Free Will Astrology | Jan. 17-23 

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ARIES
(March 21-April 19)
I urge you to spend 2008 turning all of your pretty good but half-developed notions into a few brilliant, fully formed ideas. While you’re at it, melt down your hundreds of wishy-washy wishes and recast them into three driving desires. This is the Year of Pinpoint Aim, Aries, also known as the Year of Lasering Your Focus and the Year of Seeing with Fierce Clarity. Psyche yourself up for a major campaign to cut the crap so the essence can shine.

TAURUS (April 20-May 20)
My sensitive poet friend Carson taught criminals in a penitentiary how to write haiku poems. Novelist Margaret Atwood gave a class on the absurdist writing of Franz Kafka to engineers in British Columbia. And in 2008, I’ll ask you to share your gifts with people you’ve always assumed wouldn’t be receptive to you, let alone be able to benefit from your unique talents. Get ready to push past your boundaries in the coming months, Taurus. Extend your sphere of influence and appeal to a larger audience.

GEMINI (May 21-June 20)
As I approached a pickup truck from behind while out driving my car, I saw an unlikely bumper sticker. It said “Surf Colorado.” But Colorado is a landlocked place, I thought to myself, more than a thousand miles from the ocean. At the next red light, I got closer to the truck and was able to read the fine print: “In your river kayak, you don’t need an ocean to catch a wave.” What a perfect message to convey to my Gemini readers, I mused, and resolved to write it into this horoscope. In fact, you are currently in a phase when you don’t need an ocean to surf. Nor, for that matter, do you need a plane in order to fly, a soul mate to achieve romantic rapture, or money to be rich. Your imaginative powers are peaking at the same time as your resourcefulness.

CANCER (June 21-July 22)
“Dear Rob: Help! When I give love, I feel powerful but when I accept love, I feel weak. So even though I dearly crave love, when someone tries to give it to me, I run away. I’m afraid of the vulnerability that comes from being the recipient of the gift; I’m afraid of being in debt to the person who’s offering it; I’m afraid of the loss of control that comes from not providing myself with everything I need; and I’m afraid that if I accept love, I’ll get addicted to it, and then how will I cope if it goes away? What can I do? —Cowardly Crab.” Dear Crab: In the coming weeks, the universe will conspire to help you find new ways to think about these riddles. You’ll have tremendous access to the precise kind of courage you need.

LEO (July 23-Aug. 22)
I want to call your attention to a scene in the independent film Autism: The Musical. Neal is a 12-year-old autistic boy who has never spoken a complete sentence, not even to his beloved mother Elaine. He can barely form words. If you ask him to say “bar,” he’ll say “rahb.” Elaine brings him to a therapist who guides autistic kids in using a machine that produces vocal sounds corresponding to words the kids type on a keyboard. For the first time, Neal’s mom hears a message from her son: “Mom, I’m going to put you on the spot. You need to do more listening.” I expect you will soon experience a metaphorically comparable event, Leo: A source you love will communicate with you in a novel way. Be receptive. Listen hard.

VIRGO (Aug. 23-Sept. 22)
In 1954, the writer Albert Camus said, “A person’s life purpose is nothing more than to rediscover, through the detours of art or love or passionate work, those one or two images in the presence of which his heart first opened.” In the first month of 2008, a humble astrology columnist, yours truly, used Camus’ words to direct Virgos towards one of their primary tasks in the year ahead.

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