Free Will Astrology


Horoscopes by Rob Brezsny


Week of July 24th, 2008

♈ ARIES

(March 21-April 19)
Anna Renalda Hyatt, a reader from Colorado, bragged to me about her prowess. "My capacity for expressing love far surpasses that of anyone I have ever met," she wrote. "I am a Sublime Genius of Love, a Master of Unconditional Compassion, a Virtuoso of Deep Empathy." Your assignment in the coming days, Aries, is to compete with her: Unleash a perfect storm of ingenious passion that will ignite subtle revolutions everywhere you go. Explore the frontiers of smart love.


How much do you want to know about your destiny? How far do you dare to go? For more insight into your intriguing fate, tune in to your EXPANDED AUDIO HOROSCOPE for the week ahead.

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At the heart of the pronoiac way of life is an apparent conundrum: You can have anything you want if you'll just ask for it in an unselfish way. The trick to making this work is to locate where your deepest ambition coincides with the greatest gift you have to give. Figure out how the universe, by providing you with abundance, can improve the lot of everyone whose life you touch. Seek the fulfillment of your fondest desires in such a way that you become a fount of blessings.
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The preceding oracle comes from my book, PRONOIA Is the Antidote for Paranoia: How the Whole World Is Conspiring to Shower You with Blessings. It's available at Amazon or Powells.

♉ TAURUS

(April 20-May 20)
Your teeth aren't white enough. Your laugh sounds weird. Something's amiss with the way you solve problems; I'm not sure what, I just know you've got a disability there. And as for your hair: Could you please change it so it doesn't make you appear so out of touch with reality? OK, now relax. Everything I just said was a bad joke -- it wasn't true at all. I wanted to show you how susceptible you are to believing the lie that you should be different from what you actually are. The fact is, Taurus, this is an excellent time for you to practice feeling a total acceptance of and curious fascination with yourself. Try saying this out loud: "I am perfectly myself."


Want more help in exploring the Great Mystery that is your life? I discuss your coming week in greater depth in your EXPANDED AUDIO HOROSCOPE.

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Every January 1, many people make New Year's resolutions, promising to embark on programs of self-improvement. But your assignment now, should you choose to accept it, is to create a list of ANTI-resolutions.

Here are some questions to guide you: 1. What outlandish urges and controversial tendencies do you promise to cultivate in the coming months? 2. What nagging irritations will you ignore and avoid with even greater ingenuity? 3. What problems do you promise to exploit in order to have even more fun as you make the status quo accountable for its corruption? 4. What boring rules and traditions will you thumb your nose at, paving the way for exciting encounters with strange attractors?
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The preceding oracle comes from my book, PRONOIA Is the Antidote for Paranoia: How the Whole World Is Conspiring to Shower You with Blessings. It's available at Amazon or Powells.

♊ GEMINI

(May 21-June 20)
At the end of a recent school year, only 37 percent of New York's high school students passed the state-administered math exam. Instead of withholding diplomas from the other 63 percent, officials nullified the results and eased the standards for future tests. Normally I'm queasy about lowering the criteria for success, but in this case I approve. Math is absurdly overvalued as an educational necessity. There are many other subjects that should get more emphasis in the high school curriculum. Teach logic, not algebra! Teach critical thinking, not trigonometry! My rant is a prelude to the climax of your horoscope, which is this: Stop pushing so hard to accomplish a task that's really not all that important in the long run.


Want more clues? Need further insight? For more evocative questions and pithy suggestions about your destiny, check out your EXPANDED AUDIO HOROSCOPE for the week ahead.

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Speak the following lines out loud:
I love everything about me
I love my uncanny beauty and my bewildering pain
I love my hungry soul and my wounded longing
I love my flaws, my fears, and my scary frontiers

I will never forsake, betray, or deceive myself
I will always adore, forgive, and believe in myself
I will never refuse, abandon, or scorn myself
I will always amuse, delight, and redeem myself
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The preceding oracle comes from my book, PRONOIA Is the Antidote for Paranoia: How the Whole World Is Conspiring to Shower You with Blessings. It's available at Amazon or Powells.

♋ CANCERIAN

(June 21-July 22)
During a trip to India, my friend Jeff paid a boatman to row him out into the Ganges River for a little recreational cruise. When they got there, the boatman stopped and refused to move, let alone row him back to shore, unless Jeff forked over a surcharge. Don't let something like that happen to you in the coming week, Cancerian. Always have a well-planned arrangement, agreed on in advance, to come back from wherever you're brave enough to go. Be experimental, yes. Explore new territory, yes. Be willing to surrender some control, yes. But make sure you've got a return ticket.


Want to hear more about the hidden factors influencing your life? Listen to your EXPANDED AUDIO HOROSCOPE for the week ahead.

