ASTROLOGY FOR COMPANIES (and their employees)
-by Joyce Hoen DF Astrol S-
Text from one of the talks given at the ISAR 2000 conference in Anaheim, October 2000. This text/talk is suitable only for astrologers as it presupposes knowledge of and experience in astrological counseling for others.
I was asked by ISAR to share something about my astrological work with companies, as I have been and still am free-lance employed by two IT companies since a couple of years as part of a coaching system, which has evolved out of a kind of new trend in business - at least in Western Europe and more specifically in The Netherlands. On the surface it seems that the gap between the professional world and astrology is narrowing.*** And on the surface it also looks as if astrology gets a boost of its astrological ego because of this acceptance by the businessworld: as if astrology all of a sudden is a 'thing to do', for instance as part of management training courses.
Now, maybe the purpose of this talk is to share something that may help those of you who will in the future also be employed by companies as an astrologer. Let me say first that I work in an enormous variety of parallel worlds: I work with medical astrology, I do consultations for people to just help them over a little stretch in time in set-ups that almost look like a marketplace, where I can speak to a person only 15 minutes and then I will do 20 or 30 quick consultations one after another. I do consultations for children, for people on the spiritual path, in this set-up or that set-up, a magazine employed me to do consultations for problem cases which then got published, and I do consultations for a company which pays me outrageous fees for that. In fact, it doesn't matter to me - I go wherever the wind blows me.
People are people everywhere, and the longer I do astrology, the more satisfying I find this kind of work that we do. It is wonderful, absolutely wonderful to be able to just help people with this great instrument that we have. There is a lot of satisfaction into sometimes getting paid a fee that will afford me to laze about for the rest of the month, but the true satisfaction comes from applying our great craft and find that people see some light again after a session.
So what do you need to specialize in to work for companies? We are working with people, with life, with processes of growth that people go through, and we are addressing something that is not addressed in our schools, which is: how to cope with life and find meaning in it, whether you are deciding on a new career, whether you are ill, whether you are about to become a mother, or about to divorce, it does not really matter. What is needed is that you understand people, inside out, and for that you need to understand yourself, inside out. And not only that, this understanding needs correlation with the astrology that you use, so that you can apply the wisdom you gained from your clients and your own life on a consistent basis. If the quality of your work is such that people really find it helpful, your business will grow. It goes by itself, and the wind will indeed take you where you are needed.
Now all these parallel worlds that we are living in, for instance, the financial world, the world of government, taxes/social security and civil world, the world of medicine, the world of IT businesses and of e-commerce, the new age world, the academic world, the spiritual world, the so-called spiritual world and the world of astrologers, all these worlds have their own languages, their own jargon. And that's the real difficulty for an astrologer: one's astrology has to be adapted to the culture that it is used in.
My first IT-employer would say: "Okay, you do the astrology, and I will sort of make the translation for our world". The thing is, the words he was using for this new developing computerized IT-world of yuppies and fluppies (Fluppies, by the way are the new young professionals: the Fun Loving Urban Professionals, as they call themselves) are totally beyond me, I don't interface with it one way or the other. I don't interface much with the academic world either, but that is a different story.
It can really put you off balance, to communicate with a world that has its own language. Anybody outside the civil servant world trying to get something changed by the authorities in the community may understand what I mean: you first have to learn their language. Or an even better example: enter the world of lawyers and you are finding out that they use language that is totally beyond you.
Astrology and Communication are twins however. Of course Astrology is Communication, it is the communication between the sky and the earth as it were. But real communication, as Krishnamurti used to say, is about Communion, it can even be silent, it is about a union in togetherness for one moment in time. Fortunately then, beyond all the jargon that I don't understand in all of these worlds that I sometimes work in, I can commune with people on the basis of their inherent humanity, that we all share, no matter what world we are living in. On the one hand it is an incredible drawback to not be a total part of the world one is doing astrology in and one certainly needs to learn some of its jargon to get by; on the other hand, if you are stuck in just one kind of world your whole life, you get blinded and cannot really communicate with people at all anymore.
