Free Will Astrology


Horoscopes by Rob Brezsny


Week of March 17th, 2016

♈ ARIES

(March 21-April 19)
Artist Steven Spazuk works exclusively with an unusual medium: soot from candles and torches. He spreads the stuff across a blank canvas, then uses various instruments to sculpt the accidental blobs into definitive forms. I've seen the results, and they're both well-done and intriguing. What would be the metaphorical equivalent, in your world, of using soot to make beautiful and interesting things? I think you're primed to turn waste into building blocks, rot into splendor, and lead into gold. (See Spazuk's work.)

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No one knows you better than you do, but maybe I can help you dig up even more self-knowledge. Listen to your EXPANDED AUDIO HOROSCOPE.

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SACRED ADVERTISEMENT. The oracle below is from my book PRONOIA Is the Antidote for Paranoia: How the Whole World Is Conspiring to Shower You with Blessings.
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Dear Goddess: Please make it immoral, illegal, irrelevant, unpatriotic, and totally tasteless for us to be in love with anyone or anything that's no good for us.

Teach us to know the difference between oppressive self-control and liberating self-control.

Awaken in us the power to do the half-right thing when it is impossible to do the totally right thing . . . .

Read or hear the rest of the Goddess Prayer.

♉ TAURUS

(April 20-May 20)
Carl Sagan said that science thrives on "two seemingly contradictory attitudes: an openness to new ideas, no matter how bizarre or counterintuitive, and the most ruthless skeptical scrutiny of all ideas, old and new." Whether or not you are a scientist, Taurus, I recommend that you practice this approach in the coming weeks. It's the tool that's most likely to keep you centered and free of both rigidity and illusion. As Sagan concluded, this is "how deep truths are winnowed from deep nonsense."

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Wouldn't you love to learn more about who you really are? What better adventure is there than learning about your soul's code? For more hints, listen to your EXPANDED AUDIO HOROSCOPE.

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SACRED ADVERTISEMENT. The oracle below is from my book PRONOIA Is the Antidote for Paranoia: How the Whole World Is Conspiring to Shower You with Blessings.
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I love you I love me I love you and me together

I love us I love them I love us and them together

Rilke said: "For one human being to love another is the most difficult task. It's the work for which all other work is mere preparation."

Teillard de Chardin said: "Some day after we have mastered the winds, the waves and gravity, we will harness for God the energies of love; and then for a second time in the history of the world, humans will have discovered fire."

Leo Tolstoy said: "Everything I understand, I understand only because I love."

Pascal said: "If you do not love too much, you do not love enough."

Emily Dickinson said: "Until you have loved, you cannot become yourself."

You and I say: Because we love Ruby-throated hummingbirds sip from plum flowers and the moon sings its silver fragrance to the swans and volcanoes and fields of wheat . . . .

Hear or read the rest of this meditation.

♊ GEMINI

(May 21-June 20)
"Excess on occasion is exhilarating," said British author W. Somerset Maugham. "It prevents moderation from acquiring the deadening effect of a habit." Now would be an excellent time to take that advice to heart, Gemini. According to my analysis of the astrological omens, you not only have a license to engage in rowdy fun and extravagant pleasures; it's your sacred duty. So get out there and treat yourself to an orgy of naughty adventures -- or at least a celebration of meaningful thrills. You can return to the rigors of discipline and order once you have harvested the healthy benefits that will come from escaping them.

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I hope the oracle above provides you with the inspiration you need to do what you've got to do and change what needs to be changed. But if you need more clues, listen to your EXPANDED AUDIO HOROSCOPE, where I go further in exploring your mysteries.

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SACRED ADVERTISEMENT. The oracle below is from my book PRONOIA Is the Antidote for Paranoia: How the Whole World Is Conspiring to Shower You with Blessings.
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Celebrate Unhappy Hour at least once a month. During this ritual blowout, you have license to complain and rant about everything that's driving you crazy. Get a sympathetic listener to be your receptacle or deliver your blast straight into the mirror. If you prefer, write it all down. One way or another, grouse nonstop about your secret shame, raw sorrow, bottomless wrath, unspeakable guilt, and unnerving twists of destiny. Feel free to unleash guttural moans or rueful cackles.

