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Defender Picks


Horoscopes for Week of July 17th

Allow Cancer’s waters to heal you before we enter Leo season. If you are ready to check out, tired of all the naps, done with the unchecked flow of emotions, I implore you, stay present in it for one more week, the healing potential is worth the discomfort. For all the feels, Cancer is a powerful healer and conjurer. Cancer’s waters can hold immense emotional space for you, and if there is something you are ready to release, something you do not need with you any longer, pause and ask Cancer to take it away in their waters as they leave the spotlight to make room for Leo.


The Cancer in each of us is learning again and again that past hurts need not define our future. If you are holding onto a narrative that is blocking you, convinced you understand a lover fully, gripping onto memories of your childhood that may need your forgiveness, and/or ready to truly step away from jealousy as a tactic of control in your interpersonal relationships, ask for the strength to let it all wash away.


Let the river take them, river drown them


and make space for the brilliance of Leonine light in your life. Without Leo, how would we understand what it means to glow? When we embrace our inner leo, not only do we shine, we invite others to shine as well. 


When you shine, i recognize i can shine too. 


Regardless of how deeply imperfect, you can be as magnificent as you desire. This is a month to take a risk toward manifesting the delusions of grandeur you never share with anyone else. you can be that person you fantasize about, fierceness and all. Love your inner pop star!


Take what works, leave what does not, and make sure to check your rising and Sun sign. (People have been telling me their moon signs are resonating too, if you know your moon sign, go for it!)




For all that you desire to create you must take care of your body. Through all the confusion, money issues, frustrating job environments/ hunts, love affairs, and journeys to and from home, you must take care of your body. By the end of the week when both Mars and the Sun move into Leo, your eye turns away from unbridled fun and expression to the discipline and routine you likely need to feel stable, dear Pisces. Go back to yoga, return to your meditations, apologize to your ancestors for neglecting them, commit to getting the practical shit squared away and taken care of, and release any lovers who do not serve your highest purpose. Purify. Release anything that you do not need and does not serve you. When you arrive at this Sunday’s new moon in Leo, reflect on the routines you desire to build in your life and lean heavily on Mars to embolden you to make it so.


Reminder: you are likely going to be confused about what your path is, what the fuck you are supposed to be doing, and even who you are. Before Cancer’s waters recede and we turn to the bright Sun of Leo, release any shame you may feel around your deep uncertainty, release any notion that you are supposed to have your shit figured out, release any regrets you may have about where you have been excessive and out of balance.


Let the river take them, river drown them

My ego and my blame


Let Cancer take it all away for you, they can hold you. If you feel overwhelmed this week, take time to lay with your back flat on the earth. The earth can hold it all for you too. Sweetly ask your ancestors to prop you up and guide your feet where you need. When you feel a wave a self-judgement or severity coming, release it all through your feet. Let it go! this is your yearly reminder that in particular for you Pisces, grounding is necessary and important to your wholeness and wellbeing. Return to the glory of your body.




You are brilliant, powerful, worthy, and necessary. Do not forget this in your moments of panic and despair. Before they recede for another year, allow Cancer’s waters to soften harsh self-talk when you do not meet your lofty expectations. Let go of the illusion that you must be the perfect community member/ friend/ revolutionary. Release here if you can.


How can you share your ideals in a way that truly suits your unique self? Words seem to be shimmering for you right now, use them as you need to express/lament/rage etc. but protect your energy. Spreading the word is important, but that work is difficult too. Remember to care for yourself and to nourish your home space as much as it nourishes you. Continue to take care of your needs and continue leaning on the universe when you feel weak and uncertain. Reminder: there is a divine plan and it is unfolding as it should.


By the end of the week when Mars and the Sun join Mercury in Leo, you have the opportunity to create your own mutual admiration club with another. If you are yearning for romance, stay open to people who are not afraid to share some of their shine and spotlight with you. Find the folks who remind you that you are incredibly special when you are at your lowest. Find the folks who hold you accountable to modeling your ideals in your interpersonal relationships before you espouse them to the world.


Use this Sunday’s new moon in Leo to set intentions around the kinds of partnerships you desire in your life. Whether you have them, or yearn for them, take a moment to reorient yourself in Leo’s abundant sunshine and ensure you are serving your highest purpose in relationship to others.




