FREE WILL ASTROLOGY: Wednesday, January 30, 2003

ARIES (March 21-April 19): ďA man is rich in proportion to the things he can afford to let alone,Ē said Henry David Thoreau. That definition of wealth, Aries, is quite apropos for you right now. Thereís never been a better time for you to declare total amnesty for everyone whoís ever slighted you. Beyond being a nice thing to do, forgiving and forgetting would serve your ambitions in ways you cannot yet foresee. (Plus you would get some free kisses and hugs.)

TAURUS (April 20-May 20): Years ago I lived in a rundown old house in rural North Carolina. The $50-a-month rent was steep considering that there was no running water and most of the windows were broken when I moved in. I bathed in well water, dipped up in a bucket and heated on my puny gas stove. When my food stamps ran out each month, Iíd ride my one-speed bike six miles to a local college cafeteria, to scavenge scraps that students left on their plates. I hope this vignette inspires you, Taurus, to recall in detail the lowest period of your life, and take inventory of how far youíve come. Imagine a future thatís as much an improvement over now as now is over then.

GEMINI (May 21-June 20): The Gemini cabbie who took me to the airport told me that besides driving 60 hours a week, heís working on a screenplay that has garnered interest from two agents. Meanwhile, the Gemini carousel operator at the zoo confided that before work each morning she spends an hour writing grants that could help her start a tutoring program for homeless kids. I have a message for all you Geminis whose big dreams havenít been getting anywhere near your full attention: Itís time to kick a labor of love into high gear; to transform a hobby into a vocation; to take a giant step towards graduating from your amateur status and turning pro.

CANCER (June 21-July 22): When will your urges for adventure boil over, Cancerian? When will it become impossible for you to keep ignoring the call of illuminating temptations and exotic sanctuaries? When will you finally give in to your longing to escape and wander? The omens suggest the turning point will come soon, that the vision of a brave quest is already simmering on your imaginationís frontier. Where will the mysterious awakening lead you? To the ends of the earth? To the heart of a familiar stranger? To the gritty depths of your dreams?

LEO (July 23-Aug. 22): Jump up and down on a bed with your pajamas on inside out as you laugh like a horny hyena and try to lick your left elbow. Apply edible, jalapeno-flavored body paint to your thighs as you pant like an exuberant dog and listen to the song ďLove is the rug.Ē Rub caramel on your ear lobe as you recite passages from your favorite holy book in your sexiest voice. And then, Leo, dream up even more techniques for getting yourself in the mood to try wilder, looser, funnier love.

VIRGO (Aug. 23-Sept. 22): Youíre starting to resemble the fruit of a prickly pear cactus: covered with sharp, inedible spikes on the outside but soft and delectable in your hidden places. Thereís probably a good reason for this, so I wonít ask you to change. Donít be surprised or upset, though, if people act as if theyíve been stung when they brush up against you. And if you care about them, be quick to let them know how to work around the thorny exterior and get to the good parts within.

LIBRA (Sept. 23-Oct. 22): Youíre looking especially fine this week. If youíre ever going to be asked to do a modeling job, this might be the time. You also smell really good, Libra, and your pheromones are probably enticing more than your usual number of admirers. A cautionary note: Even though your exceptionally radiant and fragrant persona may bring you joy and attention, it could also cause a bit of confusion. Not everyone who comes under your spell will know who you really are or what he or she wants from you.

SCORPIO (Oct. 23-Nov. 21): In the coming week, Scorpio, I suggest that you check into a motel in a small town where no one knows you and do nothing but lie around and read books that will change your life. Or picnic on 15 different flavors of ice cream in your warm living room, in the company of a deep-thinker who would never judge or criticize you. Induce a waking dream, a kind of do-it-yourself movie-in-your-mindís-eye, in which you audition potential muses for a starring role in your inspirations a few weeks from now.

SAGITTARIUS (Nov. 22-Dec. 21): Last week I urged you to hold a Purge the Junk Party, inspired by a young Sagittarian who celebrated his seventh birthday at his favorite spot, a garbage dump. Thereís another element of his story thatís apropos to your life right now. Critics often tell his mother she should redirect her son away from trash. Her response: ďThis is his passion. Whatever his interest is, I support it.Ē Iíd like you Sagittarians to give yourself this same unconditional support in the coming weeks. Be your own perfect mother. Nurture, donít judge, the fascinations that are ripening in you, even if others regard them as dross.

CAPRICORN (Dec. 22-Jan. 19): To be of service to my readers, I have to stay abreast of the latest wrinkles, but I hate to be just another media parasite exploiting the disposable issue-of-the-moment. The truth is more important to me than whatís popular. Youíre a lot like me in this regard, Capricorn. And sometimes that interferes with your ability to enjoy the fringe benefits of good old frivolous nonsense. But donít worry about any of that now. Your commitment to whatís authentic and long-lasting will serve you well in the coming weeks.

AQUARIUS (Jan. 20-Feb. 18): The angel Gabriel played a role in stories dear to three major religions. He was an advisor to the Old Testament Jewish prophet Daniel. He gave the word to Mary that she was pregnant with a soul whoíd call himself the ďSon of God.Ē And he delivered the entire text of the Koran to Mohammed. Iím not necessarily saying youíll be visited by this versatile angel, although, who knows? But I do predict, Aquarius, that youíll have a close brush with an influence that awakens you to mind-blowing truths. Like Gabriel, this influence will deliver insights that are beyond the grasp of your current beliefs. To understand them, youíll have to temporarily put aside your theories about how the world works.

PISCES (Feb. 19-March 20): ďDear Dr. Brezsny: I donít like being stood up, but I try to be forgiving and not take it personally, whether itís a date or a friend. Lately, though, Iíve had to endure a new version of this crap: God Himself has stood me up twice. Itís hard not to come to the conclusion that thereís something wrong with me. Do you have any insight, O Wise Guy? ó Paranoid Pisces.Ē Dear Paranoid: Godís not being mean; Heís merely trying to motivate you. He wants you to get so mad that youíll push through your passivity, and never again put up with anyone making promises they donít keep.

Homework: What do you like best about the part of you that is least evolved and needs most work? Write

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