Be the Hero of Your Own Story

You Have the Power to Describe What's True for You

The ability to tell your own story, in words or images, is already a victory, already a revolt.

—Rebecca Solnit

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EVEN A WOUNDED WORLD

Even a wounded world is feeding us. Even a wounded world holds us, giving us moments of wonder and joy. I choose joy over despair. Not because I have my head in the sand, but because joy is what the Earth gives me daily and I must return the gift.

—Robin Wall Kimmerer

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A REMINDER

Let me remind you who you really are: You're an immortal freedom fighter who longs to liberate all sentient creatures from their suffering. You're a fun-loving messiah who devoutly wants to help all of your fellow messiahs claim the ecstatic awareness that is their birthright.

You have the power to remember these things. You're a vortex of fluidic light that has temporarily taken on the form of a human being, suffering amnesia about your true origins. And why did you do that? Because it was the best way to forge the identity that would make you such an elemental force in our 14-billion-year campaign to bring heaven all the way down to earth.

I'm not speaking metaphorically here. You are a mutant deity in disguise—not a Buddha or a Christ exactly, but of the same lineage and conjured from the same fire. You have been around since the beginning of time and will be here after the end. Every day and in every way, you're getting better at playing the preposterously amusing master game we all dreamed up together before the Big Bang bloomed.

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EXCITING QUALITIES IN ANOTHER PERSON

Hypothesis: The exciting qualities that attract you to someone in the first place may make you half-crazy if you go on to develop a long-term relationship.

That doesn't mean you should avoid seeking connections with intriguing people who captivate your imagination. It does suggest you should have no illusions about what you are getting yourself into.

It also implies you should cultivate a sense of humor about how the things that rouse our most intense love and passion often bring us the greatest tests and trials.

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THE INFLUENCE OF SATURN

Many astrologers regard the planet Saturn as an agent of limitation—a baleful influence that invariably nags you to rein yourself in and take on more responsibility.

But for the ancient Romans, Saturn's influence was anything but baleful. As the vine-growing god who ruled over a golden age, he was synonymous with abundance. The holiday in his honor, Saturnalia, was a seven-day feast of freedom and pleasure. Businesses and schools were closed, masters served their slaves, grudges were forgotten, and parties raged nonstop.

So whose version of Saturn is more correct? Maybe both. Can you think of ways in which limitation has led to abundance and vice versa?

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YOUR ADDICTION

Your addiction is obstructing you from your destiny, and yet it's also your ally.

What?! How can both be true?

On the downside, your addiction diverts your energy from a deeper desire that it superficially resembles. For instance, if you're an alcoholic, your urge to get loaded may be an inferior substitute for and a poor imitation of your buried longing to commune with spirit.

On the upside, your addiction is your ally, because it dares you to get strong and smart enough to wrestle free of its grip; it pushes you to summon the uncanny willpower necessary to defeat the darkness within you that saps your ability to follow the path with heart.

(P.S. Don't tell me you have no addictions. Each of us is addicted to some sensation, feeling, thought, or action, if not to an actual substance.)

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REVOLUTIONIZING THE ART OF REBELLION

1. Experiment with uppity, mischievous optimism.

2. Invoke insurrectionary levels of wildly interesting generosity.

3. Indulge in an insolent refusal to be chronically fearful.

4. Pursue a cheeky ambition to be as wide-awake as a dissident trickster messiah.

5. Bring reckless levels of creative intelligence to all expressions of love.

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FRRREEEEEEE !!!!

I have made it possible for subscribers to my newsletter to pay a subscription fee to me for my newsletter, BUT ONLY IF THEY WANT TO AND CAN AFFORD TO!

I have offered my astrology newsletter free of charge for the past 20 years, and I will continue to do so for the next 20 years at least.

If, however, you are sufficiently prosperous and feel comfortable about donating money to me, I welcome it. Please know, though: I am TOTALLY FINE if you don't donate.

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THANKS FOR YOUR HARD WORK!

Dear Co-Conspirators: Congratulations on having such ambidextrous brains and hearts. Due to your ever-growing ability to blend supple rationality with robust intuition, you're not falling prey to the inane strains of insanity that are going around. Instead you're achieving glorious victory after glorious victory over the fearful fantasies that pass for normalcy.

Best of all, you're increasing your mastery of the art of paradox; more and more you're attuned to the amusing fact that when the mythic shifts hit the fan, the apparent opposites turn inside-out and trade places. The rot prepares the way for the splendor. The chaos becomes the source of the rejuvenation. The end of the world mutates into the beginning of the world.

Please accept the thunderous applause of my one hand clapping. The people who take everything personally and seriously may not recognize your ingenious work, but we connoisseurs of the liberated imagination do.

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LOVE AND SKEPTICISM

The Chinese poet Yuan Mei (1716–1798) was heavily influenced by Buddhism but was also skeptical toward it. He was eager to learn from the very tradition he criticized. The book of his selected poems is entitled I Don't Bow to Buddhas. Yuan Mei is one of my role models.

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MY DAILY HOROSCOPES

Did you know that I write daily horoscopes? They're available as text messages sent to your cell or smart phone.