When doing personal chart readings it usually is not too helpful to be personally involved with the persons one is reading for. It seems that the opposite applies to reading for employees in a business situation, from the point of view of the business. In one sense, a group of employees in a business situation is like a family, with all the struggles, power issues and synastries going on, just like in an ordinary family situation. When reading a chart for an individual member of a greater whole, of a family, we usually focus on individualization, on bringing the person OUT of the matrix of the family womb.
When someone consciously chooses employment and seeks employment with a firm, the individual consciously (or not of course) enters a whole new set of relationships. It is not the astrologer's purpose to read charts for individual employees and loosen them from the company, as instead we now seek creative and fulfilling purposes for BOTH the individual employee and the company. Thus in a sense we are working in an opposite direction compared to individual birthcharts.
There is the greater organism, the whole, the company with its own spiritual purpose and there is the individual seeking to express him- or herself WITHIN that greater whole. This creates a whole new set of challenges for the astrologer: for no longer are we concerned with the individuation of the employee, but we are concerned with the ADAPTATION of the individual to the greater whole, the business, or company, and at the same time in such a way, that both the individual purpose as well as the business purpose can be fulfilled. Therefore, it usually is much better to know about the firm and the business, which is the backdrop of the relationship of the individual employee and the business.
Astrologers usually are hired from outside this so-called family structure of the business and they may know very little about that firm. Doing individual charts without any idea of the firm in a business-setting therefore is no longer fruitful. Astrology works better once the astrologer is familiar with the greater whole that the individual astrology is applied to. If you are a working astrologer working for a business, you usually have enough insights. But again, if you are hired from outside, this can be an enormous challenge. It would be good to understand and know something about the spiritual purpose of a business, which can really only be found in the company's chart and a good talk with the owners. For the company itself is mainly concerned with survival and growth on the material plane (usually that is), yet there is also a spiritual purpose.
Of course all of this complicates matters, for the company who employs YOU as an astrologer may not be too interested in the spiritual purpose of his firm, even if the company is dependent on that, knowingly or not. So you can get into a real confusing mess here, reading charts for employees as you read them in combination with the company that one is working for. Of course it is safe to assume that an individual's own purpose in life is a great starting point, because as we read charts, we want to empower the individual in the first place.
Afterall, a company will thrive at its best when individuals themselves can be at their best too. However, the individual's own purpose is twofold also: they themselves usually want to 'get on in life' and thus also are on the path of survival and financial growth. The individual employee him- or herself may not even be aware of a greater meaning in his or her life, and astrology can be truly enlightening for them in this sense.
To me, however, employees are part of an organic whole in their function as employees. This organic whole is the backdrop for the individual's growth: any employee is part of that greater organic whole. I find myself naturally gravitating to help an individual adjust as well as possible to that greater whole, and thus read charts for an individual by making their relationship with that business that they are employed with 'purposeful', BOTH for the growth of the company as well as their own. But the Whole comes First to me, i.e. the Company, NOT the individual. This surely is a challenge, for I also believe that the whole operates much more better, if an individual can grow personally in relationship with that whole.
Sometimes, it is not beneficial for either party to have a relationship as shown by astrology. Sometimes adjustments are needed in the individual to make him or her fit better the spiritual purpose of the relationship. It is impossible to adjust the larger to the smaller, it is the smaller part that needs to adjust to the greater whole. Might that be the reason that economically Japan was doing such a great job since all employees adjusted to the greater whole? Individuals are "collectivized" in the East as it were. How to get at a point where the individual is aware of what his participation in the greater whole is meant for: what opportunities for learning and growth lie in any adjustment for him or her individually?
Sometimes, companies need change. But it is in reality the COMPANY's need for change that attracts the right individuals initiating this change. If an individual needs change: does he or she attract a company too that will fulfill HIS or HER spiritual purpose in life? Does a company exist for an individual? Or does an individual exist for a Company?
