Rob Brezsny's Astrology Newsletter
May 13, 2015
My book PRONOIA IS THE ANTIDOTE FOR PARANOIA
is available at Amazon: bit.ly/Pronoia
or Powells: bit.ly/PronoiaPowells
The e-book is available at bit.ly/eePronoia
Below are excerpts.
Are you willing to push hard to get better, become smarter, grow your devotion to the truth, fuel your commitment to beauty, refine your emotional intelligence, hone your dreams, negotiate with your shadow, cure your ignorance, shed your pettiness, heighten your drive to look for the best in people, and soften your heart . . .
. . . even as you always accept yourself for exactly who you are with all of your so-called imperfections, never demeaning the present by comparing it to an idealized past or future?
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Readers of my horoscope column "Free Will Astrology" are sometimes surprised when I say I only believe in astrology about 80 percent. "You're a quack?!" they cry. Not at all, I explain. I've been a passionate student of the ancient art for years. About the time my over-educated young brain was on the verge of desertification, crazy wisdom showed up in the guise of astrology, moistening my soul just in time to save it.
"But what about the other 20 percent?" they press on. "Are you saying your horoscopes are only partially true?"
I assure them that my doubt proves my love. By cultivating a tender, cheerful skepticism, I inoculate myself against the virus of fanaticism. This ensures that astrology will be a supple tool in my hands, an adaptable art form, and not a rigid, explain-it-all dogma that over-literalizes and distorts the mysteries it seeks to illuminate.
Read the rest of this essay: bit.ly/167qJ3j
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Ken Burns says one of the things that alarms him most at this moment in culture is that so many people are eager to express their opinions and so few are interested in telling stories.
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How can we influence people to stop their extermination of nature? How can we motivate people to stop committing genocide against animal species? [Choose Method A or Method B or a blend of both.]
1. Nag people with scientific data that shocks them into acknowledging how much harm human activity is inflicting.
2. Shame them about the sin of bequeathing their descendants a damaged, impoverished planet.
3. Badger them to dissolve the unethical greed that leads them to consume so many of the earth's resources and produce too much waste.
4. Criticize them for being too stubborn and ignorant to change their destructive habits.
5. Goad them with financial incentives to do the right thing even if they don't want to do the right thing.
6. Express smart love for the interconnected web of life.
7. Celebrate the fact that there are other forms of consciousness and intelligence besides just the human kind.
8. Embody the hypothesis that spending time in wild places enhances one's mental hygiene and physical health.
9. Value the feminine as much as the masculine.
10. Cultivate the art of empathy, and demonstrate how to make it work in everything you do.
11. Show what it means to think with your heart and feel with your head.
12. Stay in close touch with the Mysterium, the other real world that is the root of the material world.
13. Vow to bring the I-Thou dynamic to bear on all your relationships.
14. Be as curious about intimacy as you are about power.
MORE PRONOIA RESOURCES:
Stephen Colbert shocks South Carolina schools by funding every single teacher-requested grant.
The owner of a credit card processing business in Seattle is raising his employees' minimum wage to $70,000 by cutting his own salary. "The market rate for me as a C.E.O. compared to a regular person is ridiculous, it's absurd," he said.
Bank of America will cut lending to coal extraction companies and coal divisions of broader mining companies.
(Note: I endorse these because I like them. They are not advertisements, and I get no kickbacks.)
Please tell me your own personal nominations for PRONOIA RESOURCES.
FREE WILL ASTROLOGY
Week beginning May 14
Copyright 2015 by Rob Brezsny
TAURUS (April 20-May 20):
My astrological colleagues discourage me from talking to you Bulls about financial matters. "Most Tauruses know ten times more about the mystery of money than you will ever know," said one. "Their excellent instincts trump any tips you could offer." Another astrologer concurred, noting, "The financial advice you give Tauruses will at best be redundant and at worst simplistic." A third colleague summed it up: "Offering Tauruses guidance about money is like counseling Scorpios about sex." So although I'm shy about providing recommendations, I will say this: The next five weeks will be a favorable time to set in motion the plans to GET RICHER QUICKER!
GEMINI (May 21-June 20):
"Endings to be useful must be inconclusive," wrote science fiction novelist Samuel R. Delany. I endorse that theory for your use in the coming weeks. Interweave it with this advice from playwright Sam Shepard: "The temptation towards resolution, towards wrapping up the package, seems to me a terrible trap. Why not be more honest with the moment? The most authentic endings are the ones which are already revolving towards another beginning." In other words, Gemini, don't be attached to neat finales and splashy climaxes. Consider the possibility that you can simply slip free of the complicated past and head toward the future without much fanfare.
CANCER (June 21-July 22):
In mythic terms, you should be headed for the winner's circle, which is inside the pleasure dome. The parade in your honor should follow the award ceremony, and let's hope you will be on the lead float wearing a gold crown and holding a real magic wand while being sung to by a choir of people you love and who love you. If for any reason you are not experiencing some version of these metaphors, I urge you to find out why. Or better yet, get busy on planning a homecoming or graduation party or award ceremony for yourself. From an astrological perspective, you have a mandate to be recognized and appreciated for the gifts you offer the world.
LEO (July 23-Aug. 22):
British Field Marshal Arthur Wellesley was a brilliant military commander. Renowned for his ability to beat larger armies, he also had great skill at minimizing loss of life among his own troops. His most famous triumph took place in 1815, when he led the forces that defeated Napoleon Bonaparte at Waterloo. In the aftermath, the French tyrant lost his power and went into exile. What was the secret of Wellesley's success? "Bonaparte's plans were made in wire," he said. "Mine were made in string." In other words, Wellesley's strategy was more flexible and adaptable. As circumstances changed, it could be rearranged with greater ease. That's the approach I recommend for you in the coming days.
