NOW Magazine - - FREEWILL ASTROLOGY - By Rob Brezsny

ARIES Mar 21 | Apr 19 Ac­cord­ing to my as­sess­ment of the as­tro­log­i­cal omens, your duty right now is to be a brave ob­server and fair- minded in­ter­me­di­ary and hon­est sto­ry­teller. Your peo­ple need you to help them do the right thing. They re­quire your in­flu­ence in order to make good de­ci­sions. So if you en­counter lazy com­mu­ni­ca­tion, dis­pel it with your clear and con­cise speech. If you find that foggy think­ing has started to in­fect im­por­tant dis­cus­sions, in­ject your clear and con­cise in­sights.

TAURUS Apr 20 | May 20 A chemist named Mar­cel­lus Gil­more Ed­son got a patent on peanut but­ter in 1894. A busi­nessper­son named Ge­orge Bayle started sell­ing peanut but­ter as a snack in 1894. In 1901, a ge­nius named Ju­lia David Chandler pub­lished the first recipe for a peanut but­ter and jelly sand­wich. In 1922, an­other pi­o­neer came up with a new process for pro­duc­ing peanut but­ter that made it taste better and last longer. In 1928, two trail­blaz­ers in­vented loaves of sliced bread, set­ting the stage for the as­cen­sion of the peanut but­ter and jelly sand­wich to its full glory. Ac­cord­ing to my anal­y­sis, Taurus, you’re part­way through your own process of gen­er­at­ing a very prac­ti­cal marvel. I sus­pect you’re now at a phase equiv­a­lent to Ju­lia David Chandler’s orig­i­nal recipe. On­ward! Keep go­ing!

GEMINI May 21 | Jun 20 One of the most pop­u­lar brands of candy in North Amer­ica is Milk Duds. They’re ir­reg­u­larly shaped globs of cho­co­late caramel. When they were first in­vented in 1926, the man­u­fac­turer’s plan was to make them per­fect little spheres. But with the rather prim­i­tive tech­nol­ogy avail­able at that time, this proved im­pos­si­ble. The fin­ished prod­ucts were blobs, not globes. They tasted good, though. Work­ers jok­ingly sug­gested that the new con­fec­tion’s name in­clude “dud,” a word mean­ing fail­ure or flop. Hav­ing sold well now for more than 90 years, Milk Duds have proved that suc­cess doesn’t nec­es­sar­ily re­quire per­fec­tion. Who knows? Maybe their dud- ness has been an es­sen­tial part of their charm. I sus­pect there’s a metaphor­i­cal ver­sion of Milk Duds in your future, Gemini.

CAN­CER Jun 21 | Jul 22 In my vi­sion of your life in the com­ing weeks, you’re hunt­ing for the in­ti­mate power that you lost a while back. After many twists and tri­als, you find it al­most by ac­ci­dent in a seem­ingly unim­por­tant lo­ca­tion, a place you have paid little at­ten­tion to for a long time. When you rec­og­nize it, and re­al­ize you can re­claim it, your de­meanor trans­forms. Your eyes brighten, your skin glows, your body lan­guage gal­va­nizes. A vivid hope arises in your imag­i­na­tion: how to make that once- lost, now- re­dis­cov­ered power come alive again and be of use to you in the present time.

LEO Jul 23 | Aug 22 The et­y­mo­log­i­cal dic­tio­nary says that the English slang word “cool” meant “calmly au­da­cious” as far back as 1825. The term “groovy” was first used by jazz mu­si­cians in the 1930s to sig­nify “per­form­ing well with­out grand­stand­ing.” “Hip,” which was orig­i­nally “hep,” was also pop­u­lar­ized by the jazz com­mu­nity. It meant, “in­formed, aware, up- to- date.” I’m bring­ing th­ese words to your at­ten­tion be­cause I re­gard them as your words of power in the com­ing weeks. You can be and should be as hip, cool and groovy as you have been in a long time.

VIRGO Aug 23 | Sep 22 I hope you will seek out in­flu­ences that give you grin­ning power over your wor­ries. I hope you’ll be dar­ing enough to risk a break­through in ser­vice to your most de­mand­ing dream. I hope you will make an ef­fort to un­der­stand your­self as your best teacher might un­der­stand you. I hope you will find out how to sum­mon more faith in your­self – a faith not rooted in lazy wishes but in a rig­or­ous self- as­sess­ment. Now here’s my pre­dic­tion: You will ful­fill at least one of my hopes, and prob­a­bly more.

