This year at Norwac I will be giving a pre-conference workshop called Finding the True Self: Technical and Counseling Skills for Astrologers. This will focus on work emerging from my forthcoming book Therapeutic Astrology which is in the editing process (thanks as ever due to the brilliance of Tony Howard) and scheduled to be published in September to coincide with my Fall trip to the US, when I will visit Boulder and Portland to teach two extended weekend intensives.
I am also giving two 90 minute talks (new longer format) at the NORWAC conference, one on the Uranus opposition and one on Neptune and healing. I hope you can join me there. I will be in Minneapolis the weekend before Norwac teaching on the potential of the birth chart to explore prior life material and the value of that in a vision of deep healing.
I was in Serbia at the Kepler Institute in March teaching a workshop on Pluto as the Soul’s perspective. The workshop was held on Serbia’s National Women’s Day and was attended by a room full of only women! A funny synchronicity occurred when describing the nature of attachment. I used an example of opening the door to a sexy man – when a knock was heard at the door and a lady at the front said, "it is our sexy man." Indeed a very shy young man was delivering a parcel and had no idea why a roomful of women were applauding and laughing as he entered!
Read more: May 2013 Newsletter
As we approach the festive season at the close of another year (don’t they pass ever more rapidly…) I include in this newsletter an update on the vision of a healing orientated vision of Evolutionary Astrology that I am working on in my writing, teaching and client work. I hope that you find it useful or at least interesting.
In October I taught two great groups Stateside: in Boulder, CO (a workshop on my core approach to the natal chart) and in Portland, OR (a workshop on composite charts). I was struck in both places by the quality of the students. The response towards deep questions about the way the chart works by students who are bringing years of their own study and approach to astrology to bear on the method I am teaching drew out the best in me and kept me on my toes!
In Boulder I was emphasizing how helpful studies can be but how they need to come to a point of focus; a commitment to a particular approach to achieve the depth that is present in the natal chart but that requires a dedication to a central method or point of entry in order to get the most from it. I was sharing my experience over the years of working with people who have many years more experience of astrology that myself but who have often struggled to orientate to the range of possibilities within the birth chart. It is ironic that the more experienced astrologer in many ways faces a different version of the one faced by the beginner in the field; with all the possible meanings within a chart – where does one begin?
Read more: December 2012 News
I write with gratitude after my latest travels to Belgrade, Minneapolis and Seattle to all who made those trips possible and all who attended and shared my work with me as it evolves. While teaching to a crowded room in Belgrade on the subject of Uranus as a signature of trauma and of liberation, a young man shared how he had skipped classes to travel across town because he felt the workshop addressed such an important subject. I had assumed he was a student, it later emerged that he was the mathematics tutor at the university and he had told his students to have the afternoon off – “There is something important I need to do...”
To share the work from Healing the Soul on trauma was gratifying and it produced a response from the class who were always pushing me to find new ways to discuss how to work with such trauma, how to heal. In a city with more than its fair share of traumatic experiences, Aleksandar Imsiragic has set up the Johannes Kepler Institute which sees Serbians, Croatians and Bosnians working together towards a brighter future. In this way I was pushed to draw upon my personal experiences from over a decade of work as a Psychosynthesis Therapist to describe the ways that I had worked with people to move them through traumatic experience to a sense of peace or understanding. I am grateful for that experience and what it drew forth from me.
I was then able to share the nature of projection in a talk on Venus and its higher octave, Neptune in which I presented the idea that love is that which is chosen when the romantic dreams and projections fall away, or are broken. In a wonderful book by Vernoica Goodchild, Eros and Chaos on the mystery on love (one that Rilke called “the work for which all other work is but preparation”) she shares a quotation from Isabel Allende from the book Paula that Allende wrote after the death of her daughter:
“Perhaps we are in this world to search for love, find it and lose it, again and again. With each love, we are born anew, and with each love that ends we collect a new wound. I am covered with proud scars.”
It felt important to include this therapeutic experience, drawn from me in Belgrade, as I gave an expanded version of the relationship talk ‘Soul to Soul’ which too place earlier this year in Minneapolis. Then at the Norwac conference in Seattle afterwards, I was able to expand further the therapeutic dimension via a talk about Saturn as representing an apparent limit or seeming loss that in being truly understood becomes the guardian of one’s potential and depth.
Read more: May 2012 News
In his concise and illuminating 1963 book, The Symbolic and the Real, Ira Progoff analyses the psychoanalytic movement as arising from the loss of stability occurring in western culture at the end of the nineteenth century. This is the collective loss of religious meaning (Nietzsche’s proclamation ‘God is dead’) and societal structure through the Industrial revolution that will culminate to the great wars of the twentieth century. Psychoanalysis is a genuine attempt to find a new kind of meaning to stabilize a new sense of identity in that changing world.
The importance of understanding the origins of depth psychology is clear when we recognize that almost all modern psychological or counselling based Astrology owes elements of its approach (whether people realize it or not) to the insights that originated with that movement and the multiplicity of developments that have occurred since pioneers such as Freud and Jung.
It is also not hard to observe that the loss of religious meaning and the stability of social contracts within society that began with the Industrial revolution has continued unabashed and that the collective milieu that produced the original movement of depth psychology is outdone by modern culture in which the pace of change is almost unimaginable: the curious reality that there was no real home internet usage prior to the 1990’s is illustrative in a world where I now have to routinely take question from my mother, a senior, on how to download photos or film.
Read more: February 2012: On Neptune in Pisces
This is my first email newsletter and an update on what I am up to in 2011. Much is brewing over the next year and I'm excited to have a few opportunities coming up soon to spend some time with some of you in person at 2 great astrology conferences: NORWAC at the end of May in Seattle, and The Evolutionary Astrology Conference in Portland in November.
First of all thank you to any and all who have expressed interest in my work. To those explicitly that have requested information on online classes and tutorials, my apologies for the delay on those coming into being. But the delay is caused by a bit of good news. I have found the first quarter of the New Year dominated by writing my first book on Pluto, Uranus, the Lunar Nodes and Planetary Nodes which is now two-thirds written in draft form. Whilst there is still a way to go with it I am hoping that the book will be written, edited and published by the November Evolutionary Astrology conference in Portland, Oregon.
Read more: April 2011 Astrology News