Freewill Astrology

Freewill Astrology

ARIES (March 21-April 19):
After working for years in various jobs at San Francisco TV station KTVU, Frank Sommerville was promoted to the top of the heap — lead anchorman of the 10 o’clock news program. He promised that his new power wouldn’t make him lazy or complacent. "Nobody will out-curious me," he bragged. I hope you will adopt the same motto for the foreseeable future, Aries. Your world needs you to be intensely inquisitive about what’s transpiring. Uncoincidentally, asking lots of smart questions (and even some dumb ones) will also be the best possible thing you can do for your mental health.

TAURUS (April 20-May 20):
"The Irish don’t know what they want and are prepared to fight for it," said British attorney Sidney Littlewood. I don’t endorse that assertion, since it’s an offensive ethnic stereotype, but I do want to borrow it to create a cautionary message for you. Please make sure that in the upcoming weeks no one can say to you, "You don’t know what you want and yet you are prepared to fight for it." I definitely hope you aggressively champion an idea you believe in or a dream you care about, but you should get clearer about what exactly it is.

GEMINI (May 21-June 20):
Giuseppe Rebaudi and Silvie Basain started dating in 1952. This year they finally decided to take the next step. After a 56-year courtship, the 101-year-old Italian man wed his 98-year-old girlfriend. I predict that a comparable event will bless your love life in the second half of 2008, Gemini. Some romantic development that has been in the works for a long time will finally ripen into its full expression. Expect news about this soon.

CANCER (June 21-July 22):
If you’re normal, you periodically feel little surges of anger that you don’t express. Over time they may accumulate into a mass of blind rage that can hurt innocent bystanders, damage your relationships, and tempt you to punch holes in walls. Is there a way to keep this from happening? Yes, there is: It’s my patented Laughing Tantrum Release Therapy, a five-minute ritual that you perform once a week in a private place with no witnesses. For four minutes, you fume, seethe, curse, and yell. For the final 60 seconds, you compel yourself to laugh uncontrollably. This week would be an excellent time to start integrating Laughing Tantrum Release Therapy into your routine.

LEO (July 23-Aug. 22):
Guerrilla gardening is my favorite kind of prank: a benevolent one. The practitioners of this growing global movement are fertility agitators who sneak onto unused fields under cover of broad daylight, often in urban landscapes, and cultivate flowers, herbs, and food crops. In accordance with the astrological omens, I recommend that you experiment with a metaphorically similar project in the upcoming weeks. Without necessarily seeking permission or expecting appreciation, cultivate beauty and value in a place that’s neglected or going to waste.

VIRGO (Aug. 23-Sept. 22):
"Dear Star-Reader Brezsny: You are the only wizard who can save me. I have a bad job — just $72,000 a year — plus a lover who’s not all that cute and a home that’s not worth as much as it used to be. My health is good but I hate my nose and ass. Can’t afford a BMW or a vacation to Spain. My world is unraveling! Hope is fading! Please tell me what to do! – Virgo on the Verge." Dear On the Verge: I suggest that you temporarily suspend your strident yearning. This is one time when it’s important to cultivate more appreciation for what you actually have. I urge you and all Virgos to turn your attention away from what you think you lack, and devote your psychic energy to loving what is.

LIBRA (Sept. 23-Oct. 22):
Even if you’re not sick, you need some medicine. What kind of medicine? The kind that can transform what’s pretty good about your life into something that’s really great; the kind that will super-animate your merely average efforts and blast you free of any lackadaisical attitudes you’ve come to accept as reasonable. This medicine won’t come in the form of a pill or a potion, but rather will be produced by your own body if and when you slip away from your comfort zone and go out to play in the frontier. Be your own doctor, Libra. Break your own trance. Crack your own code. Escape your own mind games.

SCORPIO (Oct. 23-Nov. 21):
Your life in the coming weeks may resemble a dream of sailing deep beneath the waves in a yellow submarine where a nonstop party is going on. It’ll be as if you’re plowing through deep, heavy, murky waters inside a brightly-lit high-tech vessel that is controlled by slightly chaotic connoisseurs of fun. You may feel a bit claustrophobic, but that could encourage your imagination to run wild, which will be a good thing as long as you don’t believe everything it tells you. In conclusion, Scorpio, get ready for entertaining adventures that will range from being a bit creepy to totally delicious.