If performed regularly, Unhappy Hour serves as an exorcism that empties you of psychic toxins. Pronoia will then have a chance to flourish as you luxuriate more frequently in rosy moods and broad-minded visions.

To hear or read the rest of the Unhappy Hour ritual, go here.

♋ CANCERIAN

(June 21-July 22)
At one point in Friedrich Nietzsche's book Thus Spoke Zarathustra, the hero is having a conversation with himself. "You have wanted to pet every monster," he says. "A whiff of warm breath, a little soft tuft on the paw -- and at once you were ready to love and to lure it." If I were you, Cancerian, I would regard that type of behavior as forbidden in the coming weeks. In fact, I will ask you not to pet any monsters at all -- not even the cute ones; not even the beasties and rascals and imps that have slight resemblances to monsters. It's time for maximum discernment and caution. (P.S.: One of the monsters may ultimately become a non-monstrous ally if you are wary toward it now.)

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For more help in understanding your relationship with the game of life, tune in to your EXPANDED AUDIO HOROSCOPE.

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SACRED ADVERTISEMENT. The oracle below is from my book PRONOIA Is the Antidote for Paranoia: How the Whole World Is Conspiring to Shower You with Blessings.
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This is a perfect time for you to learn more about the difference between your fearful fantasies and your authentic, accurate intuitions.

Knowing the difference is one of the greatest spiritual powers you can possible have. So let's explore what it means: knowing the difference between the frightening, alienating pictures that sometimes pop into your imagination, as opposed the simple, warm, clear direction that is always available from the deepest source within you.

To hear or read the rest of the essay "Fear Versus Intuition,"go here.

♌ LEO

(July 23-August 22)
On a social media site, I posted the following quote from self-help teacher Byron Katie: "Our job is unconditional love. The job of everyone else in our life is to push our buttons." One commenter took issue with this. "'Pushing buttons' is a metaphor that's long past its expiration date," she wrote. "Can't you come up with something fresher?" So I did. Here are a few potential substitutes for "push our buttons": "tweak our manias" . . . "prank our obsessions" . . . "glitter-bomb our biases" . . . "squeeze our phobias" . . . "badger our compulsions" . . . "seduce our repressions" . . . "prick our dogmas." Whichever expression you prefer, Leo, find a graceful way to embrace your fate: Your current job is unconditional love. The job of everyone else in your life is to tweak your manias and prick your dogmas.

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Would you like further inspiration as you scheme and dream to make the most of life's sometimes puzzling opportunities? Listen to your EXPANDED AUDIO HOROSCOPE.

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SACRED ADVERTISEMENT. The oracle below is from my book PRONOIA Is the Antidote for Paranoia: How the Whole World Is Conspiring to Shower You with Blessings.
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Thousands of things go right for you every day, beginning the moment you wake up. The vast majority of everything is working with breathtaking efficiency and consistency.

Read or hear more about why this is true.

♍ VIRGO

(August 23-September 22)
In the coming weeks, you will have maximum power to revise and reinvigorate your approach to cultivating intimate relationships. To aid your quest, I offer this paraphrased advice from Andrew Boyd: Almost every one of us seeks a special partner who is just right. But there is no right person, just different flavors of wrong. Why? Because you yourself are "wrong" in some ways -- you have demons and flaws and problems. In fact, these "wrongs" are essential components of who you are. When you ripen into this understanding, you're ready to find and be with your special counterpart. He or she has the precise set of problems you need -- is the person who is wrong for you in just the right ways. (See Boyd's original quote.)

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What exactly are you looking for? How would you describe the experiences you want more than anything else? It's possible my EXPANDED AUDIO HOROSCOPE could give you additional help in figuring that out.

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SACRED ADVERTISEMENT. The oracle below is from my book PRONOIA Is the Antidote for Paranoia: How the Whole World Is Conspiring to Shower You with Blessings.
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Life is a vast and intricate conspiracy that's guaranteed to keep you well supplied with blessings.

What kind of blessings? Ten million dollars, a gorgeous physique, a perfect marriage, a luxurious home, and high status?

Maybe. But it's just as likely that the blessings will be interesting surprises, dizzying adventures, gifts you hardly know what to do with, and conundrums that dare you to get smarter.

Novelist William Vollman referred to these types of blessings when he said that "the most important and enjoyable thing in life is grappling with a complicated, tricky problem that you don't know how to solve."

