God’s Bread Crumbs: How I became an astrologer

astrologerPEOPLE OFTEN ASK me how I got into astrology. Under my breath, my first answer is always: “desperation.” Perhaps the following paragraphs will give you a felt sense of the karmic set-up that pushed me into this work. A more ingenious crucible, I could not imagine. Of course, this crucible is not unique to me; all archetypal me-stories are up against the wall. It is my hope that by sharing this little vignette with you, that you will recognize and generate greater compassion for the “little Buddha” within you who is, to this day, uncrushed and ready to roar.

It took me years to fully confess the “screwed” nature of Samsara; to admit that every ego – most notably, my own – is heartbreakingly addicted to posturing a seamless me-story in alignment with whatever karma and conditioning imagine us to be. Gradually, it dawned on me what, exactly, ego was: the compulsion to charmingly distract from the identity-dissolving Immensity that is each present moment.

As a child, I found this dissonance between people’s me-story/facial shtick and their actual moment-to-moment inner state to be crazy-making and traumatic. Day after endless day, I felt the big people pressuring me to believe in and respond to their outer mask, even as I watched aghast at how robotically enslaved they were to their conditioned points of view and how nervously they propped up a personality in front of their constantly collapsing inner regime. It was as if they were saying, “Believe in my act and I’ll act like I love you.” Innocently and inevitably, they were enlisting me to help save them from the ego-dissolving present. Lacking any meditative practice, how could they not?

The result? Just like many kids, I felt desperately invisible and psychologically used. Still, I was a kid; I felt insecure and I needed love and approval. So I took the bait. I dissociated from my spaciousness, intuition and bodily signals, and donned my own fledgling me-story mask in order to create some semblance of alignment and connection to them. Or, when this socially acceptable contrivance became too exhausting, I avoided the big people all together, retreating into numb, melancholic self-absorption- or, by grace, the pristine forest – in a flimsy attempt at being true to my own energy.

Stamped as I was by this tortured tattoo, my life trajectory was pretty much predetermined. At age 18, I de-numbed some of my body and reclaimed some of my masculine yang-ness by spending 15 years doing dangerous “be present or die” work as a tree surgeon. When the pain of overriding my Cancer/Pisces vocational karma became too much, I trained to become a deep tissue bodyworker, and when, after many years, that failed to express my Scorpionic calling to work deeply and directly with people’s karmic grace and grit, I apprenticed as an astrologer.

In short, I followed the bread crumbs that God sprinkled in front of me and did my best, as we all do, to make meaning out of suffering. Now, through the Astrodharma Institute, I help others do the same.

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