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Free Will Astrology

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ARIES (March 21-April 19): "There's always one moment in childhood when the door opens and lets the future in," wrote novelist Graham Greene. I'll add to that: There are at least three moments in adulthood when a new door opens and invites the rest of the future in. Judging by the astrological omens, I'm guessing that one such breakthrough lies ahead for you in 2011. What can you do to expedite and encourage fate's summons? Here's one possibility: surrender to the naked truth of what you love.

TAURUS (April 20-May 20): If oil companies were given permission to sink their drilling rigs into the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, the petroleum they produced would ultimately lower gasoline prices by four cents per gallon. To my mind, that's not a good trade-off. Let this scenario serve as a cautionary metaphor for you in 2011, Taurus. Don't share your pristine wilderness or soulful beauty with exploitative types who offer iffy rewards. Instead, hold out for those who appreciate you profoundly and whose own gifts help you to thrive.

GEMINI (May 21-June 20): Freud said that among all human endeavors, there were three "impossible professions" that inevitably yielded unsatisfying results. They were child-rearing, the governing of nations, and psychoanalysis. My own experiences don't entirely confirm this. My parents raised me pretty well and I've given my daughter a decent upbringing. Of the nine psychotherapists I've consulted in my life, two were excellent healers and none were damaging. But even those relatively winning projects were sometimes fraught with unsolvable riddles, chronic frustrations, and maddening uncertainties. I bring this up, Gemini, because I think 2011 will be a time when you will generate far more gratification and success than usual in your own versions of "impossible professions." Unsolvable riddles, chronic frustrations, and maddening uncertainties won't be completely absent, but they could very well be at an all-time low.

CANCER (June 21-July 22): "We have to believe in free will. We have no choice." So said author Isaac Bashevis Singer. I encourage you to adopt that puckish thought as your motto in 2011, my fellow Cancerian. According to my reading of the astrological omens, this will be our year to supercharge our willpower and intensify our ability to carry out our plans - but always with good humor and a highly tuned sense of irony. In fact, one of the best ways to deepen our command over our own unconscious impulses and the caprices of fate will be to take ourselves -- and everything else, too -- less seriously.

LEO (July 23-Aug. 22): The coming year will be a time to think big - maybe even bigger than you've dared to think in over a decade. That doesn't mean you should be rash, reckless, or unrealistic. On the contrary. Your expansive dreams should be carefully wrought and anchored in a detailed understanding of how things actually work. As an example of what not to do, learn from Snoop Dog. The rapper wanted to rent all 62 square miles of the small European nation of Liechtenstein so he could film his music video there. Liechtenstein authorities turned him down, but only because his team didn't ask far enough in advance. Had he been better organized, the whole country could have been his.

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