If you've never had an astrology reading before, you might wonder what all the fuss is about? I mean, what could you actually learn by someone telling you something about yourself if you already know yourself?! Well the answer is a long one. While there are many crafty astrologers out there who can "describe you" before they even meet you - solely based on your birth time - there is a lot more to astrology than character description. For instance, check out this long list of other applications for astrology:
- Vocational or Career Advice
- Medical procedure timing
- Medical information
- Business timing of product launches, start ups, and negotiations
- Understanding unconscious motivations driving you from past life experiences
- Learning what drives your strengths and shortcomings
- Learning about your vulnerable "blind spots"
- Timing to buy a new house, move, or start a new job
- Learning how to better get along with and understand your partner (whether a romantic or business partner)
- Learn what types of experiences might be amplified by living in a particular city
- Learn how to best approach difficulties signified by any current planetary movements (transits)
- Learn how to capitalize the most on opportunities signified by any current planetary movements (transits)
So let's explore some of these benefits of astrological counseling in more detail.
Vocational or Career AstrologyAstrology can help you better understand your strengths and weaknesses, gifts, talents and shortcomings. It can help direct you to the best arenas to make money, sure, but it can also suggest the best arenas for job satisfaction and fulfillment. Choosing a job based on a vocational horoscope is a complex process of analysis that involves taking into account one's character, one's strengths and aptitudes, and what makes one feel happy or fulfilled. All of this adds up to a set of career archetypes or options that work for you. A great career astrologer can point you in the right direction if you're confused, or if you're considering a career change.
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Medical AstrologyMedical astrology can be used to examine the best dates for medical procedures including surgeries, and also for changing medication. It is tricky for medical astrologers to practice in the United States, because only doctors are legally allowed to treat or prescribe. These same draconian laws also make it challenging for your massage therapist to work things with talking about that lower back pain you're having. But we won't go into politics here. Suffice to say, that your medical astrologer may have to use cryptic language when working with you to "educate you about medical astrology". In the end, you are left with more information that will help you make the best decision regarding any proposed treatment by your primary health care provider.
Long ago, we became aware of the best times for surgeries in order to avoid excessive bleeding, and insure a good result. Doctors have lost sight of this information, so it's a great idea to check with a medical astrologer before scheduling a major surgery. Even many scientists are aware of the statistics that more medical procedures run into trouble during eclipses. So check those dates with a VERY qualified and EXPERIENCED medical astrologer. This is your health, so do your research well, and ask many questions before scheduling a reading.
Medical astrology can also be of help if your current set of symptoms is baffling your primary care doctors. It's always worth checking in with a great medical astrologer to read the "planetary weather" in case there might be an area of the body that the docs are just not noticing.
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Business AstrologyPutting the words business and astrology together is a bit like putting the words scientific and psychics together, right? Astonishingly to many business-minded folks, astrology might be the missing link between success and failure. For instance, did you know that most businesses that incorporate while the moon is "void of course" will not succeed in the long run? Not only that, but there are times when a product launch would be great, and other times during which a great business astrologer will be able to alert you to possible challenges. If you have the flexibility to adjust the launch date, wouldn't you rather wait 2 weeks, if you knew that it would make your launch a success?
Business astrology can also help you get the most out of your team by learning about your own leadership skills. It can help you understand how to best work with co-workers. And it can help you plan the best time to ask for a raise or promotion. Seek out a qualified and experienced business astrologer when you need help in these areas. Don't be afraid to ask for your astrologer's track record with success beforehand.
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Past Life Astrology & Evolutionary AstrologyAre you aware that we all all unconscious motivations that drive our present choices? A past life or karmic astrologer can help you sort out what may have lead to some of those hard-to-change habits and repetitive experiences. Brian Weiss, the famous MD and past life regression therapist has case histories packed with successful regressions that lead to the healing of chronic problems that appear to have been related to past life traumas, somehow held in the body and psyche. Understanding what drives these unconscious motivations can create a liberating feeling of freedom, and can connect you with a deeper sense of life purpose.
Don't believe in past lives? You don't have to in order to receive the benefits of a past life reading. A branch of astrology called Evolutionary Astrology seeks to help clients by tapping into this deep material and bringing it into the client's awareness. Some say it could be too easy to "make up" past life stories in an astrology reading, and that there is no way to verify the "truth". How can you tell the difference? The best way is to notice how you feel during and after the reading. Does the reading resonate with you? Do you notice changes when you check in with how your body is feeling? Or does it seem to "not fit"? You are always the best authority on the subject, so always run any information through your own system before committing on a new path or a new direction.
Again, as with any astrologer, get references and ask what you can expect from the reading beforehand.
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Psychological AstrologyMost people are familiar with character astrology, or the kind of astrology that describes one's personality. This kind of astrology can be really fun. But just how useful is it? And have you ever thought about how much you're limiting yourself by using personality-based astrology for stuck behavior? For instance, how many times have you said "I'm just that way because I'm a Gemini (or Aquarius, or Taurus...)?" Don't feel bad - we've all done it! But astrology holds a much greater promise: it can help us understand ourselves better so that we can make positive change. This is the domain of psychological astrology.
