Free Will Astrology (Nov. 23-29)

What do the stars have in store for you this week?

ARIES (March 21-April 19): One of your callings as an Aries is to take risks. You're inclined to take more leaps of faith than other people, and you're also more likely to navigate them to your advantage — or at least not get burned. A key reason for your success is your keen intuition about which gambles are relatively smart and which are ill-advised. But even when your chancy ventures bring you exciting new experiences, they may still run you afoul of conventional wisdom, peer pressure, and the way things have always been done. Everything I have described here will be in maximum play for you in the coming weeks.

TAURUS (April 20-May 20): Your keynote comes from teacher Caroline Myss. She writes, "Becoming adept at the process of self-inquiry and symbolic insight is a vital spiritual task that leads to the growth of faith in oneself." Encouraging you to grow your faith in yourself will be one of my prime intentions in the next 12 months. Let's get started! How can you become more adept at self-inquiry and symbolic insight? One idea is to ask yourself a probing new question every Sunday morning, like "What teachings and healings do I most want to attract into my life during the next seven days?" Spend the subsequent week gathering experiences and revelations that will address that query. Another idea is to remember and study your dreams, since doing so is the number one way to develop symbolic insight. For help, I recommend the work of Gayle Delaney: tinyurl.com/InterviewYourDreams

GEMINI (May 21-June 20): The TV science fiction show Legends of Tomorrow features a ragtag team of imperfect but effective superheroes. They travel through time trying to fix aberrations in the timelines caused by various villains. As they experiment and improvise, sometimes resorting to wildly daring gambits, their successes outnumber their stumbles and bumbles. And on occasion, even their apparent mistakes lead to good fortune that unfolds in unexpected ways. One member of the team, Nate, observes, "Sometimes we screw up — for the better." I foresee you Geminis as having a similar modus operandi in the coming weeks.

CANCER (June 21-July 22): I like how Cancerian poet Stephen Dunn begins his poem, "Before We Leave." He writes, "Just so it's clear — no whining on the journey." I am offering this greeting to you and me, my fellow Cancerians, as we launch the next chapter of our story. In the early stages, our efforts may feel like drudgery, and our progress could seem slow. But as long as we don't complain excessively and don't blame others for our own limitations, our labors will become easier and quite productive.

LEO (July 23-Aug. 22): Leo poet Kim Addonizio writes a lot about love and sex. In her book Wild Nights, she says, "I'm thinking of dating trees next. We could just stand around all night together. I'd murmur, they'd rustle, the wind would, like, do its wind thing." Now might be a favorable time for you, too, to experiment with evergreen romance and arborsexuality and trysts with your favorite plants. When was the last time you hugged an oak or kissed an elm? JUST KIDDING! The coming weeks will indeed be an excellent time to try creative innovations in your approach to intimacy and adoration. But I'd rather see your experiments in togetherness unfold with humans.

VIRGO (Aug. 23-Sept. 22): In her book Daughters of the Stone, Virgo novelist Dahlma Llanos-Figueroa tells the tale of five generations of Afro-Cuban women, her ancestors. "These are the stories of a time lost to flesh and bone," she writes, "a time that lives only in dreams and memories. Like a primeval wave, these stories have carried me, and deposited me on the morning of today. They are the stories of how I came to be who I am, where I am." I'd love to see you explore your own history with as much passion and focus, Virgo. In my astrological opinion, it's a favorable time for you to commune with the influences that have made you who you are.

LIBRA (Sept. 23-Oct. 22): In accordance with astrological omens, here's my advice for you in the coming weeks: 1. Know what it takes to please everyone, even if you don't always choose to please everyone. 2. Know how to be what everyone wants you to be and when they need you to be it, even if you only fulfill that wish when it has selfish value for you. 3. DO NOT give others all you have and thereby neglect to keep enough to give yourself. 4. When others are being closed-minded, help them develop more expansive finesse by sharing your own reasonable views. 5. Start thinking about how, in 2023, you will grow your roots as big and strong as your branches.

SCORPIO (Oct. 23-Nov. 21): Even if some people are nervous or intimidated around you, they may be drawn to you nonetheless. When that happens, you probably enjoy the power you feel. But I wonder what would happen if you made a conscious effort to cut back just a bit on the daunting vibes you emanate. I'm not saying they're bad. I understand they serve as a protective measure, and I appreciate the fact that they may help you get the cooperation you want. As an experiment, though, I invite you to be more reassuring and welcoming to those who might be inclined to fear you. See if it alters their behavior in ways you enjoy and benefit from.

SAGITTARIUS (Nov. 22-Dec. 21): Sagittarian rapper and entrepreneur Jay-Z has stellar advice for his fellow Sagittarians to contemplate regularly: "Ain't nothin' wrong with the aim; just gotta change the target." In offering Jay-Z's advice, I don't mean to suggest that you always need to change the target you're aiming at. On many occasions, it's exactly right. But the act of checking in to evaluate whether it is or isn't the right target will usually be valuable. And on occasion, you may realize that you should indeed aim at a different target.

CAPRICORN (Dec. 22-Jan. 19): You now have extra power to exorcize ghosts and demons that are still lingering from the old days and old ways. You are able to transform the way your history affects you. You have a sixth sense about how to graduate from lessons you have been studying for a long time. In honor of this joyfully tumultuous opportunity, draw inspiration from poet Charles Wright: "Knot by knot I untie myself from the past / And let it rise away from me like a balloon. / What a small thing it becomes. / What a bright tweak at the vanishing point, blue on blue."

AQUARIUS (Jan. 20-Feb. 18): In accordance with current astrological rhythms, I am handing over your horoscope to essayist Anne Fadiman. She writes, "I have always felt that the action most worth watching is not at the center of things, but where edges meet. I like shorelines, weather fronts, international borders. There are interesting frictions and incongruities in these places, and often, if you stand at the point of tangency, you can see both sides better than if you were in the middle of either one."

PISCES (Feb. 19-March 20): Over the course of my life, I have been fortunate to work with 13 psychotherapists. They have helped keep my mental health flourishing. One of them regularly reminded me that if I hoped to get what I wanted, I had to know precisely what I wanted. Once a year, she would give me a giant piece of thick paper and felt-tip markers. "Draw your personal vision of paradise," she instructed me. "Outline the contours of the welcoming paradise that would make your life eminently delightful and worthwhile." She would also ask me to finish the sentence that begins with these words: "I am mobilizing all the energy and ingenuity and connections I have at my disposal so as to accomplish the following goal." In my astrological opinion, Pisces, now is a perfect time to do these two exercises yourself.

Here's this week's homework: In what process have you gone halfway, and you really should go all the way?

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