SAGITTARIUS (Nov. 22-Dec. 21):
During America’s first war on Iraq in 1991, I prophesied that one day there’d be a Disneyland in Baghdad. It was a surrealistically sardonic send-up of my native country’s imperialism. But now, 17 years later, my absurd prediction is coming true. The same American company that designed the original Disneyland has announced plans to build the Baghdad Zoo and Entertainment Experience. If workers survive bombing, looting, and sniper fire, the first part of the 50-acre amusement park will open this year. While I question whether building a monument to fun is a good idea in an actual war zone, it’s an excellent metaphor for you to apply to your personal life. Even if you can’t extinguish a certain conflict that has been raging, try to introduce a spirit of play into the proceedings.

CAPRICORN (Dec. 22-Jan. 19):
I’m issuing a too-much-of-a-good-thing warning. Soaking up too much pleasure could dilute the value of your bliss. Expressing too much personal power could scare away valuable allies who are competent but not entirely confident. Pushing too hard on behalf of your creative pragmatism could subtly undermine the labor of love you’ve worked so hard on. Therefore, Capricorn, please accept my invitation to enjoy a period of rest and assimilation. You can return later for another round of pure intensity.

AQUARIUS (Jan. 20-Feb. 18):
Studies show that at least half the population would give up sex for a few months if they’d be rewarded for their abstinence with a free 60-inch plasma TV. But if you’re offered a deal like that anytime soon, Aquarius, I suggest you reject it. According to my analysis of the omens, it will be crucial to your mental, physical, and spiritual health to have regular erotic experiences during the coming weeks. If you don’t have a partner, have fun with your invisible muse, the angel in your dreams, or your personal version of God or Goddess.

PISCES (Feb. 19-March 20):
A professional dominatrix I know says that many of her clients are men whose jobs give them excessive authority over other people. When she’s bossing around these honchos, she sees herself as an agent of karmic correction, counteracting a dangerous lopsidedness in their psyches. I bring this up, Pisces, because you’re in a phase when you should rectify any imbalance of power that exists in your own sphere. If you’re a swaggering alpha male or female, put in a stint as a humble servant. If you’re normally a timid soul, flex your willpower with feisty abandon. If you’re neither a control freak nor a doormat — and thus have no karma to balance — spend quality time meditating on how to gain more power over the wild ebbs and flows of your imagination.

omework: Create a list of five words you consider bad and five words you consider good. Then make up a little chant using them all, and speak the chant aloud 10 times. Testify at RealAstrology.com.

Freewill Astrology

Freewill Astrology

ARIES (March 21-April 19):
I hope you’ve been trying to bolster your stick-to-it-iveness, Aries. I trust you’ve been pumping up your follow-through and supercharging your determination. If you haven’t been attending to this unglamorous yet heroic work, play catch-up. Your final exam will be administered no later than May 24. Here’s a sneak preview of some of the material you’ll be tested on. If a teammate drops the ball, do you: a. quit the game; b. throw the ball in your teammate’s face; c. pick up the ball and start running in the direction your teammate was supposed to?

TAURUS (April 20-May 20):
The daytime TV soap opera The Young and the Restless has been the most highly-rated show in its time slot for more than a thousand consecutive weeks. First appearing in 1973, the show ascended to the top slot in 1988 and has never slipped since. I’m happy to announce that in 2008 you have the potential to begin a comparable run of success, Taurus. Whether you’re able to cash in on that potential may depend on the preparations you make in the coming weeks.

GEMINI (May 21-June 20):
"Pain is weakness leaving the body," says fitness trainer Mark Duval. If that’s true, you have gotten a lot stronger in recent weeks. By my astrological reckoning, you’ve shed a few months’ worth of emotional distress, you’ve purged a few years’ worth of frustration, and you’ve exorcised a couple of lifetimes’ worth of confused dreams. Congratulations on all the new vitality you’ve earned through your constructive losses.

