Horoscope

ARIES(March 21–April 19): In 1986, an accident at the Chernobyl power plant in Ukraine caused a nuclear meltdown. Radioactive waste spewed into the air, making the area uninhabitable. Twenty years later, humans are still absent, but wildlife is thriving. Native populations of badgers, wild boars, and deer have multiplied, and species that had disappeared before the disaster, like the lynx and eagle owl, have returned in abundance. Birds are even nesting in the steel-and-concrete "sarcophagus" built over the exploded reactor. This is not to say that everything's peachy. There are many problems lingering from the original devastation. I propose to you, Aries, that the situation in Chernobyl is a metaphor for something in your personal life. A place within you that endured a trauma has rebounded surprisingly, though it's still wounded. Take inventory, then raise the ante on the healing process.

TAURUS(April 20–May 20): The U.K. is populated by hordes of "overweight, alco-pop-swilling, sex-and-celebrity-obsessed television addicts," according to the travel book Rough Guide to England. I recommend, therefore, that you avoid traveling to that part of the world if you're a sensitive person susceptible to taking on the attitudes of the people around you. The astrological omens suggest that you should take stringent measures to exorcise your impulses to indulge in excessive consumption of bad food, numbing intoxicants, superficial sex, dumbed-down entertainment, and mindless gossip about famous lightweights. For that matter, you should be ruthless in sealing yourself off from influences that tend to bring out the worst and mediocre parts of you.

GEMINI(May 21–June 20): The wife of pro baseball pitcher Kris Benson has made public her desire to experience a wide array of erotic diversity while remaining faithful to her husband. "I would like to have sex with Kris in every major-league stadium in North America," Anna Benson told the press. She's your role model for the coming week, Gemini. Your assignment is to expand the variety and explore the frontiers of your familiar pleasures.

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CANCER(June 21–July 22): A reader named Amanda Jarosz has offered an alternative to the traditional name for our astrological sign: Canswer, a blend of "can" and "answer." It's not a viable long-term solution, but it would make a lot of sense in the immediate future. Here's why. According to my analysis of the omens, you'll be able to get a useful answer to just about any question, as long as you craft it with thoughtful precision. So, for example, "How can I get more love?" is a sloppy formulation that won't yield fruitful insights, whereas "What long-term plan can I set in motion that will help me earn more of the care and blessings I deserve from doing what I'm good at?" will be a gem.

LEO(July 23–Aug. 22): A few weeks ago, eight-year-old Harrison Vonderau was playing golf with his dad on a course in Cleveland when he shot a hole in one. Father and son experienced an even more shocking delight 20 minutes later when the boy scored yet another hole in one. It was an almost unbelievable accomplishment for anyone, let alone a kid. Harrison is your role model for the coming week, Leo. I predict that a young part of you—either your inner child or your inner teenager—will score an unlikely and spectacular coup, the equivalent of two holes in one.

VIRGO(Aug. 23–Sept. 22): Of all the times in your life when you have been in captivity, this has to be one of the least arduous and frustrating ever. I'll go so far as to say that I have rarely seen a more beautiful prisoner than you; for a drudge in bondage, you're ravishing. As hard as it may be to contemplate, however, it's almost time to escape. Your dark though sexy night of the soul will soon come to an end. Don't you dare linger any longer than you have to.

LIBRA(Sept. 23–Oct. 22): USA Todaydid a profile on business guru Doug Hall, who's famous for his unconventional approaches to stimulating creativity. One of his techniques is "left brain, right brain storming." Transcending plain old everyday brainstorming, it's done with a team that blends people who specialize in rational, linear thought (left brain) and those who are skilled at letting their imaginations go a little crazy (right brain). May I suggest you try it out? The coming week is a perfect time to undo your attraction to what has always worked before and start heading in the direction of the unknown future.

SCORPIO(Oct. 23–Nov. 21): Physicists at Washington University in St. Louis have found that introducing disorder into certain messy situations may actually spawn order. It happened as they worked with a network of interconnected pendulums that were all waving around chaotically. When they brought random forces to bear on the tumult, the pendulums locked into sync. The physicists' results may not necessarily imply a universal law you should invoke in every circumstance, but they do happen to be applicable to you right now. The more unpredictable, effervescent, and even unruly you are—especially in the face of confusing circumstances—the better chance you will have of generating elegant success, and maybe even some beauty, truth, and love as well.

SAGITTARIUS(Nov. 22–Dec. 21): In Britain's last census, 390,000 people declared themselves to be members of the Jedi faith—a fictional religion depicted in the Star Wars movies. That was heartening to those of us who lobby for a wider array of belief systems. My ultimate hope, however, is for there to be 6.5 billion different religions—a singular form of worship for each person on the planet. It happens to be a perfect astrological phase for you to advance that cause, Sagittarius: to break out of the pack and fashion your own unique spiritual path. It's also an excellent time to dream up a new political party that intimately reflects every one of your idiosyncratic views and to identify yourself as a member of a brand-new racial or ethnic group that has never before been defined. Whip up your own niches!

CAPRICORN(Dec. 22–Jan. 19): Recently my nine-year-old bike has developed an unfortunate glitch. When I ride up hills, and only when I ride up hills, the chain periodically gets lodged in the transmission mechanism. If I act quickly, taking action the instant I hear the incipient grinding noise, there's something I can do to fix the problem and keep from lurching to a halt: I have to temporarily pedal backward. Doing that frees the chain from its stuck place. So picture this scene: As I ascend, I'm able to push forward for long stretches, but now and then have to pedal in reverse, slipping backward a few feet. From what I can tell, Capricorn, this is similar to the rhythm your life has right now. It's OK to bitch about it, as I do during my travail, but you should also feel grateful for the way it's building your strength and character. PS: I predict you will reach the top by September.

AQUARIUS(Jan. 20—Feb. 18):The often inebriated Calamity Jane character on HBO's TV show Deadwood uttered words that are important for you to take to heart. I'll paraphrase her observation in order to streamline her drunken syntax: "Every day you have to figure out how to live all over again." Of course this is always true, Aquarius, but it's even more intensely apt for you right now. The good news is that you'll be unusually skilled at deciphering the ever changing rules of the master game, and you're also likely to have maximum fun while doing so.

PISCES(Feb. 19—March 20): "Anger or bitterness toward those who have hurt you will block your path to higher ground," said inspirational author Vernon Howard. "You can have anger toward people or you can have freedom from people, but you can't have both." I suggest you make that one of your guiding thoughts in the coming week, Pisces. An undreamed-of burst of liberation is now possible for you if you compel yourself to experiment with radical generosity on the wild frontiers of forgiveness.


Homework Give yourself some slack in a situation where you typically back yourself into a corner and tie yourself up. Report on your experience at freewillastrology.com.

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