Free Will Astrology


Horoscopes by Rob Brezsny


Week of August 18th, 2016

♈ ARIES

(March 21-April 19)
Can you imagine feeling at home in the world no matter where you are? If you eventually master this art, outer circumstances won't distort your relationship with yourself. No matter how crazy or chaotic the people around you might be, you will remain rooted in your unshakable sense of purpose; you will respond to any given situation in ways that make you both calm and alert, amused and curious, compassionate for the suffering of others and determined to do what's best for you. If you think these are goals worth seeking, you can make dramatic progress toward them in the coming weeks.

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When they say "Be yourself," which self do they mean? Certainly not the self that wants to win every game and use up every resource and stand alone at the end of time on a mountain of pretty garbage. So which self is it? For guidance, 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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Have you ever played the game of "Tell me the story of your scars?" It's best to do it with a skilled empath who is curious about your fate's riddles and skilled at helping you find redemption in your wounds.

"How'd you get that blotch on your knee?" he or she might begin, and you describe the time in childhood when you fell on the sidewalk. Then maybe he or she would say, "Why do you always look so sad when you hear that song?" And you narrate the tale of how it was playing when an old lover broke your heart. The questions and answers continue until you unveil the history of your hurts, both physical and psychic. Treat yourself to this game soon.

♉ TAURUS

(April 20-May 20)
As I tried to meditate on your horoscope, my next-door neighbor was wielding a weed-whacker to trim her lawn, and the voices in my head were shouting extra loud. So I decided to drive down to the marsh to get some high-quality silence. When I arrived at the trail head, I found an older man in ragged clothes leaning against the fence. Nearby was a grocery cart full of what I assumed were all his earthly belongings. "Doing nothing is a very difficult art," he croaked as I slipped by him, "because you're never really sure when you are done." I immediately recognized that his wisdom might be useful to you. You are, after all, in the last few days of your recharging process. It's still a good idea for you to lie low and be extra calm and vegetate luxuriously. But when should you rise up and leap into action again? Here's my guess: Get one more dose of intense stillness and silence.

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Take inventory of the extent that "No" dominates your life. Notice how often you say or think: 1. "That's not right." 2. "I don't like that." 3. "I don't agree with that." 4. "They don't like me." 5. "I'm not very good." 6. "That should be different from what it is." For help in retraining yourself to say "Yes!" at least 51% of the time, 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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"Love is being stupid together," said French poet Paul Valéry. While there's an element of truth to that, it's too corny and decadent for my tastes. I prefer to focus on a more interesting truth, which is this: Real love is being smart together. If you weave your destiny together with another's, he or she should catalyze your sleeping potentials, sharpen your perceptions, and boost both your emotional and analytical intelligence. Your relationship becomes a crucible in which you deepen your understanding of the way the world works.

Think of an example of your closest approach to this model in your own life. Then formulate a vow in which you promise you'll do what's necessary to more fully embody the principle "love is being smart together."

♊ GEMINI

(May 21-June 20)
My readers have a range of approaches for working with the counsel I offer. Some study the horoscopes for both their sun signs and rising signs, then create do-it-yourself blends of the two. Others prefer to wait until the week is over before consulting what I've written. They don't want my oracles to influence their future behavior, but enjoy evaluating their recent past in light of my analysis. Then there are the folks who read all 12 of my horoscopes. They refuse to be hemmed in by just one forecast, and want to be free to explore multiple options. I encourage you to try experiments like these in the coming days. The moment is ripe to cultivate more of your own unique strategies for using and interpreting the information you absorb -- both from me and from everyone else you listen to.

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How's your fight for freedom going? Are you making progress in liberating yourself from your unconscious obsessions, bad habits, and conditioned responses? For assistance and inspiration, 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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"The more accidental, the more true," wrote Boris Pasternak in his poem "February." Scholar Mikhail Epstein expanded this observation: "The more accidental the phenomenon, the more divine its nature, for the divine is what has not been envisioned, what cannot be deduced from general rules, nor irreducible to them."

If we pursue this line of thought to its logical conclusion, we may decide that the most useful sources of illumination are not always holy books, revered dogma, and great truths that everyone has heard. They might also be serendipitous anomalies that erupt into the daily routine and break the trance of ordinary awareness. "The tiny spark," Epstein writes, "is the precise measure of the holiness of the world."

♋ CANCERIAN

(June 21-July 22)
Have you been drinking a lot of liquids? Are you spending extra time soaking in hot baths and swimming in bodies of water that rejuvenate you? Have you been opening your soul to raw truths that dissolve your fixations and to beauty that makes you cry and to love that moves you to sing? I hope you're reverently attending to these fluidic needs. I hope you're giving your deepest yearnings free play and your freshest emotions lots of room to unfold. Smart, well-lubricated intimacy is a luxurious necessity, my dear. Stay very, very wet.

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Assume that your drive to experience pleasure isn't a barrier to your spiritual growth, but is in fact essential to it. Proceed on the hypothesis that cultivating joy can make you a more ethical and compassionate person. Imagine that feeling good has something important to teach you every day. For inspiration in practicing this approach, 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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Robin Norwood's self-help book Women Who Love Too Much deals with a theme that has gotten a lot of play in recent decades: If you're too generous to someone who doesn't appreciate it and at the expense of your own needs, you can make yourself sick.