Sculptor Henry Moore had a similar idea. He said, "The secret of life is to have a task, something you devote your entire life to, something you bring everything to, every minute of the day for your whole life. And the most important thing is -- it must be something you cannot possibly do."

So in other words, pronoia does not guarantee that you will forevermore be free of all difficult experiences.

It doesn't ask you to pretend that everything is sweet and harmonious all the time.

On the contrary, when you embody the spirit of pronoia, you build your optimism by loving your challenges, not repressing them.

You know that your problems are gifts from the Goddess that are designed to make you smarter and wilder and kinder and trickier.

You welcome each fresh puzzle as a potential source of your future bliss, as an exciting teaching that will usher you to your next breakthrough.

To hear or read the rest of the essay "Shadow Blessings,"go here.

♎ LIBRA

(September 23-October 22)
In her book The Winter Vault, Anne Michaels says, "We become ourselves when things are given to us or when things are taken away." If she's right, does it mean we should be grateful for those times when things are taken away? Should we regard moments of loss as therapeutic prods that compel us to understand ourselves better and to create ourselves with a fiercer determination? Meditate on these possibilities, Libra. In the meantime, I'm pleased to announce that the things-getting-taken-away period of your cycle is winding down. Soon you'll begin a new phase, when you can become a deeper, stronger version of yourself because of the things that are given to you.

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Want to hear more about the subconscious factors and hidden forces that may be influencing your life? Listen to your EXPANDED AUDIO HOROSCOPE.

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SACRED ADVERTISEMENT. The oracle below is from my book PRONOIA Is the Antidote for Paranoia: How the Whole World Is Conspiring to Shower You with Blessings.
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Some religious traditions teach the doctrine, "Kill off your longings." In their view, attachment to desire is at the root of human suffering. But the religion of materialism takes the opposite tack, asserting that the meaning of life is to be found in indulging desires. Its creed is, "Feed your cravings like a French foie gras farmer cramming eight pounds of maize down a goose's gullet every day."

At the Beauty and Truth Lab, we walk a middle path. We believe there are both degrading desires that enslave you and sacred desires that liberate you.

Psychologist Carl Jung believed that all desires have a sacred origin, no matter how odd they may seem. Frustration and ignorance may contort them into distorted caricatures, but it is always possible to locate the divine source from which they arose. In describing one of his addictive patients, Jung said: "His craving for alcohol was the equivalent on a low level of the spiritual thirst for wholeness, or as expressed in medieval language: the union with God."

Psychotherapist James Hillman echoes the theme: "Psychology regards all symptoms to be expressing the right thing in the wrong way." A preoccupation with porn or romance novels, for instance, may come to dominate a passionate person whose quest for love has degenerated into an obsession with images of love. "Follow the lead of your symptoms," Hillman suggests, "for there's usually a myth in the mess, and a mess is an expression of soul."

To hear or read the rest of this essay "What If Your Desires Are Holy?",go here.

♏ SCORPIO

(October 23-November 21)
"I'll make love when the lust subsides," sings Denitia, one-half of the electro-pop band Denitia and Sene. That would be a good motto for you to play around with in the coming days, Scorpio -- in both literal and metaphorical ways. I'll enjoy seeing how your emotional intelligence ripens as the white-hot passion of recent weeks evolves into a more manageable warmth. As fun as the intensity has been, it has blinded you to some of the possibilities for collaborative growth that have been emerging. You may now be ready to explore and appreciate sweeter, subtler pleasures.

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To further explore the ripening blessings and interesting challenges in your life, tune in to your EXPANDED AUDIO HOROSCOPE.

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SACRED ADVERTISEMENT. The oracle below is from my book PRONOIA Is the Antidote for Paranoia: How the Whole World Is Conspiring to Shower You with Blessings.
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Although we are all born geniuses, the grind of day-to-day living tends to de-genius us. That's the bad news. The good news is that you have the power to re-genius yourself.

I'm going to give you a ritual called "Re-Genius Yourself," which you can use to jump-start the process. Below is an excerpt. To hear or read the entire ritual, go here.

You came into this world as a radiant bundle of exuberant riddles. You slipped into this dimension as a shimmering burst of spiral hallelujahs. You blasted into this realm as a lush explosion of ecstatic gratitude. And it is your birthright to fulfill those promises.

