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Week of November 30th, 2023

Your Story Is Beautiful

My new book is available: ASTROLOGY IS REAL: Revelations from My Life as an Oracle

It’s partially a memoir of my adventures while writing an internationally syndicated horoscope column for four decades. It’s partially a book of essays about astrology and why we need more of the soulful intelligence that astrology potentially provides.

And it's also filled with insights and inspirations about your zodiac sign, dear reader.

ASTROLOGY IS REAL is a book you don’t necessarily have to read sequentially straight through from beginning to end. You can start anywhere in the book and read here and there, trusting your intuition to find exactly what you need, exactly when you need it.

(At the bottom of this page is a full list of where to buy the book.)

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I’ll tell you a key reason why I wrote the book:


Every day, you wade through a relentless surge of soul-less facts. The experience tends to shut down your sense of wonder.

Every day, you're over-exposed to cynical narratives that have been sucked free of delight and mystery. That's why you have to make such strenuous efforts to keep your world enchanted.

I want to enlist you in a conspiracy to champion the sacred cause of feeding our sense of wonder and enchantment.

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Celebrating the publication of my new book, master astrologer Steven Forrest says:

"I've been a big fan of Rob Brezsny's work for half my life now, and as an author myself, a little jealous of him, too. That's because he can express in ten words what it takes me a thousand words to say. On top of that, he manages to throw in a comedy act and a Zen meditation session. He's a magician.

“Astrology's star has risen dramatically in the past three decades. I'm convinced that it would not have happened without Rob. With his popular columns, he's reached millions of people and, more importantly, managed to make a connection between two words that were previously never heard together — astrology and intelligence. And while we're at it, let's add funny, literate, and profound."

—Steven Forrest, author of The Inner Sky


I’ll tell you another reason why I wrote my new book.

I love and respect the scientific method, and I use it every day to guide me in the practical arts of living life with grace and courage. Further, I am a huge fan of logic, reason, analysis, and discernment.

But I get queasy when these modes of intelligence are trumpeted as being the only worthy kind. More than queasy—I get sad and angry and upset.

As I have learned the skill of critical thinking, I have also cultivated alternate modes of perceiving and knowing. They have shown me that to be complete humans, we equally need other kinds of intelligence: poetry, dreams, imagination, feeling, myth, intimacy, metaphor, and storytelling.

Pure mind, as beautiful as it can be, is not enough: We need the vital soul. Whenever the mind is involved without the participation of the soul, we are liable to misunderstand reality and come to distorted, dissociated, sterile conclusions.

A key aspiration that inspired me to write Astrology Is Real is the yearning to be an advocate for the soul—a lobbyist, a champion, a crusader on behalf of the soul.


Journalist Traci Hukill writes:

“If Rob Brezsny’s horoscopes are good medicine, his new book ASTROLOGY IS REAL is a yoga retreat on the beach with the healthiest, most delicious food and daily massages by well-paid people who enjoy their work.

“To sit and read Astrology Is Real is to bathe in a kind of good radiation. Ideas and possibilities, light and humor materialize.

“Space opens up to think about your purpose in this world and your most important relationships. It’s like hanging out with a wise friend who has no agenda for you but who helps you see things clearly. Helps you be your best self.”


Below is an excerpt from the book:


Should I engage in conversations with people who long ago decided that astrology is nonsense? It’s not a good use of my time. Their minds are as irrevocably and self-satisfyingly closed as an evangelical Christian Republican who already knows forever there's no such thing as human-caused climate change.

But if an open-minded person agrees to consider my rational discourse, I begin with the thoughts below.

The majority of those who deride astrology with kneejerk derision don't know that four of history's greatest astronomers were practicing astrologers: Johannes Kepler, Galileo Galilei, Tycho Brahe, and Pierre Gassendi.

Most of the deriders haven't read smart astrological philosophers like Dane Rudhyar, Alice O. Howell, Clare Martin, Steven Arroyo, Richard Tarnas, Antero Alli, Keiron Le Grice, and Liz Greene. They aren't aware that pioneering psychologist Carl Jung cast horoscopes for all his patients and believed that "astrology represents the summation of all the psychological knowledge of antiquity."

The deriders don't know about astronomer Martha Maiden. She was a program executive at NASA for years and achieved such prominence that she now has an award named after her. Martha is also an excellent astrologer. I know because she and I were friends who attended Duke University at the same time. We lived next door to each other in Durham and carried on an astrology study group with two other friends.

The closest approach that fraudulent "skeptics" often make to studying the ancient art of astrology is to glance at a tabloid or internet horoscope column. To match their carelessness, I might make a drive-by of a strip mall and declare that the profession of architecture is shallow and debased.

