ARIES (March 21-April 19): "It takes a spasm of love to write a poem," wrote Aries author Erica Jong. I will add that it takes a spasm of love to fix a problem with someone you care about. It also takes a spasm of love to act with kindness when you don't feel kind. A spasm of love is helpful when you need to act with integrity in a confusing situation and when you want to heal the past so it doesn't plague the future. All the above advice should be useful for you in the coming weeks, Aries. Are there any other variations you can think of? Fill in the blank in the next sentence: It takes a spasm of love to _____________.
TAURUS (April 20-May 20): "The great epochs of our life come when we gain the courage to rechristen our badness as what is best in us," wrote philosopher Friedrich Nietzsche. When I read that ambitious epigram, I didn't know what he was referring to. By "badness," did he mean the ugly, pathological parts of us? That couldn't be right. So I read scholars who had studied the great philosopher. Their interpretation: Nietzsche believed the urges that some religions seek to inhibit are actually healthy for us. We should celebrate, not suppress, our inclinations to enjoy sensual delights and lusty living. In fact, we should define them as being the best in us. I encourage you Bulls to do just that in the coming weeks. It's a favorable time to intensify your devotion to joy, pleasure, and revelry.
GEMINI (May 21-June 20): It's an excellent time to correct and uplift your self-image. I invite you to speak the following affirmations aloud: "I am not damaged. I am not on the wrong path. I am not inept or ignorant or off-kilter. The truth is, I am learning how to live. I am learning how to be a soulful human and I am doing a reasonably good job at that task. I do a lot of things really well. I'm getting to know myself better every day. I constantly surprise myself with how skilled I am at adjusting to life's constant changes. I AM AMAZED AT HOW MUCH PROGRESS I HAVE MADE IN LEARNING HOW TO LIVE."
CANCER (June 21-July 22): In the Tibetan language, the term nyingdu-la means "most honored poison of my heart." Many of us know at least one person who fits that description: an enemy we love to hate or a loved one who keeps tweaking our destiny or a paradoxical ally who is both hurtful and helpful. According to my analysis, it's time for you to transform your relationship with a certain nyingdu-la in your life. The bond between you might have generated vital lessons for you. But now it's time for a re-evaluation and redefinition.
LEO (July 23-Aug. 22): "Don’t pray for the rain to stop," advises Leo poet Wendell Berry. "Pray for good luck fishing when the river floods." That's useful advice for you, my dear. The situation you're in could turn out to be a case of either weird luck or good luck. And how you interpret the situation may have a big impact on which kind of luck it brings. I urge you to define the potential opportunities that are brewing and concentrate on feeding them.
VIRGO (Aug. 23-Sept. 22): Virgo writer Julio Cortázar (1914–1984) once remarked, "How tiring it gets being the same person all the time." That's surprising. In fact, Cortázar was an innovative and influential author who wrote over 30 books in four genres and lived for extended periods in five countries. It's hard to imagine him ever being bored by his multifaceted self. Even if you're not a superstar like Cortázar, Virgo, I expect you will be highly entertained and amused by your life in the coming weeks. I bet you will be even more interesting than usual. Best of all, you will learn many fresh secrets about your mysterious soul.
LIBRA (Sept. 23-Oct. 22): The blogger Frogbestfriend says, "One of the biggest problems with society nowadays is that I am so, so sleepy." Frogbestfriend is humorously suggesting that his inability to maintain good sleep habits is rooted in civilization's dysfunctions. He's right, of course! Many of our seemingly personal problems are at least partially rooted in the pathological ways the whole world operates. Our culture influences us to do things that aren't always healthy and wise. I bring this to your attention, Libra, because now is a favorable time to meditate on society's crazy-making effects on you. Now is also a pivotal moment to heal yourself of those crazy-making effects.
SCORPIO (Oct. 23-Nov. 21): Poet Maggie Smith writes, "We talk so much of light. Please let me speak on behalf of the good dark. Let us talk more of how dark the beginning of a day is." I offer her proposal as a fertile theme for your meditations. Of all the signs in the zodiac, you Scorpios are most skilled at teasing out the good stuff from shadows and secrets and twilight. And your potency in these matters is even higher than usual right now. Do us all a favor and find the hidden redemptions and potential regenerations.
SAGITTARIUS (Nov. 22-Dec. 21): When actors and other creative people in film win Oscars at the Academy Awards ceremony, they come on stage and deliver short talks, acknowledging their honor. These speeches often include expressions of gratitude. An analysis revealed that over the years, Sagittarian director Steven Spielberg has been thanked by winners more often than anyone else—even more than God. Based on my reading of astrological omens, I believe you deserve that level of appreciation in the coming weeks. Please show this horoscope to everyone you know who may be willing to carry out my mandate. Be proactive in collecting tribute, credit, and favors.
CAPRICORN (Dec. 22-Jan. 19): In the ancient Greek story of Odysseus, the hero leaves his home in Ithaka to fight in the Trojan War. When the conflict is over, he yearns to return to the beloved life he left behind. But his journey takes 10 years. His tests and travails are many. The 20th-century Greek poet C. P. Cavafy offered advice to Odysseus at the beginning of his quest: "As you set out for Ithaka, hope your road is a long one, full of adventure, full of discovery . . . Keep Ithaca always in your mind. Arriving there is what you're destined for. But don't hurry the journey. Better if it lasts for years, so you're old by the time you reach the island, wealthy with all you've gained on the way." As you begin your new phase of returning home, Capricorn, I invite you to keep Cavafy's thoughts in mind. (Read the poem: tinyurl.com/HomeToIthaka. Translated by Edmund Keeley.)
AQUARIUS (Jan. 20-Feb. 18): "I have never, ever, EVER met anyone who has regretted following their heart," writes life coach Marie Forleo. But what exactly does she mean by "following their heart"? Does that mean ignoring cautions offered by your mind? Not necessarily. Does it require you to ignore everyone's opinions about what you should do? Possibly. When you follow your heart, must you sacrifice money and status and security? In some cases, yes. But in other cases, following your heart may ultimately enhance your relationship with money and status and security. Anyway, Aquarius. I hope I've inspired you to meditate on what it means to follow your heart—and how you can do that intensely during the coming months.
PISCES (Feb. 19-March 20): Actor and author Jenny Slate testifies, "As the image of myself becomes sharper in my brain and more precious, I feel less afraid that someone else will erase me by denying me love." That is the single best inspirational message I can offer you right now. In the coming months, you will earn the right and the capacity to make the same declaration. Your self-definition will become progressively clearer and stronger. And this waxing superpower will enable you to conquer at least some of your fear about not getting enough love.
This week's homework: What part of your life would most benefit from redemption and regeneration?