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Author Topic: Whose qualified to do astrology readings?  (Read 2367 times)
Elen
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« on: May 13, 2010, 12:18 PM »

Hi Rad/Anyone who feels able to respond,

In the practice charts thread, Rad quoted Sri Yukteswar as saying that only a person with genuine intuitive wisdom can accurately interpret a chart.  It seems to me then that the only people truly able to interpret a chart are 3rd spiritual? Is it wise (I am asking this for myself, not as a way of criticizing or questioning others) to pursue a path as an astrologer if one has not reached that stage?  Will one likely do more harm than good?  This is a really big question for me.  I truly love astrology.  It has been a GREAT teacher for me.  Yet I am extremely sensitive to the harm that one can cause another (perhaps this is ego error?).  And this fear has kept me from doing readings (I've done a few for friends, but mostly have felt anxious about it despite my desire to help), yet doing readings is part of the process of learning.  Would anyone be willing to address these concerns?  Again, I am not questioning or criticizing those who do readings.  This is just my particular Pluto/Virgo deal that I'm trying to work through.

Thank you,
Ellen
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Rad
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« Reply #1 on: May 14, 2010, 09:04 AM »

Hi Ellen,

 What your natural concern comes down to is how any of us are oriented to the work itself. So, so many in astrology, and many other disciplines, feel within themselves that they have to be in an inner position of 'authority' relative to the work that they do: because of doing the work itself. So they adopt an inner attitude that they 'know all', and present themselves this way. Typically, in the world of astrology, a person comes to an astrologer and the astrologer feels within themselves that they must know all about the person from the moment they sit down. Thus, the person comes in, sits down, and the astrologer begins immediately reciting a variety of descriptions about the person in front of them, where these descriptions themselves have  been learned from this or that book, this or that teacher.
 What JWG taught was the very opposite. He taught that one of the very best ways to learn astrology was through observation and correlation. Thus, when a person comes in to learn about themselves through astrology to sit with them at first, and actually ask questions about their life. Or to have the person present questions to the astrologer where the very nature of the questions would correlate to that persons actual reality, and the nature of their individual evolutionary conditions. This then allows for the astrologer to actually orientate their consciousness, and intuition, to the person's actual reality. The very essence of this approach is one of LISTENING first to the person's actual reality, and then based on that listening gained through observation orientating the symbols in their chart to that observation gained through the listening.
 For the astrologer who is in the learning their work, who does not have a lot of water under the bridge, so to speak, it then comes down to how the astrologer presents them self to the person. And that means acknowledging to the person that they are in the process of learning, and thus they are not an 'authority' wherein everything they see or say is the gospels truth. In the beginning it is necessary to use words like 'this signature suggests this or that: do you find or feel that is true' ? This way then encourages a dialog between the astrologer and the person where the dialogs themselves present an ongoing vehicle in which the astrologer is continuing to observe and correlate. Thus the astrologer is continuing to learn. This process will naturally deepen not only the astrologers capacity through the knowledge gained, but their own intuition as well.
 JWG shared many times that in the beginning of his work the he worked for 'free' for over fives years. And wherever he lived in the world he would put out signs that said, in essence, 'free readings'. And he did so on purpose for the reasons above.
 In this way there will always come a time in which the would-be astrologer would then feel 'ready' to do their work on a more professional basis. And, in the way, they will have learned a great deal that will not only prepare them for the work, but also learning how NOT TO HARM PEOPLE.

 God Bless, Rad

 

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PamS
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« Reply #2 on: May 14, 2010, 09:54 AM »

Thank you Rad for bringing this up. 

