Feb 14, 2019; updated on Feb 14, 2019
The Gift Of Perspective
Please take a moment to do the following before reading further:
- Take a deep breath in through your nose, drawing the breath from below and around your belly button.
- Hold the breath in briefly.
- Then, release it slowly through your mouth.
- Smile. Yes, even if you don’t feel like it and it feels kind of fake. Smile, and then release any tension you are holding in your body with another belly breath in and out.
- Take one more deep breath, in and out, slow and steady. Smile again.
Now, consider this:
YOU ARE HERE :
- You are an inhabitant on the planet Earth, which is also known as, “The Good Goddess”, “Gaea”, and Terra Mater
- The Good Goddess, Terra Mater, is the 3rd planet from her (relatively young) Sun, which is known as: Sol or Helios
- Our Helios solar system orbits near the galactic center of our slightly warped barred spiral galaxy, which is called The Milky Way
- We are within the minor Orion section (near the Sagittarius and Perseus major arms) of the Milky Way
- Our solar system is estimated to be one of 10 – 100 billion solar systems in our Milky Way galaxy.
- Astronomers now estimate that there are at least two trillion galaxies in the Universe!
- At the galactic center is Sagittarius A, which is near the constellations of Scorpius and Sagittarius.
- Sagittarius A Star, in the Sagittarius A area, is a newly discovered radio source, and is also near the location of what is believed to be a supermassive black hole at the center of our galaxy!
As an artist, I find that when I work on a piece, sometimes I become too close to it, and lose perspective, like a teenager focusing too much on one feature, like a larger nose — losing all perspective on proportion and distance. I find that I have to walk away from a piece I am working on, stand at a distance, look at it upside down, and even put it away for a while in order to see it with fresh eyes, and as it really is. When I do that, then I can appreciate it, and know what it needs, or that it is done.
Perspective can give us new glimpses of reality we hadn’t considered, which can actually shift our mindset and cycle of thoughts and habits. Perspective can give us space to breathe, imagine, and create anew. Perspective can release undue pressures, and refocus our attention on facts of core, maybe overlooked, importance. Perspective can help us to realize that our minds too often fixate and replay old thoughts and stories without taking in enough of what is happening, what is real now, and the scale of our experience across the dimensions of time and space.
Perspective can inspire and wake us up a bit.
While astronomy is able to give us that amazing perspective on the grand scale, as demonstrated at the beginning of this article, astrology does too, just in different ways.
Symbolism and mythology are, and have always been, a basic foundation of astrology worldwide, in all the different schools, cultures, eras, and approaches. It has also always been a way to frame the spiritual and symbolic interpretation of our life experience on Earth.
The deeper meaning found in astrology asserts that we matter, and have a right — a place (birthright) in the scheme of things in this universe, whether we have power, wealth, recognition, privilege, or anything else or not. This is fertile ground for self-exploration and mysticism.
The 12 Zodiac signs, used in western astrology charts, are largely rooted in names and stories that come from Greek, Roman, and even Babylonian and Egyptian mythology and symbols.
The birth chart is the foundation for every kind of personal report in astrology.
The birth chart is an interpretation of our specific place and time of physical entry on Earth, using a specific and personal point of view from Earth, and then out into our solar system, the little neighborhood we inhabit in this galaxy.
It is important to keep in mind, that the Earth itself is invisible within scale of size compared to some of the universe’s most gargantuan heavenly bodies. If the Earth is invisible in scale to some heavenly bodies, what does that make us? What is beyond invisible?
Yet, we are present and in relationship with all that is.
This is amazing and good to orient ourselves in this way, beyond the mundane, while remaining rooted in facts of reality, as we know them so far!
What Is A Birth Chart
So, the astrological birth chart is an imprint of us, our total life here, from the vantage point of our geographical placement and time of birth entry on this planet, latitude and longitude, and again, in relationship to some of the main heavenly bodies in our solar system neighborhood.
It is important to note, the 12 Zodiac Constellations in our sky identified by astronomers reflect, but are NOT the same as the 12 Zodiac signs used in astrology. The signs aren’t real in the astronomical sense. They are symbols created by math and the Sun’s relationship to the Earth throughout a year’s time — something called the ecliptic. The Zodiac is an area in the sky that is from our point of view. Astrology is personal. Yet, that doesn’t limit it’s depth.
The birth chart contains all of our potential in the many areas of life — from the deep and shallow, daily and routine, to the mystical and esoteric. The planets, stars, and other heavenly bodies in astrology are symbols we use to enrich our point of view, gain new perspective, and seek greater harmony within our lives. Astrology is an incredible timely and timeless tool that illuminates many things, including the energies/influences, patterns, cycles, inheritances, and dynamics in our now, in our past, and even our potential future.
