Free Will Astrology


Horoscopes by Rob Brezsny


Week of August 8th, 2013

♈ ARIES

(March 21-April 19)
"You have to participate relentlessly in the manifestation of your own blessings," says author Elizabeth Gilbert. I recommend that you experiment with this subversive idea, Aries. Just for a week, see what happens if you devote yourself to making yourself feel really good. I mean risk going to extremes as you pursue happiness with focused zeal. Try this: Draw up a list of experiences that you know will give you intense pleasure, and indulge in them all without apology. And please don't fret about the possible consequences of getting crazed with joy. Be assured that the cosmos is providing you with more slack than usual.


What fresh blessings will life bring you? What questions should you be asking? To explore the ripening trends further, tune in to your EXPANDED AUDIO HOROSCOPE.

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George III was King of England from 1760 to 1820. During the last years of his reign, he gradually became more and more detached from reality, talking to himself for hours on end and addressing trees as if they were people. When he first began losing his mind, his servants and assistants made a conscious decision to help him feel more comfortable by acting eccentric themselves.

Their collusion with George's pathology is an extreme example of a situation that all of us are at risk of. Our associates and loved ones may fall into a rhythm of going along with our odd ideas and bad habits, encouraging us to continue doing what we probably shouldn't do.

Are your allies refraining from busting you or calling your bluff, when they probably should? Bust yourself. Call your own bluff.
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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.

♉ TAURUS

(April 20-May 20)
"I am not washed and beautiful, in control of a shining world in which everything fits," writes Taurus author Annie Dillard, "but instead am wandering awed about on a splintered wreck I've come to care for, whose gnawed trees breathe a delicate air." I recommend you try on her perspective for size. For now, just forget about scrambling after perfection. At least temporarily, surrender any longing you might have for smooth propriety. Be willing to live without neat containment and polite decorum. Instead, be easy and breezy. Feel a generous acceptance for the messy beauty you're embedded in. Love your life exactly as it is, with all of its paradoxes and mysteries.


Want to explore this chapter of your life story even further? Dig deeper? Push harder? Consider tuning in to your EXPANDED AUDIO HOROSCOPES.

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If a cow is given a name by her owner, she generates more milk than a cow that's treated as an anonymous member of the herd. That's the conclusion of a study done by researchers at Newcastle University in the UK. "Placing more importance on knowing the individual animals and calling them by name," said Dr. Catherine Douglas, "can significantly increase milk production."

Building on that principle, I suggest that you give everything in your world names, including (but not limited to) houseplants, insects, cars, appliances, and trees. It will help you get more up-close and personal with all of creation, which is an effective way to cultivate pronoia.
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The preceding oracle comes from my new book, PRONOIA Is the Antidote for Paranoia: How the Whole World Is Conspiring to Shower You with Blessings.

♊ GEMINI

(May 21-June 20)
Studies show that when you're driving a car, your safest speed is five miles per hour higher than the average rate of traffic. Faster than that, though, and the danger level rises. Traveling more slowly than everyone else on the road also increases your risk of having an accident. Applying these ideas metaphorically, I'd like to suggest you take a similar approach as you weave your way through life's challenges in the coming week. Don't dawdle and plod. Move a little swifter than everyone else, but don't race along at a breakneck pace.


You're got more strength and intelligence than you realize. For help in accessing those untapped inner resources, tune in to your EXPANDED AUDIO HOROSCOPE.

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Sometimes the best gift you can give your ego is to tell it you're not going to be its slave anymore. You say to it, "I'm tired of being whipped around by every one of your ever-shifting little needs, and I'm sick of having to kowtow to your inexhaustible demands. I want to be free of your insatiable craving to be appreciated, recognized, and adored. Go away and leave me alone. I'm just going to be who I am without worrying about you at all."

Delivering this message may stimulate a healing crisis. Your ego could be temporarily rendered numb and irrelevant by its near death experience, and you'll get to go off and do what your soul wants to do.

Tell your ego you won't be its slave for a period of three days.
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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.

♋ CANCERIAN

(June 21-July 22)
The key theme this week is relaxed intensification. Your assignment, should you choose to accept it, is to heighten and strengthen your devotion to things that are important to you -- but in ways that make you feel more serene and self-possessed. To accomplish this, you will have to ignore the conventional wisdom, which falsely asserts that going deeper and giving more of yourself require you to increase your stress levels. You do indeed have a great potential for going deeper and giving more of yourself, but only if you also become more at peace with yourself and more at home in the world.


How are you going to change what needs to be changed and accept what needs to be accepted? To get some support from me, tune in to your EXPANDED AUDIO HOROSCOPE.

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In American psychotherapy, the first question many practitioners ask their new clients is essentially, "What did your parents do to you to mess you up so badly?" One of my Japanese friends tells me that in his country, a therapist is more likely to ask, "What did your parents do for you? How did they nurture and support you?"

Without dismissing the possibility that your mom and dad did inflict damage on you, I'll ask you to concentrate on the Japanese-style inquiry for now. What are the best things that happened to you when you were growing up? What did your family and community give you that you've never fully appreciated?
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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.

