Your Mind Is Always Free

How Will You Use Your Freedom?

At every moment, your mind is free—free to reject any thoughts, impulses, and feelings that are barreling into it from who-knows-where. Free to leap to some fresh perspective, inspiring thought, or deep feeling.

It’s true! You can have deep feeling ten seconds from now if you want. All you have to do is turn your mind to a memory that stimulates deep feeling or to a future fantasy that stimulates deep feeling.

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GLIDING, FLOWING, SKIPPING, AND TWIRLING

Maybe you're better than you think you are at gliding, flowing, leaping, skipping, twirling, undulating, reverberating, galloping, and rub-a-dub-dubbing.

It's possible that with just a small attitude adjustment you could be an expert at rumbling, romping, rollicking, cavorting, and zip-a-dap-doodling.

If you really love your body and throw off some of the inhibitions you might have about celebrating your instinctual nature, you may drop to the low end of the scale in performing these activities: shuffling, drooping, mumbling, wallowing, pigeonholing, and pussyfooting.

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PLEASURE ACTIVISM: THE POLITICS OF FEELING GOOD

adrienne maree brown wrote the book Pleasure Activism: The Politics of Feeling Good

Here's a review (which I didn't write, but I'm not sure who did):

How do we make social justice the most pleasurable human experience?

How can we awaken within ourselves desires that make it impossible to settle for anything less than a fulfilling life?

Author and editor adrienne maree brown finds the answer in something she calls “pleasure activism,” a politics of healing and happiness that explodes the dour myth that changing the world is just another form of work.

Drawing on the Black feminist tradition, she challenges us to rethink the ground rules of activism.

More info: https://tinyurl.com/e7v686a3

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HOW CAN WE CONTRIBUTE TO STOPPING ECOCIDE?

M. H. Abrams writes: “Scientists have taken the lead to persuade us, by an appeal to facts, of the threat to the natural world. Is it enough to know the facts? Or will it take a revival and dissemination of the Romantic vision of nature to enable us, in Shelley’s phrase, ‘to imagine that which we know.’

"It's likely that only such a motive power—such an emotive power—will release the energies, the invention, and the will to make the sacrifices needed if we are to salvage this no-longer-quite-so-green earth while it is still fit to live on.”

—M.  H. Abrams, from the essay “This Green Earth: The Vision of Nature in the Romantic Poets”

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How can we influence people to stop their desecration and extermination of nature? How can we motivate people to stop committing genocide against animal species? My suggestions:

1. Show people scientific data that shocks them into acknowledging how much harm human activity is inflicting.

2. Speak to people about the sin of bequeathing their descendants a damaged, impoverished planet.

3. Ask people to dissolve the unethical greed that leads them to consume so many of the earth's resources and produce too much waste.

4. Cultivate and express smart love for the interconnected web of life. Feel it deeply.

5. Celebrate the fact that there are other forms of consciousness and intelligence besides just the human kind. Cultivate loving relationships with them.

6. Embody the hypothesis that spending time in wild places enhances one's mental hygiene and physical health.

7. Value the feminine as much as the masculine.

8. Cultivate the art of empathy, and demonstrate how to make it flourish in everything you do.

9. Show what it means to think with your heart and feel with your head.

10. Stay in close touch with the Mysterium, the other real world that is the root of the material world.

11. Vow to bring the I-Thou dynamic to bear on all your relationships.

12. Be as curious about intimacy as you are about power.

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CONSPIRACY THEORIES

From the perspective of most modern conspiracy theorists, the conspiracies they imagine to be loose in the world have been dreamed up and are perpetrated by coordinated groups of evil people.

The pronoia conspiracy theory, on the other hand, is rooted in a hypothesis at the core of Western Hermetic Magick, which is what I have studied with love for years:

Here's the hypothesis: that life is divine play—an art project/game/ceremony designed by a loving Creator. This Creator, whose consciousness pervades every cubic centimeter of the universe, provides all necessary help and tools for us to be liberated from our suffering and realize our essential oneness with all beings in the process of developing, over millennia of incarnations, a unique and beautiful personal identity.

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WISH LIST

Overturn Citizen's United

You get up in the morning and look at the world in a way that takes nothing for granted. Everything is phenomenal; everything is incredible.

Make large cuts in U.S. defense spending

Fight to attain freedom from our own unconscious obsessions and conditioned responses.

Work to substitute renewable energy sources for fossil fuels.

Meditate on the hypothesis that if there is any such thing as enlightenment, it arises from empathy, sympathy, compassion, tenderness, and a quest to be in intimate connection with and in service to other beings.

