Free Will Astrology: October 5-11, 2011

ARIES [March 21–April 19] "Do unto others as they wish," advised Marcel Duchamp, "but with imagination." I recommend that approach to you, Aries. You're in a phase of your astrological cycle when you can create good fortune for yourself by tuning into the needs and cravings of others and then satisfying those needs and cravings in your own inimitable and unpredictable ways. Don't just give the people you care about the mirror image of what they ask for; give them a funhouse mirror image that reflects your playful tinkering.

TAURUS [April 20–May 20] Winner of the American Book Award in 1963, William Stafford wrote thousands of poems. The raw materials for his often-beautiful creations were the fragments and debris of his daily rhythm. "I have woven a parachute out of everything broken," he said in describing his life's work. You are now in a phase when you could achieve a comparable feat, Taurus. You have the power to turn dross into sweetness, refuse into treasure, loss into gain.

GEMINI [May 21–June 20] Is there something you've always wanted to create but have not gotten around to creating? Now would be an excellent time to finally get that project off the ground. Is there any role you have fantasized about taking on but have never actually sought out? Now would be a perfect moment to initiate an attempt. Is there any big, mysterious deal you've thought about connecting with but never have? Any profound question you've longed to pose but didn't? You know what to do.

CANCER [June 21–July 22] The experiences you're flirting with seem to be revivals of long-forgotten themes. You're trying to recover and reinvigorate stuff that was abandoned or neglected way back when. You're dipping into the past to salvage defunct resources, hoping to find new applications for them. To illustrate the spirit of what you're doing, I've resurrected some obsolete words I found in an 18th-century dictionary. Try sprinkling them into your conversations; make them come alive again. "Euneirophrenia" means "peace of mind after a sweet dream." The definition of "neanimorphic" is "looking younger than one's true age." "Gloze" is when you speak soothing or flattering words in order to persuade.

LEO [July 23–August 22] An old Egyptian saying declares that "the difference between a truth and a lie weighs no more than a feather." I suspect that your upcoming experiences will vividly demonstrate the accuracy of that statement. There will be a fine line between delusional nonsense and helpful wisdom, between colorful but misleading BS and articulate, provocative analysis, between interesting but irrelevant fantasies and cogent, evidence-based prognostications. Which side will you be on, Leo? To increase your chances of getting it right, be a stickler for telling yourself the heart-strong truth.

VIRGO [August 23–September 22] What's the most practical method of acquiring wealth? One out of every five Americans believes that it's by playing the lottery. Although it is true that you now have a slightly elevated chance of guessing the winning numbers in games of chance, I don't recommend that you spend any time seeking greater financial security this way. A much better use of your advantage would be to reorganize your approach to making, spending, saving, and investing money.

LIBRA [September 23–October 22] The Jet Propulsion Laboratory landed two robotic vehicles on Mars in 2004. They were expected to explore the planet and send back information for 90 days. But the rover named Spirit kept working for more than six years, and its companion, Opportunity, is still operational. The astrological omens suggest that any carefully prepared project you launch in the coming weeks could achieve that kind of staying power. Don't scrimp on the love and intelligence you put into your labor of love.

SCORPIO [October 23–November 21] "I don't want to play the part of the mythical phoenix again," my Scorpio friend Kelly has been moaning as she prepares for her latest trial by fire. "I've burned myself to the ground and risen reborn out of the ashes two times this year already. Why can't someone else take a turn for a change?" Although I empathized, I thought it was my duty to tell her what I consider to be the truth: More than any other sign of the zodiac, you Scorpios have supreme skills in the art of metaphorical self-immolation and regeneration. You're better able to endure the ordeal, too. Ready for another go?

SAGITTARIUS [November 22–December 21] When she was seven years old, my daughter Zoe created a cartoon panel with colored pens. It showed an orange-haired girl bending down to tend to three orange flowers. High overhead was an orange five-pointed star. The girl was saying, "I think it would be fun being a star," while the star mused, "I think it would be great to be a girl." I urge you to create your own version of this cartoon. Put a picture of yourself where the girl was in Zoe's. Getting your imagination to work in this way will put you in the right frame of mind to take advantage of the opportunities life brings. Here's your mantra: "As above, so below."

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