♌ LEO

(July 23-August 22)
Last year a young Nebraskan entrepreneur changed his name from Tyler Gold to Tyrannosaurus Rex Gold. He said it was a way of giving him greater name recognition as he worked to build his career. Do you have any interest in making a bold move like that, Leo? The coming weeks would be a good time for you to think about adding a new twist to your nickname or title or self-image. But I recommend something less sensationalistic and more in line with the qualities you'd actually like to cultivate in the future. I'm thinking of something like Laughing Tiger or Lucky Lion or Wily Wildcat.


Sometimes it's a challenge to try to figure out what's important and what's not important. If you'd like more of my input, tune in to your EXPANDED AUDIO HOROSCOPE.

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Beauty and Truth Lab researcher Beth had a dream that she and her tribe were living peacefully at the foot of a mountain. Without warning, fiery ash and lava erupted. Everyone fled, desperate to escape. But before she had gone far, Beth heard a voice in her head say, "Run toward the volcano; it's your only safety." Feeling an inexplicable trust in the voice, she turned around and started heading back, whereupon the dream ended and she woke up. Soon after getting out of bed, she felt moved to face up to a certain dilemma she'd been ignoring in her waking life. When she solved the problem a day later, she felt gratitude for the dream that had spurred her to do the right thing: Run toward the volcano.
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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.

♍ VIRGO

(August 23-September 22)
African-American jazz singer Billie Holiday was the great-granddaughter of a slave. By the time she was born in 1915, black people in the American South were no longer "owned" by white "masters," but their predicament was still extreme. Racism was acute and debilitating. Here's what Billie wrote in her autobiography: "You can be up to your boobies in white satin, with gardenias in your hair and no sugar cane for miles, but you can still be working on a plantation." Nothing you experience is remotely as oppressive as what Billie experienced, Virgo. But I'm wondering if you might suffer from a milder version of it. Is any part of you oppressed and inhibited even though your outward circumstances are technically unconstrained? If so, now's the time to push for more freedom.


How well is your imagination working these days? Could it use a boost? A prod? A jolt of inspiration? Try tuning in to your EXPANDED AUDIO HOROSCOPE.

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"Virgo rules the intestines, where digestion is completed, and where the final selection is made between assimilable material and what is rejected as waste." So said my best teacher, Paul Foster Case, in his book The Tarot. I could write reams on this subject, but here's a start: Digestion is a central metaphor in every Virgo's life. How can you thoroughly extract what's truly useful from every experience you take in? Do you have a passion for understanding the difference between what will nourish you and what should be flushed away? Are you committed to the work of keeping your intestines healthy, knowing this is crucial to maintaining your mental hygiene?
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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.

♎ LIBRA

(September 23-October 22)
What resounding triumphs and subtle transformations have you accomplished since your last birthday? How have you grown and changed? Are there any ways you have dwindled or drooped? The next few weeks will be an excellent time to take inventory of these things. Your own evaluations will be most important, of course. You've got to be the ultimate judge of your own character. But you should also solicit the feedback of people you trust. They may be able to help you see clues you've missed. If, after weighing all the evidence, you decide you're pleased with how your life has unfolded these past ten to eleven months, I suggest you celebrate your success. Throw yourself a party or buy yourself a reward or climb to the top of a mountain and unleash a victory cry.


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

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As a boy, renowned Spanish matador Manolete was a sissy. He rarely played outside, preferring to be near his mother as he read books and painted pictures.

Psychologist James Hillman explains this by suggesting that the youthful Manolete had already sensed his destiny, intuiting that one day he would be alone in the ring facing down angry 2,000-pound bulls. His childhood behavior was a way of marshaling his strength and shielding him from the enormity of the challenges he would seek out one day.

Is it possible that what you have considered a weakness or vulnerability has actually been preparing you to express a signature strength?
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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.

♏ SCORPIO

(October 23-November 21)
Monmouth Park in New Jersey hosts regular horse races from May through November. During one such event in 2010, a horse named Thewifenoseeverything finished first, just ahead of another nag named Thewifedoesntknow. I suspect that there'll be a comparable outcome in your life sometime soon. Revelation will trump secrecy. Whoever is hiding information will lose out to anyone who sees and expresses the truth. I advise you to bet on the option that's forthcoming and communicative, not the one that's furtive and withholding.


How much do you want to know about your life? How far do you dare to go in your quest for self-mastery? For more insight into your intriguing fate, tune in to your EXPANDED AUDIO HOROSCOPE.

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Sometimes we have a strong sense of what our destiny is calling us to do, but we don't feel quite ready or brave enough to answer the call. We need a push, an intervention, a serendipitous stroke -- what you might call "fate bait." It's a person or event that awakens our dormant willpower and draws us inexorably toward our necessary destiny; it's a thunderbolt or siren song or stage whisper that gives us a good excuse to go do what we know we should do.

Do you have any ideas about how to put yourself in the vicinity of your fate bait?
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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.