They're shorter than the weekly 'scopes, but on the other hand they're more frequent — every day of the week.

My weekly horoscopes are free, but the dailies cost about 67 cents a day if you sign up for a subscription.

If you think you might enjoy getting regular bursts of inspiration from me to illuminate your adventures, check them out.

Go to https://RealAstrology.com. Register or log in. On the new page, click on "Subscribe / Renew" under "Daily Text Message Horoscopes" in the right-hand column.

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MORE PRONOIA RESOURCES:

Donated Cars and Cash Flood in to South Carolina Mechanic Who Fixes Them And Gives Them Away to Those in Need. https://tinyurl.com/aadcsx6d

The Gay ‘Green Book’ Is Going Online. A digitization project will ensure that a series of 20th century guides for LGBTQ travelers aren’t lost to history. https://tinyurl.com/asmr3tx9

The Sounds of Healing. When musician Yoko Sen ended up in the hospital, she was overwhelmed by the cacophony of noise. What if all those beeps and alarms could sound like music instead? https://tinyurl.com/84nhcw6j

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For a lot more pronoiac resources and ideas, read my book Pronoia Is the Antidote for Paranoia: How the Whole World is Conspiring to Shower You with Blessings

Available at Bookshop.org: https://tinyurl.com/548hp8y8

Available at Powells: https://bit.ly/PowellsPronoia

Available at Barnes & Noble: https://tinyurl.com/PronoiaBN

Available at Amazon: https://bit.ly/Pronoia

A free preview of the book is available here: https://tinyurl.com/PronoiaPreview

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Please tell me your own nominations for PRONOIA RESOURCES: Truthrooster@gmail.com.

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FREE WILL ASTROLOGY

Week beginning August 26

Copyright 2021 by Rob Brezsny

VIRGO (Aug. 23-Sept. 22): "I sing like the nightingale whose melody is crowded in the too narrow passage of her throat," wrote author Virginia Woolf. That was an insulting curse for her to fling at herself. I disapprove of such behavior—especially for you in the coming weeks. If you hope to be in alignment with cosmic rhythms, don't you dare say nasty things about yourself, even in the privacy of your own thoughts. In fact, please focus on the exact opposite: flinging praise and appreciation and compliments at yourself.

LIBRA (Sept. 23-Oct. 22): The blogger at www-wlw.tumblr.com says the following are the top tender actions. 1. Fastening clothes or jewelry for your companion. 2. Letting them rest their head on your shoulder. 3. Idly playing with their hands. 4. Brushing a leaf out of their hair. 5. Locking pinkies. 6. Rubbing their back when you embrace. 7. Both of you wearing an item that belongs to the other. Dear Libra, I hope you will employ these tender actions with greater frequency than usual in the coming weeks, Libra. Why? In my astrological opinion, it's a ripe time to boost your Affection Quotient with the allies you care for the most.

SCORPIO (Oct. 23-Nov. 21): Naturalist Henry David Thoreau wrote in his journal, "I feel slightly complimented when nature condescends to make use of me without my knowledge—as when I help scatter her seeds in my walk—or carry burs and cockles on my clothes from field to field. I feel as though I had done something for the commonweal." I mention this, Scorpio, because the coming weeks will be an excellent time for you to carry out good deeds and helpful transformations in nature's behalf. Your ability to collaborate benevolently with plants and animals and elemental forces will be at a peak. So will your knack for creating interesting connections between yourself and all wild things.

SAGITTARIUS (Nov. 22-Dec. 21): You may have never heard of Sagittarian artist Baya Mahieddine (1931–1998). At age 16, she experienced a splash of acclaim with a show in Paris. Famous artists Pablo Picasso, Henry Matisse, and George Braques came. They drew inspiration from Mahieddine's innovative use of color, elements from her Algerian heritage, and her dream-like images. Picasso even invited her to work with him, exulting in the fresh perspectives she ignited. But her art never received the full credit it warranted. In accordance with astrological omens, this horoscope is a small way of providing her with the recognition and appreciation she deserves. It also authorizes you to go out and get the recognition and appreciation you deserve but have not yet fully received.

CAPRICORN (Dec. 22-Jan. 19): "Who knows what is unfolding on the other side of each hour?" asked Capricorn poet Juan Ramón Jiménez (translated by Capricorn poet Robert Bly). "How many times the sunrise was there, behind a mountain. How many times the brilliant cloud piling up far off was already a golden body full of thunder!" Your assignment, Capricorn, is to imagine what is unfolding just beyond your perception and understanding. But here's the twist: You must steer your mind away from inclinations to indulge in fear. You must imagine that the events in the works are beautiful, interesting, or redemptive. If you're not willing to do that, skip the exercise altogether.

AQUARIUS (Jan. 20-Feb. 18): "Better than any argument is to rise at dawn and pick dew-wet red berries in a cup," wrote author Wendell Berry. I mostly agree with that sentiment, although I will also put in a good word for certain kinds of arguments. There are moments when it's crucial for your psychological and spiritual health that you initiate a conversation about delicate issues that might lead to a dispute. However, I don't think this is one of those times, Aquarius. In my astrological opinion, picking dew-wet red berries is far more sensible than any argument. For further inspiration, read this testimony from actor Natasha Lyonne: "I definitely would rather take a nap than get angry."

