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COLUMN

Free Will Astrology

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VIRGO (Aug. 23-Sept. 22) “Never to get lost is not to live,” writes Rebecca Solnit in her book A Field Guide to Getting Lost. In fact, she says that not knowing how to get lost is unhealthy. These are useful ideas to consider right now. It will probably do you good to get at least semi-lost. As you wander around without a map or compass, I bet you will stumble upon important teachings. At the same time, I hope you will put some thought into how you’re going to get lost. Don’t just leave it to chance. Make sure there’s a method in your madness.

LIBRA (Sept. 23-Oct. 22) In the English language, “low man on the totem pole” is an idiom that refers to a person who has the worst job or the least status. He or she is considered to be at the low end of the hierarchy. But it’s an incorrect metaphor. The creators of the original totem poles were indigenous Native American tribes of the Pacific Northwest, and for them the figure at the bottom of the pole was the most important one. I foresee the possibility of a similar situation arising in your sphere, Libra. Be alert for a misapprehension that needs to be righted. It may be the case that what’s last should actually be first. Something that has been beneath or behind “more important” matters should perhaps get higher priority.

SCORPIO (Oct. 23-Nov. 21) In his book Karmic Traces, Eliot Weinberger describes the life story of naked mole rats. They’re animals that never leave their underground tunnels. Normally you Scorpios have nothing in common with them. But in the coming days, I’m hoping there will be one resemblance. According to Weinberger, the naked mole rats “change direction by somersaulting.” Metaphorically speaking, I think this would be an excellent strategy for you. There’s no need to mope cautiously as you alter your course. No need to be lackadaisical and fitful and full of doubts. Just spring into action with a cheery bounce, and move on with a renewed sense of purpose.

SAGITTARIUS (Nov. 22-Dec. 21) The famous philosopher John Searle unleashed a witty dig about the famous philosopher Jacques Derrida, saying he is “the sort of philosopher who gives bullshit a bad name.” One of your fun assignments in the coming week, Sagittarius, is to do the opposite of what Derrida’s work does. In other words, give bullshit a good name. How? Well, you could engage in creative verbal expressions that boost morale and propagate delight and lubricate worthwhile connections. Make up noble fictions that are more accurate and useful that the literal truth. Spread uplifting gossip that heals and invigorates.

CAPRICORN (Dec. 22-Jan. 19) “The ideal piano player is the one who wants to be the piano,” says a character in Thomas Bernhard’s novel The Loser. He continues: “I say to myself every day when I wake up, I want to be the Steinway, I want to be the Steinway itself.” Your assignment is to apply this attitude to your own personal situation. In other words, merge with the tool you want to master. Immerse yourself in the skill you’re working to perfect – disappear into it. In your imagination, become completely united with the thing or person or experience you desire.

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