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Pisces Prior — excerpts from prior annual editions

Next World Stories — excerpts from annual horoscope for Pisces 2009

IT’S AS IF you’re living in two worlds right now, dreaming a dream that you sometimes remember and sometimes forget. Despite the seeming drama of your life there’s the sense that something else is happening, something lightly veiled but penetrable only by careful noticing and a delicate approach. Yes, something larger than you, yet something you contain like a hologram.

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The scene is set in your 12th solar house, Aquarius — the sign before your own. If our own sign is the house of ’self’, then the previous sign is the sign of ‘non-self’, a thinly-veiled world where none of the usual rules apply. Connect the traditional associations with a thread and see what you intuit: dreams, things larger than life, insanity, fantasies and pleasures of the bed, overwhelming institutions and the prenatal era of life.

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Basically we are talking about the unconscious. And at the moment your unconscious is extremely conscious, judging from the number of planets that are aligned there, and the events that are taking place there.

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Given the nature of the 12th, can you see how you might be feeling this kind of intensity verging on overwhelm with all these planets here? Can you imagine how much is lurking in a hidden dimension of your life?

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You can take total responsibility for the world; but you risk insanity. So it’s better to look at things symbolically. The word is archetypally.

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Uranus in your birth sign the past five years has been restless, indeed, relentless. Energizing yes, but incredibly restless; it is a wonder you can sleep at night, and I am sure there have been many nights when you did not. Uranus is the original god of change, pushing you toward the future, ripping you out of the past, and inducing a series of rapid transformations that are far from over.

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Rapid is always one of the energies hanging around with this big green planet, which (at the suggestion of my Pisces brother Richard Tarnas) I prefer to think of as Prometheus. He was the guy who stole the “fire of the gods” and delivered it to humanity.

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What was that fire? What is it now? In a word,В awareness. If Uranus represents innovation, foresight or the willingness to rebel against the fashions of the moment or the crust of history, that rebellion begins with awareness.

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It’s possible to open your eyes and not actually see; you have to look. That act of looking at what you see is what I’m talking about here.

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That experience of seeing changes you, and it is doing so now; it means that you’re consciously processing the data (both inner and outer data) rather than letting it pile up in the corner. In fact, there has been very little room in your life for very much of anything to pile up in the literal corners of your space, and if it has, you would be wise to start digging and filling recycling bins. Consider this a metaphor for your life.

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Uranus in the 1st house has a deep effect on the people around you: the energy of 1st house transits, particularly of outer planets, is kinetic. It spreads into the consciousness of those around us, and those others are not often fully awake; we are not often fully awake, but as a Pisces with Uranus in your sign, you are something very close to it. If you know you’re paying attention and if you’re willing to see what you look at, you can rest easy, if you’re getting any sleep at all these days.

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Within the past year, another significant lifetime transit has entered your personal cosmos and is only about halfway through: Saturn in your solar 7th house (this being Virgo), your relationship area, and opposing your Sun. Saturn in the 7th is about awarenessВ in relationships: most particularly, awareness of the need for progress, for clearing space, and for authentic commitment. Though Uranus in your 1st house may seem to make you erratic or unpredictable, in fact it does represent a commitment to yourself, and the people around you need to either show up or get out of the way.

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There are many factors here, including the need to understand who and what you’re relating to; there is a connection to the ways of the past that you are assessing; and there is a process of making room in your life for the people and experiences you want, which will typically involve a series of transitions.

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With Saturn in the 7th people around you need to be in the right role — for you, and for them. You need to confront the limitations and the potentials in the relationships, and rise to the challenge of being the one who makes the decisions that affect you and at times others.

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I trust that you are finding an unusual depth of confidence; something you’ve never quite experienced before. You’ve been feeling the push to focus your confidence for a long time, though it’s often seemed like grabbing hold of something a little too forceful to easily direct.

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Plus, the sheer force of your personality has become something you must learn to ride like a tiger. It is easy for you to appear not necessarily as innovative, but as wild and a little threatening (believe it or not) and this is an excellent incentive for self-awareness.

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Over the past couple of months, as Saturn and Uranus have aligned from Virgo to Pisces, this has come into focus as a plain, bold necessity. These two planets are forming a mirror of Aquarius. This is such an elegant illustration of your 12th house right now as to defy that it’s “accidental.”

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It is also a perfect confrontation with your potential: the two are often delivered in the same package. Part of the mirror aspect is that in dealing with you, others are being confronted with their potential.

