By Alex Distefano
By Scott Snowden
By Anna Merlan
By Steve Almond
By Jena Ardell
By Jon Campbell
By Alan Scherstuhl
By Tessa Stuart
ARIES [March 21–April 19] When Miley Cyrus appeared on David Letterman, band leader Paul Schaeffer asked if she lip-synchs to pre-recorded music during her performances. Miley replied that she never fakes it. For evidence, she said, anyone could go watch a YouTube clip from one of her concerts. Sometimes she sounds terrible, which proves that she's risking the imperfection of actually singing live. I urge you to follow Miley's lead in your own sphere. In the coming week, you really do need to be as raw as the law allows. Be your authentic self, please—with no Auto-Tune-like enhancements.
TAURUS [April 20–May 20] Here's your mantra: "BIG GREEN LUCK EVERYWHERE." I urge you to say it in the coming days. Sing it to yourself while you're driving your car. Whisper it as a prayer before each meal. "BIG GREEN LUCK EVERYWHERE." Murmur it to the tiny angel looking down at you from the ceiling just before you drop off to sleep. Yell it out as you're dancing beneath the sky. "BIG GREEN LUCK EVERYWHERE." It'll work its magic even if you don't know exactly why you're saying it or what it means.
GEMINI [May 21–June 20] This is an excellent time for you to revamp your relationship with your body. How should you go about it? The first thing to do is formulate your intentions. For example, would you like to feel more perfectly at home in your body? Can you picture yourself working harder to give your body the food and sleep and movement it requires to be at its best? If you have any doubts about how to proceed, ask your body to provide you with clues.
CANCER [June 21–July 22] While growing up, U.S. president Abraham Lincoln lived in Indiana for 14 years. When my friend, Janet, was seven years old, her second-grade class visited the place. While strolling around outside, she found a Band-Aid on the ground and assumed it had once graced a booboo on Old Abe himself. She took it home and used it as a talisman. When she rubbed it on her own wounds, it seemed to have magical healing properties. Only later did she realize that Band-Aids weren't invented until 55 years after Lincoln's death. No matter. The artifact had done a superb job. I predict you will soon find a comparable placebo, Cancerian.
LEO [July 23–August 22] Afghan farmers grow poppies. While most of the crop is converted into opium and heroin, it could just as well be used to create poppy seed bagels—as many as 357 trillion of them. The way I see it, Leo, you have a choice ahead of you: A resource that's neutral in its raw or natural state could be harnessed in a relatively good cause or a not-so-good cause. And I bet you will be instrumental in determining which way it goes.
VIRGO [August 23–September 22] "Nothing is more conducive to peace of mind than not having any opinions at all," said Georg Christoph Lichtenberg, and now I'm offering it for you to use. Try this experiment: For seven days, divest yourself of your opinions. And I mean all of them: opinions about politicians, celebrities, immigration reform, rockabilly music, your friends' choices in mates—everything. For this grace period, be utterly nonjudgmental and open-minded and tolerant. Allow everything to be exactly what it is without any need to wish it were otherwise. By experiment's end, you'll probably feel more relaxed than you have in a long time.
LIBRA [September 23–October 22] The Latin motto "Dulcius ex aspiris" means "Sweetness out of difficulty." It has a different meaning from "relief after difficulty" or "character-building from difficulty." It suggests a scenario in which a challenging experience leads not just to a successful outcome, but also to a delicious, soothing harmony that would not have been possible without the difficulty. This is what I foresee coming for you, Libra.
SCORPIO [October 23–November 21] Give the best gifts you can possibly give. Don't hoard any of the blessings you have at your disposal. It's time to unveil the fullness of your generosity . . . to bestow upon the world the glory of your mojo. Some people will be better able than others to receive and use your zesty offerings, and it's OK to favor them with more of your magnanimity. On the other hand, don't spend too long worrying about the fine points of how to disseminate your wealth. The important thing is to let it flow like a river fresh from eternity.
SAGITTARIUS [November 22–December 21] "Do not think you will necessarily be aware of your own enlightenment," said Zen Buddhist teacher Dogen. Which leads me to say: "Do not think you will necessarily be aware of becoming a role model and potent influence." The way I see it, either of those developments may happen in the coming weeks. Without suffering any pangs of self-consciousness, you could suddenly find yourself thrust into a higher, brighter, more powerful state of being. I doubt there'll be any stress or strain involved. Rather, it will naturally occur while you're being your strong-minded, expansive self, trying simply to rearrange the world to conform to your vision of paradise.
CAPRICORN [December 22–January 19] Soon it will probably be time for you to wrap up the Season of Exploration. You've surveyed the outlands and fringe areas enough for now, right? I'm guessing that you've reconnoitered the forbidden zones so thoroughly that you may not need to do any more probing. Or am I wrong about this? Maybe your brushes with exotic creatures and tempting adventures have whetted your appetite for even more escapades. Are you ready to rein in your risk-taking, or are you hungry for more?
AQUARIUS [January 20–February 18] When I was living in Los Angeles in the summer of 1986, I had a memorable dream. In the dream, I was dancing with God. As best as I can describe it, the Divine Wow was a female whirlwind exuding cool blue fire and singing ecstatic melodies. Now and then I caught a glimpse of something that resembled a face and body, but mostly she was a sparkling fluidic vortex that I moved in and out of as we floated and tumbled and leaped. The contact was so vivid and visceral that from that day forward I never again said, "I believe in God." My experience was as real as making love with a human being; "belief" was irrelevant. I predict that you will soon have a comparable encounter with a primal force, Aquarius—whatever passes for "God" in your world.
PISCES [February 19–March 20] The eighth-century theologian known as the Venerable Bede compared our existence to a sparrow that flies in the window of a royal castle while the king is enjoying a winter feast with his entourage. Outside, a snowstorm is raging. Inside, there's a big fire in the hearth that keeps everyone warm. But the sparrow doesn't stay in this welcoming place; it quickly flies out another window on the other side of the dining room, refraining from plucking any of the delicious scraps of food the revelers have discarded. Bede says that the sparrow's actions are like ours in our own approach to living our lives. Well, guess what, Pisces: I don't think that will be true for you in the coming months. Judging from the astrological omens, I suspect that once you fly into the feast room, you won't depart like a restless, confused wanderer. You will linger.
Homework: What's the one thing you would change about yourself if you could? And why can't you? Go to RealAstrology.com and click "Email Rob."