CANCER (June 21-July 22):
As part of the arrangement your soul entered into before you were born, you were given the mission to accomplish five specific miracles. Three of these you have not yet even guessed the nature of. Why? For one thing, none of your elders or teachers ever named them for you while you were growing up. Secondly, you have been overly timid about imagining what you’re capable of. That’s the bad news, Cancerian. The good news is that you’re very close to the mystery spot where one of those undiscovered dreams has been moldering.

LEO (July 23-Aug. 22):
"The maxim for any love affair," wrote Charles Williams, "is ‘Play and pray, but do not pray when you are playing and do not play when you are praying.’ We cannot yet manage such simultaneities." But I strongly disagree with Williams, especially in regards to your destiny in the coming weeks. According to my analysis of the astrological omens, you can and should play while you pray, and pray while you play. In fact, I recommend that you blend reverence and irreverence in every way you can imagine. Explore the revolutionary concept of sacred fun.

VIRGO (Aug. 23-Sept. 22):
Seems you’re pushing to learn all you can from places and ideas you barely even know existed a few months ago. Your experiments continue to provide such valuable lessons that you’d rather not wrap them up yet. That’s fine. No rush. Take your time. We here at the Grind will welcome you back anytime you’re ready. We completely understand if you want to stay out there on a limb until you’re absolutely sure that the butterfly won’t have any reason to try changing back into a caterpillar.

LIBRA (Sept. 23-Oct. 22):
"Dear Rob: I’ve been a Libra all my life, and I’m always puzzled by those who say that Librans have trouble making decisions. My experience of the Libra approach to life is that we are connoisseurs of completeness. We work hard to be considerate of other people’s viewpoints. We strive to include all the applicable information in our deliberations, even if it’s at odds with our personal perspective. Now it’s true that urgency and speed are the cultural norms. ‘If it can’t happen immediately, I’m not interested in it’ is an approach that has infected the majority. In that light, Librans may seem wishy-washy and hesitant. But in fact, we’re actually thoughtful and judicious. Please help correct the bad stereotype about us. – Discerning Libra." Dear Discerning: You make excellent points. I will pass them on to my Libra readers because it’s crucial that in the days ahead they avoid being misinterpreted in the way you described.

SCORPIO (Oct. 23-Nov. 21):
A journalist visiting the home of Nobel Prize-winning physicist Niels Bohr was surprised to see a horseshoe nailed to the wall. "Can it be that you, of all people, believe a horseshoe will bring you good luck?" he asked. "Of course not," Bohr replied, "but I understand it brings you luck whether you believe it or not." I suggest you adopt the physicist’s mindset in the coming week, Scorpio. Without dumbing down your powers of logic, be open to the possibility that you will benefit from forces that are beyond your imagining or unaccounted for by your belief system. [Source: Living Biographies of Great Scientists, by Henry & Dana Lee Thomas.]

SAGITTARIUS (Nov. 22-Dec. 21):
In his folk song "Farewell to the Gold," Nic Jones tells the story of a failed gold prospector. After two years of finding no more than a few flecks of the precious metal, the unlucky man is giving up his search. "Farewell to the gold / that never I found," he sings. "Goodbye to the nuggets / that somewhere abound. / For it’s only when dreaming / that I see them gleaming / down in the dark deep underground." If I’m reading the omens correctly, Sagittarius, it’s time for you, too, to say goodbye to a quest that hasn’t panned out. Yes, it’ll be sad. But here’s the happy ending: Within a month of the time you surrender, you’ll be led to a better quest with more chance of success.

CAPRICORN (Dec. 22-Jan. 19):
During your entire life, you have maybe never been as free as you are now from the need to be rescued by some savior. You don’t need anyone to rescue you from your own dark fantasies because, at least for the moment, your bright fantasies have rendered them obsolete. You don’t need anyone to liberate you from oppression or enslavement, because you are fully empowered to do the job yourself. You don’t even need anyone to deliver you from evil, since your recent hard work has made evil allergic to you.