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What if the Creator is like Rainer Maria Rilke's God, "like a webbing made of a hundred roots, that drink in silence"? What if the Source of All Life inhabits both the dark and the light, heals with strange splendor as much as with sweet insight, is hermaphroditic and omnisexual? What if the Source loves to give you riddles that push you past the boundaries of your understanding, forcing you to deepen your perceptions and change the way you think about everything? Close your eyes and imagine you can sense the presence of this tender, marvelous, difficult, entertaining intelligence.
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The preceding oracle comes from my book, PRONOIA Is the Antidote for Paranoia: How the Whole World Is Conspiring to Shower You with Blessings. It's available at Amazon or Powells.

♌ LEO

(July 23-August 22)
"Everybody experiences far more than he understands," said philosopher Marshall McLuhan. "Yet it is experience, rather than understanding, that influences behavior." This is always true, but it will have special meaning for you in the coming days. You're about to be inundated by a flood of raw perceptions, sensations, and feelings, and only a fraction of it will be namable, let alone comprehensible. That shouldn't be a problem, though. Your job is simply to marvel at all the novelty that's flowing in, not to be in an anxious hurry to define it.


What blessings will life bring you? What challenges will you be invited to dive into? To explore the ripening trends further, tune in to your EXPANDED AUDIO HOROSCOPE for the week ahead.

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For some seekers, spiritual enlightenment is the ultimate commodity. They believe that through diligent meditation and self-improvement, there will come a day when it will no longer elude their grasp. Breaking through to the singular state of cosmic consciousness, they will forever after own it, free and clear. Permanently illuminated! Never to backslide into the dull ignominy of normal human awareness!

Here's what I have to say about that: It's a delusion.

The fact is, the nature of perfection is always mutating. What constitutes enlightenment today will always be different tomorrow. Even if you're fortunate and wise enough to score a sliver of "enlightenment," it's not a static treasure that becomes your indestructible, everlasting possession. Rather, it remains a mercurial knack that must be continually re-earned.

If you want to befriend the Divine Wow, you must not only be willing to change ceaselessly—you have to love to change ceaselessly.

Lucky you: All of creation is conspiring to help you live like that.
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The preceding oracle comes from my book, PRONOIA Is the Antidote for Paranoia: How the Whole World Is Conspiring to Shower You with Blessings. It's available at Amazon or Powells.

♍ VIRGO

(August 23-September 22)
Your life story is about to deepen and sweeten and get more interesting -- if, that is, you follow the trail of clues into the dark forest, and if, as you travel, you hum songs that are both sad and happy, and if you call on the spirit of your favorite dead person to accompany you. Of course, you're perfectly free to refuse the call of your destiny, and never even take a glance into the dark forest. But in my opinion, that would cheat you out of some profound fun that has the potential to teach you and tune you for many years to come.


Need a few more whacks applied to your mental blocks? A few more caresses administered to your growing edge? Cruise on over to your EXPANDED AUDIO HOROSCOPE for the week ahead.

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The Golden Rule is a decent ethical principle, but it could be even better. "Do unto others as you would have them do unto you" presumes that others enjoy what you enjoy. But that's wrong. There are many things you'd like to have done unto you that others would either despise or be bored by. Here's a new, improved formulation, which we call the Platinum Rule: Do unto others as they would like to have you do unto them.

Using this improved formula is not just a virtuous way to live, but is also the best way to ensure the success of your selfish goals. The rituals and spells of various occult orders purport to be supercharged techniques for imposing your personal will on the chaotic flow of events, but I say that practicing the Platinum Rule outstrips all of them as an exercise to enhance your power and happiness.
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The preceding oracle comes from my book, PRONOIA Is the Antidote for Paranoia: How the Whole World Is Conspiring to Shower You with Blessings. It's available at Amazon or Powells.

♎ LIBRA

(September 23-October 22)
I came across a website called "The Common Man's Book of World Records." It lists triumphs that have been ignored by the more famous Guinness Book. It tells us that Basel Nevins licked an asphalt road for 77 minutes straight, establishing an unsurpassed benchmark. Melissa Lassitter set the world record for number of hoagies crammed into a bra, with eight; Glen Schlacknik did an astounding 5,216 squat-thrusts on an escalator in one session; and Charles Zenk threw a mailbox 33 feet. In the coming week, I invite you to be inspired by these unsung masters, Libra. According to my reading of the omens, you're primed to achieve peaks of accomplishment that few others have even attempted.


Where do you want to go? Who do you want to be? For more clues, tune in to your EXPANDED AUDIO HOROSCOPE for the week ahead.