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To sum up in a few words: Uranus through your sign has pushed you to be and express your most authentic individuality, staying on the frontier of your existence. Saturn has summoned your discipline and it will continue to do so. By discipline, I mean the ability to relate to the people around you in some way other than a parental one. They may indeed think they want to be treated as children, or to be your parent. They are neither, but it takes some devotion to awaken them to this fact.

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This journey is all about converting yourself out of what amounts to a false mode of thinking, and revealing the deeper one you have always carried with you. However, I suggest you pause and recognize that you are having a significant influence on your surroundings and all those with whom you come into contact.

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If I may suggest something potentially bold, give up on normal, and by normal, I mean the presumption that you can follow the normal rules of relating. Don’t expect others to do it first. Do it yourself and watch what happens.

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You have encountered many things that don’t work in the process of seeking what works for you. Keep going. Consider yourself an inventor in the realm of relationships, not someone who goes shopping in WalMart or the second-hand store.

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I would propose that for a while, you opt out of conventional models of relationships; and if you are in one, seek an unconventional way to express your affection and attraction to your partner…. At this time in your life, you really cannot be invested in a one-size-fits-all relationship. Do some research. There are other options. There are other ideas. Along the way, if you temporarily suspend the notion of the “special relationship,” you will see that there are many, many other fulfilling options that do not depend exclusively on structure and obligation as a reality framework.

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And in the midst of this, you must continue to make your own way, despite what anyone else says, does or feels; or for that matter, does not say, does not do or does not feel. This and nothing else can be called free.

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Many planets are contained in your 12th, and they seek to express themselves through your personality and relationships. And here, you are clearly seeking freedom. The thing about freedom is that once we attain it, we become beholden to it and nothing else. You cannot go back and be true to yourself. You cannot throw off the weight of oppression, of cultural rules and of compulsive patterns and be happy if you return there. Therefore freedom of any kind is an ongoing investment, and the returns are not always obvious.

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In Pisces style, you may feel like you have not really accomplished much, but your charts say otherwise. Indeed, they say you are only at the beginning of a process of building on foundations long in the making. Pay attention as your creations rise above the base they stand on, and as your psyche matures beyond where you thought it would.

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However, I suggest you use land-based metaphors for what you are working toward now, particularly as you move from a phase of accomplishment to finding your true place, your tribe, your true friends in the world. Remember that you are pushing back against a vastly repressive culture, but you are doing so from a stance of genuine strength; just assume that the things that need to yield to your intentions will do so.

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The 12th is the house of prisons, but it’s the house of the imagination’s liberty. Most people are prisoners of their unconscious thoughts; of their family’s history; of peer pressure; of guilt; of the violent tendency of humanity to go against nature and human nature; and most of all, we tend to be prisoners of our imagination, that feeling Elliot Smith described as frustrated fireworks inside our heads. You are bigger than all of this — all of it.

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As you do this, you will feel your strength return; you will have a more dependable relationship to your fears, your talents and the vast unknown that you are.

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Small World Stories — excerpts from annual horoscope for Pisces 2008

Pisces is the Omega point of the zodiac, the end of the cycle. Uranus is striving to take everything you have learned from all your other journeys and help you apply it to your life, and to the world, in these years.

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Well, you have taken on some of those properties, some of that passion for setting yourself free and consequently, for spreading the energy of liberation.

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If Pisces has a sleepy quality, Uranus brings the energy of awakening, awareness and radical perception — the ability to see down to the roots of things, and this has kept you awake and wanting to know more. Curiosity is a potent quality of Uranus.

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The only people you can really tolerate under a potent Uranus transit are those who are devoted to their own freedom, creativity, passion and living directly in the moment. Everyone else will feel boring or like a sham.

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You don’t want to walk around judging the world, and you don’t have to. You can merely quietly assess, being honest about your responses to people and to what they do to one another.

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The ingress of Pluto into Capricorn speaks of the impact you will have on the people and organizations around you, but this is based on one salient fact, which is your commitment to honesty with yourself.

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But all at once, your life is different, and you are being treated differently. You have slipped into your own presence like a hand into a glove; like a soul that fits into a body. That has actually made it easier for you to connect with others and for them to connect with you. The great lesson of these years is that the more in harmony with yourself you are, the easier it is to be in harmony with your environment.

