Archive for Narrative Therapy

Astrology, Narrative and Pronoia

Posted in Astrology, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , on January 12, 2014 by sudhirastropoetica

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It’s been a long time between drinks, which seems to have become the case as I have been making my way through the land of academia for these last three years. The good news is that in approximately three and a bit months I will have a counselling degree. Aside from giving me some extra street cred, it has certainly rounded and strengthened and deepened my approach to counselling. It’s also brought me in touch with some fantastic new approaches to counselling in the form of narrative therapy and existential counselling, as articulated by Amy Van Deurzen. I’m sure there will be more to do with those two subjects as this next round of blogs arise. Adding solid counselling skills to astrology is a passion of mine. I guess that comes from having done way too many sessions in the past to help people recover from having had astrology sessions. Superstition is not the way to encourage people to trust life and empower themselves oh overly predictive friends of mine.

My conception of astrology is rightfully morphing, changing and growing, in a lovely protean, creative fashion. Astrology is if nothing else a glorious web of stories, hiding within the enigmatic surface of a set of ancient symbols. These stories, often with their roots in Greek mythology, but not always, are ways of identifying and defining our own story lines. By identifying our story lines we can start to figure out where they reinforce who we are and where they get in the way. If they are getting in our way, then our job is to find the alternative, hidden seam of experiences and narratives, that may serve to empower and awaken us. This is the work of narrative therapy. To identify and begin to perform the threads of narrative that can lead us where we want to go. It is to get out of the thrall of the stories we carry in our hearts that keep us chained.

Which brings me to Pronoia. Pronoia is a word picked up and extended on by fellow maverick astrologer Rob Brezsny. In fact he has turned it into a book which I am reading right now. Pronoia is the antidote for paranoia. It is not blind, Christianity-in-drag, new ageism. It is a way of looking at what’s going on in the world that acknowledges reality, while hunting for and threading together all the beautiful, life affirmative things that are happening before our eyes – that we miss seeing because we are so stuck in collective negative dross. I thoroughly recommend checking him out. He’s got his own way of telling his tale, which may or may not sit well with you – but he really does have a fine tale to tell – so bear with him. Anyone that quotes Hafiz as freely as he does is all right by me.

On a practical note, I still have books for sale. They are $20, Australian with free postage anywhere in the world. You can pay using paypal. I am available for Skype sessions wherever you are in the world. I charge $100 Australian (you get a session, a recording of the session and a copy of my book for that – as long as stocks remain). Contact me here through wordpress or by e-mail (astropoetica@gmail.com). If you are in Brisbane, or close by, I can come and do group sessions with you and your buddies whenever you want. Feel free to get in touch.

Much love and fun – and lots of good will and wishes for 2014. It feels like it will be a good one to me.

Sudhir

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Postmodern Astrology

Posted in Astrology, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , on December 23, 2012 by sudhirastropoetica

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I love astrology – mainly for its mythological, hence psychological, depth. The superstition that still surrounds it however has always driven me to distraction. That people in the 21st century still cling to the idea that it has scientific credibility in its present form, defies belief. Perhaps one day someone will find an empirical connection between the planets, stars and life on earth. Maybe once in the days of genuine intuitive cognition it was understood correctly. Presently it’s a dog’s breakfast.

Up until now, rather than get tangled in the muddy soup of that argument, I have focussed on identifying the witness of it all. There is a witness to the whole dance of energy that we are and that life is. This witness is the core of awareness which provides the hub of silence that offers refuge from the noise – or a counterpoint to the noise.

Going to Uni has opened up another way of looking at these things for me. I am blessed to finally get my head around postmodernism. We are made up of stories – and these stories are malleable. To put astrology into this mix is a fascinating journey. The stories, archetypes and mythological patterns that form the template of astrology, are malleable. We can read them however we want to read them, make meaning of them in whatever way we want to make meaning of them – and shift them around to affirm the very best of who we are, as we please. That takes all the dogmatic lunacy out of astrology and empowers we lovers of grand archetypal narrative, in whole new ways.

My greatest joy so far in finally doing a counselling degree, is to have discovered narrative therapy – and in particular the works of Michael White and David Epston. To sum it up briefly, narrative suggests that when we are in a bit of a ditch, we are often plagued by problem-saturated narratives that distort our view. Through externalising our problem/s, we can deconstruct them, see what ideas beliefs etc drive them – and then go looking for other, hidden healthy narratives that are also present in our lives but are operating out of sight. As we strengthen these alternate narratives, so we can move from ‘problem’ to creativity, strength, awareness, love, whatever.

To put astrology into this context, imagine not being hoodwinked into certain not very constructive predictive interpretations of your sign, or your present day transits but instead being free to rewrite the interpretation according to your unique healthy creative narrative – the one that lives underneath any deterministic power-drenched superstitious nonsense you might have had put on you by some apparently authoritative astrologer, or cook-book astrological manual. This opens up the possibility of each person finding their most unique astrological self – one that identifies their strengths and celebrates them.

And then we can find the witness!

Much love
Sudhir
PS I still have books for sale. $25 including postage anywhere in the world!