An alternative perspective comes from French philosopher Blaise Pascal, who said, "When one does not love too much, one does not love enough." He was primarily addressing psychologically healthy altruists, but it's a good ideal for pronoia lovers to keep in mind.

Decide whether you need to move more in the direction of Norwood's or Pascal's advice. Develop a game plan to carry out your resolve, then take action.

♌ LEO

(July 23-August 22)
In my opinion, you need to bask in the glorious fury of at least one brainstorm -- preferably multiple brainstorms over the course of the next two weeks. What can you do to ensure that happens? How might you generate a flood of new ideas about how to live your life and understand the nature of reality? Here are some suggestions: Read books about creativity. Hang around with original thinkers and sly provocateurs. Insert yourself into situations that will strip you of your boring certainties. And take this vow: "I hereby unleash the primal power of my liberated imagination."

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"Whether I shall turn out to be the hero of my own life, or whether that station will be held by anybody else, these pages must show." So begins Charles Dickens' novel David Copperfield. I'd like to inspire you to write a story of your own that begins like that. For help, tune into 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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If you're typical, your natural curiosity was virtually extinguished at an early age by mediocre teachers, boring lessons, and oppressive classrooms. Have you ever wondered what your life would be like if your imagination hadn't been squelched? What interesting adventures might you have sought out if your natural love of learning hadn't been crushed?

Let's launch a quest to undo the damage. Imagine I've handed you an undiploma: your official release from the soul-death of your formal education; the beginning of the healing of your wounded love of learning. What's the first thing you'll do to invoke a steady stream of inspired teachers and invigorating lessons?

♍ VIRGO

(August 23-September 22)
When you were a child, did you play with imaginary friends? During your adolescence, did you nurture a fantasy relationship with a pretend boyfriend or girlfriend? Since you reached adulthood, have you ever enjoyed consorting with muses or guardian angels or ancestral spirits? If you answered yes to any of those questions, you are in a good position to take full advantage of the subtle opportunities and cryptic invitations that are coming your way. Unexpected sources are poised to provide unlikely inspirations in unprecedented ways.

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I invite you to keep a running list of all the ways life delights you and helps you and energizes you. Describe everyday miracles you take for granted . . . the uncanny powers you possess . . . the small joys that occur so routinely you forget how much they mean to you . . . the steady flow of benefits bestowed on you by people you know and don't know. What works for you? What makes you feel at home in the world? For inspiration in this noble effort, 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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Jungian analyst Arnold Mindell explores the relationship between mind and body. He believes you can achieve optimum physical health if you're devoted to shedding outworn self-images. In his book The Shaman's Body, he says, "You have one central lesson to learn—to continuously drop all your rigid identities. Personal history may be your greatest danger."

Kate Bornstein, author of Gender Outlaw: On Men, Women and the Rest of Us, agrees. Raised as a male, she later became a female, but ultimately renounced gender altogether. "I love being without an identity," she says. "It gives me a lot of room to play around."

What identities would be healthy for you to lose? Describe all the fun you'd have if you were free of them.

♎ LIBRA

(September 23-October 22)
When you were born, you already carried the seeds of gifts you would someday be able to provide -- specific influences or teachings or blessings that only you, of all the people who have ever lived, could offer the world. How are you doing in your quest to fulfill this potential? Here’s what I suspect: Your seeds have been ripening slowly and surely. But in the coming months, they could ripen at a more rapid pace. Whether they actually do or not may depend on your willingness to take on more responsibilities -- interesting responsibilities, to be sure -- but bigger than you're used to.

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All of creation loves you very much. Even now, people you know and people you don't know are collaborating to make sure you have all you need to make your next smart move. But are you willing to start loving life back with an equal intensity? The adoration it offers you has not exactly been unrequited, but there is room for you to be more demonstrative. For help in cultivating this approach, 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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Write the following on a piece of paper and keep it under your pillow. "I, [put your name here], do solemnly swear on this day [put date here] that I will devote myself for a period of seven days to learning my most important desire. No other thought will be more uppermost in my mind. No other concern will divert me from tracking down every clue that might assist me in my drive to ascertain the one experience in this world that deserves my brilliant passion above all others."

♏ SCORPIO

(October 23-November 21)
I suspect that you will soon be culminating a labor of love you've been nurturing and refining for many moons. How should you celebrate? Maybe with some champagne and caviar? If you'd like to include bubbly in your revels, a good choice might be 2004 Belle Epoque Rose. Its floral aroma and crispy mouth-feel rouse a sense of jubilation as they synergize the flavors of blood orange, pomegranate, and strawberry. As for caviar: Consider the smooth, aromatic, and elegant roe of the albino beluga sturgeon from the unpolluted areas of the Caspian Sea near Iran. But before I finish this oracle, let me also add that a better way to honor your accomplishment might be to take the money you'd spend on champagne and caviar, and instead use it as seed money for your next big project.