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Saturn, to you, can represent someone who is mainly a friend, and it can also represent an expression of a side of yourself that is deeply hidden in your psyche. You may not quite be finding the warm, wet and squishy quality of encounter that Pisces prefers, but rather the world is meeting you on serious terms, with serious intentions. Keep your sense of humor and remember that it’s a barometer of how you really feel.

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That is a devotion. Saturn has a lot to say about this topic. There is a building process with Saturn involved, there is a structuring process and at times a layering(or unlayering) process. There is that sense of building respect in the long term; everything about Saturn has a long-term quality and you will benefit from this.

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Saturn is about consistency and honoring tradition; Uranus is about innovation and overthrowing the ways of the past. You may feel like there’s some impossible quality about this situation, something that might never work out. Let’s call that a healthy respect for the unknown.

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You may not see how these odd pieces fit together. You may not see how something that seems intractable will release itself. You may not quite understand what is motivating you on the deepest level; and in all of these things you need to have faith.

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Not passive hope, but active faith that you are growing toward your destination while you do your utmost to live every day to the best of your ability. That means loving the people in your life with all their limits, their gifts and their opportunities for change. Spend no time waiting; spend every moment living consciously. Give yourself the freedom you need to be who you are, and make sure you consciously give everyone the space to deal with it themselves.

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Let your energy signature bear no trace of hypocrisy; of jealousy; of self-righteousness — keep yourself grounded, be honest, strive for total awareness if not impeccability.

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Uranus and Saturn have at least one thing in common: they honor necessity, and you can be sure that people need you.

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Everything ends up in the sea — everything. But the sea has a way of purifying itself, of regenerating, and of nourishing all life in the process.

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Trees do not usually grow in the desert. They more often grow in soil that has been enriched by centuries of life composting over and over in an endless cycle.

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Aquarius is for you the 12th house, the personal Omega point of your life and the spawning ground for the life that you will lead in the future.

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At times it may feel like you don’t exist; like you’re invisible; like you are in a continuous, slippery misunderstanding with yourself. Living with this takes discipline, and part of that discipline is gathering the benefits of your experiences and your perceptions.

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Chiron and Nessus are putting a microscope to your fears, your desires, your extremely rich fantasy life, your creativity and your sense of connection to the cosmos. Every sign has its distinctions. For Pisces one of those distinctions is the way in which you actually have a relationship to all of creation, all potential, and the hopes, dreams and nightmares of the entire human race.

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Remember that the 12th contains things thatВ are more akin to the substance of dreams than of reality — but they are extremely realistic ones, and you have a way of weaving those dreams into something real.

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We all to some degree possess a sense of not belonging, of being wrong, of being too strange for this strange planet. Even if you’re one of those “absolutely normal [I typed ‘moral’!] people from out in Buffalo, NY, you will sooner or later come to a point in your life when you feel like you have your feet straddled between two irreconcilable realities. Sooner or later, a human mind questions existence or it’s fair to say that it is not aware of its own existence.

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The fact that you are capable of so much doubt is an excellent sign — it’s evidence of a conscious relationship to the cosmos, to existence, to life, to death and what exists beyond the teacup ride we’re all on.

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“If you tell yourself the truth, you can do just about anything else you want. That is the price you will have to pay in order to go to the next level or stage of your life; the price of freedom. This is a small tariff for some people, and the highest there is for others. Which is it for you? While you’re sizing that up, you can also size up the price of any other way of living, and there are several options, to be sure. Of course, the real price of the truth is that which is not true. For some people that is no price at all; for others, it would represent the collapse of their entire existence, at least psychologically. Now, as a Pisces, you need your fantasies, and you need your dreams. But you need them in moderation, like any drug or substance (including art and music) that provides a pathway beyond the rational world.” — Eric Francis Coppolino from Pisces January 2008 monthly horoscope

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You must create the identity of a person who is properly cared for, has adequate supplies and has enough left over to experience some sense of having extra to save or invest.

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You will learn a lot from listening to the things people say about money, particularly the ones who have what in common parlance we call money issues. I think this will prove my point, and we can move onto our last subject for the moment. If you listen, you will hear that most people, rather than saying they don’t have enough money,В make a case for why that is, which is in turn based on who they think they are.

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In any event, Pholus speaks of something you absolutely must do, and of which you cannot predict the results. Oh don’t worry, you’re going to get results. But to make sure they are close to some form of results you want, you must stay close to your creative core. There is no room for bullshit, for throwaway products, for ideas you don’t value or work you don’t love. If you get rid of everything that does not belong there, your life will have plenty of room for the one thing that does — you.

