Don’t cut the umbilical cord right away Gemini, says Rob Brezsny. Illustration by Matt Grant.
GEMINI (May 21-June 20): A couple I know planned to have their second baby delivered at home with a midwife’s help. The father is a physician who assisted with childbirths during his residency, so he and his partner felt confident about conducting their rite of passage outside of the hospital. But once the mom’s water broke and labor began, everything happened faster than expected. The dad gave the midwife an urgent phone call, but the kid was already crowning. “Don’t cut the umbilical cord right away,” the midwife advised. “It will minimize the shock of transition if the baby can get the hang of breathing while still being nurtured as she has for the last nine months.” That’s exactly what they did. And I hope you will do the metaphorical equivalent, Gemini. Keep getting fed the old way for a while as you learn how to be fed in the new way.
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CANCER (June 21-July 22): I swerve to avoid running over spiders that cross my path when I’m riding my bicycle. While at home, I prefer to shepherd flies out through an open door or window rather than swat them. I’m still not sufficiently enlightened that I’ve stopped trying to squash mosquitoes that dive-bomb me while I’m falling asleep, however. I’m working on it, but may need a few more years of meditation before I bring my reverence for all insect life up to the highest level. The way I see it, my fellow Cancerian, you’d benefit from working on a similar project in the coming weeks: improving your relationships with influences you don’t have a natural affinity for.
LEO (July 23-Aug. 22): “Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world,” wrote anthropologist Margaret Meade. “Indeed, it’s the only thing that ever has.” An excellent example of that occurred during America’s Revolutionary War against England from 1775 to 1783. Of all the men in the 13 colonies who could have fought for freedom, only 16 percent did. I hope that gives you encouragement as you seek to fix a glitch in the status quo. You and your band of allies have more power than you know.
VIRGO (Aug. 23-Sept. 22): Up to one-tenth of the population is left-handed. Yet for centuries, even as late as the 1950s, there were social stigmas against left-handers — similar in some ways to the perverse prejudice that has been directed toward homosexuals. So strong was the taboo that many parents tried to convert their naturally left-handed children into righties. Thankfully, this absurd form of repression is now defunct. (Five of the last seven American presidents have been left-handed.) But it’s a good reminder that there are countless other ways in which our culture still attempts to coax us or force us into not being who we really are. But here’s the good news: It’s an excellent time for you Virgos to reject the pressure to be someone else and get back to where you once belonged. Reunite with the person you were destined to be!
LIBRA (Sept. 23-Oct. 22): The Tower of Terror is a thrill ride at Disney World. Riders are yanked up and down as they travel along a 199-foot pillar. A Florida woman named Denise Mooty believes this form of amusement is essential to her health. She says the extreme G-forces she’s exposed to on the ride help dissipate the fibrous adhesions in her belly. I recommend a similar kind of therapy for you, Libra. Not to break up fibrous adhesions, since you probably don’t have any, but rather to jostle your mental blocks, repetitive fantasies, and obsessive habits. They might just break into pieces and dissipate if you shake them in the right way.
SCORPIO (Oct. 23-Nov. 21): It’s your choice, Scorpio. You could be a creative dynamo who changes the course of local history — or you could be a plain old boring sex maniac. What’ll it be? We here at the Free Will Astrology Libido Management Center encourage you to at least partially sublimate your unruly mojo into beautiful works of art, innovative business solutions, and brilliant strokes of collaboration. You don’t have to stop boinking altogether; just make it the second most important thing you rather than your raison d’etre.
SAGITTARIUS (Nov. 22-Dec. 21): The planets are conspiring to unleash energies that will touch you in ways you didn’t realize you needed to be touched. Any minute now you may begin to feel a pleasurable burning sensation in your soft underbelly, or a prickly wake-up call in your willpower, or a ticklish electricity running through your funny bone. What does it all mean? Maybe nothing. Or maybe it means so much that you can’t possibly analyze its meaning. What a valuable gift that would be! When is the last time you felt free of the need to have to understand everything?
CAPRICORN (Dec. 22-Jan. 19): A long-time Capricorn reader named Allison wrote me an apologetic email. She said that she has always loved my horoscopes, and still loves them, but for the foreseeable future she’s got to stop reading them. “Please don’t take it as an insult, because it’s not,” she wrote. “I just need to be less subject to outside influences for a while. Maybe that will help me get better at paying attention to my own intuition.” I understood exactly what she means. According to my analysis, this is one time when you may have to shield yourself from the noise around you — even the good and interesting noise — in order to hear your own inner voice better.
AQUARIUS (Jan. 20-Feb. 18): Rolling Stone magazine has said that sixties folk singer Tom Rush (born February 8) was a major force in launching the era of the singer-songwriter. He’s been lying low for a while, though. Recently he came out with his first new studio album in 35 years. I’m guessing that, like him, quite a lot of other Aquarians will also be climaxing new creations as 2009 unfolds — perhaps even works that are long overdue or that have been extraordinarily slow in the making. And what happens in the next few weeks will be crucial in that process.
PISCES (Feb. 19-March 20): “All the problems we face in the United States today,” said comedian and presidential candidate Pat Paulsen, “can be traced to an unenlightened immigration policy on the part of the American Indian.” With that as your inspiration, Pisces, I urge you to take inventory of your own “immigration policy.” It’s an excellent time to do so, astrologically speaking. Here are some questions to guide you. What influences do you allow to pour into your sphere? Are they beneficial for your long-term mental health? What people do you invite to share your resources? Do they bring out the best in you? Do you have smart boundaries that keep out the bad stuff and welcome in the good?
ARIES (March 21-April 19): The fleas infesting dogs’ skin have greater leaping power than the fleas on cats. Why do you think that is, Aries? Maybe you should use your waxing brainpower to get to the bottom of this great mystery. Just kidding! While it is true that in the coming weeks you will have unusual skill in deciphering enigmas and clarifying ambiguities, I think you should direct that skill to really important matters that will improve your life for months to come — not to trivial questions like fleas’ jumping abilities.
TAURUS (April 20-May 20): Studies show that when most people take a shower, they lather the upper part of their bodies first and make their way down. I recommend that you take the opposite approach this week, Taurus. In fact, I think a similar strategy would be wise in just about everything you do. Start at the bottom and work your way up. Establish yourself at the ground level and then take care of the higher stuff. Pay respect to the roots and then tend to the branches.
Homework: What other name would you give yourself if you could take a vacation from your present name? Why? FreeWillAstrology.com.