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Week of September 1


By Rob Brezsny

ARIES (March 21-April 19): Here's how rock critic Aidin Vaziri described the stage set when hip-hop artist 50 Cent played in San Jose: "an urban wasteland that looked like it was designed by Disney (complete with an overturned police car, graffiti-covered trashcans and the decapitated head of the Statue of Liberty)." I hope you don't take this the wrong way, Aries, but there's a certain resemblance between that environment and yours. The so-called chaos you're surrounded by is either imaginary or artificial or both. It may be seductively well-made, and therefore hard to resist, but you can walk away from it any time you choose.

TAURUS (April 20-May 20): You have the potential to be a great wizard in the coming week. Here's how to fulfill that promise: (1) Renounce grandiose fantasies of transforming lead into gold or frogs into soul mates. (2) Think small, be specific, get extremely pragmatic, and don't make up stories based on inconclusive evidence. (3) Take everything that's dreamy and hazy and bring it down to earth. (4) Don't bitch about the limitations; love them and use them to your advantage. (5) Treat idealism as a distraction unless it can be translated into concrete acts that do some good for actual human beings.

GEMINI (May 21-June 20): A respected medical journal reports that one out of four people thinks that "scientists have already found a cure for cancer, but that this cure is being withheld by the health care industry because it makes more money treating the illness." There are a lot of paranoid theories like this going around. Millions believe in the existence of elite puppet masters who manipulate our shared resources to serve their own power and wealth rather than the public good. I'm not smart or crazy enough to evaluate these theories. But I do know that for you right now, Gemini, it's crucial to be extremely skeptical of every authority, expert, and leader. You should express similar discernment toward those who present themselves as hip, high-status, or special. It will be to your advantage to disrespect hierarchies and become a devotee of pure democracy.

CANCER (June 21-July 22): "All I learned in the three colleges I attended," says my friend Davey, "was how to beat the system by using its own rules against it." "All I learned in college," declares author Miravi Bhuna-Giva, "was how to make up sh–." "All I learned in college," asserts late-night TV talk show host Jimmy Kimmel, "was how to drink while standing on my head." All these educational experiences are highly recommended for you in the coming weeks, Cancerian. You're in a phase when you'll have luck and grace if you act like an eager student, whether you're trying to perfect the art of squeezing more perks out of the game of life or mastering goofy tricks that will make more people want to invite you to their parties.