If you are willing, you can get intimate with the parts of you (and of others) you usually turn away from. your rage, your anger, your jealousy, your controlling tendencies, your desire for power, your repressed sexual urges—all the muck that needs your attention. This builds upon your work coming to new understandings of what it means to partner with another. After you have made a choice to build deeply with someone, how do you deal with all the shit that gets brought up when someone sees the core of you? There is work for you to do here if you are willing.


Before all of that though, let Cancer’s waters wash away fears that may be blocking divine love from entering your life. Let the fact that you are on the other side of Cancer’s volatile reservoir remind you that you are resilient in the face of all potentially uprooting forces, love included. Allow Cancer to take away your fear of losing control, let Cancer heal you of the illusion that your desire for home and/or family life is a weakness and not a profound strength. When you feel too tough to love, let Cancer’s waters wear down your harshest edges. It may take a long while yet, but if you can surrender to the massive softening occurring in the universe, you can make yourself spacious and receptive to profound love connections and partnerships.


As you allow Cancer to remind you of the wounds that still need cleansing, prepare yourself to get intimate with parts of your psyche you do not allow to see the light of day. Prepare to shed old ideas around partnering that do not serve your highest purpose. Prepare to be reborn with the ability to move through your scariest parts with openness and warmth and to be reborn with the ability to ask for what you need from the universe and from your intimate partnerships.




Keep returning to your heart when your thoughts threaten to ruin your day and block your joy. When the big picture gets too overwhelming sit down and ground yourself into the little steps you need to take to manifest that big picture. The intense feelings and fixations you are grappling with regarding your family and roots (as well as urges to create new roots) will begin to dissipate as the Sun goes into Leo at the end of the week. But before that comes, how have you maintained sanity while submerged in Cancer’s waters? Reflect on this, you will need it for a long while yet. What tools did you create to keep going when the inability to see what your destiny is regarding family was too much to bear? How did you navigate unhealthy habits that do not support your peace? What insecurities named themselves to you so you can finally work to release them? Yes, let Cancer’s waters wash away the shit that is just extra weight you do not need, but before Sunday’s new moon in Leo, pause to reflect on Cancer season. Then celebrate the parts of you that have been reborn more wise and more resilient for all that is to come. Celebrate the parts that have become more forgiving.


By the end of the week the energy shifts toward Leo, a fire sign way closer to your vibe and vibrance. This Leo season is calling you to be bold, experimental, seek knowledge, and enjoy the bounty of life. This Leo season may serve as a much needed reminder that you are the shit, dear Sagittarius. The universe giddily awaits to enter your classroom and exchange knowledge with you. Keep getting spacious. Keep creating the room you need to expand. Keep saying yes to what makes you a little nervous and a lot excited. Glow Sagittarius, glow! You deserve it after months and months (and months) of hard work. 




Before the Sun moves into Leo and your focus shifts to setting yourself up for a career that warms your heart and makes you proud, Cancer still has much to offer you when it comes to discovering and reaffirming your beliefs and ideals, especially in your relationships. If you yearn to farm and live off the land, find the people who are mirroring that desire back to you in your inner circle, you will need them in order to manifest your dreams. If you believe deeply in a political framework or mode of living, again, find the folks in your life who are resonating with you. If you look around and feel alone in this regard, then Cancer has unearthed some work for you to do.


Let the last lesson Cancer leaves you with be that sometimes you just have to take your step in the face of extreme instability and trust that you will be held throughout the process. If you find you have honed in on a plan that will allow you economic independence, reflect for a moment on where it has gotten too rigid. No need to impulsively throw it aside, just reflect on where you can actually soften in your dogmatic effort to get what you want. Reflect on where more adventure and fun could fit into your life.


Reflect on all that you have learned, the good and bad, about your work and continue strategizing around how to set boundaries around your labor, particulalry so you can learn other skills and feed your creativity. If you find yourself uncertain about how to bring creativity into your life, or even how to access your own creativity, learn to trust your heart, it will guide you where you need to go.


By week’s end, the Sun moves into your house of career and your shine will likely be on your mind. If you are not currently doing the work your truly wish to do, how can you finesse your way there? How can you commit to the long haul of making it happen while also being able to stop and smell the roses along the way?




Listen closely to cues the universe is giving you regarding the self-care routines you need in order to maintain your hustle. As you continue to grow into yourself and build a real sense of resilience and security, keep remembering your body. All the coin, shine, and praise in the world cannot be built without a foundation to return to and rest, pause often to give your body the fuel it needs. Bow that you know you have the willpower and drive, let Cancer’s waters wash away fears that you do not have the guts to tough it out. You are stronger than you know, dear Libra, this past month should have proven that to you.