The most unexpected aspect of doing readings for people for me has been this whole psychic/astrologer thing... I do sometimes have dreams about clients before they arrive to me, but in a way the last thing I want to do is read through everyone.  Sometimes the stuff I pick up about the  clients they are not ready to deal with...  I have learned to intuit to say to some prospective clients that I am not a psychic and I do ask questions about their lives....  It has been a great learning experience for me... I have actually had to turn a client or two down as they just wanted someone to tell them what to do and ultimatly I dont feel comfortable with that.... Its a good thing to know when you start seeing clients that this stuff does happen... I let the client guide the reading...

thanks,
pam
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Rad
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« Reply #3 on: May 14, 2010, 10:48 AM »

Hi Pam,
 
 Wonderful, just wonderful ......... to me it's exactly the right way to do this work. I have had many clients too over the years that just wanted me to talk without any interaction with them. Their attitude being something akin to going to a gambling place and putting their money is the slot, and pulling the handle. "Hey, I am here, have paid you money, now do your thing" ........ like you I quickly have shown them the way out...........

 God Bless, Rad
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Elen
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« Reply #4 on: May 14, 2010, 02:05 PM »

Hi Rad & Pam,

Thank you so much for your responses!  Yes, it is very much an issue re: authority for me.  On one level, I think I project outward my own inner issues with authority.  As a woman and a gay person, I do not enjoy it at all when others try to tell me what my experience is.  And, so, as a "practitioner" I do not wish to do this to others.  It has been a quandary for me to try to figure out how to do astrology readings (having the symbols and so being the one who's supposed to "do the explaining") with this deeply held internal orientation of desiring to somehow create space for the other person - to RESPOND to other other person, rather than direct the other person, yet with all the models out there entraining you to direct...  It also seems that with so much skepticism of astrology, most people come and don't really interact because they want to see you "prove" astrology, which I don't want to participate in.  I feel sad when this happens but also frustrated because astrology can't help you if you don't participate.  (I also think a lot of people don't say anything because they are deeply absorbing what is being communicated, which has taken me a # of years to figure out.  A year or 2 after I did my 1st spate of readings, after which I felt I had completely failed, I met up with someone I'd done a reading for and out of the blue she asked about astrology and said that the reading really helped her and that she hoped I'd continue...)  At the same time, I think this is a dilemma for me because I DO have "authority" issues, so I fall into the trap of thinking I have to be the authority, yet reject this because I want nothing to do with being the authority.  There is another deep issue here for me and that is the issue of taking responsibility for myself.  Doing astrology readings would mean that I'd have to accept responsibility for my own life - for working to meet my own needs, etc, and taking responsibility for my actions/interactions with others.  For the 1st time in my life I can feel myself WANTING to do this (shhh)!  Also, a light is beginning to shine in a new way where I am beginning to understand that the authority issue is kind of a red herring.  It's kind of hard to explain but I seem to be orienting more towards gratitude and devotion and accepting my outright love of astrology (I feel a little exposed having said THAT) and my own desire to grow and letting that be my guide rather than my manufactured angsts.

Again, thank you both so much.

Ellen
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Gonzalo
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« Reply #5 on: May 14, 2010, 02:09 PM »

Hi Ellen

Felt moved to answer your question for myself (one more time-like you I’m in the Virgo Pluto crew, and my SN, ruler Mercury, Mars and Moon are in Virgo too), and further, to share my thoughts and my personal experience about this topic.

I understand the fear of causing harm. I feel it almost all the time. Though, it would seem that any human activity, in any field, contains a potentiality of causing damages. So, the question for me becomes if I am meant to do this or that type of work. And then, how to avoid the existing possibility of causing harm.

What I do is taking quite a lot of time working with each chart I am to read. Given that few Souls come to me for a reading, it is possible for me to do so. This implies taking some three hours, which sometimes reach more than ten hours, to prepare for the reading, in order to understand the chart as much as I can before the actual session. I work in this previous analysis of the chart based on the questions the Soul has: I ask them before hand what their concerns are. Sometimes this is not easy because of the expectation of many Souls to be passive in face of astrology, which many times is a projection of their desire not to be responsible for the situation. Other times it is just because of the idea they have about how astrology works. Anyway, at times I have to insist that the questions are necessary. I always look at the current transits to the chart, which many times will be involved in the questions which motivate the consultation. And many times I look at the chart from the perspective of how the Soul will receive whatever I may need to tell in the reading. Based on this I decide that perhaps I will have to be emphatic or that I will need to avoid misunderstandings, etc. I allow the Soul I am looking at through the chart to produce an effect on me, and I reflect on why this Soul is causing me such effect. Sometimes this is very intense for me, as it induces the need for me to review and analyse myself. Based on the chart, I make some hypothesis about the Soul which I will then need to contrast in the session. Then, when I meet the Soul for the session, I dedicate about three hours to the reading. Most of this time is about listening to what the Soul wants to share. I encourage them to speak about their life so they give me enough information and impressions about what their questions imply for them. At the session, there are many means that can help to identify the reality as it exists for the client. Noel Tyl’s book “Counseling and Synthesis” gives some good ideas that can help in the observation process and, further, in connecting these observations to the chart. This is one astrology book JWG recommends (in Pluto II). Further, I always check through questions how the clients feel about what I tell them. And I check how they feel at the end of the session, and many times I also write to them or call them some time after the session to know how they have felt, and if they need any clarification or have any further questions.

