Saturday, January 13, 2018

At Seventy, Our Saturn Returns Are Behind Us; We begin to Transcend Our Natal Chart

“At Seventy we begin to transcend our Astrological Birth Charts.”  Elizabeth Spring

“At Seventy I am more than ever myself….”  May Sarton
All our lives our astrological birth charts have a strong hold on us. However an interesting thing happens after the second Saturn Return at age 59. Our charts have less of a hold on us as we become the conductor of our own inner orchestra.
We may not even notice this gradual change, but because we know ourselves, and because of something I can only call grace, we gain more free will….and a certain sweetness often enters our lives. “Unbidden grace”.
We listen to the sometimes conflicting voices within and make better choices. We know ourselves more: the inner slippery slopes of Pluto as well as the risks of Jupiterian “too muchness”. We walk with Saturn and do what needs to be done, instead of trying to escape.  It happens gradually of course, and seventy is not set in stone. It could be sixty or even earlier for you….but as an astrologer of 35 years I’ve noticed this happening with my clients and myself.
  As Tracy Marks writes in the November 2017 edition of Mountain Astrologer: “An important principle of depth astrology is that we can transcend the apparent fixity of our charts. We carry our natal charts within us all our lives, but as we develop a center within ourselves and learn to trust our inner guidance, we can be less at the mercy of the stresses indicated by our natal planets….as we make choices that consider our conflicting needs, we become the puppeteer rather than the puppets in our own cosmic drama.”
Perhaps this is grace.  Have you felt the subtle contentment that sneaks up on you at the most ordinary of times?

“I do not understand
the mystery of grace
only that it meets us where we are
and does not leave us
where it found us.”

Anne Lamott

Monday, April 28, 2014

Excerpt from new book on "Lifting the Veil; Becoming Your Own Best Astrologer"

What Your Astrologer Doesn’t tell You~ What is “beneath the veil” in the astrologer’s art?


“When an inner situation is not made conscious, it happens outside as fate.” C.G. Jung


What doesn’t your astrologer tell you? What doesn’t your doctor tell you? Or your car mechanic? They tell you as much as they think it would be good for you to hear or what—in their judgment—is best for them or you to know. It’s a little tricky at times.

Most astrologers do their best and I’m not implying that there is some gypsy fortune telling going on “beneath the veil” of astrology, but I am saying that there’s a lot more under the hood of your car than your mechanic has the time or inclination to tell you about. And doctors? Well, you tell me. Most of us search for a doctor who will listen to our unique story and not give us the same old answer we received last time.

We also don’t want astrologers who assume all Jupiter transits are good and all Saturn transits bad. We don’t want astrologers who are super-technical geeks (they should be computer programmers!) and, who like “bad husbands”~grin~ don’t listen to you.

What your astrologer doesn’t tell you is that you and your astrologer are going to be exploring the unconscious together—yikes!—and he is hoping that “the gods” of this realm are going to be with you both at the time of your session. He or she is wondering how deep you want to go in these waters. Believe me, if you have a really good astrologer, then he or she is going to be almost as anxious as you are…and most astrologers won’t tell you that, because sometimes the gods speak through us, and sometimes they don’t. You will be swimming together in deep waters where ethics and truth-telling and compassionate listening are crucial.


So with that in mind, the first unveiling of what astrologers don’t always tell you—is the hard part of the Truth: your shadow, the repressed unconscious part of you that’s contributing to your problems. Astrologers struggle with how much of this to share, and most won’t do too much talking about this on your first reading with them~or you’re likely not to come back!


The shadow is like the dragon we see here in this print, as the woman sees the reflection of her negativity—the dragon—in the mirror. We see—and project—these annoying “dragons” onto other people, but it’s harder to see it in ourselves. This is the area where you are somewhat responsible for the difficulties in your life, and it relates to the problematic question you’ve brought to the astrologer. It’s what Carl Jung called the unconscious shadow and it’s often your unknowing complicity in the problem you’ve brought to the astrologer. It’s about where you are wounded. Can you learn to love it? Can you learn to feel the compassion for yourself that you see in this painting of the dragon and maiden?

Most astrologers don’t want to poke at your wounds but rather want to encourage you like a coach. If he dwells on what you’re possibly doing wrong you’ll regret having paid good money for an uncomfortable session, and you may end up in a defensive mode. Most people say they want the Truth but what they really want is to be affirmed and to know more so that they can make better decisions—this is fine, and is truly enough for many readings. But the deeper problem may not be explored. This is where your knowing of yourself and of astrology gives you an advantage. You can dare to look at your shadow (in the mirror) by looking at Saturn, Pluto, and the South Node in your chart, and pondering their meaning by sign and house. You can also look to what may be hidden in the 12th house. If you’re fairly new to astrology you’ll understand the last few sentences better in the next few chapters.

Sharon Russell, an artist from Ojai, California, painted the “shadow dragon” as a series of dragon pictures—and in the one we see here, the “dragon” is finally understood, and accepted; there is a feeling of great compassion here. The dragon and the maiden are in an embrace, and she has stopped negating and rejecting the dragon because she realizes that he is a part of herself that she has not loved. This is my favorite painting in the series, but you can find the whole dragon-shadow story in Sharon’s book: “Innocence to Wholeness.”   ~Elizabeth Spring