Free Will Astrology: February 1-7, 2012
ARIES [March 21–April 19] Sad but true: A lot of people seem to be perpetually in a state of wanting what they don't have and not wanting what they actually do have. I'm begging you not to be like that in the coming weeks, Aries. Please? I'll tell you why: More than I've seen in a long time, you will have everything going for you if you want precisely what you do have—and are not full of longing for what's unavailable.
TAURUS [April 20–May 20] Of all the signs of the zodiac, Tauruses are the least likely to be arrogant. Sadly, in a related development, they're also among the most likely to have low self-esteem. But your tribe now has an excellent opportunity to address the latter problem. Current cosmic rhythms are inviting you rather loudly and dramatically to boost your confidence, even at the risk of you careening into the forbidden realm of arrogance. That's why I recommend Taurus musician Trent Reznor as your role model. Here's what he confessed when asked about whether he frequents music social networks: "I don't care what my friends are listening to. Because I'm cooler than they are."
GEMINI [May 21–June 20] "If Mark Twain had had Twitter," says humorist Andy Borowitz, "he would have been amazing at it. But he probably wouldn't have gotten around to writing Huckleberry Finn." I think you're facing a comparable choice, Gemini. You can either get a lot of little things done that will serve your short-term aims, or you can at least partially withdraw from the day-to-day give-and-take so as to devote yourself with more focus to a long-range goal.
CANCER [June 21–July 22] You now have a special talent for helping your allies tap into their dormant potentials and latent energy. If you choose to use it, you will also have a knack for snapping lost sheep and fallen angels out of their wasteful trances. There's a third kind of magic you have in abundance right now, Cancerian, and that's the ability to coax concealed truths out of their hiding places. Personally, I'm hopeful that you will make lavish use of these gifts. I should mention, however, that some people might resist you. The transformations you could conceivably set in motion with your superpowers could seem alarming to them. I suggest that you hang out as much as possible with change-lovers.
LEO [July 23–August 22] "Publishing a volume of poetry is like dropping a rose petal down the Grand Canyon and waiting for the echo," said author Don Marquis, speaking from experience. Something you're considering, Leo, might seem to fit that description, too. It's a project or action or gift that you'd feel good about offering, but you also wonder whether it will generate the same buzz as that rose petal floating down into the Grand Canyon. Here's what I think: To the degree that you shed your attachment to making an impact, you will make the exact impact that matters most.
VIRGO [August 23–September 22] Comedian Louis CK told a story about his young daughter. She had a fever, and he gave her some Tylenol that was bubble-gum flavored. "Ewwww!" she complained. Louis was exasperated. "You can't say 'Ewwww,'" he told her. What he meant was that as a white kid in America, she's among the most privileged characters in the world—certainly far luckier than all the poor children who have no medicine at all, let alone medicine that tastes like candy. I'm going to present a similar argument to you, Virgo. In the large scheme of things, your suffering right now is small. Try to keep your attention on your blessings rather than your discomfort.
LIBRA [September 23–October 22] I stumbled upon an engineering textbook for undergraduates. There was a section on how to do technical writing, as opposed to the literary kind. It quoted a poem by Edgar Allan Poe: "Helen, thy beauty is to me/Like those Nicean barks of yore/That gently, o'er a perfumed sea,/The weary way-worn wanderer bore/To his own native shore." Then the book gave advice to the student: "To express these ideas in technical writing, we would simply say, 'He thinks Helen is beautiful.'" Don't take shortcuts like that, Libra. For the sake of your emotional health and spiritual integrity, you can't see or treat the world anything like what a technical writer would.
SCORPIO [October 23–November 21] Are you ready to start playing in earnest with that riddle wrapped in a mystery inside an enigma? Are you looking forward to the rough-and-tumble fun that will ensue after you leap into the middle of that sucker and start trying to decipher its impossibly interesting meaning? I hope you are primed and eager, Scorpio. I hope you can't wait to try to answer the question that seems to have no answer. Be brave and adventurous, my friend—and be intent on having a blast.
SAGITTARIUS [November 22–December 21] Lessons could come to you from unforeseen sources and directions during the next few weeks, Sagittarius. They will also come in expected forms from all the familiar influences, so the sum total of your learning could be pretty spectacular. To take maximum advantage of the opportunity, assume that everyone and everything might have useful teachings for you—even people you usually ignore and situations that have bored you in the past. Act like an eager student who's hungry for knowledge and curious to fill in the gaps in your education.
CAPRICORN [December 22–January 19] "The consuming desire of most human beings is deliberately to plant their whole life in the hands of some other person," said British writer Quentin Crisp. If you harbor even a small tendency in that direction, Capricorn, I hope that in the coming days you will make a concentrated effort to talk yourself out of it. In my astrological opinion, this is a critical moment in the long-term evolution of your healthy self-sufficiency. For both your own sake and the sake of the people you love, you must find a way to shrink your urge to make them responsible for your well-being.
AQUARIUS [January 20–February 18] If you go to California's Yosemite National Park this month, you might get the chance to witness a reddish gold waterfall. Here's how: At sunset, gaze up at the sheer east face of the rock formation known as El Capitan. There you will see what seems to be a vertical river of fire, also known as Horsetail Fall. I nominate this marvel to be your inspirational symbol for the coming weeks. According to my reading of the astrological omens, you will have the power to blend fire and water in novel ways.
PISCES [February 19–March 20] After singer Amy Winehouse died, actor Russell Brand asked the public and media to scale back their derisive opinions about her struggle with intoxicants. Addiction isn't a romantic affectation or glamorous self-indulgence that people are too lazy to overcome, he said. It's a disease. Would you mock a schizophrenic for his "stupid" propensity for hearing voices? I'm of the opinion that all of us have at least one addiction, though it might not be as disabling as Winehouse's weakness for liquor and narcotics. What's yours, Pisces? Porn? Sugar? Bad relationships? The coming weeks would be a good time to seek help in healing it.
Get the This Week's Top Stories Newsletter
Every week we collect the latest news, music and arts stories — along with film and food reviews and the best things to do this week — so that you’ll never miss Village Voice's biggest stories.