That's one reason why the ill-informed "skeptics" spread ignorant lies about the subject. For example, every few years, there's an uproar in the press when an astronomer falsely declares that there is a 13th astrological sign, not just 12, and that therefore all our personal horoscopes are different from what we think they are.

Those astronomers haven't bothered to do the most basic research about how astrology works. Their "rationality" is profoundly irrational. I've compiled more information about this subject HERE.

Here's another gross misunderstanding by “skeptics” who have eschewed basic research. They say that all astrologers think the stars and planets emit invisible beams of energy that shape people's lives. The truth is, some Western astrologers believe that, but many don’t.

Science popularizer Carl Sagan provided an egregious example of this ignorance. In his TV series Cosmos, he portentously dismissed the straw-man notion that planets might impact a newborn baby.

He said, “How could the rising of Mars at the moment of my birth affect me, then or now? I was born in a closed room. Light from Mars couldn’t get in. The only influence of Mars which could affect me was its gravity. The gravitational pull of the obstetrician was much larger than the gravitational influence of Mars. Mars is a lot more massive, but the obstetrician was much closer.”

I’m still aghast that a scientist of Sagan’s caliber could have been so poorly informed.

Every single one of the many astrologers I respect agrees with what expert astrologer Richard Tarnas says in his book Cosmos and Psyche: The planets don't emit invisible forces that shape our destinies as if we were puppets. Rather, they are symbols of the unfolding evolutionary pattern. Just as clocks tell time but don't create it, the heavenly bodies show us the big picture but don't cause it.

I don’t want to provide space for every spurious argument made by unscientific scientists. But here’s one more howler. Several self-described rational skeptics have assured me that astrology is nonsense because it believes "our behavior depends on the positions of the stars."
I laugh out loud when I hear such comically ignorant drivel. The fact is that Western astrology has nothing to do with any stars except our own: the sun. It's all about planets.

The "rational skeptics" make another fundamental error. The truth is that smart astrologers are not determinists, not dogmatists, not superstitious manipulators. They don't believe that our behavior is dependent on or controlled by heavenly bodies.

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Many scientists deride astrology as being a "pseudoscience." In making such a fallacious claim, they reveal they have shunned the most basic principle of science, which is to actually investigate the subject they aspire to understand.

If these incompetents took the trouble to do research, they would have discovered that Western astrology's best practitioners don't claim that astrology is a science—which means that it can't be a pseudoscience!

The lyrical and practical truth is that astrology is a blend of psychology, storytelling, and mythology. As Carl Jung said, it's an aid in understanding and articulating how the psyche works. Like any language, it's both logical and messy; it's useful in making sense of the world, yet full of crazy-making ambiguities.

Astrology is a symbol system that, when used with integrity, engenders soulful approaches for deepening our connection to life's great mysteries—not predictions of literal events. It liberates and fertilizes our imaginations and encourages us to think less literally. It teaches us to visualize our destinies as mythic quests and deepens our connection to life's gorgeous mysteries.

Psychologist James Hillman spoke of the joyous work of learning our soul's code—the blueprint of our destiny. That's what astrology does best. To imagine that this can be done in a scientific way is irrelevant and delusional.

ASTROLOGY IS NOT A SCIENCE! Nor is storytelling, depth psychology, mythology, dream interpretation, or poetry.

It makes as much sense to criticize astrology for not being scientific as it does to deride Joseph Campbell treatises on the world's mythic traditions or Ursula K. Le Guin's science fiction novels because they don't explicate and illustrate the quantum field theory of physics.

The scientific method is a wonderful method for achieving some understanding of the world. But we can't use it to analyze the Indigenous Bororo people's myth, "The Bird-Nester's Aria." It's not a reliable strategy for uncovering deep truths about how a Beethoven symphony might alter the way we think about a problem we're having at work.

We profoundly need the scientific method and logical deduction and objective perceptions. They are crucial to being human. But we also need mythopoetic storytelling and art that moves us emotionally in mysterious ways and playful fun that frees us from our fixations.

Does it make sense to say that analyzing and working on dreams is "pseudoscience"? Of course not. You can't design a repeatable experiment to test your hypothesis about those slippery marvels. And yet, working with one's dreams, analyzing them to find subconscious patterns that affect our behavior, can be intensely practical.

Astrology is not designed to compete with scientists' logical analyses of why things are the way they are. Rather, it's meant to open our minds to the mythic elements that underlie the surface-level interpretations of what we're all about.

I can't imagine any intelligent person who would believe that the scientific way of knowing is better and more important than the mythopoetic—or vice versa.

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