Freedom from Astrology: Letting Go of Our Persona
This quote from “The Hermetica” explains the purpose of what I call, Freedom Astrology:
“It is a man’s lot to live the life prescribed for him by his fate. Very few human beings are capable of escaping from the determining influence of the Zodiac. Man’s earthly life is controlled by the power of Destiny, through the physical limitations of the mortal human body. However, if a man’s mind is illuminated by the Light of God, he become free from these celestial influences — for even the gods are powerless before God.”
Back to the Roots of Astrology
Years ago, I had the opportunity as part of my Master’s Degree program to self-design a class. I could ask any professor to be my mentor. One of the professors at the university was a brilliant astrologer and therapist from the Jung Institute in Zürich. I knew that I wanted her to be my mentor. When she accepted my proposal, I was absolutely thrilled. At that time, I did think that perhaps the stars compelled us in some way. I wanted to get some of that power, if it really existed.
Astrology was more difficult for me than I anticipated. There was so much to memorize. So one day while taking a long bus trip, I devised a little story system. I visualized each sign or planet as different characters. The houses represented different environments. Once those personalities came alive within me, I just allowed them to speak to me. I didn’t share this little game with my professor because I was certain that it was not the academic way to do astrology. I didn’t realize that I was tapping into the creative principal behind astrology. I was communing with the ancient storytellers who also used the sky characters and their stories to explain life and our purpose in it.
In the Beginning…
Thousands of years ago, there were no lights, no televisions, and no Wi-Fi connections to keep people entertained. It was a bit dull after sunset. But without lights, the sky was perfectly clear. Since many of the ancient story writers lived in the desert of the middle east, cloud cover was rare.
The sky characters moved and interacted each night creating a never-ending story. Heroes (or sky gods) and their evil opponents (or demons) battled the forces of nature and opposed each other. These were eternal beings; none of them ever died. In fact, they all still hang out together every night. The stars were in the heavens where life was eternal, where there were no limitations, and where everything always worked out just fine.
Sometimes the storytellers thought the sky gods died because a constellation or planet moved out of view. But suddenly the hero god would rise again just like a Phoenix out of the ashes. What appeared to be chaos was actually a perfect cycle. If it were possible to see the sky at one time, the perfection would be obvious. But our perspective is always limited by our place in space and time.
When you understand this, you can understand why the ancient people built pyramids and temples aligned with the stars. The Giza Pyramids align with Orion and the Sphinx gazes at Leo; its pure reflection during a time known as the first time or Zep Tepi.
Stone circles, like Stonehenge, were also vehicles for connecting with the heavens. People felt separate from heaven; and so they brought heaven to earth by aligning they holy places with the stars. Within these sacred monuments and buildings, they conducted rituals and ceremonies, they danced, they sang, and they studied truth so that they could become like the star heroes that they admired. Oh we haven’t changed much. Today we want to be like our movie stars and sports heroes. Then we were a little more picky.
The True Self and the Personality
Astrology has the same pattern as the story of Jesus (as well as many other ancient hero gods). Jesus sat in the center of the horoscope with his twelve disciples surrounding him. The horoscope is designed like a wheel with the earth (or hero) in the center; the signs, houses, and planets represent the persona moving around the earth. Each disciple represented an aspect of Jesus’ personality, his false self. The disciples were nothing compared to the master in the center, just as the personality is nothing compared to the True Self. The limited personality or false self is, in fact, that part of us which creates all of our challenges and obstacles.
Everyone of us has an unchanging True Self in our center and a personality or façade that surrounds it. We are all omnipotent masters when we behave from our True Self. But when we behave from our personality, our zodiac, we are limited. Thus Jesus was a pattern of perfection with the goal to defeat his own evil persona and simply be his True Self. We’re all Jesus taking this same difficult journey to live from our True Self in a world that doesn’t make that easy.
Our personality was meant to be temporary much like an actor’s character is a temporary facade. It was our role and had character traits that were right for a particular experience. But when that experience was complete, the personality was dropped just like an actor drops their character at the end of film production.
If desired, the True Self created another personality. Over time, people merged the body and personality into a more permanent idea often called the soul. Thus people became afraid to let go of the personality for fear that their body would die.
In ancient times, initiates learned the art of crucifying the personality. Since they knew the personality was not real or permanent, the true Self remained. They did not die. In fact, it was said that the initiate entered the mystery school as a man and emerged as a God. Their mind at that point was now labeled virgin. It could start over and create anew.
Most traditional astrologers don’t honor the true master in the center of the chart, which would also be the earth. Earth and heart share the same letters; and we often refer to our True Self as our heart. Traditional astrologers read the persona as if it is real and unchangeable for our entire lifetime. Thus astrology has become quite serious, taking away much of the fun. The horoscope is like a wheel, the further from the center you stand the wilder the ride. If you think you are the person riding on the rim of the wheel (your personality), life is really difficult. But if you realize that the rim of the wheel is only your personality and let it go, you gradually move to the center where life is calm and safe. This internal letting go process was often called the hero’s journey or the initiate’s quest.
The Perfect Horoscope
I loved reading astrology charts. I felt connected with the stories of all time and all space. I found that as I read people’s charts, I could often glimpse their never-ending star story. I would sit at my computer with loud music playing through my headphones. I’d move my eyes around the perimeter of the wheel and type what I imagined the characters would say. As the story emerged, I would fall deeply in love with the person. It was not just a superficial love; it was real unconditional love. I felt that I really, truly knew them.
