Free Will Astrology (Nov. 24-30) 

click to enlarge JAMES NOELLERT
  • James Noellert

ARIES (March 21-April 19): Aries author Chris Brogan says, "Don't settle. Don't finish crappy books. If you don't like the menu, leave the restaurant. If you're not on the right path, get off it." That's the best possible counsel for you to hear, in my astrological opinion. As an Aries, you're already inclined to live by that philosophy. But now and then, like now, you need a forceful nudge in that direction. So please, Aries, go in pursuit of what you want, not what you partially want. Associate with the very best, most invigorating influences, not the mediocre kind.

TAURUS (April 20-May 20): Author Kurt Vonnegut wrote wistfully, "I still catch myself feeling sad about things that don't matter anymore." If similar things are running wild in your head, dear Taurus, the coming weeks will be a favorable time to banish them. You will have extra power to purge outdated emotions and reclaim at least some of the wild innocence that is your birthright. PS: There's nothing wrong with feeling sad. In fact, feeling sad can be healthy. But it's important to feel sad for the right reasons. Getting clear about that is your second assignment.

GEMINI (May 21-June 20): "I'll walk forever with stories inside me that the people I love the most can never hear." So says the main character in Gemini author Michelle Hodkin's novel The Evolution of Mara Dyer. If that heart-rending statement has resonance with your own personal experience, I have good news: The coming weeks will be a favorable time to transform the situation. I believe you can figure out how to share key stories and feelings that have been hard to reveal before now. Be alert for unexpected opportunities and not-at-all-obvious breakthroughs.

CANCER (June 21-July 22): A study of people in 24 countries concluded that during the pandemic, over 80 percent of the population have taken action to improve their health. Are you in that group? Whether or not you are, the coming weeks will be a favorable time to go further in establishing robust self-care. The astrological omens suggest you'll find it easier than usual to commit to good new habits. Rather than trying to do too much, I suggest you take no more than three steps. Even starting with just one might be wise. Top three: eating excellent food, having fun while exercising right, and getting all the deep sleep you need.

LEO (July 23-Aug. 22): Leo-born scholar Edith Hamilton loved to study ancient Greek civilization. She wrote, "To rejoice in life, to find the world beautiful and delightful to live in, was a mark of the Greek spirit which distinguished it from all that had gone before." One sign of Greece's devotion to joie de vivre was its love of play. "The Greeks were the first people in the world to play," Hamilton exulted, "and they played on a great scale. All over Greece, there were games"—for athletes, dancers, musicians, and other performers. Spirited competition was an essential element of their celebration of play, as was the pursuit of fun for its own sake. In resonance with your astrological omens, Leo, I propose you regard ancient Greece as your spiritual home for the next five weeks.

VIRGO (Aug. 23-Sept. 22): Virgo singer-songwriter Florence Welch of the band Florence and the Machine told an interviewer why she wrote "Hunger." She said, "I looked for love in things that were not love." What were those things? According to her song, they included taking drugs and performing on stage. Earlier in Florence's life, as a teenager, "love was a kind of emptiness" she experienced through her eating disorder. What about you, Virgo? Have you looked for love in things that weren't love? Are you doing that right now? The coming weeks will be a good time to get straight with yourself about this issue. I suggest you ask for help from your higher self. Formulate a strong intention that in the future, you will look for love in things that can genuinely offer you love.

LIBRA (Sept. 23-Oct. 22): There's a Grateful Dead song, with lyrics written by John Perry Barlow, that says, "You ain't gonna learn what you don't want to know." I propose you make that your featured advice for the next two weeks. I hope you will be inspired by it to figure out what truths you might be trying hard not to know. In so doing, you will make yourself available to learn those truths. As a result, you'll be led on a healing journey you didn't know you needed to take. The process might sound uncomfortable, but I suspect it will ultimately be pleasurable.

SCORPIO (Oct. 23-Nov. 21): Scorpio author and philosopher Albert Camus was a good thinker. At age 44, he won the Nobel Prize for Literature — the second-youngest recipient ever. And yet he made this curious statement: "Thoughts are never honest. Emotions are." He regarded thoughts as "refined and muddy" — the result of people continually tinkering with their inner dialog so as to come up with partially true statements designed to serve their self-image rather than reflect authentic ideas. Emotions, on the other hand, emerge spontaneously and are hard to hide, according to Camus. They come straight from the depths. In accordance with astrological potentials, Scorpio, I urge you to keep these meditations at the forefront of your awareness in the coming weeks. See if you can be more skeptical about your thoughts and more trusting in your emotions.

SAGITTARIUS (Nov. 22-Dec. 21): Poet Renée Ashley describes what she's attracted to: "I'm drawn to what flutters nebulously at the edges, at the corner of my eye — just outside my certain sight. I want to share in what I am routinely denied or only suspect exists. I long for a glimpse of what is beginning to occur." Although I don't think that's a suitable perspective for you to cultivate all the time, Sagittarius, I suspect it might be appealing and useful for you in the coming weeks. Fresh possibilities will be coalescing. New storylines will be incubating. Be alert for the oncoming delights of the unknown.

CAPRICORN (Dec. 22-Jan. 19): What could you do to diminish your suffering? Your next assignment is to take two specific steps to begin that process. You're in a phase of your astrological cycle when you're more likely than usual to see what's necessary to salve your wounds and fix what's broken. Take maximum advantage of this opportunity! I proclaim this next chapter of your life to be titled "In Quest of the Maximum Cure." Have fun with this project, dear Capricorn. Treat it as a mandate to be imaginative and explore interesting possibilities.

AQUARIUS (Jan. 20-Feb. 18): "It is a fault to wish to be understood before we have made ourselves clear to ourselves," wrote my favorite Aquarian philosopher, Simone Weil. I agree. It's advice I regularly use myself. If you want to be seen and appreciated for who you really are, you should make it your priority to see and appreciate yourself for who you really are. The coming weeks will be a favorable time to make progress in this noble project. Start this way: Write a list of the five qualities about yourself that you love best.

PISCES (Feb. 19-March 20): Nigerian author Ben Okri, born under the sign of Pisces, praises our heroic instinct to rise above the forces of chaos. He writes, "The most authentic thing about us is our capacity to create, to overcome, to endure, to transform, to love, and to be greater than our suffering." You've been doing a lot of that excellent work throughout 2021, dear Pisces. And I expect that you'll be climaxing this chapter of your life story sometime soon. Thanks for being such a resourceful and resilient champion. You have bravely faced but also risen above the sometimes-messy challenges of plain old everyday life. You have inspired many of us to stay devoted to our heart's desires.

This week's homework: Gratitude is the featured emotion. See how amazing you can make yourself feel by stretching it to its limits.

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