Astrology? Are you serious?
Actually: yes I am. We all know what Sun Sign we are, and we’ve all read a horoscope or two (even if it’s just for kicks). But as with many other things in life, there’s more going on below the surface than most people realize.
I’m a professional astrologer, and I write for both Beliefnet and Patheos, but I also do consultations with people about their birth charts. I see everyday how it can provide unique and remarkable insight and guidance on nearly any subject.
But you don’t have to be a professional astrologer to get real and practical use out of astrology. Even a little knowledge of the basics can give you an advantage when it comes to understanding others, and making more effective use of your time and energy.
The more you work with it, the more you’ll realize that yes — we do live in a modern and rational world, and yet astrology still works, and it has real value.
“I don’t believe in astrology; I’m a Sagittarius and we’re skeptical.” – Arthur C. Clarke
Look up “astrology” on the Internet and it won’t be long before you come across someone “debunking” it. Admittedly, the idea that where the planets were when you were born has an effect on your personality, or where those planets will be next week will have an effect on your Performance Review next Tuesday, seems a little ridiculous.
I understand that: I tend to be a skeptic about a lot of things myself. It was only after years of serious observation that I was convinced that astrology and horoscope is “a real thing”. And it’s only because it keeps working that I keep working as an astrologer.
Lots of things in life sound crazy, yet turn out to be absolutely true. The truth is that, there has been little proper research done on it, and is unlikely to because academics don’t want to be caught defending something as irrational as astrology. Now that’s a self-fulfilling prophesy!
Nonetheless, the most thorough astrological study ever conducted did in fact find a valid connection on the effects of the placement of Mars in the birth charts of professional athletes… just like any astrologer could have told you there would be.
It Helps You Understand Others
“I am an Aries. Although I do not believe in astrology, I think this is exactly the right sign to have been born under.” –Anne Lamott
If a Canadian, a Texan, and a Korean walked into a job interview, it would obviously be wrong to base your hiring decision based on their nationality. And yet understanding the culture each person comes from can help you understand them and how they approach you as the interviewer.
Regardless of who the most qualified candidate is in, it could help you both tailor your approach to each individual and understand each of them better.
Is the Canadian really less qualified than the Texan, or was the Canadian raised in a culture that doesn’t encourage “blowing your own horn”? Is the Korean more stand-offish than the Texan, or was the Korean simply raised in a culture that’s less comfortable with shaking a stranger’s hand?
Knowing these things about a person, even if all you know is their Sun Sign, can be useful for more than just work. Is your Taurus toddler more likely than most to respond to a treat as a reward? Is your Sagittarius more likely than the average kid to wander off if left unsupervised?
In all likelihood, yes. The same basic principles also apply to your clients or family or anyone else you encounter.
It Helps You Understand Yourself
“We are born at a given moment, in a given place and, like vintage years of wine, we have the qualities of the year and of the season of which we are born.” – Carl Jung
It’s pretty hard to win at poker if you don’t know and understand the cards you’re holding. Likewise, self-knowledge is one of the most powerful tools you can have in life.
We all have a hard time being completely objective about ourselves, but astrology presents the personality in a more objective way that can be of great use. Think of it as Chapter One of your personal Operator’s Manual. It’ll point out all sorts of useful things about you that may never have occurred to you before.
Are you really bored with your otherwise great job, or (for example, if you’re a Gemini) do you just need to schedule more (but shorter) breaks for yourself?
Astrology Has Practical Applications
“Millionaires don’t use Astrology, billionaires do.” – J.P. Morgan
Even if you don’t want to learn astrology, there are two basic astrological concepts that have REAL practical applications: The Void of Course Moon, and Mercury Retrograde.
The Void of Course Moon is a condition that can last for a few minutes (or occasionally, for over a day) about every two and a half days where projects that are begun tend NOT to turn out as planned, and generally nothing gets done as it should.
Ever had one of those days where everything feels slow and heavy, and none of your deadlines get met properly? Odds are, the Moon was Void of Course. You don’t need to do all the calculations to figure out when this is happening: I run a listing of those dates and times at the end of every month on my Beliefnet blog, and the same information is available elsewhere on the Internet.
The other powerful astrology concept you can use is Mercury Retrograde. When the planet Mercury is retrograde (meaning that it appears, from our perspective on Earth, to be travelling “backwards” in its orbit), communications and ideas are more likely to go astray. Contracts and agreements are less likely to work out as planned, e-mails are less likely to get to the right recipient, and spelling errors are more common during a Mercury Retrograde period.
But Mercury Retrograde is great time for introspection and long-term planning. Mercury Retrograde happens four or five times a year. Many websites on the Internet list when they will happen.
It Gives Insight To The Future
“I believe in astrology as much as I do in genetics.” – Quincy Jones
A well-written horoscope can be of use, but compared to the complexities of properly-applied astrology, it’s pretty limited. “You should quit smoking” is perfectly valid medical advice, but it’s unlikely to be the only medical advice you ever need. Nonetheless, quitting smoking really is a good idea.
A proper astrological consultation isn’t fatalistic — you have Free Will and the ability to produce your own outcomes. But having said that: if you were planning a picnic, a weather forecast would be pretty helpful, wouldn’t it?
Talking to an astrologer can help you understand the forces at work around you now and in the future, and thus can tell you when is best to start a new project or look for a new job… and when that hassle at work is likely to pass.
It Can Be More Effective Than Regular Counseling
“I have been criticized and ridiculed for turning to astrology, but after a while, I reached the point where I didn’t care.” – Nancy Reagan
I took psychology in college and was trained in counseling techniques because I wanted to help people make their lives better. However, it didn’t take me long to get frustrated with how ploddingly slow the traditional counseling process can be.
When I use astrology to inform the counseling process, it’s not only effective, but can cut through so much of that “lying around talking about your childhood” business, when all you really needed was stress-reduction techniques.
That, and yes: it really can predict the future. Let’s see a regular counselor do that!
Have you tried using astrology before?
What was your experience? Tell us in the comments section below!