By Alex Distefano
By Scott Snowden
By Anna Merlan
By Steve Almond
By Jena Ardell
By Jon Campbell
By Alan Scherstuhl
By Tessa Stuart
SAGITTARIUS(Nov. 22Dec. 21): "Americans live inside their own private echo chambers," says syndicated writer Matt Zoller Seitz, "endlessly revisiting things they already know they like and avoiding exposure to anything new and different." Your assignment this week, Sagittarius, is to ask yourself if you fit Seitz's description, and thenif you doto escape your private echo chamber. So. for instance, if you're a tattooed pagan performance artist, attend a rodeo or NASCAR race. If you're a Christian Girl Scout leader, listen to Ani DiFranco or Radiohead, or read Noam Chomsky's radical critiques of American foreign policy. If you're an atheistic intellectual, take a workshop in ecstatic Sufi dancing or a class in Buddhist meditation. I think you catch my drift.
CAPRICORN(Dec. 22Jan. 19): I'd love to see you reach out to the people who you think should have reached out to you by now. I'd love to see you heal rifts with former allies and rebuild bridges you burned down. Even if it feels like a slightly awkward compromise, I'd love to see you offer your services to X factors and wild cards and loose cannons that aren't exactly making the best use of their powers. How about it, Capricorn? Are you willing to bend a little to gain a lot? Can you imagine giving more slack to flawed possibilities, hoping that your largesse will help them fix their flaws?
AQUARIUS(Jan. 20Feb. 18): The astrological omens are unambiguous: In the coming weeks, the entire universe will be conspiring to help you add to your assets, increase your value, and acquire more resources. Does that mean you'll get a raise or inherit your great-uncle's ostrich farm? Does it mean you'll enroll in a training program to upgrade your skills and expand your know-how? Or does it mean you'll cultivate a previously underdeveloped part of your personality that will then become more attractive and desirable? I can't say for sure, Aquarius. How it all unfolds will depend on your prioritiesand on how aggressively you cooperate with the universal conspiracy.
PISCES(Feb. 19March 20): In her book For the Time Being, Annie Dillard says that throughout history many people have thought civilization was on the verge of collapse. Around 300 B.C., Hindus believed they were living in a "degenerate and unfortunate time" known as the Kali Yugathe lowest point in the great cosmic cycle. In A.D. 426, the Christian writer Augustine mourned that the world was in its last days. In the 1800s, renowned Hasidic rabbi Nachman grieved for the world's "widespread atheism and immorality." Dillard offers more examples, concluding, "There never was a more holy age than ours, and never a less. . . . There is no whit less enlightenment under the tree by your street than there was under the Buddha's bo tree." Go sit under that tree, Pisces. The time for your awakening is now at hand.