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Free will astrology

Week of November 13

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ARIES (March 21-April 19): "You can't know fire unless you play with it," says Mark Finney, a math whiz who develops computer models for fighting forest fires. I offer that as a motto for you in the coming week, Aries. I'm not saying you should purposely ignite a conflagration for the sake of impulsive experimentation. I'm not saying you should kick smoldering embers around like soccer balls or light a cigarette while you're pumping gasoline or buy yourself a flame-thrower. What I am saying is that it will be in your interest to learn more about how to play safely with intriguing, useful fires. (Finney's quote comes from the July 2008 issue of National Geographic. )

TAURUS (April 20-May 20): The time for keeping the doors closed is passing. But it is not yet the right moment to fling them wide open. According to my reading of the omens, your best strategy is to keep doors ajar — open just a crack, letting some air in and allowing a hint of your light to trickle out. This will discourage unfocused wanderers from barging in, while at the same time it encourages worthy candidates with a healthy curiosity to sneak peeks inside.

GEMINI (May 21-June 20): "There is a rose in Spanish Harlem," sings Ben E. King in his old pop ballad. "It is a special one/ Its never seen the sun/ It only comes out when the moon is on the run." King is fantasizing with longing about an alluring woman from a hardscrabble neighborhood. The rose is "growing in the street/ right up through the concrete" — a delicate beauty blooming amidst tough conditions. Your assignment, Gemini, is to cultivate a connection with your equivalent of that rose.

CANCER (June 21-July 22): Every second of your life, your bone marrow produces 100 trillion molecules of hemoglobin, the stuff that carries oxygen from your lungs to the rest of you. Meanwhile, every minute, your immune system begets 10 million lymphocytes, which are key players in your body's defenses. These are just two examples of the endless marvels you produce, Cancerian. You are a creator of the first order. You're a supreme maker and a generative genius. Remember that in the coming days. It will help you be confident and purposeful as you birth minor miracles and intimate wonders.

LEO (July 23-Aug. 22): For decades the U.S. government has handed out far more welfare benefits to big corporations than to poor people. Companies like IBM, General Electric, Boeing, and others rake in over 100 billion dollars of subsidies each year. In other words, socialism has been a prominent feature of the so-called capitalist system for a long time. Recently, Karl Marx's influence has made even deeper inroads into the American way, with the government becoming part-owner of many banks in order to keep them solvent. Will any of this fantastic largesse be extended to regular citizens, like maybe in the form of nationalized health care? I can't answer that. But I do know this, Leo: In the coming months, you will get help from powers that you regard as above and beyond you.

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