Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Astrology Is Not Fortune Telling



I get more than a few questions from people, particularly clients who are getting a reading from me, that make it sound like they think I can tell them exactly what’s going to happen in their life and when. I have heard the “when am I going to have children?” question on multiple occasions, as well as the classic ones about love like “am I going to meet the love of my life this year?” or “when will I get married?” And I give the same response to them basically every time: I don’t know.

That is not what I think astrology is about. It’s not fortune telling. It’s not looking into a crystal ball and telling someone their future. I think that a birth chart can tell someone how to best move ahead into the future by rising above their flaws, developing self-awareness, living up to their full potential, etc. I think that a transit chart, which is probably the closest thing to making predictions in astrology, can gauge the ways a person can grow and evolve through certain experiences that come their way. But, in spite of it all, how you deal with what happens is what really matters. As above, so below. Even though astrology, I think, is a way of the higher force of the Universe speaking to us, the Universe helps those who help themselves. We cannot passively or blindly rely on our birth chart or transit chart to tell us what our lives will be like.

This could also be why I’ve always preferred to do transit charts based on the transits that are happening in the present, rather than doing them for months into the future. The way I practice astrology is giving people the tools and the resources to better themselves. If you are looking for answers to the unknown in astrology, I’m really not going to be able to help you that much. I’m always very honest and upfront with my clients about that, even though, if they do pose those kinds of questions to me, I still answer them to the best of my ability. Again, we can see signs in the birth chart. Placements represent patterns that can manifest in the future. The sign or planet(s) in your 5th House can tell you a lot about what your children could turn out like, personality-wise, while whatever’s in your 7th House can describe your marriage partner and what kind of dynamic will define the marriage.

So, yes, there are general elements of “prediction” in the chart. But, that shouldn’t be taken too far and too literally. I don’t think anyone can tell you exactly what will happen to you unless they are a genuine clairvoyant. I’m highly intuitive but I’m not a psychic and I will never pretend to be. The thing that I find a bit irritating is that this is the thing that can discredit astrology to some non-believers, as if astrologers are just spouting off bullshit that may not even prove to be true. For the sake of my own integrity, I will never do this. I could never tell you that, yes, you will end up having two children or that, no, you won’t be marrying the love of your life after all. Not only is this fatalistic but I just feel like – nothing personal to anyone – there are seeds of dishonesty in that. Unless you have a true gift for seeing specific events in the future, that have consistently proven to be true, you have no business telling people any of that. Because what if it never happens?

I feel like this is the lingering effect of old-school astrology from centuries ago, back when it was still seen as witchcraft and sorcery and when people were far more superstitious and less rational and reliant on science. This is a tone that still remains, to a large degree, in Vedic astrology, which I have never followed because of that. If want to scare the hell out of yourself or someone else, look up profiles of a traditionally “negative” placement on some Vedic astrology site. Or, if you have a twisted sense of humor like me, you’ll probably get a good laugh out of it. Between my Scorpio Moon, my Venus in the 8th, and my Saturn and Neptune in the 12th, I should be a serial killer, a male prostitute, a prisoner or a mental patient (depending on my mood), and a penniless alcoholic by now. But, I promise you, I’m none of those things. Yet, if I read all of those harsh descriptions as a teenager and seriously thought they would predict my adult self, maybe they would.

This is why astrology does not predict the future. We are all individuals with free will and as powerful as this study is, it does not completely overwhelm our free will. We choose what to do with our placements. We choose how to handle our transits. If you want to have children, start trying to have children. If you want to get married to a certain kind of individual, make that a part of your value system or your “list” if you will (just as long as your list isn’t ridiculous) and you will attract that kind of relationship partner or marriage partner. If you want your finances to be in a certain place or you want a certain career, go for it. Don’t wait for astrology or an astrologer to give you permission to pursue these things or to tell you that they will happen. Do whatever is in your power to make them happen, all while using astrology as a guide toward greater clarity or empowerment throughout the process.

