Friday, February 15, 2013

Purposeful Astrology (A Map for Everyday Living)

Since astrology existed in ancient times and has an aura of mystery around it, not to mention mysticism, it has garnered a esoteric reputation. But on the other side of the coin, astrology for some people has taken on a pop psychological approach or it plays the role of a daily oracle of hope in the form of horoscopes. While both situations have advantages, the tools of astrology are lost in both cases and we miss out on opportunities to map our lives through planetary transits or to fully understand our selves via our natal charts.

But for anyone who enjoys Joseph Campbell's exploration of myths, legends and archetypes, astrology can provide the path to bliss in our own lives.  A common complaint by people is that they don't know their life path or even what brings them bliss.  This is because these people have chosen to live in boxes built by their parents, peers, or society in general.  It's impossible to follow your bliss if you don't know what it is, but you can find out what it is by unlocking the symbols in your natal chart.  No one goes on a long journey these days without a map. And even when I move to a new city or town, I rely on maps to get me around until I understand the terrain. 

A natal chart represents maps of our souls. These maps lead us to our core and we truly can know ourselves by unlocking the symbols and exploring the archetypes that make up who we are.  And don't even worry about the transiting planets until you have a deeper understanding of your natal chart.  If you are just starting out with astrology, forget the charts of your friends, family members and celebrities, and learn about what makes you tick by studying your natal chart.  I believe too that the exercise of studying your chart will move you past any denial you have in regard to yourself.  I also think when you learn about your strengths and vulnerabilities and see what makes you sing and what makes you hurt, you will develop compassion for yourself then later self-love.

I'm not talking about reading a natal chart to gain bragging rights or to boasts about any important configurations or aspects you find in your chart.  I'm talking about mining a chart for gifts and for directives that lead you on to your life path.  Don't get hung up on squares between Mars and Uranus or even a Grand Square with the most powerful or dynamic planets (though I do sympathize if you have a Grand Square in your chart).  But I also know that the dynamics of that square provides opportunity for extreme growth and wisdom which you'll teach to others later in your life.

triple Aries
I have seen books with Practical Astrology in the title and I think for most people, we need to find practicality and everyday uses for astrology.  Once you learn your natal chart on a deeper level, then it's time to follow the transits.  Transits tell us when to back off and retreat as well as, when to move forward and remove obstacles from the path.  Think of transits as traffic lights and when you have the green light speed ahead like a triple Aries. Go, go, go!

But the other thing you'll learn is that as we move around this wheel of fortune, and as the planets move around our chart, life won't always go smoothly.  It's not your fault so don't blame yourself when transiting Pluto squares your Sun and DIVORCE lights up in your brain.  Life happens even if life events seem irrational at the time. When Jupiter rolls around usually life goes smoothly, but we might grow too complacent, same with Venus.  When Pluto or Saturn come knocking on the door, it feels like Beethoven's fate--duh, duh, duh, duuuuh.

And there are some things to remember during the challenging transits.

Never blame yourself for life events, but know that on some level you attracted those events to you.

Take responsibility for only what is yours and trust that others will eventually take responsibility for their part when we stop enabling bad behavior or defeatist attitudes

Practice self-love and self-honoring

Don't beat yourself up when life challenges you, nurture yourself instead

When you feel exhausted, stop and take a nap or if you need to sleep for an entire day

Breathe deeply and drink plenty of clean water

Instead of asking "why me?" ask "what's next?" As in what small step can I take now to relieve my suffering or get me back on track?

Find out how long the transits will last (with Pluto up to 3 years)

Then look for relief transits in the chart, such as Jupiter or Venus transits or if your energy is low, look at Mars transits for the next several months

The Chariot, moving forward
And finally remember that the flowing aspects come so easily to us that we would never redeem those gifts without tension caused by squares or oppositions.  Grand Trines for instance light us up, but t-crosses push us forward and as we deal with those tensions, we develop new gifts and gain wisdom. I'm fortunate to have two Grand Trines in my natal chart and a mutable T-Cross with Saturn/Moon, Uranus/Pluto and Mars at the apex.  And yes, this T-Cross has nearly destroyed me a few times, but thankfully I found relief in other sections of my chart.  And remember this, some of the most successful people who have walked this planet, had challenging aspects in their charts that gave them the necessary push to pursue their dreams, as opposed to lounge on a couch with a bag of chips watching television reruns.

There's a time and place for horoscopes and esoteric astrology, but why not unleash the power of the planets in your daily life? Consult the planets for important but also daily decisions.  Just don't become superstitious in the process or give all your power away to Pluto or Saturn.

If you need help with reading your astrological map, I give consultations in Bellingham, Washington and surrounding areas. 

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