Of course this way is very time-spending. And of course it is possible for me, again, because there are very few Souls that come my way for advice. I would say in the current year 2010 I have made 16 readings. One time I remember it didn’t work this way. I went for the reading I had prepared to the client’s home and did the reading. But then there was a friend of this Soul who also needed astrological advice. I had not prepared the session, but this Soul was quite in despair. So, I had the chart drawn at astro.com and it was easy to read in relation to the situation the Soul was undergoing. So, I did the reading, and it was very helpful.

I try to remain within my limits all the time, and don’t tell anything I do not see clearly in the chart and which I am not sure if will serve the Soul in a positive way. I have told people that I don’t know how to interpret their chart, or that I don’t have the answer for some question. Fortunately, most of the time, there are important things which can be addressed in a positive way.

Another point I think of is that, in the consultation session, the Soul that has come to you is not alone with astrology, so to speak: "you" are there, and you are assuming responsibility for being there in this work. Also, if you are there for the right reasons, then God is with you, helping you in your work. It is necessary to have faith.

Other point I think helps me to avoid causing harm is that I normally want people to feel good about the reading. I want them to feel encouraged, and supported. So normally I will not tell them anything that will make them feel bad, unless it is necessary and they have asked the relevant question. In such case I will be even more careful with what I say.

Well, the above is what I think based on my own experience. I hope it may be of help.

God Bless,

Gonzalo
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ari moshe
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« Reply #6 on: May 15, 2010, 09:00 AM »

I appreciate this thread...

I've actually been swamped with a whole bunch of readings this week! It really comes in cycles. A couple things I am always amazing at/observing:

The clients who come to me are typically addressing similar areas of growth that I am addressing as well. Time and time again, I have the opportunity to compassionately communicate the very things I am needing to hear!

If astrology is a way of service for me in this life- then it makes sense that the clients I get in a singular bracket of time seem to be presenting consistent themes. For example I'll get 3 clients in a row who have Pluto squaring the nodes or something like that- it seems to be a divine method of pedagogy.

I've also come to that dilemma where a client doesn't have any questions for me, or wish to put any energy towards the reading. Just like that analogy- putting money in a slot machine. I have never said "no" to them before. What I just realized reading these posts is that it's my responsibility in fact to not take them on. Their words are saying "i want a reading" but their soul is saying "i dont have any interest in learning about my evolutionary dynamics". It's my job to listen to their soul as best as I can.

Quote
 For the 1st time in my life I can feel myself WANTING to do this (shhh)!  Also, a light is beginning to shine in a new way where I am beginning to understand that the authority issue is kind of a red herring.  It's kind of hard to explain but I seem to be orienting more towards gratitude and devotion and accepting my outright love of astrology (I feel a little exposed having said THAT) and my own desire to grow and letting that be my guide rather than my manufactured angsts.

Thank you for sharing that with us- I have gone through that same emotional shift as well. For a long time (in fact while Saturn was crossing into my first house) I actually gave up my business entirely and stopped being an astrologer- i was identifying with "how much i dont know" or "how spiritually, emotionally, socially unadept I am- not fit to give readings". I created all these excuses to prove that "I am not good enough/ centered enough/ it's too intellectual etc.... and therefore astrology isn't for me." But it hit me like a ton of bricks this past winter- it isn't for me! I get to be of service, and THE MORE I UNDERSTAND EA, THE MORE I CAN BE OF SERVICE. Now I truly do feel gratitude! And I know that I do help people.
 