♐ SAGITTARIUS

(November 22-December 21)
You have both a poetic and a cosmic license to stretch yourself further. It's best not to go too far, of course. You should stop yourself before you obliterate all boundaries and break all taboos and smash all precedents. But you've certainly got the blessings of fate if you seek to disregard some boundaries and shatter some taboos and outgrow some precedents. While you're at it, you might also want to shed a few pinched expectations and escape an irrelevant limitation or two. It's time to get as big and brave and brazen as you dare.


Would you like to hear more about the hidden factors influencing your life? Do you want to uncover the secrets you've been hiding even from yourself? Listen to your EXPANDED AUDIO HOROSCOPE.

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During my years in college, I enjoyed watching the evolution of Richard, a shy geek in my creative writing classes. Long before he penned a single good poem, he was a bohemian art poseur. On his backpack there was a button with the image of rock poet Patti Smith. He often wore a T-shirt bearing a quote from poetry icon Allen Ginsberg, and he was never without his book of Rimbaud poems. Everywhere I went I saw him scribbling ostentatiously in his journal as he chain-smoked clove cigarettes.

To my surprise, Richard's work gradually began to match his persona. By sophomore year he'd spawned some evocative poems, and soon after he graduated, he published a fine chapbook. In his development I witnessed a perfect example of the saying, "You become what you pretend to be."

Your assignment: Decide what you want to become, and start pretending to be that thing. Or else: Be careful what you're unconsciously pretending to be, because you just might become it.
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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.

♑ CAPRICORN

(December 22-January 19)
When I was 19, a thug shot me in the butt with a shotgun at close range. To this day, my body contains the 43 pellets he pumped into me. They have caused some minor health problems, and I'm always queasy when I see a gun. But I don't experience any routine suffering from the wound. Its original impact no longer plagues me. What's your own personal equivalent of my trauma, Capricorn? A sickness that racked you when you were young? A difficult break-up with your first love? The death of someone you cared about? Whatever it was, I suspect you now have the power to reach a new level of freedom from that old pain.


Do you wish you could get more clarity about the foggy, ambiguous situations you're dealing with? 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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In his book Starbucked, Taylor Clark says there's a woman who goes to a Seattle Starbucks every morning and orders a "decaf single grande extra vanilla two-percent extra caramel 185-degrees with whipped cream caramel macchiato."

Maybe her request seems overly fussy and demanding, but it could be a good act for you to mimic. Try this: For a given time, say 12 days, be equally as exacting in asking for what you want. Assume that you have a poetic license to be extremely specific as you go about your quest for fulfillment.
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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.

♒ AQUARIUS

(January 20- February 18)
Want to take full advantage of the sexy vibes that are swirling around in your vicinity? One thing you could do is whisper the following provocations in the ear of anyone who would respond well to a dose of boisterous magic: 1) "Corrupt me with your raw purity, baby; beguile me with your raucous honesty." 2) "I finally figured out that one of the keys to eternal happiness is to be easily amused. Want me to show you how that works?" 3) "I dare you to quench my thirst for spiritual sensuality." 4) "Let's trade clothes and pretend we're each other's higher selves."


Do you want further explorations of the intriguing twists and turns of your personal evolution? Would you like help in solving the riddles that confuse you? Check out your EXPANDED AUDIO HOROSCOPE.

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"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!"

Experiment with just the second half of that formulation. 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.
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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.

♓ PISCES

(February 19-March 20)
Some people put their faith in religion or science or political ideologies. English novelist J.G. Ballard placed his faith elsewhere: in the imagination. "I believe in the power of the imagination to remake the world," he wrote, "to release the truth within us, to hold back the night, to transcend death, to charm motorways, to ingratiate ourselves with birds, to enlist the confidences of madmen." As you make your adjustments and reconfigure your plans, Pisces, I suggest you put your faith where Ballard did. Your imagination is far more potent and dynamic than you realize -- especially right now.


Need more help in figuring out the questions life is asking you? Crave more support in your efforts to build your courage? Check out your EXPANDED AUDIO HOROSCOPE.

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There was an indignant uproar after revelations in 2006 that James Frey's best-selling "memoir" A Million Little Pieces contains fabrications. He hadn't actually lived all of the experiences he depicted therein.

Hearing about it prompted me to ruminate on whether there's any such thing as a completely accurate account of any person's life. My conclusion: no.

In every autobiography and biography ever written, the author imaginatively strings together selectively chosen details to conjure up artificially coherent narratives rather than depicting the crazy-quilt ambiguity that actually characterizes everyone's journey.

If you and nine writers set out to tell your life story, you'd produce 10 wildly different tales, each rife with subjective interpretation, misplaced emphasis, unintentional distortions, and exorbitant extrapolations from insufficient data.

Celebrate the malleability of reality. Regale listeners with stories about the time you worked as a pirate in the Indian Ocean, or rode the rails through Kansas as a hobo, or gave a down-on-his-luck CIA agent sage advice in an elevator. When you call to get pizza delivered and the clerk who takes your order asks your name, say you're Brad Pitt or Paris Hilton. When someone you're meeting is annoyed because you're late, say you couldn't help it because you were smoking crack in the bus station bathroom with your mom's guru and lost track of time. If asked how much education you have, say you have three PhDs, one each in astrobiology, Russian literature, and whale songs.
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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.

© Rob Brezsny 1995-2019