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The Spiral Door — excerpts from annul horoscope for Pisces 2007

SENSE OF MISSION is the theme, the message, the meaning, the time of year and the time of humanity. It is, rather, if you have the inclination or willingness to feel — something not true in all parts of the world, or for all people, but the Spiral Door is wide open for you, and is continuing to open.

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But there’s always something that needs to be done on our planet, and when we’re surrounded by those with whom we share intention and work, we can easily share love.

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Our times call for nothing if not paying attention, first, and an all-embracing imagination, second. Rarely is that your problem; rather, your problem more typically involves keeping a positive attitude and allowing yourself to believe your contribution is part of a necessary exchange of energy. It involves feeling you are some actual value to the world, and feeling that this value in some way nourishes you.

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If you don’t sense your mission, you need to ask if you don’t prefer dramas. At this point in your life, you will get the one you prefer.

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The message of the Aries Point is that the ‘self’ and ‘society’ are integral to one another. This is obvious, but our human sense of separation affects not only our relationship to Prime Creator, and to one another, it affects our relationship to the community and culture of which we are part. And we often experience a sense of separation from ourselves, which basically puts the world and everyone in it out of reach.

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Aries is in your 2nd solar house, so it represents your personal resources, from cash to your talents, from what you use to make your living to all that you consider your personal property. Because Aries is here, you are your most important asset. You might say this is true for everyone, but I don’t think it is; there are many ways to tap into energy, and for you, it’s directly through your self-awareness and the ongoing process of weaving your relationship into everything larger than you.

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Eris, one of whose themes is alienation, appearing in Aries helps us understand why it is that Pisces people tend to have such a hard time making friends with themselves, as well as why we must deal with so much shadow material when it comes to self-worth.

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The more energy, the more damage a relatively small liability can do. The more power you are working with, the more dangerous a relatively small character flaw can be, and the more important it is that you understand and address it.

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Every decision is an affirmation of who you think you are. As you decide, you vote for or against yourself, sometimes thousands of times a day. The more you are able to see that all your decisions are essentially modeled after how you feel about yourself, you’ll be able to take the process of how you feel into your own hands. But it’s not enough to sense your own inadequacy; I suggest knowing how you got that way, because at the moment, it’s the only thing that can stop you.

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Feminism died an early death, but if women are willing to center themselves, and stop being at war with themselves, they can indeed compete in the way that men must do.

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Yet I think there is a healthy way to channel your skepticism, particularly if you admit that it’s there. Indeed, the ability to question yourself is a great asset, it keeps you honest, and it keeps you clear, as long as you ask the questions in a way that has answers; honest questions usually have answers, and the dishonest ones tend not to. If Saturn opposite Neptune is about having no illusions, then let go of them gladly so that you may live the life you want to live, rather than the lie you perhaps think you must live.

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True sense of mission, as those who lack it can tell you, is about having a connection to something beyond oneself and beyond one’s immediate needs, and here we have the essence of Sagittarius. It is about assimilating reality one atom at a time, but at the moment, very quickly.

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And here, you have been on a long, intense and at times very difficult mission, because Pluto has pushed you to go to the depths at any time you aspire to anything greater than what you are. But it is this combination of reaching the depths and reaching upward that unlocks potential and creates lasting progress.

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You may have noticed a few things lately: one being that you are considerably more radical than most of the people around you. Second, though this may have been repelling in the past, you are now gathering a group around you, made of genuine individuals who share certain key values. This magnetism is the energy of Uranus. The more you value yourself, the more you will feel part of your community.

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If you choose at the beginning to take your time and allow commitment to grow, and indeed to allow the places in your life where commitment does not really exist to be shown to you, Saturn will bestow the gift of clarity, stability and solid exchange in your most personal relationships, which in these chaotic times is the best gift you could want.

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Once you have your passion, of which there is no shortage right now, the new form follows, sometimes easily, sometimes less so — but it follows, and this must guide your priorities, your choices, and your sense of what is necessary. That will have repercussions, not everyone around you (as you are no doubt seeing) will be up to the challenge, and indeed (as you are no doubt seeing) some people most assuredly will be up to the challenge.

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And at this time, your mission, which originates inside you, is now wide open before you — if indeed you will open your eyes, look and — trust what you see.

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