The old feelings of wanting to not do any more astrology come up often, and I'm learning that it usually happens when I strive too much to understand something, and then become overwhelmed/disillusioned. Instead of taking it easy and appreciating the mystery.

ari moshe
« Last Edit: May 15, 2010, 09:03 AM by ari moshe » Logged
Elen
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« Reply #7 on: May 15, 2010, 03:55 PM »

Hi Gonzalo and Ari,

Thank you so much for sharing your experiences.  I so appreciate your sensitivities to my concerns and sharing your own experiences with and answers to them.  So much to take in and absorb.  So much goodness and caring.  Thank you!

Peace,
Ellen
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Bradley J
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« Reply #8 on: May 15, 2010, 06:05 PM »

Ellen and all,

What a great thread! thank you.

I've also had similar inner struggles with readings/sessions.
For myself, I recently realized I was putting pressure on myself by sticking to these pay scales that I thought were valuing my own time investment.  I have little extra time in my life.
So, I had this $80-120 scale and then a low income scale of $40-60.  Yet, part of me was judging myself and had inner fear of failing to provide a reading that was worth the clients investment.
Now that I have fully exclusively embraced EA, I also have changed my orientation to readings.
First, I realized that some of the best times and most valuable for others have been the 'off the cuff' informal discussions.  The actual set up for readings and expectations I had put on myself were being counter-productive and blocking my own intuition and capacity to listen and connect with people.
As this year has gone on, I am now at a donation level for readings and consider this all to be like 'internship rates' so to speak.
What this has allowed me to do is really relax, take this pressure off myself and really find out what they want to know and how I can help.  the results of these shifts for myself have been amazing.
I've also completely changed how I prepare for readings. 
I had, out of concern of the reading being 'worth it', spent so much time preparing - another reason part of me didn't want to do it.  Then I would have an overwhelming amount of information for a session.
So, I have changed to mainly just sitting with the chart for ...well, I probably spend a couple hours still, intermittent.  I've dropped a lot of the progessions, returns, midpoints, arcs and really try to know the core meaning of the birth chart - through the EA taught here.  also, I've begun to include the planetary nodes, which I will never do without again.

anyway, I hope it is helpful for you to read my own struggles and transformations with doing readings.
Now, with EA - this amazing paradigm, I actually really feel confident and comfortable that I have valuable insights to help.

Blessings,
Bradley
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stephen
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« Reply #9 on: May 16, 2010, 12:38 PM »

Yet I am extremely sensitive to the harm that one can cause another (perhaps this is ego error?).

Hi Ellen and All,

  What a great thread...thanks for the viewpoints of actual Astologers!  I am not an Astrologist(!), however I just wanted to present the way that I see this...it might provide value.  I also do not want to harm anyone with my input, so I always try: "'better less than more".  I am currently working in network security, but sometimes people come to me 'to talk things out.'  More often lately, interestingly...

  I try to be a really good listener and see what they are saying from their own point of view.  I try to draw out of them what the solution is, for many times they seem to know it intuitively.  Lately, since learning from EA, I always suggest patience with their own self as it is a process.  I don't mention astrological symbols, since no one asks for that.  I am reading books on counseling technique and process right now, since I am certain that my intuitive skills need improvement and refinement.  I am praying that if it is appropriate for my path, I learn how to be of positive help to others.  I try to support their self-image and try not to undermine their own sense of stability.  I sometimes suggest that they might try to see themself as a character in a novel, and what would they like that character to achieve?  I think that this promotes objectively without making it personal (it becomes a game).  Sometimes, I ask them to simply 'flip sentances' as a game, such as: 'He is hurting me' becomes 'I am hurting him' just to see what it sounds/feels like (more possible objectivity).  But it always depends on the person who is talking to me, what is their need?...in other words, what do they want?  A shoulder to cry on, simply an ear for a moment, venting without feedback, validation that someone will listen to them, or...an actual solution?