The heavenly bodies in our solar system represent energies of personality, lessons, patterns, cycles of energy, phases, and time; dynamics, and aspects via often myth-inspired archetypes.
For the astrologer, the planets and other heavenly bodies we focus on (asteroids and mystical points, for example) amazingly mirror our inner and outer realities in perplexing and accurate ways. After studying astrology off and on for the past 25-30 years, and then taking it seriously and providing astrology reports professionally for the last 7 years or so now — I am always amazed by how it works, and how well it works. The tool is complex and layered. If you are looking at only one or two aspects of a birth chart, like the Sun Sign or Rising Sign, you are probably missing not only the big picture — more importantly, you may even be misinterpreting key facts, due to other areas of the chart that may significantly change dynamics relating to the ones you may be focusing on. Experiencing the in-depth interpretation of a birth chart is an esoteric and mystifying perspective, and so interesting to experience and share.
No Belief Required
You do not need to believe in astrology. It is a helpful tool that provides insights and ideas to contemplate in the form of mythology, symbols, and traits. You do not need to believe in a paint brush, wrench, or clay in order to benefit from it and use it. You also do not need to believe in meditation in order to practice it and benefit from it.
As For Astronomy…
Astronomy is a scientific perspective of information, discoveries, theories, and facts about our physical existence on Earth, in this solar system, and beyond. That information — the images, and the growing knowledge about our universe provided by modern astronomers/scientists — is captivating and inspiring to learn about and explore. They can call astrology a pseudoscience or placebo all they want, if that is what they need to do to distance themselves and assert their special authority. This doesn’t change the fact that astronomy can enrich the ancient and vast traditions of astrology, but it can never replace it.
Holistic Vision: Both/And Instead Of Either/Or
As someone who has overcome great odds with the help of creative and spiritual tools and techniques, I understand the importance of spiritual practices — meaning, ritual, and the rich value of symbolism, intuition, and imagination. I also find great value in ethical science, logic, and critical thinking. I won’t abandon either one. Despite the adversarial and dismissive tone taken by some scientists and astronomers about astrology, astrology remains strong and relevant.
A holistic approach and vision means that science and spirituality don’t have to agree, speak the same, or see the same…AND neither one can replace the other. They don’t need to. We don’t want them to. They are individual, related, and part of a whole — which is much bigger than either one.
Most of us need some sort of deeper meaning and context in order to enrich our lives, and experience fulfillment. Our intelligence (emotional and intellectual), and our spirit (energy and consciousness) thrive when we are able to place meaning, and a deeper sense of purpose into the fabric of our lives — while also addressing, in real ways, what is broken, what needs to be faced, and encouraged in order to begin or continue healing.
I feel, see, and know astrology to be an impressive and beautiful symbolic tool.
My Practice And Approach
I have witnessed “aha” moments of clients getting unstuck — key realizations shifted their perspective during an astrology consultation. I have had the joy of astrological consultations where my client is not prepared for how deep and real astrology consultations can become, and then also the astonishment at how fast the time flies as we explore some of the territories and dynamics of the birth chart. Getting affirmation and insight into ourselves in new ways can be an inspiring catalyst for new perspective that leads to a renewed resolve for positive goals and approaches in life.
Tension and conflict between life partners, or with a parent with their child, can be due to misunderstanding, personality, blind-spots, and missing information. I have witnessed the intense and important realizations of an in-depth birth chart consultation and report that helped to shift and improve these relationships (between partners and between parent-child), because the information provided the opportunity for new perspective and insights. That resulted in a clarification that untangled some misunderstanding, new appreciation, and deeper understanding in the relationship.
Even for those who have done tireless self-work for decades, the revisiting of birth and transit charts on and off through each year may not bring as many surprises as for the newbie, but it still delivers insight and kind guidance, if one is open and ready to hear/see it and respond accordingly. Some of these things do defy logic. In turn, I have learned that the logical mind can become satisfied, after months, years, and/or decades of confirmations/results, that it is, somehow, astonishingly accurate and helpful. The logical mind does accept success that is proven over and over, even if the exact how and why is somewhat enfolded in mystery. I have come to feel joy and gratitude that there is mystery.
I continue to research, learn, and practice with humbled passion, knowing that there is always a tremendous range of mountains of more to learn and explore in astrology!
