Using more than 35 years of experience as a therapist I offer private counseling sessions for those who are seeking a more holistic approach to therapy. During these many years of experience I have used astrology as one tool to help a client gain deeper insights into their basic needs and help them expand their understanding of themselves. Also, over the last decade or so I have been a consultant to therapists who also wish to advise their clients in a deeper, more holistic manner. In both my practice and my work as a consultant to therapists, I emphasize that the knowledge base and skill set of the therapist must combine three seemingly different fields into one integrated one – psychology, philosophy, and spirituality. At one time, these three fields were integrated, so now it is very helpful to return to the wisdom of the past, while also using the knowledge we have today.
Astrological counseling is not a ‘reading.’ The general public has many different associations about astrology. Most think of it solely as something you read in a newspaper telling you what your day will be like based on your Sun-sign. But, there are also more people today who know that astrology can be much more than that. Many go to astrologers to get readings seeking to learn more about what is likely to happen in the next months or year. The fact is though that astrology can be much deeper than this as well. By deeper I mean the process of revealing the layers of meaning of one’s nature. To understand one’s chart, the layers of our own being must be revealed one step at a time.
A single astrological reading or consultation can be very beneficial and for many people it can also be a helpful introduction to seeing the value of astrology. It can give us insight into problems we are facing, what the present transits are telling us about how they can be worked with or solved and many other things that are covered on this website. But it also needs to be stated that a single consultation cannot go into the kind of depth that astrology can offer. First of all, only a small amount of material can be covered and understood in an hour or so. Our birth chart actually reveals a multi-layered realm that can be explored by each person through their entire lifetime. It seems that the more we understand, the more will be revealed which for some, can create a growing spiral of awareness that leads to enhanced states of consciousness and a significantly better way of operating in the world. Astrology and psychology, when used properly, fit together hand in glove.
Goals of Astrological Counseling
Discovering one’s life purpose – astrology can help us discover our life purpose. Actually, this is not expressed properly. No one can suddenly discover their life purpose. The term ‘life purpose’ is not meant to refer merely to one’s career or family life. What we can do, however, is to begin to sense that a purpose might exist for us. Developing that sense is the beginning of an evolutionary process which might lead us to feeling a need to make an effort to discover what it is. This is what Joseph Campbell referred to as the ‘Heroes journey’ that leads to the ‘finding of one’s Bliss.’ The notion of ‘Bliss’ is meant here to convey a deep inner sense of knowing why we are here and what we must do to promote and actively pursue this aim.
Acceptance of Oneself – one of the most helpful aspects of astrology is the discovery that it makes possible for us to see that we are who we are which includes aspects of our personality that we are here to develop. When I refer to acceptance I do not mean we can avoid taking responsibility. No, we must do that or else we would not learn and grow. But when we do accept our self, we pave the way for being able to have a positive outlook that then leads to openness to change. It is hard to explain the power of this, but I have seen it many times.
Identifying the developmental phase one is in – One of the first areas to identify is the developmental phase that the person is in at the present stage of their life. We will work together to understand what each phase asks of us. Part of the maturation process includes improving the way we approach and handle the inevitable crises of life. Are we able to work through our problems and challenges with a degree of equanimity. Do we regard crisis as an opportunity? The famous psychiatrist, M. Scott Peck, often asked his clients to recognize that life isn’t easy and that it was never supposed to be easy. We are here to learn and we do so through our experiences, many of which are truly painful. There is pain in life as the Buddha addressed 2,500 years ago. But can we find a way to live our life in a way where we face the ‘pains’ of life but, as Pema Chodron offered, without suffering?
Viewing crisis as an opportunity – Not only this, but it is crisis that is the primary way on which we have the opportunity to see what the ‘difficult’ experiences can show us about our unfulfilled potentials. They may be leading us to a future we have not yet been able to imagine. One of the great values of the Astro-Counseling Process is that we can learn to USE crisis to become aware of the many potentials indicated by our birth chart and discover ways to actualize them. This is difficult to do in just one ‘reading.’ It sometimes takes time to see and ‘feel’ what the amazing possibilities that we can, with patient effort, learn to develop.
Discovering what is in the way – This brings us to an important part of the Astro-Counseling process. We often ask ourselves, “Why do we have trouble knowing more about our potentialities and being able to actualize them?” The counseling process helps us also discover what is in the way (resistances) of perceiving the obstacles and then be able to release them. This is often the heart of any counseling process, including Astro-counseling.
To reveal the multi-layered nature of a person’s psyche – Self-understanding is something that can help us in so many ways, but we are often overwhelmed by the monumental nature of the task. The Astro-counseling process can assist us by gradually disclosing the layers of our psyche in steps so that we learn more about ourselves without being confused or overwhelmed.