|Management of Measurement Constructs
Knowledge is separate from Talent
How many people do you know who read cookbooks all the time (for fun) but simply don’t do anything in the kitchen? Think of the music critics who know EVERYTHING about opera, for example, but can’t sing a note. Think of all the psychiatrists who have grievous relationship problems!
The point here is that knowledge is one thing and shaping, expressing, using that knowledge is quite another. The latter is called talent, which word comes from ancient word roots for “money.” –Talent, then, is reasonably using knowledge for a pay-off, for earning remuneration, recognition, reward.
One can increase one’s knowledge, but I don’t believe that one can enlarge one’s talent. Knowledge is acquired, but talent is inborn and emerges in the living process. I think one can only polish the talent to bring knowledge to others.
How many astrology students are preoccupied, even obsessed with gaining knowledge about astrology as an absorbing hobby. I see it all the time: people ravenously over-measuring, taking hours and hours –even days—to prepare a horoscope. How far need one go with measurement knowledge? --My point here is that those students should be spending time with their talent as well,polishing their use of knowledge carefully and thoroughly, directing it to others, to the world around them.
At the start of my Master’s Degree Course, I have seen people, with giant amounts of knowledge fritter themselves into a frenzy as they try to create the outlines of a dramatically relevant consultation. They are at a glorified level of “this-mans-that,” which carries with it enormous anxiety about personal performance … i.e., “am I right or wrong?”
I take these people and their knowledge and work it down –chop it down-- to the germ at the center. And on this kernel of valid information, this cogent surmise, I help them build a series of postulates, conjectures, about behaviors that will dramatize development in the fulfillment of their client’s individual needs. With this fresh fundamental awareness, confidence awakens and talent begins to bloom. The artist analyst emerges.
A man and his wife –clearly very ritzy-successful-- came up to me at a party. The wife did all the talking about the fact that she and her husband were both LEOs, and … what could I tell them about themselves? The husband was interested but was reluctant to show it.
I listened to the wife and watched the husband.
Now, I didn’t take my knowledge and turn it inside out under the pressure of the moment, searching for signs of which decanate in Leo might differentiate her and him from him and her. I didn’t look into their eyes to see if some certain pink lines betrayed the pattern of a Moon of Arcturus (just kidding!). –I trusted my knowledge and allowed my instrument –my consciousness, my poise, my sensitivity— to assimilate the question: “What can you tell us about ourselves?” Talent would have to speak here, not a torrent of knowledge.
Gently, I said just two words: “Who leads?”
That prompted a huge reservoir of life experience within each of them and between them suddenly to rush into their awareness. They were stunned, and, saying something polite, the lady quickly armed her husband and herself away from me.
You understand that remark perfectly. You know enough to appreciate all the values locked within it. You see my technique of relating the horoscope to the reality of the client, NOT imposing my knowledge onto the horoscopic manifestation of their birth moment, for them to evaluate right or wrong. I spoke into an issue and targeted relevancy.
Knowledge is one thing –but how much do we really need? Talent is quite another –so when are we going to give attention to polishing it?
The Fallacy of Comparisons I’ve heard diffident astrologers say, “Well I don’t have as much talent as so and so has.” --I don’t think that is valid; the quantity of talent is not the issue here. What is at issue is how polished is the talent one has?
There is no doubt that a student in my Course who completes the 9th Lesson (advanced Rectification) is a knowledgeable professional, probably among the finer astrologers in the country, with regard to technique. But the student who goes on through the next 10 Lessons polishing her/his talent through the challenges and instruction provided, THAT student becomes certainly one of the finest practicing astrologers there is.
What happens is this: “equal time” is given to the talent as it is to the knowledge. Confidence begets development of stature. Horoscope analysis-preparation for full-life discussion is cut down to about 45 minutes or even much less. Genius is then defined by knowing what’s important, and the talent takes over.
This polishing of talent is based upon communication, about asking questions creatively (see “Counseling Insights” this month), listening creatively, paraphrasing tremendously important therapy deductions into the client situation at hand. The process of using knowledge becomes smooth, streamlined, and eminently fulfilling.
Another subtle example: This month, a friend who is curator of a desert history museum asked me if I would spend time training a Yavapai Indian lady to read a long poem in English and make a substantial welcoming statement that would be videotaped and played continuously at the entrance to the Museum.
Now this may appear to have little to do with astrology, but it definitely has everything to do with an approach to a human being, a reality condition, that must be made as fulfilling as possible.
The lady spoke English, of course, but it was influenced strongly by her native tongue and certainly did not have the feel for poetry and drama to which our ears are accustomed. –I had the theatrical knowledge for how to make this grand presentation, but how was I going to be able to show her how to capture the mystery, awe, and beauty in these words herself? How could I bring out her native talent?
I asked her about her birthday! She was a Scorpio. And she had six children, all relatively young.
There was my answer. The knowledge within me worked through my confidence. Out of that polished process, I explained to her how we would tell the poem, the story, etc. in terms she would understand perfectly: I said, “let’s tell it as if it were an exciting secret, sharing it with your children before bedtime; help them see the images in their dreams.” --THAT is a lush Scorpio dimension/statement, of course. And you would have applauded mightily when you saw this lady’s face light up with understanding. It appealed to her; astrology had led her into the picture. I was relating her birthright energies back to her at this time of challenge and opportunity. [And that is exactly what we do in a consultation!]
We had three sessions together. And then, in her presentation, she gave the Approval Committee goosebumps. [I had even given her big cue cards with which to practice at home, with her children holding them for her. Everyone was part of the telling of the beautiful mystery tale of their Indian tribe in the desert. It became so much more than reciting words, parroting measurements.]
***The skill of the astrologer is the talent to bring knowledge to the human being, to reflect Self-information back to the human being and into a developing reality; what will help the person grow in freedom and fulfillment.
Please don’t worry so much about knowledge. Get the knowledge right, but know that, in the end, talent is more important. –How are you polishing yours?
Next Update: January 30, 2003