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COLUMN

Free Will Astrology

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ARIES (March 21-April 19) Maybe you're not literally in exile. You haven't been forced to abandon your home and you haven't been driven from your power spot against your will. But you may nevertheless be feeling banished or displaced. It could be due to one of the conditions that storyteller Michael Meade names: "We may experience exile as a lack of recognition, a period of transition, an identity crisis, a place of stuckness or else having a gift and no place to give it." Do any of those describe your current predicament? The good news, Meade says, is that exile can shock you awake to the truth about where you belong. It can rouse your irrepressible motivation to get back to your rightful place.

TAURUS (April 20-May 20) Do you have a recurring nightmare that has plagued you? If so, I suspect it will recur again soon. Only this time, you will beat it. You will trick or escape or defeat the monster that's chasing you. Or else you will outrun the molten lava or disperse the tornado or fly up off the ground until the earth stops shaking. Congratulations on this epic shift. Forever after you will have more power over the scary thing that has had so much power over you.

GEMINI (May 21-June 20) The following request for advice appeared on Reddit.com: "My identical twin is stuck in an alternate dimension and she can only communicate with me by appearing as my own reflection in mirrors and windows. How can I tell her I don't like what she's done to her hair?" This question is a variant of a type of dilemma that many of you are experiencing right now, so I'll respond to it here. I'm happy to say that you will soon get an unprecedented chance to commune directly with your alter egos. Your evil twin will be more available than usual to engage in meaningful dialogue. So will your doppelganger, your shadow, your mirror self and your stuntperson.

CANCER (June 21-July 22) Usually I advise Cancerians to draw up precise borders and maintain clear boundaries. As a Crab myself, I know how important it is for our well-being that we neither leak our life force all over everything nor allow others to leak their life force all over us. We thrive on making definitive choices and strong commitments. We get into trouble when we're wishy-washy about what we want. OK. Having said all that fatherly stuff, I now want to grant you a partial and temporary license to get a little wild and fuzzy. Don't overdo it, of course, but explore the smart fun you can have by breaking some of your own rules and transgressing some of the usual limits.

LEO (July 23-Aug. 22) In the course of formulating his theory of evolution, Charles Darwin read many books. He developed a rather ruthless approach to getting what he needed out of them. If there was a particular part of a book that he didn't find useful, he simply tore it out, cast it aside and kept the rest. I recommend this as a general strategy for you in the coming week. In every situation you're in, figure out what's most valuable to you and home in on that. For now, forget the irrelevant and extraneous stuff.

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