I'm not pandering to your egotism by telling you these things. When I say, "Be yourself," I don't mean you should be the self that wants to win every game and use up every resource and stand alone at the end of time on top of a Mt. Everest-sized pile of pretty garbage.

When I say, "Be yourself," I mean the self that says "Thank you!" to the wild irises and the windy rain and the people who grow your food.

When I say, "Be yourself," I mean the rebel creator who's longing to make the whole universe your home and sanctuary.

When I say, "Be yourself," I mean the dissident bodhisattva who's joyfully struggling to germinate the seeds of divine love that are packed inside every moment.

When I say, "Be yourself," I mean the spiritual freedom fighter who's scrambling and finagling and conspiring to relieve your fellow messiahs from their suffering and shower them with rowdy blessings.

To hear or read the rest of this essay "Re-Genius Yourself,"go here.

♐ SAGITTARIUS

(November 22-December 21)
"The poems I have loved the most are those I have understood the least," said T. S. Eliot. I'm going to steal and expand upon his idea for the purpose of giving you an accurate horoscope. In the coming days, Sagittarius, I suspect that the experiences you love most will be those that you understand the least. Indeed, the experiences you NEED the most will be those that surprise and mystify and intrigue you. Luckily, life will be ingenious in bypassing your analytical intelligence so as to provide you with rich emotional stimuli for your soul.

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Need more whacks applied to your mental blocks? More caresses bestowed upon your growing edge? Listen to your EXPANDED AUDIO HOROSCOPE.

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SACRED ADVERTISEMENT. The oracle below is from my book PRONOIA Is the Antidote for Paranoia: How the Whole World Is Conspiring to Shower You with Blessings.
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Your imagination is the single most important asset you possess. It's your power to create mental pictures of things that don't exist yet and that you want to bring into being. It's the magic wand you use to shape your future.

And so in your own way, you are a prophet. You generate countless predictions every day. Your imagination is the source, tirelessly churning out images of what you will be doing later.

The featured prophecy of the moment may be as simple as a psychic impression of yourself eating a fudge brownie at lunch or as monumental as a daydream of some year building your dream home by a lake or sea.

Your imagination is a treasure when it spins out scenarios that are aligned with your deepest desires. In fact, it's an indispensable tool in creating the life you want; it's what you use to form images of the conditions you'd like to inhabit and the objects you hope to wield. Nothing manifests on this planet unless it first exists as a mental picture.

But for most of us, the imagination is as much a curse as a blessing. We're often just as likely to use it to conjure up premonitions that are at odds with our conscious values. That's the result of having absorbed toxic programming from the media and from our parents at an early age and from other influential people in our past.

Fearful fantasies regularly pop up into our awareness, many disguising themselves as rational thoughts and genuine intuitions. Those fearful fantasies may hijack our psychic energy, directing it to exhaust itself in dead-end meditations.

Every time we entertain a vision of being rejected or hurt or frustrated, every time we rouse and dwell on a memory of a painful experience, we're blasting ourselves with a hex . . . .

Read or hear the rest of "You Are a Prophet."

♑ CAPRICORN

(December 22-January 19)
Capricorn painter Henri Matisse made the following testimony about his creative process: "At each stage I reach a balance, a conclusion. At the next sitting, if I find that there is a weakness in the whole, I make my way back into the picture by means of the weakness -- I re-enter through the breach -- and I reconceive the whole. Thus everything becomes fluid again." I recommend this approach to you in the coming days, Capricorn. You've been making decent progress on your key project. To keep up the good work, you should now find where the cracks are, and let them teach you how to proceed from here.

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

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SACRED ADVERTISEMENT. The oracle below is from my book PRONOIA Is the Antidote for Paranoia: How the Whole World Is Conspiring to Shower You with Blessings.
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DEFINITION: Pronoia is the antidote for paranoia. It's the understanding that the universe is fundamentally friendly. It's a mode of training your senses and intellect so you're able to perceive the fact that life always gives you exactly what you need, exactly when you need it.

OBJECTIVE OF PRONOIA: To explore the secrets of becoming a wildly disciplined, fiercely tender, ironically sincere, scrupulously curious, aggressively sensitive, blasphemously reverent, lyrically logical, lustfully compassionate Master of Rowdy Bliss.

