By Rob Brezsny
ARIES (March 21-April 19): Sarah Bernhardt (1844-1923) was called “the most famous actress the world has ever known.” She did a few films in the early days of the cinema, but most of her work was in the theater. At age 70, she played the role of the 13-year-old Juliet in Shakespeare’s “Romeo and Juliet.” I commend her on her refusal to act her age, and recommend that you make a comparable effort in the coming weeks. For example, if you’re in your twenties, try something you thought you wouldn’t do until you were at a very ripe age. If you’re over 50, be 25 for a while. It’s an excellent time to do this kind of time traveling.
TAURUS (April 20-May 20): You might have to use primitive means to accomplish modern wonders. It may be necessary to hearken back to what worked in the past in order to serve the brightest vision of the future. Take your cue from Luis Soriano, a saintly teacher who carries a library of 120 books on the back of a donkey as he meanders around the back country of Columbia, helping poor kids learn how to read.
GEMINI (May 21-June 20): Humans have been baking and eating bread for at least 5,000 years. But it wasn’t until the twentieth century that anyone figured out a fast and easy way to cut it into thin, precise pieces. Then Otto Rohwedder, who had been working on the project for sixteen years, produced a machine that cut a loaf into individual slices. I bring him to your attention, Gemini, because I think you are in a phase of your life when you could very possibly create an innovation that would be as intimately revolutionary as Rohwedder’s was for the masses. In fact, why aren’t you working on it right now?
CANCER (June 21-July 22): In order to heal deep-seated problems, people may need to engage in long-term psychotherapy, patiently chipping away at their mental blocks for many years. But some lucky sufferers get their neuroses zapped virtually overnight, either with the help of a monumental event that shocks them out of their malaise or through the work of a brilliant healer who uses a few strokes of kamikaze compassion to creatively destroy their deluded fixations. I think you’re now a candidate for this type of correction, Cancerian.
LEO (July 23-Aug. 22): To discover the most useful truths, you will have to peek behind the curtains and root around to see what’s cloaked in the dark and maybe even explore messes you’d rather not touch. What complicates your task is that the fake truths may be extra loud and shiny, distracting you from the down and dirty stuff with their relentless come-ons. But I have confidence in your ability to outmaneuver the propaganda, Leo. You shall know the hype, and knowing the hype will set you free.
VIRGO (Aug. 23-Sept. 22): The evil geniuses of the advertising industry are hard at work in their labs dreaming up seductive new mojo to artificially stimulate your consumer lusts. Meanwhile, the media’s relentless campaign to get you to believe in debilitating fantasies and divert you from doing what’s really good for you has reached a fever pitch. And here’s the triple whammy: Even more than usual, some of your relatives and cohorts are angling to convince you that what pleases them is what pleases you. So is there any hope that you will be able to hone in on what truly excites you? (It’s especially important that you do so right now.) The answer, in my opinion, is a qualified yes—IF you’re willing to conduct intensive research into the idiosyncratic secrets of what makes you happy; and IF you’re not scared to discover who you are when you’re turned on all the way.
LIBRA (Sept. 23-Oct. 22): If you were living in Greece in the fifth century B.C., I’d urge you to bathe in the healing spring at the shrine of Asklepios in Athens. If you were in nineteenth-century France, I’d recommend that you trek to the sacred shrine at Lourdes—being sure to crawl the last half mile on your hands and knees—and sip from the curative waters there. But since you’re a busy twenty-first-century sophisticate and may have a limited belief in miracles, I’ll simply suggest that you visit the most interesting tree you know and spill a bottle of pristine water over your head as you confess your sins and ask the sky for forgiveness and sing songs that purify you to the bone.
SCORPIO (Oct. 23-Nov. 21): It’s quite possible that the nature of consciousness is in the midst of a fundamental transformation. The human race seems to be getting more empathetic, more compassionate and even more psychic. Many of us are having experiences that were previously thought to be the province of mystics, such as epiphanies that give us visceral perceptions of the interconnectedness of all life. Even as some traditional religions lose members and devolve into cartoony fundamentalism, there are ever-increasing numbers of intelligent seekers who cultivate a more discerning spiritual awareness outside the decrepit frameworks. If you haven’t been on this bandwagon, Scorpio, now’s a good time to jump on. If you’re already on board, get ready for an accelerated ride.
SAGITTARIUS (Nov. 22-Dec. 21): This week you’ll be working overtime while you sleep. Your dreaming mind will be playing around with solutions to your waking mind’s dilemmas. Your ally, the wild conjurer in the ramshackle diamond-encrusted sanctuary at the edge of the deep dark forest, will be spinning out medicine stories and rounding up help for you. So of course you should keep a pen and notebook by your bed to record the dreams that come. I suggest that you also try to keep the first part of your mornings free of busy work so you can integrate the full impact of the nights’ gifts. And don’t despair if you can’t actually remember any of your nocturnal adventures. Their tasty after-images will remain with you subliminally, giving your logical mind an intuitive edge.
CAPRICORN (Dec. 22-Jan. 19): There’ll be an abundance of unambiguous choices for you to make in the coming days. I’m not implying they’ll be easy, just that the different alternatives will be clearly delineated. To get you warmed up for your hopefully crisp decisions, I’ve compiled a a few exercises. Pick one of each of these pairs: 1. exacting homework or free-form research; 2. pitiless logic or generous fantasies; 3. precise and disciplined communication or heedless self-expression; 4. grazing like a contented sheep or rambling like a restless mountain goat.
AQUARIUS (Jan. 20-Feb. 18): Among Eastern religions, some traditions preach the value of getting rid of your desires. To be righteously attuned to current cosmic rhythms, however, I think you should rebel against that ideal, and instead cultivate a whole host of excellent desires. Use your imagination, please! Here are a few I highly recommend: a desire for a revelation or experience that will steer you away from becoming more like a machine; a desire for a fresh blast of purity from a primal source; a desire for an imaginary pet snake that teaches you how to be more playful with your libidinous energy; and a desire for a jolt of unexpected beauty that reminds you how important it is to always keep a part of your mind untamed.
PISCES (Feb. 19-March 20): I used to have an acupuncturist who, as she poked me with needles, liked to talk about her understanding of Chinese medicine. Once she told me that every human being needs a “heart protector,” which is a body function that’s “like a holy warrior who serves as the queen’s devoted ally.” But the heart protector is not something you’re born with. You’ve got to grow it by building your fortitude and taking care of your body. I think the heart protector will be an apt metaphor for you to play with in the coming weeks, Pisces. It’s going to be an excellent time for you to cultivate any part of your life that gives your heart joy, strength, peace, and integrity.
Homework: Starved for good news? Weary of the nonstop barrage of misery foisted on you by the media? Check this out: http://bit.ly/PronoiaNetwork