It's also why I’ve learned to not be too obsessed with transits. It can be all too easy to not only “act out” the transit you think you should be having but to anticipate something terrible happening when it really won’t at all. On the flip side, some of the toughest transits can be the ones that blindside you, like when Saturn was conjunct my Moon a few years ago, which I was completely unprepared for and which I didn’t fully understand the effects of until I looked back on them. Transits are meant to be experienced and are really best understood in hindsight, once you have had the full experience and went through it without much self-consciousness.

Now, telling someone what their current transit feels like is different because it can help shine a light of awareness on what’s already happening and allow the person to work their way through it. That’s important and makes astrology a very useful tool. Still, even then, you can’t possibly know exactly how the transit will unfold. But, telling someone in advance exactly what’s going to happen to them when transiting Jupiter will be square their Venus at the end of the year can be sort of problematic because not only are they waiting for the axe to fall but it can become a self-fulfilling prophecy, causing them to will the terrible mess you predicted into being.

Things like this can really screw with people’s heads, if the astrologer is not careful. So can this cold-blooded idea of putting the chart ahead of the individual and forcing them to fit into your ideas of what their life is or will be because of a certain placement. “Oh, you have the Moon in Aquarius? Ah, well, your mother was always cold and didn’t hug you enough and when you become a mother, your kids will feel unappreciated and left out in the cold by you.” It’s a slightly traumatizing thing to say to someone. Also, it’s quite ignorant. There are multiple ways a placement can manifest. And there’s a difference between someone not acting like someone who has a certain placement, which could be a sign that it’s not actually their placement, and someone relating to that placement and displaying its traits but not in the exact language or scenarios in which it’s described.

Astrology is something that I think can be proven through observations and intuitive understanding. It is not a cold, hard science, driven by facts and nothing but facts. Yet, just because it’s intuitive doesn’t mean that there is not a logic to it because there is. To me, the only thing I can tell you is what’s in the chart. Whatever is in your chart describes things about your nature, personality, potential, and purpose (birth chart) or circumstances, opportunities, and challenges that are arising in the present (transit chart). To me, that’s something that I can reach out and touch because there’s a system in place that helps me tell you all of that. However, I can’t tell you if your boyfriend will finally propose or if you’ll be able to make enough money to get out of debt.

And, honestly, I don’t think I should. “Knowing” is something that brings safety. Yet, personally, I’m not into the idea of destroying life’s mysteries. Maybe it’s my 12th House Saturn talking. Sometimes, in some way, we have to walk through life blind. It can be scary or difficult but we end up becoming better and stronger when we face the unknown and come out on the other side, realizing it’s not that bad and, maybe, it’s better that we didn’t know everything that was going to happen.

7 comments:

  1. Wow Wayman! This is such a great article, and I will share it (as I do with so many of your articles). I've been thinking about these things alot lately, thinking about how to I should go about transits in general. How to relate to them and so on. I've been so obsessed with my Saturn return in the house where my NN is and where Pluto will be transiting at the same time. Wondering how I should prepare for it (and its not even happening in my near future).

    Your words instantly help me to relax and put those worries a side. Since I dont know how the transit will manifest there is really nothing I can completely prepare for, and you totally helped me realise that now.

