Free Will Astrology: October 22 through 28

ARIES [March 21–April 19] Our government spends a fortune on its armed forces—almost as much as all the other nations of the world combined. We are by far the most weaponized empire, with 761 military bases in over 100 countries. If our military costs were cut down to a more reasonable size—say, the same as China's—we'd have a trillion-dollar bonus to deal with the financial infection that erupted here. Keeping that in mind as a metaphor, make this your hypothesis: By reducing the hostility and judgmental ire that you personally generate, you'll be far more likely to navigate your way toward prosperity.

TAURUS [April 20–May 20] The days leading up to the national election feature a rare opposition between Saturn (symbolizing the past) and Uranus (the future). So, we might expect there to be a showdown between what has been and what will be, not only on a collective level but also in our personal realms. In what areas of your life do you think that will materialize, Taurus? Identify those hot spots, then get to work coordinating synergistic interactions between the seemingly contrary forces.

GEMINI [May 21–June 20] Write the number 10, followed by 11 zeroes. Our Milky Way galaxy has that many stars. Write a 10, followed by 12 zeroes. That's the size of America's national debt in dollars. Now, promise me that for the next month, you will avoid absorbing any data like the kind I just threw at you. Worrying about the big financial picture would not only be fruitless but would distract you from your main tasks. Regard the crisis as an excellent opportunity to shed materialistic obsessions and live more humbly. Sublimate your buy-ological urges into biological urges.

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CANCER [June 21–July 22] As the stock markets came crashing down, a different kind of global devastation received scant notice. The World Conservation Congress revealed that 25 percent of the planet's mammal species and one out of eight birds are close to extinction. We're not just talking about exotic animals in remote hideaways, but rabbits and cardinals and turtledoves. As you meditate on how to reinvent yourself in the wake of the financial chaos, please hold a vigil in your heart for the endangered creatures. The two crises are related: The greed to turn everything into a means of generating money has led humans to both despoil nature and risk the crazy gambles that have savaged the economy. The more you understand that, the better your intuition will be as you make decisions affecting your future relationship with money.

LEO [July 23–August 22] The Daily Show did a mock biography of your fellow Leo, Barack Obama, poking fun at the adoration he inspires in millions of people around the world: Every time he speaks, said the narrator, "an angel has an orgasm." According to my analysis, you now have a scaled-down version of that power. You may not incite the same intensity of pleasure in the heavenly hosts, but you could definitely unleash eruptions of raw enthusiasm in numerous humans. I suggest that, like Obama, you channel it in service to a cause beyond your own selfish interests.

VIRGO [August 23–September 22] When Uranus comes into play, as it is now, initiate experiments that will expedite the arrival of future blessings. Pushing beyond comforting habits, thrive by going in quest of unfashionable beauty and wild justice. The symbolic nature of Saturn is different. It invites you to creatively limit and discipline yourself so that fate isn't forced to. It so happens, Virgo, that Uranus and Saturn are now poised in opposition to each other. Will they work at cross-purposes? Or is there a way for you to get them to work together? More than you imagine, you have the power to affect how they interact in your personal sphere.

LIBRA [September 23–October 22] "I cannot tell if the day is ending, or the world, or if the secret of secrets is inside me again." So wrote Jane Kenyon, translating Russian poet Anna Akhmatova. Right now, that's a feeling many of us have. We're either on the verge of freaking out, half-expecting some new calamity to befall the world, or we're awash in wonder, catching glimpses of the miraculous flow that's hidden just below the surface of everyday chaos. We're tantalizingly close to understanding that everything is proceeding exactly as it should. In the coming weeks, this excruciating poignancy will peak for you. Regard it as a gift—as a difficult blessing that has the potential to free you of your illusions.

SCORPIO [October 23–November 21] What do you do when you're squeezed between the demands of authority and the need to rebel? What do you draw on when the person you have always been starts to evolve into a new form that you don't recognize? You've come to a fork in the road, Scorpio, when you will be asked to deal with these questions on a larger scale than before. My advice? Study your past so thoroughly that you'll be able to keep it from repeating itself, and open your mind to possibilities you've rarely considered.

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