Free Will Astrology, Week of April 6 

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ARIES (March 21-April 19): Uitwaaien is a Dutch word that means to go out for a stroll in windy weather simply because it's exhilarating. I don't know any language that has parallel terms for running in the rain for the dizzy joy of it, or dancing through a meadow in the dark because it's such nonsensical fun, or singing at full volume while riding alone in an elevator in the mad-happy quest to purge your tension. But in the coming weeks, you don't need to describe or explain experiences like this; you just need to do them. Experiment with giving your instinctive need for exuberance lots of room to play.

TAURUS (April 20-May 20): Your nasty, nagging little demon isn't nasty or nagging any more. It's not doing what demons are supposed to do. It's confused, haggard, and ineffective. I almost feel sorry for the thing. It is barely even keeping you awake at night, and its ability to motivate you through fear is at an all-time low. Here's what I suggest: Now, when the demon's strength is waning and its hold on you is weak, you should break up with it for good. Perform an ultimate, non-reversible exorcism. Buy it a one-way bus ticket to the wasteland and say goodbye forever.

GEMINI (May 21-June 20): When he was in his fifties, French painter Claude Monet finally achieved financial success. He used his new riches to buy a house and land, then hired gardeners to help him make a pond full of water lilies. For the first time in his life, he began to paint water lilies. During the next 30 years, they were his obsession and his specialty. He made them a central feature of 250 canvases, which now serve as one of his signature contributions to art history. "I planted my water lilies for pleasure," he said. "I cultivated them without thinking of painting them. And then suddenly, I had the revelation of the magic of my pond." I regard the imminent future as a good time for you to do something similar, Gemini: Create or find a source of beauty that will stimulate your sense of wonder and fuel your passion to express yourself for a long time.

CANCER (June 21-July 22): "Everything we do in life is based on fear, especially love," said Cancerian comedian Mel Brooks. Although he was joking, he was also quite serious. More often than we like to admit, desperation infects our quest to be cared for. Our decisions about love may be motivated by a dread of loneliness. We worry about whether we are worthy of getting the help and support we need. It's a fundamental human problem, so there's no reason to be ashamed if you have this tendency yourself. Having said that, I'm happy to report that you now have the necessary power to overcome this tendency. You will be able to summon tremendous courage as you revise and refine your relationship with love. It's time to disappear the fear.

LEO (July 23-Aug. 22): Do you ever feel reverence and awe, Leo? Are there times when you spontaneously yearn to engage in acts of worship? Is there anyone or anything that evokes your admiration, humility, and gratitude? The coming weeks will be a good time to seek out experiences like these. According to my reading of the astrological omens, you will get tender jolts of transformational inspiration if you blend yourself with a sublime force that you trust and respect.

VIRGO (Aug. 23-Sept. 22):

A lot has happened since you were . . . uh . . . indisposed. You've missed out on several plot twists. The circle has been broken, repaired, broken again, and partially repaired. Rumors have been flying, allegiances have been shifting, and riddles have been deepening. So are you ready yet to return to the heated action? Have you learned as much as you can from the commotion that provoked your retreat? Don't try to return too early. Make sure you are at least 70 percent healed.

LIBRA (Sept. 23-Oct. 22): Rent, but don't buy yet. That's my $250-per-hour advice. Keep rehearsing, but don't start performing the actual show. OK? Flirt, but don't fall in love. Can you handle that much impulsecontrol? Are you strong enough to explore the deeper mysteries of patience? I swear to you that your burning questions will ultimately be answered if you don't try to force the answers to arrive according to a set timetable. I guarantee that you will make the necessary connections as long as you don't insist that they satisfy every single one of your criteria.

SCORPIO (Oct. 23-Nov. 21): The Guerrilla Girls are a group of prankster activists who use humor to expose sexism and racism in the art world. Every so often they take a "weenie count" at New York's Metropolitan Museum of Art. During their first survey in 1989, they found that five percent of the artists who had work hanging in the galleries were women, while 85 percent of the nudes depicted in the paintings were women. More recently, in 2012, their weenie count revealed that four percent of the artists were female, but 76 percent of the naked people in the paintings were female. The coming week would be a good time for you to take a weenie count in your own sphere, Scorpio. Conditions are more favorable than usual to call attention to gender disparities, and to initiate corrective action.

SAGITTARIUS (Nov. 22-Dec. 21): The English term "engine" refers primarily to a machine that transforms energy into mechanical power. But its roots are in the Old French word engin, which meant skill or wit, and in the Latin word ingenium, defined as "inborn talent." I'd like to borrow the original meanings to devise your horoscope this week. According to my reading of the astrological omens, your "engine" is unusually strong right now, which means that your cultivated skills and innate talents are functioning at peak levels. I suggest you make intensive use of them to produce maximum amounts of energy and gather more of the clout you'd love to wield.

CAPRICORN (Dec. 22-Jan. 19): What I'm about to say is not a hard scientific fact, but it is a rigorous poetic fable. You don't need to go to the mountain, because the mountain is willing and able to come to you. But will it actually come to you? Yes, but only if you meet two conditions. The mountain will pick itself up and move all the way to where you are if you make a lot of room for it and if you are prepared to work with the changes its arrival will bring.

AQUARIUS (Jan. 20-Feb. 18): If you were a four-year-old, cookies might be a valuable treasure to you. Given a choice between a bowl of stir-fried organic vegetables and a plate full of chocolate coconut macaroons, you'd probably choose the macaroons. For that matter, if you were four years old and were asked to decide between getting a pile of macaroons and a free vacation to Bali or an original painting by Matisse or a personal horoscope reading from the world's greatest astrologer, you'd also opt for the cookies. But since you're a grownup, your list of priorities is screwed on straight, right? You would never get distracted by a sugary, transitory treat that would cause you to ignore a more nourishing and long-lasting pleasure. Right?

PISCES (Feb. 19-March 20):

On June 23, 1917, Babe Ruth was the starting pitcher for the Boston Red Sox in a Major League Baseball game against the Washington Senators. After the first batter drew a walk, Ruth got upset with the home plate umpire and punched him in the head. Ejected! Banished! The Babe had to be dragged off the field by the cops. The new pitcher was Ernie Shore. He proceeded to pitch a perfect game, allowing no further Washington player to reach base in all nine innings. In the coming weeks, Pisces, I see you as having the potential to duplicate Ernie Shore's performance in your own sphere. Coming in as a replacement, you will excel. Chosen as a substitute, you will outdo the original.


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