  Trust that God'dess will speak through you if you don't have your own agenda, and sincerely want to help.

  I am in no hurry to be 'doing Astrology', and mostly likely will not actually attempt to 'hang out a shingle' until near my second Saturn Return (I am 47).  Before I do that, as stated previously in this thread, I will certainly post a sign that I will give free readings to anyone who is interested.  To that end, I am starting to minimize family budget outlay (where possible) so that money will be available for the transition.  


  This is just the path that I am following.  If anyone sees errors in my process, please let me know...

Blessings,
Stephen
« Last Edit: May 16, 2010, 12:40 PM by stephen » Logged
Elen
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« Reply #10 on: May 16, 2010, 02:29 PM »

I understand the fear of causing harm. I feel it almost all the time. Though, it would seem that any human activity, in any field, contains a potentiality of causing damages. So, the question for me becomes if I am meant to do this or that type of work. And then, how to avoid the existing possibility of causing harm.


Hi Gonzalo,

I wanted to thank you for the above words and then the following description you gave of your process in preparing for a reading.  I have struggled a lot in this regard.  On the one hand, I've wanted to spend a lot of time preparing, for the very reasons you identify.  On the other hand, I feel spent when I'm done and as though I am just reciting what I've prepared and not really energetically present in the moment with the person.  In reflecting on your post and on the inner and outer experiences and insights I have been having lately, I am coming to understand that a significant part of the issue, for me, is one of orientation: being the authority, as Rad so insightfully pointed out, vs. desiring to to know God more deeply and from there being of genuine service.  I alluded to this in my prior post.  What I am beginning to understand is that the "spent" feeling is a result of authority orientation.  It is also the result of a misunderstanding of what "practice" is.  The goal is not to be someone, to have a role in society, to have a place, to be recognized, to have the answers, etc. etc.  The goal is to know God more deeply and to be of genuine service.  This authority orientation I have had has also had the effect of laziness in me - relying on my "gifts" (whatever those may be in the moment in question), rather than studying deeply. This has always bothered me and I have been absolutely stumped in my life as to how to truly enter into a field of study or work. Yesterday I was working on the Practice Chart assignment and I did my usual thing, going with the flow of my impressions.  I'm not knocking this outright.  But if you haven't put in the real work, the flow can only go so deep.  After my 1st draft, I seemed to have a sense about this and thought to look at the 10 assignment chart questions for the DVD course and possibly use these as a guide for the Practice Chart assignment.  The 1st question is to look at the natal position of Pluto IN DETAIL.  To do this before going further.  How can you understand the "flow" if you have not understood Pluto IN DETAIL?  Then SN.  Then ruler of SN etc.  And how can you put the appropriate effort into that if you are not correctly oriented to the work - as something inward and deepening, rather than outward and show-offy.  Thanks for your post Gonzalo, and to everyone else who has posted here.

Ellen

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Elen
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« Reply #11 on: May 16, 2010, 02:31 PM »

Thank you for sharing that with us- I have gone through that same emotional shift as well. For a long time (in fact while Saturn was crossing into my first house) I actually gave up my business entirely and stopped being an astrologer- i was identifying with "how much i dont know" or "how spiritually, emotionally, socially unadept I am- not fit to give readings". I created all these excuses to prove that "I am not good enough/ centered enough/ it's too intellectual etc.... and therefore astrology isn't for me." But it hit me like a ton of bricks this past winter- it isn't for me! I get to be of service, and THE MORE I UNDERSTAND EA, THE MORE I CAN BE OF SERVICE. Now I truly do feel gratitude! And I know that I do help people.
 
The old feelings of wanting to not do any more astrology come up often, and I'm learning that it usually happens when I strive too much to understand something, and then become overwhelmed/disillusioned. Instead of taking it easy and appreciating the mystery.

ari moshe

Thank you so much for this, Ari.

Ellen
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Gonzalo
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« Reply #12 on: May 17, 2010, 10:13 PM »

Hi Ellen,

Thanks so much for your post. I liked what you wrote.

"On the one hand, I've wanted to spend a lot of time preparing, for the very reasons you identify.  On the other hand, I feel spent when I'm done and as though I am just reciting what I've prepared and not really energetically present in the moment with the person".