Psychological astrology can help you learning about your vulnerable "blind spots" - those places in your personality or life that always seem to get you into trouble. A psychological astrologer may actually have a therapy degree or credential in addition to astrological training. If you are working with a challenging psychological diagnosis, it is recommended that you seek out someone like this, who is qualified to work with your particular health issue. However, for many folks, a great psychological astrologer with natural counseling skills can provide helpful guidance, insight, and support.
Many psychological astrologers will work with clients over several sessions, or longer periods of time, to address complex issues. Change isn't always easy, and it's a good idea to have as much support as you can in the process.
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Traditional AstrologyTiming is everything. There are many astrological techniques that professional astrologers have been using for hundreds (if not thousands) of years to select the best times for every moment in life - from planting seeds to getting married. Whether you are planning to buy or sell a home, start a new job, have a baby or move to a new city, a qualified astrologer can help you choose the date. Your astrologer may cast what is called an "electional" which is a chart or horoscope based on the projected time of your new endeavor.
I once used an electional chart to sell a house, and disregarded my real estate agent's demand to list the house on Sunday. Instead I waited until Wednesday, which was the date my astrologer and I selected as the best date. In fact, this date was so good, she recommended that I be ready for a very quick closing. Boy was she right on target - I found a buyer for my house in 3 days and closed 2 weeks later! Although my real estate agent was still skeptical, he never said another word about it.
Ask your prospective astrologer beforehand if they have any success stories about the type of event you are presenting for an electional reading, in order to gauge if they are best astrologer for your situation.
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Relationship Astrology (Synastry)Relationship astrology is probably the second most popular kind of astrology - right behind Sun Sign, or personality astrology. However, not many people approach relationship astrology in the most beneficial way. Never let an astrologer tell you who or how to love. You are always the best authority on the matter. We are drawn to people for a reason - sometimes for spiritual connection, and sometimes to learn valuable (and hard) lessons. But most of us can probably think of one of those "hard lessons" won that we wouldn't trade for anything, because it taught us just what we needed to know at the time. We can look back at those partners and thank them with grace. And you never know when such a partner had a karmic debt to you and was actually repaying a favor!
So what makes a relationship astrology great if I can't tell when and where I'm going to meet the perfect person? A gifted relationship astrologer will actually describe to you what your partners strengths and weaknesses are, and vice versa, so that you can better work together. A relationship is a partnership - remember?! So in a synastry reading you'll learn how to make the best of the relationship. Every relationship has challenges and ease. You're learning how best to balance the particular mix you have with your partner.
By the way, relationship readings aren't just for romantic partners. You can have a synastry reading with any 2 charts - you and your boss, your child, even your pet!
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Transit AstrologyIt's been said a million times, but "as above, so below" accurately describes our relationship with the heavens. Your birth chart or horoscope is a map of the planetary positions relative to the earth at the time you were born. But the planets keep moving! And as they form mathematical angles (remember Geometry?) with the positions they were in when you were born, those angles mark the major events and evolutionary cycles in our lives. Most astrologers will do transit readings or progression readings. Solar return readings fall under this category too. It can be so validating and liberating to find out that the archetypes described by the heavens relate in a meaningful way to your present circumstance.
Transit astrology will help you plan for the future. As you know which cycles are coming, you can bring those energies into your awareness and work with them proactively. Many astrologers believe that if you work with planetary energy in a conscious way, you can avoid some of those situations in which it feels like life is happening TO you instead of WITH you.
Transit astrology can also be used to describe and predict future events. This is perhaps most interesting in the public sphere, which is called Mundane Astrology. Perhaps the best modern example of mundane astrology is Richard Tarnas' book Cosmos and Psyche, in which transits are examined against the backdrop of modern history in detail over the last 500 years or so. This revelatory book will change anyone's mind about the validity of astrology. And the first section of the book will make an optimist of any pessimistic philosopher. A must read.
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Astro*Carto*Graphy or Relocation AstrologyAstrology is endlessly complex. One of its newer innovations is Astro*Carto*Graphy, which was synthesized by the late great Jim Lewis. Astro*Carto*Graphy is actually a specific Relocation Astrology technique, which also includes techniques like Local Space. These techniques are all in service to understanding the way a particular location can have an effect on one's birth chart.
We tend to have a good time on vacation. But if you've traveled a bit, have you ever felt drawn to a certain place, or found that you really "light up" in certain cities? You may be noticing the energies that can be described by astrolocality, or relocation astrology. In certain locations, you will tend to have more of the experience associated with the planetary archetypes that are enhanced for you there.
As you search for the perfect place though, remember you still have a birth chart! You can think of a relocation chart as the permanent transits that you will feel in a particular location. You will still be you even though you may have a "relocated sun in a better position" in Kansas - so don't pack up and move without evaluating your entire circumstance, including your birth chart and current transits.
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It's been said a lot here, but always remember that you know yourself better than anyone. You can get the most out of an astrology reading if you stay connected to your own heart. If what the astrologer is telling you doesn't resonate with you, they are likely wrong (unless of course you know for example that you are always resistant to new ideas!). If what the astrologer says "feels wrong" it probably is. Remember that astrologers are humans with faults - just like you. They've just spent a lot more time studying astrology. So use them for guidance, but ultimately, follow your own heart.
Best wishes on your journey.