Freedom is a tough thing to conjure, but if you are determined to manifest it keep this in mind—messy relationships, even those you leave because they restrict you, can become extra baggage you do not need. As you find ways to liberate your love life, think strategically about how you enter and leave relationships and call on your incredible grace to navigate without the enormous mess that can come with romantic separations and love affairs.


By the end of the week mars and the Sun move into Leo and your dream visions get even stronger. Keep investing in communities that are creating the kind of world you want to live in, and allow those ideals to guide the ways you navigate your career choices. Stay open to revelations regarding the work that truly lifts your spirit and sings to you. Set the intention to find the balance between honoring yourself and your freedom while working toward justice for your people this Sunday’s new moon in Leo.




It will soon be time to rest, reflect, recuperate, and process the last year of your life dear Virgo. Before you take the many naps you deserve, treasure the pearls of wisdom you have culled from Cancer’s waters over the last month. Relish in the clarity you are coming to regarding what is next on your (long) list of crafts to master and information to gather. Celebrate the deeper understanding you are coming to regarding your creative urges and how they allow you to access the truth of yourself. Before you turn inward and dote on yourself, allow Cancer to wash away relationship wounds and habits that no longer serve you. Let it go. Let Cancer wash you clean of the stuff you are ready to release, particularly doubts around your ability to prosper, thrive, and create the home you truly desire. Let Cancer rid you of doubts about your ability to heal yourself and others. Trust dear Virgo. Trust that there exists a plan that not even your brain can fully comprehend (and let that soothe you! for what is left but to surrender to the larger plan for your life?). If you are willing, you have the opportunity to step into your power as a healer, as someone whose devotion to their craft truly improves people’s lives.


You may anoint yourself and claim the confidence you need to serve the world in the ways you know you can.


This Sunday, set the intention to rest. This is your time to recharge and reset so you can welcome your birthday with bright eyes and an easy spirit. Show up for yourself in all the ways you need and be your own caretaker. You know your life is one intense growth spurt after another, rest up, i am sure your stretching will continue once the Sun returns to your sign.




Even through the restlessness, rest, dear Leo. If you cannot rest as much as you need to, how can you turn the dial way down so you are not going into your season stressed and exhausted? Trust that you will have all the time you need to learn all that you desire to learn. Wait until next week though, this week, try to take it easy. If there is any work you do, let it be to remind yourself that even if your path to security and economic independence seems blurry yet arduous, that Neptune’s station in this place of your chart is calling you to trust in the bigger, more divine picture. When your thoughts turn to your lack, what you do not have, and all that you need, pause to root into whatever faith soothes you. Trust that the universe provides, 


Use this coming week to reflect on the past year and the enormous ways you have grown and shifted and become an even brighter light. Celebrate the well deserved shine and praise you have gotten for being dedicated to your craft and putting good shit into the world. Reflect on how your relationship to your creative projects, children, and/or romantic life has changed and where you have come into yourself more in this regard.


Before Cancer’s waters give way to your sign, let Cancer take something from you that you no longer need. Whether it is thought patterns that create the illusion of lack over abundance, fear about having what you need, or relationship anxiety. Let cancer wash it away on the way out. You no longer need it.


By the end of the week when Mars and the Sun join Mercury in your sign (and of course, Sunday’s new moon in Leo) the major question for you is what do you want out of your next solar year? What would truly warm your soul and speak to your heart?




Dear Cancer, you are ready to expand but in which direction? Have you considered that this is a time for you to wander and discover versus naming your next area of growth with absolute clarity? Perhaps this is the time to voyage and adventure and let the dice fall where they may.


It may seem this week that your love life and intimate relationships are not only turning you inside out but are also threatening your sense of security (monetary as well as emotional/mental). I remind you that while two things may be happening simultaneously, one is not necessarily causing the other. The security you seek cannot come from any external source, including your relationships. It can only come when you do the difficult work of acknowledging your inviolable value and worth. Your ability to nurture others is not the source of your value. You have always been and will always be worthy, there is nothing to earn or prove here. Before you make the decision to blame your lovers, partners, or close friends for why you may feel out of your power, reflect on the ways you have let the illusion creep into your life that the more you give of yourself to others the more you are worth. And reflect on the ways you have been left empty, craving, and yearning as they have taken what they can never truly give back because it was never theirs in the first place.