(...)

"the "spent" feeling is a result of authority orientation.  It is also the result of a misunderstanding of what "practice" is.  The goal is not to be someone, to have a role in society, to have a place, to be recognized, to have the answers, etc. etc.  The goal is to know God more deeply and to be of genuine service."

(...)

"how can you put the appropriate effort into that if you are not correctly oriented to the work - as something inward and deepening, rather than outward and show-offy."


Personally I don’t feel spent because of studying. I do feel spent because of feelings of inadequacy and guilt. I feel spent for feeling I need to justify myself for so many shortcomings, real and imagined. I feel spent because of feeling not prepared, not good enough. Sometimes the motivation to study in excess is rooted in such feelings.

I think sometimes it is not easy to discriminate between being actually show-offy or authoritative, and the feeling you get when trying to avoid show-offy-ness. If your are trying to avoid such attitudes, the inner awareness that you have whenever they manifest is of course hyper-critical (Virgo).With Pluto in Virgo such critical inner awareness can operate even if those undesired attitudes haven’t appeared at all: because of memories of prior orientations of the Soul. Further, with Pluto in Virgo self-criticism can produce or attract a critical feedback. It can also permeate how you receive or perceive whatever feedback. This way, because of the vibration of self-criticism which can be merciless, you can create situations in which the self-criticism seems to be externally confirmed, even if is not rooted in actual “imperfections”. And with Pluto in Virgo you can then get to the point of trying to justify yourself before others, which at some point, can get to really start believing that you are guilty. This is one crazy stuff I am trying to get rid of.

Your post caused a paradoxical effect on me, because you begun by saying that too much study is not deep enough for you in face of the consultation situation, and then you ended by saying that it is needed to study deeper.

With Pluto in Virgo there is always something wrong, something in need of improvement. And this interrupts and short-circuits everything. Though, to find that which is the ultimate point of comparison, it is necessary to find inner emptiness (Virgo). And finding inner emptiness requires that compulsive self-criticism be lowered. Personally I feel the desire of being perfect is not getting me anywhere, and that, on the contrary, it is undermining my deeper purposes.

I liked that apparent paradox in your post. And, I think you are right. In my case, too much study is rooted in insecurity, perpetuated by the inner feeling that “perfection” would be better than being emotionally present. And, of course, being emotionally present is necessary to find God.

This is all I can say by now, but I’ll be reflecting on this and will come back with more when I find something else to say.

Thank you for bringing this topic Ellen, and for what you shared in this post.

God Bless you,

Gonzalo
   
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Elen
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« Reply #13 on: May 18, 2010, 02:30 PM »

Hi Bradley,

I so appreciated your bringing up the whole money side of things and sharing your own process and resolutions in this regard.  This has been a nagging issue for me and part of what stops me.  When I have done readings for friends, they always want to pay, but I have felt extremely uncomfortable with that given that I am really just learning.  Yet at the same time, they feel uncomfortable because they know I've invested a lot of time and energy in it.  The donation idea just might work.  And I think I'd even say, don't pay me at the session.  Think about it for awhile.  If you truly felt you received value, contribute what you feel honors that value.  This part's key, because I don't really want to receive money for something that has not been valuable for someone, and I know there have been some readings where this has been, or at least has seemed to have been, true.  Well, it's an evolving process.  But what you wrote has unleashed some possibility for me.

Thank you!
Ellen
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Elen
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« Reply #14 on: May 18, 2010, 02:34 PM »

What I just realized reading these posts is that it's my responsibility in fact to not take them on. Their words are saying "i want a reading" but their soul is saying "i dont have any interest in learning about my evolutionary dynamics". It's my job to listen to their soul as best as I can.

ari moshe

Yes, this is so helpful, Ari.  Thank you.  Rad & Pam talked about showing people the door.  And I think that's absolutely right.  But I find myself feeling uncomfortable doing that, like I'm being unkind or something, or I've promised something and now I'm not going to follow through on it. 

Things to think about.  Growth to be done.

Peace,
Ellen
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