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Free Will Astrology

ARIES (March 21-April 19): I heard from a reader who calls himself Drek, Agent of the Future. His words are apropos to what you'll be living through this week. "How come in the long list of human fears, 'showing one's true self' is never included?" Drek mused. "Hell, compared to the frighteningly wonderful madness of tapping into our naked souls, stuff like snakes and public speaking really doesn't seem that terrifying." I trust you've already guessed what this has to do with you. It's a perfect moment to overcome your fear of revealing your raw beauty to the world.

TAURUS (April 20-May 20): Want to stay sane and healthy in the coming weeks? Then get up close and personal with the animal that rules your sign. It won't be enough merely to gaze at images of bulls, though that would be good for starters. For best results, you need to be in the actual presence of a robust, full-grown bull. To commune with his primal energy will awaken in you instinctual powers that have gone to sleep, and will galvanize you for the mysterious challenges ahead. Feel like going in search of a pasture where your teacher is waiting?

GEMINI (May 21-June 20): Before he died in 1992, avant-garde composer John Cage wrote the score for "As Slow As Possible," a piece of music designed to be played continuously for a long time. No one has ever actually tried it until recently, when a group of musicians and philosophers in Germany began a performance they hope will last for 639 years. Make them your role models as you launch your own long-term project in the coming weeks. It's the ideal time to commit yourself with strategic patience to a labor of love that could take you all your life to master.

CANCER (June 21-July 22): I once knew a talented writer who had four planets in Cancer. With his fertile imagination, nurturing intelligence and articulate artistry, he embodied the best of our tribe. With his narcissism, hypersensitivity to criticism and habit of bearing a grudge, he also had some of our well-known liabilities. It was always a risk hanging out with him; I never knew which facet would be ascendant. I haven't seen him for years, but I hope his sweet genius has found a way to tame his evil twin. If not, the coming weeks will be an ideal astrological time for him and for all Cancerians to win the war within us.

LEO (July 23-Aug. 22): When I ran for president in 1992, one of my campaign promises was an affirmative action program that would make a majority of Americans celebrities by the year 2005. I'm pleased to see that my idea may still come to pass. With the growing popularity of reality TV, from "Joe Millionaire" to "American Idol," increasing numbers of average citizens are getting the chance to bask in the limelight. Your special moment could very well arrive in the next few weeks. You will at least become more widely known, or be gossiped about outrageously.

VIRGO (Aug. 23-Sept. 22): Darien is a 45-year old woman who had a near-death experience when she was 26. "My NDE was exactly like a rebirth," she told me, "so I have wondered for many years whether I really have two charts, one for my original birth and one for my rebirth. If so, which should take precedence?" I congratulated her on how lucky she is to have such a rich mystery to work with and urged her to treat both charts as equally true. Although you won't have anything as dramatic as an NDE in the coming weeks, you will likely experience what amounts to a resurrection. You might consider having another astrological chart drawn up for the official moment of your relaunch.

LIBRA (Sept. 23-Oct. 22): "Dear Dr. Brezsny: Why do you sometimes refer to God as "he"? You of all people know very well that God is both a "he" and "she." Furthermore, "he" has hogged the God references for 2,000 years. The only way to correct the distortion is to always refer to God as "she" for the next 2,000 years. It's payback time, don't you agree? —Libra SuperWoman." Dear SuperWoman: You're absolutely right. From now on, God will be "she" in my column. But don’t take this as license to hate or demean the masculine aspect, either in God or in yourself. Especially now, as pathological expressions of macho run berserk in the world, we need to nurture beautiful forms of virility. In the coming weeks, it will be particularly important for Libras of all genders to reinvent and regenerate their inner male.

SCORPIO (Oct. 23-Nov. 21): Is it global warming? This winter has been even milder than usual in the San Francisco area, where I live. As a result, the roses in my backyard have been blooming nonstop since last April, failing to take their usual sabbatical between October and February. I like it, but it's also a little freaky and creepy — and definitely not a healthy approach for a human being to emulate. So don't be like my unnatural roses. As relentlessly glorious and fascinating as you've been lately, you need to take a break.

SAGITTARIUS (Nov. 22-Dec. 21): In a commercial for a new dream interpretation show on the Sci Fi cable channel, a middle-aged man is planted on a couch, gobbling an oversized sandwich and gazing blankly into a TV. His wife, clad only in black bra and panties, saunters into the living room astride a massive white stallion. The man looks up at her briefly, then returns to his vegetative trance. A voiceover suggests that this is a dream about the wife having needs that the husband is not fulfilling. You will have a comparable dream in the coming week. Both the man and the woman will symbolize aspects of your own life.

CAPRICORN (Dec. 22-Jan. 19): I'm not one of those astrologers who insists on stereotyping you as compulsively cautious, staid, and obsessed with order. In fact, some of the most imaginative and dynamic people I've known have been members of your sign. Still, it's time for me to remind you to take yourself less personally, less seriously and less literally. Here's a quote, courtesy of novelist Tom Robbins, that you should put on your bathroom mirror for the next 10 days: "Humanity has advanced, when it has advanced, not because it has been sober, responsible and cautious, but because it has been playful, rebellious and immature."

AQUARIUS (Jan. 20-Feb. 18): You will soon have the power to see what has been invisible and to decipher codes that have been impenetrable. You'll shed a belief that has been crippling your intelligence, and you'll lose a "friend" who has been undermining your understanding of yourself. And that's not all. Just in time, you will shake yourself free of a curious numbness, allowing you to tune in to feelings that you desperately need to experience. And you will finally find the words to name truths that have been dangerously fuzzy.

PISCES (Feb. 19-March 20): One of the most enduring stories from ancient Greece has been the set of events that legend says occurred at Troy, on the coast of Asia Minor. Yet this epic place, site of Homer's The Iliad, was a village covering only seven acres. Keep that in mind in the coming week. I believe it'll serve as the perfect metaphor for events that are currently unfolding in your own life. A humble patch of ground may become the scene of a mythic turning point. An experience that begins small may be the seed for a story that will achieve monumental importance for you in the years to come. Describe what you're doing to end the war within you at

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