End filibuster abuse

Wrestle and negotiate with our own shadows, making preemptive strikes on our personal share of the world's evil, fighting the good fight to keep from spewing our darkness on those around us.

Universal single-payer health care and health insurance

Develop a strategy to avoid being enthralled with the hypnotic lure of painful emotions, past events, and worries about the future

Restore Glass–Steagal

Kill off the reflexes within us that resonate in harmony with consumerism, militarism, misogyny, authoritarianism, and superstition.

Keep abortion, safe, legal, and well-funded

realize that you carry with you at least one piece to someone else's puzzle.

Ensure equal opportunity for all genders and people of all sexual preference.

Put a premium on developing our emotional intelligence and empathy

End gerrymandering

Your wise and affectionate attention is your gift to other people and to animals

Expand the Supreme Court

Decrease your connection with anything that demeans your spirit, shrinks your lust for life, limits your freedom, neglects your soul, compromises your integrity, dishonors your reverence, inhibits your self-expressiveness, or alienates you from what you love.

Institute a wealth tax on the richest 1%

You break all trances that keep you ignorant of your own magic

Campaign finance reform, specifically stopping the "legalized" bribery known as lobbying and stopping the use of "matching funds" from US taxpayer money dollar for dollar for all monies contributed to the two major parties.

You cultivate your profound receptivity to subtle miracles, beguiling ephemera, marvelous breakthroughs

Ensure that all US citizens have automatic access to voting registration and the ability to vote in the manner of their choosing

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FUNDAMENTALIST MATERIALISM

Graham Hancock says: What if consciousness is fundamental? Too much of modern science is based on the philosophical position that matter is the fundamental basis of "reality" and consciousness is secondary.

Later this month a group of brilliant speakers will challenge the unproven assumptions underlying scientific materialism in an online summit. Link in comments below.

More about the Consciousness Unbound online summit: https://tinyurl.com/2uu3kfaa

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The superstition of materialism is the dominant ideology of a majority of people in the world. It's the specious doctrine that physical matter is the only reality and that nothing can be said to exist unless it's perceivable by a human being's five senses or detected by technologies that humans have created.

Materialism paradoxically preaches the value of being agnostic about all phenomena it does not recognize as real, even as it obsessively evades questions about its own fundamentalist assumptions.

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Militant atheists make the claim that religion has always been a primary cause of war. If humans weren't under the sway of "the God delusion," they fume, armed conflicts would be infrequent.

But military historian Eric Bergerud, author of four books about various wars, says that's absurd. He notes that while there have been a few religious wars, "most wars in history have been driven by the lust for power and loot."

In other words, the materialist delusion is far more lethal than the God delusion. People who believe there's nothing of value beyond what the five senses can perceive are often the most dangerous of all.

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REDEMPTION STORY

My weekly astrology column is called "Free Will Astrology," but for many years it was "Real Astrology." Here's the story of where "Real Astrology" came from.

Around the same time I started writing horoscopes decades ago, I co-founded the band Tao Chemical in Santa Cruz, CA. We were beloved by many people—but also hated. The punks hated us for being New Wave, and the New Wavers hated us for being punk.

And both punks and New Wavers hated us for being hippies. Their demand was essentially, "Be one pure genre, not a melange of different genres."

We were feminists and advocates for LGBTQIA people. Since a lot of the punks were macho homophobes back then, they detested this aspect of our message.

We embodied the punk values of sarcasm and satire and anarchy, but also expressed joy, optimism, and uplift. The fact that we were uncategorizable enraged the punks who thought artists should choose a niche and stick to it. How ironic that they were imitating the corporate marketing mavens they allegedly loathed.

There wasn't an official Cancel Culture back then, but we experienced full-on Cancel Culture. One of Tao Chemical's members even got beat up by punks who despised the band's message.

There was one guy — I'll call him Rennie Nova — who took a special dislike for me and us. He would bring his posse to Tao Chemical's shows and harass and heckle us.

Then he upped the ante. He told us he was casting black magic spells against us. He and his crew would stand in the audience at our shows drawing invisible upside-down pentagrams in the air, burning black candles and putrid incense, and scowling at us with their curse faces.

I countered by doing spells of psychic self-defense and the psycho-spiritual equivalent of Tai-Chi: expressing no anger or distress, but affirming that his absurd behavior would bounce off me and go back to him.

None of his harassment ever resulted in violence, thank Goddess. Eventually, he gave up.

In addition to being an early leader of Cancel Culture, Rennie Nova was a punk musician who called his band "Real Music." I loved the "Real" part tagged on to such a generic term as "music."

As my ultimate revenge against him, I stole "Real" and tacked it on to "Astrology," and called my column "Real Astrology."

That series of events was the beginning of my experience of being hated and attacked for putting out my creations—and seeking redemption from it.

