Free will astrology 

Week of December 17

ARIES (March 21-April 19): I don't understand why the astronomers responsible for naming new-found objects are so devoid of flair. Here's a prime example: they found a blazar, or blazing quasi-stellar object, in a faraway galaxy. It's powered by a supermassive black hole that's 10 billion times larger than our sun. Why did they give this fantastic oddity the crushingly boring name "Q0906+6930"? Couldn't they have called it something like "Queen Anastasia" or "Blessed Quasimodo" or "Gastromopolopolis"? I trust you won't be as lazy in your approach to all the exotic discoveries you're going to be making in 2010, Aries. Start getting your imagination in top shape. Make sure it's primed and ready for your upcoming walkabout to the far reaches of reality.

TAURUS (April 20-May 20): Scientists say that pretty much everywhere you go on this planet, you are always within three feet of a spider. That will be an especially useful and colorful truth for you to keep in mind during 2010. Hopefully it'll inspire you to take maximum advantage of your own spider-like potentials. It's going to be web-spinning time, Taurus: an excellent phase in your long-term life cycle to weave an extended network - with you at the hub - that will help you catch an abundance of the resources you need.

GEMINI (May 21-June 20): I don't normally recommend that you worry too much about what others think of you. In 2010, however, you could benefit from thinking about that subject more than usual. Judging from the astrological omens, I suspect that you'll be able to correct misunderstandings that have negatively affected your reputation. You might even have the power to shift people's images of you so that they're in relatively close alignment with the truth about who you actually are. Here's the best news: You may be more popular than you've ever been.

CANCER (June 21-July 22): I'm hoping that you will get out more in 2010. And I mean way out. Far out. Not just out to the unexplored hotspots on the other side of town (although that would be good), but also out to marvelous sanctuaries on the other side of paradise. Not just out to the parts of the human zoo where you feel right at home, but also out to places in the urban wilderness where you'll encounter human types previously unknown to you. In conclusion, traveler, let me ask you this: what was the most kaleidoscopic trip you've ever taken? Consider the possibility of surpassing it in the next 12 months.

LEO (July 23-Aug. 22): One of the 20th century's greatest scientific minds was Nobel Prize-winning physicist Max Planck. He knew that in his field, like most others, ingenious innovation doesn't automatically rise to the top. The advancement of good new ideas is hampered by the conservatism and careerism of scientists. "A new scientific truth does not triumph by convincing its opponents and making them see the light," he wrote, "but rather because its opponents eventually die, and a new generation grows up that is familiar with it." In 2010, Leo, there'll be a similar principle at work in your sphere. Influences that have been impeding the emergence of excellence will burn out, dissipate or lose their mojo. As a result, you'll be able to express and take advantage of innovations that have previously been quashed.

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