Free Will Astrology

Nov 13, 2002 at 12:00 am
ARIES (March 21-April 19): If you are an unevolved Aries, there's a chance you will gravitate toward the archetype of the hot-tempered, bare-knuckled, street-fighting hooligan in the coming weeks. If you are an evolved Ram, on the other hand, you'll probably smash a mental block, topple a rotting idol or destroy a parasitical hallucination. And what if you're somewhere in between the unevolved and evolved types? Whether you take the ignoble or noble path will all depend on what you really, really want to do.

TAURUS (April 20-May 20): You won't have a nervous breakdown in the coming week, Taurus. What happens may have the intensity of that experience, but in reverse. You can expect something like a relaxing eruption of profound gratification; or a rapid-fire series of insights that lead you to a cathartic integration; or a sudden confluence of several beneficent trends, resulting in an almost shockingly beautiful healing. Think you can handle this much blessing?

GEMINI (May 21-June 20): In the wake of the alienating experiences you've had recently, Gemini, I think you need to reunify yourself. Here are a few ideas, drawn from an anonymous author's unpublished manual called "Self-Love Without Apology." 1) Have two trusted companions simultaneously whisper sweet praise, one in each of your ears. 2) Write "I am complete" with your dominant hand as you use the other hand to draw a picture of yourself wearing a crown. 3) Surround yourself with mirrors and kiss yourself on the lips 11 times while singing your favorite lullaby. 4) Visualize two versions of yourself, one male and one female, holding hands as they gaze into a reflection of the moon on a river.

CANCER (June 21-July 22): In the centuries after Christ died, several varieties of Christianity competed for ascendancy. One ultimately triumphed, and its followers got to decide which of his teachings would be included in the orthodox canon and which wouldn't. "If you bring forth what is within you," said Jesus in one of the gems the church fathers excluded as heretical, "what you bring forth will save you. If you do not bring forth what is within you, what you do not bring forth will destroy you." This exhortation, a blend of sweet potion and kick-ass medicine, is your perfect food for thought this week, Cancerian.

LEO (July 23-Aug. 22): I'm a big fan of regular purification. I believe every one of us should periodically shake ourselves free from the grip of stale habits and rotting karma. My method does not, however, revolve around ordeals of self-denial. Instead, I prefer to instigate purification through rituals of liberation. Would you consider this approach, Leo? If so, close yourself down to influences that demean your spirit and lower your energy, even as you open yourself up to people and adventures that stoke your excitement about being alive. Nothing will cleanse you more efficiently.

VIRGO (Aug. 23-Sept. 22): Dear Dr. Brezsny: What's a good way to get rid of gophers? They're constantly ripping holes in my backyard, which keeps me chronically pissed off, and that makes it pretty hard to concentrate on carrying out the uplifting suggestions you give in your horoscopes. —Seething Virgo in Iowa. Dear Seething: Go out in your backyard and act like a gopher. Dig in the dirt like you were born to do it. Rip up a hundred holes. Get totally filthy. I guarantee the gophers will leave. And if there are any other kinds of pests you want to banish from your life, try a similar approach. Learn their ways. Empathize with them. See the world as they do. Their power over you will magically fade.

LIBRA (Sept. 23-Oct. 22): Scavenger Hunt time, Libra! Here are the first items on your list: a lampshade painted with a scene of dogs playing poker; a book on astrology that quotes Goethe and T.S. Eliot; a jigsaw puzzle of the Shroud of Turin; and a breath freshener glued into a collage by an artist commemorating her high school days. Once you exercise your intuition muscles scrounging around for that stuff (even if you don't find any of it), you'll be warmed up for the second level of the hunt — the more important metaphorical phase. The items on that list: one of your valuable assets that has fallen into disuse; a neglected talent that needs more training; and a clue about how to resurrect a pleasure that has gone to seed.

SCORPIO (Oct. 23-Nov. 21): I believe that following the golden rule is not just a virtuous way to live, but also the best way to ensure the success of your selfish goals. "Do unto others as you would have them do unto you" is a potent magic spell equaling anything you could learn in a shamanic initiation or book of wizardry. This amusing truth is now your secret weapon, Scorpio. I urge you to experiment with it freely. You might also want to mess around with the silver rule, formulated by my reader Liza L: Do unto others as you would do unto your new convertible sports car that you bought at the apex of your midlife crisis to attract an innocent who shares your sexual orientation.

SAGITTARIUS (Nov. 22-Dec. 21): Back in 1999, I bought a luxurious bed for me and my new girlfriend. Later, when we broke up, the bed became a symbol of love gone bad, and I couldn't stand to keep it around. Alas, no charitable organization would accept it as a donation — it was too damn big — so I decided to haul it to the dump in my pickup truck. As I idled behind a line of cars at the entrance, a guy walked up, knocked on my window and asked if he could take the bed off my hands. He and his pregnant wife had managed to score a rental home after being homeless for a year, and my bed would be their first piece of furniture. Overjoyed at my good luck, I drove it to their new digs. And that's how I turned my sad old baggage into a bright, beautiful gift. I predict that you, Sagittarius, will soon have an analogous opportunity.

CAPRICORN (Dec. 22-Jan. 19): If you keep a diary, you'll have good reasons to pack it with five times as much testimony as usual in the coming weeks. To set the tone, put this poem by L.S. Asekoff at the top of the first page: "Flying solo above the flames, I see the future fan out before me as one by one I discard the cards in my hand." And what if you don't have a diary? Please find some other way to express the surge of liberatingly lonely, creatively destructive, convulsively triumphant novelty that'll be roaring through you.

AQUARIUS (Jan. 20-Feb. 18): Still afraid that life is a random hodgepodge of meaningless events that are unresponsive to your deepest desires? Sooner or later, I'll talk you out of that little delusion. The divine interventions coming your way this week should help a lot; I doubt you'll be able to sustain your skepticism about life's inherent goodness in the face of so much catalytic help. You may even make progress on another one of the pet projects I hope to interest you in: learning how fun it is to change yourself in order to cash in on your good luck.

PISCES (Feb. 19-March 20): "I invite men drenched in Time to recover themselves and come out of time, and taste their native immortal air." So said essayist Ralph Waldo Emerson, and now I'm passing it on to you just in time for your season of transcendence. In the coming weeks, Pisces, you'll be continually inspired to rise above situations that might have dragged you down at other times. You'll find it relatively easy to excuse yourself from your monkey mind's endless chatter. Lowest common denominators won't seduce you; unconscious ruts won't ensnare you; inferior motivations won't distract you. Where's the last place on earth you'd ever want to visit? Visualize a scenario in which you're having fun there. Tell me about it at