Little did I know at the time that this was just the beginning of learning how to remain staunch in the face of such bullshit—how to keep being my true self even in the face of people who didn't like my true self or want me to be my true self.

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If you'd like to donate to my well-being:

1. Visit my Gift Page and donate: https://tinyurl.com/DonationsForRob

2. You can also contribute by buying the Expanded Audio Horoscopes I create every week. These forecasts are different from the written horoscopes I provide here.

They're my four- to five-minute-long ruminations about the current chapter of your life story. They're available at https://RealAstrology.com

3. I also write daily horoscopes, available as text messages sent to your phone. They're shorter than the weekly 'scopes, but more frequent. You can get these regular bursts of inspiration for 67 cents a day if you sign up for a subscription.

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.

4 Commit to offering me a regular donation through my Patreon page at https://Patreon.com/FreeWillAstrology

5. Send checks or cash to me at P.O. Box 4400, San Rafael, CA 94913.

6. Finally, 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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P.S.: No pressure, though! I understand that some of you don't have enough money yourself, and it wouldn't make sense for you to give some to me.

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MORE PRONOIA RESOURCES:

U.S. EPA is Banning a Farm Pesticide Linked To Health Problems In Children. https://tinyurl.com/xkbdpuk

11-year-old Girl Drummer, Nandi Bushell, Finally Joins Foo Fighters on Stage. https://tinyurl.com/24y9c6fc

New Cancer Treatments May Be on The Horizon — Thanks to Success in mRNA Vaccine Trial. https://tinyurl.com/49z5zv2k

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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 September 23

Copyright 2021 by Rob Brezsny

LIBRA (Sept. 23-Oct. 22): Happy Birthday sometime soon, Libra! As gifts, I have collected six useful mini-oracles for you to meditate on during the rest of 2021. They're all authored by Libran aphorist Yahia Lababidi. 1. Hope is more patient than despair and so outlasts it. 2. Miracles are proud creatures; they will not reveal themselves to those who do not believe. 3. A good listener is one who helps us overhear ourselves. 4. One definition of success might be refining our appetites, while deepening our hunger. 5. With enigmatic clarity, life gives us a different answer each time we ask her the same question. 6. Temptation: seeds we are forbidden to water, that are showered with rain.

SCORPIO (Oct. 23-Nov. 21): Pioneering psychologist Carl Jung wrote, "I must also have a dark side if I am to be whole." But it's important to add that some dark sides tend to be destructive and demoralizing, while other dark sides are fertile and interesting. Most of us have a share of each. My reading of the planetary omens suggests that you Scorpios now have extra power to upgrade your relationship with the fertile and interesting aspects of your dark side. I hope you will take advantage! You have a ripe opportunity to deepen and expand your wholeness.

SAGITTARIUS (Nov. 22-Dec. 21): Sagittarian poet Rainer Maria Rilke was a complicated person with many mysterious emotions and convoluted thoughts. And yet, he once wrote that life occasionally brought him "boundless simplicity and joy." I find it amazing he could ever welcome such a state. Kudos to him! How about you, dear Sagittarius? Are you capable of recognizing when boundless simplicity and joy are hovering in your vicinity, ready for you to seize them? If so, be extra alert in the next two weeks. I expect there'll be a visitation or two. Maybe even three or four.

CAPRICORN (Dec. 22-Jan. 19): Baltasar Gracián was not a 21st-century New Age self-help teacher. He was a 17th-century Jesuit philosopher born under the sign of serious, diligent Capricorn. I hope you will be extra receptive to his advice in the coming weeks. He wrote, “Know your key qualities, your outstanding gifts. Cultivate them. Redouble their use." Among the key qualities he gave as examples were disciplined discernment and resilient courage. I bring his thoughts to your attention because the coming weeks will be a rousing time to heed his counsel. It's time for you to identify and celebrate and give abundant expression to your key qualities.

AQUARIUS (Jan. 20-Feb. 18): After studying the genes that create feathers in birds, scientists found that humans have all the necessary genes to grow feathers. (I read about it in National Geographic magazine.) So why don't we grow feathers, then? Well, it's complicated. Basically, the feather-making genes are not fully activated. Who knows? Maybe someday, there'll be technology that enables us to switch on those genes and sprout plumage. I bet my Aquarian friend Jessie, whose body has 30 tattoos and 17 piercings, would take advantage. In the coming weeks, it might be fun for you to imagine having bird-like qualities. You're entering a high-flying phase—a time for ascension, expansion, soaring, and seeing the big picture from lofty vantage points.