Anyway, I simply use the composite chart, for the composite chart to me is an indication of the spiritual purpose of a RELATIONSHIP. And the moment we talk about an employee, we no longer talk about an individual, or even about two individual charts, i.e. the company versus the employee: we are in reality
talking about A RELATIONSHIP. The moment an individual is being employed by a company, a NEW chart is valid: in that area of his life, which is called his working life, he is no longer an individual, NOR is he/she a simple extension of the Company - he is creating a new energy field, which is nothing but the relationship of that particular individual with the company as a whole, and this new energy field may even overtake individual traits of the personal chart of that employee.
Frankly, the same thing happens in personal relationships: once we decide to live with someone, the energy field in which we move and live changes, since we adjust ourselves to the relationship energies and almost become different people! Also in this case, the composite tells me of the time-windows important to the relationship, as well as the ultimate spiritual purpose of the relationship.
And so it is with the company's chart and the individual employee. If I am going to help an individual employee, I will look at his or her own chart. But if I am going to help people meaningfully in their FUNCTION of being an employee, I will compare the individual charts with the RELATIONSHIP chart, which to me is the
Not the synastry so much. The composite defines the purpose of the relationship, the energy field created by the relationship that would otherwise not exist. A composite is about relationship, Synastry is about TWO separate individual charts. But we want to look at the meaning of the relationship in this case, not at the meaning of two separate charts each going their own way.
The composite then will be the BASIS for the employment of the individual, from the INDIVIDUAL's point of view. Because it is only that particular individual employee who can make this particular composite with the firm or company. Some composite charts will be counterproductive to either the company or the individual. Some composite charts will be very productive for both individual charts, i.e. the company and the individual. The ideal situation is that the composite empowers both the company's purpose of existing as well as the
individual's spiritual purpose in life. But as in all relationship work, I will never ever use astrology for separating two individuals, for all relationships exist with a purpose. Conflict and tensions are there for awareness and spiritual growth.
So my main focus in this kind of work is to support BOTH parties involved in the relationship, and thus interpret the relationship in such a way that the highest potential is indicated for ALL parties involved, WITHIN the limits of the composite, which symbolizes the message from the cosmos for the purpose of the relationship in the first place.
Not all chartwork I have done has been succesful, given the basic philosophies I just outlined, because it is quite a complex thing that I am describing here and my inner beliefs about how to go about that, may in some cases be totally contrary to the ideas of the company who employs ME. Where does my main responsibility lie? With the individual employee I read charts for, or with MY employer who pays me? I am hired by companies who sometimes have a completely different idea about my work. In the long run, however, this approach that I am using seems to work fine, but not always on a short term basis, because I do not always fulfill the expectations of the company hiring me.
The thing is, from an astrological technical point of view and explaining this to lay people, all this sounds complicated, but in reality it is very straightforward: if the individual does his or her thing, he is more useful to a
company than if he does NOT live his own chart to the highest potential. A group of people consists of individuals, and the best way for a greater whole to function is for each individual to have THEIR OWN place in that greater whole.
Astrological counseling usually is about problem solving. For me that means the Pluto and Saturn issues in a chart, as simply as that. Pluto is the force outside one's own control that indicates WHY things happen, and Saturn is our karma that needs to become dharma, i.e. is our wordly destiny.
(The samples used in the talk re stariq dot com and ISAR are not printed here)
PLUTO IN THE COMPOSITE
(ref. Green/Pluto Vol I, but solely from the houseposition)
- Composite Pluto in the first house:
Depending on the specific role of the individual in the larger whole, either one of the two may dominate the life of the other completely. An employee may feel he looses his individuality working for that specific company, or he may take control. An example of this is from personal experience: my involvement with Oibibio, a former New Age center in Amsterdam, showed a composite Pluto right on the Ascendant. On the one hand there was nothing else for me to do but to give completely and totally of myself and not withhold anything, on the other hand it is true that the projects I was involved in with them, ended up in such a way that I felt completele free to do what I wanted to do even as an outsider. It was an incredible struggle though and it could be called a short but intense relationship, but well worth it. It transformed me, and as I went along I learned to stay free and independent even within the relationship and thus within my own power.
