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Life shrinks or expands in proportion to one's courage. – Anais Nin

April is here, and it feels like just yesterday was January 1, 2012 and we were reflecting on 2011.  So how is 2012 going?  Is it everything you were hoping for?  Is it as full of potential as you thought it would be in the beginning of the year?

We start off April with the Sun in Aries.  In fact most of April is full of Aries Sun energy.  Mercury retrograde finishes up on April 4, and Mercury landing in Pisces and then will move into Aries through the month of April.  Of course we have Uranus in Aries.  And Mars (the ruling planet of Aries) completes its retrograde on April 13th.  While the beginning of April may feel like stop and go for some of us, but April 13th, we have completed 2 big retrogrades and should be ready to let ourselves get lost in the passion that is Aries.  Aries is the first sign of the Zodiac and it's key words are beginnings, childlike, passion, lust, fire, and courage!  This month, ask yourself where you could use an extra dosage of passion and courage in your life.  Your courage is a statement of confidence and trust.  Courage speaks to the Universe and it says, "Bring it on!"  Desire requires courage to make it a reality.  Step into your courage and do something you have never ever done before this month!

Remember to read the horoscope for both your Sun + Rising Signs!  

Aries: Who do you want to be?  This month you are shaping your identity for the next 12 months.  The actions that you take this month will echo throughout for the upcoming year.  If you want to be fearless, take risks, if you want to be athletic, start working out.  You can be anything you want to be!  In fact, you already are everything you want to be, you must just realize it.  Let your actions reflect your highest desires!

Taurus: It's time to come out of the attic you have locked yourself in.  You may have been wallowing in your woes and fears.  We all have them, you are not alone.  Everyone has their issues, and it is when we share these issues and still come down to the dinner table even with our challenges that our wounds can heal.  Celebrate!  You have so much to contribute to the communities you belong to.

Gemini:  This is a great month for friendship – reconnecting with old friends and making new ones.  It may seem that you are always meeting new people.  You are a Gemini, so it is expected, but this month you are connecting on a deeper level with people and communities.  This is also an awesome month to start volunteering or rallying around a cause you believe in.  Put those communication skills into action for the people!

Cancer: It's time to do some meditating and reflecting on your career.  Perhaps you have lost focus with what it is that you actually love to do and give to the world.  Sometimes money, status, and titles can get in the way and make us forget what it is that we actually love doing.  What if there was not money at all involved in what you are doing, would you still be doing it?

Leo:  Mars goes direct in your 2nd house on April 13.  This is good news for your bank account and you may notice new opportunities coming up for work that could make things easier for you.  Simplify your life.  Not in the sense of giving away all of your stuff, but work smarter, not harder, so that you can enjoy some leisure and fun mixed in with the work and school.

Virgo: Let the Aries energy ignite your life Virgo.  LET GO!  You have been due for big transformations, but you are fearing them.  Get your courage up!  Pay attention to your solar plexus area – do breath of fire, hit the gym, do things that get your adrenaline up.  Use that adrenaline to fuel your courage.  Feel the fear and do it anyway.  You will feel lighter after some of those things, conversations, situations, jobs, etc have been released.

Libra: This month's Aries sun is in opposition to your natal Libra sun.  This is a time to comb through all the relationship kinks you have been having.  Perhaps you find yourself compromising parts of you for the sake of a relationship, and it is time to stop the compromising.  As you accept yourself for who you are, you will find that others do also.  Compromise is an area that you are pretty familiar with, become familiar with being yourself authentically.

Scorpio: How have you been letting a certain routine hold you back?  In life, routine can ground us, and it can also ground us so much that we become almost paralyzed by the routine and frightened to not be in certain routines.  This month, spice things up and take a break from your daily routines.  Spend time with new people, do things without any rational reason, and open up to new ways of taking care of yourself.

Sagittarius:  This is a great month to spend time with children.  As you spend time with youth, you spend time with your own inner child and are reminded of the essence of who you are.  Indeed in life, we change.  We grow, we shrink, we gain and we lose, but in essence we stay the same.  What is your essence?  What has been living within you since being a child that you are ready to share and show to the world?

Capricorn:  With Mars moving direct again in your house of higher learning and expansion, this is a great time to brainstorm applying to a new learning program and/or studying abroad or getting into business with international people.  Perhaps this may even change where you live and send you on a journey for a new home or living situation.  Get lost in wanderlust and expansion.

Aquarius: This month is a great time to reconnect with your immediate community.  You have so many ideas and you have a lot of knowledge that can benefit others.  Why shy away from leadership?  There are so many communities that you belong to that desire your wisdom.  Now is the time to release any fears of making mistakes and stepping up into the spotlights and into action for your beliefs and community.

Pisces:  The most powerful thing you can do in your life is to love yourself.  Whether you feel ways about your relationship, your jobs or any other areas, the solution to any of your problems is to love yourself unconditionally.  Take a moment each day to affirm your love and to match your actions and surroundings to the love that you have for yourself and the love that you are.

By Donation New Moon Call and Meditation.  This month, the New Moon falls into the sign of Taurus.  Taurus represents Mother Earth, practicality, grounding and sensuality.  Join me for a teleconference on April 21, 2012 to learn more about the energy of Taurus, how to use the New Moon, and for some meditation and journaling.  For more information, click HERE.

Shirley Kali Johnson, native New Yorker and Los Angeles-based, is a student of metaphysics. She has been studying astrology since the tender age of 5 years old and is thankful to share her love for the celestial bodies. She is available for Astrology Counseling, Reiki Healing, and Yoga.  For more info or to join her mailing list, please go to www.soulisticwellness.com