LIBRA Sep 23 | Oct 22 The Pol­ish pi­anist Ig­nacy Jan Paderewski once per­formed for Eng­land’s Queen Vic­to­ria. Since she pos­sessed that by­gone era’s equiv­a­lent of a back­stage pass, she was able to con­verse with him after the show. “You’re a ge­nius,” she told him, hav­ing been im­pressed with his artistry. “Per­haps, Your Majesty,” Paderewski said. “But be­fore that I was a drudge.” He meant that he had laboured long and hard be­fore reach­ing the mas­tery the Queen at­trib­uted to him. Ac­cord­ing to my anal­y­sis of the as­tro­log­i­cal omens, you Li­bras are cur­rently in an ex­tended drudge phase of your own. That’s a good thing! Take max­i­mum ad­van­tage of this op­por­tu­nity to slowly and surely im­prove your skills.

SCORPIO Oct 23 | Nov 21 The an­cient Greek poet Si­monides was among the first of his pro­fes­sion to charge a fee for his ser­vices. He made money by com­pos­ing verses on de­mand. On one oc­ca­sion, he was asked to write a stir­ring trib­ute to the vic­tor of a mule race. He de­clined, declar­ing that his sen­si­bil­i­ties were too fine to cre­ate art for such a vul­gar ac­tiv­ity. In re­sponse, his po­ten­tial pa­tron dra­mat­i­cally boosted the pro­posed price. Soon there­after, Si­monides pro­duced a rous­ing ode that in­cluded the phrase “wind- swift steeds.” I of­fer the poet as a role model for you in the com­ing weeks, Scorpio. Be more flex­i­ble than usual about what you’ll do to get the re­ward you’d like.

SAGITTARIUS Nov 22 | Dec 21 Here’s the op­er­a­tive metaphor for you th­ese days: You’re like a painter who has had a vi­sion of an in­ter­est­ing work of art you could cre­ate – but who lacks some of the paint colours you would re­quire to ac­tu­al­ize this art. You may also need new types of brushes you haven’t used be­fore. So here’s how I sug­gest you pro­ceed: Be ag­gres­sive in track­ing down the miss­ing in­gre­di­ents or tools that will en­able you to ac­com­plish your as- yet imag­i­nary mas­ter­piece.

CAPRICORN Dec 22 | Jan 19 Use­ful rev­e­la­tions and provoca­tive epipha­nies are headed your way. But they prob­a­bly won’t ar­rive sheathed in sweet­ness and light, ac­com­pa­nied by tin­kling swells of ce­les­tial mu­sic. It’s more likely they’ll come barg­ing in with a clat­ter, bring­ing bristly mar­vels and rough hope. In a re­lated mat­ter, at least one break­through is in your im­mi­nent future. But this bless­ing is more likely to re­sem­ble a wres­tle in the mud than a dance on a moun­tain­top. None of this should be a prob­lem, how­ever. I sug­gest you en­joy the rugged but in­ter­est­ing fun.

AQUARIUS Jan 20 | Feb 18 One of the sad­dest as­pects of our lives as hu­mans is the dis­par­ity be­tween love and romance. Real love is hard work. It’s un­selfish, un­wa­ver­ing and rooted in gen­er­ous em­pa­thy. Romance, on the other hand, tends to be capri­cious and in­con­stant, of­ten de­pen­dent on the fluc­tu­a­tions of mood and chem­istry. Is there any­thing you could do about this crazy- mak­ing prob­lem, Aquarius? Like could you maybe ar­range for your ro­man­tic ex­pe­ri­ences to be more thor­oughly suf­fused with the pri­mal power of un­con­di­tional love? I think this is a re­al­is­tic re­quest, es­pe­cially in the com­ing weeks. You will have ex­cep­tional po­ten­tial to bring more com­pas­sion and spir­i­tual af­fec­tion into your prac­tice of in­ti­macy.

PISCES Feb 19 | Mar 20 In ac­cor­dance with as­tro­log­i­cal omens, I in­vite you to dream up new rit­u­als. The tra­di­tional ob­ser­vances and cer­e­monies be­queathed to you by your fam­ily and cul­ture may sat­isfy your need for com­fort and nos­tal­gia, but not your need for re­newal and rein­ven­tion. Imag­ine cel­e­brat­ing home­made rites of pas­sage de­signed not for who you once were but for the new per­son you’ve be­come. You may be de­lighted to dis­cover how much power they pro­vide you to shape your life’s long- term cy­cles. Ready to con­jure up a new rit­ual right now? Take a piece of pa­per and write down two fears that in­hibit your drive to cre­ate a to­tally in­ter­est­ing kind of suc­cess for your­self. Then burn that pa­per and those fears in the kitchen sink while chant­ing “I am a swash­buck­ling in­cin­er­a­tor of fears!”

Home­work: Do some­thing that you will re­mem­ber with pride and pas­sion un­til the end of your days. Tes­tify at Freewil­las­trol­ogy. com.

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