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HELP WANTED. Practical dreamers with high emotional intelligence needed to become experts in the following subjects: the art of possessing abundant resources without feeling greed or a sense of superiority; the science of cultivating luxurious comfort in a way that does not lead to spiritual sloth; and a knack for enjoying peace and serenity without diluting one's ambition.
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The preceding oracle comes from my book, PRONOIA Is the Antidote for Paranoia: How the Whole World Is Conspiring to Shower You with Blessings. It's available at Amazon or Powells.

♏ SCORPIO

(October 23-November 21)
According to Jewish legend, there are in each generation 36 righteous humans who prevent the rest of us from being destroyed. Through their extraordinary good deeds and their love of the divine spark, they save the world over and over again. They're not famous saints, though. They go about their business anonymously, and no one knows how crucial they are to our well-being. Might you be one of the 36? I bet you'll be acting like one of them in the coming week. Your capacity for disseminating blessings will be astounding. The ripples of benevolence you initiate could ultimately go around the planet and return to you.


Do you want further explorations of the intriguing twists and turns of your personal evolution? Check out your EXPANDED AUDIO HOROSCOPE for the week ahead.

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Most religions designate a special class of people—priests, rabbis, ayatollahs—to oversee official communications with the Source. This has led to a prevailing assumption, even among those who don't follow an established faith, that we can't initiate a divine conversation without the aid of a professional class of trained mediators. Among some sects of the ancient gnostics, in contrast, everyone was regarded as a potential prophet who could experience epiphanies worthy of becoming part of the ever-evolving doctrine.

As you create your own spiritual path, experiment with this approach. What might you do to eliminate the middleman and commune directly with the Source?

Name the ways you already use this approach, and brainstorm about others you might like to try.
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The preceding oracle comes from my book, PRONOIA Is the Antidote for Paranoia: How the Whole World Is Conspiring to Shower You with Blessings. It's available at Amazon or Powells.

♐ SAGITTARIUS

(November 22-December 21)
In his book The Medusa and the Snail, science writer Lewis Thomas said that the English word "error" developed from a root meaning "to wander about, looking for something." That's why he liked Darwin's idea that error is the driving force in evolution. I think this wandering-about-looking-for-something approach should be the driving force in your personal evolution, Sagittarius. The coming weeks will be a great time to meander and get distracted and stumble upon unexpected opportunities. May all your mutations have a positive spin! (P.S. Lewis also wrote this: "The capacity to blunder slightly is the real marvel of DNA. Without this special attribute, we would still be anaerobic bacteria and there would be no music.")


Need more help with your riddles? Crave more support in your efforts to build your courage? Check out your EXPANDED AUDIO HOROSCOPE for the week ahead.

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Review in painstaking detail the history of your life, honoring every moment as if you were conducting a benevolent Judgment Day.

Forgive yourself of every mistake except one.

Create a royal crown for yourself out of a shower cap, rubber bands, and light bulbs.

Think of the last place on earth you'd ever want to visit, and visualize yourself having fun there.

Test to see if people are really listening to you by asserting that Karl Marx was one of the Marx Brothers.

Steal lint from dryers in laundromats and use it to make animal sculptures for someone you admire.

Fantasize you're the child of divine parents who abandoned you when you were two days old, but who will soon be coming back to reunite with you.

Meditate on how one of the symbols of plenitude in Nepal is a mongoose vomiting jewels.

Once a year on the day before your birthday, say these words into a mirror: "It's bad luck to be superstitious."

Start a club whose purpose is to produce an archive of controversial jokes and obscene limericks about beauty, truth, and love.
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The preceding oracle comes from my book, PRONOIA Is the Antidote for Paranoia: How the Whole World Is Conspiring to Shower You with Blessings. It's available at Amazon or Powells.

♑ CAPRICORN

(December 22-January 19)
I predict you will have 32 dreams as you sleep in the coming week. In at least five of those adventures, you will be offered a chance to wield a magic hammer like the one that belonged to the Norse god Thor. You're under no obligation to use it, of course. But if you do, it could help you smite dream adversaries, from stupid giants to evil ducks to rash-covered devils. You could also take advantage of it to build things, like a dream house or a dream boat. The proper use of the hammer will be a constant test, since you'll have to be ever-alert and adaptable as you decide whether to employ it for destruction or creation.


No one knows you better than you do. But maybe you'll be inspired to dig up even more self-knowledge if you tune in to your EXPANDED AUDIO HOROSCOPE for the week ahead.

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Say this: "Novel intuitions are now erupting from my smart heart, awakening me from any trance I've been ensnared in. I am hereby breaking and escaping obstructions that have hindered my ability to express my soul's code. All of my unique capacities are being unleashed, all of my potentials activated. I recognize that I'm a miraculous work of art, a masterpiece unlike any other ever created in the history of the world."