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What are the obvious secrets you can't quite see? How could you turn your challenges into daily gifts for yourself? For clues to mysteries like these, 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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If I ever produce a self-help manual called The Reverse Psychology of Getting Everything You Want, it will discuss the following paradoxes:

a. People are more willing to accommodate your longings if you're not greedy or grasping.

b. A good way to achieve your desires is to cultivate the feeling that you've already achieved them.

c. Whatever you're longing for has been changed by your pursuit of it. It's not the same as it was when you felt the first pangs of desire. In order to make it yours, then, you will have to modify your ideas about it.

d. Be careful what you wish for because if your wish does materialize it will require you to change in ways you didn't foresee.

Review your own life and identify experiences that exemplify these four principles.

♐ SAGITTARIUS

(November 22-December 21)
Some species of weeds become even more robust and entrenched as they develop resistances to the pesticides that are designed to eradicate them. This is one example of how fighting a problem can make the problem worse -- especially if you attack too furiously or use the wrong weapons. I invite you to consider the possibility that this might be a useful metaphor for you to contemplate in the coming weeks. Your desire to solve a knotty dilemma or shed a bad influence is admirable. Just make sure you choose a strategy that actually works.

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Grace emerges in the ebb and flow, not just the flow. The waning reveals a different blessing than the waxing. Where are you in the great cycle of your life? For inspiration in figuring it all out, 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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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 night 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.

♑ CAPRICORN

(December 22-January 19)
Your assignment, if you choose to accept it, is to compose an essay on at least one of the following themes: 1. "How I Fed and Fed My Demons Until They Gorged Themselves to Death." 2. "How I Exploited My Nightmares in Ways That Made Me Smarter and Cuter." 3. "How I Quietly and Heroically Transformed a Sticky Problem into a Sleek Opportunity." 4. "How I Helped Myself by Helping Other People." For extra credit, Capricorn -- and to earn the right to trade an unholy duty for a holy one -- write about all four subjects.

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Whether it's your time to ferment in the shadows or sing in the sun, fresh power to transform yourself is on the way. Life always delivers the creative energy you need to change into the new thing you must become. For more help in understanding it all, 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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"Is it bad to live without a hell?" poet Pablo Neruda asks in The Book of Questions. Let's add these queries to his: Is it dangerous to live without an enemy? Is it naive to think you can achieve great success without the driving motivation that comes from having ideas you hate? There are thousands of correct answers to these questions. What are yours?

Consider the issue from another angle. Dentists love tooth decay. Treating cavities provides them with a steady source of income. Likewise, exterminators are dependent on termites, lawyers need crimes, and priests are hungry for sinners. Lots of people have symbiotic connections with nasty stuff. In fact, isn't it true that most of us nurture our feelings for the things we love to despise and fear?

What's your favorite poison or adversary? Assume that your exposure to pronoia is changing you in ways that will require you to update your relationship with it. Speculate on how you'll go about this task.

♒ AQUARIUS

(January 20- February 18)
I suspect that in the coming months you will be drawn to wandering through the frontiers and exploring the unknown. Experimentation will come naturally. Places and situations you have previously considered to be off-limits may be downright comfortable. In fact, it's possible that you will have to escape your safety zones in order to fully be yourself. Got all that? Now here's the kicker. In the coming weeks, everything I just described will be especially apropos for your closest relationships. Are you interested in redefining and reconfiguring the ways that togetherness works for you?

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You can learn to be lucky. It's not a mystical force you're born with, but a habit you can develop. How? For starters, be open to new experiences, trust your gut wisdom, expect good fortune, see the bright side of challenging events, and master the art of maximizing serendipitous opportunities. For more help, 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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The factor most likely to drive us to addiction or illness is a lack of intimate contact with spirit. We all need a daily dose of vastness. Paradoxically, many of us would also benefit from more microscopic vision. Because we're so deprived of divine connection, we're half-dreaming all the time; our unconscious pining for the eternal source distracts us from the vivid little glories that are splayed out around us. And so we miss the Divine Wow from both directions.

Try this: Prime your connection with spirit by focusing your attention on tones and shapes you usually miss: reflections in windows, the sky between the oak tree's branches, the shadows on the water, the two different emotions in a friend's eyes and mouth.

♓ PISCES

(February 19-March 20)
If you're playing the card game known as bridge, you're lucky if you are dealt a hand that has no cards of a particular suit. This enables you, right from the beginning, to capture tricks using the trump suit. In other words, the lack of a certain resource gives you a distinct advantage. Let's apply this metaphor to your immediate future, Pisces. I'm guessing that you will benefit from what may seem to be an inadequacy or deficit. An absence will be a useful asset.

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Somewhere there's a treasure that has no value to anyone but you, and a secret that's meaningless to everyone except you, and a frontier that harbors a revelation only you would know how to exploit. Why not go in search of those things? For inspiration, 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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Everyone influences the world in some way. No matter how powerless we may feel, each of us is a creator who continually churns out energy that bends and shapes our world and the people in it. What is the signature of your effect? How do you change the environments you pass through? What magic, for good or ill, do you exude from day to day?

© Rob Brezsny 1995-2019