And you make an excellent point here. Is love to be trusted when the roots of relationships are embedded in a biological imperative? When people need each other for social status, economic security and familial structure, is it really fair to attribute their caring actions to something as intangible and mystical as the idea of romantic love? When being human comes with a psychological agenda that is so deeply embedded in the subconscious that many never become aware of it during their lifetime, what can anyone really trust about love?

Perhaps a better question is: What sort of world do you want to live in? You are the ruler of your skull-sized kingdom, and you get to make the magna carta of the land. How does not believing in love make you experience your world? Is there an alternative belief that can soften the edges and beautify your internal landscape? Truly, you are the only one who can answer here.

CELEBRITY PROFILES: Test pilot, astronaut, aeronautical engineer and university professor Neil Armstrong executed one of the most remarkable walks of human history. Besides Leo, the most prevalent influence in the moonwalker's chart is Virgo, an energy of thoroughness and vigilance. Ryan Gosling plays the legendary Leo in the Academy Award-winning film "First Man."

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