Say this: "I am a genius. I am a lucky plucky good-sucking genius."
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The preceding oracle comes from my book, PRONOIA Is the Antidote for Paranoia: How the Whole World Is Conspiring to Shower You with Blessings. It's available at Amazon or Powells.

♒ AQUARIUS

(January 20- February 18)
"Why, I don't even respect myself, I tell ya," said comedian Rodney Dangerfield. "When I make love, I have to fantasize that I am somebody else!" Your assignment, Aquarius, is to experiment with just the second half of that formulation. In other words, while you're making love, fantasize that you're somebody else. But do it because you care deeply about yourself -- so deeply that you want to transcend your customary reactions and expand your identity. Do it because you dare to awaken to previously unknown possibilities of who you might be. By the way, this exercise will yield even better results if you not only play with experimental self-images when you're doing the wild thing, but all the rest of the time as well.


What greater adventure is there than exploring the enigmas of your unique destiny? For more hints, listen to your EXPANDED AUDIO HOROSCOPE for the week ahead.

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Since 1994, Mexico's Zapatistas have evolved from a small guerrilla army fighting for the rights of indigenous people to an international cultural force whose battles are mostly waged with symbols and words. The Zapatista leader, who goes by the pseudonym Subcomandante Marcos, always appears in public wearing a mask. Every 12 months or so, his old mask wears out and he has to replace it with a fresh one.

I think this would be a good standard for all of us to live up to: to molt our personas, or social masks, at least once a year. It's that time for you.
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The preceding oracle comes from my book, PRONOIA Is the Antidote for Paranoia: How the Whole World Is Conspiring to Shower You with Blessings. It's available at Amazon or Powells.

♓ PISCES

(February 19-March 20)
In her book Zen Miracles, Brenda Shoshanna defines the "shadow" as being the unacceptable aspects of ourselves that we dump into our unconscious minds. As we avoid looking at that hidden stuff, it festers. Meanwhile, we project it onto people we know, imagining that they possess the qualities we're repressing. The antidote to this problem, says Shoshanna, is to "eat our shadow" -- haul it up from out of the pit and develop a conscious connection with it. Doing so not only prevents our unacknowledged darkness from haunting our thoughts and distorting our relationships; it also liberates tremendous psychic energy. I'm telling you this, Pisces, because it's an excellent time to eat your shadow.


Got enough clues to chew on for a while? If you need more, give yourself the luxury of your EXPANDED AUDIO HOROSCOPE for the week ahead.

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In some spiritual traditions, devotees attempt an arduous process of self-transformation as they retrain themselves to perceive the world from God's point of view. If they succeed, they're honored with an initiation ritual and given a new name to consecrate their altered state.

I have the same problem with this custom that I have with the idea of enlightenment: Once isn’t enough. Just as anyone in his or her right spiritual mind has a duty to keep claiming fresh varieties of enlightenment until the end of time, so should the initiations and renamings continue forever.

In my opinion, these considerations apply to you. You may not have sequestered yourself for years in a mountaintop monastery, and you may not have risen every morning at 5 a.m. to say prayers for hours, but you are an authentic devotee who has undergone equivalent ordeals. Your spiritual transformation has unfolded as you've dealt with the challenges of daily life during our epic moment in history, when unprecedented levels of annihilation and resurrection are the norm.

You have earned the right, therefore, to enjoy enlightenment after enlightenment and initiation after initiation and renaming after renaming.

I invite you to get started with a do-it-yourself initiation ceremony. It doesn't have to be long and complicated, and you can create it yourself. As an example of what you might do, here's a ritual that some Beauty and Truth Laboratory's initiates have performed: 1. Eat a pinch of dirt to declare your solidarity with Mother Earth. 2. Burn a five-dollar bill to purify your relationship with symbols of wealth. 3. Kick yourself in the ass to affirm your ongoing intention to discipline your shadow.

As one of your initiatory rewards, consider adopting a fresh alias during this and every initiation you carry out in the future. You can abandon your existing name if you want, or simply add your new tag to the current mix.

To celebrate the occasion, I invoke on your behalf the inspiration of all shedding things. Your tree of power will be the eucalyptus, whose bark peels away to reveal fresh layers beneath. Your lucky symbol will be the molting snake. Your sacred insect will be the silverfish, which bursts through its exoskeleton as it grows a new and bigger one. Your role model will be Japanese artist Hokusai (1760–1849), who had such a passionate commitment to reinventing himself that he celebrated 60 births, each time giving himself a new name.
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The preceding oracle comes from my book, PRONOIA Is the Antidote for Paranoia: How the Whole World Is Conspiring to Shower You with Blessings. It's available at Amazon or Powells.

© Rob Brezsny 1995-2019