The Importance Of Integrity, Ethics, & Experience
Critical thinking, intuition, research, astronomy, a holistic perspective, and a Jungian understanding of light, shadow, and the urge to integrate broken and rejected pieces back into wholeness and wellness — all inform my practice. Doing the hard self-care and personal development for decades; having encountered good and bad examples of practitioners, in being dedicated to ethical standards and power differentials — I avoid assumptions, quick judgments, and present possibilities, potential, ask questions, and welcome feedback.
Free Will & Improvisation VS. Fate
We have free will, choice, action, instinct, common sense, intuition and presence. Despite qualities and energies that seem to be or are, in some sense, fated or fixed. We are not bound by fate entirely, in life or in astrology — even though there are some fixed dynamics in life and personality that may make it seem that way too often. Yet, most often this — LIFE — is an improvisational dance…unpredictable and changeable. Maybe what is really needed, is to discipline our thoughts and emotions, practice awareness, and exercise our sacred imagination for other’s and our own benefit and enrichment.
That is good news, as long as we are willing to face and take responsibility for our shortcomings, continue learning, growing, and respond and act on the information we are given in the best ways possible — unique to each of us. That takes a commitment to response, mindfulness, wellness, and holistic care for self and in personal choices. That means looking at your blind-spots, wounds, and shadow qualities as much as your gifts, talents, and amazing potential.
This also means doing the work seriously and earnestly, but not taking ourselves or each other too seriously! Good humor is essential. It helps us to endure while maintaining sanity in insane conditions. The best comedians illuminate what is wrong in a way that awakens and frees us, via real heart, mind, and belly laughter. The best comedians touch on truths that jolt us into really and joyfully seeing the F-words of our ways: our folly, farce, and fouls, OR the reality of the twisted corruption that we deal with in our culture. Good humor relieves some of the pressure points of pain, and gives us space to breathe and clarity to see, process, and address it anew.
In General, Western Astrology Uses:
- The 12 Zodiac Signs, which are symbols based on the Zodiac Constellations (The Zodiac was documented by ancient astronomers, many of whom were also astrologers at the time. Astronomy has since moved well beyond the Zodiac of astrology, while western astrology keeps the 12 Signs at it’s core. Remember, Signs aren’t Constellations, and Constellations aren’t Signs.)
- Mythology and mythological archetypes
- Symbols: elements (earth, air, fire, water), modes of dealing with change and collaboration (fixed, mutable, cardinal), and yin or yang energy
- Aspects, which are dynamics of energy, based on degrees of relationship between heavenly bodies and our time and place of birth
- Ancient to modern methods/calculations based on the heavenly bodies’ relation to when and where an individual is born on Earth, down to minutes, latitude and longitude
- A mandala (circle) called a chart, which is divided into 12 sections called houses, which represent different areas of life, from personal and private to public and transpersonal, and time
The calculation of the astrological birth chart is the basis for all other calculations and reports made in astrology. It is relevant for the individual’s whole life, and covers nearly every important area of life with some surprising detail.
An Ancient Legacy
The history and use of astrology in conjunction with astronomy has been going on since ancient times. Astronomy and Astrology were one in ancient times — identical twins, in a way — who later parted ways (circa 1400–1700). Astrological tradition has continued in different ways throughout history and around the world: Egyptian, Hellenistic, Indian, Chinese, Greek, Roman, Indigenous, and Renaissance Europe. Each had and has their approach and system/rules for calculations, perspective, and symbolism. Many are complex and layered.
Diverse And Long-Lived
Vedic (Indian), Mayan (and other Indigenous approaches/systems worldwide), Chinese, Western; esoteric, evolutionary, humanist, classic, modern, ancient, and with Heliocentric or Geocentric perspective, and more — there are many origins, approaches, technical details, and facets to astrology.
Babylonia had one of the most ancient records of astrology, dating back to the 2nd Millennium BC.
The countless approaches often differ greatly, and even within one system, using different calculation methods — results can be totally different.
Astrology has ancient roots globally, and it endures. Its global longevity, with room for different viewpoints, methods, new discoveries, adaptations, and approaches, is evidence of its ongoing usefulness as a tool for personal development, awareness of and harmonizing with local & universal energies/cycles/patterns, and self-discovery.
I recommend exploring astrology, and know that there is always more to learn. Be sure to avoid commercialized astrology that is over-simplified, shallow, compartmentalized, and/or sensationalized.
Wild Clover Astrology, Chandra S Sherin, WildClover.org © 2018. All rights reserved. If you wish to use, share or quote the above text, you must receive permission from the author first. If you are sharing this page via social media this copyright, author, source, and all information on the page must remain intact and unmodified.