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Free Will Astrology

ARIES (March 21-April 19): Your dreams will soon have potent effects on your waking life; they'll help transform conditions that had been resistant to change. Maybe you'll dream of being able to ripen green apples just by gazing upon them, then find you have a comparable power to expedite evolution in the daytime. Perhaps you'll dream of time-traveling back to ancient Rome and leading an uprising that frees thousands of slaves, then later that morning figure out how to liberate yourself from an all-too-real oppression. Who knows what fun will ensue after you dream of doing what you were forbidden to do — or were too inhibited to do — when you were in high school?

TAURUS (April 20-May 20): My daughter Zoe is modest about her poetry. She worries she hasn't earned the states of awareness she writes about. "I don't know if I'm really as sensitive and deep as I make myself out to be," she confessed as she handed me a beautiful poem recently. I understand Zoe's concern. Am I as enlightened as I seem to be, judging by the advice I dispense in these horoscopes? Nope. Yet while conjuring up inspirational messages for you, I find myself striving to live up to their moral power; I become a better person. How about you? Is there anything you can give or provide that will activate your dormant potential? Is there any beauty you can bring to life that will transform you on the inside?

GEMINI (May 21-June 20): I live in northern California, home of more psychotherapists per capita than any place on earth. Though it's fun to joke about it, I'm pleased so many of my neighbors place a high value on exploring and transforming their inner landscapes. If I were king, everyone would have an inalienable right not just to adequate food, housing, education and medical care, but also regular counseling with a wise advisor. Alas, our civilization is not sufficiently enlightened for that revolution. Until it is, you should take matters into your own hands. Now is a perfect moment to initiate, expand or cultivate your access to such a guide.

CANCER (June 21-July 22): I’ve been authorized to grant you a double-strength, time-release dose of sweet certainty. During the coming grace period, your attraction to doubt will fade. A resolve will rise up in your heart every time you need one. At first, the peace you experience may feel eerie. But you could get so used to it that you'll forever abandon the chronic vacillation you've assumed was your lot in life.

LEO (July 23-Aug. 22): Quoted in the San Francisco Chronicle, Leo actor Christian Slater bemoaned aspects of his training. "I glommed onto the idea," he said, "that I had to suffer for my art. Acting teachers love to promote the idea that in order to really get into character, you've got to put yourself through emotional hell." Many Leos have a similar attitude. You regard your whole life as a work of art that shines brightest when it flirts with interesting pain. In the coming months, though, you'll be called upon to make dramatic revisions in your approach to self-expression. Take your inspiration from Slater's new and improved belief: "Now I'd say, ‘Don't suffer for your art.'"

VIRGO (Aug. 23-Sept. 22): It'll be a zigzag, flip-flop, which-end-is-up week. Every plot twist will quickly split into at least two more plot twists; anything that looks like a trick ending will lead to what looks like another trick ending. Your natural talents for thinking on your feet and adapting on the fly will be even better than usual, though, so you're poised to thrive in slippery conditions that may befuddle weaker minds. Act as if there's no script for the unfolding drama; treat every situation like an improv exercise in an acting class.

LIBRA (Sept. 23-Oct. 22): The key to Libran happiness, says master astrologer Steven Forrest, is to seek serenity within. He warns that you shouldn't go overboard trying to manipulate the external world into becoming more tranquil. That's not possible, and it's a distraction from the real work, which is best done on yourself. The most reliable way for you to release tension, he says, is by putting yourself in the presence of beauty; by seeking out people and environments that elicit your deep sighs of esthetic enjoyment. At this moment, that's especially useful advice.

SCORPIO (Oct. 23-Nov. 21): It's your birthright to become a master of desire. Two related skills are involved. First, you have to regularly pare away all inessential desires and enthrone the precious few that are really important. Second, you have to steadily shed outmoded goals to make room for fresh goals that will consistently lead you away from the past and into the future. It's tough. Most people never come close to accomplishing such refined potency, and they don't have half the desires you do. Can you pull it off? The coming weeks will be a turning point in your quest to claim this birthright.

SAGITTARIUS (Nov. 22-Dec. 21): As you enter a more unpredictable phase, your fantasy life may become rather, uh, experimental. This'll be good — you're sure to dream up inventive solutions to problems — but you'll also have to guard against getting carried away. To curb excesses, I'm providing you with help from Sagittarian cartoon character Bart Simpson. If you start edging toward loopy intemperance in the coming weeks, repeat the following affirmations, which he has at one time or another written on his classroom's blackboard: "I will not eat things for money." "I do not have diplomatic immunity." "I will not teach others to fly." "Organ transplants are best left to the professionals." "Underwear should be worn on the inside." "I will not sell miracle cures." "I will not spank others." "I will not do anything bad ever again."

CAPRICORN (Dec. 22-Jan. 19): There's only one miracle you could really make use of right now, and it would require a shift so simple and subtle you may be in danger of overlooking it. And the secret you need to know most is hidden in plain sight, not far from where you're sitting. Don't search for the cleansing truth in exotic places. The ordinary events of everyday life will be rich with revelations if you can outwit the sleepy numbness you sometimes feel in the presence of familiar things.

AQUARIUS (Jan. 20-Feb. 18): Cancer cells are constantly developing in our bodies. Luckily, our immune systems routinely kill them off. Similarly, your mind always harbors pockets of crazy-making misconceptions and faulty imprints. They usually don't rise up and render you insane, thanks to the psychic version of your immune system. How can you stay strong in your ability to fight off sickness and madness? Eat healthy food, sleep well, get physical exercise, minimize stress, give and receive love. But here's another one that's not so widely advertised: Know what your life's purpose is and pursue it with all your heart. Vigorously practice all these life-enhancing pleasures in the coming days. You can add enormous strength to every function of your immune system.

PISCES (Feb. 19-March 20): Imagine you're swinging from the chandelier after midnight at the party of the year. The chandelier breaks, and you're thrown into the lap of an interesting-looking wallflower who's been sitting in the corner muttering into a cell phone all evening. The moment you land, the wallflower flatters you with outrageous praise, followed by an insightful critique of you that's both embarrassing and helpful, followed by another dollop of praise, followed by an invitation to leave for the airport together and get on a plane for Egypt. While this scenario may not literally occur, it's a close metaphorical approximation of what your future will be like. What name would you choose for yourself if you couldn't have the one you have now? Tell all at

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