Free Will Astrology

ARIES (March 21-April 19): It's a good time to start preparing for the shocks that will arrive when the Mayan calendar ends on December 21, 2012. Some measures to consider: Learn how to use a gun, live off the grid, and gather edible plants that grow in the wild. APRIL FOOL! Everything I jut said was a histrionic lie. Here's my real message: The period leading up to the winter solstice in 2012, as well as that day itself, will bring no more than the usual rate of breakdowns and breakthroughs that has characterized the last two decades. Of course, that's still more novelty per year than previous generations experienced in a lifetime. But you've become pretty good at adapting, haven't you? This week I suggest you expand your mind even further about the massive transformations we're in the midst of, and think about how you can become even more skilled at constantly changing.

TAURUS (April 20-May 20): When you call to get pizza delivered and the clerk who takes your order asks your name, say you're Paris Hilton. When someone you're meeting is annoyed because you're late, say you couldn't help it because you were smoking crack in the bus station bathroom with your mom and lost track of time. If asked how much education you have, say you have three PhDs in astrobiology, Russian literature, and whale songs. APRIL FOOL! In fact, it's crucial for you to be utterly accurate about yourself. Try to go the entire week without indulging in even one white lie about who you really are.

GEMINI (May 21-June 20): Danni, the renowned "Psychic to the Rich and Famous," predicts that disgraced ex-governor of New York Eliot Spitzer will relocate to Nevada to build an empire of legal high-end brothels that will feature the services of Britney Spears and other starlets on the downside. In that extravagant spirit, I prophesy that during the rest of 2008, you Geminis will have love lives that are as tumultuous and melodramatic and desperately interesting as the romantic escapades of bi-polar Hollywood idols. APRIL FOOL! Your love life may be unusual, uncanny, and highly entertaining during the next eight months, but it won't be painfully funny.

CANCER (June 21-July 22): If you feel possessed by a ghost this week, don't worry about it: You're just channeling the spirit of a person you were in a previous incarnation. So yes, you may feel like a puppet whose strings are being yanked by an invisible entity, but at least you can rest content knowing that entity used to be you. APRIL FOOL! You should not, under any circumstances, allow yourself to be controlled by the old days and the old ways – even if the invasive force comes in the form of someone you used to be.

LEO (July 23-Aug. 22): Author Rick Fields wrote about the time a friend called to recommend a workshop he'd signed up for. "You've got to come," the friend said. "This seminar will completely change your life in one brief weekend." Fields was skeptical. "I don't want to completely change my life this weekend," he replied. "I've got a lot of things to do on Monday." I urge you, Leo, to adopt a similar stance toward any big educational experiences that promise to dislodge you from your routine. APRIL FOOL! I lied. In fact, the astrological omens suggest you'll benefit from responding to invitations that just might thoroughly upgrade your world very quickly.

VIRGO (Aug. 23-Sept. 22): In his science fiction book The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, Douglas Adams says "the meaning of life, the universe, and everything" is the number 42. This week you will prove that's wrong, as you accumulate substantial evidence that the meaning of life, the universe, and everything is actually 59. APRIL FOOL! The meaning of everything can't be reduced to one number, or even to a single theory or ideology. In fact, the meaning of everything is just the opposite: It's glorious mystery. It's gorgeous, mind-teasing ambiguity and fertile, fascinating chaos. Get out there and enjoy the prodigious, kaleidoscopic truth!

LIBRA (Sept. 23-Oct. 22): Ralph Nader for President of the United States! Ron Paul for Vice-President! Oprah for Secretary of State! Dennis Kucinich for Speaker of the House! It's time to overthrow the corrupt powers-that-be and install visionary leaders who will actually work for the good of the people. APRIL FOOL! As much as I'd love to see those public servants ascend to high office, it doesn't make sense to fight for that outcome. For me as well as for you, revolution is not yet in the works. This is a time to pursue hard-earned incremental improvements that will come through a pragmatic willingness to compromise. Don't waste your time on all-or-nothing proposals.

SCORPIO (Oct. 23-Nov. 21): If you're intent on scoring and imbibing an exotic psychedelic drug from Africa, please seek out stuff that has been grown organically. If you're planning to acquire a panther as a house pet, make sure it has been housebroken. And if you find it impossible to repress your urge to stagger into a bar and find a stranger to take home for a night of carnal rapture, be sure to practice safe sex. APRIL FOOL! Everything I just said is a lie. Here's my real message for you: You're susceptible to rationalizing risky behavior, which could lead you to do stupid things. I suggest you either postpone sketchy adventures for a couple of weeks, or else get frank feedback from a clear-headed friend before diving in.

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