Free Will Astrology: September 28 - October 4, 2011

ARIES [March 21–April 19] In accordance with your current astrological omens, I challenge you to cultivate a special kind of receptivity—a rigorously innocent openness that will allow you to be penetrated by life's beauty. To understand the exact nature of this receptivity, study Abraham Maslow's definition of real listening: to listen "without presupposing, classifying, improving, controverting, evaluating, approving, or disapproving, without dueling what is being said, without rehearsing the rebuttal in advance, without free-associating to portions of what is being said so that succeeding portions are not heard at all."

TAURUS [April 20–May 20] Government officials in southern Sudan are proposing to build cities in fantastic shapes. The regional capital of Juba would be re-created to resemble a rhinoceros, as seen from the air. The town of Yambio is destined to look like a pineapple, and the city of Wau will be a giraffe. I'm confused by all this, because I know that most of the people in South Sudan live on less than a dollar a day. Is that really how they want their country's wealth spent? Please consider the possibility, Taurus, that there are also some misplaced priorities in your own sphere right now. Allocate your resources with high discernment, please.

GEMINI [May 21–June 20] You have cosmic clearance to fall deeply, madly, and frequently in love, Gemini. In fact, it's OK with the gods of fate and the angels of karma if you swell up with a flood of infatuation and longing. The only stipulation those gods and angels insist on is that you do not make any rash decisions or huge life changes while in the throes of this stupendous vortex. Don't quit your job, for instance, or sell all your belongings, or dump your temporarily out-of-favor friends and loved ones. Simply enjoy being enthralled.

CANCER [June 21–July 22] Among the surprises spilled by WikiLeaks some months back was the revelation that U.S. diplomats think Canadians feel "condemned to always play 'Robin' to the U.S. 'Batman.'" If that's true, it shouldn't be. Although Canada might not be able to rival the war-mongering, plutocrat-coddling, environment-despoiling talents of my home country America, it is a more reliable source of reason, compassion, and civility. Are you suffering from a similar disjunction? Do you imagine yourself "Robin" in relationship to some overweening "Batman"? This would be an excellent time to free yourself.

LEO [July 23–August 22] "Enigmatology" means the study of puzzles and how to solve them. I'm invoking it now to highlight the fact that you need to call on some unusual and idiosyncratic and possibly even far-fetched resources as you intensify your efforts to solve the puzzles that are spread out before you. The help you've called on in the past just won't be enough for this new round of gamesmanship. The theories and beliefs and strategies that have brought you this far can't take you to the next stage.

VIRGO [August 23–September 22] This would not be a good time for you to read the book called The Complete Idiot's Guide to Enhancing Self-Esteem. In fact, it will never be the right time to read it. Although it's true that at this juncture in your life story, you can make exceptional progress in boosting your confidence and feeling positive about yourself, you're not an idiot, and you don't need idiot-level assistance. If there were a book called The Impish Guide to Accessing and Expressing Your Idiosyncratic Genius, I'd definitely recommend it. Likewise a book titled The Wild-Eyed Guide to Activating Your Half-Dormant Potential or The Brilliant Life-Lover's Guide to Becoming a Brilliant Life-Lover.

LIBRA [September 23–October 22] "When I was born," said comedian Gracie Allen, "I was so surprised, I didn't talk for a year and a half." I suspect you will experience a metaphorical rebirth that has some of the power of the event she was referring to. And so I won't be shocked if you find it challenging to formulate an articulate response, at least in the short term. In fact, it might take you a while to even register, let alone express, the full impact of the upgrade you will be blessed with.

SCORPIO [October 23–November 21] "During a game of Apocalypse against the Witchhunters," reports Andrew_88 in an online forum, "I authorized my Chaos Lord to throw his vortex grenade at the oncoming Cannoness and her bodyguard. Safe to say, he fluffed it, and the vortex grenade scattered back on top of him. Then he proceeded to take out my allies, the Havocs, Land Raider, and Baneblade, before disappearing, having done no damage to my opponent." I suggest you regard this as a helpful lesson to guide your own actions in the coming days. Do not, under any circumstances, unleash your Chaos Lord or let him throw his vortex grenade at anyone. He could damage your own interests more than those of your adversaries.

SAGITTARIUS [November 22–December 21] According to my analysis of the astrological omens, it's high time for you to receive a flood of presents, compliments, rewards, and blessings. You got a problem with that? I hope not. I hope you are at peace with the fact that you deserve more than your usual share of recognition, appreciation, flirtations, and shortcuts. Please don't let your chronic struggles or your cynical view blind you to the sudden, massive influx of luck. Pretty please open your tough heart and skeptical mind to the bounty that the universe is aching to send your way.

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