- Composite Pluto in the 2nd house:
Two of the composites I did for the IT company I work for showed a Pluto in the 2nd house. Both people eventually left the company leaving a trail of financial havoc behind them which was pretty dramatic for the company. One of them was one of the founder-directors, and the other employee with the composite Pluto in the 2nd house had within one year set up an enormously successful branch within the company that provided a lot of power and money. But in no time, he started out for himself taking that entire business with him. With Pluto in the 2nd house we enter themes of plain survival and the fear of not surviving. When both of these people left, they did indeed leave a heritage, both of them, where the survival of the company was at stake.
It is interesting that Pluto or Scorpio in the 2nd house often refers to power and money issues. Both of these people invested wholesale in the company and saw results beyond the ordinary. But when they withdrew their investments, the opposite occurred. Thus these composites gave a theme to the company, the theme of survival, that was not really a theme in the company's chart. The trouble is that money still makes this world go around, and people WILL go for selfish goals if the company itself does not have a spiritual ideal in such a way, that people can relate to it and commit to it for the good of the greater whole. Anyway, where financial matters are concerned, I am tempted to be careful with composites with Pluto in the 2nd house in all cases where motives are not 300% pure and that is rare, at least in the Dutch businessworld.
- Composite Pluto in the 3rd house:
The third house is not an entirely unimportant area for an IT company. One of the composites of a person I have done career counseling for showed a Pluto in the 3rd house in the composite and it has been and is one of those highly successful relationships. It is a composite with a younger person who has been given completely free range to develop new communication technology and this younger person does that with full commitment, also to the ideal of the company in which he truly believes and feels at home with (not unimportant for this placement with Pluto in the 3rd). He actually transformed methods of computer communication, methods that will be sold to other companies too. On a personal level of communication he is incredibly shy and was very much empowered by the astrological readings: information leaked out which management never knew anything about because this younger person never spoke his mind, but once it was out in the open, communication started and he was given every opportunity to go ahead. Now this, of course, is the danger of a Pluto in the 3rd house composite: there could be a lock on information if either one of the two parties involved is not feeling safe about communicating. Feeling safe about communicating is therefore a number one issue for these composites.
- 4th: The issue here challenge of the inner security - if the company provides the security this will collapse. (The 4th and 5t house wre addressed in the personal examples not printed here)
- Composite Pluto in hte 6th house
Currently, many people making careers have Pluto in Virgo, and therefor a dynamic of Pluto in a composite 6th house would reflect the Pluto in Virgo generation to some extent. I once consulted a couple who were working together as consultants whose composite showed Pluto in the 6th house. There was an ongoing dynamic of both individuals criticizing one another and both felt the need to help the other person. I told them that the only way their composite would really work out, was if BOTH individuals dedicated their work to the whole and even to the other person. I.e. if I give you and the other gives me, without me needing and the other needing anything, it can work. It is the highest possible dynamic for a Pluto in the composite 6th house. Naturally, if the composite is a composite between a company and not another individual and the employee, the employee may want to continuously improve on workmethods or even feel the deep need to improve things on the workfloor. He/she may work in total dedication, but if there is the need to improve the whole what ultimately will happen, is that the individual will collapse in on him- or herself. Total dedication without expecting anything in return would seem to be the only thing possible for a Pluto in the 6th house. In a few cases, this may be necessary for the development of the individual: to learn to be of service to an ideal. In most cases, where an employee needs something in return, i.e. money or esteem, the individual may eventually feel overwhelmed by the task at hand, which she or he is trying to keep under control, and refuse to be a "slave"" as it were to the ideal of the greater whole. I.e. such situations can only work in idealistic workplaces.
