Free Will Astrology: December 10 through 17

ARIES [March 21–April 19] It's an ideal time for you to throw a party for all the people you've ever been and all the different selves who live within you now. Invite the teenager who once seethed with frustrated potential and the four-year-old who loved to play. Include the hopeful complainer who stands in the shadows and dares you to ask for more, as well as the brave hero who comes out every now and then to attempt seemingly impossible feats of happiness. Don't forget any of the various personalities who have contributed to making you who you are. Marvel at how good you are at changing.

TAURUS [April 20–May 20] Novelists and actors make a living by using their imaginations to create fictional stories. In recent years, there has emerged a new group of workers whose pretending skills also earn them money. They make imaginary weapons, armor, and other computer-generated gear to sell to people who play online role-playing games like World of Warcraft. I bring this to your attention, Taurus, because you're in a favorable phase to put your imagination to work in practical ways. As soon as you're finished reading this horoscope, start brainstorming about specific things you could do to convert fantasies into real-world wealth.

GEMINI [May 21–June 20] I'm pleased to be able to offer you a Zen riddle that will prepare you for the immediate future. Study it and meditate upon it when dealing with upcoming challenges. Question: What did the big chimney say to the little chimney? Answer: Nothing. Chimneys can't talk. I don't want to explain all the nuances of this helpful conundrum, Gemini, because it'll serve you better if you come to your own conclusions. But I'll get you started: Be vigilant for trick questions. Do you know what red herrings and straw men are? Don't get distracted by them.

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CANCER [June 21–July 22] I've got three related questions for you, Cancerian: 1) Are there any roles you play in which your selfish and unselfish tendencies overlap? 2) What situations allow you to be most completely yourself as you provide a fine service to others? 3) Which of your skills generate the most blessings and gifts? The next 12 months will be a favorable time for you to identify these roles, situations, and skills, and cultivate them to the max. You'll have prime opportunities to express your special genius while doing good deeds.

LEO [July 23–August 22] What country has more sand than any other? With its vast deserts, Saudi Arabia has got to be near the top of the list. Still, the Saudi government forbids the export of sand, worrying that it might eventually run out due to its construction industry's demand. This irrational fear reminds me of you, Leo. You too have a certain bountiful resource that will never be depleted—and yet you're chronically worried that it will. Please adjust your thinking. It's an excellent time to get more realistic about the true nature of your abundance.

VIRGO [August 23–September 22] If you want to learn how best to energize your love life, check out this passage from John Welwood's book, Perfect Love, Imperfect Relationships: Healing the Wound of the Heart: "Everyone knows perfect love in their heart, for the human heart is a direct channel through which absolute love pours into this world. At the same time, human relationships are imperfect expressions of that love. This creates a painful gap between the perfect love we know in our hearts and the imperfect, incomplete ways it is expressed in our relationships. When we imagine that relative human love should be something it is not—absolutely unconditional—we suffer disappointment and wind up distrusting love itself. We also hold grievances against others for not loving us rightly or against ourselves for not having won that love. This gives rise to a universal human wound—the sense of not feeling loved for who we are."

LIBRA [September 23–October 22] "I was walking down the street agonizing over what to do about a particularly troublesome person in my life," writes Tai Moses on Aerophant.com, "when I saw a playing card laying facedown on the sidewalk. I turned it over." It was a joker. Her thoughts turned to the words of the philosopher Alan Watts: "When you get the message, hang up the phone." I hope you'll be inspired by Moses' experience. The best approach to take with your dilemmas is to welcome them as wild cards that will bring you valuable lessons—and just stop worrying about them.

SCORPIO [October 23–November 21] In one episode of Seinfeld, Elaine couldn't get her favorite Chinese restaurant to deliver take-out food to her apartment, because her neighborhood was just beyond the boundary of where the drivers went. But Elaine was determined. She went over to the building across the street, which was within the restaurant's delivery zone, and set up an alternate home for herself in a janitor's closet. I suggest you adopt a similar strategy, Scorpio. If you can't get what you want in the place where you are, shift your location.

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