As Theodore Roszak noted nearly 30 years ago: “Ultimately no system is any better than the judgment and honesty of those who use it. Wisdom and decency are qualities of people, not of systems.” Astrology is a language, an exquisitely rich cryptographic system, and in all of its sundry specialties (natal, horary, mundane, etc.), layers upon layers of meaning are available to the interpreter. Still, neither the system nor its interpreter can know the deepest workings or capacities of any human being. So, in my experience, what astrology can “do” for anyone depends greatly upon the perspective, understanding, sensitivity, and capacity of the interpreter to integrate myriad complexities and translate them in an effective, understandable way that’s useful to the client and applicable to his/her life.
There’s no way to look at a birth horoscope and know whether the person is male or female; a Buddha or a bulldog; tall or short; straight or gay; black, white, yellow, red, or a multi-cultural mix of all of the above. Neither can we know that being’s level of consciousness. We do need to be aware that the chart itself has an innate “authority” (else why would the client be there?) which is animated by the client’s projections. So, when we work with an individual's chart in a personal consultation, we step into a multivalent environment. Once there, we open a dialogue with the sacred and profane, the conscious as well as disowned and unacknowledged attributes of that being. We are charged with helping the client discover what the chart says about the soul’s best intentions for this incarnation; the ways to resonate consciously with those intentions; and what challenges might be encountered. We go in search of the unique power as well as the special music contained within him or her, and we do so in service to the highest good of that soul and our own. It is a sacred, humbling trust.
Read more: Hadley Fitzgerald: The Problem with Predictions
For me, astrology is, if nothing else, clearly archetypal in nature. That fact both expands, and limits, astrology’s possibilities. It expands by allowing a richness of topics available to be covered, and multiple dimensions or layers of meanings to be discovered. It allows for the practice of many types of astrology, like horary, mundane, evolutionary and psychological, because the meaning to be found is personal, political, as well as collective. People can receive extraordinary insights into both life’s big questions and the somewhat lesser, but perhaps even more practical ones, via astrology.
Read more: Joan Kiley: Archetypal Questions