PISCES (Feb. 19-March 20): Are there sensual and erotic acts you've never tried and are curious about? Are there experimental approaches on the frontier of your desires that would be intriguing to consider? Might there be lusty experiences you've barely imagined or don't know about—but that could be fun to play with? According to my analysis of the astrological omens, the coming weeks will be a favorable time to explore such possibilities. Be safe and prudent, of course. Don't be irresponsible or careless. But also be willing to expand your notions of your sexuality.

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ARE YOU THE HERO OF YOUR OWN LIFE?

"Whether I shall turn out to be the hero of my own life, or whether that station will be held by anybody else, these pages must show." So begins Charles Dickens' novel David Copperfield.

I'd like to inspire you to create a story of your own that begins with similar words. That's why I provide these free horoscopes for you.

If you'd ever enjoy getting even more assistance from me, tune into your EXPANDED AUDIO HOROSCOPE, which I create for you each week. They're four-to-five-minute meditations on the current state of your destiny.

To buy and 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 on the On the Web. (Discounts are available for bulk purchases.)

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"I don't much believe in astrology. But that doesn't seem to get in the way of me deriving a whole lot of benefits from your expanded audio horoscopes."

—A. Arrosto, Indianapolis

"You have an amazing aptitude for cutting through the lies I tell myself. Thanks for the gentle shocks."

—T. Preneris, Toronto

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ARIES (March 21-April 19): Aries author Steve Maraboli says, "The best way to love someone is not to change them, but instead, help them reveal the greatest version of themselves." If that strategy appeals to you, the next eight weeks will be an excellent time to put it to maximum use. You're entering a phase when you can have an especially beneficial effect on people you care for. You'll be at peak power to help them unleash dormant potentials and access untapped resources.

TAURUS (April 20-May 20): It's a good time to ruminate about things you wish could be part of your life but aren't. You will be wise to develop a more conscious relationship with wistful fantasies about impossible dreams. Here's one reason why this is true: You might realize that some seemingly impossible dreams aren't so impossible. To get in the mood for this fun exercise, meditate on a sample reverie: "I wish I could spend a whole day discovering new music to love. I wish I owned a horse and a boat and a vintage brown and orange striped bohemian cardigan sweater from the 1970s. I wish I knew the names of all the flowers. I wish I felt more at ease about revealing my hidden beauty. I wish I could figure out how to eliminate unnecessary stress from my life."

GEMINI (May 21-June 20): Poet, essayist, and translator Anne Carson calls her husband Robert Currie the "Randomizer." His role in her life as a creative artist is to make quirky recommendations that help her avoid being too predictable. He sends her off in directions she wouldn't have imagined by herself. Here's an example: At one point in her career, Carson confessed she was bored with her writing. The Randomizer suggested, "Let's put dancers into it." In response, she repurposed the sonnets she had been working on into a live theatrical performance featuring many dancers. I think you would benefit from having a Randomizer in your life during the coming weeks. Know anyone who could serve? If not, look for one. Or be your own Randomizer.

CANCER (June 21-July 22): If you so desired, you could travel to Munich, Germany and eat beer-flavored ice cream. Or you could go to Rehoboth, Delaware and get bacon-flavored ice cream. If you were in Taiwan, you could enjoy pineapple shrimp ice cream, and if you were in London, you could sample haggis-flavored ice cream, made from sheep innards. But my advice right now is to stick with old reliables like chocolate, vanilla, and strawberry ice cream—which are still delicious even if they're not exotic. What's my reasoning? In general, the astrological aspects suggest that during the coming weeks, you're most likely to thrive on trustworthy standbys and experiences you know and trust.

LEO (July 23-Aug. 22): Celebrated novelist Jane Austen (1775–1817) wrote, "Sometimes I have kept my feelings to myself, because I could find no language to describe them in." People who aren't as articulate as Austen experience that problem even more often than she did. But the good news, Leo, is that in the coming weeks, you'll be extra skillful at expressing your feelings and thoughts—even those that in the past have been difficult to put into words. I invite you to take maximum advantage of this grace period. Communicate with hearty poise and gleeful abandon.

VIRGO (Aug. 23-Sept. 22): "When you know what's important, it's a lot easier to ignore what's not," writes author and life coach Marie Forleo. Let's make her thought the basis of your work and play in the coming weeks. Get vibrantly clear on what is of supreme value to you, which influences bring out the best in you, and which people make it easy for you to be yourself. Then compose a second list of trivial situations that are of minor interest, influences that make you feel numb, and people who don't fully appreciate you. Next, Virgo, formulate long-term plans to phase out the things in the second list as you increasingly emphasize your involvement in the pleasures named in the first list.

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Homework. It's time for Brag Therapy. Send me your proud and shiny boasts. 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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