HYPOTHESES: Evil is boring. Cynicism is idiotic. Fear is a bad habit. Despair is lazy. Joy is fascinating. Love is an act of heroic genius. Pleasure is your birthright. Receptivity is a superpower.

PROCEDURE: Act as if the universe is a prodigious miracle created for your amusement and illumination. Assume that secret helpers are working behind the scenes to assist you in turning into the gorgeous masterpiece you were born to be. Join the conspiracy to shower all of creation with blessings.

GUIDING QUESTION: "The secret of life," said sculptor Henry Moore to poet Donald Hall, "is to have a task, something you devote your entire life to, something you bring everything to, every minute of the day for your whole life. And the most important thing is -- it must be something you cannot possibly do." What is that task for you?

Go here to read or hear the rest of "The Experiment."

♒ AQUARIUS

(January 20- February 18)
"We all lead three lives," said Austrian novelist Thomas Bernhard, "an actual one, an imaginary one, and the one we are not aware of." I suspect you'll get big glimpses of your third life in the coming weeks, Aquarius: the one you're normally not aware of. It might freak you out a bit, maybe unleash a few blasts of laughter and surges of tears. But if you approach these revelations with reverent curiosity, I bet they will be cleansing and catalytic. They are also likely to make you less entranced by your imaginary life and better grounded in your actual life.

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Would you like to hear me say some more about your ever-evolving destiny? Check out your EXPANDED AUDIO HOROSCOPE.

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SACRED ADVERTISEMENT. The oracle below is from my book PRONOIA Is the Antidote for Paranoia: How the Whole World Is Conspiring to Shower You with Blessings.
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Many of us are essentially asleep, even as we walk around in broad daylight. We're so focused on the restless narratives and repetitive fantasies unfurling in our heads that we only dimly perceive the larger story raging in all of its chaotic beauty around us.

To have any hope of permanently breaking out of our fuzzy trance, we require regular shocks. A single jolt might cause us to briefly come to attention and see the miracle of creation for what it is, but once the red alert has passed, we relax back into our fixation on the dreamy tales our mind never stops telling us.

In the course of its conspiracy to shower us with blessings, life does its best to provide us with a steady flow of healing shocks. But because it tends to err on the side of tenderness, its prods may be too gentle, allowing us to ignore them. Gradually, life will up the ante, trying to find the right mix of toughness and love, as it encourages us to WAKE UP!

But our addiction to the phantasmagoria is tenacious. The stream-of-conscious narratives and ever-bubbling fantasies, even when they're racked with torment and terror, are perversely entertaining. And so we may avoid responding to the kind shocks for so long that life finally has to resort to stronger medicine. Then we might get sick or lose our job or muck up our closest relationship.

It doesn't have to be that way. We could cultivate in ourselves a sixth sense for the wake-up calls life sends us. We might develop a knack for responding with agile grace to the early, gentler ones so that we wouldn't have to be visited by the more stringent measures . . . .

Go here to read or hear the rest of "Healing Shocks."

♓ PISCES

(February 19-March 20)
"The greatest illusion is not religion," says aphorist Michael Lipsey. "It's waking up in the morning imagining how much you're going to get done today." But even if that's often true, Pisces, I suspect that you have the power to refute it in the coming weeks. Your ability to accomplish small wonders will be at a peak. Your knack for mastering details and acting with practical acumen may be unprecedented. For the immediate future, then, I predict that you'll largely be able to get done what you imagine you can get done.

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Need more help deciphering the riddles and enigmas that are fueling your amazing story? Listen to your EXPANDED AUDIO HOROSCOPE.

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SACRED ADVERTISEMENT. The oracle below is from my book PRONOIA Is the Antidote for Paranoia: How the Whole World Is Conspiring to Shower You with Blessings.
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More and more creative people find they do their best work when they're feeling healthy and secure. We know writers who no longer need to be drunk or in agony in order to shed the numbness of their daily routine and tap into the full powers of their imagination.

We have filmmaker friends whose best work flows not from the depths of alienated self-doubt but rather from the heights of well-earned bliss.

Singer-songwriter P.J. Harvey is the patron saint of this new breed. "When I'm contented, I'm more open to receiving a lot of inspiration," she has testified. "I'm most creative when I feel safe and happy" . . . .

Hear or read the rest of this meditation.

© Rob Brezsny 1995-2019