You need to take it back dear Cancer. All of the care, all of the nurturing, it is yours for yourself before anyone else. Your wellness, your stability, and your peace of mind are more important than anyone right now. And if you find yourself wondering if that is selfish or not, I offer you this, if you are devoted to the work of showing up for others in a long-term, mutual way, you must learn how to show up for yourself first. When you allow yourself to be exhausted by others, you cannot show up for anyone at all.


Before the Sun leaves your sign and the work truly shifts to building your sense of security and getting free of anything or anyone who does not honor you as you deserve, make sure to take note of all that you want from this coming year. Make sure to release any shit that is last year’s shit. If things come up for you that you are over dealing with, just repeat to yourself, that is last year’s shit and i am leaving it there. Leave it!


My tenderness for you is deep dear Cancer.




Keep stepping into the power of your words dear Gemini. Keep allowing your warmth, generosity, and spark to be communicated in every conversation, Instagram post, and text exchange you participate in. Stay open to new discoveries you may come to as you sift through all the information that comes to you.


Keep working toward aligning your ideal version of the world with your paid work. It may seem difficult to find or create work that really sings to you (especially with bills to pay) but trust that you and your divine calling are marching toward each other, and will discover each other slowly but surely.


When the Sun and Mars join Mercury in Leo at the end of this week, your words get infused with Leo’s magnificence. Use this time to speak boldly and bravely about all that you wish to see in the world. Use this time to come into yourself as a leader and influencer in your communities as well as a connector. We so often forget that words are meant to connect us, and you are a refreshing reminder of the power of language to bring us together. For this Sunday’s new moon in Leo, set intentions around the words you use, social media, and how you wish to connect folks with your words. Set the intention to communicate bravely and with heart and to communicate from a place of warmth over pettiness so that you continue to serve your highest purpose.




Taurus you are thinking deeply about relationships of the highest order and how to be of service to them all. You are keenly able to see where you can be of service to your communities and your understanding of give and take in your relationships is being restructured to ensure there is equity and balance in all of your relations. This Leo season you will have the opportunity to bring this work into your familial life, chosen or otherwise. You have the opportunity to deepen your roots, to heal them, and to cut off what no longer serves you. This is a time to move with the confidence to refuse family dynamics that need to go. This is a time to get to know or reconnect with your ancestors and listen to what they have to tell you. Set the intention this Sunday’s new moon in Leo to keep your heart open to all of the ways family exists in your life. Set the intention to tend to your roots so when you need to expand upward toward the Sun you do not topple over.


Keep working toward your dream visions, even if the path to making them happen seems unclear or obstacle filled. your communities need you to keep going, they need the spaces you are trying to create. The healing, connection, and liberation you are conjuring up is too important for you to be cowed by any obstacles that stand in your way. Ground yourself and keep going. And remember there is as much divinity in the process as the final product. Release any insecurities and self-defeating thoughts that block you from the truth that not only do we need you, dear Taurus, but that we will support you when you are ready to call on us.




Allow your roots to heal you dear Aries. You may not understand why, but your desire to be surrounded by family and loved ones is powerful and should not be ignored. It is through your family (chosen and otherwise) that you are gaining clarity around what you truly value and wish to build in your life. Be careful to continue sifting through what of your family dynamics you wish to replicate and which you will need to release in order to come into your most divine self. Their relationship to money need not be yours.


Continue manifesting the career of your dreams, continue nudging it into greater alignment with your highest ideals and dreams for the way the world should be. If your expression still feels blocked at work, accept it, there may be more freedom for you to be who you are at home and in the presence of your people. The more open, fearless, and generous you can stay, the easier it will be to commit to the long work of increasing your control over your money. while money stuff may feel (and probably is) urgent, the more joy you can imbue your path with, the better.


By the end of the week, the Sun’s move to Leo shifts the focus to what makes your heart feel good and your expression unburdened. Continue working to access your feelings with clarity and you will conjure up a joyful month full of friends, joy, and laughter. If a creative project is pulling at you, be brave and explore what it would mean to make it happen. Above all, how can you be the breath of fresh air you need?


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Naimonu James is an astrologer based in New Orleans.  Consider donating or becoming a patron to support the healing, and be sure to subscribe to their inner circle here. Readings are pay-what-you can, learn more about chart readings here

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