AQUARIUS (Jan. 20-Feb. 18):
The complexity of your current astrological aspects almost overwhelmed me. I couldn’t see how to compose a meaningful oracle in the face of such rich and confounding prospects. I was stumped. Then, as my deadline approached, the unthinkable happened: I decided to goof off. Fleeing my office, I wandered down to the beach, where I strolled aimlessly and emptied my mind. At one point I spied a fortune cookie perched absurdly on top of a fence post. The moment I broke it open and read the fortune inside, I knew I’d found the perfect message for you. It said, "If you have a difficult task, give it to a lazy man. He will find an easier way to do it."

PISCES (Feb. 19-March 20):
In their lust to prove there’s no God, atheists often invoke the existence of suffering. "What kind of deity," one asked me, "allows a child in Darfur to starve to death after seeing soldiers kill his mommy?" While I don’t claim to have the authoritative answer to that accusation, I think it’s worthwhile to consider the possibility that suffering is a gift God gives us in order to prod our evolution. On a personal level, your longing to escape your suffering is a primal force in making you smarter. On a collective level, nothing refines and ennobles us more than our passion to keep others from suffering. For every dead child in Darfur, 100 people in other places on the planet have responded with a radical commitment to create a world in which future Darfurs won’t happen. These are worthy ideas for you to meditate on in the coming weeks. You will have a tremendous capacity to convert your old wounds, as well as the old wounds of others, into brilliant opportunities.

Homework: What’s the most important thing you’ve never done? Testify at FreeWillAstrology.com.

Freewill Astrology

Freewill Astrology

ARIES (March 21-April 19):
Your power symbol for the week is an ant carrying a potato chip. It means you’ll possess so much strength that you’ll be able to hold aloft burdens that are much bigger than you. More than that, Aries. You’ll look graceful doing it. And here’s the kicker. That giant load you carry may ultimately provide nourishment not only for you but also for everyone back at the nest.

TAURUS (April 20-May 20):
Have you ever been filled with a terrible yearning to become something new? Do you know what it’s like to be racked with a ferocious hunger to change your life? Speaking from experience, I know that such a state can sometimes feel heavy and dark. But I’m here to tell you that it can also be a tremendous asset. The key to transforming it into a gift, ironically, is to see it as a gift. So your assignment, Taurus, is to interpret your ache for transformation as a potent blessing. To do so will give you the power to perform magic you can’t even imagine yet.

GEMINI (May 21-June 20):
Ariel was going through a hard time. She’d been weaning herself from a painkiller she’d taken while recovering from surgery. Her cat ran away, and there was a misunderstanding at work. One night while at a nightclub with her friend Leila, she spied her ex-boyfriend kissing some woman. Meltdown ensured. Ariel fled the club and ran sobbing into the street, where she hurled her shoes on top of a passing bus. Leila retrieved her and sat her down on a bench. "Because up until now you’ve displayed such exemplary grace in the face of chaos," Leila said, "I’m giving you a free Crazy Pass. It gives you a karma-free license to temporarily lose your mind." This compassionate humor helped Ariel feel more composed. The rest of the night she partied beautifully, achieving major relief and release without hurting herself. Now, Gemini, in accordance with the omens, I’m awarding you, too, with a free Crazy Pass.

CANCER (June 21-July 22):
It’s finally the right time for you to hear a piece of advice you weren’t ready for before. If I had told you this any earlier, you would have at best misinterpreted it and at worst had no idea what I was talking about. But in recent weeks you’ve recovered a portion of your lost wildness, which means I can confidently reveal the following truth, courtesy of poet Charles Simic: "He who cannot howl will not find his pack."

LEO (July 23-Aug. 22):
There’s oil on Saturn’s moon Titan! NASA reports that its spacecraft Cassini found vast lakes of liquid hydrocarbons. There’s enough, from what I can tell, to supply 40 generations of humans with enough fuel to go joyriding in 5mpg SUVs for 1,000 years. In response to the revelation, militant patriots are already calling for the U.S. to invade and occupy Titan. In related news, I predict that a novel energy source will soon become available for your personal use, Leo. Luckily, it won’t be nearly as hard to tap into as Titan’s riches will be for the oil companies. It’ll also be much better for the environment.

