April 22, 2024

Believing is Seeing?

Management of Measurement Constructs

Believing is Seeing?

The adage in our language “Seeing is Believing” is a reality statement. It’s a statement, a mind-set about evidence and proof. In astrology, it can be applied to knowing that a measurement complex defines a reality situation that can not be denied. We see it there in the horoscope, and our knowledge and experience with it have us believing it is so. We don’t budge on the point.

But this mind-set can be focused differently … and cause problems: it is all too easy for us to see what we believe. This is a projection statement: we see what we individually know, what we want to see, what should be there!

Just look at the passions and disputes aroused in the astrology involving the recent presidential election! –Were we objective (the antidote to Believing is Seeing) about a 50-50 choice? Were personal viewpoints constantly getting in the way of seeing clearly what we probably did not want to believe? Were we trying to find some way to see our personal belief?

Of course, we all understand this subjective spot we all too easily get ourselves into. When we feel that we’re swirling with it all we write, “I am being objective here” or “this is not my personal viewpoint”; the unconscious is slipping out with assertions that we are not being objective, that our personal viewpoint is indeed in the way.

It is interesting in Forum activity, except for a handful of seasoned, secure practitioners, sure of their technique and supported by experience, to see how anonymity for the commentator allowed/allows the most assured comments. Personal accountability is erased by a no-name name with regard to being proved right or wrong.

And, of course, the pressure of right or wrong is increased to the highest point when the possibility is a choice between just two alternatives.

Rectification We can see this same pressure –belief supporting vision—in rectification. I have long observed the caution that the astrologer all too easily rectifies to please the astrologer. Certainly, that is a necessary part of the process –we must have confidence in our work process and achievment proof. But we must be ever vigilant about what we “read into” measurement complexes. Otherwise, how can we explain two astrologers, three or more each with a different time but staking their individual “lives” on the rightness of the time divined?!

We must know what we don’t know. We must give some leeway in our deductive process and not pursue with crusader zeal the opinionated doggedness of personal belief.

Idealism How often idealism distorts what we see!; what we look for in our horoscope work. I have seen many hundreds of horoscopes viewed analytically through pink glasses to the point that the individual becomes non-discernable. –How many astrologers project onto the horoscopes they work with values, behaviors, desires, criticisms they feel in their own life? How often is the belief that “this is how you should be in this situation” put onto the horoscope, onto the client, without it emerging through mutual discussion within the astrologer’s objective lens?

I will never forget a student of mine in England rebelling against the technique instruction of speaking deeply about Saturn-rx phenomenology. It was an impasse. I telephoned her to try to dissolve the resistance, and she said, “But you don’t really think that after some tea and talk, when we begin working with the horoscope, that we should talk about these deep things, do you? We just don’t do that here!” –Here cultural belief blinds analytical sight.

Denial Do we censor what we see –what we suspect—because we want it to be otherwise? –No one can really feel hate toward their mother. No one can possibly reject Religion in his or her life. No one can respectably talk about sex within a relationship. Do we deny dimensions of reality because we either don’t believe those dimensions exist or because we don’t want to see them if perhaps they do?

Do we find ourselves affected by the presence of the client –of the horoscope—and not believe needs, behavioral constructs, goals are possible? What do we say to Jimmy Swaggart, for example; Billy Graham; Scott Peterson; the USA; its president? How do we accommodate the out-of-image news or the out-and-out “bad news” we don’t want to see?

Of course, we can not expect perfection in objective analysis; astrology is not a science (even though it uses scientific measurements). The humanistic dimensions are crucially important in our art, and they lead astrologer and client together to real and honest and forthright conclusions.

Let’s keep these thoughts in mind. They help us do better work. They alert us to believing that what we see can be and we should not get in the way of that existential course.