That feeling of unconditional love became my touchstone for knowing that I accomplished what I set out to do. The unconditional love told me that my report was correct.
Was I really reading their chart or was I just connecting with the best of me that connected to the best of them? I don’t know. I don’t know if I care that I don’t know. I often wondered if people would recognize what I saw in them. In most cases they did recognize their True Self even thought they usually saw it as an imaginary character in their mind.
My Final Astrology Exam
My professor gave me a final astrology assignment. I was to choose six people who I didn’t know very well and read their charts. I could not choose family or close friends. Then I had to present the readings to my subjects and record their feedback.
Five of my guinea pigs were fairly new employees, who now thought their boss was crazy. The last one was Peter, a man from Guyana who was in the process of buying my business. People said he was shrewd, impossible to get to know, and dishonest. What better way to find out if they were telling me the truth about Peter than to do his astrology chart?
Peter agreed. In fact, he thought it was a cool idea. With each person, I went into my strange astrology world armed with my headphones and laptop. I wired in to my computer and my strange cosmic network that knows all of our stories. Several hours later a complete astrological report emerged. Each was unique and made sense to me based on what little I knew about the person. But the most astonishing thing was my own alchemical transformation. I started off merely liking the person and ended up unconditional loving them. It always happened magically and automatically when I got all the notes in the symphony correct.
The Place Where We Are All Good
I met with each of my guinea pigs, saving Peter for last. In each case, the person agreed that I reflected his or her deepest thoughts and feelings. Their real desires were nested in what I described. Finally, it was time to meet with number six, Peter. His reading was powerful, and I was anxious to hear his reaction. I saw that his True Self desired to do good in the world, but his false self delivered what people expected. Sadly people didn’t expect goodness from him. You could say his personality was a people un-pleaser. As I shared my insights with him, particular about his True Self, tears welled up in both of our eyes.
“That is me. That is the man who I see in my mind. It is who I know I am. But when I try to bring that being into the world, I’m always thwarted by other people’s expectations. People presume I have a bad agenda; and I seem to deliver what they expect. Then I feel bad about myself, and I stay caught in a stupid spider’s web.”
Could Peter finally accepted the man we saw inside as real and true? I did not know, but I decided to go forward with the sale of the company. It finally felt like the right thing to do.
Six months later, I moved to the country to pursue my passion for esoteric research. Monthly checks come from Peter. I was living my dream life. One day, while sitting on my balcony with my best friend sipping some coffee and enjoying my beautiful mountain view, the doorbell rang. It was the FedEx man with a legal document. Peter had taken all the cash out of the business and left the country. Most likely, he fled back to Guyana. The letter said it was unlikely that I’d ever see another penny from him.
Once Connected, Always Connected
But here is where the story gets interesting. Once I connected with a person’s True Self, I could not reverse that connection. Our events meant nothing; I could not stop unconditionally loving them. As strange as it seems, I still felt nothing but unconditional love for Peter. I knew this was just another chapter in his story. He wasn’t ready to be the man we both knew existed within. I also knew deep in the center of my being that I would be fine because he wouldn’t disappoint me. He was doing this to disappoint his employees (who used to be my employees). His false self won again; but believing his false self was who he was would not help either of us.
One week later, my husband came home from work with a giant grin on his face. He said, “You won’t believe this, but one of our old clients called me and just gave me a huge contract. I took the contract because we no longer have a non-compete agreement with Peter.” We sat down and added up the profits from the contract. It was almost exactly the same amount as Peter’s default.
Peter still had false-self baggage to unravel. Our interaction reminded him that his true Self existed; and hopefully, that reminder gave him reason to continue his own initiate’s journey to the center of his being. I never heard from him again.
Since I reached a place of unconditional love with Peter, he could not harm me. The money I deserved was just rerouted.
I needed that experience. I needed to know that unconditional love did have that kind of power. That experience has given me the confidence to challenge long-standing beliefs in myself, in others, and in the world. It has given me the ability to keep looking for the truth when it seemed that the rest of the world believed something false. I needed to know that there was an omnipotent force that supported my True Self. I guess that is what people call God, but it ain’t no man on a golden throne. I needed to know that if I lived from that center, everything would always work out. I guess you could say that I needed proof that God was not just some punishing, jealous, whining slave owner.
The Power of Unconditional Love
That experience changed my life. When things get hard now, I bring unconditional love to the table. Often if I’m too deep in my false mind, I can’t remember that I have the weapon of unconditional love. But as soon as I remember it, things fall back into place. Unconditional love is the one sword that kills the false persona while at the same time strengthening the truth. But the love must be unconditional.
If a reward is desired or a change needed, I’m not in unconditional love. Romance, care taking, or being nice to each other are not unconditional; thus, they have no real power. Each time we use the sword of authentic love, it becomes more powerful until we become as Zeus with a lightning bolt of power in our hand. Yes, we too can emerge with the power of the Gods just like the ancient initiates.
We live in a time when we are all dropping our personalities and moving to our center. We are doing this on a microcosmic level with our own lives, bodies, and minds. We are doing it on a national, global, and even universal macrocosmic level. The stories of the past were the dreams of our ancestors who transcribed the stars into tragedies and comedies. Our astrological persona is not our true identity.
The stars don’t dictate our True Self; but they influence our false persona because of widespread belief through eons of time. The sky characters existed only within our ancestors’ dreams. We thought their dream characters were real; but they were only illusions. And now it’s time in the never-ending sky story to move to the center of the wheel, to allow the stars to just be stars, and to return to paradise.