Free Will Astrology: October 14 through 20

ARIES [March 21–April 19] You say you not only want to be loved, but that you also want to love? Then learn the fantasies and beliefs that hold people's lives together. Be interested in feeling the weight and comfort of their web of memories. Every now and then, dive in and swim along in their stream of consciousness. And be willing to accompany them when they're writhing in their personal hells as well as when they're exploring the suburbs of paradise. All these tasks will be exceptionally worthy of your time in the coming weeks, Aries.

TAURUS [April 20–May 20] Right now, you're like a sulking cherry tree that hasn't bloomed for years but then inexplicably erupts with pink flowers in mid-Autumn. You're like a child prodigy who lost her mojo for a while and then suddenly recovers it when her old mentor comes back into her life after a long absence. You're like a dormant volcano that, without any warning, spurts out a round of seemingly prophetic smoke signals on the eve of a great victory for the whole world.

GEMINI [May 21–June 20] "Dear Rob: Thanks for being a continued source of careful thinking! With the help of you and the ruthless teachers who are my friends, I'm learning the lessons that are important—like how impeccable I have to be with formulating my desires and how precise I have to be in expressing myself. Sometimes, I wish I could just go back to being an aimless street punk in Berkeley. But in the end, I prefer this tough path I've chosen. —Hard-Working Gemini." Dear Hard-Working: This is an excellent phase in the Gemini life cycle to concentrate on what you named: impeccably formulating your desires and expressing yourself precisely.


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CANCER [June 21–July 22] The playwright Colley Cibber thought the Bard's Richard III needed improvement. He made revisions, transposing scenes and inserting new material. For 150 years, Cibber's version was widely performed, replacing Shakespeare's rendition. I suggest you borrow Cibber's strategy in the coming weeks. Take something you like, and personalize it—make it into your own. Be sure to acknowledge the original, of course, but have fun blending your influence with the prototype as you create a useful and amusing hybrid.

LEO [July 23–August 22] The corny but sometimes useful adages of folk wisdom are still being created afresh in the 21st century. Their breeding ground is no longer the tavern or marketplace, as in centuries past, but instead, the Internet. I've plucked one of these gems for you to contemplate: "Noah's Ark was built by amateurs, while the Titanic was built by professionals." How does this apply to you? You're in a phase when a good imagination will count for more than strict logic; when innocent enthusiasm will take you further than know-it-all expertise; and when all the work you do should have a playful spirit fueled by a beginner's mind.

VIRGO [August 23–September 22] To extract enough gold to make a ring, a mining company must process a ton of ore. Also, many writers generate a swamp of unusable sentences on their way to distilling the precise message they want to deliver. Please keep these examples in mind as you evaluate your own progress, Virgo. It may seem like you're moving at a crawl and producing little of worth, but you're on your way to producing the equivalent of a gold ring.

LIBRA [September 23–October 22] Were you ever a tiger in one of your past lives? If so, this would be an excellent time to tap into that power. If you have never lived the life of a tiger, would you be willing to imagine that you did? During the coming week, you will really benefit from being able to call on the kind of intelligence a tiger possesses, as well as its speed, perceptivity, sense of smell, charisma, and beauty. Your homework is to spend 10 minutes envisioning yourself inhabiting the body of a tiger.

SCORPIO [October 23–November 21] Your circumstances aren't as dire as you feared, Scorpio. The freaky monster in the closet is bored with spooking you and will soon be departing the premises. Meanwhile, one of your other tormentors is about to experience some personal sadness that will soften his or her heart toward you. There's more: The paralysis that has been infecting your funny bone will miraculously cure itself, and the scheduled revelation of the rest of your dirty secrets will be summarily canceled. I hope you're not feeling so sorry for yourself that you fail to notice this sudden turn in your luck. It may take an act of will for you to wake up to the new dispensations that are available.

SAGITTARIUS [November 22–December 21] "Jazz music is an intensified feeling of nonchalance," said Françoise Sagan. Keep that in mind, Sagittarius. Whether or not you actually play or listen to jazz, do whatever's necessary to cultivate intensified feelings of nonchalance. It's extremely urgent for you to be blithe and casual. You desperately need to practice non-attachment as you develop your ability to not care so much about things you can't control. You've got to be ferociously disciplined as you transcend the worries and irritations that won't really matter much in the big scheme of things.

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