)ARIES (March 21-April 19): In 2013, I pledge to conspire with you to increase your mastery of the art of friendship. Together we will concentrate on making you an even stronger ally than you already are. We will upgrade your skill at expressing your feelings with openhearted clarity, and in ways that don't make people defensive. We will also inspire you to help others communicate effectively in your presence. I hope you understand that doing this work will empower you to accomplish feats that were never before possible for you.
TAURUS (April 20-May 20): Chickens and alligators share a common ancestor. Seventy million years ago, they were both archosaurs. That's why chickens have a gene that has the ability to grow teeth. A few years ago, a biological researcher at the University of Wisconsin managed to activate this capacity, inducing a few mutant chickens to sprout alligator teeth. I predict there will be a metaphorically comparable event happening for you in 2013, Taurus. The "chicken" part of you will acquire some of the gravitas of an alligator.
GEMINI (May 21-June 20): "People wish to learn to swim and at the same time to keep one foot on the ground," said French novelist Marcel Proust. An attitude like that is always a barrier to growth, of course, but in 2013 it would be especially ill-advised for you Geminis. In order to win full possession of the many blessings that will be offering themselves to you, you will have to give up your solid footing and dive into the depths over and over again. That prospect may sometimes be a bit dicey and nerve-racking. But it should also generate the most fun you've had in years.
CANCER (June 21-July 22): Here's the horoscope I hope to be able to write for you a year from now: You broke free of the chains that kept you enslaved to your primary source of suffering. And now you have forged a resilient new relationship with your primary source of suffering — a relationship that allows you to deal with it only when it's healthy for you to do so and only when you feel strong enough to do it. Very nicely done! Congratulations! Excellent work!
LEO (July 23-Aug. 22): "In this world," said Oscar Wilde, "there are only two tragedies. One is not getting what one wants, and the other is getting it." I'm counting on you to refute the last part of that questionable assertion, Leo. According to my analysis of the long-term astrological omens, you will definitely be getting what you want in the next six months. You will receive your prize … you will earn your badge … you will win a big game or claim your birthright or find your treasure. When that happens, I trust you will make sure it is an enduring blessing. There will be no sadness involved!
VIRGO (Aug. 23-Sept. 22): English poet Alfred Tennyson wrote so many memorable lines that he is among the top 10 most frequently cited authors in The Oxford Dictionary of Quotations. One of his most famous passages was "'Tis better to have loved and lost / Than never to have loved at all." When he was on his deathbed at age 83, his enigmatic last words were, "I have opened it." Let's make that declaration your mantra for the coming year, Virgo. In your case, it will have nothing to do with death, but just the opposite. It will be your way of announcing your entrance into a brighter, lustier more fertile phase of your life.
LIBRA (Sept. 23-Oct. 22): Back in 1830, it was expensive to stay up and do things in your room after dark. In order to earn enough money to pay for the whale oil that would light your lamp for an hour, you had to work for 5.4 hours. And today? It's cheaper. You have to put in exactly 0.001 second of hard labor to afford an hour's worth of light. I suspect that in 2013 there will be a similar boost in your ease at getting the light you need to illuminate your journey. I'm speaking metaphorically here, as in the insight that arises from your intuition, the emotional energy that comes from those you care about and the grace of the Divine Wow. All that good stuff will be increasing. (Thanks to the History Channel's "America: The Story of Us" for the info about the price of light.)
SCORPIO (Oct. 23-Nov. 21): "I've been absolutely terrified every moment of my life," said Scorpio painter Georgia O'Keeffe, "and I've never let it keep me from doing a single thing I wanted to do." I think her declaration is excellent medicine for you. In 2013, you will have great potential for upgrading your relationship with your fears — not necessarily suppressing them or smashing them, but rather using them more consistently as a springboard, capitalizing on the emotions they unleash and riding the power they stir up.
SAGITTARIUS (Nov. 22-Dec. 21): "Ambition can creep as well as soar," said Irish philosopher Edmund Burke. That will be good for you to remember throughout 2013, Sagittarius. Later this year, the time may come for your ambition to soar — in the month of April, for example, and again in the month of August. But for the foreseeable future, I think your ambition will operate best if you keep it contained and intense, moving slowly and gradually, attending to the gritty details with supreme focus.
CAPRICORN (Dec. 22-Jan. 19): In Tom Robbins' book Skinny Legs and All, one of the main characters, Ellen Cherry, has a conversation with a voice in her head. The voice gives her a piece of advice: "The trick is this: keep your eye on the ball. Even when you can't see the ball." I think that happens to be excellent counsel for you to heed during the next six months, Capricorn. You may not always be able to figure out what the hell is going on, but that shouldn't affect your commitment to doing the right thing. Your job is to keep your own karma clean and pure — and not worry about anyone else's karma.
AQUARIUS (Jan. 20-Feb. 18): I'll be bold and predict that 2013 will be a time when you'll discover more about the art of happiness than you have in years. Here are some clues to get you started. 1. "It is not easy to find happiness in ourselves, and it is not possible to find it elsewhere." -Agnes Repplier. 2. "There is only one way to happiness and that is to cease worrying about things that are beyond the power of our will." -Epictetus. 3. "For the rational, healthy person, the desire for pleasure is the desire to celebrate his control over reality. For the neurotic, the desire for pleasure is the desire to escape from reality." -Nathaniel Branden. 4. "Our happiness springs mainly from moderate troubles, which afford the mind a healthful stimulus, and are followed by a reaction which produces a cheerful flow of spirits." -E. Wigglesworth. 5. "Happiness is essentially a state of going somewhere, wholeheartedly, one-directionally, without regret or reservation." -William H. Sheldon. 6. "We act as though comfort and luxury were the chief requirements of life, when all that we need to make us really happy is something to be enthusiastic about." -Charles Kingsley.
PISCES (Feb. 19-March 20): In 2013, I pledge to help you feel at peace and in love with your body; I will do everything in my power to encourage you to triumph over media-induced delusions that tempt you to wish you were different from who you actually are. My goal is to be one of your resourceful supporters in the coming months — to be a member of your extensive team of allies and facilitators. And I will be working with you to ensure that this team grows to just the right size and provides you with just the right foundation. If all goes well, your extra help will ensure that you finish almost everything you start in the coming year. You will regularly conquer everyday chaos and be a master of artful