VIRGO (Aug. 23-Sept. 22):
You may not be strong enough to take a shot at a daunting challenge that's five levels beyond your previous best. But I think you are at least ready to try a tricky challenge that's one level higher than where you have been operating. And that, in my opinion, is a more practical use of your courage. I think it would be a waste of your energy to get wrapped up in grandiose fantasies about impossible perfections. As long as you don't overreach, you can accomplish small miracles.
LIBRA (Sept. 23-Oct. 22):
I suspect you are about to experience some prime contenders for The Most Unusual Adventures of 2015. Are you thoroughly prepared? Of course not. There's no way you can be totally ready to adapt to unpredictable wrinkles and change your mind at a moment's notice. But that's exactly what will make these experiments so fun. That's why they will be effective in building up your resilience and willpower. For best results, apply your nighttime thinking to daytime activities, and vice versa. Spend minimal time on responsibilities that don't teach you noble truths about your fellow madmen and madwomen. Now here's my big question: How can you tap into the extra power you will need during your rite of passage?
LOVE YOUR LIFE!
How's your fight for freedom going? Are you making progress in liberating yourself from your unconscious obsessions, bad habits, and conditioned responses? Are you turning out to be the hero of your own life?
For assistance and inspiration, tune in to my EXPANDED AUDIO HOROSCOPES.
These forecasts are different in tone and format from the written horoscopes you read here in the newsletter. They're longer and more leisurely in tone. They tend to bring out more of the patient counselor in me, and have a bit less of the poet.
To listen to your Expanded Audio Horoscope online, go to RealAstrology.com.
Register and/or log in through the main page.
You can also listen over the phone by calling 1-877-873-4888.
The cost is $6 per sign on the Web (discounts available for bulk purchases), or $1.99 per minute by phone. Each forecast is 4-5 minutes long.
The Expanded Audio Horoscopes work on most smart phones and tablets.
"Your Expanded Audio Horoscopes seem to have the effect of activating my inner teacher. Thanks!" - Eleanor A., Toronto
"Your expanded audio horoscopes are the next best thing to actually having you here next to me to remind me who I really am." - Alyssa R., Des Moines, Iowa
SCORPIO (Oct. 23-Nov. 21):
Many modern astronomers are allergic to astrology, but from my perspective there is no inherent conflict between the two fields. Four of history's greatest astronomers were practicing astrologers, after all: Johannes Kepler, Galileo Galilei, Tycho Brahe, and Pierre Gassendi. One of my friends in college, a Scorpio woman named Martha Maiden, is a first-rate astrologer who got a degree in astronomy and became a top scientist at NASA. In the spirit of finding reconciliation between apparent opposites, I'm happy to say that you are now a virtual virtuoso in your ability to reconcile both apparent opposites and actual opposites. I invite you to use this aptitude with flair and daring.
SAGITTARIUS (Nov. 22-Dec. 21):
Sagittarian Matt Stutzman competes in the sport of archery. He's the world's record holder for longest accurate shot, having hit a target 230 yards away. What makes his accomplishment so extraordinary is the fact that he was born without any arms. He holds each arrow in his mouth and grasps the bow with his right foot and the help of a chest harness. In the spirit of this armless archer, and in accordance with your current astrological omens, I invite you to initiate an attempt to triumph over one of your so-called disadvantages.
CAPRICORN (Dec. 22-Jan. 19):
Long before Lou Reed recorded the song "Walk on the Wild Side," Nelson Algren wrote a novel titled A Walk on the Wild Side. It depicts the luxuriant depravity of New Orleans' French Quarter in the 1930s. One of Algren's most enduring bits of spiritual advice goes as follows: "Never, ever, no matter what else you do in your whole life, never sleep with anyone whose troubles are worse than your own." What do you think of that, Capricorn? Even if you don't regard it as a universal rule that you should unfailingly obey, I suggest you observe it in the coming weeks. For the sake of your mental hygiene, be extra discerning about what influences you absorb -- not just in bed, but everywhere.
AQUARIUS (Jan. 20-Feb. 18):
The cosmos has authorized you to be hungrier than usual. You may also feel free to respond to your enhanced hunger with an extra aggressive quest to be fed. Therefore: Be voracious! Risk being avid, ardent, and even agog. Fill yourself up with pudding, pleasure, praise, peace, perks, and privileges. Anything else you'd like to engorge? If some unenlightened person questions your right to claim the biggest piece and the sweetest taste and the best fuel, inform them that your astrologer says you have ultimate permission.
PISCES (Feb. 19-March 20):
Is there an interesting ally whose path rarely crosses yours? Do you draw inspiration from a like-minded dynamo who is not fully available? Has fate kept you and a friend from getting as close as you would wish? According to my reading of the astrological omens, relationships like these could become more substantial in the coming weeks. The dream of a more robust connection could ripen into an opportunity to actually collaborate. So be alert for the openings, and be prepared to do what's necessary to go deeper.
ARIES (March 21-April 19):
The danger of resisting a temptation too strenuously is that the temptation might depart. I suggest that you prevent that from happening. Without throwing yourself at the mercy of the temptation, see if you can coax it to stick around for a while longer. Why? In my view, it's playing a useful role in your life. It's motivating you to change some things that really do need to be changed. On the other hand, I'm not yet sure that it should become anything more than a temptation. It might serve you best that way, not as an object of your satisfied desire.
Imagine that everything important you know is condensed into a single symbol or image. What is it? FreeWillAstrology.com.
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Contents of the Free Will Astrology Newsletter are Copyright 2015 Rob Brezsny