PISCES (Feb. 19-March 20): For painter Vincent van Gogh, love wasn't primarily a sentimental feeling. Nor was it an unfocused generalized wish for health and happiness in those he cared for. Rather, he wrote, "You must love with a high, serious, intimate sympathy, with a will, with intelligence." His love was alert, acute, active, and energized. It was animated with a determination to be resourceful and ingenious in nurturing the beloved. For van Gogh, love was always in action, forever moving toward ever-fresh engagement. In service to intimacy, he said, "you must always seek to know more thoroughly, better, and more." I hope you'll make these meditations a top priority during the next seven weeks.

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YOU ALWAYS HAVE MORE HELP THAN YOU IMAGINE

Both people whom you know and people you don't know could come to your assistance and offer their support if you meet two conditions: 1. you believe you deserve their assistance and support; 2. you seek out and ask for their assistance and support.

There's a higher part of your brain that will also provide you with insight and guidance if you turn to it in humility and seek its input.

Whether or not you actually believe in spiritual beings, they, too, are ready to offer help, support, blessings and resources. If you don't believe in their existence, I invite you to pretend you do for a while and see what happens. If you do believe in them, formulate clear requests for what you'd like them to offer you.

I may also be able to provide you with compassionate guidance, both through the written horoscopes I provide in this newsletter and the Expanded Audio Horoscopes I offer online and via telephone.

To listen to your Expanded Audio Horoscope online, go to https://RealAstrology.com

Register and/or log in through the main page.

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The cost is $6 per sign online. (Discounts are available for bulk purchases.)

You can also listen over the phone by calling 1-877-873-4888. The cost is $1.99 per minute. Each forecast is 4-5 minutes long.

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Image is by Steven Paul Judd, a Kiowa and Choctaw artist and filmmaker from Oklahoma

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ARIES (March 21-April 19): Aries mythologist Joseph Campbell advised us to love our fate. He said we should tell ourselves, "Whatever my fate is, this is what I need." Even if an event seems inconvenient or disruptive, we treat it as an opportunity, as an interesting challenge. "If you bring love to that moment, not discouragement," Campbell said, "you will find the strength." Campbell concludes that any detour or disarray you can learn from "is an improvement in your character, your stature, and your life. What a privilege!" Few signs of the zodiac are inclined to enthusiastically adopt such an approach, but you Aries folks are most likely to do so. Now is an especially favorable time to use it.

TAURUS (April 20-May 20): The brilliant Taurus dancer and choreographer Martha Graham spoke of "a vitality, a life force, a quickening that is translated through you into action," adding that "there is only one of you in all time." She added, "It is not your business to determine how good it is, nor how it compares with other expressions. It is your business to keep it yours clearly and directly, to keep the channel open." But even if you do this very well, Graham said, you will nevertheless always feel "a divine dissatisfaction, a blessed unrest" that will fuel you. This is the perfect message for you Tauruses to embrace in the coming weeks.

GEMINI (May 21-June 20): There's growing scientific evidence that we make ourselves stupid by complaining too much—or even by listening to other people complain a lot. Excessive negative thoughts drain energy from our hippocampus, a part of our brain that's essential to problem-solving. This doesn't mean, of course, that we should avoid dealing with difficult issues. But it does suggest we should be discerning about how many disturbing and depressing ideas we entertain. According to my reading of the omens, all this will be especially useful advice for you in the coming weeks.

CANCER (June 21-July 22): Your brain contains one hundred billion nerve cells. Each cell has the potential to be linked with tens of thousands of others. And they are always busy. Typically, your grey matter makes a million new connections every second. But I suspect your number of connections will increase even beyond that in the coming weeks. Your most complex organ will be working with greater intensity than usual. Will that be a bad thing or a good thing? It depends on whether you formulate an intention to channel your intelligence into wise analysis about important matters—and not waste it in careless fussing about trivial details.

LEO (July 23-Aug. 22): "You should have a sticky soul," counsels author Elizabeth Berg. "The act of continually taking things in should be as much a part of you as your hair color." I especially endorse that attitude for you during the next four weeks, Leo. Your task is to make yourself extra magnetic for all the perceptions, experiences, ideas, connections, and resources you need most. By September 23, I suspect you will have gained an infusion of extra ballast and gravitas.

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Homework. This is what I do to earn a living. Let me know what you do. Newsletter@FreeWillAstrology.com

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P.S. I totally respect your privacy. I'll never sell or give away your address to anyone.

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Submissions sent to Rob Brezsny's Astrology Newsletter or in response to "homework assignments" may be published in a variety of formats at Rob Brezsny's discretion, including but not limited to newsletters, books, the Free Will Astrology column, and Free Will Astrology website. We reserve the right to edit submissions for length, style, and content.

Requests for anonymity will be honored. We are not responsible for unsolicited submission of any creative material.

Contents of the Free Will Astrology Newsletter are Copyright 2021 Rob Brezsny

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