    All the best/Anna

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  2. Love it! Everytime I've ever done a chart for someone I've always told them "it's a tool, to help you look at yourself". I think all psychology is like that. I know comparing psychology is a stretch, considering how scientific it is, however, I do believe that humanity wants to help itself which makes it comparable. I am relating to the myers brigs 16 personality types, or other books that contain these charts that have allowed the book author (usually someone with a PhD) be able to find similarities in the patients personality so that they or someone else may aid in treatment for the patient or user of the book. People like to figure out these puzzle pieces of individuals and make categories so that a person or a doctor treating a patient can have an idea or a GUIDELINE of where those puzzle pieces fit. It reminds me (again, I know I've said this before) of the doshas in ayurvedic medicine or the elements in traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) that we embody. These are all tools to help the user understand where the healing may be needed, or can take place. These tools have a long standing history with their associations and associates, however, they are not opposed to change due to the free will of the user. I think the stars have given us some solid reoccurring patterns that have been worth noting. over the last 15+ years I've been attentively looking at and studying other humans. When I was in massage therapy school, we learn so much about TCM and honestly I feel like it's so similar, because of how you interpret the elements within a person's body. It's fascinating to me and I use it all for knowledge sake. It's funny, there have been times, that I have felt those elements or astrological chart characteristics in the physical body as I'm doing body work with someone. A fun example of myself I'd like to share with you is: according to TCM I am predominantly fire (I'm not kidding, it's weird and crazy, however I have been told by a TCM doc of acupuncture and I have interpreted it in other ways through my own studies). In astrology I a predominatly air (Gemini: rising and jupiter, libra: sun and mercury, and Aquarius moon) my only fire sign is in aries (Mars) which sits in the 11th house. It was so amazing when that lady the Dr of acupuncture was talking to me she said "oh your definitely fire" and the last thing that really made her decide was because I was sharing so many contacts with her, I was helping her get socially connected in my city because she was new here (aries in 11th house or TCM?!). To make this all even more interesting to me, when my husband and I divorced, right around the time I learned I was FIRE (TCM), I found out he was water,obviously my OPPOSITE, and something I am lacking in my astrological CHART AND my TCM elements. I have attracted SO many water friends. For every reason or part of me that missed my X husband I must have gained 10 water dominate friends that cradled me and soothed my emotional heart ach. It was and still is indeed a journey! Blessed be!

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  3. yes.....transits are best looked at in hindsight. and astrology can unfold in so many ways. we have to be careful as astrologers to not be too fatalistic.

    like mars- pluto contacts... could be a serial killer...could be the greatest fighter in the world!(Bruce Lee and Muhammad Ali had this . ) your chart are the tools. but you make your own life. loving this blog. your insights....wow

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    1. Lol, same thing with me, venus mars pluto conjunct in sagittarius, mars pluto alone has been described as potentially abusive. I hate to see what could be said about this aspect

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  4. Although modern western astrology is very non-fatalistic, I still catch myself at times when I seem to be proving the negative aspects my chart 'right'.
    How I think is, a natal chart is like the stats/ability screen of a RPG: you're high at this, you're low at that, you easily gravitate towards this and you have a tendency to do that. Now with time, training and a bit of help, say, your healer 'chart' (a healer usually has the lowest health points) can rack up as many health points as a tank (a tank has the most HP).
    It will be more difficult, you'll see other people progress faster than you, but the actual realization of it depends on you TRYING in the first place! Aren't we lucky then, to have a chart that plots out these things for us, so we know where to start?
    One of my favorite quote about astrology is that "the planets impel, but do not compel." Impel means to just provide a strong motive to do something, but compel drives it to actually making it happen. Compulsion is in our own hand, and is our own decision.
    There's no such thing as good or bad anything- everything on this earth has a flip side. We just need to know how to see it. Mars in Cancer is supposed to be one of the worst: over-sensitive, manipulative, argumentative for the heck of it- and I know it's true, I've seen it play out like that myself. But, when you take that same energy and apply it in a different direction, say, to protect someone, I feel it becomes the sign of a real hero. Instead of being destructive, it becomes protective. It is difficult to channel things that way, but once you learn how to do it once, it really becomes a wonderful asset.

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  5. This has nothing to do with this post, but, could you put a search bar on your blog? I find myself constantly looking for articles on your page. I know that I can Google them, but it would help a lot to be able to search your page. :) Thanks.

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  6. Thanks Wayman, you don't know how much this has enlightened me. I've almost given up on astrology very recently because of the fears that surrounded me by predictions of astrologers, say, in Astro.com. I was very close to regretting learning a bit of it because it just made me miserable.

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