Illustration by Taylor Dow

Well Balanced

Libra season begins and Pluto acts up.

The Sun enters Libra on Friday, marking the fall equinox as well as the beginning of festive, friendly Libra season! If you didn’t complete every item on the to-do list you wrote during Virgo season, don’t fret. We’ll be drawing on both Libra and Virgo qualities for a while, because plenty of planets are still stuck in Virgo. One of them, Mercury, finally moves beyond its post-retrograde “shadow” on Wednesday. No more weird retrograde aftertaste! However, when Mercury stared down Neptune on the 19th, the two planets created communication knots that we’ll be untangling for a few days. With hazy messages, frustrating roadblocks, and confusion abounding, it might feel as if Mercury is still retrograde. Given Neptune’s role, we may also face disappointment, loss, or even addiction issues. But these knots should loosen by the weekend. And while buoyant Libra season is filling our hot-air balloon this week, intense Pluto is weighing us down like a sandbag we can’t shake. During this seasonal (and astrological) transition, we’re working with opposing forces. We have adjustments to make.


You’ve probably noticed that two consecutive astrological signs tend to be oh-so-different from each other. Earth sign Virgo, for instance, was all whole grains, hard work, and health. But Libra is associated with sweet foods like candy and frosting. And revelry! In Libra season we’re celebrating the honey of the harvest, sharing gratitude for the delicious bounty of summer’s crops. Virgo—represented by a Tarot card literally named “The Hermit”—craves solitude, yet Libra relishes parties and events that bring people together. Libra loves romantic settings, games with no losers, and flirty banter. (Libras, you know it’s true.) Whereas Virgo gets grumpy if someone interrupts their productivity, chatty Air sign Libra considers socializing and checking in on friends a necessity, not a distraction. So if you spent Virgo season head down, focused on tasks … try looking up. Reach out and see what your loved ones are up to.

Love-and-pleasure planet Venus rules Libra. It’s no wonder, then, that Libra finds magic in one-on-one intimacy and union. Connections with others are reflecting pools that reveal to us who we really are. According to Libra, bonds between hearts give life meaning. Symbolized by a pair of metal scales that seek equilibrium, Libra desires win/win solutions and fairness. Those Libra scales also represent the fall equinox, the point of the year when day and night are even. After Friday’s equinox, though, we’ll continue to lose a few minutes of light each day as we approach the winter solstice’s peak darkness. Upbeat, supportive Libra is the smooth salve that eases our cold plunge into winter.


Having been retrograde since April, Pluto is rumbling in the basement this week, preparing to turn direct on the 28th. As Pluto’s big turn gets closer, we’ll notice Plutonian themes pop up in our personal lives and in the news. Thank goodness the Libra Sun is here to brighten the mood, because Pluto matters aren’t much fun: non-negotiable changes, sweeping transformations, loss of control, death and rebirth. Serious stuff. Pluto also relates to banks, governments, and institutions of power. We may see efforts this week to balance power dynamics so things feel more fair. (How very Libra!) Because Pluto also deals with judgment, you may find yourself feeling harshly judged, by others or by your inner critic. Ease up and do your best.


A strong desire to do things differently and break old habits rises on Wednesday the 20th, but you’ll need to resolve tension between safe security and total freedom. There’s also danger of physical accidents. Careful! Thursday the 21st brings an emotionally serious morning that should lighten up by evening. A Libra Moon puts relationships on your mind. Don’t let anyone pit you against another person today. Friday the 22nd is the first day of Libra season! You might negotiate with a powerful figure and also receive unexpected assistance. It’s a good day to wrap up a creative project, too. On Saturday the 23rd there’s a sexy Scorpio moon and positive aspects throughout the day. Trust your intuition. By Sunday the 24th, Pluto themes will announce themselves and demand our attention for the next five days. Pace yourself, because there’s a risk of doing too much and running out of energy today. Monday the 25th might feel like an emotionally “ugh” day, as the Moon forms many tough angles. You could hear a no in the morning too. Tuesday the 26th is great for social activities, learning, and sharing ideas.

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