REAL ASTROLOGY For an Unreal World

Aries (March 21-April 19): My expert $450-an-hour advice is that you shouldn't spend a penny for any expert's advice this week. Most of the valuable information you need to gather will come to you via the gossip mill, unreliable sources, chance encounters, and your spies in the underground. The wisdom of the folk will guide you far better than the propaganda of the elite. As I said, don't pay in cash for any of this inside dope; free lunches and sparkling flattery should be your only legal tender.

Taurus (April 20-May 20): In his book So Sue Me, Joe Kohut reports on the strange case of Gerald Mayo. The dude became so convinced Satan was the cause of his problems that he sued the Prince of Darkness in federal court for violating his civil rights. Consider following Mayo's example, Taurus. Your upcoming troubles will be pretty trivial compared to his, but you'll have a devilish tendency to exaggerate them as you mistakenly blame them all on the people you love. Scapegoat a more deserving target, please, whether it's Satan or the Vast Right-Wing Conspiracy or the kid who beat you up when you were 6 years old.

Gemini (May 21-June 20): I hope you're not planning on reprising your tortured romantic hero act while you wait for your love boat to come in. Behavior like that would suggest you're blitzed on some media-induced fantasy. The fact is, Gemini, there is one hell of a symbiotic, synergistic synchronicity awaiting you out there beyond the horizon on the wine dark sea. But you'll never connect with it unless you paddle your canoe out to meet it.

Cancer (June 21-July 22): To prepare yourself psychologically for the cognitive dissonance that's headed your way, I suggest you perform the following experiment. Gather three tubs. Fill the first with the hottest water you can stand to touch. In the second, place icy cold water. The third tub should contain water at room temperature. Now, thrust your left hand into the steamy stuff and your right hand into the frigid. Keep them there for a few minutes, then remove them and put them both in the third tub. Your left hand will feel too cool and your right too warm, even though they're in the same water. Remember this odd disjunction well, Cancerian. It'll help you make shrewd analyses of the tricky situations you'll face in the coming days.

Leo (July 23-Aug. 22): In the coming weeks, I believe you'll catch the Goddess' tender attention whenever you treat your body like a holy temple. It'll be prime time for you to seek the kind of sublime pleasure that exalts your spirit. You'll also receive surprisingly wise intuitions from gut-level reactions, heart-melting vulnerability, and other physical sensations. To get in the mood to capitalize on this sacredly sensual time, enjoy this bit from Eduardo Galeano:

The church says this body is a sin
Science says this body is a machine
Business says this body is a product
The body says "I am a fiesta"

Virgo (Aug. 23-Sept. 22): I'm not saying the following scenario will happen, just that it should happen. First you take a hike through a stirring natural site. When you return, you shower and meditate. Then a singing masseuse croons lullabies while massaging your body with virgin olive oil. An organic gourmet meal comes next, followed by an aromatherapy session and a consultation with a feng shui expert. Next you drink sweet medicinal tea that boosts your immune system as a Jungian hairstylist grooms and shapes your persona. Finally, a psychic reads your past and future, and three good friends arrive with a special gift and blessing.

Libra (Sept. 23-Oct. 22): I hesitate to compare you to a nimble-fingered, sensitive-eared thief, but there's no better choice of metaphor: The task you have ahead of you this week resembles picking a lock in the dark. Of course the treasure that's sealed away from you is actually yours, so it won't exactly be like stealing. Still, you won't be able to reclaim it with a forthright approach. You'll have to be daring and delicate at the same time.

Scorpio (Oct. 23-Nov. 21): In Tibetan Buddhism's "Four Dignities of the Warrior's Path," courage and ferocity are absent. In fact, the qualities regarded as essential have nothing in common with the training regimens of the Marines or any of the Western world's other macho do-gooders. The first dignity is meekness, referring to a relaxed confidence. Perkiness, or unabashed joy, is the second dignity. The third is outrageousness, an experimental approach to life that's free of both hope and fear, while the fourth dignity is inscrutability, with its implications of spontaneity and unpredictability. This is the warrior's program I recommend for you between now and the new year, Scorpio.

Sagittarius (Nov. 22-Dec. 21): The 17th-century surgeon Wilhelm Hilden had an interesting theory about healing. He developed a medicinal salve that he applied not to the wound itself but rather to the weapon that inflicted it. The fact is that this approach has great potential if used for psychic wounds. Jesus understood this when he articulated the most revolutionary strategy ever formulated: "Love your enemy." Not just because it's the right thing to do; but because more than any other technique, it has the power to cure you of whatever your enemy has done to you.

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