- With Pluto in the 7th house of a composite between an individual and an employee, the lessons are about cooperation and right relationships, and again: how to not be totally usurped by the company and have the relationship on a fair basis. (this example was also used in the personal examples, not printed here) , just like Pluto in the 8th house: Pluto in the 8th house could be good for individuals who need to reorganize the business. In most cases they will have a deep influence on the company, or vice-versa, and powerplays may even occur. The individual is tested on its ego.
- With Pluto in the 9th house the individual may be the one who provides the vision for the company, he or she definitely needs to feel that the philosophy the company stands for is worth to work for. It may also be that the individual has a totally different and personal view of where the company is heading, leading to an implosion of his or her beliefsystem, i.e. after a while their ideals could seem to be wholly different.
- With Pluto in the 10th house leadership roles and the right use of power are important. Another houseposition used in the personal examples not printed here.
- With Pluto in the 11th house the individual has the opportunity to work with larger groups in the organizations and to make these groups feel secure and safe as they partake in group dynamics. It may also be that the individual has issues of belonging or not belonging to the "family" of the company, and needs to reevaluate his or her identity in reference to the grouplife of the company,
- With Pluto in the 12th house there could be total loyalty, whatever happens, even if the company goes bust for instance.
As mentioned before these short descriptions are inspired by Jeff Green's work on Pluto throughout the houses.. To a certain extent, SATURN will indicate the same issues, when found in certain houses of a chart, with Saturn we enter issues that we definitely and consciously need to work on ourselves, as a kind of a task. With Pluto things seem to happen on deep emotional levels, and they explain deeper core issues, without us really ever providing control of these situations.
In all cases, it is true that the age of any employee will also provide a certain background for counseling. Individuals before 29,6 years of age, need to prove themselves. They are more insecure vis-a-vis the outer world, and have a definite need for confirmation, they also have a need for diploms, and certification from outside. Most of their work is done from the level of ambition, of obtaining a position in the outer world. Quite often, it is not before someone has grown beyond the first Saturn-cycle if they pass this passage succesfully, that someone will know from within what their lifepurpose is. I once counseled an employee with Saturn in the natal 9th house who continuously needed to study and gain one diploma after another. He was working for this IT - company and the question we were dealing with at that time, was which study he was going to take up next. Only, he was 29,6 years old, so I asked him to change his perspective on things. Stop the routine of continuously needing external confirmation and rather than studying more, start coaching and teaching himself, i.e. BECOME the authority.
Older employees, round about their 2nd Saturn return, are being prepared to being less executive and more coaching on yet another level. However, they often feel that they are being passed, that younger people are taking over, and they may at times feel themselves pretty useless roundabout their 2nd Saturn-return. A good counseling session where this dynamic is being explained as a necessity for their inner life, can really do wonders, although some people will just not listen to the message. I remember I did a series of consultations with a woman once who owned her own business. Just before she experienced her 2nd Saturn-return, she thought to herself: I'm going to sell my business to a larger company, and will still stay the boss, but then I will have less responsibilities. So far so good. However, as her business was being taken over, she started to notice that younger less experienced people were dictating the way things were going, and since she was quite a controlling Capricorn/Scorpio nature, she became pretty jealous and spiteful. I told her many times to let go, and seek more a position of an adviser rather than an executive, and tried to explain the needs of the 3rd Saturn cycle which are wholly different from the 2nd Saturn cycle, but the seed of jealousy was control was too strong, so she started to fight. A fight which in the end she lost. She lost face and her position. It took quite some time for her to heal from this process, and resettle and adapt to a new way of life. A life more geared to the inner life rather than being important in the outer life.
I expect that the 2nd Saturn-return will be more difficult for those who have not passed successfully through the 1st Saturn return and who keep needing confirmation from outside after they are 30 years old. Unfortunately, this is true for many many people. But understanding this dynamic, surely you can see what a wonderful job astrologers really can do? I call it: bringing people back to themselves. Attuned and in relationship with their inner selves. I can hardly think of a nicer job in life.
*** This was in the Uranus in Aquarius timeframe. The Uranus in Pisces timeframe ended it all again.