FREE WILL ASTROLOGY
Week of August 7
© Copyright 2008 Rob Brezsny
ARIES (March 21-April 19): Do you get aroused from squeezing balloons until they explode? Do you quiver with delight as you watch popcorn pop? Have you ever been patient enough to stand in front of a ripe flower bud for hours to witness its slow explosion into full opening? If you answered yes to any of those questions, you’re in for an orgasmically pleasing week, Aries. Lots of things are going to change into something else through the process of eruption or sprouting or bursting forth. I bet you’ll dream of undersea volcanoes spurting.
TAURUS (April 20-May 20): In my vision of your ideal future, you would spend the next two weeks both way out on the frontier and yet close to home. Paradoxical? Yes, but that’s the magic and mystery of the unusual opportunity you have before you. Don’t just take my word for it, Taurus: Meditate on how you could wander free on the outskirts of everything you know even as you feel as stable and secure as a monarch in your castle. Be on a far-flung adventure even as you draw deeply from the mother lode. Enjoy the pleasures of unexplored territory as you draw on the power of the familiar.
GEMINI (May 21-June 20): Although the platypus is technically a furry mammal, a new study of its genetic code reveals that it also has some qualities common to birds and reptiles. It lays eggs and has venom like a snake and a bill like a duck. Sounds like it’s the perfect creature to serve as your totem in the coming week, Gemini. Life will bring you unexpected mixtures and improbable hybrids. You won’t be able to make sense of your experience if you rely on your usual categories. And I think you’ll find that the best way to attract good fortune will be to weave together threads of different colors and textures.
CANCER (June 21-July 22): Write down five exciting things you love to do or think about. Take this list with you everywhere you go. On another piece of paper, name five fears or unpleasant thoughts that demoralize you. Put this list at the back of your closet. For the next seven days, try to refrain from letting your mind wander to the things on the bad list. Meanwhile, undertake an aggressive campaign to cultivate, seek out and enjoy the five exciting things that you love to do and think about. In fact, any time you notice your attention veering toward the negative stuff, immediately steer it toward the positive. Don’t worry, this exercise won’t turn you into a brain-dead optimist. After all, you’ll only do it for a week. The items on the second list will still be there when you’re done. Or will they? Maybe they will have mutated into something more manageable.
LEO (July 23-Aug. 22): When British rock legend David Bowie came to America for his first tour in 1973, he said he felt like a fly in a glass of milk. He was half-drowning in a flood of interesting new sensations and perceptions, while at the same time he was greedily drinking it all in, stoked with fascinated joy. According to my astrological projections, Leo, you’re in that fly-in-the-milk state yourself, or will soon be.
VIRGO (Aug. 23-Sept. 22): The light in your eyes looks a little foggy, Virgo. The fire in your belly seems to be smoldering, and your brain has been hiccupping. At least your heart isn’t exactly broken. (Though I’m tempted to make suggestions about how to fix it anyway.) Am I worried? Not at all. After the nonstop breakthroughs you enjoyed there for a while, I expected that you would eventually need time to slow down and let everything sink in. So I suggest that you cultivate a state of low-key contentment as your deep mind integrates the transformations you set in motion.
LIBRA (Sept. 23-Oct. 22): I’m not a fan of renowned free-market guru Milton Friedman, who died in 2006. His philosophy has wreaked more suffering on the world than any since Communism. (Read Naomi Klein’s “The Shock Doctrine: The Rise of Disaster Capitalism” for the gross details.) There’s one particular keystone of his belief system that is especially important for you to rebel against in the coming weeks. He said that “only a crisis—actual or perceived—produces real change.” In the name of all you hold holy, Libra, I ask you to prove him wrong. Show yourself and everyone who looks to you for inspiration that real change can be motivated by an exuberant lust for life—by a generous longing to risk adventures that will yield greater rewards.
SCORPIO (Oct. 23-Nov. 21): The guy who gave his name to North and South America was a pickle salesman and writer as well as an explorer. After a stint in Spain selling his vitamin C-rich pickles to outbound ships, Amerigo Vespucci got to travel to the New World in 1499 and 1502. The stories he penned about his adventures there were highly imaginative, like his description of giant native women with huge breasts who employed poisonous fluids extracted from insects to super-size their husbands’ penises. I nominate Amerigo to be your role model in the coming weeks, Scorpio. May you, too, do what comes natural and be your funky self in ways that lead to glory and renown. (My source for the info about Amerigo is Tony Horwitz’s book “A Voyage Long and Strange: Rediscovering the New World.”)
SAGITTARIUS (Nov. 22-Dec. 21): “Two chemicals called actin and myosin evolved eons ago to allow the muscles in insect wings to contract and relax,” writes Deepak Chopra in “The Book of Secrets.” “Today, the same two proteins are responsible for the beating of the human heart.” Likewise, Sagittarius, actions you take or ideas you embrace in the coming days will send reverberations deep into your future. They will show up many years hence in altered form, but imprinted with the essence you give them now. This is your chance to bestow a profound blessing on the person you will later become.
CAPRICORN (Dec. 22-Jan. 19): Here’s a passage from Kurt Vonnegut’s novel “Breakfast of Champions”: “Kilgore Trout once wrote a short story which was a dialogue between two pieces of yeast. They were discussing the possible purposes of life as they ate sugar and suffocated in their own excrement. Because of their limited intelligence, they never came close to guessing that they were making champagne.” This scenario has some resemblances to what you’re doing, Capricorn. Fortunately, you’re much smarter than the two pieces of yeast, and so you will not do the equivalent of drowning in crap. But I bet you’ll create something comparable to champagne.
AQUARIUS (Jan. 20-Feb. 18): “The question of evil,” writes psychologist James Hillman, “refers primarily to the anaesthetized heart, the heart that has no reaction to what it faces, thereby turning the variegated sensuous face of the world into monotony, sameness, oneness.” Your assignment in the coming week, Aquarius, is to triumph over this kind of evil in yourself. By whatever ingenious and imaginative means you can dream up, you must awaken your heart fully to the unpredictable, ever-shifting beauty and ugliness you encounter. Drink it all in like a thirsty wanderer who has just emerged from a long trek lost in the desert. [The source of Hillman’s quote is his book “The Thought of the Heart and the Soul of the World.”]
PISCES (Feb. 19-March 20): “Dear Rob: If you were, like me, setting out on a ten-year project to become a beautiful truth-teller, having the simple goal of actually expressing the things that Everyone Ought To Say But Doesn’t, what would you do? Other than to bother your favorite truth-tellers for advice, of course! – Aspiring Fount of Truth.” Dear Aspiring Fount: In its highest expression, the Piscean style of telling the truth is ripe with emotional intelligence and a deep thoughtfulness that’s devoted to staying focused on the big picture. One of the best ways to increase your mastery of this approach is to regularly tell yourself the truth about yourself with kick-ass kindness.
Homework: Make a game out of a situation you’re bored by or in dread of. In other words, find a way to play in a place where you’ve been stuck. Report results to RealAstrology.com. Click on “Email Rob.”