VIRGO (Aug. 23-Sept. 22):
"Whatcha gonna do with your freedom?" asks Lakshmi Devi on "Freedom," a song from her CD Raise a Holy Fire. Here’s what she says she’ll do with hers: "I choose to lose control in the presence of staggering beauty/ I choose to be stripped of what is unreal." In my view, that’s an epically brazen way to use one’s freedom — right up there, in terms of radical moral zeal, with choosing to ease the suffering of everyone you encounter. With these examples to inspire you, Virgo, take some time to make an aggressive new formulation about how you’ll use your growing freedom.

LIBRA (Sept. 23-Oct. 22):
"Partner needed for mission from God," read the classified ad I spied online. "I’m driving across the country in a banana-yellow 1979 Cadillac Seville with a Lionel Richie photo dangling from the rearview mirror and the thousand-page manuscript of my autobiography piled in the trunk. The mission is driving to Mexico to find my biological father, a rancher. Swimming pools will be peed in, convenience stores trashed, and large sunglasses worn. If you accompany me, I’ll pay you $1,000." In calling this to your attention, Libra, I’m not necessarily suggesting you take the guy up on his offer. However, I do hope you’ll be alert for comparable proposals that would reward you for helping interesting characters carry out edgy, inspirational quests.

SCORPIO (Oct. 23-Nov. 21):
If you hurt another person, you hurt yourself. The act of inflicting injury distorts you, making it more difficult for you to be in alignment with your highest potential. The converse is also true. When you hurt yourself, you inevitably hurt others. The damage you cause to yourself diminishes your ability to give your best gifts. Keep this mind, Scorpio, as you celebrate Do No Harm Week. Be scrupulous in your intention to practice non-violence in every way you can imagine.

SAGITTARIUS (Nov. 22-Dec. 21):
Farmers in Morocco can earn 40 times more money by growing marijuana instead of avocados or tomatoes. Meanwhile, my friend René brings in 10  times the salary she used to make as a secretary by working as a stripper at a nightclub. That means she can devote less time to earning a living and has more time to do what she loves, which is playing music. I expect that you’ve received or will soon receive a comparable opportunity or temptation, Sagittarius. I’m not sure what the morally correct action will be. But I do urge you to try to put your long-term interests above your short-term interests.

CAPRICORN (Dec. 22-Jan. 19):
When the first George Bush ran for U.S. president in 1988, he worried that he and his wife Barbara appeared less affectionate in public than their opponents, Michael and Kitty Dukakis. "Sweetsie," he wrote to her, "Look at how Mike and Kitty do it. Try to be closer in, more romantic on camera. I am practicing the loving look, and the creeping hand. Yours for better TV and more demonstrable affection. Your sweetie-pie-coo-coo." Though my moral principles make it tough to ask you to imitate any president named Bush, it’s my astrological duty to do that, at least in this one matter. Your Love Quotient has got to go way, way up. So please: Practice the loving look and the creeping hand. And find an excuse to call someone "sweetie-pie-coo-coo."  [Source: My Dear President: Letters Between Presidents and Their Wives.]

AQUARIUS (Jan. 20-Feb. 18):
How do I come up with your forecasts? First I meditate on the chart of the current astrological configurations. Then I say this prayer to the higher powers: "Please help me tune in to the message that is most important for Aquarians to hear." After that I close my eyes and release my creative mind into the tidal swells of the collective unconscious, suggesting that it find an image or phrase or story that captures the essence of the next step you need to take. Right now, for instance, I’m getting a vision of you not relying on me, but rather exercising the initiative to hunt down the question that’s most important for you to ask right now.

PISCES (Feb. 19-March 20):
Rumor has it that you are overflowing with so many fresh, hot ideas that you can’t use them fast enough. So why not give some away? Like for instance donate a few to me. I’ll be glad to take them off your hands and find a decent home for them. If I use your brilliant notions to make lots of money, I may even give you a kickback. So don’t let your surplus of brainstorms bog you down, Pisces. Send your excess to me at uaregod@comcast.net. (P.S. In case you can’t tell, I’m joking. In fact, I’d love it if you kept all your smart ideas for yourself, and worked expeditiously to turn every one of them into some practical improvement in your life.)

Homework: What part of the past are you still enslaved to? What can you do to free yourself? Testify at FreeWillAstrology.com.

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